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April 1999 Fowards to May 1999 SHIRE
News Index

'The George' to be Re-Opened

What's On In April

70th Birthday Tribute to Mary Howell

Pavement Cyclists

Shire On The Web

St Mary's News

Letters to the Editor

'The George' to be Re-Opened

Members attending the meeting of the Shirehampton Traders Association on the 18 March at the Lamplighters were delighted to learn from a report by P.C. Steve Phillipou of Avonmouth Police that 'The George' is to re-open before the end of August. It is to become a family restaurant/pub, with meals and drinks being served. The floor area will be reduced and windows enlarged to give a more relaxed atmosphere. In addition, for a while the premises will receive low-key monitoring by the Police, in conjunction with the Shire Traders Association, so that a sound and comfortable environment is established. The 'George' is an attractive building and when the coverings have been removed, it will lift the appearance of the High Street, and its re-opening in time for the Millennium celebrations will be very much appreciated by the local community.

The Traders Association meeting continued with suggestions for funding, especially with the Millennium celebrations in view and the decision was made to issue stickers to members with a logo and motto for display on their premises to indicate their membership of the Association. Membership is open to any business, large or small, in Shirehampton, not necessarily in the High Street area, and further details may be obtained from Mrs Nicky of Rodaway & Son, Estate Agents (Tel: 938 0611), who chaired the meeting with Councillor Celia Lukins and 21 members being present.

What's On In April

March 31st, Wednesday: Shirehampton Community Group meets at the Public Hall. Everyone is welcome.

April 1st, Thursday: Townswomen's Guild meets at the Methodist Church Hall at 7.30 p.m.

April 2nd, Good Friday: Easter Concert by Shirehampton Choir 2 p.m. at St. Mary's Church.

April 2nd, Good Friday and Easter Monday, April 5th: Library closed. April 6th Tuesday: Local Councillors are available for consultation, 7.30 p.m. at Jim O Neil House.

April 6th, Tuesday: St. Andrew's Ladies Club meets at 7.30 p.m. at St. Andrew's Church Hall, Avonmouth, to hear about 'silk Craft' by Betty Guinion.

April 7th, Wednesday: Toy Library at Beachley Walk Centre, 1 p.m.-3 p.m. April 7th, Wednesday and every Wednesday: Radio Club meets 7.30-9.30 p.m. at Twyford House. Ring 019856253 for details.

April 7th, Wednesday: West Bristol Arthritis Care meets at 7.30 p.m. at the Public Hall. April 7th, Wednesday: Severnside Police and Community Group at Avonmouth Primary School, Catherine Street at 7.30 p.m. when the Chief Constable is hoping to be present. April 8th, Thursday: Millennium Meeting 7.30 p.m. at the Public Hall. Do come and help to form a programme of local events.

April 10th, Saturday: Car Boot/Table Top Sale 10 a.m.-12 noon at Guide H.Q. St. Mary's Road.

Ring 982-5970 for details.

April 11th, Monday and alternate Mondays, Child Minders Group at the Beachley Walk Centre, 11 a.m.

April 12th, Monday: Summer Term begins for all local schools. April 13th & 27th Tuesdays: Co-operative Women's Guild meets at 6, Portbury Grove, 2 p.m.-4 p.m.

April 14th & 28th Alternate Wednesdays: Women's Fellowship, 7.30 p.m. at St. Bernard's Hall.

April 20th, Tuesday: Shirehampton Stitchers meet at 7.15 p.m. at the Public Hall.

April 20th, Tuesday: Railway Modellers Club meets at the Public Hall t 7.30 p.m. April 20th, Tuesday: St. Andrew's Ladies Club meets at St. Andrew's Church Hall at 7.30 p.m. to hear 'Thank You Doctor' with Susan Marfield.

April 21st, Wednesday: Women's Institute meets at 7.30 p.m. at the Methodist Church Hall to hear Mrs Angela Wood and friend speak on antiques.

April 30th, Friday: Monthly Sequence Dance at the Cotswold Centre, Dursley Road, 7.30 p.m.-10.15 p.m. Admission £1.50.


I give my love, my life, to Him,
He, who died upon the tree, upon the hill, at Calvary,
He died, to take away my sin,
My love, my life, I give to Him,
Who died for me, upon the cross, at Calvary,
His precious blood flowed from his side,
Oh Lord, my God, let me abide with HIM,
Who gave his life, for me, upon the cross at Calvary,
He took my pain, my grief, my sorrow,
Now I do not fear tomorrow,
For one day I will live with Him,
Who gave His life, his blood, for me
My LORD who died, Upon the Cross, At Calvary


70th Birthday Tribute to Mary Howell

Many congratulations to Mary Howell who celebrates her 70th birthday on Monday 26 April. Those of you who know Mary - surely there cannot be many people in Shirehampton who don t -will know that she is tireless, extremely generous, always outgoing and cheerful and despite having had two knee replacement operations, still continues with her various voluntary work, which she has done since retiring from the Co-op five years ago.

Our very best wishes and lots of love to you Mary, a very dear friend, on the occasion of your 70th birthday, from everyone at Women's Fellowship, the CLIC shop, Station Road Playgroup and all your many friends at Shirehampton.

Pavement Cyclists

It has come to my notice that members of the public, of various ages, have been seen riding on the pavements in the area. While the roads are getting increasingly dangerous for cyclists, and I don't expect anyone would really object to young children riding their bicycles on the footpaths, it is in fact against the law. It can also, of course, pose a danger particularly to elderly pedestrians. While police officers frequently stop adults and young people who are cycling on the pavement and advise them, it is apparent that it is having little effect to reduce the problem locally. While nobody wants people to needlessly reported for offences, adults in the area should be aware that in future if police officers see them cycling on the footpaths and pavements, other than of course those designated as cycle paths, them they will be reported to the magistrates and might possibly be fined.

Inspector Palfreman of Avonmouth police station.

(With apologies to Inspector Paffreman as this letter was churned out with another by gremlins at the printing works last month/see page 9 of March issue.)

Shire On The Web

We are making good progress with our plans to create a Community Web Site for Shirehampton, on the World Wide Web. We are anxious to include links to any existing sites about the Village of people and activities in it. If your organisation has a web page, or you have got a personal homepage, we would be delighted to hear from you. Please ring David Thomas on 0177 982 2941, or email

Kingsweston Preservation Society

The Spring General Meeting will take place on Wednesday 17 March 1999, commencing 7.30p.m. at kingsweston school, Napier Miles Road.

There will be an illustrated talk 'THE FOREST OF AVON' by a visiting speaker from Ashton Court Centre, followed by coffee, and then a short society meeting on current local issues. Non-members are welcome at all our meetings, and we encourage anyone who shares an interest in the Kingsweston area to join our society.

St. Bernard's Parish News

Bristol Evening Post-Florida Vouchers

We have recently received £200 plus £300 Early Learning Centre vouchers as our prize for coming fourth in the Evening Post Florida Competition. Our reception class teacher has had a good look and has enjoyed putting together a big order. The Early Learning Centre gave us an additional donation of a painting easel.

Once again, thank you to everyone who collected vouchers on our behalf-it is always amazing the amount of support we receive in collections like this.

Daffodils on the Green

Many of you will have noticed the lovely display of daffodils on the Green. These were donated to Bristol City Council by the Port of Bristol Authority and it was arranged by Celia Lukins for the children of St. Bernard's to plant them.

This whole exercise has been valuable for the children-they have been involved in the whole process, from planting bulbs to seeing the shoots start to grow and now the flowers. This has given them practical experience of plant and life cycles, which is an area they are currently learning about, as well as making them think about ways that they can improve their local environment.


Mrs Auriel James, the founder of CHARITY SEARCH, which she started in Portview Road has been chosen as one of the recipients of MAUNDY MONEY to be handed out on Maundy Thursday, April 1st at Bristol Cathedral by the Queen.

Mrs James has kindly agreed to write about her experience of this honour, which we hope to print in the next edition of 'shire'. J.A.

Are You Here?

This photograph was taken probably in the late 1940's. It shows children and adults enjoying a performance by a magician at the old hall of the Grove Leaze Centre (University Settlement). The are wonderful expressions on the children's faces. Do you recognise yourself, or anybody else?

Please write in to tell us. The two ladies sitting together at the back of the picture on the left are Mrs. Glas Dando and Mrs Lilian Osman, and Michael Antill are sitting in the second row from the front.

Tel: 0117-982-4349

St Mary's News

Hi Folks,

Easter will be with us by the time you read these notes-Maundy Thursday is on the 1st of April & Good Friday the next day-when at 2.0pm Shirehampton area choir will be performing a modern cantata by Malcolm Archer (organist & choirmaster at Wells Cathedral) called Love Unknown. Tim Forder is conducting this work & we shall have guest Baritone & Soprano soloists. Easter Day services will be the same as for a normal Sunday. I love to see the Easter decoration of the church-I feel then that spring has really arrived.

Did you hear the Bishop of Bristol the other week on Radio Bristol programme 'Sunday starts'? He mentioned the millennium celebrations and the Jubilee 2000 project, which I touched on last month. He also mentioned-which I am sure will surprise many people that every Saturday in the UK during the season, 1 million people attend football matches, whereas on every Sunday throughout the year 6 million Christians attend church services on that day! It is not surprising when you look at our figures for the number of people coming into St. Mary's on weekday mornings-this now comfortably exceeds 4,000 in a full year! Don t let anyone kid you that Christianity is a thing of the past!

If you have attended St Mary's during recent Sundays you will have been aware of a change to the beginning of the service. It now commences with a prayer, after which the choir & clergy enter with the singing of the first hymn - which thus becomes a 'proper' introit. A worship group has been set up to see if any other changes are required. The first group meeting was attended by Tim Forder (organist & choirmaster)

Sandra Neale, Horace Dammers (former Dean at Bristol Cathedral) Gill Budge, June Miller, Steve Simmons & the Vicar- Fernly Symons. Please let these people know if you like or dislike any changes which take place - they are anxious to hear your views - better still, join them at one of their meetings!

Finally - Social Events - preliminary arrangements are in hand for two more skittles matches this year - one in May & the other in November, also Tim Forder is to yet again organise one of hid splendid car rally's in July - watch this space for details

Bye for now


Severnside Police & Community Consultative Group

The next meeting of the Group will be on Wednesday, 7 April, at Avonmouth Primary School, Catherine Street, Avonmouth, at 7.30p.m.

The Chief Constable of the Avon & Somerset Constabulary is hoping to attend the meeting. Members of the public are invited to attend and will have the opportunity to make comments on the policing of our areas.


Recalling 'The District Friends'

Nurse Catherine Court was the District Nurse of Shirehampton from 1903 to 1937. Always seen wearing her uniform, she earned for herself the title 'District Friend'. In 1937 Nurse Court decided to retire and tendered her resignation to Shirehampton District Nursing Association. The Committee received her letter with great surprise and horror. Mrs M.F. Gunning, the Honorary Secretary who lived at Bean Acre House, lower Shirehampton, did her utmost to persuade the Nurse to change her mind about retiring, but she did not, and then moved away. Shirehampton folk were determined to give her a lasting appreciation for all the loving care that she gave to the sick of the Parish over the many years that she had worked in their service. Miss Irene Base, Calligrapher & Illuminator of International repute, was invited to set down Shirehampton's appreciation in an Illuminated Address to present to the Nurse. Miss Base did just this, working on vellum which is calf's skin, the best material on which to write, of lasting qualities, practically indestructible and should last for Centuries. At the top of the Address Miss Base depicted Florence Nightingale, burnished in gold leaf, holding a lighted lamp in her left hand.

This Illuminated Address (above) was eventually inherited by Mrs. Conibear of Crewkerne, a granddaughter of the recipient, who recently decided that the Illuminated Address should be returned to Shirehampton for posterity and safe keeping. It is a splendid example of Miss Base's work and comparable with anything else she did. The colours are as bright and sparkling to day as when Miss Base wrote them, now over sixty years ago. Apart from now being an artefact of Shirehampton's history, the Address is a valuable piece of artwork. It would be appropriate if the address could be put on public view to be admired, but the problem is, where could it be staged to be safe. In addition, I am open to suggestions. Meanwhile the Parish should be most grateful to Mrs Conibear for her making this magnificent gesture.

Mrs Ethel Thomas
55 Cook Street
Bristol. BS11 9YJ.

Tel: 0117 9822738.

Obituary - Mrs Betty Pinnock 1918 - 1999

Betty was born in Bristol, went to school in Bedminster and had a younger brother, Howard and an older stepbrother, Kenneth, and she was very much the tomboy of the family. When she left school, Betty worked in the offices at W.D. and H.O. Wills, was always keen on sport and the great outdoors. She enjoyed swimming, cycling and camping together with Leonard, whom she married on the 11 May 1940.

Her children were very important to Betty, as were her grandchildren and great-grandchildren, of whom she was very proud.

For many years, she wrote a Nature Notes column in the SHIRE community newspaper, sharing with others her great love of nature. She was very enthusiastic about conservation, working as a volunteer for Avon Wildlife and campaigned with great energy for local causes that she felt strongly about - the in-tray in the City Engineer's Office should be slightly less full from now on!

Betty was a unique lady of great character and personality, who was kind, caring and who was ready to help others without intruding. She was always busy and was never bored, she had many interests and hobbies, including leather carving, spinning and weaving and embroidery. After Len died in 1983, the garden became very important to her and gave her a lot of pleasure growing flowers, herbs and soft fruit, in her own inimitable way. For the past ten years her two dogs became the focus of her life, and Betty made many good friends whilst taking them for their daily walk in the grounds of Kingsweston House. A fiercely independent woman, who when she was in her sixties could be seen up a ladder on scaffolding painting the eaves of the house. Whatever part Betty played in your life, you will all have an amusing story or incident to recall, followed by the comment 'Well, that was Betty'. She will be sadly missed by her family and all that knew her.

Station Road Playgroup

The children and staff at Station Road Playgroup have been delighted to receive the gift of a bead table (like the one in the doctor's surgery) from the Bristol Round Table. We are sure this will be much loved and used by all the children who attend.

Our grateful thanks to the Bristol Round Table for this donation and to Vicky Fisher for her efforts in securing it. Station Road Playgroup.

Stop Smoking Group

The next meetings of the Stop Smoking Group will be held on Tuesdays 6th, 13th, 20th and 27th April at the Lawrence Weston Clinic.

For further details, please contact Mike Davis at the Clinic on 9823205.

'That's Entertainment' Show Tickets Now On Sale

Tickets for Grainger Players Show in May, 'That's Entertainment' are now on sale (or to pick up those ordered) at Liz's Flower Shop in the High Street - Tel: 938 1332. Pre-booking has been high so there are only a limited number of tickets left for all nights. When the Show goes out on Thursday 20 May, it will be exactly 5 years since we put on the first show and the Grainger Players were born. This was not supposed to happen - I had only planned to do one Show to celebrate the 50th Anniversary of D.Day with a small group of local people who really hadn't been on stage before (except maybe 3 or 4). It was for fun and 3 community evenings, well the cast enjoyed it and didn't want to quit and the audience had happy evenings, so here we are 5 years later and we've had some wonderful community evenings and a lot of fun for the audience and ourselves.

Although it is hard work and commitment, at the end of the day it's worth it to see so many people going home happy and who had left their problems behind them for a few hours, and some of them even renewing old friendships.

That is really what the Grainger Players are all about - keeping community evenings and involvement going with everyone joining in and making it 'Their night'. The Show is on Thursday, May 20, Friday 21st and Saturday 22nd, commencing 7.15pm at the Public Hall, Station Road. Tickets are £3 adults, £2.50 senior citizens, £1.50 children. Preview night Thursday 20th, £1.50.

See you there - Shirl.

Lower Portway School Site

The latest information available to date as to the future possible development of the site, is that consideration is being given by Bristol City Council to the building of 39 semi-detached houses. It is understood that outline drawings have been submitted by Westbury Homes for the development, which would include a small play area for children. Consideration has also to be given to the availability of play areas for older children in the near vicinity. As the Council has refused planning permission for an Aldi store, the housing development would appear to be an acceptable alternative to the local residents and interested parties who have campaigned against the Aldi store.

Other Shirehampton residents may, of course, have other ideas. N.R.

Spring Greens!

Passing our Village Green daily on the way to the shops, it has been a pleasure to see it in bloom - daffodils amongst the grasses on one side and a colourful display of polyanthus on the other. A refurbishment of the fountain and a new plaque and fencing around the tree, have all added to the improvement of the area.

I understand that the bulbs were planted last November with the help of pupils from St. Bernard's Primary School in Station Road, apparently chosen to assist, as they were the nearest school to the Green.

Our thanks to Councillor Celia Lukins for providing the funding and arranging for the flower display, which I am sure, will be appreciated by Shirehampton residents and people passing by.

Shirehampton Choir Summer Concert

Rehearsals re-commence on Tuesday 27th April, in St. Mary's Church at 7.30pm. We have a good variety of songs for the choir and audience to sing along with, and it promises to be real fun event.

New and former members always welcome. Details available from Derek Harvey on 9836759.

Womens World Day Of Prayer

The members of St. Bernard's Mothers Union wish to thank all those who came on Friday, 5th March, to the service at St. Bernard's. Many thanks to all those who gave to the collection of £100.

Station Road Playgroup Bike Ride

One damp, cold morning in February, sixteen bike riders set off along the Portway on a sponsored ride for funds for the playgroup. Our thanks to you all, the Playgroup Committee, Mr. and Mrs. Moffat, Chloe, Mrs. Jewell, Mr. Harvey and Jade, who is only six and put us all to shame. Everyone had a smile on their face, particularly on the way back after we had been in the Nova Scotia for a warming drink or two!

All our aches and pains were worth it - it was fun. I will let you know how much money we raised.

Thank you. Barbara, Playgroup Leader.

P.'S. All 16 riders finished, some quicker than others!

Many Thanks From Doreen Hodge

I wish to say Thank you to my friends who sent me fruit, flowers, cards and good wishes during my stay in hospital, and even now that I'm home again. Thank you everyone. Doreen Hodge, St. Bernard's Road. (Many thanks for your donation to SHIRE funds).

Car Boot/Table Top Sale At Guide Hq

The above sale will be held on Saturday, 10th April, from 10am to 12 noon at Guide Headquarters, St. Mary's Road, Shirehampton, in aid of Headquarters funds. Telephone (0117) 9825970 to book a table/car boot @ £5 each.

L.Giles, Secretary.

Shirehampton Methodist Church Programme

Sunday April 4th EASTER DAY

11am Rev. Eric Maynard (former Minister)
6.30pm Rev. David Alderman (Communion)

Monday April 19th

2.30pm Women's Bright Hour
Anniversary - Speaker, Mrs. Audrey Standhaft.

Sunday April 25th

4.30pm Home Mission Anniversary
Speaker, Rev. William Cosens - International Seafarers Institute, Avonmouth
5.30pm Tea
6.30pm Rev. William Cosens


Public Hall Garden

I am exploring the possibility of redesigning the garden at the side of the Public Hall as a Millennium Project. If you are interested in tendering for the design or the work for this please get in touch with me as soon as possible.

Janet Thomas 0117 9822941

A Nonsense Poem

When the Lord gave out brains,
I thought he said 'trains'
And I missed mine!
When the Lord gave out looks,
I thought he said 'books'
And I didn't want any.
When the Lord gave out noses,
I thought he said 'roses'
And I ordered a big red one!
When the Lord gave out legs,
I thought he said 'kegs'
And I ordered two fat ones!
When the Lord gave out ears,
I thought he said 'beers'
And I ordered two long ones!
When the Lord gave out chins,
I though he said 'gins'
And I said - 'Give me a double!'

Oh Lord, I m in a mess!

Cotswold Community Centre Programme - April

Every Monday - except Easter Monday. Monday Ladies Club - 2.30 to 4pm. Every Thursday - Line Dancing Tuition 2 - 3pm followed by refreshments - tea, coffee or squash. Friday 30th April. Monthly sequence dance - 7.30 to 10.15pm.

Avon (University Settlement) Community Association

The annual general meeting of the above organisation will be held on 2nd June 1999 in the upstairs room of the public hall, station road, Shirehampton commencing at 7.15pm.

This long established local charity is seeking new members, either as individuals or as representatives of local community groups. If you are interested, please come along to our annual general Meeting or Telephone 0117 9824215 for further information.

Office address: 115 High Street, Shirehampton, Bristol. BS11 ODE

Shirehampton Towns Women's Guild Programme 1999-2000

Meetings are held at the Methodist Church Hall, Penpole Avenue (off High Street) on the first Thursday of each month at 7.30pm. Visitors are most welcome.

1st April I loved Prawn Cocktails Miss E. Leonard
6th May Artistry in Wool Mrs J. Thwaites
3rd June Aloe Vera Products Sally Wellman
1st July WI Markets Mrs Rowles
August No meeting - Guild Outing  
2nd Sept Sneed Park Nature Reserve Mrs Stonebridge
7th Oct Climbing in the Himalayas Peter Scott
4th Nov Connections Mrs J. Fey
2nd Dec Secrets of the Bayeaux Tapestry Mrs A. Bowring
7th January 25th Birthday Party  
3rd Feb Barefoot to Buckingham Palace Mrs Marshfield
4th March Annual General Meeting  

Obituary - Mrs Barbara Haley

It was with great sadness that the staff and pupils of Avon Primary School received the news of the death of Mrs Haley on 16 February. Mrs Haley joined the staff of Avon fifteen years ago and spent much of that time teaching junior aged children, moving to the Infant department in recent years.

Throughout her career, Mrs Haley dedicated herself to obtaining the highest standards of work and behaviour from her pupils. Her demand was great but so was her cares and concerns for the children.

Mrs Haley fought a long battle against cancer and many times returned to work, showing a level of commitment and energy, which disguised the degree of her health problems. The determination and courage shown by Mrs Haley over recent years can act as an example to all of us.

Governors, staff, parents and pupils will remember her with respect and admiration. A memorial seat will be placed in the school playground. Any past parent or pupil who would like to contribute to Mrs Haley's memorial can contact the school office (Tel: 9822915). Many Shirehampton children will have valued the contribution Mrs Haley made to their education whilst at Avon Primary.

D.W Jennings - Headteacher

Portway Musicians Go To School In Budapest

As an ongoing part of Portway Community School's foreign exchange programme, eight young musicians have been invited to join forces with the musicians from their partner school in Hanover and will jointly forge a new link with a school in Budapest, the capital city of Hungary. The Portway students who play trumpet, trombone, euphonium and bass tuba will be forming the brass section of the Hemmingen Big Band in this International Tour. They will fly to Hanover via Brussels, and will stay in Hanover for two nights with the families of the Big Band musicians, before travelling in one group to Budapest by coach. In Budapest, they will be going to school, giving concert performances and having time to do some sightseeing in Budapest. Before leaving Hanover for Budapest, the joint Big Band is performing at a concert organised by the Hanover end of the Bristol-Hannover Foundation. This is a council established in 1947, with the purpose of forming strong and reciprocal relationships between the two cities, both of which suffered appalling personal and structural damage during World War II. The relationship between Portway and its partner school Carl Friedrich Gauß Schule KGS Hemmingen can be seen as a perfect example of this ideal.

Portway Community School has been linked with KGS Hemmingen since 1996, during this time, eight exchanges have taken place including:

  • Portway Symphonic Band Tour (53 musicians) visit Hannover (x2) 96 and 97.
  • Hemmingen Theatre Group 96.
  • Portway German students work exchange visit 97.
  • Hemmingen English Lang. Students work exchange visit 97.

Hanover student musician (16) spends Autumn Term '98 at Portway. The Portway Symphonic Band is to make its third full tour of Hanover in June 1999 and has been invited to perform at the World Trade Fair EXPO 2000 next year. Two more German students also wish to spend more time at Portway, one for the Autumn Term 99 and one for the full academic year 99/2000.

Headteacher Nigel Astely, who has recently returned from establishing a school link in Beira City - Mozambique, said:

"We are very proud of Portway's links with schools from other parts of the world; we are enabling our students to form real friendships and a deep understanding of young people from different cultures that will last them all their lives … we go into the millennium as one world".

Christian Aid Week

May 9th - 15th 1999

Last year, Christian Aid week raised £10 million. The money goes to help more than 60 countries world-wide in their struggle for justice and sustainable development. House to house collections are still the most effective way to raise this money. We have some dedicated helpers but we need more.

If you could collect from just 20 houses near you, we need you! Please contact Brenda Dammers,

Christian Aid representative - Tel: 9829121

Super Badger Award

Congratulations to Amy Boucher of the Shirehampton Badger Sett, who recently won the highest award available to the youngest members of St. John.

The award represents the culmination of 21/2 years dedicated hard work, gaining all 9 proficiency badges which Badgers are able to work for, and was presented by the County Badger Leader, Mrs Rose Evans at a party held in Amy's honour.

As Amy has now reached the age of 11, she has moved on to the next group, so we wish her as much success at Cadets as she had at Badgers. Well done Amy! From Sett Leaders: Bob and Sharon and 11 of your friends.

Calling All Badgers!

Shirehampton Badger Set now has places available for new members aged 6-11 years (boys and girls).

We meet at the Beachley Walk Centre in Shirehampton, from 6-7pm on Tuesday evenings (subs: 60p).

If you would like to join the youngest branch of St. John and enjoy activities such as First Aid, craft, games and hobbies etc, please ask your parents to bring you along one Tuesday for a chat, or phone Sharon on 9826743 for more details.

We look forward to meeting to meeting you soon!!

Beachley Walk Playgroup

It is with much regret that Beachley Walk Playgroup will no longer take place due to the retirement of Angela Warren, who has gone into a new job with Social Services. Thank you to everyone who has supported Angela and us over the past 23 years.

Wordsearch No. 13

This month's Wordsearch puzzle contains seven words of the name of crafts.

Send your answers to WORDSEARCH NO.13

The Editor, SHIRE, The Library, Station Road, Shirehampton, Bristol, BS11 9TU, in a sealed envelope by the 10 April. The first correct entry opened will be awarded a prize to the value of £2.

The winner of last month's Wordsearch puzzle 10 spices was L. Dickar of Dursley Road. The answers were: MACE, VANILLA, GINGER, FENNEL, FENUGREEK, CUMIN, SEASAME, TURMERIC, CINNAMON.

Letters to the Editor

Portway School Site

Dear Editor,

I rode past the old site of Portway School this week and was shocked at the glass that was broken. Perhaps the person or persons that did this could explain what enjoyment they got out of doing it. As caretaker for a number of years I thought what an ideal home it would make for the elderly paid for with lottery money over and above the payment by residents for bed and board as recently suggested in discussing care for the elderly.

I would like to hear of other views on this.

W.J.L. Perhaps a community hospital? (Ed)

Revised Driving Test Alterations

On May 4th the revised driving test will be launched and apart from the fact that the fee will be increased from £32.75 to £36.75 other more important changes will be implemented. Candidates will be tested on a broader range of hazards, at higher speeds and on longer routes. The duration of the test is to be extended by seven minutes in order to implement these changes although a further three to five minutes will be gained by other alterations in procedure. At present a candidate may commit any number of minor driving faults without failing the test, but as from May 4 anyone incurring more than fifteen such faults will fail. Candidates will still be required to complete two of the three manoeuvres though the emergency stop will only be conducted at random in one in three tests.

Other alterations include the possibility of the reverse park exercise being carried out into a parking bay and the conducting of all the manoeuvres in the same locality instead of finding two separate areas as at present.

Future changes include the introduction of a driver's logbook and the computerisation of the theory test.

Diane Gait

Steam Train Timings

The Evening Post, who organised the steam train trips on the 20th and 21st March with Pathfinder's Tours, apologise for the changes in the timing of the trains when many of you missed seeing them on the Avonmouth line.

This was down to Railtrack who altered the times on several occasions, as special trains cannot take place when the timing conflicts with regular services. This also caused the Evening Post to have to write several times to ticket holders for the trips to alter the times. There is also another reason apparently, and that is that many steam train buffs have suicidal tendencies and place themselves on the line, over the line and hang themselves over bridges in order to get good photographs! A shrewd move in changing the times of the trains at the last minute is a good way to avoid this!!

Well, these days we all know never rely on the trains running on time! With apologies also from Shire, as many children waited in the cold for the trains that didn't arrive on time. Let's hope that some of you just happened to be passing when they did.

Shirehampton Directory

There are many community and leisure organisations in Shirehampton (over 70 at the last count). Five years ago, a Directory of all these organisations was published. Although this has been very useful for prospective new members to get in touch with organisations, it has not been updated for many years, and copies are very scarce. As part of its contribution to the SHIRE 2000 Millennium celebrations, Shire newspaper has decided to update and republish the Directory. We have already written to many organisations, requesting details of their activities for the Directory. However, there are almost certainly others of which we are unaware. If you are involved with a voluntary or community organisation of any kind in Shirehampton, and you have not heard from us, we would be delighted to hear from you and include you in the Directory. Please fill in the form below with details of the organisation. The most important items are the correct name of your organisation, and the name, phone number and contact address of the person you expect to be the initial point of contact for members of the publish wishing to make enquiries about your activities. The more information you can give about the other entries the better, but the contact details are vital.

You may know that Shire is proposing to set up a community Internet site, SHIRE ON THE WEB. We hope to include your directory entry on the Internet, where it can be updated whenever any details change. If you do not want details on the web, please tick the box provided.