Stamford, Rutland, Bourne and the Deepings news from up to 200 years ago in Mercury Memories
We take a look at what was making the news up to 200 years ago.
Our Mercury Memories is produced thanks to the support of the Stamford Mercury Archive Trust.
10 years ago
July 26, 2013
A residents' parking scheme for Stamford could be finalised by the end of the year after positive talks between campaigners and councils.
People living in Stamford town centre have been fighting to get parking permits for residents since Lincolnshire County Council took over parking enforcement powers from police in December.
South Kesteven District Council's original plans for a five-zone permit scheme were dropped in March after a poor response to a public consultation.
But campaigners, led by Broad Street resident Steve Marsh, went to both councils with a new single zone scheme which appears to have been taken on board.
Mr Marsh said: “They came back to us to say they were working on one revised zone and were taking it through the council. The district council was going to try and approach the county council to see if they were happy with it.
“We should hear something by the end of September.”
Despite the storm on Tuesday evening, thousands of people throughout the area have been making the most of the recent bout of hot weather.
Tourist attractions have welcomed a boost in visitor numebrs as temperatures have peaked at 30C over the past three weeks.
People have been flocking to Burghley House, which has seen a 45 per cent increase in visitors compared to the same period last year.
Spokesman Jo Tinker said: “We are delighted that the sunshine has been so wonderful this month and that so many local families have been able to enjoy the weather at Burghley.”
People have also been taking the trip to Rutland Water this month. Visitor numbers are up by 30 per cent on this time last year.
And the tourist attraction is preparing for its four day film festival from Thursday.
Tony Entwistle, events and marketing manager for Anglian Water, which operates the reservoir, said: “Its great to see a long spell of sunny, hot weather.”
The diggers have moved in and work has finally begun on a £150,000 skatepark that campaigners spent five years raising money for.
Maverick Industries rolled on to the Recreation Ground in Stamford on Monday to start work on the long-awaited skatepark.
By Wednesday the old tarmac base had been ripped up and work was well underway.
And depending on the weather, the park could be finished by October.
The Stamford Skatepark Committee began raising money for a new concrete facility after the old wooden ramps were torn down because of safety concerns in 2008.
After thousands of hours of voluntary work the group managed to raise £150,000 and in March this year secured planning permission for the park.
Committee chairman Marc Stanier was delighted to see work begin.
He said: “We are all extremely excited to finally get going on this long-awaited project.
“It's been a long five years though and we've had to clear all manner of hurdles along the way so we won't relax until it is built and we have made a long-term success of the facility.
“The public's support and collective will to see this idea come to fruition has played a huge part and for that we are extremely grateful.”
The new park will be a sunked concrete bowl with a range of ramps and features for skateboarders, BMXers and scooter riders to enjoy.
The plans were submitted by Stamford Town Council, which owns the Rec. But the park will be managed by the skatepark committee once it is finished.
25 years ago
July 24, 1998
A flock of doves is being decimated by a ferocious sparrowhawk stalking part of Market Deeping.
Residents have seen the clinical killer swoop on at least four doves – and other birds have been attacked too.
Mo Lewis, of Towngate East, has seen the hawk in action several times. Her quiet cottage garden seems to be its favourite killing field and is now strewn with the feathers of its victims.
She said: “I first saw it four weeks ago. I was sitting in my conservatory when I saw the thing chewing a dove – just ripping it to pieces. It was quite an impressive sight as it tried to carry it away in its mouth.”
Since then the hawk has struck relentlessly. Mo said: “Once I noticed lots of feathers fluttering down in the garden.
“My partner said the doves were probably just mating, but he was only trying to reassure me.
“I get nervous when I see the birds feeding now, thinking the hawk will swoop on them at any time.”
Mo has four bird boxes in her garden, but her feathered friends now seem reluctant to visit.
Neighbour Bill Sumner (81) is also anxious for the remaining doves which inhabit a barn begin his home. Two were so tame they used to follow him around his garden, but recently the hawk attacked and killed one of them.
The loss has traumatised the bird's mate and it is now even frightened of Mr Sumner.
The Deepings is to have sports grounds to match the quality of its cricket and football sides following an agreement to improve facilities at Outgang Road.
The site is home to Market Deeping Cricket Club, Deeping Rangers Football Club and Deeping Tennis Club.
All of those are to benefit from a £245,000 redevelopment plan,
The Deeping Sports and Social Club began fund-raising for the scheme two-and-a-half years ago, but two bids for National Lottery cash were turned down.
But the club's plans are now back on track thanks to a £150,000 cash injection from South Kesteven District Council.
Neil Lowndes, chairman of the club's fund-raising committee, said: “We're delighted, absolutely delighted. It is the result of more than two year's effort, and I have to say it would not have gone through without the help and assistance of SKDC.
“This site is dilapidated – part of it is falling down. It's really not a nice place to be, especially when you consider we have the best cricket club in the area and some of the best football teams.”
The centrepiece of the redevelopment will be a new clubhouse to replace the existing pavilion – built in 1975 and only expected to last 10 years.
Work will begin in September if the go-ahead for the council's backing is given.
The judges of the Stamford in Bloom competition have announced its first ever winners following a hectic day touring the town.
The panel spent hours visiting 57 commerical entries in the town centre before boarding a people carrier to inspect a total of 13 private gardens.
This was the competition's first year and organisers are expecting it will go from strength to strength in future years.
This year's commerical winner was Oriental Rugs, of Stamford Walk, and the residential title was claimed by Pat Tibbert, of Holland Road.
50 years ago
July 27, 1973
Stamford's long-awaited new sewage works are now expected to cost nearly a million pounds – and local ratepayers will foot the bill.
Original estimates for the Uffington Road, Barnack, works were around the £500,000 mark.
Stamford's Town Clerk, Mr Harold Bedford, stressed on Wednesday it was not a straight leap in costs. The new works would be catering for 25,000 people instead of the previously planned 17,000.
Whitehall have given the borough council the go-ahead to ask for tenders for the job at a new estimated cost of £916,000.
Said Mr Bedford: “It is a lot of money for local ratepayers to pay. But it will be spread over a few years by a system of loans.”
Closing date for tenders will be September 11 and it is hoped work can start later in the autumn.
The present overloaded sewage system in the town has meant a ban on new building in the area.
Local authorities, councillors and their respective associations, have been caused heartache by explotations of improvement grants.
This is claimed by Mr Michael Silverwood, the public health inspector in his annual report to Bourne Urban Council.
“There is no doubt that a fundermental flaw has been created in the provision of the Housing Act 1969, and, in particular, the regualtions governing the conditions of grant, whereby there is no condition relating to the sale of improved property.
“Along with most other authorities, this council has had to tolerate the approval of grants on properties which have been sold within a matter of weeks of the completion of the grant aid work, and the resultant payment of grant aid.”
He said that, for sometime before 1969, a condition of grant aid was that the grant would be paid back, if a property was sold in fewer than three years after its completion.
Pensioner Alice Cook this week spoke of her “miraculous escape” when lightning ripped through an old village church and left a trail of damage.
She described how lighting seemed to streak within inches either side of her and how the flashes were followed by a crack “like a bomb.”
Spinster Miss Cook, of 9 Cawthorpe, was alone cleaning in the lonely countryside church at Kirkby Underwood when the thunderstorm broke around Friday tea time.
She said: “I was just dusting a ledge when these flashes of lightning seemed to come from the window a couple of feet away.
“Two streaks passed about three inches from my left side and there was another about the same distance away from my right. I just froze.
“Then immediately afterwards there was an absolutely deafening noise. It was like a bomb. I don't know if it was a thunderbolt or what.
“But I put my hands to my ears because it was so loud. Afterwards I waited a little while, and then went off to find the church's treasurer to tell him what happened.”
Miss Cook, who is in her sixties and who has cleaned the church for 21 years, said she never had time to feel frightened.
But she said: “It was a miraculous escape. I don't know why the lighning didn't hit me.”
Meanwhile Mrs A. Street, wife of Kirkby Underwood Vicar, the Rev Kenneth Street, says she and her husband are heartbroken about the damage from the lightning strike.
One of the pinnacles of the church was blown off completely. Another looks precariously balanced – although firemen say it is safe.
100 years ago
July 27, 1923
Blind Concert Party – An excellent concert was given in the Assembly-rooms, Stamford, on Friday evening by the Blind Musicians' concert party. The attendance, however, was extremely disappointing, less than 60 being present. The party, consisting of four vocalists, rendered a fine programme in admirable style, the blending of tones being very fine. Mr. Andrew Broome, the manager, said that the party formerly toured on behalf of St. Dunstan's, but now resorted to the concert platform as a means of livelihood.
Pedestrian Injured – A serious accident occurred in Scotgate, Stamford, on Friday afternoon, when a motor-car belonging to Mrs. Littleton, a Berkshire lady, struck and severely injured a man named John Mills, who resides at 1, Foundry-road. It appears that Mills was walking from North-street into Scotgate, with a companion, and stepped out of the way of a car driven down North-street by Mr. H. V. Blackstone, when the other car, which was proceeding down Scotgate, struck him and knocked him down. Mr. Blackstone conveyed the injured man to the Infirmary, where Dr. Marrison, house surgeon, found he was suffering from shock, crushing of the left lower ribs, and numerous severe lacerations. The injured man later developed severe bronchitis, but under the care of Dr. Marrison and the nursing staff, is making good progress towards recovery.
Missed Each Other – At the County Court in Stamford on Monday F. B. Grundy had a claim entered against William Scott Wilson, haulage contractor. When the case came before the Registrar plaintiff was absent, and it was accordingly struck out. Later he appeared and explained to the Judge that he had been out of town. He asked for the matter to be allowed to go on, but his Honour Judge Dobb pointed out that as defendant, who was present when the case came up, had left the court, plaintiff would have to re-enter his claim.
Vagrancy Costs – It was reported at the fortnightly meeting of the Board of Guardians on Thursday that it appeared from the statistics prepared by the Lincolnshire Joint Vagrancy that the Board would received £81 as the cost of the vagrants it had relieved, as against a contribution of £28.
A Depraved Boy – Deploring his depravity, the Magistrates, at a speical Children's Court, on Thursday, ordered a boy, charged with an indecent assault on a girl under 7 years of age, to be punished with four strokes with the birch rod, and bound the father over in £5 for his boy to be of good beaviour for six months.
Lowest In The County – At a meeting of the Secondary School Governors, on Monday, Mr. J. T. Swift was unanimously re-elected chairman. The statement of accounts to 31st Marsh showed that £216 had come from endowments, £1329 from school fees, £610 Government grant, and £508 from the Kesteven County Council. In reply to a question as to the cost per pupil it was stated that Bourne was amongst the lowest in the county. A letter was read from the Board of Education stating that the fees at present in force were to be continued till the end of the school year, 1924. It was stated that the income of the Charities was now such that a further £30 would be payable to the school for the current year.
150 years ago
July 25, 1873
At a vestry meeting held at St. Mary's church, Stamford, it was resolved to put in three new windows on the north side of the edifice; and a harvest festival is to be held on the 2d of October, the thanks-offerings at which will be applied to liquidating the expense of the windows.
The Stamford Water Supply Committee had a long conference with Mr. Sanderson on the evening of the 17th inst., and an agreement was arrived at on all points except one which the committee were instructed to press most earnestly – that of a constant supply. On the one side it was contended that the supply must be regulated by ball taps or meters; and on the other it was urged that there would be less waste by a constant supply than by a system of storing in cisterns. The final settlement of the question will be referred to the Council.
Proposed Sale of the Shambles – The following letter, addressed to the Town Clerk, in reply to the communiction from the Town Council, has been received from the office of Woods and Forests: - “Sir, - I am directed by Mr. Charles Gore to acknowledge the receipt of your letter of the 15th inst., and to inform you in reply that, in order to enable him to make a report to the Lords of the Treasury respecting the proposed sale of the Shambles in Stamford, it will be necessary for him to have an inspection and a valuation made of the property. He therefore requests that you will furnish him, as is usual in similar cases, with an undertaking on the part of the Corporation to pay the expenses which may be incurred by this department in the matter. (Signed) J. F. Redgrave.” A meeting of the Shambles Committee was called for Wednesday evening, but only three members attended and no business was transacted.
The ratepayers of Stamford will not have forgotten the air of importance which has been recently given to the subject of watering the streets; and they have no doubt been surprised to find that, after all the talk at a public meeting and at the Town Council, the streets have been during the sweltering weather of the last few days entirely unvisited by the water carts, which, by some order it seems impossible to account for, have been locked up. We presume the Highway Sub-committee must be held accountable for the order to discontinue the watering.
A false alarm of fire was raised on Saturday evening in Stamford, which induced a large number of people to assemble opposite the shop of Mr. W. Parker, at the corner of St. Mary's-street and St. Mary's-Hill, where it was said the fire had broken out. The outcry startled the occupiers of the neighbouring houses, who for a few minutes felt their premises might be in danger. It transpired that there had been a slight leakage in the gas pipe which ran under the lead which covered the shop window, and a light having been applied to it a slight ignition was produced. The leak was carelessly left to burn, and it set the woodwork smouldering until something like a flame broke forth. The alarm brought plenty of assistance, water was in copious supply, and in a very short time all danger of the fire extending was at an end.
200 years ago
July 25, 1823
A total eclipse of the moon which was to happen about two o'clock on Wednesday morning last, and which had excited much interest with those attached to such observations, was unfortunately invisible in this part of the kingdom, owing to a thick vapour which came on before 12 o'clock and completely covered the luminary. The next total eclipse of the moon will happen on the 14th November, 1826.
On Saturday last, at the quarter sessions for this borough, Samuel Johnson, a man stating himself to be a tailor, was convicted of an act of vagrancy accompanied with insolent and unwarrantable conduct at the house of Mr. Laxton, mercer and tailor, and was sentenced to be publicly whipped from Stamford town-hall to the bridge.
At Bedford town sessions on the 14th inst., William Duffey, late of Stamford, for stealing hooks and other articles from the shop of Mr. Webb, was sentenced to be transported for seven years. He was liberated about noon on the day he committed the robbery, from the house of correction in Bedford, where he had been confined for six months for stealing from a stall at Potton fair.
At the sessions for the borough of Boston, on Friday last, Thos. Hull and Thos. Leaf, two notorious young men of that place, were convicted of robbing the premises of their employer, Samuel Sanders Esq., and of other offences, and were severally sentenced to seven years' transportation.
At Boston general quarter sessions, for the division, which commenced on Tuesday last, Benjamin Booth, of Gosberton, indicted for stealing a linen shirt and a cotton handkerchief, the property of John Wade, of the parish of Surfleet; Thomas Jones, late of the parish of Wyberton, indicted for stealing a quantity of carpenter's tools, belonging the Mr. Burrell, of that parish; and Thomas Hardy, of Boston, indicted for stealing a wood bucket and a tin pot, belonging to Wm. Abrahams, of Frampton – were severally found guilty, and, in consequence of their being old offenders, sentenced to be transported for seven years. Several other prisoners were tried at the above sessions (which did not finish until Wednesday afternoon); an account of them will be given in our next.
The supply and sale at Crowland market on Thursday the 17th inst., were superior to any that have occurred since the commencement; and from the general spirit excited both buyers and sellers, there is little doubt the market will soon rise to the first importance and respectability.
A very heavy storm of thunder and hail fell on Wednesday afternoon at Uppingham.
A most melancholy occurrence took place at Edmondthorpe on the 9th inst. Susan Burback, the servant of Mrs. Lomas, of that place, was sitting by the fire in the evening, when she fell asleep, and a piece of coal unfortunately flew upon her clothes, which immediately took fire. The heat awoke her; and the poor terrified girl, in her distressing situation, ran into different parts of the house, endeavouring to extinguish the flames, and eventually in to the street, screaming violently: there her mother met her, and after some difficulty tore her clothes off her, but not before she was most shockingly burnt. She languished in great agony until the 11th inst. and then died. An inquest was held on the body before Thomas Clarke, Gent. coroner: verdict, accidental death.