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 October 2013

Round and About 

Lost in Translation 

I have been reading in the newspaper of a perplexity in the minds of many people, especially from overseas, concerning a flaw in the British personality.  It would appear that we British are the bane of our overseas friends when it comes to being too prim and polite to tell the truth as it is, but to wrap it up in a polite euphemism. 

It seems this trait in the British personality is leaving our foreign friends perplexed and bewildered as to the truth of what we are actually saying.  So often the words that we say are taken for their literal meaning…and the rest gets lost in translation. 

When we start a sentence with the phrase “I hear what you say....” our foreign friends will take the words at face value when what we really mean is  “I hear what you say but I totally disagree with what you say and I don’t want to hear any more about it”.   “With the greatest respect” most likely translates as “You must be mad!”… but this is not what people hear. 

“That was a very brave proposal” carries a similar meaning and should be heard as “You are beyond belief!  - or insane!”.  “I will bear that in mind” should be seen as “I have forgotten your idea already”.  The statement of “I would suggest” quite obviously means you can do it my way or forget the whole idea!  While the interjection “...oh, incidentally” or “by the way” means that what follows is the primary purpose of the entire conversation. 

The British ability for double-speak seems to have no end.  “That is not bad” translates into “That is quite good”, whereas “Quite good” means “disappointing”.  “I was a bit disappointed” interprets as “I was really annoyed” or “disappointed”.  Always beware of the statement “I am sure it was my fault really ”because this is not what the speaker means at all – quite the opposite in fact.  The speaker is convinced that it is all your fault!   “I almost agree” is an ‘almost’ clear statement that you will never reach an agreement and that it is useless to proceed.  As for the statement “I have only a few minor comments” this clearly means please re-write the whole thing again, and when it comes to “could we consider some other options”  it should read as  “I do not like your ideas at all”. 

The British habit of not wishing to hurt anybody’s feelings by saying, in blunt terms, what they really mean is known by the phrase as wrapping it up in clean linen! 

Should you find yourself in the company of a new acquaintance who says to you brightly “...Oh, you must come to dinner some time...”, he really means “forget it  - you will never hear from me again!”. 

Our ability for double-speak has many people confused as to what we are really saying and when it comes to our foreign friends who interpret what we are saying and take our words literally ... well, they are left baffled and floundering.                                                                                Barbara Corley

W.I. News

The speaker for our September meeting was Nicki Freeman who talked about volunteering for the London 2012 Olympic Games.  Her duties were to help and assist the Olympic team from The Federated Stated of Micronesia (FSM), a group of islands in the Pacific Ocean. The team comprised of 6 competitors including swimming, running, weight lifting and wrestling plus coaches, a doctor, press attaché and team manager. Nicki spent nearly 4 weeks with the team in the Olympic Village and once they had all finished competing her duties included driving the team members around the country sightseeing including a visit to Olney & Odell, Stonehenge and The Houses of Parliament. 

Our next meeting will be in the Village Hall on Tuesday 8th October at 7.30pm and will be a Members’ Evening.  Members will be Play Reading.  Perhaps we shall have some budding actresses in our midst?

Hostesses are Jane Smith and Audrey Dempsey.

New members are always welcome and if you need any more information please ring Karen Boyes, 720952.  Ladies, just come along to the Village Hall on the second Tuesday of each month and see what we do and how we enjoy ourselves.  To find out more about the WI go to or the local British Federation website Jane Eshelby


Alison Foster, Borough Councillor for Odell

September 2013 Update

Contact Alison: If you have any issues or concerns you would like to raise with me directly I can be contacted on my mobile 07773371190 or by email on 

Local News

Podington Wind Farm

The High Court recently threw out the Borough’s s.288 High Court challenge to the Podington Wind Farm planning permission granted by the Planning Inspectorate. The Court rejected all the grounds of appeal made by the Borough.  I understand that the Borough’s Counsel advised strongly against any further appeal.  This means that the wind farm development in Podington is now likely to go ahead. 

Nunn Wood Wind Farm

The appeal was heard at the beginning of June.  This appeal has been called in by the Secretary of State who will now make a decision once he has received the Planning Inspector’s report. 

Wind Farms

Rt Hon Eric Pickles MP Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government recently issued a statement announcing new guidelines in respect of wind farms developments.  This came out during the Nunn Wood Inquiry.  The new guidance will state clearly that: 

The need for renewable energy does not by definition override environmental protections and the planning concerns of local communities.

Decisions should take into account the cumulative impact of wind turbines and properly reflect the impact on (a) the landscape and (b) local amenity.

Local topography should be a factor in assessing whether wind turbines have a damaging impact on the landscape. For example, it should be recognised that the impact on predominantly flat landscapes can be as great or greater than on hilly or mountainous ones.

Great care should be taken to ensure heritage assets are conserved in a manner appropriate to their significance, including the impact of proposals on views important to their setting. 

The Government is looking to local councils through their Local Plans to implement policies which ensure that adverse impacts from wind farm developments, including cumulative landscape and visual impact, are addressed satisfactorily.


Gypsy and Traveller Sites

The Borough Planning Committee recently refused the Borough’s own planning application for a Gypsy and Traveller site at Fairhill, in the urban area near to Sainsbury’s and the Paula Radcliffe Way.  This was a surprise particularly since the application for 14 pitches was recommended for approval by the Borough’s own planning officers and fully compliant with the Borough’s own policies.   The Borough’s other choice of site, Meadow Lane, has been beset by problems since it obtained planning permission in 2012 and no development has taken place at the site.  In the absence of an alternative Borough owned site in the urban area, the Planning Committee’s decision leaves the rural areas open to private speculative developments.  A number of small privately owned sites have already gained planning permission on appeal through the Planning Inspectorate because of the Borough’s failure to provide sufficient pitches of its own to satisfy locally assessed need.  A group of 5 rural Borough Councillors submitted their own revised planning application for the Fairhill site at the beginning of July which addresses the weak reasons for refusal of the Planning Committee.  This is likely to be heard by the Planning Committee on 23rd September.   

Police Survey

Police and Crime Commissioner Olly Martins has just launched a survey which it is very important for rural residents to respond to.  He is looking at alternative ways of contacting the police in non-emergency situations via modern media for example skype, he is also looking at ways of cutting costs and one of the potential proposals is to close some police stations including Riseley.  The survey can be accessed through the following link:  I would encourage all residents to respond with their views.   

Broadband Update

The Council has provided an updated timeline for its Joint Local Broadband Plan, which is being carried out alongside Milton Keynes and Central Bedfordshire Councils.  The objective of the Plan is to provide superfast broadband (minimum 24Mbps) to 90% of premises in the Borough (currently 77%) and basic speeds (at least 2Mbps) to all premises. 

The contract was given to BT recently.  A planning and mobilisation stage will then begin during the remainder of this year and the contract will be delivered between 2014 and 2016. 

In terms of funding when the original BDUK funding allocations were made it was expected that if matched by the local areas, (the Borough arranged this) the funding should be sufficient to reach 90% superfast coverage. 

However, when BT did their ‘modelling’ for the Borough with this funding they found that the Borough had significant areas that had ‘very rural’ characteristics in respect of its settlement pattern (eg dispersed small settlements) and telecomms infrastructure (eg lots of exchange only lines) and that this superfast coverage could not be achieved with the funding available. 

Additional funding was allocated but even this proved insufficient so Borough officers argued for and were awarded some further funding. This was the maximum they could get and an early task for BT is to remodel with this funding. We await the outcome, hope it will be close to if not 90% coverage, and the Borough hopes to make the geography of that coverage publicly available in an appropriate form as soon as possible, hopefully by the end of October. (by the way don't expect Odell to be included for anything faster than the current 2MB/s - we haven't even got Gas!!! - webmaster's note added) 

I have asked the Borough officers to look in particular at Broadband provision in Podington and Hinwick where connectivity is particularly bad. 

Borough News

Bedford Hospital Paediatric Services

As of the beginning of August, Bedford Hospital has scaled back its paediatric services following the removal of 7 junior doctors from its Riverbank Ward.  This course of action was taken by Health Education East of England after the junior doctors raised concerns that they were not receiving adequate supervision.  A number of services for 0 – 19 year olds have been suspended as a result; 

· The Hospital will provide A & E services for minor injuries, such as stitching a wound or providing an X-ray.  However, A & E services for more serious cases will no longer be provided.  In these instances the Hospital is encouraging parents and guardians to call an ambulance so their child can be taken to the next nearest hospital with a paediatric unit.

· The families of around 260 patients with open access to the Riverbank Ward will have to travel to receive care at alternative hospitals.

Planned operations and follow up care requiring overnight stays have been moved to other hospitals.  This will affect 3 patients a week on average.

The following services will not be affected by the changes;

· Children’s outpatient services.

· Maternity and neo-natal.

· Day unit for planned procedures and care following planned procedures.

Nurse-led ambulatory care for children with long term conditions. 

Sports Classes

The Council is offering sports sessions such as basketball and tennis for individuals with learning and / or physical disabilities at the Athletics Stadium every Monday from 2pm – 3.15pm.  There is no need to book to participate.  Sessions such as table tennis and badminton will also be available for those aged 70 and over at Bedford Central Library on Mondays between 11am – 12pm and at the Bunyan Centre on Wednesdays between 2pm – 3pm. 

More information for both schemes is available by calling 01234 718835. 


New Chairman

Rachel Halton has taken over from the outgoing Chairman.  Mandy Hinds has taken on the role of Vice-Chairman.   Cllr. Crotty has resigned as he will shortly be moving out of the area; the resulting vacancy has been advertised and a new councillor will be elected at the November meeting.   

HOCP Odell Play Area

Regular safety inspections are undertaken of the play area equipment, however, if you do notice any defects please mail the parish clerk on or contact any parish councillor.   


The Yelnow BOAT remains closed to motorised vehicles and horse drawn carriages, however, vegetation does cover some of the deep ruts - walkers and horse riders are advised to proceed carefully.

Some landowners are not maintaining footpaths across their land and this has been raised with Bedford Borough yet again  

Anglian Water

There have been problems with drainage in Mill Lane and this has now been rectified by Anglian Water who have replaced some of the pumps at the AW station in Horsefair Lane. 


The potholes at the Little Odell junction have still not been repaired- this will be taken up with Bedford Borough Highways help desk.   

Grounds Maintenance

Permission has now been granted by Bedford Borough Council for the Village Hall car park lime trees to be professionally maintained.  Contractors will start work on this early October during which time there will be restrictions on car park use.   Further work will be carried out during the autumn to maintain other trees in the car park area. 


NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN pursuant to Section 87(2) of the Local Government Act 1972 that a Member of the above Parish Council has ceased to be a Member and that a casual vacancy exists in the office of Councillor for this Parish.  The vacancy will be filled at the Parish council Meeting on 18th November.

 If you are interested in this role please email the Parish Clerk ( or speak to one of your Parish Councillors for an informal discussion (Brian Cheadle, Nick Goodman, Rachel Halton, Steve Robinson, Tim Freeman, Mandy Hinds). 

Village Hall 

The Village Hall committee held a coffee morning on Saturday 14th September at which we were able to talk with villagers about the hall and ways to generate more interest.  As you may be aware, attendances have been getting fewer and fewer over the past year resulting in the cancellation of some activities.  We had a small but positive attendance at the coffee morning and the hall committee will discuss the suggestions at their next meeting.  Thank you all for your support. 

If you were unable to attend but still wish to suggest ideas or pass on any comments please contact any committee member and let them know your views. 

In the meantime book your tickets now for the theatre production of “The Fossil Lady of Lyme” being held on 12th October.  Feel free to bring your supper.  A bar will be available for your drinks.  It will be a good night out for only £8. 

In November (16th) we will see the return of the ever popular “Melvis”.  A great evening’s entertainment is guaranteed!

By the time you read this, the popular quiz will have taken place and triumphant winners once again with their pictures posted here in the magazine.  Please continue to support the hall; it is our hall and it would be great to see it continue as a core feature of our village.  Rob Lee


The Fossil Lady of Lyme


Imagine: the world is only 6000 years old and everything was created in six days…This was the England into which Mary Anning was born, - just two hundred years ago.

Then came the pioneering work of geologists, studying rocks and fossils.  The accepted truths about the world were blown apart.  Within a generation, it was proved that there had been a vast prehistoric age, when unimaginable monsters roamed the earth and swam in the seas.

Mary Anning played a key part in this extraordinary time.  She discovered the first complete fossil of a prehistoric reptile in Great Britain – at the age of twelve.  Throughout her life she continued to make ground-breaking and spectacular discoveries.

In Alison Neil’s one-woman play, Mary Anning tells her fascinating story, and that of “the fine clever men of science” who took most of the credit for her work. The entertaining tale of her life, her friendships, her struggle to make her mark (and put food on the table) is both amusing and moving.

And…by the end of the show, you will surely know the difference between an ichthyosaur and a plesiosaur!

‘Bring & Share’ Harvest Supper

7.00pm Saturday 5th October

Odell Village Hall 

This year we are supporting ‘The Honey Project’delivering a sweeter deal to people in Ethiopia 

Guest Speaker – Harry Inman - ‘Why bees matter – here & in Africa’ 

Phone Jill on 720261, or Nikki on 720893 to order your ticket (£2 each to cover expenses – under 18s free) and say what food you can bring. Licensed Bar

News from Harrold Odell Country Park 

We are officially into autumn again.  We know this to be true because the Christmas mince pies are already in the shops!  Can’t they show us some mercy for once? 

For us it means that the winter work programmes are set to begin.  When the flowering and wildlife breeding season is over we can begin to coppice and thin out the willow trees, undertake tree surveys to assess their safety and overall health and clean out the ditches to help any winter flood water to escape more quickly. 

The flooding last year was so bad that we couldn’t get into the nature reserve to do any of the work we wanted.  We’re hoping things will be more moderate this year.  The willows desperately need thinning out in there as there are too many thin straggly specimens which will never amount to anything good.  Coppicing will enable us to have trees of differing ages and growth stages because they will re-grow from the stumps.  If left untouched for the next 25yrs they will become new fully grown trees but we’ll probably harvest them for stakes & binders or weavers for basket making etc. just as our ancestors did thousands of years ago. 

This in turn will appeal to a wide range of insects, animals and birds.  We’ll also be creating habitat piles with some of the more rotten timber.  These will harbour insects for the birds to eat and hiding places for our amphibians (frogs, toads & newts) and reptiles like grass snakes.  Any surplus timber gets seasoned for a year, split and sold as firewood to benefit the park. 

This year, Bedford Borough Council has been proactive in the education of dog owners with regards to fouling and worrying livestock like sheep for example.  There are also horse riders who use the bridleway running through the centre of the park to consider. 

We have cattle in the river meadow and there have been a few instances when owners have not had their dogs under control and allowed them to chase and nip at their heels.  This is very irresponsible as cattle can be unpredictable.  Ours are generally very mellow but there is only so much they will put up with. 

There have also been a couple of fixed penalty notices issued with regards to fouling & failing to clean up.  There is no excuse – we provide bags free of charge to anyone who needs them and bins are stationed around the park within easy reach of the contractor who comes to empty them.  Please be warned that enforcement officers are regularly visiting the park and that Richard & I are authorised enforcement officers ourselves.  We don’t want to be issuing fines but we will if we have to.  Everyone is aware of their responsibilities in this matter. 

We have a new fishing bailiff, a young man from Harrold called Paul Oliver who has taken over from our lovely Trevor since he passed away in August.  He will be out and about checking fishing permits and looking out for swims to be cleared for the foreseeable future.   

Next season, which starts on June 16th 2014, those anglers who purchase season permits for Harrold will also be entitled to fish the lakes & river at Priory Country Park, Barkers Lane, Bedford & vice versa.  I believe that prices will be going up about 4% compared to this year but you’ll get more waters to fish for your money. 

Dates for your diary

Health Walks

These occur every other Thursday at 10.30am.  We meet at the café entrance at 10.30am and walk for an hour to improve your health & wellbeing, hopefully making friends along the way.  There’s an option for a coffee & a natter in the café afterwards.  Leader Janet Munro tel 01234 720016 or e-mail

October 10th & 24th November 7th & 21st December 5th &19th

Friends Conservation Days

Meet at the Ranger’s Office at 10am with sturdy clothes, footwear & a packed lunch.  We provide refreshments & tools.  Usually held on the last Monday of the month (a week earlier if a bank hol.)

October 28th & November 25th       

December 16th Friends Social – Buffet lunch for registered Friends volunteers only - no task that day.

Janet Munro, Ranger


Urgent News from the HOCP Carver 

I write a sad postscript to my article last week. Over the Bank holiday weekend my container in the Park was broken into and all my power tools that I have spent the past 5 years building up were stolen. The thieves used my trollies to haul the goods back to the car park and so this must have happened after the Park gate closed. The police say the rain would have washed away any evidence. No one is interested in checking through the CCTV unfortunately or protecting what’s left. I wasn’t insured because without any fence or gate marking the boundaries of my space it has been impossible for me to get insurance. 

Can I appeal to the folk of Harrold and Odell for information? Do you know someone who has recently acquired a lot of tools? By now the stuff will no doubt have been sold. I estimate the value of my losses to be around £3000 pounds but it’s difficult to come up with a definitive figure as I keep making new discoveries. A few days ago I went to get my tool box for example and realised it had gone too. Anyone with a full tool box knows how difficult it is to remember all those hundreds of little bits and pieces that are so essential when you need them. 

I’m down but not out. I still have chainsaws so for anyone who has asked for a pre-Christmas carving I am going to do my best to ensure the carving is done and finished – with borrowed tools if necessary. 

Thank you in advance for your vigilance.

Once again my contact information is:

07962 669899 

The Mill Theatre, Sharnbrook 

Company - Tuesday 19th - Saturday 23rd November, 7.30 pm

A bittersweet masterpiece from the incomparable Sondheim 

This super-funny musical comedy, explores the pros and cons, ups and downs and  ins and outs of being single. 

Presented as a series of vignettes, it throws a comic spotlight on the eternal issues faced by intimately involved couples… 

While relationships rarely turn out as they do in fairy tales, life is still better when you have someone to share it with. 

Words & Music: Stephen Sondheim,

Book: George Furth 

Tickets for Company   £11-£13   on sale from 30th September from: :
Sharnbrook Post Office (in person) or
Bedford Central Box Office* – 718112  ( Bedford Tourist Information Centre in St Paul’s Sq.)  and

10 % discount for 10 or more (excluding Fri., Sat. & Charity performance)

* 2 wheelchair spaces, easier access seating Rows A – C: hearing loop Rows A – E. 

PERFORMERS! Spring  2014 

On Golden Pond   Show dates: Monday 17th to Saturday 22nd March 2014

Workshops: Tues. 29th and Thurs. 31st October 7.30 pm.

Auditions: Sun. 3rd November, Mill Theatre

For further details, please contact Director Pat Gale: or (01234) 823889.

You are warmly invited to the Mill Theatre –  

..on Wednesday 27th November, 12.30 for 1pm, for a 2-Course Lunch With a glass of wine, to be followed by a Seasonal Talk by Anita Marie Sackett:

The Christmas Customs in Victorian Times and their Pagan Origins 

Tickets: £15 Christine Summerling: 01832 730255, Virginia Pope: 01933 356974, Erica Lester: 01234 781210 

To hire the Clubroom/Auditorium please contact Sally Wildman (

MOVIES AT THE MILL - A ‘Warm up Appeal’ event   

A new venture for Sharnbrook Mill Theatre starts this autumn – Movies at the Mill!  No more traipsing to Bedford or Kettering, here is the opportunity to watch blockbusters, in a convivial atmosphere, with a glass of wine or coffee, right on your doorstep in Sharnbrook – at a fraction of commercial cinema prices.   

The first show will be on Saturday, 5 October –  JANE EYRE starring Mia Wasikowska, Michael Fassbender, and Jamie Bell (of Billy Elliott fame).   Tickets are £6 to include your first drink.  The bar opens at 7 pm and the film starts at 7.30 pm.  

Doug Pope, Chairman of the Sharnbrook Mill Theatre Trust, tells us “This is an exciting new project for us which has been prompted by an enthusiastic response to a survey carried out with Sharnbrook Learning for Pleasure members who wanted to see films in a local, comfortable location.  At this first showing, which will be held in our function room, we plan to invite suggestions for future film choices so that we can plan a programme for the autumn and winter. 

As you know, we have ambitious plans to improve the heating and ventilation in our main theatre, and our aim is eventually to be able to hold film showings in the main auditorium.  All profits from this first show will go towards our fundraising for this major project.”

The scope for Movies at the Mill to develop as a major part of Sharnbrook Mill Theatre’s annual programme has great potential – themed shows, shows and suppers, Continental film seasons – the audience will have a key role in helping us to make this dynamic and fun.

* Tickets available now, from: Sharnbrook Post Office, Learning for Pleasure,–        Everyone is welcome!


Summer School 2013

The annual Summer School took place from Monday 29th July to Saturday 3rd August, with a performance in the main theatre on the Saturday evening.

The event was fully subscribed with 40 attendees ranging from 9 to 18 years of age. 

The theme was ‘Dark and Light’.  Workshops in Dance, Drama, Music and Singing were held where all students had the opportunity to participate in all the activities.  Students had the opportunity to opt for two of the workshop disciplines that they then focused on for the remaining sessions of the week in readiness for a performance on the Saturday evening.  There were also whole-group singing sections to the show.

The show was sold out and was very well received on the Saturday evening with many former Summer School members in the audience. 

As always, the attitude, effort and behaviour of the pupils were excellent with a terrific camaraderie amongst the group. The tutors wish to record that even at the end of a busy academic year the students made the week a pleasure to be part of and ensured that it was great fun.    



30th 8pm ‘Pilgrims’ at the Rectory


4th 10am Church decorating for Harvest, All Saints’

5th 7pm Harvest Supper, Village Hall

5th 7pm Film night at The Mill Theatre

6th 10.30am Harvest Thanksgiving Service, All Saints’ Church

8th 7.30pm W.I. Village Hall

9th 10.30am Meeting Point at Jane Smith’s, Horsefair Lane

10th 10.30am Health Walk, HOCP

12th 7 for 8pm The Fossil Lady of Lyme, Village Hall

23rd 10.30am Meeting Point at Jane Eshelby’s, Newton House, Avenue Rd., Rushden

24th 10.30am Health Walk, HOCP

26th 9.45am All Saints’ Amblers

26th 10am Fairtrade Café, Village Hall

28th 10am Conservation Tasks, HOCP

Magazine Deadline

Please send all entries for the November 2013 magazine to Tricia Hudson (ed at or Catherine Corkery by October 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.

Odell Cheese

Wodehill Cheese — hand-made in Carlton 

Wodehill Blue is a semi-soft creamy blue cheese

made with milk from Jersey cows in Carlton 

Nearest stockists:  Hurleys in Sharnbrook and Carlton Village Shop




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: September 29, 2013.