Having recently been recognised by OFSTED as an ‘Outstanding’ school in all respects it is perhaps no surprise that following the recent release of GCSE results Sedgefield Community College has retained is position as County Durham’s highest attaining secondary school.
This year, new ‘tougher’ English and Maths examinations presented considerable challenges for both students and staff across the country but it would appear that the school took this in their stride as the students once again achieved a raft of impressive results. Headteacher Dave Davies commented, ‘I would like to congratulate our former year 11 students and their parents on what is another outstanding set of results. I am absolutely delighted for both students and staff who have worked so hard to achieve results which have once again seen Sedgefield Community College continue the trend of students achieving beyond ‘national expectations’. The determination of staff and students to achieve the highest possible grades has certainly paid off, and I cannot commend our students highly enough. Their attitude to learning has been outstanding and has also acted as a positive influence on our younger students.
Chair of Governors, John Robinson added, ‘on behalf of the staff, governors and myself, I would like to add my congratulations to our former students and hope that they feel that their experiences at the college has prepared them well for their life after Sedgefield Community College. I must also take the opportunity to thank Mr Davies and his staff for ensuring that the children in our area receive such a high quality education’.
Autumn will be well underway when you read this and since we had quite a damp August it is very likely that it will be a good year for fungi and berries. The Woodland Trust are asking people to share pictures of signs of autumn using the #NatureDetectives, whether it is leaves changing colour, autumnal scenes or fungi. They are also asking people to record changes using the Nature's Calendar website. We all know that many leaves change colour as autumn approaches but why?
In summer, leaves produce lots of green-coloured chlorophyll, which helps them make sugary food from sunshine. Chlorophyll production slows down as winter approaches so you start to see the other coloured chemicals in the leaves, such as yellow carotenes. But if there’s still some food in a leaf, that turns into anthocyanins, which are red. This results in leaves changing colour. The colour mix depends on the weather. If it’s cool and grey in August and September, the food in a leaf runs out quickly and you get more yellow leaves. If it’s warm and sunny, leaves produce food for longer and you get more red leaves. (See the Woodland Trust website for more information).
The Woodland Trust have been monitoring seasonal changes through the Nature’s Calendar website for many years. They are asking people to choose a rowan tree to observe this autumn. Visit the tree at least once or twice a week to check the colour of the leaves. You might find this easier if you choose a tree that you already see regularly, for example a tree on your way to work or the shops. Record the date of first autumn tinting - when several leaves on the tree have started to change colour. Record the date of full autumn tinting when all the leaves on the tree have changed colour. It may not be possible to record full autumn tinting if the leaves fall before they have fully changed colour. The information collected from people all over the country is analysed by scientists and contributes to questions linked to weather and wildlife, and climate change. From leaf buds bursting to blackberries ripening, log on to https://naturescalendar.woodlandtrust.org.uk/ and tell them what’s happening near you. You'll be contributing to a long biological record that dates back as far as 1736.
Sedgefield struck gold once again in the recent Northumbria in Bloom awards, winning gold and Best Small Town. Judges Robert Germany and Anthea Stephenson were full of praise for our ‘picturesque town with so much to see, maintained to a high standard, a delight to visit.’
They were very impressed by the traditional flower beds created by council gardeners Stephen Young and Ben Gray. The tubs and planters also received high praise, as well as the 700 Bed, designed and planted by volunteer Bloomer Alice Hobson and the stunning wildflower meadow at Wykes Close.
Gardens created by the Bloomers at Ceddesfeld Hall won a special gold award, while the judges considered the Stepping Through Time Garden a major achievement. ‘An excellent transformation of a seriously neglected site into an interactive shrubbery with a story.’
Further golds were awarded to the beautiful rose garden at Manor House 1707; Hardwick Hall and Park; the Dun Cow; and the private garden of Ron and Brenda Wright at 61 Station Road. Sedgefield Racecourse won Silver Gilt. Bloom Chairman Howard Smith was surprised but delighted to receive a special award for his outstanding voluntary commitment to Sedgefield in Bloom.
The judges commended the Bloom team on all that it achieves within the community – ‘horticulture, social activities, networking, fundraising, business involvement.’ The Bloomers are very grateful to everyone for the terrific community support throughout the year. New members are welcome, no experience or gardening knowledge necessary.
Sedgefield’s annual Scarecrow Festival took place this August with many locals joining in the fun.
Despite the overcast weather scarecrows were displayed all across the village with a number of ideas being produced from straw, clothes and even old dolls. Displays involved Banana Man, the Halloween Howlers and Rapunzel - who almost lost her golden locks to the wind.
Amongst some difficult competition St Edmund’s Pre-school Coffee & Cake Group took 3rd place with Mr Potato Head and 2nd place was taken by an elegant Ballet Dancer who danced across her stage in the village. The winner of Sedgefield Scarecrow Festival 2017 was The Leas Ensemble, The Wizard of Oz. After being blown from Kansas to Sedgefield the characters of the yellow brick road; The Lion, Tin Man, Scarecrow and of course Dorothy looked amazing.
Sealed bid offers are being invited for a beautiful, three-storey Georgian doll’s house which, say those who have seen it, would make a wonderful birthday or Christmas present.
The house comes complete with a range of furniture and has been given to St Edmund’s Church with a request that the money raised should be put towards the cost of running the ancient building. The donor has asked to remain anonymous. The house measures 28inches high by 22 inches deep and 13inches deep and was assembled by a local cabinet maker. It is now on display at St Edmund’s but arrangements to view it when the church is closed can be made with Parish warden Brian Mutch on 01740 622302.
It will be sold using the ‘sealed bid’ system with a reserve of £250. Bids should be sent to Parish Administrator Rachel Stephenson at 3 Ivy Row, Station Road, Sedgefield, TS21 2JT with the envelope clearly marked ‘Doll’s House’ Closing date for bids is December 1 and the result will be announced at the Church Gift Day coffee morning on December 8. Nine-year-old Anna Richards of Sedgefield is pictured checking out the furnishings of the house before it goes on the market.
Attendees at the latest Sedgefield Business Breakfast made a comfortable crowd in the newly refurbished Fletcher Room at the Parish Hall. New faces are always welcome, and several newcomers mingled with regular participants over coffee, croissants and bacon butties. The event was kindly sponsored by town councillors Allan Blakemore and Chris Lines, with food and drink provided by Toshach’s Tea Shop. Calum Baker of Durham County Council's Business Energy Efficiency Programme (BEEP) and John Atkinson of the North East Business Support Fund (NBSL) briefly updated guests on their programmes and funding opportunities, and then the enthusiastic networking continued.
The breakfast was the latest event organised by the growing Sedgefield Business Network (SBN) and was free to attend. The next Sedgefield Business Breakfast will take place on 14th November, also in the Fletcher Room, sponsored by local business Kyle Cannings Ltd.
As usual, sign up (and find out more about getting involved in SBN) by contacting email@example.com. You can also find SBN on Facebook and follow @SedgefieldBN on Twitter.
Is looking to recruit casual playleaders in its new purpose built facility.
Successful applicant would work flexibly to cover between 7:25-9am and 3-6pm, Monday – Friday term time and between 7:30am-6pm in school holidays as and when required.
Level 3 childcare qualification or experience of working with children would be an advantage. For further information contact Sue Bell on 01740 623565, or send your CV to Sedgefield Out of School Fun Club, Rectory Row, Sedgefield, TS21 3BJ or email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
In Sedgefield and their supporters are being offered an opportunity to see some of the most precious Anglo-Saxon artefacts in the world - now on display as part of Durham Cathedral’s much- praised ‘Open Treasure’ experience. The visit has now been re-arranged for Tuesday, October 10, which includes a buffet lunch in the Cathedral’s Prior’s Hall. A coach will leave Sedgefield Parish Hall at 11.30am that day and return by 5pm. The cost of £26 per head includes everything. Friends have also given early notice of their annual festive shopping trip to York on Thursday, December 7th. Anyone interested in either visit should contact Secretary Alison Hodgson on 01740 620912 or Membership Secretary Brian Mutch on 01740 622302.