Bride Valley News

February 2000


Church Service Times
From The Clergy
Main BVN menu Church Calender - This month
Valley Notes
Burton Bradstock
Puncknowle & West Bexington
Litton Cheney
Long Bredy
Shipton Gorge
Millennium Quiz
Axe Valley Ring and Ride Scheme
Diary of Events for all Parishes - This month

St Mary's Burton Bradstock FROM THE CLERGYSt Mary's Litton Cheney

"There is no such thing as a free lunch".

Some of you may realise that I've used this contemporary expression before, and it may just need a little explanation before I tell you why I'm using it again.

Most of us receive offers of free gifts through the post, and as long as we respond by the required date, something can apparently be ours for nothing. It may be a holiday abroad (as long as we fund the return travel), or a new telly (as long as we attend a presentation), or even a genuine prize (but we will still receive advertising blurb). When we were young we were warned not to accept gifts from strangers, and now that we are older we look for the "catch" when we are unexpectedly offered a "free lunch". To give to somebody almost always requires a purpose or motive, whether that purpose is to honour an anniversary or celebrate a success, or the motive to help seal a deal. The "lunch" is never really free if the motive for it is in any way persuasive; the implication being that every generous gift requires a similar response.

So where's the catch with the free gift of a silver-coloured booklet entitled "Jesus Christ" (a copy of St. Luke's Gospel) which many Bride Valley householders have received at this beginning of the Third Millennium Anno Domini, effectively of Christendom? (For various reasons, the villages at the east end of the valley are not receiving their Gospels until February. I believe however that this is a good time to have them, for they arrive distanced from millennial merriment and party paraphernalia, and so are less likely to be overlooked or ignored).

Well, there is no catch! Each Gospel really is a "free lunch", nothing needs to be done with it, except it is as-it-were a "lunch", and it might be worth at least tasting. And if you do sample it, the analogy can be continued, and you could find that this entree is the beginning of the greatest and most generous free lunch of all: a seat at the everlasting banquet in the Kingdom of Heaven. This is a step in faith of course, but why not try it, it is free and utterly unconditional?

Anthony Ashwell

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Church Calendar - February 2000

1 Brigid, Abbess of Kildare, c.525

*"The great fact of her life is the foundation of a community of dedicated women at Kildare."

*"The cultus of St. Brigid spread far beyond her native land; In England and Scotland churches were dedicated in her honour as St. Bride, and in Wales as Ffraid Santes."

2 The Presentation of Christ in the Temple (Candlemas)

Luke 2, v. 22-40.

3 Anskar, Archbishop of Hamburg, Missionary in Denmark and Sweden, 865.

6 The Fifth Sunday before Lent

10 Scholastica, Sister of Benedict. Abbess of Plombariola, c.543.

13 The Fourth Sunday before Lent

14 Cyril and Methodius, Missionaries to the Slavs, 869 & 885.

Valentine, Martyr at Rome, c.269.

15 Sigfrid, Bishop, Apostle of Sweden, 1045.

Thomas Bray, Priest. Founder of the SPCK and the SPG, 1730.

17 Janani Luwum, Archbishop of Uganda. Martyr, 1977.

20 The Third Sunday before Lent

23 Polycarp, Bishop of Smyrna. Martyr, c.155.

27 The Second Sunday before Lent George Herbert, Priest, poet. 1633.

*The references in inverted commas come from "The Penguin Dictionary of Saints" 1965.

Rosemary Earnshaw

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Valley Notes

New Year's Eve and New Year's Day

The special services held in the Valley's churches were all extremely well attended. It was a great pleasure for all to share in the various activities in both churches and villages. Many thanks to everyone who spent so much time and effort in preparing for the various events, and seeing them to their happy conclusions.

Ash Wednesday 8th March 2000



10.00 am

Burton Bradstock (BCP)

10.00 am

Puncknowle (BCP)

11.30 am

Shipton Gorge (BCP)

7.00 pm Burton Bradstock (Rite A Holy

Communion for the Beginning of Lent)

7.00 pm



a Pre-Lent Discussion Series

2. The supportive family. ( Discussion led by Mike Read )

February 2nd at 8 Coombes Close, Litton Cheney ( 482315 )

3. The significance of the shepherds. (Discussion led by Revd. Keith Fisher)

February 9th at Fir Tree Cottage, Shipton Gorge (897610)

February 16th at 11 Barges Close, Litton Cheney ( 482598 )

4. Astrologers in the Gospel ( Discussion led by Rev'd.Anthony Ashwell )

February 23rd at Casterbridge, Annings La., B.Bradstock (897408) March lst at The Rectory, Litton Cheney ( 482302 )

All these discussion groups commence at 7.30 pm with coffee and should finish in time for "home" at 9.15 pm.

Mothers' Union

The next meeting will be held on Thursday 24th February at 2.15 p.m. at The Rectory, Burton Bradstock when the speakers will be Canon John & Mary Whetten from Beaminster.

Burton Bradstock School

The staff, school Governors and I are currently producing the School Development Plan for the next year. This plan, covering all aspects of school life, is produced annually with the aim of ensuring that resources are effectively targeted at agreed initiatives thereby minimising waste. Oops, sorry I'll just deactivate my 'industryspeak' override button…there, that's better.

I set up this plan ten years ago when I first arrived at the school and in those days it was a relatively short checklist of curriculum and organisational issues that we would run down, reflect on and develop as appropriate to the needs of the school. For example, one year we would target Science, explore how we taught it, bring in specialists to advise us on developments in the teaching of it and re-resource the school accordingly. The key factor driving this was the needs of the school as perceived by its staff, parents and governors and good schools used self-evaluation systems to do this.

Next year's plan will be an integral part of a chain of plans. I have fought to continue to put the school's actual needs at the forefront of this plan, but increasingly the pressures now come from Local Education Authority and overridingly (My spellchecker tells me there's no such word as this but I boldly ignore the red squiggle and press on.) national initiatives. It goes like this. Firstly we consider our school needs and list them. We then compare that list with our village and town school colleagues, see where there are points of similarity and produce Cluster (village schools) and Pyramid (all local schools) plans. These plans need to include key elements of the Local Educational Authority Development Plan and that is driven by an annual Central Government Plan. This plan originates from OfSTED evidence, education 'experts' and us, the general public (as gleaned from left or right wing newspaper opinion columns depending on who's in power).

In between producing plans we tinker about with other small jobs around the school… like educating children, etc.

Talking of children, it's competition time. The first primary aged child that tells me how many times I've used the word 'Plan' in this article will win a tube of smarties with all the black ones taken out 'cus I like them.

Best Wishes

David Powell

100 Club Winners - December

Sajiv Vij £20

E. Arscott £10

B. Lingley £5

Thorner's School, Litton Cheney

We are now well into the term, back into routines, the millennium celebrations seem a long time ago. There was a lot of talk about the millennium and all the associated problems, thankfully none of them materialised, it follows the pattern of the eclipse viewing last summer. I wonder what will be the next thing of interest to take the media's attention?

School is very similar, we introduce new topics and try to interest the pupil, engaging their enthusiasm for learning, encouraging them to find out and ask questions for themselves. One of the pleasures of teaching is to see the obvious enthusiasm from the class, knowing that you have made a difference to them and that they are enjoying learning.

During my time of talking to parents over a number of years it has been a real disappointment to me personally that so many people hate mathematics and in particular algebra. Parents remember back to their school days and the pages of arithmetical sums they had to do, maybe even the satisfaction of getting a page of sums all correct (or the horror that there were so many mistakes!) With the introduction of the numeracy hour the pupils of today are getting a firmer grounding in the basic knowledge as well as more understanding of the different methods of computation. We all have different preferences as to a way of working, be it in mathematics or doing the odd jobs around the house. Hopefully in the future we will have a population who enjoy mathematics and are more willing to try out new ideas to solve problems, letting calculators and computers do the more mundane tasks for them. This is the year for mathematics, so let us hope that the government supports it in a similar way to the literacy hour and reading in particular last year.

Alison Johnstone, Headteacher.

100 Club winners for January

These amounts are for this month only

£50 Ruth Pitcher

£25 Maia Whaley




The Bride Valley Brownies are in need of your help. T present Brown Ohewl is standing down after 4 years' service and the Bridport District are currently seeking a replacement, to begin in September 2000. No qualifications or experience are necessary.

Perhaps you have happy memories of being a Brownie or Guide and would care to give something back to Guiding? The pack presently meets on Wednesday evenings, but the day and time could change to suit the new leader.

If you, or anyone else you know of, are interested and would like to know more, please contact the District Commissioner, Mrs. H. Purse, on 01308 423220 or the present Brown Owl, Mrs. H. Fox, on 01308 482501.



The next meeting will be on Wednesday, 9th February at the home of Suzie Miles, 4 Garden Close, Litton Cheney starting at 8.0 p.m. Patricia Munro will demonstrate Spinning, Weaving and Dyeing. New members most welcome.

Margaret Elliott


Bride Valley Gardening Club

The next meeting will be on Monday, 14th February when Mr. Denis Bowman will give a talk on Vegetable Growing. The venue as usual will be Thorner's School, Litton Cheney, at 7.30 p.m.

John Rowlands


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BURTON BRADSTOCK St Mary's Burton Bradstock

Village Correspondent Mr Basil Dent

2, Norburton, Burton Bradstock. Tel:- (01308) 897125

Mid Week Worship -

Holy Communion Wednesdays at 10.00 a.m. followed by coffee in the Rectory

Choir Practices Fridays at 6.00 p.m.

Gift Sunday 20th February The Leprosy Mission

The Preacher at Matins at 11 am: The Revd Ray Burnish

The next Tiny Tots / Pram Services will be held on Fridays 4th February and 3rd March.

The next Healing Service at St Mary's will be held on Wednesday 9th February at 7 pm. The Lent Course will be taking place on the Wednesdays in Lent, so Healing Services will be on Mondays 13th March and 10th April, then Wednesday 3rd May.

The Parochial Church Council next meets on Monday 21st February in church at 7.00 pm.

The Annual Parochial Church Meeting takes place on Monday 20th March at 7.30 pm in church.




29th December Beatrice J. Samways

12th January F.A.L. (Anne) Gale

19th January E.M. (Sally) Pearce

Family Carol Service. The Nativity. Thank you to all the children who performed so well, and to everyone who took part in the service. Thank you also to all who made cakes and served the tea, and to everyone who came and gave support to the children. The collection for Mountjoy School was £58. Thank you to everyone who gave so generously.

Pam Atkinson.

Carol Singing around the village on Monday 13th December raised £300 for The Children's Society. Thank you to all 'ye singers', to David Powell on his melodeon, John and Doreen Crawford in Howarth Close for their very welcome warm drinks, and to Mr. & Mrs. Halliwell at The Dove Inn for their very welcome refreshments to some cold and tired travellers.

Pam Atkinson.


Thank you to everyone who decorated the church with flowers and greenery for Christmas. Your help was very much appreciated.

Also, thank you to Steve and Lesley, Jake and Gemma Dove for decorating the Christmas tree; it looked lovely, and to those who brought a prayer to hang on the tree.

Thank you to everyone who donated toys at the Crib Service.

Pam Atkinson.

Sunday Club Millennium Party. Thank you to everyone who came and helped at the party. The children seemed to have a jolly good time; plenty of games and food for everyone.

Lent Lunches this year will be on Fridays 12 noon to 2 pm from the 10th March to the 14th April inclusive. Venues and the charities will be given in the March edition of the BVN.

Pam Atkinson.

Millennium logo



Celebrations for Millennium Year ... the year 2000 ... should be fun, but aren't the church members of St Mary's, Burton Bradstock carrying things a little too far with their celebrations in July? Their Special Day in the Marquee on the playing field is to be Sunday 9th July 2000, a fine opportunity for inviting friends and visitors to share in the joy of the Christian message in a fitting and becoming manner.

But a clown? Can they be serious? I asked Barbara Ivall, co-ordinator in chief, why they had come up with this mad idea.

"Wilbur's a member of the Fellowship of Christian Magicians of Europe," she said. "We're lucky to get him. He calls himself a Holy Fool and children love him. We're starting the day with an informal family communion service followed by a drama and music production by the school children of JC2000. The emphasis is on enjoyment. For the evening's Outreach Event we have a first class speaker in the person of Lance Pierson to be to the rest of us what Wilbur the Grate is to the children. There will be music and singing, handbell ringing and displays of all sorts, including a bookstall supplied by Good Books of Bridport. Good food too and a party atmosphere. After all we're celebrating a birthday, aren't we?"

Put like that the clown seems an obvious choice for the afternoon. And the birthday tea, too. But how will they fit 2000 candles on the birthday cake?

Yes, Sunday 9th July 2000 will be fun, but underneath it all there's a serious message. Good luck to Wilbur the Grate. Maybe we should all be considered little children on the day and listen to what he has to say about the joy of the Christian message.

So ...........ROLL UP! ROLL UP! ROLL UP!

Sheila Spencer-Smith

See future editions of the B.V.N. for further details of the programme for Sunday 9th July

Burton Bradstock - An Internet Web Site for the Millennium.

Did you know that Burton Bradstock now has its own Village web site on the Internet, sponsored by the Parish Council? If you have/or have access to a personal computer, you can see what has been done so far - the domain name is:

Although still in its developmental stage, you can already see details on the following organisations by clicking on "What's On" which tells you about the organisations and what events are planned:

Women's Institute

Village Society

Royal British Legion

Parish Council

Burton Bradstock Players - giving details of the panto Cinderella.

Bride Valley Scout Group

Link to Burton Bradstock School (who already have their own web site).

Plus there is an interesting article specially written for us by Richard Edmonds (Jurassic Coast Project Officer - Dorset County Council) on the Jurassic Coast around Burton Bradstock. Look in "Heritage Coast" to find the article.

Whether you can find a way to view the web site or not, the Committee would like to show anyone who is interested in what has been done so far at an open meeting that will be held at Burton Bradstock School on Monday, 28th. February, 2000 commencing at 7:00pm.

In addition, the committee needs help so that we can ensure we are doing the right things for the village, and to gain assistance in developing the site itself Computer-wise residents would be very welcome, but you do not have to know anything at all about computing to be able to help! We also need people with ideas, someone willing to do a bit of researching, maybe someone has some old pictures we could copy, or films or videos, stories, etc. etc. that will help to make the site of real use, interest and relevance to the people of Burton Bradstock. So please come along if you think you can help, or if you are just curious to see what has been done so far.

If you would like to talk to someone about it, or you have some material or ideas that you think would be of interest, please call Ken Pett (secretary of the Burton Bradstock Village Web Site Committee) on 897 550 or Tim Linford (Chairman) on 897 363, who will be only too happy to discuss it with you.

It would also be very helpful to find out who has an e-mail address - we are increasingly (and pleasantly) surprised to find just how many villagers are already 'on the net'! You can e-mail us by using the 'please e-mail us with your comments' facility on the web site itself, or you can e-mail either Tim or Ken as follows:

Tim Linford

Ken Pett

And don't forget the meeting - Burton Bradstock School - Monday 28th. February at 7: 00pm!

Report on the December meeting of the Burton Bradstock Village Society

The December meeting of the Burton Bradstock Village Society formed an excellent sequel to the October talk on the Jurassic Coast Project. This time Mr. Bill Putnam, former Principal Lecturer in Archaeology at Bournemouth University, gave an insight into the earliest human race, as opposed to the rocks, fossils and dinosaurs, discussed by Richard Edmunds. Bill explained how, with the help of radio-carbon dating, a by-product of atomic research in the Second World War, and other modern technology, the twentieth century has seen an astounding period of research in the world of archeology. Now it is possible to have absolute dating of remote periods and, with it, a total historic revolution has developed. Members were shown slides of everyday objects used some 3 million years ago by our ancestors. The earliest man-made objects so far found in Dorset are stone axes from about 15,000 years ago; the most visible from our prehistoric past are the great Iron Age hill forts like Maiden Castle and Badbury Rings. Members were amazed to see what prehistoric men had built with such basic tools.

I couldn't help wondering as I made my way home, picking my route carefully around the pot-holes, just what they would have made of the recent road works in Annings Lane!

The next meeting will be held on 25th February when Mr. Gerald Sweetman will talk on "The Lake District & North Yorkshire".

Sheila Pett


Every child up to the age of 17 years inclusive living in the Parish of Burton Bradstock is entitled to a FREE Millennium china mug. OVER 30 children did NOT collect theirs when the Reading Room was open on Saturday 18th December for distribution.

SO PLEASE, MUMS AND DADS, will you come or send the older children to collect them from Peter Colbert at Pound House, High Street as soon as possible, at any time.

The Millennium mugs are also on sale at the Post Office at £2.50.

Peter Colbert

Burton Bradstock Post Office - January 2000

You may have read in the local and national press about Benefits Agency plans to pay pensions into bank accounts, with the consequent threat of Post Office closures. The facts, as I understand them, are these:

i.) From 2003 onwards the Benefits Agency intend to pay all pensions by Automatic Credit Transfer into bank accounts rather than in cash over Post Office counters. This is to save on costs and reduce fraud.

ii.)Over 60% of rural parishes have a Post Office. Only 5% have a bank. (Dept of Trade and Industry figures.)

iii.) A subpostmaster's income is determined by how much business he or she does. Payment is made for each transaction: each pension or allowance paid, each £1 worth of stamps sold, etc. Loss of business means loss of income and could result in a Post Office becoming unviable.

iv.) The Federation of Subpostmasters estimates that ending pension and benefit payments in cash could mean a loss of between one third and one half of all a Post Office's business.

v.) Every Post Office in this country is to be computerised within the next year or two, which could allow the transaction of new business to help replace any loss from withdrawal of benefit payments, though at present there is no information on what this new business might be.

vi.) Since I became subpostmaster at Burton Bradstock in 1979 the village Post Offices in West Bexington, Shipton Gorge, Puncknowle and Litton Cheney have all closed.

You might not know that Post Offices don't just sell stamps and cash benefits. At most Post Offices (including Burton Bradstock P.O.) you can:

Pay BT, SWEB, British Gas and some water bills free of charge

Buy your TV licence

Purchase savings stamps towards BT and gas bills, TV licence and road tax

Pay council tax and housing authority rents free of charge

Order foreign currency and travellers cheques

Open and operate Girobank accounts and National Savings products

Make Lloyds Bank and Co-operative Bank deposits and cash withdrawals free of charge

Buy postal orders, BT 'phone cards and Littlewoods lottery scratchcards.

I hope these notes may make a confusing issue a little clearer. Thanks for taking the time to read this, and thank you for your support of your Post Office over my (nearly) 21 years here. If I haven't seen you to wish you this in person, have a happy and successful New Year.

Jon Wyatt

The Children's Society

I would like to thank everyone who braved a very cold night to come carol singing for the Society. We were quite strong in number and somehow managed to get to the home of John and Doreen Crawford in Howarth Close, who were waiting for us with what has become their customary tray of warming drinks, which are always greatly appreciated. We were all frozen by the time we arrived at the Dove Inn, where we had kindly been invited to sing and then to enjoy a delicious hot chicken stew and bread rolls, which were tucked into with great gusto. We are extremely grateful to Mr. and Mrs. Halliwell for their thoughtful hospitality.

Thanks also go to David Powell who led our singing on his melodeon - without him we were all singing different notes! Last but not least, thanks to Pam Atkinson for keeping us all on the move. With a generous donation from a lady who always remembers us, the total collected was £300. This sum has raised the total for the year to £1,582. This has now been sent to the Society . Many, many thanks to you all.

Greta Heal

Burton Bradstock Women's Institute

December 1999 Meeting

At the December meeting on the 14th of the month 48 members and 1 guest enjoyed a hands-on demonstration of Christmas tree decorations given by Mrs Thearle. Thanks were expressed to everyone participating in the successful Victorian afternoon in November at which over £800 was raised.

Anne Rees won the monthly flower of the month competition with her yellow rose. The silver bud vase for the over-all winner for the past year was presented to Barbara Pursey.

100 Club winners: 1st Beryl Perry, 2nd Len Green, 3rd Sheila Bryant

Christmas 100 Club winners: 1st Elizabeth Young, 2nd Mr C Arscott 3rd Brian Pursey

Sheila Spencer-Smith

January 2000 - 1st Meeting of the New Millennium

President Wendy Green welcomed 2 new members, 1 guest and 50 members to the first meeting of the new Millennium and wished everyone a happy and healthy New Year. Meanwhile our guest speaker's companion, a strikingly attractive creature with velvety brown eyes, a glossy black coat and webbed feet sat patiently behind the curtain awaiting her entrance. Chloe, an adorable four-and-a-half year-old, 50 kilo Newfoundland bitch belonging to Mr. Keith Rowley came down to visit her audience, paying particular attention to the dog owners and their interesting scents. Since retiring he has devoted his life to training "Newfies", as he calls them, in water rescue and carting. He described the role of this ancient working breed used not only on fishing vessels, when they helped haul in the nets, carry equipment and save the lives of sailors, but also on punts gathering up water fowl, and even as guard dogs in the home. We all remember "Nana" the family pet of Wendy in the story of Peter Pan - she was a cuddly Newfie. He likened her to a boat with 4 legs, a sort of marine husky with her remarkable double coat with oily top layer, her third eyelid, her rudder-like tail, extraordinary lung capacity and her ability to swim with a rope in her jaws without water entering her mouth. Chloe regularly raises money at Lyme Regis for the RNLI and the Devon Air Ambulance and Mr. Rowley's other dog has been known to drag the Lyme Lifeboat with full crew aboard. Chloe brought along her bowl and was the first to receive her tea with milk and sugar when the interval came all too soon. We look forward to the badgers in next month's talk "Badger Watching!"

When we had all settled down again, first priority was to make a decision regarding our Christmas Lunch 2000, as the firm booking has to be made shortly. Interesting outings are planned for the year, the first to Longleat House and Safari Park in April. Justin Mallinson, Chairman of the Millennium Committee, had written a gracious letter of thanks for use of the W.I. Hall in the final hour of the last Century, when Peter Colbert had served punch and George Hirst had entertained on his accordion. The Spring Fair will go ahead as usual and it is hoped that new blood will come on to the Committee in the sure certainty that none will be spilt. Our Institute is now featured on the Village Web Site, presently with photographs of the highly successful Victorian Christmas Fair.

Margaret Ackland won Flower of the Month with a hellebore and 100 Club winners were Jill Spinney, the Bowls Club (for the 2nd successive month and again we thank them most sincerely for donating both sums to our Hall Rebuilding Fund), Mary Bailey & Beryl Perry.

Carol Lumley

Tea and Chat in the W.I. Hall

Please note, there will be no Tea and Chat session in February, but anyone in the village is most welcome to join us on Thursday, 2nd March and, if you enjoy it, again on Thursday, 30th March from 2.45 pm to 4.00 pm. Why not come along for a cup of tea, then visit the Library, which is open at the same time?

Wendy Green


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SWYRE Holy Trinity Swyre

Village Correspondent: Mrs.Gilly Doar

Paddock Lodge Swyre

Our early "Christmas Midnight mass" turned out to be by candlelight, which we were not prepared for, and had only a few odd extra candle-ends available. Who were they in the area , I wonder, who were all heating their water, warming their houses, and roasting their turkeys at 9.30 p.m. on Christmas Eve? Or did the problem lie with the flooding locally? Even if we'd had electricity, there would not have been an organist, for part of the road from Bridport, from which he was travelling, was under water. Never mind; 10 of us enjoyed a quiet said Service, peacefully joining Christendom at the Holy Stable.

The Songs of Praise on the afternoon of January 2nd was a lovely occasion, and we bolted through 8 late carols accompanied by Paul Cheater, and were then restored to physical strength with tea and mince-pies. Thank you all who helped.

There are some who object to eating and drinking in church, but such has been going on since the Middle Ages, particularly where there was no local hall available (as in the case of Swyre). I once visited a church in Wales where the old nave was being used for housing cattle, with the gated-off chancel being reserved for worship. At harvest-time apparently, the villagers cleared out the cattle, swept the floors, and had the 'mummy and daddy' of a Harvest Thanksgiving, with feasting , music and dancing.

I know of individuals locally who would like to see our present churches being converted (back) to dual-purpose buildings (for both religious and secular activities), again especially where there is no adequate local hall. Perhaps I'm one of those individuals!

Anthony Ashwell

Welcome to Stephen and Kim Jarvis who along with their children Stephanie and Luke have come to live at number 24.


New Year

On New Year's Eve friends and neighbours gathered at Holy Trinity Church to hear the New Millennium rung in by Ken Howard. Mulled wine was kindly provided by Sid Marshall. Mince pies were supplied by Vera Howard and Madeline Marshall. Jan Dixon, as always busy with her camera, photographed the event. Alastair Milree entertained us on the organ with some very good playing.



Accounts for Swyre will be audited on 17th February at the District Auditors Office, Colliton Park, Dorchester at 2.00pm. For further details see the Parish Notice Board.

Madeline Marshall

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Village Correspondent: Mrs Dorothy Barlow

Collingbourne, Hoopers Lane, Puncknowle

Telephone: (01308) 897761

Christmas Time again saw a beautifully decorated church; clearly a huge amount of thought and energy had been put into the arranging. Particularly remarkable were the candles for the Carol Service. Anna and Trevor Ware must have collected together hundreds of candle-ends, but when arranged along the window-sills (and lit!), they made a marvellous display. Thank you, everybody.

Christingle Service.

This will be on 6th February at 9.30 a.m., as a Family Service. It's a wonderful way both to worship God, and to support the work of the Children's Society. Please do come along.

Anthony Ashwell


Seven adults and three enthusiastic children turned out on a very damp evening to sing carols and the record sum of £114.00 was raised for the Bridport Branch of Parkinsons Disease. Many thanks to Mick Lawless for the welcome soup and mincepies at the end of the evening.



This will be held on Wednesday 2nd February at 7.30 p.m. in the Church Hall (not the 3rd as in January B.V.N). Arthur Pearse will be talking and will show slides on Australian Aboriginal Art and rock paintings.

On Wednesday lst March Gus Gaskin, a retired Metropolitan policeman, will give a light-hearted talk on his work in the force. This included at one time having Buckingham Palace on his beat.

Do please come to this the last meeting of the season.

CONGRATULATIONS to Mrs.Hilda Laver who celebrated her 93rd birthday on January 10th.

ADVANCE NOTICE The Frugal Lunch will be held on Friday March 17th at 12.30 p.m. in the Church Hall. Further details will be in the March B.V.N.

Puncknowle Art Group

Apologies for missing the January issue but firstly I would like to thank on behalf of all members Elizabeth Jacoby who came to a November meeting and showed us her beautiful stained glass work. The meetings for February are on the 4th at the Crown ' Stencilling with Sallie', the 18th, at the Crown to be arranged and 3rd March Muriel talking about 'Hinterglasmalerei' (translation painting behind glass) also at the Crown.


Bride Valley Fledglings Playgroup News

Thank you to everybody who supported our fund-raising BINGO evening held in November - hope you all enjoyed it.

During the Autumn term, we welcomed some new children - Ellie Timms, Rebecca Talbot, Jack Arak-Newman and Flora Jevons. Flora's mum, Sally, very kindly helped us with our music by playing the piano while we learned our Christmas songs & carols. This year we also helped to produce our own Fledglings Christmas cards (finished thanks to Megan's mum and dad, Claire and Russell) and tree ornaments.

Our previous Playleader, Jan Cogan, has stepped down, but we are pleased to say that she will still be helping our new Playleader, Carol Bennett, along with parents on our helpers rota - thanks everybody! We are open Monday, Tuesday and Thursday mornings in Puncknowle Hall - if you are interested in finding out more about us, please call in or ring Playleader, Carol Bennett, on 01308 897771.

Puncknowle Parish Council

The next meeting will take place on Tuesday, 1st February at 7.30 pm in the Village Hall.

Drives Footpath: People wishing to object to the intention of modifying the footpath for this path, need to contact Dorset County Council before the 18th February. There is a copy of the order and map lodged with the Parish Clerk, 897322.

Dorchester Bus Service: This service on Wednesdays and Fridays has been extended to start from Bridport and to divert to serve West Bexington. It will now be run by Mike Halford. Travel tokens issued by W.D.D.C. will be accepted on the bus and the Parish Council is in negotiations with County to see if we can adjust the anomaly that Southern National reduced price travel cards are not valid on this route. Watch this space, and please contact me if you are affected, or experiencing difficulties. We are also raising the matter of the increase in fares.

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St Mary's Litton Cheney LITTON CHENEY

Village Correspondents: Mr & Mrs. N.Gardener

1 Rose Cottages, Litton Cheney

Tel: ( 01308 ) 482323

The Christmas Services. As I said in a sermon in early January, the attendance at our Services is thought-provoking.

Sunday Family Carol Service: about 80.

Christmas Eve Crib Service (4.00 p.m.): about 55 (in atrocious weather).

Midnight Christmas Communion: about 40 (on a lovely night).

The comparison between the almost totally unstructured Crib Service which was accompanied by the roar of rain hammering on the roof, and the formal "Midnight Mass", raises some interesting issues concerning religious practice today. To some extent, this trend away from Anglican liturgical formality was also seen at our Millennium Service (see separate report).

The Christmas Decorations. This year the tree was as beautiful as ever (thank you, provider and decorators), the decorations and flowers as artistic and fragrant as ever (thank you again, experts), and the murals original and innovative. These last were a new venture and much admired; thank you, teachers and children, who helped with these, and members of the Family Service Committee who became experts in "blue-tack" application.

Anthony Ashwell


Many people of all ages worked very hard to make our Carol Service what many described as "a good old fashioned village Carol Service". The children at Thorner's provided drawings and life size figures for the Church. Whilst Mary and Joseph and the others have fallen from the walls, the drawings can still be seen at the back of the church, but will have to come down during February.

Thorner's School also provided readers and a tri-lingual choir, and we are grateful to Alison Johnstone for her co-operation with all that the children did. Thank you too for the mince pies, coffee and other drinks which we provided. The star mince pie maker is Paul ..., apparently!

If you were struck down by the "throat bug" and missed the Carol Service, the advice is to book your bout of 'flu at another time of the year, so that you are free to attend next December.

Ian Slark (482280)

ONCE AGAIN many thanks to Mrs. Gilbey and her sister for the electricity for the Village Christmas Tree lights. Also, thanks to the Village Society for donating the tree and Broomhill Nursery for delivery.

CAROLLING ROUND LITTON - 16th December 1999.

A be-spangled band of cheery carollers, including Mother Christmas, two reindeer and a happy Labrador, set out on a still clear night to raise money for the Village Millennium Fund.

As speed was of the essence to get round Litton it was not possible to sing a carol at every door, but villagers were understanding and generous towards our stalwart collectors - one handsome donation of small change, yielding a large fifteen pounds! By kind invitation warming refreshments were taken at The Mill, and the carollers were persuaded, some say bullied, to set out again to make several more stops before ending up at The White Horse, where, kindly fortified with mince pies and mulled wine, the evening was rounded off with poems and Christmas songs, everyone joining in, with £158.30 being added to the Fund. Thank you One and All !

Barbara Whillock


Tuesday, February 15th 2000, 8.00 p.m. - Thorner's School

Happy New Year and Century to all our members

The next meeting is as above. The speaker will be one of the Country Rangers talking about some of their projects.

Unfortunately, Mr. Peter Westgate is unable to speak to us in March owing to health problems. However, we have been fortunate that Mr. Nigel Spring of the Kingcombe Centre has agreed to take his place with a talk about the Kingcombe Valley, touching, of course, on the centre,

Members - YOU DID ASK FOR THE LECTURES TO BE RESUMED. PLEASE do try .and attend, and bring your friends, otherwise the programmes are not viable.

Meg Turner

Litton Cheney Millenium Celebrations

Many people attended the unveiling of the Millennium Stone on New Year's Day. We have planted 25kg of daffodil bulbs around the village and will expect to see the benefit next year.

The main function of the Celebrations will be the Millennium Party on 29 April 2000 which will be held in a large marquee in Court Close Field at 6.30 pm; presentations of Litton Cheney AD 2000 mugs will be made to all young people living in the village - mugs will also be on sale at £3.50 for gifts to grandchildren and others.

Everyone in the village is invited and committee members will be coming round to sell tickets for £1 in due course. Tickets will include a roast beef and sausage barbecue organised by John Randall and there will be a Bar with donations.

Peter Bowditch who played at the Harvest Supper will be playing again and it should be a very special occasion.

Village Album

Diana Spicer, helped by Freddy who has done all the captions, Jim lzzard, Austin Slade, Virginia McShane and Pearl Trott, has organised two Village Books with photographs of all residents and their houses. If you would like to see these books and help to raise funds for the Millennium Party, do come to a Coffee Morning, either in the Church Hall on Saturday February 5 or at The Cottage on Saturday April 8; both occasions will be open from 10.00am until 1.00pm and there will be Bring & Buy Stalls and a Raffle.

Tree Planting

50 small native trees will be planted at the Litton Cheney Playing Field on Saturday March 11 at 10.00 part of the Millennium Celebrations. Villagers are invited to "Plant a Tree" for 50p or to "Adopt a Tree" for £2.50 which will entitle them to have their names printed on a metal tag attached to the tree. Either way we hope that villagers will feel encouraged to care for their trees until they are firmly established.

If you would like to Adopt a Tree please phone Mary Anderson (482326) and if you would like to Plant a Tree come along to the Playing Field on Saturday March 11 at 10.00am We will provide a spade but we suggest you wear gum boots.

Hugh Lindsay

Millennium Fund Money Raising Ideas???

Please let me, or anyone on the Fund Raising Committee, know if you would like to do something to raise money towards the Village Party, etc... If we can help we will. Thank you for coming to the unveiling of the Millennium Stone, a promising start to 2000. Happy New Year!

Barbara Whillock, 482457

Litton Cheney Parish Council

In the last two months the Parish Council has received five complaints from residents about dog fouling of the village roads, open spaces, and even their front gardens. Please would dog owners take greater care to prevent or remove the offending droppings. Failure to comply will inevitably lead to the Council having to resort to calling in the Dog Warden, who can fine the offending dog owners. We apologise to those dog owners, who do take care of the fouling, for the necessity to publish this notice.

Marking the Millennium at Litton Cheney

Did you hear the bells on New Year's Eve? Muffled for the old year then loud and clear for the New? Some people looked out and saw the church tower outlined in fireworks, with rockets looking as though they were shooting from the top, which must have been splendid and a wonderful accompaniment to the sound of the bells. Then having done their bit, the ringers had their own party to celebrate the new millennium and the privilege of ringing for such a special occasion.

Later on New Year's Day there was another chance to ring for posterity with bells from all over Britain at mid-day, to mark the year 2000 and join a service in St. Mary's with over a hundred other people. Afterwards everyone walked down to the bus shelter where a memorial stone (generously donated by a well known local builder!), inscribed with the village name and year, was unveiled by Veronica Kingston. This ceremony and the blessing of the stone, performed by the vicar with water from the stream and a traditional sprig of rosemary, were approved with much clapping and taking of photographs. (Where was the Champagne, Eddie?)

For the record, those ringing that night and the next day included: Gordon Anderson, Eddie Fry (captain), Bob Jones, Patricia and Malcolm Munro, Ian Slark, Freddie Spicer, John Woollen (all from Litton), Neil and Kelly Anderson (Puncknowle), Jill Maltby, Patrick Frost and Jan from Long Bredy. If you would like to know more about the bells or perhaps like to try your hand at ringing, contact Eddie Fry on 482260.

Malcolm and Patricia Munro

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St Peter's Long Bredy LONG BREDY

Village Correspondents: Mr & Mrs Patrick Frost


Tel ( 01308 ) 482269

Full-house again for the Christmas Day Service, and by far the best-attended Christmas Service at the east end of the Bride Valley. Odd that the routine monthly Holy Communion Service at St. Peter's is the worst-attended Service at the east end. A millennial resolution for Long Bredy Churchmembers to correct this imbalance?

Anthony Ashwell

A December Baby. Sincere congratulations to Clare and Guy Schwinge on the birth of Anna Francesca on the 5th December.

Christmas Lights. The seasonal lights outside a considerable number of houses in the village were even more spectacular than last year, and a great credit to those householders who added to the Millennium celebrations as well as the Christmas Festival by so doing.

Millennium Party. The best panto seen for many a year in Long Bredy was performed at the Millennium Party. Everything went according to plan. The ugly sisters were shockingly convincing, and in the end Prince Charming got the girl. Everyone at the party lived happily ever after! No names, no packdrill at this stage, but for further details and a full cast photograph, see the Friday 7th January edition of the Bridport News.

Hip, hip, hooray! Over the last few weeks, not one but two of Longbredy's bellringers have been fitted with new hips, and are making good progress. They would like to point out that it is not the activity on the end of a rope which has caused replacement limbs to be needed. It is more likely the fact that they both milked cows for umpteen years, and periodically suffered the knocks and shoves associated with this sector of farming life. [So does this "get well soon" message represent another pat on the back for them both? - Sub-Ed.]

WOMEN'S INSTITUTE News and information

The first meeting of the new millennium saw a somewhat depleted attendance of members due to the 'flu bug and other illnesses taking their toll. On a happier note, President Elinor Frost welcomed back Jenny Cox who is rejoining the Institute. Birthday posies were presented to Phyllis White, Hilary Green and Mary Slark.

A financial report was given and the Spring Council Meeting was discussed, which will take place in Poole on 30th March.

Secretary, Frances Young, read letters of thanks from visitors who had attended the Christmas party.

The Speaker was member Valerie Cameron who was accompanied by her husband to show slides taken in Hampshire, Sussex, Wiltshire and Dorset. They commenced with beautiful close-ups of wild birds, followed by fungi - these last being easier to catch on camera, not being in the habit of flying off! Flowers and orchids followed, concluding with wildfowl, some taken at Slimbridge. They were warmly thanked by Valerie Shepherd.

The President thanked three members for doing the teas at short notice. The next meeting will take place at Litton Cheney at 7.30 p.m. on lst February when Mr. Freddie Spicer will talk about the Citizens Advice Bureau.

Long Bredy & Litton Cheney Institute

Mrs. B.Champkins, Pins Knoll, Litton Cheney, Dorchester DT 2 9AN

Dorset County Federation Tel: 01308 482421


And Finally... From a local newspaper in the Midlands: "Would the Weight-Watchers attending classes in the Sports Hall please use the wide double doors at the side of the building, instead of the narrow single door at the front entrance."

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LITTLEBREDY St Michael & All Angels Littlebredy


Christmas already seems some time ago, but it is not too late to thank all those from this village who contributed to the very enjoyable Carol Service in Longbredy Church just beforehand. Sandra March organized some of the children of the village into a most impressive tableau of the Nativity Scene, plus a rota of readers who carried off their parts with great panache, as well as taking part in a beautiful John Rutter anthem with the Longbredy Singers. Thanks too to those who contributed mince pies, cakes, biscuits, mulled wine, etc., for the congregation after the service - much appreciated by all.

Thanks also to those whose generosity contributed over £110.00 to the collections at the village carol singing and at our Christmas Day service. It is traditional that our church gives its Christmas collections to charity, and the recipient will have been decided by the P.C.C. by the time this edition appears.

During last Autumn, successive editions of the magazine charted the progress of Reg Ring through various hospitals, during a period of ill health. It is sad to report now that he will not be returning to 2, Riverside Cottage, where he has lived since 1945. Better news is that he is now happily established at Culliford House in Dorchester, where both his health and his spirits have greatly improved, as visitors around Christmas time can bear out. We wish him well, and hope that his new life will be contented and fulfilling in his new surroundings.

A village meeting to re-activate progress on the Village Hall floor and other matters has been floated in earlier editions. Chris and Judy Yates have kindly agreed to host this, at 7.00 p.m. on Wednesday 23rd February, when it is hoped that as many families as possible will be represented, to contribute to the discussion and any decisions made, as well as to any working parties which are subsequently convened for some of the internal works required.

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SHIPTON GORGE St Martin's Shipton Gorge

Village Correspondent: Mrs.Joy White


3 Gullivers Orchard Shipton Gorge


The Parochial Church Council next meets on Monday 28th February at 7.30 pm at Virginia House.

The Annual Parochial Church Meeting takes place on Thursday 23rd March at 7.30 pm in the Village Hall.



13th January Geoffrey F. Mitchell

St. Martin's Church

December and January were a very busy period for our Church for obvious reasons and it would take up too much room to go into full details of "happenings" and express thanks to those who made them happen, however:-

1. Carol Service: Well over 100 attended, including 14 children. 35 new kneelers were dedicated and are now in use. A "punch and pie" party was held after the service, which was very well attended! This was provided by the P.C.C. and Village Society.

2. Christmas Day Service at 09.30 hrs was also well attended and again there was a fair smattering of children who were very well behaved.

3. On New Year's Day our bells rang out at 12.00 hrs and joined the remainder of the churches in our country. The Rector dedicated the renovated Church Gates and over 40 attended the service.

4. Our Thanks go out to all those who :

(a) Decorated the church and cleared up afterwards

(b) Organised the P & P party and slogged in the kitchen

(c) Spilt blood making a wonderful assortment of kneelers

(d) Produced sufficient money for the renovation of the Church Gates and gave professional expertise freely

(e) Read, played the organ, sang and produced a large decorated Christmas tree

There was, of course, one person who was everywhere and without whom we would have been somewhat pushed - "Thank you, Rector, for everything you did."

There has been a lot of illness in the village before and over Christmas and it has been most noticeable that friends and neighbours have rallied around to help those in need. What more would you expect in this village?!

JPE, Churchwarden

Shipton Gorge Village Carollers

A rain-curtailed tour of the village resulted in £74 being raised for the British Heart Foundation on 23rd December. We were welcomed (dripping) into Virginia House and reluctantly left to head up Rockway, but after this we had to abandon singing and sought welcoming refuge (drippingly) in the New Inn.

Thank you to everyone who gave, and thank you to all the carol party who joined in on such a damp evening.

Molly Roast

"Pop Goes the Century"

We strike a thoroughly topical note by presenting, in conjunction with Dorset Artsreach, at Shipton Gorge Village Hall on Wednesday, 23rd February 2000, commencing at 7.30 p.m., a musical and entertaining show by a small company who have made their mark in a popular earlier appearance at Shipton Gorge. Cosmotheka presents "Pop Goes the Century" - a hundred songs from a hundred years in one hundred minutes! Whatever next!? If anyone can pull this off it is Cosmotheka who mark the turning of the century, running the gamut of music of the nineteen hundreds. Nothing is left out, from early ballads to their beloved music hall routines for which they are renowned, from their long running radio programmes and across the land. What will they make of the Spice Girls and Madonna, as well as "Come into the Garden, Maude"?

Be prepared for some hilarious but always musical answers in this new show, in which Cosmotheka include singer Andrew Frank and Sam at the keyboard. Tickets are available at the New Inn, Shipton Gorge, from members of the Hall Committee or by telephoning 01308 897547 (John Huxtable). Tickets cost £4.00 and are allocated on a first come, first served basis.

Shipton Gorge 100 Club: Winners for the January Draw

£20 - No. 100 - Richard Hewlett

£10 - No. 49 - Fred Stanton

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Millennium Quiz

Answers to last month's Millennium Quiz

Century question
1st Boudicca 61 A.D j
2nd Hadrian 122 b
3rd Constantius 296 q
4th Constantine 306 h
5th Hengest & Horsa 450 o
6th St. Augustine 597 t
7th King Oswald 642 f
8th Adam Bede d. 735 m
9th King Alfred 849-899 d
10th Dunstan 960 k
11th William I 1066 a
12th Thomas Becket 1170 r
13th King John 1215 e
14th Geoffrey Chaucer 1340-1400? l
15th Henry V 1415 i
16th William Shakespeare b. 1564 g
17th Oliver Cromwell 1599-1658 n
18th John Wesley 1703-1791 p
19th Queen Victoria 1819-1901 c
20th Winston Churchill 1874-1965 s

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Axe Valley Ring and Ride Scheme

Its implications for West Bay Bridport & Burton Bradstock

David Tett writes:-

This scheme is one in the main for people with disabilities who find using public transport difficult. They may be wheel - chair bound, blind, live a long way from a bus stop, have difficulty in walking or find the steps of a bus too difficult to manage. Moreover, in some circumstances, there is no public transport available. In contrast to other transport services where a timetable is adhered to, the Ring and Ride service responds directly to passengers' requests who ring a designated number to book a seat.

The service, which originally covered areas in Devon, is being extended into Dorset to include Lyme Regis, Bridport, West Bay, Burton Bradstock, Beaminster and Charmouth.

Town and Parish Councils are being asked to make a contribution towards such a Service at the rate of 10p per head of the population which, in the case of Bridport with a population of 7,260 would amount to £726.00 for the year ending 31 st March 2001.

From replies received, a Survey shows 10 people from Bridport and West Bay would use the Ring and Ride Service with 2 of these requiring an escort. Undoubtedly, the number would grow when the Service commences!

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