infobox UK place
country = England
latitude = 52.7400
longitude = -1.1000
official_name = Sileby
population = 6,331 (at 2001 Census)
shire_district = Charnwood
region = East Midlands
constituency_westminster = Loughborough
post_town = LOUGHBOROUGH
postcode_district = LE12
postcode_area = LE
dial_code = 01509
os_grid_reference = SK604151
Sileby is a village and
civil parishin the Soar Valleyin Leicestershire, between Leicesterand Loughborough. Nearby villages include Barrow upon Soar, Mountsorrel, Ratcliffe-on-the-Wreake, Seagraveand Cossington.
The origins of the village date back to around 840 AD.
The area was settled by the
Danes- Leicestershireforming part of the Danelawalong with other counties in the vicinity. The name Sileby may in fact come from the Danish name 'Sighulf'.
Traditionally, Sileby was split into two wards, separated by the
brookthat flows through the middle of the village. These are St Mary’s to the north and St Gregory’s to the south. Recently however, due to Boundary Commission changes, a third ward of ‘Barrow West’ was added albeit as an arbitrary boundary essentially for electoral purposes. This division was strongly resented at the time owing to local rivalries and the idea of a portion of the village being annexed was not popular. In practice however this division is largely ignored. Even the idea of the two traditional wards is becoming somewhat lost as the village grows and new people move in unaware of the significance of the historical division.
One of Sileby's most distinguishing features is the
Anglican churchof St. Maryfounded around 1152. It is a Grade II* listed building, and only 4% of listed buildings in the country are Grade II* status, which means it is of very significant interest. The Gothic tower now houses a fine ring of 10 bells, which attract ringers from far and wide.
Pubs include "The Horse and Trumpet", "The Free Trade Inn", "The Railway Inn", "The Swan" and "The Malthouse", and these cater for all tastes. The Horse and Trumpet (“The Trumpet”), located at the top of Mountsorrel Lane opposite St Mary’s Church is a regular village drinking house offering food, frequent entertainment and has a pool table and skittle alley to the rear. Just around the corner on King Street lies the Railway Inn. This establishment caters more for the younger populace and again has some entertainment and a pool table. Further towards the middle of the village on Swan Street is The White Swan, a more traditional pub with a good reputation for food. On the High Street lies The Malt House (formerly The Duke of York), a much-extended and refurbished establishment catering more for the sports-orientated and generally attracting a mixture of clientele. The only pub in St Gregory’s ward is the Free Trade Inn which stands at the junction of Cossington Road and Manor Drive. This is one of the oldest buildings in Sileby, dating back to the 15th century. This is a very traditional pub serving some food but is generally a ‘drinking’ pub boasting a wide variety of beerand lager.
The village also has two private members' clubs – The Liberal & Working Men’s Club on King Street (next to the Horse and Trumpet), and the Conservative Club on Cossington Road. Both clubs have separate concert rooms and hold the traditional bingo nights. The Working Men’s club has a wide range of age groups amongst its membership.
The Conservative Club provides a safe and friendly enviornment and new Members are very welcome. There are many facilities on offer including a full-size snooker table, pool table, long-alley skittles and a private function room (available for hire, just contact the Club). The club provides live entertainment on most Saturday nights (see the advertising notices outside of the Club), popular bingo nights every Wednesday and most Saturdays, general knowledge and music quizzes every month raising money for charity. The club is also the home of the extremely popular Sileby Annual Flower & Vegetable Show held each September. There is also a successful Santa Sunday held in December with many displays, stalls and hog roast to get you ready for the seasons activities.
Sileby has a great number of sporting clubs, many of which have enjoyed success in recent years. There are well established clubs and facilities for
Cricket, Football, Tennisand Lawn Bowls, as well as many others clubs for Rugby Football, Baseballand Shooting amongst others.
Sileby Town Cricket Club, whose ground is located on Mill Lane on the outskirts of the village, had a highly successful season in 2006 with their first XI gaining promotion to the Everards Premier League by winning the First Division in dramatic style on the final day of the season, as well the second XI gaining promotion to Everards division four and numerous other cup and league successes. The Under 15's team unexpectedly finished as Runners up in the Portman National Finals, a competition contested amongst 1670 other teams.
2006 also saw the formation of the Sileby Town Rugby Football Club, otherwise known as the Sileby Vikings. From modest beginnings the club has grown into a genuinely competitive club and, with its support from local firm Hillyer Transport, aims to become an established force in local rugby in the future.
Sileby has a community magazine, 'Talk@Sileby'. The magazine is published by volunteers four times a year. Electronic copies of all issues can be found on the village website (another project run by volunteers).
The Sileby Community Centre is located on the High Street and has a large main hall with numerous ancillary rooms including a kitchen and bar, as well as a separate Sports Hall. It is housed in what was formerly a Wesleyan
Chapelthat was given to the village some years ago and is now managed by the Parish Council.
There is an active Scout Group, which meets at its HQ on Brook Street, a former shoe factory.
Each year in September there is the Sileby Annual Flower and Vegetable Show held at Sileby Conservative Club. This is an extremely popular event in which local residents and growers of all standards are welcomed to come along and take part.
Chris Needham, of BBCTeenage Video Diaries fame with his 1992 In Bed With Chris Needhamdocumentary, is a resident of Sileby.
The village has expanded greatly in the past 5 years, with several hundred new houses being built, it would appear that all available land - however small - has been developed for housing in line with the prevailing government directive of using
Brownfieldsites before Greenfield landsites. Whilst this, in many ways is an advantage to the village, the potential long term damage caused by additional vehicles on the village roads, pollution and the strain on village amenities has yet to be measured.
* [http://www.sileby-village.co.uk/ Sileby-village.co.uk]
* [http://www.silebyparishcouncil.org.uk/ Sileby Parish Council]
* [http://beehive.thisisleicestershire.co.uk/default.asp?WCI=SiteHome&ID=8932/ Friends of St. Mary's]
* [http://www.silebytownrfc.co.uk/ Sileby Town RFC]
* [http://www.silebytowncc.org.uk/ Sileby Town Cricket Club]
* [http://www.silebyflowerandvegetableshow.btik.com/ Sileby Flower and Vegetable Show]
* [http://www.andyreedmp.org.uk/sileby.html/ Local MP Andy Reed webslink to Sileby]
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