Sedgefield News

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The 2021 Sedgefield Agricultural & Horticultural Show

The Show’s organising committee have taken the sad decision to cancel this year’s show, which was due to be held on the Robert Brown show field on Saturday August 8th 2021.

After consultation with the Association of Agricultural Shows and Government guidelines relating to Covid19, it has been decided that based on the information available to us, it will not be practical to organise and hold the show this year. In making this decision, we consider many aspects and particularly the safety and wellbeing of all stakeholders including, the organising committee, show members, judges, stewards, exhibitors, trade-stand representatives, the general public and the people of Sedgefield.

Government data will continue to dictate many activities including travel to different area’s event attendance and post lockdown timescales. There could be changes to the proposed lifting of restrictions and this information may or may not be available to us at the time of this event being due to take place.

Cancelling this year’s Show has been an extremely difficult decision for the Committee Members to arrive at, particularly as we know how much this event means to our local community. The Committee would like to thank the volunteers and supporters of Sedgefield Show-this ongoing support is vital in permitting us to deliver this special event each year. We are looking forward and we are already laying plans for Sedgefield Show 2022 – we look forward to seeing you there on Saturday 13th August 2022!

We are always looking to recruit additional volunteers and supporters to help with future shows and would look forward to talking to anyone that may be interested to contact: or 07803599294.
Ian Mason, Chairman.

Regular Feature

Greener Sedgefield

Waste can be used to refer to so many things. Obviously it can be the items in your household bin but it could be the clothes you don't wear anymore, the mask you wore to pop to the shops or the items you don't want after having a spring clean. 'Waste' can be useful, passed on correctly and how we pass things on has evolved recently, with lockdown.

Charities have struggled to raise much needed funds with shops closed and events cancelled. Some have adapted by accepting good condition items by freepost. They are then sold online, passed to stores or if unsellable, recycled. Charities such as Oxfam and British Heart Foundation do this and you can gift aid at the same time. Some will take vinyl, books and ornaments in addition to clothing via this method. The Heart Foundation has also recently resumed furniture and electrical collections. Please consider using the local Facebook larder page for usable unwanted items. Recently, old paving slabs and helium party balloons have been offered and claimed, showing that someone may need what you don't want and it's not always obvious what! Getting more wear out of things generally means less waste ending up at the tip.

The pandemic has exacerbated single use. Over 100 billion face masks are used worldwide every month and not all disposed of safely. Unfortunately, it's estimated by scientists that there are now more face masks in the oceans than jellyfish. Wilko's have stepped up by putting face mask collection boxes in stores. After a period of quarantine the masks, mostly made of plastic, are processed by a Yorkshire company into become building materials, furniture or even more collection boxes. Keep yours and deposit them in the special collection boxes in local Darlington, Durham or Middlesbrough stores as well as others further afield.

Single use waste includes medicine blister packs, which don't go in your recycle bin. They contain mostly plastic which could be reused but the effort to process this has meant that no company was willing to do so until now. Terracycle have teamed up with Superdrug and some pharmacies who take them in their drop off boxes in store. They grind down the separated plastics and sell the raw material to manufacturers. Information on box locations can be found on the Terracycle website. A donation will be made to Marie Curie, Superdrug’s chosen charity.

A reminder though, some waste is exactly what it says - WASTE! So PLEASE do not put gloves, single use masks or lateral flow tests into your recycle bin. If you do this it will contaminate the entire truckload, which is then consigned to the incinerator completely losing the point of recycling.

Sedgefield Calendar

The New Year may be a long way off but local photographers are already being urged to take pictures of life in and around Sedgefield for possible use in the 2022 calendar planned by the Friends of St. Edmund’s Church. Membership secretary Brian Mutch said “Because of the recent constraints, we have not chosen a theme for 2022 so photographers have much greater scope to demonstrate their ability to spot and produce an eye-catching picture for a highly-rated calendar.

Drone photographs are welcome from those holding current CAA approval.”
Closing date for entries is mid-October.
Copyright-free entries can be in colour or monochrome and suitable for use in the now traditional, slimline, month-by-month, hang-anywhere calendar which has proved extremely popular with people over a wide area since it was first launched four years ago.

Entries should be forwarded to Brian via e-mail at or as hard copies to 6 Hasledon Grove, Sedgefield, TS21 2JW.
For more information, call him on 01740 622302.

Community College designated a Behaviour Hub

Sedgefield Community College (SCC) has been selected as a lead school in the Department for Education’s £10 million Behaviour Hub Programme. The selected schools are some of the highest performing schools and multi-academy trusts in England and SCC is one of only three chosen in the North East. The school will partner with other schools who have requested help, to improve pupil behaviour. SCC will work with each school to design the culture they want to see; create an action plan; and monitor their performance.

Geoff Robinson, Head Teacher at SCC, commented: “It is the reputation and performance of SCC that has been instrumental in being designated as a lead school in the Behaviour Hub programme, I want to extend my thanks to all of our students, parents and staff for your support of our school vision and culture. It is through these very high aspirations that our students have demonstrated to DfE that personal responsibility and good discipline overwhelmingly results in the very best Ofsted ratings and overall academic outcomes.”

Me, My Art and Lockdown

Following the Easter break, pupils in Key Stage 2 at Sedgefield Hardwick have been exploring the art world with their topic, ‘Me, My Art and Lockdown’ - about life during lockdown and the challenges that many people have faced. Children in Years 3 and 6 have been sculpting with different materials. Year 3 were inspired by artists such as Jess Miller to create clay face jugs, which symbolise their experiences over the last year.

In Year 6, the children focused on Antony Gormley and other sculptors to create sculptures made of wire to celebrate the freedom we all enjoyed before lockdown and hope to again soon. Year 4 have been examining the work of Jean Baptiste and other artists to create their own silk painting banners while Year 5 have focussed on animation techniques in the style of Nick Park, the creator of the world famous characters Wallace and Gromit, to create their own animation videos. “It has been really fun to see my drawing about lockdown come to life using the techniques of stop-motion just like in the movies,” commented Ellie, a Year 5 pupil.

Chair Cycling Challenge

This summer, Neil O’Connor, the director of Fleet Recruitment Ltd, and chair of Sedgefield Village Veterans, will be undertaking a massive cycling challenge to raise funds for a suicide prevention charity. With the support and backing of his wife and friends, who are riding alongside him, he will cycle from his home in Trimdon Village to Caldicot in South Wales, in just three days, to raise £5,000 for PAPYRUS, the national Charity for the Prevention of Suicide.

Neil explains why he is undertaking the challenge:
“I lost my cousin to suicide. It was horrendous for his young family, his sisters and his poor Mum. I lost an RAF colleague and a much loved friend to suicide. He also left behind a young family and his RAF brothers were heartbroken. Very recently I lost another of my dearest friends to suicide - someone I loved like a brother, who also left behind two young kids and a heartbroken family.

It was a final straw for me, and I just felt compelled to do something, anything, to try and help stop this happening. I hope you will get behind us all, and make a donation, no matter how small.” Neil suffers from a liver disease, which means he becomes exhausted easily, so three back-to-back ten hour rides will be a truly gruelling challenge.

The ride will take place in August and if you would like to help, please visit Neil’s fundraising page at


Some frankly crazy rumours concerning the fate of the old Barclays Bank building were finally quashed last month, when we learned that it had been taken by an established family run business. Work has been ongoing for some time on the old building. to adapt and modernise it within in order to provide up-to-the-minute accommodation for owner, Stephen Wears, his son Philip and other employees and the company, Mango Dental Technology
It comprises three main components.

The Technology Studio delivers dental restorations to dental practices throughout the UK. The Denture Clinic, responsible for making bespoke dentures. And the Mango Tray Centre, the biggest independent provider of whitening trays in the UK.

Dental Technology has been in the Wears family for three generations, and the move into Sedgefield gives the company room to grow. New equipment and staff will enable continuous development of the digital design and manufacturing of existing and new products.

Mango will also be opening a Denture Clinic within the old Sedgefield bank. Stephen is trained as a clinical dental technician and can provide new dentures direct to the public. He has also trained with Japanese master Jiro Abe and is able to provide suction dentures that stay in without the need for fixative or dental implants. “As a dental technician I have a fairly good idea of what is needed from case to case, but the big advantage of being a clinical denture technician is that I get to see exactly what you want and need from your denture. The result is that I can give you a tailored denture that will fit and look exactly as you want it to.”

Dental Technology has changed significantly over recent years and Mango are pioneers of these developments. Using digital technology to make your smiles, including 3D printers to assist in creating dentures and dental crowns. Next month in Business Update, Paul Savage brings you the first of a new series on the science and technology businesses developing on NETPARK.

The “s106” pot of money - continuing a short series

Last month we laid out the system whereby developers pay into a fund managed by the Area Action Partnership, to the benefit of Education, Sport, Open Space and Community Projects.

First, a summary of information received in answer to residents’ questions on Education.
"On the school issue, £319,352 has been secured for primary education from the Turners garage site. In relation to the academy issue we have a statutory responsibility to ensure that every child can be provided with a place in a state-funded school in the relevant area. Academies are state funded schools therefore they have to be taken into account when the impact of additional housing is considered with respect to the sufficiency of school places. Sedgefield Community College is the local secondary school for Sedgefield and Fishburn, therefore if there is insufficient capacity at that school to accommodate additional pupils from housing developments, it is appropriate that the council requests s106 monies to contribute towards additional teaching accommodation".

Other funds received & expected
from Storey Homes (St Edmunds Manor) - £66,666 Community + £80,000 Sports
from Taylor Wimpey (Eden Drive) £91,973 Community + £110,367 Sports (similar sums due in July 21).
from Tolent Homes (Hardwick Grange) £147,600 for Open Space, due in July 21
Livin (Hardwick Homes) should contribute £151,397 for Play/Recreation. No date is yet specified.

As at January 2021 a total of £349,006 has been received with no further payments due until July 2021. Receipt of further funding is subject to market conditions and developer realisation of anticipated revenues.

AAP decisions
"Given the protracted schedule of receipts the S106 Group took the decision to prioritise capital sports projects, once sufficient funding had been realised, as these also legally constitute facilities for the benefit of the community. Whilst no funding has yet been formally allocated, Sedgefield Harriers are in the process of submitting a business case in support of their indicative allocation of £345,000.

Further funding will be committed for applications by other constituted Clubs as and when it becomes available during 2021/2022."

"Total funds identified as Community contributions are £240,722, and applications for Community projects will be formally invited once the remaining funds are received from 2022 onwards."

Sedgefield Town Council’s role
In this type of funding system, local councils are expected to play a part in the allocation of funding, but STC say that they only recently learned of the above information and have had no role in funding decisions taken.

Because the question was raised at recent meetings of the Town Council about the legality committing the majority of the s106 monies for this area to one capital sports project, the East Durham Community Athletics Track, without consultation in this community, it was decided to hold an Extraordinary Meeting of Sedgefield Town Council on Tuesday 27th April to debate the issue. We will keep you informed of the outcome and would welcome your comments on this issue.

Back in the Saddle

With the lockdown due to ease soon, the equine world is one of many breathing a cautious sigh of relief. The pandemic has had far-reaching effects on the sector. Owners have been unable to see their horses, as some stables locked down; many events have been cancelled, losing essential income for many; horse enthusiasts have been unable to ride and there have even been reports of riding schools selling horses to afford care for the rest.

We spoke to Jen Green, a local accredited professional coach (BHSII) who also runs a mobile unit for HorseWeighUK. She described the increase she has seen in horse obesity as owners struggled to exercise their horses with the restrictions in place. She also described how, although financial support and grants have been available, this has not been enough for stables, with continuing costs such as vets, farriers and dentists.

Many riding schools will be opening for lessons to the general public again from the start of April and they will have high hopes for a better year ahead for horses and their riders!

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Sedgefield Energy Switch is a new initiative from Sedgefield Development Trust.

Working together with iChoosr, we're trying to help Sedgefield residents save money on their domestic gas and electricity bills. Sedgefield still continue to have the highest switching rate in the country.

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Key dates:

  Tuesday 30th March-Registration Opens
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  Monday 31st May-Offers letters issued
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Buy Local

Sedgefield Farmers Market is held every first Sunday of the Month, on the village green, from 8.30am to 12.30pm. The market has about 20 stall holders each month, varying throughout the seasons, providing meats, vegatables, Handmade pies, pastries and cakes, Fish, Spices, Cheeses and more.

To book a stall call Roger Clubley: 01740 620609, email Farmers Market:

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