Penny Post Weekly Newsletter Aug 17-24

Penny Post
Local News  

This week includes the Greenham Gap, a logo on a stick, Hungerford Post Office back online, planning priorities and Pavlov’s dog.

Local Events – see below
Local Activities

Guide to Kids’ Activities this Summer Holiday including:
• STFC Football Camp in Swindon next week
• Summer music activities at Hogan Academy in Newbury: Uke Workshop Mon 21 Aug,Singing Workshop Tues 22 , Live Sound Weds 23, DJ Workshop Thurs 24 – plus Funk ‘n Groove, World Drumming, Guitar maintenance

Guide to Local Courses in September coming soon – please reply to this asap if you are running a course you’d like us to include

Complete Beginners Spanish Classes start first week of Sept with Angela Quiroga in Wickham nr Newbury. Small, semi-personalised one-hour classes of five. Click link for dates and times.


• Anne from Newbury recommends Woods Property Solutions: “Thanks for the work you did for us – a lovely job.”

• John Fletcher recommends The Swan at Great Shefford: “One of the best steaks I’ve ever eaten…” (FYI they have Tuesday Steak Nights – two Aberdeen Angus Steaks and bottle of house wine for £26.95)

• Jenny Clayton Smith from Lambourn recommends Jane Foster of Jane’s Helping Hands, ‘It was amazing to have Jane’s support for my elderly mother at a family wedding. A big heartfelt thank you from all of us’.


• Outdoor party games for loan (including hooplah, deck quoits and a set of wooden nine-pins with three balls) by Lambourn Festival Committee

• For Sale: Olympus Sport Mini stepper Hardly used. £30.

• Four matching rolled maps of London from 1805, 1897, 1920 and 1947. All at 1:50,000 (same scale as OS Landrangers) and covering the area roughly within the present-day M25. Each map area 80 x 80cm, sheet size 100 x 89cm. Donation to Penny Post requested. Email or call 01488 648 110.

• Two framed and mounted maps, of Gloucestershire and Northumberland, reproductions of John Speed’s maps from 1610. Frame approx 55cm x 44cm. Donation to Penny Post requested. Email or call 01488 648 110.


To Rent
Hungerford: a three-bedroom family house with garage. See Nina Clark Lettings for more details
Froxfield: a newly-refurbished three-bed semi-detached house with lovely rural views and driveway parking. Available now. Unfurnished. See Nye & Co. for more details
• Hungerford: a spacious two-bed first-floor maisonette a moment’s walk from the High Street. £725pcm. Available early September. See Nye & Co. for more details
• Hungerford: recently refurbished house one double bedroom, occasional bedroom/study, residents parking. See Nina Clark Lettings for more details
Hungerford: a newly built, immaculately presented, detached three-bedroom house situated a short walk from the town centre. See Nye & Co. for more details
• Hungerford: a two-bedroom first-floor flat situated a short walk from the town centre. See Nye & Co. for more details
• Kintbury: a double-bedroom annexe to let on the outskirts of Kintbury, available by the night or for longer periods. For more details, please click here.

For Sale
• HungerfordHopgrass Open Barn £595,000 with Nye & Co.

Special Offers

• Book a cut and blow dry at Montagues in Hungerford before 1 September and get 10 complimentary foils to add a flash of colour and frame your face! Call 01488 681088 now to book with Hannah or Kelly on promotional days: Tuesday, Wednesday and Saturdays. Quote promo code PROMO01 when booking to avoid disappointment. Apologies for our error last week – total cost is £38 (including free foils worth £30)

• A friend of ours in Wantage is selling high-quality, unbreakable Zillerate sports sunglasses on Amazon for £15.99 (£10 off).

Local Jobs

See the Penny Post website for local jobs including:
Skin Clinic Receptionist, near Aldermaston • Chef, Wickham • Gardener, Uffington • Domestic Housekeeping Staff, Hungerford • Care Assistants, Froxfield • Hair Stylist, Kintbury • Part-time Bookkeeper, Hungerford • Part-time Audio Secretary, near Bedwyn • Boatmasters, Hungerford • Full-time Bar and Waiting Staff, Shefford Woodlands • Chef de PartieSous ChefBar Team LeaderAssistant Restaurant ManagerBar SupervisorLeisure Team MemberRestaurant SupervisorFood and Beverage Team Member and Kitchen Porter, Chilton Foliat • Gardener/ Groundsman/ Maintenance Person, Wantage • Music Sales Assistant, Welford • Housekeeper, Assistant Housekeeper and Car Parking Assistant, Bagnor • Freelance Digital Marketing Manager, Hungerford • Volunteer AONB Ambassadors, throughout the area • Nursing and Domiciliary Care Staff, Letcombe Regis • Commis Chef, Front of House Staff, Housekeeper and Night Porter, all in Hungerford.

Local Businesses 

Animals & AgricultureAutomotive • 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!


• Our Railway Quiz has now closed: click on the link to see the answers. Congratulations to Annabel Bailey of Great Shefford whose correct entry was first out of the hat. She wins a family ticket (worth £60) to see The Flying Scotsman at Didcot Railway Centre over the August Bank Holiday weekend.

• Still time to enter our Hungerford-themed Penny Post August Quiz  to win a meal for two and a bottle of wine at The Three Swans Hotel which re-opened last week. We’ve had several correct entries already (and at least one incorrect one – sorry Mr Lumley: try again) but it doesn’t have to end there. Entry deadline: Fri 25 Aug.

• Lambourn Festival Photography Competition – see link for categories. Entry deadline: Wed 23 Aug.

• Summer in the North Wessex Downs Photo competition to win a hamper of local produce. Entry deadline: Thurs 31 Aug.

Charity Plugs

• Daisy’s Dream Charity that supports bereaved children in Berkshire is celebrating 21 years of amazing work this year. The charity was started by local resident Penny Lowe following the unexpected death of her husband.To mark this significant milestone, Daisy’s Dream are planning a spectacular ‘Imagination Ball’ at the exclusive Phyllis Court Members Club on Saturday 7th October. Set along the banks of the River Thames in Henley, the club’s ballroom will play host to an evening of imagination and wonder, and everyone is welcome. Tickets are priced from just £85 and are available to purchase at

• Do you love our local landscape? Volunteer ambassadors requested by the North Wessex Downs AONB to help others appreciate our precious chalk downlands

• 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).

Four legged Friends

• thanks to everyone who offered advice last week for our reader with a dog with allergies that cause itchy skin.

• top tips on how to prepare for getting a puppy from Jill Thorpe at Develop Your Dog. Jill is starting new fortnightly gun-dog training courses in September. Call 07901 651 663.

• We’re in the market for a pair of short-hair tabby kittens, preferably male. Please reply to this email if you know of any.

• A few days ago I read a story about an American tourist in East Anglia who’d been alarmed by a road-works sign about cat’s eyes being removed. I mentioned this to my husband.  I’ll let him take over from here

• Grazing land is available between Hungerford and Kintbury. For more information, please click here.

Four Wheeled Friends 

• Well done to the organisers of Lambourn Festival Car Treasure Hunt last Sunday. Brian met several groups of people in our village holding sheets of paper and peering at house names and other objects. He asked one couple if they needed any help, thinking they might be lost. They offered him the quiz question sheet. He, the long-time local resident, confidently took it. There were 20 or so images, admittedly slightly obscure, some from here in East Garston. He couldn’t identify a single one. Humiliated, he slunk back indoors…

• Karen Barlow recommends Elite Garages in Newbury because ‘they always seek the most cost effective solution to our car problems’

• Stockfest Classic Car Show Sun 20 Aug (with vintage craft fair and live music). Classic cars need to arrive and park between 11am-12noon (no need to book).

• Drivers are urgently needed to take young carers from across West Berkshire to and from Newbury on Monday evenings. This could be in your own car or in West Berkshire’s Young Carers nine-seater mini bus. Please click here if you can help.

Seasonal Snippets

• If you’ve been to Italy this summer and are missing the food, or you wish you had been to Italy but haven’t, here is a Pork Steaks with Tuscan Beans recipe from Romilla Arber at the Honesty Cookery School.

• We went to the re-opening of The Three Swans in Hungerford last week – what a transformation. They’re still looking for staff – see the ‘Jobs’ section above. Another recently re-opened Swan in Great Shefford serves gluten free beer.

• So we now accept that August is the wettest month, averaging 4.9 inches in these parts. The second wettest? Step forward January, averaging 4 inches.

• Thanks to Hungerford photographer Tony Bartlett for his physics lesson this week…I had madly rushed to video the Union of the Pacific chuffing merrily across Hungerford High Street railway bridge last Saturday, only to find if you blinked you missed it and there was no visible steam. Tony has reminded me that you can’t actually see genuine steam: it’s transparent and colourless in its gaseous form. If the ambient temperature is cold enough (ie not in August, however wet it might be) you will see condensed steam vapour in the exhaust from the loco. If the fireman happens to be stoking up at the time the best you can hope for is some smoke effects. It’s best to shoot from where the train is restarting from a stop if you want to get the smoke and steam aerial displays.

• Have you had a merry or morose A-level results day (or should I say #ResultsDay2017)? If Plan Bs are required there is good advice here from Vanessa, from Careers Tutor. Newbury College are offering a GCSE Results Day Advice Clinic next Thurs 24 Aug 9.30am – 4.30pm where you can get advice on your options post-GCSE.

• Thanks to Angela Atkinson for blogging about the Swindon Old Town Art Trail starting this Mon 21 Aug. All welcome to the launch party on 5pm Tues 29 Aug. Also Swindon Open Studios coming soon.

• See this week’s Local News for usual slices of life including two ten-year delays (one more understandable than the other), a ghastly example of ‘customer experience’, a party, an ale festival, a violin and some best-kept villages.

• I’ve just made a short video about the new Chat Mats and Companions Hours in local cafes organised by Coffee Companions (run by the amazing Caroline Billington in Newbury who also runs Community Christmas). Next week the participating cafes in Newbury (Empire Cafe, Kings Cafe, Coffee#1, MacDonalds) and Thatcham (Pineapple Cafe, Courtyard Cafe) will be offering discounts on drinks during their Companions Hours (see link for times). To get your discount, you just need to take with you a Chat Mat with discount vouchers. If you haven’t got one yet, you can pick them up at Newbury & Thatcham Libraries.

• Two offerings from my husband this week: firstly an article about the unexpected problems caused by tidying an office, Dealing with Other Objects. Secondly, a song about…well, you can judge for yourself what it’s about: Satisfied

See below for a selection of upcoming local events.


PS: To receive this newsletter by email every Thursday please click here to subscribe (no cost).



Stockfest ’17 – until 25 Aug offering over 20 events including Wild Writing Workshop Fri 18 Aug. Many are family-friendly and free.

Lambourn Carnival – something for everyone throughout August.

Thurs 17 Aug

Mozart’s Last Year, with Kennet Opera 7.30 Sutton Hall, Stockcross. Be prepared for the comic, sacred and magical. Seating is at tables, so bring along your drinks and make believe you’re at a Vienna cafe. Part of StockFest17.
More on the PP Calendar.

Fri 18 Aug

Stockfest Rock ‘n’ Blues with Chicago 9 8pm Sutton Hall, Stockcross. Killer guitar licks, screaming harmonica, a thumping back beat and savage vocals.
I’m All Right Jack – classic Ealing comedy, Sutton Hall, Stockcross.
More on the PP Calendar.

Sat 19 Aug

HAHA Horticultural Show, 10am-2pm, British Legion Hungerford.
More on the PP Calendar.

Sun 20 Aug

Memorial Service in remembrance of the Hungerford Tragedy, 10am St Lawrence’s Church.
More on the PP Calendar.

Mon 21 Aug

Neighbourhood Watch Meeting, 7.30pm West Berkshire Council offices. Updates from the police and fire services. Talk by Susan Powell about Building Communities Together.
More on the PP Calendar.

Wed 23 Aug

Ladies Club in the Valley of the Kennet, 7pm-9pm, The Pelican, Froxfield.
More on the PP Calendar.

Sat 26 – Mon 28 Aug

Visit the Flying Scotsman at Didcot Railway Centre with BBQ, real ale bar, railway fun and games and a chance to ride on the most famous train in the world.
Hungerford Club Real Ale Festival from 11am (noon on Sunday)  to 11pm.

Sun 27 Aug

The Pheasant’s Summer Party 4pm-late. Live music, magician, DJ, hog roast – and four bars.
Car Boot Sale, 8.30am-12.00pm, Thatcham Memorial Hall


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