PDF - Benson Bulletin



PDF - Benson Bulletin
Editor’s Column
Anne Fowler writes...
So here we are with the July/August double
issue, which means that we will be back again
in September.
I recently attended an ‘Open Farm Day’ where
Mr Philip Chaimberlain a local farmer and
landowner kindly took the time to show a party
of people around his farmland, and also around
the Agrivert site at Preston Crowmarsh. We
learned about the food waste anaerobic digester
and how organic waste is processed to become
agricultural fertilizer. This stops the waste
going to landfill where it would decompose
and produce greenhouse gasses. Instead this
process is controlled and the methane produced
is harvested to drive the machinery. We also
learnt that there is a lot of technology involved
in agriculture these days, from satellite imaging
of the crops to see where fertilizer should be
applied, to tractors guided by GPS to maintain
parallel lines within 5cms. Amazing. We
were then treated to tea and cakes in one of
Mr Chamberlains’ converted Crowmarsh
Battle Barns office units. I would like to thank
Mr Chamberlain for a most enjoyable and
informative afternoon.
Benson Library Opening Hours
Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday
9-12.30pm 2-5pm
Closed all day
9-12.30pm 2-5pm
Benson Outreach Post Office
Benson Parish Hall Pavilion
Opening Hours:
Tuesday 9.30 - 12.30 & 13.00 - 16.00
Wednesday 9.30 - 12.30
Thursday 9.30 - 12.30
Friday 9.30 - 12.30
Patronal Tea at the Old Vicarage on Sunday 26th
May when the Military Wives’ Choir from RAF
Benson sang. About 180 people attended. Photo
by kind permission of Revd John Burrell.
Benson Volunteer
For assistance with travel to/from
medical appointments
Office open Mon-Fri 9-11am
Call 01491 825992
to ask for help or to volunteer
Out of hours contacts:
Elizabeth 01491 838580 or
Eileen 01491 833664
email your letters/articles to
[email protected]
or deliver/send them to
Benson Parish Hall
Letters to the Editor-------------------------------- 2
Parish Council Report------------------------------ 6
Friends of Benson Library------------------------- 6
Benson Neighbourhood Plan---------------------- 8
Benson Christmas Street Fayre------------------- 8
Millstream Surgery-------------------------------- 10
Benson Waterfront--------------------------------- 12
PCSO Report -------------------------------------- 14
Down the Garden Path --------------------------- 16
Bird Spot ------------------------------------------- 18
Church Times -------------------------------------- 19
BEST------------------------------------------------- 20
Girlguiding Benson --------------------------------- 24
Ist Benson Scouts ----------------------------------- 26
School News --------------------------------------- 29
Local Clubs and Societies----------------------- 30
Classified Ads-------------------------------------- 36
Diary------------------------------------------------- 37
Volume 19 No 10
Published by
Benson Bulletin News Association
Printed by
NP Design & Print Ltd, Wallingford : 01491 824827
Letters to the Editor
Dear Editor,
Thank you to the Benson Bulletin for giving
us the opportunity to say a very big thank you
to the many people of Benson who welcomed
and supported us over the past three years.
We really got to meet some lovely people and
thoroughly enjoyed the time we spent with our
customers and wish Benson all the best for the
Warmest regards,
Petra & Richard Smith
Dear Editor
People have been asking us at Benson Library
whether our mower has broken down because
of the length of the grass at the front of the
We are actually trying to grow a perennial
wildflower meadow to help our suffering
pollinators, like the bumblebees. It will take
a couple of years for the grass to be replaced
by the many varieties of wildflowers that are
already growing and we will be adding to the
mix in the autumn. Hopefully it will then look
very beautiful during our long, hot summers
(?!). It will be cut down in September once the
flower seeds have set. If anyone would like to
talk to us about it then we are always happy to
see you in the library.
Hilary, Pat and Alison
Dear Editor,
This summer is a key time for the future of
our Library. Please read the FOBL June
Newsletter which will bring you up to date on
the substantial progress we have made over
the last few months. A detailed Report will be
given at our Annual Meeting on Thursday
4th July at 7.30pm at Benson Parish Hall
which will include details of where we have
got to in our negotiations with the County,
our proposals for the future of the Library and
for you to have your say. This is the meeting
where, with your approval, the future of the
Library will be decided, so please put the
date in your diaries now and come along.
George Verdon
Dear Anne,
Your readers may be interested to know that
Mr David Tyler of Coach Way Benson, who
sadly died last December, was posthumously
awarded the RNLI Gold Badge for 25 years
service to the RNLI. He had been fund raising,
firstly in North London, and then for 18 years
for the Wallingford branch.
His widow, Barbara, collected his award from
the Duke of Kent at a ceremony held at the
Barbican in London on 23rd May this year.
Yours faithfully,
Laurie Keys (Neighbour)
The Peal That Never Was
Some of you have asked me what happened
to the three hour Peal on the bells which
was due to take place on Wednesday 17th
This had been booked several months
before. However the band included some
who regularly ring at St Paul’s Cathedral
and at short notice they were asked to ring
on that day for Lady Thatcher’s funeral
The Peal at Benson was therefore postponed
and is now due to take place on Wednesday
3rd July starting at about 10.00am. I hope
you will enjoy listening to it.
John Tchighianoff
Fyfield Manor
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Email [email protected]
Chris Jones
General Building Work
Brickwork, Patios and Fencing
Interior & Exterior Decorating
Daytime: 07766 881004
Evening: 01235 819441
S G Locksmith Services
your friendly local locksmith
Lock Opening, Replacement or Repair
Key Cutting
Emergency Entry
Door Maintenance
Phone: Steve on 07788 595451
Painting, Plastering, Stonework,
Fencing, Patios, Repointing,
Carpentry, Garden Tidying Etc.
01865 772996
01865 400244
01869 337500
07711 443050
Telephone: 01865 891554
Mobile: 07885 538514
Benson Art Group Exhibition
Trisha Scott, writes ...
Friday 12 and Saturday 13 July 2013
Benson Art Group, started by Molly
Saunderson, is celebrating its 20th anniversary
this year with an exhibition of paintings from a
variety of local enthusiastic painters.
Works exhibited will be in a variety of media
including pastels, watercolour, oils, waterbased oils and acrylics. A range of topics is
covered but the main focus is on landscapes,
some of which are local and will therefore be
of interest to local people.
The exhibition will be held at the Millstream
Day Centre in pleasant surroundings in Benson
(signed from Brook Street and next to the
Medical Centre) and will take place on the
evening of Friday 12 July from 7.00 until
9.30pm and the morning of Saturday 13 July
from 10 am until 12.30.
Entrance at the door on Friday will be £2.50
per head which includes a catalogue of the
paintings on display, delicious nibbles and a
complimentary glass of wine or soft drink.
Admission on Saturday morning will be
50p and includes a catalogue, a cup of tea or
coffee and biscuit. There will be also be a raffle
and, if the weather allows, you will be able to
enjoy the Millstream’s most attractive garden.
Proceeds go to help the Millstream Day Centre
so please come to support us on what is always
an enjoyable evening.
Benson Brook
Cllr Dave Rushton, writes ...
I hope everyone likes the newly tidied up
Brook? On Saturday 13th April a small team
from the Environment Agency came along
and showed a very small group of volunteers
from the village what to do and how to do
it. Agrivert generously donated a skip to get
rid of the huge pile of green waste and yours
truly took a car load of rubbish up to the tip.
We covered about 200m along Brook St and
could have done more if there had been more
of us. My thanks to the 3 volunteers who did
spare 3 hours of their time and to the other two
who helped tidy up the next day. Thanks also
to those who couldn’t help on the day but who
do their bit already.
Hopefully by staying on top of the vegetation
we not only make the Brook look attractive,
but we remove any flooding danger from dead
trees etc when the water is high. Well done to
those who helped.
Cycling in the Benson Area
Sue Cooper & Claire Umbers, write...
We are working on a cycling strategy as part
of the Benson Neighbourhood Plan. This
involves looking at the present situation and
seeing what improvements might be carried
out. As we are on level ground, cycling within
the village is fairly easy and convenient but
watch out for potholes! Cycling on paths does
require care and consideration. Everyone,
pedestrians and cyclists, should look where
they are going and make allowances for other
While working on the strategy it has become
apparent that not all residents are aware of the
facilities which exist. Bike racks are provided
at the bus stop on the main road, at the doctors’
surgery, at the Parish Hall and in the village
centre outside the Pharmacy. There are also
several other locations in the village where
bikes can be propped or locked. So why not
try shopping in the village by bike rather than
by car sometimes? Do you think we need
more bike racks and if so, where?
If you are interested in cycling, whether as a
leisure activity or as a means of transport, and
you would like to know how we are getting
on with the strategy or contribute to it, please
contact us by email at [email protected]
or [email protected]
Bingo Night!
Every Tuesday in Benson Parish Hall
Do you enjoy a game of Bingo, if
so please come along on Tuesday
evenings in the Parish Hall 7.00pm
and it could lead to a Full House - Bingo!
Unit 10, Moorbrook Estate,
Didcot, OX11 7HP
Clutches, Shockers, Exhausts, Batteries
Engine Management Diagnostics etc.
Lease and Company Cars Maintained
FREE Courtesy Cars
FREE Collection and Delivery Service
AA & RAC Approved Garage
Discounted Class 4 cars &
Class 7 van MOTs
01235 818933
Est 1974 and formerly of
Parish Councillors Report
Cllr Jon Fowler, writes ...
Sunnyside Play Equipment
The Parish Council has recently installed a
new Cone Climber in the Sunnyside play area.
Below is a picture of the Recreation and Lands
Committee (or “Cone Heads” ☺) next to the
new equipment.
On a similar theme, the Rolling Barrel is
being replaced during the 1st week of July
(weather permitting) so the play area will
need to close for a couple of days whilst the
installation is undertaken.
Friends of Benson Library
Cllr Dave Rushton, writes ...
Benson Library – It’s Decision Time
Just after you receive this copy of the BB we
will have the Annual Meeting of the Friends
of Benson Library – and this is the most
important meeting we have had thus far.
The Trustees have finished their discussions
with the County Library Service and have
a plan to staff the library and maintain the
present opening hours. We think our plan is
viable and sustainable and we will be putting
the details to the meeting for approval.
However, it is now up to you to either
accept our plan for the future or not. Come
along to Benson Parish Hall at 7.30pm on
Thursday 4th July and make that decision.
Naturally I hope you will support all the hard
work that has been put in to get us to this
point, but you can only do this by turning
up and showing your support. Even better,
come along and sign up to be a Friend of the
Library if you’ve been putting it off.
Left to right Cllrs Dave Ollie, Dave Rushton,
Pat Peers, Elizabeth Leppard, Don Fletcher,
Bill Pattison, Jon Fowler.
Benson Veteran Cycle Rally
The Benson Veteran Cycle rally takes place
from Sunnyside on Sunday 7th July.
Milstream Toilet
The Parish Council has submitted a planning
application to re-build the Millstream Public
Toilet. The existing building is in a poor
state of repair and does not provide disabled
access. It is hoped to commence work
during the late Summer / early Autumn.
Watlington Road
Watlington Road will be closed on the 29th
July at Castle Square in order for repairs to
be undertaken.
Think back two years to that evening in the
Hall when hundreds of people turned up to
hear about the possible closure of the library.
Following the campaign to keep libraries
open - in which FOBL played a big part –
the County gave us 3 years to change to a
Community Library, and we are well into
that time now. Next year will see changes,
that is still the County’s policy, but we now
have a say in how things will change. There
is a way forward to keep this facility for
all the local communities, and we will be
explaining this on 4th July. However at
the end of the day it all depends on you the
public supporting us, so please come along
and show that support.
I hope to see you there –
Benson Parish Hall
4th July at 7.30pm
Dave Rushton
Chair, FOBL Trustees
Windmill Landscapes
(Thame based)
Your Local Landscaping Company
Established 1989
• Grass Cutting
• Turfing / Seeding
• Hedge Cutting
• Fencing - All Types
• Tree Work
• Patios
• Drives / Paths
• Gates - Wood / Metal
• Groundwork
Tel: 01844 279519
Freephone: 0800 783 7194
All types of fencing and gates
supplied and installed
Traditional French Polishing
Spray Finishing/Colour Matching
Staircases/Doors/Kitchen Worktops
Custom Made Wardrobes
Bookcases and any other
units made to fit
Any carpentry work
Please Contact Alan Wallis
for a free quotation
01491 834 886
07747 700740
Ring James (Chalgrove)
Tel: 01865 890436
Mob: 07796 966123
4 Ewelme Down Farm, Ewelme, OX10 6PQ
Benson Neighbourhood Plan
Anne Fowler, writes ...
Benson Christmas Street Fayre
Pat Hatch, writes ...
The Neighbourhood Plan has been launched
and work is underway. This is probably the
single most significant project for Benson
and we are all involved in the decision
about where to build the @125 new
houses allocated to Benson by SODC. The
production of the Neighbourhood Plan is
part of a process set out by SODC which will
ultimately result in a village referendum.
This process is closely regulated and must
engage the people living in this area in
the decision. If this process fails, SODC
will allocate the houses where they see fit.
This may not agree with where you would
prefer them to be built. Additionally the
plan gives the village an opportunity to
identify infrastructure and local facility
enhancements to Benson and the village
YES, that time is nearly here again. The
date you have been waiting for..
Therefore a number of committees have
been formed to undertake the work involved
as follows:
Housing chaired by Jon Fowler
Infrastructure chaired by George Craig
Marketing/PR chaired by Pete Eldridge
Information Research & Analysis chaired
by Patricia Baylis
Transport chaired by Dave Rushton
These committees will be meeting over
the consultation period and feeding
their information back to the village via
the Benson Bulletin and via the www.
bensonnp.wordpress.com website. When
the time comes, they will need input from
the parishioners so please keep an eye on
the BB and website for further updates.
In the meantime if you have any comments
you would like to make please feel free
to contact Pete Eldridge the Parish Clerk
at Benson Parish Hall (01491 825038 or
email: [email protected]).
Wednesday December 4th
So make a note in your diary now . It starts
at 5pm & finishes at a slightly earlier time
of 7.30 to allow us to clear up. There will
be stalls to buy presents either for someone
special or just something for yourself, the
shops will be open until 7.30. Those of you
who are hungry will find Fish ‘n Chips,
Burgers, Pizza’s, Hotdogs maybe Soup to
keep the cold at bay, also Coffee, Tea, Hot
Chocolate & maybe Mulled wine.
The usual visit from SANTA will take place
between 5:30pm and 6:30pm.
If you wish to book a stall please call me
on 07799381535 or email me [email protected]
hotmail.co.uk The cost of a stall this year is
£15 if you wish to have a stall you will need
to bring your own cover, tables and lighting.
Unfortunately the RAF are not able to assist
us with as much equipment as they have done
in the past, but we are very grateful for all the
help they have given us. Any persons wishing
to book a space please contact me and I will
give as much information as possible. We
very much look forward to seeing old faces
and new.
Unfortunately we are unable to allocate spaces
to TRADE STALLS we would very much
to keep this as a traditional CHRISTMAS
Looking forward to seeing each and every
one of you on the night. DONT FORGET
the 4th DECEMBER 5.00pm – 7.30pm.
email your letters/articles to
[email protected]
or deliver/send them to
Benson Parish Hall
Weddings &
Lunches & Teas
Pig Roasts & BBQs
Local Catering for your
Special Events
As Safe As Houses
Chiltern Domestic
24 hr Locksmiths
Est 1985
Tel: 01491 681526
•Locks Repaired
& Replaced
•UPVC Window
& Door
Servicing, Repairs and Sales
Washing Machines, Tumble
Dryers, Dishwashers,
Electric Hobs and Ovens
Fully Insured & CRB Checked
Call Nick on 07898 737884
and many more...
Childhood Memories
Eileen Manning, writes ...
How many people in Benson have actually
got a foot wet in the Brook?
There used to be a saying “you don’t belong
to Benson until you’ve fallen in the Brook”.
Did this come from the men coming out
of the Farmers Man or The Lamb & Flag
and being a bit tipsy for the walk over the
footbridges to the cottages in Brook Street?
As a child in the fifties the Brook was our
paddling pool and adventure playground.
We spent hours building dams or trying to
catch the little brook trout.
We also enjoyed going under the bridge
beneath Old London Road (now St Helen’s
Avenue). If you called and shouted, it had a
wonderful echo. What puzzled me was how
my Mother always knew that I’d been in the
Brook if told not to.
“Don’t go in the Brook today, try and keep
that dress clean”. “OK Mum”. But later,
when getting ready for bed it would be
“You’ve been in the Brook”, “Oh no Mum,
I didn’t”, “Yes, yes you did, a little bird told
How was she always right? It wasn’t until
years later we asked her about this, and was
told that if she found we had clean feet we’d
been in the Brook, but if they were dirty, we
Millstream Surgery
Fran Butler, writes ...
Mill Stream Surgery Patient Panel
Annual Meeting – Tuesday 9th July
7.30pm, at the surgery
Dr Peter Rose will give us an update on
screening programmes including future
developments – here is a taster.
How well informed are you about screening
for disease?
The NHS offers you a number of screening
tests which are designed to identify illnesses
before they cause a problem. These tests
cover chlamydia testing for young people,
screening tests for breast, cervical and
bowel cancer and we will soon offer testing
for memory loss in those over 60 with
diabetes, heart disease and strokes. So, an
interesting question for us is why lots of
people do not attend when invited for these
tests? For example, when screening for
bowel cancer was introduced (putting poo
on the magic toilet paper!) fewer than 50%
of people did the test. I wrote in the Benson
Bulletin about this and uptake increased to
60% but it has now dropped again to under
50% again.
There has been a lot of debate in the press
recently comparing benefits with harms
associated with mammography, and PSA
testing for prostate cancer. We are interested
in how people decide to make decisions to
attend for screening and whether we can help
to improve this decision making process.
We do not mind if people do not attend for
screening provided it is the right decision
for them based on the right information.
Here are a few facts:
If 10,000 women attend mammography
screening for 20 years from age 50:
• 681 breast cancers will be diagnosed
• 43 deaths from breast cancer will be
For every death prevented, 3 women would
be treated who would not have died from
breast cancer without treatment
For the PSA blood test for screening for
prostate cancer, if 1,000 men are screened
using the PSA test and followed for 11
• 1 death will be prevented
• 37 additional men would be treated for
prostate cancer who would not have died
from prostate cancer without treatment.
Has this whetted your appetite? What
information do you read to decide
whether you will respond to our invites?
Would you like to know more about how
screening programmes work and what new
developments are on the horizon? Then
come along to the Patient Panel Annual
Meeting on Tuesday 9th July, 7.30pm at the
surgery. All welcome.
Benson Waterfront
Peter Clarke, writes ...
Our former industrial waterfront
Those readers familiar with “Benson – A
Century for Change” will have read on
pages 25 & 26 of how the waterfront was,
before it became a swimming, boating and
cruiser station, let alone the site of one of
our most popular cafes which it is today.
It was therefore interesting for me to be
given recently a very old letter. Mrs Eva
Vokins was one of those “heroes” of our
book. So called because of the wealth of
information they could tell us about Benson’s
past. Sadly, she died on the 12th March this
year, and the letter came to light when her
effects were being sorted recently. It must
have been written before the end of the last
century, and I fear none of the personalities
are still with us. It came from Alf Gurney,
one of Benson’s former illustrious families.
He had retired to Cornwall. I repeat as
much of what he had to say as possible.
“In the 1920s coal (known as Coventry
Cobbles) was transported via the Oxford
Canal and River Thames by two barges
unloading at Benson Wharf. This was
done by wheel barrow over two planks. I
well remember in 1926 during the National
Strike, Pym Salter [Bridget Jones’ father]
diving in to collect the coal that had fallen
in the river.
At that time the road from Watlington
[today’s B4009] was still a dirt track. The
granite to improve the road came from
Nuneaton, transported by barge down
canals and the river. My father and brother
were responsible for transporting it from the
Wharf to the road works.
I still have in my possession an engraved
cup that was awarded in 1925 for the Benson
Boat Race. I was Cox for the winning crew,
who included sons of the Lock Keeper – a
Mr. Moffatt*.
I can also remember one cold winter about
that time. I and my pals rode our push bikes
on the frozen Thames to Shillingford Bridge
to have our photos* taken.”
Alf may have been referring to 1930, and
we have this photo in the Archive
*Would that we could recover these items!
Canons’ Room Hire
St Helen’s Church, Benson
Great venue for meetings, birthday parties or
gatherings of up to 50 people. Kitchen & facilities.
or Tel: 01491 832008
For One Year ­– By Post
An Excellent Present
Call Don Fletcher on 01491 838577
Registered Osteopath
Joint Pains
Rohan D Iswariah, D.O.
Ivy Cottage, Chapel
Benson OX10 6LU
Established 1970
by all
Moles. mice, rats, rabbits,
wasps and all other insects
Domestic Appliance Repair
For a prompt and efficient repair to your
Call Lee Carrington or
Peter Willis
Tel: 01491 835610
Mobile: 07970 010214
Tel: 01865 349007
No call out fee
PCSO Report
Here is the latest Benson and Berinsfield
neighbourhood update from Police Community
Support Officer (PCSO) Rebekah Kent and
PCSO Sarah Jones.
Local Priorities
The local priority for Benson is Burglary and
Attempted Burglary. The neighbourhood team
carry out high visibility patrols to help combat
and deter these incidents. We would urge all
home owners to make sure that properties
are left secure and items such as car keys and
valuables are not left in the view. Please report
anything which you feel is suspicious and may
be of interest to us.
Anti-social behaviour (ASB)
We have received complaints of ASB on the
High Street, Rivermead and the Mill Stream
car park areas of Benson. Flowers were
removed from plant pots and notice boards
damaged. A window of the Parish Hall has also
been damaged. If residents witness any further
ASB then please report the incidents to us with
a description of the offenders.
Parking is something that your neighbourhood
officers deal with on a day to day basis and we
rely on local residents to keep us informed of any
issues arising. We understand that inconsiderate
and illegal parking can both be frustrating and
dangerous and we will assess and deal with all
reports appropriately. Vehicles parked illegally
or causing an obstruction can be fined £30
by means of a fixed penalty notice. We have
received reports of inconsiderate parking in
Castle Square and Old London Road in Benson.
Vehicles have been obstructing pathways and
causing traffic to swerve into oncoming traffic.
If we witness a vehicle causing an obstruction
we may issue a £30 fixed penalty notice.
General Information/Observation Request
•11 May – criminal damage to vehicle,
Littleworth Road, Benson, a wing mirror was
knocked off a vehicle.
•14 May – criminal damage to a greenhouse,
Mill Lane, Benson.
Throughout this month there have been
many thefts of garden ornaments across the
neighbourhood and we have also had some
lead thefts. Inquiries are ongoing to identify the
offenders and we would urge any residents who
may have witnessed or have any information
regarding the incidents to call us.
If you have information you think may
be of use to us then please call on the
police nonemergency number 101. To call
anonymously with information about crime –
Crimestoppers 0800 555 111 or log on
to the Crimestoppers website – www.
Crime Information
Ewelme farms have reported a few incidents of
illegal hare coursing. This can cause
damage to crops and is a general annoyance for
farmers. We would urge anyone who witnesses
this to call and give us a direction of travel and a
description of the vehicle and people involved.
Have Your Say Meetings
Upcoming Have Your Say meetings are:
Monday 8th - Outside Village Shop, Burrows
Hill, Ewelme – 1100 – 1130
Friday 12th - Outside the Village Hall, A415,
Clifton Hampden – 1800 – 1830
Monday 22nd - The Lord Nelson Car Park,
Brightwell Baldwin – 1800 – 1830
Monday 29th – Outside the shops, High Street,
Benson – 1300 - 1330
Thursday 1st - Library Car park, Berinsfield
5.30pm – 6pm
Friday 9th – Outside Sixbells PH, Warborough
6pm – 6.30pm
Sunday 18th – Village Hall Car Park, Berrick
Salome – 6pm – 6.30pm
Tuesday 27th – The Village Green, High Street,
Culham 5.30pm – 6pm
These meetings are an ideal opportunity for
local residents to speak to their local police
officers and PCSOs about any local issues, no
appointment is necessary just turn up.
If you want any advice or would like to contact
the neighbourhood team you can call us on the
police non-emergency number 101 or email
[email protected]
thamesvalley.pnn.police.uk. Please note this
email address cannot be used to contact Thames
Valley Police to report crimes or for any urgent
matters. Alternatively you can visit the force
website at www.thamesvalley.police.uk
Computer Repairs, Virus Removal,
Computer Lessons for Beginners,
Set up Email, Broadband,
Wired & Wireless Networking
Call Russell on –
01491 838727 or 07770 934677
Email: [email protected]
Roll up, Roll up
Advance notice of Seasonal Flu
immunisation clinic
Saturday 19th October 2013
Venue: Mill Stream Surgery
The clinic will be by appointment,
bookable from September. Further
information to follow nearer the
Dance, drama & singing classes for
children aged 4+ Summer Dance &
Drama Workshops July 23-26th July
for 3+ year olds
Email: [email protected]
Tel: 01491 877205 Mob: 07956 176166
Down the Garden Path
Lynn Powell, writes ...
July: Digging the potatoes; a gentle boil
with a few sprigs of mint, a hint of butter
and what more could you ask for? The
question is which mint should you be using
for the potato pot?
There are 25 varieties of mint and the word
mint comes from the Latin Mentha or the
Greek Minthe, which is named after the
nymph who was transformed into a mint
plant. It flowers from July until early
autumn and is related to sages, rosemaries,
marjorams, basil and thymes. Most only
thrive in temperate regions, which probably
explains why it is so happy in Benson,
because of course it can be a bit of a thug,
so the recommendation is that to limit the
spread, you should sink a large bottomless
pot into at least 12 inches of ground, but
leaving at least 2 inches above ground level
to stop the roots escaping. Lift and divide
every few years and in late summer (late
July or August), cut back and apply a liquid
feed to rejuvenate. The advice is all very
well, but I don’t think it works, as having
tried a bottomless container, I can confirm
that the mint spreads everywhere! It can
be grown in a container, but if you do this,
apply a liquid feed every two weeks and
don’t let the pot dry out. Place the pot in
partial shade, but be warned that the roots
are likely to come out of the bottom and
find any crack or crevice and duly spread
to where you do not want it. I know this is
probably a job for the Undergardener, but it
is one, he or she, can do without!
It is the menthol which gives all mints
their typical taste and smell, simultaneously
cool and warming and is an antiseptic,
decongestant and analgesic compound think of toothpaste. Sowing from seed is
unreliable, so you need to find another
gardener, who is trying to contain it. Just
pull a piece out with the hairy roots and
you will be away. It does not need much
encouragement to thrive. Mint can be
damaged by mildew and rust, but that is
really only likely to be a problem, if you
have seriously managed to contain it..
But back to the original question - which
mint? You need 4 in the garden and if you
have feline friends, then you need a fifth.
Mentha Spicata has been a culinary mint
since Roman Times and it is this mint ie
Spearmint which is used to flavour chewing
gum, but you need it to make the mint sauce
or mint jelly to go with the roast lamb.
Mentha Suavealens or Apple mint is the one
you need for the potatoes. It has quite large
hairy leaves and is easy to get out of the pot
as it does not disintegrate and the smell as it
is cooking is wonderful.
Mentha Piperita or Peppermint is the one
you need for making teas or for medicinal
uses and there is nothing nicer on a hot
summer’s day than a glass of cold mint tea
with lots of ice and a sprig of mint left in.
You might not be doing that this summer,
but it is also the mint to add to the Pimm’s
and is the mint for the ice cube tray, to
freeze and keep for real treats in the winter
when the outside mint has died down for a
well earned rest.
Mentha Pulegium or Penny royal, otherwise
known as pudding grass because it is
added to black pudding and sausages, was
historically used to purify drinking water at
sea, but it is the best mint to use between
paving cracks for the wonderful smell,
which is released when you walk on it. It
is used to repel mice and insects and it sort
of works in a pot in the greenhouse when
you are trying to germinate peas or runner
beans. I say sort of because to get this really
to work, you need lots of pots and as it is not
happy being regularly watered, it becomes a
little difficult, when you need to water the
pots of peas and beans.
Nepeta Cataria is for your feline friends,
although there is nothing to stop you
using it for making tea. But they love the
nepetalactone isomers, so plant the catmint
where you are happy for the cats to go. That
way and with any luck they will stay off the
seed bed (throw garlic cloves on that, as
they hate the smell of garlic).
Wishing you all a very pleasant summer
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The Bird Spot
Tom Stevenson, writes...
And so this incredibly changeable weather
continues but at least we have had the odd
day of sun and warmth. I guess it will be
some time until the data is collated to assess
the success or otherwise of the breeding
season. So far I have seen plenty of signs
of success with adults feeding youngsters
all over the place. The only trouble is that
I have only seen very small families with
one or two young at most. Hopefully this
is just my observation and not widespread
though not all is lost as the fewer the chicks
the more food they tend to get and the
quicker they grow and are able to look after
themselves. It does mean a slightly harder
time for predators such as Sparrowhawks
but they are longer lived and the odd failed
breeding year is not so important.
There is still plenty of time for those birds
that have multi nesting attempts but please,
if you have tree work to do or hedges to
trim, either carefully check for nests before
starting or better still wait until later in the
year when all breeding has finished.
sandwiches with you make use of the picnic
bench down there.
On the mammal front – we have recently
taken delivery of 13 hedgehogs at the
Watercress Beds from Tiggywinkles. These
animals were nursed back to health by the
animal rescue centre and were ready for
release. I provide food and water for them
for the first few days and leave a night time
camera out to record their activities. I have
film of one apparently protecting its territory
or perhaps its food source by wrestling with
another though a third looked on being left
alone. No idea what is going on though it
is interesting and indicates that they have
settled in to their new home. Also the
camera has picked up a fox and a pair of
muntjac deer so far – fascinating stuff and
some available for view on my blog (http://
Email: [email protected]
Tel: 01491 836888
Mob: 07773251301
In spite of the conditions this spring the
flower meadow at Ewelme is generally
looking good though some areas are
suffering from lush grass growth which tends
to prevent the more delicate annual flowers
from germinating. Unfortunately the same
is true of the wild flower areas on Aldridge
Triangle and outside the library though
they are both showing promising signs and
proving an attraction to pollinating insects.
In fact the only 7 spot ladybirds I have seen
this year were outside the library and a pretty
moth, a Scalloped Hazel, was hiding on the
Aldridge Triangle area. I hope those who
think these areas look scruffy will be patient
as it takes some time to establish wildflower
areas and the prize is a wealth of pollinating
insects which have been severely depleted
in recent years. Just pop in to the Millbrook
mead nature reserve to get an idea of what I
hope it will eventually look like – take your
The Church of England Parish of Benson
St Helen’s Church
Vicar: The Revd John Burrell tel: 01491 832008
email: [email protected]
Associate Priest: The Revd Jean Travis tel: 01491
838713 Curate: The Revd David Gifford tel:
01865 343309 Churchwardens:
Barbara Smart tel: 01491 837951
Rodney Davis tel: 01491 838494
email: [email protected]
Sunday Services
8.30am Holy Communion (BCP)
10.00am Parish Eucharist (Common Worship)
with Children’s Club and Creche
3rd Sunday of the month: Orchestra and a service
for all the Family.
Further details:
For Baptism and Wedding enquiries, please
contact one of the clergy.
The Catholic Parish of St Birinus
Priest: Fr. John Osman, MA., STL.,
Bridge House Presbytery
1 Bridge End, Dorchester-on-Thames
Telephone: 01865 340417
Holy Mass
Weekdays 9.30am
6.30pm Vigil Mass for Sunday
9.30am (Berinsfield Church)
11.00am Solemn Mass
5.45 - 6.15 or upon request
Exposition & Benediction of The Blessed
Sacrament: First Sunday of each Month 5-6pm
Children’s Liturgy of the Word
9.30am during Berinsfield Mass
Wallingford Quakers
13 Castle Street, Wallingford
Enquiries to Warden Tel: 01491 837835
Meeting for Worship
Sunday at 10.30am with Children’s Class.
Discussion groups during the week.
Ridgeway Community Church
The Ridgeway Christian Centre
21b/22 St Mary’s Street, Wallingford
Gareth Lloyd-Jones (Senior Pastor)
Sunday Services
10.00am Worship & Ministry at Christian
For all other activities see our website
www.ridgeway-church.org.uk or telephone
01491 832718
Church of England Parish of Berrick Salome
St Helen’s Church
Vicar: Canon Ian Cohen
The Vicarage, 58 Brinkinfield Rd, Chalgrove
Email: [email protected]
Churchwardens: Dr. Marian Shaw - 01865 890915
Salli Pelling 01865 890970
Sunday Services at 11.00am
1st Sunday of Month - Family Service
2nd Sunday - Holy Communion (BCP)
Other Sundays - Family Communion
Baptisms & Weddings to be arranged with the
Wallingford Methodist Church
St Leonards Square, Wallingford
Minister: Revd Dr David Rankin
Tel: 01235 813242
Email: [email protected]
Website: www.wallingfordmethodistchurch.org.uk
Sunday Services at 10.30am & 6.30pm
Lunch on Tuesdays 12.30pm - 1.30pm
Friendship Group alternate Tuesdays 2.30pm
‘Tots Time’ Wednesday 9.30am - 11.00am
Boys & Girls Brigade Wednesday evenings
Coffee Morning every Thursday 10.30 - 12.00 noon
Wallingford Baptist Church
Thames St, Wallingford
Minister: Pastor Simon Hudson
Tel: 01491 839904
Email: [email protected]
All welcome, please contact David Rankin for details
Sunday Services at 10.30am & 7.00pm
Holy Communion 3rd Sunday each month
Keith Tibbs, writes...
Recording & Caring for the Local
I am sure that many – if not all – who read
last month’s article will have spotted the
“howler” and concluded that yours truly
does not know his hazel from his hawthorn.
The white blossom referred to is a feature of
the latter, not the former, of course. That will
teach me to check what I have written more
A small, select group of BEST members
attended to be amazed at the variety of
moths and by the knowledge and skill of
Marc Botham of CEH in rapidly identifying
individuals as well as telling us about some
of their life histories. We were also treated
to “bacon butties” care of Helen Stevenson
and chunks of fresh pineapple courtesy
Marian Shaw. A very enjoyable couple of
hours but why did not more people take up
the invitation?
The next BEST event is a visit to Wytham
Woods on Friday 12 July, leaving Benson
at 9.30 am. Wytham Woods is an area
of ancient woodland which is owned by
Oxford University and used for
environmental research. Their
website claims that it is one of the
most researched areas of woodland
in the world. The visit will entail
a two hour walk through the
woodlands, led by the conservator
Nigel Fisher. If any non-member of
BEST is interested in joining us for
this visit, please contact one of the
numbers or email addresses listed
(chairman) 01491 836888 or thomas.
[email protected]:
Tibbs (secretary) 01491 838689 or
[email protected]
Eyed Hawk Moth
The planned May visit to Hurst Meadow
was cancelled because of – you’ve guessed
it – the weather. However June saw the
BEST annual moth-trapping event, over the
weekend of 15 June at Millbrook Mead.
Moths, like butterflies and other small
creatures are good indicators of climate
change so that our annual surveys make a
small contribution to the understanding of
what is going on in the natural world. In spite
of the appalling year for members of the
Lepidoptera family (moths and butterflies)
and rain during the night when the traps were
deployed we were very pleased with the
results. A total of 158 moths of 50 different
species were caught, identified and released.
From the Registers at
St Helen’s Benson
21st April Benjamin William Woods
5th May Riley Steven Negus
3rd April Eva Constance Vokins
5th AprilDavid Charles Edward Caswell
22nd April Margaret Lilian Pattison
News & Diary Dates
Available on ‘A Church Near
You’ website:
�� �����������
������������������������������ Email: [email protected]
Sex and Affairs
Peter Abbott, writes...
Is it really going on? Well yes, certainly in
the nest! It would seem that with passerines,
the perching or song birds, such goings
on are the norm! In recent years the use
of DNA analysis has provided a powerful
tool to examine this subject more closely
and more rigorously. For those who have
been following BBC “Springwatch” you
will know that some birds are faithfully
monogamous, e.g. Jackdaw, while others,
e.g. Dunnock are notorious philanderers.
In passerines, A recent study has shown
that passerine faithfulness is quite low, with
monogamy just 15%. Examples:
Percentage of nests with at least one chick
whose father is not its genetic parent:
House Sparrow
House Martin
Great Tit
Blue Tit
Coal Tit
Reed Bunting
Walking with the Ramblers
Kate Hart, writes...
Those readers who regularly look through
the Diary on the back page of the BB will
have noticed that each month (usually)
a number of Ramblers walks are listed.
Judging by those who do come on our
walks and who tell us what they anticipate
in advance of their first one, there are many
misconceptions about the Ramblers which
sometimes deter people from “giving it a
The Didcot and Wallingford group, which is
the group that puts the entries for its walks
into the BB, is made up of almost 200
people, but only a small percentage of those
are regular walkers. However, a significant
number come from Benson, so any new
walker from the Benson area would be
highly likely to know someone else in the
group. Numbers who turn up to walk on
any one day are variable, but on average the
numbers are from about 8 to 20 people.
The beauty of the walks is that everyone
(except the leader!) can decide on the day
if they want to come. Walks go ahead in all
weathers, unless it would be dangerous –
for example due to ice or snow. However,
it does mean that if you are deterred by bad
weather then you can just wait for a walk on
a better day. If you do want to come, then
you don’t need to tell anyone in advance: you
just turn up to the advertised starting place.
Non-members are welcome, but after 2 or 3
walks to try them out, the Ramblers would
expect non-members to consider joining if
they wanted to continue on a regular basis.
The walks are of varying lengths, again as
advertised, but the pace is not too demanding
unless you really haven’t walked for a long
time, in which case choosing one of the
shorter walks would be best.
The local walks tend on the whole to be
graded “moderate”; generally the pace is a
comfortable walking pace, about the pace
that most people set out to walk to the shops.
In the Chilterns there are bound to be hills
but everyone needs time to rest / catch their
breath and there are stops about every hour
for drinks etc. The walk description will
advise if you need to bring a packed lunch,
but most people always bring a snack.
The Ramblers walks are advertised on the
Oxfordshire Area Ramblers website which
will also have details of walks in other parts
of the county and walks in this area run by
other Oxfordshire groups. The walks are
very sociable as well as a good way to
explore the countryside round about and
get healthy and we have been told by new
members that our group is very welcoming
to new walkers. So please do think about
giving it a try. If you can’t find what you
need to know on the web site then do please
give me a ring - my telephone number is
01491 838689.
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email: [email protected]
Available for letting for regular
bookings, meetings, children’s
parties etc.
Booking Secretary
Anne Critchley — 01491 834403
Girlguiding Benson
Helen Stevenson, writes...
The summer term sees all of our Rainbows,
Brownies and Guides making the best of the
long summer evening and good weather and
getting out and about in the great outdoors.
Activities this year have included penny
hikes, scavenger hunts, outdoor cooking
on Trangias and following the history trail
around the village. Still to come is the
Guides annual bike ride over to Warborough
for rounders.
The Brownies and Guides spent an enjoyable
evening at the Ewelme Watercress beds. The
Brownies fed and watered the newly released
hedgehogs and made and raced boats. The
Guides tried out the newly installed pond
dipping platform and caught an awful lot of
fresh water shrimps! According to one Guide,
it was the ‘...best guide meeting ever!’. We
look forward to a second visit next month.
Sunday 16th June saw 60 of our members
(from Benson village and Berinsfield) taking
part in a district fun day at our county centre,
Jubilee House. Rainbows up to Leaders had
a go at abseiling down the fixed tower. Our
other main activity was outdoor cooking
on a wood fire. Toasted sandwiches (some
of which were toasted a little too much!)
and cake cooked in oranges were much
enjoyed! The day culminated in a traditional
We are always looking to recruit new adult
volunteers and it doesn’t have to be all or
nothing. Taking on one task for a unit, or
perhaps helping once a month can really
help to share the load. Get in touch to find
out more. If you daughter is interested in
becoming a member, visit ‘www.girlguiding.
org.uk/interested’ to register her with a unit.
Even if your daughter is too young for that
section, it is really useful for us to have her on
a waiting list so we can plan for the future.
Please contact Helen Stevenson email:
[email protected]
1st Benson Scouts
Alison Wood, writes...
As you may know, we are in urgent need of
new Leaders and Assistant Leaders to share
the running of our group. The group is really
thriving but with Scout Leader Marty Lock
going on a 9 month residential course from
Sept and Beaver Leaders Gemma and Simon
Funnell about to depart for camp-sites new,
the group REALLY needs to identify some
additional adult support.
Some of the exciting and valuable activities our
kids have enjoyed in recent months include:
• orienteering
• survival camping on Bertie West field
• foraging for natural foods • cycle rides
• nature walks
• backwoods cooking
• road safety
• first aid
• firelighting
• shelter building
These experiences build confidence and selfesteem while nurturing vital life skills and
a sense of self reliance. We all want this to
Parents helping out on specific activity nights
is very valuable and means more gets done,
however we need some dedicated commitment
to support each of our sections which effectively
means more Leaders or Assistant Leaders
are required. Our remaining Assistant Scout
Leaders Simon and David for Scouts, Derek
and Alan for Cubs and Neil for Beavers all have
variable work commitments that mean their
future guaranteed weekly involvement will
prove to be difficult. Our hope is that enough
new adults will come forward so that an adult
rota can be drawn up to allow all sections to
continue to meet ideally on a weekly basis.
Unfortunately we do run the risk of having to
fold at least 1 section (Beavers, Cubs or Scouts)
if new full or part time Leaders are not found
for September onwards. Our existing leaders
can vouch for how rewarding it is to see the
kids develop and how much fun is had along
the way.
No previous experience is necessary and
nobody will be thrust into the thick of it against
their wishes. Full training and support at the
District level will be provided. Also keep in
Continued overleaf....
Groceries • Newspapers • Milk
Stamps & parcel collection
Tea Room • Local Produce
Speciality Goodies
‘COOK’ Ready Meals
Open daily 9am-5pm • Sunday 9am -1pm
Black Pig Sausages : perfect for a barbecue
E verything for a summer picnic
Visit us for tea in our historic village
Tel: 01491 834467
1st Benson Scouts (Cont)
Alison Wood, writes...
mind that badge work programmes are all
online now making weekly activity planning
much easier.
If you or someone you know can dedicate
a few hours a week and feel strongly about
supporting 1st Benson Scout Group to ensure
its survival, please contact the Group Secretary
at [email protected] or phone the
Group Chair (Ali Wood) on 01491 824398.
1st Benson Scouts
Marty Lock (Leader), writes...
Taming the Dragon
Scouts from 1st Benson recently participated in
Oxfordshire District’s Aqua Camp. The camp
is an annual water activities extravaganza held
at Standlake, near Witney, and involved over
300 scouts from across the district. The aim on
the camp was to give the scouts an opportunity
to camp, whilst also having a taster of a
variety of water activities including canoeing,
kayaking, raft building, sailing, rowing in gigs,
water games and dragon boating.
Scouts arrived on Friday evening to set up camp
and started activities on Saturday morning.
Despite ‘fresh’ winds and some occasional
downpours, activities all ran on schedule.
Although unconvinced at times by the
statement that “skin is waterproof”, the scouts’
spirits were not dampened and they all put in
their best efforts at the activities. After some
basic paddle skills and safety lessons on the
Dragon Boats, the scouts were soon racing to
the heavy beat of the drum and the boat ‘Bilbo
Baggins’ was cutting through the water at an
impressive speed. Victory in the race was the
reward for their efforts and hard work as well
as the satisfaction of undertaking a completely
new activity that was also great fun.
Activities carried on throughout the day until
the slightly soggy group made their way back
to their site where they were greeted with hot
1st Benson Scouts Kayaking
food, hot chocolate and the opportunity to
share their experiences and stories. Having
worn every piece of dry clothing by the end of
the first day on the water, the scouts understood
the true meaning of the name “Aqua Camp”.
After an evening disco the scouts retired to
bed and silence quickly descended across the
site. There was very little rocking required to
put the weary souls to sleep as the fresh air and
days exertions took its toll. A bright and early
start followed on Sunday, and after a hearty
breakfast the scouts once again descended on
the water for another full day of activities. The
sun emerged at the end of the afternoon just in
time for the closing ceremony. The flag was
taken down for the final time to mark the end of
a fantastic weekend of water based adventures.
I suspect there would have been a few snores
from the back of the cars as the scouts were
driven home.
To see pictures and videos from Aqua Camp,
go to our website at http://bensonscouts.co.uk/
photo-galleries.html If you would like to help
children be part of the amazing and rewarding
Scouting adventure, please contact the Group
at [email protected]
Wallingford Spiritual Cafe
Frances Stacey, writes...
Wallingford Spiritual Café has recently been
formed to provide a forum for people to
explore spirituality in a relaxed and informal
atmosphere. This is not a religious organisation
and has no affiliation to any religion. Under
the auspices of the Wrekin Forum (www.
wrekinforum.org) the Spiritual Café provides
a place where people can come together to
explore spiritual topics and concerns in an open
and supportive atmosphere.
So do join us for a relaxed evening in
comfortable surroundings. We start with a
short talk with a lively discussion afterwards.
You can join in as little or as much as you like.
We meet once a month from 7.30 – 9.30 pm,
either at the Corn Exchange, Market Place,
Wallingford, OX10 0EG or Magda’s Cafe,
Castle Street, Wallingford OX10 8DL .
For further information including dates, topics
and venue please contact: Liz Bubbear by
e-mail: [email protected]
RAF Benson Community
Primary School
Hello from RAF Benson Primary!
Term 5 has been action packed as we have had
a number of events that have taken place and
visitors come to our school.
One of our School visitors, Dr Kate Tiller,
returned to speak with us following her visit to
school to share information about the Queen’s
Jubilee. We were intrigued to know more
about her role of Deputy Lord Lieutenant so
our journalists invited her back to find our
more. Over to them When the Deputy Lord Lieutenant, Dr Kate
Tiller, visited us, we asked her a few questions
about her job and this is what she told us.
Instead of applying for the role, Dr Tiller
was asked to do the job. She has been doing
this job for nine years and thoroughly enjoys
it. Dr Tiller supports the Lord Lieutenant in
representing The Queen in Oxfordshire. Her
work is voluntary and she will have the job
for life or until she reaches the age of 75.
She has many different duties, from carrying
out citizenship ceremonies to attending and
sending invitations to The Queen’s garden
parties, at Buckingham Palace, along with
four to five thousand other special people.
Lord Lieutenants were around in Tudor times
in the 1500’s and worked for Elizabeth I, when
they would have called out the militia. They
once had a uniform but now Dr Tiller only has
a badge. Even now, when a member of The
Royal Family visits, it is the job of the Lord
Lieutenants to make them feel welcome.
Dr Tiller works in the university in Oxford as
a historian and one of her favourite duties was
attending the Diamond Jubilee, where there
was a fly past and The Central Band of the
RAF were playing.
We really enjoyed Dr Tiller’s visit. We felt
very lucky to have been joined by her for the
second time, as she came to represent The
Queen for the Diamond Jubilee last year. She
told us lots about herself and sounded like she
really loves her job.
Dr Tiller, if you are reading this, we want to
say a big THANK YOU and come back any
time you like!
Written by: Ebony Pinn, Jessica Gray, Maisie
Kellett, William Hamilton, Zach Boyd, Finley
Halliwell, Hannah McGrath, Maddie Kellett,
Sam McCrindle, Ellie Lyes and Ellie Tandy.
Next month we will be letting you know all
about the learning that has taken place this
term along with a report from our journalists
about a very special royal visit.
Steph Fawdrey (Headteacher)
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Local Clubs & Societies
Clubs Sec: TBA
Bensington Society
The passport is a document familiar to us all,
used and recognized worldwide. At our May
meeting, our speaker Martin Lloyd (ex of HM
Immigration Service), gave us an intriguing
account of how passports have been influenced
Are you ready for a spine tingling
by assassins and spies. Along with other
summer at your library?
stories, we learnt how a passport linked Lord
From 13th July until 14th September children Palmerston to the attempted assassination of
across Oxfordshire are invited to explore the Napoleon 3rd. Over 100 members and visitors
Creepy House. Are you brave enough to take enjoyed this excellent talk.
on the Summer Reading Challenge and enter Also in May our members visited the newly
the Awful Upstairs, the Gruesome Ground renovated Cutty Sark at Greenwich. We
were shown around the ship by two Blue
Floor and the Spine Tingling Cellar?
You can join the gang Liv, Ollie, Rhys, Saeed, Badge Guides and all agreed that it was very
Tilda, Zoe and Baskerville the dog as they impressive. Some of us were also able to
meet the hair raising residents like Spookitty, visit the Royal College and in particular the
Frankenmouse and Headless Harry to reveal fully restored Painted Hall. There was also
the Greenwich Market and the Maritime
the secrets of the house.
All you have to do is pick up your Creepy Museum in the area – we were certainly spoilt
House poster from your local library. During for choice but just too much to take in on a day
your spooky adventure read six books to trip. A return visit is highly recommended.
Our next outing will be to the new Mary Rose
collect stickers and prizes!
Look out for fantastic new books, exciting Museum with a boat trip around Portsmouth
puzzles and fun activities at the library too! Dockyard on 19th September. Please contact
Log on to the brilliant interactive website Paul Booker on 01491 825864 for details and
availability of places.
which you can find at www.creepy-house.org.uk
The Society’s Historical Sub-Group met on
We look forward to seeing you all!
22nd May to discuss research projects and
Hilary, Pat and Alison
a future study day. The group are hoping to
compare the Benson Census data from 1861
The Mikron Theatre Company and 1911 to get a picture of changes in the
Sue Cooper, writes... village over 50 years. The date for the study
day has yet to be decided. If you were not
The Mikron Theatre Co., who travel able to attend that meeting but would like to
around the country by narrowboat, will be be included, please contact Sue English (HG
performing their new production, “Don’t Secretary) on 01491 837907.
Shoot the Messenger” at the Waterfront The Society’s next main social evening will
Café on Tuesday 30 July at 8pm this year. be on 27th September with a visit by Liz
Woolley of the Oxfordshire Local History
Tickets are £12 (£8 for children).
Proceeds are to be divided between Mikron Association to talk to us about Child Labour
in 19th Century Oxfordshire. The Society
and the Friends of Benson Library.
Please contact Sue Cooper 835631 or subscribes to the OLHA and Liz has spoken
[email protected] for tickets or further to us previously. Visitors are always welcome
(£4 entry) with buffet supper and drinks
available to purchase. Society details can be
Continued overleaf....
Basket and Patio plants
Hanging Baskets and Tubs
Seasonal Bedding and Vegetable Plants
Perennials and Herbs
Compost, Canes and sundries
Find us at: PYRTON
OX49 5AN
01491 612479
Local Clubs & Societies (Cont.)
Clubs Sec: TBA
found in the Benson Library, on our village
notice board and on our website at www.
Sue Brown (Secretary) 01491 837885
Benson WI
Our May meeting was well attended with 30
members and 2 guests. The usual business
was discussed and several items from the
News and Views were mentioned, namely,
the Supreme Court and Somerset House visit
and Wisley Gardens. There were two very
successful trips organized by Delia in May. An
art exhibition at Brightwell was well attended
with lunch at Root One then off to Geoffrey
Harcourt’s house to view his wonderful
paintings. The whole trip was in conjunction
with Oxford Arts Week. The second outing
was to the Earth Trust at Little Wittenham
where we had an hour’s walk, a lunch and a
short talk about the Trust and the good work
they do for the environment. A W.I. coach trip
to Cambridge took place on 21st May with 6
members from Benson enjoying the day. We
then discussed the resolution for the national
federation’s annual meeting. It concerns
the “Decline of our High Streets and Town
centres” and the damaging effect this has on
local communities. All members were urged
to support their local shops and make the High
Street their choice for goods and services. An
unanimous vote to support this resolution
went through. Then on to a lighter note when
Sandra introduced David Beasley who had
brought with him his wonderful collection of
local slides dating back pre-1914. His easy
manner and interesting facts about Benson
and surrounding areas kept our attention and
it was fun to link the “then and now”. The vote
of thanks was given by Jill. Tea was served
by Lynn and Gwenda, the raffles were won by
Delia, Jill and Dorothy.
Our next meeting on July 17th features
Duncan brown talking to us about “Mayors of
Benson W.I. meets every 3rd Wednesday
in the month at the parish Hall at 7.30pm.
Visitors always welcome. Ring Mary on
01491 838748 for further information.
Benson Tennis Club
Junior Summer Camps 2013
At Benson Tennis Club we offer a professional
and fun filled tennis coaching program during
the holidays, with our professionally qualified
coach, Mandy Nall. Our focus is to provide a
holiday camp experience that is safe, mixing it
with a big dose of fun to ensure your child has
a great time. It is recommended to book your
place early as our holiday camps are always
over subscribed!
Each camp will run for three days,either in the
morning or the afternoon. Groups are limited
to a maximum of 8 players and are organised
by age and ability. Camps for children aged
between 5-7 and 8-10 years will be run on
Monday 5th to Wednesday 7th August. For
older Juniors aged 11 years and upwards the
camp will run Monday 12th to Wednesday
14th August. Cost is £40-45 for members and
£50-55 for non-members. Courses run for 2 or
2.5 hours per day. If you would like your son
or daughter to attend one of our Camps then
please visit http://www.bensontennisclub.
co.uk/ or email [email protected] for
a registration form.
Rusty Rackets
If you have not picked up your racket in
a few years or if you would like some
non-pressurised coaching in a friendly
environment, then get down to Benson Tennis
Club on a Wednesday morning 9.30 - 10.30,
where our qualified coach, Liz Bowles, runs
a friendly Rusty Racket session. Coaching
for the summer finishes in July but restarts
on Wednesday 4th September. Any questions
please contact [email protected]
Gina Russell
Email your club news to
[email protected]
We are a friendly club
with excellent facilities!
• 4 all weather courts
• flood lights
• social & match play
• coaching for all ages
• junior & senior club nights
• great value individual & family
As we are right on your doorstep,
why not come and join us this year?
For more information &
contact details:
Mini Digger / Skip Loader With Operator
Local Clubs & Societies (Cont.)
Clubs Sec: TBA
Benson Garden Club
Our June outing in glorious sunshine was to a
lovely hidden garden in Upper Buckleberry.
A valley garden with a lake surrounded by
woods and rhododendrons, which, because of
the late spring and summer, were in flower at
the same time as the roses, making an unusual
sight. The coach outing was a bargain with
two gardens and Batsford arboretum to delight
us all in one trip. In early July we will visit
a walled garden with a 5 acre vineyard near
Witney, so there is something quite different
each time for our members to enjoy. August
will see us at our annual summer social in a
members garden, where after seeing other
nearby gardens, we will share plates of food
brought along by each member. This always
brings forth some nice surprises and members
will be informed of the venue nearer the time.
The plant sale earlier in the year went very
well and thanks to all our supporters we have
been able to make a nice donation to the Mill
Stream Day Centre. If you bought plants we
hope they are doing well for you and thank
you for supplying or buying. Members need
to inform Jane if they would like to go to RHS
Wisley in September. Phone 01685 891208.
Penny Noble
Benson Trefoil Guild
14 of our Trefoil Group spent an enjoyable
day out in Oxford (16th May 2013), we had
glorious sunshine all day. We took an open top
bus tour of the city, around the back streets of
Oxford is another world the architecture of the
Universities is really beautiful and not always
appreciated from the ground. We enjoyed a
lovely lunch then went our own ways to see
and do different things. Five of us went to
look at the Sheldonion, Radcliffe Camera and
the Bridge of Sighs.
Five of the Benson Guild and two of the
Chipping Norton Guild had a week away
in Bournemouth (May 2013) and had great
weather, good food and a really lovely hotel.
We enjoyed days out on the buses with
our magic passes. If you would like more
information about this happy group of people
please ring Jackie on 01491 839934.
Jackie Spencer
South Oxfordshire Generals
Your local wargamers are putting on another
demo game in the Mill Stream Centre and
visitors are very welcome!
Saturday 3rd August from 10am will see
the first big battle in the American Civil War
refought in Benson, as the Battle of 1st Bull
Run (yes they had several of them!) was fought
between the Union and the new Confederacy
– the Blues v The Greys. The North believed
that it would be simple, an easy victory over
the outnumbered rebels and then the Civil War
would be over. Didn’t quite turn out like that
on the day, but can history be changed? Why
not pop in for a few minutes and see!
We always welcome new players, no
experience required, no membership fees and
we provide the miniature soldiers. Got to be
the best offer around.
Dave Rushton (01491-838711)
Wallingford U3A
Wallingford U3A’s programme of talks for
the summer are :
July 3rd Martin Sirot–Smith: “Washington at
Sulgrave Manor”
August 7th Dr. Tony Maisey: “How and Why
We Age”
Our Meetings are held at 2.00 pm on the first
Wednesday of the Month, in Crowmarsh
Village Hall. Visitors are always welcome.
For more information ring Hermione
on 01645 858024, or visit our website at
Wallingford Flower Club
Wednesday 10th July 2013 at Crowmarsh
Village Hall 7.15 for 7.45 pm
A Floral Demonstration “Arranging with
Garden Flowers” by Jo Wise – Florist Green
and Georgeous Cutting Garden Littlestoke.
Non Members welcome £4 each. For more
information phone (01491) 834303
Fay Crabbe
Classified Ads....
Tel: 01491 201734
Carpet & Upholstery Cleaning by your local
specialists. Wet or dry systems used. Trained,
insured & NCCA approved. Quality work at
unbeatable rates. Call Grimebusters 01491 670013
/ 01235 555533
Cleaning Supplies & Machines - Hire - Sales
- Advice - Repairs - Domestic/Industrial. Call
Clean Machine on 01491 825600 or e-mail [email protected]
machinesthatclean.com Find us on Facebook/
Lady Gardener available for general garden
maintenance, also home cleaning. Reasonable
rates. Phone Diana on 07880 691704
Man & Van Low cost removals and rubbish
clearance. Enquiries welcome 7 days a week. Call
Mark 01235 511846 or 07770 862413
Longpine Roofing & Property Maintenance.
Local village family firm. Tel: 01491 652494
Email: [email protected]
Film and Video Transfer Service to DVD, LP’s
& 45 Records to CD at sensible prices. For quote
phone 01491 825964 or email:
[email protected]
Two adults plus dog wanting SHORT-TERM
LET from September for 4-6 months, in Benson or surrounding area. Please phone: 01491835481.
VHS, Camcorder Tapes Transferred to DVD
from £3 per tape. Computer Repair, Setup,
Tuition from £12ph. Wallingford 01491 200524
/ 07910975248 Email: [email protected]
gmail.com www.motionflyerpictures.com
Benson Parish Hall
Benson Parish Office: 01491 825038
Office hours: Mon, Wed, Thu and Fri 0930 am to 1230 pm
Short Mat BowlsMon 1.45-4pm/Wed 7-10pm
BadmintonMon 8-10pm
BingoTues 7-9pm
Floodlit TennisThurs 7.00pm
TEL/FAX 01491 825038
Benson Youth Hall
Table Tennis
Fri 8 - 10pm
email your news to
[email protected]
About Benson Bulletin
[email protected]
Est. 1994
The Benson Bulletin is published by Benson Bulletin
News Association, and delivered free to all households in
Benson, RAF Benson, Roke, Rokemarsh, Berrick Salome
and Ewelme. All concerned in its production and delivery
are volunteers. Material published in The Benson Bulletin
is copyright, but the Editor may grant permission for
reproduction upon request. Whilst every effort is made
to ensure the accuracy of information printed in The
Benson Bulletin, the Editor and Publishers cannot accept
any responsibility for the consequences of any errors
that may occur. Neither are the opinions published in
The Benson Bulletin necessarily those of the Editor or
The Benson Bulletin News Association. The Editor is
pleased to receive material for publication, but reserves
the right to shorten, clarify or reject it at her discretion.
Copy may be submitted via e-mail to [email protected]
co.uk. Typed and handwritten copy is also acceptable and
should be delivered/sent to Benson Parish Hall before the
12th of the month previous to publication. All printed
photographs will be scanned and returned.
BB’s Deadlines
Copy: 12th of month previous
Advertising: 12th of month previous
The Benson Bulletin
c/o Benson Parish Hall
Benson, Oxon. OX10 6LZ
BBNA Committee Members:Chair
Jill Parrick
Treasurer Kyri Kyriakoudis
To advertise in BB contact Anne Fowler on
Secretary Patricia Baylis
01491 201734 or [email protected]
Advertising Anne Fowler
Clubs’ Sec
Distribution Don Fletcher
Distribution Ivor Allen
Anne Fowler
Asst Editor Tom Stevenson
John Burrell

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