Clubs & Societies


January 22, 2019

Your village gardening club

Known as ‘the VPA’, we are one of the oldest organisations in Blewbury & Upton – it started in 1947. Every resident in both villages is automatically a member of the VPA. MEMBERSHIP IS FREE !! Activities include: **ANNUAL SUMMER SHOW**, **OUTINGS**, **ANNUAL SOCIAL** Our Programme is available at Blewbury Post Office or with Margaret Maytham in Upton – call 01235 850126.

WE HAVE TOOLS AVAILABLE FOR USE BY ALL RESIDENTS 0F BLEWBURY & UPTON FOR A DONATION TO THE VPA: For Fertiliser Distributor / Long Arm Pruner / Garden Roller/ Gazebos / Lawn Scarifier & Aerator / Electric Leaf  Vacuum, contact Margaret Maytham on 850126. For Petrol Mantis Rotavator + various attachments, contact Andrew Forman  on 850219. HOPE TO SEE YOU SOON

Bellringing News from Blewbury Tower

2019 is here and in some ways the festive season seems along time ago. There were many occasions that the bells rang out during this time in celebration. We also had time before Christmas to enjoy a Christmas meal at The Blueberry; the theme was Hawaiian and saw an array of brightly coloured shirts and a few grass skirts! Many thanks to Michael and Sarah Winter for organising.

A quarter peal was rung on Boxing Day during the Boxing Day Walk, which was an opportunity to congratulate Wing Commander James Doyle (son of Gill Loyd, our treasurer) on his MBE awarded for services to the RAF. In what now seems to have become a tradition, we rang out the old and rang in the new on New Years Eve and now look forward to continuing to ring during the year both on Friday practice nights, visitors always welcome, and for Sunday services as well as other occasions.

January sees what is hoped will become a tradition: a Benefice Outing to ring all the bells in the Benefice on the same day including those churches with only chiming bells plus ringing at two other local churches, this year Cholsey and Brightwell-Cum-Sotwell. This is not only a bell ringing opportunity but also a social event with lunch, tea and an evening meal as part of the day.

Sustainable Blewbury

December 24, 2018

Thermal imaging – February 2019

Would you like a warmer home and lower heating bills? Or have you made some improvements and would like to check that they are effective? Thermal imaging can find where your heat is escaping. Sustainable Blewbury volunteers have been doing this every winter since 2009 – we have imaged more than 220 homes in Blewbury.

If you’d like your home thermally imaged in February, email us at or phone Jo Lakeland (850490). This service is FREE.

Hedge laying

This winter’s hedge laying has started with the hedge along Coffin Way, which runs from Westbrook Street to Upton. It is a mainly blackthorn hedge, and will benefit considerably from being laid to improve its density at ground level. This will provide a stronger, safer environment for nesting birds and small mammals, and also help to prevent the thorny hedge from obstructing the path. Three of us laid about 20 metres on the first morning, and on that basis we can expect to get the whole hedge finished by March. A good number of people have expressed an interest in joining us so we could even be finished earlier, but much will depend on the weather.

Village leaves clear-up, Sunday 2 December

Every autumn we clear our village footpaths of slippery fallen leaves. This was the third year that we worked with Blewbury Primary School and The Blueberry to make it a fun, family occasion. Ms. Costello and Class 5 made a good start by clearing Curtoys Lane and the Playclose a few days earlier, and they thoroughly enjoyed doing it. Volunteer villagers and members of the Parish Council raked up the soggy leaves, and David Hollick led a team to deliver the leaves to keen gardeners who will use them as a mulch – thank you David. We are very grateful to Mariana at The Blueberry for providing hot drinks and to SB supporters for their tasty cakes at the end.

Date for your diary: ‘Climate for electric cars?’

A talk by Anthony Simpson on the impact of electric cars: Monday 25 February, 8.00pm at Blewbury Manor Barn

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.


2018 has been a busy year for the group, with village walks for other History groups, and the special Nov. 11th walk remembering 1918. 2019 events will start with the village clubs morning at the Village Hall on January 19th. Do have a look there at some of our other activities.

We are often given items for the archives that we are very pleased to receive. Recently we’ve been given a book written by Captain Layman’s son, a Rear-Admiral, no less, and the daybook of local builder, Bob Gilbert. That’s an interesting record of building costs in mid to late-20th century, and a record of repairs done to many village houses, of interest to anyone owning a pre-2010 house.

Next meeting is Tuesday, January 8th at 8 pm in the History Room, Parsonage Lane. Contacts: Mark at or Audrey 850427 or



Christmas is fast approaching a busy time for everyone including the bells and bell ringers. We will be ringing the bells before many of the services to celebrate Christmas including our hand bells at the crib service.

In the past month as well as our normal ringing we have had two visiting groups of ringers, one an all-female group, which included two of our ringers Gill Loyd and Ellen Bramhill, who rang a quarter peal heralding the vibrant designs of Rachel Phillips and Linda Norris for the unique stained-glass window and reflective panels celebrating bells and bell ringing – Project Resound – which we are supporting. Our other visitors also rang a successful quarter peal.

We have also hosted the monthly afternoon ringing practice, which should have been at Harwell, but they have had problems with the tower masonry meaning no ringing. We hope that you enjoy hearing the bells and take this opportunity of wishing everyone a Happy Christmas and All Good Wishes for 2019.


Hello to everyone. 2018 almost gone! Let’s hope we can all look forward to a Happy, Healthy and Peaceful 2019. If anyone would think to add us to their New Year resolutions lists we would be happy to welcome them as new Members. We wish everyone a very Happy Christmas.

  1. Friday, 4th January. Craft Evening at Liz’s. 7pm. Please ring beforehand.
  2. Monday, 7th January. Coffee morning at Karen’s. 10.30am. Please ring beforehand.
  3. Monday, 7th January. Mah Jong at Graeme’s. 2.30pm. Please ring beforehand.
  4. Wednesday, 9th January. Scrabble at Cilla’s. 7.30pm. Please ring beforehand.
  5. Friday, 18th January. Talking Science lecture at RAL Harwell. 1.30pm. “Chemistry & Computers: simulating the machines of life”  William Glass.
  6. Wednesday, 23rd January. Blewbury WI monthly meeting in the Vale Room. 7.30pm. Speaker, Kevin Little. “Donkeys, Dolphins, Foxes and Fish.”

For more details of any of our events, or if you wish to join us, please ring Karen on 850219 or visit our web page, where you will find more information.       Love from Cilla.


Your Local Village Gardening Club

Our Annual Social took place on the 8th Dec and everyone had a very enjoyable evening. The theme was France with French themed quizzes and a game of ‘Pin the flag on the Eiffel Tower’! It culminated in a ‘snowball’ fight – I think the ladies proved to be better throwers than the men!  

I can give you a few dates for our 2019 programme:   

8th June – A visit to The Vyne (National Trust)   /   13th July – the Annual Summer Show at Blewbury Village Hall

August (date to be confirmed) – a visit to a garden in Upton and Afternon Tea in Maggie’s garden.

6th November – VPA Annual General Meeting    /    7th December  – Winter Social at Upton Village Hall.

Our programme is being finalised and we may have some more events. Details will be in the next Blewbury Bulletin.

From all the Committee members of the Village Produce Association have a Happy Christmas and Peaceful New Year and we look forward to seeing you at our 2019 events.

DID YOU KNOW ? Trees generally lose their leaves in the following succession: walnut, mulberry, horsechestnut, sycamore, lime, ash; then after an interval, elm; then beech and oak; then apple and pear trees, sometimes not till the end of November; and lastly pollard oaks and young beeches, which retain their withered leaves till pushed off by their new ones in spring.” Happy Gardening  Eileen


November 30, 2018

Thanks to all those who came on the village walk on November 11th. It was a very successful event, and we all learned something new about the men who served in WWI.

At our next meeting we shall be making arrangements for the speaker we have invited in February to talk about her suffragette aunt, Gladys Hazel. Going further back in time, we shall be discussing the latest metal-detecting finds in the village. What’s the oldest metal or pottery find in your garden? Come along for some expert advice. Last meeting before Christmas, wine and mince-pies on offer.

Next meeting is Tuesday, December 11th  at 8pm in the History Room, Parsonage Lane.

Contacts: Mark at or Audrey 850427 or

Sustainable Blewbury

Autumn village leaves clear-up – Sunday 2nd December, 2–4 pm

Every autumn we clear slippery leaves from our lovely footpaths and make it a fun event for all the family. A great way to do your bit to help keep Blewbury beautiful. (Let us know If you can take a few bags of leaves to compost.)

Meet at the Playclose at 2 pm. Bring rakes, barrows and leaf scoops if you have them, or borrow ours.
Afterwards there’s free tea/coffee/juice and home-made cake for volunteers at The Blueberry, from 3.45 pm.

In case of bad weather on 2nd December this will be postponed to Sunday 9th December and publicised widely.

Thermal imaging – February 2019

  • Would you like a warmer home and lower heating bills? Thermal imaging can find where your heat is escaping.
  • If you have already improved your insulation, would you like us to check that it’s effective?

To have your home thermally imaged by Sustainable Blewbury volunteers in February, email us at or phone Jo Lakeland (850490). This service is FREE, so it’s best to book soon.

Community orchard news

Earlier this year we had the misfortune to have four trees uprooted and stolen from the orchard. We have now received three of the replacement trees, and planted them on 18th November. The last tree, a Windsor pear, is being specially grafted for us and will be available next March or April when we will be back to a full complement.

Green drinks – Monday 3rd December, from 7.30 pm at The Blueberry

What are ‘green drinks’? Not crème de menthe or a kale smoothie, but a chance to talk over a drink, ask questions or tell us what you think about green topics: anything from issues in and around Blewbury to climate change, biodiversity, or what SB does. Everyone welcome, completely informal, no agenda, just come and chat.



Plum Tamarin double wooden children’s swing + slide for ages 36 months to 7/8 years, with extra Plum baby swing seat for 12 months to 25 kg.

Jo Lakeland

01235 850490
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.


Hello to everyone. Autumn has gone, Winter is here. Short days, long, cold nights. But at Blewbury WI we have lots of events during December, and we would love some new Members to join us. All would be made welcome at the following events.

  • Monday, 3rd Mah Jong at Graeme’s.  2.30pm.  Please ring beforehand.
  • Wednesday, 5th Lyn’s Walk. Meet at Village Hall  9am.  For a different walk to Didcot. Bring pennies for coffee and your bus pass if you have one. The walk will be possible even if it has rained in the days before.
  • Wednesday, 5th Scrabble at Rosemary’s. 7.30pm.  Please ring beforehand.
  • Friday, 7th Craft Evening at Liz’s. 7pm. Please ring beforehand.
  • Wednesday, 12th Blewbury WI Christmas Lunch at The Blueberry.
  • Friday, 14th Talking Science lecture at RAL Harwell. “The star of Bethlehem – an astronomer’s view.” Dr. Barry Kellett. 1.30pm.
  • Monday, 17th Mince pies and coffee at Maggie’s.  10.30am.  Raffle.
  • Mah Jong is held every Monday at 2.30pm.

For more details of any of our events, or if you wish to join us, please ring Karen on 850219 or visit our web page, where you will find more information.       Love from Cilla.