The photograph left shows the porch at St. Andrew’s as it looks today – a little sad and in need of restoration. Whilst the formal process of enabling this restoration to take place is well advanced and the job of raising the necessary funds is underway [but sadly still well short of what is needed], the journey of exploring the porch’s history has been a time consuming although interesting one.
This photograph from 1961 [of Margaret (Peggy) Davies] is the best one we have to show-case the heavy oak gates on the porch that village elders remember. Other wedding photographs collected for a Platinum Jubilee Exhibition, indicate that the gates were removed some-time between 1967-71. We are told that they were often pegged back although they needed to be shut when sheep were grazing in the church yard!
Fast forward to around 2020 and all that was left of this distinctive entrance feature was part of a single gate, decaying in the churchyard shed.
As part of the research to ascertain the porch’s historical significance [needed to obtain the necessary legal permission or ‘faculty’ to restore it] the decaying wood from the gate was laid out like a particularly tricky jigsaw to check what might be salvaged.
Anthony (Tony) Cramp, from Church House kindly agreed to use his practical skills and creative talents so as to reconstitute a panel from the gate. This gives us (and indeed the church architect) a record of what has gone before. This re-constituted piece – heavily doused in treatment for woodworm – is on display in the church alongside the architect’s plans for the restoration of the porch.
This left us with a jumble of bits and pieces, many crumbling away. One of our number had the brain-wave that a rustic cross could be made for the altar when the ‘silverware’ is not in use. As if by divine intervention, four of the remaining pieces were exactly the right proportions and needed no extra shaping. Tony, however, performed a small miracle in ‘invisibly stitching’ them together, as well as treating and cleaning the timber, but as the wood was pointed at the bottom it would not stand upright without some modification. The picture left shows that the cross looked beautiful, but given its weight, carrying it around looked rather like a one person Passion Play as it was best hefted up against your shoulder!
Rather than destroying this feature in the original wood, we sought the advice of David Lloyd of The Butts Cottages about making a metal stand that would keep the cross vertical. Having given David a garbled specification together with the pious hope that it might be ready for the Queen’s Jubilee, we left him to ponder potential solutions; this was a real challenge given that the cross is so heavy. Several weeks later, David’s skill in metal work was apparent for all to see when the cross appeared back in my hall. Like Tony before him, David had done an excellent job – this time in creating a sturdy and yet delicate and aesthetically pleasing base which held the cross firmly upright.
The beautiful cross was proudly in place on the altar of the church for the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations in June 2022. It was much admired by the many parishioners who came to the bell ringers ‘open session’ and to view the display of Allensmore photographs and memorabilia during the Queen’s lifetime. Our final picture shows how the cross complements the woodwork of the communion table.
In our sustainability-minded times, we can truly take pride that our local crafts-people have RE-USED and RE-CYCLED to make this splendid new addition to St. Andrew’s. However, given its core purpose, perhaps the last word needs to be RESURRECTED!
Our community celebration on Sunday 5th June, got off to a splendid start with the bells at St. Andrew’s ringing joyfully. Around thirty residents watched the ringers in action, and some even had a try at ringing under supervision. They then joined other friends and neighbours at Little Village Farm for a picnic and various activities by kind invitation of Mark & Brigitte Ratcliffe who had prepared. The venue brought back happy memories of the Silver Jubilee party which was held in a field opposite.
In honour of the Queen’s historic Jubilee, our host gave the loyal toast and John Harris from Cobhall Common cut the first slice of the wonderful “jubilee” cake made by Carol Williams and iced in patriotic detail by Alison Pratlett. Using the hand-bells, several of the St. Andrew’s ringers then accompanied the party- goers in a rendition of “God Save The Queen”.
The Platinum Pudding Committee would surely have given Allensmore the first prize for the tables laden with delicious desserts! Many thanks to all those who brought a pudding to share to the event.
Picnic-goers enjoyed the opportunity to reminisce over the photographs & memorabilia of weddings and life in rural Allensmore during the Queen’s lifetime. Thanks to Yvonne Chapman for collecting such an informative display; this would not have been possible without the willingness of people to share information, for which we are grateful. Yvonne says, collecting local history doesn’t stop here, so keep those photographs and memories coming!
In spite of the British weather 100 plus people from across the generations supported our event, along with several very well-behaved dogs, which was brilliant to see. A sincere thank you to all who helped with the planning, setting-up and inevitable clearing away, and to all those who came to make it a truly memorable occasion. As someone summarised, what a wonderful community get together…who cares about the weather when we are having so much fun!
More pictures of the weekend are below – click on them to enlarge …
Even more photos of the weekend are here. If you have any pictures you’d like to add to this album, please email them to Nick at email@example.com
In celebration of the Queen’s 70 years on the throne, a display has been put together of photographs as well as recollections of people, places and events in Allensmore during the Queen’s lifetime. The display will be on view in St. Andrew’s church from Thursday 2nd June until 4th June. On the morning of 5th June it will move up Church Road to Little Village Farm (HR2 9AF), ready for viewing during the Queen’s Platinum Picnic, which starts at 2.00 p.m.
We do hope that you will be able to come along to see the display – one of the highlights being photographs of many of the brides and grooms who have married at St. Andrew’s.
Why not combine this with a ‘bring your own picnic’ to little Village Farm? The church bells will also be ringing from 2.00 p.m. on 5th June – you might like to start at the church and see the ringers in action before strolling up the road to Little Village Farm for an afternoon of good company and celebration of the Queen’s reign.
The June ramble and barbecue will take place on Saturday 4th June starting at Huntly, Cobhall Common, Allensmore, HR2 9BN, by kind invitation of Andrew & Carol Manning.
The ramble will be at 3.00pm when we will wander around the footpaths of Allensmore and return to Huntly for 5.00pm to enjoy the locally produced barbecue fare.
You are welcome to join us for the ramble and/or the barbecue. We will of course endeavour to include reference to the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee with a red, white and blue cake or maybe someone will produce the Lemon Jubilee Trifle!
On Sunday February 6th, Her Majesty the Queen celebrates 70 years since she acceded to the throne. Whilst the main celebrations are planned for June, many church towers across the country will be ringing their bells on the actual Accession Day anniversary.
Allensmore bellringers will join this celebration and will be ringing between 10:30 and 11:00 on Sunday February 6th. But we would also like to share the event with the Allensmore community. So please come along to St Andrews church and watch us ringing; there will also be a camera on the bells so you will be able to see what happens up in the tower as we pull the ropes!
Visitors will also have an opportunity to join in towards the end of the session. With the bells in a “safe” position and under the supervision of an experienced ringer, you will be welcome to have a go at pulling on a rope and chiming a bell. Everybody that rings will be added to the list of Allensmore ringers for the day and be logged on the central bellringers’ website. After the June Bank Holiday weekend, details of the ringing that took place for both the Accession Day and over the Jubilee Weekend will be collated and presented to Her Majesty with the grateful thanks of the bellringing community for her unique service to the nation and Commonwealth.
Parts of Cobhall Common are particularly badly affected by surface water flooding, with a number of households being flooded several times in the recent past.
Those whose families have lived on the Common for several generations report that the problem of surface water flooding is getting worse e.g. one of the properties flooded last winter had not done so in the previous 30 years.
We have a short window of opportunity to add an additional 12″ pipeline to alleviate the build up of surface water. The proposed underground pipeline would run between Murrayfield and Yew Tree Cottage and through the new building plots to the drainage ditch behind.
Cost of the new pipeline would be around £10,000. On their meeting on 8th November, the Parish Council agreed to contribute £3,000 to the scheme; residents are now determined to raise the remaining £7,000 in quick time!