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Back to November 2000 SHIRE December 2000 Fowards to January 2001 SHIRE
News Index

For Those Born Before 1940


What's on in December

Craft Exhibition

Spotlight On...

Happy Memories

Christmas Greetings and Good Wishes for 2001

Shire Administrative Committee send Christmas Greetings and best wishes for the year 2001 to all our readers, with special thanks to our advertisers, distributors and contributors, for their help and support in the year 2000. This year we have been asked to distribute the churches Christmas card with the 'SHIRE' to around 3,800 homes, as they have had difficulty in organising the distribution. We are very grateful therefore to our distributors for their support in delivering the cards on this occasion and thank them n behalf of St. Mary's, St. Bernard's and the Baptist and Methodist churches. We also extend the compliments of the season and our grateful thanks to those who help us stage 'Carols on the green' - especially the two bands, and those who organise and support us with both the art and craft exhibitions. With their help we hope to continue with these special events far into the future.

We also wish a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to te library staff and thank them for the excellent help which they continue to give us. Margaret Ellison has continued with her very valuable work in reading 'SHIRE' onto tapes for the blind and and partially sighted throughout the year, a service which is much appreciated in our neighbourhood. Very many thanks to Eric Verey who has supplied us with photographs of Shirehampton during 2000 for our use in the production of the 'SHIRE' calendar for 2001.

Greetings also to Les Grey whose illustrations have graced our calendars for many years. Unfortunately due to a period of ill health and lack of picture postcards of old Shirehampton, he has been unable to carry on the good work this year. We wish him a speedy return to good health and the drawing board!

On Friday 20th October Matthew Dear, Perry and Tom Kennedy were invested into the 191st St. Mary's (Shirehampton) scout troop. The ceremony took place in the scout headquarters, St. Mary's Road and the boys were welcomed in by the troop and parents.

Scouts meet at 7.30pm in te scout headquarters, St. Mary's Road every Friday evening. If you are interested, call in or phone the scout leader - Grant Watkins on 9380740

Charity Christmas Concert 2000

Due to additional commitments, St. Bernard's School ave had to withdraw from the concert this year. However, we are very lucky to have landed a big coup in the shape of The Singing Majorettes, who will be providing us with a short display and singing several songs. They are a group of local youngsters aged under ten upwards, who in their colourful costumes will, I am sure, provide us with something a bit different.

We also have Stephanie Woollard from Patchway singing some popular songs from recent years including 'Do they know it's Christmas?'. The Shirehampton choir have an interesting selection of items including 'Silver Bells', 'De Virgin Mary' and finishing on that old favourite 'Hallelujah Chorus'.

The concert is on Sunday 10th December in St. Mary's Church at 2.30pm. Admission is FREE, but there will be a collection in aid of The Avon Riding Centre for the Disabled.

See you there, Derek Harvey.

New Year's Eve Party at the Public Hall

Last years party was such a success for those of you who wanted to to spend new Year's Eve in friendly company rather than alone, that Shirl, Liz, Monica and Norman invite you to do the same this year. It's the same live music group and bring your own drink and nibbles - don't forget the glass - and if you are bringing children, then you'll be responsible to see that they don't chase about - no child did last year... It's relaxing fun, a community based evening and proceeds will go to the public hall fund. So why not join us - tickets are limited and entrance by ticket only - and we close the doors at 9.30pm.

Starting time is 8pm until just after midnight, so if you would like tickets they are available at 'Liz's Flowers' (next to the hairdressers) in the high street - 3 adults and 2 children.

Wishing a Happy New Year to you all.


For Those Born Before 1940

We were born before Television, before Penicillin, Polio shots, frozen foods, Xerox, plastic, contact lenses, videos, frisbees and the Pill. We were born before radar, credit cards, split atoms, and ballpoint pens; before dishwashers, tumble dryers, electric blankets, air conditioners, drip dry clothes - and before man walked on the moon.

We got married first and then lived together afterwards (how quaint can you get). We thought 'Fast food' was what you ate in Lent, a 'Big Mac' was an oversized raincoat and 'Crumpet' was for tea. We existed before househusbands, computer dating, dual careers, and when meaningful relationship meant getting along with your cousin, and 'sheltered accommodation' was where you waited for a bus.

We were before day care centres, group homes and disposable nappies. We never heard of FM radio, Tape decks, electric typewriters, artificial hearts and young men wearing earrings. For us, timeshare meant togetherness, a 'chip' was a piece of wood or a fried potato, 'hardware' meant nuts and bolts and 'software' wasn't a word.

Before 1940 'made in Japan' meant junk, the term 'making out' reffered to how you did in your exams, 'stud' was something that fastened to a collar on a shirt and 'going all the way' meant staying on a double decker bus to the bus depot. Pizzas, McDonalds and instant coffee were unheard of. In our day cigarette smoking was 'fashionable', 'grass' was mown, 'coke' was kept in the coal house, a 'joint' was a piece of meat you had on Sunday and 'pot' was something you cooked in. 'Rock music' was a grandmothers lullaby. 'Eldorado' was an ice-cream, a 'gay person' was the life and soul of the party and nothing more, while aids just meant beauty treatment or help for somebody in trouble.

We who were born before 1940 must be a hardy bunch when you think of the way in which the world has changed and of the adjustments we have had to make. No wonder we are confused that there is a generation gap today..... Now we do struggle to understand computer language, E-mail,w.w.w. dot com, Euros etc, Oh What a Headache!

But by the Grace of God, we have survived.

Profile...Rev David Alderman

David Alderman was born in kent but moved to Surrey in the late 1960's. After leaving college he spent over seven years in banking before taking up a position in the Methodist Overseas Division at the Methodists Church headquarters in London.

He has worked with many different people including Rev Donald Soper and Mr. Billy Graham in his London Rallies. After training at Queens Ecumenical College in Birmingham for the Methodist Ministry he took up appointment at Saltash, Cornwall. Here he was a minister to 5 rural churches and represented the Cornish Methodist Church in Overseas and Social issues. In 1997 he moved to Westbury park,Bristol and looks after Shirehampton, Westbury Park and Easter Compton Methodist Churches. He is a familiar face and with his puppets in many of the local schools in Shirehampton and Lawrence Weston.

Mr. Alderman is married to Anne, a teacher and they have three children, Stephen 10 years, Michael 8 years and Christopher 5 years. He enjoys camping and gardening and can often be seen cycling around Shire on his bicycle.

Dear Editor,

I have just read in today's Daily Mail about the concern of the Public Health Department of people not having their children vaccinated with MMR. If only people were reminded of a little known, but serious, fatal illness that can attack the brain after having measles years later and is a long drawn out killer like CJD.

My dear grandson died of it at the age of 14 years, 4 years ago after a log and distressing illness. It is called 'Sabacute Sclerosing Panencephalitis (SSPE) He had measles at the age of 14 months, the virus re-activated 10 years later and destroyed this healthy sports mad lad. Please warn people to protect children, to prevent an outbreak of measles. Measles is sometimes thought of as a simple childhood illness, but it can cause severe problems, either at the time or years later.

If there was a vaccination for CJD people would not need persuading to have it. SSPE is the same type of killer disease. Please protect your children

Mrs. Sheila Bubb.

Portway Carol Concert

Portway Community School Band will be playing at a carol concert at the Public Hall on 14th December at 6pm. Doors open at 5pm. Entrance fee 2 part of this will go to the band.

New Year's Eve Celebration

Tickets for the New Year's Eve celebration can be bought at the Public Hall

between 1pm and 4pm on Fridays

Christmas Fayre

Christmas Fayre at the Public Hall on 7th December - 10am - 1pm Various stalls.


The family of Mrs. Nell Green, who passed away on 10th October, 2000 would like to thank all relatives, friends and neighbours who sent cards and flowers. She was a lovely lady and will be missed by us all.

Dear Editor,

An acquaintance of mine phoned to say there was a Mr. Holyoak looking for Roland and Dorothy Witchell, who once lived in Shirehampton (November issue), but my husband is Ivor.

I am interested in family history as my husband had an uncle Roland. The family lost touch during the war when Ivor's father was lost at sea. I am enclosing a brief record of the family which I have traced back to 1800, and wonder if you would pass it on to Roland and Dorothy Witchell, if they are traced.

George Roland Witchell - Born Boreham, Nr Warminster, Married Mary Young - Born Boldre, Lyminton - 1870. They were married in Bristol in Feb 1894? and had 4 children.

Letter to Editor...

On Saturday, 21st October, 2000, I placed some fresh flowers in a patterned china vase, in the Garden of Remembrance at St. Mary's Church as a memorial to my young grandsons father. Checking with the children a couple of days later, to see if the flowers required more water, I was appaled to find the vase was missing and the flowers were therefore dead.My grandsons were very upset by this. Who could have done such a thing? I fid it difficult believing an adult would have been responsible for such a despicable act - maybe a child fancied the vase and took it home as a 'present' hae you acquired such a gift? if so, could you please return it to the garden of remembrance, and help restore some faith to my grandsons. Mrs. J. Williams.


Account of a trip to Canada by Librarian Marilyn Gorry. Saturday, 26th August, three ladies, who when young girls lived in Nibley Road - Edna Canby (Burt), Sylvia Shore (Wiltshire) and myself Marylin Gorry (Curtis), leaving our husbands at home, flew from Bristol to Toronto, Canada for a two week holiday, Staying with friends Iris Hawksby and her husband Gerald Sanderson.

Iris and Gerald were born in Shirehampton and have lived in Canada for 33 years. Iris lived in Corston walk, and after leaving Portway girls school, she worked for Morgans in Gloucester Road. Gerald lived in Portway Grove, and after leaving school went as an apprentice at the National Smelting Company. Iris and Gerald were married at St. Mary's Church on 28th March, 1959. on 12th July (after selling their home) and with two young sons, Richard 5 and Lawrence 21/2, they sailed from liverpool to Montreal, docking on 19th July. By train they travelled to Belleville, where they lived for 12 years. In 1972 they celebrated the birth of their third son, Dean. From Belleville they moved to Markam, just outside Toronto, a beautiful house with a swimming pool.This has been their home for 20 years. Iris and Gerald retired this year, they have recently bought another home in Florida, and will be spending Christmas there, returning to their home in Canada about March.

Iris and Gerald have visited family and friends in England many times. It was during their visit last year that we talked about our forthcoming birthdays.We all new that between September 1999 and January 2001 we would all be celebrating a very special birthday (guess which one). We thought we should do something very special hence the trip to canada. The first day we spent relaxing by the pool because of the long flight and the time difference of 6 hours.

On 28th August we flew from Toronto to Vancouver for a 5 day tour of the Rockies and Glaciers, two days by rail and three days by coach. The train The Rockie Mountaineer, left Vancouver at 6.15am and we had overnight stays in hotels in Kamloops and Jasper.

By coach we toured the icefields, went on a snowcoach on to the Athabasca Glacier, and visited Chateu Lake Louise. Then 2 nights at a hotel in Banff. On day one we went out on the boat on Lake Minnewanka, and on day two we went on the gondola up to Sulphur Mountain, through a snow blizzard to get to the top. On the final day we took a coach to Calgary and from Calgary we flew back to Toronto having enjoyed every moment. On the day we left Iris and Gerald took us to Niagra Falls, Unionsville, a very pretty town, and to Bracebridge to visit a cousin of my mother. Toronto itself was fascinating - we went up the CN Tower which is the tallest in the world. This is the one with the glass floor, the floor that very brave tourists walk on. 'No thank you' said Edna, Sylvia and Myself. Iris and Gerald did brave it. I did stand on the edge of the glass floor and looked down at the ground below, taking photographs, but not for long as I felt quite dizzy.

The holiday was wonderful, we flew back to England on 9th September, and we are still talking about it. Last month Iris and Gerald flew from Toronto to Italy to visit their son Dean and his family. From Italy they flew to England where we all met up exchanging our photographs. A visit to England again next year is possible and Iris and Gerald would like to see other friends. I am sure there are quite a few who still live in Shirehampton or not far away. I know of a few. Perhaps you could contact me through 'Shire' at the Library. Iris and Gerald would be so pleased Marilyn

Many thanks to your donation to 'SHIRE' - Ed.

What's on in December

december 1st & 2and Friday and saturday CHRIST-MAS COMMUNITY GET TOGETHER WITH GRAINGER at the Public Hall, 7.15pm Adults 3, OAPs 2.50 and Children 2 December 1st and every Friday BINGO at the Public Hall. Doors open at 6.15pm start at 7pm.

December 3rd Sunday EVERGREENS TRIP to Chepstow Market & Christmas lunch. Bus leaves at 9.30am.

December 3rd Sunday ADVENT TOY SERVICE 11am at the Methodist Church.

december 4th and every Monday AVONMOUTH LADIES HOCKEY TRAINING 7pm - 8.30pm at Gordano School, Portishead.

December 5th Tuesday LOCAL COUNCILLORS available for consultation at 7.30pm at Jim O'Neil House. december 5th Tuesday St. Andrews LADIES CLUB meets at St. Andrews Church Hall, Avonmouth at 7.30 pm for their CHRISTMAS PARTY.

December 6th Wednesday every week EARLY MORNING SWIM at SHIREHAMPTON BATHS. 7am-9am.

December 6th Wednesday ARTHRITIS CARE meetat 7.30pm at the Public Hall. December 6th & 8th Every Wednesday and Friday,DROP IN SESSIONS for advice at the A.U.S Cottage (Next door to Twyford House), High Street, 9.30am-11am. December 6th Every Wednesday POLICE SURGERY at the Methodist Church Hall, Penpole Ave 9am-11am.

December 7th Thursday Melanie-AMERICAN TEA DANCE at sea mills Methodist Church Hall. 2.30pm-4,30pm December 7th Thursday TOWNSWOMANS GUILD meets at 7.30 at the Methodist Church Hall, Cinematic Stories with Mr. W. Knight.

December 7th Thursday every week LINE DANCING at the COTSWOLD COMMUNITY CENTRE 2pm-3.15pm. Admission 2 per session.


December 9th Saturday CHRISTMAS FAYRE 10am-1pm at the Public Hall - Table 5 to book ring 982-3180

december 10th Sunday Shirehampton CHOIR CHRISTMAS CONCERT at St. Mary's Church at 2.30pm Admission free, there will be a collection

December 19th Tuesday RAILWAY MODELLERS at the Public Hall at 7.30pm

December 20th Wednesday WOMEN'S INSTITUTE meets at the Methodist Church Hall for their CHRISTMAS PARTY at 7.30 pm

December 20th Wednesday SHIREHAMPTON STITCHERS meet at 7.30pm in the Public Hall

December 20th Wednesday HAPPY HEARTS WEST meet at 7.30pm at the Beachley Walk Centre


December 24th Sunday CHRISTMAS EVE CAROLS ON THE GREEN Please bring the carol sheet from th middle of this issue of 'SHIRE' and a light with you. If fine we shall meet on the Green, otherwise it will be in St. Mary's Church starting at 7.30pm

December 29th Friday SEQUENCE DANCE at the Cotswold Centre 7.30pm - 10.30pm

December 31st Sunday NEW YEAR'S EVE PARTY at the Public Hall 8pm - midnight bring all your own snacks and drinks. Adults 3, Children 2.Admission by ticket only. Tickets obtainable from Liz's Flowers, High Street Doors Close at 9.30pm.

Craft Exhibition

24-28th October, 2000

Once again the Annual Craft Exhibition was held in the Public Hall during the half-term holiday week. Until the entry forms have been submitted we have no idea what to expect. The exhibition is open to local residents, or those who attend classes in  he area. When all the exhibits arrived there was a great variation, and, as the public expressed, something different each year. One corner of the hall was taken over by Dick Helme and entitled 'Homesteaders Corner'. This was an authentic reconstruction of a wild west room, containing a bed, rocking chair, carver chair, table, pig-bench, also numerous artefacts. All the woodwork and furnishings were made by Dick, except the patchwork quilt, which was made by Gail Amphlett. The two rugs were peg-loomed and made from the wool of a Jacob Sheep. Dick gave a demonstration to show how this was done. Claire Pimm was there again, spending her half-term school holiday demonstrating her skill at Pergamano, with extremely professional results. Various other demonstrations also took place during the week. The patchwork quilts were displayed all round the hall and were all beautiful many hours of work. The quilt made by Mary Parsons was particularly eye-catching thirty squares, all different, in various shades of green. There were many cross-stitch and tapestry pictures, including lots of animals. This year we did not have as many large exhibits, but I am sure there were a lot more smaller ones. One table was covered with knitted toys, another with other small crafts including some intricate lace. The Rainbows, Brownies, Guides and Cubs also took part in the Exhibition. The flower pots decorated by the Rainbows were delightful, but all their efforts were noted by the public.

Last, but not least we must thank the ladies who provided the refreshments, tea, coffee and home-made cats, much appreciated by the visitors. Now it is all over we have to start thinking about next year. I am sure that there are still many people in Shirehampton who do craft work, but do not consider it good enough to put on show. I am sure it is, and remember we cannot carry on with these exhibitions without your help. If you cannot sew we are always glad of your help in setting up the Exhibition and stewarding. Don't forget, it will not seem long before it all comes round again.


To visit the Virtual Craft Exhibition, click here.

Spotlight On...

Rosemary Clarke, local resident, is a Non Executive Director on North Bristol NHS Trust. We thought you would like Rosemary to tell you about her work.

Can you tell us a little about yourself?

I live with my partner Phil in Shirehampton not more than a mile or so from where I spent my childhood. I have nineteen years community, voluntary and trade union experience. I am currently a Trustee of Frenchay and Southmead Care Trust, a charity that has many residential homes including the one my Dad lives in as he has Alzheimer's disease. In addition I am a governor of two schools, treasurer of In Touch (a counselling service for adults), a Women's Advisor for Bristol City Council and a member of employment tribunals. I did serve as a Bristol City Councillor and a member of Avon and Somerset Police Authority.

How did you become a Non Executive Director?

In mid 1997 I completed an application form and put together some additional information to support my application. I was then interviewed by a panel and having successfully passed the first hurdle I was then put on a list of approved potential Non Executive Directors. I was then asked to have an informal meeting with Professor Silver, who was the Chair of Southmead Health Services Trust. Much to my satisfaction I was invited to serve as Non Executive Director on the Board of the Trust, which was exactly what I wanted. In November 1997 I was appointed a full member of the Board. In early 1999 I had to repeat the process as, due to the merging of the two Trusts to become North Bristol NHS Trust, Southmead Health Services Trust would no longer exist. I was offered and accepted an invitation to serve as Non Executive Director on the Board of the new North Bristol NHS Trust that covers both Southmead and Frenchay.

What particular areas have you been involved with during the past three years?

From the start I was asked to take on the role of Convenor for the NHS complaints procedure. This means I have been responsible for overseeing the Trust's response to a number of complaints from patients on various issues, not all relating to their treatment whilst in hospital. I have taken a particular interest in equal opportunities and induction for new members of staff. I trained to be a Mental Health Act Manager, which involved chairing panels to hear patient's appeals against detention. Currently I am the chair of the Clinical Governance Committee and a member of the Audit Committee. I have chaired appointment committees for consultants, staff grades and an executive director.

What aspects of the work do you like most?

As a Non Executive Director I work alongside four other Non Executives, our Chairperson, Chief Executive and senior managers as an equal member of the board. Being able to contribute my skills and my personal experiences to try to improve the services offered by the Trust gives me the greatest satisfaction. I frequently remind the Board that, as the meetings are open to the public, all papers presented have to be made simpler because otherwise many people will not know what is going on. Odd as it may sound, most of the time I enjoy my work on complaints. Not having a health service background can be an advantage as I bring a more independent view to the issues involved.

How much time does this all take?

The job description I have states 'three days a month'. I reality the time varies from month to month depending on the number of complaints I am handling and amount of time I spend preparing and attending meetings.

The trust Chairperson and Non Executive Directors represent the general public and are independent members of the Board, we hold the Executive Directors accountable for their work with the Trust. Changes in the way Non Executive Directors are appointed are currently being discussed. Anyone interested should contact the NHS Executive on 0117 984 1750.


Cub Scouts News

Cub Scouts 'crossing the bridge' to become Scouts, at the induction held in the Scout Hut on Friday 20 October 2000. Matthew Dear, Perry and Tom Kennedy were invested into the 191st St Maty's (Shirehampton) Scout Troop.

Photo: E Verey

Library News

As many of you will be aware the library office was broken into early in October, with two members of the staff having their handbags stolen. We would like to take this opportunity to thank all who expressed their sympathy, especially Rosemary Clarke for her card. On a much brighter note, after the popularity of our Christmas Coffee Morning last year, we have decided to hold one again this year, on Friday, 22nd December from 10.30-12.30, when once again we will be asking local groups to provide displays/demonstrations. Anyone willing to provide a demonstration, give us some assistance on the day, or donate a raffle prize will be gratefully received. Please contact us at the library, or on 9822184.

The staff would like to thank you all for your support throughout the last year and wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. We look forward to seeing you in 2001.

Eileen and staff.


Saturday, 23rd December: 10am-1pm, 2pm-4pm
Monday, 25th December: CLOSED
Tuesday, 26th December: CLOSED
Wednesday, 27th December: 10am-1pm, 2pm-5pm
Friday, 29th December: 10am-1pm, 2pm-5pm
Saturday, 30th December: 10am-1pm, 2pm-4pm
Monday, 1st January: CLOSED
Wednesday, 3rd January: 10am-1pm, 2pm-5pm

Christmas Messages

Gwen Evans of Stow House would like to wish her family, friends and neighbours a Happy Christmas and a Bright New Year. Thank you for your donation to Shire.

Seasons Greetings to all our Friends. See you in the Spring. Grace and Ed. Butchers. From: 214 Bering Avenue, Toronto, Canada.

Happy Memories

Shirehampton, near Avonmouth The Bristol Channel Port with a number 28 bus service to Bristol...

The first council estate of the district was a nicely arranged happy place to live and the streets around a green were The Bean Acre, Kingsweston Avenue and Old Quarry Road, set amidst lovely surroundings.. The Kingsweston Estate, Penpole Hill, fields, coppices and old quarry workings overgrown and beautiful with scattered rocks ideal for picnic tables and hide and seek. At the back of our house was the lane leading to Penpole Point the scene of many a game of Robin hood, Oberon and Titania, cowboys and Indians and lots of rolypolys. Rocky shelves made wonderful thrones amidst banks of yellow rock roses and secret places where sweet scented white violets grew. Beech nuts and conkers to gather in the Autumn. We would play for hours and could watch for a handkerchief signal from mothers at the back door to signal when meal times were ready.

In those days there seemed to be such a trust out parents allowed us to wander into the fields and lanes and all our adventurous imaginings with complete freedom. There were ponds to explore for newts, tadpoles and minnows and lots of ditches and rhines with crossover planks to negotiate but there seemed to be no fear that we could come to harm. There were hay fields with moondaisies and corn fields with poppies, we loved the wild flowers so much and could pick bunches of them... I remember saying that when I got married I would have a bunch of wild flowers. The High Street of Shirehampton was flanked by distinctive Manor Houses and I seem to remember a Courtyard Manor House opposite the Church where later a fish and chip shop, a chemist, a drapers etc. were. I would love to know who lived in these dignified houses but I can only remember the wonderful May festivals we had in one of the grounds with the procession and the crowning of the May Queen and prizes for children in fancy dress and decorated bicycles. I had the glory of crowning the May Queen and a banner with the 'HOPE' was tied across my small body. It was the first time I had ever worn stockings and I remember how wrinkled they were over my knees, but I was very proud as I travelled in the procession for the very first time in a motor car.

I remember with great affection a dear lady called Miss Rotha Mary Clay who was the Warden of the University Settlement in Shirehampton which was a wonderful community service for adults and children and seemed to organise all the various events of the village... for it was a village and a beautiful one with the village green and water fount. Another affectionate memory is of Miss Jefferies the Leader of the Brownies and the Guides where we learnt so many interesting things.

We used to fetch our groceries from Embleys Stores which was a wooden building attached to their cottage, opposite 'The Bank'. I can still feel the floorboards under my feet and imagine the counter with bottles of sweets 2ozs a penny. My favourite pocket money buys were lunch bags with broken biscuits, locust beans, popcorn and suchlike in them also small crinkly nuts called monkey nuts. When buying vinegar it was wonderful to be naughty and suck the cork and how lovely to nibble at the corner of a crusty loaf. Thinking of brad reminds me of the village baker Dump Harris. When the Severn Beach Lido was opened he was a wonderful comic attraction as a Laurel and Hardy twosome. The Lido was a very popular day out, a cycle ride through Avonmouth and St. Andrews Road or a train ride from Shirehampton. The Fairground and the Swinging Boats added to the fun.

Mrs Dorothy Wookey (nee Thomson)
Milton Gardens
Oxland Lane
Burton, nr Milford Haven
Pembs SA73 1LG


John Gilbert
Ruffy Road
Longwood 3665
Victoria, Australia.


Dear Sir/Madam

I am conducting research into my descendants who hailed from your part of England. George GILBERT, an itinerant farm worker was born at Shirehampton in 1807. He married Elizabeth FORD at Midsomer Norton in 1837. He departed for Australia in 1857 aboard the clipper 'Wildranger' with his sons William Ford (born East Brent 1839), young George (born Bristol 1847), daughters Emily (born 1837) and Annie (born 1845). George had two sisters who were also born in Shirehampton, Sarah (born 1803) and Susan (born 1813). Their parents, William GILBERT and Honor(a) THOMAS were known to be around Shirehampton in the 1770s. Sarah and Susan married locally and stayed.

It is know that the GILBERT'S are related to these families GINGELL, FILER, OSMAN, GARRETT, HALE, PATEMAN and BRITTON. I am seeking to make contact with people who may be related. A GILBERT Reunion will be held 31st August, 1st and 2nd September 2001 at Alexandra, Victoria, Australia all welcome. A book of the Gilbert Family History will be unveiled at the gathering.

Could you please share my request with your readers, who maybe interested to know that there are hundreds of GILBERT Australians, descended from the original George.

Yours faithfully



Joan Cormack
11 Stow House
Nibley Road
BS11 9UY

Tel: 0117 9828068

27th October, 2000

Dear Members and Friends of Shirehampton Baptist Church, on the behalf of the residents of Stow House. We wish to thank you so very much for your kind thoughts in donating gifts of fruit and pens, which were appreciated by the residents.

Joan Cormack
Resident Warden

Shire Stitchers - Millennium Quilt

Many people worked on this quilt to celebrate the Millennium in Shirehampton.

The design is based on a map of the village, divided into sections by highlighting some of the roads. Can you recognise which they are? People chose which section they wanted to work on, so you will see a variety of interpretation of different parts of Shirehampton. Applique, piecing, hand and machine embroidery and quilting have all been used. Together with a range of plain and printed fabrics, some of which were hand dyed, this gives a rich and interesting result.

The quilt is intended as an historical record, indeed some features have already become history since we started work on the quilt a year ago. Can you spot them? The progress of the work has been recorded on photographs and the details will be recorded on a national record of needlework for the Millennium.

The quilt is now hanging in the public library, so you can have another look at it and tell your friends.

Canon John Burnett Golden Jubilee

A service of rejoicing and thanksgiving to mark the fifty years of Canon Burnett's ordination to the Priesthood will take place at St. Albans Parish Church, Westbury Park on Saturday, 16th December at 10.30 a.m. The preacher will be the Right Revd. Barry Rogerson, Bishop Bristol.

Canon Burnett was Curate of Shirehampton 1949-1953.

Last Chance

There are still a few Millennium Tea Towels available for those special Christmas presents. Also some attractive postcards showing the Victorian Fountain on the Green.

Tea Towels 2.50; Cards 25p. Contact: Janet Thomas 9822941.

Shirehampton Methodist Church

Sunday, 17th December: 4.00 p.m. Carols by Candlelight Rev. David Alderman Christmas Day: 11 a.m. Rev. David Alderman
Sunday, 7th January: Family Service Rev. David Alderman
Sunday, 14th January: 11.00 a.m. Covenant Service Rev. David Alderman