The Great British Spring Clean – Saturday 4th April 2020

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The Great British Spring Clean returns to Nether Heyford on Saturday 4th April 2020.

Following 2 successful annual spring clean-ups, the village is again gathering volunteers for a quick tidy up as part of the national Keep Britain Tidy “Great British Spring Clean” campaign which runs from 20th March to 13th April 2020.

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There are over 135,000 volunteers nationwide signed up to help in the 2020 Great British Spring Clean.

Everyone is welcome to volunteer and join the growing numbers of individuals and organisations who are already signed up to help this year, including regular contributors Nether Heyford Pre-School and new for 2020 a class from our Bliss Charity Primary School taking on the playing fields and the school “Eco Team” who taking on the village green.

On average the village spring clean collects between 30-50 bags of rubbish and helps our village look great ahead of the warmer months and the start of our annual village events.

If you would like to join us, please sign up and we can co-ordinate together the streets & areas with volunteers. Simply send us a message with your name and the street/area you would like to volunteer to clean up on Saturday 4th April between 9am and 5pm.

3 options to sign up:

EMAIL: Send an email to Heyford_Prattler@yahoo.co.uk

or

FACEBOOK: Send a message to us via our Facebook community page The Prattler or join the private Facebook group Nether Heyford Tidy Villagers

or

ONLINE: Sign up on the Great British Spring Clean website

 

#GBSpringClean 

 

 

 

 

 

Village Hall Events – The 60th Anniversary

2020 – The 60th Anniversary of Nether Heyford Village Hall

2020 Events:

Village Garage Sale – Sunday 19th April

Village Hall Fete – Saturday 20th June

Art Exhibition – Saturday 26th September

Anniversary Dance – Saturday 10th October

Yuletide Festival – TBC

Pantomime Cinderella – TBC – Late December (usually between
Boxing and Hogmanay.)

Alwyne Wilson – 01327 340803

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Village Hall – News – February 2020

First, a sad note
Chris Phillips, who has represented the Crafty Club on our Management Committee for some time, has decided to stand down. We want to record our warmest thanks to Chris for her enthusiastic and positive contributions to our meetings, and also her willing and active support at our various special events. We are going to miss her.

Pantomime : ‘Dick Whittington’
Another huge thank-you to the many volunteers who helped to make our latest traditional pantomime another great success. Once again we had a packed house, making all the generous contributions of time, effort and raffle prizes well worthwhile. The children and young people enthusiastically shared in the audience participation, although the adults certainly enjoyed themselves too. Our next pantomime by The Looking Glass Theatre will be ‘Cinderella’ at the end of the year. More information nearer the time.

Carols on the Green
A report on this appears elsewhere but it was interesting to note that, as with our Village Hall Fete in June, the weather before and on the day was awful. During our setting up it was pouring and we were all soaked – again. However, as with the Fete, amazingly the rain stopped in time, giving us a clear and relatively mild evening for the event.

The Heyford Singers, lead by their Director Mary Rice whose idea this was, are to be warmly congratulated on a successful first event. It looks as though Nether Heyford now has another traditional annual event on the Village Green.

Main Hall Floor
This has now been fully cleaned and restored and looks like a brand new floor, attracting many compliments from our users. Our thanks are due to Peter Squire for researching and arranging for this work to be done over the Christmas break.

Heating
The boiler which heats the kitchen side of the hall and rooms behind the stage has now been repaired and is working well. So no more complaints about being cold. However, we did receive a complaint during the pantomime that it was actually too hot – can’t win – but we continue to do our best.

Future plans
Several are in the pipeline and will be reported as and when appropriate. We want our village hall to be in prime condition for its 60th anniversary celebrations.

Alwyne Wilson – 01327 340803

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Parish Council – December 2019 Meeting

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The December meeting was held as normal on Monday 6th in the  Baptist Chapel Schoolroom.

Like all Council meetings it was open to the public.

Reports from the District and County Councillors: A report from Cllr Brown was read out, explaining that progress towards Unitary authorities was on hold due to the current political situation. He also gave details of NCC’s draft budget consultation. Cllr PB also referred to the uncertainty regarding the initiation of the Unitaries because of the General Election. He gave details of the refuse collections over the holiday period.

Public Participation: Mrs Matthews expressed concerns over the situation regarding flooding in Watery Lane and in support of the proposals of the highways department to alleviate it.

PCSO:  was felt to be doing a good job, and was visible and friendly.

Streetlights: Lights outside the Baptist Chapel, 15 watery lane, between Bliss Close and the Luddle, and Rolfe Cresc. all to be reported as out.

Roads and pavements: Poor condition generally. Conifers in South View had been cut.

The Green and Play Area: The Green was felt to be in good order. CK felt more trees were needed, AW wondered whether sponsoring would be popular. Play Area inspected and no problems.

Playing Fields: Netball Court had been started.

Trees: Churchyard and Green pollarding to be done in early New Year.

Allotments: Wildlife area progressing well. Pond being developed. 5 Allotments free.

Footpaths: Very muddy in the exceptionally wet weather.

Churchyard: Hedges trimmed, wall in good order.

Canal: MB reported the dog mess situation had improved.

Joint Burial Board: Fallon name plate details to be kept on file. 3 recent interments.

Youth Club: All going well. PCSO had visited to introduce himself.

Defibrillators: Both checked and in order.

To reconsider the situation regarding kerbs in Watery Lane. Discussion took place about the reasons for the problems in Watery Lane and about the proposed solutions from Highways, who recommended raising the dropped kerbs on the residential side of the road opposite the allotments, and dropping the kerb on the allotments side by 1 ½ – 2 inches over a 3 metre length. Highways have the funding to do the work. Resolved To support the Highways plan.
Resolved. To purchase a Sand Bin for placing in the area, and later to purchase sand and bags when it is installed.

To consider the provision of an office. This was a long term project, deferred for the present.

Church roof/Alarm. Council considered a contribution towards funding for a replacement steel roof, and an alarm system. It was felt an immediate contribution could be made, and further assistance given if required. Resolved. £1000 to be contributed towards the replacement roofing.

To consider removing the Memorial Green hedge. Resolved. To remove the hedge.

To consider signing the Armed Forces covenant. Resolved. To sign the covenant.

Grants Policy – to adopt. Deferred.

Neighbourhood Plan – No report on progress due to the illness of Mrs Corner.

To consider the recommendations of the Finance committee regarding the 2020/21 Precept. In light of the decisions at the meeting it was felt better to defer acceptance of the Finance Committee recommendations until January.

ACRE Village Awards 2020 – Resolved. To support the Village Hall Management application to be put in by Alwyne Wilson.

PDF of Full Minutes December 2019

Reporting Highway and Footpath Issues. The Clerk will report issues that Council is made aware of, but Council would encourage residents to use the FixMyStreet service to report issues themselves as there will then be no time lag and first-hand reports are almost always better than 2nd or 3rd hand reports. The service can be found here: www.fixmystreet.com 

It is easy to use; you can have your own account and can check up on any issues you have reported.

Council meetings take place on the first Monday of each month (unless there is a Bank Holiday)

Clerk to the Parish Council: Guy Ravine, c/o Old Dairy Farm, Upper Stowe, Weedon, Northamptonshire, NN7 4SH
Telephone: 07935 931787
Email: netherheyfordparishcouncil@gmail.com

Next Meeting
The next Parish Council meeting will be on the first Monday of the month at the Baptist Chapel Schoolroom at 7.30 pm and is, like all Parish Council meetings, open to all Parishioners.

For further useful information about Nether Heyford Parish Council and full contact details for the clerk and the councillors please visit our Nether Heyford Parish Council page.

Parish Council – November 2019 Meeting

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The November 4th meeting was held as normal in the  Baptist Chapel Schoolroom.

Like all Council meetings it was open to the public.

Flooding: We have been subject to heavy rain again, and the village has largely escaped the problems it has caused elsewhere in the County, and other parts of the Country. The lane between the Heyfords had to be closed for a time, and while that is inconvenient it is better to have the water there than elsewhere in the village.

Public Participation: Jo Dixon informed Council that the Tennis Club was fundraising towards a target, and had been applying to Sport England for funding, but that they wanted to deal with the owners of the land, so she asked Council whether they would accept contact from Sport England.

Mrs Reeves felt that Council should thank Mr Arnold for all his efforts on behalf of the village in regard to flood alleviation. The Chair thanked Mr Arnold on behalf of the Parish Council. Mr Arnold said that a great deal of work had been done, and that it had helped improve the situation regarding flooding.

Reports: Roads and pavements. The sign on Hillside road by the Green had been knocked over. Clerk to follow up regarding the signs that need painting.

The Green and Play Area: It was felt that the hedge on the Memorial Green should either be replanted or removed as it was in poor condition. Decision deferred to the next meeting.

It was resolved to allow the Heyford Singers to hold “Carols on the Green” on the Green in December, and resolved to give a grant towards expenses to the Heyford singers.

The Fair was supposed to be coming in September but had not done because of poor weather.

Playing Fields: It was resolved that Council to approach Sport England on behalf of
the Tennis Club, and to accept funding.

Trees: The hedge in the jitty between the Memorial Green and Church Street was in need of attention. It would be checked to see who owns it.

Allotments: A report on expenditure was given and additional funding requested in next years precept. Mr Thorneycroft had asked for assurances that schoolchildren would be allowed to enter the new playing field through the allotments and was concerned that a gate had been chained and padlocked. It was not clear who had done this. The hedge between the water pumping station and the allotments was in need of attention.

Canal: It was reported that volunteers were doing many minor jobs.

Youth Club: to seek Quotes for external lighting so children could stay outside longer.

Defibrillators: In good order.

Neighbourhood Plan: A report on expenditure was given and a request for additional funding made to cover work on site assessment. Any money left over would be returned.

The Housing Needs survey would be distributed shortly, with a return date of 29th November. Part 1 would be filled in by all, Part 2 would be for those who intended to move or downsize in the next 5 years.

Precept Meeting: will take place on November 28th and set the budget for the next
financial year. Village organisations wishing to apply for funding must apply by
November 25th at the latest.

Reporting Highway and Footpath Issues. The Clerk will report issues that Council is made aware of, but Council would encourage residents to use the FixMyStreet service to report issues themselves as there will then be no time lag and first-hand reports are almost always better than 2nd or 3rd hand reports. The service can be found here: www.fixmystreet.com 

It is easy to use; you can have your own account and can check up on any issues you have reported.

Council meetings take place on the first Monday of each month (unless there is a Bank Holiday)

Clerk to the Parish Council: Guy Ravine, c/o Old Dairy Farm, Upper Stowe, Weedon, Northamptonshire, NN7 4SH
Telephone: 07935 931787
Email: netherheyfordparishcouncil@gmail.com

Next Meeting
The next Parish Council meeting will be on the first Monday of the month at the Baptist Chapel Schoolroom at 7.30 pm and is, like all Parish Council meetings, open to all Parishioners.

For further useful information about Nether Heyford Parish Council and full contact details for the clerk and the councillors please visit our Nether Heyford Parish Council page.

The Story of Heyford (Extra): Growing up in Nether Heyford – Jenny Lewis

Growing up in Nether Heyford 

I was born at No 3 Furnace Lane in 1946 and lived there with my patents until 1969 when I got married. My father was the eldest of 7 children in the Collins family, living at ‘Wharf Farm’, Furnace Lane where my aunty still lives. Lower Heyford, as it was known then, changes its name in later years because the village was often mistaken for Lower and Upper Heyford in Oxfordshire, where the air force is based.

My mother originated from Harpole, and she met my father at the ‘Heyford Feast’ and got married, living in Heyford for the rest of their lives. Heyford Feast was a long standing event. It always fell on the 11th October each year and consisted of a large fair on the village green with Swing Boats, Carousels and Dodgem cars, not to mention Roll the Ball, Shooting and many other amusements. Also, lots of stalls selling candy floss, hot dogs mint humbugs etc. The fair was run by the Abbott and Billing families and over the years we got to know them well and while in the village, their children attended our local school. I went to Heyford School when I was five years old and was educated by Mr & Mrs Woods, then by Mr & Mrs Warr. The school bell was rung twice a day at 9.00am and 1.00pm just as it is today. Although other nearby villages had their own feast dates, Heyford was the largest because of our fabulous village green. People used to come from miles around and Tom Rolfe, who ran the Foresters Arms, opened up the club room for dancing which went on late into the night.

We also had a very good Youth Club which was held in the village hall. I was club secretary and my friend Lynn was treasurer. The fee was 2 old pennies per evening and we often had an awful job getting the money in. We had regular dances, often on a Friday night with live groups. People came from all the nearby villages and Northampton and they proved to be very popular. As club secretary, I had a hand in arranging these events.

I have many things I remember about life in the village. A lot of my leisure time was spent with my cousins on my grandmothers farm, especially in the school holidays. My dad’s youngest brother, Reg and his wife Joan, helped my Grandmother on the farm and lived there with their four children. In the school holidays, my two eldest cousins and I would help out ad played for hours in the hay barns and fished in the nearby canal. The railway line ran next to the farm and we would go into the signal box with the signalman and watch the trains going by. If we were lucky, he would let us pull the levers to change the signal.

Haymaking was always good fun too. My uncle would put the bales on his trailer which was then hitched up to the tractor and us children would stack them in neat rows, getting higher and higher as we went. Then we would sit on the top with my uncles towing the load back to the farm. (This would not be allowed nowadays).

My father, Arthur worked at the Northampton Power station as a fitter until he retired. He was one of the many volunteers who helped build the village hall, giving up their free time whenever they were able to.

Also, in the school holidays I would go with my mother fruit picking on Mr Beck’s farm. He would come into the village with his tractor and trailer to pick up the many helpers (mostly women) to take back to pick the fruit off his many currant bushes and other fruits. At the end of the day he would transport everyone back into the village. He lived on the large estate when New Creation farm is today.

When my parents married, they lived in a small rented house with no amenities, no running water and an outside toilet. One of my lasting memories of this, is having local men come round on a regular basis with the ‘Muck Cart’ to empty the bucket. (No such luxury of a flush toilet). On one occasion I was sitting on the toilet as a young child and they arrived to perform this delightful deed. I shouted through the door, “I haven’t finished yet”. Back came a very calm reply from one of the men, “It’s alright my duck, I can wait”.

Mr Faulkner, the baker delivered the loaves of bread to various houses. It was always in the evening as he baked the bread first in Northampton. He would sometimes stop and chat and on many occasions my mother used to say, “When is he coming as I want to go to bed”. Suddenly the kitchen door would open, and a hand and arm would appear clutching the bread, put it on a chair by the side of the door and say “Coo-Eee” and he was gone in a flash. Thus, he was known as Coo-Eee The Baker. At Christmas time, it was even later, as many customers gave him a drink or a mince pie, and he would be a little worse for wear when he arrived.

Eventually, my parents were able to buy the house we lived in together with the one next door, after John Earl (who owned the property) died. They had the two knocked into one and modernised, and it still stands today.

After I left school, I went to work at the Express Lift Co in the office. This is where I met my husband, Bob. We got married in 1969 in the Baptist Chapel and bought a new house in Rolfe Crescent, which is on the Wilson Estate where we had two children, Christopher and Anna. Twelve years later we moved to our present home in the centre of the village, where we live today. Both our children are now married, and we have four delightful grandchildren, two of which attend Heyford School. This makes them the fourth generation in my family to go there.

I have lots of fond memories of living in this wonderful village, which has grown tremendously over the years with the Village Green as its heart. School sports, football and cricket matches were played on the green before the arrival of the playing fields, which all the village folk would turn out to watch regularly. John Smith’s cows would often escape and go charging over the green with John running frantically behind. Some people now refer to the green today as the park, but to us oldies, it will always remain our beloved village green.

I hope you’ve enjoyed my little visit down memory lane as much as I have.

Jenny Lewis

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Letter published in The Prattler – December 2019

Village Hall – News – December 2019

Pantomime : Sunday 29th December at 2pm.
Our ‘Dick Whittington’ posters are now all distributed around the village (on a telegraph post near you) and our remaining tickets are going fast. They are £9 for adults and £3 for children under 11, and can be purchased from Richard on 01327 341044.

Christmas Decorations
By the time you read this, our village hall will be sporting its Christmas decorations, with thanks to our team of helpers.

Carols on the Green
This is a new venture by one of our regular user groups, the Heyford Singers, and will take place on the Village Green on Friday 20th December at 6.30pm. Full details are given elsewhere in this issue. However, knowing what the December weather might be like (remember the Fete in June?) we are on standby in case of: ‘If wet, in village hall’.

Website
This time last year we appealed for someone to help us restore our village hall website after it had been hacked. Thanks to Jez Wilson who volunteered to do this, our new website has now been in use for several months, attracting around 20 new hits each week and helping to generate additional bookings. So thanks again, Jez.

Main Hall Flooring
For many years the wooden flooring has been cared for with regular cleaning and polishing. Unfortunately, in recent years the floor has suffered some water damage, so it now needs a complete restoration. A specialist company will undertake the work, hopefully immediately before Christmas, during which time access to the main hall will be restricted until the new coating has dried out completely. Please check the website for the dates www.netherheyfordvillagehall.org.

Heating
Recently the radiators along the back wall of the hall have not been working adequately (or at all, at times), caused by some problems with the boiler in the storeroom. The cause has been identified but will require a lot of work to fix. Meanwhile, there is now a notice next to the boiler telling hirers how to deal with the problems.

Additional Storage
We have been awarded a grant from the Northants Community Foundation to fund a new external storage facility, which will release more internal storage space for our many regular user groups. This will probably be a self-build steel building which will be delivered as a ‘flat pack’. So many hours of Ikea-type fun lie ahead for our volunteers.

Alwyne Wilson

 

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