News & Events for May 2019


Christian Aid Week this year is on 12th-18th May.  As there is no house to house collection now in our local villages donation envelopes will be available at church.  

These can be returned either to church or to Coffee Stop where envelopes will also be available.

Concert by The Fenland Consort in Barnack Church

Saturday evening, 25 May 2019 at 7.30 pm

The Fenland Consort consists of 7 musicians based in the South of Lincolnshire.

 So far they have played in more then 20 different places in Lincolnshire. The players are active in the surrounding orchestra such as Boston Symphony Orchestra, Stamford Chamber Orchestra and City of  Peterborough Symphony Orchestra.

Come for an evening of a variety of music: well-loved classical and instrumental jazzy and folk song music. On the programme movement from  Vivaldi’s concerto for violin and cello, Gershwin’s “Walking the Dog” “Folk Song Suite” by John Hollins, Shostakovitch Valse from “Jazz Suite no. 2”, and much more.  A feast to listen to!

The Fenland Consort plays a variety of instruments in different ensemble combinations: flutes, violins, viola, cello, double bass, piano / harpsichord.

Tickets £7.50 (including refreshments); under 18s free of charge. Tickets in advance or at the door: Call 01780-740267 or 01780-749420

All profits will go to church funds for acquiring a heating system in the church!

Table Top Sale thanks

I would like to thank all who helped to make the Table Top Sale a success, especially those who set up and cleared the tables, those who bought tables, those who bought the merchandise on offer, and those who worked hard in a very busy Coffee Stop. 

The Sale made just under £400 for the Bamack Church Heating Fund.  I am grateful to you all. Liz Young


I read with great interest the articles in the March and April news magazines by Peter Sindall, Bernard Kane and Margaret Venables concerning the management of the Hills and Holes by Natural England. I have to agree with the content of all 3.

Prior to the 2017/18 Winter, sheep grazed on the site for 3-4 months, usually from mid-September until year-end, but were always off the land by the start of the New Year. Then for that 2017/18 Winter they stayed for 6 months. Worse still, for the 2018/19 Winter they arrived during the 3rd week of August (according to Natural England this was the start of Autumn!!) and left exactly 7 months later, towards the end of March. When they did such a good job of grazing for 3-4 months in previous years, why have we had to tolerate their presence for such a long period during the last 2 Winters? 

To make matters worse, this last Winter we have had the added presence of 4 large ponies. There are the resultant piles of dung everywhere and many of the main footpaths and areas adjacent to the internal compartment gates have been trampled to oblivion and become slippery mud baths. The near surface has been compacted to such an extent by these large ponies that the natural draining properties of the subsurface limestone cannot now drain the surface rain water as it cannot get through the heavily compacted surface mud. This would have been even more apparent if this last Winter had seen the volume of snow we had during February 2018. The introduction of these ponies by Natural England is, I would suggest, a disgrace.

Natural England should also be held to account for bringing a large digger onto the site in February this year, to excavate a trench from near the small gate going into the car park, across to the fence separating the northwest and southwest compartments. Whilst a new water trough may be needed, the feeder pipe was of very small diameter, yet the size of the trench was wide enough for a major pipeline! To-date, Natural England has made little effort to repair the unacceptable mess their digger has left behind. Do they really expect the plants and vegetation to be able to grow through this and cover their tracks? 

It could certainly be argued that Natural England are guilty of blatant vandalism in the way they have managed the Hills and Holes during the last year. To add to that, they have now issued a Public Consultation Document to try and restrict our access and flex their muscles even further. I would suggest that they issued this document in a deliberately underhand and devious way, by assuming that any interested parties regularly scrutinise their website to find such publications, but also, by not posting it on any of the notice boards going into the Hills and Holes thereby ensuring that walkers are not easily aware of it. 

Natural England are doing little to gain the co-operation of local site users by their actions. The site warden, Steve Bighi is getting a considerable amount of abuse for the decisions of his employer but In my experience Steve has always been very pleasant and is only doing his job. It is the people above him, who’ve probably never set foot on the Hills and Holes, who should be blamed for this disgraceful management and it is they who should be on the receiving end of our wrath. 

Finally, GET THOSE PONIES OFF!   Mike Johnson

Hills and Holes

There have recently been a number of articles in the village magazine concerning Natural England’s policy on access by the public to the area known as the Hills and Holes. Much of the concern raised by individualswas the lack of information regarding what was allowed and what was not.Also,some confusion arose regarding which areas were open the public and those that were not. As a result of villagers’concern I met with Chris Evans of Natural England to clarify the situation. As a result of that meeting Chris confirmed that as a general rule only one of the designated areas was closed to the public and that those not populated by sheep or horses wouldbe open to all. Unfortunately for management of the site purposes it was necessary occasionally to split the area designated for sheep from that for horses. I was assured that this would only happen on a limited number of occasions. You will probably have noticed that Natural England has now posted maps on the gates to indicate where the sheep and horses are grazing. I am assured these will be changed as the sheep and horses move to different areas. 

Another concern of English Nature was the fact that dogs could get under the gates to different areas. Chris Evans agreed that wire (or similar) at the bottom of the gates would solve this problem and he would investigate how this may be achieved. 

Finally, concerns have been raised about whether horses should be allowed in the area at all. These concerns, together with a number of questions, have been raised with Natural England and no doubt we will learn of their decision in due course.  Bernard Kane

The Buttercross Club

On Wednesday 20th March. A small group of our members enjoyed a walk amongst the daffodils in the south gardens of Burghley House. This was followed by coffee in the Orangery.

On Wednesday 3rd April Sheila welcomed members and guests to an open meeting, where our speaker was Martin Chillcott. Martin has been a resident of Castor for 25 years and takes his role as Chair of Protect Rural Peterborough with great dedication enthusiasm.

Martin gave an illustrated account of the extensive work involved in opposing large scale development close to Castor and Ailsworth villages and the surrounding countryside. Peterborough City Council’s Draft Local Plan proposed to build 2500 new houses within the Parishes of Castor & Ailsworth.

It was interesting to learn that the skylark is the emblem of Protect Rural Peterborough. This little bird is common in the area, and sings for joy and even when it is being pursued by predatory hawks, which people believe confuses the predator and spares the skylark.

If anyone would like to learn more or get involved with the PRP then visit their website

Diary dates: Wednesday May 1st our speaker will be Jill Collinge Affairs of The Heart. This is an open meeting; guests are most welcome for just £2 which includes tea/coffee and biscuits.

Bainton and Ashton Allotments

The world’s favourite season is the spring, all things seem possible in May (Edwin Teale 1899-1980)

A funny thing happened on the way to the allotments ......... actually, to be precise it wasn’t actually on the way but outside on the pavement but where’s the humour in that? 

Having established the existence of author’s license we shall continue with the story. ...Last week our esteemed Chair of the allotment’s committee was trying to locate a suspected water leak. He was kindly being helped by a fellow allotmenteer and after much searching on the allotments with no success; they decided to check the water meter. This is set into the pavement on the roadside and when the cover was lifted the meter was apparently covered in debris which needed to be cleared before it could be checked. 

Chris lay down on the pavement to do the deed and his helper was leaning over him checking progress and this continued for a few minutes. All of a sudden they became aware of emergency sirens approaching and looking up they saw a police car, blue lights flashing and sirens blaring, approaching from the Stamford direction and coming to an abrupt stop next to them. Then the whole process was repeated from the Helpston direction. A total of four policemen raced over to the two leak hunters who were looking quite surprised at point! The police explained that they had received a 999 call saying a man had collapsed on the pavement and there was a man bending over him - either attacking the man on the ground or trying to resuscitate him! Fortunately the police saw the funny side of it and disappeared back from whence they came. 

So thank you to the Good Samaritan for phoning in the ‘emergency’ - it could have been a real event and also thank you to the policemen for responding so quickly. Oh, and in case you were on the edge of your seats awaiting the outcome - the source of the water leak was discovered. So all’s well that ends well.

Talking of water, it is such a valuable commodity which should be conserved where possible.

The effect of a dry summer can adversely affect food crops and ornamental plants whether grown in your garden or at an allotment. The temptation is to keep watering but there is an additional option which limits water loss from surface evaporation and that is mulching. The mulch can be anything of an organic source such as garden or purchased compost, well-rotted manure, bark chippings or even grass clippings. This will limit surface water loss, help suppress weeds and, as the plants grow, encourage their roots to go deeper in search of moisture rather than relying on surface moisture.

Mulching is also at the heart of the ‘no-dig’ or organic cultivation technique which some of our allotmenteers  use to grow crops.  Research has shown that the effect of mycorrhizal fungi on plant roots is significant through greatly extending the root system and so improving the take up of water and essential nutrients such as phosphorous. Repeated digging breaks these mycorrhizal connections and needs fertiliser applications to provide plant nutrients. Instead, putting a good layer of compost as a mulch onto crop beds (fruit or vegetable) reduces water loss, retains the important mycorrhizal links, stimulates increased worm activity which pulls down the mulch into the soil and leads to a healthy soil which better sustains plant growth. 

If you have a deep seated need to do some digging, then go to the nearest beach and help the children/grandchildren build sandcastles. Add an ice cream or two and they’ll be delighted with their day out.

Village Ladies

Our luncheon venue for this month is  the Wagon & Horses, Langtoft, on 8 May at 12.30 pm.  (Joan 740 396)

Mens Breakfast

‘Twas just a coincidence...”  This is the title of the talk to be given at the next Men’s Breakfast, on Saturday 25th May (at the usual time of 8.30-10.00am, in the Barnack Village Hall).  The speaker will be Merv Franklin.  Please come along to hear a great talk, have a delicious breakfast,and enjoy the company of other guys.

Barnack War Memorial

Research carried out for last November’s WWI commemorative exhibition in Barnack revealed that the names of two men, Harry Pick and John Quin, had been recorded on the war memorial incorrectly as H. Peck and J. Quinn. 

Furthermore, the name of another of our casualties, Charles Dumford, had been omitted altogether. 

The Parish Council and the committee of our local branch of the Royal British Legion, on behalf of us all, are agreed that these men should be correctly honoured. Fortunately, only one plaque has had to be removed to rectify matters. I have taken it to the company in Derbyshire that manufactured the original so that they can produce a replacement that matches the other two plaques. It will be put in place as soon as possible.  Brian Palmer

Barnack WI

This item includes news of both the March and April meetings.  Unfortunately the speaker for the March meeting had to withdraw at the last minute but it allowed time for a brainstorming session to discuss our programme for 2020 where lots of good ideas surfaced and are in the process of being followed up.  

At the April meeting members learned that the Community Coffee morning held on the 18th March had raised £400 which has been sent to Dr Jonathan Jones to aid the marvellous work that he does in Africa and this followed on from our February meeting when he spoke to us on ‘Surgery in Africa’.  

The April speaker, Sue Jakeman, gave us an extremely interesting and entertaining talk entitled ‘Bees and Bee Keeping’.  She spoke from first hand experience and told us of the amazing life that bees lead, more than we already knew from various wildlife programmes on the media.  We hope to have Sue back to talk again.  Our next meeting is on the 14th May when Colin Deeley’s talk will be entitled ‘Secrets of Belton House and Gardens’.


Party in the Paddock planning is well under way! The organising team comprises of representatives from the BCA, St John the Baptist Church, Barnack School and residents from Barnack, Pilsgate and Ufford.

We are on meeting No. 6, meet every 2 weeks at the Millstone Pub to keep the planning momentum going, and we’re still very happy to welcome anyone who may feel they’d like to come along and support us with ideas. Alternatively, if you want to offer a volunteering hand on the day or run-up, then we’d obviously love to hear from you.

We will start pre-selling PIP raffle tickets around the village over the next few months and we would be very grateful for any prize donations for the raffle or any “bottles” for the tombola. Bottles can take the form of anything and everything from a bottle of shampoo to an expensive malt!

We are setting up three Collection Points in the village where you can drop off your donations. At the time of going to press, we can confirm two of these collection points are “The Coffee Stop” – Village Hall – Wednesday 10.30-12.00 as well as the home of Rev Dave and Kim Maylor, The Rectory (Millstone Lane).

In other news:  Our Village Hall new hire charge rates have taken effect from 1st April 2019. This follows our detailed audit,over the last 6 months,of the hall’s running costs as well as thorough research of other local village halls and their respective rates and facilities. 

Our Hall is now hired out on an hourly rate basis, as opposed to a “session” rate. We are hoping this will offer more flexibility to potential hirers and maximise the availability of the Hall. All the regular clubs and groups have been informed and we have taken every step to ensure these invaluable groups are not impacted significantly by the change, if at all. 

For details of our new hourly rate charges for both regular and ad-hoc bookings – please This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

Date Reminders!

• Saturday 4th May:  Barnack Spring Fair  –  10 am-4pm, Barnack Village Hall

• Saturday 13th July:  Party in the Paddock  – The Rectory, Millstone Lane, Barnack

• Saturday 21st September (NOTE THE DATE CHANGE!)  –  Barnack Variety Show -  7pm, Barnack Village Hall

Friends of Barnack Church

Recent 200 Club winners are


£20   No.40   T. Rowlands

£10   No.98   P. Sindall

£5   No.25   J. Woollard


£20   No.136   D. Gilbert

£10   No.80   V. Ward

£5   No.107   A. Viney

Thank you

Thank you to all you villagers who attended the recent Stamford Brass concert.  I hope you all enjoyed it as much as we did.  Wasn’t it amazing?  My 95 year old Dad said he liked the Bohemian Rhapsody best.  And to close the concert with a couple of Beatles tracks just showed their diversity off to a tee, a multitude of genres.  

Thank you also to Rob & Pam McNeish for helping out on the night.

Many blessings and thank you again for supporting us.  St Mary’s Vision Group Bainton.

Dates for your diary:

FAMILY DAY Stall Holders & Volunteers Meeting

Wednesday May 8th  7.30pm  Reading Room

Please come along so we can know the person power we will have on the day and the day before when we set up the stalls etc.

6th July Cottesmore Military Wives Choir

Wittering Church 

7th July  Bainton & Ashton Family Day

Bainton House All very welcome

22nd September Bainton & Ashton Apple & Cider Day

Paddock View, Bainton. Rutland Yukalayee are already booked in as part of the entertainment. There might even be some cider on sale.

Coffee Morning Saturday 18th May 2019 10.30am –12 noon. 

St John the Baptist Church would like to invite you to join us on each third Saturday of the month, 10.30am – 12 noon. You can enjoy tea/coffee and biscuits. We also have home-made cakes, scones, lemon curd etc. on sale to tempt you! We enjoy time for a chat with friends and for making new ones. Do come along and join us!        


The regular Coffee Stop Sing Along will take place on Wednesday 29th May.  The Sing Along session takes place on the last Wednesday of the month, every other month.  (In the month in-between Dave and Henk have kindly offered to come and play background music for us).

Thanks again to Jill Pybus from Chocoholics who visited us recently with more tempting samples.  The Coffee Stop that operated alongside the recent Table Top sale raised £88.00 for the Church’s Heating Project. For those wishing to support Christian Aid Week (12th-18th May), donation envelopes will be available at Coffee Stop on 15th May.

Homemade cakes, scones and tea cakes, ‘real’ coffee (plus ‘Take out’ drinks) at very reasonable prices are always available.  If people would like to see anything else being offered we will always listen to your suggestions.  Coffee Stop is held in Barnack Village Hall every Wednesday from 10.30am to 12.00 noon in the side room   Open to everyone - we look forward to welcoming you.   Lifts are available if required.  We have a wonderful team of helpers but there’s always room for one more!  If you would be willing to assist in any way, or bake an occasional cake, please speak to Carol (740438).  Thank you to everyone who contributes towards making Coffee Stop happen.

Little Lambs

Little Lambs is a lovely friendly toddler group for parents, grandparents and carers with babies and toddlers up to 4 years old.  We meet in Barnack Village Hall on Tuesdays during Barnack School term time from 10am to 12 noon, so every Tuesday this month except the 28th May which is half-term holiday week.  The first hour is free play time with lots of toys, a slide and see-saw, home play corner, baby area, craft activity for little hands and sometimes a sensory play activity.    Just before 11am everyone helps clear away the toys and put out tables and chairs for snack time.  Snack time at Little Lambs is very special with cafetiere coffee or tea and  cakes for the grown-ups, which are usually homemade,  and a snack bowl with fruit and a biscuit or little cake for the children.  Afterwards we go into the side room for a very short bible story and lots of action songs, with Rev Dave on guitar to lead the singing. Then for the last 5- 10 minutes there are ride-ons in the main hall for the children to use up their last bit of energy before going home.      Little Lambs is great for the babies and toddlers to experience the fun of being with and playing with other children, and for their parents and carers to meet new people, catch up with friends and to sit down for a nice coffee!    Little Lambs is run by Barnack Church for everyone in Barnack and the surrounding villages.   A very warm welcome awaits.  Please contact Julie Stanton on 07885563128 to find out more about Little Lambs.

Messy Church with Barnack Church

Messy Church this month will be on Sunday 12th May in Barnack Village Hall from 4pm to 5.45pm.    We are looking forward to another busy fun filled time, there will be lots of cool, bible themed activities, crafts and games then a short very family friendly celebration service, with the bible story, songs and a prayer.   Afterwards everyone is invited to stay for a tea-time meal together, with plenty of time to chat and get to know each other.   If you have not been before do come along and give it a try.  Everyone really welcome.  Messy Church is great for families and all who are young at heart.  There’s no charge but we welcome donations to help cover the costs.  On the last Sunday of April we will have had the first Messy Church 4th Sunday gathering - a family walk together in Burghley Park followed by a shared meal and lively worship back in the Village Hall.   Look out for details of what Messy Church will be doing on the 26th May. To find out more please call Rev Dave Maylor 740234 or Julie Stanton 07885563128 or 749123.  

Ufford Open Gardens 2019

The Village Hall Committee are sorry to say that the Open Gardens on 8th June has had to be cancelled.

We will be organising another event later in the year, details to follow.

Tips from bainton & Ashton Allotments

• Sow now – sweetcorn, courgettes, pumpkins and French beans

• Keeping an eye on frost forecasts, plant out tomatoes and basil or keep them indoors for a little longer until all risk has passed

• Watch for rhubarb flowering heads and nip them out

• Earth up potato plants

• Plant out summer bedding

• Regularly hoe off weeds

• Mow lawns weekly

• Lift and divide overcrowded clumps of daffodils and other spring flowering bulbs