From the Chairman
Welcome to the Spring Newsletter for this year 2020 - the first months of which have been somewhat turbulent! Our carefully planned 2020 Events programme suddenly finds itself confronted by a huge ‘sink-hole’ that has opened up in front of it – ‘Coronavirus’. Bearing in mind that a large proportion of our Members fall into the ‘High Risk’ category of the infection pandemic, your Committee has decided to postpone all our future events until further notice. You have received already notice of the postponement of the March event, the ‘Members Meeting’, and the April and May Events will also be postponed. Using our usual communication methods (email, post, website, facebook and twitter), we will certainly keep you in close touch with all further changes during these ongoing uncertain times.
Your Committee has implemented an appropriate ‘social distancing’ governance procedure for our Charity Registered Society in order that our functioning is not compromised whilst we patiently wait for relief of restrictions. We wish you well in your individual battles with this life changing situation.
Looking forward! your Committee is anxious to ensure that we move with the times and that Society membership continues to be seen as worthwhile. To this end, we recently mailed out to all Members a short survey asking for your views on how we could improve our way of operating, improve the content of our events programme and also asking for suggestions for any new activities you would like us to pursue. I am pleased to say we have had an excellent response, for which we are very grateful, and we will present the findings as soon as possible given the currently restricted communication environment.
The Millstream Improvement Project (MIP) is progressing well, enthusiastically supported by the MIP Group members and a wider range of volunteers. Significant improvements including channel clearance, increased pumped water flow and general ‘beautifying’ have been achieved and recently we have been advised that the bid for £8,800.00 from South Kesteven District Council Community Fund has been successful allowing further planned improvements to proceed.
The warm open-hearth fire at Browne’s Hospital provided a welcome backdrop on an unfriendly January evening as we listened intently to a truly fascinating talk by our good SCS friend Martin Lander. Martin, a fully qualified clock repairer who spent twelve years in his own business immediately before his retirement, covered the stories behind the totally illogical current time scales we use to measure a wide range of repeatable activities. With some humour he related the historical development of the need for time measurement ending with some pictures of public clocks in Stamford which we were asked to name. Martin was thanked heartily for a very entertaining and professionally presented talk,which generated a deal of discussion in the social period that followed on.
In February Members were presented with a very different location to the usual talks venue of Browne’s Hospital, they went back to school! – in the impressive surroundings of the Ancaster Studio of Stamford High School for girls. The Archivist of the Stamford Endowed Schools, James Buckman delivered a fascinating talk beginning with his initial task of putting in order a particularly untidy pile of old school documents, files and reports residing in a rather forlorn school storage space. He then went on to relate the history of the school explaining that it was the late nineteenth century when the formal education of girls was established (the boys having been catered for two hundred years before!). It was the end of World War Two, that the Education Act made it a legal requirement for every child to receive a basic education in ‘reading: writing: and arithmetic’. James covered in some detail the very rapid expansion of the Girls School through the ages with, during one period, a building acquisition or new build taking place on a yearly basis. Questions and contributions from the audience provided an informative and entertaining conclusion to the talk and the group then enjoyed refreshments in the reception area of the facility.
A further 85 planning applications were reviewed in 2019.