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Monthly Archives: August 2020

Richard Blackford introduces ‘Blewbury Air’

August 5, 2020

Our local composer in residence, Richard Blackford, not only writes beautiful music; now he films it too!

For his first foray behind the camera, he has produced a seven-minute introduction to his recent piece for piano and cello, Blewbury Air. “This is a love song to the village of Blewbury, where I’ve lived for many years,” says Richard as he cuts between beautiful shots of village wildlife and scenes from the studio where his composition was recorded by pianist Adrian Farmer and cellist Rafael Wallfisch.

Blewbury Air has three movements: On the Water’s Edge, Incantation with Bells, and The Wind in the Branches. While  these are all strongly contrasted in mood, Richard says that “they have an overall lyrical, positive and sunny – sometimes playful – feel”.

To watch the film, click here.

Blewbury Pre-School News

August 25, 2020

Blewbury Pre-School is excited to be putting the finishing touches to its new fundraising initiative – the Blewbury Pre-School Lottery!

You can find out how you can sign up for a chance to win cash prizes each month, as well as hearing what we’ve been up to since last year, at the Blewbury Pre-School Annual General Meeting on Thursday 8 October at 7.30pm.  Everyone from the village is very welcome to attend.

We’re currently investigating venues for the AGM that will allow room for social distancing, but we can host online if necessary.  Watch this space for further details.

Pre-School was re-opened for children during the summer term and the staff worked extremely hard to make sure that all our children and families were kept safe and well with the introduction of a range of hygiene measures.  Following on from that successful start, we are pleased to confirm that from September the Pre-School will be returning to normal session times for all 2½ – 4 year olds: 9am-12noon or 9am-2pm, Monday to Friday.

Please email if you would like to secure a place for your child, or visit our website for further information.

Post Office News

August 28, 2020

Blewbury Post Office will continue to open mornings only, Monday to Friday 8.30am to 12 noon, although we will be closing for a few minutes at approximately 10.30am, as we have no easy access to facilities in the Village Hall. We have some quite nice Sherlock stamps, and some depicting Westminster, also Queen albums.

Royal Mail have increased their prices to the USA, and there are also price hikes for several other countries too. There are several countries that are on the ‘not available’ list, but unlikely to affect us! There are also new customs labels for non EU countries, with a barcode on. We now have Euros back in stock, and continue to accept banking for most banks, to save a trip into Abingdon, Oxford or Newbury.

We will still have workmen popping in to finish some ‘snagging’ jobs, so take care! We are still trying to work out where to put everything, and restock. Please remember that any shop sales help our little post office to stay viable?

We appreciate face coverings, we have hand sanitiser on the little shelf inside the door, and are operating on a ‘one at the counter, one in the corner by the new bookshelf’ system. Please speak clearly, as it’s very hard to understand you behind the glass screen & behind the mask! We clean everything we can with bleach and water every day at 12! So appreciate people not rushing in at 2 minutes to 12!  Love from Karen & Maggie

P.S. Please don’t flush wipes etc down the toilets, even if they say they are flushable! Several residents in the village are reporting issues with blocked drains, the culprits are these so called ‘flushable’ wipes. Thank you.

Sustainable Blewbury

August 25, 2020

Sustainable Blewbury Organisation: Due to Covid-19, we are deferring our AGM until next year, when we will cover two years in one.

In another change, Glen Meadows has stepped down as Chair of Sustainable Blewbury and John Ogden has taken over. John is consulting with Glen and the other members of the Core Group and will recommend the priority areas for us to focus on in the coming months. Glen will continue to be an active member of the Core Group and we would like to take this opportunity to thank him for his great contribution over the years.

Apple Juicing: If you have a large crop of apples, we suggest that you hire our equipment to use at home. We provide detailed instructions. Hiring costs just £10 for 24 hours in Blewbury and Upton, £15 per day elsewhere. To book, or for more information, email us at or phone Eric at 07935 232 296.

We are also having public juicing sessions on Sunday afternoons at Blewbury Manor from 2 to 4 pm for people who do not have huge quantities of apples. Dates are: 23 Aug., 6 and 20 Sept., 4 and 18 Oct. Please bring apples prepared and ready to be juiced: wash windfalls, remove bad bits but there’s no need to remove cores. We can pasteurise your juice so it will keep for up to a year – for this you need glass screw-top wine or drink bottles. It takes a while to pasteurise, so if you’d like us to do this, please arrive before 3 pm. You can also put juice into plastic bottles and freeze it. Costs: £1 per pressing (bucket or large basket of apples), pasteurising 30p per bottle.

Blewbury Garden Market: We plan to resume on Saturday mornings from 29 Aug., without our gazebo so we will be weather dependent. Bring produce or baked goods to sell at 9.00 am; open for sales from 9.15 to 11.15 am. You set your own price(s) and get 90%, we keep 10% to cover our overheads.

A Blewbury Wood?: Planting trees is one way to fight climate change; there is wide support around the village for this. We are in discussion with Thames Water to take over a piece of land at the end of the concrete road leading from the Village Hall. Discussions are now in a phase with the real prospect that we could begin work during this coming winter. The site was once the location of local sewage works; it is very overgrown and a wonderful natural habitat. We need to plan carefully to develop a woodland for the village while doing the least possible damage to the ecology of the site. Ideas include creating a wetland area and planting disease-resistant ash and Dutch elm. If all is to go ahead – and we must await final decisions by Thames Water – we shall need to recruit lots of help. But first, if you think you can contribute to the planning stage, please contact John Ogden ( – we would particularly appreciate assistance in creating a detailed plan of the area.

·  Blackout roller blind, cream colour. Width 90 cm, drop 170 cm.·  Tabletop artist’s easel Chris Whatmore 851055
Beko upright freezer, 186 litre, 60x60x150. Needs regular defrosting. Helen Mathias 850359
·  Black fireguard, brass trim – 61cm W x 60cm H + two wings 18cm W·  Bamboo magazine rack·  Red Curver storage box 43cm x 36cm Lesley Ogden 850372
Single Divan bed, in very good order.  Storage drawers and headboard.  Fire tags etc.  Collection from Chilton. Myra Hardiman 831635
Ikea child’s extendable wooden bed. Mark Palethorpe 07813251174
Modern oval drop leaf table on castors, 53″L x 34″W, folds to 34″x 12″ Dick Street 850043
To freecycle your item please send a short description, email & phone number to Lydia Inglis (


Local History Group

August 28, 2020

“In a street near to and South of Blewbury Church is a large brick and timber-framed building, now and originally a dwelling house, but which served for a long period as an Independent Chapel, the interior floors having been cleared away to adapt it to this purpose; at the North end was a pulpit, and at the South end a gallery, and I remember it in this condition about 1848, though not then used except as a barn. Within the house, affixed to the woodwork, is a wooden panel with the inscription in raised letters : I.A.L. 1651.”

This is just a fraction of the information we have on just one house in the village – in this case Abners in Church Road. Our volunteers are scanning this and other documents to create a fully searchable database – so if you’d like to join us, either as a volunteer or simply as an interested browser of our records, we’d love to hear from you!

Our next meeting is on September 8th at 8pm. We hope to be able to hold this in person in the garden of Spring Cottage or St Michaels, both on Church Road. We will send out an email confirmation a week prior. If you wish to be included in the periodic emails of Blewbury history notes or receive the minutes of the meetings then please email Mark at


August 25, 2020


As you know, because of Covid-19 the VPA was unable to hold its 2020 Annual Summer Show. We are an Affiliated Member of the Royal Horticultural Society and we purchase the Banksian Medal to award to the Exhibitor who achieves the highest points in the Fruit, Vegetable and Flower Sections. Because the Banksian Medal is engraved by the RHS with the year it is awarded we are not in a position to roll it over to 2021. The Banksian Medal was first issued in 1922 in commemoration of Sir Joseph Banks and “to encourage exhibitions of various garden productions of excellence, merit or novelty “.

The Committee is pleased to announce it is organising a competition so the 2020 medal can be awarded.


The competition is open to everyone in the family




The Table Decoration and Wreath can be any size and shape with any type of decoration and accessories. Both items must be entered into the competition.

Please support the Village Produce Association so that we can find a winner for the 2020 Banksian Medal

FULL DETAILS will be available in the OCTOBER issues of the Blewbury Bulletin and Upton News.

NEWS EXTRA:  The VPA Social booked for Saturday 5th December is still in the diary. It will be organised in accordance with any Govt rules regarding Covid-19. Please make a note of the date. More details next month.

Happy Gardening. Eileen

Blewbury Croquet Club

The Club wishes the Bulletin a happy step back towards normality; and would like to reassure its readership that Croquet also continues on Tickers Folly Field. Sensible precautions are still in place, both to maintain social distancing, and to ensure thorough cleaning of all equipment being used.

New players are always welcome: we can provide all equipment needed; all you have to do is to wear flat-soled shoes (to avoid damaging the lawn). If you’re interested, please contact David Long (; 07484 360169).

Bridge Club – September 2020

The club’s Funbridge sessions have continued on Tuesday and Thursday evenings, and on Fridays for Novices.

Overall, support has been disappointing, though, and it seems unlikely that we will be able to safely meet to play bridge in person for the foreseeable future, despite, as you may well be aware, the Village Hall Refurbishment is now almost complete.

So, we have decided to form a Virtual Blewbury Bridge Club, with the intention of holding, initially, one session a week at 7.30pm on Tuesday evenings on a site called Bridge Base On-line. Many of you will already be aware of this site, and may be playing regularly there too.

Some Directors will need to be trained to organise this, but it seems this may not be complete until later in September. So, we do not anticipate starting the Virtual Club until late September. We will keep you informed of progress through the club’s email circulation system.

We will also hope to hold an AGM on Thursday 8th October on Zoom. Anyone not able to use this type of facility is welcome to submit views/opinions/questions in advance to either the Chairman or Secretary. An Agenda will also be circulated in advance. In the meantime, stay safe and well.  Michael Allen  851870

Blewbury WI

Hello everyone. Still the same old same old! Hope everyone is keeping well and safe.

Here at Blewbury WI, for our Summer Social, we have arranged a “ social distancing” picnic in the grounds of the Melland Room. All the Government guidelines have been taken care of and we are now hoping for good weather. We have managed to arrange our usual meetings and coffee mornings via Zoom.

Lyn has resumed her “Walks”, so some of us have the opportunity get out into our lovely countryside. The “New” Village Hall has been booked for our September Main Meeting and we are making plans for meeting up again. The first time since February! Almost back to normal!!

For more details please contact our Secretary, Kath Butler, on 01235 851299  or visit our web page, where you will find more information.       Love from Cilla.