Bride Valley News

February 2002


Church Service Times
From The Clergy
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Valley Notes - all the other 'whats on' bits
Burton Bradstock - The Church + other village organisations
Shipton Gorge
Puncknowle & West Bexington
Litton Cheney
Long Bredy
Diary of Events for all Parishes - This month - check it out

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


"Lord, now lettest thou thy servant depart in peace" is the ancient translation of the words said by the Jewish elder Simeon, when Mary and Joseph presented the 40 day old Jesus in the temple. 40 days from Christmas Day brings us to February 2nd, and the Church's Festival to mark this day, which is commonly known as Candlemas. There's much of religious significance in and around Candlemas, and a lot of misunderstanding too, but I would just briefly like to think around this opening sentence of Simeon's, the introduction to what is generally still called the 'Nunc Dimittis'.

Simeon was old (it's politically correct to use 'older' now) he had lived a good life, he had come across Jesus Christ, and now he was ready to die peacefully, to slip away quietly. If life for him had become a battle for survival, this was to be no longer the case, and we can imagine him from this time accepting with thanks each day as it came. He recognised his situation as nearing the end of his life on earth, and his increasing frailty was no longer to be a worry to him.

How far away all this seems to be from where people are today, myself included. I've just 'celebrated' my 60th birthday, and by the law of averages entered the last quarter of my life, though optimists in my situation would argue that I still have at least one third of my life to live. But there you are, I've fallen into my own trap, for I want to suggest that far too much time and energy is spent nowadays in fighting ageing and postponing death, so much so that this, as a topic of conversation, has now taken over first place from the weather. The greeting "How are you?" now needs to be answered in detail, and "goodbye" has been replaced by "take care". Magazines of both genders major on the covering up of wrinkles, grey hair, and the loss of sexual potency. The media rarely use images of older people, though ironically it is the universal wish that we all live long enough to be described as 'older'.

I could go on and on, but won't, except to mention that there is a second and wonderful irony here: that the less we worry about our ageing bodies, the longer we'll live! Put differently, it is concentration on the affairs of the mind, the spiritual, which is the best medicine. How good it must be truthfully to say, as Simeon did, "Lord, when you are ready, I am too".

Anthony Ashwell



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Valley Notes

Ash Wednesday 13th February 2002


10.00 am Burton Bradstock (Traditional order)

10.00 am Littlebredy (Traditional order)

11.30 am Shipton Gorge (Traditional order)

7.00 pm Burton Bradstock (Holy Communion

for the Beginning of Lent, modern order)

7.00 pm Puncknowle (Traditional order)

Lent Course : East End

During the Wednesdays of Lent, but excluding Ash Wednesday and the Wednesday in Holy Week, we shall be following the 'Churches Together in Britain and Ireland' lent course for 2002 entitled 'Called to be Saints'. The format will be the same as for Wednesday Bible Study Group, sessions beginning at 7.30pm and lasting for 1 ½ to 2 hours, including refreshments, study and prayer. This course is only for the east end of the Bride Valley and the west end are following a different course (see separate notice). Anybody is most welcome to come along to any or all of the sessions, and the dates and locations are given below.

February 20th The Old Rectory, Litton Cheney Session 1

February 27th 11 Barges Close, Litton Cheney Session 2

March 6th Church Hall, Puncknowle Session 3

March 13th The Old Rectory, Litton Cheney Session 4

March 20th The Rectory, Litton Cheney Session 5

The titles of the 5 sessions are: Who's called (1); In every place (2); At the right time (3); The hidden revealed (4); Equipped for tomorrow (5).

Don't forget to bring a Bible along.

Further details can be obtained from me.

Anthony Ashwell (482302)

The Vicar's Christmas Highlights

Where does one start in this quick review? Better do it in alphabetical order! Littlebredy: a traditional Carol Service in a full church, and ending up in the churchyard with real sheep (but not real shepherds). Litton Cheney: glorious candlelight for the main Services and quite the most excited congregation at the Crib Service I've ever encountered. Long Bredy: a brilliant Christingle, and the usual delightful Family Service on Christmas Day. Puncknowle: Peter Saunt led the standard fantastic Carol Service with a jam-packed church. Swyre: the wellie-boot Nativity! (see under Swyre).

Anthony Ashwell


Wednesday Bible Study Group

Ash Wednesday this year is on 13th February, and this only gives us the opportunity to undertake a limited study before the Lent Course.

Last autumn a questionnaire was circulated, and the resulting suggestion briefly discussed. Our decision is to study St Paul's Epistle to Philemon.

Here are the details:

6th February (7.30pm) Philemon 'B' Hillside, West Bexington

As usual, please contact Mike Read (897445) or myself for further details.

Anthony Ashwell (482302)


Does Paul present to us the true Gospel of God through Jesus Christ, or has he invented his own? Martin Luther wrote, "In the scholastics I lost Christ, but found him again in Paul." But C.J. Jung said, 'It's frankly disappointing to see how Paul hardly ever allows the real Jesus of Nazareth to get a word in." What do you think?

During LENT we shall be holding five sessions around St. Paul's letter to the Christian Church in Rome, when we shall look at the message and consider its relevance in the 21st century. The sessions will be held in St. Mary's Church, Burton Bradstock, from 7.30pm to 9.15pm on Wednesdays 20th and 27th February, and 6th, 13th and 20th March. All are most welcome to attend.

Mike Read

Bride Valley Team Mnistry

Mothers' Union

Our "Overseas" Meeting will be held at The Rectory, Burton Bradstock on Monday 25th February at 2.30pm. Dr. Michael Thomson will give an illustrated talk on "Problems of Zimbabwe". There will be a Bring & Buy Sale in aid of the Overseas Fund. Please note the change from the usual date. Pam Coventry


Burton Bradstock School

Due entirely to me filing this under 2001 instead of 2002 and E-mailing it without checking, Susan and John printed last year's New Year's article instead of this one. My thanks to the 3 villagers who spotted this!! I have resubmitted it, with some adjustments for tenses!

A happy New Year to you all. Once I'd picked myself up, dusted myself down and made substantial deposits in the bank situated opposite the village garage, I sat down and planned for two staff training days at the start of the spring term.

On Monday the staff came together with an Inspector to consider the main issues arising out of the autumn term review of the school. Opinion had been canvassed from staff, governors, parents and children and the picture that emerged was generally very supportive and positive. It has been helpful in raising issues for growth and development that will feed into this year's School Improvement Plan. This plan sets out initiatives over the coming year. It looks like a business plan, with defined aims and outcomes, costed for value for money.

The next day the staff joined teachers from all other Bridport primary schools for the final training day of a year long programme of computer training. This lottery funded programme has aimed to train staff in the effective use of computers in the classroom. My I.C.T. co-ordinator Lynnette Woodrow has done a great job of keeping the rest of us on track during this work. She has ensured that the less confident teachers have been given extra support while stretching the more computer literate staff. It means that we all now feel that we've closed the gap on the children, who have been born and bought up on the technology that was just a science fiction dream in my youth!

It was great to see so many of you at our computer training presentation in December. The school is looking forward to supporting opportunities for life long learning, particularly in areas such as computer training. If you are interested in this training but missed out on the evening, just fill the questionnaire in from the last B.V.N. and send it to me. If you've mislaid the form phone the school and ask for another copy.

We were all saddened to hear of the death of Frank Bailey. The school has long connections with the Bailey family, and Frank was always a great supporter of our activities. We will all miss him greatly, but will be comforted by the warmest of memories.

Best Wishes,

David Powell

Lucky 100 Club winners for December

£40 C. Wilkinson

£20 M. Mills

£10 A. Smith

£5 V. Aylott

Many apologies to David and our readers -we should have noticed the 01 instead of the 02, particularly as we did not check when the letter seemed familiar.Ed.

Thorner's School, Litton Cheney

Why are schools here? Why am I here? Some people, members of class 4 maybe, could say that they prefer no Mrs J and no school and then they could play football all day! Unfortunately education is here to stay, but what form it will take is another matter. There is a group in Government who are looking into changing the pattern of the school year, creating 5 or even 6 terms, varying them so that different counties had different terms. Now, I ask myself, why? Will it improve education or help those pupils who end up taking important exams while suffering from hayfever, or will it stop those summer dips in learning? Some classrooms are extremely hot during the summer months and children find it uncomfortable to be sitting inside studying. The winter can bring disruption due to extreme weather conditions, failing central heating, snow drifts (well, if you live in that part of the country) where pupils find it difficult to get to school. A thought, - . is it to help staff in education go on cheaper holidays? No, that would not be reasonable, and if they did stagger term dates everyone would be in that situation, less out of season bargains. All the suggested patterns I have seen try to even out the number of weeks for each term and each holiday, and still to have at least a 5 week break in the summer. What about church schools and the Easter week? Easter would sometimes fall within term time and cause a conflict. It seems to me that unless there is a more even spread of holiday and term time it is not worth changing everything.

What is more exciting is the idea of a virtual classroom, where children learn independently at terminals, progress at their own rate and teachers act more as facilitators inspiring learning, with technicians on hand to deal with the inevitable problems in printing and internet connections. But how real is this? Families do have computers at home but they are often used as 'play machines' rather than learning centres and schools have limited space and finances to provide the necessary hardware for this to become a reality. I would like to think that I would be part of this change and see it started if not completed before I retire, - .. a long way off, I assure you. Internet learning has it's dangers, there would be little personal interpretation or drawing on local knowledge and needs.

Personally I hope that there is something between the present situation and the virtual classroom, it is much more exciting to actually play football on the field rather than by mouse! I would hate to see the end of the social interaction; collaborating as part of a team to produce live entertainment for peers is such a valuable experience.

Alison Johnstone Headteacher.


Bride Valley Scout Group

Shortly before Christmas we received the bad news that our bid for lottery money towards new premises had been unsuccessful. Many people will also know that a public meeting was held on 26th January to gather together ideas for raising the rest of the money needed. In the meantime fundraising continues, and we will be re-submitting our lottery application in the near future.

Gill Mayo, who has been treasurer of the BVSG for nearly four years, is resigning at our next AGM in May. On behalf of everyone in the Group, I wish to say a big thank you to Gill for the commitment and hard work that she has always put into the job. If anyone would like to offer to stand as treasurer at the AGM, then please contact Steve Dove (897695), Pat Tucker (897197), or Ruth Brierley (898283).

The Crown Puncknowle Fundraisers have made the BVSG joint beneficiaries of their fundraising this year. The next planned event is another great night out - A Race Night! at Portesham village hall on the evening of 23rd February. A coach will run from Burton Bradstock to Portesham via Puncknowle, for a modest fee, so no one needs to drive if they would rather not! Further details will appear on village notice boards, or phone any of the above numbers, or Mike at The Crown Inn, Puncknowle for more information on this event.

Steve Dove

Chairman BVSG

First Steps Parent and Toddler Group meets every Wednesday during term time (no session on Wednesday 13th February), at Long Bredy Village Hall from 10.00 o'clock to 12 o'clock. All pre-school children and their parents/carers are welcome to join us for activities, toys, coffee and chat. For further details contact:

Jo (Litton Cheney) ... or Julie (Puncknowle) 897178 or Lavinia (Long Bredy) 482397

BRIDE VALLEY YOUNG FARMERS CLUB holds a Whist Drive each month in Thorners School, Litton Cheney. The date of the next Whist Drive is Friday 8th February starting at 7.30 pm. Everyone welcome - even beginners. Anyone requiring transport from the local area please 'phone the secretary, Carolyn Buckland, on 01308- 897726.


The next Ladybirds meeting is on Wednesday 20th February (note not the second Wednesday) at the home of Julie Lewis, Green Barton, Swyre starting at 8 pm. Bring along your favourite books and enjoy other people's reading.

"On the Spot"

Your M.P., Dr. Oliver Letwin, will chair a forum and answer your questions at Shipton Gorge Village Hall on Friday 8th February at 6.00pm. Do come and put him "on the spot". Admission is free.




Hopefully we are now at least halfway through winter and so far it has been kind to us - still some days of sunshine and lingering sunsets and a few dark, damp cloudy days. As there are not so many jobs to do at the moment in the garden we can plan for the next few months, when we will be preparing the soil ready for planting again. By now you should have received your letter regarding fertilisers etc. and discounts. If you have not received them yet contact Brian Prentice at Litton Cheney and place your order immediately.

At the time of writing we had not yet had the January meeting when our speaker, Mr. David Hitchcock of the Three Counties Nursery, planned to talk on "Winning 10 Gold Medals at Chelsea"; an awesome feat which no doubt this will prove interesting. The February Meeting is to be on Monday 11th February at 7.30.p.m. when our speaker will be Mr. Allan Eason with a Garden Quiz and slides. As usual there will be the competition for the best you have produced of "whatever", with a small prize - nothing serious - just fun!

Nancy and the Committee look forward to seeing you at our Meetings held as usual in Thorner's School, Litton Cheney.

Norma Millard Club Secretary (tel. 897774)


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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 17th February Nursing Homes for Retired Clergy and their Widows.

The next Tiny Tots / Pram Service will be held on Friday 1st February at 11.00 am.

The next Healing Services at St Mary's will be held on Mondays 18th February and 4th March at 7.00 pm.

The Parochial Church Council next meets on Monday 11th February at 7.00 pm.


Wedding 15th December Christopher McConnell and Sarah Cooper

Funerals 12th December Grace M. Gazeley

14th December Leo Clynes

14th December W. Joyce Inwood

20th December R. Benjamin Dean

21st December Dorothea (Ro) M. Higgs

3rd January Margaret (Peggy) E. S. Cracroft

14th January William Miller

Burial of Ashes 4th January F. Norman Foster

Carol Singing around the village on Monday 17th December raised £133 for The Children's Society. Thank you to all the singers, Derek and Val Parsons for the Mars bars, John and Doreen Crawford for their very welcome warm drinks, and for refreshments afterwards at the Rectory provided by Greta Heal.

Lent Lunches this year will be on Fridays 12 noon to 2 pm from the 15th February to 22nd March inclusive. If you can offer your home for one of the dates, and with helpers provide soup etc., please add your name to the list on the table in the south aisle, stating to which different charity you would like the proceeds to go. Venues will be listed in the weekly pewsheet and in the March Bride Valley News.

Pam Atkinson

Preparation of a new Church Electoral Roll In 2002, as in every sixth year, a completely new Electoral Roll has to be prepared in time for the Annual Parochial Church Meeting, which will be held on Monday 18th March 2002 at 7.30 pm. All church members on the existing roll, as well as new applicants for enrolment, must complete an application for enrolment form in order to be included on the new Roll. A supply of application forms is by the church door. Do please take one and return to our Electoral Roll Officer, Mr Maurice Ackland, one of the Churchwardens or post through the Rectory door.

The Annual Parochial Church Meeting takes place on Monday 18th March at 7.30 pm in church, for the election of Churchwardens and Parochial Church Councillors for the coming year, and to receive various annual reports. Every member on the Church Electoral Roll may attend and vote. I would like to see there as many as can possibly attend.

John Atkinson

St.Mary's Church Accounts for the year ended 31 December 2001 show that expenditure in the twelve months was £38,907 ( an average of £750 a week ) whilst annual income ( excluding interest ) was £32,437 ( an average of £624 a week ): an average shortfall of £126 a week.

In order to balance the books, £6,500 was taken from our reserves, designated previously as a contingency for repairs to the church fabric, thus continuing the trend of recent years.

Should the pattern continue, and there are no grounds for thinking otherwise, it should be recognised that St. Mary's will, in all probability, cease to meet its obligations within the next seven years.

Graham Rees.

Hon.Treasurer P.C.C.

Dorothea M. Higgs ( Ro )

A new horizon broke for Ro as she passed peacefully away on 13th December 2001.

I thank, most sincerely, the many friends who have given me so much help and encouragement during the past few weeks.

Here is one of the many tributes to Ro which I received and I think says so much..."our lives are poorer for losing her, but richer for knowing her".

Thank you all. Greta Barlow


Thank you to everyone who sent cards, congratulations and best wishes on the birth of our daughter, Maisie Alice ( 10 lbs 3oz ), on the 3rd January 2002.

Steve, Debbie, & Emily Attrill

Parish Council Meetings

Burton Bradstock Parish Council will meet on the following dates:

6th February

6th March

3rd April

8th May

5th June

I think I may have given the wrong dates in last month's BVN, apologies!

Fel Moore Parish Clerk (01308 459001)

The Children's Society

Below is the amount sent to Headquarters for 2001, sadly well below other years. This is mostly due to my not being able to have the large sales I used to hold and a very poor attendance at the Christingle Service. I will try harder next year! or better still, is there someone younger who could take on this worthy cause?

Many thanks to all the Box Holders for their continued and faithful support, and special thanks to everyone who came carol singing on a very cold evening, and last but not least, thanks to Pam and John for once again having us all back to the Rectory to warm up and host us with food and coffee.

August Sale £300.00

November Boxes £337.00

November Christingle £59.70

December Carol Singing £133.00

Village Society

An interesting illustrated talk about the New Forest was given to the Village Society on the 7th December by one of Britain's leading wildlife and landscape photographers, Mike Read.

He entertained a full capacity audience with a wonderful selection of slides showing the landscape and animals of the New Forest throughout the seasons of the year, as well as telling us about the history of the area.

He impressed on the audience the importance of the forest environment and how we should all be aware of our responsibilities to nature conservation in order to preserve the area for future generations.

P. Dutton

Burton Bradstock W.I.

Joan Dady, President, wished all members A Happy New Year at the afternoon January meeting and introduced Mrs Martin, a Blue Badge Guide, who gave an excellent talk with slides on 'The Life and Times of Thomas Hardy' - her own personal favourite being 'Trumpet Major' for its connection with Portesham where Mrs Martin and her husband run the Post Office. The vote of thanks was given by Nancy Bushell who told an amusing story relating to the filming of 'Tess of the D'Urbervilles'.

During the meeting Carol Lumley gave the most poignant tribute to the late Ro Higgs, our 98-year-old member, who had led such a full and exciting life.

In February the subject is an expedition titled 'Andes to Amazon', and on 11th February at least 12 members will enjoy a Water Colour Painting day with tutor. Jill Spinney (897835)


Your Parish Council is currently discussing how to mark The Queen's Golden Jubilee on the nominated day of Monday, 3rd June 2002. As it is one day only, we cannot undertake the type of festivities held to mark the Millennium.

Since the Post Office purchase will limit the funds available for the celebration, our ideas must bear this in mind.

We would appreciate your views, and enclosed is a leaflet for your completion and return to the Post Office by Friday, 15th February 2002.

Freddy Tame

I would like to thank everyone who sent cards, letters and messages of condolence to me and my family over the sad death of Frank.

We have been overwhelmed with kindness and sympathy, which helps so much at a time like this. Mary Bailey

Thank you

I would like to say thank you to everyone who supported my Blue Peter Sale last month. Thank you to the W.I. ladies who very kindly said I could use the hall for free for the sale. We raised £212 which has been sent to the 'Wheel Appeal' and if you watch Blue Peter you will have seen that minibuses have already been bought and delivered to groups all over the country who help the elderly get out and about. I would like to say a big thank you to Jessica and Lucy Haley who helped me with the sale and not forgetting our parents of course - Mr & Mrs Haley and my mum and dad, thanks! Jake Dove

Congratulations Jake, Jessica and Lucy on a great effort!

Burton Bradstock Computer Training

Local demand for training

Thank you to everyone that expressed an interest in community-based computer training by returning a questionnaire to us.

We have now analysed your responses and the demand breaks down as follows (by percentage of total number of individual respondents):

Gentle Introduction 40%

Basic computing 37%

E-mail 49%

Internet 59%

Databases 29%

Spreadsheets 17%

Web Design 13%

Higher level & other 21%

The final total does not come to 100% because a number of people expressed an interest in more than one course.

Courses available before Easter

Our first course, a 3 week course in Basic Computing will take place in the school hall of Burton Bradstock Primary School on Monday evenings from 6.45 - 8.45pm starting on 4th and finishing on 18th March. This course will be run on a trial basis using trainers from Weymouth College and will be operated on a first come, first served basis, with priority given to those who have helped us to assess the demand for training by completing a questionnaire. The cost of the first course will be £10 for the 3 week programme. You can request a place by e-mailing Karen Venn on or by telephoning 897094 on Mondays between 5.30 and 6.30pm or Wednesdays between 3.30 and 4.30pm.

Computer taster sessions will be available from LymeNet and can be held in your home if you can form a group of 4 people. Courses may also be held in other locations such as the Reading Room. If you are interested in a taster session, please contact LymeNet on 01297 444570 or e-mail

Free use of computers

We also wanted to remind you that the computer facilities in the Reading Room have access to the Internet and are available free of charge. They will obviously be a real asset to anyone without a computer at home who would like to practise computer skills and could also be of interest to anyone who would like to explore the Internet but would prefer to have some guidance and support whilst doing so. The computer facilities are supported by experienced Web surfers on Wednesday afternoons and Thursday evenings. If you would like to have a go on the Internet or improve your computer skills please book a session through the village Post Office.

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SHIPTON GORGE St Martin's Shipton Gorge

Village Correspondent: Mrs.Joy White


3 Gullivers Orchard Shipton Gorge




Funeral 20th December D. Elizabeth (Betty) Godfrey

Burial of Ashes 22nd December Sheila V. Flavell

The Parochial Church Council next meets on Wednesday 6th February at 7.30 pm at Cairnhill.

The Annual Parochial Church Meeting takes place on Wednesday 20th March at 7.30 pm in the Village Hall, for the election of Churchwardens and Parochial Church Councillors for the coming year, and to receive various annual reports. Every member on the Church Electoral Roll may attend and vote. I would like to see there as many as can possibly attend.

John Atkinson



An enthusiastic group gathered for Carol Singing in aid of Save the Children on an unusually dry and not too cold evening. They were warmly welcomed and well refreshed at the Epplestones (thank you Bee and John) with wine and mince pies before heading off once more. Thanks to the generosity of all involved, singers and householders alike, the fantastic sum of £105 was raised for Save the Children and was gratefully received. THANK YOU ALL.

Jo Warren




The church looked beautifully decorated for the Christmas services. Thank you to everyone involved in this, and for the gift of the Christmas tree and the erection (and subsequent demolition) thereof. Thank you also to Brian & Janet Lane for providing music over the festival and also the carol service choir.

Punch 'n Pies Once again, the Village Society and the PCC arranged the traditional aftermath to the carol service. Thank you to Brian Thompson for concocting the punch, - for the very adequate supply of mince pies provided by so many, and for all the help with serving and washing-up.


The PCC would like to have a small commemoration of H.M. the Queen's Golden Jubilee in St.Martin's Church, in the form of tapestry Kneelers.

For the Silver Jubilee, three of these were worked and are in the chancel. Illustrations of the suggested designs for the Golden Jubilee are shown on the church porch noticeboard. The kits cost £24.50 each, the funding for which could be raised by coffee mornings BUT we also need needlewomen (or men!).

Please let me have your views. Molly Roast (421654)


Mrs. Linda Buck of 10, Rosamond Avenue (Tel: 898278) has kindly offered to take on handling the bulk delivery of The Bride Valley News from the printers, as from late January. The various batches, will be delivered to the distributors, as in the past, but if you have any queries, please ring her.

Thank you for the various offers of help with this work, and thank you also to Geoff & Betty Shepherd who collect direct from Creeds the Printers each month. ( Their 'tour of duty' ends with the late February collection, but their replacements are Mr. & Mrs. Spencer-Smith of Burton Bradstock.)



Hopefully we shall find a volunteer to organise this event? Please contact 421654 or 898334 if you can help with this - the village hall has been booked!

MR & CG - Churchwardens




ENIGMA. Following the considerable success of our first film evening, in November 2001, Shipton Gorge Village Hall Trust is thrilled to host its second Moviola/Artsreach film show. The screening will be held on Wednesday 27th February commencing at 7.30 p.m. Tickets, as for "Chocolat", will be £3.50 and are available in advance from 01308 897547 or from the New Inn, Shipton Gorge or from any committee member.

"ENIGMA" is a superlative new British thriller, set among the codebreakers at Bletchley Park during World War II. The screenplay is by the world famous Tom Stoppard in cooperation with Robert Harris, the author of the original best selling novel. The film stars newcomer Dougray Scott as master codebreaker Tom Jericho, faced with the challenge of his life as the Nazis unexpectedly change their enigma code to threaten a huge transatlantic convoy and betrays the shocking truth ~ that there is a traitor at work inside the top secret establishment. An eminent supporting cast also includes Kate Winslett and Jeremy Northam, direction is by Michael Apted. The film will be presented in technicolour and stereophonic sound with a full supporting programme.

Join us for a splendid evening at your local cinema! Film classification 15.


A SECOND-HAND BOOK SALE will take place at Shipton Gorge Village Hall on Saturday 9th February 2002, at 2.00pm, in aid of hall funds. If you have any unwanted books, we will collect. Please ring Doric or Gerald Benselin on 897562.


A FRUGAL LENTEN LUNCH will be held at 15 Rockway, Shipton Gorge, on Wednesday 6th March, from 12-2pm in aid of the Pilsdon Community. Do come and meet your friends.




The senior citizens' Thursday Lunches at the New Inn have started, again the first one being Thursday 10th January 2002 and will be every other Thursday until the 28th March. If there is anyone who would like transport, or is not well and would like a lunch, please contact Sally Parker 897168 or Jill Parsons 897324.

May I take this opportunity to say a Big Thank You to John and Jean at the New Inn for the lovely meals and the support they have given over the last nine months. So on behalf of the Village Society and all the people that have enjoyed the meals and the company may I say once again Thank You Both Very Much from Sally Parker.

Mary George wishes to thank everybody most sincerely for their kindness and support during her illness. The messages, thoughts and prayers have been a tremendous help and she is most grateful.


Shipton Gorge 100 Club

Winners of the January Draw

£20 No. 26 Jim Grey

£10 No. 80 Mr.Lane


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Chilcombe Church




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SWYRE Holy Trinity Swyre

Village Correspondent: Mrs.Julie Lewis

4 Green Barton, Swyre

Dora Yeates R.I.P.

As we prepare to go to press, we were devastated to hear of Dora's sudden death in hospital on 6th January. We extend to her twin sister May, and all the Yeates family our deepest sympathy. Dora's is the third death in the Yeates family since last Easter, and we ask your prayers for May, Peter and Avril especially.

Wellie-boot Nativity

What an evening the 22nd December was in the barn! How cold it was outside, but how warming on the inside. It really was an unbelievable effort, a cast of 1000's or that is how it must have felt for Avril, but "didn't she do well?!" Separately I know that Avril is giving her thanks, but this is part of our thanks to her. Avril - you are continuing brilliantly the wonderful family tradition of a living Christian faith, serving your community and your family, thank you.

Anthony Ashwell

A Welly Boot Production - The Nativity

Last September I had an idea that it might be fun to work with a group of children over the Autumn to put together a Nativity play and perform it in a barn ... little did I know how this idea was to snowball! Saturday 22nd of December in the barn at Manor Farm Swyre is an evening that I, for one, will remember for ever. What a wonderful way to start Christmas for so many people! The children excelled themselves... the Bride Valley has bred much talent! The number in the audience was staggering; the barn was packed to bursting with almost 250 people ... literally from floor to ceiling, an amazing sight! There was something about the setting and the story acted so well by our young people which brought home the real meaning of Christmas and just how cold it could be if you were born in a stable!

At this point it's really important to mention all the people who made it possible for this project to work; a huge thank you to the team of over fifteen adults who have supported me in numerous ways, as well as to Manor Farm who not only allowed us to invade the barn but also moved the straw for us to sit on! Right up to the last minute there are always little hitches which need ironing out (or not quite so little sometimes!). It would have been impossible without all this willing help and the support that we gained through prayer from so many people. This was such an important part of our success.... Thank you.

If you did come on the 22nd and think that you left anything in the barn do give me a ring as I still have some lost property. Finally the donations which we were so generously given, once costs had been covered, actually made over £100 pounds. This has been put back into the account for future use in similar projects with the young people and children in our villages ... so watch this space!

Avril Yeates (897235)


Sheila Body did a brilliant job and collected £55.35 for the Appeal from our village. Thanks to all who contributed. The amount raised for the District was £1585.62, which was excellent.



We would like to congratulate all the children and helpers, especially Avril Yeates on the outstanding performance by the Theatre, of their version of the Nativity Play.

The setting, Peter Yeates' barn, was ideal, with plenty of bales of hay for seating, a cold winters night, and a large audience of parents, friends and villagers.

The children's performance was superb and they seemed to enjoy every minute. The music beautifully played. A feast of mince pies, shortbread and hot mulled wine was supplied by another band of helpers and was enjoyed by all.

What a great start to Christmas. Thank you and well done to everyone involved.

Peter and Margaret May


More news on our hole! Peter returned this month and enlarged it a little and wrote the following on his findings so far:

"From a 1765 map there was the core of a farm with house and barns spread over the Green Barton site. The 1765 survey says a house of four bays, stone built and thatched. This is quite substantial and would be equivalent to one of the largest houses in Puncknowle (excluding the manor). It is quite evident that it is under 1-3 and explains the domestic nature of the pottery from No 1's garden.

The barn and stable are clearly under the gardens and parking area of 4-6 but may not extend as far back as the houses. The house and barn are also described in a lease of 1692 and I believe one of 1662. I wouldn't be surprised if we found that they had been built say 1590-1610. There were certainly one or two houses built new at the beginning of the 17th century. The pottery from the excavation is all 18th -19th century, both domestic and associated with dairying. This was becoming important in the village, relative to sheep, in the late 18th and first half of the 19th century. The exact date of demolition is not known. The barn was demolished down to ground level leaving just the foundations and areas of paving. The medieval pottery that has been found by residents does seem to concentrate at the back and down the hill."

Peter Northover

Peter returns in the New Year - hopefully more exciting news still to come!

The Millennium history of the village is still progressing, albeit slowly. Unfortunately, now that Ken Howard has left the village I am the only one working on it. It is hoped that we will have it finished by the time Peter Northover has finished his digging. However, now that we are uncovering more of the history of the village there are discrepancies to be sorted and this will all take time. Because of this I would be grateful if anyone interested in the history of the village that would like to help with research would contact me so I can speed everything up a little.

Julie Lewis



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Village Correspondent: Mrs Dorothy Barlow

Collingbourne, Hoopers Lane, Puncknowle

Telephone: (01308) 897761

New Matins

The P.C.C. has agreed that for a trial period of 6 months, our traditional Matins at 11.00am on the third Sunday of the month, is replaced by 'Puncknowle Prayer'. This is intended to be Puncknowle's 'own' Service with plenty of singing, a more informal style of sermon, and the whole in modern language. Though not a Family Service as such, all ages really are most welcome. We tried out the Service last month; it seems to be good.

Ash Wednesday 13th February

To mark the beginning of Lent, there will be a Service of Holy Communion, with the Imposition of Ashes, at 7.00pm.


David and Yvonne Buckland have moved into Hollybush, and we wish them every blessing in Puncknowle.

Anthony Ashwell


Puncknowle Art Group

A great time was had by all at the Christmas lunch meeting at The Crown. We are grateful to Doreen and her friends for a bit of pantomime and a few 'furry' stories. The whole year was full of excellent talks and we are very grateful to all those who gave us their precious time and expertise.

Feb. dates - 8th, 22nd .

Puncknowle & Swyre Social Evening This will be on Thursday 14th February at 7.30 p.m. in the Church Hall. Richard Edmond, the Dorset Jurassic Coast Officer, will talk, with slides, on Geotourism at England's first Natural World Heritage Site.

All are welcome. There will be a collection to cover expenses.

CAROL SINGING round the village raised £144 for the Children's Society Waves project in Weymouth which helps young people under 25 years. Sadly the need is great. Many thanks to all who contributed.

Ann Roberts


This will be held on Friday 8th March in the Church Hall -

an advance date for your diary. Further details will appear in the March B.V.N.


First of all I would like to welcome, Louis and Charlie, who joined us at the start of The Spring Term. Our numbers are filling up for sessions, if anyone with children who hopefully will want to start with us in the Summer Term; we would advise you to contact Carol on 01308 897771 or me [No. below].

We have in circulation our New Quiz, The Winter Warmer. These are on sale for £1 at the following places:- The Tourist Information Centres in Dorchester and Bridport, The Crown, Puncknowle, and The White Horse, Littton Cheney, at the moment.

Our Christmas party and Maria's leaving coincided on the last day of term. The session started around 10.30am and the children dressed up for their songs and carols. This was followed by the arrival at 11.30 am of Father Christmas, who gave the children their presents. The children then went on to have their Christmas Party, with kind contributions of food and drink from the parents. The parents watched the fun as they themselves tucked into a buffet with mulled wine. At the end of the party, some of the children who left us last year arrived to join in with the giving of gifts for Maria's farewell. Among other things, Maria received vouchers from the parents, flowers and chocolates from the Committee .

This year we are hoping to have an open morning again; this will probably take place on a Saturday, so anyone can attend and see what actually is required in running the playgroup. The date is to be arranged; more to follow.

Sue Talbot [ chairperson ] 01308482204

The Crown Puncknowle Fundraisers

The Crown Inn


Dorchester Dorset DT2 9BN


Telephone 01308 897711

Fax 01308 898282

The Crown Puncknowle Fundraisers

This year's presentation took place on the 11th December at the Crown Inn.

Thank you to all who attended. Our donations are given out throughout the year so only some of the following organisations had to wait until now for their money and we thank them for their patience and for making our presentation night such a success.

Bride Valley Scouts £1750.00

Bridport Lions 170.00

National Association for the Relief of Padgets Disease 50.00

National Osteoporosis Society 50.00

Joseph Weld Hospice 100.00

Mosterton Village Hall 20.00

RNLI 300.00

Long Bredy Village Hall 50.00

Dorset & Somerset Air Ambulance 3000.00

Bride Valley Fledglings 400.00

British Lung Foundation 150.00

Total £6040.00

This brings the total donated since 1996 to over £25,000. As ever this year we will be holding events to raise more money for good causes, the first of which will be a Race Night held at Portesham Village Hall on the 23rd February, for details and tickets please contact the Crown Inn on 01308 897711.

Thank you again for your continued support. Emma Foster (Treasurer)


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St Mary's Litton Cheney LITTON CHENEY

Village Correspondents:

Mrs. Gaynor Jones, 10 Manor Farm Close Tel.482517

Mrs. Elizabeth Kingston, 5 Manor Farm Close Tel.482384


From the Registers

Funeral 13th December 2001 Charles Alfred Samuel Brewster

At a quiet and dignified Service, we laid Charlie to rest. He will be much missed by Walter and his family.


Neill and Valerie Jeffrey have moved into Peace Cottage, 4 Baglake, and we wish them every blessing in Litton Cheney.

Anthony Ashwell

St Mary's Carol Service

Thank you to all (and that's an awful lot) who helped in any way to make the service a success. More candles are promised this year, and we hope it was enough to see by, as well as setting the scene. We even managed to enjoy it ourselves, thanks to your support and enthusiasm. Malcolm and Patricia Munro

Triangle Christmas Tree

A very big thank you to Priscilla Leslie-Smith for so kindly supplying the electricity for the lights on the tree and putting up with all the inconvenience of switching on and off at the right times. Also thanks to Eddy Fry for arranging to fell and donate a suitable tree and to members of the Parish Council for putting it up and taking it down.

Litton Cheney Village Society

The next meeting of the Society will be on February 19th, with a talk on Consumer Protection and Rights of the Customer, by a member of the Trading Standards Department of Dorset County Council. The meeting will be at Thorners School at 8.00 pm and all are very welcome to attend.

Well done to Daniel Brewster who achieved distinction in his recent Grade 2 French Horn exam and Rosanna who achieved distinction at Grade 5 Oboe.

We hope that Karin Adams continues to make good progress after her recent stay in hospital.

We welcome Andrew, Sharon and young Macauley Parrott to live at 6 Coombs Close and we hope the new residents at Numbers 4, 8 and 10 Baglake are settling into their new homes and we hope to welcome them properly next month.


A New Year greeting from President Elinor Frost opened the first meeting of 2002. Birthday posies were presented to Hilary Green and Phyllis White.

A very enjoyable Christmas party was recalled when members and visitors were entertained by Margaret Thomas, ably assisted by her projectionist Jackie Baker. Margaret recounted her travels to Europe and beyond, showing slides with commentary including some very amusing incidents on the way.

A hive of industry then began when Rosemary Pitcher instructed members on how to make her most attractive greeting cards. They were each given a kit to make their own card and, under her expertise, were soon engrossed in their task. She was warmly thanked by Dorothy Randal for a most enjoyable evening.

The next meeting will be at 7.30 pm. on 5th February at Long Bredy.


Visit the web site for the latest news.

The group meets at The White Horse Inn

at 8 o'clock on the first Monday of each month.

All welcome.


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St Peter's Long Bredy LONG BREDY

Village Correspondents: Mrs Elinor Frost


Tel ( 01308 ) 482269

From the Registers

Holy Baptism 16th December 2001 Benedict Robert Burley Schwinge

Ben was christened in the aftermath of a lively and sometimes noisy Christingle Service, but he remained beautifully placid. What a wonderful brother for Anna.

Anthony Ashwell


As I write this at the start of the New Year the lights of Long Bredy are being dismantled. How spectacular they have been: what a wonderful show for a small village. People came from far around to see the display.

Congratulations to Tom and Norma Foot on their recent Golden Wedding.

Our best wishes for a speedy recovery to Albert, hope to see you about on your crutches again soon.

Elinor Frost



Since writing the entry for the January issue my circumstances have changed and as a result I am no longer partaking in a gap year abroad. Thank you for all the support. The money I raised with the Christmas quiz will be given to CLIC. Sorry for any inconvenience.

Hannah Pitcher


A frugal lunch will be held at Langbride on Thursday the 14th of February at 12.45

Everyone will be welcome; the proceeds will help towards the restoration of the Church organ.



Advance Notice

A Jubilee flower festival will be held in St Peter's Church from June the 1st to the 4th.

This coincides with the Dorset Art Festival Exhibition at Langebride. We are hoping for plenty of visitors. A share will go to the Joseph Weld Hospice.





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LITTLEBREDY St Michael & All Angels Littlebredy

Ash Wednesday 13th February

To mark the beginning of Lent, there will be a Service of Holy Communion, with the Imposition of Ashes, at 10.00am.

Anthony Ashwell





There can be no doubt about our "headline item" for this month - the terrible fire which devastated Spring Cottage on the 3rd January, and its aftermath. There was of course much destruction of property, furniture and belongings, which no less than ten fire appliances could not prevent, but fortunately no damage to life and limb. Many of the Baxters' possessions were saved, thanks to the quick actions of their neighbours, and deficiencies of many kinds were rapidly made good, as the village characteristically rose to the occasion in their time of need. A letter of thanks from Siobhain and Simon appears separately in this issue, and its gratitude extends to a considerable number of good-hearted people, who will know who they are.

Another event which brought a number of large vehicles to the village was a happier one. Bernard and Val Fry have sent away nearly 100 surplus cattle (calves, heifers and milkers) - marooned at Foxholes Farm since the outbreak of Foot and Mouth Disease and all the restrictions on livestock movements it entailed - to restock a devastated farm near Carlisle from scratch, now that the restrictions are lifted. It is good to think that part of the "Littlebredy Herd" is bringing new life and encouragement to a resilient farmer in the north of England, whose enormous lorries manoeuvred their way through the village to collect them in December, and we wish all success and good luck to Mr. & Mrs. Westmoreland in their renewed farming enterprise.

We bid farewell to Chris and Andrea Worsfold at the end of January. Their stay at Littlebride was always going to be temporary, and our good wishes go with them as they move away.


Thank You

As I am sure everyone is aware, on Thursday 3rd January we unfortunately suffered an electrical fire, which resulted in great loss to our family. We would like to take this opportunity to thank those of you who helped to remove personal possessions and gave support during and after the event. Many, many people have given items of clothing and furniture to us, and we would like to express our greatest thanks.

Our deepest gratitude goes to Vinnie, Angie, Melissa and Tim at No. 2, Riverside Cottages, for allowing us to stay with them at such short notice! Our new address is at No. 1, next door to them, and our phone number is as before.

Thank you to each and every one of you.

- Simon, Siobhain, Nathan and Kieran Baxter.



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The Editors would like to thank all those who have helped them out

in so many ways in the production of both this edition and several previous ones: in their present situation, without this kind support,it

would have been difficult to meet "deadlines".

Editors: John & Susan Paul Windy Gap Shipton Lane Burton Bradstock DT6 4NQ