was with sadness that those in the village who knew Alastair from the many
facets of his life - at IlfracombeCollege, Ilfracombe Rugby
Club, Ilfracombe Golf Club and latterly Ilfracombe Male Voice Choir - learnt
that he had died peacefully at home following a short final chapter to a long
illness on the 10th February.Our
thoughts are with all his family and those who loved and cared for him in the
last few years, but particularly his sister Elaine and her family.
moved to Berrynarbor from the Midlands with
his parents, brothers Malcolm and Nick and sister Elaine in 1954.He completed his A Levels at IlfracombeGrammar School before achieving a
Combined BA Honours Degree in English and Physical Education at BirminghamUniversity.He taught at CombeMartinSecondary School, also Salisbury and spent three
years in his beloved New
Zealand at WanganuiTechnicalCollege.He became Head of English and then Head of
Sixth Form, Deputy Head and Acting Head of Ilfracombe College.He leaves wife Jill, son Simon, daughter
Kate and grandchildren Amy, Louis and Elliot.
thanks to everyone who attended Alastair's wonderful Thanksgiving Service and
for the cards, flowers, donations and messages of sympathy.Seeing IlfracombeParishChurch full of friends
and relatives and the extent of the love and respect which surrounded him was
both humbling and comforting.
Alan Bacon, former Head of Ilfracombe
College, gave an inspired and uplifting eulogy which was a fitting tribute to a
gifted and vibrant man, who touched so many lives before his illness, whether
through teaching, music or sport.He
will be sorely missed by many.
is with sadness we received details of the deaths of Jack Rollings and Margaret
Draper and our thoughts are with Phil and both their families.
JACK ROLLINGS [14.4.1929-28.12.2010]
Jack was the youngest of four boys and a girl
born to William and Maud Rollings who lived on Bedminster Down in Bristol.Jack was a twin to his sister Jean.During the war, Jean was evacuated to stay
with William andNellie Draper at Number
94 Berrynarbor [Jacobs Well] whilst Jack was evacuated to South
Devon.The twins pined for
each other, and eventually Nellie wrote to his parents to ask if Jack, too, could come to Berry to stay with
them.He settled into the family and thoroughly enjoyed himself,
reunited with Jean and becoming part of the Draper family.He went to school at Berrynarbor and later
Combe Martin, and when the war ended, returned to Bristol.He completed his National Service in the Royal Navy and went to work at
W.D. & H.O. Wills.A keen gardener
and an accomplished local footballer, he played for BathCity
enjoyed his time at Berry
so much that he spent many holidays and weekend breaks with his wife Margaret
in Ilfracombe, visiting members of the Draper family.His visit last year was his final trip.In August he was diagnosed with lung cancer
and after a brave struggle he passed away on the 28th December.
wife Margaret and his sons, John and Andy, will continue their visits to the
area Jack enjoyed so much.
MARY DRAPER [29.10.1926-24.1.2011]
was one of five children born to William and Nellie Draper at Number 94
Berrynarbor [Jacobs Well] -Winnie,
Phyllis and Sheila being the other girls and the one boy, Denzil.She was the middle child and the last of
the family to survive.She went to
school at Berrynarbor and later at Combe Martin
family moved to Ilfracombe in 1946 and resided at 14 Brookfield Place.She worked at the Salad Bowl in the High
Street and at The Co-op, Woolworths and finally until her retirement at
Coutants.In 1993 Margaret moved into
Clarence Cottages in Ilfracombe and stayed there until August last year when
she decided to move into the Susan Day Home.
was a bright and intelligent person with a sense of humour and fun, who would
often have a joke to tell.Quizzes,
crosswords and puzzles also provided much enjoyment.She was also quite an accomplished poet and
had at least two poems published, particularly acrostic poems, and included
them in any birthday cards she sent.She was a keen darts and skittles player and for many years was among
the organisers of the local leagues, serving on many committees and also
winning many trophies, individually and as a team member.Despite never marrying or having children of
her own, she adored them.Whether it
was her nephews and nieces, great nieces and nephews or the children of
was diagnosed with cancer three years ago and fought valiantly. However, the
struggle became too much and she died peacefully early on the morning of the
24th January.Her funeral was at
Emmanuel Church Ilfracombe on the 4th February.She is sadly missed by her nephews and
nieces who live in Barnstaple, Bristol, Scotland
and Canada.One of her published poems is below.
ST. PETER'S CHURCH
service for the Women's World Day of Prayer held in Berrynarbor on Friday, 4th
March, went smoothly and according to plan thanks to the Leader, Doreen Prater,
and all those who took part from the various churches, not forgetting our
Organist, Stuart Neale.There were 36
of us gathered together and our speaker was well received.The collection for WWDP charities amounted
Sunday is on the 3rd April at and we are looking forward to a Family Service with children
from the school and village.Do come
and join us - there will be bouquets for everyone!
Sunday will be celebrated on the 17th April, again at with distribution of Palm Crosses and
Easter Services will be as follows:
Friday, A quiet hour of prayer and meditation
with hymns and readings
Day, Family Communion.
Please look out for posters nearer the
time.The church will be decorated on
the Friday evening, 22nd April, and on Saturday.Gifts of flowers [which should be white] and
donations towards the cost of lilies may be given to Sue Neale, telephone
we go to press, we have heard that the Licensing of the new vicar, Yvonne
Yates, who has been appointed to live in Lynton and to be part of the North
Devon Coast Team, will take place in BerrynarborChurch on Monday, 9th
May, at We are honoured and it will be a busy time
with arrangements to be made over the next few weeks.
Aid Week begins on the 15th May this year and there will be an envelope
collection around the village.
will be a Friendship Lunch at The Globe on Wednesday, 25th May;the date for April has yet to be discussed -
it should be the 27th but this would be immediately before the Royal Wedding
and may not suit everyone.
Annual Meeting of the Church was held on the 14th March.Attendance was low, with only 9 people
present, most of whom were PCC
members and including Rector Chris Steed, who was welcomed and gave a
presentation of his vision for the Team.After some ten years of service, Doreen Prater has decided to stand down
as Churchwarden and she was thanked most sincerely for all she has done for St.
Peter's.She will remain on the PCC and will continue to take an active part in
church life.Sadly, no-one has come
forward to take her place - a situation which will be addressed by the PCC over the coming months.Due to other commitments, Jean Pell has
resigned from the PCC but will
continue to lend her skills when needed.The Curry and Quiz Evening in aid of the tenor bell is still
PCC now numbers 7:
Stuart Neale -
Sylvia Berry and
David Steed - Deputy Wardens
Marion Carter - PCC Secretary
Mary Tucker - PCC Treasurer
Sue Neale and Doreen Prater
are all available when needed - please do not hesitate to get in touch.Our new Rector can be contacted on the old
number - 883203
LICENSING SERVICE FOR CHRIS STEED
was a special day in this year's calendar, to celebrate the licensing of our
new Rector Chris Steed, held at LyntonParishChurch
on Wednesday, 16th February.
300 people attended the evening service presided over by Bishop Michael of Exeter.The North Devon
community was represented by members of all Parishes within the diocese,
together with civic dignitaries, including the Mayor of Lynton, the Devon
Police and Education and Religious leaders from many different churches and
was very pleasing to see several school children from the parishes, and we were
delighted that BerrynarborPrimary School was
represented - in particular, Macy Ivan who spoke beautifully when presenting
Chris Steed with a special Bible.The
teaching staff was represented by Carol Lucas, and Teresa Crockett, who also
sang with the Choir, represented the School Governors.
service and music were largely the choosing of our new Rector and as
Choirmaster it was a privilege to lead singers from Berrynarbor, Combe Martin
and Parracombe, together with other friends throughout the service.The Choir, some 22 members strong, led the
service and as a special request from Chris, performed Elgar's beautiful anthem
'Ave Verum Corpus'.A special thank you
must go to Pat Taylor who played the organ for the rehearsal and the licensing
Steed showed all his warmth and jovial personality throughout the proceedings,
and the hour long service was followed by a wonderful buffet - and grateful
thanks must go to the ladies of all parishes for providing sandwiches, cakes
and other refreshments.
the parishioners of Berrynarbor, welcomed Christ Steed to his first service at
St. Peter's Church on Sunday, 20th February, and together with BerrynarborPrimary School, under the Headship of Su
Carey, are delighted to have a Rector once again to serve all within the
Stuart Neale - Churchwarden, Organist and Choirmaster
We are sorry to report the sad loss of Ben,
the pony, who passed away at Moules Farm on 22nd February.He was a very old boy  and much loved
friend.We should like to say a big
thank you to Norman, Dave and family for their help, support and friendship
over the years.Also many thanks to the
local children who befriended Ben and helped make his life a happy one.
Janet and Malcolm Knight
three years ago, we, at St. Peter's Church, were asked to provide somewhere in
the churchyard where people who had family grave scattered throughout the
country, could have a focal point to remember family and friends and leave
flowers and wreaths.At the time, we
did not have any money to comply with this request.
the money from the collection taken at Mum's funeral and from donations, we
have been able to purchase this cross and have it erected in our churchyard,
thanks to your generosity.A vase has
also been placed in front of the cross for those who wish to leave fresh
am sure you will be pleased to know that already it is being used and we have
had some beautiful flowers left there.
WEATHER OR NOT
first week of January was wetter than the whole of December, although the total
of 156mm [6 1/8"] was fairly average for a month where rainfall varies
considerably.With strong, blustery
south to south westerly winds, it was reasonably mild until the 17th, then
overnight the temperature dropped away as pressure rose.The next few days were calm, still, cold and
frosty, then on the 24th the temperature recovered before falling again to
-4.2 Deg C at the end of the month, one of the lowest temperatures this
winter.The maximum temperature for the
month was 12.5 Deg C, about average, as was the wind chill of -11 Deg C.15.38 hours of sunshine were recorded, exceeding all previous years
apart from last year when nearly five hours more were recorded.
was milder;according to 'Spotlight' the
mildest since 2002, and the 9th mildest for 100 years.With a maximum temperature of 13 Deg C and a
minimum of 0.1 Deg C, it was the first month since October not to drop below
freezing.The wind picked up on the 2nd
and blew continually at strong to gale force for nearly a week, with a maximum
gust of 34 knots on the 6th.It was a
damp month, only the last day not having some precipitation, although the total
for the month was only 79mm [3 1/8"].Sunshine hours of 34.89 were above the norm, but did not reflect the
has come in 'like a lamb' - let's hope that the worst of the winter weather is
behind us and that there isn't a sting in the tail!
Simon and Sue
The latest news from the Manor Hall
concerns the refurbishment of the kitchen and the opportunity to report that
this project is well advanced, but there are still some important finishing
touches needed.The wooden panelling to
the walls and ceiling have been prepared for final decorating and a
certain amount of tiling will be needed.All should be complete by the end of March and we hope you'll be pleased
with the result.In stripping out the old
kitchen, you'd be amazed how much "clutter" we had to clear out in to
the magic wheelie bin, and in going forward, we need your help please to ensure
that there is no build up of such stuff in the future!Thank you.
A new supply of extra blue padded chairs is
in the pipeline as part 2 of the plan to phase out the plastic ones.This will take the total of this better
variety to over 70.Long may you sit
is a Health & Safety issue which I really must draw to everyone's attention.It concerns the Fire Alarm.It seems that a fault had developed on one
piece of the circuitry which probably caused a false alarm, but certainly for a
fault light to be activated on the Control Box just inside the front
door.To 'kill' the alarm,
someone switched off the mains power to the system but did not alert
anyone!The result was a period when
the Hall was without alarm cover!The
back-up batteries [there to keep the system alive should mains power ever be
interrupted] became discharged and the batteries had to be replaced, at a cost
approaching £45! I leave you to be
judge on this one but we must ask all Hall Users to be alert to
any issues arising and report any problems to myself or indeed anyone on
the Committee.An important matter like
this must never go unreported!
On a positive note, I'm pleased to advise
that Craig Hodgen and Geoff Adam have responded to my earlier requests for help
on the Hall Committee and have now joined the group.At the same time, at least one of our
long-standing Committee members has signalled intention
to step down at the next AGM,
so there is still room for an extra volunteer or two to help keep the ship
afloat and heading in the right direction.The AGM will be held on
Wednesday, 4th May at As usual, this is an open meeting and it
would be good to see a representative from the different user groups.
Colin Trinder - Chairman
THE CINEMA MAN
came across this advert the other day which read:'Home Cinema System, blog sonic XYZ + Home
Theatre System, complete with 6 speakers including subwoofer £100, etc.', and
it brought to mind my time when I lived at Tiptree.
was not long before I met a Mr. Chick Bright who, on coming out of the services
after World War II, was determined to have his own cinema.
he ran a temporary cinema at a hall in Tiptree, it was not long before he
acquired a bungalow with land at the side suitable for a cinema and enough land
at the back for a car park.
the plans were passed and the villagers heard about the new project, they were
interested enough to want to help with things like digging the footings and
even trundling loads of bricks from the station on hand pushed trolleys.
the cinema was near completion.Materials were in short supply and a problem arose regarding how to put
a ceiling in.Mrs. Bright came up with
a great idea!She went to the local
butcher and asked for all the carcass muslin covers which were generally
disposed of.She then washed them and
sewed them all together, making one huge piece which was suspended over the
auditorium and it is still there to this day!
cinema was called 'The Astoria' and was run by Mr. Bright and his family -
mother would be on the ticket kiosk, father would do the projection and the
daughters would act as usherettes.Mr.
Bright had an Adana
printing machine and would do his own posters to display around the
village.He also produced
a monthly 16mm version of 'Tiptree
News'.On one occasion he climbed the
jam factory chimney to show views of what Tiptree looked like 'from the air'.
went well for a while but attendances began to drop due to television becoming
available.After a while, Mr. Bright
decided that a change had to be made."I'll turn it into a dance hall", he said.But this was more easily said than done
because the floor was raked and would have to be levelled, and the radiators
were all at different heights.
when this was sorted there were dances on Saturday nights.But sadly, after each dance there was
trouble outside, which became a major problem, and so "I'm going to try it
as a cinema again," said Mr. Bright.
of course by now the floor had been levelled and the only thing to do was to
raise the screen, at the same time change the format from 4 x 3 to widescreen
[cinemascope], achieved by ropes from the projection box.On one occasion a rope dropped down and
knocked off a patron's hat!
was interesting to go into the projection box whilst a show was on.The clatter of the machines was like the
noise of a factory, reels were changed every ten minutes and there was a huge,
glowing valve kept in a metal box so that if it exploded it would do no harm.
music was provided by a quite ordinary record player and focus was checked by a
small pair of binoculars used through one of the projection ports.
again attendances dwindled and Mr. Bright had to think again.Fortunately, the cinema had been built with
a shop at the front and so Mr. Bright opened it for selling electrical
goods.The seats were all cleared from
the cinema and it was let for functions and dancing classes.
day when I was chatting to Mr. Bright, he told me that the BBC were broadcasting 'Workers' Playtime' from
there and that he had, for some reason, a direct line to the BBC.He
told me when it would be and that I was invited.
I completely forgot all about it until one day when we had the radio on and the
announcer said:"This week,
Workers' Playtime comes from Tiptree."Without hesitation I rushed around to the cinema where I was welcomed
with a "Quick, come in."The
stars of the show were the singer Ann Shelton and Cyril Fletcher.
Mr. Bright passed on and the cinema sold and the auditorium is now a large
white goods and electrical shop.However, if you go in and go to the far end and turn and look back, you
can still see the old projection ports.
Tony Beauclerk - Stowmarket.
NEWS FROM THE PRIMARY SCHOOL
is here and we've been enjoying the sunshine.What a difference it makes to be outside in the warm sun.Let's hope it continues.
a quieter term, we are gearing up for the summer.
took delivery of our Mystery Seeds from the Horticultural Show team on
Friday.The children will be working in
teams to sow and bring on the seeds and try and identify them.We shall be drawing, measuring and charting
the plants' progress and competing against each other to see who can identify
the plants first.The teachers were so
excited when we were planning the project that they have asked for a set of
mystery seeds for the staffroom!I'll let
you know how we get on!
took part in Red Nose Day last Friday - the children dressed in red and some
created wonderful outfits.Two weeks
ago we took part in Big Yellow Friday to raise money for the Children's Live
Disease Foundation - once again the children dressed up, but this time in
yellow.A cake sale in the playground
ended each day and we raised nearly £200 for these good causes.
since 1930 project was a great success.It was fantastic to have so many members of the local community to share
their memories with the children.Class
3 blacked out their classroom [there was a good reason for shutting the world
out - they weren't just being anti-social!] and Class 1 had an Anderson shelter in the corner of the
are planning an Arts Week for the last week of term and hope to include puppet
making, music and dance.Class 3 will
perform their production 'The Son Flower' - a musical with an Easter theme, on
Thursday, 7th April.
in Class 4 took part in a competition organised by Rotary Clubs UK.Lots of our children were very successful
and certificates will be presented on Friday, 1st April.The theme was Community Spirit.Lots of the children wrote stories or
reports.Tulsi chose to write a poem
which I have included below.
The Community Spirit Poem
The spirit of the
village is alive and well,
From the top of the
valley to the sound of the bell.
The old and the young
we all help each other,
From the children in
school to Father and Mother.
Everyone enjoys the
crafts at the show,
It makes us happy
when we are feeling low.
Our community shop
has all the vegetables and fruits,
We have jumble sales
and car boots.
In our carnival we
have lots of amazing floats,
And in the raft race
lots of sinking boats.
Our village won the
Village in Bloom prize,
Because it's so
beautiful it was no surprise.
Church and School,
We work together
because we love them all.
Su Carey - Head Teacher
WAKE UP BERRYNARBOR!
is a call to everyone to wake up to what we have and what we could so easily
lose if we don't act now!
have a superb Shop and Post Office facility that a lot of villages would die
for, yet it is being put at risk as not enough people are giving it sufficient
support, or in some cases no support at all!
the Shop is not in imminent danger of closing, but it cannot be expected to
depend on the summer visitors for its survival.Unless it gets a higher level of support
throughout the year it could fail.
Consider the consequences if this should happen.
up to the fact that many of the regular activities that make our community so
vibrant and active, revolve around the Shop.
do you pick up your Newsletter?The
do you learn about events for the School, the Church and the Village?The Shop.
do you buy your tickets for village activities?The Shop.
do you advertise your goods and services?The Shop notice board.
do you find details of goods and services you need?The Shop notice board.
do you pick up your newspaper or buy your stamps?The Shop
are you most likely to meet people, have a chat or whatever?The Shop.
Should the Shop go, these facilities will all go with it,
Wake up - the supermarkets can survive
without us, but the heart of our community - the Shop and Post Office - cannot.
USE IT OR RISK LOSING IT.
Shop needs extra purchases from all of us, no matter what else we do for
it.Being a shareholder, a volunteer or
a Shop Committee member is a superb contribution, but that only got the shop
started - it will not keep going without sufficient sales.
Just try to spend say £10 a week in the Shop
and its future will be secure.
Please note that I am only a volunteer.I have no connection with the Committee nor
does the Committee have any connection with this article or even necessarily
agree with the views expressed.
and Mrs. Baker - Shop [now Flowerdew]4.Petrol Pump [1/6d per gallon!]
Camp - Blacksmith6.Globe Inn - Mr. Cornish
45 [Miss Muffets]
SterridgeValleySheep being driven up
the Valley passing Woodvale on the right, and showing Barn Cottage further on,
on the left.The pictures dated about
1920 were sent by Don Thirkell, now of St. Column Major.
THE TICKING HEART OF BERRYNARBOR
The two faces of the clocks on St. Peter's
ChurchTower.One faces the lych gate and entrance to the church [south], the other
faces towards the Manor Hall [west].
The two different faces of the clocks was
the subject of an e-mail received recently, enquiring of the reason and asking
if the story that one of the faces was damaged by a stone being thrown for a
bet was true.Yes, that story is true
and took place about 60 years ago when one of the village lads was bet five
shillings [quite a lot in those days] that he couldn't hit the clock face.He won the bet!However, it is thought that the clock face
was repaired and so does not explain the reason for two different faces.Can anyone help with this?
Following on from this e-mail, two more
have been received from Martin Hooper of Australia who has sent the
The next time you are walking down the
High Street in Barnstaple, stop outside No. 99
and look up.There is a grand clock
which projects out from the building with two dials so that the time might be
seen from either direction.Look down also
at the stepping stones at the entrance and you will see J. F. Fox and Gaydon
[barely discernible] in outline.In
1882, the North Devon Journal reported on the improvements that John Gaydon had done
to the shop front at
High Street when the clock was
added and mention made also of his involvement with the Berrynarbor church
John Gaydon [b. 1821], second son of
Alexander and Susannah Gaydon of Swimbridge, was apprenticed during the 1830's
to Richard Passmore, a watch and clock maker and jeweller of High Street
Barnstaple.Alexander Gaydon was the
innkeeper of the New Inn, now the JackRussellInn
in Swimbridge.In 1846, John Gaydon
took over the jewellery and clock making business of the late Richard
Passmore.This was the beginning of
John's business in High Street which was to flourish for 50 years and has left
a lasting legacy, particularly by way of the church clocks which he installed,
upgraded, repaired and maintained.In
1897, the executors of John Gaydon's will sold the business to J. F. Fox.
to an old booklet from Berrynarbor church, the clock was installed in 1852 by
Farrington of Bristol and the striking train was added in 1888 by John
We normally only see the dials [or faces]
of the clock, but the ticking heart, the clock movement with its gears and
levers, is hidden away in the tower.The illustrated image below shows the
Berrynarbor clock movement.
this image, one can clearly see the cast iron posted
frame movement with its six  round
posts, all topped with acorn finials.This frame style for turret clocks was popular from about
1790 to 1850.The original four
 posts associated with the timekeeping train are on the left and centre
while the additional two  associated with the striking train are on the
right.These two trains of gear wheels
are mounted vertically as was the fashion in this frame type.The top end of the pendulum can be seen
coming from the top arbor [or axle] of the timekeeping train and disappearing
below the bottom of the image.
bevel gearing and the two leading off rods, which transmit movement to the
dials, are visible in the centre forefront of this image.Presumably the rod coming out of the image
goes to the west dial and the one leading off to the right goes to the south
dial.The internal setting dial would
be on the other side of the clock movement opposite to the position of the west
leading off rod.The dark black metal
framing on top of the movement was added to accommodate the two electrical
motors which now wind the timekeeping and striking sides of the clock.
second image shows in more detail the timekeeping train of 4 gear wheels with
the great wheel being counted as No. 1.
The Berrynarbor clock is most unusual as
it has two different dials.Two dials
are not unusual, but two different styles and sizes are.From the plaque attached to the clock, we
know that John Gaydon added a new dial as well as the striking train in
1888.The plaque reads:Striking Partand New Dial added 1888, John Gaydon, Clock Maker, 99 High St.Barnstaple.
What remains unanswered is which dial did
John Gaydon install?There are several
factors which suggest that the larger one was added in 1888.Firstly, the glazed skeleton dial is very
similar to the dials that John installed around that time at Lynton  and
Landkey .Secondly, if the larger
dial already existed it seems highly unlikely that John Gaydon, with his
extensive experience in installing turret clocks, would have recommended such a
small dial [3' dia.] for so high a church tower.Finally, all the other known dials that he
installed in North Devon churches across the
1870's-1890's were of the larger size [5' dia.].
presented above comes from '19th Century Gaydon Clock & Watch Makers',
which is in draft form and nearing completion.I anticipate publishing in three months' time.If anyone has more information on this
clock, I should be delighted to hear from them.
My sincere thanks to
Kevin Brooks for supplying the image of the Gaydon plaque.
Pat and Malcolm Sayer are delighted to announce the engagement of their
eldest daughter, Karen, to Nick Hawke from Witney in Oxfordshire.They are to marry here in the village church
on Saturday, 17th September.Congratulations!
ONE HUNDRED YEARS YOUNG!
On the 3rd April, Philton House is
celebrating a very special birthday, when Cecil Hodkinson, Pip Summers' father,
will reach the grand old age of 100!
Cecil and his wife, Ina, have lived in the
annexe alongside Pip and Tony for the last ten years, just a couple of years
after finally retiring at the age of 88 from the pottery he started in Braunton
in the mid-1950's.
Prior to this he had worked as a senior
metallurgist for a company in Coventry,
but unfortunately it went into liquidation causing him to look for a new
career.He considered what talents he
had that he could draw upon, and decided that his self taught Hebrew and Greek
had nothing to offer and the career of concert pianist was too precarious.Another interest was photography, and in
particular, colour photography, which at that time was in its infancy.It was, therefore, this hobby that he
developed into an occupation.With no
colour film available to the general public at that time, he found how to
produce colour prints from black and white negatives by multiple use of colour
filters.He worked free-lance for a
couple of large photographic companies for several years until colour negative
film came onto the scene and once again he had to search for a new way to
provide for his family.With his
family, he moved to Barnstaple in 1952 and
while continuing with the declining photographic work, studied the principles
of ceramic pottery.When satisfied he
knew enough about it, he opened Studio Ceramics, East Street, Braunton in 1955.
This he ran with his wife Ina, and later his daughter Pip, designing and making
pottery, specialising in gold and platinum lustre designs, until he retired
Many people in the village will have met
Ina on her visits to the shop for her weekly shopping, or when attending the Friendship
Lunch at The Globe or Coffee Mornings, but Cecil is not familiar to many
residents as unfortunately he is a bit unsteady on his feet these days so can
only get out and about by car, courtesy of Pip or Tony.
While not a true local, he loves the
village and is proud to be one of, if not possibly its oldest inhabitant.
Happy Birthday Cecil, and many happy
Pip, Tony and Family.
And so say all of us!
BERRYNARBOR WINE CIRCLE
circle was delighted to have a third visit from Jonathan Coulthard this
month.March hares weren't there but
there were numerous impressed mutterings and smiling faces when they sampled
his two whites, one rose and three reds!It is unusual to enjoy all presented wines; some can be too dry, too
sweet or a preference for a red wine, for example, means that whites just
aren't appreciated.This wasn't apparent
on this occasion and we were surrounded by members who agreed with us.
had a successful career in civil engineering at Heathrow until the '90's when
he felt a strong desire to change direction.Student life beckoned, at Plumpton College in East Sussex, which is the
only college in the whole of the UK offering degree-level courses in
Viticulture [the science of cultivating grapevines] and Oenology [the study of
wine].A further two-year's practical
experience in France
followed.He had the opportunity of
working in Australia,
so, as wine-drinkers, we are fortunate that whilst in France, he
heard of an opportunity to buy nine hectares, almost 23 acres, of vineyard near
Duras, south-west France
that included some semi-derelict buildings.This opportunity was seized as he knew his engineering skills could be
used to transform these into a home and premises for wine production and sales.'Domaine Gourdon' 2003 was his first
vintage;awards and international sales
have followed.We have invited him to
return for our next season and our invitation has been accepted.
Which reminds me . . . unfortunately,
our year is coming to an end.April and
May's evenings will be our last until we restart in October.
Tony Summers, our enthusiastic
Secretary, will enlighten us in April as we tap into South American
meeting includes formality, but there will be brevity too!
Our AGM, will be swiftly
followed by Jan Tonkin, who will entertain and treat us to an unexpected Asian
selection, from Sri Lanka.
Adam -Promotional Co-ordinator
BERRYNABOR UPHOLSTERY GROUP
Berrynarbor Upholstery Group continues to meet every Monday morning in the
Manor Hall.We carry out personal
projects to renovate and re-upholster favourite pieces of furniture, from
stools to sofas, armchairs to chaise longues.If you have a well loved chair or stool that is no longer looking its
best but that you hate to part with, why not bring it along and we'll help you
to apply some TLC to breathe new life into it.We are a very friendly group and a very inexpensive morning out.All we pay is £3 each to cover the cost of
the Hall and 50p for as many cups of tea or coffee and biscuits as you
want!We have trade accounts set up so
that the materials needed are available at virtually cost price.Call in at the Hall any Monday morning or
ring Tony Summers on  883600 for more information.
REPORT FROM THE PARISH COUNCIL
continues to enjoy minimal crime with only one crime being reported at the
February and March Meetings. Long may it continue.
have been received from the County and District Councillors.
There are several ongoing items: repair of the War Memorial, the Play
Area where Councillors remain unsatisfied with an Inspection which is the
reason why the swings are chained back to prevent use until a quotation has
been agreed for the replacement of the top bar, as corrosion has been noticed
with the present one. The Play Area is due to be inspected by a RoSPA
Inspector during March, whose Report will follow shortly after. Many of
you will have noticed a new Play Area sign which has been fixed to the gate. Following a request by Lee Lodge,
the leylandi trees at the Playing Field have been either felled or the branches
trimmed to let more light into the windows. The Electricity Supply provider
for the public toilets has been changed from EDF Energy to E-On for a more
competitive tariff. County Councillor Mrs Davis is
making arrangements for a sign to be fixed at Birdswell Lane to prevent large
lorries from accessing this who at present experience difficulty in turning. As always, Highways feature at
Meetings and all potholes and other issues are promptly advised to DCC
Highways. There have been a number of
Planning Applications to consider, for which a response has been sent to North
Devon Council Planning Department. The village has once again been entered into
the Best Kept Village Competition. There are also details about the Pam
Parker Map Award for individual children aged 5-11 years, the Primary School
and Sunday School. Please contact me or a Councillor if you would like more
details. We are in the process of revising
our Standing Orders. Ahead of the Meeting on 8th March,
there was a Public Meeting at which Alison Smith of DCC Public Rights of Way
gave an illustrated talk regarding the Definitive Map Review. The April Meeting will be the last
in the life of this present Council, with Parish and District Council Elections
being held on Thursday 5 May. There are 9 seats to fill and if you would
like a Nomination Pack, please let me know. Alternatively the forms can
be downloaded via the North Devon Council website:www.northdevon.gov.uk/electiontimetable
The deadline date for the return of the forms to the Electoral
Services Department is
on Monday, 4 April. This is the perfect time to thank Councillor Mark
Adams and Councillor Mrs Worth for all their input during the time that they
have been Councillors and it is very much hoped that their departure is not
Squire, Parish Clerk
GROUP KNIT IN
the afternoon of Valentine's Day, the Manor Hall was a veritable hive of
industry with some 30 ladies clacking their needles - knitting and nattering
whilst producing colourful strips for the North Devon Hospice to have made into
blankets.These are then given to
deserving causes including Age Concern, David Rundle Rwanda Trust, Amigos and
even for our four-footed friends at the Dogs' Trust.
joined other visitors for tea and cakes and all participated in the
raffle.£270 was taken to the Hospice,
together with 38 yards, 1 foot and 1 inch of strips - no, not all knitted that
afternoon!Thank you to everyone who
came to support this event.Since the
first Knit In, Berrynarbor Knitters have raised more than £3,000 for the
forget, the Craft Group meets every Monday afternoon, from Just come along and bring whatever craft you are working on at the
moment - knitting, sewing, embroidering, painting, card making, etc.
We enjoy tea on arrival, tea and chocolate
biscuits later, and great company - and all for £2.00.Why don't you come and join us?
. . . and what a 'bumper' one it was!By the time the door opened, a long queue had formed outside the Manor
Hall and for the best part of the next hour and a half, the hall was a seething
mass of people from far and wide, including a group of Combe Martin Senior
Citizens who had hired Mark and his mini-bus to bring them and take them back.
hunters picked over the large variety of clothes and fabrics, looked through
the selection of books, videos and DVD's
whilst enjoying a cup of tea, took their chance on the raffle and searched for
that elusive ceramic that might be declared a rare antique on the 'Road Show'!
to Vi and Ann, and all their helpers, on a well-organised sale.
thanks to all the helpers and people who donated to make the event such a
success.A total of £484 was raised and
has been divided between Macmillan Cancer and Devon Air Ambulance.
good folks of Berrynarbor, and friends from far and wide, turned up in their
masses at the Manor Hall for an evening of quizzing under the direction of
expert Quizmaster Phil Bridle and Tracy, his assistant.With many teams taking part, quizzing began
in earnest only to be put on hold during a break to enjoy a delicious supper of
cottage pie and beans.That set off a
good start to the second part of the evening and there was a general sigh of
relief when the music section was aborted - often the decider when the younger
quizzers and their iPod's know all the answers!
Hoi Polloi's reigned supreme, team Sterridge Bottom lived up to its name and
Better at Darts were seen leaving the hall with an enormous flower pot, their
prize for winning the Gardening section.Congratulations to everyone involved in organising a great evening
raising over £600 for Berry
in Bloom and the Horticultural and Craft Show.
THE GREAT BERRYNARBOR PLANT SALE
Bank Holiday Monday, 2nd May 2011
Doors open at
welcome from ]
Trees and Shrubs,
Herbaceous Perennials, Fruit and VegetablesIndoor and Pot Plants,Bedding
Teas, Garden related
Berrynarbor Community Shop
PANCAKES & RAFFLE
SATURDAY, 23RD APRIL, to
at Easter Barton,
Castle Hill [01271
All proceeds to
Berrynarbor Toddler Group
[From the free car
park, carry on up the hill keeping straight on at the hairpin bend by
Thursday, 12th May,
Manor Hall, Berrynarbor,
Horizon, a sell-out at the 2010 Edinburgh Fringe Festival is about the female
pioneers of aviation.Using luggage,
maps and paper airplanes, Idle Motion take us back to the roaring twenties when
flight was glamorous and exciting.Flitting between modern airport lounges and the wild days of early
aviation, this is a story about conquering fears and the life affirming joy of
exploration and facing up to challenges.
This young, physical
theatre company from Oxford
has big ideas and a huge passion for creating exciting, fun and beautiful new
work.Its filmic style is highly
visual, combining strong narratives and bold theatrical images.
Dinner cost £12.00
must be purchased in
advance for catering purposes and are available from the Community Shop or from
Proceeds from this
event will be shared between the
Manor Hall and the
BERRY IN BLOOM & BEST KEPT VILLAGE
have got off to a really good start this year, with a very successful fund
raising quiz night at the Manor Hall in February, followed by a well attended
and helpful meeting in The Globe and at the first litter pick of the year we
had so many good folk attend that we almost ran out of roads to send them
on!It is great to know that the village is pulling
together to try and equal our win in the Best Kept Village competition last
year, and help us in our efforts to get Gold in the National R.H.S. Britain in
Bloom competition 2011, where we'll be representing the South West.Two Bloomers went all the way to Liverpool for a seminar and two to Weston- Super-Mare for
the launch of the South West competition.Our next event, in conjunction with the Horticultural & Craft Show
group, will be a Coffee Morning on Saturday, 16th April.
We have decided to use Streamways Nurseries again
for the hanging baskets and if you want to join in this scheme we'll be collecting
and taking the baskets over to Georgeham in the next week or so.Please ring Wendy on  882296 if you
would like to participate.
also set the dates for the two Gardens Open events this year.12th June for the Village gardens and 3rd
July for the SterridgeValley.Once again Phil and Lyn at the Lodge and Ken
and Judie at Chicane have kindly agreed to put on the scrummy cream teas, so
please make a note in your diaries of the dates and as we are always looking
for fresh 'mud', if you would like to open your garden please let me know.
is a special cake for Easter, perhaps with a little more work and what you may
think a strange ingredient - butternut squash.But just think how moist carrots make a carrot cake and give it a try!
3 medium free range
160g caster sugar
200g peeled and
grated butternut squash
120g white rice flour
3 tbsp good quality
cocoa powder [not drinking chocolate]
80g ground almonds
1tsp bicarbonate of
[sold in Sainsbury's]
For the icing
50g unsalted butter
200g icing sugar
4 tsp cocoa powder
Small pinch of salt
Mini Easter eggs,
little chicks etc. to decorate
Preheat the oven to180 Deg /350 Deg /gas
mark 4.Line 2 sandwich tins
measuring18cm x 5cm deep with baking parchment and lightly brush base and sides
with vegetable oil.
the eggs and caster sugar in a large bowl using electric beaters for about 4
minutes or until pale and fluffy.Beat
in the butternut squash, ground almonds, flour, baking powder, cocoa powder,
bicarbonate of soda and salt.Add the
buttermilk and beat until all the ingredients are well blended.
the mixture in to the tins evenly and bake in the oven for 30 minutes.
cooked, remove from the oven, turn them out of the tins and take off the lining
paper.Cool on a wire rack
the icing while the cakes are cooking, but do not ice the cake until completely
cold.Beat the butter with 100g of the
icing sugar in a large bowl using the back of a wooden spoon, this
some patience but when you reach a
lovely rich paste beat for a further 10
butter further.Add the Mascarpone
cheese, cocoa powder and salt as well as the
remaining icing sugar, beat until
Pop the icing in
the fridge for 15 minutes, then just
before using beat
it again and use to ice the 2 cakes
together in the middle and
top.Decorate with your
decorations and enjoy a lovely tea.
REFLECTIONS - 49
was in the kitchen making the first pot of tea of the day, my thoughts mulling
over the subject matter for this article.With the kettle nearing boiling point, I switched on the radio and heard
the pips for .I listened to the headline news and
immediately felt a shiver run down my spine.Not again, I thought.Surely
I explain, let me first complete the tale of my hideous journey home, or that's
how I saw it at the time after an evening out in South
Molton.Earlier on I had
taken the dogs for their last walk of the day along the lane and sensed a
strange feeling in the air.Low clouds
were racing across the sky.Gusts of
wind were whistling through the hedgerows.Birds were rarely stationary, flitting from one branch to another.Their hurried, high-pitched trills portrayed
an inexplicable sense of anxiety - but what about?Some sort of impending danger, perhaps?The horizon was, after all, eerily red and
angry in the west.
my journey to the South Molton restaurant was
uneventful, my return leg was to be full of incident.Opening as I did another bottle of sparkling
water at my table, I was completely unaware that the clouds outside were also
pouring out their supply of liquid.Their quantity, however, not only surpassed the amount drunk during our
meal, it also exceeded the average level of rainfall for the period of time I
was dining, by far!Returning to
Ilfracombe was to become, as I progressively discovered, almost impossible.
pelting raindrops lashing my windscreen, I eventually reached Wrafton, only to
meet signs reading "ROAD
CLOSED".At Muddiford I met a
lake of water beneath which the road disappeared.On back roads I met streams of cars, some
stationary and others reversing, the latter drivers having accepted that the
lane ahead was impassable.With the
rain unrelenting I travelled along the A39 - my last chance, it seemed, of
getting home.Eventually reaching
Churchill Down, I navigated the wooded, zigzagging descent and turned the final
hairpin bend in preparation for the ascent up Winsford Hill.As I came around the corner my hope was to
cross the tributary which flows into the small lake within Woolley Wood.The lake, however, along with the River Yeo
which meanders close to the road before also entering the lake, had completely
submerged the road.
came to a halt.In the distance I was
able to make out two white headlights of a large vehicle; lights that vanished
momentarily, only to be replaced by two red spots which then faded into the
distance.Having obviously turned round
to head back up Winsford Hill, I realized that my little vehicle stood no
chance of wading through the water.Time
to do the same - except my U-turn would be on a descending hairpin bend!No other vehicles, thankfully, came around
once again, my little car and I drove off into the rural darkness.Feelings of fear, anger and frustration began
to fill me.A fear of being alone and
stranded in the dark.Frustration that
I had not read nature's warning signs.Anger that I had moved away from the urban life I had always been used
to - a lifestyle with people always around me and a night sky that was
permanently lit.Now all I had were the
occasional reflections of sheep's eyes and the sound of raindrops stamping upon
my car roof to keep me company.
was therefore relieved to see once more the lights of Barnstaple.From here I decided to take the A361.Perhaps the road would no longer be
closed?Not so.Braunton was flooded.The road, I was told, would not be open until
daybreak at the earliest.The Highways
man did, however, tell me that colleagues were busy at work clearing the road
at Muddiford.It was worth a try, he
suggested.Thankfully, the road was just passable; although the
amount of silt and sludge cleared to make it so was quite incredible.'The power of water!', I thought, as I headed
journey that normally takes three-quarters-of-an-hour had taken nearly
four.It had been the worst rainfall I
had ever had to encounter whilst driving.'What an ordeal!', I kept saying when I told people about it the
following week.But on the seventh day
I stopped telling my story; for one week after my ordeal, to the exact hour
almost, thetrue power of
water began to show its force.Whilst I
slept soundly during the early hours of Boxing Day, a Tsunami struck Indonesia with
the shiver that ran down my spine.As I
was contemplating this article, making that first pot of tea of the day, I
listened instead to the shocking news that was breaking of the Tsunami in Japan.
wish you a peaceful Easter.Let this be
a time when we are grateful for all the beauty that is coming to life in our
countryside.For that is what spring is
At 9 Berrynarbor Park,
Please come and
help raise funds for the North Devon Hospice, and join us in a celebration of
Enjoy a Cream Tea
and lots of chat!We'll hope to get
you to buy some raffle tickets, select delicious cakes, see what we have on
our home produce stall and guess the name of a lovely toy that has been
This is our third
such event and we hope to raise as much as we can for this worthy cause.We also hope for a lovely day, but the rain
hasn't stopped us having fun before - there will be outside cover and we'll
use every inch inside if that is necessary!
Hope to see you
of you know Inge.She lived at
Sherrards in Barton Lane
and was a very active member of the Church, Wine Circle and Craft Clubs.Due to ill health, she is now at the Park
Care Home, Park Lane,
is proving difficult for her to get back to Berrynarbor as often as she would
wish, but she would dearly love visits from her old friends and acquaintances
from the village.
you are in Barnstaple, especially in the St. John's Garden Centre
area, please try to pop in and see her at Park Lane.For any further information on directions on
how to find the Home, please ring me on  882822.With thanks.Y.D.
you heard of Reverend John Brown of Haddington, East
Lothian, and his 'self-interpreting Bible' which was first
published in 1778?It was very popular
in its day and many editions were sold.
Bible has explanatory notes to help readers to understand the text, and some
Victorian editions had beautiful, coloured
illustrations with space to record family details.
Brown would today be described as a disadvantaged child.Born in 1772 to poor parents, he was
orphaned while young, and became a shepherd boy.
great reader, and with an astonishing talent for languages, he taught himself
Greek, Latin and Hebrew, for his dearest wish was to become a clergyman.
achieve his aim, John Brown earned a living as a pedlar and self-educated
school teacher, overcoming many obstacles along the way.
John Brown, Clergyman, Theologian, Scholar and Linguist, died in 1787 in
Haddington, where he had been a much loved clergyman for 36 years.
was Calvin Coolidge who said of him - 'Nothing in the world can take the place
John Calvin Coolidge
[1872-1933] - 30th President of the United States
John O'Groats to Land's End
for CLIC Sargent, Caring for children and young people
with cancer and their families in hospital and the
is what Walter's son, Malcolm will need when he begins his cycle journey from
John O'Groats to Land's End!Accompanied by Joanne Tucker as a fellow
Cyclist and Pat Redwood, their Support Crew they will be riding End to End in
June this year, to raise money for Clic Sargent.
was the moving force for this cycle ride, as a colleague's son is suffering
with a tumour and she is giving up most of her holidays to achieve this.Pat has recently retired but has offered her
vehicle and herself for the trip.Married and with a close family, this is a
very generous gesture.She will carry
the kit, tents, etc.Malcolm, too, is
giving up some of his holidays to do the trip.
for their efforts can be made on-line - where you can also track their progress
- at www.virginmoneygiving.com/team/jo_gle
or there is a collecting box in our Shop and Post Office for you to make a
donation to this very worthwhile cause.
is planning to hold a Car Boot Sale to raise money and asks that if you have
something, in the attic or shed, that you no longer have use for, you might
donate it for this purpose.Items can
be taken to the sale or collected.Look
out for more details of the sale.
thanks you for your kind support and we all wish him the best of luck and good
How nice to be able to give a warm welcome
to some new babies and our congratulations to all the parents and grandparents
. . .
. . . and in this case, great-grandparent
!Ron Toms is very proud and delighted
to share the news that he has a new great-grandson.Shaun Tyler Bolt arrived on the 4th
February, a second child for Darren and
Jane, a little brother for Sophie and a very
welcome second grandchild for Sheila and Tony.
and Lee Beer are pleased to announce the safe arrival of Ollie Joe Sunny, who
was born on the 20th January, weighing 6 lbs 101/2oz, a gorgeous little brother
for both Louis and Ben.
and Lee wish to say a huge thank you to grandparents Anne and Brian for all
their help, especially their 'meals on wheels' and we hope you enjoy your 4th
Alan and Anne are the very proud grandparents of new arrival Leeana Brooke
Bacon.Matthew and Gemma are delighted
to announce Leeana's arrival on the 31st January, weighing 9lbs, a little
sister for Dylan, Lola and Summer.
FROM OUR COMMUNITY SHOP
of all, thanks go to all who have increased their shopping even a little in the
last month.It's made a
difference.And, as from the 1st April,
the Shop will remain open until
We now have a whole new range of goods
in the shop.Do look out for the Red Cowrange of
prepared frozen meals such as Lamb Tagine, Chilli con Carne, Moroccan Meatballs
and a selection of vegetarian meals. This is an Exmoor
farm, specialising in pedigree Red Devons, and native sheep and pigs. All food
is prepared in their own kitchen and is excellent.
Cherry's cup cakes are local and very
good;Dunstaple Farm is providing new brands
of ice cream;you can buy a pack of frozen pastries to bake at home
[delicious!];a new selection of cakes: chocolate
muffins or a slice of lemon cake is on offer; a cheaper range of yoghurt is available
as well as Stapleton's; and bird feed is down in price as Anita and Debbie buy it in bulk and
pack it themselves.
All these new items - not bad for a two
month gap since our last News!
Friday.If you order your fish
by on Thursday,
it will be ready for collection by on Friday.
Easter eggs and cards are now on
is proving quite an attraction, so do have a look when you are next in the
Shop.And, of course, if you have
anything new or nearly new, particularly a craft, please bring it along, ready
priced and we'll see if it will sell - 80% to you and 20% for the Shop.
may have noticed in the shop a leaflet about reflexology.This is now available at our shop [upstairs]
on Thursdays.For information or to
book an appointment, please 'phone Liz Lillicrap on  882179
forget our Great Plant Sale on Monday 2nd May - both to provide plants and to
buy them!Enquiries to Kath
Thorndycroft Tel: 889019.
will also be the usual Golf Tournament that same weekend - details later in the
finally, treat Mum on 3rd April.Recipes [and ingredients] for a chicken dish, a vegetarian one and an
easy pudding are all in our shop, plus, of course, a great selection of cards.
Happy Easter from Anita, Deb and the Shop Committee
Wise words about when and when not to speak
your thoughts came from Will Rogers, the American political sage and
philosopher [cowboy, actor, comic], who died in a plane crash in 1935.Here are two of his maxims:
Never miss a good
chance to shut up, and
Lettin' the cat out
of the bag is a whole lot easier than puttin' it back.
Think About It
If you find yourself troubled by where you
live, the people around you, or the environment you work in, hear what the
philosopher Eusebius had to say about the matter.He lived in Caesarea
in the third century BC, and the simplicity of the thought he gave is as true
now as it was when first uttered:
Remember, a sunbeam
passes through pollution, unpolluted.
Because salt mines are clean, and have a
constant temperature of 14 degrees, they are useful for storage.During the Second World War, it is believed
that the Crown Jewels were kept in Winsford Mine, Cheshire.In 2004, the Government gave permission for the mine to become a dump
for toxic waste - a plan fiercely opposed by the local inhabitants.
The bottomless Dozmary Pool, in the middle of
bleak and barren Bodmin Moor, Cornwall,
is where Arthur's knight, following Arthur's instructions, cast away Excalibur and
a woman's arm, clad in white, rose out of the water, clasped the sword and sank
back beneath the surface.Excalibur
lies there still.The cold, black,
lifeless water does not entice anyone to dive in and look for it.
LOCAL WALK -
walk along the River Taw in late spring, from Seven Brethren Bank to Elmpark
Copse opposite Bishops Tawton.
the retail park was left behind, there was blossom along the path:elderflowers and the creamy white
flower-heads of guilder rose [Viburnum opulus],The outer row of flowers are three times the
size of the flowers at the centre, but they are sterile.It is the small florets which secrete
nectar.The guilder rose is an
attractive shrub with leaves divided into three lobes.
path passed under the old disused railway bridge;now a footbridge from RockPark
opposite.The bushes were full of the red and yellow
flashes of a charm of goldfinches.The
air was full of swallows.As the river
curved beside Pill House and Rumsam, we passed beneath the second bridge - this
time the great concrete structure of the by-pass.
shelduck were standing in a damp field next to a patch of yellow flag
irises.A female kestrel hovered overhead;swooped;caught a small rodent.
we came to the third bridge - the railway bridge carrying the Tarka Line.A train rumbled over it as we
approached.The ground was covered with
the mauve flowers of bush vetch.There
were also the deeper purple flowers of common vetch.A male stonechat perched on some brambles
sounding its eponymous alarm.
climbed the steep path which led to Elmpark Copse, full of the blue spikes of
bugle and brown and cream speckled wood butterflies.But we did not manage to get far because the
little wood was overgrown and we had to turn back.
this turned out to be serendipitous because as we returned along the riverside
path, between the copse and the railway bridge, we heard an unfamiliar sound -
couldn't recognise it at all - a noisy chattering, a loud rattling coming from
some twiggy bushes.
located the strange noise.It was being
produced by what appeared at first glance to be two whitethroats.They certainly had white throats but were
slightly smaller and greyer with shorter tails and darker faces.
tiny birds were actually lesser whitethroats [Sylvia currucua].They are summer visitors and passage
migrants and the south-west of England
is on the edge of their range.They are
more secretive than the more common whitethroat, seeking mature hedgerows,
scrub and dense ground cover.
unintentionally funny description of a lesser whitethroat, in one of my field
guides is:'a relatively short-tailed
warbler with retiring habits'!
Illustrated by Paul Swailes
FIDO'S LAVATORIAL LAMENT
When your dog does
its 'business' out walking
And you don't want
the neighbourhood talking
Just pick up a stick
And with one little
It's away from the
footpath - how corking!
When in the hedge
bottom they're laid
They soon start to
But it seems a bit
To wrap them in
And put them on
People fling them in
hedges and trees
Where they flutter
about in the breeze
They just hang where
you toss 'em
Among the spring
Shrink-wrapped, and a
cause of unease!
So please, simply
flick poos aside
Or bag them and BIN
them with pride
For we doggies feel
With our 'doings'
displayed far and wide!
DC of C Cottage
THAT'S A GOOD IDEA!
a recent Newsletter I introduced the idea of setting up an Emergency List for
those needing care of an animal in a short term emergency, for example, a
hospital visit, a visit to a relative, a need for a day out, etc.
people approached me and said what a good idea they thought it was, but only
two signed up to the scheme.
Christmas I have been contacted twice for help and someone willing to help has
been found.The kind of help has been
for dog walking, or just letting the dog out, cat feeding or caring for
have decided that instead of having a list in the Shop, it would be simpler if
people 'phoned me on  882822, and I'll co-ordinate help.
course, this will have to be a two-way scheme - we need volunteer helpers as
well as requests from those needing help.
give me a ring for more information if you would like to help.
HORTICULTURAL & CRAFT SHOW
are having a Coffee Morning to raise funds for the Show and Berry in Bloom on Saturday, 16th April, from
to .There will be stalls and a raffle, as well
as a chance for you to collect your sunflower seeds and potatoes to grow for
time to get those cameras out and sharpen those pencils ready for the Show,
which this year will be held on Saturday, 20th August.We are pleased to announce the art and
photography categories as follows:
Photography [maximum size 8" x 5"]
4.The Colour Red
Art [any medium, any size, but not TOO large please!]
We really look
forward to seeing your artwork and photographs in August!
See you all at the
Coffee Morning on 16th April.
SHAKERS NO. 32
Reformer and Co-founder of National Trust
3rd December 1838-
13th August 1912
The women Movers and Shakers are taking over
. . . here is a Victorian philanthropist who, amongst other works, helped found
the National Trust in 1895.The other
founders were Sir Robert Hunter and Canon Hardwicke Rawnsley, but this is
Octavia Hill's story.
was born in Wisbech Cambridgeshire, the eighth daughter [hence her name] of
James Hill, a corn merchant and banker, and his third wife Caroline. He had
been widowed twice and had 5 daughters and a son by these marriages. Impressed
by Caroline's writings on education, in 1832 he engaged her as governess to his
children [shades of Baron von Trapp!] and married her in 1835.Both were committed to helping people in
poverty.Octavia knew about that, as two
years after her birth, the family's comfortable life ended with James being
made bankrupt and then suffering mental problems.
had no formal education, her mother teaching her at home, and at the age of 13,
a cooperative guild offering employment to 'distressed gentlewomen' accepted
her for training as a glass-painter.The guild then expanded to offer toy-making for poor children.Octavia must have been very bright because a
year later, at the age of 14, she was invited to take charge of the
workroom.Through her work, she
discovered the dreadful living standards of her poor students.A year later, in her spare time, she helped
John Ruskin in DulwichArtGallery
and the National Gallery and shortly afterwards, began her charity work.
of her ideas, backed by John Ruskin, was affordable housing for the working
classes.She didn't agree with council
housing, feeling that it was too impersonal.Octavia was determined to find better homes for her students and through
Ruskin, became the landlord of 3 cottages in Marylebone, each with 6
rooms.These needed a lot of work, but
when finished they were rented to poor tenants.Ruskin wanted a fair return for his money, which she successfully
achieved.She was put in charge of 5
more.With careful management, by 1874
she and her staff had 15 housing schemes and 3000 tenants to look after.She was a firm believer in self-reliance and
she and her staff knew all their tenants, encouraging them to try to improve
their lot.As a basis of her successful
operation, only women were employed to collect rents weekly, when a detailed
check was made of the premises.The
collectors acted as early social workers. An American admirer put it that she was
'ruling over a little kingdom of three thousand loving subjects with an iron
sceptre twined with roses'.
appearance she was, as her friend wrote 'small in stature with long body and
short legs.She did not dress, she only
wore clothes, which were often unnecessarily unbecoming;she had soft and abundant hair and regular
features, but the beauty of her face lay in brown and very luminous eyes . .
.her mouth was large and mobile but not
improved by laughter . . . Miss Octavia was nicest when she was made passionate
by her earnestness.'
thing that Octavia felt very strongly about was that her tenants should have
access to open spaces.She believed in
'the life-enhancing virtues of pure earth, clean air and blue sky'.She was instrumental in saving Hampstead
Heath and Parliament Hill Fields from being built upon, and the first person to
use the words 'Green Belt'.In 1883 she
helped fight a campaign to stop the building of railway tracks from quarries
overlooking Buttermere in the Lake District
[High Speed Train objectors please note!]. The leader of this campaign was
Canon Hardwick Rawnsley, an Anglican clergyman in the Lake
District, who was not only a conservationist, but also the most
prolific writer of sonnets and composer of hymns.He recruited Octavia and Sir Robert Hunter,
solicitor to the Commons Preservation Society and Octavia's legal adviser in
her work protecting open spaces in London.All were concerned about the lack of control
over development and industry around the country and in 1885 they founded the
National Trust.This was to ' . . act as
a guardian for the nation in acquisition and protection of threatened
coastline, countryside and buildings'.
1907, Parliament passed its first National Trust act, giving the trust powers
to protect properties for the benefit 'for ever, for everyone'- now its motto.Since their first acquisition of Dinas Oleu
coastline in Wales in 1895, the Trust to date now cares for approximately
612,000 acres of beautiful countryside in Britain, plus 709 miles of coastline,
215 houses and gardens, 40 castles, 12 lighthouses and 43 pubs and inns!All this is completely independent of the
government. Their finances rely solely on the generosity of its over 3.5
million subscribers and other supporters. So when next at Arlington Court,
Dunster Castle, Killerton, Knightshayes Court, Castle Drogo or further afield
remember that our annual subscription really counts!
living through the beginning part of the 20th century,
Octavia Hill made it clear that she was against
Female Suffrage, saying, 'Men and women help one another because they are
different, have different gifts and different spheres'.She never married, although she had a
short-lived romance with Sir Edward Bond, a famous English librarian.
She died of cancer at her home in Marylebone on the 13th August 1912
aged 73, and although famous in her day, has been largely forgotten until
recently.For the National Trust's
centenary celebration, a beautiful pink rose was named after her.
highlight all her work would need several volumes, but hopefully this has given
some idea of a very remarkable lady.
Oh!If you find yourself in Wisbech, it would be
worth spending some time at her Birthplace House, a handsome Georgian house
overlooking the River Nene.Part of it
was bought in 1994 and opened as a museum.In 2007, National Trust bought the rest of the house, expanding the
museum, and adding an education centre and tearoom.This opened for the first time on 16th March
OLD BERRYNARBOR VIEW 130
Opening of New Road, March 1920
the Newsletter of June 1991, I described the Landslip which occurred on the
coast road between Combe Martin and Ilfracombe in January 1919.As an introduction to this issue's article,
the postcards from that article and part of the article are reproduced here.
'The landslip occurred about on the 10th
January 1919, and these pictures were taken by Phillips & Lees
of Ilfracombe the following morning.They show clearly the severed road and gas main just above Golden Cove on the OldCoastRoadbetweenWatermouthCastle's Sawmills and
William Garratt took
these two photographic postcards from the new road in the 1920's.Numbered 97 and 102 they are the only
postcards I have from the new road.
formal opening of the new road, which shortens the distance between Ilfracombe
and Combe Martin by about a quarter of a mile, took place on Wednesday of last
week, Mrs. Penn-Curzon, wife of Major Penn-Curzon of WatermouthCastle,
performing the ceremony.It will be
recalled that a serious landslide occurred in the early part of 1918 on the
cliff face near Watermouth over which the Ilfracombe - Combe Martin main road
ran at a height of about 250ft
above the level of the sea.The portion
of the main road affected was at once closed, and traffic diverted through BerrynarborVillage.At first it was thought possible to avoid
the landslip by a short deviation out farther into the cliff face, but very
quickly the landslip extended in either direction, until about 200 yards of roadway have now either
subsided or fallen into the sea.The
whole scheme of providing a new road had, therefore, to be considered, and the
construction of one on the land side of Napps Hill, some distance from the cliff
face, was decided upon.The road which
is 1,000yards in length
has been made available for traffic at the earliest possible moment owing to
the narrowness of the only alternative route through BerrynarborVillage,
and it is expected to be finished by Easter.
It has taken about twelve months to
construct, and the work has been admirably carried out under the direction of
Mr. R.M.Stone, CountySurveyor for the Northern
Division, and the personal supervision of Mr. A.J. Meakins, a
member of the CountySurveyor's Staff.Direct labour has been employed, and the
stone used has been obtained from an adjacent quarry.The cost of the work, when completed, will be
just over £5,000.The gathering at the
opening ceremony included Mr. W.P. Hiern, J.P., C.A., representing the Devon
County Council, Mr. R.M. Stone, Messrs. J. Woodward, J. Kelly, F.W. Birmingham,
H. Vemall and Miss
Hammond [members of the Ilfracombe Urban District Council], with their
Surveyor, Mr. O.M. Prouse, Messrs. A.W. Gaydon, C.C., and Yeo [Surveyor],
Lynton Urban Council, Mr. H. lsaac, Combe Martin's representative on Bamstaple
Rural District Council, Messrs. A.J. Meakins, E.J. Rowe, S.Webber and A. Ford, members of the CountySurveyor's
Staff, and others.
Mrs. Penn-Curzon gracefully served a
beflagged ribbon extending across the Combe Martin end of the road, remarking
"I have great pleasure in declaring this road open."
Mr. Hiern said it was generally conceded
that the new road was a local improvement.Its construction had been a very considerable expense, which in olden
days would have fallen on the Parish of Berrynarbor, but in these more
enlightened days the expense was borne by the County - a back more capable of
bearing such a burden than any one parish in the locality.Referring to the fact that in these times it
was more difficult to get a contract for work to be done, and if such could be
obtained, they were subject to all kinds of alterations which might occur.He complimented the Surveyor [Mr. Stone] on
the excellent arrangements by which the work had been done.He remarked that they were very much
indebted to the owners of the Watermouth Estate for the way in which they had
met the Devon County Council in the provision of land for the diversion.He expressed his personal thanks to Mrs.
Penn-Curzon for her services in opening the road which he thought would be a
permanent local improvement. [Applause]."
How history can repeat itself!Early in 1991, the A399 showed stress marks,
due to the weakness of the cliff, to appear on the road just below the entrance
to Greenleas, Berrynarbor.For safety
reasons, the DCCinstalled traffic
lights and traffic was only allowed to use the landward side of the road.On the 10th April 1991, the Planning and
Transportation Committee of Devon County Council reviewed as an emergency item,
to divert the road from Windy Ridge via the rear of Little Firs, On a Hill
Garage and then behind the succeeding properties before rejoining the main road
to Ilfracombe.It was estimated this would
cost in the region of £650,000.Assurance was given that the work would be completed in the shortest
possible time, although a start could not be made before September with
completion hopefully by the end of March 1992.
My grateful thanks to Daphne Challacombe
of Combe Martin for her help with this article.