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Contact: judifinch@btconnect.com


Please do let me know if you would like anything to be included in the next issue. The deadline for items to be included in the next Newsletter is 18 March 2014.

Road Closure

There will be a road closure between Combe Sydenham and Elworthy Cross from 17th February for up to 12 days. Full details posted in Village Shop.


Brompton Ralph Parish Council

The Parish Council met on Tuesday 29th October at Village hall 7.30pm.

An affordable housing proposal was made to the Parish Council, following a defined need for 3 affordable houses from a local survey made with Brompton Ralph and Clatworthy.

The only way to develop the plot required a mixture of 3 affordable and 3 open market houses. The open market houses would subsidise the affordable houses.

The houses would be low energy, super insulated, timber framed structures built to German Passive House Standards. The indicated plot was located just below Oddwell Cottage towards Winters Combe.

A further Parish Council meeting was arranged for 27th November for the benefit of the local parishioners of Brompton Ralph and Clatworthy At that meeting a presentation was made by Phil Neave, Building Consultant, Martin Peat Building Contractor, Nick Lowe Architect and Colin Savage West Somerset.

The meeting was well attended by many local parishioners.

At that meeting a majority agreement was made to go ahead with the proposal and allow the architect to develop the plans further

Members of the Parish Council are: Nick Moore, Hazel Scott, Keith Turner, Lena Lewis, Penny Richards, Phil Scott and Roy Tackle.

Correspondence of Parish interest received (copies in the Village Shop or on the Village Hall Website):

1. Police News

2. Spinal Injuries Association –press release for Fish and Chip Supper

3. Duchy Competition application form

4. a Youth Employment Scheme Agency referral form.

    b Youth Employment Scheme self referral form.

5. Journey to Employment notice

6. Somerset County Council Transport Review notice

St Mary’s Church

It’s great to be able to report that the main restoration work has now been completed.

The scaffolding was removed in time for us to be able to hold our Carol Service on the Sunday before Christmas. A good big congregation attended, and Rev David our Rector took the opportunity to include a suitable thanksgiving during the service.

Our architect has declared himself very pleased with the quality of workmanship, and an architect from English Heritage has visited and has signed off the job without any reservations. There now just remains some work to be done inside, in particular on the organ and inside the porch.

We are fortunate that our main contractors, Contratec Developments Ltd of Barnstaple, not only submitted the lowest tender but also have carried out their work thoroughly and in a co-operative manner. The stormy weather since Christmas has already tested the results, with no problems having arisen.

We are most grateful to everyone who has supported the project with donations, or through coming to our fund-raising events or assisting at them. Thank you once again.


1-2 February Benefice weekend Wiveliscombe

3 February 10.00am Julian meeting Cridlands Barn

16 February 4.00pm Evensong St Mary’s

20 February (Thursday) 10.00am Holy Communion Clatworthy Church

2 March 9.15am Holy Communion* St Mary’s

3 March 10.00am Julian meeting Cridlands Barn

16 March 4.00pm Evensong St Mary’s

27 March (Thursday) 10.00am Holy Communion St Mary’s

* with the Bishop of Taunton

Geoff Chamberlin

PCC secretary


Brompton Ralph Revue 2013

Brompton Ralph’s tenth annual Christmas Revue took place on the 12th, 13th and 14th December in front of a numerous and highly appreciative audience. The theme of the twinning of Brompton Ralph with the Himalayan village of Brahmal Potra provided the participants with a broad scope for their creativity, and the general opinion of those who came to see the show was that the group had excelled itself in all areas. This is clearly a challenge which becomes more demanding each year, but increasing experience, and the incorporation of more sophisticated technology by the technical crew mean that no scenario is impossible – even a plane crash in the mountains. The exotic location of the second half of the show allowed for vividly colourful costuming, scenery and unusual choreography, and throughout, a sparkling script, confidently delivered, had the audience fully engaged. Indeed, many have since confessed to being in tears of mirth, which is always the aim.

Thanks to all who came and supported us and expressed their appreciation with applause and subsequent flattering comments. As director, I should also like to thank publicly the group and helpers in all areas for another fun and successful opener to the Christmas festivities, with its bonus of approximately £1200 raised for the Village Hall .

In addition to this we get an annual grant from The Barclays Bank Community Fund of £750.

Verity Martindill

Brompton Ralph WI

Having welcomed in the New Year with a delicious lunch in January, we are all set to enjoy a varied programme in 2014. On 5th February, Mrs Margaret Smith, with her dog, “Mason”, will be talking to us about Dogs for the Disabled, and on 5th March Mr Bob Henderson will be introducing us to “Drawing by Dimensions”.

Meetings in the Village Hall start at 2.30pm on the first Wednesday of every month except August, and, as ever, we offer a warm welcome to anyone who would like to join us as a guest or as a possible member.

For further details, please talk to any WI member, or phone Sue Welch (624716) or Nora Gammon (667583).

Smallholders Group

The Smallholders’ next meeting will take place on 11th Feb '14 at 7.30pm in the Village Hall. There will be a talk by Mark Soutar M.R.C.V.S. from Evolution Vets on General First Aid for farm animals.

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Brompton Ralph Village Shop

The new year sees the shop pottering on well, having had our AGM before Christmas and all accounts successfully filed at HMRC and the FCA. That's a good feeling. We have even set a date for next years AGM! At the risk of repeating myself many thanks again to the folks who help run and support the shop. As the adage goes,' if you want something done, ask a busy person'-that's certainly the case with the shop volunteers. As ever-it wouldn't be here without them. On that note-we are long overdue a 'trip out' for everyone involved in the shop, or anyone who has been, but we don't know where to go or what to do? Any ideas?

Accounts wise the shop showed a small loss of £130 which is ok as we are paying off some previous debts and keeping everything done as it should be. We had a nice little raffle at Christmas - thank you everyone, which raised £119. We have had a change in the delivery of newspapers following the closure of the Newsagents in Wivey-so sad, another small business gone, but I guess the big stores don't mind. We are now getting the papers delivered here to the shop by 7 in the morning, so those folks who trawled up and down to Wivey for the newspaper readers-what a good job you did-you can now have a break! Anyone can feel free to join in, and have a paper delivered any day of the week.

Of course we can always use new volunteers! Its a social experience helping in the shop for as much or as little as you like-or just come in for a cup of tea! What we really need is anyone with ideas for improvement or new things worth trying. I have time to keep up with the day to day, but not the extra polish we need.

What we also really need, of course, is more customers-there must be 60 plus residences within a mile or so and we never see anyone from perhaps a third of these. Perhaps they are all ghosts! Come and see us-remember its a community shop and YOUR friends and neighbours doing this for the community. We have a notice board for your signs, we are a dropping off and collection point for everything from parcels, to plants, to gifts, to you name it-its been passed on here-from friend to friend. Ticket selling for your events, the Parish Magazine and so on. Not to mention a dry cleaning service, the lovely Aimee in the Post Office Monday, Wednesday and Friday. We have fresh bread twice weekly from the excellent 'Upper Crust' bakery, meat and cheese from the award winning Thorne's Butchers, (at the same price as you pay in their shop itself), so ordering your meat if you want to save a trip, is a service on offer. Bulk orders from the cash and carry or Queenwood Natural Foods are charged at just 10% above cost, so stock up and really do something about that carbon footprint, and earn yourself some more time. Local free range eggs at £1.10 for medium and £1.25 for large. I haven't seen many places cheaper than that-let me know where if you do!

Right enough nagging! Come in if we can help with anything at all. Don't forget-volunteers trip-we need inspiration, and thank you all again as ever.

Kathy and Team

Brompton Ralph Cricket Club

On the cricket front it was a very difficult year, we found it impossible to field three teams in the early part of the season, and hence had to withdraw the 2nd XI from the West Somerset League. It was far better to keep the 3rd XI in Division 5 as we have a huge number of young players, and it is wise to build for the future.

The 1st XI had a disappointing season, which resulted in relegation from Division 1. A lack of player commitment and non-availability meant that over 30 different players made 1st team appearances throughout the summer, this definitely did not help the cause long term. However, it was a very close table this season, whereby in the final two weeks the bottom five clubs were all fighting for survival, and it came down to the last weekend. Sadly it did not go our way, and we now have to bounce back next year! The 3rd XI had a very promising season indeed, with some excellent results along the way. They finished mid table, and will certainly be pushing for the top spots next summer.

The juniors had another successful season—in the Towergate League both the Under 11s and Under 13s finished runners up in their respective tables. The Under 11s had a superb run in their cup competition, and were eventually beaten in the semi-final stage by Glastonbury—a side fielding all players from Millfield School. They were also finalists in our six-a-side tournament, again beaten by Glastonbury! This was an excellent day, made possible by all the helpers involved, thank you to them all. As well as the Under 13s doing well at their own level, a few made their debuts in the 3rd XI, which is what we are aiming towards.

The ladies played a few friendly matches during the summer which were very enjoyable. Thank you to Tom Gill for continuing to umpire their matches. Izzy Williams is still being selected for county cricket, and is in fact doing very well as an opening bat at that level.

Many thanks, as always, to our Chairman, Vice-Chairman, players, supporters, scorers and all those who help in any way at the club. Mike Morin is standing down as Vice-Chairman due to ill health, and I would like to take this opportunity to thank him for all his efforts at the club over the years.

Thank you to our loyal tea ladies, their effort during the summer is appreciated very much each year. More help is always wanted, if anyone is prepared to join the tea rota, please let us know in due course!

The six-a-side was held in July, Wiveliscombe were the winners for the second year running, beating Ashbrittle in the final. Our pig roast was held in June, again a good profit was made for the club. Thank you to all the helpers involved on these occasions.

Our second pitch is still being hired regularly, both Monksilver and Taunton Shadows have made good use of it this summer. This is great for regular income, and in fact Taunton Shadows will be hiring it for all of their home fixtures next season. We also welcome back our regular visitors from London each year, who hire both pitches resulting in an extremely profitable day for the club.

With regard to upgrading the clubhouse, work began in November on phase one, two new changing rooms, showers, ladies and gents toilets. The site has been levelled, and work on the foundations has commenced. Hopefully phase two will follow if sufficient funds are available, this being the construction of a new kitchen. The building work is being carried out by Dave Lee of Westonzoyland.

The club is still open during the winter months—thank you to John Scott for continuing to organise the friendly skittles.

For the coming season, 2014, we are running an under 11s and under 15s boys and girls teams (anyone interested contact Andy on 01984 667417 or Tommy on 01984 624713), and two mens teams and a ladies team. Please contact Roy Tackle on 01823 433733.

Hopefully we can look forward to a better cricket season in 2014, and watch the building take its new shape.

Roy Takle (Honorary Secretary)

Youth Employment Scheme / Job Project

This is to jog your memories about the YES project to help young people into work, running from The Base, Wiveliscombe. The sessions will run on Wednesdays and Thursdays.

In the light of government figures issued there continues to be a significant number of young people currently not in work, education or training and thousands believing there is little incentive for a positive outlook on life. We want to ‘buck’ that trend, so have set up the YES project.

Please refer anyone whom you think may be interested in the project; if they do not know about it, they cannot get involved, so we need your help in promoting the project.

John Hellier and I may be able to come out to meet young people on a one to one basis, to discuss the project and in certain individual circumstances, we may be able to offer support with transport.

If you have any queries or questions, please feel free to contact us on the numbers below.

Tim Lewis, Careers Adviser and Youth Worker, In The Mix Project , Wiveliscombe & Area 01984 248062 Mobile - 07794 132374 (outside office hours) www.inthemixproject.org.uk

Broadband from Wiveliscombe Exchange

I have recently been speaking to BT regarding the poor Broadband speed I receive at Pitsford Hill. Apparently they are in the process of evaluating the exchange at Wiveliscombe for a possible upgrade to Fibre Broadband, BT Infinity, and I just wondered whether the parish council are aware of this. I feel sure it would be beneficial to many for both personal and business use. It would help the cause if people were to register interest on the BT.com site, there is no commitment in doing so and BT will then update interested parties as to the progress.

Bernie Campbell

The Prince of Wales Award 2014

The Royal Bath & West of England Society has teamed up with the Duchy of Cornwall for a third year to bring The Prince of Wales Award 2014 to the Royal Bath & West Show.

This Award is open to community organisations, schools, colleges and groups which have, through their own initiative, brought about improvements to the lives of the rural population in a sustainable manner. The Award is intended to embrace a wide range of schemes where there has been a genuine attempt to move forward in a resourceful and inventive way to the benefit of a rural Community.

Finalists will receive complimentary tickets to the Royal Bath & West Show and the overall winner of the competition will receive £1000 in prize money and a memento from HRH The Prince of Wales which the winning group must use to further their community initiatives.

Are you aware of any community projects that would be suitable for The Prince of Wales Award 2014? All entrants will need to complete the entry form attached and return to the address on the back of the application form.

If you require any further information please do not hesitate to contact me. For more information on The Prince of Wales Award 2014 please visit our website at: http://www.bathandwest.com/prince-wales-award-2014/228/

Lydia Matthews, Marketing & PR, The Royal Bath & West Society, T: 01749 822235


Brompton Ralph Community Orchard

Brendon Orchards Cooperative which has as part of its aim to encourage the growing and use of fruit trees in the Ten Parishes, have received permission from the PCC to plant a small orchard of five trees on the grassland behind the church which Betty and Peter Corfield fenced, gated and provided a bench for, and which some villagers began to develop as a wildflower meadow the year before last. The Cooperative will supply trees and guards. They will encourage wildlife and will be there for everyone in the village to pick as they want.

We plan to plant before the end of March and are currently thinking about varieties. We've taken advice from Mr Small at Charlton Orchards and apple growers in the area as to which varieties to grow at this height for disease-resistance, taste and succession and have so far come up with the following list: Lane's Prince Albert as a cooker, Discovery, Laxton's Fortune, Lord Lambourne, Egremont Russet, Kidd's Orange Red, and Sunset as eaters.

If you have any comments about this selection, if you want to recommend a favourite that you know grows well here, or if you would like to help with the planting, please contact me or leave a message in the shop.

Judy Crosher, judy.crosher@talktalk.net

Diary for February and beyond

1-2 February Benefice weekend Wiveliscombe

3 February 10.00am Julian meeting Cridlands Barn

5 February 2.30pm WI Village Hall

10 February 7.00 pm Flower Show Village Hall

11 February 7.30pm Smallholders Village Hall

16 February 4.00pm Evensong St Mary’s

20 February (Thursday) 10.00am Holy Communion Clatworthy Church

24 February 7.30pm Whist Village Hall

25 February 7.30pm Parish Council WI

2 March 9.15am Holy Communion* St Mary’s

3 March 10.00am Julian meeting Cridlands Barn

4 March Pancake Race Clatworthy

5 March 2.30pm WI Village Hall

16 March 4.00pm Evensong St Mary’s

24 March 7.30pm Whist Village Hall

27 March (Thursday) 10.00am Holy Communion St Mary’s

2 April 2.30pm WI Village Hall