Shire logo

Back to May 2005 SHIRE June 2005 Fowards to July 2005 SHIRE
News Index

Joyce Daniels Retires

Joy Riding - Anything But

St Mary's News

Letters to the Editor

Joyce Daniels Retires

Joyce Daniels has decided that the time has come for her to retire from "SHIRE" Administration. After a career as a Secretary in the Legal Department of the South West Electricity Board, she had scarcely retired from that job, when she became involved in the running of the paper.

She became Secretary and one of the editors on the rota. Added to this Joyce took up the responsibility for organising the adverts, which she has done for a great number of years now. When "SHIRE" began, freesheets were few and far between, however nowadays printed papers dependant on adverts for their revenue are much more common and very competitive.

Recently as all our readers will know, due to the fact that our advertisers number over 100 - all extra work for Joyce, we have been able to expand to 20 pages each month, with 5,000 copies being printed monthly. Joyce Daniels, a volunteer like the rest of us, has been a pivot of the paper and due to her unstinting effort over the years has resulted in "SHIRE" going from strength to strength.

Thank you Joyce for all your hard work, we shall miss you very much indeed.


A Bit of a 'Do'

When the Forder family were looking for a different way to celebrate a Diamond Wedding and a 50th birthday in April this year, little did they think the idea of a celebration concert in St. Mary's Church would be quite the fantastic occasion it was, and this was as much to do with all the friends and family who took part as any advance preparation.

Tim being the organist at St. Mary's invited his friends of Pilning special choir and the Shire Area Choir of which he is director, to take part in a concert to celebrate his 50th and his parents Frank and Betty's Diamond Wedding and was touched and grateful to all those who agreed to rehearse and sing for the occasion.

The result was an evening of variety, fun and laughter. Jonathan Edwardes from Pilning sang 'Where 'ere ye walk' by Handel and 'A Nightingale Sang in Berkeley Square' and surely the purity of his voice would match that old nightingale any day.

Folk group 'Wide Load' became 'Extra Wide Load'! when their 'apprentice' Dick Helme, joined them on harmonica and train whistle for a colourful choice of songs - Red River Valley, Black Velvet Band and Alson Prison Blues! The group also accompanied one of the singalong sessions a 'Fifties and Calypso' medley, the other session being some war time favourites.

Revd. Roger Ducker gave a great 'Spoonerland' version of Cinderella or should I say Rindercella and all the gritty pearls in the audience were looting with haughter if you catch my drift. Tim played a couple of organ pieces including Handel's Largo which was played at the wedding in 1945.

I presented a couple of light hearted biographical tributes to my parents and baby brother! and I'm not sure if I'm forgiven yet! Canon Brian Arman of St. Peter's, Filton, son/brother in law of the celebrants led a prayer of rededication for the Forder marriage after a few kind words about the family of which he has been part for two decades.

The final piece by the choir was Gilbert & Sullivan's "Now to the Banquet' or in our case to the Buffet, a splendid array catered by Gill Sawyer and heartily enjoyed by the 120+ guests. We 'Forders' wish to express out heartfelt thanks to the choirs, soloists, folk group, Gill and Tony and St. Mary's for allowing us to celebrate two landmark occasions in such a wonderfully happy and fitting manner.

Judy Helme

Electric Blankets

Once again Bristol City Council is running a series of free electric blanket safety checks. Each year hundreds of fires are caused by faulty electric blankets. A recent survey showed that over half of the blankets checked had potential life threatening faults and that nationally 95% of electric blanket fires were caused by blankets that were over 10 years old.

Even if your blanket is modern it is still worth having it checked - just in case. The council is also able to offer a money saving mail order voucher scheme to replace blankets thought to be unsafe. The local free safety check will be held at Shirehampton Health Centre on October 19th and is on a strictly advanced booking basis.

Contact tel. no. 9223522. This may seem a long time ahead but make a note in your diary.

Avonmouth Old Boys RFC

The junior section of the Avonmouth Old Boys RFC is looking for boys and girls of all abilities. The age groups are under 8s, under 9s, under 10s, under 12s, and under 14/15s. Training evening is every Wednesday from 6pm-7.15pm at Barracks Lane; matches are on Sundays normally at 10am until 12.30pm.

Want to know more? Contact the club on 9829093 or just turn up at the club on Wednesday or Saturday.

Shirehampton Cricket Club Summer Fixtures

1st XI home games

June: 11th Sat Westbury & District, 25th Sat. Congresbury
July: 23rd Sat Winsley
August: 6th Sat  Nailsea, 20th Sat. Hampset, 1.30pm 29th Mon     Failand & Portbury (Friendly)
September: 3rd Sat. Pak Bristolians, 1.30pm

2nd XI home games

June: 4th Sat Nailsea, 18th Sat. Hampset
July: 2nd Sat Pak Bristolians, 9th Sat. Hambrook 16th Sat Timsbury, 30th Sat. Twyford House
August: 13th Sat Westbury & District, 27th Sat Congresbury, 1.30pm

All matches start at 2pm unless otherwise stated.

Shirehampton Public Hall AGM

The Hall continues to provide a centre for a wide variety of community events from playgroup to evergreens with all sorts of leisure and educational activities. The AGM is your opportunity to get involved and tell us what you want, so come along and meet the committee on Wednesday 22 June at 7.30pm at the Hall in Station Road. Support your Public Hall.

Avonmouth Sea Cadets Royal Navy Inspection (RNI)

The Avonmouth Sea Cadets held a Royal Naval Inspection on Monday, 9th May, 2005, and it was unfortunate that a general invitation for all to attend was received too late to be included in time in the "SHIRE" paper. The Sea Cadet Corps (SCC) is a voluntary nautical youth organisation for boys and girls.

Avonmouth Unit has fully enrolled Sea Cadet members aged between 12 and 18 years and Junior Sea Cadets aged between 10 and 12 years. The aim of the Sea Cadet Corps is to help young people towards responsible adulthood by encouraging valuable personal attributes and high standards of conduct, using a nautical theme based on the customs of the Royal Navy.

Every year each of the 400 Sea Cadet Units around the country is inspected to ensure that it is maintaining standards in all areas of its provision of a uniformed youth organisation. Minimum standards must be maintained in dress, discipline, training along with health and safety, and paperwork.

At the RNI, the cadets welcomed the inspecting officer with ceremonial Colours, which they had been training hard towards for the previous few weeks. Then the cadets proceeded to present two evolutions to guests and their parents. One evolution was a 'shop window' for the unit showing what our cadets 'get up to'.

The second evolution was a demonstration of boating skills. The evening was completed with the Evening Colours ceremony undertaken by the Junior Cadets and Presentations.

Lt. (SCC) B. Hillier (RNR) Commanding Officer

Avonmouth Sea Cadets

On Saturday, October 8th Avonmouth Sea Cadets are holding a dance to celebrate the 200th anniversary of the battle of Trafalgar at the PBA Club, Nibley Road. Tickets are priced at 5 peach, adults only.

Music will be a Live Band, commencing at 7.30pm, ending at 11.30pm. Tickets will be available from the middle of July at 51 Walton Road. BOOK EARLY TO AVOID DISAPPOINTMENT.

Merchant Navy Association Bristol Division

The MNA is campaigning for a retrospective award of a WW2 Arctic Campaign Medal, so far without success, it has been proposed to award an 'Emblem' instead. This is a quote from the magazine of the Bristol & District branch.

Anyone who experienced the winter trips to St. John's, New Brunswick in the Bay of Fundy, where the bridge windows were coated in 'black ice' and hot water bags had to be held against the glass to clear a patch to see through. When the ends of one's eyelashes had a blob of ice on each hair and the frontal bone on your forehead went numb.

When the clear-view screen froze over and the driving snow clogged the radar scanner. The steel plates sometimes fractured with the cold. It is unimaginable isn't it. The Bristol Harbour Festival this year is from 22nd July to 24th and the MNA stand has been redesigned to reflect both the Year of the Sea and the 60th anniversary of the end of WW2.

Many of our local men joined the Merchant Navy and are deserving of our support. Shirehampton Gains a Tea Dance After operating for a number of years at the Methodist Church Hall, Sea Mills, the Sea Mills Tea Dance Club is being forced to find another venue for their dances, held at the moment on Thursday afternoons once a month.

So from August 25th 2005 they will be using the Shirehampton PUblic Hall in Station Road for two hours of music and movement socially from 2.30 to 4.30pm. Ballroom, Old Time and Line Dances will be on offer to music played by John Hutton or David Morey.

Tea and biscuits will be included in the entry fee of 2.00 and a draw will be held to boost the funds. If support is strong enough the frequency of dances will be increased to once a fortnight. For more information please contact David Tudor on 0117 968 2470.

Copy for Shire

You have no doubt already read in this edition that our hard working advertising manager, Joyce Daniels, has decided to hang up her copy pencil, so would you in future please put all copy, including advertising material, into the library addressed to "SHIRE".

If the library is closed just pop it through the library letterbox. If you wish to speak to someone about your advert the telephone number in future is (0117) 982 7985. Please remember that the closing date for copy is the 10th of the month so that we can meet our deadline with our typesetters and printers.

Thank you.

Terry Cook New Local Councillor

The General and Local Elections are now over for another year. We have the same MP, Shire resident Doug Naysmith, the same Prime Minister (who doesn't live in Shire) and a new Labour Councillor; Terry Cook - me. Can I begin this introduction by paying tribute to the work that Pat Roberts, the previous Labour Councillor, did for the community in Shirehampton.

I know she will be missed. It is a great privilege to be elected into any position but I feel particularly honoured to be your new councillor, as for me it is like coming home. I was brought up in Shire, attending Portway School and reaching the dizzy heights of vice head boy during Ms Draper's time at the school.

For many years I ran the youth club at Shirehampton Baptist Church. I also married a local girl, Claire (Bees) and we currently live in Kingsweston with our five children. Many of you will know my Mum and Dad (Ken and Shirley) through their stewardship of the PBA club over many years.

They are both still enjoying their retirement in the sunnier(?) climes of Teignmouth. They are of course very proud of their son, although their pride is tempered by the fact that they believe that I represent the wrong party! In my election address I promised three things; that I would listen, keep you informed and work hard to help all of us build an even better community.

My first promise is to listen. To this end I will be holding regular surgeries in Shirehampton, Avonmouth and Lawrence Weston. These will give you an opportunity to raise any council or community issues with me face to face. I will publicise dates, times and venues through the libraries and local press in the very near future.

Of course you can always contact me by post at 3 Bellhouse Walk, Kingsweston, Bristol BS11 0UE, tel. 938 0514 or by email at - I look forward to hearing from you.

Terry Cook

Dance Classes

We have three Dance Classes per week at Shirehampton Baptist Church Hall, Fridays, 2pm-3pm, Baby class from 18 months-4 years; Saturday mornings, 4 years-13 years; Wednesdays 7.30pm-8.30pm Adults.Principal Mrs. Lisa Pugh tel. 01454 615463.

Good news for Portway Community School

Her Majesty's Inspectors visited Portway recently, observing lessons, looking at pupils' books and interviewing staff and pupils. They reported that the school is improving. Inspectors said the 'Headteacher has an ambitious but appropriate agenda for improvement.'

They also felt that the school knew its strength and weaknesses and what it needed to do to improve. Above all, the quality of teaching has improved since the last Inspection with very good lessons observed in languages, PE and Food Technology. Pupils' behaviour and attitudes were also seen as improving and better than during all previous visits.

The Headteacher, Steve Davis said 'With the support of parents and the community we will now keep up this level of improvement to come out of Special Measures.I want parents to feel happy and confident about sending their children to us, and our pupils and staff to be proud that they come to Portway Community School.

Going Abroad?

If you are going abroad this year there are two or three things that it's worth checking up on:

  • Your passport, does it have enough unexpired time left on it? Remember that most places require several month's time left on it after your return home. It's worth checking with your travel agent.
  • If you are going to a country where malaria is prevalent, then do get some anti-malarial tablets. Apparently last year some 2000 Britons caught malaria on holiday, and of course it is potentially fatal.
  • If you are travelling in Europe get a new E111 from the post office. At one time these forms were open ended, but that is no longer the case.
  • And if your are going out in the sun don't forget to - SLIP, SLAP, SLOP. Slip on some clothes. Slap on a hat. Slop on sunscreen!

PBA Pensioners

Are invited to meetings held on the third Tuesday of every month except December in the Clubhouse at Nibley Road, Shirehampton. Transport is laid on from Sea Mills, Lawrence Weston, Shirehampton and Avonmouth.

Further information can be obtained from the Secretary - tel. 956 8706. Meetings from 1.30pm to 2.30pm include entertainment and plenty of opportunity to meet ex-colleagues and friends.

Tooth Care

On Thursday 5th May Year 3, reception and nursery children from Shirehampton Primary School enjoyed a visit from the Avon Primary Care Dental Service. The day was organised to make children more aware of the importance of looking after our teeth.

Children from Year 3 were shown what damage sugary drinks can do, as well as being instructed on how to clean teeth correctly. As part of the activities, harmless disclosing tablets containing vegetable dyes were used to show children any areas on their teeth that were not being cleaned properly.

Children from reception and nursery enjoyed role-playing 'dentist and patient'. Everybody really enjoyed the visit and it helped us to understand just how important it is to clean our teeth thoroughly, at least twice a day.

Joy Riding - Anything But

Joy Riding the rather inappropriate pseudo name given to the practice of stealing cars, driving them at dangerously high speeds and with reckless abandon to any damage and injury caused to all the innocent parties caught up in it. There is the occasional news report of a"joyrider" being injured or killed and the general attitude is a shrug of the shoulders and "so what, they should not have been doing it".

Those indulging themselves in stealing cars cannot complain it's a fair enough comment to make. There was recently an incident in Pembroke Road, Shirehampton that brought home the true costs both financially and emotionally to the blameless people involved.

At 1.30am on Wednesday 20th April a stolen car was driven at high speed along Pembroke Avenue towards the junction of Pembroke Road. Residents living around this corner were woken by firstly screaming tyres, then screeching brakes and then the impact as the young driver lost control and careered into a parked car on the opposite side of Pembroke Road. The driver then tried reversing back into Pembroke Avenue in order to make a getaway.

The car had a split radiator, a bonnet that looked like a folded piece of paper, oil, water and petrol pouring from underneath, steam and smoke belching everywhere. By the time he had reversed the ten metres back into Pembroke Avenue the clutch was burnt out.

At this time the police were receiving numerous calls from witnesses, witnesses who were deeply shocked having been very rudely awakened from sleep. Initially there was total horror and distress as the young girl passenger got out and started to run off and the driver remained in the car.

No-one knew whether he was injured or perhaps trapped and at that time it looked as if the car was about to catch fire. That was not the case at all, he was staying long enough to remove the radio and trying to set the inside of the car alight, the young girl having returned to give encouragement in firing the car.

By now two or three minutes have passed, some of the menfolk have scrambled into clothes and are at the scene. At this point the youngsters beat a hasty retreat. The police were already on their way and managed to intercept and arrest the girl and boy and return them to the scene, they arrived at the incident complete with offenders in under 6 minutes.

Now think about what has really happened. Some 11 households in the immediate area and probably quite a number of others have been woken in the middle of the night. Let's be generous and say 11 units of 2 people, that's 22 in total. Distressed and disrupted.

Those who were closest gave initial statements and then later more detailed statements, the last one being completed at 4.45am. It doesn't stop there, no-one can readily get back to sleep as within a short time of it happening the Fire Brigade turn up to ensure the car is safe and not likely to explode.

Then of course there is the tow-away truck - you cannot leave a car in the middle of the road. OK, so the police, Fire Brigade and tow truck driver are doing their job. That's some 4/6 fire officers who could have been needed at a serious fire to save someone's life.

Initially 6 then 4 police officers tied up for 4 hours and then probably longer with paperwork back at the station. They could have been needed at a much more serious incident - don't complain we do not have enough police officers they are there but it is idiot youngsters like this who take them off the streets.

The tow truck driver, there could have been a driver somewhere waiting on the side of the road for assistance or an accident to be cleared on the motorway - causing disruption to possibly hundreds of people. More importantly we then have the victims. Whilst all this is going on the owners of the stolen car are asleep in bed blissfully unaware that they are about to be woken with the news that their car has been written off.

Not only has their car been written off, perhaps it was transport for work and a day's pay or maybe more is lost, there probably has to be time taken off to sort out insurance etc. the finding of a new vehicle. What if the car was used to visit elderly relatives or to transport them to the shops, Doctor or Hospital.

Victim number two has already been woken by the police to the news that his car has been smashed, that car is a write off, the impact damaged the boot, rear light assembly and rear wing. The gentleman concerned is older and was very shocked and upset, so much so that at 7am he was still wandering around trying to take it all in.

The benefit of the doubt must be given to the families of the two offenders. One assumes that when the police knocked on their doors and asked them to attend the police station to collect the errant pair they too were shocked, distressed and worried.

Then we have the two young people themselves, whilst they will not receive and do not deserved any sympathy from those touched by this they are well on the road to ruining the rest of their lives. I don't know about you but I have lost count of how many people have been affected. Joy, what Joy.


Bristol is a Centre for Deaf Community and Culture

With a Centre for Deaf People in King Square, the Centre for Deaf Studies at the University of Bristol, and Elmfield School for Deaf Children, Bristol is truly a centre of excellence for the Deaf World. The Reverend Prebendary Gill Behenna is the Church of England Chaplain with the Deaf Community in Bristol and the wider area.

Gill has worked in the Deaf Community for over 24 years. She is a qualified Sign Language Interpreter and also holds the Diploma of Chaplaincy with Deaf People awarded by the Church of England. The Chaplain's role is threefold:

  • To care pastorally and spiritually for deaf people, their families and friends. This is just the same as ministry carried out by parish clergy and chaplains in other fields.
  • To be a resource for parishes in matters relating to deafness and Deaf People
  • To work with the wider church in ensuring equal access for Deaf People to all the services of the church.

On the first Sunday of the month, Gill uses Sign Language to interpret the 10.00am service of Holy Communion at St. Mary's. Many of you may have already met Gill as she signed the funeral for Jane Powell in January to which so many from the Deaf Community came.

Gill is also available to interpret for weddings, funerals and baptisms and in this context is a support for other Sing Language Interpreters working in the Bristol Area. If you know someone who would appreciate signed services, why not bring them along to St. Mary's on the first Sunday of each month at 10.00am.

You'll be sure of a warm welcome. For further information please contact Canon Christine - tel: 0117 985 5450 or visit the website

(AUS) Community Association

The AGM of the AUS Community Association is on Wednesday June 1st at The Cottage, High Street, Shirehampton at 7.15pm. All are welcome.


Last month a photograph was printed on page 4 of a school photograph,  with a plea from Rosemary Clarke for help in identifying those in it. As a result of a couple of phone calls we can now supply a few names.

Middle row: 4th from left, Mike Dorgan; 8th from left,. ? Irwin, 9th from left, Roger Caple. Front row: 5th from left, Ann Staddon; 3rd from left, Frankie Button, 1st on right, Sylvia Melias.

On page eight was another photo, also with a plea for help, I am told that it was taken at a V.E. party on the river bank at the lower end of Nibley Road, that the vicar was Mr Gazzard and his wife was   dressed as a gypsy. On the subject of photographs, I think we should all make a resolution to make a note of names, places and dates on the back of each one - for the sake of posterity.

I know it's a perfect bind and we all think we can't possibly forget but how many of us, hand on heart can honestly say that we do remember? And when we are no longer around, what then? Recently a cousin was turning out her parents' house and came across a photo taken I would think around 1910-1914.

Could we identify the people? We knew they were members of our family because of the strong family likeness and we were hazarding guesses about them but were we right? Who knows! If only someone had written the information on the back! Life is full of 'if only's'.

This photo of Avon Primary School 1954 has been sent in as it contains some of the faces in Rosemary's Clarke's photo published last month. Susan also suggests that Rosemary's photo was taken in 1952 or earlier. The numbers correspond to these names: 1. Mrs Kirkup; 3. Bobby Bulldock?; 6. Ian Gane; 10. Colin Sims; 13. Michael Taylor; 15. Elsie Britton; 18. Christine Petrie; 20. Susan Hook; 21. Geraldine Coughlin; 33. Jean Thompson; 34. Wendy Beazley; 35. Ann ?; 36. Hazel Quigg.

Finally when you send in a photo would you please remember to put your name and address on the back of it if you want it returned.

A Little Time to Spare?

Anyone looking to spend a few pleasant hours on a Wednesday might like to come along and give a bit of help at the Beachley Walk Lunch Club. Catering experience would be helpful, but willingness to give some assistance with refreshments and in the kitchen would be fine.

Drop in from 10am on any Wednesday or give John Miller a ring on 01454 202023. The AGM of the AUS Community Association is on Wednesday June 1st at 7.15pm at the Cottage, 115 High Street, Shirehampton. All are welcome.

Shirehampton Model Railway Club


The Club layout of Coaley Junctions has once again been on exhibit, this time at the Bristol Model Railway Exhibition which took place over the May Bank Holiday at the Thornbury Leisure Centre. The three day event is probably one of the largest in the South West and attracts hundreds of visitors The club layout was presented with the prestigious Pendon Trophy for its scratch built station buildings and scenery, which is quite an achievement.

Local people interested in the layout will have a chance to see it, as it will be the centre attraction at Shirehampton Model Railway Exhibition at the Public Hall on Saturday 15th October 2005. Yes Shirehampton is to host its own Railway Exhibition again. Further information about the Exhibition or about joining the club can be obtained from the club secretary, Simon Parker on 0117 3305353.   

A.A.C. Neighbourhood Watch Centre

Spring will soon turn to Summer and the frosts will have passed. Thoughts turn to gardening, please take some simple precautions to protect your property. Do not leave any gardening tool unattended in the garden, mowers and strimmers in particular. They will grow legs and walk.

When working in the front garden do not leave the back door open, unlocked or a window open, when working in the back the same applies to the front. While you are talking to that nice person at the front their accomplice could be rifling your possessions inside whilst you are distracted and occupied.

Even if no one is keeping your attention you are too busy to notice or hear someone going into the back of the house when you are busy gardening. Garden sheds are a prime target this time of year. Always keep them locked. A good investment is  a small cheap and effective alarm that can be purchased through the Police Crime Prevention Unit.

There is usually a Police Caravan Unit on The Green every couple of weeks. Go and talk to them they will advise your. These alarms are simple to fit. If offered cheap garden tools and equipment, remember, your gain will be someone else's loss, it's a criminal offence to buy stolen goods and if no-one buys, there it's not worth stealing them. Good Gardening.

P.S. Knowing that my son was at home - albeit at the top of the house - I was gardening at the front and left the back door unlocked. You've guessed it - two opportunist thieves walked in - opened every drawer in the house plus my handbag and stole the sum total of 9 in French francs before they were disturbed. My son? He'd fallen asleep and was finally woken up by the two men talking to each other. They say you learn by  experience!  Ed.

Shirehampton Swimming Baths

Recently we took our 5-year-old granddaughter, down visiting grandma, for a swim at Shirehampton. What a boon that shallow pool is; Shirehampton must be one of the very few places to have such an amenity, how lucky we are. The staff were very vigilant in making sure that none of the exuberant teenagers dived in on us and we had a lovely time, we were left in peace to enjoy ourselves.

There were quite a few teenagers in the big pool, well supervised and obviously enjoying themselves without being over-zealously restrained. I was very impressed with the whole set-up. It's obvious that some areas could do with sprucing up a bit, but surely that's not beyond the bounds of possibility.

What a shame that there's talk of closing this one amenity that Shirehampton has. Come on good people of Shirehampton - use the baths or lose them. I remember when I first came to Bristol there were placards on the hoardings (put up to hide the bomb damage) proclaiming 'Every Child a Swimmer'.

All school children went swimming once a week - not to everyone's liking I know, certificates were awarded at different stages, life saving and personal survival swimming were also taught. There were inter-school swimming galas, inter-city swimming galas and Bristol was host to one of the first, if not the first, English Schools' Swimming Association National Championships after the war.

I don't know if any of these happen any more. What I do know is that learning to swim is a very necessary skill, added to which swimming is an excellent way to exercise. If anyone has a memory of swimming in days past, do tell us of your experience.


Charities Combine for Children with Cancer

Launch of CLIC Sargent charity shop. CLIC charity shop in Shirehampton was re-launched as CLIC Sargent by a longstanding volunteer Mary Howell, at 11am on Friday 22 April. Mary cut a ribbon re-opening the shop in front of guests including local customers, supporters and volunteers, on the day that the merger of CLIC and Sargent Cancer Care for Children was officially launched.

The two charities have combined to bring support for children with cancer and their families under one roof. The work of the two charities is complementary and the merger will improve the level of care and support to children with cancer and ensure greater strategic planning of future services with less duplication.

CLIC Sargent will be the UK's leading children's charity. Children face harsh and protracted treatment and often lift-long difficulties even though more that 70% now survive cancer, ti is the UK's number one killer children's disease. Every 48 hours, 10 children and young people are diagnosed with cancer.

David Ellis, Chief Executive of CLIC Sargent, says:  "It is hard to imagine the deep shock of diagnosis, the great hope and stresses experienced through treatment, and finally the reality of rehabilitating a child for a future living with the emotional and physical effects of cancer treatment, or coping with loss.

These children and their families need emotional, social and practical support every step of the way. CLIC and Sargent Cancer Care for children can do this better as one organisation, drawing together all our resources and services to ensure that health and social care work together seamlessly and that future services are planned strategically.

Sargent Cancer Care for Children did not have any shops and so this and the other 24 shops are a unique and great strength to the new charity." Rebecca Shortman, Manager of the Shirehampton shop says: "We hope that our customers will continue to support the shop and through it children with cancer and their families.

The shop is a focal point for awareness of the issues faced by children with cancer and their families in the area. We are proud to be the face of CLIC Sargent in Shirehampton and to be part of an even greater, national effort to support children with cancer."

Bob Woodward, Founder of CLIC in 1976, says: "If the ongoing commitment to improving the care of children with cancer is better served by merging the two charities, then it must be right to do so." Research shows that families need and want a one-stop-shop. They want consistency and a face they can recognise.

CLIC Sargent has been created to meet this need delivering a holistic and integrated service to children with cancer and their families. CLIC Sargent is now the leading children's cancer charity in the UK, in February supporting 257 children with cancer and their families in the south west.

162 CLIC Sargent care professionals at 22 specialist centres and in the local community throughout the UK, including Bristol Children's Hospital, provide emotional, social and practical support; 7 CLIC Sargent homes near hospitals provide a haven where families can stay whilst their children undergo treatment and the CLIC Sargent holiday service enables families to take a break in the knowledge that care is on hand for their child.

Financial support is also provided to families in need to help with the added cost of cancer. For more information about CLIC Sargent or to make a donation visit or telephone 0845 301 0031.

St Mary's News

Hi Folks! Summer at last and the beginning of our "Open gardens Season" Displayed on one of the Notice boards in the church are the dates and locations of people who have agreed to open their gardens. These are always very enjoyable social events and very often light refreshment are provided by your host. Entrance to these open gardens is FREE! - but it will cost your cash to get out!

Money extracted from you by "the heavies" on the garden gate will be donated to St Mary's. Why not consider opening your garden - it doesn't matter how small it is, the fellowship enjoyed by all is all what really matters. Just write your details on a vacant date on the notice board.

Jim Forder's 50th Birthday celebration combined with his parents' Diamond Wedding Anniversary, went off exceedingly well and was very much appreciated by those present. In fact it went so well Jim is taking bookings for his 75th Birthday! The new House Groups have now been launched and very favourable reports on their benefit are being received back at H.Q.

Our St George's Day Supper on Saturday 23rd April 2005 was great fun, with an excellent meal provided by Gill Sawyer. I never cease to be amazed by the original ideas for providing not only a very amusing but apt menu. Competitions were held for the tables of guests to produce the best and most original English Crown.

Also sheets of very attractive newspaper were provided to dress up a "debutante". None of the ladies on my table were brave enough to act as models so "yours truly" was dressed up whilst speaking in a high voice! With lipstick and rosy cheeks, together with newspaper and sellotape, I was made to look absolutely divine! (I was frightened to go outside into the street in order to protect my honour!)

But talking of being dressed up, guests were invited to dress up in something typically English. David Fronde came dressed up as a very authentic looking John Bull (not to be confused with Verger John Bull) Tony Sawyer as Billy Bunter from Greyfriars School and the "Belle of the Ball"  was Canon Christine dressed up as a London Pearly Queen wearing a black hat and black costume covered in hundreds of buttons and beads.


On the back of the jacket was St. Mary's Church depicted entirely by very small buttons. A work of art in itself - the handiwork of a certain G.S. who also cooked the Supper! How does she do it with all her church duties as well?

I'm sure many of you will have seen the banner on the church facing the High Street, advertising our "Alpha Course". This course is designed to assist you to discover more about the Christian faith. It is still not too late to approach Canon Christine who will be only too pleased to point you in the right direction!

Now for some dates for your Diary. On Saturday 18th June 2005, the Bristol Brass Consort will be holding a concert at 7.30pm that evening in the church. Some members of the band are former members of Portway School and St Mary's is a local venue for them. During the interval, wine and nibbles will be served. Judging by past events these are sure to be wonderful! Tickets cost 6 - all proceeds going to the Organ Fund. 

The following Saturday - 25th June 2005, we are holding an Ascot-Evening in the Church Centre. So enjoy an evening at the races - ladies please come wearing your best Ascot hat and gentlemen in your best Jockey outfit. An 'elite' evening of horse racing, gourmet food and entertainment. Tickets again cost 6. See Gill Sawyer at the Church Office for tickets for these events.

I'm delighted to inform you all that our Curate - Andy Schuman is to be ordained Priest at Bristol Cathedral on Sunday 3rd July 2005. This will then enable him to take a fuller part in our services. Andy has fitted in very well at St Mary's over the past 12 months and our prayers are with him and his family as he approaches this very important milestone in his ministry.

The following weekend is our Patronal Festival, Saturday 9th July, we shall be holding our Summer Fayre in church from 10am until 12 noon. From 2pm  until 4.30pm you can enjoy a cream tea and admire the flowers in church, for this is also our flower festival. I always think this is the opportunity to show off St Mary's church building at its very best.

Sunday Services are as usual displayed on the notice boards in the churchyard. The theme on that day will of course be devoted to our Patron Saint - St. Mary. On the Monday evening - 11th July - the Bristol Citadel Salvation Army Band will be holding a concert at 7.30pm on the village green. Should the weather unfortunately be wet, the concert will be held in St. Mary's.

A collection will be held - the proceeds of which will be donated to the Salvation Army. Another event later in July is the annual Summer Concert performed by Shirehampton Area Choir. This will be at 7.30pm on Saturday 16th July. Again - tickets will cost 6 with wine and nibbles during the interval.

Tickets will be available from Gill Sawyer with the proceeds going to the Organ Fund. We have no further information yet on the proposed sale of the church centre to the NHS for the new Primary Health Care Trust building. As soon as we have some positive news you will be informed.

The 'Open Church Day" on Bank Holiday Mondays has shown to be extremely successful, when lunches and teas were served (by that well known St. Mary's cook!!) Many favourable comments have been received and this will now become a regular feature on future Bank Holiday Mondays. Well, it's time for me to shut up, so take care and I'll speak to you again next month.

Bye for now!, C.M.E.

'Sharing God's Love' in a new guise

St. Mary's Church Shirehampton use the logo 'Sharing God's love' and have found that one of the best ways to increase their fellowship and draw people in is through hospitality and times spent together. Their St. George's supper and evening was an example of just such an event; a four course 'England themed' meal and quizzes, competitions and activities that left people laughing all evening!

The opportunity to come in fancy dress is one that a number of people, and especially the Vicar, Rev. Canon Christine Froude, can never resist. There were Morris dancers, Country yokels, an appearance by Edward Elgar, John Bull and Billy Bunter, English flags and England football shirts, representatives of Royal Ascot but undoubtedly the highlight was the appearance of Canon Christine as 'The Pearly Queen of Shirehampton' which will long be remembered by all who attended. Fourteen hundred buttons, metres of sequins and pearl beads and even an attempt by the member of the congregation who sewed it, to copy the church in buttons on the back of the jacket.

The evening also raised 450 towards church funds.

Letters to the Editor

Wayside Memorial

Dear Editor,

I am writing response to those who wrote in the "Shire" regarding the wayside memorial. How narrow minded you are to think that everyone in Shirehampton wants a tacky, makeshift memorial in one of the most picturesque places surrounding our village. Shame on you for thinking of yourselves.

I understand that a son was lost and you are still grieving for him, but why can't you show your grief by putting flowers on his grave, like the majority of people in this country who do every day. Who in their right mind would want to remember where a loved one died, better to remember where they lived and hold on to those fond memories.

I wouldn't part with my treasured photos or clothes to be stuck on a tree for the elements to destroy. Yes, this man did make a very stupid mistake, but he did not consider the possible consequences of his actions. What if he had not hit the tree but a person like Mrs Fox who regularly walks her dog past this site, how would you have all felt then?

This is not a harmless memorial, it is a distraction to drivers, making their way up and down Park Hill, and no thought has been given to the wildlife that could get caught or tangled in one of the many ribbons adorning the tree. No one can improve upon nature and this site looks no better than discarded litter in the gutter.

Take the photos, the T shirt and the ribbons home where they belong, give yourself and your loved ones some dignity and respect and show your grief at his graveside.

Name supplied

Pick It Up!

Dear Editor,

I'm not quite sure whether to scream and shout, or just cry with my son - oh, my goodness gracious, you may say... why? The reason, some readers may think, is not worthy of such a statement, but I think many of you will understand - it's the dog 'poo' problem.

What could be a pleasant walk to school is a hop, skip and jump to avoid the huge piles of it all over the pavement of Station Road and if you, your children and pushchair win that challenge, you will get caught by the surprise in the grass, right by the school gates. I'm not going into how disgusting the last 20 minutes of shoe cleaning have been, because it was worse to see how upset my son was.

I know plenty of good dog owners and know that it is not all owners that are guilty, so to those that don't already, PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE, pick up toe 'poo', it could be a child that is special to you that gets involved with it next time you take that walk to school.

Name and address supplied

(Note from Editor - the elderly are also affected - it is slippery stuff and a fall could easily result in broken bones - SO PICK UP THE 'POO').

National Carers Week 13-19 June 2005 Work, Rest and Play

A carer is someone who, without payment, provides help and support to   friend, neighbour or relative who could not manage otherwise because of frailty, illness or disability. They may even be juggling paid work with their unpaid caring responsibilities at home.

There are 6 million carers in the UK, over the next ten years this is expected to double in numbers. Society depends upon the support that carers provide to sick and disabled people and carers save the state over 57 billion every year - that is twice as big as the health service.

Many carers give up work to care or find it difficult to take up employment, leisure and training opportunities.

National Carers Week Highlights

  • the needs of carers;
  • rights that carers have;
  • contribution that carers make to every community
  • support and services available to carers 6 million carers in the UK, alongside GPs, help look after family, neighbours and friends; in fact, when it comes to caring they are probably the GPs greatest partners.

You may be one of the UK's three million working carers, dealing with the stresses of what might seem like two jobs - one paid, one unpaid - and meeting the needs of both. You may feel unable to disclose your caring responsibilities at work in case you are seen as less able to do your paid job.

But with the right support you can do both. We believe that carers who are working should be encouraged and supported to remain at work for as long as possible, or as long as they choose. There are many circumstances which may lead you to call on outside help. You may simply be exhausted.

You may find certain aspects or tasks of caring difficult. Your own circumstances may have changed - you may be in poor health yourself; caring may be affecting your work; you may find it difficult to find time for other family commitments. The illness or condition of the person you care for may have worsened.

You may feel that carrying out certain tasks is not appropriate to the nature of the relationship with the person you care for - for example, a mother may not want her son to bathe her. You may not have considered yourself a carer until now and so will need to come to terms with a completely new situation - perhaps, for example, bringing home an older relative who used to live alone.

Or you may have been caring for someone at home but are now unsure whether you can provide the extra care they need. Not sure where to turn for help or support? We can point you in the right direction. Tel: 0117 982 5247 for contact with your locally based Carer Support Worker or contact Carersline tel. 0117 965 2200 (10.00-1.00 Monday-Saturday).