Sheldon Jottings for April 2014

As we write (16th March) we have had a lovely fine week with much sunshine but there has been an icy cold wind the last couple of days. The first lambs have been reported at Johnson Lane Farm but lambs are not expected until the beginning of April at Top Farm. The daffodils are just beginning to flower, the larks and our garden birds are singing again. In the wild, the cheery celandines, coltsfoot and butterbur flowers are now appearing. Roll on Spring!

However, Easter is coming and that means our first Cream Tea Sunday is on April 20th, Easter Sunday. Help is needed for this and for the following two Bank Holiday Sundays in May and the one at the end of August. Please volunteer if you can – it is 3 hours of enjoyable chat and fun whilst welcoming our village friends and supporters and the visitors to our lovely area. The Village Hall is undergoing some refurbishment and the Cream Tea monies are a considerable help towards the cost.

Our Parish Meeting and AGM is on April 9th so do come and perhaps volunteer for a role on one of the various committees.

Dear Reggie, the fox terrier friend of Angie and Andy, is absolutely bursting with pride as one of his immediate relatives was in the Grand Final at Crufts this year! Quite an achievement….

Did you know about the Farming Life Centre? It is a local farming charity and offers a free confidential advice service to farmers about business and farming matters. They also offer free support if there are health and wellbeing worries. Please do get in touch for more information on 01298 85162 or or [email protected] The Centre is based in the courtyard of farm buildings at Blackwell Hall Farm at Blackwell not too far from Sheldon.


Wednesday 9th April – Parish Meeting and AGM 7:30pm Village Hall

Wednesday 16th April – Sheldon History Group Meeting 7.30pm Village Hall
John Titterton of the Ashbourne Heritage Society will be talking to us about the ancient market town of Ashbourne and its many fine old buildings and customs. All very welcome

Sunday 20th April – Cream Teas 2pm – 5pm Village Hall

Village Hall Refurbishment

A big thank you to The Co-operative Membership Community Fund for the donation towards the Hartington Memorial Hall (Sheldon) refurbishment. Funds have also been raised from our village Fate and famous Bank Holiday cream teas and produce table; all of which are being put to good use.

The renovation of the hall floor has now been completed and is looking spectacular. Thanks must go to FloorCare Services from Belper especially Tina and Danny who worked very hard and did an excellent job bringing the tired floor back to life.

The next stage is to update the heating, this will be done in the next few weeks and a further update will be posted.

Sheldon Jottings for September 2013

It is almost September and the last of the hay is in. The swallows and house martins are preparing to depart from Sheldon on their momentous journey south to warmer climes. Their exuberant chattering is a wonderful country sound and we are sad to see them go but we always look forward with great anticipation to their arrival again next Spring. A badger was seen snuffling its way down the village street the other evening. It eventually wound its way between the cottages to the fields so we hope it found its way home. We have had wonderful Summer weather this year and it has been marvellous to see so many grandchildren enjoying the delights of Sheldon especially the hens, cows and calves, sheep and lambs, horse and foal, dogs, pigs and of course Bernard!

The final Cream Tea Day of the year took place on August Bank Holiday Sunday and was another success with over £150 collected for village hall funds. After a false start the weather was kind in the afternoon with visitors sitting outside enjoying their teas. Our hard working band of helpers enjoy seeing and chatting with our ravenous customers (many of whom have walked a long way) – its just less interesting when you happen to be on washing up duty!

Sadly Ralph will no longer be delivering the Peak Advertiser which he has delivered voluntarily for the last 20 years in all weathers. This is a remarkable record and service to the community. His cheery whistle and friendly chats as he wended his way through the village on his rounds will be sorely missed. Ralph – many, many thanks. His round has been taken over by the Taberner family.

The £12,000 worth of building work on the Church is now complete. The building has had pointing work, renovated guttering and the undercroft entrance made safe and secure. The work has left the Church with nothing in the coffers so hard times lie ahead.

Our website goes from strength to strength and has reached 27,000+ hits over the last two years from all over the world! How can we possibly have so many avid readers? Is it nostalgia for village life we wonder? We, of course, know there are many disadvantages of rural living, but we, who live in Sheldon, know that the advantages considerably outweigh them.

After the shed break-ins in our area we must all be extra vigilant and think seriously about our security and of fitting a shed alarm. Drive and shed alarms are available at a cheap subsidised low cost from the local Safer Neighbourhood Team at Bakewell Police Station (open 9.00am – 1:00pm Mon – Sat).

The Parish Meeting held during the month decided not to allocate Sheldon Day funds until the meeting in October, when fewer of us will be on holiday. The equipment is now stored away in Ken’s barns ready for another year – we must thank Ken whole-heartedly not only for storing this not inconsiderable amount of ‘stuff’ but also again this year for the use of his fields for car parking. Sheldon Day could not operate successfully without the support and generosity of all the residents of the village.

Peter and Sarah are getting married on September 7th in All Saints Church, Mackworth, and hope soon to be in their lovely new home here on the farm. We wish them and Harriet a long and happy life together.

Dates for the Diary

History Group Meeting

Wednesday 18th September
7:30pm at Hartington Memorial Hall

Speaker – Ken Smith – Peak District National Park Authority’s Senior Conservation Officer. A rare chance to learn more about the Ancient Monuments of the Park and gain a new perspective  on the area in which we live.

Magpie Mine Open Day

Saturday 14th September
12:00pm – 5:00pm at Magpie Mine

The Peak District Mines Historical Society are running tours and have a stall selling mugs and publications, amongst other things. Why not wander over there, it is so much part of Sheldon’s history, and you never know you may join them in preserving our industrial heritage.

St Michael and All Angels

Tuesday September 3rd – 10:00am Vicar’s Coffee Morning at the Cock and Pullet
Sunday 8th September – 9:00am Holy Communion
Sunday 15th September – 9:00am Holy Communion
Sunday 29th September – 10:00am The Benefice Eucarist to celebrate St Michael and All Angels

Sheldon Jottings for August 2013

The Fell Race was a great success, not so many runners as previously but considering the hot weather it was not the best conditions for running such a gruelling race. Almost 100 runners was considered a very good turnout. What impressed the Sheldonians was the great atmosphere of enjoyment, friendly rivalry and excitement. It was also superb running – to walk round the course would be enough for us! Congratulations must go to Phil and his team for their flawless organisation.

Sheldon Day 2013

Sheldon Day 2013

Sheldon Day thankfully dawned cloudy and cooler than the sweltering, humid temperatures we had been experiencing. As usual the village swung into action and one of the most colourful and action-packed village fete days began. To arrive and park with the help of John, Mick and Phil then walk through the village in its wonderful setting was a totally unique experience. You pass the cake stall – irresistible, a cream tea – superb, Ethel back with her stall, splat the rat, pick a golden nail, buy a card or painting, take a luck dip (really for children but it is amazing how many adults have a go). Then browse the book, plant and bric-a-brac stalls, listen to the band, try to win a bottle or chocolate or many other delights and you are still only half way round. On past the Church with its stunning floral display, go wang a wellie, inspect tractors, engines, produce and animals. Have a go on the coconut shy, watch or show your canine friend in Sheldon’s truly unique dog show, learn about our village history and catch – or drop – an egg. Watch the mass of coloured balls rolling down the street and enjoy many other delights such as pork sandwiches and ice cream…the list is endless!

There were some incidents. One dog show competitor in the ‘ 6 hairiest legs class’ took one look at the opposition and bottled out! Ian had someone bring back a ‘bad ‘ coconut! A cake left on the cake stall to collect later was ‘exchanged’ for an ‘inferior’ (costing less) one! The first prize of the day, however, must go to the sight of Bernard the turkey, sitting in the front passenger seat of Oliver’s Landrover being driven back to his pad with one claw hanging nonchalantly out of the window – ever the survivor!

This magnificent day was organised by a village of some 80 inhabitants – it never ceases to amaze us how it is done. Thanks to Andrew and the organising team for another most successful year and our congratulations to everyone who was involved. The preliminary totals have been posted – well over £3,100 has been collected for our various necessary causes in the village. As a visitor from Australia wrote in the Church visitor’s book ‘Well done Sheldon!’

The Tractor Run on the Sunday was also a great success. We counted 25 tractors of all ages taking part including the Police tractor. What a stirring sight they were as they all roared out of the village.

We have a newcomer to our beautiful and lively village. A steady flow of admirers have been to visit Shelly, a foal, who was born during the weekend of 6-7th July at Rose Farm. She is the first foal to be born there for many years and is owned by Pat and Ralph’s grandson, Matthew. Despite this and the excitement of Sheldon Day, the cycle of the farming year goes on with silage and some hay gathered, sheep have been shorn and all the 101 maintenance jobs are being done.

On a very sad note we hear Wendy S’s mother died during Sheldon Week – we send our deepest sympathy to Wendy and her family at this difficult time.

Georgina informs us that Derbyshire County Council has let her know that the bottom of Kirk Dale will be closed from the 19th until the 21st August for ‘tree work’. We will all need to use alternative routes into and out of the village during these 3 days. DCC insist that this section of road is called Trueblue Lane and not Kirk Dale as we all know it (they say Kirk Dale is our colloquial name for it – how wrong can they be! We all know Trueblue Lane as a track, certainly not vehicular, don’t we?). Thank goodness our parish chair pursued where exactly DCC meant when they said Trueblue Lane would be closed!!!

Dates for the Diary

  • Parish Meeting – Wednesday 21st August in the Village Hall
  • Cream Teas – Sunday 25th August from 2pm in the Village Hall
  • There will be no Vicar’s Coffee Morning or History Group Meeting in August

Sheldon Jottings for June 2013

The swallows are here! The plants in the garden are growing strongly and the chore of cutting the grass begins. Sam’s pretty plant corner is awash with plants for sale including some vegetables and herbs. All the lambs are born and are enjoying being alive, entertaining us in the fields. On a sad note, however, Elaine’s oldest sheep has died at the ripe old age of 23 – has anyone heard of one older than this?

The Sheldonians were gravely concerned to learn that a sheep was killed in Sheldon on Bank Holiday Sunday. It was being worried by a dog with its owners vainly calling to it. By the time the farmer reached the field the dog and its owners were nowhere to be seen – when will people learn to keep dogs on leads in fields with farm animals. The poor sheep was from a long line that was selected for breeding purposes, so she was very valuable and not just in monetary terms. If anybody has any information as to who might have been responsible, please contact us by email in strict confidence.

Our first Cream Tea was held on May Bank holiday Sunday, a great success. Cream teas were sold out and at one time the queue stretched out of the door! The lovely weather must have tempted people to visit our beautiful part of the world. A produce table did a brisk trade and an exhibition of paintings from the art group who meet regularly in the Village Hall added to the occasion. A grand total of £200+ was raised which goes to support the village – well done everyone who was involved – a superb effort.  The next Cream Tea was on Spring Bank holiday, Sunday 26th May, but there are further opportunities to enjoy one of our famous cream teas on both Sheldon Day and August Bank Holiday.

The Lambing Service was held in May and was as lively as it was enjoyable. With 31 participants, Andrew Herbert on the organ, lambs from Top Farm, Rev. Tony led the service. It focused on making the connection between the teachings of the church and everyday life in our small community. It was an unforgettable occasion, made more memorable for seeing the Rev. on his hands and knees attempting to get that prize winning photo of the children giving bottles of milk to the lambs!

We are reminded that Noel and Adrienne celebrate their 59th wedding anniversary on 5th June – our very best wishes and congratulations go to them both.

We heard of success for William and Alec J.  At the Buxton Festival of Music, William gained 2 first places and 1 second place for his piano playing and Alec, who has not been playing the piano for long, achieved a third place. Well done to both!

Welcome to Sue F. who has recently moved to Sheldon. She is living in South View Cottage near the top of the village. We hope she enjoys her time with us.


The next History Group meeting is Weds 19th June. We will be strolling around the Lime Kilns and other features in the fields around our village.  Meet with us at the village hall at 7.00pm (no charge), and learn about some of the lost and largely forgotten aspects of Sheldon’s past.

Vicar’s Coffee Morning in the pub on 11th June at 10.00 am with the meeting in church afterwards.

The Parish Meeting is Weds 12th June at 7.30 pm