Sept 2000
 
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Fr. Micheal's Farewell
 
On Sunday 2Oth August, after a comprehensive and lively sermon in which he stressed the importance of recognising the needs of the whole community, Michael Crow together with his wife Jean bade Farewell to the congregation of St Leonard's. In a short speech, Churchwarden Julian Taunton referred to Father Michael's initiative in setting up an opportunity for the P.C.C. to act as a "think Tank" with particular reference to the way forward for the Church in Flamstead. The fIrst item, "Family Worship" has already started and is well attended by young families in the village.
 
A toast was drunk to wish the couple a long and happy retirement. They were then presented with a cheque, which will be used to provide an item for their new home in Exeter.
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WE HAVE A NEW DISTRIBUTOR
 
After 12 years in office I have retired and been succeeded by CHRIS CADMAN of 32 Singlets Lane Flamstead. I wish to thank all those who have helped with collation, stitching, folding and street distribution over the years and for their cheerfulness and willingness at all times. It is interesting to note that the Flamstead Church & Village News and the Hertfordshire Countryside are delivered every month into over 300 of the 500 homes in the village.
 
This is a wonderful contact with the majority of villagers, who, subject to the many organisations submitting their copy on a regular basis keeps everyone informed.
 
Subscription payments for the Church & Village News amount to 1,000 per annum, the advertisement revenue at a further 1,000 and the distribution revenue of the Herts Countryside at 200 brings in a total to around 2,000.
 
With costs at a low 800 this leaves St Leonard's Church with a margin or around 1,400 per annum (these are estimated figures). All credit must be given to Churchwarden and Sacristan Jean King, who with the assistance of Andrew Harris, produces the magazine on computer and Copy Printer up to the "warehousing" stage when the collation team including Jean take over. The team would not be complete without the help and support of Jack Reylands who is doing a great job with the advertisements and always willing to give a hand with the distribution when needed.
 
Roy Welch
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September Reflections
 
The Annual meeting of the Bellringers at St Leonards Church on Saturday August 12th, was a great success -the weather was proper summer weather.
 
After some ringing and a short service of evensong there were refreshments outside in the Churchyard with homemade sandwiches and cakes and of course lots of chatter and laughter. Its always a pleasure to have the bellringers here and I was pleasantly surprised by several villagers who said how nice it was to hear the sound of the bells in the church again.
 
I know the sound of bells can be a very divisive subject for certain members of the village, but in my opinion the sound is very much preferable to so much of the noise we have to put up with these days. Our lives, it seems is lived so often against a background of noise - noise of aircraft taking off from Luton airport, noise of traffic from the motorway and roads -noise even from a neighbour's dog; or the cockerel in the morning, noise in the house from the radio or television programme, especially if we have young people in the house.
 
So often we need to find a quiet place -A place where we are not bombarded by noise, but a place where we can listen in our own time to those things that we want to hear. Maybe it's a favourite piece of music which we can concentrate on, and enjoy the melody and intricacies of the piece.
 
Maybe its time spent listening to the sounds of nature -the distant call of the blackbird or the thrush -the sound of a murmuring stream, or the roar of the sea, whatever takes our fancy. Maybe its a time of conversation, a time of listening and sharing and laughter with our friends and acquaintances and the need to listen -really listen to those around us so that we can understand them and see where they are coming from.
 
But the most important listening is a time of quiet when we can listen to ourselves and through ourselves to listen to the God that is within each one of us. For God is surely there in the quiet, in sounds of nature, in the music and in the sharing and laughter of those around us and in our prayer time. We need to listen to them all so that we can be stilled and strengthened by His presence.
 
Fr. George
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FLAMSTEAD TABLE TENNIS CLUB
 
Although called a table tennis club, we are more of a social club of which table tennis is the main activity. During the season, we play table tennis each Tuesday in the Village Hall starting at about 8.15pm. In addition, we hold social functions such as quiz nights, darts evenings, theatre trips and dinner dances etc. throughout the year.
 
For the keener table tennis player, we have two teams playing in division 2 and 3 of the Hemel Hempstead League. Our home nights are Monday & Thursday. The new season starts on Tuesday 5th September at 8.15pm. in the Village Hall.
 
New members, aged 18 or over, of any standard or even complete beginners, will be most welcome. A small charge is made to cover refreshments and equipment.
 
For further details, please call either Jack on 01582440121 or Lorraine on 01582840101.
 
J Reyland
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FLAMSTEAD AND TROWLEY WI AUGUST SUMMER FEAST
 
This month was made special as a promotional open evening with a speaker. First, our visitors were made welcome -they included two from Kingsbury, Sheila Muston and Margaret Grant, the speaker Mr Robert Pounder with his wife Audrey, and Eric Edwards.
 
The meeting opened with the introduction of the speaker Mr Robert Pounder who gave a lively talk (illustrated with slides, on one of Surreys best kept secrets -The RIVER WEY NAVIGATION from Weybridge to Guildford and Goda1rning managed by the National Trust. The river is 20 miles long and in some places shallow and meandering, flowing through a valley of some of the most fertile land in Surrey. In the late 1600's SIR RICHARD WESTON, an agricultural reformer decided to dig an irrigation ditch all around his estate, SUTTON PLACE to improve his farm land. Sir Richard whilst in Holland learnt about canals and came home determined to make the River Wey more navigable. This was the time of the Civil War and Oliver Cromwell. An Act of Parliament had to be passed to allow work on the River. It was seen as a quick way of getting all important gunpowder and crops to London. The boats used were wide barges (one is on view at DapduneWharfin Guildford) and were made to just fit the locks. Revenue for the upkeep of the Navigation was provided by tolls paid at the locks. When it was opened it was a bit like opening the Ml. an almost direct route from Guildford to the Thames and hence to London.
 
The waterway went into decline when the Railways arrived in approximately 1837 and goods could be transported even more quickly and directly. The Wey Navigation had seen some prosperous times and for a while was London's 'last route to the sea' with the addition of the Arun Canal to Arundel then to Chichester and finally to Portsmouth, a useful asset when we were fighting the French.
 
The Navigation was still in use in 1955 with William Stevens & Sons transporting up to 80 tons of corn or coal per barge. The last working barge took corn to a Treadmill in 1979. The corn to be ground into cattle feed. The treadmill needed two men to walk it round (same principle as a small hamster wheel!) Apparently a group from W .1. went to visit and were allowed to have a go. The last generation of the Steven's family was managing the mill and was the Fourth generation of the Steven's family to work on the Navigation.
 
An Endowment pays for the National Trust to run the navigation which has to be maintained as a waterway. After storms the N .T .has to move swiftly into action in order to minimise flooding in the centre of Guildford. Water management and care of towpaths is undertaken by N .T .as are small pockets of land m the form of water meadows which are of special scientific interest. The Wey is mainly used now for pleasure purposes.
 
The vote of thanks was given by JULIE SCURFIELD for an excellent and interesting talk.
 
The second part of the evening was the feast, and it was a feast- cooked meats, gala pie, homemade coleslaw, grated carrot & raisins, rice salads, green salads, tomatoes etc. served with brown or white French bread and various dressings.
 
This was followed by decadent, delectable desserts -summer puddings, trifles, fruit salads, mousse. There was red & white wine, fruit juice, and tea or coffee to finish.
 
Diets were abandoned! Don't you wish you had some ladies. There was a successful raffle but no competition this month.
 
The next meeting is on September 141h with Mr JOHN BRODERICK speaking on 'WOMEN IN ROMAN TIMES , The competition has to be A 'Roman Relic'!
 
Ladies of Flamstead come and give us a try, for more information ring DOREEN EDWARDS on 840551.
 
Julie Scurfield
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PRE-SCHOOL NEWS
 
The Summer holidays are over and for another group of parents it's time to let their 2 year olds go it alone for the first time, as they start Pre-School. Do I hear distant cheers?!
 
I've just taken on the role of chairman of the Playgroup committee and want to take this chance to sing the Pre-School's praises.
 
My 3 year old daughter has gained hugely in confidence after being at Playgroup for 6 months. She thoroughly enjoys her time there and always comes out bubbling with enthusiasm. The success of the Playgroup is mainly down to the staff, who are well- qualified, always positive, and above all, genuinely love the children. The older youngsters who are rising 4 years old, have now left to start at the nursery at Flamstead school, or further afield. It means that we now have a comparatively small group of 2 and 3 year olds, and are looking to increase our numbers.
 
The staff work towards the "Early Learning Goals" laid down by the Government, with the emphasis on the children having fun, while learning to socialise and preparing for their more formal education when they go to school.
 
If you're interested in fining out more about the Pre-School, come along to the Village Hall anytime between 9am and 11.55 am Monday to Thursday to talk to the staff and see the children in action. Or call me (Carol) on 01582 840922.
 
We are keen to find out potential future intake numbers so if you have a baby and are planning to send him/her to the pre school when they're old enough, please call to register your interest.
 
Carol Gibson
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