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Cradley Millenium Book

For the Millennium Book and Box see also the Heritage Group pages at www.cradleyvillagehall.org.uk

At the June 2000 meeting of the Parish Council, members discussed projects to mark the Millennium. One of the suggestions was a book, in which village life in Cradley and Storridge in the year 2000, could be recorded. Elizabeth Hunt volunteered to organise the project and a sub-committee of Fred Beard, John Rowe, David Creed-Newton and Diana Cale was appointed with Elizabeth. The present format was selected after much discussion, having consulted the Hereford Archive office, the Police and the school so that the Data Protection Act was not breached and offence was not caused to people living in the villages. Over 40 contacts wrote the headings for their own organisations, which were then typed by the Parish council's Clerk, Pat Courtney. The organisers then took endless time and effort getting their members to sign the relevant pages and David Townsend, Headmaster of Cradley School, got all the children and staff in the school to sign their page. Acid free paper and biro pens with archival ink were used for greater preservation. Paul and Wynnell Hunt battled through the great floods of Autumn 2000 to visit a map shop in Upton-on-Severn to obtain several ordnance survey maps which they then joined together to enable the villages to be centralised on the map. The resulting maps give a wonderful picture of both villages, their position, houses and roads. Wynnell Hunt also wrote the history of the villages from pre-historic times to the present day. John Drummond took the photographs, even going to a first floor bedroom of a house to get a better view! David Creed-Newton then printed off the photographs on his computer.

The Millennium Box

Early in 2001 the Committee was approached by Brian Kingsley who asked if he could make a box in which to keep the book. About 20 years ago, Michael Allfrey had cut down an oak tree that was growing in the field where the new Cradley school will be built. The wood was taken to Bishops Frome saw mills to be cut into planks which were then stored at Michael's farm. With Peter Baker's help, the planks were taken to Ridgeway Joinery where John Monk offered to cut them into workable lengths. Peter delivered them to Brian Kingsley who then went to work on the wood, cut it again and polished it to its present golden colour. He then crafted the box so that the book fitted perfectly. Alan Edwards offered to carve the inscription and after doing so, left his trademark, a carved acorn. The whole project involved a large number of people in the villages who all enjoyed working on the project and the Parish Council hope this beautiful book and its oak box will remain an invaluable memory of life in the villages in the year 2000

MilleniumBookBox MilleniumBookBox

The book, in its box, was displayed in Cradley church on 13 January 2002.

The villages of Cradley and Storridge in 2000 AD

MilleniumBook

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS
Produced by a committee of Cradley Parish Council
Elizabeth Hunt
Frederick Beard
David Creed-Newton
Diana Cale
John Rowe
We would like to thank the many people who have given generously of their time in helping to produce this book

CONTENTS LIST AND INDEX OF PARTICIPANTS

Many organisations are represented in this book.

They are shown below in the order in which they appear.


Frontispiece
Acknowledgements
General map of the area
Preface
Millennium Night
History
Cradley Parish Council
Christian Church of St James in Cradley
Christian Church of St John in Storridge
Cradley Church Sunday School
Cradley Children's Singing Group
Cradley Church Bellringers
Cradley Chapel
Evergreens
Home Group
Mothers' Union
Women's Christian Fellowship
Cradley W.I.
Storridge W.I.
Cradley Village Hall
Storridge Village Hall
Cradley C.E. Primary School
Cradley School Governors
Friends of Cradley School
Cradley Pre-school Playgroup
Cradley Parent, Baby and Toddler Group
Cradley Surgery and Dispensary
Cradley Mathon and Storridge Newsletter team
Cradley Mathon and Storridge Support Group
Meals on Wheels
Charities of Richard Hill and Others
Neighbourhood Watch
Cradley Mathon and Storridge branch of the Royal British Legion
Cradley Singers
1st Cradley Scout Group
Red Lion Football Club
Cradley Mathon and Storridge Tennis Club
Cradley Walking Group
Local Businesses
Other Residents

Detail Maps of the Parish

General map of Cradley

(The maps are subject to copyright)

PREFACE

To mark the Millennium, Cradley Parish Council decided on a number of projects, one of which is this handsome book.

The book includes sections that describe briefly the activities of all of the active organisations and pages on which those who wished to do so have written their names.

We hope that you will find the brief historical background interesting. It may stimulate some of our readers to delve deeper.

There is also a selection of photographs that were commissioned in order to give a flavour of what the villages of Cradley and Storridge looked like in the year 2000.

If you are a visitor to the area, you are welcome to browse through these pages. Please treat it with care and respect.

If you live in the villages, this is your book. Look after it with pride.

We hope that readers of the book will find it to be a fascinating insight into the diversity of Village activities at this time.

Cradley Parish Council

2000 A.D.

CRADLEY CELEBRATES THE MILLENNIUM

During the Autumn of 1999, the villages of Cradley and Storridge distributed candles to be lit at midnight on 31st December, together with a copy of St Luke's Gospel, including the Millennium prayer, as a gift from the Church to each household in the parish.

There was a midnight service at Cradley church, when the bells were rung and toasts were drunk.

Others from the villages attended private parties or joined in celebrations at Mathon Village Hall.

A bonfire was lit on the Worcestershire Beacon and the surrounding hills, including one up the Vinesend. There were several spectacular fireworks parties.

At midday, all the churches in England held a special Millennium service and bells were rung from every church tower.

HISTORICAL BACKGROUND

In pre-historic times, with camps established on the Worcestershire Beacon, Midsummer Hill and the Herefordshire Beacon, it is probable that our ancestors hunted through the woods of Cradley and Storridge. An important Bronze Age settlement from the tenth century BC flourished at South End, Mathon, where excavations revealed flints and burial urns. Other important finds from that period were found near the Wyche cutting and near West Malvern church. When the Romans came, their armies would certainly have marched through the village, perhaps en route for Hereford or for the important Roman base at Stretton Grandison. A marching fort has been identified on the Bromyard road and Roman pottery kilns have been found at Leigh Sinton.

Later, when the Romans had left, Cradley became part of the large Saxon kingdom of Mercia and Saxon bishoprics were set up at Worcester and Hereford. In the north, outside wall of the church tower, is a carved Saxon stone, which could have been part of a Saxon cross. Perhaps, even before the Normans came, there was a church here. The parish church of Saint James the Great is Norman in origin, with impressive chevron decoration on the south doorway. It would have had brightly painted walls and rushes on the floor. In the Domesday Book of 1086, under 'Credelaie', ('Creoda's Leah') a priest is listed and also a reeve, who would run the lord's estates in his absence. Cradley held a very important position in these years.

Old names, rapidly disappearing, give some idea of the antiquity of this area. Saxon origins can be found in field names and place names from the 1839 Tithe Map of Cradley, drawn up by the schoolmaster, William Jones. Grittlesend has its origins in the Saxon 'grete', meaning 'gravel' and the name Storridge comes from the Saxon for 'stony ridge'. Pearls, Wofrick, Stirt and Stocking, all field or woodland names, have their origins in Saxon times. Pontic, the slope where the road from Cradley joins the main road could be linked with the word for bridge and perhaps this was where a stream crossed the old track. Mobbleday Pleck, the original name for the New Inn (later The Stable) above King's Bridge, signifies a meeting place in a field and is of mediaeval origin. Coney Cut Hill refers to the time when King Edward the Third had royal rabbit warrens in Storridge.

Ancient woodland exists in Cradley, mainly in the Storridge area. The Herefordshire Inventory, published by the Nature Conservancy Council, defines this woodland as having had continuous woodland cover since at least 1600 AD and adds "the majority are surviving fragments of primeval forests, formed after the ice age ended 10,000 years ago". Halesend Wood, Norrest Wood and the woods at Whitman's Hill and Lumbridge Hill, among others, all come into this category. In Elizabeth's reign, oaks from Cradley woods probably went to build the ships that defeated the Armada. This victory was signalled by bonfires on the Malvern Hills.

(Photographs of Buryfields, The Seed Farm, Pontic bank and Lumbridge wood)

In mediaeval times, Buryfields, Churchfields and Westfield were three open fields, worked in strips by the villagers, and mediaeval fishponds can still be seen today at Upper Churchfields. In 1290 Bishop Swinfield, with thirty-five followers, visited Cradley, probably staying at his 'palace' or large farmhouse. Vines were then grown on the sunny slopes at Vyneges or Vinesend, and a witch, Amisia Daniels, is said to have lived on Wildgoose Hill!

The foundations of Cradley Village Hall, one of the most important buildings in the village, later to become the Old Boys' School, were laid in the fifteenth century. Pevsner considered that it could have been either a church house or a mediaeval vicarage.Certainly the strong links with the parish church continued for many years, with the Rector and churchwardens being responsible for the boys' school established there. At one time, Queen Elizabeth the First owned the manor of Cradley.Two years after she came to the throne, the earliest parish registers, dating from 1560, recorded births, marriages and deaths, in Latin.

Civil War battles were fought all round this area in Worcester, Bosbury and Ledbury, and, outside the Seven Stars public house, a cannon ball from that time and also a large buckle were recently found. Soldiers from Worcester or Ledbury probably marched along that road. Legend has it that a grave, opened when the Cradley graveyard area was extended, held bones thought to be those of soldiers from the Civil War.

Many of Cradley's cottages and larger buildings date from the 17th century and some have evidence of a greater age. The Seed Farm, a moated farmhouse, dates from the 16th century or earlier and both Upper Vinesend and the Hill Farm are in part 16th century buildings, as is Pitlock farm. The present Post Office, together with Clematis Cottage and Aythens (originally Eyethermes) formed an important farm among orchards in those days.

Water mills have always been a notable feature in Cradley, from at least Norman times, when one was mentioned in Domesday Book. A 'water corne mill' stood by the stream in Bason Croft, now Jubilee field, and there were many others in the village. The largest ones in the 18th century were Heathmill, Barrow Mill, Archer's Mill (still in working order) and Wold Mill, possibly once a wool mill. An interesting clause in James Farmer's will (of Heathmill) in 1828 states quite firmly "I have left nothing to my daughter, Jane Summers, on account of the great expense of her education and her Disobedience"! We are left wondering where she was educated and whether she ran away to get married.

In the 19th century, Cradley was covered in orchards and hopfields. Old leases reveal just how the land was cultivated, with strict rules governing the sowing of crops and care of the woods and hedgerows. Hop-picking provided useful wages for local people and 'incomers' and ended in celebrations, when girls would be lifted into the cribs and kissed. Any men who could not escape suffered a similar fate! Farms such as the Beanhouse, the Homend and the Nupend, among others, employed hop-pickers. Cherry wakes were held at the public houses. such as the Red Lion. Most farms had a cider mill and workers were allowed a daily half- gallon of 'Squeal Pig', the rougher cider. May-Day celebrations and royal events were enjoyed by all the villagers in a farmer's field with games, races and good food. In the winter, the Cradley 'mummers' provided entertainment. In those days, Cradley was very largely self-sufficient. Shoemakers, blacksmiths, dressmakers, washerwomen, gloveresses, grocers, butchers and household servants provided for most people's needs.

In 1856 Cradley Girls' School was built on glebeland. In 1910 the Old Boys' School was closed and the boys moved to the same site, where the village school stands today. Storridge School was built in 1875 on land given by Earl Beauchamp and provided for local children until 1946. When it was closed, it was purchased from the Beauchamp family for one shilling and subsequently became the parish hall.

The Church at Storridge (the District Chapelry of St. John the Evangelist) was built in 1856 in memory of the late Rector of Cradley's son, who had died while a student at Cambridge after falling from a horse. The Rector himself (the Reverend Scott Luxmoore) died the following year but his sisters gave the land for a church and vicarage. The church was designed by Frederick Preedy of Worcester and he also designed the stained glass window.

Cradley Chapel, founded in 1823, is one of several in the area, which originally belonged to the Countess of Huntingdon's Connection. This redoubtable lady, a friend of Wesley and Whitefield, founded a theological college and many chapels. Cradley names such as Tudge, Lewis, Dowding and Rann feature in the Chapel Registers of Leigh Sinton and Longley Green in the early nineteenth century.

Although many charities originated with the church, Friendly Societies were very important in the village and old photographs show parades of the Oddfellows, who were linked with the Manchester Unity Friendly Society, founded in 1810. Another group was the Pure Order of United Britons. The year 1894 saw the establishment of Parish Councils, which took over many of the responsibilities handled by the church in past centuries.

(Photographs of Cradley church from the Vinesend, View from Cradley church northwards, View from Cradley church westwards and The Malvern Hills from Chockbury lane)

The names of those who died in the two world wars are on a plaque in the church and on the base of the stone memorial cross in the lane approaching the church, and the church clock was installed by public subscription in their memory. An interesting leather-bound book in the church contains the service records of all those from the village who served in the first world war.

During the Second World War, evacuees came from Birmingham to the school at Storridge and some evacuees were housed in the cottage beyond the Village Hall, The Elms, and also at Lower Nupend, where photographs show mothers and babies being cared for.

The twentieth century saw many changes, as new estates were built and commuters travelled to work elsewhere. The village economy was no longer entirely dependent on agriculture and many of the old trades and crafts disappeared.

However, Cradley to-day still has a number of farms, its own excellent Post Office Stores and Butcher's shop as well as a modern Surgery and Dispensary. The Churches, Chapel and Village Halls provide focal points for worship and for many community activities and entertainments. There is still a strong feeling of identity in the village and interest in its historic past, as well as keen anticipation as it looks forward to the new millennium.

CRADLEY PARISH COUNCIL

Cradley Parish Council is not political but sees its role as being vigilant on all matters which affect the parishes of Cradley and Storridge and their inhabitants. These include road safety, policing and public services such as electricity, water and telephones. It consists of 15 elected members, who meet every month except December on the second Tuesday of the month. Members of the public are invited to attend but may speak only during question time. The Parish Council comments on all applications for planning permission, having a planning committee devoted specifically to this task. The Council also delegates certain other tasks to committees, including the footpaths, churchyards and playing fields committees. The Clerk posts minutes on public notice boards and presents a brief report each month in the Parish Newsletter . Every April an Annual Parish Meeting takes place, when the Parish Council makes a report to members of the public.

(Signatures and picture of full council)

THE CHRISTIAN CHURCH OF ST. JAMES IN CRADLEY

As a part of the living church in this parish, our purpose is to give thanks and praise to God with, and for, everyone, to seek His presence and His will in our lives through the life of His Son Jesus Christ, and to reveal His Love among all people. Every person, and the church building, is an expression of this purpose.

To this end we offer worship to God for all; we offer the sacraments of baptism, confirmation, marriage, and the concluding rites of funerals; with our neighbours in Mathon and Storridge we offer occasions and courses for the discovery of the Christian faith within individuals and our community. We endeavour care.

The pastoral, financial, social and administrative support for this Christian work in the world is sustained by the Parochial Church Council, the churchwardens and the clergy, together with the wider community.

(signatures and pictures of Cradley church, The lichgate and Maclean memorial)

Cradley Church from Vinesend Cradley Church Memorial

THE CHRISTIAN CHURCH OF ST. JOHN IN STORRIDGE

As a part of the living church in this parish, our purpose is to give thanks and praise to God with, and for, everyone, to seek His presence and His will in our lives through the life of His Son Jesus Christ, and to reveal His Love among all people. Every person, and the church building, is an expression of this purpose.

To this end we offer worship to God for all; we offer the sacraments of baptism, confirmation, marriage, and the concluding rites of funerals; with our neighbours in Mathon and Storridge we offer occasions and courses for the discovery of the Christian faith within individuals and our community. We endeavour care.

The pastoral, financial, social and administrative support for this Christian work in the world is sustained by the Parochial Church Council, the churchwardens and the clergy, together with the wider community.

(signatures and photograph of Storridge Church)

Storridge Church

CRADLEY CHURCH SUNDAY SCHOOL

Revived in 1996, Sunday School meets on the second Sunday of each month; we begin our worship in Church before moving across to the village hall where discussions, stories, prayers and craft activities link the week's theme to the children's own lives. This work is led by a large group of skilled adults in a friendly, caring and respectful environment. Children from 2 years of age upwards attend, sometimes with their parents, and visitors are always welcome.

(signatures of children and adults, photographs of Cradley church choir, The junior choir, Sunday school and The orchestra)

CRADLEY CHILDREN'S SINGING GROUP

We meet in Cradley Church on Mondays after school to sing for pleasure and to form a choir, which occasionally sings in concerts in the church and the family service. Some of us later join the main church choir.

(signatures)

CRADLEY CHURCH BELLRINGERS

Cradley Bellringers are part of the Hereford Guild of Bellringers. The ringers practice on Thursday evenings from 7.30 pm until 10.00 pm. The group's objectives are to provide ringers for church services, weddings and other special occasions. Church bellringing is part of English culture and has been performed since the middle ages. It is a skill that requires both physical ability in being able to control a bell, and mental dexterity in being able to follow the complex mathematical methods involved in church bell ringing.

(signatures and photograph of The bellringers in Cradley church)

Bellringers

CRADLEY CHAPEL

Cradley chapel is one of a cluster of churches built by the Countess of Huntingdon in the days of Charles Wesley. It was at a time of great religious revival and the chapel was usually full, including the balcony. The numbers at the Sunday services have dwindled over the years but the witness is still maintained. In 1926, a manse was added and housed a resident minister. In 1980, the whole of the chapel was upgraded and part of the building was made available to other village organisations. Upon the death of the Countess of Huntingdon, a Board of Trustees was appointed. They meet quarterly to discuss matters relating to the chapel and its finances.

(signatures)

HOME GROUP

Christians from various traditions belong to the Home Group, which meets once a month in members' homes for prayer, bible study, discussion and fellowship.

"Bring and share" parties are also held from time to time for those involved and their families.

(signatures)

EVERGREEN CLUB

The Evergreen Club was established over 30 years ago by volunteers in the local community who wished to provide a social club where members of the local villages (Cradley, Storridge and Mathon) over the age of 60 years could meet once a fortnight. It is a WRVS self-funded afternoon tea club run by a wonderful team of volunteers. Members can be transported to the venue if necessary to enjoy a happy social time, with interesting talks or entertainment with many trips organised during the course of the year. Although numbers have dwindled over the past few years the club continues to thrive.

(signatures)

MOTHERS' UNION

The Mothers' Union is a Christian Organisation which promotes the well-being of families world-wide. We achieve this by developing prayer and spiritual growth in families, studying and reflecting on family life and marriage and its place in society. Resourcing our members to take practical action to improve conditions for families both nationally and in the communities in which they live.

(signatures)

WOMEN'S CHRISTIAN FELLOWSHIP

Formed after union of parishes of Cradley, Mathon and Storridge, into one Benefice under Rev. Mark McCausland. He closed the three existing M.U.'s in favour of one ecumenical Women's Group for the benefice, with less rigid rules for the membership. First existing minutes in our possession - October 1979. Membership is 12. Meeting place is Cradley Chapel Schoolroom - monthly 4th Thursday at 2.30 pm. Short opening service followed by a speaker or other activity with religious content. We have a cup of tea and a chat to end the meeting.

(signatures)

Cradley Village Hall

The Village Hall was built in the 15th century, being designed and used as a village school until 1910. It was then adapted for use by the village. The Hall is a grade II* listed building and was only recently de-listed as an ancient monument.

In accordance with the Trust document, the Hall "…shall be held on trust for inhabitants of the Diocesan Parish of Cradley ……… without distinction of political or religious or other opinions including the use of meetings lectures and classes and for other forms of recreation and leisure time occupation with objective of improving the condition of life for the said inhabitants".

Cradley Village Hall has benefited from the hard work of its management committee members over the last twenty years. Their efforts have been responsible for the present preservation of the building, although considerable further work is necessary.

(signatures and photograph of Cradley Village Hall

STORRIDGE VILLAGE HALL

The management committee of Storridge Village Hall is elected at the Annual Meeting to deal with the day-to-day management on behalf of the local Trustees who are appointed by Trust Deed to act for the benefit of the local residents. The hall and the equipment is available to all on this basis and is used regularly by local organisations and residents.

(signatures and photograph of Storridge Village Hall, Cradley W.I. and Storridge W.I.

STORRIDGE WOMEN'S INSTITUTE

The Women's Institute is an organisation for women living in the countryside, providing local social contact, opportunities for education, developing a wide variety of skills, and in raising awareness of matters of concern. Storridge W.I. is affiliated to Worcestershire County and the national Federation. Women's Institutes are non-party political and non-sectarian.

(signatures)

CRADLEY C.E. PRIMARY SCHOOL

Cradley Church of England, Voluntary Aided Primary School is for pupils aged 5 - 11 years, although children are admitted to the school at the beginning of the term in which they reach their fifth birthday. As well as the village of Cradley, the adjacent villages of Mathon and Storridge form the school's catchment area. The school has five classes, two infant and three junior. The older part of the school dates from the mid nineteenth century and is a fine stone building. Three temporary wooden classrooms stand at the rear, and a new library and office were built in 1993. The Governors, the Local Education Authority, the Diocese of Hereford and the Department of Education and Employment are working towards building a replacement school in the near future.

(signatures and two photographs of Cradley C.E. Primary School)

CRADLEY CE PRIMARY SCHOOL GOVERNORS

Cradley Church of England Primary School is Voluntary Aided and has a board of fourteen governors. The head teacher and the rectors sit ex officio. There are seven Foundation Governors, appointed by the Diocese of Hereford and by the PCC's of our united benefice of Cradley, Storridge and Mathon. Other governors are appointed by the Parish Council, the Local Education Authority and by parents and staff.

There are three main committees dealing with Finance, Policies and Buildings, health and Safety. Governors meetings are not open to the public but minutes are available from the Clerk or the school.

The Governors act to ensure that the school maintains its high standards and fulfils all its statutory duties, meeting twice a term and taking advice from the three main committees. The head teacher and staff are responsible for the day to day management of the school and for all professional decisions. Currently the Governors are seeking to build a new school, to bring the facilities in Cradley up to modern requirements.

(signatures)

FRIENDS OF CRADLEY SCHOOL

Friends of Cradley School is a fundraising organisation comprising of parent and other persons who are interested in its aims. The aim of F.O.C.S. is to organise fun and social events for both adults and children to raise money to buy extra equipment and services over and above the essentials provided by the school. There are 4 annually elected positions - Chair, Vice-Chair, Secretary and Treasurer; every parent is automatically a member.

(signatures)

CRADLEY PRE-SCHOOL AND PLAY GROUP

Cradley Pre-School/Playgroup is for 20 children aged 2.9 months to 5 years running 5 mornings and 2 afternoon sessions per week, term time only. It is open from 9.30am until 12 noon and 12.45pm until 3.15pm. Children who attend both morning and afternoon sessions bring a packed lunch with them. We operate from the Scout Hut, which offers both indoor and outdoor areas for the children. We aim to provide a safe and stimulating environment in which all children can reach their individual potential and have a smooth transition from playgroup to school.

(signatures)

CRADLEY PARENT, BABY AND TODDLER GROUP

We are a group of local mothers (and fathers too, sometimes), who meet up to have a chat, a cup of coffee and give our young children a chance to socialise. It's amazing how babies really seem to enjoy the older ones running around and as soon as they can they are in hot pursuit. Children are welcome from birth to around 3 years old, when they tend to move on to the excellent playgroup in Cradley. We meet every Tuesday at 10.30 am until 12 noon at Storridge Village Hall. The cost is £1.00 per family per visit - everyone is welcome.

(signatures)

CRADLEY SURGERY

We are a team of people, doctors, nurses, dispensers and office staff, providing health care to the people of Cradley Village and its rural environments. We provide information, advice, reassurance, time, medicine, technical expertise and concern in varying measures. We are committed generalists, dealing with everything and everybody, and we enjoy the continuity of seeing people and families grow and evolve.

(signatures and photograph of Cradley Surgery)

CRADLEY, MATHON AND STORRIDGE NEWSLETTER

Cradley, Mathon and Storridge Newsletter was started circa 1970, with 3/4 A4 sheets pinned together and formalised in 1972/73. We acquired coloured covers with a line drawing of the 3 churches in the mid-eighties. Advertisements were introduced, and over time it became a 'vehicle' for reporting on village affairs, meetings, fundraising events (forthcoming and past), societies, organisations, doctor's notices etc. Year 2000 subjects included Church Bell restoration, Post Office closures and school relocation. Major reform was undertaken in 1990 when a small committee was established, semi separate to the PCC with its own A/C who reviewed the cover and advert prices, placing them on a formal basis and purchased modern printing M/C's etc. This is a monthly publication with a circulation of 600 plus, edited, printed, collated and distributed entirely (with one exception) by very willing and able volunteers. The Newsletter is self-supporting and any surplus is donated to the 3 PCC's in proportion to the distribution.

(signatures)

CRADLEY, MATHON AND STORRIDGE SUPPORT GROUP

The main function of the support group has been to take people who are without transport to the doctor's surgery, hospitals, dentists, opticians, chiropodists etc. Volunteers also help with shopping and visit and support elderly people, although the service is not limited to the older members of the community. It is available to anyone living in Cradley, Mathon and Storridge and to patients of Cradley Surgery who live elsewhere.

(signatures)

MEALS ON WHEELS

Meals on Wheels started in the late 1950's by the district nurse for Cradley, Miss Dorothy Boucher MBE. The service covers the parishes of Cradley, Storridge and Mathon and a team of volunteer drivers and helpers deliver two hot meals per week to each recipient. The meals cost £2.10p and are available for pensioners, the sick and disabled and other exceptionally needy cases.

(Signatures)

CHARITIES OF RICHARD HILL AND OTHERS

The Charities of Richard Hill and Others was set up with monies which had been left to the Ancient Parish of Cradley by various people dating back to the 1660's These monies were to help the poor and needy. In 1940 the Charities were registered with the Charity Commission under a trust deed and administered by 5 Trustees comprising the Rector of the time, 3 representatives of the Parish Council and a representative of the Malvern Hills District Council. With the changing times, the income from the monies are now distributed at Christmas to elderly residents of the village whom it is felt would benefit from a little extra cash.

(Signatures)

NEIGHBOURHOOD WATCH

The purpose of Cradley neighbourhood Watch is to try to reduce local opportunities for crime, Thereby deterring would-be thieves and vandals. To try and establish a community spirit so that everyone can contribute towards the protection of their property by mutual co-operation and communication. Thirdly, to inform the police of any suspicious activity. Today there are ten watches in Cradley covering different parts of the village.

(Signatures and picture of Sandy Fraser, Neighbourhood Watch)

THE ROYAL BRITISH LEGION

CRADLEY STORRIDGE & MATHON BRANCH

The Cradley Branch of the Royal British Legion exists to promote the relief and need of all those who are eligible for ordinary membership of the Legion. Eligibility is open to all serving and past members of Her Majesty's Armed Forces, their spouses, children and dependants. The land and building are currently leased to the Cradley, Storridge and Mathon Royal British Legion Social Club Limited. Today's membership stands at 131 including associate members.

(Signatures and picture of The Royal British Legion)

Cradley Singers

The choir was originally formed by a churchwarden of Cradley, Carol Holt. There have been a small number of musical directors, the present having been appointed in 1994. In this last year of the current millennium the choir has about forty singers in four parts SATB. The Chairman is Brigadier Bill Backhouse, the Musical Director Dr. Stefan Scot, the Accompanist Mrs. Mary Baron and the Secretary Mrs Lilian Davies. The choir, which must be considered one of the finest and most adaptable choral societies in the County (if not indeed the finest), has a mixed and varied repertoire and because of its size is able to explore less well-known music. Performances in recent years have included an authentic Handel, a concert of jazz, a fully liturgical Monteverdi Vespers (1640) complete with clergy, bells, processions and incense, Evensong at Brecon Cathedral and a world first performance of Simon Frasier's oratorio Paradise Lost for the Three Choirs Festival.

(signatures)

1st CRADLEY SCOUT GROUP

Cradley Scout Group has been around for more than 25 years and is part of the Malvern hills District of the UK Scout Association. Scouting seeks to promote the physical, mental and spiritual development of children from the ages of 6 to 21. The group has three sections; Beavers (6-8), Cub Scouts (8-11) and Scouts (11-15). The Scout Association achieves its aims by an organised programme of events and activities. Badges and awards are used to recognise a child's progress through this programme, which focuses on outdoor skills and the environment.

(signatures and two pictures of 1st Cradley Scout Group

RED LION FOOTBALL CLUB

A local football club, its headquarters being the Red Lion at Stifford's Bridge. Formed to provide the local community with a leisure activity. Following on from the club's success in the Nunnery Wood Summer League, a committee was formed in January 2000, its sole purpose being to elevate the club to affiliated status and members of the Worcester and District Sunday Football League. This has been achieved and league fixtures start on Sunday, 3rd September 2000. The club's home games will be played at Chase High School, Malvern while suitable ground is sought in the village of Cradley.

(signatures)

MATHON, CRADLEY AND STORRIDGE TENNIS CLUB

Mathon, Cradley and Storridge Tennis Club is situated in picturesque surroundings with views to the Malvern Hills. It was founded in a982 and is a venue which offers both social and competitive tennis. There are three courts, two with floodlights, a pavilion and to date 109 members. Three club sessions each week are held and everyone is welcome. For the more competitive, the club is affiliated to the L.T.A. and enters the winter and summer league championships as well as running their own internal championships. Junior and adult coaching courses are arranged throughout the year together with social functions. MCS Tennis Club has an excellent reputation as a club with a friendly atmosphere attracting members from a wide area.

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CRADLEY WALKING GROUP

It is an informal group which started up 5 years ago by Barbara Gilbrook, and meets every Tuesday at 9.30am at the War Memorial. Walks are either from the cross or cars are used to visit surrounding areas for walks. At the end of the walks coffee is provided by different people or occasionally it is a pub lunch. There are approximately 24 members with an average turnout of 10. People take it in turns to lead the walks.

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BUSINESSES IN CRADLEY

Many businesses are run from homes in the villages. These include builders, hairdressers, computer experts, accountants, window cleaners, business advisers and plumbers.

The two shops and three public houses are an integral part of the community life of the villages. As well as providing a valuable service, they also serve as centres where village people can meet, talk and exchange information.

(signatures, photographs of Peter Hodgkiss, The Butcher Shop; Cradley Post Office and Stores; the Seven Stars; The Red Lion.

OTHER RESIDENTS OF THE VILLAGE OF CRADLEY AND STORRIDGE

(signatures, pictures of The Leys, Huntingdon, The Farleys, Oaklands, more signatures from The Leys, maps of Cradley North West, Cradley South West, Cradley Central North, Cradley Central South, Cradley North East, Cradley South East.)




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