Extracts from 2006 Witham Staple issues 

Topical issues are aired and forthcoming events detailed each month in The Witham Staple printed magazine: 

Current Magazine [Click to Download]

 

A list of contacts for local interest  and community groups is updated in September each year:

Local Information Sheet   [Click to Download]

 

Local Advertisers

 

The Witham Staple is mandated to reflect what is happening in our Lincolnshire community (i.e. the villages of Aubourn, Bassingham, Carlton le Moorland, Norton Disney, Stapleford, Thurlby, Witham St Hughs and the rural areas surrounding these villages).

This page selects some extracts published during 2006 that provide a flavour of the prevailing themes.

February

March

April

May

June

July /August  

September

October

November

December

@ @ @

February 2006

Thoughts of Love …

True love is a durable fire 

In the mind ever burning; 

Never sick, never old, never dead, 

From itself never turning. 

by: Sir Walter Raleigh.

Here we are then already moving on into February with thoughts of true love for St Valentine's Day. Hope is that you all had a good Christmas and New Year and suspect those New Year resolutions now may be just a distant memory. Well done to you if you're sticking to it still, and if not there's always next year. 

As the Editor it is important to me to hear back from you, your thoughts both positive and negative on what you think or would like to read in future editions. Unfortunately recent feedback brought to my attention was negative. I am sorry for this. However taking on the new roll as Editor brings with it new blood and fresh ideas. Overall it has been important to me that I stick to my job description continuing to produce a magazine full of local news and events with a few new ideas. 1500 copies are printed for 8 villages with an estimated 2800 readers from young to old. With this in mind voluntarily each month it is left to me to put together a magazine for you all to enjoy reading and we should appreciate that from time to time it will not be possible to please every single reader with every word, so broadening my horizons and spreading my wings I do my best to produce something for you all to pick up and happily digest.

Carlton Le Moorland Village Street Parties 

Following the success of the previous Village Street Parties for residents of Carlton le Moorland, it is our intention, with the backing of the Parish Council, to hold a similar event in early summer probably on the Playing Field area, with all monies raised to be donated to Childline. If you want to be involved in organising this event or have any ideas that you would like to be included please join us at the first committee meeting on Thursday 9th February at 7.30pm in Carlton le Moorland Village Hall.

@ @ @

Did You Know? 

The churchyard that surrounds St Mary's Church, Carlton le Moorland is not only a peaceful resting place for those who are buried there and a lovely quiet spot for anybody to enjoy, is also a haven for wildlife - plants, trees, small mammals, insects and birds. Our ancient village churchyards often prove to be among the few natural conservation areas in a landscape of otherwise intensive agriculture: they have remained over the centuries a sanctuary for local flora and fauna, free from herbicides and pesticides, and where animal and plant species have been able to survive and quietly flourish. A botanical survey of the churchyard identified over sixty species of flowering plants and some twenty species of tree. The number and variety of trees is particularly good for birds and insects. As well as many songbirds, we have resident tawny owls and greater spotted woodpeckers. You can find snowdrops and celandines, aconites and bluebells, cowslips and guelder rose. 

Sympathetic maintenance is important if wildlife is to continue to flourish, and gravestones and floral tributes need to complement the lovely natural context. A helping hand has been given on several occasions by young trainees from Hill Holt Wood. In December a group of them and their two leaders came and cleared away the dense congestion of Russian vine that had grown up into one of the ancient yew trees, threatening to kill it. At the same time, they presented a fine bench they had made from a Chinese juniper tree they had felled in the churchyard a few years ago. Such involvement in our village life by these young people sets a very good example and is much appreciated. You can see pictures of them at work on below.

 

by Stan Underwood

@ @ @

1st Bassingham 30th Lincoln Cub Pack 

Many parents will be aware of the difficulties I have had admitting children between 8 and 10½ into the Cub pack. The problem will be worse at the end of the summer term when I will be the only warranted leader which will cap the number of cubs I am authorised to look after to 30. With the current planned admittance of 4 Beavers the numbers are currently 31, in 2006 there are only 4 Cubs reaching Scouts and thus freeing up just 3 places. Demand for those places is not only from Beavers reaching Cub age but children who have been on the Cub waiting list for a long time. Following the A.G.M. the group have put in place an admission policy, which was, printed in the Witham Staple September 2005 edition. 

The only way we can admit those keen to join the pack is for someone to come forward who either already holds a leaders or assistant leaders warrant or would be willing to train for one. Please let me know or any member of the committee know if you are prepared to help or just want to discuss what is involved. 

Akela (Alison Kelley) and the Bassingham Scout Group Committee.

@ @ @

Bassingham & District WI 

Our 70th Birthday Party was very successful indeed there were 70 of us past and present members and guests, and the Bassingham Choir, plus special guest Patricia Munday, chair of the Lincolnshire South Federation. There was a splendid feast provided by present members, the Choir's entertainment was first class, and the interpolations of excerpts from the old minute books were well chosen. Mr John Roddam gave the vote of thanks. Although the evening went on much later than intended, no one complained, and a good time was had by all. The January meeting was held at Carlton le Moorland as usual, where we had "A Funny Kind of Evening with The Gossiper" of the Lincolnshire Echo, who is otherwise known as Peter Brown and was very amusing and entertaining. 

The competition 'An Amusing Headline' was won by Jo Hughes, and the Flower of the Month was winter flowering jasmine, brought by Barbara Smith. Thanks to the Carlton le Moorland members for the refreshments.

WI next meeting is Thursday 2nd February at 7.30pm Bassingham Village Hall 

Robin Dennett will be giving a video/talk on Dennett's Ice Cream (with samples!) Competitions will be 'Flower of the Month' and 'A Surprise'.

@ @ @

A Success Story 

Andi is a member of the Bassingham Patchwork & Quilting Group. Her sister's daughter-in-law Debbie, working in Kent, teaches disabled people to use computers. Debbie was horrified to find that Tracy Harrison, a 22 year old paraplegic with no speech, was still having to use a wheelchair she'd had since the age of 11, and her primitive form of speaker was not working. She had had no official help since she was 18, and her parents were doing their best to raise money to buy her a speaker and a new chair by holding coffee mornings, raffles etc, but it was a slow process. Debbie began asking friends to donate £1 when she met them, and then Andi if she and her friends at the Patchwork & Quilting Group would help. 

Instead of making a donation Andi suggested that we all help to make a patchwork quilt, which was then sent to Debbie to be raffled, and raised £300. Tracy herself excitedly drew the winning ticket. The winner was a very happy Mrs Joan Bowser of Newark who is now the proud owner of the patchwork quilt. A local butcher put a collection box in his shop. The charity Scope donated £3,000 and another charity offered to double whatever sum was raised, which brought the total to £7,000. The local Council then gave Tracy a computer, and with the butcher's box and friends' donations, enough money has been raised to buy a chair as well as the speaking aid equipment. Tracy's parents were overwhelmed, and they and Tracy are thrilled that she will now be able to 'speak' to her family and friends.

@ @ @

Want To Play Rounders 

We are looking to develop Rounders teams in the local area, if you and your friends would like to play on those nice sunny evenings then please contact me on the number below. We are also looking for people to help coach or officiate in Rounders. If you have a little time that you can spare, come and enjoy the social side and help people to run and play at their club.

@ @ @

Credit Action 

It takes a lot of courage to admit you have a debt problem, and even more to seek help. The Christian national money education charity, Credit Action aims to bridge the gap between those in difficulty and the range of services available to help them. There is a free, informal service available to help people to work out their income and outgoings and draw up a personal budget. We know when to refer someone to specialist advice and can support them through that process. Everything is kept strictly confidential. The kinds of people we help can range from someone who is evidently in debt and needs support in accessing an advice service, to someone who is perfectly solvent but wants to identify to give or save more each month. You may be a single parent, pensioner, widow or student it does not matter. 

My name is Stewart Logan and I have been attending St Michael's Church in Bassingham since moving here in 1995. some of you may know me as the PCC Treasurer or perhaps as the one who runs the bar at most Church events! For confidential help in working out a budget that meets all your needs. If at the end of our time together the sums still don't add up, we will look forward to a way together. Credit Action highlights the problems caused by poor personal money management and provides practical advice and support to avoid and resolve those problems. The Charity's main aim is to ensure that normal life is not disrupted by money management problems. creditaction.org.uk

@ @ @

Community Development Officer At Bassingham Local Access Point The Witham Office every 2nd Monday each Month During 2006 

RACoL (Regeneration Across Communities of Lincolnshire) has been set up to help create sustainable rural communities and the Development Officers that work for RACoL are available to help the community in many ways. Who might benefit from speaking to a Community Development Officer? 

Ø Someone trying to turn an idea into a project that will benefit local people. 

Ø Groups providing a community service who need to expand and aren't sure how to go about it. 

Ø Groups seeking funding. 

Ø Groups struggling with funding applications, or who want advice on gathering evidence of need and community consultation. 

Ø Groups that need help writing a constitution, equal opportunities policy or a business plan. 

Ø Group struggling with finances, policies and management. 

Ø Groups that have identified training needs and don't know what help is available. 

Ø Groups looking to fund environmental, heritage or tourism projects. 

Ø Social Enterprises that need funding or advice. 

Ø Groups with a project which aims to increase employment and training opportunities or access to key services. 

Ø People trying to set up a not for profit child care facility, community shop etc. 

Back to top of page

@ @ @

March 2006

 expect to pass through this world but once;

any good thing therefore that I can do or any kindness;

that I can show to any fellow creature, let me do it now;

let me not defer or neglect it,

for I shall not pass this way again!

By: Stephen Grellet

Editorial: 

March !! Spring is in the air, early flowers are blooming and the nights are pulling out, but don't be fooled there's still a night time nip in the air. This month brings with it St David's Day on the 1st along with Ash Wednesday, the start of Lent, a time to give a little something up, to spend 40 weekdays observing a time of fasting and penitence. The 17th is St Patrick's Day and then the 20th brings the start of Spring. On to the 26th we put the clocks forward 1 hour and don't you forget? I feel that this is also quite important in a small way it's "MOTHERS DAY".

Can I also just say what a success the new email contact seems to be with a lot of you giving it a go and running smoothly so far. It is however still nice to see some of you for a quick hello when you drop items through the door. Till April then, and Enjoy…..

@ @ @

A Change In Community Policing 

From the 9th January 2006, you may not have known it, but there was a fundamental change in the way your Community is being policed. PC 89 Paul Truelove and PC 430 Mark Cheetham were responsible as Community Beat Officers for two separate areas in the North Kesteven rural villages that border the A46 corridor and North Hykeham. 

 

PC Truelove now takes over responsibility for both these areas, as the new Community Beat Manager, along with Police Community Support Officer (or PCSO) Nick Stenner. PC Cheetham moves to Lincoln Police Station in the Crime Investigation Unit in his approach to retirement in the next 18 months. His professionalism and knowledge will be sadly missed in the community. These officers will be liasing closely with a newly formed Community Panel, with members who form part of the local community. This Panel will decide and dictate the priorities for Policing your area. It is important that your views and concerns, as members of the community, can be relayed to the Panel and considered at each meeting. 

 

PC Truelove has devised a Community Information Report form that can be completed and sent back so that local matters can be discussed. This form will be made available at local drop in sites and community buildings as well as from North Hykeham Police Station. A definitive list will be available in the next few months and will be published as soon as possible. 

 

PC Truelove and PCSO Stenner will endeavour to spend more time patrolling the community. They have already secured two drop in sites at Skellingthorpe and Thorpe on the Hill Community centres where they can complete paperwork and make enquiries without the need to return to North Hykeham Police Station. The officers are looking for further suitable venues and suggestions would be welcome. They will also be organising monthly Police Surgeries in most villages - so please look out on local notice boards and in local magazines for details and the chance to discuss local problems face-to-face. PC Truelove and PCSO Stenner would like you to be patient as this process is a time consuming matter that will take several weeks to get up and running properly.

 

Please report anything suspicious to the police immediately.

@ @ @

Public Information Community Panel Meeting 

The first Community Panel Meeting was held on 6th Feb to discuss Policing priorities in your area. As a result of this meeting a number of Policing issues were raised and priorities decided upon.

Priority 1 was overwhelming from the panel that it should be speeding vehicles and high traffic volume in the rural areas and villages. Members of the panel stated their concern at the increase in traffic flow and speed of all manner of vehicles, particularly HGV's, tractors and agricultural vehicles that were using certain villages as short-cuts and 'rat-runs'. The panel were asked to identify certain sites for speed enforcement and the officers noted these sites and made assurances that positive speed enforcement would be undertaken. (These sites have not been disclosed due to the sensitive nature of this matter in relation to public knowledge)

It was decided that youth disorder and youth related anti-social behaviour be the second priority. The general view of the panel was that it was a sporadic problem, particularly in and around village facilities. This was also associated with mopeds, cars and abuse of vehicles. It was agreed that this was a seasonal problem and that early intervention now would result in a decrease in problems with the warmer weather.

Other Matters: It was also discussed that as a secondary issue to speeding, we include parking on footpaths and parking problems associated with local Schools as another priority.

PC Truelove reiterated that it was vastly important that the public communicated problems and crimes to the Police - at the time those problems were happening. He stated that if the Police do not know what is going on then they are not able to react or intervene.

@ @ @

Monthly Police Surgeries In Your Area 

PC Truelove & PCSO Stenner will be holding police surgeries in the area. So if you have a problem, however big or small & would like to discuss this with your local Officers, then please drop in ...

@ @ @

Norton Disney Neighbourhood Watch 

Another year has passed since our last report. In the words of our ex-PC Mark Cheetham (now replaced by PC Paul Truelove and PCSO Nick Stenner) our village has very little crime! Although we have had thefts of Diesel from cars, car windows smashed and cash has been stolen from the Church Offertory box and recently a house was burgled and Diesel stolen from a farm vehicle, over the year this is very low reported crime compared to some other villages. We must be alert at all times! 

We have a very good team of Neighbourhood Watch Street Co-ordinators (listed below) but you can help to keep our village safe by telling your neighbour or nearest Coordinator when you go away. Leave a light on when you go out in the evening and don't leave anything on view in cars especially those not garaged. Don't entertain bogus officials or buy anything from doorstep sales people or have work done by them, if it goes wrong it could affect your statutory rights. 

Report anything suspicious to the Police and in an Emergency only dial 999 and ask for Police. If you report an incident affecting you, a crime number will be issued for Insurance purposes. Any difficulties in phoning, contact me and I maybe able to help. 

Street Co-ordinators: 

Jenny Wright 

Barbara Foottit

Revd. Jim Rooke 

Keith Gore 

Roy Voce 

Village Co-ordinator: Gordon Bancroft

@ @ @

1st Brant Broughton Brownies Trip to see Little Red Riding Hood. 

We took the Brownies to see the pantomime Little Red Riding Hood on Saturday afternoon, As usual it was brilliant and they thoroughly enjoyed it. At our next Brownie session we started our writers badge and one of the options to write about was the pantomime. Here are some extracts from their letters.

To Roxy, I liked it when you did the gym club because you had a funny costume.

Dear Prince Rupert, I thought you saved the day and I don't know if you remember but you were one of our teachers.

Dear Bassingham Pantomime & friends, I loved the pantomime and the person who did the makeup was very good. Roxie was good. I can't believe it was a man. Reggie was very funny indeed the top he was wearing was weird. But Rosie was beautiful and had a sweet voice. The wolf was terrifying and I was freaked out I nearly jumped out of my seat. Prince Rupert was very good and Gertrude was funny. Well I liked everyone.

Dear Bassingham Panto, The panto was great. Oh no it wasn't! Rosie was funny and Reggie was silly but Roxie was my most fab person. She was cool and funny and you should have seen her clothes they were wacky. The jogging clothes were cool.

To Roxie, Rosie and Kelly. Roxie you were funny all the time. Rosie you were sweet all the time. Kelly you were funny a little bit not all the time. I cannot believe that Roxie you were a man. Kelly I know you're the prince.

To village person in yellow dress, I recognised you from school. I think it was you.

Penny Taylor Brown Owl Brant Broughton Brownies

Well done Brownies, good luck in your badge work. The Editor.

Back to top of page

@ @ @

April 2006  

Editorial: 

Hello how are you all? Keeping well I hope, Good. 

I will endeavour to spread a little joy, as it's been cold and miserable of late do you not think. However lets look on because April is upon us already, where does the time go! We must be close now to being able to put winter to bed, and prepare ourselves for the brighter warmer months ahead. Summer is just around the corner and it's time to start planning, whether it be in the garden sowing the seeds, pruning and nursing plants back into life or booking that well-earned holiday you deserve, I'm sure there's something good that you can plan for. Back to now for a moment though, if I may, it's April and Easter a time to reflect on the resurrection of our Lord, so peruse through the magazine as there is plenty to keep you busy during the Holy weekend. For the younger ones or young at heart like me there's the excitement of our old friend the Easter Bunny dropping by with a chocolate treat! (how do you eat yours)? Then on to the celebration of our patron saint the dragon slayer himself, St George. Plus much much more so sit back and read on because without doubt I'm sure, they'll be something to catch your eye and just maybe our paths may cross at one of the many events going on this month. For now, Au revoir

@ @ @

Local History Group - 40th Anniversary of the Churches Coming Together

Thursday 27th April 7.30pm Bassingham Church

To mark the 40th Anniversary of the churches coming together as one group there will be Displays and a Talk on the history of the villages. The talk will focus on the villages at the time of the Doomsday Book, Watermills, footpaths and listed buildings.

Entrance fee of £2.50 inclusive of a donation to Bassingham Church, drink and biscuits . Everyone welcome  

@ @ @

Witham St Hughs Primary School Meet the New Headteacher 

My name is Neil Spencelayh and I am writing to introduce myself as the new Headteacher of Witham St Hughs Primary School. I will be taking up my post this Easter, and will be initially based at County Offices in Lincoln until the school building is completed in August, ready for a September 2006 opening. I am very excited about the opportunities and challenges involved in opening a new school, and of creating a school which provides a high quality, rounded education for all children. 

For the past 14 years I have lived in Lincoln with my wife Nicola and, more recently, our two young children Ethan (4) and Roan (1). I was brought up in the North Eastern town of Hartlepool, and moved to Lincoln when I began my teacher training course at Bishop Grosseteste College, specialising in mathematics and technology. I have previously worked at Ermine Junior School and Hartsholme Primary School. In January 2004 I took up my current post as Headteacher of Spitalgate C of E Primary School in Grantham, which has recently been through a successful OFSTED inspection. 

I am looking forward to meeting and working with members of the Witham St Hughs community and surrounding areas in the near future. If you require any further information about the school or would like to pass on any views about how you would like to see the school develop, please do not hesitate to contact me either at my current place of work or, after Easter, via County Offices. Neil Spencelayh

@ @ @

Project-Community Caring in Bassingham

Bassingham St Michael’s Social Group has received the following Grants from RACoL and they have asked us to publish the fact as the EU funds them.

On the 14/09/04 we were given £5,000 towards a £6,250 project  
Kitchen updated £1632.00
Hostess trolley £225.00
4 Tables (2 second hand) £285.65
16 Plastic Chairs £135.00
Audio System £4284.00
Outdoor bench £69.00
Total       £6510.65

This allows us to cater for Community meals for up to 50 people, on themes such as Harvest and Curry evenings. The chairs allow for up to 150 people at Concerts. The Audio System is used at Concerts and for the School assemblies. The bench, as we are in front of the Nursing Home and have the only public access to the river at the South side of the Village, is there for all to use.

On the 03/01/06 we have been offered £1198 towards a project of  £1612.97, this includes:
Portable Ramp for wheelchair access £170.00
3 Part Screens for displays £349.00
Flip Chart for Buggy Group £76.73
4 Cycle stands for 8 bicycles on a base £1017.60
Total      £1613.33

The ramp will allow people in wheelchairs to access the Alter and the outside toilet under the Equal Opportunities Act. The Screen will be used for, tourism, cycle routes, local walks, gardens open, literature on certain illnesses MS, Leukaemia, Diabetes ect. so that support groups can be formed. We are based in St Michael's church Bassingham but serve the 8 Communities covered by the Witham Staple. To quote "the church is the only organization in business for it's non-members".
We are grateful to Sue Wray and now Suzanna Saunter for their help.

@ @ @

Bassingham Playpark Project An update and an Appeal 

As you are aware, a group of 4 volunteers has come together to look at the refurbishment of the Village Play Park, which is looking very tired. Essentially, the aim of this project is to replace some of the children's play equipment, install safety surfacing and seating.

The project is shortly to reach its first milestone in that comprehensive applications for grant funding are soon to be completed and submitted to the relevant organisations. This process has taken several months and has involved input from Bassingham School children and various youth groups and advice from local authorities, play equipment providers and the Police. The target figure that we need to raise is in the order of £50,000, the bulk of which we hope will come from grant applications. In addition, various fund raising activities will soon be competing for your attention! Details will be given in future issues of this magazine. We would be grateful for your support at these events.

We have agonised about investing time and money into a project that may risk the "amusement" of a small minority who see fit to vandalise the village's facilities. However, we are pleased to see the presence and actions of our new Police Community Support Officers who are as determined as we are that the mindless behaviour of a handful of youths should not spoil it for the rest of the village. We cannot let the problem of potential vandalism stop our efforts in securing better play equipment for the young children who want and need it. It is the responsibility of everyone who sees anti-social behaviour to report it accordingly.

For the project to be a success, we would welcome a few more bodies to help with some of the legwork - be it with grant application paperwork, helping with phone-calls, fundraising ideas etc. A little help goes a long way!

Anyone who feels they can offer support to us in any way or can pledge their help for fundraising activities in the future, please contact Steve Gilman.

@ @ @

Attendance At Police Surgeries 
In March Nick and I completed our series of Police Surgeries at six venues in our area. Yours being: Norton Disney, Bassingham and Witham St Hughes.

 

Attendance was quite poor and was generally 4/5 people per venue.

 

We would have liked an average of at least 10 people to make this a monthly occurrence. I realise that many people are precluded from attending due to work and we shall be reviewing times/dates/venues and will probably look at this as a bi-monthly event.

 

I would like to thank all the people who took the time and effort to visit and introduce themselves to us and I would also like to thank all the people who helped us at the venues concerned. We were made very welcome and were generally well catered for.

Many thanks PC 89 Paul Truelove & PCSO 2068 Nick Stenner

@ @ @

Supplementary Waste Collection Service (Update) 

North Kesteven District Council are to spend the £50,000 from Lincolnshire County Council (given to offset the Saturday supplementary waste service) on mobile covert CCTV equipment, to be sited where fly tipping is a particular nuisance. 

NKDC have also decided to cut the cost of the bulky waste collection service, from April :3 items are being reduced from £12 to £6 and 4-6 items will now cost £12. This will be reviewed after one year as the LCC contribution was a "one-off" sum.

Cllr. Pat Woodman NKDC Bassingham Ward

Back to top of page

@ @ @

May 2006

Christian Aid Week 14th to 20th May 

Christian Aid week is upon us again. From 14th May a volunteer will be calling on you with an envelope. Please give generously as every little helps to benefit people around the world. Many people struggle against drought, illness, and war and have no power or control over their lives. The money raised together with strong individuals who volunteer to physically help the poor, can give people back some dignity and command over their lives, making a difference to their existence. The charity would appreciate your help by collecting envelopes. We, as yet, have no volunteers at Witham St Hughs. Make a difference? You only have to offer a few hours once a year to collect in your area. As a local community we all try to pull together. 

So please can someone come forward now and offer their help. 

@ @ @

Bassingham Heritage Room - Support Needed For Events

The entirely voluntary Management Group has updated the CCTV installation, which is now more efficient and better placed. We have also ordered two storage heaters, similar to the ones in the Craft Room, to replace the old heaters in the Heritage Room. Our next project has yet to be decided, but is likely to be the improvement of the lighting. This all costs quite a lot of money, which we can only raise with your support, we have no income as such, so please come along and do just that, support us! We can only arrange for speakers when we can afford to pay them, and we can only pay them when you pay your (minimal £1) entrance fee to listen to them. 

We have two very pleasant evenings planned this month:

"From Dynasty to B & Q" Tuesday 2nd May 7.30pm Reflections on a Holiday in China. An illustrated talk by John and Thelma Rowland

"Granny's Attic" Wednesday 24th May at 7.30pm A talk and quiz by Rodney Cousins, a regular and popular speaker, on slightly different things that might have come from granny's attic.

The entrance to these events is £1 payable at the door which includes refreshments, and a raffle.

@ @ @

Witham St Hughs Needs Your Help! 

Wherever you live in Witham St Hughs whether it be former RAF properties or a newly built house, you will be very aware that Witham St Hughs is growing at an amazing pace. It must be very exciting to be in on an entirely new community and watch it taking shape around you. At the moment the developments are in the midst of a very busy building phase: it's not immediately obvious which houses are already occupied and which are not. You don't know who all your neighbours are going to be because some of them haven't yet arrived! 

Witham St Hughs Parish Council and The Witham Staple hope that those of you already here are settling in happily and beginning to feel at home. We hope too that you are finding your copy of The Witham Staple interesting and helpful. It's a community magazine produced by people living in our eight villages and delivered free to every household for the beginning of every month (July & August / December & January are double issues). Your copy is likely to be delivered by somebody who lives nearby. 

We believe that The Witham Staple can play its part in helping Witham St Hughs grow as a new community and as it grows so it needs your help. We are always on the look out for people who are interested in finding out how they can get involved with the magazine. You might, for instance, be able to help with collating or even just deliver the magazine to the houses on your Street. 

If you'd like to know more, or help in any way please contact Stan Underwood on 788461 or Lorraine Moxon on 869306. 

@ @ @

Aubourn & Haddington Playground 

For the past 3 years our Playground has been funded by local residents. It has not been taken from your council tax, but through the generosity of people attending our fundraising events. We are very pleased with what we have achieved to date and would like to thank those who have given their support. 

In order for the playground to continue we need funding for safety checks, insurance and maintenance of equipment. In light of all the new arrivals to the village, we are also in desperate need of some toddler swings. This means continued support from local residents, particularly involvement with, and attendance to organised fundraising events. 

Unfortunately, if this support is not received, the playground committee may be forced to disband, meaning the loss of your children's playground. As an association we try to hold a variety of events so that all of the villagers can feel they can participate, even if they don't have children. I do hope you all feel that you are welcome to any of the events we hold. 

Would you like to join our 50/50 monthly draw? This comprises of a lucky number being drawn, with 50% of funds raised being allocated in prizes and 50% going to help with maintenance and insurance of playground equipment. If you would like to become a member, it's a £1 per month charge, collected every six months. Please speak to Charlotte on 789017, Louise on 788223, or any other member of the playground committee to join. 

Our next planned event is A Family Beetle Drive, Saturday 6th May 2pm to 4pm At the Aubourn Enterprise Centre £2.50 per child and £1.00 per adult. Refreshments available. Everyone Welcome look out for details of our forthcoming Summer events, which include an evening Summer Dance and a Family Picnic afternoon.

@ @ @

Bassingham Playpark Update

Firstly, a big Thank You to all who have supported recent fundraising activities of the group. Keith Sparrow recently took part in the Lincoln 10K race on 2nd April and raised approx £300 via your sponsorship. Thanks to Mr Robertson for allowing a non-uniform day at Bassingham Primary School for which children paid £1 with proceeds going to the project. We also had a small but dedicated bunch of dice throwers for the first of our Beetle Drives which was held one Tuesday afternoon in the Heritage Centre raising approx £40. Look out for details of the next one (lots of home-made cakes). 

Recent weeks have seen consultations with local children's groups, Cubs, Brownies, Toddlers etc, and this, combined with the earlier questionnaire conducted with the school children, has re-affirmed the necessity for the proposed play park improvements and in particular, 
created a wish list for certain pieces of equipment. 

We have also had various play equipment companies survey the site and offer their expertise. The 'project plan' document (required to accompany the various grant applications) is currently being prepared and we are also aiming to address the accessibility of the site in line with the Disability Discrimination Act. This is driving up the cost of the project, which is now estimated to be in the region of £70,000 plus VAT. (Unlike the recent article in the Lincs Echo which suggested a budget of £500,000 - if only!!!!!)


Volunteers within our group have also attended various fundraising seminars and consulted with various grant officers etc. We aim to source local business sponsorship and funding via grant applications - form filling is already underway! One of the main criteria for grant funding is community support so please look out for and support future fundraising activities. These will include a quiz, Beetle Drive and tabletop sale in the near future. Please also start now to save 
up your loose change for our stall(s) at the village show in August!

A copy of a possible layout was presented at the Annual Parish meeting held on the 13th April. A copy of this initial scheme (kindly prepared by Wicksteed) will be displayed on the parish council notice board. Please let us have your comments on this so we can develop 
it accordingly and tailor it to your needs. 

If anyone has any particular ideas, experience or indeed wishes to help in any way please, please, please contact either Steve Gilman 789072 or Sarah Coulson 789689. We are still only a group of four!!!! 

@ @ @

Norton Disney and Other D'Isney Links

Now that the days are lengthening, exploration of the surrounding countryside again becomes a more general pastime. Those who are familiar with the Disney links in the county will no doubt be aware of Kingerby in North Lincs. For others however it is a delight still to come. From Lincoln on the A15, Kingerby can be reached off the A631, as it progresses in the direction of Market Rasen.

Remote is something that sadly few places can still lay claim to be. At Kingerby however, this is still the case, even if mainly in an atmospheric sense.

Kingerby is an ancient settlement area, having first been noticeably developed by the Romans and subsequently the Vikings, much later 17th century dwellings still exist in the area, notably Beech House, former vicarage. There are also a number of stone curiosities it is best to discover for oneself!

The Disneys of Norton Disney held the manor of Kingerby in the 14th and 15th centuries. The village Church of St Peter is also the final resting place of what are believed to be two Sir William Disneys, father and son. Their stone tombs are resplendent with the forms of two 14th century knights, suitably dressed in carved armour and other medieval trappings.

The 12th century church rises from the protection of evergreens and tall trees that appear to whisper the secrets and sometimes violent history of ancient times. Now however, it is a wonderfully peaceful place, bejewelled with tiny 14th century stained glass windows depicting two Christian martyrs - St Catherine and St. Cecilia. It is interesting that both the churches at Norton Disney and Kingerby, linked by the D'isneys are both dedicated to St Peter. Did that Saint have a particular importance for the Disney family, or for Lincolnshire - perhaps others will know! St Peter's Kingerby is under the protection of The Churches Conservation Trust.       

@ @ @

Lincolnshire Police Community Panel Meeting 3rd April
Meeting held at Oliver Roper Venue, Thorpe on the Hill.
The minutes of the last meeting were agreed. PC Truelove read out his report regarding the work that the Community Beat Team had undertaken since the last meeting.

Priority One 
To summarise PC Truelove stated that 11 Fixed Penalty Notices had been issued for excessive speed in rural villages and 64 Motorists had been stopped and warned about their speed.
Letters had gone out to 7 schools in our area with regard to parking problems. 8 Fixed Penalty Notices had been issued for parking offences in and around the schools and one Notice of Intended Prosecution summons. Bassingham School was highlighted as not being included and would be pursued. PC Truelove stated that enforcement of vehicles obstructing footpaths had not yet started - but this problem would be looked at over the next period.  

Priority Two
Youth disorder patrols had been conducted on a regular basis throughout the villages and PC Truelove stated that at the moment things were fairly quiet and there were no significant problems to report. 
The Community Panel confirmed that they were happy with the Police action and response to the priorities. It was agreed that the priorities would remain the same for the next two months.

Other Matters
PC Truelove stated that two members of the Special Constabulary had recently joined the Community Beat Team, Ron Hodgson and Dave Thomson. Both are local residents in the area and we look forward to their help and support for our area.

PC Truelove stated that further Police Surgeries would be held at the end of May and advertised in local magazines. Dangerous driving incidents were also discussed.

Back to top of page

@ @ @

June 2006

Editorial: To Celebrate 40 years of local news and events

" Some people are on the pitch, they think it's all over! It is now."
But however, for the magazine just the humble start of what is today The Witham Staple you are reading now. Yes it's been 40 years since the then Rector Canon Colin Evans first wrote a newsletter for the parishes after the coming together of the six local parish churches. 1966, England had just won the World Cup, the Queen had turned 40, The Beetles were breaking records and girls hearts, Harold Wilson was elected, Go Go Boots were in and Mini Skirts too (how short would they go) Tiny Tears and Action Man were the must have toy. I'm sure there'll be something close to you that you can think of. On the other hand as for me though, I'm afraid I wasn't even the twinkle in my mother's eye yet. The other slightly smaller celebration this month is the fact that I have been your Editor for a year now and seeing as I didn't resign at the AGM last month you'll have to put up with me a bit longer. Thank you to you all for your thoughts, comments and patience over the last year while I settled in to my new roll and may we spend many more together.

OK. Hi how are you all, no doubt enjoying the warmer weather. It's getting to the time of year where events are plenty, being planned and finalized and from details I have for the magazine something for everyone to look forward to over the summer months. As ever without you, these events don't succeed so give them your time and support and make their achievements something to remember. Till next month be good.

"Adios" The Editor

@ @ @

40th Anniversary of the Witham Staple

 

The Witham Staple can trace its history back over 40 years to a simple single-sheet newsletter written by the then Rector of Bassingham, Canon Colin Evans. The first copy of the "Newsletter" was published in 1966, the year that saw the six local churches formed into a group. Since then The Witham Staple, as it has been styled since 1984, has developed and grown into what it is today: a high quality community magazine, serving the eight local villages. During its long period of development many people have been involved in its production. Mrs Worsdall and Sheila Mullen were two long-standing editors in the early days. More recently, Stan Underwood retired last year after twelve years as Editor. The early copies of the magazine were printed on a hand-turned Gestetner printer in the Old School House opposite St Michael's Church in Bassingham. In the depths of winter, the operators would huddle round their meagre source of heat to keep the ink flowing and to keep themselves warm! At that time the magazine was put together by individuals in their own homes and the circulation was something in the order of 350 copies. 

 

Some fifteen years ago, The Witham Staple was at a point of crisis and in danger of disappearing. A group of willing people rallied round and at this point John Rowland became chairman of the newly formed Witham Staple Committee. (John handed over to the present Chairman, Mike Allport, in 2003.) The committee determined to secure the long-term future of the magazine by placing it on a professional and self-funding basis. Grants were secured from North Kesteven District Council and from local parish councils, donations from various local clubs and societies, and contributions from individual members of the community. From this we built a solid financial foundation, which has enabled the magazine to be completely self-funding for all its requirements. 

 

The addition of Witham St Hughs to the Witham Staple 'family' since the year 2000 has proved to be of major significance, not least of all logistically, as we now see the new village growing bigger by the week. Over the last several years, further grant funding has enabled the purchase of additional equipment, for the production of copy, for printing, collating, booklet making, and business administration. The printing, collating and purpose-built storage is now located at Bassingham Heritage Room, with further work done at Witham St Hughs. 

 

Today, the magazine has the size of operation of a small business. A major feature continues to be the judicious balance of fresh monthly copy with a considerable number of mostly local commercial advertisements, which are re-set six-monthly. There is always a keen demand for advertising space, and this is the prime source of our income, allowing us in turn to continue our policy of not charging local residents for The Witham Staple. The current print run is of the order of 1,800 copies, and each month the production of the magazine accounts for something in the order of 20 man/woman/machine-hours, not including delivery time. 

 

Today The Witham Staple has well achieved the aims of the original committee. It is a highly professional publication, and serves the needs of the community by providing the key means of communicating local information and items of local interest to every household in the eight villages. It is right up-to-date in terms of information technology with the launch of The Witham Staple website in November 2004, making it accessible worldwide. So, a community magazine run for the community by the community: a principle that will confidently ensure the continuing success of the magazine in the years to come. 

 

Stan Underwood

@ @ @

Witham St Hughs Primary School - Logo

Do you wish to make a lasting contribution towards Witham St Hughs Primary School? If so, we would like to invite you to design a logo for Witham St Hughs Primary School. The logo will be the official symbol used to represent our school and will be used on a wide range of items including school letterheads, uniform and school signage.

If you have any ideas as to what the logo should look like, then we would love to hear from you. All contributions greatly appreciated.

To discuss this further or to ask any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me.

Thank you, Neil Spencelayh Headteacher, Witham St Hughs Primary School.

@ @ @

Bassingham Scarecrow Festival 2006 

We are having our scarecrow exhibition in association with the Open Gardens. Saturday 17th and Sunday 18th June 

Our theme is Children's books 

Please let us know if you would like to join in the fun and make a scarecrow. 

Let us know who your scarecrow will be and where you live so as to avoid duplicates and to allow us to make a scarecrow trail map. 

@ @ @

RAF Cadets Help At Bassingham Churchyard 

12 Cadets from the Royal Air Force College provided the muscle to help clear the churchyard of St Michael's Church, Bassingham on Saturday 8th April. Local farmer, George Marsh provided the tractor and trailer to take away 3 trailer loads of arisings. 

The yew trees have been cleared of the ivy that was throttling them, gravestones were cleaned, snowdrops were lifted, divided and replanted and we can now see views and have better access than ever before. 

 

A big thank you to all those who helped.

@ @ @

Monthly Police Surgeries -Tuesday 6th June 2006

Carlton le Moorland at The Village Hall from 4pm to 6pm moving on to The Enterprise Centre in Aubourn from 6.45pm to 8.45pm PC Truelove & PCSO Stenner are holding police surgeries throughout your area. So if you have a problem, however big or small & would like to discuss this with your local Officers, then please drop in to one of the sites listed above.

We look forward to seeing many people on the day and welcome villagers of all ages.

Many Thanks PC Truelove & PCSO Stenner.

Back to top of page

@ @ @

July /August 2006

Editorial

The summer double issue the birds are singing the grass is growing and the heat has been turned up. Summer time! There seems to have been a sudden change from cold to hot, an array of flourishing plant life, the sight of lambs jumping about in the fields, young fledgling feeding on the lawn, parents coaching them into the art of flying. Swallow, swift and house martin sore high in the sky, ramblers and cyclists much to do and even more to see. We have got to the time of year where school ends. For some the end of Primary School, growing up and off to Secondary in September. Do you remember their first day and wonder where time goes. Holidays for the lucky ones and being a rural area there's a few fields to harvest. Those unmistakable sights and sounds from dawn to dusk and after. Bringing home the rewards of a good harvest. We won't mention the football thing that's going on at the moment because it might be all over (hope not) by the time you're reading this and some of you aren't so keen on it anyhow. So without any more nonsense remember lots of fluids plenty of sun cream, the odd ice cream and most importantly enjoy yourselves.

@ @ @

1st Bassingham Scout Group Leaders Wanted 

A great opportunity to join a thriving local organisation.

Leader required to run the 1st Bassingham Beaver Colony on a Wednesday Night (term time). The Colony is well established with 12 Beavers and an enthusiastic Assistant Leader in place. The post becomes available from the start of September and needs to be filled to prevent the Colony from folding. 

Help needed for Bassingham Scouts. Bassingham Scouts troop needs help. The number of scouts has risen such that two leaders are required for the troop to operate within the Scout association guidelines. An assistant leader is needed not only to ensure that a range of activities are run safely, but also in case of accidents. Currently we have a number of parents who help once or twice a term, but unless they are registered by the Scout Association, they cannot legally be left alone with Scouts. So without at least one other leader the scout troop may be required to halve the number of scouts, or close completely. The commitment needed by adults is relatively small? Attending the meetings on a Thursday evening for 90 minutes, and a planning meeting every two months. If you are able to help even if it's alternate weeks, please contact Tony Davis, Scout Leader on 789365 for further details.

@ @ @

Carlton-le-Moorland Manor Lane Playground 1997 

Preliminary Notice 

The Managing Trustees are pleased to announce that a completion date of 27th June 2006 has now been set for the sale of the Manor Lane Playground, Carlton-le-Moorland. All proceeds after incurred costs will be invested according to the Governing Document and under the guidance of the Charity Commission.

Thanks to many people in the parish who have recognised the Managing Trustees hard work and supported them in their legal obligations and charitable endeavours.

David Merchant, Chairman

@ @ @

Norton Disney Woodland Under Threat 

Many of you will know that CEMEX have made a planning application to fell and quarry Norton Low Wood. Norton Disney Parish Council and residents have petitioned and written to the County Council to oppose the application. There has been huge support from residents of the surrounding villages, and we would like to thank you for all the letters and signatures received so far.

Norton Low Wood is important for its aesthetic and ecological value. It is the habitat and feeding ground for many creatures and is listed as a County Wildlife Site for its areas of heath land. In 2004 the District Council placed a Tree Preservation Order on the site and the owners agreed a management plan with the Forestry Commission after years of neglect. At the time CEMEX stated that they had always supported that the woodland remains and, as a responsible landowner, would continue to manage the wood for future generations. Unfortunately this seems to have been quickly forgotten.

Please show your further support by writing to your County Councillor (details contained in this magazine) asking him to oppose the planning application.

For additional information you can contact any member of Norton Disney Parish Council or drop me an e-mail to :- moll103@aol.com

Ian Daykin

....

Letter Reply 16 August 2006: Norton Low Wood Applications 

I refer to the recent article entitled 'Norton Disney Woodland Under Threat' written by Ian Daykin, and published in your journal on the 4th July 2006. 

I represent the Applicant, CEMEX UK Materials Ltd in relation to the submissions in question. I am not writing to you however to promote the current proposals or to question My Daykin's opposition to them. My purpose is to correct factual inaccuracies contained in the report concerning alleged statements that CEMEX have purportedly previously stated. 

The remarks in question seem to have been taken from an earlier response to North Kesteven Council by CEMEX concerning the imposition of a Tree Preservation Order on Low Wood and Tonges Plantation by the Authority. In fact they were specifically made by CEMEX in relation to Tonges Plantation and not Low Wood. I would be very happy to provide to you the text if you consider that this would be helpful. The suggestion therefore that the company has 'quickly forgotten' anything is disingenuous. 

May I reassure your readers that there is absolutely no intention to remove the woodland in the Tonges Plantation. The minerals proposals relate to the area that it is subject to a Commercial Felling Programme only. 

I trust that this clarifies the position. 

Yours sincerely
Mark Kelly
Principal Planner

Alliance Environment & Planning Ltd
Wharf House, Wharf Road, Guildford, Surrey GU1 4RP
 

@ @ @

Bassingham Scarecrows & Open Gardens 

Photographs of the successful Bassingham Scarecrow Festival and Open Gardens events of 17th and 18th June are posted on this site.

Open Gardens

The hard work and skill of the exhibitors were much appreciated by all those who viewed them. Well done for some great displays!"

@ @ @

Lincoln Diocesan Guild Of Church Bell Ringers 

The Church of St Michael & All Angels Bassingham On Tuesday 16th May 2006, a Peal of 5,080 changes of "Grandsire Doubles" was rung by local ringers in 2 hours 51 minutes. 

 

This was the first peal in this method to be rung at Bassingham and was in celebration of: 

The 80th Birthday of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 

The 40th Anniversary of the Bassingham Group of Churches 

The 80th Anniversary of the re-casting and re-hanging of the bells of St Michael & All Angels Church, Bassingham.

@ @ @

Police: Changes In Boundaries

Community Beat Team (North Hykeham Rural) 

 

Last month saw a change in the area that Nick and I currently manage. Resulting in a temporary undertaking of Brant Broughton, Stragglethorpe, Beckingham, Stapleford and surrounding hamlets. Temporarily, because it has been decided by management within Lincolnshire Police that there will be a new Community Beat Team for this area, with the post of Community Beat Manager being advertised within Lincoln Division, which now encompasses Sleaford.

 

Therefore, hopefully, in the next few months we will see a new Police Officer in charge of this area, which will include the above areas and also take in Bassingham, Carlton-Le-Moorland, Thurlby, Norton Disney, Leadenham and Welbourn.

 

We also have a new Police Community Support Officer Chris Boyle, who has been with us since the 5th June, he will be working with Nick and I for the time being. But, ultimately he will be part of this new Community Beat Team, when a manager is in post.

 

I will be sorry to loose the close ties I have built up with Bassingham, Carlton-Le-Moorland, Thurlby and Norton Disney, in the time I have been policing this community. But, for the time being, will continue to work closely with these villages to better our communities.

 

The fine details are yet to be decided, I will report any further news to you as soon as I receive it and would like to take this opportunity to welcome the new villages to our team.

PC Paul Truelove

@ @ @

Lincolnshire Police Public Information Community Panel Meeting

5th June 2006

PC Truelove gave his report with regard to the Police activity since the last meeting and they are as follows: -

Excessive Speed. 23 Fixed Penalty Notices had been issued for excessive speed in rural villages and 103 Motorists had been stopped and warned about their speed.

Parking at Schools. The Community Beat Team have noticed a significant improvement in the way that parents now park their vehicles when picking up/dropping off children at local schools. As a result, only 3 Fixed Penalty Notices had been issued for parking offences in and around the schools.

General Parking. Enforcement of vehicles obstructing footpaths has just started. At the moment the team are placing warning notices on vehicles that are obstructing the footpaths. 28 notices have been issued. Two 3 Fixed Penalty Notices have been issued to vehicles causing a persistent problem.

Youth disorder. Patrols have been conducted on a regular basis throughout the villages. To date, the increase in daylight and temperature has not yet resulted in an increase in disorder problems and anti-social behaviour.

Other Matters. There are some dramatic changes ahead of us over the next few months. Firstly, the team have acquired several new villages in the last month, including Brant Broughton, Beckingham, Stapleford and Stragglethorpe. Our new PCSO, Chris Boyle, has today joined our team and we look forward to working with him. Unfortunately we will be losing him from our team when a new Community Beat Team is in place, which will take from us a number of villages including Aubourn, Haddington, Witham St Hughes, Bassingham, Thurlby, Carlton-Le-Moorland, Norton Disney and the villages mentioned above. This will obviously impact on the Community Panel and we will have to plan and make arrangements for this when the change over takes place.

We would also like to welcome a further member of the Special Constabulary to the Community Beat Team - Matt Dickinson. Further Police Surgeries are being held over the next few days and have been advertised in the respective local magazines.

Other meeting matters. Various local topics were then discussed including local crimes of interest, anti-social behaviour, fly-tipping, problems with unregistered motorcycles and quad bikes, dangerous driving and drink driving.

The consensus of opinion was that the current enforcement on speed had little impact on the traffic through rural villages.

PC Truelove stated that parking enforcement would be stepped up and that liaison with Highways to improve the road and parking environment outside schools would be addressed as a priority, along with enforcement.

New Third Priority. This being involvement between the Community Team and local schools to address and heighten the awareness of school children in Road Safety and Cycling proficiency. The panel then discussed their own recent experiences of young children having very little or no awareness of the dangers associated with traffic on the roads when they are on foot or riding cycles. It was unanimously decided that a letter should be drafted and sent to all schools in the community with a view to the children getting a Police input with regard to basic Road Safety, prior to the end of the school term.

@ @ @

Roger Chaplin's Bird List 

Roger lives in Carlton Le Moorland and compiles a monthly bird list mainly around the areas of Carlton and Norton Disney, in particular from his garden in Westhall Close and on his journey to work at the quarry area of Norton Disney. One of the main reasons for the list is to monitor the rise or decline of bird life around the quarrying industry.

Back to top of page

@ @ @

September 2006

Vulcan Bomber

Vulcan Bomber by: Paul Hubbard

Will we see and hear the Vulcan over the skies of Lincolnshire again? As we go to print, the one remaining aircraft is nearing the completion of a full restoration to enable it to fly once again; however, despite a huge fundraising effort, the enthusiastic team of engineers and aircrew are still in need of considerable extra funding. It would be a tragedy if this magnificent aircraft, which did so much to project Britain's military capability for 30 years during the Cold-War period, did not take to the skies again in a similar fashion to our older great bomber, the Lancaster.

@ @ @

The Witham Staple Cover Design Competition 

Conglatulations To:

Georgina Spray………seven years and under 

India Moore……..………eight to eleven years 

Alice de Mooy….….…..twelve to fifteen years 

Well done to these young people and thank you to all who entered. The winning designs will be used for the cover of The Witham Staple over the next six months.

@ @ @

The Witham Staple 40th Anniversary Celebration

The Witham Staple party held in July was to enable all those involved in the preparation and distribution of the magazine to meet up. Also to celebrate the magazine's anniversary with a cake and a display of past issues. Mike and Bunny Allport kindly hosted this event in their garden and as usual were excellent hosts.

A good crowd of us enjoyed the food, wine and opportunity to chat. Mike Allport thanked all of those involved with the magazine for their contribution in making it such a successful and valued asset for our community. We were all fortunate that the thunder and rain stopped just in time for the event to provide a pleasant summer evening.

Jan Culpitt, as the longest serving committee member and our current secretary, had the honour of cutting the cakes celebrating the anniversary. To provide us with an idea of how far the magazine had evolved, Stan Underwood prepared a display of ten example issues from across the 40 years. As well as illustrating the extent to which we have embraced new technology as it has become available, this display also highlighted the high quality of the content produced in the early editions when the whole process was very much a handcrafted and time-consuming exercise.

See some photographs of the event.

@ @ @

Witham St Hughs Questionnaire Results 

One Hundred and eight people completed the Witham St Hughs Questionnaire earlier this year. The results told us that only 39% of people who responded knew that there was a community venue called the Ark and of those even less knew where it was or how to get to it. Very few young people and older people knew about it - possibly due to the lack of suitably pitched activities that go on there. When asked why people did not visit the Ark, the vast majority of people stated that they did not know what goes on there.

When asked what services people wanted in the village, the highest percentages showed a doctors surgery, shop, cycle paths, library services, post office and walking routes. Also popular was a post box, pub and monthly skip. In terms of activities; exercise classes and social events were high on people's wish list but there were a number of other clubs and community groups that would thrive in Witham St Hughs such as a History Group.

Twenty-six people expressed an interest in joining or running a club or volunteering their skills for the benefit of the community. Some of the skills on offer are; vehicle maintenance, yoga, working with children, teaching, job seeking, air cadets, teaching languages, bingo calling, cleaning out ponds and line dancing.

The RACoL Community Development Officer attended the Parish Council meeting on the 15th August to discuss the results of the questionnaire and possibilities for implementing requests from residents. Following this meeting on the 13th September there will be a community meeting in the Ark, Witham St Hughs to discuss setting up clubs and organising social events. All are welcome.

@ @ @

Lightning Strikes Twice In Bassingham 

The north end of Bassingham feels distinctly under fire this summer and two unfortunate households have borne the brunt of two separate lightning strikes that have caused extensive damage to their houses. Two spells of hot weather had stings in their tails.

About 5.30 pm on Monday 16th June (2006) the Williams household on Lincoln Road was the first to suffer. Their chimney was destroyed, many of their roof tiles landed in the front garden and an upstairs ceiling partially collapsed. The owners were in their living room when the lightning struck and were lucky to escape injury. The damage took some six weeks to repair. Several surrounding houses also had telephone, internet and TV connections and equipment damaged.

If this was not bad enough worse was to follow in the early hours of the morning of Thursday 27th July (2006) for the Garner family in Badgers Oak. At about 2.35 am a lightning bolt burst through the roof and set the attic alight. The fire soon penetrated the roof with flames leaping into the night sky. By the time the fire brigade had arrived the fire had progressed to the upper floor and took about an hour to control and subside.

The speed with which the fire progressed horrified the helpless neighbours who could only stand and watch. The upper part of the house was completely gutted by fire, with just a few charred roof beams remaining upright by morning. The lower floor was also badly damaged by water.

Fortunately the Garner family were away from the house at the time and no one was injured in the incident. However, they are now in the position of having lost most of their home and possessions and have the grim task of renovations, which will take some time to complete. All their neighbours, of course, wish them well in this process and realise that it could so easily have been their homes that were so dramatically damaged by these incidents. Certainly the next time there is a storm in Bassingham there will be some anxious residents.

@ @ @

Les Baker - A Village Character 

 

I lived opposite Les for 25 years. You could always tell when he was up and about, since you could hear him putting together his latest bird table, trellis or rabbit hutch or listen to the steady chopping of firewood. He could usually be found providing enquirers with bags of sticks, lengths of timber, nails, screws or garden tools that he had repaired himself. If you needed something to complete a job the stock reply from anyone you approached would be - "Have you seen Les?" He would go to any length of trouble to find what you wanted and in the process have a yarn, trade gossip or draw out a few unusual items for you to identify!

One particular incident I remember was the occasion Les' Great Cycle Ride on Good Friday 2003 - by which time he was in his early eighties. As I chatted to him the following day he asked if I'd seen him on his bike. I told him I'd been away all day. He went on to say that someone had waved to him but he had been unable to wave back - because he couldn't let go of the handlebars! I asked him what he'd been doing on a bike and he told me. It was Good Friday, it was a nice day and he remembered that he'd got a bike up in his it for his wife one Christmas. She'd ridden it around the yard a couple of times and never went on it again. So the bike had never been on the road! It was never looked at again till Les got it down - and he hadn't ridden a bike for forty years! After pumping up the tyres he set off around the village - not daring to acknowledge when people waved to him. Having got back to his house in one piece he decided on a longer excursion, so set off up Rinks Lane. On arriving at the T- junction he thought to himself, "I might as well go to Joan's in Stapleford." So he carried on and eventually arrived to be met by a surprised and rather concerned Joan. She said she would drive him back to Bassingham. "No," said Les, "I came by bike and I'm going back by bike." And so he did - but had to work harder against the head wind. His only regret was that the bike hadn't got power steering!" I feel better for it too," said Les in conclusion, "and it's really loosened my legs up!"

So that was the Les I remember - hardworking, generous, jovial, always putting himself out for folks………and very determined and single-minded when he wanted to be!

Barry Leverett

@ @ @

Hummingbird Hawk Moth & Musk Beetle Sighted 

 

On 19th July (2006), Michael & Christine Herod of Linga Lane Bassingham sighted this impressive moth hovering amongst their Phlox. A letter to the Lincolnshire Echo from B. Taylor of Aubourn (28 July) suggests it was hovering there amongst the geraniums. D. Rowland of Bassingham caught one on camera in August and the picture was printed together with an article in the Lincolnshire Echo on 12th August.

From the RSPB website (www.rspb.org.uk) I have gleaned the following information:

"It is so named as it can be easily mistaken for a hummingbird as it hovers, probing flowers for nectar with its long proboscis. In fact, it is smaller than any hummingbird.

The wings beat so fast they make an audible hum. They fly during the day and can be seen throughout lowland Britain in the summer. Hummingbird hawk moths cannot survive the British winter, so migrate to and from southern Europe in autumn and spring.

The caterpillars, about 50 mm long, are colourful. They have a green or reddish-brown body with white dots, white, dark and yellow horizontal stripes and a blue, yellow-tipped horn".

I have placed an image of it on our website together with some more information on butterflies and moths (see the wildlife page). There is also an item and pictures on that web page about the rare musk beetle, also recently sighted by the Herods in Bassingham.

Back to top of page

@ @ @

October 2006

Editorial

Everyone must take time to sit and watch the leaves turn. 

- Elizabeth Lawrence 

Some of the strangest coincidences of all are to be found as patterns of numbers in the Bible. Psalm 118 is the Bible's middle chapter. Just before it, Psalm 117 is the Bible's shortest chapter. Just after it, Psalm 119 is the longest. The Bible has 594 chapters before Psalm 118 and 594 chapters after it. If you add up all the chapters except Psalm 118, you get 1188 chapters. If you take the number1188 and interpret it as chapter 118 of Psalm, verse 8, you will find the middle verse of the entire Bible, "it is better to trust in the Lord than to put confidence in man". Some would say that this is the central message of the Bible - and not just numerically

Welcome to this month's issue. How are you all? October is now upon us and Autumn just to come. The crops are safely harvested and nicely gathered in so the celebrations of seasonal suppers can now begin. The leaves will start falling down, the gardens getting bare. There is still, however, lots to do, a bit of tiding here and weeding over there, planting early bulbs for us and spring to share. Dusk is getting earlier and the clocks will need bringing back. The scary time of Halloween trick or treat and all that game. October seems a busy month but don't stop here, read on and find out more because there's plenty left still to come, of that there is no fear. Until next month to leave you with a simple little thought 86 days to Christmas, "that's left you looking fraught". 

@ @ @

A Spring Show For Carlton Le Moorland 

 

It has been suggested that the Carlton le Moorland Spring Show should be resurrected next year. This was held for quite a number of years up to and including 2001 by the Carlton le Moorland and District Gardening Club. The club was discontinued after the 2001 show due to lack of support and the funds were shared between two charities. A number of people have said what a good idea it would be to have a show but it is not intended to start the club again. All the details of the last show schedule are available so it could be easily adapted. People living in all the local villages will be eligible to enter the show. There will be a get together in Carlton le Moorland Village Hall on Wednesday 4th October at 8pm to find out whether there is any interest in this suggestion. Everyone welcome. 

Stella Postlethwaite, Barbara Smith and Jane Hubbard

@ @ @

There Will Be No Bassingham Show In 2007!

The above is not yet a fact but it is a distinct possibility. 

This popular fixture in the local calendar for 40 years cannot continue unless sufficient people are prepared to organise and support it. Attendance on the day is at record levels but it does require planning. Over recent years it has continued thanks to just a few dedicated people working tirelessly to ensure that the "show goes on". We have now reached the point where greater involvement is a critical necessity. The absence of The Show would be a great cultural loss to the community and would also represent a substantial loss of income required to support the upkeep of your Village Hall and Playing Fields. 

If you care about your community and are prepared to help in any way with organisation of a Show for 2007 you are invited to come along to: An Informal Discussion Group To be held in the Social Area of the Village Hall On Monday 30th October at 8pm Wine and soft drinks will be provided All options (change of date, format etc) will be considered. The level of response to this invitation will determine whether or not the Headline above becomes fact. It is up to you. 

@ @ @

Bassingham Pre-School Awarded Play Space Grant

 

Bassingham Pre-School's have been successful in obtaining a PlaySpace Grant for Multi Use Garden at Bassingham Village Hall.

Due to the hard work of the Children, Staff, Committee and Parents their application for a PlaySpace Grant was approved. The judging panel were so impressed with the Children's work for a sensory type multi use garden, that they have displayed the design and Children's work at the County Council Offices in Lincoln. Those who attended the Village Show in August will have had a chance to view the concept plans. Finalization of the design will be made during this term. The garden, although primarily for the Pre-School, is available to all Village Hall Users. Can we take this opportunity to thank the Village Hall Committee, Parish Council and Lisa Wheeler (Childcare Coordinator, Children's Links) for all their help and support without which this project would not have been possible.

If you would like to help with the Garden or have any questions please contact Charlotte Lee on 869155.

@ @ @

Hill Holt Wood Update

It has been a long time since I have put pen to paper for parish magazines about Hill Holt Wood. I began to feel a bit 'stale' after a number of years and, possibly a little repetitive. Now we have moved on and we have much news to recount and potentially a new project.

Hill Holt Wood is now an award winning social enterprise, nationally recognised, employing twenty staff and with a turn-over in excess of 400,000. Karen is now the project director and I am a volunteer director and occasional consultant to the business. Locally Hill Holt is a partner in the North Kesteven Local Strategic Partnership and I chair the 'Great Place to Live, Work and Visit' theme group. Last year we took over the maintenance of the Stepping Out walks and this year we became the countryside services provider for the District. Look out for our 'Watch NK' vehicles in your area as this service expands. With our house completed we are now moving onto the community building working on the design with the University of Lincoln and Simons Design followed by construction involving the Lindum Group. What has in fact triggered this article is the 'new idea', Stapleford Woodland Park. Two years ago I applied the Hill Holt Wood concept to Stapleford and sent out a concept paper to various organisations. I was pleasantly surprised by the very positive response leading to a working group chaired by the Forestry Commission Regional Director, funding from SEEM and now a feasibility report. The final stage is to take this feasibility report to the local communities for their view and then back to the Steering Group to decide the next step.

There will be a public meeting for the Witham villages to be held at the Haddington and Auborn Enterprise Centre at 19:00 on Monday 9th October. Following a short presentation on the concept we will open the debate to questions and contributions positive or negative. Beckingham, Coddington and Stapleford will all have their own meetings as villages so close to the site. All are welcome. Please do come to hear about this exciting idea.

Nigel Lowthrop (Hill Holt Wood)

@ @ @

Witham St Hughs Activity Update

 

I just wanted to let people know that as a result of the meeting last week that we have now established Line Dancing classes in the Ark on Thursday nights, we have a Social Committee to organise activities of which the first will be Bingo, darts and a quiz night. We are setting up a history group and will be having a meeting in the ark for young people so that they can let us know what activities they are interested in. These meetings will be held over the next couple of weeks.

 

I am also trying to arrange for some LIVES first responder training to go on in Witham St Hughs, some YOGA classes and Italian lessons. If anyone is interested in joining these committees or add their name to interest lists for activities, they should get in contact with me as should anyone who is qualified to teach aerobics etc. Sport is on hold until ownership of the playing field and pavilion have been handed over to the Parish Council. There has also been a couple of people interested in extending neighbourhood watch into new areas if anyone wants to help with that.

Suzanne Saunter

Back to top of page

@ @ @

November 2006

Editorial

No sun, no moon. No morn, no noon.
No dawn, no dusk. No proper time of day.
No warmth, no cheerfulness. No healthful ease.
No comfortable feel in any member.
No shade, no shine. No butterflies, no bees.
No fruit, no flowers, no leaves, no birds.
NOVEMBER!!

Thomas Hood 1799-1845

Hummm! Right then, after that less then cheery note from Mr Hood we'll try to cheer you up. Yes it's November, it's cold, damp, wet, foggy and dark… No sorry let's try that again. After that extra hour in bed each morning before the winter song bird dawn chorus begins and you rise to the sun, although low in the sky now it shines through the now bare trees and glistens on the frost. You know that when you step out the ice cold air will hit you and with a gasp of breath you quickly awake and away you go. Little Robin red breast sitting on the table tugging at last night's scraps, Jenny Wren foraging amongst the undergrowth. The day has begun but the warmth will not come. Then as the day draws in and darkness descends draw the curtains, close out the dark, light the fire and settle down with Novembers issue full to bursting, 'how did it all fit in' there's something to do and lots to see, so don't miss out read right through. Tomorrow will come and we all know that rest assured Jack Frost is out there working hard to bring you yet another beautiful, crisp, bright, frosty morn.

@ @ @

Community Police Team Bulletin

 

Please report anything suspicious to the police immediately. Ask for the message to be passed to our Local Beat Officer.

PCSO 2126 Chris Boyle Community Beat Team

Winter Advice

With dark nights now upon us please note the following reminders:- REMEMBER TO SECURE All doors, windows and gate at all times. Always try to leave a visible light on inside and outside your property. Lock all Garages & Sheds making sure all security lighting is correctly set and working.


Remove valuables from your vehicles and from being on show in your properties. Note details of any suspicious vehicles/persons in your area and let us know on the beat team numbers.

Beware of bogus persons making sure identity and relevant appointments are confirmed by the company's number not mobile. Please make sure if children are playing out together that they stay together in groups and always have mobile phones if possible with all the relevant numbers making sure parents know where their children are. 

When children are using their bikes at night please make sure they are visible and they do have lights fitted especially to the rear of the bikes. By taking these steps it will help make sure that our communities remain safe and well throughout the up and coming season.

@ @ @

Hello From Pc Simon Gordon 

I would like to update as many residents as possible on the current policing situation in the North Hykeham rural area. I have been standing in as the community beat manager since the beginning of July 06, due to the on-going absence of PC Truelove. I have inherited a very large area, stretching from North Scarle, right across to Stragglethorpe and Beckingham. This is in fact two beat areas. 

However, it is not all bad news. When I started to police this area, there were two police community support officers PCSOs Stenner and Boyle. They have now been joined by two more PCSOs - PCSOs Czajkowski, and Brooker.In addition, PC Truelove will be returning to the 'patch' shortly. He will also be joined by another community police officer. I am applying for the post, and am hopeful it will be me. There will then be six of us working the rural villages. North and South Hykeham also have their own police officer, and two PCSOs. When all personnel are in place, the area will effectively be split into two, with one police officer, and two PCSOs for each half. The area will be more or less split by the A46 road. With all these additional resources, PC Truelove and the other 'beat manager' will be able to 'task' their PCSOs, and put them where they are required. 

Unlike police-officers, the PCSOs are not required to do lots of paperwork and are able to really get on the ground and patrol the villages. I hope that you have already seen them on the beat. All villages will be regularly patrolled. Please approach them with any problems, concerns, or information you may have. They are all keen, and very approachable. You should also see the police officers from time to time! Over the summer holiday period, we have experienced very few problems in our villages. I am certain that the increased uniform presence on the area is having a very positive effect. 

There have recently been three burglaries in Thorpe on the Hill, so please be mindful. I will update you all in the next issue, when officers are in place; both as to their identity, and as to which half of the area they will have responsibility for, so that you will know who is policing your village. 

See you around, Simon Gordon. PC 638

@ @ @

Neighbourhood Watch - www.nwinfo.co.uk 

www.nwinfo.co.uk is the new, independent Neighbourhood Watch website launched on Friday 27th October 2006. 

Everyone who is interested in Neighbourhood Watch is urged to visit the site for News, Views and Information about Neighbourhood Watch, other Watch Schemes and Communities.  Using modern technology to offer open forums, message boards to help members and the public nationwide to communicate and exchange ideas about the whole range of Neighbourhood and community topics ranging from how to stay safe to how to set up Neighbourhood Watch groups.

@ @ @

Consultation on Funding For New Projects


The governors at Bassingham Primary School are seeking to approach a number of grant-funding agencies in order to raise money to support several new projects that are intended to benefit both the school and the local community. To start this process we need to consult the local community in order to gather views about the proposed projects. The following are the proposed projects and the anticipated benefits to the school and the community:

 

1. A "Music Week" to be held during May 2007. This would include joint performances by the school choir with other groups in the area, performances by a variety of vocal and instrumental groups and opportunities for members of the community to attend workshops e.g. percussion workshop.


2. Enhance the school's programme to develop healthy lifestyles and drug awareness through "Life Education." This is a mobile classroom that came to the school last year and was very successful. The aim is to have the Life Education programme over a period of years so that the children's experiences can build year on year. There are parental programmes, which are designed to support the work undertaken by the children, and these can also be made available to the community.

3. Replace the school playing field so that the grass surface is safer and more suitable for a variety of sporting activities e.g. football, cricket and running etc. The community would have access to the new field and the bid for funding would include coaching for a variety of sports activities after school or at weekends etc.

 

We need your help and support. If you think these proposals would or would not be of benefit to both the community and to the school then please send your comments by Thursday 30th November please.

 

John Rowland Chair of Governors Bassingham Primary School

@ @ @

Witham St Hughs Primary School

Muntjac Way, Witham St Hughs, Lincoln
'Educating Your Child For Lifelong Learning'

Open Morning November 2006

Monday 13th November from 9 to 11am
Are you looking for a high quality education in a caring, forward thinking school? If so, please come along and join us for our open morning to see the school in session and to find out more.
Places available for children aged 4 to 11 years.

For further information or to arrange an alternative appointment, please contact the school on 869590.

The Village Kids Club
In association with
Witham St Hughs Primary School

We are aiming to establish a Pre-School, which would initially be located at 'The Ark' at Witham St Hughs.

@ @ @

The Ark Witham St Hughs - Relaunch

 

The Ark community hall is a former RAF community centre, which was renovated three years ago by the residents of Witham St Hughs. We raised over £120,000 in funding to completely revamp the hall. This is currently undergoing a re-launch, following a very successful public meeting, in which a social committee was formed, who will be responsible for the promotion of events in the hall. If you have any ideas or skills that you feel may be of interest to the local community, please contact Gill Finn on 07904 386138, to discuss this further.

Activities already set up are Street dance every other Tuesday from 6.30pm. Line dancing every Thursday from 7pm. We are currently asking for expressions of interest to form a history group, which may be able to attract funding for start up fees. A drama group, preschool, and youth club are also being researched at this time.

The hall is situated off Nettleton Drive to the north of Witham St Hughs and is an excellent venue for social meetings and party nights.

@ @ @

Home Improvement Grants Available 

Grants of up to £5,000 are now available for private homes, whether owned or rented. Under the Decent Homes standard, a grant of up to £5,000 is available for areas of a home that may affect the health or safety of people living there. Typical projects could include extra insulation, roof repairs or replacement doors and windows. 

If there are children under 16 years or disabled or older persons living at the house, then you could qualify. A grant is only available to those on means tested benefits and to low income households. 

You can only qualify if you own your own home or are a private tenant with responsibility for repairs and maintenance of your home. 

For an initial chat about what might be available to you, NKDC's Housing Renewals Officer responsible for Decent Homes will be available at Witham Local Access Point, Bassingham:- On 5th December between 9am and 12pm

@ @ @

Lives

Lives first responders turn out to emergency 999 calls as well as an emergency Ambulance. The idea of the groups is that they can get help to an emergency call in the shortest possible time. Being in a rural area like we are, emergency help can often take several minutes when waiting for an ambulance, and I am sure that anyone who has ever required help from the emergency services knows that several minutes can feel like a very long time. Earlier this year a meeting was held at Bassingham village hall in the interest of starting a LIVES FIRST RESPONDER GROUP. There was a good response to this but no follow up has since happened. I Work for East Midlands Ambulance Service (formally Lincolnshire) as an Ambulance Technician as does my partner who is a state registered Paramedic. 

We currently work as LIVES emergency responders/trainers in our own time around the local area, we live at Witham St Hughs. There are also further paramedics in the area who also work for LIVES and wish to start a group. I have arranged with LIVES to hold another meeting this time at Norton Disney Village Hall on 2nd November at 6.30pm to bring together those who have shown previous interest and new interest in forming a group in our area. Therefore could all people who live in WITHAMSTAPLE distribution area please try to attend if they wish to take part. We need volunteers for responders, fundraisers and treasurer etc...  Many thanks and hope to see you there.

@ @ @

Bassingham Playpark Project

First of all, a big thank you to everyone who helped at the Car Boot Sale, which raised £242.73. Building on the success of this, we have planned dates for a Car Boot between April and September 2007, on the 3rd Saturday of each month. We will advertise these fully nearer the time. In the meantime, get searching through your attics for those buried treasures and come along! We have also had donations this month of £16, together with a cheque in the sum of £110 from the Thrift Shop at RAF Cranwell. Our thanks go to them and to Julie O'Dell for nominating us for this amount. Finally, we will shortly be issuing a quiz which we hope everyone will enjoy and support and have something special planned, that the whole village will enjoy, before Christmas….

@ @ @

Carlton Le Moorland - Bassingham Pathway Link

A recent survey of Carlton le Moorland residents showed that 90% support the need for a pathway to link the two villages. Most people believe the road is too dangerous for pedestrians and cyclists, and many say they would leave their cars at home if there was a safe alternative when visiting Bassingham School, shops, the Surgery, churches or friends. With young people and adults, friends and relations, customers and patients already travelling regularly between Bassingham and Carlton, a pathway link would be a major improvement for families and businesses in both villages, 

This issue has been discussed a number of times in the past. Lincolnshire County Council has recognised for over 20 years that a path is needed, but other schemes have always taken priority. The issue was raised again at the May Parish Meeting, and an informal Pathway Group of four then met to explore the issue in more detail. Initial research shows there is a good chance, with strong local support, of making the pathway a reality. The group has identified possible sources of funding through various community grants. This means the pathway will not be competing for LCC funding with other highways needs.

The pathway should be wide enough for two cycles to pass, with an all weather surface, and separated from the road. 

Having demonstrated such strong support from Carlton le Moorland, the group now needs to be formalised. A Public Meeting has been arranged for Wednesday 15 November at 7.30 pm in Carlton le Moorland Village Hall. The aim is to set up a Steering Committee to guide the project through the next stages. 

Representatives from relevant public bodies have been invited and, whether you live in Bassingham or Carlton, everyone is very welcome to attend.

Bryan Thornborough, Andy & Sue Sceeny and Stan Underwood

@ @ @

Bassingham Charity Trustees 

If you are 85 years of age before 31st December 2006 and have lived in Bassingham for 3 years or more you are eligible for the Christmas bonus. Please put your name and address and date of birth on a piece of paper in the box at the Post Office. Persons who have received the bonus in previous years need not re-apply. For sale 8 acres of good agricultural land at Bassingham. Get details and a tender form by calling 788210.

@ @ @

North Kesteven Council For Voluntary Service 

Ann McGirr is the development worker for North Kesteven Council for Voluntary Service (which incorporates the Sleaford & District Volunteer Bureau). We support volunteers and local and community groups throughout North Kesteven. 

One of our most successful ways of doing this has been putting on training events. All our training comes as a result of requests from groups. So if you are interested in training or you think we can help your group then pop into The Witham Office, on the first Monday of the month.

North Kesteven Council for Voluntary Service

Training Day 

Developing Your Organisation

14th November 2006

9.30am to 3.30pm 
at
NKDC Committee Room 
£20 members
£50 non-members

Sessions will focus on:
Issues on development within a voluntary organisation
Developing an effective management committee
Developing involvement and teamwork in a voluntary organisation
Developing the legal structure of a voluntary organisation
Managing change within a voluntary organisation 
Developing systems in a voluntary organisation  

@ @ @

Roger Chaplin's Bird Observations for October 

So far this month it seems that wetland birds are taking over the area with many Canada and Greylag geese putting in a very noisy and visual display, in one afternoon at the beginning of the month I sat on the bank overlooking a lake at Norton Disney quarry and it was full of these geese all preening their feathers and following each other about from one area to another, the sort of thing you see on a TV programme such as Autumn watch, it's much better in real life though and the fresh air does you good so have a walk down the lanes and a peek over a hedge, you'll be surprised at what you will see.

Onto some smaller birds now and I mean smaller, the gold crest's and long tailed tit's are back in Tonges wood, working their way along the edge in the morning and back again in the evening, the goldcrest being Britain's smallest bird and if it wasn't for the tail the tit would be the smallest by ¼ of an inch I've also seen these in my garden at about lunchtime, so you don't have to get up early to see them.

The Buzzards are putting in some great gliding display's at the moment, only yesterday afternoon (Saturday 14th ) there was one as I was entering Carlton from Norton just circling at about 50ft, and another as I was leaving Bassingham  on my way to Whisby.These magnificent birds of prey are probably the largest we get around here, so if you see a large brown bird soaring above it's more than likely a Buzzard, (now you're already on you're way to identifying birds,)

Keep you're eyes open for our winter visitor in the fields now, such as Fieldfare, Redwing and Mistle thrush, all looking similar but with size differences and subtle colour differences.

I'm reading a book at the moment about local or alternative names for some species of birds so I'll try and include some next month.

Roger lives in Carlton Le Moorland and compiles a monthly bird list mainly around the areas of Carlton and Norton Disney, in particular from his garden in Westhall Close and on his journey to work at the quarry area of Norton Disney. One of the main reasons for the list is to monitor the rise or decline of bird life around the quarrying industry. This list with regular updates is now carried on this website:

Back to top of page

@ @ @

December 2006

Bassingham Ward Good Neighbours Scheme
 

Living in a tight knit rural community it goes without saying that neighbours help each other out in all manner of ways; dropping in on an elderly neighbour with a spot of home cooking, mowing the lawn for someone who is unable to due to illness or injury, or simply fixing someone's leaky tap.  These are every day occurrences that can be taken for granted. However, not everyone who needs help speaks up about it for fear of being a burden or because they are isolated with no one to ask.  

 

In Lincoln and in many towns and cities across the county, Time Bank is now operating successfully. Time Bank is a kind of 'good neighbours scheme' that recognises the value of community volunteers and rewards them for their time. 

 

If a person in the community needs help with a task, they register with the Time Bank Co-ordinator who adds them to the contacts database by recording two sets of data; 1. What they require help with (i.e. gardening) 2. What they are willing to help others with (for example shopping or form filling). Once this data is collated the co-ordinator can then match them with someone on the database who has registered the skills they require. Each time one of the Time Bank members spends an hour helping someone in the community they receive one Time Credit, which they can 'cash in' when they require someone to help them. Each person that registers with the scheme has to undertake a Criminal Record Bureau Check to ensure the safety of those involved in the scheme. 

 

TIME BANK can be fun as well as useful. Through TIME BANK Lincoln, for example, some people have been accessing music lessons and learning new crafts. Fun activities are valued equally to those more serious ones.  With TIME BANK the possibilities are endless. The more people who join, the more skills there are to share.
 

EVERYONE has something they can contribute.
 

We (the Community Development Workers for RACoL and NKCVS) in partnership with Time Bank Lincoln, would really like to build on existing foundations and extend the service out into the rural communities starting with the Bassingham Ward.

 

So, we really need to hear from residents who feel they could help out in some way and from the people who would really benefit from the scheme.  Only if there is enough response from residents and enough interest in the scheme can we make the moves to make it happen.

 

TO REGISTER YOUR INTEREST AND SUPPORT. 
Contact Suzanne Saunter on 550529
Email: Suzanne.saunter@lincolnshire.gov.uk
or for more information visit  www.timebanklincoln.org.uk 

@ @ @

Home Improvement Grants Available 

Grants of up to £5,000 are now available for private homes, whether owned or rented. Under the Decent Homes standard, a grant of up to £5,000 is available for areas of a home that may affect the health or safety of people living there. Typical projects could include extra insulation, roof repairs or replacement doors and windows. 

If there are children under 16 years or disabled or older persons living at the house, then you could qualify. A grant is only available to those on means tested benefits and to low income households. 

You can only qualify if you own your own home or are a private tenant with responsibility for repairs and maintenance of your home. 

For an initial chat about what might be available to you, NKDC's Housing Renewals Officer responsible for Decent Homes will be available at Witham Local Access Point, Bassingham on:-

5th December between 9am and 12pm

@ @ @

Carlton Le Moorland To Bassingham Pathway
 

The Pathway Group held a well attended, successful Public Meeting in Carlton le Moorland Village Hall on 15th November. About 40 people came along, including our District Councillor, Chairs of both Parish Councils, representatives from Lincolnshire Highways, Sustrans, Community Development, School Travel Plan Officer, Church, Witham Staple and Hill Holt. We were delighted with the number of villagers who came along. A number of people sent apologies, and messages of support, including very positive endorsements from Bassingham Surgery and School.

 

The meeting heard a summary of 'the story so far', and 'the way forward'. There was some excellent advice and supportive comments from the invited guests and good questions and points from the villagers.

 

The group sincerely thanks all those who came to the meeting, or sent messages of support. Community support is vital to the success of the project and is very much appreciated by the Group. We shall continue to keep you informed as the project progresses.

@ @ @

LIVES (Lincolnshire Integrated Voluntary Emergency Service)

  

Firstly may I thank those of you who showed interested at the last meeting, together with the previous interest shown we are hoping to get a LIVES Group for the Witham villages up and running as soon as possible. To do this another meeting has been arranged at Norton Village hall for Thursday 14th December at 7pm. This is primarily to continue the interest and expand the scheme, and furthermore to collect the application forms already given out, and elect members onto the board (treasurer, Secretary, fund raisers etc.). More application forms are available from me or on the night. We still require further interest from local residents within the Witham
area, and as such will be available during the evening to present a demonstration and chat about the role of the LIVES responders. Or if you are unable to attend on the evening but would like further information you can alternatively contact me on the number below.

 

May I remind all previous applicants, and indeed all new applicants who wish to join, that two forms of formal ID are required to complete the forms that should be brought with you if at all possible, e.g. Passport, driving licence (both parts), birth cert, marriage cert (for name change). These forms are confidential and can be completed at the evening.
Jennie Doughty

Back to top of page

@ @ @

1st Bassingham Scout Group Xmas Post
 

Cub Scouts. I would like to thank all those who supported the Cub Christmas Postal Service last year. We made over £120 which was a welcome boost to our funds. We will be delivering cards (with the help of our new Beaver Scouts) again this year for a small donation to our funds. We deliver around the local villages.

 

Post boxes will be found in Bassingham at:- 

Green's Stores 

Spar Shop

St Michael's Church

the Post Office 

and Carlton le Moorland Post Office too.

 

Post boxes will be in place from Friday 1st December and the last Post will be on Monday 18th December. All cards will be delivered by Friday 22nd December. Please make sure that the cards are fully addressed, as last year we had cards with Christian names on only!
Alison Kelly (Akela)

Back to top of page

@ @ @

The Smile Website Team

 
By way of introduction, my name is India and I am an 11-year-old pupil at Bassingham Primary School. I am part of the school Website Team, a group of 7 children who publish monthly pages on the school and Witham Staple websites. (The website team had the idea of putting a small piece of work in this month's Witham Staple to advertise our work as well as the school website in general. To access the monthly pages simply select the "Children" icon on the home page and then the "Smile Website Team" link on the left side of the screen. You can then choose whoever's work you wish to view………or even look at them all!!!

Smiles All Round
It was not that long ago when we said hello to lots of little new faces as they started school at Bassingham Primary in September. Now, just over three months on, they are just as knowing as any Year 6 could be, though maybe in a slightly different way! I invited six of those children to tell me their favourite thing about being at school.
· Elliot: "Playing outside is good; I like playing What's the Time Mr Wolf on the snake!!!"
· Tilly : "Eating lunch with all my friends!"
· Lauren: "Playing in our little play area, especially going on the bikes."
· Jessica: "Playing Orange Balls with Fernanda and the big girls."
· Honour: "Painting and drawing pictures, and doing about Percy the Park Keeper."
· Fernanda: "Going on the computer and having our Harvest Supper."
 

When asked the question "Do you like your teacher Miss Petrie?" I was answered by the loudest chorus of "YES" I've ever heard.  So with a very well liked teacher, happy "Receptionists" and a lot of handprints, I'd say that in Year R it really is……………….. SMILES ALL ROUND!!!
By India
Back to top of page

@ @ @

Roger Chaplin's Bird Observations

Observations for December 2006

Some of the geese are returning to the wetland areas at the moment with good sightings of Canada and Greylag geese, the duck population on the lagoons at the quarry sites have also risen with good sightings of Teal, Mallard, Tufted duck, Pochard and a few widgeon.  The Teal are a fairly small duck and on closer inspection have really nice yellow patch either side of their tail, a chestnut head with a dark green eye patch that extends to the rear of its head, if you are lucky enough to see them in flight you will notice rapid wing beats and the ability to twist and turn at will, A great little visitor to our part of the world from Iceland and the far north tundra's.


Tawny owl's seem to be in abundance at the moment and appear at almost every turn in the road but the little and barn owls have virtually disappeared, I put that down to the weather with it being so mild they don't have to travel far from their roost's to feed,

The fields are full of Fieldfare, Redwing and mistle thrushes and in particular the bushes that still hold some berries, there's a nice bush just after the bends in the road on leaving Carlton for Norton where you can see these birds feeding on berries at most times of the day.
I have been keeping an eye on the nest boxes in my garden and in Norton big wood for the past few weeks and the humble sparrows have been taking nest building material into them, "they probably think it's spring" If you have any nest boxes in your garden keep an eye on them as a lot of small birds use them for roosting in at night.

There was a rare visitor to Norton Disney and Carlton Le Moorland over the Christmas break and that was a Red Kite, he is larger than the Buzzard and a very elegant and graceful bird of prey the most distinguishing feature is it's forked tail orange red in colour and the wingtips are very finger like and black.

Just a few more local names to go with last months.
Barefaced crow= Rook
Chiffchaff= Lesser Pettychaps
Starling= Stare
Mistle Thrush= Storm cock
Blackbird= Merle
Yellow wagtail= Barley bird
And for some reason in Suffolk the Grey heron is called "Frank"

Happy new year

 

Roger lives in Carlton Le Moorland and compiles a monthly bird list mainly around the areas of Carlton and Norton Disney, in particular from his garden in Westhall Close and on his journey to work at the quarry area of Norton Disney. One of the main reasons for the list is to monitor the rise or decline of bird life around the quarrying industry. This list with regular updates is now carried on this website:

Back to top of page

@ @ @

Witham Staple Web Editor can be contacted by e-mail: info@withamstaple.com