Tuesday, November 21, 2006

New Uttoxeter Housing as seen from the air

New Uttoxeter Housing as seen from the air - planners cleverly spell out to Burton just where the town actually is for the next Mayoral fly over

Saturday, October 28, 2006

Recruitment for Tesco expansion

Taylor Woodrow are advertising for a quantity surveyor for the new build on the Tesco store: complete with extra floors - TW has the contract for just about everything in town - new conservatory, garden sheds..

Senior Quantity Surveyor
Involved in the major expansion of Tesco stores (including the creation of
additional floors), you will enjoy involvement in a new project
approximately every nine months. If you prefer, the vast majority of
these projects can be close to home, giving you an excellent work/life
balance as well as considerable responsibility and challenge.
£32-47,500 + Car Allowance (Where will they park?)

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Cattle market - Why are we waiting?

Still no start by Taylor Woodrow on Uttoxeter's supposed £20 million-plus town centre redevelopment schemes
No explanation from Taylor Woodrow -no explanation from any of the local councillors
Taylor Woodrow were named as the company to regenerate the town in 2004, building due to start October 2005..... As taxpayers we are investing a considerable amount who is accountable who will explain?

Monday, October 02, 2006

Save the Wellington Public House

We are very concerned about the state of the Wellington Public House and the recent fire on the premises.
The Borough Council may need to take action under s215 of the 1990 Planning Act to tidy up this public eyesore (in this case to make good any fire damage and make the building safe against trespass); or serve a S54 urgent works notice (giving the owner 7 days notice of the LPA's intent to carry out the urgent works to make the building safe and weathertight and to reclaim the costs from the owner); or a s48 Repairs Notice as a prelude to compulsory purchase.
We have been advised by English Heritage that they may be instructed to exercise these powers by the Secretary of State in default of action by the local authority.

ESBC is currently without a Conservation Officer - this is appalling.

The owner of the Wellington is currently the newly elected Town Ward Councillor for the Tories

Monday, September 25, 2006

Planning applications

Dont forget you can view and comment on Planning applications online from ESBC

Friday, August 04, 2006

Domesday Book Online - but you have to pay to see it

Place name:
Uttoxeter, Staffordshire
246v Great Domesday Book
Domesday place name:
People mentioned:
Aelfgeat; Aki; Almaer; Alweard; Alwine; Arnketil; Burgesses of Tamworth; Dunning; Earl Aelfgar; Gruffydd; Iwar; Ketil; King William as landholder; Oda; Rafwin; Swein; Thorbiorn; Uhtraed; Wudia; Wulfgeat; Wulfheah; Wulfhere; Wulfmaer; Wulfric; Ylving

Here is what the entry says in English

The King holds Uttoxeter. Earl Aelfgar held it. There is half a hide. There is land for 10 Ploughs. In demesne are 2 ploughs with 1 slave; and 24 villans and eleven bordars with 11 ploughs. There are 16 acres of meadow and woodland 2 leagues long and as many broad. TRE it was worth £6 now £7.
TRE tempora regis Eduardis In the time of King Edward the Confessor

Hide was 120 acres, although this could vary, and sometimes was around 240 acres. Domesday hide values were not real measurements of land, but figures on which tax (geld) was based (used in English areas, equivalent to a carucate).
Plough caruca, carruca
In Domesday the word implies a plough team with its eight oxen and the plough itself. The measure of a carucate was originally the amount of land which such a team could plough in one day.
Slave: A man or woman who owed personal service to another, and who was un-free, and unable to move home or work or change allegiance, to buy or to sell, without permission.
TRE tempora regis Eduardis In the time of King Edward the Confessor; by implication,
DOM= assessment
In essence, there were two Domesday surveys: the first raised a royal Geld to pay for war with the Danes; and the second dealt with matters of land tenure arising from the first and the billeting of so many troops on English land.
Algar (Lady Godiva’s Son!) died seven years before the conquest, though he is mentioned as the land belonging to him. Even though it had passed onto his sons Edwin earl of Mercia. Edwin took up arms against William on behalf of his oppressed countrymen. Thuis was obviously still freash when it came to writing up the book that his name was struck from the book despite being the most important landowner in country. This is because his son and his sons Edwin and Morcar, (Earls of Mercia and Northumberland), ..took up arms on behalf of their enslaved countrymen in the year 1071, and Edwin being betrayed into the hands of the Normans, met an untimely fate; when his estates were, of course confiscated and most of those in Staffordshire remained in the King's hands at the Domesday survey.
The devastating vengeance which William inflicted on the English revolters, may probably account for the immense tract of waste lands in Staffordshire,
William was a Bastard in every sense!
Demesne – private land of the manor
League 3 miles

Sunday, July 23, 2006

Date set for Town Ward Election

If the election is contested, a poll will take place on THURSDAY, 31 AUGUST 2006 -
We will probably not get cards again - For recent elections ESBC have not sent voting cards to households - this is possibly a contributing factor for the appalling turn out in local elections along woth all the other myriad factors which turn the franchised off politics. A card acts as a flyer and aide memoire and is sorely missed.

Saturday, February 25, 2006

Archaeology Society and Wood Farm

CROXDEN Abbey has long been a very visible sign that Uttoxeter is rich in history.
And with the abbey so close to Wood Farm, it is no surprise that Cistercian artefacts have been found on its land, including a little bell, which could have come from a monk’s robe, horse’s bridle or a falconer.
These items, along with a second century Roman coin, signify that the site has been occupied for 2,000 years.
But finding flints, stone pounders, arrow heads, neolithic pottery, mace heads, axes, burial mounds and stone structures is evidence that the Uttoxeter area has history going back even further — by thousands and thousands of years.
Nick Brandrick has lived at the 224-acre dairy farm since 1964.
He has 30 acres of woodland and one of the more ancient wooded areas houses some unusual animals.
As Nick, 49, shakes some food pellets, the trees start rustling and the sense of history that pervades the farm is heightened by the sight of a small herd of wild boar, which comes snuffling out the wood.
It is partly because of the boar that Nick first found an interest in investigating the history of his land.
While building the boar pen, he and his son found a spear point — identified as coming from a fishing spear because of its serrated edges.
"That was the first real clue that anything had happened here," says Nick.
Those first finds in the 1990s spurred the farmer on to learn about archaeology from books and carry out his own investigations.
Sadly the wild boar, the dairy cows and even Nick himself have accidentally destroyed some of the evidence over the years, but much still remains.
"I started doing a few experimental digs over the years, but a lot of my finds have come with help from other people.
"I find things by going into the structures and digging on those structures."
Some of the eeriest places on Nick’s farms are the wooded hollows which become bogs in winter, but dry out in summer.
These creepy bogs are dotted with cairns — piles of stones which are thought to mark bog burials.
One expert from Derby University said he thought there was evidence of Bronze Age burial mounds in the wooded areas.
However, any trace of human remains would unfortunately be long gone.
"A dog bone would disappear in two months in this ground, because of the acidity," says Nick.
More baffling is the stone alignments which can be seen when the bogs are dry. Lines of sandstones have been placed across the bog like the spokes of a wheel.
Scattered here and there, Nick has found a good deal of quartz too which has been "napped", where part of the stone is struck off, making a sharp edge to use as a tool.
Other small pieces of quartz have signs of being used as a "pot boiler" — where the stone has been placed in a fire and then dropped into water to heat the liquid.
Curiously, not all of the stones Nick has been examining are local. Small white pebbles have been found purposefully placed at the end of stone lines, or in between larger stones, and are thought to come from places like the Chilterns or East Anglia.
A long grassy mound crosses one of the fields on Wood Farm. Bits of stone can be seen here and there and at first Nick thought it was a stone wall which had collapsed, but careful examination has since revealed that stones had been carefully placed at intervals and not in one long continuous line.
Following the stones leads you to what Nick calls the "Altar" and another big mound, where many of the artefacts have been found on digs, which reveal the careful layers of the structure and its elements of human construction.
Dotted here and there around the farm you can also see stones which bear signs of having been used to sharpen flints and make arrowheads.
The flints have been officially dated as neolithic by the county, but so far experts refuse to accept that the artefacts were found on digs focusing on the farm’s curious stone structures.
One expert from Hanley has even dated one of Nick’s flints at 40,000 BC to 60,000 BC.
However, he is still sceptical that it is quite so ancient, believing it more likely to be between seven to 10 thousand BC.
Most of his finds and the stone structures are believed to be neolithic, which dates them from 2,000 BC to 8,000 BC.
However, some may be even older, with markings on them hinting at the mesolithic age, which is from 8,000 BC up to 20,000 BC.
Stonehenge is probably one of the most well-known structures built by neolithic man and historians believe neolithic people had a huge sense of awe for nature and the changing seasons, which is reflected in structures such as stone circles.
Up at Greatgate there is evidence of this too. Just off Nick’s land there is rock face, which from the side looks like the profile of a person.
With permission from his neighbour, Nick explored the area and found intriguing bowl shapes cut into the rock at the very base of the cliff, with markings in the rock face just above the bowls.
The escarpment faces sunset and Nick believe the "cups" had a ritualistic purpose.
Just looking at the barrows and strange stone alignments conjures up images of prehistoric men and women carrying out rituals and burials.
It is obvious that Nick has a love for his land and a boundless enthusiasm in finding out about its history.
And he’s not the only one.
Members of Uttoxeter Archaeology Society are just as excited about the mysterious stone features to be found at the farm.
The society is hoping to start excavating some of the sites when the frosts have ebbed away and the more clement weather arrives in March.
Dave Parkes, a member of the society, says: "Part of it is making sure it’s recorded for future generations, but it’s also about encouraging other archaeologists to get on the land to investigate more about these kinds of finds.
"There are not many people in the UK who are experts in this area because it’s so hard to quantify and assess the finds."
Dave’s interest and amateur specialism in neolithic archaeology stems from his degree in ancient history.
He says: "It’s an incredible place. It’s got a real magic about it.
"It’s on a hill looking out over the valley and it just makes you think, what were they doing and why were they there? It’s like trying to piece together a jigsaw.
"It creates scenarios in your mind, to think about what these people were doing. Were they wearing furs or were they naked or painted?
"It needs more study, more approaches and opinions from other archaeologists and more debate about what it could be."
Nick’s artefacts and more information about his farm is currently on display at Uttoxeter Heritage Centre, as part of the centre’s new exhibitions of local collectors and their collections.