Henley NEWS On-line


Reporting Each Week on Events In and Around
Henley-in-Arden, Warwickshire, England

Masthead picture - Vivid yellow field of oil seed rape.
Photo Dawn Leech

Edition 155 - 10th May 2007
Every Thursday
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Landslide Victory for Laurence Marshall

Result for the Henley-in-Arden Ward

in the Stratford-on-Avon District Council election on Thursday 3rd May 2007.

MARSHALL, Laurence ThomasThe Conservative Party
1,252 Votes
PARSONS, Brett RogerUK Independence Party
134 Votes
RATCLIFFE, RosemaryLiberal Party
126 Votes
ABBOTT, JacqueleneThe Labour Party
116 Votes

Voter Turnout  1,628 ( 45%)

Chaos at the Count

Stratford-on-Avon District Council and Warwick District Council had submitted a joint application to the Department of Constitutional Affairs (DCA) for to take part in the election pilots this year. The joint application was approved by the DCA.

Both Councils proposed to use electronic scanning technology to count ballot papers and were working together utilising shared counting venues covering the combined area of the two authorities.

On Thursday night / Friday morning, Stratford District Council were forced to abandon their election count because of problems with electronic counting machines. Warwick District Council also had to abandon its count for the same reason. The ballot papers were counted by hand on Friday morning and Returning officer Paul Lankester pictured right announced the results. Stratford District Council leader Les Topham said: "It is always the same with new technology - if it works it is brilliant, if it doesn't everything collapses. Four of the six machines have broken down so we are going to have to come back later."

Our picture shows the Returning officer Paul Lankester announcing the result for the Henley ward, with Laurence Marshall on the right.

Stratford MP John Maples said: "I am delighted we won five extra seats. We got well over 50 per cent of the vote and all together its good news for the Conservatives."

Laurence Marshall writes...

Thank You!

To those who supported me on 3rd May let me express my thanks.

A massive increase in majority is made more pleasing by a significant increase in turnout demonstrating that despite disillusionment with politics at national level, local democracy is alive and kicking.

My responsibility now is to get on with the job and to serve all residents of the parishes of Beaudesert, Wootton Wawen and Henley in Arden no matter how they voted.

For me it is a great honour and I will continue to try my hardest to repay the confidence so many of you have placed in me.

Laurence Marshall

Weekly Rubbish Collections
The leader of Stratford District Council says he is “strongly opposed” to the fortnightly collection of household rubbish and would fight any plan to bring it in while still in office.

Cllr Les Topham (Cons, Sambourne) said: “The only way we’ll get fortnightly collections is if it’s forced on us by the government.”

He was responding to reports in the national press that Stratford District Council was among those local authorities throughout the country “considering” the highly-controversial introduction of fortnightly collections.

The Manor of Henley-in-Arden

Court Leet and Court Baron

Court Circular

Published by Authority of the High Bailiff

The Swan of Avon was born on 23rd April, 443 years ago. This year, 2007, the programme of celebrations of this event started on 18th April, with a lecture by Robert Bearman and finished on Monday 30th with a biographical conversation at the Shakespeare Centre. Through the next few days there were the usual planned walks, exhibitions and performances.

For the Bard’s home town of Stratford-upon-Avon the whole business of Shakespeare’s unrivalled contribution to English literature, drama, poetry and the language itself is a major local “industry”. This is never more in evidence than at the long weekend of the birthday celebrations, this time from Friday 27th to Sunday 29th April.

The High Bailiff and Ann Holding attended a series of the events and ceremonies taking place during that period, starting with the ceremony of Beating Retreat by the Band of the Corps of Royal Engineers in the pedestrianised arena of Henley Street. The evening was fine, the Engineers band crisp and immaculate and the selection of music quite captivating. As the sun sank with impeccable timing behind the neighbouring buildings the guests were treated to pieces from traditional marches, Bizet, Elgar, Bernstein and others, including the theme from Rocky, by Conti. The Mayor of Stratford, Cllr Dr Rev Roy Lodge MBE, entertained his guests at a reception in the Town Hall afterwards.

The next day, Saturday, opened with a reception at the Town Hall hosted by the President of the Shakespeare Birthday Celebrations, Rt Rev Colin Bennetts MA, Bishop of Coventry. The Beadle then summoned those present to form up for the main procession of the weekend, to unfurl the flags and banners representing the countries, Shakespeare’s plays, some universities and a variety of other bodies, along the streets.

Henley’s High Bailiff and Low Bailiff and their respective consorts were assigned the banner of the play “A Winter’s Tale”, at the bottom of Bridge Street – a choice they were entirely happy with! On a roll of drums from the Engineers, all the flags and banners were duly unfurled.

This colourful procession was in fact quite a relaxed and very cheerful affair. Many interesting contacts were made along the route including ambassadors and embassy staff from the participating countries. The robes of Henley’s bailiffs, being among the brighter things on view, attracted the cameras like bees round a honeypot! There were many good-humoured exchanges with the swelling crowd: the organisers were well pleased with the public response. About 24 countries were formally represented by those present. There was a total of 90 flag stations, situated in Henley Street, Union Street, High Street, Bridge Street and the Waterside. Hats off to the organisers, the Birthday celebrations Committee, and the many who helped them bring it all together. The procession proceeded to Holy Trinity Church to lay flowers on Shakespeare’s grave. The chancel was an explosion of colour. Then just after midday the guests made their way to the luncheon pavilion on Avonbank, a mighty marquee with seating for the 400-odd guests.

Speakers at this occasion were the President, Rt Rev Colin Bennett, Prof Kate McLuskie, Tim Supple, Sir Richard Eyre and His Excellency Mr Kamalesh Sharma, High Commissioner of India. It would be reasonable to expect a high standard of oratory at this gathering; no-one was disappointed!

On Saturday evening, by way of light relief, the High Bailiff and Ann were guests of Henley Cricket Club at their Dinner Dance. President John Latham’s great personal enthusiasm shone through the proceedings. His principle guest was Warwickshire and England left arm spin bowler Ashley Giles MBE, who showed great charm and endured a question-and-answer session with John with tact and humour. Ashley arrived on elbow crutches, being half way through some corrective treatment for a hip problem. We all wished him a speedy recovery: his country needs him! The club was obviously alive with young talent and the High Bailiff with Ashley Giles presented the trophies for the year’s performances.

Back to Stratford on Sunday 29th April for the “Shakespeare Sermon” at Holy Trinity, preceded by a breakfast reception at the Town Hall. The sermon – a challenging masterpiece - was delivered by Rt Rev Alastair Redfern, Bishop of Derby. The service included a multilingual extract from the “Dream”, by the Dash Arts Company, and a number of readings and musical items.

After all that, it was business as usual on the Monday. The High Bailiff attended, as a guest, Henley Rotary Club’s meeting at the Golf Club, where the guest speaker, Brian Wilson, a volunteer with Vintage Trains, described the new service due to start in July – the Shakespeare Express. He seemed to be speaking to a roomful of railway enthusiasts, perhaps one-time would-be train-drivers.

Finally, on the evening of Tuesday 1 May, while his consort in her other role showed a visiting group of adults round the Heritage Centre, the High Bailiff was a guest at the AGM and Dinner of the Tanworth Association for the Prosecution of Felons, held at Kings Norton Golf Club, here the guest speaker was Nick Owen of Midlands Today, the television news programme.

It’s been quite a week.
From the High Bailiff

To view the Court Leet website, go to www.henley-in-arden.org/court-leet

Joe Hardy, former Lord of the Manor, weds in Vagas

Reprinted from Las Vagas Sun - 6th May 2007

Joe Hardy (left), the multimillionaire founder of 84 Lumber and former Lord of the Manor of Henley-in-Arden, got married in Las Vegas on Saturday, a spokesman said.

Hardy, 84, a Fayette County commissioner, wed 22-year-old Kristin Georgi (right), who worked at the family's posh resort in southwestern Pennsylvania, spokesman Jeff Nobers said Sunday. Nobers did not provide any details of the wedding, the third for Hardy.

Georgi, who worked at the salon at the Nemacolin Woodlands Resort and Spa in Farmington, received an associate's degree in 2005 from Laurel Business Institute in Uniontown.

Hardy was married for more than 50 years to his first wife, Dorothy, his high school sweetheart, with whom he had five children. After the couple divorced in 1997, he married his second wife, Debra, an 84 Lumber employee. They had two daughters before that marriage also ended in divorce.

Hardy, who is seeking re-election as county commissioner this year, celebrated his 84th birthday in January with a bash at Nemacolin. The event included performances by comedian Robin Williams, Bette Midler and pop star Christina Aguilera, who sang "Happy Birthday" to Hardy.

Intruders Cause £2,000 of Damage in High Street

Intruders broke into a building site in High Street, Henley in Arden last week and caused £2,000 worth of damage.

Between 17.00hrs on Friday May 4 and 07.00hrs on Saturday May 5 offenders forced open the gate to the site and once inside started up a forklift truck which they attempted to drive through the gates, causing damage to the gates and the offside wheel and tyre of the truck.

They then threw stones at a digger, smashing its windows, and climbed onto scaffolding and smashed a large quantity of bricks.

Police in Alcester are investigating the incident and would like to hear from anyone who passed by the site during Friday night/Saturday morning and may have witnessed the incident.

Anyone with information is asked to contact Alcester police station on 01789 762207.

68% may be opposed to the Sports Shed Design

Warwickshire College has continued its PR campaign for the sports shed by addressing various groups in the town including the Henley and Beaudesert Society and the TIC (Town Improvement Committee). Henley NEWS On-line believes that the majority of the residents, who have a view on this matter, believe that the proposed structure is too tall and that the height should be reduced.

Despite agreeing at the open meeting on 18th April to provide Henley NEWS On-line with artist's impressions of their proposed development, nothing has yet been received. So that residents can judge the impact of this massive structure, Henley NEWS On-line has marked up photograph showing the approximate position and the approximate size of the building. It would be far more satisfactory if Warwickshire College would provide the promised artist's impression.

Opinions are hardening in the town against this development in the green belt in its present form. It is contary to the recommendations in the Village Design Statement which was prepared by 133 residents and published in June 2001. The Parish Plan of 2004 stated that 68% of the residents opposed any further Erosion of the Green Belt. If these expressions of local democracy mean anything, there can only be one outcome - rejection of the application for the current design.

Quick Guide to the Issues

Warwickshire College needs these facilities to continue obtaining grants so that it can remain financially viable.
Irrelevant to the planning application.
Warwickshire College does a good job training world class sports people.
Irrelevant to the planning application.
These new facilities can be used by the town at a commercial price.
Irrelevant to the planning application.
The pitch lighting has been improved and considerable tree planting has been undertaken.
Required by the planning authorities, to comply with previous planning consents.
The proposed development will be in an area designated as Green Belt.
True. 68% of the residents according to the Parish Plan 2004 oppose development in the Green Belt..
This development contravenes the recommendations in the Village Design Statement.
True. This community study was prepared over many months with contribution from 133 residents.
The height of the building should be significantly reduced.
True. Local residents have consulted experts who confirm that the building could be sunk in the ground.
If the building were sunk in the ground, it could not be used by disabled athletes.
Wrong. It would only require a 'Managed Access' policy.
Warwickshire College say they require 'better' facilities not 'additional' facilities.
The college should offer to demolish the present sports hall when a new hall is completed.

The Stratford District Council Planning Dept's website still shows this application as "Application Invalid On Receipt".

Current Advertising Signage

Whilst taking the picture above, our photographer noticed the untidy advertising signs on the side of the Stratford Road at the entrance to the car parking area. Many people would consider that the current signage is inappropriate at the southern entrance to our town. Should these now virtually permanent signs not have planning permission?

Christian Aid Week May 13-19

"It is not the will of God for some to have everything and for others to have nothing. This cannot be God."  So said Oscar Romero of El Salvador, assassinated in 1980 for speaking out against injustice.

The coming week is the annual door to door collection on behalf of Christian Aid. This year's focus for fundraising is a project in El Salvador which encourages people to get involved in, and take responsibility for, protecting and developing their own communities.  It’s work includes reducing the risks created by natural disasters. The changing climate is creating a situation that calls for an urgent response.  The increased frequency and intensity of hurricanes and subsequent flooding demonstrate the catastrophic effects that climate change is already having on some of the world's poorest people.

"Chus", pictured above, is a 15 year old who lives in an area of El Salvador prone to natural disasters and where hurricanes are a growing threat; the low-lying land is very susceptible to flooding. Chus has been brought up by his sister and her husband; he shares a hut with his brother and the family’s livestock. The hut was battered by hurricane Stan in 2005 and this has left holes in the roof.  The family survives on just a few dollars a day. Chus likes to get involved in the community in a practical way and has been working on strengthening the river bank with Christian Aid's partner organisation Aphrodehni in return for some food. 

A gift of just £6 to Christian Aid would enable Aphrodehni to clean a well after a flood. However, your support will also be paying for the education and training of the local community - people who can make a difference, particularly young people like Chus.
The red Christian Aid envelopes have already been delivered, as usual in the May Parish newsletter. Please give as generously as you can, Gift-aided where possible, since this increases the amount by 28%. This way you can help poor communities around the world grow a better future.

John & Cilla Pudney - Christian Aid Week organisers

Henley-in-Arden Methodist Church Anniversary

June is the month when each year, we celebrate our anniversary, another year when Methodism has continued active in Henley. We seek to serve our Lord Jesus Christ by the proclamation of His Gospel, both in our worship, and in our own lives, confident that Christianity is an expression of God's truth and of benefit to all humanity.

Our anniversary will be on Sunday 24th, Revd Caroline Homan, the minister at Evesham will preach, and we follow the service with lunch in the schoolroom.

Sunday Services, all at 11.00 am are: 3rd, Miss Ann Hudson. 10th, Mr Alan Cooper. 17th, Revd Frank Himsworth. 24th, Revd Caroline Homan (Church Anniversary).

James Steele

Midsummer Soiree at Uplands House - 24th June


By kind permission of Dr Douglas & Mrs Susan Bridgewater, we are delighted to invite you to a very special event in a lovely setting on Midsummer Day at 5.00pm.


Amelia Whiteman and Sarah McDowall, two of New Zealands leading young musicians are coming to Henley-In-Arden to entertain you in one of the town’s most beautiful garden settings.


They will be accompanied by the London String Trio.  Included in the ticket price of £19.50 is wine and canapés.  Dress is smart / casual. 


The proceeds are for the girls’ favourite charity, Cure Leukaemia, based at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital.  We are raising funds for the new leukaemia centre which requires £3 million to support its world class clinical research programme.


Why don’t you come along to enjoy a very special occasion and make a difference in the lives of patients with leukaemia.


John Latham

Local Businesses Support Unusual Competition.

This week an unusual free entry competition was launched to find Henley’s smallest Carbon Footprints.

17 attractive prizes have been donated by over a dozen local businesses; the two top prizes each being worth £150.

Entries are being invited from large, medium and small households and those with the smallest carbon footprints will be the winners in each size category. It’s not as difficult as a crossword competition and there seems to be a much better chance of winning! Just look out your gas and electricity bills and how many miles your car did last year.

Even teenagers can enter (with parents’ permission) and there are prizes such as a free trip to Alton Towers. Competition entry is free; can’t be bad.

All those interested in entering can Click Here to Download the full details of prizes and how to enter or pick up an entry form at various businesses around the town.

Aston Cantlow Church in the Headlines Again

Aston Cantlow Church Council has come under fire for refusing to accommodate 300 scouts amid apparent fears they might burn themselves on a radiator. The youngsters were due to parade through Aston Cantlow to celebrate St George's Day on April 22 before attending a service at the village's Church of St John the Baptist.

However, just two weeks earlier and after the event had already been advertised and leaflets dropped through hundreds of doors, the scouts had to make a sudden of change of plan. The church council responsible for St John the Baptist had refused to let them use the building, apparently without notifying them, because of health and safety fears.

Andy Morris, group scout leader for the 1st Wilmcote Scouts, said he called Aston Cantlow's vicar, the Reverend David Addley, to check the arrangements, but was instead told the church council had refused permission.

"We held the parade in Aston Cantlow four years ago," he explained."Apparently the church had some complaints from parents, one being that someone had burnt their leg on a radiator. Because of that, in case it happened again, they refused to accommodate us. We were disappointed to put it mildly, we were gob smacked. We were completely unaware there had ever been a problem."

The same church council has been criticised in recent months for its decision to pursue Andrew and Gail Wallbank through the courts because an ancient law declares them 'lay rectors' to the church and therefore responsible for its repairs.

The parent of one scout commented: "They want people to sell their homes to pay for repairs to the church so it is perfect but they won't even let children into it. It is disgraceful."

Mr Morris said the matter was out of Rev Addley's hands and added he was very helpful in re-arranging the parade. It went ahead in Wilmcote - but under more difficult circumstances. A police presence was needed to close roads and the village's church was too small so Mary Arden's House had to step in.

The church council refused to comment and the Rev Addley was unavailable for comment.

Reprinted from The Stratford Observer.

To Read Previous Editions Back to 29th October 2004       Click Here

Henley High Governors' Report

In his May report Peter Crathorne, Chairman of the Governors, said, "This term the governors will be setting out the plans for developing and improving the school over the next three years.

"Senior staff are working hard to finalise their proposals which will be considered in June. Their will be five main areas of focus and every member of staff will be asked to play their part in delivering these changes. Each governor will be given a department of the school to monitor.

"They will meet with heads of departments to gauge the progress of the plans on a regular basis. These discussions will be reported to Governors’ meetings. In this way it is hoped that we shall be improving from the school from good to excellent."

Read the full report

Henley Cricket Club Dinner

Kay and I were privileged to attend the annual Henley Cricket Club Dinner which was held on Saturday, 28 April, at the Henley Golf and Country Club. Our pleasure was enhanced by sharing a well placed table with Rotarian friends and members of their families.

The Guest of Honour at this event was that grand servant of Warwickshire and England, Ashley Giles MBE. That he was able to attend at all, albeit on crutches, was a tribute to his grit and determination, given that he had only returned within some 24 hours from the USA, following yet another operation after his injury had flared up again. Unfortunately, his wife Stine was unable to be with him, as she was still recuperating from her own recent operation.The packed evening programme was masterminded and guided by long serving Club President, John Latham. The excellent meal was followed by toasts to the Queen, by Chairman John Smith, and the Ladies, by President John. A presentation of Cricket Awards, made by Ashley Giles and the High Bailiff of Henley, Ray Holding, was well received and was followed by a hilarious auction of sporting memorabilia, conducted by President John and raising no less than £550.

Now came what we had all been waiting for – a celebrity interview of Ashley Giles by John Latham, Henley’s answer to Michael Parkinson. In truth, they formed a terrific combination, with Ashley giving compelling responses to John’s rapier like questions. Ashley was not afraid to give patient, straightforward answers to issues involving the England team, its personalities and its recent performances. There was much to savour and we were all very fortunate to hear such a lucid and authoritative speaker, who also dealt diplomatically with questions from the audience. Well done Ashley and John!

A great evening was rounded off by drawing the raffle and a Disco that was popular with the (generally) younger elements.

We now all look forward to this coming season and next year’s Annual Dinner!

John Lock

New Offices for Abrasive Site

KWB, office property specialists of Birmingham, have announced that the new offices to be built on the old Abrasive Developments site at the north of the town will be available for occupation in early 2008.

There will be 10 self contained office buildings offering accommodation from 1,227 sq ft to 2,863 sq ft available on a freehold basis. The agents say they will be built and specified to a very high standard.

This new development which may bring as many as 60 new jobs to Henley is to be welcomed. Over the last ten years, Henley has lost more than 750 jobs.

Further details from John Bryce of KWB at : space@kwboffice.com

Subscribe to Henley NEWS on-line

John Garner's Business Column

Smoking – or joking?

John GarnerOf course we all know that, from 1st July, smoking in virtually all enclosed public places and vehicles will be banned in England. You did realise this includes vehicles – didn't you?

But if you are an employer you should now have received a brochure from the Government entitled "Everything you need to know to prepare for the new Smokefree law on 1 July 2007". Accompanying this is an A2 size poster and some sample signs.

If you are an employer and you've received this do, please, read it carefully as there are draconian penalties for infringing the rules. You will have to demonstrate that you have taken the steps necessary to prevent people smoking in your premises or your work vehicles. So no designated smoking areas inside please, although you can have an outside smoking area so long as it conforms to certain regulations.

In fact you can allow smoking in a work vehicle if it is only ever used by one person, surprisingly. I think it would be much more sensible to ban smoking whilst driving any vehicle at any time as it's downright dangerous – but no.

These no smoking rules can also apply to your home if any part of it is used for work by "more than one person who does not live at the dwelling" or if "members of the public attend to deliver or to receive goods and/or services". Invasion of privacy or what?

Note that you must display the correct signage "in a prominent position at every entrance to smokefree premises". In your company vehicles you must display a sign in "each compartment of the vehicle in which people are carried". This all may seem easy, but you must make sure they are the correct signs or you will be liable to a fixed penalty fine of £200! Can you believe it? You get fined more for not displaying the correct signs that you do for actually smoking (£50)!

You may just notice here that the onus is much more upon you, the employer, to prevent smoking rather than on the individual to not smoke. There will be a freephone telephone line available so people can report breaches of the law – so you are going to be spied on as well!

Presumably this will result in a visit from the police who will have to take time off from catching criminals…. oh sorry – disobeying these new laws is a criminal offence, so you will then be a criminal anyway! Alternatively councils may appoint enforcement officers – so that's an other increase to your council tax then.

Reading this, you might think I approve of smoking, but I certainly don't. I'm an inveterate anti-smoker and I look forward to smoke free pubs and restaurants but I do resent being made responsible in law for other people's behaviour.

There's a lot more detail than I've space for here, so if you really want to know more you can visit www.smokefreeengland.co.uk if you can bear to trawl through it all or ring the information line on 0800 169 1697.

John Garner

The Nigel Hastilow Column

Vote BNP get Old Labour at its worst

Nigel HastilowThe view from Tipton Sports Academy was of a disappointingly good night for Labour – thanks mainly to the racist BNP. Members of the right-wing party swarmed through the building, apparently outnumbering the supporters of the other parties.

Their show of force did not translate into winning seats. But as the counting progressed it was obvious, in ward after ward, that Labour candidates were getting re-elected thanks mainly to a strong showing by the BNP.

Sandwell’s Conservative candidates, who arrived at the count feeling optimistic, went home somewhat downhearted and disappointed. When you’re stuck in a giant indoor tennis court watching people counting crosses on pieces of paper, you’re cut off from the rest of the world. No TV, no radio; even mobile phones were banned. So it was only later that we discovered what was happening elsewhere. And the verdict is much the same in across the West Midlands. While the Conservative Party did excellently – with more seats in Birmingham than at any time since 1983 – in the West Midlands anyway, David Cameron can’t point to the kind of spectacular gains some people were expecting. The Liberal Democrats had a mildly poor night but nothing drastic. The fringe parties, including the BNP, actually fared badly.

The biggest loser, the Labour Party, was able to suffer one of its worst local election performances ever and still emerge with some consolation. Even so, it was a bad-tempered night for Labour. Several councillors were expecting to lose their seats. A few did. Survivors were so surprised they stayed angry even when they’d won. They accepted congratulations with all the graciousness of a snarling hyena. There was talk of vote-rigging skulduggery but whether it will come to anything remains to be seen.

The voters had a chance last night to deliver a final verdict on the Blair years. With the Prime Minister promising the long-anticipated announcement of his departure next week, this was everybody’s chance to see him off with his tail between his legs. It has been such a difficult time for the Labour Party that most people assumed the voters would take the opportunity to deliver a fond farewell by kicking Tony Blair firmly in the ballots. Instead, because Labour has only done as badly as everyone expected, the party can console itself by pretending the results could have been worse. Even now, Labour spin seems to work. By managing expectations of catastrophe, a mere disaster suddenly doesn’t seem so bad.

Tony Blair is not exactly leaving on a high. Labour’s share of the vote was stunningly low compared with his past triumphs. Yet, for all that, it wasn’t absolutely disastrous across the local authorities of England – though Labour mainly lost seats the party still managed to pick up one or two here and there.

The results in Scotland and Wales may have a longer-term significance for a party which relies on the voters of those two countries to maintain it in power at Westminster. The rise of the Scottish Nationalists, at a time when Britain is about to get a very Scottish Prime Minister in Gordon Brown (Tony Blair is also a Scot but somehow nobody seems to notice) presents Labour with serious trouble in its own back-yard. Pundits will now pore over the results of last night’s elections to determine what the likely outcome of the next General Election may be. If the voting patterns were reproduced at a General Election, David Cameron would waltz into Downing Street.

Instead, it is, of course Gordon Brown who approaches Number 10. His party is in as bad a state as it has been since the days when Michael Foot was leader and Birmingham last had a majority Conservative council. Whether Mr Brown can repair the damage caused by the last two years of drift and disaster under Tony Blair remains to be seen. But he can pretend to himself and the rest of us that the 2007 local elections were just the usual mid-term reversal faced by every government.

Or, as one one victorious Labour councillor in Sandwell so eloquently put it: “The BBC can shove it up their arse.”

Nigel Hastilow      

Grumpy Old Man Comments

Art (with or without the F)

The 2007 Turner Prize nominations have been announced.

  1. Zarina Bhimji : a group of photos of Uganda, over an 8 year period
  2. Nathan Coley : a cardboard church
  3. Mike Nelson : immersive installations that transport the viewer to imaginary, yet plausible worlds. ( I don’t know what it means either)
  4. Mark Wallinger : a copy of Brian Haw’s protest banners and paraphernalia outside Westminster.

Is this what Art is all about?  I know it is an expression of what the artist see’s, feel’s or thinks, but come on lets get real.

A good piece of art should represent something. What I call ‘Old’ art is where you can actually see the subject in the painting or see the figure in the statue. But anyone can take a photo of Uganda (if you have been there), a cardboard church, they sell cardboard model kits in Toys R Us, copying someone elses protest (not very original eh?). And as for an ‘Immersive Installation’ it sounds good but what is it.

Maybe I’ll try and make a statement with the re-cyling in my fortnightly black box collection. Here we have a collection of bake bean tins surrounded by junk mail, all lying between Tesco’s beer and wine bottles.

Modern art is lost on me, it is a complete waste of human effort, time and resourses. I prefer nice pictures, statues, even cartoons, and some good photos, but there again I’m old ! On a serious note though, the contents of my black re-cycling box are available every 2 weeks, serious offers around £20,000 will be considered.


Grumpy Old Man

For the most Comprehensive Information about Henley-in-Arden

Visit Henley-in-Arden's Gateway Website at www.henley-in-arden.org

Make Henley Greener
Save Money - Help Save the Planet

This week we've launched our free entry competition.

See news article above.

For more information about the Make Henley Greener project, click here.

John Stott

District Council Information

Planning Applications - Search on-line at Stratford District Council
When you are on the Planning Dept site. Select 'APPLICATION SEARCH' from menu on left.
On the next page, enter the Parish as 'Henley' and put in the date range the last two months and press 'Search'

Stratford on Avon District Council Website


Alerts from Trading Standards

Car Boot Sales - Could You Be In For More Than You Bargained?

As the May bank holidays approach and the weather improves, what better place to pick up a bargain then at a car boot sale?

CD's, DVD's perfumes, toys and designer clothes are just some of the items that can be picked up for what you think is a bargain price – but do you really know what you are getting?

Warwickshire County Council Trading Standards Service together with Consumer Direct West Midlands lets you in on the tricks of the counterfeit trade so you don’t get ripped off.

What you think you are getting: The latest DVD/CD

The reality: The CD/DVD you have brought is likely to be of poor quality, the sound may be distorted or the picture unclear. Not only will this ruin your listening/viewing pleasure but you will have wasted your money! If you had bought the items from a reputable supplier – you may possibly have got a refund or exchanged it if the quality was not right. Traders at car boot sales move around – and the likelihood is that if you did have a problem, they wouldn’t be there next time to complain to. What you didn’t bargain for is that counterfeits can damage and corrupt your DVD/CD player or laptop when playing them.

What you think you are getting: A genuine branded item – e.g. perfumes, clothes.

The reality: Often counterfeiters will spend their money on creating realistic looking packaging – the contents however may be nothing like the real thing. A range of cheap ingredients/materials are used to make the goods look convincing but you can't guarantee what is in them or how safe they are for you to use.

What you think you are getting: A bargain - as the price looks too good to be true

The reality: The quality of counterfeit goods is often very poor. The material of the clothes and the embroidery may look ok, but when placed next to an original the fake becomes obvious.

You may still be spending a reasonable amount of money on these items, which are not the real thing. Remember – the goods could also be stolen, even if you didn’t know they were it is a criminal offence being in receipt of them.

Mark Ryder, Head of Warwickshire County Council Trading Standards Service said: One of the biggest risks to consumers who buy any counterfeit goods such as perfumes, toys, alcohol or cigarettes is their safety and that of their families. What people don’t realise is that the people often producing the counterfeit spend the money on producing convincing packaging so that people think they are getting the genuine article. In fact, the proceeds from what look like harmless 'fakes' are supporting criminal activity.

Remember – Counterfeiting is illegal, and counterfeiters don’t care. If it sounds too good to be true, it usually is.

If you are concerned that your local car boot is being ruined by people selling counterfeit items or you think you have bought counterfeit goods please call Consumer Direct on 08454 040506, or visit our website at www.consumerdirect.gov.uk.

And always remember - if it looks too good to be true, it probably is!

Trading StandardsSimon Cripwell
Senior Information Officer
Warwickshire County Council Trading Standards Service

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Henley Diary Dates

The following diary dates have been notified to Diane Bayley at 6 St John's Close. All diary dates for the next Henley Diary Dates should be sent to Diane at: stjohnnews@btinternet.com. Articles and news stories for Henley NEWS on-line should be sent to the editor@henleynews.co.uk at any time.

Tony Beysens from the Farming and Wildlife Advisory Group is giving an illustrated talk “Farming and Wildlife” at our meeting on Tuesday 15th May in the Baptist Church Hall from 7.45 p.m. Visitors are welcome - £1. Details will be given about outdoor meetings which start next month.

Tuesday 22nd May, 7.45 p.m. at Ullenhall Village Hall. Our speaker, Roger Umpelby will be giving a talk on “A Plant Lover’s View of New Zealand”. Competition: Primula in a Pot. Visitors (£1) are always welcome. Tuesday 29th May, evening visit to a Henley Garden, contact Diane 793903 for further details.

Hanging Basket Competition – we have some wonderful floral displays in the town thanks to a dedicated team of volunteers. Can you provide additional colour by putting up a hanging basket? Open to all private residences, pubs, shops and businesses (and not just on the High Street!). Application forms available from the Vanity Box. Enquiries to 793903.

9th June from 2.00 p.m. at the Village Hall. Traditional and new attractions for all the family. Antiques Roadshow; Magician; Nintendo WII Competition; Skittle Alley; Face Painting; Football Target; Refreshments.

Wootton Wawen Primary School and fete is on Saturday 23rd June 12-2pm.

Volunteers are needed to assist in providing meals for the elderly in Henley and district. Deliverers are required to distribute meals on Tuesdays or Thursdays and kitchen helpers for Lunch Club at Dell Court on Tuesdays. Can you spare a couple of hours a month to help? If so, please telephone Peta on 01789 298236.

Jazz in the Garden – Saturday 21st July
Barn Dance and Supper – Saturday 20th October
Information on these events from Marijana or Duncan Bainbridge 793539/794987.

The Mikado in Tanworth – 20th & 21st July in Tanworth Village Hall. Rehearsals on 22nd & 29th May (tenors and basses) and 5th June (full chorus), Tanworth Village Hall, 7.45 p.m. Details from Wendy Dillon 742464.

Henley and Wootton Scouts Bonfire Night – Saturday 3rd November 2007. Further details from John Johnson 792073

Open to members (juniors and adults) of any standard. Full time coach. 7 courts open throughout the year mean that there is always a court available. No need to book. Club and American Tournaments held during summer months. League matches summer and winter. For details of membership please contact Judith Mathias 01564 792378
Evergreen ClubMeetings are held on the first Wednesday of the month in the Parish Hall, Beaudesert Lane at 2.15 p.m. The Club has around 80 members and organises a varied programme together with various outings. If you are interested in joining, please contact Gordon Trinder.
Meets Friday and Sunday from September to May in the Memorial Hall. Details contact Alan Barber on 793320. Thursday evenings from 7.30 –9.30 pm at Henley Community Primary School. Details please ring Pauline Barber on 793320.
Henley Cricket Club fields two teams in the Cotswold Hills League on a Saturday, and two teams in friendly fixtures on Sundays, from mid-April to mid-September. We are always on the lookout for new players, irrespective of age or ability. Anyone interested in joining our club should contact Kevin O'Brien on 01564-794903.
meets on Monday evenings from April to September at 6.30pm and plays until it is dark. The club is situated next to the Tennis Courts at the Sports and Social club ground on the A34 just outside Henley. The Club welcome new members, whether beginners or established players. For further information contact John Townson 01564 792407.
There are still vacancies in some areas of Henley-in-Arden for NEIGHBOURHOOD WATCH Co-ordinators. If you are aware that  you are not covered in your area or are willing to be a co-ordinator. Please contact Annette Walker on 792837
Holds its monthly lunchtime meeting on third Thursday of each month from 11.30am to 2.15pm at the Henley Golf Club. There is a one hour networking session followed by a quality lunch and a informative speaker on a business topic. Full details at www.swbc.co.uk
Meets at the Golf Club on Monday evenings at 7pm.
New members are always welcome.
Please call: Robin Freeman on 01789 765411 or email robinf@ribi.org
Plays Duplicate Bridge of intermediate standard on Tuesday evenings at the the White Swan Hotel and usually find time for a tipple, which may or may not improve our play!!. Play commences at 7.15 promptly. There are normally 5 - 8 tables and the club does not issue master points.
For further information please contact the Secretary - Christine Whitehouse on 01564 792993.
Please tell all your friends about The Henley Diary. Events for future Henley Diary Dates should be sent to Diane Bayley at 6 St John's Close marked ‘Henley Diary’ email: stjohnnews@btinternet.com

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Henley NewsHenley NEWS on-line is looking for additional correspondents to send in stories and pictures. Why don't you become one of our correspondents and send in stories about your area, your club, your school or events you have witnessed. Please always try to include a photo in jpg or png format. Letters, articles, pictures to the Editor are always welcome. Please do not use the following file formats 'Publisher" or 'Serif'. 'Microsoft Word' is the preferred format. Please send to editor@henleynews.co.uk

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