On May 1st, 1917, a special Parish Meeting was called to discuss a letter received, from Newark. Rural District Council suggesting that a "Rats and Sparrows Club" should be formed. At this period in the war it was felt the situation relative to food was such that measures should be taken against the depredations these pests carried out on the crops of grain.
The letter also suggested the following rewards should apply: -
1/-per doz. Ratstails.
3d per doz for heads of fully-fledged house sparrows.
2d per doz for unfledged.
1d per doz for house sparrows eggs.
As far as expenditure to meet these rewards was concerned this was to be obtained from persons interested (presumably this was the farming fraternity), voluntary sources, and parish funds.
It is evident from the minutes of the meeting that it was one thing to be patriotic and quite another to administer satisfactorily, the arrangements which would be needed.
The minutes go on to say "A long and desultory conversation was carried on as to whether the rewards be paid out of the funds of Parish Property - the amounts to be paid - as to who should do the work and on what terms of remuneration, but no one proposed any. definite, resolutions." This was followed by the Chairman saying that as there were only four ratepayers attending and none interested in corn growing, and that an hour had already been wasted, he was sick of the whole thing.
At this point it was proposed the meeting be adjourned for a week, and the Chairman then proposed an amendment that it be adjourned for 10 years. Neither proposal was seconded. The minutes end by the statement that the chairman left the Chair intimating that it was the last time he would be present in that capacity.
Extract from Focal Point. 1982.