How quickly the autumn season of activities seemed to pass. We hope you
enjoyed the varied talks – a particular thanks to John Hoare
for standing in for the November speaker. Thanks too to all
who volunteered to help with our stand at the Local History
Fair, a useful opportunity to promote our work and sell our
publications. Our social event was a great success thanks to
the catering at the Millstone and the entertainment arranged
by Pam Mills.
The AGM of distant memory was an opportunity to thank Committee members
for all their work and to welcome Graham Rolf in his new
role as Treasurer. Proposed changes to the constitution were
agreed unanimously. Steve Payne accepted a second stint as
Chairman and continues to lead the HLF project. His update
about the project is included below.
Our local Library building celebrated its Centenary on 7 October and some
members were able to attend and see the various exhibitions.
Lesley Nicholson had unearthed a fascinating collection of
material on how the main room of the Library was used for
much of the past hundred years before it became the Library
we know now. The Library continues to have changing displays
selected from our Archive. Two retirements also took place
in the autumn, with farewells being made to Carole Hughes,
our local Librarian, and to Carol Hill, the Doncaster Local
Studies Librarian. However,
Doncaster’s loss is our gain now that Carol Hill is helping us with the HLF
project – see Steve’s report.
Several of us beavered away during the autumn to complete our latest
publication, Occasional Paper 6, in which Ronald Hill’s
engrossing memories of his Tickhill schooldays in the 1920s
are accompanied by extracts from a variety of sources and a
selection of illustrations. Priced at £1.50 the paper is
published in January and can be bought at our meetings or
KSM on Castlegate, thanks to Linda Mayes and colleagues.
St Mary’s Church is proposing to install a memorial to Tom Beastall, not
only a Churchwarden, but also an eminent local historian
whose publications on Tickhill and whose leadership of a
local history group have done much to help our understanding
of Tickhill’s past. The Society has made a donation towards
the cost of the memorial.
Now, and for the Future – Progress Report December 2008
We have applied to the
Heritage Lottery Fund for the second instalment of our £20,100
grant. We told them of the progress we had made so far – and
it’s a story to be proud of.
We have been very active in
sharing our materials and involving groups and the community
in appreciating local history. We have given lots of talks,
run local history days, we have a rolling exhibition in
Tickhill Library and we have the website which some 600 people
visit each week, with regular downloads of articles. Our
photographs have been viewed an incredible 84,000 times ... so
far ! Our regular research papers are selling well and our
Newsletter always has interesting research pieces in it.
People are contributing their
memories of times past through Living Memories interviews, and
recently we were honoured with the gift of boxes of papers
left by Joan Wilcox - a treasure trove.
The Society has contributed
volunteer hours to the value of £16,000, our part of the
arrangement with HLF – they give us money, we give our time.
Lots of people have been very busy!
We are working with the local schools to produce a guide to short walks
around Tickhill which we hope will bring the town’s heritage
to life for them.
Carol Hill is
in the process of providing captions for the photos in our
collection and, where these cover a common theme, producing
short papers to help us to understand what the photographs are
telling us about our past – bringing the photographs to life.
Two papers have recently been added to the website on Railways
and the Library.
The next instalment of HLF
funding, which has just been received, will help us carry on
the good work.
latest, rare, historical document to become available on the
Internet is one of the world’s oldest existing Bibles, known
as Codex Sinaiticus. A new website www.codexsinaiticus.org
contains about one quarter of the fourth century Codex, while
the whole Codex will be uploaded by the end of 2009. Written
in Greek (the online version comes with a translation), the
Codex was found in the 19th Century in St
Catherine’s Monastery in Egypt. Many of the 400 pages went to
St Petersburg with 40 or so pages going to Leipzig University.
Some more pages were found in the Monastery in the 1970s in a
walled-up room. The pages held in Russia were sold by Stalin
to the British Museum in 1934. This was the first time the
British Museum raised money through public subscriptions to
add to its collections. The British Library now houses this
substantial section of the Codex.
The Codex has no illuminated letters like the
Lindisfarne Gospels or the Tickhill Psalter. The text is
arranged in four columns on each page. Each letter is
carefully and confidently formed, as can be seen in the word
ONEIDIZ…, meaning ‘reproach’. Thanks are due to Mr Kenneth
Emberton for providing this translation and explaining the
problems involved in translating the Codex. The formation of
individual letters in ancient Greek could vary from one region
to another, the scribes did not put spaces between each word
causing ambiguities and abbreviations could be used, which
only a specialist could decipher.
You might well wonder what the Codex
has to do with Tickhill’s history. The link is explained in
the following extract from the April 1934 edition of The
obtained from the Director of the British Museum a facsimile
of one or two chapters of the Mount Sinai manuscript of the
Bible. The leaves of the original are composed of very fine
vellum, varying in thickness but usually thin and each
measuring 15 by 13½ inches, made up for the most part in
gatherings of eight leaves or sixteen pages. The facsimile is
on a table at the West end of the Church, and will remain
there for the first fortnight of this month. Any donations
given will be forwarded to the British Museum, and will help
in a small way to pay for the purchase of this valuable
So, local people had the opportunity to
see part of the Codex and to help, through donations, to bring
a large part of the Codex to England. By the way, this was not
the first time that money donated in Tickhill found its way to
Russia. In 1922 £16/16/8 was collected locally for the Russian
information about the work of the British Library you could
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