Focal Point - March 2008


FOCAL POINT       Issue No. 328


March 2008


Ed's Comments


In this months edition we have a request for someone to undertake the distribution and collection of the ‘Red Cross' boxes. I am sure that someone will volunteer.

In addition, you will see that the Village Quiz raised some £200 more than last year and I was quite moved to see the charities to which some of this money was being donated. Well done to those who made that decision and especially well done to all those who made it possible.

You may or may not have noticed that when someone has something for me to publish that relates to a charity, I invariably include the ‘logo' of the organisation concerned. Whilst using one this month it made me realise what kind-hearted and generous villages we live in.

These are the charities Logos that I have kept on file that we have sponsored:-


 RNIB - Children's Society - ‘Bliss' the Premature Baby charity -National Children's Home - Christian Aid - Heart Foundation - Kidney Research - McMillan Cancer Relief - Marie Curie Cancer Care - Motor Neurone Disease - St John Ambulance - Diabetes UK - Salvation Army  and Hope and Homes for Children.


This list does not include the two that the Community Centre Committee have chosen. Quite an impressive list isn't it?


As it is St Patrick's Day on the 17th of this month, I thought that I would include an Irish saying:-


May the winds of fortune sail you

May you sail a gentle sea

May it always be the other guy

Who says "This drinks on me"


May you all have a lovely Easter

Cliff Newbold


Closing date for the April edition is the 21st March.







The Quiz on February 9th was a great success. The event raised just over £600 which will be shared between the Community Centre and the two charities (Epilepsy Research UK and Beaumond House Newark Hospice) associated with David Jackson and Alan Taylor.


The winning team from Holme (again!) was presented with the new David Jackson Shield, kindly donated by Al Myatt.


We are extremely grateful to David Barthorpe who stepped in to act as Quizmaster. He asked difficult questions in the nicest way and the success of the evening was very much due to him. Thanks also to everyone else who helped with the raffle, the food and setting-up the chairs and equipment.




The next Lunch will be at 12.30pm on Monday, 3rd March at the Community Centre. The menu will be:


Roast Chicken with Stuffing



Cheese-filled Fillet of Haddock with Mornay Sauce  


Mashed Potatoes, Carrots & Peas


             Toffee Apple Cheesecake with Cream




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




When we put on events like the Quiz and the Lunch Club we rely on Jo and Martin to sell the tickets for us. They do this in addition to issuing the Community Centre keys to hirers and helping in other ways for which we are extremely grateful.


We have to limit the number of tickets on sale for practical reasons and this means people sometimes miss out. However frustrating this might be for those concerned it is not the fault of Jo and Martin and they should not be made to feel any pressure as a result. We do ask you to be considerate and not to make their job harder than it needs to be.


There will be another performance by the Robin Hood Theatre at the Centre during March but, as last time, the tickets will not be on sale at the Post Office. Please see the posters for details.


Frances Kelly, Chairman




Both meetings in March will be in the Village Hall as usual.


Tuesday, 11th March. Morning coffee, 10.30am, 50p.


Tuesday, 25th March.  Slide show. The raffle on this occasion will have an Easter theme.


Advance notice:Wednesday, 23rd April. Outing to Hardwick Hall & Gardens. If any non-members are interested in joining us on this outing please contact me (Tel. 704241).The cost will be £16 for non-National Trust Members and £9 for Members. Full details will appear in April Focal Point.


Jean Foden.





Mrs. Sylvia Lloyd our President welcomed members and our speaker to the meeting.

Business was discussed and correspondence read, including an invitation from North and South Clifton Institute to their Birthday party. Mesdames Viv Clarkson and Sue Reynolds said they would go. The Amateur Operatic's Production in April was discussed and it was agreed to leave it for this year as arrangements had been left too late. If members wanted to go they should make their own plans.


Members who had not paid their £27 subscription were reminded that this was now due.

A request for nominations for the committee produced two names to be put forward for election next month at the A.G.M.

Two names were taken for a calligraphy day at County House in April. One member decided to put her name in a Denman College Bursary draw which will take place at the Spring Council meeting in Nottingham.


Then our speaker was introduced - Maggie Rampling President of Elston W.I. The lights were dimmed and candles, which had been placed on card tables around the room, were lit, giving a golden glow to the proceedings. Her talk was called "Candles, Quotes and Girl talk". The girl talk came first, and no, it did not include clothes, shoes or handbags, but "the good old days" of our youth. For example, Monday washday with dolly tubs etc., cold meat and bubble and squeak dinners with the clothes horse round the fire on bad drying days.


Although it was St.Valentine's day we did not have any love quotes, but a pretty profound one from a young Nottinghamshire poet.

Then the candles and the effect they can have on any occasion, giving a cosy glow around. However, when she came to refer  to her notes she had to hold the candle close to the papers to see. A nostalgic but highly amusing talk.

Mrs. Barbara Nelson gave a vote of thanks.


A competition for a hair slide was won by Mrs. Barbara Finn with Mesdames Pat Nelson and Margaret Hewitt second and third.


Our next meeting is the Annual General Meeting on March 13th in the

Village Hall. The hostesses are Sheila Palmer and Sandra Leigh.


Daphne Marshall.


Garden Club


Hazel Kaye spoke to us on 'Climbing Plants & Wall Shrubs' .  Illustrated by beautiful slides taken in her own garden and elsewhere, especially National Trust properties; this was a polished performance.  Her commentary was both informative and amusing with many anecdotal references. 

Numerous less common plants were featured and these were clearly a passion.  Sadly, Hazel is retiring at the end of the year so anyone wanting to visit her two and a half acre garden must do so soon. 


On a different note, our main outing this year is to Bressingham on

June 18th.  As in recent years, we plan to have an evening meal on the return journey.


Our next meeting on March 19th  will be addressed by

J. Harry on the subject 'Gardening with Herbs'.


Ian Wilson


Winthorpe Cricket Club                       


Time once again to set finger to keyboard for the monthly update.  The time

seems to come round extremely quickly these days no sooner has one report been despatched than I am scratching my head with what to say in the next one.  I have been down to the ground this morning to check on things and am glad to say that we still have a "blank canvas" which will hopefully remain the situation for the distant future.  This first summer with the pavilion in situ will be the test, as even the most ardent of graffiti artist would be loathed to venture out given the weather at present. 


As I reported last month, we are busy working in the background preparing for the forthcoming season.  Our search for funds both to provide plant and equipment for the ongoing maintenance of the ground and also the provision of the new roof continues, however, we are now being assisted by Andy Hardy and his colleagues at Kelham Hall.  Over the next couple on months there will be some activity down at the ground as we carry out the final service connections and hard landscaping.  Additionally we need to beg, borrow or steal plant and equipment so we can prepare and maintain the pitch, the outfield and perimeter for the forthcoming season.  So if you or you know of anyone who may have second hand equipment for sale that would be suitable please get in touch.


Following the donation from Councillor Dobson, that we received in January,

I am also pleased to have received another donation in February.  That happiness is however tinged with sadness as the donation has been made by the former Winthorpe Village Choir which unfortunately disbanded at the back end of last year.  We would like to thank the committee and members of the choir for their donation it will certainly be put to good use.

We are continuing to look at fundraising in order to provide a roof for the pavilion.  I will keep Focal Point updated of our progress, however, if in the meantime you are aware of any sources of funding or would like to play the part of benevolent benefactor, or know someone who might, please give me or any other member of the club a call, you will be assured of a warm welcome.  Over the coming weeks we should be able to be more specific regarding our targets once we have completed the current phase of works and have established final costs.


I'd also like to remind you about the Bonus Ball draw which runs throughout the year providing the club with much needed funds.  Without it we would find it impossible to survive, so if you find yourself in the Lord Nelson why not try your luck. 

Just ask the bar staff for details of how to enter and it only costs a £1.

A couple of dates to note are that Duck Day will be held on it's traditional date of late May Bank holiday, which I believe is 26th May.

 The Cricket Club AGM will be held 4th March 2008 at the Community Centre if you are available please pop along.  Additionally the Club would like to invite you all down to an Open Day on Sunday 27th April to take a look at the new pavilion.  In addition to this there will be friendly game being held versus a "Guest" XII in memory of our former Chairman Paul Evans which we hope will become an annual event.  Light refreshments will be available on the day so please cup along for a cup of tea, a bun and a look round or any combination of the three.


This season in addition to the Focal Point update we are hoping to post information onto the village website, technology permitting, so keep your eyes peeled.  Once again thank you all for your continued support.


Contact Details

Andy Fereday - 678622 - Ashley Locke - 703988 - Peter Bateson - 704787 - Simon Potter - 612968





April is usually the month when children get ready to enter the Giant Sunflower Competition. This year it is different as Easter Sunday, the starting day for the competition, is in the month of March.


Competitors must be:

  • Children who live in Winthorpe, Langford or Holme and are born after the 1st of September 1996.
  • All pupils who attend Winthorpe Primary School and who may live outside the three villages.


The competition will start on Easter Sunday, 23rd March, when the children will sow their sunflower seeds.

The competition will end on Sunday, 7th September, when the children will telephone me with their results.

Each pupil at school will receive on Thursday, 13th March, a packet of sunflower seeds.

If you wish to buy your own seeds, you will require SUNFLOWER GIANT SINGLE, which can be obtained from Wilkinson's. Each packet costs 49p and has 75 seeds.  




Fill your 9cm plastic plant pots with potting compost. Make a hole with your finger into each pot about 2cm deep. Push one seed into the hole, cover with compost and water. Place on a windowsill. Watch out for the seeds germinating. This takes about 7 to 10 days.


Pat Finn


Whist Drive


The date for the next and last whist drive for this winter is:-

Thursday 27th March commencing at 7 o'clock in the Village Hall.

Thank you for your support and for turning in over those cold and dark evenings.


Dennis Taylor


A Smile?




A middle-aged woman had a heart attack and was taken to the hospital.
While on the operating table, she had a near death experience.
Seeing God, she asked, "Is my time up?"
God said, "No, you have another 43 years, 2 months and 8 days to live.

Upon recovery, the woman decided to stay in the hospital and have
a facelift, liposuction, and a tummy tuck. She even had someone come
in and change her hair colour.  Since she had so much more time to
live, she figured she might as well make the most of it. 
After her last operation, she was released from the hospital.

While crossing the street on her way home, she was killed by an

Arriving in front of God, she demanded, "I thought you said I had
another 40 years? Why didn't you pull me out of the path of the

      God replied, "I didn't recognize you."


Apologies to anyone who didn't find it amusing. Ed


Winthorpe festival - Gala day




At the meeting where we discussed the Fete it was suggested that we have a further exhibition, after much debate I was asked to look at  - ‘Ladies at Work.'

It appears that this subject was entirely appropriate in the light of the upsurge of interest in the Land Army.

So ladies, what work did or do you do? Would you be prepared to write an account of your days at work? If so please get in touch Tel. 703271.


Don't be shy; I know we have ex Wrens. Write about your time there, if you have photos or memorabilia all the better.

I have one young lady who played for silent films!

Were you in the Women's Land Army?

How about the young ladies still working as Secretaries, Accountants, etc, whilst managing to pull in other activities. - Write me a story.


Any young or older farmers wives who pull in milking with bringing up a family!

We could also have the Nurses, did you train in a Training Hospital? Remember P.T.S. Pre Lim, Hospital finals; where are your hospital badges? Or are you training at University? - Tell us about it.

Have you something of particular interest in the bringing up of your children?  Don't forget that was part of your work. You might have helped them overcome a particular difficulty?

It's all interesting; so get your pens out.

I look forward to hearing from you.


Keith J Lloyd


All Saints Church - Flowers for Easter.




We would be delighted if you would meet up with us again and decorate your usual area for Easter - Every effort is so appreciated.

The church will be open from 3-30pm Good Friday 21st March.

If for some reason you are unable to participate, please ring me on 703271.

If you do not normally help with the flowers but have a special memoriam for which you would like to provide flowers, please contact me on the above number.

Thank you all,


Sylvia Lloyd


Red Cross

    I am unable to co-ordinate the Red Cross collection this year due to a more pressing and on-going commitment. However I would be pleased if someone else has some time available during the first week of May who would be able to fill my shoes.
 There isn't much to it, there is a list of 10 people who all need to have an empty collection box delivered to them which will then be returned to you at the end of the door to door collection week.

It is a specific week; the 4th -10th of May.
I would love to see the Red Cross supported in my absence.

If you can help please contact me on Tel.706640.


Julie Stone


Another Poem I rather like,


As You Go Through Life

Don't look for the flaws as you go through life;
   And even when you find them,
It is wise and kind to be somewhat blind,
   And look for the virtue behind them;
For the cloudiest night has a hint of light
   Somewhere in its shadows hiding;
It's better by far to hunt for a star,
   Than the spots on the sun abiding.
The current of life runs ever away
   To the bosom of God's great ocean.
Don't set your force ‘gainst the river's course,
   And think to alter its motion.
Don't waste a curse on the universe,
   Remember, it lived before you;
Don't butt at the storm with your puny form,
   But bend and let it go o'er you.
The world will never adjust itself
   To suit your whims to the letter,
Some things must go wrong your whole life long,
   And the sooner you know it the better.
It is folly to fight with the Infinite,
   And go under at last in the wrestle.
The wiser man shapes into God's plan,
   As water shapes into a vessel.


Ella Wheeler Wilcox



Memories of Miss Josephine Gilstrap and Winthorpe House in the 1930's.......


"My first memories of Miss Josephine Gilstrap were when I was six years old. That particular morning Miss Gilstrap arrived in her chauffeur driven Daimler, I think she was asking or telling my mother to put us four children in a home as my father had left my mother. I can well remember standing on the left hand side of the fireplace and my sister aged seven years, one year older than me, crying terrible, and me crying too. Whatever Miss Gilstrap said to my mother that day I really do not know, but I do know my mother was adamant about keeping us and she did.

Our lives revolved around Miss Gilstrap, her sister Lady Manners had no part in the running of their property, and Miss Gilstrap was the boss. Actually, without her, I suppose our lives would have been far different, she kept us going with Virol, Cod Liver Oil and Malt, Ovaltine, Horlicks and Calf's Foot Jelly. For my mother she also gave half a shoulder of lamb every weekend.

Our rent was 1/6d, (old money) which she did not take. It was a one-bedroom cottage, no gas or electricity in those days, we had water from the pump and the bucket toilet was down the garden.


I have this strange story about Miss Gilstrap, but I felt you should understand the sort of person she was. My mother was always grateful to her for the help she gave us, I often think a nice bit of stewing steak would have been nicer than the Cod Liver Oil and Malt. Our lives were Miss Gilstrap's concern until I was 19 years old.

When I was 15, (in 1933) I went to work for Miss Gilstrap as a kitchen maid at Winthorpe House. Kitchen maid was the lowest position in the house; there was a haughty Lady's maid, two housemaids, the cook, chauffer, two gardeners and the garden boy, and the farm adjoined the estate. I worked there for three years and it was a very happy household. Miss Gilstrap treated us all very well. The village was looked after well and in the church she had a Madonna and Child in gilt fixed at the right of the church where she and Lady Manners always sat. I remember it being blessed by Rev. Gillett, the rector at the time.

I was allowed to go to the village dances and the cook had to go with me as chaperone. The dances used to go on until 2am and we always stayed until the end. Miss Gilstrap always paid our entrance fee, which I suppose was about 6d.

I think everyone in the village benefited from Miss Gilstrap. She was generous to everyone. When a pig was killed it was a busy time and I was always given the job of taking the pigs fry to the Alms Houses on Chapel Lane. I enjoyed doing it.

She gave all the staff a length of material for Christmas. I can never remember us having a Christmas party for the staff.

I think about twice a year she had a dance for the young people for her relations and friends and one could look down from the top of the house to the hall below. I was allowed to watch them, which to me was out of this world.


Although I lived in Winthorpe House for three years the only room I saw above the stairs was the billiard room which was very large, and where Miss Gilstrap and Lady Manners always sat by the coal fire. (no central heating then) They were both quite small ladies and never looked warm and comfortable. I don't suppose I saw Miss Gilstrap above six times during the whole time I worked there. My wage was 7/6d a week, which the cook had to ask for once a month. The rest of the staff was paid once a quarter. I still have the prayer book signed by Miss Gilstrap when I was confirmed. Villagers always said that Lady Manners married for the title (or was persuaded to) and the story went around that she paid Lord Manners to keep away from her. I do not know the truth of her marriage; she seemed such a timid tiny woman.

Miss Gilstrap still wanted to organise my life when I was 18, (1936) but by this time I had to go home to live (thankfully) because my poor mother had to be looked after.


Before I finish off this story, I must tell you about the basement kitchen, the floors were Minton tiled red with blue and cream borders. We had big iron saucepans for the staff food. Miss Gilstrap and Lady Manners had their food cooked in copper pans, which I used to clean with white and grey sand with vinegar added. The only meal they ever ate naturally was their Sunday lunch, all the other meat and vegetables were put through wire sieves. It was really hard work and every meal the potatoes were cooked differently; from crisps to mashed, to jacket potatoes with fillings. I learnt everything about cooking; I could pluck a stag in twenty minutes. I had to pluck and clean pheasants full of maggots. I will just say that since that time I have never made cooking a hobby. I had enough of it.

No laundry was ever done in this house. I presume Miss Gilstrap and Lady Manners must have been in their 60's when I worked for them. They all went abroad February to March and we did the spring-cleaning during their absence. I do not know where they are buried; I cannot find their graves at Winthorpe churchyard".


Mrs. Mabel Barber. March 1993.


My thanks to Pat Finn for researching and inserting this lovely article into the Village Scrapbook and website.




Work on the church tower is expected to begin this week. This has been made possible with the additional help from the Historic Churches Trust by providing a grant of £1100 from Waste Recycling Environmental Ltd.( WREN) who distribute the Landfill Tax Credits of Waste Recycling Group PLC (WRG).

The Historic Churches Trust is a registered charity whose aims are to assist with the restoration of Historic Churches and Chapels of all Christian denominations throughout Nottinghamshire.

Simon Settle of Waste recycling Environmental says, "We are very pleased to help finance this project which will ensure that a bit of Nottinghamshire's rich church heritage is preserved for generations to come".

A proportion of Nottingham Historic Churches Trust funds are raised by the annual sponsored Ride & Stride event early in September. Anyone who would wish to support this event please contact Alan Stone on 01636 702104.


The Landfill Tax credit scheme gives waste management companies the opportunity to divert 20% of their Landfill Tax into community, environmental, research and education projects. For more details about Wren, visit

The Waste Recycling Group provides a range of facilities to receive, treat, recycle and dispose of more than six million tonnes of waste a year. Facilities include a network of waste transfer stations and recycling centres, three liquid waste treatment plants, and energy from waste plants as well as landfill sites


We wish to thank Mrs Barbara Woodcock for volunteering to continue Kate Shelmerdine's collections for the Children's Society. Barbara will contact those who generously give to this worthy cause later in the year.


We were very sorry to hear about the death of Mr. Jim Randall who had lived in the village for many years and was well known in Newark through his shop and other activities. Since his wife Freda died he planted and maintained the shrubs around the Garden of Remembrance in the churchyard. He has been cremated in Kent near where his daughter Valerie lives. On Tuesday 4th March at 2pm in Winthorpe Church there will be a Service of Thanksgiving for his life and his ashes will be interred with those of Freda.

We would like to thank Mr Pat Roberts & Simeon Taylor for their help in trimming bushes in the Churchyard.


A Date for your Diary.


Mrs Bella Conn with the Collingham Singers will be giving a concert in Church on Friday 25th April commencing at 7.3Opm, the theme being ‘Celebrating the Fifties'. It will consist of two three quarter of an hour sessions with an interval for wine & nibbles. Tickets will be £5 and will be on sale mid March from the Post Office, Ann Stone & Sylvia Lloyd. If you would like to bring a cushion, please do.

We are hoping for a successful evening as the outside of the church is eroding and in need of a builder to do the pointing as I mentioned in February's Focal Point.


Church Bells:-


They will ring for practices on Thursday evenings from 7.3Opm until 9pm and possibly for the following:-

March 9th Holy Communion Service 10.1 5am

March 16th Palm Sunday Family Service 10.l5am

March 23rd Easter Day Holy Communion 10.l5am

Thursday March 27th Rochdale bellringers,  9. 50am - 10.25am


From the Registers:-

Holy Baptism -  Louis Cooke (Grandson of Mike Lawrence)


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.


For March Calendar:-


Friday 16th March 3.3Opm Ladies to decorate the Church for Easter.

Friday 25th April at 7.30pm in church - Concert by the Collingham Singers.




Dear all,


Advent, Christmas, Epiphany, and Lent, we seem to have been moving from one major church period without a pause.  The first three festivals follow fixed points. Lent on the other hand follows the Lunar Calendar and is controlled by the revolutions of the moon.  It has not fallen this early since 1913!

A question that is right to ask is, what is Lent all about?

At the heart Lent is about passion as much as denial.  The generally small sacrifices that some Christians make are significant to the individual undertaking them.

A question to be considered before undertaking any Lenten abstinence should be how does it glorify God, honour Jesus and proclaim a gospel of love and forgiveness.

The question might seem tricky because either giving up or taking up something that really draws into Jesus' passion may be a hard and troubling place.  The Bible however is clear that our Lenten fast, whatever it maybe, must be private and our demeanour must be light, thoughtful and uncomplaining.

On Ash Wednesday some Christians attend a service aimed at physically marking the season with an ‘Imposition of Ashes'.  For those taking part in this service it is an outward sign of Jesus' Sacrifice. The imposition is made from the previous years Palm Crosses burnt to ash, mixed with a little oil, blessed and then placed in the form of a cross on the participant's head.  Whatever the long term affect of ‘Ashing', it is certainly a moment which demonstrates obedience and discipline, recognising for a few hours at least, an outward expression of unity with Jesus.

A positive observance of the 40 days and nights of Lent can, if the time is used wisely, be enriching not only for the believer, but for the community at large.  This is achieved not in a boastful or miserable stance, but through an extra loving and forgiving manner.


On the 22nd March the high point of the Christian Calendar will be reached. In Winthorpe and throughout the East Trent Group of churches, the celebrations will begin on Easter Eve with a Service of Light. On Easter Day an act of worship will be held in every church, rejoicing in Jesus' resurrection.

Lent offers a period of inner thoughtful reflection.  Easter presents a moment of euphoria, from unbeliever, disbeliever to confirmed believer.   However the biblical text is received and understood, our engagement with Jesus' trial and miraculous resurrection, is central to our ongoing Christian journey.


We warmly welcome you to join us at Easter if not before!!!!


A happy Easter to you all, In Christian Love, David.






              SUNDAY 2nd   

                            9am                    Holy Communion, Holme.

                                                NO SERVICE IN WINTHORPE


            SUNDAY 9th       Fifth Sunday in Lent (Passion Sunday)                   

                                                10.15am                       Holy Communion, Winthorpe.

            5pm                             Evensong, Langford.


            SUNDAY 16th Palm Sunday

            9am                              Holy Communion, Langford.

            10.15am                       Family Service, Winthorpe.


            THURSDAY 20th Maunday Thursday

            10am                            Holy Communion (B.C.P.) Winthorpe.


            GOOD FRIDAY

            2pm - 3pm            Devotional Service with Hymns, Winthorpe


            SATURDAY 22nd

            7pm                             Service of Light, Winthorpe.


            SUNDAY 23re             EASTER DAY

            8.45am                         Presentation of Light, Langford.

            9am                              Holy Communion, Holme.

            10.15am                       Holy Communion, Winthorpe.


            SUNDAY 30th             2nd Sunday of Easter

                                                NO SERVICE IN WINTHORPE

            6.15pm                        East Trent Evensong at Harby








Monday 3rd                     Luncheon Club

                                       Silver Bin

Thursday 6th                    Library Van

Monday 10th                   Green Bin

Tuesday 11th                   Cricket Club AGM 7.30pm - Centre.

Thursday 13th                  WI meeting, 7.30pm - Village Hall.

Monday 17th                   Silver Bin.

Wednesday 19th              Garden Club, 7.30pm - Centre.

Monday 24th                   Green Bin

Tuesday 25th                   Tuesday Club Slide Show, 2.30pm - V.H.

Thursday 27th                  Whist Drive, 7pm - Village Hall.

Monday 31st                    Silver Bin.



  Wednesday 23rd            Tuesday Club Outing



‘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.'