July-December 2012


NURSE Karen Townend, 50, of Sandal, carried the Olympic flame on its final leg through Wakefield and past the Hepworth. She was nominated by patients she has helped through cancer treatment after her own battle with the disease. The Association’s August 2012 cheese and wine evening was an Olympic celebration with Karen, a former head girl at Kettlethorpe High School, bringing the torch to the West Yorkshire Sports and Social Club. Since she ran with the torch she has been into 15 Wakefield schools, promoting sporting activity, as well as talking to local groups about what she described as ‘the experience of her life’. She estimates that in all about 3,000 Wakefield people have handled the torch, plus those who picked it up at the cheese and wine evening, some of whom are pictured here by an SCA photographer.. For more information and video clips Click Here      Main photo courtesy the Wakefield Express 

Chevet Lane residents accuse council

RE£SIDENTS angry about traffic on Chevet Lane say they hope someone is not killed as a result of ‘a council department’s procrastination’.In a strongly worded letter to members of Wakefield planning and highways committee, the residents claim the council is not fulfilling its promises. replica louis vuitton handbagsThey say that recent correspondence has been ‘intensely negative, indifferent and unhelpful’.In the letter, signed by Gill Whittingham, Louise Walker and Malcolm Burgess, householders demand action on five main points:

So far the only positive outcome of previous meetings that they can identify is the renewal and extension of white lines at the lower end of Chevet Lane.To see the letter in full, click here


Police carried out speed checks with mobile cameras  and double white lines have now been painted on the most congested section of the road.  Image courtesy of the Wakefield Express


Solutions sought for ‘vexing issue’ of flooding

MOVES are afoot to prevent repetition of this year’s flooding of homes on a Sandal housing estate. As in 2007, excessive rainfall meant that surface and ground water from higher ground, including fields at Gallows Hill, had run through the Woodthorpe area and the golf course, gathering more water as it went. This led to flooding on Pledwick Lane and the Woolgreaves estate. In August Councillors Nadeem Ahmed and David Hopkins held what they reported was a ‘very productive’ meeting with members of the management committee of Wakefield Golf Club and Wakefield council’s land drainage officer to discuss the issue. The councillors contacted the planning department to check that there had been no breaches of planning conditions or obligations, while the land drainage officer looked into the levels of responsibility of different land owners. He was also drawing up options to address the issue. A statement from the councillors said: “The golf club is keen to work with the council in order to play its part in resolving this vexing issue as soon as possible.” 

Sandal Library

SANDAL Library has escaped a cull in which Wakefield Council plans to save £800,000 a year. Other communities are not so lucky and eleven libraries will close unless volunteers with viable business plans step forward to staff them. Those under threat include neighbouring Walton. It is not yet known if Sandal’s much-loved library will be relocated. Library use in Wakefield has dropped by 43 per cent in the past 20 years. A report to Wakefield Council’s cabinet in July said just 14.5 per cent of the district’s population use the service regularly. Volunteer groups have until October 31 to take on the running of the libraries facing closure. They would get a share of the £100,000 set-up fund but would have to provide their own books and services. The proposals follow a three-year review in which residents and library users were  asked what they wanted. 

Sandal Magna dictionary presentation

WAKEFIELD Rotary club president Peter Rhodes, a former Sandal resident, recalled his days reading Biggles books when he presented dictionaries to Year 6 students at Sandal Magna Community Primary School at the end of the summer term. He also showed the school assembly his own dictionary which, although old and tattered, was vital to him, he said. He is pictured at the back of this group Year 6 students, who were leaving to move up to secondary school. In the centre are Roland Mold (left) and Mike Webster, both Sandal Community Association members, who are volunteers involved in a continuing reading project at the multi-cultural school. This year (2012) the Rotary club presented 320 dictionaries to leavers at ten schools throughout the city.

Two earn special teaching awards

Nichola Russell, headteacher at Sandal Endowed Junior and Castle Grove Infant Schools, and Andrew Carter, a teaching assistant at Sandal Endowed, have both been praised for work in their respective fields. Nichola has been appointed one of only 70 National Leaders of Education who use their experience to provide leadership to struggling schools while their own becomes a National Support School. She became head at Castle Grove in 2007 and was appointed to the same role at Sandal Endowed two years later. Andrew gained the Peter Sutherland Award for Outstanding Higher Level Teaching Assistant.  He was nominated by colleagues for his excellence in advancing the learning of pupils and for bringing expertise to the staff team. He received his award from Margaret Christian, director of Carnegie Leaders in Learning. 

Swift response to arrival of travellers

THERE was a flurry of calls to both police and council when a small group of travellers with two caravans moved into the green space at the end of Sinclair Garth. The families were quickly visited by council officers and advised that they were there illegally. A letter from local councillors dated August 3 was distributed to residents. It said: “The families declined a request to move to a legal site. Steps were immediately put in hand to go to court for an eviction order which was delivered to the families on Wednesday (August 1), for a court hearing on Tuesday August 7. “Assuming the court grants the order, the families will need to be gone by Thursday, August 9.” In fact, they left the site on Sunday, August 5, leaving behind bags of rubbish for the council to clear away the following day, when temporary barriers were put in place. Immediately following the travellers’ departure, Community Association member Gill Whittingham said: “At least the children can now go back to playing on the grassy area. It’s great news that the land is to be protected – fencing, bollards, anything is welcome to avoid a recurrence of this unhappy episode. It has really unsettled many people.” In their letter to residents, Councillors Monica Graham, Nadeem Ahmed and David Hopkins said: “We will be having urgent discussions to ensure that a long term solution is found to secure the areas while still allowing legitimate access for grass cutting. “This will unfortunately mean that the open nature of the Sinclair Garth and Stillwell Drive pieces of land will be reduced.” Association chair Gail Stephenson said: “I would like to say thanks to the councillors and officers for their prompt action, and we will keep an eye on the progress on securing vulnerable sites. Thanks to Gill Whittingham and Louise Walker for raising awareness, too.” The councillors sent out another letter on August 8, explaining what further action was being taken to protect the grassed areas.

THE hanging baskets provided by the Association on Barnsley Road have made a good display despite the problems caused by the weather. Our thanks to our sponsors for their help with this popular project. 

Chilly Christmas tree switch-on

As always, November’s chilly switch-on of the Christmas tree lights and the social that followed in Sandal Endowed School hall were very popular with youngsters and their families. A choir from the school sang Christmas songs and carols, while Sandal Community Association, who organised the event, provided free orange squash and sold hot drinks and mince pies in aid of funds. There was a flying visit by Santa who arrived with a sack of sweets for the children. The lights were ‘switched on’ by Jack Endersby and David Coggin, pupils from Sandal Endowed School.

Audience participation in carol concert

‘A HUGEe success’ - that was the verdict on the evening of carols, wine and mince pies organised by the Association at West Yorkshire Sports and Social Club on December 7. Sandal Methodist Church choir sang a selection of carols and Christmas songs, with some enthusiastic participation by the audience, especially when it came to ‘A Partridge in a Pear Tree’. Compere was Association secretary Les Goddard who provided some additional festive fun with a Christmas quiz.

'Privilege' after handing cash to air ambulance

MADGE FLINT (left in our picture), secretary of Sandal Community Association, said how ‘privileged’ she felt after visiting Yorkshire Air Ambulance to hand over a cheque for £1,050 to fundraising officer Kerry Garner. The money came from a handbag auction organised by the Association at the West Yorkshire Sports and Social Club in October. After her visit Madge, who was one of the people behind the auction, said: “It was wonderful to be allowed to sit in the cockpit of one helicopter and watch the other take off. When I saw the rotas, I was very impressed by the number of doctors, paramedics and fundraisers who are involved. They deserve all the support we can give them.” The air ambulances operate from Leeds-Bradford Airport, where the presentation took place in January.

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