Sheldon Jottings for September 2017

The family holiday season is in full swing as we write (Aug 12th) and by the time you read this it will be almost ‘back to school’ time again. Our short summer seems to go so quickly and we have certainly had more than our fair share of rain in this area. Sadly Bakewell Show was inundated and not just on one of the Show days but on both. Such real bad luck. Hay-making is definitely on hold until we get a longer spell of dry weather…..

On Sheldon Day (July 22nd) we were fortunate as, although rain was forecast, it held off until evening. What a brilliant day we had raising around £4000 for our village amenities – our little community should be VERY pleased. A big thank you to everyone. Just think – we are a population of around 65 people and together with our children, friends and relatives we can raise that amount of money on what is, for us, a quite large event. This money goes towards the upkeep of our village hall and playing field area – plus – the crippling costs of helping to maintain our beautiful little church – plus a small amount for our ‘golden oldies’ to have a Christmas lunch at the pub!

We are an amazing community.

Did you see the write-up and photos the roving reporter did for the Matlock Mercury? Such fame…. It’s a few years since we had a reporter visit our ever- popular Sheldon Day family event.

We now say Hello to our new neighbours at Manor Farm. Julia, John and family moved in around 3 weeks ago and we hope they will enjoy living in our community and enthrall at those amazing ‘top of the world’ views of our wonderful countryside from up there.

Nature notes over the last few months – We are so pleased to say that after an absence of 3 years, a pair of swallows have nested in our little barn again. We leave the top doors open each year hoping they will take up residence and this year a pair thought the old building would be perfect. However, overall there are so few swallows and house martins around the village this summer. So very sad. They need all the help they can get.

The spotted flycatchers did nest in the garden again this year – we are so lucky. They are such pretty little birds and they also (like the swallows) have to travel thousands of miles to get here from an area south of the equator and then back again. How DO they do it? We think the pair had 2 broods and worked so hard flying from their various perches (such as prominent tree branches or the roof of the bird table) to catch insects for their young. It was a lovely sight to watch. We actually photographed a young one which was close to a window. This was 3-4 weeks ago now and since a couple of days after that, we have neither seen any young nor the parents again. Surely a bit early to leave us to go back?

The gorgeous song thrushes were around but did not nest in our garden this year. They were heard singing many times nearby and were seen looking for worms and snails – lots of empty snail shells about. Sadly, early in the season we found a dead, fully-fledged one. Were they nesting in your garden? The different pairs of blackbirds nested in the front and back garden and they always seem to do well – we think there is quite some competition for territory and nest sites. We also had the robins and we saw the friendly young ones who came for tiny morsels as we weeded the garden.

If you want lots of wonderful butterflies in your garden you must have some Buddleia shrubs. On good days without rain or high wind the ones around us here have been covered with Red Admirals mainly, but also the occasional Peacock, Painted Lady, Small tortoiseshell and the White varieties. Also the wonderful flowers provide food for other insects and many different bees, not just our honey bees. A sight to behold…perhaps 20 + butterflies all at one time!

The defibrillator and CPR training evening in the village hall in July was very successful and we thank Alistair for guiding us and providing the mannequins for us to practise on. It was in part, a fun evening but obviously there were very serious issues and meaning behind what we were learning. If anyone wants to borrow a mannequin for themselves or their families to practise on then do let us know – we still have them.

The lucky winner of the Church Draw for August was Keith Blackshaw with number 83.

Sheldon Jottings for May 2015

We were all extremely upset to hear of the death of John Lomas-Cousins on 21st March after a long illness. We all knew John for his willingness to stop for a chat and his cheerful greetings for everyone he met. The funeral service and interment held on 1st April in our church, was led by Canon Tony Kaunhoven who spoke warmly of John’s life from catering college in Sheffield to his work in several catering establishments. The Rev Peter Davis also officiated. It was attended by so many friends and family that there was not room for everyone in the church. Afterwards refreshments were served in ‘The Cock and Pullet’. We have lost a friend and special member of our community and our thoughts are with Michelle at this very difficult time.

The Easter Service in our church, led by the Rev Peter Davis, was very well attended and included friends from California. It was good to see such a large congregation for this important date in the Christian calendar.

We heard our first curlew this year on 5th April during the wonderful Easter week we all enjoyed. Whilst looking for this bird Julia saw a swallow, perhaps just passing through, but the first of many we hope will have arrived here by the time you read this. There seemed to be fewer swallows and house martins in the village last year – perhaps more will successfully make the hazardous journey this Spring.

The History Exhibition held on 21st and 22nd March was a great success and many members of the village came to see photographs and information about the Sheldon Hoard, The Marble Works, The Water Supply and High Days and Holidays. There was also a fine display of old tools and curios, flints and pottery. Sheldon is a remarkable small village with a wealth of history to keep us all fascinated. Our thanks go to the History Group for such a fine effort and for educating us all.

The first Cream Tea of the year took place on Easter Sunday. It was a glorious day with people sitting outside the Hall enjoying their tea, the weather and the beauty of the setting. A table top sale of the most wonderful homemade produce was a magnet for visitors. It looked magnificent and the realistic prices meant that trade was brisk. Over £250 was raised for Hall funds – well done everyone. The next Cream Tea is to be on Sunday 3rd May and yet another on Whit Sunday 24th May. Two more dates for the Diary and a tea so delicious that we are sure you will never forget!

We would like to welcome Marie to the village and to our community. She has moved into South View Cottage and we hope she will enjoy living in beautiful Sheldon.

The Parish Meeting AGM was held on 8th April and we are pleased to report that Alistair has agreed to remain as our Chair and Richard has agreed to remain as our Secretary for the coming year. We thank them, particularly Alistair for his excellent work in guiding the village through the last 12 months and send them best wishes for the year to come. Alan brought a cheque for £250 on behalf of Padley Lodge Freemasons to kick start donations to fund a defibrillator for the village. Well done and thanks to Alan and the Freemasons.

Dates for the Diary

Cream Teas – Sunday 24th May at 2pm in the Village Hall
Yet another chance to enjoy one of the best cream teas you will ever have!

Sheldon Jottings for April 2015

Hopefully, we have seen the last of snow and the weather is beginning to improve as Spring is almost upon us. The snowdrops are still looking wonderful up here and the daffodils are beginning to bud up nicely. Many of us have helped to provide some food and water for the birds throughout Winter and they will now be thinking of nest building. The male chaffinches in particular are looking really smart.

With Easter comes Cream Teas – arrangements are well in hand – the Hall is looking superb after its refurbishment, people have volunteered to help and the scones, cream and jam are ordered. Don’t forget there is a sales table at each Cream Tea Day so we would be very grateful for any produce to sell in order to help swell the funds. The first Cream Tea Day is on Sunday April 5th from 2pm until 5pm in the Village Hall; we hope to see you there!

A new venture this year is a Table Top Sale to be held on Sunday April 26th in the Village Hall to raise funds, so hopefully we will all go along to give our support.

As we all know, Adrienne was taken to hospital recently and was quite poorly for a time but is now much better and is on her way to a full recovery. Both Adrienne and Elaine would like to thank everyone who sent her good wishes, cards and gave their support at a difficult time.

The Parish Meeting AGM takes place on Wednesday 8th April at 7.30pm. At this meeting we reflect on the progress we have made during the past year, receive reports from the Committees and look forward to the year to come. We would like to express our heartfelt thanks to our Chair, Alistair, for all his hard work and for steering us through the year.

Our local First Medical Responder, Tom Bailey, lives in Great Longstone and has written below, a summary of his valuable work. As we live so far from the hospital we may have our First Responder get to us before an ambulance can, so it is comforting to know we are not too disadvantaged living so far from Chesterfield.

Our emergencies have followed the usual pattern of mostly medical incidents but a fair amount have been trauma with a few road collisions, sporting and leisure injuries.

Several have been in Longstone, others in surrounding villages.

As some of you will have experienced the role of the MFR is not just to provide immediate care while waiting for an ambulance. Some patients may be assessed and referred to primary care, GP or out of hours services, minor injury units or to accident and emergency either under your own steam or by ambulance as required. Another function is to support ambulance crews and solo responders at incidents where extra hands are needed. The local team of 3 MFRs has been expanded recently to 4.

May I remind you to ensure your house names and numbers are clear and easily seen from the road as this will greatly speed up our response to you. If it is dark, put your front lights on, or the hazard lights on the car in your drive if it is safe and appropriate to do so. House names are hard to find so anything to help is greatly appreciated, as is informing our control room of any directions or landmarks to help identify where your property is.

A happy Easter to you all.

DATES FOR THE DIARY

Sunday April 5th – 2pm Village Hall
Cream Tea Day

Wednesday April 8th – 7.30pm Village Hall
Sheldon Parish Meeting AGM

Sunday April 26th – 10am Village Hall
Table Top Sale

Sheldon Jottings for March 2015

We hope the worst of the winter weather will be over this month – we did get better service with gritting and snow clearing during the late January/early February fall, enabling us to get to work eventually. Some of the birds seem to be looking forward to the better weather to come – two great tits in our garden are spending a lot of time together in and out of a nest box on the trunk of a tree. The male blackbirds are seriously fighting and the Sparrow Hawk has been doing his rounds of our gardens over the winter; a sight to behold for us but not so for all those smaller birds we have been feeding. We now have two woodpeckers who come to the feeders.

The Christmas festivities are now well past but we have been reminded that Sheldon decorated a tree for the Bakewell Tree Festival. It was decorated with farm animals, which of course was very fitting for our village.

The Belted Galloway cow given to Peter and Sarah as a wedding present gave birth on 21st January to a beautiful heifer calf – her last one was a bull calf. We look forward to seeing it in the fields. Lambs have been born at both Top Farm and Johnson Lane Farm heralding the approach of Spring.

Before the end of the month the village hall refurbishment will have taken another step forward with new curtains, a new notice board and a new Cream Teas sign. We are lucky to have such a facility with so much history attached to it. Built in 1878 to be the village school, the building was gifted to the village in 1959 by the then Duke of Devonshire and dedicated to his brother who died in the Second World War. Many thanks go to Lindsey who has born the brunt of the organisation for the refurbishment process and as ever to the Trustees and Pat, who stoutly continue to maintain the hall and its traditions.

The question of the defibrillator to be accessed in the village is now on-going and funding is being sought from different sources. It will probably be stored in a box on an external wall of the village hall; donations welcome!

We were delighted to hear that on Sunday 15th February beautiful baby Alice was christened in our lovely little church – a happy ceremony for the proud parents Elizabeth and Mark and a lovely occasion for all who attended.

The village received a special card, personally signed by the Duke of Devonshire with a lovely photograph of the late Dowager Duchess (Debo) on the front. It was sent in response to the village sending our condolences on her death late last year; you can see the card in the village hall.

We have been informed that there are people going around villages selling fish from a van. Do beware as they will ask you to spend a lot of money on a lot of dodgy fish. Phone the police on 101 if you are suspicious!

On Saturday and Sunday 21st and 22nd March the History Group will be holding their annual exhibition in the village hall. This is always an interesting event with photographs, artefacts and features reflecting the long and surprisingly varied history of our delightful little village. The exhibition always contains one or two surprises and entry is free, just come along for a browse, refreshments and a chat.

DATES FOR THE DIARY

Wednesday 18th March 7.30pm in the village hall
History Group Meeting

Saturday and Sunday 21st and 22nd March 10am to 4pm in the village hall
History Group Annual Exhibition

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.