Parracombe Pieces – August 2014


Parracombe Pieces
Who’d live anywhere else!

On the outskirts of Paignton where I used to live as a child there was, well still is, a Lammas lane where we often went for a walk. Of course, at the time it was a country lane with hedges, now it is a built up residential area. But it got me thinking about the word Lammas which is again the name for an old country tradition like Michaelmas and wassailing. August 1st is Lammas Day, from Anglo-Saxon, hlaf-mas, or “loaf-mass”, the festival of the wheat harvest, and is the first harvest festival of the year. On this day it was customary to bring to church a loaf made from the new crop, which began to be harvested at Lammastide. The loaf was blessed, and in Anglo-Saxon England it might be employed afterwards to work magic. A book of Anglo-Saxon charms directed that the lammas bread be broken into four bits, which were to be placed at the four corners of the barn, to protect the garnered grain. In many parts of England, tenants were bound to present freshly harvested wheat to their landlords on or before the first day of August.

In previous editions, I have mentioned Buchan’s warm and cold periods, Alexander Buchan, being an eminent Scottish climatologist who believed there were annual patterns in the weather. In August, expect a Buchan’s warm period between the 12th and 15th of the month. Rainfall for June 2014, 69.5 mm – 2.78 inches. Compared to June 2013, 59 mm – 2.36 inches. Thank you Linda for the figures.

A very big “thank you” to Kevin Green, Tim Holland, Coral Grist, Steve Cheetham, Joan Homewood, Dee and all those who supported our exhibition and sale of local art and craft. We made a grand total £260 for S.A.N.D.S. (Stillbirth And Neonatal Death charity offering support to anyone affected by such loss of a baby). There was a wonderful display of visual art, weaving, spinning, pottery, knitting and sewing – all enjoyed over afternoon tea with generously donated, scrumptious scones and cakes. We look forward to seeing everyone again on September 9th when our regular monthly Craft Group meetings resume.

At school, well done to all of the Youngberries who participated in the Federation Sports Day event, they all worked so hard and supported each other in the team events and tried their hardest in the individual running races. In Literacy the children have been exploring adjectives and have written their own wonderful descriptions of our first broad bean! You may be thinking now that broad beans aren’t the most exciting stimuli to base descriptive writing on but the excitement of picking it and the discovery inside the case of the beans led to children eagerly writing their most successful independent sentences yet! Come and have a read of them in our role play area. We are now in the process of editing our recount writing about our trip to Lynmouth. The children have ordered photos, planned and written a rough draft which we are now evaluating and adding to in order to improve it. In our maths the children have been exploring subtraction using different methods and have been using money and the concept of giving change in our continuous provision so the children can use their skills and knowledge in a real life context.

Elderforests enjoyed their trip to Exmoor Zoo. The visit provided an inspirational start to our new literacy sequence based upon the legend, ‘How the Hummingbird got its colours’. The children will be writing their own ‘legends’ based upon animals that they saw at the zoo. At the end of the day the children were very proud when one of the keepers approached the class and thanked them for their exemplary behaviour throughout the day – well done Elderforests!

In maths the children continue to work upon their knowledge and understanding of the number system, as well as weights and measures. They have been undertaking a wide range of practical activities to help them progress their learning, including weighing potatoes and other assorted cooking ingredients. The children have also started to learn their dance for our summer production, Move It!

t the July Parish council meeting, councillors approved planning applications for height reduction to 3 ash trees at Pencombe House to enable satellite TV reception and the proposed erection of an agricultural building on land at Chapman’s Burrows, Parracombe.

There are still 2 vacancies on the council to be filled by co-option and residents should contact any Council member or the Clerk if they would be interested in becoming a Councillor.

Provision of a defibrillator and oxygen cylinder for first aid treatment in the village, there are two options; Option 1 – an accreditation scheme, where residents would be responsible for the purchase and maintenance of a defibrillator and organising an annual training course and would be on the 999 computer aided dispatch system. Option 2- A fully supported package £400 PA for 4 years. Includes loan and maintenance of a defibrillator, training and listing on the 999 computer aided dispatch system. Parish Councillors were all in favour of option 2. The TAP fund could be used to support this project as East Down are considering a similar scheme.

Correspondence had been received from James Tucker, concerning the beech tree at the top of Tarr path, with a tree surgeon’s report and a report regarding damage to his barn, further to his request that an application be made to remove the tree. Not withstanding the fact that the Parish Council does not own the tree they are willing to make the application for felling. This will be subject to public consultation and ENPA consent. Once work is completed the Parish Council will have no further responsibility in this matter. Clerk is to speak with Robin Offer again and to seek a 3rd quotation for the work and to put a notice in the village newsletter on this matter. Clerk has also been asked to contact the owners of the Terrace about hedge maintenance. The Clerk and some Parish Councillors are meeting with representatives from ENPA, DCC and Highways to look at improving safety on the A39.

At Coronation Playing Field, the Clerk would contact Simon Rawle about welding work and request it be completed before the school holiday begins. Cllr Edgington to ask Mark Dallyn to re-tension the top wire of the high fence. There are 2 party bookings for the Pavilion in July. Cllr Edgington to get quotes for some re-tiling work and to take out the locked storage area in the kitchen to make more space. In the Hard Court, Clerk would follow up quote for moss treatment again.

Payments were authorised for hire of the hall, clerk’s wages and expenses, SWW quarterly bill, toilet cleaning and Andrew von Koutrik- tree surgery. At close of business, council’s accounts were £16,390.94 in credit. In matters at chairman’s discretion, there had been several complaints about the amount of dog fouling in the village, the Pencombe Rocks road in particular. This is mainly from dogs running loose and from some visitors who may feel is it okay not to clear up in the countryside. The Clerk was asked to get some more signs to prevent fouling and ask Kevin to put a notice in the Community Newsletter. The next meeting will be on 10th Sept. 2014. Report prepared from draft minutes which may be amended before being approved and signed at the next meeting.

And a reminder that October and the flower-cum-railway festival fast approaches, so any contributions of exhibits and railway memorabilia, please contact Karen Farringdon or Sue Rawle to help them with assessing space needed and planning.

Best wishes to all
Mervyn and others.

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