Arrivals and a departure
We are pleased to welcome two new Committee members and very sad to lose Melanie Sockett, our Secretary for the last nine years.
Andrew Beeson moved to the Stamford area about 10 years ago from London where he was a Director of Building Consultancy at Colliers International. A member of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors and with a degree in Building Surveying from Liverpool University, Andrew now manages the family’s commercial and residential property development businesses alongside his wife and parents-in-law.
With a particular interest in historic buildings Andrew said “In 2015 we decided to relocate our of ce from a modern business park in Peterborough up to Stamford for a better working environment.
Beeson Wright Limited acquired some derelict barns on Bath Row and the completed Cobblestone Yard development was warmly received and shows what can be achieved with a sympathetic renovation of disused old outbuildings to bring them back into 21st century use.”
When not working, Andrew likes to tinker with his ever growing classic car collection, “it’s become a bit of an addiction rather than a hobby, but luckily my family also share my enthusiasm!”
Andrew was invited to join the Stamford Civic Society Committee in 2016 which he gladly accepted and looks forward to assisting in the preservation and enhancement of this fine town.
Paddy Jelen has lived in Lincolnshire since 1999 and moved to Stamford four years ago. After a career in the NHS as a Health Visitor she has now retired. Paddy’s interests include a love of architecture and she has collected botanical water colours since the mid-1970s.
She has travelled widely including 16 years in the USA – Boston, Texas and Princeton, NJ.
Paddy was a founder of DRAG (Deepings Road Action Group) in Market Deeping which was concerned with speed limits and traffic flow. Having been involved in the cleaning of The Albert Bridge she is looking forward to participating in future projects in Stamford.
Melanie Sockett with her husband Mike – also a Committee member – first moved to Stamford in the late 1970s. Her impression of the town, looking down High Street St Martin’s, was “this is a feast for the eyes”. She has always been interested in art and architecture, and especially the detailed depictions of domestic buildings in Renaissance paintings.
The Secretary’s job is to make things go smoothly – so smoothly that people do not realise that quite a bit of work is involved. She was initially surprised at how many things the Committee were tackling and how diverse her role was. One of the activities that she has enjoyed most has been the Society’s projects with local schools. Her background in teaching – mainly English Language and English for Communication – at Peterborough Regional College stood her in good stead.
How did she become a member of the Society in the first place? Chris Stanier, then a Committee member, encour- aged her and Mike to join. In those days you were asked to write to the Committee and explain why you wanted to become a member!
In looking towards the future, Melanie thinks that the Society’s main challenges are finding someone with the enthusiasm and determination to take on the role of Chairman when Gwyneth Gibbs stands down. She also thinks that it is difficult to co-opt enough people to carry out essential projects. She feels that it has been a privilege to work with people who are committed to doing things to protect and enhance the town.
As she moves to pastures new Melanie is not sitting back and relaxing. She will continue to work as a volunteer at Peterborough Museum and in St John’s Church garden, and is helping to transcribe a range of 17th century inventories. We will certainly miss her.
Why not join us as a Committee member?
The Committee meets once a month at the United Reformed Church rooms in Broad Street. Everyone brings a different range of knowledge and experience to the work of the Committee and there is no blueprint regarding a ‘typical’ member. What helps is if you are interested in a speci c aspect of the Society’s work. For instance you might be good at organising events, or publicity. We are always looking at ways of promoting the Society and knowledge of today’s social media would be really valuable.
If you are interested in joining us, contact Gwyneth Gibbs, at email@example.com.