Beiderbecke’s meeting report

Scarborough 41 Club meeting – Thursday 13 September 2012 – Beiderbecke’s Hotel

Following the summer recess, the first meeting of Chairman Frank’s second term of office was held in the familiar surroundings of Beiderbecke’s Hotel. It was a pleasure to be joined by members of Scarborough Round Table 88, albeit in an extremely casually dressed manner. Chairman McCann, who looked as though he had just left work in a cow byre, tried to explain his misunderstanding of the word ‘casual’ – although frankly in my experience I’ve never seen him look so smart.

Following a unique version of grace from Ed Nesley, we enjoyed a stuffed chicken main course, during which Simon Lockley explained to anyone who would listen (and many who wouldn’t) why Peter Calow was now known internationally as ‘Bunny Boy’. For anyone who doesn’t understand this, I refer them to a recent article in the Scarborough News. Our pear and almond tart dessert was, for some, unknowingly and apparently unappreciatively further seasoned to taste.

Our guest speaker for the evening was Gareth Edwards [are we sure about his surname? – Wed Dev] – not, however, the former Welsh scrum-half wizard, but the Head of Communications at York Potash. Gareth very expertly and eloquently described the developing project to mine for potash on the North York Moors, roughly between Sleights and Robin Hoods Bay. We learnt that potash is a source of potassium which, along with nitrogen and phosphorus, is a key requirement for plant growth and therefore an essential component of fertilisers. The area to be mined would access the world’s largest potash deposits, with shafts being drilled down to 1500 metres. The extracted potash would be crushed and transported via an underground pipeline to Teesside for processing and distribution. Most of the mining works are planned to be built below ground level, therefore minimising the effect on the local environment, and workings above ground will be screened behind woodland and cunningly disguised as farm buildings. With production anticipated to commence in 2016/7, the benefits of the project for the local community would include upward of 1000 direct jobs, apprenticeships and graduate recruitment prospects, a significant input to the local economy, and the establishment of the York Potash Foundation, a local community fund to benefit from 0.5% of annual revenue.

Following his informative presentation and a question and answer session (during which Franklyn Garvey demonstrated a remarkable knowledge of local fauna), a vote of thanks was extended to Gareth from Jim Hughes.

Committee reports were mercifully brief, although Dave Henderson quite rightly received tumultuous applause for his sterling efforts in setting up the superb new 41 Club website. As Table chairman, Jim ‘Sartorial’ McCann offered his thanks to 41 Club for inviting Round Table to the meeting, adding that he hoped there would be further joint meetings ahead.

The meeting concluded with a toast to RTBI.

Gordon Hayes


Image of Bix courtesy Wikipedia

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