A rural parish in North Devon, England including Brayford village, High Bray and Charles, and a part of Exmoor National Park


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  From the February/March 2019 Newsletter: 


Tarmac The Nook
This resurfacing work is now imminent and as a result the area will not be accessible for a few days whilst the job is carried out. Due to continuing non compliance it needs to be stressed again that this area is for occasional parking only and vehicles must not be left overnight.

Play Area
Repairs to the Pirate Ship have been delayed so this item remains out of bounds until the work can be completed. Non urgent repair work to the wooden footbridge and fencing will hopefully be carried out in the Spring.

Highway Pot Holes
Clerk Joe Poole is constantly reporting to Devon Highways pot holes and other road issues such as the railings hazard at the top of Shop Hill. The PC is repeatedly asking Cllrs Edgell and Yablsey for action but neither seems able to get any response from the contractors involved.

Christmas Carols @ The Nook
A collection in excess of 170 was taken and it has been gratefully received by the Devon Air Ambulance Trust.

Peter Heaton-Jones MP
Our Member of Parliament for North Devon holds regular surgeries to discuss any issues parishioners may wish to raise. The next three local surgeries are as follows: Saturday, 2 February Barnstaple 10 am, Friday, 1 March Barnstaple 10 am, Friday, 15 March South Molton 9.30 am. Anyone wishing to attend is invited to telephone 01271 327990 to arrange an appointment.

Cllr Penny Crane
It is with regret that the PC has been obliged to accept the resignation of Penny. Whilst on the Council her contributions have been helpful, constructive and much appreciated. A vacancy has therefore become available and any parishioner interested in joining "the team" is invited to register their interest with the Clerk on 710236.

We have coffee in the Methodist Schoolroom on the first Wednesday in every month from 10.30 am to 12 pm. No money or fundraising but we could use a few more people to help. Please ring Ruby on 710417.

We had a "full Church" at our Christmas celebrations. Thank you Brayford Academy for two perfect performances of "Children of the World". We love to see the next generation making the Church "alive". Candlelit Carols was as well supported as usual. Thank you ringers, readers and all who came to join in. We are so pleased Tony Bawden has had his hip replacement and is now recovering at home.

We are eagerly looking for someone to accompany the Singing Group. We meetevery Thursday from about 7 pm to 8.30 pm and host Puddings & Song at High Bray Church twice a year, go for occasional visits to entertain at retirement homes and generally support the Village when asked. We are very informal and are an amateur group who just likes to get together to sing. No sophistication. For singers, no previous experience is necessary. For an accompanist, we would prefer using a keyboard, but would still like to hear from you if you play an accordion or guitar. If you would like to participate (either as a singer or as an accompanist) please phone Madeleine Brownell on 710389. We would love you to join us.

We were able to get in the Christmas spirit early by the annual visit from the school children. They entertained the Community Coffee Morning Group with a lively performance. This was enjoyed by the villagers and any parents able to join us. All three churches supported each other's special Christmas services, so everyone was in fine voice by the Christmas Eve Candlelit Service. Our regular Sunday services are held at 11 am and we would be very pleased to welcome you to join us. Our Breakfast Fellowship will be at 9.15 am on 17 February.

Gayle, Peter and Craig would like to say a huge thank you for the amazing support shown at their Tombola Stall at the Christmas Village Market. We raised 97 which will enable 4 hours of riding time for disabled children. Thank you everyone.

We hope you all had a peaceful and enjoyable Christmas and we wish you all a very happy New Year. A new year, a new term here at Brayford Academy and many new and exciting learning opportunities for the children. At the end of last term the teaching staff spent time with colleagues from Pilton Bluecoat and Umberleigh to plan this term's topic which is "Inventors and Inventions". The infant children will explore first hand how an inventor's mind works by becoming inventors. They will plan, design and make a range of useful inventions out of different materials. They will research famous inventors such as Graham Bell and Thomas Edison. The junior class children will learn about life changing inventions and significant inventors from the past by stepping into the shoes of an inventor and taking on the role. They will work together to come up with new inventions that address and improve global issues (such as reducing our plastic waste) and will have the opportunity to develop ideas, draw designs and make prototypes of their new inventions before presenting them in a Dragons' Den style event. We were lucky to welcome the upcoming children's author, C.S. Clifford on Monday. Mr Clifford talked passionately about the books he has written and the children were able to ask him questions about being an author. He talked about his latest books, "The Walking With" series, where on each adventure the characters meet and engage with a different myth or legend from history and play a vital role on a quest. The children participated in workshops in which they used their imaginations to produce some creative and descriptive writing. It was a really inspiring visit and the PTFA have purchased some of C.S. Clifford's books for the library. We were pleased to welcome some new pre-school children into our Brumble Bees unit this term and we are happy to report that they have settled in really well and are enjoying their time at Brayford Academy. We are always open to new families interested in the school and they are welcome to come and visit at any time by ringing the office to let us know when it is convenient. If you know of any families looking for a good school for their children then please let them know about Brayford Academy. More information about the school can be found on our website: http:\\ This term the first community lunch at school will be on Wednesday 23 January followed by Wednesday 27 February and Tuesday 19 March. Lunch will cost 5. Please ring the school office on 710345 to book a place.

Meetings are held at the Methodist Schoolroom at 7 pm on the second and fourth Wednesdays of each month - unless otherwise stated. Leaders Lisa Ward 710488 and Nick Jefferson 740283. 11-16 year olds are warmly welcome with their ideas.

Join us for a "Big Breakfast" in aid of North Devon Hospice at Brayford Village Hall on Saturday, 2 March. Full English Breakfast will be served between 9 am and 11.30 am. There will also be a raffle and tombola. For further information please contact Doreen Woodrow on 710409. Please bring all your friends.

The Church Annual Meeting will take place in the Church on Sunday 3 March at 5.30 pm, followed by Evensong at 6.30 pm. All are welcome at this meeting. The Church Electoral Roll will be revised during the previous weeks and anyone interested in membership should contact Margaret Faulkner on 710440 for more information. The Quiz Night at Sandyway back in November and the community lunch at North Molton Poltimore Inn were most enjoyable - thanks to all those involved in the planning. More planning for the month of June in Charles when we join in the celebrations to mark 150 years of publication of Lorna Doone. The festivities will focus on R D Blackmore, the author (1825-1900) and his association with the village of Charles. There will be an exhibition and an entertainment, combining the reading of extracts from the novel, 19th Century music and local history on Sunday 23 June. The Patron Saint for Charles Church is St John the Baptist, who will be celebrated on Monday 24 June during the evening (TBA). More details will soon be available but anyone interested in being involved should enquire in the meantime from Annie Whitehead (710769), Jonathan Hudson (710350), Anna Whinney (760217), Jane Horne (710392) or Margaret Faulkner (710440), or see "In Touch" for more information.

The next quiz will be on Friday 5 April with a 7.30 pm start in Brayford Village Hall. The quiz is for teams of up to 6 people and the charge to enter is 3 for adults, 1 for 11-16 year olds, with under 10s free. The categories will be Where in the World, Astronomy, Monarchy, Screen Test, TV Teaser, History Test, Around Britain and Creature Feature. There will also be a raffle and you may bring your own drink. The last Church Quiz held on 21 September 2018 raised 290 so thank you all who came along.

Our last two fund raising events were a huge success, both from a fun evening point of view and financially. Our grateful thanks to all those that support these events and in particular the Village Hall Management Committee who put so much of their time into organising and running the evenings. The Ferret Racing Night was a first for Brayford Village Hall management committee. It turned out to be a parents and small children fun event and was greatly enjoyed by everyone. We plan to hold another race night later in the year and hope that even more families will attend. The plans for the rest of the year include 8 February - Bingo (please note this is a Friday night), 15 March - Quiz Night (at the Sportsman Inn with a buffet dinner), 14 April - Treasure Hunt (held in conjunction with the W.I. late afternoon dinner, raffle and bar), 27 May - Duck Race, 19 October - Bingo and 23 November - Ferret Racing. We are still seeking a Secretary for the Village Hall Management Committee. The task is not very onerous but rewarding and we hope that someone with new ideas and energy will join our committee. If anyone is interested in the role or would like to become a member of the committee please contact Joe Poole on 710326 or

At our January meeting, we were delighted to welcome Ian Kingdom who spoke to us about Driving Safer for Longer - perhaps Ian should go and talk to Prince Philip on a few matters! We are always glad to learn more, especially as the roads are getting so busy. On 13 February we are looking forward to hearing Jacci's husband, Malcolm Gardner, talk about their recent trip to India and on 13 March our speaker is from the charity, Farms for City Children. In the meantime we are happy to report that our Skittles team is having success and lots of fun. A match with Kentisbury W.I. is scheduled for 23 January. High Bray and Charles W.I. is hosting the Spring Group Meeting on 29 April and there is a busy timetable from Devon Federation with a variety of activities for the winter months. Meetings start at 7.15 pm in the Village Hall.

This is a quieter time of year for events because we all want to sit by the fire and keep warm but a few things are happening which will, hopefully, be well supported.

 Thanks to the Newsletter Editor for providing Newsletter information.

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