I Have Gone
my name softly after I have gone.
loved the quiet things, the flowers and the dew,
birds homing; and the frost that shone
nursery windows when my years were few;
autumn mists subduing hill and plain
blurring outlines of those older moods
follow, after loss and grief and pain -
last and best, a gentle laugh with friends,
bitterness foregone, and evening near.
be kind and faithful when day ends,
shall not meet that ragged starveling 'fear'
by one we take the unknown way -
my name softly - there's no more to say -
I. Arlett [1896-1948]
Although she had been unwell for some time, it was with much sadness we learnt
that Ina had passed away on the 3rd July.
and her husband Cecil, who sadly passed away last November at the age of 102,
moved to Devon from Coventry in 1952 and for 44 years ran a small pottery
business in Braunton.
for 71 years, Philton House with Pip and Tony, was latterly home to them both -
for Ina for 11 years before increasing dementia meant that she could no longer
be looked after at home and she moved to a residential home. As her condition
became worse, she moved to Edenmore Nursing Home in Ilfracombe, where she was
wonderfully looked after. Gradually weakening over the last months,
particularly since Cecil's death, she died peacefully in her sleep at the
beginning of July.
thoughts are with Pip and Tony and all her family at this time of sorrow.
thanks to everyone who helped on Gift Day and for your generous donations. At
the time of writing, the total received stands at £783 with envelopes still
coming in. If you have not returned yours yet, it is not too late, please
hand it in to church or the village shop. The weather held for the day which
was especially busy in the morning with Bishop Robert Atwell's visit and the
children out and about enjoying their community week.
Our next major fund-raising event will be our Church Fayre, to be held
on Tuesday,19th August, at the Manor Hall, commencing at 6.30 p.m.
There will be sideshows, skittle alley, barbeque, bric-a-brac, raffle and
refreshments will be served all evening. Offers of help and, as always, gifts
of cakes, bottles [full!], books, good bric-a-brac, china and glass, raffle
prizes, etc., will be very welcome. Please contact Sue and Stuart Neale
 with your offers. BUT, most importantly, please come
along on the day, support us and join in the fun!
The Christians Together Service held on 22nd June in the evening was enjoyed by
all who came. Linda Pearce, the Methodist Minister, and Avril Harrild from
the Baptist Church, gave a lively 'interview' about their five days living on
the line, each spending only £1 a day on food, all for Christian Aid. There
may be another Christians Together Service in Berrynarbor on the evening of
Sunday, 31st August.
Berrynarbor Choir will be giving a Concert in St. Peter's on Saturday, 27th
September, starting at 7.30 p.m. Tickets, which will include a Cheese and
Wine Supper [to follow the concert] will cost £5.00 and will be available from
the Village Shop in early September.
will continue as usual throughout August and September, with Holy Communion on
the 2nd and 4th Sundays of the month.
will be celebrated on Sunday, 5th October, with a Family Service at 11.00 a.m.
and the Supper on Wednesday, 8th October - more details in the next Newsletter
but also look out for posters.
Lunches at The Globe will be on Wednesdays
August and 24th September, 12.00 noon onwards and everyone welcome as always.
Many of you will know that Mum had a tragic accident at the
end of January, falling in her kitchen whilst making her morning cuppa. She broke
her neck and was left paralysed from the chest down.
After almost three months in intensive care at Taunton and
Barnstaple, she is now resident at Tyspane nursing home in Braunton, where she
is very well looked after. She has battled, and won, against several
infections, including 2 bouts of pneumonia, but unfortunately there is no hope
of any recovery from her paralysis.
We should like to thank all those friends who enquire
after her, and whose regular visits are very much appreciated.
Mike & Sue Richards
Our thoughts are with Betty, Mike and Sue and all the family.
We were away from the 24th May to 10th June which means that some of the statistics
for the two months have had to be amalgamated.
May was fairly unsettled and often windy. Over the weekend of the 10th
and 11th [the Ten Torrs weekend] there were strong to gale force winds and
blustery showers to hamper the youngsters and also strong enough to bring down
a couple of trees in our garden. The strongest gust of the month was 31 knots
on the 10th.
Up to the 24th we recorded 58mm of rain and a minimum temperature of 5.9 Deg C on
the 21st. 164.71 hours of sunshine were recorded which was fairly average for
When we returned home on the 10th June we had 68mm in the rain gauge and then
the weather settled right down and for the rest of the month we recorded only
9mm of rain of which 6mm fell on the 27th [the start of Glastonbury!] In
total for May and June we recorded 135mm and for the first six months of the
The last three weeks of June were for the most part bright, sunny warm and dry.
The temperature reached over 20 Deg C every day but one and peaked at 24.2 Deg C on the
23rd. Not surprisingly the 193.14 hours of sunshine were the second highest
since 2003, beaten only by June 2010. Winds were light, mainly around 0
- 12 knots with the strongest gust only 18 knots.
We have had a taste of summer - dare we hope for more?
girls at Lee Lodge put on another wonderful afternoon of music and refreshments
to celebrate Ron's Birthday, his 98th, and those who joined him for this
occasion would like to thank them.
too, would like to say a very big thank you to them for doing him so proud yet
again and also to everyone who came to join him, sent him cards and gave him
presents. So many cards it was hard to find somewhere to display them!
During the afternoon there was a raffle, flowers, fruit and vegetables for sale
and a bric-a-brac stall. The staff would like to thank everyone for their
support in helping to raise £200 which will go to providing the residents with
Christmas celebrations and Lunch.
As a result of my recent [all be it unplanned] adventure in the Sterridge Valley,
it has cemented our firm belief that when we moved into Berrynarbor, Paul and
I found ourselves in a very special place with some very special people.
Many of you reading this will be aware of the excitement that came to the
village one sunny afternoon in May when the big yellow Chivenor helicopter was
spotted hovering mysteriously over the pine trees in the Sterridge.
Certainly it was a day that will forever be in my memory. I had decided to
take the dog for a quick run around the woods and before I knew it, found
myself sitting in the middle of the path with a broken ankle. In many ways I
had a lucky break! Lucky I had my mobile phone with me, lucky I had a phone
signal, and lucky that the helicopter crew were already on exercise nearby.
It took the two ambulance crews that were sent out 45 minutes to track me down,
and as they could not get their vehicles close to where I was, they arranged a
rescue by helicopter. I was just the type of exercise they like to practice
Just as in the movies, white blankets were laid on the forest floor so that I
could be spotted from above through the thick canopy. And without much ado a
friendly guy descended on a winch, introduced himself and explained how they
proposed to get me into the helicopter. So with a couple of straps under my
arms I was swiftly scooped up and winched into the sky. Before I knew it I
found myself in Barnstaple A & E, feeling a little shell shocked by the
As I write this I am nearing the end of my six weeks in plaster and looking
forward to getting my life back on track.
However, I should really like to take this opportunity of thanking the many,
many people of the village, whose concern and kindness have been overwhelming
for both Paul and me. We have been inundated with cards, flowers, cakes and
food parcels of all sorts, visits, phone calls and general offers of help - not
to mention the army of volunteers for dog walking duties which Paul has
certainly found invaluable.
As I mentioned in the beginning, it is at times such as this that you realise
what a very special village spirit exists here in Berrynarbor. We both feel
very lucky to live among such wonderful people.
A very big thank you once again.
loyalty of the residents of Berrynarbor was demonstrated in no uncertain
manner. The Committee worked hard to achieve success, and had the
co-operation of every resident, down to the humblest cottager. Indeed, the
spirit of co-operation was never more strikingly exemplified, and it was
without doubt the most successful and enjoyable day in the history of this
Jubilee* spirit was everywhere, and it was a day that will never be forgotten
by those who were privileged to take part. On behalf of the Parish Council,
Mr. Wm. Draper, the Chairman, sent a message of hearty congratulations to Their
Majesties and a gracious reply was received.
seat in the ancient Parish Church was occupied for the morning service, which
was conducted by Rev. Cain in the unavoidable absence of the rector, Rev. R.
Churchill, the lessons being read by Mr. C.
Whale as representing the Nonconformists.
the afternoon there were sports for the children, and what a joyous time the
youngsters spent in striving for the numerous prizes! The sports were
followed by a tea, to which every parishioner was invited. There was
happiness everywhere; and outside the flags fluttered in the breeze, giving
the whole village an atmosphere of festivity and rejoicing.
Nearly 300 at Dance
climax to a wonderful day was reached in the evening, when the Manor Hall
attracted a crowd of nearly 300 for the dance in aid of Ilfracombe Hospital.
Here again the carnival spirit was supreme, and all agreed that it was a
record-breaking function. The decorations were of a comprehensive and
charming character. The hall was floodlit, and the fairy lights added to the
Penn-Curzon, C.B.E., looked in during the evening, and during an interval
delivered a happy little speech on the significance of the day, saying how
thankful all were that King George and Queen Mary had been spared to reign for
such a long period. Mr. H. Holbrook, hon. secretary of the Ilfracombe
Hospital, in a few well-chosen words, thanked everybody for supporting the
hospital funds in such a handsome manner.
was also a huge bonfire, which illuminated the whole countryside.
following day teas were taken to those who, owing to old age or infirmity, had
been unable to attend the festivities the previous day.
certainly showed a wonderful spirit in celebrating the Jubilee.* "There was
not a single hitch, and all pulled together for the good of the whole,"
remarked a member of the Committee."
don't change in Berry, do they? This cutting was taken from the North Devon
Journal and kept by my grandmother, who must have enjoyed herself.
Silver Jubilee of King George V, May 1935.
The First World War broke out in 1914, during which the King made several
visits to the front line in France and Belgium. He was a war casualty
himself: during a visit to France in 1915, his horse rolled on him and he
received serious internal injuries from which he never fully recovered. The
1914-1918 war enabled the King and Queen Mary to come into close contact with
the mass of their people, to an extent unknown since the seventeenth century.
YOUR MANOR HALL
Parish has a long record of turning up trumps supporting both celebrations, as
above, and catastrophes.
is our star asset - the old Manor House and Manor Hall that is in trouble at
present. The mediaeval roof trusses and supports to the Manor House roof are
under severe attack from dry rot. They need to be treated and replaced in
places with some urgency.
Manor Hall floor supports are suffering from wet rot and need urgent work.
Management Committee are busy preparing a case for funds from the National
Lottery, The Hereditary Fund and the Halsinger Down Fund, but these will depend
on how much we can raise ourselves.
Committee would be very pleased to receive input and ideas for fundraising
events and we are hoping the Annual Revels on the
August will be well supported and any kind of help would be much appreciated.
story and the lessons I have learned
I recently allowed myself to get drawn in to a cold calling computer scam. I
now appreciate that it has been floating around for many years and involves
people in Indian call centres pretending they are representatives of Microsoft
technical support. They tell the victim that they know their computer is
running slowly and that they can fix it. The whole episode left me feeling
mentally mugged. However, I'm much wiser now and am determined to help others
from falling into the same trap by sharing my experience and the lessons I have
I was immediately drawn in to believing that the caller really did know that my
computer was working slowly and that he could fix it. [When I took the call I
did not appreciate that Microsoft could not possibly have known this and that they
NEVER call customers anyway].
The caller showed me how to allow him to access my computer remotely. Then, by
manipulating my cursor, he showed me a log of all Microsoft reports. He asked
me to count the errors, before warning me: "These are very harmful for
your computer and are major problems. Each one has already started to corrupt
your whole system. They are malicious hacking files that are making the
computer infected and the system slow. Do not delete any of the files as they could
be activated and crash the computer. You have 100 hacking files on your
computer, you are very high risk."
I now realise that a key contributor to the success of these scams is to
involve the victim in counting the errors and in making spurious notes about
the technical expert's progress. It's all about social engineering.
The caller went on to tell me that my software warranty had expired and showed
me that some of the services had a "stopped" status because my
warranty had expired and only a Microsoft technician could start them again.
At this point I was advised that I needed to register for a warranty renewal
for £150. It was sold as a complete one off payment for the next 5 years. Out
of misplaced trust I regrettably paid this sum.
When I related the conversation to my wife, it suddenly dawned on me that I had
been duped! I called the firm's number I had been given and told a supervisor
that I was convinced I had been conned. In a sinister tone he replied that if
I turned off my computer before the repairs had been completed all the files
would be corrupted.
consequence - for my computer
As soon as the bogus
technician had left my computer, I turned it off and called Nick Burnell of
Exmoor Computers. When he started my computer he could see that the settings
had been interfered with to give the appearance that my computer had
significant operating errors. To my great relief he was able to change all the
revised settings back to their original state and so leave my computer in full
working order. Phew!
Nick tells me that the changes were made in order to scare me into believing
that the errors were serious. The fraudsters had deliberately left my computer
so that it showed that a number of these errors remained, in order to persuade
me to pay them more money in order - apparently - to fix them. Indeed the
fraudsters called repeatedly for days afterwards. When I demanded that they
should immediately repay the money they had taken under false pretences from my
bank account, I was told they would never do that.
consequence - for my bank balance
My bank was very cooperative from the outset and asked me to write to explain
the basis of my claim that they were fraudulent. As a result, I'm happy to
report the sum I paid to the tricksters was reimbursed by Visa.
One thing that helped my case was that I reported the scam to ActionFraud. Whilst
they are unable to investigate every case, it enables them to build a picture
of the range of fraudulent crimes being committed and the perpetrators.
If any reader would like to know more about any concerns they may have arising
from this article, please feel free to call me.
- Pink Heather
Castle by the Lake
you seen the castle?
tall castle by the lake?
the rosy golden clouds
evening high above?
have I seen it thus.
by bright moonlight,
mist far out spread.
sometimes seems to bow
image down below,
then to stretch and strain
cloudy evening glow.
wind and the water's lapping
on a fresher note?
it the sound of lute strings
halls and festive song?
rough translation from one of Germany's 3 major poets - Schiller perhaps.]
Life [priest and poet say] is but a dream;
I wish no happier one than to be laid
Beneath a cool syringa's scented shade,
Or wavy willow, by the running stream,
Brimful of moral, where the dragon-fly,
Wanders as careless and content as I.
Thanks for this fancy, insect king,
Of purple crest and filmy wing,
Who with indifference givest up
The water-lily's golden cup,
To come again and overlook
What I am writing in my book.
Believe me, most who read the line
Will read with hornier eyes than thine;
And yet their souls shall live for ever,
And thine drop dead into the river!
God pardon them, O insect king,
Who fancy so unjust a thing!
Savage Landor [1775-1864]
a breeze mid blossoms straying,
Hope clung feeding, like a bee-
were mine! Life went a-maying
Nature, Hope, and Poesy,
was young?-Ah, woeful When!
for the change 'twixt Now and Then!
breathing house not built with hands,
body that does me grievous wrong,
aery cliffs and glittering sands,
lightly then it flashed along:-
those trim skiffs, unknown of yore,
winding lakes and rivers wide,
ask no aid of sail or oar,
fear no spite of wind or tide!
cared this body for wind or weather
Youth and I lived in't together.
are lovely; Love is flower-like;
is a sheltering tree;
joys, that came down shower-like,
Friendship, Love, and Liberty,
was old? Ah woeful Ere,
tells me, Youth's no longer here!
Youth! for years so many and sweet,
known, that Thou and I were one,
think it but a fond conceit-
cannot be that Thou art gone!
vesper-bell hath not yet toll'd:-
thou wert aye a masker bold!
strange disguise hast now put on,
make believe, that thou are gone?
these locks in silvery slips,
drooping gait, this altered size:
Spring-tide blossoms on thy lips,
tears take sunshine from thine eyes!
is but thought: so think I will
Youth and I are house-mates still.
are the gems of morning,
the tears of mournful eve!
no hope is, life's a warning
only serves to make us grieve,
we are old:
only serves to make us grieve
oft and tedious taking-leave,
some poor nigh-related guest,
may not rudely be dismist;
hath outstay'd his welcome while,
tells the jest without the smile.
cures but wine makes people happy.'
meeting commences with our AGM, which is historically-brief, but informative
and proper. As Chairman, Tony Summers delivered this and was pleased to
announce, among other things, that because of our good attendances recently,
our healthy budget enables our 40+ regularly-attending members to sample
excellent wines. The hall is capacious and can take plenty more, so if you
fancy joining us please do. Our 2014-15 season begins at 8.00 p.m. on
Wednesday, 15th October in the Manor Hall.
Tony Summers' 'Mystery Tour' was so-called because the prices were to
us! For our last Wine Circle meeting of the 2013-14 season, he presented
wines bought in Roscoff, Brittany. We started with a bubbly - a Sparkling
Saumur. Tony had done his homework: it would have cost anything up to £13.49 a
bottle in the UK, however, it was only 7. It was a lovely bubbly, but the
other two whites were equally as good. One was a Sauvignon Blanc, the other a
Muscadet. Their prices were 4.50 and 4.00.
The reds were equally as good. The first was a 2010 Beaujolais. It was
smooth, hand-picked Gamay grapes and 9. A Malbec next, stronger than the
first, but also very good at only 7, and finally a 2006 Cru Bourgeois Bordeaux,
mainly Cabernet Sauvignon which was described as complex, superior and needed
food. On the 'net, similar wines would have been £16-£21 per bottle. Tony
bought it for 11.5 or £9.80. There wasn't one 'iffy' wine among them, even
though the cheapest worked out to be £3.42 a bottle, which just proves and highlights
the tax differences on alcohol between France and the UK!
Adam - Secretary and Promotional Co-ordinator
THE RECTOR . . .
I am very much looking forward to the weekend of commemoration of the First
World War at the Manor Hall on 2nd and 3rd August.
The shadow of this terrible war is lengthening now, yet no doubt many of us
have family and folk memories. My Grandpa saw his tenth birthday the day war
was declared and showed me some of the headlines of the period. Were members
of your family involved directly or knew those who were? Maybe some of your
memorabilia will be in evidence at our village commemoration.
Monday 4th August will see me in Belgium at the Menin Gate for the daily
ceremony at 8.00 p.m. when
the Last Post is sounded. Many will be remembering the exact time our country
entered the war by holding a candlelit vigil
between 10.00 and 11.00 in the evening.
I used to teach history and am well aware of the difficulty of the task of
remembering. Memory and meaning
are entwined together; what events meant to different people then and now
results in memory. becoming contested.
example, in present day Serbia, Gavrilo Princep, the young 19 year old student
who shot the heir to the Austro-Hungarian Empire, is hailed as a freedom
fighter. Yet those shots rang round the world and set in motion the chain of events
that led to a general European and then a global catastrophe.
Remembering becomes very tricky. Although subscribing a bit less than I
once did to 'Lions led by donkeys', the waste of lives and the appalling
tactics of sending men up against the lethal fire power of machine guns has
haunted generations since. Was the War really necessary? Should we not
have stayed out and left the European powers to get on with it? Why were no
statesmen prepared to stand back and prevent the descent into barbarity and the
implosion of civilisation? These are questions that are being hotly debated and
I expect many of us will have a view.
Remembering any major event that sears itself into memory is difficult
territory. Memory of the past is all wrapped up with people's identities. One
far off night, another figure from history sat with his followers. It was late
that evening too. "Remember me like this." said Jesus. "Remember me like
every good wish,
SLIGHTED HUGH O'NEILL
Earl of [Ty]rone
Oh dear! On our way
back from a great holiday in County Donegal, Republic of Ireland, we turned the
car homewards at Diggers Cross to see this sign:
I wrote of the Flight
of the Earls in the June 1993 edition, but as you will either have forgotten or
weren't even living in Berrynarbor then, I will repeat that Combe Martin's much
disparaged Earl of Rone was none other than the much revered Hugh O'Neill, Earl
of Tyrone, who was forced to flee from Ireland, thus subjugating the Irish to
English rule for many years to come. Together with Rory O'Donnell [Earl of
Tyrconnell] and Sea Captain Cuconnaught Maguire, he fled with over 90 followers
from the shores of Rathmullan on Loch Swilly, County Donegal, at midnight on
September 12th 1607. We lived in that delightful village for 6 years in the
1970's, and knew how revered the Earls were and what an impact the Flight had
on Irish history.
Since our last visit to
Rathmullan, two life-size bronze sculptures had been erected on the beach, one
of the Flight of the Earls and next to them their sorrowing and grieving
clansmen, now leaderless. The Earls never returned to Ireland, but unlike the
Combe Martin version, the Earl of Tyrone wasn't drowned at Combe Martin beach,
nor taken to Exeter, tried for treason, found guilty and executed. Instead,
both Earls moved to Rome where, arriving in May 1608, they were welcomed by
Pope Paul V and "amply provided with every requirement befitting people of
their condition". Although Rory died within a few weeks of arriving there,
Hugh survived until July 20th 1616, when he died aged 76.
Coming back to the
impressive sculptures on Rathmullan beach, these were opened by the President
of Ireland, Mary McAleese, exactly 400 years to the day in 2007.
So, my thoughts are with
poor old Hugh. My 'Irishness' says that to have as a memorial some fellow
stuffed with straw, seated backwards on a donkey, spurs reversed, to say
nothing of being shot, falling off several times and revived by the 'Hoss' and
the 'Fool', and then thrown into the sea is sacrilege!
I've never watched
this dastardly event, but have it on good authority that the compliant donkey
died two years ago. Last year's replacement was a grumpy beast who threw the
Earl off without asking! So this year, the poor chap had to walk to his
drenching. At least there's a bit of justice somewhere. Serves 'em all right
Hugh O'Neill sounds
quite a character. I feel a 'Mover and Shaker' might be in the wings one day.
Watch this space.
has been a very busy month at the Preschool. The children have been enjoying
the sunny weather playing in the garden and have planted and grown some runner
beans and strawberries. The 4 year olds [and very nearly 4 year olds] are
getting ready to go to 'Big School' and have been enjoying some transition
visits where they are able to have lunch, play in the playground with the older
children and see the routines that they will experience in September.
On the 5th of July, Preschool celebrated its 30th Birthday - since it was
registered with Ofsted as a Preschool - with games and a BBQ at the Manor Hall.
The weather was unexpectedly good and the children enjoyed strawberries and
cream, face painting, balloon modelling, biscuit decorating and splat the rat, along
with many other activities. In total we raised £247 which will go towards an
outdoor classroom for the children of the Preschool to enjoy for the next 30
In October, Preschool will be holding its AGM where a number of committee
members will be stepping down. The positions of Treasurer and Chairperson
will become vacant and we shall be looking for volunteers to fill these
positions. The Preschool can only remain open if there are 5 committee
members. We are, therefore, looking for members of the community, as well as
parents, to help fill these positions. Volunteers do not need any educational
experience, just a DBS [criminal record] check, which the Preschool can help
you complete. Please drop in to Preschool if you are able to help in any way
and see what we are all up to.
Orr - Chair
HORTICULTURAL & CRAFT SHOW
30th August 2014
Schedules and Entry Forms for the Show to be held on Saturday, 30th August, in
the Manor Hall are available from the Shop, Sue's of Combe Martin and The
Open to residents, non-residents and visitors, we hope that everyone, including
all the youngsters, will try to put in at least one entry, but more
preferably! Importantly, no one is looking for perfect items,
just the enjoyment of joining in this village event. Remember, just
because you have ticked a class on the entry form, it does not mean that you have
to submit an entry - so, go on, tick as many as you can! Whether you
enter something or not, do come along on the day of the Show, from 2.00 p.m. to
view all the exhibits and to take
in the raffle.
How are your spuds and sunflowers going? Hopefully
OK. Bring your potatoes, still in the pot but minus any foliage,
and your sunflower head placed in a jar or vase, along to the Hall, either on
Friday evening, from 7.00 to 8.30 p.m. or Saturday morning, from 9.00 to 10.30 a.m.
Please make sure your pot or jar is clearly labelled with your name and
stating if you are a junior. Your haul [and pot] may be
collected, for later consumption, during the afternoon, and your
sunflower! Uncollected potatoes will be deemed free to sell.
So, LOTS and LOTS of entries please, and lots of visitors for the Show, Prize
Giving and Raffle. See you there.
Karen, Yvonne, Pip, and Charlotte - the Organising
THOSE YEARS LATER
I do miss Berrynarbor! Although I only spent the six and a half years through
World War II and a little beyond there - it was a very impressionable time.
I am very happy here in our bungalow in Suffolk with its pleasant [not flat]
countryside, I still reminisce about my time spent in Devon.
rugged shore line, pretty little coves, secluded beaches and, of course, the
fine sands [7th best in the world] at Woolacombe.
my time in your village, transport was very limited. Due to there being few
private cars and petrol rationing, you were more or less restricted to bus,
bicycle or shanks pony.
meant that the extent of my travelling was about 10 to 12 miles. Cycling was
pretty hard even if you were lucky enough to have a three speed gear, and you
spent a long time pushing your bike up one side of a hill only to spend what
seemed like minutes coming down the other side!
one point, with my education lacking, I was sent to a tutor in Shute Lane and
that is quite a push I can tell you!
would cycle to Barnstaple or Woolacombe but never attempted the full Sterridge
Valley right to the top.
has drawn me back for holidays in the North Devon area several times, however,
now at 85 years of age, I find I cannot face long distance travel. Mentioning
my age, I should also mention that on the 12th May last, Betty and I celebrated
our 60th Wedding Anniversary and had our card from Her Majesty the Queen.
the years I have seen some changes. Berrynarbor now has caravan sites, Miss
Cooper's shop has long gone and now you have your own Village Shop. The Manor
Hall is much the same but when I saw it last there was no stage. In
Ilfracombe there were two cinemas, alas only one now.
was very sad to see the Victoria Pavilion go although I have enjoyed shows and
films at the new Landmark Theatre. The Alexandra Theatre I knew well and
enjoyed dances and plays there, so I was pleased to see that after many
changes, it is still in use.
the Quay in Ilfracombe were private houses, these are now all businesses.
is now 68 years since we left Devon to return to our own house in Upminster
where I lived again from the age of 16 until I got married in 1954. Two years
later it was sold to actor Victor Maddern [of Cockleshell Heroes and Carrington
VC fame, as well as many other parts here and in Hollywood]. Victor Maddern
eventually sold together with his neighbour, the houses pulled down and flats
built on the site.
picture you see would have been taken with a plate camera about 107 years
ago. The stables, provided only for the use of horses or horse drawn
vehicles, were later converted into garages and a garage built on the right
The maintenance of a house like that was even in our time far too costly to
continue with, and my mother and half-brother moved into a small bungalow at
Billericay. When Betty and I married we moved into a maisonette at Gidea Park
just outside Romford.
then we have moved to Billericay, Tiptree, 3 times in Colchester and now to
Suffolk. We are not moving anymore!
was walking past our local undertaker the other day and spotted one of the
funeral directors standing outside.
today thank you,." I called cheerfully.
you later," he replied with a smile.
Beauclerk - Stowmarket
PTFA SUMMER FETE & BGT
beautiful days either side, it was disappointing that Saturday, 12th July was
damp and dull, but that did not dampen spirits and what a great day of action
packed fun it was!
fete in the Pitt Hill sports field was busy from mid-day with a falconry
display, bouncy castles, coconut shy, hoopla, tombola, cheer leading display,
ball toss and lots, lots more.
the afternoon Beaford Arts gave two performances of The Boy Who Fell in Love
with the Stars, at the Manor Hall.
five o'clock approached, everyone gravitated to the Manor Hall where the first
ever final of Berrynarbor's Got Talent was to take place. Whilst
mouth-watering smells wafted from the BBQ, the hall became full of eager
participants, parents, siblings and villagers, for what was billed to be a
great show and it was!
auditions, nine finalists took to the stage, compered by Dave and assisted by
our own Ant and Dec, Dylan and Louis. Beth, Karina, Emily, Olivia, Katelyn
and Anna, with a dancing Hazel, delighted the audience with their singing
talent, whilst Thomas entertained with his armpit music, Peter gave an amusing
recitation and Fenella and Bees Aloud buzzed their way through an amusing song
and dance routine.
votes counted, the raffle drawn and the burgers and hot dogs demolished, the
winners were announced. Bees Aloud took third place, Olivia second and
Katelyn, who sang Let It Go from Frozen took first place and the trophy.
Congratulations to the winners and all the participants for a great show and
The evening continued with live music from Gemma, Kenny, Rob, Charmaine and Lyndsey,
followed by the Knowleberries who finished the day off with a bang.
and Gemma would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who attended
the day and a very special thank you to all the many helpers without whom it
would not have been such a fabulous day, raising approximately £1400.
. . . and from those attending, a big thank you to Jenny and Gemma for their
tireless hard work deserving of success. Will there be an annual BGT in
FROM OUR COMMUNITY SHOP & POST OFFICE
WARNING: BRIGHT NEW
VILLAGE SHOP SIGNS Look out for our new signs, they are
popping up everywhere. Yes, before you ask, we do have permission and
have checked all the regulations. Debbie and Keith worked into the night to
get them all displayed but sadly the sign fairy appeared and one was gone in a
flash overnight. Any information regarding this sign, please let us know -
you could get a reward - a big smile!
Well, we all know how
good the Pantry's Multi-seed bread is for those that buy it every week, but do
you realise how well travelled it is? One of our customers takes a loaf to
work over at Braunton every week and an American visitor liked the bread so
much she took one back to the USA. How's that for bread miles?
We stock a good
assortment of cider: Thatchers, Sam's Poundhouse, Scrumpy Jack and Hancocks, which
includes their Molton Nector and flagons of Devon Cider - would make
a great gift for a cider drinker!
Good value lines
McCoy's Classic 6 Pack
& McCoy's Jackets 6 Pack, only a £1.00 each. You have to buy 2 packs
for that deal in a major supermarket.
New in is the Levi
Roots Drinks: Coconut and Lime Water and his Tropical Punch at £1.00 in
the drinks 'fridge.
We are also trying a
new egg supplier: Freebird Free Range Poultry based at March End Farm,
Georgeham. We did ask for Large eggs but can only get Medium due to the
small chickens - maybe we will get large when the chickens grow!
If you have not visited
us for some time why not come in and see what we offer - we do not bite!
Due to the impending retirement of the present Treasurer we are looking for a
successor. The duties include :
of quarterly and annual Profit and Loss figures
communications with the bank, suppliers, accountants etc
of monthly salaries to 2 staff
We use a Sage accounting package.
The ideal person should have some book keeping/accountancy experience, although
full training can be given as required. The job is honorary - i.e. no salary
is paid - and the Treasurer is a key member of the Shop Committee, the majority
of whom are also non-paid volunteers.
If you are interested in contributing to this important village enterprise
please contact me for further details.
883129 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
THE PARISH COUNCIL
and July 2014
applications for co-option to the Parish Council had been received and due to
the disqualification of Cllr. Lethaby for non-attendance, there are now 3
at both meetings had been received from the Police, County Councillor Andrea
Davis, and District Councillors Yvette Gubb and
Clarke. Councillors Lorna Bowden and Linda Thomas and Councillor Steve Hill
reported on Manor Hall matters and the play area respectively.
initiative of a Parish Council website was again deferred to be discussed at
the August meeting.
- balances were given and budgetary figures circulated for May and June.
are on-going regarding the ownership of a triangular piece of land at Pitt
Hill, and five planning applications were discussed.
Environment Agency had written with regard to the dumping of shillet and been
informed of the work at Harpers Mill.
agreed to send a letter of support to DCC Public Rights of Way Department in
connection with the Sterridge Valley Schedule 14 Application submitted by
donation had been made to the WWI Centenary Exhibition and Councillors acknowledged
the sterling effort and work put in by
Applegate and the Berry in Bloom team.
next meeting of the Parish Council will be on Tuesday,
August, 7.00 p.m. at the Manor Hall.
DON'T WANT TO LIVE IN A COMMUNE!
- dictionary definition 'a group of people living in a particular place: the
place in which they live, a group of people bonded together by a common
religion, nationality or occupation i.e. The Asian Community.'
we please go back to being villagers, parishioners and neighbours - a word with
Anglo Saxon origins?
don't want to live in a commune - 'a number of unrelated families and
individuals living together with shared accommodation, supplies and
want to go the village shop, pubs and school and the Parish Church.
noticed that in her Millennium speech, the Queen didn't mention communities,
just neighbourhoods. What's good enough for the Queen is good enough for me!
Manor Hall - the state we're in
The Manor Hall AGM took place on 2nd July and the opportunity was taken to have
a good question and answer session on the disrepair issues at the hall and the
potential solutions. Some of you may have seen the leaflet at the shop which
summarises the problems and suggestions for a renovated main hall. These are
also given below.
Before this let's make a point about funding. It is intended to pursue several
grants, some of them very large, notably from the Big Lottery. This isn't an
easy process and will take time, well over a year in fact. For anyone
concerned that calls for money will be made to the community at large, as
attempted back in the 1990's, it's very simple. Most of the work will be
grant funded. Therefore three things can happen: 1. We get nothing [unlikely]
2. We get a modest amount, in which case we carry out the most urgent works,
or 3. We get what we need or close to it.
This is not to say that
fundraising, like the current sale of the Rotary Club raffle tickets, or Berry
Revels on 5th August, are not important - it all raises money and as importantly
shows the support of the community.
and Building Defects at the Manor Hall
lot of disrepair is visible, but we have also used accredited historic
buildings surveyors, Smith Gore of Exeter, to survey the whole building, plus
Orbis structural engineers from Barnstaple to design remedies to the defects in
the old roof.
roof to the manor hall wing (Tudor or possibly medieval)
- damage by woodworm clearly visible
what needs to be done? The main works defects are:
The old roof (manor house wing) This
old oak roof has several defects - little lateral restraint at ceiling level,
which has caused the wall to push out, no original purlins and hence some
racking (rafters leaning sideways), and little support to the roof in one
corner where the wall has fallen away. Some of the joints have pulled apart and
some timbers are extensively degraded by woodworm. Externally, the exposed wall
plates at the corners are rotted and sections need to be replaced.
and stage area to main hall The hall floor is poorly
ventilated underneath, and under the stage it is very damp, resulting in
extensive wet rot and some dry rot, with air bricks partly blocked due to the
raised ground outside. In one corner you can put your hand through the
repairs across the two wings There is an extensive list:
pointing required to cracked walls, rotten external woodwork, broken gutters,
rotten window frames (e.g. the two large windows behind the stage) and some new
sills required to windows. The old stone facade to the manor house wing needs
pointing and work to stop raining-in. The roof to both wings have a limited
life and if finances permit full reroofing of the whole hall should be carried
stage in the main hall As well as the problems underneath, the
stage is in poor shape. Neither the spotlights nor the audio system work, the
curtains are in poor condition and there is a large amount of loose electrical
wiring. The stage has to be removed to facilitate the
repairs and treatment underneath.
else do we think needs to be done?
seems wrong to carry out a wide range of repairs and leave the main hall just
as it is. User groups have commented on poor lighting, inadequate heating,
insufficient storage and a tired and drab appearance generally. Therefore, we
have set out various suggestions for the renovation of the main hall and the
Basset Room. These include:
the middle section of the rear wall of the Basset Room so as to allow for
remodelling and modernising the toilets, a larger kitchen and a new fire
lighting, heating and insulation, with heating to the toilets and Basset Room.
the stage OR use of a stage block system, allowing for more versatile room
some windows; replacing all glazing with clear safety glass to improve
of the main hall and Basset Room
Some of these proposals are set out on the suggested floor plan of the main
hall on the next page.
views are welcome. Please let us know what you think!
can email comments to email@example.com, leave comments on the sheets in the
Manor Hall (box by kitchen) or use the comments box at the shop.
Narborough and the Management Committee
layout of main hall
facilitate remodelling of toilets and expansion of kitchen. The serving/bar
area is indicative - it shows what could be provided. The stage is shown as
removed, but with an example of a moveable system, shown here along the side
wall as an example.
The areas shown in different
colours representt new facilities. Each toilet area is outlined in a different
colour. This is all new work and replaces facilities that are totally
unsuitable for a hall serving up to 200 people
Manor Hall Trust Renewal and Refurbishment Project Outline of Interior works
REFLECTIONS NO. 64
It wasn't exactly 'Mad dogs and Englishmen go out in the midday sun', more a
case of flummoxed dogs and one Englishman out in the midsummer rain!
The cows were pretty intrigued too. And who could blame them? They were after
all observing a rather bizarre scene, one that had been the consequence of the
interception of precipitation - in other words, plants catching hold of rain
droplets which were destined for the root systems of the underworld.
I have always struggled with the word droplets when it comes to rain. It is too
complimentary in my view. But then rain is at the bottom of my weather list,
with easterly winds one place above it. Combine the two, so that it feels like
the North Sea is being endlessly pummelled into your cheeks [albeit salt free],
and I am not a happy bunny.
"Just get out in it, throw your hood back and keep going," I was told
by a walker last winter. "You will soon get used to the rain and even
come to enjoy it." So I tried it. And I didn't - on both counts.
I have. however. recently moved rain up one place and demoted easterly winds to
the bottom on account of my experience as the afore mentioned Englishman; for I
have come to realise that there is one situation when I enjoy personal
participation with precipitation. The key requisite is a spell of dry weather.
One that is just long enough for the soil to hint at cracking, for Lundy Island
to be forgotten behind a constant heat haze and for tractors to throw up dirt
particles so that they leave behind a thick trail of dust. With all three
requirements met it is time for the weather gods to do a bit of polishing. Cue
stage left, from the west, a plethora of wet grey dusters.
On the day in question, one such duster loomed ominously in the sky over
Bideford/Barnstaple Bay. It is a sight which I have often witnessed since
moving to Yelland, one that rarely stirs me into picking in the washing; for
more often than not, the duster rips itself in half and soaks the North Devon
peninsula and the inhabitants surrounding South Molton, respectively. The
meeting place of the Taw and Torridge estuaries always seems to escape.
But driving home, having walked the dogs near Bideford, I could see that on
this occasion Yelland was in for more than just a spit and polish. With a bit
of luck I could get back in time to pick in the washing. It was then, however,
that I made the irrational decision to let it all get wet and take a detour
Turning into a country lane, I headed up and then through Westleigh before
bringing my car to a halt at two farm gates where the hill reached its summit.
As I stepped out of the car I immediately noticed a clump of red campion in
the hedge-bank beside one of the gates, now fluorescent in the ever darkening
atmosphere. Beside the other gate occasional umbelifers of hogweed and a
solitary dog rose were struggling to stay
in an ever increasing wind. By now Appledore had vanished and soon both
estuaries were hidden behind rainfall. As the wind became gusty so the first
droplets arrived. Then came a few more. Moments later the rainfall was
constant - soon followed by the preordained deluge.
The resulting smell was intoxicating, none more so than from the hedge-banks, where,
through intervention, grasses such as black bent, cocksfoot and timothy had
held onto the falling precipitation. And by opening up their cells to allow
moisture to enter, they had let out their own unique heady aromas.
While the dogs and the cows looked on, I stood and enjoyed the foolhardiness of
being out in the midsummer rain.
WALK - 145
bored walk on the boardwalk
were heading for the boardwalk from Broadsands Car Park but first made a
favourite detour through a little damp meadow flanked by a spinney.
parking was restricted to one end of the former car park area, several small
clearings and the tracks leading from them have become very overgrown. We
pushed through the brambles and nettles and were rewarded by a flurry of common
blue butterflies with bright orange-brown small heaths among them.
was an array of ragged robins, southern marsh orchids and yellow flag irises.
Several of the female common blue butterflies were of the brown form which
resemble the brown argus with orange dots around the margin of the upper side,
but with a shading of blue close to the body.
As we cross the boardwalk we always look out for lizards
basking on the wooden slats, the least vibration and they disappear. There
are the less common and declining sand lizards on the Burrows but we have
to see them. When a common lizard seems greener than usual, I hope it might
be a sand lizard but it's only wishful thinking. There was yellow hay rattle
in flower, eyebright and a few seaside pansies. Linnets perched on bushes
along the way and I spotted a lone painted lady. This summer migrant is always
a welcome sight.
At the end of the boardwalk at the edge of the sands were sea stocks; woolly
grey stems and leaves and mauve flowers but no sign of the rare sea rocket.
sat on a lump of concrete at the site of the old lighthouse and looked across
to Irsha Street and Kipling Tors and a distant, hazy blue Hartland Point; a
flotilla of sailing boats.
bleached silver and forming beautiful shapes and textures lay on the sand.
Crow Point we were shocked to see the extent of erosion of the sand dunes but
it was around the corner on the edge of Broadsands that we eventually found one
sea rocket plant, a healthy looking specimen, its leaves a similar shape to
ragwort but shiny and fleshy.
along we looked in vain for the yellow horned poppy, the only example of it in
the whole area of the Burrows. It may have been lost to erosion.
notice by the White House warned that the path around Horsey Island had been
'compromised' due to erosion.
were some deep holes and dips which were not there before and by the end of the
summer through lack of use the nettles and brambles will have effectively
in early June, fragrant Rosa Rugosa with ox-eye daisies flanked the path.
Berrynarbor History Society
I am pleased to report that
this group is now up and running. We have just had our second meeting: a
gathering of keen, interested villagers, long-standing and recently arrived.
If you too are interested to investigate the past of our beautiful Domesday
village, then join us - the more the merrier.
Our broad study is our parish and the old buildings of this village. The fabric
and structure of our Manor Hall has recently been examined by expert
architectural archaeologists to determine its age: medieval rather than Tudor.
We thought it would be appropriate to add our findings to their research,
delving into its past, as it is and always has been, a prominent building in
We are having a summer break but re-grouping on Wednesday
September, 8.00 p.m. in The Globe. If you are intrigued and would like to know
more about your village, join us.
We are nearly at the end of another year - the time has flown! It has been an
action packed term and we are all ready for the holiday. As I write, Blueberry
Class (Year 3 and Year 4), together with Willow Class from West Down, are
enjoying a residential trip at Emercombe. They are sleeping in yurts, using
composting loos, building rafts and dens and learning about the natural
While Blueberry Class have been away, the rest of the school have hosted our
third annual Federation Day. The children and staff from West Down were
welcomed to Berrynarbor. The children enjoyed renewing friendships with friends
from the other school while taking part in a morning of problem solving and
team building activities and an afternoon of sports activities. Both schools
enjoyed a delicious picnic lunch in the sunshine, prepared and served by Mrs
Peach and her colleague,
Hazlehurst from West Down. Other highlights of this term have been the
Elderberry Class residential to Bristol, a whole school trip to see Essex
Dance, a visit from a hive of bees (yes the bees really did come into school
to visit us - along with their keeper Mr Barrett) and getting to know the new
children who will be joining us in September.
A few weeks ago we enjoyed our first community week - the normal timetable was
suspended but lots of useful learning went on. The aims of the week were to
give the children a greater understanding and appreciation of the community of which
they are a part, to get the children out into the community so that our
neighbours could meet and feel proud of the wonderful young people who attend
our village school, and to extend the opportunities for the children to
contribute positively to the community. The week started with the children
delivering questionnaires to the houses in the centre of the village. Many of
these questionnaires were returned and the children used them to find out about
the wealth of experience and expertise that people living in the village had.
Berrynarbor is a beautiful part of the world to live in, the children noticed
from the questionnaires that some people had lived in the village all their
lives, others had been born here, travelled the world and then returned and
others had moved here for a number of different reasons. Some residents of the
village came into school to be interviewed by the children and some children
went out to meet our neighbours in their homes. Other children visited Lee
Lodge and some older children took a turn at helping in the shop. A group of
children met Bishop Robert in the village and presented him with a book of
prayers that they had written. The children learnt more about the history of
the church, some climbed the bell tower and they explored the graveyard and
collected information about the families that had lived and died in the village
in the past. In this age of social media and 'online friends' we taught the
children about social etiquette and courtesy - how to greet someone, how to
make eye contact
talk confidently to someone that you are meeting for the first time, how to
behave politely in someone else's home, how to show respect to people and
property. The children made posters, wrote biographies and newspaper articles
and plotted 'village links' on a world map. The week ended with a celebration
afternoon when we invited our community to come to school to visit us. The
children baked cakes and scones, served tea and coffee, led guided tours of the
school and showed their visitors what they had learnt. Watching the children
enthusiastically welcome our neighbours to the school and proudly share their
work was wonderful and I should like to thank all those who gave their time so
generously to meet and speak to the children.
The children thoroughly enjoyed the week - the most talked about activity was
meeting and talking to our neighbours about their lives and hearing about how life
was in the past. Parents have told us that their children went home buzzing
about what they had learnt and the teachers and children all agree that we should
like to repeat the project next year as there is so much more we should like to
do - if you have any suggestions or would like to be involved next time -
please get in touch. If you would like to be part of our school and spend time
with the children helping with reading, craft work or gardening or simply
talking to the children over lunch please get in touch. Safeguarding checks
will be made and an induction will be given to volunteers. The children like
other adults to share their achievements and support them with their challenges
and they benefit hugely from people with the time to take an interest in their
lives. Life can be busy for us all but simple conversations and sharing the
wisdom of the past can make a real impact on the lives of children today. We
should love to work more closely with our community.
With a week to go before the end of term, we are still looking forward to our
traditional Year 6 water fight on the playground tomorrow after school and the
Years 5/6 show in the Manor Hall next week. On Saturday we will enjoy a
surprise tea party in the hall to say Thank You to Mrs Lucas for her many years
of service to the school. Mrs Lucas, the organiser of many Senior Dudes Meals,
Forest School and our much loved and respected Years 5/6 teacher will be
retiring at the end of this term. She ends her time at our school on a high
with a fantastic set of SAT's results and 'the most responsible group of
children' to be taken away on residential. Next week we shall also say thank
you and goodbye to Mrs Balment and our Year 6 children Dylan, Anna, William,
Lawrence, Alfie, Roker, Ellis, Indianna and Sam. We wish them all success and
happiness in the next chapter of their lives.
Carey - Headteacher
IN BLOOM & BEST KEPT VILLAGE
How lovely the village looks this summer. The warm weather has really brought
all the flowers to a peak, both the wild flowers in the hedgerows and gardens
and also the hanging baskets and tubs.
The Bloomers have been very busy cutting back, weeding and tidying up in
readiness for the R.H.S. Britain in Bloom judging on the 9th July. This year
is the 50th anniversary of this competition, so keep your fingers crossed that
we will get gold.
The Sterridge Valley Open Gardens in June were very successful. The Valley was
looking lovely and the gardens that opened were too. Many thanks to all the
garden owners for their hard work and many thanks to Judie and her helpers for
serving up such a lovely tea. Don't forget the Village Gardens are open on
the 7th September from 2.00 to 5.00 with teas at The Lodge. Let's hope the
weather is fine and we hope you will come along and support us. If you would
like to open your garden in September, please give me a call on 
Pineapple and Prune cake
I found this recipe in an Australian magazine a guest left behind, hence the
cup measurements. Intrigued I tried the recipe out using a mug and weighed
the amounts in the cups/mug to make it easier to follow. It makes a nice
moist cake and is another variation of vegetables, such as carrots, used to
make a cake.
golden caster sugar
teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
range eggs lightly beaten
coarsely grated peeled butternut squash (165g/6oz)
(90g/4oz) coarsely chopped ready to eat prunes
(90g/4oz) canned crushed pineapple well drained
dessertspoons of the pineapple syrup from the tin
tablespoons lemon juice 1-tablespoon water
Preheat oven to190ēC (170ēC fan oven). Grease an 8inch/20cm round
loose-bottomed cake tin and line the base with baking paper.
the flours, sugar and bicarbonate of soda into a mixing bowl. Add the oil
and eggs and mix together. Add the pumpkin, pineapple and prunes and stir
until well combined.
Spread the mixture into the prepared cake tin and bake for 45 to 50 minutes or
until a skewer comes out cleanly. While still hot, pour 2 dessertspoons of
the pineapple syrup over the cake. Leave to cool in the tin for half an hour
and then remove from the tin and finish cooling on a wire rack.
To ice the cake, sift the icing sugar into a small heatproof bowl, stir in the
butter and lemon juice and heat gently by placing the bowl over a small
saucepan of simmering water until the icing is soft enough to spread. If you
need to, add some of the water to loosen it, then cover the cooled cake.
'Nice cake Sheila!'
This photograph is of John Stewart [2nd left] landing at Ranville, France, to
defend Pegasus Bridge. He went in by the third wave of gliders. John was
tall but the angle of the camera makes the men look small!
who married my cousin Margaret Gove-Price, was born in West Point, Ireland.
His mother was determined he should follow her catholic tradition and join the
church. John was having none of it and took himself off and joined the Royal
Ulsters at the age of 16 years as a boy soldier.
saw action in China, India and Egypt before D Day. Michael and I visited
Ranville some time ago and found the people in the museum there very helpful.
joined the army at 18 and went into Belgium with Montgomery. She was
clerically trained and helped establish hospitals for the war injured. A
Berrynarbor girl, she and John married after the war and settled in Barnstaple.
& SHAKERS NO. 52
who gave future Kaiser Wilhelm a Bloody Nose!
This month we must congratulate Judie on achieving 25 years of editing our
popular newsletter, but my Mover and Shaker goes back even further - exactly
one hundred years since Alfie Price became famous!
Those of you born and bred in these 'ere parts no doubt know all about Alfie,
but we incomers hadn't heard of him [in my case] until an article appeared in
The Times on 20th April this year "How a Devon beach boy went to war with young
Kaiser". I found another article from a day earlier in the Mirror "Did a
British Boy who gave Kaiser Bill a bloody nose inadvertently start World War
One?" The Journal on 8th May followed with: "The lad who gave the Kaiser a bloody
I had to find more and Ilfracombe Museum was the obvious place to get
information. They were so helpful and gave me access to private letters and
newspaper cuttings, so in brief, here is what happened.
Alfie was born at 4 Hillsborough Terrace in 1864. His father, Philip Simpton
Price was a local carpenter, and he and his wife Ann later moved to Portsmouth.
In 1878, the future Kaiser Wilhelm came to Ilfracombe on holiday, staying at
the Ilfracombe Hotel. One day, perhaps out of boredom, he started aiming
stones at bathing machines on Rapparee beach. These were leased by Philip Price,
and Alfie, in charge of them at the time, saw the youth and shouted at him to
stop. The youth squared up to him and shouted,
"Do you know who I am?" Alfie later admitted that he did, but wasn't going to
"I don't care a dash who you are - stop chucking stones or it will be the worse
Prince Wilhelm was renowned to have a vicious temper and was so enraged, he
called Alfie a peasant and knocked him down with a rabbit punch. Alfie,
although only 15 and smaller than the 19-year old Prince, got up and hit him
back. A real punch-up started, won in the end by Alfie who floored the youth,
bloodying his nose.
At this point, the Prince's tutor stopped the fight and is reported to have
given Alfie thirty shillings [about £150 in today's money] to keep his mouth
shut about this humiliating scrap. Prince Wilhelm was not pleased. In spite of
the hush money, the story soon circulated around the town, but was then
forgotten until 1914.
1916, a poem written by W.H. Coates [a distant relative, and Ilfracombe
ironmonger] entitled "Why the Kaiser Hates England - or What Happened at
Rapparee" confirmed the story.
must be true. Some years later the author handwrote on the back of a copy of
his poem "In conversation with a lady a few years ago - since writing the
doggerel - she informed me that in her young days she was bookkeeper at Ilfracombe
Hotel and that she remembered the Prince K.B. coming in to the hotel on the
memorable morning holding his poor nose."
The poem was printed in large quantities, sold for charity and sent to the
troops to cheer them up. It's a great spoof and you may read it all on Google
by putting in "Why the Kaiser Hates England", but here's a bit of it:
friend! You'll rue this day
what you've done t'mine poor nose
word I'll make you pay,
build big ships and gurt big guns,
one day I will come
blow this place t' smithereens
After the excitement of his teenage years, Alfie settled down to married life. He
firstly married Mary Jane Trentham who was 6 years older than he was and
together they ran the Capstone Restaurant. In winter Alfie loved to play 'Don',
a card game I've never heard of. He became quite agitated when other players
didn't concentrate. This must have caused a few marital upsets. Mary was quite
fond of the bottle [whereas Alfie was a strict T.T.] and sometimes fell asleep
in the middle of the hand. Alfie was not well pleased! His other great love
was at Christmas singing carols [or curls as he called them].
Mary died in 1913. He then married Susan Ley and together they ran a boarding
house in Hillsborough Terrace.
One letter written by Alf's second cousin remembers visiting Alf at Christmas
1921 with his mother. Alf's first request was for a curl.
Alfie died on 31st August 1923 and it is said that on his deathbed he boasted
to his friends that his greatest achievement was inflicting a bloody nose on
As for Kaiser Bill, in 1918 he was stripped of his titles and fled to Holland
in exile. He failed to persuade Hitler to reinstate the monarchy and died in
1941 aged 82.
With hindsight, there may have been another reason why the Kaiser had a grudge
against England. Before his birth, his mother, Victoria [but known as Vicky to
avoid confusion with her mother, Queen Victoria] was having a difficult time. Queen
Victoria sent her own doctor to officiate. During the birth the doctor
dislocated the baby's left arm. This wasn't noticed for three days by which
time damage had been done and the arm grew 3 inches shorter than the right one,
with a hand that was partly paralysed. This was thought to be the reason that
the Kaiser always hated the English but perhaps they didn't know about the fracas
Oh and if you want to know more about Alf Price, he will feature in the
exhibition at the Museum commemorating the centenary of the start of 'the war
to end all wars' coming in August.
thanks to Sara Hodson and her team at Ilfracombe Museum
BERRYNARBOR - VIEW NO. 150
Departure of Territorials
These two photographic postcards of the Departure of the Territorials from
Ilfracombe were taken by Phillipse & Lees, the Ilfracombe Photographers, on
the 8th August 1914.
They show how virtually the entire population turned out to give the Ilfracombe
Territorials, No1 H.B. Devonshire Royal Garrison Artilllery [RGA] a rousing
stopped in the High Street so that the Reverend Johnson of the Parish Church
could give his blessing to the five Officers and all the Territorials from the
raised embankment opposite Pedlar's.
proceedings had been opened with an address given by General Williams R.E. of
the Indian Army to the soldiers who had received mobilisation only three days
The mounted Ilfracombe Town Crier, Robert Martin, was in attendance, He lead
the procession from the High Street up to Ilfracombe Railway Station, where the
Territorials gave assistance in loading their 36 horses into five livestock
trucks provided by Southern Railway. The Battery consisted of 5 officers and
125 men, plus 4 guns
wagons. They left Ilfracombe Station at 6.00 p.m. bound for Plymouth and then
war. A further 29 horses from Lynton joined them at Barnstaple.
The second picture shows how heavy rain started just as they started to march
off to the station behind the military band.
Cottage, July 2014
This postcard of an ivy-clad Rectory is as I remember it as a small child.
There is a large glass-house in the garden.
two cottages are Rectory Cottages, now Wild Violets. They are in the area of
the original parsonage. The roof in the bottom right must be the old
Temperance Hall which was used for social events and meetings before the Manor
Hall was built.
must have been facilities for washing at the Temperance Hall because my
great-grandmother and grandmother did the laundry there for the Rev.
Churchill's family at the Rectory. In fact the white spots at the bottom of
the picture are probably clothes drying on the bushes.
also did the washing for the Collins family at Widmouth House. Dad and Aunty
Lorna had to deliver the laundry to Widmouth before going to school on Tuesday
morning, whatever the weather!
to the village [as well as others] may not be aware of the Village Book Club.
The group meets about every 4 to 6 weeks but for practical reasons - the number
of copies of the book to read
available from the library service, the time for each member to express their
pros and cons for each book and meeting in members' homes - the number needs to
be about 15. However, with comings and goings within the village, places
to join the group do occur. So if you would like to join or have a 'taster'
session or learn more, please do contact Wendy on 883170