Henley NEWS Online

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

Campaigning for a better Henley

Edition 244 - 8th April 2010
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Winner 2007 & Gold 2009
on Thursdays

Beaudesert Parish By-Election



Sue writes to the Electors of Beaudesert on the eve of Polling Day

Firstly, a brief background so you can understand where I "fit in" with Beaudesert.

In 1976 I moved into Pinks Farm, Beaudesert with my husband and 3 year old son. I lived there for 33 years and had 2 more children. I have always been interested in Parish Council matters although raising a family, looking after a smallholding and then starting and running my own business kept me fully occupied. By April 2005 my business had grown sufficiently to enable my husband to leave his "proper" job and join me full time. Sadly, 6 weeks later he died and I had no choice but to sell the business. By then my 3 children had all flown the nest so I decided to sell the farm/business and move into The Croft, Henley.

In the past I helped to establish with Marion Fox the “free jig-saw library” in the Methodist Church Hall and I am currently a volunteer Steward at the Heritage Centre. I am a great supporter of the work that the Hub (youth club) does and have recently been appointed a member of its management committee.

Secondly, an explanation of why I am standing for election to the Parish Council.

From attending public Parish Council meetings and having listened to residents during my door knocking over the last two weeks, I have identified numerous issues that residents are concerned about. The above leaflet gives several examples of issues I would like the JPC to address and by joining the JPC, if elected, I would hope to influence my fellow Councillors in a constructive and positive manner.

On an ongoing basis, my other commitment of course is to assist any resident with problems they may have.

I am not ashamed of saying that I have no experience of being a Parish Councillor; there has to be a first time for everything. I'm hoping that a fresh, enthusiastic and independent approach and a reasonably good business sense will help me to contribute positively to the town and all its residents.

Sue Osborne

What Cost Local Democracy?

Sitting at my desk on Saturday 3rd April, I was forwarded an e-mail which allegedly originated from a member of the JPC complaining about a “News Flash” from Henley NEWS Online on 16th March.

I find it difficult to understand the statement that Cllr Bill Leech forced an election for Beaudesert at a cost of £1,500. This ignores the fact that there is already a groundswell of opinion of no confidence in the JPC, which was elected uncontested in the last 2 elections. In Henley News Online's recent poll on the conduct of the JPC towards the “Curtain Shop”, there were 141 votes against the JPC’s conduct and only 1 in support. The number of letters presented to Stratford District Council requesting an election for the Beaudesert casual vacancy was 16, not 11 as stated in the email. In reality only 10 requests are required to stop the JPC from co-opting.

Sue Osborne was first to lodge her nomination papers for the Beaudesert vacancy. The cost of an uncontested election would have been £100 but as retired Councillor George Atkinson, a resident of Wootton Wawen, decided he would also stand, this caused the cost of the election to increase to £1,500. Should we complain because 2 people are interested enough to represent the residents of Beaudesert?

At the same time, the Chief Executive of Stratford District Council received 46 letters from residents expressing dissatisfaction and no confidence in the Chairman of the JPC, the Parish Clerk and certain councillors and requesting an early election.

More recently, a casual vacancy for Henley has occurred with the resignation of Sheila Dalman. Thirty one residents immediately requested an election by submitting letters to SDC. Again, only 10 were required. The cost of an uncontested election will only be £100 unless a second candidate comes forward. If this is the  case, they will have the moral authority of having votes cast in their favour.  At this moment a unique situation in Henley.  

In answer to their moans and groans about costs, the JPC should stop wasting our money on such things as websites that will bring little or no benefit to the average resident, reduce the exorbitant cost of a full time Parish Clerk and on the ongoing battles with local clubs and societies. These are the facts as I see them.

We must not forget that there is a cost to democracy and it is everybody's right to ask for an election and to be represented by the person the majority choose. We must not be complacent about being told we cannot afford it. The alternative can be seen in many other parts of the world. No one should be denied their voting rights under English law because of cost.

This is not my idea of democracy. Is it yours?  We ignore these points at our peril.

Resident of Henley

MPs Criticise Local Authority Newsletters

imageThe Office of Fair Trading should investigate the impact council-funded free newspapers are having on regional papers, a committee of MPs has said. The Culture, Media and Sport Committee said it was concerned about the growing number of council papers and the effect they were having on local democracy. Many local papers have closed in recent years with some editors blaming the effect of council-funded publications. Research from the Newspaper Society last year found that nine in 10 councils now print their own newspaper.

Paul Burstow, the Liberal Democrat MP for Sutton and Cheam, led a debate on the issue in Westminster earlier this year in which he highlighted the impact that council newspapers, funded by local taxpayers, were having on the health of the independent local press.

In the report by the Culture, Media and Sport Committee on the future for local and regional media, committee chairman John Whittingdale said the industry was facing "unprecedented challenges".

'Political propaganda'
He said: "This has led to the closure of a large number of newspapers, many commercial radio stations becoming loss-making and the possible end of regional news on commercial television. This has serious implications for local democracy." While it was important for local authorities to communicate with their citizens, it was "unacceptable" that councils could set up publications in direct competition to local newspapers and "act as a vehicle for political propaganda", he said.

The MPs recommended making it mandatory for publications to clearly state on their front page that they are published by a local authority.

Joint Parish Council to Increase Expenditure on its Newsletter
Cllr George Matheou has successfully proposed to the Parish Council that it should increase the number of editions of its Newsletter to 6 per year from the present 4. This is despite Henley being well served by regional and local publications such as the Stratford Herald,  Stratford Observer, Henley Focus and Henley NEWS Online. This 50% increase in costs will have to be met from the precept (parish council tax). The January 2010 edition of the JPC Newsletter, which wished readers a "Happy New Year", was circulated on 20th February 2010.

Over recent years the Parish Council's Newsletter seems to have contained little information which has not already appeared in other local media. Furthermore, the editions are not approved by the full council before publication. This lack of full council oversight also extends to the council's website and press releases.

Henley Golf & Country Club Acquires Henley Hotel


imageHenley Golf & Country Club has just completed the purchase of the 30 bedroom Henley Hotel. The Best Western Henley Hotel will provide the much needed bedrooms that are required to support the flourishing Weddings, Conference and Golf Day business that has been developed.

Over the next few months we will be assessing the potential and developing our plans for significant future improvement and refurbishment.

Ray Chamberlain, proprietor of Henley Golf Club, said: “We are absolutely thrilled with this acquisition – we believe that Henley is crying out for a quality hotel venue and look forward to outlining our exciting new plans for development over the coming months”.

Kate Allen, Sales and Marketing Manager, told Henley NEWS Online, "Henley Golf & Country Club is such a popular Wedding & Events venue - the only drawback has been the lack of accommodation.  Now we have the Best Western Henley Hotel under our umberella which is just a stone's throw away, and with the addition of our complimentary mini-bus constantly shuttling guests between the two venues we will literally have bedrooms on our doorstep.  We are really excited about what the future holds".

District By-election in Henley-in-Arden

SDCAs well as the District Council elections in 18 wards across Stratford-on-Avon District on Thursday 6 May 2010 there will also be 2 further by-elections with the resignations of Cllr Lawrence Marshall from Henley-in-Arden and Cllr Bob White from Shipston-on-Stour.

Cllr Lawrence Marshall has been a District Councillor for Henley-in-Arden since 2006 and Cllr Bob White has been a District Councillor for Shipston-on-Stour since 2002.

The District wards up for elections this year are Alcester, Bidford & Salford, Brailes, Harbury, Kinwarton, Long Compton, Long Itchington, Quinton, Sambourne, Snitterfield, Southam, Stratford Alveston, Stratford Avenue and New Town, Stratford Guild and Hathaway, Studley, Tanworth, Vale of the Red Horse, Wellesbourne.

The District Council elections take place on Thursday 6 May 2010 with polling stations opening from 7am to 10pm.

Nominations for the District elections close at 12 noon on Thursday 8 April.

District residents can still register to vote by Tuesday 20 April.

Henley Town Crier at Alcester Competition

picture It was a busy Easter weekend in Alcester as the town played host to the Heart of England Town Criers' competition on Easter Saturday. Town criers from all over the Midlands took part in the annual contest. Henley-in-Arden was represented by the Town Crier Gordon Trinder.

Twenty five criers from various parts of the country were present to take part in the competition. A draw took place to  put the criers in order of their call. Gordon was drawn at number 16 and he was very pleased at not being drawn number 1. Following this, all the criers headed by the Warwickshire trio paraded through the Town of Alcester with all ringing their bells with many different sounds. It was then back to Malt Mill lane  for the competition to start.

Gordon told Henley NEWS Online, "This was my first attempt in a competition so as the time approached for me to make my call the nerves started to set in. However once I got started I did my cry which was well received by those watching. Sorry to say that I could not bring the trophy home as there were some very experienced criers taking part. The winner overall being Peder Neilson of Bromyard with Owen Collier of Wootton Bassett second. I understand that I was high in the order for the best dressed crier being won by Peter Dauncey from Melksham."

Gordon added, "For myself, I enjoyed the experience and will be taking part again and who knows one day I might be number one."

Cricket Club Dinner

Henley Cricket Club held its annual dinner at the Henley Golf and Country Club on Saturday March 27th. The guest of honour was Geoff Miller, chairman of the England Test selectors, who was in excellent form. 160 guests heard about his own 34 match Test career when he faced bowlers like Michael Holding and Jeff Thompson, bowling at 100 miles an hour, up to the present day when his job is to pick a squad to to go to Australia in the winter to retain the Ashes. More than £2,000 was raised to help development of cricket in Henley.

Our photo below shows L to R - Peter Crathorne Chairman of Henley TIC, Molly Sutton, High Bailiff's Lady, Geoff Miller, High Bailiff Roger Sutton, HCC President John Latham. Front row: Henley cricket supporters Barry and Errol Tulloch


The Riverland Garden



Sue Bridgewater and the first Hornbeam

A major step in the development of the Riverland Garden was taken on Saturday, 27 March when an enthusiastic team of volunteers and also members of the Henley Allotment and Gardening Club planted almost 100 trees. Yew hedges are now in place along the northern and eastern sides of the garden and a row of nine 10 feet tall hornbeams behind the yew hedge on the northern side. Three specimen trees were also planted.

An unexpected visitor on the day was Nadim Zahawi, the Conservative candidate for Stratford in the General Election, who was being conducted around the town by two local councillors. He arrived when the working party had adjourned to the Guild Hall for a well-earned lunch, so wasn’t able to help with the digging!

The Guild Hall Garden Committee is extremely grateful to all those members of the community who have attended fund-raising events in recent years to enable the Garden to reach its present position.

A campaign will shortly be launched entitled “Create a Garden – Buy a Brick”, which it is hoped will raise the necessary funds to enable the Garden to be completed later this year. The participation of the people of the town, for whose benefit the Garden is being created, will be vital to the success of the scheme.

Douglas Bridgewater

WARNING: Controversial Drama in Henley

posterHenley in Arden Drama Society opens its 2010 season with a controversial black comedy “The Humble Boy” by new playwright Charlotte Jones.

Highly acclaimed on its opening at the Royal National Theatre in August 2001, the play, which takes its inspiration from Shakespeare’s Hamlet, has all the ingredients of the classic, the troubled hero and his dominating mother, the betrayal, the lies…….

However, that’s where the similarity ends as this offering is, to use modern parlance, “for real” and is a masterpiece of play writing focusing on human emotions interacted between a recently bereaved family “The Humbles” and their would be relatives in waiting “The Pyes”

Set in the garden of a Cotswolds town the play jerks from the agonies of a young scientist following the death of his father to the most unbelievably funny summer dinner party.

A play for a thoughtful audience and demanding a very high standard from the actors, HADS did not expect to be sold out every night but for £6.00 and an invitation to bring your own wine and hamper to the tables provided in the Memorial Hall, running from Wednesday 7th April to Saturday 10th April, curtain 7:30 pm, should not be ignored.

Oh, yes just one other mention, the play contains strong language and very adult behaviour, and is not suitable for persons under sixteen years old.

The cast - Rob Ison, Rosie Hammond, Cat McDonald, Ray Evans, Tracy Humphries and Paul Thomson are ably directed by Sue Evans and further details can be found on our site and the poster on this site.

Ray Evans

Henley in Bloom Watering Cart Goes Missing

imageDuring the last month Henley in Bloom has discovered that the old green dust cart, similar to the type pictured right, has gone missing. It was stored at the side of the Baptist Church which has been its home for a number of years and is used for watering the flowers during the summer .

No doubt many HNOL readers will have seen this machine which was originally the old dust cart used by the road sweeper in the High Street. It was green in colour and had two sections holding the water. This was a useful machine that was easy for anyone to  use. This is a real loss for Henley in Bloom and if possible we would like to recover it wherever it might be.

If you have seen this lying around anywhere could you please contact the Chairman Gordon Trinder on 01564 794445. If a new machine has to be purchased it will be a large expense for the Committee as we work to a limited budget.

Parish Church of Beaudesert with Henley in Arden

From the Rectory - April 2010

Dear Friends,

What happens to your driving when you see a Police Car in the rear view mirror? Do you suddenly become very self-conscious and start to drive well below the speed limit? Do you make sure you indicate at all times? Does the presence of the Police make you feel like a law-breaker who is being called to return to the straight and narrow path of good behaviour? Something very similar happens when I’m around! Suddenly people feel the need to curb their language and their behaviour and they start ‘confessing’ – feeling guilty about not going to church recently. Well, let’s forget about these knee-jerk reactions and ask ourselves whether, deep down, we think we are guilty law-breakers, or not.

Going back to the driving analogy, an excuse some people give for speeding is that they were simply keeping up with the flow of the traffic. This excuse holds good for every aspect of life: I’m doing it because everybody is doing it. We might know that we are doing wrong but we plead ‘Why pick on me?’.

I very rarely talk about sin, guilt and repentance because I want to avoid the caricature image of the Church pointing disapprovingly at everyone. I would much rather preach on love, understanding, tolerance and forgiveness; but there comes a time when we know things are going wrong inside us, and we know we are doing wrong, and we need help to confront and deal with our ‘sins’. Facing up to wrongdoing can be quite healthy and liberating and someone recently described repentance as ‘running back into the arms of Jesus’. How good can that be!

This Good Friday and Easter we celebrated the reality of evil and the joy of its defeat – something we can experience every time we ‘confess’. There’s a prayer of Confession in every church service – how exciting is that!

John Ganjavi

The Grumpy Old Man writes

imageAt the time of writing (April 1st), there is a maximum of 5 weeks until till we, the British electorate, will have to choose who will be our new masters in Westminster. You may be aware that during the last 5 years Henley in Arden has changed constituencies. We used to be part of Leamington & Warwick, now we are part of Stratford upon Avon. So we cannot vote for James Plaskitt our current MP even if we wanted to.
So I looked into who the prospective parliamentary candidates are for the Stratford area. I must apologise I only looked for the big 3 (Labour, Conservative & Lib Dems) not all the smaller ones.  I wanted to ask some basic questions so I found the email addresses and wrote to all of them asking the same questions.
I’ve put the emails below so if you are interested you can ask questions too.
I will not put the answers down but my initial thoughts on the responses. I must reiterate the following comments are my thoughts.

  • Where do you live? : 2 of the candidates currently live in the area (1 has just moved here) and the 3rd will move if elected. Can we not get candidates who currently live in the area? Is no one local interested or capable?
  • On voting on contentious issues : 1 said he is and will be free to vote however he feels, 1 basically wrote the party manifesto, and 1 never even answered!
  • Green issues : again very little information, but similar to voting: 1 went into what he was doing in his own house and the savings (carbon) he expected, 1 copied the manifesto and the last stated he didn’t support offshore wind farms. I’m not too sure where these will be in the Stratford area.

There were other questions but I think the 3 points above sum it up.
So who do we vote for? Who knows.  Please take the time to think who you want to represent US here in Henley, and before you ask no I don’t want to be a MP.

Labour : Rob Johnston,

Conservative : Nadhim Zahawi,

Lib Dems : Martin Turner,

Grumpy Old Man


The newly formed Stratford-upon-Avon branch committee

would like to invite you to a special event on

21st April 2010 at 7pm

Meet the Prospective Parliamentary

Candidates for Stratford-upon-Avon

at SBS (Stratford Business Services)

34 Cygnet Court, Timothy's Bridge Road, Stratford, CV37 9NW

The event is FREE for members and £5 for non-members

and includes a light buffet!

To reserve your place, please contact Rhona Clarke

on 01789 720026 or

TaxPayers' Alliance Bulletin - April 2010

logoThe Town Hall Rich List
The TaxPayers’ Alliance released our annual Town Hall Rich List on April 1st – but the findings from the report were certainly no joke. In fact, it is taxpayers being taken for fools as at least 1,250 council staff are now paid £100,000 a year or more. This number is up a staggering 14 percent from the previous year. We also found that the average pay rise for these fat cats is 5 percent – and all this during a recession. Many workers in both the public and private sectors are expecting tough times ahead, made all the worse by too much borrowing and excessive spending in the public sector. But despite this, council top-brass continue to rake in the big cash.

Many councils still stubbornly refuse to respond to our Freedom of Information requests despite the fact that the general public and all political parties now support our call for transparency over executive pay in the public sector. This is our fourth Rich List and our biggest yet so the time for talk is over – taxpayers across the UK want to see where their money is going and our influential report has played a major role in making this a genuine possibility in the near future.

Find out who’s earning more than £100,000 at your local council here.

Tick Tock!
Last week we told you about big campaign that will be taking place in the run up to the election. We’ve been working really hard here at ‘Think Tank Central’ to pull our ideas together but we’re still not ready to tell you exactly what we’ll be up to. Here’s what we will say though, our latest project will see us taking a really fundamental message about the nation's fiscal situation on tour around the country. Keep your eyes on London for the launch on the 12th of April and a bulletin next week will reveal all.

EU Quangos
This week we released new research revealing the extent of EU quangos. We’ve had longstanding concerns about the arms length bodies in Britain, currently there are more than a thousand of them. Our new research found that EU quangos now have bigger budgets, and more staff than ever, and they’re spending more than £1billion.

At the Local Level in Henley-in-Arden
The Joint Parish Council has increased its salary costs by over 50% in the last two years. JPC now has a full time Clerk costing circa £24,000 per annum.


Tourist Centre Goes Into Liquidation

imageSouth Warwickshire Tourism (SWT)—the visitor promotion company also known as Shakespeare Country—dramatically ceased trading last night (Wednesday) after Stratford District Council withdrew its funding of the organisation. The first tangible effect was the shutting down yesterday of Stratford-upon-Avon Tourist Information Centre (TIC) and the stripping of its contents—a situation described as “a body blow” to the town two days ahead of the Easter holidays.

As liquidators arrived to go over the company’s books, SWT chairman Sally Carrick told the Herald she thought the district council had been “extremely short-sighted and muddled in its thinking”. She said: “I’m disappointed that the council appears not to be aware of the importance of tourism to the area for economic growth. Half of the retail businesses, if not more, depend on tourism and if that’s not being marketed, what then?”

The axe finally fell on SWT at 4pm yesterday after nearly three days of intense activity aimed at trying to save the company from the chop. But the board of SWT knew that the writing was on the wall the moment it learnt on Monday that the district council’s ruling cabinet had decided to “defer” a decision on whether to continue funding the company until councillors had seen a viable recovery plan.

As of midnight last night the council’s funding agreement with SWT expired and so did its provision of £275,000 a year to the company. Apart from the closure of the TIC in Stratford 20 people have also lost their jobs, including SWT’s chief executive Phil Hackett.

Mrs Carrick told the Herald that the district council’s contribution represented about 20 per cent of SWT’s income. Even though it was still receiving a similar sum from Warwick District Council—whose agreement still has another year to run—it would have been illegal for the company to continue trading without the Stratford cash.

This article first appeared in the Stratford Herald and is reproduced with acknowledgement.

Watch the NEW HENLEY TOUR VIDEO on the Town Website

Request from NZ about Salvation Army

imageMy mother who passed away in 1985 resided in Wootton Wawen in her early days and at one time played the big drum in the Salvation Army Band at Henley in Arden about 1920/1924.

I note that the band is still active and wonder if there is any historic information available particularly photographs or references to band members of that past era.

Best Wishes from New Zealand

Oliver Cooper

The editor will pass on all replies.

Landshare Wanted

imageWe are looking for a small plot/allotment-ish size just to grow some veg and for a good excuse to get outdoors.

We would welcome any suggestions/help in finding somewhere in Henley.

We are happy to share our produce.

Unfortunately we don't have a garden at the moment so we are struggling on what we can do in pots!

Tracey and David

The editor will pass on all replies.

A Review of Dale Le Vack’s Not Quite The Gentleman


Incarcerated in a punishment cell by the Germans, Sgt Frank W Clarke of the Norfolks is slipping into insanity…

With the last survivors of the First World War now gone the story of that great conflict has, in large, passed to those sweeping histories of the war, written by such eminent historians as John Keegan. But, alas, what most of those large histories seldom give us are the stories of the individual experiences; we need the memoirs and autobiographies for that. And there have been quite a few of those over the years, most notably Robert Graves’s Goodbye To All That, Stellar’s Seven Pillars of Wisdom, Vera Britain’s Testament of Youth and more recently Harry Patch’s The Last Fighting Tommy. With the demise of those veterans we’re also seeing an increasing number of second and third hand accounts – sometimes fictionalised – taken from the journals, diaries, and remembered stories of soldiers who served their countries between 1914 – 1918.

One of the best and most recent of these is Dale Le Vack’s Not Quite The Gentleman – A Fisherman’s War, which is as much a novel as it is a biography. It’s also a superb piece of military history that works well at all levels.

Dale Le Vack is a journalist who lives in Umberslade and has spent more than forty years in the newspaper and broadcasting industries and is currently the business editor of The Stratford-upon-Avon Herald. Not surprisingly his journalistic experience shows in the splendid writing, writing that makes this book, which stars his grandfather Frank Clarke, an absolute joy to read:

‘ "Come on Clarkey get ruddy moving," he hears himself say. He clicks his rifle to safety and leaps out of the ditch, running four paces and timing his straddle perfectly over the farm gate. He pitches his rifle over a split second before leaping and lands cleanly. Instantly he picks himself up, gathers his rifle and starts bounding towards a gap in the hedge in the next field.

‘ Just under 100 yards out he thinks he sees movement in the gap, side-steps to the left and feels the vibration of a series of bullets whishing past his shoulder. He collapses in a heap onto the ground and lies in a crumpled position quite still with his head pointing towards the hedge and his hand on his Lee Enfield. Four spiked helmets appear speculatively above the ground as the German soldiers scrutinise the spot where he has fallen. He can hear them talking. His gamble might pay off – they are inexperienced soldiers exposing themselves in such a reckless manner.

‘ Now is the real test of years of marksmanship at the butts. Now he’ll know the true value of the trophies won in the regimental tournaments at Aldershot. Now he’ll find out if he really is the brilliant sniper they say he is. He springs to the firing position and brings the barrel of the rifle on to the targets – it is very close range at 90 yards but he has to be quick and he has to be cool. In the smallest of firing arcs he manages to get off four rounds in just a few seconds. One by one the Germans drop back off their feet…’

Those three paragraphs show just how confident Dale Le Vack is with his subject matter and how, no doubt deliberately, he uses in these passages a style of writing that echoes the work of the very best adventure novelists writing in the first two decades of the 20th century, most notably Sapper (Herman Cyril McNeice, MC), John Buchan, Edgar Wallace and the brilliant, but doomed, Erskin Childers and, in places, Hemingway whose novel A Farewell To Arms set many a bench mark for later writers, not least Charles Whiting who knew Hemingway but never liked him.

And if we can use the late Charles Whiting (who also wrote as Leo Kessler) as a prime example of a wartime adventure novelist at his best, writing splendid yarns that place fictitious characters into real conflicts (invariably World War II), where the brotherhood of fighting soldiers helps spin a moral tale, then Dale Le Vack has to a large extent – and with the help of his spirited grandfather – achieved a tale that Charles (who was a distinguished military historian and ex-soldier) would have been proud of.

What Dale also does in Not Quite The Gentleman is use the experiences of his grandfather (the book also features excerpts from his grandfather’s diaries and letters) and his encounters, not least as a POW and a daring escapee, to give the reader a wider perspective of the conflict – another Whiting trick – including an encounter with the British Nurse Edith Cavell who ran an escape route for allied soldiers, a brave course of action that ended with her being executed by the Germans.

And, like Hemingway’s A Farewell To Arms, there is a love affair:

‘ ” No don’t say anything,” she whispered, her large blue eyes revealing a sense of excitement and anticipation.” Just come to me now. We have waited to long for this moment. You don’t have to say a word.”

‘ He stood by the side of the bed, bent towards her and she kissed him on the mouth. He felt the softness of her tongue and smelled the familiar fragrance of her skin. He adored her and was almost overcome by his passion and desire to possess her. She understood his desire and gradually undressed him…’

There’s also fishing, and royalty:

‘ The Princess said: ” Everybody talks about how beautiful it is by the lake and for several summers before the war we had a large skiff down there for people who wanted to get out on the water. The Prince hasn’t fished it for years but some of our gamekeepers say there are huge carp in the lake whose ancestors were once an important food supply for the house. The lake is fed by fresh springs and so the water is quite pure…

‘ They stood back from the shoreline of the lake while he [Frank Clarke] tackled up the rods keeping shadows off the surface of the bright water…’

And it would be his memories of fishing that kept Sgt Frank Clarke sane when, after being captured, he underwent horrific torture by the Germans.

Dale’s book is full of wonderful stories and characters and, as I wrote at the beginning, is an absolute delight to read and a book that will appeal not only to afficianados of military history and wartime adventure fiction but also to those who love family history and tales of human endurance and endeavour.

The book is also something of a treasure trove of photographs.

Not Quite The Gentleman – A Fisherman’s War ( ISBN 978-1-907179-28-0) is published by Original Writing in association with Conflict Books.

Steven Newman - Reviewer

Brian and Sue Westmacott have kindly agreed to stock some copies of Not Quite the Gentleman.

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Henley Author with Price on his head during WW2?

I wonder if you could help me to find the name of a book that was written by one of the local residents who lived in Henley in Arden after the end of WW2? It was written by a Count who had served with the partisans against the Germans during the war in Italy.

He, his wife and three children, spent the much of the war in hiding following a price being put on their heads at the direction of Mussolini. It is a story of their lives during this period that the Count told in a book, title and author's name both unknown, but it is known they were resident in Henley in Arden post war.

John Handford, Bournville, Birmingham.

Editor will pass on any information to John.

2009 Darwin Awards

You've been waiting for them with bated breath, so without further ado here are the 2009 Darwin awards.

8th Place
In Detroit, a 41-year-old man got stuck and drowned in two feet of water after squeezing head first through an 18-inch-wide sewer grate to retrieve his car keys.

7th Place
A 49-year-old San Francisco stockbroker, who "totally zoned when he ran", accidentally, jogged off a 100-foot high cliff on his daily run.

6th Place
While at the beach, Daniel Jones dug an 8 foot hole for protection from the wind and had been sitting in a beach chair at the bottom when it collapsed, burying him beneath 5 feet of sand. People on the beach used their hands and shovels trying to get him out but could not reach him. It took rescue workers using heavy equipment almost an hour to free him. Jones was pronounced dead at a hospital.

5th Place
Santiago Alvarado was killed as he fell through the ceiling of a bicycle shop he was robbing. Death was caused when the long torch he had placed in his mouth to keep his hands free, rammed into the base of his skull as he hit the floor.

4th Place
Sylvester Briddell Jr was killed as he won a bet with friends who said he would not put a revolver loaded with four bullets into his mouth and pull the trigger.

3rd Place
After walking around a marked police patrol car parked at the front door, a man walked into H&J Leather & Firearms intent on robbing the store. The shop was full of customers and a uniformed officer was standing at the counter.  Upon seeing the officer the would-be robber announced a hold-up and fired a few wild shots from a target pistol. The officer and a clerk promptly returned fire and several customers also drew their guns and fired. The robber was pronounced dead at the scene by Paramedics. Crime scene investigators located 47 expended cartridge cases in the shop. The subsequent autopsy revealed 23 gunshot wounds. Ballistics identified rounds from 7 different weapons. No one else was hurt.

Paul Stiller and his wife Bonnie were bored just driving around at 2 am. So they lit a stick of dynamite to toss out the window to see what would happen. Apparently they failed to notice the window was closed

Kerry Bingham had been drinking with several friends when one of them said they knew a person who had bungee-jumped from a local bridge in the middle of traffic. The conversation grew more heated and at least 10 men trooped along the walkway of the bridge at 4:30 a.m. Upon arrival at the midpoint of the bridge they discovered that no one had brought a bungee rope. Bingham, who had continued drinking, volunteered and pointed out that a coil of lineman’s cable lay nearby. They secured one end around Bingham’s leg and then tied the other (!) to the bridge. His fall lasted 40 feet before the cable tightened and tore his foot off at the ankle. He miraculously survived his fall into the icy water and was rescued by two nearby fishermen. Bingham's foot was never located.

Zookeeper Friedrich Riesfeldt (Paderborn, Germany) fed his constipated elephant 22 doses of animal laxative and more than a bushel of berries, figs and prunes before the plugged-up pachyderm finally got relief. Investigators say ill-fated Friedrich, 46, was attempting to give the ailing elephant an olive oil enema when the relieved beast unloaded.

The sheer force of the elephant's unexpected defecation knocked Mr. Riesfeldt to the ground where he struck his head on a rock as the elephant continued to evacuate 200 pounds of dung on top of him. It seems to be just one of those freak accidents that proves.... 's**t happens'

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Jaguar Man to head up new Service Centre

image Jacksons of Henley Limited have appointed Dan Jackson as Manager of their new Service Centre, the big white building on the Warwick Road.

Dan is a Chartered Mechanical Engineer and is a Member of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers. He joined the family company from Jaguar Cars where he was initially a Senior and then a Project Engineer. As a Senior Engineer he was responsible for vehicle testing in extreme temperatures. His team took Jaguar cars from the frozen wastes of Canada to the heat of the Arizona desert, testing their durability and performance. Durability was also tested by running cars continuously at speeds of up to 175 mph on the Nardo circuit in Italy.

He was then appointed Project Engineer within the Special Vehicles Group being responsible for the chassis design, suspension and handling characteristics of armoured vehicles. These included cars specially built for VIPs and Government Ministers as well as Armoured Personnel Carriers used in the Iraqi War. The one-off concept car, the Jaguar XKR+ (pictured below left), was also within his remit with special responsibility for high-speed tyre performance and handling. The James Bond Jaguars and the XK180 concept car (pictured above) were also built by the Group.


This experience brought Dan a high degree of expertise in tyres and handling and also a range of contacts within the components industry. These contacts have proved invaluable during his many years motor racing and will be a significant factor in his determination to deliver the highest possible technical standards within Jacksons Service Centre.

Dan says: “With our new centre of excellence, we can supply tyres for a wide range of vehicles (including Porsche, BMW, Mercedes, VW, Audi, Jaguar and, of course, Ford) at highly competitive prices. Plus, we will provide a free alignment check with every sale. We offer fixed price servicing and each intermediate and full service includes a free vehicle health check plus a free tyre and alignment check. I can promise you the very best of care and service and I will match the price of any comparable service offered elsewhere. I hope you will agree that this represents real value for money.”

Simon Maddox reporting

Do You Live In Warwickshire’s Best Village?

WRCCWarwickshire’s Best Village Competition provides an opportunity to win prize money as well as to share ideas with other communities facing similar challenges.

Anyone living in a village with 5,000 inhabitants or less can enter and there are hundreds of pounds to be won. There are six categories to choose from –

  • Community Buildings sponsored by Galliford Try
  • Environment
  • Communication sponsored by Yorkshire Bank
  • Community Projects
  • Community Heroes (or businesses which benefit the community) sponsored by NFU Mutual,
  • History & Heritage sponsored by CEMEX

All kinds of evidence are welcome (photos, DVDs, publications etc) and the closing date is Sunday 31 May.

The WRCC is also seeking volunteer judges who live in a village and have local knowledge to select the best at a meeting in July.

Competitions Organiser, Ariadne Uslu from the Warwickshire Rural Community Council, said “we’re looking for the village people enjoy living in because there’s so much going on. We hope the prize money will be used to fund more activities in the future.”

Lyn Kesterton, a volunteer judge, said “judging the Best Village Competition was a great experience and provided a fascinating insight into the way our villages are developing and thriving right across the county. It was really inspiring to learn about so many worthwhile and innovative projects.”

For more information about how to enter the competition or to volunteer to be a judge, visit or telephone Ariadne on 02476 217390.

Last year, Henley In Arden received two awards, one for the Heritage Centre and another for Henley NEWS Online. This year it is hoped to enter at least 3 categories so that the town can qualify to take part in the main competition.

Henley-in-Arden's Information Page

Click on the picture to view

Bookmark it or use it as your Home page.


Wootton School Supports End-Polio Campaign

imageAs part of Henley Rotary Club's contribution to Rotary's world-wide End-Polio campaign local schools were contacted by the club and made aware of the scourge of this life-threatening disease.

As a result the Wootton Wawen CE Primary School held a "non-uniform" day and raised nearly £140. "We were delighted with this effort," commented Club President David Brain. "We greatly appreciated the school's involvement in our campaign. We felt it important that schoolchildren over here where polio is now unheard of should be made aware of its crippling effects".

In Britain and Ireland, Rotary Clubs have already raised £1 million this year towards the international target of finally eliminating polio altogether from the world. There are just four countries where the disease is still endemic - India, Pakistan, Afghanistan and Nigeria - compared with over 100 when the Rotary movement launched this extraordinary drive to wipe out polio completely.


For the most Comprehensive Information
about Henley-in-Arden

Visit the Henley-in-Arden Town Website at:

This website is sponsored by the TIC and receives no money from public funds

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



photoEscorted by broadcaster & comedian Don Maclean


Friday 21st – Monday 24th May 2010

From £389.00 per person

3 nights half board accommodation and lots of inclusions

There are a few places remaining.
To find out more please contact Johnsons Coaches on 01564 797000

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Defeat for Claverdon despite being Courageous


Man of the match – Horsfall
Try scorer – Johnson
Conversion – Wyllie

Claverdon again had to travel some distance to face Tenbury for their penultimate game of this year’s league campaign. Tenbury were now sitting top of the pile after a huge victory over Chaddesley Corbett the previous week and Claverdon knew that only a win was good enough to stake a firm claim on the league title. Enforced changes due to absent personnel saw a rare start for P Carruthers in at 2nd row with Joyce moving to flanker. The only other noticeable change from the previous week saw Barton move to inside centre with Wilding restored on the wing. Busby, Austin & Pigdon gave Claverdon a great deal of experience on the bench.


A large Tenbury VP’s crowd had gathered and Claverdon had too brought a strong following for this top of the table clash. Claverdon’s preparation for this game was the best it had been all season and they looked up for the battle ahead. Captain Skinner’s words were simply to stay tight for the initial period and for everyone to give as much as they could. The lions had taken note of these wise words and started the game at a strong tempo. Forwards and backs were making yards with positive, straight running rugby. Tenbury broke in spells and forced Claverdon to concede a penalty in their own half. When the attempt at goal was pulled just short, centre Johnson ran the ball back with interest to clear the danger.

The weather was perfect for running rugby and with a wide pitch Claverdon soon showed their intentions. A solid scrum from inside the Tenbury half released Wyllie who in turn fed to winger Daws. He drew his man to leave Johnson in space who nearly scored the first points of the game but for an excellent covering tackle by the Tenbury full back. As quickly as this had happened Tenbury were soon back in the Claverdon half, such was the openness of the game. From a lineout and resultant rolling maul, Claverdon more than held their own with big tackles from Brannon, Grimsley & Wenborn. Tenbury could not be held out for long though and a few phases later they were over in the corner to take the lead. Conv missed 5-0.

This was undeserved and Claverdon knew that with a good platform from the pack the Claverdon backs had the beating of their opposite men. Twice Claverdon came close to opening the scoring with centre Johnson. Firstly he hacked on a mistake from the Tenbury backs only for the bounce of the ball to catch him out. Minutes later a similar situation and a kick through from Barton which Johnson raced on to only to be incorrectly adjudged as being offside. Claverdon now looked like the only team that was going to score with scrum half Bennett making great yards and wingers Wilding and Daws doing similar. Every time Tenbury tried to clear the danger, the immense full back Horsfall was lapping it up and putting the ball back with interest.

photoFrom one such kick Tenbury could do no more that concede a lineout deep in their own half. With a clean catch from Skinner and a miss pass from Wyllie, Johnson (photo right) gathered the ball to beat his opposite number on the outside to score a well worked and thoroughly deserved try. Wyllie kicked the tricky conversion, 5-7. The remainder of the half was played with great intensity in particular with Joyce and P  Carruthers putting in massive performances to keep Tenbury at bay and Claverdon on the attack. Tenbury did kick another penalty before the half time whistle to regain a slender 8-7 lead.

The 2nd half saw the introduction of the fresh legs of Austin to replace Carruthers who had been solid throughout the first 40 minutes. With the game still on a knife edge and everything to play for, both sides were making some basic errors such was the importance of the game. This capped with some strange refereeing decisions meant that Claverdon could not get into their stride as they would have liked and any attacks were cut short with the loud blow of a whistle much to the annoyance of the lions.

With Tenbury making good yards from their attacks and no interference from the referee they soon forced Claverdon on to the back foot. Austin saw yellow for killing the ball but the resultant penalty was pulled wide. The 14 men of Claverdon battled valiantly and again made good yards through Knight, Edsall & Skinner but without the final penetration that was required. Daws and Johnson came close to scoring in the corner but the Tenbury defence held firm.

With Austin still off the pitch and the concession of yet another kickable penalty, Tenbury took two attempts to extend their lead. The initial kick was missed but retaken 10 yards further forward due to interference from a Claverdon player, 11-7.

Back up to the full 15 Claverdon again pressed and but unfortunately the sheer domination and intensity of their play could simply not be turned in to much needed points. Tenbury in reply pushed forward and when they found an overlap Johnson was adjudged to have deliberately knocked on and it was his turn to spend 10 minutes in the bin. Tenbury kicked the 3 points to extend their lead, 14-7.

With 12 minutes left on the clock and Claverdon again down to 14 men they showed that they were still up for the fight. Wyllie broke through only to be held up short and but for a couple of knock ons at crucial moments could have been back in the game. Tenbury could only kick away possession as the pressure started to show and Claverdon were now camped inside the Tenbury 22. Busby replaced the worn out Daws and Johnson returned for one last push but it wasn’t to be and Tenbury kicked the ball out of play from a 5 metre scrum, 14-7 Full Time.

Although it seems that Claverdon have now lost the chance of the title, credit must go to all the players who played out of their skin and fought for everything. But for a few missed chances and some strange decisions this could have been a totally different outcome. Claverdon’s next opponents will be the Dutch Side Etten Leur as they travel to Holland on their annual tour for a much needed weekend’s rest for Easter.

Report by Tom Johnson
Pictures - Will Barnes

For the most Comprehensive Information
about Henley-in-Arden

Visit the Henley-in-Arden Town Website at:

This website is sponsored by the TIC and receives no money from public funds


John Garner's Business Column

John GarnerEmployers – watch out! More penalties if you miss a deadline!

If you operate a payroll you’ll know that the payroll year has just ended (April 5th) and soon you will have to send in your end of year payroll returns to HMRC.

The end of the tax year marks the start of the form-filling season. Here’s a reminder of the important deadlines:

19th April 2010 (22nd for electronic payments)
Payment of March PAYE and NIC due. Interest will run on any 2009/10 PAYE, NIC, student loan and CIS deductions not paid over by this date.

19 May 2010
Employers’ year end returns (P35 and P14s) due for submission.

31 May 2010
Employees must be provided with their P60 (certificate of pay and tax deducted).

6 July 2010
Submission of P11Ds and P9Ds for 2009/10 which show details of expenses paid and benefits provided to employees and directors. Employees must also be given a copy of their P11D/P9D by this date.

19 July 2010 (22nd for electronic payments)
Class 1A NIC for 2009/10 on most benefits provided to employees must be paid. Interest runs from this date on late payments.

19 October 2010 (22nd for electronic payments)
PAYE settlement agreement liabilities for 2009/10 are due together with Class 1B NIC. Interest runs from this date on late payments.

Electronic filing
All employers (regardless of the number of employees) must file their end of year returns electronically. This is the first year that electronic filing of online forms is compulsory for smaller employers.

Following the recent Budget employee, employer and self-employed rates of NIC will increase by 1% from April 2011 (the Chancellor having changed his mind from 3%).

The 15 million people on incomes below £20,000 will not pay any extra National Insurance Contributions, BUT employers will still have to pay the extra on the employers’ contribution; this is the additional “tax on jobs” that the Conservatives have said they will reverse if elected.

But this year BEWARE!
From May, employers who fail to pay their 2010/11 PAYE liabilities on time and in full may face penalties. HMRC may impose late payment penalties on all employers who fail to make their monthly or quarterly PAYE and NIC payments on time. They say that no penalty will be imposed for the first late payment but any subsequent breaches may attract penalties from 1% to 4% depending on the number of late payments in a year. A further penalty of 5% may be charged if any amounts are still outstanding after 6 months and then again after 12 months.

It remains to be seen how HMRC will handle this in practice.

But what if you don’t owe anything?
It is important to let HMRC know that you have nothing to pay either by:

  • completing the online form:
  • sending a signed payslip with the amount completed as “NIL”
  • phoning 0845 3667816 with your HMRC accounts office reference and advising them of the period for which no payment is due.

John Garner

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

Stratford District Council


S Thirlwell
Stephen Thirlwell

General and District elections – Thursday 6 May 2010

The General and District elections are being held on Thursday 6 May 2010 and Poll Cards notifying residents of these elections are being sent out from Stratford-on-Avon District Council this week.

The Poll cards inform residents in the District where their polling station is and when they can vote from, 7am until 10pm on 6 May.

To be able to vote at these elections residents must be on the electoral register by Tuesday 20 April 2010. Please contact Stratford District Council’s Elections Office on 01789 260208 to check you are on the electoral register at your current address.

Postal votes are available to any District resident but are especially useful for those that are unable to get to a polling station on polling day, due to health reasons or maybe on holiday or working away.

All completed applications forms for postal votes must be submitted before 5pm on Tuesday 20 April 2010.

For all elections enquiries please contact Stratford District Council’s election office on 01789 260209.

The District wards up for elections this year are: Alcester, Bidford & Salford, Brailes, Harbury, Kinwarton, Long Compton, Long Itchington, Quinton, Sambourne, Snitterfield, Southam, Stratford Alveston, Stratford Avenue and New Town, Stratford Guild and Hathaway, Studley, Tanworth, Vale of the Red Horse, Wellesbourne and will also include 2 by-elections in Henley-in-Arden and Shipston-on-Stour.

Due to the General Election being called on Thursday 6 May the Town and Parish elections for Stratford-on-Avon District will be held on Thursday 27 May 2010.

logoAlcester North Safer NEIGHBOURHOOD Team
Community Newsletter


Incident Overview
Below are the incidents recorded for the Alcester North Safer NEIGHBOURHOOD Team for March 2010:


Crime in Your Area
Anti Social Behaviour and criminal damage has reduced in the area as a whole, this has been helped by a series of targeted evening patrols in the Studley area which are ongoing following our pledge made at the last Community Forum. Anti Social Behaviour has seen a slight increase on previous months in Henley, mainly due to a group of youths travelling from Shirley on Friday evenings and weekends, all youths were dealt with appropriately by local officers before ensuring they returned to Shirley. Although violence appears high on the area in most instances this is the threat of violence rather than physical violence taking place.

Currently houses, outhouses/sheds and commercial buildings are being targeted throughout the area with Tanworth, Earlswood and Studley areas suffering the most. Vehicle theft is also currently a problem in the Studley area, for tips and advice please see the ‘Information & Advice’ section below.

Officers request that if you see anybody or any vehicle acting suspiciously that you contact Warwickshire Police on 01926 415000 or you may contact your local officers on their mobile phones if you have their number and they are on duty, if they are not on duty please use the aforementioned number. If you can we would appreciate a description of the person and/or vehicle including registration number, however don’t worry if this is not possible and it is not safe to do so as your personal safety comes first. Details will be taken and a unit will conduct an area search and make any relevant checks, however should you see a break in progress or feel threatened in any way please dial 999.

Information & Advice
Warwickshire Police targets known burglars. Many burglaries happen because criminals see easy opportunities to enter homes. Here’s what you can do to prevent this from happening:

  • Don’t hide spare keys, leave them with someone you trust. Burglars know where to look
  • Fit good locks to doors and windows and use them
  • Change locks when you move into a new home
  • Use lights and radios on timers to make your home appear occupied
  • Keep windows and doors secure when you are elsewhere in your home or garden
  • Fit a good quality alarm from a reputable supplier
  • Fit door chains and use them
  • Join your local NEIGHBOURHOOD WATCH
  • Use SMART Water to protect items that belong to you

Together we have significantly reduced vehicle crime in Warwickshire. This is no consolation if your phone, wallet, handbag or satellite navigation equipment is taken and your vehicle damaged in the process. Here’s what you can do:

  • Never leave anything on view in your vehicle
  • Take audio and sat nav equipment with you
  • Remove the sat nav cradle and wipe away any windscreen marks
  • Never leave the car with the engine running, or Keys in the ignition
  • Fit self-locking screws to prevent number plates being stolen
  • Always lock your car and fully close windows and sunroofs
  • Fit anti-theft devices to steering wheels, fuel caps and wheels
  • Park in safe, well-lit areas or secure car parks

For further information please visit or contact the Alcester North Safer NEIGHBOURHOOD Team on 01789 762207 or E-Mail:

Please note it is an offence to let off fireworks after 11pm except on Bonfire Night when the deadline is midnight and New Year’s Eve at 1am.

Alcester North Safer NEIGHBOURHOOD Priorities

Current priorities as chosen by members of the public at the last Community Forum held on the 11th February 2010:

  • Anti Social Behaviour, Millenium Park and Surrounding area, Studley – Safer NEIGHBOURHOOD Officers have pledged to conduct high visibility patrols in the area including 8 x extra duties until 2am.
  • Parking issues outside Tesco Express, Studley – Safer NEIGHBOURHOOD Officers will liased with Stratford District Council regarding enforcement and have pledged to conduct 20 x high visibility patrols in the area to deliver advice or enforcement where appropriate.
  • Inappropriate use of Juggins Lane by HGV’s and Speeding Vehicles, Forshaw Heath, Earlswood – Safer NEIGHBOURHOOD Officers will liase with the Council and Highways regarding a review of signage and the speed limit. Officers have pledged to carry out 20 x high visibility patrols in the area to monitor HGV’s confusing Forshaw Heath Lane with the M42 slip road and to carry out speed checks.

Feedback on the above priorities will be given at the next Community Forum (see below for details), feedback will also be given in the next newsletter together with details of the new priorities. For further information please visit or 

Good News/Events
Officers in Henley located the driver of a non-stop road traffic collision, which occurred in Preston Bagot. The driver was arrested for various offences. The case is ongoing.

Officers from the Alcester North Safer NEIGHBOURHOOD Team in liaison with West Midlands Police have arrested a male believed to be responsible for burglary offences in Warwickshire and the West Midlands area. Enquiries are ongoing.

Officers from the Alcester North Safer NEIGHBOURHOOD Team have conducted drugs searches in local pubs, a quantity of Cannabis was seized and in one case Methadrone was also seized. All parties concerned where dealt with appropriately, including details taken and Official Street Warnings issued. Further searches are planned.

Officers in Henley have attended local schools to deliver talks in conjunction with the NHS regarding drug abuse and it’s effects.

The next Community Forum will be held 1st July 2010, 7pm, Henley Memorial Hall - If you have a specific concern then come along to the local surgery, where you will be able to speak to your local Safer NEIGHBOURHOOD Policing Team, Warwickshire County Council or Stratford District Council Officer.

The next Henley Community Surgery will be held, 26th May 11:30am, Henley Baptist Church Hall - The surgery gives you the opportunity to speak to members of the Parish Council & Safer NEIGHBOURHOOD Policing Team about the issues that concern you, while giving you feedback regarding what is happening in the community.

The next Henley Police Surgery will be 28th April, between 11am – 1pm, Henley Police Station - A drop in facility to discuss issues/problems within the community with your local policing team.

The next Henley Neighbouhood Watch Meeting will be held 6th May, 7pm, Henley Police Station

The next Tanworth/Earlswood Police Surgery will be 5th May, between 10am – 12am, St Mary Magdalene Church Room, Tanworth - A drop in facility to discuss issues/problems within the community with your local policing team.

The next Studley NEIGHBOURHOOD WATCH/Community Surgery will be held 19th May, 7:30 pm, Studley Village Hall

If you have any information or have witnessed the above incidents,
please can you contact Alcester Police on 01789 762207. 


The Henley-in-Arden Notice Board

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Henley Diary Dates

Articles and news stories for Henley NEWS Online should be sent to the at any time. Future diary dates should be notified to Diane Bayley at 6 Nightingale Close, Great Alne, B49 6PE. Email:

FASHION SHOW – Friday April 9th in the Church Hall, Beaudesert Lane at 7.30pm in aid of church funds. Ladies come along and enjoy this fashion show featuring ex chainstore clothes (sizes 8 – 22) from leading High Street stores with the opportunity to buy from a large selection afterwards at greatly reduced prices. Only £5.00 to include a glass of wine.
Tickets from Barbara Colclough 793710 or Daphne Jones 01926 843515

Our next meeting is on Tuesday 13th April 7.30 pm in The Memorial Hall when our speaker Sheila Holland, National Demonstrator, on “BIG, BOLD & BEAUTIFUL”. Competition “April in Paris”. Visitors welcome (£5).

A parish meeting is a public body exercising public functions and as such any decision, action or failure to act in relation to the exercise of its public function is capable of being judicially reviewed. Beaudesert and Henley-in-Arden hold parallel Annual Parish Meetings and this year the meetings will be held on Monday 19th April 2010 in the Baptist Church Hall at 7.15pm.

Stephanie Gaskin is the speaker on Tuesday 20th April in the Baptist Church Hall. Come and join us for her presentation “North Wales” from 7.45pm and meet other wildlife enthusiasts for a small fee of £2.00.

Our next meeting is on Thursday 22nd April in the Baptist Church Hall at 8.00pm when Chris Mew will give a talk on “English Bells and Change Ringing” . Visitors and new members are very welcome. Further details from Pat Kench on 795419.

FIRST HENLEY & WOOTTON SCOUTS are looking for enthusiastic and energetic Leaders or Assistant Leaders. Details from Simon Cossey 07979 240174

THE STAFFORDSHIRE HOARD. There will be a coffee morning in the Guild Hall on Saturday 1st May, 10.30am. This is to raise funds to help ensure that the hoard remains in the Midlands. Cake stall and raffle.

PETTICOAT LANE – Monday 3rd May in and around the Church Hall, Beaudesert Lane. Home made cakes, bric–a-brac, plants, raffle, paperbacks etc. Refreshments available. Small items of furniture and other items to sell would be gratefully received between 4pm & 8pm at the Church Hall on Sunday 2nd May or ring 01564 794308.

BARN DANCE - Saturday 22nd May at 7.30pm for 8.00pm start, St John’s Church Hall, Beaudesert Lane, in aid of church funds.
Come along and have an enjoyable evening with friends and dance to legendary caller Hugh Rippon. Tickets £7.50 to include Ploughman’s Supper from Barbara Colclough on 01564 793710 or Daphne Jones on 01926 843515.

Details of all the local cinemas, theatres and exhibitions can be found on The Henley Town Website

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 2.15pm. 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 at the Golf Club on Monday evenings at 7pm.
New members are always welcome.
Please email Robin Freeman <>
Download Henley Rotary Club calendar
Are you interested in gardening and flowers or just spending a pleasant evening watching a demonstrator arrange foliage and flowers?  We meet on the second Tuesday each month at 7.30pm in The Memorial Hall, Station Road, Henley-in-Arden so why not come along and see for yourself? Visitors are always welcome £3.00. You do not have to be an active flower arranger to enjoy watching our demonstrators but if you do feel you would like to 'have a go' we hold occasional workshops. For further information contact Secretary - Annette Walker - 01564 792837

The Objectives of the Club are:

  • To maintain and develop facilities for gardening and allotment sites.
  • To enable members to enjoy the activity of gardening and allotments.
  • To enable a healthy and rewarding past time enriching people's lives.
  • To preserve local green spaces for the community of Henley-in-Arden.
  • To foster an allotment and gardening spirit.
  • To create synergies and alliances with other like minded organisations.
  • To create a network where members can communicate with each other in order to exchange ideas, exchange produce and flowers, share equipment, seek advice and help.

The HAAGC is open to everyone with an interest in gardening and membership is FREE. Click Here for Application Form

Meets every Friday and Sunday evening from 8pm at the Memorial Hall, Station Road, Henley-in-Arden. The season runs from mid September to end April. A warm welcome is extended to all badminton players who may be interested in joining the club. Visitors welcome. Please contact the Chairman, Alan Barber, on 01564 793320 for further details.

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 A3400 just outside Henley. The Club welcomes new members, whether beginners or established players. For further information contact John Townson 01564 792407.
Jollytots meet every Tuesday morning during term time between 10am and 11.45am in the Church Hall on Beaudesert Lane, Henley.  It is open for all under 4 year olds and costs only £1.50 which includes a drink and a biscuit. There are toys, games, arts and crafts and singing. Any questions please ring Rachel on 01564 794470.
There are still vacancies in some areas of Henley-in-Arden for NEIGHBOURHOOD WATCH Coordinators. If you are aware that your area is not covered or you are willing to be a coordinator, please contact Annette Walker on 792837
Meetings are held on the Second Tuesday each month at 7.30 pm at the Memorial Hall. Secretary Mrs Annette Walker 01564 792837.  Meeting programme
Holds its monthly lunchtime meeting on the 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 an informative speaker on a business topic. Full details at
TAI CHI in HENLEY Thursdays, 11am at the Baptist Church Hall, High Street. Age, health or fitness no barrier. £5 per session – no termly fees. For further information contact Debbie Wild on 07773 318830.    Full details at:
Meets the last Sunday of the month at Wootton Wawen village hall at 2.15pm for a conducted walk of about 5 miles over the local and surrounding area footpaths. The Group welcomes all walkers. There is no subscription.  More details from Denis Keyte on 01564 792872.
Meetings are held on the first Wednesday of each month. Membership consists of retired professional and business men residing in the vicinity of Henley. Visitors are most welcome and for further details please contact the secretary Andrew Yarwood on 794079.
De Montfort Lodge is the only freemasons’ lodge meeting in Henley. It was established in the town in 1930 and holds meetings in the Guild Hall. Anyone interested in freemasonry should contact John Pollard on 0121 603 8577 for further details.
The WRVS organise a lunch club for the elderly of the district at Dell Court every Tuesday at 12.30pm at a cost of £3.10.  For further details contact Christine on 01789 209210.
Plays Duplicate Bridge of intermediate standard on Tuesday evenings at the the White Swan Hotel and usually finds 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.
Each month the Henley Focus contains plenty for everyone with local business advertisements, reviews and community information. The Henley Focus could be helping you to promote your business or service to local people at affordable prices and also offers a range of design services at very reasonable rates. The publication is very happy to promote community and charity events free of charge.
Please call Karen on 01564 774748 or email for more information.

Details about tourist attractions and neighbouring villages can be found on The Henley Town Website

From our own Correspondents

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 sent 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

We are delighted to publish the growing list of our correspondents:

Court Leet
Religious Affairs
Rotary Club
The Henley Society
Henley History
Henley in Bloom
Wild Life Society
Warwickshire College
Henley Methodist ChurchJames Steele
Henley Diary
Flower Club Annette Walker
Editorial Team
Proof ReaderJohn Garner
Senior CorrespondentIrene Robinson
Warwickshire County
Stratford District Council
Heart Start
Trading Standards
Heritage Centre
Memorial Hall
Henley High School
Primary School Elaine Field
Make Henley Greener
Drama - HADS
Claverdon & RailwayClive Hanley
Chief Photographer
Court Leet & HADSAlan Robson

WRCCThe Warwickshire Rural Community Council (WRCC) helps and encourages people living in rural areas to develop their communities. By aiding locally led and run projects it also hopes to strengthen social ties within Warwickshire's villages and small towns.

Henley NEWS Online was the outright winner of the Village Ventures competition 2007.


Previous Editions

Bill Leech - Editor

Henley NEWS Online has an editorial review team which now has more than ten members. They review each edition before it is published and when there are controversial articles, they play a big part in deciding the content. If you would like to join this team please contact the editor. We would like to recruit more women to the team as they are under represented at present as are young people.
Air Ambulance

Henley NEWS Online is published as a Community 'Not For Profit' On-line Newsletter

The views expressed in these stories and articles do not necessary match the views of the editor. 

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