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News Index

Shirehampton Public Hall Celebrations

Local Dancers Explode into action at Dance Explosion Show!

Notes From Abroad?

The National School

Craft Exhibition

End of an era for Auto Parts as Dave Ford retires

Congratulations to Alderman Celia Lukins

Kings Weston Activity Group

Avonmouth Football Club

Bristol - Avonmouth Sea Cadets Celebrate The Organisation's 156 Years

LDub & Shire’s Got Talent!

St Mary’s News

From the Registers at St. Mary's - June 2012

Letters to the Editor

The Lamplighters

Lamplighters Marsh Seed Scattering Event

Messy Church

Shirehampton Public Hall Celebrations

WHAT a wet and windy June we had in Shirehampton but on Saturday 23rd.

The sun struggled to come out, the wind dropped, the rain held off until 5pm and the Public Hall held their Jubilee celebration. It was an opportunity for the community to have fun together and showcase their groups and raise funds. All of the halls’ trustees, and the Manager were joined by representatives of Women’s fellowship, Shire Stitchers, SCAF, The Grainger Players, Twyford Art group and the Model Railway Club, all groups that are held in the hall. The 191 Scouts, Rainbows, Penpole Community Association, Tynings Field Community Group and some independent people from the community also had a table.

The hall had been decorated by the Grainger Players with bunting and balloons, a big thank you for making it look so festive. The hustle and bustle of people buying, selling and just chatting gave it a comfortable community feel, several people commented on the traditional village fete atmosphere that had been created and thought the hall looked great. The trustees were pleased about this as they had the hall redecorated this year. Lots of people enjoyed the delicious burgers and hotdogs and the wide choice of cakes to have with a cuppa.

It was great to see the art work produced by the children who drew their thoughts of the Jubilee, this was displayed on the art gallery board, maybe young artists who will join one of the art groups at the hall in the future. The children’s treasure hunt was an opportunity to get to learn more about this historic village hall. Lots of questions were asked of the adults, it was noted that our councillor Doug Naysmith who came to support us, gave a helping hand to some children who were struggling with some of the questions. A few children came in fancy dress and all the children received stickers and a jubilee medal with ‘Shire Public Hall’ dated on the back.

Photo: Kathryn Courtney

Photo: Kathryn Courtney

We were serenaded by Gil Osman on the piano who gave us tunes from the decades and we had a medley of rousing songs finishing with Rule Britannia performed by our own Grainger Players. Gil, a keen chorister, joined them as did Charlotte Leslie our local MP who also came to support us.

Thank you to Katie our Manager, Barbara our Chairperson and all of the trustees, helpers and cake bakers. We must also say a big thank you to Accolade wines, Lidl and all the other generous raffle donors. Thanks also have to go to not only the participants who shared information or offered things for sale, but to all of the lovely people that came and joined us. I reinforce what was said by many what a lovely friendly time we shared together, a fitting way to celebrate the Diamond Jubilee.

Colour Our Car Competition

OCEAN RODAWAY is running a great competition!

Design and colour one of our Golf’s, and the lucky winner will see their graphics on one of our cars!

Ever wondered what it would be like to design your own car? Well here at Ocean, we are offering all under 15’s the opportunity to enter our fantastic competition that will give you the chance to demonstrate your artistic skills to the max.

Using a full array of graphics and colour put your imagination to the test and apply your design to any white area of the car. Completed designs can be handed in to any one of our local offices. All entries will be considered and judged based on originality and creativity. Good luck and have fun! Call at Ocean Rodaway in the High St, Shirehampton for entry form.

Irene Hadley 15/7/1921 - 5/6/2012

In loving memory of a dear Mum, Nan and Great Nanny. We would like to express our thanks and kind thoughts to everyone who attended the Memorial Service for mum at St Mary’s Church on 27th June. Thank you Gill for a very moving service and a huge thank you to the staff at Bradley House who cared for mum in her final days. Judith, Sue and family

Local Dancers Explode into action at Dance Explosion Show!

THIS summer, several groups of dancers from the local community came together to put on a Charity Fundraising Dance display at St. Mary’s Church called ‘Dance Explosion’.

Dance Explosion is run by a dance organisation called ConfiDANCE which provides free dance sessions to encourage young people of all backgrounds to build their confidence, aspirations, teamwork and creativity through performances.

ConfiDANCE invited many local dance clubs to join in with this celebration of dance, which included 3 ConfiDANCE S.T.O.M.P dance clubs from Shirehampton, 1 S.T.O.M.P club from Sea Mills and another S.T.O.M.P club from Patchway, as well as dancers from Bankleaze Primary School after school club, display teams from Paula McCann’s Freestyle Dance School in Avonmouth and a group of Dancers who attended a Bristol camp called ‘Dance Fever’ who came to show the routines they learnt whilst at that camp.

A total of 79 dancers performed in 16 different dances, with a range of styles including Street dance, Freestyle Disco, Slow dance, Rock N Roll, lyrical and action dancing. The youngest dancers were just 4 years old and the oldest 16 years old, displaying a whole range of different abilities from championship teams through to children who had been dancing for only 2 weeks.

ConfiDANCE started this event 4 years ago as an opportunity for young people who have fun in their clubs and schools with music and dance to get together to perform in shows run by and for local youth and their families. There are no fees or auditions, it is for under 18’s, it is not a competition and it is run by volunteers from the local community. Dance Explosion has grown in size over the past 4 years and is spreading to include young people from wider areas and we now hold 2 major shows each year as well as smaller performances too.

Through refreshments and a collection taken from the audience, we were able to raise £136 to give to local good causes including The Tithe Barn Appeal, ConfiDANCE youth activities and St. Peter’s Hospice. This year’s show was also dedicated to the memory of Derek Ford, who was a much valued member of St. Marys Church and the local community.

Dance Explosion was simply a celebration of what young people in the area can achieve in their spare time, featuring lively music, colourful costumes, talented children having fun dancing, plus a lovely community spirit. Thank you to everyone who supported and took part in this event. If you are interested in any of the local dance groups featured in Dance Explosion, please email to be put in touch with the relevant clubs.

Thank you, Amy Boucher (ConfiDANCE Director)

Clear Safety Message from Smoke House Exercise

A mother can now clearly see the need for families to have escape plans after she fought her way out of a smoke-filled house during a demonstration.

Avon Fire & Rescue Service borrowed a three-bedroom semi-detached property on a Weston-super-Mare housing estate for the exercise. Local mum Lou Eddins, who has a 20-month-old son, volunteered to take part in the demonstration. She based herself in the first floor master bedroom while fire-fighters filled the property with safe, synthetic, smoke.

When the smoke detectors activated, Lou opened the bedroom door and had to make her way down the stairs and out of the fume-filled property. She said: "It was absolutely terrifying; I could barely see anything in front of me. "In my own home there are things on the floor like shoes everywhere. "It made me realise how ridiculous it is that me and my husband have gone this far without making a plan in our home. "We really need to make sure we know what to do in a real emergency situation if we had to grab Dexter and get him out."

Lou said she found it terrifying even though she knew that the smoke was safe, and that fire-fighters were already on hand to help out.

Station Manager Stuart Matthews said: "Thick smoke from a fire can quickly cause you to become disorientated, even in the most familiar surroundings. Our advice to any householder is to ensure you have a clear and unobstructed escape route, as this really could make the difference between life or death. It is actually the smoke the causes the most deaths in fires, as just a couple of breaths can be fatal. The easier it is to escape from your property, the better the chances are of surviving," he said.

More advice and tips can be found on the fire service website,

AF&RS would like to thank Alliance Homes for kindly allowing us to use one of their properties for the demonstration.

Notes From Abroad?

In the last edition of SHIRE, I wrote about what a valuable service ‘SHIRE by Post’ provides to those who no longer live in the village and have made their home elsewhere in the UK or the world. We are really glad that the paper gives ex-pat Shire folk a ‘taste of home’ and hope you are able, through the stories and pictures, to imagine what life is like in the village these days.

But, at a recent committee meeting, one of our members made the valid point that perhaps those of who do still live in this corner of Bristol might be interested to know a bit about some of the places where former residents of Shirehampton are now living.

So, if you are now living somewhere exotic or interesting and feel like describing it for the benefit of our readers back here, why not write a short piece and send it to , perhaps along with a couple of pictures too (although we reserve the right not to use anything that looks too sunny as we suffer another classic British summer!) We look forward to hearing from you.

J Harris

The National School

Unfortunately, the application to have the National School registered as a List Building has failed. A letter from English Heritage states ‘The Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport has asked us to consider your application in our role as the Government’s statutory advisor on the historic environment with responsibility for listing. We have no considered the application and completed an assessment of the building based on the material provided. I am sorry to inform you that the Minister responsible for this matter, the Minister for Tourism and Heritage, has decided not to add National School to the list at this time. The reasons for this decision are set out in the attached report.’

The conclusion of the report states: ‘ The National School at Shirehampton is certainly of local interest as an example of a Church of England-led education movement, but in a national context it does not possess sufficient architectural quality or level of preservation required for listing. However, it is an attractive building and makes a positive contribution to the street scene and Conservation Area.’ Gil Osman

Avon (University Settlement) Community Association - Annual General Meeting

The AGM for the Avon (University Settlement) Community Association, which runs the Shire Advice Service, is taking place at Shirehampton Methodist Church hall on Wednesday 12th September at 7.15pm. This is an open meeting and we welcome anyone who wishes to attend and find out more about the work of this local charity.

Craft Exhibition

AS always this is a timely reminder to all craftspeople that the exhibition will be in the Public Hall, opening to the public on Tuesday 23rd October to Saturday 27th.

Application forms will appear in the next edition of ‘Shire’. If you are seasoned exhibitors we look forward to seeing your latest creations but we also welcome and even urge new entries to add to the diversity of the display. Residents of Avonmouth, Lawrence Weston and Sea Mills as well as Shirehampton are encouraged to take part. Don’t be shy, if you have craft skills please share them with those who don’t but enjoy seeing what they are missing!

Summer Reading Scheme Gets Into the ‘Story Lab’

YOUNG readers are invited to get into the ‘Story Lab’ this summer and discover a world of books, imagination, suspense and surprise.

As part of a national campaign, Bristol Libraries will be promoting the 2012 ‘Story Lab’ Summer Reading Challenge. The challenge is simple - to read six or more library books over the summer.

Young readers can take part by visiting local libraries from now until to September 7, where they will find incentives, activities and events designed to create excitement around children’s reading.

Extended At Home Service for Bristol Libraries Launches

Bristol Libraries will be reaching even more library users in their own homes following the launch of an extended ‘at home’ service. The service will deliver books to residents across Bristol and it will now also be increasing the number of customers who receive books delivered to their doorstep, free of charge.

The service is specifically targeted at those library customers who find themselves housebound and unable to access their local library. Under the scheme, borrowers will be asked what they would like to read and will then be left a crate or bag, of books, including audio books, to suit.

Someone from the service will call every four weeks to change the books, usually on the same day and at the same time. On each visit, service-users will be left a card advising them when the next visit will be. The service includes free reservations and free delivery.

More than 100 residents across the city had previously benefited from the At Home service and that number has now been increased to around 185 with further additions to the service planned. Further developments will mean that the number of customers currently using the service will more than triple.

Councillor Guy Poultney, Cabinet member for Communities, said: "Investing our resources into extending the ‘At Home Service’ will benefit people across the city who are most in need and unable to access their local library now. "More than ever we must invest in our libraries. These community hubs are a resource that have benefited generations of Bristolians"

LinkAge Activities Prove a Popular Choice For All

DURING July I was given the opportunity to go along to several activities organised by LinkAge that included Paper Crafts, Line Dancing and Gardening, all of which were introduction taster sessions that ran throughout the month and proved very popular indeed.

LinkAge is a charitable organisation that aims to involve and inspire people to enjoy and make the most of life. It challenges social isolation that seems to effect the older generations by helping to set up positive local activities for the over 55’s. With reduced social contact, being alone or isolated, this can result in reduced quality of life, but by encouraging people to attend local activities, this allows them to communicate with those in similar situation, keep active both physically and mentally and embrace a sense of local community.

Many of the local activities and events run by LinkAge throughout Bristol have a nominal fee payable that is used only to pay the cost of running the activities and you can book on a week to week basis.

Although initially aimed at the over 55’s age group, future projects are in the pipeline that will bridge the generations, so teenagers and above can learn from older people and the younger people can help them with new skills, exchanging life experiences.

The first event I attended was Paper Craft. - Card making, flowers and mosaics are just some examples - This ‘social’ class where I made new friends saw card making using all sorts of stars, shapes, beads, tissue and coloured paper, for example. With a cuppa, biscuits and plenty of chat and banter the afternoon passed very quickly. It was certainly a productive day where we took our creations home with us and also look forward to the following week so we could meet up with new friends.

Line Dancing was the following afternoon where I learned I had two left feet or maybe I should blame Sandra White for distracting me too much! I’ve never done line dancing before but with all these activities laid on, despite taking photos for the Shire, they had to be experienced first hand too and it was great fun. An hour of line dancing will help you keep moving, flexible, fit and share a few laughs too when you get the dance steps wrong.

Photo: Kathryn Courtney

Photo: Kathryn Courtney

The third activity was Gardening class a couple days later. Me and gardening don’t get along very well but having taken mum along too thought I’d listen in and learn one or two things along the way. I now know how to deadhead a dahlia, arrange a pot of flowers and next week will cover hanging baskets that mum is going along to.

All three events are highly sociable, great fun, with new friendships being forged. Refreshments and biscuits are provided. Classes are relatively cheap ranging from £2 for the Paper Craft, £3.50 for the Line Dancing and £3.50 for Gardening, for each person and the various activities took place at Penpole Community Centre, Oaktree Court. More activities are being planned for the future and LinkAge also have a volunteer scheme if you’d like to help out with any of their activities.

Although advisable to phone and book, attendance is flexible, so if you miss a week because you have a hospital appointment, classes are easily picked up again the following week. These activities are expected to restart in September so keep an eye out in the Shire ‘What’s On’ listing for more information. You can also check out the LinkAge web site for further details at or ring their office on 0117 9741691.

In addition Healthy Walks for the over 55’s will be coming to Shirehampton. There will be four different levels of walks with level 1 more suited to those with mobility issues and need to rest at regular intervals or have to use walking aids, through to level 4 which is more ambitious for those who like a bit of a challenge. One of the first walks to take place is on the 16th August (at the time of going to press the walk area has not been confirmed) and Cheryl Martin is the Health Walks Co-Coordinator. You can contact Cheryl for further information on: 07530 564332 or e-mail her at:

Kathryn Courtney

End of an era for Auto Parts as Dave Ford retires

Photo: Kathryn Courtney

Photo: Kathryn Courtney

Auto Parts has been one of the longest running business’s in Shirehampton and started life in Station Road in 1969 with original owner Joe Eccles before moving to the High Street a few years ago.

In April 1971 David Ford was employed by Joe and became a familiar face in the community for over forty years serving behind the counter of Auto Parts handing over car spares and giving out valuable advice. You’d even see Dave outside the shop from time to time with his head under the bonnet of a car trying to resolve a problem that a customer had with his or her vehicle. When Joe retired Dave took over the business but on the 30th June 2012 Auto Parts closed as Dave decided to take the opportunity of retirement and move on to what can only be considered to be a busier lifestyle!

I’ve known Dave ever since I was a child. My Dad and my Uncle Fred were regular customers to the shop and I was normally in tow. Speaking from personal experience Dave was always helpful, knowledgeable and you could always share a laugh with him. If an item you wanted wasn’t in stock he’d get it in that afternoon or the following morning at the latest. Nothing was too much trouble. Basically he was one of the permanent fixtures and fittings of the village who will be sorely missed.

I decided that Dave Ford could not leave the village without me doing a short interview with him to mark his time in Shirehampton and here it is. His story in his own words, minus my questions of course.

"I joined Auto Parts in Shirehampton in April 1971. I was originally a mechanic for eight years before going into a shop so I had quite a bit of knowledge about cars that I could help customers with. I’ve enjoyed my job in the shop since day one. I enjoy the selling and I enjoy the company of the customers."

"One of my best memories of Auto Parts I suppose was the change, when the business took off in the 70s, building the business up from nothing to employing six people on the Saturday, mainly part-timers and making a lot of friends out of it as well. Now that I’ve decided to retire I know I shall miss the people, definitely. I’ve made a lot of friends rather than customers and I will miss the job itself, I have enjoyed it, definitely enjoyed it all the time I have been here in Shirehampton."

When I asked Dave what he thought the people of Shirehampton are going to miss about him he began to laugh. "Oh, hard to say. I think a lot consider me, not only me but the other people who worked at Auto Parts for being helpful in whatever problem they brought to us weather it be car, pram pushchair, whatever."

I then broached the subject of women and cars. Now I always found being a woman if you wandered into a shop like Auto spares, most men would treat you as not knowledgeable but with Dave, he was different. ‘You never treated women differently?’ "I don’t really know about that, I can’t answer that one, but no, I just treated them as a customer male or female, doesn’t make any difference really. A lot of women have more knowledge than some of the men I can assure you!" (and he started laughing.)

So what are Dave’s plans now, entering into retirement? "Oh don’t you worry about that, my wife has written the book already as to things I have to do with her help. Gardening, decorating, baby sitting for grandchildren who I love anyway. I’m going to be even busier than before, keeping me active" he says as he’s laughing about the prospect of his retirement. "But I’d like to thank all my customers for their loyal support over the years and I will miss them."

So there you have it an end of an era and Auto Parts is no more. Both Dave and the shop will be greatly missed but he has promised to return for the occasional visit and keep in touch with his friends he’s made over the years. Good luck Dave and enjoy your retirement.

Kathryn Courtney

Evergreens Day Trips

  • 21st August - Lynton and Lynmouth
  • 18th September - Moreton in Marsh and Bourton on the Water
  • 16th October - Swansea
  • 2nd January 2013 - Pantomime at the Playhouse Theatre, Weston-Super-Mare.

Congratulations to Alderman Celia Lukins

IN May 2012 Mrs Lukins, a retired civil servant, who served as a councillor between 1990 and 2002 in the Avonmouth Ward received the Honorary Title of Alderman.

She was best known for a rebuilding programme of the popular pre-fabs. She was also responsible for leading the massive rebuilding programme for the Horfield council estate where hundreds of homes had to be demolished because they suffered from concrete cancer. She was the first female councillor to be chair of the former Housing Committee and first female cabinet councillor for housing when the local government system was changed. Mrs Lukins said "I’m very proud of the achievements in the public and private sectors of housing which improved the quality of so many people’s lives while I was in office,"

Kings Weston Activity Group

AN open letter objecting to the proposed development of "Fairways", Penpole Lane

I write to you as Chair of the Kings Weston Action Group (KWAG) over a matter of great concern to our organisation: the proposed development of "Fairways", Penpole Lane (adjacent to the former Karakol site) into commercial business premises.

This site lies within the registered historic landscape of Kings Weston and is currently protected by Bristol City Planning Policies. KWAG objects to the principle of new development within the park. Appearance and design aside, we believe that any new buildings on this site would degrade the integrity of the historic estate and threaten our ambitions to restore key features such as the principal avenue from the house that once passed this spot.

KWAG was set up with the intention of conserving and enhancing the historic Grade II registered Kings Weston and Shirehampton Parks. We are working to develop a new vision for their future in consultation with the City, the National Trust, and the local community. Our remit is to promote the importance of the parkland and buildings across the city; to take action to maintain and conserve the historic features; to act as a lobby group to prevent further degradation and to secure a positive future for the whole estate. These proposals threaten our objectives.

As you know, our work so far has involved a fresh reappraisal of the development and importance of the estate. We have built up a collection of ideas for future development of Kings Weston as a public green space, and organised working parties to ensure the proper maintenance of the grounds. Based on our own research and the discovery of a number of previously overlooked historic features we continue to endeavour to increase the present Grade II registered landscape status to Grade II*.

KWAG is currently working with Bristol City Council on a new Conservation Management Plan. Due to be completed in draft form shortly, the CMP is likely to reiterate that future development of the areas within the Registered Historical Landscape is unacceptable, that steps should be made to reverse the decay and fragmentation of ownership, that existing features are conserved and lost features are restored. In addition to any proposed development being counter to Council planning policy, KWAG believe an approval on this site would set an unacceptable precedent for intrusive development within other historic landscapes under the City’s protection.

I must remind you of a key objection from English Heritage regarding previous planning applications on this site. I quote directly:

"Whilst we fully acknowledge that this area of the King’s Weston park is already degraded and compromised by the existing development, it nevertheless still constitutes the designed setting of the grade 1 - listed King’s Weston House, regardless of whether the site is visible from the primary heritage asset or not. Any proposal to increase the level of development within the designed landscape would only serve to further erode its integrity, and to further harm the significance of the heritage asset, and, we would suggest, would be in conflict with Government guidance as laid out in P.P.S.5 particularly Policy HE10."

We do not accept the argument that the proposed buildings will not adversely affect either the character of the park or our ambitions to reinstate the critically important axial avenue between the main house and Shirehampton Road passing through this site. We express here our rejection of these proposals. David Martyn Chair for and on behalf of the King’s Weston Action Group.

Avonmouth Football Club

AVONMOUTH Football Club was formed in 1919 under the name of ‘Avonmouth St Andrews’, playing our early football in the Bristol Church of England League. First mention of Avonmouth in the Bristol Suburban League was in the early 1920’s, playing in the Junior Divisions and this is the league all three adult Saturday team currently play.

Our first pitch was not too far from where we are now, just off the main road in Avonmouth, before moving to West Town Road in 1930 where a sports ground had been built and provided by Dr Napier Miles for the recreation of the people of Avonmouth. The building of the M5 motorway destroyed the West Town Road sports ground and in 1967 another home had to be found. Home games were played at the Portway Playing Field and Eastville Park, before a more permanent move to Canford Park (Westbury-On-Trym) was completed. We did not return to Avonmouth and our current ground until 1986, when it became available after being vacated by Avonmouth Rugby Club.

The club had became well known for the quality and success of its ‘Annual Dinners’ and had been able to attract such names as Joe Mercer (England & Coventry) Fred Ford (Bristol Rovers & Bristol City) and Capt. A Prince Cox (Bristol Rovers) as guest speakers, as well as having players who went on to the professional level of the game, these being Josser Watling (Bristol Rovers) and Roy Bentley (England, Bristol City, Newcastle United, Chelsea and Reading) all played for ‘The Mouth’ in immediate Post War years.

We moved to the Bristol and District League in 1936 winning Division 2 in the first season (1936-37) and were allowed to field sides in both the District and Suburban Leagues just after the 1939-45 war. A return to the Suburban League in 1952 allowed us to win the Division One title in 1953-54, with the clubs highlight being able to finally win the Premier One title in 2006-07, under then manager Darren Harvey, after coming close on a number of occasions in the nineties and in 2001-02 season. The club between 1989-1991 hosted a number of GFA and Bosley Cup finals at our King George V ground and were also hosts to the Wessex Sunday League Cup finals in 1990, 1991 and 1992 seasons. We reached the Bosley League Cup in 2001, although ending runners up after losing to St Aldhelms.

In 2007-08 Avonmouth embarked again on progressing in the youth side of the game by having a youth team represent the club. The team is managed by former player/manager Tony Beecham and has proved very successful having won their respective league(s) four years on the bounce (2008,2009,2010,2011) and reaching the Gloucestershire FA County Cup Final, finishing runners up after losing 2-1 to Bristol City JSC.

The club also hosts a annual tournament every year now that started in memory of Evelyn Rowley and first started in 1974. It attracts a lot of local support and some eye catching football, is ideal for pre-season fitness and has become a great success over the years with local charities receiving donations from the club. In 2011 we introduced ‘The Sam Brimson Award’, for the man of the match of the final in his memory after he died from an illness last year. This year’s tournament starts a new chapter for the club in its 93rd year after recruiting Paul Armstrong as manager this summer. There is a lot of excitement around with the hope the club can finally achieve Gloucestershire County League status in the near future as they are certainly moving in the right direction, with improvement still ongoing.

The Evelyn Rowley fixtures are below and we would love to have the local people come and enjoy the football, with the bar and food available on all dates.

  • Saturday AUGUST 4th 2012
    • Avonmouth V Sea Mills, 12.00 kick off
    • Lawrence Weston V Severn Beach, 15.00 kick off
  • Sunday AUGUST 5th 2012
    • Henbury OB V Southmead Athletic
    • Shirehampton V Stoke Gifford Utd
  • Tuesday AUGUST 9th 2012 - Semi Final, 18.30 kick off
  • Wednesday AUGUST 11th 2012 - Semi Final, 18.30 kick off
  • Saturday AUGUST 11th 2012 - Third placed Final, 12.00 kick off

Secretary Chris George would like to any former players or followers to contact him with any history on the club or pictures via his email and why not visit their website

Bristol - Avonmouth Sea Cadets Celebrate The Organisation's 156 Years

SEA CADETS from Bristol Avonmouth celebrated the Sea Cadet’s 156th birthday on June 25 and their own 70th anniversary later this year! To celebrate the Junior Cadets baked cakes from a recipe specially designed by Fiona Cairns, who created the Royal wedding cake for Kate and William, and served them up to the rest of the unit.

The Saturdays, James Cracknell, Gary Neville, Helen Skelton, Barney Harwood and Jessie Ware are just some who have voiced their support for Sea Cadets with birthday messages. Said Helen Skelton "I love a challenge from time to time but you guys face them daily with pride, passion and perseverance. What a great organisation. Big birthday wishes to you all!"

We’ve been inspiring and challenging young people through nautical adventure for 156 years and we are thrilled that so many stars have wished us Happy Birthday.

We are the UK’s largest maritime youth charity established in 1856 and we work across the country in 400 towns with 14000 Sea Cadets aged between 10 and18. Cadets learn vital life skills like leadership and team working via nautical adventure activities, and can earn extra qualifications which help boost confidence and give young people a head start in life. visit

September 2012 sees Avonmouth unit sees the start of a year of celebrations to mark the 70th anniversary of the unit’s creation. The Royal Navy gave financial support to the Sea Cadet Corps for the first time in late1942 allowing the organisation to expand into more units or divide large ones such as Bristol into more locally based units. We are always keen to hear from former cadets and staff, especially in this significant year. We can be contacted at the unit, TS Enterprise, Station Road, Shirehampton BS11 9XA or via the website’s contact page.

HQ Facebook:
HQ Twitter: @SeaCadetsUK

Shirehampton Health Club

Try Sailing Day Sunday 12th August 2012 1 to 4 pm

BBQ from 1 pm - Sailing from 2 pm. Try sailing as crew in a sailing dinghy. Safety gear and safety boat provided. All welcome - children with an adult please. Come along on the day or book a half hour sail before hand.

Phone Bob Hayes 0117 9422906 for details.

As with all sailing what we do will depend on the weather on the day!

Shirehampton Sailing Club, Station Road (off the Portway), Shirehampton

LDub & Shire’s Got Talent!

A Charity Night with disco, Tombola and free barbecue will be held at at Lawrence Weston Youth centre on Saturday 11th August 5 - 10pm. Adults £1.50 Children £1.

Anyone can enter the talent show by contacting 07874266833 or 07827307746. The Lord Mayor will be in attendance and all proceeds will to charity. The event is being organised by Adam Wheaton a Community Police Officer based at Avonmouth Police Station.

Pre-School says ‘Thank you’

Station Road Pre-School would like to say a big thank you to Marc Lee at LHP Accountants, 3 Rear Mews, Station Road for auditing the accounts for us. It is appreciated, especially by the treasurer who needs the accounts audited for the charity commission. Brilliant work, efficient as ever, highly recommended by the Pre-School!

St Mary’s News

Hi Folks!

Will I hear the chatter and laughter of children outside in their Summer Holidays or will they all be confined indoors because of the never ending rain? I read in the newspaper the other day that some children are showing the sign of "Rickets" because of the lack of Vitamin D brought about lack of sunshine - and believe it or not the national TV News Bulletin today said there is now no official drought anywhere in Great Britain. I think we were already aware of that! But never fear I am sure the sun will be with us all soon!

Well, on the subject of rain I’m sorry to report that we had fine rain all day on the day of our Parish Outing to St. Fagan’s Folk Museum and Llandaff Cathedral. Nevertheless, we all enjoyed a super Lunch in the private section of the Museum Restaurant and afterwards some of our brave souls did venture outside around the grounds to admire the many buildings which have been preserved for posterity. Later on during the afternoon we were picked up in the Coach again for the short journey to Llandaff Cathedral. Here we were given a conducted tour of the Cathedral which was restored in the late 1950’s following bomb damage by a Land Mine during World War II. Our Guide told us it was the second most badly damaged Cathedral during the War - the worst being Coventry Cathedral. After the tour we adjourned to the nearby Church House where we all enjoyed High Tea and at 6.00 pm we returned to the Cathedral for Choral Evensong which was sung by the Cathedral Choir. As with all Cathedral Choirs the singing was magnificent. When Evensong was over it was back on the Coach again for the journey back to Shirehampton - and yes you guessed it - there was still fine rain falling - but we certainly did not let it spoil our day!

Now for some news which did sadden me very much - I have to tell you that Roy Miller - a good staunch churchman, a member of our Area Choir and friend, sadly died in June. I cannot remember a time when I did not know Roy. Over the years he had been subjected to much leg pulling and banter in this column by me. I find it hard to believe that a man who kept himself so physically fit is no longer with us. I used to pull his leg about being a Bristol Rovers Supporter and his pounding along the pavement in his shorts displaying a blur of hairy legs frightening all the cats, dogs and young children in the parish! Never did he take offence - and we used to have a good laugh together. Roy was always immaculately turned out in his appearance and had a military bearing which always made him stand out in a crowd. I attended his Memorial Service at St. Mary’s - which was certainly a celebration of his life and true to the last amongst the flowers was a Blue and White Football! Goodbye Roy - we shall all miss you but we will never forget you and our deepest sympathy and prayers are with his wife June, sons David & Jason and their respective families.

Now, here are some details of events which will be taking place during "sunny August"! On Saturday, 4th. August we are holding our annual Bric-a-Brac Sale from 10.00 am until 12.00 noon in St. Mary’s. In the past we have often been pleasantly surprised as to how much money this will bring in for church funds as well as provide goods for eagle -eyed shoppers. Please put the date in your Diary and come and have a browse around.

Just under a week later we shall be enjoying another of the "Tim Forder’s Car Treasure Hunts" - which will start from the Health Centre Car Park on Friday evening the 10th. August. This year the "hunt" will be a round trip ending back at the Health Centre Car Park and all participants will then adjourn to The Tithe Barn for a Buffet Supper. I could be wrong - but I believe this may be the first official use of the Tithe Barn for a Social Event. If you wish to partake, then sign up on the list which is on display at the back of the Church.

Our Seniors Week this year (which is fully booked) is from Monday 20th to Friday 24th.August and will be held in the church as per usual. You can be assured you will receive jolly good meals and Entertainment in one form or another. It has always been a tradition to have one day out and this year I can reveal we shall be taking a Coach to Ross-on-Wye. Here we shall have a 3 course Lunch followed by a Cream Tea at The Wilton Court Hotel - which I am told is a splendid place to spend some time!

August Bank Holiday Monday this year is on the 27th. August and we shall once again have an Open Church Day with Lunches and Cream Teas served from 12.00 noon until 5.00 pm. This will be the last one for this year - so if you missed the other Open Days here is your chance to enjoy good company and good food!

For anyone who may be interested in learning about the Christian faith and what we stand for please keep an eye open for details of the next Alpha Course which is due to commence again in early September in St. Mary’s Church. Each Course begins with a Supper - which is held once a week for 10 weeks. If you are interested our Lay Minister - Gill Sawyer will gladly supply you with details of the Course and when it is to commence. She can be contacted at the Church Office which is within the church building.

Although the main holidays will be upon us during August this does not mean that St. Mary’s will closing down. Messy Church, which is extremely popular with the children, - will continue as per normal and Tea and Coffee will be available during the weekday mornings and afternoons - but Stomp; Tot Stop and Girls Group will not be meeting in August. But don’t forget when the church is open your children are more than welcome to come in and play with with our excellent variety of toys which are always available in "The Children’s Corner" while Mum or Dad can partake in a cup of Tea or Coffee and a biscuit.

On Friday evening 6th. July a Farewell Service of Choral Evensong was held in Bristol Cathedral to commemorate the long period of service The Venerable Tim McClure - Archdeacon of Bristol has given to the Diocese and who is now to retire to Cumbria. The hymns were chosen by Archdeacon Tim as were the Readings. He also preached a very amusing Sermon describing the Robes the Clergy wear and what is often hidden underneath them. He went on to say that someone present had managed to conceal a Radio under theirs and he was delighted to announce to all present that Andy Murray had reached the Wimbledon Tennis Final. There was rapturous applause and cheers around the Cathedral! The music for the Service was sung by six Lay Clerks from the Cathedral choir. Once again it was a pleasure to listen to and it is amazing just how high male Alto’s can sing! After the Service was over speeches and presentations were made. Bishop Mike handed Archdeacon Tim an envelope with a Cheque from the parishes within the Diocese and insisted it contained Argos Vouchers! This was followed by splendid refreshments served in the South Aisle of the Cathedral. We wish Archdeacon Tim well in his new life in Cumbria as he is going to use his spare time restoring an old Farmhouse in which he and his wife are to live.

Well, that’s it for another month - this story is allegedly from Yorkshire! A small boy went into church with he Grandma. Grandma knelt down to pray on entry and the little boy knelt down beside her. After a few seconds had passed he said, "Grandma - who are we hiding from? ‘Bye for now - C.M.E.

From the Registers at St. Mary's - June 2012

BAPTISMS ‘We welcome you’

  • 17th - Max Staynings, Mia Staynings
  • 24th - Zoe Evans, Victoria Jobbins, Harlem-Dante Dobbins

WEDDINGS ‘All that I am I give to you’

  • 30th - Katie Dixon and Paul Mathisen

FUNERALS ‘At rest & at peace’

  • 8th - Roy Peters - Canford
  • 12th - Alice Webber - St. Mary’s
  • 19th - Margaret Whittaker - Canford
  • 20th - David Johnson - Canford
  • 22nd - Betty Froude - St. Mary’s
  • 27th - Irene Hadley - St. Mary’s, Albert Scanlon - Canford
  • 28th - Roy Miller - St. Mary’s
  • 29th - Joyce Hannan - St. Mary’s

THE weather may not be at its best at the moment but vegetables are thriving at Tynings Field and there is plenty more to plant before the Summer season is over, although with the constant presence of rain Summer appears to have been delayed somewhat!

Photo: Kathryn Courtney

Photo: Kathryn Courtney

On the 20th June we had a large number of volunteers from Lloyds Bank arrive to help out as part of the workers volunteer day. It proved to be highly successful with a lot of work completed in the field that day. First task was to move the chicken coop further up the field and provide our chickens with a larger run with plenty of space for them to move about. The volunteers did an excellent job. They also dug over some plots of land, planted some rhubarb and a couple willow trees too which will eventually form a picnic/family area for people visiting Tynings Field. Thank you to all involved.

On the 28th June the local Scouts from the 191st Scout Group arrived at Tynings Field. They made four wonderful Scarecrows to help keep the birds away from our crops. They did an excellent job as you will see from the photo. I don’t know who enjoyed themselves most whilst spending time at the field, the boys or the adults but Caroline and Annalise spoke to them about the produce being grown, there was a strawberry tasting session and they were also introduced to the chickens. We’d like to say a huge thank you to the boys of the 191st Scout Group for all their hard work in making the Scarecrows, their Scout Leader Grant and their helpers for installing them in the field.

Tynings Field Community Group now have a regular stall at Westbury-on-Trym Country Market every Friday that takes place at the local church hall at the bottom of Westbury Hill from 8am until 12 noon. We hope to meet some of you there sometime. We’ll have also taken part in the Shirehampton Jubilee Fair, Henbury Flower Show and Avonmouth Party In The Park too by the time of going to print.

If you are unable to attend any of the events we go to we are still able to sell vegetables and eggs to you at competitive prices. Dare we say our produce is the best grown in Shirehampton? Why not find out for yourself and ring us on 0117 9090440. We’ll be able to tell you what seasonal vegetables we have available and a delivery to the local Shirehampton area can be arranged for Wednesday evenings.

Lawn Mower Appeal

The grass is constantly growing and strimming and manually cutting the grassy area of the field can at the best of times be challenging. We are looking for a fully working second hand petrol lawn mower at a reasonable to help keep the grass under control. If anyone could help us out with this request please call us on: 0117 9090440

Why not come along and join us as a volunteer or a member.

If there are any Community Groups or Minority Groups who would like to have their own vegetable plot and have a go at growing their own potatoes, beans, cabbages, beetroot and other produce please get in contact with Tynings Field Community Group to discuss further. It’s a great opportunity to learn how to grow your own food and work together as a team with a satisfactory end result.

Many of our volunteers and members seem to be women and we are looking for more men to join up even if it’s only a couple hours or so a month. So come on gentlemen don’t be shy, if you love your own garden and growing your own fruit and vegetables or even flowers why not come along to Tynings Field and help out too?! Meet new people, make it sociable. Main workdays are Sunday from 10am onwards, Tuesday and Wednesday from 2pm onwards. The annual cost to join Tynings Field Community Group is £5.00 and you also have a share of the fruits and vegetables that is grown in the field but need to be able to spare on hour or two on a regular basis. However volunteers are always welcome to come along to get stuck in with the digging and planting. For further information please telephone Tynings Field Community Group: 0117 9090440

Don’t forget to check out our web page Error! Hyperlink reference not valid. and ‘like’ our page. Here you’ll find the latest photographs charting the progress of Tynings Field Community Group plus you can keep updated with the latest news and events about the group.

Kathryn Courtney

Christmas Lights

The Lights committee would like to thank the people of Priory Road for the donation to the Christmas lights from their Jubilee Street Party. C Rich

Shirehampton Group Practice

DO You Look After Someone Who Depends on You - A Spouse, Elderly Relative or Disabled Child?

Jill Cooper, a volunteer from The Carers Support Centre will be coming to Shirehampton Health Centre on a regular basis. The next two sessions have been confirmed but please see notice boards for further information and dates:

  • Tuesday 31st July, 9.30am to 11.30pm
  • Tuesday 14th August, 9.30am to 11.30pm

If you have any questions, would like advice and information or just a listening ear, then please come along. No appointment is required, just turn up. Jill will be around in the waiting room but a private room is available for discussions if necessary.

Letters to the Editor

Funds Raised

Dear Editor,

Peter Grant of Shirehampton recently did a Sponsored 24 hour Silence in order to raise funds for Prostate Cancer Research. A total of £174.50 was raised. A cheque for this amount was sent to Cancer Research UK, Oxford OX4 2WB. Thank you to ALL those who donated to this worthy cause, it was very much appreciated.

Best wishes, Peter Grant

100th Birthday

Dear Editor,

I would like to thank everyone who made my 100th birthday so enjoyable, including the Port of Bristol Retired Association committee who put on an outstanding buffet for members. Thank you for the flowers, gifts and good wishes. Once again, thanks for a lovely, happy afternoon.

Phyllis Jewell

Shirehampton Community Action Forum

Looking for new Trustees

Would you like to help SCAF in a key role as a Trustee?

We are looking for new Trustees to join our Board

The Trustees meet approx every 4-6 weeks at 6pm at Shire Public Hall - the meetings always finish by 8pm

If you would like further information, or would like to talk it over please contact

David Thomas (Chair) on 982 2941 or email

Cotswold Community Association

The Cotswold Community Association would like to thank Craig West Turf of Avonmouth for the kindness and generosity shown during the transformation of the garden area. We couldn’t have done it without them. So thanks again to Sean and his staff for making it possible.

Richard Livingstone, CCA

Upon Butterfly Wings

I would like to say a big THANK YOU to all the ladies in Shirehampton who have very kindly been knitting for this charity. I have now taken 2 large bags of items to both Southmead and St Michael’s Hospitals and they were both very pleased to receive them. I am sure that the parents will be grateful for the items and will know that they have all been made with love.

Many thanks Pat Davidson (Mrs)

Shop Locally

Having purchased a new front door from Bristol Window Centre, St Phillips in December 2011 after the old one of 50 years had passed its ‘sell-by’ date I later discovered the lock had broken causing a lot of problems. On trying to contact this company I found the phone was cut off and Trading Standards are investigating them. Anyone in Shirehampton who have had dealings with this firm beware. The very pleasant owners of Bristol Services in Shirehampton High Street quickly replaced the broken lock at a very reasonable price, so it would pay to ask around and where possible shop locally.

Mike Antill

Sea Mills Amdram

SMAD (Sea Mills Amdram) meet on a Tuesday evening and Sunday afternoon at Sea Mills Community Centre; our Summer show Stars in their eyes vs Legends is on Fri 10th August and Sat 11th August. We will be starting rehearsals for our Christmas Pantomime ‘Aladdin’ shortly after and are looking for any budding actors, musicians, dancers singers etc to take part. For further info please contact Nick on 07876 495909 or Angie on 07852 861961. Nick White

The Lamplighters

The Conservation Advisory Panel considered a pre-application submission for the Lamplighters and this is what was minuted:

The Panel is not opposed to some degree of development on this site but considered the application is unacceptable on design grounds for a number of reasons. The scheme is over scaled, which makes the form appear overly bulky. The detailing is bland and the fenestration design is weak. The design degrades the setting of the listed building. A mechanism must be found to ensure that funds created by the enabling development be spent on the restoration of the Lamplighters building.

The Conservation Advisory Panel (CAP) meets to consider pre application and planning applications. The panel comprises representatives from planning/conservation groups for some of the 33 Conservation Areas in Bristol, and from other organisations interested in Conservation, such as Avon Industrial Buildings Trust, Bristol Industrial Archeological Society, English Heritage, Bristol Visual and Environmental Group, Council for the preservation of Ancient Bristol, Georgian Society, Victorian Society, Landscape Institute and Bristol Civic Society.

Conservation Officers, Urban Design officers and the Executive member may also attend the meeting. The minutes and agenda for the meetings are posted on the Bristol City Council Website on the Council - minutes, agendas and reports page.

To see which cases are on the agenda for each meeting, and the minutes of discussions at previous meetings go to the Bristol City Council website link above. CAP is listed also under Other Meetings / Other bodies.

Lamplighters Marsh Seed Scattering Event

Sunday 9 September

Our next event in this year’s programme of the BCC Wildcity Project partnership with SCAF is a fun and informative seed scattering event around Lamplighters Marsh, to be led by local expert Rupert Higgins (who led our very popular & successful wildflower walk on 24th June)

So what is a seed scattering?... Rupert will help us identify wild flowers & grasses that we want to spread across areas of the Lamps Marsh with few flowers. We collect these seeds - so please bring a carrier bag - and then we scatter our collected seed on the areas we want to see a lovely array of wild flower growth in the next year or two!

WHEN: Sunday 9 September, meet outside the Lamps Pub for a 10.30 am start.

This is a free event, all welcome* & no need to book.

It will be mainly on flat path & suitable for wheelchairs.

*Children must be accompanied by an adult & well behaved dogs on leads please.

Should you require any further info please contact Ash at Shirehampton Community Action Forum (SCAF) on 0117 982 9963 or email

Messy Church

Messy Church with an Olympic Theme at Shirehampton Baptist Church.    Photo: Kathryn Courtney

Messy Church with an Olympic Theme at Shirehampton Baptist Church. Photo: Kathryn Courtney