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News from Rutland and Lincolnshire’s past held in the Stamford Mercury archive





10 years ago

New team to greet bus passengers

Coach visitors to Stamford will now be greeted at the bus station by the new team of Stamford Ambassadors.

Roger Bradshaw and Christine Bradshaw, members of Stamford Ambassadors team, 10 years ago.
Roger Bradshaw and Christine Bradshaw, members of Stamford Ambassadors team, 10 years ago.

Working in pairs, the ambassadors will be wearing Georgian costumes, in harmony with Stamford's image as a Georgian town.

Stamford Town Team, which was set up to boost town centre trade is behind the idea. Chairman of Stamford Town Team Tim Lee said: Many visitors to Stamford arrive at the bus station.

Creative minds come together for new project

More than 70 people put on their thinking caps to get creative and help with a new art project.

Left to right: Dora Cooper, Mayor Adam Lowe, Peter Lawson, Monica Fernandez and Vicky Baddeley 10 years ago.
Left to right: Dora Cooper, Mayor Adam Lowe, Peter Lawson, Monica Fernandez and Vicky Baddeley 10 years ago.

The launch event for the Now Then mural scheme in Oakham was held at the Victoria Hall on Saturday.

Scores of people turned out to offer their photographs, stories and views of the town for the new mural which will be displayed on the wall at the Co-operative Funeralcare in Gaol Street.

The project will celebrate the industrial heritage of the site and is being led by artist Monica Fernandez, who lives in the town.

She said: "The highlight of the event was meeting Mr and Mrs Marlow who contributed to the project with an invaluable archive of pictures of Oakham, including a shot of the mural site from the 1950s.

“Their collection revealed the site of the future mural was the jail of Oakham in the late 19th century.

"They even had the original copies of prisoner's sentences in 1870. When people like this take action, they bring the project to its popular splendour."

Now Then is being mainly funded by Arts Council England, Oakham Town Council, Rutland County Council and The Midlands Co-operative.

Energy officer is a Heat Hero

Fiona Moore, energy officer for Energy Action for Rutland, was named a national Heat Hero by fuel poverty charity National Energy Action for her contribution to tackling fuel poverty in Rutland.

Fiona Moore (middle) with Neil Clitheroe, CEO of Scottish Power (left) and Baroness Verma, parliamentary under secretary of state (right) 10 years ago.
Fiona Moore (middle) with Neil Clitheroe, CEO of Scottish Power (left) and Baroness Verma, parliamentary under secretary of state (right) 10 years ago.

The Heat Hero Award Scheme recognises individuals who have gone above and beyond in helping people who are living in fuel poverty.

Fiona, pictured right, with Neil Clithere, CEO of Scottish Power and Baroness Verma, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State, works for the Energy Action for Rutland project, delivering energy audits across the county and giving residents advice on how to improve the energy efficiency of the crime.

Adventurous cat reunited with owners

An adventurous cat who went missing from his home had his sights set on being king of the castle before being reunited with his owners.

Roger the cat with owners Tim and Joe 10 years ago.
Roger the cat with owners Tim and Joe 10 years ago.

Oakham couple Tim Shears and Jo Eckersly put up posters around the town for the return of their striking Siamese cat Roger after they noticed he was gone from their home in High Street on Tuesday last week.

They also knocked on neighbours doors and were fearing the worst when he still had not shown up by Friday morning.

But on Friday evening they had a call from a couple who said they had spotted one-year-old Roger wandering in the grounds of Oakham castle.

Tim, 55, said: Jo was beside herself when she realised she was gone. We asked around the town but no one had seen him.

“He’s so striking to look at and we thought he might have been stolen.

“But then we had a call about 7pm on Friday from a couple to say they had seen him walking around the grounds of the castle.

“I was eating a pizza at the time but we dropped everything to rush out to see if it was him.

“Jo called out his name when we got to the castle and he came running over to us.

“She picked him up straight away and gave him a big cuddle. It was very emotional. We thought we weren’t going to see him again.

“He obviously wanted to do a bit of sightseeing.”

The couple believe he may have been scared by cars at the back of their home which made him run across Church Street. They said it was odd behaviour as he only has a small territory and is quite a shy cat.

Pyjama day for primary school pupils

Bourne Abbey Primary Academy youngsters wore onesies or pyjamas as a way of saying “It’s alright to be different” to show their support for World Autism Day.

Bourne Abbey Primary Academy pupils 10 years ago.
Bourne Abbey Primary Academy pupils 10 years ago.

Special assemblies were held all week, including video clips being shown to boost the pupils’ awareness and understanding of autism.

More than £200 was raised and donated to the National Autistic Society, the leading UK charity for people with autism.

25 years ago

Scout jamboree was a success

Quad biking, traditional games and a grand draw all helped to make the 1st Corby Glen Scout jamboree a success on Friday.

1st Corby Glen Scouts left to right: Jonathan Bakers, James Harrison, Anthony Wollerton and Henry Young 25 years ago.
1st Corby Glen Scouts left to right: Jonathan Bakers, James Harrison, Anthony Wollerton and Henry Young 25 years ago.

Group administrator Mike Newman said the jamboree, at the Ron Dawson Memorial Hall in the village had helped to raise more than £1,000.

The money will be used to buy a new trailer to transport the Scouts' camping equipment about when they go on trips.

Mr Newman said: "It was a lousy afternoon but the weather cleared up in the evening and we had a football tournament for all ages, boys, girls and mums."

He said the grand draw was won by Call Musson who immediately handed back £30 of her £50 win to the scouts' fund.

New uniforms for taxi drivers

A taxi company from Morton has kitted out its drivers in identical red polo shirts so its customers can get to know them by name.

Left to right: Glen McDougal, Keith Hudson, Bill Born and Kim Born of B&K Taxis 25 years ago.
Left to right: Glen McDougal, Keith Hudson, Bill Born and Kim Born of B&K Taxis 25 years ago.

Kim Born (38) who is the radio controller of B&K Taxis, said: "We decided to do it so that passengers can really get to know "We are already known for our friendliness as a company and we hope the polo shirt idea helps this along."

Kim set up the company with her husband Bill (55) last Septem-Bill, who had driven for a number of years for a taxi company based in Bourne, now employs cabbies Glen McDougal and Keith Hudson who put in the miles for B&K.

The company, which began with a lone red Sierra has steadily grown. Kim added: "We are hoping to get a fourth car on the road by July, but we don’t want to grow too much.

“We always run very clean cars and try to keep our fares low.”

Kim, who is originally from Plymouth, moved to Morton to be with Bill.

They are now married and have two children, William (2) and Rebecca (4).

Estate agency named the best for second time

Radford and Bingley Frank Innes in Stamford has, for the second year running, been voted the best estate agency office in a prestigious competition.

Award-winning Bradford and Bingley staff who were on a roll with their charity bed push 25 years ago.
Award-winning Bradford and Bingley staff who were on a roll with their charity bed push 25 years ago.

The office beat off stiff competition to scoop the award for the East Anglian region for the Nationwide Estate Agency Office of the Year Awards.

The annual awards, which are sponsored by the Nationwide Building Society in association with the National Association of Estate Agents, are based on nominations made by the house buying and renting public over the last 12 months.

Thousands of nominations were received from customers from all over the country. Customers were asked to rate the branches on a number of factors ranging from professionalism and levels of service to office presentation.

These nominations were then researched and supported by a team of mystery shoppers who called and assessed the performance of the offices.

Mark Rice, branch manager said: "To be the regional winner is a fantastic escalade for us and we are delighted. I believe it is our commitment to excellent service and our comprehensive staff training programme which has contributed to us winning this award."

Handmade card business flourishes

When housewife Josephine Wilds sent a handmade Christmas card to her friend and neighbour Mandy Barnes she had no idea of the reaction it would bring - Mandy rushed around to her Greatford home and asked her to start a business.

Josephine Wilds (left) and Mandy Barnes (right) busy working on their designs 25 years ago.
Josephine Wilds (left) and Mandy Barnes (right) busy working on their designs 25 years ago.

That was last year. Now the pair and their successful business - Wildfire Designs - will be showing their hand-made giftware at the craft fair being held at Burghley House, Stamford, this bank holiday weekend (May 29-31).

Mandy, who has three children at school, was teaching at Casterton, near Stamford, when the idea for the business bloomed. She said: "I had always thought about starting a giftware business and when I saw Josephine's superb hand-made Christmas card, I knew then that we had the basis for a successful partnership."

The pair specialise in hand-made greetings cards inspired by Josephine's designs but they also produce a wide range of hand-panted giftware items such as terracotta pots and glassware.

At first they sold the items they had made to friends, neighbours and colleagues but slowly demand for their products grew and so did the range of handmade giftware they’re producing.

“We are able to produce handmade gifts for special occasions such as weddings, christenings and anniversaries,” said Josephine, a mother of three grown up children.

“However, people seem to like our personalised greeting cards, in particular and demand for them has been growing steadily.”

50 years ago

Stamford people are to be urged to sign a massive rate protest petition organised by town traders. The idea is the brainchild of Stamford Chamber of Trade, who are businessmen, and are facing increased rates of 80 per cent.

100 years ago

Sunday Music - The Stamford Town Prize Silver Band had two pleasing concerts in the grounds of Coun. F. Carter, Greyfriars, St Paul’s Street, on Sunday.

Considering the weather, there were fair attendances. The band gave pleasing items at both concerns and well merited the applause accorded them after each selection. The proceeds are to be devoted to the new instrument fund.

150 years ago

On Tuesday W. M. Eayers, a brewer's assistant in the employ of Mr. H. Whincup, was engaged in whitewashing the walls of the brewhouse, when the steps on which he was standing gave way and he fell to the ground, fracturing two ribs and otherwise injuring himself.

200 years ago

Manchester House, High Street, Stamford, deservedly distinguished as the cheapest and most fashionable Drapery Depot in the kingdom.

The reason it is so patronised is that the articles combine cheapness and durability.

It is also well known by the numerous friends of T. Beasley and by the public, that he ever deals fairly and honourably, and never warrants any article unless of the best quality.

From the rapid sale he effects, his stock is always of the newest manufacture and fashion. These and many other causes may be assigned for this establishment having the decided preference of those who study economy, taste, and fashion.



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