History GroupTalk April 2012


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A Meeting of The Widecombe History Group (WHG) was held at The Church House, Widecombe on Wednesday 4th April 2012 at 7.30 p.m.
Charity No. 1144684
Apologies: Alan & Mary Goodall, Archie & Audrey Mortimore, Barbara Norrish, Patrick Garvey, Mavis Clipson, Derek Hext and Jenny Pascoe.
Mrs Sue Boustead was in the chair and 50 members and 7 visitors attended. We welcomed the new members to the meeting. We hope that they enjoyed their visit and will become regular supporters of the group.
We welcomed Paul Rendell who gave an interesting talk on Industrial Dartmoor.
The minutes of the March meeting were read and approved.
Arising:  Widecombe Fair 11th September 2012:   Peter & Aileen Carrett are prepared to plan the interior of the marquee. They are asking individuals to plan a theme for the exhibits, or individual ideas for displays. They have the interior dimensions so please do contact them soon with your thoughts so that planning is not left until the last minute.
The themes seem to be :- 
a. Past policing of the parish
b. Bees and bee keeping as a hobby or profession.
c. Tin mining
d. Bellever (pre-history) - the Bronze Age.
e. Census forms 1841 - 1911
f. Wood and its uses
g. Lifton Farm Shop’s W. Fair Model.
Sue Boustead offered to draw up a ‘Rota List’ for the stewards so that everyone can make good use of their day at the Fair with time off to look around. Members are asked to give any information they have about policing in Widecombe, names of past policemen, stories etc to Peter Rennells who is collating this for our Widecombe Fair exhibition, (a) above.  
History as it Happens:
It was with sadness that we record the death of Brian Harris. His parents built up the haulage business of Harris & Miners that he eventually took over and ran for many years as Brian Harris Transport, based at Widecombe & Bovey Tracey.
The Widecombe P. Ch. Council have allocated the South Transept of our Church for the use of Widecombe History Group to display items of historic interest which it is hoped visitors and locals alike will enjoy.  Rev. Geoffrey Fenton, our vicar announced that the Bishop of Exeter has added his SEAL to a document that now brings the Ecclesiastical Parishes of Postbridge and Huccaby into the Moorland Team Ministry. A copy will be added to our village Archives. The Benefice now consists of Ashburton, Widecombe, Leusdon, Bickington, Buckland, Holne, Huccaby, Postbridge. This will be led by the team Rector Rev. David Sherwood of Ashburton, with Team Vicars, Rev. Corynne Cooper (Holne) and Rev. Geoffrey Fenton (Widecombe). These two parishes, part of Lydford, have had close attachment to Widecombe for years, since Bishop Branscombe c1260 decreed that they could bring their dead to Widecombe for burial. It is understood that Princetown will be attached to Yelverton.   Ponsworthy Bridge has been repaired and all the coping stones have been replaced. 
Archives:  Richard Wells stated that our collection is continuing to grow. Terry French is collating photographs of Mel Tor Cart wheeling and the names of those depicted.
Digitising: This is continuing well and a document recently digitised refers to The Rugglestone Friendly Society, that was based at The Rugglestone Inn. About 25 copies of the associated rule books and notice to members membership cards were also deposited with The Parish Council in 1992. The Society's funds were for the 'Support of their sick and the burial of their dead'.  As there several copies of these would it be a good idea to give a copy of each to the Rugglestone to display?  It was felt that if this was done they should remain as part of the fixtures of the Inn.  The meeting agreed and the secretary will bring this to the Parish Council Meeting scheduled for Thursday 5th April to seek their approval.  N. B. The contents of The Parish Chest are in the Parish Council’s safe keeping, and WHG act as caretakers of the chest and are currently  digitising their contents so that they may ultimately be more accessible to the community.
Gift Aid: Sue Boustead brought to the notice of members the importance of signing ‘Gift Aid’ forms, if you are in a position to do so, so that WHG, now a charity, can claim ‘gift aid’ as a result of members donations. This helps the finances of our group substantially.
Members are requested to contact Sue if they are prepared and able to help with this.
Emails & Correspondence:   Answering these continues to be a considerable part of our secretary’s work load each month and in the past month we have had enquiries from around the world. Many are seeking information regarding people tracing family trees. He has been able to help some and to others he has suggested contacting organisations that specialise in doing this work professionally. His post as secretary is voluntary, more a ‘hobby’ and can only devote a limited amount of his time to pursuing other peoples queries. Thanks to other people who have assisted in answering some of these including Deborah & Ted Hannaford regarding events in the Natsworthy area.
AGM:  Formal notice that the Fifteenth AGM of WHG will be held at 7.30 p.m. on Wednesday 2nd May 2012.
This will take part before the regular monthly meeting scheduled for the same date. We shall have a talk by a representative from Greenway, the home of the late Agatha Christie, about the house and gardens and this will culminate in our visit there on Friday 25th May.  The coach will leave Widecombe at 9.00 a.m. to catch the ferry at Totnes at 10.30 a.m. arriving at Greenway at approximately 11.45 a.m. leaving there for Dartmouth at 2.45 p.m. where the coach will meet us at 5.30 p.m. for the journey home.
Heritage, Educational & Information Centre:  The trustees are continuing their efforts to set up a centre in the village. They are now exploring the possibility of using a small part of the downstairs room of The Church House. A meeting between the Church House Management Committee, The National Trust and ourselves is planned for Monday 30th April at 7.30 p.m. to explore the various options.  WHG will be represented by Roger Claxton and Anthony Beard.
Diary Dates:   Sunday 8th April, Easter Day there will be a service at Dunstone Methodist Chapel at 3.00 p.m. led by Rev. Edgar Daniel.  Wednesday 18th April a guided walk led by Paul Rendell around Powdermills at 6.00 p.m. Meet at Higher Cherrybrook Bridge Quarry SX635 770. A donation of £1 is requested.  Wednesday 2nd May at Leusdon Memorial Hall a coffee morning from 10 - 12 noon in aid of Rowcroft Hospice.  Wednesday 2nd May our AGM & monthly meeting at The Church House at 7.30 p.m.  Thursday 24th May a Local History Seminar will be held at Parke, Bovey Tracey from 9.30a.m. till 1.00 p.m. our secretary will chair the event.  Monday 11th June at 7 p.m. we shall give a guided walk around Widecombe to a group from Plymouth & District Archaeological Society
Fund raising for Jubilee Celebrations:  Diary Dates:   Rev. Fenton gave a résumé of the preparations in the parish for The Queen’s Jubilee Celebrations and fund raising events. There may well be a stained glass ‘roundel’ placed in the Church if funds permit. Celebrations will take place at Leusdon and Widecombe on Sunday 3rd June. On Monday 4th of June celebration will continue on Widecombe Green culminating in a beacon being lit at Top Tor and a firework display at about 10.00 p.m..  Thursday 5th April, ‘taster sessions’ for Pilates, Yoga, Zumba, Salsa. contact Judy 01364 621520  Friday 13th April a cinema night at the Church House, including ‘The King’s Speech’ (12A).  Sunday 15th April cinema night including ‘Up’. this is a U film.  Friday 20th April Jubilee Whist Drive in the Church House at 7.30 p.m.  Saturday 5th May, 50/60s Rock & Roll Night.  Sunday 6th May ‘Wimblecombe’, bike assault course, space hopper, boules and of course Tennis, details 01364 621218 and 621378.  Monday 28th May at 7.30 p.m. in The Church House, Widecombe, a talk by Rev Nicholas Parke on Mines and Canals in the Littlehempstead area. Admission £3 includes tea & biscuits.  Several other soup lunches etc are also planned. Contact Rose 01364 631238_.  Over £900 has so far been raised for funding food, music etc and £1000 promised towards a firework display. Ideally the more we can raise the more spectacular and memorable the day will be.
Outings:   Friday 25th May, trip to Greenway - details in item above.  Saturday 6th October Marcia Babington our programme secretary, is organising a trip the RNLI Centre at Poole, Dorset, she will produce leaflets on this at our June meeting.  Please put this date in your diaries! The cost will be about £30 which includes the coach, a visit to the RNLI sea survival centre, training pool, maintenance area and a video presentation of a ‘May Day’ call. The cost will include a light lunch before the tour, and tea, biscuits/cake after the tour. There will be a stop for coffee on route to the centre and a stop for a meal on the way home. Carvery at £8.15 or bar snacks according to personal choice. Details to follow!
AOB:  The collection of old agricultural implements currently being stored at Bagtor need re-housing.
DNPA are looking for someone or a group of people to volunteer their services as regards storage for some or all of these artefacts. Contact DNPA or Maurice on 01364 661269.   Members were made aware of several computer ‘Scams’ being attempted by ‘phone as well as emails.
The meeting closed at 10.10p.m.
 There followed an   illustrated talk on Industrial Dartmoor  by Paul Rendell

Please click here to access that talk


The information on this page was last modified on November 11 2014 16:12:21.


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