Topcliffe Parish Thank John Graham
I had the pleasure in 1998 to be invited by John, who was then Chairman, to stand for and join the Parish Council. Having never been in local politics or government before it was a pleasure to accept and John became a great mentor and I was honoured to serve with him and to succeed him as chairman.
When Topcliffe Parish Council was initially advised about John’s project to produce "The Millennium Book of Topcliffe", a historical narrative of the village, John had already carried out extensive and painstaking research, clawing together forgotten or stored material from numerous sources, and the parish councillors were pleased to offer support.
After a thorough review of the material and likely costs, the Parish Council agreed to provide the seed corn funding to commence the project. This saw the council meeting the printer’s bills and recouping the outlay from book sales. This proved to be a very satisfactory and beneficial arrangement.
The book exceeded expectations and none of us envisaged that "The Millennium Book of Topcliffe" would still be on sale and in demand sixteen years later, selling a total of 600 copies. That is a remarkable achievement and testimony to the excellent authorship of our former village resident, John Graham.
The book is now out of print, but it can now be read freely online thanks to John’s generosity and keenness to share the history of Topcliffe. The Parish Council and residents of Topcliffe are very grateful to John and thank him for allowing us to have access to his book, which will inform residents and pupils alike about their village heritage. Indeed, much of the historical material contained in the book contributed to the legacy of the Magna Carta celebrations and remains centre stage in the Church
Thank you John!
Garry Key - Parish Council Chairman