Penny Post July 20 – 27

Penny Post
Local News

This week’s local news including railway and library updates, several council initiatives, planning developments in Grove, Thatcham and Newbury and how to dress for swan counting.

Local Events – see below

Local Activities

Local Courses & Classes Guide – July/Aug – something for everyone from a two-day Encorum Portraiture Class to Stockfest workshops and a chance to dance in a spectacular outdoor event in Newbury

Guide to Kids’ Activities this Summer Holiday –  including DriveStart for 15-19 yrs next Thurs 27 July and a day out to admire the steam trains at Didcot Railway Centre


• Sue from Marlborough recommends Brown Dog Financial Planning: “Thanks for explaining our finances and the paperwork in normal English…”

• David W recommends The Pheasant“A superb short break that cannot be recommended enough. We’ll be back…”


• Wanted: small office space to rent between Hungerford and Newbury for expanding local Spanish school to host classes. To start sometime between Sept and Nov. Please contact Angela on [email protected]

• 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.

• Grazing land available between Hungerford and Kintbury.

Special Offers

• PP Readers are cordially invited to the Official Launch Party of Natura Spa at Audley Inglewood near Kintbury 6pm-9pm Fri 4 Aug for drinks and canapés, taster treatments, free product samples, on the night special offers, prize draw and live acoustic music. Children welcome. Please RSVP to Jade at Natura Spa on 01488 682298 or [email protected]

• Blandy’s at Inglewood are offering a Race Weekend Afternoon Tea with Pimm’s offer until Sunday – £18.95 for a glass of Pimm’s with your afternoon tea, or £28.95 for bottomless Pimms over 2 hours! Call on 01488 687010 to reserve your table! And why not include a treatment at Natura Spa – for a total of £60. Treatments on offer include: Full body massage, Indian head massage or Bliss body wrap. Book on 01488 682298 or [email protected]

Local Jobs

See the Penny Post website for local jobs including: Receptionist and Mechanics, Technicians and HGV Drivers ND Services, Lambourn Woodlands • Relief Support Workers and Full- and Part-time Support Workers, near Marlborough • Nursing and Domiciliary Care Staff, Letcombe Regis • Shop Manager, Hungerford, Newbury, Marlborough and Devizes • Commis ChefFront of House StaffHousekeeperChef de Partie and Night Porter, all at The Three Swans in Hungerford • Part-time Learning Support Assistant, Alder Bridge Steiner Waldorf School  • Care Assistants, Brendoncare Froxfield • Technical Support Coordinator Hungerford • Charity Shop Volunteers, Hungerford • Homecare Assistants, throughout West Berkshire.

• 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 and 10 students at John O’Gaunt School in Hungerford. Full training provided. Application deadline: 28 July.

• “I want to know that I will be able to get a job…” Vanessa at CareersTutor discusses choices faced today by 16-year olds

• Tom Shaw Stewart, age 20, studying Economics at Exeter. Friendly and organised. Flat rate of £7 per hour for any job, until 5 August. Please message or call me on 07972 351 716.

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!

• welcome to Montagues Hair Design at the top of Hungerford High Street with their Monty’s Express Glam Up & Go service now available for weekends, special events and weekday pampers – from signature blow dries to classy and cute updos with a splash of make-up!• 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.


• 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). (This quiz is proving popular so Sue at Pixie Ink has kindly offered a 15% discount to everyone who gets the right answer).

• Arts for Hungerford Literary Festival invites you to enter their adult writing competition with the chance to win £50 of book tokens and Children’s writing competition to win £25 of book tokens. Entry deadlines: Mon 14 Aug.


• A great video about Elite Garage Services in Newbury and their sophisticated workshop technology that analyses work required on any model or age of car. Click here for more about Elite Garage

• Due to expansion, ND Services in Lambourn Woodlands is recruiting mechanics, HGV driversand an afternoon receptionist who has motor industry experience

• Reminder that Cliff at Four Oaks Cars in Kintbury has an executive eight-seater (plus luggage space) and can take groups for day trips or to an airport or harbour. He can also take someone in a wheelchair or two bikes. He has even rescued a couple of cyclists this summer who had broken down on the road.

Charity Plugs

• Could you help a child find the fun in reading? Do you have two an hour and a half to spare in the afternoons during school term time? The ABC to Read charity is  desperate for more volunteers from West Berkshire to mentor children that are struggling to read and lack confidence within Thatcham, Newbury, Hungerford, Lambourn and Theale.  Volunteers will be trained and supported. Please enquire at [email protected]

• 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]

• Volunteer welders are urgently required by the Swindon and Cricklade Heritage Railway – click here for more.

• Hungerford Town Band is looking to upgrade its musical instruments, some of which are nearing the end of their musical life.

• 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.

• Click for photos and results of the Flower and Produce show at the recent East Garston fete.

• 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

• we’ve reached the season of surplus courgettes so here’s a Creamy Courgette & Avocado Soup recipe by Kay van Beersum that’s quick and delicious served cold

•  if you missed Newbury Carnival last Sunday here is a quick taste of the incredible costumes and dancing of the Rampage Mas Band at the fete in Victoria Park – expertly compered by Julian from Kennet Radio

•  a much smaller event but with a large amount of fun and games (especially the competitive egg throwing competition) was our village fete in East Garston. Well done to the produce show winners!

• Festival season is now in full swing and marquees and tents are a must for any festival so do check out Redcrest Events fab range of Pagodas, Pole Tents or Exotic Indian Tents for your Dance Tents, Band Tents, Comedy Tents, Chill Out areas,

• 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

•  Good luck to the young singers from across Berkshire who will be performing at the Royal Albert Hall this Sun 23 July as part of the BBC Proms Series 2017.

• See this week’s Local News for usual slices of life including Cat’s Brain Barrow, the testing of the bi-mode trains, Hungerford’s skate park, adopting a phone box and aquatic Beatlemania.

• The latest song from my husband Brian is Infinite, inspired by the moving and thought-provoking short film of the same name which was shown, along with a dozen others, at the Box Film Festival at Greenham Arts last month.

• Don’t miss this year’s NYT Edinburgh Fringe preview performance at the Corn Exchange – see listing below for The Glorious Invention of Emmanuel Stork on Sat 29 July. NYT is an award-winning youth theatre group that has been performing in Edinburgh for nearly 20 years now to rave reviews!

See below for a selection of upcoming local events.

[email protected]

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.

Weds 26 – Sun 30 July

Boxford Masques production, All at Sea, Wed 26 to Sun 30 July at Welford House. This production is set on an ocean liner and promises to be spectacular!

Sat 29 July

Wantage Farmers Market 8.30am – 1pm
Woolton Hill Farmers Market 10am – 1pm, St Thomas’ Church Hall in Woolton Hill, just south of Newbury.
Steaming Weekend at Crofton Beam Engines on the Kennet & Avon Canal nr Wilton Windmill
The Glorious Invention of Emmanuel Stork, 7.30pm Corn Exchange Newbury. Suitable for 7+ yrs


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