THE Stratford Mop of 1914 appeared little changed from previous years. Wartime austerity had not yet set in and few people foresaw that the conflict would be lengthy. One of the great traditions of the fair was its roasts. No less than five oxen and seven pigs were rotating on the spits outside the pubs on the big day. The excursion trains brought their usual hundreds of revellers from Birmingham and other centres of population. None of Stratford’s conscripts had yet embarked overseas, although just five days before, a regular with the South Wales Borderers, Sgt RH Savage, had been the first Stratfordian to fall victim to the war. He had been struck by shrapnel at the Battle of the Aisne and died of his wounds in Bournbrook Military Hospital.
Four years ago Ellis Holtom, of Stratford-upon-Avon, was born with half a working heart. Later, the Herald featured his condition as a tribute to the work of Birmingham Children’s Hospital where he was treated. Now, to mark Congenital Heart Defect Week his mum, Vicki, updates his story. . .
ALL 326 local planning authorities in England, councils like Stratford-on-Avon District, need a local plan. The core strategy is a component of that local plan. It contains all the local district wide policies that need to be considered when processing planning applications. New development needs to satisfy local needs, helping to realise the hopes and ambitions of its communities and protect them from situations they fear. New homes and places to work should provide then with a healthy lifestyle, a pleasant place to live, good recreational facilities and above all the infrastructure that enhances their quality of life. The buzzword to describe this is ‘sustainable’.
THE poor are paying more than they should be for their energy, according to damning new evidence from Stratford-upon-Avon’s Citizens Advice Bureau. Prepayment meters (PPMs) are costing users in fuel poverty a “disproportionate amount” for what little gas and electricity they can afford, the bureau has found. There are around 7.2 million people on prepayment meters in the UK and several thousand in the district of Stratford. Despite Stratford’s reputation as an affluent area, the bureau is being forced to come to the aid of more and more people living in fuel poverty on an increasingly regular basis.
THE Shakespeare Birthplace Trust is “very pleased” with the positive public response to its £5.25 million plans to reinvigorate New Place in Stratford-upon-Avon, the site of William Shakespeare’s last home before his death in 1616.
The trust organised informal drop-in sessions for anyone interested in the future of the site at Stratford ArtsHouse on Tuesday and Wednesday.
A further session is being held at the same venue from 11am to 2pm next Saturday.
A trust spokeswoman told the Herald: “Two-thirds of those who attended filled out feedback forms with positive suggestions which we will take on board as we develop the scheme.
“They particularly liked the subtlety of the site and the decision to maintain the treasured view of the Guild Chapel.
“People were also very pleased that the garden tradition of the site is being improved.”
Last year the trust announced plans to reinvigorate New Place and tell the “missing story” of Shakespeare’s mature years there as a writer and as a citizen of Stratford.
In January this year, it secured initial support from the Heritage Lottery Fund to progress its plans.
Julie Crawshaw, project manager at the trust, said: “We have consulted extensively with hundreds of individuals and many organisations over the past 12 months.
“In response to feedback on our initial concepts, we have worked up a fresh approach.
“There is still a lot to do but we want to update on our progress as we continue to refine our plans to secure the long-term survival of this unique site at the heart of the story of Shakespeare and Stratford.”
Key elements of the project include:
Residents of the Stratford district will continue to have free access to the gardens.
Dr Diana Owen, the director of the trust, said: “Our Shakespearean heritage is a cornerstone of the tourism sector which employs one in eight people and pumps £335 million into the local economy in Stratford district alone.
“The next chapter at New Place can only strengthen that economy and all the jobs that rely on it in future.”