Focal Point - April 2008


FOCAL POINT               ISSUE No. 329


 Ed's Comments

        APRIL  2008        

Easter has been and gone! Wasn't it early this year and waking up to a ‘winter wonderland of snow'! Still it looked nice though didn't it?

A reminder that it is St. George's day on the 23rd . I have just returned from holiday and whilst sitting on a very small island in the Indian Ocean I watched the residents of Chicago on TV turning their river green to celebrate last months St Patrick's day!


As a result I thought I might just have a look on the internet to see what London had to offer on the 23rd. Nothing quite as spectacular as Chicago unfortunately.There was a food fayre in Trafalgar square with the ‘world famous' Borough Market. (I had never heard of it! Although I feel that I should have done). What do you do if you have never heard of something? Correct! You look on the internet.

Apparently the ‘Market' recently celebrated 250 years trading on its current site! - Near London Bridge station.

I did like the suggestion in their History section that the Market existed in AD 43 when the Roman legions arrived starving of hunger. They were so impressed with the amount of food available that they stayed and built the first London Bridge across the Thames at that point!


I also had a look at the web page of The Royal Society of St George to see what they were doing this month. Not a lot was evident.

I was fascinated by one of the membership criteria though:-


 b) are born in England or wherever born being English men or English women or children or remoter issue of the same;

‘Remoter issue of the same'!!!!!!! The mind boggles.


Cliff Newbold

Closing date for the May issue is 21st April.


Winthorpe Parish Council News.

New Village Burial Ground.

Just over a year ago the Parish Council were advised that the Church burial ground was almost full. It was estimated at that time that there were perhaps only four or five more spaces.

It is a statutory duty of the Parish Council to provide ground for burial. We therefore entered into discussions with the District Council and with the help and support of our local District Councillor, a piece of land, surplus to requirements, was identified as ideal by both the Parish Council and members of the Parochial Church Council.

The Parish Council has agreed to go ahead and purchase this piece of land, which is situated at the end of Hargon Lane, on the edge of the village.

The various processes involved in converting land for burial purposes are quite convoluted and time consuming and it will therefore be some time before this land can be used.

It is proposed to restrict burials to local residents, former local residents, or those born in the village.

Once the land has been acquired, the Parish Council will then have to put in a Planning Application to the District Council with a plan of the proposed layout of the ground. Obviously, with possibly around only two or three burials a year, it will take a great many years before this site is full. So will we will be looking at landscaping the area properly and possibly setting a few flowering shrubs and similar along with a woodland walk (winding through the adjoining tree screen 7), with one or two seats, and generally making the area as attractive and pleasant as possible.

Meanwhile we would be very pleased to hear from anyone with constructive and realistic suggestions to make on how we might achieve this. In particular, anyone with landscaping abilities who would be prepared to help or advise the Parish Council, would be most welcome.

Vi11age Priest Stone and Cross.

The District Council have now approved the plans to rebuild the plinth which supports the remains of the village priest stone and later village cross - our the last remaining link with medieval Winthorpe!

The present brick plinth (built we estimate around the 1860's) is crumbling and badly in need of repair. For those unaware of where this stone is situated, it is on Holme Lane, on the grassed area in front of the Alms Houses.

The new plinth will be in stone and sited just a little to the left, away from the tree. Once completed it is also proposed to fix a suitable plaque to the plinth with brief details of the history of the stone/cross etc.

Winthorpe Parish Property Trust.

For some time now the Government have been considering changes to the structure of local government, including the "merging" of some of the smaller Parish Councils into larger more "economic" units. For example Winthorpe-with-Langford Parish Council could possibly be merged with say Collingham, Coddington, Home and Barnby-in-the-Willows?

Nothing has yet of course been announced or made public, but these proposals are still on the table. If and when this happens then the new enlarged council would take over any assets which, in our case, could be some land originally left to or acquired by the Parish Council, two fields of which are currently on lease to the Cricket Club and Community Centre. Obviously we would not like to see this happen.

We have therefore taken the first steps to avoid this. Fortuitously many years ago the Parish lands were put into a special Trust - Winthorpe Parish Property Trust - of which all Parish Councillors are automatically Trustees. The Trust is a properly registered with the Charity Commission, with its own articles of government etc.

Whilst we are not at the moment proposing to make any maj or structural changes to the Trust itself the Parish Council are proposing to make a couple of relatively minor changes in anticipation - if nothing happens and the government do not pursue these ideas, then no harm will have been done!

The first is to distance the Property Trust from the Parish Council a little by changing the name to the "Winthorpe Village Trust" and the second will be to enlarge, at a later date, the Board of Trustees slightly, by inviting up to two local residents to become Trustees along with the Parish Councillors.

Not many Parish Councils are in the position of Winthorpe and unless they act early, will not be able to protect local parish assets such as this for the benefit of local people!

Next Meeting.

The next meeting of the of the Parish Council will be on Thursday the

17th  April  at 7-30p.m. in the Village Hall.

Steve Jackson, Chairman






The next Lunch will be at 12.30pm on Monday, 7th April at the Community Centre. The menu will be:


Baked Ham with Pineapple


Roast Salmon with Tomatoes and Mozzarella Cheese


New Potatoes, Cauliflower and Beans


Sherry Trifle


Tickets at £6.00 (including a glass of wine) will be available from the P.O. thanks to Jo & Martin.



Recently we have had a caravan rally and the Robin Hood Theatre at the Centre. As a result there has been more traffic than usual. We regret any inconvenience this may have caused. We do ask drivers to drive slowly.

The Centre was built for the benefit of the residents of Winthorpe, Langford and Holme and is well used by them. However, without the income from outside bookings it would not be economically viable. We will continue to see that there is as little bother as possible.



Our AGM will be held at 7.30pm on Monday, 21st. April at the Community Centre. Please come along to hear what has happened in the last twelve months and to make any suggestions about the operation of the Centre. New ideas are always welcome. There are vacancies for two Trustees. If anyone is interested in finding out what this involves please contact me or Peter Foden.


Frances Kellly




Tuesday, 8th April -

 Morning Coffee in the Village Hall; 10.30am.


Wednesday, 23rd April - Outing to Hardwick Hall.


The coach will leave the Green at 9.30am and pick up at the Post Office. There will be a coffee stop at the Designer Outlet (formerly Macarthur Glen) before arriving at Hardwick Hall at approximately midday.

We hope to arrive back in Winthorpe about 5.00pm.

The cost will be £9 for National Trust members and £16 for non-NT members. We have a few spare seats on the coach. If anyone is interested please contact me, telephone 704241, as soon as possible.


Jean Foden.



7.30 Friday 18 April

Winthorpe Community Centre

Please meet on court, to inspect the condition of the courts,

prior to the AGM.

Meeting to be held in the meeting room of the Community Centre.

All welcome.

Maureen Smith - 01636 701205

Winthorpe Tennis Club Secretary



Your sunflower seeds will have now germinated and could have two pairs of leaves. They take about seven days to germinate. How many days did it take your seeds to germinate?

Using a plastic tie, loosely fasten your plants to a small split cane. If the plants are on a window sill they will bend towards the window. To keep them straight, half-turn the pots every day.

To prevent giving the plants a shock treatment, going from a warm house into a cold garden, they will require ‘hardening off'. To do this, when they are 15cm high, put them outside for two days against the wall of the house.     

Prepare a sunny spot in the garden for your sunflowers by digging in some compost. This will hold moisture and is beneficial to the plants. At the end of April plant out your sunflowers into the garden.

Try and plant some in your front garden. This will make passers-by smile when they see those giant yellow faces.


Do not forget to put in a tall stake to support each plant.




  • That Russia grows the most sunflowers and it has the sunflower as its National flower.


  • That the state of Kansas in the USA has the sunflower as its State flower.


Pat Finn.


Garden Club                                        

Judy Harry surprised many of her audience with the range of plants designated as herbs.  Some idea of the scope could be gleaned from her definition : plants useful to Mankind  for culinary, medicinal or economic reasons. 


Many are grown in our gardens for their flowers or foliage without necessarily appreciating their other qualities.  Over the centuries some have been used in cures, where, for example, part of the plant resembles the affected area of the human body in its shape or colour.  This had some success.  More recently there has been great interest in yew in creating cancer drugs and with sutherlandia in combating AIDS.  Myrtle has long been known as an astringent, hops for their soporific effect and hawthorn fruits in controlling blood pressure. 


There are places available on our outing to Bressingham on 18th June.  Anyone interested should contact Pat Nelson on 704712.


Our next meeting is the AGM and plant sale on 16th April.

Ian Wilson





Mrs. Sylvia Lloyd welcomed members to the Annual General meeting. There were quite a number of apologies for absence.

The beginning of the evening was taken up by the normal business meeting, where correspondence was read, including an invitation from Besthorpe Institute to their Birthday party; two members agreed to attend.

There were one or two suggestions for possible outings.

Mrs Brenda Tinsley had County House raffle tickets to sell; these will be drawn at the Spring Council meeting in Nottingham.

‘Flora Activa' margarine samples were handed out.

Mrs Margaret Hewitt, who had accumulated the most points throughout the year for the competitions, was duly presented with the Competition Cup and a beautiful plant by the President. Margaret said she had won the cup five times now!

Then it was time for the AGM:-

The Secretary gave a report of the years activities and speakers that had appeared at our meetings. Other events had also been attended by members. The Village Festival,  the December Carol Service, a summer walk and various workshops for crafts.

The President gave grateful thanks to all committee members for their help, both with the jobs they had taken on and also with extra tasks. Two members of the committee had decided to stand down this year, Mrs. Isobel Chipperfield and Mrs. June Taylor, both were long standing members and will be missed. There are however two new members who have agreed to take their places, namely, Mrs. Sheila Palmer and Mrs. Vivienne Clarkson. We welcome them and wish them well.


Then came selection of a President; several members names were put forward and they were all asked if they were willing to stand, only one brave soul agreed to do so; Mrs. Sylvia Lloyd, who once again is our elected President.

The meeting ended with tea and biscuits and friendly chat.


Our next meeting is on April 10th at 7.30 p.m. in the Village Hall and is our Birthday Party. Members are asked to bring a plate, dish, knife, fork and spoon and a raffle prize,

At the Birthday Party there will be tickets for sale at £2-50 each for the Fleet Group meeting, which is at The Memorial Hall Collingham on Monday

May 19th at 7.15pm. prompt.

As we are responsible for the raffle at this meeting, Mrs Tinsley would like some help with selling the tickets on the night. Please let her know if you are willing to help.


Daphne Marshall.


I have beer quite overwhelmed by the tide of condolence that engulfed The Lodge upon the death of Kathleen. We first met fifty years ago and were married for forty three of them, but not even that  prepared me for the many expressions of love and affection for her which I have received.

 My grateful thanks to all our friends and fellow villagers for their thoughts and prayers for Kate, myself and her sister Anne.

I count myself not so much stricken by her departure, but so blessed by the privilege of having been married to her.

My grateful thanks to the Rev David Milner for devising and conducting a joyous service, which everyone tells me truly reflected the love and happiness which so characterized Kate. My grateful thanks too for the many generous donations which the Children Society tell me they received in her memory.


Malcolm  Shelmerdine




     It is a real privilege to be writing this contribution as the new head teacher of Winthorpe Primary School.


For those who have not already met me, my name is Jamie Macintyre and I have taught at the school for nearly 5 years now. I have been lucky enough to have met some wonderful people from in and around the village during my time at the school and in my role as opening batsman for Winthorpe Cricket Club.


A school should be an integral part of any community; you only need to look at what is happening at Besthorpe to realise how lucky Winthorpe is to have such a successful and popular school.


We are very fortunate at the school to receive some wonderful support from the village. Mr Pat Finn runs a brilliant annual sunflower competition and regularly visits classes to talk about the history of the village. We receive help from Mrs Sylvia Lloyd with infant music lessons, from Mrs Ruth Myatt with junior readers and from Mrs Janet Kneen with junior maths. I am always looking for volunteers to help in school, if you could spare some time I would love to hear from you.


Over the next half term our classes will be learning about:-

  • Class 1- The Garden Centre
  • Class 2- Winthorpe Past and Present
  • Class 3- Victorian Children.
  • Class 4- Japan and the Far East.


Finally, I would like to say what an honour it is to work with such fantastic staff, governors, parents and children; I am incredibly excited about the future for Winthorpe Primary and look forward to keeping you updated with our achievements over the coming months and years.


         Jamie Macintyre, Head teacher

        (01636) 680060



The expanded Festival Committee has started detailed planning of this year's Festival. As agreed at the Public Meeting last September there will be no Open Gardens but the Gala Day will take place on:-

Saturday, 12th July.

The hope this year is to have a greater involvement of children (and their parents) and we are working on ideas for children's sports and a fancy dress parade. Parents will be invited to take part in both and there will be a Tug-of-War competition for teams representing various groups in the village.


We will have some of the now traditional activities and also some new ones. Keith Lloyd has already published his ideas and requests for the "Women at Work" exhibition. Nearer the time there will be a public meeting for organization representatives and others to offer their ideas for stalls, games etc. The sponsored charity this year is Macmillan Cancer Care and we hope to raise a good sum for that in addition to the money made by the various organizations for their own fundraising needs.


We will keep you informed as the plans progress but please keep Saturday, 12th. July clear in your diaries so you do not miss what we hope will be a very enjoyable event.

Alec Stewart

Chairman , Organizing Committee


More on the Gilstrap Family of Winthorpe House


After reading the article about Miss Josephine Gilstrap and her sister in last month's Focal Point, I thought it would be interesting to do a little more research into Lady Manners and her mysterious husband.


Josephine Elizabeth Gilstrap and her younger sister Anna Sophia were born in Newark in 1859 and 1862 respectively. Whilst Josephine remained a spinster and a companion to her widowed mother Jane Catherine Gilstrap (nèe Fothergill), her sister was busy becoming a member of the aristocracy.


In London, 1884, Anna Sophia Gilstrap married George Espec John Manners of Fornham Park, Suffolk, the son of George John Manners and Adeliza Matilda Fitzalan-Howard. He was the grandson of John Henry Manners and Lady Elizabeth Howard, 5th Duke and Duchess of Rutland, and of Henry Charles Howard and Charlotte Sophia Levenson-Gower, 13th Duke and Duchess of Norfolk. The royal connections of the Dukes of Rutland and Norfolk are many and interesting, and I shall resist the temptation to go into them here!


As a little aside though, George's first middle name was a nod to Walter Espec, possibly the earliest owner of Helmsley Castle in Yorkshire, and a supporter of King Henry I and King Stephen. On Espec's death in 1154, the castle passed to his brother-in-law Peter de Roos, in whose family the castle remained almost continuously until the 16th century. In 1508, Sir George Manners of Etal, Northumberland, a nephew of the de Roos family, inherited the castle, and it stayed in the Manners family, the Dukes of Rutland, until the Civil War.


Returning to the 19th century, where, in 1891, George and Anna Manners were living in Chelsea, London. At the time, George was the private secretary of a cabinet minister, but by 1901 he was a magistrate and living at his family seat, Fornham Park, still with his wife Anna. They had no children, and the rumour that they may have led separate lives seems quite likely, given that Fornham must have been a large house, staffed by 13 servants.


George Espec John Manners died in Woodbridge, Suffolk in 1939, possibly at Little Haddon Hall, by which time Anna had been living at Winthorpe House with her sister Josephine for many years. Anna Sophia Manners died in 1940, and is buried next to Josephine in Winthorpe churchyard. Their gravestones and that of their mother can be found to the north of the church, not far from the vestry door.


Christine Hasman


We have had another month when we have had to say ‘Good - Bye to two of our friends both being part of the village for some years. Before Dennis Bowler's failing health, he and his late wife Marjorie helped to organise fund raising events for the church, particularly during the restoration of the church roof 1979-80.  Being in the chocolate business he was well known for Easter Eggs and chocolate Father Christmas's. He has continued to support the church over the years.


Our second friend Mrs Muriel Silby was a marvellous resilient lady who would have been 100 this year.

She played an important part in David's ‘Jolly' at Christmas last year, entertaining us with well known songs which we all enjoyed singing. For both of them we are very thankful.


Unfortunately, the village choir disbanded leaving some funds, which the committee divided and gave to other village organisations. The Church is very grateful for the gift of £82.75, which has been used towards new altar linen, including a white altar frontal, which is to be made by Mrs Jean Lauder of Collingham. This gift is much appreciated.

We hope to raise the remaining money at a coffee morning after Easter - Date to be arranged. --- Watch this space.!!


Tickets for our light musical evening on Friday April 25th given by the ‘Collingham Singers' are now available as advertised in March Focal Point and on Posters around the village. The money raised is towards the pointing of the exterior brickwork of the church, which is crumbling badly and for this we may have to apply once again for a grant from the Historic Churches Trust. We are more likely to be successful in obtaining funding if there is good support from the village for the sponsored ‘Ride & Stride' around the participating churches in the area. We are all very aware of the importance of exercise so I look forward to you contacting me for your sponsorship forms !! 702104 before 20th April 2008. Thanking you in anticipation.


I would like to say a personal ‘Thank You' to Mr Gerry Platts who helped me out of a hole by re-fixing the gates following the resurfacing of the graveyard path. He also cleared the guttering at the back of the church and re-fixed some tiles on the north side of the church which had been dislodged by the strong winds.

On Friday 18th April at 7pm in the Winthorpe Village Hall there will be the Vestry and Annual General Meeting of the Parochial Church Council.

This is a public meeting and all will be welcome.

Those on the Church Electoral Roll are eligible to vote.

The Vestry Meeting elects the churchwarden(s) and this is followed by the P.C.C. meeting for ‘other business'. There are now two vacancies on the Parochial Church Council which we would like to fill, so if there is anyone interested and would like more information please contact the secretary Ann Stone 702104 . New faces and ideas are always welcome.


Church Bells:-


They will ring for practices on Thursday evenings from 7.30pm until 9pm and possibly for the following:-

April 13th - for 10.15am Holy Communion

April 19th - Special practice 7.30pm - 9pm.

April 20th  - for 10.15am Family Service

April 27th  -  for 6 pm  Evensong.


From the Resisters.....

Holy Baptism:-  17/2/08 -  Harrison Frank Faulkner.


RIP. 4/3/08 -  James Morley Randall

11/3/08 - Dennis Charles Bowler


Brass cleaning

Mr & Mrs Dennis Taylor.


We send our good wishes to everyone in the village and especially to those who are unwell at this present time. If they would like a visit from the Revd David Milner they can contact him on 892682 or telephone Ann on 702104


Alan & Ann Stone

Up-to-date notices of our church services and those of the other church services in the Benefice are displayed in the Post Office.


Dear All,


The late Roy Orbison sang plaintively "It's over, it's over, and it's over!  Easter and the brief school holiday, is over and it's back to a more normal routine. 

The day of resurrection accomplished, the church moves on its progress to Ascension and onward to Pentecost.


Throughout our group of churches along the East Trent we are, one by one, holding Annual General Meetings in each church.

A point for reflection, considering the previous years work, the state of our finances, buildings and church life generally. 

Our church council has worked hard throughout the past year.   Churchwarden Alan Stone, through his regular article, has kept you all up to date with the repairs and improvements made during the past year.  The most recent is the tarmacing of the church path approved at a recent special meeting of the PCC.

Julie Shuckburgh has served on the PCC but is standing down this year. Thank you for your support in this way.  We have also welcomed Joan Lord who with Nan Jackson is providing excellent support looking after the finances.  The chart and graphs presented at a recent meeting were greatly appreciated. All the PCC members provide valuable input to our wellbeing and development.  We are always happy to welcome new members and if you feel it is something that might interest you and you would like to know more I would be delighted to hear from you.

Alan Stone continues to be our only Churchwarden, it is usual to have two. It is an interesting task, if you feel it is a role that you could take on, or you would like to know more about, again I would be very happy to talk to you.

Thank you all for your generosity of spirit, for your time and commitment.


The past year was busy with many highlights:-

Harvest, Remembrance Sunday, A Christmas Sing-along at the Village Community Centre and a first outing for the East Trent Churches choir, within its number, four members from Winthorpe.  The choir sang at the packed Carol Service at Christmas.  We look forward to seeing them from time to time throughout the coming year. 

On Palm Sunday we made a procession around our church with nearly all the congregation taking part. We heard the Passion Narrative presented with excellent  support from Margaret Hewitt and Nick and Peter Roach.

Last September three of our members were confirmed at Southwell Minster. We are planning to be at the service again this September. There will be 5 preparation sessions at the Rectory in May/June. If you would like to join the group, or would like more information, please contact me.


The PCCs from our 8 churches have met together during the year.  Getting 60 or so people under one roof is quite a challenge and I have in consequence been very thankful to Air Commodore Stevenson who has generously welcomed us into his home on such occasions.  The business of developing our shared church life and maintaining our buildings is very demanding.  I am thankful for everyone who contributes in any way.

Last year a number of short courses were held at the Rectory aimed at encouraging people to explore faith and to think creatively about different aspects of the Bible and centrally the gospel story. Generally they were well received, enabling those attending to develop their own thinking and learning from one another. There will be further opportunities to meet this year. 

Importantly The East Trent Group of Churches operates a Prayer Chain.  This is a group of people called from across the group who privately and discreetly make a commitment to pray, on request for people in special need. The spiritual wellbeing of our church will always be mirrored by the quality of its prayer.     If you would like to know more about this important ministry please contact me at the Rectory.  Prayer is at the heart of all Christian ministries. 


Finally; I come to Winthorpe regularly and if you know of anyone who might want a visit from me please let me know via the Rectory or any church member.  I do not have second sight so you need to let me know!  


In Christian Love  



All Saints Church Winthorpe - Church Bells

Dear Friends,

No! I m not after more money, I'm pleased to be able to say that the Bell Project we started in the year 2002 is now totally completed.

Hayward Mills Bells have now finished the last phase in the project -weatherproofing the belfry.

Incidentally, I'm advised that the photo of the belfry in the Newark advertiser was taken by a young bell ringer - John Higgins. Well done John


I must say I was also very pleased to see the Newark Advertisers correction this week. In their report last week they gave the impression that ‘HISTORIC CHURCHES' had funded the whole £5000, when in fact, they gave a very welcome £1100. Over the whole project ‘Historic Churches' have been very generous, for which we are most grateful. But so has everyone else who supported us; Villagers, friends, all of the various trades' people and the Church council, plus of course the Focal Point which  has so faithfully reported on our progress.

At last its complete, thank you one and all.


Faithfully yours


K. J. Lloyd


                        SERVICES IN APRIL

              Sunday 6th Easter 3

                                                NO SERVICE IN WINTHORPE

                        9am                  Holy Communion, Holme.


            Sunday 13th Easter 4

            10.15am                       Holy Communion, Winthorpe.

            6pm                             Evensong, Holme.


            Thursday 17th            

            10am                            Holy Communion, Winthorpe.


            Sunday 20th Easter 5

            9am                              Holy Communion, Langford.

            10.15am                       Family Service, Winthorpe.


            Sunday 27th Easter 6

            6pm                             Evensong, Winthorpe.







                        APRIL                                     MAY

            11th Mrs Foden, Mrs Hill          9th Miss Applewhite

            25th Mrs Lloyd, Mrs Nelson.    23rd Mrs Young, Mrs Lloyd.


My apologies for missing this list last month. Aren't some readers observant. I hope that the Church still got cleaned! Ed.





Thursday 3rd           Library Van

Monday 7th               Luncheon Club, 12.30pm Centre

                                    Green Bin

Tuesday 8th              Tuesday Club Coffee Morn. 10.30am V.H.

Thursday 10th           WI party, 7.30pm Village Hall

Monday 14th             Silver Bin

Wednesday 16th       Garden Club AGM 7.30pm Centre.

Thursday 17th           Library Van

Friday 18th               Tennis Club AGM, 7.30pm Centre.

Monday 21st            Comm. Centre AGM, 7.30pm Centre.

Wednesday 23rd       Tuesday Club Outing, 9.30am Vill. Green

                                   Green Bin

Monday 28th            Silver Bin



Saturday 12th            Village Gala Day

‘Village organisations and local bodies - if at anytime you would like to get in touch with a village contact, why not try the village website.'