January 2014


1. Trail guide to six interpretive panels.

Frank Robinson reviewed plans for the leaflet and the panels. Our research will provide information for both the leaflet and the panels, with the leaflet to be printed by October to qualify for HLF funding. It will provide a map showing panel locations. Frank will consider the design of the map so that the space available in the leaflet for our input can be estimated. It should be possible to provide further information by a tag for mobile phones on the panels. Inputs should be sent to Frank by the end of March, for a Forum on the topic in April. Kev noted that it would be good to include the story of relevant people, with pictures if possible, eg Edmund Blackett who had worked at the Flax Mill, and became a notable architect in Australia. Other ideas were Emily Marwood (trees on West Green), Robert Hildyard (built Town Hall) and John Slater Pratt (printer, lived at Oaklands).

2. Forum Programme

Barry Harrison: It was decided that the priority should given to arranging for Barry to inspect Stokesley roof spaces, which he is keen to do. Keith Burtonwill give him contact details for a property on Levenside which would welcome a survey, and Hugh/David Maudsley will approach Richard Smelt concerning the Manor House. It was agreed that it would be better for participants to approach Barry individually rather than at a Forum.

It was agreed that the next Forum should be at the Record Office. This is currently closed for building work, followed by a period of limited access until May. (Hugh has booked the Park Room for Mon 12 May). This will be followed by a Forum in late May/early June to progress the leaflet.

The Northallerton Local History Society meet at the Records Office Friday mornings: they have suggested that some of us meet with them to explore common interest. Hugh, David, Keith and Derek Whiting expressed an interest, so Hugh will check with them on dates. The Stokesley Society hopes to arrange an exchange of guided walks with them for this summer.

3. Topic Reviews

Transport: Chris Taylor has revised his note on Pannierways, and is now working on Turnpikes – there was little information at the Records Office on this. Stokesley was not on a Turnpike.

Manor: ##David Maudsley## is examining some deeds given to Richard Smelt, referring to the Manor House in the 1920s and two other locations dated 1707-1777, defined by the names of owners of the adjacent properties. He is transcribing a handwritten document relating to an area on Levenside near to the Manor.

Great War: Keith has given two talks, and had some valuable contributions with photos of veterans. He would appreciate help in processing all this information. Easter would be a good time to have an exhibition in the Town Hall. [Now re-organised to 16th and 17th May]] The Stokesley Society will consider buying Display Boards for this.

Preston School: Val Burton has made good progress on the wills relating to the bequest for the School and the delay in their implementation, also on links between the Preston and Ingleby families (Ripley Castle).

Archaeology : John Edwards reported that extraction and listing of all relevant Stokesley entries in the English Heritage PastScape website is now completed. Next stage is to obtain data from the Heritage Gateway HER (Historical Environmental Record) at N. Yorks County Hall. This should provide more comprehensive and detailed subjects of interest. Ultimately, the aim is to pull together all known Stokesley archaeological information into a single database.

Stokesley’s Flax Mill: Hugh has asked Mike Richardson concerning a session photographing in the Mill: Kev to propose suitable dates for the visit. John would like to join the visit.

Stokesley Schools: Kev Cale is exploring work on WW1 with both the Primary and Secondary Schools. With the latter he is considering an interactive map of where the fallen lived and where they fell. It might be good if one or pupils helped Keith with the Web site.

Great Ayton History Group: Kev noted that work was planned on exploring the site of the cottage where James Cook’s family lived near Airey Hill Farm, and that they would welcome volunteers to help.

Hugh Charman

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