SOUP & PUD EVENING
Dear Soup and
massive thank you to you all - all you bakers, stirrers, donators, slurpers, pud makers, munchers,
quizzers, guzzlers, rafflers, washer-uppers and
raised £1,050, and the charities benefitting this year are the RNLI, Read Easy,
Berrynarbor Pre-School, Berrynarbor School, Berrynarbor Newsletter and the
Manor Hall Trust. Maybe see you next
and the Soup 'n' Pud Gang
WEATHER OR NOT
January and February
East Lyn river just below Hillsford
cannot believe it is time for me to draft the weather report for January, the
month has slipped by so quickly. It may
be a new year but sorry to say no new weather pattern. The last four days of December managed to
stay dry but the first dry day in January was on the10th and only a total of 7
days without some precipitation. The 9th was the wettest day with 25.8mm and
the total rain for the whole month amounted to 132.6mm, below the average of
highest temperature was 13è°C on the 14th [average 13.02°C] and the lowest -
1.4°C on 20th [average -2.35°C]. The
highest wind speed was 47mph on the 14th from the SSW [average 43.20
mph] and on the 20th the wind chill factor was -2.8°C. [average -4.7°C. This is a record I only started in
2016]. The total hours of sunshine
amounted to 16.31 which was up on the average of 13.99. One outstanding figure for January was the
barometric pressure, I recorded a high 1049.7mbars at 0100 hrs. on 20th, the
highest I have recorded and near the U.K. highest of 1053.6mbars recorded in
Aberdeen on the 31/01/1902. The lowest
pressure arrived on the 14th at 986.4mbars courtesy of Storm Brendan.
has been horrible to say the very least.
With three named storms, Ciara, Dennis and Jorge, of which Dennis had
the most effect here in the Valley. The
Met. Office say it is the wettest February on record, here 210.4mm fell,
wettest day 28th at 28.4mm, but according to my records 2000 was much worse
with 307mm. My
average for the month is 115.49mm, so this year is well above that figure. The highest temperature was 13.3°C [average
13.04°C] on two days the 9th and 16th, and the lowest 0.4°C on 6th, which is
warmer than the average for February at 2.09°C.
The highest wind speed was during storm Dennis with 57.08mph from the
SSW on the 16th [average is 39.60 mph] and the second highest I have recorded
since 1994. The Highest was 57è5mph in
2014. The lowest wind chill factor was on the 6th at -0.3°C, positively warm as
the average since 2016 was -5.3°C. Sunshine was in short supply with a total of
16.31hrs, well below the February average of 43è7hrs. The barometer was up and down like a yo-yo
with the highest on the 5th at 1038.4mbars and a low of 987.9mbars on the 16th
during storm Dennis.
new record I am now being supplied with by a friend is Annual Rainfall Far
& Wide, this gives the total rainfall for the following U. K. places for
2019, Bothwell near Glasgow 1032mm., Cretingham,
Suffolk 69mm, Carrigart, Donegal, R.o.I.
821mm and Berrynarbor 1259mm - we hold the record, I should say a dubious
this note I wish you all a good spring, if we can find a few more hours of
sunshine I am sure it would be appreciated!
BRIAN HENRY FRYER
06..1939 - 02.03.2020
Brian passed away peacefully at home,
with his family around him. Much loved
husband to Vivian and devoted dad to Charlotte and Mickey, he will be greatly
missed by all who knew and loved him.
The funeral has taken place.
A special thank you to neighbours and
friends who have sent cards and messages of sympathy. A very special thanks goes to Dr. James of
Combe Coastal Practice and all the carers, support workers, Hospice to Home, district
nurses, Rapid Response and palliative care teams. Also Steve at the
North Devon Hospice.
It was with sadness we learnt that
Brian had passed away and our thoughts are with Vivian, Charlotte and Mickey at
this time of grief.
Tribute to Allan Maynard
Although they left Glaziers [now Ragstone Cottage],
Hagginton Hill in 1987, many of you will remember Allan and Heather Maynard. Allan was Manager of NatWest in Ilfracombe,
and shortly before we moved from Middle Lee Farm to Hagginton Hill, Allan was
promoted to Manager of the Sidmouth bank. It must have been something we said! We've remained friends ever since.
Allan was born in Weston-super-Mare, but his banking career
took him to many towns in the South West and Wales. Having settled in Sidmouth,
he stayed as Manager for over 6 years and after retiring, led an active social
life. He had for many years been a strong supporter
of Rotary, which continued, and he very much enjoyed a round of golf. He and Heather enjoyed travelling, often
across the pond to see their daughter and family in Texas, and Allan's cousin
in Florida and Martha's Vineyard. But they very much enjoyed their time in
Berrynarbor and until two years ago were members of our Wine Circle. [Heather is hoping to rejoin, soon.] All that, together with Heather's
entertaining skills, kept him occupied.
About six years ago, Allan developed neuropathy in his left
leg which restricted his movements over the years and then he succumbed to
cancer of the liver.
Sadly, he died at home on February 10th and his funeral
[family only] was held on February 28th.
Fortunately, his daughter Ruth, had journeyed from Texas two weeks
earlier to be with him and although due to fly home on the day he died, stayed
until after the funeral which was a great support to Heather. Ruth's family, husband David and children
Jason and Chloe, flew over for the funeral and Ian, their son, and his wife Ann,
who live in Weston-super-Mare are
Allan will be very much missed by his
family and many friends, and we send love and sympathy to Heather and her
family through our Newsletter.
And others in the village who knew
Allan and Heather when they were at Glaziers, are thinking of Heather and the
family at this time of sadness and send their best wishes.
REFLECTIONS - 93
In the February issue of the Newsletter I wrote about the
copious displays of daffodils, both wild and cultivated, that I had observed
whilst traversing my local Somerset countryside in early spring last year. Come late April, it was the turn of the
bluebells, the most dazzling display witnessed whilst driving along the western
flanks of the Malvern Hills which border Worcestershire and Herefordshire. Its woodland floors were awash with the
flowers, their density only intensified where glades and patches of large open
slopes offered ground that had been transformed into myriads of blue.
It was the Swedish botanist and great plant namer, Carl Linnaeus who was to christen this flower which
belongs to the hyacinth family. By
then, he had already given the true hyacinth its Latin name, hyacinthoides,
which he based upon the Greek God Apollo's apparent wailing at the death of his
lover Hyacinth; with
a little imagination, Linnaeus opined, Appollo's cry
was visible in the flower's head. As
for the poor bluebell, which has a flower turning downwards towards the ground,
he unfortunately regarded it as being merely an 'unmarked' plant; and so, considering it a plant that
had no need of any particular description, he named it hyacanthoides non scripta
- a hyacinth with no writing on it.
The plant, also called the wild hyacinth, is better known in
Scotland as the harebell. It has many
country names across the UK including crow flower, goose gander and culverkeys. It is
also called both the wood hyacinth and wood bell for it is at heart a woodland
plant ideally suited to deciduous woodlands that offer plenty of light in early
spring. Yet this is also a very
versatile plant with the ability to grow in a wide range of habitats, with bogs
and fens perhaps the only two exceptions.
Shade, however, is its main prerequisite in order to thrive as well as
continuity of habitat. Humidity adds the third essential ingredient to enable
it to flourish and is the most likely reason the plant does so well in the west
country, even in open spaces.
Bluebells only grow on Europe's western fringes and cannot
be found anywhere south of the Mediterranean or extending north into
Scandinavia. This applies not just to
the native variety but also to its impostor, the Spanish bluebell which, along
with many other plants, began arriving in this country from the continent in
17th century. London ports were its preferred destination
where local nurserymen had become aware of the plant's increasing popularity
due to its yielding ability to grow. Soon
they were being sold to gardeners as the native bluebell, an unscrupulous
business which according to some reports still goes on today. Thankfully the Spanish bluebell can be
distinguished from its native counterpart as the Spanish variety is more erect,
has blue anthers [the native plant has cream] and, unlike the native bluebell,
does not have flowers confined to one side of the spike. Awareness of trading this imitation of the
real thing has ironically created another problem with bluebell woods being stripped
as part of a big horticultural crime business in order to sell on the true
native bluebell. As a result, the area
covered by Britain's bluebell woodlands has halved since 1950. For evidence, just take a closer look at a
low hedge bank where you may just witness a ghostly reminder of a boundary of a
former ancient bluebell woodland.
Despite all this, the UK still accounts for more than half of the
world's bluebell biomass as the plant adores our damp, Atlantic climate. This means that our bluebell population is
of national importance, making us crucially responsible for its future; it is
imperative that we become more conscious of its threatened status.
In order for them to flourish, bluebells need to be properly
managed. For example, being allowed to
grow under a coppiced rotation. It is a
hardy plant that can endure 17-year cycles, or even longer, in areas with
inadequate light levels and then make a spectacular appearance when the canopy
is removed. In stable situations it is
able to survive for years and can endure both the wind and the cold. It is also allelopathic, producing chemicals
at bulb level which discourage competition from other plants. A truly
In the 16th century starch was obtained from the bulbs to
stiffen neckties, whilst strong glue was once sourced from scraping the roots
and used for making arrows and for book binding. Modern history, meanwhile, records special
'bluebell trains' that were laid on for city dwellers. The dawn of a new millennium saw the
conservation charity Plantlife organise,
in 2002, a national poll allowing people to vote for their favourite county
flower. Perhaps unsurprisingly, the
result in twenty counties found the bluebell to have the majority vote. As a
consequence, it has been adopted as the wildflower emblem of the UK and
specially rated as Britain's favourite flower.
The poet Gerard Manley Hopkins depicted patches of bluebells
as 'falls of sky colour'. But perhaps
the most appropriate portrayal is expressed by the nature writer Richard Mabey
who described bluebell woods as 'a uniquely British spectacle.' And who can disagree with him?
Happy Easter and enjoy the spring.
ST. PETER'S CHURCH
my contribution for this issue will have be somewhat shortened. There has been a bereavement in Sue's family
and in consequence this has meant that we have to travel up to Oxfordshire once or twice a week, a return journey of some
return to Church matters, we are still awaiting approval from the Diocese to
commence the major repair work to the church and hopefully this will, with a
respite in the dreadful weather, commence in early spring.
will, of course, have to be areas of scaffolding erected, but this will not
impede access to the church or churchyard in any way whatsoever. Signs
will, of course, be positioned near pathways for safety considerations.
AGM will be held in the Church vestry on Monday, 30th March commencing with the
election of officers. Whilst readers of this Newsletter will not
have been aware of this meeting, it is hoped that our AGM will have been well
attended. It is of great importance that we welcome new
blood onto our PCC since many of our existing members have served for 10 years
or more and are not getting any younger!
are 5 or 6 PCC meetings in a year - so it's not a great ask for new people to
join and to share among our 8 members the task of running the Church and
Churchyard for the benefit of the village.
mentioned many times, we urgently need a new Treasurer
to take over from Margaret Sowerby - who will be happy to spend time explaining
this important role. Please contact our PCC Secretary, Alison
Sharples, on 01271-882782.
continue to pray for those who are unwell in this Parish and our special
thoughts are with Viv Fryer and her family. her husband, Brian, having died
recently following a lengthy illness. We
also hope that both Pip Summers and Jill Jones continue to recover from recent hospital
NEWS FROM THE VILLAGE SHOP & POST OFFICE
Spring is Here (?)
it has seemed like it at times, we're backing author Hal Borland's view that
'no winter lasts forever' and 'April is a promise that May is bound to keep'. And if that's true, our thoughts can turn at
last to the outdoors and our gardens. As
seed sowing and perennial cuttings gather pace, the Village Shop can help with top
quality compost at a very competitive price with savings when you buy multiple
bags. If you struggle with lifting or transportation,
just let us know and assistance will be given.
We're looking forward to the Great
Berrynarbor Plant Sale which is being held on Sunday 17th May in the Manor
Hall. Please try to donate some plants
to the sale - herbs, perennials and house plants are always in demand. Donated plants can be delivered to the Manor
Hall from 10.00 a.m. on the day or to the Shop beforehand. Doors to the Sale will open at 2.00 p.m. In addition to hundreds of plants on offer, there
will be a Berry in Bloom cake stall, refreshments including bacon butties and a
fabulous raffle with a myriad of wonderful prizes.
St George's Day
St George has been the patron saint of
England for nearly 700 years [it was the very English St Edmund before that]
and on his feast day - Thursday, 23rd April - the Shop will be celebrating
everything English by having a number of very special offers that you just
won't want to miss! Lots of bargains to
be grabbed [one day only] but no dragons will be harmed.
And finally, the coronavirus. As the Newsletter goes to press, we are still
in the containment phase and the Shop is closely following Government and
industry advice to protect staff and customers alike.
If you are a customer and are
self-isolating, then the Shop can help with your essential supplies. If you ring the Shop with your requirements [01271
883215], we have a number of volunteers on standby who will arrange for your
order to be delivered to your door. We shall
do whatever we can to help, however we shall not be able to deliver single
items and can only deliver items that are stocked in the shop. If you do not already have an account with us,
we will open a temporary one for you which you can settle once your
self-isolation is completed. For all
telephone orders, we'll ask you to send a confirmation email to us at email@example.com.
We go the extra mile so you don't have to!
I have always been interested in the
theatre and can remember in the war years visiting the Victoria Pavilion where
there was a variety of shows with all the well-known names of the time. It was a good theatre that doubled as a
Across the road, above the shops, was
another hall which I understand had dances, although I never actually attended
The Alexandra Theatre was another venue
for shows, plays and dancing, although the floor was a little up and downhill!
Now, to get to the photograph. This is of me with Jimmy Cricket. Comedian Jimmy [James Mulgrew (1945)] has an
unusual way of putting things: A lady
said "Can you see me across the road?" I
said, "Go over the road and I'll have a look."
Another was: A man knocked on my door and said "I'm your
new neighbour." I said, "I didn't know
Tony Beauclerk -
BERRYNARBOR MANOR HALL TRUST
We were very
much looking forward to a productive 2020 on the fundraising front, but
the Coronavirus may
curtail some of our planned events.
We have been rigorously following the guide lines that we
have been given to keep people safe but of course if you have any concerns or
questions please do not hesitate to contact myself or anyone on the committee
for further details.
On a more cheerful note, our first fundraiser of the year
was a lovely day of pancake eating and flipping. Thank
you to all who came along and thank you to the spinners who kindly allowed us
to gate crash their session! The Pre-school
children came over and enjoyed trying to toss a pancake in the air - needless
to say, that particular pancake did not get eaten!
The hallway leading into the Pre-school and the snooker room
has had a well overdue makeover. A very
big thank you to our Treasurer, Alan, for leading the charge and to Ray, Phil,
Nigel, Tim and Gary for kindly giving up their time to help - it looks great!
Our new shed is now finished and in use which has enabled us
to keep the hall nice and clear. Our
next project is to renew all the front barge boards and guttering so expect to
see scaffolding going up soon, please take care around it and apologies for any
inconvenience it may cause.
Back by popular demand is our Ladies Fashion Night, the date
is Tuesday 28th April at 7.00 p.m. Tickets
are available from the Shop and Clathers Clothes Shop
on the Harbour in Ilfracombe. Ticket price is £5.00 to include a glass of
'sparkly'. We had a great night last
year so please come along and join the fun!
Chairman and Bookings - and the Trustees
THANK YOU TO BE & RICHARD
First of all I should like to say
well done to Be and Richard for organising another fabulous Soup and Pud Evening. A wonderful village night, full of fun,
laughter and good food and all the more amazing as they had only just got back
from their travels.
The do was really well attended and raised over £900. We were asked for suggestions on how this
money should be allocated. Well I am
delighted to report that it has not gone towards the Gingell's
next travel project but they have been kind enough to donate £200 to Read Easy
This is a very worthwhile local charity that I have been
working with for the last two years. It provides free, one-to-one tuition for
adults who struggle with reading. Sadly,
in the Barnstaple area alone there are about 1,500 adults who have a reading
level that makes it difficult to cope with life. Everyday tasks and most employment are a
challenge. Imagine not being able to catch a bus or
train, fill in a form for a prescription, read a menu, find the right aisle in
the supermarket, and apply for a job. Not being able to read is life limiting and
Our coaches are all volunteers, who have been trained to
give individual, non-judgmental help for however long it takes. Ideally meeting twice
a week for 30 minutes the learner sets the pace. Meetings are held in specially selected,
discreetly staffed venues to safeguard both learners and mentors.
To find out more about this life changing charity please
check out the Read Easy UK website - readeasy.org.uk. Better
still, spread the word. Word of mouth is our greatest tool. If you know someone who is struggling to
read, please help and encourage them to phone 07471332096 . It
could literally change their life.
Thank you. Do call
me on  882675 if you want further information or would like to help Read
big thank you to Be and Richard and all their helpers from the Newsletter and
me. The wonderful Soup and Pud Evening and their generous support of the Newsletter is
very much appreciated.
YOU FROM DEVON AIR AMBULANCE
The Devon Air Ambulance and the Manor Hall both received
donations from collection taken at the Carols in the Square on Christmas
Eve. Cat Walker of Devon Air Ambulance
Thank you for the
donation of £193. Following another
successful year of night flying and support, we have been able to increase our
flying time until 2.00 a.m., to help even more people. Your fantastic support will enable us to
carry on our life saving work whilst we head towards our next milestone to
extend our flying hours even further.
This, together with the development of further community landing sites
across the county, means we shall be available to help even more people.
We are also continuing to invest further in the clinical
development of our aircrew, giving them the skills needed when faced with the
most severe medical emergencies. In
addition, we continue to invest in our future, which will include the
replacement of our aircraft to ensure our development needs are met.
KNIT & NATTER FOR THE NORTH DEVON HOSPICE
thank you to everyone who came with their knitting needles and wool, took part
in the raffle and enjoyed cakes and the company of fellow knitters. The Knit and Natter for the Hospice was
again a success, with a plentiful supply of technicolour knitted strips, the
majority produced during the year, and a donation of £220 being delivered to
Once again, the group welcomed Ali
Hunt, Head of Fund Raising, who came and spoke to everyone about the work of
the Hospice. She has especially asked
to add her thanks to everyone for their continued support in this way for the
This spring the Berry in Bloom team will once again be
filling the tubs around the centre of the village with summer flowering plants
and putting up the hanging baskets. However,
the R.H.S. Britain in Bloom judges are
putting great emphasis on encouraging wild flowers and natural planting.
Last autumn we were given permission by the Parish council
to plant wild flowers in the first, smaller dog walking field. Because
of the terrible wet weather, a path has been laid to allow the walkers to
access the larger field. We propose to
plant two areas either side of the path.
These areas are in the process of having the grass removed/killed to
give the plug plants. perennial wild flowers such as ox-eye daisies, a better
chance to get established. We are also proposing
to scatter wild flower seed. It is hoped
this double whammy will show quicker results.
It will, however, probably take around three years to reach
The plug plants will cost £270.00 and
Berry in Bloom will fund these. We have applied for a grant from Andrea Davies,
our District Councillor, to buy the seeds which will also cost £270. 00. This will be our main project for 2020.
This year to raise funds we should like
to have an Open Gardens afternoon. Two dates were suggested, either the 21st or
28th of June. Obviously, this all depends on the good folks
of Berrynarbor allowing us to open their gardens. It was proposed to have 5 or 6 of the gardens
in the centre of the village open with teas served in the manor hall. If you live fairly centrally, would you be
willing to open your garden for 3 hours on a Sunday afternoon? Don't worry, we're not looking for perfection!
If you would, please let me know. Tel 07436811657.
Creme Egg Brownies
Who doesn't love a chocolate brownie? These brownies are gooey and fudgy, a real
treat. You will need:
salted butter300g soft light brown
4 large free-range
mini Cadbury Creme eggs (2 bags, whole)
freezer for 1 hour
Cadbury Creme eggs
halved then put in freezer for 1 hour
Chilling the eggs stops them from
melting completely during baking.
Preheat the oven to 180°C. Line a
baking tray 25cm X 25cm.
Melt the milk and dark chocolate, butter
and sugar together in a bowl over a pan of barely simmering water. Once
melted remove from the heat and cool for 5-10 minutes.
Beat in each egg one by one. Stir
in the flour. Pour roughly half the mix into the tin. Evenly spread the whole mini crème eggs over
the mix. Top with the remaining butter and
smooth with a spatula. Place the 5 crème eggs cut in halves evenly
over the mix.
Bake for 30 minutes. The
edges should be just browning but the middle should have a bit of wobble! Ovens vary but remember brownies are better
Allow to cool completely in the tin then cut
I'd rather have these than an Easter egg!
"I'm only interested in everything!"
Les Murray AO
was an Australian poet, anthologist and critic. His career spanned over 40 years and he
published nearly 30 volumes of poetry as well as two verse novels and
collections of his prose writings.
He was given the award of Office of the Order of
Born on the
17th October 1893 in Nabiac, Australia, he died on
the 29th April 2019 in Taree, Australia. In 1962 he married Valerie Morelli and
together they had five children.
"One of the most delightful things about a garden
is the anticipation it provides."
from Kelly's Directory of 1935
Berrynarbor is a parish and village on an eminence on
the road to Combe Martin, overlooking the Cove of that name, about 3.5 miles
from Ilfracombe station on the Southern railway, in the Barnstaple division of
the country, hundred and petty sessional division of Braunton, rural district
and county court district of Barnstaple and diocese of Exeter.
The roads in this parish are rugged and the
farmhouses very scattered. The church
of St. Peter is an ancient edifice of stone, in the Norman, Early English and
Perpendicular styles, consisting of chancel, nave, south aisle, south porch and
a very fine embattled western tower of Perpendicular date, 96 feet in height,
with pinnacles, containing a clock and 6 bells:
the chancel and nave are Norman and Early English, and the south aisle
Perpendicular: in the church are
monuments to the Berry family: the
stained east window, erected in 1861, is a memorial to Samuel Thomas Slade
Gully and W.A. Slade Gully M.A. and the window in the north wall to Mrs. and
there is also a stained window in the south aisle, erected in 1883, to
Miss Basset, of Watermouth Castle: in
the vestry is an engraved portrait of Bishop Jewell, presented to the church by
the Rev. Aubrey Townsend B.D. in 1861:
the church is supposed to have been built in the 16th century: it was repaired in 1862, and further in
1880: in 1887 the roof was renovated at
the expense of Mrs. Basset: the chancel
was restored in 1880, and additional work was carried out in 1890, the total
cost from 1880 amounting to £1,085:
there are sittings for 300 persons:
the lych gate on the south side of the churchyard was erected in
1671: in the churchyard is a cross
erected in memory of the men of the parish who fell in the Great War,
The register dates from the
year 1540. The living is a rectory, net
yearly value £640, including 18 acres of glebe, with residence, in the gift of
the Bishop of Exeter and others and held since 1884 by the Rev. Reginald
Churchill. There is a Congregational
chapel. The Village Hall and Club House, erected in
1908, was the gift of Mrs. Basset. The
Manor Hall, erected by Mrs. Penn Curzon in 19113, is used for concerts,
meetings etc. John Jewell D.D. Bishop
of Salisbury, 1559-71, was born at Bowden farm, in this parish, May 24th,
1522; in 1562 he published his
well-known "Apology for the Church of England," and in 1567 and 1569 a "Defence
of the Apology;" he died at Monkton Farley, Wilts, 21st Sept. 1571.
Near the church is the manor house,
originally built in the reign of Edward IV;
part of the front, including the porch, was taken down in 1889, and the
porch has been re-erected at Westaway, near Barnstaple; the exterior was formerly ornamented with
shields of arms of the Plantagenet, Bonville and other families, and elaborate
carved work, all of which has been removed to Westaway, Barnstaple. Watermouth Castle, the residence of Mrs.
Penn Curzon C.B.E. is an embattled mansion of stone, erected about 1825 and
delightfully situated on an eminence sheltered by woods and overlooking the
Bristol Channel. Immediately below is a
picturesque cove, which, at high water, presented the appearance of an inland
lake. Mrs. Penn Curzon C.B.E. is the
principal landowner. The soil is light;
subsoil, gravel. The chief crops are
oats and barley; a
great portion of the land is pasture.
The area is 4,982 acres of land, 2 of tidal water and 58 of foreshore; the
population in 1931 was 561.
Post, M.O., T. & T.E.D. Office (letters should
have Devon added)
(Marked thus * receive letters through Combe Martin.)
M.O. Money Orders, T. Telegrams, T.E.D. Telephone
Churchill Rev. Reginald (rector), Rectry
Coe Mrs. Grace Beatrice, The Lodge
Copeland Harrison, Randy Cleave
Curzon Mrs. Penn C.B.E. Watermouth castle
Duchesne Alfred, The Olde cottage
Forbes Mrs. J. Webster, Watermouth cottage
James Edward Houghton, Watermouth house
Lord George, Woodlands cottage
Morlet Mrs. Long close
Parry Rev. John Horndon M.A.
Roberts Miss, The Woodlands
*Snell Mrs., High Leigh
Symons Archibald Ronald, Dormer cottage
Thomas Miss, Barton hill
Toller C.W.E. Widmouth
*Ashton Jn. farmer, Blurridge
Baker Albt. Jas. shopkpr
Blackmore Chas. Globe P.H.
*Blackmore Jn. carpenter, Berrydown
Bowden Lyster, farmer,
Bowden Samuel, farmer, Ruggaton
Bowden William, farmer, South Lee
Burgess William, farmer, Bowden
Camp George Henry, blacksmith
*Chugg Thomas, farmer, Brinscott
Draper Nellie (Mrs) laundry
Fry Sidney, farmer, Ettiford
*Gibbs Hy. farmer, Yellaton
Gill Percy, Smithen farm
*Gubb Wm. Jn. farmer, Newberry
Harding Alfd. Jas. farmer, Yetland
*Harding Geo. Hy. shopkpr. Berrydown
Huxtable Alfd. frmr. Woolscott Barton
Huxtable Wm. farmer, North Lea
Irwin William, Hill farm
Lancey Fredk. smallholder
Lerwell William, farmer, Rows farm
Nicholls Hedley, carpntr.
Pitt Hill cott
Rice Frank, farmer, Stowford (letters through
*Rice Fredk. farmr. Bodstone Barton
Richards Albt. farmer, Ea Haggington
Richards Redvers Claude, farmer, Hammon's
Richards Frederick I. farmer, Home Barton
Richards Harold, farmer, Moules farm
Rowe Ernest G. farmer, Low. Hodges
Stanbury Frederick, farmer, Hemster
Thyer Percy, farmer, Mill farm
Toms Danl. farmer, Middle Lea
*Weeks Wm. farmer, Indicknowl
THE ULTIMATE TEST
Only a handful of articles/items have
been repeated during the 30+ years of the Newsletter. But to help while away the time in
isolation, see how you get on with this test which was first published in the
February 1990 issue. For those of you
who have kept every issue, and I know there are some, no peaking at the answers
given in the April issue!
This test does not measure your
intelligence, fluency with words and certainly not your mathematical ability,
just your mental flexibility and creativity!
Each question contains the initials of
words that will make it correct. You
need to find the missing words, e.g. 16 O in the P is 16 ounces in the pound.
1.26 L of
the A19. 57 HV
2.7 W of
the W20. 11 PH in a FT
3.1001 AN21. 1 PH on a F
4.12 S of
the Z22. 29 D in F in a LY
5. 54 C in a D23. 64 S on a CB
6.9 P in
the SS24. 40 D and N of the GF
7.88 PK25. 76 T in the BP
8.13 S on
the AF26. 147 is
MB in S
9.32 DF at
which WF27. 125 T go IC
10. 18 H on a
GC28. 3 TT is 1 H 'n' E
11. 90 D in a
RA29. 21 P in a TTM
12. 200 P for
PG in M30. 65 the A to R
13. 7S on a FPP31. 7 L and 5 F
14. 40 in a G32. 12 D of C
15. 3 BM [SHT
R]33. 15 M on a DMC
16. 24 H in a D34. O T on a MC
17. 1H on a U35. 999 is PFA
18. 6 D in a
Answers in the next Newsletter
celebration of North Devon's woodlands
Although better known for his
seascapes, Paul also enjoys painting other aspects of North Devon and its
natural environment. In this new
collection he has taken his inspiration from local woodlands and some of the less
travelled byways around the area.
He has worked in mixed media, mostly
acrylics, on acid free heavyweight Daler Rowney paper which has been responsibly sourced and bears
the Forest Stewardship Council mark. He
has continued to employ his signature mark making techniques to capture the
scenes in a contemporary way.
All 12 pictures are mounted and
supplied in modern white frames ready for display. They are available at FortyThree,
the Ilfracombe Artisan Shop in Fore Street, Ilfracombe, unless previously sold.
The recent storms have inspired Paul to
paint a further series of images to highlight the dynamic nature of the seas
around our coasts - in awe of the Sea.
For further information on these paintings, contact Paul direct. They will be available from April.
Phone:  866075 Mobile:
will also be participating in the Ilfracombe Art Trail which takes place over
the week-end of 9th and 10th May, at home at The Georgian House, 10 Montpelier
Terrace, Ilfracombe. There will also be
on display, quilts made by his wife, Chris, including a king size 'Storm at
Sea' quilt, convergance quilts or wall hangings,
together with the single
bed size Country Cottage with hidden figures in the windows and a range of
patterns making up the pathways.
NEWS FROM THE PRIMARY SCHOOL
How were your first 3 months
of 2020? We began ours with a 45-minute
cross country run around Mill Park! The
weather stayed dry and sunny and we raised an incredible £1500, a portion of
which went to the North Devon Hospice.
Another highlight was
watching Ilfracombe Academy's performance of We Will Rock You. We were seriously impressed by their
World Book Day this year was
phenomenal! We all dressed up as word
warriors and had to solve the mystery of which a member of staff had been
pilfering from our extensive lexicon of superior vocabulary! The day made us recognise how important
language is and how powerful words can be.
At this time of year our
excitement is building as our residentials are coming up. We will tell you all about those adventures
in our next update.
Berrynarbor School Pupil Leaders
Braving the Elements
I have loved all the attention
I have received since my last blog, thank you.
Sitting outside the community shop is no longer a chore when so many
people go past and call my name. I hold
my head with pride and feel quite famous, although the Mrs. does the opposite,
shaking her head in shame saying I'm infamous.
I'm not sure what the difference is but I feel good.
It's been a wet few months
for walks. I have noticed they seem to
get shorter when it's blowing a gale. Not
sure what the problem is especially when the Mr. and Mrs. go out all wrapped
up. They don their waterproofs including these great big rubber boot things. The Mrs. makes such a fuss when the Mr. comes
back and makes a mess on the carpet. They
should realise it's much more fun barefoot. You can enjoy the mud between your toes. However, she complains about my muddy paws
too. Doesn't she realise
people pay a fortune for animal print fabrics? The Mr. and I are simply adding pattern to an
otherwise boring carpet.
I don't know why everyone
keeps complaining about the weather. The
more it rains the better chance I have of getting messy. There is nothing like the joy of jumping in
puddles and racing through the mud. The
only problem is I know it will end in that snake attack when we get back. They unleash it from the wall and allow it to
spray all over me and it's flippin' freezing. I would like to see them endure a cold shower
like that. I do try and share the experience
by shaking all over them when it's finished which I find highly amusing. Sadly, they do not share my joy. These humans just don't have a sense of
It's not easy staying
clean when you are as hairy as me. To be honest the only time I am truly clean is
after a trip to the vicarage where Josey gives me a wonderful pampering. After that I really do look like the dog's b... . . . . . if you know what I mean. Ok now I have probably said too much. I am back on that theme again so it must be
time to finish. Take care. Look
out for me round and about and don't forget to run if you see me coming towards
you with muddy paws!
BERRYNARBOR WINE CIRCLE
Mingling Matters . . .
As I've said before, the Wine Circle is a great village organisation to meet others who are not your
neighbours. It was with concern, therefore, that we learnt
that some new members felt that they weren't mingling. It's
easy to get stuck in a rut and to sit with people you know; however, we've put paid to that and February's
meeting was Call my Wine Bluff and a perfect subject to split friends and/or
neighbours and to sit at tables of six instead of rows of 12. It
worked so well we shall be doing it again!
For those of you that don't know, our Bluff night means that
a panel of three each spout a possible description of six wines. Obviously,
there is only one correct one for each.
We sampled a French Haut-Poitou
Sauvignon Blanc, a Lyrarakis Assyrtiko from Crete and
a Spanish Caixas Albarino. Our first two reds were South African: a Barista Pinotage and a Rustenburg Stellanbosch
Grenache. A Spanish Matsu El Picaro ended
the evening. The favourites were
the Frenchman, which was fresh, crisp and fruity, typical of a Sauv Blanc and the Barista.
Barista is Italian for bartender; however,
today it's synonymous with coffee houses.
This Barista wine smelled of coffee and tasted of the same, but it was a
Behold the rain which
descends from heaven upon our vineyard, and which incorporates itself with the
grapes, to be changed into wine; a constant proof that God loves us, and loves
to see us happy. Benjamin Franklin
I like to select appropriate quotations from my little
book! We've had plenty of rain over the
vineyards and everywhere else over the last six months and let's hope that this
year's crops will enable us to be happy and mingle once again!
Life has been curtailed as we know it. Unsurprisingly,
it was agreed that the Wine Circle would not hold March's meeting due to this
Coronavirus outbreak. If the situation continues as it is, I suspect
that April's and May's meetings, on the 15th and the 20th, will follow
suit. We will keep you posted, as they say.
- Promotional Co-ordinator & Secretary
I wonder what was the last piece of good news you received. Perhaps the birth of your child or grandchild? A promotion at work? Someone said they love you? Or perhaps simply that the supermarket has
now got hand sanitizer and loo rolls back in stock! We all love getting good
news, whether that be something that affects us personally, or just somebody we
Easter is the season of good news. Perhaps you've heard Christians talk about the
Gospel - it's an old English term that simply means Good News. It is the heart of the Christian faith, and
is what we celebrate at Easter.
On the face of it we celebrate the death of Jesus - Good
Friday - and His subsequent rising from the dead - Easter Sunday - which of
course is true, but it is more than a clever trick or just a fact of history. Easter is good news because it is the
evidence and means by which God declares that each of us are precious to Him,
that the sin that separates us from Him has been forgiven, and that death - the
final enemy - has been defeated.
Easter is the great celebration that for those that belong
to Jesus - those that follow Him - that we are no longer marked by our
mistakes, our poor choices, or our thoughtlessness, but instead we are marked
by the forgiveness of Jesus, and given a fresh start in His Kingdom. Jesus' resurrection proves that even death
cannot separate us from the love of God. There is no better news in all the world.
Join us at St. Peter's, Berrynarbor at 2.00 p.m. on Good
Friday, 10th, for a service of readings and music to help us reflect on the
death of Jesus. And then again on Easter
Sunday,12th at 11.00 a.m. as we celebrate Jesus' resurrection, and victory
over sin and death.
know God's immeasurable joy.
FROM THE PARISH COUNCIL . . .
explained in the last Newsletter, the Parish Council wishes to establish the
extent of housing need in the Parish and the support for small affordable
housing development. A Housing
Need Survey in partnership with Devon Communities Together, has now been posted
to every household in the parish. It is really important that as many
households as possible complete and return the form so that the Parish Council
can be given as comprehensive a picture as possible of housing need. The figures obtained will help to plan for
the future and ensure that, if a need is identified, the correct number and
size of homes are built in the parish for local people.
survey is being administered by the Rural Housing Enabler at Devon Communities
Together. They will process the
information and all personal details will remain confidential. No individual will be able to be identified
from the survey report.
The Parish Council's lease for the defibrillator
comes to an end in April 2020 and the Parish Council is pleased to confirm that
it has agreed to renew the assisted defibrillator package with the South
Western Ambulance Service for another four years.
Grass Cutting, Garden Maintenance and Footpath
Clearance Contract 2020-2021
Arboriculture has again been awarded the parish Grass Cutting, Garden Maintenance
and Footpath Clearance Contract for 2020/2021. The Contractor continues to provide an
excellent service to the Parish Council.
Police Crime Commissioner's Communications and
The Parish Council received a short
presentation from the Police and Crime Commissioner's Communications and
Engagement Officer at its March meeting. The Officer has said that if any community
groups would like to receive a presentation he is
happy for his details to be passed on. The
main items to note were that Police numbers are increasing,
they are trying to address the issues with the non-emergency telephone number
111 by introducing a facility to report this via a web-chat. It was explained that those Officers
answering 111 are also the same Officers that answer the 999 calls which
obviously take precedent and the Crime Commissioner was currently looking for a
temporary building to house Barnstaple's force following the announcement of
the closure of Barnstaple's station whilst looking to build elsewhere.
County Council's Road Warden Scheme
The Parish Council is considering joining Devon
County Council's Road Warden Scheme and ask if there is anyone in the community
that would like to nominate themselves to become a Road Warden. Devon County Council will provide training
and following the training you would be able to carry out pothole repairs,
clean signs and drainage and set up road closures for special events. Further information can be found via DCC's
& Council Meetings
The Annual Parish Meeting is scheduled to be held
on Tuesday 14th April 2020. The
Parish Council is monitoring the situation and the Government's Guidance but it
might be that the meeting and some Council meetings will need to be postponed. Updates
will be available on the Parish Council's website and noticeboards. The Parish Council ask that if you do
experience any symptoms, a new or persistent cough or a temperature, you do not
attend Parish Council meetings. The Government's latest advice can be
found via Public Health England's website and the Parish Council urge you to
stay up-to-date with the latest advice, and also urge any vulnerable members of
the community to minimise any risks to themselves.
Sian Barten has recently resigned from the Parish Council. The Council would like to thank Sian for her
commitment, enthusiasm and knowledge over the last few years and wish her well
for the future.
Mrs Victoria Woodhouse BA (Hons) - Parish
helps brings communities together
may not be nice outside, but there's a warm glow spreading out across the whole
of Devon. From coast to countryside,
villages and towns to cities, LOVE Devon is bringing
communities together to support themselves and each other and to celebrate
everything that is good and glorious about living and working in this part of
LOVE Devon was established by Devon Communities Together
which is approaching its 60th birthday. The independent charity was set up
with the intention of helping communities to help themselves, and LOVE Devon was established as a way of raising awareness
and raising much-needed funds to support the charity.
charity's key objectives are more important than ever - to ensure Devon's
communities are given the support they need to address the issues that affect
them; to help them become more
resourceful and resilient and to build places that are healthier, more vibrant
and inclusive with improved well-being.
LOVE Devon is unashamedly proud of its people and places and
there's a whole raft of enterprises. Projects
include the Village Halls Service which keeps the buildings at the heart of any
community beating and the Big Energy Saving Network which tackles the issue of
fuel poverty that is worse in rural areas where there is limited access to the
mains gas network.
are important challenges facing everyone in Devon including affordable housing,
entrepreneurship, rural isolation and loneliness, the environment and
sustainability. But for every challenge, LOVE Devon has a
creative way of approaching it.If
you love Devon, get involved! Join in
with fundraising, access help and advice or simply spread the word. Go to Facebook (www.facebook.com/lovedevon2016/), Twitter (@LoveDevon) or Instagram (@Loving_Devon)
or the website www.devoncommunities.org.uk.
FROM THE GLOBE
you are self-isolating and need help with anything like shopping, urgent
supplies, posting mail, then myself, Nic, and my team will help if we can.
If in the event we have to
close during this period due to Coronavirus and the village is in shut down
mode, we shall be opening the kitchen lunch and dinner service, 7 days a week,
to supply food and deliver it in and around the village.
We shall not charge for
this service, only for the food and it will be a limited menu of good home
Telephone 01271 882465 or 07904657208 from
10.00 a.m. to 1.00 p.m./ 5.30 to 8.00 p.m.
NEWS FROM BERRYNARBOR PRE-SCHOOL
The children have enjoyed
this term's topic, Winter. They have explored ice, made an arctic display,
learnt about the animals that live there and how people should dress to keep
safe and warm in cold.
Maths has been taught with
children beginning to recognise numbers, sort items
into order, simple sums, name 2D shapes, say the opposite and know the position
of an item. We added stories to extend
the children's knowledge and vocabulary. These were then recalled and acted out by the
children in their play.
We celebrated World Book
Day with the children dressing up as characters of their choice and read new
and exciting books, and they enjoyed Pancake
Day practicing tossing pancakes with Julia in the Manor Hall.
We have supported the
children in talking about keeping well especially with recent news events,
trying to prevent the spread of germs as much as possible. We have encouraged more and better hand
washing regimes within our setting.
We enjoyed our visits to the Primary school this term. Thank you to Mrs. Welling who provided fun
activities, such as shaving foam, snow dough, and shared stories as well as
allowing the Pre-school children to explore the classroom and have a small
taste of school life there.
Thank you to Wendy and the
Berry in Bloom team who kindly donated plants and compost to help with our
gardening project. The children planted
up lovely winter pansy to give to their mums or someone special and helped to
tidy up the garden in readiness for spring.
Thank you to everyone who
supported our Bags2School collection. We are pleased to say that we raised £100.00 which will
go towards getting a climbing frame for the children.
We have another
fundraising event: our Quiz Evening on Friday 27th March.
staff at preschool
Karen, Lynne and Emma
"Congratulations flew fast and furious,
for it had unquestionably been one of the most successful 'shows' ever
undertaken by the squadron." This quote
comes from the book Biggles Learns to Fly, just one of nearly 100 Biggles short
stories and novels.
nick-named Biggles, is a fictional pilot and adventurer and hero of the
adventure stories written for young readers by Capt. W.E. Johns, who continued
to write Biggles books until his death in 1968.
William Earl Johns was born in Bengeo, Hertford, on the 5th February 1893, the eldest son
of Richard Eastman Johns, a fabric tailor, and Elizabeth, nee Earl. His early ambition was to be a soldier.
Not a natural scholar, from the age of
12, Johns attended Hertford Grammar School.
In 1907 he began a 4-year apprenticeship to a county municipal surveyor
and in 1912 was appointed a sanitary inspector in Swaffham, Norfolk. In October 1914, he married Maude Hunt, the
daughter of the Rev. John Hunt, vicar of Little Dunham, Norfolk, and in March
1915, William Earl Carmichael Johns, known as Jack, their only son, was born.
Johns had a distinguished military
career, beginning in 1913 when he enlisted in the Territorial Army as a Trooper
in the King's Own Royal Regiment [Norfolk Yeomanry] and finishing in 1931 when
he relinquished his commission from the Reserves.The Norfolk Yeomanry fought at Gallipoli until they were
withdrawn to Egypt. In 1916 he was
transferred to the Machine Gun Corps and while serving in Greece contracted
malaria. On his release from hospital,
he was commissioned into the Royal Flying Corps and posted back to England in
1917 for flight training, fist at Coley Park, Reading, and then at Thetford in
Norfolk, close to where Maude and Jack were living.
In April 1918, Johns was appointed flying instructor
at Marske-by-the-Sea in Yorkshire. The aircraft at that time were most unreliable and he wrote off three
planes in three days through engine failure - crashing into the sea, then the
sand, and then through a fellow officer's back door. Later, he was caught in fog over the Tees, missed Hartlepool and narrowly escaped flying into a cliff. Shooting one's own propeller off with a
forward-mounted machine-gun with malfunctioning synchronisation was quite a common
accident, and it happened to Johns twice.
During this time, his
probationary commission was confirmed and he served as a flying instructor
until August 1918 when he transferred to the Western Front.
He performed six weeks of active duty as a bomber pilot
with No. 55 Squadron RAF, close to the average in
the latter part of the war. This
squadron was part of the Independent Air Force, a section of the Royal
Air Force that had been formed for the purpose of bombing strategic targets
deep inside Germany.
On the 16th September 1918 he was piloting one of six De Havilland DH4s on their way to bomb Mannheim when his aircraft was hit by anti-aircraft fire and he was forced
to drop out of formation. He jettisoned
his single 250-pound [110 kg] bomb and turned for home, but was attacked
by a number of Fokker D.VII fighters. During a lengthy,
but one-sided battle, Johns' observer and rear-gunner, Second Lieutenant Alfred
Edward Amey, was badly wounded and the aircraft shot
down. Johns and Amey
were taken prisoner by German troops. Johns
had received a leg wound during the battle and was slightly injured in the
crash, but Amey died of his injuries later that day. Johns remained a prisoner of war until after
the Armistice of 11th November 1918.
After the war, Johns
remained in the Royal Air Force, apparently with the
substantive rank of Pilot Officer. His promotion to the rank of Flying Officer came in November 1920. He worked in central London as a recruiting
officer and rejected T. E. Lawrence [of Arabia] as an RAF
recruit for obviously giving a false name, but was later ordered to accept him.
By 1923, Johns had left his wife. His
RAF commission had been extended a further four years and he had moved to Birmingham, again working as a recruitment officer. It was here he met Doris 'Dol' May Leigh [1900-1969], daughter of Alfred Broughton
Leigh. They moved to Newcastle upon Tyne when Johns was posted
there. He never divorced Maude Hunt, but
Doris was known as Mrs Johns until her death. He continued to pay for his wife and son's
upkeep and for her nursing care, she suffered from acute arthritis.
On 15 October 1927, he was
transferred to the Reserves and four years later, in October 1931, he
relinquished his commission.
Johns' writing career began in 1922
when he wrote under the name William Earle, but later adopted the now familiar
name of Capt. W.E. Johns. His final RAF
rank of flying officer, equivalent to an army lieutenant, captain is commonly
used for the commander of a vessel or aircraft.
Johns' opposition to appeasement is
apparent in some of his writing, and more advanced in his thinking, for the
time, was the story of Biggles Air Commodore  which alludes to Japanese
preparations for conquest of British colonies in the Far East.
Apart from Biggles, his other
multi-volume fiction series were the 6-book Steeley
series [1936-1939], the 11-book series Worrals
[1941-1950], the 10-book series Gimlet [1943-1954] and 10-book science fiction
series of Tiger Clinton [1954-1963].
From 1953 until his death on the 21st
June 1968, and his cremation, Johns lived at Park House, Hampton Court Road,
Hampton Court in Middlesex.
WEST COUNTRY WALK - 179
A Head for Heights
At certain times, when travelling
towards Marazion from the direction of Penzance, you
may witness a strange sight - a procession of people appearing to walk across
the sea to St.
As you get nearer you will realise this
has been an illusion for at low tide it is possible to reach the island by
crossing a stone causeway. At high tide
small boats are on hand to ferry visitors across.
We walked over the large smooth slabs
of stone, arranged randomly, to the harbour and row of cottages below the
In 1044 a Benedictine monastery was
founded there by the monks of Mont St. Michel, Brittany. [The two mounts resemble each other.]
From the 12th century its potential as
a fortress was recognised and eventually in 1425 the Crown annexed it and the
monks were ejected.
In 1657 the St. Aubyn family bought it
and still have a connection with the castle though since 1954 the island has
been owned by the National Trust.
We climbed up the winding paths,
through the sub-tropical gardens; a vertiginous walk but we enjoyed
taking in the wide sweep of Mount's Bay.
Many of the people we passed were
treading very gingerly, watching their feet.
A few years ago, the advert for a new head gardener on St. Michael's
Mount stated that as well as horticultural expertise, he or she should have a
good head for heights and preferably an ability - or willingness - to abseil.
The lower slopes were sprinkled with
sky blue spring squill. The tide still
being out, we returned via the causeway stopping at intervals to scan the
sea. To the east we observed the
stately silhouette of a great northern diver [the loon in North America]. To the west along Marazion
beach several whimbrel rested on their spring passage.
Similar to but smaller than curlews
with a slightly shorter bill, the whimbrel can best be distinguished by the
dark stripes on its crown.
It is always fun to visit one of the
islands off our coast, no matter how small, but there is evidence that St.
Michael's Mount was once joined to the mainland as tree stumps have been
discovered in the sea around it.
PLEDGE FOR NATURE
It's Time to
for Nature is a new campaign, launched at the end of January 2020, that aims to
support and encourage communities in northern Devon to help nature to flourish. Actions might include creating flower and
insect-rich habitats, planting new woodlands, and improving our spaces for
involved with the campaign is a great way to get practical tips on what you can
do and to find out about many local projects and initiatives you can join.
for Nature is being co-ordinated by the North Devon Biosphere, a cross sector
partnership that is working to protect North Devon's unique natural
environment. It is supported by the
National Lottery Heritage Fund, Devon County Council and a successful Crowd
are invited to sign up to take action for nature at www.biosphere.org.uk/pledge-for-nature.'
BERRYNARBOR HORTICULTURAL & CRAFT SHOW
With many villagers
currently self-isolating, there should be time for crafters to indulge in their
art, knitting, embroidery, etc., and if the weather would improve, gardeners
can still tend to their plants and gardens!
However, even if restrictions are
lifted, this great village event cannot carry on without a group of volunteers
to run it. Sadly, so far, my plea has
fallen on deaf ears!
If you could give a little time to help
run this event, please do get in touch with me. If you have been put off by the list of what
running the show involves, don't worry, the jobs can be split between members
of the group and I am prepared to help as much as I can.
As I mentioned in the last newsletter,
there is enough money in the kitty to run another show, so no fundraising is
Please give serious thought to helping
out, it would be such a shame to see this well-supported long-standing show
speak to me in the Shop or ring me on  889131. Thank you.
MOVERS AND SHAKERS NO. 86
MICHAEL CHARLES ROBERT TURTON
known Mike for almost as many years as he's been running his shop in Ilfracombe
High Street, and am always cheered by his welcoming, "Good morning Mrs. P. -
it's a lovely day", or similar. At a
time when Ilfracombe is losing so many shops - and seemingly gaining a coffee
culture! - it is good that a traditional shop is continuing.
So how did he become a butcher? Well, it runs in the family. His father and
grandfather were in the same line!
Mike was born in Beckenham, Kent
to Lesley and Victoria Turton. He was
the second child. Elisabeth was the oldest and later came
Lawrence and Caroline.
After a secondary education, Mike left school at 16 and
worked at Trust House Forte as an apprentice chef. The family lived above his father's shop in Beckenham, and from a very early age, Mike was in the shop
at every opportunity.
In 1969, however, his parents decided on a change of
lifestyle and moved to Ilfracombe. They
bought a guest house in Oxford Grove and the family moved with them. It wasn't too long before they realised that
this wasn't really the life they wanted:
the butcher's business was too deeply ingrained. They sold up and
bought Mr. C.H. Chapple's
Butchery shop at 146 High Street in the town.
Some of you may remember the former owner. They had a ready-made member of staff, Mike!
Mr. and Mrs. Turton senior ran the shop for 20 years until
1989 when they retired. Early on, they
introduced the sale of cooked meats and cheese which really spurred on their
business, and that Mike has continued to this day.
In 1974 Mike married Sylvia Gear
and they had two sons, Daniel and Aarron, and a
daughter Stacey. Aarron
became an Environmental Health Officer and when we opened our shop, he came to
give it the hygiene all clear. Daniel
is a Chartered Accountant and Ilfracombe Councillor. One of his children, Evie, helps Granddad in
the shop on Saturdays during school holidays. Stacey lives and works in
Cheltenham for a Government Apprenticeship Company. Sadly, Sylvia died in 2005, aged just 50,
having been incapacitated for some time.
Luckily, Mike later found happiness with
Julie, his second wife, who has been a great help. If you've tasted any of the pasties, scones,
pies or pastries temptingly spread out in the shop, they are made by Julie with
occasional help from her mum.
"And a great job she does of it, too", adds Mike. They have a daughter, Courtney, now aged 13.
Local suppliers also benefit from his business. He buys
everything from the West Country. His
Devon Ruby Red Beef and lambs are from just up the road in Combe Martin, but
bacon, poultry, game, venison, cheeses and sea food don't use up many miles to
get here. His cooked meats are all made
on the premises. When I showed him the
August 2012 write-up about John Dennis, it reminded him of how well he'd got on
with John's father, Philip, who when he owned a turkey farm, used to supply
Turton's with Christmas turkeys.
Mike doesn't have too much time to relax, but when I asked
him about hobbies, he replied, "Family first, then walking, gardening, D.I.Y,
cycling, fishing, dancing". Oh! And he'd just returned from a week's
skiing! So, it can't be all work, but after the hours
he puts in over Bank Holidays, particularly Christmas, he must need some
activities to unwind.
The butchery and farming
professions have been hit hard by vegetarianism and veganism, and I dared to
ask him how he felt about this. He
replied diplomatically, "The public must make their own choice".
Apart from his business, he is always ready to help local
charities with their fund-raising and community work. I remember him being particularly helpful
when I did a fund-raising dinner some years ago. He has
also given professional talks and demonstrations to local women's organisations.
When you walk the length of Ilfracombe's High Street, it is
disconcerting to see how many premises stand empty. It's striking that three of the few
long-standing shops are family owned -
Pam Norman and Nick Pedlar, as well as Mike. They have survived not only for several
generations but also the opening of local supermarkets. Mike wants to emphasise
how much he appreciates his customers, old and new.
Many of us will dash into the supermarket because of easy
parking and getting most of the shopping under one roof, but particularly in
the present hard times, all our High Street shops will appreciate more support
from all of us.
So, Mike may not be a national 'Mover and Shaker', but
locally he would be greatly missed. It
is good that he supports nearby suppliers and that he can tell you exactly from
which farm his products come. As we
move through the seasons, he adapts his fare, be it flavours of sausages, meat
for barbecues, provision of laver, etc., all to enhance our taste buds! He says that he has now been in the butchery
business for nearly 50 years. Long may he continue!
PP of DC
OLD BERRYNARBOR - NO. 184
Again, for Easter I have chosen 3 early
postcards from my collection.
The first giving Easter Greetings was
printed in Germany, series 825. Whilst
I do not have details of the publisher, I should guess that the card dates back
to c1906. It shows two young girls
leaning on a large pink Easter egg, with a lamb breaking out. In the background are spring flowers and
second card is dated 1911 and has not been posted. The card shows three rabbits with the eldest
reading a book, and wishing A Happy Easter.
The card, published by Wildt & Kray of
London E.C., under their series 1183, is printed in Bavaria.
A Happy Eastertide, the third card,
again published by Wildt & Kray of London, has an
Oxford, March 20th 1907 postmark.
Showing a young lad with hat in hand and pushing an egg carriage
containing young chicks on board. The
message on the back reads:
With my best love.
Will send a piece of music later.
Thanks for your pc."
again like to wish all readers a Very Happy Easter 2020 and thank Judie for the
production of our Newsletter since the first publication in August 1989!
Cottage, March 2020