Yesterday on the National News, the death of the well-known comedian and actor, Derek Nimmo was reported. His passing brings to an end an association he had in Water Lane with John Clifford, the furniture restorer. Employing John's skills in the restoration of period furniture, Mr Nimmo paid him many a visit and gained much pleasure from it.
The Thumbstick Club will meet on Sunday 21 March at 7.30am on The Knoll. Please drive down and don't be late. Last month we walked Emberton village and once round the park. 'Twas good. We must send our best wishes to Roy Kingswell and with them our hope that it will not be too long before he is seen in the leading rank once more.
Last month an old friend of this village rang from his home in Olney. Question: Did Sherington Church ever have a spire and had we ever heard of Edith Lucas as an artist? Answer: Yes to both questions. St Lauds had a wooden spire on a lead pyramid base. It wasn't all that high - nothing like Olney or 'Anslup - just a 6/8 footer. Bill and Ben removed it in the Forties under instruction of the PCC. Going on to Edith Lucas, she was a farmer's daughter. They farmed Bakers Farm where Peter and Sally Cook and their family now live. Several of her paintings are owned in the parish and three or four hang in the Village School. The particular painting the man mentioned was painted in 1898 and that fits in very well for much of her work was done about the turn of the century.
Are there any candidates among the young lasses of the parish to enlist in the Girl Guides? We hear that the register of membership is at an all time low and if the company is to continue it must gain more members. If any girls, parents, guardians or others are in a position to consider enrolling or helping in any way, please enquire to Mrs Sheridan Clarke, tel: 01234 712047 and she will tell you all about it.
It was while queuing for an order that we noticed our friend from Newport standing alongside. Soon we were talking about the weather and other such things. 'How's Eric?' (That's her husband who has, unfortunately, suffered a stroke which affects his walking.) 'Did you bike down to town?' Yes, she had, on the bicycle she bought from Freddie Friday in 1947 and has used almost daily ever since. 'I worked in Cranfield at the time', said Jean, 'and it was as much as I could afford but it had a 50 year guarantee'. Can you imagine her still riding her bike after 52 years service?
So we popped up to Chicheley on the 20th and bought a cake and a raffle ticket and won a prize. All those people who do so much were still doing it when I left. This time their efforts were in aid of SCAN magazine. You will read all about it elsewhere in SCAN. This is just to say it was most enjoyable.
Had a very nice letter from Rita and Fred Hammond, the subjects of the story in the last issue of SCAN. They thank everyone for all things.
A phone call the other day informs us that the Whitethorn is out. Well, now, we saw some out last week but were waiting for Tom to return to confirm it.
We recently had some 'swan researhers' down by the lower reaches of our river. They were researching as to why the swans were in the field of rape down by Cut Throat Spinney. They came well equipped with Rover Discovery, pins and ribbon markers and some very fine clipboards - the very latest design. When asked what they were up to, they replied they were trying to establish just why the swans were in the rape. The questioner, a local countryman said he thought the swans were in the rape to feed. That seemed to completely confuse them. Maybe they hadn't heard of that before.
The pathetic pace of bureaucracy is adequately and quite accurately demonstrated in the matter of Chicheley Hill Mound, isn't it? How many times will they tell our Parish Council that the work is in hand and the necessary authority has been given to go ahead. As Glynis Johns so ably sings, 'Maybe next year'.
We also had a phone call from Mrs Judy Hoole of the Small House who tells us that she and her friends are organising a Sunflower Growing Competition this summer. The seeds, three in a packet, are going on sale as from now, available from the Post Office and Virginia House Stores, at 50p a packet. The flowers should be well watered and cared for and encouraged to grow to something like 14 or 15 feet because that is the expected competition height. Please enter the fun in any case. The final judging will be in September so you will all have plenty of time to prepare yourselves. The whole event is in aid of Willen Hospice and the prize list is 'something else' and far above the usual standard. They include: an Aston Martin for a weekend (subject to age 25 and a clean licence), a model car by Mercedes Benz (kiddies pedal type), family Euro trip, Saxon Clinic treatment, David Lloyd Health Clinic. These details are rather scant but should anyone wish further information then Mrs Judy Hoole will oblige.
In our rent post came a note from our old friend and past Treasurer, Andrew Turner, lately of Gowles Farm and now of Gayhurst Court. He enclosed a copy of an interesting letter he had received from down Plymouth way from a lady whose husband once owned Gowles Farm. She wondered whether Gowles had been swallowed up in the conurbation of Milton Keynes (in which case she preferred not to know) or whether it had survived and was as she remembered it. Well now, Gowles is not as it was in 1945 but it has certainly survived the mutilation of Milton Keynes and Andrew made reply accordingly.
That young man certainly made a good job of thatching the roof on Dave and Bess Williams house. He hails from Yardley Hastings (you wouldn't expect him to come from anywhere else, would you?) and is married to Bess's sister so he had to put on a good show, didn't he? What a lovely talent to possess and what a tidy pattern he left on the ridge. Well done, Roger.
As we go to press we learn of the passing of Bill Bennett of Church Road. It seems his son-in-law, Roberto, had just called in with his shopping and Bill, who had been playing with the cat, just collapsed and died. Well remembered for supporting all sporting events and taking part in most of them, Bill was a pleasure to know and a very easy-going man. He served his country well in the war seeing service in Burma with the South East Asia Command. His main work was in butchering and many people locally will hold happy memories of Bill Bennett and his Butcher's Van.
Latest update: 5 April 1999
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