Gaydon Parish Magazine June 2020

index of magazines

Gaydon Events

Everything cancelled.  Events below are subject to notice of cancellation:      
Big Lunch                     Sun 19th July            Village Hall
Scarecrow Festival            September                Village Field
Apple Day                     October                  Village Hall
Christmas Lunch               Sun 6th December         Village Hall
Carols & Refreshments         Mon 21st December        Village Hall

Gaydon events are a bit of a non-event at the moment but we live in hope. The Big Lunch might be re-incarnated as the Big Picnic, while the Scarecrow Festival can clearly go ahead without much fear of infection.
Apple Day might be able to take place with some re-organisation; but the Christmas Lunch may have to be held on Zoom, with all of us eating in our own homes and raising a glass to each other on screen.
Christmas Carolling can return to the streets with the householders offering mince pies to the singers in the good old traditional way.
Where there's a will there's a way, so I'm sure we'll meet again one of these days... Ed.

Parish Council News

Parish Helpline
Requests to the helpline are less frequent now and whether that’s because we are adapting to a new way of doing things or more residents have connected and extended their own networks, please don’t hesitate to use the helpline if you need to, we are here to help.
VE Day
What a great way to celebrate the 75th anniversary in lockdown! Another lovely village event with an old Austin on the village green, a stunning green vintage bus on Church Road, lots of houses dressed up for the occasion, drawings from younger residents displayed in the Village Hall - a really nice occasion for everyone to enjoy while staying socially distant!
Housing Needs Survey
The housing needs survey is an integral part of planning for future housing requirements. It is an independently produced document, which gives an unbiased report of what type, size and tenure of housing is needed in the community. This is expected to be distributed in the near future. Please complete it as it will indicate what residents feel in relation to future development and how our village could
be shaped.
Old Play Area
This area is under care and management of Orbit Housing. The equipment will be removed soon.
Neighbourhood Plan
GPC are meeting consultants to progress the grant application.
The Field and New Play Area
GPC received 9 tender responses to the Gaydon Meadow Natural Play Area Tender and at our last meeting on 20 May a decision was made. We are working with the supplier to confirm a timeline and will be adhering to all Covid-19 regulations.
The Clock
The Church is currently ‘locked down’ (but still available online). Before its closure the clock was serviced but it appears that a complete overhaul might be required when circumstances allow. We hope it won’t be too long before we hear the sound of the clock chiming again.
Next Meeting
Next Meeting 2nd June 7.30pm.
Helpline: 07398 093023
Thank You and stay safe.

June Church Services

New Digital Church Daily 10.30am and 6pm via the All Saints’ Burton Dassett Church website
These services can also be accessed by phone. for more information or help please contact Rev. Nicki Chatterton.

The Vicar Writes:

Isn’t the human race remarkably adaptable! All over the world people are going about their daily lives in ways they never imagined even a few weeks ago - adapting to our changed circumstances during the lockdown.
As a Christian, I believe this ability to adapt is something God-given. Human creativity is a reflection of the creativity of God himself. It’s part of what it means to be made in the image of God as the book of Genesis describes us.
How have you been adapting? I’ve been adapting to a very different pattern of work, based at home rather than going out where people are. I’ve been phoning rather than seeing people face-to-face and, like many more, I have been learning some new tricks thanks to the Internet. I don’t think I’d heard of Zoom until a few weeks ago. Now, barely a day goes by without my taking part in a Zoom meeting.
Although we’ve been unable to gather together in our churches, we’ve been adapting to this setback by holding zoom services twice daily; which includes a twice-weekly Songs of Praise where all we do is sing! We’ve been praying together daily for all in our communities, our country and our world - not just prayers about COVID 19 but all that continues to go on around our world - remembering the joyful and good as well as the sad and bad.
We’ve also been able to use this time to catch up with each other in before- and after-service virtual chats - often with a coffee, tea or even a glass of wine in hand as we chat.
When the school is open I alternate with members of the church congregation in leading fortnightly assemblies for the Dassett C of E Primary school. When school (or should I say Home Schooling) resumed after the Easter Holiday I suddenly realised that I should have been leading a school assembly at the Dassett; it got me wondering if we could hold assemblies for the children during this time of isolation and home schooling.
I spoke to our church ministry team and, with the agreement of Miss Corry (the Head Teacher) I started to coordinate digital assemblies for the school children to access. It was interesting working through and around the safeguarding issues but that done, we had our first assembly on 5th May. The children’s parents ‘subscribe’ and are sent the link to the daily assembly and a recording is sent to all subscribers so that they can if they wish watch it at a different time. Apart from a short prayer, these assemblies are not ‘religious’ but follow the usual pattern including stories and songs. As I write this we are now into our second week of assemblies and it’s lovely to join with the children.
In addition to this we held a 1940’s Singalong on the 8th May Bank Holiday to commemorate the 75th anniversary of VE Day. There was great singing from all!
Well, as we look towards a loosening of our ‘lockdown’ I ask you all to continue to follow the isolation guidelines in order to safeguard each other from the virus. The community feeling and support has been great - long may it last. God bless you all - keep well and keep safe. Rev. Nicki
If you haven’t already done so, please join us at Digital Church. Text Rev Nicki on 07769871237 with your prayer requests.

St Francis of Assisi, Catholic Church, Kineton

We regret we have had to cancel all services until further notice. Parish Priest: Fr David Tams Phone 01608 685259 email:


About the length of Peter Crouch, apparently Is the required space between us But it would be unfair to expect him To supply the distance as we shop! So it’s marked A supermarket ‘stations of the cross’ We shuffle from spot to spot Doing the Covid Conga ‘Noli - me - tangere!’ Meditating on the changed world And whether to target Toilet rolls or flour first Just like sci-fi astronauts Our walks in space Take account of the The gravity of situations We’re drawn towards the Motherships of food and essentials Fearful of the “Alien” potency Within others Sharing space But, familiars and strangers And their smiles Given or received-Nervous or cheerful- Confirms our humanity And overrides our cellular selves Helping dissolve Unbridgeable spaces. T.H.

Nature Notes

P.S. from Madagascar...I have just remembered that I promised to add a little more about my trip to Madagascar...remote and then free of the virus or even electricity!
The natural history there is unique as a recent David Attenborough programme covered. I had worked on a conservation project there twenty years ago. This time, I explored the south coast and the unique Spiny forest. The plant life is like no other: from the amazing avenue of the Baobab trees to the dense rainforests of Huge tree ferns. The crows are black and white and the bright scarlet Hua birds are common amongst the rice terraces. The Zebu cattle are the staple multi-functional animal used for transport, ploughing, meat and milk. Very few people, if any, have cars and most of the housing is crumbling French colonial architecture of iron balconies and wooden fretwork. The Bara people of this area are tall, handsome and very likeable in the face of grinding poverty, few people living beyond forty years of age. The roads and infrastructure are also in a poor state.
My main focus in the "wet season' was to see butterflies and I witnessed the incredible migration of thousands of Urania Paradise moths, amazing Lemurs, huge Chameleons,and exotic snakes which are hunted by the large Malagasy Harrier-Hawk, a bit larger than our Buzzard.
It is like nowhere else in the world; the island is huge, as big as the UK, but that's where the similarity ends!
What was the most interesting thing I’ve brought back from the Red Island? A unique scarf made from the silk of spiders webs and dyed with Rosewood. Unique indeed! Bernard Price

Compton Verney

Tuesday 2nd June re-opening for Members, Local Pass Holders and Grounds Pass Holders. We look forward to welcoming you back to Compton Verney to enjoy the tranquillity of our parkland.
Grounds Pass: we are re-instating the special Grounds Pass which was introduced before lockdown, giving unlimited visits to our Park until Saturday 4 July. Adults £5 Children aged 0-18 years free. If you purchased a Grounds Pass before we closed, please continue to use it.
Stay safe: the safety of our visitors, staff and volunteers is our top priority and we’ve introduced some new guidelines to support this.
We recognise and thank you for your loyal support of our charity.

Village Shop

Special Arrangements during Coronavirus Crisis:
Orders can be telephoned to the shop on 641805 including Meat from Carpenters and Veg Boxes. Both are delivered on Tuesdays and Fridays and should be ordered on the morning of the day before.
N.B. There is an alteration to shop opening hours at the moment owing to social distancing and personal restrictions. Weekdays: 9am-1pm and 4pm-6pm. Saturdays: 9am-1pm.

Gaydon Parish Council Covid-19 Update

PARISH HELPLINE: 07398 093023
Gaydon Parish Council continues to reassure residents that there is a plan to pull together as a community and help to those who need it. The group of volunteers can be called on the number above.
To volunteer, text the parish helpline number above and state your name and the street you live on and you will be put on the WhatsApp group where tasks are posted and picked up. You can also email to offer your help.
If you are in need of medical support, please use in the first instance, call 111 or call the GP for a telephone consultation.
Volunteers should adhere to current public health advice.

Lockdown Working from Home

The sight of someone on-screen, working on a screen, has become familiar to us all as we watch television interviews, attend remote business meetings and join 'Zoom' socials with friends and family.
How lucky we are to be able to carry on with daily life and work by means of technology! We can communicate with each other, send for supplies, buy luxuries - whatever we like; just by sitting down at our computers or picking up our phones. Life is different under lockdown but for many of us it is not unbearable; indeed, it is rather like being on a long holiday for older people like me. It reminds me of the seemingly endless summer vacations when I was an undergraduate and the weather was always sunny like this lovely spring. In Gaydon, the old and extra-vulnerable have felt valued and cared-for through the kindness of the Volunteers, the Shop and the Parish Council; modern technology and old-fashioned neighbourliness hand in hand. JR


The Parish Council will be laying new gravel on the cemetery parking area. It had been planned for this spring until Covid19 put a spanner in the works and now it has been put off until safe to do, maybe in the autumn. SM
An Appreciation
It was heavenly in the cemetery this late May morning: freshly mown, scented pathways cutting swathes through the long meadow-grasses, buttercups and tall daisies; and the neat gravestones bathed in spring sunshine, memorials of so many loved and well-remembered Gaydon characters at rest beneath.

An Alarming Rate of Decline

In early summer the eaves of the bedroom usually fill with nesting swifts. There were eight pairs last year, at least. The noise takes a little adjusting to; and once they have fledged, adjusting back to the quiet takes a little while too.
This year both Bernard and I have observed a stillness in the air: they have reduced in number at an alarming rate.
You may say that they could be elsewhere, but they build their nests of clay which is abundant in this area. Once the nest is completed, they return each year to their familiar nesting spot - after all, it takes a long time to make.
The air is not filled with their high pitched calls; the whooshing is no more. I have just one nesting pair and having identified only five birds in total, I am saddened.
The climate change has shown itself in the sudden drop of swifts this year, with such an astonishing number gone. Already I can hear this year's fledglings and I hope that they are all healthy and will, in their turn, come back to nest in Gaydon. SN

Thank you to Farmers

Gaydonites are doing a lot of walking this spring, not only to exercise their dogs but also to keep themselves fit and in some cases, to try to reverse the effects of Lockdown (too many snacks, drinks and films).
It has been remarked that the footpaths are very clearly marked through the corn and that generous field-edges have been left for the benefit of both walkers and wildlife. This year, it really is a pleasure to walk south out of the village and round the farmland.

Allotment News in June

“This bud of love, by summer's ripening breath, 
May prove a beauteous flower when next we meet”  W.S.

The plots are now budding and burgeoning in profusion after a really sustained period of preparation, weeding and planting, but what we need to hasten ‘summer’s ripening breath’ is rainfall. Yes, a couple of months’ ago we were bemoaning the deluges and contemplating Ark building, but the fickleness of gardeners and growers is legendary. The ideal of - not too much, not too little - rain and sunshine is a dream of the kind only Goldilocks (temporarily) achieves.
Seeing the plots in relatively good order and greening merrily away, it’s easy to forget the sustained effort that has brought us to this point. The hard work, time and (no small amount of!) expenditure that allotmenteers have invested in their plots, can be all but invisible when taking in a passing impression at this time of year. The current ‘lockdown’ has allowed allotmenteers who would normally be constrained by work, travel or other pursuits, to use the time to tackle the challenges that the Gaydon soil can throw at us. The notorious clay and the subterranean ‘crops’ of Lias limestone clanging against trowel and shovel have had to be tamed for us to work many parts of the entire plot. This Janus-faced bonus of lockdown extra time means we might be ‘drawing’ in this particular competition, but a ‘win’ can only be achieved when all allotmenteers have had - at least - reasonably successful cropping. And then we play again next season.
An additional hazard, which (thankfully!) does not affect all of the plots, has been flooding. During the winter months the alignment of some areas meant that standing water stubbornly overwhelmed those affected areas for weeks at a time. On our own plot, we lost raspberries, blackcurrant and gooseberry bushes; sage, rosemary, lavender and other plants in an area comprising half of the plot. We contemplated quitting despite all the hard work and time invested. The only solution seemed to be the mountainous task of raising the level of this area. Fortunately, the good fortune that was the accumulated compost of Bernard and Debbie’s hen-house and bark chips from Kingston Grange has gone some way towards providing the material for the (backbreaking!) start of levelling-up of our plot. The ‘proof’ of that particular pudding will be in next winter’s rains. But, as we wait for summer, here’s to the “beauteous flower (and veg) when next we meet”.
(Thanks again (in particular to Paul and Adrian) to all those helping reduce the Swiss Alps of bark chips to East Anglia proportions over the past year and to Richard and David White for their provision and permission to access it.) T.H.