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February 2006

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Birthdays in February

Happy birthday to:

Jack Holden Postles who will be 5 on the 10th

Victoria Beardow who will be 10 on the 22nd

And to Anne Turner on the 24th!

Round and About

What is an Icon?

There I was, wondering what to choose as a theme for my first article to kick start the new season, when, surprise, surprise, the Government presented me with the perfect subject!

The National Icons of England (as against Scotland, Wales and N. Ireland - apparently they are seen to have enough already!) The Government has opened a website with a list of 12 suggestions put forward by the Department of Culture, Media and Sport, and an odd assortment it is too. They now ask for the general public to log on and suggest their own favourites. I couldn't resist it - I found myself considering which 12 subjects would head my list and I found it did not tally that closely to the Think Tank selection.

Where, for example is the National flag? - surely the epitome of any country. Where is "The Last Night at the Proms" - what could be more English? I can accept some of the suggestions but others just leave me cold!

 Of course, much of this must depend upon whether you come from the north of the country or the south. It has to be a very personal list and will vary from one to another. I invite you to join me in composing your own personal list. I am quite sure it will vary considerably from mine, and also from the "official list".

I have approached the subject from the point of view of that lovely poem "Home thoughts from Abroad". When thinking of England from a foreign land, what thoughts spring to mind....

Well, of course, the flag of England, and The Last Night at the Proms in full cry - and lets keep it English. The remainder of the Proms provides many opportunities for music from overseas. What else? The sea crashing ashore on a rocky coastline...I think the sea is in the veins of most English people. Drifting down a tree lined river in an open boat - and the sun is shining, of course. I think the last two come from childhood memories!

A typical English country garden, with lawns and roses and birds singing; a cup of tea - the panacea of all things English whether happy or sad - from out of the sidelines a voice always utters the immortal phrase "Let's have a cuppa tea". Stonehenge, with a swathe of rolling countryside; a pure chocolate box country village with cottages round a village green with a game of cricket in progress; a group of people pony trekking along an open moorland track.

In case you think I am stuck in a rustic idyll I now turn to The Tower of London, Big Ben and then, right up-to-date with the London Eye - so warmly taken to the hearts of the English people- these last three recognizable to everyone worldwide.

There you have it, my top 12. I could think of many more, like any one of our Gothic cathedrals, a red phone box, a red double decker London bus, a black taxicab or even walking in the rain. Here are my 12 and a very personal

selection they are too. If you feel I am too patriotic just

Remember, the Government called for "English" icons.   Barbara Corley

For your interest, here is the list of 12 British icons drawn up by the Government:

Stonehenge, Punch and Judy, SS Empire Windrush, Holbein’s painting of Henry Vlll, a Cup of Tea, FA Cup, Alice in Wonderland, Routemaster double decker bus, King James Bible, the Angel of the North, Spitfire and ‘Jerusalem’.


December saw us celebrate Christmas with a bring and share meal at the home of Rachel Halton. After a very enjoyable meal members had to use their brains to do a short quiz – they where asked to identify well known carols by the first line of the second verse. No one managed a full house but congratulations to Kathy Dunn for getting the most.

We resumed our meeting in the Village Hall in January. After a

discussion about whether members want the W.I. to continue - a

decision will be made next month - we looked at some old fashioned toys and games that members had brought along and tried our hand at some of them.

February meeting

We are pleased to welcome Laurence Jones to our meeting on February 14th at 7.30 p.m. in the Village Hall. His talk is entitled ‘Travels with my camera’. Visitors are always welcome. Just turn up or contact any W.I. member.

Competition and Hostesses

Hostesses are Rachel Halton and Jill Cheadle and the competition is ‘a photo of your travels’.

Rachel Halton 720572

Senior Citizens Fish and Chip Lunch.

The annual Senior Citizens Fish and Chip lunch will take place on Wednesday 15th March at 12.30pm for 1.00pm, in the Village Hall.

Please let Jill Cheadle know by the 5th March if you wish to join us. (01234 720261).

Mobile Library

The Mobile Library now visits us EVERY Friday for 15 minutes from 13.45 - 14.00 hrs by the flats.

Thus, a longer fortnightly visit is being replaced by a shorter but more frequent weekly visit.

Odell Parish Council

A meeting of Odell Parish Council was held on Monday, 16th January 2006 at 8.00 p.m. in Odell Village Hall

Present: Cllr. R Halton (in the Chair), Cllrs. B Cheadle, J Gemmel, A Sharpe.

County Councillor Mrs P Gershon

Borough Councillor M Bridgman

In attendance: P.C. R Smith

PC Smith was welcomed to the meeting and presented his report for the period 1st April 2005 to 15th January 2006. During this period a total of 9 crimes were reported – all burglary/theft related.
PC Smith stated that currently the Bedford Rural Policing Team only has 2 Police Community Support Officers to cover some 30+ villages. The number of PCSOs is due to be increased – hopefully up to 15. PC Smith was unaware that the mobile vehicle used to visit Odell, but it was clear from discussion that a visible presence in the form of a Police Vehicle parked in the centre of the village was preferred, with the driver walking round the village. PC Smith said he would be happy to do this, and will look at convenient dates and times.

Matters Arising:
a) Old School Bell: The Clerk stated that the new bell has now been
cast and Mr Wherrett was informing the manufacturers of the dimensions of the fixing brackets.

b) Grasscutting: Chris Horne had added a very small percentage to each figure – from £70 to £72 for the fortnightly cuts and from £165 to £170 for the monthly cuts – and this was not considered unreasonable.

c) Yelnow Lane: Response from the County Council in reply to our request for possible reclassification was circulated. The County Council is endeavouring to do whatever they can to keep the Lane in a reasonable condition, but does not appear to be able or willing to consider reclassification at this moment in time.

d) Seat, Horsefair Lane: Cllr. Halton has the plaque to be placed on this seat and Cllr. Cheadle offered to put it in place.

Borough Council Matters
The Clerk had no items to raise. Cllr. Bridgman stated that the Podington Wind Farm is still in planning, and the Planning Officer is organising some visits to similar wind farms before the Committee makes its decision.

Cllr Cheadle asked if the Church could submit an application to the Borough Council under the Rural Grants scheme for the proposed improvements to car parking outside the Church gates.

County Council Matters
Cllr. Cheadle provided the requested information regarding the numbers and locations of street lights for the County Council’s Highways Department.
The Gully Cleansing vehicle will visit Odell "within the next few weeks" and householders are asked not to park over gullies during that period.

A Public Hearing to determine the Public Path Diversion Order relating to part of Bridleway No. 33 is planned for sometime in the middle of May. The actual date is dependent on a suitable venue and it is hoped this will be Odell Village Hall. Cllr. Cheadle has provisionally agreed to attend, depending on his commitments at that time.
The annual Town and Parish Council Reception has been reorganised for 7.00 p.m. on the 7th March in the Council Suite, County Hall.

Planning Matters
Permissions received: 16 Horsefair Lane – single storey front and rear extension and replacement garage.
75 High Street – Erection of conservatory on rear elevation.
Notification of an Appeal by Mr K J Smith, 10 Tannery Lane – no Hearing

date set.
Country Park
Cllr. Halton said that nothing further appears to have happened since the last report. The problem with parking at the bottom of Horsefair Lane was again raised and Cllr. Halton will contact Lindsey Bignell for the views of the Country Park.

The Clerk reported that the Annual Accounts had finally been received back from the auditors.

Correspondence and requests
Letter from the Headmaster of Sharnbrook School circulated and discussed. This was basically asking for funding for extra classes/teachers/transport but it was felt that in general the letter was very unclear and unhelpful, and it was felt that the requested finance should be generated by those who were benefiting from the facilities.

The Association of Town and Parish Councils are running workshops to help Parish Councils understand the requirements, usefulness and benefits of Quality Status.

Specifically for the Business of the Meeting
Cllr. Sharpe reported on her visit to the Disabled Access Forum. She felt the workshops had been planned so that participants would acquiesce, but in fact there were some vociferous outbursts that clearly had not been expected. It was not as well attended as would have been expected, with some notable groups being absent. The comment from most people at the forum was that there should be one single telephone point where any information can be acquired
Cllr. Cheadle referred to the tree pollarding in the Churchyard; this incurred a final cost of £1600 from an initial quote of between £1100 and £1400. It was generally agreed that the pollarding was a great improvement and long overdue, and in response to Cllr. Cheadle’s request for some Parish Council funding towards the cost, Councillors agreed and approved the sum of £400. This was added to the invoices to be paid from this meeting.

Date of next meeting: Monday, 13th March 2006

Stations North of Bedford

Would you like to see railway stations reopened between Bedford and Wellingborough, e.g at Sharnbrook, Oakley or Souldrop?

Come to a public meeting at Sharnbrook Village Hall, Lodge Road at

7.30 pm on Tuesday 28th February 2006 and have your say!

Guest Speakers: Peter Allen on the Kings Cross/St Pancras Development and Richard Pill (Chairman of Beds. Railway & Transport Association) on the Stations North of Bedford project proposal, giving an update on the current thinking.

All welcome, light refreshments and sales stall available.

For further information on the event, contact Richard Pill on 01234 405268 or

Harrold-Odell Country Park

Otters in Harrold and around Bedfordshire - the current situation and how to identify their presence. A talk and slide show on Bedfordshire otters followed by practical training in recognising their signs around Harrold-Odell Country Park. Warm clothing and strong footwear required. Please book early to reserve a place.

Saturday March 11th. 10am – 1pm

There is no charge for this event but if you make a donation it will help us to put on further events.

Friends of the Park Conservation Tasks

Why not join in with some practical work to enhance the Park both for wildlife and visitors? You can get fit and enjoy yourself at the same time! The next sessions are on Monday 27th February and Monday 27th March. All tasks start at 10am and last until around mid afternoon but you can go when you want to. Please wear practical clothing and footwear.

Tel: 01234 720016


Village Hall News


If you have an idea or can help with these let us know, and if you would like a venue for a private function, the very reasonable hire fee helps us maintain the hall.

Christmas Party - 20th December. Thanks to everyone who helped and turned up for the Christmas Party. Our Magician kept the children spellbound for an hour with an array of tricks, many of which were antiques!! Goodies were eaten and children ready for home and for Santa visiting a few days later!!

We have just been informed that our premises licence has been approved. The law has changed and the process made unfortunately more bureaucratic and cumbersome now that it is the council’s responsibility. They do not seem to appreciate the role of the voluntary sector expecting us to conform to the same rules as big business! Perhaps in time they will learn!

Burns Night Celebration January 21st

The Annual Burns Night celebration took place in the Village Hall on Saturday, 21st January and was, as ever, very well attended. Martin Cameron piped in the haggis and gave a stirring rendition of Burns’ ‘To a Haggis,’ which put us all in the right frame of mind for feasting and merriment!

Burns Night continued: The warm and tasty meal – washed down with a nip of whisky – was followed by several hours of Scottish dancing. Robbie Burns would no doubt turn in his grave if he could have seen the tangle of bodies as we strove to dance figures of eight and ‘strip the willow’, but most of those taking part wore themselves out from laughing as much as from the dancing, and we went home feeling we had celebrated the memory of the Scottish bard in true style! Many thanks to Leslie Knowles who masterminded the event, to Martin and to Keith Rose, the caller, and to all who helped prepare and serve the food and made the evening happen.


We are looking forward to 2006 in the Village Hall.

Just to remind you:

Wednesdays - Line Dancing, Thursdays - Yoga

We are hoping for some other activities to be arranged, so more news as they are confirmed.

In April (8th to be confirmed) we are hoping to have a Barn Dance by special request!!

May 6th - Return of the Quiz!

Waste Paper Collection - Thank you for bringing your waste paper to the bins. Though the return is small, every little bit helps financially and of course the waste is recycled.

Do please support our events, and do suggest to us your ideas for alternative activities.

Rob Lee (720730) on behalf of the Village Hall Committee.


The Mill Theatre, Sharnbrook


Humble Boy: 7 – 11 March, 7.45pm.

Comedy by Charlotte Jones.

Felix Humble returns home for the funeral of his bee-keeping father. He’s a fellow in theoretical physics, ‘though he’s having trouble sorting the maths out. An overbearing mother, and abandoned ex, ‘Humble Boy’ is a comedic take on ‘Hamlet’, with laughs, clever turns and poignancy.

Tickets available from Mon. 30th January.

Advance booking will be available during ‘Humble Boy’, only at the Theatre, for:

Return to the Forbidden Planet Science Fiction Cult Rock Musical by Bob Carlton, 12 – 20 May, nightly at 7.45pm.

9 – 18? Youth Theatre Summer School 2006 Monday 24th July – Saturday 29th July. For details and to reserve your place for 6 days of professional tuition contact Erica Lester, 781210, or


· Sharnbrook Post Office – in person – Your local booking point.

· Bedford Central Box Office # 01234 269519 (Credit/Debit Cards accepted)

· Party bookings (01234) 781372 (10+? 10% discount, excl. Charity/Gala performances)

Access for the disabled: new Foyer to first floor Lift – easy access via Clubroom – Bar – covered river view balcony to 2 wheelchair positions - (please book at Bedford Box Office), also to Rows A, B and C – NB 3 steps.



8th 10.30am Meeting Point at Eileen’s, Corner House,

Wymington Park, Rushden.

14th 7.30pm W.I. Village Hall.

22nd 10.30am Meeting Point at Jill’s, Rectory Farm, Odell.

27th 10.00am Friends of Harrold/Odell Country Park

Conservation morning.

28th 7.30pm Stations of N. Bedford public meeting,

Sharnbrook Village Hall.


8th 10.30am Meeting Point at Doris’s, The Bury, Pavenham.

13th 8.00pm Parish Council Meeting, Village Hall.

15th 12.30pm Senior Citizens Fish and Chip lunch, Village Hall.

20th 7.30pm Licensing Service for Rev. Christine Clark, All Saints’.

22nd 10.30am Meeting Point at Catherine’s, Manor Cottage, Harrold.

27th 10.00am Friends of Harrold/Odell Country Park

Conservation morning.

Local pub news

Please do support the Bell - Rachel and Peter have made it particularly cosy this winter (redecorated at the time of going to press) and are always please to welcome locals and visitors alike. Call 01234 720254 for bookings



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Last revised: September 08, 2019.