Community Group Newsletter Winter 2017/18

Our latest newsletter, outlining our recent activities, must begin with a big “THANK YOU” to all the volunteers. None of our village activities would be possible if it was not for the help and encouragement of so many volunteers. Our committee, with its 12 members, is now at full capacity and when we have asked other members to help with various things, they willingly gave up their time to dig, paint, bake, pour, wash, pack, post or generally support.
Every year we seem to surpass the achievements of the previous fayre and this year was no exception. As usual the Village Hall looked lovely with its Christmas trimmings as a cold nip in the air provided a seasonal background. This year attendance was boosted by children from seven local schools, who not only performed beautifully in the Church but brought their mums, dads and grandparents with them. The Village Hall was “heaving” throughout the day and with so many new and varied stalls on show, everybody benefited.
We are especially grateful to everyone who donated up to £400 worth of raffle prizes or brought homemade cakes, buns and mince pies, which made the cake stall look fabulous. Thanks are also due to the Art Society for their display in the Church and we were glad to be able to support six charities, including Macmillan nurses, Cavendish Cancer Care, Stocksbridge Community Leisure Centre, the Shoe Box Appeal, and The Ugandan School Funds as well as the Village Hall Trust and St Mary’s Church. The success of the fayre was once again underpinned by all the voluntary help we received and, without naming everyone individually, a great big THANK YOU!
An appeal went out last year for greenery in order to boost our wreath making stocks and this year’s event was supported by lots of people who brought their own greenery. We had a total of 30 large sacks of it! However, once again, everyone seemed to go home more than happy with their Christmas wreaths, which had a professional touch to them. In conjunction with this festive event, we piloted our first Christmas Table Decoration Evening. The smaller, select group of flower arrangers agreed that this event had also been a success and something they would hope we repeat next year.
You may have read in Look Local that The Community Group was pleased to be able to support an idea, initially brought to our meeting by the Choir representative, who worked with the Heritage Group and local Bolsterstone residents. It was suggested that we should commission a commemorative plaque for the Old Free School, founded in 1686 and situated just down from the village on Sunny Bank Road. An unveiling event held at the Free School was attended by over 60 former teachers, pupils, friends and neighbours of the school, which was closed by the Local Authority in 1992. Thanks to the hosts and everyone who attended the Open House morning, it was a lovely event where so many different groups of people from the village shared memories and stories of the school with their friends. The commissioning of the plaque and the event itself reflected the importance of preserving the village’s traditions and heritage. The plaque is visible from the road, being situated externally on the South facing wall of the Old Free School.
After the idea for a defibrillator was initially put to the Community Group from members of the Church and the Village Hall Trust, and after lots of discussion and numerous phone calls to the Ambulance Service, a defibrillator has been purchased by the Community Group, supported by the Bridge Shop and the local Ward Pot Grant scheme. With the cooperation of the Village Hall Trust, the life saving equipment will be installed on an exterior wall of the Village Hall. The coded cabinet will be accessible via an emergency 999 call. It could save a life, and The Yorkshire Ambulance Service will run a familiarisation course in January. In addition we propose to spread the message about the defibrillator’s benefits at our own Annual General Meeting on Tuesday 20th March 2018. (More details to follow)
Several Community Group members have alerted us to the threats to nearby Green Open Space posed by the recent planning application for 93 homes to be built alongside Carr Road. The Sheffield Plan, dated 2013, designates Hollin Busk as “Open Space outside the Green Belt, worthy of protection for its green character…not to be built on to check unrestricted urban sprawl and to safeguard the countryside from encroachment…”
Members have also pointed out that the proposed Carr Road development is just across Hollin Busk Road, where developments are underway on land at the old Maples Garden Centre, which is in fact in the Green Belt, close to Bolsterstone. We will continue to feed in our comments on your behalf, in line with the group’s constitution – “The aim of the Group shall be to promote the well-being of the people of Bolsterstone and adjoining areas by the advancement of education and information and the conservation of the environment”.
Members wishing to send in their own comments to Sheffield City Council’s Planning and Highways Department should do so as soon as possible, using ref: 17/04673/OUT.
Because of the effort by so many volunteers in helping the group raise money to be spent in the village, we have decided to plant up the village troughs for winter as well as summer this year, as part of the ongoing “In Bloom” programme. In addition to the bulbs, which we plant annually, and despite its altitude, the village should look even better this year. We have also been busy with our ongoing village maintenance programme, painting fencing, mending the allotment shed roof, removing the Tour de Yorkshire bunting and ordering the street sweeper to clean up the village etc.
• Wednesday 24th January (to be confirmed by Yorkshire Ambulance Service) – Defibrillator familiarisation – Village Hall, 7pm
• Tuesday 20th March – Annual General Meeting – Village Hall, 7pm – with defibrillator general awareness input.
• Saturday 17th November – Christmas Fayre – Village Hall, 10am to 3pm
• Tuesday/Wednesday 18/19th December – Christmas Decorations Evening (to be
confirmed) – Village Hall, 7pm
We would like to take this opportunity to wish everyone a “Happy New Year” for 2018.