Sedgefield Heritage 100

Walk and Talk Trust, a non-profit organisation dedicated to promoting physical and mental wellbeing through outdoor activities, has launched its latest project, The Heritage 100.

This ambitious initiative aims to create 100 waymarked walking routes throughout County Durham, encouraging residents to embrace the benefits of walking, while discovering the rich heritage of their local communities.

Sedgefield is one of the first places where a Heritage 100 walk has been installed.

Each of the routes will be mapped on the popular navigation app Komoot, and physically waymarked. Every walk will be accompanied by a captivating story that brings to life the heritage of the locations along the way. By connecting communities with their past and present, the project intends to foster a sense of pride and belonging among the residents, and encourage more people to get out and explore their local area.

The Sedgefield Heritage 100 walk offers residents a picturesque threemile figure-of-eight route, starting and ending on the village green outside St. Edmund’s Church. The walk showcases Sedgefield’s unique historical landmarks and the natural beauty of the nearby countryside.

The start is easy to find on the village green at our grandfather clock shaped marker post, which features the Heritage 100 logo and a fantastic etching of Neptune, the statue of which the route later passes in Hardwick Park.

Looking ahead to the new year, the Walk and Talk Trust is actively seeking volunteers to collaborate with renowned author David Willem, who will be writing the story of the Sedgefield walk, which will be used to promote the initiative. The Trust is particularly interested in hearing from local residents who can provide oral accounts of Sedgefield's past, preserving and immortalising tales of local heroes, myths, and legends.

Residents will also be able to join the Walk and Talk Trust on an organised community walk around the Sedgefield Heritage 100 route in the near future, so look out for news of that.

Feeding Families

We are delighted to announce we have moved into our packing centre which is located in Unit 2B, Salters Lane Industrial Estate, Sedgefield TS21 3EE.

The centre will be operating Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays between 10am and 2pm (closing Tuesday 19 December and recommencing on Tuesday 9 January) and we would be delighted to welcome anyone who would like to come down and learn about the work we do.

If you would like to bring any donations we would be delighted to receive them.

As we indicated in last month's Sedgefield News we are holding a Christmas collection between Monday 27 November and Saturday 2 December, and we would be grateful if you could support us with a donation to Feeding Families (list below) - every item donated makes a huge difference to those in need.

A round up from the Schools

Community College Update

During the final week before the half-term holiday, 150 of our Year 7 students took part in our annual residential visit to the Kingswood Outwood Bounds education centre in Hexham. Despite torrential rain at times, our students had a fantastic, if muddy experience!

This is the third consecutive year that the visit has taken place and it is now a key part of the school’s transition programme, helping students make new friends and become part of the team here at SCC. We hope the students enjoyed the experience and thank you to our families for washing all of the dirty laundry when they got home!

Meanwhile back at school, the weekly Super Curriculum sessions that take place each Wednesday remain a particular highlight of each school week. Last half-term, there were no fewer than 26 different enrichment programmes that our students could choose from.

Many of these activities involved students having opportunities to explore their interests in the creative and performing arts. Students could choose sessions relating to collage making, still life painting, surreal portraiture and magazine graffiti (to name just a few of the options).

The pictures show some examples of the fantastic artwork that our talented Year 8 students were able to produce this half-term.

After school clubs

Last week, the return to school at Sedgefield Hardwick saw the launch of our new phase of afterschool clubs in Key Stage 2. This half-term, we have had the opportunity to take part in a stop-motion club, a cookery club or a gaming club.

The gaming club makes use of the Minecraft app on iPads, and makes a return after being extremely popular last year. Each week, our teacher sets us challenges and we work together in small teams within Minecraft to construct buildings, biomes and environments to meet the specifications. In a few weeks, we will be switching to ‘survival’ mode, where we will start with nothing but our bare hands and have to work together in teams to build ourselves a home and settlement - almost like Robinson Crusoe when he was shipwrecked!

In cookery, we have been experiencing and cooking food from different countries and regions each week. So far, we have studied India, where we cooked coconut barfi, a dessert sweet, and also mango lassi, a fruity drink often drunk to celebrate Diwali, the festival of light!

We have also studied the cuisine of the USA, where we baked a variety of cheesecakes, ranging in flavours from raspberry, strawberry and lemon to caramel and chocolate!

We also made milkshakes (created by hand!) as a tasty side to go with the cheesecakes. We’re all really excited to find out which country or region we will be studying next week!

Finally, the stop-motion animation club allows us to use our imaginations to create new sculptures that we can then bring to life using our iPads and stopmotion animation apps. Not only this, but those of us who were in last term’s Sculpting Club were able to use our creations from then and bring them to life on screen.

We have created backdrops to add depth, colour and detail to our scenes and used very small movements to show the changes. We have a wide variety of creations, ranging from gummy bears to jungle animals and space scenes!

We are hoping to publish our final productions for everybody to view. Hollywood here we come!

Dance and Sporting Champions

As a school we are proud to have our own dance Champion in Year 6 - Carla. She has achieved first place as the East Regional winner of the Epic Dance Championships.

Carla has been dancing since the age of three in contemporary dance competitions. She has inspired others at Sedgefield Primary by her choreographed performances of her fast and slow routines.

Our specialist sports coaches deliver a programme of specialist PE lessons across all age phases of the school in all areas of sport including dance.

Sedgefield Primary pupils achieved success in a recent cross-country festival. Our qualified winning places were as follows:
• Karl (Year 6) first place
• Tilli (Year 5) third place
• Sonny (Year 4) second place.

This has qualified them all for County finals. This is an exceptional achievement, which Sedgefield Primary are proud to shout about! Well done to all our pupils on your current and ongoing sporting achievements.

Exploring local heritage
Sedgefield Primary Year 5 pupils were delighted to be able to investigate their natural heritage as they visited the Captain Cook Birthplace Museum at Stewart Park in Middlesbrough.

They explored maps showing the adventures of this intrepid individual. They were also interested and at times horrified to learn about conditions at sea for past explorers.

This Geography trip enabled pupils to gain a sense of their local area in its wider historical and geographical context. Pupils were impressed at how Captain Cook had placed Middlesbrough on the world map.

He was the first European to cross the Antarctic circle.

Cook also mapped many island groups and was the first explorer to know of their existence. Pupils felt proud to be part of such significant local heritage.

u3a update

Well, did you guess? Dave Dean’s talk ‘Beyond the Chequered Band’ referred to the cap he wore and the many years he spent as a Special Constable in Darlington. We learned that although unpaid volunteers, Special Constables are expected to do all the same jobs and have all the same responsibilities as regular policemen.

However, their main time is spent on the streets doing intelligence-based patrols in crime hotspots, taking part in crime prevention initiatives and in increasing community awareness. I think many of us were unaware of their importance and relevance in the fight against crime and criminal behaviour.

This month was our turn in the regular Friday Coffee Morning rota in the Parish Hall. We were delighted that so many people from the village turned out to support us and enjoy our delicious selection of home-made cakes, scones and pastries. We’d also like to publicly thank Joyce from the Parish Hall for all her help with setting up and throughout the morning. She’s a treasure! Profits from the morning will be used by our Photography Group to professionally print, mount and display a selection of their recent photographs.

A small group of our Pop-up Crafters have been designing and crafting a range of items to decorate our u3a tree in the forthcoming Christmas Tree Festival in St Edmunds Church. Do go along and marvel at the skills and ingenuity on display.

In December, we are having a break from routine and are planning our annual Christmas Party and Christmas Lunch. The weather may be turning dark, cold and dreary but the members of the u3a refuse to let that dampen their enthusiasm for living life to the full – do come and join us if you’re retired and of a like mind!

Remembrance Sunday

We were blessed with a lovely bright, sunny day for Remembrance Sunday. St. Edmund's Church was packed almost to capacity for the service at which we welcomed Pam Royale (Deputy Lord Lieutenant of County Durham representing His Majesty King Charles III), Cllr David Brown (representing County Durham), Cllr Dave Jasper (Mayor) Mrs Annette Lawson (Mayor's Consort) and Cllr. Mel Carr (Chair Sedgefield Town Council).

As usual, the uniformed organisations in Sedgefield turned out in great numbers with members of the Guides, Scouts, Brownies and Cubs taking part in the service, which was led by Michael King (Lay Minister at St. Edmund's), with support from Rev. David Hall, from the Methodist Church.

Thank you to the leaders of the uniformed organisations for helping to organise the service.

There was a huge crowd at the war memorial for the Act of Remembrance. Binyon's Lines were read by Laura Lucas-Hartley, a former member of the armed forces and the Last Post and Reveille were played by Carris Woodhouse, who responded to the request on social media for help.

She played superbly and with a lot of confidence. Wreaths were laid at the war memorial with Jim Dean (a former submariner) standing guard. Thanks also to Lol Crallin for his help with the PA system which worked excellently.

It was a very moving occasion on which to remember those who have died as a result of war, those who have suffered life changing injuries and all those affected by conflicts past and present, but as important is the opportunity to pray for peace in our time in those countries affected by war now.

Thank you to all who helped in any way with the service and Act of Remembrance, particularly our Town Clerk, Jane Ayre and Finance Officer, Julia Rowsby, who oversaw the laying of the wreaths and other behind the scenes functions. Michael King

Thanks to the SCA Craft Club for the poppies for the Remembrance Memorial Garden

Christmas Tree recycling

Maybe you are thinking of getting your Christmas tree this weekend to add a little sparkle in these dark days? Well, now think about at the end of Christmas when you don't know what to do with your now tired tree.

For several years, the Sedgefield in Bloom group has offered a service where we collect your trees for £5 each and recycle them. This year, we are very lucky to be working with AW Treecare who will chip the trees onsite and then chippings will be used around Sedgefield. True recycling. The money collected will help us through the year to keep our town looking beautiful.

Please support us in our fund raising exercise by contacting Alice Hobson on or 01740 622706.

Wishing you all a very Happy Christmas and our grateful thanks for your continued support. Marie Etherington