News-in-brief from Draycott-In-The-Moors in early April 2015
News of…: Cresswell protesters take it to the government / Draycott Arms changes / Tara is a Sports Personality! / our vicar prepares his farewells
(NB – There are also dozens of events in our locality – including the QQS Anniversary Ball. Check out the Events page)
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Cresswell protesters take it to the top
Well, despite the Easter holiday, the fight against the Cresswell planning application goes on – and now it’s reaching government level.
Although the planning application – to more than double the size of Cresswell’s housing and industrial units – was approved by Staffordshire Moorlands Council, the VVSM local community action group have once again been burning the midnight oil to try to stop, or at least, delay, the plans being implemented.
The new update from them is a plea to ask anyone who objected to the proposals to get behind their latest project: a direct appeal to the government. You can read all about what they are trying to do and support them by clicking here.
The more one looks into this matter, the odder things seem to get.
There is now quite a strong suspicion that some councillors on the planning committee (the one that made the decision) did not receive or even see the objections-document drawn up by VVSM. The document spells out in detail the grounds for objection.
And it now seems that other rural districts in the Moorlands are (quite rightly) getting fearful after this decision – because, by approving this application, the committee has set a precedent, enabling the committee to ignore the so-called Moorlands Core Strategy, the very policy that protects many local small villages from inappropriate development.
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So long, Rector David….
It’s always a sad day when a well-liked neighbour leaves the area, but it is perhaps doubly sad when that figure is a well-respected local vicar. After eight years here, Rector David Bickersteth is finally retiring from his role as a parish clergyman; and he and his wife Gillian will be moving back to his native Cumbria.
The Reverend David’s last duty at St Margaret’s Church will be to conduct the 8am service this Sunday (12th April), but he will then rush over to St Peter’s in Blythe Bridge to hold the 10am service, after which there will be a farewell event there.
We have found David to be nothing but open, trusting and welcoming. We wish him the best in his retirement.
No successor has been appointed yet, though the vacancy is being advertised already.
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All change at The Arms
By coincidence, another established local figure is also taking a new direction in life.
As you may have noticed the Draycott Arms closed recently, but this is a temporary situation while the new owners get themselves moved in.
John Ford, the landlord & owner, decided that it was time for him and wife Deryn to return properly to their main business, the running of their farm, Cairneycroft. Many of us have tasted the excellent beef that comes off Cairneycroft – as it was on the menu at the Arms!
Although John & Deryn have left the pub, you can still thank them for their work by using their Facebook site. John told us that buying and refurbishing the Draycott Arms in 2012 was always, for him, a form of giving-back to his community. The pub had been shut for two years when he took it over and some of us had feared it would not open again. So… in that sense… job done!
Thanks to them both…
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One interesting thing about all the people we’ve mentioned so far – the VVSM committee, David Bickersteth and John Ford – is that they have been tireless in caring for their community.
But even they may admit that Tara Burndred has the energy of ten!
Tara founded and now runs the Tatsu Kai Dojo martial-arts and exercise centre in Cresswell, and rarely a week goes past where she is not announcing some new venture.
So, to us, it’s not surprising that the her work at the dojo has seen her listed for a Sentinel Newspaper Sports Personality Award in the sport in the community section…
Well deserved, we say!
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