Review of 2014 - a look back at the headlines in our communities

Elias Haydock, three, of Worksop with his mum Charlotte after his life changing operation. Picture: Andrew Roe
Elias Haydock, three, of Worksop with his mum Charlotte after his life changing operation. Picture: Andrew Roe
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Worksop Guardian reporter Liam Norcliffe takes a look back at the stories that made the headlines in our area over the last year.

JANUARY

Children in Blyth were over the moon following the opening of a new £61,500 play park in the village.

The park, in Spital Road, had eight new pieces of equipment installed as well as a picnic table, new grass matting surface and seating.

It was funded by Notts County Council’s Local Improvement Scheme and supported by local councillor Sheila Place.

FEBRUARY

Mary Swales celebrates her 104th birthday with friends at the Ann Daniels Lunch Club

Mary Swales celebrates her 104th birthday with friends at the Ann Daniels Lunch Club

The Worksop Guardian launched its campaign to help save the town’s branch of the Royal British Legion.

Numbers were reportedly dwindling on Newgate Street with more staff needed to provide companionship to servicemen and their families.

“The Legion is needed now as much as it was in 1921, when it was formed, with people coming back from Afghanistan and other wars,” said branch secretary Elaine Hopkins.

MARCH

Pictured is The Rev Kate Bottley who is appearing on the Ch4 TV progg Googlebox outside St Marys & StMartins Church in Blyth

Pictured is The Rev Kate Bottley who is appearing on the Ch4 TV progg Googlebox outside St Marys & StMartins Church in Blyth

Two employees at the Turbine Centre bit off more than they could chew with a charity challenge.

Andrew Trevelyan and Craig Gamblen took part in a Man v Food style contest at the business centre in Shireoaks, to raise money for the Sheffield Children’s Hospital charity.

Their aim was to devour a 30 inch sandwich stuffed full of meat and salad - all in under 30 minutes.

The idea, based on the popular television programme, came about when the Wilduck Kitchen, began a special deli week.

APRIL

A vicar from Blyth took the television world by storm just months after becoming an internet sensation.

The Rev Kate Bottley (left) appeared on Channer Four programme Gogglebox.

The previous summer she conducted a wedding ceremony in which she and the couple started a flash mob dance.

“I think doing this show shows vicars are just like anyone else,” she said.

MAY

A group of dinner ladies scooped over £100,000 on the National Lottery.

The nine-strong syndicate, who are all from Retford and Tuxford, won £104,153.70 after matching five numbers and a lucky star in the EuroMillions draw on Friday, 11th April.

“The lady on the till checked our Thunderball ticket and we had won £3 on that,” said syndicate leader Irene Grant.

“Then she checked our EuroMillions and the machine started flashing and playing a tune.”

JUNE

A holidaymaker from Worksop who collapsed after a heart attack in a Bournemouth hotel said his thanks to the manager who brought him back to life.

Lew Bell, 84, was staying at the Days Hotel Marsham Court in the seaside town when he suffered a massive heart attack in his room.

His wife Margaret raised the alarm and hotel manager Rosie Wallace rushed up two flights of stairs to get to her guest.

Using CPR and resuscitation techniques, Rosie worked on Lew for eight minutes until paramedics arrived and took over.

JULY

The Canch in Worksop was celebrating its status as one of the very best parks in the UK, after picking up its first ever Green Flag Award.

The accolade, handed out by environmental charity Keep Britain Tidy, recognises and rewards the best parks and green spaces across the country.

A Green Flag flying overhead is a sign to the public that the space boasts the highest possible standards.

Coun Julie Leigh, cabinet member for neighbourhoods at Bassetlaw District Council, said: “The Canch is the green heart of Worksop and we are absolutely delighted.”

AUGUST

Hundreds of people paid their respects at The Royal British Legion’s ‘Lights Out’ event in Worksop to mark 100 years since the start of World War One.

The candle-lit vigil was held in the Old Market Square at 10pm on Monday 4th August - as men, woman and children were encouraged to leave just one single candle or light burning until 11pm - the exact time war was declared.

Ceremonies all over the country were held to remember the fallen soldiers as homes, businesses and public buildings showed their respects by turning off their lights.

SEPTEMBER

A Shireoaks poet started to raise funds to honour infamous ‘Worksop tramps’ Ned and Flo with a new headstone.

The town’s very own Romeo and Juliet lived out their lives on the open road some 50 years ago.

The Shireoaks History Society’s Pete Brammer and Bernie Ayton discovered that the couple were buried in an unmarked grave in Retford Road Cemetery, Manton.

OCTOBER

A drop of whiskey in her morning brew - that is the secret of 104-year-old Mary Swales - who celebrated her birthday on Tuesday 7th October.

The oldest woman registered in Worksop, Mary celebrated her birthday at The Ann Daniels Centre, on Dadley Road, Carlton-in-Lindrick.

She has 27 great-grandchildren, 13 grandchildren and two great-great-grandsons and has attended the Lunch Club at the centre for the past 20 years.

Mary (below) told the Guardian: “My success to a long healthy life is down to a good days work, a good meal and a spoonful of whiskey in my first cup of tea in the morning.”

NOVEMBER

An inspirational little boy with cerebral palsy took his first unaided steps thanks to pioneering surgery made possible by fundraising efforts from the Worksop community.

Little Elias Haydock, three, of Worksop, walked 15 steps just 16 weeks after undergoing the life changing operation in May.

Elias’ mum, Charlotte Haydock, gave her thanks to those involved in fundraising for the operation and spoken of the emotional moment she witnessed her son walk unaided for the first time.

DECEMBER

A Worksop couple created history after becoming one of the first in the country to convert their civil partnership into marriage.

Jim and Robin Walker tied the knot on Wednesday 10th December in the town after exchanging their vows.

Previously, only same sex couples who were not in a civil partnership were able to take advantage of gay marriage legislation, which came into effect from 29th March.

But as of 10th December, same sex couples are now free to convert their union into marriage.

“It has been a long time coming,” James said.

“We are happy that after 27 years we are legally recognised as a couple.”