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Delve into the past of Stamford, Rutland, Bourne and The Deepings with Mercury Memories

10 years ago

More than 100 people gathered at a public meeting to protest against plans for housing development on a greenfield site.

Robert Conboy organised the meeting after South Kesteven District Council picked a site between Tinwell Road and Empingham Road, Stamford to supply the majority of housing for the town for the next 15 years.

50 years ago: September 3, 1971 – Fancy dress competitors in the picture at Bourne and district Royal British Legion fete, held at Brodrick’s field in North Road, on Monday.
50 years ago: September 3, 1971 – Fancy dress competitors in the picture at Bourne and district Royal British Legion fete, held at Brodrick’s field in North Road, on Monday.

Commercial Estates Group wants to turn the 70-acre site into a 400-home estate, including about 140 affordable houses, a shop and a community centre.

The site was chosen over sites on the outskirts of Stamford at Newstead and on former brickworks land on Little Casterton Road.

Mr Conboy had previously formed the South West Approaches Protection Group to protest against the development.

25 years ago: August 30, 1996 – Craftsman Nick Bradley shows Sam Twiddy, 11, and other Escape ‘96 youngsters the intricacies of brick-making
25 years ago: August 30, 1996 – Craftsman Nick Bradley shows Sam Twiddy, 11, and other Escape ‘96 youngsters the intricacies of brick-making

The Empingham Road resident labelled the meeting a success and said attendees had been encouraged to e-mail every South Kesteven district councillor before the full council meeting on Thursday.

Changes to social care services could save money and give people more choices, according to a council.

Lincolnshire County Council could cut as many as 285 jobs as it looks to reduce the care services it provides directly.

The council is looking to accelerate the move towards a personalised budget scheme. Care grants would be given to users and they would buy services instead of the council providing care for them.

This means they could pay charities or private care providers instead of using council services.

The Government wants all adult social care users to be on personal budgets by April 2013.

Councillors will decide on Tuesday whether to consult people on pressing ahead with the move sooner in Lincolnshire.

The council currently bulk buys services, meaning it sometimes pays for services that people do not need or use.

A bowls club faces a bleak future unless new members come forward.

In the last few years newcomers to Belton Gardens Bowls Club in Stamford have been scarce and the club chairman Keith Rippin is appealing for more members to secure the future.

The club is based on the Recreation Ground at Stamford and currently has about 20 playing members.

But five years ago it had twice that number. Today it can only manage one league team.

Mr Rippin said: “We would love to have new members. The future will look bleak unless we can bring in new people.

“Our position is that a lot of our members are getting older and we have not had enough new members over the last few years.

“We shall be considering our future in the next couple of weeks as the playing season comes to an end.

“It’s a question of whether people want to get out and do something or if they just want to sit in front of the TV.”

Mr Rippin concedes that recruiting is difficult at the end of the playing season when there are no upcoming matches to entice people.

But he thinks bowls is an ideal activity for the whole family.

25 years ago

A picture of the mystery Panther was snapped by specialist wedding photographer Jim Harrison, of Oakham.

He was taken by surprise by the leggy feline as he drove through Langham near Oakham late on Thursday afternoon. He said: “I didn’t have time to check my shutter speed and I had a slow film already loaded in the camera. That – coupled with the poor light – is why it’s not the best and clearest picture in the world! But nonetheless it was not a domestic moggy. It was far too big to be that.

“I spotted it bounding along a field at the side of the Ashwell Road and just grabbed my camera, desperate to be the first to get a picture of the famous Rutland Panther!”

Lincolnshire risks becoming an economic and tourism backwater because of Government cuts, senior councillors have claimed.

The warnings have been made by Lincolnshire County Council following cuts to its trunk roads maintenance budget by the Highways Agency.

The effect, councillors say will be reduced standards and no improvements in the county’s transport

One of the victims of the cash cutbacks is the weight ban on Stamford town bridge.

Since 1995 the trunk road maintenance budget has been cut by £500,000.

The Highways Agency has promised work will continue to make sure roads are safe.

This view is not shared by Coun Paul Taylor, vice-chairman of the county council’s environment committee.

He said: “People and businesses will look elsewhere when they think of relocating and it will bring adverse effects on the county’s economy, tourism and investment.

The Highways Agency blames a “tight budget” for the cuts.

l Hundreds of people took trips down memory lane on the Delaine Bus Company’s fourth Vintage Running Day.

About 2,000 visitors braved the storm clouds to go on vintage day buses and look around a display of coaches and buses on Saturday.

Visitors were able to take a trip on one of the vintage vehicles from Bourne to Peterborough or between Bourne and Stamford.

And, as in previous years, there were open-top double decker tours of Bourne, plus vintage coach tours of the Rippingale route.

The oldest bus on the day was a 1938 Bristol from Keighley, West Yorkshire, while the winner of the longest distance trophy went to a bus from Basingstoke, Hampshire.

More than 50 vintage buses and coaches from all over the country took part in the day, now an established annual event for enthusiasts and people in the business.

Most of the vehicles are privately owned by preservation groups or individuals who have restored the coaches.

As well as a large display of vintage vehicles, there was also an assortment of transport sales stands.

A surprise visit was made by a 99-seater Volvo Olympian on transit to Hong Kong.

Managing director Anthony Delaine-Smith said: “I think some of the locals stayed away because of the weather, and some of the people on the open-top deck were rained upon, but it didn’t spoil the day. We had a lot of enthusiasts again this year.

“It went very well and was excellent. We would like to thank everyone who came and enjoyed the day. We hope to see them again next year.”

The fifth Vintage Running Day will be held on August 23 next year.

50 years ago

The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh will arrive at Burghley today to watch Princess Anne ride in the European Horse Trial Championships.

They will be staying at Burghley House as guests of the Marquess and Marchioness of Exeter and are due to leave on Sunday night.

The Queen and the Duke are both flying from Balmoral Castle to RAF Wittering today where they will be met by the Station Commander, Group Captain Alan Merriman.

A Station spokesman said: “There will be on official reception as it is purely a private visit. They will get straight into waiting cars and be driven to Burghley.”

The Duke is due to touch down at 12.15pm, but the Queen will not be arriving until 6.45 pm. She is expected to arrive at Burghley House at 7pm.

The Duke will probably watch the final part of the dressage section of the championship this afternoon.

The Queen and the Duke will see Princess Anne competing in the cross-country, speed and endurance test tomorrow and in the show jumping on Sunday.

Two members of Stamford Burial Joint Committee have called for a special meeting of the committee to discuss complaints about the town cemetery.

Last week the Mercury published two letters from townspeople protesting at vases being removed from graves and held until a £2 fee is paid.

The two members who have asked for the special meeting are both borough council representatives on the committee – Coun Mrs Winifred Smith and Coun Mark Stott.

Coun Stott said: “We are not due for another meeting of the committee for two months and I think this matter should be considered before then,

“In the last few days I have heard a number of complaints about this matter, and it is important there should be an early meeting to discuss them.”

Coun Mrs Smith commented: “The burial joint committee meets in public and I think it is vital that the public should hear the committee’s side of the case as soon as possible.”

A blaze which destroyed over 100 tons of baled paper at the Helpston paper mill of Towgood and Beckworth Ltd, on Saturday, may cost the firm £40,000 in damage.

Firemen took over an hour and used a dozen jets to put out the fire which swept through a baler building where the paper was standing.

They fought to stop it from spreading to the main building and a propane gas installation some 30 feet away from the flames.

They managed to control it, but not before the main doors to the factory building had been damaged by the blaze.

A tractor and trailer belonging to the firm were also damaged.

The main contract for the Empingham reservoir construction has been awarded to Gleeson Civil Engineering, it was announced on Wednesday.

The contract, worth £5,298,462, is for the building of the reservoir dam and associated works.

Gleesons are due to start on the site in the next two or three weeks. The Welland and Nene River Authority anticipate work will not be finished until the spring of 1975.

The decision on the contract was taken on

100 years ago

New Engineering Hours – The employees of Messrs. Blackstone and Co. have been on short time recently, half the men working one week and the other half the next week, but the firm have now arranged for all the employees to work alternate weeks.

Eye Cut Whilst Tennis Playing – Mr. F. Eustace Parker, son of Mr. and Mrs. F. K. Parker, of St. Mary’s-street, Stamford, was the victim of a serious mishap whilst engaged in a game of tennis on the Recreation Ground courts on Thursday evening week. He was wearing glasses and a ball struck him in the face, shattering his glasses. A portion of the broken glass entered his left eye, and cut the iris. He was attended by Dr. E. A. Hutton-Attenborough, and next morning journeyed to Leicester for a consultation with Dr. Ridley, subsequently entering the Leicester Royal Infirmary where, we are pleased to hear, he is making satisfactory progress. Dr. Ridley emphasised the advisability, when playing outdoor games, to wear glasses made of crystals, as these, he explained, would not splinter if broken.

Policemen Join The Benedicts – On Saturday the wedding took place at the Congregational church, Bourne, of P.c. Sydney George Greathead, son of Mr. and Mrs. S. Greathead, of Market-place, Bourne, and Miss Eva Florence Preston, of Cleethorpes. The officiating minister was the Rev. J. A. Halfpenny. Miss Lily Greathead, sister of the bridegroom, was bridesmaid, and the best man was Mr. Harry Greathead, brother of the bridegroom. The bride was given away by P.c. G. Tasker, of Bourne. Included in the gifts were presents from the members of the Lincolnshire Constabulary to the groom, who was well-known here in pre-war days as an entertainer. The wedding has also taken place at Bourne of P.c. Smith and Miss Almand, of Corby. P.c. Smith has been stationed for some time at Corby: he was formerly at Thurlby, and has now been transferred to Uffington. Mr. and Mrs. Smith were recipients of many useful presents.

Lifelong Service - After spending the whole of their lives since school-days with Messrs. Blackstone and Co., three valued employees of the firm relinquished their positions as foremen of different departments on Tuesday. The one with the longest service is Mr. Wm. Yates, who lives at 59, St. Leonard’s-street. He has been with the firm for 62 years, and has worked his way up to foremen of one of the experimental shops. It was 54 years ago when Mr. W. Walmsley, of 8, Vine-street, entered the firm’s employ. He left school when just over 13 years of age, and by hard work and strict attention to duty has risen to the position of foreman of the agricultural foundry. Mr. T. N. Smith, of 20, Conduit-road, commenced work with the firm 47 years’ ago, and for over 33 years he has occupied the position of foreman of the agricultural fitting department. It will be noticed that the services of the three employees together amount to 163 years’.

150 years ago

The report of Mr. Hawksley on the water supply for Stamford, quoted in last week’s Mercury, has been supplemented by an explanatory letter to the Town Clerk, which was read at the Council meeting on Tuesday. Neither the report nor the letter gave rise to any discussion in the hall, the Water Supply Committee having arrived at the conclusion that any hasty decision on a scheme which contemplates an outlay of at least £26,000 would be impolitic, and they therefore recommended that the consideration of the report be deferred. The subject, as might reasonably be expected, has given rise to much conversation in the borough, the dread of increased rates operating antagonistically upon the minds of some, and the desire for an abundant supply of pure water favourably influencing others.

There have been several cheap day-trips from Stamford to the sea-side and other places this week, and many persons have availed themselves of the opportunity to enjoy a day’s holiday. On Monday the Great Northern Company ran an excursion to Hunstanton for the accommodation of the Stamford Odd Fellows and St. George’s choir, and about 210 persons took tickets. On the same day the Midland Company ran a cheap train to Leicester, it being the Foresters’ fete in that town, but only six individuals were booked for it from Stamford. On Wednesday there was another excursion to Hunstanton, via the Midland railway, which took up 53 passengers at the Stamford station.

The weather having been favourable the harvest in this neighbourhood is for the most part secured in good condition, though the yield is said to vary considerably. A few of the wheat crops were heavy, but the bulk is reported to be rather below the average. We have heard of a field in the occupation of Mr. Jos. Pollard which has produced five quarters of wheat to the acre. Labour has been so scarce that an unusual price has been paid for mowing and reaping, and harvestmen who have been engaged to gather and bind after the reaping-machine have easily earned £2 a week.

At an auction sale by Messrs. Richardson at the George Hotel, Stamford, on Friday evening, five shares in the Easton Gas Company (limited) of £5 each were sold for £4 per share. Four shares of £50 each in the Stamford Gas Company were also offered for sale, but only one share was disposed of: it made £88, the reserve price. A dividend of £9 per cent, free of income tax, has been paid on these shares for the last three years.

Billingborough – A few weeks ago a boy, son of a labourer named John Robinson, while in the act of running after some sheep, unfortunately fell and broke one of the small bones of his right foot, and on Friday last another son of the same man, while holding a pony, was knocked down by the restive animal and sustained a fracture of the right shoulder. Both patients are progressing favourably.

One of the oldest inhabitants of Horbling, Mrs. Ann Waddington, has died at the ripe age of 93. She was well-known, and all her faculties remained clear to the last.

200 years ago

At a charter-hall held yesterday, Mr. John Davis was chosen an Alderman and nominated to serve the office of Mayor of this Corporation for the year ensuing. At the same hall, Mr. Charles Careret and Mr. Edward Drury (stationer) were elected Capital Burgesses.

On Monday the return match at cricket between the Stamford and Grantham clubs was played in Stamford meadows. Grantham first innings, 51, second, 27 – total 78. Stamford first innings, 47; second 63 – total 110.

On Monday last was committed to Lincoln Castle, (by the Rev. Wm. Waters,) John Rickitts, a Threekingham labourer, to take his trial at the next assizes upon a charge laid against him of setting fire to the premises of Mr. Henry Gilbert, of that place, in the night of Saturday the 18th instant. The commitment took place after two days’ diligent and close investigation by the Magistrate upon the spot.

Caution for the Lincolnshire Coast – High tides may be expected to take place about the 15th of September, and shortly after the full-moon in October.

On the night of Saturday the 18th instant, as Mr. Boss, landlord of the Oat Sheaf, in Heckington Fen, was returning home, in a cart with two horses, in company with his servant boy, from Boston, where they had been to deliver five quarters of wheat, and to fetch a quantity of grains, a cheese, and some barrels of small beer, they were attacked, about three miles and a half from the town, by a footpad who came from behind a shock of wheat in a field opposite to the very dangerous copse that overhangs the northern side of the road. This man, who had neither hat nor coat, hastily advanced with peculiar boldness, and immediately aimed a blow with his double fist at the boy, which be happily averted by bending down. On being asked what he wanted, be replied ‘Money.’ A desperate struggle soon after ensued between him and Mr. Boss, by whom he was almost subdued, when another man sprung from among the wheat sheaves, and instantly with the most dreadful threats, placed the muzzle of a gun at his victim’s breast. At length, overcome by two such powerful assailants, Mr. B. was forcibly robbed of his purse, which contained the sum of £14 10s. With this booty the villains escaped, although they were immediately pursued by the courageous landlord, on horseback, till he saw them join four other comrades, who would doubtless have rendered their companions assistance in the robbery, if their aid had been required. We regret to state they have not yet been heard of.

Proposed Turnpike-Road from Bourn to Spalding.

We, the undersigned, do hereby give Notice, that a Meeting will be held, at the Bull Inn in Bourn, on Monday the 10th day of September next, at Eleven o’clock in the forenoon, for the purpose of considering of the Expediency of forming a Turnpike-road by Gutheram-Cote from Bourne to Spalding; when the attendance of parties interested therein is requested.

Exeter, Eardley, W. A. Johnson, Maurice Johnson, D.D., George Pochin, P. D. Pauncefort Duncombe, Robert Holdich.

Edithweston with Wytchley Warren.

We, the undersigned, principal proprietors of Estates within the parish of Edithweston with Wytchley Warren, request gentlemen not to sport thereon; and all unqualified persons found trespassing will be prosecuted.

Richard Lucas, Robert Tomblin, Humphrey Orme.

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