The Old Taptonian News Page

Dear Old Taptonian and Partner
Following the Annual General Meeting in October 2015 held at the Loundsley Green Community Centre I write to you as the Chair of the Association to let you know how the organisation is changing.   Since January this year we have had a series of bimonthly meetings at Tapton House  through cooperation with Chesterfield College, who are now the occupiers of the premises.   We have created valuable links which  look promising for future events.   The traditional OTA picnic was held this year on Saturday 25th June and the few people who came seemed to have an enjoyable time.   The next event at The House will be the 2016 AGM on  Wednesday 5th October at 11 am in Room 1 (aka 300) This will be an opportunity to appoint a Committee and Officers to continue the momentum which the Association has  recently generated.    Please come and show your support by sharing ideas and comments.   We have two volunteers who are handling the Association Finances which are still dependent upon Members' Subscriptions.   They will be pleased to receive any payments for this year (£10 per head)   by cheques made out to the Old Taptonians' Association by post with the enclosed membership form as this will help  us to keep in touch with you to secure the future and give us confidence to develop ideas    Please use the enclosed stamped, addressed envelope - it would be good to have your feedback before the end of September.


We have a special event planned for Wednesday the 30th November - A Commemorative Lunch.   This is the 25th year since the closure of Tapton House School so it is appropriate that we take this opportunity to remember and value the experiences we shared.    I have invited Mr Cutforth the Principal of Chesterfield College to be there. He will speak to us about 'Inspiring Futures and Changing Lives'.   Mr David Simmonds who has been the College Vice Principal has been asked to be Master of Ceremonies.   I am hoping there will be an opportunity to read the Tapton House Charter and that guests might feel able to share memories after the meal.   There will only be 30 places at the tables - we are limited by the space available in Room 1 and by the capacity of the cafeteria who will be preparing the meal.    There is a choice of menus - please phone me if you would like a copy or to book a place.  The cost is £15 per head.    Thank you for your continuing support for the OTA and I look forward to welcoming you at Tapton House when you can join us there.
Yours sincerely,

Rev Dr Stan Frost (Current Chair)
@ Tapton 1949 - 1956:
Home Phone: 01246.567184.



OTAgenda on 250616 OLD TAPTONIANS' ASSOCIATION
Proposed  Agenda for our meeting to be held at Tapton House on Saturday 25/06/16 at 11AM.


1. Welcome by Chair and Secretary.

Secretary Len Thompson 06/06/16

 

 

Dear All

If you are on Facebook I would really appreciate it if you could send me a friend request.
My Facebook ID is www.facebook.com/len.thompson.12
I can then keep you up to date with the all old taptonian news.

You will be pleased to know we have another author in our ranks of Old Taptonians.
The person is Noreen Hulteen nee Carless at Tapton 1947 to 1951, formerly of Bolsover but now living in Oregon USA.
Here is a copy of my review of Noreen's book on amazon.com and she has asked me to send you details of the book so you are aware of what she has done and what she is doing to promote Socialism in the USA.
Her Kindle version of the book is available at £2.10 at amazon.com
Regards Len Thompson CEng MIMechE AIQA Retd
Friend of Tony Benn, Former Member of Parliament for Chesterfield
Email: len@lenthompson.net Website: www.lenthompson.net
Secretary of The Old Taptonians Association www.oldtaptonians.co.uk

 

Thanks Len Thompson,

Your latest customer review is live on Amazon. We and millions of shoppers on Amazon appreciate the time you took to share your experience with this item.

  from taptonlen on February 5, 2016
 
Socialism is Not a Dirty Word
 
Here is a review of the book 'Socialism is Not a Dirty Word' by Noreen Hulteen. This book argues the case for Socialism.
The main purpose of the book is to help people to understand that Socialism is merely a label and sets out to answer the question: What Is...
 
See your full review

 

PS As a reminder – the 2015 AGM (last October) raised  the subscription from £5 to £10 per annum.   Payments are now due and cheques can be sent to the Association c/o Tapton House or to me at home.

Best wishes
Stan Frost
Chair of  Old Taptonians’ Association
25 Somersall Park Road
Chesterfield S40 3LD

 

 


THE OLD TAPTONIANS’ ASSOCIATION
Tapton House closed as a senior school in 1991. As we approach the 25th anniversary of this event I am attempting to contact those who attended during its 60 years existence and who are still living in Derbyshire. Since 2014 I have been the chair of the Association and I am working with Len Thompson the secretary to encourage Taptonians of whatever era, including Members of Chesterfield College who continue to use the premises as post school students, to make contact and to help us revive the Association which serves to keep people in touch with one another and which offers varied opportunities for getting together and enabling other events for mutual support or which could fundraise to serve valuable charitable purposes.

For some years we have held a picnic at Tapton House at the end of June. On Saturday 25th June 2016 we have made arrangements to hold the picnic on the Tapton House back lawn, with a general meeting in the House at 11.00am (using the famous ‘Room 1’). At our last General Meeting in October 2015 it was suggested that we try to arrange a regular get together at the House. Since then I have met with Chesterfield College staff and it is possible to meet on the last Wednesday of each month in the Tapton Cafe at 11am (January to June)– our first engagement is Wednesday 27th January. Lunch can be arranged (about £5 per head) if you let me know in advance what you prefer to eat. (Please phone 01246.567184 before 4th January to make a booking).

I wish you well for Christmas and that the New Year will be full of promise and maybe surprises!
Best wishes,
Sincerely
Stan Frost (Chair) and Len Thompson (Secretary)

 

OLD TAPTONIANS'S ASSOCIATION FINANCIAL STATEMENT AT YEAR END 30TH SEPTEMBER  2015
Figures derived from information received from previous Treasurer and transactions on bank statement April - July 2015     (2014  Figures in Italics )

Bank Balances: 30/9/14  = £624.11
30/9/2015 = £381.49

Receipts;
Raffle (Garden Party June 2015) :(Gwen Biggin) £36  2014 Reunion  (£84)
Name labels £5.91     
Subscriptions and Donations: from 26 members   £190  (2014: 88 subs @ £5  £440)
2015 Income:   £192                                                                              2014 Income £571.26

Payments
Cheque 113 Postage and stationery £62.03  (2014; £154.70)
Loundsley Green Community Trust Room Hire (£36)   Ballroom Hire 2014 £192
Creative Directions (Website Hosting) (£250)    OTA Website £250
(Other payments pending: Secretaries Travel expenses £200-£300:   Refund of travel costs paid by Chair £203:                                                                                                 (2014 Secretary's expenses £59.50)  
Copying notices  and binding of accounts (£7.20)   plus sundry stationery expenses.
Likely 2015 Spends:££348.03 (+/- £603)  ( = £951.03)                                    2014 spends:£1037.20


 

AGMMins031015Final261015                      

Dear Old Taptonian and Partner,
Minutes of AGM meeting of the OLD TAPTONIANS' ASSOCIATION


The meeting was held at Loundsley Green Community Centre on Saturday 3/10/15 at 7.30pm
1. Welcome by Chair and Secretary. We had invited those coming to bring some supper to share - or else order fish and chips from the local shop (we discovered that the shop closed at 9.00pm so that fitted in with the arrangements for the meeting).
The Secretary and Chair met with the Centre Caretaker in the afternoon and  arranged the room to provide chairs and table space for 40 attendees.   A book was placed at the entrance to record attendance and apologies - there were 10 members in attendance and apologies received from about 20 others from across Europe.   So it was good to learn that the message about the meeting had been widely received and that the responses confirmed our international status.
We had planned to begin the meeting at 7.30pm and then break for supper at 9.0pm   However, the agenda was curtailed when the discussion wavered about 8.20 and it was clear that the meeting was ready for refreshment.   Teas and coffees were provided and fish and chips were collected for those that needed them.
The Chair and Secretary welcomed members to the meeting and explained that there were no minutes of the last AGM.   This had been held at the Winding Wheel in town last November.  It was at this meeting that the Chair and Secretary had been appointed.   Someone else had been appointed to be Treasurer but subsequently  soon resigned .   Consequently the Association accounts have been gathered from the previous Treasurer and a summary of 2015 figures has been compiled from the notes and bank statements which have been gathered during the year(see attached file). The current bank balance (29th September) is  £381.49.
There had been a written proposal received that the annual subscription for the OTA should be raised from £5 to £10 per annum.   This was agreed with effect  from the beginning of 2016. At the present time the subscriptions information is confused because there has been no systematic recording of payments recently.   We anticipate that this situation will be resolved when we have a Treasurer who can devote time to sorting out the information.
1a. Latest report on old photographs and articles from Tapton Museum 1925-30 before Tapton House became a School, hopefully from Chesterfield or Matlock. The Secretary apologised for the lack of progress in finding any of the missing articles from the Tapton Museum 1925-30. After contacting several people in authority at Chesterfield Museum and Matlock Records Office not one of the list of items has been located. However, due to the probable high value of the items it is our intention to continue our investigation into their whereabouts.
1b. A raffle was held during the meeting. Tickets were sold at £1 each and Gwen and Basil Biggin must be congratulated once more for their contribution to our funds.
1c. Named badges and year started were given out at the meeting to make discussions easier.
2a.Our Proposed Constitution had been distributed for comments with the agenda. It was decided that we would not bother with a Constitution due to several objections by members before and during this meeting. By this time the meeting had agreed  with written comments that there was no demand for the Association to have a Constitution - though the Chair reiterated the value of such a document which describes who The Old Taptonians are        and what we represent. It was made clear in the discussion that there was no future in attempting to change the name of the Old Taptonians Association into The Taptonians Association. The original suggestion derived from conversations held earlier at Chesterfield  College when it had been suggested that current students attending courses at Tapton House might be attracted to joining an organisation which represented their interests if the title was changed. This is despite at least two members of the meeting describing conversations with current students at Tapton who expressed no interest in joining an organisation such as            ours. This gave opportunity to again mention 'the Constitution' so that we could be seen to be active in some aspect of local concern.   The Chair pointed out  that a group of intelligent       and well endowed people such as the OTA were in a good position to energise diverse charitable  organisations and in so doing we would be seen as doing useful things and so become worth supporting. One response was that this would mean the organisation having to change and that  they would be reluctant to do so.   To which the Chair responded? Why not change?
2b. Proposed Election Form for Officers and Committee Members of the Taptonians' Association - at the AGM 3rd October 2015 with this agenda. The Meeting was invited to present nominations for Committee members - including the Officers.
There were no names offered though we had one application form from Miss Jean Helliwell who has volunteered to be a Committee Member and was duly appointed.   Other members will be invited at a subsequent  gathering which is being planned for December.  The Chair explained that he expects to be retiring at the end of the Calendar year after the accounts have been updated..
3. Approval of Minutes of Meeting 3/12/14 at the Olde Farmhouse Loundsley Green already circulated. These had already been approved.
4. Secretaries Report & Status of Website Development. The Secretary advised that the OTA Website was functioning well and all relevant items were being displayed on the site www.oldtaptonians.co.uk within one week of a meeting taking place except where holidays were involved.
5. New Committee Members - Marion Yeldham has declined to become a committee member but is willing to continue with supplying the Grass Roots reports for inclusion in the Derbyshire Times and assisting the Secretary to distribute OTA documents to members who receive them by post. Details of a letter from Marion were distributed via the website giving her comments on the AGM agenda since she was unable to attend the meeting on 3/10/15. Other  members unable to attend the meeting had been invited to inform the  Secretary of their by 30/09/15 at latest. 17 members took advantage of the offer and their comments were discussed and suggestions made as necessary.
6a. Treasurer's Report - This was given by the Chairman and draft accounts prepared in collaboration with Mrs Lynda Langley of Chesterfield College were distributed for approval. Copy attached.

6b. Subscriptions check  to find out which members have paid and when, during the period 2014 to 2015. The Secretary advised one of the major problems was that of the total of approximately 200 members names and addresses received from the former Secretary there were no identification of deceased members. This will be one of our main priorities to establish prior to our next meeting (June 2016 ) and all members will be urged to let the Secretary know the whereabouts of all our colleagues.
7. Recruitment Report by Chair.    The Organisation  needs a Committee and despite several invitations to the meeting there were not positive responses.
The Secretary had to leave the meeting before it closed around 9.10pm.   The date of the planned Tapton House Picnic was confirmed as 25th June 2016.   Since this marks the 25th Year when the School was closed the Chair suggested making it something of a Memorial occasion and this will be discussed with the Chesterfield College who currently occupy the premises.   It was also suggested that we could ask about the possibility of using a room on a regular basis - once a month to hold OTA gatherings of interest to members -  though we have only limited funds to pay for this!

8. Next Meeting - to be held at Tapton House on Saturday 25/06/16 at 11.00amwith a picnic on the sunken lawn weather permitting. If it is raining we will arrange to have our picnic indoors..

Chairman Stan Frost
Secretary Len Thompson 18/10/15

 

 

 

OTAgenda031015Mod OLD TAPTONIANS' ASSOCIATION
 Agenda for our meeting AGM to be held at Loundsley Green Community Centre on Saturday 3/10/15 at 7.30pm – with a bring and share supper.


1. Welcome by Chair and Secretary.

  • Chairman Stan Frost
    Secretary Len Thompson 24/09/15

 

A GENERAL MEETING - for Old and Young Taptonians Agenda
OTA AGM to be held at Loundsley Green Community Centre on Saturday 3/10/15 at 7.30pm – with a bring and share supper.   
A raffle will be held during the meeting.  (Tickets to be sold at £1 each. There will be table for a Bring and Buy Sale.).
Name badges and year started to be available at this meeting  Will members who bought one at our last meeting please remember to bring it with them to make discussions easier.

1. Welcome by Chair  - Introductions
2. Secretary’s Report. - Latest report on old photographs and articles from Tapton Museum 1925-30 before Tapton House became a School, hopefully from Chesterfield or Matlock.
                                   Status of Website Development. 

3. Minutes of Meeting 3/12/14 at the Olde House Loundsley Green already circulated.
Matters Arising.
4. Minutes of 2015 AGM
5. Matters Arising
6. Work in Groups to discuss proposed Constitution – Group leaders please make notes to share with everyone present.
7. Report back from Groups.
8. Reports from Chair on General matters including Recruitment and the Finances. Status of current subscriptions for 2015.
9. Election of Chair, Secretary, Treasurer and Committee Members (5)

 

 

OLD TAPTONIANS' ASSOCIATION

A GENERAL MEETING - for Old and Young Taptonians

3rd October 2015 at the Loundsley Green Community Centre 7.30pm - 9.30pm

Come along, bring your thoughts, opinions, ideas and supper to share as we discuss the reactivation of an organisation established to help encourage and support current and past students from Tapton House. Fish 'n chips can be provided if you book as you arrive.

Come along and decide on objectives the Association needs.

To join as a member, to get elected onto the Committee and to plan future activities We particularly need someone to be Treasurer (training provided) and ideas for fundraising.

More information from Stan Frost (Chair) 01246 567184: stan.frost@homecall.co.uk or
Len Thompson (Secretary) 01483 274535 or len@lenthompson.net

 

 

Dear Old Taptonian and Partner,


Minutes of OTA Committee meeting held at Tapton House on 27/6/15 at 11.00am.

1. Welcome to the meeting by Chair Stan Frost and Secretary Len Thompson  which preceded the unveiling of the remembrance tree for Peter Ashley at 1.00pm and our Picnic.

1a. Photographs and articles from Tapton Museum 1925-30 before Tapton House became a School were projected onto a screen using equipment provided by Chesterfield College. Unfortunately, none of the Chesterfield or Matlock museum items shown in the list had been found even with the assistance of Chesterfield Museum and the Derbyshire Records Office at Matlock.   However, we will continue our search for them and hopefully have them on display the next time we meet (at our AGM to be held at Loundsley Green Community Centre on Saturday 3/10/15 at 7.30pm). Welcome assistance is being provided by Jason Pimborough, History Lecturer of Chesterfield College.

1b. A raffle was held before the picnic - The main prize was a framed fabric Picture of the front of Tapton House  which had been made and donated by Gwen who had organised the raffle. Further prizes of 2 bottles of wine were donated anonymously. Tickets were sold at £1 each.
1c. Name badges and clips were available at the start of the meeting and members were encouraged to purchase them to wear to make discussion easier for everyone. The badges cost £1.20 each  - donations were included with the raffle proceeds. and  £41.97 was banked.

2a. Copies of our Proposed Constitution were distributed and introduced by the Chair.   Members were encouraged to take   away copies to bring back to the AGM when a full discussion will be held prior to preparing a Constitution for the Association.

With reference to the renaming of Old Taptonians Association 3 alternative names were suggested and it was agreed that they would be voted on at our AGM in October.
1) Tapton House Association suggested by Brian Drew
2) Taptonian Association recommended by Tony Fry
3) Retain Old Taptonian's Association by Rusty Barnes and Pamela Kemp

2b. Nomination  forms for the  Proposed Election of Committee Members for The (Old) Taptonians' Association were explained and  members were encouraged to take them away to complete with names of prospective Committee and to return them to the Secretary before 20th September,  so that elections can be arranged at the AGM on  3rd October 2015.

2c.A Report from a meeting at Tapton House 5 May 2015 with members of Chesterfield College was given.

 3a. Minutes of a Meeting 3/12/14 at the Olde House Loundsley Green had been previously circulated.     They were accepted as a true record.

3b. Notes from a meeting with Lynda Langley at St Thomas's Centre 14/5/15 were shared Mrs Langley has been assisting the Chair and Secretary with financial matters relating to the Association.   This was a follow up to earlier  discussion regarding collaboration with the College and the appointment of a Treasurer.    Lynda is a retired member of staff who  taught Accounting.

4. Secretary's Report & Status of Website Development
LT advised that the website www.oldtaptonians.co.uk had been successfully moved from the former host Madasafish stationed in Sheffield at considerable cost in time and money. The site had been modernised and was now being used as the main vehicle for the inclusion of all OTA documents, minutes of meetings and other information.

5.Prospective New Committee Member - Marion Yeldham by co-option and opportunity to be elected at the AGM and Lynda Langley who had been acting temporarily as our Treasurer but due to other duties she was unable to continue working for the OTA. Therefore we need a Treasurer urgently and Lynda has offered to provide training to any OT who is willing to take on that job.  Marion had submitted a Grass Roots Article 12/4/15 for inclusion in the Derbyshire Times issue Thursday 18 June but unfortunately her article did not appear. LT has complained to the D Times and the persons responsible have apologised and agreed to include a report of our committee meeting which LT will submit to them after completing these minutes.

6a. There was no formal Treasurer's Report as the finance documents were being examined by Lynda Langley.   Our Bank deposit is currently about £460. Recent savings of approx £250 have been made by holding the AGM  at Loundsley Green Community Centre and by having a bring a share supper for refreshments on 3/10/15.   Previously the AGM has been held in Town at the Winding Wheel with professional caterers.

6b. In the absence of a Treasurer LT is to continue with his subscriptions check  to find out which members have paid and when, during the period 2014 to 2015. This is proceeding at a very slow pace but has revealed several surprises from OTs who always pays £20 or more each year. This justifies a change from £5 per year to a minimum of £5 per year enabling those people like this member to subscribe more if they wish to do so. LT pointed out that over the last 5 years our members had decreased on average by 10 members per year putting extra stress on our accounts so we need to increase income somehow.

7. Report by  the Chair - Stan Frost has submitted comments on last Saturdays meeting as follows:
It was an open Committee Meeting.   There were several points raised but because of the time constraint there wasn’t time to discuss in detail.   However, these are matters which we can  pick up at the AGM on 3rd October.

Change of name – or not?  
The main reason is to open up the membership and to give opportunity to engage with Chesterfield College who are the current occupiers of Tapton House.   It is now 25 years since the building was last used as a school  and it is appropriate and encouraging that the premises are still largely used for educational purposes.   The intakes are different from what they were when the building was used as a secondary school and the graduates from the College as well as those currently studying might well be see benefits in belonging to an organisation which is long established and which provides support and friendship to those associated with Tapton.   The benefit to the Association is   that this could give broader scope to our interests and enable participation in new enterprises.      To put it bluntly, this provides an opportunity for the Association to survive.   The accounts are based largely upon individual subscriptions and it  has proved a major task to compile an up to date list of paid up members and to keep up with changes in the list due to age related circumstances.   The Association has proved a valuable support to some who have suffered long term illness and to families which have lost loved ones.   This task becomes more important as time goes on.   As personal circumstances change then support for the Association fluctuates and subscriptions are less of a priority.   We would like to think that if we broaden the scope of the membership then we can better ensure that the future will be viable.

What do we do?
We have an opportunity at the forthcoming AGM to elect a Committee of people to become the core team for the Association. They will have to identify who is to be Secretary, Chair and Treasurer.  Their first job will be to create a Constitution so that we can have a published identity which will help with recruitment and also fund raising.   We can compile a set of objectives that will be argued about but which will provide encouragement for certain tasks – The Committee will have to consult and decide what it is that people prefer to include.   There is help available to do this at LINKS (Chesterfield and NE Derbyshire Council for Voluntary Service and Action Ltd which is based in the Town Hall.  

Social Concerns?
The Committee will have to decide what priorities are given to these.   The annual picnic has survived for years – but there might be opportunities for other picnics, lunches or maybe a Dinner from time to time.   Who would we want to invite to speak, Where would we have it- would it help to spread our influence – loads of opportunities to decide on diverse ways forward.   Might these include collaboration with other organisations and support for charities with which many of us might already belong to?

These and other issues will give us much to discuss at the AGM and beyond.   Lets collaborate and pull together an exciting future for those who follow us and for those of us who are older who want to belong to an organisation which is functional, viable and able to address issues helpful to others.

8. Any Other Business - There was no time for this and the meeting closed to give time for coffees before the Tapton House caretaker closed the building at 12.30. This upset timings for the picnic and the unveiling of Peter Ashley's memorial flowering cherry tree. Peter's daughter and family were in attendance and with the fine weather for our picnic they made up for the disappointment of having to finish our proceedings in such an amateurish fashion.

9. Next Meeting - AGM to be held at Loundsley Green Community Centre on Saturday 3/10/15 at 7.30pmwith a bring and share supper.   This is on the 39 bus route to Holme Hall from Town.

Chairman Stan Frost
Secretary Len Thompson 10/07/15

 

 

Agenda for our meeting in Room 1 at 11.00am at Tapton House on 27/6/15




1a. Tapton House Museum Items 1925-30
Tapton House Museum Items from 1925 to 1930 for display at OTA meeting 27/6/15.
I have been trying to trace items from the old Taptonian Museum of 1925 to 1930 i.e. before Tapton House was opened as a school in 1931.
A list in my possession from the Borough of Chesterfield shows the following articles:
Bequeathed by Mrs Scott
Weapons:
3 Bedouin knives
2 Sudanese throwing knives
1 European Dagger
1 Turkish bayonet
1 Arab sword
2 Sudanese Spears
1 Very light pistol

Models: Egyptian
1 Bronze Model Egyptian God Athor
1 Sphinx and scarab in clay (Luxor)

Statuettes
1 God Amen-Ra in wood, plaster covered
2 Statuettes in limestone
1 Head of Sphinx
1 Statuette Resenses the Great (blue clay)

Lamps
6 Egyptian lamps (clay)

Footwear
1 pair Leather Shoes (Egyptian)
1 pair Turkish Shoes

Miscellaneous
1 Inkstand and pen carrier in brass (Egyptian)
10 coins of various countries, mainly (Egypt, Turkish, Greek and Roman)

Presented by GFR Griggs Esq
2 Boxes of Fossils, 1 Box of Fossils and Shells, 4 cases containing 2 Squirrels, Owl, Magpie and Jay Field Voles.

I have been in touch with Maria Barnes of Chesterfield Museum referring her to my book 'A History of Tapton House' which refers to several other items that were in the Tapton Museum without success.
So can you point me in the right direction and people I can contact quickly to give me a chance of borrowing any of the above items for display at Tapton on 27/6/15 at our committee meeting/picnic.
Regards Len Thompson
CEng MIMechE AIQA Retd - Secretary - Old Taptonians Association.

 

2a. Copies of our Proposed Constitution to be distributed for comments.

Introduction:

In November 2014 the Old Taptonians' Association held an AGM at which the then Committee of 3 members resigned en bloc. There were only 3 nominations for a new Committee and they were elected as Secretary, Treasurer and Chair. The person elected as Treasurer subsequently resigned however and so there are now just two Committee members who are striving to find the best way forward for the Association.   
It was a big surprise to discover that the OTA had been working without a Constitution - presumably this is because when it was set up (probably in the early 1950's - ( we have not been able to recover any historic documents related to the OTA and what it has done or aims to do) - a Constitution was not seen to be necessary at that time and it has survived as an informal group of old friends (school chums) who have been happy to leave it all to the small dedicated group of officers who collected subs and organised the AGM, annual picnic and not much else. - So the new small committee has been faced with deciding which way forward the Association should go. There were about 50 members at the last AGM and they chose to vote to elect a small committee to carry on rather than voting to disband the organisation - this was the option given by the then Chair person.
The current Chair has consulted with Chesterfield College (the current occupants of Tapton House) and the Derbyshire Links (Community Services) who have provided guidance on compiling a constitution for an Unincorporated Association.  -This is 2 or more persons bound together for common non -business purposes. Each may have mutual duties and obligations and there will be rules which define who controls the association and its funds and on what terms. Members can join or leave at will. The rules are embodied in a Constitution to create a contract between the members. The Constitution will ensure that the group's aims are clear and agreed -
So, as a group we have to decide what we want to do - What can we do? What do we need as members?
Do we have particular issues/topics which we need to support - for example - Conservation of Tapton House?
We need to be clear on how decisions are taken and how the Committee and Officers are appointed.
Describe how to amend the Constitution - so that we are not stuck with what we decide at the beginning.
Describe how the group should wind up and what happens to its assets. These are largely members' subscriptions but once we have a Constitution we are in a position to apply for grants and other funding to help our objectives.

Deciding on a Name:

We have an opportunity to collaborate with Chesterfield College and to welcome those who have been using the House since 1991 when it closed as a school. We could create a title which is more inclusive than that of the Old Taptonians' Association - should we decide on something different? The Taptonians' Group,  All Taptonians Together?  - or what's your choice? Let us know at the AGM on October 3rd at Loundsley  Green Community Centre. when we can adopt a title that people are happy with.

What Aims and Objectives do we have?

If we want to campaign for something it will be easier to do so if we say so here! If we want to support particular charities - which would you prefer to be listed? Do we want to create opportunities for our members to socialise and arrange outings and other events?  How about an annual dinner? - for members and friends - plus what else could we do together? Working with the College membership (the New Taptonians) we could define significant projects which the membership might feel happy to work with - may be collaborating with schools in Chesterfield to encourage education activities which supplement the curricula they have to deal with? - It is up to us to decide what we could manage or contribute to.

The Powers:

We need to give ourselves authority to rent or purchase space, equipment or vehicles and to avoid  vicarious liability (being responsible for the acts of others). At this stage we ;can't visualise employing anyone but we need to give ourselves the authority to retain and pay freelancing consultants, other organisations or others who might prove useful to the organisation for this we will need to have the authority to raise funds and apply for contributions , grants or subscriptions, fees and loans as appropriate to achieve the aims of the group. We should also give ourselves the freedom to affiliate with local or national groups or other associations that the Management Committee considers appropriate  - or to disassociate from any groups if the continued relationship is considered against the Association's interests.

The Membership:

This is another topic which needs consideration and discussion.   Do we want one grade of membership- or several? Do we want to impose restrictions? - if so which? Do we want to encourage Associate Members - partners of full members? What is a full member? - Can everybody have equal voting rights?  Can membership be terminated and for what reason?    Shall the Committee have the authority to terminate membership of those who break the rules or bring the Association into disrepute. If so, there should be a right of appeal to the Management Committee which would make the final decision.

General Meetings:

Ordinary General Meetings could be held quarterly to discuss activities and plans. Members should receive 14days notice. Resolutions should be passed by a simple majority and the Chair has a casting vote.   Meetings need a quorum of one fifth of the membership or 10 members.  There can also be Special, Emergency or Extra ordinary General Meetings. Special General Meetings may be called by the Management Committee or 10 members signing a requisition with 21 days notice of the meeting and details of the business to be discussed.

Management Committee:

This should comprise not less than 5 and not more than 10 members elected at the AGM. The Management Committee will elect the officers at their first meeting: Secretary, Treasurer and Chair. Applications to be nominated for the Committee should be with the Secretary at least one week before the AGM. The Committee should decide how many times to meet during the year and that the decisions will be agreed by majority vote - the chair retaining authority to have a casting vote if necessary. The Committee have authority to co-opt members as necessary. They will have Committee voting rights and remain in office until the next AGM. The Committee can appoint sub committees as the need for them arises. Any proposed expenditures however will first require approval by the main Committee. The Committee should meet a minimum of 3 times per year.

Funds and Finance:

All Committee Members have a shared responsibility for the funds. Expenditure should be agreed only if it is to support the aims of the organisation. A bank account may have several signatories of which there should be 2 signing for any cheque payments. Management accounts should be produced for each Committee meeting. The financial year should run from 1st April to 31st March. It will be up to the Committee in collaboration with the Treasurer to decide on a budget for the organisation based upon resources available.

Constitutional Amendments:

These must be authorised by Special General Meeting or a Special Resolution at an AGM of which due notice has been provided (21 days).
There will be flipcharts available at the meeting on 27th June and your are invited to write your ideas and suggestions for what the Association should or could be doing.

Please indicate if you are prepared to help organise a programme of events for the coming year - make sure you leave your name and contact details.

Many thanks.
Stan Frost (Chair12/5/2015)



2b Proposed Election Form for Officers and Committee Members of The Taptonians' Association - at the AGM 3rd October 2015.

Name:

Date of Birth:

Home Address:

Email address:

Which Position are you standing for?

Proposed by:                                                           Seconded by:

Brief Statement of Why you want to be appointed:

Summarise the work experience you  are prepared to  share to support the Association:

Your Signature & Date:

 

 

2c. Report from meeting at Tapton House 5 May 2015 with members of Chesterfield College

Meeting with Elisabeth Downes, (Head of Higher Education), Lynda Langley( Retired Accountancy Lecturer) and Jason  Pimborough (Current staff member - Lecturer,-Historian and Police Officer).
We each introduced ourselves and I had an opportunity to share some thoughts on a Revised Taptonian's Association.   - An organisation which could represent everyone who has been associated with Tapton House and Grounds over the years.   It could be organised to support those currently working at Tapton (as students and all categories of staff) - as well as those who attended Tapton House as a School between the 1930s and 1990s.   What was a school has now been transformed into a significant College with links to Derby and Sheffield Hallam Universities.   To an old student of the school this represents an appropriate and encouraging evolution which has been endorsed by significant investment from Government Funding bodies to enable the interior to be transformed in many ways to create an appropriate environment for contemporary higher education.    As an Association we have an opportunity to support those who study and those who work to maintain the premises  and atmosphere of the place.
The Association needs a different title and a new  enthusiastic committee to take it forward and keep it relevant to the future.   The current Chair and Secretary were elected by default at the last AGM of the Old Taptonians' Association (OTA).   In our seventies (!) We replaced officers who had been in post for over 10 years.   So clearly there is a need for younger officials and I was invited to suggest a list of tasks which committee members could be encouraged to take on.   Primarily we require a competent Treasurer currently the Secretary is dealing with the finances of the Old Association.   There is a modest amount in the Natwest Current Account (about £300).   Bearing in mind the outgoings which currently are postage, room rents and travel expenses this will not last  long.  We have a nomination form available for prospective Committee members and there are certain tasks which are readily identifiable.  


Primarily we need a Treasurer - with appropriate accountancy or similar experience.   We need someone to encourage membership and   members to get to know each other.  Currently Len, our OTA Secretary is valiantly sorting out the membership list and deciding how to catch up with subscriptions. A Membership Person (or two) would be a team to help members keep in touch with one another.   A Secretary to take over where Len will leave off and a Chair Person - to handle the establishment of the New Association which will probably need tact and diplomacy to deal with criticism which might well derive from the long established membership of the OTA.   They will have to be encouraged to recognise the value and potential of a New Organisation and to agree that the remainder OTA funds can be transferred to the Taptonians' Association.
There is scope for having various events - both at Tapton House  and elsewhere.    So we need an Events Co-ordinator to liaise with House staff and outside bodies organising perhaps a dinner, a dance, cheese and wine events, other evening or weekend gettogethers? A Publicity Officer     with social Media experience who  could work with the Chesterfield College Media group.   Someone interested in being a Conservation Officer - to help share concerns for the  Building and the grounds - to liaise with the staff and the  Borough Council  (the owners of the Property)   - we expect to invite the Council to nominate one of their members to join the Taptonians' Committee.   The College currently arranges several Open Days each year so an Open Day Coordinator could represent the Association and keep in touch with opportunities for promoting what we are and what we hope to achieve to the general public.  We did consider the prospect of having a portable roll up poster explaining the objectives of the Taptonian's Association - but this would need doing after the first General Meeting when members will have opportunity to make suggestions on future objectives.   It was also agreed that we should approach the Derbyshire Times (Lynda has a good contact) to do an illustrated feature on Tapton and what it represents - comparing present and past experiences and pictures.
The proposed new Constitution (the first!) will define the objectives and overall meaning of the Taptonians' Association.  To what extent do we want to be involved with charitable work or fund raising for good causes and maybe conservation projects for the land and buildings at Tapton?   What kind of events would we support? - Plays or Jazz on the lawn? Brass Bands? maybe?  An evening for Tapton Talent - come and show/share what you do - as your job or your hobby?
Student Support Officer - someone to liaise with College staff and existing pastoral and counselling services to keep in touch with students in College and afterwards.   We hope that there might be someone out there with the right kind of experience to be usefully involved with this aspect of membership.
Although some of these issues are likely to be discussed at the AGM planned for Saturday evening 3rd October, It was pointed out that many of the current students might prefer a different kind of meeting on another occasion.   It was considered that the new committee could arrange another event after the AGM - maybe at Tapton House at a date to be negotiated with the current student body.
The meeting concluded about 4.30 with promises to keep in touch and to promote the idea of the Association to encourage enthusiastic responses to what we would like to achieve.
Stan Frost (OTA Chair)
6th May 2015

 

3a OTA Minutes Mod 121214
Minutes of the inaugural meeting of The Taptonian Association Committee
held at 10.15am on 3 December 2014 at the Olde House, Loundsley Green.

  • 1. Welcome - was made by Chair Stan Frost to Secretary Len Thompson, apologies from Treasurer Sue Hunt and prospective Recruitment Officer Graham Turner and Assistant Secretary Marion Yeldham, unable to attend but will be co-opted onto the committee when they do attend.
  • 2. Adoption of Constitution - Chair provided details of a sample constitution provided by the Links organisation that we can use. The SUMMARY stated that a constitution should:

  • Ensure that a group's aims are clear and agreed
    Describe the geographical or topic area
    Indicate how decisions are made and disputes resolved
    Show how the committee and officers are appointed
    Say how the constitution can be amended Describe how the group should wind up and what happens to its assets

  • 3. Approval of Minutes - no minutes had been generated by the previous committee.
    It was agreed that minutes of all new committee meetings will be circulated within 1 week of the meeting taking place and circulated to all members to increase participation of all.
  • 4. Secretaries Report & Status of Website Development
    Secretary referred to numerous problems we had faced with updating our website through the difficulty of communications via the previous hosts Madasafish of Sheffield over a period of 10 years.
    The new site www.taptonhouse.co.uk is nearing completion and all members will be urged to increase their participation by providing old photos and stories of their time spent at the school to increase their value for money. It was stressed that we should all make greater use of the website and email more now to reduce travel costs. Marion Yeldham would be asked for her assistance with sending out documents to members who do not have access to the Internet.
    LT reported the visit on 17 September of the Mayor of Chesterfield Alexis Diouff and some of his council staff to Tapton House for the opening ceremony of the replacement Wrought Iron Gates. It was also a celebration of Peter Ashley, a 1940 pupil who had been instrumental in harassing the council for many years to replace the Gates, remove the Ivy from all sides of the house which was causing massive maintenance costs, the costs of the Maze in the park and the installation of the Blue Plaque on the front side of the house in partnership with Marion Yeldham.
    Unfortunately Peter had died in July but not before he had seen the new gates in situ. In recognition of Peter's efforts the council have agreed to plant a remembrance tree, a Flowering Cherry sometime this month.
    LT to write to the Mayor of Chesterfield and Councillors thanking them for their efforts regarding WI Gates and the remembrance tree for Peter.
    LT to write to the principal of Chesterfield College after initial contact by SF
    LT also advised that he had managed to organise with the Chesterfield Museum a display of Old Taptonian memorabilia after seeing the display of  Chesterfield Grammar School at the museum.
    Unfortunately our display did not match up to the grammar school's neither in time nor in quantity.
    LT was asked to write to the museum asking for a repeat showing next year but this time being better advertised, longer and including more of the old Tapton House memorabilia from when the house was a museum, before it became a school in 1931.
    LT read out a letter from Marion Yeldham, copy attached, of her draft 'grass roots' notice regarding the OTA Reunion meeting on 7/11/14 which she had sent to the Derbyshire Times on 10 November but it hadn't appeared in the 20th or 27th of November editions. She had rung the Assistant Editor each week and she was told they would look into it but as to-date she had heard nothing. LT requested to write to the D Times to backup Marion's request for action.
  • 5. Treasurers Report - No receipt yet of promised accounting documents from Barrie Birkin ex Treasurer.
  • 6. New Committee Members - Graham Turner and Marion Yeldham will be co-opted hopefully at our next meeting.
  • 7. Recruitment Report - With our ever decreasing membership due to old age, discuss ideas of inviting past and present pupils and staff at Chesterfield/ Hallamshire College with the possibility of  joining us in a new The Taptonians Association.
    LT/GT to contact each OTA member for their friends details of their year so we can contact them. Suggest a minimum of £5/year in case anyone wants to pay more than the minimum.
  • 8. Any Other Business
    SF provided LT with a copy of the Links CVS - Pre-Funding Appointment Questionnaire which needs completing in order for us to apply for funding for several projects to be discussed in detail prior to the application being made.
    The possibility of reducing costs of the AGM/get-together in November 2015 by replacing the Winding Wheel with the Loundsley Green Community Centre. Much cheaper and free car parking.
    SF to contact the College Principal with our ideas of new members from Tapton House.

  • 9. Next Meeting - suggest  last Saturday 27th June 1915 - day of the picnic. If earlier try organising the meeting via use of Telephone and Email to restrict travelling to a minimum.

Signed Len Thompson - Secretary
Stan Frost - Chairman

 

3b OTA Meeting 140515
Notes for OTA meeting held at St Thomas's Centre on Thursday 14 May 2015 at 15:00
Present - Stan Frost OTA Chair, Len Thompson OTA Sec, Lynda Langley Acting OTA Treasurer
Apologies - Liz Downes– head of He and oversees the Tapton Campus
Jason Pimborough
There was no set agenda and the following were notes taken during the meeting.

Accounts - LT handed the accounts to LL who will review them and produce a new set of accounts for 2014/2015. These will follow on from the Year End of 2013/2014. LL will suggest new accounting procedures following the review and will, for the moment, act as Treasurer.

LT will email all members to identify who has paid their membership subscription and the amount paid. At the moment it is a £5.00 fee but some members have donated a higher fee.

For the financial year 2013/2014 at total of £425.00 was paid with the majority of the monies being received in November - no receipts were issued.

Publicity - LL handed details of her contact at the Derbyshire Times to LT - Michael Broomhead, a reporter at the DT, is willing to produce an article about the Association. His contact details are:-

Michael.broomhead@derbyshiretimes.co.uk

Picnic 27 June 2015 - SF had a draft copy of the name badge that will be issued at the picnic. After discussion it was agreed that is would be amended to include NAME and SCHOOL YEAR. SF will have this printed at Copy and Print Centre in Chesterfield.

A display stand measuring 6'/7' x 8' will be erected to house items during the picnic.

LT will attend Tapton House on 25 or 26 June to set up the display. A computer is to be available for use with a DVD of photographs. It is envisaged that this could be shown on a loop onto the Interactive whiteboard.

A raffle is to be held during the picnic - a prize of a small drawing of the House has been donated. It was agreed that further prizes could be purchased. Tickets are to be sold at £1.00 per ticket.

Tapton House Museum Items - Chesterfield Museum (Moira) have no trace of any items from the Tapton House Museum from 1925 to 1930s, however these are listed in LT's book. LT is to contact JP to ask if he can assist in locating these items.

Proposed Constitution - LF has sent a copy of the proposed Constitution to Sandra Pink at Linksline in Chesterfield. This is to ensure its accuracy.

Advertising banner - the production of this is to be discussed after the picnic.

Date, time and venue for the next meeting is to be arranged.
The meeting closed at 16:00 hours.

 

5 Grass Roots D Times 120415

Dear Marion

Here is a draft copy of a letter you may wish to send to GRASS ROOTS of the D Times for their 25 June edition.  Please modify where you see fit.

Reunion: The Old Taptonians Association (OTA) will hold its Summer reunion on Saturday 27 June at Tapton House, Chesterfield. The event will start at 11.00a.m. when OTA's will have access to the house until 13.00 where we can wallow in our annual shot of nostalgia. We also plan to have many photos on show including the school photos of 1951, 1954,1957, 1958 and 1963 plus lots of individual classes from 1931 thru 1991. Tea/Coffee and biscuits will be provided.

At 13.15 we plan to have an unveiling of a flowering cherry tree in remembrance of Peter MM Ashley (OT 1940-45). Peter was the main protagonist in the conservation of Tapton House during the years since its closure as a school in 1991.

This will be followed by our annual picnic (OTA's to bring their own – to share) on the sunken lawn behind the house. Here ex pupils will be able to renew friendships and exchange reminiscences in the gardens of the house. It will give us an opportunity to discuss what we want the OTA to do in the future. Should it rain we hope to carry on our activities in the house.

For more information contact Len Thompson (Secretary OTA) on
Tel: 01483 274535 Email: len@lenthompson.net Website www.lenthompson.net

PS All OTAs will be welcome to join us in Room 1 at 11.00a.m.for our first Committee Meeting since last year's AGM in December 2014.
Please let me know if you plan to attend this important event.

Regards Len Thompson - Secretary OTA, Stan Frost - Chair OTA, Marion Yeldham - Supporter OTA

 

 

6b. Subscriptions check to find out which members have paid and when, during the period 2014 to 2015 due to lack of detail from previous committee.

115 114 213 112 1110 Name Surname Address3 Year Email Date Amount Paid
? P P P P Brenda Allen Chesterfield 1954 Email Yes
? P P Dorothy Ambrose Cutthorpe Post Yes
? Vera Amos Post Yes
? Iris Armitage 1949 Email Yes
? P P Trevor Armstrong New Tupton 1952 Email Yes
? Maureen Ashton Newbold 1956 Post Yes
? P P5 P5 P N.J. Atrill S42  7EB 1954 Post Yes
? P P P P Rita Austin Northampton 1944 Post Yes
? P Des Baker Bristol 1949 Email Yes
? P Ms Diane Band Scarcliffe Email Yes
? Anne Bannister Chesterfield Post Yes
? P P P P Sheilah M. Barber Chesterfield Email Yes
? P Alan Barlow Leicester Post Yes
? P P P P5 Ms Pat Barnes Newton 1949 Post Yes
? P Ms Denise Bates Chesterfield 1974 Email Yes
? MsMargaret Beasley Chesterfield 1958 Post Yes
? Alan Bellamy 1949 Email Yes
? P P P Clive Benson Chesterfield 1954 Post Yes
? Dorothy Beresford Chesterfield 1941 Post Yes
? Paul Best 1972 Post Yes
? P P P P  Basil Biggin S40 4HG 1945 Post Yes
? P P P P Brenda Bilton Wingerworth Post Yes
? Karen Bingham Chesterfield Post Yes
? Sheila Bishop 1949 Email Yes
? Tim Booth 1972 Email Yes
? Lewis&Pamela Bradley Chesterfield Post Yes
? P P Carol Brannon 1957 Post Yes
? Melvyn Branson 1957 Post Yes
? P5 P5 P Graham O. Browett S40 3LB 1944 Post Yes
? P P5 Alan J. Browne Chesterfield Email Yes
? John Bruno 1972 Post Yes
? P P P P Martin Bruno Chesterfield Email Yes
? P P P P Patricia Buckley Banchory Post Yes
? P P James T Burdett 1954 Post Yes
? P5 P5 P5 P5 Roy Buxton S40 2TE Post Yes
? P Alan Buxton Northampton Email Yes
? P P P P T. A. Bytheway Chesterfield 1952 Post Yes
? P P P P Jim Carter Chesterfield 1962 Email Yes
? P Ian Caston Email Yes
? P Gill Chapman Spondon Email Yes
? P P P George Cheetham Chesterfield Email Yes
? P P5 P P Mavis A. Clark Chesterfield Post Yes
? P P P Mavis Clough Chesterfield 1940 Post Yes
? P P P Brian Colley Chapel-en-le-Frith Post Yes
? P P P P Lynne Crookes Brough Post Yes
? P Richard Cross Brigg Email Yes
? P P P P Doreen E. Cutt Chesterfield 1946 Post Yes
? P P Judith Daniels Staffs. Email Yes
? P P P P Peter Davies Sheffield Email Yes
? P P P P Joyce Denton Clowne Post Yes
? P P P DrRobert W. Doughty Northumberland 1954 Email Yes
P10 P P P P Brian Drew Middlesex 1950 Post Yes
? P P P P Frank Duckmanton Notts Email Yes
? Pat Duke Shropshire Post Yes
? Andrew Else 1957 Post Yes
? David Evans 1949 Email Yes
? P Iris Eyre Chesterfield Post Yes
? P P P J. M. Ferguson Derby 1944-49 Post Yes
? P P P P Sandra Finlayson Hertfordshire 1953 Email Yes
? P Brian Finney Buxworth 1953 Email Yes
? P Janet Finney Chesterfield Post Yes
? Pat Ford 1949 Email Yes
? P5 Adrian Francis Chesterfield Post Yes
? P PP P P Stan&Eileen Frost Chesterfield 1949/47 stan.frost@homecall.co.uk
? P PP P P Eileen Frost 1948 stan.frost@homecall.co.uk
? Anthony Fry Dronfield 1953 Post Yes
? P2 W. M. Furness Chesterfield Post Yes
? P P P P Lesley Gambles Chesterfield 1954 Email Yes
? Andy Genn 1972 Post Yes
? Beryl George Chesterfield 1954 Post Yes
? P P P P Enid Gilthorpe Chesterfield Email Yes
? P5 P5 P5 William Girdwood Chesterfield 1946 Post Yes
P0515 Ruth Girling 1951 Email Yes
? Simon Gordon 1972 Post Yes
? Clive Gorman St Helier Post Yes
? P P P P Margaret C. Gray Chesterfield Post Yes
? P P P P Doreen M. Green Chesterfield 1946 Email Yes
? P P P P Christine Green 1961 Email Yes
? George A. Hague Pilsley 1939 Post Yes
? P P P Margaret April Hall Chesterfield 1950-55 Post Yes
? P P P P Sylvia Hall Mansfield 1949 Post Yes
? P P P David Hanson Chesterfield Email Yes
? P Margaret Harris Chesterfield Email Yes
? Deborah Hasman Chesterfield Post Yes
? P P P5 P5 Gloria V. E. Havenhand Marsh Lane 1956 Email Yes
? P20 P20 Margaret Hays Chesterfield 1954-59 Email Yes
? P Alan Hays Email Yes
? P Joan Heath Old Brampton Post Yes
? P Sandra J. Heathcote Sandiacre Email Yes
? P P Roland Herbert Chesterfield 1944 Post Yes
? Sharon Hibbert Post Yes
? P P P P Martin Higginbottom East Yorkshire 1949 Email Yes
? Anne Hitchens 1949 Email Yes
? Barry Hollis 1949 Email Yes
? P p Merry Holmes Chesterfield Post Yes
? P P Margaret Hopkinson Chesterfield Post Yes
? P P P P Roy W. Houghton Chesterfield 1946 Post Yes
? P P P P27 Elizabeth Hughes Darley Dale Email Yes
? P P P Gordon Insley Duffield 1958 Email Yes
? PP10 PP Philip Johnson Derbyshire 1964 Email Yes
? Richard Jolley 1972 Post Yes
? Maureen Jones Colchester Post Yes
? P15 P15 P15 Michael Julian Chesterfield 1953 Email Yes
? P P5 Greg Kelly Chesterfield Email Yes
? P P P P Pamela M. Kemp Chesterfield 1945 Email Yes
? P P P P Dr&MJohn C. Kerslake Hartford, Northwich 1956 Email Yes
? P P P MsPriscilla L. Kitt Chesterfield Post Yes
? Dave Laming 1972 Post Yes
? P P Janette Lawson Chesterfield 1951 Email Yes
? P Ronald Lee Chesterfield Post Yes
? Kay  Leslie(Bingham) Email Yes
? Angela E. Lomas Newark Post Yes
? P P P P Anne Lowry Chesterfield Post Yes
? P P P P Thelma Maclean Bolsover 1953 Post Yes
? P P P Diana Maclean Chesterfield 1952 Post Yes
? P P P P Blanche Maclean Chesterfield 1948 Email Yes
? P P P P Pauline Malia S40 2JH Email Yes
? P Kathryn Marchetta Chesterfield Post Yes
? P K Marples Post Yes
? P Susan E. Marshall Chesterfield Post Yes
? P P5 P Malcolm Matthews Nottingham 1953 Email Yes
? P P P Melvyn Matthews S44 6UJ Email Yes
? P P P P Sue McCormack Cumbria 1963 Email Yes
? P Ian McMillan Chesterfield Post Yes
? Stuart Mellor 1957 Email Yes
? P P P P Brian Millard 1952 Email Yes
? P P P J Moulder Chesterfield Post Yes
? Brian Mundy Notts Post Yes
? P P Gary Newton Notts Email Yes
? P P5 Malcolm Nicholas Upper Langwith 1950 Email Yes
? P P P Margaret E. Nisbet Chesterfield 1957 Post Yes
? P P P P Shirley M. Orme Chesterfield 1940 Post Yes
? P P P P Margaret Orwin Chesterfield 1949 Email Yes
? P P P P B. J. Palmer Chesterfield 1952 Post Yes
? P Alan Palmer Appleby 1951 Email Yes
? P P P P Patricia N. Parker S41 8SA Post Yes
? Sheila Peach 1949 Email Yes
? P P P P28 Mr&David S. Pearson Derby 1956 Email Yes
? P P P Robert Pearson Chesterfield Post Yes
? Margaret Pollard Email Yes
? P10 P10 P5 P5 Tom Porter Sheffield Email Yes
? P P P P Marian E. Potter Caythorpe 1954 Email Yes
? P P P P5 Janet Poyser Chesterfield 1967 Email Yes
? DrMartin Pucci Aberdeenshire Post Yes
? P5 P15 P5 Keith Renshaw Bakewell 1949 Email Yes
? P Joan Riggott Nr.Trowbridge, Wilts 1943 Post Yes
? Yvonne Robinson Chesterfield Post Yes
? P P P P Mr&Bill W. Rodgers Notts 1945 Email Yes
? P Janice Rodgers Chesterfield Post Yes
? P P Alan W. Roe Chesterfield 1963 Email Yes
? P P P Peggy Rossington S40 2JP 1949 Email Yes
? P5 Rachel Rush Chestefield Email Yes
? P5 P5 DrKeith Scoffham Whitley Bay Email Yes
? P P P P Allan Senior Matlock 1953 Email Yes
? Jonathan Shedd Chesterfield 1972 Post Yes
? P Sandra Sheppard Cardiff 1954 Email Yes
? p David Simpson Peterlee Post Yes
? Joan Smith 1949 Email Yes
? Julie Smith Mansfield Post Yes
? P Eric Edward Smith Northants. 1938 Email Yes
? P P Margaret Speed Chesterfield Post Yes
? P P P Jackie Squire West Midlands Post Yes
? P Brenda Stenton 1944 Post Yes
? P P P P Ms Anne Stephenson 1973staff Post Yes
? P P Mary Stowe Herts. Email Yes
? P P M. Sullivan Liverpool 1937/43 Post Yes
? P Ron Taylor Chesterfield Post Yes
P5 P Pd Len Thompson Surrey len@lenthompson.net
? P P P P Olive Tinker Chesterfield Post Yes
? Wayne Trewick 1972 Post Yes
? P P P Brian Trueman Sheffield died 15/6/15
? P P P Graham Turner Alcester 1949 Email Yes
? P P Eric Twelves Email Yes
? P P P P5 Anne Utridge Chesterfield Email Yes
? Tim Vaughan 1972 Post Yes
? P P Gordon Vickers Chesterfield 1953 Email Yes
? P P P John E, Vintiner Northants Email Yes
? Peter Wagstaffe 1947? Email Yes
? P P Gill Wahlers Farnsfield Email Yes
? Sybil Walker Chesterfield 1943 Post Yes
? P25 P25 P20 Brian Walkley 1944 Email Yes
? P P P P Pauline Ward Chesterfield Email Yes
? P. Watkinson Chesterfield Email Yes
? P P P P Elizabeth Watkinson Chesterfield 1954 Email Yes
? Mr&MNeil Watson West Midlands Post Yes
? P Roger Webb Holmesfield 1949 Email Yes
? P P P P J. Michael Wharton Nottingham 1952 Email Yes
? A. J. Wilde Herts Post Yes
? Tim Wildman 1972 Post Yes
? P P P P Jean Wilkinson Holmewood 1962 Email Yes
? P P P P Dr John Wilkinson Chesterfield Email Yes
? P P P Philip Winterton Elborough Email Yes
? P P P P Michael Woodhouse Chesterfield 1954 Post Yes
? P Sandra Woodisse Ashbourne Post Yes
? Jackie Woodruffe Derby Post Yes
? Alan Wright Dronfield Post Yes
? Sue Wright Sutton Scarsdale Post Yes
? P5 P5 P5 Ms Marion Yeldham Chesterfield 1951 Post Yes
? 475 525 570 620 Totals

 


 

Previous OTA Minutes

OTA Minutes Mod 121214

Minutes of the inaugural meeting of The Taptonian Association Committee held at 10.15am on 3 December 2014 at the Olde House, Loundsley Green.

1. Welcome - was made by Chair Stan Frost to Secretary Len Thompson, apologies from Treasurer Sue Hunt and prospective Recruitment Officer Graham Turner and Assistant Secretary Marion Yeldham, unable to attend but will be co-opted onto the committee when they do attend.

2. Adoption of Constitution - Chair provided details of a sample constitution provided by the Links organisation that we can use. The SUMMARY stated that a constitution should:

* Ensure that a group's aims are clear and agreed

* Describe the geographical or topic area

* Indicate how decisions are made and disputes resolved

* Show how the committee and officers are appointed

* Say how the constitution can be amended

* Describe how the group should wind up and what happens to its assets

 

 3. Approval of Minutes - no minutes had been generated by the previous committee.

It was agreed that minutes of all new committee meetings will be circulated within 1 week of the meeting taking place and circulated to all members to increase participation of all.

 

 4. Secretaries Report & Status of Website Development -

Secretary referred to numerous problems we had faced with updating our website through the difficulty of communications via the previous hosts Madasafish of Sheffield over a period of 10 years.

The new site www.taptonhouse.co.uk is nearing completion and all members will be urged to increase their participation by providing old photos and stories of their time spent at the school to increase their value for money. It was stressed that we should all make greater use of the website and email more now to reduce travel costs. Marion Yeldham would be asked for her assistance with sending out documents to members who do not have access to the Internet.

LT reported the visit on 17 September of the Mayor of Chesterfield Alexis Diouff and some of his council staff to Tapton House for the opening ceremony of the replacement Wrought Iron Gates. It was also a celebration of Peter Ashley, a 1940 pupil who had been instrumental in harassing the council for many years to replace the Gates, remove the Ivy from all sides of the house which was causing massive maintenance costs, the costs of the Maze in the park and the installation of the Blue Plaque on the front side of the house in partnership with Marion Yeldham.

Unfortunately Peter had died in July but not before he had seen the new gates in situ. In recognition of Peter's efforts the council have agreed to plant a remembrance tree, a Flowering Cherry sometime this month.

LT to write to the Mayor of Chesterfield and Councillors thanking them for their efforts regarding WI Gates and the remembrance tree for Peter.

LT to write to the principal of Chesterfield College after initial contact by SF

LT also advised that he had managed to organise with the Chesterfield Museum a display of Old Taptonian memorabilia after seeing the display of Chesterfield Grammar School at the museum.

Unfortunately our display did not match up to the grammar school's neither in time nor in quantity.

LT was asked to write to the museum asking for a repeat showing next year but this time being better advertised, longer and including more of the old Tapton House memorabilia from when the house was a museum, before it became a school in 1931.

LT read out a letter from Marion Yeldham, copy attached, of her draft 'grass roots' notice regarding the OTA Reunion meeting on 7/11/14 which she had sent to the Derbyshire Times on 10 November but it hadn't appeared in the 20th or 27th of November editions. She had rung the Assistant Editor each week and she was told they would look into it but as to-date she had heard nothing. LT requested to write to the D Times to backup Marion's request for action.

 

5. Treasurers Report - No receipt yet of promised accounting documents from Barrie Birkin ex Treasurer.

 

 6. New Committee Members - Graham Turner and Marion Yeldham will be co-opted hopefully at our next meeting.

 

 7. Recruitment Report - With our ever decreasing membership due to old age, discuss ideas of inviting past and present pupils and staff at Chesterfield/ Hallamshire College with the possibility of joining us in a new The Taptonians Association.

LT/GT to contact each OTA member for their friends details of their year so we can contact them. Suggest a minimum of £5/year in case anyone wants to pay more than the minimum.

 

 8. Any Other Business

SF provided LT with a copy of the Links CVS - Pre-Funding Appointment Questionnaire which needs completing in order for us to apply for funding for several projects to be discussed in detail prior to the application being made.

The possibility of reducing costs of the AGM/get-together in November 2015 by replacing the Winding Wheel with the Loundsley Green Community Centre. Much cheaper and free car parking.

SF to contact the College Principal with our ideas of new members from Tapton House.

 

 9. Next Meeting - suggest last Saturday 27th June 1915 - day of the picnic. If earlier try organising the meeting via use of Telephone and Email to restrict travelling to a minimum.

 

Signed Len Thompson - Secretary

Stan Frost - Chairman

Yes, it's that time of year again and our reunion meeting has been arranged for 8.00pm on November 1 st in the Ballroom at the Winding Wheel. Please pass on an invitation to any Old Taptonians and their partner.

At last November's meeting, Chairman, Maureen Bates welcomed everyone and encouraged them to make the most of the free buffet and to support the raffle. Treasurer, Barrie Birkin presented the annual accounts and made copies available. I read from a book published in 1932 about the new Tapton House School opened in 1931. In that book it also stated that ‘one charm of Tapton House School is that from the main approach the visitor still sees a dignified private dwelling house of admirable proportions'. All the more reason, therefore, for us to continue in our efforts to restore the main gates to their former glory and make that statement as true today as it was in 1932.

In reply to a letter I wrote to Councillor Terry Gilby in July thanking him for his efforts and asking for a progress report regarding the replacement of the gates, he sent me the following statement from the Council's Facilities Maintenance Manager . The Listed building consent has been applied for and has last week been advertised, as you will be aware it can take up to 3 months for the listing to go through. Once we are in receipt of the consent we can place an order with the contractor, they have a lead in period of 8 weeks from the receipt of the order. As long as there are no conditions placed on the consent that affect what we have done already and gained a quotation for we can proceed on this basis. So there is still a light at the end of a rather long tunnel!

This year's picnic was blessed with good weather and refreshments were enjoyed on the sunken lawn. The house had been opened for us to enjoy. Although not everyone wants to look inside the house, it is very useful to have access to the toilets and the dining room in bad weather and so we will endeavour to arrange to have the house open for an hour or so from 11.00am. again next year. The picnic will be from 12.00 noon on Saturday June 21 st . Please note this is NOT the last Saturday.

The annual subscription from 1.10.13 to 30.09.14 is now due and remains at £5.00.

Please return the combined reservation and membership form plus a cheque for £5.00 to me to assist us in our planning. Cheques should be made payable to the Old Taptonians Association.

The rest of the Committee and I very much look forward to seeing you all in November.

Yours sincerely Mike Stanford, Joint Secretary. 


Previous News

A revised date for your diary for 2012, sorry for the late notice but I wasn't informed until last week.

1. OTA Picnic day at Tapton House Saturday Noon 23 June 2012 instead of 30 June.
(The house was opened for us to view the house and rooms again at 11.30 to 13.00)

24 February 2012
Sad news about Brian Denman, OT1948 and late headmaster at Tapton House, who passed away last Friday. Brian had been in hospital for some weeks and was allowed home after being cleared of kidney problems. However he then suffered an infection which may have caused his death. 
The funeral will be held next Wednesday (29th February) at 2.30pm in St Thomas’ Church (Chatsworth Road) followed by burial in Boythorpe Cemetery.
With condolences

3 November 2006
Message for Old Taptonians for easy access to old photos of our School, teachers and pupils.
At present the only place for the storage of OTA members' school photos is on the OT website www.oldtaptonians.co.uk There is now another option open to us, Flickr, reputed to be the best online photo management and sharing application in the world.
To access the site use the following web address: http://www.flickr.com/photos/ot1949/ (just copy and paste this into Internet Explorer and click on GO).
This will enable you to see the existing 39 photos (from 1930s thru 2006) I have already uploaded. If anyone wants to upload their own OT photos to Flickr or add comments to the existing photos just email me and I will provide you with detailed instructions on how to do it.
When you have had a chance to see the photos on the site I am sure you will agree that this is the right vehicle for us, especially since it will make it so much easier for me to organise and update. 
Len Thompson 
1 Orchard Gardens
Cranleigh
Surrey GU6 7LG
Tel: 01483 274535
Email: len@lenthompson.net


Two dates for your diary for 2008

1. OTA Picnic day at Tapton House Saturday Noon 28 June 2008.
(We hope the house will be opened for us to view the house and rooms again at 11.00 to 13.30) 

THE OLD TAPTONIANS WAR MEMORIAL AND PICNIC
Well done Saturday 24 June 2006. I am proud of all the Old Taptonians who turned out for the event and the picnic; we have never had such numbers attending (over 100 - I will be issuing an attendance list when it is finalised). A special thank you to those who travelled from the USA and Canada to be with us. Photos of the event should also be available on enquiry. 

THE OLD TAPTONIANS WAR MEMORIAL report by Des Baker
An unusual ceremony was held at Tapton House on Saturday 24 June 2006. 
When Tapton House School was closed in 1991, some of its treasures were lost, and some of them were removed for safe keeping. Among these was the School War Memorial, a fine wooden plaque which listed in gold lettering the names of eighteen Old Taptonians who lost their lives in the Second World War. John Wilson, the brother of one of the young men named on the memorial, was the first to enquire about the plaque's whereabouts in the late 1990s, and more recently, with Old Taptonian Len Thompson, he established that it was in the storerooms of Chesterfield Museum, 

Len who has done much research into the history of Tapton House and is the author of a book on the subject, then enlisted the help of the present guardians of the house, Chesterfield College, the archives staff at Chesterfield Museum and a number of his school friends.He arranged for the plaque to be restored by the Museum and at the same time obtained from the Commonwealth War Graves Commission official certificates honouring the OT war heroes. He then tracked down as many as possible of the families of the young men listed on the memorial and invited them to the ceremony. 
He chose the last Saturday in June, the date when Old Taptonians traditionally hold their annual picnic on the sunken lawn at Tapton, to have the memorial officially unveiled. 

So Saturday's event brought together over 100 Old Taptonians and friends from the 1930s to the 1990s, including the families of those young men who lost their lives in the 1940s. 
The Principal of Chesterfield College, Ian Murray, welcomed the visitors back to Tapton and Len himself gave a special welcome to the family members who had been able to come. 
The Service of Remembrance and Dedication was devised in collaboration with the British Legion and conducted by the Rev Dr Stan Frost, himself an Old Taptonian. The Vicar of Holy Trinity, The Rev Chris Jackson also officiated. John Wilson, read a lesson from the Apocrypha. The Mayor of Chesterfield, MrsTrudi Mulcaster, led prayers, the Mayoress, Mrs June Brown, read out the names of the Fallen, and OT Keith Renshaw brought the ceremony to a close. 

When the school was opened in 1931, its Charter was signed by a number of notable people: AV Alexander, First Lord of The Admiralty and a Principal Secretary of State; NJ Watson, Mayor of the Borough of Chesterfield; H Cropper, Chairman of the Education Committee; Violet Markham, Vice Chairman of the Education Committee and HG Stead, Education Officer. They decreed that the Charter should be read out on every anniversary of that date. On this occasion OT Des Baker had the honour of reading it out, this time in the presence of the Member of Parliament for Chesterfield, Paul Holmes. 
Finally, Len Thompson presented The Mayor, The Mayoress and The 
Principal of the College with copies of his two books about Tapton House and its School.
Then the Old Taptonians adjourned to the sunken lawn for their annual picnic! 
Next on Len's list of items to be tracked down are the original framed Charter and the fine wooden lectern which stood on the stage at every school assembly.....

Ps If anyone has any information as to the whereabouts of any of the above items please contact Len Thompson Tel: 01483 274535 or Email:len@lenthompson.net

WW2 plaque being rededicated and unveiled by Mayor Trudi


2. Reunion at The Winding Wheel Friday 7.30pm 7 November 2008.
The 2007 event was well attended as usual (advise Mike Stanford - OTA Secretary 01246 568181, if you plan to attend on 7 November 2008)

Item 1. The following were present at the picnic in 2002, having a lovely time, full of nostalgia:

  • Riggott Joan 1943 1946
  • Eyre Brian 1944 1948
  • Jackson Rita Austin 1944 1948
  • Rhodes Brenda Bilton 1944 1944
  • Buxton Alan 1945 1951
  • Clark Pamela Kemp 1945 1950
  • Maycock Sheilah Baxter 1945 1949
  • Hinchley Janet Heath 1947 1954
  • Leaney Sylvia 1947 1953
  • Beasley Joan Eaton 1948 1953
  • Barnes Pat Rusty 1949 1954
  • Coe April Hall 1950 1955
  • Delaney Pauline Ward 1950 1955
  • Drew Brian 1950 1955
  • Heaton Joyce Moulder 1950 1953
  • Ramsdale Pat Buckley 1950 1955
  • Yeldham Marion 1951 1956
  • Senior Allan 1953 1961
  • Ulyett Sandra 1953 1959
  • Longden Liz 1954 1960
  • Mathews June 1954 1961
  • Parkin Maureen Jones 1954 1961
  • Renney Margaret 1954 1959
  • Stanford Mike 1954 1961
  • Woodhouse Mick 1954 1960
  • Woodlisse Marian Gaffey 1954 1961
  • Birkin Barrie 1956 1962
  • Stokes Jean Birkin 1956 1962
  • Beasley Margaret 1958 1963
  • Hunt Judith 1958 1963
  • Booker Bill 1959 1966
  • Vintiner John 1959 1966
  • Constantino Mary Stone 1961 1968
  • Nash Hilary 1961 1965
  • White Gill Walters 1961 1968
  • Davenport Anne Bannister 1962 1967
  • Fitch Pat Duke 1962 1967<
  • Constantino Angela Taylor 1966 1973
  • Dunford Maureen Bates 1971 1977
  • Bates Keith
  • Newton Gary 1974 1979

Article from Gloria Havenhand nee Wood (1956)

All of us remember the Christmas Carol Service at Trinity Church, Chesterfield, when the stone memorial depicting George Stephenson's Rockets 'chimney' dominated every visitor's eye and warmed the hearts of all. It was living history in 'an ordinary' school, in the Midlands, but distinctly illuminates how Taptonians need 'to touch base with history' - for I will share with so many Old Taptonians, a quiver stashed with memories, so colourful, so lively, so controversial.

Just like Stephenson's Rocket, to be educated at Tapton House School was to be ahead of time or out of step with convention - for its eccentric atmosphere was made even more extraordinary by its eclectic and eccentric staff.

Not for them the carping on of education, education, education! They were not into jam tomorrow or the next day - for TODAY had 6 hours of solid teaching from which you derived 6 hours of solid learning. We surely all remember that first week?

How unfit we were, breathlessly climbing that worn grassy hill every morning, besporting our over-full satchels - why didn't we leave most books at school? Pride and ostentation feel no pain do they? (And that School Charter - declaring and decreeing its noble men and gracious women who had, over 200 years, dwelt in and loved this house. Loved a school, I thought - loved school at all - the word madness buzzed through my head then!)

Tapton gave me my first encounter with batmanesque teachers, bedecked in flowing gowns, strutting their importance along corridors and sweeping the floor as a practical extra. Gowns commanded automatic respect and attention. You could hear a pin drop. Whatever the subject, maths, sciences, languages - infective words such as "example, exceptional, expectations and exceed" took on high meaning - which for me anyway, kicked my idle soul into a new, exciting experience of my life + education per se was the fulfilment of this - not the promise.

Remember the class of 1956? There has to be the other 102 souls out there somewhere. We were a tripartite lot separated into T, H and S forms - that's right - ensconced in Rooms 3, 4 and 5 respectively. No one separated by ability yet!

The first term was a slog towards the dreaded School Report due at the end of the Christmas Term. I well remember handing over this brown envelope to my father. I waited for what seemed an eternity - "Hmm, second in class, you've only made it to second. This is no good, nobody remembers or cares who came second - only who came first!" I wonder how today's social workers would handle my father - for the rest of the class seemed to have provoked the same response from their parents too!

Nasty medicine the truth! A tough regime at school - but an even tougher one at home. Work or wilt!

We were after all, at Tapton, "born to the purple". Our scarves and ties were a vivid purple, black and white. Phil Wildin (that revered Senior Mistress) dreamed of attiring her girls with purple stockings and purple berets (this hated piece of uniform). The girls were aghast of her radical and outrageous ideas - but worse was "to come".

Upon the publication of DH Lawrence's Lady Chatterley's Lover (unexpurgated edition at last) she seized the nettle. She marched along top corridor, waving the novel high aloft - dramatically beckoning over the balustrade for all her English pupils to come now - to her room! (Remember her hidey-hole? Through the book-store (next to the Biol-Annexe) and up two steps into her inner sanctum?)

What sin had we all committed - it had to be gross - it was! She was filled - yeah, consumed with passion - She accused us of gross misconduct. Giggling, whispering, and sniggering about media sensationalism. "Out with it," she demanded, "let's hear it - F***!!"

We were frozen in shock. How could she? We thought better of her (Why I don't know - weren't we narrow minded brats?) She parade up and down - remember, by now, 'extras' in the form of a crocodile had crowded outside the book store and wound down the stone stairs, ears straining for the use of the dreaded word. "You have all this word - now, when I use it or DH Lawrence uses it in prose - you become juvenile and immature!"

"DH Lawrence came from a mining community (Eastwood, Nottinghamshire)" she exclaimed, "he is using language in print as it is used in conversation in his family life or working life - it is even used on The London Stage - I tell you all."

It took several days for this brainstorming act of hers to fully sink in. I still hate the F-word - but ever since that moment, I have been unmoved and unmotivated by it. All of us, despite our street gossiping, never heard of such boldness at Chesterfield School or St Helena School - believe me, we would have known!

You know; the penny only dropped when I set out on my own teaching career, firstly at St Marys High School and then St Helena (Holy of Holy's), that I suddenly identified specifically WHY Tapton has made us all so bold, so confident, so communicative, so cosmopolitan!

Taptonian staff were molten - not compartmentalised or blinkered to one subject or interest only.

How many of you smile (nay - grin) when the name Mr Woodhouse is pulled out of the hat? What a lovable maniac teaching biology in the most extra-orbital way known to the whole galaxy. He also took us camping, mountaineering (I stayed at the bottom with the derelict gossipers), camping, cave exploring - together with all the photographic apparatus and genius he had to offer en route! We lost him to Tasmania - their gain!

Mr Savitz didn't languish in his genius of 10 languages (whoever heard of anyone speaking Latin fluently anyway?). No, lingua Latina held the secrets of Roman philosophy and its licence to renew and muse the soul, sexual and scientific rites that literally ignited our adolescent imagination to new heights. We all, not, just wanted to go to Rome - we now needed to go!

Dorothy Lowe (that two-toned sock wearing Geographer) filling every inch of Room 9. Two-toned? Oh yes - a grey sock on the left foot and a blue one on the right or whatever combination had been pulled from the drawer.

The class of 56 must remember when Dorothy Lowe and Phil Wildin swept into Tapton's drive entrance every morning. Dorothy driving - Phil deeply inhaling her 10th fag since breakfast, whilst drenching herself in Revlon's Intimate perfume in preparation for the war zone to be fought that day.

How many of you were beckoned (nay ordered) into the boot of that Black Consul - "Just in time to give us extra grip, de-earhh's"

Often crunching through 5 to 6 inches of snow up the inclined drive. However 3 or 4 of us got out in 1 piece remains a mystery, but what fun.

Back to Dorothy Lowe. Overshooting her Geography lesson well into morning break, she had again mounted her favourite hobby-horse - the state of the Economy and Economics generally.

"Free handouts from the State - to you lot - and you don't even appreciate it!" She was referring to free school meals in Junior Schools.

"But it is not free!" I protested (just 12 years old). "That milk is free - How dare you argue with me?" She screeched. "It's not," I continued (fearing for my life by now) "it's paid for by our parents and millions of taxpayers."

"But it's free to you," she screamed and raced up to my desk (back row of course), wrenched an exercise book from my hands and skimmed it frizzbeesque out through the back window - and ordered me "like a dog" to retrieve it for my insolence.

"You threw it - I'm not fetching it". "Ye Gods", this incident still increases my heart rate - at that moment it must have been pounding and throbbing in terror.

Punishment came as a matter of course - fully deserved but 10 out of 10 for her, for during that lunch time she dragged me out of room 9 (2000 lines and showered me with apologies for all to hear at the top of the staff stairs? She held court and from this balustraded altar still holding me by the blazer sleeve, she declared to the school that Misses Pennington and Woodhall agreed with me and the rest of the staff were still deep in argument, but at this stage the Male Staff Room had no opinion to speak of, naturally.

She ranted and raved (as she did normally about free speech and how she encouraged it and this could only happen in her 'comprising lessons'. She declared at full puff that this was the stuff of democracy and hence Tapton - but I still must complete the 2000 lines in Room 9 - for this was food for the soul! Now done with glee.

I was later to remember this academic and social scrum with Dorothy Lowe, when in later life, I too seemed to be ranting or ranted at, in Council Chambers, Government Committees, Party Conferences or TV interviews - Face Facts - Face your Aggressor - and Face the Punishment (if it comes). Tapton House bestowed us all with confidence from every conceivable source, good, bad or sad.

Which now precipitates the jewel in the crown when reflecting on Miss Wildin and Lowe.

Fidgeting and whispering by the whole objectionable back row in Phil Wildin's lesson, had its own retribution - NOT LINES!! Please note. She congratulated us on our obvious verbosity and would hear no refusals to her offer (demand?) to The Debating Society (after school of course).

We had been caught straight on our Achilles heel - our verbosity was only for us - we couldn't speak publicly - we would dissolve on the spot!

After our first attendance, we were mockingly calling each other say, "Miss Wood, Miss Raybould - you have the floor etc - etc!" when Phil Wildin appeared seemingly out of a floor board and showered us with her wide-eyed admiration. Our undiscovered talents must not be wasted - The Debating Society - needed this new troop. She promptly arranged our debut as Proposer, Seconder, Opposer and Seconder the week AFTER NEXT! "Ye Gods!" Walls did have ears at Tapton - and unbeknown to Newton - light did turn corners. We had been caught - again.

ur debut was not just dreadful - it unrehearsed and unresearched. It highlighted the pain of public speaking to the unsuspecting. Never Ever did anyone in our tribe take 'The Michael' again - but ever onwards and upwards, we were taken back to Phil Wildin's Room and in modern-speak, it would be spinned as 'Embarrassment Counselling'! At that time (about 1959) it was known as the "Don't Quit Now Scene."

Months and months passed - So much of her personal time she dedicated to us. Our tribe was smaller by now. There are always losses on the route to Jerusalem, but smarter by experience. Why did she continue to waste her time on us? Her regime flew straight from a barrack square - rigid rehearsal time, strict timing schedules, current affairs understanding and at least half an hour per day oral delivery. Don't forget the timing - timing - timing - as No. 1. "You say everything with a silent pause," she reiterated, courtly King!

Eleven months later and she entered those willing, for The Mitchell Debating Prize and the following year - The East Midlands Debating Trophy was carried back to Tapton.

By now, Phil and Dorothy were agreeably confident to be seen in public with us. AS a reward we were transported on Branson's Coaches to The Royal Shakespeare Theatre, Stratford. It was a dark winter's evening.

Half an hour into the performance Dorothy Lowe was in emotional melt down when one member of the cast plunged his hand beneath his bulging cods piece and plucked out a coin from beneath - She shrieked for half the stalls to hear - "Did You See That - Did You All see what HE did - Do Something Phil!"

Phil Wildin did.

Not one jot of notice did she take of Dorothy, but asked her immediate brood if she was with THEM. The natural actors were not on stage that night.

You know, it has been traumatic to be objective about any experience at Tapton. We are all subjective products - unique individuals from its many moments. It is quite normal to spot an Old Taptonian at 500 paces. They change people, the work place, they change the serious to the fun!

Where else could you in the 50s and 60s have seen Science lessons encompassing Whittington Sewage Works and nappy science at dear old Robinson's? To whom dare we divulge the statistics of gambling at the roulette wheel and black jack, as taught in Concise Mathematics? Then, those bedfellows, English, History and drama were never separated and reached their accolade as the Drama of the Year 'Murder in the Cathedral' - being presented in Chesterfield and Darmstadt, Germany to wonderful reviews.

Lastly - do tell me - every one of you! How come that in 1956, we were of a many and mottled background? The children of railwaymen, fitters, shop assistants and dinner ladies being united cheek by jowl with those whose parents were managing directors, headmasters, restauranteurs and publishing executives - yet all, having the same opportunity to achieve their chosen path in life.

Purple is the colour of Kings and Queens - the colour of Nobility - perhaps that is why the school charter honours the NOBLE men and GRACIOUS women who have dwelt in and loved this house.

Would this nowadays, be thrown out with the politically incorrect bathwater?

Frankly, I couldn't give a damn!

N.B. Is there anyone out there from this Year? Please ring or write.



Marion Yeldham (OT 1951) reports that the Chesterfield and District Civic Society
has recently erected a plaque on the house to commemorate its most famous resident:
George Stephenson
Three cheers for Marion.

Old School photos (more to come when I have time)


Tapton House Front


Tapton House Garden


Tapton House from SE


Markham Graves


Tapton House South Door


View from Tapton House


1930s Photo


1935 Prefects Photo


1940s Photo


1941 H Causer Photo


1947 Dancing Princess Photo


1947 Netball Photo


1948 Athletics Web Photo


1948 Bonfire Dancing Photo


1948 South American Dancing Photo


1949 Camping at Flamborough Photo


1950 Pam Allen/Len Thompson Photo


1952 Margaret Gaughan and Donald Frost Photo


1952 St Joan Sylvia Swallow Photo


1953 Football Junior Photo


1953 Football Senior Photo


1958 Hockey Team


1960 Autumn June Reddish Photo


1960 Social June Reddish Photo


1966 Athletics Photo


1966 Gym Photo


1966 Hockey Photo


1966 Prefects Photo