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Scarcroft residents: visited the February meeting of the East Keswick Historical Society. The speaker was Alan Batty talking about transport in the district over the centuries. In the 1600’s packhorses were the method used. In the 1700’s the stage coaches come in, alongside canals for goods. Due to the appalling conditions of the roads they were very slow and quite hazardous, but gradually roads improved, turnpike and toll roads were built so average speeds were reaching 14 mph and they had a long run until the railways came in the 1800’s. Among the early rail lines was the Leeds to Selby and the Harrogate to Church Fenton. In 1876 the Leeds Wetherby line was built joining at Crossgates, single track at first, doubled in 1901. Alan showed a good selection of Bardsey Station photographs. On December 3 1901 at about 5pm the Leeds to Newcastle came through. Approaching Bardsey and over the A58/Church Lane bridge from Hetchell the carriages and tender became derailed, the engine remaining on the line. The Bardsey signalman had just accepted a Leeds bound train from Collingham Bridge! Just in time he threw the signals back to danger and the driver spotted the change and was able to stop in time to avoid what would have been a major disaster. An enquiry determined the main course was excessive speed with track problems.
Scarcroft Development Group: the group, working on the Scarcroft Neighbourhood Plan held their meeting at the village hall. Ruth Middleton, in the chair outlined details of the annual report that had been put to the recent AGM. Roger Shirley detailed progress identifying places of historical value to the area. Also communication improvement with email, notice boards, Wetherby News, Bardsey and Thorner Parish Magazines. Timescales were noted and hopefully the final Neighbourhood Plan would be completed in the summer and would satisfy the planning requirements for the future of Scarcroft. It was general agreed the much progress has been made in little more than a year and thanks were due to all those involved. The next meeting is March 15 8pm at the village hall.
Mathew Dodgson Trust: the ancient Mathew Dodgson Trust that gives money to the poor of Thorner, Shadwell and Scarcroft. Originating from the rents from some property and land in Thorner, now a financial investment. The trustees of Thorner, David Lindley, Shadwell, Geoffrey Wilson and Paul C Thompson, Scarcroft were honoured to have the Lord Mayor of Leeds, Coun Ann Castle came along to present the cheque, at Thorner Church, to the recipients from the Thorner, Shadwell and Scarcroft organisations, Following the presentation, a light lunch was taken at the Mexborough Arms.
Village hall Management Committee: the meeting scheduled for Wednesday 13 had to be cancelled due to heavy snow. To be rearranged.