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Church End, North Somercotes
North Somercotes shown within Lincolnshire
|OS grid reference|
|– London||135 mi (217 km) S|
|Sovereign state||United Kingdom|
|EU Parliament||East Midlands|
|UK Parliament||Louth and Horncastle|
In 2001 village population was 1,599.
Culture and community
The village's name means "North Summer Grazing Area" as only in summer would it be dry enough for sheep and cattle to be able to graze in the area.
North Somercotes is essentially rural in character, with fields and footpaths, however, over the last decade there has been housing development.
North Somercotes previously held a village carnival once a year, usually in mid-July, in which decorated floats, with children and adults in costume, paraded village streets. A teenage village girl was selected to be the Rose Princess, who was crowned during the event, with a younger girl chosen to be the Princess's attendant. The last carnival took place in 2000. All village events ended the following year, effected by Lincolnshire County Council's attempt to keep the 2001 UK foot and mouth crisis away from the county.
A surviving North Somercotes' tradition is a Pancake Race which takes place annually on Shrove Tuesday at the Birkbeck School & Community Arts College. Originally the race was run along Keeling Street, the main street of the village, and part of the A1031. There are races for different age groups, and the name of the adult winner is inscribed on a trophy. Competitors race across a field, each carrying a frying pan containing a pancake, which they continuously toss. The winner is the first to cross a finishing line with their pancake intact.
A monthly village local directory, Communication, is collated by residents and distributed free-of-charge to villagers.
There is an annual 5 a-side football tournament held on the Playing Fields. It is held mid-July over a full weekend. With age groups from Under 7's all the way up to Under 15's.
In August every year there is terrier racing open to everyone in the village to attend this is held on the Playing Fields and is a popular event for villagers.
North Somercotes has two public houses, the Axe and Cleaver and the Bay Horse. The village has two convenience stores, including a Costcutter supermarket, two hairdressers, and a tile shop. A post office, that has existed since the 1840s, provides services including motor vehicle licensing and foreign currency purchase. There are Indian, Chinese and two kebab take-aways, and a restaurant. After the North Somercotes petrol station closed in early 2001 the nearest available fuel became that in the neighbouring village of Saltfleet, or Louth, 8 miles (12.9 km) south-west, or Cleethorpes, 11 miles (17.7 km) north-east. Outside the village towards Donna Nook, is a dog rescue centre.
A youth club for 12- to 17-year-olds meets at a dedicated building on the Birkbeck School grounds. The village is also the base for the North Somercotes Platoon, Lincolnshire Battalion of the Army Cadet Force (ACF), badged as the Royal Anglian Regiment, which meets at North Somercotes C of E Primary School on Warren Road. The ACF is one of the country’s largest voluntary youth organisations for youths aged from 12-18.
North Somercotes' Fire Station is manned by volunteers. The nearest police and ambulance stations are in Louth and Mablethorpe, both about 11 miles distant. The village has its own Medical Centre and dispensary (Marsh Medical Practice), comprising four GPs who divide their time between the village surgery and those in the neighbouring village of Manby.
A caravan park, Lakeside Park, is at the edge of the village. It provides standings for static caravans, and touring caravans from Sheffield and other parts of South Yorkshire, and the adjacent larger town of Grimsby. The camp comprises a lake, suitable for fishing and woods with public footpaths. There are tennis courts, a swimming pool, snooker room, shop, and a number of bars. Local residents pay to use the park's facilities.
The Primary School, dating back to 1691, is one of the oldest in the East Midlands region.
The North Somercotes' Anglican church of St Mary is a Grade I listed building at Church End. Known as a "Marshland" church, and of Early English style, it dates from the 12th century and was heavily restored in the 19th.
RAF Donna Nook is based at North Somercotes. The beach at Donna Nook, 1½ miles from the village, is used by the RAF for target practice, with bombing carried-out at limited times during the week and outside the main seal breeding season of November and December.
In November and December, visitors are attracted to a grey seal breeding colony at Donna Nook beach. The colony is warden-controlled and visitors view seals at close quarters.
North Somercotes is served by a bus link to Louth. Busses run three times a week on Louth Market days: Wednesday, Friday and Saturday. There are buses to Grimsby and Mablethorpe at certain times of year. Cleethorpes railway station is 16 miles distant, operated by TransPennine Express and served by Northern Rail and East Midlands Trains.
North Somercotes Church of England parish church of St Mary is part of the Somercotes and Grainthorpe with Conisholme group of the Deanery of Louthesk in the Diocese of Lincoln. The ecclesiastical parish is shared with South Somercotes and its church of St Peter. The village's Trinity Methodist Church is part of the Louth circuit. Both churches are regularly attended, but neither has a junior church nor sunday school. A Pentecostal Church meets in the village hall.
In November 2003 a schoolboy, Luke Walmsley, was murdered by another pupil at the North Somercotes Birkbeck School. After Luke Walmsley's death his parents set up a Sports Foundation in his memory. The Foundation raised over £150,000. The money was used to build a new pavilion on the village playing fields, to upgrade the sports changing area and to build two new full-size sports pitches and a mini soccer pitch. Work started on the development on 4 February 2009 and was completed in September 2009.
- Historic England. "Church of St Mary, North Somercotes (1063052)". National Heritage List for England. Retrieved 4 June 2013.
- Pevsner, Nikolaus; Harris, John; The Buildings of England: Lincolnshire pp. 328, 329; Penguin, (1964); revised by Nicholas Antram (1989), Yale University Press. ISBN 0300096208
- Historic England. "Locksley Hall, North Somercotes (1063054)". National Heritage List for England. Retrieved 4 June 2013.
- "North & South Somercotes P C C", Diocese of Lincoln, Lincoln.anglican.org
- "St Peter's church", Somercotes.clara.net
- "Funds flood into Luke memorial". BBC News. 24 November 2003. Retrieved 25 March 2009.