©Kirton News 2023
The Editors Letter
Dear readers, I have to confess I'm not a great New Year fan. Last year is already past and the 'gloom mongers' are predicting a tough year ahead with the banks in trouble and politicians at the highest level showing an alarming lack of transparency and honesty.
On the other hand one cannot deny that British people have a much higher standard of living, are better fed (perhaps too well!) and well clothed.
We hear a lot about global warming and the environment. It seems that such warming is due to higher levels of carbon dioxide in the upper atmosphere. This is leading to rising sea levels and climate changes in the U.K.
Higher sea levels and a wetter climate are a particular concern locally. I recollect reading an article in a local newspaper written by a prominent member of the borough council implicitly saying that we are protected by the Black Sluice Drainage Board and have nothing to worry about. What utter bosh! I would pose two questions. Is that particular gentleman qualified in the drainage field of civil engineering and what, if anything has the Board done to improve the system in light of increased rainfall and higher sea levels?
What can be done about reducing carbon dioxide emissions? Don't even think about wind farms. To supply all our electricity needs by wind power you simply would never be out of sight of a wind turbine, they would be plastered all over the countryside. Coal fired power stations are the worst offenders although much can be done to improve the problem. Gas fired stations are more efficient but we have recently seen the price of gas going out of the window. The only solution is nuclear power which has virtually no carbon dioxide emission. Horror of horrors I hear some people say, but we have to 'bite the bullet'. One last rhetorical question; would you accept a nuclear power station on the Wash?
I'm not going to answer that but if you have strong feelings about the foregoing drop me a line; we would be happy to print responses. I hope you are not too depressed by my thoughts; I only wish to open minds.
One of my favourite January things is to watch the emerging bulbs; the snowdrops coming first.
Older people of the village might be heard talking of the 'The College'; some of them perhaps worked at the 'College Farm'. The place they mean was officially called Kirton Agricultural Institute and it was the headquarters of the Agricultural Department of Holland County Council. It was housed in the premises now occupied by the Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs.
The first building on the site in Willington Road was Kirton Grammar School, founded by Sir Thomas Middlecott in 1624; it was replaced in 1853 by the present building. The laboratory building to the right of it was added in 1905. The Grammar School closed in 1917; the County Council leased the property from the Middlecott Trust and prepared for its opening to agricultural students, the first of whom were admitted in 1924. The staff included a Principal (Captain J. Wallace), an Agricultural Adviser, Soil Chemist, Entomologist, Mycologist and Poultry Adviser. A 100 acre farm, also in Willington Road was bought from W. Dennis & Sons and an experimental station was later added to its title.
It was not a residential college; students either had to travel in daily or find lodgings in the village. Of the first batch of 13, eight travelled from home and five found lodgings. The courses dealt with commercial horticulture and intensive agriculture, including marketing, management, bookkeeping and maintenance of farm machinery. Some students on the one year courses had been granted scholarships from the Ministry of Agriculture.
Before the Second World War experiments on bulb propagation, notably on hyacinths led to the Institute becoming known nationally as an advisory centre for the bulb industry. Since the war the centre and the farm have been continuously under the control of a government department, chiefly as an agricultural advisory service.
In the 1950's the government added a large block of office buildings on what had been the Grammar School's playing field and at the farm they put up houses for the permanent staff. The long, narrow structure alongside Church Lane, locally known as the 'Rifle Range' was originally just that. The schoolÕs army cadets of World War 1 used it and later it became the headquarters of Kirton Scouts and Guides.
Blasts from the Past
I couldn't resist doing these two reprints from our forerunner 'The Church in Kirton'. The first 'A Portrait of Kirton' from January 1985 is by an unknown author. Perhaps some of our older readers could let me know the writer.
The second article from March 1987 regarding Kirton Town Hall was written by Harold Wander and it might almost have been written yesterday. We are blessed with a splendid facility in the Town Hall but it needs continual care and attention.
A Portrait of Kirton
Cattle were also subject to plague and in 1947, 572 beast were lost in the village, whilst losses in the Wapentake as a whole amounted to 6,628 animals. Not all was gloom however. Through the ages Kirton has been the home of several illustrious families.
Abutting the Willington Road was once a ruin thought to have been the seat of the great family of Meers. The families of Roos, Cleymonds and Littleburys were also allied to the Meers who had great possessions in Kirton. Sir John de Kirtketon held Tattershall Castle from 1334 to 1367 and this may explain the Tattershall arms quartered with Cromwell appearing on the gate of Orme Hall. This was situated on the old Roman Road and was for many years the sole evidence of former glory. Today the experimental farm stands on the site of Orme Hall.
Deemed druidical in origin, Kirton was once the site of dispossessed Britons. Each settlement devoted space to worship and burial and the Druidical Altar and sacrificial grove eventually yielded to the early churches of the Saxons. It may well be therefore that the present church stands on this age old worship site. The church with only a trace of its Norman building remaining would adorn any town but much of its magnificence was lost when as a result of neglect and decay it was restored and remodelled in 1804. The tower was moved to a different position and the church much reduced in size.
The present Bozon Hall stands on the site of a moated mansion which was the property of Thomas de Branstoun.
Kirton Town Hall
The magazine goes to press before the opening on the 28th February so we are unable to give a report but no doubt the local press will give full coverage. However we can take this opportunity of congratulating the Parish Council for their great enterprise in bringing this much loved building up to modern standards. It was built five years before the writer was born so I know what a great benefit it has been to the community over the years. But it is showing its age and looking very tatty thus presenting a problem to the council.
They have tackled the job in a thoughtful and realistic manner with the result that we again have a hall worthy of the village.
The ship set off from Sydney bound for London via the Suez Canal. A quick look at the map would show our route to be southward then west through the Bass Strait (between the state of Victoria and the island of Tasmania) into an enormous bay known as the Great Australian Bight into which the winds blow uninterrupted from Antarctica.
We ran into a hurricane. It was the first time I had seen really bad weather onboard but it was awe inspiring. The dark, menacing, waves were like mountains towering above the ship and the constant wind blown spray meant very restricted visibility. I recollect being told there was already one ship 'on the beach' but I never felt particularly nervous. Although very much a 'greenhorn' I was aware that our vessel was well built and for its size was very powerful in the engine department.
The accepted routine in really bad weather is to head into the oncoming wind direction so for two days we sailed due south in the hope that the storm would die out. It didn't and we suffered several misfortunes. The double apprentice's cabins were on the boat deck facing aft; well above the main deck of the vessel where the majority of the officers were situated. The dining saloon on the main deck faced forward and had at least four large windows protected in bad weather by storm shutters and a thick steel plate protection in front of the glass.
Due to the movement of the ship rolling and pitching one slept with ones feet and knees jammed on opposite sides of oneÕs bunk to prevent your own body moving excessively but I personally never had a problem sleeping except one night I heard a lot of noise in the early hours of the morning which sounded like water sloshing around. Being a sound sleeper it didn't bother me very much. The next morning I found the accommodation on the main deck knee deep in water.
The captain responded by turning the ship around (which in itself can be a dangerous manoeuvre in high seas) and we ran back towards the port of Geelong. We spent two days there getting things sorted out and had a workforce of joiners to rebuild the wooden structures under the wool bales after which we set out for London once again. The weather for the remainder of the voyage was uneventful but it taught me a very important lesson Ð never, ever, underestimate the power of the sea.
Life on board a good steam turbine cargo ship was fairly stress free for an engineer apprentice. The British officers consisted of Captain, four deck officers, one radio officer, two deck apprentices, Chief Engineer, seven engineers, two electricians and two engineer apprentices. The petty officers were Hong Kong Chinese and consisted of bosun, carpenter, and two engine fitters. The remaining crew were Indian and we had ratings for just about everything - even a ship's barber! In addition we carried a doctor who was working his passage to the UK but he had practically nothing to do. As you can imagine with so many Indian crew the cuisine was definitely of that ilk. If you were so inclined you could have curry for breakfast, lunch and dinner with chapattis for elevenses. We had around 100 people on board - a big change from today when large containerships, carrying five times our cargo volume at faster speeds typically have a crew of 25 or less.
Passing Lands End inbound you got the 'channels'. It was an expression for the excitement of going on leave. Having more than 50 ships my employers used another crew for the UK/continent voyage so the deep sea boys got off at the first UK port, London in our case.
The ship had a sweepstake on who would pay off with the least money. Officers paid their bar account to the ship and usually they would have an 'allotment' - a monthly sum deducted from their wages and paid into their loved ones' bank. On arrival in a UK port the local Shipping Master from the Marine Office would pay the officers before they left the vessel. This happened very publicly so everyone knew who got what. A Welsh 4th engineer paid off with 1'd (in old money). It was a good job you were given a rail warrant to get you home but some of his shipmates chipped in for taxi money.
After my shore leave I joined a motor cargo ship which was dirty and extremely noisy - quite a contrast with the steam turbine I had sailed on.
More about that next month.
Around the homes
Another year has gone by; time goes so quickly when you are getting older. We all had a very quiet nice Christmas.
Mrs Gilding and Mrs Mowbray are not very well but I think everyone else is fine. Eileen and Laura were away for Christmas but are back with us now. We wish Yvonne all the best for her birthday also Mrs Bevan.
We wish you all a Happy and Healthy New Year from the Chestnuts.
Kirton Kids Club
I really can't believe another year has gone by so quickly. But looking back over 2007 I realise that the club and children have packed in an enormous amount during the year.
The club is always full of very happy, lively children either doing their own 'thing' or enjoying chatting, playing or simply being with other children.
There is always plenty of activities for them to get involved in, lots of different play equipment and art. The older children from year five upwards can chill in their own room with play stations, TV's and music equipment if they wish.
Kirton Kids' Club will be celebrating its ninth birthday in January! I'm sure we will be able to fit a party in there somewhere. We are open for breakfast club sessions every morning term time from 7.30 am to school and every afternoon 3.20 to 5.45 pm. The children are escorted to and from school by club staff and helpers.
Breakfast club is £2.50 per child per session. After school club is £4.30 per child per session with a 10% reduction for siblings. The Club will be open the first week of the Easter holidays, May half term and four weeks of the summer holidays 2008 if you wish to mark this year's calendar.
If you are interested in any of the term time or holiday sessions please feel free to phone 722426 or pop along to the club itself situated next to the church in the middle of the village. We will be more than happy to show you around and answer your questions.
The Mother’s Union
Our meeting in February is on Wednesday the 13th at 7.15 pm in the Methodist Church Hall. This is entitled a 'Healthy Relationship' evening when Jean Bartle and her team will show us how to have fun with others and at the same time keep fit and healthy through simple exercise.
There is no age limit in having fun and keeping fit! This meeting takes place in National Marriage Week when we wish every blessing on our families and our relationships.
Letter to the Editor . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Care Hope Project India
Through your letter pages I wish to convey my thanks to the Christmas Charity Fair Kirton Parish Church on Saturday the 24th November, 2007. My sincere thanks to Father David Carney and parishioners who enabled us to raise £160 for the Care Home Project India; a charity that cares and supports the children and babies who through just being born are the innocent victims of HIV/Aids in India.
My thanks also to all the people who have kindly donated and supported this heart-rending cause throughout the year in many cases anonymously. You have enabled us to reach £22,500 since the charity began in 2000.
As Christmas time is for caring I thank you all once again. Your contribution is so worthwhile and is being wisely spent by the Claretian Fathers in India. I wish you all a very happy and prosperous New Year. Yours sincerely
P.S. To the couple who bought a disco light from me pleas contact me as I have the coloured disc you need.
Sutterton Parent & Toddler Group
In Sutterton in the village hall, the parent & toddler group are desperately looking for new families to join the small but very friendly playgroup. It runs every Monday from 9.30am until 11.00am, with tea and coffee available, with juice and biscuits for the children.
All are welcome, and no pre-booking required. It only costs £1 to cover the cost of the drinks, so is reasonably priced too! Hope to see you there.
Kirton Craft and Hobbies
We are hoping to see more new faces this year. We meet every Friday 1.00pm Ð 3.00pm at Kirton Town Hall. Please come along and share your hobbies and ideas with us, or maybe we can help you get started in a new craft. We are a friendly bunch; make some new friends. Just drop in or for more information phone Elsie 722230
We are a voluntary led Parent & Toddler Group 0-3 years who meet at the Kirton Youth Centre Fridays 10am -12pm. Relax and meet new people, get involved in messy play and sing silly songs and nursery rhymes. Admission £1.50 per adult, children are FREE.
Lisa Simpson, Tel 724029
It has been a very exciting time at playgroup. Each week we have welcomed in Ann from soundlinks who has been running a music workshop called 'first notes'. We have had a lovely time learning new songs and playing lots of noisy and unusual musical instruments, exploring the concepts of pitch and rhythm, pulse and tempo.
The workshop culminated in a little show and we invited in parents and carers to come and share the experience with us. It was thoroughly enjoyed by everyone and we may have discovered some stars of the future!
We also held a family disco to raise funds for playgroup. It took place at Graves Park and proved to be a great success! It was a great fun evening. There was a children's entertainer for the little ones and a disco that had young and old boogieing into the night. We also held a raffle and a charity auction with some lucky people going away with some good prizes. We would like to say a big thank you to everyone who came along and supported us and also to those generous people that donated both raffle prizes and auction lots. Thank you!
If you would like any information regarding playgroup or would like to be involved in any way, please contact Sue our playgroup manager on 07939 266154.
Lazy River by Enid Pearson
High tide, still water,
Evening lamps are glowing,
Doves are resting quietly
Reflections on the river.
Editor's note: The poem paints an atmospheric scene which you can almost feel
During November there have been 14 reports of Anti Social Behaviour. They are as follows:
During December there have been 11 reports of Anti Social Behaviour. They are as follows:
The village of Kirton suffered a mini crime wave in the beginning of November, when a number of burglaries took place; these offences occurred throughout the village. Several motor vehicles and garages were also broken into, where a large amount of property was stolen. Two persons have been arrested for these offences and enquiries are ongoing, a large amount of property has been recovered. If you have been a victim of one of these crimes, you should have been contacted by Boston C.I.D. to have your property identified and returned.
Your Community town hall has been subjected to more windows being smashed, however on 17/11/07 a juvenile from Sutterton was arrested and has been dealt with for this offence. This is your community, if you witness any criminal offences being committed then please inform us, failing this it can be reported on crime stoppers 0800 555 111.
Kirton Neighbourhood Panel met again in November, issues raised were:
The next meeting will be held on 13th February 2008. If any resident would like further information regarding Neighbourhood Panels or would like to become a member please let me know. You can contact your panel members via email at email@example.com
If anyone has any issues or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact me at: Kirton Police Station, Station Road on 01205 722002 or alternatively you can e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org
PCSO Adam Eden
25th November - Tilly-Mae Grace Hardy
10th November John Robert Butler
22nd November - Irene Tayles
magazine committee wish to say ‘Thank-you’ for the following
Anonymous - £30
Donations for the magazine may be taken into Fossitt & Thorne (The Green), enclosed in an envelope.