Village News

Blewbury Croquet Club

July 1, 2020

Croquet is possibly the easiest sport in which to maintain social distancing.

Our season is now under way, albeit with restrictions on the number of people playing at any one time, and with a cleaning regime in place to minimise any risks of virus transmission.

With reduced subscription income this year, given a number of members who’ve understandably chosen not to renew in the current circumstances, the club is delighted to have instead been granted £1700 from the Community Emergency Fund – administered by Sport England – specifically to help maintain our lawns. Sport England were previously the principal sponsors of our courts’ construction, via a National Lottery grant in 2002/3: it’s great that they still recognise our contribution to sport in the community.

If you’re at all interested in joining us, please get in touch. David Long, Secretary BCC (07484 360169)

Village Hall Refurbishment Update

June 4, 2020

Good progress has been made over the past month.  In spite of social distancing and continuing difficulties with supplies, MD Group have recovered time.

Rewiring has continued; new ceilings have been installed, with new insulation in the Main Hall ceiling and loft; the WCs have new windows; door frames have been fixed; and sanitaryware and kitchen cupboards have been delivered to site awaiting installation. The roofers, who have been particularly set back by the shutdown, have started on the new flat roofs. MD expect the pace to continue to accelerate over the next month.

The refurbishment of the post office will start on 26 May. Because of the difficulties of distancing in such a confined space, this will take longer than in the original programme. The plan is to re-open on 25 June.

We shouldn’t get carried away, but things are looking a lot more positive than a month ago. Ironic, isn’t it? After all this time, we could soon have a shiny, new village hall we won’t be able to use. Steve White

Sustainable Blewbury

Garden market

We are trying to work out how to resume our usual Saturday morning sessions, probably without our gazebo which would mean we’d need dry weather with our helpers maintaining 2m distancing and wearing gloves. We hope to be able to start by about the middle of June.

Repair cafe

We are sorry to have to announce that given the current situation, we have decided that we must cancel the Repair Cafe planned for 27th June. We hope that we will be able to hold our next Repair Cafe in September.

 

We also hope to run our apple juicing programme in the autumn.

 

Membership of Sustainable Blewbury

Would you like to become a Member of Sustainable Blewbury? It’s free and without obligation and you can receive our regular newsletter by email. (You will also receive it if you are on our supporters list but are not a member.) You will then be invited to our AGM and can make suggestions about our activities. If you’d like to be a member, email us at: secretary@sustainable-blewbury.org.uk. If you’d like to read our constitution, visit: sustainable-blewbury.org.uk/SB_Constitution.pdf.

BLEWBURY FREECYCLE

FREE ITEMS TO A GOOD HOME

E-MAIL TEL NO.
Levington hand push lawn sand spreader. Excellent condition.

Jane Kinniburgh

janehkinniburgh@yahoo.co.uk

850341
(about) 5 gallons creosote

Peter Saunders

pahsaunders@gmail.com

850245
To freecycle your item please send a short description, email and phone number to Lydia Inglis (lydandmuz@gmail.com)

To participate in our activities, or to receive our free bi-monthly Newsletter,
email
us at info@sustainable-blewbury.org.uk or phone 01235 850558

Bridge Club during lockdown

Having ceased physical play over two months ago, members have been finding other ways to satisfy their need for some mental challenges.

Some are playing with a regular partner on the internet on sites such as Bridge Base Online, where the EBU runs regular daily sessions of 12 boards at 12 noon, 2.00, 3.30, 7.30 and 9pm. There are also occasional Oxfordshire County events on this website, too.

In order to maintain some form of cohesive club activity, Blewbury Bridge Club has set up regular sessions of 20 boards, playing against the computer, on a site called Funbridge at 7.30pm on Tuesday and Thursday evenings. It was felt this would appeal to the widest cross-section of the membership. However, support has been a bit patchy and so it would be good if more members could take up the option of some bridge stimulation in these sessions. Contact the Chairman for further information on how to join the site and find the dedicated Blewbury sessions, where you can test your skills against the other Blewbury members who take part. A Novices session of 15 boards has also been set up at 7.30pm on Friday evenings on the same site. This is proving quite popular.

It would seem unlikely that the club will re-convene physically again before the autumn – let us hope that the recent news concerning a vaccine possibly being available in September proves correct. Otherwise, we are probably looking at a long delay before we can meet again. Michael Allen  851870

What did you do in the big lockdown, Grandad?

Blewbury Local History Group

Here we are again and maybe we are getting used to the situation, or maybe not! We have had few responses for our appeal last month to Grannies which was a bit disappointing. In our last history meeting, online, several people commented on various apps which have been helping villagers with shopping. There were also comments about how friendly folk are when out walking in the village. There were also lots of remarks about the peace, and the birdsong, but also comments about how pleased parents would be to have school restarting again. Will there be changes when Lockdown finishes? Let us know what you think – this period is absolutely unique and historical. (The nearest was Spanish Flu, after 1918 and much of that history has been lost or hidden.)

Next meeting is Tuesday, June 9th at 8pm by Zoom. Contacts: Mark at  markpalethorpe@talktalk.net or Audrey 850427 or audreyrosettalong@gmail.com and Roger Murphy at roger.murphy65@gmail.com

On the Bright Side

April 19, 2020

In the words of Eric Idle from the gospel according to Monty Python ‘Some things in life are bad, they can really make you mad, but always look on the bright side of life!’

None of us have ever experienced anything like this before but experience is something you don’t get until just after you need it. This is a time when we realise who our true friends are, those people who know you well but like you anyway. Blewbury has come up trumps in this time of adversity and talking of trumps, try telling Melania that social distancing is a bad thing.

Yes, even in Blewbury there are acute shortages caused by panic buying of avocados and goji berries and millennials shooting a line of bread flour but there are alternatives. Find something small and barely alive, put it on top of rice and strap it up with insulation tape – bingo, sushi! Or a cabbage from Savages, you know, that vegetable that’s as big and as wise as a man’s head. Going back to The Life of Brian – what did the Romans ever do for us, well they brought us tinned tomatoes, that’s what.

As well as bringing the community closer together, there have been other spin-offs, some good some bad. I no longer have to have as many meetings, where minutes are kept and hours are lost. Skipping the twentieth century we have embraced the twenty-first by having a Parish Council Zoom meeting which was ‘interesting’. But I have to say that I miss my twice weekly walk to the Blueberry with my mate Elphin for a couple of pints of Guinness, other makes of dark frothy beverages are available. This in spite of it now coming out of cans and brought to life with a vibrator. We would saunter along Watery Lane with his little legs trying to keep up in spite of doing four hundred Fitbit steps every hundred metres. He follows Ogden’s Law which states that the sooner you fall behind, the longer you have to catch up. But if I am inspired by anyone at this time to ‘always look on the bright side’ it is Elphin. In spite of a pretty ropey year before this mess he has still managed to come up with cartoons to amuse himself and others as he self isolates in Longridge, his house (see picture above).

So, no negativity. If we are all sensible, this will soon be a bad dream.  Chris Lakeland

Village Hall Refurb

February 20, 2020

We are still on track to finish by the end of June.

The Hall has been stripped bare, with openings cut for the new storage area and for the additional door at the back. A drain has been cut for the new Vale Room toilets and scaffolding has been erected in preparation for work on the gable ends and the new flat roofs.

Coronavirus has not yet affected progress but we cannot assume that it will not disrupt supplies or the availability of labour at some point. We’ll be keeping this under regular review and will let you know if anything changes.

Steve White

Editor’s note:  The picture shows Steve White (right) with MD Group’s Site Manager Kevin Campbell outside the Hall (photo: Oxford Mail)

Post Office News

April 23, 2020

By the time you read this, the Post Office will be having its facelift. Our last day of trading was Tuesday 21st May, and we will be reopening on Thursday 25th June at 9 am.

At the moment, we have no idea what our regular opening times or days will be by then. In the meantime the nearest Post Office will be East Hagbourne, which is currently open 9 – 12.30 every morning.

While we are closed, Kitty’s eggs will be on my front porch, with an honesty box. Greetings cards, packaging, sticky tape and smarties will also be at home with me, while all the stock and money will be stored in a vault somewhere! Stay safe everyone. Love from Karen xx 

Bridge Club

May 29, 2020

Having ceased physical play over two months ago, members have been finding other ways to satisfy their need for some mental challenges. Some are playing with a regular partner on the internet on sites such as Bridge Base Online, where the EBU runs regular daily sessions of 12 boards at 12 noon, 2.00, 3.30, 7.30 and 9pm. There are also occasional Oxfordshire County events on this website, too.

In order to maintain some form of cohesive club activity, Blewbury Bridge Club has set up regular sessions of 20 boards, playing against the computer, on a site called Funbridge at 7.30pm on Tuesday and Thursday evenings. It was felt this would appeal to the widest cross-section of the membership. However, support has been a bit patchy and so it would be good if more members could take up the option of some bridge stimulation in these sessions. Contact the Chairman for further information on how to join the site and find the dedicated Blewbury sessions, where you can test your skills against the other Blewbury members who take part. A Novices session of 15 boards has also been set up at 7.30pm on Friday evenings on the same site. This is proving quite popular.

It would seem unlikely that the club will re-convene physically again before the autumn – let us hope that the recent news concerning a vaccine possibly being available in September proves correct. Otherwise, we are probably looking at a long delay before we can meet again. Michael Allen  851870

Blewbury Good Neighbours Group

April 24, 2020

We now have over 200 lovely volunteers.

If you need a prescription collecting, some shopping done, a letter for posting or just need a friendly phone call, please ring Blewbury Post Office 01235 85177 or see the printed Bulletin for Karen or  Lydia’s mobile numbers and we will then find a volunteer who will call you back.

Woodlands pharmacy now requires a written letter of authorisation to collect on someone’s behalf, so please have a note written out & ready! Please don’t think you’re ‘being a nuisance’, because when we are poorly, we will be relying on you!

Stay safe. Love from Karen and Lydia