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March 2010  

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Please note if you are in any Odell event and someone is taking pictures - make sure you tell them if you don't want to be in the picture!



We would like to wish Walt Nottage a very Happy 90th Birthday on the 10th March!  We hope you have a wonderful time on this very special day, Walt.  Best wishes from all of us!

And...Happy Birthday to Liane Fulford on the 4th March! 

Round and About 

The Very Long Arm of the Law 

Are you a law-abiding citizen?  You might think you are but there are many laws from 'Olde England' - quite strange in today’s eyes - that are still in force today.  I cannot help myself - I know I have touched on this subject before - but I find it fascinating, let alone somewhat stupid.  You may recognise a couple of them as I have mentioned them before. 

Did you know, for example, that the law required London taxi drivers to carry a bale of hay on the top of their cabs to feed the horse?  This law was not repealed until 1976!  Have you ever tried hailing a taxi as it speeds towards you, the "for hire" sign blazing like a beacon into the dark night?  Oh yes, you've guessed it.  You are breaking the law.  According to the Hackney Carriage Act of 1843 cabbies are allowed to seek custom only when they are stationary.  Thankfully the police have kindly agreed to turn a blind eye to this illegal practice.  However, under the same piece of legislation all taxi drivers are required to ask every passenger whether or not they have the plague! 

According to a law dating from the 16th century, it is illegal to stand, sockless, within 100 yards of the monarch.  Dog owners must ensure that their pooch does not come next or nigh the royal corgis.  A law dating back to 1714 states the "severest penalties will be suffered by any commoner who allows any such familiarity"! 

You can also be in trouble for beating your carpet on the street.  The Metropolitan Police Act of 1829 states you can be fined £200, unless such action takes place before 8.00 a.m.  This law was brought into force as part of an attempt to clean up the dirty streets of London. 

Thanks to Edward VI (the son of Henry VIII) anyone found breaking a boiled egg at the sharp end can be sentenced to 24 hours in the village stocks.  Some say this Royal Order was brought in because the King was very fastidious about etiquette.  I suppose they had to explain it away somehow! 

Flying a kite, sliding on the ice or slipping on the snow - indeed, pretty much anything that might be deemed fun - is forbidden by Section 54 of the Metropolitan Police Act 1939, if it is done on any street or thoroughfare.  Offenders could be fined £1,000 or 14 days imprisonment.  You have been warned!  Any beachcombers out there?  Then beware.   Should you come upon a dead whale on the shoreline do not be tempted to take it home with you.  The Royal Perogative of 1324 states the head of any dead whale or sturgeon automatically becomes the property of the King (if there is one) and the tail belongs to the Queen.  The idea being that this would "furnish the Queen's wardrobe with whalebone" with which to enhance the new style royal corsets!     

 Thanks to a law introduced in 1313 known as "Coming Armed to Parliament Act" it is illegal to enter Parliament wearing armour.  You might like to know that it is also illegal to drop dead in Parliament.  (As an aside - I am not at all clear how they can enforce a punishment for this one if you are dead).  However, the law was re-enacted by the Coroner’s Act of 1988.  Some people claim this to be a misunderstanding and that the law actually says 'that if anyone dies within the limits of any of the Queen's Palaces - of which Parliament is one - then a special inquest has to be carried out by the Queen's coroner'. 

It became illegal to eat mince pies anywhere in England on Christmas Day under the authority of Oliver Cromwell.  It was considered that pies were a forbidden pagan pleasure and on 22nd December 1657 his Puritan Council banned the consumption of mince pies. 

Cromwell banned a lot of other things considered to be pleasurable as well such as singing and dancing.  He was quite a killjoy.  His Parliament considered having "fun" to be far too frivolous.

Now, here's the really fun bit.  According to ancient statute it is still legal to murder a Scotsman within the ancient walls of York, but only if he is carrying a bow and arrow - and it’s not a Sunday.  It is also a risky business for a Welshman to visit Hereford on a Sunday, where it is still legal to shoot the Welsh all day, provided the deed is carried out by longbow - isn't life grand!

Barbara Corley

The Bell, Odell

Following thorough quality control audits, we are pleased to advise that ‘The Bell’ in Odell has been awarded membership to the prestigious Head Brewers Club, awarded by Greene King to its best real ale houses in the country. 

These may be difficult times and our village may be small but it is great to see our local continuing to thrive - make mine a pint please! 

Wode-Hill Jazz Band will be playing in ‘The Bell’ on Wednesday March 3rd from 7.30pm. 

Trad Jazz in the Bell the first Wednesday of the month



We welcomed Anne Doody back to speak to us this month.  Her topic was ‘The Life of a River’: such a simple title for a talk which covered so much.  With the help of some of her excellent slides she explored the life found in and around the riverbanks from when it was a small stream to when it entered the sea.  She covered bird life, insects, mammals and flowers and even threw in some historical facts.

It was an excellent talk and was greatly enjoyed by the members. 

March Meeting

We meet in the Village Hall Tuesday March 9th at 7.30pm.  Dennis Rowley from The Driving Standards Agency is our speaker.  He will be updating us on current driving legislation and making sure we are safe drivers.  The title of his talk is ‘Arrive Alive’. 


Photograph/picture of your favourite car. 


Sarah Bennett and Jill Cheadle are this month’s hostesses

Rachel Halton 720572 

Thank you

Sid and Betty Clark wish to thank family, friends and neighbours for their offers of support following both of their recent setbacks; a special thanks to those who gave up their time to take Betty to and from Addenbrooks Hospital to receive her treatment.  We are, and always will be, eternally grateful.

Once again thank you all very much.

Sid and Betty 

 Harrold-Odell Country Park 


Carlton Road, Harrold, Bedford MK43 7DSEmail:  Website:

Tel: 01234 720016 

Thanks to a grant from the Bedfordshire Rural Communities Charities (BRCC) we have now completed another phase of planting in the community orchard.  We can now boast about hazel, mulberry, cherry, chestnut and damson trees.  They all have mesh guards around them to prevent damage by deer, rabbits and squirrels.  We are hoping to have fruit in 3-4yrs and hold harvesting events at that time.  For more information, contact Richard Dowsett on 01234 720016. 

Conservation work has been in full swing with hedge laying and woodland coppicing the main activities.  We welcome questions about any aspect of our management work so please stop us if you see us out and about if there is anything you’d like to know. 

The repeated bouts of icy weather have wrecked the section of bridleway linking the main car park with the overspill.  We have had to make emergency repairs to some serious potholes that have appeared since Christmas.  These repairs are going to be refined over the coming month once we have received delivery of more material.  In the meantime please bear with us.

In the coming months, we are hoping to run a number of events in the park.  We are already running a popular health walk programme every other Thursday all year round, weather permitting.  Participants meet outside the café at 10.30am and we walk for an hour.  There is always the opportunity to have a coffee in the café afterwards.  Contact me at the park for more information or to register.  Tel. 01234 720016. 

Health Walk Dates:  

March: Thursday 4th & 18th at 10.30 am 

April: Thursday 1st ,15th & 29th at 10.30 am   

Friends Groups Conservation Days: 

March: Monday 22nd 10.00 am

April: Monday 26th 10.00 am 

We are negotiating with the Fire Brigade and Bedford Museum to organise joint events and our Friends Group will be running a series of small children’s events during  school holidays.  Please look on the park’s notice boards or log on to for further information.  We will put details there as soon as they are finalised.

Janet Munro, Assistant Ranger 

Sharnbrook Wildlife Trust

On Friday 19th March Henry Stanier will give an illustrated talk entitled ‘Bats’ at Sharnbrook Wildlife Trust meeting, at 8pm in the Methodist Church, Park Lane, Sharnbrook.  Members and non-members welcome.


The Mill Theatre, Sharnbrook

Play On - Tuesday 16 - Saturday 20 March  7.45pm 

The actors are squabbling, the tech goes awry, the author keeps rewriting the script!

A recipe for a hit? Definitely not, but it is a recipe for side-splitting belly laughs.

Rick Abbott’s hilarious comedy, about the trials and tribulations of an amateur drama group rehearsing and performing a murder mystery play, illustrates perfectly the old theatrical adage – if it can go wrong, it usually does!    A ‘must’ for March! 

Take advantage of Advance Booking!

During the above, tickets will be available, but only from the Mill Theatre, for: 

Man of La Mancha - Friday 14 - Saturday 22 May

An evening of moving, captivating theatre.  A musical within a play: the story of Don Quixote … and his ‘Impossible Dream’. 


Sharnbrook Post Office  (in person)

or Bedford Central Box Office  269519*

10% Discount on parties of 10 or more (excluding Charity Performances)

Allocated parking, Lift;  2 wheelchair spaces (please book through Central Box Office*), A - E  

Hold a Fish and Chip Supper to help spinal cord injured people live full and independent lives.” 

Great British Fish and Chip Supper

Friday 21st May 2010 

Want to do something different?  Want to raise money where you live or work?  Want to eat Fish and Chips, while raising money for charity? Hold a fish and chip supper on Friday 21st May 2010 whilst raising awareness of spinal cord injury and supporting SIA’s information and support services.  

You can hold a fish and chip supper in your own home, at work or hold a larger supper at your local community centre. 

SIA will provide a fundraising pack containing hints and tips, recipes, invitations and donation envelopes.  By inviting 7 friends and asking them to donate an additional £5.00 means you will raise at least £35.00 from your supper but we will also give you additional fundraising ideas to raise even more money for SIA. 

Last year we had over 80 suppers taking part in England and Wales.  In 2010 we want to double that figure and ensure we can provide more support to spinal cord injured people. 

The money raised from the suppers will help the Spinal Injuries Association offer support to individuals who become paralysed and their families, from the moment a spinal injury occurs, and for the rest of their lives by providing services and publications which enable and encourage paralysed people to lead independent lives. 

Every year in the UK over 1,000 people experience a spinal cord injury and there are an estimated 40,000 spinal cord injured people in the UK alone.  

Community Fundraising Officer, Elizabeth Wright, says, “The Fish and Chip Supper is a wonderful opportunity for a great evening with friends and family.  We are also encouraging people who work to hold a Fish and Chip Lunch in their work places to raise even more funds.  You may be even a local community group wanting to run a fun evening with your group. 

Be a part of something special and make a real difference to help spinal cord injured people gain access to the information and support they need to enable them to live full and independent lives.”

 For more information or request a fundraising pack call Elizabeth Wright on 0845 678 6633 xtn 229 or email or visit  

People willing to supply lifts to and from surgeries. 

Below is a list of the people currently willing to give lifts, to and from surgeries, to people who can’t otherwise get there:

Kim Beardow 721246

Jill Cheadle 720261

Jonathan Harrison 721115

Steve Robinson 720113

Marion Senn 721176

Linda Tringham 720120

Madeline Jeeves 720803

If anyone else is willing to be a volunteer please contact Jill on 720261. 



1st 7.30pm Lent Group, 3 Copperbeeches, Emmaus Village.

2nd 8.00pm Lent Group, 46 Harewelle Way, Harrold.

3rd 12.30pm Senior Citizens’ Fish and Chip Lunch, Village Hall.

3rd 1.30pm Lent Group, 32 Rectory Close, Carlton.

3rd 7.30pm Wodehill Jazz Band at The Bell.

3rd 7.30pm Lent Group, 30 Orchard Lane, Harrold.

4th 10.30am Lent Group, 40 High St, Harrold.

4th 10.30am Health Walk HOCP.

5th 11.00am Women’s World Day of Prayer, All Saints’ Church, Milton Ernest.

8th 7.30pm Lent Group, 3 Copperbeeches, Emmaus Village.

9th 7.30pm W.I. Odell Village Hall.

9th 8.00pm Lent Group, 46 Harewelle Way, Harrold.

10th 10.30am Meeting Point at The Rectory.

10th 1.30pm Lent Group, 32 Rectory Close, Carlton.

10th 7.30pm Lent Group, 30 Orchard Lane, Harrold.

11th 10.30am Lent Group, 40 High St, Harrold.

13th 10.00am Churchyard Tidy.

15th 7.30pm Lent Group, 3 Copperbeeches, Emmaus Village.

16th 8.00pm Lent Group, 46 Harewelle Way, Harrold.

17th 1.30pm Lent Group, 32 Rectory Close, Carlton.

17th 7.30pm Lent Group, 30 Orchard Lane, Harrold.

18th 10.30am Lent Group, 40 High St, Harrold.

18th 10.30am Health Walk HOCP.

20th 9.45am All Saints’ Amblers meet at The Bell.

22nd 10.00am HOCP Conservation Tasks day.

22nd 7.30pm Lent Group, 3 Copperbeeches, Emmaus Village.

23rd 8.00pm Lent Group, 46 Harewelle Way, Harrold.

24th 10.30am Meeting Point at Sarah’s, 9 Horsefair Lane.

24th 1.30pm Lent Group, 32 Rectory Close, Carlton.

24th 7.30pm Lent Group, 30 Orchard Lane, Harrold.

25th 10.30am Lent Group, 40 High St, Harrold.

29th 7.30pm Lent Group, 3 Copperbeeches, Emmaus Village.

30th 8.00pm Lent Group, 46 Harewelle Way, Harrold.

31st 1.30pm Lent Group, 32 Rectory Close, Carlton.

31st 7.30pm Lent Group, 30 Orchard Lane, Harrold. 


1st 10.30am Lent Group, 40 High St, Harrold. 

Magazine Deadline

Please send all entries for the April 2010 magazine to Tricia Hudson (mag1 at or Catherine Corkery by March 12th at the latest.  May we remind you that the editorial team exercises the right to edit, shorten or alter any items that are submitted.  Also, the opinions expressed in the articles are those of the contributors and are not the responsibility of the editorial team.



Alex Stubbs Flooring 

Carpets, Vinyls, Laminates, Safety Flooring, Adaptions, Refits, Repairs 

Supplied and Fitted 

07976 260572

01234 240954

Do you look after someone who is frail, ill or disabled?...

 ...that makes you a carer. 

For information, support and advice you can now ring the Bedfordshire Carers Helpline: 0300 0123435


Great local pubs

The Bell in Odell

As Featured in the 2010 Good Beer Guide 

With the relaxed charm of a village local and a varied menu of

quality, home-cooked food you won’t find any gimmicks here

 just a Great British Pub! 

Abbot Ale, IPA & Changing Seasonal & Guest Ales 

Live Trad Jazz first Wednesday  night of the month 

Telephone 01234 720254



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Last revised: March 01, 2010.