WILL WE SHED TIERS?
On the face of it, it is simple. Do you agree or disagree with DCC’s proposals to
change from a three to a two tier education system in Purbeck? Parents, governors
and parish councils are divided about the issue and it has created pressure groups
on both sides of the argument; the overriding danger is, that in the melée, one goal
– to make sure St George’s School stays open on its present site -
So... what are the opposing arguments and how do they affect St George’s? Firstly, there are those who agree with the proposals. This ‘Yes’ (two tier) lobby say:
• Our national education system fits a two-
• Greater pupil numbers in the remaining schools will mean more resources being made available for each pupil.
• More staff within schools could cover more specialisms.
The increase in numbers, they add would ‘strengthen the church, provide more customers for our village shop and increase use of facilities such as the scout hut and village hall’. They also add that rejecting the proposals will “leave all schools in the Purbeck area with an uncertain future unable to access government investment”.
Within the current review document, if the two tier system is put into place, St George’s future is secured. However, since the review was first put up for discussion, there has been some strong lobbying in favour of keeping Swanage First School open (one of the two schools threatened with closure; St Mark’s C of E school being the other). Swanage First School supporters have successfully argued that, without it, there would be no choice of secular school in Swanage.
The ‘Yes’ lobby recognise that amended proposals might solve this not insignificant problem by combining the two C of E schools (St Mark’s and St George’s) on the Middle School site, thus keeping Swanage First School open. But, they acknowledge the need for any ‘Yes’ voter to make it abundantly clear to DCC that they are agreeing with the proposals as they currently stand which means St George’s remaining in situ.
The local ‘No’ (three tier) lobby oppose the closure of the Middle School and argue that Swanage is unlike other towns in that it is ‘geographically isolated’ and because of the predominance of ‘empty nesters and second homes young families already have enough reasons to shun the town’. They add:
• Most parents in Purbeck are satisfied with the three tier system and they don’t
• It won’t save as much money as DCC suggest and the claim, that its plan removes 1000 empty school places, is questionable.
• The suggestion that there is underperformance in year six was, in 2007, only true for one Middle School (Bovington).
So, would staying three tier mean that St George’s is safe? Not on your nelly... as the saying goes. Whatever happens, there has to be a reduction in school places and that, necessarily, means a reduction in schools and St George’s could still be one of them.
As both courses of action, Yes and No, could jeopardise St George’s future, the Governors,
staff and parents have formed an Action Group (flyer enclosed) with the sole purpose
of getting the community ‘proactive’ in its support of the School without having
to choose to vote Yes or No. They point out that the school is ‘popular and has an
excellent record of achievement with good OFSTED results’. They add that it has a
For these reasons if you value St George’s and would like to show your support, you can write to, or email, DCC (address below) by 4 March reiterating these and many other arguments why St George’s should stay. If we don’t do something now, we may all be shedding tears.
Director of Children & Young People, Dorset County Council, County Hall, Colliton Park, Dorchester, Dorset. DT1 1JX. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
FROM THE EDITOR
Welcome to the March Dubber and, as it’s my first edition, I hope you’ll all bear with me as I?find my feet. This month you will already see some changes; these have been brought about both by necessity and by design and I hope that you’ll like them. I’d like to thank Richard Evans for stepping into the breach last month and I’m also indebted to Chris Kwantes for the help he has given me as this one was prepared.
There is a great deal going on in the Parishes at the moment and some of it is quite contentious; sometimes, one issue seems to override all others and, this month, there has been a huge number of submissions about the future of St George’s School... enough to fill one Dubber! That is why, I’ve taken the unusual step of putting a discussion of the issue on the front cover and I’ve tried to summarise all arguments with as much parity as possible.
With this in mind, now is a good time to make sure that there is a clear line between news and opinion. For this reason, there is going to be a dedicated letters page where people can have their say... within reason! Perhaps, it won’t be possible to include all letters submitted every month but letters will still be printed on The Dubber website.
The task of making The Dubber more visually exciting is proving difficult. Unfortunately, the printer doesn’t like photos very much but line drawings are another matter... so if any of you fancy submitting some artwork with your articles... please do!
Advertising in The Dubber
At the moment, there is a waiting list for advertising within the magazine but, if you are interested, you can be placed on the waiting list. You will be contacted when you get near the top. All adverts get the same amount of space (8cm x 6cm) and the cost is £72 per year; this is the minimum run. Please contact Terry Whicker (email@example.com) for more details or bookings (additional contact details below). It is also possible to advertise at no charge on The Dubber website (www.thedubber.co.uk). Just log on and follow the instructions.
Contributions & Notifications
The editor welcomes news contributions as well as notifications of events within the Parishes for the What’s On section. These can be submitted online to firstname.lastname@example.org, by post to Terry Whicker (‘Bryher’, Valley Road, Harmans Cross, Dorset, BH20 5HU.) or by hand to St George’s Church or The Post Office, Langton Matravers. Contrary to indications in last month’s Dubber, online news contributions for Harmans Cross should be submitted to Alan Stephenson (Graphsteph@aol.com) who will be continuing to collate the news from that area. Roger Free has kindly agreed to edit the letters’ page; please send all letters to (email@example.com)
Deadline for Next Issue
The editor appreciates the early submission of contributions but, for those cutting it fine, the deadline for the April issue is noon on 20 March and it will be ready for stapling at noon on 24 March.
LETTER FROM THE RECTORY
I’m told one or two hardy souls were
seen beavering away on the new allotments, even in the
coldest weather, but we, less intrepid gardeners, waited for
the disruption and excitement of the snow to evaporate
before venturing out into the garden. In spite of our efforts, some areas in the Rectory garden are still the province of thorns and brambles... which made our reading of the
parable of the sower at 8 o’clock on Sunday morning (Sexagesima... such a lovely word) particularly apt. Good gardeners tell me the secret of gardening is soil preparation; I remind myself as I hack away at the bramble stems half an inch thick.
On Ash Wednesday, we changed the church colours from green for growing to purple for preparation. Preparing for Easter, or, as Father Timothy Radcliffe’s lent addresses are titled, preparing to be “Fully Alive...” So much of life can be used up, have the energy squeezed out by busyness or worry,
or like the hard soil, be trampled on by the hard knocks and
set backs which make us less open to growing and trying
Lent is “time out”, clearing space, paying attention to becoming and being the vibrant wholesome rounded human being each one of us has the potential to be. That may mean some drastic ground clearance, some painful grappling with brambles ...and heavy digging which Christians call prayer
and reflection ...or to change the metaphor, some spring cleaning and trips to the tip... but I’d vote for gardening over house work any day. As Dorothy Frances Gurney said: “One
is nearer God’s heart in a garden than anywhere else on earth.”
Priest in charge
Kingston, Langton Matravers, & Worth Matravers
SERVICE TIMES IN THE PARISHES ?
SUNDAY 1 MARCH
8am Holy Communion Langton
9.30am Hosanna! Langton
10.30am Benefice Communion Langton
5pm Informal Service Worth
6.30pm Evensong Langton
SUNDAY 8 MARCH
8am Holy Communion Worth
9.45am Holy Communion Langton
11.15am Family Service Kingston
6.30pm Evensong & Said
SUNDAY 15 MARCH
8am Holy Communion Langton
9.45am Family Communion Langton
11am Holy Communion Worth
11.15am Holy Communion Kingston
6.30pm Evensong Langton
SUNDAY 22 MARCH
8am Holy Communion Worth
9.45am Mothering Sun Service Langton
11.15am Mothering Sun Service Kingston
6pm Mothering Sun Service Harmans
SUNDAY 29 MARCH
8am Holy Communion Worth
9.45am Holy Communion Langton
11.15am Mattins Kingston
6pm Evensong Langton
10.15am Holy Communion CW1 (trad) Langton
?CHANGES IN SERVICE TIMES
There is predominantly the same pattern of services each month but there are often changes for festivals so please check the weekly notice sheets within the church or in the church porch.
The parishes are members of ACTS (The Association of Churches Together) and a list of services of other denominations locally can be found in the porch of
St George’s Church, Langton.
ST GEORGE’S NEW HEADTEACHER
The Governors are delighted to announce the appointment of Anita Brown as head teacher. Mrs Brown is a dedicated and gifted teacher, who says that leading a village school is, for her, a dream come true. She has been acting head through a time of uncertainty (the Purbeck review) and we are most grateful to her, and all our dedicated, and talented staff, for making sure that in all the uncertainty, the school continues to deliver the equality education for which it is valued, and most of all, that our children are nurtured, encouraged to develop and are happy. Advance notice. The school Easter service is 9.15 am, 3 April. Judith
“WHERE HAVE ALL THE CHILDREN GONE?..”
Thirty five years ago, when I started farming, I would put on my long-
In those days, when it snowed heavily, we would pump the milk into a black concentrated orange juice container and take it to the central milk pickup point within the parish. Those were the days when in this part of the world, farms still had dairy cows. Because of the need to get milk to market, farmers had to get on and clear the roads. The local authority, Dorset County Council, provided snow blades and employed the local farmers to clear the roads. Depending on the season, this could be quite a lucrative contract. Children, and there were children living in the villages in those days, walked to the village school, as did the schoolteachers. The schools seldom closed because of bad weather. Today, because the children now live several miles from their schools, and the teachers even further, it only takes a little snow to close school.
There are twice as many 50 to 65-
There is no easy solution, were that the case, the local authorities would have put systems in place years ago. Surely, however, part of the solution is to keep industries local, to enable young people to live close to their place of work, for people to shop locally, to make it easier for people to run their own businesses from home. Within agriculture, we can be very grateful to the local authority for their support of projects such as Purbeck Products. This group is very grateful to the huge support that they receive from many of the residents of Purbeck. The ethos of buying your food locally from local farmers has produced steady growth for the market at Putlake Adventure Farm in Langton Matravers, which takes place on the second Saturday of every month... thank you! The range of produce offered has increased, as more small producers become members of this organisation.
If the small producer can keep going by finding a ready market locally, then maybe there is hope in some small way for the job prospects of young people with some of the farming families. This model might produce a way forward for the Isle of Purbeck as a whole. Christopher Lees
NEWS FROM THE PURBECK MARINE WILDLIFE RESERVE
With equinox low tides and milder spring weather ahead, it will be an exciting time to explore the strandline and rockpools of the rocky shore. Already at Kimmeridge we are finding sea wash balls, the empty bundles of eggs from the common whelk cast ashore by the high tide. Many more eggs from fish, sea snails and skates are hidden from view under seaweeds, gravel and boulders and will be hatching very soon! See what you can find at low tide but remember to replace any protective seaweed or boulders carefully. Why not attend our Easter Marine Egg Hunt on Friday 10 April or Great Eggcase hunt on Tuesday 14 April and see if we can beat last year’s record numbers?
The marine centre aquariums have been undergoing a facelift with new theming and
species ready for the forthcoming season. Pop in and meet the wardens over half term.
The centre will be open daily throughout the week from 12-
Our winter newsletter is available to download from our website www.dorsetwildlife.co.uk/marineconservation. The last edition includes information and stunning images on recent sightings, research and conservation. Why not email a request to be added to our distribution list to keep abreast of the news from the Reserve.
Survey the Underwater world
Are you a BSAC Sports or PADI Advanced diver and keen to be involved in marine conservation whilst learning about the fascinating underwater world? Join Seasearch, a voluntary diving survey group and help map the seabed. The Dorset coordinator will be hosting an Observer course training day at Kimmeridge on Saturday 28 March. For details contact Kathryn Dawson on or visit the website www.seasearch.co.uk.
Emma Rance, Marine Warden.
HAVE PRIDE IN PURBECK – GIVE IT A SPRING CLEAN
Volunteers are being urged to show some community spirit and sign up for the ‘Pride
in Purbeck’ Spring Clean 2009. Purbeck District Council is calling for groups to
come forward and register for the annual tidy-
Residents and community groups are being encouraged to take part and spruce up their neighbourhood and the District Council will provide advice, plastic sacks and gloves and will pick up the rubbish collected.
Councillor Paul Johns, Built Environment Spokesperson, said: “This is a great opportunity to clean up those eyesore areas, particularly in places that the council is not expected to clean. Much of Purbeck is designated as an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and the spring clean is a wonderful way of keeping the district looking spick and span.
“The district council is very keen to help residents keep their neighbourhoods tidy.”
Anyone is welcome to join in. To take part in the Pride in Purbeck Spring Clean,
contact Neil Randall at Purbeck District Council or email neilrandall@Purbeck-
WOMEN’S WORLD OF PRAYER
This year’s service will be held in Worth Matravers Church on Friday 6 March at 10am. The service will be led by Marion Holloway and the preacher will be the Revd Anthea Hagenbach, curate at St Edward’s Corfe Castle.
Coffee and cheese scones after the service will be in the village hall. The service has been prepared by the women of Papua New Guinea.
Lent Lunches will be held in the Village Hall in Langton Matravers on five Wednesdays in Lent: 4, 11,18,25 March & 1 April at 12:30pm.
Donations for your lunch after expenses have been met will be shared between the Undertree Schools in Southern Sudan and the Swanage Guides. Please give generously bearing in mind the current cost of food and what you would pay for a meal if you had it in a pub. Anyone who would like to help in providing or serving the meals or washing up and has not already offered or been asked to help please get in touch with me. Your help, men or women, is always gratefully received. Elizabeth Crabbe
NEWS FROM THE NATIONAL TRUST PURBECK ESTATE
Recently, I have been contacted by several people wanting to know more about The National Trust’s deer management in Purbeck. Deer, particularly Sika, move throughout Purbeck, so effective management of deer is something that can only be achieved in collaboration with other landowners. I hope that the discussion below explains the thinking behind our deer management.
Like many landowners in Purbeck, we have a programme of culling deer. It is done for three reasons: to protect wildlife habitats from too many deer; to contain damage to crops, forestry and gardens; and to reduce the incidence of road accidents. In carrying out the cull, we ensure the best standards of expertise in our stalkers to ensure public safety and for the welfare of the deer. We also conducted research to ensure that our cull targets best address the reasons for the cull. Many of you will have taken part in our twice yearly deer census, in which we try to count all the deer on Trust land, with upwards of 60 people counting across the estate.
The deer population is increasing dramatically across Purbeck. This is leading to damage to our woods, where new seedlings will not get a chance to establish and on the heaths our mires and reed beds are trampled. There is widely reported damage to crops, forests, and most residents in Studland can tell you of the damage they do to gardens.
In response we have recently increased the cull to 35% of the current adult female population (a cull of stags makes no difference to controlling the population, but may tackle localised problems of too many bachelor groups). On the basis of recent evidence from the Deer Initiative, we may raise it yet further.
But those calling for drastic 90% culls need to bear in mind some of the concerns of the deer stalker. Firstly, a cull has to be set at a level which does not make the animals become nocturnal, when it is both illegal and unsafe to stalk. Secondly, very high culling disrupts social structures and often leads to young deer having to explore for themselves, rather than be shown by elders where to find food. This leads to an increase in traffic accidents, but also risks more forays into gardens and the like. It is going to take several years of successful concerted effort across Purbeck before a decline in numbers will be seen.
Mandy Jarvis, CLV Manager, Purbeck Estate
WHERE AM I IN PURBECK?
Now what’s so interesting about this patch of mud? And what are these people dreaming about?
(Thanks to Ciff Turner for the picture).
Last month, I was beside a bridge over a stream betweenSouth Middlebere and Wytch
Heath. I had taken a photo a week or so earlier but, when I printed it out, I didn’t
think it would reproduce well, so I went back to take another. What a change! To
get to this spot, drive through Corfe, turn right at the Norden roundabout then first
left, which is the road to Arne. About a mile further on, you come to a right angle
bend to the left at Scotland Farm then drive for about half a mile and park where
the common opens out on your right. Again to your right you will see a gateway leading
into a small wood -
Great things are afoot at the Burngate Stone Centre in the coming month and beyond.The official Grand Opening of Burngate on 4 April will be a fun day of interesting talks, walks and demonstrations that’s not to be missed. The development of the ‘Friends of Burngate’ is well under way and there will be forms available on the opening day, so if you’d like to become more involved with the centre you’ll have the opportunity to join the Friends and take part in all the fun on a regular basis!” March brings some great new courses including an evening with experienced local mason Mark Blanchard, a set of four weekly evening lettering sessions with Anna Bowen, and a selection of short introductory carving courses with local carvers Val Quinn and Jonathan Sells. Make the most of these great opportunities to get your hands on some stone and tools! Visit our website for details: www.burngatestonecentre.co.uk David Callaghan
DO YOU READ THE TIMES?
The children of St George’s School would be grateful if you would save the book tokens in The Times and either drop them into the school office or send them by post.
THE CHILDREN’S SOCIETY
Thankyou for bringing your boxes to me again and the sum collected this year is £229.52. I would appreciate somebody volunteering to take over from me... so if you can please let me know. Lena Smith
Cub Scouting is all about fun, adventure and learning new skills. At Langton Matravers Cub Pack we play games, we learn how to light fires (safely) and cook over them (occasionally edible); we hike, we camp and if it’s dark and raining we do fun stuff indoors, including more games.
If your child (8–10 ½yrs) would like to try Cub Scouting we have five free spaces for new recruits. We meet every Tuesday night (6.30 – 8pm) during term time. Please contact Phil Stuckey, Cub Scout Leader:.
Purbeck Strings Festival on the weekend 14 & 15 March is themed on the sounds of romantic strings. Top of the bill this year, in the 3.30pm Sunday afternoon Festival Strings Concert at St Mary’s Church Swanage, is a specially commissioned piece titled Rhapsody, from Scottish composer Sally Beamish. Sally’s Rhapsody will feature two contrasting instruments, solo viola played by Amy Stanford and solo harp played by Ruth Potter, along with the Stanford String Quartet and Festival Strings conducted by Ian Pillow.
The romantic theme will continue with Elgar’s Sospiri for harp and strings and Albinoni’s Adagio for organ and strings. For those who like anniversaries, this year is the 200th anniversary of the German composer Felix Mendelssohn’s birth and the Festival Strings will be celebrating the occasion by performing his Sinfonie No. 10.
The Stanford Quartet’s Festival appearance will be at 8pm on Saturday (14 March) in St Mary’s Church. Their performance will also feature Russian composer Borodin’s musical love letter to his wife in the form of his second quartet. The quartet will, during the concert become a quintet with the addition of Lydia Northcott viola, to perform Mozart’s viola quintet.
This year’s Saturday morning workshop at the Swanage URC Hall from 11-
There are ticket deals available to Friends of Purbeck Strings and a special £20 weekend ticket available to all that entitles entry to both concerts and the workshop. Accompanied children and students are admitted free.
Purbeck Strings is committed to life-
LETTER CARVING IN A PURBECK QUARRY
Lander’s quarry is planning to host a stone letter-
HOLIDAYS AT DURDLE DOOR
The Diocese of Salisbury Mothers’ Union has a modern well equipped, warm caravan
at Durdle Door. Holidays are available from the end of March to the end of October,
for families or folk who would otherwise be unable to afford a break, or who have
never been able to afford a holiday. Each holiday runs for one week from Tuesday
to Tuesday. Please contact Iris Parker for more information and referral forms call
May I thank everyone throughout the Diocese who bought the specially-
Local writer and artist, David Reeves, has just published his latest novel. The action
is triggered by buying, at an online auction, a copy of Landseer’s famous painting
of a Highland stag... hence the jokey title, The Stag@eBay. The hero gives up his
existence as boring bureaucrat in soulless suburbia, to find fulfilment in a thinly
fictionalised Dorset market town (well, it worked for Hardy). A feel-
‘GOODBYE MRS CHIPS’
The next Artsreach performance in Langton Matravers Village Hall will be on Saturday,
21 March at 7:30pm. The Ministry of Entertainment presents ‘Goodbye Mrs Chips’. After
nearly 60 years of sterling service, dinner lady extraordinaire, Mrs Chipping, is
finally hanging up her potato masher, egg mallet and gravy sieve for the last time.
In this sequel to the ever-
On a cold night at the end of January, a group of fun seeking villagers from Worth and Langton and even as far away as Creech, were highly entertained and excellently fed at a Moroccan evening in Worth Village Hall. Organised by Debbie Handy, ably assisted by her husband Peter and another Committee Member Jenny Hynan, we were treated to an excellent meal of Lamb and Vegetable Tagine with cous cous and other tasty trimmings, followed by pears poached in spiced orange juice with caramel sauce, and a cup of delicious Mint Tea.
The scrumptious meal was professionally and lovingly prepared by Karla complemented by wonderful decorations of authentic Berber rugs, Moroccan pink fabrics, lanterns and tables that the best restaurants in Purbeck would have been proud to present. And in place of the Belly Dancer, who unfortunately didn’t show, we were entertained by a Moroccan quiz which as well as being a lot of fun helped us all learn more about this fascinating country which Debbie and Peter have got to know over the years.
The next event on 27 June will have a Caribbean theme. Don’t miss out... get it in your diary now! Jack Ross
WORTH BOOK CLUB
So far we have read and discussed The Septembers of Shiraz by Dalia Sofer, The White Tiger by Aravind Adiga and That old Ace in the Hole by Annie Proulx, travelling in our imaginations from Iran to India and on to the Texas panhandle.
Our next meeting is at 6.30pm on 17 March in Worth village hall and this month’s book is Fingersmith by Sarah Walters. The third Tuesday of the month has become our regular slot.
To add some flavour to our discussions, one of our group has brought relevant goodies to eat: almonds and pistachios for Iran, spicy nibbles for India and nachos and dips for Texas.
We decide at each meeting what the next read will be and the general feeling is that we are willing to be challenged. Camus, Turgenev, Tolstoy and James Joyce have all been mentioned but not pulled out of the hat so far. If you are interested in joining us on our literary travels with accompanying dishes call. Dilys Thomas
WORTH AFTERNOON CLUB
In February, the colour consultant Liz Prest, brightened up our meeting with her colour swatches as she showed us how choosing the right colours can enhance appearance and complement skin tone. The next meeting is on 11 March at 2.30pm when the intrepid Doug Addison returns to talk about sailing around the Baltics. Visitors welcome.
WORTH MATRAVERS PARISH COUNCIL
Representing the villages of Worth Matravers & Harmans Cross
Last month’s meeting due to have taken place on the 3 February at Harmans Cross, had to be cancelled at the last moment due to a heavy fall of snow making the roads out of Worth Matravers very dangerous. The meeting took place the following evening at Worth.
During the evening of the third, a vehicle must have slid off the road, badly damaging the fencing on the left hand side of the Worth Matravers car park entrance. At the time of writing, no one has come forward to admit responsibility for the damage!
The meeting was informed that 28 days notice has been given to Purbeck District Council for the withdrawal of the ‘permissive path’ permission across Pat’s Plot, below Begbie Field. PDC are in talks with the present owner.
As all the suggested sites for plastic recycling banks, in both Worth and Harmans Cross, have proved unsuitable for one reason or another, it was agreed that the Parish Council encourage PDC to introduce a doorstep collection of recyclable plastics.
I have had a meeting with the Project Engineer, SSE Power Distribution, and as nearly
all the legal permissions have now been settled, they are all set to start work on
the various elements of the Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty Undergrounding Scheme
at Worth. It is anticipated that they could be on site by the end of February to
initially do the Direction Drill crossings, of which there are five, followed closely
by the main installation of the new cables by Mole Plough Technique. At present,
the target date to do the follow up dismantlement and completion of the scheme is
mid May 2009. The cables are mostly to the west of the village, from the car park,
along the back of the Church, past Weston Farm down to Hill Bottom. They will also
be working on the cables opposite the Square and Compass, bringing the transformer
down to ground level, so the poles can be removed. Some of the poles that have BT
lines attached, will have to remain, as BT have said they have no money in their
budget to underground their cables. They seem unwilling to co-
The request for a continuation of the pavement in Haycrafts Lane, is slowly moving
up the list. A pre-
Some good news, the requested 30mph speed restrictions in Haycrafts Lane and Tabbitts Hill Lane have passed through all the legal requirements, and DCC are now able to go forward to make arrangements to have the necessary signs erected and to seal the Traffic Order, which should be by the end of April.
Two people have registered their interest in an allotment. If insufficient names are forthcoming, then a private scheme could be floated, so that residents with large gardens, that they can no longer manage, could be matched up with persons requiring space for growing fresh vegetables, payment being a share of the produce grown. Please contact the Clerk, if you are interested.
The dry stone boundary wall at West Burton Field is being rebuilt. A few days before work started, part of the wall collapsed onto the neighbouring driveway. Grants towards the cost have been promised from Dorset AONB and the Purbeck Keystone Project.
Future school provision was discussed and it was agreed that each Councillor would write to DCC in support of keeping St. George’s School and a three tier system. These would be in addition to one on behalf of the parish council.
The Purbeck Community Partnership have requested information on problems related to deer, and accidents attributed to or possibly attributable to deer, for presentation at their next meeting. If you have experienced any problems, please notify the Clerk, by 12 March.
Planning applications this month
The Parish Council had no objections to the following:-
• Rose Cottage, WM. Listed Building Consent. Remove internal partition and lime wash internal wall.
• Woody Hyde Farmhouse, Valley Rd., Corfe Castle. The erection of a carport to house two cars and a store, retaining and extending the existing wall.
• TPOs at Barrow Lee, Tabbitts Hill Lane, HX & Wild Hill, WM.
The next meeting will be held at 7.30pm on Tuesday 3 March in WM Village Hall. Joyce Meates, Chairman
At the time of writing, February will be remembered for its cold and snow. We have not had great falls and the Hill has been kept open and gritted, but once into West and South Street it got very slippy. Should we perhaps ask for a bin for salt and grit so we could do our own gritting? At times it was very difficult to pull in and out of the side of the road because of ice.
A concert had been arranged for the afternoon of 7 February, but it was postponed until 18 April. The performers were coming from quite a long way away and were uncertain whether they could get here. However, a number of concert goers turned up and sadly had to turn round and go home.
However, there was a bright side to the snow. A very fine snowman appeared in the churchyard, complete with face and red nose, or rather a carroty nose. Am I allowed to assume it was a man, could it not have been a woman? I am sure it was a man. The nose was very unladylike and who would go out and make a snowperson? Unfortunately when the thaw came, HE disappeared very quickly.
The weather was entirely suitable for the snowdrops under the chestnut trees. They are clumping up nicely so now we won’t have to go to the old churchyard to get our fill of snowdrops.
We have no news of a new landlord at the Scott Arms. The official comment is No Comment. According to the Daily Echo, there was a very brief visit to Encombe by Sir Richard Branson to view the property. Maybe, we should not hold our breath. George Pitman
PALE & INTERESTING STRANGER
An unusual visitor arrived in South Street, Kingston recently... some residents were looking out of their window when they spotted a ‘stranger’ on the lawn. This stranger was small and white with a black tip to its tail, and was very lively. On consulting reference books, it was confirmed as an ermine. In Scotland and the North of England the stoat, on moulting out its summer coat in the Autumn, grows a pure white coat with just a black tip to its tail. The conjecture is that this would help the animal stalk its prey in frosty and snowy conditions. This white winter coat is where the stoat gets its name of ermine.
It is very unusual for a south country stoat to change colour in this way as the weather is not usually cold enough to stimulate the change. Maybe, the extra cold snap we had in November 2008 is the reason that this stoat, after moulting out its summer coat, changed to ‘ermine’. Maybe Mother Nature had a way of warning of this long cold winter that we have been having this season. Greta Hardy
NEW VILLAGE HALL FACILITIES
Following the consultation carried out by Dorset Community Action (DCA) in October and November with young people and adults in the community, newsletters have been drafted detailing what facilities residents would like to have at the new village hall and, especially, in the adjacent field. We hope to circulate the final versions to homes in Harmans Cross with March’s Dubber.
Nigel Edmonds, for the Village Hall Management Committee
GRAND BOOK SALE
Harmans Cross Village Hall is the place to be from 10-
We don’t need donations of books for this sale... keep them for the August Bank Holiday Book Stall at Field Day.
Jo & Nigel Edmonds
WEATHER FAILS TO DERAIL RAILWAY EVENING
In the middle of Purbeck’s snowiest week for many years, 4 February thankfully brought a thaw. Despite the evening’s very heavy rain, over 40 people came to the Village Hall for a slide show and talk about Swanage Railway from Peter Foster, our Station Master. In the middle of the line’s winter closedown, the pictures reminded us how fortunate we are to have such a wonderful local rail service to take us through our beautiful countryside to places such as Swanage and Corfe Castle.
The Railway’s General Manager, Mick Dean, gave an update on what is happening on the Railway. He said thatthat the condition of the track beyond Norden means the amount of investment required for the line to Wareham puts back the opening until 2013 or 2014; after the signalling for the route to Weymouth is completed in time for the 2012 Olympics.
The evening was also supported by the Purbeck Railway Circle who brought along a number of model railway displays. Takings from the sale of tickets and the raffle, as well as profits from the Residents’ Club bar, raised approximately £135 for the new village hall after a cheque for £75 for the Swanage Railway Trust was presented to Mick Dean.
HARMANS CROSS RESIDENTS CLUB
If you’re quick, you might just get to our first anniversary Club Night on 27 February. As a member, you can have a free glass of mulled wine or a soft drink and there will also be crisps and other nibbles.
If you’re not a member yet, but know someone who is, get them to bring you along as a guest and think about joining on the night. If you miss this date, try to make one of the others in early spring (see below).
We have just paid a further £100 from our profits to the new village hall fund, taking
our contribution to £500 since August 2008, so it’s clear that joining and attending
the Club is another excellent way to support funding for the new hall, as well as
enjoying yourself with like-
Club Nights at the Village Hall (all are Fridays) are 7.30pm to 10.30pm: 27 February; 13, 20 & 27 March & 10 (Good Friday), 17 & 24 April. Nigel Edmonds
MODEL RAILWAY GROUP
The February group meeting was nearly cancelled because of the snow. In the end, about 18 people came but by 9pm the puddles outside started to freeze so the meeting finished early.
During the evening, we exhibited three N gauge 1/148 scale layouts and two 00 gauge 1/76 scale layouts. One trade stand sold 1/76 scale vehicles while the other sold the same scale trains.
We also exhibited some small layouts at the Swanage Railway Evening at the beginning of February. Peter Foster gave a slide show of the Swanage Railway and we discovered that the first passenger train (The Purbeck Pioneer ) will be coming to Swanage from Victoria on 1 April. See What’s On for times of future meetings. Robin Brasher
SURFING NEWS FROM HARMANS CROSS
The computer club is up and running and has received a positive response from our first two sessions. Interest has centred round gaining access to the internet and the basic use of a computer. We are not following any form of rigid schedule, so if you are thinking about coming along, it is not too late to do so and we would be pleased to see you.
Next planned dates are12.30-
Our internet connection in the village hall has WIFI, so if you have a holiday home, and would like to check your emails with your own laptop, why not drop by at any of the regular coffee mornings, to log on and enjoy a cup of coffee and homemade cake at the same time. Any questions, call Shaun Williams or Alan Stephenson.
HARMANS CROSS VILLAGE HALL 50/50 AUCTION
Local Residents in Purbeck are being offered the opportunity to sell surplus items on 7 March when the Village Hall will be hosting a 50/50 Auction.
Bring along the jewellery you no longer wear, collectables you no longer collect, or that bike that you no longer ride and turn them into cash. It will only cost two pounds to enter a lot (max 10 lots per household), or three pounds if you wish to place a reserve on it and whatever the hammer price you get fifty percent; the other fifty percent, plus the entry fee, goes towards the New Hall Fund. Unsold items will be returned to owner or donated to charity.
Items should be deposited for cataloguing by 2pm on 7 March, for viewing from 6pm and sale starting at 7pm, when bargain hunters can bid for the items that they wish to buy. Some of the early, interesting items for auction include a large French Table and chairs as well as interesting jewellery and furniture. Contact Robert Steel
TRADITIONAL WINTER WARMER
Thanks to superb efforts by Peggie Lees and a dedicated team from the village, over 50 local residents and guests enjoyed a delicious three course meal on 11 February.
Whilst a little later than the normal pre Christmas affairs, organised by Jenny Porter, all involved agreed: “It was great to be back!”
Stilton & Broccoli soup was followed by roast lamb, roast potatoes, carrots, peas and parsnips, plus a choice of super deserts – pavlova, trifle, fruit crumble or Bakewell Tart. All this was rounded off with mint chocolates and coffee plus a free glass of wine from the open bar ably run by Nigel, Jo and Richard.
Chairman of the Village Hall Management Committee, Richard Bullock expressed everyone’s appreciation by thanking Jenny Porter for her past contribution and for the great effort of the day, which involved Jenny, Don, Midge, Peggie, Jill, Marie, Judy, Ken and Una.
Our thanks must also go to the many people who ensured the success of the event by their considerable efforts. Joan and Mike Sumner, who did all the shopping and delivering of food, deserve a special mention as do Moonfleet Convenience Store for their willingness to hold the booking list. In addition there are all those who helped with publicity, cooking, table laying and flower arranging.
Keith Fisher’s ‘active’ raffle with over a dozen prizes resulted in £79 being contributed to the New Village Hall Fund. Following the success of the present event, it’s hoped to hold further Winter Warmers next Winter season.
THE VILLAGE CLUB
Mary Fisher of the Village Club receives a presentation after 5 years of chairmanship !
A reminder to our members of the 26 February meeting in the Village Hall, which will be a Pewter Workshop with Pauline McKay. Members welcome.
Our 26 March meeting is on a “Talk with Slides” by Richard Collier on ‘Yunnan Province in China ~ Land of Eternal Springs’. This will be an interesting talk and all are welcome. Visitors £2; Members free; Tea & Coffee as usual.
Looking ahead to 4 April, which seems like a long way off but time goes so quickly nowadays! ~ A ‘Mamma Mia’ dinner is planned in the Village Hall. This will take the form of a Greek Style meal with wine and soft drinks available to purchase and there will also be a raffle.
Greek sunshine cannot be guaranteed unfortunately but a warm and friendly evening is assured. The cost will be £8.50 per person. Watch notice boards and the monthly newsletter for more information.
An evening promotional tour and demonstration of a ‘Relaxing Chair’ at the Springfield Hotel is planned for March. Possible date, to be confirmed, is the 17th ~ more information in the next newsletter. Jane Roger
The Village Hall Club and Committee extend their deepest sympathies to Reg Carden and Family, following the death of Doreen on 24 January.
Doreen was a much loved member of the community having spent many years in the 80s and 90s contributing to village hall affairs. She was a founding member of the Village Club and supported many events including the Field Day, Coffee Mornings, Winter Warmers and Club outings.
Her funeral, in Poole on 4 February, followed by a reception in Wimborne, was attended by many of our community as well as family and friends and a large contingent of the wonderful care personnel from Streets Meadow, where Doreen spent her last years. Doreen will be sorely missed and Reg has asked us to thank everyone for their kind wishes, cards and offers of support. Alan Stephenson
LANGTON VILLAGE FAIR... CAN YOU HELP?
We would be grateful for as many volunteers as possible to help with refreshments, car parking, gate, sideshows, etc. at this year’s Fair on 13 June in St George’s School Field.
If you are interested in helping please ring Maureen Sizer or Val Burden. Your help would be most welcome and much appreciated. Any donations of cakes would also be welcomed.
Any unwanted china suitable for the Crockery Smash please ring Jerry Burden. Any enquiries regarding a Craft Stall to Di Quinn please ring Valerie Collins
SINGING AND RINGING
‘Singing and Ringing’ with Canzonetta, the popular singing group under the direction of Jacqui Marsh, and the young Lady St Mary Handbell Ringers from Wareham led by Jenny Elmes, will perform together in St George’s Langton on 7 March at 7.30 pm.
Tickets priced £6, if bought in advance (£7 on the door) can be obtained from Langton Village Stores or by telephoning Jenny (553651). The ticket includes a glass of wine and canapes in the interval. It is a fundraising event in aid of The Dorset ME Support Group.
The Dorset ME Support Group relies on voluntary contributions and provides a framework of self help groups across Dorset (including a Purbeck Link Group).
It has just celebrated 10 years of The Wareham Clinic, which it was instrumental in setting up, and which is now fully integrated into the NHS. This was the first specialist ME/CFS clinic of its kind in the country, and other counties are now following its example.
Jenny Elmes, Acting Link Group Leader, DMESG
LANGTON MATRAVERS PARISH COUNCIL
The following resolution was made by Langton Matravers Parish Council at it’s meeting:
‘The Parish Council is of the opinion that the existing three tier system gives children access to specialist teachers and resources from an earlier age than in a two tier system, at a time when they are ready to be stretched.
Middle schools are able to nurture pupils who are more able in subjects other than
literacy, numeracy and science and so help to build their confidence and self-
Children from disadvantaged backgrounds do significantly better in the three tier system; the middle schools have an excellent reputation for caring for and bringing on children with special educational needs and other vulnerable groups.
An exceptional system of pastoral care is the key strength of a three tier system as stated in the Ofsted reports. Children are given support and encouragement needed in a safe and secure environment and therefore the Council wishes St George’s CE VA FirstSchool to remain within a three tier system.’ John Bellucci, Clerk to the Council
There will be a meeting on Wednesday, 25 March at 10.30am in the Village Hall. This will be for both existing Custodians and anyone who is interested in helping to keep our Museum open. We have several vacancies due to age and moving out of the area. Please do consider if you could spare two hours a week from 1 April to end of September, or would be happy to act as a Reserve Custodian. Contact either Reg Saville or Rosemary Stevens.
LANGTON LOCAL HISTORY AND PRESERVATION SOCIETY
Our next meeting will be on Thursday, 19 March at 7.30pm in the Village Hall. Reg
Saville will give an illustrated talk on ‘Langton in the Dialect’. This will be a
humorous and non-
‘THE SPRING CALL’ BY THOMAS HARDY
Down Wessex way, when spring’s a-
The blackbird’s “pret-
In Wessex accents marked as mine
Is heard afar and near.
He flutes it strong, as if in song
No R’s of feebler tone
Than his appear in “pretty dear,”
Have blackbirds ever known.
Yet they pipe “prattie deerh!” I glean,
Beneath a Scottish sky,
And “pehty de-
Of Middlesex or nigh.
While some folk say-
Who know the Irish isle,
‘Tis “purrity dare!” in treeland there
When songsters would beguile.
Well: I’ll say what the listening birds
Say, hearing “pret-
However strangers sound such words,
That’s how we sound them here.
Yes, in this clime at pairing time,
As soon as eyes can see her
At dawn of day, the proper way
To call is “pret-
NEWS FROM NOWHERE
When the financial waters recede in an economic down turn all sorts of wrecks are
exposed. One such Bernard Madoff is accused of misappropriating many tens of billions
of dollars while the latest Sir Alan Stanford is currently in the news because he
is allegedly involved in a fraud of some 8 billion dollars -
However what intrigues me about both men is that they are still enjoying their freedom and neither is behind bars. Stanford was the subject of a world wide search publicised by every national newspaper. If I knew they were looking for him, he must have known also, yet he did not turn himself in and was caught on a car journey with his girl friend. If he had been accused of a more modest misdemeanour involving considerably fewer noughts lets say just one widow’s life savings rather than thousands, he would not be enjoying outings in the car because he would be locked up pending a court hearing.
One gets the feeling that the people at the top of the tree are frightened of the really big crooks. They don’t want to risk upsetting them and somehow feel it is rather bad form to restrict the freedom of anyone whose life style is so similar to their own. Of course, there are the occasional exceptions. Ernest Saunders another financier somehow played his cards so badly that he ended up in clink, but he was quickly released mid sentence because the authorities were told the poor man had Alzheimers. The complaint did not prevent him from subsequently joining the board of several companies, giving rise to the old joke that he obviously must have forgotten he had Alzheimers.
I wonder how many criminals of a lower social standing have been let off half their prison sentence because they said they were not feeling very well at the time. Another exception was Conrad Black who made the mistake of allowing his infinite contempt for his business associates to appear so clearly and woundingly that they got their revenge by shopping him to the authorities. One has of course to remember that they not only shopped him but shipped him as well for they managed to insist that the case was heard in America.
I wonder if he would have received a similar verdict at the hands of the English judiciary many of whom probably had sat next to him at dinner not long before. My tip to an aspiring burglar is therefore to get a good PR agent who can advise on the right tailor and associated life style to go with it which includes being a member all the right London clubs. Then never make the mistake of stealing only a small amount, always ensure that whatever you take is a lot, by which I mean A LOT. If you can do this you are pretty safe and can look forward to a ripe old age on the Costa Brava without ever seeing the inside of a prison van.
Despite the wrecks the recession has some silver linings. The hotels and B&B’s in Swanage may find they do much better this summer now there is no longer easy credit and no £20 flights to be picked up on the internet so people can abuse their livers on sunnier beaches.
Economics in general remains a mystery to me for despite being all about finance it seems to owe so much to fantasy. Take two snapshots: one last year and one today, one full of optimism and the other all gloom and doom. Yet, little of substance changed in the interim. No asteroid wiped out London, and there has been no plague of monster rabbits. Admittedly, the country is massively in debt but it was last year. The only difference is that then nobody knew or, if they knew, they didn’t care. Debt is the fertiliser of industry without it we would be back to cave society. Look at the row brewing up because the banks are now refusing to lend. They got it in the neck because they lent too much, now they are getting it in the neck because they are lending too little.
The Government assure us they know what to do, for they have all the best advisers and the economy is a game of skill like Snap, but I cant help feeling it is more a game of dreams and shadows like Poker, where you can lose despite a series of excellent hands and win a fortune even when the cards are against you... I think we should all cheer up. Tony Viney
Have Your Say
Jack Foley and the family would like to express huge gratitude to all the friends
and neighbours for the numerous expressions of love and friendship on the occasion
of his recent 100th birthday. This is a wonderful community to be a part of! To those
who were unable to visit because of ill-
I have a FREE Epson R300 Photo Printer. Snag? It suddenly stopped working. I put in a new compatible ink cartridge and the machine signalled that it could not recognise any of the six cartridges in the machine, even though I had been using them minutes before. So if you have access to Epson manufactured inks for this machine (they are the same as for R200/220/320/340 or RX500/600/620/640) it would be worth trying. Epson said that they thought it would do the trick but I wasn’t prepared to take the gamble of buying six new cartridges. Maybe you are good with electronics and you might be able to get round the glitch. Prior to the problem the machine was working perfectly. If you would like it and you can collect, ring me. CHRIS MEADOWS
I thought this ditty might provide a bit of allotment humour in your next edition. BRIAN OBEY nom de plume “Spoons”.
A Growing Conversation from two Couch Potatoes
Hey Dug! Has Spud been up to his plot with everybody else?
Well old fruit, allotment to go, a few did turnip Saturday.
Actually climbers and Poles strung along and Runners
and even French, bean seen there on Sunday.
Peat said he can’t be there two marrow,
Cos he had a leek in his watering can.
Butt then I understand that he is off to barrow,
to the wedding of Basil to Rosemary...
Well suited. I should think, its bean a growing relationship.
You know they first met in a nursery.
They potted together in a old shed.
Should know each other rather well, wouldn’t you say !
Well she’s now the apple of his heart.
Oh! they should make a good pear then.
It’s a civil affair and a swede is binding the two together,
with Roast Turkey and vegetables afterwards.
They were hoping for a local Parsnip, but couldn’t dig one up.
Shame! anyway I’m told he bought her a gorgeous ring.
Yes eighteen carrots ! I believe. Must have cost a mint!
They say he has a fantastic celery.
Do you know what field that’s in?
Drilling I believe... Which farm?
Knot sure! but the one with the Donkey.
Nodding, I presume? Don’t know havent seen it.
After getting spliced, they leaf at sunset and managed
to get a nice bed in London and at the Savoy no less.
Then they take a privet taxi to Brussels, not sure of the root, but cost the earth. And under ground part of the way
However that’s the Cabb-
When they return, they have taken digs at the bottom
of Langton, by the fork.
What the green house, with the brown door?
Well I think it is more radish.
It’s pretty small and doesn’t have mushroom
for rosemary’s sowing.
Actually I think they beet the owner down on price.
but they had to plough all they savings in, to furnish it.
Well Walter! Lettuce drink to their happiness!
Sure! but I must hop it soon.Why ?
I am off to Beer. Hoe Hoe...Spoons
All Letters can be submitted by post to Terry Whicker (contact details on page 3), by hand to Langton Church or Post Office or emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org
I wonder if any readers find that these days their arms aren’t quite as long as they
used to be -
This experiment does, of course, involve extra work, extra printing costs, so I’d be interested to hear from readers with sight problems. If you do get hold of a copy of the A3 version, how do you find it? And if the scheme were to go ahead, would you, for example, feel it worthwhile to subscribe a few pence a month for this service? Drop me a line, c/o one of the churches, phone me, Roger Free.
THE PURBECK PRODUCE RECIPE
TAMSIN’S VENISON SAUSAGE CASSEROLE
500g rosemary & garlic venison sausages
200g smoked bacon, chopped
200g chopped mushrooms
1 large onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, chopped
375 ml of red wine (or same quantity wine /stock)
1 teaspoon lightly bruised juniper berries
1 teaspoon of chopped fresh thyme
1 tablespoon plain flour
2 tablespoons of redcurrant jelly
Use a heavy pan or casserole to brown the sausages in olive oil for 10 minutes then remove sausages. Add onion, garlic and bacon to pan and cook for around 10 minutes.
Return sausages to pan. Stir in the flour until the juices are absorbed. Add red
wine and herbs. Bring contents to a simmer, put the lid on and simmer gently on the
lowest setting for 30 minutes. Add mushrooms and cook with lid removed for 20 -
If you have a Purbeck Produce recipe that you’d like to share, please send it to email@example.com
Post your own events or see what else is happening
by going to WHAT’S ON ONLINE at www.thedubber.co.uk
Langton Toddler Group Thurs 1.30-
Folk Dancing Tues 7.30-
HX Art Group Tues 2pm HXVH
LANGTON SCOUTS & GUIDES (Term time only)
M. Haysom Mon 7-
Phil Stuckey Tues 6.30-
Barbara Bray Tues 5-
Val Burden Weds 4.40-
Val Burden Weds 6.45-
(Sue Bonfield) Thurs 6-
1 Traidcraft stall St George’s Ch
3 7.30pm Worth PC meeting HCVH
4 12.30pm Lent Lunch LMVH
6 10am Women’s World of Prayer St Nicholas, Worth
6 7.30pm Model Railway Group HCVH
7 7pm HC 50/50 Auction HCVH
7 7pm ‘Singing & Ringing’
with Canzonetta St George’s Ch
7 9.30 -
11 12.30pm Lent Lunch LMVH
11 2.30pm Worth Afternoon Club WMVH
12 7pm Langton PC Meeting LMVH
Carving (4 sessions) Burngate SC
13 7.30pm HC Residents’ Club HCVH
14 12 noon Light Lunch LMVH
14 & 15 Purbeck Strings Festival Swanage
17 6.30pm Worth Book Club WMVH
18 12.30pm Lent Lunch LMVH
18 7.00pm Railway Modelling
19 7.30pm Langton History &
Preservation Society LMVH
20 7.30pm HC Residents’ Club HCVH
21 7.30pm ‘Goodbye Mrs Chips’ LMVH
25 12.30pm Lent Lunch LMVH
25 10.30am Museum Custodians meeting LMVH
26 HC Village Club HCVH
27 7.30pm HC Residents’ Club HCVH
28 12 noon Light Lunch LMVH
1 12.30pm Lent Lunch LMVH
4 Burngate Fun day Burngate SC