Report from the Chair of Council

As we approach the end of another year, it has been good to meet members again in person at our monthly Saturday afternoon lectures, the Annual Lunch at Calverton, and, as this goes to press, the celebration event marking the completion of a number of related projects: Stage 1 of our Digitisation programme for ‘Transactions’, the completion of the re-catalogued Thoroton Collection at Nottinghamshire Archives (DD/TS) and the launch of the Terry Fry collection of photographs and slides on the Inspire Picture Archive. These projects are time-consuming endeavours, drawing on a variety of expertise, and cost the Society some investment of funds, but I hope that they represent excellent value for money and will provide a lasting resource upon which members - as well as anyone with an interest in the history and archaeology of Nottinghamshire - can draw in the future. Looking ahead to 2024, we hope to have both a Record Series volume and an inaugural volume in our Digital Record Series to launch - both texts are currently being edited for publication - as well as maintaining our usual programme of lectures and events. The Society continues to operate very much on the goodwill, time and experience offered by its voluntary membership -especially those serving in officer posts and on Council. We always remain open to new ideas, new people and new suggestions for doing what we do in different ways. The move towards digital and online, which the pandemic served to accelerate, is something we have continued to engage with modestly. The future may involve more electronic-only access to newsletters and publications and it would be good to have members’ feedback on these possibilities. Also, whether an alternative or additional meeting time to our usual Saturday afternoon lectures would encourage or discourage our existing - as well as prospective - membership. Do feel free to send me your thoughts and ideas at Wishing everyone a peaceful and restful Christmas!

Richard Gaunt

Geoffrey Bond Thoroton Research Awards

Geoffrey Bond, a long-standing member of the Thoroton Society, has generously provided funds for several years now to support research into the history and archaeology of the County of Nottinghamshire. The Society also makes an equal contribution to support this important part of our remit, making a total of £2000 available. This year we received two submissions and it was decided that both should be awarded grants; one is to continue research of two volumes of a journal kept by Miss Anne Cooke which covers the period between 1835 to 1839 - born in Macclesfield but came to live in Nottinghamshire where she had relatives.

The second research project is further archaeological investigation in Wiverton and the grant will fund training workshops for project volunteers to engage in work with finds and enable pottery dating to be undertaken. We look forward to reading more of their work in the Newsletter in due course and then it is hoped that fuller accounts will appear in future editions of the Transactions.The terms and conditions of the award can be found on the Society’s website - you will note that it has now been agreed that projects will have two years to complete their research and submit results. In future the coordination of the awards will be undertaken by Mark Dorrington.

The closing date for submissions for an award in the next round is 1st September 2024.

Barbara Cast, Research Award Coordinator


The saga of the Willoughby Almshouses at Cossall continues with a further application by the same developer which SPAB comments on as follows:

“We are of the view that the extent of change proposed to the building's historic plan form and fabric would result in a substantial level of harm that has not been adequately explained or justified in the application. As such, we maintain our objection to the application but would hope to be able to engage with your authority and the applicant to achieve a scheme that we are able to support.”

A further letter was sent to Broxtowe BC on behalf of Thoroton confirming the strong opposition of these radical changes to such an important range of Nottinghamshire buildings. The Council has arranged a public meeting on the matter to which the Society had an invitation. We await news on this unwelcome application.

There has been an application for the varying of the conditions for the solar farm at Halloughton by JBM Solar Projects which will be considered and responded to.

Should any members have concerns about planning matters in their area they can be drawn to the attention of the Response Team. Full details of the proposal and the concerns about it must be submitted before any response could be made.

Barbara Cast, Response Coordinator