Our monthly update in Spotlight - Uffculme's village magazine

October 2018 to January 2019

January 2019 was our Annual General Meeting at which officers and a new committee were appointed.  Outgoing Chair, Mike Dalby, who has been our stalwart Chair for five years, was thanked for all his work in the role.  Happily he has agreed to remain on the committee so we will continue to benefit from his experience.  Annie Saunter was appointed as our new Chair.  Maria Weston continues as Secretary for which the group is immensely grateful.  She puts in a huge amount of hard work on behalf of the group and has done so for 10 years.  John Bell and Trevor Emms continue to job-share as Treasurer and again the meeting expressed gratitude for their hard work.  The full list of committee members is on the relevant page on the website.  We have two vacancies on the committee - please have a look at our Members' Communication Page.  Annie Saunter gave a fascinating talk on St Mary's Church graveyard - a fuller report follows shortly.

In December 2018 we enjoyed our annual Christmas Party, with a fun, but sometimes challenging, historical quiz.  We worked our brains in exchange for some lovely refreshments!  Thanks to all the members who attended and brought delicious offerings.

In November 2018 one of our members, Jeni Fulton Price, gave us a talk based on researches she had done on Uffculme's district nursing service before the NHS.  Two minute books, covering the period 1902 to 1948, had been passed on to Uffculme Local History Group by Francis Welland, former Clerk to Uffculme Parish Council. Jeni painstakingly worked through the minute books and pulled out information relating to this essential Parish service.  She gave us a brief background of the national history of district nursing services, the history of our own service (from the 'Walrond Nurse' service paid for by Lord Walrond to the Uffculme District Nursing Association funded mainly by subscriptions and donations).  She then went on to tell us about the nurses who were employed, fundraising by the 'great and the good' of the Parish and some of the fascinating smaller details like how much was spent on bicycle repairs over the years!  The minute books proved a treasure trove of social history.  However, and rather frustratingly, the ledgers gave few contemporary clues about the major national change in 1948 as the National Health Service was born and district nursing services were taken into central control (initially by local authorities).  Jeni reminded us that minutes and records of the meetings of our local groups and societies could be historical gems to future generations!

October 2018

The October meeting was very well attended,and much enjoyed. Our speaker was Colin Spackman, whose passion for history,and his subjects came through loud and clear.

The Welington Town Drain has had a chequered past, since it was first diverted from Hayward Water to give a much needed source of water to the town of Wellington, there being some speculation as to when this actually happened, but happen it did,and presumably was welcomed with open buckets!

Prior to this any industry would have had trouble if they needed water, although wells were prevalent during the past centuries, and most households would have had access to these. Recently it has needed a keen historian like Colin to seek out its old course, and rather ditchlike aspect - luckily,there was a Colin available!

He went on to talk about the A.38, the longest 2-fiture A road in the country, starting in Bodmin in Cornwall,and going up to just south of Sheffield.

He told of the way the country is divided into sections, which determine the number of the road, but the A.38 just keeps on going, first slightly east,then forging northwards:  a mighty beast!  It has obviously been improved and changed during its lifetime,but still keeps its title proudly.

We hope to see Colin back again next year,as he has much more up his sleeve.
Altogether it was a very enjoyable afternoon, after the summer break. We hope to see membership continue to rise, as history in Uffculme and the surrounding area must never be ignored and should be cherished and explored.

Annie Saunter