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2017 diary of upper eden rotary club

The Year of President Richard Todd (2017-18)
Diary July 2017 - July 2018

January 16th 2018. Mr Dumpy Update

Mr Dumpy is coming along. UERC member Roger Frank is busy restoring an old tipper truck for use in the Purple4Polio Grand Tour, a 4 Day Round Britain Road Trip to Support End Polio Now. An ongoing record of the project can be found here.

The pictures show the cab of Mr Dumpy being refurbished both inside and outside.

upper eden rotary club co-op raffle 2017

January 9th 2018. Tree Planting

UERC secretary Litini Newcombe has made some land available for planting trees in support of the Rotary Tree Challenge. We have purchased our trees but they are very small so we have put them in pots for planting outside in the spring. The Rotary Tree Challenge is a project proposed by Ian Riseley, RI President 2017-18. Rotary Clubs are asked to plant a tree for every member. It aims to help the environment in support of Earth Day on 22nd April 2018.

Ian Risley, RI President 2017-18 announces his presidential theme. Rotary: Making a Difference 

We purchased our trees (below) from the Woodland Trust who provide trees for targeting tree disease. We chose a hardy variety we hope will survive on our side of Ash Fell in Cumbria!

Silver Birch, Rowan, Oak mix (Recommended for Scotland)

December 5th 2017. Debbie North: Access to the Dales

David Whitehead introduced the speaker; Debbie North. Back in 2008, Debbie was working as a head teacher at a primary school in Lincolnshire when she started suffering with back pain that became increasingly worse. Following a bout of severe pneumonia, spinal degeneration left Debbie disabled and reliant on a wheelchair, however, she still had a yearn to explore the dales. She started a blog “Access to the Dales” Debbie and her husband Andy have worked a “specialist mobility scooter” company who designed and adapted units for them. They have completed the “Coast to Coast” and various other walks, feeding back to the manufacturer the required design requirements plus feeding back ways of making the paths more acceptable to people with mobility issues. They have also worked together with Julia Bradbury and the National Trust to publicise the “Access to the Dales”. A very interesting talk and the vote of thanks was given by Ben Lyon. More information is at

December 1st 2017. Co-op Raffle Draw

Every year, the Upper Eden Rotary Club sell raffle tickets at the Co-op Supermarket in Kirkby Stephen, with the proceeds from the raffle funding gifts for the over Eighties in and around the area. This year, over 200 gifts were again distributed. The raffle was drawn at the recent Kirkby Stephen Christmas Lights ceremony on the 1st December and the raffle winners were presented with their prizes at the Co-op in Kirkby Stephen by Upper Eden Rotary Club President Richard Todd. He is shown presenting the vouchers to winners Paul Thornborrow and Anne Scott, Pictured also, is Andrea Wilson from the Co-op. Missing from the picture are Judith Ewbank and Dianne Boustead who also won prizes. The Rotary Club of Upper Eden wish to thank the Kirkby Stephen Co-op store manager Michelle Gill plus all the staff for their help and support, plus, thank you to everyone who supported the raffle by purchasing raffle tickets.

Photograph from the left: Richard Todd (Club President), Paul Thornborrow, Anne Scott, Rotarian David Scott and Andrea Wilson from the Co-op.

upper eden rotary club co-op raffle 2017

November 21st. Life and Times of a WW2 RAF Test Pilot: Andy Miller

President Richard Todd introduced our speaker Andy Miller. Andy cam along to talk about his father; Captain Fred “Dusty” Miller. Dusty was a WW2 RAF test pilot. He left school at 17 and after training, became a “detail draughtsman”. He joined the RAF and rose through the ranks to become a qualified flying instructor and then was promoted to a Flight Lieutenant. He served in various locations around the UK, eventually in 1942, he was posted to Boscombe Down in Wiltshire where he flight tested over 70 aircraft types. Some of these aircraft had previously crashed, so he volunteered to fly them to investigate the problem, results from these required modifications to the aircraft. Over the course of his career he flew over 200 types of aircraft. In those days, the average life of a test pilot was six months, fortunately, Dusty lived till the age of 92 years. An extremely interesting illustrated talk of a “Life Lived at Full Throttle”. The vote of thanks was given by President Richard.

November 7th. Quiz Night

Approximately 55 members and partners from Upper Eden, Appleby and Wensleydale, plus other guests enjoyed a supper of home made soup followed by cheese and biscuits before settling down to the main event of the evening – “The Quiz”. With subjects ranging from knowledge of countries, counties of the UK to surgical instruments, plus various artists of all types, it was a thoroughly mind boggling evening with much head scratching and digging into the grey matter. The evening concluded with the raffle and the presentation of prizes to the winners of the quiz. An excellent evening with people going home thinking “why didn’t I know that!”

October 24th 2017. The Bismark: David Vigars

Our speaker tonight was David Vigars, introduced by Michael Metcalfe-Gibson. David has spoken to us on various occasions, bringing his wealth of knowledge on historical subjects. His talk tonight was about the German battleship “Bismark” which was commissioned in August 1940 and together with the heavy cruised “Prinz Bergen”, they were to break into the Atlantic to raid British convoys. Detected by the Royal Navy, the Bismark was attacked by the HMS Prince of Wales, Bismark suffered sufficient damage to stop it’s raiding mission. Further attacks by British torpedo bombers crippled the steering gear and the Captain decided to scuttle the Bismark which resulted in a heavy loss of life. A very interesting talk on the one of the most renown German battleships. Rotarian Graham Curtis gave the vote of thanks.

October 2017. Co-op Raffle Sales

October again and time for club members to spend time at the local Co-op store selling raffle tickets to raise funds for the purchase of Christmas presents for the over “eighties” in and around Kirkby Stephen in the Upper Eden Valley. Thanks to the generosity of local people and visitors, the club last year, distributed over 200 presents. Picture below shows Rotarians David Scott and Tony Taylor ready and willing to sell tickets.

upper eden rotary club co-op raffle 2017

September 29th 2017. Charter Night

This year was the 38th Charter Night Anniversary dinner and was held at the Upper Eden Rugby Club in the presence of DG Larry Branyan and his partner, plus past DG Malcolm Baldwin, guests from other Rotary clubs and members of Upper Eden club. The guest speaker was Kenneth Swan who gave a very interesting presentation on the helicopter crash in Glasgow. The cause of the crash, the investigation and the rescue and how the rescue teams worked together. An additional topic for the evening, was the presentation by DG Larry to Roger Frank, of the Paul Harris Fellow Sapphire award. Past DG Malcolm Baldwin summarised Roger’s achievements before DG Larry made the presentation.

rotary club charter night rotary club charter night

September 26th 2017. Ben Lyon

Club member Ben gave a talk on his experiences of caving in Borneo. In 1976, he had always wanted to go caving in this area and he managed to travel with a group of people from the Royal Geographical Society. They flew to Brunei and then had to drive in Toyota pickup trucks to Sarawak. One of the caves had bats and swifts and the team also surveyed 50km of caves. Ben was also taken ill for five days and they had to arrange for a doctor to fly in, fortunately, he fully recovered. An interesting talk of his true life experiences.

September 15th 2017. Celebrity Chef Evening

The club hosted a “Celebrity Chef Evening” with John Crouch at the Upper Eden Rugby Club. Approximately ninety people attended the evening which included cooking demonstrations by John and guests enjoying a three course Indian cuisine meal.

rotary celebrity chef evening rotary celebrity chef evening

September 12th 2017. YOMP Presentation Evening

The annual presentation evening, gives the club the chance to thank all the partners, friends and supporters who help make Yomp Day the success it is. A cheque for £2000 was presented by Yomp Committee Chairman, Lawrence Cowin, to representatives from “Blood Bikes Cumbria” this was the main nominated charity for 2017. Rotary District Governor for 2016/17 Malcolm Baldwin, also thanked everyone, as Blood Bikes was his nominated charity for the year, so far, his year, has raised about £37,000 for the charity. Cheques were also presented to Kirkby Stephen Mountain Rescue Team and to Kirkby Stephen Scouts. Due to devastating events happening around the world with hurricanes, earthquakes and flooding, the club also decided to send funds to purchase two “Shelterboxes”. Upper Eden Rotary expressed thanks To Builders Merchants, JT Atkinson and Sons and their Kirkby Stephen Manager Alan Barr, for their ongoing sponsorship of the Yomp.

rotary yomp presentation rotary yomp presentation rotary yomp presentation

August 22nd 2017. Visit of District Governor Larry Branyan

DG Larry visited the club and told the club that there are two primary goals, membership and the eradication of polio. Regarding membership, he encouraged club members to get more members and look at setting up satellite clubs. We need to approach people and invite people to meetings. For Polio, the statistics show there were 17 new cases in 2016 and so far this year there have been 9 new cases. October is world polio month. Lastly, he encouraged all Rotarians to plant a tree. Larry’s nominated charity for his year is RNLI.

August 17th 2917. Brough Agricultural Show

Upper Eden Rotary Club members attended Brough Agricultural Show, on display they had the Iron Lung caravan and also information on Rotary. Another warm sunny day certainly brought in the visitors to see all the exhibits. The picture below shows Rotarians Roger Frank, John Houston and David Scott on the Rotary stand.

rotary iron lung at brough show

August 15th 2017. Visit to Sunbeams Music Trust, Penrith

This week’s visit was to the Sunbeams Music Trust in Penrith. The Trust was founded in 1992 by Annie Mawson, a Cumbrian born harpist and singer. The aim is to improve the health and well being of people with special needs. Annie explained that the services are available to children and adults of all ages who have special needs such as physical disabilities, Alzheimer’s disease, cerebral palsy and many other problems. The tour of the premises was followed by a meal with President Richard Todd giving the vote of thanks.

August 1st 2017. Visit to Paul Jackson’s Aviaries

The club last visited Paul’s aviaries back in 2011, at that time he was just starting to build new aviaries to accommodate his increasing numbers. Now everything is complete and Paul gave a tour of the aviaries and explained about his birds, where they come from, the breeding process plus the value of the birds. Many of the birds are bred in nest boxes Paul has built himself. With approximately 350 birds, the value of the birds depends on the colour of the plumage and whether they can to breed. A very interesting visit.

July 20th 2017. Vision Aid Overseas

30 pairs of spectacles delivered to Vision Aid Overseas.

July 4th 2017. Clay Pigeon Shoot and BBQ

This year, the annual event had a new venue and new organisers. Ivor Allonby and Lawrence Cowin organised this year’s “Shoot & BBQ” at Soulby, in one of Lawrence’s fields. It was a bit of a damp evening, however, the turnout of people entering, made up for it. The evening concluded with a BBQ held at Soulby Parish Hall. Thanks go to Lawrence and Ivor for arranging another great evening.

June 30th 2017. Change Over Night, Tufton Arms, Appleby

Change overnight this year took place at the Tufton Arms Hotel in Appleby-in-Westmorland. Members and partners enjoyed an excellent meal followed by the handing over of the Presidential Jewels from out-going President Ian Udale to incoming President Richard Todd. President elect is David Whitehead and second vice President is Tony Taylor. Richard presented a bouquet of flowers to Ian’s wife Anita.

upper eden rotary club change over 2017 upper eden rotary club change over 2017 upper eden rotary club change over 2017 upper eden rotary club change over 2017