Weekly Newsletter

Penny Post
Penny Post Weekly Newsletter Nov 23-30 2017
Local News  

this week includes rugby clubs, restrictive covenants, strategic plans, parking (free and otherwise) and CATs.

Local Events – see below
Local Activities

• The Penny Post Guide to Local Courses includes a wide variety of art, craft, cookery, music, drama, dance, language, IT, fitness, sport, adventure, dog training and wellbeing workshops and courses.

• calling local artists – the new Cornforth Studios in Newbury (which offers shared studio space from £55/mnth) is inviting free submissions to a salon style Art Exhibition 8-20 December. Submit photos of up to five works per artist to Lenny 07957 908547 cornforthstudios@gmail.com. Deadline is 4 Dec.


• Jeff Wicks, Newbury recommends Smart Blinds in Thatcham “From the initial phone call, to the quote (very competitive) and especially the installation, everyone I dealt with within the company was completely professional. The install was so efficient and the family values that the company has really were apparent. I highly recommend for commercial and domestic blinds.”

• We recommend Happy Drains. Last Sunday, both our kitchen and shower drains became blocked. The man turned up on time, fixed both problems, charged what was quoted and left no mess. He also said that, contrary to what we’d read elsewhere, coffee grounds do not help keep kitchen drains unblocked: quite the opposite (I saw the rather disgusting evidence of this). He recommends putting them on the compost instead.

Special Offers

• Penny Post subscribers will receive a 10% discount off any Oaktrack products except bronze turkeys at Christmas Food & Drink Fair at Oaktrack Smallholding in Charlton Down near Andover, Sat 25 and Sun 26 Nov: quote ‘Penny Post’ to claim your discount.


• Miele rotary/roller iron B890 hardly used and in immaculate condition. Offers over £300 (nearly £1,000 new). Please contact dpuxley@welfordpark.co.uk
• Smallish desk available for a small donation to Penny Post. Please reply to this.

Property Available to Rent

Yattendon: A unique opportunity to rent this superb four-bedroom, four-reception room house in the centre of the village. Click here for more information.
Hungerford: A well presented two-bedroom house with garage in the popular Charnham Park development. £900pcm. Contact Nina Clark Lettings.
Hungerford: Three-bed, newly decorated, detached house with garage in a sought after close in Hungerford. Available mid November £1,150pcm. Contact Nye & Co
Ramsbury: A lovely two-bedroom character cottage situated in the heart of the village. £895pcm. Contact Nina Clark Lettings.
Kintbury: Five-bed, three-bathroom house, renovated throughout providing a stunning living space. Available now. £2,750pcm. Contact Nye & Co
Kintbury: Three-bed semi-detached house with parking and garden close to village centre and railway line. Available now £1,100pcm. Contact Nye & Co

Local Jobs

See the Penny Post website for local jobs including:
Front of House Supervisor, Corn Exchange Newbury • Swimming Instructor, Hungerford • Full-time Gardener, near Lambourn • Cleaner, Hungerford • Part-time Management Accountant, near Lambourn • Duty Manager for Leisure Centre , Hungerford • Care Assistant, Froxfield • KS2 Teacher, Chilton Foliat • Second Chef, Froxfield • Online Communications Assistant, near Lambourn • Technical Support Co-ordinator, Hungerford • Christmas Card Shop Manager, Hungerford • Carer for disabled teenager, Hungerford  • Homecare Staff, throughout the area • A range of catering and hospitality career opportunities, Chilton Foliat • Volunteer AONB Ambassadors, throughout the area • Volunteer Co-responders, throughout the area.

• Hungerford Town Council has two vacancies for Town Councillors. Please contactclaire.barnes@hungerford-tc.gov.uk.

Local Businesses 

Animals & AgricultureAutomotive • Business Consultants • Family Life •  Food & Drink •  Health, Beauty & Wellbeing • House & Garden • Legal & Finance • IT, Media & Web • Visual & Performing Arts • Retailers • Travel & Tourism • Tuition & Training

Please support the businesses which support Penny Post!

• Welcome to AM Electrics which offers a wide range of electrical services for domestic, industrial and commercial clients including security, audio/visual equipment, architectural, certification and PAT testing.• Congratulations to James Yeoell of Butler Toll Independent Financial Advice & Asset Management for achieving the Chartered Insurance Institute’s Best Paper award.

• Also from Butler Toll, an immediate reaction to this week’s budget; and a brief introduction to The Residence Nil Rate Band which will have an effect on inheritance-tax planning.


People who look after family members with physical, mental disabilities or addictions often don’t see themselves as carers. As a result they miss out on vital support with consequences for their own health and finances. If you or anyone you know are in this situation please do ask for help. Carers Rights Dayis Fri 24 Nov and here are some useful links:
West Berkshire (also drop-in event about carer finances 10am-2pm Fri 24 Nov at Burwood Community Centre in Thatcham), Swindon CarersCarers in WiltshireMarlborough News Online: Does Your Employer Care?Working for Carers who estimate that one in eight employees are caring for someone outside work
Be Free YC supports young 8-25 year-old carers in South Oxfordshire (it reckons every classroom in the country has an average of two children who care for a family member)

Four-legged Friends

• Do you know a pooch who needs to lose a few pounds? A friend of ours is a fully qualified animal nutritionist who is looking for case studies of dogs that need to lose a few kilos. She is offering a free  one-to-one service in your own home, with full on-line support and advice as required. Please contact Julie on 01235 759237 / 07914 015719

• Wanted: female yellow Labrador puppy. Please contact Sheila at bindi.brighteyes@gmail.com or 01635 202150.

• We lost one of our chickens this week as a result of a dog coming into our garden and attacking it. If you own a dog and take it for walks in a village please keep it on a lead to avoid this kind of unpleasantness.

• If you own a dog and fancy a drink (and the dog fancies a drink) and you’re passing through Theale then you might be interested to learn that the Fox & Hounds has recently been voted Britain’s most dog-friendly pub.

• Message from Gill at Hedgehog Bottom charity in Thatcham: As we are coming up to Christmas we have started to notice people doing fundraisers with bags of ‘Reindeer Food‘ for children to sprinkle around the garden. If you see this stuff on sale please inspect it carefully. If it contains glitter, unless they can PROVE it’s edible glitter, please do not buy it. The craft stuff is lethal to birds and small mammals that end up with a stomach full of plastic.

Charity Plugs

• The ATE Ghana charity based in Ramsbury has been selected by The Big Give Christmas Challengefor match funding – which means that every penny you donate to them between next Tues 28 Nov to Tues 5 Dec will be doubled! £1 provides school meals for a week for a child (in an area where some children receive as little as 4 meals a week at home as their families cannot grow enough food to eat).

• The last Hungerford Cancer Support meeting for 2017 will be in The Riverside Suite at the Bear Hotel 2-4pm Tues 28 Nov with festive nibbles. If you haven’t been before please do come along, everyone is welcome. The meetings re-start on Tues 28 Jan. Thanks to The Bear Hotel for generous offer of the room. Any further information please contact Jenny 01488 644671 or Yvonne 07888 399 134 ygillies@btinternet.com

• I have recently discovered the Community Spirit Charity Shop on Thatcham High St (near Army & Navy Surplus) which supports a different local charity each month – this month Newbury SOBS (Survivors of Bereavement by Suicide) They also collect milk bottle tops and used stamps which are used by local charities to raise funds.

Volunteer Centre West Berks now has a useful Big List of all the local volunteer opportunities. To applyfill out this form using the reference number from the list.

• 4 Legs Community Radio based in the Lambourn Valley needs your crowd-funding help to get this great resource off the ground

• See this week’s Local News for a list of just some of the people who’ve raised money for good causes recently (if you know of any person or organisation that deserves a mention in this way, let us know).


• Our Penny Post Christmas Special offers something for everyone – from Crushco’s record players & audio equipment, Andresa’s pamper treatments & gifts and hand-painting your own ceramic keepsakes at The Funky Teapot in Wantage to homemade Christmas goodies from Baking Around, local gammon from Welford Park, festive discounts on tipples from The Naked Grape, fabulous Christmas menus throughout December at The Queens Arms in East Garston, Blandy’s at Inglewood and The Swan in Great Shefford

• Newbury’s Honesty Bakery is taking orders for their fab Honesty Bakery Christmas selection of stollen, pannetone, mince pies, cake, pudding & biscuits – order & collect from their coffee shops in Kingsclere, Inkpen, Lambourn & Hungerford (Barr’s Yard on the A4)

• For local Christmas cards, trees, wreaths & decorations please scroll down to the end of this newsletter

Christmas Community Spirit
• Wiltshire’s HVDV (Helping Victims of Domestic Violence) and Berkshire Women’s Aid are appealing for gift shoeboxes for families in refuge…read more
• Would you like to join the Hungerford Christmas Lunch as a helper or a guest?…read more

Seasonal Snippets

• It’s time to start digging out some favourite Christmas recipes. This Mini Christmas Pudding Truffles recipe is one of mine. Do send in yours by replying to this email.

• If you, or someone you care for, lives with a mental health condition and you would like to be involved in the process that helps shape mental health services in West Berks, then please register for the Thinking Together event 10.30am-1.30pm Thurs 30 Nov in Hungerford Town Hall. Hosted by Healthwatch West Berkshire which is our independent champion and patient voice for health and social care. Registration Deadline: 26 Nov.

• I’m still struggling with the clock change and the dark evenings – I don’t know why but it seems like I’m not alone. Makes me look forward to seeing Christmas lights up everywhere!

• The Public Protection Partnership has launched a new grant scheme to help local communities in West Berkshire address community safety and to help prevent crime using the proceeds of crime.

• See this week’s Local News for our weekly foraging trip through the region’s stories, newspapers and websites, including some thoughts about CAT-funding, some acronyms explained, the launch of the Public Protection Partnership and council vacancies in Bedwyn and Hungerford.

• The season of Christmas Cards is nearly upon and with it some of those round-robin letters. My husband Brian claims to have received one this week from a woman signing herself only as ‘xxxx’. Do you know her? We don’t, thanks goodness. You can read it by clicking here.

• Joke of the week: “My family all laughed when I said I wanted to be a comedian. Well they’re not laughing now…” Bob Monkhouse

See below for a selection of upcoming local events.

Local Events

There’s a wide range of events and activities on the PP website calendar this week including bingo in Lambourn, storytime at Newbury Library, Piglets Antiques & Collectibles in Hungerford.

Click here for all the Christmas events on our calendar 

Sat 25 Nov

• Christmas Food & Drink Fair 10am-3pm Sat 25 & Sun 26 Nov, Oaktrack Smallholding in Charlton Down . (Penny Post subscribers will receive a 10% discount off any Oaktrack products except bronze turkeys bought on either day – quote ‘Penny Post’ to claim your discount).
• Wantage Repair Cafe 9.30am-12.30pm The Mix, Wantage (plus Wantage Farmers Market in the marketplace)
• Free Dyslexia Advice 10am – 12pm Hungerford Library with Jacqui Flisher
• Late Night Shopping for Book Lovers 6 – 8pm Hungerford Bookshop. Enjoy a glass of wine, 10% discount and a literary candle demo!
• Confusions by Kintbury Players at Coronation Hall. Four delightful short plays by Alan Ayckbourn. Tickets £10 include light supper.
…plus more on the PP website calendar: including Affordable Art Exhibition, RDA & St Lawrence Christmas Fairs in Hungerford, Lambourn Christmas Market, Trash & Treasure sale & Cantemus ‘This Shining Light’ Coral Concert in Shalbourne.
…plus more on the PP website calendar.

…and on Sunday: Newbury Lights Switch On & Santa Parade, Art by the Lake at the Discovery Centre, Thatcham, Edward Thomas Remembered in Eastbury.
…plus more on the PP website calendar.

Thurs 30 Nov

Christmas Gift & Craft Fayre 10am – 4pm Richmond Retirement Village, Letcombe Regis. Free entry, beautiful gifts. This year’s theme: upcycled baubles!
…plus more on the PP website calendar.

Fri 1 Dec

…on the PP website calendar: Wantage Dickensian Evening, Thatcham Lights Switch On, St Michaels Lambourn Christmas Fair
…plus more on the PP website calendar.

Sat 2 Dec

• Savernake Ensemble Winter Concert 6.30 – 7.30pm St Michael’s Church, Axford In aid of GWH Brighter Futures Radiotherapy Appeal
• Cloudbusting: The Music of Kate Bush 8pm Sat 2 Dec Croft Hall. Tickets £15. Incredible tribute band!
Ladbrokes Winter Carnival Party at The Queens Arms, East Garston. Top DJ & dancing all night. Restaurant (booking required) & bar food.
…plus more on the PP website calendar: including Yuletide Barfield HandBell Ringers in Thatcham,Painted Wreath Workshop in Hungerford

Sun 3 Dec

Hungerford Christmas Lights Switch On  outside the Town Hall. Music from 4pm. Lights switch on by author Robert Harris at 5pm.
…plus more on the PP website calendar.

Mon 4 Dec

• Pelican Cancer Christmas Fair  9.30am-5pm Mon 4 Dec The Vineyard, Newbury. £5 entry. Horris Hill School Choir singing carols.
…plus more on the PP website calendar.

Coming soon…

• Indoor Antiques and Flea Market, Hungerford Town Hall Wed 6 Dec.
• Cello Concert, East Garston Village Hall, Sat 9 Dec
…plus more on the PP website calendar.

More About Christmas!
Wreaths & Decorations
• Christmas Floristry Workshops & Events in Hungerford, Inkpen, Kintbury, Great Shefford and Pewsey with Kelly Louise Floral Designer
• Make natural decorations  Sat 9 Dec at the Nature Discovery Centre in ThatchamChristmas Trees
Real Christmas Trees for Charity available in Swindon – all proceeds to Action Through Enterprise Ghana and Brighter Futures Radiotherapy Appeal
BBOWT Wild Christmas Tree Sale Sun 10 Dec Nature Discovery Centre, Thatcham

Christmas Cards
• Hungerford Cards for Good Causes pop-up shop until Sat 9 Dec United Reform Church (near Barclays).
• The popular ‘Christmas in Marlborough’ card is once again being sold at St Peter’s Church to raise funds for Wiltshire Air Ambulance (from Marlborough News Online).

• Please email penny@pennypost.org.uk if you’re involved in organising a Christmas events in the area which you would like to see promoted in Penny Post.

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