Bishops Castle

PATIENTS GROUP SURVEY LAUNCHED – Bishops Castle Patients Group (BCPG) is pleased to announce that its 2014 patient survey will be launched on Monday. The short survey is open to all those registered with Bishops Castle Medical Practice and will be available for collection from the surgery, the pharmacy and Enterprise House from that date.

Completed surveys may be returned to the same locations.

The purpose of the survey is to help BCPG and the medical practice understand the needs of Bishops Castle patients.

BCPG is committed to maintaining excellent communications between the patients and the practice and to ensuring that registered patients are able to contribute to the development of the practice. Last year’s first ever survey from BCPG resulted in a 37% response rate. BCPG hopes to do even better this year and is especially keen to hear from the younger age groups, who were poorly represented in 2013.

The analysis and results of the survey will be published in March and will be made available in the surgery, online and on notice boards in Bishops Castle. BCPG can be contacted via the drop-box in the surgery, by email at bcpatientsgroup@ or via their website at

JOAN BAKER EXHIBITION – Bishops Castle artist Joan Baker has an exhibition of work at the Silk Top Hat Gallery in Ludlow. It runs from February 17 until March 15, from 10am until 5pm, Monday to Saturday.

The exhibition was planned some time ago and comprises more than 20 landscapes completed before Joan’s recent serious illness, from which she is still recovering.

Some experimental sketchbooks created as part of her rehabilitation will also be on show and Joan will be discussing these at a private view on February 16 from 11am until 1pm.

One of Shropshire’s most prolific and respected painters, Joan Baker has exhibited her work far and wide, including the Royal Academy, Royal Birmingham Society of Artists and the Royal Institute of Painters in Watercolour.

ARTS FEST – Bishops Castle Arts Festival is going from strength to strength and has expanded to five days this year to accommodate more than 30 events. The festival runs from February 19-23 and includes art exhibitions, art and craft workshops for all ages, music, poetry, talks, an artisan market, dance, film, food and drink. Town venues from galleries to pubs, cafés to shops and halls to libraries are opening their doors to host the events.

One of the musical highlights is a concert by singing duo Beguildy (Janie Mitchell and Anne Marie Summers) together with Benji Kirkpatrick, who will have just returned from his European tour with Bellowhead. The three will be performing folk music of Shropshire using a range of instruments including harp, guitar, bazouki, hammered dulcimer and vocal harmonies. The concert is on February 21, 7.30pm, in The Three Tuns, Bishops Castle.

Tickets cost £5, available in advance from The Castle Hotel and The Three Tuns. Programme details at or call Judith Shone on 01588 630349.

BOXING DAY DANCERS – The Shropshire Bedlams and Martha Rhoden’s Tuppenny Dish morris dancers were out dancing on Boxing Day at the Three Tuns in Bishops Castle.

Their appearance raised £200 in donations for the Midlands Air Ambulance and the teams would like to thank everyone who gave so generously.

The next outing for the dancers will be at events to celebrate the opening of the new village hall at Lydbury North at the end of March. This is followed by a full programme throughout the year, including dancing in August at the world-famous Sidmouth Folk Week in Devon. Details at

NEW ZEALAND TRIP FOR PRESIDENT – Bishops Castle WI met in the Methodist hall on January 21. The president of the institute, Alison Price, gave a talk about her recent six-week holiday in New Zealand which members found very interesting. The only downside seemed to be the very long flights. The evening ended with supper prepared by members. The next meeting is on February 18, when the speaker’s subject will be Wade china.

Everyone is welcome at 7.30pm.

EIGHTIETH BIRTHDAY THANKS – Barbara Preece, of Lydbury North, thanks family and friends for her 80th birthday open-house celebration.

Donations of £450 have been given to the Midlands Air Ambulance.

DORIS WINS IN DECEMBER – The December winners of the Lydham Church 100 Club draw were: Doris Wright – £27.25, Kerry Derne – £16.35 and Angela Smith – £10.90. Call Jimmy Garnier on 01588 638486 if you would like to join.

MISSING BASKET – A large white laundry basket full of catering and dining equipment has gone missing after a social event in the Church Barn, Bishops Castle, on Saturday, January 18.

Church members had held an Italian evening in the building, locking up at about 10.40pm. The basket was packed up with checked tablecloths, salad bowls, salad servers, condiments, an apron, a glass bowl containing half a trifle and a pair of leather gloves, ready to be taken home.

However, it was left behind on the roadside, where it was spotted some time later by Six Bells landlord Nev Richards. The pub is just across the road from the Church Barn and Mr Richards helpfully moved the basket inside the gate of the barn. On discovering their basket was missing, the event organiser hurried back to the barn, only to find it gone.

If you can help find the basket and its contents, call 01588 630018.

SCHOOL IS ‘GOOD’ SAYS OFSTED – Bishops Castle Primary School had a visit from OFSTED at the end of 2013. The two-day inspection resulted in the school being up-graded from ‘satisfactory’ to ‘good’ in all areas of the inspection. The report describes a school where pupils make “outstanding progress in read - ing and good progress in writing and mathematics”. Headmaster Andrew Barker said: “I am delighted for the staff and children that the report clearly and accurately identifies the strengths of the school, as well as giving us constructive ideas for developing further. We work hard to make Bishops Castle Primary a school that children look forward to coming to every day.”

For more information, or to make an appointment to view the school, call 01588 638522.

COLLEGE OPEN MORNING – Bishops Castle Community College held an open morning on January 30 for parents and carers of children in Years 5 and 6 at primary school coming to see the college at work.

The morning began with an introductory talk by head teacher Alan Doust, followed by a tour of the college and a chance to meet current Year 7 stu - dents. A question-and-answer session followed. Call 01588 638257 or look on for more information about the school.

SPOTLIGHT ON WROXETER – The South West Shropshire Historical and Archaeological Society met in the Church Barn, Bishops Castle, on January 14 to hear Dr Roger White talk about Wroxeter, a Town and its Landscape. He began with a summary of the history of excavation of the site – the fourth largest city in Roman Britain – and marginally larger in area than Pompeii. It is now protected against agricultural or other potentially damaging development.

With data gathered from surveys using magnetometry, resistivity, GPS and aerial photography, Dr White traced the development of the city from a first century AD fortress, through its growth into a flourishing city, to its decline in the fifth and sixth centuries. He showed how the streets of the city’s centre were lined with substantial public buildings and fine houses, including the recently reconstructed villa, while some of the outlying areas within the wall were hardly developed at all.

In conclusion he suggested that Wroxeter was a site of paramount importance to our understanding of Roman Britain, worthy of a higher profile among the country’s ancient monuments. On behalf of a packed audience, SWSHAS president David Preshous thanked Dr White for his scholarly and illuminating lecture.

The next SWSHAS meeting will be at 7.30pm on Tuesday in the Church Barn, Bishops Castle. Mike Nurse will lecture on Powis Castle – Welsh Wars to the Present Day. Guests are welcome at a fee of £5.

MIDWIFE IN UGANDA – Mainstone WI held their first meeting of 2014 in the village hall on January 14, with Sandra Davies presiding. Anne Lewis gave out the Heartstart certificates to members who have completed the course. AGM resolutions were collected and the Shropshire federation walk on the Shropshire Way was discussed.

Julia Rogers, daughter of a member, was the speaker for the evening.

She is a midwife in Welshpool and has spent time working in Uganda.

She showed photographs of her time there and members were amazed by the beauty of the country and how poor the people were who lived there. Some patients travel home for two hours on the back of a motorcycle after giving birth.

Ann Lewis gave the vote of thanks.

The competition for the most sewing items in a matchbox was won by Lyn Higgs, 2nd Sheila Leeke, 3rd Olwen Watkins.

BEGUILDY – Bishops Castle Arts Festival 2014 is hosting an Evening of Shropshire Folk Music with local musicians Janie Mitchell, Annemarie Summers and Benji Kirkpatrick.

Mitchell and Summers perform as the vocal harmony duo Beguildy, playing many instruments including the harp, hammered dulcimer, guitar and clarinet. Beguildy are launching their new CD The Mary Webb Songs at this event. Tickets for the event at The Three Tuns on February 21 at 7.30pm are £5 and can be bought in advance from The Castle Hotel and The Three Tuns or on the door.

RAILWAY SOCIETY – The next meeting of the Bishops Castle Railway Society is tomorrow (Friday) at 7.30pm at the Methodist church hall.

The speaker is the society chairman, John Rimmer, whose talk is entitled The Slow Train. All are welcome, visitors to pay £2, members free.


THURSDAY: The Novice Detective, aged 13 and over. SpArC Theatre, Bishops Castle, £8/£5, 7.30pm. Call 01588 630321 or 638038.

  • Footpath Walking Group, Chirbury eight miles. Meet Harley Jenkins St car park, Bishops Castle, 9.30am. Call 01938 555950.

FRIDAY: Quiz and hot supper in aid of Lydbury North Primary School trip to York. Inn on the Green, Wentnor, £8 each, 7.30pm. Call 01588 680297.

MONDAY: Bingo in aid of Hope House, Powis Arms, Lydbury North, 8pm. Call 01588 680396.

TUESDAY: SWSHAS, Powis Castle, Welsh Wars to the Present Day with Mike Nurse. Church Barn, Bishops Castle, 7.30pm.

  • Mainstone WI, Tunisian Crochet – Cathy Turner, village hall, 7.30pm.

WEDNESDAY: Talk entitled This Wretched Cult, Christianity and the Roman Empire – David Preshous, community college, Bishops Castle, 2pm.

  • Footpath Walking Group, Todleth, Meet Harley Jenkins St car park, Bishops Castle, 9.30am. Call 01588 620470.


Clun Valley

TWO LANDSCAPES DARWIN HELD DEAR – Shropshire’s residents are being encouraged to see the county through Darwin’s eyes with the publication of Two Landscapes Darwin Held Dear by Ewa Prokop, a Darwin enthusiast who has worked in nature conservation in both Downe and Shropshire. Ewa has created an impression of Darwin’s Shropshire by piecing-together historic records of biodiversity in his day together with selected modern records. Two Landscapes Darwin Held Dear is available from

Visit Ewa’s website www.mada -

OLD SURGERY GALLERY - The Old Surgery Gallery at Clun is currently operating on winter hours whereby it is only open on a Saturday and a Sunday from 10am to 5pm except for half-term week when the gallery opens all week February 17-21.

There is currently the annual February sale, however, when the price of all art work purchased dur - ing the month will be discounted by 10%.

FLICKS IN THE STICKS - Hysteria (15) is showing at Clun Memorial Hall on Saturday. 7.30pm, adult £4.50, under 16 £2.50, interval refreshments. Enquiries 01588 640254 or email

TIM’S TRAVELS CONCERT TRIP TO BIRMINGHAM - Tim’s Travels has vacant seats on the coach to attend an Orchestra of the Swan afternoon concert on February 26 in the town hall, Birmingham. The coach leaves Newcastle on Clun at 9.15am; Clun at 9.30am; Clunton at 9.40am and picks up where needed on the way to Craven Arms and also at Ludlow Food Centre and the rail station if required. The coach arrives in Birmingham at around 11.30am giving time for lunch, shopping or a visit to the art gallery or the new Birmingham library. A front circle seat for the concert and your seat on the coach costs £30 and may be booked with Tim Wood on 01588 640506.

CLUN WALKS - Clun Ramblers’ next walk is on Wednesday. Meet at Clun Memorial Hall car park at 9.30am. Sorry no dogs.

ROYAL BRITISH LEGION - Clun and District Branch of the Royal British Legion will meet on Wednesday at 7.30pm at Haslehurst community centre, Clun.

LIVE SHOW - The Kepow Theatre will be performing at Chapel Lawn village hall on February 15. Crazy Little Thing Called Love featuring two performers, is a comic look at love, in all its many forms. Suitable for age six and above, tickets adult £8, child £5, family £25. Starts at 7.30pm, enquiries 01547 530535 or


Far Forest

VILLAGE HALL COMMITTEE - Will be raising funds in aid of the British Heart Foundation tomorrow. From 6.30pm till 8pm tea, coffee, cakes and savouries will be available for sale. From 8pm there will be bingo for all to enjoy. Please stay and play. All proceeds from the bingo and the accompanying raffle will also go to the British Heart Foundation.

JUMBLE WANTED - Please contact Helen on 01299 266864, Pauline 01299 878581 or Carol on 01299 266566 if you have any jumble to donate to raise funds for the village hall.

VILLAGE HALL BOOKINGS - Can be made by contacting Carol on 01299 266566.


Richards Castle

SEQUENCE AND BALLROOM DANCE - Will be held in the village hall tomor - row from 8pm - 11.30pm, with Brian Link. Admission £3.50; all profits in aid of the Air Ambulance. For more details, please ring 01584 831439.

RED PARTY - Will be held in the village hall on Saturday from 8pm. Dress up and wear as much red as you can, to show support for the British Heart Foundation. Tickets £5 on the door; music for all tastes, bar and raffle. For more details, please contact 07791 533361.



SNOWDROP WEEKENDS - The snowdrops are in full bloom at the beautiful St Mary’s, Burford, so come and join the snowdrop weekends. Saturday and Sunday, 10am - 4pm. February 15 - 16, 1pm - 4pm. There will be refreshments served in the Bell Tower, also a sales table. All are welcome.

ROYAL BRITISH LEGION - The next meeting of the Tenbury Wells Branch will be held on the first floor of the Royal Oak on February 19 at 8pm.

NEED HELP TO STOP SMOKING? - Help is at hand on Friday mornings, 10am - 2pm at Tenbury library.

VOLUNTEERS WANTED - To help out with ‘community cuppa’ on Monday mornings, 11am - 1pm at Cafe 27, Teme St, Tenbury Wells. If you are interested, please contact Gill on 07515110888. Volunteers must be able to listen, chat and make tea.

TENBURY RAMBLING CLUB - Walking, friendly company, beautiful scenery and other social events. Contact Ian on 01584 876698.

VALENTINE’S QUIZ - Bockleton parish hall, WR15 8PU, February 14, 7.30pm. Bring a bottle, raffle. Tickets £5 including refreshments. Teams of four or come on your own and to be linked up with a team.


The Strettons

OPEN DAY - There is an invitation to members and non-members to Scrappies Scrapstore open day on Saturday from 10am - 2pm when there will be drop-in craft sessions for children and also cake decorating all with a Valentine’s theme. There will be a charge of £1.50 if taking part in the craft sessions.

CHURCH NEWS - The Methodist Church will be open from 10am - noon on Saturday for a drop-in for coffee and a chat or a quiet moment in the church, all welcome, and at St Laurence’s there is a reaffirmation of marriage vows service at 5pm. On Sunday St Laurence’s will be hosting Pitstop offering games, craft activi - ties, songs and a meal from 3pm - 5pm at the parish centre. Information about this event is available by ringing 01694 722588.

QUIZ NIGHT - Church Stretton District Social Club is the venue for a quiz night on Saturday starting at 7.45pm in aid of Blind Awareness.

LITERARY SOCIETY - The Literary Society meets at the library on Monday for a talk by Michael Basnett on the Teaching of English Literature in Schools Today at 7.30pm.

WIVES AND FRIENDS - The Methodist Wives and Friends group will be hosting a talk by Jean Huff on the subject of Keeping Alpacas as a Hobby on Tuesday at 7.30pm in the Methodist church hall. Everyone welcome, admission for non-members is £3, and for more information ring 01694 723567 or 722276.

COMMUNITY CINEMA - The Kid With a Bike (12) will be shown at All Stretton village hall on Tuesday at 8pm and Summer in February (15) is the film to be screened at Hope Bowdler village hall on Wednesday at 7.30pm. Moving to February 18, Acton Scott village hall will be showing Undertaking Betty (15) at 7.30pm.

SCHOOL NEWS - St Lawrence’s Primary School under 11 boys football team is through to the County Cup semi-final and the quiz club is through to the regional finals. The next challenges will be cross country at Lucton and at Lilleshall for the winter games. Pupils have also taken part in an African drumming workshop and there is a visit to Enginuity planned for class four before the half- term break. The art club is asking for donations of old shirts or aprons. A new greenhouse provided by the Friends of the School has appeared in the garden area and there is a thanks to those who gave their time for construction. If anyone can offer help maintaining it please speak to staff or call the school.

Church Stretton School students will be looking forward to their trip to Berlin and others will be taking part in a maths challenge. Parents and carers have been invited in to help celebrate the achievements of students at another of the principal’s afternoon teas.

UNA - The Church Stretton branch of the United Nations Association serves the whole of Shropshire and has a special concern for peace because the branch was served for almost 40 years by a secretary who received the MBE for her work for peace, although it works across a wide spectrum which also includes justice, human rights, fair trade and climate care working in partnership with organisations with similar aims.

The current project is raising money for disabled children in Haiti since their buildings were destroyed in the 2010 earthquake. Non-members are always welcome at the meetings usually held on Friday mornings of alternate months. Anyone who would like to attend should ring 01694 724171 to enquire for details.

COMMUNITY NEWS - Town clerk Mrs Christine Harvey has been awarded for her 31 years of commitment, dedication and support of the council. If anyone is anxious about the idea of sharing medical information they should contact the health centre for advice by ringing 01694 722129. Mr Bun’s Bakery has ‘an absolute place on the High Street’ following the recent competition.

Shropshire Council would like to hear from anyone who would like to take part in the budget survey which closes on Sunday by using the internet on customer, ringing 0345 678 9000 or writing to customer services at the Shirehall, Abbey Foregate, Shrewsbury, SY2 6ND.

POST OFFICE - The local post office will re-open after refurbishment at 1pm on February 14 with new opening hours including a post office serving point for use at the retail counter which will be available during shop opening hours.

LUCKY NUMBERS - Lucky numbers in the Mayfair Lottery for January were 448, 567, 280, and six winning £100, £50, £20 and £10 respectively.

FOLK DANCE - The monthly folk dance at Ticklerton village hall will be held on February 15, from 8pm till late. A fun evening with Dot and Ron there to show the way it is done so no experience is necessary. Ring 01694 722418 to find out more.

WILDLIFE - The Shropshire Wildlife Trust will host a meeting at the Methodist church hall on February 19, when the speaker will be Baz Fewster, Shropshire Wildlife Trust Ambassador and a published poet, who will take as his subject Is nature safe in our hands? Admission for non-members is £3 and to book in for the event ring 01694 722361.

MUSIC NIGHTS - Friday night at the Horne presents New Rope String band at the Silvester Horne Institute on February 21 at 7.30pm. Ticket sales are through Burway Books, John Thomas Florist or town council offices. For more information ring 01694 720132. February 22, Robbie Williams tribute night at the District Social Club with Robbie T Disco, 8.30pm to late, no admission after 10.30pm . Tickets £8 from the club, over 18s.

RNLI - Committee is planning a social evening at the Silvester Horne Institute on March 1 at 7.15pm with a fish and chip supper. Tickets £8.50.


Ditton Priors WI

LAST month’s meeting was the social evening of which included a whist drive. Members, friends and hus - bands all took part in playing whist and lots of fun was had by all. The hostesses for the evening supplied lovely plates of sandwiches and cakes and members are now feeling a little fatter for the repast. Tea and coffee were also supplied. Lots and lots of goodies were in the raffles.

The next meeting is on Wednesday and the speaker is Mrs Jo Blizzard from SCC Waste Management Team with a talk entitled Love Food Hate Waste. For anyone wishing to come, the meeting commences at 7.15pm. You will be made very welcome.


Shropshire Smallholders Group

THE Shropshire Smallholders group will be meeting on Thursday at Leebotwood village hall when there will be a talk on the general care of ducks and geese by Graham Hicks who will also speak about the various breed specialities. Members will also have the opportunity to exchange items, sell their smallholder produce and enquire for items wanted and there is always much useful information to be gained from the meetings.

Visitors and guests are always welcome for a small entrance charge.


South West Shropshire Gardening Club

ON January 22 there was a packed hall full of gardeners in need of inspiration during the month of mud and rain. As the talk by Kristian Hickson- Booth progressed it became clear that she was not going to give members any quick fix solutions to their own gardens. However, members did receive a fascinating insight of the processes involved which could inspire keen, DIY, creative souls who would prefer to try out their own ideas (possibly at considerably less expense and far more fun) and members were encouraged by the statement “There is no right or wrong”. If you prefer to pay for a more expert approach then contact three local designers with a range of experience and personalities. Prepare about five questions to ask, such as: What are your favourite plants? What horticul - tural experience do you have? Do you see the project through to the end? Do you source the plants? Do not expect the project to happen overnight if you want a well thought out design. An initial consultation should take between one and three hours; the survey may take half a day; the concept plan should take about four to six weeks (rather than something produced instantly on a computer); allow a few days for walk - ing round your site thinking about the concept and once that is agreed, the planting scheme will take longer than the concept plan. On February 26, members are off to Ashwood Nurseries. There are two tickets left (£10 each), contact Heather on 01588 650610.


Stretton and Shropshire Cancer Care Group

THE group’s monthly meeting takes place at Mayfair community centre on Monday at 2.30pm caring for people who have cancer, and their relatives and friends. The speaker will be Dr Marilyn Owens on the subjects of Emotional Aspects of Living with Cancer. Dr Owens is the Macmillan Clinical Psychologist in Shropshire, providing a county-wide service to cancer patients and their families and carers, both in acute and pallia - tive care settings. Stretton and Shropshire Cancer Care Group also has a ‘befriender’ volunteer at Mayfair for those who would like someone to talk to for a few minutes, and is usually there every third Thursday morning between 10am and lunchtime. Ring 01694 751288 if you would like to find out more.

Thanks to those who helped and supported the Christmas bazaar which raised £838.05.