Tag Archives: Stone constituency

NEWS: volunteer awards / new MP…? / Facebook changes

News-in-brief  from Draycott-In-The-Moors & District in early July 2021
In this post we have news of…: success at volunteer awards / new parliamentary constituency for us / changes to village facebook page.

For news of what’s on in our area at this time, please click here

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Take a bow!

The recent Staffordshire Moorlands Star Volunteering Awards ceremony saw a bunch of honours for residents of this locality. In fact, if there had been an award for the village to get the most mentions, Draycott would have had it!

Top recognition should go to the Draycott Covid Support Group, which picked up the award for the New Volunteer-Group of The Year. Led by Kathleen Ferneyhough and her trusty aide Denise Wheat, the group has been a beacon of light in the last twelve months. The group’s members (about forty in all) helped out their neighbours by running errands, walking dogs, giving emotional support and more. What was also very impressive was the way that they also built a system to preserve privacy for all. Extremely well deserved.

Draycott knight

It was also very good indeed to see that John Clarke, the go-to man in Draycott for many years, got a commendation in the Lifetime Achievement section. You can see his story by clicking here. It seems odd to have given John a ‘lifetime’ award as he is not old by any means (!), and continues on strongly. Right now he’s enmeshed in organising the Draycott Summer Fayre (booked for late August) – so if you can help, please contact him.

Last but never least, there was a commendation in the Young Volunteer of The Year category for young Leo Myatt, the ‘knight of Draycott’ (see pic right). Most of us have seen him on his frequent strolls around the village in his helmet & tunic; and he even got a touch of fame when he even had his story covered in The Sun newspaper. As the nomination said, the reason for his inclusion was not so much his achievements as his ability to constantly be bringing a smile to the community in gloomy times.
Nice to see too that our local library, at Blythe Bridge, was also in the awards – see the details of that by clicking here.

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Getting friendly – with Barlaston, Trentham and Meir

The government is on a drive to reduce the number of parliamentary constituencies, which means many constituencies will be getting a new shape. It has just published its recommendations for these new shapes.
Although everyone thought we’d be moved into the Staffs Moorlands constituency to be with Cheadle and Leek, what the Boundary Commission would actually like to see is that when (if?) Draycott moves out of the Stone constituency, it goes into what is virtually a new one, where the village will be joined up with Barlaston, Trentham, Blythe Bridge, Fulford, Meir and bits of south Longton.
(At district council level though, we would still stay under Staffordshire Moorlands).

The shape of the potential new constituency

The new constituency (see map) is being called ‘Stoke South’ which is a bit odd, as most of it is rural and in Stafford Borough, with the only Stoke bits being in the bump at the top of it. (see map).
On paper, the seat would be a Conservative hold, though in some years veering toward marginal.

We quite like the idea. It’s always fun to be in a seat that is slightly marginal, because the MP has to work hard for you (unlike the current one!) in order to get your vote, and so your vote really does matter.

However, not everyone will be happy with the recommendation, so the Boundary Commission is inviting you to comment – click here for how to do that. The consultation ends on August 2nd.

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Facebook’s shenanigan

You may have noticed that the village Facebook page has recently changed its status to ‘private’. Thus means that, unless you are signed up to the page, you can’t see its discussions.
Some ex-Draycottians living abroad aren’t happy with that. As one told us, they liked being able to drop in on the page occasionally to see the gossip. (The reason they give for not actually signing up to the page is that you have to be registered with Facebook first, and there are too many worries for them about the way that Facebook treats privacy concerns, especially abroad.)

However, we’re told that the change to private was slightly forced on the page’s administrators.
In a recent, universal change, Facebook altered the rules on group-pages such as Draycott’s so that even non-members can post. Well, our administrators felt that was unfair, and so that left them with only the one alternative – to go private.
From now on, if you do want to join in the group, first you must have registered with Facebook, and then you must click the Join button on the group-page itself.

Want to comment on any of the items on this page?  Just use the comments box – scroll down to near the bottom of this page.
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NEWS: roadworks / hustings / chimes / knitted angels

News-in-brief  from Draycott-In-The-Moors in late November 2019
In this post we have news of…: roadworks delays / election hustings for us / knit angels for Xmas / the chimes at the church (NB – There are also dozens of events coming up soon in our locality – including a Cresswell party night …  Check out the Events page)

If you’d like an email from us each fortnight about the latest Draycott & Cresswell & District news, please click the ‘Follow’ button in the top right-hand corner of this webpage
For daily updates about life in our district, keep checking the village Facebook page

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Roadworks dates

The incessant rains have not only caused flash flooding in the village but have also delayed the roadworks up by the A521-A50 roundabout.

So we contacted Colin Redmond, the Project Manager, for an update, and he told us that a revised schedule was now in place, meaning that…
~Eastbound incoming lanes will now remain closed until Monday 16 December.
~Then the Christmas break comes into force, i.e. there will be a lane open both ways – until Thursday 9 Jan.
~On Thursday 9 Jan, the big reversal takes place – with westbound, outgoing lanes closed altogether, but with an eastbound, incoming lane now open – until February 14th.
~After February 14th, things get a bit more messy as all the loose ends are tidied up, so the arrangements for these weeks following might be in more flux.
In theory, it should all be over by mid March.

So far, the roadworks have caused few problems for us, but the second phase (i.e. the one starting in January) was always the one that was going to be the most difficult. In this second phase, we will see a heavier concentration of traffic through Blythe Bridge and so, possible delays.
Patience will be needed…

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Seen a candidate?

It always annoys us when people argue against proportional representation for Parliament by saying that “at least we will get a representative who is truly local and whom we can talk to”.
The true fact is that, in most constituencies, one rarely sees one’s MP!

Photo by Element5 Digital on Pexels.comFor example, we were really hoping for a local village-hall hustings this election time. (Hustings are when the candidates come together on a panel to appear before a local audience). In fact, in Stoke, hustings are already set to take place.
But, here in our constituency (the constituency of Stone), only one full one has been arranged so far – and that will be online only!

Still, anyway, well done to the local online news-website A Little Bit of Stone for organising it. If you click on to their Facebook site on the evening of Wed December 3rd (between 7pm and 9pm), you will observe the candidates ‘debating’ live as they make their pitches on a video stream.

The only local other hustings we know of is in Eccleshall (one of the main towns in our constituency along with Stone, Cheadle, Blythe Bridge and Madeley) on Thursday 28th. However, it is not a full hustings because the Conservative candidate has declined to appear; all the other candidates will be there though (click here for candidates list).
It’s at the Royal Oak pub in Eccleshall from 7.30pm; it’s been organised by the Eccleshall Today website.

Incidentally, if you want to submit questions for the candidates to answer in this ‘hustings’ event on Dec 3rd, click here to see the question form.

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Christmas is coming

Nice to see that the local churches are already publishing their Christmas schedules. Here in Draycott, our community carols will take place on Sunday Dec 22nd.
For details of this and more Christmas events, see our What’s On page.

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

If you’re something of a knitter, you could also take part in our local Knitted Angels project.
Chrissi Thompson, who used to run the Draycott Youth Club, is asking us to make little knitted figures which will then be situated in public sight around the district… to make us all feel a bit more Christmassy. It’s a great idea.

For more details and for patterns, contact Chrissi.

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“Christmas bells, Christmas bells…”

Finally, we smiled on reading a post on the village Facebook page where there was a discussion about St Margaret’s bells ringing on the hour. Was the church’s bell-ringing team really traipsing up to the church to ring the bells every sixty minutes?

Well, it would be nice to think they were but, no, they aren’t! The chimes ringing from the church are on a timer.

If you’re thinking that you can’t remember hearing them, it’s not just because they are relatively quiet. The fact is that the chiming mechanism had not been working for a long time; and it took major efforts by Draycott’s Mr-Fixit, John Clarke, to get it all working again, and they’ve only been in action a while.
Well done to him!  They have a magical, traditional sound.

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As for the St Margaret’s Church bell-ringing team, yes, they are still going strong, and it will be great to hear them pull a full peal of bells on Christmas Day…
(If you fancy joining the bell-ringing team – and it’s a great way to keep fit! – contact David Meller.)

Want to comment on any of the items on this page?  Just use the comments box – scroll down to near the bottom of this page.
(The form will ask if you wish to put in your email address.  You don’t have to – and it is always kept private anyway and never published -, but, if you don’t add your email address, that means you might miss any responses to your comment)

If you’d like an email from us each fortnight alerting you to the latest Draycott & District news, please click the ‘Follow’ button in the top right-hand corner of this webpage

Do you have news or information snippets that you think residents would like to see up on this website? If so – email us

NEWS: protest update / bowls season / church services / election watch

News-in-brief  from Draycott-In-The-Moors in mid-April 2015 News of…:  candidates’ opinions to be published / deadline for Cresswell plans latest protest / revelations about the Reverend… / heat on the bowls green
(NB – There are also dozens of events in our locality – including the opening of the cricket season in Cresswell. Check out the Events page)

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Forecast of a hot summer. Sort of.

We’ve had an interesting email from Sue Stepek, the secretary of the local bowls club at Cresswell, which has just kicked off its season.  She is absolutely sure that we are in for a scorcher of a summer…
“…  a cousin of mine has a friend who knows someone with a connection to someone who has spoken to a man who has said that this summer will be an absolute dream for bowls players. Warm, sunny afternoons with just a hint of a balmy breeze. It will only rain at night, he says, so that the greens won’t suffer. What could be a better year to start playing bowls?…”
Sue is very rarely wrong, we admit – but what about the friend of her friend’s friend? Hmm.

Anyway… this could be your passport to a healthy activity.  The club’s membership is just £25 per year, which allows unlimited access to the green (on Blythe Business Park at Cresswell) through the season.
Another way to do it is to pay the other membership rate of £7.50 + £1 each time you play. Click here for details

What else would you be doing on a sunny afternoon? This would be a really good way to avoid the gardening…

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Place your questions now

Yes, we can’t avoid mentioning Election Day on May 7th.

As you know, we are in the Stone Parliamentary Constituency – and the local website for Stone & District is offering an interesting service.  It says it wants your questions about the issues, so that it can put them to the candidates. Click here to find out the details.
It’s also running a day by day look at how the candidates are doing.

One thing we didn’t know is that the Stone seat is the largest in Staffordshire, being predominantly rural, and covers Cheadle, Tean and Draycott in the Staffordshire Moorlands; Eccleshall, Gnosall and Blythe Bridge in Stafford Borough; and Madeley and Loggerheads in Newcastle-under-Lyme. No wonder it’s such a strange shape.
There are also lots of other facts about the Stone constituency on the BBC Election Website.

Meanwhile, we’ll be doing our best to keep you up with what’s happening with the Draycott-in-the-Moors Parish Council election.  We’ve already sent out letters to the candidates to ask them to outline a description of themselves and their abilities.
We’ll be publishing their replies on April 27th, in good time for the big day.

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Going to government

Another team of hard-working people are trying to get involved with government – but this is all about something completely different.

As we all know, the Staffordshire Moorlands District Council Planning Committee overturned the advice of its own experts and also sidelined the council’s own Core Strategy Plan – in order to approve an application to more than double the size of Cresswell’s housing and industry.

On behalf of residents, the VVSM local community action group appealed that decision; and the matter has now been referred to senior case-officers in the government’s Department of Communities.  The VVSM team have been working away furiously to meet the deadline set by the case-officers to submit major evidence.
You can read up on their progress, and find out how to help, by clicking here.

Some of the group have been out and about talking to people in other, nearby areas; and it’s nice to report that councils in both Hilderstone and Fulford are formally supporting the objections to the plan.

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Service(s) nearly as normal

There had been some concern that church services at Draycott St Margaret’s would have to be suspended because (as we reported last week), the rector Reverend David Bickersteth has now retired.
However, the church wardens have managed to organise cover and services will continue at the old church; Reverend Noreen Russell, though semi-retired herself, has stepped into the breach.
However – keep checking the church’s website for the actual times of services.

One thing that surprised us was to learn that David had previously been working in Yorkshire… except that… he hadn’t.  This was a mistake in a story written about the retirement in one of the local papers.  In fact, David and wife Gillian had been in Cumbria for the 26 years previous to their coming to Draycott.
Also – who knew that David’s father was Dean of Lichfield? … except that … he wasn’t.  David’s father was Chapter Clerk of Ripon Cathedral.

Glad to have cleared that up.

Want to comment on any of the items on this page?
Just use the comments box – near the bottom of this page.           (The form will ask if you wish to put in your email address.  You don’t have to – and it is always kept private anyway and never published -, but, if you don’t add your email, that means you might miss any responses to your comment).