Posts by Pam

Time Springs Forward this Sunday

In last year’s post about the annual changing of the clocks, we wrote:

“Even with the Vernal Equinox occurring last Tuesday, 20th March, last Saturday night’s snowfall all over the village made it difficult to realise that spring is here.”

This year, it feels like spring has been steadily creeping up on us since January, with the exception of one snowy weekend in February, perhaps. Bulbs, plants, flowering trees – all appeared earlier than expected, but welcome all the same.

So, officially, Daylight Saving Time starts when local standard time is about to reach
1:00:00, Sunday 31st March and clocks are turned forward one hour to
2:00:00, Sunday 31st March, local daylight time instead.

The moving of the clocks was first introduced during World War One by Germany and Austria, and then by the Allies, to save on coal usage. It was invented by George Vincent Hudson, a New Zealand entomologist in 1895, while British Businessman William Willett, is also credited with the idea as a way of getting up earlier and so having more daylight hours after work.

However, with Brexit on the horizon, it remains to be seen whether changes to daylight savings time plans in continental Europe will have any effect on the British clocks in the future. The European commission president, Jean-Claude Juncker, has been championing the change, saying: “Clock-changing must stop. Member states should themselves decide whether their citizens live in summer or winter time.”

Interesting times ahead?

Gigaclear – more details

On Monday 18 April, Gigaclear gave a presentation in the Village Hall, of the installation of a full fibre network that will be introduced to the northern half of the village.

Whilst there were a number of people present, it was clear that the vast majority of the village didn’t or couldn’t attend. This Post will, we hope, present some of the information that was given on Monday.

The work will be starting within the next few of weeks and a map is shown of the area covered. Cabinets, similar to the green BT cabinets already installed, will be positioned at prime parts of the village. Gigaclear have consulted with the Parish Council about these positions and some have been moved from sensitive positions, such as the one planned to be near the Cross (!). Eight cabinets can be seen on the map as green squares, but please note these are not the final positions agreed with the Parish Council.

Click on image to enlarge

Each property will have a connection point set into the pavement outside the house. Each point is about the size of the water meter cover, approximately 20cm/8″, currently outside many properties.

It is from this connection point that a property can be connected to any ISP of your choice:
It doesn’t have to be Gigaclear.
You may decide to stay with the provider you have already.
(Or you are not connected to the Internet and want to stay that way, in which case how come you can read this post?)
The choice is yours.

Click on image to enlarge

It was pointed out that not many residents were aware of this forthcoming installation.  Gigaclear did send a letter to each household that would be affected, but it was in a plain white envelope addressed ‘To The Occupier‘.  The letter is reproduced here for those who, like me, put that type of mail in the recycling box.


When will installation start?

When will the village south of the river be connected?

When will Newton be connected?

These and many more questions were asked on Monday and, on the whole, were answered.

But there are many more and an orange folder of FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions) had been provided for all who attended.
The two pages are reproduced below.

Contact details for further queries:

Network Build Care Team
Tel: 01865 591137
Facebook @GigaclearNetworks
Twitter @GigaclearNet

Regular updates on:

For the full list of Internet Service Providers available on the Gigaclear network go to

NCC Budget for 2019/2020 agreed.

County Council

Proposals to transform services and increase financial stability have been agreed by Councillors at Northamptonshire County Council starting a new chapter for public services in the county.

The agreed budget will target investment into adults’ facilities and children’s homes, to provide better support for some of the county’s most vulnerable people, while at the same time drive more cost-effective ways of delivering services.

A 4.99% Council Tax increase will retain the Council’s position as having one of the lowest tax rates in the country, while providing increased financial sustainability for any new unitary councils which may be created in the county.

Leader of the Council, Cllr Matt Golby, described the budget, and the latest financial reports, showing the organisation closing in on a balanced budget in the current year, as a turnaround point in the Council’s fortunes.

He said: “For the last year it has become customary for the words Northamptonshire County Council to be associated with crisis. That has now changed.  Our new cabinet and leadership team together with the Secretary of State’s Commissioners have spearheaded this change and we need to look at the facts. We are closing in on balancing this year’s budget which at one point stood at a £64.2m challenge and was immense. We have just agreed a budget for next year which balances, and has at its heart a commitment to transform services to make them more cost-effective rather than simply cutting them and responds directly to the concerns people raised with us through the consultation period. Of course the budget also includes a 4.99% rise in Council Tax and we did not take this decision lightly. While not many people welcome a rise in their bills it is important to put this into context. For the majority of people in this county it will mean a rise of between 75p and £1 a week. Even with the increase Northamptonshire will be the second lowest charging like-for-like County Council in the whole country.

The budget includes investment in Adult Social Care centres and homes to provide new accommodation and services for older people, those with learning disabilities and mental health requirements to increase capacity and therefore reduce the reliance on costly external placements.

It also signals investment in Children’s Services to build in-house provision including increasing occupancy at the council’s own residential homes to reduce the cost of using external service providers.

Cllr Golby said: “Whilst we acknowledge the challenges we will face over the next year, we will build on the hard work and progress we’ve made over the past twelve months.  Today’s budget delivers for the county’s most vulnerable. It delivers in bringing greater financial security. And it delivers in drawing a line under a very troubled time for this organisation, paving a way to a brighter future.”

Geddington has Talents

An Exhibition of Crafts from Geddington residents will take place on Saturday 6th April.

With the demise of the Village show, where handicrafts were not only displayed, but entered into the Handicraft Classes of the Show, there have been few opportunities for such a display of talents.

The U.R.C Chapel Rooms on 6th April will offer such an opportunity. The organisers of this Exhibition, would like anyone who would like to show a sample of their work at this time – embroidery, knitting, woodwork etc, etc – to contact Margaret Tuffin on tel: 741292.

The Exibition will take place in the Chapel Rooms on Queen Street, from 10am to 12 noon. There will be all the delights of a coffee morning as well!

The U.R.C will be holding a Service at 10am, on Sunday 7th April to celebrate Talents.

All are very welcome to both events.

Volunteer Carers Wanted

Adam Wilson, Volunteer Co-ordinator of the Northamptonshire Carers Sitting Service, has sent this request for volunteers. The Service is based at Northamptonshire Carers, 123 Midlands Road, Wellingborougfh NN8 1LU, but to reply to Adam’s request, use his contact details at the bottom of this post.

Volunteers needed to give carers a break

  • Do you have a few hours to spare?
  • Would you like to help a worthwhile cause?
  • Use your skills and experience to help carers take a break

What’s involved?

  • The Carers Sitting Service provides support by giving a break to those who have a caring responsibility for a husband, wife, partner, parent, relative or friend.
  • Sitting sessions take the form of befriending and involve meeting the same person in their own home. As a volunteer befriender you would be visiting someone in your local area. Volunteers do not give personal care or cook meals, undertake cleaning or do shopping.
  • No qualifications are needed, we will provide induction training and on-going support. However, it is important that you are understanding, patient, non-judgmental, a good listener and open-minded.
  • You could use your spare time to help someone else, or gain experience while you search for paid employment. You could also gain a reference to use when you apply for jobs.
  • All volunteers have an informal interview, will need to complete an application form and provide two references. If you are successful we will request a disclosure and barring service (DBS) check, which we will pay for.
  • Travel expenses will be paid for any visits you make.

Interested? To find out more:

Call Adam Wilson on 01933 677837 or email him at

The Newsletter lives on!

A personal view of The Newsletter’s AGM
by Pam Hopkins

There were 18 people at The Newsletter’s AGM on Thursday 29 November, which included 13 members of the public and 5 committee members. At the end of the meeting there were 9 ‘public’ and 9 committee members.

So The Newsletter continues, much to the relief of many residents who value the quarterly magazine, including myself, a former editor (1994 – 2012).

The magazine has always provided an insight into a 20th and 21st century English village. It includes, amongst so many subjects: local clubs and pub news, comments from the four political layers, advertising by local tradesmen, village charities, historical articles, religious comments, sporting achievements, the school’s progress and massive amounts of information of what’s happening, or going to happen, or has happened, in the village’s social calendar.

The new committee consists of:

Chair: Jane Tysoe
Secretary: Joy Wilson
Treasurer: Sylvia Pitts
Distribution: Brenda McCraith
Advertising: Lynette Litman
Submissions Co-ordinator: Paul Johnson
Layout Editor: Charlotte Mackay
Members: Sandie Allott, Terry Teale

Contact information for individual members will be available in the next issue – publication mid-February – in the meantime, The Newsletter’s email address is:

The Samuel Lee Charity – Geddington’s own

The Samuel Lee Charity

A community fund for the Parish of Geddington & Newton.

It has been 10 years since the first Memorial Lunch was held to commemorate the Tercentenary of Samuel Lee’s death in 1708. Postponed from March this year due to inclement weather, 2018 saw the Lunch held on 28 October. A fitting time as it was the first anniversary of John Sutton’s death, John being the driving force behind so much of the Charity’s increase in its financial health and standing in the community. With a reception, a three-course meal followed by tea or coffee, two speakers this year, followed by an auction and a raffle, it’s always a very pleasant social event and, of course, the main fund-raiser for the Charity.

In complete contrast, the Christmas distribution is a tradition that has been held each year since the Charity was first created in 1717. The content of the distribution has changed significantly over the centuries, not least of which was the basic need for food in the 18th and 19th centuries for the poor of the village. These days, the distribution is a reflection of the instruction that Samuel Lee stated in his Will and while the ‘need’ is no longer there, we are grateful to the 50 or so people who help to keep this 300 year-old tradition alive. If you, or someone you know, is over 75, and would like to be part of this tradition, please get in touch with me or any Trustee. The 2018 distribution will take place on Saturday 22 December from 10am.

And finally, the Trustees would like to remind everybody in Geddington and Newton that they are always willing to consider applications for financial help, by grant or by loan, from residents who find themselves in difficulties or for student needs.

This year, the Charity has revised the Grant Application form – the last one was devised by Mick Alloway, chairman until 1992 – so revision was seriously needed. Guidance Notes have also been issued to comply with current regulations. Contact any of the Trustees or the secretary if you would like one. And please, be assured that any request is kept entirely confidential and the Trustees do not engage in means testing

As John Sutton said many times: “The Charity’s resources are not great, but a little help can make all the difference at a critical moment. If you think we could help you, or if you know someone who might need our help, please contact the secretary, on 742292 or speak to one of the other Trustees listed below.”

Nick Batchelor, 1 West Street (chairman)
Claire Buckseall, 7 Chase View Road
Jim Harker, Lyons Yard, Wood Street
Paul Hopkins, 9 Grafton Road (treasurer)
Rachel Newall, 21 New Road
Tony Slough, 2 Chase Farm
Keeley Tate, 42 Skeffington Close

Pam Hopkins Secretary, 9 Grafton Road, Geddington, tel: 742292, email:

Autumn – a season of colour and variety

The weather earlier this year – wet in winter and cold in spring – has lead to a huge variety of strong autumnal colours, both in the countryside and in our gardens. I believe the colours are more intense this year.


I post a few images here to show this. If you have any you would like to share, we’d be delighted to see and post them.

Most of the fruit and berries are/were food for the birds – still some on the plants.

Then there were the mammals. We had a number of interesting visitors, some came briefly, others are regulars, but not all were welcome.

Can’t claim the Red Kite actually visits my garden, but he’s been flying over it ever since he fledged in July.

And finally, three of the cream of the village buildings in November weather conditions.

By the way, the holly berries at the top of this post are on the holly bush in the churchyard. When I took this image, I found something rather surprising.  If you walk up the path past the church towards Church Hill, you will see the bush and berries, which cover this side of the bush, but if you go to the rear of the bush, where it faces north, there are none! If you know why this is, please email me with an answer. Thanks, Pam

Macmillan Coffee Morning

Delighted to be able to post this annual event, here on the village website, although there may be more than one Macmillan Coffee Morning being held in the village, if so, let us know and we’ll publicise it here as well. However, Vic Crouse has kindly sent us this report on the Coffee Morning being held in the church on 29 September.

“As most villagers now know, on every last Saturday of the month, a coffee morning is held at Geddington Church. However, from time to time we hold a special coffee morning when proceeds are donated to the Macmillan Cancer Fund. Through many of our own personal experiences, we realise just what an important and superb organisation this is and, to continue our support, a Macmillan Coffee Morning is being held at Geddington church on Saturday 29th September. Everyone is welcome to come along for coffee, tea, a variety of cakes, Tombola etc, but not least, a chance to relax and enjoy convivial conversation in our beautiful church.”


World Conker Championships

The 2018 World Conker Championships take place on the 14th October, in the grounds of The Shuckburgh Arms, Southwick, near Oundle, Northamptonshire. It starts at 9.30 and finishes approximately 4pm.

This competition, which has seen a number of Geddingtonians not only take part, but winning as well! is organised by Ashton Conker Club and has taken place since 1965.

Organiser (and participator), St John Burkett, said: “This year, however, due to the unusually hot and dry weather conditions, the championship committee may have to import conkers from Germany as the heat has made the conkers grow too quickly and are smaller than usual. The last time we did this was in 1977, after the famous big heatwave.”

The event has a mixture of adult and junior competitions. These both operate as round-based knock-out games, until a winner is found and crowned on their throne.

If you are interested in taking part, then go to where all the information for doing so can be found. However, for a taster, here below are the rules (click to enlarge):

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