The club began as an idea in June 1961 following an unsuccessful attempt some years earlier (when the prime move had to move away from the area). It was important from the start to find a "mother" club to sponsor and encourage this new venture and this was achieved through the good offices of the Rotary Club of Cambridge, and it was Rotarian Bill Warren of that club who did a great deal of the "hand-holding" in the early days in liaison with Mr Derek Walker of Royston, one of the founder members.Granting of CharterThe newly formed Royston club was given the status of "Interim club" until a critical mass of members had been achieved, and a charter was approved by Rotary International by the President of R.I., Mr. Joseph A. Abey on 23rd March 1962. The club started with 31 members. The charter was subsequently presented to the Founder President of the Club, Mr Peter Limbach, on 18th May 1962at a dinner held at the University Arms Hotel, Cambridge. A toast to the new Club was made by Rotarian Bill Warren, a member of the Cambridge Club (Royston's "mother" Club) and a past District Chairman. (click to enlarge photo)A reading desk was presented to the new club by the Cambridge club which is still used to this day.The picture at the RH side shows the presentation which was made at the dinner by Rotarian C.N. Burgess of the Sudbury Club (shown on right) who was the Chairman of R.I. District 8 (equivalent to the District Governor of present days). The other person in the left of the photo was Right Rev. Tom H. Cashmore, Bishop of Dunwich, a Past President of R.I.B.I , a past member of the board of R.I. and was the honoured guest at the dinner to welcome the new club to the Rotary Family.Founder MembersThe photo below is the earliest record record we have of the founder members of the Club which was taken in early March 1963. They are named below:
Silver Jubilee Celebrations 2012
The Club held a Silver Jubilee Celebration on 18th May 2012 at a dinner at Homerton College Cambridge. Special guest was Royston's MP Mr (now Sir) Oliver Heald and was also attended by Annemarie Harte, Chief Executive of Rotary International of Great Britain and Northern Ireland (R.I.B.I.) and also Rotarian Tom Griffin, the District Governor. More than 100 Rotarians and guests attended which was on the exact date the Club was formed 50 year's ago. Mr Heald observed that there had been some marvellous characters belonging to Rotary who had helped shape the Club. "The members today are what we can call the great and the good of the community for the work being done not just locally but on an international scale too" he said. As an example, Mr Heald highlighted Rotary's Shelter Box Scheme which was currently providing for people in Pakistan in desperate need. "There was, too" he said, "the commitment to the community with Rotary being involved with fundraising many charities". In his response, the current President of the Club, Neil Heywood, said that during the past year the Club had helped 26 different charities and had raised more than £17,000 from its various activities. The Club also decided to mark the Jubilee Year by the presentation of a flagpole to the people of Royston, to be erected in the Priory Gardens of the town. This was formally presented to the Town by the (then) Club President, Chris Hardy, in the presence of Mr (now Sir) Oliver Heald MP and Councillor Lindsay Davidson, the Mayor of Royston. Speaking before the unveiling, Chris said: “When we started talking about our 50th year we wanted to ensure that part of our anniversary was to provide something for the community. “We had a number of ideas, but in the end the provision of a community flag pole seemed to be the most practical and workable.” He stressed: “This is a community flag pole and that means any club or group in our town will have the opportunity to fly its own flag to mark an event or occasion.” Chris continued that the project would not have been completed without the help of Rotary members and the generous support of the Brian Leslie Racher Charity Trust, Councillor Fiona Hill from her County Council locality budget and a grant from the Royston area committee of North Herts District Council. Rotary will work with Royston Town Council to ensure there is a turn-over in flags being displayed and will also recognise national events with the hoisting of the Union flag. Just before the end of the ceremony a town crest flag donated by Rotary was presented to the town council.
Please click here to read about Alfie Deards and his contribution to the Royston Rotary club
List of Past Presidents
Back Row (L to R)John Pigg, Peter Mills, Albert Read, Harold Richmond, Sam Wilkinson, R Candler, Don Humphris, Ivan WicksteadMiddle Row (L to R)Bob Logsdon, Bill Darling, Chris Paice, Geoff Snell, Hubert Stearn, Roy Haywood, Jeff Gray, Roy CowellFront Row (L to R)"Peri" Peregrine, Arthur White, Norman Northgraves, Derek Walker, Peter Limbach, Ian Milne, Edward Devonshire, George Haddock, Richard Cox