Sunday, 13 March 2011


After the last blog writing of my friend Angie's thoughts on the Earthquake I began to wonder whatever could I write ...Things around here seem so trivial ..However perhaps a bit of trivia is what we need after all the hours of watching the developing disaster in Japan.

The week my wee village of Box has come is so full of colour..There are daffodils everywhere one looks. In gardens, and on the roadsides even some on the roundabouts..My willow buds have now turned fluffy and golden with pollen..just ready for the bees that have started to buzz around, they especially enjoy the bed of heather I have near the I think you can say that I am HAPPY to see the spring arrive..   Something that I found out the other day and I am not sure if you will find it very interesting but if you are interested in history and history of our little village you will find some details here

1867 The Free Methodist Chapel was built by Box Methodists to attempt to combat the 'riotous' lifestyle enjoyed by many quarrymen living on Box Hill   (Now closed when it joined the village Methodist Church)

1870 Box Cricket Club was founded  (and is still one of the best cricket grounds in the area I can see it from my small deck during the playing season, This week they have started rolling the grass etc.)

1875 Box Church of England School was built ( This is a wonderful school and gets excellent results)

1881 In the 1881 census, Ditteridge was listed as having a population of 101

1895 The new parish council takes over the operation of the Fire Brigade  (no longer in use)

1896 The Methodist Chapel and Hall were built, mainly by members of the congregation (this is where I am a member)

Late 1800s By the end of the 19th century, there were nearly 700 quarry workers in the parish as the quarrying industry flourished

1907 The Roman Villa was excavated by Sir Harold Brakspeare. The findings were not unique, but showed a once extensive dwelling

1915 Ridge Quarry was temporarily converted into an arsenal for the duration of World War One

1951 The population of Box reached its peak at 4,581 residents

1920-1925 Restorations and enlargements were carried out at Hazelbury Manor for the owner,

G.J. Kidston, by Sir Harold Brakspear

1922 Box school became a mixed school of 212 pupils

1923 The village war memorial was erected following the First World War on Bear Green

1926 The recreation ground was built  (this is the Rec. that I overlook and it is wonderful)

1943 The Cemetery was extended into an area that became known as the New Cemetery

C.1945 Following an urgent need for more housing after the Second World War, the 'Fete Field' (which was once used for outdoor social activities) was used to build the Bargates Estate

1957 The Rising Sun, a public house, was tragically destroyed in an explosion, killing the licensee and his family

1960 The public house 'The Lamb' was closed

1967-1968 Another excavation of the Roman Villa was carried out by Henry Hurst and revealed alterations made to the villa and its outbuildings

1968 Clift Mine was closed

1969 The remaining quarries were closed   (Now just a few months ago it was reopened)

1969 Selwyn Hall, the village hall, was built

1970 Bingham Hall, the building where indoor social activities used to place, was demolished (its function being replaced by Selwyn Hall)

1978 The parish council bought the land at the Box Common to manage it on behalf of the people

1986-1988 Peter Gabriel, formerly of the rock band Genesis, launched his own record label, 'Real World Studios' in a converted mill

1992 The organ at St. Christopher's Church, Ditteridge, was rebuilt

1998 The 'Lovar' water garden was built from former wasteland on the northern perimeter of the recreation ground  (this is also the village dog walk and in the summer I sometimes take Dee along for a walk there is a lovely pond there where we can see the dragonflies, wonderful yellow Iris and water lilies)

2001 The 2001 census recorded Box's population as 3,439 people

2004 The people of Box could finally access the Internet through a broadband connection

I actually found details way back to almost neolithic days and some other time I may take you even further back in village times...

Today has been one of ups and downs.  We had a good church service and afterwards Sarah felt well enough to come out for dinner. Peter went and collected her and we met at the Bear a very old village pub. They do a wonderful Sunday Roast.  Sarah and I can only manage a child's portion ! but Peter makes up for us have a LARGE portion..and then also manages to finish what Sarah has left !!  Peter and I had roast beef which is done to a turn it is served with all roasted vegetables, carrot, swede, sweet potato,beetroot, and also fresh spring beans of course Yorkshire pud. and roast potato It was a very delicious lunch. Sarah and I had a cherry and apple flan between us for afters and Peter had trifle..No wonder I fell asleep when I came home !!!  That was certainly an UP part of the day next came the DOWN part my oldest sister Margaret had not been at all well for a few weeks now and has been waiting hospital appointments. Today she had one for her heart and unfortunately the results were not good and consequently they admitted her to the hospital.  We do not yet know what the diagnoses is. she has CPOD like Sarah but her symptoms have always been different but although her breathing has not been as acute as Sarah's I think that perhapss the time has come for her to need oxygen as well.she has such a very very bad cough that I am sure that has put a strain on her heart.  I am just waiting for Mitch my BIL to phone to give me an update..if he is not too tired when he gets back....I would sure appreciate your prayers for Margaret and Mitch at this time. Thank You.
I am praying that you are all enjoying some spring weather.
Love to you all..... and never forget to say to all your loved ones how much you love them.  I know that we think they should know that without us having to say it, but is sounds all the better when you actually say it out loud....
Love Sybil x


  1. Sybil I was so happy when I saw that you had posted and was excited reading about your flowers. When I got to the part about Margaret I just felt so sad. I of course will pray for all of you. Please keep me updated on Margaret's condition.
    Where is she in the hospital. Is it close to you?
    Know my friend that I think of you everyday and I pray Margaret is home soon.
    Take care of yourself too. I love you

  2. Glad you had a good day today. We have spring blooming here too. Daffodils and all the early spring blooms! So exciting. It's going to be really pretty here in a few days!

    Have a great week yourself.

  3. sorry about sister,hope all goes love mort xx

  4. Your sister and her husband will be in my prayers. If I remember right they do not live close by to you so that will make it a bit difficult for you too. We are not seeing many signs of Spring yet but this week it is to warm up and I'm sure that we'll be seeing more soon. It seems a very long and harsh winter here, but like you say it is so trivial compared to those suffering the affects of the earthquake in Japan. Sometimes we forget what a blessing it is to have just ordinary everyday lives. Your meal does sound like a feast. I'd be having the childrena portion too with all that food. Glad you had a good day there! LOLAH!

  5. Oh Sibs, know that I will be praying for Margaret and Mitch, and you and Sarah, too. As we get older, it seems that our family and friends, as well as ourselves, are always battling medical conditions. We just need to remember to be thankful for what we do have, and you are good at that, Sybs, you always seem to have such a positive attitude. Take care, dear friend.

  6. When your page opened my first thought was "how beautiful!" Spring is making itself known here as well. I have purple crocus in my front yard and they are in bloom.

    I am sorry to hear of your sister Margaret's health troubles and I will include her and you in my prayers. I so agree with you that it is important to remember to say "I love you" to those whom we love It can never be said too often.

    take care, dear Sybil, you are a bright spot in my world.

  7. I am glad that spring is showing up in Box. Thanks for all the info on your little part of the world. I wish that I could visit there one day. It must be nice to live in a small city with only 3,000+ people. I bet you rarely have traffic jams or long waits in line.
    We had 3000 students in the high school where I taught. ... and it is only 1 of the 7 high schools we have in town. I am afraid that we have crowds and traffic everywhere we go. Maybe we should move to Box.

    I will surely add Margaret and Mitch to my prayers. Let us know what the diagnosis is when you get it.
    Hugs, Lura

  8. Sybil, thanks so much for sharing all that lovely history of Box! I am glad that spring is springing. The sun is shining here again today. I do love it when the sun shines! Your Sunday lunch sounds wonderful I, too, will keep Margaret and Mitch in my prayers. Keep us up to date with it all, please! I always love catching up with your goings on Sybil. It is just like having a sweet visit with a good friend. I send lots of love and hugs to you today, and always,
    Marie xx

  9. Sybil, I love the beautiful spring flower photo you have used on your header.
    Thanks too for the history of Box.
    I'm sorry to read about Margaret and hope that she will soon be back home again where she belongs. I will keep you all in my prayers my lovely friend.
    Please give Sarah my good wishes. I'm so glad she is getting out and about again. I wish the same for your Margaret too.
    Love always
    Jeanie xxxxxx

  10. Thanks for the histroical info;praying for magaret and Mitch.

  11. Just wanted to come by and say hello and to check on Margaret.
    Please keep me updated on you guys and how your doing.
    Love ya

  12. Hello again,
    How are Margaret and Mitch?

  13. Hi Sybil,
    How are Margaret and Mitch?
    I hope all is well.

    Big Hugs


  14. Sybil honey I am getting really worried about you and Margaret....let me know if you are okay.
    Love ya

  15. Hi, Sybil. It certainly seems that Spring has arrived at your village. I adore history so I loved the facts you wrote about the area. When was Box founded as a village? Does it go back before the 1800's (not counting the Roman excavations!)?

    I am sorry to hear of Margaret's condition and am praying for her and hoping you will update us about her. However, I am happy Sarah was well enough to go out with you after church. Please let me know how she is.

    Wishing you sunlight and flowers, friend!