Edition 27 - December 1993

Artwork by: Sunday School


'Tis Christmas Eve and dusk is creeping softly with the breeze,
Then one by one the fairy lights shine forth on Christmas trees,
Glancing through a lighted window as I hurry by,
I glimpse a cheerful gathering of children reaching high,
To decorate the Christmas tree, their faces beaming bright -
A lovey tableau standing out in an ethereal light.
The snow is falling softly now - a quietness fills the air,
I pass as a church and see a crib with Jesus lying there.
Fondly Mother Mary and the Three Wise Men look down,
I look more closely and see a tiny, jewelled crown,
A halo bright around His head, a sweet contented smile,
I feel the peace and sanctity and I linger for a while.
The snow is falling thicker now, the bells begin to ring,
'Tis Christmas and I hear the choir and people sing
The carols. and the hymns of praise to worship Him most high,
I join the throng and am no more a simple passer by.

Bettina Brown
Combe Martin


Artwork: Judie Weedon


It doesn't seem possible that this is the Fifth Christmas edition of the Newsletter! Guided by Sally Barten, the covers, back and front, for this issue have been designed, drawn and coloured entirely by the following children from Berrynarbor SUNDAY SCHOOL:

Heidi Bayes
Charlotte Fryer
Joshua Knight
Lucia and Sebastian Seston-Ferdinand
Ryan Davis
Katie Gubb
Benjamin Sanders
Sophia Stavrinou

Thank you all. I hope you will be as delighted, as I am sure the readers will be, with the results of your hard work and enjoyment. I am also very grateful to Jim Williams of Rotapress for the printing.

The poems from Bettina Brown and Cynthia Parkin - both from Combe Martin - and Paul Swailes's illustrations, like all the contributions, are very much appreciated.

No sooner will the Festive Season be over than it will be time to start thinking about the next issue - February. As usual, items should be at the Post Office or Chicane by the middle of January.

Judie - Ed




The October meeting is when members look ahead to 1994 - prospecting Committee nominees and reviewing the Programme. Owing to bad weather, our speaker - on Home and Personal Security - was unable to attend, so members discussed their own arrangements.

A lovely sunny morning and wonderful support for the Coffee Morning in aid of Mission to Seamen meant that we were able to send them a cheque for £80, and we look forward to hearing how much was collected on the Mission stall. Grateful thanks to one and all.

A well attended Annual Meeting on 2nd November re-elected the Committee en bloc with one addition, Tricia Hampson. ' Yours Truly' remains as President with Rosemary Gaydon [Treasurer] and Ann Hinchliffe [Minute Secretary]. Members wished Jean Priest well on her travels, and appreciated her willingness to help whenever she is back in Devon. Kath Arscott gave an interesting account of her attendance as our delegate at the Autumn Council Meeting held in Paignton and members were able to peruse the new W.I. publication "Devon Within Living Memory" - certainly a good read that would make a lovely present. From a sparkling selection of broaches, Edna Barnes's was chosen as the winner of the competition. The 7th December will be our Social Afternoon - please don't forget to bring a wee gift.

May I on behalf of all members of Berrynarbor W. I. wish readers a Very Happy Christmas and All things GOOD for 1994.

Vi Kingdon - President

Forget about the calendar,
Think not of age or youth,
But spend the precious year
In search of life's eternal truth.



The time has come round once again for Ilfracombe College Musical Society to stage their annual production. This year it will be the ever-popular Gilbert and Sullivan's 'The Mikado'. Performances will be at: Lynton Town Hall on Tuesday, 30th November, and the Pavilion Theatre, Ilfracombe, from Wednesday 1st to Saturday, 4th December. All performances begin at 7.30 p.m. and tickets are £4.00 [£3.00 concessions] with the bonus of 2 £4.00 tickets for the price of 1 on the Wednesday and Thursday nights. Tickets are available from the College, The Lantern and The Chocolate Box.

With a full orchestra and a cast that includes Elaine Fanner and Peter Hinchliffe, this promises to be excellent entertainment for all the family. Please come along.

Anne Jenkins - I.C.M.S



Best wishes to Philip Camfield who it hoped is now fully recovered from his accident in Ilfracombe several weeks ago.

Get well wishes to Margaret Tyrrell who is in hospital after suffering a second stroke and Val Bowden who has been in hospital with asthma problems. You are both in our thoughts.



The Charity distribution of Christmas Cards will take place this year as usual.

The Manor Hall Management Committee will be organising the distribution for a contribution of 10p per card. The Collecting Box will be in the Post Office from the 11th to 18th December.



Parents please note that the Primary School finishes on Wednesday, 22nd December and returns on Thursday, 6th January.

The College breaks up on Tuesday 21st December and starts the Spring Term on Wednesday, 5th January.



No Job Too Small


Tel: (01271) 883150



Best wishes to Gladys and Ron on the special occasion of their Golden Wedding on 30th October, 1993.

On Saturday, 30th October, 1993, celebrations were held in The Globe for the Golden Wedding Anniversary of Ron and Gladys Toms.

Ron, a born and bred Berrynarborite, met Gladys whilst she was holidaying in Berrynarbor. She was born in Great Linford in Buckinghamshire, later moving to Sudbury in Middlesex, where they were married in 1943. After their wedding they came to live in the Village and their first home was on Hagginton Hill. Two years later they moved to Birdswell Cottages, where they have lived ever since.

Ron spent 49 years working on Home Barton Farm and was presented with a long service award at the Devon County Show in 1980. In his retirement Ron enjoys gardening and Gladys is a keen member of the W.I.

Their family live locally - Ray, their son, lives with them and their daughter, Sheila, and her husband, Tony, and grandsons, Craig and Darren, live at Mortehoe.

R.T. and S.B.

Ron and Gladys would like to thank all friends and relations who sent them cards on their Golden Wedding - they received 166! Also for the many presents.

Sheila and Ray would like to take this opportunity to thank Lynne and Phil Bridle of The Olde Globe Inn, and all their staff, for organising a lovely evening to celebrate their mother and father's Golden Wedding Anniversary.

Congratulations Gladys and Ron. We wish you good health and many more happy years together.


Artwork: Angela Bartlett


If like me, having indulged in the traditional Christmas turkey with all its trimmings, the last thing you feel like is a heavy Christmas pudding, why not try this ' frozen' one for a complete change.

Its very easy to make and ingredients can be changed to suit your taste.

Basic Recipe
  • 1 lb mixed dried fruit
  • 1 large cup of spirit [brandy, rum, whisky]
  • 2 oz flaked almonds [optional]
  • 1 oz glace cherries [optional]
  • 1 block of vanilla ice cream

Soak the dried fruit overnight in the spirit. In a large bowl, break the ice cream into small pieces, add the fruit, nuts and cherries. Mix well with fork, but swiftly, as you must not let the ice cream thaw TOO much. Pack into a pudding basin and freeze.

On Christmas Day, turn out and decorate with brandy-flavoured cream and a sprig of holly.



Artwork: Debbie Rigler Cook


Congratulations to Matthew Walls on his fund-raising efforts for the Devon Air Ambulance [see article].

Belated congratulations and best wishes to David and Kerry Stevens on the birth of their son, Samuel, weighing in at over 10 lbs on the 9th August. After leaving the Navy, David has just completed a BEd degree at Winchester and is now teaching Design and Technology at Crofton Comprehensive School, Stubbington, near Gosport. Congratulations, too, to the proud grandparents, Anna and Steve.

Congratulations and best wishes to Nicky [Songhurst] and Spencer Manley on their recent marriage.

Rebecca Hewison has just celebrated in style her 112th birthday! Born in Queen Victoria's reign, she lived in Berrynarbor for some years before returning to her home town of Grimsby. The picture shows her with a floral gift delivered by the town's Mayor and Mayoress.

Luke William Denzil arrived on the 4th September, weighing 8 lb 10 oz, the son of proud parents John and Diana Needham. Congratulations to the three of you and also to Gran Verona and Grandad Denzil.

Degree congratulations to Rob and Jeremy King. Rob has just been awarded a MSc in Neuro-Biology from Queen 's College, Cambridge, and is now working for a pharmaceutical company in Sussex Jeremy recently received a BEng. degree from Brighton University and is now job hunting. Meanwhile, sister Julie is in her final year completing a degree in Tourism Studies at Cardiff. Good luck to all three of you.



A befriending scheme has recently started in the Ilfracombe, Combe Martin and Berrynarbor area, that is looking to help lonely, confused or distressed people in the community. The scheme aims to match trained volunteers with somebody less fortunate, with the view to increasing their social outlook. The Tor House community mental health resource centre is our base and the scheme is supplementing the care provided by health and social services. New volunteers and people requiring this service are always being sought. For more information, please contact me - CHRIS BRAY on Ilfracombe 866349. Befrienders are people who are caring, tolerant and patient, AND ARE ABLE TO: * spare one hour or more a week * offer a listening ear * help someone who feels lonely and unloved * encourage and support someone who is afraid * be a special friend *.


Council for the Protection of Rural England

Devon Branch

President Sir John Quicke

October 1993

Mr. John F.L. Vince,
Clerk to Berrynarbor Parish Council,
HoIly Lodge,
Horne Park Road,
Ilfracombe EX34 8JT

Dear Mr. Vince,


Mrs J. Morrow was kind enough to give me your address; I wanted to write to you to see if I could dispel some of the unhappiness that my remark to the press (that Berrynarbor was too pretty for its own good) had caused. Certainly upsetting anyone was furthest from my thoughts - rather the opposite . If I were a resident of a village which over so many years has consistently maintained such a high standard and still was runner-up I would feel bitter and frustrated and my remark was meant as a bit of consolation as much as anything. I am sorry that the effort has so misfired.

Berrynarbor is one of the outstanding villages in Devon, certainly among those that enter the Best Kept Village competition. When I drive in, down the hill from the Combe Martin road, I am struck every time by the idyllic site, the compatibility of the buiIdings and the way they seem to fit together in the space available - the sheer beauty and rightness of it. Looking at the village any judge will tend to react that it is easy to get everyone in a village like Berrynarbor to keep It Best Kept, perhaps forgetting the effort that has gone in to maintaining that very high standard over many years. If you have a viIlage which is less well endowed naturally then the effort to make it Best Kept is obvious and probably it is harder to get the whole community participating.

It is the only answer that I can come up with to the question why is Berrynarbor always runner-up, which is what I was asked by the press. I am sure that it is not any regional bias in the judging - local Judges, in the preliminary judging, always rate Berrynarbor very high, but in the last two years while I have been responsible for the competition, one final judge almost local to you and another from East Devon have come to the same conclusion.

I do hope that this may be of help to you. My best wishes to the Chairman and members of your Council - I hope you will come back fighting next year.

Yours sincerely,

Jean Allen, Hon Organiser, Best Kept Village Competition,
West Woodlands, Newton Tracey, Barnstaple EX31 3PP



There was a thick covering of sycamore, beech and oak leaves underfoot along the path which starts beside Fremington House and then skirts around Fremington Camp. A lot of blue tits, chaffinches and blackbirds flitted to and fro across the path and among them there a were a couple of marsh tits, with their glossy black caps.

As Fremington Pill came into view, we could hear agitated piping from a redshank and an oyster catcher, standing together at the water's edge. A close look revealed a large number of redshanks further out on the Pill, their brown streaked plumage blending with the mud. Only the movement of their long scarlet legs gave them away. A redshank is about half the size of a curlew with a straight bill, red at the base and dark at the tip.

Wavy edged polypody ferns grew around the bases of the trees and beside one there was a heap of beech nut husks, so it was no surprise when a squirrel spend down the trunk.

As the path descended to Fremington Quay itself, a cormorant, which was perched on top of a tall post, made an odd and conspicuous sight. Here on the beach was a curlew with more oyster catchers.

We turned left along the old railway track towards Isley Marsh and viewing across the Taw Estuary to Heanton and Chivenor.

At Saltpill Duck Pond we stopped to watch cootes popping in and out of the reeds. A heron crouched by some reedmace. It is a strangely shaped patch of water. Fingers of land project into the pond and on those and on an island in the middle, grew masses of tamarisk bushes .

Tamarisk can grow up to twelve feet in height and with its feathery branches and small evergreen leaves, it is able to withstand salt winds. It may flower from July until as late as November in mild districts and on this dull November's day, many clusters of pale pink flowers were still in evidence.

Sue H



"Unhappy the country which has no heroes.
Unhappy the country which needs them. "



It was following the dramatic rescue, last February, of a holidaymaker staying at Middle Lee, who had fallen off the cliffs at Watermouth and lain with his Alsatian dog for about six hours, that Matthew Walls became interested in the work of the Devon Air Ambulance.

He was so impressed that when he read that the funds to run the Trust's paramedically manned helicopter were in desperate straits, he felt impelled to do something to help:

Matthew is now the proud owner of a Certificate awarded for his efforts.

Cash raised

HOLIDAYMAKERS at Watermouth Cove, near Ilfracombe have raised £60 for the Devon Air Ambulance.

A collection jar was on the bar at the resort by barman Matthew Walls, who read of the Air Ambulance's need for funds in the Journal.




2nd June Peace Celebrations

The picture shows both sides of the small silver medallion struck for Ilfracombe to commemorate the end of the Boer War in South Africa on 2nd June, 1902, which was presented to all the school children of Ilfracombe. This one was presented to George Geen who was born at Hele Bay in 1898 and started school when he was just three, at the Church School of St. Phillip and St. James. At the outbreak of the First World War, George joined the Devonshire Regiment and was sent to fight in France. Upon his return he came to live in Berrynarbor where he spent all his working life.

George carried out farm work and following his marriage to Hilda Toms at St. Peter's Church in 1923, they lived on Hagginton Hill.

In the late 1920's George left farming to work on the Ilfracombe to Barnstaple Railway Line, involved with track maintenance until the Depression and General Strike of the early 1930's. From the late 1930's, he obtained employment with the Barnstaple Rural District Council as a Roadman, dealing with road repairs and maintenance; he was called to assist with the restoration of Lynmouth after the tragic flood in August 1952. George retired in 1963.

In the early 1970's, he and Hilda moved to Combe Martin. Hilda died in 1978 and George some 12 years later in 1990, and their ashes are buried in St. Peter's Churchyard.

My thanks to their daughter, Mrs. Greta Harris, who now lives in Sudbury in Middlesex, for this information.

Tom Bartlett




Illustrated by: Paul Swailes

Mary stood in the kitchen.
Baking a loaf of bread.
An Angel flew in through the window.
"We've a job for you, " he said.
"God in his big gold heaven,
Sitting in his big blue chair,
Wanted a mother for his little son,
Suddenly saw you there."
Mary shook and trembled,
"It isn't true what you say."
"Don't say that," said the angel,
"the baby's on its way. "
Joseph was in his workshop
Planing a piece of wood.
"The old man's past it," the neighbours said
"That girl's been up to no good."
"And who was that elegant fellow, "
They said, "in the shiny gear? "
The things they said about Gabriel
Were hardly fit to hear.
Mary never answered,
Mary never replied.
She kept the information,
Like the baby, safe inside.
It was election winter.
They went to vote in town.
When Mary found her time had come
The hotels let her down.
The baby was born in an annexe
Next to the local pub.
At midnight, a delegation
Turned up from the Farmer's Club.
They talked about an explosion
That made a hole in the sky,
Said they'd been sent to the Lamb & Flag
To see God come down from on high.
A few days later a bishop
And a five-star general were seen
With the head of an African country
In a bullet-proof limousine.
"We've come," they said, "with tokens
For the little boy to choose. "
Told the tale about war and peace
In the television news.
After them came the soldiers
With rifle and bomb and gun,
Looking for enemies of the state.
The family had packed and gone.

Charles Causley

This poem is one chosen for the Key Stage 4 [G.C.S.E.] Oxford English Programme



"Read the book, seen the film, got the T-shirt"? I am not quite sure just who invented this phrase, but how often do you read the book, then see the film [or vice versa] and are disappointed? Is it a mistake to do both?

Anyone who has used their own kids, or borrowed someone else's, as an excuse to see JURASSIC PARK and then read the book, will be aware of the vast difference. Similarly, seeing Tom Cruise in THE FIRM prompted me to read the book, which I enjoyed far more and now plan to read A TIME TO KILL & PELICAN BRIEF also by JOHN GRISHAM.

But films do have their moments - no written word could ever portray the poignancy created by seeing and hearing the prisoners-of-war whistling 'Colonel Bogie' in the film BRIDGE OVER THE RIVER KWAI. And the vision of Rhett Butler carrying Scarlett O'Hara up the stairs and firmly closing the bedroom door, in the film GONE WITH THE WIND, evokes far more passion than any steamy written pages!

I seem to have read and enjoyed a lot of books, and viewed and appreciated many films, but as yet I don't own a T-shirt! Ah well, Christmas is coming!

Sue Paul

Congratulations and belated best wishes, Sue [Joel] on your marriage to Brian Paul in July.


Artwork: Helen Armstead


Sunday Services

  • The Eucharist, 10.30 a.m.
  • Evensong, Combe Martin, 6.00 p.m. (Once a month the Christians Together go from Church to Church, and there is no Evensong.)

Holy Communion

  • Thursdays, 10.00 a.m.

The Rector, the Rev. Keith Wyre [883203] and Prebendary Eppingstone [882802] will discuss Baptisms, Confirmations, Marriages, Bereavements and SHOULD be invited to come and pray with the sick.

Prayer and Bible Study, Combe Martin, every Thursday, 7.30 p.m.

The Rev. Keith Wyer and Preb. Eppingstone ask that wherever possible they are told when anybody falls sick, especially anyone who has to go to hospital [we should rather have this information over and over than not at all!] and always welcome invitations to make pastoral calls. They take this opportunity to wish you all a Blessed and a Merry Christmas, and a Happy and Blessed New Year.

Two special dates, on Thursday, 16th December, there will be a Provincial Carol Service of the R.A.O.B. at St. Peter's Church at 7.30 p.m. to raise funds for the Children's Ward at the North Devon District Hospital. You are all most warmly invited.

The Carol Service You have always come in large numbers to the Carol Service, but as Christmas Day is on a Saturday this year, we have chosen to hold the Carol Service on Wednesday, 22nd December, at 6.30 p.m. and hope this will suit you and you will be able to come along.


Floodlighting of St. Peter' s Church

Early in the evening on Thursday, 11th November, some twenty of us gathered to watch a demonstration of the floodlighting of the Church tower. It really was most impressive and the mellow glow brought out the beauty of the old stonework. The project was agreed on the spot and the light should be installed by December, well in time for Christmas. The cost will be met from individual fund-raising and donations, and possibly a grant from the Council.

A promise has already been given to pay for the illumination of the tower throughout this winter. It is hoped that in future, people will sponsor the lighting, perhaps to mark a special occasion. If you have any queries, please ring Mary on 883881.

Betty Davis & Mary Tucker - Churchwardens



Bon Voyage to Louise Walls who has decided to give up nursing for a while and is off to do some travelling - to New Zealand. Her first stop will be Fiji. Good luck, Louise, and keep us posted on your ventures.

For Sale Gas Poker and Brass Fire Irons, please phone 882725.

"Who's Who in Berrynarbor" This booklet, produced by the Devon Library Services, is now available [especially for newcomers to the village] from the Post Office. The charge for the Ilfracombe edition is £1 per copy, but the Library have kindly agreed that in our case, donations for the booklet may be given instead to our Newsletter funds.

A very warm welcome to Jean and Jim Constantine who will be returning in early December to live up Hagginton Hill. It will be good to have you back!

Advance Notice The North Devon Conservative Association, Berrynarbor Branch, will be holding their A.G.M. in the Manor Hall on Monday, 14th February, at 7.30 p.m.

On 16th October, several people from Berrynarbor took the road to Holsworthy to attend a Surprise Birthday Party for Lynn Sullivan, organised by her daughter, Caroline. Both Richard and Lynn were delighted to see us and asked us to convey their best wishes to all their friends in Berry. Richard is Headmaster of Holsworthy Primary School and Lynn works at Exeter Hospital as a Night Sister. Caroline is married and living in Holsworthy with her husband and two young daughters and Clare is married and lives in Reading.





The Wine Circle had a very successful first meeting when Ivor Francis, the manager of Ilfracombe Augustus Barnett's Wine Shop, presented three white and three red wines from Australia. All were excellent but Hardy's Nottage Hill 1991 and Berry Estates Cabernet Sauvignon/Shiraz 1991 - red with alcohol contents of 13% - were considered best.

Whilst we already have almost 40 members, the Manor Hall is large so we invite you to join us for our Christmas Evening on Wednesday, 15th December, when Chris Long will be presenting his memorable "Wines for Christmas". Our first meeting of the New Year will be on the 19th January, when members will present their favourite wines. Both meetings commence at 8.00 p.m. and normally finish well before 10.00 p.m. with members rolling home!

Tom Bartlett - Publicity


Artwork: Paul Swailes


Pumpkins of all shapes and sizes appeared at The Globe to try their luck in the Competition. The Heaviest was entered by John Weaver/Tom Tucker and weighed 55 lbs, with Jim Brooks' 42 lb'der the runner-up. The first prize for the Best Dressed went to Jackie Weaver's 'Jurassic Park Dinosaur' , with Ray Toms' 'Pumpkin Person' made with vegetables 2nd and Olinder Holden's 'Caterpillar' made with small pumpkins 3rd. [Apologies, Olinder, for having credited Phil and Lynne with the competition idea, not you! - Ed.] The Pumpkin race down Pitt Hill the following day was won by Ann Davies with Stuart Neale and Ivan Clark in hot pursuit. The sweepstake was won by Marie Mason and Joan Woods.

Many thanks to Brian and Gill Mountain for organising the Barn Dance which raised £75 to which must be added the monies raised from: the sale of pumpkin plants - £65, Guess the Weight [won by Gary Songhurst] - £19 .70, Sweepstake - £16.50 and anonymous donation - £5.00. This will now be made up to £200 by the Carnival Club and sent to CHILDREN IN NEED. Thanks to all who took part.

Suggestions are now needed for next year's Carnival Float - a bottle of whisky for the winning idea.


Thursday, 23rd December
Draw at 9.30 p.m.

Christmas Eve
Carols in the Car Park at 7.30 p.m.
Sing-a-long with Gary and Phil - Extension to 11.30 p.m.

Christmas Day
11.00 a.m. to 1.00 p.m.

Boxing Day
Quiz Night with our Resident Quizmistress [Lynne!]

New Year's Eve
Gangsters and Molls are invited to the Fancy Dress Party. Free buffet and entertainment

Thunder Thighs' [Lynne] would like to thank everyone who donated to her Surprise 40th Birthday Party and Present - a balloon ride. However, she is anxious to know if there was an ulterior motive - are you trying to get rid of her?!

Phil & Lynne wish everyone a Happy Christmas


Artwork: Angela Bartlett


Mulled Wine
  • 1 bottle ordinary red wine
  • 1/2 glass port, brandy or liqueur
  • pinch ground mixed spice
  • pinch ground cinnamon
  • pinch ground cloves
  • orange and lemon slices sugar to taste

Pour all the ingredients into a saucepan and warm gently. Serve in warmed glasses. [makes 6 glasses]

Christmas Toddy
  • Juice of 4 lemons
  • a few lime or lemon slices
  • 6 tbsp clear honey
  • 7 fl oz whisky
  • 2 pts boiling water

Place the lemon juice, a few slices of lime/ lemon, honey and whisky in a heat-proof jug. Top up with boiling water. Stir well & and serve hot in warmed glasses. [makes 6 glasses]


Artwork: Angela Bartlett


Berrynarbor Congregational Chapel

Sadly, no photographic or printed postcards appear to have been produced of our fine Congregational Chapel itself, but the card I have chosen shows part of the south side and front, as well as Hagginton Hill - complete with the wall-enclosed Grattons - was produced by Phillipse & Lees of Ilfracombe c1903-4. Note the number of 'missing' properties compared to today's view.


Resulting from my plea for information in the last Newsletter, I am very grateful to Vera Lewis [Ley], who now lives in Epsom, for the following:

    "The first Congregational Church [or Chapel as it was called locally] was built about 1841. It was a small, non-conformist church erected by local men who, fired by emotion and the open-air preaching of Wesley's friend, George Whitfield, gave their services free. Mr. Jones played the melodeon and Sanky hymns, such as 'Rescue the Perishing', were sung. Sadly, after a few years the Chapel became unsafe.

    In the 1880's, Ilfracombe Congregational Church provided the funds for a new Chapel and School Room. This was a much larger building, with tall windows. The pews were well-made, solid and uniform and one wonders who the workmen were who fashioned them. The first deacons were five local men some of whose names have a familiar ring - Jones, Richards, Bowden - and Sunday Services were usually taken by a lay preacher, with the occasional visit from a Preacher. The Rev. Hayter, who was based at West Down, might come once in 3 or 4 weeks, when he would be given tea at one or another of the members' cottages. The small collection was used to pay for oil lamps and heaters.

    Harvest Festivals were the highlight of the Chapel year. First the decorating of the Chapel with fruit, flowers, vegetables, corn and even bread shaped like sheaves of corn. Before the Harvest Service there would be a lavish tea in the school. Farmers' wives would 'take a table', providing crockery and food and I remember the silver tea pots! Devonshire split or cut rounds with jam and cream straight from the dairy and delicious block cake would be served. "

    I recall Alma Gray, or Granny Gray as she was fondly known, telling me, at the grand old age of 97, that "At one time there was a rift in the congregation of the Chapel with half the members going with my grandmother to a room over what is now the Post Office in 'Lower Town ' and the other half remaining in the Chapel with my great-uncle, Tom Richards. The Chapel was built from stone from the quarry near Harper's Mill at the far end of the Sterrage Valley."

Tom Bartlett,
Tower Cottage, December 1993



Members of today's Chapel are holding a CHRISTMAS BAZAAR in the Manor Hall on Saturday, 4th December, at 2.00 p.m. All welcome.




Once again we had a very successful Harvest Festival, the proceeds of which we have sent to this year's charity, the National Children's Home. We also held a sponsored event organised by the NCH in which children from the school took part. The total amount forwarded to the Home from both these events was £207.92.

Diary Dates

  • 7th December - 10.00 a.m. Christmas Coffee Morning at the School. Please join us for coffee and mince pies. Christmas stalls and book fair.
  • 15th December - 1.45 p.m. Dress rehearsal of Christmas performance in the Manor Hall. Members of the community are very welcome to come and watch the children.



As Christmas is getting near again, the time has come for the Playgroup's Christmas Play & Coffee Morning. This will be held on Friday, 10th December, 10.00 a.m. in the Manor Hall. Cake and craft stalls, refreshments, raffle. Any donations of raffle prizes would be greatly appreciated. We look forward to seeing you there.

Playgroup now runs on Monday, Wednesday and Friday mornings, from 9.30 a.m. to 12.00 noon. We still have places available on Mondays and Fridays. The toddler group is run on Friday mornings, 10.00 - 12.00, in the main hall. For 60p why not come and have a chat and meet the other mums in the village? Everyone welcome.




A most interesting and informative evening was held in the Manor Hall on the 12th November, when PC's Geoff Crocker and Mike Walker spoke on ways to prevent the 'opportunist' burglar from paying you a visit and to improve the security of your home. Col. Bob Gilliatt spoke of the aims of the Ilfracombe & District Crime Prevention Panel which does sterling work on behalf of us all, covering the coastal area from Woolacombe to Lynton and inland to West Down. The recent setting up of a 'Business Watch' has dramatically reduced the incidence of shoplifting in Ilfracombe.

We are very lucky in Berrynarbor to have a low crime rate, but we must not get complacent and it was suggested that we increase our Co-ordinators to 4 in number, with additional Contacts. Anyone who would be prepared to help in this way should please ring Bill Berry, 883356. Co-ordinators and Contacts will in future meet on a more regular basis, with at least 2 general Speaker Meetings a year, details of which will be given in the Newsletter.

We shall be sorry to lose Geoff Crocker, our Community Constable, who is currently 'caretaking' for PC Jim Benbow, who will take over shortly. Our best wishes and thanks to Geoff and a warm welcome to Jim and congratulations on his recent marriage.



1stMobile Library in Village from 11.55 a.m.
1st- 4th I.C.M.S. 'The Mikado', Pavilion Theatre, llfracombe, 7.30 p.m.
4thU.R.C. Christmas Bazaar, 2.00 p.m. Manor Hall
6thBadminton Club
7thPrimary School Christmas Coffee Morning, 10.00 a.m. Christmas Social Afternoon
9thU3A Luncheon: Woolacombe Bay Hotel - Christmas Party
10thPlaygroup Christmas Play and Coffee Morning, Manor Hall, 10.00 a.m.
12thChristingle Service, 3.00 p.m. Combe Martin
13thBadminton Club
14thW.I. Christmas Lunch at The Globe.
Parish Council Meeting, 7.30 p.m.
15thMobile Library in Village from 11.55 a.m.
Primary School 'Open' Rehearsal of Christmas Performance, 1.45 p.m. Manor Hall.
College Annual Carol Service, 7.30 p.m.
Wine Circle, Manor Hall, 8.00 p.m.
16thCarol Service of the R.A.O.B., St. Peter's Church, 7.30 p.m.
Family Service with Holy Communion and Carols, St. Peter's, 10.30 a.m.
Christians Together Carol Service, Combe Martin, 6.30 p.m.
20thBadminton Club
21stCollege: Break Up
22ndPrimary School: Break Up. St. Peter's Carol Service, 6.30 p.m.
24thCarols in Globe Car Park, 7.30 p.m.
Midnight Mass, St. Peter's Church, 11.30 p.m.
25thCHRISTMAS DAY Eucharist, St. Peter's, 10.30 a.m.
26thBOXING DAY Eucharist, St. Peter's, 10.30 a.m.
Quiz Night at The Globe
29thFeast of St. Stephen.
31stNEW YEAR'S EVE Fancy Dress Party at The Globe
1stNew Year's Day
4thW.I. Meeting: Talk and Slides "Antarctica & Chilean Fiords" - Kath Arscott
5thCollege: Start of Spring Term
6thPrimary School: Start of Spring Term.
Epiphany - Holy Communion, St. Peter's Church, 10.00 a.m.
10thBadminton Club
11thParish Council Meeting, Manor Hall, 7.30 p.m.
12thMobile Library in Village from 11.55 a.m.
14thU3A Luncheon: Grosvenor Hotel, Ilfracombe. "Blakewell Trout Farm"
15thParochial Church Council Meeting, Combe Martin Church Hali, 7.30 p.m.
17thBadminton Club
19thWine Circle: Members' Favourite Wines, 8.00 p.m. Manor Hall
23rdService of Christians Together, Methodist Church
24thBadminton Club
26thMobile Library in Village from 11.55 a.m.
31stBadminton Club
1stW.I. Meeting: Exmoor Bird Gardens - Mr. D. Reynolds



The tourists have departed,
The summer sun has gone.
Peace reigns throughout the village,
Though there's plenty to be done.
Another coffee morning,
The Bazaar is soon to come,
Attend the weekly whist drive
And things to do-at home.
So stir the Christmas puddings
And for this special dish
Another drop of brandy,
And make yourself a wish.
The men are watching football,
The children have their tree,
And the women set out yet again
On another shopping spree.
As we gather round the table
And each one takes their seat,
We think those in other lands
With not enough to eat.
But it's turkey and plum pudding,
Bells and paper chain,
For old Father Christmas
Is here with us again.

Seaside, Combe Martin


With best wishes to Everyone
for a
and a


Artwork by: Sunday School