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What's On in March

St Mary's News

The F.A. Cup comes to Shirehampton

Our picture shows the St Bernard's School Football Team with the Axa Sponsored F.A. Cup, but of course we have to admit that they did not actually win it! The team have only recently been formed and they play in the South Glos. Football League for under 10s, but at least they now know what it feels like to be near the world-famous trophy which every schoolboy footballer dreams of winning one day.

Photo: E Verey

Congratulations are due to the Friends of St Bernard's School for arranging this event at the school on Saturday 12th January, when anyone could attend and be photographed with the trophy. The Football Association and Axa Insurance, the sponsors, encourage this type of promotion of the F.A. Cup at grass roots level and rate it as equally important as the many more lavish functions where the trophy is displayed. Some of the names of the winning teams engraved on the cup wouldn't mean much to the younger generation in terms of our footballing heroes of the past, and can they ever imagine what it was like to be glued to the radio on a Saturday afternoon to listen to the commentary on the Cup Final, followed by the dash for the Green 'un or Pink 'un to read all about it, and then to the cinema the following week to see the pictures on British Movietone News. Nowadays of course it is all live on TV with endless instant replays of all the goals, but it is still a thrill when your own county team beats one of the top-notchers and earns the title of "giant-killer". Oh the magic of The Cup, and long may it continue.


Bristol Local Education Authority has decided that a Post 16 facility at Portway Community School is no longer financially viable!

This is no longer just a proposal; a decision has been made to transfer all Portway's post 16 pupils to Ashton Park School. We propose to keep them at Portway Community School! Our children are expected to travel to and from a consortium of schools in the South-West of Bristol to continue their studies. This is not a realistic option and many if not all pupils would quite rightly refuse to do so.

It is correct that Mr Neil Sykes Head of Portway has managed to persuade the LEA in respect of an intake for post-16 this September. But it is now up to everybody involved to come up with an acceptable alternative for future years within the next 6 months. The L.E.A. is certainly not going to put itself out, as far as it is concerned the decision has been made. This has been proven by all of the communication we have received from the L.E.A. We are trying to work with various agencies to put together an acceptable package for future post-16 pupils. We still need ongoing support from all parents, relatives and possible mature students or the L.E.A. will ride roughshod over us. If parents had not attended a very poorly advertised meeting last year and spoken up, there would not have been an intake this September. Please do not be lulled into a false sense of security.

The Bristol Local Education Authority states that it wants to encourage more pupils to return to schools within Bristol. This action will inevitably make more children attend schools outside the Bristol borders and will certainly not improve the numbers staying on to progress to Bristol's universities.

We as representatives of the "Parents Action Committee for Post-16 at Portway" would welcome any comments or letters of support. We hope to have boxes stationed at various shops in the village for these soon. You can also e-mail us on If you should wish to write to Doug Naysmith our M.P. or Pat Roberts our Local Councillor please include your name and address. There will also be an open public meeting in the near future at the school. Watch this space for details!


The Parents' Action Comm.

What's On in March

March 1st: Friday WOMEN'S WORLD DAY OF PRAYER Service, Shirehampton Methodist Church, 2.30pm
March 1st: Friday and every Friday FRIDAY FUN at the Beachley Walk Centre for Parents/Carers and Pre-School Children, 9.30am-11.30am
March 1st & 6th: Every Friday and Wednesday, "DROP-IN SESSIONS" for advice at the Avon University Settlement Cottage, High Street, next door to Twyford House, 9.30am-11.30am
March 1st: Friday MONTHLY COFFEE MORNING at the Library 10.30am-12.30pm
March 1st: Every Friday BINGO at the Public Hall start 6.30-8.30pm. Contact N. Sims 9823180
March 2nd: Saturday STAMP FAIR at the Public Hall, 9am-4pm
March 4th: Monday-Friday March 8th both dates inclusive every week AFTER SCHOOL CLUB at the Public Hall during term time, for details ring Alison Aitchison 9829963.
March 4th: Monday and every Monday, SEQUENCE DANCING, 7.15-9.15pm at the Public Hall. Contact Myra Jenkins 968 6526
March 4th: Monday, ARTHRITIS CARE GROUP meet at Jim O'Neil House
March 5th: Tuesday, St. Andrew's LADIES CLUB meets at 7.30pm in St. Andrew's Church, Avonmouth
March 6th: Wednesday every week COFFEE MORNING at the Methodist Church Hall
March 7th: Wednesday EARLY MORNING SWIM at Shirehampton Baths, 7am-8am and 8.30-9.30am
March 8th: Thursday TOWNSWOMEN'S GUILD meets at 7.30pm at the Methodist Church Hall for ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING
March 14th: Thursday TEA DANCE at Sea Mills Methodist Church Hall, 2.30pm-4.30pm with DAVE MOREY 1.
March 19th: Tuesday St. Andrew's LADIES CLUB meet at 7.30 at St. Andrew's Church Hall, Avonmouth, BRING & BUY - CHARITY NIGHT
March 19th: Tuesday RAILWAY MODELLERS at the Public Hall at 7.30pm
March 20th: Wednesday WOMEN'S INSTITUTE at the Methodist Church Hall, 7.30pm to hear Mrs Olga Rogerson "Life with a Crook"
March 20th: Wednesday SHIREHAMPTON STITCHERS, 7.15-9.15pm at the Public Hall
March 20th: Wednesday HAPPY HEARTS WEST meet at 7.30pm at the Beachley Walk Centre
March 28th: Thursday TEA DANCE at the Methodist Church Hall, Sea Mills 2.30pm-4.30pm 1 with John Hutton
March 29th: Good Friday Library is closed

Forthcoming Event:

April 25th, 26th, 27th Thursday, Friday & Saturday "GOLDEN COACH" by the GRAINGER PLAYERS at the Public Hall 7.15pm, tickets 2 Thursday, but Friday & Saturday 2.50 OAPs, Adults 3.


During February to join the 'Shire' in celebrating its thirtieth birthday we had a display of the front page of each of the February editions. These were taken from the bound archives of the paper that are kept in the library.

The archives are available for anyone to browse through - though we do ask that you treat them as the unique historical documents that they are. There has also been a lot of interest in the plans for the development of the Savoy site displayed in the library.


Yes - theft - not sale. Someone was loading up the boot of his car, went back to the shop for the next load, returned to the car only to see the first lot being carted up the road by a young man who had deftly removed it. So beware, don't leave the boot open. If there's anything worth pinching it will be, especially if it's left on view. Yes, this did happen in Shirehampton, the victim is still absolutely amazed at the nerve of the thief. And a reminder, never have your purse on top of your shopping.

Joyce Daniels, Secretary and Advertising Manager, Jean Archer, Chairman of SHIRE, Marion Robathan, Vice Chairman, with the plaques awarded to them by the Committee for their long service to SHIRE.
Photo: E Verey

ST. ANDREW'S LADIES' CLUB - Future dates:

5th March Bristol Pottery
19th March Bring and Buy Auction Charity Night
2nd April Gardening with herbs 16th April Sundials, Mr. Routley
7th May Trill & Spill of a church organist
21st May Call My Bluff
4th June Summer outing
18th June Bristol, then and now
2nd July To be arranged
16th July AGM, American supper



10th March Mothering Sunday, 11am. Family Service with Rev. David Alderman 6.30pm. visit of the Bristol Evangel Choir, a warm welcome is extended to all.
17th March Passion Sunday, 11am. Rev. Edward Standhaft MA (Victoria, Whiteladies Road)
31st March Easter Day 11am. Valerie Flint Johnson with Rev. David Alderman. (Easter Communion)


The Forum held its third meeting on 29 January at Shire Public Hall, and continues to go from strength to strength, maintaining high levels of support from present organisations, and successfully attracting other agencies and organisations to work toward addressing the issues raised in the Community Profile.

The sub groups meet monthly and here is a brief note of what they are doing:-

Housing Sub Group: They have put together a questionnaire for all residents living on the Ridge, and is organising a meeting for all residents to attend on March 14th at Penpole Tenants Association, between 4-6pm.

Youth Sub Group: This group is also conducting a detailed questionnaire with young people, and has benefited from good partnership working with Portway Community School. The group continues to work toward setting up a Cafe for the young people of Shire.

Community Safety Forum: The questionnaire on Community Safety that appeared in The Shire before Christmas, received only 13 replies, there are many conclusions that can be drawn from this very low response ... one, might be that there are no problems around community safety/law and order in Shirehampton!

However, judging by the latest figures available - this is obviously not the case. The Forum would very much like to hear people's views and concerns. The Forum is looking into applying for funding to have a professional crime audit survey conducted in Shire. We'll keep you posted.

If you would like more information about the Forum, or the work of the sub groups, please contact Ash Bearman, Community Development Officer at Shire Public Hall on 982 9963.

Ash included a table of results, which unfortunately we do not have room to print but the main concern was for the lack of a police presence and for law and order. Ed.

Charlie Frederick Palin & Pat Palin

My name is Alec Roberts and I am trying to find information on my Aunty and Uncle who lived in the Shirehampton area. Their names were Charles Frederick Palin (possible known as Charlie Palin) and Pat Palin. Their one time address was 201 Mancroft Avenue, Lawrence Weston, Bristol.

I believe that Charlie Palin passed away in the early 1970s and Pat Palin passed away in the late 1970s or early 80s. Information has led me to believe that they were both buried in Shirehampton. I would dearly love to find their final resting place. As our family lost contact over 30 years ago I hope someone in the area may have some information. My Aunty Pat had a sister named Janet and her husband was Fred (surname unknown). If anyone has any information would they be so kind as to contact me.

Alec Roberts, 1 Alyn Close, Pandy, Wrexham, LL11 2YH Tel: 01978 359304 (Wrexham, North Wales) Email:


Thanks to Network North Bristol, (part of UK OnLine), we now have a computer on line which is available for you to use. Or in fact if you need a computer to word process on or whatever, you are welcome to use ours. It's usually available between 12pm and 3pm Mondays to Thursdays in term times, and any time Mondays to Thursdays in school breaks. But please phone first (Kate on 982 9963), to arrange your time, as it or the room may already be booked. We make a small charge of 30p per sheet printed out just to cover the costs of paper and ink cartridges, but otherwise use of the computer is free.


Avonmouth Ladies' Hockey Club has for several years run a Mini and Junior hockey section for young people ages 7-14 years.

Our Mini hockey section runs out of St Bernard's school Station Road, Shirehampton on Tuesday nights from 6.30 p.m. - 7.30 p.m. during the winter and spring school terms. The mini hockey section provides opportunities for young girls and boys to learn hockey skills under the instruction of a level 1 hockey coach and play short mini hockey games. All this is provided with the intention of making hockey a fun sport that encourages team participation and a sense of fair play. As our mini players get older we start to involve them with the junior section that tends to start at 11 years and some of our more experienced mini hockey players join our junior for Sunday games. We currently have spaces for more players to join our mini and junior sections and would welcome anyone to come and try hockey for a night. We work hard to keep our costs as low as possible and if you wish to join our mini or junior sections we ask for a weekly subscription of 1 and as much support as possible for any fund raising events that the coach dreams up.

If you wish to know any more about Avonmouth Mini or Junior Hockey Sections please ring me Jan Wilson on 0117 9828039.


GOING FREE  The Public Hall has a sheet of plasterboard, size 3'11" x 7'10" which is surplus to requirements! If you can use it please give Kate a ring on 982 9963 to arrange to collect it.

OPEN TO OFFERS - The Public Hall also has a considerable heap of dressed stone - the same as the Hall is built with! So it's very suitable for local building work of any kind. If you are interested in coming to see it, please ring Kate on 982 9963.


Summer's coming, don't forget to check those passports. Remember that very often there must be anything up to six months beyond the date of your return left to run on your passport. Better safe than sorry, do it now before the passport office gets inundated.

Memories of 'The Savoy'

Dear Editor

As a scruffy, but well scrubbed eleven year-old, I stood each day, open mouthed, watching this enormous new building taking shape, a cinema, Shire was going to have its own cinema..this was so exciting and the topic everywhere, even in each classroom of the newish Portway school, alas.

And what an opening, breathtaking more squeezing into the Avonmouth - warmly called - 'Bug-hutch' and being squirted with 'Flit' by the able Mrs Walsh the owner...this was 'THE SAVOY'

At this time I was living in Bradley Crescent, not far was my father's shoe shop. My closest friends the three Newman boys..their Dad was the butcher and Alec Dunlop and I were so anxious for our first visit, entrance fee 6 pence, not cheap..and even if one had the funds the barrier of being under 16 had to be overcome. The phrase 'will you take me in please sir' filled the air, even as far back as the library one was forced to start pleading to beat the enthusiasts. (I just mention Bradley Crescent at this point in time..they had the most wonderful street party to celebrate King George's Jubilee..tables all the way down the middle..every house was joined with flags and coloured streamers.. community togetherness at its best, I cherish the moment).

The reluctance of some to take on this responsibility was difficult to understand, most of them only had their girl-friend with them, and we only wanted to sit by them, oh the innocence of wonder getting into our Savoy was not easy.

Life was not always disheartening..and one occasionally struck oil when they were smoking, especially Kensitas..the plea turned to, 'can I have your cigarette card sir?' another memory..My first memorable film was no less than 'Saunders of the River' with Paul Robeson, I can still hear that 'Sandy the wise, Sandy the strong' booming out...I managed to get in on the first performance, 12.30 am but unfortunately the film had started.. so when it came around to when my escort had seen the completed programme and left...I was too thrilled to go, and stayed, this I managed to do by hiding under the seat until the finale and God save the King...the time was now 11.15pm and the house on my return was full of father had deemed his son missing.

But now..Portway school's the Savoy.. Dear-o-dear

Vic Wiltshire....

Dear Editor

I remember it well, my wife and I decided to go to the Savoy, we lived in Hallen then so it was an evening out. The film we saw was 'Bridge On The River Kwai'. I remember it was about August 1958, we were expecting our first child. What made us both laugh was when the film ended my wife had trouble getting out of her seat owing to her size. As it happened our first daughter was born in September. Happy days at the Savoy. It's a pity it's gone.

Yours sincerely,

B. Rowles.

Re-St. Bernard's Centre

Dear Editor

I feel I must reply to the letter featured in your February edition by A. Bollen as some of the views were at best fanciful and at worst totally factually incorrect. With this in mind I would like to raise the following points.

1. The meeting did not 'degenerate into a shouting discourse'. I recently spoke with our M.P. Dr Doug Naysmith, who chaired the meeting, who agreed with me that this was a totally unfair and unjust description of the 'passionate exchange of views' that actually took place. Perhaps if A. Bollen had not just 'heard of the meeting' but bothered to attend (on a subject they profess to know about) they might not have made this mistake.

2. The organisation attempting to run this scheme, Bristol Family Housing, is not a registered charity but a trading division of Connoly and Callaghan Ltd whose main purpose is obviously to make money. They have already conducted themselves in a very underhand way by making alterations to the building before plans were even submitted. Can we really trust these kind of people to enforce all these so-called assurances on noise and their residents' characters?

3. The vast majority of the 'December 11th objectors' are Shirehampton people like myself who have lived in Shirehampton all our lives. Even if people are new to the area they have the right to object without being accused of trying to turn the locality into 'an exclusive isolated up market venue'.

4. Shirehampton is hardly a village anymore, as one look at the front cover of the February 'Shire' will tell you.

There is nothing wrong with people using the term 'village' but I would suggest that that is all it is in these present times. Perhaps A. Bollen would be better off concerning themselves on matters around Barrowhill Road and their end of the 'village'.

It is all very well for people living half a mile away in ivory towers to criticise us actual residents of St Bernard's Road, but they must realise we have had to live with this situation hanging over us for well over a year.

We are not bigots, just people trying to protect our families' futures and ourselves by finding a more agreeable use of this building.

Yours faithfully

P. Triggle

P.S. In case you did not know, Bristol Family Housing has made a third application, which we believe will be considered by an executive committee on March 6th 2002.


Dear Editor,

Firstly:- We are writing in regard to the comments of A. Bollen, of 8 Barrow Hill, on the Day Care Centre. They stated that the residents who complained should remember that they lived in a village and not an exclusive isolated up-market venue. If by that they mean that we have become very proud of our homes, gardens and living environment, that we care about our neighbours and our surroundings and who comes into it, then yes. We know we are not in an up market venue, but that does not mean that we should drag ourselves down to a level where we accept re-registered drug addicts, paedophiles, and god knows what else as being normal village dwellers.

I wonder if A Bollen of 8 Barrowhill would be so accommodating of this application if this hostel was being planned for No. 9.

Secondly:- It was great to hear that traffic calming measures could now be put into place in the High Street due to funds being made available by the Council. The picture,which was shown is one I see every day, sometimes worse, with people parking to obtain money from the Cashpoint machine....

I do however believe that traffic calming is desperately needed for Park Road. Only Wednesday evening (30th Jan) there was a nasty accident involving a land rover and a motorbike, where the driver of the motorbike was taken to hospital by ambulance. Drivers seem to use this very short stretch of road as an extension of the Portway, and travel down it at great speed. With the building of new houses, more young children are now living on this road, and it's only a matter of time before something serious happens.

Residents St Bernard's Road by email.


I would like to thank the people of Shirehampton very much in raising the grand sum of 2,830.17 for the British Legion Poppy Appeal last November, also special thanks to the shops, pubs, the Working Men's Club and Bristol & West Building Society, and not forgetting Steve and anyone else that may have slipped my memory and has not been mentioned. Nigel Woodhouse, Chairman of the Westbury-on-Trym Branch (whom we come under), gives thanks and mentioned that in November 2000 Westbury won the Trophy for the best Branch increase in the country- quite an achievement.

With thanks once again.

Philip Read, N.V.A. & B. Legion (Thank you for your donation to SHIRE funds)


Dear Editor

With reference to the article in February's issue of the Shire, "A Safer High Street".

I am certain that I am not the only person who is relieved to hear that eventually road safety has been identified as a problem in the village and that steps are being taken to prevent accidental road injuries to children and pedestrians.

However, after living in the area all my life and regularly driving or walking through Shirehampton, I believe that it has to be identified that some residents of this area do not obey basic road safety i.e using pedestrian crossings, not crossing the road between parked cars. This among many other reasons is a cause of so many accidents on the High Street. The pavement by St Mary's Church is extremely narrow, but still pedestrians persist on walking three abreast and more sometime, I have seen many near misses due to this.

Equally surprising is that the people who are disobeying the Green Cross Code are adults, who are not helping in teaching young children the Green Cross Code. I would find it very difficult being a parent trying desperately to ensure my children know how to cross the road safely, when adults all around my children are acting in a dangerous manner, as laziness stops them walking to a pedestrian crossing.

As a driver, myself, I am quick to recognise that drivers of vehicles are by no means perfect and a minority race through the High Street endangering the lives of pedestrians and fellow drivers alike.

I am in no doubt that the cashpoint being made available will be of great use to the village, however surely if the Green Cross Code and the Highway Code are followed the number of minor accidents will decrease and perhaps our local schools, services and charities would be able to benefit from the extra money.

An Aggrieved Tax Payer - Lower High Street. (Name and address supplied)


Dear Editor

Once again the residents and friends of Jim O'Neil House have saved their pennies and small change over the past year and collected the magnificent sum of 140.82. This will be shared out between our local charities. Well done everyone!

From the Warden of Jim O'Neil House.


Thank you for your kindness and for helping her home. Many thanks to you again.

From THE KETTLES FAMILY. (Very many thanks to you for sending a donation for SHIRE funds - we hope your Mum has now fully recovered from her fall).


This photo was sent in by Muriel Smart, now living in Bath. It is of the party held in Portway School to celebrate VE Day, for the children in St Bernard's Road.


Do you remember the Queen's Silver Jubilee back in the 70s? Remember the street parties that were held? Well - on Monday 3rd June it's the Queen's Golden Jubilee. It's also a holiday!

Anyone fancy organising a street party for the street you live in? It won't cost much if you can get the people in your street involved.

Any suggestions as to an entertainment, which the Public Hall could host? Maybe an evening winding-up or down event of some sort? Would you like to use it as a focus for raising cash towards the next lot of Xmas lights?

Your suggestions and comments would be welcome, by letter email or phone. Contact Debbie Trebble and/or Kate Pollard through the Public Hall on 9829963, address: Station Rd, Shire BS11 9TW, or

We look forward to hearing from you and we are happy to co-ordinate your ideas through this column if you'd like us to.


John, Jessica, Bryony and Pam wish to thank family, friends and neighbours for their kindness and support throughout Joanna's illness, which she fought so courageously. The many floral tributes, cards and donations to the BRI Oncology and Cancer Research are greatly appreciated.

April Jubilee Memories Show

Why not spend a relaxing, happy community evening with us, The Grainger Players, as we go back to the early 50s and the Queen's Jubilee and Coronation all rolled into one. A little history, a celebration and a 'join in' fun evening - if you have a Union Jack, bring it - if you have a cushion - bring it - but above all, bring yourselves along and join in the spirit of jubilation on either:

Thursday, April 25th/ Friday, April 26th or Saturday, April 27th, commencing 7.15pm at the Public Hall, Station Road

Ticket prices: all for Thursday 2.00; Friday and Saturday; Senior Citizens 2.50, Adults 3.00, Children 2.00

You can pre-book tickets at Liz's Flowers, High Street, Shirehampton (next to Hairdressers) telephone 9381332. Tickets will be available for sale and collection from the beginning of April.

Pre-booking is going well - thanks to you all . . . So join us - it's a special year - a time for fun, music and laughter. We support M.S. Charity. Hope you can join us - Shirl and Cast.


Monday June 3rd is the Jubilee Bank Holiday Tuesday June 4th is the Spring Bank Holiday If anyone has plans for the Golden Jubilee we will be happy to publish them, copy in by the 10th of the month please!


Neil Sykes took up his appointment as head teacher at Portway Community School on January 1st, '02. Before coming to Portway he was at Beacon Community College, E. Sussex, which was a specialist sports school in a one-school town (it also funnily enough was on a split site, what memories that brought back!) He is a family man, whose own sporting interest is hockey, playing previously in the London League. He is looking to join a local club nearer to home.

Photo: E Verey

We talked for half an hour or so about the school, its place in the community, its development and of course the children. He spoke positively and it was obvious that he has a great feeling for the young people in his care and in what they can achieve. Thank you Neil for giving up your valuable time in what is a very busy day, I enjoyed our chat. (We didn't discuss paperwork but there was plenty of evidence of this!!) One of the reasons he gave me for coming to Portway was that he liked the children he met when he came for his interview, their directness and frankness; he also met members of the school council when they interviewed him.

There have been so many changes these days in all areas of life, and education and schools have not escaped, so we talked about such things as sporting partnerships, the new opportunities funding and private finance initiative. Whew! Who'd be a head! He is very much concerned with maximising resources, having a really good working environment and good standards. Neil's objectives can be summed up by the three "a's", his way of putting it; aspiration, attainment and achievement. His message was that the education is there, Portway can deliver it.

He likes the strength of the local community and really wants the school to be part of that and he is impressed by the support he has had from The Friends of Portway. He seems to me to be enthusiastic, positive and very caring and supportive of the young people and with a high regard for the staff.



We are a group of former pupils of Portway School, who have formed the Portway Oldies Music Society to raise funds for the music Department of Portway Community School.

You may remember that during 2000/01 we raised over 4,500 to buy a set of Timpani Drums to celebrate the 25th Anniversary of the school annual residential music course. This was achieved by many fund raising activities that took place during the year, including a 24-hour Music Marathon and Christmas Carol Playing.

As we are sure you are aware Portway Community School is unique in its approach to music education. Every pupil, upon entering the school has the opportunity to learn a Symphonic Wind Band instrument in the classroom and is encouraged to attend rehearsals before and after school, as well as going on the annual residential music course.

2002 holds new challenges and a new fund raising project; to raise 3,500 to provide a new full set of music stands for the school musicians.

POMS Forthcoming events: 17 March 2002 - POMS members will be partaking in the Bath Half Marathon and will be looking for sponsorship for our teams of runners.
1-2 June 2002 - POMS will endeavour to complete a sponsored 12 concerts in 24 hours in and around Bristol.

We look forward to your support. Watch this space for further details of POMS events Miss Sharon C L Vincent Secretary, Portway Oldies Music Society Telephone: 0117 9824911

Shirehampton FC

Tickets are now available for Shirehampton FC's celebration dinner to mark their 50th Anniversary that will be held at Bristol County Ground, home of Gloucester County Cricket Club. The guest speaker will be Tommy Docherty, former Scottish International and ex-Scotland, QPR, Chelsea and Manchester United Manager.

For more information for this event, please contact the club president Kelvin Gordon on 973 9990 or the club secretary Graham Brunsdon on 907 8042. All ex-players, supporters and members are very welcome.

Advertising space has now become available on pitch sideboards and in the match day programme with 1st XI match ball sponsorship also available. For more information please contact the club treasurer Brian Rowsell on 968 7757.


Sunday, March 10th is Mothering Sunday, which traditionally is the Sunday in the middle of Lent when girls away from home visited their own home and church and paid respect to both. These days we think particularly of our own mothers, so go ahead and spoil them!


Dear Readers,

We would like to thank those who took the trouble to complete the Christmas Lights Questionnaire in last month's "SHIRE" newspaper. There were 28 replies and it is difficult to say if that shows that there is a genuine interest in making Christmas in Shirehampton a more interesting event, or whether it shows that most people do not really care either way.

Many people who replied were in favour of making an effort to get a decent display of Christmas Lights for Shirehampton; they said they expected Bristol County Council to do more and felt that local businesses, particularly the larger ones, could do more. Several replies were from people that felt that Christmas was not just about lights and that the village should consider other ideas for celebrating Christmas.

Shirehampton Traders' Association represents the small businesses in Shirehampton and is happy to do its bit towards making Christmas a brighter occasion. Past experience has shown us that this is not as simple as it seems. The Association cannot take on the sole responsibility for trying to achieve something worthwhile at Christmas; the effort needs to come from the whole community. A considerable amount of effort can be required and that effort needs to be shared out between as many willing hands as possible.

The Shirehampton Traders' Association has accordingly arranged a meeting, which is open to all the public to come and share ideas and thoughts about celebrating Christmas in Shirehampton. The meeting will take place on Wednesday 10th April, at the Public Hall, Station Rd, commencing at 7pm.

We hope that as many people as possible will attend and that the meeting will not be seen just as an opportunity to come and criticise (for that is always easy) but will result in an effort being made by interested individuals and by all sections of the community to get something worthwhile off the ground. It is time for those who say they are keen to see something happen at Christmas to stand up and be counted.

Yours Sincerely,

Nicky Rodaway, Richard Devereux and Thelma Tillett, on behalf of Shirehampton Traders' Association.

Forthcoming Fixtures at Penpole Lane

23rd Feb Henbury OB (2nd XI)
9th March Iron ACton (2nd XI)
16th March Radstock Town (1st XI)
23rd March Crosscourt Utd (2nd XI)
30th March Clevedon Utd (1st XI) 1st April Welton Rovers (1st XI)
3rd April Backwell Utd (1st XI)
6th April Robinsons (1st XI)


Many thanks for your donation to SHIRE funds.


And in fact anyone in the childcare field who has recently been police checked! Shire After School Club needs to add to its bank of Walkers who bring up to 5 children each from St. Bernard's School at 3.15pm across the road to the Club at the Public Hall. If you could be part of our team, collecting on an occasional basis as part of this team, we would be very happy to hear from you. Please ring Kate Pollard on 9829963 or see Ali Aitchison, Senior Playleader, at the Club any school night between 3pm and 6pm. There is a payment of 2.75 per day.


There were 23 people present

The meeting was chaired by John Parsons who welcomed those present with a special welcome to three representatives from Newlands Homes who were presenting plans for the site of the bingo hall in Station Road.

Jeremy Drew, Design Director proceeded to explain with the help of plans on display, the proposals his company were making to build 38 two-bedroomed flats on three floors, with parking and communal garden space at the rear, together with a secure cycle storage and refuse bin area. The flats had been designed to blend sympathetically with the adjoining properties and had an arched front entrance with security features. The majority of the homes would be for sale at an estimated 75 - 80,000 but some would be allocated for social housing managed by a Housing Association. He felt the development would enhance the site, which at present was subject to vandalism and crime due to its run down state and thereby benefit local residents. The plans are available in Shirehampton library.

Questions from the floor followed and answered by John McCready, Development Manager, Peter Hayes the Architect and Jeremy Drew. Various points were raised regarding overspill parking problems, already a major issue in the village, the need for affordable housing for young and elderly single people, and some form of control over tenants of the Housing Association with assurance being sought that the Housing Association involved would be chosen well. Regarding the design, Peter Hayes explained that he had tried to incorporate a style that would blend in with surrounding properties, but using modern materials and construction methods and bearing in mind the requirements of modern day life. The area currently attracts intruders especially at the back of the building and this had been taken into account as far as possible in the security features proposed.

Section Reports

a) Planning and Environment

MHS - the application for a two storey building in station yard has been approved.

Park Hill Service Station - the planning application submitted for the erection of two semi-detached houses on this site is a renewal application made by someone other than the owner and it is believed there are no plans to sell the site for development.

Wessex Water - an application for a mast with nine antennae on this site has been turned down. Pembroke Rd Car Sales - still awaiting a reply from Mr Cadman at the Planning Department. Communication Mast - behind Alldays will be taken down probably in February, when the new mast has been relocated on Barwick House.

Site next to Alldays - an application has been made to build three retail outlets and 14 two-bedroomed dwellings on this site but the plans seem to be incorrect and there are grave concerns about the lack of sufficient parking facilities. Discussion followed about this site including suggestions that it be landscaped and left as woodland area, turned into a car park to relieve the parking problem in the village, or be developed with dwellings only and not shops. Shire Traders do not favour more shops being built and there is general concern that these are not needed. Whatever happens it was felt important that any development should reflect and preserve the old village character. It is not known who owns the land since the council sold it.

Site of former Portway Day Centre - yet another application has been submitted, this time for 10 bedrooms and 20 people. Discussion followed with the argument for hostel facilities being put forward if it meant helping those in trouble who needed temporary help, then Shirehampton should be proud to be a part of that. However, the main concern appears to be that if permission is granted for a hostel, the owners can then change the use as they see fit and this might be to the detriment of the local area. It remains for people to be vigilant for further applications (they can be limitless in number) and keep making their views known. Always keep copies of letters sent to the Planning Department and refer back to them in future correspondence.

Park & Ride - a report in the local press states that planning applications have been made to restrict traffic around side roads in the vicinity of the Park and Ride. There is some confusion as to whether the Environment Impact Survey has been carried out, and no report has been seen by the committee. Work was halted temporarily when slowworms were found on the site. It has been confirmed that people with concessionary bus passes will be able to use the Park and Ride buses.

Radioactive waste - the application to process more of this material at the incinerator in Avonmouth owned by B.F.H has been turned down.

Local Plan - more correspondence has taken place - this to be discussed at the next meeting. BT mast on St Mary's Church - a meeting has taken place about the possibility of erecting an 8" diameter antenna on the church. A member of the committee attended the meeting and feels that there is not enough known about the effects on health of these masts and felt no more should be erected in the area until there is proof one way or the other.

b) General

Shirehampton Community Action Forum - a reminder was given on the history of this forum from the profile presented by Ian Bone when on placement at the Public Hall, through to the inaugural meeting in October 2001. As a result three sub groups were set up - Community Safety, Housing and Youth these have met since October. On 29 January another main meeting was held and it seems funding is available from various sources to move forward with some plans which include pushing for more affordable housing, cameras and a greater police presence in the village and a youth club. Three local churches - St Mary's, the Methodists and Baptists are hoping to set up a Youth Cafe in the village which will be open in the daytime offering mentoring to children who for whatever reason are not in school, and also to be open in the evenings. Suitable premises are being sought. More details on any of these issues are available from John Parsons.

Donations at the last meeting amounted to 27.10.

c) Highways

John has not received reports of lamps not working but maybe people are reporting them direct.

A new traffic survey - will be carried out in the village as funding has become available to implement some form of traffic management scheme. The finger posts at the Park Gates have still not been replaced although John is still pursuing the matter. Street lighting in Pembroke Road - a lamp was located and then relocated on the junction with Pembroke Avenue but is not switched on because it is too close and intrusive to one of the houses. This matter is being pursued.

d) Any other business

Jubilee celebrations - Horace Dammers asked if there would be an interest in celebrating the Golden Jubilee of Queen Elizabeth II in a modest way with perhaps a tea party in the public hall. It is known that the Grainger Players are planning something so perhaps we could liaise.

Date of next meeting Wednesday 27 March 2002 when a representative of Wessex Water will be present.

Future meetings: 29th May, 31st July, 25th September, and 27th November.

St Mary's News

Hi Folks!

Here we are well into the season of Lent. Soon we shall be celebrating Mothering Sunday - which this year falls on Sunday 10th March. This is the time when we all give God grateful thanks for our mothers and all they do for us. We also think of the most famous mother of all - Mary, the mother of Jesus. Children at St Mary's on this Sunday are given small bunches of flowers to take home and give to their mothers. (Thanks must go to a certain OAP who makes up the bunches of flowers the day before - answers to her identity on a post card please - sorry there are no prizes!)

Talking of flowers we shall hopefully see the early signs of Spring, when colour seems to come back into the world after the long dull months of winter and so we move rapidly on to Palm Sunday (24th March) when we celebrate Jesus entering Jerusalem, riding on a donkey, receiving a rapturous welcome with Palm leaves spread out on the road before him. At Holy Communion on this day we all receive a small Palm Cross to commemorate this occasion.

The following week is known as Holy Week, the final week for Jesus' teaching in the Temple.

On Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday (Maundy Thursday) Morning Prayer will be said each day at 9.30am in the Lady Chapel. On Maundy Thursday a service of Holy Communion will be held at 6.30pm in the evening.

The following day is Good Friday when a Family Service will be held at 10.00am. later on at 1.15pm Canon Christine will be leading a short service explaining the crucifixion. this will be followed at 2.00pm by the Cantata 'Olivet to Calvary' by J, H, Maunders and will be performed by Shirehampton Area Choir. The following Sunday is of course Easter Day when we celebrate Jesus' triumph over death. At 10.00am on this day there will be a Family Service with Holy Communion.

Finally, don't be surprised if you are approached and questioned by a young man called Steve Newbold. Steve is an Ordination Candidate at Trinity Theological College, Stoke Bishop and will be attached to St Mary's for a short time. During this period he will be expected to produce a profile of the parish - so go on - give him all the help you can!

Bye for now,



Bill lived at 52, St. Bernard's Road. He died in the B.R.I. on Wed. January 2nd, just nine days away from his 78th birthday. Those of you who knew Kath probably didn't know Bill quite as well, but I'm sure many people will feel sorry for their three sons, Alan, Martin and Michael and their families to know they have lost their mother and their father in a matter of six weeks.

Bill joined the navy in January 1942 and served until 1946. He then went back to his pre-war railway job in his hometown of Lincoln. On marrying Kath in 1949 he came to Bristol working first at Avonmouth and then at Temple Meads. On being made redundant he obtained a job as a porter at Ham Green Hospital and retired at the age of 65 in 1989.

He suffered two heart attacks in the past four or five years. After a successful triple by-pass operation just before Christmas 2001 he developed pneumonia, which claimed his life. His sister Eunice who lives in Horfield in Bristol will sadly miss him.

All the family would like to thank all friends and neighbours for their help and kindnesses shown to them in both of their sad losses.


For many years Arthur Willmott lived at one of the British Legion houses in Sea Mills, and he worshipped regularly in St. Mary's Church, Shirehampton. He took part in one of the earliest Stewardship Programmes, which included the complete redecoration, and painting of the Church interior under the direction of Ted Coombs, the hon. Verger.

Arthur was a keen gardener, and he saw that the outside of the Church was a wilderness in need of care. He told the Vicar, "If the temple of God outside is untidy, people will judge the inside and the worshippers by that".

He gathered together some of the volunteers who had worked inside the church and completely restored the Churchyard, planting trees, which have come to fruition, as he foretold, in the next generation. For many years, he and his band of helpers kept St. Mary's Churchyard in immaculate condition, and it remains, in a very special way, a memorial to him as well as to all those who are buried there.

Arthur left Shirehampton and later went to live in his old home in Waipawa, New Zealand, where he died at the splendid age of 90 on May12th, 2001. His name has been placed in St. Mary's Book of Remembrance.

John S. Smith.


19th March Pontypridd Market
16th April Moreton in Marsh & Bourton on the Water
15th May Swanage 19th June Weymouth 16th July Paignton and Torquay
14th August Poole 17th September Weston
15th October Abergavenny Market
25th November Newport
1st December Chepstow Market and Christmas Dinner

To find out more and to book a seat tel: (0117) 98203180 Coach leaves L. Weston lay-by at 8.45am Coach leaves Shirehampton, St. Mary's Church, 9.15am.