Gaydon Parish Magazine May 2012

index of magazines

This Month's Diary

Local Elections     Thurs 3rd 7am-10pm Village Hall
Jubilee Meeting     Fri 4th 7.30pm     Village Hall
Parish Council APM  Thurs 10th 7.30pm  Village Hall
Coffee Morning      Sat 12th 11am      Village Hall
Big Lunch           Sun 20th 1pm       Village Hall
Village Hall AGM    Mon 21st 7.30pm    Village Hall
Friendship Club     Tues 22nd 2.30pm   2 Anson Close
Pilates             Tuesdays 6.30pm    Village Hall
Mobile Library      Thursday 17th

Church Services in May

6th     9.00   Holy Communion BCP   Burton Dassett
       10.30   Holy Communion       Gaydon
       10.30   Morning Prayer       Fenny Compton
        6.00pm Evensong             Farnborough

13th    9.00   Holy Communion BCP   Farnborough
        9.00   Holy Communion       Gaydon
       10.30   Communion by extension at Northend
        6.00pm Evening Service      Burton Dassett

20th    9.00   Holy Communion       Farnborough
        9.00   Holy Communion BCP   Gaydon
       10.30   Family Service       Fenny Compton
       10.30   Holy Communion       Northend
        6.00pm Songs of Praise      Gaydon

27th    9.00   Holy Communion BCP   Fenny Compton
       10.30   Holy Communion       Farnborough
       10.30   Prayer and Praise    Gaydon
       10.30   Morning Prayer       Northend

Beating the Bounds

Great walks of Gaydon No 3: the Chadshunt Round 3.5 miles

This circular walk is a bit of a curate's egg as among its delights it includes a stretch of the B4451. It can be tackled clockwise or anti-clockwise but to get the boring bit out of the way first, this walk is described widdershins.

The first part of the walk covers the same ground as in 'Great Walks of Gaydon No 2: the Allotment Walk'. This has appeared several times already in the magazine so I just cover it briefly here.

Start in Church Lane at the back of the church. Walk West through the snickett, past the end of St Marks and climb over the stile at the end of the overgrown path. Head South for 120 yards, go through a gap in the hedge and cross the next field and the lane. Halfway across the next field turn right and walk to the road.

Walk about a mile along the road to Chadshunt, where it is worth a diversion to look in the churchyard; snowdrops or primroses according to season; interesting gravestones.

Turn left at the crossroads a bit further on and walk down Watery Lane.

In three quarters of a mile you will cross a bridge where the stream from Chadshunt Lake meets Piper's Brook, which runs from Piper's Spinney on Gaydon Hill. Walk on and cross over the old railway bridge to find a galvanised metal gate on your left. The waymark sign has fallen off but go through the quarter-gate.

The path is straight and well marked for the next half-mile. Cross the corner of a field, through a gap in the substantial hedge and ditch system and turn North. At the end of the hedge cross a stile into the small field beside Ireland Farm and go over the footbridge.

Cross the lane over a stile and head up the field towards the village. At the top of the field you should see the tops of the Old Vicarage pine trees. Head for the pines across an open field, cross the plank bridge, then another field.

A hundred yards further and you are back in the village on the footpath through Gaydon meadow behind the church.

Mobile Library

The Library will be in Gaydon on Thursday 17th. The van will be at the Telephone Box at 1.50-2.10pm and in St Marks Close at 2.15-2.35pm.

Friendship Club

This month we meet on Tuesday 22nd at 2.30pm at 2 Anson Close, by kind invitation of Mrs Josie Liddington.

Big Lunch

Gaydon Village Hall on Sunday 20 May at 1pm

All villagers are invited to join a communal Lunch Party to raise funds for the Jubilee Street Party on 2nd June.

It will be an American Buffet: everyone brings a plate of food to share.

Wine or soft drinks will be provided. Admission by donation at the door. Children free.


The flag on the Village Green was raised on Saturday 21 April to celebrate the 86th birthday of HM The Queen.

Jubilee Meeting

The next meeting to plan the celebrations on Saturday 2nd June will be held in the village hall on Friday 4 May at 7.30pm. Please come along if you are interested in helping with anything.

May In the Garden

Now winter is over and everything is brightening up, I have found some sad casualties. I am doing my best to try and look on it as an opportunity, not a tragedy that yet again, drought and frost together have done for much-treasured plants. The main victim has been a large, old and beautiful Smoke Bush, a real mainstay of the front garden and one of the few remaining shrubs planted by the previous owners. It had the perfect relationship with the apricot 'Buff Beauty' roses on one side, the golden Philadelphus behind and even more exquisite 'Sharifa Asma' shell pink roses on the other. Now we have a difficult decision - when to grub it out? What to replace it with? How to manage for five years until its replacement gets to a decent size?

Fortunately, I shared all this misery with a friend who suggested keeping it as a framework for climbers (thank you!). Why didn't I think of this? It is the obvious and right solution for such a stately old lady. So now, if you see the honeysuckle mounding over the top of the hedge, you will know the story behind it.

Elsewhere, I've got my fingers crossed that the Forest Pansy, a pretty little purple-leaved tree rescued from Wellesbourne market and now surrounded by peonies, is just sulking. I check the buds on it every day which is daft as it just means I have no idea if they are actually getting any bigger or not. Perhaps I'll just have to go and 'rescue' another.

Then we have 'Eddie's White Wonder', an exquisite flowering dogwood - a real Brad Pitt of the horticultural landscape. Only he isn't. Sadly, he's not even sulking. Definitely. I'll just have to dig him up and find something tougher that doesn't mind frost, drought, chicken excavations, dog patrols...if you find such a plant, let me know! At least the lace-leaved black elder has survived, despite dropping all its leaves in the drought last summer and drooping miserably. This means we shall have luscious pink elderflower cordial this month to keep hay fever at bay; and equally exquisite pink elderflower champagne, if we are blessed with a sunny month!

Jordan's Astonishing Car Wash

It's nearly summer and cars need washing! If you haven't the time and want someone else to do it, phone Jordan Labram on 07429 548624. Outside wash: £5; Inside clean: £4; Outside and Inside: £8. I am available most evenings and weekends so just give me a ring!

Nature Notes

"One swallow doesn't make a summer!" Last week I saw hundreds of Swallows and heard the Cuckoo, not however in Gaydon but in Northern Spain.

Zamora province is not the sunbaked land you would imagine. In fact for part of my time there it was colder than back home in the UK. One day we trudged through deep snow in the Mountains to see Ibex and Chamois and could look down on circling vultures and eagles below.

I had been visiting my friend who is restoring a Palacio - a Mediaeval palace - in the walled town of Ladesma. Looking down from the city walls to the winding river below, Otters were often seen and the Swallows in question were arriving from North Africa and sunning themselves on the rocks beneath. The Cuckoos were also heard in the early morning.

This part of Spain is rapidly depopulating, many villages are derelict and abandoned: Wolves, Bears and even the rare Spanish Lynx are returning to the vast tracts of evergreen (Holm) Oaks. It is a sad scenario of unemployment and move to the towns. The stunning mediaeval villages hold no attraction for the young, neither does farming or the countryside and there may be worse economic woes and cuts yet to come. That such a place is only a few hours away via Ryanair makes such a contrast.

One can enjoy superb organic food, see a huge variety of wildlife and visit historic places which make those in the the UK seem mundane; but the silence and sparse activity even in large towns is all too evident. Most Spaniards in this province seem to own at least three houses and with the rates being minimal there is, up to now, no incentive to sell at all. Dislike of the the countryside means you may stay at your place there a few times a year then the shutters are closed and you go back to a flat in Barcelona or Madrid. It certainly makes one appreciate country living in the UK.

I saw my first Spring species of butterfly yesterday (19th April), a female Orange-Tip (which does not have Orange tips as these are reserved for the males!) whilst digging my new allotment. En route, a rare sight of a Hedgehog road casualty: I saw another today on the Kineton Road - sad to suffer such a fate after surviving hibernation. Cowslips and Primroses in many places like the churchyard which is developing into a great conservation area; even early Bluebells; and much nesting activity and bird courtships to observe. Bernard Price

Plant Sale and Coffee Morning

This month's Coffee Morning is also a Plant Bring and Buy Sale and we hope that villagers will donate their surplus

bedding and vegetable plants. We meet in the Village Hall on Saturday 12 May at 11am. There will also be Coffee and a Raffle. All welcome!

Seasonal Recipe

Elderflower cordial
1.3 lt water    1.8kg granulated sugar      25 elderflower heads
2 lemons, sliced          65g citric acid

Dissolve the sugar completely in the water in a large saucepan over a low heat. Remove from the heat, add elderflowers, lemon slices and citric acid and cover. (A large plastic container is best for this.) Leave for 3 days, stirring once a day. Strain through a muslin, then bottle. Store in the fridge. Dilute to taste with water; serve with ice and lemon.

Plant Sale

Gardeners: please don't forget the plant sale on Saturday 12 May at 11am in the Village Hall.

Celebrating 350 years of the Book of Common Prayer

The year 2012 is not just about London hosting the Olympics or our Sovereign marking her Diamond Jubilee as Queen; it will also see the 350th anniversary of the Book of Common Prayer, the heart of our national church's worship.

The 1662 Prayer Book has been familiar to generations of men and women: for worship, baptisms, marriages and deaths. It is loved for its theology as much as for its wonderful language. Phrases from it have come into everyday use and have been quoted in literature: 'till death us do part', 'read, mark, learn and inwardly digest', 'peace in our time', 'ashes to ashes' - the list is long.

Together with the King James or Authorised Version of the Bible, the Book of Common Prayer has shaped the English language and inspired musical settings from some of the best church composers.

Still officially acknowledged as the standard of doctrine and worship in the Church of England, the Prayer Book has been under threat of being sidelined by contemporary alternatives; yet its services continue to be enjoyed daily in most of our cathedrals and weekly in many of our parish churches.

The Prayer Book Society plans a year of celebration for Archbishop Thomas Cranmer's magnificent volume.

Look at the Society's website for more details.

Gaydon Village Store

Can you help us please?

After almost 2 years of trading Gaydon Village Store has become established and is able to cover its overheads. This has only been achieved because of our loyal customers and a dedicated team of volunteers and committee members. The shop is able to offer competitive prices because we have low overheads but if we were to employ staff, our prices would have to increase to keep the shop open.

Unfortunately, we are now facing a serious problem in filling the rota with volunteers each week. The lack of a larger team of volunteers is placing additional pressure on existing volunteers and committee members.

If anyone can spare just one hour a week to help us, it could make all the difference. If you feel that you can help us (and please do not be scared of working in a shop!) pop in and have a chat with one of us, or leave your details and we will contact you. Please help us to keep our shop! Sue Roberts

Spring at Upton House and Gardens

Spring at Upton is a wonderful time for all. The Gardens are coming into blossom as the cherries and plums burst into white and pink.

Bluebell tours are held on Sunday the 13 May and have to be seen to be believed. The Hedgerow Herbalist Spring Walk on 25 May marks the end of spring and the beginning of summer (booking on 01296 670266).

For further details call Upton House and Gardens or for the full program of events go to:-

Beacon Bash

Monday 4 June on the Burton Dassett Hills

Music Festival with local live bands, Pig Roast, lighting of Beacon and Firework display. Free entry, all welcome! Look out for posters with all the details or contact Helen Clarke on 07796 115428 or email

Local Elections

Remember to vote in the Local Election on Thursday 3 May in the Village Hall! The hours of polling will be from 7am-10pm. Gaydon is in Kineton ward and the Candidates are Jacqueline Abbott (Lab); Rob Ballantyne (Green) and Alan Scorer (Cons).

Rogation Walk Saturday 19 May

This year there will be a walk round Gaydon as well as the walk from the hills down into Northend where the Rogation Day service will be held at 10.30am at the Chapel of Ease. Gaydon walkers should meet at St Giles' Church at 9am to beat the bounds of the village; then drive over to Northend afterwards in time for the service.

Messy Church

Messy Church will be at Fenny Compton Village Hall on Sunday 13 May from 3.30-5.30pm. As it is close to Pentecost, the theme will be fire, with craft activities followed by a short piece of worship and a simple tea. Everyone is welcome but all the children must be accompanied by an adult. If you have any questions, please contact Lesley Bosman on 01295 771171.

Shipston Home Nursing

Plant Sale
Saturday 12 May 10am-12 noon
Sheldon Bosley Hub, Pittway Avenue
Further details from Debbie Joss 01608 686932

Parish Council News

Play Area

Orbit Housing have been asked if they will address the issue of the loose tiles by the garages/play area.  This is a re-occuring problem and we have asked for a permanent fix. 

New Councillor

A resident has expressed an interest and the Parish Council are hoping to co-opt at the May meeting. 

District Council Elections

Thursday 3rd May in the Village Hall 7am-10pm. 


Could residents please ensure that hedges and plants are regularly trimmed away from the footways and roads.   

Next Meeting

Annual Parish Meeting on Thursday, 10th May at 7.30pm in the Village Hall.

The Big Read

Warwickshire Libraries and Information Service is bringing a day full of writers and poets to Stratford upon Avon School as part of the Warwickshire Big Spring Read on Saturday 12 May.

A wide range of celebrated writers and poets will be present. The event starts at 10am and is an opportunity to meet the writers, discuss their work and share ideas and inspiration.

Tickets can be booked through Kate Mackie on 01926 412 398 and are £5 each with a 'buy four get one free' offer.