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How times change. The minute book of the parish council for May 1986 reported that the end of year accounts showed a balance in hand of just £85.90.  Just over 30 years later, the total has grown into four figures.


In 2019 all parish councils will hold elections, and would-be new members can put their names forward  as candidates. If there are more candidates than there are seats on the council, an election will take place on Thursday May 2nd under the auspices of Rushcliffe Borough Council.

But that wasn’t always the case. It was only in 1970 that Widmerpool took the decision to upgrade its standing and elect a parish council to run its affairs. That council is still operating today – obviously with different members – but with the same aim: to improve the life of Widmerpool residents.

Prior to 1970 parish affairs were dealt with at an annual parish meeting and any important decisions were conveyed to Widmerpool’s representative on Bingham Rural District Council.

Back in 1970 it was a very busy time in the village, because in June the new parish council was elected and, on July 30th, the first official parish council meeting was held in the then village hall. The councillors were: CG Brooks, Rex Griffith (chairman), Mrs Russell, Mrs Screaton, Tony Wooley, E Wincup and R Wadkin.

Before Rushcliffe Borough Council was created in 1974 every village had their own representative on the Bingham Rural District Council. And, in some peoples’ view, small villages were better represented in those days, whereas now a single councillor may look after three or four villages.

At the end of the 20th century the Council members were: CG Brooks, Tony Hill, Al Jones, Geoff Garratt, Mrs Rosemary Long, Mrs B Thurrel, A Woodhouse (Chairman). Reg Thurrel was the excellent clerk to the council and because there was no village hall, meetings were held in the Automobile Association Hall.

One of Widmerpool village’s social events was Betty Breakfast, which was started by Betty Broadbent in the late 1990s. Betty was a great doer for anything in the village. She held the first breakfast in her house and future events always took place in early January.  They eventually became so popular that, with about 80 people attending, they had to move from the village to Willoughby Village Hall.

The village also organised a Harvest Supper which, at the turn of the century, had been going for about fifteen or sixteen years. The first few were held in the Cricket Pavilion, but they too moved to Willoughby Village Hall when the number of attendees increased.

Another event during that period was the Safari supper. And there was also the village picnic, which was held in June or July on the Beehive Lawn.

Many residents often echo the comment, “Oh! How nice it would be to turn the clock back and have the same social type events today.”

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