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President Peter Barr presided at the weekly meeting meeting of the Rotary Club of Chesterfield held at the Olde House, Newbold, on Friday 18 August 2017.




He welcomed regular visitor, past-president Frank Clifford (Bolsover), and guest speaker, John Kelly from Chesterfield School Pastors.


Information Boards


Information boards circulated included:- attendance register and club calendar of duties and events. 


Mini-Zoo visits Fairplay


The president was pleased to report that his recent visit to the Fairplay Centre, when the club had arranged for the visit of ZooLab to bring along a selection of creepy-crawlies for the enjoyment of the children, had been featured in this week’s Derbyshire Times.


  President Peter Barr with Fairplay children make friends with come of the mini-zoo


Chesterfield School Pastors


The after-lunch speaker was John Kelly who gave an enlightening talk on the work of School Pastors.  This is an initiative of the Ascension Trust, a national Christian charity which is best known for the Street Pastors movement, and operates in sixteen areas of the country in secondary schools and in the post-16 sector, including Chesterfield.   A school pastor provides a reassuring adult presence at times in the school day when children may feel vulnerable and need an adult ‘friend’ who has time to listen to their concerns and maybe help.  They look to support the school in reducing instances of anti-social behaviour, and are available to support the school community at the direction of the school. 


School pastors provide uniformed teams in groups of 2 or 3 for an hour or so in locations requested by the school.   Chesterfield School Pastors was launched in February 2014 with a team of seven volunteers and began work in one local school.  Working with, and supporting individual students, is their strength.  School pastors are Christians from local churches, approved by a minister who knows them well.  They complete 25 hours of training and need an enhanced CRB check.  Most importantly they are people with a heart to work with young people, taking time to listen, care and help youngsters who very often come from disadvantaged backgrounds.


The inspiration for this work comes from Revd Les Isaac, founder and director of The Ascension Trust, who pioneered Street Pastors because of his belief in the Bible’s challenge to the church to be a catalyst for social action.  More details:


President Peter Barr (left) with local school pastor John Kelly, and

speaker host, rotarian Keith Hutchinson (right)


After some forthright questions and answers a vote of thanks to the speaker was proposed by speaker host, rotarian Keith Hutchinson, who commented that ‘the good work of school pastors had opened a few eyes’.


Next Meeting 


The meeting was brought to a close after the closing toast was proposed by past-president Michael Hadfield.  At the next meeting on Friday 25 August 2017 the club will be presenting a cheque to Weston Park Hospital Cancer Charity, which is one of the nominated beneficiaries from the club organised Eckington Classic Car & Bike Show 2017. Host is Alan Clarke and duty rotarian is David Dolman.