Most days I eat my lunch of soup and a sandwich
at home in the kitchen. But at the beginning of October I was invited to a plethora
of luncheons in Derbyshire. First up was the famous Brailsford Annual Ploughing Match
on President Brian Ashby’s ground in the village. Amidst the rare beef and the mud
baths – or walkways – was our Royal Guest, The Princess Royal. The Thursday saw me at
Matlock Golf Club lecturing to the Matlock Ladies Luncheon Club and a dining room
packed with over 100 well-dressed ladies. The Friday was a more sublime affair at
home when I hosted the County Club and 34 members with the ever-ebullient chairman
David White raising our spirits. Saturday was spent serving in Her Ladyships’ Herbert’s
tea rooms, whilst the gluttony continued at Derby Museum prior to the High Sheriff’s
Legal Service at the Cathedral. Monday I gasped for air before the Rotary Club of
Ashbourne hosted me as their after-lunch speaker on the Tuesday in the delightful settings
of Callow Hall. After all the voluptuous vittles and conversation I retired to my bed
to recuperate. What a marathon!.
After 20 years I have finally got round to arranging for a fencing
contractor to replace all the guards that surround our trees in the parkland. Stewart Fearn, the fencer, refers to them as ‘tree boxes’ and he has replaced the 20 or so in the front
parkland and the ten in our rear parkland. One of the frustrations I have with forestry regulations is that there seems to be plenty of grant aid for planting and little, if any, for after-care and maintenance. Nevertheless I have taken the executive decision that
our trees need protection so that they can evade being gnawed and chewed by cattle and sheep and, therefore, will last long after I have given up managing Tissington. Have a look for them on your next visit…they do look smart!.
‘Pour, Oh Pour, The Pirate Sherry’
Ten months ago we greeted the High Sheriff’s statement that he was to fill Buxton Opera House on a Saturday night in October during the shooting season at the end of half term for charity with some mockery and derision! However, on 31st October Oliver and his wife Fiona fulfilled their dream by hosting a gala performance of Gilbert & Sullivan’s
Pirates of Penzance to a full house of 900 including the great, the good and the Gilbert
fans of Derbyshire. They raised over £30,000 for their two charities, AgeUK and Foundation
Derbyshire – a tribute not just to them but to all involved! With the G&S festival having moved north in past years, it was delightful to hear their chords once again. It
was a super evening, a superb effort.
Dave MacAlister has been the Assistant County Commissioner of Derbyshire Scouting for the past ten years. As President of the Baden-Powell founded movement Dave has cajoled and commissioned me to sign hundreds of awards, present them and attend various
functions throughout the decade all celebrating the marvellous feats and achievements
of our young people. My final duty on his watch was to present Dave with a fitting
thank you present at the annual Rampage event at Drum Hill Scout Camp that sees various
troops compete against each other. The winners this year were from a Buxton Troop but
we salute you Dave and wish you all the best in the future..