Archive 2004
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At the Parish Council January 2005
A sub committee was appointed to investigate the feasibility of making a car park and playing field opposite Pinchmill Hall in return for a housing development in the same area.
Vodaphone has received planning approval to erect a mobile aerial near the railway bridge at Moor End, Radwell.
The Parish Council has made a grant of £1000 towards the £7000 cost of installing a disable toilet in the village hall.
Concern was expressed about the power cables along the boundary of the proposed Radwell play area. The Council is to ask the power distribution company for guidance.
A sub committee is to be formed with a view to developing the current level of Christmas lighting in both villages.
Several Councillors complained about the state of footpaths and rights-of-way within Felmersham village.
A suggestion made by the Community Trust to finance and erect gates for parishioners to gain direct access to the parish burial ground was not approved by the Council. The proposed gates would be erected in memory of Margaret Alleway, the Trust's benefactor. 5/1/05

Felmersham Peal

On Saturday 8 January Ringers from Bedfordshire will ring a peal starting at 10am. It will take approximately 3 hours.
Boxing Day Walk
Fifty three people enjoyed the Boxing Day walk. A cloudless sky and frost under foot made ideal conditions for this very friendly and leisurely annual walk. 26/12/04
Photo by David Dawson (Felmersham resident 1976-81)

Michael John Burbidge 1944 - 2004
A private funeral was held at Bedford Crematorium on Tuesday 21 December 2004 followed by a Memorial Service at Felmersham Church attended by approximately 400 mourners.

 RNIB Coffee Morning
At a recent coffee morning, held at the home of Ken
 and Lorraine, £310 was raised for the RNIB. They both
 wish to thank all those who supported the event.

Rose Swailes - an obituary

Meridian on Radwell Track

The photograph shows a new Midland Mainline's Class 222 Meridian crossing the Ouse at Radwell. The Meridian order is for sixteen four-car units and seven nine-car units which will run between London St Pancras and the East Midlands and South Yorkshire. The first two units were delivered in May. They have a top speed of 125 mph and will replace the existing fleet of Turbostar trains.
The diesel-electric units are built by Bombardier Transportation at Bruges, Belgium and when completed they are loco-hauled via the Channel tunnel to the UK.  24/12/04

New Church Notice Board
St Mary's Church has been presented with a new notice board donated by the family of Richard (Dick) Aitken in whose memory it is dedicated.
Dick was a local person and at one time was treasurer to St Mary's Church Council. 
See Obituaries.

The notice board is made from oak by D Young, Co. Durham, a new joinery business. 19/10/04

Ringers Change Ring
The Peterborough Diocesan Guild of Church Bellringers will be visiting St. Mary's on Saturday 16th October from 10am to 12-00 for a special practice and not 23rd as reported in Ouse News.
Also to celebrate the baptism of three of the vicar's grandchildren, Rushden ringers will be ringing on Sunday 31st October at 3 pm.

Sharnbrook All Stars Junior Netball Club

Sharnbrook Upper School hosts the Sharnbrook All Stars Junior Netball Club for girls in Years 7 & 8. Starts in Sept 2004 every Friday evening from 5pm t0 6.30pm. Prospective new members please contact: Sarah Gee, Club Coach and Organiser, phone 01234 709113 or mobile: 0777 3333 449

Work has Started on School Extension
Work has started on the new extension for Pinchmill Lower School. Two existing classrooms are being extended and a new art and library facility will adjoin the hall on the south side. Southern access to the hall will be via a new entrance lobby. 22/8/04
Fred is Champion

Fred Turner from Radwell was the winner of the Autumn Show Plate at the 7th Autumn Show held on 5 September in the Village Hall. Fred came away with 4 first, 3 second, and two third prises plus a highly commended. A close contender was Hilary Foot with 4 first, 2 second and two third prises. Many of the entry groups were well supported with a very high standard in the Craft and Hobby class. Fred is shown holding the Show plate and his highly commended piece of marquetry.
Thanks to Maggie Spoor and the committee for all their hard work and to the sponsors, Milton Ernest Garden Centre. 5/9/04  

Marriage of Tony Hulatt and Tracey Monaghan
On Saturday 17 July 2004 Tony and Tracey were married at St Mary's Church, Felmersham. Tony is a local person from Radwell.
Click here for more photos

Second Radwell Wedding

On Saturday 10 July Robert Day and Victoria Ebbage were married at St Mary's Church Felmersham

Iris Boyle
On Sunday 18 July 2004 Iris Boyles of Trinity Close passed away. Iris had lived in the village for most of her life.

Field Offered to Parish

The owner of a field in Collets Lane, Radwell has offered it to the parish for a peppercorn rent. The Parish Council are liaising with the owner over leasing and maintenance requirements. 8/7/04

Brownies Tree
Felmersham and Radwell Brownies has received permission to plant a tree on the Jubilee lawn. The Parish Council will provide a plaque.

Phone Mast at Radwell?
Vodaphone have made preliminary enquires regarding the erection of a mobile phone mast near Moor End, Radwell.

Pot Holes
When is a pot hole not a pot hole?
When it is less than 50mm deep! (Highways Dept Definition)

Open Garden Fund Raiser

A Felmersham garden was opened to the public Sunday June 13 in association with the National Gardens Scheme to raise money for charity. The photo by Paul Davis shows visitors enjoying afternoon tea. 14/6/04
Pinchmill School Extension
During the school summer holidays Pinchmill Lower School plans to extend. Two existing classrooms will be extended and a new art and library facility will adjoin the hall on the south side. Southern access to the hall will be via a new entrance lobby.
This year Pinchmill School celebrates its thirtieth anniversary. It was built as a joint provision facility in partnership with the parish to additionally be used as a Village Hall and Committee Room with the parish contributing to the building costs. In the subsequent years the Village Hall Committee has extended the Committee Room and provided an additional storage room. 10/6/04

Pinchmill School Parking Solution

The Council are to install a Grasscrete (perforated concrete) lay-by alongside the Old Road to the East of the school entrance. Bollards are also to be installed near the entrance. The appearance of the lay-by will be similar to the off street parking area next to The High Road.
This solution will be welcomed by those who during the winter months park their cars on a very muddy grass verge. However it will only accommodate approximately 4 cars and consequently will not fully address the parking problem. 6/6/04

Cricket Pavilion Razed

Photo: Paul Davis

Felmersham Cricket Club lost their pavilion when it was completely destroyed by fire early Saturday morning 8 May 2004. The Cricket Club stopped using the pavilion two seasons ago when they started sharing the cricket facilities at Pavenham.

None-the-less it was sad to see a part of Felmersham's sporting history going up in flames.9/05/04
Work has Started on the Repair of the Church Floor
Work has started on the general repair and levelling of the floor in St Mary's Church. The intention is to improve safety, remove trip hazards and provide handicap access. A workman is shown installing concrete beams across the boiler pit prior to capping it with flag stones. The boiler pit is situated between the choir stalls and has been
a safety concern for a number of years. When work is completed it is intended to have no carpeting in the aisles. 5/5/04

New Flower Arranging Club
A new Flower Arranging Group has recently started. Details

New Church Warden

At the recent church AGM Sally Carr and Paul Keeble were elected Churchwardens for the next 12 months. Paul replaced Ken Shrimpton who stood down after 12 years in post. Stephen Hill reported that the accounts for 2003 showed a small positive balance. In previous years the accounts had shown a deficit with money being taken from reserves to balance the account.

Sunflower Competition 2004  

My Sunflower by Rebecca    17/4/04
There are currently 27 entrants for this years Sun- Flower Competition. There is still time to register (782898), but hurry because seeds should be planted about now.
One of the entrants, Rebecca (age 4), has drawn this picture of her sunflowers.
The tallest flower will be judged on the Sunday 4 July at Adina. There is also a Scarecrow competition.
Sunflower Link

New Girlguiding President
Margery Evers from Felmersham has been appointed President of Ouse Meadows District for the UK Girlguiding. Margery has been associated with guiding for over 25 years and the appointment recognises her commitment to local guiding and the various units within the District wish her well in this new role. 9/4/04

Stolen Goods Found

Miscellaneous plants and tools have been found. If anyone has had these items stolen then please claim them by emailing the Webmaster. 5/5/04

New Recycling Scheme for Parish

From October 2004 a new green bag for garden waste is being introduced by the Borough Council. The green bag and the present orange bag will be collected on alternate weeks. The black wheelie bins will still be collected weekly. 6/4/04
Issues Raised by the Public at the Parish Council AGM
The state of Carlton Road was highlighted at the AGM and in particular the overhanging trees at the entrance to the village forcing traffic to mount the verges. The footpath from Hensmans Close to the cricket field needs attention, Gullies near the church and the Jubilee Lawn are blocked. "Surely in the C21 its not asking too much for all telephone wires to new properties to be buried underground." On a lighter note, a parish councillor thought, after attending a county meeting, that 46.7% of statistics were made up!  6/4/04

Top School

David Bell, Chief Inspector of Schools in England, made special mention of Lincroft Middle School in his (National) annual report published on 4 February 2004. He praised the school for its academic excellence. 8/2/04
Grapevine Comment: Pinchmill Lower School's ranking in the top 5% of Lower Schools in the country and the high regard within the county for Sharnbrook Upper School and Sixth Form, together with Lincroft's stated excellence, means that Felmersham and Radwell children receive a first-rate state education. Small wonder parents wish to live in the area!

The family of Dick Aitken wish to thank all those who kindly donated a total of £810 to the Royal Marsden Cancer Campaign and the Primrose Appeal.
Preschool Open Day

Preschool recently held an Open Day to show parishioners their proposed plan to use a portacabin.
Fundraising is seen as one of the main obstacles and the organisers were seeking positive feedback and suggestions in this regard. The Open Day also gave an opportunity to raise questions and concerns about the project. The event was well attended. 24/1.04

Sid will visit the Parish
The Parish Council will shortly be borrowing SID (Speed Indicator Device) in an effort to reduce speeding through the parish. Big SID is mounted on a trailer and little SID is a portable device. As soon as members of the parish are trained, SID will be monitoring our speeds.  3/3/04

A Question of Speed

Stephen Potter the Council's expert on Traffic Management was invited to the March meeting of the Parish Council. Two issues were foremost in the minds of Parish Councillors: Motorists speeding through the two villages and parking problems at Pinchmill School.
Mr Potter stated that it was more often a question of inappropriate speeds rather than a question of breaking the speed limit. There was often a perception of speeding when in fact the motorist was driving within the limit. There did appear to be an element of truth in this statement. The parish clerk reported that the police had recently mounted three speed traps in the parish and had caught nobody speeding!
(Those of us in the stands suspected that this was a case of highway flashing!) Mr Potter promised to renew many of the road markings, including the zigzag lines outside the school, he would review the existing signs and give consideration to the suggestion of dog tooth markings on the approach to Felmersham bridge.
Mr Potter’s response to the Pinchmill parking problem was to introduce the meeting to the Pinchmill Integrated School Travel Plan. Parish Councillors were well aware of the plan - persuading mums and dads to double up on transport – and this was considered by the Parish Council to be a non-starter. What they wanted was a lay-by along the Old Road. (One suspects that the only way this will be achieved is for an outbreak of hardcore fly tipping.)  3/3/04

Northern Extension to Clapham By-pass

At a meeting of the County Council on the 11 December 2003 it was agreed that a new route continuing the Clapham bypass from where it ends now to the north of Milton Ernest through to the Sharnbrook roundabout via the road to Thurleigh Business Park (Thurleigh Airfield) should be explored. This route was proposed by the 5 local Parish Councils. The County Council felt the proposal had merit and should be explored further as to its engineering feasibility and as a basis for obtaining developer contributions. It was also agreed that Bedford Borough Council and the County Council together examine the current and potential impact of major development in the area and assess at what point such developments would trigger the need for a new road.

Vital Village Initiative Explained

Fifty-two people attended a public meeting on 25 February to hear a presentation given by the Parish Council on their Vital Village initiative. Cllr Peter Hartop outlined the objectives of the initiative and explained that if there was sufficient interest within the community then the project would be launched by a Steering Group. He stated it was essential that the Steering Group represented all sections of the Community. Details of the presentation are published on the Public Meeting link.
At the March Parish Council meeting Peter gave Councillors a break down of the statistics. He was disappointed with the attendance with only 8% of the parish attending of whom only five came from Radwell. He contrasted this with a similar meeting held at Harrold which attracted 20% of the population. 3/3/04

 Wartime Tramway at Radwell

Mike Benson has sent details of a 24ins gauge tramway that was used at a gravel pit near Radwell during the winter of 1940/41 to supply gravel for urgent Air Ministry construction work at Thurleigh Airfield. The tramway ran in a North Westerly direction for approx. 250 yards and the line forked into two short branches at the working faces. There was a passing loop about half way along the track. Two diesel locomotives were hired from Motor Rail of Bedford and there were two lots of six side-tipping wagons each carrying a cubic yard. The cart track to the former sand pits is still in use today with the entrance opposite New Road. More details (pdf file).  23/12/04

 Congratulations to Mark and Samantha Davis on the birth of their daughter, Charlotte Rachel.
Felmersham Lights Up
As part of the seasonal celebrations the Parish Council has erected lights on two of the trees by Felmersham bus shelter. 29/11/04
Felmersham Wedding
Camilla Saunders of Felmersham married Simon Manning at St Mary's Church, Felmersham on Saturday 20 November 2004. The candle lit service was conducted by the Rev David Mason.

The photograph shows the bride arriving at the church with her father.


Parish Council
Two copies of a community safety video are available to the parish. They are currently held by Paul Keeble the Radwell Homewatch Coordinator who will organise viewing in Radwell.
Vodaphone has applied for a phone mast at Radwell, the previous applicant has shelved their request.
Residents are requested not to park their cars over drains during November because the Borough Council propose cleaning then during the month.
Some Parish Councillors have perceived a need for road signs pointing to the school and village hall. Several members were concerned about the proliferation of road signs in the parish. The issue was unresolved.
The Council were advised that the Borough, as part of a cost cutting exercise, were considering reducing the number of times the bulk rubbish skips visit the parish.

Triple Celebration

The attempted quarter peal of Grandsire Triples by the Rushden band of ringers at St. Mary's on the afternoon of Oct. 31st was successfully rung in 49mins. This was to celebrate the baptism of Kate, David and Matthew, grandchildren of the priest-in-charge of St. Mary's, the Revd. David Mason. David was a former ringer at St. Mary's Rushden. 2/11/04

Fred Turner

Fred Turner - an Obituary

Radwell gets a Playing Field
A plot of land at the top of Moore End is now rented by the Parish Council. Councillors David Cook and Chris Poulter together with representatives from Radwell will form a committee to manage the field. After clearance and safety fencing the field will be used as a playing field. 5/11/04

St Nicholas Church, Chellington

Chellington Residential Youth Centre (St Nicholas church) is to be redeveloped and extended. The work is to start in October and will be completed in the summer of 2005. The centre will be used by youth and adult groups for residential and day use.
Congratulations to Felmersham Cricket
Felmersham Cricket Club is a founder member of The Bedford and District Cricket League. During the 2004 season the team came second in the First Division of the League. Next season (2005) the team will play in the Premier Division of the League. Felmersham Cricket Club details.  10/10/04

Happy Birthday - is six years old was first published on the internet in October 1998 and over the years it has grown into one of the "best village websites". Click here to view the first Front Page. is an experimental sister site using a brighter approach to web site design. 10/10/04

Concert Success

Approximately one hundred people attended the concert in Felmersham church given by the Wealden Consort from Kent. Under the direction of Cornelis Taekema the group sang a varied programme. £480 was raised for Cancer Research UK. Thanks to Pat Hartop and Lorraine Shrimpton who organised the event. 5/9/04

Busy Brownies

Brownies have started back for a very busy Autumn Term.
They are undertaking the Friend to Animals badge and at our first meeting we were lucky to have a trainee vet come and talk to the girls about pet care and management.
Also planned during this half term is a Circus Workshop badge, with Nigel Roder from Milton Keynes demonstrating numerous skills and a sponsored Scavenge Hunt for the Walk for the World badge.
The Unit is thriving and we are very pleased to welcome Carol Stork as a regular helper called Barn Owl.
Planting of the tree, which Brownies have purchased for the villages to celebrate 90 years of Brownies UK will take place in conjunction with the Parish Council.
We meet every Thursday during term time at Pinchmill Hall between 6 – 7.30 p.m. & should any girl aged 7 to 10 wish to join us, telephone 782134. ...more on Felmersham Brownies 14/9/04

Original Badges Fitted to New Sign

Left: Bedfordshire Coat of Arms.         Right: Festival of Brittan Logo

Radwell village sign has recently been replaced, however, the villagers wished to retain the original badges. Maxine Boswell of Radwell volunteered to restore them and the result is illustrated above. Thank you Maxine. 8/7/04

New Charitable Trust
Margaret Alleway bequeathed £230K to Felmersham & Radwell Community Care. In order to manage this large sum a Charitable Trust has been registered and the Trustees are inviting "written proposals from interested parishioners, to apply funds within the objectives of the Trust". More Details.... 22/7/04

Flower Arranging Club

Next Flower Arranging Club meeting will be in the autumn.
  Summer Fair  


The Village Hall Committee held a Summer Fair in the meadow off Memorial Lane on Sunday 18 July 2004. Despite the occasional heavy shower there was a good attendance. Tombola, face painting, fun, games and competitions were among the attractions.

Right: George, dressed for a typical English summer!

More photos and competition results


 Adam is new Sunflower Champion  Photos and Details.
Visitors studying the entries for the "Best Scarecrow Competition" at the Fourth Annual Sunflower Competition. Photos and Details

Pub Thatchwork

Radwell Swan receiving a new thatched ridge during recent renovation work.
The Swan is under new management and is fast becoming a popular dining venue.


Felmersham Stabbing
Two people were arrested following a stabbing incident at a party in Old Road, Felmersham on Saturday 19 June. One person was cautioned and the second was released without charge. One person needed hospital treatment. 27/6/04

Village Hall Costs Reviewed

AGM report: In consultation with the school the heating, lighting and water charges have been renegotiated. This unfortunately will lead to an increase in hiring fees. No hiring charges will be increased until the hall users have been fully consulted. After 30 years, the building is showing signs of age and as a consequence there will be a financial cost. There will be additional costs incurred so as to comply with the new disability regulations.
The committee has renewed the 10 year playing field lease with Bedfordia, this has given the committee the assurance they needed to invest in future improvements. A seating area in the playing field is being considered. Janet Cook was re-elected chairman for the coming year. 10/6/04

New Arrival

Paul & Glenda Davis are delighted to announce the arrival of their first grandchild. 30/5/05

Kath Booker - an Obituary

Puma Sighting?

Recently a parishioner, who can recognise all the indigenous wild life, reported what appeared to be a Puma crossing the the road near Felmersham Nature Reserve. It had cat like features but was at least three times bigger than a cat. In the recent past there have been two other reported sightings.


Gateway to Infinity
Phil Moon of Felmersham has combined his interest in astronomy with an equal interest in web page design to produce an outstanding web site on our solar system. To view this well designed and informative site click onto: (off line)

WI Photo Call
Felmersham and Radwell WI posed for a group photograph during the April 2004 meeting eighty years after a previous photograph taken in 1924 at the British Empire Exhibition. WI Photo  22/4/04

Parish Plan Update
The Felmersham and Radwell Parish Plan steering committee recently held their first meeting.
Click here for Project Update. 26/5/04

P3 Dawn Chorus Walk
Twenty five people assembled at 4.15am on Saturday 15 May for a dawn chorus walk in Felmersham Nature Reserve. The walk was led by an expert in birdsong and the photograph shows the group listening to a sedge warbler in a field of rape. Rape fields provide an environment rich in small insects and nesting suitable for the sedge warbler. 15/5/04  P3 Group Link
20,000th Visitor to

On the 22 April, 2004 notched up its 20,000th visitor, an average of 10 visitors a day over the 5½ years it has been online. Over that period the site has expanded to embrace many of the aspects of parish life and it has remained firmly independent. 28/4/04

Vital Village "Likes and Dislikes" Findings
The Vital Village Steering Committee has summarised the findings of a "Likes and Dislikes" exercise conducted at a recent Vital Village public meeting. Parishioners were asked to post their comments on what they liked or disliked about the parish.
Click here to view "likes and dislikes" summary.
Click here to view a summary of the Public Meeting

At the Parish Council meeting
A Litter Pick has been arranged for Saturday 27 March at 10.00 am and Sunday 28 March at 2.30 pm meeting at Felmersham church. Please support your Parish Council in their efforts to tidy up the parish.
Radwell's refurbished Festival of Britain sign will be fitted in the next few weeks. 3/3/04

Felmersham - a winter's view
Felmersham from Colworth Woods, Yelnow Lane. Photo: Peter Hartop 13/1/04

Local Woman to Climb Kilimanjaro
Choosing a beach with iced drinks or a cruise was not the holiday that Radwellian Jane Elliott-Poxon was looking for. She needed to show her family "that as I reach 50 I still have a pulse". Jane is joining a climbing expedition to climb Mount Kilimanjaro in June and at the same time raise money for Scope. (A national disability organisation whose focus is on people with cerebral palsy.) She is hoping to raise £3000.
Parish Litter Pick

A similar amount of rubbish was collected at Radwell

A disappointing number of parishioners turned up to help collect litter in the parish over the weekend 27/28 March. Never-the-less the result was two large piles of rubbish. Many thanks to those who helped and to Cllr Maggie Spoor for arranging the Litter Pick.
Comment: Dropping litter and dumping waste in the countryside is a real problem and we need to tackle it by being an example to others and by encouraging our children not to take part in this anti-social activity. 28/4/04

New Felmersham History Book Launched
A new Felmersham and Radwell local history book was launched on Saturday and Sunday 20 and 21 December 2003 in the village hall.  Author Ken Shrimpton took four years to research the book and he is shown here signing copies. Approximately 180 people attended the launch and many browsed the author's archives. Mulled wine and mince pies were served. The book has 212 pages, over a 100 illustrations (28 in colour) and at £12.95 is good value.
Book Details
 Photos: Peter Hartop

The Cricket Pavilion 1996
A request was made to the cricket club not to demolish the wrecked cricket pavilion so as to retain a stake in the cricket field. The Parish Council is applying for a portable skate board ramp to be installed during one week of the summer holidays. Cllr Spoor is to organise the annual spring litter pick in the parish. 7/1/04

Notes from the Parish Council
16 parishioners attended the January meeting. The fixed costs for 2004/5 were estimated to be £6,867 with Street Lighting, Insurance and Grass Cutting representing the largest expenditure. The parish precept was held at £8000 for the year 2004/5 with the contingency reserves estimated to be £6000.
Gullies and drains were cleaned in Felmersham on the 8 January. Bedfordshire salts 62% of the roads whilst Northants only salts 36%.

Sunset from Felmersham Bridge. Photograph by Peter Hartop 17/3/04

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