Edition 146 - October 2013

 Photo: Judie Weedon


Illustration by: Paul Swailes

Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness,
Close bosom-friend of the maturing sun;
Conspiring with him how to load and bless
With fruit the vines that round the thatch-eves run;
To bend with apples the moss'd cottage-trees,
And fill all fruit with ripeness to the core;
To swell the gourd, and plump the hazel shells
With a sweet kernel; to set budding more,
And still more, later flowers for the bees,
Until they think warm days will never cease,
For Summer has o'er-brimm'd their clammy cells.

Who hath not seen thee oft amid thy store?
Sometimes whoever seeks abroad may find
Thee sitting careless on a granary floor,
Thy hair soft-lifted by the winnowing wind;
Or on a half-reap'd furrow sound asleep,
Drows'd with the fume of poppies, while thy hook
Spares the next swath and all its twined flowers:
And sometimes like a gleaner thou dost keep
Steady thy laden head across a brook;
Or by a cyder-press, with patient look,
Thou watchest the last oozings hours by hours.

Where are the songs of Spring? Ay, where are they?
Think not of them, thou hast thy music too,-
While barred clouds bloom the soft-dying day,
And touch the stubble plains with rosy hue;
Then in a wailful choir the small gnats mourn
Among the river sallows, borne aloft
Or sinking as the light wind lives or dies;
And full-grown lambs loud bleat from hilly bourne;
Hedge-crickets sing; and now with treble soft
The red-breast whistles from a garden-croft;
And gathering swallows twitter in the skies.

John Keats


Artwork: Judie Weedon


Was it a good omen that they didn't declare we were going to have a barbecue summer this year? And we did! Certainly we appreciated some lovely hot, sunny, summer days and hopefully we've ingested sufficient of the 'sunshine vitamin' to stave off a few bugs this coming winter. Perhaps, however, it has come already judging from the wet and windy weather we are experiencing whilst I write this, although there is promise of it improving again.

The outside summer events all went off very successfully and were enjoyed by villagers and visitors alike; and there are indoor events planned for the autumn and winter.

It is hoped that readers will enjoy the Autumn and November poems, suggested by Trev, illustrated with previous drawings by our artist in residence, Paul.

Christmas cards are already on sale in the shops so a reminder that you can send your local greetings via the Newsletter, full details follow, but messages would be needed by Wednesday, 6th November. 6th November is also the deadline date for items for the December/Christmas/January issue. They would, as always, be welcome any time before that!

Once again, producing this Newsletter is only possible due to the support of contributors. My thanks to them all, especially the 'regulars' and if you've not yet sent something in, how about doing so now!

My best wishes to all readers, especially the newcomers to the village and all those not feeling at their best just now.

Judie - Ed


Artwork: Paul Swailes


The Summer Fayre on 20th August went with a swing. Our sincere thanks to everyone who gave items for the various stalls, etc., helped with the preparations and again on the night. We did not seem to have so many visitors this year but £975 was raised during the evening - there will, of course, be some expenses to pay. Our special thanks to Stuart and Sue Neale who again organised everything.

The final total for Gift Day reached £815. Thank you again for all your support.

The Harvest will be celebrated on Sunday, 6th October, with a Family Service at 11.00 a.m. and the church will be decorated on the Friday and Saturday before. Please let Sue Neale [883893] know if you can bring any flowers or produce or would like to make a donation towards the cost. This year again we are going to collect tins of food for the Food Bank, so please bring a gift along to the Sunday service or to the Supper. The Supper will be on Wednesday, 9th October at 7.00 p.m. in the Manor Hall. A buffet will be organised followed by a sing-a-long and there will not be a service in church. Any produce will be sold off during the evening. Everyone is invited to come along and join us - please look out for posters.

The following special dates are rapidly approaching:

  • Sunday, 27th October - Bible Sunday with Holy Communion as usual at 11.00 a.m.
  • Sunday, 3rd November - All Saints Day. There will be a service in the afternoon when we light candles in memory of loved ones. Tea and biscuits will follow and a chance to talk.
  • Sunday, 10th November - Remembrance Sunday. We shall meet in church at the earlier time of 0.45 a.m. ready to proceed to the War Memorial for 11.00 a.m. Wreaths will be laid on behalf of the Parish Council and St. Peter's.
  • Sunday, 1st December - Advent Sunday. A village service as usual at 11.00 a.m. and the first candle will be lit on the Advent Wreath.

We'll meet for Friendship Lunches at The Globe on Wednesdays 23rd October and 27th November, 2.00 noon onwards. As always, everyone is welcome.

Mary Tucker




On the 5th July the jet stream finally moved north, the Azores high arrived and the long awaited summer weather settled in.

For two and a half weeks the temperatures rose into the mid to high twenties peaking at 28.9 Deg C on the 19th. Past July's have seen the temperatures in the mid-thirties but this was an improvement on the last few years. The first rain fell on Wednesday, the 24th, followed by a drop in temperature and a slow breakdown to more unsettled conditions. It was the driest July we have ever recorded with a total of only 21mm, the nearest to that was 2006 with 42mm. The winds were light for most of the month with a maximum gust of 22 knots. Chicane recorded 218.75 hours of sunshine, the highest recorded for July since 2002.

The first few days of August were mixed but then on the 5th we had 35mm - more than the whole of July - and this was followed by the onset of the monsoon season on the next day with 39mm falling by 1230 and a total of 44mm by the end of the day. This led to flooding in Ilfracombe and reports that the beach at Combe Martin had been washed away. The rest of the month apart from a few showers and some drizzle was pretty dry again with a total of only 104mm which was fairly average for a month in which the rainfall can vary widely.

It was a very pleasant month with the temperature peaking at 26.2 Deg C' up on the last few Augusts. The minimum of 10.5 Deg C was about average and winds were again fairly calm with a maximum gust of 21 knots. The 178.5 hours of sunshine, although not a record, were up on the last few years.

Autumn seems to be on its way now but at least we have had a reasonable spell of summer weather this year.

Simon and Sue




We now have a new venue for our meetings which is the Parish Rooms.  

At the August Parish Council Meeting, reports were received from the Police, County Councillor Andrea Davis and District Councillor Yvette Gubb. The Parish Clerk had attended a Clerk's Event at The Cedars in Barnstaple organised by the Devon Association of Local Councils, an opportunity to meet up with other Clerks, both experienced and some less so...  

There were a number of matters arising at the previous meeting and Councillors continue to press for action in regard to road defects and awarded the contract for a replacement bus shelter at Pitt Hill to Gary Songhurst.

A review of the Clerk's salary took place, guidelines having been received from the Devon Association of Local Councils and it was agreed to increase it by 1% as per the agreement with the regulatory bodies. Three Planning Applications were considered and a reply sent to North Devon Council.

The part night lighting of street lights came into force in Berrynarbor on 12th August.  The street lights will go off at approximately 12.30 a.m. and on again at approximately 5.30 a.m.  This programme is being rolled out across Devon for two reasons (1) to save money on electricity and (2) to reduce CO2 emissions.

Councillors have been invited to a Parish Forum being held in the Civic Centre, Barnstaple on 9th October. A Green Infrastructure Survey has been completed and sent online by the Clerk.

The following road closure was noted: from 11th to 18th November at Barton Lane for South West Highways to carry out drainage works. It is hoped to progress an Emergency Plan in the near future.

Representations were made regarding the odour from the stream and this is being progressed by District Councillor Mrs Gubb, Environmental Health Department at North Devon Council and the Environment Agency.

At the September meeting, reports were again received from the Police, County Councillor Andrea Davis and District Councillors Julia Clark and Yvette Gubb. Councillor Lorna Bowden gave a report on behalf of the Manor Hall Management Trust.   

Councillor Yvette Gubb has been dealing with the Environment Agency and Environmental Health at North Devon Council regarding odour emanating from the stream. The advice for parishioners is that if there is a re-occurrence, people should telephone the Environment Agency so that this can be logged and dealt with.  

District Councillor Yvette Gubb has kindly offered to assist with an Emergency Plan for Berrynarbor and this was welcomed by Councillors, who would like members of the public to be involved. You are invited, through this Newsletter, to contact any Parish Councillor or the Clerk to register your interest in being part of the preparation of this important document.   No date has yet been fixed for the Meeting and this will be advised as soon as feasible.

Sue Squire - Clerk [01598 710526]


Ilfracombe Community Minibuses - Our Regular Services

For half day and full day social trips out, for individuals to get out more Contact: Shirley Jones [01271] 863630.

For Ring and Ride to Barnstaple on Friday mornings or Ring and Ride to Sainsbury's, Barnstaple alternate Thursday mornings or Community Group Hire, your driver or ours, Days out and Times to suit the Group Contact: Janice Quinn [01271] 866762.

For Theatre Minibus Travel [including theatre ticket] to Landmark or Queen's Theatre Contact: Janice Banks [01271] 865655.

For general enquiries including private hire and self-drive hire, Contact: Shirley Jones [01271] 863630 or Allan Day [07817217109].




Another well supported Show. The Hall was buzzing with activity in the afternoon as villagers and holiday makers viewed the exhibits.

The results for this year were:

  • Floral Art - The Globe Cup - Sue Neale, Junior: Caitlin Burgess
  • Home Cooking - The Walls Cup - Yvonne Davey, Junior: Matthew Rumson
  • Handicrafts - Needlework The Davis Cup - Wendy Duffin, Junior: Shannon Hill
  • Handicrafts - The Watermouth Cup - Susan Branch, Junior: Shannon Hill
  • Grow Your Own
    • Potatoes - Jackie Pierpoint, Junior: Caitlin Burgess
    • Sunflowers - Sloley Farm All Stars Junior: Edie Maytum
  • Art - The George Hipppisley Cup - Wendy Duffin Junior: Shannon Hill
  • Photography - The Vi Kingdon Award - Alex Parke, Junior: Harry Weedon
  • Fruit & Vegetables - The Derrick Kingdon Cup Bett Brooks, Junior: Caitlin Burgess
  • Potted Plants -The Lethaby Cup - Lee Lodge, Junior: Caitlin Burgess
  • Cut Flowers - The Manor Stores Rose BowlGillian, Junior: Caitlin Burgess
  • The Manor Hall Cup : Best Exhibit: Sue Neale
  • The Ray Ludlow Award : Best Non-Horticultural Exhibit: Susan Branch
  • The Junior Cup [Cumulative Total]
    • 1st - 212 points Caitlin Burgess
    • 2nd - 46 points Harry Weedon
    • 3rd - 34 points Shannon Hill
  • The Sally Barten Bowl [Junior Handicrafts, Needlework: Shannon Hill
  • The Watermouth Castle Cup Best Exhibit on theme Wonders of the World: Alex Parke

The organising group would like to congratulate all the winners and thank everyone who took part or helped run the event in any way and they look forward to seeing you next year!



Luckily the sun shone for Ethel's 100th Birthday on the 25th July.

It began with family and friends and the lovely card sent to her from the Queen, of which she is very proud. In the afternoon Class 3 from the school walked up and sang 'Happy Birthday' to her, Thank you so much - it was wonderful. And it didn't finish there as they rang the church bells in the evening to make her day complete - another thank you.

On the Sunday the celebrations carried on with another open day. More friends and relations arrived and the cake was finally cut, and yet another round of 'Happy Birthday' finishing off the day.

Instead of presents and flowers a charity box was supplied in which was kindly deposited a grand total of £600. This has been divided equally between three charities: North Devon Talking Newspaper, The Lifeboat and the Devon Air Ambulance.

Thank you so much to everyone who helped in any way and to all our guests who made these One Hundredth Birthday celebrations so memorable.

Linda, George and all the Family

... and we all send our congratulations and very best wishes to Ethel on reaching her 100th Birthday. What an achievement!




'... good company, good wine, good welcome, can make good people.'
William Shakespeare

I've always thought this Bard was a clever man. 'Company . . . wine (and) welcome' are in 'good' supply at our Wine Circle evenings!

We've had several months of wonderful sunshine recently, so I'm sure many have enjoyed a glass or two with or without family and friends in our gardens. This has been the best summer, I believe, for seven years; however, the nights are beginning to draw in, signalling that autumn is on its way and, therefore, it is nearly time for enjoying six tastings at the Manor Hall.

Wednesday 16th October sees the beginning of our forthcoming programme for 2013-14. John Hood, a long-standing member and witty presenter, introduces the season with a look and taste of Iberian Wines. Knowing John's ability, I am sure he will find some interesting and delightful examples from this large European wine-growing area.

20th November is our second event when we shall have the pleasure of hearing Jonathan Coulthard again. For those that don't know, Jonathan is a 'vine to wine' man, living and working on his French vineyard in the Cotes du Duras. His presentation will include his award-winning Terra: a terrific red, but the majority of samples will focus on his local competition. Earlier this year, members and guests had the pleasure of sampling some of this competition and it was good, very good.

Proceedings begin at 8.00 p.m. in the Manor Hall. I look forward to seeing numerous 'good people' - old and new faces. It's a great way of seeing if Shakespeare is right!

Judith Adam - Secretary and Promotional Co-ordinator



We wish to thank EVERYONE who helped to make the Pig Roast and Barbecue at South Lee at the end of July such a great success.

A special thank you to son-in-law Geoff who stood basting and turning the pig all day, then cooking the burgers in the evening!

We are very grateful to all the folks who turned out to support us. Due to your generosity we were able to send £1,250 to the North Devon Hospice, a very worthy charity.


Chris, Barbara and all the Family


Artwork: Peter Rothwell


Can you remember the first joke you ever repeated? The very first joke I heard as a young lad on the school playground was this: 'Why do birds fly south for winter?' 'Because it's too far to walk!'

But have you heard the story of the birds that could not fly? They looked with longing at the clouds, the branches and the best fruits at the tops of the trees. If only these could be theirs. God heard their desire. One night, while all the birds were sleeping, he attached wings to their backs. When they awoke, the birds were furious that God had given them an unwanted burden which they would now have to carry about with them for the rest of their lives. How could God lay upon them more than they already had to bear?

But when one bird began to move its new wings, it was lifted aloft and given a freedom it never knew existed. The birds discovered their burden was a gift. Their wings became a way to a more abundant life. Similarly, in our lives, we can discover the gift God wants to give every one of us. In embracing that gift, we may experience freedom and wholeness like never before. It is the transforming power and love channelled to this world through the life, death and resurrection of Jesus. Similarly, as we journey through life, what appears like a burden initially may turn out to be the gift for which we've been looking and praying.

Something to think about as we look up and see the birds flying south! No, not because it's too far to walk but because it's that time of year again!

It's also harvest and you are warmly invited to come to the Church and School Family Service on 6th October at 11.00 a.m., as well as the Harvest Supper in the Manor Hall the following Wednesday, 9th October.

While we are on dates, parents please note that our new initiative, Messy Church, has resumed for the autumn and is on the second Saturday morning in the month at Combe Martin Village Hall. This is a family event starting with bacon baps at 9.30 a.m. followed by an hour of fun craft activity.

Lastly, I hope to get an Alpha or equivalent course going once again this autumn to provide opportunity to discuss matters of faith and spirituality in an informal setting. Do let me know if you would like to do this.

Best wishes,

[Rev. Chris


Artwork: Angela Bartlett


The six and a half years I spent in Berrynarbor ended on the 1st January 1946. Those years were at a very impressionable time of my life.

The Gaiety Concert Hall, Ilfracombe

Berrynarbor has drawn me back for many enjoyable holidays but alas, I am now 84 and unable to undertake the long journey from the far side of the country. However, let me reminisce . . . here are some of the changes I have noticed over the years.

Going firstly to Berrynarbor, the village shop was then run by a Miss Cooper and Mr. Walter Osborne. As a youngster I was, of course, only interested in sweets. These were rationed and there was very little choice. The shop premises are now residential.

There was no car park in those days and, of course, very few cars. The Post Office was a few doors away from the school and at one time run by a Mr. Rudd.

I believe there was a butcher's shop which closed shortly after we came to live in the village.

Mill Farm was farmed by a Mr. Jim Chugg. The water wheel was taken out in 1946 and there were no caravans, only sheep and lambs occupying the fields. The lake had a great deal of foliage around it

There has been a fair amount of development over the years, particularly on Hagginton Hill, Barton Lane, Birdswell Lane and the Sterridge Valley. Watermouth harbour had no caravan site.

Moving on to Combe Martin, as far as I can remember the Lime Kiln car park was just wasteland and there were no museums. Apart from the estate at the very top end of the village I have not noticed a great deal of development although many of the shops, like the Kingston Hall, are now residential. I remember many dances at the Kingston Hall with the Four in Rhythm being the band.

Turning to Ilfracombe, there were three theatres. The Victoria Pavilion, The Alexandra Hall [which fell into decay but has since been restored], and the Gaiety Concert Hall.

The Gaiety Hall ran many shows with performances by The Gaietys, Flairs and Flashes, Kit Kats, etc., with artists Ronald Frankeau, Madelaine Rossiter and Tommy Blaire. Before the war, there was roller skating there in the winter.

There were two cinemas, the Scala in the High Street, which is now residential, and the New Cinema [formerly a chapel I think] in Northfield Road. Both are now gone although today there is, of course, one in the High Street and the Landmark shows films.

The old Grammar School is now the Primary School. Many of the hotels have either gone or been turned into flats, some burned down or have been demolished.

There was a bandstand near the Victoria Pavilion. This was bought, dismantled and re-erected piece by piece on a private estate in the Midlands. It was replaced in 1992 in Runnymeade Gardens.

Do you remember a shop down by the pier called William Norman and Father? Most unusual, it's normally 'and Son'! I was at school with William, but he has sadly passed on.

Altogether, fond memories of an area which has so much to commend it. Miss you, North Devon!

Tony Beauclerk - Stowmarket


Dave Beagley

Solution in Article 36.




Philip Larkin said:
"Most novels have a beginning, a MUDDLE and an end."

Usually when visiting the village shop I quickly scan the shelves of second hand books by the door and often there is a title to tempt me.

There has been a remarkable range of contemporary fiction. Recently, I have found books there by Patrick Gale, Helen Dunmore, William Trevor, Sebastian Faulks, Annie Proux, Ruth Rendell and Ian Rankin. There has also been Booker Prize winning 'The Line of Beauty' by Alan Hollinghurst and 'Any Human Heart' by William Boyd, both dramatized for television in recent years.

So a treasure trove on those few modest shelves. An impressive line-up of literary talent. The books are usually in good as new condition and a bargain at fifty pence each. And to make room on my shelves for these nearly new acquisitions I have to remove a few volumes. And where do I take them? To the village shop of course.

Advice on telling a story in 'Alice in Wonderland': "Begin at the beginning and go on till you come to the end. Then stop."



Unfortunately, this event was cancelled due to lack of ticket sales, but having gone around the village with 'Cancelled' strips, I discovered that a few people were interested, so an explanation is warranted and is good P.R.

Stuart Holder charges to speak at one of these events, and, therefore, I felt that it was only right to buy something to give to the other speakers to show appreciation for their time and knowledge. A Manor Hall fee would have been an additional cost, plus the outlay for the 'tipples and nibbles'.

Just over a week before the event, the Shop, the Globe and Sue's of Combe Martin had not had one ticket request and, although, it is known that the main thrust for ticket sales in the village can often be left to the last minute, there is, usually, an early 'trickle' purchase. As none had been sold, I had to assume that this event came too soon after a busy and eventful summer.

Perhaps a horticultural evening of this nature can be held later in the year or early next . . .

Judith Adam



The Summer season ends on 31st October, until then opening hours are 10.00 a.m. until 5.00 p.m. In November we shall be open Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays from10.30 a.m.to 3.00 p.m. and 2 hours on Saturdays.

  • SAIL LOFT TALK SPECIAL on Monday 7th October As an experiment we'll be having Steve Eddy from Exmoor Zoo talking about SPIDERS and trying to get us to love them. Preceding the talk we shall be having a Scary Spider Supper consisting of two courses for £10.00. Do come and support us and learn to love the little darlings!
  • COFFEE MORNINGS will be held on Tuesdays 8th and 22nd October. Do come along and talk to our volunteers whilst you sit, drink a cup of tea or coffee and eat a biscuit or two. From 11.00 a.m. to 1.00 p.m.
  • HALLOWEEN CHILDREN'S CRAFT WORKSHOP on Thursday 31st October. Details from the Museum nearer the time. A fun filled couple of hours for the children
  • NOVEMBER 4th at 7.30 p.m. Mary Breeds from Braunton Burrows will give a talk on Wild Coast showing us lots of her wonderful photos of the Devon coast. Admission £3.00




and in the New Year
BLACK COMEDY - A one-act farce by Peter Schaffer

An attractive, but nervous sculptor; his frightfully spoiled fiance and her Daddy; a refined and repressed middle-class spinster and a camp, possessive antique-dealer are all at home when the lights go out. What goes on in the dark especially when a millionaire art collector arrives?

Directed by Cecily Blyther

13th & 14th March 2014 at 8.00 p.m. Tickets £8




We have had a positive start to the year with 18 children on roll - with numbers growing all the time. Our children have bounced back into the Autumn term following the summer holidays. Our topic this term is "All About Me" and we look forward to getting to know all our children a little better over the coming weeks.  You may also see staff and children taking a walk through the village so that we may explore our "home soil"!

Talking of staff, may I welcome Jackie Tucker to our team. Jackie is well qualified and brings with her experience from other settings. We are all looking forward to working with her.

We have extended our opening hours and can now offer the following session times:

  • Mondayand Tuesday 9.00 a.m. to 3.00 p.m.
  • Wednesday and Thursday 8.30 a.m. to 3.00 p.m.
  • Friday 8.30 a.m. to 12.30 p.m.

Our recent decision to extend our provision to include 2 year olds in addition to 3 and 4 year olds has remained popular for many families. Similarly extending some of our morning opening times to 8.30 a.m. has proved useful to many families. We have two fundraising events planned for this term - a winter coffee morning (pumpkin soup included!) and a bingo night in conjunction with Berrynarbor PTA. Please look out for information over the next few weeks. All proceeds from these events will be put towards our outdoor classroom fund (a much needed development following a tree removal in our garden).

Finally, for those of you with a Facebook account - we now have our very own page. Please 'like' us next time you use Facebook and you'll receive news of our events and all we do!

Many thanks for your continued support.

Emma, Sue, Karen and Jackie
Pre-school Mobile: 07807093644



The Gardens will NOT be open on Fridays and Saturdays during October and will close for the winter at the end of October. If you are thinking of visiting the gardens and/or tea room, it is advisable to ring first to ensure they are open [01271] 342528.



Recently, Geocaching [and that's another story] with my daughter Helen and a friend, we spent a beautiful Sunday morning walking over Morte Point, watching the seals playing amongst the rocks and being watched by friendly and inquisitive sheep. Finding the final clue took us to the churchyard at Mortehoe and the gravestone of Thomas and Tamzzyn Trace. We were intrigued by its inscription:


Jane Trace Died Feb 23rd 1843
Aged 6 months
Elizabeth Trace Died June 1 1843
Aged 10 months
Ann Trace Died April 25th 1845
Aged 12 months
William Trace Died Dec 8 1849
Aged 3 years
Isaac Trace Died Sep. 8 1853
Aged 12 months
Thomas Trace Died April 6 1855
Aged 2 years


How desperately sad to lose so many children at such young ages and what was the reason? It would appear that Jane and Elizabeth were twins. The gravestone was further inscribed with:

Tamzzyn Trace wife of Thomas Trace
departed this life August 8 1872 aged 60 years
also of the above
Thomas Trace who died June 11th 1879 aged 68 years


A wet afternoon and I decided to investigate further. I started with the 1871 Census which showed Thomas and 'Tamsen' living at Woollacombe Cottage, Morthoe. He was an agricultural labourer born at Westleigh in Devon and she born at West Down. But, surprise, surprise, with them at that time was William, a 10 year old grandson. Wonderful, so they had offspring who survived!

Going back, the 1861 Census showed them living at Woollacombe Village, with a daughter Mary 24, a son John - a farm servant - 22, and 11 year old Ellen, a scholar, all three born in Morthoe.

Ten years back again and John, who would have been 11/12 is missing, perhaps away from home but there is James, then 3 and born in 1848, who died, I discovered, like his siblings, when he was only 4 or 5 in around 1853.

It would seem, therefore, that the grandson William must have been John's son.

Looking up John in the 1881 Census he was found to be a labourer in a coalyard, living at Landkey Road, Bishops Tawton with his wife Elizabeth, and here it became even more intriguing as she was born in 1840 in Berrynarbor! At this time, John and Elizabeth had 7 children: Thomas 15, Ellen 13, William H. 7, Mary 6, Rose 4, Lucy 3 and Alice 1. It would appear, however, that William and William H. are not the same lad as by this time grandson William would have been about 20. I wonder if he, too, didn't make it to adulthood;

And so to Elizabeth. Elizabeth and John were married towards the end of 1861. Her maiden name was Balment and she was the daughter of George - an agricultural labourer - and his wife Jane of Parsonage Close Cottage 3rd, Berrynarbor. Lorna tells me that the Parsonage Close cottages are what today are Woodvale, Brookdale and Riversdale in the Sterridge Valley.

I was glad that I was able to ascertain that Thomas and Tamzzyn's line continued. In fact, John and Elizabeth appear in the latest Census to be released, 1911. They were then living and had been for more than 20 years, at 14 Rolle Street, Pilton; John's occupation was given as a coal carter and Elizabeth a nurse and they had been married for 49 years. The family had increased to 9 with the addition of Florence 9 and Amy 7.

Did John and Elizabeth make their Golden Wedding? I believe they did as I think Elizabeth died in 1912 and John in 1915.

Judie Weedon


Geocaching is the real-world treasure hunt that's happening right now, all around you. There are 2,219,296 active geocaches and over 6 million geocachers worldwide.

It is an outdoor recreational activity, in which the participants use a Global Positioning System (GPS) receiver or mobile device and other navigational techniques to hide and seek containers, called "geocaches" or "caches", anywhere in the world.

A typical cache is a small waterproof container containing a logbook where the geocacher enters the date they found it and signs it with their established code name. After signing the log, the cache must be placed back exactly where the person found it. Larger containers such as plastic storage containers (Tupperware or similar) or ammunition boxes can also contain items for trading, usually toys or trinkets of little financial value, although sometimes they are sentimental. Geocaching shares many aspects with benchmarking, trigpointing, orienteering, treasure-hunting, letterboxing, and waymarking.



The morning smell of freshly-baked goods permeates the shop and they are proving very popular and selling like the proverbial . . . hot cakes! We have crusty rolls, sausage rolls, steak pasties and more, as demonstrated by two of our volunteers - Theresa and Jackie. A vegetarian success is the Indian vegetable slice; however, we can reassure our bread customers that we still stock their favourite loaves: white, brown, wholemeal, sliced or unsliced, supplied by Tony from The Pantry.

The 'Pound Zone' has made a welcome return. It's in a new location because it is now 'Bigger and Better' with all the usual favourites plus more.

We have introduced some new stationery ranges, too, that include birthday cards, new designs in wrapping paper and now we also have gift bags.

During the summer, our numerous visitors provided considerable and complimentary feedback, such as: "What a wonderful shop with so much choice." Our big supermarkets can afford to push, relentlessly, which means our shop, your shop, is becoming one of a minority of 'little' shops left, so keep supporting us please!

Also worth a mention, our Lotto sales have already raised £2397.00 for Good Causes.

Karen N.



Artwork: Harry Weedon


What a lovely summer we've had and we've been busy with the watering, but at least the flowers have had plenty of sun to bloom.

Although we did well, sadly we were not winners in the Best Kept Village competition but came within the top few with a creditable 91%.

The autumn will see us re-planting the tubs with bulbs for the spring and trying to save some of our larger plants for next year. We had a litter pick at the end of August and the amount of litter was proof that the summer was busy with lots of holidaymakers. Thank you to all the regular 'pickers' for your sterling work over the past year. There will be at least one more before the winter, so if you want to join us look out for the blackboard in the bus shelter.

Wendy Applegate


Artwork: Angela Bartlett

Chocolate and Beetroot Cake

Following the vegetables in cakes theme, in this chocolate cake beetroot is the veggie partner to the chocolate. The recipe is from Chris Pocock and I have tried it and it is lovely.

  • 75g cocoa powder
  • 180g plain flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 250g caster sugar
  • 250g cooked beetroot (not in vinegar)
  • 3 large free-range eggs
  • 200ml vegetable oil
  • 1tsp vanilla essence
  • Oven 180 Deg /Gas 4

Grease an 8-inch round cake tin and dust with caster sugar (line with greaseproof paper if it is not a spring form tin).

Mix the first 4 ingredients together well in a large bowl. Place the second 4 ingredients in a liquidiser and whisk until smooth. Pour this liquid in to the dry ingredients and beat well. Pour the mixture into the cake tin and bake for at least an hour in the middle of the oven, or until a knife comes out clean.

Leave to cool in the tin for 15 minutes and then turn out on to a wire rack to completely cool.

To serve simply sieve icing sugar on the top and serve with fruit and cream or top with your favourite chocolate icing or use the cake as a base for a black forest gateau with cherries, plain chocolate and cream.

This is a lovely moist chocolate cake so do try it.

Wendy Applegate



Hunting Songs

The Blush of Aurora

The blush of Aurora now tinges the morn,
And dew-drops bespangle the sweet scented thorn;
Then sound brother sportsman, sound, sound the gay horn,
Till Phoebus awakens the day.

And see now he rises! in splendour how bright!
O Peanl O Peanl For Phoebus, for Phoebus the god of delight,
All glorious in beauty now banishes night.
Then mount, boys, to horse and away.

What raptures can equal the joys of the chasel
Health, bloom and contentment appear in each face,
And in our swift coursers what beauty and grace,
While we the fleet stag do pursue.

At the deep and harmonious sweet cry of the hounds
Wing'd by terror he bursts from the forests wide bounds.
And tho' like lightning he darts o'er the grounds
Yet still, boys, we keep him in view.

Bright Phoebus

Bright Phoebus has mounted the chariot of day,
And the hounds and the horns call each sportsman away,
Through meadows and woods with speed now they bound,
Whilst health, rosy health, is in exercise found.

Hark away is the word to the sound of the horn
And echo, blithe echo, makes jovial the morn.


Each hill and each valley is lovely to view,
While puss flies the covert and dogs quick pursue,
Behold where she flies o'er the wide spreading plain,
While the loud open pack pursue her again.

Hark away is the word to the sound of the horn
And echo, blithe echo, makes jovial the morn.


At length puss is caught and lies panting for breath,
And the shout of the huntsman's the signal for death,
No joys can delight like the sports of the field,
To hunting all pleasure and pastime must yield.

Hark away is the word to the sound of the horn
And echo, blithe echo, makes jovial the morn.


Tally Ho

Ye sportsmen draw near and ye sportswomen too,
Who delight in the joys of the field;
Mankind, tho' they blame, are all eager as you,
And no one the contest will yield,
His Lordship, his worship, his honour, his grace
A-hunting continually go,
All ranks and degrees are engaged in the chase.
With, hark forward! huzza! tally ho!
The lawyer will rise with the first of the morn
To hunt for a mortgage or deed;
The husband gets up at the sound of the horn
And rides to the common full speed;
The patriot is thrown in pursuit of the game;
The poet, too, often lays low.
Who, mounted on Pegasus, flies after fame,
With, hark forward! huzza! tally ho!
While fearless o'er hills, and o'er woodlands we sweep,
Tho' prudes on our pastime may frown,
How oft do they decency's bounds overleap,
And the fences of virtue break down.
Thus public, or private, for pension, for place,
For amusement, for passion, for show,
All ranks and degrees are engaged in the chase.
With, hark forward! huzza! tally ho!

The Moment Aurora

The moment Aurora peeped in to my room
I put on my clothes and I called for my groom;
And my head heavy still, from the fumes of last night,
Took a bumper of brandy to set all things right:
And now we're all saddled, Fleet, Dapple and Grey;
Who seemed longing to hear the glad sound, hark awayl
Will whistle, by this, had uncoupled his hounds;
Whose ecstasy nothing could keep within bounds
Twas now, by the clock, about five in the morn;
And we all galloped off to the sound of the horn;
Jack Garter, Bill Babbler and Dick at the gun;
And by this time the merry Tom Fairplay made one,
Who, while we were jogging on blithesome and gay
Sung a song, and the chorus was - hark, hark away!
And no signs of madam, or trace of her feet;
And now Jemmy Lurcher, had ev'ry bush beat,
nay, we just had begun our hard fortune to curse,
When all of a sudden, out starts Mistress Puss;
Men, horses, and dogs, not a moment would stay.
And echo was heard to cry, hark, hark away!
The chase was a fine one, she took o'er the plain;
Which she doubled, and doubled and doubled again;
Till at last she to cover returned out of breath,
Where I and will Whistle were in at the death;
Then, in triumph, for you I the hare did display;
And cry'd to the horns, my boys, hark, hark away!

These songs are selected as typical from the Edinburgh Miscellany of 1808, which is crammed with many more, showing how popular the pursuit was at the time. Note the emphasis on early rising and healthy exercise!

Illustrations by:Paul Swailes




The Artists' Cabin at Bucks Mills

Perched above the beach at Bucks Mills is a tiny one-up one-down stone cottage called The Cabin. For many years, from the 1920's to the 1970's, it was the studio and summer home of the artists Judith Ackland and Mary Stella Edwards.

Examples of their work can be seen at the Burton Gallery's permanent exhibition. They specialised in landscapes and dioramas and devised a method of model making called Jacaranda; intricate figures made from cotton wool and then painted.

Painting on the beach, 1933
Judith Ackland 1898-1971

Now owned by the National Trust, The Cabin's annual Open Day was held on the first of June when many admirers flocked to see inside the tiny furnished rooms with crockery and cooking utensils still arranged on the shelves.

To reach Bucks Mills you can either walk, about a mile and half, down the wooded road from Bucks Cross on the A39 near Clovelly, or start from the car park on the edge of the village.

From there it is a pleasant walk to the sea past pretty cottages and gardens. Welsh poppies and lily of the valley flowered by the stream beside the road.

On the slipway to the beach is a collection of old fishermen's huts with heaps of lobster pots and there are magnificent Elizabethan lime kilns, one castellated and resembling a castle. In 1811 J.M.W. Turner came to Bucks Mills and sketched a scene around the smaller kiln with Clovelly in the background.

At a short distance along the beach to the east is a waterfall. We stood on the beach to enjoy the view across Bideford Bay and to watch the fulmars flying past. To the west we were surprised to see, silhouetted against the horizon, the dark pyramid formation called Blackchurch Rock.

In the sixteenth century Richard Cole of Woolfardisworthy built a harbour at Bucks Mills. The remains of the old quay, a pile of massive boulders, are visible at low tide. Richard Cole is believed to be the original Old King Cole.

The following poem was written by Stella Mary Edwards and included in a volume of verse called 'Summer Tide' published in 1965.

A Truce with Time

To watch that sea creep slowly in, draw gently out
To see the gulls above it swoop and call.
The cliff-edge flowers softly blown about
Both whiter than the foam each gleaming presence
Distinct and separate yet one in essence
With me as with the light embracing all
Lulls time itself to sleep.

Mary Stella Edwards

Illustrations by: Paul Swailes

Sue H



The piece in the June issue about Maureen Underdown [nee Peachy] and her father reminded Gladys Dyer, nee Toms, of going to dancing classes with Miss Hyams in Berrynarbor in about 1943. She has kindly sent this picture and comments; I think Maureen was the girl in the centre with the lovely long hair, and I am the little one second from the left.

Can anyone throw any further light on this photograph? What was the event? There are kilted and Welsh ladies and two Cub Scouts.



  • Pasta had not been invented.
  • Curry was an unknown entity.
  • Olive oil was kept in the medicine cabinet.
  • Spices came from the Middle East where we believed that they were used for embalming.
  • Herbs were used to make rather dodgy medicine.
  • A takeaway was a mathematical problem.
  • A pizza was something to do with a leaning tower.
  • Bananas and oranges only appeared at Christmas time.
  • The only vegetables known to us were spuds, peas, carrots and
    cabbage, anything else was regarded as being a bit suspicious.
  • All crisps were plain; the only choice we had was whether to put the salt on or not.
  • Condiments consisted of salt, pepper, vinegar and brown sauce if we were lucky.
  • Soft drinks were called pop.
  • Coke was something that we mixed with coal to make it last longer.
  • A Chinese chippy was a foreign carpenter.
  • Rice was a milk pudding, and never, ever, part of our dinner.
  • A Big Mac was what we wore when it was raining.
  • A microwave was something out of a science fiction movie.
  • Brown bread was something only poor people ate.
  • Oil was for lubricating your bike not for cooking, fat was for cooking.
  • Bread and jam was a treat.
  • Tea was made in a teapot using tea leaves, not bags.
  • The tea cosy was the forerunner of all the energy saving devices that we hear so much about today.
  • Tea had only one colour, black. green tea was not British.
  • Coffee was only drunk when we had no tea . . . and then it was Camp, and came in a bottle.
  • Cubed sugar was regarded as posh.
  • Figs and dates appeared every Christmas, but no one ever ate them.
  • Coconuts only appeared when the fair came to town.
  • Salad cream was a dressing for salads, mayonnaise did not exist
  • Hors d'oeuvre was a spelling mistake.
  • Soup was a main meal.
  • The menu consisted of what we were given, and was set in stone.
  • Only Heinz made beans, there were no others.
  • Leftovers went in the dog, never in the bin.
  • Special food for dogs and cats was unheard of.
  • Sauce was either brown or red.
  • Fish was only eaten on Fridays.
  • Fish and chips was always wrapped in old newspapers, and definitely tasted better that way.
  • Frozen food was called ice cream.
  • Nothing ever went off in the fridge because we never had one.
  • Ice cream only came in one flavour, vanilla.
  • None of us had ever heard of yoghurt.
  • Jelly and blancmange was strictly party food.
  • Healthy food had to have the ability to stick to your ribs.
  • Indian restaurants were only found in India.
  • Cheese only came in a hard lump.
  • A bun was a small cake that your mum made in the oven.
  • Eating out was called a picnic.
  • Cooking outside was called camping.
  • Hot cross buns were only eaten at Easter time.
  • Pancakes were only eaten on Shrove Tuesday - and on that day it was compulsory.
  • Cornflakes had just arrived from America but it was obvious that they would never catch on.
  • We bought milk and cream at the same time in the same bottle.
  • Sugar enjoyed a good press in those days and was regarded as being white gold.
  • Prunes were purely medicinal.
  • Surprisingly muesli was readily available in those days, it was called cattle feed.
  • Turkeys were definitely seasonal.
  • Pineapples came in chunks in a tin - we had only ever seen a picture of a real one.
  • We didn't eat croissants in those days because we couldn't pronounce them, we couldn't spell them and we didn't know what they were.
  • Garlic was used to ward off vampires, but never used to flavour bread.
  • Water came out of the tap, if someone had suggested bottling it and charging treble for it they would have become a laughing stock.
  • Food hygiene was only about washing your hands before meals.
  • Campylobacter, Salmonella, E.coli, Listeria, and Botulism were all called "food poisoning."

However, the one thing that we never ever had on our table in the fifties . . ELBOWS!


Artwork: Peter Rothwell


Friday 4th October:

Pool Tournament: £5.00 per person, only 16 entry places available so pay
for your place soon!! £100 in prize money.

Friday 11th October:

Curry & Quiz night in the backroom. Tickets £4.00 each. To raise money for the Herxheim Twinning Association.

Friday 18th October:

Games Night with Chinese/Thai Hot Buffet £4.00. 7.30 p.m. for Supper
first then Team Games of 'Killer' Skittles, Pool and Darts.
Put your name on the list at the bar . . .teams will be sorted out for you.

Friday 25th October:

Jamie @ Home. In the Backroom.

Friday 1st November:

Hallowe'en Party Night: 5.30 - 7.15 p.m. Kids Fancy Dress Party in the backroom: Disco and
Party Games with Captain Coconut Adults Party in the evening 9.00 p.m. to Midnight.
Details of both to follow nearer the date.

Sunday Roasts

available every Sunday 12.00-2.00 p.m. at just £7.50.
Also available at The Sawmill Inn. Booking is advised.

Now taking Bookings for Christmas Menu:

served from 1st to 24th December. By Reservation Only.




Our congratulations and very best wishes to Sarah and Chris [Townsend] who are delighted to announce the safe arrival of their latest family addition. A third daughter, Poppy Stella, was born on the 15th September weighing in at 7lbs 7oz, a sister for May and Rosie.



Congratulations to the Carnival Club whose float 'Under the Sea' with 20 toddlers aboard came 2nd at both Combe Martin and Ilfracombe Carnivals. In addition to doing so well and enjoying the events, the walkers raised £45 towards the Club.

A big thank you to everyone who helped to make the float so extra special and particularly Kevin, the tractor driver, and Phil who provided the music and power.

Be and Richard


Artwork: Paul Swailes

Manor Hall Matters

It seems ages ago now, but we can report a good outcome from the Berry Revels held on 6th August. Unlike last year, the weather was good but nonetheless thanks to everyone who came along. Particular thanks also go to those who helped out on the night - I won't name you all but you know who you are! It's good to be in a community where people join in and help out. The total takings were £1732, which is better than in most recent years bar the extremely successful 2011.

On the topic of the Trust's income, the Management Committee reviewed hall charges at its September meeting. All charges have been frozen for the last two years so there's an argument for some sort of inflationary increase. However, it was agreed to implement mostly minor changes, largely just to tidy up and standardise charges within clear bands. The charge for not-for-profit village activities remains unchanged at £11 per session, and for children's parties the charge is actually reduced to £25. Village users continue to get discounted prices. A full list of all hall charges will be on the new village website soon - have a look at the work underway by Alex Parke at www.berrynarborvillage.co.uk

Note there are always maintenance issues to pay for - It's good to report that the latest roof repairs and new lead gutter between the two hall wings are now complete, and we have a new rear fire door, but work to the roof of the manor house wing remains a challenge.

This autumn sees a return of the 10 week watercolour programme with Ian Hudson, held on Thursday mornings. If anyone is interested in joining - it doesn't matter if you have missed a week or two - contact Pip on 883600 or Linda (883322). Make a note of the Bhangra Night on

16th November and come and party Punjabi style

Len and the Manor Hall Committee



And what, you might ask, does that mean?  Only that Berrynarbor, thanks once again to Beaford Arts will be hosting one of the hottest Asian bands currently playing the circuit - RSVP. Saturday 16 November at 7:00 p.m.

Bhangra is a fusion of music and dance from the Punjab region of India and Pakistan.   In its earliest form it was a folk celebration welcoming the spring but has become integrated into popular Asian culture after being mixed with hip hop, house and reggae styles of music.   It has had a massive influence on Bollywood and is now a lively music scene across the UK; an expression of Asian culture and identity, showcasing all that is unique about that region.

RSVP are simply one of the best exponents of this form and have performed at Glastonbury and WOMAD where they "rocked the masses to exhaustion." 

This will be a complete entertainment experience as each show comes with an introduction to Bhangra dance with the emphasis on partying Punjabi style. We are talking "dancedelic rhythms and Bhangrarific tunes" with thumping bass lines and Asian melodies! Do not miss this once in a life time opportunity here in your very own Manor Hall.

So get your tickets early from the shop - £8.  They are already selling fast via the Beaford Arts web site.  Call Jenny Beer for more information on 07917562216.





We hope everyone enjoyed the summer holidays; at least the weather has been kinder to us this year! They seem to have flown by and I can't believe we are starting the autumn term already.

We should like to welcome into Mrs Wellings' class; Grace, Aston, George, Lily-May, Fiona, Joshua, Ellen, Indie and Rowan. Also joining us this term are William,Thomas, Elisa and Andres, we hope they enjoy their time at our school.

We also said goodbye to our year 6 pupils; Disnie, Elyse, Shannon, Addie, Jack, Jak, Louis and Luc. We wish them all every success in their new schools.

We have started our new year with our annual camping trips. Elderberry class stayed at Stowford and enjoyed a Wild Night Out under the stars! The weather was great and the children enjoyed laying down and looking at the constellations at night.

Blueberry class stayed at West Down in the school field where they enjoyed forest type activities.

This is a great opportunity for the children to get to know their new class members and their new teacher!

Children in Years 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6 will shortly be starting their swimming sessions. This is an important part of the curriculum, especially in the area we live.

Year 5 pupils are taking part in Forest Schools again this year, where they explore the forest, build dens, light fires using only natural resources and flints and learn about the trees and plants. They are taught to respect their environment and keep safe in it.

Our Harvest Festival will be held on Tuesday 8th October.

Sue Carey - Headteacher




Artwork: Angela Bartlett


VIEW NO. 145

Berrynarbor, N. Devon no. 137

This portrait view photographic postcard was published by Phillipse & Lees of Ilfracombe around 1908. This particularly clear view must have been taken from somewhere along Castle Hill.

Clearly seen in the foreground is the tiled roof of Hill Crest, No. 55, and part of the thatched roof of Jacobswell. Then we have an unusually clear picture of St. Peter's Church and tower, hiding most of the Manor Hall. To the right of the tower, the roofs of Manor Cottage and Court Cottage No. 53 are just visible. To the left of the tower can be seen a small part of Tower Cottage, No. 51, and also part of the roof of The Old Court.

Hagginton Hill and its old cottages rise above the then cultivated fields running down to and bordering the unseen road towards the Old Sawmill. These cottages start from part way up the hill and from left to right and running down the hill is the boundary wall of what was Grattons, now named Brackenberry House, which is not shown.

The cottages are Besshill, No. 14, then Nos. 15, 16,17 and 18. Then comes No. 19, Sunrise Cottage, Summerhill is higher up the garden and cannot be seen in this picture. Ivy Cottage, 21, and Holly Cottage, 22, are joined together and comprise the lowest, long cottage shown in this picture.

It is interesting to note that in the Watermouth Estate Auction Sale conducted by John Smale, F.A.E., on Tuesday, 17th August 1920 at the Bridge Hall, Barnstaple with completion date set for 25th March 1921, the following prices were achieved:

  • No 17 Lot No 73 in occupation of Mr. E. Challacombe - £220.00
  • No 18 Lot No 72 in occupation of Mr. C. Latham - £250
  • No 19 Lot No 71 in occupation of A. Greatrex Esq. - £260.00
  • No 22 Lot No 70 in occupation of Mr. E. Richards - £270.00

It is also interesting to note how in those days virtually every piece of spare ground was being cultivated.

Following my last article in the August issue, I should like to thank Derek Sanders who suggested the cottage could be Laston House in Ilfracombe, just above the Thatched Inn. Sadly, on the two visits I made, whilst it looked similar and had great views over the Bristol Channel towards Wales, it was not the case. Laston House has windows and the front door in similar positions, but the windows are all made up of small panes unlike those in my postcard.

Tom Bartlett
Tower Cottage, September 2013
e-mail: tomandinge40@gmail.com



Alfred and Amelia, the two puppies we adopted that are now fully grown and partnered, have written with their summertime news and their letters are on the board in the Manor Hall. Do take a minute to read them, these dogs do a remarkable job and literally change their partners' lives.

Alfred says it's not all work and no play. Daniel and I have been on a little holiday to the seaside, which was great fun. I loved running along the beach and dipping my paws in the water. I had a big adventure, too, when Daniel decided to go on a boat trip. Obviously I had to go along too, but I don't mind admitting I was a little nervous until I got my sealegs. Then I realised just how exciting it was!


Amelia tells us that Maureen tells everyone that I have become 'her right-hand in the house' because I help her with everything, I even hand her the pegs so she can hang out the washing. Sometimes, if I am in a skittish mood, I run around the garden with her undies. This means she has to wash them again, so I can get to load and unload the washing machine a second time!



P1020754 P1020752

British Summer Time this year ends on Sunday, 27th October at officially 1.00 a.m. So, DON'T FORGET, put your clocks back an hour or you might find yourself early for church or other things. Yes, we get an extra hour's sleep!

During British Summer Time [(BST], civil time in the United Kingdom is advanced one hour forward of Greenwich Mean Time [GMT], so that evenings have more daylight and mornings have less.

BST begins at 01:00 GMT on the last Sunday of March and ends at 01:00 GMT on the last Sunday of October and since October 1995 the times of commencement and cessation of daylight saving time across the European Union are aligned - for instance Central European Summer Time begins and ends on the same Sundays at exactly the same time, that is, 02:00 CET.

British Summer Time was first established by the Summer Time Act 1916, after a campaign by builder William Willett. His original proposal was to move the clocks forward by 80 minutes, in 20-minute weekly steps on Sundays in April and by the reverse procedure in September. In 1916 BST began on 21 May and ended on 1 October.

In 1940, during the Second World War, the clocks in Britain were not put back by an hour at the end of Summer Time. In subsequent years, clocks continued to be advanced by one hour each spring and put back by an hour each autumn until July 1945. During these summers, therefore, Britain was two hours ahead of GMT and operating on British Double Summer Time [BDST]. The clocks were brought back in line with GMT at the end of summer in 1945. In 1947, due to severe fuel shortages, clocks were advanced by one hour on two occasions during the spring, and put back by one hour on two occasions during the autumn, meaning that Britain was back on BDST during that summer.]

An inquiry during 1966-67 led the government to introduce the British Standard Time experiment, with Britain remaining on GMT+1 throughout the year. This took place between October 1968 and October 1971, after when it reverted to the previous arrangement.

Campaigners, including the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents [RoSPA] and environmental campaigners 10:10, have made recommendations that British Summer Time be maintained during the winter months, and that a double summertime be applied to the current British Summer Time period, putting the UK one hour ahead of GMT during winter, and two hours ahead during summer. This proposal is referred to as Single/Double Summer Time [SDST], and would effectively mean the UK adopting the same time zone as European countries such as France, Germany and mainland Spain - Central European Time and Central European Summer Time.



[25th May 1915 - 9th November 2010]

Furniture Designer

"Now firstly I will tell you how we came to have a vineyard," said Hilary. All 40 of us settled into our chairs for the talk at Eastcott Vineyard near Hatherleigh [a well organised outing by Judith for Berrynarbor Wine Circle]. As we had entered the room, I was diverted by the chairs: plastic ones identical to those older chairs in our Manor Hall.

Enter Robin Day - no, not the journalist and TV presenter, but a furniture designer who transformed British design after World War ll by experimenting with new materials to make inexpensive furniture. He became famous during the 1951 Festival of Britain where his steel and plywood furniture was displayed in the Homes and Gardens Pavilion. At the same time he designed the furniture for the Festival Hall.

But his most celebrated piece was in 1963: the moulded thermoplastic polypropylene chair, of which it is estimated that there are now 50 million still in circulation. When in Botswana's remote Okavango Delta on one occasion, he spied several examples bolted to a dug-out canoe! By his death in 2010, over 40 years later, there were still half a million being made annually, and the design had realised such fame that in January 2009 it appeared on a 1st Class postage stamp in the British Design Classics series. [Others included Concorde and the Mini].

Why did he decide on thermoplastic material for his design? Well, it was low in cost, flexible, scratchproof, heat resistant, lightweight and was tough when chairs were stacked - an ideal all-rounder!

Robin Day, the son of a police constable, was born on May 25th 1915 in the furniture-making town of High Wycombe. Recognising his drawing skills, his parents enrolled him at High Wycombe Technical Institute and later he won a scholarship to High Wycombe College of Art. During this time, he was approached by Lucian Ercolani, the founder of Ercol furniture, offering him a job at £1,000 a year - quite a sum pre-war. He didn't take it up [although much later, in 2003 he designed a chair for Ercol]. Instead, he won a scholarship to London's Royal College of Art - a disappointment to him as he found it 'all painting and sculpture' rather than teaching industrial design. He graduated in 1938 and even if only for its table tennis facilities, kept in touch with the college. It also led to a meeting in 1940 with Lucienne Conradi at a college dance, resulting in their marrying in 1942. She became a famous textile designer and although they worked side by side in their studio at Cheyne Walk in London for nearly 50 years, they rarely worked together. Nevertheless they shaped each other's work by suggestions and discussion.

Asthma ruled out active war service for Robin Day. Instead he taught at Beckenham School of Art where he met a fellow teacher, Clive Latimer. Together they won the International Competition for low-cost Furniture at the Museum of Modern Art in New York, and this gave his career a great boost.

He was already in his mid-thirties at the time of the Festival of Britain, when his furniture and Lucienne's textiles and wallpapers were displayed together. This gave impetus to their astonishing output throughout the 1950's.

A British furniture manufacturer, Hille, who specialised in period furniture, decided to modernise and knowing of Robin's success engaged him to design functional chairs, tables, desks and storage units. Many of these were low-cost. Pre-war furniture had been heavy and solid. Robin's designs were simple and low-cost. Of his 1952 reclining chairs he later told reporters: "What one needs in today's small rooms is to see over and under one's furniture".

Over the 44 years he worked for Hille's, he was not only responsible for many furniture designs, but also for their artwork, brochures, showroom design, exhibitions and logo.

At the same time, he designed television and radio sets for Pye, aircraft interiors for BOAC and carpet designs for Woodward Grosvenor.

Robin and Lucienne not only became Britain's most famous design couple, but also added a dose of glamour to post-war Britain. They featured in many magazine articles and in 1954 shone as a debonair couple in Smirnoff vodka advertising, surrounded by their furniture and textile designs.

For 25 years [1962-1987] they were consultants to John Lewis and introduced a new house style. Robin also designed the interiors for several Waitrose supermarkets and in the late 1990's, Habitat re-issued some of his earlier designs. As late as 2008, in the 7th decade of his career, he designed the RD wooden chair. He was still working early in 2010, sketching himself with his polyprop chair for the design store Twentytwentyone which they printed onto a tote bag.

Apart from his work, he was a great outdoor sports enthusiast, saying that it made him relax. He was quite a late starter: rock climbing took him from the Alps and Himalayas to the Atlas Mountains and Anatolia. Aged 61 he skied 2,500 miles across Lapland, Finland, Sweden and Norway over 12 weeks, shooting wild animals for food and sleeping in snow holes. At 76 he became one of the oldest climbers of Mount Kenya.

Throughout his career, he wasn't interested in the lure of fashion, but concentrated on functional and technically fitting designs. His experience of wartime austerity, made him sparing in use of materials and conscious of manufacturing time.

Lucienne aged 93 died in January 2010, and Robin, 95 died at home on 9th November the same year.

But when next you sit in the Manor Hall, and not on a blue upholstered seat, just think that you are sitting on an icon of British design - and that there have been around 49,999,999 other chairs seating countless other bums around the world on the same design! All because of the inventiveness of one man: Robin Day.

PP of DC




It might seem very early to be thinking of Christmas although the shops are already selling cards and decorations have been spied! But, it will be upon us before too long!

Sending greetings to friends and neighbours in the village through the Newsletter has become very popular and will happen again this year.

To you all, and particularly newcomers, if you would like to join in it is very simple. Please decide on your message and leave it with a donation at the Shop or Chicane as soon as possible and by Wednesday, 6th November at the latest.

The donations received are shared between the Newsletter [and the cost of printing them in beautifully bordered colour] and the Manor Hall. From previous years, both have enjoyed boosted funds, so please give as generously as possible.

I look forward to receiving many Christmas messages!




4th Ilfracombe Academy: Non-Pupil Day
6th St. Peter's: Harvest Family Service, 11.00 a.m.
8th Primary School: Harvest Festival
Parish Council Meeting, Parish Rooms, 7.00 p.m.
9th St. Peter's: Harvest Supper, 7.00 p.m. Manor Hall
12th Messy Churchy - Craft Activity, Combe Martin Village Hall, 9.30 a.m
16th Mobile Library in Village from 10.55 a.m.
Wine Circle, 8.00 p.m., Manor Hall: John Hood
28th to 1st November: Primary School Half Term
23rd Friendship Lunch, The Globe, 12.00 noon onwards
27th St. Peter's: Bible Sunday with Holy Communion, 11.00 a.m.
28th to 1st November: Ilfracombe Academy - Half Term
30th Mobile Library in Village from 10.55 a.m.
3rd St. Peter's: All Saints Day, Service in memory of loved ones.
6th Deadline for Newsletter items and Christmas Messages
9th Messy Church, Combe Martin Village Hall, 9.30 a.m.
Coffee Morning, Manor Hall, 10.00-12.30 p.m. for Jigsaw Projects
10th Remembrance Sunday St. Peter's: Service 10.45 a.m.
12th Parish Council Meeting, Parish Rooms, 7.00 p.m.
13th Mobile Library in Village from 10.55 a.m.
16th Bhangra Comes to Berry, 7.00 p.m., Manor Hall
20th Wine Circle, 8.00 p.m. Manor Hall: Jonathan Coulthar
27th Mobile Library in Village from 10.55 a.m.
Friendship Lunch, The Globe, 12.00 noon onwards
1st St. Peter's: Advent Sunday, Village Service, 11.00 a.m.

Manor Hall Diary
MondaysUpholstery, 9.00 to 1.00 p.m.
Craft Group 1.30 p.m.
Badminton, 7.30 p.m.
TuesdaysN.D. Spinners [2nd & 4th]
Yoga, 7.00 p.m.
WednesdaysPilates Body Workout, 9.00 a.m.
ThursdaysWatercolour Painting 10.00 a.m. [in 10 week term]
FridaysToddlers Soft Play and Activi a.m.
Penn Curzon RoomPre-School: Mon, Wed-Fri a.m. Mon-Wed p.m.
Mobile Library - Assistant: Jacqui Mackenzie
Village Shop : 10.45-11.30 a.m. Sterridge Valley : 11.45-12.15 p.m.

School, Pre-School and Toddler Group - Term Time only



Red o'er the forest peers the setting sun;
The line of yellow light dies fast away
That crown'd the eastern copse; and chill and dun
Falls on the moor the brief November day.

Now the tired hunter winds a parting note,
And Echo bids good-night from every glade;
Yet wait awhile and see the calm leaves float
Each to his rest beneath their parent shade.

How like decaying life they seem to glide
And yet no second spring have they in store;
And where they fall, forgotten to abide
Is all their portion, and they ask no more.

Soon o'er their heads blithe April airs shall sing,
A thousand wild-flowers round them shall unfold,
The green buds glisten in the dews of Spring,
And all be vernal rapture as of old.

Unconscious they in waste oblivion lie,
In all the world of busy life around
No thought of them-in all the bounteous sky
No drop, for them, of kindly influence found.

Man's portion is to die and rise again:
Yet he complains, while these unmurmuring part
With their sweet lives, as pure from sin and stain
= As his when Eden held his virgin heart.

John Keble [1792-1866]

Illustration by: Paul Swailes