If you have any comments about this website or would like to have a section for a local group or business please contact Roy Hinchliff at or 07933294017

Address for correspondence:

30 West Street,

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{ 14 comments… read them below or add one }

Sean Karley March 7, 2017 at 3:51 pm

I would like to take a group of friends – members of Natural History Societies etc – to visit Swaddywell Pit NR on Sunday 10th September this year. Please say if this might clash with any other activities on the site.
We are usually about 5 to 10 people (but may be more) and are all nature reserve trained.
Is access to the car-park area open on Sundays? On my last visit -solo- I used the small area near the road, and I do not know what are the arrangements for access to the larger car-park.
Many Thanks
Sean Karley
Kettering NHS
Northants NHS
British Plant Gall Society etc.


Roy Hinchliff March 9, 2017 at 10:19 am

Dear Sean,
Thanks for your enquiry, which I have forwarded to one of the Langdyke Countryside Trust’s committee members with a request for them to respond directly to you.
Roy Hinchliff, webadmin


Mavis Pilbeam July 12, 2017 at 10:34 am

Dear Roy,
I visited Swaddywell with a couple of friends on Saturday, having first seen it some years ago when I came for the JC Festival. It was as lovely as ever, and it was good to see the sheep grazing. We were impressed by the numbers of skipper butterflies, and some small tortoiseshell. I would like to send you my photo of a small skipper sharing a teasel with a bumblebee if you could send me your email address. Like most of my photos it is not topknotch brilliant, but you would be welcome to use it for free with my name. Yours sincerely,
Mavis Pilbeam, Clare and Countryside enthusiast


Roy Hinchliff July 12, 2017 at 3:18 pm

Thank you, Mavis, for your comments and the offer of a photo which I would be delighted to publish on the website. I have sent a separate email to your email address so that you can attach your photo to a reply. Thanks again,
Roy Hinchliff
Website administrator


Gemma November 26, 2017 at 7:02 pm

Can you still buy copies of “Exploring the Heritage of Helpston'”?


Roy Hinchliff November 27, 2017 at 7:50 pm

I shall find out for you!


Roy Hinchliff November 28, 2017 at 9:52 am

The book is on sale in the John Clare Cottage and Annakin for £7.50 each.


Shirley Martin December 21, 2017 at 1:34 pm

Thank you very much for your help – I have now received a copy of Frieda’s book.

Sorry, to trouble you again but I was interested in looking at the Enclosure Award which is on the website but, for what ever reason, it will not open. It is telling me it cannot open the Botolph’s Barn website. I can open all the other articles so I am not sure what the problem is.


Roy Hinchliff December 22, 2017 at 10:52 am

Sorry Shirley, I will look into it. I can confirm that the Botolph’s Barn website no longer exists as a separate entity. I am not sure about the Enclosure Map being available on line. I will let you know when I have a proper answer.
Roy Hinchliff


William Wade July 14, 2018 at 1:19 pm

Dear Roy.
From 1958 to 1964 I used to go to a little private school in Helpston which was run by a Mrs Garfoot-Gardner and was wondering if there anyone remembers her and the school. Bessie as we called her (but not to her face) was something of a local historian and a real “character”.
I have fond memories of being taken on nature walks and later of roaming freely around Helpston and the surrounding countryside at lunch times.
I have a couple of photographs, one of pupils of the school at the grave of John Clare and another of my parents disguised as gypsies at the 1964 John Clare Festival at Helpston.
Kind Regards, William Wade.


Roy Hinchliff July 14, 2018 at 1:58 pm

Dear William,
Thank you for your comment, which I hope will jog someone’s memory.
Roy Hinchliff


Lesley Hetherington September 13, 2018 at 1:05 pm

Good afternoon.
I wonder if you would be so kind to display some posters and leaflets within your village hall relating to our Free services.
Care-Network is a small charitable organisation, which was established in Cambridgeshire over 30 years ago by a vicars wife. She identified a number of vulnerable adults, being discharged from hospital without any ongoing support and introduced the Help at Home Service. We are now replicating this service in Peterborough and surrounding areas, it is totally FREE on a short term basis to anyone over the age of 18, who is suffering an illness, been discharged from hospital or, feeling isolated. Our service provides practical, emotional support, such as collecting some shopping, prescription or befriending. We desperately need volunteers in these surrounding areas, who can spare an hour or two a week, giving something back to the local community. Can I please send you some of our literature to share with the many groups that use your facilities, such as the luncheon club, indoor bowls and lawn tennis club, in a hope some of these members may have an interest in volunteering for us.
Kind regards
Mrs Lesley Hetherington
Peterborough Coordinator
Tel: 07535 288755
Tel: 01954 774800


Hilary Dunning May 13, 2019 at 7:41 am

I see you have a car boot sale at your gala, is it to late to book a table and if not how do I do this.
Regards Hilary


Roy Hinchliff May 13, 2019 at 12:20 pm

Hi Hilary, thank you for contacting the website but I am sorry to inform you that there is no car boot sale at Helpston Gala. If anything about the publicity gave you the impression that there was, I can only apologise on the organiser’s behalf. There will be a bric-a-brac stall selling stuff that villagers have donated, but the organisers are not looking to invite vendors in competition to their own stall. You are welcome to come and buy, however. The Gala starts at 12 noon on Saturday.
Roy Hinchliff, website admin


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