Thursday, 29 September 2011

Main Points of the Parish Council Meeting

At the monthly Full Council meeting, held in the church hall last Tuesday, the main points discussed were:

A reply was received from Highways about the cancellation of spraying pavements to kill weeds. Due to Government cuts the department is no longer able to do this. However, noxious weeds like ragwort and Japanese knotweed will be treated.

Weir Quay Water Sports Hub Club
At the Plans meeting in August, when the proposal for the above was discussed, the committee decided to defer their decision and request a site meeting by West Devon Borough Council. It was subsequently agreed that all Bere Ferrers Parish Councillors will hold their own site meeting and submit their recommendations to WDBC for consideration at the Planning meeting appropriate to this proposal.

Chairmans Comments
There are a number of courses available to Councillors taking place over the next few months and Mrs Boot-Handford thought that some of these may be appropriate to us. However, none of these courses were being held in the western part of Devon and it was felt that the organisers should be contacted and asked to set up similar courses in our area, suitable for the Southern Parishes area.

Review of Agreements
It was agreed that many of the agreements that Council has with other organisations (Bere Ferrers Villagers Group, the football club, etc) are out of date and need revising. Committees were asked to submit before the next Full Council those agreements that need updating.

Three-Year Plan
Committees were asked to submit their wish list for the next three years to the Clerk before the October meeting. This three-year plan is to cover what the Council could do and what other organisations could do for the Council.

Section 106 Fund
WDBC said that there have been no applications yet for the Pentillie Road money (Section 106), but there had been some interest from some groups, such as Youth2Youth.

Youth2Youth Hut
The hut will be power washed soon and repainted, with paint donated by Cllr Lamb. It was agreed that one of the walls would be designated a mural wall for the youth to decorate.

Notice Boards
The Clerk said that she had found two notice boards stored away. The sizes were checked and were found to be suitable for the new board at Bere Alston and replacement for the Bere Ferrers board.

Parking in Bere Ferrers
A letter from a resident of Trevethan Park about the difficulties of vehicular obstruction there was passed to Devon Highways as the Parish Council has no jurisdiction over highway matters. However, Highways recommended that this matter be reported to the local Police Beat Manager, PC Graham Callender.

Sunday, 25 September 2011

Saturday Shop Improvement

With the revised layout as described in an earlier post, the Shop was much more like its old atmosphere on Saturday. There is one major change: because of food and hygiene regulations and the close proximity of the toilets, there will not be any cafe tables in the lobby in future. However, this does mean that occasional stallholders can have their tables in there.

Forthcoming Events

Some forthcoming events, lifted from Bere Link, so check it for further details.

Man Talk
For men in the parish, come along to a monthly Saturday breakfast in the newly-refurbished Church Hall in Bere Alston, starting at 9am and finishing at 10am. Hearty Breakfast: £3.50, Smaller Breakfast: £2.00. Veggie option. The first one is on 1st October. Pre-book places with Nick Law 840229 or Brian 841232.

Villages in Action
The New Budapest Cafe Orchestra, St Andrew's Church, Friday 29th November at 8pm. Tickets from Ann Turner 841464, Margaret Willmott 840380 or at the Saturday Shop. Adults £8, children £6.

St Andrew's Singers
Concert in aid of the RNLI. Saturday 12th November, St Andrew's Church at 7.30pm. Guest artiste is Tyrone Piper. More details from Ann Parsons.

Open Gardens
In aid of St Luke's Hospice, Frances and David's garden at Weir Quay Cottage (Not sure where that is!!) on Saturday 15th October between 10am and 2pm, with tea, cakes and plants. Don't miss this fascinating garden with many rare and interesting trees.

Winter BereFest
Friday 7th 0ctober in the Parish Hall from 7pm until midnight. At least three bands. Over 18s only.

Saturday, 24 September 2011

Back to the Status Quo at the Saturday Shop

The Steering Committee of the Community Shop and Cafe had received several complaints about the way the tables were being allocated and laid out every Saturday, so this was discussed at a meeting yesterday. The situation has now been satisfactorily resolved: tables will resume their positions along the walls and will be for regular stallholders only. Any occasional vendor will use the Hazel Room. Coffee tables will be reinstated in the hall to regain the cafe ambience.
This is good news for those villagers who thought that the cafe atmosphere had disappeared, due to the coffee tables being moved to the lobby and Hazel Room.
Well done to the committee.

Thursday, 22 September 2011

Club 55

First Great Western, First TransPennine Express, First Hull Trains and First Capital Connect are running a joint Club 55 promotion between 19 September and 20 November 2011. Connecting journeys will also be available with Arriva Trains Wales.


A zonal promotion offering return travel within England, Wales and parts of Scotland for those aged 55 and over.

Flexible – no need to book in advance.

Standard Class and First Class tickets are available.


Club 55 is available to anyone aged 55 or over. Customers are required to carry proof of age when they travel to validate their ticket.

Valid for outward travel up to 20 November 2011.

Return travel is valid for up to one month from the date of outward travel, with all return travel being complete by 19 December 2011.

Available for First and Standard Class travel between any two stations on the FTPE, FHT, FCC and FGW networks. Connecting journeys are also available to/from stations on the ATW network for an additional £15 return (the same add-on fare applies to Standard and First Class Club 55 tickets)

Club 55 is only available for travel on the services of operators specified.

Travel Validity

Club 55 tickets are subject to peak travel restrictions to, from or via certain stations on Mondays to Fridays. The restrictions are as follows:

FIRST GREAT WESTERN: Not valid for travel to/from London Paddington on
trains timed to arrive at London Paddington before 1010, or timed to depart London Paddington between 1600 and 1916 inclusive, Monday to Friday.
Additionally, tickets are not valid on the 1406 or 1506 London Paddington to Penzance services, for boarding at London Paddington, on Fridays only.

Wednesday, 21 September 2011

No Speaker at Council Meeting

As reported earlier, it was hoped that a member of the Tamar Valley AONB would be a speaker at the Bere Ferrers Parish Council meeting in the church hall next Tuesday. Unfortunately, the person is unable to make the meeting but it is hoped he may be able to talk at a later meeting.

News from the Rail Forum

Journey Figures
Journey figures for our line from January to mid-August are 105,933, up 5.4% on the corresponding period last year and a third more than 2006 for the same period. The Association of Train Operating Companies issued a league table of branch line growth. The Tamar Valley Line was the ninth fastest-growing branch line in the country.
Rail Franchise
The existing First Great Western franchise ends in 2013 and various enterprises will be submitting proposals for running the network for, probably, the 15 years from then. FGW will be submitting a proposal. From a disastrous start some years ago, FGW have improved enormously: we have a better service than ever before, the carriages are in a better condition and generally speaking we have a railway to be proud of.
FGW want to continue running and improving the network and have some ambitious plans, but the decision will made by the Department for Transport (DfT). We need your help now to lobby our MP, Geoffrey Cox, to support FGW with their bid so that they can continue the improvements they have planned.
No Train Cancellations
There is a rumour going around that the middle of the day train will be cancelled by FGW. Julian Crow, Regional Manager West, said quite firmly that there were no plans to remove this train and with passenger numbers increasing it would be stupid to do so.
Tavistock Line
It was reported that, as part of the plan to reopen the line to Tavistock, Kilbride have sold the land to Bovis Homes for the building of the required number of houses to enable the extension to be built.
Tickets and Mobile Phones
It was mentioned that sometimes tickets do not work at the gate at Plymouth Station, which causes a hold-up. This can be caused by keeping the tickets next to a mobile phone or a battery-operated device; the battery can erase all the details on the strip on the ticket - so beware! Keep your tickets away from your phone!

Queen's Diamond Jubilee 2012

Next year is Her Majesty The Queen's Diamond Jubilee and the Villagers' Group has asked at two meetings of the Group for suggestions on how the village could celebrate the event. To date we have received no suggestions!
Perhaps folk are thinking that next year is a long way off, but it isn't! Depending on how we want to celebrate, it will need some fund raising, so we need to start now. If anyone has any serious suggestions please let me know as soon as possible.

Tuesday, 13 September 2011

Winter BereFest

BereCom proudly presents WINTER BEREFEST
Bands appearing:
• The Wireless      
• Your New Favourite Band
• Black Cat Bone
Fri 7th Oct 2011
Doors open 7pm - midnight
Bere Alston Parish Hall
Tickets £6 non-refundable. Over 18’s only –please be aware ID may be asked for if you are fortunate enough to look under 25 years old
Tickets on sale in Bere Alston and Bere Ferrers village shop(s) and from Committee members –Julie O, Julie Marks, Fern Hughes & Fran Luxton

Tuesday, 6 September 2011

The Ferret Goes Away

There will be a short period of inactivity on the blog because of the unavailablity of the Ferret due to holidays. Unless, of course, someone sends him news by email for uploading.......

Art Group Starts New Term

The Bere Ferrers Art Group started the winter term this morning, with many members braving the awful weather to listen to Richard Woodgate talk about painting autumn colours. Members then tried their hand (and brushes) at producing an autumnal scene.

Monday, 5 September 2011

Parish Council Meeting in Village

The September meeting of the Parish Council will be held in Bere Ferrers Church Hall on Tuesday 27th September. It is hoped that a speaker from the Tamar Valley AONB will be there to give a short talk about the Cordiale scheme. This is a collaboration between the Tamar Valley AONB and other protected landscapes in south-west England and northern France and is intended to shape the future of the Valley.

Come along if you're interested in the future of the Tamar Valley!

Saturday, 3 September 2011

Hysteria Over Weir Quay

This is a personal comment about the hysterical outbursts from some of the inhabitants of Weir Quay about the planning proposal from the Water Sports Hub Club.
OK, Weir Quay is a pretty place, but it is not the outstanding place that some residents try to make it. What is beautiful about a stretch of muddy water with a sprawling boatyard in the middle of it?
Some of the remarks made at the recent Plans meeting were, frankly, not sustainable. Increased traffic? Nonsense. The only problem with traffic will occur should the club's proposals be rejected - have FoWQ considered what will happen when all the boat trailers are parked along the verges through Weir Quay?
If it is such a beautiful place, why has Friends of Weir Quay desecrated it by sticking up, as I understand it, 21 posters? What about the electric pylons that dominate the skyline?
And there's all the nonsense about the clubhouse being seen from the Cornish bank; there's no one on the Cornish bank that would be able to see the clubhouse, apart from one farmer! He has been approached by the Hub Club, shown the plans and has given his approval - so another argument out of the window.
Now we come to the arsenic in the ground. If this is prevalent in the field where the club want to build, one can safely assume that the fields around about are similarly contaminated. So why are cattle grazing in these fields and how does this affect the food chain? Who is allowing his cattle to graze on these fields if they are so dangerous? Is DEFRA aware?
Let's have some reality from Friends of Weir Quay and less of the fanatical NIMBYism that's making them a laughing stock!
Weir Quay is a special place - but it's not that special!

A Message from Dotty Allan


Here is the link to the Bere Pen Mile(s):

Please share with anyone who you think would be interested.
Many thanks,
Keeping the community running

Thursday, 1 September 2011


                 Drop-in classes - Starting 5 September 2011
Yogalates (Yoga and Pilates)   Monday 10.30-11.45 am
                                               Yoga    Monday  7.00 – 8.30 pm

Bere Ferrers Church Hall
                            Enquiries:  Christine Poole 01822 840612 or 07712 646599


Has the Monday morning yoga class been hijacked?   What’s this Yogalates? 

There’s always something new in the fitness world, something different to grip the imagination and stimulate interest.  Take Margaret Morris Movement, Circle Dancing, Belly Dancing, aerobics, Zumba.  Many of them have been tried in the village, mostly at the Yoga Christmas parties!  But what is this Yogalates?
If you’ve ever been to a Pilates class you would have seen the Yoga influence, with the mental concentration, the control of the breath and careful positioning of the body, and you finish feeling toned and relaxed.  Pilates, however, focuses on developing “core” strength (abdominals and back muscles), whereas Yoga includes flexibility and a more wholistic approach to fitness.  Yogalates combines both flexibility and core strength.
We’re always looking for something new - the magic formula to get fit and stay healthy.  And that’s no bad thing.  Whatever keeps us motivated can only be good. After all, the only thing that really works is to do something regularly.  So, get on your bike (for the aerobic bit) and get to classes!