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WHAT’S ON in our ten villages - is a non-profit-making community newspaper, run for the benefit of ten villages.

FEBRUARY 2nd Mon. Binham Quiz Night, The Chequers. 6.30/7.30 2nd Mon. Langham Keep Fit Class*, 10 am 3rd Tues. Langham Ladybirds visit to CADS rehearsal 3rd Tues, Binham Group of Artists*, 10 am 5th Thurs. Langham, Mobile library 7th Sat. Langham FOL Coffee morning 10 – 12 18th Wed. Langham FOL Coffee Morning 10 - 12 19th Thurs Binham/Hindringham Women’s Club 22nd Sun. Binham Pancake Races 12.30 23rd Mon. Gunthorpe 50:50 Club 26th Thurs. Binham Local History Group 7.30 26th Thurs. Langham Mobile Library 28th Sat. Field Dalling Village Hall, Races, 7. 00

We warmly welcome drawings, articles and letters for publication, but must reserve the right to edit or exclude items. The items published do not necessarily reflect the views of the editors or the village representatives. For information about submitting items for publication, or if you want to help in any other way, please contact your village representative, through whom all village news must be submitted. For general information please send a message to our email address:


MARCH 2nd Mon. Binham Quiz Night, The Chequers. 6.30/7.30 7th Sat. Langham FOL Coffee Morning 10 – 12 10th Tues. Langham Parish Council 7.00 11th Wed. Langham Ladybirds, Mardle 7.30 18th Wed. Stiffkey Music Evening 18th Wed. Langham FOL Coffee Morning 19th Thurs. Binham/Hindringham Womens’s Club 19th Thurs. Langham Mobile Library 21st Sat. Gunthorpe Parish Plan Meeting,. Institute 12.30 21st Sat. Gunthorpe Institute AGM & Gunthorpe History Pictures 7.00 26th Thurs.Binham LocL History Group 7.30 28th Sat. Gunthorpe 50-50 Club 28th Sat. Bale Parish Plan Meeting 12.30 – 2.00

PLEASE NOTE: CONTACT FOR ADVERTISERS For enquiries about advertising in Local Lynx, please contact David John, tel: 01328-830933 Rates for advertising (pre-paid) are: One column x 62 mm (1/8 page): £72 for six issues. Small Ads Panel on the back page: Available for individuals and businesses providing local services. Cost: £36 for six issues.

* Group meets each week

DISTRIBUTION CONTACT: For all enquiries or offers to help, please contact: Rita White, tel: 01328 830821



In North Norfolk In winter and spring of 09, Voluntary Norfolk will be offering a series of free training courses and workshops to voluntary and community groups, which will cover a variety of topics, including running a group, funding, financing, volunteers and marketing, in each of the towns in N. Norfolk. For info. contact Francis Burrows or Paul Smith, 01263 516018, or email north@voluntarynorfolk.org.uk

Back Lane Blakeney Father Michael Simison 12 Hindringham Road Gt. Walsingham Norfolk Tel: 01328 821 353

Priest in Residence Father William Wells (the house behind the church)

Service Times Mass for Sunday Vigil Mass: Sunday Mass:


Saturday 6.00pm. 10.30am.


holds regular advice surgeries in the constituency. He can also be contacted via the constituency office at: 15 Market Place North Walsham Norfolk NR28 9BP Tel: 01692 403752 Fax: 01692 500818 e-mail: normanlamb@hotmail.com

High Street Blakeney Minister: The Reverend David Greenaway 8 St. Andrew’s Close Holt. Tel: 01263 712 181 Sunday Service at 3.00 pm. For weekday services and details of preachers see the ‘Glaven Valley Newsletter’.


Church Services for Bale and Stiffkey Benefice for February and March HC=Holy Communion. FS=Family Service. MP=Morning Prayer. BCP=Book of Common Prayer All Communion Services are in traditional language except those marked *

Parish Bale Field Dalling Saxlingham Gunthorpe Sharrington Binham Langham Morston Stiffkey Parish Bale Field Dalling Saxlingham Gunthorpe Sharrington Binham Langham Morston Stiffkey

1st February 9.30am HC At Saxlingham 9.30am HC 9.30am MP 9.30am MP 11.00am HC 9.30amHC* 9.30am HC BCP 11.00am HC*

8th February 9.30am HC 11.00am F.S. At Field Dalling 9.30am HC 9.30am HC 11.00am HC 9.30am HC No service At Langham

15th February 9.30am HC At Saxlingham 11.00am HC No service 9.30am MP 11.00am FS 9.30am MP + short HC 9.30am HC BCP 8.00am HC*

22nd February 9.30am HC 11.00am MP BCP At Field Dalling 11.00am HC 9.30am HC 9.30am HC At Stiffkey No service 9.30am FS

1st March

8th March

15th March

22nd March

9.30am HC At Saxlingham 9.30am HC 9.30am MP 9.30am MP 11.00am HC 9.30am HC* 9.30am HC BCP 11.00am HC*

9.30am HC 11.00am FS At Field Dalling 9.30am HC 9.30am HC 11.00am HC 9.30am HC No service At Langham

9.30am HC At Saxlingham 11.00am HC No service 9.30am MP 11.00am FS 9.30am MP + short HC 9.30am HC BCP 8.00am HC*

Mothering Sunday

9.30am HC 11.00am MP BCP At Field Dalling

11.00am HC 9.30am HC 9.30am HC At Stiffkey No service 9.30am FS

Group Holy Communion Service on Sunday 29th March at 10.30am, at Sharrington 25 February (Ash Wednesday): Holy Communion Service with Ashing at Langham, 10.00am and Sharrington, 7.00pm. th

Lent Course: joint Lent Course with the Glaven Valley Group of Churches. Details to be announced. Regular Weekday Services Binham: Tuesday, 6.00pm Evening Prayers, Langham: Wednesday, 10.00am Holy Communion

Stiffkey: Friday, 10.00am Holy Communion


our churches and communities. But I hope that whatever changes you have to meour churches and communities. asure up to, that you will always remember this: the love that God has for you and for all the creation simply cannot and will not ever alter. As Mother Julian of Norwich wrote “In his love, he wraps and enfolds us. He enfolds us for love, and he will never let us go …. and so he wills that we love him and enjoy him and firmly trust him; and all shall be well.” ( from ‘Enfolded in Love’) My thanks and love go to you all. Farewell and God Bless you, Joanna Anderson

“Everything changes but change itself. Everything flows and nothing remains the same … You cannot step twice into the same river, for other waters and yet others go flowing ever on.” (Heraclitus). As the New Year began, it was announced in the churches of our Benefice that I and my family will be moving to a new life in Hexham, Northumberland, after Easter. Changes in our lives have brought about this move. Our children are all grown up and the last about to leave home; elderly relatives once needing our help have either died or are moving away; new opportunities have presented themselves, and so we are leaving North Norfolk. Having served in the Norwich Diocese for almost 14 years as a priest, I look back on much personal learning and growth. I have a great deal to be thankful for and to reflect upon out of the time I have served in East Norfolk, Norwich and here in North Norfolk. I know I go to many new experiences and challenges. I also know that my leaving the benefice will inevitably mean some new challenges and changes for

DEANERY NEWS Next meeting of the Deanery Synod Thursday March 5th 2009 Holt church hall 7.15pm for 7.30pm Speaker: Mr. Peter Halden of the Ecclesiastical Insurance Group. All welcome for the whole meeting or for the presentation alone, which will be the first item on the agenda.


NOW FOR THE GOOD NEWS We are delighted to say that the appeal for help with appeared in the last issue has resulted in a number of people offering to help produce the paper. We also now have a replacement Advertising Manager whom you will be reading more about in the next issue. Greatly heartening also were the many massages of appreciation we have received. Clearly the paper is well thought-of both by many readers and by our advertisers, some of whom have told us that they get most of their work through Local Lynx. We still have a long way to go but are pressing ahead with our plans to develop the way the paper is produced, using computer and internet technology, to allow a wider editorial team to work on each issue. This does not mean, however, that yet more helpers would not be welcome. If you are reasonably computerliterate, and think you might enjoy being a journalist for a few hours every-other month, then do contact us on 01328 830056 and we can tell you more about what would be involved. The good news is that we now have real hopes for the continuation of your paper. Bob and Helen – and the Editorial Team.

COUNCILLORS’ NOTEBOOK Latest update on the Boundary Committee's proposals for the review of Local Government in Norfolk - the Secretary of State requires more guidance from the Committee, therefore the final decision date is now 'by 13th February, 2009'. Flood Warning and Evacuation Reports submitted to the County, District and Borough Councils concerned are now being discussed. The importance of retaining sirens and the training of wardens is emphasised. The Shoreline Management Plan 3a, Hunstanton to Kelling, is proceeding. The need for the public to express their views is noted and opportunities will be publicised. 2009 promises to be a difficult year in economic terms and, aware that many local people are concerned with tourism, N. N. District Council has commissioned a new promotional DVD for North Norfolk - designed to guide organisations round our coast and countryside - and has rejoined Norfolk Tourism to highlight our local attractions to a wider public. The Food Safety Award Scheme has been set up to ensure highest standards. We have so many attractions - wildlife, the coast, excellent pubs and restaurants supplying local produce, villages with beautiful churches ... any assistance with promotions is readily available at the Council Offices. N. N. District Council is working to Keep Norfolk Local. For more info. visit www.keepnorfolklocal.com

THE FRONT PAGE As one part of our plans to ensure the future of the paper, we would like to build up a collection of illustrations which can be used by the Editor of the Month on the front cover of the paper. The technology used by our printers does not allow for the reproduction of acceptable quality photographs so we are looking for line, or line and wash, illustrations of local scenes in any medium. The only constraint is that the pictures should be as big as possible to fit on an A4 page and must be twice as wide as high, e.g. 24cms wide by 12 cms tall. The collection of illustrations will be an on-going project and we would like as many as possible to be sent in. Original artwork will be scanned and safely returned to you – so please include your name and address as well as a title for your picture. Until further notice, illustrations should be sent to: Local Lynx, 28 Binham Road, Langham NR25 7AB.

Contact Details Jonathan Savory (01328 820719). e.mail:jsavory@north-norfolk.gov.uk - and Joyce Trett (01328 710300) e.mail:jtrett@lineone.net (Binham, Langham & Stiffkey) Mrs Lindsay Brettle (01263 710030) e.mail:Lindsay.brettle@north-norfolk.gov.uk (Sharrington, Field Dalling,/Saxlingham & Morston). Mrs A.R.Green (01328 8782;73) e.mail:ann.green@north-norfolk.gov.uk (Gunthorpe with Bale).


WINTER’S SNOW In the hushed night of falling snow Holding all in a dreamlike show A hand rotates on a window pane To etch on its mist an oval frame Through which his face peers On a tireless scene over many years Brilliant stars dazzling the black sky So still, no wind carries a cry Of bleating from disturbed sheep Or clucking hens which foxes seek. Cradles the stone farmhouse between hills Which to him his forbears willed Their husbandry and knowledge akin Lay deep in a well of him His heightened senses would become aware Of a peaceful presence beating there Isolated, some may say who couldn’t understand A creation of nature, in his blood and land. Queenie Marshall

GLAVEN CARING Charity Dinner in the Harbour Room, Blakeney Friday 27th February. 6.30 for 7.00 Guest Speaker Keith Skipper, Writer, Broadcaster and Mardler Join us and support 35 years of Glaven Caring, with a four course dinner, created by local Chefs, using the finest Norfolk Produce. Tickets £35, from Glaven Caring, Thistleton Court, Blakeney, and The Anchor Shop, High Street Blakeney.

FAKENHAM CHORAL SOCIETY'S Spring Concert - A Celebration of English Music will take place in Fakenham Parish Church on


Saturday, March 14, at 7.30pm

At the Glaven Centre, Thistleton Court, Blakeney, Holt. Tel: 01263 740762 Feb 25th, March 27th, April 22nd .

Music by Vaughan Williams, Elgar, Parry, Purcell, Britten and Handel. Tickets £10 on the door (under 18s free)



Life in the Rain Forest

In Cley Village Hall this February Thurs, 5th 8.00, Fri. 6th 8.00, Sat. 7th 3.00 & 8.00 Tickets from ‘Made in Cley’. 01263-740134, also at door. Adults £6, Children £3 Friday - Charity Night, proceeds to N. Norfolk Radio Families First, Charity No. 1120317 Refreshments at all performances, Bar each night.

An illustrated talk by Michael Fogden on Thursday, January 15th, 2009, in Cley Village Hall at 7.30pm. £1.50 Members, £2.00 Non-members, including refreshments

CLEY W.I. The committee apologises to all for the cancellation of January’s meeting. We hope to see members at our February meeting when fees for 2009 will be payable. The next two meetings will be on: Thurs February 5th. and Thurs March 5th. Cley Village Hall 2.30pm. Visitors are most welcome to join us. Jan Hope


BALE DIARY 15th Nov 2008 Approaching Patch Plantation I heard strange cries and found a red kite flying above the little wood, being mobbed by gulls. There were about six gulls and every so often one would dash at the kite, and one or other of them would let out a scream. Kites have not yet spread to Norfolk so this one must have been passing through. I have seen one once before, at Stiffkey sluice. They are big birds, their wingspan much wider than a buzzard’s. The v-shaped tail is the clue. After four or five attacks from the much smaller gulls the kite disappeared into the wood, and I heard no more. On the way home a big flock of rooks and jackdaws settled and rose and settled again, the jackdaws calling loudly, groups flying off until the whole flock made a big black cloud flying around and calling in Hammond’s stubble field on Sharrington Road. 29th Nov 2008 Today everything is watery. This morning first thing I was in the garden lighting the second burner on the kiln for my biscuit firing. The wild geese seemed to be coming in over Bale from all directions, some in long single skeins like lines of embroidery, others constantly reforming their vee formation, and chattering away. They have high and low pitched honks all together, oink oink, squeak squeak. I think some were on my friend’s sugar beet and were disturbed because they came up from the ground in a big bunch and then sorted out, but some were coming in from the coast as well. The sky was translucent puffs of grey cloud. You could see satin blue through them, and a jet, shining silver, in the sun high above. Later we walked around Bale. All the young barley covered in raindrops, and puddles reflecting the sky everywhere. The skies seem huge now the trees are all sculptural nakedness against them. We went in the wood by the solitary beech tree and walked around her. Winter is here and she no longer provides much shelter under her graceful limbs, but their dark beauty is exposed now. The criss-crossing branches of the winter trees remind me of a painting by John Nash. Down at the bottom of Cake’s the old dead oak has fallen in the strong winds of the last week. As I went into the meadow to photograph it we disturbed a barn owl in the grass. It turned out to be a very sad, probably starving, owl; it couldn’t fly and instead hopped away from us. Possibly one of the owls I photographed in the trees here in February. I rang the Hawk and Owl Trust, but we agreed that it would probably be better to let nature take its course with this one, it’s so early in the winter that if it isn’t making a living now, no amount of captive force-feeding is going to get it going as a real wild survivor.

Something like 90% of young owls don’t make it. However, they told me that the kestrel I rescued in March did well and was released. As I was walking back down Sharrington road 3 skeins of geese converged and appeared to hold a conversation, winging back and round until all 3 coalesced and began to spill the wind out from under their wings, landing in a field out of sight, nearer the main road. 2nd Dec 2008 This morning was blazing with frost and a bright blue sky. We went out early and avoided the snow and sleet which arrived a couple of hours later. The sun on our backs gave us giant shadows across the stubble and the leaves sparkled and crunched underfoot. In Cakes Lane we met the owner of the old water meadow; he was attempting to clear the ditch which has backed up all the way down to the road and is flooding his rape field. We had a conversation about the barn owl I saw on Saturday. It had flown up into a tree by Sunday, so perhaps there is hope for it. And there were hobbies nesting in the wood last year, they raised one youngster. I must look out for them next year.

BALE VILLAGE HALL SOCIAL CLUB November December £25 Jim Peppitt £25 Paul Turnbull £10 Ted Hudson £10 Anne Poole £5 Cedric Hewitt £5 Jinty Ramm £5 Grace Allison £5 Lady Nicolson Special Christmas Draw £25 Joanna Hammond


CAROLS AROUND THE TREE Thank you to all who came and enjoyed the carols along with Fakenham Band. Also thank you to Alex and Steve from the Chequers for providing the refreshments. £50 from the collection has been give to Wells Cottage Hospital. Note – this year’s date is Monday 21st December 2009!! Liz Brown



Sunday 22nd March

By the time you read this we hope the building in the north aisle will have been substantially completed, and then made ready for use by the end of February. Unfortunately the cold weather has prevented the outdoor finishing work of the lime-mortar render on the retaining walls for the path and the tar-bound gravel top surface. We will have to manage with the present rough surface and generally unfinished appearance of the path until this work can be done in the warmer weather, hopefully before Easter. The conservation of the gatehouse, precinct wall and the north aisle building are not the only elements of the Project. Equally important is the provision of information to visitors. A great deal of effort has been expended on preparing for displays of artefacts, information panels, the web site and leaflets on a range of subjects related to the Priory together with walking and cycling tours of the surrounding area. Many of these items are now in production and most should be available by March. As the Project nears its end, after some six years of planning and execution, we are pleased that there is still good time to have everything ready by 17th May when the Bishop of Norwich will lead a service of thanksgiving and celebration, to be followed by refreshments. Information on the arrangements for this morning will be available nearer the date. Pauline Scott and David Frost

There will be a special Family Service for Mothering Sunday in the Priory at 11 a.m. Posies for all mothers! Do come and bring all the family – grandparents, grandchildren and all your friends.

BINHAM NATIVITY PLAY On 18th December the annual Nativity Play took place in the Priory Church at Binham. Once again, it was a great success, with the story of Christmas acted by children dressed as shepherds, angels and wise men, with the excellent narration by Andrew Cuthbert. Grateful thanks are due to Lucy Walduck for organising the event, to Geoff Scott for playing the organ and to Wyatt Earp for his beautiful flute playing. Thank you also to our special guest Father Christmas, to all of those who supplied the refreshments, and of course to all the children. TW

BINHAM CHRISTMAS TREE I would like to thank all those who helped and gave their time in erecting the Christmas tree on the village green. To Simon Turner for donating the giant Christmas tree, Sue Sullivan for supplying electricity, William and Oliver Wales for arranging lights, Jeremy Taylor of Tracked Dumper Hire for allowing Jason Woodford to erect the tree, Jack Groom for poles to support the electric wiring, Toby Morgan and Barry Betts for fixing poles, wiring etc. Many thanks to everyone involved. Trevor


A NEW YEAR MARDLE How did your Christmas go? Too much food and drink, eh? Last year you said never again. Yes, it’s so commercial now. All those dreadful Christmas number ones. At least it was not rap and it’s better than most of Leonard Cohen’s dreary songs. The girl was fine but I bet Simon Cowell will get a “gong.” Thank goodness for real Christmas music. We need a spiritual boost after 2008. Gresham School’s “Messiah” was splendid again. They really inspire those kids but the chorus blew my socks off. I’m so sorry we forgot about the carols round the tree, this year. There’s something so Victorian and uplifting about a brass band at Christmas. Fakenham Town Band. Excellent, I hear, and over seventy others came. I love the really old carols. But some feminists want to change “O come and adore Him” to “O come in adoration.” Others claim that “O come all ye faithful” is really a Jacobite rallying song about the birth of Bonnie Prince Charlie. Even the “Twelve Days of Christmas” is supposedly a secret Catholic catechism but it was just a party song with forfeits if you forget the next line. I always do. Anyway, the carols will long outlast the scholars and the gender sensitive. Of course, we never miss the Carols from King’s. And the Queen. Not singing carols, you nit, or not yet! Just imagine: ‘The Royal X factor’ or even ‘Royalty Come Dancing.’ After John Sergeant, anything’s possible. I meant from King’s College Chapel. That boy treble at the beginning is chosen only at the last minute. Guess what they should also broadcast at Christmas? In Yorkshire they get together in pubs to sing their own carol versions. Their “While shepherds watched” is much the best. I never realised there were so many marvellous singers in the world until I got broadband, even in the world of pop. Pop culture hasn’t strangled the rest, yet most teenagers listen to nothing else. So sad. “Classical music” is alive still, and traditional folk music is certainly not dead, even if you rarely hear it. It is vibrant at wellattended gigs like the Cambridge Folk Festival and on local radio. Just explore “folk” on BBC iplayer and “YouTube.” You’ll be amazed. I’ll give you some names if you like. Some are celebrities in their own field but they all spring from the heart of traditional music in the British Isles. Through “crossover” music they even bridge the sad gap with pop culture. Dylan Thomas said “Praise the Lord we are a musical nation.” The Welsh have no monopoly, especially at Christmas time. Here’s a health to all our splendid singers, with their glee clubs, folk festivals, Handel and Bach oratorios, ‘Last Choir Standing,” carols on the village green and their church services and concerts. Got your glass handy? Cheers! Ian Johnson

BINHAM’S SECOND ANNUAL PANCAKE RACES Sunday 22nd February Village Hall Playing Field. 12.30 for 12.45 start whatever the weather – it will happen! Teams of 4. £8 per team. Individual Children’s Race and Veteran’s Race will be arranged on the day. Pans and Pancakes will be provided. Colourful pinnies, chefs’ hats etc. may be worn! Please let Maureen Frost know before 20th February if you can take part – with your team name if possible. Soup and Rolls will be available.

THE BINHAM PANTOMIME 2010 It has been proposed that the good people of Binham and Cockthorpe would enjoy producing and performing a pantomime next ‘Season’! (usually January). Would all budding thespians, writers, musicians, directors/producers, make-up artists and dressers, designers and stage hands please contact Tim Walduck. Surely, given the previous record of the village, we could produce an excellent show, but we need to gauge the level of support for the project before forming committees etc. Please contact Tim at 01328 830775.

FOOD FOR THOUGHT Quarrels and misunderstandings would not last long if the fault was only on one side.


BINHAM PC In Praise of Councillors!


Do you ever give a thought to that selfless group of people – the local Parish Councillors? In larger places they may have political reasons for standing for office, but generally speaking, and in my experience invariably in the villages, they just want to help the place they live in run smoothly. They get no pay for what they do, and very seldom any thanks, and yet they turn out in all weathers to work through the agenda at the Parish Council meeting. Invariably what they have to discuss is some dictat from central government which has very little relevance to local affairs, but which they have no choice but to debate. When matters are of more-local interest, they are often castigated by local people if they get it wrong, and ignored if they get it right – “What are the Councillors doing about the litter problem!”; “Why are they allowing irresponsible dog owners to get away with it!” has been heard in more than one village throughout the land. In Binham over the last year, your local Councillors have been responsible for designing and (physically) erecting the new village sign; for organising the Christmas Carols on the Green; and for numerous other selfless acts that may or may not have gone unnoticed. Give them a thought now and then – and if a vacancy arises, perhaps you might consider joining them! One vacancy that arose recently was following the resignation of Lionel Wilde. Lionel has given several years’ service to the village, and has only ceased to be a Councillor now on medical advice. His experience as a retired architect has been of considerable assistance to his colleagues over the years when considering planning applications, and he has freely given his time in other ways, such as designing the new sign, and personally emptying litter bins. He is due the thanks of all the residents of the village, as well as those of his fellow Councillors. Keith Leesmith, Parish Clerk keith@leesmith.co.uk 01328 710261

(Sail Training) Ltd

“FRIENDS” Appeal. Despite the present recession (or whatever the politicians are calling it) we have had a wonderful response to our recent appeal for our NORFOLK BOAT charity as reported in last Autumn’s Lynx. This will enable us to continue to send young Norfolk people to sea in sail training ships: “To inspire and develop the spirit of Norfolk youth”. This charity was started in about 1980 at Binham with the help of the biennial Holkham Country Fair. Thanks to the support of “Friends” of the Norfolk Boat, each year some 180 youngsters are given financial support to enable them to take part in various character building sea going experiences. Supporters will shortly receive a copy of the latest newsletter - “Sails Tales”. Andrew Cuthbert

MEMORIAL HALL - 100+ CLUB December. £50 Mrs C Witherington. Mrs P Scott. £25 Mrs B Wilde. £10 Mr G Savory. Mrs L Eagle. £5 Mr Johnson, R. Barbram, Mr A Howell. January. £25 Mr J Stevens. £10 Mr. Marshall, Alex Howell. £5 Mrs Hill, Wendy Marsh, Mr S Hewitt There are numbers still available if you would like to join. Please call June Read at 01328 830106.

FLOWERS IN THE CHURCH The flowers in the Church always look so welcoming and beautiful but someone has to take the time to arrange them and keep them looking fresh. Thank you to all the flower arrangers for your dedication in providing lovely flower arrangements throughout the year. Brenda Wilde


THE OPEN CIRCLE Teddy Maufe, from the Real Ale Shop, is the speaker at the Feb. 19th meeting of the Binham and Hindringham Women's Club. Teddy will explain how the ale is made and hold a tasting of his most popular ales. Partners welcome! At the March 19th meeting, Maurice Morson, former head of Norfolk CID, will talk about the history of the police and grisly Norfolk murders. We meet at 7.15pm on the third Thursday of each month at Hindringham Village Hall. New members are always welcome. Just come along or ring secretary Fiona Thompson on 830639.

QUIZ NIGHT Quiz Nights continue at The Chequers, thanks to Steve and Alex. As usual it will be on the first Monday in the month - so we hope to see you on Monday 2nd February and Monday 2nd March. You don’t need to be part of a team - just come along at 6.30 if you’re going to have a meal or at 7.30 for a drink and the Quiz.

HISTORY GROUP Thurs. 26 February. Ann Mason The Historic Landscape of Thetford Forest Park Thurs. 26th March. Dr Rob Liddiard. Living on the Edge: Castles and Commons in East Anglia 1066-1200. Thurs. 23rd April. Professor Hassell Smith. The Bacons of Stiffkey and the Manns of Binham All meetings - 7.30 p.m. in the Binham Village Hall. Refreshments available. £2 Members; £3 non-Members 01328 830270 or cpwrightuk@aol.com th

FAMILY CRICKET Following the success of our last game which closed the Village Fête in 2005, we would like to hold another match this summer. (In aid of the Priory Project.) The format proposed is a 30-over, All-Comers, Softball game, with demon batsmen encouraged to retire to give everybody the chance to participate. Volunteers to help with Cream Teas etc also needed please. Would all interested parties please contact: Tim Walduck at 01328 830775

BINHAM GUILD OF ARTISTS The Group consists of anyone interested in Art or Craft, beginner or otherwise. Artists with professional experience form part of the Group and will gladly advise if needed. We meet every Tuesday morning from 10 to 12 in the Village Hall. A fee of £2 per morning includes coffee and biscuits. A demonstration of painting or craftwork normally takes place on the first Tuesday of every month. For further information contact James Bucknill at 01328 830651


NORFOLK WEATHER, ONE CLIMATE The first week in January here was a bit like Paulet Island and Brown Bluff in Antarctica last January (see Lynx 59, ‘Antarctic Expedition’). Very changeable, with a few moments of sunshine followed by a rain shower, some greyness, then a snow flurry, then more sun, and the temperature hovering around freezing. All that was missing was the spectacular scenery, the 30 mph winds that blow almost continuously in Antarctica, and the pong of ten thousand or so penguins. The same week it was reported that it was shirtsleeve weather at the UK’s Rothera base in western Antarctica and that global heating is melting the multi-season Arctic ice faster than expected. How do we connect all these up? The Atlantic Conveyor, or thermo-haline circulation, has a lot to do with it. It shifts heat around the oceans, from the tropics to the polar regions. A lot of heat – the equivalent of about one million nuclear power stations, according to NASA. The Gulf Stream that keeps our islands warmer than they should be at this latitude is part of it. Trouble is, the ice melting in the Arctic dumps fresh water into the Conveyor and that slows it down by reducing convection currents. Some estimates are that the flow has reduced by about one-third in the past few years. Less Conveyor, less Gulf Stream – which means a colder UK in winter, but quite possibly much hotter summers. Remember the heat waves of 2003? Paradoxical as it may seem, the fact of colder winters here confirms that global heating is taking place, and on a big scale, but slowly. This shift in our weather is what the climate models have been predicting since at least 2004 (NASA again). The climate changes quite slowly, over years or decades, but weather patterns change much more rapidly. So it is genuinely difficult to say that this or that weather event is unequivocally due to a warmer planet, but the trends are increasingly clear. Our planet is heating up and all that extra heat energy in the earth system is producing more extreme weather. If you are interested or concerned about all this, then do make a diary note to go and see ‘The Age of Stupid’, a major new documentary about the way the planet is heating up and the part that we play in it. It will be in cinemas, including Norwich, from 30th March. You can find out more and view a trailer by visiting the film’s website at www.ageofstupid.net. Anthony Smith

CHRISTMAS BAZAAR Thank you to all who helped create such an enjoyable Christmas Bazaar in November. Many thanks to all who came and supported us and made it such a success. We made £1,750 which goes towards the upkeep costs of the Church and to the many charities that the Church supports. Brenda Wilde

BINHAM VILLAGE HALL There is to be an “Easter Fayre” at the Village Hall on Sunday 19th April. 2p.m. – 5p.m. If you would like to be involved please give Liz a ring (830519). There will be a best Easter Bonnet competition, for children, ladies and men, so please get making!

CAROL SERVICE AT COCKTHORPE On Saturday, 20th December, we enjoyed our Christmas Carol Service, which is always well attended. Special thanks to Helen Barow for stepping in to play the organ at the last minute (not an easy task), to Tim Fawcett for taking the service, to Mandy for organising readings and mulled wine, to Juliet Case and Maurice and Sue Matthews for decorating the church, to all the readers, and finally - to everyone who came to make it such a lovely evening. Ann Massingham

HAPPY EVENT! We are happy to announce the birth of William Matthew Cowan, 7 lbs 12 oz. Born on his Grandad’s birthday! His mum, Victoria (formerly Matthews) used to live in Cockthorpe.


COME TO THE RACES! Sat 28th Feb from 7pm Come and enjoy a night at the races in Field Dalling Village Hall with supper and a glass of wine or beer included in the ticket price of £10! No previous experience of racing is necessary. All will be explained on the night.


There will be eight action-packed races with commentary from Channel 4 Racing. A tote will be running, with cash payouts for the lucky winners. There will also be a raffle with some Really Good Prizes.

A recently widowed friend recently found that she owed a local council some money following a mistake she made in one of the many complex forms she had to complete following her husband’s death.

James Duncan will be our compere for the evening, which is mainly in aid of having a fun night out. Oh, and helping the Village Hall keep its rental cost at the low rate of £5/hr for a while longer (£4/hr to residents of Field Dalling).

There was not an issue – she was happy to pay the money both sides agreed was owed, but there was an issue with the behaviour of the council and its procedures. Most people will be at least vaguely familiar with a piece of legislation called the Data Protection Act – a very necessary protection for all of our personal details and even then the ability of government, councils and agencies to lose these details is only too often a leading news item. When the council official came to discuss our friend’s mistake with her, one of the official’s actions was to insist on taking digital camera pictures of all of her bank account statements thus creating a digital record which is subject to the Data Protection Act – sadly our friend was “persuaded” to cooperate with this action without making any safeguards. When queried as to how pictures containing personal data in a digital camera inside a car met the requirements of the Act, the council provided a long explanation as to how data was protected once it was inside their system but ignored the fundamental question as to what they would do if the camera went missing whilst “on the road” – would they, for example even have a record of the personal data that had been compromised and would they notify those concerned that their account details had been lost?

Admission is by ticket and numbers are limited to the capacity of the village hall, so book your place early by calling Mary Hunt on 01328 830917 or Anthony Smith on 01328 830546. Anthony Smith

It is, clearly, a personal decision as to whether you let a council official take digital records of your bank accounts in this way, but given the recent track record of official agencies in losing digital data you may wish to consider at least asking some fundamental questions as to what purpose it is needed for, under what authority it is being collected and what is going to happen to the data and its subsequent protection in a system which meets the requirements of the Act. If you agree to have the pictures taken you may also wish to insist that you have a record of the official’s name, that details of each picture are given to you – picture file reference and date, and that a “receipt” is provided for the data – this can then be passed to your bank(s) to confirm that your account data has been made

For ‘What’s On’ in Gunthorpe: See Page 2, and watch notice board for full details:


FRED’S GARDENING DIARY Notes for February and March FLOWER GARDEN Any roses which still need pruning should be done now, cutting out any damaged wood and cut back to an outward bud. Climbing shrubs and roses should be checked and loose growths tied in to trellis or wall hooks again cutting out any damaged wood. If you have any new bare rooted shrubs or roses to plant the soil should be prepared now adding Growmore or fish blood and bone fertiliser. You can start sweet peas in a cold greenhouse or indoors. Soak seed for 10-12 hours or just chip the skin with a sharp knife to start germination. Prepare your seed trays and fill with compost ready for sowing your annual flower seed in late March or early April. VEGETABLE GARDEN

SMILING SAM AND SPEEDWATCH As a result of feedback of the Speedwatch volunteers’ monitoring of speeds through Bale, the Norfolk Constabulary deployed their “Smiling SAM” equipment in the village on three occasions in October. This equipment measures speed in both directions and notifies the vehicle driver of his or her speed – I understand with a “smile” if the limit is not being exceeded. However the results make depressing reading and show just how many drivers clearly think that speed limits apply to others but not to them. The equipment was deployed near the church, i.e. well inside the speed limit signs and close to where the volunteers normally monitor speeds in the centre of the village. On 1 October between 1100 and 1200 some 21 vehicles went through northbound, i.e. towards Field Dalling, and 35 went south. Northbound more than 50% of vehicles were exceeding the speed limit on entry to the system, with the highest recorded speed at an amazing 51mph – this after the matrix sign warning given to all northbound motorists exceeding 30mph. Southbound 34% of vehicles were exceeding the limit with the highest recorded speed being 48mph. The system was deployed again on 10 October between 1120 and 1220. Of 35 vehicles northbound just under 50% entered above the speed limit with the highest entry speed being 46mph. Southbound the figures were 30 vehicles with 33% exceeding the limit on entry and a highest entry speed of 40mph. Another deployment on 20 October between 0925 and 1025 gave figures of 21 vehicles northbound, 62% of which entered above the speed limit and with a highest entry speed of 49mph, and southbound 35 vehicles, 31% entering above the speed limit and a highest entry speed of 37mph. Overall the problem is clearly much worse northbound than southbound – perhaps because southbound vehicles have been forced to slow down in the “Bale Narrows”, and taken as an average of all vehicles the monitored speeds are only just outside the speed limits northbound and well within them southbound. However, this average includes slow moving farm vehicles etc, and the fact remains that speeds in excess of 40mph in the centre of the village are only too common – and this is a speed well within the “kill zone” for pedestrians and other vulnerable road users who have no choice but to be on the road. Let us hope that next time it will not be a “Smiling SAM” but a policeman ready to enforce the limits!

You can plant a few seeds of early cabbage and lettuce in a cold greenhouse or on a windowsill indoors to get an early start. They are best planted in single cell trays to avoid root disturbance when planting out in the garden in early April. You can now sow broad beans in the garden and if you followed my recommendation to sow some last November they should just be starting to grow – mine were just up in the last week of December. Most seeds sown directly in the garden should be left until April unless you have a light soil and can protect them with cloches. You can plant tomato seed in late March indoors on a windowsill for planting in a cold greenhouse in early May. Plant in 3 (7-8cm) pots and when they start to grow give plenty of light. Space them well apart as they grow, to get good sturdy plants. Keep compost moist at all times. Your digging should be finished by now and fertiliser spread at about a handful (about 130gm or 4½oz) per square metre. You can plant a few beetroot in late March and a few early potatoes, but early April is best for most potatoes. Onion sets can also be planted in March. Plant about 10cm (4 ) apart and in rows about 30cm (12 ) apart. As soon as they start to grow keep hoeing to keep weeds down while they are small. If done on a dry sunny day the weeds will soon disappear. Finally sprinkle fertiliser round your fruit bushes and trees and work in with a fork or hoe. Fred Morley


ANOTHER WORKING DAY If you had to take a guess as to where the last place on Earth is that Gunthorpe resident Alan Russell might be asked to conduct a Health and Safety related training course, then Afghanistan might not even make the list – let alone be the answer. This is the first part of an article which Alan has written to tell us of his experience – Part 2 will be in Lynx Issue 65. As individuals we often ask of others, during conversation, “What is it you do to earn a living?” For myself I reply “Oh I’m involved in health and safety law and the training of others in the subject, nothing very exciting”. That normally brings on the look of displeasure reserved for Estate Agents or Tax Inspectors until I explain that I’m not interested in conkers falling from trees. I deal with very different safety issues. So it was that I felt a mixture of trepidation and excitement to be asked to go to Kandahar in Afghanistan to carry out training for both the MOD and a civilian company building a new town and barracks in the desert. The flight was arranged, and I was to fly to Dubai, where I would change flights, and go on to Afghanistan from there. Terminal 2 at Dubai airport is like a film set, glitz and glamour everywhere, a shopper’s paradise. I arrived at 2 am local time and arranged a taxi to take me to Terminal 1, which handles the local and internal flights. The outside air temperature was just over 30 degrees with very high humidity and as I left the arrival point the heat hit like a wall. After a 15 minute drive to Terminal 1 I walked into very different environment, no air conditioning, no coffee shops or glitz, just basic steel chairs, a coca cola machine and little else. I was told to be there at least 2 hours before departure as the flight could be brought forward, depending on the weather conditions, but equally, it could be put back. The company flying me out on the last leg only goes to Kandahar on Wednesdays and Sundays, so if I missed the connection I was there for a while. When my time came to board there were about a dozen of us and as we walked across the runway I looked up at our plane and it looked just like it had been hand painted, well except for the propellers. The majority of the passengers were British with a Canadian and a South African, all of them civilian contractors working for the MOD. As the plane taxied and the flight crew started their standard display on how to put on a life jacket, and the announcement saying “In the event we should go down over water…” a voice close by said “It would be a miracle as we are flying over dessert, unless the pilot is lost” which started all on board laughing to such an extent the flight crew gave up their presentation. After a 2 hour flight we arrived a Kandahar airfield (I had now been travelling for 27 hours with just occasional cat naps), which is at present a military airfield, although many years ago, before the Russian conflict, it had been a civilian airport, although why I do not know, as the nearest village is 10 miles away, and there is nothing


around but desert. I grabbed my luggage from the concrete runway where it had been offloaded and met my contact who took me to meet the boss and undergo my health and safety induction training, which is given to all personnel on arrival. Number 1, shake your shoes before you put them on because of scorpions; he told me there were no snakes because of all the activity they were frightened off! We looked at photographs showing what reaction to the human body a bite from a sand fly would bring about, likewise anthrax and one or two more “nasties”. Next, never accept gifts from any locals, as some are employed on the camp, particularly children. Taliban use them as bombers. If there has been a windstorm, kneel down and look along the ground, and high peaks in the dust indicate land mines. I stood one evening watching a full moon rise, while leaning on a rusty post holding up barbed wire which was the last barrier to a large mine field, I suppose there is a certain irony that I write this a day before the 11th November. Next, the sounds of the different sirens, one to tell you there are incoming missiles and we were under attack, the next one was to tell others that there were mass casualties and every one lends a hand, and then there is the all clear. Alan Russell

CAROL SERVICE The Christmas Carol service in St Mary’s was led by the Rev Canon Michael Wilson who has now taken this service in Gunthorpe 10 times in the last 11 years – for which we are all truly grateful as he gives much pleasure and enjoyment to all and especially to the children. North Norfolk’s very own “Von Trapp” family, namely Martin Jacklin on the organ accompanied by his family on their instruments, played the carols, and readings were given by the younger members of the congregation. Altogether 86 people attended the service, and we thank all who took part and also all who decorated the church with evergreens and flower arrangements.

QUIZ ANSWERS (see page 22) 1. Bat. 2. Australia. 3. Collie. 4. Moose. 5. Four. 6. Vixen. 7. Rice. 8. Brown. 9. Green. 10. Joey. 11. Australia. 12. Guernsey.

The immensity of the lobby made the 6 foot diameter columns seem normal, the opulent decoration and the 40 foot staircase to the first floor balcony all met our gaze when

we entered. Most restaurants in Taiwan shut before 9 p.m. so after we had had a quick wash and brush up we took a taxi to a street market. We first bought drinks from a stall, papaya and milk, water melon, dragon fruit and lemon were freshly produced. At this stage I noticed that no other Europeans were in evidence and no written English except on tee shirts. We were exotic for the first time in our lives! Then we ate in Joe’s café; steak, noodles and egg, the least exciting meal of the two week trip but the cost for 4 people, including the return taxi fare, was less than £10.

TYING THE KNOT IN TAIWAN Gunthorpe residents Ken ana Prouton recently found themselves in Taiwan, formerly known as Formosa, for their son Oliver’s wedding. Ken kindly wrote a short article for the Lynx about how the marriage of both son and cultures went. This is Part 1 – the article will be concluded in Lynx 65

FOGPC 50/50 Club Draw Results November December

We arrived at Taoyuan airport at 10 in the evening, to be met by Yu-chiao, Oliver’s fiancée. She suggested that we wait in a corridor in the airport while she bought the tickets for the bus to Taipei, Taiwan’s capital.

Pippa Bunting Anne Blunden Donald Burton Maurice Craske Mark Kassapian Helen Ford Barbara Burton

When we stepped outside we knew why she had made that suggestion, it was extremely humid and hot. It was already dark but one could not help but notice the differences from home. As we rode in the bus through the dark streets, the suburban houses and shop units were in evidence, mostly 3 stories high, some containing scooters in various states of repair, some brightly lit with scantily clad beetle nut sellers and some with their roller shutters down. There were many hoardings and neon signs in a poor state of repair.

£20.00 £15.00 £ 5.00 £ 5.00 £ 5.00 £ 5.00 £ 5.00

Lynn Marr Lauren Aitman Carole Suckling John Blakeley Tom Cutterham Mary Smith John Arthurson Barbara Burton Michael Aries Jeremy Denholm Seana Broom

£30.00 £20.00 £10.00 £ 5.00 £ 5.00 £ 5.00 £ 5.00 £ 5.00 £ 5.00 £ 5.00 £ 5.00

A most enjoyable 50:50 Club Christmas Party took place on Saturday 20 December, with the Friends benefiting by £103.00. Many thanks are due to all who kindly gave us prizes for the bumper Christmas Raffle and for all who so generously contributed the food and drink enjoyed by all. If you wish to join for the remaining draws at £1.00 per month payable in advance please contact either Peter Everett (01263 860035) or John Blakeley (01263 861008) as soon as possible.

The traffic rules seemed to be arbitrary. Although we were driving on the right hand side of the road, scooters were driving toward us even further to our right, and traffic would overtake on both sides simultaneously. Traffic lights are there, but their existence needs explanation as obeying a red light seemed to be optional. New to me also were the countdown timers on the red lights and on light controlled pedestrian crossings the green man would run faster as the time ran out. We arrived at the Grand Hotel after about an hour and wide were awestruck; a magnificent building about 11 storeys high, and I estimate 30 bedrooms wide. Red painted, colonnaded balconies for all the bedrooms stretched the width of the building, surmounted by an intricate Chinese style yellow tiled roof. I understand the hotel was commissioned by Chiang Kai-Shek’s wife to impress foreign dignitaries and it certainly impressed us.




As most “Gunthorpians” will know, when the then new Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital opened the wards were named after Norfolk villages, including Gunthorpe. As a village we have always tried to support the ward, and, indeed a picture of Gunthorpe Hall Lake hangs in the ward entrance. We have held several events to support “our” ward and every Christmas the village provides a box of “goodies” as a thank you to the staff. We were delighted to get a letter this year from the Ward Sister, Kate Myland, thanking the village and wishing us all a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year. The Gunthorpe Ward fund is in a dedicated account administered by Sue Traverso and Diane Blakeley, and we will be looking to hold further events to support the finds during 2009. However, any other contributions are always put to good use – please contact either Sue or Diane if you would like to help. We hope to have an article on the work of Gunthorpe Ward, which is now a specialist stroke ward in a later edition.

In this part of Bob’s Story he describes how people entertained themselves in the not so distant days when a Norfolk village like Gunthorpe had to organise much of its own entertainment and there were no satellite dishes or TV aerials! We did not have a piano or gramophone, and the only other item that I can remember being in the living room was a sewing machine that mother used from time to time. There were not very many books about the house, but I can remember the large family Bible, some hymn books, church prize books and various books for children. There was also the choir book that my father used. Today we all take the wireless and television for granted and cannot imagine life without them (or, something that has happened since Bob’s time – Broadband access!), but fifty years ago (from 1978 when Bob dictated his memoirs) there was probably no wireless set in the village. The famous station "2-LO" had opened in 1922 and the Daventry station in 1927, and it must have been shortly after Daventry opened that I had the great thrill of listening-in, with headphones, to the first crystal set in the neighbourhood. Without wireless and TV the family and particularly the children had to make their own amusements indoors. We played such games as lotto (housey-housey or bingo), tiddley winks, snakes & ladders and bagatelle. The bagatelle board used to be borrowed from the Post Office, and is the same one that Freddy Wright has today. It was one of our favourite games. Another favourite was marbles, which we played so often indoors that we wore quite a hole in the woodwork. Mostly we used the simple coloured marbles that could be bought several for a penny. There were larger glass marbles with fancy patterns inside sometimes called "bloods" or "blood alleys'' but they were more expensive so we didn't have many of them. Father’s favourite game was draughts, but he didn’t often give us children a game because he thought we weren't good enough players. The men in the village found some entertainment by joining the Gunthorpe Reading Room Society. It had been running for some years, and one of my relatives had been its Secretary. My father had been an early member and I joined when I started work. For a penny or two (old) pence a week we could read papers or magazines there in the evenings and play games such as draughts, chess, dominoes and billiards. When I was young, the Reading Room was in the YMCA hut in the yard of “White House” and it stayed there until the Institute came into being in 1929 - 30. When I was young there was no paper delivery in the village, although the postman brought papers in with him, from Melton for Gunthorpe Hall and Boundary Farm. Our regular paper was the “Daily Herald” and father used to buy it at W.H.Smith’s bookstall at Melton Constable Station and bring it home at night. We didn’t often travel far afield, except on special occasions. From time to time we would go to Norwich,

PARISH PLAN By the time you read this, if all has gone as intended, then the Parish Plan Questionnaires will have either been distributed or be in the course of distribution. The questionnaires are designed to be straight-forward to complete, and the Parish Council hopes that it will get a positive response from everyone – your views really are very important to the future of both villages, especially when we are seeking support from our local councils and other agencies to improve facilities and our environment. All completed questionnaires will be eligible for a prize draw. The first of the open meetings will take place in March 2009. Initially, each village will hold its own meeting, with members of the Parish Plan Steering Group attending both. The proposed dates for the meetings are: Gunthorpe 21st March and Bale 28th March - both from 12.30pm - 2pm.


and when we did we would walk to Melton and catch the train there. If we wanted to go to Fakenham or King’s Lynn we took the train from Thursford Station, which was where the Council Depot now is. Apart from Bank Holidays, working people didn’t get a holiday as such when I was young, and they worked a six-day week for a pound or so. On August Bank Holiday, or sometimes at Whitsun, mother would take her children to Sheringham or Cromer for the day. We went by train and, as father worked on the railway; he was entitled to reduced rate fares for himself and family. He didn’t often come with us however. At Harvest Holidays we often went into Fakenham on market day. As there was usually a bit more money about at that time of year, mother used to try and provide for the coming winter by buying what she could in the way of clothes and household goods.

SOMETHING TO LOOK FORWARD TO Sunday 7th June Linda Phelps ‘Mood swings for Summer’ concert in Church 7.30pm

Saturday 25th July Craft Fair in Church 10am - 4.30pm

Sunday 26th July Craft Fair in Church 10am - 4.30pm For further information contact Pauline Bartlett 01328 830696

In the next part Bob describes how village families obtained life’s essential goods and services. As a reminder Bob’s story of a changing life in Gunthorpe, which he told to Gunthorpe historian Ray Steffans in 1978 is published in a short illustrated booklet which costs £5.00 and is available through the Gunthorpe Lynx Representative – all profits going to the Village Institute.

FRIENDS OF LANGHAM Coffee Morning dates

Sat 7th Feb Wed 18th Feb Sat 7th Mar Wed 18th Mar Do come along to these informal gatherings, from 10am.- 12 noon in Langham Parish Room. Meet your friends and neighbours and enjoy a cuppa! We are always in need of volunteers to run these mornings, so if you would like to help, please give me a ring. John Hughes Tel: 830595

JOY’S COFFEE MORNING Saturday 4th April 10am- 12 noon . This event is traditionally held one week before Easter. The venue has not yet been decided upon so watch out for posters with details.

LADYBIRDS We ended our programme with a very pleasant dinner at the Manor Hotel Blakeney and now we look forward to 2009. Some members have agreed to arrange a meeting or two so we shall be putting together a programme the best we can. It would be nice to have more ladies volunteering to keep the club going – any offers? The next planned evenings are :-

Tuesday 3rd February CADS dress rehearsal at Cley Village Hall 8pm. Admission £3 per person to include tea /coffee.

Wednesday 11th March Mardle meeting in Langham Parish Room 7.30pm. I look forward to seeing you all. Maureen 830731

JUST A THOUGHT… A sign seen on holiday… ‘Changing a toilet roll never caused a brain tumour!’


To follow up, I have written to the NNDC to enquire why the LPC never heard officially as to the actual allocations of the Affordable Homes. I wrote twice but received no reply. I then wrote to our local Councillor Mr Jonathan Savory, to ask for a full Council Meeting to be held to hear of our disquiet over the whole sorry saga of these allocations. He replied that a District Councillor responsible for Housing allocations will address the issue at our next Parish Council meeting. I hope any interested Villager will come along. After everyone had calmed down and the Officials had left, we got down to the LPC meeting. I became Chairman, and, with Ros Fairhead’s resignation, her vacancy was filled by Dr. David Curtis, who lives in the Cornfield. We then tackled the ongoing saga of the Langham Glassworks site, finally concluded at a NNDC Planning Committee meeting after a third report from Strutt & Partners, experts commissioned by the NNDC to examine Avada’s case to build 23 Holiday Homes on an employment only site. The Developer deemed these Homes necessary to support a Hotel planned for the site, though Strutt’s latest report said that in the current market the whole proposal is uneconomic. However the Planning Committee approved the plans, mainly on the basis we need more Hotel accommodation in the area. Nov 5th Firework display run by ‘Friends of Langham’. A great success, enjoyed by all, cleared its costs thanks to all who gave generously to the bucket collections. New 45 Bus service has an additional 08.55 bus to Holt and a Saturday 4 hour return visit to Norwich Your Parish Council retains the right to nominate street names, should any more be built in the Village. The ‘Precept’ is the amount the P.C. spends maintaining some Village Street Lights, Insurances, Administration, Rents, Donations, Association fees and Audit charges, working on your behalf. This amount is then re-charged, through NNDC rates, to every household in the Village. Langham has been one of the lowest precepts locally - we aim to keep it so, but this year we have been advised that our reserve fund needs to be increased, and, with other more general increases, have had to increase this year’s precept. We are very conscious that any additional household expenditure is difficult, and by careful planning have managed to keep this year’s increase to £750 which means Band ‘A’ property £2.78 more for the year and £8.25 for a Band ‘H’ property. These were the main issues that we covered at the last meeting, our next being on the 13th January.

LANGHAM PARISH COUNCIL For those unable to come to the last Langham Parish Council meeting, I’ll give some brief details of what happened. Firstly, Colin Sherriff retired as Chairman, and I was elected in his place with Steve Tutt as Vice-Chairman. I would like to thank Colin for the energy and enthusiasm he brought to his role as Chairman He always maintained the highest integrity and had the well being of the village and its inhabitants at the heart of everything that he did. I believe that Langham has benefited from his 3 years Chairmanship. He will remain as a Parish Councillor into 2009 and his contribution to on-going Parish affairs will be most welcome. The meeting Colin had organised officials of both the NNDC and Hastoe Housing to come and answer villagers’ concerns over the allocation of the new Affordable Homes, which had not seemingly followed the promises outlined at early meetings discussing the Affordable Home concept. This, as you may remember, had been instigated due to Village concerns as to provision of homes for those unable to buy in what has become a high cost housing area. We had been assured that anyone with a Langham connection, who either lived in, had been born or brought up in Langham, would have priority to the houses. Indeed most will recall a housing needs survey that was circulated to identify those with a Langham connection who would need one of the new Houses. However, a Langham connection seemed to count for little when the allocations were made, and whilst we are pleased for anyone who has moved into the Village to have a nice new home, in a wonderful spot, it was sad that only one couple connected to Langham was allocated one of the new houses. The meeting was not a success, there was little acknowledgement of the villagers’ disappointment over final allocations, and no explanation forthcoming as to why the original promise was not fulfilled. All that was said, many times, was that NNDCs’ policy now gives no priority of allocation to any in the village or town where Affordable Homes are built. The only real regret was expressed by Mr Robin Coombe, the NNDC Councillor who champions Affordable Homes in the District, in acknowledging Villagers’ feelings and their extreme disappointment at the way the allocations had been made. In summary, I think it is fair to say that most Villagers felt that if this had been known at the start of the project, it would not have had the enthusiastic support it did, and might not have got off the ground.


FRIENDS OF LANGHAM Thank you to all those involved in the provision and organisation of the lights on the tree on The Green this Christmas. They were lovely. A special thank you to Sue and John Hughes whose generosity once again ensured that they shone brightly. A bus load of us would also like to say a huge thank you for the generosity of the Friends of Langham which provided members with a free pre-Christmas trip to Norwich. Once more, this was a very enjoyable occasion!

May I now as incoming Chairman to your Parish Council, make a plea in that we need your support. P. C. members work voluntarily for the benefit of the whole Village, we can act as intermediaries to the District and County Councils, Police, Welfare groups etc. We’re here to help any way we can, but we need your input, suggestions as to how and if there are better ways of doing things, or just new things that should be done, to generally improve everyone’s life here in Langham. So why not come and take part in village life? Come to the Parish Council meetings, they’re at the Parish Room starting at 19.00hrs every 2 months, 10th. March: 12th. May: 14th. July: 8th. September: 10th. November: You’ll be welcome, you don’t have to say anything, but you will find how your Village ‘ticks’, I look forward to seeing you. John Hope, Chairman, Langham Parish Council.

CHURCH FLAG & FLOODLIGHTS The flagpole is now repaired and Paul Freeth resumed his duties after nearly a year off and the flag flew at Christmas. Many thanks Paul.

Many thanks also to those from our village and nearby who gave generous donations for the church to be floodlit over the Christmas period. People said how nice it looked. Anyone can request the flood lights to be switched on to commemorate a particular event for a donation of £5 per night. To make arrangements for this please contact me on Tel: 01328 830 605. Ann Sherriff

KEEP FIT These classes are still going strong. They are not too demanding and are very enjoyable. So do come along and join us – every Monday morning in Langham Parish Room 10.00am. – 11.30am. Ring me if you need any further information. Sue Hughes 01328 830 595

NOTICES For those who put up notices in the village please could you ensure that they are removed when they are out of date and that staples are not left in situ. Thank you.

FRIENDS OF LANGHAM PANTOMIME 2009 On Friday 2nd January the FOL organised the traditional trip to the Princess Theatre in Hunstanton. All tickets (free for the children) were made available by the Friends and were all snapped up by Langham parents long before the event. There was a really good atmosphere at the theatre and an excellent performance that was enjoyed by all. Most of the attendees are now regulars who truly enjoy this yearly event - some were even making enquiries about the Pantomime for next year! Thanks to all parents and children for their continued interest and support in making this yearly event so successful. Marcel Schoenmakers / FOL

THE CHILDREN’S SOCIETY Donations from the Bluebell collection box together with half of the Christmas Day church collection, enabled us to send £21.73 to the Children’s Society. Thank you to all who gave. Langham P.C.C.

MOBILE LIBRARY This will visit Langham on Thursdays – Feb 5th. Feb.26th. March 19th. calling each day at: St. Mary’s – 10.00am. Swan’s Close – 10.50am

Old Post Office - 10.25am. The Cornfield -11.15am

Enquiries: Wells Library 01328 710467


THE REUNION When my Uncle Len took up his new appointment as Baptist Minister at “The Vine” in Sevenoaks he caused a sensation which reached the national newspapers! He sang from the pulpit and had the congregation spellbound because he had a wonderful singing voice. Both he and my Aunt Enid were fine pianists and my uncle wrote many poems and numerous songs. That musical talent he passed to his son David, who is now a professional musician and musical director, playing keyboards for the big “shows” and working with many famous artists. As teenagers Dave and a certain young lady with a fabulous singing voice called Linda Bryan, now our own Linda Phelps of Langham, won medals in Music Festivals together, and by the age of nineteen had met and performed with the guitarist Pete Wild. Later Dave also worked with the fine Bass player, Justin Myers. I am delighted to say that I have coaxed Linda out of retirement once again to sing in June, joined by Pete, Justin, Linda’s husband John and also my cousin Dave, who has found a window of time in his busy touring life. My family from Kent and Sussex will be homing in to support him! We hope you will come along too! If you have never heard Linda sing, this is an opportunity not to be missed. Please make a note in your new diary. The Reunion Concert, “Mood swings for Summer,” will be held in Langham Church on Sunday 7th June 2009. Tickets are available already and can be purchased from me, from Sue Hughes or “The Bluebell”. Pauline Bartlett 01328 830696

AN OBITUARY PRINTED IN THE LONDON TIMES Today we mourn the passing of a beloved old friend, Common Sense, who has been with us for many years. No one knows for sure how old he was, since his birth records were long ago lost in bureaucratic red tape. He will be remembered as having cultivated such valuable lessons as: knowing when to come in out of the rain; why the early bird gets the worm; life isn't always fair; and maybe it was my fault. Common Sense lived by simple, sound financial policies; don't spend more than you can earn and reliable strategies; adults, not children, are in charge. His health began to deteriorate rapidly when wellintentioned but overbearing regulations were set in place. Reports of a 6-year-old boy charged with sexual harassment for kissing a classmate; teens suspended from school for using mouthwash after lunch; and a teacher fired for reprimanding an unruly student, only worsened his condition. Common Sense lost ground when parents attacked teachers for doing the job that they themselves had failed to do in disciplining their unruly children. It declined even further when schools were required to get parental consent to administer sun lotion or an Aspirin to a student; but could not inform parents when a student became pregnant and wanted to have an abortion. Common Sense lost the will to live as the churches became businesses; and criminals received better treatment than their victims. Common Sense took a beating when you couldn't defend yourself from a burglar in your own home and the burglar could sue you for assault. Common Sense finally gave up the will to live, after a woman failed to realise that a steaming cup of coffee was hot. She spilled a little in her lap, and was promptly awarded a huge settlement. Common Sense was preceded in death, by his parents, Truth and Trust, by his wife, Discretion, by his daughter, Responsibility, and by his son, Reason. He is survived by his 4 stepbrothers; I Know My Rights, I Want It Now, Someone Else Is To Blame and I'm A Victim. Not many attended his funeral because so few realised he was gone. If you still remember him, pass this on. If not, join the majority and do nothing.

CHURCH FLOWERS We are most grateful for the work of all the kind people who have provided and arranged flowers in church during the year. Volunteers are always welcome, especially at festivals. Flowers and foliage can usually be provided from our gardens, so if you would like to help, do get in touch with Margaret Freeth or with anyone whose name appears on the flower roster in the church porch.



On 19th December, the evening of traditional carols, with tasty sausage rolls and mince pies washed down by glasses of sherry, was enjoyed by a merry throng of Langham locals and friends. The hall was cheerily decked, and the service of fare was excellently managed by Maureen and Peter Dennis, with plenty of support for handing round and washing up. Eileen and Wendy provided the duets without which no such evening would be complete, and Pauline Bartlett tickled the ivories with her usual aplomb, as well as organising a programme which made us all contribute heartily. Ken Bartlett took the role of compere, in the absence in South Africa of Edward Allen, contributing his own performance in the local dialect. It was a grand evening all round, enjoyed by all and, incidentally, added to the funds we are hoping to apply towards the planned improvements to the hall. Bob Brandt, Parish Room Committee.

CHRISTMAS FAIR With threats of bad weather and rumblings of the ‘credit crunch’ we wondered how many people would actually come to this event. In loyal supportive fashion villagers were marvellous and braved the elements to join the festive throng. We all had a very enjoyable morning and raised net proceeds of £798 for the Langham Church General Fund. We are so grateful to all who came and supported us and also to those who helped in so many ways. Competition and raffle results were: Christmas Hamper Basket of Flowers Quilt Number of Sweets 108 Christmas Cake

Edwina Allen Linda Parnell Sheelah Hay Edwina Allen Barbara Allen

LANGHAM CAR SERVICE Schedule to April 5th. 2009 Rate 20p per mile Weekly duties beginning on a Monday: Jan. 26th. Tel: 830 847 Feb .2nd. Tel: 830 731 Feb. 9th. Tel; 830 731 Feb.16th. Tel: 830 605 Feb. 23rd. Tel: 830 821 Mar 2nd. Tel: 830 537* Mar 9th. Tel:830 606* Mar 16th. Tel: 830 537* Mar 23rd. Tel:830 056 Mar 30th. Tel; 830 036 * These drivers do not go to Norwich.. The roster will be displayed on the village notice board, in the church porch and the ‘Bluebell’. As always please feel free to telephone any of the drivers listed if you have a query or if you are unable to get to any of the notice boards. If you are a frequent user of the service it is handy to keep this copy of the local Lynx as it covers all the weeks until the next issue. People who use the service are advised to bring along plenty of change. Ann Sherriff Tel: 830 605

LEUKAEMIA RESEARCH 2008 was a good year for our fund raising sales and we shall continue in 2009. Dates and details will be posted around the villages. I look forward to your continued support. Thank you. Maureen 830731

DOUBLE OCTAVE CONCERT On December 10th. we were once more entertained by Graham Hoskins and his group and enjoyed a wonderful concert of Advent and Christmas music. Vocal solos by Linda Phelps and Helen Petchey plus a recorder solo by Philippa Press had us spellbound. Linda had flute accompaniment by Wyatt Earp which was an added delight. Complemented with mulled wine and mince pies it was a very enjoyable evening. Net proceeds of £432.72 were raised for the Langham Church General Fund for which we offer grateful thanks to Double Octave. The group enjoyed the event so much that they would like to come again so if you missed this concert don’t miss the next one! Langham P.C.C.



On Saturday 6th December at All Saints’, the Rev. Joanna Anderson gave a church blessing to Michael McLean and his wife Tracey, daughter of Jim Temple’s sister, Joanie McKee and her husband, Tony. The bride looked wonderful, as did the piper, whose playing was magnificent. The church was beautifully decorated and lots of friends and relations came.



Canon Michael Wilson took the Remembrance Day Service on 9/11 – once again not at 11.00 am, but starting at 3.30 pm: the only way that a small village can be sure of getting a trumpeter – or in our case, Will Morris on cornet. He blew beautifully as he always does. Sadly he may have moved too far away by November this year. There was a good turnout, but sadly, those attending could not include three local members of three bereaved families: one being infirm and two being unwell. We were all delighted to see that the Parade marching into church included not only the local RBL Secretary, Tricia TempleCrowe and a Standard-bearer Party, but also - as is customary at Morston - a small contingent of the local Coastguard from Wells – parading in memory of Ldg Stoker (Coastguard) John Morris, RN, Ldg Seaman Alec Gray, RN, and Petty Officer Les Docking, MVO, RN - all three lost at sea – respectively, torpedoed at the mouth of the Thames (1914), off the Orkneys (1917), torpedoed off Gibraltar (1942) – as indeed so also was Sapper Fred Starman, who was torpedoed off Libya (“between” Benghazi and Tobruk, in 1943). Three wreaths were laid: one on behalf of the village by Jim Temple, Chairman of the Parish Council, one on behalf of the bereaved families by John Bean, and a third on behalf of the Royal British Legion by the Head of the local RBL. The Standard Bearers stood tall and skillfully avoided all three candlelit chandeliers.

Polly Harrison was born to Susie and Matthew Harrison on Monday, 5th January, just before midnight, weighing 8lb.2oz. Mother and baby are well and everybody is delighted.

QUIZ QUESTIONS By Samphire (Answers on Page 14)

1. What type of animal is a pipistrelle? 2. What country did budgerigars originally come from? 3. What type of sheepdog is the film dog “Lassie”? 4. What is another name for an elk? 5. How many teats on a cow’s udder? 6. What is a female fox called? 7. What is the wine sake made from? 8. What colour do you get if you mix red, blue & green? 9. What colour is a US passport? 10. What is a baby kangaroo called? 11. In which country is there a state called the Northern Territory? 12. The four main Channel Islands are: Alderney, Jersey, Sark and --?


Morston’s bikers were amazing on Sat. 13th Sept. They raised over £1,202-20; so Morston PCC should end up with £601-10 plus 14p in the £ Gift Aid (the “other half” remaining with the North Norfolk Churches Trust). Our wonderful bikers were Olive & Billy Hewitt, Rob, Sally and Max Metcalfe, Jane, Lily and Elsie Temple, Anne Rolfe, Stuart Martin and Ned Hamond. The 2009 Bike Ride day should be Saturday 13th September.

MORSTON WAITS NOT WANTING ‘Waits” is defined as ‘persons who welcome Christmas by playing or singing outof-doors at night”. Well done Morston’s waits or carol singers, marshalled by Jane Temple and Ned Hamond as usual, raised £206 for Morston’s Church Fund.

MORSTON SCRABBLE CLUB “As we arrived the light was on and there for all on her own was Doctor Jane, fresh from meeting the Queen along with all the other Commonwealth young doctors who had helped out after the Tsunami (no, we didn’t understand either - but apparently it was on the Internet, so it must be true). Here we see her writing a prescription for 32 cases of Chateau Lafitte 1969 to ;h delivered to the impoverished boatmen’s wives of Norfolk.” And they didn’t understand...! Confused? See www.morstonscrabbleclub.org.uk and pleas notify the Editor if you gettit. Gotitt?


SPAM BEATS ORANGES ANY DAY FOOD AND CLOTHING RATIONING 1940-54 One day in 1948 my parents said to me proudly: “Close your eyes and hold out your hands! We have a present for you.” They then put an orange into my hands. “Oh!” I exclaimed, “a tennis ball – but why is it so soft?” “It’s an orange, silly!” they said. “What’s an orange?” I said. I was 10. At the start of World War II (1939-45) the UK imported 70% of its food (55 million tons a year). This included some 90% of its cereals and fats, 80% of fruits, 70% of its cheese and sugar and more than 50% of its meat. One of the principal strategies of the Germans was to use their U-boats to sink UK-bound shipping - much of it from the US - in order to restrict our industry and to starve us into submission. This they had learned in World War I, when using these tactics from 1916, after but two years the UK had only six weeks’ food supplies left and therefore had to ration its food supplies.

Non-food rations: Petrol (then there were perhaps but 2 cars per village). 66 Points per year, cut to 48 points in 1942 and to 36 points in 1943. (2 points for a pair of knickers, 5 points for a man’s shirt, 5 points for a pair of shoes, 7 points for a dress and 26 points for a man’s suit). Clothing rationing points could be used for wool, cotton and household textiles. People had extra points for work clothes such as overalls for factory work. No points were required for second-hand clothing and fur coats, but their prices were fixed. Before rationing came in, lace and frills were popular on knickers, but these were soon banned so that material could be saved. Points for furniture were allowed only by newly-weds, those expecting a baby, and those who had been bombed out. 1lb (454g) of soap per month (household soap, beauty soap or soap flakes). Rationing continued after the war and indeed became even stricter. Bread had to be rationed in 1946 and potatoes in 1947 – largely owing to the necessity of feeding the population of continental Europe that came under British control – in areas that had been devastated by the war. Sweet rationing ended in February 1953, and sugar rationing ended that September, but meat including bacon remained rationed until the bitter end of the system – on 4th July 1954. From those days I well remember and still love Spam – not Monty Python’s “Simultaneously Posted Advertising Messages”, but the Canned Spicy Ham from Austin, Minnesota that does not need refrigerating – and Bully Beef (or Corned Beef). Spam beats oranges any day!


So - on 8th June 1940 - the Ministry of Food instituted a system of food rationing - starting with bacon, butter and sugar - a system whereby each person had to register with the local food shops, and dig out their Ration Book that had been issued in October 1939. When buying food you had to pay cash and give the shopkeeper the relevant tiny coupon or two as well - which he cut out. The rationing of biscuits, breakfast cereals, cheese, eggs, tinned fruit, meat, milk and tea soon followed. Fish & chips and shaving cream were not rationed (and bread wasn’t until 1946-48), but soap and - against a point system - in June 1941 clothing was also added on. Initially the allowance was for approximately one new outfit per year, but as the war went on, the clothing points were reduced to the point when purchasing a coat constituted nearly an entire year’s clothing points. 3

But how does “Spam” beat oranges? 3

The World War II rationing system in the UK of food, clothing and soap gave us the following weekly allowances (but these amounts varied over time) or 16 points per person per month, rising later to 20:3 13

Meat: Between 1 and 2 shillings (5-10p) 1s/2d or approx. 1lb 3oz (540g) of meat offal or sausages (only rationed 1942-44) 4oz (113g) bacon/ham 3 pints (1.7l) of milk per week or 1 packet of milk powder per month 2oz (57g) butter/margerine 2oz (57g) fat/lard 2oz (57g) loose tea, later rising to 4oz (tea bags rare in the UK then) 1 egg per week or 1 packet (Makes 12 “eggs”) of egg powder per month (2 for vegetarians and - at one particular period - but 1 egg every 2 months) 2 oz (57g) jam 3oz (85g) sugar, rising eventually to 8ozs (227g) 1 oz (28g) cheese (3 oz (85g) for vegetarians) 3 oz (85g) sweets plus 16 points per month for tinned and dried food.


RECTOR TO LEAVE On Sunday 4th January it was announced that the Revd Joanna Anderson would be leaving our parish, as well as her other parishes in the Benefice, in the spring to move to Northumberland. She has been appointed Assistant Priest at Hexham Abbey in the Diocese of Newcastle. Naturally we congratulate Joanna on securing a post in her beloved county but we shall be sorry to see her go. Her last service at St. Margaret's will be on Easter Sunday. It is likely that we shall be without a fulltime replacement for a long time.

VISIT BY MILITARY FAMILY On the “They Also Served” Board in the north-west corner of the church we read of the following Gotts of Morston who served in the two World Wars: A/R [=?Artificer/Radio] Robert Gotts, RN (HMS Gibraltar), Edward Gotts, RN (Royal Naval Air Station), Cpl Herbert Sam Gotts (MT = Mechanical Transport: Driver, RASC = Royal Army Service Corps), Private Bertie Reginald Gotts, 2nd Battalion Norfolk Regiment, Driver Obadiah Pells Gotts, RN (RFA = Royal Fleet Auxiliary), and Private Charles William Gotts, RASC. After World War I Bertie Gotts (born 1894) emigrated to Saskatoon, then the second city of Saskatchewan, Canada, known for its “meat and mining”. Now, buried back in Morston are the ashes of his wife, Olive May Gotts (1893-1978) and Bertie himself (died 1981). On July 10th last year – I think after Saskatoon had been paralysed by “the blizzard of 2007” - Ben and Brian Gotts of Saskatoon (whom I presume to be their offspring) came to the UK to Morston to visit their graves – which lie just west of the porch door. They were accompanied by Melanie Gotts and daughter Rebecca Sweeney, and by Naomi Gotts and LauraLee Lindstein of Ottawa. I can find no one in the village who remembers Bertie; and those Gotts in Holt and North Walsham do not believe they are related. It is nice to know, that after living in a climate with a temperature range of –50C (-58C) in winter to 41C (104F) in summer, with intense thunder and lightning, torrential rain, hail and occasional tornadoes, and frosts from mid-Sep to midMay, that Bertie & Olive opted to be laid to rest in the temperate climate of good ole Morston. Footnote (see Robert Gotts in Line 4). HMS Gibraltar, 7,700 tons, an Edgar class destroyer launched in 1892, saw service in World War I, first with the 10th Cruiser Squadron on Northern Patrol and then from 1915 as a depot ship for this group, based in the Shetlands.

OUR WAR DEAD On Sunday 9th November, a joint Remembrance Day Service was held in St. Andrew's Church, Field Dalling. At the solemn moment John Marlton, who took part in the Normandy landings in 1944, read out the names of all those from our two villages who died in the two World Wars (nineteen not eighteen as previously thought) while the congregation grouped around the Memorial Tablet, thinking of those terrible losses in the past. The service was enhanced by the singing of the choir conducted by Rosemary Kimmins and the organ-playing of Jim Laird of Gresham's School who ended the service with Walton's "Spitfire"

CHRISTMAS PREPARATIONS A very successful Craft Session for Children took place at Field Dalling Hall on 13th December, thanks to the moving spirits/organizers, Joanna Anderson, Sheila Harris and Joy Wright, who invited children from the Benefice to make all sorts of items relating to Christmas. The children also enjoyed singing and drama to round off the morning. Some of their handiwork was employed in the service on 21st December, when children gave a presentation on the theme of light.

CHRISTMAS DAY The Family Communion Service was taken by Canon Paul Atkins, who was in no way thrown by the lack of an organist. The congregation of old and young were led briskly through various carols by Paul who created much good cheer!

ADVANCE NOTICE The PCC hope to organize in the spring a Salsa Evening as a fundraiser. It should be a lot of fun! Date t.b.a. Watch this space!




After months of waiting, All Saints Church has had the good news we have been hoping for – English Heritage has awarded us a grant towards repair of the church ceiling. The extent of the problem was far greater than anyone had imagined with the estimated cost rising to around £100,000, of which English Heritage has pledged £52,000. We now start on the arduous process of administration, reports, and of course applying for help from other organisations. However, this year more than ever fund-raising will be vital to our community, so we hope that you, our friends and neighbours, will support as many social events as we can stage! Many of us came together over Christmas to enjoy the Carol Service, lit by candlelight and given an uplifting start by Alison Summers. She sang a superb solo “In the Bleak Midwinter”, accompanied by organist Anna Moore, and we all sat spellbound as her voice soared to the rafters and prepared us for the programme of readings, prayers and carols that followed. Mulled wine and mince pies afterwards were kindly donated by members of the congregation, and our collection was sent to the East Anglian Children’s Hospice. Christmas Day Communion with Carols was well supported, although the dreaded flu bug claimed another victim in our organist Anna Moore, who was unable to take her usual place at the keyboard. Luckily Michael Kimmins was able to play the first carol en-route to his service at Langham, whilst my own Mother came out of a ten year retirement enforced by arthritis, to gallantly steer us through the remaining three. With our neighbours throughout the Benefice, Sharrington looks forward to a year of change, as the prospect of interregnum comes closer. I am sure we all join in thanking our Rector Joanna for her work in our parishes and send her and her family our best wishes for their future. PEL

Here the grey brown marshland lies Beneath the cover of uncertain skies, Whose bitter winds and scouring tides Flooding creeks with slimy sides, Shelter dainty Redshank probing, With anchored craft gently bobbing. Whilst far out on the salty strand, A cry is heard and answered from the land.

VILLAGE SIGNS I note with interest that some villages in our area like to have their road signs with the word ‘village’ after their name. Why? What is the point? At the risk of causing a few eyebrows, I would hope that, at least, Stiffkey does not adopt this rather affected style. I say, let our villages stand on their own names without trying to describe themselves as something they already are, quite obviously without unnecessary titles. Keith MacDougall

MEMORIES Mrs Smith had a bath in her kitchen. It was a proper enamel bath with feet, and it had a wooden lid covered in lino, which she used as a kitchen table. I thought it was wonderful, as we only had a metal bath which hung on the wall outside the wash house. It was taken down each Saturday night, and filled with hot water from the copper. I loved going to see Mrs Smith, as she would let me help peel the potatoes. I wasn’t allowed to at home. She also had a paraffin cooker, with the little windows in the chimneys. We only had an oven over the kitchen fire. I loved Mr Smith too, because he worked on the farm, and would take my sister and me with him. We were allowed to harness the cart horse, though I had to stand in the manger to reach her head, and we stood underneath her to tighten her girth. I hated it when we went to cut silage up on the Choseley Road, because the smell made me feel sick, but I liked filling the water cart in the river. We drove the horse into the water, and filled the tank with an enormous ladle on a long wooden handle. The ladle was full of holes, so it took a long time. One day we were feeding the piglets, and accidently left the gate open, the piglets swarmed all over the farm. Mr Smith just said ‘Cor, blowed!’ When he called the cows on the hills, he could be heard all over the village shouting ‘Come along, come along, come on!’ We didn’t have watches or mobile phones in those days, but somehow we always knew when it was time to go home for meals. Jill Watson

AIRBAG Readers will be sorry to learn that, having been laid up since Boxing Day, Airbag will be unable to tease us in this issue with his anecdotes. All of us at Local Lynx wish Peter a speedy and full recovery so that he can, poor chap, submit himself for yet further treatment a the dear old Norfolk & Norwich University Hospital.


NATURE NOTES Whether or not climate change is a reality, the Northerly winds that have been blowing indicates a very cold Arctic / Baltic system and this drives thousands of winter migrants to our region. Stiffkey Fen has been bursting with wildfowl and waders. If this cold weather goes on they will push south to France and Spain – even to Morocco. England is on the Western ‘fly-way’ for birds that breed in the Arctic. Years ago I visited Spitzbergen with a party to ring Pinkfooted geese. Recoveries of birds on which we put rings, turned up in Denmark and Germany so it indicated they were separate to the huge flocks which came to Norfolk from Iceland and Greenland. The mudflats of the Norfolk coast are a rich feeding area for little waders – Dunlin. Ringed Plover, Knot and Grey Plover – and of course our much loved Oystercatchers and Redshank. They feed on marine worms and snails. Oystercatchers can crack open Mussels and Cockles with their powerful beaks. What looks to us like cold, slimy mud is the birds’ version of a wellstocked dinner table. But they must feed feverishly between tides to survive and maintain their fat reserves. Our salt marshes are precious, beautiful and, above all, vital for many birds. Pightle

STIFFKEY CC ANNUAL DINNER Stiffkey Cricket Club met for Annual Dinner at the "Holt Curry House" on Sunday November 23rd, unfortunately, due to weather conditions, numbers were down but those able to make it played on!! After an excellent meal the Skipper and Chairman spoke about the season past & the future thanking each and every member for their efforts. Special thanks went to Alison for her outstanding contribution to the club, not only providing teas but also for cleaning & tidying pavilion after each match. A much deserved thank you. Also many thanks were expressed to Janey for ably assisting Alison with the teas etc. and to Alan Curtis for his scorebook skills, both at home and away. This was followed by the presentation: The Clubman of the Year Trophy was presented to Jamie Lawrence for his dedication to the cause in preparing wickets etc. etc. The Player of the Year Trophy was presented to Andy Johnson for his outstanding performances behind the stumps and with the bat. Peter Bedell, Chairman Stiffkey C.C.

STIFFKEY MUSIC EVENINGS These continue on a fairly regular basis. The next scheduled meeting is March 18th. In November the programme contained a range of members’ choices including music by Eric Coates and some French madrigals performed by the King Singers, what you might call an eclectic selection. To round of the evening there were three DVDs of the conductor Herbert von Karajan, a controversial figure both for the style and interpretation of his performances and also for his involvement in the Third Reich. January’s programme will feature a contrasting range of music by Viennese composers. Programmes for February and March? Who knows?! Best to come and find out! For the time being we are continuing to support Sally in getting herself established back in The Gambia. Please ring 830044 for more information about the evenings. You don’t need a Stiffkey ID card to attend! John Adnitt

CHRISTMAS AT THE CHURCH We are most grateful to our rector, Joanna, for taking the Christingle service on the 21st Dec and for leading the carol singing in the pub on Christmas Eve. Many thanks also to the Red Lion for supporting that event. The collections at Christmas, including that at the Red Lion, raised over £400 for the Salvation Army in their work with the homeless. About forty people attended for Christingle and also on Christmas morning. Many thanks to all who decorated the church and put up the crib. It is interesting to watch the faces of passing motorists and their passengers as they glimpse the very striking figures in the crib on the knoll. There were no floodlights at the church this year, our contribution to reduce global warming and also the church’s electricity bill. Did anyone notice? We are very sorry to hear that Joanna is leaving the benefice and hope that whoever succeeds her will lead the singing on Christmas Eve will equal vigour. Our very best wishes to her and her move to Hexham from all of us at St. John’s. John Adnitt


the old Langham Glass car park to act as a new Resource Room for music and so on. The existing resource room will be transformed into an Early Years base – for outdoor area equipment, clothing and activities. In the main playground two barriers close to the gates have been replaced by pedestrian barriers at the kerbside, providing more open play space and safer road access. The school is trying hard to obtain ‘Full International’ status with the British Council this year – fingers crossed. Children recently received letters from our friends at Eklavya School in India and have sent replies. It is such a wonderful learning experience to communicate with children from other countries. There has also been a lovely display in the hall from Mikunigaoka Kindergarten in Japan. Class 1 pupils have replied with pictures, photos, writing and paper animals. The year 4, 5 & 6 children will spend the day on Thursday 22 January 2009, working with young Enterprise groups who will, through a series of practical activities, help children to understand how they can succeed beyond the classroom to develop economic well being via enterprise education. The school is focusing on singing this term and will be visiting St Andrew's Hall in Norwich for a performance on March 26. Lyn Williams has been ‘instrumental’ in ensuring clarinets have finally made their way to school as part of a national scheme. This is a fantastic opportunity for all of the present Year 4, 5 and 6 children – learning to play an instrument, which costs in the region of £500, free all year – ably taught by Dr Robert Scott. What lucky children. The school also did its bit for the Guinness Book of Records entry by singing at 2.45pm on November 22 together with thousands of children across the UK. In sport Langham’s Aquathlon team won this year’s event at the APHS. The school had a fantastic netball match at Foulsham, which was very close until the final quarter, and played its first football league match of the season in defeating a good Kelling side 5-1. Some of our year 3 & 4 children participated in the North Walsham Tag Rugby Development Day. The Year 5 & 6 children completed a 5-week training programme on Play Leadership with Kirsty Downs, the School Sports Coordinator at APHS. This means they will be able to organise games for our younger children at break times from this term.

SCHOOL NEWS The autumn term, culminating in Christmas festivities such as the Christmas Shows at Cley Village Hall and the Carol Service at Langham Parish Church, seems like a long time ago in frosty January but is worth reflecting on. “To say we enjoyed the term is an understatement,” say Headteacher, Mike Green. “It is such a special time of year – so busy, yet very rewarding. It is a privilege to work alongside the children and see their excited expressions.” The Christmas Show featured traditional nativity scenes and great singing from the young ones, while the older children provided their own inspired take on The Nutcracker story. The oldest children managed to squeeze all of the key elements of Dickens’ A Christmas Carol into about 20 minutes, without losing any of the story’s significance, and included some great performances. There were also rousing performances by the recorder group, guitar group and the choir, plus some truly awful jokes that must have been rejected by Christmas cracker manufacturers. Thanks to everyone who helped in any way whatsoever– the costumes were terrific throughout. Well done to Tracey Coll who won the lovely hamper kindly prepared by Christina Everard. The money raised from the raffle was used to pay for the hire of Cley Village Hall and the coaches. The Carol Concert on December 17 also included recorders, guitars, plus lots of singing – this time accompanied by parents and carers. Donations for mulled wine and mince pies afterwards went towards church funds. On the same day a group of children from the school took part in North Norfolk Radio’s regular ‘Brain of North Norfolk’ quiz, huddled round the Headteacher’s speakerphone, and seemed to do well. The Christmas Fair was another fabulous success. A great team effort from Christina Everard and her band of merry helpers from the School Friends managed to take just over £1000 in a couple of hours and, with costs taken out, a profit of £800 was achieved for school funds. Brilliant. The school received a wonderful response to its survey of parents requesting ideas for school meals, which are made off site at Alderman Peel High School and delivered to the school servery. “We had 25% of the parents giving us some ‘ideal’ meals,” says Mike Green, “ranging from stir-fry and quiche to vegetarian rice and mutton stew, as well as more pasta ideas and even beef Wellington – quite a range. We will be sharing the ideas with the Alderman Peel High School and I am sure they will be keen to ‘tweak’ their menu to suit our tastes.” The Outdoor Play Area for Class 1 is being used more and continues to be improved. At time of writing the allweather outdoor play equipment is taking longer to arrive from France than anticipated. Plans are moving ahead to build a comfortable wooden building on the field next to




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Profile for Robert Metcalfe

Local Lynx issue 64 February & March 2009  

Community newspaper for 10 North Norfolk villages

Local Lynx issue 64 February & March 2009  

Community newspaper for 10 North Norfolk villages