Back to the Odell Home Page


 September 2013

Be sure to attend the Coffee Morning in the Village Hall 

Saturday September 14th:  10am -12 noon

 to discuss its future - everyone welcome

Above: Morris Men entertaining outside the Bell at the end of July

Come and see their new menus this month

‘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

  Happy Birthday to

Christy Vyvyan – who will be 14 on 13th ,

Sarah Jane Holden-Postles , 10 on 19th

and Daniel Bridgman whose birthday is on 25th  

...And to everyone with a birthday in September!

 Round and About 

 Lavender Fields 

On a warm, sunny evening in July, in that part of the month when the sun always seemed to be shining, the Odell Womens Institute went on their annual summer outing.  Last year we took a trip down the Grand Union Canal on a narrow boat, taking in the Blisworth Tunnel.  This year we had a complete change and visited the Hitchin Lavender Fields at Caldwell Farm Ickleford. 

The  Horsefair Lane contingent, we travelled in small groups by car,  were  - I fear – the last to arrive,  to find that the tour of the fields was about to depart.  The lavender fields are in a beautiful setting of gently rolling countryside, providing magnificent views,  with manicured areas providing seats and benches for those who wished to sit and absorb the serenity of the scene. 

Our first stop was at a site that I would describe as a nursery area.  Here were the young plants (about two years old)  which were displayed in different varieties with varying colours, scent and growing habits.  A short walk brought us to the main growing area where a misty, purple haze fell away  down a gentle hillside.  Some of the lavender was in full bloom,  others had already been harvested, but the vast majority was still to bloom, but was full of promise for the yet to come. 

There are over 12 acres of lavender grown in extensive rows and in dozens of varieties.  This is not a commercial lavender farm as such, although they do harvest and produce the lavender oil.  The farm’s prime purpose is to grow and display as many varieties of lavender as can be persuaded to grow in our climate and to cross a flowering season from June to early autumn.  Most of their lavender is propagated on the farm and,  when harvested,  dried, and sent to Norfolk for distillation.  The oils are then returned and utilised in the many products and toiletries on display in their gift shop. 

Unlike many places that I have visited, we were positively encouraged to walk among the rows of flowering bushes and to pick and sample as we moved amongst the waist-high plants.   It was here that we were shown how to take cuttings.   We were surrounded by bees, humming and bumbling amongst the lavender.  There were so many bees moving like a haze amongst the blooming shrubs it was difficult to realise that they were all bumble bees.   We were advised by our guide that there were not as many bees as usual due to the absence of any honey bees.  This had come about due to the fact that about a week earlier the honey bees had mass-swarmed and that the farm buildings had been covered in thousands of swarming bees, to such a degree that they had created a hazard to the farm’s visitors.  They had had to call in the experts to capture the bees and to re-locate them  to another site, leaving the lavender fields as the sole domain of the bumble bee.  It was anticipated, however, that in a matter of a few weeks the honey bees would return and re-instate their dominance of the area.     

In 2012 the Lavender Farm was invited to provide an official floral display featuring their many varieties of lavender to be presented to Her Majesty The Queen on the occasion of her Diamond Jubilee. 

We concluded our visit in the traditional spirit of the Odell W.I.  We descended on the cafe and made short work of tea and a variety of cream cakes.  Barbara Corley  

W.I. News


In July members and friends enjoyed an evening visit to the Lavender Field near Hitchin in warm sunny weather.  With over 12 acres of rows and dozens of varieties, the fields are a haven for wildlife such as skylarks, swallows, butterflies and bees.  We were encouraged to walk through the miles of lavender rows and pick our own fresh lavender to take home with us. We saw lavender with wonderful names such as Fragrant Memories, Edelweiss, Twinkle Purple and Princess Blue.  The 17th Century barn used to store dried lavender also houses the gift shop and small restaurant where members enjoyed light refreshments before returning home.

The August meeting took the form of an indoor BBQ at the home of Jim and Doreen Wheeler.  A great social occasion to get together for fun and friendship. Thank you to Jim and Doreen for hosting the occasion.  Members enjoyed drinks in the garden before a delicious bring and share meal.

Our next meeting will be in the Village Hall on Tuesday 10th September at 7.30 pm  when Nikki Freeman will tell us about volunteering at the Olympic Games last year.

Hostesses are Barbara Corley and Jenny Cuddeford

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 Bedfordshire Federation website,uk/bedfordshire

Jane Eshelby


Alison Foster, Borough Councillor

Update for Odell – August/September 2013 

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 in 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. 

Please note that the consultation closes on October 1st so surveys need to be completed before then. 

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 deadline for the receipt of tender documents has now passed and following an evaluation the contract signing with the chosen provider is scheduled for the 29th August.  A planning and mobilisation stage will then begin during the remainder of this year and the contract will be delivered between 2014 and 2016. 

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.

Budget Proposals

The Council is currently consulting on a number of budget proposals totalling just over £17m which can be viewed here;  The consultation will end on the 30th September.

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. 

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 

Antiques & Collectors’ Items Valuation Day

Saturday 21st September, Commencing 10am – 4pm 

Councillor Alison Foster invites you to a charity valuation day in aid of

Keech Hospice Care 

To be held at

The Harrold Centre, High Street, Harrold, Bedfordshire, MK43 7BH

With David Fletcher of W&H Peacock’s, an expert on the BBC’s popular programme ‘Flog It!’


Bring along items for auction advice without obligation. David can advise on antique &

collectable items and jewellery. A donation of £2.00 per item to the Keech Hospice Charity

Refreshments available

In Association with


HOCP Carver Bids Farewell 

Sadly my time at HOCP is coming to an end and I must leave by mid December later this year.

It has been a wonderful 5 years of carving at the Park and I can honestly say that there has rarely been a day I have worked there that someone hasn’t stopped by to say how much they like my work. So a big thank you to all the Park visitors who have wished me well over the years as you now number in your hundreds – possibly thousands!  

Many of you have photos of your children sitting on my benches, standing on the tortoise, stroking the dog or curling up on the acorn and oak leaf. I am honoured that my sculptures have that place in your memories. I will miss you all very much. I haven’t as yet established another carving spot but I would like you all to still be able to reach me through my website. I will be writing a ‘carving blog’ there later in the year to talk about my time at the Park and how I’m getting on in 2014. Website details below. 

Finally I ask your help with the sad matter of thefts from the Park of my work. Small things disappeared such as mushrooms, an old man of the woods, some bears in a log, a frog on a log as well as a huge round slab of cedar I had earmarked for a giant ammonite, over a period of the past year. However the most frustrating loss was the theft of one half of my Bears Bench. The right hand side shown in the picture of one sitting bear and another ‘bear behind’ has also been taken. It has a distinctive insert cut into the top where the bench fits. Unfortunately I can’t now sell this bench until I can source the redwood to replace the stolen bears. If anyone has any information on their whereabouts please get in touch. 

So thank you once again for all your support. I have been away re-furbishing a house for the past few months but I will be back at the end of August to fulfil any outstanding commissions before Christmas. I hope to hear from some of you:

07962 669899

News from Harrold Odell Country Park 

With enormous sadness I have to report that Trevor Smith, our Volunteer-in-Chief, wood chopper extraordinaire, fishing bailiff and all points in between passed away on  Saturday August 10th after a short illness.  He was at the park almost every day over the past 7 years selling and checking fishing permits, chopping wood and generally taking care of his beloved park. 

What are we are going to do without him - he was unique in every way and the term “sorely missed” is a huge understatement. His family in Wisbech decided that everything he cared for was here and therefore his funeral should be in Bedford with his ashes returned to the park at the appropriate time. 

There will of course be a memorial in his honour.  His family have asked that an oak tree be planted and we will fly our Green Flag at half mast   He was after all instrumental in helping us achieve this award and was mentioned in the judge’s summary.  Trevor you were a great Friend both to the park and to me personally. 

It’s not easy to write more after that but of course there are things happening in the park all the time.  Together with Harrold Parish Council and Harrold Youth, we have arranged for a youth shelter to be erected adjacent to the skate park.  This was something that arose from consultation with local young people and they chose the final location after research on the location of archaeological remains was undertaken. 

When the site was first quarried it was discovered that there was a Romano British farmstead located where the southern part of the lake is now.  There were also earthworks detected under the picnic site and into the roadside woodland.  Excavations revealed extremely well preserved burials, ceramics and the detritus from everyday living.  There was also a wicker lined well still preserved in the waterlogged ground!  It just goes to show that there have been people associated with the park for thousands of years and, just like today’s park Rangers – using willow to make fences, baskets and whatever else they needed! 

As briefly mentioned already, we have won another Green Flag for excellent green space for the 6th year in a row and the flag raising took place on Monday Aug. 19th.  Our wonderful Friends Group volunteers are instrumental in helping to get this award again.  We cannot thank them enough. 

It has been heart-warming to see many more butterflies and dragonflies in the park this year.  The foul weather last summer definitely had a detrimental effect on many things.  Birds’ nests were flooded out, bees suffered from lack of heat and feeding opportunities and our work programmes were ruined because we couldn’t get in the nature reserve due to continuous flooding.  If anything, it’s been too hot to work some days this year – we’re never satisfied are we? 

I wonder if we’ll get an Indian summer?  It looks like we’re going to get a bumper crop of fruits of the forest.  Soft fruits across the board have seen tremendous harvests this year.  I’m looking forward to making crab apple jelly, blackberry & apple jam, crumble and sloe gin (yum – a favourite Xmas tipple of mine).  I was given a bottle of elderflower cordial made from park flowers recently.  Thank you Julie – what a treat!


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

September 12th & 26th

October 10th & 24th

November 7th & 21st

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.) 

September 30th, October 28th & November 25th Janet Munro, Ranger

News from The Bell

Starting again in September:  Steak Nights – Tuesdays and Thursday.  Special offer on steaks + wine.    

Come and see our new menu – still with the favourites but some exciting new dishes added.

Village Hall 

Were you aware that the Village Hall is purely funded from events and users? Are you aware of the disappointing attendance at recent Village Hall events? Were you aware of the events? 

We invite you to a coffee morning on Saturday 14 September 2013 at 10.00-12.00 to discuss the future of the Village Hall and what can be done to support it. Any ideas of events you would like to see would be appreciated. 

We look forward to seeing you. 

Don’t forget our forthcoming events:

Village Hall Quiz-21 September 2013

‘The Fossil Lady of Lyme’ Theatre -12 October 2013

MELVIS-16 November 2013

The Mill Theatre, Sharnbrook

Reg. Charity No 242164

Season 2012 

Glorious - Tuesday 17th – Saturday 21st September at 7.30 pm 

Peter Quilter’s ‘gloriously’ funny, heart-warming comedy – the true story of Florence Foster Jenkins,  an American operatic soprano of considerable passion and wealth, known and ridiculed for her lack of rhythm, pitch and tone – following her extraordinary career via charity recitals and recording sessions… to an ‘ultimate triumph’ at Carnegie Hall! 

The glory (????) of the human voice’  

Tickets on sale from 13th August at:

Sharnbrook Post Office (in person) or

Bedford Central Box Office* 01234 718112 -  now at Bedford Tourist Information Centre in St Paul’s Sq. (NB new phone number)

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

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

Events in aid of Sharnbrook Mill Theatre 70th Anniversary appeal for a Green Energy based heating and ventilation system.Super sweets

Rock at The Mill  with The Whybirds

Saturday 28th September  8pm       £10 (unreserved seating)

Tickets from Roger Wiltshire 07704 700785 or Sharnbrook Post Office (in person).  

Sharnbrook Mill Theatre Trust invite you to their           

70th Anniversary  Warm Up Ball!

Saturday 26th October 2013,, 6.30pm for 7pm, carriages at 12.30am.

The Amalfi Suite at The Sharnbrook Hotel

Black Tie         Live band: Frisco and a Disco!

Tickets £42 each to include three course meal and drink on arrival

Please apply to 




7th 7.30pm Cantamus perform at St. Mary’s Church, Carlton

8th 11am Festival Eucharist, St Mary’s, Carlton

8th 2-4pm Tea, cakes and Tower open, St. Mary’s, Carlton

10th 7.30pm W.I., Village Hall

11th 10.30am Meeting Point at Eileen Nottage’s, Heydown, High Street

12th 10.30am Health Walk, HOCP

14th 10am Coffee Morning Village Hall to discuss its future

21st 10am-4pm Charity Antique Valuation Day, Harrold Centre

21st 7.30pm Quiz, Village Hall

25th 10.30am Meeting Point at Catherine’s, Manor Cottage, Harrold

26th 10.30am Health Walk, HOCP

30th 10am Conservation Tasks Day, HOCP


5th 10am Decorate Church for Harvest

5th 7pm Harvest Supper, Village Hall

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

Magazine Deadline

Please send all entries for the October 2013 magazine to Tricia Hudson (edat or Catherine Corkery by September 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  

Wodehill Cheese — hand-made in Odell  

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


Back to the Odell Home Page

Last revised: September 02, 2013.