War Memorial Gary Trouton


February 2009

Les looks into his crystal ball to consider the future of The Village Pump

Last month I took a nostalgic look back to yesteryear but I must confess that tomorrow appeals to me more. As we move in to another year I wonder what 2009 will not only bring us but also the villages we live in as well.

Our Village Pump has always appealed to me if for no other reason that, although it may well be "based" in Stoke Ferry, it incorporates 5 other villages as well. And, in addition it charges 50p per issue. Those two points are to me of some interest. By that I mean should the Pump wish to expand in the years to come the foundations are already in place. All of that is in stark contrast to some other villages who's newsletters serve only their own village and some are indeed free. This is something which leaves me speechless; some thing for nothing? Thank you, but no, not in my book. What I'm saying is that our Pump can if it wishes go places; these other newsletters can't because they have no where to go. They are captive with-in their own environment.

Still staying with our Pump, consider its content and I go back to the Contributor who supplied us with some lessons in Algebra sometime ago. This was a subject which always "knocks me sideways" which isn't such a surprise considering I left Methwold Primary School just before I was aged 14. I could hardly say my education was complete. However in spite of my advancing years, I am fast approaching 80, Adult Education is something which if I had my way I would make compulsory. What is wrong with learning today something you didn't know yesterday?

So some more lessons in Algebra in our Village Pump then; well why not we might all learn something. After all, whether anyone learns anything from my regular contributions may well be open to question, but then I guess diversity is the name of the game and I would have thought the more our Pump diversifies all to the good.

If I were to use just one word to summarize all I am saying I would chose the word Centralisation. As I have said our Pump is centred on Stoke Ferry. If we now accept that far from bringing our "Debate" to a close we have in reality only just started. My mind immediately goes to Methwold High School which is centred on of course Methwold, but more importantly, reaches out to draw in pupils from the surrounding area. Therefore in my view there is a correlation, (no I don't know what the word means either, my excuse is a limited education, what's yours?) between our Pump and the High School. Both are in a position to expand and "move forward" if they so wish and make no mistake that is precisely what the High School will do because standing still is not an option, you either go forward or backwards.

So far I have only touched on two subjects, our Pump and the High School. There are many more I could have mentioned: Primary Schools, Methodists Chapels, Village Pubs, Shops, Post Offices, etc. All have been sold or closed and if you wanted one word to explain why, well you could do worse than chose Centralisation, that's a word that's here to stay, like it or not.

I have a feeling that some may well say I have travelled down this road before and if that's the case I make no apology for doing so. If you have a point of view which you consider has some substance then in my view why shouldn't you repeat it. It could be said that some of you may regard reading this as an education, others may take the view it's been a waste of time. Well didn't I suggest our Pump should be a vehicle of diversity, and of course I had its readers very much in mind as well.

Les Lawrence


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