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East Midlands Coalmining Heritage Forum

The next meeting of the East Midlands Coalmining Heritage Forum is on Saturday 21st October 2017 and is being hosted by the South Derbyshire Mining Preservation Group at their HQ at Gresley Old Hall and later at the nearby Conkers Discovery Centre (ex Rawdon Colliery site).  Visits take place in the earlier part of the day from 11am with the Forum meeting taking place at the Conkers Discovery Centre from 2pm – 3.30pm.

The East Midlands Coalmining Heritage Forum is in the process of being formed mainly to help improve communication and networking between coalmining heritage groups and organisations in the region, establish links with higher education establishments and to try and ensure that important documentation and artefacts are not lost in the event of the worst scenario – think Snibston, the John King Museum and the DH Lawrence Heritage Centre, all of which have closed since 2015.

A steering group have been working on the main aims and objectives for the Forum which includes the setting up of a Constitution etc.  The Steering Group had a meeting with representatives from the National Coalmining Museum for England at the end of May 2017 and they are interested in working with the Forum as a proto-type for forming regional coalmining heritage hubs.  One of the early parts of this initiative will be the running of a Coalmining Heritage Day Workshop during the autumn / winter period 2017-18.

Arnold’s History

A new course led by Bob Massey and entitled ‘Arnold in the 19th Century’ will be run in four sessions on 8th, 15th, 22nd and 29th January 2018 between 7.15pm – 9.15pm. The course fee is £20 and meetings will be held in Arnold Library Meeting Room (entrance via leisure centre)

Come and learn about Arnolds past

Old and new students welcome

No previous knowledge required

contact b.massey@virgin.net for details

Fieldwalking Survey at the site of St Edwin’s Chapel in Sherwood Forest.

Come and survey the site of the legendary St Edwin’s Chapel, one of the most important medieval sites in Sherwood Forest.

Help to research if the chapel marks the resting place of a saint, or if it was a chapel built as part of a designed romantic medieval parkland landscape…

The survey will take place on the 23rd – 27th of October, 2017.

You can book your place at £25 per day: http://mercian-as.co.uk/intro_days.html#fieldwalking

Fieldwalking:

By looking at the distribution of artefacts within a field we can begin to say something about the type and nature of past activity in that field. Fieldwalking uses girds or lines to divide up a field in order to allow the objective collection and recording of artefacts. Come and learn the techniques involved in this form of archaeological prospection.

The site:

King Edwin, the first Christian King of Northumbria, was killed in the year 633AD at the Battle of Hatfield somewhere in the area that later became Sherwood Forest, Nottinghamshire.

Help investigate if this site commemorates the place where Edwin’s body lay after his death, or if is a medieval chapel founded as part of the designed Arthurian parkland hunting landscape of the medieval palace of Clipstone. Is it a saint’s resting place or is it part of a later cult of Edwin, set in a designed landscape?

Survey the site of the chapel, and the surrounding area for Medieval, Saxon and even Roman occupation…

This is a real hands-on practical learning experience where you will undertake the survey yourself of this important archaeological and historic site, under expert supervision.

In 2011 Andy Gaunt identified the landscape of medieval Clipstone as a designed medieval landscape, which fulfilled a romantic ideal as seen in Arthurian legend (citing at that time the poem of Sir Gawain and the Green Knight as an example).

Mercian have been continuing to investigate the designed landscape of Clipstone, and have undertaken previous work at the site of St Edwin’s Chapel which has hinted at a 12th-13th century origin for the chapel.

Recent fieldwork by Mercian at Edwinstowe church has suggested that Edwinstowe was the centre of a medieval cult of St Edwin, with the church there having an orientation on the sunrise on St Edwin’s saints day: http://www.mercian-as.co.uk/reports/edwinstowe_church_survey_report_2017.pdf

The research has also suggested that St Edwin’s Chapel was created as part of the emerging designed Arthurian style landscape in the late 12th and early 13th century.

This project will continue ongoing investigations into the designed landscape of Clipstone, and the origin of St Edwin’s Chapel.

The site is near to King’s Clipstone, and a map of where to meet will be sent with more details after you book your place.

We really hope to see you there for what promises to be a really interesting fieldwork opportunity!

Best wishes,

Andy, Sean and David
Directors,
Mercian Archaeological Services CIC

Survey of Edwinstowe Church

We are very pleased to be writing to you with a link to the recently released archaeological report by Mercian Archaeological Services CIC, regarding a survey of Edwinstowe church, in Sherwood Forest, Nottinghamshire:

Here is a link to the report from the survey of Edwinstowe Church.

http://www.mercian-as.co.uk/reports/edwinstowe_church_survey_report_2017.pdf

Edwinstowe means ‘Edwin’s Holy Place’ and the report by Mercian Archaeological Services CIC, as part of the Sherwood Forest Archaeology Project (a community archaeology research project), has shown that Edwinstowe church, in the medieval period, pointed at the sunrise on the 12th October, which is the saint day of St Edwin.

St Edwin was previously King Edwin. He was the first Christian King of Northumbria, who died on the 12th of October at the battle of Hatfield in the year 633AD.

St Edwin’s day on the 12th October, was the anniversary of his death.

In medieval times the people of Edwinstowe kept a vigil and held a feast in the churchyard at Edwinstowe on his saints day each year.

This research helps to suggest that a cult of St Edwin was present in Edwinstowe in medieval times, and that the church there was the centre of that cult, most likely due to St Edwin’s body having been buried there following the Battle of Hatfield in 633AD. The paper discusses all the evidence linking Edwin to the area of Sherwood Forest, including to the village of Cuckney where up to 200 skeletons were found in 1951, and suggests the evidence is now overwhelmingly in support of his having died in the area.

The report also gives new theories regarding the origins of St Edwin’s Chapel, as part of the designed medieval romantic Arthurian parkland landscape (identified by Gaunt) surrounding the royal palatial hunting complex of Clipstone.

It also suggests new theories regarding the development of the village of Edwinstowe in Saxon and Medieval times, and suggests that Edwinstowe church may have been an important early Saxon Minster site.

This is potentially of great importance for the local area.

Please see the summary below for an explanation, and the report for a full account of the work and results.

There will be opportunities to be involved in fieldwork in October, at the site of St Edwin’s chapel – researching its origins, and those of the designed landscape- please see forthcoming emails for details of how to be involved.

See the report at:

http://www.mercian-as.co.uk/reports/edwinstowe_church_survey_report_2017.pdf

From the report summary:

Edwinstowe village is the home of the Sherwood Forest National Nature Reserve, and the world famous Major Oak, legendary hideaway of the outlaw Robin Hood. For this association the village, and the wider area of Sherwood Forest are known around the world. Local legend also states that Robin Hood and Maid Marian were married in the village at the church of St Mary.

What is perhaps less well known are the numerous links tying the village of Edwinstowe to the death of the Saxon King Edwin, first Christian King of Northumbria, who was killed at the Battle of Hatfield in the year 633AD. The Battle of Hatfield was fought between the forces of King Edwin of Northumbria on one side, and the combined armies of Penda of the Kingdom of Mercia, and Cadwalla of Gwynedd on the other. The battle saw the Northumbrian’s defeated and King Edwin killed.

The battle is currently associated with the village of Hatfield near
Doncaster. This report builds on the work of previous historians and on recent archaeological projects, to suggest that it is now beyond any reasonable doubt that the Battle of Hatfield and the death of King Edwin of Northumbria happened in the vicinity of Edwinstowe, Nottinghamshire.

A topographic survey of the outline of Edwinstowe church was undertaken by Andy Gaunt and Sean Crossley of Mercian Archaeological Services CIC in June 2017. The survey was undertaken to record terrestrial points in Ordnance Survey datum in order to allow empirical observations to be made regarding the orientation of the church. The results of that survey are presented in this report, alongside astronomical observations and recordings undertaken by Andy Gaunt in relation to the orientation of the church and the horizon as observed from that location.

The results of the topographic survey, combined with satellite acquired Digital Elevation data, for the surrounding landscape show that Edwinstowe church has an orientation at an azimuth of 106.5˚. Astronomical calculations show that this alignment orientates on the local horizon to the sunrise as observed on the 19th October (2017).

In Medieval times dates were calculated using the Julian Calendar. Problems relating to the differences between astronomical time and the way the calendar was calculated, meant that there was a drift of over ten days that had accrued, by the time this was corrected in the 16th century, by the introduction of the Gregorian Calendar. Britain adopted the Gregorian Calendar in the 18th century and by this time the drift had increased to eleven days. Eleven days were therefore added to the Julian Calendar dates to correct the drift (a full description of the date changes and astronomical variations are included in the report methodology section).

However, when searching for possible alignments in a building it is necessary to know when a structure was built. When Britain adopted the Gregorian Calendar, this effectively put the dates back to where they would have been if the Julian Calendar had been correct. However, by the date of construction in the 12th century the calendar had already drifted by seven days. As a result, a building aligned on the 12th of October in the 12th century will have a seven-day variance with the date following the correction, and will therefore align with the 19th October in modern times. The seven days of drift which had accumulated by the 12th century is therefore fossilised in the alignment of the building.

This alignment variation is only in relation to the calendar date, and not to astronomical events themselves. It only affects alignments based on a particular date, such as sunrise on a particular saint day. It does not affect Solstice or Equinox alignments.

The church at Edwinstowe was rebuilt under the orders of Henry II in the year 1175. Astronomical observations show that on the 12th October 1175 the sunrise took place on the local horizon precisely between 106˚-107˚, with the Sun breaking the horizon at 106˚ and clearing the horizon at 107˚

According to Bede, King Edwin was killed at the Battle of Hatfield on 12th October 633, and the Catholic church recognises the saint day of St Edwin as the 12th October.

Local legend states that Edwinstowe church is built on the spot where Edwin’s headless body lay after the battle, his head was later buried in York Minster and his body finally buried at Whitby Abbey. Following his elevation to sainthood the spot where his body had lain became a hallowed place.

In 1381 Richard II granted the right to the villagers of Edwinstowe to hold a vigil and feast on St Edwin’s day. A medieval vigil took place overnight from the preceding day until dawn on the saint’s day, and it is suggested here that the location of the dawn may have played a significant part in the vigil.

Edwinstowe has the meaning ‘Edwin’s Holy Place’. This report suggests that the vigil and saint’s day celebrations seen from the 14th century, combined with the presence of a ‘St Edwin’s chapel’ in the neighbouring parish of Clipstone; provides evidence of a medieval cult of St Edwin local to the area around Edwinstowe. For the orientation of the church on the sunrise of St Edwin’s saint’s day of 12th October, when the church was rebuilt in the year 1175, in the village bearing his name, and where there appears to be a medieval cult with a tradition of vigil observation and saint day feasting, to be anything other than deliberate seems somewhat unlikely.

Searching for the alignment of churches and their relationships to saints’ days and/or other celebrations such as Easter is often plagued with difficulties, due to not knowing the actual date of construction, and with no definitive date for the endowment of a church with its saint. In this instance, the church is dedicated to St Mary, but the saint day in question is not for the saint to which the church is dedicated in the medieval period. It is for St Edwin, not St Mary. The likelihood is that the association with Saint Edwin dates back to before the building of the current church and the dedication of that church to St Mary.

The link with St Edwin is believed to date back to at least the origin of the place-name of Edwinstowe in the Saxon period (certainly pre-Domesday 1086, and the preceding Norman Conquest of 1066).

Domesday lists a preceding church, and this report hypothesises that if the orientation is deliberate, then the preceding Saxon church may also have had an orientation of 106.5 ˚ azimuth. Calculations show that the same alignment was certainly correct back to at least circa 1000AD.

Earlier than this time the orientation, if deliberate, may have been slightly further to the north as circa 633AD the dawn was observed at 104˚-105˚. This was also due to the Julian Calendar drift problem. It is suggested that orientation of the church may have been slightly altered over time as the angle of the sunrise gradually shifted to the angle seen, and preserved by the rebuild of the church in stone in the year 1175.

Reports of the monks of Hexham observing a vigil and sunrise at the site of the battle of Heavenfield in relation to the death of Edwin’s nephew St Oswald, provide near contemporary 7th century evidence suggesting that the observance of overnight vigils was prevalent around the time of Edwin’s death. This could support the idea of a 7th century origin for the activity of orientation on, and observation of the sunrise at Edwinstowe back to the time immediately following the death of King Edwin as the battle of Hatfield in 633AD.

Place-name evidence linking the Battle of Hatfield to the area around Edwinstowe, and archaeological investigations relating to the discovery of possible mass-burial pits under the church in nearby village of Cuckney (which are being investigated by the Battle of Hatfield Investigation Society alongside Mercian Archaeological Services CIC) are discussed and add further weight to the link of King Edwin and the Battle of Hatfield to the local area.

With the centre of the cult of St Edwin focusing on Edwinstowe church, an alternative origin for the chapel of St Edwin located in the neighbouring lordship of Clipstone, and endowed by King John in 1205, is presented. It is suggested here for the first time that the chapel of St Edwin originated as part of the newly-emerging designed landscape of Clipstone, first interpreted by Gaunt (Gaunt 2011).

Chapels and hermitages, as well as performing a religious role, were also an important ingredient in Arthurian and other romance literature of the day and formed a common element in designed romantic hunting landscapes. By linking to the local legend and cult of St Edwin the chapel would have been an expression of piety, but would also have had a special level of romance that resonated from the site and the association.

It is suggested here that the Chapel of St Edwin is one such parkland chapel, founded to reference the local cult of St Edwin, and that this suggests a deliberate romantic theme. It also takes elements of the origin of the designed romantic Arthurian landscape of Clipstone back to the late 12th to early 13th century, which included the formation of the Deer Park and Great Pond of Clipstone in the later 12th century.

The linking of the chapel to St Edwin of Northumbria, by the Kings at Clipstone, strengthens greatly the probability of a local cult of St Edwin, centred on Edwinstowe. This helps to bridge the gap between the 1381 reference to the vigil and saint day feast in the village, and the rebuilding of the church in 1175 (which orientates with Edwin’s saint’s day sunrise).

Further to the above is the presence of a church in Edwinstowe in the Domesday Book. This church and its medieval parish (which covered much of the surrounding villages and landscape) could represent the fossilisation of an early minster site at Edwinstowe (due to its early importance and direct links to St Edwin of Northumbria).

All this evidence combined makes it almost certain that Edwinstowe was the home to a medieval cult centred on St Edwin, whose former life as King Edwin of Northumbria came to an end near Edwinstowe in the year 633AD.

As mentioned above local legend states that Edwinstowe church is built on the spot where Edwin’s headless body lay after the Battle of Hatfield, and, following his elevation to sainthood the spot where his body had lain became a hallowed place. The Battle of Hatfield was fought between the forces of Edwin of Northumbria on one side, and the combined armies of Penda of the Kingdom of Mercia, and Cadwalla of Gwynedd on the other. The battle saw the Northumbrian’s defeated and King Edwin killed.

It is just possible that the church in Edwinstowe and its original orientation on the sunrise on his saint’s day on 12th October is in fact a very visible reminder of King Edwin of Northumbria (later St Edwin) and his death at the Battle of Hatfield in the vicinity of Edwinstowe in the 7th century.

When research is centred and rooted in a locale it really can begin to bring forward exciting discoveries.

This project has emerged from a combination of many of the different projects that Mercian Archaeological Services CIC are undertaking in Sherwood Forest (many of them involving the public and archaeological community volunteers) including our work at King John’s Palace, Cuckney village and the Battle of Hatfield related research going on there, Edwinstowe Village (Mercian’s Robin Hood’s Village Dig), and our ongoing research at the site of St Edwin’s Chapel.

It is only through such long-term sustainable, community-driven research that discoveries of this kind can emerge.

We hope you enjoy reading the report, and hope to see you at the upcoming fieldwork opportunities.

Best wishes and kind regards,

Andy, Sean, and David.
Directors
Mercian Archaeological Services CIC

Topographic Survey at the site of Clipstone Peel in Sherwood Forest

We are pleased to announce an upcoming opportunity to be involved in a Topographic Survey at the site of Clipstone Peel in Sherwood Forest, the site of Edward II’s fortified stockade on the western edge of the former royal deer park at Clipstone.

Mercian are undertaking long term research at the site of King John’s Palace in Clipstone, and in the surrounding landscape. This survey is the first part of more upcoming work at the site planned for the coming months as part of the Sherwood Forest Archaeology Project.

The survey will take place on the 12th, 13th and (Saturday) 14th of October, 2017.

You can book your place at £30 per day: http://mercian-as.co.uk/intro_days.html#topodays

Topographic Survey:

In archaeology the ability to measure the location of a site, artefact, or earthwork is essential. Come and measure accurate points to record archaeological sites and their features, and help to understand them in their landscape.

The site:

Clipstone Peel was a fortified timber stronghold built on the orders of King Edward II in 1316. It consisted of a gatehouse, hall, royal chamber, chapel, bakehouse, kitchen, grange and sheds, for cattle, oxen and sheep (Crook 1976).

The site provided a fortified stronghold for Edward II while he stayed at Clipstone, and helped ensure the royal entourage had sufficient provisions. It offered a secure location during a time of strife following the loss of Scotland at the Battle of Bannockburn, and during Edward’s troubles with the Earl of Lancaster.

Be among the first people to ever systematically survey this important royal medieval site in Sherwood Forest…

The site is near to King’s Clipstone, and a map of where to meet will be sent with more details after you book your place.

We really hope to see you there for what promises to be a really interesting fieldwork opportunity!

Best wishes,

Andy, Sean and David
Directors,
Mercian Archaeological Services CIC

Geophysical Magnetometer Survey at the site of St Edwin’s Chapel in Sherwood Forest.


Come and survey the site of the legendary St Edwin’s Chapel, one of the most important medieval sites in Sherwood Forest.Help to research if the chapel marks the resting place of a saint, or if it was a chapel built as part of a designed romantic medieval parkland landscape…

The survey will take place on the 19th, 20th and (Saturday) 21st October, 2017.

You can book your place at £35 per day: http://mercian-as.co.uk/intro_days.html#magnetometer

King Edwin, the first Christian King of Northumbria, was killed in the year 633AD at the Battle of Hatfield somewhere in the area that later became Sherwood Forest, Nottinghamshire.

Help investigate if this site commemorates the place where Edwin’s body lay after his death, or if is a medieval chapel founded as part of the designed Arthurian parkland hunting landscape of the medieval palace of Clipstone. Is it a saint’s resting place or is it part of a later cult of Edwin, set in a designed landscape?

Survey the site of the chapel, and the surrounding area for Medieval, Saxon and even Roman occupation…

This is a real hands-on practical learning experience where you will undertake the survey yourself of this important archaeological and historic site, under expert supervision.

In 2011 Andy Gaunt identified the landscape of medieval Clipstone as a designed medieval landscape, which fulfilled a romantic ideal as seen in Arthurian legend (citing at that time the poem of Sir Gawain and the Green Knight as an example).

Mercian have been continuing to investigate the designed landscape of Clipstone, and have undertaken previous work at the site of St Edwin’s Chapel which has hinted at a 12th-13th century origin for the chapel.

Recent fieldwork by Mercian at Edwinstowe church has suggested that Edwinstowe was the centre of a medieval cult of St Edwin, with the church there having an orientation on the sunrise on St Edwin’s saints day: http://www.mercian-as.co.uk/reports/edwinstowe_church_survey_report_2017.pdf

The research has also suggested that St Edwin’s Chapel was created as part of the emerging designed Arthurian style landscape in the late 12th and early 13th century.

This project will continue ongoing investigations into the designed landscape of Clipstone, and the origin of St Edwin’s Chapel.

The site is near to King’s Clipstone, and a map of where to meet will be sent with more details after you book your place.

We really hope to see you there for what promises to be a really interesting fieldwork opportunity!

Best wishes,

Andy, Sean and David
Directors,
Mercian Archaeological Services CIC

Secret Beeston

Secret Beeston By Frank E. Earp and Joseph Earp
ISBN 978-1-4456-64880-0
96 Pages
Price £14.99
Published by Amberley Publishing, 15/08/2017

In this well researched and comprehensive review of history, buildings, landmarks, residents and famous visitors Frank and Joseph Earp provide a fascinating insight into life and times in Beeston starting with a review of the origins of the name and ending with a photographic tour round the town. The book is a mixture of a town guide, a historical review and a ‘Did you know’ and, in 13 short and well written sections, covers pretty much all there is to know. It is a book for anyone interested in local or urban history, or the development of 19th century industry or popular culture and entertainment but it is primarily for anyone interested in the area. It is richly illustrated with many historical photographs as well as current examples from the authors own private collection and contains a wealth of information about famous and not-so-famous Beeston people. A particular strength of the book is that it provides a photographic record of the significant buildings of the town; factories, churches, shops and pubs, and places them all within the context of growth and change. It also catalogues the individuals and families, residents and visitors, who enriched the life of the town, many of them recorded on blue plaques. This is an interesting and eminently readable book and a welcome addition to the body of work on the local history of Beeston and Nottingham.

After this there can’t be much about Beeston that is still secret!

Celebrating the 200th Anniversary of the Mansfield to Pinxton Railway Line

This train line, of which a good portion is now incorporated into the Robin Hood Train line (Mansfield to Kirkby) was opened in 1819 and as such is possibly the oldest continually running line in England. We therefore feel it important to celebrate this fact and involve as many relevant people and organisations as possible. This proposed project aims to research and promote this train line and anniversary and would like your organisation to join with us for this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.

After many years of debate of how to connect Mansfield to the growing network of canals it was finally decided to make that connection via rail to the Cromford Canal at Pinxton, rather than constructing a new canal. Work commenced on the rail in 1817 and concluded in 1819, when it opened for business on Easter Tuesday. Initially it was used to transport heavy goods, such as coal into Mansfield and stone, sand and malt out of the town. As the years went by passenger travel was introduced. The early trucks were pulled by horses but, when fully laden, there was sufficient momentum generated for the trucks to propel themselves from The Summit, at Kirkby, into Mansfield town centre.

Several years after the construction of this line, steam locomotives were developed with a subsequent network of railway lines being built across the country. Now it became the turn of Mansfield to be connected to this new network. The Mansfield-Pinxton line was purchased by the Midland Railway Company, upgraded and extended into Nottingham in the late 1840s, where it joined the main network. Steam locomotives were introduced on to this upgraded line and continued to transport goods and passengers until they were superseded by diesel power. However, during the mid-1960s the passenger services were withdrawn but goods continued to be transported.

Fortunately, as the commercial side of transportation started to decline the passenger service was re-introduced. This continued use of the train line therefore makes it one of the oldest continuously running lines in the United Kingdom and possibly the oldest in England.

The Project Partnership

The partnership consists of the following local organisations and several dedicated individuals:

  • Dedicated Individuals
  • Kirkby & District Archaeological Group
  • Old Mansfield Society
  • Pinxton & South Normanton Local History Society
  • Sutton Heritage Society

The Project

As can be seen from the above historic overview, the Mansfield to Pinxton railway is one of national significance and consequently this important milestone needs to be celebrated. Therefore, the partnership will ensure that the heritage of this train line is celebrated and remembered. We propose to:

  1. Carry out further research to:
    1. Bring it’s known history up to date (The full 200 years)
    2. Write a celebratory leaflet (including a map and timeline)
    3. Write a booklet
    4. Create a website and post all material on to the internet
    5. Produce a mobile exhibition
    6. Compile an education pack
    7. Film a celebratory video
    8. We aim to install permanent interpretation panels at:
    9. Mansfield Train Station
    10. Sutton Parkway Train Station
    11. Kirkby Aldi
    12. Pinxton Wharf
  2. Write and perform a dedicated play
  3. Produce a three-dimensional model of the train line and rolling stock
  4. Hold public events to celebrate the anniversary, including:
    1. Major event on the actual day (17th April 2019)
    2. Launch event for the leaflet and booklet
    3. Public competitions
    4. Guided walks
    5. Talks/presentations
  5. Archaeological Research, to:
    1. Understand how the original track-bed was constructed
    2. Map out the exact route of the original train line
  6. Produce celebratory memorabilia (still to be determined but may include):
    1. Plate
    2. Mug
    3. Stationery
  7. As part of the project we aim to involve the following people and organisations:
    1. All local authorities
    2. Train companies
    3. Schools & college
    4. Public
    5. MP’s
    6. Media (including radio and TV)
    7. Place articles in relevant magazines

Volunteers in the project will receive professional training, where needed.

We aim to have funding and relevant permissions in place by June 2018 to give us plenty of time to organise the Grand Celebration. However, all the above activities and aims won’t be completed until September 2020.

More information from Trevor Lewis, (Secretary, Steering Group), Mansfield – Pinxton Bi-Centennial Celebration Project at trevorandpam@gmail.com

Tinsley’s Barn & St Mary Magdalene opened 10am – 5pm Saturday 9th September 2017

Our first Heritage Open Day Trail (admittedly only two venues, Tinsley’s Barn and St Mary Magdalene, but that made a trail! ) were open on Saturday 9th September.

St Mary Magdalene (C14th Grade I Listed Building) was also open for Ride & Stride as was All Saints, Stanton-on-the-Wolds and Keyworth Methodist Church.

St MM offered refreshments; the cakes were delicious….

Tinsley’s Barn (Grade II Listed Building) opened for the first time for HODs, Graham & Pippa have recently restored this building and kindly invited K&DLHS and CAAG to put on displays for visitors.

80 people visited Tinsley’s Barn steadily throughout the day;

Sue Buckby from St MM said “We are so pleased all went well yesterday and people came to see both our buildings.  We had 32 visitors but only 8 with the ride and stride, but that was well worth being open for”.

Carriage 946 Ruddington Heritage Centre

Call to the surviving families of GCR casualties of WW1

An original 1888 fully-restored original GCR carriage, in a special Commemoration ceremony on Sunday 17th September 2017, is to be dedicated at Ruddington Heritage Centre, to the hundreds of employees who left the Great Central Railway to join the conflict in the Great War (1914-1918) but failed to return home.

“The carriage is again becoming a moving Memorial to the fallen in that devastating war of attrition that affected so deeply almost every family is the land,” says Roger Penson, Executive Trustee of the owning organisation, the GCR Rolling Stock Trust.

The event is to be honoured by The Deputy Lord Lieutenant Col. Roger Merryweather DL and Lt Col. Darren Woods RE, Commanding Officer of the East Midlands Army Reserve Centre; as well as leading County citizens.

“We are hoping that as many families as possible descended from those who died, failed to come home or were severely injured will come to the Heritage Centre to join this very special tribute”.

Please be sure to tell us you will be there – and be present from 2 o’clock when the RH Cadet Corps of Drums and Bugles leads the Parade salute.  To register your interest in this event, please email: gcrrollingstocktrust@live.co.uk

“It is to be a GCR-themed Come-and-See event on Sunday 17 September, especially for Members of the Great Central Railway Society and as many GCR enthusiast friends as possible.” announces Roger Penson, Executive Trustee of GCR Rolling Stock Trust.

“All GCR enthusiasts are welcome – but the first 50 GCRS members on site will not only be able to inspect the GCR Rolling Stock Trust’s work on its fleet of original GCR carriages but also have a free ticket to ride over the GCRN tracks from Ruddington Fields to Loughborough (Brush Works) and back.  There’s incentive!”

In pride of place at the Heritage Centre at Ruddington will be the newly restored and gleaming MS&LR 6-wheel carriage on display and in the open for the first time. This vehicle has been dedicated to those 225 troops of The Royal Scots Regiment who perished in a similar type of carriage in the worst-ever rail disaster in 1915 at Quintinshill.

Now for the treat……For a modest donation there will be a draw for the first 20 seats being offered for the first VIP public outing in the Spring, to be launched on GCR London Extension metals. “Also on view we will have numerous displays on the former Great Central Railway theme and this will be taken up by the offering of visits to the GCR stock of Barnums, the chosen Suburban carriage being converted to a vital stores van, especially the Barnum no 228 which is already part restored and heavily researched.  Progress on the new GCR Museum build at Leicester North we hope will be revealed.”

Expected on site will be GCR locomotives and stock in the numerous gauges – run by the NSMEE and the Model Railway Club – and an update on the progress of the MS&LR 4-4-0 tender locomotive being recreated by the 567 Locomotive Group.  Gates open at 10.00 hours. Roger says: “Please come and enjoy the day with us.”

Here are the details of the GCR Nottingham programme – thanks to the invaluable support of GCRN, our hosts:

10.00 – Gates open – Check-in at Entrance Marquee

11.00 – Reveal of the restored MS&LR no 946. Access platform for visitors.

12.00 – Welcome to RST members and GCRS and Light buffet in Marquee on Station Concourse.  And special brew real ale

13.00 – Take GCRN Steam return service from Platform no.1 – First 50 to sign in go free!

14.15 – Tour GCR themed site – Barnums (featuring research, seat model) and RST stock on view, reveal no.799 conversion, Building no.4 (new Carriage Shed), NSMEE, 567 Locomotive Group and Model Railway Club Displays

14.30 – Commemoration of no.946 to GCR Employees who fell in the Great War 1914-1918

16.00 – Tea/coffee – Reveal of winner of John Quick’s Prize GCR Quiz – programme end.