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SV TV meets Helen Gasparelli, MAPS manager at the Sutton Volunteer Centre

SV TV’s Hannah Jackson meets Helen Gasparelli, MAPS manager at the Sutton Volunteer Centre, about how many young people they’ve helped so far, the amount in social value the organisation has generated, the funding they’ve been awarded by the Big Lottery Fund Reaching Communities and how MAPS is the Queen’s favourite mentoring programme Continue reading SV TV meets Helen Gasparelli, MAPS manager at the Sutton Volunteer Centre

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Sutton United involved in World War 1 key event programme

Sutton United’s Community Team at the Club is involved in a programme supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund to commemorate key events of World War 1. In 2016 it will be the battle of the Somme, perhaps the most horrific of all battles in that War.

The Team are also working on a pilot project to increase awareness of Commonwealth War Graves working with the Big Ideas Company who have been commissioned to manage the pilot programme.
Before the game on Saturday against Hayes & Yeading FC, the new Club Chaplain Leonard Fom gave a short address to commemorate Remembrance Day. This was followed by the playing of the Last Post by Karl Charity and the lowering of the flag of the local British Legion branch who also attended the game and sold poppies.

Five Sutton United players were killed during WW1 and the Community Officer Rob Hardy is completing a project to find out about those players and their backgrounds with colleagues at the Club. The 5 were: –

Albert Shrubsole, S Trendall, C Smith, William Shrubsole, H Weston.

Some of the men and women buried in Commonwealth War graves in the Borough include the following in St Dunstan Churchyard, the nearest to the Club’s ground. Cllr Simon Wales Deputy Leader of LB Sutton read out the names.

Arthur Beynon (31) Sergeant Air Gunner RAF, Fred Horton (28) Private East Surrey Regiment, John Gay (20) Second Officer Merchant Navy.

Dave Farebrother, chairman of the board of directors, commented on how well the ceremony had been received. “People came out of the bars early and observed the ceremony in silence with great decorum and respect. It was quite a moving experience and I’d like to thank everyone who worked hard to make it happen.”

Cllr Simon Wales, Deputy Leader of LB Sutton, commented, “Remembering the past, and learning from the mistakes of the past, is what makes the world a better place. I am very honoured to have played a small part in this act of remembrance”.

In order to utilise the information collected, a local studies module is being developed by the Community Team for use by local schools to use as part of their National Curriculum Studies. A section on World War 1 and 2 will be included as well focusing on other key issues from the Club’s history and current issues.

For further information contact Rob Hardy Community Officer at /01403 272949

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Can you spot a relative from Sutton’s glass plate negatives?

Sutton residents are being invited to go online and see if they can spot any of their relatives from World War I in an amazing collection of Edwardian and pre-war photographic glass-plate negatives.

Run by Sutton Council’s Archives Service, the Sutton Archives project, can be seen here and here. It is an astonishing collection of more than 10,000 glass-plate negatives by local photographer David Knights-Whittome, who owned shops in Sutton and Epsom from around 1904 until 1918, that was rescued from the basement of a high-street shop, having been untouched for 100 years, that is now stored at Sutton Library.

The collection contains hundreds – or perhaps thousands – of WW1 soldiers in uniform, a lost generation of men and boys who either lived in the area or were stationed locally before their postings. Work to date has already uncovered images of a number of men whose names are listed on local war memorials.

The Sutton Archives project has had some really positive reactions to its research. On seeing the image of Private George Leonard Ingram of the 25th Battalion (Tyneside Irish), Northumberland Fusiliers, his family contacted the Archives project and said:

“Thank you for posting this. George is my maternal grandfather. My mother, Nora (known as May) sadly died three years ago, aged 96. She would have been so pleased to have seen your blog.”

Cllr Jill Whitehead, Chair of the Environment and Neighbourhoods Committee at Sutton Council, said:

“The Sutton Archives is an extraordinary historical record of local and national importance. Finding these plate-glass negatives must have been like discovering Egyptian King Tutankhamen’s tomb in the Valley of the Kings as the riches of history are etched upon them.

“We hope that Sutton residents will visit the archives project online and see if they recognise a great, great, great grandfather or grandmother, uncles and aunts, and relatives who lost their lives in the Great War but whose images have been captured for posterity by David Knights-Whittome a century ago.”

In March 2014 Sutton Archives was awarded £95,900 by the Heritage Lottery Fund to enable the cleaning, digitisation, research and cataloguing of the vast collection of glass-plate negatives.

Work began last December and around 3,500 plates have been cleaned, rehoused, digitised and catalogued. More than 200 of the individuals depicted have been researched. The work is largely done by a team of dedicated volunteers who have put more than 1,200 hours of their own time into rescuing and rediscovering this material. Without their help, it would be impossible to make the material available.

As well as documenting thousands of local residents, the glass-plate photographs depict local and regional schools, colleges and theatre groups, social events such as weddings and house parties, grand country houses and other institutions from across the UK and the Continent.

David Knights-Whittome also held a Royal Warrant and photographed the Royal family, including Edward VII, George V and Edward VIII, in formal portraits and at house parties. He also photographed royalty in Portugal and Copenhagen.

Anyone interested in volunteering for the project should contact Project Officer Abby Matthews at or phone 020 8770 4746.

Private Harold Dickman Mims of the 4th Battalion, Dorset Regiment lived at Bosworth, Egmont Road, Sutton and was killed in action on 27 September 1918, at the age of 22. Harold is buried in Sains-Les-Marquion British Cemetery and is commemorated on the Sutton War Memorial.