Civic Trust News 2016

Winter 2016

Chairman’s Report - The Civic Trust Lands an Unexpected Scoop

This has been a frustrating year for The Civic Trust with things that matter to the Village seeming to be on permanent hold. The Neighbourhood Plan is still in limbo, we await the result of ESBC’s Lottery Application for funds for Brook Hollows, and the Village Archive is still under discussion.

However, on the 25th June, at John of Rolleston School, a full house of Civic Trust Members were present to hear, first hand, about the traumatic events which gripped the Country just forty-eight hours before.

We had again decided to invite a prominent speaker to visit us at our Summer Event and some nine months before had persuaded our MP, Andrew Griffiths, to come along and talk about his political career. This talk was to be accompanied by drinks and nibbles, followed by supper and a quiz on the theme of Parliament. Not very exciting you may think, but members were assured that Andrew is a very good speaker and is well versed on the history of our Parliament. Also the supper was bound to be first class as it was being prepared by our own Mayor, Beryl Toon, who though very busy, would not hear of anyone else providing for our needs.

We were not made aware at the time we were making these arrangements that the Prime Minister was going to give the Country the opportunity to vote in a referendum on some small matter concerning Europe. We also did not know that the date for this referendum was to be two days before our well planned event.

When we did find out a small amount of panic crept in, would our speaker want to come, or even be able to come, to our little gathering so soon after such an historic moment for our Country. Could we possibly carry on, would refunds have to be made? Came the day, came our speaker.

We are all aware that Andrew has a high regard for Rolleston, and he did not let us down. It was clear from the start that the result of the Referendum had shocked Andrew and indeed the whole of the Government. Most of the talk and questions revolved round the issues now facing us, but Andrew was clear on the major point, The Country had decided and it was the duty of Parliament to deliver on that decision.

The debate will continue for some years and no one can predict the outcome, but the decision was democratically made, and the first group of his constituents who Andrew was able to discuss this with was the Members of Rolleston Civic Trust. What a scoop!

If you don’t want to miss our future scoops, come along to our monthly meeting at Rolleston Cricket Club, and if you want to be a member of such a dynamic Society, come and join us as a member. I can’t promise that we will be at the edge of world events all the time, but we will try.

Future Programme

Wednesday 16th November
John Jones
Underground in Derbyshire’s Old Abandoned Metal Mines

Wednesday 18th January
Richard Stone

Wednesday 15th February

Wednesday 15th March
Annual General Meeting and Heather Herrington
Making “The Duchess” at Kedleston Hall

Meetings at the Cricket Club, 7.30 for 8.00 pm


Time For Change (December 2016)

“Rollestonian” has now been running since 1982. The proposal for a quarterly village magazine was initiated by David Bloor and Steve Lewis, then Chairman and Secretary, respectively, of Rolleston Civic Trust. With better access to typing and copying facilities, Sylvia and I quickly became involved in production and we have been editing the magazine for over 30 years. During this time it has grown from the original 8 page, 8 advert news sheet to the current 32 – 36 page magazine with 40 - 50 regular business advertisers.

Rollestonian has also proved a convenient method of communication for the Parish Council and the yellow insert has been included from the earliest issues. They have also collaborated by organising the village volunteer distribution.

Advertisement sponsorship has allowed us to maintain a free circulation to the whole village and as it has grown we now have a print run of 1,600 copies per issue. The support of Mrs Clare Norman in sharing the work by managing advertising material and income has been invaluable.

We have enjoyed the input of interested residents and of all the village organisations (with occasional prompts on deadlines!) in providing a record of village issues and events.

The Civic Trust has been fortunate in finding willing volunteers to succeed us. Mrs Lesley Bayston, with the assistance of Mrs Pamela Tulloch, will take over the editing and Mrs Anne Overton will coordinate advertising. We are sure that they will continue to get the support that we have received and we wish them well in whatever way that they might want to change or “modernise” the presentation. We shall still be here but just contributing.

Signing off,

Tom & Sylvia Martin

Autumn 2016
Rolleston Civic Trust Tree Project

Aim of Project

To increase the total population of trees within the Rolleston on Dove Parish Boundary. In the first instance the objective should be to consider large deciduous trees that are indigenous to the British Isles such as Oak, Beech, Chestnut etc.


There is concern that the total number of large trees within the Parish boundary is decreasing. This may be put down to the age of the tree population and the fact that there has not been a recent programme of replacement and planting. Walking the village you can see that there are quite a number of large, generally oak, trees and in the majority of cases these are in fields or in the hedgerows making up the field boundary or by the side of the road. It is probably the case that most, if not all, of the large trees found in domestic gardens were there before the houses were built. The policy of leaving potentially large trees in gardens where there is a possibility that damage to property could occur is not realistic in the long term. Eventually the tree has to come down or be trimmed to such an extent that it does not form its natural canopy and hence looks unsightly.


The first thing that we need to do is carry out a survey to establish how many trees there are now. It is appropriate to carry this out this summer whilst the leaves are on as its much easier to identify the type of tree. To this end we have four volunteers who are recording the trees that they can see. However, there are quite a lot of large trees in people's gardens and we would like you to help us by telling us where they are; what type, and if possible their girth and condition. This is only a 'heads up' at this time and hence you do not have to be a tree specialist to give a rough idea of condition. If you know the age of the tree, all the better. For instance near where I live there is: Acer, Canadian Maple; girth 73cm (29"); healthy; about 12m tall; planted in about 1989. We will then construct a spread sheet and record them. There is nothing sinister in our survey; we are not trying to increase the number of trees with TPOs we are just looking at numbers and trying to predict how many there will still be in 10, 20 years time.

Also of interest is knowledge of how many large trees have had to be cut down in the last 20 years? Have you had to have a tree cut down - if so could you tell us what it was and when it was cut down?

Also, have you planted any larger-species deciduous trees in the last 20 years and if so what size are they now?
We are looking at starting to plant trees next spring and so if anybody has land suitable then the plan is for the Civic Trust to provide the tree and discuss how to have it planted.

Please support this project so that we provide the future generations with a landscape including lovely trees.

If you feel you can support it, please contact Phil Irwin by email; or phone 01283 521180 and leave your name and contact number.

Autumn Programme

Wednesday 21st September
The making of “The Duchess” at Kedleston
Talk by Heather Herrington

Wednesday 19th October
Characters from the Classroom
Talk by John Redfern

Wednesday 16th November
Underground in Derbyshire Old Abandoned Metal Mines
Talk by John Jones

Meetings at Rolleston Cricket Club, 8.00 pm

Summer 2016

Chairman’s Report 2015-2016

At the AGM on the 16th March 2016 The Committee for 2016/2017 was elected as follows :-

Chairman: Peter Barnett
Vice Chairman: Roger Gawthorpe
Secretary: Vanessa Winstone
Treasure:r Michael Hill
Sue Fraser
Phil Irwin
Ann Overton

For the small Committee assembled in 2015 it has been hard work but I think we have all enjoyed it. We have been helped by our small band of volunteers carrying out our village projects and helping at events, and producing The Rollestonian. This has been my sixth year as Chairman in an original allocation of three, and Vanessa Winstone has been our able Secretary for I don’t know how long. Tom Martin has been producing the Rollestonian, with a little help from Sylvia I should think, for as long as we can remember. Finally I must mention our trusty band of members who regularly turn up at our monthly meetings and attend our events.

Meetings Programme

Our programme started in April with a very interesting and enlightening talk by Dave Robbie about J R Tolkien and his association with Staffordshire, especially Cannock Chase. May was our walk and talk, more of which later, and in June Margret George told us all about Chartley Castle.

Things went a little awry in September and October for various reasons. Just before the September meeting we were informed our planned speaker was ill and Sue Fraser had to quickly organise a replacement, Margret Bullock stepped into the breach and brought us all up to date with developments at The National Arboretum. In October we all sat awaiting the arrival of Steve Booth who was to give a talk about The Fauld Explosion. This talk had generated a lot of interest and the Cricket Club was full, however we had not anticipated that JCB would unload several diggers on the A50 roundabout at Uttoxeter causing grid lock in that area and that our speaker would be in the middle of it. After regular bulletins on his lack of progress we had to finally concede defeat and all go home.

November saw us back on track with a talk by Malcolm Goode on Burton’s role in The First World War, and the start of the New Year saw the return of Richard Stone with an extremely illuminating talk about The Luttrell Psalter, a very valuable historical document.

The Gremlins hit us again in February when events at the Cricket Club on the Wednesday evening, through no fault of The Cricket Club themselves, led to a hurried cancellation of the evening. Our final talk at our AGM was a resume of the work of the Woodland Trust by Gerald Price.


Our first event of the year was in May with our usual plant swop at the Old Grammar School which raised £150 for St Mary’s.

Also in May our Walk and Talk event saw 40 members climbing the hill to Sinai House for a visit to this local historic old house followed by a visit to The Albion for sandwiches and chips.

Our winter event was our annual mulled wine at Apple Acres in January. The turnout of members for this year’s event was excellent and the raffle raised £139 which will be used to fund a feasibility study for alterations to the Church.

Village Projects

Spread Eagle Island and Burnside Troughs
We continue to assist The Parish Council in maintenance work on the Island and on Burnside with the help of Janet Sanderson and her small band of helpers. They really do put in a lot of work which is much appreciated.

Brook Hollows
ESBC have finally bowed to pressure from the public, The Parish Council and The Civic Trust and are prepared to fund remedial works to Brook Hollows to save this valuable asset for the Village and to promote the proud heritage of our Village to the area as a whole. Funds have been promised by ESBC and they are actively pursuing Heritage Lottery Funding on behalf of the village to enable de- silting and other necessary works to be carried out to ensure a future for the gardens and The Village Heritage.

There is still a lot of work to do but we are on the way. We now have to galvanise action in the village and ensure local support for the project to provide success. We hope to do this in conjunction with ESBS, The Parish Council and all other bodies in the village.

Village Archive
We have held several meetings with the PCC to try and progress this project and we are now trying to obtain funding from various bodies to progress a feasibility study for alterations to the Church Vestry which will hopefully house the Village Archive. This is going to be a long term project bearing in mind other priorities for the Church.

The news regarding the future of The Rollestonian is worrying. Tom Martin has advised that next year will be his final year editing and producing the village magazine. The Rollestonian without Tom (and Sylvia) is hard to imagine, but everyone, at some time, must say enough is enough, and sadly for the Civic Trust Tom has come to that time. His presence and work with the Rollestonian will be sorely missed. Also Clare Norman has decided that the time has come to relinquish the task of obtaining and managing the advertising in the magazine at the end of this next year, again Clare’s input and experience will be sorely missed. Our only hope in continuing to issue the Rollestonian to the Village is that we can find someone who is prepared to take up the reins and carry on the good works. We are therefore looking for volunteers to work with Tom and Clare over the next year with the aim of taking over in 2017. Anyone interested?

Again the year has been dominated by the uncertainty regarding The College Playing Field Site and our Neighbourhood Plan, both of which are going nowhere. The Secretary of State is still to release his decision in regard to the playing fields and ESBC continue to sit on their hands re our village plan, but they have managed to now produce their much delayed Local Plan, which of course includes the college development. Where we go from here I do not know, but I fear the worst.

The Village boundary continues to be under attack from large housing developments and their effect on the traffic situation in the village is already being felt.

One worrying development concerns the banks of the Dove in Marston Lane which are now to be filled with solar panels. Is anything sacred in the current panic for so called renewable energy sources?

Next page
We now look forward to another year and will continue to hold our meetings in the newly refurbished Cricket Club and we are most grateful to the Members and Committee at the Cricket Club for their continuing support and help. We hope we can continue to fulfil the objects of The Civic Trust and ensure Rolleston’s continuing success as a wonderful and friendly place to live.

Peter Barnett
Chairman Rolleston Civic Trust


All talks in the Cricket Club 7.45 for 8.00 pm

Wednesday 18th May
The Fauld Explosion Steve Booth

Wednesday 15th June
Ticket Event. Walk and Talk around Rolleston led by Janet Spavold. To be followed by a light supper at
Rolleston Club. 6.15pm prompt for a 6.30pm start. £6 including supper

Spring 2016

Chairman’s Repor

The New Year has arrived and it is time to forget the frustrations of 2015, we hope.

Our Village Neighbourhood plan still languishes in the bowels of some ESBC cellar and we still wait to hear from the Secretary of State as to our fate in regard to The College Playing Field Development, despite his statement that a decision would be made by the 12th November 2015. Localism has passed Rolleston by it seems. I cannot see a good outcome for the Village, but I must resist the temptation for sarcastic comment or pessimism, the future may be rosy.

For The Civic Trust 2016 is looking good. Our programme is full throughout the year with a wide range of subjects and speakers, some new and a few of our old favourites. Our venue remains The Cricket Club and their extension works are well underway. Our early meetings will take place in the Bar until the refurbished lounge is available, but the future looks good and I am sure the new club building will be a credit to the Cricket Club’s members and reflect the hard work they have put in over the years and give them the success they deserve. To take advantage of our free programme of speakers in comfortable and friendly surroundings, all you have to do is come along and join us on the third Wednesday of the month. Our Summer event this year will be a buffet event with an opportunity to meet Andrew Griffiths and hear about “life as an MP”. This will be a ticket event with restricted numbers, make sure you watch out for tickets going on sale.

We continue to support The Parish Council in ensuring the village looks its best and a small band of our members and supporters continue to maintain the troughs on Burnside and the Spread Eagle Island. We cannot thank them enough for their efforts and the time they devote to the village. Again if you would like to help, come along to our meetings.

One bright light on the horizon is the possibility of works being undertaken by ESBC in Brook Hollows. Following years of neglect the patience of the village finally snapped and after the raising of a petition by one concerned villager and pressure from the Parish Council and The Civic Trust. ESBC have finally taken notice. Funds have been promised and a bid is being prepared to try and obtain Heritage Lottery Funding. First indications from The Lottery Fund are good but a lot of work remains to be done. What is really important is that the village is seen to want Brook Hollows, to use the area as much as possible and to fully support the efforts being made to ensure it remains for the future use of the village. That is up to us all.

Our small Committee has pledged to continue the hard work for the coming year, this proves they must enjoy it really, but does the village really appreciate The Civic Trust. If you do, come and see us and join in the fun. Here’s to a lively and happy 2016.

Peter Barnett

Spring Programme

All talks in the Cricket Club 7.45 for 8.00 pm

Wednesday 17th February
Calke Abbey - Dot Morson

Wednesday 16th March
Work of the Woodland Trust - Gerald Price
Annual General Meeting

Wednesday 20th April
Necessary Addictions - Janet Spavold

Sunday 15th May, 2 – 4 pm
Plant Sale & Swap in the Old Grammar School
Refreshments available
Proceeds to St Mary’s Church

Wednesday 18th May
The Fauld Explosion - Steve Booth

Wednesday 15th June
Walk & Talk around Rolleston
Meet 6.45 pm for 7.00 pm. Ticket Event. Refreshments to follow

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Last updated: 12 November 2016