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Mendip Times

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Celebrating life on the Mendips and surrounding areas


IN THIS ISSUE: FESTIVE FARE • ARTS & ANTIQUES • CARNIVAL • CHEW VALLEY • CHEDDAR • WINSCOMBE • RIDING • SPORT Local people, local history, local places, local events and local news

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IT’S heart-warming to see how a community will respond to the plight of one little boy and his family. Literally hundreds of people supported this year’s Winford Scarecrow Trail, raising money to send Harvey Hext, aged seven, for treatment in the United States. Harvey is thought to be the only person in the world to suffer from both Downs syndrome and Neuroblastoma and his family have raised £155,000 so far, over half the total they need. Our everexpanding charity pages show there are many more people and organisations across our area working tirelessly for different causes. The spirit of community can also be found in our ploughing matches, apple days, carnivals and other events – we have pictures from several of them this month – they are what makes Mendip special. Our food and drink section is probably the biggest we’ve ever had, full of festive dining ideas, and we also have bumper sections on Arts and Antiques and Christmas gift ideas. We turn the spotlight on Cheddar, the Chew Valley and Winscombe to discover what they are planning for Christmas. Although we have more advertisers than ever this month – our thanks to them – we’ve lost none of our regular features or contributors – the magazine just keeps growing! We hope you enjoy it. December 2013 deadline: Friday, 15th November 2013. Published: Tuesday, 26th November 2013. Editorial: Steve Egginton Mark Adler Advertising: Ann Quinn Marjorie Page Publisher: Mendip Times Limited Coombe Lodge, Blagdon, Somerset BS40 7RG Contacts: For all enquiries, telephone:

01761 463888 or: email or: Design and origination by: Steve Henderson Printed by: Precision Colour Printing, Haldane, Halesfield 1, Telford, Shropshire TF7 4QQ Copyright of editorial content held by Mendip Times Ltd. and its contributors. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise without the express permission of the Publisher. The views expressed in this publication do not necessarily represent those of the publisher or its associates.

Front cover: Kilmersdon Apple Day. Photograph by Mark Adler (see page 6).


Burr family outing – to the Mendip Ploughing Match


Cheers – here’s to the apple harvest


Vamping it up – it’s carnival time once more


On course for success – see our four-page riding section

Plus all our regular features Environment...................................6 Farming Mary James MBE..........12 Food & Drink...............................20 Internet and Crossword..............40 Arts & Antiques ...........................48 Business ........................................56 Wildlife Chris Sperring MBE .......61 Walking Sue Gearing....................62 Outdoors Les Davies MBE ..........64 Gardening Mary Payne MBE ......66

Charities .......................................72 Community Simon Selby .............77 Family Mendip Mum....................84 Health Dr Phil Hammond.............84 Caving Phil Hendy........................88 Property........................................89 Homes and Interiors..................107 Riding Celia Gadd ......................112 Sport............................................116 What’s On...................................119 MENDIP TIMES • NOVEMBER 2013 • PAGE 3

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Rotary coup

FORMER Guardian editor, Peter Preston, is the headline speaker at an event organised by the Rotary Club of Wrington Vale at Batch Farm, Lympsham on November 13th. While he will be covering key aspects of his career, he will also be talking about the life-changing impact that polio has had on his life and which he contracted as a young boy, at a time when Britain still suffered from frequent epidemics of the feared disease. Since 1979, rotarians all around the world have helped immunise more than 2 billion children against polio in 122 countries. For less than £1, a child can be protected against this crippling disease for life. Wrington Vale president, John Thatcher, said: “This is a real coup for a local rotary club like ours to attract such a prestigious speaker. As well as a chance to raise funds for such an important cause, it’s also an opportunity for us all to gain a real insight into the role of the national media, and its relationship with politics, from someone who has broken some very big stories in his time.” Tickets, at £16, include a two-course dinner. Details: Ric Canham 07780 963738 or email

High office


Straight ahead for roundabout

A LONG-running fundraising campaign to provide a new home for Somerton Roundabout Pre-School has been given a boost by a £10,000 grant from South Somerset District Council. The pre-school is currently based in a wooden building that is more than 50 years old and no longer meets current needs. A suitable replacement building had been identified but, with a remaining shortfall of around £33,000 and an estimated project cost of nearly £200,000, the trustees of the school approached the council’s Area North Committee for a grant of £10,000 towards reducing this gap. In addition to many years of hard fundraising, the committee of local parents and supporters of the pre-school obtained other grants from Somerset County Council, Yarlington Housing Group, Somerton Town Council and a variety of local trusts and sponsors. The funding from South Somerset District Council has been made available through its community grants programme designed to provide help to projects led by the local community. As Mendip Times was due to be published, work was scheduled to begin on the replacement building, meaning local families will benefit for years to come. Jenny Maynard, one of the pre-school trustees, said: “Roundabout is run by the community for the benefit of the pre-school children of Somerton. We are looking forward to being in our new building in the early months of 2014.” Local council members Pauline Clarke and David Norris strongly supported the award. In a statement they said: “It’s wonderful to see the project getting closer and closer to the final hurdle and being able to start now. Local families will be getting the benefits of the new building for years to come.”

Blooms may be over

THE Archdeacon of Wells, the Ven. Nicola Sullivan, has been elected as one of eight senior women clergy to serve as regional representatives on the Church of England’s House of Bishops. The creation of the regional roles by the House of Bishops means female participation at the highest level in the Church of England and is in direct response to events of November last year, when General Synod as a whole narrowly voted against legislation to allow women to become bishops. The House of Bishops voted unanimously in favour. Archdeacon Nicola said: “I am privileged, honoured and excited to be representing the south west region as a woman in the House of Bishops. This interim arrangement allows for women to make a contribution to the decisions and discussions at the highest level in the Church of England.”

JOHN Woods, manager of the National Trust shop in Wells, tends the last of the summer flowers which once again earned it the title of Best Commercial Premises in the annual Mendip in Bloom awards. But the competition may not survive in the future after Alan Gloak and Christine Potter, two of its leading figures, decided to stand down. Wells boasted several individual winners apart from the shop in the Market Place; the Britannia Inn won best town licensed premises and the Town Hall was named best public building. St Margaret’s Chapel and almshouses in Glastonbury won the best community garden award. Crispin Community Centre in Street was named the overall winner. G Other Mendip in Bloom winners included: Chairman’s Cup for best large garden: Brian Harris, Frome Best small garden: Mrs Valerie Norvall, Frome Best allotment: Richard Anderson, Frome Blackthorn Trophy for best rural pub: Horse and Groom East Woodlands Blackthorn trophy for best village: Nunney Photographic competition: Natasha Welch, Shepton Mallet


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Kilmersdon Apple Day

VISITORS to Kilmersdon’s Apple Day enjoyed dancing from the Beetlecrushers, live music and applethemed competitions as well as a chance to have their own fruit crushed into juice.


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Apples at the core of community events By Mark Adler

SCHOOLS across Mendip are working with their local communities to organise a series of apple themed events. The activities are part of a project to promote healthy eating and to encourage people to grow and support community orchards. The Great Fruit Free For All involves secondary schools in Street, Castle Cary and Frome and their feeder primary schools. Staff, pupils and families from all the schools involved in the area are being asked to bring in excess apples and other fruit to be pressed and turned into juice. More apples will be given away to people who can use them with free recipes and some schools are processing the fruit in design and technology lessons to produce jams, chutneys and cakes. Dozens of people turned up at Castle Cary’s Market House where students from Ansford Academy crushed more than 500 kilos of apples. They also pressed a large amount of grapes donated by The George Hotel from its vine. The students – along with pupils from Lovington primary, North Cadbury primary and Evercreech primary schools – worked alongside members of the town’s Use-Less Transition Group. Together, they have also been working on a project to create a community garden and allotments. Teacher Tim Earl-Marsh, who is also a member of the transition group, said: “The whole point is that the students should be able to do something practical. They don’t just want to be taught about fruit in the classroom but want to get involved and grow it and process it.”

Somerton and Frome MP David Heath visited the event in Castle Cary PAGE 6 • MENDIP TIMES • NOVEMBER 2013

Ansford Academy students with member of Castle Cary’s Use-Less Transition Group

Barbra Lakin, South West Fruit-full Schools Project Coordinator, said: “We have had tremendous support from people in the schools’ catchment areas. “We have also been contacting local food banks so they can let local people know about the event as food banks can’t take fresh produce.” David Heath, MP for Somerton and Frome, visited the event in Castle Cary. He told organisers: “This is a project which I have held up as a good example of how to do things elsewhere.” Crispin Academy in Street has been working with Elmhurst primary, Brookside primary, Coxley primary and the Rural Life Museum in Glastonbury. Its event was held as Mendip Times was going to press. In the Oakfield area of Frome, Oakfield Academy, is working with Sustainable Frome on its apple day on Sunday, November 10th (1pm-4pm). The academy students will be joined by pupils from Norton st. Philip First, Trinity First, Mells First and Critchill Special School.

Aurelia, aged two and threequarters, lends a hand

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Hedgerows through the seasons

The 2012 winning photograph by Nick Stacey, Westonzoyland

THE Somerset Hedge Group, which co-ordinates the efforts of individuals and organisations who are concerned about hedgerows in the old county area, has launched its 2014 digital photographic competition. The competition follows successful competitions in 2008, 2010 and 2012 and runs until October 2014. This year’s theme is Hedgerows Through the Seasons. SHG’s objectives are: • To increase everyone’s awareness of the important roles that Somerset hedges play in farming, wildlife conservation, cultural heritage and the landscape • To provide appropriate advice to all involved with hedge management and the general public • To undertake work that promotes the study, conservation, restoration and enhancement of hedges in Somerset. The photographic competition is supported by Somerset County Council, CPRE, the Blackdown Hills and Mendip Hills AONBs and Marshall Agroecology Ltd. There are two classes: Open and Junior (under 15). For an entry form and competition rules, visit:

Mendip Society festival

Looking back, looking forward


Part of the Welton, Bibby and Baron site in Welton

THE Welton Village Group is to host a workshop on the future of the former Welton, Bibby and Baron packaging site. The event will be held in January to allow residents to have their say on the options for the now-empty complex. The workshop was announced at the first meeting of the Welton Bag history group which featured a talk by Paul Myers, from the Midsomer Norton Society, about the site; it began life 180 years ago as a brewery. The bag production company announced in 2011 that it was transferring to a site in Westbury in Wiltshire. It employed 300 people. Welton Village Group was formed in May 2012 to promote a community spirit in the area. Paul, the mayor of Midsomer Norton, started the evening by encouraging the audience to contribute any local knowledge they might have. The talk was illustrated by photographs showing both the development of the site and examples of products throughout its history; much of the detail kindly provided by local residents. The workshop will be held at Welton Baptist Church. Full details will be announced closer to the time.

THE Mendip Society’s Mendip Hills Walking Festival proved to be very successful, with about 150 visitors and members enjoying 11 walks over many familiar and much-loved parts of Mendip together with four heritage events in Wells, Axbridge, Frome and the Strawberry Line. This group is pictured at Hazelbury Manor, above Compton Martin. MENDIP TIMES • NOVEMBER 2013 • PAGE 7

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Pointing the way




A UNIQUE finger post on top of the Mendips has been restored with new fingers signposting visitors to Charterhouse, Shipham and Cheddar , with the third and only original remaining finger ‘Road unsuitable for motor traffic’ pointing down the track that leads to the stock car racing circuit at the top of Battscombe Quarry. Since 2012 the Mendip AONB service has restored 11 posts on the route from Two Trees at the top of Burrington Combe, to West Horrington via Charterhouse and Priddy.

Remember, remember . . .

REMEMBER the snow at the end of last October and the beginning of November? I do. We were supposed to go down to my brother's home near Shaftesbury on the 31st but only got as far as Litton! Are some of the newspaper with DAVID predictions true and we’re going to MAINE experience some huge snowfalls in the coming weeks? Who knows? They are probably just another media “sensation”. Headlines like that appear every year about this time, especially when not too much of interest has been happening on the weather scene recently, just autumn steadily advancing. No October gales, just some relatively warm weather, including a couple of lovely days when it seemed like we were enjoying something of the Indian summer I described last month. However, the longer it lasts, the bigger the temperature difference becomes when things revert to normal. This was the case recently after the warm spell when there was a temperature drop of anything up to 10˚ Celsius between one day and the next in some parts of the country which was quite noticeable especially with the increase in wind. Elsewhere in the world, however, the weather has certainly been more dramatic: a cyclone which hit part of north-east India, for example, with torrential rain and winds up to 150 mph. But why a cyclone and not a hurricane? The only difference is down to the part of the


Clean up Frome


VOLUNTEERS across Frome will be clearing paths, litter picking, planting bulbs and generally giving the town a cleanup as part of a week-long series of community events. Participate Frome is aimed at engaging all people in Frome and will run from Saturday, November 2nd until Saturday, November 9th. The clean-up volunteers will be supported by HopeFrome, Friends of the River Frome and Frome Town Council, which is leading the week of events. Last autumn’s snowfall over Mendip

world in which they occur. They form in exactly the same way over warm seas in the subtropical belt and are at their most frequent and dangerous when the sea temperatures are at a maximum in September and October. Cyclones sometimes affect parts of northern Australia as well, forming in the same way but they would happen in March or April – their time of maximum sea temperatures. Do they have any effect on our own weather systems? The truth is: nobody really knows.

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Dry stone waller Barry Herbert, from Farrington Gurney, was named Champion of Champions

A newly-restored 1918 steam traction engine made its first local appearance at the show, courtesy of Kelston Sparkes from Stanton Wick. Its John Fowler BB1 (left), a familiar site at the show, was joined by a similar ancient giant (right), which the company acquired in 1995 and started restoring in 2008. Alan Sparkes is pictured (third from right) with some of the team.

Society president Ed Lyons (left) with champion ploughgman Michael Holloway Jessica and Chloe admire the Champion of Champions trophy

Andy and pet Lily enjoy the atmosphere PAGE 10 • MENDIP TIMES • NOVEMBER 2013

Time for lunch

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MENDIP PLOUGHING MATCH Keeping to the straight and narrow

The view across the site

Chewton Mendip school council

Preparing lunch

Judging the entries (l to r) Andrew Armstrong, Charlie Ogborne and George Vauden

Hedging competitors Hayley Dorrington, Ranger with the National Trust and NT volunteer Chris McFee MENDIP TIMES • NOVEMBER 2013 • PAGE 11

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Around the local shows

FROM all the photos and articles in the press, readers will have noticed that we actually had three ploughing matches in our area in September. They were good days out in the countryside with beautiful weather. This year the matches were fairly close together but each one is different. First came With MARY the North Somerset event on September 14th, JAMES MBE organised by the agricultural society and sited at the farm of Glyn and Felicity James in Chew Magna. This one has a produce show which always attracts many entries. Preparing farm buildings for a produce show is quite a feat. Ploughing was on land kindly made available by H. Curtis and Son. The second one was the Vintage organised by North Somerset Vintage Tractor Society, held at the farm of Tony Baker in Chew Stoke. This had some wonderful old tractors and ploughs, with a special visit from Nikki Lyons of Blagdon with their superb black Friesland stallions giving carriage rides, plus an unexpected visit from Robert Harding with his two Clydesdales and training cart. Finally the Mendip Match, the biggest, held at Green Ore by kind permission of Bob King and family. There were old tractors, new tractors, heavy horses and two splendid Fowler steam engines that pulled a reversible plough backwards and forwards by cable across a field.

Roger Triggol on the old plough

It is worth noting that all these events are almost solely run by volunteers and the sites made available by landowners. The ladies who prepare the lunches make a huge contribution as do those who organise the produce show. They are all great events, long may they continue. Now to rural crime, a real burden on the industry. At the Dairy Show we were invited to hear the Avon and Somerset police commissioner who is focusing on rural crime. There are things farmers can do to help themselves such as the Farmwatch scheme, painting postcodes on the top of vehicles, locking up securely etc. At the end of the day though, trespass, unless it is aggravated, is not a notifiable offence. It is a somewhat creepy feeling when you know that someone has been wandering around the farm at night, leaving gates open, lamping, inspecting buildings etc. We attended the first meeting of the Rural Business Forum at Winford Manor when a chief engineer told us about the concept, development and delivery of the world’s first 1000mph car being built near Bristol. The next meeting is on November 21st when we will hear ‘the story so far’ of Yeo Valley.

Details: Andy Dodd on 07759 586321

Built in Britain for British Farmers Available now from your local dealer

UPHILL & SON LTD Chewton Mendip 01761 241270 Main JCB agriculture distributors for Somerset, South Glos. and West Wilts. PAGE 12 • MENDIP TIMES • NOVEMBER 2013

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Guy Salmon Bristol’s Dealer Principal – above and beyond! EARLY in October, our Dealer Principal, Amanda Binner-Vaughan, left the U.K to begin a two-week journey during which she successfully reached the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro in North Eastern Tanzania. Mount Kilimanjaro is the highest mountain in Africa, and, at 5,895 metres (19,341 ft) is the highest freestanding mountain in the world. Amanda decided to embark on this adventure in order to raise funds for her chosen charity, Velindre Cancer Centre, where her late father, Tony received excellent care, and where the highest level of support was extended to the entire family during what was a particularly difficult time for them all. The journey to the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro included seven days of high altitude ascent following the Lemosho route to the summit. The route was over 70km long and involved an average of nine hours trekking per day. The summit climb started at midnight eventually battling to the summit at 8.45am followed by 2200m of decent, 18 hours in total!! Amanda has many happy memories of this venture, and says that it was amazing to be above the clouds for seven days, with spectacular views. The temperatures varied from as high as 26 degrees by day to -20 degrees on summit night. “It was an amazing experience. Although much tougher than I had expected. I’m really glad I trained very hard as it enabled me to enjoy this once in a lifetime experience. When I arrived at the highest summit, Uhuru Point, it was very emotional as you remember why you are doing the challenge. I know my dad would be really proud of me.”

All costs for this journey were funded by Amanda, but friends and well-wishers are able to donate to Velindre Cancer Centre by visiting The staff at Guy Salmon Land Rover Bristol congratulate Amanda on her success in completing this journey.


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Dairy, dairy, q uite contr ar y Words and pictures by Mark Adler

MORE than 250 of the country’s finest dairy cattle competed for the honour of being named the champion of the 2013 Dairy Show at the Royal Bath and West Showground at Shepton Mallet. The cream of the dairy crop may have been on show at the one-day event, but farmers are still losing money on the milk they produce, according to Old Mill business advisers, one of the supporters of the one-day event. The accountants and financial planners, with its headquarters in Wells, say their dairy farming clients’ costs – in the year to March 2013 – increased by more than three pence per litre. Old Mill director Pat Tomlinson said: “The year to 2013 was an ‘annus horribilis’ for milk production … the biggest cost increases were, perhaps unsurprisingly, in feed which went up by 2.12ppl leading to a 1.5p fall in the ‘milk/feed price difference’.” That did not detract from the fact that the Dairy Show is very much a social event; a chance for farmers to catch up and

Classes for various breeds of cattle and interbreed competitions took place throughout the day

compare their fortunes, see (and hopefully buy) some of the latest machinery and discuss the latest innovations in feed and care, all with some serious business networking thrown in – the huge number of trade stands was evidence of the event’s significance. The day also featured a lively Great Milk Debate with guests including NFU Dairy

Young workers recognised

Board chairman Mansel Raymond and David Handley, from Farmers for Action. Avon and Somerset Police and Crime Commissioner Sue Mountstevens hosted the first Rural Crime Conference and promised farmers and those living in the countryside that the police will be getting increasingly tough in their efforts to tackle crime.

RACHEL Churches, of Godney near Wells, has been named the overall winner in an award scheme aimed at encouraging young people to consider a career in the dairy industry. Organised by the Somerset Dairy Careers Project, a Big Lottery-funded scheme managed by the Community Council for Somerset, the awards were presented at the Dairy Show. There were six categories, with Rachel winning the Agricultural Dairy Trainee Award, sponsored by Bakers of Haselbury Pluknett, before taking the It’s All About Dairy award. A thrilled Rachel Churches (centre) with the other winners and sponsors at the awards ceremony Rachel said: “It has opened up a vast (Frome) given to Joe and Rachel Horler from amount of opportunities including * Mitchells Chartered Accountants Agri- Maundrils Farm, Highbridge, for their gaining two work experience efforts to help and support young people business Trainee Award: Thomas placements whilst talking to companies to start a career in the dairy industry. Woolacott (Glastonbury) about the awards at the Dairy Show. I Joe and Rachel said: “It has been * Greenslade Taylor Hunt Work am looking forward to this and without great to be involved and we were the Somerset Dairy Careers Awards I’m Experience Award: Henry Rossiter delighted to win the employer’s award. sure this wouldn’t have been possible.” (Leigh Woods) We hope to continue promoting dairy in The other category winners were: * Bridgwater College Further and different ways, if you enjoy what you * Lye Cross Farm Processing Trainee Higher Education Award: Matthew do – and for us that is dairy farming – Award: Alice Hannon (Wellington) Woollaston (Wiveliscombe) The Dairy Employer Award, then it is easy and rewarding to share * Bigwoods Agri & Deutz Fahr Engineering Trainee Award: Jack Smiles sponsored by Mole Valley Farmers, was that enthusiasm with others.”


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Andrew Vickery, from Old Mill, presents the Champion Interbreed Pairs award to Robert and Matthew Wills for their Holstein cattle

Becky Chester (second right) won the first Dairy Farm Vet of the Future award, organised by Peter Clarke, a veterinary member of the show’s dairy committee. Becky is pictured receiving her award from Neil Richardson, from competition sponsor BOCM Pauls, with runners-up Peter Siviter (left) and Chloe Garnett

The Dairy Show means business: trade stands line the main avenue

Brian Miller, from Dunwear near Bridgwater, enjoyed an excellent show, winning the Champion Holstein award with Rosa, who lost out on the supreme championship by the narrowest of margins. Brian also won the award for the champion Brown Swiss

The supreme champion Sandyford Fable, from Leicestershire, with owner Blaise Tomlinson and his team. They were presented with their award by Bath and West vice president John Vintcent

Three local farmers were awarded for their dairy skills by the farming team at Shepton Mallet Vets. Ryan Sandercock, from Y Farms, Ray Creed, from Southdown Farm, West Pennard and Stephen Bendall, from New Farm, Marksbury, are pictured with vets Paddy Gordon, Sotiros Karvountzis, Peter Morley and Michael Head MENDIP TIMES • NOVEMBER 2013 • PAGE 15

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Dear Mendip Times, The North Somerset Motor Sports Club has been organising offroad motorcycle events for over 50 years and we are, as ever, looking for land suitable for motorcycle trials. The ideal land is woodlands or very rough grazing (the rougher the better) with some area available for parking of vans and trailers. North Somerset specialise in running time and observation trials which are run for one hour (occasionally two) over a course with six observed sections. The event is limited to 60 riders and the vast majority are based locally. We are governed by the ACU (Auto Cycle Union) which is the main governing body for motorcycle sport in Britain and are fully covered with insurance for landowners, riders, officials and third party risks. We tend to run in the Lulsgate, Pensford and West Harptree areas but would happily spread our wings or even pass on contact details to fellow clubs more local to any land offered. Obviously we do not expect anyone to allow use of land free of charge, unless we can find a benevolent landowner, and would be happy to discuss fees for use of any land. Whilst we are particularly looking for land for trials, there are also local clubs running moto-cross (scrambles) and grass track so if anyone felt they had land which might be suitable for such events I would be happy to put landowners in contact with them. Steve Worner, North Somerset Committee Member Dear Mendip Times, I read with interest your article regarding Italian POWs in the exThales factory in Wells. There was however no reference to the influx of German POWs after D-Day to the same camp. As a little boy, we had one of these German POWs allocated to us at Church Farm, Corston. His name was Hans and he lived with us in the house. I still remember his kindness today. Every month my father, recently discharged from the RAF, would take him back to the Wells camp for a haircut. Indeed I recall that some of the adjoining farmers, The Gays, Babours and Gullicks come to mind, had German POWs as well. These POW’s were greatly prized for their work ethic. Hans left us in about 1947 shortly before we moved to Herefordshire. Whether true, but I was told that The Military Police visited one local farm to re-intern their prisoner, as he was suspected of Nazi war crimes. There may be someone alive who has knowledge of this claim. Des Gillingham Sutton Wick



Dear Mendip Times, The Dog Show Committee is a small group that organises both the Open and Companion Dog Shows that are part of the MidSomerset Agricultural Society Show (the Mid-Somerset Show) held each year in August. Both Shows have grown over the years and we are, therefore, endeavouring to enlarge the committee. Owning and/or showing a dog is not essential, just a love of them and an interest in being involved with the organisation of the shows. They meet in committee five or six times a year to arrange the classes, schedules, catalogues, book judges, find sponsors; in fact, sort out every single detail that makes for a successful show on the day. If you are interested in joining the committee please contact Gillian Davies, Dog Show Committee Chairman on 01749 880563. Kind regards, Christine Barham Show Secretary Mid-Somerset Agricultural Society Dear Mendip Times, On behalf of Lenny’s Coffee Shop in Shipham I’m writing to thank you and Sue Gearing for the publication of her Summer circle through Winterhead walk published in the August edition of Mendip Times. The walk routed through Shipham and highlighted Lenny’s Coffee Shop as a refreshment stop. As a result Lenny’s has had one of its best summers ever with walkers following the walk dropping in for coffee, home-made cakes, jacket potatoes etc. Lenny’s is a VERY small (10 seats) and entirely volunteer-run coffee shop in the centre of Shipham. It was established as an outreach of St Leonard’s Church for the benefit of the community. Although it is intended not to be profit making, profits are made and we support many local charities. These have included: Children’s Hospice South West, Bristol Oncology and Eye Hospitals, Weston Foodbank. We have a charity box available for donations from our customers (in lieu of tips) and, as our prices are low, our customers, though few in number, tend to be quite generous! This has enabled us to support other charities such as; Air Ambulance, Clic and Weston Hospice. The extra visitors to the coffee shop will enable us to extend our charity support. Lenny’s is open Tuesday-Friday 11am-3pm all year round except for late December early January when all of our helpers take a well earned rest. We look forward to seeing our new customers again, whether following the walk or not! David Rogers Treasurer Lenny’s Coffee Shop Shipham

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Carnivalites make spectacles of themselves!

SHEPTON Mallet carnival committee members hope these fun glasses will prove a big hit with the crowds lining the streets for this year’s spectacular procession. Organisers decided to have a fresh look at the way they fundraise on the night and hit upon the idea of selling glowin-the-dark spectacles. The non-toxic glasses are made from lightsticks and makers Pearl Clifford, Don Clifford and Liz claim they will glow for Jordan try on the glasses up to eight hours. The glasses are being sponsored by optometrist Christopher Young. A spokesman for Shepton Mallet Carnival said: “The aim is for everyone at the event to be able to join in and wear them during the procession; imagine the sight and atmosphere all the way along the route if spectators, marshals, collectors, police, judges and carnival club road crews were all wearing them.” The spectacles will cost £1 and will be on sale in Shepton Mallet from Friday, November 1st. All proceeds will be added to the street collection and will then be distributed to the local groups who help collect on the night and other charities in the area. This year’s Shepton Mallet Carnival takes place on Wednesday, November 13th.

Carnival committee members with Christopher Young

Reaping the harvest of talents

Show raffle cheques

THE Royal Agricultural Benevolent Society and Shepton Mallet Tourist Information Office each received cheques for more than £400 from the proceeds of a raffle held during the MidSomerset Show. Show chairman Ian Harvey is pictured with (left) Pam Wills, from RABI, and Lorraine Pratten, from the TIC.

AT the Harvest Supper in East Harptree, the Festival of Talents revealed its final total – just under £4,500 from an outlay of only £330. So the churchwarden’s investment in village talents has produced a fine harvest. Instead of the annual village fete, parishioners were invited to accept a ten pound stake and do their best to make the money grow. No recent fete in the village has achieved such a total, yet the churchwardens have agreed that the Harvest of Talents will not be an annual event. Churchwarden, Barry Rider, said: “It has been enormous fun but the tradition of the church fete should also be kept alive. So we’ll be bringing it back next year.” With hand-painted silk scarves, family trees, pots of jam, East Harptree churchwarden Rosemary Veitch (centre) with some of the 33 contributors to the Harvest of Talents. MENDIP TIMES • NOVEMBER 2013 • PAGE 17

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Beckington’s wacky races!


Photography by Mark Adler

FAMILIES, workmates and friends took to the streets of Beckington, near Frome, for the village’s annual go-kart rally. Organised by Beckington Pre-School and Beckington Cricket Club, the course featured a series of obstacles from the challenging to the embarrassing.

The sand trap is safely tackled by the team on the Pre-School Special

Here comes the bride Freya Banks (left) and Imogen Covill raise their glasses to chauffeur Callum McGillivray on the Glamour Bus

The Superheroes of Frome: Lily (seated), Howard and Clare Vause PAGE 18 • MENDIP TIMES • NOVEMBER 2013

Lisa Gauntlett, Julie Buckley and Caroline Whitton on the cake stall

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Our Services Include: Commercial and Residential Property Wills and Probate Litigation and Personal Injury Criminal and Family Law Agricultural, Business and Commercial Employment Shepton Mallet: 57 High Street, Shepton Mallet, Somerset, BA4 5AQ. Tel: 01749 343091

Glastonbury: 11 Chilkwell Street, Glastonbury, Somerset, BA6 8DL. Tel: 01458 832510

Robin Weelen was taking instructions from a client who has been charged with a fairly serious motoring offence earlier this week. e client told him that since being charged with that offence she has once again been charged with speeding but told Robin that she is always very careful to keep within the 80 miles per hour speed limit on dual carriageways. is led Robin to wonder whether everybody else was mistaken as to the current speed limit and thought it might be worth reminding our readership that the current speed limit in a built up area is 30 miles per hour, on a single carriageway (otherwise known as the national speed limit) the speed limit is 60 miles per hour and on dual carriageways and motorways the speed limit is 70 miles per hour. We are sorry if all of this sounds a little obvious but it doesn’t do any harm on occasions to be reminded as penalty points are something to be avoided at all costs. On a lighter note we once again put two teams into the Monahans Accountants quiz in Glastonbury. One of our teams came third out of 22 and we were very pleased with that. We have put teams into the Monahans quiz for many years and always find it a very enjoyable evening. Funds raised go to charity and the Monahans staff in Glastonbury put a lot of effort into the evening which is always great fun.

Castle Cary: Old Bank House, High Street, Castle Cary, Somerset, BA7 7AW. Tel: 01963 350888

Cheddar: Roley House, Church Street, Cheddar, Somerset, BS27 3RA. Tel: 01934 745400


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Page 20


Seasons to be cheerful

Butermilk roast chicken

I HAVE invested in a big slow cooker because I like things cooked long and slow – and energy prices are certainly not going down! As it’s time for Hallowe’en and Bonfire Night, I thought I would begin with a soup – something sweet and wholesome for a With JUNE crowd. MACFARLANE Emma Macdonald, of The Bay Tree Food Company, has a new cookbook out (see page 22). It’s full of delicious recipes, one of which, Buttermilk Chicken, I couldn’t wait to try.


Celeriac is that knobbly vegetable in the swede and turnip aisle. It tastes of a refined version of celery and it has lots of uses. Mash by itself, or add to mashed potato, or roast with other vegetables, or use in a salad, or make soup … the list is endless. Here I cook it with apple to make a luxurious and rather elegant soup. The apple sharpens up the dish and lends sweetness


Sweat the celeriac, onion, garlic and celery in a little olive oil in a big pan. When they are soft add the apples, water and the chicken stock and simmer for about half an hour (or put all of the above in the slow cooker and cook on low for six-eight hours). Taste and season. Whizz everything in a blender or use a stick blender in the pan. Add the cream and stir to mix. Re-heat briefly. Serve with a drizzle of olive oil and some chopped sage.


(From Emma Macdonald’s book “Home Deli ilk erm butt 284 ml Recipes”) salt sea 1 tbsp Buttermilk used as a y hone 1 tbsp marinade makes the tard mus n Dijo 1 tbsp chicken tender and moist. If a extr plus ika, 1 tsp papr you can lay your hands on kling for sprin some real Mendip ed halv es, clov ic 4 garl buttermilk – the by-product ys lengthwa of butter-making – that ken chic oz 5 lb 1.5 kg/3 would be ideal but failing oil olive 1 tsp that, use commercially er pepp nd grou freshly produced buttermilk, or add four teaspoons of lemon juice to whole milk and wait a few minutes until it curdles.



Mix together the buttermilk, salt, honey, paprika and garlic in a bowl and season with pepper. Wipe the chicken and put into a large ziplock freezer bag. Pour the marinade into the bag, seal and turn to coat. Put the bag in a roasting tin and leave in the fridge for up to 24 hours, turning occasionally. Preheat the oven to 190˚C. Remove chicken from bag and put in a foil-lined roasting tin. Discard marinade. Drizzle oil over chicken and season with paprika, salt and pepper. Roast for 1hr 10mins or until cooked through, basting occasionally. Leave to rest, covered with foil, for 15 mins before serving. PAGE 20 • MENDIP TIMES • NOVEMBER 2013


2 kg celeriac, peeled and coarsely chopped 1 medium onion, coarsely chopped 3 cloves of garlic, quartered 1 stalk celery, trimmed & coarsely chopped 4 dessert apples, peeled, cored and chopped 1.5 litres of water 1 litre chicken stock salt and cracked black pepper 125ml pouring cream 2 tbsp fresh sage leaves, chopped 4 tbsp olive oil


This is a description, not an instruction! It’s one of those mix it by hand batter-cakes and the addition of grated squash keeps the cake moist and delicious. You could use pumpkin, but most of the pumpkins on sale at this time of year are for carving not cooking and have no flavour.



300g self-raising flour 300g light muscovado sugar 3 tsp mixed spice 2 tsp bicarbonate of soda 175g sultanas ½ tsp salt 4 eggs, beaten 200g butter, melted zest 1 orange 1 tbsp orange juice 500g (peeled weight) pumpkin or butternut squash flesh, grated extra orange juice for drizzling

Heat the oven to 180ºC. Line a 30cm x 20cm baking tray with baking paper. In a large bowl, mix all the dry ingredients together. Whisk the eggs, melt the butter, allow the butter to cool a little and add the eggs, orange zest and juice to the butter. Mix together and add to dry ingredients. Add squash and mix well. Bake for 30 mins until cake is golden brown and firm to the touch. Allow to rest in tin for a few minutes then turn out. Prick all over with a sharp skewer and drizzle orange juice over cake. Cool completely. Finish with icing or buttercream, or just leave it as it is.

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Page 21

Christmas at the Bishop’s Palace

THE Bishop’s Palace in Wells is taking bookings for Christmas parties and getting the logs ready for the welcoming roaring fire in the entrance hall, while head chef, Jamie Mould has created a menu featuring British classics cooked with local ingredients, including vegetables grown in the palace’s community garden. The Undercroft is available for private hire throughout December for parties of 50 – 120. Or join them on one of their party nights where groups of eight or more can book tables and join in with others making for a truly festive occasion. Details: Helen Garrett 01749 988111 ext 209. Book and pay your deposit before 1 November and receive a free welcome drink on arrival!


Main Menu Served Lunchtimes 12 – 2.30pm & Evenings 6 – 9.30pm

Why not come and try our new winter menu prepared by our team of top chefs StartErS and Light BitES (v) Homemade Soup of the Day – £4.95 (gf) (v) Warm Salad of Winter Vegetables, Mushrooms & Chestnuts – £5.95/£12.00 Creamy Smoked Haddock with Spinach, Local Cheddar and Poached Egg – £6.25/£12.50 Pan – Fried Fillet of Sea Bream with Red Pepper Fritter and Salsa Verde -£6.75 (gf) Roasted Figs, Parma Ham and Goats Cheese with Rocket & Pine Nut Salad – £6.50 (gf) Crispy Pork Belly with Asian Slaw, Peanuts, Chilli And Coriander – £6.75 (gf) Warm Smoked Salmon with Fennel, Pomegranate and Watercress – £6.95/£14.00 For tWo to SharE (v) A Selection of Breads, Olives, Fussel’s Oils and Homemade Pesto – £6.75 (v) Camembert Fondue, baked in the box and Studded with Garlic and Herbs with Pickles & Bread – £12.95 Charcuterie Board with Crusty Bread, Homemade Pesto, Fussel’s Oils – £12.95 MainS (gf) Smoked Haddock Chowder with Mussels & Pancetta, Served with Crusty Bread – £10.50 Homemade Beef Burger with Coleslaw and Hand-Cut Chips – £10.95 (Cheddar, Blue Cheese or Bacon extra 80p) (v) Onion Marmalade, Goats Cheese & Pine Nut Mille Feuille with Butternut Squash Purée and Rocket Salad – £10.25 Malmesbury Gold Sausages with Grain Mustard Mash and Onion Gravy – £10.50 (gf) Confit Chicken Legs, ree Bean and Toulouse Sausage Cassoulet – £12.95 Pan – Fried Duck Breast with Celeriac Gratin, Braised Red Cabbage and Raspberry Jus – £16.50 (gf) Pan – Fried Trout Fillets, Roasted Peppers, Tomatoes & New Potatoes with Pesto Cream – £10.75 (gf) Slow Roasted Shoulder of Lamb with Roasted Butternut Squash, Kale and Chilli Jam – £15.50 (v) Spiced Butterbean, Tomato & Vegetable Stew with Herb Crust, Served with Salad and Crusty Bread – £9.95 (gf) Char-grilled Prime 10oz Rump Steak served with Hand-Cut Chips & Salad – £18.50 (gf) Char-grilled Prime 10oz Rib-Eye Steak served with Hand-Cut Chips & Salad – £20.95 Extra Sauces; Pepper, Cafe de Paris Butter, Blue Cheese- All £1.95 ExtraS Hand-Cut Chips – £3.50 • Side Salad – £2.50 • Bread – 75p • Cafe de Paris Bread – £4.50 • Skinny Fries – £3 • Side of Vegetables – £2.50 (v) = Vegetarian (gf) = Gluten Free

The Plough Inn, High Street, Wrington, North Somerset, BS40 5QA Tel : 01934 862871


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Page 22


Emma’s deli delights By Mark Adler

WITH delicatessens now commonplace in virtually every town and a deli counter in every supermarket, there is virtually no limit to the variety of food from around the world which can be bought in an instant. But while many consumers may take them for granted, some of the mysteries about delis and the goods they sell still remain – mostly along the lines of: “what do you do with those?” Emma Macdonald, a trained chef and founder of The Bay Tree Food Company, attempts to dispel some of the myths and shares her culinary secrets for the first time in her new book, The Bay Tree Home Deli Cookbook. Using Bay Tree’s products as inspiration, but drawing on influences from around the world, Emma explains how many shop-bought items can be made quite simply at home. But if the thought of curing your own bacon or creating buttermilk is too much, then Emma shows how to turn deli-bought ingredients into memorable dishes and also how to put together great meals and mix-and-match both home-cooked and store-bought foods. Emma, who lives with her family near Glastonbury, trained as a chef in the south of France. Cooking took her to Hong Kong, Canada and the United States and she collected recipes from her travels. The Bay Tree Food Company was created – literally – on the kitchen table. Having grown up on the family’s homemade cucumber relish, Emma had the simple idea that full-flavoured, quality chutneys and preserves needed to be brought to the speciality sector and The Bay Tree was launched in 1994. It had always been her ambition to write a cookery book but setting up the company and raising a family meant the idea remained just that until January 2012 when she was approached by a publisher.

Emma Macdonald – inspiration from around the world

Emma said: “It wasn’t that long ago that delicatessens were quite rare but we are all now so used to them. What I have tried to do is demystify some of the ingredients and to show how they can be used in different ways, often quite simply. “The book is quite an eclectic mix of things, many of which I picked up on my travels. Many of the recipes are really quite uncomplicated, although the idea might appear daunting. But my message is: ‘if you have time, give it a go’.” Emma, whose main role at the Bay Tree Food Company is New Product Development, is now working on a second book about preserving. It is due to be published next July.



Emma giving a cookery demonstration at Fortnum & Mason in London

MENDIP Times has two copies of the Bay Tree Home Deli Cookbook – both signed by Emma – to give away in a competition. To enter, please answer the following question: in which year was the Bay Tree Food Company founded? Please send your answers on a postcard to: Cookbook Competition, Mendip Times, Coombe Lodge, BS40 7RG. Entries must reach us by Friday, November 15th. The first two correct entries chosen will each receive a book. The editor’s decision is final.

The Bay Tree Home Deli Cookbook costs £20 and is on sale at farm shops (including Jon Thorner’s), delis and book stores including Waterstone’s. It is also available for sale on-line at and on Amazon.


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Page 23

Thatchers open day


The Thatchers Open Day continues to grow in popularity, with 3,000 visitors this year from right across the country. Three generations of the Thatcher family are pictured at the event (l to r) Anne, Peter, John and Ann Thatcher (back), Eleanor (centre) and Martin, (front right).


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Page 24


New local business

Christmas 2013 at


English & Mediterranean Restaurant, Wells

Christmas Party Lunch Menu 3 courses £17.95 per person

Christmas Party Buffet Menu 2 courses £15.00 per person

Christmas Party Dinner Menu 3 courses £22.95 per person

Christmas Day Lunch Menu 5 courses £65 per person

New Years Eve Big Quiz Night! £10 per person (tables of 6)

For more information and menus please call Nicola on 01749 678111 email • or pop in to Union Street, Wells, Somerset BA5 2PU

UÜxtw 9 UxçÉÇw

BAREFOOT Stonebaked Pizza Co is a new local business producing highquality Italian-style pizza from a wood-fired oven snugly fitted on the back of a little Italian van. Gill Aylott and Rob Ellis who started the business in July 2013 said: “We have just one goal, and that is to bring


Barefoot Stonebaked Pizza Co.

[ÉÅx@ut~xw c{ÉàÉzÜtÑ{|v Y|ÄÄxw ÜÉÄÄá? àxtá? uÜxtw? vt~xá? ÑÜ|Çàá yÜÉÅ vÉyyxxá? ÄâÇv{xá? ÑÉÜ~ Ñ|xá yÜÉÅ à{x ÑÜxáxÜäxá? fÉÅxÜáxà@ Ñ|v~Äxá? }tÅá utáxw eÉzxÜ hÇâáâtÄ cÉÜ~ c|x VÉÅÑtÇç tÇw v{âàÇxçá [çÅtÇ tÇw Ñt|Çà|Çzá uç cxàxÜ ]tç alice and her team welcome you to Chewton Mendip’s village store – newspapers and general goods also on sale Open: Monday-Friday 7am-5.30pm Saturday 7.30am-5pm

UÜxtw 9 UxçÉÇw

High Street, Chewton Mendip, BA3 4LJ

01761 240820 PAGE 24 • MENDIP TIMES • NOVEMBER 2013

Mobile Woodfired Pizza Perfection Available for events and private functions – for more information contact: Gill & Rob on 07443 465425 email:

you the freshest and most delicious pizza you have ever tasted. We use the best Italian Mozzarella, and devised our own dough, even growing our own chillies! We try and source all our topping ingredients locally and promise you a taste you won’t forget! “With our little retro van ‘Pepe’ we are small enough to fit on a driveway and flexible enough to feed the multitude! We are very much looking forward to meeting and cooking for lots of people around the Mendip area, and creating something fresh, tasty and different!”

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Page 25


Oca anyone?

OCA is a new crop for me and as I write this it’s just a few weeks until harvest time. An ancient Peruvian staple, in this climate they produce their new potato-like tubers in response to shortening days around the end of October or November. They are frost tender and the tubers With JAKE should be dug up 2-3 weeks after the WHITSON above ground parts of the plant have been frosted. It is a close relative of our native wood sorrel and indeed if you pull up a wood sorrel plant you can find tiny little tubers attached to the roots which look exactly like miniature oca tubers (these should on no account be eaten however, as they contain dangerous quantities of oxalic acid). The advantage they have over that much more popular Peruvian tuber, the potato, is that they are much more disease resistant – crucially they are not at all susceptible to potato blight. Also they apparently – I have not yet tried them – have a distinctive lemony flavour (owing to oxalic acid – the same acid which gives rhubarb its tang). I have found oca to be extremely hardy and vigorous both in my garden in the Mendips and also in a trial patch I planted in an extremely exposed situation 230m up in the Preseli Hills in west Wales. The one problem I have encountered with them is that the plants occasionally seem to grow too leggy and the stems then snap or bruise at the base causing that stem to die off. A good remedy to this is to ramp up the stems with earth regularly, as you would with potatoes – this also apparently dramatically increases the yield. Since I’ve never before eaten an oca tuber I think that a recipe at this point would be a little disingenuous. However by the next issue the harvest will be in so watch this space!

Jacob Whitson is a chef and food writer who has worked in many of the West Country’s most prestigious restaurants. He is currently working on his first book, a travelogue detailing the regional foods of Japan.



Now you see me now you don’t!

IT’S not often you can say this, but I actually find this mushroom rather pretty looking. It doesn’t have any vivid colours or unmistakable odours to recommend, it doesn’t even taste that great either, which is kind of ironic given that this is all about edible wild food. With ADRIAN Yet there is something attractive about the BOOTS elongated shape, shaggy texture, like some sort of tribal headdress, and its pure brilliant white colour with what looks like a sprinkling of coco powder on top. Even the common name is most apt, it does exactly what it says on the tin – it’s shaggy and has an inky cap! How endearing. This all sounds lovely but there is a black sheep in this family. The Shaggy Inkcap (Coprinus comatus) has a cap 5 to 12cm tall, elongated egg-shape, which is very shaggy. The cap is pure white with a little brown patch on top. The stem ranges from 10 to 20cm tall, 1 to 1.5cm wide. The stem is made up of stringy fibres and forms a hollow tube, varies from white to pink in colour. It does have a ring but is very fragile so can be missing from some examples. The gills are tightly packed, white/cream then maturing to pink and eventually black. The spores are also black. Commonly found on verges, roadsides, any grassy area that takes its fancy really (even my garden) through autumn. However, you may never see them as they come and go very quickly due to a rather nifty little trick they have, a ‘now you see me now you don’t’ habit if you like. Shaggy Inkcaps reach maturity with blinding speed and only manage to hang around for a couple of days at most. The white cap starts to go pink/red and then all of a sudden almost before your eyes goes completely black. Typical, you wake up in the morning looking forward to a great mushroom breakfast and all that’s left is a completely melted and rather evil looking black lump – thus the inkcap part of the name! This process is technically called ‘auto-deliquescence’; didn’t the Wicked Witch of the East do that too? Anyway, my advice is to pick them when they are young and white. And the black sheep of the family? Well it’s the Common Inkcap which is more squat and grey in colour and much less attractive. Despite the name it’s actually less common than its shaggy relative. Allegedly, it is edible, except if you drink any alcohol after eating it you will be properly poisoned. A chemical called ‘coprine’ renders the liver unable to break down the alcohol. So if it comes to a choice between this fungus or the pub, I’m afraid to say that mine will be a pint please! Adrian Boots is a Landscape Ecologist, Wild Food Forager and Adventure Activity provider. You can visit his web site to learn more about wild food foraging and activities you can do with him on the Mendip Hills.


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Page 26

Christmas open evening

THE Street Sings Choir will be welcoming guests at the anticipated Jon Thorner’s Christmas Open Evening on Friday November 29th. They will help raise funds for selected local charities, to which Jon Thorner’s will make a sizeable donation. Alongside this, Jon Thorner’s is hosting a wine tasting in the Coffee Den between 7pm and 9pm, raising money for Dorset and Somerset Air Ambulance, with an optional entrance fee. The Christmas Open Evening and wine tasting is being hosted on the site of Bridge Farm Shop in Pylle, 5.30 – 8pm.

Christmas at Blostins

BLOSTINS is a bistro-style restaurant serving fresh food with the emphasis on locally-sourced produce. The décor is modern, bright and the atmosphere friendly and relaxed. Cooking style is modern British with plenty of choice on the fixed price menu or try one of their seasonal specialties which could include prime beef fillet, venison and fresh fish delivered from St. Ives in Cornwall. From December 3rd to 23rd the restaurant is open Tuesday to Saturday for Christmas lunches and dinners. The restaurant is perfect for small groups in their private function room seating up to 20 or larger parties in their main dining area. Menus are available to view and download on their website

Celebrate the festive season with us!

Christmas menus are available lunch and dinner from Tuesday, 3rd December to Monday 23rd December Blostins Christmas Lunch Menu 2013 £16.50 for two courses • £19.50 for three courses Blostins Christmas Dinner Menu 2013 £19.50 for two courses • £23.50 for three courses New Year’s Eve 5 course dinner with glass of bubbly

Blostins Christmas Seasonal Specialities also available (dinner only) Restaurant and private dining room available for parties (please ring for details)

Open during December for Lunches and Dinners

Telephone: 01749 343648 • Visit to download the Christmas menus PAGE 26 • MENDIP TIMES • NOVEMBER 2013

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Page 28


A celebration of food

The Great Milk Debate, held in the Bishop’s Barn

THE first Wells Food Festival – featuring the Great Somerset Sunday Lunch and a host of other events – has been hailed as a massive celebration of local produce. Markets, a forage hunt with Mendip Times contributor Adrian Boots, a debate about milk and a vintage tea party were just some of the events during the day across the city.

Pavla Kislerova, from Great Elm, took to the streets with her Hej Gro products

Paddy O’Hagan (right), one of the organisers of the day at the Great Sunday Lunch with guest speaker Matthew Fort, an author and judge of BBC2’s Great British Menu

Members of Wells Country Market on their stall in the artisan producers market

This pumpkin cake was the winner of a competition judged by Fiona Cairns, maker of the Royal wedding cake PAGE 28 • MENDIP TIMES • NOVEMBER 2013

Wells Blue School ran an apple juice stall

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Butcombe Open Day

Page 29


THE Butcombe Brewery open day was voted a great success, with 1,000 visitors, despite appalling weather earlier in the day, compared to 600 last year. Some 2,000 pints of cask beer were consumed and over 1,000 pints of Butcombe Blond and Ashton Press Cider. The Story Group were selling burgers and other food and putting on tractor rides to their nearby farm, with entertainment from the High and Dry Shanty Band and Mendip Morris. Geoff and Ina Banford also made an appearance with their Bobby Our Sheep children’s books.









With a wide range of beers in various size of container, to suit all occasions, together with branded fleeces, sweatshirts, T-shirts etc, as well as glassware, waiters friends and key rings amongst other things. There is something for everyone at the Brewery Shop in Wrington, Bristol. See website for further details. Shop opening hours: Monday–Friday 9am–5pm, Saturday 9am–12noon. Closed Sundays and Bank Holiday Mondays.


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Page 30


Christmas at the Carps

Christmas Party Menu

Two Courses £19.95 • ree Courses £25.95


French Onion Soup with Parmesan Crouton Crayfish Cocktail with Marie Rose Dressing Twice Baked ree Cheese Soufflé Game Terrine with Cornichons & Crostini Fig & Blue Cheese Tart with Dressed Salad Leaves


Braised Blade of Beef with Roast Potatoes, Red Cabbage & Red Wine Jus Parsnip, Cranberry & Chestnut Loaf with Cranberry Sauce Slow Roasted Belly Pork & Crackling with Black Pudding Mash, Stir Fried Winter Greens & Apricot Compote Hake Fillet with Gremalada Crust served on Roasted Squash Risotto with Herb Oil Roast Turkey with Roast Potatoes, Stuffing, Pigs in Blankets, Honey Roast Parsnips & Bread Sauce All main courses will be served with carrots, sautéed sprouts & mashed swede

THE Carpenters Tavern are now taking bookings for Christmas Parties! They have an excellent fixed price menu with an option of two or three courses, offering traditional Christmas dishes alongside a range of alternatives to suit all tastes. All their starters, mains and delicious desserts are made from the finest locally sourced produce. If you are looking to be wined and most certainly dined this December then you can do no better than the Carpenters Tavern.

Young baker makes her market debut

Home Made Desserts

Christmas Pudding with Rum Sauce & Brandy Butter Sherry Trifle Sticky Toffee Pudding with Ice-cream Mulled Wine Poached Pear with White Choc & Honeycomb Ice-cream Spiced Apple & Plum Crumble with Custard Selection of Cheese, Crackers & Chutney (£2.50 Supplement) Tea or Coffee with mince Pies We have a selection of Red & White Wines by the glass to compliment your meal, please ask for a wine list


Wells: every Wednesday 9am-2.30pm at the Market Place All other markets 9am-1pm unless otherwise marked*

Friday 1st Wincanton (9am-12noon)* Saturday 2nd Midsomer Norton & Axbridge Sunday 3rd Frome Supermarket (10am-2pm)* Saturday 9th Frome & Keynsham Friday 15th Cheddar (10am-2pm)* Saturday 16th Crewkerne Saturday 23rd Glastonbury & Yeovil (9am-2pm)* Friday 29th Burnham-on-Sea follow us @SFMMarkets For more information phone 01373 814646 or visit

Powering Farming’s Future Tel: 01225 667151 Web: PAGE 30 • MENDIP TIMES • NOVEMBER 2013

Rosanna on her stall at Midsomer Norton farmers market

THE youngest stall holder to join Somerset Farmers Markets enjoyed a near sell-out success on her first day of trading. Rosanna Mohn, 17, made her debut at Midsomer Norton’s October market, selling a range of cakes and pastries. Trading as Pistachio, Rosanna – who is studying for her A Levels in English, Art and Business Studies at Writhlington School – used garden produce from her home in Coleford in several of the recipes, including raspberries in her raspberry blondie cake bars and beetroot in the popular beetroot and chocolate cake. Some of the products were gluten-free; the banana cake was sugar-free. Rosanna is the daughter of SFM co-ordinator Louise Hall, who said: “She is the youngest trader we have had, but she met all the criteria.” Rosanna is considering whether to study art or interior design at university but said baking had always been her passion: “I have tried to add my own ideas to the recipes. It was a question of finding a good variety of products for my first market. “I have always loved baking and, whatever I do in the future, I will always be baking.”

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Page 31


Perfect pies

PiE and ME at

to experiment and adapt; she is currently developing a new range of cold-cutting pork pies. With recent success in both the Taste of the West Awards and the South West Bakers Divisional Show, it’s little wonder that you have to visit one of their market stalls early to be sure of finding what you want: Clive says re regularly sells out early!


MP Co anY

thE Un


rK o P

Clive prepares to take another batch of freshly-baked goodies out of the oven



THE award-winning Unusual Pork Pie and Meat Pie Company is dedicated to creating the tastiest homemade pies and quiches. All of their speciality pork pies are individually handmade at their premises in Shepton Mallet using British pork and this commitment to quality runs through their entire range. In addition to classic recipes, they are never afraid to explore new tastes and ingredients in the hunt for the perfect pie! Their selection features tried-and-true favourites and new, exciting flavours. But the family-run company – dad Clive, mum Trish and son Scott – bake far more than pork pies alone: quiches, sausage rolls, lasagne, pasties and a range of desserts are just some of the delicious offerings. And with Christmas fast approaching, the company is getting ready to meet the soaring demand for their game pies. The Unusual Pork Pie and Meat Pie Company is now beginning a new venture: the family has acquired an impressive-looking hog roast which also serves as a multipurpose cooker. It can cook a 200-pound pig – capable of feeding 150 people – as well as producing perfect burgers and other freshly-cooked food. Clive said: “We’ve always catered for events but this takes us to the next level.” The company is a familiar sight at farmers’ markets and food-related events around the area. They’ve taken part in various food festivals this year, including the recent Wells Food Festival and a similar event in Burnham-on-Sea. The preparation is largely done by Trish who is never afraid

Quality produce at affordable prices! award-winning handmade pies, quiches, pasties, lasagne and more – all freshly baked using only the best ingredients (local, wherever possible). Find them at farm shops and other outlets or visit our stands at farmers’ markets and food events.

EVER-CHANGING SPECIALS BOARD with extensive menu and seasonal daily specials Friday 15th November You are invited to an Evening with Guy Johnson. Singer, songwriter, vocalist and keyboard artist, who has provided material for Status Quo and Francis Rossi

 Bed & Breakfast en suite bedrooms in the attached refurbished Cider House always available to book on any night. Ideal location close to the Bath & West Showground and other local attractions. There are also some lovely walks in the vicinity.  Cask Marque Ales  Somerset Ciders

We can now cater for all your functions, from weddings to business events, with our new hog roast and multi-purpose cooker (up to 150 peo-

 Our full Christmas Menu details are available on-line at our web address  Our popular Quiz Nights take place every 2nd Monday in the Month  For New Year’s Eve, there will be a Fancy Dress theme, Bugsy Malone  Check the website for details of all our upcoming events

tEL: 01749 343334 Unit aB-8d anglo trading Estate, Shepton Mallet Ba4 5BY Email:



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Page 32

Relax by the fireside at the Holcombe Inn

WITH the nights drawing in and winter approaching, there’s nothing quite like relaxing in front of a roaring log fire, with a glass of something to hand. The Holcombe Inn is a country pub and restaurant with just such an atmosphere, the result of three years of dedicated work by owner Jules Berry and her team. Visitors frequently comment on the relaxed, informal atmosphere where regulars happily mingle with people coming to enjoy its award-winning food. Jules said: “We have a lovely mix of people here which makes it such a fun place in which to be. “Visitors from London love the relaxed atmosphere which we have actually worked very hard on to create. It is a destination venue, but also a pub for locals. “We might have members of a shooting party staying in our rooms or it could be a group of bat watchers.” The Holcombe Inn is also famous for its sunsets! Hardly a week goes by without a visitor being enthralled with the view; Jules has lost count of the number of photographs which have been taken! Pet dog Murphy can often be found snoozing somewhere in the bar and bikes and pairs of wellies are available for guests to borrow to enjoy the countryside. And with work by local artists adorning the walls, the Holcombe Inn is very much a place in which to spend some time.

Celebrate the festive season at The Holcombe Inn

We are now taking bookings for Christmas Day Lunch, party bookings and New Year’s Eve. See our website for all details and menus. The Holcombe Inn promises a beautiful, festively-decorated restaurant with roaring log fires and delicious Christmas menus.

New Years Eve Banquet & Dancing s n (Dance Floor And DJ) • £45 Per Per o t Dinner e u q n a e B r s u o C 3 & l e t b a s e d Ticket inclu f or Holcombe! ” H “ t h w i g i n n i n g e b g n Dress For Fun . . . anythi

The Holcombe Inn

Stratton Road, Holcombe, Bath BA3 5EB. Tel: 01761 232478 • Fax: 01761 233737. E-mail: PAGE 32 • MENDIP TIMES • NOVEMBER 2013

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Now specialising in Fresh Cornish Seafood and West Country Grilled Meats Festive Party Menu – from £16.50  Christmas Eve Early Supper from 5.00 – 8.00pm  Christmas Day 5-course Lunch £60.00 pp  Boxing Day Brunch and New Years Eve Menu  Visit our website for all details  Four AA Yellow Star Accommodation

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Starters Creamy butternut squash soup with a swirl of rocket pesto served with chunky bread Ribbons of smoked salmon, tiger tail prawn tart flavoured with dill, sun blushed tomatoes and celeriac coleslaw Deep fried brie studded with apricots, dates, ginger placed on a redcurrant red wine, port sauce Poached pear in whisky, beetroot chutney, crumbled goats cheese croute with warm hazelnut dressing Hot 3 way pork terrine, shouldered fillet and belly with sage stuffing apple puree and bubble and squeak

Mains Roast pheasant stuffed with lemon and thyme, rosemary, redcurrant and red wine sauce Bouillabaisse of salmon, seabass, mussels, prawns and herbs onions garlic croute rouille Fillet steak with onion mushroom tarragon red wine sauce with mash potato Griddled aubergine, courgette, leeks and haloumee cheese with puy lentils risotto Roast turkey stuffed with sausage, herbs, chestnuts, wrapped in smoked bacon pigs in blankets, gravy and cranberry sauce Puddings A rich chocolate pecan tart with butterscotch sauce and white chocolate ice cream Apple and custard brioche pie with Chantilly cream Christmas pudding with brandy sauce Oak-aged Cheddar cave cheese with home-made chutney Two courses £19.50 • Three courses £23.50

Church Lane, East Harptree BS40 6BD • MENDIP TIMES • NOVEMBER 2013 • PAGE 33

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MENDIP TIMES 3 High Street, Shepton Mallet, BA4 5AA


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Traditional Free House

The Bell

01749 345393

Christmas at The Bell The ideal party venue

* In-house karaoke * Live music * Party bookings * Private dining room available * Fixed menus * Buffets * Seven-seat courtesy vehicle available (pre-booked) Enjoy The Bell’s famous Sunday Carvery. Lunch served 12-2.30 (bookings advisable) Traditional Sunday Lunch the way it should be – freshly cooked and using local produce – in family-friendly surroundings

Christmas Day Lunch

Selection of Canapés on arrival STARTERS truffle oil Cream of sweet potato and parsnip soup with and herb croutons orange salad Earl Grey smoked duck with a rocket and and thyme dressing , gherkins and Beetroot cured salmon gravlax with capers sour cream é with a micro Twice baked mature Cheddar cheese souffl herb salad and tomato compote MAINS ade Yorkshire Roast sirloin of Mendip Beef with homem pudding, roast chateau potatoes and a port wine sauce kale, saffron Grilled darne of salmon with buttered curly potatoes and a tomato velouté stuffing, bacon Roast Somerset bronze turkey with chestnut wrapped chipolatas, roast chateau potatoes and a rich pan gravy and rocket Roast pumpkin risotto with pine nuts, ricotta DESSERTS Homemade broken Christmas pudding soaked fruit (Almond and cinnamon dumpling with rum and a brandy sauce) tilly and Double Chocolate torte with a Baileys Chan chocolate pearls ng and a Poached mulled wine pear, banana rice puddi roasted fig ts A selection of fine Somerset cheeses and biscui Tea, Coffee and Petit Fours


Let the music play

BANDS looking for a lively and friendly music venue are being encouraged to contact The Bell Hotel in Shepton Mallet. In recent years, music has played an important part of life at the pub with regular Friday night slots. The Bell will welcome back reggae star Troy Ellis and his band for a pre-Christmas party on Friday, December 20th. Before then, on Friday, December 13th, Clive “Minksy” Mullin and his T4Jazz band will return. The pub is also well-known for its karaoke sessions on Saturday nights and has recently installed new sound equipment allowing it to provide “karaoke on demand”, if people want to start up the music. By contrast, The Bell’s famous Sunday lunches show no sign of losing any of their popularity. The refurbished dining room – which is also available for private functions – is often fully booked. And with Christmas on the horizon, The Bell offers the perfect venue for a spontaneous get-together! Bands interested in playing at The Bell should contact Micky or Juliet with a CD and background information.

Christmas as it should be . . .

This Christmas if you are looking to get away from it all and don’t want the hassle of a burnt turkey and hard sprouts, then why not come and join us for your Christmas party? Christmas Parties from £18 per person

Christmas Day Lunch £60 per person Email: Telephone: 01934 854800 Website: Lyncombe Lodge Hotel & Restaurant, Lyncombe Drive, Churchill, BS25 5PQ

Festive Lunch and Dinner Menu

Cream of caulif lower and farmhouse Chedd ar cheese soup with chive croutons. Game Mosaic served with spiced pear chutn ey and melba toast. Prawn and smoked salmon parcel with Marti ni Marie rose sauce. Caramelized walnut, beetroot and goats cheese salad. oooo0oooo Locally bred roast turkey white & brown meat with bacon wrapped chipolata, cranberry stuffin g & a turkey jus. Spinach, blue cheese and leek potato cake with buttered kale and an artichoke puree. Pan fried salmon served on a bed of chive mash with a champagne and dill sauce. Slow braised steak and kidney with a horser adish creamed potato and Yorkshire pudding. All served with fresh seasonal vegetables oooo0oooo Whiskey marmalade bread and butter puddi ng served with Christmas pudding ice cream. Rhubarb and apple oat crumble with custar d. White and dark chocolate pannacotta with a Grand Marnier marinated Satsuma. Baked lemon tart served with clotted cream and a pistachio brittle. Tea, Coffee and mini mince pies



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Paul takes centre stage BUTCHER Paul Loader treated visitors to the L&F Jones tradeshow in Midsomer Norton to a demonstration of his team’s award-winning skills. Dave Jones, who co-ordinated the event, said: “Allowing people to see the quality of his produce and process was important to us, as we want our customers to know they are getting only the best when they choose to deal with us.” Shaun Horwood, an award-winning chef from the neighbouring Best Western Plus Centurion Hotel, later showed the attendees his culinary skills by preparing some exquisite meals created using Paul Loader’s meat. More than 50 suppliers attended the day at the company’s depot, including Clipper Tea, Orchard Pig, Marshfield Ice Cream and Bath Ales. The event was also supported by companies including Coca Cola Enterprises, Magners and McCains. The tradeshow will now become an annual event at the L & F Jones depot and the company hopes to gain the same support each year and deliver an even


The tradeshow was held in the aisles of the L&F Jones depot at Westfield

better show. The day was well attended by customers and even a school outing. Lisa Weston, from Wells Blue School, attended with students studying professional cookery. Lisa said: “Our students gain a professional practical cookery diploma at levels 1 & 2 and the BTEC extended national diploma at level 3. This gives our students a real holistic approach to the catering industry not only through practicals but also learning vital managerial skills. Our students are

currently working on their first unit of introduction to the hospitality industry. This is an experience that cannot be replicated in a classroom. Experiences have to be seen, heard, smelt, touched and tasted: a fantastic day!” Dave Jones added: “The event was a great success; both suppliers and customers enjoyed the day. Thank you to everyone who attended and to our suppliers for the support you gave this year to make the Tradeshow the success it was.”


(Photograph courtesy of Victoria Ashman Photography)

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Gurney Slade

Bookings now being taken for Christmas meals (Dec 1st-24th) Great value food available every day 12-9pm (inc. our two meals for £10 offer). Pub classics, grills, vegetarian op+ons and more. Children’s menu. FUNCTION ROOM/SKITTLE ALLEY AVAILABLE FOR HIRE EN SUITE LETTING ROOMS AVAILABLE WELL5BEHAVED PETS WELCOME IN THE BAR




Fit for a king – or a prince!

GREAT value for money is the watchword for the team behind the busy George Inn at Gurney Slade. In the three months since taking over, landlord Jamie Gowdy and his partner Liz McDonnell have transformed the pub into a welcoming, friendly inn offering good food and drink A warm welcome: Liz and every day of the week. Jamie with John (left) and Theresa (right) The couple, who moved from the Midlands to take over at The George, have been joined by their friend John Arlow as manager, with Theresa Phelps running the kitchen. The bar area now boasts a welcoming wood burning stove and the skittle alley – which is also available as a function room – has had new heating and lighting installed. The family-friendly (and dog-friendly) pub’s main menu is available every day from midday until 9pm but one of the highlights must be their Sunday lunches. The pub serves a variety of meats (from Griffiths Butchers in Wells) and seasonal vegetables and the lunches come in three sizes: the Baby Prince George, the George and the King George: all very apt given the recent royal christening! Liz and Jamie believe that a pub should be at the heart of the community and are busy organising a series of events, from bingo to live music: the locally-based Harlem Rhythm Cats will be playing live in the pub on Friday, December 6th.

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Welcome to the Kings Arms Litton The perfect venue for a family Christmas party or an intimate gathering of friends CHRISTMAS PARTY MENU

Nestled in the Chew Valley and firmly placed at the foot of the Mendip Hills is one of England’s finest country pubs. Full of local history and charm, this country retreat is wrapped in the warmth of 591 years of character. This beautiful place has built an enviable reputation, and today a polite welcome awaits you from Luis and Findlay. Historically since its opening circa 1420 the polished flagstone floors and cool cellars have created the perfect condition for an evening of atmospheric dining with friends and family. Dine in the Pub, Restaurant or the Gardens or even down by the river. We offer lunch and dinner as well as various afternoon tea selections. We also cater for special dietary requirements. Our food is sourced locally and wherever possible organic and is cooked by some of the country’s finest Chef’s with head Chef Joao Duarte leading the team with inspired ideas and simply superb creations – the tastes are just delicious! The Kings Arms Litton is simply an enchanting spectacle of what we all assume England’s finest pub locations should look like and filled with a curious delight to be found by all that visit.

£25 per person for 3 courses £20 per person for 2 courses **Ser ved in our bmf style – choose 3 different starters/ 3 different main courses / 2 different puddings for your party/ minimum 6 people per party/ booking for party menu is essential** Glass of mulled wine on arrival ~ THE STARTERS Cup Of Celeriac & Chestnut Soup (V) Cup Of Mushroom Soup (V) House Chicken Liver Pate, Grilled Bread & Gherkins Garden Apple & Pear Salad, Walnuts & Stilton (V) Smoked Scottish Salmon, Cucumber & Crème Fraiche Slow Roast Beetroots, Feta Cheese & Clementine Salad (V) Roast Wiltshire Quail, Pomegranate, Raddichio & Aged Balsamic ~ THE MAIN COURSES Roast Turkey Stuffed With Chestnuts & Mushrooms, Herb Potatoes Supreme Of Duck Breast, Orange & Port Sauce, Dauphinoise Potatoes Herb Roast Chicken & Mashed Potat oes with a Sage & Lemon Sauce Slow Roast Shoulder Of Pork, Apple Sauce & Herb Roast Potatoes Fillet Of Sea Bass served on Crushed New Potaotes & Capers Wild Mushroom Tagliatelle, Sun Dried Tomatoes & Parmesan (V) Kings Arms Nut Roast (V) ~ THE DESSERTS Traditional Christmas Pudding & Bran dy Custard Sauce Crepe D’banana With A Caramel Sauc e Litton Mess & Fresh Fruits Somerset Apple Crumble & Vanilla Custa rd Sauce The House Cheese Platter Selection & Biscuits (Extra £3 Per Person) Litton Surprise, A Bit Of Everything!!! (Extra £3 Per Person)

** BMF (bring me food), means that the food is brought to you in large serving platters enabling you to have all your choosen dishes in this banquet style service)

The Kings Arms Litton, Somerset BS3 4PW. Tel: 01761 241301 or 01761 348097 • email: MENDIP TIMES • NOVEMBER 2013 • PAGE 37

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Carnival attracts the crowds

AN estimated 20,000 people lined the streets of Frome for the town’s annual carnival celebrations which featured a whole day of events. Music and street theatre began the proceedings in the town centre, followed by the children’s carnival in the afternoon before the main evening procession.

Hot Rock Carnival Club, from Gillingham in Dorset, took the overall prize with their entry Who You Gonna Call?


Part of Magnum CC’s Butterfly Ball cart

Dee Gee’s club from Shaftesbury won the Town Crier Cup for best costume in the masqueraders classes with their entry Clean Sweep Evie and Rory Holden, aged two and five, from Frome Determined collectors: youngsters from Frome Rugby Club


Kipling Junior CC’s entry What A Night

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Marking your emails

SOMETIMES we receive emails with a request for information, but need to find the answer and reply to the email another time, but if you simply close it, you might find it difficult to find it when you get back. So there are a few options. Most providers put several columns in their emails – one, for example, will contain a paperclip to emails with attachments. Some have a little yellow label to mark your email as important. Some have star markings; some have flags. But the principle is the same for all of them – if the email is still open you can do it from within the email on most systems. If you have closed the email, you will need to select it – click in the box on the left (or single-click it for some providers) then click on the relevant button – Gmail has stars; as in the first example. Other providers have red flags. The

flag remains red as a reminder to do something with it, so when you have completed the task, you can simply click on the flag again, and it will be greyed out once more. There is another alternative which I often use – I mark emails that need dealing with as unread. In Gmail you select the email, then click on the more button and click mark as unread in the dropdown menu that appears. If you have organised Gmail to show unread messages at the top of the page, it will be very visible as needing attention. On other systems – right click the email and click mark as unread.  Whilst on the subject of Gmail – they have a new look to their setup – in the top right of your screen should be an Apps (buzz word of the moment) button – click on that for some App(lications) you can click on – +You is a file sharing site; Google is a search engine (of course); YouTube is a site full of videos – some instructional videos are very helpful – try it next time you need to know how to change a washer, for example; Maps; Play – download music, videos etc; News; Gmail; Drive – online spreadsheets you can share with others; and Calendar. Submitted by IT for the Terrified : The Old Cowshed, Station Road, Cheddar BS27 3AG 01934 741751 This article is for guidance only, and the opinion of the writer. For more in depth information, please contact us. We offer individual training, either one-off sessions or a series, at a pace to suit you; a session lasts 2 hours and costs £10. We can cover a range of subjects from absolute basics to advanced use on Windows XP/Vista/Windows7/Windows8; photo management; iPad; Tablet computers; smartphones; basic web design; Word processing; Spreadsheets; PowerPoint; Kindle; Kobo; eReaders; downloading books or library books; shopping; etc, etc. See our website or contact us for further details. We will be closed for the duration of the school half term – 28th October to 6th November inclusive.



The Mendip Mindbender

ACROSS 1/21 Find Mum a semirural fete for a change – it’d be a great day out (5,3,3,6) 6 Quite elegant creature . . . if slippery (3) 8 This butler guy became most unpleasant (4,5) 10 Cutting edge raole for James? (5) 11 Fresh king is sorting out some fishy birds (11) 12 Dogs bark at colour of horse (3) 13 Send Bob an e-mail about monstrous apparition (10) 16 Picked up sound of stampeding animals? (4) 19 We returned to the road where we obtained lottery ticket (4) 20 Need interval to find means of producing fresh air (10) 22 Batsman’s objective for 18? (3) 23 Sailing ship . . . with crew in tents? (5,6) 26 Make home a really historic place (5) 27 I avoid CID when I’m looking for pleasant sounds (4,5) 28 What we need to know about when a Miss became a Mrs (3) 29 Small meters adjusted for Little Jack Horner’s waterway (5,6)

DOWN 1 Sporting body with topless wreck to come ashore near Frome (9) 2 Any number follow the French woman for her name (5) 3 Decide to go blonde without bias (2,2,4) 4 She had electricity installed (5) 5 Non-speaker loses the point with over-large article and decorative plant (6) 6 David from The Office follows direction in Sedgemoor (4,5) 7 Go from ungodly to find island (5) 9 Get the better of . . . coach to London? (7) 14 Watery welcome . . . for surfers? (5,4) 15 Learn to . . . procrastinate? (5,2) 17 Sudden movement towards boiling water upsets pub side (5,4) 18 Straightforward wound – there’s no doubt (5,3) 21 See 1 Across 22 Past 22ac. holds decoration for Latin speaker (5) 24 Whatever we do we like to join (5) 25 Disgusting to have nothing to make a dress with (5)

Answers on Page 121

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You can use your dividend card in any of the stores listed here. See in-store for details.

Head Office: Co-operative House, 3 Wells Hill, Radstock BA3 3RQ • Tel 01761 431555 •

1 Elm Tree Avenue, Westfield, Radstock BA3 3BX

Wells Road, Radstock BA3 3RQ

32 Fosseway, Westfield, Midsomer Norton, BA3 4AX

Charlton Crossroads, Whitstone Road, Shepton Mallet BA4 5PT

Naish’s Cross, Chilcompton BA3 4JN

32-34 High Street, Glastonbury BA6 9DX

Harford Square, Chew Magna BS40 8RA

Highbury Street, Coleford BA3 5NJ

7–9 Westway Shopping Centre, Frome BA11 1BS

84-86 West End, Street BA16 0LP

North Road, Timsbury, Bath BA2 0JH

Bath Road, Peasedown St John, Bath BA2 8DT

G A wide selection of fresh produce G Award winning wines, beers and spirits. G Neal’s Yard Wholefoods (selected stores) G General Grocery G A selection of Fairtrade & Organic products G Newspapers and magazines G A range of chilled and frozen produce

G “Food to go” G Costa Coffee Express (selected stores) G Fresh meat (butchery counter at Radstock, Street and Frome) G Lottery & paypoint G Post Offices at Radstock, Chilcompton & Frome

G Radstock Super Store has extensive non-food ranges including electrical, ladies and menswear, Fashions, Lingerie, Children’s wear, Footwear, Textiles, soft furnishings, coffee shop, dry cleaning service and travel agency as well as a well-stocked Food Hall.

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Perfect for breakfast, lunches and teas Locally sourced and home-cooked Delicious coffee, tea and cakes Bistro evenings coming soon! Monday – Friday 8.30am-5.30pm Saturday – 8.45am-3pm Sunday – closed Antique ice-cream bicycle available for hire

The Pantry, 32a, Woodborough Road, Winscombe, BS25 1AG Tel 01934 707937 • email

We have an extensive menu and wine list with freshly-prepared daily specials and seasonal favourites Party menus available for all special occasions Hotel accommodation with first class rooms available Skittle alley to hire with a choice of buffet menus. Excellent disabled access and facilities • Fine wines, real ales and cider Ample car parking. All major credit cards accepted Book on your meal on 01934 844167 or email us


Christmas shopping in Winscombe



PUT Tuesday December 3rd in your diary – Winscombe’s Christmas Shopping Night promises to be the biggest ever, with virtually every trader in the village preparing to stay open late. There’ll be choirs from Winscombe, Sandford and Sidcot schools, as well as Churches Together, music, a children’s carousel, flower demonstrations, mulled wine, hot chestnuts and a whole range of other activities – Ian Studley are clearing their forecourt to make space. It’s perhaps a sign of a new confidence in the village, where a number of thriving new businesses have opened in the last year – why not pop in to The Wine Shop to celebrate with a glass of chocolate wine. Father Christmas will have his grotto at the Bridal Boutique and the local fire brigade and Pulse Radio will also be joining in the festivities.

Happy first birthday

THE Pantry Café/Bistro on the site of the former Cottage Tea Rooms on Woodborough Road, in Winscombe, will have been trading for a year from December 1st – and if you haven’t already been in then more fool you! Owner Quinn McCarthy admits trading conditions remain challenging, but business on the whole has been very good, thanks in part to some consistent summer weather, but also to their growing reputation for their locally sourced and home-made food and cakes. Quinn said: “We are always looking at new ideas and promotions to encourage a wider demographic, whilst maintaining our regular client base.” The Pantry has recently got planning permission to start its Bistro evening service on a Thursday and Friday evening, something owner Quinn envisaged from the start: “The evenings will take place monthly to start with and will be themed, we are also partnering with the Wine Tasting Shop around the corner to offer a BYO facility.”

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Friendly professional eye care since 1986

ORRISS and Low opened in Winscombe in 1986, 27 years ago, and from small beginnings has expanded rapidly, constantly improving equipment and skills. The husband and wife team now employ 10 staff and offer specialist contact lens fittings, vision training and treatment for certain eye conditions, a range of imaging techniques and 21st century eye care. Eyecare Membership offers easy budgeting, with up to 40% discount on spectacles, and the very best in eye care for a small monthly payment. Over 500 of their patients are Eyecare members. Their spectacle frames include new special ranges Erin’s World for Downs Syndome fittings and Tots Specs for babies and toddlers. They also have uniquely colour-corrective polarising Maui Jim Sunglasses for snow, water, sand – but also low winter sun on the roads.


Orriss and Low Optometrists Corner House Winscombe BS25 1AQ 01934 843713

Meet Father Christmas

THE Country House Gift Company in Winscombe is planning a number of special events in the run-up to Christmas. They‘ve got a special post box set up to send your Christmas wish list to Father Christmas – he’ll be collecting these when he’s visiting the store every Saturday between 1pm and 4pm. Each Saturday Father Christmas will be taking time out from his busy schedule to meet boys and girls, and you can tell him what you want for Christmas. They’re also planning a chocolate tasting evening and private shopping experiences where you can relax and shop in its calm atmosphere. There’ll be plenty of late shopping evenings – just check in-store for information.

Winscombe Fish Bar

Traditional high quality food from friendly and reliable staff

Mon Tues Weds 11.30–2pm and 5–10pm Thurs 11.30–2pm and 5–10.30pm Fri Sat 11.30–2.30pm and 5–10.30pm

PETER EVERETT Registered Osteopath 12 Woodborough Road Winscombe BS25 1AA

T: 01934 844764

Gluten and wheat-free night the last Sunday of every month

1, Sandford Road, Winscombe

01934 843666

Also at Mendip Suite, Wrington Vale Medical Practice, Pudding Pie Lane, Langford BS50 5EL MENDIP TIMES • NOVEMBER 2013 • PAGE 43

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Wishing you a Merry Christmas – from Claire and Emma

tel: 01934 843800 • web: 36A Woodborough Road, Winscombe, BS25 1AG

Come and see Santa

THE Bridal Boutique and Cleopatra’s Wardrobe will become a grotto for Winscombe’s Christmas Shopping Night on Tuesday December 3rd – as well as being a great source of Christmas gifts. That’s where you will find Santa, the elves and a shoemaker, plus ice cream and all kinds of Christmas goodies. Cleopatra’s Wardrobe will be showing off its new Joules range of clothing as well as festive nightshirts, handbags, jewellery, scarves and other gifts. Claire Cooke, who owns the businesses, said: “It went down so well last year, it was really lovely.”

The place to find fine wines for Christmas

THE Wine Shop, in Winscombe, has announced the first annual Somerset Wine Fair, which will take place at Sidcot Arts Centre on Friday November 22nd, 6pm-9pm. The fair will showcase a selection of wines, spirits and beers from around the world, including those produced in Somerset, all of which will be available to order at the event or from the shop itself, just in time for Christmas. The Sidcot Arts Centre is in a beautiful setting with light and space, enabling you to wonder around the various tasting benches exploring the wonderful wines, spirits and beers on offer at your own leisure. Kelli Coxhead, from The Wine Shop said: “We are very excited to be able to host the Somerset Wine Fair; it will be a suburb opportunity to find the perfect wine for the festive period. We have over 20 growers, producers and distributors lined up to showcase some fabulous wines and all this just in time for Christmas.” Tickets for the event, which are £10, are available from The Wine Shop of Winscombe, and are part refundable against your purchases on the night. You will be refunded 50% of your ticket price, when you purchase a 12 bottle case of wine. Pop in to collect your tickets from The Wine Shop, 21 Woodborough Road, Winscombe, BS25 1AB or telephone to book on 01934 708312. Details:


Tel: Winscombe 01934 842210 PAGE 44 • MENDIP TIMES • NOVEMBER 2013

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NOW the clocks have changed and the nights are longer its time to replace those fresh white wines with deep rich reds for sitting by the fire. A perfect candidate would be our November wine of the month, the Cotes Saint Mont a traditional French red. Made from a blend including Tannet and packed full of blackcurrants, blackberries and spicy licorice notes. With silky tannins and a lingering finish it matches perfectly with roast meat dishes. Wine can often be quite daunting when you are faced with row upon row of bottles with unpronounceable names and not knowing if its the grape or region! We want to make buying wine fun and informative, so whether your after a wine to relax at the end of a long day or a gift to impress, The Wine Shop has it covered and can help you make the right choice at the right price. Our monthly bakers dozen case goes down at treat at £90 including free delivery. We select six white and six red wines for you to enjoy and the thirteenth bottle is free and one chosen by you. It’s both fun and important to taste, so every Saturday we open a bottle or two on the tasting bench for you to sample. Please pop in and see what we have open. We look forward to seeing you soon . . .


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Local base – global reputation

The Jacaranda Team would like to invite you to join us for nibbles and complementary Hair Consulta ons on Tuesday December 3rd from 5-8pm. We look forward to seeing you all!

Tel: 01934 842004

Colin Coates & Partners Tax advisors For personal tax, business tax and accountancy advice Free initial consultation 01934 844133 • Webs House, Woodborough Road, Winscombe BS25 1AD

ESTABLISHED in 1978, Colin Coates and Partners are taxation consultants and independent financial advisers, offering a full range of tax, accountancy, legal and financial services. They have built up particular expertise in dealing with family groupings, including family businesses and family trusts, the entertainment industry, the medical sector and, in particular, in academia, a niche area in which they have built up a specific and unique expertise. They not only have a global client base for this work, but also work internationally on foreign employment, overseas property and for clients with foreign spouses. As a result they specialise in advice regarding domicile and residence for taxation purposes.

Hair and beauty

AT Acutabove Hair salon and Beautyabove, their team are experienced, friendly and will strive to meet your individual needs providing the highest standard of creativity and service. Visit them to see their range of limited edition Aveda gifts, perfect for stocking fillers or secret Santa gifts or team them with gift vouchers for the perfect Aveda experience. They are open six days a week, late on Thursdays. Whether it’s a house or business transaction, child care case, divorce, dealing with a family death, a criminal matter or even a road traffic offence – we all need a lawyer sometime!

For no-nonsense, expert advice, call the local name in all matters legal and find out how we can help you, our Winscombe team are: Ruth Berry Anne Mehlig Roger Burdock Nicholas Boyd Vanessa Dawson

With offices in Winscombe, Worle and Weston-super-Mare, our combined experience offers sensitive expert handling for all your legal needs where and when you need it. Winscombe 10 Woodborough Road Winscombe North Somerset BS25 1AA 01934 842811 PAGE 46 • MENDIP TIMES • NOVEMBER 2013

Weston-superWorle Mare 115-121 High Street 50 Boulevard Worle Weston-super-Mare North Somerset North Somerset BS22 6HB BS23 1NF 01934 513963 01934 414161

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Say it with flowers


NO matter what the occasion, flowers always seem to make it brighter, and at The Florist Shop in Winscombe, Debbie Clements boasts a very diverse assortment of floral designs and gift items. Choose from their most popular items or describe your ideas to their floral designers and they’ll create a unique bouquet just for you.

Everything for the gardener

IN the heart of the beautiful Mendips is Banwell Garden Centre, where gardeners and tradesmen can get everything they need for their gardening and landscape needs. Recent improvements have been made to the shop, allowing for unique gifts and cards, garden furniture, and a huge selection of bird care products to be stocked. They also have their coffee shop which is open for all-day “Banwell’s big breakfasts”, home-cooked lunches, award-winning cakes, coffee and on Sundays their ever-popular Sunday lunch. It’s a great place to sit back and look at the views. Banwell Garden centre is fortunate enough to be able to offer customers a fully trained and experienced landscaping team, specialising in fencing, patio and turf installation, who offer free estimates.


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Art close to home

ARTIST Roger Jones has always taken inspiration from the area where he lives in Midsomer Norton. So last year he painted The Old Jubilee Lamp, recalling his teenage years, including himself and many of his friends in the picture. Many recall the golden age of steam, captured by Roger in Norton Hill Station 1959, showing the Pines Express passing through Midsomer Norton heading north towards Bath. His latest painting, Autumn Mist at Underhill Lane, shows woodland close to where he lives. After moving from his shop at Chew Valley Lake about six years ago Roger now exhibits and works from his purpose-built home gallery. Also many of his prints on canvas are on permanent display at Midsomer Norton Social Club. The club itself is newly revamped and will be holding a craft and art fair on Saturday, November 16th. Roger will be there to show a few of his original paintings.

Julie Kingcott The Studio Westward Court Wrington North Somerset Mob: 07515 834200

Julie Kingcott exhibition

WRINGTON artist, Julie Kingcott, is holding an exhibition of her popular dog portraits in The Plough, at Wrington, this month. She is particularly well-known for her animal portraiture, capturing the unique spirit and personality of family pets, domestic animals and wild creatures. Her interest in painting animals stems from a relative who bred dogs and was a Crufts’ judge. Some of the proceeds from the exhibition will go to the Guide Dog Association.

Paintings, Prints & Cards

By Midsomer Norton Artist Roger F. Jones All limited edition prints are faithfully reproduced (any size!), finest quality Somerset paper or ‘canvas!’ 16” x 12” print only prices start from ‘only’ £29.00 Over 100 images available (full framing service)

“The Old Jubilee Lamp”

“Norton Hill Station, 1959”


“Autumn Mist @ Underhill Farm” (my latest oil painting) PAGE 48 • MENDIP TIMES • NOVEMBER 2013

telephone: 01761 4111842 mobile: 07816 368790 email:

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Tamlyns plans huge costume sale

TAMLYNS of Bridgwater have been asked to sell a huge private collection of vintage and theatrical costume; originally intended for their next collectors sale, auctioneer Claire Rawle has decided that because of the sheer volume and assortment that it would form the

basis of a specialist sale. The collection includes both ladies and gents costume from the 1940s to the 1980s and everything from dresses, suits, coats, jackets, shirts, ties, scarves, hats, skirts will be included. There will also be some earlier costumes and textiles. The date was originally set for December, but with an overwhelming interest in the sale Tamlyns have decided to hold it in spring next year which will allow it to be bigger and better, with entries from other vendors very much welcome. The date for the sale is yet to be confirmed but will be widely advertised once it is.


New development officer

NORTH Somerset Arts has announced the appointment of its first development officer, Fiona Davies, with the aim of significantly increasing the role the arts play within the county. The organisation evolved from the popular bi-annual North Somerset Arts Week, which was first hosted across the county in 2003, led by Annie Taylor. In its 10 year existence North Somerset Arts

organisation has grown rapidly. The development officer’s position marks a new era for the organisation, which had previously been entirely volunteer led. Fiona, whose background includes working at the Royal West of England Academy, said: “By promoting and delivering a strong cultural offering inNorth Somerset I am confident that we will see a positive impact on the community.” Details:


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Bringing art back to Wells

AFTER a two-year absence A2 Gallery opened its doors again for the first time in Wells High Street to the delight of local and tourist art lovers alike. Local painters David Parfitt RI, and Martin Bentham RWA are showing There's hope on the horizon by David with A2 for the first Parfitt time. Both artists’ work is extremely collectible and they can often be seen painting around the Mendips. David said: “It’s great news to see A2 open again and I’m very much looking forward to showing my work in Wells once more.“ The new gallery also incorporates Square One - a space dedicated as a showcase for local artists’ work. Owner and artist Alan Stratford said: “I know how hard it can be to get work on public display when you are starting out as an artist, which is why we can now offer support to artists and crafts people who need space to exhibit.”

Home for Christmas


AFTER a successful year of being part of the Designs of Excellence Touring Collection, Erica Sharpe’s Fairtrade ‘Stella’ collection will be back on display in readiness for Wedmore by Lamplight on the evening of Wednesday December 11th. As in previous years the shop will open and visitors will be warmly welcomed to browse for Christmas. Erica is also offering beautiful commissioned gift certificates for those who would like to offer a one-off gift. She said: “Having a bespoke piece of jewellery made is an exciting and interactive process. After an initial consultation where style, practicality and meaning is discussed, I produce a series of sketches and designs to choose from.” As a qualified gemmologist and diamond grader Erica can supply and advise on gemstones to suit requirements. Once the design is agreed upon Erica handcrafts the unique commission, either from scratch or by re-designing old jewellery or re-using old gold and gemstones.

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Strong bidding at monthly sales


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DURING October Mendip Auction Rooms held their monthly sale of Antiques, Fine Art and Collectables which was immediately followed by a quarterly Sporting Sale with over 600 lots going under the hammer. Lots sold included a Victorian rosewood and Tunbridge Ware tea caddy inlaid with castle decoration, possibly Eridge Castle, and floral bands, with moulded glass sugar liner and two tea compartments with lids that sold for £410. Other notable items included a pair of early 20th century Japanese bronze vases of baluster form, decorated with bird and tree relief that sold for £750 and an Edwardian silver novelty pin cushion in the form of a goat by Allday and Lovekin,, Birmingham, 1908 that sold for £230. A good number of shotguns, firearms and other sporting items were entered into the Sporting Sale with interest in the room and online. A flintlock brass barrel blunderbuss, Boyd of Limerick, Ireland sold for £1,100 and an interesting pair of Kepple Bristol cricket candlestick holders, Richard and Ranjit Singh, sold above estimate for £70. The general sale of Victorian and later effects which is held monthly on a Tuesday afternoon continues to be popular with many buyers in attendance and the October sale was no exception. A good collection of items have entered into the sales in


November including a fine selection of jewellery and silver many of which will make wonderful Christmas gifts. The next sales at the Mendip Auction Rooms will be staged on November 16th at 10am which is a sale of Antiques, Fine Art and Collectables and on November 26th at 1pm which is a sale of Victorian and Later Effects.


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Made in Wrington

BILL Moore has something to celebrate – he’s been a successful professional potter with his own business for 20 years and will be celebrating this as part of the Made in Wrington Art Fest. Bill trained at Bristol U.W.E. which included a year’s apprenticeship in France. After graduating he started his own business with the help of The Prince’s Trust, exhibiting and selling his work at prestigious UK and international trade fairs. He set up his Clayability business six years ago at Barley Wood Walled Garden Art Studios in Wrington, where he teaches and exhibits his work. In Bill’s own words: “Clayability brings you entertainment and creativity, learning with expert advice and satisfying results.” He will be exhibiting as part of the Made in Wrington Christmas Art Fest and selling an array of his pottery spanning 20 years. Other Made in Wrington artists and guests will also be exhibiting and selling their work as part of the event. Made in Wrington is a non-profit making voluntary art group, formed in Wrington in March 2012, whose main purpose is to unite artists from the area, with the aim of raising the profile both of the group and members’ work.

Gallery selected for quality by the Crafts Council of Great Britain Open Wednesday – Friday 10am – 5pm, Saturday 10am – 2pm (or by appointment) Broad Street, Congresbury, Bristol, North Somerset BS49 5DG • Telephone 01934 833660 •


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New at Church House

Elton tops the bill

CHURCH House Designs in Congresbury is always finding original and exciting new work for the gallery, as well as restocking work by their favourite regular artists. At present they are focusing on a new-comer to the gallery, West Country photographer, John Waters. John has filmed in over 20 countries and has credits on more than 60 TV programmes, including many of Sir David Attenborough’s series for the BBC. He spends much of his time exploring and photographing the landscape of our area, particularly Glastonbury Tor and The Levels. The gallery will be promoting more paintings by Somerset artists and has a new section on its website for paintings and limited edition prints. It also has high quality ceramics, jewellery and other gifts.

CLEVEDON Salerooms’ Quarterly Specialist Sale includes a collection of more than 30 pieces of Elton ware crackle glaze art pottery amassed over decades by a private collector. The pottery was established in the late 19th century at Clevedon Court by Sir Edmund Elton. Much of this collection was purchased at Clevedon Salerooms over many years and although Sir Elton’s ware crops up frequently at Clevedon, short of a visit to Clevedon Court, it is rare to see such a collection in one place. Estimates range from £50 – £800 and collectors, local and worldwide can bid live on the internet for the Specialist Sale on November 28th. For more information contact the Auctioneers on 01934 830111.

Some gems from our

Specialist Jewellery Sale

Fine Art Auctioneers & Valuers

Quarterly Specialist Sale Of Antiques, Fine Art, Collectors’ Items, Jewellery & Silver



Thursday 28th November at 10.30 Viewing: Tues 26th Nov 2pm – 5.30pm Wed 27th Nov 10pm – 7.30pm Catalogue on-line from 16th Nov

Tel: 01934 830111 or 0117 325 6789 The Auction Centre, Kenn Road, Kenn, Clevedon, Bristol BS21 6TT




Jewellery, Watch & Silver

Free Valuation Day Held at the Salerooms – ample free parking

Tuesday 5th November – 9.30am – 5pm Next Specialist Sale Thursday 28th November MENDIP TIMES • NOVEMBER 2013 • PAGE 53

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Wrington Apple Day


HUNDREDS of people turned up to press apples with the Forgotten Fruit project at The Plough in Wrington. The project, now in its second year, involves volunteers from around the village collecting “forgotten” apples and then pressing them to make their own juice and cider. Organiser, Neil Phillips, said: “It was a really successful day, with a great turnout, helped by the beautiful weather. It was extra special to have professional expertise from Thatchers cidermaker Paul Dockerty, who gave our fresh apple juice the thumbs up!”

Photography copyright of Bob Bowen 2013

Cake stall Queens at Wrington Apple Day. From left are Sonya Devi-Clarke, Melanie Greenwood and Julie Kingcott

Music provided by Tom Henry and friends got the young visitors dancing at Wrington Apple Day held at the Plough.

Paul Dockerty and some of the apple collectors

Musicians entertaining the crowd PAGE 54 • MENDIP TIMES • NOVEMBER 2013

A young visitor to Wrington's Apple Day watches freshly pressed being bottled.

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Tel: 0800 097 8611 | e-mail:


Mendip Times reduces travel costs

100,000 potential customers within a short distance of your business

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Thatchers expansion

Great Products • Great Prices Great Service • Food to go • Pastries • Coffee and Freshly Made Sandwiches • Health Lottery • PayPoint • Local Produce

THIS summer’s heatwave has contributed to Thatchers recording a £42 million turnover this year. The company continues to reinvest back into the business, with a new £3 million packaging plant currently under construction.

To Bristol Sandford Stores

To Weston

Churchill crossroads

To Bath

To Taunton

Sandford Stores 39-41, Greenhill Rd, Sandford, Winscombe, BS25 5QB. Telephone: 01934 852521 Email:



Duvets & Bedspreads washed & dried Sheets and Duvet covers washed and pressed Professional efficient service Collection & delivery service in the Chew Valley

Tel 01761 451787

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Photo by Ignyte Limited, Radstock.

New era for flower shop


Cynthia and Lynnsey cut the ribbon to open the new business

A SHOP in Wells which has been a florist’s for almost 40 years has a new owner – and it is someone who will be very familiar to anyone who visits the city’s twice-weekly markets! Lynnsey Kelly, who has run her stall by the fountain for the past 11 years, has taken over the shop in Priest Row in Wells. But Lynnsey, a self-taught florist with 19 years’ experience, has no plans to give up the market side of the business. The shop was first opened by Cynthia Chislett, who returned as guest of honour to help Lynnsey cut the ribbon at a party to celebrate the new venture. Lynnsey studied to be a jeweller and was privileged to be asked to make the wreath that was placed on the coffin of, perhaps, Well’s most famous resident, Harry Patch, the last fighting Tommy from the First World War. Lynnsey, who now lives in Glastonbury, learned her floristry skills in Bath but was inspired by regular visits to Wells Cathedral to set up business in the city. She said: “I found out that the market was looking for a florist and thought it would be a good place to come to. “What I love most are my regular customers and I’ve already received some lovely comments about the shop. I have to say I fell in love with the building.”

Mendip Times reduces travel costs

100,000 potential customers within a short distance of your business


M: 07970 585019 Shop: 01749 675 440 Web: Email:

COMPTON MARTIN MODEL RAILWAY EXHIBITION @ BIG RICH’S Sunday 3rd November, 9am–4pm Come and join us to see a variety of superb model railways (including Signals Models Trade Stand)

2 Priest Row, Wells, Somerset BA5 2PY MENDIP TIMES • NOVEMBER 2013 • PAGE 57

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Winning team

RED Berry Recruitment hosted a quiz night for Somerset Community Foundation at the Wessex Hotel, in Street, raising over £300. Mary Hancock, deputy chief executive at SCF said: “We’re extremely grateful to Helen and the team at Red Berry recruitment. The quiz was a creative and entertaining way to raise the foundation’s profile.” Those taking part included Mary Hancock of SCF, the winning team The Scrambled Eggheads, Emma Haskins, PA to Red Berry MD Helen Lacey.

Designer sale weekend at Kilver Court


TO celebrate the opening of The Arcade – a brand new concept store – Kilver Court Designer Village in Shepton Mallet is hosting a big sale weekend. The Arcade is the new home for more favourite brands: Orla Kiely, MiH Jeans, Quba & Co. & John Partridge. The weekend – Saturday, November 16th and Sunday, November 17th – will see amazing discounts and promotions across all stores including Jack Wills, Toast, LK Bennett and Jane Clayton, as well as guest designer brands stopping by. Kilver Court Designer Village is excited to welcome London’s Browns Labels for Less pop up shop, which will open on the sale weekend for eight days only. For the first time ever Browns, the iconic temple of fashion, will venture out of London bringing luxury labels to Somerset. Make the most of the exclusive opportunity to choose from an edited selection of fantastic designer wear at discounted prices. There will be past season pieces from Stella McCartney, Alaia, Marc Jacobs Balenciaga, Lanvin, Chloe and many more. With up to 80% off, don’t miss the opportunity to start Christmas shopping or update the winter wardrobe. For more information, visit the Kilver Court website:

• Jackets • Fleeces • Walking Boots • Bags • Hats & Gloves • Travel Clothing

Broad Street • Congresbury (opposite Ship & Castle)

01934 877333 PAGE 58 • MENDIP TIMES • NOVEMBER 2013

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Giant orchid is a winner

WHAT is probably the biggest orchid in Britain has been grown by students at Writhlington School. It takes six teenagers to lift the monster – but their efforts were rewarded when it was named Best in Show at the Autumn Orchid Festival hosted by the school. The festival, the largest autumn orchid event in the South West, featured orchids from across the region, but none larger than a plant of the Coelogyne fimbriata. Aaron Rabitts, 13, from Peasedown St. John, who has been looking after the plant for the last two years, said: “This orchid is a real monster. The records show that we have had it at Writhlington since 1992 but in the past two years it has trebled in size and is probably now the biggest orchid anywhere in the This example of a Phal Golden Nugget was UK.” named best in class at the show


Prize-winners: Writhlington students with their award

Visitors enjoy the sights at the Autumn Orchid Festival

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THE autumn series of BBC Radio 4’s The Living World began on Sunday, October 27th and the first story of our series was of an By CHRIS introduced species of SPERRING spider that now MBE successfully lives alongside many of us. Segestria florentina is the wonderfulsounding scientific name for this species of spider, but the English name is the tube web spider, or some people call it the cellar spider. There are three species of Segestria spider in the UK but the tube web spider is the very impressive newcomer. This spider originates from the Mediterranean area and is thought to have been accidently introduced to the UK around 1845 in the many cargo ships importing fruit at the time. Though they have been in the UK for well over 150 years, their spread has been slow and their strongholds are still around port areas like Exeter and Bristol. Milder winters over the past couple of decades have probably helped them spread further though and they can now be found further away from ports, although still confined mainly to southern England. Segestria florentina is easy to recognise, it is in fact unmistakable. Females are 22mm long and males around 15mm. Although young tube web spiders can have some brown markings on the abdomen, all the adults appear black with hairy legs, and display a pair of massive fangs which reflect a spectacular iridescent green colour when light is shone on them. As its name suggests, this species constructs elaborate tunnel webs inside holes in walls, houses or other buildings. They prefer south-facing buildings and radiating away from the tunnel entrance are a series of long strands of web silk which the spider uses as a trip wire. These spiders have their six front legs facing forwards, so that they can lie in wait deep inside their tube web with front legs all touching the trip wires. The remaining two legs are held behind the spider against the back of the

hole, so that when an unsuspecting insect walks over the trip wire the spider uses its two back legs to propel itself forwards at lightning speed, grabs its prey and injects it with venom using its enormous fangs and drags its victim back inside the hole. They are mostly nocturnal, feeding on moths, woodlice and many other species that land or walk around walls at night. However, they will hunt during the day as well and are more than capable of dealing with wasps and bees; however these are treated with caution and carried into the tunnel head first so there is no chance of the spider coming into contact with the stinging end. There have been lots of stories recently of people being bitten by false widow spiders, which can inflict a nasty bite but, despite their impressive fangs, the tube web spider’s bite is no worse than a bee sting and, though painful for a few hours, leaves no permanent damage. They rarely come inside buildings as they prefer to stay outside where their

Photography by Chris Sperring

Segestria florentina . . . or Boris as she’s called!


prey is, so you would have to be very unlucky to be bitten, and remember that all spiders are beneficial to humans, as they help control pests. I always find presenting programmes like the Living World very inspiring and, after we had recorded the tube web spider story in Exeter, I couldn’t wait to get home and check my own walls for signs of this magnificent Spider. I only found two on the walls of the house; one was clearly a juvenile, but the other was the biggest I had seen. I nicknamed it Boris, although by the size I’m sure ‘he’ is actually a ‘she’. I am now looking for them everywhere I go. I checked my brother’s house (who lives a few miles closer to the Severn Estuary than I do) and easily found more than 20 tube web spiders in his walls. So here’s a challenge for you – look on the outside of your house and see if you can find any Boris look-a-likes. If you do then let the British Spider Recording scheme know via

If you miss any of the autumn series of BBC Radio 4’s The Living World (or you don’t fancy getting up at 6.30am on a Sunday morning) then you can listen again on this website:

Chris Sperring is Conservation Officer for the Hawk and Owl Trust Contact him on 01275 849287 or via


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Lydeard Hill walk on the Quantocks

THE Quantocks are not far away from Mendip and deserve a visit especially at this time of year to enjoy the wonderful colours of heather, gorse, bracken and bilberries that clothe the higher slopes. This classic and not too difficult circle takes you across a prehistoric ceremonial landscape with burial mounds, and gently up Lydeard Hill, where wild ponies graze, and then just as gently to Will’s Neck, the highest point on the hills. This is followed by dropping down Triscombe Combe to a glorious thatched pub. Follow the Quantock Greenway below the south side of the hill to West Bagborough village and the Sun Inn. Then take your time on a steady 20-30 minute climb (O.6 miles) up to the edge of Lydeard Hill and on the flat back along the edge. If you are lucky, this should be a sunny walk. Dogs can enjoy the circle too.

With Sue Gearing PAGE 62 • MENDIP TIMES • NOVEMBER 2013

Throughout the walk you may hear the toot of a train on the West Somerset railway below.

PARK: In the free car NT car park for Lydeard Hill approached from Bishops Lydeard and Cothelstone or from Bridgwater and Enmore. The lane ends in the car park.

START: Go through the gate onto the hill. Go ahead on the main track for a yard or two and then fork up right by a post and wooden fire beater post. A few yards further on bear up right on a grassy track which gradually goes across to the middle of the hill and up. When the track forks, keep to the left, so you continue to climb gently. After about six minutes, you should be enjoying great views on either side – across Somerset and on the right over the Severn Estuary to Wales with Hinkley Point very prominent. Continue along the ridge on the main path which levels out soon. Ahead of you is the sweep of the hills. Another track joins from the left, but just maintain direction. Start to drop down.

1. GATE Reach the end of the hill and a gate under trees. Go through and continue ahead on the main track (Macmillan Way West) following a line of beeches on a bank – the remains of an earlier beech hedge – which is a very typical Quantock sight. There are good views right over Middle Hill. At a marker post go straight on up through a band of trees and into the open and stride out, climbing gently, between heather and gorse. The track is quite wide and stony.

Ignore other tracks. Aim for the trig point up ahead at 384 metres. Over right across the Severn Estuary you should get a good view of Flat Holm Island.

2. WILLS NECK Reach the trig point at Wills Neck and stop to enjoy the views. In the 7th century Wills Neck was one of the last parts of Somerset to hold out against the invading Saxon King Ina. Carry on, going to the right of the trig, and soon start to descend and bear over to the right, still on the main track. You get good views ahead over to Minehead. The track divides – stay to the right, which is the main track and it takes you on down, past a wooden marker post, and to a gate. 3. TRISCOMBE STONE Go through, leaving Aisholt Common land, and cross a track which comes up from Triscombe to the car park. On the other side of the track in the car parking area ahead (not the car park on the right) is the ancient Triscombe Stone, at the side of the broad sunken track – it’s only 2.5 ft high and inconspicuous so you may well miss it! Probably dating from the Bronze Age, it marks a meeting place on the old drove along the Quantock hills between Watchet and Lyme Regis. One superstition about the stone is that if you sit on it, you will be granted a wish – but perhaps best not to try it or the stone could get even smaller! Just behind the stone go to the side of a large wooden barrier and on to open land. There is a great south facing picnic bench, with a wooden log as a makeshift table,

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and a good view. Sadly, the seat is in memory of a baby girl, Alice Reuben who died just a few weeks old. Take the path diagonally across the open land and then bear to the right a little more joining another mown track. See over left the former Triscombe Quarry, closed in 1999, cut into the hill.

4. MARROW HILL Carry on to the far side to a stile and NT sign for Great and Marrow Hills. Cross and continue on, slightly left, across Marrow Hill, dropping down and coming to Triscombe Combe. Don’t go through the line of trees but turn left down the combe. Eventually come through a gate and then on down past a cottage to a small lane and down left to Triscombe. 5. TRISCOMBE Ahead is the 16th century thatched Someret inn, the Blue Ball, tucked away under the southern edge of the Quantocks. Turn left, and then almost immediately, turn up right to go above the inn, now on the Quantock Greenway (but possibly not clearly marked at this point). Follow this lane as it climbs for about 0.25 miles. It levels. Pass a wood of sessile oaks on the left – another signature of Quantock.

OS Explorer 140, Quantock Hills& Bridgwater, grid ref: 180 338 5.8 miles, about 3 hours walking.

Ignore a drive to a house on the left and continue on the lane until a track forks up left (still the Greenway). Continue to a junction of tracks. Take the lower track straight on and this soon bends down right and brings you to a lane and beautifully restored Rock Farm. 6. ROCK FARM Just past the farm, turn left on the Greenway through a gate and go below the garden wall. At the fence corner continue on as before. Maintain direction through fields until you go through a gate by a barn. There is one rather awkward large gate on the way. Go to the left of the barn and along the top of the field. A Bristol Gate in the top corner leads onto a grassy track. This

takes you past three bench seats, set in front of the walled garden of Bagborough House.

7. CHURCH Reach the church of St Pancras in West Bagborough. Go into the churchyard and to the church door. Here you get a good view of the fine manor house of the village, Bagborough House, dating back to 1730. There is a beautiful Bagborough Community Quilt hanging inside the church. Leave the churchyard down a path onto a lane on the edge of the village. Turn left, passing the war memorial plaque and the village pound right, and come to the very attractive pub, the Rising Sun Inn. 8. RISING SUN Take the track just before the pub and go up the side. This is the start of about a 2030 minute steady climb back on to Lydeard Hill. There is one short section that may prove a little wet after rain. Reach the gate you were at earlier in the walk and turn right through it. Then, either go back over the hill, or stay on the lower, flat track along the side which leads directly back to the car park. Blue Ball Inn, Triscombe, 01984 618242, (closed Monday lunch). The Rising Sun, West Bagborough, 01823 432575.


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West Countryman’s Diary

THE days have shortened and the temperature drops towards the close of the day. At the end of the month our clocks went back and winter now begins. Although it all sounds doom and gloom, I hope that there will still be some fine weather still to come. Every day of sunshine at this time of With LES the year is one to be treasured. DAVIES MBE In one of the spells of bright weather, I’ve managed to get in a day’s scrub clearance on the Somerset Wildlife Trust’s Black Rock Nature Reserve. This was some slope work with my new machine that gave me the ideal opportunity to “bond” with the new equipment. You may remember me commenting about the expensive noises that came from the gear box of my other alpine tractor whilst working on a slope. This is being repaired at the moment, but I have decided to invest in something a little more modern. In doing so I have to really settle into the new kit and gain the confidence in its ability to climb and cross slopes (for which it was designed). I can happily report that I am now confident it can do both and my backside is really starting to settle down in the tractor seat! It was a wonderful Mendip ploughing match this year at Green Ore, where the sun shone and lots of people turned out for a sunny day’s agricultural entertainment. Close on 90 ploughs were entered on to the field that day, including two horse teams who not only made a wonderful spectacle, but also proved they were capable of producing some top quality work at the rate of an acre a day. At the other end of the scale were the multi-furrow reversible ploughs pulled by tractors that measured their horse power in the hundreds. It is still nice to smell the Tractor Vaporising Oil (TVO) and hear the quieter engine notes from the vintage section. These machines were at the cutting edge of agriculture in their day and, together with those enthusiasts who lovingly care for them, they are still capable of a day’s work on the land. Such an event takes a lot of organising and a huge amount of preparation time, all of which is given freely by those members of the Mendip Ploughing Society Committee, which I am pleased to be a member of. It never fails to amaze me the way in which it all just seems to happen with no fuss or shouting. The real heroes of the day are the ladies in the catering tent who will make acres of sandwiches, pour gallons of tea as well as providing lunch for every judge and steward on the field. Every competitor has their lunch delivered to them at the headland and this is no mean logistical undertaking. It gladdens my heart to see that more schools are visiting the match every year. This year I spoke to four schools, with a total of 60 children, all of whom were having a wonderful day out and learning about farming and food at the same time. Like many of you, as a young boy growing up in the countryside my view on life was shaped by those old men who told me all about it. Well, I’m the old man now, and it’s my job to tell the youngsters of today, and there is so much to tell! Most of our units of measurement were land based, but have now slipped into obscurity with the age of decimalisation. For racing fans the “furlong” was “the furrow long” (220 yards), a length of


ground that the medieval plough teams of oxen would work within the open field system. In order to steer these docile giants a boy was employed. He did not lead the oxen, but prodded them in the ribs with a pole measuring five and a half yards in length, that’s around five metres, thus giving us the old measurement of “rod, pole or perch”. These measurements can still be seen today in the ridge and furrow, so clearly visible in many of the fields, that measure 11 yards across, (10 metres approx). Having said in my last article that there can’t be too many of the old Hessian sacks surviving, I saw several hanging from the side of a cattle box at the match, along with a whole host of redundant equipment for land tillage and seed sowing. It really brought back to me just how labour intensive working the land used to be. I’ve had a wonderful response to the contract sack article last month and was sent a lovely email about a man called Les Pritchard, who worked for United Sack Contractors for 50 years. His daughter Liz told me that he started as an office boy when the company were West of England Sack Contractors in Queens Square Bristol. He later rose to become the company rep visiting farms and markets in the area. She also says that they were a good firm to work for; does anyone remember Les? Another story came from a lady whose mother used to make rag rugs out of the sacks, whilst I was reminded by my mother of how my grandmother would make school bags for her and her brothers from Hessian sack during the war. I’m sure that there is still more to tell of this story, so please let me have your recollections. I was reminded by a farmer at the ploughing match of how these sacks were used as a hooded cape to keep the rain off. I can remember using them to keep the hay from going down the back of my neck when carrying bales – sartorial elegance was everything! Don’t forget to hollow your pumpkin out for Halloween. I think this must be a bit of “Americanism” that has crept into our culture, because I don’t ever remember pumpkins being used. I certainly had a go using a mangold, but I don’t recall it being so popular as it is today. Finally I’ve got a picture (above) for you of a piece item rarely seen in Somerset, but more often linked to Hereford and Gloucestershire. It’s not complete, because the stone wheel is missing. I know what it is, but what do you think it is? You can always contact me through my website by tapping “” into your search engine.

I’m always happy to hear from you, so drop me a line at


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‘Over the next few months Yeo Valley will be bringing you a wide selection of guest writers from different areas of the family farm. Ranging from news from the garden, the farm team, the Mead family plus many more, we’ll be sharing a little about what’s going on behind the scenes here in the valley. Happy reading!’


Does supporting British matter?

‘Earlier this year, we changed our best selling packs to include a ‘Buy British’ message, pledging our support for British Food Fortnight; a fabulous celebration of British food and producers.’

THIS country, and being British, matters a lot to me. Today, our family still farms in the heart of Somerset with two dairy herds which make up a total of 420 organic British Friesian cows. Britain is where we live and, in living here, we experience all the emotions that go with everyday life; good, bad, sad, happy, the whole lot. Not being an academic student at school and suffering from dyslexia, I tended to shy away from intellectual debates due to my struggle to communicate what I was trying to say. However, ‘Does Supporting British Matter’? For me, it is neither intellectual nor academic; it is fundamental common sense. If we do not care about where we live and supporting our economy, then nobody else will. In my world of yogurt, the most staggering fact is that half of all the yogurts consumed in Britain are imported from mainland Europe; 300,000 tonnes per year made using half a billion litres of milk. In the past 11 years, over 8,000 dairy farms have been lost in England and Wales alone. Whilst I have nothing against the manufacturers of these products as some of them are excellent, it does nothing to help Britain and the people who live here. Do they pay tax to our government to spend on roads, hospitals and schools? Do they employ people in our communities? Do they source milk from our farmers? Do their profits end up being reinvested in our economy? As a business, we are aware of double standards. Of course, we want people to buy more British made Yeo Valley yogurts – that is our job. However we have lots of examples in our business where we could do better but, where viable British made options exist, we will make that choice. The latest is to replace a 30 year policy of buying Audi cars with Hondas, from Swindon. This should lead to three more jobs for Britain; a small step but we can go a long way with lots of small steps. Please join us on that journey. British dairy farms need our help if we want them to be here for the future. Buying British is a great way of supporting our dairy farms and the rural communities that depend on them. So the next time you pick up a pot of yogurt, why not take a look at where it’s from . . .

Find out more at MENDIP TIMES • NOVEMBER 2013 • PAGE 65

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What’s in a name?


WHY do plants appear to have fiendishly complicated names that are sometimes impossible to pronounce, even worse to spell, and far worse for some to

remember? It might appear that common names such as bluebell or lilac could suffice, but plants are grown across the world, and so we need an international language to enable worldwide communication. Common names can be very confusing. The much hated garden weed, known to many as bindweed, is known as withy wind in deepest Somerset, undoubtedly from its habit of winding its way up the willow stems or withies. Aegopodium podagraria, more commonly known as ground elder, is also called bishop’s weed, herb gerard or goutweed. Another common garden weed, Galium apparine goes under several names including Sticky Willy, Goosegrass and Cleavers. Plants often acquired common names to associate them with a use, often medicinal e.g. woundwort. An old herbal suggests ‘that the distilled water of the flowers is used to make the heart merry, to make a good colour in the face, and to make the vital spirits more fresh and lively.’ As more plants were introduced from abroad for ornamental purposes, they too acquired common names, but these can cause confusion as the names they were given, presumably unknown to those who invented them, were the botanical names of other unrelated plants. Syringa, for example, is the botanical name for lilac but is also the common name for Philadelphus. While nasturtium is the common name for Tropaeolum, the colourful, easy annual that Pooh Bear called Nasturshalums! But Nasturtium is actually the botanical name for watercress. So we need a way to be able to positively identify each plant. Plants are classified into families having similar floral characteristics although the actual plants within the family can vary dramatically. The rose family encompasses plants as diverse as apple trees, roses, Ladies Mantle, Potentilla and Cotoneaster. The dead nettle family is characterised by lipped flowers and often PAGE 66 • MENDIP TIMES • NOVEMBER 2013

square stems as illustrated by salvias, but also includes basil, marjoram and thyme. The buttercup family, Ranunculaceae, includes delphiniums, aconites, aquilegias, and Clematis. One of the simplest families to recognise is the daisy family, Asteraceae, all of which have traditional daisy shaped flowers. However, within the daisy family are a vast number of different plants such as Aster, Bellis (lawn daisies), Rudbeckia (cone flower), Argyranthemum (marguerites), Chrysanthemum, Gerbera, Centaurea (cornflower) and Echinacea to name just a few. The problem lies with the fact that there are hundreds of different asters so each one needs a name to identify it. Carl Linnaeus, a Swedish botanist, came up with the idea of giving every plant two names, rather like our own surname and forenames, and these would be in an international language based mainly on Latin. Instead of putting our forename first he put the surname first e.g. Aster and followed it with a second name, that often describes something about the plant. Aster macrophyllus (large leaves), Aster chinensis (from China), Aster dumosus (meaning bushy). This system worked well and he extended it to encompass the entire natural world to include mammals, insects, mosses, lichens, & fishes. Even the dinosaurs follow the same pattern e.g. Tyrannosaurus rex. The next problem occurs when plant breeders and gardeners start selecting better forms of each plant. Each of these needs a name. These used to be given another name in Latin e.g. Bergenia cordifolia ‘Purpurea’, but these days they are given names in the language of their country of selection. This third name is usually referred to as the variety name or cultivar. Thus Aster macrophyllus ‘Twilight’ is an improved form of the basic plant. Some of these varieties or cultivars are very stable and can be raised from seed as in the case of the vastly improved selection of wheat, oats and barley grown by farmers. Others, more commonly used in ornamental horticulture, are less stable and need to be propagated by cuttings or division in order to retain their genetic identity. Thus seed saved from say Rose ‘Peace’ may not produce plants resembling the parent plant, but there is

always the chance that they may produce a plant much better than the original. These days plant breeders often “copyright” their plants, thus making the most financially from their work. For every plant propagated they are given a fee and it is illegal for nurserymen or even home gardeners to propagate such plants for sale, even for charity. These plants have PBI (Plant Breeders’ Rights) after their name to indicate that they have been patented. This sounds impossible to police, and it certainly is in the case of home gardeners, but many new plant selections are propagated by specialist companies using micro-propagation techniques to produce vast numbers of tiny plants. These are then distributed to growers to grow on to the finished plant before it is sold on to the garden centres. This is big business these days and one plant, Geranium ‘Rozanne’, raised in the UK, is so outstandingly good that when a foreign nursery apparently had the same plant and called it Geranium ‘Jolly Bee’ the courts got involved and the DNA finger print was used to establish that all those sold as ‘Jolly Bee’ were actually ‘Rozanne’. It costs a lot to patent a plant but the financial rewards can be substantial with the demand for plants from gardeners, particularly if the plant is seen at Chelsea or Hampton Court Flower Shows. I feel sorry for the excellent plants that fail to become fashionable simply because they do not flower in time for the big shows. So spare a thought for the nursery industry next time you struggle to pronounce a well-loved plant with a complicated plant name, but feel free to continue to call it Auntie Flossie’s Pink. In the same way that the contents of our food should be accurately identified, the contents of the flower pot should be equally so.

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G Plant tulip bulbs (if not done already). Urgently plant any other bulbs. G Check potted bulbs that you are going to force into flower early. Make sure that they are well watered. G The winter flowering Cyclamen coum will be in stock this month, plant with the autumn flowering Cyclamen hederifolium for an extended display of colour. Plant in the shade of trees or in the rockery and watch them form strong winter flowering colonies over the years! G There’s still time to re-plant your tubs and hanging baskets for winter and spring colour. If you are not, take them down, empty them out and put them away for winter. G If you haven’t done it already, trim the dead flower heads off summer and autumn flowering heathers. A good pair of secateurs such as Felco (an excellent gift) is suitable for this. Trim a little of the shoot tips off too as this will keep them nice and compact. G Deciduous trees that have lost their leaves can be pruned now. G Fork over borders and work into the soil a slow release feed such as Fish, Blood and Bone or Bonemeal. G Move plants in pots together so that they protect one another in cold weather. Remove saucers from underneath them and ensure excess water can get away through the drainage holes in the base by standing them on pot feet. Courtesy Cleeve Nursery


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Cleeve Nursery, Cleeve, Bristol BS49 4PW Fantastic Fresh Tel 01934 832134 Email Christmas Trees Beautiful Houseplants National Garden Gift Vouchers and much more! MENDIP TIMES • NOVEMBER 2013 • PAGE 67


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AS darkness falls, Stoberry Garden is lit to enhance every part – sculptures, seating areas enclosed with intimate planting, the Rondavel, mature trees and shrubs full of texture and detail, an abundance of autumn beauty. As autumn gradually turns to winter, the structure of the garden is revealed and illuminating the garden gives the opportunity to observe the familiar in a new way. In the walled garden, the lights will illuminate beautiful sculptures, mature trees and the structure of herbaceous borders. In contrast the lower garden offers an open aspect, large ornamental grasses rustling in the evening breeze, garden sculptures, beautiful reflections in the pond and the fairy lights of Wells spread out before you. On Friday November 8th, instead of the usual bonfire, why not enjoy an evening out with friends and family in the relaxing peace of Stoberry Garden at night? Refreshments will be available and sparklers for the children. As the last NGS Open Garden of 2013 in Somerset, don’t miss your chance to enjoy a very special evening. Bring your woolly jumper and a torch! There is ample parking in the field next to the garden. NGS opening details: A Mystical Evening Opening with wine, Friday November 8th, 5pm – 8pm. Admission: £5, children free. Details: Frances and Tim Young, 01749 672906. Other Gardens Open for the NGS To see more gardens open for the NGS, see The Yellow Book, or Local County Leaflet, available from local Garden Centres, or go to:

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Palace under attack


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THE Bishop’s Palace in Wells is appealing for help in replacing 130 metres of Box hedging in the formal gardens, which is suffering from Box Blight, a fungal disease that attacks the Box plant resulting in bare patches and dieback. Head gardener, James Cross, said: “The brown patches of hedging are very evident and whilst they don’t look so out of place in the autumn, they will be quite an eyesore when spring comes and they should be looking green and healthy. “What makes this even more frustrating is that we have just completed a major project reinstating historic pathways and introducing new flower beds and planting based on historic records and imitating the romantic English Garden Style in this area of the gardens.” The palace needs to raise £3,000 and hopes to replace the hedging this winter.

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Camerton celebrates

RESIDENTS of Camerton are pictured celebrating their Silver Gilt award in the South West in Bloom competition. They are (standing l to r) Tony Fry, John Reeves, Ray Hutton, Ray Lithgo, Chris Taylor and (seated) Heather Edwards, Louise Fry, Maggie Hutton, and Camerton School pupils holding the improving assessment awarded to Camerton Church School. MENDIP TIMES • NOVEMBER 2013 • PAGE 69

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Young artist

Cable car protest

THE winners of Mendip Rotary’s Young Artists 2013 came from Year 9 of the Kings of Wessex Academy. The overall winner was Jess Blacklock (third from left) next to her teacher Rebecca Weaving, the head of art, with (l to r) Charlotte Cossins Price, Will Apted, Katie Cadell and Maddie Brown. Doug Johnson (on the far right) organised the event on behalf of Mendip Rotary. He said the judging was very difficult as the standard of art had been particularly high.

THE Somerset Campaign to Protect Rural England (CPRE) had a large turn-out for a meeting in Cheddar to protest about plans for a cable car in Cheddar Gorge, urging the gorge’s owners, the Longleat Estate, to pursue alternative proposals to encourage green tourism in the area.

MUTTS with Friends, a voluntarily funded dog rescue centre operating in the Chew Valley and surrounding areas, has launched a new website, which it hopes will save the lives of unwanted and abandoned dogs. Some of the dogs that find their way into the rescue centre are much-loved pets that for various reasons need to be re-homed due to changes in their owners’ circumstances. They are often confused and nervous when finding themselves

in the centre, but quickly adapt. They say that if you could offer a foster home, either short or long-term for these dogs, please contact them. They are always on the look-out for volunteers to walk the dogs and are in need of towels, blankets and sleeping bags for the dogs’ bedding, as well as tinned dog food, strong leads, metal food bowls and cleaning equipment such as brushes, mops and buckets.

Dog rescue service seeks support

Charity raffle for NGS

THE first ever National Gardens Scheme (NGS) Somerset Summer Raffle was drawn at The Yeo Valley Organic Garden by gardening expert Jekka McVicar. The special raffle draw tea party, kindly hosted by Tim and Sarah Mead of Yeo Valley Organic, was attended by over 40 NGS garden owners from all over Somerset, which as a county has raised a total of £56,000 for charity so far this year. Pictured (l to r) are NGS county organiser, Lucy Hetherington, Jekka McVicar, Sarah Mead and NGS supporter Annie Maw. PAGE 70 • MENDIP TIMES • NOVEMBER 2013


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Wizzy idea

Inner Wheel’s 90th

MIDSOMER Norton and Radstock Inner Wheel have joined a fund-raising campaign for a wizzybug wheelchair for loan to a local family. The wizzybugs are developed and produced for children under five by the Bath Institute of Mechanical Engineering, based at the Royal United Hospital. Mike Cosh of Somer Valley Rotary is pictured presenting £500 cheque to Brenda Whitchurch, president of Midsomer Norton and Radstock Inner Wheel. Details:

A WIZZYBUG has been loaned to Inner Wheel to help with a major fundraising project to buy one or more of them for disabled children and to mark Inner Wheel’s 90th birthday. It has been developed and made in Bath by the Institute of Medical Engineering (BIME) based at the RUH and has been designed to resemble the toy cars which toddlers love. Pictured are district chairman, Rita Jolliffe, with president Jan Stapleton from Bath, president Brenda Whitchurch from Midsomer Norton and Radstock, Nigel Harris from BIME, plus other inner wheel members and BIME staff.

Hospital donation

Rotary’s lasting legacy

IN 2005, Claude Champion, a former member and past president of the Rotary Club of Weston-superMare, left Weston Rotary Club a legacy of £60,000. This has been invested and the income of the fund

used for charitable purposes. Now the club has transferred the fund to Quartet Community Foundation, which can receive government funding of 50 per cent to add to all donations received before March 2015. Ronnie Brown, Quartet’s development director is pictured (left) receiving a for £62,000 from the club’s treasurer, Ken Lohmann, to set up the Rotary Club of Weston-super-Mare Claude Champion Fund. After handing over the cheque, Ken said that this new fund will ensure the long-term future of the Claude Champion legacy and increase rotary’s charitable giving. Details: • or telephone secretary Peter Castell 07904 925048.


In memory of mum

TERRY and Caroline Wynne, who run the Paulton Hospital Charity Shop, are pictured with Christine Ring, a senior member of staff at the hospital, with their latest donation of equipment. Since the new shop opened, it’s raised a staggering £7,500.

THE Harvey family of West Harptree raised more than £500 by taking part in the Alzheimers Memory Walk at Blaise Castle in Bristol in memory of mum Joan Elizabeth Harvey who had the illness for years. They want to thank their sponsors and now plan to make it an annual event. Pictured (l to r) Bradley Robertson, Emma Small, Linda Small, Michael Scott and Carol Robertson.

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Coffee for charity

HERE are just two of the many World’s Biggest Coffee Mornings held across Mendip in aid of Macmillan Cancer Support. The first photograph shows Val Legg, Margaret Reaks and Jenny Hodges, from Shepton Mallet Tangent Club, who held their event at the Salvation Army hall in the town in conjunction with Red Berry Recruitment. They are pictured with Emily Cradock and Emma Haskins, from the awardwinning company. The second photograph is from the event at Tincknells Country Store in Wells. Staff members Kevin English, Sam Moody and George Baker (store manager) are pictured with Michelle Shellard, who helped out during the event.

Running for mum


ROYAL Marine, Major Joe Winch, of 40 Commando, ran the Bristol Half Marathon in 1 hour 26 minutes and has so far raised £1,350 for Myeloma UK. Joe’s mum, Carol, was diagnosed with myeloma last summer. Up until her illness Carol was the manager of the St. Margaret’s Hospice shop in Street. She has since had six months of chemotherapy and then a stem cell transplant at King’s College Hospital, London and is at present in complete remission. There is currently no cure for myeloma, but treatment can halt its progress and greatly improve quality of life. Anyone wishing to support Joe can Google and follow search for fundraisers. Alternately you can send donations directly to Myeloma UK stating Joe’s name.

New head for Mendip CAB

Stuart Chadbourn (left) with Mendip CAB chairman Malcolm Williams

Charity’s new patrons

THE Great Western Air Ambulance charity has five new patrons who will be supporting their cause. The charity, providers of an air ambulance service for the 2.1m people of Bristol, Bath and the surrounding counties, was formed in 2008 and is the youngest air ambulance charity in England. The new patrons are, the Rt. Rev. Mike Hill, Bishop of Bristol and his wife Anthea, Professor Steve West, vice chancellor of UWE, Lady Gass, Lord Lieutenant of Somerset, and Mary Prior, Lord Lieutenant of Bristol. The charity is currently trying to raise £250,000 to replace its ageing helicopter and needs £1.5million a year to operate.

MENDIP Citizens Advice Bureau has appointed a new chief officer, Stuart Chadbourne, following the retirement of Sonia Pike. Stuart has over 20 years of senior management experience in the voluntary sector in both England and Wales. He has managed bureaux in both city and rural locations. Aside from CAB, he has worked in the disability field with organisations such as Arthritis Care and the Alzheimer’s Society and also worked with ex-offenders and people with mental ill-health. More than 100 local people volunteer for Mendip CAB and Stuart said he recognises the value of this to the area: “The power of volunteering to change people’s lives for the better makes its mark on me daily. Volunteers and volunteering is at the heart of everything I’ve achieved in my professional career. The CAB is nothing without its volunteers.” Stuart and his wife have moved from rural mid-Wales to Dinder. They already have ties to the area – their daughter lives in the Chew Valley area. MENDIP TIMES • NOVEMBER 2013 • PAGE 73

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From Wells to Freetown – via zipwire!

Teacher Holly Wilson prepares to descend the zipwire

STAFF and friends of a primary school in Wells took part in a charity zipwire event to raise funds to strengthen their friendship links with a school in Sierra Leone. The team members from St Joseph’s and St Theresa’s Catholic primary were amongst 300 people who “flew” from the balcony 148 feet up Cranmore Tower. The event was organised by the Shepton Mallet-based charity SOS Africa, with proceeds split 50-50 between themselves and ten other charities nominated by people taking part. More than £6,800 was raised. The Wells school recently hosted a week-long visit by teachers Patricia Lewis and Fatima Alpha from St Joseph’s primary school in Freetown. Patricia and Fatima taught African dance and art during their visit. Two members of staff from Wells – Frances Moreland and Holly Wilson – were due to visit the 870-pupil school in Freetown as Mendip Times went to press. Fatima leads some of the pupils who performed a dance at a farewell assembly for the Sierra Leone visitors


Patricia Lewis and Fatima Alpha are pictured with head teacher Angela Nolan, staff and pupils at SS Joseph and Theresa school The team from Wells. On the left is Matt Crowcombe, from SOS Africa

Long way down: Frances Moreland descends the zipwire

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Hospice helps couple renew wedding vows

DON Steward, aged 64, and his wife, Jen, 62, from Watchfield, in Highbridge renewed their wedding vows in the chapel at Weston Hospicecare 43 years after their original register office wedding. Don has suffered from a neurological problem for 20 years, which affects his mobility, and was diagnosed with lung cancer in September 2012. Despite having several rounds of chemotherapy, which proved to be unsuccessful, he then had a few months on a growth inhibitor drug, which was also unsuccessful. Don’s cancer is incurable. The couple, who have been together for 46 years, say they felt there was no better time to celebrate the “good life” they have shared. Don said they had wanted to have the ceremony on a cruise but due to his illness, it was not possible. He said: “I was talking to Karen, the hospice chaplain, during one morning in day hospice, telling her that Jen and I had always wanted to renew our wedding vows. I was upset that we had never achieved this. Karen said ‘I can do that here for you here’. I was ecstatic and couldn’t wait to tell Jen, although she was a little anxious about what it all meant.” Don has been attending Weston Hospicecare’s day hospice for seven months and has become good friends with his group and the staff there. Jen has got to know them over the months too and it was important to them that their friends at the hospice were able to share their celebration. Jen said: “Everyone there has become very dear to Don and myself since he started coming here in February. They were so excited once Don told them about the ceremony and I made some invites to hand out to everyone the week before.” Chaplain, Karen, said: “I was honoured to be able to bless their marriage here at the hospice and give them another fond memory to add to their endless collection.”

Freemasons celebrate

SOMERSET’S Royal Arch Freemasons have celebrated the 200th anniversary of the Supreme Grand Chapter of England with a dinner at the Webbington Hotel, where the principal guests were Mr Peter Hammond, from the Royal College of Surgeons, and his wife, Dr Monica Hammond. Guests were delighted to hear that a freemasons’ appeal launched three years ago to raise research funds for the college currently stands at £1.85million. More celebrations are planned in 2015 to mark the 250th anniversary of the first Royal Arch Convocation held at Bath in 1765.


Boost for air ambulance

WOOKEY-based Donate IT has given the fundraising efforts of Dorset and Somerset Air Ambulance’s volunteers a major boost following their donation of refurbished computer equipment. The equipment will be used by a team of volunteers to give presentations about the air ambulance to encourage organisations and individuals to help with their fundraising. Pictured (l to r) Paul Owen, paramedic; Gareth and Linda Bridges, volunteers; Debbie Birtwisle, air ambulance fundraising co-ordinator for Somerset; Helen Jefferis, volunteer; Paige Hibbert, Donate IT marketing assistant; Michelle Walker, paramedic; Julie Hope, volunteer; Dave Webber, air ambulance pilot and Jason Rees, Donate IT manager. Details: or call 0845 867 9544.

Santas for charity

DOROTHY House Hospice Care is inviting registrations for its third annual 6km Santa Dash on Sunday December 1st. It’s hoped the event, which attracted almost 120 runners last year, will see nearer 200 competitors complete an all-terrain course to and from the Winsleybased hospice grounds. Phillippa Watson, Dorothy House events fundraiser, said: “We have some more serious runners taking part as well as people who are just giving this distance a go to help raise funds for Dorothy House. As part of the registration we give an early Christmas gift – a Santa outfit which you will be expected to wear!” Registration is £15 or there’s an ‘early bird’ offer of £10 if you book before November 8th. It’s hoped all runners will collect a minimum of £25 in sponsor money. MENDIP TIMES • NOVEMBER 2013 • PAGE 75

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Helping with Parkinson’s

PEOPLE with Parkinson’s and their carers are very welcome at the Parkinson’s UK, North West Somerset branch coffee mornings held on the second Saturday in the month at St Francis Church Hall, Ash Hayes Road, Nailsea from 10.30am to 12.15pm. There is usually a guest speaker or entertainment, sometimes a quiz, but always a bring and buy sale and a raffle. On Saturday November 9th the speaker will be Peter Jenner, Professor of Pharmacology at King’s College London. Professor Jenner is director of the Neurodegenerative Diseases Research Centre and the National Parkinson Foundation Centre of Excellence and he leads an international research team that focuses on the cause, treatment and cure of Parkinson’s disease. The group will be in a festive mood on Saturday December 14th, when there will be musical entertainment from the Magpies, sherry and mince pies and a Christmas themed bring and buy sale. You are welcome to join them and enjoy a Saturday morning where you can chat with like-minded people who understand the Parkinson’s condition. They offer support and friendship and will even assist with transport if you have difficulty with mobility. Details: Jill Gilbert 01275 855524.

Ray weighs in for RNLI

RAY Conneely, from Chilcompton, weighed 23 stone when he accepted a challenge from a friend to undertake a charity cycle ride in aid of the RNLI. He bought himself a bike and went into a rigorous training regime for seven months, losing five stone before the event, riding from the Court Hotel, Chilcompton to the RNLI’s training college at Poole, in Dorset, in 3hrs 45mins. Ray is pictured (centre) presenting a cheque for £8,085 to Keith Williams and Tim Gracey, chairman and secretary of the Chew Valley fundraising branch of the RNLI. The branch now takes in Midsomer Norton/Chilcompton to the east, extending from the A38 in the west, Dundry to the north, with the Mendip Hills to the south. Details:


Rotarians back Cheddar food bank


Pictured (l to r): Tony Poole, Sue Albone and John Thatcher

THE Rotary Club of Wrington Vale recently welcomed Sue Albone, the mayoress of Axbridge, who explained the purpose and success so far of the Cheddar Valley Plus Food bank. She said the number of families in trouble and who need food supplied for immediate support is increasing rapidly. She also emphasised that it was young families with children, who were trying to pay their bills whilst on low wages, who were most affected, and not necessarily pensioners. The group eventually hopes to provide extra help with budgeting advice, debt support, IT training and basic cookery skills to help reduce reliance on pre-packed food necessity, as well as other measures. It also hopes to expand to include the parishes of Winscombe, Wedmore and Sandford, but will need local help and appropriate donations. Having set up the food bank, Sue emphasised the immediate need for local support with food donations, computer and document printing costs as well as storage costs. On the night, the Wrington Vale Rotarians donated a large quantity of tinned foods, which could be stored and supplied to needy people to show their appreciation for the value that the food bank was bringing to the community. This is part of a longer-term commitment by the club to support the venture.

Bumble celebration

CANCER charity Hope for Tomorrow has celebrated the first anniversary of the day Bumble, Staff and patients outside Bumble at West Mendip it’s Community Hospital Somerset Mobile Chemotherapy Unit, began giving treatments at West Mendip Community Hospital at Glastonbury. For more information, visit:

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Rural Crime Day of action

A PLEDGE by Avon and Somerset Police and Crime Commissioner Sue Mountstevens that rural communities would not be forgotten in the battle against criminals was much in evidence when dozens of police officers and volunteers visited farms across Mendip and South Somerset in a special day of action. By SIMON Ms Mountstevens gave the promise during a SELBY rural crime debate at the Dairy Show at the Bath and West Showground at Shepton Mallet (read more about the show elsewhere in the current issue of Mendip Times) and just days later the operation took place. The teams spoke to farmers, giving crime prevention advice and reassurance on how to protect their property, homes and livestock. Many farmers also took up the opportunity to arrange a personal crime prevention survey. During the day police visited 190 farms in areas including: Felton, Kilmersdon, Holcombe, Coleford, Chewton Mendip, The Horringtons, Oakhill, Emborough, West Compton, Butleigh, Walton, Keinton Mandeville, Bruton and Somerton, It led to 30 new Farmwatch sign-ups, two intelligence reports and 25 crime reduction survey requests. The day was the idea of Mendip Inspector Mark Nicholson, who was surprised when he visited a farm in the summer to find property insecure and vehicles left unattended with keys in the ignition. He said: “It just struck me that this was an open invitation to thieves. I know farms are working places, but with so much valuable equipment on site it seems common sense to encourage people to take some sensible and practical security measures.” Mendip rural crime officer PC Rowan Hawkins said: “Preventing rural crime is a massive priority for us. We are primarily a rural police force and we need to do whatever we can to cut crime in the countryside. “Farmers need to know that we understand the long-term effect that crime can have on their business and day-to-day working environment. For example, having diesel stolen can severely damage your ability to get the harvest in – particularly if you only

Manners matter

WHAT has happened to manners and whose job is it to make sure they are instilled in the next generation? I have recently returned from a trip to Australia and whilst there I witnessed an incident which prompted some thought regarding manners. Manners are defined as: “a person’s outward bearing or way of behaving towards others.” More specifically, bad manners are defined as: “impoliteness resulting from ignorance (related to ill-breeding & impoliteness) – a discourteous manner that ignores accepted social usage.” Whilst travelling into Syndey on the busy morning train, an elderly lady got onto the carriage at one of the stops. The train was filled with numerous people,

Commissioner Sue Mountstevens and Superintendent Ian Wylie, deputy commander for Somerset, before the start of the rural crime debate at the Dairy Show

have a short window in the weather – and that can cost a farmer thousands of pounds in lost crop production. David White, who farms just outside Wells, is a victim of rural crime. Last year burglars stole expensive garden and power tools from his now alarmed and CCTV-protected barn. Mr White, who is now a member of Farmwatch with warning signs at the farm gate, said: “It was very disturbing at the time because they seemed to know exactly what they wanted and where to find it.” Inspector Nicholson said other days of action were already being planned: “The overwhelming feeling is that the farming community was very positive about the visits, really pleased to see the police and also that rural crime and farming issues and concerns were being taken seriously by us.”

including a good number of youngsters, and I was taken aback when no less than five of us stood up at the same time to offer her a seat. What made me think was the surprise I felt when witnessing this demonstration of manners in a foreign country. It wasn’t that I hadn’t expected it from the Australians who, incidentally, are a great bunch of people; it was more that my travels in Britain had made an expectation of poor manners the norm. Sorry if some disagree, but generally that was the only conclusion after I’d thought about it for some time. My increasingly negative conclusion was further reinforced when I returned and read an article about how MPs in the

House of Commons had apparently ignored the seven-month pregnant Equalities Minister, Jo Swinson, failing to offer her a seat during Prime Minister’s Question Time and leaving her to stand (something the Lib Dem MP has dismissed as not an issue). So, whose job is it to make sure they are instilled in the next generation? I would suggest it predominantly sits with parents, carers, the extended family, educators and society in that order. One of the biggest influences in my life regarding my manners was my grandparents, and I am eternally grateful to them for instilling in me a degree of thoughtfulness (most of the time) which, hopefully, does me credit.


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Plant & Tools Hire & Sales • HIRE • SALES • REPAIR

Huge stocks of Tools & Equipment • Compactors • Drills • Cultivators • Angle Grinders • Breakers • Hedge Trimmers • Saws • Ladders • Rotavators • Hoists • Tile Cutters • Scarifiers • Scaffold Towers • Chain Saws • Carpet Cleaners Open Hours: Mon-Fri 7:30-5:00 • Sat 8:00-12:00

Long or Day Hire Delivery & Collection Service Trade & DIY

01934 743543 Wideatts Road, Cheddar BS27 3AP

Cheddar gets festive

CHEDDAR Festive Night will kick-start the village’s Christmas celebrations on Friday, December 6th, when traders throughout the village will be opening late, with mulled wine, mince pies and entertainment of all sorts on offer. The evening gets underway with a carol service in St. Andrew’s Church. Many houses and businesses will be decorated for Christmas and Cliff Street car park will be closed for a Festive Night fair. There’s be stalls this year in Cliff Street and Cox’s Mill car park, with two land-trains linking the village and the gorge. Details: Chris Hunt 01934 743534

A decade in Cheddar

ARIEN Signs Ltd are one of the leading providers of creative sign and design solutions with a nationwide client base run from Cheddar. Celebrating 10 years in Cheddar this year they have moved from strength to strength offering a friendly helpful service along with the latest materials and durable processes available. Having invested in large format flat bed printing equipment and C.N.C. cutting machinery Arien Signs Ltd can offer the most competitive prices due to their in-house manufacturing capabilities. Some of the products produced include: notice boards, corex signs, banners, posters, exhibition pop-ups and roller banners and vehicle livery.

Unit 8 Cheddar Business Park, Wedmore Road, Cheddar, Somerset BS27 3EB




Gates • Railings • Spiral and Straight Staircases • Fire escapes • Fire Baskets • Living Flame Gas and Electric Fires • A range of Lighting • Garden Arches and lots more.

Tel: 01934 743464 Fax: 01934 743487 Email:

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Cycling at Christmas Dawes Discovery hybrid range

AT Cheddar Cycle Store they stock a brilliant selection of quality new bikes in their showrooms at the start of the Strawberry Line cycle path on the Valley Line Industrial Estate. With a full range of Dawes bikes in stock – including children’s bikes from £89.99, hybrid, electric and touring bikes – it’s the place to buy your

bike this Christmas. With only a 10% deposit you can reserve your bike now – and there’s free delivery available up to 10 miles from Cheddar. They have lots of gift ideas too, with a full range of accessories and cycle clothing to choose from. Plus they offer repairs and services – no job is too big or too small. So why not try your local bike shop – call in today at Cheddar Cycle Store or visit their website at and cycle away a dazzling Dawes bike.


Christmas Party Menu

Available from Monday 25th November – Monday 30th December (excluding 25th December)

Spicy parsnip & butternut squash soup – served with warm bread roll Forrestierre terrine – medium ground pork with mushrooms, Melba toast & apple cider relish Smoked fillet of trout – on mixed leaves with lightly curried mayonnaise Caramelised red onion & Somerset brie tart – drizzled with a balsamic dressing Feta and roast pepper salad – with sun blazen tomatoes and Mediterranean olives drizzled with olive oil    Turkey – slow roasted crown of turkey accompanied by traditional pork, sage and onion stuffing, roasted smoked bacon wrapped sausage and served with rich turkey jus Seafood Medley – Scottish salmon, haddock & sea bass poached in a light saffron cream sauce Chicken – stuffed with spinach wrapped in Parma ham with tomato coulis Parsnip, chestnut &cranberry loaf – sweet parsnip, sharp cranberry & crunchy chestnut with port wine reduction Pork Belly – with an apricot, cranberry & garlic stuffing, rolled & slow roasted with thyme jus    Traditional steamed Christmas pudding – with brandy sauce Black Forest roulade – chocolate, Kirsch, double cream and cherry conserve Honeycomb cheesecake – smooth vanilla cheesecake packed with nuggets of honeycomb topped with milk chocolate Cheese – mature Cheddar, smoked Cheddar, Somerset brie and stilton with biscuits

£18.95 per person

Buy a new bike for Christmas WITH ONLY A 10%


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We are pleased to support Cheddar Vale Lions For their Bonfire on November 2nd The Tree of Light on December 5th Cheddar Festive Night on December 6th The annual Senior Citizens Shopping Trip on December 12th Contact: Chris Tony or Paul on 01934 742550 For all your insurance needs Bath Street, Cheddar, Somerset BS27 3AA Tel: (01934) 742550 Fax: (01934) 744559 Email:

Lions roar for Christmas

CHEDDAR Vale Lions are preparing for a busy couple of months. First up is their bonfire and firework event on Saturday November 2nd at Cheddar Rugby Club, Sharpham Road, Cheddar. Gates will open at 6.30pm and there will be a barbecue and bar. Tickets are available from Woodbury Insurance and Deane’s Outfitters in advance at £10 for a family ticket and £3 for a single. Tickets on the night will be £12 per family and £5 per single. The Lions’ Tree of Light will be lit at Cheddar Garden Centre on Thursday, December 5th – look out for details in local businesses or see their website. of light The following night, December 6th, the Lions will be out in force supporting Cheddar Festive Night. On Thursday December 12th they will hold their annual senior citizens shopping trip at Cheddar Garden Centre, with tea and mince pies. Details: Lion Sally on 01934 842317.

Kings new look

KINGS of Cheddar Valley Estate Agents have a new look, having rebranded their colours to freshen up the look of the company, and to celebrate the fact they are doing well, after riding the storm of the recession, thanks to hard work and perseverance. The independent company has property for sale and to let throughout Cheddar and the surrounding area. Established in 1996 the company evolved from a one-owner business to a partnership in 2010.

Cheddar Signs – and Print

IN addition to their comprehensive range of sign, vehicle and visual graphic products, Cheddar Signs have for the past three years offered their customers a quality print service. Owner, Shaun Harris, said: “With continued growth in both the print and sign departments of the business, we recently took the decision to make the company branding more identifiable. “Now branded as Cheddar Sign and Print we want to ensure all of our existing and future customers recognise the Cheddar Signs brand for the quality products and service that we are known for.“

Highnam craft fair

Now selling custom-made Christmas hampers from £20 Come and see us on Cheddar Festive Night Winter opening: Tuesday-Friday 9am-3pm Saturday 9am-4pm Closed Sunday and Monday

01934 742212 PAGE 80 • MENDIP TIMES • NOVEMBER 2013

JEN Rowlands, who opened Highnams Deli at Tweentown in Cheddar in the summer, is planning to hold a craft fair there on November 19th, 6pm-9pm. Anyone interested in taking part should contact Jen on 01934 742212. She will also be open for Cheddar Festive Night on December 6th.

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Saving the hedgehog

VERY rarely would anyone have the need or desire to cuddle a hedgehog but yesterday I found myself doing just that. I had peered in through the bars of his cage and I saw a body that was clinging on to life for all it was worth but a spirit that had long given up; we really were fighting for his life. I picked him up, wrapped him in a fleece blanket and AMY Chandler, a held him close to my chest. I complementary therapist, wanted him to feel the familiar is one of 75 volunteers warm heartbeat of another mammal comforting him, as who support the work of cosy as he would have felt in Prickles Hedgehog his mother’s womb. Rescue, based in Cheddar. You see, I volunteer at Jules Bishop, who Prickles Hedgehog Rescue in founded the charity five Cheddar and my role is very years ago, said their varied. I give my time one support is “absolutely morning a week to work with a brilliant”. The volunteers team of lovely people who all include local people, want to do their bit and make a students, people difference. The aim of the sponsored by local morning shift is to get all the companies and a vet who crates cleaned, see how much gives the charity a day of his time every week. the hedgehogs have eaten, how As the charity gears up much weight they have gained for its busiest time of the or lost and to make general year, Amy explains what observations on their condition. motivates her to help. Hedgehogs are surprisingly easy to handle when you know how and their whimsical ways are most endearing. I have to admit, I don’t volunteer at Prickles because I love hedgehogs, I do it because I love wildlife and I want to feel like I’m helping British wildlife – I would do the same for any other animal. Hedgehogs have been around for over 15 million years, long before the sabre-toothed tiger, woolly rhinos and the mammoths and yet now their numbers are in such rapid decline that they face near extinction very soon. No longer are they seen charging around the hedgerows at dusk and no longer can they be stewed up in a goulash, because they have joined the ranks of many other British mammals and birds – on the Protected Species list. The way humans inhabit the Earth has led to this decline, with their motor vehicles, their walled gardens, their constant destruction of habitat and their intensive farming methods. If we are going to contribute to destroying a species we might as well contribute to saving it. is an interactive fun website dedicated to helping the public provide better habitats and access routes for hedgehogs – have a look and see if there’s anything you can do to help. My cuddly little hedgehog is known simply as 604. He was picked up cold, emaciated, with abscesses on his belly and a loose jaw. He had immediate veterinary treatment but they had never seen a hedgehog with these symptoms before. He’s on pain relief and antibiotics. In his cage he rests on a heat pad as he’s too poorly to maintain his own body temperature.

FOCUS ON CHEDDAR He’s not eating or drinking and he’s lost 10g every day he’s been with us. We’ve been keeping his fluids up using subcutaneous injections of warm saline solution and tonight the care manager is going to try syringe feeding him a special food called AD Critical Care. In a few days’ time he will go back to the vets for a check-up. If he has made progress we will carry on caring for him; if he has not he will be put to sleep. Under normal circumstances we keep our contact with the hedgehogs to the minimum – they are wild animals and need to remain wild. But just occasionally, in severe cases, a cuddle can give them a pick-me-up. When I go in for my next shift the first thing I will do is look for 604. Based on statistics from previous years Prickles has estimated that they will be caring for over 200 hedgehogs by Christmas. Would you like to get involved? Available voluntary positions are: Care Assistants – morning cleaning shift, late afternoon feeding shift Response drivers – hours to suit, petrol expenses paid Duty managers – team leading, maintaining care standards, liaising with the public and the vets Care supervisors – (a nursing or animal care back ground required) administering meds and making life saving decisions Fundraising – join the team or hold your own events If you are interested in volunteering, would like more information or would like an application form please contact Sam Smith: Email or call 07779 058667. If you want to help but don’t have the time you could respond to our wish list on Amazon or drop in donations of cat food in jelly, dried mealworms, strong bin liners, latex gloves, newspapers and Finish dishwasher tabs to Prickles Hedgehog Rescue, 7, Copper Close, Cheddar. You could Sponsor a Hedgehog via our website (these make great gift packs) or pledge a monthly donation by standing order and receive our monthly Prickly News. If you have seen a small hedgehog, a hedgehog out in the daytime, or are worried about a hedgehog please call our 24/7 line: 07806 744772. A few hours can be the difference between life and death. Do not attempt to care for hedgehogs at home – they are complex mammals that need specialist treatment. Amy Chandler Details:

I offer professional support for owner-managed businesses and small companies, including • Business planning and advice • Management and year-end accounts • Budgets and forecasts • Tax returns and tax planning • Payroll and VAT • Company secretarial services For a free initial consultation contact Helen Bardle at

7 Cliff Street, Cheddar, BS27 3PT Tel 01934 744333 or 07974 343335 Email MENDIP TIMES • NOVEMBER 2013 • PAGE 81

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TONY Wallington, who runs the Kings Head in Cheddar, is earning himself the title “The Singing Landlord”, as he establishes the pub as a music venue, concentrating on folk and acoustic nights, along with resident DJ Dr Love’s Vinyl Revival Show, as well as singing himself.


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ESTABLISHED in 1998, The Gorge Outdoors stocks a large range of footwear, equipment and outdoor clothing from their store in Cheddar Gorge. They have catered for many people in the south west and also ship worldwide. You will find that their high quality range of footwear and outdoor clothing is very competitively priced.

THE KINGS HEAD Traditional 17th century thatched inn, the oldest in Cheddar

Open 4pm – Late Monday to Friday 12 Noon – Late Saturday and Sunday Live music every Thursday with traditional Folk music or an Open Acoustic night. All are welcome to join in. Live performers every weekend – call for details. Pub quiz on Sundays Bar snacks and hot pies served daily. A good locals’ pub where all are warmly welcome. Probably the cheapest pub in Cheddar. 1, Silver Street, Cheddar, Somerset BS27 3LE Tel 01934 436229



Beating the recession

IN a national survey, consumer group Which? found that independent double glazing companies leave customers more satisfied than large national companies. Surveying 2,562 of its members, Which? found that independent companies scored a huge 83% across six areas – 20% more than the highest scoring national competitor – rating criteria such as, “manner of salesperson”, “value for money” and “quality of products”. With many double-glazing firms now offering similar quality products, differing prices are often due to higher staff, marketing and overhead costs. Customers have found that smaller companies do not need to pass those costs onto the customer. Adam Packer, owner of Cheddar firm Somerset Glass and Gardens commented: “Knowing the hard-sale reputation of double-glazing sales staff, we were determined to create a company in our village that relies on reputation, rather than persistent and dubious sales techniques. “In fact, we don’t even employ a sales person! By keeping our company small, we have performed very well during the recession with sales this year up by 45%.”

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Carnival success – but bridge creates a gap CASTLE Cary’s annual carnival celebrations have been declared a success in terms of the quality and number of entries. However, the number of spectators for the main procession was down by around a third, which organisers attributed to the closure of the A371 railway bridge at Castle Cary rail station. The drop in numbers also led to a big fall in the amount of money raised. The town’s carnival is spread over two weekends, with the children’s carnival taking place a week before the evening procession. The two events together raised more than £2,000 for local charities and organisations. Organisers were also forced to introduce new road safety measures which meant additional marshal. Carnival Society President Gordon Stockman said: “It took a lot more coordination and people to make this year’s carnival work. So I am very grateful to all the marshals – the returning and especially new folk – who volunteered to help us on Saturday.” Committee member Paul Hansford said: “It’s good to know that everyone who came to our carnival gave as generously as ever; it’s just a shame that the road closure may have prevented more spectators coming.”


The children’s procession makes its way through the town

Some of the cast of Britannia CC’s entry Re-Vamped

Carnival royalty: Finlay, Iona, Yazmin, Lincoln and Lily-Rose

Years 3 and 4 from Castle Cary primary school

Cary Comedians CC took the Best Local Float award with their entry Pirates of the Curried Beans MENDIP TIMES • NOVEMBER 2013 • PAGE 83

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Swing low for fatherhood

DO men with small balls make better fathers? It sounds like a joke rather than a bit of kosher research but an ethical committee somewhere must have taken it seriously. Or more specifically, at Emory University, Atlanta, where the research took place and has been published in a journal called “Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences”. The study recruited 70 biological fathers (aged between By Dr PHIL 21 and 55) who had between one and four children, at least HAMMOND one of which was aged one or two years. Fathers’ “actual caregiving, and their desired levels of caregiving”, were measured through mother and father-reported questionnaires. This asked both parents to assess who had primary responsibility for 24 tasks using a five-point scale ranging from “mother almost always” to “father almost always”. These tasks included things such as “take the baby to preventative health care clinic,” “bathe baby,” and “attend to baby during night waking.” The scores were added up to give a “parental caregiving score”. The researchers then measured testicle size using MRI scans and blood testosterone levels. They found that men with higher testosterone levels and bigger balls did “less actual caregiving and less desired caregiving”. Fathers with massive balls who have never changed a nappy could argue that they’re busy working and providing the money to buy the nappies but the researchers also found that men with smaller balls did not do fewer hours in the workplace nor earn less. However, when men with large balls looked at pictures of their children in an MRI scanner, less of their “caring brain” lit up than men with small balls. Are these results a load of balls? It may be testicle size and testosterone do affect your nurturing desires but you’re hardly likely to check-in for a ball reduction before you become a parent. Half of us will always be below average for skills and sizes, so don’t beat yourself up or worry about your balls size unless a) there’s a definite lump in there in which case get it checked immediately or b) your balls are so big and dangly, they get in the way of you changing a nappy. In which case, please send me a photo. Fatherhood is both tough and fabulous, whatever age it hits you, but if you’re struggling talk things through with your partner or other dads. There’s also the NHS Choices Information Service for Parents which has hundreds of videos full of DIY parenting advice. Anxious dads (or mums) can: Watch: The best things about being a dad Watch: What do I do if I don’t love my baby? (for dads) Watch: How do we resolve differences and find common ground as parents? Watch: How do I calm my crying baby? Above all, don’t be put off becoming a father when the time is right by the size of your balls. Without them, you’d never be a dad. PAGE 84 • MENDIP TIMES • NOVEMBER 2013

Are you ready yet?

UNTIL I had children I did not understand that the simple act of leaving the house could be a monumental challenge. Reality dawned on me after I had my first baby and the baby clinic’s opening times, between 10am and 12noon, seemed an impossibly narrow window. Over 15 years later and I still have not perfected the art of shutting the door, turning the key in the lock and striding away without a care in the world. Inevitably, the forgotten lunch box, reading diary, permission slip for the school outing, PE kit or bus fare bring me back to the threshold several times after the first attempt to leave. First child was a dreamer and easily distracted when we needed to leave the house. She did not take kindly to orders and was more interested in snail colonies than arriving promptly at school. Fortunately, second child liked military orderliness. She did a good job of ensuring all permission slips were handed in and was even known to fit in vacuuming the downstairs before we left for school. However, she has now begun secondary school and small son and I are left to our own devices once more. Small son takes the art of distraction to dizzying heights. Like the other morning – we had approximately 20 minutes before we had to leave the house. I had warned him of the deadline and while I was scraping welded porridge from a pan (no-one wants to face this task at 6pm before cooking the evening meal) he was meant to be getting dressed. As I have learnt some parenting skills in 15 years I did not shout up the stairs for a second time: “Please brush your teeth and get dressed quickly.” Instead I left the pan half scraped and began to climb the stairs to see what progress had been made. About half way up I heard him chortling to himself: “A cheese show!” “Look,” he exclaimed excitedly holding a copy of Mendip Times, “Frome has had a cheese show!” The front page headline had distracted him. He was half dressed, but more in pyjamas than school uniform. Several pencils were scattered across the floor along with a bizarre drawing of cheeses that looked more Jahlsberg than West Country Cheddar complete with speech bubbles saying things like: “I am Scrooge” and “I am Tiny Tim.” In the far corner of the page was something that looked like an amorphous mass. I was distracted now. “It’s a melted cheese,” he explained, “playing the part of The Ghost of Christmas Past!” Instead of shouting I had to take a deep breath and remind myself that mornings might never be this much fun again. MENDIP MUM

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Ben meets the challenge



BENJAMIN Palmer, owner of Wells Chiropractic and Osteopathy Centre, has completed the infamous SAS “Fan Dance” challenge – a 20km cross-country trek across the Brecon Beacons. The challenge, which hit the headlines in the summer after the deaths of some service personnel, involves crossing six peaks in under five hours. Ben was raising money for Temwa, a Bristol-based charity which creates sustainable projects and community programmes in Malawi. Ben said: “Temwa was founded by a good friend of mine 10 years ago, teaching local villages how to plant forests, grow crops and learn vocational skills so they can essentially support themselves and become sustainable. And, more importantly, it’s actually working!”




Accommodation available now with full en-suite Court House is a very special place to live, the very fact that it is made up of different areas of accommodation adds to its attraction. e Main House with gracious large rooms with full en-suite looking out onto different aspects and personalized with Resident’s own furniture and pictures etc. A spacious Drawing Room with doors to a covered veranda and patio area leading onto lawns and flower beds. e Courtyard which has lovely vaulted accommodation with full en-suite and cleverly concealed kitchenettes where Residents can make a cup of tea or a snack for themselves or their guests and small raised gardens so that the people living there may, if they so wish plant and tend their own flowers. e lovely cottage accommodation full of character with a large Victorian style conservatory looking towards St. Andrews Church and doors opening out from a lovely sitting room to a tranquil garden. Putting all of this together with the very special care given by dedicated staff that respect and give privacy and dignity to all who live here, you can see why people who come to live at Court House are so happy to have found this very special place.

Respite Care also available

“One of the most beautiful and well kept retirement homes I’ve ever seen”. – e Photographer

Please contact Chris Dando 01934 742131 Website:



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Healthy Christmas

MENDIP Complementary Health is set in tranquil and relaxing surroundings in Winscombe in the heart of the Mendips. They are located in the centre of the village, with plenty of free parking and offer a full range of complementary therapies and a multi-disciplinary approach to health and lifestyle. These include acupuncture, allergy testing, pilates, massage, counselling, classical manipulation and yoga. They are also the home of the Winscombe running group. The centre is currently offering vouchers for Christmas.

We offer a full range of Complementary Therapies with a multidisciplinary approach to health care and lifestyle. Why not call in and see what we have to offer. Feel the best you can and achieve optimum health with our expert practitioners.

For Details Ring 01934 844459 1B Sandford Road, Winscombe, Somerset BS25 1HD.

We are situated opposite The Woodborough Inn, ample free parking.

Hair company’s extensions

THE Wells Barber Company is to launch a new exclusive evening service for ladies with a series of free events. Owner Inez Findlay says the new appointment-only venture – to be known as Wells Hair Company – is an exciting time for the business and is aimed at women with busy and hectic lifestyles. The business is based next to Wells Library and the Union Street car park, which is free to use in the evenings. Wells Hair Co is being launched on Tuesday, November 19th and the team is offering a free hair cut or blowdry from 5.30pm until late. The free offer continues on the Wednesday, Thursday and Friday of that week and drinks


Sandra’s award

CANCER Treatment Nurse Lead, Sandra Jones, has won a top honour, the Laing and Buisson Award for Nursing Practice, after setting up the Oncology Service at CircleBath and for “her dedication to excellence for both clinical standards and patient experience”. She is credited with attracting the highest calibre oncology consultants who were inspired by Sandra’s vision and Circle’s credo ‘we are the agents of our patients’. Sandra makes herself available to all her patients 24/7, offering advice, comfort and encouragement and has forged links with the local Trust and the Dorothy House hospice, as well as with the London Clinic to utilise their CyberKnife technology. She also works tirelessly on cancer charity events at the hospital; from raising awareness to organising fun events like car washes with Bath Rugby team.

and nibbles will be available. Wells Barber Co – also affectionately known as the Upside Down Barbers – is now offering traditional wet shaves and special occasion packages for men, again by appointment. Inez, who has 20 years’ experience in the hair industry, started work at the salon five years ago, buying the business two years later. The six-strong team at the salon are all good friends. Inez said: “We know there are a lot of women out there who simply don’t have time during the day to visit their hairdresser. We’re looking forward to the new venture.”


Mens Wedding and Special Occasion Packages (by appointment) Classic Package: £25 (including) wash and head massage, style, traditional wet shave including hot towels and oils plus face massage Delux Package: £35 (including as above plus cut)

STYLING: Cut & Blow Dry: £27 • Blow Dry: from £11 FULL HEAD COLOUR (from): Permanent: £33 • Semi-permanent: £25 REGROWTH COLOUR (from): Permanent: £25 • Semi-permanent: £18 FOILS: Full Head Foils: From £45 • Half Head Foils: From £35 PERMING: From £35 • HAIR UP/BRIDAL: From £20 HAIR EXTENSIONS: From £160 25% OFF FIRST APPOINTMENT

Opening Times: Mon, Wed, Thurs & Fri: 9am-5.15pm; Tues: 9am-6pm; Sat: 8am-4.15pm

(Some treatments may be priced at the time of treatment) (By evening appointment only)

Wells Barber and Hair Co, 2 Library Mews, Union St. Wells, BA5 2PU.

Tel: 01749 676378. Website:

Cut: £9.50. • Wash & Cut: £11.50 • Over 65s Wash & Cut: £9.00 • All Over Clipper: £6.50 • Child’s Cut: From £7.50


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Successful first year

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AFTER her first year practising in the Chew Valley, Dr Georgina Jefferies, who formerly worked as a consultant anaesthetist in the North West, has established her reputation as a very effective medical acupuncturist. Working from the Chew Medical Practice, she successfully treats patients with migraine, back, neck and knee pain. Treatments for health and general wellbeing are also an important part of her repertoire, as is the management of women’s problems. She keeps abreast of the latest developments in medical acupuncture, including the use of electrical stimulation techniques. In the run-up to Christmas, Georgina is offering treatments on a five for four basis, so why not buy a course for a friend or indulge yourself? The course begins with a 45-minute consultation, which includes checking a full medical history and the first treatment, followed by a further four 20-minute treatments at a time convenient to the patient.


Singles Social Group

(Not a dating agency – est. 1979) Age range 40 – 60 approx.

Weekly Bar Night Events include: walks, dances, parties, meals out, theatre, cinema etc. For further details call 01749 330455 01278 788077 01458 840958 01934 743139

Get your party feet ready for Christmas!




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David Lafferty

I WROTE some years ago about David Lafferty, who in 1966 established a world endurance record for living alone in a cave. This took place in the Boulder Chamber of Gough’s Cave and the mud platform where he pitched his tent is still pointed out by leaders on adventure caving trips. With PHILIP In 2010, there was world-wide concern for HENDY a group of Chilean miners who were trapped deep underground by a rock fall. They were eventually all rescued by drilling a borehole down to them and then bringing them out, one by one, in a cramped canister. During their ordeal, David was interviewed by Radio 5 Live, although there was no real comparison between his self-inflicted sojourn underground and the plight of the trapped men. At least David could have been easily released at any time. He had battled with cancer for many years, and shortly after the interview, on October 2nd, he succumbed. He was buried on October 14th, on the day the last miner was rescued, and would surely have enjoyed the irony. Recently, Cheddar Caves were given the helmet, carbide lamp and anorak he used in Gough’s Cave, by his wife Uta. The helmet is of the old miners’ fibre type, painted bright red. The Premier carbide lamp, or ‘stinky’, is typical of the lighting used by the majority of cavers of the day, although ex-National Coal Board rechargeable electric caplamps were becoming available. One of these would have been of no use to David, as he would not have been able to recharge the NiFe cells. The anorak, by Blacks, is in good condition, and was probably new for the occasion. Caving clothing in the sixties was a miscellany of old clothes and cast-offs, although boiler suits were quite common and formed the basis for the modern one-piece oversuit. There are instances in history of hermits and religious zealots being walled-up in caves and various other places so they could seek isolation and enlightenment. The idea of cavers seeking to set

CAVING Lafferty reappearing

solo underground endurance records started in 1962, when a wellknown French caver, Michel Siffre, spent 62 days alone in a cave. His record was beaten by two days later in the year by Bill Penman, an Australian. Current thinking at the time was that to stay underground in isolation for much longer would result in a disastrous deterioration to physical or mental health, or both. Determined to disprove the experts (who had no real scientific evidence for their claims) in 1963 Geoff Workman spent 105 days alone in the far reaches of Stump Cross Cavern, a show cave in Yorkshire. The 50th anniversary of this record achievement takes place later this year. As a publicity stunt, in 1966, Viscount Weymouth (now Lord Bath) and Cheddar Caves manager Gerald Robertson planned a similar attempt, though they now had to beat the 126-day record set by Antoine Senni, a Frenchman, the previous year. This time, however, Viscount Weymouth instigated some rules, which have been adhered to since. The person making the attempt would not be able to escape from the cave unaided. The Boulder Chamber in Gough’s was ideal, as at that time the only access was by flexible Electron ladder, which was removed after the camp was established. There was to be no direct human contact, though a telephone was allowed, in case of emergency. There was also to be no way of telling the time and no information about what was happening on the surface was to be relayed down the cave. No caver wished to volunteer – in fact the whole stunt was frowned on by the cavers of the day. Eventually a young ex-RAF flying officer, David Lafferty, volunteered and the rest is history. He beat Senni’s record by one day, but this 127-day record did not last long, as the French reclaimed it within a month. No other British attempt on the record has been attempted, but the French and the Italians took up the challenge. One Italian in particular, Maurizio Montalbini, made five attempts, which included two world records and a total of 1,025 days underground. The 366-day record achieved in 1992 has not been surpassed, though his attempt for a record of 1,000 days failed when Montalbini fell ill. He has since died, in 2009, and no-one else has been able to better it. Although some have claimed that these stunts help scientists understand the reaction of the human body to prolonged isolation, as might be required in missions to explore deep space, the fact is that NASA and others are more likely to conduct such trials in mock-up spacecraft. Anyone wishing to attempt this type of world record is much more likely to be seeking the fame of an entry in the Guinness Book of Records.

Phil is a member of Wessex Cave Club and has been caving for the last 44 years. Still active, his main interest is in digging to try to find new caves. He has published a caving cartoon book and collaborated on the recently-published Swildon’s Hole – 100 Years of Exploration. PAGE 88 • MENDIP TIMES • NOVEMBER 2013

Photography by Phil Hendy

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South West house sales hit highest level in over five years

THE number of homes sold in the South West is at the highest level since February 2008 as the housing market recovery continues to gather pace, says the latest RICS residential market survey. The average amount of properties sold per chartered surveyor in the three months to September reached 19. Although still historically low, this figure is higher than the UK as a whole and demonstrates the extent to which the market is now picking up in the region. In tandem with increasing numbers of sales, prices continued to grow in the South West with 46 per cent more respondents reporting rises rather than falls – this is the highest figure since May 2004. Unsurprisingly, with government schemes such as Help to Buy enabling more buyers to access the market, demand rose steadily during September as a net balance of 67 per cent more surveyors reported rises in new buyer enquiries. The number of new instructions fell slightly in the region with 11 per cent more respondents reporting rises rather than falls, potentially pushing prices up further in some areas. Looking ahead, predictions for future growth are equally upbeat. A net balance of 47 per cent more respondents expect the number of transactions to increase further over the coming three months, while 36 per cent more predict prices to continue their push upwards.


Charming Grade II listed farmhouse set in in 2.6 acres of formal gardens with tennis court, orchard and small woodland. The accommodation comprises, drawing room, three reception rooms, kitchen breakfast room, family room/snug, four double bedrooms, master en-suite, family bathroom, two cloakrooms and shower room. Sweeping driveway with Double and single garage. EPC:F . Ref: 24616 GUIDE PRICE £849,950

Wrington Tel: 01934 864300

We’ve got it covered

Mendip Times Distribution Points

Mendip Times is available from over 800 outlets across the Mendips from superstores to village stores and post offices, farm shops, supermarkets, garden centres, pubs, inns, hotels and restaurants, doctors’ surgeries, libraries and tourist information centres. ALHAMPTON AXBRIDGE BALTONSBOROUGH BACKWELL BANWELL BARROW GURNEY BARTON ST. DAVID BECKINGTON BISHOP SUTTON BLACKFORD BLAGDON BLEADON BRENT KNOLL BRISTOL INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT BROCKLEY BRUTON BUCKLAND DINHAM BURCOTT BURRINGTON BUTLEIGH CAMERTON CASTLE CARY CHARTERHOUSE CHEDDAR CHELYNCH CHEW MAGNA CHEW STOKE CHEWTON MENDIP







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Chew Magna Christmas Street Party


December THE Pelican and the Bear and Swan have joined forces to hold the Chew Magna Christmas Street Party on Thursday December 12th, from 5.30pm. They will be closing off the village car park to bring you a fun-filled festive event for all the family, with hog roast, mulled wine, craft stalls, local choirs, Santa’s grotto, fairground rides and much more. Wrap up warm and get along to enjoy the fun.

If you are interested in selling your arts and crafts, contact Nicola at The Pelly, 01275 331777.

High Class Family Butcher

Quality you can trust

Order Now for Christmas

Traditional service Meat and produce from local farms

High Street, Chew Magna Tel: 01275 332417



The Bear and Swan

Don’t miss our 8 course Gourmet Evening with accompanying wines on Wednesday 6th November. Pop in throughout the day and sample our freshly prepared Express Lunchme Menu.

2 Course £12 3 Course £15

Chew Magna, Bristol BS40 8PR We are pleased to support the Chew Magna Village Street Party on December 12th


Building experts

R O DANDO & SONS LTD is a family owned and run company, based in Chew Magna, which was founded by the present owner’s great grandfather over 100 years ago. They are proud of their valley roots and the fact that they are one of the oldest established businesses in the village. As a company they provide a full building service from small works to new build and major renovation and extensions using their award-winning team of operatives. And with the experience of many years trading they will try to make your building project as smooth as possible.

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Classic flowers – and gifts!

CLASSIC Flower Designs run an independent flower business, creating flowers for weddings, funerals and special occasions. Their reputation is rapidly growing across the Chew Valley for their country-style flowers, tastefully arranged in hand-tied bouquets, jugs and containers. Taking their inspiration from the English cottage garden, they use flowers that are seasonal and natural in style, combining herbs and foliage in their work. If you are seeking flowers for your business, they can supply arrangements on a weekly basis. Alongside their daily flower business they also have a very popular Flower School, with both regular evening classes and seasonal courses. Their shop in Chew Stoke, which sells cut flowers, plants and ready-to-go bouquets, also stocks a wide range of china, giftware, cards and wrapping. The talented team make much of the range themselves, including children’s clothes and knitwear, candles and bunting. It really is worth a visit – their Christmas stock is in the shop now!

Help for business

THIS has been a fairly stressful year for many employers with the introduction of Real Time Information (RTI) reporting for PAYE alongside the usual raft of employment legislation and red tape that makes being an employer such a “joy”. There was some good news in the budget with the promise of a £2,000 National Insurance break for employers coming next year but that will be tempered by the potential costs of the workplace pension reforms and automatic pension enrolment requirements which are already being rolled out and likely to affect the majority of smaller employers over the next two years. Underwood Lamb provide payroll services to many clients and have helped them overcome the RTI hurdle fairly painlessly and they are already gearing up for the potential impact of the pension reforms. Most of their payroll services are provided to clients for whom they also provide accountancy and tax advice but they can also provide outsourced payroll services as a stand-alone service if required.





Telephone: 01761 452171 Fax: 01761 453342

The Wedding Florists based in the heart of the Chew Valley. Natural, country lowers for your wedding day

A traditional %lower shop selling cut %lowers, planted containers and ready to go arrangements. You can also buy gifts, handmade treats and cards.

You can -ind them at Unit 5, Fairseat Workshops, Stoke Hill, Chew Stoke, Bristol BS40 8XF Tel: 01275 333095/0780 1953638 • ‘Seasonal %lowers, herbs and foliage mixed with a little country chic . . . the English cottage garden in a bouquet’


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Focus on the Chew Valley property market AS we approach 2014, there are signs that the property market in the Chew Valley is improving, fuelled by greater economic confidence and an easing in lending conditions. Land and estate agents, Killens are based in the heart of the Chew Valley with prominent offices situated in the centre of Chew Magna. The office is headed by Matthew Bingham, an associate partner, who has operated in the area for many years. Matthew said: “We are seeing much more activity in the property market with greater interest from potential purchasers in residential properties across all sectors and an increased number of sales achieved. There are many seeking to buy who are frustrated by a lack of suitable properties in the market.” The market is proving much more positive than 12 months ago when the Chew Valley experienced unprecedented rainfall leading to flooding and some being forced to leave their homes and seek temporary accommodation. Most have now returned to their houses but spare a thought for those who haven’t been able to move back yet. Although this was a rare event that is now being addressed by the authorities, the weather had an impact on the local property market, no thanks in part to the widespread media coverage. At that time, the staff at Killens were constantly asked by potential buyers if properties they were marketing flooded or could flood,

even though some properties were situated on Dundry Hill! During 2013, buyers have returned, recognising the huge number of benefits that the Chew Valley offers with a beautiful landscape, a strong community, excellent schools and facilities and the proximity to Bristol and Bath. At the end of September, Killens offered a bungalow situated between Bishop Sutton and Hinton Blewett for sale by auction and there was a phenomenal level of interest. Set in two acres, the property was in need of renovation and almost 100 potential purchasers viewed the property. Offered at a guide of £300,000, the bungalow was greeted with strong bidding eventually selling for £460,000 to a local buyer. Tom Killen, who conducted the auction, said: “There was an incredible level of interest in the property and the auction room was packed and buzzing. This sale clearly demonstrates that improvement is under way in the property market.” In addition to selling property, Killens also have a busy lettings department based in Chew Magna and they report that this sector of the market is particularly buoyant with strong demand from potential tenants and houses tending to let readily. Both sales and lettings departments are also able to draw on the expertise of the firm’s professional teams who offer advice on a range of property services.

Killens also operate Mendip Auction Rooms; based at Rookery Farm in Binegar. The auction rooms have two sales a month and quarterly sporting auctions. If you have items you wish to sell at auction please contact Gareth Wasp on 01749 840770 to arrange a free no obligation home visit.


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Brents now offer vehicle rental BRENTS of Bishop Sutton is a long-established, family run business situated in the heart of the beautiful Chew Valley, offering a range of services, including Class IV MOT tests, repairs, servicing, diagnostics, tyres and self-drive hire. The business started in 1930, when Frederick Ernest Brent bought Forge Garage and started car servicing and repairs. He passed the garage on to his sons, Michael and Jeffrey, and since 1993 it has been in the capable hands of Michael’s sons, Phillip and Richard. They have seen some changes through the years, including road haulage, coach hire, and serving petrol. Now they can proudly add vehicle rental to the list. They believe in providing excellent customer service and take pride in doing just that and are confident you won’t find a friendlier, more efficient independent garage. Philip and Richard were very proud to have been included as one of only two independent workshops to be visited by a delegation of 15 Omani entrepreneurs on October 2nd, as part of a week-long training programme organised by Business West. The programme focused on creating an avenue for Omani SMEs in the automotive aftermarket sector to experience and learn from their British counterparts, assisting them in gaining experience and understanding of the processes and practices carried out by successful SMEs in Bristol, in the automotive industry. The Omani businessmen proved to be impeccable guests, evincing an enthusiasm and a thirst for knowledge. Richard was delighted to be the centre of attention once again

FOCUS ON CHEW VALLEY when great interest was shown in his racing career and he was able to show off his race car and recount anecdotes about his many wins to a captive and appreciative audience.

If you would like to find out more about their products and services, contact them on 01275 332569, or check out their new website, They have daily, weekend and weekly rates, and are more than happy to discuss longer term rentals as well.

Commercial Landscape Maintenance Ltd Specialising in commercial work across the whole of the south west of England.


Private hire 4, 6 and 8 seater vehicles – all using eco-friendly fuels. Long and short journeys to all destinations. School runs and account customers welcome

£10m site insurance – safe contractor registered

07831 825527 Established 1991


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Super support for Winford’s scarecrows THE second Winford Scarecrow trail turned out to be an even grander affair than the first one last year, with 112 scarecrows stretching across the Chew Valley as far as Wrington. Hundreds of people also attended the Scarecrow Fair at Winford School. Once again it was organised to raise money for Harvey Hext, aged seven, who suffers from Downs Syndrome and a rare childhood cancer. The fund to send him for possible treatment in the U.S. now stands at £155,000. His mum, Sarah, said: “He’s well at the moment and attending the village school with his brother and sister and the kids just seem to adore him.” Organiser, Sam Probert, said: “The response has been amazing, with businesses sponsoring scarecrows at the fair as well as having all those across the area, and we’ve had support from all kinds of groups, including brownies, girl guides and cubs.”

Taking tea in Winford

Laura Stratford, aged six, attended the Scarecrow Fair as a scarecrow PAGE 94 • MENDIP TIMES • NOVEMBER 2013

Organiser Sam Probert (left) with Sarah Hext and her twin sons Spencer and Harvey (right)

2013 Business winner – The Community Farm

Community involvement - Chew Valley School

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Cherry Tree blossoms

LISA Smith and her company, Cherry Tree Estates, seem well set to take advantage of the upsurge in the housing market, after opening an office in a prime location in the centre of Chew Magna. In just three years, her company has built an enviable reputation in the lettings market. Now Lisa feels the time is right to

move into house sales. Her office is where she used to work at one time with Chappell and Matthews on the High Street in Chew Magna. She also worked with C.J. Hole and Davis and Way during her 15 years in the estate agency business. She’s been joined by Lesley Roper, formerly with Davis and Way, who has been in estate agency for 20 years. Lisa said: “I always knew that I wanted to do house selling again, but wouldn’t be able to achieve this working from home, as I was. When the opportunity to secure as prime a location as this came up I knew I should take it. I firmly believe in giving a quality service at a fair price, I would love people to give us a call and put us to the test.”

Spotlight Stage School

WHEN the students of the Valley Spotlight Stage School suggested that they should create their own show, based on the weekly workshops that they do, Peter Wells who runs the school was overjoyed. He said: “The enthusiasm and the energy they are putting into the project has to seen to be believed. In fact the only way to see this mass carbon footprint is to buy a ticket soon before they all sell out.” We understand he not allowed to tell us what is in it, because it is a tightly guarded secret. However he did say: “All I can tell you is that it is very funny in places, and the acting, singing and dancing sequences are fantastic.” Some of the money raised will go to the Harvey Hext appeal.

Orchard House



Are you selling your property? Come and speak to our sales team to find out what we can offer you Expert advice – Great rates – Friendly staff

Call us on 01275 333200

The Students of the Valley Spotlight Stage School proudly present


‘IT’S OUR SHOW’ Totally created and performed by the students themselves. On Saturday 16th November at Temple Cloud Village Hall starting at 7.30pm. Tickets (£3 Adults, £1 under 16’s) available on the door or can be purchased in advance from 31 Woodcroft, Bishop Sutton, Bristol BS39 5XN. Cheques made payable to the Spotlight Stage School. Refreshments available. Profits to the Harvey Hext Appeal.

NO MOLE NO FEE Telephone 01275 332966

Chew Stoke

Comfortable self-catering and bed & breakfast accommodation

Ann Hollomon

01275 333143 MENDIP TIMES • NOVEMBER 2013 • PAGE 95

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Chew Valley Arts Trail

(l to r) Hazel Hillman, Jennifer Davidson, Sandra Nield and Helen Haines

George Tyler

Chris Walters

Natasha Clutterbuck

Helen Gordon PAGE 96 • MENDIP TIMES • NOVEMBER 2013

(l to r) Ann Elson, Mark Pearce and Amelia Sommer

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Flowers for Christmas


Keeping warm this winter

THERE are a lot of things to look forward to in winter, but the price of fuel probably isn’t one of them. And for those of us who like to choose environmentally friendly options when we can, cost can be a real concern. One local business, Winford Woodchip, has managed to keep prices down by reusing unwanted cordwood timber. The project started five years ago, when an independent tree surgeon began passing on logs to friends and family. Things are more organised now – the timber is seasoned and customers can choose between softwood and hardwood. And the Great British weather means that Winford Woodchip now supplies logs to families and business almost the whole year round.

YOU can now find Sweet Pea Floral Design at New Manor Farm Shop on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays, with owner Toni Moore ready to advise you. She started the business seven years ago from her home at Hinton Blewett, where she designs floral arrangements for weddings, anniversaries and all kinds of other events, as well as selling gifts and indoor and outdoor plants. At the moment she’s busy with Christmas wreaths and table centres and is now taking orders. She also offers a delivery service seven days a week. Toni, whose husband Ben works in finance at Bristol University, said: “I’ve just had a life-long love of flowers.” The couple have a six-year-old daughter, Katie.

Trust the experts

CHEW Valley Travel have over 100 years of travel experience and have visited some of the most wonderful places in the world – Africa, the Americas, Caribbean, Far East and Indian Ocean, to name but a few, as well as destinations right across Europe. Also specialising in cruises, having recently returned from trips with Fred Olsen and Silver Sea. So why look on Trip Advisor, when they have personal experience of the resorts and hotels? They are not like the internet – you have someone to discuss your holiday with – and they will try to match or better internet prices. There is a very special group departure next year – The Real Botswana from July 28th – August 8th, 2014. This will be a guided tour, staying in luxury meru style tents, for a minimum of six people and a maximum 15, visiting Moremi Game Reserve and Chobe National Park, as well as other wildlife havens.

Planning your wedding Let us plan your wedding abroad We can send you to the most wonderful destinations imaginable – Europe, the Far East, Indian Ocean, New York and many more Honeymoon – we can send your wedding guests a letter so they can pay towards your honeymoon. We can also arrange your hen or stag party at home or abroad with some lovely locations, from Butlins to weekend breaks in Majorca, spa weekends in Europe or, for the lads, gambling in Las Vegas!

Email us now on or telephone 01275 332211 or visit our website


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What’s new at the Valley Trading Post AFTER the excitement of the re-launch of the Valley Trading Post, in Chew Magna, they continue to dazzle their customers with new product lines including many new gifts, toys and jewellery lines as well as more luscious cosmetics and spa products. They have added many new gorgeous card ranges, including a range of specially

made ‘Chew Valley’ cards which are selling faster than they can order them. After years of searching and countless requests they have finally sourced a great line of natural quality nail varnishes as well as a new lower-priced organic make-up range. What may surprise a lot of people is that this independent rural retailer

carries one of the largest ranges of natural and organic make-up and toiletries in the whole Bristol and Bath area. The children’s section has more variety than ever, with something for all ages and budgets, including innovative new toys as well as the most popular traditional toys. Another new line, proving to be very popular, is their ‘Moon Estates’ gift packages.

After a lot of searching for new and interesting gifts for men, they are delighted with their new extended range to suit everyone. Their beautiful personalised bunting is selling rapidly so if you are interested in buying someone some special bunting, as a Christmas gift, order early to avoid disappointment. If you want to stay up-todate with what’s happening simply join their mailing list and they’ll keep you up-todate as well as sending some exclusive offers by email. If you haven’t seen the new shop now’s the time to take a look. If you mention the Mendip Times you will receive 10% off in November.

Peace of mind

CHEW Valley Alarms gained accreditation in 1996 and as approved installers they have worked with a wide range of clients. They are a local company using only their own fully employed and security screened engineers. The company has continued to grow on a year on year basis, providing an unrivalled reputation for the installation of a wide range of security products for residential and commercial clients. Each system utilises only the latest state-of-the-art technology, tailored to meet the needs of each installation, providing the ultimate defence for your property. All this is backed up with a full 365 day, 24hour, emergency helpline and call-out service. PAGE 98 • MENDIP TIMES • NOVEMBER 2013

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Stoke Inn is hub of the village

THE Stoke Inn, at Chew Stoke, is literally the hub of the village - it’s home to The Hub in The Pub, a partnership between the pub itself, Age UK B&NES, the council’s library service and Bath College Community Learning. So as well as an excellent selection of beers, wines and ciders, and both fine English and Indian cuisine, The Stoke houses the village library and hosts a whole range of other activities – it also has a handy fruit and veg stall, stocking produce from Bristol Fruit Market and local producers, which is now selling Christmas hampers. The pub itself is busy getting ready for Christmas, as well as organising a Mexican Night and a major darts tournament. Its Sunday carvery is very popular with some tables set around its two log fires, and it also offers airport parking,

with a chauffeur service. It has a pensioners’ club which meets twice a month and regular ladies’ coffee mornings. It’s currently planning a major refurbishment of its bed and breakfast accommodation. Activities at The Hub continue to grow, with the launch of The Lunch Bunch at The Stoke on October 31st and a whole series of gadget buster sessions in November, designed to encourage people to try out IT in all its forms. Plans for the New Year include courses on family history, local history and indoor winter bowls. Karen Lyne, Age UK B&NES’ new community development worker in the Chew Valley said: “I’m very excited about our plans. There’s already a lot of interest and we’re really keen to involve as many people from the local community as possible. We want them to help us spread the message about our activities and keep us informed about what people want to see happen at The Hub.”



DECEMbER 1ST – 24TH 2 courses £16.95 2 courses (children’s) £12.95 3 courses £19.95 3 courses (children’s) £15.95 STARTERS Tomato & Thyme Soup with croutons Home-made Pate with apricot chutney & toasted bread Roasted Pepper & Grilled Goats Cheese with pesto dressing A warm salad of Garlic Prawns with cucumber ribbon MAIN COURSES Roast Turkey stuffed with sausage meat, cranberries & basil served with chipolatas wrapped in bacon Mustard Rubbed Roast Beef with Yorkshire pudding Oven Baked Pork Loin with and Apricot and Stilton sauce Salmon Fillet with a smoked salmon & brandy cream sauce Wild Mushroom & Stilton Risotto topped with rocket Roasted Pork Loin with honey & mustard gravy All mains served with roasted potatoes & seasonal vegetables DESSERTS Christmas Pudding with brandy cream Mince Pies & whipped cream Cheesecake with fruit coulis Sticky Toffee Pudding with Bailey’s cream

Adults £39.95 • Children £17.50


1st prize £300 & trophy 2nd prize £100 & trophy beaten semi finalist £50 each Friday 8th November . . . Last 32 matches best of 3 sets • Friday 15th November . . . Last 16 matches best of 3 sets Friday 22nd November . . . Last 8 matches best of 3 sets Semi Finals and Finals played best of 5 sets £10 Per Player To Enter , Draw Takes Place 7.45pm on 8th November – all players required to be present by 7.30pm

All matches to be played in the function room where the bar will be open. To enter please leave your details and entry fee with John or Lee behind bar

STARTERS Chicken Liver Pate with apricot chutney & toasted bread Smoked Salmon and Prawns with a horseradish mayonnaise Wild Mushroom & Tarragon Soup, served with parmesan croutons Smoked Duck with a plum sauce, served on a rocket salad MAIN COURSES Traditional Turkey Crown stuffed with sausage meat, cranberries & basil Roasted Sirloin of Beef with a mustard and mushroom gravy Seabass fillets on a bed of green beans with a lemon & chive sauce Stilton, Fig & Rosemary Tart with a pepper coulis All mains served with roasted potatoes & seasonal vegetables DESSERTS Christmas Pudding with brandy cream Chocolate & Almond Torte with whipped cream Apple, Walnut & Cinnamon Crumble with custard A Selection of Cheeses & biscuits with chutney & grapes

A selection of traditional Mexican Fayre Wednesday 27th November • Pre-booking required

Coffee & Mince Pies

Bristol Road, Chew Stoke, Somerset BS40 8XE • Tel: 01275 332120 MENDIP TIMES • NOVEMBER 2013 • PAGE 99

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Valley Gardening in The Winter Do we shut down because it’s cold and freezing? Not likely!

In addition to trees, hedges etc we now design and build patios, decking, water features plus inside house maintenance, as well as jet cleaning house sides, patios, guttering cleaning and clearing, window cleaning (so good they sparkle) and hundreds of maintenance jobs around and in the house and garden. Telephone Peter Wells on 07449901602 for Gardening or Tony Wells on 07897437373 for Maintenance

Jane Norman

FOOT HEALTH PRACTITIONER SAC DIP Foot Health Practice SAC DIP Registered Nurse SRN CRB Nails cut, Corns, Callus, ingrowing nails For home visits please call:

Telephone: 01275 472498 Mobile: 07918 076182 Email:

Brock and Houlford Optometrists and Opticians

Eye Examinations, Sportvision, School Vision Assessments Spectacles, Contact Lenses, Family Eyecare.

33 High Street, Chew Magna, Bristol BS40 8PR Appointments 01275 332882

Tony Hucker TV Service – Sales – Rental

• • • • • •

Caring for our feet

AS two of the most-used parts of our bodies, our feet are often sadly neglected and forgotten. With 26 bones, 33 joints, 107 ligaments, 19 muscles and tendons, it is no wonder at the end of the day they can often ache, develop corns, callus, rough dry hard skin, and cracked heels. So now is the time to relax, put your feet up and allow them to be pampered. Jane Norman, of the Valley Mobile Foot Clinic, is a registered nurse and will look after your feet in the comfort of your own home.

A family business

IN 1877 Tom Wells moved his family from Patney in Wiltshire to Stoke Bishop in Bristol and quickly became a gardener with an excellent reputation for hard work and knowledge. In 1947 Bert Wells, Tom’s grandson started Wells Builders with his brother, in Bristol which quickly became one of the city’s well-respected construction companies. Now in the Chew Valley, Pete Wells, Bert’s son and Tom’s great grandson, along with his son Tony, have set up Valley Gardening and Maintenance, bringing all the knowledge and professionalism from decades of family firms into one new and fresh endeavour. The gardening covers all aspects of gardening from basic mowing, weeding and trimming to landscaping. The maintenance run by Tony not only outside of homes such as patio and decking construction, jet washing, house and window cleaning, but also inside including carpentry, plastering, tiling etc.

Charity cheque

Sky Local Experts Aerial Systems TV wall mounting Custom Installations Networking Signal Solutions

01275 332888 Unit 4, Fairseat Workshops, Chew Stoke BS40 8XF Open: Mon-Fri 9am-6pm and Sat 9am-12 noon CHEW Stoke Bowling Club’s Chairman’s and President’s day saw a cheque for £650 presented to Joanne Jenks from Diabetes UK, who received it with her twin daughters Elena and Natasha. They are pictured with John Nicholson, Robin Leach, Jane Keedwell and Richard Tovey. Details: Robin Leach 01275 332465 or email


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Anyone for squash?

FOCUS ON CHEW VALLEY Silver Street Chew Magna Bristol BS40 8RQ

Chew Magna’s best-kept secret. Tucked behind the church – a real find

e Queen’s Arms Christmas Menu 2013

CHEW Valley Squash Club enters two teams in the winter Bristol and District Men’s squash league and one in the mixed summer league. Last season they did well in their respective divisions. The teams are of a high standard and play their matches on Wednesday evenings. Team members are busy training for the coming season, as the photograph shows. The club is always keen to attract new members and the subscription allows members to get a reduction on the court costs of Chew Valley Leisure Centre. The club also runs internal boxes, competitions and an intervillage contest which is always great fun. Details: Jill Toman 01761 221925 or by email:

Chew Magna team

Roasted vine tomato & basil soup finished with mascarpone and parmesan croutons  Tempura king prawns On a bed of leaves with a plum sauce Pigeon, black pudding and pancetta salad with a red wine glaze  Roast breast of British turkey with bacon-wrapped sausages, stuffing and cranberry sauce Marinated lime and coriander salmon supreme with crayfish butter and buttered chive new potatoes Braised venison in a red wine sauce with shallots, bacon lardons and mushroom s Roasted aubergine stuffed with vegetable couscous and feta on a tomato and herb sauce All main courses are served with a selection of winter vegetables and roasted potatoes  Christmas pudding with brandy butter and cream Mulled wine winter berry cheese cake Chocolate orange profiteroles West Country cheeses and biscuits With an onion marmalade  Cafetiere coffee and mints 2 Course £19.95 3 Course £24.95 Served from 1st -23rd December except Sunday Minimum parties of 6 and a Maximum 0f 24 Jim & Jo Smith promise you a warm welcome

Pre-order only – minimum six maximum 24 December 1st – 23rd

TEL: 01275 332151

THERE have been changes in the last year at Chew Magna Post Office. The new sub-postmistress is Moira Sage, who works with a great team of staff, Denise, Tonia and Marie, offering faster, more efficient, friendly and knowledgeable service. Although many may feel the premises now seem much smaller, they are still able to stock useful, everyday items, such as Sellotape, printer paper, various kinds of envelopes, from letter size to parcels, packaging materials, general stationery for school or office purposes, and a variety of reasonably-priced greeting cards, suitable for most occasions. They have a photocopier and are agents for dry cleaning and shoe repairs. Feel free to go and have a look around – it’s surprising the things that you can find.

Chew Magna Post Office Moira, Denise, Tonia and Marie wish customers old and new a Merry Christmas. Please do support your local Post Office.

Tel: 01275 332430 MENDIP TIMES • NOVEMBER 2013 • PAGE 101

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Music in Churchill

Cello star returns to Wells Jamie Walton

The Ellipsis Wind Ensemble, three fine musicians, Robert Manasse, flute, Melanie Ragge, oboe, and Susanna Stranders, piano, will be appearing with Churchill Music! on Saturday December 7th at St. John the Baptist Church in Churchill. They will perform an original and varied programme of music ranging from Italian Baroque through Mozart, Faure to Puccini and beyond. Interspersed with the music, John Murray, formerly of Averys of Bristol, will introduce a special selection of wines and canapés. Tickets are £18.50, £16.50 for champions of Churchill Music! Details: Ursula Dornton 01934 852919 or email

INTERNATIONALLY-acclaimed cellist Jamie Walton is to make a rare concert appearance in Wells as part of the fundraising campaign to build a state-of-the-art performing arts venue in the city. The former Wells Cathedral School student is patron of the £9.4m Cedars Hall appeal by the Wells Cathedral School Foundation. The Cedars Hall project will provide specialist musicians and the community with a vital facility. Jamie will perform Elgar’s Cello Concerto with the school’s symphony orchestra on Saturday, November 16th at Wells Cathedral. The concert will also be a very personal event for Jamie. Due to family illness he had to leave Wells suddenly and never had the opportunity to perform a concerto piece which many specialist students do. So, more than two decades on, he returns to play the concerto he wanted to play as a teenager and to raise funds for Cedars Hall. Jamie won a scholarship to Wells Cathedral School in a period which he says remains at the soul of his music making and where his first inspirational cello teacher was Margaret Moncrieff. He continued his studies with William Pleeth and, with another scholarship, at the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester where he won the prestigious Pierre Fournier Prize. He is a member of the Worshipful Company of Musicians and was elected to the Freedom of the City of London when he performed for HRH The Prince of Wales. He has also recently been awarded a Foundation Fellowship by Wells Cathedral School for his outstanding contribution to music. The Wells Cathedral concert starts at 7pm. Tickets are £10-£20 and are available from the Cathedral box office on 01749 834483 or email:


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Get into the swing

THE Langford based 17-piece big band Mendip Swing is looking for trumpeters and trombonists to join them. The band plays a wide range of swing, Latin, rock and funk arrangements from the well-known big bands of the 1940s up to more modern charts and from well-known composers and arrangers. Once a month, the band is tutored by Bristol jazz legend, Andy Hague. The band’s remit is to allow all local musicians the opportunity of playing in a big band format on a regular or occasional basis. They welcome all players at rehearsals regardless of age or ability. Mendip Swing looks to play a small number of engagements each year, raising money for its chosen charity – Macmillan Cancer Support. Details: Richard (07710 626704) or email

Trad jazz in Nunney

NUNNEY Village Hall will resound to the sound of Trad Jazz on Saturday, November 9th, in the latest concert featuring New Orleans style jazz bands. There’ve been a series of similar events over the last four years, featuring the music that grabbed the nation in the 50s and early 60s, when the Hit Parade and juke boxes were full of this exciting music. The evening promises music, dancing, delicious food, a licensed bar and a warm and comfortable ambiance. Tickets at £8 are available from Nunney Spar and Nunney Café or call Norman Leater on 07979 935067.

Concert in Chew Magna


AS a prelude to the Christmas season, Chew Valley Choral Society will be performing one of the great works of the choral tradition – Haydn’s The Creation – on Saturday November 30th. The society, under its musical director David Bednall, will be singing this wonderful and enduring oratorio in St Andrew’s Church, Chew Magna at 7.30pm. Soloists Sophie Gallagher (soprano, pictured), Iain MacLeodJones (tenor) and Christopher Sheldrake (bass) all come from the Wells area. The organ will be played by Nigel Nash. Tickets (£10 – students and children £5) can be obtained from CVCS members, on the door or telephone 01275 333014. Wine will be available in the interval.

Choir is set for Paris

WINSCOMBE Community Choir has lots to celebrate. Not only are they off to do the opening Christmas show for Disneyworld, Paris, they have also just secured a partnership with Notaro Homecare, who are sponsoring the choir for the next two years. Choir director, Emma Worthy, said: “I am absolutely delighted that we are working in partnership with Notaro Emma Worthy pictured with Homecare.” Santalo Notaro Santalo Notaro said: “We are delighted to support Winscombe Community Choir, who in turn support so many worthwhile causes.” After the choir returns from Disney, Paris December is crammed with concerts starting at St. Mary Redcliffe, in Bristol, on December 7th, in aid of the Sue Ryder charity. On December 14th they have a concert at the Meeting House in Sidcot to support the Jessie May Trust, with some very special guests including local writer and broadcaster, Martin Evans, who will be MC for the evening. On December 17th, they will be singing carols at the Woodborough Inn, in Winscombe. The choir has grown rapidly to more than 120 singers and welcomes new members. Details:


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Christmas is coming

YOU know Christmas is approaching when you see Joyce Fielding (right) and Sally Burke setting up a table of Christmas cards on the High Pavement at Chew Magna. Each year they sell cards for St. Peter’s Hospice, Children’s Hospice South West and the Friends of the Bristol Children’s Hospital. They are pictured selling cards to Doris Davis.

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Magical shop

NEEDFUL Things of Castle Cary are now working on their 15th year of beautiful Christmas displays! Austrian decorations have been added this year, together with traditional reds, greens and golds and, of course, many unusual and fun themes fill the rest of this delightful store. Christmas gifts and wrapping are available for all the family and in their clothes section they have many snuggly accessories to complement their winter ranges. Look out for their amazing mechanical toys and stocking fillers – this is a truly magical shop and one not to be missed this season!

Brook Bank Shooting Ground Rodney Stoke, Cheddar BS27 3UJ

OPEN PRACTICE AVAILABLE Wednesday, Thursday & Friday 12:00-Dusk Saturday 11:00-Dusk • Sunday 10:30-15:00 14 English Sporting stands with Claymate system Coaching from £50ph • Snack bar

Everyone is Welcome!

Needful Things Bespoke flowers for any occasion. Get 25% off Christmas wreaths and bouquets if booked before 25th November quoting this magazine issue number.

‘Shooting Experience’ beginners package from £29.50pp – phone to book

Tel. 01749 871055

. . . for all the Magic of Christmas! 7 High Street + Castle Cary + Somerset BA7 7AN + 01963 351352

Contact Becky on 07765 892004 or Find us at or

A Christmas Gift with a difference!

Would you like to try this?

For a gift with a difference take a drive out with our magnificent Friesian horses with the chance to take the reins! Gift vouchers available

Contact Nicky or Mike Lyons on: 01761 462250 / 07889 976498

Blagdon Horse Drawn Carriages MENDIP TIMES • NOVEMBER 2013 • PAGE 105

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Priston Festival

Photograph by Richard Bottle

PRISTON Festival has been running for six years now and the event is getting a reputation for booking good quality bands, who love playing on the open air stage right in the centre of the village, with other concerts in the church and the village hall. This year people came from all over the area to listen to the wide variety of music and to enjoy Morris dancing, the children’s art project, a talk about the Romans in Somerset, craft stalls, ice cream, workshops and a variety of interesting food. The organisers want to thank sponsors and volunteers and are already planning next year’s festival, scheduled for September 19th – 24th.

The Buffalo Gals

Massed Morris dancers

A music workshop

The Drystones from Priddy

Maids of the dance


An appreciative audience


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Jacksons Fencing – news, topical treats and more . . .

Dreaming to chase away the winter blues. Am I alone in using this strategy to get through the worst of the winter months?

I KNOW it’s only November but the dark mornings and evenings are closing in alarmingly fast. It feels like there’s no escape, especially now the clocks have gone back. It seems like we are quite literally “locked in” for the next few months – it is dark when you get up and normally dark before you are home in the evening too. We all develop ways of coping with the lack of light, for some it may be really getting in to the spirit of Christmas (apologies for mentioning the C word when it’s not even December yet!) and going all out to make it the best Yuletide celebration ever. For others researching and booking next year’s holiday can chase the winter blues away, or if you are lucky, actually going on holiday and getting some precious winter sun, is definitely up there on the list! As ways of coping, these can work well, but they can be over all too quickly. So here’s my tip for something that can last a bit longer – plan a project to tackle once the weather improves. I’m talking outdoor or garden projects, because that’s my thing. Part of the beauty of this sort of planning is visualising the stages and end result of your project that you can indulge in. You can pick a part of your garden that you would like to transform. Picture it cleared of clutter and weeds, and see it replanted with various different plants/shrubs, or paved, or decked. Imagine what else would work there, some kind of structure? Maybe a pergola,

The Retreat is a classy nook to relax in with Jacksons Venetian panels giving it an attractive contemporary look






Enter the free prize draw and be in with a chance to win one of our very popular wheelie bin stores, or £150 of Jacksons vouchers. Simply log on to your local page, address below and follow the easy instructions on how to enter. The draw closes 31.12.13. To enter go to:

conservatory, summerhouse, or some trellis or fencing. It’s a bit like virtual gardening. You can try out ideas in your imagination and then if the idea works start doing some real time planning, measuring up and costing out. Another way to make this work for you is finding something that inspires you as the starting point for your project. Research garden magazines, brochures and of course the web. Here’s a possible candidate, our new Retreat shelter is a very attractive nook for relaxing in. The standard Retreat (pictured here) is a modest size and could easily fit into most gardens. It even has the option of polycarbonate sheeting on the roof to give you some protection from showers. You can imagine what outdoor furniture you would put in it, down to the colour of the cushions and throws, and even plan the planting and other accessories around it. With imagination and some planning through the wintertime, you can be ready to put your plans into action as soon as conditions allow. And with the added benefit of visualising your sunny, spring project coming to fruition it will help to chase the dreariness of winter away.

SPECIAL OFFER . . . Just a quick mention about our Oct/Nov special offer which is free delivery on gates, details are on your local page, along with info on the new Retreat shelter to: bathlocal LOUISE TOMLIN


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As energy costs rise, keeping your home and workplace warm while saving money can be hard. Süka can help. Süka Solar provide low-energy, highefficiency, clean and greener heang that’s simply and easily controlled, room by room.

It takes just 15 minutes of electricity to provide up to 60 minutes of healthy, radiant heat. It’s guaranteed for 15 years, and it’s made in Germany.

Eco-friendly solution

INNOVATION in building materials has historically been slow but an ever-increasing requirement for more sustainable and eco-friendly products has led to some interesting developments. SUDSCAPE porous paving falls into this category in that it meets the need to prevent rainwater run-off, at the same time making use of recycled materials. Planning authorities do not require a planning application for new or replacement driveways that are constructed from porous materials. SUDSCAPE meets this requirement using visually attractive resin bound natural aggregates. The twin layer SUDSCAPE system uses 30mm of crushed recycled resin bound rubber, below 20mm of resin bound natural aggregate. The system is durable, low maintenance and can withstand vehicle loadings of up to 4 tonnes. It is suitable for pathways, driveways and parking areas. Details: TMS Eco Surfacing Ltd for free consultation and quote on 01373 813655.

Ancient and modern

HEATING a 16th century listed building in Long Sutton, Somerset is one of the latest projects for innovative heating company Süka. The building, used by the Quakers, was previously heated by two 10.5 kw gas powered heaters and much of this heat was lost through the roof space where there was no insulation. The Friends were concerned to reduce the carbon footprint of the building and say Suka offered the perfect solution, offering effective heating which is environmentally friendly. Suka’s system generates radiant heat, which warms up the walls and furniture of a room and these too store the heat as well as the building itself. This means only top-up heat is required and Suka says studies have shown that 15 minutes of electricity will give 60 minutes of warmth. The Friends said: “Although the initial set-up costs were similar to those of replacing the gas heaters, because we had to insulate the loft and roof spaces, we know we’re going to save money in the long term. It’s noticeably warmer and we don’t need to have the heating on all the time now.” The building is now heated with three 2.5kw heaters, with a radio controlled unit for the main meeting room. There is a 1.5kw heater in the entrance hall and a 2kw unit in separate children’s building.



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G Seasoned logs for all types of stoves and open fires G 1m3, 2m3 or 3m3 loads delivered G All logs barn stored and dry G Free local delivery

Adrian & Rachel T: 01934 710641 M: 07766 305697

JB Hardwood Flooring Independent timber floor fitter for the South West

0 7 97 6 7 63 4 4 2

We will supply and fit an AGA Wenlock Classic Multi Fuel Stove/Woodburner with 10m of liner and all the connections for a staggering £1499 inclusive of VAT, to your existing opening and hearth dependent upon site survey to confirm legality. (Builders work to opening or works to hearth not included). Visit for the exceptional value on woodburners

Braysdown Works Braysdown, Peasedown St John Bath BA2 8LL

Give us a call on 01761


Opening Hours 8am – 5.30 pm Monday to Friday • Evenings by appointment


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Wyre Forest from Adam Carpets 80:20 wool twist in plain and heather shades £25.95/m2 (was £29.95/m2) Until end of November 2013

Get the kitchen of your dreams

DREAM Doors are now open in Congresbury. They are an established door replacement and bespoke kitchen supplier who have built up an outstanding reputation nationwide. Visit the new showroom where you can see a huge choice of doors, worktops, sinks, taps and appliances. Whether you require a simple door swap, a more extensive facelift, or a complete replacement kitchen, Dream Doors offers a solution. “When people call into our showroom to talk to us they can have complete confidence in our personal local service, our national brand, and our quality product,” say Colin and Camilla Abbiss, the business owners. “We can offer a free quote for a kitchen tailored to your individual requirements.” If you would like to turn your dreams into reality call Dream Doors on 01934 550085 or visit the new showroom at 5, The Precinct, Congresbury, BS49 5JG. See their special opening offer.

Weston Garden Machinery Garden Machinery Specialist

Kasbah Stripe from Adam Carpets 80:20 wool nylon available in seven colours £29.95/m2 (was £34.95/m2) Until end of November 2013

Charnwood Island range of stoves from 5Kw to 16Kw. FEATURES: • Cleanwash Air Technology • Quattroflow air management system • Converting grate

Hutton Garden Centre, Banwell Road, Hutton, Weston-super-Mare, North Somerset BS24 9UB

Tel: 01934 813261 PAGE 110 • MENDIP TIMES • NOVEMBER 2013

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We have a team of professional experienced installers who have been with us for a good number of years offering a friendly and helpful service.

Techniglaze Ltd was founded by its current Managing Director Nick Candy in 1984 where it has since grown to directly employ 30 local members of staff.

We implement a non-pressurised sales service where we can offer help and advice and tailor your project to your individual requirements.

The company has expanded whilst maintaining its family orientated roots. We specialise in Aluminium and PVCu products for both Commercial and Domestic Applications, the majority of which are made in our own factory using modern manufacturing techniques. Telephone: 01761 417654 • Facsimile: 01761 417207 • email:


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Is re-homing the answer?

AS autumn turns to winter it is a cruel fact that there will be many more cases of neglect and suffering of horses and ponies around the country. It has been a difficult couple of years for horse owners with rising costs of feed and hay, coupled with the general recession and With CELIA less expendable income in the average family GADD leaving many families struggling to feed their families let alone their pets. Unfortunately this has meant that selling the “average” horse and pony is more difficult, there are many more in the market for the buyer to choose from, and this has seen an increase in abandonment and most of the equine charities are full to the rafters already. A new initiative which is trying to tackle and help this situation is the Horses4Homes charity which has recently been awarded £15,000 from the British Equestrian Federation. The subsidy comes through HOOF which is the BEF’s participation programme aimed at encouraging people to be able to ride more regularly. “This is a great way for people who have the right skills and resources to get closer to owning a horse in a fully supported environment,” said Maggie Still, head of participation at the BEF. The partnership’s goal is to re-home 200 horses over time; they have already re-homed 140 but about half of them were unsuitable for riding. All the animal charities have raised concerns over horses being sold “online” through websites with horses often going for meat or just going to totally inexperienced owners who have no proper facilities. Horses4Homes have a very strict online application process which means that horses cannot be resold and a bespoke contract means any flouting of the rules could end up in court. Rebecca Evans who runs the charity explains: “We screen both sides and if people aren’t transparent we will reject them. Applicants have to pay £10 to register, answer 44 questions, verify

November 2013 show dates Saturday 2nd Unaffiliated show jumping at Stockland Lovell Manor, Fiddington Sunday 3rd Mini show jumping at Stockland Lovell Manor, Fiddington Wednesday 6th Higher unaffiliated evening show jumping at Badgworth Arena, Axbridge British Dressage at Stockland Lovell Manor, Fiddington Thursday 7th Mendip Bridleways and Byways (MBBA) AGM, The Thatched Cottage, Shepton Mallet. 7pm followed by a finger


phone numbers and permit home checks — an unscrupulous buyer won’t go through that.” Similarly, the seller has to answer detailed questions, and provide passport numbers and vet details, to allow the horse’s full history to be assessed. “There are many misguided people out there,” added Rebecca, citing someone who applied to keep a thoroughbred in her back garden. “We aim to make the re-homing process safe and less stressful for the horse and owners.” Owning a horse is real responsibility and everything should be taken into consideration before launching into buying or loaning one. The facilities where it is to be kept should be fully assessed especially to find out what the turn out etc is like in winter as well as in summer as it is important that horses do get adequate exercise and food all year round. The budget for keeping the horse should include the lack of grazing that is often available mid-winter and also take into consideration the odd unexpected but sometimes very costly vet’s bill, and of course regular farrier visits and worming etc. Most dedicated horse owners try not to work out exactly what the cost of keeping their equine partner is per annum but for those starting out it is important that you realise exactly what is involved and go into it with your eyes open. Having said all that, there is nothing better than building up a relationship with these noble and gentle creatures and the benefits of horse ownership make the efforts worthwhile on the whole.

buffet (£2 a head) and tack sale (£5 a table). Ffi: 01749 831276 or Thursday 7th – Sunday 10th BSJA November Dazzler competition at The Hand Equestrian Centre, Davis Lane, Clevedon Saturday 9th British Dressage at Stockland Lovell Manor, Fiddington Wednesday 13th Lower unaffiliated evening show jumping at Badgworth Arena, Axbridge Thursday 14th Clear round show jumping at The Hand

Equestrian Centre, Davis Lane, Clevedon Wednesday 20th BSJA Seniors at the Hand Equestrian Centre, Davis Lane, Clevedon Higher unaffiliated evening show jumping at Badgworth Arena, Axbridge Saturday 23rd Unaffiliated show jumping at The Hand Equestrian Centre, Davis Lane, Clevedon Tuesday 26th British Dressage at The Hand Equestrian Centre, Davis Lane, Clevedon Wednesday 27th Lower unaffiliated evening show jumping at Badgworth Arena, Axbridge

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Best ever, say festival riders

New classroom at HorseWorld

An early start for the MBBA team; chairman Cherry Lawson, ride organiser Harriet Ray, Michael Eavis (with grandson George), Ginnie Jones and some of the 223 riders

COUNCILLOR Neil Butters, chairman of Bath & North East Somerset Council (B&NES) and Lee Mears, former Bath and England rugby player were invited to animal welfare charity HorseWorld to unveil a new classroom and boot Room for the charity’s discovery courses thanks to a grant from the children’s charity, Wooden Spoon. HorseWorld launched their discovery courses four years ago bringing rescued horses together with young people to promote emotional growth and learning. Over 400 students have undertaken the programme.

A TOTAL of 223 riders set off on the 11-mile Glastonbury Festival Fun Ride organised by the Mendip Bridleways and Byways Association. Michael Eavis once again very kindly opened up Worthy Farm at Pilton to enable MBBA to raise funds for its aims and neighbouring landowners were also generous in opening up their land and farmers kindly ushered cows to safer pastures. There were few, if any, closed gates and riders made good time through the fields, orchards and bridleways of East Pennard and beyond. The lead rein, three-mile route also proved very popular, with riders as young as three taking part. This took riders past the pyramid stage, the pirate galleon, the standing stones and the dragon field. A lead rein route is always offered at MBBA rides to enable the riders of the future to enjoy the fun of a grown up event. Ginnie Jones, MBBA secretary, said: “Everyone agreed that this had probably been one of the best MBBA rides ever. Such a huge event can only go ahead with the hard work and help from a solid team of stewards who were on hand to direct and reassure along the route and at the venue. Sincere thanks to them and also to all the landowners, especially Mr Eavis, without whom this event would not have been possible.”

Lee Mears with Discovery students

For more information about MBBA events, visit:

Top show planned

THE Westcountry Equine Fair will be held at Westpoint in Exeter on Saturday December 7th and Sunday December 8th, and promises to be an action-packed two days, with an excellent equestrian shopping village, celebrities and fabulous demonstrations. International riders Hannah Biggs and Mary King will be at the show, which will see the return of some old favourites – stallion parades; pony club horse and hound challenge; and the Junior Show Jumping competition. Details: or call 01749 813899


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A riding ambition

THREE friends from Somerset have combined their love of horses with their own individual career skills to launch a range of products which could revolutionise horse welfare. In every sport, equipment has evolved to help talent unleash its best performance but sports involving animals – and in this case horses – have seen only stunted evolution by comparison over the decades. That is, until now. Pro-Motion Equine spotted the anomaly and set out to not only play catch-up, but to thrust horse sport technology into the future. Starting with horse racing and using its experts in podiatry and saddlery, studying physiology of the animal in race conditions using thermography, the team designed a range of saddle orthotic pads. The pressure-relief pads are modelled scientifically to distribute weight evenly across the horse’s spine and withers. The intention was simple: relieving pressure points on the spine and scapula, spreading load, would allow greater comfort and thus improve functionality, gait and efficiency. In short, a comfortable horse can relax, can stretch further and can perform better. Lorraine Curtin-Blair, one of three founders in Pro-Motion Equine, said: “Sounds simple, but achieving excellence on that foundation was not and many months have drawn on in reaching optimum results in the laboratory and in gait trials. The latest round of those trials has proved exceptional with chosen racetrainers now enjoying the secret opportunity and pleasing us with

Jockeys in Abu Dhabi using Pro-Motion equipment

Relax . . . the pressure's off Contact us at: Tel: 01823 669745

Lorraine, Julia and Paola at Garrett Saddlers in Draycott

hugely positive feedback both here in the UK and Ireland.” Although primarily aimed at the specialist market, the pads can now be used by any horse owner as Promotion Equine has developed pads for jumping, polo, event, dressage and everyday riders. Pro-Motion Equine is run by Lorraine, from Theale, who has a background in business and marketing, bench saddler and saddle consultant Julia Garrett, owner of Garretts saddlery in Draycott, and Paola Fletcher a podiatrist from Wellington. The team have combined their knowledge and skills and love of horses with the aim of establishing Pro-motion Equine as an recognised international brand. The pads – designed in Draycott, manufactured in a laboratory in Devon and in Street have already attracted a big following in Europe, the Middle East, Kenya, the Untied States and Ireland ,with the team visiting Dubai next month to promote the range. Pro-Motion has sponsored its first jockey (flat racer John Lawson), is supporting the British Young Dressage rider Immie Jones, event riders Alexander Bragg and Jo May as well as working with Cannington College’s equestrian department, and many of the UK and Ireland’s top race trainers. Julia said: “I am so proud to see our pad systems get to this stage. Clinical trials are ongoing but the results today speak for themselves; horses using our products are more comfortable, perform better and more importantly enjoy what they are doing because they are comfortable under saddle.” Paola added: “All three of us are extremely passionate about our venture. It has become a massive part of our lives and we are determined to make it a success.”

Feed and supplements stockist.

Retail clothing both horse and human.

Full saddlery with extensive saddle stock for all equestrian sports and specialist saddle fitting service. Back Lane, Draycott, BS27 3TS


Tel: 01934 742367

Flat jockey John Lawson is sponsored by Pro-Motion

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Nicholls to target Badger Ales Day?

WINCANTON Racecourse stages its richest day of the season on Saturday, November 9th when it hosts the Badger Ales Chase Day. Top trainer Paul Nicholls, from Ditcheat, traditionally targets the £60,000 contest with some hopeful contenders. The Badger Ales Trophy is the highlight of the six-race card which historically attracts a bumper crowd of racegoers. Wincanton is investing £500,000 over three years in the track, coupled with enhanced prize money and new features to make a day at the races even more attractive to spectators. Wincanton is part of the Jockey Club and racecourse general manager Steve Parlett said: “The Jockey Club already puts every penny of its profits back into British racing and our increased prize money, coupled with our long-term re-investment into Wincanton Racecourse ensures that we lead the field in rural racing.” He added: “We Wincanton is hoping improvements will are delighted that attract even more spectators Bathwick Tyres has agreed a three-year renewal for our February showcase – the Bathwick Tyres Kingwell Hurdle. Associated with companies like Bathwick Tyres, Hall and Woodhouse and Higos Insurance enable us to deliver value-for-money and enhanced customer experience – something that we will continue to build on.” The Philip Hobbs-trained Al Alfa in action


Paul Nicholls donated copies of the annual guide to his yard to the Henstridge branch of Riding for the Disabled at the opening meeting of the season at Wincanton. Paul is pictured with Tessa Woodhouse, Sue Young and Anna Hales from the RDA.

Rachel’s royal appointment

BRIDLEWAYS campaigner Rachel Thompson couldn’t resist showing this royal horse the MBE she received for her work. Rachel, from Priddy, was presented with the honour by Her Majesty the Queen at Buckingham Palace. Rachel, Project and Development Manager of the Trails Trust, said: “It was an amazing day. I said to the horse: ’it’s for bridleway creation mate, pity you can’t use them but come on holiday if you like!’” G As Mendip Times was being published, Rachel was due to give evidence at a public inquiry into disputed plans to upgrade a footpath to a bridleway at Upper Vobster, near Mells.


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Squash players feel the squeeze as gym expands

TWO squash courts at South Wansdyke sports centre in Midsomer Norton are to be converted into a new fitness suite and exercise class extension to meet demand. One further court will remain at the centre, run by Aquaterra on behalf of Bath and North East Somerset Council. The company says it believes the single court will meet players’ requirements. The £100,000 project will see the courts converted into one large exercise studio with new equipment including treadmills, exercise bikes, cross trainers, rowers, steppers, and light resistance machines to cope with increased demand. The current fitness suite will house Somer Health and Strength Club’s resistance and strength equipment. Access for disabled people will also be improved. The work should be completed by early next January. Councillor David Dixon, Cabinet Member for Neighbourhoods, said: “By improving the facilities at South Wansdyke Sports Centre, the council is aiming to support an increase of membership that will ultimately improve the health and fitness of local people. “Although the new facilities will replace two of the squash courts, there will still be one available for use that Aquaterra believe will cope with demand.”

Riding the waves

JAMES Bartlett from Moorlinch confirmed his position in the top 10 of world water skiers, finishing sixth in the World Waterski Racing Championships in Tenerife, helping Great Britain win second place in F2. He’s pictured (centre) with his teammates Damian Hopkins (left), from Glastonbury, and Mark Anderson, from Chard.


200 take on seven

Standing room only at the starting point on a narrow lane in Mells

A TOTAL of 200 runners tackled this year’s challenging Mells Scenic 7 race around the village and surrounding countryside – the first time that the race entry limit was reached. The course was comprised of roughly two thirds trail running and a third of paths and minor roads. It started in Mells and took runners through the villages of Great Elm and Buckland Dinham before returning to the village. Race director Jacqui Betts said runners came from across Somerset, Dorset and even from Bristol.

The race gets underway

Not just for boys!

CASTLE Cary Rugby Club has been working closely with local secondary schools and the RFU to get more girls involved in the sport. The club now has its own under-13s team and will soon be entering a county “beginners tournament” with other clubs who are also involved in the initiative. Other local clubs also recruiting under-13s girls are Gordano, Mendip Merlins (Cheddar and Winscombe), Minehead, Bath and Weston Hornets. The south west division of the RFU says it is delighted with the response from schools and clubs in the region. Meanwhile Wells RFC has launched an under-18s girls’ team. The Wells Angels are due to play their first match on Sunday, November 3rd against the North Devon Vixens. If anyone wishes to join the Castle Cary under-13s, they should turn up at the club on any Friday evening at 6.30pm. Club secretary Viv Armson said: “Rugby is not just for boys! It’s a guaranteed fun session.”

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Corey is a high flyer

WRITHLINGTON School student Corey Walkes will become one of the youngest members of the Great Britain Junior Trampolining Squad when it competes in the 22nd FIG Trampoline Gymnastics World Age Group Competition 2013 being held in Bulgaria in November Corey, 12, trains five times a week with the High Flyers Trampoline Club at Kings Fitness and Leisure Centre in Cheddar and at the Bath University Sports Training Village. Corey is coached by High Flyers International High Performance and Head Coach, Sue Bramble who has, during her career, coached many national and international junior and senior medalists. Corey said: “I have been training so hard for this opportunity and it is now paying off. It is hard work but I am dedicated to being the best I can be. I hope to make everyone who is supporting me to compete for my country proud.” Corey had to make some hard choices: to compete at this level meant he has decided to put his beloved rugby training on hold. He added: “I haven’t been able to go back to play at Bath Rugby's Junior Under 13s this season as the chances of injury are just too high, but my team mates have all been wishing me luck!” Competing at the highest international level for his age does have its financial implications. The family’s petrol costs alone have trebled in the past six months driving him around the country! However, his parents, Richard and Pippa Walkes, said: “We are exceptionally proud of our son. To compete for Great Britain at just 12 is a massive achievement! When you see how much he loves his sport it is very rewarding to see him achieving. We know this will be a fantastic experience for him and being with the rest of the GB squad will only further his development as a top class junior trampolinist.” The family has been helped by the school’s Learning to Lead fundraising team, which was established last year by Assistant Head Mark Bridges to organise and facilitates events throughout the school to raise money for charity. The students have already raised more than £5,000 for selected charities. This year the team decided that although they will still donate and raise money for charities they wanted to do things a little differently and when they heard about Corey’s success they awarded him £1,000 towards the £2,000 cost of competing in the event. Year 9 student Josie Lee said: “We were so inspired by his story. For someone so young to achieve something so great is amazing. We all knew straight away that Corey would be our first candidate. It’s quite cool to think we are sponsors of a Team GB athlete!” Head Teacher Mark Everett said: “We have some truly spectacular students, not only do they achieve great things but the level of support offered to each other is incredible.”

Sports awards launched


BATH and North East Somerset Council has launched its annual Chairman’s Sports Awards to recognise the achievements of sports people, volunteers and coaches. Now in their ninth year, the awards will this year feature six new categories including one for creating an Olympic, Paralympic or Special Olympic legacy. Authority chairman Neil Butters said: “Bath & North East Somerset Council is committed to help everyone have the opportunity to participate in sports and enjoy a healthy lifestyle. “We hope that anyone who has been inspired by the devotion of others towards sporting activities in their community will put their name forward and give them the recognition that they deserve.” Individuals, sports clubs, schools, colleges and community groups are invited to make nominations for the Chairman’s Sport Awards 2014 in categories including: Young Volunteer in Sport, Volunteer in Sport, Participation Coach of the Year and Sports Club of the Year. All award nominees will be invited to a civic reception and presentation next March. Anyone wishing to find out more about the awards and make a nomination can visit: Alternatively, call the council’s Sport and Active Lifestyles Team on 01225 396429 or email The deadline for nominations is 12noon on Friday, February 28th.

COUNTRY CLOTHING & GUN SHOP Major brands including:

And many others stocked

Southfield Sporting, Southfield House, Whatley, Frome, BA11 3JY Twitter @southfieldsport

836 339 013O73 pening Times:

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Crash mars rally

Cycle to Santiago


Nigel crossing the Pyrenees

Jamie Harris and co-driver Sean Cox (car 32), from the WSM Motor Club, wait at the start of Stage One

THE Regency Stages Rally went ahead in a shortened version after five spectators were hurt when they were hit by a car which left the track. Three stages of the scheduled 10-stage event at the Royal Bath and West Showground at Shepton Mallet were cancelled after the incident. The crash happened during Stage Two of the rally, organised by the Weston-super-Mare Motor Club. The Dorset and Somerset Air Ambulance was called to the scene and police accident investigators sealed off part of the track.

A damaged back axle put paid to the hopes of Dave Phillips and Tim Bagg, seen here at Turn One

MIDSOMER Norton Rugby Club president Nigel Rowles has completed a near-2,000 kilometre charity cycle ride from Midsomer Norton to Santiago de Compostela in North West Spain. The keen cyclist decided to set out on the adventure to mark his retirement from business. He was raising money for the Alzheimer’s Society and for an appeal by the rugby club to buy more land to expand its training and playing areas at its ground at Norton Down. Nigel was met in St Malo by a friend and together they cycled to Santiago, following as closely as possible the west coast Pilgrim’s Way. Nigel said: “The weather was very kind to us on the whole, thank goodness. The bike was superb, not even a puncture.” The cathedral of Santiago de Compostela

This Ford Escort Mk2 finished in 16th place

Trevor Martin’s Subaru Impreza in action PAGE 118 • MENDIP TIMES • NOVEMBER 2013

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Super gala is fantastic – beat Multiple Sclerosis!

WELLS Film Centre is to stage a special gala screening of Saving Mr. Banks in November in aid of the Multiple Sclerosis Society. The film – certificate PG and starring Emma Thompson and Tom Hanks – tells the story of PL Travers, creator of Mary Poppins, and her struggle with Walt Disney to have the musical adaptation of her book made on her terms. The screening takes place on Friday, November 29th, the day of the film’s UK release. Tickets are £12 and include a glass of wine or juice. Doors open at 6.30pm with the drinks reception taking place before the film is shown at 7.30pm. A raffle will be held on the night. Tickets are available from Wells Cinema in person or over the phone (01749 673195) or from The George Inn, Croscombe, as well as online at

Quilt Show

ONE of the stars of the hit BBC series The Great British Sewing Bee, Stuart Hilliard, will be among the special guests at this year’s West Country Quilt Show being staged at the Royal Bath and West showground in November. Stuart, who won a place in the nation’s affections as one of the contestants in the TV competition, is a quilt designer and maker who writes a regular column in Popular Patchwork magazine. He will be on the Lady Sew and Sew stand, signing the book that accompanies the Great British Sewing Bee series, displaying his latest quilts and talking about his favourite patchwork products and his newly acclaimed status as a celebrity. This is the second year for the acclaimed West Country Quilt Show, attracting exhibitors and visitors from all over the country. It’s staged at the showground at Shepton Mallet on Thursday 28th, Friday 29th and Saturday 30th November, with something for every level of patchwork and quilt enthusiast from beginners to specialists in the craft.








Mendip Gliding Club is located near Cheddar and offers a variety of Glider Flying packages including Trial Lesson Vouchers (from £35), or regular membership and “Fixed Price to Solo” options. The Club is open all year on Thursdays, Saturdays and Sundays. Suitable for ages 12 upwards – no upper limit! Fly with BGA rated instructors in dual control gliders. For further information please visit our website at or contact the Club Secretary on 01761 232080

Princes Road, Wells, BA5 1TD


Friday 30th October

Friday 1st November

Friday 8th November

Thor – The Dark World 2d & 3d (Cert. Tbc) Philomena (12a) 42 (12a) Gravity 2d & 3d (12a)

Friday 15th November The Butler (12a)

Thursday 21st November The Hunger Games: Catching Fire (12a)

Friday 29th November Saving Mr. Banks (PG) Free Birds 2d & 3d (Cert. Tbc)

G Book in person G Online 24/7 G Over the ’phone: 01749 673195



To win yourself one of THREE pairs of free tickets to this year’s show. Simply answer this question: Who is The Great British Sewing Bee Star who will be making an appearance at the show? Answers to: West Country Quilt Show Competition, Mendip Times, Coombe Lodge, Blagdon, BS40 7RG. The first three correct answers drawn will win the tickets. The closing date is November 14th. The editor’s decision is final. MENDIP TIMES • NOVEMBER 2013 • PAGE 119

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T h e


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M e n d i p

Friday November 1st Open Mic Night at Redhill Village Club from 8pm. Hosted by Jerry Blythe. All welcome, free entry. Church Road, Redhill, BS40 5SG. Contact 01934 862619. Friday Bingo Nights start at Writhlington Village Hall ‘eyes down’ at 7.45pm. Entry 50p, refreshments available. Enquiries: 01761 439132. Halloween Party at The White Hart, Cross, with live music from Bristol’s finest rock covers band Le Boolaheads! Saturday November 2nd Tudor Weaving demonstration at the Somerset Rural Life Museum, Glastonbury, BA6 8DB. Have a go at weaving, 10am-4pm, free. Christmas Craft Fayre and Soup Lunch in Ston Easton Village Hall (just off A37 turning by bus shelter) 10am –2pm. Lots of stalls to do your shopping early, then relax with coffee, cake or a soup lunch. Details: 01761 241428. Kingston Seymour Market, 10am – noon in the village hall. A wide variety of goods available. Why not come along and have a look around and you may find some presents ready for Christmas! Craft Fair, organised by the Friends of Somerset Carers Network. Wells Town Hall, 09.30am-4pm. All funds raised go to support carers of mental health patients in Somerset. All crafts have either been made by carers or are being sold by carers. Refreshments available. Sunday November 3rd Timsbury Horticultural Society Craft Fair at Conygre Hall, Timsbury, 10am-4pm. Refreshments available all day. Details: 01761 414644. Autumn campfire celebration, Radford Mill Farm, near Timsbury, BA2 0QF. 2pm-9pm. Marking the changing of the seasons with a gathering around the campfire. Kid-friendly. Apple bobbing, craft activities, pumpkin carving, storytelling and more. Musicians welcome. Free entry (car parking £2). Monday November 4th Congresbury Branch of the Royal British Legion meets at the War Memorial Hall at 7pm. New members will be very welcome. There will be a short service outside the War Memorial Hall on 11th November – Remembrance Day. Afterwards a warming cup of coffee or tea will be available in the hall. Tuesday November 5th “Musical and Cultural Life in Shakespeare’s England” – a DFAS presentation by Jeremy Barlow at the Westex Suite, Bath & West Showground, Shepton Mallet. Please contact Tony Lane on 01749 670652 if you wish to attend. Thursday November 7th Wells Evening Society, The History of Punch PAGE 120 • MENDIP TIMES • NOVEMBER 2013

T i m e s

and Judy, with Bertie Pearce, Wells Town Hall, 7.30pm. Saturday November 9th Rotary Quiz, WI Hall, Backwell, 7.30 for 7.45pm. Questions set by Nailsea & Backwell Rotary. BYO drinks and glasses. £6/head, tables of six. Tickets: John Glason, 01275 463969. Frome Society for Local Study, The Influence of Bath Architects on Frome, with Dr Amy Frost, Assembly Rooms, Frome, 2.30pm. St. Peter’s Hospice Christmas Bazaar at City Hall, Bristol, 10am-3pm. Christmas cards, decorations, jewellery, crafts, wine, cheese, preserves, cakes, plus knitwear, bric-a-brac and many other stalls. Details: 0117 9684 739. ‘Music from Vienna’ by Congresbury Singers at St Andrew’s Church, Congresbury at 7.30pm, followed by refreshments. Tickets £9 (inc. £1 for village defibrillator fund). Tickets on door or from Paul: 01275 878740. New Orleans style Jazz, 7.30pm, Nunney Village Hall. Dancing, delicious food from our New Orleans kitchen, licensed bar. Tickets £8, from Nunney café, Spar shop and Norman: 07979 935067. Details: Christmas Fayre, Centenary Celebrations, Writhlington Methodist Church, 10am – 1pm with Father Christmas. Farmers’ market, bazaar and parish café, 10amnoon at Brent Knoll Parish Hall. Details: 01278 760308. Curry & Quiz Night at Redhill Villlage Club – from 8pm. Bring a team with you, or just turn up on the night. £1 per person. Church Road, Redhill, BS40 5SG. Contact 01934 862619. Congresbury Book Sale, 9am – 1pm, War Memorial Hall. A wide selection of good quality books, jigsaw puzzles, dvds, cds and talking books. Wells Cathedral Oratorio Society concert, Wells Cathedral, tickets £10-£20 from cathedral box office on 01749 672773. The D Day Darlings, music and spirit of the wartime era, St. Michael’s Church, Brent Knoll, 7.30pm, tickets £8, under 14, £4 from Brent Knoll Post Office. Details: 01278 760225 or 01278 760308. Sunday November 10th Breabach, Scottish traditional music with a contemporary interpretation. Hornblotton Village Hall, BA4 6SF, 7pm. Food and soft drinks available. We’ve no licence, so BTO booze. Tickets £10 from 01963 240282 or Details: Tuesday November 12th “Late Antique Somerset – from Britannia Prima to Wessex”, a talk by Bob Smisson for Weston-s-Mare Archaeological & Natural History Society, 7.30pm at Victoria Methodist Church Hall, W-s-M, BS23 1XU. Visitors welcome £2.50

W h a t ’ s

The Rainbow Choir at Congresbury Over-60’s Club meeting, 2.30–4pm at Congresbury War Memorial Hall. Details: 01934 832004. Wednesday November 13th Wells Civic Society, Transition Wells – working towards energy efficiency – a talk on how we can save money and energy, and how historic buildings can be energy efficient,. 7.30pm in the Conference Room at Wells Museum, Cathedral Green, Wells. Saturday November 16th Craft Fair in aid of Children’s Hospice SW, 10 am–1 pm at Camerton Hall. Christmas gifts plus home-made cakes & refreshments. Art exhibition and craft fair at Midsomer Norton Social Club, featuring paintings by Roger Jones, and an opportunity to see the newly refurbished club, 10.30am–4pm. Fairtrade Fair & Fashion Show at Shipham Village Hall, 10am–4pm. Fashion Shows at 11am & 2pm. Clothes, crafts & Christmas gifts from around the world. Free entry. Refreshments, including lunch. All proceeds to Traidcraft Exchange. Enquiries: 01934 750533. Bleadon Village Market – 9am–12.30pm, BS24 0PG. Busy market with over 30 stalls. Crafts, local produce, bric-a-brac, plants and much more. Refreshments. Enq: 01934 812370, Bingo Night at Writhlington Village Hall ‘eyes down’ at 7.45pm. 50p entry fee, refreshments available. Enquiries: 01761 439132. Bobbin lace-making demonstration by experts. Radstock Museum. The demonstrations complement the current Stitch in Time exhibition which features hundreds of piece of embroidery and woven fabric and lace. 11am. Also Saturday, November 23rd. The exhibition runs until Saturday, November 30th. Tuesday November 19th “Rescuing Zeugma from the floodwaters of the Euphrates”, an illustrated lecture for MidSomerset DFAS at 11am at Caryford Hall, Castle Cary, BA77 7JJ. £6. Details: 01963 350 527. “Frome Operatic Society & Memorial Theatre” a talk by Humphrey Barnes for Midsomer Norton Townswomens’ Guild at St John the Baptist Church Hall 2pm. Details: 01761 413528. Wednesday November 20th –Saturday November 23rd Hamlet – in Axbridge Town Hall which will be converted into a small, intimate theatre for this production by Axbridge Community Theatre. Tickets £9, from local shops or online (with no booking fee) at Thursday November 21st Yeo Valley – ‘The Story So Far’ – from a kitchen table start in Blagdon to one of the most successful dairies in the UK. North Somerset Rural Business Forum meeting at

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f o r

Winford Manor Hotel, BS40 8DW. 7.30pm 9pm, hot supper. Annual membership £20 or £7.50/meeting. Details: 01531 820307 or Evercreech Drama Group presents "Calendar Girls". Evercreech Village Hall. Show starts at 7.30pm. Also Friday, November 22nd and Saturday, November 23rd. Tickets available from Salon 21, Melita's Hairdressers, cast and committee. Bar available. For more info, tel Greg on 01749 831122. Friday November 22nd – Saturday November 23rd ‘Christmas at the Manor’, a festive production from B.A.D. at the parish hall, Brent Knoll. Curtain rises at 7.30pm. Tickets £8. Details: Sarah Joyce, 01278 760601. Saturday November 23rd Frome Society for Local Study, The History of Frome Cheese Show, with Phil Cary, Assembly Rooms, Frome, 2.30pm. Churchill Academy PTA Christmas Craft Fair, 11am–3pm. Many new stalls, mini farmers market, free admission. Churchill Green, BS25 5QN. Handbag Lottery and Casino Night, a fun evening in aid of Arthritis Research UK, 7.30 for 8pm at Wedmore Village Hall. A casino, supper, bar and raffle (including champagne and a Mulberry bag) Bring a handbag for the handbag lottery! Tickets £15 from Wedmore Paper Shop or 01934 713885. Congresbury Book Sale, 9am–1pm, War Memorial Hall. A wide selection of good quality books, jigsaw puzzles, dvds, cds. Winter Fayre at Mells Tithe Barn. 10am-3pm. Arts, crafts, local produce and gifts. Children’s activities, raffle and refreshments. In aid of Owl Babies Pre-School. For more information, visit: Sunday November 24th Christmas Craft Fair, Stratton on the Fosse Village Hall,10am until 1pm, in aid of Sands, Cancer Research, Dorothy House and Mountain Rescue. Seventeen stands, homemade refreshments. Details: 01761 233651. Christmas Craft Fair at Redhill Village Hall & Club, 11am -4pm. Wide range stalls – FREE ENTRY and all day refreshments.Church Road, Redhill BS40 5SG. To book a table contact 01275 474973 or email Tuesday November 26th ‘A Trip to Jerusalem’ (Pubs & Pub Signs) – a talk by Mike Rowlands for Congresbury Over60’s Club. 2.30 – 4pm at Congresbury War Memorial Hall. Details: 01934 832004. Thursday November 28th Wildlife Trusts – The First 100 Years – Sarah Pitt, who made a film to celebrate this centenary in 2012, will show extracts which include an interview with David Attenborough. Chew

N o v e m b e r

Magna Millennium Hall, 7.45pm, for Chew Valley Wildlife Group. Visitors welcome, £2.50. Friday November 29th “Follow that Star”, an Advent Concert by The Phoenix Singers at Stoke St Michael Parish Church. Tickets £8 including refreshments, from 01749 840660, 840475 or at the door. Saturday November 30th Christmas Bazaar in aid of Weston Hospicecare, at Hutton Village Hall, 10am till 12 noon, organised by Hutton Support Group. Details: 01934 813339. Live Music & Supper Night at Redhill Village Club featuring the Harlem Rhythm Cats, a 5Piece Boogie Woogie and Blues band. 8pm. Supper available during the break and Movember final shave-off. All welcome. Church Road, Redhill, BS40 5SG. Contact 01934 862619. Belshazzar’s Feast returning for Hornblotton Village Hall’s concert season with a seasonal set, delivered with their particular blend of wit, pathos, and spectacular musicianship. Food available, BTO booze.Tickets £12 from 01963 240282 or Details: Barn Dance with caller and The Electric Lobster folk band, 7.30pm at St Andrews Church House, Cheddar, in aid of church funds. Licensed bar. Tickets £10, include ploughman’s supper, from 01934 744442 or 744172. St. Andrew’s Church, Blagdon, Christmas Fayre, 10am–12noon, at Blagdon Village Club. £1 entry to include a mince pie and coffee. Santa will be coming don’t miss out! Haydn’s Creation performed by Chew Valley Choral Society in St Andrew’s Church, Chew Magna, at 7.30pm. Tickets £10 (£5) from 01275 333014. from CVCS members or on the door. Wine available during the interval. Charity Elvis Night at Draycott Village Hall, 7.30pm. Optional 60s or 70s dress. Tickets £10 – all in aid of local charities – from: 07967 619841, 07788 353988 or 07866 086759. Cash bar, no food. Organised by the Friends of Draycott & Rodney Stoke. Have your cake and eat it! Crafts and coffee in aid of Macmillan Cancer Support, St John’s Church Hall, Midsomer Norton, BA3 2HX. Art display, Christmas presents and cards, raffle and many more stalls. For more information, contact Brenda Fisher on: 01761 418089 or e-mail:


2 0 1 3

Sunday December 1st Christmas Fair at The Wellsway, West Harptree, 11am – 4pm, refreshments available. Enquiries: 01761 221382. Tuesday December 3rd Christmas Shopping Night, Winscombe. See page 42. Syrinx Ensemble present a Musical Cheese and Wine Evening. 7.30pm, Henton Village Hall (on B3139 Wells-Wedmore road). Enjoy a candlelit cheese and wine supper in a relaxed cafe-style atmosphere, accompanied by a delightful selection of musical favourites. Tickets: £14 booked in advance, £16 on the door. Tel. 07595 671116 or email: Friday December 6th Cheddar Festive Night – See page 78. Open Mic Night at Redhill Village Club from 8pm. Hosted by Jerry Blythe. All welcome, FREE ENTRY. Church Road, Redhill, BS40 5SG. Contact 01934 862619. Saturday December 7th Christmas Fair at St. Mary’s Wedmore, 9.30am – 12.30pm. Surprise stalls and the First School singers, Christmas gifts & cards, home made cakes and the famous St. Mary’s Fair Trade Coffee Shop. Details: 01934 712216. Bleadon Christmas Market – 9am – 12.30pm, Bumper Christmas market with over 50 stalls. Gifts galore and stock up the freezer with local produce. Raffle. Refreshments. Enq: 01934 812370, Christmas Festival at Holy Trinity Church, Paulton, from 11am. Please come along and enjoy the exhibition and the Christmas Events we have to offer throughout December. Full details: 01761 414087. Churchill Music! – “A splash of red” – Ellipsis Wind Ensemble accompany canapés and a wine-tasting selection by John Murray, formerly of Avery’s, at St John the Baptist Church, Churchill, 7.30pm-9.45pm. Tickets £18.50 (£16.50) from 01934 852919 or email Wednesday December 11th Wedmore by Lamplight – Christmas shopping and entertainment. Thursday December 12th Chew Magna Christmas Street Party. See page 90. Friday, December 13th Wrington Dickensian Fayre, The Plough, 6.30pm, entertainment, food, Christmas gifts.


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ACROSS: 1/21 Fleet Air Arm Museum, 6 Eel, 8 Ugly brute, 10 Mason, 11 Kingfishers, 12 Bay, 13 Abominable, 16 Herd, 19 Drew, 20 Ventilator, 22 Run, 23 Under canvas, 26 Meare, 27 Wind chime, 28 Née, 29 Mells Stream. DOWN: 1 Faulkland, 2 Ellen, 3 To be fair, 4 Adele, 5 Mimosa, 6 East Brent, 7 Lundy, 9 Upstage, 14 Ocean wave, 15 Later on, 17 Darts team, 18 Clear cut, 22 Roman, 24 Dowel, 25 Voile.

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Get your skates on


SKATERS are being offered a new venue to skate as Puxton Park prepares to launch its first ever magical skating rink. The popular Adventure Park outside Weston-superMare will be launching a festive attraction in November as part of its Christmas celebrations. It will be located in Puxton’s car park and therefore skaters will be able to enjoy the attraction without having to pay normal admission entry fees. The rink will also be available to hire out for private parties and schools in term time with special rates available.

Christmas Fair

Sunday 1st December 2013 11am – 4pm # Refreshments Available #

Tel: 01761 221382


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Mendiptimes - Volume 9 Issue 6  

Celebrating life on the Mendips and surrounding areas