Probus Club of Kidsgrove > Newsletters > April 2016

April 2016

President’s Remarks

First of all, I would like to congratulate Eddie and Margaret Bates on their recent Golden Wedding celebration.

At the time of writing this report we have just returned from a wonderful Probus day trip. We spent time in the morning at Carsington Water, where the lovely sunny weather allowed most of our party to stroll around and enjoy the views.

This was followed by a visit to Sir Richard Arkwright’s Masson Mill, established 1769, where we were given a very informative guided tour of the mill by our guide Kevin. Thanks are extended to Peter Lowe and the Social Committee for organising this pleasurable trip.

It is my privilege to announce that Council have awarded Honorary Membership to Michael Nield in recognition of his valuable work for the club over a number of years.

Michael was Assistant Secretary from 2005-2008. He has been Secretary of the club from 2009 to date, Website Administrator from 2005 to date and Newsletter Editor from 2011 to date.

A very commendable record which will be recognised shortly with the presentation of a badge to mark the achievement.

I am sure that all the Probus Members and their wives (partners) are now looking forward to the forthcoming holiday to Torquay on the 1st May.

Stephen Rhodes

The Speaker today is  Mr Ian Rimmer who will talk to us about The History of Rolls Royce.

Birthdays during May 2016.

John Lowe

Walk Report

The April walk was from Wildboarclough over the top of Shuttlingsloe (elevation 1660 feet) coming down on the Macclesfield Forest side on the north side of the hill.

Again the walk was in very poor weather conditions and it was quite a struggle to get to the top.  If the weather had been better when we got up there we would have had some very fine views particularly of the Cat and Fiddle, Axe Edge with the Cheshire plain away to the west.  Later when we were descending and walking along the valley of Wildboarclough the weather improved a little.

We had lunch at the Crag Inn and the beer and food were very good.  The pub was up for sale and the landlady informed us she was hoping to move to Spain and on the basis of today’s weather who can blame her!

This walk has led to a U-turn in policy towards the walks I lead for Probus. From now on I intend to pick all low level walks with only slight gradients.

Next Walk

The next walk is on Wednesday 11th May (because of the Probus holiday to Torquay during the first week of May).

The walk will start from the Apedale Country Park Energy Centre off the Alsagers Bank to Knutton road.  It will be in the park itself but also extending through the woods up to Wood Lane.

Lunch is at the Plough Inn, Bignall End.

Please meet by 9:30 at the tiered car parks in Kidsgrove.

Garry Bell

Report on Carsington Water and Masson Mills Trip.

Our April trip commenced and ended in bright sunshine. The journey through the Staffs & Derbyshire countryside was so enjoyable with the farming landscape, with mainly sheep and their lambs basking in the sunshine. The hedges turning into stone walls as we went along. Our first stop was at Carsington Water. A large expanse of water with a few special shops and cups of tea etc. We did not have time to take advantage of the boats and the walks but sitting in the sun with great views was very pleasant.

We moved on to Matlock Bath to stop at Masson Mills. Basic requirements for mixed groups are (a) shopping and (b) museum. This had both; the shopping covered everything you could think of, with some bargains thrown in. The museum was the showpiece mill of Sir Richard Arkwright. Built in 1783 the building is still in tip top condition with a fine tall chimney built in 1907. This was added when the water wheel was replaced with steam which in turn was replaced by hydroelectric power. The tour started with a short film and introduction which brought back my scant knowledge of the spinning jenny and the amazing machinery designed so long ago with the intricate engineering involved. We then went through the process from the packs of raw cotton to the weaving of the cloth. Too much detail for this report but from the ringing of the six o’clock bell and for the twelve hours six days per week it must have been noisy and dangerous. It appears the average life span was only thirty six years. With boys starting at nine years old doing dangerous cleaning up from under the machines, life was hard but Arkwright did provide housing, schools and a church. He made a fortune!

A great day out and thanks to Peter for all the organisation.

Frank Timmis

News from our associated member in America

Dear Michael; I just read the March, 2016 Newsletter online and very much enjoyed the news of the esteemed Probus Club of Kidsgrove. As usual, you do an excellent job of reporting the events in fine detail.  I just returned from my vacation in Costa Rica and Palm Beach, Florida. I had a great time visiting rain forest, volcanoes, rivers and wildlife. Please relay my best wishes to the members for a happy and healthy spring. Most cordially, Harvey A Snider

P S.  A special best wishes to Allan Henshall

Irish Mum writes to her son

Dear Son, 
Just a few lines to let you know I’m still alive. I’m writing this letter slowly because I know you can’t read fast. We are all doing very well. You won’t recognize the house when you get home – because we have moved. Your dad read in the newspaper that most accidents happen within 20 miles from your home, so we moved 25 miles to Wexford.

I won’t be able to send you the address because the last family that lived here took the house numbers when they moved so that they wouldn’t have to change their address. This place is really nice… It even has a washing machine. I’m not sure it works so well though: last week I put a load in and pulled the chain and haven’t seen them since.

Your father’s got a really good job now. He’s got 500 men under him. He’s cutting the grass at the cemetery. Your sister Mary had a baby this morning but I haven’t found out if it’s a boy or a girl, so I don’t know whether you are an auntie or an uncle. Your brother Tom is still in the army. He’s only been there a short while and they’ve already made him a court martial!

Your Uncle Patrick drowned last week in a vat of whiskey in the Dublin Distillery. Some of his workmates tried to save him but he fought them off bravely. They cremated him and it took three days to put out the fire.

I’m sorry to say that your idiot cousin Seamus was arrested while riding his bicycle last week. They are charging him with dope peddling.

I went to the doctor on Thursday and your father went with me. The doctor put a small tube in my mouth and told me not to talk for ten minutes. Your father offered to buy it from him.

The weather isn’t bad here. It only rained twice this week, first for three days and then for four days Monday was so windy one of the chickens laid the same egg four times.

We had a letter from the undertaker. He said if the last payment on your grandmother’s plot wasn’t paid in seven days, up she comes.

About that coat you wanted me to send you, your Uncle Stanley said it would be too heavy to send in the mail with the buttons on, so we cut them off and put them in the pockets.

John locked his keys in the car yesterday… We were really worried because it took him two hours to get me and your father out

Three of your friends went off a bridge in a pick-up truck. Ralph was driving. He wound down the window and swam to safety. Your other two friends were in the flatbed at the back. They drowned because they couldn’t get the tailgate down. There isn’t much more news at this time.

Nothing much has happened.

Your loving Mum.

P.S. I was going to send you some money but I had already sealed the envelope. 

Dates for your Diary

Wednesday27 Apr 2016Probus Ordinary Meeting at the Cricket Club. Meet 9.30am for 10.00am start.
Sunday – Saturday1-7 May 2016Probus 7 day holiday to Torquay with Robinson’s Travel stopping at the Abbey Lawn Hotel.
Wednesday11 May 2016 The Probus walk will start from the Apedale Country Park Energy Centre off the Alsagers Bank to Knutton road.  It will be in the park itself but also extending through the woods up to Wood Lane. Lunch is at the Plough Inn, Bignall End. Please meet by 9:30 at the tiered car parks in Kidsgrove.
Thurs to Saturday12 -14 May 2016Murder in Play at Yoxall Village Hall Haslington  Doors open 7.00 pm Curtain Up 7.30 Pm Prompt , Saturday Matinee Doors Open 2.00 Pm Curtain Up 2.30 prompt Tickets £6.00 See Peter Lloyd.
Wednesday18 May 2016Probus Council Meeting at the Cricket Club. Meet at 9.30am
Wednesday25 May 2016Probus Ordinary Meeting at the Cricket Club. Meet 9.30am for 10.00am start.
Friday27 May 2016 President’s Evening at the Manor House Hotel, Alsager


We look forward to the holiday to Torquay with Robinsons Holidays departing from Kidsgrove on Sunday 1st May 2016 and returning on Saturday 7th May 2016.

Included excursions

Tuesday – Dartmouth and Totnes with cream tea.

Thursday – Plymouth and Naval Harbour Cruise

Pick up times Sunday 1st May 2016

Town Hall Kidsgrove                                               9.00am

Clough Hall Road                                                    9.15am

Co-op Cedar Avenue                                               9.30am

West Avenue Talke                                                 9.40am

Liverpool Road West Church Lawton                     9.50am

Luggage labels and Seat No’s will be distributed at the Probus meeting on Wednesday 27th April 2016.

Ken Williamson  

Reminder that our current Newsletter Editor Michael Nield is retiring in June 2016 after five years doing the job. It is important that a member comes forward to continue this important task.