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July/August 2007

Birthday Greetings To:

Miles Tringham on 24th August

And to everyone with a birthday in July or August.

We also have two very important belated birthday wishes to send:

Edie Surridge celebrated her 90th birthday on 22nd

May – many congratulations Edie!

Edie has asked us to take this opportunity to say thank you, on her

behalf, to all friends and family who made the day so special for her.

Also, belated happy birthday wishes to Mia Vyvyan who

celebrated her 6th birthday on 2nd June.

We hope that both Edie and Mia had a wonderful time on their birthdays!

Round and About


 Please do not Rain on St. Swithin's Day

With the seemingly never-ending rain during May I found my thoughts turning repeatedly to St. Swithin and the many legends that surround his name.

In this month is St. Swithin's Day

On which, if that it rain, they say

Full forty days after it will,

Or more or less, some rain distill.

St. Swithin, it seems, is that rare thing - a home-grown saint. Sadly, however, I find that my various sources of information do not always agree on the date and so a few discrepancies may appear!

Swithin was born around the year 800 of noble parentage. He was named in the Saxon tongue as Swithum, but at some time this changed. He entered the Church at Winchester and became a monk in the old monastery where, in due course, he became Provost (or Dean). He studied grammar, philosophy and theology and, because of his great learning and virtue, came to the attention of Egbert, King of England. So impressed was he, that Egbert appointed Swithin to be his personal priest and also made him responsible for the education of his son,

Ethelwolfe. When Ethelwolfe became king he appointed Swithin to the position of Bishop of Winchester around the year 852.

Swithin introduced the system of paying Tithes to the Church, in which a tenth of all land should go to the Church.  He persuaded Ethelwolfe to enact this into the law of the land, in return for which a prayer for the king's soul would take place on every Wednesday, in all churches, forever. Ethelwolfe solemnized the grant by laying the charter on the altar at Rome.

Swithin, Bishop of Winchester, died on the 2nd. July 865 in the reign of the Danish king Ethelbert, and he was buried, according to his own wishes, under the sky in the open church yard and not in the chancel as was the custom for other bishops. A hundred years later it was written that "such a number of miraculous cures of all kinds were wrought by his relics as was never known in any other place". Also, at about this time, Swithin was canonized by the Pope, and the monks took it into their heads that it was disgraceful for the saint to lie in the open church yard and resolved to remove his body into the choir of Winchester Cathedral with all due solemn processions.

The date was set for the 15th. July but it came to pass that it rained so violently on that day, and for 40 days thereafter, as had hardly been known. The monks, therefore, set aside their plans, as they now considered them to be blasphemous as their plans went directly against the dying wishes of Saint Swithin. Instead of this they erected a chapel over his grave, whereupon miracles once again began to occur.  

His relics were, at a later date, removed into the new Cathedral of Winchester, when it was completed under the direction of William the Conqueror. The new cathedral was dedicated to the Holy Trinity under the patronage of the then Pope but later, by popular acclaim, the name of St. Swithin was added to it and so it continued until the reign of Henry VIII who ordered that the dedication be returned to that of the Holy Trinity alone and so it remains to this day.

St. Swithin's Day is the 15th. July.     

Barbara Corley



There was no meeting in June as so many W.I. members were helping with the fete.

Next meeting

Tuesday 10th July


A visit to Yelnow Farm



August meeting:

Tuesday 14th for a barbecue and bring and share buffet at Linden House, High St., Odell.

Hostess will be Doreen Wheeler.

Rachel Halton 720572

Jazz in the Garden

Come and enjoy a lazy summer evening at The Bell on Friday 24th August. The Wodehill Jazz Band will be playing in the riverside garden, weather permitting, from 6.30pm.





Senior Citizens’ Summer Garden Party

Odell Luncheon Club invites you to a strawberry tea in Jim and Doreen Wheeler’s garden:

Linden House, 93 High Street, Odell, On Wednesday 4th July at 3.00pm 

All senior citizens are invited. Please let Jill Cheadle (720261) know if you wish to come.

A Young Swallow

by Roger Jackson

A swallow young and glinting blue

Swooping low then high to view

Caught its breath in ecstasy

So happy and so glad to be.


The sunny spire of the church

On such a day no finer perch

Attracted birds from far away

Though some lived in its walls of grey.


Our swallow during one long glide

Swooped through a window small but wide

Outside the warm sun sparkled still

Inside was dim, distinctly chill.


Heading for the nearest light

The swallow crashed with all its might

Against the glass of window pane

Lay stunned, then tried again, again.


Each time no matter where it tried

The glass was closed and so it died

It clung one moment to the wall

Then dropped beside the choir stall.


Movement now was heard no more,

Warm sun patterns on the floor

Broke through the sombre silent cold

Wringing creaks from oak pews old.


Those crumpled feathers on broken wing

No longer need their perfect trim

The joy this little one had known

Has with its life forever flown.

Odell Parish Council News

Annual General Meeting of Odell Parish Council was held on Monday, 21st May 2007 at 8.00 p.m. in Odell Village Hall.

Election of Chairman
Mrs. R. Halton was nominated to stand again as Chairman by Cllr A. Sharpe; this was seconded by Mr. P. Crotty and unanimously agreed.

Cllr. Halton agreed to continue and signed the Declaration of Acceptance of Office.

Election of Vice Chairman
Cllr. A Sharpe was nominated, seconded and the nomination agreed by all.

Matters Arising:
Cllr. Gershon spoke at this point as she had to leave the meeting shortly. She informed the meeting that the proposed gravel extraction between Radwell and Milton Ernest has now been withdrawn.
Cllr. Halton asked about the Community Safety Fund money that is supposedly available and of which Odell should receive about £3,500. Cllr. Gershon will follow this up with Simon White.
Cllr. Gershon asked if the Parish Council wished to continue with the Community Liaison Forum which would now be run by the relevant County Councillors but at present without the funding element. The venue would be Carlton as there was more room for parking there. Cllrs. Halton and Cheadle, who had been the Parish Council’s representatives on this Forum felt it would be useful to continue.
Odell Bridges:

A follow up by the Clerk on the current situation produced a disappointing response from the County Council [Chris Nicol] to the effect that the promised money for the Rights of Way capital bridge programme has been withdrawn after the first year.
Although the precarious state of the bridges is known, they can only continue to monitor the bridges with every heavy rainfall and should it be decided they are too unsafe to use, the only option will be to close them. They are appealing to those with the purse strings on Health and Safety grounds and will keep the Parish Council informed.

Village Hall Sign:

The proposal by Cllr. Cheadle to acquire a sign to be fixed on the wall instead of one on posts was considered; the ownership of the wall was questioned and this will be discussed with Martin Bridgman, who is thought to be the owner of the wall.

Borough Council matters:
Planning issues: Planning application by owners of the Mad Dog for a new entrance was tabled and discussed. No objections to this application.
Planning permission granted for the land adjacent to Northend Farm for erection of a stable block and hard standing area.
Notification of notice of Appeal in respect of the Lodge, High Street. Councillors decided to take no additional action on this and let the Appeal process take its course.

County Council matters:
Letter from County Council re their unitary status bid. Details of this can be found on their Web site [].

Comments have to be made to the Unitary Structures Consultation Team and information on this can be found on their Website [] and following the ‘consultations’ link at the top left of the page.
Highways: Cllr. Crotty has spoken to Celia Sellars again regarding the footpath problem and has been assured it is in the programme and the work should be started in July. Cllr. Halton asked if Highways could make sure they included the stretch from the Little Odell turn into the village also.

Country Park:
Cllr. Halton said there is a Country Park meeting on Wednesday  this week. Various issues are up for discussion including the proposed skate park, a possible decking area and children’s play area. They have been advised they are eligible for the Heritage Lottery fund but any application must be heritage focused. Various people are expressing interest in doing sculptures for the park including a design that will degrade over time and one using willow. There is to be a celebration event on Saturday, 30th June that people from the villages can walk to.

This will be publicised locally. They are also trying to put together a consortium for the fishing rights as no single organisation appears interested. A new Notice Board at the Odell end of the park is still on the agenda.

The cumulative accounts were circulated. The Annual Accounts had been previously circulated and were approved. The Statement of Accounts including the Annual Governance Statement for audit was duly signed.

Correspondence and Requests:
The proposed Trust status of Pinchmill School was noted; this is apparently going ahead.
DSD have asked to be advised of the position of all litter bins.
The Clerk informed Councillors that the new Code of Conduct will need to be adopted shortly Letter from Alistair Burt regarding ambulance services and some  concerns expressed about the response time to reaching villages. He is looking for an update and any change/improvement or if problems are still there.

Specifically for the Business of the meeting:
Parish Plan: The Chairman stated there appears to be no interest in this so it will not be pursued. However, Cllr. Crotty had suggested a suitable compromise could be a questionnaire to all parishioners on the lines of the initial one used in Parish Plans. This could specifically target local issues such as people’s perception of the Parish Council and how it operates, any particular projects they would like to see implemented etc.

Cllr. Halton offered to look at producing a provisional questionnaire which would be circulated to all councillors for comments, additions or amendments. This proposal was received favourably by councillors who felt it more appropriate to the local community than a full Parish Plan.

The new seat has been installed and looks very attractive.

Councillors expressed their thanks to Martin Bridgman and Chris Swift for undertaking this installation in their own time and at no cost.

The Chairman expressed her thanks to the Clerk for the amount of time and effort spent on the acquisition of the Village Hall. In recognition of this she said all councillors approved a ‘gift’ of £200; the acknowledgment and the gift were very gratefully received by the Clerk!

The Chairman stated that Mr. Dunn had initially misunderstood where his new boundary line was to be and had arranged the dismantling of the slide and a swing frame and flattening of some of the ground. In addition he had also strimmed the grass as this was getting out of control. In recognition of this and as some small recompense, the Chairman proposed giving Mr. Dunn a small donation of, say, £40 towards his costs. This was approved by all councillors.
Cllr. Harrison said he had received a call from Mr. Chamberlain about the recent meeting regarding the proposed quarry. Cllr. Harrison told him it had been organised by the residents of The Mill and that everyone in attendance had been encouraged to write in individually.

Mr. Chamberlain said he has asked his own architect to carry out soil sampling in the Carlton to Felmersham bridges proposal.

Cllr. Sharpe asked the present position regarding the ‘No Cold Calling’ zone. The Parish Council had rejected the large signs but the Council now appears to be using much smaller signs which are felt to be acceptable and more appropriate. Cllr. Sharpe cited a recent incident of ‘cold callers’ in the village and there was some discussion on what callers/organisations fall into this category. The Clerk was asked to obtain some more leaflets and enquire about the smaller signs.

Cllr. Cheadle said that some years ago he had started a Home Watch scheme; although his personal interest in this finished some time ago he still received paperwork and had the contacts relating to this. He asked if anyone would be interested in taking this on. Cllr. Crotty agreed to have a look at what is entailed.
Cllr. Cheadle commented on the current amount of flyposting that is appearing, and that the County Council seems to be a prime instigator of much of it; once posted, they do not bother to remove them when they are out of date. At one time when companies put these up, it was usual for anyone spotting one to tear it down and perhaps this should be done again.

The next meeting will be on Monday, 16th July.

Help Needed

From time to time the elderly and infirm in the village need help with transport to Harrold or Sharnbrook surgery for appointments or to collect medication.

So far, the following people have volunteered to help:

Kim Beardow 721246

Jill Cheadle 720261

Jonathan Harrison 721115

Linda and George Tringham 720120

Marion Ingrey-Senn 721176

If you think you can also help with this occasionally, please let Jill Cheadle know (720261) as it would be useful to draw up a list of names and numbers which could be called upon when necessary. All help would be very much appreciated.

Harrold-Odell Country Park

Carlton Road, Harrold, Bedford MK43 7DS

Spoons and Spatulas

Sunday 8th July 2 – 4pm

Learn some of the tricks of the trade to make your own kitchen spatulas and spoons. Find out which wood is the best for this and have a go at some of the tools including a shave horse, pole lathe, spoon gouge and curved knife!

Moth Identification

Saturday 25th August 8pm - late

Learn to identify the many species of moth living in the Park at this time of year with a practical hands-on session.

Friends of Harrold-Odell Country Park Conservation tasks 2007

Come and join in with practical work to enhance the park for wildlife and visitors on the following dates:

Monday 30 July, Monday 20 August

All tasks start at 10am and finish mid afternoon, but you only need stay as long as you want.

Group Visits

If you would like to bring a group of children to the Park, an event can be organised for them. Adult groups also welcome. Contact us for further details.

Tel: 01234 720016/Email:

Bell Occasional Golf Society

David Johns won the second outing of the Bell Occasional Golf Society (BOGS). Twelve players took part in the event which took place on

Friday 25th May at ‘The Bedford’, Great Denham.

The Bedford Morris Men will be dancing and entertaining with music and songs at The Bell on 18th July beginning at 8.00pm.

Village Hall News


There are no village events coming up in July or

August, but look out in next month’s magazine for some exciting autumn events.

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.

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.

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

The Mill Theatre, Sharnbrook Reg. Charity No 242164

Suddenly at Home by Francis Durbridge – Master of the unexpected

Tuesday 25t h - Saturday 29t h September

Sexy, passionate ….full of twist and turns … the classic thriller!

Not to be missed! Not suitable for children

Tickets available from Monday 20th August

from Sharnbrook Post Office (in person) or

Bedford Central Box Office, 269519 (*credit/ debit cards accepted).

Parties: 10% Discount for 10 or more (excluding Charity Gala or Revue Performances).

Disabled Access: Lift, 2 Wheelchair spaces, easy access seating (3 steps). Please book early!*

IT Training from Beds. Rural Communities Charity

Computer courses for all ages and levels of knowledge.· We come to your village and you learn in a relaxed environment where you can learn about Word Processing, Spreadsheets, Databases and much more.If you have never touched a computer we also have a course for you.Give us a ring on 01234 832648. If you get an answer machine leave your name and number and I will get back to you.   

Mike Dewar, E-mobile Co-ordinator, BRCC



Wed 4th 3pm Senior Citizens’ Garden party, Linden House.

Sun 8th 2-4pm Making kitchen tools, HOCP.

Tues 10th 7.30pm W.I. trip to Yelnow Farm.

Wed 11th 10.30am Meeting Point at the Rectory.

Mon 16th 8.00pm Parish Council Meeting, Village Hall.

Wed 18th 8.00pm Bedford Morris Men at The Bell

Mon 30th 10am HOCP Conservation tasks.


Sun 5th 6-8pm All Saints’ open for prayer.

Tues 7th 3-5pm All Saints’ open for prayer.

Wed 8th 6-8pm All Saints’ open for prayer.

Thurs 9th 3-5pm All Saints’ open for prayer.

Tues 14th 7.30pm W.I. barbecue Linden House.

Fri 24th 6.30pm Wodehill Jazz Band at The Bell.

Mon 20th 10am HOCP conservation tasks.

Sat 25th 8pm –late Moth identification HOCP.

Magazine Deadline

Please send all entries for the September 2007 magazine to Tricia

Hudson (mag1 @ or Catherine Corkery by August 12th 2007 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.


Great local pubs

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Last revised: June 30, 2007.