Letters to the Editors
Bikey Mikey's epic charity cycle ride
May we draw your readers' attention to our son Michael's forthcoming sponsored solo cycle ride from Istanbul to Cambridge in aid of Médecins Sans Frontieres.
A former student of Hills Road 6th Form College, Michael is taking a gap year before starting his degree in cellular and molecular medicine at Bristol University. Michael is a mad keen cyclist; if you were quick enough, some of you may have seen a Billy the Whizz type blur of him hurtling through the village on his racing bike travelling to and from college and work.
Michael is currently biking round New Zealand, having circumnavigated the south island and now making his way up the north. He has funded the entire trip himself, having spent the previous six months working as an operating theatre assistant at Addenbrookes Hospital. Singapore airlines have kindly agreed to fly his bike to Turkey for free.
Of course we are very proud that he is such a brave and independent traveller, but also somewhat apprehensive and are trying hard to turn a deaf ear to hair-raising gap year stories.
If anyone would like to sponsor him, this can be done via his just giving webpage or organised through ourselves.
With our best wishes to everyone in the village
The Autumn Show
I have been asked by the Autumn Show committee, to encourage all residents of Swaffham Prior and readers of the Crier, to seed, grow, brew, bake, design and preserve for the show. It will be held on SATURDAY 12th SEPTEMBER at the Village Hall.
The classes include just about all the vegetables- potatoes, beans, carrots, courgettes, onions, pumpkins, cucumbers, tomatoes and beetroot. Fruits- pears, apples, plums and raspberries; Flowers- dahlias, chrysanths, roses perennials and michaelmas daisies; Flower arrangements; Jams and preserves; Cakes and Bread; Wines and a children's section, including one needing a very long tapemeasure- the Tallest Sunflower.
Something there for just about every body, specially now you can grow so many things in pots, buckets, (ask Andy Pumfrey) tubs and bags. Give it a go. there are those that win, year after year-they need challenging! All entries are auctioned at the end of the show and the money given to a charity. More details about the show and the classes, will be in the Crier at a later date.
We would like to thank everyone who helped to make our Emilia appeal donor clinic in Swaffham Prior such a success. We were overwhelmed by the number of people who turned up at the village hall on March 31, wanting to help our 10-yearold daughter.
Hundreds patiently queued to register as bone marrow donors with the Anthony Nolan Trust, spilling out of the hall, down the path and onto the pavement. It was a fantastic turnout and we are extremely grateful. Although Emilia's blood disorder prevented her from being there on the night, she was thrilled to learn that so many had been thinking of her.
We would also like to thank all those who helped publicise and run the clinic - the nurses and doctor who volunteered to take blood samples, family and friends who helped distribute leaflets, welcome donors and organise refreshments and the Trust's staff who were able to answer so many of the public's questions. We couldn't have done it without them.
We have also been touched by local fundraising initiatives which help to support clinics like ours, including FoSPS' sunny café at Swaffham Prior Primary School, an awareness campaign and cake stalls at Bottisham Village College, a sponsored golf day at the Gog Magogs and generous company and personal donations. All funds have been forwarded to Anthony Nolan to enable its vital work to continue. Our Swaffham Prior clinic may be over but the campaign goes on: At Domino in Bar Hill a donor recruitment day in aid of the Emilia appeal attracted more than 100 newcomers onto the register -and two of those are going to host their own clinics! It is so important that more people continue to register -the more donors the greater the chance of finding a match for Emilia and others like her. To register with the Anthony Nolan Trust: 020 7284 1234 www.anthonynolan.org.uk For the National Blood Service's bone marrow registry: 0845 7 711 711 www.blood.co.uk. Together we can make a difference. Thank you
A very belated thank-you to Lynn Rand, for her letter acknowledging the work over the years of the village W.I. who've planted hundreds and hundreds of daffodils and usually "dead headed" them.( I have it on good authority that John Wilkins uses a scythe for this- he is incidentally one of our W.I. support group!)
We did discuss at a committee meeting, whether we should ask the people Lynn mentioned, who liked to "live head" the daffodils, ruining many peoples pleasure, to do the "dead heading" too, but decided against it.
Many tributes have been made to Pat Bourne and I hope I may add mine here. Pat reflects the love and sheer goodness of her parents, Len and Addie Gibson whom I knew well in Blackheath, South-east London, 60 years ago. Pat's Father Len was the District Surveyor for Lewisham and as such was in charge of Heavy Rescue services after bombings in WW2. It was he who was responsible for the digging of my parents and myself out from our 4-storey home which was demolished by a V1 Doodle Bug landing in our back garden. Such was the start of a long friendship between us , and ,from Len a considerable contribution to the building up of my architectural practice. It's a small world... ... and a good one too , and we were delighted when we came to Burwell ten years ago to find Pat still here carrying out her loving work for those in need.
Once again the Rogation Service and lunch at Adventurers Farm was enthusiastically supported and with the bonus of several new faces to the village which was lovely. Once couple, who are planning their wedding in St. Mary's for this September, travelled up from London and joined villagers both young and old on, for once, a reasonably dry event. The last five years have seen heavy rain! Whilst Cambridge United kept a few folk detained at Wembley the rest of us enjoyed ourselves! I would like to say thank you to everyone who made the effort to come, even if they couldn't stay for lunch, and a huge thank you to Dave and Lorraine Nicholls who very generously sponsored the marquee which kept us all dry. The sum of £80 was donated to St. Mary's Church funds as a result of the day.
Well, I'm delighted to have been so well spoofed in the April issue, and it made me laugh. But it's no use trying to extend the joke - silly me, I should have guessed Sue Wade and Geoffrey Woollard couldn't possibly mean all those things about turning the Fen into a theme park, so on and such. I will be more restrained in responding to such claims in future.
Shirley, on the other hand, worries me a little. Surely in such a friendly and welcoming village like ours there's someone who can get her out of herself a bit more, and maybe focus her thoughts upon a less disturbing writer, Jane Austen or whatever - perhaps the book group could help?
Fortunately by the end of this month when the new Crier appears, we're past the kind of rural jollity that involves a maypole. Lord knows what would happen if someone were to explain to her the significance of that one.
And now these revelations, new ones every day
How well-paid politicians, supplement their pay.
Saying they haven't broken rules that they've made, anyway.
We may dislike their actions but must admire their technique.
I'm losing faith in the government -same as I did last week.