Sheldon Jottings for December 2018

Now the clocks have been put back, the grass cut for the last time, bonfire night has been and gone, the leaves have fallen and the foggy and frosty mornings are ‘delighting’ us again – winter is almost here! Wonder what hibernation would be like? On second thoughts it would be such a waste of time when there is so much to be done, so much of interest to learn about.

In the middle of October we heard the sad news that Ken Brocklehurst had passed away. Ken was born in Sheldon and lived all his life here. In fact in many ways Sheldon and the farm he and his father built over their lifetimes was his life, along with his family and friends. Ken always wanted to be a farmer.

After his parents died in 1985 Ken continued to work Rose Farm on his own, focusing on sheep and large Simmental cattle. The quality of the animals he reared was well known. He won prizes for his sheep not only at the local Ashover Show, where he won ‘Best in Show’, but also at the East Midlands Show, a national event.

He had a great knowledge of the village and its inhabitants. He supported all that went on, quietly, without fuss and mostly unheralded. In 2012 he was awarded an ‘Excellence in the Community Award‘ by the County Council at a ceremony in the Dome in Buxton.

With the passing of Ken it seems to be the passing of an era here in our village. We will all miss him.

Following the funeral service at St Michael and All Angels Church in Sheldon, Ken was laid to rest in the churchyard alongside his mother and father. Our thoughts are with the family and all those who knew him – a very special man.

On the 31st October two small persons knocked on our door dressed to frighten – of course it was Halloween! It turned out to be George and Alice. We gave out chocolate and sweets and were rewarded with smiles and thank-you. Good for them – keeping traditions alive.

On a cold, foggy morning recently in Buxton, William J took his driving test. We are pleased to say that he passed with flying colours – life will never be the same now for Andrew and Amanda!

The Remembrance Service on the historic 11th November was very well attended in our church, as people wished to think seriously about those dreadful years, their aftermath and the global future. The service was taken by the Reverend Tony and he was assisted, as he said, by modern technology – a screen and projector that gave us the whole service interspersed with pictures from those WW1 years, including the war graves where ‘our men’ are buried. Quite an innovation for Sheldon we thought, so thank you Rev. Tony.

Do come to the Carol Service in Church on Sunday 23rd – it is always well worth it and we are told that singing is very good for us, especially community singing…

The Church Draw winner this month is Gillian Willerton with number 41.

A very Happy Christmas to everyone in the village and, of course, to our neighbours in Ashford.

DIARY DATES

Tuesday 4th December – Parish Meeting in Village Hall 7:30pm
Sunday 23rd December – Carol Service in Sheldon Church 4:00pm
Tuesday 25th Christmas Morning – Communion in Church 9:00am

Sheldon Jottings for January 2016

When you receive this Parish Magazine it will be the beginning of January 2016 so we wish you all, together with our friends in Ashford, a very Happy and Peaceful New Year.

Actually, as we write this it is the 12th of December and the Christmas decorations are going up, cards are being written, festive meals are being planned and for the children the excitement about Santa’s visit is mounting. We have yet to enjoy our Nativity and the Midnight Mass.

We had a very enjoyable wreath making evening led by Lindsey, helped enormously with plenty of mulled wine and mince pies!  Now our front doors are ‘dressed’ and many of our houses and gardens have decorative lights and look so welcoming.

At the Parish Meeting we were told our main street village trees had had a safety inspection – important not just for the people living nearby but also for insurance purposes. The defibrillator which we will have from the British Heart Foundation, will probably be attached to the wall in the middle of the village near the bus stop and the public notice board. We will then have a quick training session to become familiar with the equipment. We are told no-one need worry about how to use it as it really is so very easy!

The village has already had its first (2.5cms) snow but thankfully it disappeared within a day. We have also had high winds, rain and more rain, murk and frosts, the latter causing the first collision with ‘that’ wall on the bend near the bottom of Kirk Dale. Oh dear – here we go again. Do remember our road and Kirk Dale will only be gritted by DCC as a last resort when all other ‘more important’ roads have been treated.  Also DDDC will now only provide piles of grit by the roadside for a hefty price – a double whammy for us. We are hoping to buy some cheaper elsewhere.

The History Group had a very interesting and thorough talk given by David Windle on the Ashford Marble Works which were situated at the bottom of Kirk Dale. If you were not there you missed learning about the skill of the craftsmen who worked here doing this intricate inlaid work which is now rare. If any of you have some the Group would love to see it but you can go to Buxton Museum to see some beautiful examples.

Dave and Gill have recently returned from Yalova in Turkey where they witnessed first hand the plight of many refugees – Iraqis, Iranians and Syrians forced to flee for a variety of reasons. Each refugee has a tale to tell of suffering and loss and a very difficult journey. ‘We were helping with the distribution of winter stoves to help keep them warm, of baby milk, nappies, fuel and food supplies, and listening to their stories. We went to one makeshift home where about 30 Kurdish Syrians are living in 2 semi-derelict bungalows, many barefoot kids running around simply wanting a hug, one very sick lady in a room warmed by one of the new heaters. We were served tea and they told us the story of their escape, walking from village to village as IS moved in and destroyed the place they had called home for centuries.

On another occasion we met one young Arab, about 20 years old, who showed us the scars on his chest where IS had punished him with electric shocks for smoking.  We heard for ourselves the atrocities of IS – every refugee has a story of sadness, of violence, of loss. We met 2 teenage girls whose mother had died on the journey, now they have no-one. Yet for all these sad stories we also heard stories of hope and of great generosity like the Iraqi Pastor who had escaped kidnap and fled for his life with his young family, now working to help these refugees; like the Pastor who had found the young man wounded by IS living on the street in Istanbul and arranged for him to go to the Yalova project where he is slowly rebuilding his life. Some of these people will face death if they return to their homeland because of their faith, others have no homeland left to return to. It was a privilege to hear their stories, to meet such brave and courageous people.’

If you would like to know more or would like to support this work please get in touch with Gill.

The lucky winner of the Church Draw for December was Elizabeth Fisher.

DATES FOR THE DIARY

Wednesday January 20th in the Village Hall at 7.30pm
History Group talk – Our House

Sheldon Jottings for December 2015

It was with great sadness that we heard that Adrienne Blackshaw had passed away on 25th October. Our thoughts are with the family at this sad time. Adrienne had lived in Sheldon all her life and for over 30 years she had acted as a Church Warden. At services she always had a welcoming smile for newcomers and invariably led the singing with a wonderfully clear voice. She was never happier than when her family was gathered around her, or visitors called to pass the time of day. At midday there was always a post van parked outside the house as generations of postmen were welcomed for tea, cake and a gossip!

Adrienne’s funeral, held on 6th November, was a true celebration of her life. The service, led by her nephew the Rev. Chris Blackshaw, was extremely well attended. Pictures of her life shown on a big screen illustrated the importance of her family in her life, and a refreshingly lively account of her life and character was given by the Rev. and was much appreciated. Adrienne is interred close to the door of the little Church she loved so much and to which she wished all donations in her memory to be given

The Remembrance Day service saw another good congregation as we remembered those who fell in the service of their country, particularly the five young men from our little village who are commemorated on the memorial in the Church. The wreath was laid by Steve (Emma Gregory’s fiancé), who has just returned from service in the Falklands.

The Playing Field is shortly to have a set of football goal posts and, it is hoped, two horse chestnut trees to supplement the variety of trees already planted there. We have been asked to request that anyone practising golf on the field to please take all their golf balls home with them, The mower throws them up and they present a danger to those cutting the grass and anyone else nearby.

Have you joined the happy band of people in the village who now have superfast wireless broadband provided by W3Z? They say the service is so fast now and they can do so much more via their computer, even watch a film or two.

At this time of year there are a busy round of activities in the village. There is a Christmas Wreath Night led by Lindsey on the 7th and a Table Decoration Night led by Angela on the14th. Two very enjoyable occasions.

The History Group is having its annual ‘Christmas Do’ on the 16th… The entertainment is again being provided by Simon Unwin with his unique blend of slides, music and storytelling. All you need to do is to bring yourself and some ‘eats’ to enjoy a very entertaining evening.

We hope as many people as possible will attend our bi-annual Nativity, led by Canon Tony. We leave the Church to re-enact the Christmas story with readings and carols as we walk through the village to the barn/stable at Top Farm to meet the baby Jesus lying in a manger. This truly atmospheric event, to which everyone is invited, will be held on Sunday 20th December at 4:00pm. There will also be a Midnight Mass on 24th December at 11:30pm…a perfect start to Christmas.

Amid all this activity we must not forget that there is a Parish Meeting on Wednesday 9th December, we look forward to meeting you there.

The winner of the Church Draw for November is Mary Barber from Monyash.

We wish everyone a very happy and enjoyable Christmas…including Bernard, the Top Farm, ultimately very lucky, top turkey!

Dates for the Diary

Monday December 7th in the Village Hall at 7:30pm
Wreath Making Night

Wednesday December 9th in the Village Hall at 7:30pm
Parish Meeting

Monday December 14th in the Village Hall at 7:30pm
Table Decoration Night

Wed December 16th in the Village Hall at 7:30pm
History Group ‘Christmas Do’

Sunday December 20th at 4pm in the Church
Village Nativity

Thursday December 24th at 11:30pm in the Church
Midnight Mass

Sheldon Jottings for February 2015

The lengthening days and the snowdrops pushing through the soil, are heralding the start of a new year. Now we can begin to look forward to the joys of Spring in our most beautiful part of the world.

In case you were wondering – Bernard, the turkey, has again escaped the Christmas pot and so also have his two wives. He is a very lucky bird!!

We could not comment on our Christmas services as January’s copy had to be in by 13th December. However, the Carol Service in our small, welcoming church was very well attended and much enjoyed. The Midnight Mass on Christmas Eve was extraordinary in that Sheldon has not had such a service for many years. It too, was well attended with a beautiful atmosphere in the soft light of the candles. Our younger members performed some of the readings most eloquently and it was truly a wonderful setting.

At the History Group Meeting on 17th December we heard the ghostly story of Finn, now a local legend written and performed with the requisite air of mystery by Simon Unwin! This was followed by our Christmas ‘do’ and a really good time was had by all.

The December Parish Meeting put us on course for the next two months. We heard that stiles had been rebuilt, that the precept is frozen for another year and we heard of the lack of gritting through the village and thus the first car accident, due to the council’s short-sighted policy.

Also BT’s idea of putting a defibrillator in the telephone box, which would then be decommissioned and the village would be responsible for its upkeep. The feeling in the meeting was, as with other villages, this ploy has been tried, and that we should allow BT to continue their legal obligation to maintain our telephone box. But we should seriously consider the option of a defibrillator to be kept accessible 24/7 elsewhere in the village. Have you thought of where? A defibrillator can be used by anyone, as step-by-step instructions are given for non-medics.

Of course, we all know that since the first skidding accident on our untreated roads (well before Christmas) there have been others. The snow came down thick and fast on Boxing Day evening – up to 8 inches (20 cm) in places. This really did curtail everyone’s movements for a few days before we had a plough or any gritting. The day after Boxing Day, eight vehicles came to grief down Kirk Dale, although thankfully we understand they did not go into each other. The police were called but surprisingly, this may not help our predicament, as the fact that we live at 1000 feet and quickly become snow-bound or ice-bound, falls on the deaf ears of our so-called representatives – council members and officers. We know that in one part of the outskirts of Sheffield, on very minor streets, they too had been denied any gritting, but after some collisions and much protest by the local people aided by some of their local councillors, this vital service has been reinstated there. They do not get the snow that we do…what a nonsense this all is.

We are now, as a village, fully paid up members of the Friends of the Peak District, which is an arm of the CPRE (Council for the Protection of Rural England). This organisation does sterling work scrutinising and commenting on every contentious planning issue.

DIARY DATES

Wednesday 11th February – 7.30pm Village Hall
Parish Meeting

Wednesday 18th February – 7.30pm Village Hall
Sheldon History Group

Sheldon Jottings for January 2015

A Happy New Year to all our readers!

As we write this (13th December), it is the run-up to the Christmas festivities and all that entails. Already we have had some snow up here. Do remember we are denied any gritting on our road until everywhere else has been satisfied. This is even though the Derbyshire County Council gritter comes through the village to get to other, supposedly more important roads, and comes back to its base on our route too. Logical? Fair? We may well ask.

Do be constantly aware how dangerous our route down to the A6 is – what with the steep descent, made even more treacherous with the severe bends, whenever it is at all icy or slushy with snow. Do not be hassled by people from behind who are not savvy to our hazardous journey or who perhaps have a four-wheel drive vehicle and think that they cannot possibly skid. They can and they do. Already we have had one bad accident – the driver was fortunately OK, but the car was severely damaged.

Did you know that Brian’s big, brilliant ‘Sheldon Field Map’ now has pride of place in the village hall? It names every field in our parish which Brian has found through research from old records and talking to people. Some names are really fascinating, Thank you Brian for that and also the lovely drawings.

Our Christmas wreath-making evening was fun. A group of us made wonderful decorations for our front doors to welcome all who come through the village. A good social evening it was too, with mulled wine and mince pies to aid our concentration when fixing in that prickly holly! Thank you Lindsey for organising that. Next time we must persuade a few chaps to have a go to show their creative side!

The Christmas lunch at the Cock and Pullet was for all those with three score years plus of wisdom, experience and life’s challenges behind them. In recognition of this collective worldly-wise knowledge, the village offers a superb meal at the pub. Needless to say a good time was had by all and they extend their thanks to everyone, especially Kath and her staff who do the cooking and look after them.

The Parish Meeting was, unusually for us, quite depleted on the night. Having said that, it was rather a wild weather evening and a few lucky stalwarts were taking a break in sunny Australia where they each have far-flung family members. Think of us in shivering Sheldon, we say!  The good news is we now have a new secretary. Good luck Richard and thank you for taking on the job. We will therefore continue having our six meetings per year. Having a defibrillator easily accessible somewhere in the village was discussed and thought to be a very good idea. Any thoughts on where it could be available 24/7 please tell Alistair.

Stop Press

Sadly, Derbyshire Dales District Council (DDDC) have apparently been surprised by the bad winter weather, and increased amount of domestic waste/recycling generated over the Christmas/New Year Period. As of today (Wednesday January 7th), we are still without a recycling collection (over a week late), and were one day behind on our domestic waste collection. This surely shouldn’t have come as a surprise to DDDC, and sadly yet again Sheldon finds itself forgotten in preference to the villages that are easier to reach.

Dates for the Diary

History Group
Wednesday January 21st 7:30pm in the Village Hall
A short DVD on the history of Calver Mill and Weir and the River Derwent that connects them, through stories and photos of those who have lived, worked and played there.