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September 2011 


See for Summer Wedding Pictures



Birthdays in September

Happy birthday to :


Christy Vyvyan who will be 12 on the 13th, and to

Sarah Jane Holden-Postles who will be 8 on the 19th  

And to everyone else with a birthday in September!



Round and About


My September Silly Season


At the back end of each summer, with much of the nation on holiday, the press and other media enter what they call the "silly" season when all sorts of weird and wonderful stories come to light.  In the spirit of the occasion I offer my own contribution for your amusement and entertainment.


My nonsense and trivia have all been culled from a book entitled "Do Cats have Belly Buttons" a humorous work that endeavours to answer 300 questions which none of us wished to ask in the first place.


Do you ever wonder why people feel dizzy when they stand on top of a tall building, or on the edge of a cliff, and look down?  According to scientists this feeling is a sense of disorientation as the brain tries to readjust and deal with the new perspective.  The brain is accustomed to observing the ground and surroundings from the height of the host body.  As people usually stand on the ground, and buildings, trees etc., stand at ground level, this is what the brain is accustomed to dealing with.  The brain, finding that the ground has disappeared, rushes to realign itself with the new situation and this rush of activity in the brain is what causes the dizziness.


How many parents have told their children not to swallow chewing gum in case it gets entangled with their insides?  Happily this cannot happen.  Although gum can stick to most things like shoes, pavements, chairs etc. it makes its way straight through the intestines as it cannot adhere to the moist and slippery walls of the guts.


Why is it that midges take a real fancy to some people and not to others?  It seems that everyone has their own particular smell caused by the amount of carbon dioxide that is expelled when people breathe.  The midges and mosquitoes can detect the difference and they express their preference by biting and feeding from the people with the most appeal.  Insect repellents work by masking these odours by creating a new smell that insects find repulsive - lemon and garlic work very well.


When we look up into the night sky, why do we always see the same side of the moon?  This is because the time it takes the moon to orbit the Earth happens to be the same time it takes the moon to rotate on its own axis.  The moon takes 27 days to revolve once round the Earth and 27 days to turn on its own axis.


It is rumoured that astronauts grow and become taller when they are in space.  This odd phenomena occurs because when in their space craft the astronauts do not experience the same sense of gravity as they would on Earth.  (This is why astronauts can be seen floating within their space craft).  As a result the vertebrae in the spine expand and the astronauts become slightly taller.  On return to Earth the sense of gravity quickly returns the astronauts to their normal height.


Why is it that when bats hang upside down the blood does not rush to their heads as it would with a human being?  All animals are designed to make sure that enough blood circulates round their bodies, regardless of what 'natural' position they are in.  The process involves the heart being able to pump the required amount of blood to the relevant parts of the body.  Bats have a proportionately larger heart than most other mammals enabling them to propel sufficient blood around their body to ensure that the head is properly supplied - even when hanging upside down.


Two questions about birds.  Why do we never see young pigeons and why do birds not get electrocuted when perching on high voltage cables?  Every year we see young ducklings and cygnets etc. and garden birds cramming food into the mouths of their youngsters, but we never see a young pigeon.  This is because the young pigeons remain on, or beside, their nest until they are 35 days old and fully fledged and at this stage it is impossible to tell the difference between the young birds and their parents.  The poser about power cables is all about atoms and electrons.  Electricity prefers to flow through the easiest route and metal provides the easiest route.  This is because tiny atoms which make up the metal contain even tinier electrons that can move from atom to atom.  So the electrons bounce from atom to atom taking the electricity along the wire with them.  When a bird lands on the cable the electrons cannot move into the atoms which form the bird's feet as they are not compatible.  So when faced with the two routes the electricity always chooses the wire with its much lower resistance.


Have you ever asked what holds up the sky?  After all, the atmosphere is made up exclusively of gases.  They can be squashed as their molecules have very loose bonds holding them together, as opposed to that of solid material, which have firm bonds to hold them together.  So, if the air is so squashy and flexible why doesn't gravity just act on the loosely attached molecules pulling them all down closer to the Earth?  Instead of being miles thick why can't the atmosphere be just a few metres thick?  The fact is it is the same flexible molecules that keep the air right where it is!  The movement of the gases' molecules is so great that they are never still long enough for gravity to act upon them.


So, what about the original question.  Do cats have belly buttons?  Yes they do - and it is located just below the rib-cage, similar to humans. However,  in animals it is little more than scar tissue due to the manner in which the mother cuts the umbilical cord with her teeth just after birth.  Barbara Corley





At our meeting in July, Odell WI members welcomed Julie Alum, a passionate and inspiring local Red Cross Fund Raiser for Bedfordshire, recruiting and working with volunteers.  Not only working internationally in 187 countries the Red Cross is very active locally giving assistance in many ways, such as supporting house fire and transport accident victims and loaning out medical equipment.  Become a volunteer by logging on to  In August members enjoyed a Bring and Share Summer Social at the home of Jim and Doreen Wheeler.


The next Meeting will be at the Village Hall on Tuesday, 13th September at 7.30pm when Mr R Haggerwood will entertain members to “Memories and Sayings”.


Hostesses are Jeni Cuddeford and Stasia Wherrett

New members are always welcome and if you need any more

information please ring Rachel Halton 720572


Lynette Hall


Odell Parish Council News

Parish Council:  Council held their last meeting on Monday 18th July and warmly welcomed Borough Councillor Alison Foster to another very productive meeting.

Highways:  Cllr Crotty advised that the potholes which have been reported in the past should be repaired during July/August.  The footway repairs (High Street) have been passed to Borough Council for

consideration.  Weed spraying on verges has been carried out recently and the drainage problem at Little Odell is due for further investigative work with a camera under the road to try to establish the problem.  Church Lane – repairs will be carried out in August, after the Water Board have completed their work.  Past surface dressing to the High Street has failed and will be redone in August.  A section of the Odell Road (Harrold) is scheduled for repairs in August – signage will go up preceding works.  Traffic calming – Tannery Lane and the section of the High Street by the ‘Mad Dog’ – Andrew Prigmore of Bedford Borough Council has indicated that no physical traffic calming would be placed in these areas, being impractical in a farming village.  Council have recommended that extra street signs are necessary (concealed entrance at Tannery Lane when approaching from village and also the area by the ‘Mad Dog’).  The two areas already hi-lighted for 30 m.p.h. speed extensions will be completed within the Borough Council’s financial year.  The speed will only be reduced to 40 m.p.h. in the section between Odell and Little Odell, not 30 m.p.h.  The section on the road near to Westwood Nurseries will be extended to 30 m.p.h.  There has recently been an increase in the number of cars parking on pavements and dangerous bends in the village – please do not do this as it is dangerous for pedestrians.  The Parish Council have asked the Police to carry out speed checks in future months.


Footpaths:  By the time you read this article, the damaged bridge on FP15 will have been replaced with a culvert and the broken stile will, hopefully, have been repaired.  The Parish Council continue to liaise with the Borough Rights of Way Officer to improve general clearance of the footpaths.


Harrold Odell Country Park:   Wonderful news – the Country Park has been awarded the Green Flag Award, for the third year running.  Congratulations to the ‘Friends’ of Harrold Odell Country Park and the incredibly hard working members of staff.  Odell WI have put the Park forward for a CPRE award – judging has taken place and results will be known at the beginning of October.


Police:  the local PCSO, Chris Warmington, carried out a village walkabout on the 4th August, the next one will be on Monday 5th September between 13:00 and 14:00.  At the most recent Police Joint Action Group meeting the top three priorities agreed for police attention are—reduce rural crime, tackle speeding and address fly tipping problems.


Planning application:  It may be useful to know that the Parish Clerk holds copies of all new planning applications.  If you would like to see any new plans please contact me.  Plans are also on the Bedford Borough Council website.  The Parish Council would like to remind parishioners that if they are thinking of any building work, they must contact the Borough Planning Office before any work is started.


Village Hall update:  most of the outside work is now completed and top soil has been laid.  If any parishioner is able to help with the seeding, raking and watering work please contact Cllr Brian Cheadle.  The old iron seat is to be replaced, we hope to obtain funding from the Ward Councillor’s Fund.


Bulky Waste Lorry:  next date for Odell is Sunday 23rd October 12pm – 3pm.


Bulb planting:  we have been offered free bulbs to plant around the village and will be holding this event on Saturday 5th November (more details in the next issue).


The next Parish Council Meeting is scheduled for Monday 19th September, 7.30pm, at the Village Hall.  As with all Parish Council meeting, parishioners are always welcome to attend.


If you have any concerns or would like to contact the Parish Council please see one of your Parish Councillors or contact me between 10am and 12 noon Monday to Friday – 01234 721812.  Appointments by prior arrangement.   A message can be left on the answer phone outside these times and I shall get back to you.  Alternatively, send me an email –


Nina Bransgrove-Knight  Clerk to Odell Parish Council     01234 721812  



Macmillan Big Coffee Morning

Friday September 23rd

10.00am - 12.30pm

at Bridgman's Bowls Club, Harrold



More officers to tackle Crime in Our Communities


Bedfordshire Police have drawn up ambitious plans to improve the service provided by the Force while also saving taxpayers’ money.


From October 2011, the Force and the Police Authority will deliver a more streamlined process to improve both operational capacity and capability.  This means that more officers will be available to deal with incidents reported to us by the public.


The Force carried out a detailed review of the way it organised key departments to identify areas where costs could be cut and performance improved.  During the process, residents confirmed they were happy for structural matters to be dealt with by the Force so long as they received an appropriate police response when needed and crime continued to fall.


The new changes will see the number of police officers dedicated to local policing double from 92 to 185. This means a larger number of officers will be available to tackle local crime, anti-social behaviour and other community concerns while PCSOs will carry out more patrols.


There will no longer be any geographic boundaries or divisions separating communities.  Instead, a Chief Superintendent will oversee Local Policing while another will be responsible for Tackling Crime.


Through reorganisation, the Force and the Police Authority will speed up response times.  A new centralised team will respond to incidents, county-wide officers will get to where they are needed more quickly as well as save money.


Meanwhile, a greater number of incidents will be resolved over the telephone to reduce demand on frontline staff thanks to a new appointment system for non-emergency issues.  A recent survey found that people accepted this as a good way of dealing with non-urgent matters.  A new three digit non-emergency number will be introduced in the autumn, after which time all you will need to dial is 101 for non-urgent situations.


Peter Conniff, Chair of Bedfordshire Police Authority, said: “We’ve listened to our residents throughout the review process and their comments have very much informed our strategic decisions.  The changes have been made to promote greater access to police services and deliver a more effective response that meets the expectations of our communities.”


Rosie Harper

Administration Officer

Bedfordshire Police Authority



Harrold-Odell Country Park

Carlton Road, Harrold, Bedford MK43 7DS

Email:  Website:

Tel: 01234 720016


News From Harrold Odell Country Park


September already!  The year is whizzing by!  When are we going to get some rain?  I’m writing this in August and we have been starved of rain for the last 6months.  It has been a long time since we’ve had a drought as severe, maybe as far back as 1976 although Scotland has been “blessed” with more than usual.  The river is 2m below average flow and the small lake looks more like a puddle where it backs on to the car park.


Looking around the park, a lot of trees are showing signs of stress with drooping leaves which are yellowing prematurely.  Our ponds have dried up which is not good news for amphibians like frogs, toads and newts.  The grass in the river meadow has not grown as much as usual which will affect the amount available to our cattle.  We are praying that we get some soon or some of the more fragile habitats will be in serious trouble.


Water quality in the large lake has suffered with a bloom of blue-green algae  Visitors need to keep dogs out of the water until further notice and it is against the byelaws for people to go into the lakes for any reason.  With the mega dry conditions we will be extra vigilant about barbeques in the park which are not permitted as they are a fire and litter hazard.


The sprucing up of the bird hide is almost complete.  The new cabinets paid for from car park donations by our Friends Group are now in place.  We are now busy choosing a suite of pictures to go in them to give visitors information about the park’s flora and fauna.  This will be sorted very shortly.


In addition to this we are in the final stages of getting a new park leaflet printed by the Borough Council’s Reprographics Team and another detailing the 6mile circular walk that takes people around the immediate area including Odell Great Wood.  People can access ideas for getting out and about by logging on to or find out more about the park on the Friends website   Once these are delivered, they will be available from the stand inside the café annexe room.


For the 4th year in a row we have won a Green Flag Award, a mark of excellence for parks and open spaces.  This time however, thanks to members of the Friends Group, we actually have a bone fide flag pole to show it off.  Previously we had a tiny pole attached to the side of the café.  This was vandalised a few weeks ago so a solution had to be found.


The new pole was laying redundant in one of the Bedford parks so we purloined it and thanks to Simon Carter, Trevor Sudds and David Bedborough it is now erected in front of the disabled parking area.  Our thanks go to every one of our volunteers who contribute every week to the running of the park because without their input, we wouldn’t have won.


The fishing season is well under way and some big fish have been caught despite the difficult low water conditions.  A Barbel weighing 10lb 4ozs and roach to 1lb 6ozs came out of the river while the lakes have yielded carp to 20lb, large bream and tench.  From October onwards the pike season starts and fish to 30lb can be caught from the large lake.


Our fishing is leased to Vauxhall Angling Club who also manage waters at Sharnbrook and other parts of the County.  A season’s membership (June 16th – March 14th) costs £55.00 per adult with concessions for OAP’s and juniors.  Trevor Smith, the park’s Bailiff, has membership books for sale from the workshop behind the café (cash only).  Alternatively log on to for more info.


We’ve been seeing specimens of a rare longhorn beetle Aromia Moschata or Musk Beetle in the park during August.  This is a large, slow flying metallic beetle with greenish metallic wing cases and antennae that are longer than its body.  They emit a musky odour when disturbed and their larvae live inside wood.  If you encounter one of these please do not destroy it.  These are rather rare and special insects.


We had a rather disturbing incident recently when a dog attacked a family of swans, particularly their cygnets.  Naturally enough their parents set about the dog and gave it quite a hiding.  Luckily, they

managed to protect all 7 of their babies.  If you are a dog owner and you know that it will disturb livestock or wildlife then we insist that your pet stays on a lead.  May we remind visitors that dogs are not permitted in the nature reserve and both Richard and I are authorised to issue fixed penalty notices for fouling, littering and breaches of the byelaws.


On a much happier note an otter and cub has been seen in the park by night anglers at the end of July.  Kingfishers are also patrolling the far bank of the river.  For the latest sightings, look on the blackboard outside the café.


A 25lb 11oz pike caught in the Park on 16th Jan 2011



Dates for your diary.


Health Walks

Meet every other Thursday outside the café at 10.30am.  Walk for 1hr with the option afterwards of having coffee and a natter in the café.  Leader Janet Munro 01234 720016 or e-mail

Sept. 1st, 15th and 29th

Oct. 13th and 27th


Craft Fair

October 16th 11am – 4pm.  All stallholders are required to have public liability insurance and bring their own tables and gazebo.  All enquiries please to Derek Henderson tel. 07917 783010 or e-mail


Friends Conservation Tasks

Meet at the café at 10am.  Refreshments provided but bring a packed lunch and wear stout footwear and old clothing.

26th September

Janet Munro



Tales from the Scotch Mist


I write in response to Barbara Corley’s article ‘Chainsaw Magic’ in the July/August issue of the church magazine.  Firstly to say thank you for her kind words and secondly to provide an update on the wooden creatures that currently lurk in the Scotch mist and sawdust, near the overflow car park in Harrold - Odell Country Park.


Danny has indeed proved to be a much talked about feature sitting watching out over the lake.  He remains in the Park but a collection of other sculptures recently moved not far away to a nature trail in

Clapham.  It’s situated behind the allotments off the main high street and is fast being developed into a mini oasis of trees and sculptures along a winding path.  Local school children were involved in making many of the creatures carved and thus the caterpillar mentioned by Barbara eventually became none other than ‘The Very Hungry Caterpillar’ climbing over fruit, cakes, lollies and sausages, as described in the famous book.  A second sculpture features the giant cocoon and a beautiful butterfly that he turned into.


There are shaggy ink cap mushrooms that have ‘grown’ over 6ft tall, otters rising from reeds, a tree of birds, enormous insects and several of the other pieces afore mentioned in the last magazine.  I hope some of you will be able to get over to the Millennium Park in Clapham to see them when it opens soon.


Back to the Country Park and there are bears and wolves now emerging from the upright logs.  A parliament of owls is usually to be found in the shed, though some additions are urgently needed as stocks are low.  Two frogs will compete for preference in the eyes of a commissioning visitor and watch this space as a life sized crocodile will soon be emerging as if from the stardust.  

Carrie Yuen



Village Hall News 


On Friday 9th/Saturday 10th 

September the Village Hall

celebrates its actual birthday weekend!


Friday 9th September, Beer Festival.  The Hall bar will be open with a selection of local beers from Hopping Mad Brewery in

Olney on sale from 7.30-11.30pm.  Other drinks will also be






Saturday 10th   

6pm Beer Festival

6-8pm Hog Roast

8pm until midnight Hair of the Dog

Tickets : £10, from Nikki Freeman



Looking further ahead into the autumn:


Village Quiz, 8th October – contact Rob Lee.  More details in the October magazine.


And Melvis returns in November – date to be confirmed nearer the time.



The Mill Theatre, Sharnbrook

Reg. Charity No 242164  


Sharnbrook Mill Theatre, (SMTT) in conjunction with
Bedford University Travelling Theatre (BUSTT*) present


September 20th – 24th :7.45pm
Dead Guilty  A Psychological Thriller of guilt and obsession by Richard Harris.

When John Haddrell dies of a heart attack at the wheel of his car with his lover beside him, two women end up locked in deadly combat…..

You may think you know what’s happening…you may be right…but…


(Dead Guilty replaces Wait until Dark, which has been withdrawn by the copyrighters from performance).


Tickets: £8-£10 available now! From: Sharnbrook Post Office - in person

Bedford Central Box Office  01234 269519*   10 % discount for 10 or more (excluding Charity performance).  *2 wheelchair spaces, easier access seating Rows A – C; hearing loop Rows A -E


Advance Booking will be available at the theatre during ‘Dead Guilty’ for:
Half a Sixpence 
11th – 19th  November 2011, 7.45 pm,
Matinée Saturday 19th November, 2.00 pm


Flash, Bang, Wallop! What a show!

A sparkling new version by Warner Brown of the classic show, featuring underprivileged

orphan Arthur Kipps, who inherits a fortune ….then loses it, but in the process discovers his true love…..

The show includes the old favourite songs ‘Flash, Bang, Wallop!’ ‘In The Cause of Economy,’ and ‘Half A Sixpence’, plus nine new ones, including the show-stopping

belter ‘What Should I Feel’.

A wonderful, traditional, fun musical for all the family

Please visit our website: for more information



1st 10.30am Health walk, HOCP.

4th 2.30pm Afternoon tea, Harrold URC.

5th 1-2pm PCSO walkabout.

7th 10.30am Meeting Point at Jill’s, Rectory Farm.

9th 7pm Village Hall Beer Festival.

10th 4pm Hog roast and entertainment, Village Hall.

10th Beds and Herts Historic Churches Trust Bike ‘n Hike.

11th 2.30pm Afternoon Tea, Harrold URC.

13th 7.30pm W.I. Village Hall.

15th 10.30am Health Walk, HOCP.

17th 9.45am All Saints’ Amblers meet at The Bell.

18th 2.30pm Afternoon tea at Harrold URC.

19th 7.30pm Parish Council meeting, Village Hall.

21st 10.30am Meeting Point at Jane Smith’s, 4a Horsefair Lane.

23rd 10am Macmillan Coffee Morning, Bridgman’s Bowls Club, Harrold.

25th 2.30pm Afternoon tea at Harrold URC.

26th 10am Conservation Tasks Day, HOCP.

29th 10.30am Health Walk, HOCP.


1st 10am Church decorating for harvest.

2nd 10.30am Harvest Festival service, All Saints’ Church.

2nd 12.30 Harvest Lunch, Village Hall.




Alex Stubbs Flooring 

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

Supplied and Fitted 

07976 260572

01234 240954


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 

Telephone 01234 720254


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Last revised: August 22, 2011.