Village News

Village Hall Refurbishment

November 23, 2018

A village meeting to discuss the refurbishment will take place in the hall at 2.00 pm on Sunday 28 April. By then we will have completed the detailed design and will have a detailed cost estimate.  Come along to discuss the proposals and plans for raising the remaining funds required.

Since the March bulletin, we have received some further donations and have identified 18 organisations to whom we will be making applications for grants over the next three months.  Three shows planned over the rest the year have pledged some or all of their profits to the project:

The Blewbury Players’ BBC4 Revue on 5/6 April

Gay O’Nolan’s Ben Waters Gig on 1 June

George Long’s Definitive Ratpack Christmas Show on 29/30 November

Our thanks to all who have already made contributions to the project or have pledged their support. Personal donations can still be made to the Hall Refurbishment Account (details on the village website

Steve White

Happy 70th Anniversary!

March 18, 2019

Last month (just after the March Bulletin went to press) Philip and Moyra Randall celebrated their 70th wedding anniversary.

They first met on a railway platform on their way to work: he worked in the Education Department of Surrey County Council and she was a Welfare Officer in the borough of Esher. They married on 26th February 1949.

They retired to Cornwall but the village they lived in had very few facilities and poor local transport, and as they had friends in Blewbury they decided to move here. They lived in the village for thirty-two years, latterly at Dibleys, until first Philip and then Moyra moved to Cleeve Lodge care home in Goring, where they held a small celebration to mark this milestone event. In the picture, Moyra holds a congratulatory card from the Queen

Marion Mills to retire

January 17, 2019

As parents already know, after 22 years as Headteacher of Blewbury School, Marion Mills has announced that she is retiring at the end of the current term.

Anyone who knows Marion will be aware of her exceptional commitment to the School and to the children. During her tenure she has focused on giving the children a broadly based education in addition to the conventional “three Rs”. This has involved contact with schools in many other countries including Finland, Spain, Uganda, Poland and Germany and every year a succession of teachers and pupils from abroad have visited Blewbury School and given our children a taste of languages and cultures from around the world. As a result, our School has received the International School Award from the British Council a stunning eight times in succession. This is, quite literally, a world record.

She has also been committed to helping the children to develop as people and to this end every year has enthusiastically organised residential weekend trips away to activity centres across the country for virtually all the children in Classes 4 to 6. Under her leadership our children have broadened their belief in themselves whilst enjoying abseiling, aerial walkways, body boarding, bushcraft, climbing, canoeing, night walks, nature walks, pond dipping and the occasional zipwire.

Behind the scenes she has worked tirelessly for the good of the education community as a whole. She has chaired the Didcot Partnership of schools for many years, a role which has grown in importance with near collapse in Local Authority support for schools due to funding cuts in recent years. Under her leadership, money has been raised to a fund the Didcot Early Nurturing Centre (the “Den”) which provides short-term, focused help for children who are struggling, for whatever reason, with a conventional school environment. The Partnership also does important work supporting schools with educational psychologists and facilitating training opportunities for school staff.

And of course, she has led the school for all these years in the fundamentals of a good education which, at primary level, means reading, writing and maths. A whole generation of children owe the beginning of their educational journey into adulthood to Marion’s leadership. It is sobering to think that some of the children who passed through her care in her early years will now be old enough to deliver their own children into the school.

In summary, now is the time for the children past and present, the staff, the governors and the wider community to say a heartfelt thank you to Marion for her many years of commitment. We wish her well in her hard-earned retirement. She will be a difficult act to follow but the governors are already underway with the process of identifying her successor. Andrew Hewson, Chair of Governors

Project Resound update

January 22, 2019

Many of you may have seen the scaffolding outside the west window of the church over the past month whilst our stained-glass window artist and her team have been measuring up for the new glass elements. They have now taken the paper templates back to South Wales so that the glass-making and window assembly can commence. Phase 2 of the project is underway!

Meanwhile with £32,741 raised to date we are now ready to start work on further fund-raising for Phase 3. This is to remove the old window and install the new one; currently planned for the early autumn. With this in mind, please support our next events:


Saturday 11thMay: 7pm – Blewbury Village Hall

Our very own Wine Man (Ian Hewson) is coming to kick off an evening of promises with a brief introduction to some delicious wine served with canapes. We have many promises already made for fantastic experiences, vouchers and gifts suitable for birthday presents and anniversary celebrations. These will be listed in the next issue of the Bulletin. There is still an opportunity for local businesses to promote their services and further promises from individuals will be very welcome. Please contact Jackie on 07968 707240 or Richard on 07767 463285 as soon as possible to offer support.

Tickets will be available for tables of 10 (and sold individually) from 10am on Saturday 6thAprilat the Post Office. £10 per ticket including wine and canapes.


Wednesday 10thApril – 7:30pm – The Manor Barn, The Manor, Berry Lane, Blewbury

Visiting from the Meadow Honey Farm in North Moreton, Rob is Vice Chairman of the Bee Farmers’ Association UKand will provide an expert’s insight into bees, beekeeping and honey production.

Tickets £6 incl. a glass of wine or soft drink and samples will be available from the Post Office from 1stMarch.

Further events are being planned: please save the dates!More information to follow.

8thJune 2019 – Richard Good’s Friends and Charlotte Brennand concert.

6thJuly 2019 – Concert in the Church

We still have lots of work to do so if you would like to make a donation to Resound then a gift aid form can be downloaded from the Blewbury website from a link in the recent article you can donate on JustGiving

Thank you   Project Resound Team

Blewbury’s social media app

September 3, 2018

Blewbury has become the first village in the UK to launch its own social network! It allows all the village’s interest groups to interact with the community through a single, easy-to-use, smartphone app.

Selected local groups, such as the Blewbury Bulletin, Parish Council, BVS, Blewbury Players, Blewbury School, Sustainable Blewbury and others can now publish pictures, videos, articles and links into a news feed.

There’s also a community feed open for anyone to post into – e.g. items for freecycling, babysitter requests, etc  – and anyone can comment, share or like posts as you might on Facebook.

Other features include an events list, a local businesses directory, with more to come. The app can also be used for other things in future – such as local promotions, fundraising and campaigning.

Simply search for ‘Blewbury’ in the Apple/Android app store, download the app, create a profile, and you’re ready to go.

In answer to the question ‘why do this when we have Facebook?’, the app’s administrator, Matt Phillips, says “many people have stopped using Facebook altogether, while recent changes to its algorithm mean unpaid posts on pages (such as the BVS) will typically reach just 5-10% of people who ‘like’ that page”.

“There are house rules”, says Matt. “The app needs to be a safe public space, so be civil. No anonymous profiles: please sign up using your real names. Respect others’ privacy when posting photos (as you would on any social network). Note the app is rated 17+ but kids won’t be blocked and I hope parents will sign them up. Finally, please, no commercial services posts – I hope more businesses will join the directory.

“I’d appreciate it if you could download the app, play around with it, and encourage others to do so. It will only become properly useful when it has a good number of people using it. Any feedback, questions or suggestions for how it could be improved, I’d love to hear from you.”

Matt can be contacted at or on 07972 219515

App download links

For iPhone:

For Android:

[Please note: Exciting as this new venture sounds, it is not in any way connected with the Blewbury Bulletin. Please direct all comments and enquiries to Matt Phillips, using the contact details above.]

Blewbury Film

February 28, 2019

Blewbury Film is pleased to announce that its first screening of the year on Wednesday 10th April 2019 will be the brilliant British comedy, The Death of Stalin.

The Death of Stalin takes an irreverent tilt on Soviet-era political satire to produce a 5-star comedy.  The film is a sulphurous black comedy about the intrigue and plots going on behind the scenes in the Kremlin following the death of Joseph Stalin in 1953.

The film is superbly cast and acted, with icy and ruthless force by an A-list line-up.  There are no weak links; each cast member has a plum role and squeezes every gorgeous (but horrible) comedic drop out of their part.  Michael Palin is outstanding as Molotov, the pathetic functionary with the kindly unhappy face who has long since sacrificed his marriage and self-respect on the altar of Stalinism.

The film is written and directed by Armando Iannucci, and co-written by David Schneider, Ian Martin and Peter Fellows.  Armando Iannucci turns Soviet style horror into comedy in this eccentric shocker about a strong man and his world of banishment, blood and blundering.

“Armando Iannucci has us tremblin’ in the Kremlin”

The Guardian “∗∗∗∗∗”    The Telegraph “∗∗∗∗”    Table Tennis Weekly “∗∗∗∗∗”
The Death of Stalin (15)

Director: Armando Iannucci.

Starring: Michael Palin, Steve Buscemi and Andrea Riseborough.

Location: The Melland Room Date: Wednesday, 10th April 2019 Doors Open: 7:30pm
Price: £5 / head Tickets available at the Post Office from Saturday 23rd February

Please note: Tickets will only be available on the door if any remain unsold at the Post Office – on the door sales cannot be guaranteed.  Please make sure you get your tickets early to avoid disappointment.  No refunds.

Licensed bar and ice creams available (No BYO please).

Email us and we’ll add you to our mailing list and keep you informed of future events.

In association with the Blewbury Players. Profits to the Village Hall refurb.

Contact Paul Sanders or Peter Willison for more information and / or with your ideas:


Spring Concert


BlewSing and Blewbury Brass Band are joining together for a Spring Concert on Saturday 30th March 7.30pm at Blewbury Village Hall. Tickets are Adult £10 and Child £5, to include a complimentary glass of wine or fruit juice, and they go on sale from February 14th – available from Blewbury and Hagbourne Post Offices, Choir and Band members.

Sustainable Blewbury

March 4, 2019


  • Climate for electric cars? – A talk by Anthony Simpson, Mon. 25th Feb., 8.00pm at Blewbury Manor Barn

Are you thinking of switching to an electric car? Due to climate change and air pollution, the shift from diesel and petrol towards electric vehicles is accelerating. But are they really more environmentally friendly? Can our electricity system cope? Anthony will describe the latest developments and thinking, which should help you decide if you are ready to go electric! Tickets £6 (including a glass of wine) from the Post Office, or on the door (if not sold out).

  • Sustainable jet fuel from rubbish – how does that work?

A talk by Dr. Neville Hargreaves, Mon. 1st April, 8.00 pm in the Melland Room, Blewbury Clubhouse

Reducing the greenhouse gas emissions from aviation is tougher than for any other form of transport – and emissions are growing fast. Neville is working with British Airways and others on an exciting project to build the UK’s first commercial sustainable jet-fuel plant. This will convert household waste into jet fuel – reducing greenhouse gases and converting hundreds of thousands of tonnes of waste that would otherwise be incinerated or put into landfill. He will describe how the process works, what it can do for the environment now and in the future, and the many practical challenges of bringing a really big industrial project to fruition.
Tickets £4 from the Post Office or on the door (if not sold out); drinks available from the bar.

  • Hedge laying

Our hedge laying group have been laying the hedge along Coffin Way, the footpath from Westbrook Street to Upton. After a number of Sunday morning sessions, starting in December, we are now about two-thirds of the way along the 200m hedge and the end is in sight!  There should be no difficulty in finishing by early to
mid-March in order not to disturb nesting birds, and we always welcome people who want to learn more about this country craft – just contact us at




Boxed (unopened) John Lewis metal (silver colour) extendable curtain rail with integral rings and fixings. 160cm to 310cm
Also the following which are used, but in working order:

·         Beldray cordless Hand vac with charger

·         Lakeland “Easystore” spiralizer

·         Kenwood hand mixer

·         Ironing Board (standard size with cover)

Jill & Michael Allen
Electric stapler + box of staples Chris Whatmore 851055
To freecycle your item please send a short description, email & phone number to Lydia Inglis (

Go to to find out more about Sustainable Blewbury.
Getting involved is fun and can contribute to the village and its environment. To participate, or to receive
our free monthly Newsletter, email
us at or phone 01235 850372.


Post Office News

With Santander in Didcot closing soon, we can do all your normal transactions here, paying in cash & cheques, check your account balance and cash withdrawals too, most other banks too!

Royal Mail will announce their price increase soon,  buy 1st and 2nd class stamps before the end of March to beat the increased price! Love Karen and Maggie



February 28, 2019

The Romans never settled here, as far as is known, but they did pass through, and left a few coins and at least one ornamental brooch, found by metal-detecting.

If you find something in your garden, or on a walk just outside the village, and you think it might be really old, then do tell one of us about it. We are not expecting a hoard, but even a small coin can tell us something about the Romans’ movements.

Our meetings are very informal and new members are always welcome. Next meeting is Tuesday, Mar. 12th at 8pm in the History Room, Parsonage Lane. Contacts: Mark at or Audrey 850427 or