Since 2015, and with the obvious exception of 2020, either late September or early October has seen Stannington Library volunteers deliver an event to mark the anniversary of volunteers assuming management responsibility for the library.
From the humblest of beginnings in 2015, the festival had built to a multi-day event in 2019, when the highlight was without doubt the spectacular music and fire-dance performance by Mister Fox. Those who saw it have still not forgotten it
After an enforced gap in 2020, the festival returned last year and celebrated Stonehenge, the Storrs Henge installation in the Stoneface Woodland Gallery and various cardboard-box structures on the theme Stannhenge.
“It was great to be back last year, even in such a small way,” said volunteer Bob Mynors. “This year though we are able to up our game a little thanks to the financial support we are receiving every time one of our supporters buys from the Coop and scans a Coop membership card. And there is still time for people to choose STAND, the library management charity, to be the organisation that benefits from those purchases."
2022’s event is receiving funding from the Coop’s Local Community Fund, and its theme is ‘trees’ with stories selected specifically to reflect that theme. Performers at the event will include the ever-popular Carmel Page who is not yet revealing the stories she will perform, whilst Hallam89 Theatre Club, also experienced story festival hands, will bring their interpretation of the Roald Dahl classic Fantastic Mr Fox to the show
Other attractions on the day include The Sawheads, a folk trio featuring not one but two musical saws and, all the way from Wantley Wood, the mighty dragon Hal of Hallamshire, How appropriate these last two acts will be in a festival themed round trees remains to be seen, but organisers have every confidence.
The whole event starts at 1.00 pm on Saturday 1st October, and runs till 5.00 pm.
Stannington TARA (Tenants and Residents Association) have arranged for a new weekly IT club to help boost computer skills and internet awareness. The club will be held every Thursday morning in the Hall Park Head Community Centre - 10am to 12 noon.
Hall Park Head Community Centre is located adjacent to the 82 bus terminus.
If you have your own laptop computer or your own tablet, please bring it with you if you can.
This is an activity managed and delivered by Stannington Tenants and Residents Association.
Visit the TARA website: https://bit.ly/3TzSDPQ
Find the location of Hall Park Head Community here https://bit.ly/3B4R4lH
Our grateful thanks to all who bought tickets! The winners have been contacted and their prizes are being delivered.
At Stannington Library, we will be celebrating Her Majesty the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee with two events:
* Friday 3rd June - 1.30 pm till 3.00 pm – 10 years and under
Write a story, draw a picture, make a model and share it in the library. Collect a FREE Platinum Jubilee children’s activity pack from Stannington Library next time you call in to see us. (Children must be accompanied by an adult.)
* Saturday 4th June - 2.00 pm to 4.00 pm –all ages
Join us to watch ‘A QUEEN IS CROWNED’, a feature-length film of the events of Coronation Day. Narrator: Sir Laurence Olivier Musical adviser: Sir Malcolm Sargent.
Admission is FREE at both events, but please, if you possibly can, collect tickets from the library so that we can know how many people we will be catering for – how much cake to provide. Refreshments will be provided.
All cash donations on the day will be gratefully received.
Sheffield Libraries have announced that they will no longer charge fines for books brought back late. Read more here.
We are pleased to announce that Stannington Library will also no longer charge fines for books from their own collection being returned late. Please bring back any overdue books you have, fine free, so that others can enjoy reading them.
I hope this finds you all well, and keeping both dry and upright in this very wild weather. It looks to be far more settled for when we meet again on March 1st.
What a week it has been, with 3 named storms following on so closely to each other. We think this is highly unusual, but when we look at recent meteorological records, this has happened before in February, alongside the warmest, wettest years recorded in the last 10 years. Climate change is here.
I thought it would be interesting to remind ourselves about the basis of clouds and windy weather. Forecasting has become a distinct science, but recognising some types of cloud can be both fun and useful, especially if venturing out on a spring walk or early picnic...
Firstly though, here is an image of a truly beautiful glass thermometer, made in Florence in the 17th Century, at the time of Galileo. The coloured glass balls within the tubes, which are full of water, rise and fall depending on the ambient temperature. I include it simply due to its beauty. We need more of that in life I reckon.
Aristotle devised a theory of ‘atmospheric exhalations’, but it was Luke Howard, a pharmacist and amateur meteorologist in 1802, who devised a simple classification system for clouds. The Latin names he chose are still used internationally today. He ordered them into 3 main families of cloud: Cirrus, meaning hair or fibre, Cumulus, meaning pile or heap, and Stratus, meaning layer or sheet. Constable painted a series of 100 cloud studies, all aided by his annotated copy of Howard’s original classification of clouds.
A brief summary of the First International Cloud Atlas of 1896:
A. Upper Clouds, average altitude of 29,500ft: Cirrus and Cirro-stratus
B. Intermediate Clouds, average altitude of 9.840 to 23,000ft: Cirro- cumulus, Alto-cumulus and Alto-stratus
C. Lower Clouds, average altitude of 6,500ft: Strato-cumulus and Nimbus.
This has been augmented over time, so we now have 14 species and 9 variations within the 10 general cloud classifications, all still with Latin names. We don’t need to remember them all, but they are wonderfully descriptive if you fancy taking a peek at them all on the Met Office website...
I will focus on the main clouds and conditions that bring us such wet weather.
The Jet Stream, as we have explored before, has a major influence on our weather. A band of enormously strong winds in the upper atmosphere, between the troposphere and stratosphere, they have a key role in the development and movement of low-pressure systems. The troposphere is where all our weather occurs as this layer contains the most water vapour.
The Jet Stream is usually at its most intense in winter, as these winds are generated by the huge temperature differences at high altitude, which causes very strong pressure gradients. Warm air has a higher pressure than cold air, so air flows from areas of high pressure to low pressure. The more contrast there is between the two areas of pressure, the greater the wind strength. You may well have seen graphics of the Jet Stream winds right over the UK during this very stormy weather. They can reach up to 200 miles an hour!
Cumulus clouds are very common, white and fluffy and usually indicating good weather on bright days. Cumulus Congesta are the largest forms of cumulus clouds, with the main upward, convective cells still outlined with rounded tops. The image here shows how large these clouds can be, up to a mile or two high if there is enough warm, moist air to allow them to grow upwards. They can grow to enormous height if they are over the sea, as they still gain heat from the sea even after sunset. This image also shows they haven’t started freezing at their highest point yet, after which they cease growing upwards and become cumulonimbus clouds, capable of producing torrential downpours.
These massive clouds develop from the previous Congesta form. Calvus means bald, so it is the name given to the Congesta cloud as soon as it starts to lose the familiar ‘cauliflower’ top, and becomes smoother and more consolidated. They often have a typical anvil top, but all of them can turn into violent thunderstorms.
This is the most stormy phase, with C. Capillatus clouds producing torrential rain, squally showers, lightning and hail. Both of the cumulonimbus clouds contain very strong currents within them, with high water content. These are the clouds that all aircraft avoid, as they create powerful turbulence and the water can easily freeze in thick layers on the cold metal of the plane. Planes also take off and land into the wind, which is why they have such trouble landing in storms, where wind direction is both very strong and changeable.
Cumulonimbus clouds build up along a cold front. This is not the same as forgetting to put your thick jumper on, or not doing your coat up in winter....
A cold front occurs when cold polar air cuts in sharply beneath warmer, moist air that is rising. Winds along the front are gusty, and arranged in a clear edge called a squall line. Heavy rain will fall in many places along the cold front. Behind the front, the air gets colder and pressure rises, while powerful updraughts carry more moisture up so high it then turns to ice. The icy tops of the clouds are blown into a sharp wedge shape by the high-level winds. You can see this in the model of a cold front, shown in the picture below.
The storms can be very intense, but tend to be short lived, often leaving colder air behind, and some showers may still fall after the cold front has passed.
So, inching forward to the meteorological start of Spring, on the very day we meet next - March 1st (2.00 pm) - I will finish this last of these 3 winter nature newsletters with a fabulous photograph of a starling murmuration. Taken by Kathryn Cooper, it is a reminder that these storms are also hugely dangerous for wildlife, including this vast colony of small, fluttering starlings. Phew.
Take care and I am so looking forward to us all meeting up again. Yippee.
We are relaxing some of our Covid precautions - in line with the latest Government regulations.
We are no longer quarantining returned library books - so please take your returned books to the counter for them to be taken off your library account immediately.
We are no longer separating the entrance and exit pathways in the foyer.
We will continue to ventilate the building to maximise good air flow.
We encourage library users to continue to wear a face covering unless exempt.
We encourage library users to continue to sanitise their hands before handling books.
We are a small indoor space, so may ask you to wait in the foyer if we become too crowded.
I thought it would be a change to do a gentle picture quiz this time, much more as a prompt for us to think about familiar wildlife than a competition, but I will go through them with you quickly when we next get together. No marks, just a chance for us to enjoy all the images and put our thinking caps on...
Can you name the flowers shown, and say which arrive first, and what conditions they like in order to thrive?
Which ones are native and where do the others come from?
Which flowers have scent and which are best for early pollinators?
Can you name 3 more flowers or shrubs that bloom in February?
How can you tell toads and frogs apart?
What type of spawn do they each lay, and where do they spend the winter months?
What type of pond suits them best, what other wildlife benefits from a pond, and where should we site one in our garden?
Can you name the different woodpeckers in this image?
How do you tell male and females apart?
What type of trees do they like the most, and what adaptations do they have to protect them when they are ‘drumming’?
What is their favourite food and how do they find it?
Which birds are shown in two of the pictures and which family of birds do the two species belong to?
What characteristics do the two species have in common and what behaviour is being demonstrated in the picture?
What is the other image showing, on what type of tree, and what makes it occur?
Can you name all the birds shown here, and say which are members of the same family?
How do you tell them apart?
Which is the most endangered and where do they all prefer to make their nest?
Which is the first bird to start building their nest?
What is the name and sequence of the elaborate courtship dance of the pair shown together?
Can you name all the lovely creatures shown here, and say what triggers each of them to become more active?
What is the largest mammal doing in the picture?
Which species hibernate and which overwinter and what factors influence why an animal needs to hibernate?
For each shown, what is their usual habitat and favourite food?
Which one is most endangered, and why?
I hope you can all have fun answering the questions for yourselves, or simply enjoy looking at the images of our native wildlife, whether commonly seen or a rare treat. We have fantastic wildlife to learn about together and cherish, even on our doorstep, which I feel makes a really positive impact on our daily lives.
I will write the last of this series of 3 winter newsletters towards the end of February, and really look forward to when we can all meet up again in Spring.
Take extra good care of yourselves until then and warmer weather, excellent company and cake beckon us onwards. Warmest wishes, Jan xx
Library Members can now access Sheffield Libraries anytime, anywhere.
You can use the app to:
Download the NEW Library app from your mobile phone app store.
Scan the QR code above, or go to the Playstore, on Android devices, or the App Store, on iOS devices, and search for Sheffield Libraries. Install the app and open it - you should see the screen below.
Search: Type in the name of a book or an author to search for books. When you select a book you can find out more information about it as well as seeing where copies of it are located in the city. Choose PLACE RESERVATION to have the book sent to your chosen Sheffield library. If you select PLACE RESERVATION you will be asked to sign in using your Library Number and PIN if you haven't already signed in. You will receive an email to tell you when your book is ready for collection.
Scan ISBN barcode: You can scan an ISBN barcode using this option. If the barcode reads successfully and the item is in stock the book will appear on your screen showing where copies of it are located in the city. Choose PLACE RESERVATION to have the book sent to your chosen Sheffield library. If you select PLACE RESERVATION you will be asked to sign in using your Library Number and PIN if you haven't already signed in. You will receive an email to tell you when your book is ready for collection.
Nearest Libraries: Your device will need to allow the app to access your location to use this feature. If this is allowed the app will display all the libraries, showing the nearest to your current location at the top. Select a library to see full address details, opening hours, phone number, website and directions.
My Account: Sign in using your Library Number and PIN. If you tick the box 'Keep me signed in' you won't need to to do this every time. Once logged in you can view loans, reservations and charges. There is an option to link another account, for example a child’s account. You will need the Library Number and PIN of that account to do this. Once linked you can view the same information for that account.
NB: If you don't know your PIN you can request for it to be sent by email at https://www.sheffield.gov.uk/form/libraries-archives/library-pin , or you can call in to the library and ask them to look it up for you.
E-books and E-audio: Selecting this will take you to the OverDrive site where you can sign in to your Libby account. Select the drop-down menu (three short horizontal lines) at the top right of the screen and input your Library Number and Pin. If you are already signed into Libby you will get the option to open the app at the top of the screen.
Social: This link takes you to all the Sheffield Libraries social media
What’s On: This link takes you to Sheffield Libraries Eventbrite site
We intend to make more changes from 1st March 2022 if the situation is still improving. This will include allowing returned books to be taken to the counter to be removed from your account straight away.
We sincerely hope that by April 1st 2022 we will be able to move even closer to being ‘back to normal but meanwhile we will also be ready to revert back to previous levels of restrictions should it become necessary.