Posts by Pam

The May Day Tradition

According to one of my articles, the modern May Day tradition that we know and watch, with the pupils from Geddington school, started in 1951. However, we have, in the Archive, an image that looks like a May Day photograph, but is dated 1949.  Whatever the true date, it’s still a tradition that has been kept alive for over 60 years.

Here, on the website, we have been  compiling a list of May Queens, the Consorts, the crowners and all the attendants. A couple of years ago, we published the list as we knew it then and asked if anyone could contribute to it. We had a good response with names, photos and interesting stories. When that source dried up, we went to the school where Brenda Miles and I compared lists and filled in the gaps where we could.

It’s very satisfying to record that the list of May Queens is complete with the exception of 1955!  Does anyone know who it was?

1974 Parade from church. May Queen: Sally Bradbury, Consort: Rodney Bird, Attendants: Kristi Dennis, Helen Kemp.

We also have photos of many of the earlier ‘Queens’, but few of the later ones. We would dearly love to have those to put in the Archive. (One meaning of archive is: a collection of records, it doesn’t mean old age, so don’t be shy!)  Scanned photos in .jpg form to or actual photos we can borrow and scan to 9 Grafton Road, please.

Our final request is for names of all the other participants. Below is a .pdf file of the list of those who took part, with lots of blanks and we would very much like to fill in as many as we can of the consorts and attendants and, if you were there and can remember their names, the people who crowned the May Queens.

Thank you for any help you can give. And let’s hope for fine weather on Thursday, this year’s celebration of Geddington’s May Day tradition.

Click here to see the list: May_Day_Queens_of_Geddington_2017


Geddington Garage Sale

The 2012 Spring
Geddington Garage Sale
– was the name that this major fund-raising event was first called.

It all started when the Friends of the Church were looking for new ideas to raise funds. The first Sale was promoted in the 2012 Spring issue of The Newsletter, with the persuasive comment that it was ‘better than a car boot sale – you can nip to the toilet for a start, this is recycling on a grand village scale!’ The article continued:
You can set up a table outside your house with:
– Things you always meant to ‘Car Boot’ but never got round to
– Things you have made yourself (cakes, cards, jams etc)
– Items to raise money for you or your favourite good cause
For a pre-paid £5 per stall to Friends’ funds (£10 on the day) we will:
– Advertise the event across the County
– Include you in a map for buyers to see where your stall is on the day
– Trade stalls will not be allowed.

Very little has changed in the five years that this very successful event has been held. Jackie Binley, organiser and co-ordinator with her husband Gordon, has said: ” It has gone from strength to strength with everyone, including the world and his wife, joining in. Higham Ferrers, Gretton, Brigstock, Woodford and many others copied us. Some people rang me up, asking for advice and I gladly gave them a few tips on how to make it successful. The first Sale was boiling hot with people getting sunburnt and a stall selling candles had their stock reduced to pools of wax! We had over 100 stalls.”

“The money for the Friends is raised by Stall fees, Map sales and various Friends’ stalls, such as the book stall next to the Cross. The maps are usually confusing to strangers who find the directions strangely odd. People sometimes complain either a) The maps are nowhere to be found b) Maps are too complicated or c) Why should I pay for a map? I explain it is a donation for organising the event, but only once has anyone refused.”

The 2017 event takes place on Saturday 27 May, from 10am to 4pm. There are refreshments to be found, along with toilet facilities, at the Chapel on Queen Street and the Church of St Mary Magdalene on Grafton Road.

Jackie commented: “There are stalls on most streets, but there seems to be a proliferation on Wood Street this year, but there’s over a week to go for more stalls to enter from every street. She finished: “I have never suggested that stallholders should give me details of the money raised, but I bet it would be interesting to find out!”


Great News? Great Newts!

Great News?
Great Newts!

Regarding the work that has been carried out on the pond at Geddington Buccleuch Meadows, I see this as a good thing, removing the vegetation that had totally taken over the pond,” Commented Brian Laney, Northamptonshire County Recorder for Reptiles & Amphibians.

The Geddington Volunteer Fire Brigade “remain committed to the development and management of the pond’, said Graham Brown recently, “we had consulted with Brian Laney prior to the initial work being carried out and he kept in touch afterwards. He contacted us fairly last minute at the end of March saying he was in the area and would like to visit, so we met up with him just as it was getting dark, so he could have a look around with his powerful spotlights. We had been down there for about 30 mins or so, during which time he checked the perimeter and did a general reccy of the pond before we made the discovery.” Discovery? This image shows it

a female Great Crested Newt!

The image isn’t great, but it was taken at night, under a spotlight and through water.

Brian also mentioned in his subsequent report after the visit, that: “It’s important to remove (some of) the silt that has accumulated over the years in the pond bottom (Great Crested Newts prefer clear water and a gravel bottom). This silt can be removed in stages, as it is OK to have some silt as species such as the Common Frog, can hibernate in this. It’s best if any habitat management on the pond, is done between October and 1st February, as no Great Crested Newts would be present in the pond, as they hibernate on land in frost free locations.”

He continued, “It’s important the vegetation that covers a pond is kept in check, as it’s important (for some pond wildlife) to have open water, removing such vegetation can, in turn, open up buried seed bank of various plant species, and it will be interesting to see what appears.”

This discovery surely exonerates the GVFB for all the work they had undertaken last year, as Brian has been able to record the first official sighting of the Great Crested Newt and it was done by the official County Recorder. It doesn’t get much better than that!

Some images of the planting work carried out in February 2017.

The result of February’s planting session

Images taken in May 2017:

And how it looks now:

Annual Parish Meeting

The Annual Parish Meeting was held in the Village Hall Lounge last night, with eight members of the public attending.

Chaired by Cllr Mark Rowley, and Minuted by the Parish Clerk Anita Curtis, this was not a Parish Council meeting, but one where residents’ concerns could be aired and given more time than the half an hour Public Session at each Parish Council meeting.

This report then, is not an official one, but comments from one member of the public. There may be comments I misheard, or didn’t hear at all, and if this is the case, then I would welcome more comments and corrections from those who attended.

Five issues were raised and these were:

The White Lion
Yellow Lines
20mph signs
Raw sewage

White Lion. A number of rumours had been circulating about the future use of this public house since it had been bought by auction last year. Cllr Rowley was able to confirm that Corby Borough Council, on occasion, had been renting the B&B facilities for the last nine months, on a temporary basis, to provide homes for temporarily homeless or displaced persons. However, he understood that when the renovation work was completed, the building would be opened as a pub again with B&B accommodation as before. Kettering Borough Council are not using it as it doesn’t comply with their criteria.

Yellow Lines. Concern was raised at the length of time since agreement was reached to get these lines in place and their actual appearance. Cllr Rowley explained that whilst all the official contracts were in place, KBC had a large number of sites to ‘yellow-line’ throughout the Borough, and they would all be done at the same time, which was both efficient and cost effective. The image here, shows the official notice (on the lamp post at the bottom of Wood Street, which explains the poor image) and the number of sites to be yellow-lined. As can be seen, this includes the Newton Road, and Grafton Road/Wood Street sites. It was understood that the Parish Council have been pressing for action as soon as possible.

Motorcycles.  A number of unlicensed and uninsured motorcycles had been seen around the village, mainly at weekends. This is of concern to the police and they are under investigation. The police have requested that if any are seen then a call should be made to tel: 101, noting the date, time and location. It would be advantageous to ask for a crime number when calling, as the greater the number of reports, the sooner that the police can take further action. It was also said that the motorcycles are brought in a van, so if anyone sees them being unloaded, try to get a description of the van, including the registration number. The police also said that taking photographs of them as they drove (badly) past would not be recommended. Nothing was said about taking pictures from the safety of your house.

2omph Signage. There was a general discussion about this signage as some thought that the speeding through the village was partly caused by the inability to see the signs as they were too high. Cllr Rowley responded by saying this concern had been passed to the correct department, who had sent out an official who confirmed that they were at the correct height and conformed to the criteria laid out for them. Other speed reducing efforts were mentioned, but the subject was rather unsatisfactorily concluded with the additional comment that the police radar guns were not calibrated to record anything under 30mph.

Raw Sewage in the River Ise. There have been reports of this seen in the brook, particularly around the ford and below the bridge. One resident had been reporting this to Anglian Water, however, the proper authority is Environmental Health. It was commented that the sewage pump just upriver from the ford is an old one and when a piece of the equipment gets stuck, which it does occasionally, rain or no rain, then to stop the sewage from backing up the (too) small pipes, it legally allows the overflow into the river. It was commented that to enlarge the sewage pipes in the village would entail a very high cost, but perhaps the Parish Council should be talking to KBC’s Environmental Health to replace the old pumping station. From documents we’ve seen here at the website, it would appear that the current sewage pipes, north of the river, were laid at the time that the Council houses were built in the early 1950’s and just look at how many houses have been built there since. This can’t be proved, so perhaps it’s time a serious study was done on this subject. I know, not easy when everything is underground, but not impossible, just expensive. Remember, I did say this was not an official report.

The meeting closed at around 7pm and was followed by the Parish Council’s Annual Meeting and this was followed by the Parish Council’s regular monthly meeting. Minutes for these two meetings will appear after they have been ratified at the June meeting.

Pam Hopkins

PS The image of the River Ise was taken when it was in flood with rainwater, just because the water colour is brown, doesn’t mean . . .

County Council Election Results

County Council
Election Results

The candidates standing for the Ise Division in the recent election, received the following number of votes:


Conservative                Victoria Perry         1469
Labour                          John Padwick          794
UKIP                             Jonathan Bullock     629
Liberal Democrat           James Peace           268

Marilyn – As you’ve never seen her before!

Blood Brothers, currently playing in the Village Hall until Saturday, has an extra WOW factor, in the form of a terrific image of Marilyn Monroe.

Local artist, Ricardo Insu-cao, has produced many of the latest GADS’ posters, but he’s outdone himself this time.

To get the full effect from this piece of art, book yourself into the Village Hall by phoning 01536 742257.

Tickets are Adults £7, concessions £6
Wine bar opens 7pm
Curtain up 7.30pm


County Council Elections

The next County Council election will take place on 4 May 2017.

The election will be called on 24 March, 2017 and all 57 of the council’s seats will be up for election.


The way we all register to vote has changed. The new system is called ‘Individual Electoral Registration’. You can still contact your local district or borough council to register to vote, or you can now register online. The deadline to register to vote in the next elections is Thursday 13 April 2017.
Under the old system the ‘head of every household’ could register everyone who lived at their address. Under the new system, everyone is responsible for registering themselves. You need to provide a few more details to register – including your national insurance number and date of birth. This makes the electoral register more secure.

How do I register to vote?

  1. Go to
  2. Fill in your name, address, date of birth and a few other details. You’ll also need your national insurance number, which can be found on your national insurance card, or in official paperwork such as payslips, or letters about benefits or tax credits
  3. Look out for a confirmation to say you’re registered.
    To find out more go to

Postal votes and proxy votes

If you are unable to vote at your polling station and would like a postal vote you need to apply by 5pm on 18 April 2017.
If you wish to appoint a proxy (someone to vote on your behalf at this election) you need to apply by 5pm on 25 April 2017. In both cases, you will need to contact your local district or borough council to obtain the required forms.

The Drop-in Session

Sunday 12th March 2017

11am – 2pm

The Parish Plan and what it’s all about.
An Exhibition of the Plan and some of the village organisations that make the village what it is.

 and, of course, where would an event at the Village Hall be without the essential refreshments?

Dallington Charity rep: Paul

Queen Street Road Closure Notice

A small, but important, part of Queen Street will be closed for up to four days from 3rd April: this will allow contractors to install a gas supply to No 1 Queen Street.


Diversion knowledge is essential if you are a visitor to the village, however, residents who use the bridge and ford, from either direction, will be aware that access will have to be via the A4300 (New Road on the map), whether from West Street or Queen Street.

Map and contact details below:

How fortunate (or perhaps carefully planned) that Geddington school is closed for the Easter break from 31st March to 19th April.

Now you see it, now you don’t!

Storm Doris created much damage and destruction throughout parts of Great Britain and Geddington also had its problems.


One of the trees that was damaged in the village, was one that affected the use of the ford. Previously this tree had been pollarded, but despite the lowering of its crown, its roots weren’t strong enough to stand up to the winds in late February.

Our keen-eyed correspondent, Frank Harding, was on hand to capture the removal of the tree by photo image and film.

And how it was done . . .

Other damage, here in Grafton Road . . .

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