News and Events

2017 Annual Report and minutes of AGM

May 2017
HPCA Ltd Annual Report April 1st 2016 to March 31st 2017

Unsurprisingly it has been a satisfyingly uneventful year.   The last thing we want is to have a memorably eventful year, because, as a rule, memorably eventful years are memorable for all the wrong reasons.   All we hope for is that the brambles are kept cut back from overhanging the paths, that the bases of the mature trees can be walked round and free from the invading tendrils of brambles, that the place is as free of litter as is humanly achievable, that the grass is mown when the grass needs to be mown and heaved onto the ripe pile of cuttings which is now such a rich heap of compost we should be bagging it and selling it on.

For a variety of reasons the flower meadow wasn’t cut so often last year, and there was a concern that it would be worrisome, but consultation with Pensthorpe, who have richly flowering meadows, informed us that they never cut their meadows so we should not be concerned.

Grumbling in the distance continues the predictable rumble of development on the Riverside Development.   Drawings have been produced which hint at nearby encroachment, but nothing is concrete (pun intentional). Despite calls for the bus lane to be opened up to all traffic, this remains unlikely.   There were rumours that the pinch point on the sluice have been resolved, we are reliably informed that they remain comfortably out of reach of greedy hands and there is no immediate prospect that the bus lane will be anything more than a bus lane.   We do need to stay aware of any plans which include Harding’s Way.

Under an initiative by Keep Britain Tidy, the Great British Spring Clean was proposed for March, the first work party of the year was devoted to a massive litter pick.   The growth was minimal from the winter, so 12 bags were filled to bursting.   T’Pits remains a draw for cans, bottles, soiled nappies and general paper/plastic litter.   Occasionally we see a discarded bike or a buggy, some shoplifted contraband, or homework.   Sadly we also see bags of clothes which have been left for charity shops, stolen, opened and rummaged through then discarded.   After Guy Fawkes Night and New Years Eve we see the remains of celebrations held, which reminds us that people see t’Pits as a focal point for events in their lives, possibly because they haven’t such an amenity close at hand, something the council should note, that without t’Pits people would be very much the poorer.

Tributes are deserved to the hardy hearty band of volunteers who keep the whole thing going.   Without the reliability of committed volunteers who: keep the machines working, keep the work parties fed & watered, keep the litter down, cut, slash, rake, and go out of their way all through the year to depart from their ordinary routine to join in keeping Harding’s Pits as a much loved, much needed, maintained community resource.   To all who help us in their time and effort, thanks, thanks, and thanks, again, must be due.

Jane Dearling
24th May 2017


Hardings Pits Community Association Ltd Minutes of AGM 24th May 2017

The AGM of HPCA took place at the Live and Let Live King’s Lynn on 24th May 2017 started at 6.33pm.

Present were; Jane and Jeremy Dearling, Rick Morrish, Sally Turff, John Loveless, Phil Avery, Margaret Worledge, Mike Nobbs, Rob Archer, Hugh Rout.

Apologies from; Sue Nulty, Andrew & Lesley Stevenson, Pat Nobbs, Vicky Fairweather

Minutes of the AGM held on 18th May 2016 were received, proposed by Jeremy Dearling & seconded by Rob Archer & accepted unanimously.

The Treasurer’s report was received, proposed by Rick Morrish seconded by Sally Turff & accepted unanimously.

All existing directors & members of management group, were willing to continue. In addition to the existing directors, others were nominated and agreed to serve.   The list of directors now consists of; Jane Dearling – Chairman, Rick Morrish – Vice Chairman, Jeremy Dearling, John Loveless, Sally Turff, Hugh Rout, Rob Archer.
HPCA Ltd Management Group
Margaret Worledge –Treasurer HPCA Ltd
Phil Avery agreed to join the committee
Mike Nobbs – Company Secretary HPCA Ltd
Jeremy Dearling acted as Minute Secretary
The AGM closed at 7pm

In addition to the routine business of the AGM, the following actions were undertaken by some present;
1. Jane Dearling to approach Carol Tupper with a view of asking her to become a director.
2. Rick Morrish to ask Norfolk County Council for help with patching up the paths.
3. John Loveless to ask his son for help obtaining wood to repair the trailer floor.
4. Mike Nobbs to buy pitchforks and hay rakes.
5. Mike Nobbs to seek a buyer for the hay turner and the old tractor box.
6. Rick Morrish to investigate repairs to the whale shelter.



May 2017

Seated on his plane at Dubrovnik Airport, HPCA secretary Mike Nobbs glanced out of the window and there, trundling towards him across the airport apron was Ulysses, the Pits’ mighty workhorse.

Not Ulysses as we all know and love him — but a gleaming, polished Ulysses, resplendent in a coat of ochre paint.   Had Mike pre-loaded with rather too much Raki for the journey home?   Had Ulysses come to haunt him for abandoning his post at the Pits’ workshop for a hedonistic summer trip?   Was this a reminder of grass to be cut, brambles hacked back?

As the pilot announced take-off Mike took another look, just to be certain, and there sure enough was a Ulysses.   But this one had a more public role, towing the trailer of suitcases from departure lounge to aircraft hold.

Croatia is a country where a Ulysses is properly regarded — maintained in smart livery, contributing to aeronautical efficiency and a tribute to the tourist trade.

Mike cares devoutly for the Pits’ Ulysses.   Ensures he has all he needs to operate smoothly in all the tasks he has to perform and never over-works him.   Wraps him up securely against rain and tempest.   Guards him well, with theft-proof paint on the perimeter fences of his compound and heavy locks and chains at the entry points.

Now vigilance is going to have to be redoubled, lest Croatian thieves should seek him out.

Only Mike and co-pilot Hugh are allowed to drive Ulysses, who celebrated his 60th birthday last year — but he can be viewed on the last Saturday of the month at one of the HPCA workdays.   All are welcome to join in the rest of the work — and then enjoy a convivial lunch.

Some may even be allowed to sit on Ulysses…


Pink is Helping the Green

May 2017

The shocking pink wheelbarrow, donated a year ago may look girly, but it is proving to be a strong workhorse indeed.

Pink Wheelbarrow1
Jane Dearling, HPCA chairman and Laura Basola with the new pink wheelbarrow, which contains Thomas Archer one of the younger volunteers.

The barrow was given to the Harding’s Pits Community Association (HPCA) by Lynn resident Laura Basola in memory of her parents and because she so enjoys the community green beside the river.   As soon as it was given the barrow was put to good use taking away brambles which had been cut that morning — and it has been carting all manner vegetation and other waste ever since.

“We chose bright pink originally because we already had a bright pink pitchfork and the two complemented one another perfectly,” explained Jane Dearling, HPCA chairman.   “The colour started as a bit of a joke because so many of our volunteers are women.   But in fact it’s very practical, the vivid shade makes it much less likely to get mislaid, which is all too easy because of the dense growth on the green.

Pink Wheelbarrow2
HPCA volunteers with Laura Basola (far right) and the new pink wheelbarrow in which Thomas Archer one of the younger volunteers is seated.

“As a result we’ve bought more bright pink tools.”

“I love to walk on the Pits, listening to the birds, watching the wildlife — just enjoying the environment and the lovely atmosphere there,” said Laura.   “It is a very special place.   When I wanted to do something in memory of my parents giving to the Green was so appropriate.   HPCA suggested the wheelbarrow.”

“We are very grateful to Laura — and delighted that she enjoys the Pits so much.   That is what the Green is all about,” says Jane.

Once a month HPCA holds a workday when volunteers come along to cut back growth along the verges of the paths, collect litter and generally keep the site tidy — but not manicured.   A long morning’s toil is followed by a congenial lunch, something which Laura much appreciated too.   “I did so enjoy sitting in the sun, surrounded by all the greenery,” she said.

Full details of our workdays to which all are welcome can be found on our workdays page.


Maurice Worledge

February 2017

Maurice Worledge, one of our first members and husband of our Treasurer, Margaret, died peacefully in January. He was a gentle, generous, multi-skilled, very good-hearted and kind man who took a keen interest in Harding’s Pits from the very beginning. He made a point of video recording the changing seasons on the Pits, while his expertise in mending and making, stemming from his long farming career, proved invaluable in maintaining the Pits’ equipment, hay rakes especially. He is very much missed by all who knew him.


Rainbow over Roger’s seat

October 2016

No reason for this picture, except that it is so lovely — and wouldn’t you expect there to be a golden remembrance to our Roger? Mike Nobbs, HPCA secretary was in the right place at the right time during the October workday AND had his camera to hand. A particularly lovely autumn day saw the pits at their best and our noble band of volunteers was able to tackle much of summer growth now dying back into a blackened, gloomy mess, to make all spic and span for the winter. Cutting back undergrowth Rick Morrish ‘found’ one of the walnut saplings, planted for Roger, and because it had already been pulled out once by vandals, we had supposed was gone for ever. It sprang back and looks to survive — vandals and thieves willing.