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The Bridge May 2017

My First Job : David Finlow

It was 1962 and I had just finished sixth form and A levels. I was desperate for some pocket money, so I signed up to help with a traffic survey in Aston, Birmingham. The data collected was used in the planning of the Gravelly Hill Interchange, or Spaghetti Junction as it is more commonly known, which opened 10 years later.

However, my first real job began later in September that year when I headed off to London to join the BBC’s engineering department as a Technical Operations Assistant at the External Services studio centre in Bush House on the Strand. Here, funded by the Foreign Office, the BBC broadcast news and topical commentary to a huge range of countries and in an equally huge range of languages as well as the English language World Service. The job entailed a wide range of activities and meeting a lot of people from the overseas countries to which the BBC broadcast. One of the main aspects of the work was staffing the control room and liaising with the then GPO to ensure that programmes from the various studios in the building successfully reached the various short wave transmitter sites around the country. Part of my time at Bush House was during the cold war when the BBC relayed Voice of America (VoA) programmes via their Ascension Island site, through Bush House to Russia. These were often jammed by Russia and, if the signal from Ascension Island became too poor to re-transmit, we had a library of VoA tapes to broadcast – mostly Duke Ellington music – to try and keep the frequencies open.

On Saturdays there was a sports programme and, for some sort of copyright reason, football match commentaries could not be broadcast live but had to have a few minutes delay. The commentary was therefore recorded on to discs (something like the old 78 records but larger). These recorded about 4-5 minutes of commentary and when full were passed through to the studio to play whilst another disc continued with recording and a chain of discs were passed through to the studio. This worked well unless the playback machine in the studio was running slightly faster than the recording machine and they were playing back the commentary faster than you could record it!

Because of the time differences around the world, broadcasting went on, unlike the domestic services of the time, 24 hours a day, requiring shift work. A very vivid night shift memory is of finishing at 9:00 on the morning of 30th January 1965 and joining the crowds along the Strand to watch the State Funeral of Winston Churchill pass by.

I remained with the BBC until 1973 when I resigned to take up a teacher training course in Birmingham, specialising in children who were defined in those days as having severe learning difficulties. But that’s another story.

Editorial News

The Bridge is the community voice of Bewdley

It is free and delivered by volunteers to more than 4,600 homes every month Visit us at www.bewdleybridge.org.uk

A friend and I were chatting over coffee the other day. “That’s prescient” she said apropos my reaching for my diary. I leaned across the table. “Did you say “prescient?” I asked. My friend said that yes, she had said “prescient” and so what? “You’ve made my day!” I replied. “It’s a splendid, entirely right and lovely word”. My musings this month are on words. Not just any old tatty words, but the rich array of gorgeous words available to us all completely free. Her “prescient” was just such a word. There isn’t an exact everyday word that will do in its place so out it popped when needed. I want to champion all those underused splendid and entirely right words and encourage the world - well, OK, let’s start with Bewdley - to take them out, dust them off and use them. The English language is used across the world, which makes us pretty fortunate to have it as our mother tongue, yet I find myself saying the same words and phrases all the time. This has to stop. It’s lazy and unthinking. Words have appeared, disappeared, and reinvented themselves since Piers Plowman were a lad and my beef (reinvented word) is with the paucity of vocabulary as seen not just in the street but as shown by professional communicators. You try counting how many weary words like “icon”, “A-list” and “literally” (as in “I literally lost my head”) you’ll hear next time you watch T.V. Here’s my tiny contribution to the Better Speaking campaign. From now on I am going to employ a Word of the Day and see if anyone notices. Today it is “condign”. Tomorrow I am leaning towards “recidivist”. That might be a challenge, but hey, no pain without gain. (Sorry. That’s another thing I’ll have to relinquish. Easy, lazy catchphrases.) Can I call on your support? Clear the surfaces of your mantelpiece and stand some sturdy adjectives on it; empty the display cabinets and instead place a basketful of plump, glossy adverbs there. Find a shelf to display an arrangement of freshly-varnished conjunctions. Look out a tray and heap it with brightly-coloured verbs and pronouns. Let Bewdley shine with coruscating rhodomontade and consign platitudinous verbiage to the bin! Margaret

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Cover photograph: Logs from the forest by Margaret Ashmore 3





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Community News

May 3 Scrabble Group, Bewdley Baptist Church 10am-12noon - see page 43 3 Ladies’ Luncheon Club AGM - see page 25 3 Bewdley Evergreen meeting 2pm - 3.30pm - see page 23 4 Charity Open Tournament Bewdley Tennis Club - see page 45 4 Rock Pathfinders walk - see page 31 4 AGM Pound Green and Button Oak Community Hall 8pm - see page 43 7 Tennis Club Open Day, BewdleyTennis Club 12-4pm - see page 45 7 Bewdley Footpath walk - see page 19 8 Book Sale, All Saints’ Church 10am - 12Noon 8 Knit and Natter, All Saints’ Church 10am - 12Noon 8 Book Sale, All Saints’ Church 10am - 12noon - see page 23 9 Bewdley Festival - thirty for 30 - Event, St George’s Hall 10.30am see page 11 9 Bewdley WI meeting, St George's Hall 7pm - see page 45 11 Mothers Union meeting, St Anne’s Church 7.30pm -see page 43 11 Knit & Natter, Methodist Church, High Street, 2 - 4pm 11 Crafting group, Bewdley Baptist Church 10am-12Noon 12 Polio Exhibition start, Bewdley Museum - see page 37 14 Christian Aid Week starts - see page 39 14 Textiles talk, Guildhall 7pm - 9pm 15 Bewdley Horticultural Society, Riverside Church, Dog Lane 7.30pm - see page 45 15 Knit and Natter, All Saints’ Church 10am - 12 Noon 16 Methodist Church Walking Group, 10.30am, Tel 403941 17 Ladies’ Open Tournament, Bewdley Tennis Club - see page 45 17 Bewdley Evergreen meeting 2pm - 3.30pm - see page 23 18 Rock Pathfinders walk - see page 31 20 Transition Bewdley Repair Café 10am - 2pm - see page 41 20 May Fayre, All Saints’ Church 11am - 3pm - see page 39 20 Quiz Night Bewdley Baptist Church 7pm see page 7 20 Mozart Concert Kidderminster Town Hall 7.30pm see page 17 21 Butterfly Ramble, Dry Mill Lane carpark 11am - see page 19 21 Afternoon Tea, Mercure Hotel - see page 37 22 Knit and Natter, All Saints’ Church 10am - 12Noon 24 Crafts morning, All Saints’ Church 9.30am - 11.30am 25 Together event, Wribbenhall Parish Room 2pm - 4pm 30 Bewdley Bike week begins - see page 25 31 Ladies’ Luncheon Club meeting - see page 25 June 5 Bewdley WI, St George's Hall 7.30pm 10 Bewdley Carnival - see page 25 10 Bewdley Festival -thirty for 30 - Event, St George’s Hall 8pm see page 11 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. www.bewdleyparish.org.uk

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. www.riversideelim.com

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. www.bewdleyparish.org.uk

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. www.bewdleyparish.org.uk

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 www.bewdley.baptist.org.uk

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 www.bewdleymethodists.org.uk

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 www.stwulstanstourport.org.uk


St Andrew’s Button Oak Details of services at www.bewdleyparish.org.uk

Wish to book a wedding at All Saints’, St. Leonard’s or St. Anne’s? Please call Roz Mace on 01299 401605 or rozmace@talktalk.net 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. www.bewdleyparish.org.uk 7






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Prayer in St. Anne’s Church

Church News l

St. Anne’s continues to be open Tuesday to Saturday 10am to 2pm. During this time we welcome our many friends from the town and visitors to the town, with light refreshment available. The church is also open at these times for private prayer. You are always welcome to pray in church, and there is also a side chapel (towards the front on the left-hand side) that you can use if you wish. Here you can also light a candle. There is a prayer board immediately as you come into church on which you are welcome to pin prayer requests. Each week these requests are offered by the regular Saturday morning prayer group St. Leonard’s Church is usually open in daylight hours for prayer, peace and quiet.

Great fun Charity QUIZ NIGHT for Mission Direct

and Sue Hutson’s mission visit to Uganda Saturday 20th May 6.30pm for a 7.00pm start Prizes for 1st, 7th and 11th teams. Presentation Bowl for Winning Team Leader Cost £10 (£5 for students) per person: to include Fish & Chips, Sausage & Chips or Ham & Cheese Ploughman. Teams of up to 8 people. Team Leaders to pay a £10 deposit to book a table on behalf of their team, as soon as possible, as there is a maximum of twelve tables. Team Leaders will be given an Entry Form to book the food requirements for their team. Teams should have a name: e.g “The Hasbeens” or “Highley House Group”! Anyone not in a team can be allocated to one, and pays separately. Competitors are invited to bring “Nibbles” and “Soft Drinks”. Plastic beakers and cutlery will be provided.

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 admin@riversideelim.com, call the office on 01299 405535 or visit www.riversideelim.com 9





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Severnside School of Dancing

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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.

Knit and Natter group meets from 10am to 12 noon on each Monday except for bank holidays.

A Book Sale is held from 10am - 12 noon on the second Monday of each month.

A Craft Session takes place on the fourth Wednesday from 10 - 12 noon with different demonstrations each month.

For further information tel. Gail on 01299 401685

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 - 4.00pm

For further information please contact: Clerk of Meeting 01562 741501 Bewdley Meeting website: www.bewdleyquaker.org.uk

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 2pm - 4pm on the second Thursday of each month.

Music in the Chapel - our next concert features Severn Baroque playing music by Vivaldi, Handel, Bach etc. Saturday 17 June at 2.30pm.  Tickets £8

Well done, Sunday Club - The children of Bewdley Methodist Church's Sunday Club raised £150 for WaterAid at their Easter Sale on 8 April. Thank you to everyone who supported their efforts. To enquire about baptism, marriage or funerals please contact: Revd Phil Hoar 01299 826641 www.bewdleymethodists.org.uk 11





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From NEIL KEARNS Free Quotations 01299 402726 or 07989 058513

Community News

There was an advert many years ago for a magazine (TV times I think) with the catchphrase "I never knew there was so much in it!" The same can be said of your library services! In addition to books, a photocopier and reading glasses sales, we offer:

* Free computer access for two hours daily; only pay when you print something;

* ebooks via our brand new 'Borrowbox' system, with which some of you are already familiar and have given us valuable feedback; * emagazines via the Zinio app (choose from a wide variety of magazines to borrow and save a fortune);

* Children's activities. We hold legendary Bounce and Rhyme sessions for tinies and various activities throughout the year, not forgetting the Summer Reading Challenge for the summer holiday (this year's theme will be 'Animal Agents')

* Books on Prescription. Got insomnia? Anxiety? We have a selection of books on common problems that can help and supplement any support you are getting, medical or otherwise. Available for anyone to borrow.

* Freedom to borrow from and return to any Worcestershire County Council library; if you borrow something from Kidderminster you can return it to us. We'll send it back to them, and vice versa! Kay Sanderson

Why not try something new for May?

This initiative, to deliver an extra ten events to celebrate Bewdley Festival’s 30th anniversary year, continues at St George’s Hall 10.30am Tuesday May 9th An Exhibition on Screen journey to visit the Barnes Foundation, Philadelphia to explore the works of Renoir. Tickets £8 8.00pm Saturday June 10th An Evening with Wolves’ Legend Steve Bull. Tickets £15 (£10 under 18)

8.00pm Saturday July 15th Max Keen Lecture: Francis Drake – England’s Greatest Naval Hero? £10 (£12 on the door) Tickets available online at www.bewdleyfestival.org.uk or in person at St George’s Hall café. 13





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Behind the Baton

Community News

This month, I’m going to focus on one event which isn’t taking place in Bewdley but which will involve a significant number of Bewdley people and hopefully will attract a large audience from Bewdley. After a lot of planning, I am delighted that Bewdley Choral Society and Stourport Choral are joining forces along with the Bewdley Baroque Soloists to perform a programme of music by Mozart. The programme will feature some of his most significant works including his mighty and much discussed Requiem.  The joint choir will also perform the famous Ave Verum Corpus and Local pianist, Angie Allard, will perform his thrilling D Minor piano concerto.  Fans of the film Amadeus will recognise much of the music to be performed and I do hope that if you haven’t considered a classical concert before, you might think about giving this one a try. 

The music really is very accessible and exciting to listen to. The Music Room at Kidderminster Town Hall, where the concert will take place has been fully refurbished, is a far more pleasant place to attend concerts and importantly has much more comfortable seating these days. 

All the performers both amateur and professional are local people and I can assure you the standard will be extremely high indeed. Obviously, it would be wonderful to put on such a concert in Bewdley, but we don’t have a venue which could hold the 120 or so performers and hopefully an audience of over 300.  For me, this is a project I’ve been looking forward to for many months and along with the St John Passion on Good Friday, I have to admit to having enjoyed a glorious Spring of wonderful classical music.  The Mozart concert is on May 20th at Kidderminster town hall at 7.30pm Alastair Elliott

Together Lunch Club

We would be delighted to welcome you to our Lunch Club held every second Thursday in the month 12.30pm - 3pm, in Wribbenhall Parish Room (next to All Saints’ Church). All food freshly cooked, using local produce where possible, diets catered for. Main Course, Pudding and a hot drink, all for £4; what a bargain and it is delicious! To book please phone the Town Clerk’s Office on 01299 400157. Together Event An afternoon getting away from the housework and meeting people! Why not just come and see if it is for you, no need to book? We meet on the fourth Thursday of the month 2pm — 4pm in Wribbenhall Parish Room (next to All Saints’ Church) cost £2. There is a Speaker or other entertainment then a hot drink, homemade cakes, and a time talking and catching up with all the news. We are always looking for suggestions about what you would like to do, and have just organised our first trip to a local nursery. Both these groups also have a book exchange table and raffle. Volunteers We urgently need some volunteers to help us run these groups, no experience needed just an interest in people and desire to help. For more details, please phone Liz 01299 403053 Anne 01299 402204 Linda 01299 409414 17



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Community News

Bill and Mary Wear have been in touch with one of the members of our twinning town organisation in Vellmar for some years. This month Ferdie (with the help of his granddaughter) has written to his twin town magazine to share some thoughts about the passing of time.

Dear friends of Bewdley!

Being friends with Mary and Bill is nothing quite new but it is still something that gives pleasure not only because of all our trips to the beautiful town of you but also because of the huge friendship that has grown between us. I have absolutely fallen in love with the twinning of Bewdley. Even though neither of us can travel to the other any more we have been keeping as strong correspondence as possible but the recent death of my wife made me realise time is taking all things no matter how hard we hold. And so does the world. Brexit was shocking but it does not make any difference when it comes to our friendship. Unfortunately there are quite a lot of people here losing interest in our British German friendship which I find it quite sad. All the memories all the experiences and all the love are some pages in the long old book of my life I would never take for granted.

As an old experienced man all I can say is - travel! Travel as much as you can as long as you can. There will be the time you can't do it any more; you will look at the little box of memories and you will smile back at the times you shared with your friends. You will give them a call and you will be markedly happy to have those people in your life. God bless you all Ferdie and his granddaughter

All Saint's Church Wribbenhall

Remedial work has now been completed to the ceiling and we are pleased to say the Church is now open for normal Sunday services and all other activities.

We are sorry for any inconvenience the closure may have caused but we’re afraid we are looking at permanent work to the Church ceiling within the next 15 months for which we will be able to give plenty of notice. We would like to thank St Anne's, St Leonard's and Bewdley Methodist Church for taking over services for us at very short notice and also for their support and good wishes. Olwen Jahoor and Maureen Goldborne (Churchwardens)

Wyre Forest National Nature Reserve May 21st The Wonderful Woodland Butterfly Ramble as part of the Big Active Weekend Free guided ramble leaving Dry Mill Lane carpark at 11.00am Further information from Alice James 01299 400686 email: Alicejames@naturalengland.org.uk

Bewdley Footpaths

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 7th May Snuffmill Dingle Approx 4/5 miles 21






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Community News

The Stanley Baldwin Statue Appeal

In November last year, Bewdley Civic Society launched an appeal to raise funds to help towards the cost of the planned bronze statue of Stanley Baldwin (the first Earl Baldwin of Bewdley) which, it is hoped, will be completed for unveiling in Load Street at the end of 2017.

Many of you will be aware of the history of this 3-times Prime Minister who was born in Lower Park, Bewdley and who served as Bewdley’s MP for very nearly 30 years from 1908 until his retirement from politics in 1937. This year marks the 150th anniversary of his birth on 3rd August 1867 which will be marked by a celebratory service in Worcester Cathedral on Sunday, 17th September.

The reason Bewdley was chosen as the site for the planned statue was because Stanley Baldwin loved the town and because of the respect felt for Stanley Baldwin, in return, by his constituents. The proposed statue will be the first of Stanley Baldwin – unlike most other Prime Ministers who were honoured closer to their deaths. The Stanley Baldwin Statue Appeal is hoping to raise in the region of £150,000 to pay for the statue, the work necessary to erect it on the chosen site in Load Street and improvements to the paving around it. After a national launch event at the House of Lords in January and a regional event at Hagley Hall in February, the appeal has so far raised approximately £86,000.

The statue is currently being created by the renowned British sculptor, Martin Jennings, whose much-praised statue of John Betjeman is a tourist draw in St Pancras Station, London. Such an addition to the centre of Bewdley should prove to raise the profile of the town, to be an additional tourist attraction and consequently to become an economic benefit.

If any Bridge readers would like to donate to the Civic Society Appeal or to receive further details, please contact me (email and address given below), and I will forward information papers to you together with appropriate donation and gift-aid forms. Barbara Longmore Hon Secretary, Bewdley Civic Society, 18 Load Street, Bewdley, DY12 2AE Email: bmlongmore@gmail.com

Book Sale

Bewdley Evergreen

All Saints’ Church Kidderminster Road Wribbenhall, Bewdley, DY12 1DG

at Bewdley Baptist Church Wednesdays 2pm - 3.30pm

for the young at heart

8th May, - 10 to 12

3rd May: Cake bake day 17th May: Out on the bus

Free refreshments, free entry all books at only 5 for a £1

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

Large selection of jigsaws. 25





Specialist Services


Quality Garden Products Delivered to your door. Ambassador Multi Purpose 40ltr.3 bags £12.75 - 6 bags for Only £25 Levington Multi Purpose 50ltr. 2 bags £11.49 - 4 bags for Only £22 Levington Farmyard Manure 50ltr 4 bags £16 Levington Growbag+Seaweed 2 bags for £9.99 Ambassador Ericaceous 40ltr 2 bags £8.49 Decorative Bark 70ltr. 4 bags for £25.00 Stockists of SHL Professional Composts Bagged Aggregate Available

For Fast & Friendly Service contact: M: 07512 589665 or T: 01299 402622

The deadline for the June issue of The Bridge is 10th May


!For More Offers Visit our web site: paulsgardensupplies.co.uk Call: Paul on 01562 741820 Mob: 07704 346506 Email: gardensuppliesdirect@blueyonder.co.uk

Delivery £3.00 - Orders £25+ Delivered Free! Fast & Friendly Service


Trees All Dressed up by Margaret Ashmore

One morning at the beginning of last month I took my camera across the ďŹ elds to try and record that magic moment when the trees ďŹ rst think seriously about getting dressed for summer. I found oak, willow, blackthorn and rowan basking in unexpected sun.

Bewdley Community Showcase

Last month St George’s Hall saw some of the many local organisations showing us what the town has to offer. From the Book Week to the Tennis Club, from the Historical Research Group to the Knit and Natter groups, there is something for everyone to do however energetic they may be. Nearly thirty groups showed what a busy and vibrant town we live in.

Bewdley Community Showcase

Red All Round for Got 2 Sing

Local community choir 'Got 2 Sing' entered into the spirit of Comic Relief and helped to raise ÂŁ893.34 in the process! Choir members from Got 2 Sing Bewdley not only donned red noses but also red t-shirts, jumpers and dresses....including the male members!

Reader pictures from J Moule

Community News

Bewdley Carnival

Please don’t worry about all the £1 coins you have collected in money boxes and down the chairs! Bring them along to this year’s Bewdley Carnival on Saturday 10th June. The Carnival Committee will be very glad to receive and count all your coins (or notes) to enable us to continue the annual Carnival.

We are looking for groups, schools, pubs, shops, clubs, or individuals to join in the parade with any form of transport - lorry, tractor, van, car, wheelbarrow or just walking to join in the parade as it travels from Hales Park and over to the parade field at the Leisure Centre on the Stourport Road.

If you are interested in having a stall on the field or feel that you could help on the day please ring Sue on 1299 401841. We need all the help we can get!


Overspoke Bikes and Bewdley Outdoors are presenting an exciting week of cycling activities for you to enjoy over the May half term holiday (30th May- 5th June).

You, and your family can take part in…

Bewdley Bike Jam at Jubilee Gardens featuring activities for everyone including challenges for children and adults alike.

Bikeability classes to get everyone riding safely and confidently on the road. Learn to ride sessions for anyone that would like to learn how to ride.

Evening mountain bike and road

A fun day of racing at the Frank Chapman Centre including balance bike races (for children and adults!), fat bike race, and child and adult specific mountain bike race.

For more information see our website www.bewdleybikeweek.info or like us on facebook facebook.com/bewdleybikeweek or ask Hannah: hannah@overspoke.com

Bewdley and Wribbenhall Ladies’ Luncheon Club

In March, we enjoyed a talk by Jo Roach, on the interesting History of Abberley Clock Tower. On 3rd May we will hold our AGM and bring a buy sale.  On 31st May we welcome Yvonne Mort, who will demonstrate Pressing Flowers.  All ladies are very welcome to attend our meetings at the Mercure.  For further information please ring 01299 877908. 31



Opening Times Tues - Fri: 10:00 - 18:00 Sat - Mon & Evening treatments upon request. (Please ring or email to enquire.)


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 :

At Strelitzia we aim to provide the very best environment within which to relax, unwind and discover the benefits of taking time for yourself.

Sothys Facials 15% Pedicures o first t ff your Reflexology reatm ent. Eyebrow Shaping & Tinting Massage: Hot Stone, Aromatherapy, Deep Tissue and Swedish Sothys products sold Packages in Spa and online. Gift Vouchers Available

01299 841277 or 07795 958186

25 years experience Free vascular check of the foot The Old Farmhouse, Button Bridge, Kinlet, Bewdley, DY12 3AW email: hessins@gmail.com Irena s.a.c. dip.(Dist). f.h.p.p. n.cf.e. r.f.h.p.

Unit 3, The Doghouse, Dog Lane, Bewdley, DY12 2EF Tel: 01299 402222 ! Mob: 07949 115409 strelitziaholisticspa@gmail.com www.strelitziaholisticspa.co.uk

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 admin@ctwyre.org.uk or see our website www.ctwyre.org.uk 32

Community News

Food for Thought One of the things that make mummies special is How a 6 year-old and her their cooking. They have signature dishes that Dad triumph and fail, the whole family loves. ......and how we get there My cooking journey finished in my 20s. Back in the end. then I was a vegetarian. Lentils and vegetables were my staples. The only choice was pie or curry. My other culinary skills were making a good boiled egg, decent homemade chips and not so decent chapattis. My daughter won't touch curries. She won't eat salads. I needed to skill up and quickly. Luckily the esoteric knowledge of the kitchen is available on YouTube. Thanks to Jamie Oliver I have managed to produce passable cottage pies, fish pies and plates of spaghetti carbonara. However, there is the matter of the butternut squash I was given. The hard, large gourd sat on my kitchen surface challenging me, mocking me. One afternoon I confronted the squash. I narrowly avoided shortening several digits cutting open the squash. I then roasted the squash segments a little too long. Not to be deterred, I continued. I couldn't find any sage but hey ho press on. In a moment of divine intervention I was guided to the electric stick thing that turned witches brew into soup. Mine had extra flavour from all the black bits speckled throughout. The video then insisted on sieving. Divine help didn't strike twice. Surely my daughter wouldn't mind? She loved mummy's soups. After two tentative sips she politely declared she didn't care for my soup. This daddy still has far to go. Pater Unum

A Dad’s Life:

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart


Music in the Chapel

Piano Concerto No 20 Overture to the Marriage of Figaro Ave Verum Laudate Dominum

The next concert in Bewdley Methodist Church's popular 'Music in the Chapel' series is on the afternoon of Saturday, June 17 and features Severn Baroque, five instrumentalists playing the music of composers including Vivaldi, Telemann, Handel and Bach.

Bewdley Choral Society Stourport Choral Bewdley Baroque Soloists conducted by Alastair Elliott Soprano: Judith Standing Contralto: Mary Sinclair Tenor: Wilhelm Theunissen Bass: Alan Fairs  Piano: Angie Allard

Kidderminster Town Hall Saturday 20th May 7.30pm

The concert, sponsored by Hayden Estates, will last about an hour and the ticket price includes light refreshments.


Tickets cost £8 and are available from Neil Sollom (07780 650491), Mike Dernie (07977 063380) or via info@bewdleymethodists.org.uk




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 www.communitycornerpreschool.co.uk Community Corner Pre-school; touching hearts right from the start




Edward Cound - Registered Osteopath !! !! !! !!

Back pain, Sciatica & Trapped Nerves Headaches, Migraines and Arthritic pains Neck & Shoulder pain and Postural problems Sports Injuries. Also Hip, Knee and Ankle problems


ST GEORGE’S HALL Wednesday evenings & Thursday mornings

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Community News

Bewdley Museum and Tourist Information Centre

The museum has a busy schedule of events coming up in May and June. New for the season, we have introduced Tours. They range from a look at former Bewdley trades, Telford’s Bridge, Bewdley Museum and Foundry, Bewdley Hostelries and Bewdley Brewery. They run throughout May through to October and start from £4.50 per person. For more information pick up a flyer from the Museum or look online at www.bewdleymuseum.co.uk/whatson. The exhibition called Bones of the Landscape is taking place in the Saw Yard. It is an exhibition of paintings, prints and drawings by artists who have all suffered sight loss. The work on display is an exercise in looking and ‘seeing’ through the traditions of landscape painting, materials, media and memory. Children’s Whitsun week holiday takes place Monday 29th May-Friday 2nd June, children’s craft activities will be on offer between 11am-3.30pm and cost £4 per person. All children must be supervised and you can just turn up without booking.

Friday June 9th sees the return of an Open Evening for Made in the Museum. A group of artisans with businesses who work under the label "Made in the Museum" Bewdley. The skills of the artisans are wide ranging and include a French polisher / wood turner, two potters, a grower of herbs and maker of preserves and oils, a pewter smith, a pagan author and herbalist and artists with wide ranging portfolios. Come see our unique handcrafted and bespoke gifts, find out about our workshops, talks and courses available on site, offered by the resident craftspeople.

Sunday 11th June, Heartbreak productions return with outdoor performance of Billionaire Boy, the famous David Walliams book in Jubilee Gardens from 4pm. Tickets available online at www.wyreforestdc.gov.uk/bookings or from Bewdley Museum. For more information about Bewdley Museum and Tourist Information Centre call 0845 607 7819.

Refugee Donations

Troubled by the interminable images of refugees? Would like to help, but how and what? Bring clean warm clothing and boots for men, women and infants, sleeping bags, blankets to the donation point at the undercroft of St George's Hall.

'Save one life, you save the world entire'. Thank You ! 35






0129 99 270702

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

Tel: 07870 752274 Web: www.bewdley.play-cricket.com Email: bewdleycricketclub@gmail.com Twitter: @BewdleyCC

Contact us now to discuss your requirementsâ&#x20AC;Ś.


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Community News

The last Saturday in March saw our region’s 15th Annual Public Speaking Competition held in Birmingham’s prestigious Council House where seven of the 12 clubs in Midland Arden Region introduced in total 11 candidates. These were pupils 14 – 18 years of age each sponsored by an SI club within the region. The topics ranged from aspects on “Social Media – blessing or curse?”, “Is History relevant in today’s modern world?” and “If I didn’t have an education.....” Our club had entered two candidates from Baxter College – Louis Wharton and Madison Wright (both by far the youngest contestants), supported by their English teacher Sophie Harris. Although they did not win they gave very competent and interesting presentations and we are proud to have sponsored them.

The winning speech was delivered by Thomas Woodland from Kind Edward VI School, Stratford on the topic of “Women’s rights” who started his delivery by declaring himself to be a ‘feminist’! A winning argument to an appreciative audience.

Elke Jury Communications Officer

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: kidderminstersorop@gmail.com website: http://sigbi.org/kidderminster-and-district/ Facebook: Soroptimists Kidderminster

Rooms for Hire

at the Quaker Meeting House Lower Park, Bewdley Range of rooms Fully equipped kitchen Disability friendly Attractive secluded garden Reasonable rates For more information about hiring this historic building please contact: Tony Sargent on: 01299 405943 or tigrish@btinternet.com

Rock Pathfinders

Free guided walks along our footpaths and bridleways taking 2-3 hours, off the roads and into the countryside. The May walks will be on Thursdays

4th May Evening Walk 7pm start from Lenchford Inn, Shrawley Layby alongside the B4196 SO reference 813643

18th May 10.30am start from The Old Beams Dunley Road Stourport DY13 0AA SO ref 807708

For full programme see www.rockvillagehall.co.uk or ring Alan on 01299 400304 or Jan on 01299 832571 37





Specialist Services



High Quality Fruit & Vegetables (inc seasonal produce, locally grown)

Fish, Eggs, Local Honey & Marmalade. Flowers for all Occasions (Special Orders Catered For)

Online ordering now available at www.bewdleyfarmshop.co.uk Register with us for regular FREE deliveries to your door

HEALTHY START vouchers accepted

Dog Lane • Bewdley • Worcs • DY12 2EF


!: bewdleyfarmshop@btconnect.com

t :

01299 400346 38






Specialist Services


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Specialist Services

For People and Pets

Unique, bespoke services

For Pets: Dog Walking/ Pet Visits/Home Boarding

For People: Walking Buddy and Home Companion Contact Sarah on 07958 704409 or 01299 402031


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Call Jenny on 07900 213 559 for further details about my ironing service. Free collection and delivery.


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Thinking about your child’s ed e ucation?

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Moffats, your loca all prep school, welcomes children from the ages of 3-13.

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A happy family y school in an exceptional setting. Extras include ridin ng in our 100-acre grounds.


Funded Kindergarten places: ages 3 & 4.


moffats.co.uk • 01299 841230 Kinlet Hall • Shropshire • DY12 3AY

Community News

Bewdley Medical Centre Appointment System

We have been running our new GP appointment system for approximately 3 months now. Although, as with any new system, there have been some initial challenges, we have received some very positive feedback! In addition to the day-to-day comments from patients we have also been running a survey which has found the following: 85% of patients have rated the new system better or the same as the previous one; 60% of problems have been dealt with over the telephone;

90% of patients have either spoken to or seen a GP of their choice.

In order to continue to improve, we have listened to your comments and made changes to enhance the appointment system even further. We have increased the amount of telephone consultations that can be booked on-line on the day for patients who have signed up to our Patient On-line Access service. If you need information on how to sign up to book your appointments and order prescriptions please visit our website www.bewdleymedicalcentre.com.

Feedback from patients has also indicated that they would like to know what days each of our doctors’ work to enable them to call and get an appointment with their preferred GP. As a response we are publishing the below detailed list. Please note that this is a guide only and can change due to annual leave etc. Doctor

Dr Chouhdary Dr Davis


✓ ✓

Dr Inglis

Dr Kneebone

Dr Montandon

Dr Tamplin


Dr Elliott

Dr Shand


Dr Green

Dr Sutton


✓ ✓

✓ ✓


✓ ✓

✓ ✓

Wyre Forest Health Partnership Bewdley Medical Centre, The Church Street Surgery, Hagley Surgery, Stourport Health Centre & York House Medical Centre Care - Commitment - Integrity 41


B. Ince



Telephone: 01299 403105

Funeral Director


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Bank House Severnside South Bewdley, Worcestershire


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Home Visits)) )

Hagley Clock Clinic Ltd

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Repairs, restoration & servicing of antique & fine clocks and other mechanical devices. Telephone: 01562 885080 www.hagleyclockclinic.co.uk


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Community News

Fancy trying something different this summer? Give Pub and Club a go!

What is the Pub and Club Regatta? A family fun day held each year by Bewdley Rowing Club. This year it takes place on Saturday 3rd June. People new to rowing, competing in crews of 4, race side by side in knockout sprints for the chance to win a pewter tankard and club membership for the year. Whether you are competing or spectating, it’s a great day out, with refreshments and food available all day.

Fancy dress has become more and more extravagant over the last few years; it’s not compulsory but there will be a prize for the best costume, so be imaginative. Take a look at the gallery on the website to see past crews.

How do I take part? Enter crews of 4 into the men’s, women’s or mixed category by downloading and filling out the entry form from bewdleyrc.co.uk. Over 16’s but no top age limit! When do I start? Training starts Saturday 22nd April

What do I get for my money? For £60 a crew you get dedicated individual crew coaching for up to 6 sessions, from current Bewdley Rowing Club members and entry to the race day. Places are limited and fill up very quickly: don’t delay, it’s never too early to get your entry in. For more information visit www.bewdleyrc.co.uk or contact the Pub and Club team on 07732 117453.










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Community News

Guide Dogs

The last update about our guide dog puppies was from Fran who had had to say a sad farewell to her puppy Delphi when she returned to Leamington to begin her training to become a guide dog. I have to say, Guide Dogs are very good with regular updates on her progress. It was lovely to hear how well she was doing and they always sounded so positive that I realised what I had always known really Jeanette was born to do this job.  We heard just before Christmas that she had been successfully matched with someone and I am so pleased to report that she has qualified and is now a working guide dog here in the West Midlands. 

Peggy, a lovely yellow Labrador with a wonderful gentle nature was placed with me shortly after Jeanette left and we were not surprised when Guide Dogs selected her to become a brood - a guide dog mum. She had to undergo an exhaustive regime of tests and happily she passed all of them; she will now stay with us.  When the time is right, around when she turns two, Guide Dogs will select a suitable mate for her and she will then come home to have her puppies here.  They stay with us until they are old enough to return to the NBC when they will then be assessed and vaccinated ready to be sent to puppy walkers around the country. Peggy will be expected to produce up to five litters, about one a year, so long as her health remains good, after which time she will be retired and we will have the opportunity to formally adopt her. Finally, whilst we wait for Peggy's new career to begin, Guide Dogs asked if I would like to walk another puppy in the mean time.  So we now also have Luna staying with us.  Luna is a Golden Retriever, six months old by the time you read this.  You will notice her out and about round Bewdley. You can't miss her - she is absolutely gorgeous!

Veronica Bowden

May Fayre

Saturday 20th May

Christian Aid Week

11am – 3pm

As we all know, there are millions of people in the world suffering from homelessness and starvation at the present time.

All Saints’ Church

Homemade cakes and Traidcraft refreshments

Christian Aid helps many of these people.

Plants, Bric a brac, cakes, crafts, Tombola, Books,

The “Week” is May 14 - 20th this year and there are plenty of envelopes in all the churches for you to use, if no-one calls at your door: please help fill them.

Toys, preserves

All Saints’ Church & Wribbenhall Parish Hall

Aren’t we fortunate to live in our beautiful town of Bewdley? Susan Price 01299 402199

All proceeds to church roofing funds 39


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Specialist Services





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Professionalism in Print

established 2007

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The deadline for the June issue of The Bridge is 10th May

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Community News

Transition Bewdley Repair Café

When we were asked to write another update about the Repair Café, Helen Bradley suggested collating some of the evaluations and comments from customers as they are always so positive. So here is a selection from the event on 18th March.

“An excellent and efficient service. A repair to my kitchen radio has been successful and a satnav repair as well. We can find our way home!” Two satisfied customers.

“Fancy them noticing I’d been trying to turn it (a kitchen blender jug that needed dismantling to clean) the wrong way.”

“The cake was a double thumbs up. Although our item was not repaired it was really interesting to see inside our electric clock and find out about how it works.”

“I thought my watch was beyond repair when it stopped after dropping it. But no! Peter B. quickly mended it in no time at all, according to my watch!” “David and Derek at the Repair Café are amazing! They fixed my garden shredder and I am delighted. If the Repair Café keeps going it will have a huge impact on reducing land-fill.”

“Excellent community initiative. Suggest continue and publicise more. Public grants available? Peter Archer was very helpful and knowledgeable.”

“A wonderful way to spend a Saturday morning. Great and friendly.”

“Just brilliant. Took ages to discover problem but success!”

“What a fabulous idea. Lovely gentleman (Don). Lovely to see skills being utilized in such a positive way.”

“Phil was tremendous and very helpful. Many, many thanks.”

“Thank you so much. Gem of a service. Friendly local help and so much appreciated”

Many of the repairs involve tool sharpening and also watches and clocks. For this reason a queue builds up at these points and people must expect to have to wait. Despite this, these events provide excellent service and the time passes quickly if you take advantage of the delicious food and drink served by the café and the interesting conversations with repairers and other customers, who are often strangers but soon become friends.

If you have skills, particularly in tool sharpening, then do contact us and join our team of volunteers. Over the past year we have heard many heart-warming stories about items, often of considerable sentimental value, which our volunteers have restored to use. The next Repair Café is on 20th May from 10am - 2pm so come along early and share your stories. Helen Ferguson






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The deadline for the June issue of The Bridge is 10th May 48

“Safe Place” Scheme

Community News

The Safe Place Scheme gives vulnerable people a short term “Safe Place” to go if they have a problem, feel threatened or worried when out and about in Kidderminster, Stourport-on-Severn and Bewdley town centres.

All shops, businesses and public buildings which are a safe place will have a “Safe Place” sticker displayed and trained staff members who are able to give reassurance and help people contact the appropriate support.

There is a free Safe Place Scheme App available for your mobile phone. Download “My Town Worcestershire” from the App Store, this will show you your nearest “Safe Place” and guide you to it through Google Maps. If you want to find out more visit our website www.nwcsp.org

Do you know anyone who would like to play but has no one to play a game with? On the first Wednesday of each month there will be a Scrabble Group Meeting in Bewdley Baptist Church. Our next Meeting: Date: Wednesday 3rd May Time: 1am-12 Noon. Venue: Back Hall, Bewdley Baptist Church.

Cost: A donation towards refreshments is appreciated. Want to know more: Ring Beverley 01299 823505 or the Church Office 01299 403267

Everyone regardless of ability or experience is invited to come along. If possible could you please bring a scrabble game with you. We look forward to seeing you.

Pound Greeen And Button Oak Community Hall Notice of Pound Green and Button Oak Community Hall: Annual General Meeting

St. Anne’s, Bewdley

Thursday 11th May 7.30 pm Speaker - Margaret Penn ‘Projects in the Diocese’ All welcome

Thursday May 4th at 8pm

For more information please see notice boards around village

Deanery Festival 24th May 2.30 pm St.Barnabas, Franche




Garden Garden


Living Living

SSpecialist Services

Community News

Smashing times ahead at town's tennis club

Bewdley Tennis Club is set for another busy summer season as it prepares to field 10 teams in the MANTIS Herefordshire & Worcestershire Summer League.

The teams will compete across men’s, women’s and mixed competitions with the Men’s A team spearheading the action in Division One against leading players in the county.

The Stourport Road club, which was founded in 1924, has a thriving junior section, a strong adult section and a range of starter and beginner sessions to encourage more people into the sport. Under head coach Geoff Barrie, the club runs a Rusty Racquets session every Saturday from 4.30 - 5.30pm for just £5 for non-members keen to get back into the sport.

In addition to competing against other clubs, Bewdley has a number of popular in-house tournaments such as the champagne and strawberries season opener. The club hosts its long running annual Ladies' Open Tournament on May 17 while an inaugural Charity Open Tournament in aid of The Emily Jordan Foundation takes place on May 4. The junior friendly club, which hosts the Wyre Forest Schools Tennis Festival, sees Friday night set aside for juniors of all ages and standards.

Anyone interested in seeing what the club has to offer can attend the club’s first open day of the summer on Sunday, May 7 from 12-4pm. It’s a perfect opportunity to try the courts, enjoy some free adult and junior coaching, test your service speed and sample its famed homemade cakes and pastries. For more information about the range of starter and beginner sessions contact Geoff Barrie on 07838 236691 or see the club website http://www.bewdleytennisclub.org.uk

Bewdley WI

Bewdley Horticultural Society

9th May 7pm

St George's Hall

Fine Lawns To Flower Meadows

Bring and Share food and Recipe Swap


AGM with election of Committee and President

Philip Aubrey

Debate of WI National Campaigns

Monday May 15th at 7.30pm

Visitors welcome Entrance Fee £3.50 ( Refreshments included)

Riverside Church, Dog Lane


Non members welcome





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Bewdley Bridge Club provides a friendly environment to play duplicate bridge. We are committed to helping people enjoy club bridge at every level and meet on Wednesday evenings from 7pm until 10pm at the Elizabeth Mills Centre in Stourport-on-Severn.

As an aid to learning this fascinating game, you will find weekly commentaries on the hands written by experienced players on the club website: http://www.bridgewebs.com/bewdley/

Affiliated to the English Bridge Union (EBU), the club is the largest in Wyre Forest. We use pre-dealt hands and a modern electronic scoring system enabling results to be available immediately after play. Our accredited EBU teacher has been running classes for beginners for the last 5 years. The next beginner class starts in September 2017.

For those interested in joining our intermediate section, please contact our Chairman, David Halford, on 07939 520068 or Sophia Foreman, Secretary, on 01299 409055. For those who would like to join the beginnersâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; class in September, please contact Richard Greenwood on 01299 402513. 52

Community News

Bewdley Town Council News May Twice Monthly Markets The Bewdley Riverside Market returned with a fanfare in April with TWO markets per month on the riverside and in Load Street. The market runs on the first AND third Sunday in the month! So save your pennies and come and see the NEW LOOK market if you haven’t been yet! More information - community@bewdleytowncouncil.org

Young Mayor The Town Council is delighted to welcome the town’s first Young Mayor – Louisa Coleman and her Deputy Melbryn Kruft-Welton. The Town Council have been working with the Bewdley School and Sixth Form Centre who have also taken the opportunity to restructure their own school council arrangements. The Young Mayor’s role is to ensure that the young people of Bewdley are involved in decision making at a town council level by contributing to town council meetings, making appropriate recommendations and representing Bewdley at events focussing on young people of all ages. The Council looks forward to welcoming Louisa and Melbryn to the Council Chamber at the Annual Meeting of the Town Council on the 12th May. Community Litter Picking The Council considered a suggestion by newly elected Wribbenhall Councillor John Byng to start a community litter pick scheme in Wribbenhall to complement the existing team. Anyone interested in getting involved is asked to contact Cllr Byng at john.f.byng@gmail.com. Dog Fouling The Town Council have resolved to lobby Wyre Forest DC as part of a Public Place Protection Order for Bewdley to make walking a dog without the means to clear up after it an offence. This is in response to a sustained effort to increase the number of offenders punished for not clearing up after their pets. This blight on our beautiful town is unacceptable as well as being unhealthy, particularly for children walking to school. The new signs are doing a great job, but more enforcement is necessary. The Town Council will be speaking to Wyre Forest DC to see how this can be progressed. 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: 2nd May 2017 and 5th June 2017.

Meeting Agendas and Minutes are posted on town notice boards and are available on the Town Council’s website www.bewdleytowncouncil.org.








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May in the Forest I have just put out of the window yet another little red beetle. It’s a Welsh Oak Longhorn Beetle and is rare enough to have been listed in the Red Data Book (an inventory of threatened species started by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature in 1964). However, they emerge in numbers from oak logs brought in to the house for our fires in the spring and can also be seen in the woodpile outside in May, so they’re not at all rare at Uncllys Farm, nor I suspect at many other locations nearby whether or not their inhabitants know it.

It reminds me of our ‘discovery’ of a colony of white orchids (the Narrow-leaved Helleborine) at St George’s Farm two years ago. The farm was empty at the time and we were measuring up for some new fencing when I saw some interesting plants coming into leaf in the field corner. Our excitement was in equal proportion to the nonchalance of the family who used to live there: they knew very well that the orchids came up in that spot every year. It all depends on who ‘knows’ and is regarded as the authority on the subject. My point is that the one who goes into print may not know as much as the ‘proper country folk’ who’ve lived alongside such things all their lives but don’t record their knowledge. Recording is terribly important though, and Rosemary Winnall’s 20-year study of the plant in the Wyre Forest has amassed a body of information which can be used to show the true status of the plant (in terms of numbers) and alert landowners to give them protection when work such as thinning or track maintenance is carried out. You can read the ups and downs in the recent history of this orchid on the Wyre Forest Study Group’s website, and perhaps you’ll be lucky enough to see a few spikes of its creamy-white flowers on one of your forest walks. My thanks to Mick Farmer for his photo of this lovely plant.

This month you should also look out for the delightfully-scented and shaped flowers of Lily of the Valley. It is only since moving to live at Uncllys Farm that I’ve realised this is a native wild flower. It grows in woods but appears to favour path and track edges where there is plenty of light but little competition from other vegetation; this makes it vulnerable to damage from traffic of the booted and wheeled variety. I was much relieved when my attempts to protect a colony along Tanners Hill were noticed by the driver of a transporter taking timber from a recent thinning operation and the plants survived, unsquashed, to grace the track-side again this year. Linda Iles

Profile for Martin Flegg

The Bridge - May 2017  

The Bridge magazine - May 2017

The Bridge - May 2017  

The Bridge magazine - May 2017