Northants Telegraph Sunday Extra - free holiday schemes, firm helping test King's sword and hospice thank you

Updates, and things you need to know
Free holiday scheme places are on offer for childrenFree holiday scheme places are on offer for children
Free holiday scheme places are on offer for children

We've got so much news these days that we can't always squeeze everything in to the working week. So every Sunday we'll bring you updates on recent stories, some news-in-brief and other things you need to know from across Corby, Wellingborough, East Northamptonshire and Wellingborough.

Kettering Station is the venue for Kettering and District Locomotive Society’s unveiling of a new noticeboard.

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Between 9am and 10.30am on Saturday (October 16) the Time Travellers’ room on Platform 1 run by Kettering Civic Society will also be open to view items of local interest.

It will be a busy morning at the station as the unveiling of the noticeboard coincides with visiting steam locomotive The Duchess of Sutherland on its route to York with the Yorkshireman Railtour due off at 9.47am.

Free holiday scheme places are on offer for children in receipt of free school meals on the Hazel Leys, Kingswood and Exeter estates in Corby.

Thanks to funding from the Office of the Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner, Corby Sports Dimensions (CSD) is offering a limited number of free places on its popular Spooktacular holiday activity camps over the October half term.

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During the summer, CSD worked with Northamptonshire Sport and many other organisations across the county in delivering the Holiday Activity Fund programme - a pot of central Government funding designed to give children on free school meals access to 20 hours of physical activity and healthy meals during the summer holidays.

The sword being tested using equipment on loan from RS Components'The sword being tested using equipment on loan from RS Components'
The sword being tested using equipment on loan from RS Components'

The HAF programme was a huge success, with CSD receiving more than 250 orders with a HAF discount code. This programme only runs during the summer, Christmas and Easter Holidays so CSD managed to secure extra funding to cover some places during the October half term break.

Camps are taking place in Corby Business Academy, Cottingham Primary and Kettering Tresham College with bookings open now.

Children given one of the free places will be able to access an unlimited range of physical and creative activities as well as extras including transport available from a local pick up point , a nutritious breakfast and a healthy afternoon tea.

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Alongside funded places CSD is also open for those who are looking for childcare and extra physical and wellbeing support through the holidays.

CSD is also proposing to emulate its popular Toy and Coat Appeal from last Christmas, led by CSD’s Director, Rosemary Saunder and funding executive Zoe McGhee which resulted in a free pop-up shop in both Kingswood Neighbourhood Centre the Ise Lodge Scout Hut.

This year CSD is launching a Christmas Food Bank drive. Donations will involve all of those wonderful Christmas treats we can sometimes take for granted. From November, CSD will be appealing for biscuits, selection boxes and long life necessities, ready to ensure families across the county are stocked up for Christmas. You can book your place here:

Kettering’s Cransley Hospice is marking Hospice Care Week with a special thank you message from matron Heather Cook and gifting special thank you hearts of wildflower seeds to everyone making a donation to the charity during October.

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Heather said: “I’m incredibly proud of our team who have shown such strength during this unprecedented time. They’ve had to deliver heartbreaking news without being able to give a comforting hug, they’ve learnt to show empathy to a patient’s struggles while wearing a face mask and continued to deliver compassion and sensitivity whilst working within the unnatural constraints and restrictions that are so important to ensure everyone’s safety. We thrive on human connection to provide comfort during such difficult times and we have had to adapt to new ways of delivering our outstanding care and support.

“On behalf of myself – and the whole clinical team at Cransley Hospice, I wanted to thank everyone who has visited the hospice during this time for their patience, understanding and willingness to work with us as we care for your loved ones.

“Thanks to your support, we have still enabled patients to receive specialist care and support at a place of their choosing, for pressure to be relieved from families and for precious memories to continue being made.”

Raunds Library - Happy birthday to Room on the Broom! This month marks 20 years since the children's book by Julia Donaldson was first published. Much loved by the whole family it has become a children's classic, and has even been animated by the BBC.

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To mark the occasion Raunds Community Library is holding a children's activity day on Saturday, October 16. All in time for Halloween, there will be a chance to make witch hats, witch figures, and win a book. Fancy dressed is encouraged but not essential.

This is a free event, with plenty of free parking around the library. Just turn up on the day between 10am to 2pm.

A Corby man has been charged with burglary after a break-in at a shop in Market Harborough.

Thomas Gaffney, 47, of Landseer Court, is accused of breaking into Savers in the town’s High Street in the early hours of September 17.

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During the incident, boxes of perfume worth more than £760 were stolen.

RS Components has assisted a team of scientific investigators from The Wallace Collection in London, in carrying out tests on Henry V’s sword at his tomb in Westminster Abbey.

The Corby-based components firm loaned a hardness testing product to help abbey collections team investigators ascertain whether the sword was a ceremonial piece or a real fighting sword.

A non-invasive, non-destructive means of analysing the sword’s metal was required, to ascertain the integrity of the blade and hilt. This was to provide results to be published in a book about King Henry V’s achievements, which will be released to coincide with the impending occasion of the 600th anniversary of his death in October 1422.

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David Edge from the Wallace Collection said: “Prior to this testing, nothing had been known about the composition or quality of the sword’s metal. Although long associated with the tomb of Henry V in Westminster Abbey, even the sword’s history was uncertain. In form and style it corresponds to a later date than 1422, the year of Henry V’s funeral, so it could even have been the funerary sword of Henry VII (d. 1509) instead.

“While other techniques had been ruled out, non-invasive hardness-testing using an ultrasonic testing unit was the right approach, but our own instrument was very old and failed at the time we needed it. The equipment supplied by RS was an excellent replacement, and was able to shed light on the weapon’s metallurgy and quality. The tests proved that the sword was not a ceremonial piece at all but was indeed a fighting sword, with evidence of multiple sharpenings during use.”

Mental health campaigners in Northants have joined forces with county footballers with the goal of raising awareness of mental health issues.

The importance of social sporting activities including local football was brought home to communities across Northamptonshire when teams were prevented from getting together during lockdown.

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Northamptonshire Mind has teamed up with the Nene Valley Sunday League in a unique project to get the message across about the importance of keeping in touch, reaching out for a chat, and remembering that someone will always be there to listen or to provide support.

League chairman Graham Pinney said: “It is vital players know where to go for support and as a league we wanted to ensure we are doing all we can to help them talk and signpost them to where they can receive support for their mental health.

“For many players, referees and volunteers, football is their only outlet to forget what is going on in their lives. Send a text, pick up the phone – it could save a life.”

Nick Tite, Communications and Fundraising Lead for Northamptonshire Mind, said: “It has been a challenging 18 months for so many people.

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“We are pleased to support the Nene Valley Sunday League in this campaign and have commissioned Wellingborough-based Print Data Solutions to create special captains’ armbands that will display our logo alongside that of the league at matches being played on World Mental Health Awareness Day on Sunday, 10 October 2021.”

Corby Town Shopping and Willow Place is inviting entries for a poetry and art competition to mark this year’s 100th anniversary of The Royal British Legion’s Poppy Appeal.

The competition is open to all secondary school age children, who are invited to submit a poem or picture on the theme of ‘Remembrance’. Entries should be submitted on a single sheet of A4, one side only and students should write their name, age (11-18 eligible) and school clearly in block capitals on the back. Entries need to be sent to the Town Centre Management Office, Allied House, 1 Spencer Court, Corby NN17 1NU by the closing date of 25 October 2021.

There will be a first, second and third prize of £75, £50 and £25 in each category to spend in the shopping centre, plus 10 runners-up prizes of The Lost Generation: The Young Person’s Guide to World War I. A selection of the best entries will be displayed in the town centre in November.