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The Bridge March 2017

March in the Forest

At this time of year two of our less spectacular trees bring out their flowers. First is the blackthorn, which is the first hedgerow tree to blossom; the white 5-petalled blooms springing straight from dark twigs unadorned with new leaves. Left to its own devices blackthorn will produce a thicket of suckers well-armed with long, sharp spines. Marching out across woodland edges or unmown fields, they provide protection for other shrubs and trees, earning the French name mere du bois (mother of the woods). The leaves follow in April and the fertilised flowers become sloes, whose purple/black skins are dusted with a fine bloom of wild yeasts. The best sloe patch I know of was thrashed mercilessly by an overzealous hedge trimmer last year, so we’ll see whether the blossom appears as copiously this spring. The other tree is the yew. Whereas the blackthorn is small and somewhat transient the yew is solid, dark and capable of achieving a great age. In the Wyre Forest yew trees are well represented and may have served as boundary markers in some cases. The wood is certainly very hard and would probably not be worth the effort of felling.

It is hard to estimate the age of a yew tree, as they are slow-growing and often start to become hollow after a few hundred years. They are very often found in churchyards, but which came first? The Fortingall yew in Perthshire is reckoned to be between 2000 and 3000 years old but if you would like to see a much closer example of a venerable yew there is a hollow tree of 30 feet circumference, complete with bench inside, in Much Marcle churchyard, featured in Thomas Packenham’s Meetings with Remarkable Trees. Even nearer is the huge yew in Hope Bagot churchyard just below Clee Hill. The tree stands just above a holy well. Judging by the age of these ancient specimens it seems likely that they were revered in pre-Christian times and that the sites for church-building were chosen accordingly.

The yew, like the holly, is either male or female (‘dioecious’ is the proper word for this trait) and the flowers of each are fairly inconspicuous: small greeny-yellow tufts on the undersides of the leaf shoots. The male flowers shed clouds of pollen which are carried to other trees nearby and pollinate the female flowers there. Although a primitive conifer, the fruit is not borne by a cone but is the familiar red berry, whose flesh is said to be edible as long as you avoid eating the seed inside. As an interesting aside, the Fortingall yew was noticed in 2015 to have produced several upper shoots bearing berries, despite being a male tree: it was in effect changing sex! Linda Iles

Editorial News

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On Being a Determined Idiot.

As I bent to my task one dim grey afternoon last month, I reflected on that strange urge that comes over the sanest of us at times and which I was presently displaying. I first recognised it in my brother (not the most patient of men). In him, it manifests itself audibly in a series of tuts and tcha’s together with demands for someone to hold still, hold higher or just hold. A friend is more likely to glower darkly and snap if asked a question. Me, I sulk. Which is what I was doing as I tried to mend a hole in my nice red jumper. First I needed to thread a small needle with an outsize lump of wool. I sort of knew it wouldn’t go through the eye of such a small needle, but because I am frankly pants at anything domestic it was the only needle available in the house. I could wait; I could take it up to a capable needlewoman and plead; I could find a thinner piece of thread. But no; I was in the grip of what I have decided to call a Determination.

Now come on; you know you’ve been there. You have determined to do something. You don’t have the right gear or it’s really not the right time or it’s a ridiculous place to try and do it, but lost inside that determination, you insist on completion. It only ever ends badly, of course. That car being washed in the pouring rain needed a re-wash the next day. The book a friend bought even though he has never liked historical novels cost him many uncomfortable hours to read. The washing next door, hung out although a cold mist had settled in for the day, ended up wetter than when she hung it out. And that jumper? It has a sort of large pimple halfway down the sleeve. It rather proves that continuing a task until it is truly finished isn’t always such a great idea.

So watch out for my next editorial. It may only be two sentences long.


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Community News

March 2 Rock Pathfinders walk see page 29 3 Women’s World day of Prayer 7.30pm All Saints’ Church see page 43 4 Opening of exhibition The Changing Face of Load Street Bewdley Museum see page 37 4 Repair Café 10 - 2pm Kidderminster see page 17 5 Bewdley Footpaths walk 2pm see page 27 6 Knit and natter 10 - 12 All Saints’ Church 6 Bewdley Floral Art Club 7.30pm Wharton Park Golf and Country Club see page 35 7 Live Wyres meeting see page 37 8 Bewdley Evergreens 2 - 3.30pm Baptist Church see page 27 8 Bewdley Carnival Bewdley meeting 7.30pm see page 21 8 Friends of Riverside North Park AGM 7pm Guildhall see page 39 9 Craft Club 10 - 12 Bewdley Baptist Church see page 39 9 Mothers Union Talk 7.30pm St Anne’s Church 10 Bewdley Rotory Club - Doug Parker St George’s Hall see page 35 11 Greener Living Fair 10.30 - 2.30pm St George’s Hall see page 41 13 Book sale and knit and natter 10 - 12 All Saints’ Church see page 9 14 Rugrats Stay & Play see page 7 14 Bewdley Civic Society meeting 7.30pm St George’s Hall see page 23 14 Live Wyres meeting see page 37 16 Rock Pathfinders walk see page 29 18 Repair Café Bewdley St George’s Hall see page 17 18 Music in the Chapel Concert 7.30pm Bewdley Methodist Church see page 43 20 Bewdley Horticultural Society 7.30 pm Riverside Church, Dog Lane see page 23 20 Knit and natter 10 - 12 All Saints’ church 21 Live Wyres meeting see page 37 22 Craft session 10 - 12 All Saints’ Church 23 Live Wyres meeting see page 37 25 Mothers Day Tea 2 - 4pm Parish Rooms 23 Live Wyres meeting see page 37 28 Live Wyres meeting see page 37 29 Knit and Natter 10 - 12 All Saints’ church 29 Bewdley & Wribbenhall Ladies Lunch Club see page 27 April 1 Clothing for Refugees Sorting Day 2 - 4pm St Anne's Church see page 35 1 Repair Café 10 - 2pm Kidderminster see page 17 2 Messy Church see page 7 2 Bewdley Footpaths walk 2pm see page 27 3 W.I. meeting 7.30pm St George's Hall see page 11 12 Friends of Bewdley Museum talk 2.30pm St George’s Hall see page 37 15 Repair Café 10 - 2pm Bewdley St George’s Hall see page 17 5





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Bewdley Church Servicesl

St Anne’s Church Load Street

Riverside Church

Sundays at 9.30am Lasts for about an hour. Music is usually a mix of contemporary and traditional. Separate activities for children and young people during the service. Wednesday Worship at 10.15am Morning prayer. Holy Communion on 1st Wednesday

St George’s Hall, Load St. Sundays at 10.30 Friendly and fun for all regardless of age or background, our family service lasts for about an hour and a half and has both modern and traditional worship followed by a short time of easy to follow bible teaching.

Sunday at 9.30am A warm welcome to a traditional service that lasts about an hour. First Sunday 8.00am Said Holy Communion Join us on the first Monday of the month at 7.00pm for a short service of Compline.

Sundays at 11.15am Holy Communion on first Sunday of each month. Matins from the Book of Common Prayer on the other Sundays. A friendly welcome to a traditional service in a peaceful setting.

St Leonard’s Church Ribbesford

All Saints’ Church Wribbenhall

Bewdley Baptist Church

Bewdley Methodist Church

High Street Sundays at 10am A relaxed style of worship with lively music for all ages. Sundays at 6.30pm: varied types of services. Church Office 01299 403267

High Street Sundays at 10.30am A warm welcome to all for traditional worship in a friendly atmosphere. Monthly Sunday Club for children. Revd Phil Hoar 01299 826641

Holy Family Catholic Church

Religious Society of Friends (Quakers) Meeting House Lower Park Sunday 10.30-11.30am A quiet, contemplative form of worship, with occasional ‘spoken ministry’. Children’s Meeting have their own activity before joining in the Meeting.

High Street Sunday Mass at 8am Tuesday and Thursday Mass 10am Holy Days of Obligation Mass 12 noon Local contact Deacon John O’Brien Parish Office 01299 822633

St Andrew’s Button Oak Details of services at

Wish to book a wedding at All Saints’, St. Leonard’s or St. Anne’s? Please call Roz Mace on 01299 401605 or to arrange an appointment. Thinking about a Church of England baptism? For St. Anne’s and St. Leonard’s, come to the 9.30am Sunday service at St. Anne’s. For All Saints’, come to the 9.30am Sunday service at All Saints’ Wribbenhall. We’ll chat over coffee. 7





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Severnside School of Dancing

Classes in Ballet, Tap, Modern, Classical Greek, and Acrobatic Dance held at the Wheatsheaf Room, Bewdley Institute Special Junior hour Fridays 4-5 Training for Festivals and exams Contact Joyce Campbell on 01299 400633 Like us in Facebook


• BHS qualified instruction • Excellent Facilities • Well schooled horses and ponies • Friendly, relaxed atmosphere • Small class sizes

The deadline for the April issue of The Bridge is 10th March

Phone Adele on: 07799 761 932 Alton Piece, Dark Lane, Rock, Worcs, DY14 9YN

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Church News l

St Anne’s Children and Family Friendly Activities Regular and upcoming activities. * Sunday Gang - Kid’s session during 9.30am service. * Cuppa and Chat - Mondays 8:45-9.45am - Fun House, St. Anne’s School - pop in for a hot drink and a chat after dropping the kiddies off. * Kidz Club - Mondays after school - 4:30pm - St. Anne’s School hall - fun, games, craft & challenges for children in years 1 - 6. * Rugrats Stay & Play - Tuesdays 9.30 - 11.30am - St. George’s Hall - For under 5’s, parents and carers. (Starts 14th March) * Messy Church - Fun, food and fellowship for the family on first Sunday of the month 4-6pm - Starts 2nd April (Venue TBC - see April Bridge) For more info contact Kim Leach - 07850038307 or or like our facebook page: @BewdleyChildrenFamilyActivities to receive updates.

Do you need to hire a meeting room?

Then Bewdley Baptist Church may have just what you need. We have several light, warm, well furnished rooms in the Church building (all on the ground floor), which we can rent out for one off or regular bookings. The Church’s Main Hall with balcony and stage can seat about 200 people and the floor area can be cleared to give a large, carpeted space. There is audio-visual equipment available and disabled access to the carpeted Back Hall, which can seat approximately 40 people and can also be cleared of chairs for maximum versatility. There is an adjoining well equipped kitchen. The Cottage fronts the High Street and is at the entrance to the Church. It has been recently renovated to a high standard with disabled access, toilet and kitchen. There are two small adjoining rooms seating up to about 20 people in total and is ideal for small meetings or children’s parties. It opens directly on to the Church’s enclosed courtyard garden. Terms for hiring these premises are very competitive and we offer 50% discount for charitable or non-charging events. If you would like to view the facilities or need any further information about availability, terms and conditions please contact: Tom Cox (Minister in Training) or Mary Farmer on: Telephone: 01299 403267 Email:

You are invited to join us at Riverside Elim

River Tots - Mondays & Fridays 9.15 - 11.30 am All are welcome; just turn up. Enjoy a relaxed atmosphere, grab a hot drink and meet other parents who are in the same boat as you. A safe and enjoyable place for your children to come and play. Youth @ Riverside - Wednesdays 7.00 - 8.30pm For school years 7 - 11. A night of fun games and laughter. Every Wednesday we meet to let off a bit of mid week steam with our high school students. The night is relaxed with a monthly theme. Young Adults Coffee Society Sunday 6.30 - 9.30pm For ages 17 - 30. Meeting twice a month for coffee, music and thought provoking conversation. Stay as long or as short a time as you would like. For further info contact, call the office on 01299 405535 or visit 9






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Church News l

All Saints’ Church Kidderminster Road Wribbenhall

After our 9.30am service on Sundays we offer coffee and chat. The Knit and Natter group meets from 10-12 noon, Mondays, except bank holidays Our next Book sale is on Monday 13th March 10-noon. The Bewdley Womens' World day of Prayer service is at 7pm at All Saints' on Friday 3rd March Sunday 5th March there will be a 8am Said Communion Service. There will be no 9.30am service. Instead a 10.30am united service at St Anne's Saturday 25th March from 2pm til 4pm in the Parish Rooms a Mothers' Day tea will be held. Admission by ticket only. Tel. Gail 01299401685 for further information Sunday 26th March The Mothering Sunday Service will be a benefice service at 10.30am

Religious Society of Friends (Quakers)

Friends Fellowship of Healing followed by a simple lunch on the second Wednesday of the month. Midweek Meeting for Worship 12 noon on the last Wednesday of the month. Meeting for Worship 7.30 - 8.15pm on the second Wednesday of the month Evening Meeting for Worship 7.00pm on the last Thursday of the month in Kidderminster Thursday Craft Group meets fortnightly 2.00 - 4.00 pm

For further information please contact: Clerk of Meeting 01562 741501 Bewdley Meeting website:

You’re always welcome at Bewdley Methodist Church As well as our services on Sunday at 10.30am we offer:

Knit & Natter – friendship and company while doing something worthwhile. Meet at church from 2.00-4.00pm on the second Thursday of each month. Walking Group – gentle exercise and fellowship in our local countryside. Meet at 10.30am on the third Tuesday of each month. Music in the Chapel – a variety of concerts throughout the year, starting with Kidderminster Male Choir at 7.30pm on Saturday 18 March Tickets £10 To enquire about baptism, marriage or funerals please contact: Revd Phil Hoar 01299 826641 11





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Community News

Far, far away

It's still quite a long way to go until the holiday season, for those of us lucky enough to get one.

Travel is increasingly fraught with terms and conditions of travel, uncertainty about how much you will get for your money, whether you'll actually get there or not; not to mention the cost of the trip in the first place. Anyone can be an armchair traveller, though. A good author can transport you anywhere in the world – or even out of it. Take crime fiction, for instance. Pick an Andrea Camilleri novel and you can be in Montalbano's Sicily; Ann Cleeves and M C Beeton can transfer you to the Highlands of Scotland; Camilla Läckberg to Sweden and Jason Webster to Spain.

Elsewhere in fiction you can visit the Mediterranean with Victoria Hislop, go just about anywhere with Santa Montefiore, and experience life in Ireland with Maeve Binchy.

If you've always wanted to time travel, you can be transported back to the Roman Empire with Simon Scarrow, the Tudor Law Courts of England with CJ Sansom, or Mediaeval England with Karen Maitland. Your mind can travel at any time you choose, free of charge. Just pick a destination!

Kay Sanderson Bewdley Library

Holy Family Catholic Church Lent 2017

Bewdley WI

In addition to our usual Sunday and weekday Masses, there will be Stations of the Cross every Monday evening at 7pm and a Lent reflection/prayer meeting on Fridays (except Good Friday), laity-led by a different person each week, starting at 12 noon and followed by a light lunch.

3rd April 7.30pm St George's Hall

'Tales of a Reluctant Gardener' Speaker - Charles Hadwell

On Good Friday – Stations of the Cross at 12.30 pm prior to the Ecumenical service in Jubilee Gardens. All are Welcome

Visitors Welcome Entrance Fee £3.50 (Refreshments included)

There will also be a 'Bring and Buy' Table 13





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Community News

Wyre Forest Repair Café branches out!

The success of the Transition Bewdley Repair Café goes from strength to strength! The January event achieved a record number of visitors and repairs undertaken. The expertise of our volunteer repairers continues to grow as does the range of items brought for repair. And now we are helping to set up a second Repair Café in Wyre Forest District.

When we started, our aim was to create a culture of repairing rather than throwing broken items away. As expected, we have undertaken many repairs of a technical nature as well as more straightforward repairs for people who have become accustomed to our throwaway society and have not had the confidence to undertake their own repairs. Many, after watching our Repairers at work, have been inspired to have a go for themselves. We have also been delighted that a number of youngsters have come along with their parents to see their toys repaired. ”.

Given the success of the Bewdley Repair Café we are now working with our friends in Transition Kidderminster to help them set up the Kidderminster Repair Café. This will be launched on Saturday 4th. March. Meanwhile Bewdley Repair Café will continue on the third Saturday of each month in St. Georges Hall adjacent to the Load Street Car Park. People are welcome to attend either of these Repair Cafes and having two events each month means that they do not need to wait too long for urgently needed repairs.

The dates of forthcoming Repair Cafes are: Kidderminster: 4th March,1st April, 6th May, 3rd June, 1st July Bewdley: 18th March, 15th April, 20th May, 15th July. Please note that there will be no June Repair Café in Bewdley and that we will be taking a break at both venues in August. 19






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Community News

All Saints’ Church Yard

Midcounties Co-operative Funeralcare, at 58, Load Street, Bewdley, tel 01299 403147, has offered to provide FREE long term help looking after a family grave. Are you getting older, have cranky knees, can’t drive, live too far away?

Every summer the grass grows out of control and people moan and complain. But All Saints’ Church is only responsible for paths and edges. If you have a stone or vase on your family grave and one of you signed a form agreeing to care for it for 75 years. Is that you? The churchyard is big and awkward to mow, and All Saints’ has one man, Adrian, with a mower. He looks after the front of the church, the monument, paths, and the Garden of Rest. Also we employ Muddy Boots, who come five times a year to look after the paths at the back of the church. So what to do?

We have a suggestion to put which is twofold.

1. Get involved with the Co-Op offer if you can’t tend your grave:

2. We would like to encourage carers to convert to grass with just a vase for flowers or a plant. Easier for you to manage, and us to mow as with your permission we could mow across the whole area and keep it under control. Contact me, Roz, on 01299 401605 or to discuss Co-Op help or converting to just grass

Roz Mace

Art Group

We are a small informal and friendly Art Group that has recently relocated from the Red Cross hall in Lax Lane (as it is closing) to the Baptist Church. We have a couple of vacancies and would like to offer them to interested parties. We are ecumenical and open to all.

We meet from 2 - 4pm on a Monday and charge a nominal fee to cover the cost of the room. Water colour is our main medium but pastels and acrylics are also used.

Further details from Marie O'Brien 07885503724 21




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Community News

Since its inception in 2013, the Bewdley Passion has become a regular event in the town’s calendar. The programme has continually been evolved to offer different ways of reflecting on the final days in the life of Jesus, and this year is no exception.

Our 2017 Passion programme will involve three different activities, all on Good Friday 14th April.

At 1p.m. the Bewdley Churches will hold a united service in Jubilee Gardens to recollect the events of Maundy Thursday and Good Friday, each congregation telling a part of the story.

At 3p.m. there is the opportunity to either join a guided walk to the foot of the cross at Bewdley’s own Golgotha (approx. 2 miles round trip) or to enjoy a time of quiet reflection and meditation at Riverside Elim church.

In the evening, Bach’s St. John Passion will be performed in St. Anne’s Church at 7.30p.m. led by Musical Director Alastair Elliott, with the Festival Chorus, Bewdley Baroque Orchestra and professional soloists. The Bewdley Passion programme is an offering to the community, and there is no admission charge to any of the events - everyone is welcome to join us to celebrate this most holy of days.

Annual Bewdley Carnival

Charity Quiz Night

Preparations are now in full flow for the Annual Bewdley Carnival which will take place on 10th June.

The Charity Quiz Night at Pound Green and Button Oak Community Hall on January 20 was a great success with a full hall.

The Carnival Committee is still looking for people willing to give a hand with the Carnival, both the planing and on the day.

Ann and Bob Hill did a splendid job of running the Quiz and everyone enjoyed themselves.

The next Carnival Meeting will be at Bewdley Bowling Club on the 8th March at 7.30 and if you feel you can help and give a bit back to your town please come along. Any other information pleas ring Sue on 01299 401841

The team winners were US AND THEM led by Liz Fuel and the night raised £205 for the hall charity. Thank you to everyone who came.





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A crisp cold morning at the edge of the forest

Community News

One of the privileges of living here is the unexpected shows that nature regularly performs to whoever is fortunate to witness it.

This morning a herd of eight stags lazily fed their way out of the forest and into our meadow. The “Daddy” made himself comfortable, folded his legs and settled down to watch his posse. The “boys” had found a damson tree to their liking and proceeded to remove its bark (will they leave the other damson trees alone?). Meanwhile two adolescents entertained us with play rutting, the crisp frosty morning seemed to suit them as they practiced using their magnificent antlers, “ Daddy” looking on paternally.

Two of the other males had settled down for a rest in the meadow too, which give us a great view of the two magpies that had found the herd and we watched as each of these magpies took turns to jump from one stag’s back to the other. However a passing crow took exception to this and buzzed the magpies until they gave up and took flight.

The rutting had turned into grazing, the damson tree became less of a draw and it was then that the molehills that dot our garden with the surrounding lawn heavy in frost, looked like a map of the Constellations. The mole runs underneath were visible and looked like the London Underground under our garden. Is it time for the Mole Man again?

Zep Tepi

Bewdley Civic Society


Worcester Porcelain Manufactory

Old Fashioned Roses by Sue Russell

1776-1800 by Paul Crane

and Mini Spring Show

7.30pm at St. George’s Hall Tuesday March 14th Non members welcome


7.30 pm Monday March 20th Riverside Church, Dog Lane




Specialist Services

IRENA Foot Clinic

Do you Suffer Discomfort From: Corns Callus/Dry Skin Fungal Infection Thickened Nails Verrucas/Warts Athletes Foot Ingrowing Toe Nails Skin Problems/Smelly Feet Diabetes Being Unable to cut your own nails For professional treatment at my surgery or in your own home. Contact Irena on : 01299!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 841277 !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! !!!!!!!!!!

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Do you need transport........we’re here to help!

Community Transport Wyre Forest provides door to door transport for local people who don’t have access to their own car or who find it difficult to use public transport. We’ll take you from your home to local destinations as well as further afield throughout the country. So don’t stay at home......have a journey with us! We even have vehicles suitable for wheelchairs. Our booking line is

01299 405820

and is open 9am to 2pm Monday to Friday.

To find out how to become a member (or to volunteer as one of our driving team) contact us on 01299 405832 or e-mail or see our website 26

Visitors to the Jubilee Gardens will see, near the rear entrance to Bewdley Museum, a swathe of purple crocus. The bulbs have been planted by members of the Rotary Club of Bewdley to raise the profile of the Rotary International ‘Polio Plus’ campaign to eliminate polio from the world. At its peak in the 1940s and 1950s polio paralysed or killed over half a million people worldwide every year. There have been no cases of polio in the UK since 1982 and by 1988 polio had disappeared from the US, Australia and much of Europe but remained prevalent in more than 125 countries.

In 1979 Rotary Clubs in the Philippines obtained a financial grant from the Rotary Foundation, Rotary’s own charity, to immunise all the children against the disease, and members of Rotary throughout the islands were mobilised to manage and carry out the task. Some 6 million children were immunised against polio. It was a huge success and as a consequence in l982 Rotary International set in motion a plan to give polio vaccine to all the children in the world. Since then over 2.5 billion children have been immunised. Polio is endemic in three countries only: Afghanistan, Pakistan and Nigeria. In 2016 there were 34 cases only reported. It is very likely that in 2017 the last case ever of polio will be seen. So what have Purple Crocus have to do with all this? Well, when health workers go into remote areas to administer the vaccine, they need to know which children have, or have not, had the vaccine, so after receiving the oral vaccine the child’s finger is dipped into a purple dye, which is what the colour of the crocus represents.

Reader’s Photo

Rotary Young Photography Competition

Leah Gittins - 2nd Intermediate

Cameron Reeves - Senior Winner

Sam Anni

The Bewdley School and Sixth Form Centr another successful Rotary Young Photograp entered the competition taking photographs difďŹ cult time choosing the winners so congra winner and Cameron Reav

Thanks go to the Rotary Club of B and sponsorship o

Will Mur - Best a

nis - Intermediate Winner

re and the Rotary Club of Bewdley have held phy Competition. Learners from year 7 to 13 s based on the theme ‘Reflection.’ Judges had a ratulations to Sam Annis (Year 8), Intermediate ves (Year 13), Senior Winner.

Bewdley for their continued support of the competition.

lliam rdoch t Overall

Kitty Proctor - 2nd Senior

My First Job: Jeff Bishop

Like the previous First-jobber, my first job was when I happily left Kings School, Canterbury at the age of 16. I wasn’t naturally academic and had ambitions to own my own company and actually make things rather than write about them. I really wanted to own a boatyard but alas, we lived rather a long way away from the coast. However, eventually I managed to secure an apprenticeship at a boatyard on the Thames at Kingston upon Thames. It was owned by James Allday, famous in car racing circles, and the boat-building company in Kingston was his hobby. Day-to-day running of the yard was down to a Devonian called George. He was a man of few words but very firm opinions on the correct way to do everything from Use of a Screwdriver to Correct Planing. It was through George that I learned the woodworking skills that have stood me in good stead ever since.

After my first year, I was sent on a day release scheme at Brooklands, where Mr Allday had connections. It was a naval architecture course which may sound esoteric, but while I was there I learned the techniques of working with fibreglass. It was relatively new at the time and the boats we were building were lighter, stronger and decidedly cutting edge for the time.

Sadly, after three years apprenticeship at this firm, James Allday died and the company died with him. I moved on to London and to Lloyds as an insurance broker. But that’s another story. Jeff Bishop

Unseen Bewdley

Like me, you may be amazed that this small plaque is in a very public place yet has gone unnoticed all this time. How nice to see such a delightful example of recycling! Bridge Sollers may have a new bridge, but it’s not a patch on ours, now that the old bridge has been replaced by a modern steel and concrete crossing. If you haven’t yet worked out where the plaque is, go to the far end of Gardners Meadow carpark and have a look along the alleyway by the cricket pitch.

With thanks to Peter Roberts, who spotted the plaque.

Community News

Daddy SOS - A new series on Life from a Man’s Point of View

To plunge straight in: I am a recent widower. My wife's demise is deeply felt, but as Kerouac said at the start of On the Road, I don't want to get into that.

These articles are about a dad's life. How my 6 year-old daughter and I triumph and fail, and how we get there in the end. I will start with the tale of the washing machine. I didn't know the white beast in the kitchen could be so obtuse. Initially, I chose random settings and put detergent into all three of the compartments in the pull-out drawer. The results were mixed: sometimes the machine ran interminably long cycles and other times very quick ones.

I abandoned the narrow middle compartment. My intuition told me that the narrowness must indicate some superfluous function. But which one for the powder? Left or right?

I cornered mummies at school and put the question to them. I never got a consistent answer. Was this a conspiracy? I phoned the only woman I could trust - my mum. She brought light to the settings issue but couldn't tell me where to add the washing powder. In despair I phoned a bachelor mate. He bought clarity to the matter. It was genius. Simply buy a detergent with a cap on it that you fill up and then place on top of the dirty clothes.

He didn't warn me that the machine needed draining after a few months. But that's another tale. Pater Unum

Puppy Walking

I said a teary goodbye to my Guide Dog puppy, Delphi, at the end of January almost exactly a year after she was delivered to me at 7 weeks of age. It's been an amazing year working with one of these remarkable dogs.  Delphi has been gentle, loving and sweet natured, very eager and quick to learn.  She's now been paired up with her trainer at the Leamington Guide Dog Training School where she will be learning all the skills she needs to become a life changing companion to someone who needs her help.

Delphi's trainer will contact me from time to time to let me know how she is progressing. I have already had two phone calls letting me know that she has settled in and has made new friends with the other trainees.  I have also seen photos of her playing happily in the excellent facilities provided by the Guide Dog Association.

Many people have commented over the year how difficult it must be to give them up but when we hear about the difference a guide dog can make to a person's life it makes the tearful parting worthwhile. Thank you to all the people of Bewdley who make our dogs feel so welcome in the town. Fran





Community Corner Pre-School

Specialist Services

St.Anne’s Cof E Primary School, Wyre Hill, Bewdley DY12 2UQ Tel: 01299 401871

• Community Corner; at the heart of the community on the site of St Anne’s Primary School, enjoying an excellent partnership with our host school • Quality pre-school care & education: our staff team are highly qualified Practitioners, who are passionate about childcare, it’s in their hearts • ‘TOTS’; our specially created 2 yr. olds room, a gentle start for your child

Funded places offered for 2, 3 & 4 year olds Monday to Friday, 9a.m. - 3p.m. during term time Call Chris for more information or visit us at Community Corner Pre-school; touching hearts right from the start




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Community News

Soroptimist International Kidderminster and District Calling all Bridge Players

Our annual Charity Bridge Drive in aid of the Alzheimer’s Society will take place on Wednesday 26th April, at its regular venue in the Parish Rooms, 18 Belbroughton Road, Blakedown DY10 3JG – 10am for a prompt start 10.30am until 4pm. Coffee & biscuits will be served as from 10am. Cost £12 per player – including lunch. For further information and to book your place contact Sue Merrill on 01562-700078 or 07831487648 or email:

Our next Business meeting is at 7.30pm on Thurs. 2nd April at Baxter Church Rooms and the regular Supper Speaker meeting at La Brasserie, Kidderminster, takes place on 16th March, 6.30 for 7pm. Visitors are welcome to any of our meetings. Soroptimist International is open to all women as from the age of 18. For more details about our meetings, the club and its activities, please do contact us: tel. 01299 266101 or email:

Bewdley and Wribbenhall Ladies’ Luncheon Club

At the January meeting we had a most interesting look behind the scenes into the life of Norman Wisdom. He had a very poor start in life, but thanks to his determination he succeeded in becoming the star we all know.

On 29th March we welcome Jo Roach, who will speak on “History of Abberley Clock Tower”. Ladies are assured of a warm welcome at the Mercure, so to enquire please ring 01299 877908.

Bewdley Footpaths

Bewdley Evergreen

Meets in the garden on the east side of the river just below Bewdley Bridge at 1.45pm for a prompt start at 2.00pm. Sunday 5th March Coopers Mill Approx 5 ½ miles Sunday2nd April Stourport/return via Blackstone Approx 6 miles

for the young at heart

at Bewdley Baptist Church Wednesdays 2.00 - 3.30 8th March: Keep Fit

All welcome to this friendly group or more information telephone Ellen Micklewright 01299 409355 33





Specialist Services

Bewdley Cricket Club is located on High Street, sandwiched between the idyllic River Severn and Red Hill at its Lower Park Headquarters. Set amid some of Worcestershire's finest rural scenery, the ground is considered one of the prettiest in the county. The ground is the perfect backdrop to any celebration, be it a birthday, christening, or wedding, and the wonderful out door space is complimented by a large furnished patio area. The clubhouse, having been entirely refurbished in 2012, boasts a fully licensed bar with a range of draught beer and has the capacity for parties up to 100 people. With a fully equipped kitchen, the club is able to host self catered events and has seating capacity for up to 50 people. With Wi-Fi capability and big screen projection, the club

Tel: 07870 752274

lends itself as a perfect venue for small scale conferences, meetings and team building events for businesses.

Web: Email: Twitter: @BewdleyCC

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Community News

The Vernal Equinox

It’s March again. Watch out for Mothering Sunday, the clocks going forward and, of course, the Vernal (Spring) Equinox. Of those three, we take most notice of putting the clocks forward and marking Mothering Sunday, but like its partner in September, the Equinox usually passes unnoticed.. It’s a pity we don’t contemplate the Equinox rather more. Perhaps we should celebrate it. It happens twice a year. What an opportunity for more greetings cards!!

The year is the amount of time it takes the spinning earth to travel its orbit around the sun. If you imagine a straight line drawn from the centre of the sun to the centre of the earth, that line will normally be at an angle to the Equator. This is because of the earth’s tilt – the tilt that gives us long days in the summer and short days in the winter. On the year’s two equinoctial days though, that line to the centre of the earth would pass right through the Equator on the earth’s surface.

The fact that at an equinox, whether we are in the UK or in New Zealand, our day and night are of the same equal length, emphasizes our world-wide unity.

The fact that the day and night are the same the world over provides an instance of equality in this world of appalling world wide inequality, because, with 12 hours night and day everywhere, we are literally equal under the sun at Equinox.

And the fact that we are thinking on a planetary scale reminds us that the planet is something we all share and something we must all protect.

Something to think about on March 21st, before the 26th when we celebrate Mothering Sunday and put the clocks forward.

For more equinoctial facts (and a good site for all things temporal) go to

For more on this equality-at-equinox idea, go to

Alan Fairs

Rock Pathfinders

Free guided walks along our footpaths and bridleways taking 2-3 hours, off the roads and into the countryside. 2nd March Worcester Woods Country Park, Wildwood Drive, Worcester WR5 2LG SO reference 878543

16th March short AGM followed by a walk from Rock Village Hall, Rock, Nr Kidderminster DY14 9SD SO ref 735712

For full programme see or ring Alan on 01299 400304 or Jan on 01299 832571 35





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Community News

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Community News

Clothing for Refugees

A big thank you to all of you who donated clothes, phones and money for refugees via St Anne's and All Saints’ churches. Since October 2016 we sent 89 large bags of clothes to local charity People in Motion for despatch to refugee camps in Europe, Syria, Lebanon and Jordan.

We still need donations of clean warm clothing and boots, for men, women and children, sleeping bags, blankets - all types are great. Also needed tea bags, tinned fish, tomatoes, kidney beans, chickpeas, oil, vegetable stock cubes, spices,biscuits.  No tinned meat. Collections at St Anne's Church - 29th March to 1st April, All Saints’ Church - Sundays to 11 a.m. and Mondays 10-12 and The Boar's Head, Kidderminster (opposite Dunelm).

Sorting donations is very time consuming so why not bring your donations to our sorting day and get stuck in with the team. You can learn about what we do, make friends and eat cake whilst helping too!  Next sorting day is Saturday 1st April, 2-4 pm at St Anne's Church.  Please note that the sorting venue may change so please call 405470 to confirm. Many thanks Sheila Lowe

Bewdley Floral Art Club

A Night of Music and Laughter with

Doug Parker

Bewdley Floral Art Club's AGM and demonstration will be held on

supported by Musical Duo

Monday 6th March

Ashcroft and Lewis at St George’s Hall, Bewdley

at 7.30pm, at

Friday 10th March 8.00pm

The Wharton Park Golf and Country Club.

£11.50 a ticket Bring your own food - Usual bar and raffle For tickets contact Bob Hill 01299 401722

Kerry Power will be our demonstrator for the evening. All welcome.










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Community News

The Changing Face of Load Street

This Friends of Bewdley Museum exhibition was inspired by the collection of photos left to the town by Ken Hobson who lead the Bewdley Civic Society for many years. A dedicated team of volunteers are working to catalogue the collection.  

On the 4th March the opening exhibition in Bewdley Museum is a display of our work so far

There will also be a trail around the town, can you spot this sheep?   

To learn about “Bewdley in the Swinging 60’s” join us on Wednesday 12th April at 2.30pm in St George’s Hall, when Richard Perrin, Chair of the Civic Society, will be telling us more, featuring photos of the town.

We look forward to welcoming back all our regular volunteers to clay pipes, ropemaking and the air raid shelter. If you would like to know more about how you can join the team please contact

Live Wyres is a social club for single people. We meet in pubs around the area and hold dances and other events in a range of venues from hotels to village halls. The following are a few of our events for March:Tuesday 7th Pub Night at The Queen’s Head, Wolverley. DY11 5XB – Committee Meeting Tuesday 14th Pub Night at The Old House at Home, B’ham Rd, Blakedown. DY10 3JE Tuesday 21st Pub Night at Old Waggon and Horses, Kidderminster Rd, Bewdley. DY12 1DG Thursday 23rd Whist Drive at The Queen’s Head, Wolverley. DY11 5XB Saturday 25th Live Wyres Dance at Stourport Workmen’s Club, Lickhill Rd, Stpt. Tuesday 28th Pub Night at the Island Pool, W’ton Road, Cookley. DY10 3RX

We always welcome new members. Any one interested can find out further information at our website or contact Sandra on 01299 400979 or Sally on 0121 4226122. 37


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Community News

Friends of Riverside North Park (FoRNP) The meeting held on Wednesday 8th Feb in the Guildhall attracted many new faces keen to save our paddling pool. After a brief background history of the Friends group the Chairman of FoRNP Mac Chamberlain moved on to explain where we are with negotiations with WFDC and Bewdley Town Council - details and minutes on our website<> Our next meeting will include an AGM on Wednesday 8th March 7pm at the Guildhall please come and help with the urgent task of fund raising for a new improved water facility and support for the Friends group. Whatever your crafting interest, this group for ladies is an opportunity to bring along your craft project, and friends, to enjoy the company of others, share ideas and inspire each other in a friendly group.

The group meets on the second Thursday in the month.

There will be tables to work on and refreshments will be available

Next Meetings : Have a go at making Easter Cards. Date: Thursday 9th March Time: 10.00am-12.00pm Venue: Back Hall, Bewdley Baptist Church

Want to know more: Ring 01299 403267 or email

Two readers photos of our wonderful forest

Jess Matthews

Diane Wilson 39





Specialist Services

Bayton Fuel Co Clows Top

Coal and Smokeless Fuel Merchants For all your coal needs Pre packed fuel available Please ring for details 01299 832 308 01299 400 479 !""#$%&'#(%)"#*#+# !"##$"$%&'()&*$$*+,'-'(."##'/#"0)%&'!1&2' 3*#*+,'-'4+)%&*1&'5'67)%&*1&'/"*+)*+,' (."##'8&*92'5'8#192'!1&2' :".*+")%;'5'<#*92'=#11&*+,' (>%;0'-'=%+9*+,'-'?")%0' <#%"+%;'5'@%$"*+)%;' ?"&;%+0'<#%"&%;'A$'5'B"*+)"*+%;' (#"CC*+,'-'D&*E%0'-'/")*10'²'F%)'!"0>%;' <1+)"9)G'



Community News







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Community News

Am I Being Unfair To You?

This is the question that will be discussed on Friday 3rd March at over 5,000 services in the British Isles – including here in Bewdley at 7pm at All Saint’s Church Wribbenhall.

The service was written by the Christian women of the Philippines and it has been translated into 1,000 different languages and dialects to be used throughout the world on March 3rd - Women’s World day of Prayer - starting at sunrise over the island of Samoa and continuing until sunset off the coast of America. In 2013, Typhoon Haiyan – named locally as ‘Yolanda’ – struck the Philippine islands in the Western Pacific Ocean. This is mentioned in the service and you will also hear the stories and hopes and fears of a girl, a mother and an older women.

There is also a reflection on the artwork - ‘A Glimpse of the Philippine Situation’ - shown right and designed by Rowena ‘Apol’ Laxamana-Sta.Rosa.

The Day of Prayer is not just for women. Everyone is welcome to attend the service – which will be followed by refreshments including Philippino muffins!

Bewdley Methodist Church

During the last few years projects to improve both the Worship area, the kitchens, toilets and meeting rooms of Bewdley Methodist Church have been completed, together with the refurbishment of the Church organ. Autumn 2916 saw the Church then use its reserves to fund essential building repairs to the roof and exterior.

There will be another 3 concerts in the Music in the Chapel series starting with Kidderminster Male Choir on Saturday 18th March at 7.30 pm, kindly sponsored by West Midland Safari Park. Tickets for the concert cost £10 including light refreshments and are available from : Mike Dernie Tel 01299 400284, email: and Neil Sollom Tel 07780 650491 email:

The next concert will be on the 17th June at 2.30 pm and will be given by Severn Baroque. 49





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6667$''6((1)*+"%$9.70(7*= >(+'$0'#?,="#(+#@ABC@BDC@CC E''6((1#;*+"%$9.F#G(:%(#H(13"F#!(9/"%9"5F#IJDD#B8K Wyre Forest Accounting â&#x20AC;˘ Book-keeping â&#x20AC;˘ VAT â&#x20AC;˘ Payroll & RTI returns â&#x20AC;˘ Management Accounts â&#x20AC;˘ Self Assessment CIMA Qualified Accountant, fully insured

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Community News

Bewdley Town Council News March

Neighbourhood Plan Objectives Consultation The next Neighbourhood Plan public consultation event will be on Saturday 18th March 2017 at Wribbenhall Parish Room, Kidderminster Road. This event will present the draft Objectives and Policies of the Plan, following last year’s consultation where the community set out their priorities for future land use in Bewdley. The event will run from 10am to 2pm where you can learn more about Neighbourhood Planning, meet members of the Steering Group and see updated storyboards and information on Bewdley’s Plan. More information can be found at Community Showcase Event Saturday 8th April 2017 will see St George’s Hall host a Community Showcase organised by the Town Council. Over 20 local organisations will be showcasing their activities, encouraging new members and recruiting volunteers. The event is free, so come along between 10am and 3pm to find out about the fantastic opportunities available in Bewdley to get involved with community groups and find out about a range of local clubs and activities. Whether its sport, history, crafts or support groups, there will be something for everyone! More information at 01299 400157 or e-mail Community Flood Volunteers In order to keep the temporary Beale’s Corner barriers, the Environment Agency (EA) is asking for our help. Could you provide information to the public on the ground during barrier set up/take down, or keep an eye on the barriers whilst they are up? You could even be one of our volunteer co-ordinators making sure the rotas are full and managing information from the EA. High visibility vest provided! If you think you might be able to help, please contact Annual Town Events Calendar The Town Council have been working hard on presenting an exciting range of events and markets throughout the year. There are some new events in the calendar, along with some old favourites, so look out for more information at

Future Town Council Meetings Town Council meetings are held at The Guildhall at 7.30pm on the first Monday of each month unless stated otherwise. The next meetings are: 6th March and 3rd April.

Meeting Agendas and Minutes are posted on town notice boards are available on the Town Council’s website 51







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Community News

Hospice appeals for new volunteers

KEMP Hospice in Kidderminster relies on volunteers to help the charity provide specialist care and support to patients, families and carers who are dealing with life limiting illness and bereavement across the Wyre Forest.

There are a wide variety of volunteer roles to suit all skills and to accommodate volunteer’s individual time commitments. KEMP Hospice is currently supported by 348 volunteers, with ages ranging from 14 to 88, who help out in every area of the charity’s work including Day Hospice, Counselling, Chaplaincy, Family Support and their 7 shops and warehouse.

To find out more about volunteering for KEMP Hospice, please contact Nina Price on 01562 756000, email or call in at any of our shops in Kidderminster, Bewdley or Stourport.

Bewdley Tennis Club Played at school?

St.Anne’s, Bewdley

Never played but would like to?

Thursday 9th March 7.30 pm

Rusty Racquets Saturdays 4.30-5.30

‘Help for refugees in the local area’

Mondays 9.30-11.30

Speaker - Ron Capell

Term Time Tennis for Women

All welcome

Contact Head Coach Geoff Barrie 07838 236691

Racquets provided 53

Community News

Bewdley Medical Centre Appointments GP Access appointment system

We have now implemented our new "GP Access" appointment system. This is the new way you book to see or speak to a doctor. We are delighted with how it is has been received. We are running a random survey and the results so far have been very complimentary, with 99% of patients giving the system a score of 4 or above out of a total of 5. Please see some of the comments listed below. We appreciate it is completely different to how you would have previously booked to see a doctor. However with the ever increasing demand, we needed to introduce a fairer and more efficient system that would deliver an improved service to our patients.

If you would like any more information, please pick up a leaflet from our reception desk or visit our website where you can see details of how to book your telephone consultation online, by signing up for Online Patient Access. The doctors and staff would like to thank their patients for their support in this very busy transitional time. Bewdley Medical Centre

Survey comments

Was very concerned about how it would work out, but I think this new system is absolutely wonderful

Very hesitant when heard about the new system but I was really pleased with how I was dealt with this morning, I think it works very well.

Feel that this system will be a lot better as many things can be dealt with over the phone.

It's better than the old system

Stick with this system and don't listen to the moaners, this works very well

Thought it was going to be very difficult, but I was pleasantly surprised with the system. I was first in the queue and dealt with very quickly.

Feel a bit uncomfortable that you can't book appointments the same as usual anymore, but for a lot of things I think it will work well. 54

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Good Friday Âą 14 April 2017 1.00 p.m. Âą 2.00 p.m. @ Jubilee Gardens


A non-denominational service offered by the combined Bewdley churches, followed by coffee and hot cross buns @ Bewdley Baptist Church. __________________________________

3.00 p.m. - meet @ Riverside Elim Church



Join a guided wDONWRWKHIRRWRIWKHFURVVDW%HZGOH\ÂśVRZQ*ROJRWKD (approx. 2 miles round trip) or enjoy a time of quiet reflection and meditation at the Elim church. _________________________________

7.30 p.m. @ 6W$QQHÂśV&KXUFK

2$3!4 45%#!!!!!! !!!!!/ /(66"5#! JS Bach !

Musical Director Âą Alastair Elliott The Festival Voices Bewdley Baroque Orchestra Soloists: Wilhelm Theunissen (Evangelist) Alan Fairs (Jesus) Judith Standing (Soprano) Jonathan Woodhouse (Counter Tenor) Luke Whatmore (Tenor)

The Bridge - March 2017  
The Bridge - March 2017  

The Bridge magazine - March 2017