Monthly Archives: April 2023

AGM Agenda and Minutes of last AGM

Yes, here it is – what you have all been waiting for! – the AGM agenda

Sunday 23rd April 2023 @ 5 – 7pm in The Olive Bar, Gregson Centre


  1. Welcome
  2. Minutes of last year’s AGM 20th March 2022
  3. Actions & Matters Arising
  4. Chair’s Report – Past year’s activities & achievements
  5. Guest Speaker – David Redmore – tree planting     & planned willow coppicing
  6. Treasurer’s Report
  7. Future Proposals and Ideas
  8. Social Media
  9. Chair’s Summary & closing remarks
  10. AOB

and for those of you who cannot get enough of these things, here is a link to last year’s AGM Minutes: Friends of Miss Whalley’s Field –  AGM minutes 2022



Jean Argles 1925-2023

It is with sadness that we report the death of Jean Argles, Great-Niece of Miss Whalley, after whom the woodland area in Miss Whalley’s Field is named.

Before taking up work as Lancaster University’s first careers officer in 1967 Jean had 17 jobs in seven countries! At 18 she was working breaking codes and ciphers during the war, with postings supporting the resistance, based in the UK, Italy and Egypt. After 1945 she found placements for refugees from German concentration camps, then held positions with UNESCO, the Malawian government and as a medical social worker.

Jean was a philanthropic contributor to public life in Lancaster in retirement, supporting the University’s concert programme, Christ Church, Ridge and Central Schools, and always participating in the Scarecrow Festival at Wray, where she lived. In 2017 and 2020 she published the war diaries of her father, Colonel Cary Owtram, and co-authored her own memoir, Codebreaking Sisters: Our Secret War.

Jean joined the 2018 Remembrance event at Miss Whalley’s Field, and the following year the wood was planted to which she gave her name. Her remarkable record of public service will be remembered in the legacy it leaves.

(Editor: Many thanks to Matt and Sue Cole for this Appreciation of Jean Argles, who was clearly a most remarkable woman. They have known her for many years and have recently moved to Lancaster themselves).

A full page Obituary of Jean Argles, with more detail of her wartime work in particular, appeared in The Times on Tuesday 18th April – worth reading if you can find a copy. (Note: access to The Times on-line normally requires a subscription.)

AGM details

The AGM will start at 5pm on Sunday 23 April in the Olive room at the Gregson.

First there will be the usual AGM business.  Then we shall have a review of the year, successes and issues arising (like the recent vandalism). We will also discuss future plans for the Field including working more closely with the Gregson.

We have a speaker confirmed (David Redmore – the Council’s tree expert). He will talk about a proposal to coppice the main area of willow, which has demanded so much time and effort over recent years. David will explain why coppicing is the best environmental option and will answer questions on other tree-related matters such as the progress of Jean Argles Wood.

Do come along to the meeting. Miss Whalley’s Field belongs to us all and the more people who get involved, the safer the Field is, and the better we can make it. The exceptional numbers who have turned out for the various volunteering events during the past year show how much the Field is valued by the local community.

Everybody is welcome to the AGM and the Committee will stay in the bar afterwards if people prefer to have an informal chat.

See you there!