- Village Life
As another year of website activity draws to a close the Website Committee took the opportunity to look back over a very busy year. While the wider world was coming to terms with Brexit, Trump, massacres and momentous trips on the Space Station, the website kept its focus firmly on life in and around Geddington.
Firstly a big thank you to all our loyal sponsors and those of you who have sent in news, made the news or reported on the news – no ‘fake news’ here!
We hope you enjoy the run of photo images attached to this post and that they bring back happy memories for most of you and remind us that we live in a very caring, fun loving and active community in which we can all play our part. With around 56,000 hits last year we know that many of you use the website as a reference point, a source of news and information and a way of keeping in touch if you are now living further away.
We need your help to make it even better.The website committee is keen to encourage a few more village residents to join the team, feeding news, information and archive material into our records.
Are you interested in local history? Could you do some research for us? Or write an article?
Are you a keen photographer? Could you take photographs at village events? Or edit some of our archive material?
Do you attend meetings of a village organisation? Could you keep the website up to date with your news?
Do you live in an area of the village that is under represented in our news? Make your voice heard!
We’d really like to hear from you and discuss how we can put your talents to good use, making the website as relevant and far reaching as possible.
The good news? We don’t hold lots of meetings; we are very informal; we share ideas (and we have some good ones!) and, more importantly, the workload, and it is very rewarding to see our efforts on the web!
Do join us! Get in touch using the Contact Us facility on the website or ring Pam or Janet on 742292 or 726416 to find out more.
We look forward to hearing from you and to continuing to provide the best service possible to the village.
Tony Locock, Pam Hopkins, Janet Jones and Ricardo Insua Cao – Your website committee.
and, of course, where would an event at the Village Hall be without the essential refreshments?
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.
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 . . .
The summer programme for adult learning courses, scheduled for April – July, can now be booked online. There are hundreds of courses covering dozens of subjects taking place at venues throughout Northamptonshire.
Go to: www.northamptonshire.gov.uk and search for ‘Adult Learning Courses.
On Wednesday 15 February, friends and family gathered at Geddington Church to celebrate the life of Angie Cooksley, who died peacefully on 2 February aged 80. This is the family eulogy that we would like to share with those who were unable to attend the service, or for those present who requested to read it again. Please do feel free to share with anyone who would like to read it. It was read at the funeral by Angie’s granddaughter.
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Please click on this link to read the eulogy:
Boudicca in a Cottage A Tribute to Angie Cooksley
Welcome to February 1929
The Holding sisters continue to live in The Bungalow on Kettering Road; Carrie works as a tailoress and applies her skill to everything from evening gowns to corsets. Daisy, struggling with ill health looks after the young boarders who stay with them during term time at St Alban’s School, Geddington.
January has been a long month and much of it has been spent looking after their father so the two sisters were pale and weary as they anticipated February and the start of spring. Daisy mentions that three of the old elms on the New Road have been cut down. ‘it seems a pity but I suppose they really were not safe on a main thoroughfare’
Sadly the winter was to remain harsh and cold and the reality of life with no central heating and limited water resources gave the sisters the pain of chilblains, the misery of damp beds and the dreariness of frostbitten days. There was some fun though and, at the end, a larder full of marmalade and a garden full of snowdrops and spring bulbs.
February 28 days
1st: The heavy rain I wished for came last night and, like many another wish fulfilled it was not exactly perfect. For oh! how the wind blew and the rain beat on the roof and windows. We were all restless.
Somehow we have felt tired and off colour all day. I finished my book and listened to the Boxing Match at the Albert Hall between Phil Scott and Sandwina. Was it depraved taste? I like to experience most things and judge for myself.
2nd: Candlemas Day. There is nothing like work,especially housework when one feels rather grey and so we bustle about and clean up generally. Just before dinner, as I was expending my energy polishing floors , I was surprised by a tap at the back window and there gazing at me in a scared manner was a gander! Poor old boy he didn’t like leaving his familiar farm yard but I hear he has settled down now in his new home with his two wives.
3rd: St Blasius, the patron saint of throats. Colder but bright and beautiful. Sitting listening to the Wireless Service I heard Cowper’s beautiful hymn ‘Oh for a closer walk with God’ and at once I was in a little old summerhouse at the end of a worn, flagged path in an old world garden at Olney. In thought I had gone back to a sunny summer evening not so long ago when Little Sister and I sat there after hearing stories of the poet.
I think to myself how many famous men and women began life in a tiny village. The towns need the villages, and the villages the towns.
4th: I think this must be the sharpest frost of this very cold winter. Nearly everything in the pantry was frozen and we had ‘frozen mutton’ for dinner. Whilst watching for our daily Carrier, a most marvelous person by the way, I noticed more spikes of bulbs pushing up through the frost bound soil. I have just been complimented(?) Joan (a child boarder) has asked me if I was alive 600 years ago and did I know Queen Eleanor?..The children have no idea of age and I have been trying to explain to them the allotted three score years and 10. They were greatly interested in Great Grannie Croft’s photograph.
6th Wednesday: A lovely bright morning. I discovered I needed a few things from town badly. Well, it really was time to buy Seville oranges for the marmalade and off we sallied! It was delightful to step from our warm cosy ‘Bus right into the Picadilly Cafe and to sit sipping coffee and eating cream doughnuts. The shop next door was a galaxy of splendour. Golden oranges, gleaming lemons and grape-fruit, lettuce, celery and all the things my soul loves. Bowls of snowdrops, hyacinths, sheaves of tulips, baskets of mimosa and there in a gilded cage in the corner, a pair of brilliant green love birds.
11th Monday: The children come in all aglow and rosy from their exercise in the chill air. I wish I looked as fresh and happy when I am cold! Whips and tops are the great thing now. Marbles are quite a secondary consideration.
12th Pancake Day: We had our Pancakes last night! The very sharpest frost we have had for many winters. Everything frozen. It seems the best thing to take the children for a run after tea. They are surprised to find I can really spin a top. We run races to keep warm. The new moon was high in the sky. Ominous cracks are heard in the red water tank.
13th Ash Wednesday: Winter tightens its grip. We keep fires going and the stove is in requisition. What shall we do if it lasts? The brook is frozen and this morning the children were sliding on it as they came from church.
14th St. Valentine’s Day: The scene is more wintry than ever as the air is full of feathery snow. Our ruse of sending the kiddies valentines is quite a success. They are properly deceived and duly delighted. The icicles still hang from the eaves in spite of the sunshine. The eggs were frozen in the hen roost. Roast potatoes and hot drinks send us all warm to bed.
16th: We are constantly hewing and melting ice.
18th Monday again: Quite early the marmalade was on a-boilin’. So severe and cold was it we were glad to light the stove to assist in warming up the icy air. All the water, hard and soft, is frozen and we are as careful as can be of every drop. As soon as the girlies come from school they are off to play in the Wood Yard. Eagerly they remove the ‘ice-berg’, otherwise the solid block that was once a zinc of soft water. They are resplendent in ‘camphor bags’ suspended by a cord round their neck. A preventive of colds I presume! May the charm work.
I am obliged to sit with my feet in ‘mustard and water’ sipping hot grog.
This water business is as worrying as a Summer’s drought. Soft water a solid block and when we do manage to hew it and thaw it, it is dirty and acid. Hard water pumps frozen, or otherwise out of gear, and the village well such yards away. The dykes so far are full of frozen mud. So nasty is the water we cannot wash our faces clean. Today Little Sister gave me some of her lavender water and I cleansed my skin with that!!
Many thanks, again, to Frank Harding, for being in the right place, at the right time, and having the right equipment!
Chaired by Nick Batchelor, Vice-Chairman of the Parish Council, the discussion first covered the reprise of the Wildlife Trust’s recommendations and then an update on the site clearance by the GVFB during January – considering some of the weather that we had in January, the members of the GVFB who did this work should be highly commended for their efforts!
The meeting then went on to discuss the planting of the areas that needed this most and it was decided that the sloping bank should be addressed first.
The plants that were to be used would all have to be native species, as suggested by the Wildlife Trust, some of which could be transplanted in small quantities from other areas of the Meadows. Other plants can be purchased at a reasonable cost, but it was made plain that these plants must be suitable for wildlife ponds – not all the plants used in garden ponds are suitable, or native *.
The Wildlife Trust recommended that this work should be carried out during February, weather permitting, as some wildlife would be making its way to wet areas by then.
However, the whole of the Meadows is a designated flood plain and although it’s been a particularly dry winter so far, there are still lots of damp and wet places in the Meadows, not to mention the River Ise and the old river bed near the path,
However, in order to give a home to those insects and mammals that would be attracted to the pond, a date was set for the first plantings to take place on 18 February. If the weather is not suitable, then an alternative date of 25 February was suggested. Who will be doing the transplanting? Several members of the group offered their services, well, we did start this post with the words: “seriously interested people”.
Other useful suggestions that cropped up during the meeting included contacting:
– Brigstock Country Park as a source of information and possibly plants, if they are doing a partial pond clearance at any time,
– Boughton Estates, for the same reasons,
– Asking for donations of plants from village residents, subject to the proviso mentioned above *.
The Wildlife Trust recommend the following plants for wetlands and water margins: Water Mint, Gypsywort, Greater Bird’s-foot Trefoil, Water Chickweed and Water Forget-me-not, as well as less common species such as Mare’s-tail, Bur-marigold, Golden and Marsh Dock. By no means a complete list, but the pond isn’t a very large one, by any measure.
Finally, the subject of recording wildlife was touched on. When (and not if) wildlife is seen not only in the pond, but throughout any part of the village, then the following organisation is the one to go to, to record the sightings:
One last comment: any work in the Meadows, donated by the Duke of Buccleuch to the village, are subject to the approval and permission of the Parish Council. Nick will take a report of the meeting back to the February PC Meeting on Monday 13 February, where it is hoped, the suggestions and decisions will be ratified.