Edition 145 - August 2013
It is incredible how quickly two months go by, it only seems a very short time between the publication of one issue of the Newsletter before it is time to start on the next! Incredibly, too, this issue is the start of its 25th year - time flies!
With the current wonderful summer weather when siesta time has been between 11 and 5 o'clock, it has in fact been quite pleasant to be indoors, in the shade and in front of the computer, with a cool breeze blowing through the office.
My sincere thanks, as always, to the contributors - some of whom are also approaching 25 years of articles or illustrations. So, another two months will quickly go by and items for the October issue will be needed - by Monday 9th September, or sooner, please.
Once again, this year as in the past, I must thank Michael and Sue Richards for their support of the Newsletter by covering the cost of the August coloured covers, but also this time for supplying the delightful photographs taken from their Touring Holiday Park, Napps.
Now, let's hope the lovely weather continues and favours the forthcoming events - the Berry Revels, the Lee Lodge Fete, the Church Fayre and the Horticultural and Craft Show. See you there!
Judie - Ed
WEATHER OR NOT
The rumours that this would be the driest May on record turned out to be false. Although we recorded only 71 mm there have been many previous years with less rain. It was a cold month with persistent cold winds for much of it. There was only one day when the thermometer topped 20 Deg C reaching a respectable 22.5 Deg C and the wind chill went down on one day to -9 Deg C.
Only 138.03 hours of sunshine were recorded which was the least amount since 2006. The strongest wind we recorded was 32 knots. Right at the end of the month the weather became more summery with sunny days but still there was a cool breeze.
The summery weather continued until about the 11th of June when it started to break down and on the 13th and 14th there were unseasonably strong to gale force winds. It remained unsettled with the longest day, and traditional start of summer, being misty, mizzly and gloomy. This was followed by a further spell of gale force winds to play havoc with the beans.
Wimbledon fortnight started promisingly but the rain soon arrived though here it was light drizzle. Glastonbury also failed to bring the usual torrential rain and the month ended with a total of only 39mm making it one of the driest Junes that we have recorded - last year we had 179mm! Temperatures were fairly disappointing with a maximum temperature of only 22.4 Deg C but there were 151.54 hours of sunshine which was about normal for the month. We were sheltered from the strongest wind so recorded a maximum gust of only 28 knots.
We have now heard that July is going to be hot and dry - we shall see.
Simon and Sue
A DEFENCE OF IVY
I was interested in Ken's article in the last Newsletter about the invasion of ivy, 'the dreaded green menace'! Whilst recommending its removal he does, nevertheless, concede its usefulness to bees. However, it isn't only bees that find ivy such a valuable asset. It is a source of food and shelter for a variety of birds and butterflies.
The autumn brood of the holly blue butterfly feeds on ivy whilst the brimstone butterfly hibernates in woodlands, deep among the ivy.
Blackbirds, thrushes and blackcaps tuck into the berries and, along with other species of birds, take refuge among its sheltering foliage.
Ken's comments about the ivy restricting the tree's ability to photosynthesise made me think. I must admit I had not considered this aspect before but as photosynthesis takes place on the leaves and the ivy growth is usually largely confined to the trunks and larger boughs of the tree, this probably does not cause a serious threat.
I once heard that in East Anglia there is a relaxed attitude towards ivy where it is not seen as a danger to trees and its benefits to wild life are recognised and welcomed. But as one moves across the country the view changes with ivy perceived as a nuisance in the West.
Whilst I am making a case for the defence where wild life and trees are concerned I had always assumed ivy could undermine buildings but recently I was surprised to read an article in which the National Trust and English Heritage claimed not only that ivy is not harmful to buildings but that it is even beneficial to them offering some sort of protection to walls from the weather. Astonishing.
ST. PETER'S CHURCH
Once again the weather was kind to us on Gift Day and our time at the lych-gate flew by with a steady stream of people coming by to hand in their envelopes and have a chat. To date, £770 has been raised and late gifts are still arriving - thank you to everyone for your continued generosity and support.
Our next event will be the Summer Fayre on Tuesday, 20th August, 6.00 p.m. onwards at the Manor Hall. There will be a barbecue and all the usual side-shows and stalls. Please get in touch with Stuart and
Sue Neale  with offers of help and as always, gifts of cakes, bottles [full!], books, good bric-a-brac, china and glass, raffle prizes, etc., will be most welcome. Most importantly, do come along and support us on the day and join in the fun.
'Playing the Field' with Beaford Arts was a big success and our thanks go to Sue Neale and her team for the much admired floral arrangements in the church, and to Stuart and the village choir for the concert in church - all too short for the appreciative audience. June 29th was also St. Peter's Day and the new flag flew proudly. The PCC were able to purchase a new flag of St. George and a Union flag with a donation from Karen at The Globe from money raised at their quiz evenings.
While we are still enjoying the summer, we are also looking ahead to the autumn and Harvest which will be celebrated on Sunday, 6th October in church with the Supper on Wednesday, 9th October - more details next time.
Friendship Lunches at The Globe will continue through the summer and will be on Wednesdays 28th August and 25th September, 12.00 noon onwards.
In support of the Beaford Arts 'Playing the Field', it was wonderful to welcome so many people to St. Peter's - beautifully decorated with flowers - to listen to a short concert given by Berrynarbor Choir. The Choir, which was reformed in 2008, comprises of singers from Berrynarbor, Parracombe, Combe Martin, Arlington Beccott and Ilfracombe, under my direction as Organist and Choirmaster.
We were delighted to include one of the Choir's particular favourites, a special arrangement of Scarborough Fair by one of our singers, Uda Goode from Parracombe.
On behalf of the Choir I should like to thank the audience for attending and, of course, the Choir themselves for all their hard work during rehearsals and on the day!
The Flower Festival on the theme of 'Sound' was much appreciated and Sue Neale would like to express her thanks to all her helpers, several from nearby villages who gave up their time and effort to provide such beautiful and imaginative floral displays.
In conclusion thanks must also be given to those who donated so generously to both events especially Berrynarbor Parish Council and Berrynarbor in Bloom.
P.S. The Choir meet in the church every Monday evening, 7.30 to 8.30 p.m. and would love to welcome anyone who enjoys singing! We should especially like to have more tenors and if you happen to be a bass, don't leave the village - we need you!!
Thanks to Stuart Neale and the Choir for the wonderful concert at St. Peter's on the 29th June. It was an inspired programme: the choice and variety of music demonstrating the Choir's range.
The first item was a real treat 'Stranger in Paradise'. A good tune. Well it would be as it was written originally by the Russian composer Borodin. It took me back to early childhood when the song was a popular hit and my father got me an extended play record of the original instrumental version from 'Prince Igor'.
Next came Mozart's 'Ave Verum Corpus'; ethereal music which is up there with the Bach St. Matthew Passion for elevating the listener to a higher plane. Beautiful and restrained.
This was followed by a sweet rendition of one of the loveliest folk songs - 'Scarborough Fair'.
Stuart gave a touching tribute to the composer John Rutter; a modest and talented man who has produced a large body of contemporary yet accessible music performed widely by amateur choirs.
As Stuart remarked, "Why hasn't this man been knighted?"
After the Rutter came that famous song from 'Les Miserables'. I must say it sounded much better with Berrynarbor Choir singing it than the usual versions!
Finally the Choir gave a spirited and theatrical treatment to the 'Ascot Gavotte' from Lerner and Lowe's 'My Fair Lady'.
May we have more concerts like this please? Encore! Encore!
A THANK YOU - MICHAEL PATTERSON
Richard Patterson and his family would like to thank everyone for their kind words and cards at this sad time.
It was nice to see all who were able to attend the funeral service and afterwards to meet in The Globe.
Michael loved the time he spent living in the village and all the friends he made while here.
The collection amounted to over £200 and this will be donated to The North Devon Hospice - thank you for your donations.
A thank you must also go to Karen at The Globe who took care of organising the refreshments and Keith Wyer who kindly took the service.
FROM THE RECTOR . . .
July is bursting out all over . . . So this is what we have been waiting for!
I think they used to call it summer but I have forgotten since I moved here three 'summers'' ago! But as I write, July is well and truly blooming. The roses are gorgeous, hydrangea a few weeks behind but promising and the fruit is looking good. Shorts and sandals beckon and we have an end to the occasional unseasonal log fire in the late evening. All worth a wait when it comes!
And what about the great victory of Andy Murray - yesterday at the time of writing! Worth a wait after a three hour marathon in baking temperatures and 77 years since Fred Perry's Wimbledon triumph?
What is it about waiting anyway? 'All good things come to those who wait' was my late father's advice. Or was it a platitude when I wanted my favourite dinner, a special outing or that present? He was trying to tell me that you cannot always have what you want. Indeed, that there is much pleasure in preparing and planning.
For Christians, waiting is built into the scheme of things. Advent and Lent bear witness to that. The coming of Christ into the world and into our lives follows a time of waiting and preparation. The Lord comes into a receptive heart that, like the lovely flowers around us now, have opened before the Son/sun. But waiting is not passive, should be active, a time filled with readiness and development. Patient preparation and often slow process is part of the deal. Ask any good cook!
Speaking of which, it would be nice to think that we could have a bar-b-cue summer for a while. I will sniff as I go round on my pastoral visits!
Best wishes, Rev Chris
FROM THE PARISH COUNCIL
At the June Meeting, we received reports of thefts from vehicles which were secured but had items on display. People are advised to remove anything from sight as it can take an offender just a few moments to break in and take items.
County Councillor Mrs Andrea Davis advised that she had been elected on to the
DCC Cabinet with responsibility for Health and Well Being, and is the Chairman
of that Committee.
District Councillor Mrs Julia Clark advised that North Devon Council were now collecting trade waste at competitive prices.
District Councillor Mrs Yvette Gubb spoke about the 'Get set for Summer' programme of activities for children during the summer holidays.
Councillor Mrs Lorna Bowden gave a report on behalf of the Manor Hall Trust.
A number of parishioners were present to make representations regarding the retrospective Planning Application in respect of change of use of land to wolf research, education and conservation centre, associated fencing/engineering works and erection of wolf enclosure at Newberry Farm. The Parish Council's response was to recommend refusal on the grounds that it is in the wrong position, the applicant has already had a retrospective application on this and another site already refused and he should have known this before the work was commenced. Strong representations have been received from residents who have to endure howling. It is in an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and a Conservation Area. Furthermore, the access to the site is not suitable.
Councillors were pleased to donate £50 towards flowers for the Flower Festival in conjunction with the Beaford Arts event 'Playing the Field'.
Please note that future meetings of the Parish Council will be held in the Parish Rooms.
Sue Squire - Clerk to the Parish Council
North Devon Council and Torridge District Council are preparing the local plan for all areas of North Devon and Torridge. As part of that process the Councils have set out guidelines for the parish of Berrynarbor. The Parish Council has been asked to liaise with the residents of the parish to seek their views on the Council's proposals as well as any suggestions they may have for the next 20 years development of the Parish.
To this end, the Parish Council held a special meeting on Wednesday 8th May at which they put forward their proposals and distributed a questionnaire to which everyone was asked to respond.
Questions covered such items as future housing and its location, employment, parking, tourism, sport and other facilities and responses were graded on a scale of 1 to 10, 1 being strongly disagree and 10 strongly agree.
One-third of households, that is 83 respondents, completed the Questionnaire and the results have been collated. A Summary of those results is available and may be viewed at the Community Shop and in the Square Bus Shelter.
Please take time to look at these results that relate to the future development of our Parish.
BERRYNARBOR WINE CIRCLE
'Wine is bottled poetry.' (R.L. Stevenson)
Typically, our May meeting began with Alex Parke, our Chairman, presiding over this season's AGM. Having delivered the formalities with his usual brevity, the Circle learned that he would be standing down from office. The Circle has benefitted from 20 years official service, but he will continue, gladly, as a member. Flowers and wine were presented to Pam and Alex in recognition of their years of support. Other committee members were re-elected unanimously, as was Tony Summers for the Chairmanship; we shall be in good hands again.
It is always a pleasure to welcome and listen to Jonathan Coulthard, a French vineyard owner. Two thousand and thirteen has been a very special year for him and his Domain Gourdon wines. Earlier this year he, and invited guests, celebrated the tenth anniversary of his vineyard near Duras in Lot-et-Garonne. Additionally, this independent wine producer can now boast, proudly, a Gold medal from Paris. He entered his Chateau Terra Rouge 2010, in the Vignerons Independents de France competition regionally. Regional winners were then submitted to the Parisian finale. His Terra is a mix of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Cabernet Franc, described as 'oak aged, mellow and smooth'. It certainly was.
We had the pleasure of tasting this along with a Sauvignon, Rose and another red, a sparkling Sauvignon and a dessert wine from two other Cotes de Duras producers. Unusually, many thought all wines were delicious apart from the sparkling wine. All grapes were hand-picked, making the noticeable difference. Members sipped whilst enjoying the pictorial story of the celebrations at his home and workplace.
Currently, holidays are at the forefront of people's minds, but when these are past and it becomes, once again, the 'Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness,' October sees the beginning of our 2013-14 Season: 8.00 p.m. Wednesday 16th October in the Manor Hall. I'm sure Jonathan will feature again, at some point, in this forthcoming programme.
Judith Adam: Secretary and Promotional Co-ordinator
TEA FOR TWO . . and . . . TWO FOR TEA
The Lord Chamberlain is commanded by Her Majesty to invite
Mrs. Mary Tucker & Mr. Peter Pell
Mr. Kenneth & Mrs. Judith Weedon
to a Garden Party at Buckingham Palace from 4 to 6 pm
on Wednesday, 22nd May 2013
on Thursday, 6th June 2013
Wednesday, 22nd May and here I am in the queue outside Buckingham Palace with Peter waiting to go into the Garden Party to which we have been invited following my award of the BEM last year.
Once the gates are opened we are admitted very quickly and cross the immaculate lawns ready for the Queen's arrival at 4.00 p.m.
The day is overcast with quite a cool breeze but comfortable enough to be outside. Hard to know where to stand but we are fortunately in having a clear view of the Queen as she pauses for several minutes along her route to speak to two chosen guests.
Later on we see Prince Philip as he makes his way to the Royal Marquee, circulating through the crowds.
The tea was delicious with a wide variety of sandwiches, savouries and cakes - hard to choose and not look greedy!
Fellow guests were a mix of ages, all openly friendly and out to enjoy the occasion. A good number were young athletes who had taken part in the Olympic Games.
What a privilege and experience, especially as I received my award in the Queen's Jubilee year and went to the Garden Party so close to the 60th anniversary of her Coronation.
Chauffeured to London by our son and daughter, we were dropped off by the Royal Mews to join the hatted and suited queue. With driving licences examined we walked across the forecourt into the quadrangle, up the famous red steps, through two rooms and out on to the terrace to join the 7,498 other guests!
A lovely, hot sunny day and iced lemon barley water was on offer as we wondered around the gardens. Two bands were playing alternatively and the Yeomen of the Guard 'stood ground' which meant they made a pathway for the Queen to walk along and at 4 o'clock the National Anthem announced the arrival of the Queen, Prince Philip, the Duke of Kent, the Wessex's and Prince and Princess Michael of Kent who came out on the terrace before joining the party.
My not being very tall, unless we were prepared to push and shove our way to the front, this glimpse was likely to be all that we saw, and it was, although we did see Prince Philip and the Duke of Kent closer. We spent some time close to Clare Balding and her partner and saw many members of the Olympics Team GB.
The Tea Tent was marvellous! We were given a white oblong plate with a recess to hold your drink - either tea, iced coffee or apple juice. Three kinds of sandwiches, vegetarian wrap, a strawberry tartlet, raspberry concoction and a little chocolate brownie with a chocolate coronet on the top! There were not enough tables and chairs for everyone so people were sitting on the grass and taking off their high heeled shoes - very informal!
6 o'clock and the national anthem played again and the royal party slipped off, not via the terrace where we had hopefully waited, but by the backdoor! Everyone then filed out and we met up with Helen and James who had had a great time cycling around the capital on Boris Bikes.
What a privilege and honour!
Do you ever think that a little bit of DIY or some little innovation might improve your home?
I bought a mahogany style five-drawer cabinet for the bedroom but unfortunately it had some rather ugly handles on it which I thought I might change for Victorian brass drop handles that would match our existing furniture.
I found a firm on the internet who promised to get them to me in two weeks. Well, two weeks went by and I gave them a call.
no," the man said, "They have to be specially made so it will be another two
They, too, passed by so I rang again.
"Sorry," the man said, "They are having trouble getting some of the parts."
I waited another two weeks and rang again.
"We are having trouble with that firm" I was told.
"Well," I replied, "Cancel the order."
The man seemed quite pleased and stated that his firm would not be dealing with them anymore.
I was then advised by a friend that there was an antique and furniture man who had a workshop in an old farm building not far away. I managed to contact him and he invited me round to see what he could do.
Straight away he got on the internet and I chose what I wanted.
"About two weeks' wait" he told me.
Two weeks went by and they sent the wrong size. He sent them back and a while later rang to say he could get the right size but slightly different handles, so I said "Go ahead."
handles arrived and I paid for them. Were they all right? No!
The threaded parts which go through the drawer front were OK but the holes in the front plates had no thread and no way could I get them to fit. On went the thinking cap again. I knew a small engineering firm and wondered if they could help. I rang them and a man thought he could make threads in the front plates and if I left them with him for a week, all would be well.
A week went by and I called at the works to collect them.
"Any problems?" I asked.
"Well," he said, "They were a very odd thread and I had to borrow a stock and die from next door."
I took the handles home, fitted them and they look fine - it only took from March to June to get the matter sorted!
Tony Beauclerk - Stowmarket
I wonder how many readers remember or are even aware that the village - through the Newsletter and money raised at events such as coffee mornings - now sponsors two Canine Partners dogs.
Following an incredible demonstration by Wendy and her canine partner, Teddy, we adopted Pebbles, a black labradoodle and then Ruby a golden Labrador. Sadly Pebbles didn't make the grade and so Ruby was joined by Polo who again was not suitable. Ruby was then joined by Amelia, a cream Labradoodle. When Ruby graduated in 2011 and became a partner to Gary who has an auto neurological condition Amelia was joined by Alfred, a black Labrador/golden retriever cross.
Amelia and Alfred, pictured above, have now passed their training with flying colours and are partnered with Maureen and Daniel and we shall continue to support them, certainly for their first year of partnership.
In their latest letters Amelia says: 'We live by the seaside, which is fabulous, and every day we go to the beach where I have a chance to run in and out of the sea off lead, which is important for my well-being. It's brilliant to be partnered with Maureen and to know that I am making a real difference to her. This couldn't have happened without your on-going support.'
Alfred says: 'Daniel says he can't imagine life without me now as I am so joyful that it makes it impossible for him to feel down, even on his more difficult days. Even our aftercare trainer who visits us regularly says we are a happy household where I play a large part in it. That's how it should be, and Daniel wouldn't have had the chance to enjoy my company without your support.'
Their letters are on the board in the Manor Hall so please do take the time to read them in full when you are next in the Hall. These incredible dogs that have mastered inconceivable tasks make such a difference to their disabled partners.
You may remember our little mermaid friend Marina who was known for her long swims and willingness to help people.
Well, our story starts when Marina was swimming off Barricane beach watching the dolphins jumping out of the water. She was fascinated at the fun they were having. Sometimes they would rapidly waggle their tails to make them look as if they were standing in the water.
Suddenly Marina felt a nudge at her side. It was a small piece of wood, not very long but with an arrow shape at one end.
At first she thought that it had just washed against her and pushed it away, but the wood came back and nudged her again and again.
"That's strange" she thought and as the wood moved away she decided to follow it. It moved faster and faster but she managed to keep up with it. She soon found that she was a long way out from Woolacombe beach and there, in an inflatable boat, was a boy who was crying. "Oh, dear," she thought, "I must get him back to the shore."
The boy looked at Marina but said nothing. She pushed and pushed and gradually the boat started to move back towards the beach.
It was a long struggle but at last she got the boat within sight of the many people who had gathered on the beach.
"There he is!" shouted a voice and several people waded out to grab the boat and the boy. His worried mother took hold of him and asked, "Where have you been? And how did you get back?"
"It was a mermaid who pushed me back," replied the boy.
"Rubbish," said someone standing nearby, "I reckon the wind must have changed direction."
Marina dived under the water and swam away happy to have saved the young boy and pleased for his family, that they were overjoyed.
Tony Beauclerk - Stowmarket
Illustration by: Debbie Cook
BERRY IN BLOOM & BEST KEPT VILLAGE
At last the sun has come out and the village is looking lovely, we hope that the judges for the Best Kept Village competition think so too! You may wonder what the judges are looking for.
An absence of litter, dog fouling, overflowing litterbins, overgrowth of verges and hedges although areas managed for wildlife are fine.
The general condition and care of houses and gardens in the village.
The condition and cleanliness of public toilets and public telephone kiosk, well maintained public buildings with clear signage and well maintained notice boards.
Public open spaces
The maintenance of village greens, playing fields, schoolyards, public seats and car parks.
The village environment
The state of footpaths, stiles, field gates, signposting and ponds and streams. The condition of churchyards, cemeteries and war memorials.
Commercial and business premises
General tidiness, cleanliness and evidence of involvement with the community.
Evidence of Initiatives in the care and enhancement of village amenities
Such as evidence of public flower planters, maintained public gardens and children's play areas.
Evidence of community spirit
Such as the community shop, village newsletter, clubs and volunteering projects.
The final judging is in July and August so keep up the good work Berrynarbor and we could win again.
Ginger and Lemongrass Drizzle Cake
This lovely moist cake is a variation on the lime and elderflower drizzle cake that I gave the recipe for a couple of years ago. The 'drizzle' comes from ginger and lemongrass cordial so it is easy to make
300g/101/2 golden caster sugar
4 free range eggs lightly beaten
100g/31/2 oz plain flour
A good pinch salt
2tsp baking powder
200g/7oz ground almonds
About 1" finely grated fresh ginger or
1 heaped teaspoon dried ground ginger
Finely grated zest of 1 lemon
2 tblsp ginger and lemongrass cordial
[For the syrup]
4 tblsp ginger and lemongrass cordial
The juice of 1 lemon
First prepare a 23cm/9" spring form or loose bottomed cake tin. Grease the tin and line with baking parchment. Turn the oven on at 170 Deg C/340 Deg F gas mark 31/2.
Beat the butter and sugar with an electric mixer until pale and fluffy. Sift the flour, salt and baking powder together (and the ground ginger if using). Gradually add the egg to the butter and sugar [if it starts to curdle add a little of the flour]. Using a large metal spoon fold in the rest of the flour, the ground almonds, the lemon zest, and grated ginger if using.
Lastly fold in the 2 tablespoons of ginger and lemongrass cordial. Spoon the mixture in to the prepared cake tin and bake for 50 minutes or until a skewer inserted in the middle comes out clean - test after 45 minutes. If the surface is getting too brown cover it with foil.
While the cake is baking prepare the syrup. Stir the sugar and lemon juice together until the sugar is half dissolved and then add the ginger and lemongrass cordial.
When baked leave the cake in the tin and while it is still hot pierce all over with a fine skewer and pour over the prepared syrup. Leave in the tin until completely cold. Run a knife around the edge of the cake to loosen before turning out and serving.
This cake is lovely just as it is, or of course, even better with a dollop of clotted cream! Whichever way just enjoy.
Once again the girls at Lee Lodge put on a splendid afternoon with wonderful refreshments to celebrate birthdays for Ron and Ursula and those who joined in the celebrations would like to thank them.
Ron, too, would like to say a big thank you to the girls at Lee Lodge for making his birthday so special, and everyone who came to see him, the friends, relations and neighbours, and for the cards and gifts - it's quite hard to find somewhere to display 64 cards! A special thank you to the children from the School who came to sing 'happy birthday'.
Ursula, who celebrated her birthday just a day later than Ron, would also like to say a big thank you to everyone involved in making her day so special.
NEWS FROM OUR COMMUNITY SHOP & POST OFFICE
Congratulations to Karen Loftus officially our new Subpostmistress from July 12, having successfully passed her interview with the Post Office.
One of the regular faces behind our counter since moving into Barton Lane with her husband Jim, Karen's previous logistics experience with the army has already been invaluable. Not shy in coming forward, she has also joined in a number of village activities including the Choir and the Horticultural Society.
We have introduced a new range of Waterhouse Marmalades, Jams and Chutneys, along with Quince Honey Farm Products. These are delicious for everyday use and great as gift ideas.
Did you know we stock a vast range of products and introduce new items regularly? So even if you just pop in for a pint of milk, take time to look around.
Debbie, our Shop Manager, has been busy negotiating the installation of a Cuisine De France Bake-Off Oven that will fill the shop with the aroma and the promise of mouth-watering breads, rolls and pastries straight from the oven. This should all be happening in the next few weeks.
Our recent fundraising events were a great success. The Plant Sale, which included Gifts and possibly the 'best raffle ever', raised approximately £1,300 [more than double last year's effort!] and with the Golf Day our finances are much boosted.
Our Alcohol licence, which needed amending to cover Wednesday afternoons, the shop originally closed in the afternoon, should be in force on the 24th July, if there are no complications!
Finally, the outside of shop has been spruced-up with a superb paint job. Now all we need to do is paint the woodwork - Any volunteers?
BIKEY'S FINAL BASH
On a beautiful sunny Saturday in June we held the last Bikey's Bash, for a number of reasons it has to be the last.
We held our first one in August 2009, just a few months after Brian died in North Devon Hospice. I mentioned to Issy that I thought I would do a cream tea, never dreaming that when Issy said "Will you let me do it?" that it would get to be such an event!
I wanted to do something to help the Hospice for all the love and care they had shown Brian, and indeed all the family.
Well, the heavens opened that day! A number of people crammed inside and some hardy souls braved the elements and huddled under umbrellas intended to shield them from the sun.
We were ready for that the next year as I purchased a gazebo. We haven't had a wet one since of course, although it has sheltered folks from the wind! Each year has been a lovely tribute to Brian - those of you who knew him will know he was always cheerful and smiling, even in the face of terminal illness, It has certainly been a labour of love from all those in the team. Thank you for all you have done, especially to those who didn't have the privilege of knowing him, it has been very special for me and the family.
My particular thanks go to Issy and Alan, it wouldn't have happened without you, your hard work and generosity. Anyone who was lucky enough to win one of Issy's hampers will know all about that! Thanks to the whole team: Marion who sold many draw tickets, Margaret who slaved away in the kitchen, Kath and Brian who served, to you all who brought prizes and a special mention of Ethel who always produced a work of art with her knitting needles, you are a wonder to us all. And of course thanks to Sharon and Chris, and Geoff and Karen who travelled long distances to be here. To neighbours who cheerfully came loaded down with chairs and tables, and to Richard who did all sorts and to you all for coming. We raised this year £1,150.
After Brian died we had the opportunity to start a Brian Hillier Living Memories Fund. Set up by the Hospice, any money given is credited to that fund for the badly needed cash so that others can benefit from all they do in that fantastic place. I have just been given the up to date figure for that fund and it stands at this time at £7,845.22p. The large part of this is of course, money raised through The Bash, what a memorial, I don't think Brian would have believed it!
My thanks to the couple who came on their 'Bike', that was special and Brian would have loved it.
WEST COUNTRY WALK - 139
Edwin and Gertrude's Idyll
It was a happy collaboration between architect Edwin Lutyens and gardener Gertrude Jekyll which created the unique garden of national importance at Hestercombe, near Taunton.
In 1909 they were invited to design a garden on a sloping ground below Hestercombe House, a mansion that has been described as a Victorian monstrosity. Lutyens was responsible for the formal structure, a series of terraces around a sunken plat and rills bounded by a long pergola. Gertrude Jekyll devised a planting scheme which softened the edges of walls and paths and incorporated typical cottage garden flowers.
We entered the garden via a flight of Lutyens' trademark circular steps, to the Rose Garden which was intended as an outdoor room for enjoying afternoon tea under the shade of an arbor with the scent of old fashioned China tea roses and the sound of rippling water.
I headed for the Grey Walk; the first area to be restored in 1974 after the garden had been neglected since the war when American troops had occupied the house. [In the 1970's Gertrude Jekyll's planting plans were rediscovered in a potting shed.] I sat on a bench to enjoy the views to the south over the Vale of Taunton to the Blackdown Hills beyond and must have become invisible because, to my delight, I was surrounded by small birds.
It felt as if a spell had been cast by the serenity of the garden; the mellow old stones giving their stored warmth and shelter. A blackbird sang. Goldfinches landed on the santolina beside me. Pied wagtails flitted at my feet and martins dipped to the water below.
Here Gertrude Jekyll had wanted plants which provided scent and texture so there was lavender and catmint cascading over the walls; rosemary and pinks and for touch, furry grey lambs-ears, one of her favourites. Consideration of these senses was important to Gertrude who had only transferred her attention to garden design when her sight began to fail.
Previously she had been a painter and produced intricate craft work in several different media. Friendship with John Ruskin and Burne-Jones had led her to the belief that 'painting was not enough' and encouraged by William Morris no less, she had taken up metal work, embroidery and wood carving.
A long rill with raised terraces runs down each side of the garden. The West Rill is mainly planted with shrubs and roses; the East Rill dominated by herbaceous plants such as irises, poppies and red hot pokers with sedums and euphorbia. Jekyll used citrus fragranced choisya a lot, the masses of white blossom 'lighting up' corners.
The water features are beautiful. A recessed wall forming a semi-globe with a pool forming the bottom half of the sphere. Water flows along narrow channels - the rills - planted with arrowhead, water plantain and forget-me-not. Ribbon like loops of stone act as little weirs to control the water levels and form planting holes for deeper rooted plants.
Throughout the garden the rough grey stone quarried from behind the house, is used extensively for walls with balustrading and dressed stone for ornamentation carved from golden ham stone, from the quarries on Ham Hill near Stoke sub Hamdon.
The West and East rills are linked by the 230 feet long pergola; honeysuckle and clematis clambering up the alternating round and square pillars; greenfinches and coal tits enlivening the scene. The idea of the central Great Plat was to take the eye away from the ugly facade of the house! The paths follow a geometric pattern around a sun dial.
This contrasts with the small enclosed space called the Rotunda. Lots of interesting stonework and a circular mirror pool in the centre designed to reflect the sky. Here the colours were blue, white and grey but nearby is the Victorian Terrace, which pre-dates the Lutyens/Jekyll garden, still laid out with regimented rows of bedding plants in clashing oranges, reds and pinks, so different from Jekyll's anarchic drifts of subtle shades.
The Rotunda leads to the Orangery, a neo-classical building designed by Lutyens, now used for weddings. The young architect first met Gertrude Jekyll when he was twenty. She was forty-six. They went on to design many wonderful gardens together. He called her Aunt Bumps.
In the 1990's a much earlier landscape garden was restored; originally created between 1750 and 1786 in a combe to the north of the house with forty acres of woodland, lakes and temples, an octagonal summerhouse, mausoleum, Chinese Bridge and magnificent waterfall called the Great Cascade.
A walk around the full circuit of this garden takes about two hours. Hestercombe is two miles north of Taunton just outside the village of Cheddon Fitzpaine.
Acknowledgements and thanks to Sue Neale and her Ilfracombe Floral Art Club for arranging the visit to Hestercombe and for throwing the outing open to non-members - and for publicising this in the Berrynarbor Newsletter.
When I knew that the Sterridge Valley was going to be closed for 6 weeks, I thought my plant sales would be low, so I asked at the Children's Hospice if they could make me a poster saying that I was still selling plants and that you could drive up and turn round easily. They printed two lovely posters for me with their logo on which I displayed in the village.
I am able to tell you that with your help in buying plants I have taken nearly £600 already this year. Please keep coming up the Valley as we have now been told that the road is to be closed for an extra 3 weeks and I should love to beat last year's total of £800!
Over the last ten years since I started to sell plants I have been able to donate £5,500 which is spent on the upkeep and renewal of items in the Narnia Garden, a beautiful part of the Hospice which is used by the children and their families.
The Narnia Sensory Garden is based on the fairy tale adventures written by C.S. Lewis for his goddaughter Lucy.
Thank you once again and do keep coming up the Sterridge Valley to Higher Rows, it is even a lovely flat walk up to us and there are very few cars at the moment! My thanks to everyone.
Harry W - Aged 9
TREV'S TWITTERS - IN PRAISE OF WINE
Been as wise, at least been as merry as we,
He'd have thought better on't, and instead of the brine
Would have filled the vast ocean with generous wine.
What trafficking then would have been on the main,
For the sake of good liquor as well as for gain!
No fear then of tempest, or danger of sinking,
The fishes ne'er drown that are always a-drinking.
The hot thirsty sun would drive with more haste
Secure in the evening of such a repast;
And when he'd got tipsy would have taken his nap
With double the pleasure in Thesis's lap.
By the force of his rays and thus heated with wine,
Consider how gloriously Phoebus would shine.
What vast exhalation he'd draw up on high,
To relieve the poor earth as it waited supply.
How happy us mortals when bless'd with such rain;
To fill all our vessels and fill them again;
Nay even the beggar that has ne'er a dish
Might jump in the river and drink like a fish.
What mirth and contentment on everyone's brow,
Hob as great as a prince, dancing after the plough,
The birds in the air as they play on the wing
Altho' they but sip would eternally sing.
The stars, who I think, don't to drinking incline
Would frisk and rejoice at the fume of the wine;
And merrily twinkling would soon let us know
That they were as happy as mortals below.
Had this been the case then what had we enjoy'd,
Our spirits still rising, our fancy ne'er cloy'd;
A pox then on Neptune when t'was in his pow'r
To slip, like a fool, such a fortunate hour.
This lovely 8-verse piece of nonsense was written by Joseph Ritson who was born in humble circumstances at Stockton, near Durham, in 1752. In 1775 he settled in London where he practiced law at Gray's Inn and pursued his literary studies at the British Museum. He was high bailiff of the liberty of the Savoy, complementing his antiquarian interests. He was one of the first to study local poetry and popular legends but was notorious for his fierce attacks on some of the literary leaders of his day. Formerly a Jacobite sympathiser, he became a republican during the French Revolution. He died, impoverished and insane, in 1803 after making a bonfire of manuscripts in his rooms at Gray's Inn.
My Temple with Clusters
Illustrations by Paul Swailes
And barter all joys for a goblet of wine,
In search of Venus no longer I'll run
But stop and forget her at Bacchus' tun.
Yet why thus resolve to relinquish the fair?
'Tis folly with spirits like mine to despair;
For what mighty charms can be found in a glass
If not filled to the health of some favourite lass?
'Tis woman whose charms every rapture impart,
And leads a new spring to the pulse of the heart;
The miser himself, so supreme in her sway,
Grows a convert to love and resigns her his key.
At the sound of her voice Sorrow lifts up her head
And Poverty listens, well pleas'd from her shed;
While Age, in an ecstasy, hobbling along,
Beats time, with his crutch, to the tune of her song.
Then bring me a goblet from Bacchus's hoard,
The largest and deepest that stands on his board;
I'll fill up a brimmer and drink to the fair;
'Tis the thirst of a lover - and pledge me who dare!
MANOR HALL MATTERS
Above you can see our new official name, now registered with the Charity Commission. It's good to stress that the Manor Hall is an independent body and registered charity, run by volunteers from the village. Longstanding residents and those who have been committee members may disagree, but from looking through the files it doesn't look as if the Manor Hall as a charity ever had a name as such, so perhaps this is long overdue!
At the rather well attended AGM on 8th May we reported on 2012/13 as a successful year with the Hall in use on all weekdays and acting as a good venue for occasional weekend events. As a result our finances are reasonably healthy, despite not increasing Hall charges or the rent charged to the School for the Parish Room last autumn. We also thank the Parish Council for their continued financial support and indeed those brave souls who withstood the awful weather for the Berry Revels event of last August. This year's Revels - with hopefully better weather - will be on Tuesday, 6th August,
At the AGM, five of the outgoing committee were re-elected, that is Geoff Adam, Nora and Alan Rowlands, Karen Ozelton and myself, and we are joined by Natalie Stanbury from Pre-School, Lorna Bowden from the Parish Council, Eileen Hobson from the Spinners and co-optees Denny Reynolds and Charlotte Fryer. We still seek nominations from the other organisations with rights to nominate, i.e. the Men's Institute and the Parochial Church Council, to rekindle the earlier practice of user and other groups being part of the management of the Hall. It can only be beneficial for the different groups in the village to have good contact with each other.
To a degree, however, our positive financial position is a result of holding back on some maintenance items and there will be some catch-up expenditure happening later in 2013. We have recently met on site with the Listed Buildings Officer from North Devon Council and hope to develop a positive relationship with the local authority over some of the works likely to be needed soon, such as to the roof timbers in the
old Manor House wing. When up in that roof space, you do wonder how much of that structure actually goes back
to the late 1400's . . .
Len Narborough and the Manor Hall Committee
CAN ANYONE HELP?
I am descended from Thomas Leworthy (c1740-c1784) who married Prudence Benham in Berrynarbor, in 1767. Their son, John, is buried just on the right of the church entrance gate, together with his wife Margaret. Prudence, who remarried after Thomas's death, is buried as Prudence Quick, immediately behind John, also in Berrynarbor.
As you can see, I have done a great deal of digging on this project, but I am completely stuck, as I cannot identify Thomas, an accurate birth date, his parents and his siblings. I've tried at Barnstable Public Library, but no luck! Please, can any of your readers shed some light on this?
NEWS FROM THE PRIMARY SCHOOL
As you read this we hope you are relaxing and enjoying nice summer weather!
The children have worked hard this term, and it was a long one too, 8 weeks! They have also had lots of fun with residentials and various summer activities.
Our Year 5/6 class recently returned from an action packed week on Dartmoor and our Year 3/4 children are soon to return from a 3 day residential at Beam House in Torrington. The Year 3/4 children have also been joined by their peers from West Down on camp and have been having a wonderful time. Year 1/2 pupils have been out on several trips including the farm and a visit to Verity and the Tunnels Beach. We have been very lucky with the weather and everyone has really enjoyed getting out and about.
The children due to start school in September have been attending school for Summer Club during the last few weeks and have settled in well. We look forward to welcoming them in September. All the children have worked extremely hard this year. It has been a pleasure to read through their school reports.
Our Year 5/6 children are practising hard for their show. Every year the children amaze us with their confidence. It is one of the last that this Year 6 do before they leave us for their new secondary schools. We should like to wish Jack, Jak, Luc, Elyse, Disnie, Shannon, Addie and Louis all the best for the future and we look forward to hearing how they get on.
The new school year will start on Thursday 5th September.
We hope all the children and parents have a lovely summer break and look forward to seeing you all in September.
Sue Carey - Headteacher
Below are two of the illustrated poems the children wrote for the 'Playing the Field' event. All the poems will be available to view at the Horticultural & Craft Show on Saturday, 24th August.
The poems were sent to Beaford Arts and six were selected by Katee Woods for inclusion. Katee writes:
I should like to give a huge thank you to everyone that submitted poems for my art work. The high standard made it incredibly difficult for me to choose which poems to use and I would have used more if my hopscotch board was bigger and I could assign more sounds to it! I really appreciate how much hard work everyone put into their poems. Your contributions make my work possible and I'm really grateful for this. These are the poems that I've chosen to use.
Kiera in Reception - I really loved the delivery of your poem, and how you
describe the hungry foxes and slimy snails.
Amilia in Year 2 - This is a very poetic piece and there are lots of
interesting descriptive words which is great.
Frankie in Year 3 - you're obviously a very confident speaker and you
read your poem very clearly. Your poem is also very positive which is
Rueben in Year 4 - This poem has an intriguing mysterious quality. I love
the line 'In the air, birds swoop and dive but there is no sound'.
Ellis in Year 5 - I really enjoy the part in which you talk about the hidden
places in the countryside, and how different environment features
interact with each other.
Jack in Year 6 - there is lots of use of onomatopoeia in this poem which
really brings it to life. There is a definite vibrancy to this piece.
I hope to see you all at Playing the Field and, again, a huge thank you to everyone who got involved!
RURAL REFLECTIONS 59
Two benches have previously featured in articles I have written, one of which is situated on Cairn Top, a summit southwest of Ilfracombe. At 550 feet above sea level, its northerly view takes in the seven peaks and troughs of the undulating Tors, Ilfracombe's western fringe, the eastern slopes of Score Valley and the high points of Big Hangman and Holdstone Down on Exmoor. The vista appreciates a wide panoramic outlook to the Bristol Channel and the Gower peninsula beyond; and on a clear day the Pembrokeshire coastline.
The plaque on the bench reads: "Special Memories of Mum and Dad. The Folks Who Lived on the Hill". A simple inscription, yet one so fitting for two people [more apt perhaps for my father] whose key specification when looking for property was to live up high and have a view. My father also had a requirement for his home to be in the countryside, or at the very least on the outer fringes of a conurbation so that green fields were within stretching distance. And who could blame him? The commute home from Smithfield Market was far from pleasant, a journey that lengthened year by year as road haulage increased. Yes, the drive to work was traffic-free guaranteed; but at the expense of starting work at half-past three each weekday morning!
In contrast my mother never fully exhaled the 'Big Smoke' inside her. The countryside wasn't really her 'sort of thing' - although towards the end of her life she did express a regret that she had not learnt more about the wild flora and fauna around her. That did not, however, prevent her from expressing a wish to have her ashes scattered outside Marks and Spencer's in Epsom - the one and only place where, so she claimed, she was truly happy. I'm rather pleased to say she was dissuaded from this idea! Forever the city girl, she needed to live where 'life' was never too far away.
Which brings me back to the bench upon the hill. When I asked the Cairn Conservation Carers to erect a bench in memory of my parents, I had no idea how significant the view from Cairn Top would be in portraying their lives. There was the hustle and bustle of the town below acting as a reminder of their urban background; their preference for suburbia mimicked by the Shields, a steep estate clinging to Score Valley on the very edge of town; the livestock on the surrounding hills a reflection of my father's livelihood; and my mother's love of seaside excursions along with my father's fondness for the sea reflected in Ilfracombe's coastline and the Bristol Channel.
Having these subtle recollections within the bench's panorama became a great source of comfort through those early and sometimes raw days of grief. But the reminders also bestowed upon me an unexpected yet much needed sense of resolve: that my parents' traits would continue to live on in me. For I, too, had inherited the very characteristics of my mother and father that were sketched out in the vista before me: a preference for the countryside rather than the city whilst also having a need to live amongst civilisation; and a strong desire to have wildlife, livestock and wildflowers close by whilst also being near to the coast.
Perhaps my parents were trying to tell me something. If that were indeed the case, then I did not listen. That leads me on to the second bench I have written about, a bench along the country lane connecting Dolton Beacon and Riddlecombe, a hamlet where we lived for fifteen months. Yes, a hamlet. No shop, no pub, no church, no village hall. Just very pleasant properties in a very pleasant hamlet. To give it fair due, it ticked two of the boxes. Firstly, it had wildlife and wildflowers on tap and in abundance. Secondly, livestock was provided courtesy of stabled horses opposite, sheep being driven by farmer and dog along the hamlet's thoroughfare, and a field with Jersey cows to the rear - making a cup of tea whilst admiring their lovely faces is the one thing I do miss. But the nearest shop was two miles, the nearest village five miles and a trip into town meant going via Dolton Beacon if the needle on the petrol gauge was close to red. What's more, a trip to the coast was a planned excursion.
I am, however, pleased to say that a move to Yelland has resolved the problem. All four boxes are ticked. Bideford and Barnstaple are within easy reach. The Taw Estuary is a daily sight. The countryside is within stretching distance. And a horses' field borders our back garden, a garden where one can stand and hear the echo of bleating sheep; and where, if I listen intently, I can hear my parents whispering: "You have found it at last - a lovely home for you both. Enjoy it. For we will live on through you and enjoy it with you."
PLAYING THE FIELD
Well where to start? What a fabulous day - the sun came out to play and so did Berrynarbor! From the minute the bells rang at 10.01, [Michael apologised for being a minute late] we knew we had got ourselves a party. The Manor Hall and St Peter's looked fabulous and the bacon butties were flying out the frying pan outside The Globe. The whole village was just abuzz.
The church was packed for the Berrynarbor Choir who put on a great performance. They were not the only singers, with musical entertainment in the garden at the pub and Langleigh house. The village was filled with music and by the time you reached the playing field, laughter. In over
12 hours I only heard one child cry.
At a conservative guess 300 people enjoyed the School Fete and the Sound UK's installations. It was a great shame that the junk yard orchestra did not take place, due to illness, but there was still plenty to do with all the stalls.
As the afternoon wore on we were treated to some great music from the Fords in the field as well as an incredibly competitive welly-wanging competition. Mark Worth won the golden boot award for the men with an impressive throw of 25.5 metres and Laura Rice was by far the best lady with 18.8 metres.
Then it was on to South Lee for a magical, if somewhat smokey bonfire and great sounds
from the Knowleberries. Yep we had our own mini Glastonbury but without the mud. By this stage Leigh and John were barbecued out having cooked over 400 burgers and sausages. Thank you Chris and Barbara for letting over 200 people come and dance in your barn.
There are a million people to thank but without Beaford Arts we should never have been brave enough to do it. Thanks to their input and support, at absolutely no cost, we dragged people in from far and wide and the local businesses had a bumper day. The shop takings were the highest ever, B and B's were full and the tea shops did a roaring trade. Best of all the PTFA raised an incredible £2,000 for the School.
Thank you to every single one of you who contributed in a myriad of ways and to all those who turned out to join the fun. Last but not least very special thanks to Jenny, Sally and Karen who were mad enough to agree to join John and me in playing down in the field. We all had fun.
MOVERS AND SHAKERS NO. 46
LADY MARGARET FORTESCUE
13th December 1923 - 25th May 2013
Past Chatelaine of Castle Hill, Filleigh and Fearless Huntswoman
I had in mind another August 'Mover and Shaker', that is until I read the obituary of this feisty 'Grande Dame' who died this year aged 89.
Described as a tiny, birdlike figure, Lady Margaret was an accomplished horsewoman who preferred to ride side-saddle and enjoyed fast hunting and perilous jumping. Needless to say, this led to bruising falls, although after talking to her doctor and taking a few painkillers washed down with wine, she usually carried on! One exception was when her horse fell with her from a bridge into the river and according to a friend 'half an ankle came away with her boot'. Only quick action by an orthopaedic surgeon saved her foot. She also loved yellow Labradors, which endears her to me.
Lady Margaret was born at Ebrington Manor, near Chipping Campden in 1923, the third of four children born to Viscount and Viscountess Ebrington [later to accede to the title of Earl and Countess Fortescue and move to Castle Hill in 1932 on the death of his father.]
Lady Margaret's ancestors can be traced back to William the Conqueror. In the words of her daughter, Lady Arran, "Legend has it that our ancestor Sir Richard Fort saved William's life by shielding him from his enemies." Thus the family motto became: Forte scutum salus ducum - A strong shield saves the Kingdom." [Does Forte scutum give the family name, I wonder?]
The first Baron Fortescue was created in 1749 and the third Baron became Earl Fortescue 40 years later. Since then, various Earls have become Lord Lieutenants of Ireland or Devon, have had distinguished careers in the army or politics, and have developed their various estates. Lady Margaret's father became a Knight of the Garter, and at Queen Elizabeth's coronation, helped hold the canopy over her. When royalty came to Devon on public duties, they almost invariably stayed and were entertained at Castle Hill, and when the family went up-country, it was usually by private train.
Lady Margaret's grandfather acquired a further 20,000 acres - largely for stag-hunting - from the Knight Brothers, those folk from the industrial midlands who created Pinkworthy Pond as part of an aborted plan to remove iron ore from Exmoor, and wanted to turn rough moorland into arable farmland.
In 1934 Castle Hill suffered a severe fire, sadly resulting in the death of the housekeeper and a housemaid. Over the years, its Palladian proportions had been altered by the addition of another floor to cope with enlarged families. After the fire, Lady Margaret's parents decided to re-build it to its original design and that remains to this day. During the rebuilding, the family and staff moved to their house in Simonsbath - now the Simonsbath House Hotel. This had panelled rooms downstairs, primitive bedrooms with only one bathroom between them, lino on the floors and with only smoky peat fires, was quite cold. But the children loved it! Her uncle rented Emmett's Grange, so her cousins and friends were nearby. They had a tutor in the mornings and went riding most afternoons, enjoying a lovely happy childhood.
When they returned to Castle Hill, her parents kept in touch with events at Simonsbath. They were always responsible landlords.
In 1938 Lady Margaret was sent to school in Switzerland, but at the start of WW2, she was sent to an English school and was evacuated from London to Newbury.
During the war, life changed. Lady Margaret's father went back to the Army and her mother was head of Devon's Land Army, Red Cross, and WVS. There were 4 Land Army girls at Castle Hill. Her brother, Peter, was posted first to Palestine and then Egypt but was sadly killed at Alamein in 1942 aged 22. As he was unmarried, the title of Earl Fortescue moved to her father's brother and his son is the present Earl. A boys' prep. school was evacuated to Castle Hill and there were evacuees from London in the cottages.
During the 1940's, Lady Margaret's father was approached by the Forestry Commission to plant conifers on part of his land - the Chains. He thought this was good use of the land, but because of strong local opposition [resulting in the formation of the Exmoor Society], he dropped the idea. She agreed with his non-action.
In 1948 Lady Margaret married Bernard van Cutsem, a Newmarket racehorse trainer, and went to live in Newmarket, but visited her parents frequently. They had two children: Miss Eleanor  and Miss Rosamund . They divorced in 1968.
1958 was a sad year for Lady Margaret. Her father died on June 14, his 70th birthday and her mother died 4 days before him. Thus, as the 13th generation, she inherited one of Britain's largest landholdings, 30,000 acres of Exmoor. This covered land, manor houses and tenanted farms at Filleigh, Simonsbath and Challacombe. Faced with enormous death duties, Lady Margaret sold large parts of Exmoor although later she admitted that she wished she had borrowed money rather than sell land and tenanted farms.
As a memorial to her parents, she rebuilt the Triumphal Arch leading to the main house, and constructed the Ebrington Tower in memory of her brother. If you visited Light Quest, some years ago, you would have seen both of these.
She also ensured that the new North Devon Link Road was re-routed behind the house rather than through the 18th century Park in front of it.
In 1989 she handed over the house to Eleanor, now The Countess of Arran, and retired to The Garden House, a Palladian-style bungalow in the walled garden, known as The Bungy.
Latterly, she gave up hunting but rode most mornings and enjoyed having friends to stay. She took her dog to pick up at shoots during the winter and remained a Governor then Vice Chairman of West Buckland School [originally founded and endowed by her family]. She was also a Governor at Filleigh School.
Lady Arran now runs the estate and does an enormous amount of charitable work. As well as traditional activities on the Estate, she has opened the gardens to visitors, will host weddings and corporate events and enables, as she puts it, "You, our visitors, to enjoy this small corner of paradise".
What a history! What a future!
PP of DC
Following the success of their Jubilee Car Fun Hunt, Lorna and Michael have very kindly agreed to run another, this time to boost the coffers of the Newsletter.
The Trail can be completed at any time between Monday,
26th August and Sunday, 22nd September, so no one has the excuse that they are too busy and there isn't time! Look out for posters.
The Trail will take as long as you like [you could even do it on more than one day] and may well take you to places you never knew existed!
Entry will be £5.00 per car and Entry Forms will be available from the Shop or Chicane from the 26th August and should be returned again by the end of Sunday, 22nd September.
Prizes will be given to the 3 highest scoring entries.
Please have a go and encourage all friends and relations and any visitors to do so too. Maps are not necessary but an OS map of the area could help.
VIEW NO. 144
This photographic postcard was sent from Berrynarbor on the 17th July 1928. It is addressed to a young lady in Garforth near Leeds and the message reads:
"Hope you are enjoying the same good weather we are having. We are right in the country on the cliffs almost and have wonderful views."
Naturally, when I purchased the postcard through e-bay, I was hoping that it was somewhere in Berrynarbor. However, I am now of the opinion that it could be anywhere along the coast from Berrynarbor, Combe Martin and even on towards Lynton and Lynmouth. Indeed, it has even been suggested that it could be somewhere like Martinhoe.
For this reason I am appealing to you all to take a good look at this house, or even rectory, to see if you can throw any light upon its whereabouts.
The only clues are that it has old type sash windows, a low profile slated roof and what appears to be a large and well looked after garden.
Because it has been posted in Berrynarbor, it is my belief that it is probably within a few miles of here, that is anywhere between Hele Bay and Combe Martin.
I am really hoping that someone will be able to come up with an answer or positive suggestion.
Tower Cottage, July 2013