Edition 119 - April 2009
The last couple of months have been both busy and varied here in the Village. Today the sun is shining and it is really spring-like, with daffodils 'fluttering and dancing in the breeze'. Yet a few weeks ago in February we had the heaviest snowfall for many years.
The temporary loss of the tenor bell at St. Peter's began a series of first-class events bringing villagers together to raise the required funds for its restoration. Now accomplished, the bells are ringing once again
I hope that in spite of the 'credit crunch' you have not given all your money away and will be able to support the Show during the week-end of 18th and 19th April to refill the Newsletter coffers. Details appear later.
February was 'F' for finance time and I must thank everyone, especially the postal readers, for their generosity when renewing subscriptions. The many kind comments make the work involved in producing the Newsletter so worth while.
Unfortunately, it has also been a sad time, with the loss of Jack, the two Brians and David, Debbie's father and 'Matron' Betty Dudley-Ward.
The good news, however, is that Gary is home again.
Don't forget that the Annual Parish Council Meeting will be held on Tuesday, 14th April. It will begin at 7.00 p.m. in the Penn Curzon Room when the postponed presentation from Digital UK, regarding the switchover in July, will precede the meeting.
Our printer Len and his wife are off on holiday at the beginning of June, which means that the printing for the June issue will need to be with him earlier than normal. So please make a note that articles and items for inclusion will need to be at the Post Office or Chicane by MONDAY, 11TH MAY at the VERY latest.
... talking of articles and items, thank you to everyone who has contributed to this issue in any way.
Judie - Ed
BERRYNARBOR LADIES' GROUP
Unfortunately, due to the snow and icy weather, the February Meeting had to be cancelled. Hopefully Mr. Bernard Hill, the fox man, will be able to come to talk to us at a later date.
Twenty members were present at the March Meeting, when birthday cards were given to Janet Gibbins, Doreen Prater and Betty Richards, and Marion Carter won the raffle.
Janet Gammon has arranged a river trip on the Exe on 12th May at with time beforehand for members to have lunch. The cost of the river trip is £4.50 each - the coach fare to be announced when numbers are ascertained.
The Chairman, Janet Gibbins, welcomed the speaker, Roger Groos, who spoke to us about healthy eating.
The total daily calories required by females is 2,000 - only 1600 if you are less active. Carbohydrates produce energy for the body, especially the brain and nervous system, but they pass through the stomach fairly quickly and are digested in the intestines, which leaves the individual feeling hungry after a short time, whereas proteins [meat, poultry, milk, eggs and cheese] stay in the stomach to be digested, so are more satisfying. An enzyme called amylase helps break down carbohydrates into glucose [blood sugar], which is used for energy by the body.
To increase healthy nutrients, eat more fruit and vegetables, rice, bread and cereals, beans, lentils and dried peas. Dark leafy green vegetables are a vital part of a healthy diet as they are packed with nutrients such as calcium, magnesium, iron, potassium, zinc and vitamins A, C, E and K.
Fats are another vital part of a healthy diet but it is the type of fat that matters. Foods such as salmon, herring, mackerel, anchovies and sardines are rich in Omega 3 which supports brain and body functions. It is best to cook with olive oil or butter and put sunflower and rape seed oil on salads. Drink plenty of water and avoid sugary drinks as they are an easy way to pack calories and chemicals into your diet.
As you can imagine, during Mr. Groos' talk members asked numerous questions about their eating habits! Doreen Prater thanked him for all this interesting information.
The Meeting ended with the usual tea and coffee and biscuits and purchases from the sales table.
Tony Wright will be coming on 7th April to talk about the Life of Bees and on the 5th May, Bernice Putt will be speaking about the RNLI. All Meetings are in the Manor Hall at All are welcome.
Lead Thou me on! The night is dark
And I am far from home; lead Thou me on!
Keep Thou my feet; I do not ask to see
The distant scene; one step enough for me.
I was not ever thus, nor prayed that Thou
Shouldst lead me on; I loved to choose
And see my path; but now lead Thou me on!
I loved the garish day, and , spite of fears,
Pride ruled my will. Remember not past years!
So long Thy power hath blest me, sure it still
Will lead me on. O'er moor and fen,
O'er crag and torrent, till the night is gone,
And with the morn those angel faces smile,
While I have loved long since and lost awhile!
John Henry Newman [1801-1890]
BRIAN WRIGHT [1925-2009]
As reported in the February issue, we were all saddened at the sudden death of Brian. St. Peter's Church was overflowing with family, friends, neighbours and colleagues, all anxious to say farewell to a 'true gentleman' [and our Crossword Puzzler]. Our thoughts and prayers continue to be with Sue and the family.
* * *
in Basingstoke, Brian spent his early years in the
starting at teacher training college, Brian had a brief period at the
Prudential Insurance. Most of his
teaching career was spent in
started playing golf at
The family and I should like to thank everyone for the numerous cards, 'phone calls and support during this sad time. The collection following the funeral was overwhelming and we were able to donate £500 to St. Peter's Bell Fund and £500 to the Salvation Army.
Jack, of Goosewell, sadly passed away on Tuesday, 25th January.
A much loved and loving husband, brother, father and grandfather he will be sorely missed by his wife Joyce, his sister June and brother-in-law Bill and his children Karen and Steve and the grandchildren.
Jack was a keen walker, a member of the Globe skittles team, the 'Seasiders' and a supporter of the Berry Broadcasting Company, taking part in the early shows at The Globe.
Our thoughts are with all the family at this time of sorrow.
DAVID BOWES [April 1939 - February 2009]
was born and brought up in the
With the general slowdown within the industry in the 1970's, David changed jobs and worked for the next 17 years as a computer consultant and lecturer in London, after which he worked as a freelance computer consultant, travelling all over the world to such places as Finland and Saudi Arabia.
and Carol met by chance through friends and their relationship developed. They married in 1992 and for many years
lived in Highworth, near
moving and living in
soon became involved within the local community, videoing events such as the
annual BBC Show. He also joined and
became Chairman of the Tarka Radio at the
On the Friday before he died, David attended the hospital radio where he did his show.
Lisa loved David dearly as a father, he was always kind and gentle. He was the love of Carol's life for thirty years and both Carol and Lisa feel privileged to have known him.
We, too, in the village feel privileged to have known him and our thoughts are with Carol and Lisa at this time of sadness.
DERRICK COOK [1933-2009]
Readers will be very sorry to learn that Derrick, Debbie's father, died suddenly in February. We send her, and her brother Steve and his family, our heartfelt sympathy at this time of sorrow and thank her for, even under such sad circumstances, once again delighting us with a cover and illustration for our Newsletter.
was born and brought up in
In 1989, he and his late wife Margaret, moved with Debbie and assorted family pets, to Ellis Cottage, Pitt Hill, and it was during their three years here in the village that both her parents encouraged and supported Debbie with her involvement with the Newsletter. In 1992, they moved to Heddon Mill, near Braunton.
Derrick's pride and joy was his 1/3rd scale Showman's Steam Traction engine that he built and which he took, with the family, to many shows, including the Devon County Show and the North Devon Show.
A modest man of many skills, the reading at his funeral of writing by Charles Darwin was so fitting:
Whenever I have found that I have blundered or that my work has been imperfect, and when I have been contemptuously criticised and even when I have been over praised, so that I have felt mortified, it has been my greatest comfort to say hundreds of times to myself that 'I have worked as hard and as well as I could, and no many can do more than this.'
BETTY DUDLEY -WARD
It was with sadness that we learnt that Betty passed away peacefully on the 24th February at The Old Rectory Residential Home in Longhope, Gloucestershire, and our condolences are sent to her niece Lucille.
Known affectionately in the village as 'Matron', due to the fact that for many years she had been in charge of South Lodge, now the Susan Day residential home in Ilfracombe, Betty was in her late 90's. She left the village in the summer of 2005 to move nearer her niece and family.
On leaving, Betty wrote: . . . "I was in charge of the Susan Day Home in Ilfracombe - a resident post - so on my retirement I had to make a home somewhere. As I had friends in the village and there was a bungalow [Halldene, now Croeso] available, I decided to come to Berrynarbor.
I have spent many happy years here and I have made many friends. As I have become old - 92 now - I have appreciated these friends very much. Everyone has been so kind and helpful to me and I am very sorry to be leaving the village but feel it is right to go near my family at this time.
Berrynarbor is a lovely village to live in and look at - Goodbye to you all."
And we sadly say 'goodbye' to you, Betty.
The whole village learnt with great sadness that after his long, courageous and always cheerful battle, Brian succumbed and passed away at the North Devon Hospice on the 14th March.
A loving and loved husband, father and grandfather, he will be missed so much not only by his family, but by all villagers who had the privilege to know him.
Our thoughts have been with him and Di, and continue to be with Di, Geoff and Sharon and all the family.
ST. PETER'S CHURCH
Special Services during April and May will be as follows:
5th April Palm Sunday, Songs of Praise with distribution of Palm Crosses
10th April Good Friday, to A quiet hour for reflection with hymns & prayers
12th April Easter Day, Family Communion [and will there be Easter Eggs for the children?].
The church will be decorated late Friday afternoon and on Saturday. Please let Sue know if you would like to give flowers or make a donation towards the cost. Her 'phone number is 883893.
Thursday, 21st May is Ascension Day followed by Whitsunday [or Pentecost] on 31st May, which is the Sunday after the May Bank Holiday week-end. The service will be at as usual. Please look out for posters nearer the time.
Christian Aid Week will be 10th to 16th May, and once again envelopes will be distributed and collected around the main village.
Friendship Lunches at The Globe will be on Wednesdays 29th April and 27th May. On behalf of everyone, I should like to take this opportunity to thank the staff at The Globe for the delicious Christmas Lunch prepared for us - we finally managed to arrange it at the end of February!
of the Tenor
The tenor bell was reinstalled on Monday, 9th March and the other bells were checked at the same time. Those venturing outside on the evening of Thursday, 12th, were overjoyed to hear a practice peal ringing out over the village. There was quite a gathering in church that night with our own ringers joined by others from Combe Martin and a photographer from the Journal.
The response to the appeal for the restoration of the bell has been overwhelming. Thanks to all your very generous donations and support of the special events held, there will be enough money in the bank to cover the invoice when it arrives. The Curry and Quiz Night was a runaway success and we cannot thank Jean and Peter enough for their magnificent effort. The Folk Evenings arranged by Tony Summers were thoroughly enjoyed by everyone and together raised £656. Our thanks to Tony and Pip and everyone who gave so freely of their time and talents. Over the past few weeks there has been a prize hamper in the Community Shop provided by Bill Huxtable. The draw, which took place on Saturday, 14th March, was won by Gilly Loosemore and raised a further £122 . The total sum raised was increased by an incredible amount following the Coffee Morning on the 21st March, organised by Elaine Filer. And there are still a few more planned events in the pipeline, dates yet to be confirmed.
All the money raised has been placed in a Bell Fund and any sum remaining will be kept there for future maintenance of the bells. Since leaflets 'Help Us to Save Our Bell' were distributed all round the village, there will be no Gift Day in June this year.
LETTER FROM THE RECTOR
A great big "THANK YOU" to everyone in the village who responded so magnificently to our appeal for help with the bells.
It certainly proved an 'opportunity' [see my last letter] for the whole community to come together and enjoy not only curry but some wonderful entertainment in the Manor Hall and the Globe - despite, on occasions, the weather.
Thank you so much to those of you who organised and took part in the activities. As I write this, the carpenters are due to start work on the bells and you have raised the money for that. I am sure it must be some sort of record for so much money to be raised in such a short time. I think it reflects the affection in which the bells and the bell-ringers of Berrynarbor are held and I take this opportunity to thank Michael and his intrepid band of ringers for all their hard work over the years. I think our ringers are great.
Oh, just in case you are wondering, I do not intend to have a Gift Day this year. Your love and support for the Church has been generously demonstrated already. Once again, THANK YOU VERY MUCH.
With all good wishes, Your Friend and Rector,
CURRY AND QUIZ NIGHT
We are sure that, by now, you will all have heard that the Curry and Quiz Night on 6th February generated a profit of £840 for the bell restoration fund.
We were very moved by the response and offers of help, which evolved from the idea.
We had a very stressful week because of the snowy weather and Michael and Bett were left on the door not knowing exactly how many people were going to make it through the snow and turn up. In the event we had advanced booking numbers of around 100, but although the snow kept a few 'far flung' quizzers away, several villagers came at the last minute as their other commitments had been cancelled. The result was an attendance of 97, which was fantastic!
We should like to take this opportunity to once again thank everyone for their support and generous donations towards the restoration of the tenor bell.
It was a great result from a great night - thanks. Jean and Peter
FOLK MUSIC NIGHT and SING-A-LONG AT THE GLOBE
I should like to say a very big thank you to all those who supported the two fund raising events that I organised in support of the Bell Fund. Without you they would not have worked and we would not have raised so much for the fund.
In particular, however, I should like to thank Tom and Barbara Brown for volunteering their services and putting on their show, A West Country Night Out, free of charge for us. Considering that this is their source of income and they live in Combe Martin, not Berrynarbor, I thought this was a wonderful gesture, and what a wonderful show they put on!
I must also thank my musician friends, John Stevens, Paul Jaggers and Pam & Al Cruse for coming along to the Globe and giving me some musical backing for the Folk Singing Night and assisting with the singing, and the Globe for providing the venue and a very generous contribution.
but not least, I am most grateful to Tony and Norma, Tim and Bobby for taking
the time and trouble to practice a couple of songs ready for the 'sing' and
everyone who gave so generously. I
thought if we made £150 or so from the "Sing-a-Long" we'd be doing well, but
the notes kept being tossed into the bucket and we ended up with a great
£250! Absolutely fantastic!
It just shows what we can do when we all pull together. [Sorry about the
pun!] Once again, thank you everyone. Tony S.
TENOR BELL COFFEE MORNING
The Coffee Morning held on the 21st March for the Tenor Bell Fund raised an amazing £500!
A warm and sincere thank you to all those who worked so hard to make the event such an awesome success. It is impossible to name everyone involved, but may all of you know that this is to say how much we appreciate your support.
I should also like to say how grateful we are for your support, efforts, hard work, guidance and generosity, not forgetting a huge thank you to everyone who has come along and supported all our fund raising events. We have been astounded and overwhelmed!
Behind the scenes we have enjoyed working together and shared much laughter. The fact that the Tenor Bell is now repaired and ringing is all thanks to you! And, there are more events to come, so watch for the posters. Your kindness and giving in whatever form this has been has been very much appreciated.
MANOR HALL NEWS
We have had a busy time at the Manor Hall over the past weeks, with the completion of the decorating of the main hall and putting back all the items which are displayed. A major water leak occurred and the repair of this has cost over £1800, but this should ensure it does not occur again for many years to come!
We applied for a grant of £400 for new curtains and rails and I believe we will have the cheque from the North Devon District Council shortly.
The Hall has been busy with events for all sorts of fund raising activities, and we thank the people who have used the hall, as it maintains our efforts to collect enough money to keep it going, we are after all a charity that needs funds too!
I should like to thank all the people who have supported me as Chairman over the past 41/2 years and hope that the new Chairman will have similar support.
Bob Hobson - Chairman
N.B. Look out for Hallmark Awards as the Committee works towards the first stage of this award.
wartime evacuee friends, Dave from Goosewell and Tom from
"All we'd need are a couple of five-gallon drums," Dave pondered, "And a couple of long pieces of wood."
"You strap the drums each end and have a few bits of wood to sit on in the middle," Tom added, scratching his head and stroking his chin, while wondering where they could get the drums. "I know!" he started, "Napps Wood dump, on the old coast road."
"Come on, let's go now!" Dave replied, and off they went.
They soon arrived at the dump where they were able to find two suitable oil drums, complete with stoppers. They then took them up to the lime kiln, hid them by covering them up with leaves, ready for collecting later.
Losing no time, they soon found some drift wood on the beach and knocked up what they thought to be their one-person craft to paddle about on.
When next the boys communicated with semaphore across the Valley, they arranged to carry the raft up to the kiln, collect the drums and take it all down to Broadsands.
After precariously carrying their raft down the many steps to the beach, they found the tide to be high, but going out.
"You go first." Dave said to Tom.
"OK, I'll give it a try", was the reply, and they placed the raft at the water's edge, but Tom suddenly noticed that he had no paddle. "That bit of wood over there will do," he thought, and picked it up. Soon he was sitting on the raft and pointing out to sea.
Illustratations by: Paul Swailes
Wading ashore he called to Dave that it wasn't going to work. "Hey, it's drifting out, we'll lose it if we're not careful!"
Tom looked a bit glum, "Then we'll have to lose it, 'cos I'm wet enough already."
As the raft drifted out to sea, they decided to abandon ship.
"Got any money?" enquired Tom.
"Yeh, a bit," was the reply.
"Then let's go to Combe Martin and get some fish and chips."
As they walked to Combe Martin Tom's clothes began to dry out and they agreed that their raft project had been both stupid and dangerous and they wouldn't try it again.
As they approached the shop, a lovely smell of fish and chips wafted towards them. Two pieces of rock eel were ordered, together with a penny worth of chips.
Thoroughly enjoying eating their food from the newspaper wrapping, they made their way back to a seat in the car park.
"We've just about enough money to get home by bus," said Tom.
"Well, to Berrynarbor Corner, anyway," chipped in Dave.
They got the bus and parted at the Corner to make their own ways back. As each arrived home, and almost in synchronisation, they enquired, "What's to eat?"
"I'm more interested in why you've a piece of seaweed sticking out of your pocket?" was Tom's mother's comment.
Tony Beauclerk -
WEATHER OR NOT
cold snap continued into 2009 and it was the coldest start to the year for 20
years. On the night of the 6th January,
temperatures as low as -12 Deg C were recorded in parts of
Tanton, the late amateur weather forecaster, forecast
the worst February weather for many years and on the 1st the temperature
started to fall and at 22.38 hours we had a wind chill of -15 Deg C. The next day we had a light dusting of snow,
although other parts of
[4 5/16"] in our garden. This was the deepest snow we can remember in Berrynarbor since the early 1980's. There were some more snow showers over the next few days but nothing really settled here.
We were away from the middle of February to the 4th March, but Bill, Jill and Judie kept some details for us and the last fortnight of February was milder and reasonably dry. The total rainfall for the period up to the 4th March was 75mm [3"], but some of this fell in March, which made February a fairly dry month. It was also a dull month with 23.28 hours of sunshine, down on the average and nearly half the amount we had last year.
Simon and Sue
RURAL REFLECTIONS - 39
The daffodils beside the boating lake sway in a gentle, spring breeze, the bright sunshine enhancing their yellow trumpeted faces. In turn, they light up the faces of passers by, yet their cheerful presence fails to uplift me. Instead, my mood is more akin to the depressing layer of drab-coloured silt that suffocates the lake's bed; a surface recently exposed when the water was emptied.
mirrors the emptiness I feel inside; for our dear, black
Perhaps, when the pain of his loss eases, the void will be filled by the memories of happiness and laughter, not to mention the loyalty and unconditional love, that our "Mr. B" gave us; and at least I have the countryside that surrounds me to evoke these special memories.
Take the local green, something that is synonymous with a rural village. It will remind me of Mr B's "first outing". Finally allowed out after all of his inoculations, he ran wild on our nearby green. Nose to the ground, he ran and he ran, his tail excitedly wagging with every new scent of discovery. Everything then suddenly came to a halt for a quick stoop and a wee-wee, then he was off again! After a few minutes, flop. Lying on his stomach, he panted heavily whilst his tail still wagged as his eyes took in the new world surrounding him.
There was a corner shop on one side of the green; how Bourton loved to carry the wallet on his way home. Years later, when he began to make a habit of sniffing every blade of grass in order to drag out the last few yards of a walk, we realised that by popping his lead into his mouth he would then instinctively trot home. Somehow though, I think he knew the trick we were trying to play on him.
rabbits in a field will always cause me to smile. Bourton loved to
chase them. As a young dog, taken for a
walk at dusk, he would spy in the distance a host of rabbits. Having been told to 'sit', he would then
wait for his command. On hearing
"Go on, then!" he would be like a bullet out of a shotgun. He never reached them in time, but he loved
the chase. Only once did he catch a
rabbit, in the field above
sight or sound of a pheasant will also remind me of an occasion when, running
through a meadow of long grass, he unexpectedly flushed one out. I don't know who was more shocked, me or the
pheasant - or who made
the loudest shriek! A field of long
grass will also remind me of our first motorcaravan
holiday with him. I can picture him
now, aged about three months, running about the field with his little body and
gangly legs peering out above the long grass with every stride he took in order
to see where he was going. The site was
a mile from
Bourton, however, was never happier than in a wood. His gundog instinct made him investigate any little track or trail that led off a winding path. Walks in the woods are going to seem strange for a little while.
That first climb to Cairn Top will
also be difficult. He loved to either
mooch about the summit, sniffing the trails of other recent canine visitors or
just sit with his head slightly raised whilst his nostrils flared and picked up
any scent on the wind. Other walks will
also be hard. Mr B loved the walk
Most of all, the sight and sound of country streams will invoke the strongest memories. Bourton would spend all day if he could gathering up stones from a stream bed, completely submerging his face if need be, in his determination to bring us his chosen item; and on a summer's day, it was Bourton who had the sense to lie down in the stream to cool off whilst watching his younger brother, Gifford, getting all hot and bothered.
When the daffodils come into flower next spring, I am sure they will once more bring me happiness.
Even now, they are to some degree
giving me comfort, reminding me of the last walk
Illustrated by: Josh Age 9
We had driven to Morewenstowe, intent on walking to Hawker's Hut. It was obvious that he would not make it. Instead, we took him for a little walk around the nearby churchyard. Situated on a sloping hillside, we took a slow walk down its zigzag path, reading inscriptions whilst waiting for him to catch us up. I can still see him now as we climbed back up, his two back legs kicking together as he ascended through the daffodils, nose to the ground.
So, farewell Bourton, we'll miss you terribly, but thank you for all the happiness you gave us during your fourteen-and-a-half years. Run freely through those woods and fields up above.
may remember that Steve has been writing a book about the Cairn in
Ilfracombe. 'A Doorstep Discovery - Twelve Months on the Cairn in Ilfracombe' is to be launched at
So many readers will empathise with Steve on the loss of a much-loved pet, we wish him well. We also wish him much success with his book.
COMBE MARTIN WALK & TALK
Take the Boredom out of Exercise
Come along to the Combe Martin Walk and Talk Launch Day, Learn more!
The launch of this new health initiative which can benefit anyone and everyone, at any level of fitness [and it's free too!] will be on
at The Royal Marine Function Room
Free Light Refreshments at
Avoid a gym membership, stay fit for free and have a good time. Exercise in nature brings health, happiness and friendships. Come and listen to the birds and the bees, walk your way through the credit crunch.
Tired of feeling lonely, isolated, depressed, unloved or unwanted? Take steps now to find the real, vibrant you!
If you want to improve your physical health, your bone density and the way you feel, think and look - then Walk and Talk is for you.
"This is a wonderful opportunity to improve the fitness and well-being of our community and to make new friendships while exploring our magnificent countryside", so says Julia Clark, Chair of Combe Martin Parish Council.
Chris and Wendy are delighted to announce the arrival of their first grandchild - a granddaughter. Holly Yvonne Jenner, a daughter for Tim and Jackie, was born on the 6th February, weighing 6lbs 10oz.
Our congratulations to the proud grandparents and parents, and a warm welcome to the little one.
A MESSAGE FROM RON
I should like to use the Newsletter to send my best wishes to all friends and neighbours in the village.
I moved to Lee Lodge on Friday, 13th June, last year, and it was 'lucky' Friday 13th' for me. It was completely the right thing to do after a six-week stay in hospital following a bad fall - first at the North Devon District Hospital and then at The Tyrell in Ilfracombe.
I have settled in nicely and have absolutely NO complaints - everyone is very kind and supportive. In fact, no sooner had I arrived than they helped put on a special birthday tea on my 92nd birthday! Perhaps I shall be able to have another this July!
I had another fall after Christmas but am now feeling much better. Thank you for all my cards. A big thank you to all the 'Carers' here and to everyone who calls in to see me - I enjoy seeing you all. Best wishes,
Maureen and Pat
would like to thank everyone who came to their Coffee Morning at Fuchsia Cottage, and thank you to all those who kindly donated cakes, raffle prizes and helped on the day. We raised a grand total of £200 for the Village Shop & Berry in Bloom
MOVERS AND SHAKERS NO. 20
Chairman, John Fowler Holiday Parks
November 1928 -
difficult to catch Mr. Fowler at home.
At 81, when most men are cultivating their gardens, then taking an
afternoon nap, John is still working a 40-hour week. As Chairman of John Fowler
But all this is far removed from the very humble beginnings . . .
In 1952, after serving in the Korean War, John left the Navy, with just £300 in savings. Although quite a sum 57 years ago, it was nowhere near enough to buy a business, such as a hotel or farm. Having given it some thought, he bought a pre-war caravan and renovated it. He then had to find a site for it. He had no 'phone, so went into a public 'phone box with a pile of coins and a list of possible contacts and made a whole host of calls.
farmer offered him a field with a gate.
In it stood a 'sentry box' [the loo] and a standpipe for water
supply. The caravan had gas lighting
and cooking and so all was ready for the season - except for visitors. John put an ad. in
After a successful first season, the next year he bought three more caravans, which again he renovated. Now with 4 caravans, he felt he had really 'made it'! Following on from this, he bought chalets and let them - always on other people's land. Some of these were in Westward Ho! and by the early 'sixties he had developed his first holiday park in that resort. So for more than 50 years, his vast and growing empire has consistently delivered great holidays, which are still based on the same high standards that have been operating for decades. The Parks are all in seaside locations, so the great beaches and our stunning countryside are never far away.
have to go no further than Combe Martin to see two of them. Firstly there is
So what is the secret of his success? Well, all the Parks have a price-watch policy - particularly important for families during the credit crunch. This means that prices are kept reasonable for accommodation, meals and drinks and there are no hidden extras on the booking price, so all fuel, bed linen and facilities are included. Children have meals at half price and most of the Parks have superb facilities such as cabaret and live music, a heated swimming pool and a 'Foxy Club' to keep the children entertained.
All these extras show how much organising needs to take place. It's no wonder that there is a staff of 1200 [including seasonal ones] to make it all happen. And doesn't it astonish that all this came about from one pre-war caravan?
Congratulations, Mr. John Fowler!
PP of DC
A LOVER AND HIS LASS
From 'As You Like It' - William Shakespeare
With a hey, and a ho, and a hey nonino,
That o'er the green cornfield did pass
In the spring time, the only pretty ring time,
When birds do sing hey ding a ding ding
Sweet lovers love the spring.
Between the acres of the rye,
With a hey, and a ho, and a hey nonino,
These pretty country folk would lie,
In the spring time, etc.
This caro they began that hour
With a hey, and a ho, and a hey nonino,
How that a life was but a flower
In spring time, etc.
And therefore take the present time
With a hey, and a ho, and a hey nonino
For love is crowned with the prime
In spring time, etc.
As recently reported, after several years of analysis, x-rays and
infrared imaging, experts believe this to be the only surviving portrait of
William Shakespeare painted during his lifetime. It is thought to have been painted in 1610
when he was about 46. The portrait will
go on display at The Shakespeare Birthplace Trust in
LOCAL WALKS - 113
footsteps of Elinor
Sunday at Hartland Abbey drew the crowds.
Blackpool Mill Cottage was used as a location in the recent BBC production of 'Sense and Sensibility', and this has added to the popularity of the Snowdrop Sundays when the Abbey opens its grounds to the public.
Elinor and Marianne, the heroines of Jane Austen's novel, move to the modest cottage with their widowed mother and younger sister following the death of their father; their former home and its large estate having been inherited by their half brother.
Elinor represents the cautious good 'sense' of the title and her sensitive and more impetuous sister Marianne - the 'sensibility'.
Since watching the television dramatisation I had been curious to see the cottage and its rocky cove. As we set off, a green woodpecker passed in front of the Abbey with rapid undulating flight and a blur of yellow and olive green.
A few wild daffodils were scattered about the banks; there were patches of strongly scented winter heliotrope and growing on a half buried twig, two perfectly round Scarlet Elf Cups - white on the outside and with a smooth, deep red lining. The fungus makes its appearance between January and May.
a mile and a quarter, we reached Blackpool Mill and it was in a lovely and
romantic setting with a rugged coastal hill rising behind it and the wild
the book Jane Austen transports the family to the less remote Barton Cottage
["small, comfortable and compact"], four miles north of
A whole cast of characters awaited us. The head of a Grey Seal emerged for air. A Peregrine Falcon sped past. A flotilla of Lesser Black Backed Gulls bobbed about among the rocks and further out could be seen the stately form of a Great Northern Diver.
climbed the steep cliff path to obtain a view of the twin waterfalls spilling
On the way back we made a detour to the pretty gazebo on its elevated viewpoint; saw the camellias in the bog garden and visited the walled garden, with its globe artichoke plans and potting sheds and conservatory with limed growing abundantly in it. The sheltered garden was lively with feeding birds.
is remarkable that even with so many visitors that day, the gardens and woods
and the beach at Blackpool Mill all maintained an atmosphere of peace in this
far north-western corner of
BANKS WERE IN TROUBLE 200 YEARS AGO ---
600 private banks in
banks in the
So, you see, what is happening now within the banking industry happened a long time ago. But were any lessons learned?
DID YOU KNOW . . . . ?
almost side by side on
the 18th Century, coaches would stop off there on their way from
Hansom invented the Hansom Cab at his workshop in
Don't Tread on Me
and Brian [Davies] are very happy to announce the engagement of their daughter Jancy Lee to Simon Overell of
Ilfracombe. The engagement took place
Another year another litter pick. We have had our first litter pick of the year with quite a good turn out and loads of litter picked up, at least 12 large bags, which we took to the tip. The centre of the village was, as usual, pretty tidy thanks to the regular walkers who do their best to keep it so. Unfortunately the main roads were very bad as is normal for the first pick of the year. Regular picks will be made throughout the coming year.
the first meeting of the year it was agreed that we should continue to enter
also decided that the
For the last few years we have had our hanging baskets planted by Streamways Nurseries at Georgeham - they do a wonderful job! If you would like to have top quality planting in your own baskets we can take them over for you. Streamways deliver them back here in the last week of May. The guide price is: 12" basket £14.50, 14" basket £16.25, 16" basket £17.25. Again, if you are interested please 'phone me on the above number.
first fund raising event of the year was a Coffee Morning at Fuchsia
Cottage, A big thank you to Pat and
Maureen and the ladies who supplied the lovely cakes. £200.00 was raised with half going to
Meanwhile, despite the coldest winter for 20 odd years, our spring planting is springing in to flower. Tempting the first bumblebees of the year are the mini daffodils and chunky hyacinths, we hope you enjoy them.
I have tried making hot cross buns in the past with varying success. However, these are lovely little Easter muffins and easy to make.
75g/3oz unsalted butter or margarine
150ml semi-skimmed milk
50g/2oz caster sugar
2 large free-range eggs
175g/6oz plain flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 tablespoon ground mixed spice
100g/4oz luxury mixed dried fruit
sprinkle of Demerara sugar for the topping
Preheat the oven to 200 Deg C, fan180 Deg C, Gas 6. Line a 6-hole muffin tin with muffin cases.
Chop 75g/3oz of the marzipan in to small pieces, set aside and roll the remainder in to 12 strips each about 7.5cms long and set aside.
Melt the butter in a small pan over a medium heat or in the microwave. In a large bowl whisk together the milk, sugar, eggs and cooled melted butter until combined. Sift the flour, baking powder, spices and a pinch of salt on to the butter mixture. Using a large metal spoon, lightly stir together with the chopped marzipan and fruit. Do not over mix; a few lumps will not matter, if too smooth the muffins will be heavy.
Divide the mix between the 6 muffin cases. Lay two strips of marzipan across the top to make a cross and sprinkle over a little Demerara sugar. Bake in the centre of the oven for 18-20 minutes until risen and firm to the touch. Leave the muffins in the tin for 5 minutes then cool on a wire rack.
I should double up the mixture because they are yummy and nice for an Easter tea.
If you don't like marzipan, leave it out, they will still taste good.
WILDLIFE FACE TO FACE with DAVID CHAFFE
of you may recall an article in the Newsletter of February 2003 recounting how
a very young, orphaned otter was found in the
David is the author of two books - STORMFORCE, a touching and illustrated account of an otter's rescue
and struggle for survival; and FACE TO FACE with NATURE, a book which recalls memorable moments of David's life and work with wild creatures. David writes of himself: "I am passionate about, and draw inspiration from, the natural world. I want others to similarly enjoy and share nature and to understand my concerns both for its ultimate survival and for the very future of planet earth itself."
On FRIDAY, 8TH MAY, David will be at the Manor Hall, with his barn owl, to share with us some of his experiences and thoughts and genuine love of the natural world. Tickets are £2.50 for adults, £1.00 for children or a Family Ticket £6.00. Proceeds to the Church Bells Appeal.
THE GREAT BERRYNARBOR PLANT
Monday 4th May
onwards, Manor Hall, Berrynarbor
Plants and Flowers,
The Hall will be open from for those wishing to bring plants or set up stalls. If you have not yet booked your space, please contact Kath Thorndycroft  889019 or leave a message at the Shop.
News from our Community Shop and Post Office
Anita, Jackie and the Shop Committee were all very sorry to hear the sad news of Brian's death and send much sympathy to Di and family. Brian was a great support on the Committee and 'cooked the books' extremely well from the first day we started business back in October 2004. He was a true friend as well as a valued colleague. Di has spoken so highly of the help given by the North Devon Hospice that there is a collection box in Brian's name in the Shop where it will stay until mid-April.
We have, however, been lucky in that Robin Downer has agreed to be our new Treasurer - or as it was put to him "to do a bit of book-keeping"! We wish him every success - as a 'trainee cook'!
As you may know, our Shop won the Best Village Shop/Post Office Award in the 2008 Countryside Alliance Awards in the South West. Four of us went to the House of Lords for the national final on March 18th. Unfortunately we didn't win - but hang it, it was our first try! Many congratulations to Anita and Jackie - and to all those who wrote in to say what they liked about our Shop. Look out for the 2009 awards! If we make it to the finals next year, we hope that Anita and/or Jackie will be able to go - it's quite an experience.
For the summer season, from Good Friday to end of October, we are hoping to keep the Shop open throughout lunchtime. The only way we can manage it without increasing the number of volunteers or adding to the 4-hour session, is if afternoon volunteers are willing to work from to We thought of 12.30-4.30 originally, but didn't want too many 'domestics' on our hands! I hope that all afternoon volunteers have been told and agree. Please note the new hours.
On the subject of hours, we normally open on Bank Holidays for the morning only. This summer we'll be keeping open all day [usual times].
It has been - and will be - a great fund-raising few months for the Shop and other needy causes in the village and there are lots of folk to thank:
The shop benefited from "Tales of Time and Tide", a great evening of music and slides by Tom Bliss, organised by John and Fenella, which raised £200 each for the Shop and Manor Hall, and Pat and Maureen gave a scrumptious coffee morning at Fuchsia Cottage, raising £100 each for the Shop and Berrynarbor in Bloom.
Future events are in the pipeline:
Sunday April 5th: Alex Horne is presenting a Bird Watching Comedy - his publicity says 'A Twitcher with a Difference!' Tickets £7.50 - children £4, doors open 7.00 for a start, and the bar will be open. Profits will again be for our Shop and the Manor Hall.
Monday May 4th: The Great Plant
Friday May 22nd: Berrynarbor Golf Tournament - sign up to reserve your place.
Congratulations to all organisers and helpers - it's what makes this village so special!
And a note for your diary: Thursday November 12th! Tim Davis and Tim Jones will be giving their famous 'Birds of Lundy' show in the Manor Hall, profits to be shared between our Shop and The North Devon Hospice. Full details nearer the time.
Easter is not far away and the Shop has pretty cards, Easter eggs, chocolates and other gifts, so please call in and buy.
And finally, it's time for our Annual General Meeting. This will be held on Saturday 2nd May at in the Manor Hall, when we hope that as many shareholders as possible will be there.
Happy Easter from Anita, Jackie and the Committee.
PP of DC
The February presentation by Majestic Wines was not to be - they had not put it in their diary! So, having purchased the wine and written the notes for the 'Call My Wine Bluff' evening, Tony brought this forward and a superb evening was had by all. It was great to see two teams play their jokers on the last round, full of confidence, only to get it wrong and get no score at all!
The March meeting was a resounding success with Jonathan Coulthard, owner and winemaker of the Domaine
Gourdon vineyard in the Duras
He was welcomed by Tony Summers, who had made all the arrangements for his visit and who gave the vote of thanks.
Jan Tonkin will be giving, much to his surprise, the presentation at our next meeting on the 15th April. Jan believes he will be a panel member on Call My Wine Bluff - could be interesting!
The May meeting on the 20th, will be the AGM, and the presentation to follow has still to be confirmed, but it looks as if it will be given by a committee member hopefully they won't all resign at the AGM!
The meetings take place in the Manor Hall at and new members are always welcome. However, due to licensing laws, please contact Tony Summers on  883600 giving at least 24 hours' notice of your intention. Tom Bartlett - Publicity
One winter, the boys built themselves a wooden sledge. It was a beauty, about 8 feet long, and Norman [Richards] obtained the steel for the runners - the rims of old cart wheels. Four boys could ride on the sledge at one time.
One day, after a very heavy snow fall, Mr. Sid Dummett, who lived at South Lee, couldn't get his horse and cart up Ridge Hill to collect the mangolds with which to feed the stock he kept at South Lee.
So, he asked the boys if they would go up to the mangold cave [pit], which was half way up Ridge Hill, and fill some 'West of England' sacks with mangolds and bring them down on the sledge. Always up for a challenge, the boys were quick to respond.
After a hard pull up the hill, they filled the first couple of sacks and loaded them on the sledge. With a good hard shove, off they set, down the hill like a rocket! A sharp left turn at the Rectory into Jan Braggs Hill, with snow spraying from the boys' boots as they tried to slow the sledge down a little, and with a right turn into Blind Lane, the sledge flew out of the end of Blind Lane and came to a halt very close to South Lee.
The older residents of the area were aghast!
The boys returned up the hill to collect more mangolds. But, in the meantime, the delivery men from Cleaves, the baker from Combe Martin, couldn't get beyond Sandy Cove with their van to deliver the bread and cakes, and had decided to walk into the village carrying their wares in big wicker baskets to sell to their customers. At the same time, the concerned locals decided it was time to halt the boys and their sledge.
Bill Blackmore, who lived at Little Sanctuary, unfortunately had a stutter, heard the sledge and the boys coming down Ridge Hill again, and said, "I'll stop the b b b------!" and threw a shovel of hot cinders and ashes on the road. However, on went the sledge undeterred, only to scatter the poor men who had walked from Sandy Cove with the bread. Cakes and bread spilled all over the place, and the rolls rolled down Jan Braggs hill almost a fast as the sledge!
Again, the boys took the route down Blind lane but someone had shovelled up the snow at the bottom to block the exit and to try and stop them. All to no avail - the loose snow scattered everywhere and the sledge again came to rest at South Lee.
Sid got his stock fed; the boys got some extra pocket money from Sid and the locals talked about the escapade for days!
else to encounter the sledge was Les Toms.
Les lived on the corner of
Hill runs down from
Arthur Edwards, or Tiddly Edwards as he was known locally, lived on Castle Hill.
One evening he had been in to Ilfracombe to play bingo, at which he won some money, and after catching the bus back to Berrynarbor with his pockets full of his winnings, he decided to go to the pub for a drink.
There were the usual lads in the bar and, like the beer, the banter was soon flowing. One of the lads told Arthur that he'd seen a ghost up in the churchyard, but Arthur was having none of it. He said he didn't believe in ghosts, However, the lad told Arthur that if he went up into the churchyard and touched seven grave stones then he would see a ghost. Still protesting that there was no such thing, Arthur reluctantly agreed to go and touch the seven grave stones.
Off he went with the lads following but they remained at the lych gate, trying not to laugh. When Arthur got to the seventh grave, he hitched his toe and fell over, his winnings spilled out of his pocket but that was enough for Arthur, he took off out of the churchyard and up Castle Hill like a bat out of hell. He returned next day to retrieve his money!
Illustrations by: Paul Swailes
timely reminder to all newcomers to Berrynarbor: The
European Parliamentary & Country Council Elections are due to be held on
In order to be eligible to vote, your current name and address need to be entered on the Electoral Register to be used for this election. If you think you may not have registered in October, be sure to contact electoral services at the Civic Centre, Barnstaple on  388277, as soon as possible, to be included.
is good to have him home again, and
Bill and Jill would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone for their good wishes, cards and support. Bill is making a good recovery and hopes to be able to thank you all personally in the very near future.
EARLY DAYS AT 'THE FLICKS'
There was a period in my young life - I was about 8 I think - when mother, no doubt to get me from under her feet, would give me 3d [1 1/4p!] to take myself to the local 'flea pit' for the Saturday morning children's matinee.
We called them 'the flicks' because they flickered, due to an inadequate number of frames per second, leading to jerky movements by the characters. Not that it mattered to us, in fact, in the comedies it seemed to be an asset.
Anyway, there I sat with the other kids for a couple of hours, cheering the hero or booing the villain as the situation demanded. They were, of course, silent films with text on the screen, supplemented by suitable background music [Hearts and Flowers, etc.] from a pianist. They were also in black and white, being long before technicolour.
They gave us a varied programme. The feature film might be an early Western, featuring Tom Mix and his bronco, a romance with Mary Pickford and Douglas Fairbanks, or a comedy with Charlie Chaplin or Buster Keaton. We also had the Pathe News and a series called 'The March of Time', which charted the evolution of various organisations, both largely over our heads. We also had animated cartoons, often featuring Felix the Cat, a forerunner of Mickey Mouse. His signature tune, as I remember it, went:
Felix keeps on walking
Keeps on walking still.
With his hands behind him,
You will always find him.
Blow him up with dynamite
But him you cannot kill.
He'll come down in Timbuctoo
Pick himself up, say "Toodleoo
And keep on walking still.
We sang this with great gusto, to piano accompaniment. We also exercised our lungs, with the help of the 'bouncing ball'. Words and music of a popular song would appear on the screen and the ball would move along the lines to keep us in time.
Finally, there was a 'shortie' called, I think, 'The Moving Pen'. This showed the line by line, creating a pen-and-ink sketch. Just as you thought you recognised what was appearing, the artist would change tack and produce something quite different. One example I remember began as the head of a hippo, but turned in to a 'hippo-pot-o-mustard'!
I wonder if any of our older readers have similar memories?
OLD BERRYNARBOR NO. 118
This month I have chosen three photographic postcards from my collection in the hope that some of our senior Berrynarbor villagers may be able to identify one or two of the people shown!
The first, and oldest picture, shows a gathering of adults and children in the Berrynarbor Chapel taken, I believe, between 1925 and 1935. It appears to be quite an important event as apart from, presumably, the local minister on the stage, a further two ministers can be seen on the left. Note the potted palms and aspidistra on the tables and the bouquet of flowers, which I presume has just been presented by the young girl on the left of the minister's wife. I wonder if the cross on the wrapping signifies the British Red Cross and there is a nurse [matron] standing on the right?
The second has been taken in the Manor Hall and is the 'Welcome Home' Social held in 1946. Note the Victory 'V' sign above the stage and 'Long Live the King'. The Union flags, with the picture of King George VI and Queen Elizabeth, are in the centre.
The third and last picture is of a
Children's Christmas Party, again in the Manor Hall, and taken around 1946-1950
by the Ilfracombe Photographers, Lee & Sons of
Can you put names to anyone in any of the pictures? If you can, I should love to hear from you, by telephone, letter or e-mail.
Finally, can I again appeal for information or pictures of Berrydown Chapel, particularly if you ever attended a service or function there? In the meantime, my thanks to John Clark, Sheila Brain and Caroline Verney for getting in touch. If you can help, please do contact me .
Copyright Photographs Tom Bartlett Collection
NEWS FROM THE PRIMARY SCHOOL
Spring is here and the children are certainly enjoying the sunshine. It is amazing how a bit of fine weather can change the atmosphere in the playground! It is great to be able to get the children out and about again - long may it continue.
It has been an interesting winter and I think we shall all remember the snow! It was quite magical to take the children out into the garden as the first few flakes fell - for many of them it was the first snowfall they had experienced and to describe the atmosphere amongst them as electric would be an understatement! Children were vying to catch the most flakes and marvelling at their beauty [that first sprinkling really did have some rather fine examples of perfect snow, didn't it?]. It really is one of the great joys of teaching to be able to share such a wonderful experience with the children.
all the excitement and disruption of the snow, we are now gearing up for what
looks to be another busy summer. Year 6
are off to London next week-end - the trip planned for February had to be
cancelled as we were concerned that the adverse weather conditions could mean
that we wouldn't be able to get the children home. I have to say, the children weren't too
bothered by this prospect and were very disappointed when I had to cancel. However, once again Mrs. Lucas came to the
rescue and after walking into school on one of the 'closed due to snow' days to
collect the paperwork, she spent the day on the 'phone and persuaded all the
companies involved to rebook the trip at no extra cost! So the children will be off on Sunday to the
bright lights of
4 and Class 3 are preparing for residential visits to
whole host of sporting fixtures and experiences. Years 2, 3 and 4 will be taking part in a singing celebration with children from other schools in the local area. Singing is a bit of a theme in Class 3 at the moment, with the children rehearsing to take the lead in the Easter Service - at on Friday, 3rd April, to which you would all be warmly welcome - and where they will tell the story of the Selfish Giant.
In addition to the usual summer festivities, we shall also be receiving a visit from the Bishop and, with the Rev. Wyer's help, are hoping to do a mini 'Journey Through Time' presentation.
Watch the notice board for more news.
Sue Carey - Headteacher
Enjoy the delightful pictures of spring dafffodils that Josh, Mo, Johnny and Kyle have drawn. Josh's picture has been chosen to illustrate the article Rural Reflections.
Kyle Age 7
Mo Age 8
Johnny Age 9
PARISH COUNCIL REPORT
Items of particular interest discussed at the last two meetings in February and March were as follows:
Watermouth Cove: The Public Meeting/Enquiry originally scheduled for June has been postponed until the 8th and 9th September. An Inspector, appointed by the Secretary of State, will be present to hear the evidence from all parties.
Playground: A specification for the refurbishment of the new playground has finally been agreed by the Council. I have, however, applied for a grant of up to £10,000 towards the cost of it. This project will go ahead, but obviously the addition of a grant would be very beneficial to the Parish.
Claude's Garden: The new metal perimeter fencing has been commissioned and we hope will be ready for installation soon - then the rest of the works can go ahead.
David Farwig of Digital UK, who was due to give a presentation at the December meeting on the digital switchover due to take place this July, will now be joining us at the April meeting on Tuesday 14th at 7.00 p.m. Please remember that this will also be the Annual Parish Meeting. It should be a busy but interesting one, so please do attend if you can.
Sue Sussex - Chairman
BED IN SUMMER
Robert Louis Stevenson [1850-1894]
And dress by yellow candle-light.
In summer, quite the other way,
I have to go to bed by day.
I have to go to bed and see
The birds still hopping on the tree,
Or hear the grown-up people's feet
Still going past me in the street.
And does it not seem hard to you,
When all the sky is clear and blue,
And I should like so much to play,
To have to go to bed by day?
Illustrated by: Debbie Cook
With April, the
jewel of the Garden is opening its large, deep pinkish-red flowers. Situated in front of the house, it is now some 30
ft in height. Named 'Magnolia Marwood
Spring', it is a seedling raised from a plant growing at
We shall be exhibiting Rhododendron and Camellia at the RHS Rosemoor Show during the week-end of 25th/26th April, where we shall have a variety of unusual plants for sale in the Plant Heritage Group area outside.
There will be delicious goodies in the Garden Tea Room during the Easter week-end and 'Bangers & Mash' to celebrate St. George's Day on 23rd April., and there is always a stock of unusual plants for sale in the Plant Centre.