KIRTON IN 2008 – LOCAL HISTORY RECORDER’S REPORT
Again it seems there was never a dull moment in this small East Suffolk village.
Physical changes – both large and small – seemed to continue apace, although judging by agents’ notice boards, there was a noticeable “stickiness” in property sales towards the end of the year. Perhaps the “Credit Crunch” will become more apparent in 2009.
Rivett Close – the new development off Weir Place was so named in honour of this important Village dynasty. Although the name is now sadly extinct in the Village, the 1901 Census recorded fourteen Rivett households comprising fifty individuals which led locals to say “the Village was held together by Rivetts.” There is also a certain poignancy in that Queenie Rivett (the last of the line who passed away in 2007) had been the organist at the Church for many years, particularly during the long incumbency of the Rev. Weir. The Parish Council picked the name from a selection provided at their request by the LHR – the others were Dunstall – a house by the Brook on a 1741 map; Searchlight – the WWII deployment in the field opposite Weir Place; Three Sisters – the sunken barge down at the Creek; Adurnus – an ancient name for the Deben; and Goseford after the important ship-building area on the Deben between Kirton Creek and the Ferry. The building work now appears to be nearing completion. No sign yet that pleas for a footpath out to Burnt House Lane will be met.
The Maltings Site – Renovation of the Listed house was completed. It was put on the market at £595,000 but failed to attract a buyer. There was some anxiety when the agent repeatedly advertised seven new properties in the grounds for sale “off plan” when formal Permission was for only five. The agent described this as human error rather than anything more sinister. Nothing seemed to be happening all through the year as residents keenly awaited the arrival of the SCC Archaeology team who had been contracted to undertake the long-awaited study of this unique WWII site, laid waste by the previous owner. In December Colin Shaw, the Parish Clerk, advised that SCDC had said the Archaeologists were due to start work imminently.
Durilda Green – The new development was completed, attractively landscaped and occupied almost immediately. Later in the year, a communal barbecue was held during which a presentation was made, on behalf of the Parish Council, to Susan Harvey, who had just stood down after some thirty years and whose inspiration it had been to offer the land for the building of Durilda Green.
Elsewhere – infills and extensions seemed to be happening everywhere. On the Bucklesham Road, two new houses were erected in double-quick time on either side of the “new-old” Police House next to Kirton Manor. After landscaping they seem to have blended in so well it is hardly noticeable they are new to the street-scene. Renovation works at The Manor itself now seem to have been completed.
Blob 6 – Many people were dismayed at the approach taken by SCDC in its Consultation on the alleged need for Housing in East Suffolk. First an artificial divide was created between East of Ipswich and the Colneis Peninsula. Then, the question posed was where, rather than whether, 1620 houses should be built on the Peninsula. A further twist was added when SCDC openly sought to pit one community against another by selecting five blobs but inviting suggestions for alternatives. It should have come as no surprise that this invitation would be taken up. It was – by Felixstowe Councillor Mike Nimney (we say Nimby) who not only proposed a new blob 6 on land north of the A14 near the Farm Shop but had the gall to say he wanted to call it Trimley All Saints. Blob 6 may have died but the Village remains vigilant.
The Earthquake – struck at 12.56am on 27th February – the LHR recorded the tremor.
The Church – major renovations were undertaken esp. to the Tower.
The Village Shop/ Post Office – remained closed as concerned individuals continued to explore the potential for it to re-open or for a replacement elsewhere.
The Phonebox on the Green – BT sought its removal but the PC decided to adopt it pending finding a sponsor.
The 3 Village Woodland Scheme – was widely publicised – trees grown by the schoolchildren thrive as the quest for land continues for this excellent venture. As with Affordable Housing, local landowners seem unable to rise to the challenge.
The Parish Plan – action points are being addressed in various ways.
The K&F Youth Club – Kafy – continues to thrive.
Kirton Ploughing Society – run by Tom Wells held its fifth match on 9th November.
Art on the Prom – run jointly by Pat Todd – also had its fifth event – 73 stalls.
Kirton Railway – station-master Fred Last again raised money for the Hospice.
A Floral Aeroplane – an F2A – was set up in front of the Leisure Centre built on a frame created at Kirton Forge by E. Jacobs & Son.
KAFPA was launched – a new performing arts group chaired by Mike Todd.
Sad Departures included: Paul Cone: Hilary Barker; June Metcalfe; June Hill; David Shepherd; Roy Denny
LOCAL HISTORY IN 2008
Several deposits were made in the Local Archive:
old copies of The K&F Review from Joyce Haines – list attached
papers (1975-92) of the Ethelbert Martin Players from Stephen Harvey
2nd Kirton Brownies papers 1976-2002 from the Davies family
K&F Newsletter July 1950 + a Church Appeal Oct 1952 from Les Long
photographs from Robin Dickerson
a history of the Felixstowe Art Group from Geoff Christian – we are still looking into David Hockney’s time in the Village
A WWII Memories Event at the Chapel organised by Jane Bradburn – around thirty people attended what was a very useful and enjoyable session
A stall at the Fete on 14th June (this year sadly on the Recreation Ground rather than the Old Rectory) – was manned by the LHR and Jane Bradburn appealing both for donations to the Friends’ Church Renovation Fund and for older residents, past and present, to join in the ongoing “Memories Project”.
An article for the SLHC Magazine re 2006 Kirton Living History Day (see copy)
A House-History Day organised by Jane Bradburn & Angela Cope was held at the Church Hall on 20th Sept. – an exhibition plus an excellent talk by Sheila Reed from the Record Office and later on a “Memories” discussion. Around thirty people came – the idea being to encourage people to research their houses
Liaison with potential LHRs from Bucklesham Village
Other researchers – several people were assisted in person or on-line.
Friends of Kirton Church – the LHR continued to serve on the Committee.
The K&F Review – copies have been retained as usual.
Ongoing & Potential Projects include: WWII; “Memories”; Deben Ferries, Wells
Kirton Local History Recorder (01394 448568) January 2009