normanton on soar leicestershire village website
HISTORY

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Snippets from the Records (2)

Snippets from the Records (1)

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Snippets from the Records (2)

 SNIPPETS FROM THE RECORDS – provided by Lesley Haddon

The first parish council in Normanton on soar was formed on 04 December 1894. It had two charities – Bartholomew Hickling’s Charity Bible, and the William Willoughby charity which bequeathed forty shillings for four gowns to four poor widows, six pounds to six men of occupation or husbandry who had grown poor, and six shillings and eight pence for a sermon to be preached on Whit Sunday. The William Willoughby Charity was formed in 1588 and it is still going, albeit the funds are very small.  The investment is now worth only £400 and the income goes to St James Church which adds to it, and then makes a donation to Sutton Bonington and Normanton on Soar Old People’s Christmas Dinner.
 
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Apparently the Plough Inn was once a farm. Coal was brought by boat and sold by the tenant, Mr Fletcher. He realised its tourism potential and opened a tea room.
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Maggots in Normanton on Soar. The village had a maggot factory located at the railway end of Far Lane. Tins of maggots were sent all over the country via Hathern Railway Station. The smell at times was indescribable and many houses were invaded by flies. Although they received many complaints the District Council Medical officer for Health decreed there was no problem.
Did you know that Hathern Station, actually located in our parish, was closed around 1960 by the Beeching Axe, which was the informal name for the British Government's attempt in the 1960s to control the increasing cost of running the British railway system by closing what it considered to be under used and loss-making railway lines.
It was a reaction to the failed railway modernisation plan of the 1950s, which spent enormous amounts of money on buying new equipment, such as new diesel and electric locomotives, without first examining the role of the railway and its requirements, recognising the implications of changing old-fashioned working practices, or tackling the problem of chronic over manning. The result of this was to plunge the railway system deeply into debt. So what’s new!!
 
Where was the late Ev Sketchley when the start of the Second World War was announced?
Ev lived with his family at (now demolished) Lilac cottage on Butt Lane. On the 303 September 1939 Ev was away on a fishing weekend in Welney, Cambridgeshire. Sitting on a bridge, relaxing and waiting for the fish to bite, a passer-by told him the news. On his return home to Normanton on Soar, later that day, his family gave him further details of the prime Minister’s broadcast. Ev at 19 years old knew he would be called on to join the armed services, as would many others of his acquaintance.
 
In the early 20th century there were three churches in the village, the Wesleyan Chapel on Far Lane, the Baptist Chapel, Main Street, and the Parish Church, also on Main Street. Today only the Parish Church is used for religious purposes. The Wesleyan Chapel has now been converted for domestic use, and the Baptist Chapel on Main Street demolished.
 
Documentary evidence has revealed that the Rempstone to Hathern road was originally turnpiked. The turnpike gates are known to have been located in an area close to the bus shelter on the Normanton side at the end of Moor Lane. Unfortunately today there is no visible evidence of the turnpike
 
 A ferry is shown on the 1771 Normanton on Soar enclosure plan but could have existed prior to this time. Its site was likely to have been selected because at this bend in the river may have been shallower and slow-flowing      
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The railway line opened in 1840 with a station located on the A6006 just within the parish. Bridges were built over the line. The line cut across fields, isolating farms and stopping access from the main Rempstone to Hathern Road down Far Lane and into the village. At one time it is said it was possible to take a path under the line where it meets Far Lane but this is no longer accessible.
 
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 In the past the River Soar was very important to Normanton on Soar village economy. Horse-  drawn barges to the Plough Inn wharf transported coal and other commodities. Fishing would  have been popular, whether by licence or poaching. As far back as 1797 it was said that the Soar was reputed to produce the best pike in England, and in 1850 eels were known to be  regularly speared.