WEATHER OR NOT
Time marches on and one third of the
year has already gone by with a real mixed bag of weather.
When I was writing the last article, Storm
Freya was out in the Atlantic and due to arrive in early March. Here in the valley it was not that bad, I
recorded a wind speed of 47 mph from the SSW on the 3rd [down at Chivenor 68
mph and over at Swansea 76mph] 6.6mm of rain and sleet fell, the barometer
dropped to 988.2 mbars along with a temperature of 5.5°C. The main belt of snow went well to the north
of England. The next storm winding itself up in the Atlantic was Gareth, the
main part of this arrived on the 12th with a maximum wind speed of 32mph from
the south, 22.2mm of rain, barometric pressure 1003.8mbars and a wind chill of
2.9°C. No more storms arrived but
towards the end of the month the overnight temperatures were much lower, the
29th produced the lowest temperature of the month at 0.2°C.
The main figures for the month were: Rainfall at 104.8mm, Temperatures Max. 14.3°C
on the 27th [this is below average for March], the highest barometer reading
was 1037.7mbars on the 28th and lowest 981.9mbars on the 6th. The total sunshine hours came in at 95.21
which was on the higher side of average.
I don't think this March managed
to break any records.
The first few days in April started off
cool with some rain, we then went through a period of drier weather with
reasonable daytime temperatures but overnight the mercury fell leaving us with
light ground frosts on five consecutive mornings. By the time we reached Easter weekend, the
weather was very good and on the 22nd we had our warmest day of 2019 at 23.9°C,
our lowest temperature was on the 12th at -0.8°C. On the 25th storm Hannah arrived leaving us
with the wettest day of April at 11.2mm and a top wind speed on the 27th of
38mph from the south. Sunshine hours
totaled 126.70 which is about average.
Barometer readings for the month were a high of 1031.2mbars on the 20th
and a low of 985.8mbars on the 4th. The
total rainfall for April was 60.4mm which gives us a total of 274.2mm so far
for 2019. This makes it a very dry start
for the year.
The trees and plants are all growing
well along with the grass and unfortunately the weeds, and as I write this
report there is a threat of overnight temperatures around freezing, so I will
have to be careful with my tender plants!
I live in hopes of a summer like last
year but only time will tell.
MATTHEW PHILIP BROWN
15.8.1981 - 9.4.2019
It was with profound shock and sadness that the
village learnt that Matthew, Chris and Phil Brown's eldest son, had died
suddenly whilst on business in Qatar on the 9th April, 2019. Our thoughts are with Chris and Phil and all
the family at this time of unbelievable sadness.
living in Denmark, Matthew's funeral took place here in North Devon on 13th May
and Chris and Phil would like to thank everyone for joining them to say
farewell, for the many messages of sympathy, cards, flowers and for the
generous donations for Young Epilepsy.
is anyone who would like to support this very worthwhile charity, donations in
Matthew's memory may be sent to A.D. Williams, 31 Portland Street, Ilfracombe,
15.10.47 - 17.4.19
A friend to many in the village and a supporter of our
Newsletter, it was sad to learn that Ray had passed away peacefully, at home,
with his family on the 17th April.
thoughts are with Lynn, Martin and Roy and all the family at this time of
Although Ray was proud to be a Berrynarbor
boy, having many relatives in the village, he first lived temporarily in
Ilfracombe - where he was also proud to be a 'Quayite' - for the first months
of his life, while his parents were living with his grandparents in Rupert's
Wood Terrace, his grandfather having a gentlemen's hair dressing shop in Broad
Street. When he was a few months old, the
family moved out to Berrynarbor, where they lived in the village, next to the
Ray was also quite proud of the fact
that before he was three years old, he walked alone from the village, without
being spotted, up to the Sandy Cove Hotel, to see his grandparents, who were
caretakers there, and had to be brought home by car.
Later the family moved up to Croft Lee,
where his sisters Lin, and eventually Debbie joined them.
A happy, carefree childhood, playing
with his sisters and friends, getting into mischief, and wandering in the
countryside observing nature followed, which led to his great knowledge of the
countryside. He also spent many happy hours and days
fishing off the rocks at Broadsands with family and friends.
Ray left Combe Martin Secondary School,
aged fifteen, just as the savage winter of 1962-63 was beginning. This delayed him starting work for a while, so
more exploring and adventuring took place.
One of his enduring memories was
walking on snow drifts as high as the hedges.
He finally started work for Harris, the
builder, as a carpenter's apprentice in the workshop in Combe Martin, making
coffins. During his building career he
worked on housing estates around Ilfracombe and all around North Devon; working on Ilfracombe Comprehensive School,
as it was called then, helping convert the Grammar School into the Junior
School and spent a long time helping to build the North Devon District
Hospital. He was proud of the work that
he did there, and just a few weeks ago was able to point out features that he
had built. Although the work was hard,
he made many friends and enjoyed the camaraderie.
It was during these years Ray and Lynn
met, famously, at Combe Martin Seaside, and were married soon after. Ray moved into Ilfracombe, where he and Lynn
were later joined by their much-loved boys, Martin and Roy. A long and happy family life followed.
the hospital was completed in the late '70's, work became hard to find and
having bought a boat, Ray spent time fishing for lobster, crabs and mackerel
and supplementing his income crewing on pleasure craft. He then worked sub-contracting
as a carpenter, working for some time in the workshop in the Sterridge Valley.
In his spare time in the 80's he built
his beautiful big boat, Thor, in Chris and Barbara Gubb's farm yard in
Berrynarbor. She was sold soon after she
was finished, and eventually found her way to Padstow where she appeared
several times in TV programmes, with the likes of Rick Stein. She had been renamed Blue Fox, and was still
going strong in January this year, when she was up for sale, in Rock.
The mid-80's brought Morris dancing
into his life when son Roy started playing for the Cloggies. When the family saw what fun there was to be
had, Ray and Roy joined the Muddiford and Milltown Morris Men and Lynn joined the
Ilfracombe Red Petticoats. This made
such a change to their lives, making dozens, if not hundreds, of friends and
taking them to many places they would never have visited otherwise. Later, with friends, they started a Playford
side, Playford being old English country dancing, and yet more happy times
followed. Ray was also a founder member
of the Oggle band - more fun and laughs!
Later, Cotswold and North West Morris evolved into Border, with ragged
jackets and blackened faces. Happy Days!
Retirement from Morris ended after
twenty-six happy years, but not giving up on all things folksy, Ray continued
with the Wassailing tradition that he had revived in North Devon, and where the
apple crops had flourished. Always
being an 'apple man', Ray planted a little orchard in his back garden. The blossom is just starting to bloom.
The family had moved to Bicclescombe
Park Road in 1987 and Ray took a great interest in the park itself, eventually
partly helping him to be awarded a Pride in Ilfracombe award.
He was the main instigator for getting
the mill wheel restored, spending many hours in research and choosing the wood
for the buckets. He was very happy to see it completed last year. He also supported the community tea rooms
and for several Christmases played Father Christmas where at least one family
thought he was the real Santa!
Family was always paramount to
Ray, always being there when needed. In
his and Lynn's long and happy marriage, he was always there for her and their
boys. Always there for his father in his final
illness, and patiently looking after his mother-in- law in her last days. Looking out for his sisters, he was always
ready with care and advice. The love
and respect that all the family, nieces, nephews, great nieces and great
nephews have poured out for him in these last days have been such a wonderful
comfort and he would be, and indeed was, very proud of them.
his illness, Ray was so brave, never really complaining, his thoughts and
worries were for Lynn such that he planned his funeral, relieving the family of
any decision making. Well done Ray!
He would be so very proud of all the
wonderful words, messages and comments Lynn and the family have received since
his passing. So, thank you everyone and
thanks to all who came to the funeral and gave him the send-off he deserved.
See Ray's articles in the following Newsletters:
collaborative, motivated, self-reflective learners, through excellent teaching
Give every child the opportunity
to become self-assured, confident and compassionate; able to have a fulfilled
SIR IAN McKELLEN AT THE LANDMARK
25th was a special date for North Devon with the reopening, after more than two
years, of The Landmark Theatre by Sir Ian McKellen performing his eightieth
birthday one man show.
of the competition for tickets, the allocation of seats had been determined by
a ballot and the sense of occasion was heightened by the red carpet and being
handed a glass of 'fizz' on entering the theatre.
warm and enraptured audience, Ian McKellen spoke of his childhood in Lancashire
and early experiences with theatre as a school boy.
anecdotes of his stage and film career with superb comic timing, recited poetry
and speeches from Shakespeare and moved about the stage with energy and grace.
mentioned that he had never been to a theatre with such a 'glamorous' setting
and during the interval had slipped out to enjoy a view of the sea.
whole performance was a tremendous tour de force, a truly memorable occasion.
left, there was Sir Ian standing in the middle of the foyer with a bucket
collecting donations in aid of the theatre!
ST. PETER'S CHURCH
large congregation from the churches of Berrynarbor, Pip & Jim's and Combe
Martin, together with civic leaders, gathered in Pip & Jim's Church on
Monday 13th May for the Installation of Rev Peter Churcher, who will be our new
Priest in Charge. The joyful service
was led by the Bishop of Exeter, The Right Reverend Robert Atwell, together
with Archdeacon Rev. Dr. Mark Butchers and many local clergy.
At long last, following another
extended interregnum, we can look forward to welcoming Rev. Peter to our church
in the very near future.
Following this wonderful service, a
superb buffet was ready to welcome the whole congregation in the Church Hall. A
sincere thank you to the ladies from all three churches for preparing the
A special Joint Service to welcome and
meet Reverend Peter and his family was also held at Pip & Jim's on Sunday
19th May. The service was followed by a
bring-and-share lunch which, again in the church hall opposite.
Our well-attended Easter Sunday Service
was led by Rev. George Billington. Berrynarbor Choir sang the beautiful negro
spiritual Steal Away, and the joyful service concluded with Rev. George handing
out chocolate crème eggs to all the congregation! Yum, Yum!
Our Annual Gift Day will be held on
Wednesday, 19th June at the church lych gate, and it is hoped that once again
Berrynarbor School will be involved during the day. We are
not quite sure what fun activity will be arranged since our new Vicar, Peter
Churcher, may wish to be involved with the School in some way and we shall keep
everyone informed nearer the time.
The PCC have started the ball rolling
with regard to repairs to the church by obtaining quotations from specialist
building/conservation companies, with the necessary approval of the Diocese of
Exeter's Building and Architectural Department, and will keep everyone posted
as to the outcome. In the fullness of time there will be the
necessary erection of scaffolding around the perimeter of the church with
safety for building workers and the public very much in mind.
At our recent AGM, our PCC Treasurer
Margaret Sowerby stood down, and so we urgently need a replacement to join us as
soon as possible. Margaret will be happy to spend time necessary
to explain the workings of the Treasurer's role. Margaret, together with valued help from her
husband Roger, has modernised much of the recording and filing of data, which
will be invaluable to the new applicant. The PCC wish to thank
Margaret and Roger for their hard work and commitment over the last few years.
Choir continues under the direction of Graham Lucas, and Choir practice is on
Monday evenings commencing at 7.30 p.m.
We welcome anyone who enjoys singing to come along and join us!
We continue to pray for those who are
unwell in this Parish. especially Carol Lucas, Viv and Brian Fryer and Jill
It is with much regret that the
Friendship Lunch, held at The Globe on the last Wednesday of the month, is to
come to an end. For some time now the
numbers attending this lunch have fallen to such a low level that it is no
longer sustainable. We wish to thank Jill McCrae for helping to
organise this happy get-together over so many years.
FROM THE VILLAGE SHOP & POST OFFICE
Village Crest on Shop Souvenirs
Berrynarbor's village crest,
which appears on the ironwork signs as you enter the village, is to be used by
the Village Shop on a number of souvenir items. To start with the crest will appear on mugs
and re-usable water bottles, with a view to extending its use onto other items
in the future.
"Visitors to our village are always
looking for something to take home," says Shop Manager Debbie Thomas, "Either
to remind themselves of their stay here, or to take something for their friends
and family. So, we are very excited to
be able to use the crest to promote the village through the shop."
Over the Christmas and Easter holidays
the gift packs of local produce have also proved extremely popular and these
have now been extended to include new items. As an
extra service to locals and visitors alike, the shop will even pack and post
these gifts for you.
Many thanks to all those who attended
the village Plant Sale and a special thanks to our small army of helpers on the
day. The shop is stocking excellent quality compost
at a really competitive price so that you can pot-on those wonderful plants you
bought at the sale!
Easter Raffle Draw
lucky winner of the Easter hamper was Chris Pocock (pictured). Second ticket
out of the hat belonged to Fenella Boxall who won the Easter Bunny and
Sunday Opening Hours
a review of its footfall, the shop is making a small adjustment to its Sunday
opening hours. It will now be open from 9.00 a.m. until 12 noon. These hours
will be reviewed and extended during the peak season.
NEWS FROM BERRYNARBOR PRE-SCHOOL
a first taste of education
We are now well into the summer term. We welcome our new families who have joined
us in this term and hope the children enjoy their learning journey with us.
We have had to say farewell to Sophie who left us at the end
of last term. On behalf of all the
staff, committee and the children we should like to wish Sophie all the best
for the future and to thank her for all her work and care.
Last term the children enjoyed our Maths topic and are now
using Maths concepts, language and recognising numbers within their play which
is lovely to see and hear.
This term we are focusing on Reading and Writing based around
the Early Writing Programme using sounds, phonics, rhyming and letter
recognition. Children are encouraged to
look at books independently and listen to stories. These stories will include The Very Hungry
Caterpillar which celebrates its 50th anniversary this year and Going Through The
Jungle, alongside other stories that the children choose. We'll find fun ways to develop the children's
fine motor skills, strengthening their fingers and encouraging them to mark
make before learning to form letter shapes.
Activities will be both
indoors and outside. This is all based
on the child's individual stage of learning. Don't forget that your child can also learn
by watching you, looking at books together and modelling writing at home.
Other learning areas include looking at our environment,
animals, insects as well as different occupations such as doctors, vets and
shop keepers. You may see us in the village going on nature walks exploring and
observing the changes that occur in nature.
We plan to visit Exmoor Zoo to extend
our learning and to see the many the different animals and look at their
you to all who supported our quiz night at The Globe last term. We raised a total of £227.00 which was
fantastic and fun was had by all.
have again been supported by parents, friends and the community in raising
funds through the clothes recycling scheme 'Bags2School' and wish to thank all
We are taking bookings for the Autumn Term
and sessions are filling up fast. Call
07932 851052 or e-mail email@example.com
for more information. Sessions are
shown in the Manor Hall Diary later in this issue.
the staff, Sue, Karen, Lynne and Ellie
MANOR HALL TRUST
After a long 5 weeks the Hall is now
back up and running. The builders did a
great job of keeping to their schedule despite finding more and more joists and
paneling that needed replacing. The
decorating was a true community effort and once again proved what lovely people
we have in our village who are willing to give up so much of their spare time
to help make it such a great place to live. Special thanks must go to Martin, Lloyd, Alan
E, Alan H, Rob, Ray, Alison and Tee who spent many an hour wielding a paint
brush. The result is fantastic and all
the lovely comments we have received are very much appreciated. On Bank Holiday Sunday we had an enjoyable
afternoon tea saying thank you to our user groups for their patience during the
closure. The hall looked really pretty
and a big thank you must go to Caroline, who has just moved into the village, who
made nearly all the cakes - quite an initiation!
Our next target to paint is the Bassett
Room and if you would like to get involved and help us with this then please
let any of the trustees know. Recently, we have kindly been donated two table
tennis tables and so we should like to start a table tennis club. If you think you would be interested in
joining this, please get in touch.
This summer we plan to have a fete [date
to be announced shortly] with games and stalls as a fundraiser. If you would like to have a table at this
event please contact us for details.
We shall be holding our AGM on
Wednesday, 26th June, 7.00 p.m. in the Manor Hall. Everyone is welcome - come and support your
Manor Hall and the Trustees.
Julia [Chair] 882783Alison [Bookings]
882782, Alan [Treasurer] 07905445072
RURAL REFLECTIONS - 88
Henry Olonga was the
first black cricketer to represent Zimbabwe. Born in 1976, he is also the
youngest player to represent his country having made his international debut at
the age of eighteen. An effective
bowler who could take a cluster of wickets at key times, he spearheaded
Zimbabwe's first overseas Test victory. But he is best remembered for the brave
protest he made alongside his team mate Andy Flower when they wore black
armbands in a World Cup match, 'mourning the death of democracy in our beloved
Zimbabwe'. The act not only ended
Olonga's Test career; a warrant was also
issued for his arrest on charges of treason, an act that forced him to go into
hiding for a short time. These days he
is a cricket commentator and singer.
Less well-known is his choice for a favourite ground. Some may regard it as surprising, considering
the innumerable amphitheaters in which he would have played around the globe
during his cricketing career. Capetown's Newlands Cricket Ground would be one
such example, boasting as it does Table Mountain for a dramatic backdrop. Instead, Olonga elects an English cricket
ground in a setting with an attribute, though not as imposing as Table Mountain,
is still to the eye just as stunning. Indeed, whilst Table Mountain stands at 1085
metres (3559 feet), this feature is a mere 62 metres (203 feet) in height. But without its placement within the vista,
one can be certain the ground would not be Olonga's favourite venue -
especially as he only ever played there once in a game where his performance
was indifferent at best. But this did
not stop him picking Worcester's New Road cricket ground, where play is
overseen by its beautiful cathedral.
Olonga described it as one of the prettiest grounds he had
ever seen. It was in his view the only major sports arena that had not quite
graduated from being a little village venue, describing the cathedral as the
cherry on the cake. No doubt unaware,
his anomaly could not have been more appropriate. For Worcestershire's home ground is renowned
throughout the cricketing world for its Ladies' Pavilion; an institution
revered wherever the game is played and with a reputation that causes
Worcestershire's supporters, wherever they are, to be asked, "Do the
ladies still serve their afternoon teas with their delicious homemade
Olonga was clearly captured by the ground's surrounding
views, its location by the River Severn, its warm and friendly atmosphere, its
cheerful brews and homemade sponges, scones and pastries; all facets that led Olonga to portray the
ground as quintessentially English.
It is an interesting definition especially when one
considers his use of the term quintessentially, for it is a word used to
emphasise what is the most typical example of something. So why did he choose such a description? Maybe the answer is in his earlier
representation of it being like a little village venue.
So just for the moment let's lift the
pitch up from New Road and lower it into an English rural valley. Imagine that on one side of the ground runs a
country lane, beyond which is a steep woodland of beech and oak trees. It is
June and they are now in full leaf.
On the other side of the pitch runs not
the River Severn but a wide stream with waters that can be heard tumbling over
rocks and boulders all the while a match is being played. Beyond the river the hillside opposite rises
more gently. It is speckled with
cottages displaying either slate or thatch roofs.
On the peak of the hill stands not a
cathedral but a Norman church, its square tower overseeing the day to day
movements of its parishioners whilst at the foot of the valley is the village's
lone pub, The Bat and Ball.
Poplar trees line the far end of the
ground whilst the end nearest the pub sites the pavilion and scoreboard. The umpires hear the church bell chime one
o'clock, allow the bowler to complete his over, consult, check the pavilion's
clock against that of the church and call "Time, gentlemen".
Rather than the presence of Worcester's world-famous
tea ladies, a couple of villagers are serving a selection of ham salad, cheese
and pickle or egg and cress sandwiches, followed by fresh strawberries, scones
and, of course, tea. Now that's what I
call quintessentially English! Enjoy
A PERSONAL LETTER FROM JOE TUCKER
Devon District Councillor
accept my sincere thanks and appreciation for the very warm welcome I received
when visiting Berrynarbor during the election campaign.
an honour and privilege to be representing you for the next
4 years, and I assure you that I shall give 100%
support to my duties as your District Councillor.
my election campaign there were issues brought to my attention which I shall
discuss with the Parish Council and District Council to try and resolve. I should greatly appreciate if you would
contact me direct if you require my help or assistance with any issue you may
visits to Berrynarbor over the election period, one of the main concerns
regarding Berrynarbor was why you were removed from the Combe Martin ward and
placed in the Marwood ward.
answer is: The decision to carry out a
review of North Devon District Council ward boundaries was not made by the District
Council but by the Local Government Boundary Commissioner. A review is carried out when population
changes have occurred resulting in an unexpectable proportion of the wards
having too high a number of electors per councillor. The review must take account of local issues
and must also plan population growth and changes for the immediate future.
reviewing the boundaries, the Local Government Boundary Commission invites the District
Council to submit its own proposals. Prior
to doing this, the District Council consulted a number of times with Parish Councils.
LGBC considered the District Council's plan, visited the area, and came up with
recommendations which were again passed out with consultation with the
parishes. The LGBC then made the final
report and the conclusion of that came into force at the recent local
understand and share your concerns but can assure you that I shall do
everything to ensure that Berrynarbor and the Marwood ward is a success, and
will receive a comprehensive representation from myself and the District Council.
shall be visiting Berrynarbor on a regular basis so do not hesitate to contact
me if you require a personal visit.
e-mail is firstname.lastname@example.org and my telephone number is  328890.
BERRYNARBOR WINE CIRCLE
I put my nose in a glass, it's like tunnel vision…every bit of mental
is focused on that wine.
M. Parker, Jr. (a U.S. wine critic)
I have to admit to drinking wine as a teenager, but then I
can blame my dear father. He came home
one evening with a bottle of white wine and said that it would be good for us
to taste it because wine was becoming the thing to drink with your evening
meal. I shall never forget that tasting,
it was Entre Deux Mers! I've learned a
bit and drunk a bit since then!
Nigel Pound, Radio Devon's Wine Wizard taught me, and I
suspect others, more during his excellent April presentation. He has sold his esteemed Totnes Wines'
business, so all of his time is devoted, now, to his wine consultancy, here and
abroad. His tasting trips sound fun and
journeys of liquid education! He says
choosing a good wine is easy. Once his
nose is over that opened bottle, he asks himself: "Is it well made? Is it tasty?
Does it suit my palate?"
When we, and I mean the Adam duo, drink a white wine, it is
often a chilled Sauvignon Blanc and I know numerous others who choose the
same. We do like others, but it tends
to be SB. We started with one from
Cotes de Gascogne. Animated Nigel
stated enthusiastically, "This should be
an aperitif." He's right, it was a
great aperitif. Acidity ruins food! Drink with nibbles. White wine with food should be grassy and
herby, not gooseberries.
I've heard people say 'Can't stand Chardonnay'. I know I've said I don't like it and I know
it makes my mouth wince; it reminds me
of chemicals, others say it's buttery.
Chardonnays can be two things: oaked or unoaked and there is a huge difference. Nigel treated us to a single vineyard,
single vintage Chardonnay, or Bourgogne Blanc, from the Domaine de Rochebin
Clos St Germain. He only makes 600
bottles of this. It was lovely. It
was a 2017, 12.5% and £15, the dearest of the night. I've tasted unoaked Chardonnays before, but
I won't be generalising again and saying "I don't like Chardonnay 2, but I will
say "I like unoaked Chardonnay!"
Here's another Nigel tip:
Don't bother buying anything under £8. You're wasting your money. Wine at this price is moved around a lot and
moving it means sulphites and, of course, you're paying tax on this! Sulphur gives you the headaches, but to keep
wine, it needs sulphur, otherwise it would oxidise. Wine can be given up to four doses of
sulphur, because of its process and transportation, but if you see 'Bottled on
Estate', it only has one dose of sulphur!
Geoff liked all the reds, which is unusual, as reds can
trigger a migraine, so he sticks to whites;
however, Calmel-Joseph are consultants.
Nigel told us: "They make good wines
in other people's vineyards. They make
the wine." Their Vieux Carignan, Cotes
de Brian, was a hit with most or all.
It was 2017, 14.5% and just a tenner.
The Brians among us loved it too and the 'old' is due to this wine being
pure Carignan vines that were planted in 1890.
I don't know all
there is to know about wine. I like
drinking it with my meal, as a chilled aperitif with or without friends on a
summer's evening and tasting new ones, previously unknown, at our Wine Circle. I like it to be interesting enough to learn
more. Jancis Robinson is synonymous
with wine. I used her website to
investigate Carignan. She says: Carignan
is a curious red wine grape. It's
planted worldwide and is the single most common vine variety planted in the
world's most important wine producer - France; however, Merlot, at the end of
the 20th century superseded it and most wine drinkers have never heard of
it. I hadn't, but I have now and I
enjoyed drinking it!
Wine is inspiring and adds
greatly to the joy of living.
The Wine Circle ran amok while the cat, sorry, that's the
Chairman, was away! We didn't have our usual May AGM as a result
and the Treasurer was seen relaxing . . . oh, yes, and his table won both
On a serious note, Members' Choices provided the finalé to
our 2018-19 season. Each couple provided their choice of wine for
whatever reason: bubbles and reds
appeared to be the favourites.
Our table began with a pink fizz: Langlois Brut Rosé, a Cremant de Loire, 12.5%
and pure Cabernet Franc. Everybody
enjoyed its freshness, very drinkable. Purchased
from Bray Valley Wines, it should retail at between £10-£15. Three good reds followed: a French Merlot-Cabernet minus sulphites, a
trophy-winning French Cabernet Sauvignon and a Spanish Campo-Vieja Rioja. We
ended with a 14% Italian silk: a Nero Oro: Sicily's Black Gold. It was
delicious, probably because it was an Appassimento, meaning that grapes are
left on the vine until they raisin or are air-dried after picking. Result: the grapes' sugar is concentrated and
raises the alcohol producing a more complex, stronger wine. Majestic's
are selling this for £9.99.
This season has finished; however, we restart at 8.00 p.m. on Wednesday,
October 16th in our re-decorated and very smart-looking Manor Hall. We
managed to fill the enlarged area with laughter, but there's always plenty of
space for new members!
- Promotional Co-ordinator & Secretary
NEWS FROM THE PRIMARY SCHOOL
We have a lot to look forward to this term and hope that the
lovely sunny weather we are currently having will continue.
Our KS1 children are learning about the life cycle. They currently have caterpillars awaiting to
make cocoons, eggs in an incubator and frogspawn. Spring
really is an exciting season with everything bursting into life!
Our Y3/4 children recently travelled to the Roman Baths in
Bath and are now looking forward to their residential trip to Beam House.
As we write, our Year 5 and 6 children are sitting their
SATS exams. They are all doing an
amazing job! After this week they will all be able to relax
and enjoy starting to learn the script for their production in June.
After such a successful meal for the Senior Dudes, Years 5
and 6 students will host a meal for their parents. They
will spend the day preparing the meal and then dress up and serve in the
They also enjoyed their residential to London. It is
a great experience; seeing a show, travelling on the underground and visiting the
sights of the city.
As we move further into the term, our KS2 children will have
the exciting opportunity to see a performance by the BBC Orchestra and a
trip for Y3/4 to the Mix Festival. This is a large musical event where schools
have the opportunity to listen to and take part in musical workshops.
Sports Day is just around the corner and in the coming weeks
the children will be busy practising.
We have our PTFA Summer Fayre on the 5th July. We should love to see members of the community
there. Please keep an eye out for posters with more
We are also planning a Wish Fish display for which the
Village Shop have kindly given us space.
The Wish Fishes' scales will show items that the school can use to
enhance the curriculum - our PTFA hope that parents and friends of the school
will take a scale and donate the items listed.
We already have a very generous
donation of some computing peripherals but other scales will list smaller items
- for example the ingredients needed to make playdough - or things that we should
like help making, for example outdoor cushions for a reading den.
It has been a busy year with lots of positive
improvements. Our new school uniform and federation logo was
part of our work on developing a strong ethos and vision for our schools. This vision and associated values have started
to embed and we are very proud of what the children have achieved. Our
teachers are busy making plans for next year which involve more subject
specific teaching for KS2 children and hopefully more opportunities for links
with our local community. If you'd like to get involved with school life
please let us know. We welcome volunteers and can organise the
necessary safeguarding checks and induction training.
From the staff and pupils, we wish
everyone a safe and happy summer. Sue Carey - Headteacher
Vision and Values
today, oceans tomorrow"
the best that we can be; committed to making a difference.
A holistic curriculum which
engages and excites through creativity and curiosity. Opening windows onto the world.
The West Berry Family -
to broaden horizons and
constantly improve the outcomes
for each of our children
Hope Determination Perseverance
Calm Inner Strength Flourish
BERRY IN BLOOM & BEST KEPT VILLAGE
As we move from spring into early summer, the
Berry in Bloom team shift up a gear. The spring bulbs and bedding have been removed
ready for planting out the summer flowers. We have been given the 22nd July for the
Britain in Bloom judging and there is lots to do but luckily we have a good
team of helpers.
The area where the septic tank is next to
the shop in the car park had become very overgrown and weedy but it's amazing
what a man and a tractor can do! We have cleared it and will replant the area. Likewise, we are planning to remove a dead
tree at the Manor Hall car parking area and cut back and tidy the hedge when
the bird nesting season is over at the end of July.
litter picks have continued and new 'pickers' are always welcome.
summer, on the 11th August, we hope to have a fund-raising Tea on the Lawn
afternoon at the Old Rectory, kindly hosted by Claire and Jamey Singer and
family. Please look out for our posters
Once again, we thank
everyone who supports us.
'Wot no cake!'
not a cake recipe this time but a further request for the easy raw cauliflower
salad that I often take to friends' BBQ s, which appeared in the newsletter a few
bunch fresh coriander
[either full fat or light]
from our Shop, the pickle is a vital ingredient]
the outer leaves of the cauliflower and chop into small pieces. You can include most of the stalk unless it
is too tough. Chop the spring onions
into small pieces and include most of the green stalks. Chop up the coriander and include the stalks.
Place everything you have
chopped in a large bowl and mix about four to six tablespoons of mayonnaise and
two tablespoons of the Patak aubergine pickle.
The consistency should be like a potato salad but the amount of pickle
and mayonnaise depends on your own taste.
If you want to make this lighter use
half mayonnaise, half natural yogurt or quark.
forward to sunny yummy BBQ days
WEARE GIFFARD HALL
24th April, a rather special day for me.
For the first time I was going on one of Judie's outings. A trip to the manor house at Weare Giffard
with coffee and cakes in the Holy Trinity church afterwards.
journey was spent wondering how to pronounce Giffard - a hard or soft G? I think we came to the conclusion that it
was the former - we were right!
weather was appalling after the gloriously hot days of Easter, and we were
greeted at the church by a jolly, brolly-wielding gentleman, Keith, attempting
to sort the car parking in the single, narrow road that winds through the village.
of 25 were gathered in the 12th century church which is well worth
exploring. The place is a treasure
trove as the locals have found many medieval tiles and coins.
led through the church yard, past the magnificent gatehouse and into the
entrance hall. Here we met the charming
William de Loecker and his housekeeper Gay.
immaculately turned out in tie, blazer and slacks, is Belgian and in his
nineties, spends six months of each year in Devon. The consummate gentleman, his love of the
place is evident, having researched the history over the past 40 years of
ownership, and he delights in private visits to show off this exquisite
architectural gem he calls home.
Manor is referred to in the Doomsday Book but it is very much lived in and not
a mothballed museum piece. Indeed,
Willie's grandchildren had been staying over the Easter holidays and apparently
fight to sleep in the magnificent medieval hanging bed [not a four poster he
was at pains to point out] in the great chamber, complete with Elizabethan
plaster work, carvings and stained-glass windows! Do they realise what a privilege this
is? You bet Willie will have instilled
this into them. He revealed that behind
a red velvet curtain was a vanity unit, making the room useable, and you can
only image the games of hide and seek that have taken place over the centuries!
stone from the local quarries, Weare Giffard Hall comprises the great hall with
two long projecting wings. It has been
added to and modified in the 14th, 15th, late 16th and early 19th centuries by
its owners, the Gifford's and the Fortescue's.
Both were among the knights who came over with William the Conqueror and
it is the soft French 'f' pronunciation that should be used for the village of
has written a booklet on the manor and I could waffle on very badly for pages
about this incredible, and yet little known, house that lies in the heart of a
tiny Devon village. Indeed, there are
so many superlative examples of different architectural glories it should be
declared a UNESO site. From the
ornately carved banisters and panel work of the entrance hall, to the stunning stained-glass
windows in the blue room, the plaster work in the Tudor room and wonderful
Elizabethan furniture in the dining room.
As a single example of how understated and yet glorious the place is,
Willy took us into the Great Hall. This
would have been used as a court room.
We waited outside in the passage way on a 15th century oak settle bench
[with 16th century comical additions!].
The very same bench that miscreants sat on before being tried by the
Lord of the Manor.
proudly explained that the Hall boasts an oak hammer beam roof, then as a
throwaway line, "One of the most tasteful specimens of perpendicular woodwork
in England. Indeed, in quality of
construction, it has justly been compared to the vast hammer beam roofs at
Hampton Court and Westminster Hall!"
So, all I
can suggest is that you start chatting up Judie so you, too, can get to
discover some of the hidden gems of the Devon countryside! Thank you, Judie, a very special day and
with a bit of luck Willy will be holding open house again - I should be back
there like a shot.
P.S. To round the visit off, three of us ladies
decided to go and have lunch. It
was still pouring with rain and so it seemed silly not to and we settled on the
boat cafe at the far end of Bideford quay. None of us had been there and we are always
looking for new and different dining venues. Well I can assure you this
You can't miss it as there is a manikin
dressed as a jolly Jack Tar with the words "Hello sailor, welcome
aboard" on a big black board. There is a large outdoor seating area
but stepping through the puddles we went inside. To say the decor is
quirky is an understatement - kitsch signs, slot machines, nautical memorabilia
and, surprisingly, not an Elizabethan artefact in sight.
Toasty warm, we sat down cradling mugs
of good coffee having ordered egg and bacon butties from the super friendly
owner. To our delight she was showing an old movie. The Gang's all Here -
this is apparently the USP of the cafe! In glorious technicolour, Carmen Miranda was
flashing her incredible eyes and standing in a banana plantation. The
camera panned up to the tree tops to show monkeys with pill box hats. Back down to the beach and 40 Busby Berkley
beauties, clad in gold lame bikinis were assembled each clutching a ten-foot
banana! The ensuing kaleidoscope dance
had to be seen to be believed. As the music swelled, we started laughing!
Nothing could be further removed from our esoteric morning of culture and
elegance - what would Willy have made of it? But as they say, variety is the spice of life
and it all goes on in sleepy old Devon.
FROM THE PARISH
The Annual Parish Meeting was held on
the 9th April when the minutes of the Annual Parish Meeting held on the 10th
April 2018 were approved. Following the
Chairman's report, reports were given from the Police, Finance, Primary School,
Pre-School, Claude's Garden, Manor Hall and Berry in Bloom.
This was followed by the April Parish
Last Meeting of the Current Council
This meeting was the
last of the current Parish Council as elections are due on the 2nd May. However, as Berrynarbor's Council is
uncontested, an election is not necessary.
It was the final meeting for the two District Councillors, Yvette Gubb and
John Lovering. Yvette will be standing
for a different ward due to boundary changes, and John Lovering will be
standing down as a District Councillor.
Also standing down are Councillors Jenny Beer, Julia Fairchild, David
Kennedy and Denny Reynolds.
New Parish Logo
It was agreed to
adopt a new logo for the Parish Council which will be produced by The
Berrynarbor Community Enterprise.
Replacement of Bus Shelter on the A399 - Update
The replacement bus
shelter on the A399 has been sited and the Parish Council would like to thank
County Councillor, Andrea Davis, for facilitating the replacement and providing
grant funding towards the purchase.
Litter Bin at Pitt Hill
The litter bin at
Pitt Hill is in need of repair and the Council are working on providing a
repair or a replacement and this to be discussed at the May meeting.
the meeting held on Tuesday, 14th May, the Chairman gave a brief report of the
year and welcomed Councillors Joe Tucker, the new District Councillor for
Berrynarbor and Lesley Lowe a new Parish Councillor.
Unfortunately, no co-option
applications had been received, so if you are passionate about Berrynarbor and
feel you could make a difference, please contact the Clerk for an application
form. Co-options will take place
at the next meeting on Tuesday, 11th June 2019. More
information is available on the Parish Council's website. There are
currently 3 spaces available on the Parish Council.
Litter Bin at
Following discussion at the April meeting,
Councillors approved the replacement of the bin at Pitt Hill which is broken
and beyond repair.
Berrynarbor Pre-School: £100 towards an outside blackboard
Berrynarbor Newsletter: £250
There will be a Defibrillator Awareness Training
evening on Tuesday,
25th June, at 6.30 p.m. in the Manor Hall. This is in conjunction with The South
Western Ambulance Service and the Parish Council, who invited you to
attend. The Assistant Community Responder
Officer from the Ambulance Service will be leading the training and showing you
how to use the defibrillator in the event of an emergency. Please do come along, you could save a life!
Although there is no bonfire law, there is, however,
a law against any subsequent nuisance that having one might cause. Can we please ask keen gardeners and bonfire
lighters to think before lighting a bonfire, particularly on sunny days when
your neighbours could be enjoying being in their gardens.
Kate Graddock - Acting Parish Clerk [07703 050496]
THE UNEXPECTED FIND!
Mary Green and her two daughters, Jean and Maureen, had at last saved enough
money to have a week's holiday in Weymouth.
They had booked in to a cheap but cheerful bed and breakfast and spent
most days down on the beach, the girls paddling and building sand castles.
as Jean and Maureen were making one of their castles, and digging the moat,
they came across a brooch. It was no
ordinary brooch but had many colourful and shiny stones, diamonds, rubies and
mummy," they cried together, "Look what we've found!"
took one look and said, "Wash it off in your bucket. Now children, we'll take it to the Police
Station." So off they went.
Station Sergeant took one look and immediately said, "This belongs to Lady
Groves, who live in that big house on the hill. Look, you can see it from here. Take it to her now, I'm sure she will be
made their way to the big house and knocked on the door which was opened by a
man who was the butler.
sir, we have a brooch which we believe belongs to Lady Groves," said Mary.
take it to her ladyship." said the man, closing the door.
don't know!" exclaimed Mary to the children, who were equally aghast. But the door opened again and the man, known
as James, said "You had better come in."
said a charming lady who they realised was Lady Groves.
understand you have found my long-lost brooch.
It is worth a lot of money and of great sentimental value as it was
given to me by my late husband."
family were led into a back room and invited to sit down. It was large and had a grand piano. Looking out of the window they could see a
tennis court and beyond that stables.
Groves addressed them, saying "After we have had tea and cakes, I'll show you
they had enjoyed the tea and cakes, Lady Groves took them into the garden,
showing them first the tennis lawn and then the stables.
you two girls like a ride on my ponies?! invited Lady Groves.
please." "Then go with James and he
will fix you up," replied Lady Groves.
children went with James and in no time two ponies were saddled up and the two
girls were led around the field by James.
this was happening, Lady Groves asked Mary where they were staying, and Mary
told her about the boarding house.
must finish your holiday here," said Lady Groves at once. "I will send James to collect your things."
Jean and Maureen were later shown into a large, comfortable bedroom with one
large and two single beds.
Lady Groves was and even invited them to come again next year.
Tony Beauclerk - Stowmarket
Illustrations: Paul Swailes
A Slight Muddle:
SYAWLA liked ROBRANYRREB as I DEVIL there for six and a half SRAEY. It is
a YLEVOL EGALLIV and I know everyone is YPPAH there. DOOG KCUL.
A VISIT TO THE GLOBE
to The Globe was the subject of a recent e-mail from Phil Rollings of Bristol,
which in turn set off a number of coincidences.
with interest in the December issue that The Globe had been saved and given a
coat of paint. I hadn't been to Berry
since November and didn't have time to stop for a pint then. However, on the 17th April in we went and had
a quick one. How pleased we were to see
the work and a thriving crowd enjoying lunch.
I have been in and out of The Globe many times over the years. My mother, Phyllis Draper was born in No.
94, Jacobs Well, along with three sisters and a brother, Denzil. Their parents were William and Nellie. Sadly, all have 'gone on' now but I found
this photo of me and my brother with Mum and Uncle Denzil sitting outside The
Globe around 1959. Martin is enjoying
his 'pint' and I am the stylish chap in the hat!
enquiring if there was a connection to the Draper Girls in Ray Thorne's article
[April 2018], Phil replied:
earlier today I was at Ray's funeral in Ilfracombe Parish Church - we were
second cousins. His mother Pam and my
mother were cousins. Our great
grandfather, William Draper, who owned Jacobs Well, was married to Ellen, née
James, and their children included the three girls in Ray's article plus my
grandfather also William Draper, John and Bert. There was also a daughter Lorna who died
aged 3 in 1912. My grandfather married
Nellie Lavinia Little of Simonsbath c1920.
He had served in the Great War in Palestine, Mesopotamia and
Gallipoli. After contracting enteric
fever, a telegram was sent home to say he had died. to be followed a fortnight
later by a letter from himself to say he was OK - what a relief! He completed the war in Belgium and was then
sent to Ireland in late 1918 to be part of the occupation dealing with the IRA.
attached a photograph of my great grandparents and their brood taken I guess
William and Ellen Draper with their eight children
Back row: John, Hilda, William, Florence, Bert
Front row: Rosina, Doris, William Draper, Olive, Lorna
and Ellen Draper
William: married Nellie Little and they had 5 children
- Winnie, Denzil, Margaret, Phyllis [mother of Phil Rollings] and Sheila
*Florence May: married her cousin Frederick Draper in 1914
John: [aka Little Uncle Jack]
*Rosina: married Francis
William Brookman. They had 3 children,
Raymond [lost on HM Glorious in WWII], Frank and Pam. Pam married Ron Thorne, parents of Ray
and Albert [Bert],
Doris Ellen, Olive Maud and Lorna Marian, who died aged 3 in 1912
and was buried in the churchyard of St. Peter's.
the dearly loved
WILLIAM & ELLEN DRAPER
whom Jesus called to himself on
March 26 1912, aged 3 years.
Our dear little Lorna is gone to rest
God called for her when He thought best
We will not mourn but watch and pray
We'll meet again in Heaven some day.
* The 3 Draper Girls
in Ray's article
LOCAL WALK - 174
"What's in a
name? That which we call a rose
By any other name
would smell as sweet."
recent months it has been pleasant to have available a short alternative
detour, to a stroll along the Sterridge Valley, between the two Restricted
first section I had not been to since Olive Kent left Woodlands Cottage. You may recall her dog Panda, later
succeeded by the more boisterous but fiercely loyal Pickles.
was longer and much steeper than I remembered it but then I'm a quarter of a
century older. The climb was worth it
though for the profusion of wild flowers, especially one of my favourites, the
delicate wood sorrel. As the afternoon
progressed its petals and bright green shamrock leaves would close up.
above my head a loud and witty trill I could not identify. I looked up. Perching on a branch was a male
blackcap. I am more familiar with its
'clat, clat' alarm call.
second stage of the detour - a turn to the left down a deep green lane with
high stony banks and floored with a thick mulch of oak leaves; a tree house overhanging the start and
further down, the sound of running water coming from a well with a caged front.
hidden and rather mysterious track and I'd been unaware of its existence
previously [although there is some indication of it on the Ordnance Survey
bottom of the track the third and final stage of the detour opens out with a
stream, carpets of yellow archangel, comfrey and some hens. Here, passing between houses does feel
a bit like invading someone's 'defensible space'. Hence, I suppose, the use of the word
'restricted' on the byway signs and the presence of cctv cameras.
managed to squeeze past the large vehicle, blocking the exit of the byway, in
order to reach the 'highway'. Then on
to Ruggaton Lane where the high bank soaks up the heat, providing each year an
early display of spring flowers and butterflies.
watched orange tip butterflies landing on Jack-by-the-hedge and this caused me
to remember Olive Kent again - a debate we'd had years ago triggered by a
butterfly fluttering past and my commenting that it was the first orange tip I
had seen that year.
said Olive, "It's just a cabbage white."
She felt it was not necessary to identify a butterfly, bird or wild
flower. It is just the same bird or
flower, etc., and just as lovely whether or not you know its correct name. I
could see her point. After all, it was
Juliet who said, "What's in a name . . . "
But some of the names are appealing and can tell us a lot about the
characteristics, uses or folk lore attached to the plant - like Jack-by-the-hedge for example and the
alternative name garlic mustard.
Footnote: If you
haven't discovered it already, may I draw your attention to Sue Jerrard's
regular nature observations, From a Bittadon Garden, in the Coast and Combe
the fairies had turned him into a water-baby.
water-baby? You never heard of a
water-baby Perhaps not. That is the very reason why this story was
uneasy book when read as a child and even more so when read as an adult, Charles
Kingsley's 1862 novel, The Water Babies, is one of those perennial children's
classics that is not so perennial today!
story, initially written for his 4-year-old son, Grenville, Kingsley was
appalled by the plight of young sweeps in Victorian times, whose masters were
often brutal and condemned them to lives of misery often leading to early
young chimney sweep, Tom, is wrongfully blamed for a theft, he makes a run for
it, together with his dog Toby, ending up jumping into a fierce running river
where they encounter anthropomorphic underwater creatures. Before he can return and clear his name, Tom
has to rescue his new friends, the Water Babies, from their nemesis.
action animated feature film directed by Lionel Jeffries loosely based on the
tale of the Water Babies was made in 1978 with a star-studded cast including
James Mason, Bernard Cribbins, Billie Whitelaw, Joan Greenwood, David
Tomlinson, Una Stubbs, David Jason, Lance Percival and Jon Pertwee.
Kingsley was born in Holne, Devon, in June 1819, the eldest son of the Reverend
Charles Kingsley and his wife Mary Lucas Kingsley. His childhood was spent in Clovelly, where
his father was curate and rector [1826-1836] and at Barnack in Northamptonshire. He was educated at Bristol and Helston
Grammar schools before studying at Kings College London and Magdalene College,
Cambridge, graduating from there in 1842.
to pursue a ministry career in the church and from 1844 was Rector of Eversley
in Hampshire. In 1859 he became
Chaplain to Queen Victoria and was appointed Regius Professor of Modern History
at Cambridge in 1860. In 1861 he became
private tutor to the Prince of Wales.
resigned his professorship at Cambridge in 1859 and from 1870 to 1873 was a
canon of Chester Cathedral when he founded the Chester Society for Natural
Science, Literature and Art and became the 19th President of the Birmingham and Midland Institute
in 1872. In 1873 he was made a cannon
of Westminster Abbey.
reformer, historian and novelist, Kingsley married Frances Eliza Grenfell
[1814-1891] in 1844. They had two sons
and two daughters.
1855 historical novel Westward Ho!, the seafaring adventures of Amyas Leigh,
led to the founding of the village of the same name near Bideford, the only
place name in England with an exclamation mark!
died in 1875 at his home in Eversley and is buried in the churchyard there.
his bust was taken from St. George's Chapel, Windsor and relocated in Poets'
Corner in Westminster Abbey and his statue stands on the Quay in Bideford.
poem, Easter Week, was included in the 2019 Easter Service at St. George's
Chapel, attended by the Queen and other members of the Royal Family.
the land, her Easter keeping,
Rises as her Maker
Seeds, so long in darkness
Burst at last from
Earth with heaven above rejoices;
Fields and gardens
hail the spring;
Shaughs and woodlands ring with
While the wild birds
build and sing.
You, to whom your Maker granted
Powers to those
sweet birds unknown,
Use the craft by God implanted;
Use the reason not
Here, while heaven and earth
Each his Easter
tribute bring -
Work of fingers, chant of voices,
Like the birds who
build and sing.
statue on the Quay at Bideford
Attwell, born in Mile End London, in June 1879, was a British
illustrator and comic artist. Studying
at Heatherleys and St. Martin's School of Art, she was known for her cute,
nostalgic drawings of children, often based on her daughter Marjorie [Peggy]
from her marriage to painter and illustrator Harold Earnshaw with whom she also
had two sons. She died at her home in
Fowey, Cornwall, in 1964. Her drawings
and poems feature on many postcards, advertisements, posters, books and
figurines, are still popular and loved today.
MOVERS AND SHAKERS NO. 81
Owner of Discovery Music, 7
Litchdon Street, Barnstaple
3rd November 1970 -
"I don't own a computer! I don't deal with the internet! I don't possess a smartphone! What I do have is an ability to communicate
with folk face to face. By the time
we've shared a cup of tea and put the world to rights, we've made friends and I
can get down to business."
So says this month's Mover and Shaker
who has been in the record business for nearly 30 years.
Over the years, when in Barnstaple, I have
sometimes seen a man dressed in formal black, from top hat to black boots,
strolling along the High Street. He
looked a bit scary and I couldn't possibly imagine chatting to him about his
life. Later I realised that he owned
Discovery Music, a small shop set behind the Imperial Hotel.
Then, recently on BBC Spotlight, there
he was chatting to Jim and Julian about a record they wanted him to sell:
Weight off My Mind. He looked a really
nice guy and I wondered if he would agree to being another Mover and Shaker. So, I
took the plunge, walked into his den, packed from ceiling to floorboards with
vinyl records old and new, and yes, he was a fascinating chap with a fund of
stories and a sound philosophy on life.
Matt was born in North Devon and has
lived all his life in the county. His mother was from Selsey near Croydon, Surrey, and his dad from Oxted, but
they moved to North Devon in the 1960's and brought up two of their younger
sons here. Matt is five years younger
than Michael, and Andrew, the oldest, is ten years Matt's senior.
Their parents brought the boys up to
believe in common sense, common decency and courtesy. Neither was particularly interested in making
money, although father had a good financial head. He was an antiques dealer, later specialising
in jewellery. They were all encouraged
to talk about their problems and life in general and grew up with love and
respect for their parents. The family
motto was to 'know thyself'.
At college, Matt, in the first year, chose the wrong 'A'
levels: chemistry, physics and pure and applied mathematics. He didn't do too well. In the second year he did much better with sociology!
After leaving college he did various jobs but during a
session of unemployment, a friend of his was trying to run a book/record shop
in Bideford part-time to coincide with his teaching job. Matt
said that he could run the shop and look after the records - he'd always been
interested in these and learnt a lot during his teens, and he'd always loved
books. That job lasted from the age of
21 for the next ten years. However, he'd
always wanted his own business. Then the
One thing that Matt and his brother Michael shared was that
on completing their education they would 'flee the nest'. This they both did. Their father had bought 7
Litchdon Street, which has a cottage with garden behind. The cottage was renovated and let, and the
upper of two flats was also let - to Matt. When he talked of his own business, what was
better than to convert downstairs into his shop? And so began Discovery Music.
His shop is open from 10.00 a.m. to 5.00 p.m. Monday to
Saturday and after that [and another reason why he's not interested in modern
technology], his time is his own. Matt will
value people's own records, walk miles of our lovely countryside ["What better
way is there to enjoy scenery slowly", he says], take myriads of excellent
photographs, some of which he makes into greetings cards for friends and
generally enjoy life away from the digital scene.
He lives above the shop, paying rent to his mother who owns
the premises. His girlfriend of 17
years, a seamstress, is independent and keeps her own property - a sensible
arrangement for both of them. He says, "I may look like a punk but I'm not!" The bullets on the belt around his middle are
not live, and the seven deadly sins tattoo-ed on his right arm correspond to
the seven golden virtues on his left. Now I've Googled them, I can quote them! He
still usually wears black, and always the top hat. He never got around to drink and drugs in his
early years, partly through not having the best of health and partly from the
Matt does a lot of work
on the telephone, too. Not suffering
from cyber psychosis means that he has time, again, to talk to folk whether
they are customers or friends.
Back to the record Weight off my Mind.
Jim and Julian are old friends of Matt's, brought closer together after the
death of another friend, a saxophonist, who died far too young of a mental
illness. The men wrote this song as a
help to others in need and who better to sell the record than Matt. Backing up his interest is a small leaflet in
his window: Positive Steps for Mental Health.
He also sells CD's and offered advice
on what to choose. CD's he says are not
built to last, 20-30 years at most before chemicals start breaking down, silver
covering goes sepia, glue loses its strength and so on. Records, if looked after, will last a
lifetime. And how much does one pay for
these? "Well," he says, "In my sale
area out the back, you can pick one up for 75pence. Over there is a Beatles original of Let it Be
priced at £500. But most of my trade is
between £5 and £20."
And what is his favourite? The Who, he answers immediately, but then goes
on to say that he likes classical music, although he doesn't sell these as they
are in a specialist class of their own, jazz and a whole host of others. I
reckon he knows an awful lot about his trade!
Meeting Matt passed a very pleasant
hour. Here is a man who goes against
'tech madness'. When even old souls
like me can send e-mails, and order from the internet, as he says for
convenience, comfort and escapism, he doesn't feel left out of what he sees as
a negative cyber virus, bombarding people with quick information which can
become addictive. All that information is available offline - if
we only have time to search for it and the proof? If you want to know about latest recordings,
pop groups and so on, he's your man.
It was a refreshing change to meet him.
I doubt if his shop will ever make him
a fortune, but his lifestyle says a lot about reducing stress. Long
may it last!
FROM REV. BILL
Once again, the months go by. The blossoms have fallen by now but very
little changes with regard to parliament and our country. If it's not MP's expenses its Brexit!
Brexit has become divisive, political
parties are divided even amongst themselves, and the country is divided. It wasn't that long ago when parliament was
in the news over affluent members fiddling their expenses. Certainly, our MPs
get a lot of flak from all sides. But
how many people in other walks of life are doing, or would do the same thing:
perhaps thinking that fiddling the company isn't as serious as fiddling the
Jesus once told a woman caught in
adultery that her sins were forgiven, but added go and sin no more. You may be wondering what adultery and fiddling
expenses have in common; they are
similar in this way: they are both stealing something that is not rightfully
theirs. Is adultery and fiddling
expenses becoming more acceptable in our society?
When people choose to become
politicians or members of parliament, they have a responsibility to those who
elect them, they are placed in positions of trust and are given the title
Honourable and promise to be so. In the same way men and women promise to
honour their spouses, they too are placed in positions of trust and have a
responsibility to one another.
If responsibility is not accepted and
acted upon, trust goes out of the window. It seems to me that our political classes
often go too far and many of them fail to understand what is right, but then
are they the only ones?
If we say that we have no sin, we
deceive ourselves, and there is no truth in us.
But if we confess our sins to
God, he will keep his promise and do what is right: he will forgive us our sins.
God loves you and even our politicians!
SHAKESPEARE FORSEES BREXIT!
This land of such
dear souls, this dear dear land,
Dear for her
reputation through the world,
. . . England, bound
in with the triumphant sea,
Whose rocky shore
heats back the envious siege
Of watery Neptune,
is now bound in with shame,
With inky blots and
rotten parchment bonds:
That, England, that
was wont to conquer others,
Hath made a shameful
conquest of itself.
Ah, would the
scandal vanish . . .
John of Gaunt's speech from Richard II
BERRYNARBOR HORTICULTURAL & CRAFT SHOW
A reminder that this
year's Show will be taking place
on SATURDAY, 17TH AUGUST.
Schedules will be available from the Shop in
early June, so pick one up and see what YOU can enter. There are many classes to choose from. Entries will be able to be placed in the
Hall on the evening of Friday,
16th August and again in the morning of Saturday, 17th
August. The Hall will be open for
everyone to view the entries from 2.00 p.m., when there will be refreshments
and a raffle.
Keep the date free,
give thought to what you could enter and support this village event.
OLD BERRYNARBOR - VIEW NO. 179
Berrynarbor near Ilfracombe
For June and July, I have chosen an
early print of Berrynarbor which I hope you will enjoy. A genuine steel engraving by J. Harwood and J.
Thomas. it is dated c1829-32, Prints
from this engraving would also have been coloured by hand, as shown on the
cover of this Newsletter.
Definitively, it is an artistic
impression of our village which shows the church of St. Peter, with the
original Manor House to the left as well as various cottages including Tower
Cottage. There are boats sailing on
Watermouth Harbour and a couple of cottages on the hill to the far left. Are these going up Hagginton Hill or maybe
the cottages opposite the Sawmill Inn?
Smoke is coming from the cottage chimneys. At this time, virtually all the cottages
and farms were owned by Squire Bassett of Watermouth Castle.
It is interesting to note that the
artist does not show the roof of the church, which is, in fact, level with the
third section from the top of the tower.
Looking up the print on the internet -
and it is available to purchase from various sites - there is a link to James
and Sarah [Sally] Gear. But why? Are they and their family perhaps portrayed? Both were born in Berrynarbor: James 1796/8-1882, Sarah 1799-1876.
Cottage, May 2019