I had a lovely evening a couple of weeks ago at the Haddenham & Aldreth 1940’s pre-event to their amazing Blossoms & Bygones weekend which is coming up in May. The chapel in Aldreth was decked out in 1940’s gear, from banners and flags, clothes and furniture to a gramophone (working and playing great tunes) and original film projector and reels. The building was packed out for this lovely gathering and the evening kicked off with Mike Petty giving us a great talk about Cambs during WWII, I then followed with a brief stint about 1940’s makeup and style, finishing of the evening with a local chap giving his memories of the war - and of course there was a couple of lovely tea breaks with home made cake and bread and butter pudding. I can’t wait until the main event in May :)
In the meantime why not check out the Haddenham & Aldreth CCAN Group!
I am pleased to announce that we have another new Cambridgeshire Community Archive Group (CCAN). The beautiful village of Elton in the very far north west of Cambs has joined our brilliant community archives network. They have a very good village society and have a wonderful heritage project on the go, with exciting events such as their very own ‘Big Dig’ and the involvement of the whole community and village school is something to be admired. We are really looking forward to seeing the Elton CCAN group additions to the CCAN website.
CCAN is Cambridgeshire’s online community archive, a place to see old pictures, photos, written and recorded memories, pod-casts and video clips along with living history as groups record their activities from today for the history of tomorrow. If you would like to know more or get involved please Contact Me and I will help you.
We went to take Willow for a walk up the Magog Down the other night and even though it was still light, the gates are shut at 6pm there, so there was a whole bunch of cars parked along the wonky verges. So we decided to nip along a little further and take her on Stapleford park. This is another lovely old recreation ground, you can quite often catch a nice game of cricket there ;) You can also see the 'Magic Roundabout' !!! There are 2 play areas, one is on the south side for younger kids and then there is the old school play area by the entrance on the north west. This is where if you are lucky you will see the big old roundabout - The 'Magic Roundabout' - turning round and round, slowly, all, it seems by itself. We sat and watched it for ages and no, it's not because someone had not long been on it! There was no wind as such and the thing seems to turn on its own, we reckon, due to the bumpy ground it sits on. Anyway I jumped on and had a go and made myself feel really dizzy :) There are definate earthworks across this rec, signs of the activity of Stapleford hundreds of years ago. There's plenty of wide open space and nice trees about, so it's well worth a visit :)
I was pleased to lend my support to the plight of the Cherry Trees which were cut down recently at Rectory Terrace in Cherry Hinton. Especially as they are part of our WWII memorial.
THE CHERRY HINTON CHERRY TREES
Cherry Hinton gets its name from the abundance of Cherry trees which used to grow here. Particularly from the large cherry orchards which use to populate the village from at least the mid 1500’s. Cherry Hinton could almost have been called Saffron Hinton as saffron was also widely grown but Walden had the biggest trade of saffron crop and claimed the name Saffron Walden. In the Domesday book Cherry Hinton is recorded as ‘Hinton’ only. The ‘Cherry’ prefix is first recorded in the mid 1500’s, so Cherry Hinton is actually spelt as two separate words rather than the sometimes mistaken Cherryhinton.
In Church End the is a clue to the Cherry trade with one of the large old houses having the name Cherry Lodge. It was at Cherry Lodge orchards that students from Peterhouse would make their way across the fields to gather and eat the ripe cherries in the late summer months.
War Memorial Cherry Trees:
1st WW Memorial
Cherry Hinton Recreation ground is the village war memorial for all fifty four village servicemen killed during the first world war. Mr E Pamplin, member of the famous Pamplin Steam Engine family and who owned the land in 1927, conveyed the land to five trustees to use as a recreation ground. This conveyance sets out details of the trust and records the fact that the land was acquired by public subscription as a war memorial.
2nd WW Memorial
The ornamental cherry trees along each side of Cherry Hinton High Street, from Mill End road right up to the Church, represent one tree for each of the thirty four village service men who lost their lives fighting for their country in the second world war. They were paid by and planted for the Cherry Hinton Women’s Institute in January 1949. This is why Cherry Hinton has no stone war memorial.
Around 2001 the City Council fell some of these trees which caused an uproar from many in the village and after a small campaign the Council replanted those trees it had cut down. So this is not the first time something like this has happened.
For other articles about the War Memorial and for pictures from the last time some of the Cherry Hinton War Memorial Trees were felled you can visit the Cherry Hinton Group on www.ccan.co.uk and go to pages 21-23.
We had a fantastic CCAN (Cambs Community Archives) AGM this year. Held in the conference room, in Cambridge Central Library, right next to the Cambridgeshire Collection. So many people turned up we were in danger of spilling out in to the main library! It was brilliant to see so many of you there and we all felt very proud to be part of such a great and worthwhile project. Well done to everyone involved in CCAN for making it such a strong and inspiring group. We look forward to welcoming along more groups and people and I can’t wait to see what archives and tales you all add over the next year! Many thanks too for Chris Jakes who gave us an excellent talk on the work and use of the Cambridgeshire Collection, we are very pleased to work in partnership with such a great resource.
Had a lovely walk round Teversham recreation ground recently -
Teversham is a small village just to the north of Cherry Hinton, east of Cambridge – We took Willow, who is nearly 1 year old now, for a walk there as it’s nice to take her different places for walks instead of just going over our local park. If you don’t know it, you’d miss it, Teversham rec is on the High Street/Fulbourn Road but it is set back from the road behind the houses. As you come through Teversham from the west/Airport Way you have to go through the village and just as you are coming out of the housing area you’ll see a small car park on your left hand side. Pull in here and park, if driving. Then you just follow the track way which goes north, for about 2 or 3 mins. There are two separate gates/entrances on the left hand side as you walk down the track and you just go through one of these. You’ll discover a lovely big open park field with a little shelter block and a play park in the corner. It is backed by arable fields and the perimeter trees are tall and very Victorian in appearance. It’s just one of those nice, different places to know about. In the summer it’s worth taking a couple tennis rackets and some balls as there is a little grass, unfenced court on one side. You’ll also see some great retro play park equipment, still going strong – things like the old Wickstead horse and bars to swing on – like those of us who were kids in the 1970’s and 80’s will remember :)
I had a nice time visiting the very active St Neots Community Archives Group the other week. This is a great CCAN group, very busy and full of ideas and upcoming projects. The St Neots CCAN group includes adjoining parishes such as Yelling, Eaton Socon, Wyboston, Staploe and Paxton to name but a few. The group met for their meeting in the St Neots Musuem which is well worth a visit if you are ever that way. I am particularly fond of this museum as it is home to a life size wall chart depicting my relative, James Toller, The Eynesbury Giant. There will be more, coming soon, about him in the Michells's Archives section of this website)
St. Neots Community Archive has been set up to collect information about the past from the above-mentioned parishes and the surrounding villages. If you have any pictures, old maps or interesting stories that you would like to be included in the St. Neots Community Archive, please contact Pam Ostler at St. Neots Museum or Sue Jarrett at email@example.com
If you would like further details of how to have your own CCAN site then please get in touch with me using the 'Contact Me' form :)
I have been helping out with a fantastic new project in Stilton, Cambs. Can't say too much yet but over the year I will be able to let you know all the exciting things planned! I had been meaning to go to Stilton for a long time, I always thought I'd take an afternoon drive out there to visit and buy some Stilton cheese and then go on to Melton Mowbray to get a pork pie and then find another local foody place, just for fun. When I finally managed to visit Stilton a few weeks ago I was surprised how close of the A1 it was. I had always noticed the signs for it on the A1 when going up towards Peterbourgh but thought that it must be several miles away when in fact it is right next to the A1. When you enter Stilton - which is in Cambridgeshire - you immediately take note of the impressively wide main street, which you'll soon realise was the original 'A1' or rather the Great North Road. It definitely has the 'Roman Road' look and feel about it but most likely goes way back, as a routeway, into prehistory. The current A1 is a bypass to Stilton. The next thing you'll notice are the wonderful old and impressive building lining this road. Several of which were very large coaching houses for weary travellers of the past to take rest.
I had a lovely meeting with the Stilton history expert in one of these, now restored, coaching inns, where we discussed all the exciting plans for the upcoming projects in Stilton including Stilton CCAN, Stilton Cheese, Films and Heritage Centres :)
One of the rooms we had coffee in was called the Turpin room, where the famous Dick Turpin, Highway Man, is reputed to have stayed.
We of course had to eat lots of different Stilton cheeses!!!
More news on this to follow in time :)
Landscape Archaeologist, Local Historian & Mobile Makeup Artist