Penny Post July 13 – 20

Penny Post

Local News

This week’s Local News includes development issues, grants, community transport, neighbourhood plans, skills training and crop circles.

Local Events – see below
Local Activities

Local Courses, Classes & Tutors Guide – July – something for everyone this month from boot camps and bushcraft to Nordic walking and pottery.

Guide to Kids’ Activities this Summer Holiday – (added since email sent out earlier this week: summer stage school & mini professors in Wantage; Bake with Me Macaron classes in Newbury, DriveStart for 15-19 yrs, days out)


• Shirley from Newbury recommends Kelly Louise Floral Designs“No matter what my requirements are, Kelly Louise always manages to exceed my expectations.”

• DR from Reading recommends Woods Property Solutions“An absolutely excellent and professional job – will recommend you to others.”

Special Offer

Spa Day Special Offer at  Natura Spa at Audley Inglewood: Spa Day for two people includes cream tea, swim, sauna and a 30-minute treatment such as a mini facial, back, neck and shoulder massage, Indian head massage and a body wrap. £80 total Book now on 01488 682 298 or [email protected] or via facebook/Natura Spa Kintbury


• Winchcombe Place Care Home is very grateful for the donations of pre-decimal coins or notes our readers have kindly sent them.

• Unwanted gardening tools are requested by Eight Bells Mental Health charity in Newbury – their members find gardening very therapeutic and would be grateful for donations of any unneeded tools (and a shed!)

• Items not to buy – last night a friend of ours had all his Makita 18v power tools stolen in East Garston. If anyone is offered any of the following please tell the police: three impact drivers; two drills; a skill saw; five batteries; a battery charger; and a Makita digital radio.

• Two single beds available. Offers accepted.


• To rent: lovely three-bedroom cottage in the centre of East Garston.

• To rent: shared studio space for two artists/craftspeople between Kingsclere and Basingstoke.

• For sale: Hopgrass Open Barn £595,000 with Nye & Co.

• Lovely self-contained Kintbury annex for rent for weekend getaways or mid-week if you work locally and need accommodation.

• Rental property wanted: unfurnished 2/3 bedroom property between Thatcham and Hungerford up to £800pcm to start mid-end August. Please contact Carol on [email protected] (Carol is a teacher in Newbury and is an excellent tenant).

• Grazing land available between Hungerford and Kintbury.

Local Jobs

See the Penny Post website for local jobs including: Relief Support Workers and Full- and Part-time Support Workers, near Marlborough • Shop Manager, Hungerford, Newbury, Marlborough and Devizes • Higher Level Teaching Assistant, Hungerford • Commis ChefFront of House StaffHousekeeperChef de Partie and Night Porter, all at The Three Swans in Hungerford • Part-time Administrator (closes 17 July), Corn Exchange, Newbury • Part-time Learning Support Assistant, Alder Bridge Steiner Waldorf School  • Care Assistants, Brendoncare Froxfield • Student Reintegration Manager (closes 17 July) and Pastoral Support Assistant (closes 17 July), both in Hungerford • Technical Support Coordinator Hungerford • Chef de PartieSous ChefBar Team LeaderAssistant Restaurant ManagerBar SupervisorLeisure Team MemberRestaurant SupervisorFood and Beverage Team Member and Kitchen Porter, all with Bourne Leisure • Receptionist and Mechanics, Technicians and HGV Drivers ND Services, Lambourn Woodlands • Charity Shop Volunteers, Hungerford • Homecare Assistants, throughout West Berkshire • Nursing and Domiciliary Care Staff, Letcombe Regis.

• Do you work full or part time and would like to help young people reach their potential? Adviza is looking for volunteer mentors for Year 8, 9 and10 students at John O’Gaunt School in Hungerford. Full training provided. Application deadline: 28 July.

• Tom, a friendly, reliable Exeter Uni student, 20, with car, available for babysitting through July. Lives near Great Shefford. 07972 351 716.

• Bluebird Care has recently reached an impressive milestone by recruiting over 100 care-home workers in the past 12 months – but more are still needed.

Local Businesses  

Animals & Agriculture • Automotive • Family Life •  Food & Drink •  Health, Beauty & Wellbeing • House & Garden • Legal & Professional • IT, Media & Web • Visual & Performing Arts • Retailers • Travel & Tourism • Tuition & Training

Please support the businesses which support Penny Post!

• Is your business worried about the threat of cyber-attack and data breach? Register for this free Cyber-Security workshop for local businesses 9am-12.30pm Mon 24 July at West Berks Council offices in Newbury.
• Congratulations to Bluebird Care for winning the bfa-HSBC Franchisor of the Year award.


• Still time to enter our July Quiz for the chance to win a pair of hand-painted shoes or trainers from Pixie Ink Designs (wide range of designs can be requested including rainbows, fairies and skulls)

• If you’d prefer to deal with your trivia on licensed premises (and with some excellent food), there’s a Quiz Night at 7.30pm on Tues 18 July at The Wheatsheaf in Chilton Foliat.

Four-legged Friends

• Thanks to Newbury Cats Protection and all our Facebook friends for their support since our tabby Nimbus disappeared last Thursday. We thought the rain might bring him home but sadly not. I know some cats return after months of living feral so there is still hope but he’s never strayed like this before. NCP recommended putting some used litter in the garden as cats can smell it for miles and it might remind him of home. We will also micro chip all our cats from now on so they can identified if they are found. We have never managed to get them to wear collars…

• Loving home wanted for Darcy, the shy but friendly rescue cat – can you help?

• Do you have live near a stream and have room for a mink trap? Minks kill a lot of wildlife including our endangered voles. If so, please contact Gavin Bennett on [email protected]

Charity Plugs

• Are you an unpaid carer for somebody (a child, partner or family member)? You are invited to join an informal group of carers that meet up once a week at Winchcombe Place, Maple Crescent, Newbury, RG14 1LR 10am – 12noon every Thursday.  Time for a chat, cup of tea, a moan and groan, sharing advice, support and chilling out for a couple of hours. For more details please contact Patrina on [email protected]

• Macular Society Support Group meets Tues 19 July in Newbury – anyone concerned about sight loss welcome to attend

• Mary Hare school needs to raise £6m by 2020 to build a new primary school. Click here for details of their fundraising.

• Hungerford Town Band is looking to upgrade its musical instruments, some of which are nearing the end of their musical life. (You’ll be able to hear them play at the East Garston Fete this Sat 15 July).

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

Green Fingers

• Our July gardening tips include how you can win the battle for the brassicas (and it’s not by netting) how to look after tomatoes, broad beans and basil; plus an easy way to harvest blackcurrants.

• Does anyone want any strawberry plants? I’ve dug up a whole patch so you’re welcome to collect from us in East Garston. Please reply to this.

• Hungerford’s Marsh Lane Allotments are open  -4pm this Saturday, 15 July if you would like to find out what they grow and why they love it

• Penny Post Head Gardener blogger Bob Davison is judging the produce show at East Garston Fete on Sat 15 July. Click here for schedule of classes and entry form.

• Robert from Pestco reports that after the mild spring, wasps have arrived early. If you have them around your house you might have a nest under a roof tile or in a hedge. If you disturb a nest you will be surprised how many come out. Remember to poke a hedge before strimming it and take real care if you are on a ladder. If you need help call Robert on 07796 615 818.

Seasonal Snippets
• If you missed BBC Radio 4’s Any Questions broadcast from Hungerford Town Hall (as part of HADCAF festival fortnight) here is the link to listen

• One of the above panellists was Jack Monroe aka A Girl Called Jack who publishes low budget recipes and I happened to try her Creamed Herring Roe (like taramasalata) this week. I used thick Greek yoghurt instead of cream cheese and fresh (frozen) roe which needed pan frying first (and then you pull off the ‘skin’) but you can use tinned roe as well.

• After four months of being closed, good news that The Swan in Great Shefford re-opens at 5pm tomorrow night, Friday 14 July.

• There are plenty of local walks, cycle and horse riding routes to enjoy this summer. This great interactive North Wessex Downs map helps you find them

•  Do you dread packing to go on holiday? Here are some smart packing tips to save your sanity this summer from Jo and Richard at 4 Points Leisure

• On the subject of holidays, a story from my husband about a seaside visit that takes an unexpected turn – You’ve Been So Kind.

• See this week’s Local News for usual slices of life including some thoughts about our voting system, how crop circles can make a profit for a farmer (but usually don’t), some council initiatives and information on community transport schemes

See below for a selection of upcoming local events.

[email protected]


Click here for remaining events of Hungerford Arts Festival (HADCAF) including walks, town quiz, Tea & Mozart, Tennis Club & Allotment open days, kids’ theatre and Ben Waters Big Band

Wantage Summer Festival – still plenty to enjoy until 20 July including jazz, ghost walks, Pandemonium, Michael Jackson Tribute and National Theatre Live

Marlborough Open Studios Amazing range of local talent from jeweller Theresa Hing in East Garston to Hungerford, Marlborough to Devizes.

Fri 14 July

An Evening of Wine Tasting Fri 14 July The Beacon, Wantage Unusual Grape Varieties with Brian Davis. £20 entry.
Life’s Merry Go Round 8pm Croft Hall, Hungerford. An hilarious light-musical entertainment reflecting life’s ups and downs, including popular songs from the Thirties to the Sixties.
More on the PP Calendar

Sat 15 July

Trindledown NAWT Open Day 11am Trindledown Farm nr Great Shefford. Fun dog show, stalls, BBQ.
East Garston Village Fete 12am-4.30pm Jubilee Meadow. Lots of fun including informal dog show, tug of war, egg throwing competition, water-bomb cricket, white elephant, BBQ, bar and lots more.
Heartstone Art Exhibition at Maddle Farm, Upper Lambourn 15-23 July (see link for times) in aid of Riding for the Disabled and the Heartstone foundation which supports young artists
Ben Waters Big Band 8pm John O’Gaunt School, Hungerford. Enjoy a great night out with Ben Waters, one of Europe’s supreme boogie piano players and his big band.
More on the PP Calendar

Sun 16 July

Shaw House Summer Fair 11am-4pm Shaw House, Newbury RG14 2DR
Great Shefford Craft & Horticultural Show Great Shefford Village Hall.  All entries to be set up by 11.00am.  Judging 11:30am-12:30pm.  Viewing 12:30pm-2pm.  Prize giving 2pm.  Entry form in the Village Magazine or from Viv on 648330 or [email protected].
Tennis Open Day 10am-4pm Hungerford Tennis Club – tennis fun & games for all ages and Wimbledon Men’s final on TV.
Newbury Carnival parade from 2pm features everything from the West Indian 45 performer strong Rampage Mas Band to a local Elvis Tribute band.  Fete, stage & activities 12 – 6pm in Victoria Park

Weds 19 July

Afternoon Tea in Aldworth 2.30-4.40pm St Mary’s Church: a chance to admire the 14th-century effigies of the Aldworth Giants and the Millennium Tapestry

Sat 22 July

Richmond Village Summer Fair 10am-4pm Richmond Retirement Village, Letcombe Regis
Books, Jigsaw, Trash and Treasure Indoor Car boot Sale 10am-4pm Shalbourne Village Hall. Donations gratefully received.

Coming Soon

This year’s NYT’s Edinburgh Fringe preview performance of The Glorious Invention of Emmanuel Stork, 7.30pm Sat 29 July Corn Exchange Newbury. Suitable for 7+ yrs

This year’s Boxford Masques production, All at Sea, Wed 26 to Sun 30 July at Welford House.


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Covering: Newbury, Thatcham, Hungerford, Marlborough, Wantage, Lambourn, Compton, Swindon & Theale