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Exec meeting June 2022
Minutes of meeting


Horncastle History & Heritage Society – Minutes of a Meeting of the Executive Committee held 3pm on Tuesday 21st June 2022 at the Joseph Banks Centre, Horncastle

Present:         Ian Marshman (IM) Chairman, Mary Silverton (MS), Nick Fox (NF),
Ros Rickard (RR), Kev Woodward (KW) and Julie Bates (JB)


Apologies:    Michael Hiatt (MH), Ian French (IF) and Trevor Butterworth (TB)

Item 1.                        Apologies for Absence


IM accepted apologies from those members detailed above.


Item 2.                        Approval of Executive Minutes 03/05/22


Minutes of the previous meeting were accepted as an accurate reflection of what took place.


Item 3.                        Matters Arising


03/05/22  Item 4:     Mural Painting: IM had watched the mural being painted and everyone there seemed to be enjoying themselves.  All agreed that the mural looks quite good, much better than any of us anticipated and there have been a number of positive comments.  There has however been questions raised as to why this money has been spent painting the exterior of the toilets whilst the interior is well overdue an overhaul.  IM wished to make clear that the funding was specifically for an arts project but that he understood ELDC’s estates department were intending to fix a number of issues with the interior of the public toilet facilities.


03/05/22 Item 4:      MS has had a disappointing response from members about the proposed guided tour of the old town in Hull  which the Hull Civic Society has offered to give our members.  For those that have expressed an interest she will now perhaps to try and arrange the visit for a date in September but pointed out that she will only be able to make basic arrangements, nothing too complicated.  She will seek out a possible date with Hull Civic Society and circulate the details but this will still rely on a sufficient number of members taking up this opportunity.



Item 4.                        Correspondence


Brownies:  IM advised that the 3rd Horncastle Brownies had visited the Archive on 9th May and then enjoyed the ‘I Spy’ walk though there were quite a lot of them and IM had been worried about congestion on some of the narrow pavements.  The Brownies had sent a lovely thank you card saying that their visit had helped them to get their history badge, enclosing a very welcome donation of £50.  It was understood they wished to repeat the visit in the future.


Stickford History Group:  IM had arranged to give the Group a tour of the Roman wall as a thank you for their donation towards restoration work on the Roman Wall.  They will meet outside the Library at 12.30 this Thursday 23rd June.  NF will be at the JBC on Thursday morning and will arrange for the Roman Wall information to be on one of the electronic screens as these had been changed by JBC.


Land adjoining the Youth Centre: During a Jubilee Committee meeting discussing street parties, it had occurred to IM that this area was part of the parcel of land the Council were

intending to sell with the Youth Centre/Cagthorpe School building but, whoever buys the Youth Centre, would never be able to build on this section of land as it is designated as a green space in Neighbourhood Plan and ELDC’s Local Plan.  He felt it would be better if this land was given to the Town Council rather than being sold off and simply fenced off by the new owner – no use to them and a loss to local residents.  IM had suggested this to County Councillor William Gray and with the Town Council, who said they would make enquiries although the Town Council did not want to commit to take it on without more discussion.


Item 5.                       Finance


MS advised the balance as of 27th May was £20,770.40 which included the £10k grant towards the Jubilee fund, of which £2,600 was paid out immediately to the Trade Association to run the Sunday Party in the Square event, but the Beacon at Scrivelsby and our own receipts were going through separately meaning lots of cheques being signed off at the moment.

The Auditor has now signed off the accounts.  Membership money is coming in but very slow.  RR will try to chase those Standing Orders which are out of date and not paying the current membership amount as well as those who are not able to pay by Standing Order and who’s membership payment has not yet been received.  It would be helpful if those paying by Standing Order could check they are paying the correct amount of £12.00 individual membership or  £15.00 family membership and please accept advance apologies if you are chased in error! 


Item 6.                       Planning Report


MH was unable to attend the meeting but kindly provided a brief report to the meeting as follows:-

(i) Western half of Friskney's Site (West Street) re demolition of existing brick/pan tiled store houses, re-cladding in blue and yellow etc: Application Withdrawn.


            (ii) Friskney's Site (Eastern half): Refurbishing work in progress.


(iii) Mountview Garage (17, Lincoln Road): modernisation of filling station, including demolition of existing house and construction of convenience store: Approved subject to 5 pages of conditions (including some points raised by HHHS comments).


(iv) Refurbishment of stables behind 21, High Street: Work progressing well, however the colour of the external walls paint is yellow/blue/pink not "white to match existing" as indicated on the approved/as submitted drawings. Formal query raised with Planning Department. The painted colours clash with the existing street scene (although rather modest compared to St Lawrence Street convenience street art!). The Committee felt that the colours did brighten up this corner of the town, and a lot of people were saying how much they liked them. It was agreed that we may not want to object too strongly on this, although it was evidently not what that original application had said so it will be interesting to see what ELDC say about it.


(v) 3-5 Bridge Street: New application received for 2No one bedroom brick/pitched roofed maisonettes in place of the single storey restaurant flat roofed extension. No objection to the general principal but questions concerning detail/interaction with neighbouring properties.



(vi) Langton Hill (field below Woodhall Spa road): Noted that large off-road dump truck parked in field. To be investigated.


Following the AGM two members have shown an interest in helping MH with the Planning Section and will be introduced to the system in the next few weeks.



Item 7.                       Report on Queen’s Platinum Jubilee


NF circulated a report on visitor numbers to the JBC over the four day period.  A lot of good positive feedback, especially for the photo boards which had evoked lots of memories by visitors.  It had been an achievement obtaining a picture to cover every year of the Queen’s reign and our thanks to everyone who contributed to this project.  NF commended IM on his idea for both the picture boards and the postcards which were very popular as many visitors found themselves on some of the cards so were thrilled to be able to send these to their friends and family.  As we couldn’t charge for the postcards NF had placed a donations box with them which raised over £50.  NF felt we could perhaps be more inventive as to where we place donation boxes.  The swipe card (electronic donation) system at the entrance/exit isn’t very obvious and needs to be made more visible somehow but he felt that placing donation boxes in  strategic places, as he had done with the postcards, could result in much needed donations. The Ichthyosaur ‘sea monster’ fossils still get a lot of interest as do the various Joseph Banks displays.

MS wanted to give a big thank you to Jean Forgham and Barbara Backhouse as well as Ken and Vaughan for all their help setting up the chocolate tombola stall.  MS was amazed at how popular the stall was – she had thought they would be there until the early evening but all the chocolate had gone within two hours.  £278 was raised and thanks go to everyone who kindly donated chocolate.


IM pointed out that we had applied for the £10k grant on behalf of the town’ jubilee committee and whilst some of this money enabled us to fund the photo boards and postcards, most of the money was earmarked towards other projects, in particular the beacon lighting and enchanted park on Thursday evening at Scrivelsby, and the Party in the Square (organised by Horncastle Trade Association) which was sadly disrupted by rain on the Sunday. MS said the Thursday night was amazing, the only negative comment being queues for the bar!  There were double the number of people than those attending the last event held there.  530 cars had paid for entry but this did not include the band and their families etc and IM estimated between 1.5 – 2k people.  The Cadets were helping with parking and the Lions in charge of sausages (over 700 were sold!).  The fireworks were spectacular and went on for ages and the Houses of Light in the wood were magical when they were lit up after dark.  The willow houses had been funded with our grant and were made by GCSE and A Level Art students from QEGS, residents from Netherlands Care Home on Spilsby Road and families at a community workshop. It had also funded the artists to work with visitors on the night to make little illuminated paper boats.  This also funded the lion fire sculpture and the magical lighting of the trees in the parkland, Banovallum Brass, and Two of Harps, whilst the Town Council paid for the ukulele duo Outdoor Cats.

Once we have paid out everything we have committed to there was £485.72 not yet allocated and IM had thought about perhaps creating some commemorative booklets incorporating the 70 photos from the Peoples History in Photos exhibition. We wouldn’t be able to make a charge for the booklets but, like with the postcards, could encourage donations.  IM had an A5 booklet in mind, probably a maximum of 40 pages, 350 copies would cost £482.99.  NF asked if we could put some of the money towards reprinting the popular Horncastle History Hunters Trail leaflets which had almost run out but MS said this would come out of our own funds.

MS had overheard comments from visitors and also from her extended family remarking on how much was going on here compared to where they lived.  IM added that considering how late we had been in starting to make plans the town managed to put on an excellent show and expressed huge thanks to everyone that got involved.  All so very British, even down to the authentic British mini which had to be pushed all way round the parade – it apparently started first time the following day!


Item 8.                        Plans for the Society Year Ahead Post AGM


IM explained that following the AGM it would be good to consider what the Society’s priorities would be for our year ahead. There were lots of different projects being proposed in the town and IM had been representing the Society on all the different committees and was finding it increasingly difficult to accommodate the different meetings, sometimes 3 per week during his working day. It was hoped that members might like to get involved in some of the projects, all of which will be excellent for the town, so that IM does not necessarily need to represent the Society at every meeting.


Public Art - Since the mural on St Lawrence Street has been finished, there has been strong support from councillors who after realising what good value it was (£3,000 all in, including two events on the market, a training event for young people, and then 3 days of painting) they are now keen to do more public art which has long been one of the Society’s goals. So it was now proposed that the mural working group continue as a Horncastle public art group to develop more plans. The group currently consisted of IM, Jade from Lincolnshire Wildlife Trust, Sam Philips from ELDC, Rev Charles Patrick (St Mary’s Church), and Cllr Fiona Martin. RR said she would speak to the Horncastle Art Group. We had also been invited to share the Society’s previous ideas for public artworks in the town, which IM had done. He added that it was only sad that David Lawrence who had been so passionate about public art in Horncastle no longer lived locally to see his ideas come to pass.


Churchyard Landscape Project – IM had been informed that the Friends of St Mary’s Church together with the church and the Community Centre were developing a major project to enhance the churchyard and community centre garden to create a much more attractive public open space as a green lung for the town. Rev Charles’ brother has been involved in the Cathedral Connected programme that has done something similar on the north side of the cathedral and is going to be involved in developing ideas. IM had been asked to help with this, although it was hoped that MH might be able to keep HHHS in the loop as he was also involved as Churchwarden.


Signage – The new maps which had caused some controversy were still being developed and IM said he had now seen a much improved draft. It was hoped that this would be finished soon so they could be put up at The Wong and Tesco car parks. NF said that we have people coming into the town from outside the county and could really do with signage, even if this was just a brown sign to JBC.  IM explained that ELDC had also managed to use some last minute underspend from another town’s Welcome Back Funding to purchase two cast iron finger posts, one for the Market Place and another for the bridge near Tesco. These would finally enable signage to businesses on Bridge Street/West Street and North Street as well as Joseph Banks Centre, Community Centre and Roman Wall, and toilets,  as well as indicate direction of riverside walks. ELDC are still leasing with Leander Architectural on details prior to production of these but they should also go up soon. IM thought that this strand of work would then probably wind down so we may not need anyone to help with this. MS queried if we would need planning permission for finger boards as previously when we have tried to do signs we have been told it will cost us £600 each to apply for planning permission, adding it would be fantastic if we can get permission for these without restrictive costs.



Interpretation Boards – IM explained that ELDC had recently been trying to recruit a new temporary officer to deliver this project which had been many years in development both for himself and MS before him. It would see boards about the town’s history erected throughout the town along the Heritage Trail walking route that Horncastle Walkers had produced with input from the Society. He noted that it had gone quiet on this recently but once the officer was in post there would likely be a lot more activity as the Society would be needed to help with research and to find old photos from our Archives.


Rivers – IM had been working with MH (as leader of Horncastle Rivercare) and Paul Scott from the Joseph Banks Centre and several others to come up with ideas to enhance the town’s rivers, which everyone realised were an asset but because they fall between many different authorities responsibilities there was no one body to take things forward. The group had met with the Environment Agency, Lincolnshire Chalk Streams Project and the Lincolnshire Rivers Trust who had all made suggestions, and offers to support where they could. Particular issues include whether it would be possible to improve access for canoes and small craft, bringing life back to the ‘dead’ concrete section of the River Waring, improving riverside paths, and proposing new bridges to link the town together, as well as sharing the canal’s heritage with visitors. A report was being produced but people would be needed to help develop particular projects so anyone with an interest in the town’s rivers would be welcome to help.

Horse Fair – 2023 with be 75 years since the last Horncastle Horse Fair in 1948. IM said this would be an idea occasion to do an exhibition, or perhaps revive the fair as a cultural event. Again this is an idea the Society has proposed in the past. MS noted that we would need at least 12 people to deliver this. IM explained he had hoped it could be something that other groups, through Horncastle Together or a committee, as with the Platinum Jubilee Committee could work on together so it was not just on the Society to organise. MS also raised the dreadful condition of the Horse Fair blue plaque on the Bull Ring, which had been meant to be repaired during the Welcome Back Funding work but had fallen through the cracks. IM suggested this be a priority next year even if nothing else happens.


Visit to Hull – MS noted that the Society’s trip to Hull with a tour from Hull Civic Society may now be in mid September.


Battle of Britain Memorial Flight – can set up a group visit nearer to home which people can make their own way to.

Item 9.                       Programme of Talks


KW confirmed that he was happy to liaise with speakers etc if MS dealt with the payments/cheques -  he did query what the maximum fee was that we could pay as some speakers were happy to speak for a minimum charge or donation to specific charity, others had set fees and charged per mile for travel expenses.  MS had never forgotten a wise word of advice in that the better the speaker, the more people will attend and the more members you will encourage and, as thus, felt we should be looking to increasing the entry fee for the occasional speaker rather than just choosing speakers who don’t charge much.  Another suggestion was to charge an ‘in-between’ members/non-members rate for members of other similar groups that a particular speaker might appeal to which could raise attendance and possibly encourage new members also.

KW circulated a comprehensive list of potential speakers which he had split into different categories such as Aviation, Battles, Buildings, Industrial to name a few, which formed the basis of discussion by the Group and the selection of which they felt would be most interesting for our membership.  Some feedback had suggested talks should preferably have some local

context which was noted.  IM also asked KW if he could look into a talk by a Cambridge author Vic Gatrell who has just released a new book about the Cato Street Conspiracy.  Arthur Thistlewood, one of the lead figures in the conspiracy to assassinate the cabinet and overthrow the government, was from Horsington and student at QEGS– he was one of the five conspirators to be executed!


It was agreed that we would need nine speakers for the year as we traditionally do not arrange speakers for May (AGM), or August because many members are on holiday.  December has traditionally been a Christmas dinner rather than a meeting and MS will make tentative enquiries with the Masons re: cost and available dates for their venue.


Posters – IM is happy to design the posters and MS said herself and Vaughan were happy to put them up.  KW is happy to contact the newspaper if we can give him the contact details.  IM asked KW to get a few sentences from the speakers explaining what their talk is about and a few pictures if possible – this would be a great help putting the posters together.


KW also queried what equipment we have and what we should ask speakers to bring with them.  It was confirmed that we have a laptop, projector and screen but it was noted that not all laptops are compatible with the projector and even if they can get them to work, this sometimes takes half the available time.  JB advised that in the workplace this was a common problem and the easiest way around it was simply to ask speakers to bring their talk on a memory stick.  It was agreed we should invest in an extension cable as currently MS takes hers along to meetings.

Item 10.                     Discussion of Donations in Memory of Brian Lovely


As well as bringing a very large cake along to the archive group, Brian’s family have also donated £250 for us to do something with in his memory. 

MS had worked very closely with Brian for a number of years.  He was Horncastle born and bred, knew everybody and their nicknames! He was an absolute treasure identifying people on photographs.   He was involved in many activities and had always been a keen sportsman, interested in all sports, often watching football and cricket.  He was practically unbeatable at table tennis which he still played at Tetford Table Tennis Club up to just a few weeks before he sadly passed away.  The Tetford Table Tennis Club have decided that HHHS would be their chosen charity, giving us a further £100 in Brian’s memory.


Discussion took place as to what we could do in memory of Brian which we thought he would approve of.  We continue to give this some thought but initial thoughts to get a nice frame to mount some pictures of Brian to hang in the archive to remind us all of the tireless hours he spent with us.  MS knew Brian better than anyone so she agreed to draft letters of thanks which IM send to the family and the Table Tennis Club.  MS would also cost a suitable frame and collate pictures.


Item 11.                     Any Other Business


MH had sent a note to advise that Paul Scott was looking to run a SJB stall at the St Mary's Summer Garden Party in The Manor House grounds on Saturday 2 July (2-4p.m.) and asked if  anyone might be able to lend him a hand, possibly combine SJB with some HHHS material?  With this in mind discussion moved on to the upcoming Woodhall Show and Heckington Show.  We now have banners etc and it would be wonderful if we could get a few enthusiastic volunteers to attend these shows with a HHHS stall - NF advised he was planning to go along himself to sell some books.



NF advised that the JBC were looking at putting on an exhibition at the George Edward Lodge – a wildlife artist from Scrivelsby - which could possibly be a joint venture, something we could support.

NF had acquired some Welton’s vegetable purifying ‘Cure All’ Pills which were now on display but in need of a caption in the same format as other captions.  Welton had made money from the pills which he then invested in the railways, which in turn funded the Alms Houses on Queen Street.  MS has already catalogued these and would prepare the captions adding NF should also be refunded.

MS raised the issue of space and layout within the JBC.  We need clarity with SJBS as to what space is allocated to whom and give some proper consideration to layout as currently it is a real mish mash and visitors don’t always realise there is more to see beyond the initial rooms at the entrance.  We also need to have a meeting about book sales and explain to SJBS how many we understand we have sold.

NF had also queried if SJBC had an up to date Health & Safety assessment as there should be one if we are going to have formal visitors from the University.

IM raised the issue of Tuesday meetings not being possible for him going forward and it was agreed to hold the next meeting on a Friday but start earlier in the afternoon.


Item 10.                     Date of Next Meeting


            1pm on Friday 5th August at the Joseph Banks Centre.



Julie Bates


Exec minutes April 2022
minutes of meeting


Horncastle History & Heritage Society – Minutes of a Meeting of the Executive Committee held 10am on Tuesday 5th April 2022 at the Joseph Banks Centre, Horncastle

Present:         Ian Marshman (IM) Chairman, Mary Silverton (MS), Nick Fox (NF),
Michael Hiatt (MH) and Ros Rickard (RR),


Apologies:    Julie Bates (JB), Bob Wayne (BW), Kev Woodward (KW) and
Trevor Butterworth (TB)

Item 1.                        Apologies for Absence


IM accepted apologies from those members detailed above.


Item 2.                        Approval of Executive Minutes 22/02/22


Minutes of the previous meeting were accepted as an accurate reflection of what took place.


Item 3.                        Matters Arising


22/02/22 Item 3:      Future Talks: It was agreed that the next meeting due to be held on 27th           April would have to be cancelled as it had not been possible to find an alternative speaker (following a cancellation). IM had contacted Richard Avison who had volunteered to help as speaker finder to see if he had any luck confirming speakers for later in the year, as he had been having difficulty getting responses from speakers he had contacted over the winter. MS to speak to Jean Shaftoe who has recently published a book on the history of Fulletby. NF agreed to sound out a fellow Joseph Banks Centre volunteer who had worked for the Antarctic Survey and had an interest in John Franklin. It was also agreed to try to organise a social evening and quiz for the Society’s meeting on the 15th June where members could have a chance to get to know one another.


Item 4.                        Correspondence


IM had received a letter from member Ian Scard about an interesting talk being held at Revesby to help raise funds for the church roof. "Revesby from the Neolithic Period to the Present Day” will be presented by Mr Arthur Pattison (historian to the Revesby Estate) at 2:30pm on Saturday 30th April at Revesby Village Hall. Tickets £10, including tea and tasty morsels, with all proceeds going to the roof repairs. Ian Scard can be contacted by email at or on 01507 239856.


MS reported that she had contacted the Hull Civic Society to enquire if it might possible to arrange a guided tour of the city’s old town for our members. They had confirmed that they could offer us a tour, which could perhaps also include one of the museums. MS agreed to sound out interest amongst our members.


IM had been approached by the Society for Lincolnshire History & Archaeology about whether we could accommodate their Society’ annual summer picnic in the Joseph Banks Centre garden, with a tour of Horncastle, and someone to talk about the plants in the garden. IM had discussed with MS and Paul Scott and agreed that we could do so, with donations sought towards HHHS/JBC funds. It was also agreed not to offer to provide catering. The date for the visit is planned to be Saturday 13th August 2022.




Item 5.                       Finance


MS reported that the Society’s balance was currently £13,170. MS explained that she will soon be putting in another Gift Aid claim to HMRC, but needed to get a copy of a form from RA, our previous Treasurer first.


Following a suggestion by MH at the last meeting the Executive Committee discussed how the Society might spend the donations from the Photographic Society, and remainder of the funding provided by the Town Council to help establish the heritage centre at the JBC.


MS reported that only £1,600 of the Town Council’s original £5,000 remained unused, but that only £128 of the Photographic Society’s £5,000 donation had been spent. It was agreed that a new metal bookcase with a cover to protect books against fire would be useful to replace a wooden bookcase which was now on its last legs. It was also agreed to investigate purchasing a proper map chest to hang the Society’s collection of maps which were currently stored rolled up in cardboard tubes in the attic.


IM was reminded to submit expenses claim for the £60 cost of printing the Horncastle History Hunters Trail. All other members of the Executive Committee with outstanding expenses were reminded to submit them urgently so that the end of year accounts could be finalised.


Item 6.                       Planning Report


MH gave a brief update on planning, full notes of which will be circulated to members in due course. MH noted that there had been an increase in the number of planning applications lately.


The Committee discussed the news that Lidl was seeking to build a store off Boston Road (meaning the loss of the petrol station and garage), as well as the proposed new Aldi supermarket on Spilsby Road. There was general agreement that two new supermarkets would be too much for the town, and that the petrol station on Boston Road was an asset that it would be a shame to lose.


IM agreed to share the previous planning reference [S/086/02530/07] for the Water Mill, which it was understood that the new owner may be planning to implement. Although there was some uncertainty about whether or not a valid start had been made to the development before it expired, or whether a new planning application was needed to do anything beyond taking down and repairing the existing mill building.


Item 7.                       Queen’s Platinum Jubilee Plans


IM reported the exciting news that the Society has been awarded £10,000 from the Lincolnshire Community Foundation, via Arts Council England’s Lets Create Platinum Jubilee Fund. The Society submitted the application on behalf of the partners planning the celebrations in the town, which are coordinated by special sub-committee of the Town Council (town and parish councils were not eligible to apply unless they had no community groups or charities in their area).


·         £2,600 will go to the Horncastle Traders Association who are planning a celebration in the Market Place on Sunday 5th June, with stalls and a stage for local bands and dance groups as well as decorations and activities for children

·         £950 for the Society’s exhibitions and craft activities at the Joseph Banks Centre in May and June. Throughout May there would be an exhibition on life in Horncastle during the Queen’s reign, where ask people to help us find 70 photos of the town, one for each year from 1952-2022. Then opening on the Jubilee weekend there would be an exhibition looking back at how Horncastle celebrated the Queen’s Coronation in 1953, and previous jubilees in 1977 (Silver), 2002 (Golden) and 2012 (Diamond).

·         £6,000 will go on working with artists from the Different Light Collective (who run Spilsby Light Night) to organise a programme of creative activities in the deer park at Scrivelsby on Thursday 2nd June, building up to the official beacon lighting and fireworks. This was hoped to include an artist working with local schools and groups to make illuminated willow sculptures to decorate the Diamond Jubilee Wood, illuminating some of the ancient trees in the park, and a ‘fire garden’ leading up to the beacon, as well as music. There will also be a bar provided by Harpers, and food organised by The Lions, as well as a bugler to announce the lighting of the beacon at 9:45pm. This time is set nationally so that all beacons are lit at the same time, although it was understood that it was quite late it was necessary so that it was sufficiently dark.


IM confirmed he had booked a free charity stall for the Society on the Sunday event in the Market Place, where it was hoped we could run our ever-popular chocolate tombola, and sell copies of our books etc. There will also be a parade through town on the Sunday morning and IM suggested we consider having a ‘float’, but this was dependant on having enough volunteers, as the stall will need to be set up at the same time. MS agreed to help with the chocolate tombola and NF to help with the exhibition.


If anyone has an interesting vehicle that the Society could use for the parade, or if you would like to help on the tombola stall or be in the parade, please do get in touch. We are also looking for volunteers to help prepare the jubilee exhibitions, and to help welcome visitors to the Joseph Banks Centre this spring and summer. If you have any photos or mementos from the Coronation or previous jubilees in Horncastle’s we’d love to see include them in our exhibitions.


Item 8.                        Archives & Joseph Banks Centre Update


NF reported that the Joseph Banks Centre had been quiet through the winter months, with the exception of the well-attended February half term craft activities. There had not always been much for volunteers to do. It was hoped that volunteers would return as visitors begin to flock into town as the weather improves. NF also explained that he had agreed to take over looking after the tourist information area, and planned to reorganise it to focus much more on Horncastle itself and nearby attractions.


IM also reminded the Executive Committee of the upcoming visits from Horncastle Brownies who had asked for the Society’s help to achieve their Local History Badge. NF agreed to the help with their visit.


IM reported that he had managed to just get 25,000 copies of a leaflet to promote the Joseph Banks Centre printed before the end of the financial year in order to benefit from £500 that was budgeted for this in the Town Council’s £25,000 allocation from the Government’s Welcome Back Fund (awarded via ELDC). These would arrive soon and it was hoped to distribute them to local museums, tourist information centres and caravan sites. It was hoped these would last us for a few years and would greatly help raise awareness of the new museum. If any members would be able to help distribute leaflets when they are out and about, please do let us know.


Item 9.                       Any Other Business


NF reported that he had recently had a second edition printed of his (until now out of print) book on the Lincolnshire Rising. He kindly agreed to donate some copies to the Society to sell through the Joseph Banks Centre. Members are encouraged to buy a copy asap to avoid disappointment.


IM had received an enquiry asking for assistance identifying the owner of the obelisk on North Street outside the Old Court/Job Centre and whether it was a Listed building. IM understood this was new and only put up c.2000 as part of the Horncastle Conservation Area Partnership Scheme run by ELDC and part funded by English Heritage. The Civic Society (as then was) were partners in the scheme but IM could not find details of ownership arrangements in the files. The only record seemed to be minutes of a meeting where the idea of enhancements on North Street were discussed. It seemed likely that it belongs to ELDC as they funded and delivered the scheme, but neither they nor the County Council now claimed to own it. The enquiry had come about because volunteers from the Co-op wished to clean it, and it was hoped that the owner could be traced so that their offer could be taken up. MS agreed to see if she could find any other information.


Item 10.                     Date of Next Meeting


            3pm on Tuesday 3rd May at the Joseph Banks Centre.



Minutes by Ian Marshman as JB was unable to attend.

Exec minutes Feb 2022
minutes of meeting

Horncastle History & Heritage Society – Minutes of a Meeting of the Executive Committee held 3pm on Tuesday 22nd February 2022 at the Joseph Banks Centre, Horncastle

Present:          Ian Marshman (IM) Chairman, Nick Fox (NF), Ian French (IF), Michael Hiatt (MH),
Ros Rickard (RR), Kev Woodward (KW) and Julie Bates (JB).
Chris Bates (CB) also joined the meeting for AOB.


Apologies:      Mary Silverton (MS), and Trevor Butterworth (TB)

Item 1.             Apologies for Absence


IM accepted apologies from those members detailed above.


Items 2.           Approval of Executive Minutes 11/01/2022


Minutes of the previous meeting were accepted as an accurate reflection of what took place.


Item 3.             Matters Arising



11/01/22 Item 3:         Local Heritage List: IM advised he had submitted the Youth Centre and Watson’s Yard and reminded that we had agreed to add all the ‘non designated’ heritage buildings suggested on the local plan should be added, pointing out that anyone can put forward buildings they feel are special but not already currently ‘Listed’ and encouraged members to do so via the website MH asked if A Hare & Sons building was a listed building.  IM said not but felt it probably should be, adding it had recently appeared in an article by Nicholas Moore in the SHLA magazine ‘Lincolnshire Past and Present’.  He noted that it was  by the same architect that built the Punch House (now Grace’s Boutique etc.) which is listed.  All agreed and IM would speak with Emilie Wales and ask her to put this building forward.


11/01/22  Item 3:        Future Talks:  IM advised that Rich Avison (RA) was having difficulty getting responses from potential speakers.  RA was going to try contacting potential speakers again and IM hoped it had simply been a case of emails being overlooked on the run up to Christmas and that speakers would get back in touch confirming their availability.  It was agreed that Paul Scott could do 16th March and that the 27th April was already agreed to be Mike Arnold on the local Iron Age Corieltauvi tribe, and the 18th May meeting would be the AGM, which would give some time to get other speakers in place. IM was booked to speak in November but that could be brought forward if necessary and it was also suggested we could consider having a quiz night one month if struggling for speakers – BW has previously organised quizzes and all hoped he might be persuaded to do so again. IM asked for a volunteer to act as Chair at the March meeting as he was potentially double booked that evening.  Confirmed that meetings generally to take place the third Wednesday of every month (except August and December) and that April was moved owing to its proximity to Easter holidays.


11/01/22  Item 4:        Brownies:  IM has confirmed with the local Brownies to visit the archives at JBC on 25th April (time to be arranged) and to take the group on a walk around the town on 9th May.  Volunteers welcome to help in showing them around.


11/01/22  Item 9:        Rivers Project: IM and MH and other volunteers had met with representatives of the Environment Agency and Lincolnshire Chalk Stream Project to discuss ideas for river enhancements. They had suggested trying to obtain funding and then get an expert to assess the possibilities.  Paul Scott had agreed to try to arrange to meet with the Lincolnshire Wildlife Trust who own a large section of riverbank in town before any funding bids were developed.


Item 4.             Correspondence


IM has received a letter from a neighbour in respect of St Lawrence Church at Revesby which is in need of a new roof estimated at more than £70k and asking if there is anything we are able to do to help them.  It was understood that Paul Scott from JBC was already involved and there were more links with Joseph Banks than with Horncastle itself.  We have been hoping to be able to arrange a tour of Revesby Abby for our members (suggested at the AGM) and if there is anything they can do to help organise this then we could perhaps cost in a donation to the church roof fund from members attending the tour. We could also offer to hold an exhibition on Revesby at the Joseph Banks Centre to raise the profile of the village and its church.

Stickford History Society – it has been agreed to show this group around the town on 23rd June start 12.30 at the Joseph Banks Centre) and any volunteers would be welcome to help.  The group have previously made a donation towards the Roman Wall and their earlier planned visit had to be cancelled owing to Covid regulations.  MH suggested IM include a visit to the Manor House gardens and Roman Wall within the tour and IM felt the visitors would be very grateful to be able to do this. 


Carers First will be holding a Zoom meeting between 1 – 2 pm on 9th March on East Lincolnshire local history ‘Sons of Solomon’.  You don’t have to be a carer to join in and IM will send a poster out with details of how to join the zoom meeting as soon as possible.



Item 5.             Finance


MS was unable to attend the meeting but IM advised that the balance on 30th January 2022 was £13,068, since when there should be £181.10 to go in thanks to Nick Fox’s excellent talk, less £20 room hire fee.  


Between meeting IM had quickly produced a Horncastle History Treasure Hunt leaflet aimed at encouraging kids and families to visit the Joseph Banks Centre during February half term. The cost of which had be £60.81 for printing 100 copies and 250 stickers to give as prizes. All approved that IM should claim the money back and felt it may be appropriate to fund this from the Town Council grant money as this was to encourage visitors to the centre. The JBC volunteers had also organised some successful craft activities on the Thursday and Friday of half term which despite poor weather were well-received.

MH noted that we did have rather a lot of money in grants in our account and as a charity did we have plans to use it. All agreed we do need to give some thought to how we spend our various grant money. IM noted that we were hoping to buy a touch screen information board with some of the Town Council money for establishing the JBC heritage displays but then one had kindly been donated.  It was generally felt that whilst we should do something specific with grant money, we should also consider keeping some money in reserve for archives and the centre as all costs are rising and may well increase our general outgoings.  It was agreed to add an item to the next agenda.


Item 6.             Planning Report (MH)


MH gave a brief update to the meeting, the main points were as follows:-

·              Work at the new ELDC HQ building is moving ahead rather quickly and the inner layer of the outer cladding is already in place.   IM wanted to bring to the attention of the meeting that ELDC wanted to demolish another of the old Holmleigh cottages simply to provide additional car parking and they have put in a ‘Scoping’ application to which IM feels we should object to very strongly.

·              Not heard anything further in relation to the planning application for building 165 dwellings on land off Mareham Road and it was noted that it appeared that an access to this site was formed some time ago and that preparatory works may have been done for some house bases.  MH to speak with enforcement officer to ask what is going on at this site.

·              The Mill – Walls were taken down on the eastern section to enable scaffolding to be erected and scaffolding has been erected on the west side. Basically the building needs to be supported by scaffolding before the roof can be removed. The whole area to the north of the old Mill Building has been cleared of temporary structures to ground level.  There are conditions that they need to record archaeology so should not be digging.

·              6 Market Place – Notices for urgent works have been served but no action taken and there are concerns that a crack above the ground floor windows at the front of the building may have widened during recent storms. IM proposed that we and local traders should write to ELDC.

·              Mountview motors – we objected based on the proposed 24/7 opening and commented about external lighting, potential noise and other matters. A revised noise assessment has been submitted.

·            Aldi Stores Pre-Planning Consultation – There were mixed feelings about the possible Aldi store, some felt it may take trade away from the town, others felt it may bring people to the town. It was agreed that we should submit some of our thoughts about how the design could be improved such as speed limits/crossings and cycle paths, or even traffic light/roundabout access for the site as this road is extremely busy during summer months, and the general design of the store could be improved to use local materials. All agreed we should get some financial benefit for the town via a Section 106 contribution. MH will draft a response.

MH will prepare planning notes to be distributed.

Item 7.             Archives and Joseph Banks Centre Updates


NF continues as a volunteer and advised that whilst the JBC had been fairly quiet, the half term holiday had been busy and activities had gone well.  The Ichthyosaurus fossil display will remain for a little while but would replace the Timothy Brammer display soon. With energy costs increasing all users of the JBC are requested not to turn things on unnecessarily and to ensure they turn lights off when not needed.


Item 8.             Queen’s Platinum Jubilee June 2022 Plans


As had previously been discussed we have been made aware of Arts Council Grants between £750 and £10k for which community groups like ourselves could apply but in order to apply for one of the larger grants we would need to work in collaboration with a recognised artist.  IM reported he had been working with the other volunteers on the Town Council’s Jubilee Committee on a joint bid and suggested we apply for the £10,000 to be split £950 for our Jubilee exhibitions at the Joseph Banks Centre, £2,600 for the traders association towards a street party in the Market Place and events similar to previous Christmas markets such as performers, food, big screen and stalls then £6k towards a community art event at the Scriveslby beacon lighting. IM explained that we would not have to organise everything, and funding would go to the people involved in each event, but that a charity had to be the lead applicant as Town Councils could not apply unless there were no community organisations or civic society in their area.


IM had met with Gail Dymoke to discuss the beacon at Scrivelsby and there was the potential to hold a extra activities there in conjunction with the beacon, teaching children how to make lanterns with willow and the grant could fund this.  Whilst the beacon event and lantern making would take place at Scrivelsby (beacon on the Thursday evening) the street party in the square and an exhibition would take place in the town.  JB suggested trying to get a vintage bus to operate a free service between Horncastle and Scrivelsby for the beacon event – obviously fuel would need to be funded via any grant money we obtained but the bus owner/society would be able to carry a bucket for donations to their restoration projects.  Does anyone know of anyone who owns a vintage bus that might be interested in this?  CB will ask friends who may know of somebody in the area.


Plans for the exhibition were to photos and film footage of celebrations in Horncastle from previous jubilee years and trying to gather the names of people in them.  It was noted that whilst we have footage from the Silver Jubilee 1977 and the Diamond Jubilee 2012, there doesn’t seem to be anything from the Golden Jubilee in 2002 – does anyone have any film footage or photographs from this?


Another suggestion was to try and organise something similar to the window wonderland event by decorating shops based upon what business would have been done there during the coronation year.  IM felt it might be too difficult to find out what the different shops were used for in the limited time available.  Agreed to submit bid and discuss this and any other ideas at the next Executive meeting.



Item 09.           Timings of Future Talks at Community Centre


        IM circulated information prior to the meeting explaining that the Community Centre had asked if we could slightly retime our meetings as they had an existing booking for a dance class on Wednesdays until 7:30. It was suggested that we could keep the same 7:00 for 7:30 start time and use the small hall, or we could have use of the Tennyson Room for people to gather and start the talk as soon as we could be set up, probably no earlier that 7:45. All agreed that the community centre was a better venue, certainly better value, but the small hall would not be big enough for our talks.  It was understandable that the community centre don’t want to lose the booking for the dance class as they have the room every Wednesday evening so it was agreed that we would aim to start our meetings at 7.45 pm instead of 7.30 pm.  We would need to ask people to avoid arriving early wherever possible and those that do, then ask them to gather in the Tennyson Room until the hall is available - perhaps aim to have tea and coffee on sale if we can, depending on volunteers available to do this.  There would still be a need to get the chairs put out promptly once the dance class ends.  IM reminded everyone that he might not be available as he had a potential double booking on this date.



Item 10.          Any other Business

Railway Book – CB joined the meeting to update the Group on the progress of the book, the working title of which is ‘The Railway that Horncastle Built’ to reflect the original intentions of its Horncastle promoters and the fact that it stayed an independent and profitable company until the compulsory grouping of railways in 1922.   It is intended to show a broader picture of the railway and the contribution it made to the life of the district, rather than the format of a conventional railway history and CB hopes the book will appeal to those with an interest in the history of Horncastle and District, or social history, of railways and their branch lines and operation.


Discussion took place about the layout of the book, the amount of pictures to be used and where these were to be sourced, indeed whether to only use black and white or include colour.  There was also discussion around publishers, the pros and cons of using a publisher opposed to self publication, obtaining an ISBN number etc.  It was agreed to discuss this further at the next meeting when it was hoped MS would be able to attend as she is the most knowledgeable person when it comes to previous publications made by the Society.  CB will make tentative enquiries at Morton's to find out how much they would charge and will ask MS about the costs involved publishing the Great War book as he anticipates this book could be around the same size.


Mural on public toilets – IM understands that East Lindsey have now commissioned a graffiti artist who will decorate the outer walls of the public toilets.  IM wasn’t sure if this would involve the whole building or just a section of the front face of the outer wall but understands there will be an opportunity to meet the artist and find out more in the Market Place on 21st April and 7th May with the work to go ahead between 28th and 30th May.  Anyone can have a go on 28th, children only on 29th then the artist will finish the mural on 30th.  It was unknown if planning permission was required for!



Item 10.                       Date of next Meeting

3pm on Tuesday 5th April at the Joseph Banks Centre



Julie Bates
Executive Committee Minutes Secretary



Executive meeting January 2022
Executive minutes January 2022

Horncastle History & Heritage Society – Minutes of a Meeting of the Executive Committee held 3pm on Tuesday 11th January 2022 at the Joseph Banks Centre, Horncastle

Present: Ian Marshman (IM) Chairman, Bob Wayne (BW), Michael Hiatt (MH) and Julie Bates (JB).
Chris Bates (CB) and Kev Woodward (KW) also attended as guests.

Apologies: Mary Silverton (MS), Nick Fox (NF), Ian French (IF), Trevor Butterworth (TB) and
Ros Rickard (RR)

Item 1. Apologies for Absence

IM accepted apologies from those members detailed above.

Items 2. Approval of Executive Minutes 02/11/2021

Minutes of the previous meeting were accepted as an accurate reflection of what took place.

Item 3. Matters Arising

02/11/21 Item 3: Suggestions for future talks: IM pointed out that we needed to make a decision as to whether to proceed with the talk scheduled for 19th January, adding that this talk was to be given by Nicola Grayson and that she was happy to go ahead. It was agreed we would proceed with precautions such as spacing out chairs and ventilating the room and ask members to keep a safe distance and to wear masks. We will not offer refreshments at this time as this would mean people would need to remove masks. IM will email members reminding them of the talk and the venue – all meetings will now take place at Horncastle Community Centre, Manor House Street, unless advised otherwise.

02/11/21 Item 3: Local Heritage List: IM advised there is now a website on which buildings can be put forward. He will attempt to add Watson’s Yard and the Youth Centre as we have previously researched their history. Members are encouraged to put forward any buildings they think are special but not currently ‘Listed’

02/11/21 Item 8: Vital & Viable: IM had worked with other volunteers to get new map board of the town placed in the Tesco and Wong car parks. They were also hoping to put vinyl covers inside the windows of two empty buildings in the town centre which will at least hide the mess inside and make the area look more cared for. Planning permission will be needed to do this.

02/11/21 Item 8: Window Wanderland: This was a very successful event with over 100 homes, businesses and groups decorating windows. IM had appeared on Look North and the event received a lot of publicity, hopefully encouraging people into Horncastle. People have suggested they would like to do this again next year so thinking caps on for what we can do at JBC.

Item 4. Correspondence

BW advised he had received an email today with suggestions on how to improve the churchyard and how to obtain funding for such projects which will be discussed at the next Friends of the Church meeting.

IM had been contacted by the local Brownies who would appreciate some help. They have asked for somebody to join them on a walk around the town pointing out things of historical interest for their Local History Badge. IM offered to assist and would also invite them to visit the JBC and our Archives, although no date had yet been agreed it was likely to be in the warmer months.

Topical at the moment as the fossil of an Ichthyosaur ‘Sea Dragon’ has recently been discovered at Rutland Water, IM has been contacted by somebody who has found fossils of an Ichthyosaur which they say were found near Horncastle and would like for it to be on display somewhere. Agreed to offer to put them on temporary display but would need to find out more about the size of the fossils before committing to take them on longer term loan at the JBC.

Item 5. Finance

MS was unable to attend the meeting but had advised IM that the balance on 31 December 2021 was £14,012, since when there were £1,125 of outgoings (this included the rent) leaving a current balance of £12,887.

Item 6. Planning Report (MH)

MH gave a brief update to the meeting as follows:-

· Advised that an earlier application for outline planning permission had been granted for a house of not more than one story high at the rear of The Fighting Cocks. The detailed application has since come in showing what is claimed to be a dormer bungalow but which clearly consists of two floors. Whilst the general appearance shown by the plans is not too bad it is in direct breach of the Condition "not more than one story”. MH has lodged an official objection concern the breach of a Condition.

· Not heard anything furtherin relation to theplanning application for building 165 dwellings on land off Mareham Road.

· Development of the old Travis Perkins yard: Coop Funeral Service are looking to re-locate to the premises. The application looks to smarten up the frontage to help restore the street scene and tidy the area adjacent to the bridge in Bridge Street. Minor comments submitted concerning the style of fencing and bollards.

· Application has come in for Watson’s Yard, to convert this back into a two story house with one en-suite bedroom upstairs.

· Work around the back of no. 8 High Street (which is now a tea shop) is on-going and looks to be being nicely done.

· The Mill – IM had sent a message round as he was concerned there seemed to be a little less of the building every day – much more than the roof which was the only bit supposed to be removed. IM understood that the roof was so bad the whole roof needed to be replaced and in order to do this, the building needs to be entombedin scaffolding. Some walls have had to come down in order to access with scaffolding etc.

MH will prepare planning notes to be distributed.

Item 7. Archives and Joseph Banks Centre Updates

KW advised there was still a flow of more piles of documents to catalogue, and a bit of a problem with things being left without any note saying where it had come from or who had left it etc.

NF has volunteered to take charge of changing the smaller display cases near the entrance quarterly and MS has given him a list of possible displays including Victory Cinema, Skegness Walk, Floods, Dymokes (Queens Champion), Lincolnshire Rising and Fossils. IM pointed out that there was still some money left from the Town Council Grant for setting up the heritage centre which could be used for this.

There is a meeting coming up on Friday of JBC volunteers which IM and NF will attend to plan future exhibition in 2022, as we need to agree what ‘bigger’ exhibitions we will do this year.

Item 8. Queen’s Platinum Jubilee June 2022 Plans

The Society was asked to join a Committee planning events in the town to be chaired by Cllr Dominic Hinkins. IM responded, volunteering to get involved, but is not aware that any meeting has yet been held. He understood that there were going to be Arts Council Grants of between £750 and £10k for which community groups like ourselves could apply. The smaller grants can be applied for almost any project but in order to apply for one of the larger grants we would need to work in collaboration with a recognised artist. IM had previously proposed that we focus on an exhibition on Scrivelsby and the Queens Champions, however NF had since suggested a project covering more of the social history of the Queens reign, which could be much more popular. There has also been some cine film uncovered of a procession through Horncastle for the Queens Silver Jubilee in 1977, and it was suggested that we share it online and try to identify everyone on the floats. Another possibility was to have a more interactive exhibition where we try to find 70 photographs, one for every year during HM’s reign. We needed to decide if we wanted to erect something in the town, perhaps on Jubilee Way or Coronation Walk, though there would be a very tight deadline especially if it was needed to obtain planning permission as the grants must be for things that reach their climax on the Jubilee bank holiday weekend in the first week of June. BW thought it would be good to recreate Julians Bower – a turf-cut maze. There was one by where the swimming pool is now – but perhaps that would be a good idea for a future project.

Item 09. Any other matters

IM and MH, joined by Paul from JBC, will be attending a meeting with a representative of the Environment Agency and the Lincolnshire Chalk Streams Project to discuss what can be done to improve the rivers in the town. There had also been talk of creating a centre for canoeing, hoping to increase the depth of the water slightly.

CB advised that he had followed up on correspondence received during the Railway Exhibition from a Horncastle resident who would like to donate model railway equipment. It had been his intention to recreate Horncastle station and had already recreated a part of the line around Martin Bridge but was no longer able to continue with this, and he has already ordered a model of the station to be built by a professional modeller. It was agreed that the Society does not have the space, nor the expertise to deal with constructing a model railway from scratch and it was agreed that CB would contact the gentleman and ask if he would be happy for us to circulate to our membership to see if anyone has experience of model railways and would be interested in taking on his equipment, on the proviso that once finished, the model would be made available for display purposes in Horncastle. If no uptake from our membership then perhaps approach railway model clubs in the surrounding areas – maybe a Horncastle model railway club could be formed?

Railway Book – CB felt there was probably enough raw material from what was pulled together for the exhibition and new material which came in as a result of the exhibition to create a book about the social history of the railway rather than another book just about trains. He felt the size of the Mareham le Fen booklet would be too small and wondered if we should look to creating a larger format book with ISBN number, similar to what was done for the Great War book. CB felt that by adapting the words IM had already edited, and add in new information gained (noting there were a few interviews still to do) along with previously unpublished photographs and access to pictures of old tickets there was enough there to make a book interesting to locals and historians as well as people interested in railways.

IM felt it was worth speaking to MS about how the Great War book was published and he had a vague idea that you had to purchase a batch of ISBN numbers so it is possible we already have some unused ones available. All agreed it was worth putting a book together if it could be done without too much financial risk – could we apply for an grant for this? IM noted we could use our prize money from the SLHA’s Flora Murray Award as this had been in recognition of our work on the railway exhibition.

Item 10. Date of next Meeting

3pm on Tuesday 22nd February at the Joseph Banks Centre

Julie Bates
Executive Committee Minutes Secretary

Horncastle History & Heritage Society – Minutes of a Meeting of the Executive Committee held 3pm on Tuesday 7th September 2021 at the Joseph Banks Centre, Horncastle

Present: Ian Marshman (IM) Chairman, Bob Wayne (BW), Michael Hiatt (MH), Ian French (IF) and Julie Bates (JB), and for the Item 8 only Trevor Olsson (TO) and Paul Scott from the Joseph Banks Centre

Apologies: Mary Silverton (MS), Nick Fox (NF), Trevor Butterworth (TB) and Ros Rickard (RR)

Item 1. Apologies for Absence

IM accepted apologies from those members detailed above.

Items 2. Approval of Executive Minutes 27/07/2021

Minutes of the previous meeting were accepted as an accurate reflection of what took place with one typing correction as follows:- In the second paragraph of Item 3 Correspondence, Richard Hill was described as a mixed race equality campaigner, scientist and layer – this should read lawyer

Item 3. Matters Arising

27/07/21 Item 7: Local Heritage List: IM had been contacted by the Town Council about this, and he asked if they wanted to work on this list jointly but has not heard back from them. It was agreed that HHHS would continue to put buildings forward as there were concerns we could miss the opportunity to put buildings forward if left waiting for confirmation from the Town Council.

BW advised that himself and David Lawrence had produced a list approximately 10 years ago and BW had taken a photograph of every one of the properties listed. MH asked if a copy of this list still existed as this would be very helpful. BW would try to locate a copy.

Item 4. Planning Report (MH)

MH gave a brief update to those attending the meeting. There had not been much change, with most projects seeing intermittent work with slow progress. MH will put together a planning report to circulate with the minutes and proposes to shorten the list by omitting some of the long standing projects unless there is anything in particular to update on those. We still receive the weekly list of planning applications from the council but it is fairly quiet at the moment.

It was noted that the report on the Flood Relief Scheme June 2019 was still awaited.

The work on the Roman Wall was now more or less complete, just need to lay turf but understood there had been some issues around an elm tree. Professional advice is to pollard the tree and an application has been made in order to do this. So far the Tree Officer has acknowledged receipt of the application but has not yet responded. BW will be collecting remaining fence panels to put around the base of the tree.

On the subject of trees, there has been a planning application approval for a bungalow to be built on land at the back of the Fighting Cocks public house some time ago. Concern has been raised about a number of mature trees in the area that could be endangered owing to the building work. These trees have preservation orders and are being closely watched.

Item 5. Plans for AGM (29th Sept) and Blue Plaque Unveiling (15th Sept)

Blue Plaque: IM contacted the Co-op Community Champion to ask if there would be any refreshments available for the unveiling ceremony - she said yes but still awaiting confirmation of this. JB advised that she was not available on this date and had also received apologies from IF. MH added he was unavailable on this date too. IM and BW were available and it was understood that Colin Gascoyne will also attend. The widow of our late member, Keith Sellars, had been asked to do the unveiling. MS had asked her if she would be prepared to officiate at the unveiling in memory of Keith who had initiated the idea of commemorating Sully and contributed much of the early research for the Thomas Sully project.

AGM: IM confirmed that the AGM would take place in the Tennyson Room at the Community Centre on 29th September, 7.30 pm. JB advised that the examiner would return the signed off end of year financial report to her as MS was currently unavailable, and she would then scan this and send in pdf format to IM for circulation. JB also noted an error on the AGM agenda which had been sent to those members that receive documents electronically. Having spotted the error was able to send an amended version to those members unable to receive their documents by email. IM agreed he would send out an amended version of the agenda with the financial report once this was available – a copy of the financial report will be available to view at the meeting.

Item 6. Suggestions for Future Talks

Discussion took place on possible subjects for future talks. IM started by mentioning a work colleague, Nicola Grayson, who is currently recording historic towns of Lincolnshire and will be researching Horncastle soon. This would involve studying the development of Horncastle through the ages, creating maps of how the town has expanded outwards over the years. Another possible subject convict Maria Carter who had been transported to Australia who had recently come to IM's attention whilst preparing the Heritage Open Day exhibition with the Joseph Banks Society. He felt he could probably gather enough material to do a talk on her. Another topic given the renewed interest in rivers would be a talk on the Horncastle Canal.

Other suggestions were Rachael Miles who has been research the local woad industry. Paul at JBC is able to give a few different talks about the life of Joseph Banks, beginning with his early life, and then others on his Lincolnshire influences.

Other topics which it was agreed would be of interest are Militaria, aviation heritage (possibly someone from East Kirkby of Metheringham RAF heritage sites), the Horse Fair and Lawless and Immoral Horncastle

The Committee also agreed to move meetings in 2022 to the Community Centre (following the existing bookings this year already made at the Admiral Rodney). The room hire at the Community Centre would work out costing less providing we didn’t require the bar to be opened, for which there is a standard £20 fee to open the bar. It was felt that this was a lot to pay and agreed not to have the bar facility though it was noted that people are not allowed to bring their own alcoholic refreshments. We may look to booking another smaller room for a short period for the sale of tea and coffee during an interval. MS had suggested we might try to hold monthly meetings though this would involve a lot more work and needed input from more members rather than the same few taking on all the work. IM would book the room for the 3rd Wednesday in every month for the time being.

It is hoped that one or more members might take on the role of coordinating talks, contacting speakers, confirming dates etc. Please consider putting yourself forward for this role at the upcoming AGM or let us know if you would be interested but are unable to make it to the meeting.

Item 7. Creation of new Roman sculpture

IM had been approached by two of our members, who wanted to put up some statues around the town depicting the Roman heritage of the town. IM had shown them the model of a design based on the four horsemen from the Roman cavalry created by David Lawrence who has since moved away from Horncastle. The original idea had been to put this on the Spa Trail between Horncastle and Thornton Lodge but there had not been sufficient funding.

The members had proposed that they would do the legwork and raise the funds needed if the Society would be happy for them to do it under our auspices. They had provisionally discussed the sculpture being located next to Jubilee Way like the other horse statues, but at the other end near the junction with West Street/Langton Hill (southwest of the traffic lights). IM had in principal said yes as this was a project we had already developed and supported and had only failed to proceed for lack of time and funding, so if members wanted to help with this then it was a good opportunity to make some progress. It was understood that they would be contacting David Lawrence as they were still in touch with him. The Committee agreed that the members who had volunteered should be thanked for their offer and encouraged to start investigating the practicalities.

Item 8. Joseph Banks Centre & Archives - update

Trevor Olsson (TO) and Paul Scott (PS) from JBC joined the meeting at this point to discuss the recent End of the Line Horncastle Railway Exhibition.

All agreed that the exhibition had been a tremendous success with almost 2,000 visitors over the six weeks, and a well-attended talk by Mike Fowler given on Friday 13th August at the Community Centre. Thanks were extended to Chris Bates for all his research work making the exhibition possible, Mike Fowler and his wife Pat for the loan of exhibits and all the members who gave up their time to help setting up and greeting visitors throughout the exhibition.

Whilst all the figures had not been finalised, IM was confident that we had covered all the printing costs and costs of providing accommodation for Mike Fowler (who had travelled from Bedfordshire and made no charge for his time, travel or loan of his collection). The agreement was that donations received on days that the JBC would usually be closed would be retained by HHHS and donations received on days JBC would usually be open would be shared evenly between the two organisations.

There were concerns that the machine installed to take card donations had not worked properly and it was felt that we had probably lost a number of donations. Book sales had done very well, having sold all 50 copies of the book on the Horncastle to Woodhall Junction line purchased from the Wolds Railway, we were able to get a further supply of 50 but only sold around 14 of these so far. It was hoped we may be able to still sell these at meetings etc. We had also taken 10 copies of a new book about Boston Railways written by friends of Mike Fowlers and have sold 9 of those.

Lessons Learned – Trevor and Paul admitted that almost all visitors during the period of the exhibition said they had come to see the railway exhibition, which is attributed to the great publicity we had in local press and in several national railway magazines. However, following the special open weekend (which was extended to an open week) the Horncastle News had featured the model railway which had been lent only for the weekend, and Mike Fowler's collection of artefacts which had only been loaned for the week. Whilst it had been reported that these were only there for the weekend/first week respectively, many people arriving after they had gone and had then gone away disappointed that they were no longer there. It was agreed that in future all exhibitions need to include all exhibits from start to finish, rather than have special events with extra things added. It was also agreed that in future exhibitions should stay up longer to make best use of the huge effort that had gone into preparing them.

Despite having video equipment, Trevor confessed it hadn’t occurred to him to video the exhibition. IM had taken a few short videos and agreed they would look at these and see if we could put them on Facebook and the website for those who missed out.

It was agreed that JBC and HHHS need to get together before the end of the year and put a plan together for exhibitions in 2022.

TO and PS had asked IM to become a Director of Joseph Bank Ltd which is the limited liability company that legally leases and runs the centre, with the charity the Joseph Banks Society - like HHHS does - sub-letting space from it. It was also suggested that a group of external people including specialists in topics like geology, insects, botany, history, archaeology etc be set up as an Advisory Group for the Centre. TO and PS suggested that IM would be useful regarding his expertise in archaeology on such an advisory group. All agreed that it would be a good idea for IM to take on the Directorship role providing there were no legal reasons he couldn’t, and it was accepted that he would sometimes need to abstain or declare interests for items involving HHHS.

Item 9. Any other matters

The Photographic Society have very kindly given the Society a donation of £5,000 following the sale of Watson's Yard to an unknown buyer. They had confirmed to MS that the funds could be used however the Society saw fit, although of course it would be good to use it for purposes related to photography and the important collections of old photos of Horncastle in our Archives. The JBC confirmed they had received a similar gift and are using this money to scan photographic slides, and to purchase a 3D scanner so they are spending this on something connected to photography and imaging. IM has already thanked them on behalf of the Society for this gift and has encouraged them to consider donating any of their photographs, especially those which won any of prizes and trophies that now form part of our Archive.

BW mentioned an Arts Council project he had been involved with whereby people were invited to write articles on their "Memories of Lincolnshire”. BW had written an article including some memories of his time in Horncastle, but was unsure how good or otherwise this was, and had not yet seen any of the other memories included. He understood this would be published on 27 September and he would receive a copy embargoed until then. Contributors were being encouraged to give talks on the book so BW may be able to put something together for a talk.

TO advised that JBC have a recording device available if anyone wanted to sit with people and record oral histories of their memories. Any member who is interested in collecting people's memories should get in touch as time is of the essence. Several older local people have come forward with fascinating stories to tell.

Item 11. Date of next Meeting

The date of the next meeting will be 3pm on Wednesday 27th October at the Joseph Banks Centre.

Julie Bates
Executive Committee Minutes Secretary

NB. Please be assured that Correspondence and Finance sections of the usual agenda have deliberately been omitted here, as there had been no significant new correspondence and the Treasurer was not able to attend the meeting.

Horncastle History & Heritage Society – Minutes of a Meeting of the Executive Committee held 3pm on Tuesday 27th July 2021 at the Joseph Banks Centre, Horncastle

Present: Ian Marshman (IM) Chairman, Mary Silverton (MS), Michael Hiatt (MH), Nick Fox (NF), Ian French (IF), Ros Rickard (RR), June Benton (JnB) and Chris Bates (CB)

Apologies: Trevor Butterworth (TB), Bob Wayne (BW)* and Julie Bates (JB)

Item 1. Apologies for Absence

IM accepted apologies from those members detailed above. All thanked CB for standing in to take notes and wished JB a speedy recovery.
*BW attended the latter part of the meeting.

Items 2. Approval of Executive Minutes 15/06/2021 and Matters Arising (MA):

Minutes of the previous meeting were accepted as an accurate reflection of what took place.

15/06/21 Item 6: MS reported that the Admiral Rodney was insisting on card payments (not cash or cheque) and had been unsympathetic to an explanation of the difficulties this would cause the society. General view was to seek alternative venues for events and to see how we get on using the Community Centre.

27/04/021 Item 9: Thomas Sully blue plaque – MS has been in touch with Co-op to ask about refreshments for unveiling but have been unable to reach manager. Gwen Sellars (wife of late Keith Sellars) who originally suggested a plaque to Sully has agreed to unveil it.

Item 3. Correspondence

MS reported Amazon Smile was offering 5% payment to society from purchases made by members if they signed up to a discount scheme; agreed not to pursue.

IM said University of Lincoln was planning a project on "Untold Lincolnshire” and was particularly interested in learning about women, ethnic minorities and others whose contribution to the county’s life might otherwise be forgotten. Agreed to suggest inclusion Annie Dixon the miniature portrait painter, and Richard Hill, a mixed race equality campaigner, scientist and layer with origins in Horncastle and Jamaica, who subsequently returned to the island where he rose to high office.

Item 4. Financial Report (MS)

Figures with the auditor at 25th June 2021 showed balance of £10,335.51; agreed to invoice SJBS for 50% of delivery of cases. Agreed to discuss with SJBS how proceeds from railway exhibition donations and book sales would be distributed.

Item 5. Planning Report (MH)

MH gave a brief update to those attending the meeting. MH will put together a planning report to circulate with the minutes. He also noted that following enquiries with Lincolnshire County Council the flood investigation report on the River Waring floods in 2019 was still being drafted so had still not been published.

IM said he had attended Horncastle Together meeting on enhancing the town and was informed that Town Council had been allocated £25,000 from the Government's "Welcome Back” Fund which uses some residual EU money to encourage people back to town centres. This would provide £5,000 for new planters, benches and litter bins; £8,780 to improve signage, restore blue plaques and create a mural, £9,600 for "deep cleaning” town centre including railings, telephone boxes, the bus stop, and areas fouled by pigeons. The latter will include one deep clean and weekly follow up cleaning of pavements. The Society has also been given what it has asked for to enhance the Joseph Banks Centre, £100 to improve signage in the Tourist Information area, £350 for a new window hanging system to highlight attractions when the TIC is closed, £670 to produce 20,000 leaflets for the relaunched centre, and £500 to promote our railway exhibition, Horncastle Heritage Open Days, and other events in the town centre.

Item 6. Upcoming Events and End of Coronavirus Restrictions

Agreed that the society needs someone to plan talks as the present programme expires at the end of the year; ideas welcomed on possible topics and speakers and there should be an agenda item for each Executive Committee meeting going forward with everyone invited to make suggestions.

AGM – agreed needed to hold as soon as practical in case of future lockdowns. It was agreed to try to organise it for the 29th September 2021 and IM to investigate use of the Tennyson Room at the Community Centre.

IM said Railway Exhibition due to open Thursday 29th July 2021 in the SJB Centre, thanked Nick Fox and his son for help hanging exhibits earlier that day, and Chris Bates for carrying out all of the research. Noted that the August issue of Railway Magazine (published by Mortons in Horncastle) would include four-page feature on the exhibition, and agreed to have display copy directing visitors to purchase one from Perkins.

Noted that a book on the exhibition was still possible, to include information, photos and images of relics brought to light by the exhibition. IM explained that in addition to the Society's exhibition, there would be an Open Weekend on the 14th-15th August with an operating model of Horncastle station produced by Simon Stuart, and a display of Mike Fowler’s railwayana from the Horncastle railway and other local lines. Mike Fowler had also confirmed he would do a talk on Friday 13th August at the Community Centre.

Noted that "Welcome Back” Fund would also pay for publicity postcards using images of the Horncastle line that had recently been rediscovered and supplied by LCLR Historic Vehicles Trust.

Item 7. Horncastle Suggestions for Local Heritage List

IM reported that the Society had been invited to suggest buildings for 'local listing' as part of a Government funded pilot project taking place across Lincolnshire. This was to encourage all the district councils to create local lists of historic buildings that although no statutorily protected as Listed buildings, were of local importance and which the community wanted to see preserved. This was being coordinated by Heritage Lincolnshire on behalf of the County Council.

IM suggested putting forward all those 'non-designated heritage assets' already suggested in the Horncastle Neighbourhood Plan, but would need to come up with more detailed supporting information as to why we thought they should quality.

MH suggested they should look beyond the Conservation Area as buildings inside already had some protection. It was suggested to also include cottages in Bowl Alley Lane opposite the primary school, pubs, Youth Centre (former Cagthorpe school), Watsons Yard, Holmeleigh cottages, the Water Mill, the Mill on Spilsby Road; Maypole House, former Great Northern Hotel, the railway gatepost in Bush Tyres’ yard; the former newspaper offices in Wharf Road.

Item 8. Sir Joseph Banks Centre and Archives - Update

MS reported a donation of £100 from a man who had asked society for photos of his mother on a trip to Skegness, to help the memory of a relative with Alzheimer’s; he had been delighted with the response and stimulus given by the photos.

MS reported on delivery of new archival pockets, which would enable pictures of Horncastle through the ages, to be displayed; they would help in preparation of exhibitions.

IM reported cooperation with JBS Centre was going well and he welcomed ideas for the official opening.

Item 9. Roman Wall – Update

IM reported that this work which had been long in preparation was now complete, subject to a few minor jobs such as works to trees and laying of turf soft capping on part of the southern wall.

The Community Centre had also received funding from the Lincolnshire Wolds Countryside Service to install interpretation boards, and IM was helping them with the content for these.

It was hoped to run tours during Heritage Open Days, and to have a proper celebration next year for all the donors and supporters once everything was finished.

Item 10. Any other matters

Noted the new membership form designed by NF is ready and printed.

Item 11. Date of next Meeting

The date of the next meeting will be 3pm on Tuesday 7th September at the Joseph Banks Centre (inside or in the garden depending on weather).

Minutes by Chris Bates

Horncastle History & Heritage Society – Minutes of a Meeting of the Executive Committee held 3pm on Tuesday 15th June 2021 in the Manor House Garden, Horncastle

Present: Ian Marshman (IM) Chairman, Mary Silverton (MS), Michael Hieatt (MH), Nick Fox

Apologies: Trevor Butterworth (TB), Ian French (IF), and Julie Bates (JB)

Item 1. Apologies for Absence

IM accepted apologies from those members detailed above. All thanked JB for her work minute taking and wished her a speedy recovery. MS added that Julie's minutes were the best the Society had ever had. IM said he would do his best in her absence

Item 2. Approval of Executive Minutes 27/04/2021 and Matters Arising (MA):

Minutes of the previous meeting were accepted as an accurate reflection of what took place.

27/04/21 Item 3: MS reported that a kind member had donated a copy of the book on the Horncastle Canal for the Society's archive, as well as 20 other books. All thanked the member for her generosity and contribution to the Society over many years.

17/04/21 Item 4: Since the meeting it had been agreed with the Joseph Banks Society that HHHS would not have to pay a cut of any book sales at the centre.

Item 3. Correspondence

MS reported that the story about Victorian copies of the Horncastle News being found in a car park in Melton Mowbray had reached as far as New Zealand. With one expatriate getting in touch to say they remembered holiday with an aunt who ran a sweet shop on St Lawrence Street in the 1960s. All thanked Chris Bates for his tremendous work promoting the Society in the media.

MS added that following a request for help the Society now had a new Membership Secretary, Rosalind Rickard. The Committee looks forward to welcoming her at a future meeting.

IM reported that he had received a request asking that the Society apply to get Harper's Bar on South Street listed as a building of special architectural or historic interest. This was on the basis that not only had it once been the Coach & Horses pub, but the son of one of its landlords in the 19th century who had grown up there was the footballer Ambrose Langley. He had started off playing for Horncastle Town before moving to Grimsby Town, then Middlesbrough Ironopolis before settling at Sheffield Wednesday where he played over 300 games including winning the FA Cup in 1896. He went on the manage Hull City from 1905-1913. It was agreed to do further research in the Archives with view to applying. It was also noted that he could be a candidate for a future blue plaque.

Item 4. Financial Report (MS)

MS advised the balance at the end of May was £10,218. She noted that only around £330 of subscriptions from members had been received out of a total of over £700. Several people had also forgotten to update their standing order to the current rate.

Membership – Could we please remind members that membership fees are due from 1st April with single membership at £12, joint membership £15. If you haven’t already made arrangements for membership to be paid as a Standing Order then could you please consider doing this as it does cut down on a lot of admin work both for members and the Society. If however you prefer to pay by cheque could you please send these.

Item 5. Planning Report (MH)

MH gave a brief update to those attending the meeting, advising that he was now receiving a weekly planning list from East Lindsey so it was now possible to comment of applications outside of the Conservation Area. MH will put together a planning report to circulate with the minutes.

IM noted that a historic building record of Ralph Bennett house at Holmeleigh had been completed ahead of its demolition for the ELDC HQ which would begin soon. He added that the full list of planning conditions had now been published and this included one requiring ELDC to also install a scheme of heritage interpretation about the site's history to make up for demolishing one of the cottage homes which are 'heritage assets' in the Neighbourhood Plan. It was hoped that ELDC would work with the Society on the designs, and that they could be in the same style as those planned for the new town heritage trail planned with Walkers Are Welcome.

IM also commented that it looked as if something was finally happening at the Water Mill, which has now been fenced off. A teleporter had also recently appeared on site. It was not clear if this was a result of ELDC undertaking urgent works themselves or that a new owner was about to start work.

Item 6. Planning Programme of Talks

IM noted that the Prime Minister's announcement that current rules on indoor meetings would be extended means that plans to hold an AGM on 19th July cannot now go ahead. However it was agreed to continue as planned with the other talks being organised.

MS confirmed that the Admiral Rodney had reserved the dates requested for us, but that they were increasing their prices from £30 to £50 per meeting, on the basis that the room takes a lot of time to set up. It was felt that this was expensive, especially considering the amount of revenue they made from drinks bought by attendees, which could more than double those actually drinking in the bar.

IM suggested that we review the situation at the end of the year.

The current programme is therefore

· 15th September, 7:30pm, Thomas Sully (part 2) by Colin Gascoigne

· 20th October 7:30pm, Iron Age East Midlands by Mark Arnold

· 17th November, 7:30pm, Treading the Boards, Georgian Theatre in Lincolnshire – Neil Wright

It is also hoped to stage an unveiling of the Thomas Sully blue plaque erected during lockdown on the 15th September at 6:30 in the Co-op car park prior to the talk. Details to follow in due course.

Item 7. Sir Joseph Banks Centre - Update

IM reported that the centre was now open and had been well-received so far. He thanked all the Society's volunteers, without whom this would not be possible.

He added that we are still waiting for the additional cabinets that were still on order having been delayed by the situation in the Suez Canal. It was hoped that these would arrive in the next week or two as it was understood the ship would be arriving imminently. This, combined with social distancing requirements meant that not much publicity had been done so far as it was felt wise to do a 'soft launch'.

NF who has been volunteering to welcome visitors noted that it hadn’t been particularly busy so far, although visitors were coming in and giving helpful feedback.

MS noted that it had increased interest in the Society's Archives with many people sending enquiries and several new donations of material and artefacts. IM added that Paul Scott had just forwarded an email from a visitor who was a medical historian and was impressed with the displays we had produced, and sent us a copy of an academic paper he had written on local 19th century physician Dr Harrison.

IM reported that plans for a physical railway exhibition were continuing, with plans for it to run throughout August. There was also a plan to hold a special open weekend on the 14th and 15th August when railway expert Mike Fowler was hoping to bring a range of railway artefacts from his own collection and those of his contacts, as well as a model of Horncastle station which has recently been made by a local man. Mike Fowler had also offered to do a new talk on the Friday night. Following discussion it was agreed to investigate accommodation for our guest as he was travelling up from Bedfordshire and giving up his time without asking for anything in return.

Item 8. Roman Wall – Update

IM reported that the main work to conserve the wall had finished last week although a number of smaller jobs remained outstanding and would take further discussions with neighbours and other stakeholders to resolve. The turf for 'soft capping' the wall at St Mary's Square was also now not going to be laid until the autumn in order to try to avoid it perishing in the summer heat. He added that a team from the University of Lincoln were also on site today carrying out a 3D laser scan of the Roman wall, which would mean it could be shown to more people and studied by more people as neither section has ever been properly recorded until now.

MS noted that the videos IM had made as updates on the Roman wall project and shared on the Society' Facebook page were good and suggested they be added to our website.

Following the meeting the Committee went to look at the wall beneath the Community Centre on Manor House Street to see the improvements made. Members are invited to take a look through the fence from Manor House Street and see for themselves.

Item 9. Ideas for Projects to Enhance the Town's Rivers

IM asked the Committee for their ideas on this subject as he was aware that there has been an interest in doing more with the rivers which are an under-appreciated asset for the town. He had discussed it with other members of Horncastle Together and wanted to suggest that a sub-group of Horncastle Together be set up to consider ideas to enhance the rivers. MH also runs Horncastle River Care had already expressed and interest, as had Bob Wayne who wasn’t present today, as well as Gail Dymoke from Walkers Are Welcome and Jade Oliver from the Lincolnshire Wildlife Trust. He added that a visit from Lincolnshire Rivers Trust was pencilled in for the 23rd June to discuss what kinds of measures could be taken.

Ideas discussed included:

· New bridges to link up footpaths and green spaces and encourage walking and cycling.

· Improvements to Coronation Walk (such as paving the footpath etc).

· Investigating raising the water level in summer to make canoeing, rowing, punting etc. easier.

· Installing portage steps to improve access to the water in the town, and in the former canal locks so they are navigable to canoeists even if it is unfeasible to reopen to full sized boats.

· Information boards about river and canal heritage (such as The Floods and the Canal)

· Mooring a boat in the South Basin or on land nearby, perhaps as a floating cafe

· Paving or at least cutting grass on riverside path on the land behind Tesco which belongs to ELDC and is meant to be managed as 'amenity land'. This is currently not signposted either, so many don’t know it is there.

Members are encouraged to send any ideas they have to improve the rivers. Anyone interested in being part of the subgroup to explore ideas in more detail should get in touch.

Item 10. Any other matters

NF showed the committee an idea for a new membership leaflet to promote the Society. It was agreed that this was a great improvement on the basic form used previously and would help attract visitors to the Joseph Banks Centre to pick up a leaflet.

IM reported that between meetings he had attended a 3 hour workshop led by an expert from the Government's High Street Task Force about the future of Horncastle. ELDC had put Horncastle forward following the interest from the community and businesses in the previous Vital & Viable initiative. Unfortunately she had not been able to visit because of the pandemic but she had previously done a lot of work in the county and had visited the town before. Her initial conclusions that Horncastle needs its own tourism website, and a joined up vision about what it wanted to be and to achieve, as well as more events to encourage people into town were all sensible. It was understood that the meeting was the start of a process and could lead to further advice, guidance and mentoring depending on what ELDC and the Town Council agree are the area's most needed to improve.

IM also noted that he had been to a meeting with ELDC about creating a mural for the Post Office wall on St Lawrence Street. It was however understood that unfortunately the Post Office/Royal Mail in London have refused to give their permission to ELDC. The Committee suggested Achurch Walk (between Co-op and the High Street), and the side of No. 6 Market Place (the vacant building between Perkins and the zebra crossing) as alternatives.

MS asked if any member might be interested in adopting the Society's planter on Conging Street near the bridge to Tesco.

Item 10. Date of next Meeting

The date of the next meeting will be 3pm on Tuesday 27th July at the Joseph Banks Centre (inside or in the garden depending on weather).

Minutes by Ian Marshman

Horncastle History & Heritage Society – Minutes of a Meeting of the Executive Committee held 3pm on Tuesday 27th April 2021 via Zoom 

Present: Ian Marshman (IM) Chairman, Mary Silverton (MS), Michael Hieatt (MH),  Ian French (IF) and Julie Bates (JB) Minutes Secretary.  

Apologies: Nick Fox (NF) and Trevor Butterworth (TB)  

Item 1. Apologies for Absence 

IM accepted apologies from those members detailed above.  

Item 2. Approval of Executive Minutes 16/03/21 and Matters Arising (MA): Minutes of the previous meeting were accepted as an accurate reflection of what took place. 

16/03/21 Item 7: Marking the 50th Anniversary of the Railway Closing – IM advised that  the railway virtual exhibition had been launched on the new joint site for the Joseph Banks  Centre and had been very well received with lots of positive comments. Unfortunately a  counter had not been set ahead of the launch to calculate how many visits the site had  received but IM was looking into a way of calculating this. CB had done a fantastic job  getting coverage for the event with an article in Lincolnshire Life as well as many local  newspapers. It was still hoped that we would be able to have a live exhibition on this subject at the JBC in August. 

Following our appeals for information of the whereabouts of the model railway built by  Captain Tweed it has been suggested that the model was taken to the primary school when  the children were studying the Victorian era and left behind for the children. It is thought that the model continued to be used and various school caretakers carried out running repairs  over the years until eventually it was put into a storage area beneath the water tower which  leaked – so sadly, the model railway is no more. Whilst we have no reason to question this  theory it would be great to hear from anyone who remembers a train set being used in  lessons at the school in the early 2000s. 

A further result from the publicity for the event was that IM received a private invitation to visit a property in the locality which was being renovated around the time the railway was closed.  The platform paving stones were purchased at the time and used to pave around the  renovated property as well as create a paved courtyard area. IM, accompanied by CB and  JB, had been able to arrange to visit the property and were made extremely welcome and  were also able to look at other historical factors of the property as well as historical  documents.  

IM had received a poster from the Woodhall Cottage Museum advertising a talk being given  via Zoom by Alan Stennett on 11th May – it was agreed to circulate the poster when sending  out the minutes. 

IM would still like to hold a live railway exhibition in August. We have also been offered a  special visit of a new model of Horncastle station for the weekend of 14th and 15th August.

Item 3. Correspondence 

A member had been in touch following the previous meeting with information about a book  on the subject of the Horncastle canal. They had been surprised to learn that we didn’t  already have this book in our collection and have very generously not only offered this but  their collection of books on the history of Horncastle for our archive. All agreed that this  incredibly generous donation. 

IM had received an email suggesting a ‘Tommy’ statue (the silhouette soldier statues  available from the British Legion) could be placed by the horses and other approaches into  the town. Discussion took place and all agreed that it would not be appropriate to have this  in the same area as the horse statues as this would probably give the impression that they  were war horses rather than representing the historical significance of the horse fair. The  group suggested other venues where this type of statue could be placed such as Stanhope  Hall, near the war memorial benches or Hospital – one could also be placed on the grass  near the other traffic lights with West Street as this could represent Tommy on his way to or  from the railway station returning from the war. 

IM felt that the person enquiring was seeking support and advice on how to do this rather  than a direct request for us to do it and it was agreed that IM would respond advising that  planning permission would be required from ELDC and LCC Highways and IM would also  pass this on to the Town Council and Horncastle branch of the British Legion. 

Item 4. Financial Report (MS) 

MS advised the end of year balance was £12,060.90 but there was an outstanding payment  of £1,762.56 to be deducted from this total as the cheque in relation to this payment was still  to clear. 

MS is still to complete formal paperwork but has carried out a bank reconciliation and  everything balances. She advised that she has had to increase our insurance cover which  has cost approximately £100 but this gives us £5k cover plus liability cover for all our  activities and volunteers as well as fully covering our computers etc. 

MS raised the need to create a budget for the Society which has not been updated for a  number of years. Based on the VE Day and also the Railway – note CB has made the  Society aware of a book already published on the Horncastle Railway which could be sold  with profits going to the Society and it was perhaps also possible to create a booklet on the  social aspect of the railway to include material gathered for and as a result of the exhibition.  MS pointed out we potentially have two further books which are already written and sitting in  our archives which were never published – we would need to check any copyright on these  and they would need editing and bringing up to date if we were to use these. 

It was pointed out that JBC would take a hefty percentage of any books sold from the  premises which was a little excessive especially if no postal costs were incurred. We need  to raise funds through sales in order to pay the rent and this was a barrier to doing that. IM  agreed to speak with Joseph Banks Society on this matter. It was also agreed to include a  section in the next newsletter on the subject of leaving a legacy to the Society explaining  how this can be done and how it can benefit the Society and town for years to come.

Item 5. Planning Report (MH) 

MH advised that Emilie Wales, Conservation Officer at ELDC had eventually emailed in  relation to a request for information on the condition of a number of historic buildings of  concern including No 6 Market Place (next to Perkins), the East Street/Queen Street Chapel, Water Mill and Post Office. He went on to give a brief update of existing planning  applications to those attending the meeting and will produce a Planning Report to circulate  with these minutes. He added that a further application had been received in relation to the  Friskney Site who were seeking permission for new advertising signage. 

Item 6. Planning a Programme of Talks 

IM advised that he has paid for a Zoom account to ensure that these Executive meetings  and any future public meetings if necessary can be held without having a time limit. This  account can be stopped at any time without penalty and is paid for in monthly instalments.  

MS felt it should be possible to hold a live AGM in July and hold monthly rather than two  monthly meetings in September, October and November. She was also keen that we  should arrange a Christmas event more ambitious than in recent years and arranging a  venue with professional catering and entertainment rather than trying to run an event  ourselves. 

Discussion took place over the benefits or otherwise of holding live meetings. IM  understood that some organisations had received a lot more attendees to Zoom meetings  than they would usually have attending live meetings but we had only had 15 at our pilot  event. MS pointed out that these were much larger organisations with membership spread  over a significant distance. With a few exceptions our membership is much more  concentrated and it was felt that a significant number of members would feel excluded if  meetings took place on Zoom and many valued the social side as much as the talk .  Obviously if Government restrictions continued to stop live meetings taking place then this  system could be used but if there was a way to hold a live meeting it was agreed we should  do so.  

It was agreed to leave the Special General Meeting until normal times return but on the  basis of the current roadmap out of lockdown that we would hold a live AGM on 14th July at  7pm and arrange ordinary meetings for 15th September, 20th October and 17th November.  MS added we have plenty of speakers ready to give talks and she would look into which  venues would be possible and would also make enquiries about a possible venue and  provider for our Christmas party this year. IM added that if we were not able to secure a  location for this year we could at least offer mulled wine and mince pies at the new JBC! 

Item 7. Sir Joseph Banks Centre – Reopening and Volunteers 

IM advised that display cases have been ordered and 60% of the cost has been paid up  front. Delivery is expensive but we did know this and are splitting the cost with SJBC. The  wallpaper map has arrived but IM is struggling to get a qualified decorator to hang this. MH  was happy to help but still felt it would be better to have this done professionally if we can –  do any of our members have an experienced decorator we can borrow??? IM had  decided it would be better to try to put some of our archive material onto a touch screen  computer and try this out using existing JBC equipment before committing to buying such  equipment ourselves.

IM had discussed opening hours with Paul Scott who had suggested Thursdays, Fridays,  Saturdays and then try summer Sundays and possibly Bank Holidays. All of the would  depend on volunteers being willing and able to help. MS added that she had agreed with  archive volunteers that the archive would be manned all day Wednesday and Thursday  mornings. She had asked the Visitor Liaison volunteers which days they would like to work  but had only had three responses but felt sure we would be able to cope with the days  suggested as the JBC also had some volunteers to help. However, MS pointed out that they  would need some training and familiarisation and it was agreed that this should take place  on the Wed, Thurs or Fri the week before we are due to open. MS reminded that lanyards  would need to be sourced also. 

IM queried how public would gain access to the archive on Wednesdays if the centre was  not open to the public - MS confirmed that Wednesdays it was anticipated it would only be  our volunteers or pre-arranged visitors who would be directed to the side door etc. 

Item 8. Roman Wall – Update 

IM had obtained a banner printed with information on what work is being done – as well as  a QR code to the Society’s website. He said the wall looks really good already but added  that the wall is covered up at night so it was advisable to take a look on Manor House Street during working hours. IM had not been able to arrange for a visit for Executive Group  members but it was felt that it would be unfair for us to visit if our members were not able to do so. IM was however hoping to film when the contractors were preparing the lime and  water mix as they make this in the same way it would have been made in Roman times and  this could be made available to view via our website. 

In addition to this, it was understood that Historic England agreed to fund laser scanning of  the site to create a 3D model of the wall. 

Item 9. Any Other Matters 

MS advised that the silhouette horses had been repainted on Tuesday and Executive gave  thanks to all those who volunteered . 

MS asked if it would be possible to organise an unveiling of the Thomas Sully blue plaque.  IM suggested doing this around the time of the second Thomas Sully talk. On the subject of  blue plaques, the small blue plaque in the bullring area was looking very dishevelled. It was  agreed to ask the Town Council to repaint or replace this (this is not one of ours) The one  outside Costa needs the lettering picking out in white as the whole plaque was painted blue.  IM would be attending the Horncastle Together meeting and ELDC will be there. It was  understood that £10k has been earmarked for long running Interpretation Boards project with Walkers Are Welcome. The were hoping to work with a student from the university to do an  internship where they would coordinate putting the boards together. 

Item 10. Date of next Meeting 

The next meeting to be held on Tuesday 15th June at 3 pm and will be held outdoors at The  Manor House weather and restrictions permitting, otherwise can be held via Zoom. 

Julie Bates, Executive Committee Minutes Secretary

MInutes of meeting 16th March 2021
Executive meeting via Zoom

Horncastle History & Heritage Society – Minutes of a Meeting of the Executive Committee held 3pm on Tuesday 16th March 2021 via Zoom

Present: Ian Marshman (IM) Chairman, Mary Silverton (MS), Michael Hieatt (MH), Ian French (IF), Bob Wayne (BW), and Julie Bates (JB) Minutes Secretary. Chris Bates (CB) attended briefly to update on Item 6 below.

Apologies: Nick Fox (NF) and Trevor Butterworth (TB)

Item 1. Apologies for Absence

IM accepted apologies from those members detailed above.

Item 2. Approval of Executive Minutes 16/02/21 and Matters Arising (MA):

Minutes of the previous meeting were accepted as an accurate reflection of what took place.

16/02/21 Item 3.1: IM had been successful in exchanging the $25 NZ received for a copy of the Mareham Le Fen book. With the current exchange rate he had obtained £11 which easily covers the cost of the book and postage costs. MS confirmed she had sent the book on its voyage.
16/03/21 Item 4: Internet Banking – MS advised she had put off investigating internet banking for the time being as this was not as straight forward as she hoped it might be.

Item 3. Correspondence

MS felt there was a need to tighten up the procedure around new membership welcome packs as we certainly don’t want to be in the situation whereby we are losing new or potential members because of an uncoordinated system.

Item 4. Financial Report (MS)

MS advised the balance at the end of February was £12,223.21. She was expecting that in the region of £50 would come in and £250 out by the end of this financial year, adding that she has received all outstanding expenses claims.

A total of £122 had been raised from selling furniture from Watson’s Yard which will help balance additional insurance costs. MS has sent insurers an update of requirements in advance of the renewal date of 1st April and expects insurance costs to increase.

Membership – Could we please remind members that membership fees are due from 1st April with single membership at £12, joint membership £15. If you haven’t already made arrangements for membership to be paid as a Standing Order then could you please consider doing this as it does cut down on a lot of admin work both for members and the Society. If however you prefer to pay by cheque could you please send cheques from 1st April onwards.

Item 5. Planning Report (MH)

MH gave a brief update to those attending the meeting advising that despite lockdown, planning applications were still coming through and needed to be followed up/checked etc. East Lindsey are now giving us a copy of their whole weekly list for planning applications and whilst it took time to sort out those which only related to Horncastle, it was still a great improvement on not receiving notification at all. Following comments on the amount of blue cladding on the proposed refurbishment of the Friskney site, noting that blue and yellow were the company colours, MH felt that rather than make a formal objection it may be better to ask if the amount of blue could be reduced. He noted that there was no mention on the plans as to what type of fencing and other general signage such as ‘deliveries’ etc to be used. MH will put together a planning report to circulate with the minutes.

Item 6. Sir Joseph Banks Centre - Update

MS advised the group that there had been a fantastic response to our request for volunteers with eight people putting themselves forward to get involved working on the Archives, four people have volunteered to work on Exhibition and Displays and nine people with a possible tenth person wishing to get involved with Visitor Liaison and welcoming visitors to the centre and chatting to them about the town and its history. It was agreed we should look to obtain some name badges for our volunteers. All agreed these should carry the full name of the society rather than just the initials and that a lanyard type badge would probably be the most visible, with a different colour for our volunteers and those from the JBS. It may be useful to have a type of badge with a removable card insert whereby any volunteer could insert a card with their name. MS would look into what was available. Our thanks go to all those putting themselves forward and any further volunteers would always be made welcome.

IM advised that he has had a problem sourcing the display cases, adding that this was not Brexit related! The company providing the cabinets is basically out of stock owing to the number of shops that have been renovating during lockdown and, on getting close to re-opening, need to spend grant monies. It was likely to be around 18 May before we can get our display cases and will need to share with the nature section for the time being.

Wallpaper Map - large copy of our 1887 map of Horncastle on special hard wearing 'wallpaper' for the wall between the two internal doorways (wrapping around the sides) has now been ordered and will cost £174 (£37 less than original quote). IM has been advised that this will need to be hung using heavy duty wall paper paste. With the cost of the wallpaper map all agreed that we should seek a competent person to hang this using the correct materials. If any of our members is a decorator and feels able to volunteer to do this or if anyone can recommend a good decorator then please let us know.

IM had been speaking with Paul Scott and Trevor Olsson of the Joseph Banks Society and have possibly come to some agreements over a logo for the centre, this will use a simplified version of the silhouette of Joseph Banks which was used on the previous JBS logo. It was also agreed to emphasise the purposes of the centre for local heritage and natural history since not all visitors would know who Sir Joseph was. IM will circulate suggested logos to the Executive Group for comment following the meeting.

Item 7. Marking the 50th Anniversary of the Railway Closing - Update

The group extended its thanks to Chris Bates (CB) for the tremendous amount of work he has done on this project, as well as publicity both locally and nationally. In turn, CB wished to thank everyone who had helped, adding that as a result of the story being published in Horncastle Matters lots of people have come forward with new information. CB felt it would be worth putting a further release round ahead of the virtual exhibition.

IM advised that HHHS and SJBC are currently building a joint site for the relaunched Joseph Banks Centre, which will be able to act as a platform for this and other virtual exhibitions, adding that he has got a link on this platform for the railway exhibition to go even though the site is still being built. This platform will be launched as soon as we need it to be. It also has some information about the Society with a link to our own website and information about visiting our archives and collections catalogues etc. It is work in progress but it will be completed soon and we can then add a link to this from our website.

All agreed that there was certainly sufficient information to put together a booklet or small book. CB understood that the Lincolnshire Wolds Railway had produced a booklet on Horncastle 2 – 3 years ago but that if we were to produce a booklet or a small book then ours would focus more on the history of the line and local economy etc rather than just another railway book. MS was aware of a volunteer who has published several books in the past and is eager to get involved. IM felt we should be thinking of something around A5 size selling for around £5. On the subject of booklets, IM advised that 3,000 copies of the new Spa Trail leaflet has now arrived and looks very good. This has been funded by Lincolnshire County Council's Countryside Service. Hopefully this will help to promote it to visitors and encourage them to explore its sculptures and history panels, as well as visit both Horncastle and Woodhall Spa. There has never been any leaflet or map for the Spa Trail before as there was no money left for it when work finished on building the trail itself, and this may itself. It was hoped that the new leaflet would help promote the trail to tourists and new residents who may not be aware of it.

Item 8. Roman Wall – Update

At long last the work to the Roman Wall has now begun and IM hoped to be able to arrange for members of the Executive Committee to visit.

IM has received a form of words from Historic England for us to include in our press release which he will discuss with CB. IM has also been working on a short video which we could share on our Facebook Page and the Horncastle Community Facebook Page so that everyone who has sponsored stones or supported us can see the work they funded taking place. He had also seen that there is something on the Community Page with people asking what was going on and were the contractors building on the medical site etc. MH noted here seems to be a number of rumours and misinformation going around the town about what is happening with the wall and asked if it would be worth putting something in the Horncastle News. IM said we will be sending a press release round asap which should answer any concerns people have.

In the meantime IM asked if he could spend in the region of £20 to get a banner printed with information on what work is being done – as well as giving HHHS some credit for all the work carried out over many years to preserve the wall for future generations. Discussion took place as to how long ago the Society first acted and at least one letter mentioning the state of the wall and trying to get something done had come to light from 9 years ago so congratulations to everyone who has worked on this, chipping away over the years! The Society is indebted to Sheila Jonkers, Mary Silverton, Bob Wayne, and the current and previous chairmen of the Community Centre, as well as the residents of properties nearby who have supported the project. Celebration events will follow the work, whenever it is safe to do so as it will be an achievement the Society and the town should celebrate.

Item 9. Any Other Matters

IM and Paul Scott had spoken about the possibility of trying out a Zoom meeting to give a talk to members of both societies about plans for the relaunched Joseph Banks Centre. This will be at 6:00pm on Wednesday 14th April. Joining instructions will be sent out before the meeting. If this goes well it is hoped to begin planning some Zoom talks until physical meetings are allowed to resume again.

CB was keen to agree wording for a press release about the discovery of the copies of the Horncastle News dating from 1893 which were discovered abandoned in a car park in Melton Mowbray adding that these news papers will enable us to tell the story of the economy of Horncastle. It was agreed CB would copy IM into draft press releases for both this and the Roman Wall in order that wording can be agreed and the releases could be sent out as soon as we were ready. That said, it was felt that the press release for the Roman Wall needed to be circulated first in order to quell any misinformation and rumours surrounding the work being carried out on the wall and send out the release on the news papers the following week.

MH asked if there were any books on the topic of the Horncastle canal. IM was sure he had come across a small green A5 book at some point but couldn’t remember where. All agreed that the history of the canal could well be a topic for the future. BW has the report which was carried out several years ago but we were £31M short several on the funded needed to re-build the canal!

Item 10. Date of next Meeting

The date of the next meeting are still to be arranged and will be held via Zoom unless restrictions are lifted and we are able to meet in person. This was later confirmed as 3pm on Tuesday 27th April 2021, via Zoom.

Julie Bates, Executive Committee Minutes Secretary

Minutes of a Meeting of the Executive Committee held
3pm on Tuesday 16th February 2021 via Zoom
Present: Ian Marshman (IM) Chairman, Mary Silverton (MS), Ian French (IF), Bob Wayne (BW),
Trevor Butterworth (TB) and Julie Bates (JB) Minutes Secretary. Chris Bates (CB)
attended briefly to update on Item 9 below.
Apologies: Nick Fox (NF) and Michael Hieatt (MH)
Item 1. Apologies for Absence
IM accepted apologies from those members detailed above noting that MH hoped he may be able to
join the meeting later.
Item 2. Approval of Executive Minutes 14/10/20 and Matters Arising (MA):
Minutes of the previous meeting were accepted as an accurate reflection of what took place. There
were no matters arising which were not already on the agenda for discussion.
Item 3. Correspondence
3.1: We have received a letter from New Zealand enclosing $25 NZ dollars for a copy of the
Mareham Le Fen book. Its author grew up in Mareham before joining the Merchant Navy
aged 15 and settling in New Zealand. IM will take the currency to the post office to see if
this can be exchanged and will pass the letter to MS who will arrange to post a copy of the
3.2: A full run of copies of the Horncastle News in 1893 has been discovered abandoned in a car
park in Melton Mowbray. The Town Estate has kindly agreed to post them to us as a
donation to the Society. How they came to be there is a mystery! Noted that these had not
yet been received.
3.3: There has been an enquiry from the Town Council to ask if we know how Ndola Road got its
name. Ndola is the second largest city in Zambia. What link does it have with Horncastle? Its
only claim to fame seems to be that in 1961 (around the time some of these houses were
built) an air crash there led to the death of the UN's Secretary General. CB recalled writing
an article many years ago during the early years of his career in journalism about Ndola
sending a sum of money they had raised to help the people of Horncastle following a
catastrophic flood but BW said there had been a link with the church many years before the
flood, adding that the alter in Holy Trinity came from Ndola. MS would direct her attention
towards this.
3.4: We have been asked to write a letter of support for the group trying to save the Youth
Centre, including its importance as a part of the town's heritage. This also served as a
reminder of the potential for us to use the centre for exhibitions and events in future if
Item 4. Financial Report (MS)
MS advised the balance at the end of January was £12,464.23. She asked for approval for
payments of costs incurred moving the archive to the Sir Joseph Banks Centre (SJBC) advising
these were for racking, removals and stationery. MS had obtained three racks for storing archive
materials, two were on the top floor of the building. Costs associated with the move itself was £25
and approximately £100 had been spent on stationery – mainly on new files for the archive. MS
added that we had purchased the chairs in Watson’s Yard for a token sum of £32 and, as we needed
to dispose of these prior to moving to JBC, these have been sold to interested parties. Assuming the
last batch of these are collected as currently arranged, we will have received a total of £72 for these
MS was trying to investigate the possibility of using internet banking but felt it was questionable as to
if this was an option as two signatures are currently required for signing cheques. MS currently has
some of the Societies Direct Debits and Standing Orders linked to her own account that she then
needs to arrange to be refunded back to her which is not only time consuming but can be quite
difficult arranging for cheques to be signed. For clarity MS, IM and TB are the only registered
signatories for the Society accounts.
Auditor – MS advised that as we have had the same auditor for three years we now need to appoint
somebody else. She had asked the former Treasurer Ruth Addison if she or her husband would feel
able to act as auditor subject to approval. Ruth is happy to do this and the group confirmed they
would be happy to appoint Ruth Addison as the auditor.
Item 5. Planning Report (MH)
MH had intended to join this Zoom meeting but had been called away at short notice. Despite still
hoping to join the meeting later this had not been possible. His intention had been to update the
group on plans for the Friskney site for which some ‘before and after’ plans for the site had been
distributed to the group ahead of this meeting. All agreed there seemed to be quite a lot of blue
cladding and agreed that it would be preferred if this was neutral though it was noted that the
company colour scheme was blue and yellow. IM would distribute a copy of the plans for Friskney’s
site & consultation on changes to ELDC Local Plan following the meeting.
Item 6. Plans for Heritage Displays at Sir Joseph Banks Centre
We are pleased to confirm that the Memorandum of Understanding was signed and Mary & Graham
Silverton, Ian Marshman and a man with a van were able to move the Archives from Watson's Yard to
the SJBC before the third lockdown came into force in December. Mary has since unpacked
everything and it is now looking really good, just waiting for volunteers to be able to use it again.
The SJBC have now purchased cases for their part of the museum area in what had been the former
shop. We are incredibly grateful to the Town Council for their decision to honour their contribution of
£5,000 originally earmarked for the Watson's Yard heritage centre plans, which means we can also
now purchase some cases to display material from our Archives.
Since our last meeting we have also designed and printed pop-up displays on the Horse Fair and
hangman William Marwood, which were amongst the most popular topics when we consulted people
previously. This complements the display board on the Roman town already produced.
IM circulated some initial ideas for how our heritage part of the museum could be laid out ahead of
the meeting asking for comments. One item of note was that the former cash desk had already been
removed and that it is planned to reduce this to a lectern and seat for a volunteer to welcome people,
creating more space. The two cases in the middle of room could also be moved for temporary
exhibitions in the corridor gallery. One current issue is that the SJBC needs to keep some of this
space for their Love Lincs Plants Project with the Natural History Museum. However, as we don’t
actually have displays ready, this will give us room to grow in future as that project winds down.
It is proposed that we spend £2,376 (+ delivery tbc) on four illuminated display cases. One tall case
to display our artefacts, and three counter style cases for displaying material from our Archives. All
also have storage space under. IM suggested putting a photographic background on the tall case to
make it a bit more interesting, the cost would be £31.15. He also suggested printing a large copy of
our 1887 map of Horncastle on special hard wearing 'wallpaper' to the wall between the two internal
doorways (wrapping around the sides) as a backdrop to a case with some of our Victorian archive
material, at a cost of £211. We have previously talked about having a touch screen to display a
variety of our archive material, but we do not have a cost for this yet as it depends on the model.
Total proposed costs so far £2,618. IF asked if these display cases were from a British supplier as, if
not, then there may be additional costs incurred with export taxes imposed by the EU. IM wasn’t
sure but would double check, adding that SJBC had already purchased some of these cases – we
are buying ours to match what is already there. MS also commented that we need to add these
cases to our insurance as there is a value to them and the cases themselves can be replaced even if
the contents can not. She also reminded everyone that the Photographic Society had suggested
they would give us some money for a display case in order to display their items.
Item 7. Roles for Archives Volunteers
It was hoped that now vaccinations were taking place that we may have turned a corner and that
the time was right to start to encourage people to think about getting more involved. MS has
outlined some information on the different roles volunteers could help with at the new heritage
and natural science centre, when it is able to open. Please let us know if you would like to get
involved – note MS already has the names of a couple of keen volunteers but more are always
· Archiving Work
· Exhibition and Display Work
· Visitor Liaison
1) Archiving Work
This area currently falls under Mary Silverton’s responsibility.
In the past we have had up to 10 members assisting with this work, but our new room will not
permit this number, although there is another room which can normally be used. However, on
the plus side, the archive room is available for us to use 24/7, which means we can have
different teams working there on different days. Initially however I would suggest that we could
work there at any of these times:
All day Wednesday, Tuesday afternoons and Thursday mornings.
This work involves receiving, sorting and listing donations to the archives. Deciding on the
appropriate file and material and preparing the documents for input to the database.
Maintaining and improving the files of documents and photographs. Some volunteers will
have specific areas of responsibility and you will be trained as you go along.
This is really interesting work and invites you to discover amazing and interesting facts about
the town and its people. There is usually a fun and social atmosphere.
2) Exhibition and Display Work
This area will fall under Ian Marshman’s responsibility.
One or two volunteers will be needed to work with Ian to mount various exhibitions and
change displays using material from the archives. It would be useful if the volunteers had
some experience of display work using both traditional formats and modern media, although
help and guidance is readily available.
It is necessary liaise with the archivist on subject matters and decide when and what changes
are made to displays. The archivist should provide the relevant materials for displays and
exhibitions but the Display team will work to research and present the actual displays in an
attractive and informative way.
Volunteers are also very welcome to help with specific exhibitions as and when the topic is of
3) Visitor Liaison
This work will cover both the History and Heritage display area and the Natural Science
display area which adjoin each other and coverage will probably be arranged jointly through
HHHS and SJB. The Centre also hosts Horncastle's Tourist Information Centre, so it will be a
nice opportunity to meet new people and help them find out the attractions of our lovely town.
It is anticipated that the centre will be open from 10am to 4pm excluding Wednesday but
including Saturday. It is hoped that volunteers will cover either a morning or afternoon, but this
is flexible.
The work will be to make visitors feel welcome and help with their enquiries where possible.
Queries can be referred to staff working in the building, or notes taken for later contact.
Familiarisation with the contents of the displays will be provided, but don’t worry volunteers
are not expected to be experts! Archive material can be made available to visitors under
supervision. Archivist or Display volunteers can work in this area in a dual capacity. Leaflets
for the societies will be available and encouragement could be given to visitors to purchase
books or pick up a walk leaflet about subjects that interest them etc.
Item 8. Should we resume our talks using Zoom?
With the lockdown looking to continue for some time and no immediate end in sight for social
distancing rules, the question was asked if we should have a go at using Zoom to run our talks?
In order to hold meetings longer than 40 minutes with up to 100 attendees we would need to buy a
'Pro' version of Zoom, for £119.90 annually or £11.99 monthly (note that you can cancel at any
time). This compares relatively well with hire of the Admiral Rodney. There is a system called
'Eventbrite' which we could use to automatically deal with bookings for attendees (sending people a
link to Zoom). They charge 3.5% + £0.49 on any ticket sales. So if we kept prices at £2 for members
and £4 for non-members we would receive £1.33 and £3.24 respectively. It was understood that the
Society for Lincolnshire History & Archaeology has recently started doing their meetings using
Zoom, attracting 90 people (considerably more than attended in person). However they have now
started to charge £3 for tickets (also using Eventbrite) and it isn’t yet clear if demand will stay the
same now it is no longer free.
It was agreed to take a monthly subscription for the ‘Pro’ version of Zoom and perhaps do a trial run.
Then if this goes well then we have received an offer to deliver a Zoom talk from Mike Arnold, who
was due to be our next speaker before the talks were cancelled last year and IM said he would be
happy to do a ‘paid for’ talk on the Roman Wall later.
There are issues that some of our older members may feel excluded that we need to give some
thought about. One possible solution might be to record the talk onto a DVD that we could loan to
anyone interested who wasn’t able to use Zoom.
Item 9. Marking the 50th Anniversary of the Railway Closing - Update
Chris Bates (CB) has done a tremendous amount of work on this, including with publicity both locally
and nationally. We have been trying to locate a lost model of the station from the old Horncastle
Museum, but sadly despite publicity we've drawn a blank.
CB has drafted information for the exhibition so we are well prepared. IM has also purchased a few
small items for display which will be donated to the Archives. IM felt that we ought to try to put on a
physical exhibition in the summer (August-September time?) at the SJBC, as once it can open we
need to do all we can make use of it and encourage visitors adding that we also need to try to
generate some donations if we are to make it sustainable. He felt that if it becomes clear opening is
impossible we could do another online exhibition but pointed out there are copyright issues about
reproducing some images online, and it also makes it hard for us to generate any revenue. A virtual
exhibition though would undoubtedly reach more people, as found with the one for Virtual VE Day.
CB however felt that we should look to creating a virtual exhibition a few weeks before Easter – 5th
April being the anniversary of the closure of the railway. He felt that this would act as a flag to
anything we can do later in the year whilst giving something to our members in the meantime. He
also updated the meeting that he had written up 95% of the information for the event and a possible
booklet. He had also recently identified an old Great Northern train ticket from Horncastle to
Willoughby and has permission to use images of this and other tickets in the collection without
charge. IM pointed out that the VE Day virtual exhibition website had been set up at a reduced
introductory charge and was unsure of the cost of setting up a further site but would look into
possibly re-badging the VE Day site as a general virtual exhibition site and then put both the VE Day
and Railway exhibition on this site – however he pointed out that he would need help from
somebody more web site technology minded to do this. Hopefully by Easter we should know when
lockdown is likely to be lifted and work towards putting on an exhibition in SJBC as soon as we are
able to do so.
TB suggested that whilst he wasn’t one of them, there were still a number of local residents that
used the railway. IM advised we had already appealed to our membership for people to share their
memories of the railway but have had little response. TB agreed to approach people he knows
asking for their memories – CB is happy to chat with anyone volunteering information.
BW added that a contact of his in Lincoln had told him that his father had been involved with the
railway and has provided a photograph of him in railway uniform - BW will drop this into SJBC.
Ian M has also asked Lincolnshire County Council's countryside team to fund a new leaflet for the
Spa Trail as a railway walk. Apparently the trail has never had a leaflet as money ran out building it,
so this would help to promote it to visitors and encourage them to explore its sculptures and history
panels, as well as visit both Horncastle and Woodhall Spa.
10. Roman Wall – Update
At long last the work to the Roman Wall is now scheduled to start in March 2021. A pre-start
meeting was held last week, which IM was unable to attend in order to keep numbers down.
However, he understands it went very well and things are in place to start, provided there are no
unexpected new restrictions or other issues to contend with.
We were originally meant to be holding open days so that the public could speak to the contractors
and find out more about the work they are doing. This obviously cannot happen now to protect both
staff and visitors, so IM has suggested we try to film a few short clips which we could share on our
Facebook Page and the Horncastle Community Facebook Page so that everyone who has
sponsored stones or supported us can see the work they funded taking place.
It has been a very long road indeed to reach this point. The Society is indebted to Sheila Jonkers,
Mary Silverton, Bob Wayne, and the current and previous chairmen of the Community Centre, as
well as the residents of properties nearby who have supported the project. Celebration events will
follow the work, whenever it is safe to do so.
Item 11.Any Other Matters
Horncastle Heritage Trail Interpretation Boards. Just to note that this long running project continues,
and IM has recently taken photos of potential locations for the boards to try to set the ball rolling
around getting permission etc. This has been discussed at Horncastle Together with agreement from
the other partners, and ELDC's Conservation Officer Emilie Wales has also approved them from her
perspective of not harming the conservation area or listed buildings. The Town Council and ELDC are
still discussing what if any planning permission may be required and whether the Town Council can
grant itself 'deemed consent' and thus avoid a full application. There is also the question of funding
the boards. ELDC have allocated £50,000 in their Vital & Viable Horncastle Action Plan towards
improving "signage and interpretation". It is estimated that the boards would cost around £10k, so it is
hoped that this is something they will consider funding especially as we have already done so much
of the work for them.
Item 12. Date of next Meeting
The next meeting to be held via Zoom on Tuesday 16th March at 3pm unless restrictions are lifted and
we are able to meet in person.
Julie Bates, Executive Committee Minutes Secretary
Executive meeting 14th Oct 2020
Notes on Executive committee meeting

Minutes of a Meeting of the Executive Committee held 3pm on Wednesday 14th October 2020 at Watson’s Yard

Present: Ian Marshman (IM) Chairman, Mary Silverton (MS), Ian French (IF), Bob Wayne (BW), Michael Hieatt (MH) and Julie Bates (JB) Minutes Secretary.

Apologies: Nick Fox (NF), Ashleigh Bird (AB) and Trevor Butterworth (TB)

Item 1. Apologies for Absence

IM accepted apologies from those members detailed above.

Item 2. Approval of Executive Minutes 01/09/20 and Matters Arising (MA):

Minutes of the previous meeting were accepted as an accurate reflection of what took place.

27/07/20 Item 10 – Members suggestions to help town recover from Coronavirus: IM advised the group that he had passed on our list of suggestions to the Town Council and they had been discussed at the latest Horncastle Together meeting. He provided updates on some of the items as follows:-

Pedestrianisation of St Lawrence Street: The County Council did not agree to the pedestrianisation of St Lawrence Street but have allowed for part of the north side of the Market Place to be closed to allow cafes to put tables outside. In its present state this only appears to be of benefit to the Pop-Inn Cafe. It was understood that other outlets had been invited to put tables in this area through a speeded up pavement licencing scheme. This wasn’t ideal when compared with them being able to put tables outside their doors if St Lawrence Street had been closed, which also would have benefited the safety of pedestrians walking from Tesco and the car parks into town.

Free parking for up to 2 hours in line with Woodhall Spa and Coningsby: The Council have agreed to free parking for 1 hour in the St Lawrence Street car park, and have reduced the cost of parking there to £1 for 4 hours. There continues to be free parking for 30 minutes in the Market Place, and all day at The Wong.

Canopies for people queueing for shops: It was agreed this was a sensible idea and the Town Council will write to ELDC to ask if they could recommend somebody to repair existing canopies and to give examples of the types they would be favourable to approving in the Conservation Area. It was hoped this would make it easier for businesses to make an application.

Parking for cycles and new cycle paths: We were warned to be careful what we wished for in that the County Council have recently installed a modern style of cycle parking in the shape of a life-size neon green cartoon car (intended to show how many bikes can fit in the space of a single car), which proved to be so unpopular it was removed from several towns within days. New cycle parking was going to be provided by the County Council in Horncastle, and as these were now ‘available’ it is quite possible they might try to deposit them on us! On the plus side, it was understood that talks between the Town Council and West Ashby Parish Council have been taking place about how they might create a cycleway from West Ashby to Horncastle.

Hot Chocolate Competition: MS asked if this had been raised as she felt this would be a good novelty scheme to get people out around town. It would need to run over a number of weeks as there is only so much hot chocolate people could sample in one day. IM said it had been very well-received at the Horncastle Together meeting but that people had felt it might be best left until the spring when regulations might be being relaxed again. IM agreed to raise it with the newly formed Horncastle Traders Association who had unfortunately not attended the most recent meeting. All agreed it was an excellent idea that would raise a lot of interest.

Heritage Trail: Gail Dymoke had reported that ELDC had now printed the new town heritage trail leaflet that MS, BW and himself had been working on with Walkers Are Welcome for some time. The launch had had to be postponed due to a mix up with the Heritage Open Days brochure which had not included the event, but the leaflets were available from the Sir Joseph Banks Centre. Plans to install interpretation boards around the town to compliment the trail were still progressing and IM had attended a meeting in the churchyard with the Friends of St Mary's, the Town Council and the Rev Charles Patrick and Gail Dymoke to discuss potential designs likely to get 'Faculty' approval from the Diocese. They had also discussed some potential improvements to the churchyard as had been raised by members.

Item 3. Correspondence

MS had received an email from a film company in New Zealand who asked for permission to download a picture of William Marwood, Hangman for the British Government, adding we will be credited for this. The title of the proposed film was not known, nor if it will be shown in the UK.

MS had contacted Neil Wright who has written a book about the Theatre in Georgian Lincolnshire. He confessed that there had been an error in the book in that they had put the wrong location on the map for the theatre in Horncastle (as noticed by BW). He agreed to do a talk for us and noted that he can do theatrical talks, dressed in female period theatre costume. All felt that this would be something for us all to look forward to in the future, MS adding she has a number of suggestions for speakers going forward, not forgetting the ones which were already planned for this year which we have not been able to hold owing to current legislation.

Item 4. Financial Report (MS)

MS advised the balance on 25 September was £9,293.38 and there has been little change in that she has spent in the region of £100 on archive materials but has also paid in approximately £160.

IM handed over his completed paperwork which would allow him to be able to countersign cheques going forwards.

Item 5. Planning Report (MH)

MH apologised as he had not been able to compile a formal report ahead of the meeting but hoped to produce a report for circulation with the minutes. He updated the meeting on a number of on-going planning applications and a number of applications involving flats above shops in the Market Place. The windows and doors on the cottage at the back of the Punch House have been approved, MH commented on how nice the timber work was, even though it cannot be seen by passers-by. He hadn’t heard anything else about the application for two properties on Holt Lane which seems to have stopped short with just one property and a number of sheds which are becoming to look like they are intended to be permanent but were not as per the planning application. Work on the Fighting Cocks appears to be on hold and work seems to be intermittent on the Old Stables at the back.

IM reported that he had been asked for historic photographs of the Water Mill to be included in a publication by the national Save Britain's Heritage charity. It seems that this has been for sale for ever and previous meetings had recently Cllr Hinkins had been trying to lobby ELDC to sort it out. Vegetation has recently been cleared from around the mill and it was not clear if this had been done by the owner or organisations maintaining the river banks but it was an improvement. What was less good was that IM had heard rumours that there might soon be an application to demolish the mill, which if true would have to be strongly resisted.

It was noted that the windows had fallen out of the building behind the old bike shop in the Market Place and also that the roof had collapsed. This had left debris next to the alley from Perkins to the St Lawrence Street Car Park. IM reported this to ELDC after the meeting and has now been informed that the site has been secured, although not actually repaired.

There is an issue with pigeon droppings in the area, though an expert sent by the council said ‘there wasn’t a pigeon problem’. A return visit had been planned and MS noted that the Horncastle News today featured a story that hawks had been suggested as a solution. In order to tackle some cleanliness issues in the town (also raised by members), IM understood that the Town Council was considering paying to arrange additional street cleaning.

Item 6. Arrangements for Archives move to Sir Joseph Banks Centre (SJB)

MS advised that shortly after the last meeting we had been invited to put together a 'pop up' display in the former shop area so that the building could reopen and give a taste of what is to come. In a very short time IM and MS had put together a small display of Roman artefacts from the town with an information board and a wall of old photographs of the town. The technically minded volunteers from the SJB had helped set up a TV to besides the Roman display to play the recreation of how the town's Roman walls may have looked.

A very provisional first draft of a memorandum of understanding between the SJB and HHHS had been prepared. IM circulated copies of the draft agreement for discussion and comment and IM/MS would raise the comments below from the Executive Committee when they next meet with SJB representatives.

· We are currently referred to as Horncastle History Society (HHS) rather than Horncastle History and Heritage Society (HHHS)

· No mention of how the building will be referred to, although this might not need to go in the agreement, all agreed it was important that a name included 'Heritage Centre’ – and the new use of the centre needs to be quite clear on the outside of the building, potentially with new signage.

· Concern around the wording on the length of the agreement – agreed it should be for a minimum of 3 years

· Section 2 – no mention of the Town Archives. HHHS objectives should be the same as worded in our proposed new Constitution (on hold because of pandemic restrictions on holding an AGM/SGM).

· Item 4 should read ‘at no additional cost’

· Item 8 – would we have costs for separate business rates? – thought not but clarity needed

The question was raised when was our payment due? MS advised we would pay this one year in advance, adding that they were being very helpful, and she was sure our comments would be incorporated within this draft agreement.

MS has been back in touch with the Photographic Society who confirm they will be putting Watson’s Yard on the market. IM suggested we should give them a copy of the feasibility study which may help to give potential buyers some ideas on how to convert the property sympathetically, as well as its current condition, and that it isn’t as bad as it might appear.

Archives – MS has been looking for materials such as banners adding we could easily utilise three banners using photographs and information already collated on William Marwood, the Horse Fair and perhaps the Floods which would make the pop up space at the Sir Joseph Banks Centre look more like a Heritage Centre and reduces the need for us to display artefacts until such a time we can obtain suitable display units. MS felt we could apply to the Town Council as they had previously earmarked £5,000 funding towards a proposed Heritage Centre. MS happy to collate information for banners if IM could design what went on there. MS had looked at a number of banners available advising they ranged from £45 to £130 and it was agreed to look at mid-price range but agreed we need to keep to the same width and height as current banners - also that we should do this sooner rather than later.

Item 7. Planning future events (Thomas Sully Plaque, Railway 50th Anniversary)

Thomas Sully Plaque: Owing to the 'Rule of 6' being brought in it had not been possible to hold an unveiling ceremony. It was agreed that the plaque would simply be erected and, once this is done, send out a press release and have leaflets available in the Co-op. Vaughan and BW will arrange to erect the plaque. It could always have a formal unveiling ceremony at a later date.

Railway 50th Anniversary: Chris Bates (CB) was scheduled to meet tomorrow with Alan Stennett, a local railway historian, author and broadcaster and Patricia Duke-Cox, Chair of the Cottage Museum in Woodhall Spa and would discuss what we could do jointly with Woodhall, including talks, or what we could each do so as not to disrupt each other’s plans.

Display/Exhibition: There were currently two separate opportunities and owing to the current situation CB felt we should look at different options we would have for these. The most appropriate opportunity was that we have a number of photographs and articles about the local railway within the HHHS archive and have been offered access to private collections of railway photographs detailing Lincolnshire Railways including some previously unpublished material. CB had suggested if it was not possible to hold a live event owing to Government restrictions then this could work well if done similarly to the excellent website set up to commemorate the VE Day Anniversary earlier this year. The other opportunity was that we have been offered the loan of a national collection of railway photographs which have previously been displayed at the National Railway Museum in York. This collection is not specific to Lincolnshire and CB pointed out that this was something which could be held separately at a later date if we were unable to hold an event owing to restrictions, noting that owing to copyright we would not be able to reproduce this collection on a website.

It was agreed that we initially look to house both displays over the anniversary weekend with the additional option to invite Mike Fowler to bring along and talk about some of his collection of railway lamps and the potential of a talk given by Alan Stennett depending upon CBs forthcoming meeting. A provisional booking for the large hall at the Community Centre was made as we expect there would be on-going distancing requirements and this would give more space to operate a one way system noting that the Railway 50th Anniversary falls on the Easter weekend 2021 so it was expected the town would be busy. It was then hoped that the displays from the HHHS archive and smaller private collection of Lincolnshire Railways could then be kept on display in SJB for a few weeks following on from this.

CB had also contacted operators of a miniature railway with a view to giving rides but it was agreed it would be difficult to find a suitable location to set this up as it needed to be close to the town centre and would need to be protected overnight.

BW was still keen to look into organising a drive in movie with the Horncastle Lions, perhaps showing classic movies over two nights such as The Railway Children and the Titfield Thunderbolt. Louth Lions had already done this very successfully recently at Manby.

We invite all our members to get in touch with their memories of local railways, particularly the line between Horncastle and Woodhall Spa and let us know of any artefacts, photos or documents they would be prepared to loan or let us copy for an exhibition - There is also the potential to produce a booklet.

Item 8. Roman Wall - Update

IM advised again there was very little to update. A contractor has now been appointed but conservation works has been delayed difficulties agreeing suitable access. It was still hoped that some work might take place this year if Historic England would agree to pay the grant in this way.

Item 9. Plans for 2021 Horncastle 'Then & Now' Calendar

IM had circulated a draft calendar in advance of the meeting along with costings. The calendar format would show a photograph of the same scene in two different time periods and would measure 14 x 42 cm. It was acknowledged that prices were reduced the more notice that was given so at this time of year we perhaps didn’t have the best deal, also the larger the order, the better the price.

MS was concerned as there was already a larger ‘Horncastle Past’ calendar on sale in the town. Whilst this was in black and white it was on sale for £4.50 with £1 of sales going towards Lives and if we were to go ahead and produce a calendar we would not be able to compete with the price of this calendar. Other concerns were that there would be no Christmas Market this year, which is our main sales outlet, though it was hoped that going forward we would also be able to sell through the on-line shop at SJB. It was agreed not to proceed with this year and perhaps look to create a 2022 calendar and get these ordered early next year in order to achieve a more competitive price using the photos already organised.

Item 10. Any Other Matters

Discussion took place on how best we can continue to raise funds for the Society as well as what are we able to offer to our membership. IF pointed out that whilst we were unable to hold organised talks, this was very much taken out of our hands and all organisations had this same problem. He felt our membership fees were very reasonable and hoped members would continue to support us, adding that we still continue to provide services such as overseeing planning applications within the Conservation Area, producing and erecting blue plaques, as well as holding Executive Meetings and meetings with partners to try to improve the town, and keeping our membership informed with minutes etc. In addition to this we had produced a special website for the VE Day Anniversary and IM had also created wonderful virtual tour of the town during the Heritage Open days, and other members have continued to work hard all summer maintaining the flowers in the town.

Consideration was given to reprinting the Horncastle's Great War book to sell on SJB site, along with booklets on Thomas Sully and potentially a Railway booklet.

IM agreed to put a Newsletter together and that this could be printed and sent to all members as a way of keeping them informed and reminding them of the Society's work. BW agreed to contribute by writing something on 40 years membership – and MS suggested that a newsletter has generally been sent out in November.

MS has had a few members of the archive team working socially distanced whilst regulations permit though there are some of the team desperate to return that she has had to turn down owing to the vulnerabilities.

We would, however, like to hear from all members who would be interested in helping to greet visitors to the new nature, heritage and tourist centre at the Sir Joseph Banks Centre in the future. There will also be opportunities to help care for our Archives, to research or design exhibitions and organise events, so it was hoped there was something to interest everyone, once the current situation improves.

Item 12. Date of next Meeting

The next meeting to be held at Watson’s Yard, Horncastle on Wednesday 25th November at 3 pm.

Julie Bates, Executive Committee Minutes Secretary

Horncastle History & Heritage Society – Minutes of a Meeting of the Executive Committee held Tuesday 1st September 2020 at Watson’s Yard, Horncastle

Present: Ian Marshman (IM) Chairman, Mary Silverton (MS), Ian French (IF), Bob Wayne (BW), Ashleigh Bird (AB), Julie Bates (JB) Minutes Secretary and Michael Hieatt (MH) who was unable to attend the start of the meeting.

Apologies: Nick Fox (NF) and Trevor Butterworth (TB)

Item 1. Apologies for Absence

IM accepted apologies from those members detailed above.

Item 2. Approval of Executive Minutes 27/07/20 and Matters Arising (MA):

Minutes of the previous meeting were accepted as an accurate reflection of what took place. There were no matters arising that were not already covered on the agenda.

Item 3. Correspondence

MS had received a newsletter from Society for Lincolnshire History and Archaeology (SLHA) and reminded the group that these newsletters and magazines are available to members to look at under normal circumstances and will be accessible once restrictions are lifted etc.

IM had received an enquiry asking about Thomas & Mary Benson who lived in Horncastle in the mid 1800's, he had been butcher on West Street, and she had later been landlady of the Cross Keys on East Street/Foundry Street. MS said there would probably be some information about butchers shops in the town within the archive but pointed out that such requests are more Family History rather than the town’s history and heritage. She questioned if people were using us to gather family history information to avoid having to pay for information on some of the genealogy websites. IM added that Leicester University had scanned historical directories, including Lincolnshire from the 1800’s to WWI which is a very useful data source for researching businesses.

Another member of the public has asked if we know the whereabouts of the Manor Court Rolls for Horncastle, specifically during the 1600s. The Committee did not know the answer with Ian suggesting maybe they were in Carlisle as the Bishops of Carlisle were the Lords of the Manor.

Horncastle Matters – MS pointed out that the advert in Horncastle Matters still gives her name and her old telephone number. Chris Bates to be asked to contact them and ask this to be changes to IM’s name and phone number going forward.

Horncastle Together – IM had been advised that these meetings are going to be held once more, the next one being 14th September at 6 pm which he plans to attend.

Item 4. Financial Report (MS)

MS advised the balance on 27 July was £10,934 but there is still an outstanding uncashed cheque to the value of £1,166 being the money we received from the Tesco Roman Wall appeal which has now been made payable to the Community Centre who administer these funds. This, with other small items of income and expenditure, leaves a current balance of approximately £9,900. BW will follow up the outstanding cheque with the Community Centre which MS posted by hand.

MS and AB were still chasing a number of members for their membership fees. It was agreed they would write to the majority of these members though it was sadly agreed to remove one lapsed member who had also failed to renew membership the previous year. We appreciate we have not been able to arrange talks and visits this year which has been very much beyond our control and hope our members will continue to support us as we do rely on your memberships. Discussions on future activities will take place under Item 7.

Item 5. Planning Report (MH)

MH confirmed that regrettably the Homeleigh application had been approved on the recommendation of the Planning Committee. We do have some comfort in that whilst the demolition of the Homeleigh Cottage was approved (in order to give six car parking spaces) it was made a condition that this building cannot be demolished until such a time that the new council building has been built. This itself could well be affected depending on the outcome of the Governments request to Lincolnshire councils to work on plans for devolution involving the creation of one or more unitary authorities which would lead to the abolishment of all the individual districts including ELDC.

It was not clear who owned the surrounding land on the Homeleigh site, whether it still belonged to the County Council (CC) or if it had been sold to different groups and it was not known who was looking after the site which has been fenced off – ELDC or the CC, though it was noted that nearby residents already had concerns about the security of the site and anti-social behaviour taking place there.

MH apologised as he had not been able to circulate the full planning report following the previous meeting and would combine this with the August report. He continued to update the group on work now underway at various properties which had been stalled owing to current circumstances but noted that many projects remained stalled and there was still no action at the Health Centre site. He also noted that the application to convert Cagthorpe Hall from offices to a house have now removed the parking space from the application as this was too narrow to be practical. An application had come in to build several houses on land off Croft Street but with access along the unmade Hammerton Lane. IM noted that this area was full of Roman archaeology, and expected they would need to do some work before any permission would be granted. The state of Hammerton Lane was discussed and how a lot of work would be needed to even get access to the site as the area behind the Methodist Church was very overgrown. A full copy of the planning reports for July and August will follow.

IM reminded the group about the major Planning reform which the Government would be consulting on until end of October. He felt that we should be notified and consulted on all planning applications in Horncastle, not just those within the conservation area as large building schemes do have an impact on the town as a whole. It was noted that the housing being built up Langton Hill has now spilled over into Thimbleby and can be seen as a sprawling housing estate when approaching Horncastle from the east, and looming over the town when walking along the river. It was agreed to ask ELDC if we could be consulted on all applications going forward, even if we only commented on the applications where there were concerns.

Item 6. Future of the Archives

IM had written to the past secretary of the Photographic Society who have now confirmed we can continue to rent Watson’s Yard up until the end of the year and asked if we would like to negotiate an extended rental period in order to give us time to raise funding. IM explained that there is very little hope of us receiving the Grant we had been working towards, especially as a number of established schemes are struggling to remain afloat in the current climate. He advised them that we have received offers from three other organisations all hoping to consolidate resources and that these offers would be discussed at this Executive meeting.

MS added that the lockdown had highlighted many issues we would have faced if we had been further down the line and owned the building as our plans were very much to rent out the main room for other groups to hold activities in order to help fund the running costs. We ourselves would have been struggling financially if we had to run and maintain the building without any hope of income for a prolonged period of time. Nor was it simply a case of raising the asking price for the building but the much larger amount of money needed to bring the building up to modern standards, in good repair and eliminate damp. She had called in to check the building last week to find water pouring through the ceiling owing to a heavy downpour of rain which she had reported. During the meeting a neighbouring popped in and advised that a pane of glass has fallen out of a window which we hadn’t noticed as it was covered on the inside by a black out blind. The neighbour had kindly boarded this up and MS would notify our landlords.

IM continued to outline the proposals we had received which were discussed as follows:-

Youth Centre: Whilst annual rental costs had not been discussed, it was understood that the building still belongs to the CC. The Youth Centre is less central to the other two locations and unsure how viable this would be going forward as there was some way to go for the volunteers seeking to run it to be able to take it on and bring it up to date, as well as fund ongoing activities and equipment.

Community Centre: The Executive Group had been able to view a potential available space at the previous meeting. A rental figure hadn’t been agreed but it was understood that around £1,000 per year was the minimum that they could envisage. This annual rent would be an increase on what we currently pay but could be affordable. It would provide us with warm dry accommodation within the town centre though not in a very prominent position. However, the space isn’t very large and would require money to be spent to divide it up from other users so it could be secure. Another important issue was that we would not have our own access and it would be difficult and costly to resolve this because of the location next to the Listed church and the difference in ground level between the old school room and the churchyard outside.

Joseph Banks Centre: Noted that this offer of accommodation is based upon Joseph Banks Society (JBS) taking over the lease of the building from Joseph Banks Ltd who until recently have run a shop with paid staff in the room downstairs, alongside the Tourist Information which was provided for ELDC without any funding. The costs of running the shop were outweighing the income it generated, which was no longer sustainable, and this has led the JBS to rethink what they do with the ground floor rooms, with plans to create a natural history and education centre. We had been approached to see if the Society would consider joining this so that the displays could also include local history, which it was thought would complement their plans. Rental costs would be the same as those proposed by the Community Centre, an affordable increase (in ordinary non-coronavirus years) but with a more prominent position in the town centre.

IM and MS had met to discuss what would be on offer in terms of space allocated and restrictions etc. We would have permanent use of a 1st floor room overlooking the Bridge Cafe to store our Archives with space for two tables to do some smaller group work (this would not be exclusive use as other users would need to pass through to access a kitchen area), with additional storage space in the loft for items not needed on a regular basis, proper storage for our books downstairs in a library room. There is another larger committee room on the 1st floor which could also be used by agreement with other tenants - there is a diary to book the space, for when larger groups of volunteers work on material in the archives on a Wednesday morning. The suggestion was that we could book the room for every Wednesday morning which would allow the archive team to be split between the two rooms as there wouldn’t be sufficient space for the whole archive team to work in the smaller archive room. We would also have space in the downstairs shop area to display material from our archives to the public as had been envisaged in our Watson's Yard heritage centre plans. There is also space for temporary exhibitions in the modern link corridor, which we could make an entry charge for at weekends or evenings, but we would need to staff these and could keep any proceeds. JBS would want at least one member of HHHS to join their committee working on bringing their own collection up to modern museum standards. This was important as they need to achieve a certain level of collections standards before they will be able to borrow natural history items from other major collections to put on display. They also discussed what JBS hoped to achieve going forward and MS had questioned as their collection grows would we be pushed out? She was assured this would not be the case. This would also help us as we could work together on this as we also hoped to improve how we care for our Archives as well.

Some costs would be involved in that we would need to match display cabinets with those used by JBS and produce more professional display materials but we would be able to utilise some of the expertise of JBS volunteers in collections and in computer skills. MS said from an archives point of view it ticks all the boxes for being dry, heated etc and whilst she felt it was secure there was an acknowledgement that there would be other people walking through the area and we should have lockable cupboards to keep anything of value just as a general security measure.

It was also noted that as a joint facility with natural science collection and education, local history and the tourist information all under one roof in this historic building with the beautiful garden, it could be a real asset for the town. The Society would also benefit from being able to sell books both in the shop, and on the SJB website, and from being able to raise money from exhibitions, and the much raised profile of having a presence in the town. The SJB also hoped that our members would be interested in volunteering at the centre to welcome people to our historic town.

The Executive Committee unanimously agreed that the Joseph Banks Centre was the best option available and agreed to the move in principal, subject to clarity needed on various issues:

· Would need a formal agreement – IF suggested we would need a Licence Agreement outlining what has been agreed in terms of space and also questioned the length of the agreement. We need to know it will last and IF felt there was no point going to a lot of trouble just for one year, suggesting we should be looking at a 5 or 10 year agreement but pointing out that we would have to commit to pay rent for this period.

· BW felt we should also have some presence on the shop floor of the building, for example a desk labelled HHHS and though staffing may be an issue, it would be good to have someone on hand who was perhaps able to help with enquiries, particularly on Wednesdays.

· It was felt that such a move would raise the profile of the Society but we do need to be careful to maintain our own identity and not get absorbed into JBS.

In principal the Executive Committee agreed to pursue the option of working with the Joseph Banks Centre. There was not going to be a lot of money around for the next five years and it was agreed that different groups needed to join forces to get through these difficult times. MS asked if we should seek money from the Town Council who had committed to offer £5k towards our heritage centre plans, particularly as we would be helping to provide a resource for the whole town, adding that going forward she would like to see a dedicated budget for the archive in order to display and better preserve documentation and artefacts. Outcome from all town plans have suggested that the people want a heritage centre, and there was a great deal of support during our recent consultation. Going forward she would like to get more people involved and envisages two teams, an Archive Team and Exhibition and Display Team.

Regardless to whether or not we move to the JBC, we had agreed to loan some items of interest to fill a space in the 'pop up' museum/heritage centre now that the shop has closed.

All agreed that whilst it may look on the surface that we have done a lot of work for nothing by carrying out the feasibility study on Watson’s Yard, this study was funded and has not directly cost the Society anything other than the time of dedicated members which was to be applauded. The Executive Group is also able to use a lot of the valuable information gained from carrying out this study such as fundraising, equipment needs and have made many excellent contacts with other groups and grant organisations, with many of the ideas still able to be used in displays at the Joseph Banks Centre. The drawings prepared showing how the building could be adapted without harming it's heritage may also be helpful to the Photographic Society and may help them to sell the building. It is a lovely building and whilst it will be sad that it wouldn’t be accessible to the public if sold into private ownership, nor can the building be demolished because it is in the conservation area, so we are confident that the building will be restored and hopefully our plans could be used as inspiration for this.

Item 7. Potential to resume some Society activities

MS was keen to see us getting something organised to benefit our members, especially as we didn’t know how long restrictions would remain in place.

As the law stands at the moment up to 30 people may meet indoors and whilst this legislation was initially set for weddings etc – the wording around this also includes Community Activities and Support Groups. Based on this, MS had asked the Admiral Rodney if we would be able to rent their room as before, to which the answer was no! This is probably based upon the costs of cleaning the room before and after people have used it and this is not viable for a group like ourselves renting room only for a couple of hours (£30) as opposed to a wedding with guests dining and drinking etc.

BW felt there could be the potential of using the large hall at the Community Centre. There would have to be limited meetings with limited numbers and it was agreed to investigate how we would be able to do this, what would be the restrictions on numbers for the size of the hall and how we would fill those spaces – for example would people need to book their place in advance or would it be first come first serve? We would have to be fair to all.

IM questioned if everyone would need to wear masks and queried what happened in the cinema. AB advised that masks only needed to be worn in the foyer and whilst moving in corridors but once seated then masks may be removed.

The flowers around the town are still being looked after – a big thank you to our volunteers for all their hard work! Also we continue to monitor planning applications. Whilst we would dearly like to hold an AGM it is not feasible to do so as we cannot place a restriction on member numbers, and it was agreed that holding it electronically would be unfair as many members wouldn’t be able to take part. It was agreed that we should produce a newsletter for members.

BW asked about Heritage Open Days and asked if we had planned to do anything. IM advised that it had originally been our intention to organise a walk around Horncastle this year about how the town has changed in honour of Conservation Area's 50th anniversary. Instead he has created a digital walk. IM added that he thought Gail Dymoke had planned to launch the new town Heritage Trail developed with us, Walkers Are Welcome and ELDC, but understands this has been put off. BW queried if an organised walk was allowed? IM would look into the possibility/viability of arranging a walk.

MS advised a lot of her archive volunteers want to come back and she had agreed with one of the team to help her to look at how they could space themselves out. She asked for permission to reinstate the archive group if it was restricted to once per week maintaining 72 hours between visits and surfaces were sprayed and wiped down before and at the end of each visit as per guidelines with a record kept of those attending and everyone taking their own drinks etc, and keeping the space well ventilated. All agreed this would be acceptable and MS to proceed.

Item 8. Planning future events (Thomas Sully Plaque, Railway 50th Anniversary)

Thomas Sully Plaque: The plaque has arrived and MS brought this to show the group advising the Thomas Sully leaflets and the Mareham booklets would be ready on Friday of this week. We need to arrange to erect the plaque with a date and time for unveiling etc. MS will contact the Co-op and ask if we can stage a socially distanced event, probably a Sunday in October, and ask if we can perhaps tape off the necessary part of the car park for this. There had originally been some suggestion of providing light refreshments but unsure if this is something that can be done in the current climate. We need to give some thought as to who to invite in way of guests bearing in mind keeping numbers low. All agreed it was important to keep things happening so that members remained interested.

Railway 50th Anniversary: Chris Bates (CB) had provided a progress report updating the group with who he had approached or managed to contact to obtain support and collaboration. He also advised that the anniversary of the closure of the railway will coincide with Easter 2021. He questioned whether a continuation of coronavirus restrictions would prevent the Society staging ‘physical’ events such as exhibitions, talks and displays and if we should consider staging a ‘virtual’ exhibition such as that successfully done to mark the Horncastle VE Day anniversary. All agreed that we should work towards staging live events and could revert to virtual events if no other option.

CB had asked Alan Stennett, a local railway historian, author and broadcaster if he would be interested in giving a talk at such an event. MS added that the Cottage Museum in Woodhall Spa had also been in touch with Alan Stennett – one of the things suggested by CB was a joint event with the Cottage Museum. Our understanding was that we have received all the talks on local lines by Mike Fowler which were very popular and perhaps we could ask MF to give a talk on his collections.

CB asked how best to gather and collate information and memories from people who either worked on the railways in the district or who’s parents/family members did and may have artefacts and photographs which could be used for an exhibition. MS suggested we ask all our members to get in touch with their memories of local railways, particularly the line between Horncastle and Woodhall Spa and let us know of any artefacts, photos or documents they would be prepared to loan or copy for an exhibition. She would have some photographs in the archive and CB had also contacted a noted photographer of Lincolnshire railways. MS felt it may be possible to compile a booklet of the Social History of the Railway if enough information and memories were submitted.

Other ideas of events which could take place over the weekend of the anniversary were to arrange for a model railway or ideally a garden railway to operate giving rides – perhaps in Friskney’s yard or the garden of the Joseph Banks Centre if small enough. If not then we could perhaps approach Bush’s and the building supplies on the site of the original railway station but this was a bit far out from the town centre for visitors to walk between. BW had attended a drive in movie held at Tedder Hall, Manby Park which had been arranged by the local Lions Group and wondered if we might arrange a similar event at The Wong, perhaps screen the Titfield Thunderbolt or similar. All thought these were wonderful ideas and asked BW if he could speak with the local Lions Group to ask if they might be prepared to help organise such an event.

This has the potential to be a really good event but it was stressed that we MUST get a sub committee together to get involved with helping to put the Railway event together. All members are urged to help in any way they can and get in touch either by email or approach any member of the Executive Group direct – once we have names then we can arrange to meet or how best to keep in contact with each other but we will need to work together to make an event happen.

Spa Trail Leaflet – IM had found a version of this leaflet but it only covered a small section, not the whole route. IM will check with the County Council and ask if they will consider re-issuing this as part of the anniversary events next year.

Item 9. Roman Wall - Update

IM advised there was very little to update. Tenders have been received although a contractor had not yet been appointed and there was various paperwork with Historic England to complete. It is not known when the works will be carried as we are moving towards worsening weather it is possible it might not be started this year.

Item 10. Any Other Matters

There were no other matters raised.

Item 12. Date of next Meeting

The next meeting to be held at Watson’s Yard, Horncastle on Wednesday 14th October at 3 pm.

Julie Bates, Executive Committee Minutes Secretary

 Minutes of a Meeting of the Executive Committee held Monday 27thJuly 2020 in the Community Centre, Horncastle

Present: Ian Marshman (IM) Chairman, Michael Hieatt (MH), Mary Silverton (MS), Ian French (IF), Bob Wayne (BW), Ashleigh Bird (AB) and Julie Bates (JB) Minutes Secretary.

Apologies: Nick Fox (NF), Chris Bates (CB) and Trevor Butterworth (TB)

Item 1. Apologies for Absence

IM accepted apologies from those members detailed above.

Item 2. Approval of Executive Minutes 26/02/20 and Matters Arising (MA):

Minutes of the previous meeting were accepted as an accurate reflection of what took place with a minor spelling correction in relation to the Archive within Item 7 which should read ‘run on a shoestring’ though MS said they do have a lot of 'fun on a shoestring' whilst working on the archive!

26/02/20 Item 8 - Plans to mark 50th Anniversary of Conservation Area: MS felt it important that we got other members involved in this project and JB pointed out that we are still to identify which ‘Then’ photographs we plan to use. Once we have done this then we can appeal to our membership to go out and take some ‘Now’ photographs of the same buildings and hopefully be in a position to have a selection of each venue to choose from. IM understood the sooner we can proceed with the calendar the cheaper it will be so he will look out some ‘Then’ photographs – BW offered to help with this also as he said he probably has a photograph of every Listed building in Horncastle.

Item 3. Correspondence

MS had received the latest magazines from our membership of Lincoln Society of History and Archaeology (LSHA) which includes a feature on The Punch House in Horncastle. She reminded the group that these magazines are available to members to look at under normal circumstances and will be accessible once restrictions are lifted etc.

IM had received a letter from a Mr Roughton asking if there were any books on the history of Roughton, and whether there were any other people of the name of Roughton connected with the village. BW knew of a prominent farming family by the name of Roughton not far from Willoughby near Alford - IM would follow up on this.

Item 4. Financial Report (MS)

MS advised the balance on 26 June was £11,847 but there are outstanding uncashed cheques to the value of £2,214 - one of these being £1,166 being the money we received from the Tesco Roman Wall appeal and have now made payable to the Community Centre. This leaves a balance of approximately £9,633.

Item 5. Planning Report (MH)

MH updated the group on work underway at various properties and also advised that a planning application to convert the upper floors of Mantles into flats had been approved but with various constraints. A full copy of the planning report will follow.

It was understood that the proposed works on Horncastle College were still awaiting decision and that the campaigning charity Save Britain's Heritage had submitted a strong letter of objection to the demolition of the Holmeleigh Cottage Homes, and asked the council to reject the application. IM also noted that the Government was asking Lincolnshire councils to work on plans for devolution that would involve the creation of one or more unitary authorities (where there is only one council instead of a county and a district). This would lead to the abolishment of all of the districts including ELDC, and as such and surely it would be better to wait until the outcome of this is known before any works are carried out. It would be a travesty if public money was spent demolishing Horncastle's historic buildings only for them to left as rubble for the foreseeable future, or for the new headquarters to be built only to be abandoned in a matter of months when the councils merged. IM would write again to the leader of ELDC in view of this, though he added he had not received a response from his previous letter.

One point worth noting was that the Government had brought in new changes on planning requirements which is intended to make the process of ‘change of use’ quicker as well as being able to demolish certain buildings such as an industrial unit or block of flats without the need for permission providing you build housing on the same footprint of the demolished building (although they could be two storeys higher). MH pointed out that this would not affect much of Horncastle in that you cannot demolish without permission within a conservation area. IM noted it could however affect buildings on the industrial estate as these could be redeveloped for housing alongside the remaining industrial units, as has happened in other areas, leaving future residents in poor living conditions.

Item 6. Watson’s Yard Project and Archives

IM had written to the past secretary of the Photographic Society to explain the position we are in, in that the Grant we had been working towards would not now come to fruition. He had responded advising that he could not speak for the Trustees but asked if we would like to negotiate for a much longer extension to beyond our current lease of September 2020, as he for one did not want us to be 'homeless'.

The Executive Committee agreed that whilst with great effort we could possibly raise the £45,000 needed to buy Watson's Yard this could take several years to achieve without lottery funding. We would also have no money to make the building fit for purpose, and it was agreed it was only fair to advise the Photographic Society that, due to these insurmountable problems, we would not be able to proceed with the purchase. IM would write to this effect and ask if we may continue to rent the building beyond September up until Christmas, assuming they do not find a buyer before then. It was also agreed that we would of course continue to look after their archive as agreed.

The Executive Committee discussed the initial results of discussion with several other parties in the town who might be able to store and display the Archives. It was agreed to continue to find out further details about how any future arrangements might work in practice before any decisions could be made about their future home. It was welcomed that there were now several possibilities and the outlook was not as bleak as when the Archives had to relocate from the Joseph Banks Society a few years ago.

Item 7. Plans to mark 50th Anniversary of Railway Closure in 2021

CB had circulated a document ahead of the meeting outlining the history of the railway between Woodhall Junction and Horncastle [circulated with these minutes]. Whilst passenger services ceased in 1954, freight services continued up until April 1971. He had submitted a number of ideas on potential events and activities to mark this anniversary for discussion.

All agreed this would be a worthwhile event and it would be really good to have a joint exhibition with the Cottage Museum at Woodhall Spa who also had much material on the history of the line. MS agreed to contact them to tell them about our plans and see if it would fit with whatever plans they had for 2021. Another suggestion had been to ask Mike Fowler if he would be prepared to give a further talk on the line and perhaps loan some items for an exhibition – posters etc. It was also suggested to approach Alan Stennett on a similar basis – we could perhaps have both talks over the course of a weekend. JB advised she and CB would be meeting with Mike Fowler to collect a loaned item from him and would ask him if he would be prepared to do this. IM would love to bring a steam loco to Horncastle but felt that may be beyond the realms of possibility. JB pointed out that there are some smaller steam locos and even smaller narrow gauge locos so wouldn’t rule this out. CB to be asked to approach Morton’s to see if they might consider sponsoring something like this or to help with their contacts in the railway world. Other suggestions for events built around the railway were perhaps setting up a garden railway giving children rides around the churchyard. IM also suggested we speak to Walkers Are Welcome (of which BW is also a member) to ask if there was still a leaflet on the Spa Trail in production, and if not, to see if we could re-vamp it to encourage visitors. All agreed that CB's statement that "the line probably caries more 'passengers' today than when it closed in the 1950s" was a very interesting point, and it is good that it continues to be an asset to the town in a different way.

It was noted that all previous events and talks on the subject of the railway has generated a lot of interest at our meetings and we appeal to any of our members who are interested in helping research the history of the town's railway or with contacts in railways or model engineering to please get in touch.

Item 8. Thomas Sully Plaque – Update

MS has ordered the plaque and has asked for two quotes for the production of a leaflet – only one has come back to date which works out at £125 for 500 tri-fold leaflets – an example of which was circulated.

Item 9. Roman Wall - Update

IM explained the current situation, as there had been a delay caused by Historic England insisting that one of the three interested contractors could not accepted as they had replied after the deadline stated in a newspaper advert Invitation to Tender. Initially only two tenders were received – not surprising as there are not that many companies that specialise in Roman walls! Historic England however demanded there must be three tenders. The third application was received but this just missed the deadline, and Historic England had suggested that the whole process must start again which would delay the work until next year. IM managed to negotiate that the process should continue with the three interested parties in light of the pandemic and the urgent need to both carry out the work and support the struggling contractors who Historic England were currently offering grants to keep them in business. It was felt that it was unlikely that there would be any further interest even if we were to re-start the process and there was no public benefit in delaying and there would be no unfair trading. Unfortunately whilst this has been agreed, it had obviously still delayed things.

However IM confirmed that the three contractors are visiting the site in the following weeks to help prepare their tenders. The work may still be able to happen this year depending on the contractor's availability, and if not there is every confidence that it will happen next year – adding that we are closer than we have ever been to saving the Roman Wall!

Item 10. Members suggestions to help town recover from Coronavirus

IM reported on how on an individual basis he had proposed that previous plans agreed in the Neighbourhood Plan to pedestrianise St Lawrence Street from the Market Place to Dog Kennel Lane by revived. Noting that he now full understood what it is like trying to push a pram down narrow lanes with cars trying to get past! Others had also been calling for pedestrianising part of the Market Place to allow cafes to serve customers outside whilst maintaining social distancing, so he had tried to include a proposal for this in the plans whilst still allowing cars to park in the centre of the Market Place. From the comments he had received on his suggestion there was a roughly 70:30 split in favour from our members. Other comments/suggestions received to help the town recover are summarised below:-

· Free parking for up to 2 hours in line with Woodhall Spa and Conningsby

· More information and displays – History Boards (MS added that the council had come back to her recently on putting QR codes on historic buildings – there is an App where you enter the code and get all the information on the building etc).

· Better coordination between Councillors and Groups to help resolve issues and develop projects. (IM noted that unfortunately the Town Council had cancelled upcoming 'Horncastle Together' meetings so it was more difficult to know what others were working on or how the Society could help).

· Improve St Mary's churchyard as people were now using it more for social distanced meeting friends and family and with a few benches and planting it could be a much more welcoming and usable space. (It was noted that MH and the Friends of the Church had been working on similar plans for some time).

· Parking for cycles in the town centre and in the Market Place – this raised a point in relation to Planning – and it was noted that the Society should use our response to planning applications for bike shop/cafe to raise the issue of parking for cycles being provided MH to action

· New cycle paths, and more split space for cyclists and pedestrians to help them feel safe. Noted in particular Louth Road where very narrow pavement despite wide verges and that one requirement of the new zoo is that they have to put a pavement on the other side of the road to connect it to town. It was suggested that one side could be for pedestrians and the other for bikes. BW noted that he thought the new pavement for the zoo was only from the residential development next door to their gates, and as the development had ground to a halt, it was unclear when the full path would be built.

· Alleyway through to Perkins from St Lawrence Street Car Park could be improved to make it more welcoming and signposted as a safe route for pedestrians avoiding St Lawrence Street if it is not pedestrianised.

· Canopies for people queueing for shops – come winter people will not want to stand out in the rain waiting to be able to get into a shop, and without action their trade will suffer.

· Other ideas for encouraging visitors were a covered food court on The Backs near the Library off Wharf Road. With a covered but open area for eating/drinking as prove popular in many markets.

· One novel suggestion was a Hot Chocolate competition – all cafes to come up with their own recipe, with a map provided and be judged by the public on which one is the best – this is something a few committee members volunteered to judge! It is a good idea of the kind of event that could be planned for minimal effort and expense and that would bring people into town but not pose any issues for social distancing.

On a larger scale there was a suggestion of:

· Returning to a phased opening of the canal, with a member indicating that although it had been found that a full reopening would cost many millions of pounds, it was suggested that a phases approach be pursued as reopening for canoes could be accomplished from Dogdyke to Horncastle for minimal cost. BW noted that a grant had been applied for to install steps near the swimming pool to allow access for canoeists but had been unsuccessful so had not continued.

· Urban tree planting. IM noted that this was something the Civic Society had previously done, and in fact had been its first project in the 1960s. There were now many different grant schemes available with Forestry Commission, Woodland Trust etc all doing everything they can to plant as many trees as possible to help improve habitats and tackle climate change.

It was agreed that there were so many ideas it had not been possible to discuss them all properly and we will keep this as an agenda item for further discussion to see which the Society might be able to push forward.

Members are invited to get in touch if there is a project they feel passionate about and would like to work on. There is no shortage of excellent and achievable projects but we need your help if any of them are to be moved forward.

Item 11. Any Other Matters

Horncastle Matters: An article has been submitted for the next edition on the 50th Anniversary of Conservation Area – thanks to CB for putting this together. The deadline for the next edition after this is 30 October – one suggestion for a possible article was Selwood House.

Mareham le Fen book:
MS advised she had totally sold out of the Mareham booklet and has ordered a further 50 copies.

Planters: Thanks to everyone that helps to look after the planters, a number of members have commented on how nice they are and the Council has also commented how pleased they are with them. BW added that the Lions will be putting up flags in the town centre this weekend as part of a project to brighten up the town and make it look 'open for business'. If any other members would like to help with this, please get in touch as we could ask the Town Council to purchase additional planters if we can maintain them and make the town look even better!

Donation of artefacts: IM reported that the library had some Roman and other artefacts donated to them which had been found at the allotments. The library can’t house them and the Town Council didn’t want these to go to Lincoln and we have been asked if we can look after them. We would need to see how much there is etc before committing to looking after this. It was noted that any artefacts found on the allotments belong to the town council as landowners and should have come to them not kept or sold privately. It was agreed to write to the Town Council to ask if this could be included as a clause in their agreement for the allotment holders, as it would also encourage them to be alert for artefacts.

Item 12. Date of next Meeting

The next meeting to be held on Tuesday 1st September at 3 pm – venue to be agreed depending on current restrictions.

Julie Bates Executive Committee Minutes Secretary

Executive meeting 16th June 2020
Minutes from Executive meeting

 Minutes of a Meeting of the Executive Committee held Tuesday 16th June 2020 in the garden of the Manor House, Manor House Street, Horncastle

Present: Ian Marshman (IM) Chairman, Michael Hieatt (MH), Mary Silverton (MS), Ian French (IF), Bob Wayne (BW) and Julie Bates (JB) Minutes Secretary.

Apologies: Nick Fox (NF), Ashleigh Bird (AB) and Trevor Butterworth (TB)

Item 1. Apologies for Absence

IM accepted apologies from those members detailed above.

Item 2. Approval of Executive Minutes 26/02/20 and Matters Arising (MA):

Minutes of the previous meeting were accepted as an accurate reflection of what took place.

26/02/20 Item 8: Commemorating VE Day in May 2020: IM thanked all those who contributed to this project adding that despite not being able to hold events how we would have wished to, the VE Day website had been very successful. In total it had cost us £28.80 to set up this dedicated website and we have received 780 unique visitors to the site with a total of 3,180 hits on different pages so far. These have come from all over the world – USA, Spain, The Netherlands, France to name but a few. A suggestion was made that we may be able to make a booklet using the information gathered. IM also pointed out the publicity the Society received from having an article in the Horncastle News – JB passed on apologies on behalf of her husband who had compiled the information gathered by members in order to write up the article for the newspaper as, when published, this gave the impression that this was entirely his own work. This had certainly not been the intention and he wanted to ensure the credit went to those who had worked so hard to gather the information – his role was simply to pull it all together into an article for the paper and the website.

Item 3. Correspondence

The Society had received a request from Australia for a copy of the Mareham le Fen booklet.

IM has been contacted by the attendees of the Wong Disability Day Centre who IM had met with in relation to the Feasibility Study for Watson's Yard. They were keen to help us and were asking if we knew if we had received our grant yet.

Item 4. Financial Report (MS)

MS advised so far we have received membership renewal payments from 49 out of 118 members, adding that one person had now taken out life membership and some honorary members have now started paying membership too. We would like to thank everyone for their continued support, particularly at this difficult time, and gently remind those who are still to renew their subscriptions that they can do so by sending a cheque to either Ashleigh Bird, the Membership Secretary or to Mary, or by bank transfer to Sort Code 20-52-78 and Account No. 90481599. Don't forget that the rates are now £12 for an individual or £15 for joint membership (two members in the same household).

Whilst a very difficult subject to talk about, it was also agreed that we should give some thought to asking members to consider the Society in their Wills. This is something several charities do to raise much needed funds and even a few small donations can make all the difference to keeping the Society going and thus protecting our Heritage.

MS distributed a copy of the End of Year Accounts which have been audited and signed off by the Auditor. These accounts have been approved by the Executive Committee subject to the inability to hold an AGM at the moment, and MS will check with the Charity Commission if there are any issues with this. MS pointed out that Income and Expenditure relating to our meetings is now shown separately on the accounts and also pointed out the significant amount raised from gift aid. A copy of the accounts will be distributed with the minutes.

Following the Closing Balance of £13,255.90 with uncashed cheques to the value of £855.90 there has since been a number of large payments made in relation to the Feasibility Study, as well as a final payment received in relation to the study giving a balance at the end of April 2020 of £9,424 and balance at the end of May 2020 of £9,880. IM was keen to point out that whilst there has been a lot of cost involved in carrying out the Feasibility Study, this has all been funded by a grant specifically for this purpose and the Society has not incurred any additional costs.

Item 5. Planning Report (MH)

MH has still not received a response to this enquiry re Foundry Yard. There has still not been any attempt to build a second house as per the planning application and still not known if a separate planning request has been made to change this to include a number of metal sheds.

The new conservation officer at ELDC Emilie Wales had not got back to MH following his enquiry about the orange signage on a shop in the town, and he would follow this up with her.

A full copy of the planning report will follow.

Item 6. Coronavirus Issues for the Society and Horncastle

AGM: Firstly we would like to say we hope all our members are keeping themselves safe and well. We have been unable to arrange an AGM owing to the current circumstances and will not be able to do so until guidelines permit. The AGM will be held as soon as possible though for safety/distancing reasons we would need to find a suitable venue. It was proposed we hold a SGM at the same time in order to incorporate a vote for the new constitution. It was also agreed that it would not be fair to try to hold the meeting via electronic means as many of our members cannot use such things and would therefore be excluded.

Speakers/Talks: It was agreed we would pick up these when we can and re-book those missed for next year. MS was confident that the Thomas Sully talk would be able to go ahead at reasonable short notice but we will need to be led by science as to when this could be.

Impact on the Town: Whilst we are keen to stress members should not put themselves at risk, it was agreed that there was a civic duty upon us all to spend in local shops whenever possible. In many cases this could also be done over the phone or online, if people were not comfortable visiting in person. It is a very difficult time for shopkeepers and local businesses in general, and without our support they will not survive. It is also possible that we could lose some local businesses despite this, and it was understood that Travis Perkins were re-modelling their business, which could lead to their Horncastle shop closing. MS pointed out there had been two new businesses open up in the town during the lockdown period, both cycle shops, though the one in the old HSBC Bank building also has plans for a bikers cafe. MH queried if this should have a change of use planning application.

If members have any suggestions for things that could be done to help the town recover from the crisis, please do let us know so we can make sure we are lobbying the local authorities.

Item 7. Watson’s Yard Project and Archives

Feasibility Study: IM circulated a copy of the Feasibility Study ahead of the meeting (copy attached) and had three printed copies with him. The Feasibility Study finished on time and in budget though we were slightly late submitting the final paperwork evaluating the project. Since submitting the paperwork however we have not had any information from the Heritage Lottery Fund as to what happens next. Concerns were raised that the aftermath of the Coronavirus lockdown meant that many existing well established heritage sites, museums and attractions were on the brink of closing down and Lottery Funding may well be diverted to keeping them afloat rather than funding new projects such as ours. The National Lottery Heritage Fund has also suspended all their grant programme indefinitely (likely until at least the end of the year, and probably the financial year) in order to redirect grants to helping ongoing costs of heritage groups in difficulty. It was agreed that IM should get back in touch with our grant manager Jeremy Thackeray at the Lottery to find out what options there might be for us. The Society has until September to come up with the money to buy the building or firm plans for how we will raise it, with the Photographic Society having the potential to then grant us a rolling 3-month rolling extension.

Archive: MS explained that when the archive started this was a minor part of the Society and was run on a shoestring. She felt we need to agree it is now much bigger part of the Society's work with a group of around 8 volunteers meeting every week, and contributing to talks, publications and exhibitions. Going forward she explained that she feels the Society should budget money toward running the archive, such as for proper conservation materials and equipment, perhaps by running extra meetings and exhibitions to fund this.

Item 8. Plans to mark 50th Anniversary of Conservation Area

2020 marks the 50th anniversary of the former Lindsey County Council designating the Conservation Area to protect the historic heart of Horncastle. So far we have nothing planned in order to mark this occasion and a suggestion was made that we perhaps produce a calendar with a ‘Now and Then’ theme showing historical pictures of the town and buildings with the same up-to-date view - which in turn will give us something to sell at the Christmas Market, assuming the market will still go ahead in some form.

We have plenty of ‘Then’ and 'Now' pictures of the town but our ‘Now’ pictures themselves date back to the 1970s! So we definitely need more pictures of how things look today. Once we identify which ‘Then’ pictures we will use we could perhaps ask our members to take some up to date pictures of the same areas/buildings.

Item 9. Holmeleigh ELDC HQ Redevelopment - Update

IM wrote to ELDC to express the Society's concern of the future of the Holmeleigh site following reports in the Horncastle News which seemed to indicate that their plans for the proposed new headquarters were close to being finalised, with talk of demolishing some of the 1930s cottage homes. We had not been notified of a planning application being submitted despite reassurances from the Leader of the District Council that we would be consulted, and the fact we are usually consulted on 'major' applications in the town. Thankfully MH had noticed the application had been put in with the consultation running during lockdown meaning it was difficult for many parties to comment. Several members also contacted the Society to say they were unaware of the planning application having been submitted. Whilst the Town Council had not questioned the demolition of the cottage homes despite them being identified for protection in the Neighbourhood Plan, they had raised concerns that the Traffic Assessment for the development had been carried out during Lockdown when the roads were quiet and Banovallum School was closed. Its validity was certainly questionable!

We were able to make comments before the deadline which were acknowledged, but our letter to the Leader has gone unanswered. We did however receive an acknowledgment from the Executive Councillor in charge of Planning and Conservation, thanking us for raising our concerns but saying that he could not comment as it was a live planning application. This despite ELDC being the 'developer' as well as the decision maker.

Chris Bates (CB) sent out a press release on the matter which resulted in a large article in the Horncastle News 10 06 2020's edition -- two pages on the society's concerns and other matters relating to the proposed demolition of one of the crescent of Holmeleigh cottages, with photos etc. IM had also been invited to speak about the issue on BBC Radio Lincolnshire, and it was hoped that the coverage would encourage ELDC to rethink the demolition, which would only achieve an extra six car parking spaces.

MH noted that the plans looked to have not been thought through very well, with many trees being lost as well that could be kept with small tweaks to the design.

Item 10. Thomas Sully: approval of leaflet, blue plaque and quotations (MS)

MS has not progressed this but will speak with the Co-op in due course. IM suggested placing the order for the plaque so that we would be able to arrange for this to be erected as soon as possible once restrictions permitted.

Item 11. Roman Wall Update

IM advised there has finally been some progress. The specification has almost been agreed so the Tender process will soon be able to commence with an invitation to tender going out to conservation experts and in the Lincolnshire Echo (as required by the Historic England). We have also been told we can now go ahead and put out a press release in relation to the grant support for the project from Historic England. It is possible that the work may happen this year on the basis that the National Trust and many other conservation bodies have cancelled much of their planned works so we may be able to get the necessary experts sooner rather than later as they are looking for work.

We have received £1,166 from Tesco which will be paid direct to the Community Centre. Despite the fact we were well ahead of the other two charity boxes as far as tokens were concerned, Tesco stopped the voting because of the coronavirus just before voting closed and a decision was made nationally to split the money three ways. Thank you to all members who collected tokens and voted for us when they were doing their shopping.

IM will speak with CB re: press release.

Item 12. Any Other Matters

MS asked if anyone had anything to go into Horncastle Matters and suggested CB might be asked to put an article together on the 50th Anniversary of the Conservation Area. Another possible article could be done on Selwood House.

Chris Bates had raised that next year would see the 50th Anniversary of the Railway closing in Horncastle and IM and MS felt we should have an exhibition on this, possibly in collaboration with our friends at Woodhall Spa Cottage Museum since their collection would also likely contain much material on the line.

MH pointed out that as part of planning applications he receives there is a section on the history of the buildings in question and asked if this would be of interest to the archive. MS would welcome such information for the archive but realises the information may not be able to reproduced in exhibitions etc. because of copyright would be useful for research.

Item 13. Date of next Meeting

In light of the ever changing situation it was agreed to leave the date and venue of the next meeting to be confirmed at a later date.

Julie Bates

Executive Committee Minutes Secretary

Horncastle History & Heritage Society – Minutes of a Meeting of the Executive Committee held Wednesday 26th February 2020 at Watson’s Yard, West Street, Horncastle

Present: Ian Marshman (IM) Chairman, Michael Hieatt (MH), Mary Silverton (MS), Nick Fox (NF), Ian French (IF) and Julie Bates (JB) Minutes Secretary.

Apologies: None

Item 1. Apologies for Absence

None Received

Item 2. Approval of Executive Minutes 04/12/19 and Matters Arising (MA):

Minutes of the previous meeting were accepted as an accurate reflection of what took place.

15/01/20 Item 2: Horncastle 'Vital & Viable' Regeneration Event: IM advised this second workshop event led by ELDC was held at the Stanhope Hall on 18th February was well attended. He reported that following the first meeting businesses had got together and Horncastle once again now has a Traders Group, which will hopefully help to promote Horncastle. Following the recommendations in the Vital & Viable Horncastle Report, ELDC proposed to develop a public realm and signage strategy to improve public access and the appearance of the town through pavements, bus stops, signage etc. IM noted that it was also hoped that we could at long last move forward with interpretation boards as part of this, working with Walkers are Welcome. A lot of work has been carried out developing ideas for these boards but there has never been money available to progress producing them. It was understood that all signage would conform to the same style in way of branding for the town and Horncastle would also have its own page on a new ELDC website to promote the town to visitors. All agreed that the town does need to sell itself better, and the report recommended understanding what brought people to the town and what its unique selling point (USP) is – suggestions from the Executive Meeting included book shops, antiques, literary events and small galleries would be a good choice. Sadly it was understood that the newly formed Traders Group planned only to promote individual businesses and did not want to get involved with organising events. IM noted that all towns were being encouraged to put on events to encourage people onto the High Street but in Horncastle there was a lack of volunteers willing to help, with Horncastle Festivals now only able to put on the one annual event, the Christmas Market. Horncastle risks being overlooked and left behind if organisations cannot work together to promote it – although the VE Day plans were an example of how things could be done.

15/01/20 Item 11: Speakers – MS had already come up with a number of ideas for speakers at the previous meeting and had since thought of a few more topics – Lincolnshire dialect and also Horncastle Theatre. Sadly none of our members have so far come forward to volunteer as meeting coordinator and we once again appeal to our members for help with this. Generally somebody will suggest the topic and will provide the name and contact details for speakers, it is simply a case of slotting speakers into the date slots and getting back in touch with them closer to the date of their talk and confirm what equipment they need etc.

Whilst on the subject of speakers, JB raised the issue that we had still not received contact information for the person scheduled to speak at our November meeting. This was a speaker suggested by one of our members at the last AGM and whilst they have provided a name and suggested the November date was their preference, they have not given us any contact details so JB was unable to confirm the details etc.

Item 3. Correspondence

IM had received an email from the Society for Lincolnshire History & Archaeology asking for information on water supplies for the town, particularly before the first piped water. Specifically asking about public water pumps, conduits and specifically if there had ever been a water tower in the town. MS was confident there would be information in the archives about pumps but suggested Bob Wayne and Paul Scott might also be well placed to provide information on this.

IM had noted an article in Horncastle Matters from the Allotment Society who were looking for information. MS confirmed she had already passed on information.

Item 4. Financial Report (MS)

MS advised the last statement she had received was from the end of December 2019 which showed a balance of £12,660.50. A lot of cheques (approximately £3.5k) have been paid out during January and February mainly in relation to the feasibility study. We had also received the first two tax rebates of £83 and £72 thanks to Ruth completing all the paperwork needed to claim back Gift Aid and a big thank you to all our members who have also completed gift aid forms.

MS confirmed that the new mandate forms have still not been cleared by the bank. On chasing this she has been told that this is due to the fact that all charities are dealt with in a different way which is very time consuming and paperwork often gets held up in different sections. It was hoped this may become easier if were to become incorporated as a Charitable Incorporated Organisation (CIO). The bank suggested that if they were in receipt of a letter from both MS and Trevor Butterworth then it should be possible to at least get correspondence sent to MS for the time being.

Item 5. Planning Report (MH)

MH advised it was still very quiet at the moment in relation to planning with only two new applications, one in West Street and one in East Street, which were both for replacing timber framed windows like for like so we wouldn’t look to object to these applications.

He had queried if planning had been changed in relation to Foundry Yard as planning had been given for two houses but there currently appears to be one house and a number of metal sheds put up instead. He has still not received a response to this enquiry.

There were no further developments on Langton Hill and MH is still trying to find out some information on the flood relief scheme. It was noted that one of the new properties on the Thimbleby Hill development had been flooded during the recent storms!

A full copy of the planning report will follow.

MH and IM reported on their meeting with the new conservation officer at ELDC Emilie Wales who had visited to see the Society's plans for Watson's Yard, but then agreed to a walk around the town listening to some of our members' concerns. EW explained that her role would be different to that of her predecessor Rob Walker, with her job title being 'Historic Environment Officer'. She would be an internal consultee to the District Council, rather than a part of planning team that made decisions, this meant she would only be consulted when a planning officer felt her specialist advice was needed, with officers taking decisions based on their own judgement at other times.

IM and MH reported that EW had explained that the planning application for the building on the corner of the marketplace had been refused on the basis they had wanted to completely remove an internal staircase and in a listed building this could not be permitted. It was understood that this issue was now being re-visited and discussions were ongoing with the owner and she was confident that a way forward could be reached that didn’t require losing the whole staircase or adding an ugly external fire escape. IM and MH had pointed out the buildings painted bright green and orange on Bridge Street and asked if this contravened planning regulations within the conservation area. EW said what colour you painted your property was not considered as 'development' so unless a building was Listed it did not need permission. The Council could take action if was so bad as to harm the whole area's amenity, but were unlikely to make a fuss unless they were sure they could win a case. EW did however agree that the large orange signs were advertisements that looked to need permission, and were certainly not in keeping with the area and she would investigate.

They then visited the Water Mill which had been of concern to members and townspeople for many years. They noted that a Town Councillor had contacted ELDC to ask for it to use 'Section 215' powers to make the owner tidy it up, but received a dismissive response saying it was ‘not bad enough’ for intervention. EW felt it could be a building worthy of the Council using its powers but she explained that before it could do so it needed to look at all buildings in the immediate area and ensure that it was prioritising the worst cases (she noted other buildings in town were in a worse condition and should take precedence) – as they couldn’t force action on one building for bringing down the appearance of the area. EW also noted that she had spotted the state of the condition of the old chapel on the corner of East Street and Queen Street and had raised a case with planning enforcement.

It was noted that owing to changes in the structure of what was the conservation officer role, EW is not always consulted by planning officers. Therefore the committee agreed that the Society and our members continued to be very much the eyes and ears for the conservation area. She advised that if we noticed anything happening which we felt should be challenged that we get in touch with her.

IM raised the issue of the redevelopment of Holmeleigh, the proposed new headquarters for ELDC. He had written to the leader of the council when we first heard of the proposed move in October 2019 and to raise our concerns that the site's history be respected. We were told not to worry and that the community would be consulted, but we have not heard anything else from them. Reports in the Horncastle News seemed to indicate that plans were close to being finalised and there was talk of demolition of existing buildings as they were not economical. EW was not able to tell us more during her visit, and it was agreed MH should write to express the Society's continued concern and seek reassurance that none of the Holmeleigh cottage homes would be demolished.

Item 6. Future of Watson’s Yard Project

Update on Project: We have now received the written valuation from JH Walter which was slightly lower than anticipated and it was agreed to discuss this with the Photographic Society.

Progress had also been made with volunteers visiting other local heritage and arts centres to collect ideas. So far there have been visits to Heckington Windmill, Boston Guildhall, Bardney Heritage Centre, Caister Arts & Heritage Centre, Kirton in Lindsey Town Hall's Heritage Room, Brigg Heritage Centre, Woodhall Cottage Museum and Utterby Church (Nr Louth). A group of volunteers also visited the County Museum in Lincoln to see material in their stores from Horncastle. They were keen to support our project and would be happy to let us borrow things back from the archive for display providing we create the right conditions for preserving items. IM was disappointed that they had been unable to locate the Roman lead coffin! Support caring for Archives was also offered, and the potential to laser scan and create replicas of some artefacts that were probably too precious to be borrowed except on short loan.

Since the last meeting plans had been continued to be developed with architect Philip Hawkins. These plans had been shared with the public at our open day on February 15th which went extremely well with approximately 150 people visiting Watson's Yard and commenting on the various plans and ideas. Our thanks to everyone who helped on the day and especially to those making wonderful cakes which kept everyone smiling despite the terrible weather. Thanks were also offered to Joanna Pass from Horncastle Art Group who ran a print making workshop and Geoff Taylor from Chain Bridge Forge in Spalding who provided a demonstration of virtual reality and 3D printing models of historic buildings that proved fascinating.

Following the Condition Survey, it had been agreed with the National Lottery Heritage Fund that contingency funds could be spent on commissioning a structural engineer to inspect the roof space, which after much delay finally took place yesterday. MH had been present and reported that although there has been a few small leaks in the past the main beams appeared to be ok. We need to budget in for some smaller timbers and the ceiling to be replaced, but it looked likely that it would be possible to plaster over the surviving timber lathes, rather than removing them and installing modern plaster board. Overall, no major problems.

Outstanding tasks: At the Watson's Yard sub-committee meeting held on Monday it was agreed to pursue Option 2 which was by far the most popular option voted on at the open day (75%). Several visitors had also suggested that we should aim for Option 2 as we could always fall back to Option 1 if it became unfeasible, whereas it was harder to 'scale up'. However it was agreed by the sub-committee that we should raise concerns about the layout of the stairs with Philip Hawkins (PH) as we would prefer these to be the other way round as we wanted to avoid an unwelcoming lobby in front of the new front door. There was also something on the plans about removing a beam on Option 2 but it was noted that the ‘before’ drawing showed the beam in the wrong place so it was hoped that no beams would need to be removed. A member with significant architectural experience had sent detailed comments on the plans and reminded the Committee that the beams are of unusually large proportions and as original features they should not be ripped out lightly. The Committee also would like to ask if it is essential to have a toilet indoors as this also takes much needed space and created a further wasted lobby space – IM thought said PH had been told by ELDC that a disabled toilet should not be designated for use by able bodied people but all agreed it would seem to be very discriminating if we were to provide a new toilet indoors for the able bodied but sent disabled people outside! It was agreed to ask PH to look at these concerns and provide an updated section view for Option 2 showing how the reversed stairs and lobby would look. MS added a further suggestion a member had raised with her was that we could perhaps have the upper floor boarded out etc. and use as a storage area with the use of a substantial retractable loft ladder for the time being with the option to install a staircase in the future. IM confirmed that we have received permission from the Lottery to increase the amount spent on plans (by moving underspend between cost headings) so we can go ahead and ask PH to revise the plans and seek estimates for the work from contractors.

Following the sub-committee meeting we urgently need to collate some costing information by 6th March to help Heritage Lincolnshire model viability. This included estimating both future income and expenditure in terms of running costs (utilities, insurance, wifi, software, archive matrials etc.). Other than membership fees we would need to work out what other income we would possibly have from hire fees and visitor admissions. MS confirmed that we do charge £5 to any non-members wishing to visit the archive, but added that most people visiting at the moment were already members or took out membership at the time of accessing the archive. NF suggested we should have a donations box along with a leaflet explaining how much our annual costs are, similar to those produced by churches to encourage visitors to give more. Another thing we should talk about is asking members to remember the Society in their wills.

MS agreed to speak to the Photographic Society regarding current insurance costs and she would also look into the Society's current income and some of the potential outgoings. IM explained he was due to meet the managers of the Community Centre to get a worst case scenario of operating costs as theirs was a similar but larger building. NF and MS both agreed they would look at costs for buying display cases as it was noted that our architect or builder would not be able to cost items such as this in the plans. This should take into account that Paul Scott has got a few artefacts we might want, from the old Horncastle museum, plus we would need a case for displaying (not just storing) documents. It was agreed to try to do this by email owing to the impending deadline – IM will send out an email so people can do a ‘reply to all’.

Also outstanding is the need to call an Extraordinary General Meeting to ask our members to vote on the Society being incorporated as a CIO (see Item 7 below).

Item 7. Incorporating the Society and New Constitution

Discussion took place in relation to the draft constitution and proposed rules and under the section ‘Area of Benefit’ we had put in ‘and surrounding villages’ keeping this deliberately vague as, if we were restricted to only be able to research Horncastle itself, we wouldn’t be able to do things like the Mareham le Fen book etc. Patrick Cordingly (PC) had queried this wording as legally it was vague and open to challenge, but it was agreed that if Chattertons and the Charity Commission were happy with the wording then we should leave it that way. IM noted organisations such as the Community Centre referred to "Horncastle & District" but as there had not been a rural district since 1974, the phrase district was also unclear but had been allowed.

PC had made a number of other helpful comments that were considered. This included a comment proposing that rules could allow the Trustees/Executive Committee to appoint the Officers but MS felt strongly that members should elect Officers. It was also agreed to include a section on the role of Patron, President and Vice President to make clear what their roles were.

It was also discussed whether members should declare their interests in addition to trustees (noted by PC) but this was already in our existing constitution. It was agreed that this was needed to avoid circumstances where a member might have an interest in an issue being discussed such as a new development, so it was necessary for members to be transparent about this to avoid conflicts of interest.

The clause regarding our intentions in the event of winding up on the Archives was also discussed – we want to keep this in to help avoid the circumstance of the Photographic Society and Watson's Yard where they are forced to sell assets to donate the proceeds, when in some cases donating the assets themselves might better further the Society's objects.

MS felt the Executive Committee should be the ones making decisions but agreed a premises committee would be useful to help with day to day management if we go ahead with the Watson's Yard project. MS to come up with a form of words.

15 people have agreed to propose the motion, need 12 people at the meeting to be quorate.

[Following the meeting via email it was agreed to set the Special General Meeting on 1st April 2020, 7:30pm at Watson's Yard to ensure 28 days' notice could be given even those technically no changes to the existing constitution are being proposed.]

Item 8. Commemorating VE Day in May 2020

Following our appeal in the last meeting notes and two appeal in the Horncastle News only two people have come forward with memories of VE Day, and only one of which might be in a position to work with the children from the town's schools to record their memories. This sadly meant we probably wouldn’t be able to involve all three schools unless more people came forward, but it was noted that an appeal had only just appeared in Horncastle Matters so more volunteers may come forward with memories or photographs. MS reminded IM to get in touch with Mary Elliot who remembers dancing in the street with her sister well into the night.

NF recalled that the primary school had previously created a video, interviewing older people in care homes asking for their memories of wartime, in connection with Lincolnshire Arts Film and TV Awards. A Mr Bird was involved who is still a teacher at the school. IM would try to find out more about this as he had not been told anything about it when he met the primary school who were keen to be involved again now.

IM and Chris Bates (CB) have been working to reproduce relevant sections of the Horncastle News from VE Day and IM had created an A3 mock-up of the VE Day paper, with the idea of putting other information about the Society on the reverse side such as membership forms, Sponsor a Stone, Feasibility Study etc. CB had discovered that the local editor could also give permission for this as he had responsibility across the whole East Midlands, and he sounded favourable to the idea.

Item 9. Thomas Sully: approval of leaflet, blue plaque and quotations (MS)

Nothing to add.

Item 10. Roman Wall Update

Development work including a procurement strategy was still ongoing. IM had raised a further £250 over the last couple of weeks through giving talks, and £100 had been very kindly donated during our recent open day at Watson's Yard. The Tesco tokens are also doing very well, thanks to everyone for giving us your tokens! IM suggested doing a walk around again for Heritage Open Days in September, as it was not known what the position would be regarding the Archives so we could not commit to another exhibition.

Item 11. Setting Membership Subscriptions

Discussion took place as to whether we should increase our membership fees which have been held at the same price for the last ten years, which are £10 per individual member (£5 Junior) and £12 for a couple. Looking at how much costs have increased over the years such as insurance and postage as well as things we now need which we didn’t have ten years ago such as computer software licences and Wi-Fi it was agreed to increase the membership fees to £12 per individual (£6 Junior) and £15 per couple and resolved to re-evaluate these on a yearly basis. All Members – Please note these new membership fees and for those who pay by Standing Order, please update your Standing Order with your bank. You should be able to do this online or by contacting your bank by telephone or in person. New members who have joined since December 2019 will not be affected until April 2021 as your payment covers the new financial year as well.

Item 12. Any Other Matters

Society Outing(s): MS suggested that Brigg Museum would be a good place for a group visit. IM reminded her that he had already muted the idea of a trip to Batemans as we have been invited to visit one midweek evening by Mike Fowler to the Railway Exhibition being held there (date to be arranged between August and October). There is no reason why we can’t have more than one trip but as IM pointed out he hadn’t had any responses yet following the newsletter. Members are requested to let us know if they are interested in either or both of these trips. If we get interest then we can look to set a date.

Mareham le Fen book: MS asked for permission to have a further 50 copies of the book printed as these have all but sold out. All agreed more copies should printed and this was excellent news – well done to MS and Helen Huthwaite. Please get in touch if you would like to buy a copy!

Item 13. Date of next Meeting

The next meeting will be held on Wednesday 8th April 2020 at 3pm at Watson’s Yard, West Street, Horncastle.

Julie Bates

Executive Committee Minutes Secretary


 The Society is delighted that Dr Ian Marshman has accepted the position of Chairman of the Society. He received a unanimous vote at the meeting of the Society on the 20th November 2018.  Ian is an Archaeologist and currently works for Lincolnshire County Council as an archaeological planner.  He has a special interest in conserving the Roman Wall in the town.

Mary Silverton, on stepping down after seven years as Chairman, stated that she was pleased that under her stewardship the membership of the Society had grown from 30 to 93 members, and was now in a good position to go forward under the guidance of a forward thinking, younger person.

Chairmanship of HHHS

Horncastle History & Heritage Society – Minutes of a Meeting of the Executive Committee held Wednesday 15th January 2020 at Watson’s Yard, West Street, Horncastle

Present: Ian Marshman (IM) Chairman, Michael Hieatt (MH), Mary Silverton (MS), Nick Fox (NF), Annie Clark (AC) and Julie Bates (JB) Minutes Secretary.

Apologies: Ian French (IF) and Bob Wayne (BW)

Item 1. Apologies for Absence

IM accepted apologies from those members detailed above.

Item 2. Approval of Executive Minutes 04/12/19 and Matters Arising (MA):

Minutes of the previous meeting were accepted as an accurate reflection of what took place.

04/12/19 Item 2: Horncastle 'Vital & Viable' Regeneration Event: IM advised there is to be a further workshop led by ELDC at 6pm Tuesday 18th February at the Stanhope Hall to progress some of the suggestions from the report to regenerate and promote Horncastle. For anyone interested the full report on Horncastle written by the Chartered Institute of Place Management can be found here

04/12/19 Item 5: Planning: IM to contact and arrange to meet with the new conservation officer Emilie Wales – also noted her initials EW not EM!

04/12/19 Item 6: Christmas Party and Market Events: The Christmas party had been a successful evening with everyone enjoying themselves. As too was the Society's stall at the Christmas Market which raised in excess of £600. Thanks to all who donated chocolate for our traditional tombola and special thanks to Nick (NF) who donated proceeds from his book on the Lincolnshire Rising to the Society. For anyone unable to purchase a book on the day, NF advised they are on sale in the Joseph Banks centre. There was also a lot of interest shown and many positive comments received in relation to the Watson’s Yard project, including 3 people with memories of going to school there in the 1940s!

Item 3. Correspondence

One of our members had very kindly provided information on the WWII soldier Arthur Hunt, which IM passed on to the Belgian correspondent in whose town Arthur was buried. We now know he was a boy from the Holmeleigh Children's homes and lived with a foster family in Croft Street and worked for the grocers Lunn & Dobson before going off to war. However, as yet there is no sign of a photo of Arthur Hunt, so it was recommended that an appeal be put in the Horncastle News.

A letter had been received from one of our members that had paid their membership fees twice. JB had spoken to the member and had passed this on to MS to follow up.

Item 4. Financial Report (MS)

MS has not heard anything from the bank in relation to the change of signatories, nor the main contact changing from Ruth to Mary. Cheques signed by the new signatories have been cashed which would suggest this change has all gone ahead but MS has not received any confirmation from the bank and will contact them if she doesn’t hear anything else.

MS advised the last bank balance available to her was that of 27 November 2019 which was £15,184.51. Whilst payments of approximately £4k have been made this still leaves us with a healthy balance, not forgetting the receipt of money in excess of £600 from the Christmas market.

Item 5. Planning Report (MH)

MH advised it was still very quiet at the moment in relation to planning, adding he is getting planning application information from within the conservation area but not for the whole Horncastle area. MS understood that he would need to request this information – IM’s understanding was you can request the full list but would have to then filter out anything specific to Horncastle from the whole of the East Lindsey district but could possibly ask the Town Council for a copy of the list they receive.

MH had queried if planning has been changed in relation to Foundry Yard as planning had been given for two houses but there currently appears to be one house and a number of metal sheds put up instead. He has not yet received a response to this enquiry.

MH had chased up information from Lincolnshire County Council on the Langton Hill development as he hadn’t received a response to his previous requests for a copy of the drainage system plans for Langton Hill and results of the flood relief scheme following the July flooding. Of particular concern is what happens to excess flow from the attenuation ponds on Langton Hill as the plans MH was provided with only show the water as coming off the site but not where it goes.

Whilst we had objected to a planning application to replace the rear windows of the almshouses with upvc, this had been approved and there is now a further application for a property in Queen Street to replace rear windows with upvc though it is understood that there is already upvc windows installed on this particular property, and their proposal was for a design that was in a more traditional form.

It is understood that the County Council 2020 budget plans to invest in and expansion to the Horncastle industrial estate. There would also be funding to improve pinch points on the A158 'Lincolnshire Coastal Highway', but there was no indication if there would be any improvements in the town now that a bypass had again been ruled out.

A full copy of the planning report will follow.

Item 6. Future of Watson’s Yard Project

Update on Project: A meeting has taken place before Christmas involving our architect Philip Hawkins (PH) and Heritage Lincolnshire at which we were able to come up with two sensible options for the building. Option 1 is to have no major building work, other than reinstate the front door as all agreed this was a relatively simple but very useful improvement, as well as a number of interior alterations such as heating, lighting, panelling, and storage and display cases for the archives. Option 2 had more major works, with the creation of a staircase to the first floor which had once been the teacher's bedroom and reinstating the dormer windows to make use of the upper floor. The Group were able to view and discuss the drawings and raised a number of queries which we hope PH will be able to address.

We are still awaiting the written valuation from JH Walter. They have now been paid for this and it is hoped we should receive the valuation soon once the surveyor returns from holiday on the 20th January.

MS and IM met with the residents of Watson’s yard yesterday, which was very positive. Generally our neighbours were happy that it might be us that buys the property, and the only concerns raised were those of security and noise if the building was hired out. We agreed that the building should not be used for anything involving loud music or noisy events such as music lessons or discos and MS agreed to put a few words together in the new 'rules' to reflect that if we do buy the building then activities should be for 'quiet enjoyment'. The residents don’t have any major issues with our plans to improve the footpath to the building if we can fund the works, but have said they want to retain the stone paving (definitely not tarmac over) and would also prefer foot lights rather than down lighting or lanterns stuck in the ground – if the lighting was motion activated then this could also be a security feature.

Plans for public exhibition of options for reconfiguring the building: IM explained that our funding bid had included that we would set up an exhibition in order to show the options for the building to the public. He noted that as plans can be a bit tricky for people to understand without an explanation, so he suggested we could come up with some 'mood boards' showing examples of materials, equipment and displays might look like –such as examples of panelling and window shutters. MS noted that she had only today discovered some photographs taken in the 1960s by the Photographic Society showing the original panelling where the peg boarding is now on the walls, and it is hoped that this will mean we can accurately recreate it. It was agreed this exhibition should take place early February and a date was set at Saturday 15th February, 10.00 – 14.00 hrs at Watson's Yard. Members are invited to attend and provide their comments, and any help promoting the event or on the day would be very welcome.

Outstanding tasks: MS started the discussion by pointing out that IM is doing far more than his share of the workload on this project and the onus is on the whole of the membership to get involved and take on some of the tasks, some of which are no more laborious than visiting an existing attraction and writing up a short one page report (see below). As per our appeal in the previous minutes, all members are asked to consider getting involved. The Executive Group is a small number of people trying to do everything, and with the expanding membership we welcome our new members getting more people involved in projects to keep the organisation running for the future of Horncastle.

IM pointed out that one of the things we really need to get on with is visiting other heritage centres to get ideas, as some of these are closed over the winter or only open by appointment. These are:-

Cottage Museum, Woodhall Spa – MS has visited the Cottage Museum previously and is able to write a short report on this.

Louth Museum – volunteer needed

Brigg Herigage Centre – MS said she would visit

Caistor Heritage Centre – this has been visited and BW has written up a report.

Kirton in Lindsey Town Hall – includes heritage room run by their Civic Society. – IM will visit

Sleaford Museum – it was understood Mark Bamford was happy to talk to us about their experience establishing this small museum that goes from strength to strength. – IM can visit if needed

Corby Glen, Willoughby Gallery – also in a historic old school with small archive and regular art exhibitions. It was understood this was only open when they had an exhibition. NF will attend as he has family in the village.

JB asked if there were any attractions in Heckington which could be reviewed for the project as she was thinking of visiting the area. Both the Windmill and the Railway and Heritage Museum would be viable attractions to visit but the Railway Heritage Museum will not open until Easter. JB will make every effort to visit the windmill.

Other suggestions could include:

Gainsborough Heritage Centre (volunteer run with a large archive similar to ours)

Utterby Church (nr Louth) with a new 'touch table' to display documents in their parish chest

Alford Manor House

Navigation House in Sleaford, has many 'interactives' run by a district council not volunteers

Grantham Museum

and many more!

As a guideline for anyone visiting these sites, we need to submit some notes (no more than one A4 sheet) on the heritage centre you visit, noting what has been done well, especially things we can copy and where possible take photographs. Also, when we have the opportunity to speak with those involved, find out from them what they found didn’t work so we can avoid making the same mistakes. Volunteers can also claim their travel expenses back as the Lottery grant included funding for this but please get in touch and put your name down for visiting one of the venues in advance so we can avoid duplication.

We had also receive the initial report from Heather Lomas the collections expert, but IM will chase to see if there is any progress regarding a return visit and a final report.

Sub-Committee Meeting: It was agreed that we really need a subcommittee meeting towards the end of January in order to be able to discuss the arrangements for the exhibition in February. A date was agreed for Wednesday 29th January, 3pm at Watson's Yard by those Executive Group members who were able to give some time to this but any society member will be most welcome to attend and get involved. ALL – please send pictures of what you consider to be good examples of things you'd like to see that we can use to create the 'mood boards' to

Visit to the county museum in Lincoln – Dawn Haywood had invited us to visit the Lincolnshire Archives and 'The Collection's store to look at some of the items they have stored which came from the old Horncastle Museum or were found in the town, with a view on us displaying some of these items (or copies) in a future heritage centre at Watson's Yard. IM will arrange a date.

There is also money in the budget to pay for training for our members/ volunteers on any aspect related to the Archives– for example the caring for archive, databases, or creating attractive displays. MS was thinking about getting in touch with the Spalding Gentleman’s Society for advice on looking after the archive as they have previously offered this to us on a visit.

Item 7. Incorporating the Society and New Constitution

It had been agreed that the Society should formally explore looking at becoming incorporated as a Charitable Incorporated Organisation (CIO) and IF had met with Roly Freeman who provided a model constitution produced by the Charity Commission. IF, IM and MS have looked at this with the solicitor to draft a version of the model constitution. It was noted that members of the Executive Committee effectively became a board of trustees, but we will need to have a separate set of 'rules' regarding officers roles etc., as this wasn’t something there were options for in the model constitution.

Once set up this will be very beneficial as it would mean the Society could carry out transactions and own land and objects in its own right (not vested in holding trustees), and that its committee/trustees and members would have limited liability with no financial contribution to make if the Society ever folded with debts to pay.

Following discussions a draft constitution and proposed rules have been drawn up and we are just waiting for a copy to be returned incorporating all the changes. Once we receive these we will be in a position to circulate them for consultation to Members, noting that nothing can proceed without a vote at an Extraordinary General Meeting. We need to give one month notice of an Extraordinary General Meeting which we ideally need to hold before the end of March so we can use the lottery funding to pay the solicitors fees for handling the incorporation. It was agreed to hold this meeting within 28 days of receiving the finalised constitution, subject to positive comments from members during the consultation.

Item 8. Commemorating VE Day in May 2020

VE Day 75, is a three-day international celebration that will take place from 8th May to 10th May 2020. IM advised that the May Bank Holiday has been moved to Friday 8 May and a number of events are being planned in Horncastle with the Society being part of the organising committee. Over the weekend there are hoped to be events such as a ration book baking competition, 40s style dress with a big event in the market area on the Saturday including 1940s classic cars and a church service and bell ringing on the Sunday. We plan to help with an exhibition in the Community Centre of wartime memories and memorabilia. MS suggested we should approach Ken Argent for help with this. Though we haven’t been able to find any photographs in our archives, we understand that the town was decorated in bunting, flags and streamers and there was a dance late into the night in the Market Place, and we would love to hear from any of our members who remember this or have any photographs or memorabilia. In particular we would like to record people’s memories from this time and seek volunteers both to share their memories, and help interviewing. We understand that schools are keen to get involved and we hope to work with them to record the 'oral histories', building on the success of our work with QEGS last year for Heritage Open Days. The intention is to play these recordings at the exhibition as well as being able to keep them in the archive for future generations so that these important events are remembered.

With help from Gail Dymoke, IM had managed to find a copy of the Horncastle News on microfiche in the library and wondered if Horncastle News or Morton might be interested in helping us reproducing this on the anniversary weekend. It was hoped Chris Bates might be able to help to see if this might be possible.

Item 9. Thomas Sully: approval of leaflet, blue plaque and quotations (MS)

At the last meeting we agreed the date of 19th June to unveil the blue plaque as we understood this to be Thomas Sully’s birthday. Since then Colin Gascoin has received a lot more information from who is understood to be Sully’s Gt, Gt, Gt Grandson in America and there is now some query as to if his date of birth was the 8th June. It was agreed that we would stick with original plans as agreed at the last meeting.

Item 10. Roman Wall Update

The lead advisor Dr David Watt is coming to look at the wall next week to see what needs to be done in light of its current condition, 2 years after his original condition survey. It is hoped that work will start and be completed this year in the warmer months, although at present Historic England has only given funding for the development work and tendering etc. It is understood that the Community Centre was now interested in looking at what is under the ground in the area using geophysics to see where the wall actually goes, and to hold a celebration of Roman Horncastle once the wall was restored. MH would be interested in seeing if geophysics could be used to detect where the wall runs in his garden across the road from the community centre.

Item 11. Any Other Matters

Speakers: MS has a number of ideas for 2021 speakers having one contact that does talks entitled ‘Lawless and Immoral’ and ‘the Disappearing Policemen’ as well as somebody who gives a talk on Lincolnshire dialect but we really do need a volunteer who will take on the role of contacting speakers, and getting in touch ahead of the proposed talk checking the speaker knows where they are going, time needed etc. IM noted that unlike in some Societies we have no problem finding speakers, it would just help to have someone coordinate this part of HHHS's work.

Literary Festival – will be held at the walled garden at Baumber on the 1st and 2nd May. Attended by authors, local publishers, book buyers – NF will be attending and thought it may be of interest to our members.

Item 12. Date of next Meeting

The next meeting will be held on Wednesday 26th February 2020 at 3pm at Watson’s Yard, West Street, Horncastle.

Julie Bates

Executive Committee Minutes Secretary

Horncastle History & Heritage Society AGM held at Watson’s Infant School, West Street, Horncastle on Wednesday 15th May 2019 at 7.30 pm


Present:        Executive Members:  Ian Marshman (IM) Chairman, Mary Silverton (MS),  Annie Clark (AC), Bob Wayne (BW), Michael Hieatt (MH), Sheila Jonkers (SJ) and Julie Bates (JB) Minutes Sec.  

Members:  Chris Bates, Karel Jonkers, Graham Silverton, Roger Hammond, June Benton, Jonothan Read, Mary Read, Patricia Paige, Nick Fox, Ashleigh Bird, Rich Avison, Carol Downer and Mary Elliott

Apologies:       Executive Members:  Chrissie Chapman (CC), Jean Forgham (JF), Ruth Addison (RA), Trevor Butterworth (TB).

Members:  Francis & Gail Dymoke, Richard Downie, Pearl Wheatley, Paul Scott, Ian and Judith French, Vaughan McKay, Fiona Martin, Marilyn Hieatt.

Item 1.             Apologies for Absence

IM accepted apologies from those members detailed above.

Item 2.             Approval of Minutes from the AGM held 16th May 2018

IM asked for approval from those who had attended the meeting.  MS proposed the minutes were an accurate reflection of what took place and this was seconded by Roger Hammond and agreed unanimously. 

Item 3.             Matters Arising

There were no matters arising.

Item 4.             Chairman’s Report

IM read out his report outlining some of the Societies achievements over the last year such as reaching 100 members, Mary’s book selling out, the interesting topics and excellent speakers at meetings and the progress on fundraising to protect the Roman Wall.  He thanked all those who had been involved and helped the Society over the year for all their hard work and efforts which has seen the Society go from strength to strength.  He also paid tribute to Keith Sellars who had been a strong supporter of the Society for many years and a sad loss to all who knew him.  A copy of the Chairman’s Report will be circulated with these minutes.

Item 5.              Treasurer’s Report and Approval of Accounts 2018 - 2019

MS advised that the Treasurer (RA) was unable to attend the meeting and therefore gave a brief appraisal of the accounts which have again been audited in time for the AGM by the Independent Examiner.  Two items of note were the increase in membership income and also the purchase of a projector which has already justified its purchase and will hopefully continue to do so for years to come. 

The following questions were raised by Members:-

Do we now reclaim Gift Aid?
MS advised that the Treasurer had been working to achieve this and it had been hoped that the paperwork would be completed in advance of this AGM but unfortunately this had not been possible though she was advised that this is almost in place. She added that the delay had been caused by an unfortunate oversight as, when the Society changed to its current name, HMRC had not been advised of this change.  This has thus resulted in the need to track back to all the Trustees at that time to complete relevant paperwork and forms confirming the change to the Societies name before we could then proceed with the more straight forward paperwork relating to Gift Aid.  RA has assured MS that this is being dealt with and asked all members to complete a Gift Aid form if they had not already done so.


Should archives be listed as assets on the accounts?
Archives are listed on our insurance but it was generally felt these should not be shown as a value on our accounts – if anything these should be listed on an asset registry which is in effect the database we hold of items in the archive.  The archive material itself is irreplaceable – you cannot replace an original photograph once it is lost, but a photograph itself has very little if no monetary value.  We cannot use the archive as a means to securing a loan for example as you would be able to use a property (a true asset).  As one member felt otherwise then it was agreed we would refer this to the next Executive Meeting for discussion/clarification.

Sheila Jonkers proposed the accounts be accepted, this was seconded by Annie Clark and agreed by all except one of the meeting attendees.

Item 6.             Election of Chair, Vice-Chair, Treasurer and Secretary

IM welcomed any volunteers for any of these posts stressing that there was a real need to engage a Vice-Chair adding if nobody came forward to take on this role then he would look to fill this post via the Executive Committee. 

MS advised that RA was standing down as Treasurer and that she was prepared to take on this role.  Thanks were expressed to RA for all her hard work over the years.  There being no other volunteer for this role BW proposed that MS be accepted as Treasurer, this was seconded by JB.  There being no volunteer to take on the role of Vice-Chair this would be referred to Executive Committee to discuss further.  JB advised she was prepared to stand again as Secretary to which there were no objections.

Officers were therefore agreed by all members present as follows:-

  Chair:                                                              Ian Marshman
  Vice-Chair:                                                      Vacant
  Treasurer:                                                       Mary Silverton
  Secretary:                                                       Julie Bates

Item 7.             Election of Executive Committee

IM thanked everyone that has given their time to the Executive Committee and continue to give support going forward.  He especially thanked Jean Forgham and Chrissie Chapman for all their hard work and input over recent years adding that whilst they will continue to be supportive members they were no longer able to continue to commit to being Executive Committee members and were thus stepping down. He thanked Sheila & Karrel Jonkers who had assisted as interim membership secretary.

BW, MH, AC were prepared to continue as members of the Executive Committee and IM advised that Ashleigh Bird (AB), Nick Fox (NF) and Ian French (IF) had also put their names forward. He encouraged all members to consider joining the Executive Committee as new ideas were always welcomed.  

All members in attendance at the meeting were in favour and the Executive Committee was thus confirmed as:-

                                                                  Bob Wayne                                                    
                                                                  Michael Hieatt
                                                                  Annie Clark
                                                                  Nick Fox
                                                                  Ashleigh Bird
                                                                  Ian French

Item 8.             Proposals for the Future of Watson’s Infant School

IM explained that the Photographic Society would be holding an Extraordinary General Meeting on 11th June to vote on a motion to close and wind up the Society, owing to declining and ageing membership. MS had originally been approached several months ago by the Photographic Society to discuss whether we would like to take on the long lease from them on peppercorn rent, with them able to then rent the space back from us for occasional meetings and their annual exhibition, a reversal of the present relationship where we hire the room from them.

We had not been able to advise members of the situation before this meeting owing to the need of the Photographic Society to first speak to their membership before this became public knowledge. The Executive Committee had agreed to look into the feasibility of taking on the building, and co-opted Patrick Cordingley and Ian French who have the relevant legal expertise to advise us. IM had also written an expression of interest to the National Lottery Heritage Fund (formerly Heritage Lottery Fund) regarding the possibility of us applying for a small grant (c.£12,000) to pay for condition surveys, and a feasibility study of how we could better use the building, as well as legal costs and some equipment such as a laptop for the archives and installing WiFi. The lottery had been positive and asked us to prepare more detailed costs.


However, MS had recently been informed by the Photographic Society that their legal advisors believe they cannot grant a lease, and their members were minded to formally close the society and wind it up. She had been advised that they were looking to close at the end of their programme in October, and then look to sell the building, but that they may be able to give us time to put things in order if we did want to buy it. IM explained that if we do want to buy the building, we would still need to carry out the feasibility project first in order to demonstrate to potential funders that we had a credible plan in place for what to do with the building and what the benefits would be for Horncastle.


He reminded everyone that ultimately if we do nothing then the Society's Archive would then be homeless, as two years ago when we left the Sir Joseph Banks Centre there had been nowhere else to go until Watsons Yard was offered.  The building could be used not just to store the archive, but as an arts and heritage space for the whole community.  Not a museum or visitor attraction that was open 365 days a year, but a space available for local groups and open to the public on summer Saturdays and for special events like Heritage Open Days.


IM asked Members what they thought of the idea, and for any comments or concerns, and the following questions were raised by Members:-

Can we afford to buy the building?
Our enquiries suggest it is possible we may get National Lottery Funding but we would need to go back to them with detailed figures and establish what they would and would not fund.  IM added ongoing running costs need to be taken into consideration though discussions with the Photographic Society indicated that these were manageable, and we were already covering most of them by way of our contributions in 'rent'.  Insurance wouldn’t be much more than we already pay, added to this would be electricity and water and, whilst it isn’t a listed building, the building would still need to be maintained going forward.

Are there plans to get others to use the building in addition to the Photograph Society?
We would certainly look at others using the building and feel it could be a popular venue for small groups. IM stated that he felt the space here was unique in Horncastle, being homely and welcoming, being larger than meeting rooms at the Joseph Banks Centre for instance, but smaller than the rooms at the Community Centre or the vast space at Stanhope Hall. He felt it would lend itself to arts classes or music groups (non-amplified), yoga etc. Whatever we did with it, we intend to keep the main space flexible. He also added that, without the Archive, there was probably no need for the Society to have a club house, so we would want to make sure the building was shared with the community to make the best use of it and with income for room hire going towards running costs.

Would we be able to adapt and/or extend the building?
The building does come with land to the north which was once the playground and includes the toilets, however this is crossed by a right of way to the former teachers house. Extending the property would obviously be subject to planning permissions and also need to take into account that there is a right of way through the yard which would determine how much you would be able to extend the building. It is possible we could look to improving access to the space above the meeting room, which is currently only accessible via a small loft hatch, but that had formerly been bedrooms with the dormer windows only being removed in the 1970s or 80s.

Would we be able to improve access to the building – better lighting etc?
We would certainly hope to be able to improve the lighting and, with the permission of other residents, hopefully relay the flagstone pathway.  Any funder would want to ensure that we made our facilities as accessible as possible, so there would be money available to make the path accessible to those with mobility issues.


MS noted that we currently have between 8 and 10 people working on the archives each Wednesday and if we were to take on ownership of the building or lease then we would be able to store and display the archive better.  IM added that we could have display space for temporary and touring exhibitions, noting that one such touring exhibition on 'Wolds Women of Influence' had not come to Horncastle recently on the basis there was nowhere for it to go.  It was acknowledged that we don’t have car parking space which is a problem and whilst we currently negotiate car parking space at Friskney’s when we have meetings this isn’t always going to be available if the site was developed. He hoped that we could negotiate with QEGS to provide it for any special events.


IM asked the members present if they were in favour of the Executive Committee proceeding to look into the possibilities - All members in attendance at the meeting were in favour.


Item 9.             Comments and Questions from Members about the Society’s Activities

SJ asked if it was possible to hold more informal coffee evenings.  MS was happy to continue with these but requests ideas for themes to be covered and feedback on the format.  It was felt best that people bring their own ideas on given themes as this got everyone involved but it was agreed it would be helpful for somebody to take the role of facilitator to help get the conversation started.

Another suggestion was to have an object handling session of the Roman objects, perhaps as an informal coffee evening. IM said that this was something we could look into.

IM invited ideas for future speakers which resulted in the following suggestions:-


Carol Downey suggested John Marshall-East who was restoring a Hampden WWII Bomber.  She agreed she would contact and ask him to speak to the group.

Sheila Jonkers suggested Mike Arnold who could speak on the topic of Iron Age Settlements.


Ashleigh Bird suggested her archaeology lecturer Duncan Wright may be persuaded to give a talk.

Chris Bates understood that the Lincolnshire Vintage Vehicles group have speakers and felt they would be more than happy to speak at one of our meetings – he was asked to follow this up.

MS advised that once we have agreed the dates for meetings following on from those already in place we will advise those who have suggested speakers in order they may contact them and confirm their availability etc.  IM also asked if anyone knew any metal detectorist groups who may be willing to give a talk and bring along some of their finds – please get in touch if you know anyone!

Rich Avison confirmed that we will be awarded a £1,000 ELDC Councillors Grant towards the Roman Wall, and that the three councillors had wanted to give £500 each but that there was a £1,000 limit to any organisation. IM also clarified that the Society is doing the fundraising for the Roman Wall on behalf of the Community Centre (run by a registered charity, the Horncastle & District Community Association), so wanted to point out that none of this money will appear on our accounts as everything raised is paid directly to their bank account for the Roman wall project.


It was also discussed that if a development across the road at Friskney's went ahead that we might perhaps try to tie in car parking with that, adding we may even wish to lobby for a purpose built heritage centre as part of the development.  IM agreed the Society would like to be involved in any discussions about this site going forward.

There being no further relevant matters to discuss IM thanked those present for their active participation and declared the meeting closed at 8.30 pm

Julie Bates

Attachment:    Chairman’s Report


The history of Myers Bakers
Brief report on the talk by Michael Myers 19th Set2018
Members of Horncastle  History and Heritage Society and their guests  were thrilled by a real local success story when Michael Myers  of Myers Bakery spoke of the history of their business over four generations.

The story started in 1901 when Michael's Great Grandfather Charles purchased a mill and bakery in Alford was soon to bake the first of their now famous plum loafs. The business prospered but 31 years later his son Lewis appeared to take a side step and bought a store in Southrey. Soon the family returned to their true calling when they purchased the bakery and store in Mareham Le Fen. The business in time was passed to the well remembered Derek Myers  and in 1969 the current bakery in the Bull Ring  was purchased.

Without giving away all the secrets Michael described how their plum loafs are made illustrated by a BBC "Countryfile" film made in Horncastle. The listeners were amazed to hear that today  the apparently small shop employs 36 staff and that  their ubiquitous plum loaves are sold in vast numbers all over the UK with about 50% of orders being placed on- line.The family  business has expanded into other areas to include a deli , a tea shop and interior decoration store all to the great benefit of the Town.

The evening concluded with a free tasting of the Myers' wares including their tea loaf. 
President appointed
The Society has elected to have a president for the first time.In recognition of his many years of hard work for the Society, Trevor Butterworth MBE was asked and we are pleased to say accepted this position

Town conservation society elects first President.

The recently held Annual General Meeting of Horncastle History and Heritage Society was made significant by the members electing their very first president. Trevor Butterworth has been an active member and officer of the group for as long as most people can remember, a past chairman he has only just relinquished the post of secretary. 

 Trevor Butterworth, President

 Earlier in the year the Society was honoured when Francis Dymoke agreed to become their patron. In her report the Chairman Mary Silverton thanked Trevor and the committee for their support and noted that the past year had been particularly successful with the membership rising from 78 to 95. During the year the Society had found a new home for its archive at Watson’s Yard, West Street thanks to the generosity of the Photographic Society.

The Town archive which is now tended by 8 volunteer members has received major boost project with the receipt of a large quantity of material from the collection of the noted local historian David Robinson. Sadly David a "Town Boy” and a long time supporter of the society died last year. Mary also noted the loss of the long serving treasurer David Platt earlier this year.

As well as the well attended bi-monthly meetings held at the Admiral Rodney the Society had organised a number of activities most notably a trip to Ayscoughee Hall and the Spalding Gentlemen’s Society. The Society will be actively engaged with the Town’s Roman wall project and the Armistice Celebrations in November.

The election of officers resulted in Mary being re-elected as Chairman, Julie Bates, Secretary, Ruth Addison Treasurer and Chrissie Chapman Membership Secretary.

Submitted by Bob Wayne 

Talk by Francis Dymoke 20th September 2017
A talk about the hereditary Champions of England and the Dymoke Family history

A Champion Tale.

One of the principle aims of the Horncastle History and Heritage Society is to connect members with the history that happened quite literally on their doorstep in this part of Lincolnshire.

The speaker at last Wednesday’s meeting held at the Society’s new Home at Watson’s Yard was Francis Dymoke whose family have lived at  Scrivelsby from the days of the Norman conquest and have been the sovereign’s champion for 34 generations. Francis started by stressing that although the title of Sovereign’s Champion is attached to the holding of the Scrivelsby Estate the actual appointment is only made at a coronation. Francis’s father Col John Dymoke became Queen’s Champion when he took part in  the coronation of Queen  Elisabeth ll. At a future coronation Francis will have to offer his services and if accepted would almost certainly become  King’s Champion.

Should Francis become his family’s 35th Champion his contribution to the ceremony is unlikely to equal that of his illustrious forbear Henry Dymoke who entered the banquet at Westminster Hall that followed George lV’s coronation wearing a gleaming  suit of armour riding on a white charger to throw down his gauntlet 4 times as a  challenge to anyone who disputed the King’s position.

In the lively question and answer session that followed almost inevitably the first question was could Francis ride a horse? Hopes were expressed by members that we may see this tradition revived at a future coronation.

We are proud to report that Francis Dymoke agreed at the meeting to become a patron of the society thus emphasising again the strong links between the Dymoke family and the town of Horncastle. 


Francis DymokeThe gauntlet used by Henry Dymoke and one of the gold cups presented to Champions by the Monarch are shown in this photo of Francis Dymoke and the chairman, Mary Silverton.

Meeting Dates

Proposed Dates of meetings for 2022. All meetings will now be held at the Communty Centre on Manor House Street.

Coffee/tea will be available in the small hall from 7.30pm prior to start of meetings at 7.45pm.


19th Jan -The Development of Horncastle - Nichola Grayson

16th February- Lincolnshire's Woad Industry - Rachel Miles - CANCELLED -replaced with 'The Lincolnshire Rising' - Nick Fox

 16th March - The young Banks and the Lincolnshire connection-Paul Scott

27th April - The Iron Age in the East Midlands - Mike Arnold CANCELLED 

18th May 2022 will be the AGM   at the Community Centre at 7.45pm. 

15th June - Social night with and excellent quiz based on the history of Honcastle.

20th July - 'Maria Carter of Horncastle - transported to Australia' speaker Dr Ian Marshman 

No meeting in August 

 21st Sept- History of British Polar Exploration' -speaker  Ken Richard

19th October- 'Life in a country Village' speakerJean Shaftoe 

 17 November - 'Anglo Saxon dig at Cammeringham, Lincolnshire' 

Speaker: Lisa Brundle

 Subject to availability