Monthly Archives: March 2019


The meeting opened at 1030 a.m. with Chairman Michael Cochrane advising of three apologies. He also told members that Ken Burcher (now into his 90’s) is living with his son in Suffolk and will probably not attend again and we wish him well. It was a pleasure to see Tom Snelling’s grandson attend as a guest again.

Under “Initial Notices” John Taylor informed  members about the Spring Lunch at Hollins Hall on Tuesday May 7th 2019–paperwork and menu choices made available. Menu choices and full payment to be made to John Taylor no later than Tuesday April 16th with the caveat that there is a limit on numbers of forty.

The third call for the A.G.M.  regarding proposals and nominations was made and a list of Officer vacancies displayed.

Today’s Speaker was the Forum’s own His Honour Judge Derek Clarkson Q.C. with his topic being “The Lighter Side of the Law”. For the next hour members were regally entertained and instructed by recollections and anecdotes from the legal world. He started his talk by advising that it had been pointed out that the Courts of Law provide the “… best free entertainment there is” encompassing all forms of theatre albeit with a serious front,. Derek told us about Justice Charles John Darling, a 19th century and early 20th century legal figure, who introduced appropriate jokes into his trials. We were told about the Muslim witness who took an oath to “…. to tell anything but the truth” and the young girl aged nine who addressed the Judge as “Your Majesty”!! Length of jury service and jurors provided a source of amusing memories as did the story of the forty-two year old promiscuous  farm labourer. Hearing issues; falling asleep in court; pomposity and sometimes unpleasantness all provided their lighter legal moments and clever and witty interchanges between Judges, Barristers and Defendants also promoted light relief into the serious business of the legal process.

There were a few tales of pranks being played on each other by Barristers and Judges in trains and hotels which showed the human face of these imposing figures!!

The audience, as usual, had enjoyed the morning’s reminisces with questions and comments at the end. Richard Wright gave an amusing and appreciated Vote of Thanks on behalf of the forty-one attendees.




Chairman Michael Cochrane opened the meeting at 1030 a.m. advising of five apologies.

Under “Initial Notices” Neil Ramshaw General Secretary gave the second call for the April 30th A.G.M. and stressed the urgent need for members to come forward to fill the vacant Officer positions.

Terry Byrne advised members that he would be doing his A.E.D. talk on April 11th and 15th respectively at the Green Hut starting at 730 p.m.

Today’s Speaker was Mr Jeff Jacklin who had spent thirty years in the N.H.S. at Director level both in permanent and interim roles. His talk “N.H.S.: It Only Hurts When I Laugh” was positioned to both educate and amuse.

He started by sharing some impressive statistics on the N.H.S. which illustrated its enormous size and scale, being the biggest employer in this country and the fourth biggest in the world with 1.38 million employees. The strength of the N.H.S. was predicated on three things namely its Volunteer Base, Foreign Nurses and Doctors and the Goodwill of the Public. An interesting issue arising from surveys he had carried out was that the main issue of complaints (a remarkably small total overall) was Hospital Car Parking.

Jeff talked about the establishment of the N.H.S. in 1947/ 1948 and the bleak situation that preceded its creation particularly for the many citizens who didn’t have the financial resilience to pay for healthcare in times when there was no public healthcare provision in place. The N.H.S.’s main features would be cradle to grave provision; all pay and all benefit and free services at the point of delivery. There were some negative views to overcome from rich people, doctors and the general public itself and these were addressed by Aneurin Bevan the Labour Minister for Health.

Jeff then took his audience through some milestone dates from 1948–1998 which included the birth of the N.H.S. ; Prescription Charges being introduced, cancelled and reintroduced; Polio and Diphtheria Vaccination Programmes to the launch of N.H.S. Direct.

To conclude his talk we were shown the vast amount of paper involved in Patients Medical Records and the need to computerize. Finally some Medical Bloopers brought an amusing finish.

The talk was well supported by slides and video clips and enjoyed by members  as evidenced by comments and questions raised.

The Vote of Thanks on behalf of thirty-five attendees was given by Edward Rowe.





Chairman Michael Cochrane opened the meeting at 10 30 a.m. advising of four apologies. He welcomed the guests, particularly the ladies, to this Open Meeting which would be the final Ray Coggan Memorial Meeting.

Under Initial Notices General Secretary Neil Ramshaw gave notice of the A.G.M. on 30th April 2019 with any proposals, motions for discussion to be provided to him by April 23rd latest. He pointed out the number of offices that will need to be filled going forward into next season and asked members to seriously consider stepping forward as individuals or possibly in pairs to fill said vacancies— more discussion at future meetings.

Today’s Speakers were Mr Clive and Mrs Kath Richardson whose talk was intriguingly titled “The Woman Who Didn’t Exist”!!

The joint presentation focussed on a Margaret Burns who was born in 1889 at Whitehaven Cumbria to an ordinary working class family–her father Jacob was a Coal Hewer– and domestic moves to the Durham Coalfield Areas took place early in her life. The story was sad, poignant, dramatic but true and involved a surprising twist at the end. It followed her growing up, losing her mother at the age of four, her father’s remarriage and Margaret’s move into employment as a nursing assistant at the age of sixteen determined not to follow a life of domestic drudgery. However she met her first husband miner John George Purvis, became pregnant, married and started producing babies at regular intervals. The tale then moved onto tragic events in World War One, more babies, death on service, eviction, abandonment and a second dysfunctional marriage. The scene then moved to Manchester with bigamy rearing its head and then a period of domestic stability and the final denouement  of “How The Woman Who Didn’t Exist” became so titled and who died in 1962.

A surprising unexpected twist concluded the talk which was supported by slides and presented in a lively, entertaining and amusing manner.

A number of questions/ comments came from the audience at the end and the Vote of Thanks on behalf of thirty two members and eleven guests, mainly ladies, was given by Richard Brooks.





The meeting was opened at 1030 a.m. with Chairman Michael Cochrane advising of two apologies. Richard Wright’s apology was accompanied by news that he was out of hospital and making good progress which we were pleased to hear. Chairman Mike also advised that the places for Member’s Morning were now filled with thanks to those that had come forward.

Today’s Speaker was our very own Member Edward Rowe with his topic being “Bye Bye The Neighbourhood”. He started by advising of him observing a citizenship ceremony and testing this morning’s audience with three of the questions participants were expected to know.

Edward comes from Scarborough and out of a fishing family background. The first part of his talk focussed on the town’s origins visited in around 966 A.D. by Skarthi ,a Viking raider with the settlement being called Skaroaborg. There had been briefly a Roman Signal Station on the headland in the 4th century and possibly earlier Stone and Bronze Age settlements. The new settlement was burned to the ground by a rival band of Vikings under Tostig who subsequently was defeated at the Battle of Stamford Bridge in 1066. The destruction meant very little remained to be recorded in the Domesday Survey of 1085.

Edward then moved on to the second part of his talk by advancing to the outbreak of the First World War at which time his grandfather was a freelance skipper of a fishing trawler. We heard about the decimation of the Scarborough Fishing Fleet and the role of U Boat 57 which sank eleven Scarborough trawlers (and eight from other ports!) in September 1916. The U Boat Commander Ritter Karl Siegfried Von George ensured there was no loss of life, transporting crew off the various trawlers, before their sinking mainly by artillery fire. Edward commented on the amount of submarine activity off the Yorkshire coast and the bombardment of locations like Scarborough.

On May 15 1917 a Filey Coble “The Edith Cavell” was also sunk by a German U Boat with the crew having again being removed before the sinking. The talk concluded with mention of the landslip which caused the loss of Holbeck Hall Hotel.

A number of questions and comments were fielded and the Vote of Thanks on behalf of the thirty seven attendees was given by Vincent Naylor.