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Five Parishes Magazine


Five Parishes magazineThis magazine is published monthly and is distributed free to every household in the Five Parishes.
For editorial and advertisement sales in the Five Parishes Magazine contact Mrs Angela Harbottle, 8 St Edmunds Croft, Dunmow, CM6 3AZ on 01371 876707 or via Email.

The latest edition of The Five Parishes Magazine contains the following editorial content.  For various reasons we are unable to publish the names, telephone numbers etc of private individuals.  However if you require further information about any of the events mentioned, the Editor, Angela, will be happy to help you.  Contributions for the Magazine should reach her by latest 10th of the month prior to month of publication.


Priest-in-Charge: Revd Tim Goodbody writes from The Vicarage, 7 Ruffels Place, Stebbing, CM6 3TJ
Telephone 01371 856080 /
07708 660162 Email
Curate: Revd Janet Parker Telephone 01371 870920 Email

February 2020

Dear Friends

Well, we’re just a few days into 2020 and I’m tiring swiftly of all these allusions to being able to see perfectly this year (20/20 vision).  We’ve already had a lunar eclipse, massive bushfires, a Middle East escalation following an assassination, and a Royal “retirement” just in the first few days of January.  For those of us who were quite glad to see the back of 2019, this has already become a bit of a rollercoaster year.

At the end of one of the most famous chapters in the Bible, 1 Corinthians 13 (you’ve heard it at a wedding) is the powerful phrase “And now these three remain, Faith Hope and Love. But the greatest of these is Love”.  For me one of the many good things about being a Christian, belonging to the church, is that in a rapidly changing world, both the good news of the love of God in Christ and the cycle of the Church’s year that expresses that love in worship provide a firm foundation, a regular structure to life, when everything around us seems to be rather unstable and unpredictable.

By the end of this month we will be in the season of Lent, beginning our journey of discipline in preparation for Easter.  There’ll be more information about that next month but for now remember that the love of God for the world is unchanging, from one year to the next, from one continent to the next.  We may not have 20/20 vision to be able to see and understand everything that is happening around us, but we have a God who can and does see.  In his amazing word-changing gift of his Son Jesus, he brought about the salvation of the world, and inaugurated the new Creation. Christmas was about the beginning of that story, and Easter is about the end.

Yet it isn’t really the end, but another new beginning.  The resurrection of Jesus, the focal point of history, provides an anchor to fix our reference points so that we are not lost in the storms of life. Faith Hope and Love Remain, but the greatest of these is Love.

With best wishes





The Salings (GS: Great and LS: Little)


2nd February Candlemas/ Presentation of Christ in the Temple

9.30 Holy Communion

11am CW Holy Communion @ GS

11am Morning Prayer
3.30-5pm TOTS

9th February

3rd before Lent

9.30am Morning Prayer

9.30am Morning Prayer @ LS

11am CW Holy Communion with Kids Connect

16th February
2nd before Lent

9.30am Holy Communion

11am Family Service @ GS

8am BCP Holy Communion
11am Informal with Kids Connect

23rd February
Next before Lent

9.30am Family Service
5pm Healing Service

9.30am CW Holy Communion @ LS

11am CW Holy Communion with Kids Connect

26th February
Ash Wednesday

7.30pm CW Holy Communion



1st March
1st Sunday of Lent

9.30 Holy Communion

11am BCP Holy Communion @ GS

11am Morning Prayer
3.30-5pm TOTS



Stop Stansted Expansion (SSE) is urging Uttlesford District Council (UDC) to await the final outcome of SSE’s High Court challenge as well as the publication of the Government’s new aviation policy – both expected at any time – before making a decision on the current Stansted Airport planning application.

Uttlesford planning officers have been pressing their councillors to decide the controversial planning application as soon as possible.  They set a timetable which could mean that councillors would be forced to vote at a Special Meeting of the Planning Committee scheduled for 24th January.  For more than a year officers have been recommending that councillors should approve the airport planning application submitted by Stansted’s owners, the Manchester Airports Group (MAG), in February 2018.  If approved, it would allow an additional 15 million passengers (54% increase) and an additional 75,000 flights a year (38% increase) compared to 2019. 


Live gently and enhance God’s creation in 2020

When I’m having a bad day – or just as importantly, when I’m feeling a bit too pleased with myself – I say to myself that one day I will be my successors’ predecessor.  I find this helps me put myself in perspective.  It also helps me to pray that the decisions I take are not simply for the good of the Diocese while I’m bishop, but will be for the benefit of future generations in East London and Essex.  As I pray on the eve of 2020, I also wonder what our world will look like when the Bishop of Chelmsford writes a New Year message in 2070 or 2120.

This past year has seen concern for the environment grow.  Where once we talked about sustainability, we now question whether the fundamentals of our present existence on this planet are sustainable at all.  We now tend to talk about climate emergency not just climate change.  As this emergency deepens, it is the poorest and most vulnerable who are suffering most.

In October, I took my staff team to the Franciscan Friary at Hilfield in Dorset to learn how a community of Christians can intentionally adapt their lives to not only reduce their environmental impact but also positively enhance their corner of creation.  Please visit them yourself and learn from them.  Their heat comes from biomass.  Much of their power from solar.  Their food is LOAF (local, organic, animal-friendly and fairly-traded).  Their animals naturally tend their wildflower meadows and they generously work with their neighbours to create corridors to support natural habitats.

How would our attitude to God’s creation differ if we, like the Franciscans, had to draw our water from the ground directly beneath our feet?  Would we discharge the waste and chemicals into the soil and drains that we currently do?

Please join me this year in seeking to live gently in the world and enhance God’s creation.  You are your successors’ predecessor.  In 2020 bless the inheritance that you bequeath them.  I wish you a peaceful, gentle and sustainable 2020.


2020 Deanery Walk

The first walk of 2020 will take place on Saturday 15th February starting and finishing at St Mary’s Church, Great Dunmow, postcode CM6 2AE and G/R 629 229.  Queries to Mike Best on 01371 872290 or  The walk will start at 9am and there is plenty of parking at the end of the drive, past the church.  As always, light refreshments will be available after the walk, followed by a short service.  Suitable footwear for country walking is advisable and dogs on leads are always welcome.

The theme of the walks this year is Science and Arts which is being promoted by Essex County Council in 2020.  It is hoped that this will give an added interest to our walks.


February is a bit of a ‘bridging month’.  On Sunday 2nd, Candlemas, we say a final goodbye to Christmas, and then turn our attention to the Baptism of Jesus by John the Baptist and St Valentine’s Day.  Only twelve days after that, we will be into Shrove Tuesday, Ash Wednesday and Lent – with Easter looming up in the distance.  See churchwarden Warwick Newbury’s item about the service at Little Easton on 9th February plus all other details on the cover.


However you celebrated Christmas, hopefully with enjoyment, life has returned to a less frenetic normality.  But, for many across the world, life will never be the same.  Some have seen their homes and possessions burned to the ground whilst others have watched as torrents of dirty water have washed theirs away.  We watch the news broadcasts with horror and, perhaps, feelings of helplessness. “What can I do?”

100,000 revellers packed into the streets around Victoria Embankment to watch a spectacular firework display to herald in 2020.  Sadiq Khan, the Mayor of London, referencing the Euro 2020 football tournament, told us the “world” will be watching the display, and he hoped it would show London was a “global city” and that, although we may be leaving the EU, we would not become insular and inward-looking, but would continue to be open to people’s trade and ideas.

Later this year the UK will host the main summit of the 26th Conference of the Parties, (COP26).  30,000 delegates are expected to converge on Glasgow to discuss how to “globally” tackle the climate emergency.  Italy will host preparatory events and a significant youth event.

Jesus when asked: “Who is my neighbour?” responded with the story of the Good Samaritan.  A stranger, from a foreign land, ministering to an injured person.  The UK has always responded generously to local and international crises and, I am sure, will continue to do so.  But.  We need to ask ourselves what do we each need to change in our daily lives to truly live in a sustainable way AND reverse the damage we are doing that so detrimentally affects our global neighbours?

In his New Year Message, Bishop Stephen sums up his visit to Hilfield Franciscan Friary as “Living gently” in the world.  Living gently may require radical change – so let us be ahead of COP and show world leaders the way in all we do in this next decade. 


Warwick Newbury writes:  Just before the Revd Janet Parker departed for a well-earned break, she asked that I remind everyone that on Sunday 9th February Bishop Roger will be joining her to lead our 11am Common Worship Holy Communion at Little Easton.  Janet has invited him to stay on after the service for a chat and a “bring and share” lunch.

We have the option to bring a plate to share or just bring what we plan to eat ourselves.  If I may, I should like to stress that anyone with any food allergies should only eat their own lunch.  If you are happy to bring a plate to share, please e-mail me ( so that we do not end up with just sausage rolls!  We can supply coffee, mugs and glasses but please bring your own plates and cutlery.


Ron Gilder writes on behalf of Christmas Markets events team on the Christmas Market on 8th December at Little Easton Manor: 

After loads of planning and a little worry, the Market day arrived on a thankfully dry day with clear skies.  After a frantic set up of all the stalls, we waited to see who would come – at the 10:30am opening the number was 0 but within 15 minutes all the sites were busy with visitors whose numbers steadily increased into the hundreds as the day went on.  The stalls ranged from doorstops to holly wreaths with almost everything else in between.  Santa Claus (Carl Mitchell in disguise) entertained many children, including pupils from Great Easton Primary School, and Isabelle’s choir and the craft area entertained a packed church. 

Yes, I am pleased to say it was a success and the team are delighted that over £1,400 was raised for the churches in the Five Parishes.  Thanks to everyone who helped make it happen, to Andy Mahoney for letting us use his home and mostly to all who attended.


Brian Miller writes: The December draw resulted in Cork No 52.  I am sure the Great Easton winner will be delighted to receive a cheque for £50 to start off the New Year 2020.


The Eastons & Tilty W.I. meeting on Thursday 13th February 2020 will be a soup lunch (12.30 pm for 1pm) followed by an auction.  If you have any unwanted articles to put in the auction, do bring them along.  New members are always welcome.  For further information please contact either President, Doreen Hart, on 01371 870830 or Secretary Christine Chalkley, on 01371 852180.  New members are always welcome.


Jill Goldsmith writes:  We have been looking back at our recent snowdrop days but they give us little clue as to what we can expect: we had a heat wave in February 2019 with record temperatures more like an early summer’s day and in February 2018 the start of the Beast from the East!  Undaunted, we are planning for the best and building a new wooden gazebo so that we can have an additional catering outlet, just in case!  Our Snowdrop Open Days are on Sundays 16th and 23rd February, gates open 11.30, with last entry at 3.00 pm.  Our volunteers will provide tasty homemade soup; bacon/cheese/hummus rolls and, of course, homemade cakes!  We will have snowdrops in the green for sale. 

In 2019 Landsec funded the restoration of the stone steps into the Italian Garden and, based on that really positive experience, the next big stone restoration project is planned in 2020/21: the balustrade around the lily pond.  The Co-Op have enabled their members to support this project every time they shop – so if that’s you, even if you only sometimes shop in the Co-Op, please sign up to help us – see website: 

We have updated our website with key information for 2020 and will continue to do so.  So put our dates in your diary and maybe buy a season ticket?  They are excellent value! Season tickets are available on the gate or through the website.  Go to


The meeting on Tuesday 4th February will be an in-house demonstration.  The Club meets at 7.30pm at the United Reformed Church, Bolford Street, Thaxted CM6 2PY.  Non-members are very welcome, the visitor’s cost is £6 per meeting.


The speaker on Monday 24th February will be a talk on the subject What Do I Do with This Space?  The Club meets in The Day Centre, access via Margaret Street car park, at 7.15pm.  Cost is £3 per person and £1 per ticket for the raffle.


The 2020 programme is full of interesting trips and visits, monthly open meetings and 33 interest groups meeting weekly, or monthly.  Monthly open meetings for the first 6 months are:

29th January: Pounds, Shillings and Poverty in the Victorian Era  David Williams
26th February: Tripe and Trotters: Tales of a post-war Northern Childhood Brian Carline
25th March:  Emily Yarrow, Cabaret Singer
29th April: What’s in a name? The Origins of English Place Names Anthony Poulton-Smith
27th May: Hearing Dogs Sophie Biebuyck
24th June: The Yanks are Coming: An American’s view of a Suffolk Village Linda Scholes

These are held at ET Foakes Memorial Hall at 2pm.  All welcome.  For more information on all events and groups, see website


Organisers send a huge thank you to everyone who supported their charity event raising money for the Essex & Herts Air Ambulance Trust.  Thanks go to everyone who baked cakes, donated raffle prizes, helped on the day, drank the tea and bought raffle tickets.  Also the fantastic range of stallholders including Janette for her fabulous knitted toys and to Optoelectronics, Aquaid and E Corr for their generous donations.  Together you all made it a huge success, raising a phenomenal £5,009.


This local animal rescue centre and working community farm has re-homed a terrific amount of animals.  They are open every Tuesday and Thursday from 9am to 3pm and Saturdays from 11am to 3pm in Hall Road, Elsenham, CM22 6DN.  If you have any time to spare they would love to hear from you, whether it is to help with the animals or to give administrative support or construction know how or to get involved with fundraising events. 

They rely on these events, their recent Christmas Sleigh Ride to Santa extravaganza being the perfect way to kick off the festive season for everyone!  The children went on an exciting horse drawn cart through the trees down to Santa’s Grotto to meet the man himself and they also wandered around the variety of animals at the farm and fed them too if they wanted.

For further information, please contact 07747 787973 or visit  They look forward to hearing from you.


The Foodbank has a job vacancy for a full time, enthusiastic and versatile Foodbank Project Manager from 1st April, ideally with experience of working within a charity.  Hours: 37 per week to be worked flexibly, including occasional evenings and weekends.  Pay: £24,000 per annum.  Please call or e-mail for an application form or further information to Maggie Drewett on 01376 330694 or

The food items currently required are: packet and tinned custard, rice pudding, tinned fruit, tinned soup and sponge puddings.  Non-food items needed: shower gel, shampoo, deodorants, washing-up liquid, washing liquid and nappies (size 4 and 5).


St Clare Hospice’s annual Winter Walkies event returns on Sunday 23rd February at 11am and will include a 5k dog walk, starting and finishing at the Hospice in Hastingwood.  Registration on the day is from 10am at the Hospice or in advance online at  St Clare Hospice is located at Hastingwood Road, Hastingwood, Essex, CM17 9JX.  Registration costs £10 for adults and £5 for children, which includes a free soup, dog rosette and certificates for children.

Also the Hospice is launching a support group for local people within West Essex and East Herts, who care for or support a friend or relative living with a life-limiting illness or disability.  St Clare’s Carers’ Group runs over a period of six weeks, with the first course starting on Friday 7th February, 10am – 12 noon, through until 20th March.  The course is free to attend.  If you would like to attend, you will need to book your place and undergo a telephone assessment by calling 01279 773768.  Another three courses are scheduled throughout the year.


RON NEWCOMBE:  We were very sad to learn of the passing of Ron Newcombe on 8th January.  Although of late living in Takeley, he was well-known and well liked throughout the Five Parishes and had been a supporter of this Magazine for many years.  He will be much missed.  We send condolences to Barbara and his family and friends.


Shrove Tuesday, which precedes Ash Wednesday, the start of Lent, is the traditional day for enjoying pancakes.  When animal products, such as eggs and fat, were prohibited during Lent, pancakes were a quick and tasty way to use up these products.  This recipe is a twist on the basic pancake batter.

Chocolate Pancakes with Caramelised Bananas

Serves 8 approx.

75g (3oz) plain flour; 25g (1oz) cocoa powder; 2 eggs; 275ml (10fl oz) milk;1 teaspoon caster sugar; cooking oil
For the filling: bananas, butter and chocolate sauce

To make the pancakes:
Sift the flour, cocoa powder and sugar into a mixing bowl.  Make a well in the centre and drop in the eggs.  Gradually beat or whisk in the milk until the batter is smooth and not lumpy.  If possible, leave the batter to rest for 30 minutes, then give another whisk.  Heat the pan until it is really hot, then swirl some oil to coat the base.  Add about 2 tablespoons of batter to the pan and swirl it around evenly.  Cook for about 30 seconds on each side.

To make the filling:
Fry sliced bananas in butter to caramelise.  Scatter over cooked chocolate pancakes and drizzle with chocolate sauce.

If you have a favourite recipe, seasonal or otherwise, which you would like to share, please send it to Gill Willoughby at


Our Autumn Term finished with a bang!  We performed six shows of our Christmas plays, all were packed with proud audience members – family, friends and staff.  The children were brilliant; they impress us every year with the amount of lines they are able to learn, their amazing singing, their confidence on stage and their ability to cope with the extreme temperature of performing under stage lighting!  We also went on a Winter Walk which, due to all the rain, was a rather muddy affair!  We finished with a play in the Great Easton park before heading back to school for lunch.

Our Christmas Carol concert and Christingle service was brilliant.  The church was really full and there was a lovely atmosphere.  The service started with a solo of the first verse of Once in Royal David’s City by one of our year six girls and we also had some performances from children who are learning instruments.  Each class sang a song as well as carols for the whole congregation to join with.  We finished with our special ‘active’ rendition of The Twelve Days of Christmas, which leaves everyone in need of stiff drink and a little nap!

We hope you had a lovely Christmas break and a great start to 2020.  We are looking forward to an action packed term with our fabulous children.

Claire Jackman and Holly Miles
Headteacher and Year 4/5 Teacher/Assistant Headteacher



See details in News for All Parishes of Bishop Roger’s visit on 9th February.



It is noted that the Manor Road/Playing Field boundary fencing is broken.  The Council has gone out to tender for replacement, complete with new "slalom style" midway access point.

Litter Bin

A request has gone into UDC for their agreement to empty an additional litter bin to be placed by the Cricket Pavilion.  If agreed, the Council will purchase another bin.

Play Area Surfacing

A recent successful grant bid towards the cost of resurfacing has enabled the Council to place an order to renew and greatly improve the safety surfacing in and around the play equipment.


The Memorial Hall Management Committee advise that the current very poor state of the bridleway/footpath section of Manor Road has become a concern to the Committee, residents and hirers of the Hall.  The Committee wish to provide a safe environment for all users and consider that the road has now become unsafe for pedestrians and disabled persons.  The Committee is going to fill in the potholes at its own expense and with no cost to residents.

Residents should note that the car park gate is now being locked at night.  If access is needed by residents, the code can be obtained from the Bookings Officer.


The monthly gathering of parishioners is held on the last Thursday of each month and so hopefully everyone will come along on Thursday 27th February.  Do keep an eye on The Stag website and Facebook page  Get out, away from the tech, be social and support your local!

The Five Parishes Knit and Natter Club is held at The Stag on alternate Wednesdays of the month.  For more information contact Glen on 01371 870214 or join the Facebook group  All are welcome for knitting and/or nattering.


We are pleased to introduce our new Correspondent for Little Easton – Jayne Paul.  Being a long term resident and known to everyone, we are confident that Jayne will successfully take up the role held for so many years by Michael Smith.  Her contact details are shown in the heading of this section.  Please do give your newsy news each month in good time for her to relay it to the Editor.


Jenny Green would like to thank the residents of Manor Road and Butchers Pastures for the donations given to the Poppy Appeal, when £63.98 was collected.


Apologies for the wrong information given in our January issue: it was not until well into January that the Mobile Library Service issued a correction to the published dates.  The service will be at Butchers Pasture on Thursday 6th February 2020, arriving at 9.35am and leaving at 10.05am.


To hire the hall, contact Jenny Green on 01371 870402.  For more details see the hall website at


1pm to 2.15pm

British Lung Foundation Exercise Class


2.30pm to 4pm

Active with Parkinson’s


8pm to 10.15pm

Carpet Bowls

Wednesday (first 3 in every month)

7.30pm to 10pm

Great Dunmow & District Ringcraft Society


10am to 12 noon

Art Club



Dog Training


GEOFF PARKER:  It was with much sadness that we learned of the death on the 16th December of Geoffrey Parker and we send sincere condolences to his wife, Dot, and to his children, Ian and Suzanne, and their families and friends.  A Memorial Service to celebrate Geoff’s life will be held at Little Easton Church on Saturday 8th February at 3.30pm.  People are welcome to join them at the service and Dot asks for bright clothes be worn and a willingness to sing!  She would also welcome any stories or anecdotes about Geoff that can be shared, particularly in earlier years when he had more humour in his life.  Please let her have any contributions in advance.  Family flowers only and donations to the Community Heartbeat Trust, the charity focused on the provision of life saving defibrillation services to local communities.

The Service will be followed by refreshments in Little Easton Memorial Hall (postcode CM6 2JR).  Please let Dot know on if you wish to attend.  There will be a prior service at Chelmsford Crematorium, Writtle Road, Chelmsford CM1 3BL on Thursday 30th January at 3.30pm.



The Poppy Appeal Organiser for Dunmow and District has written to the Great Easton congregation thanking them for their very generous donation of £205 collected at the service held on the village green.  The money for the Poppy Appeal will help make a difference to those who have served in all branches of the armed forces.


The next meeting of the Parish Council will be on Thursday 27th February commencing at 7.30pm in Great Easton Village Hall.  All are welcome.  Minutes of the meetings will be posted on the notice boards in Great Easton, Duton Hill and Tilty and also on the new website  Information is also available on the Council’s Facebook page, which please like and share.  If you need to contact the Parish Clerk, please e-mail


Our correspondent writes:  I am sure everyone is aware of the flooding we sustained in Great Easton.  Even though the water was over 8ft high, people still attempted to drive through it!  The missing marker is being repaired and put back in place so we will be able to see the height of the water, and we are awaiting the removal of the car by the Environment Agency.  The fence will also be repaired eventually!


The 2020 race takes place on Saturday 5th September.  That is around 7 months away so, no excuses, it is time to SVDB – Scope, Visualise, Design and Build!  A project for the summer.  Results of the 2019 race will be given in our next issue, together with some details about the families who were given the chance to benefit from a holiday at Centre Algarve, the chosen charity for that year’s race.  Results like that can only be achieved with the support of many volunteers, so please do put this date in your diary.


Apologies for the wrong information given in our January issue: it was not until well into January that the Mobile Library Service issued a correction to the published dates.  This service will be at the Great Easton Village Hall on Friday 21st February, arriving at 12.05pm and leaving at 12.35pm.


To hire the hall, contact Audrey Miller on 01371 870927


6.30 to 9.30pm

Dog Training



Sarah McLagan’s Keep Fit
and Circuit Training


9.30 to 11.30am

Five Parishes Toddler Group


9.30 to 12.30pm
1.00 to 4.00pm

Upholstery class and
except for half term weeks


EDDIE GRAY: We are sad to announce the death of Eddie Gray on 5th January aged 92.  Eddie and Marina lived in Rebecca Meade for over 20 years, moving away to Ipswich a few years ago to be nearer their daughter.  He could always be seen in later years sitting in the front room window reading his book.  Our thoughts go to Marina and her family at this said time.

PHILIP BOND: We were saddened to hear that Philip Bond died on 6th January, in hospital where he had been for a month.  We send our condolences to Brenda and his family and friends.  Before moving to Dunmow, he and Brenda had lived in The Garth, Great Easton for some 20 years.



A great big thank you goes to all concerned who arranged and participated at the The Duton Hill Senior Citizens’ Christmas Dinner which was held in the club room of The Three Horseshoes on 17th December.  The organisers hosted a trivia quiz, free raffle, with the Duton Hill Billies finale singing Christmas songs accompanied with their ukuleles.  The turkey dinner, with all the trimmings, was cooked to perfection by a local professional chef with flavourful gravy having his special secret ingredient.  The wine donation, paired with the dinner, was much appreciated.   A fantastic time was had by all.


PETER FRANCIS GOODWIN:  It is with much sadness that we record the death of Peter Goodwin of Duton Hill who died on 22nd December, aged 73.  His funeral service took place on 24th January.  We send sincere condolences to his wife, Sue, and son, David in their loss.



Terry Reed writes: With the change in the number of services held within the Five Parishes you should note that there will always be an 11am service at Broxted, and the intention is for this to always be on the second Sunday of the month.  However our February service has been changed to the 16th being the third Sunday in the month, due to Bishop Roger’s visit to Little Easton on 9th February.

It was good to see both old and new faces at our carol service on 8th December.  Revd Tim Goodbody posted on Facebook some pictures of this candle it service.  There was very positive feedback for this traditional Christmas service.  For the first time in many years, Broxted held the Christmas Day service and numbers that attended were disappointing.  However, it was considered a positive move for Broxted.

Snowdrops and daffodils will start to emerge on the banks and in the churchyard soon so, apart from the church services, we hope you will find time to take in the beauty of God’s creation.


Ice on the Road Near Your House?

Local lanes are not gritted by the County Council, but free road salt in 25kg bags is available.  If you would like to be able to treat your patch of road or pavement when the weather turns cold, please contact the clerk, Kate Rixson, on 01371 870711 or to request a delivery.  If there is a grit bin near you, it would be greatly appreciated if you could spread some of the grit on the road nearby.

County Award for Former Chairman Roger Clark

The Council is delighted to announce that Roger, who chaired the Parish Council until May 2019, has been awarded a Chairman Service Award by the Essex Association of Local Councils, against fierce competition.  This award attempts to measure the contribution made to their local communities by the many excellent chairmen of local councils.  It takes account of the chairmen’s involvement in all types of community activities, not just within their local councils.  The three award winners in Essex have been invited to attend a Buckingham Palace Garden Party in recognition of their hard work over many years.  The Council hopes that Roger and Phyllis will have a wonderful day there!

Next Meeting

The Parish Council’s next meeting will be on Thursday 13th February at 8pm in the Village Hall.  Each meeting includes a forum for residents to raise issues with the council, and you are very welcome to attend for the whole (or part) of any meeting.  Local District Councillors often attend.  For agendas and minutes please see


Village Coffee Morning

The next Coffee Morning will be on Wednesday 19th February in the Village Hall from 10am until noon. If you are new to the village, or a life-long resident, this is the ideal occasion to come and meet the neighbours for coffee, cake and chat.


The quizzes for February are on Thursdays 6th and 20th.  You don’t need to book a team, just come along and enjoy the fun.  If you are planning to eat that evening, it is best to book a table.  Call Karen or Terry on 01279 850256.


The hall is kept clean and tidy by a small group of volunteers and a few more people on the rota would make life much easier.  If you could spare an hour or so every six weeks to do a little light cleaning that would be very much appreciated.  Please contact Phyllis Clark, 01279 850638, for more details.


Apologies for the wrong information given in our January issue: it was not until well into January that the Mobile Library Service issued a correction to the published dates.  This service will be at the Prince of Wales on Thursday 6th February, arriving at 10.35am and leaving at 11.05am.


To hire the hall, contact 01279 850638



Pilates Class



The Wednesday Walk

Third Wednesday

10am to 12pm

Village Coffee Morning


MARIE KEANE:  We were very sorry to hear of the death of Marie Keane on 21st December.  Marie moved to Broxted with her late husband Gerry in the 1980s and turned the house known as Church Hall into the renowned Whitehall Hotel.  A friendly and outgoing lady, she was well known for her love of singing, cats and fast cars.  She loved the outdoors and walked every day to indulge her love of the natural world.  Ill health forced her to move to Great Dunmow recently but she was still a regular attender at the Village Coffee Mornings.  She will be greatly missed.



There is no meeting in February.  On the 19th March, the Ven David Lowman’s theme will be The Place of the Arts in our Spiritual Life.


Helpful signposts are to be found at many of our road junctions, a part of our culture and heritage.  Fingerposts that indicate direction and distance from rural junctions are frequently much older and can merit further investigation.  Their arms pointing in several directions, are white with black lettering.  Many local examples, some almost 100 years old, were made of iron in Essex at Maldon Iron Works.  The manufacturer’s name is now usually obscured by many layers of paint.

Some signs at T-junctions have information on the back, albeit hidden from view.  Usually this is the same as the visible side, but not always: the southerly finger of one on the B1051 in Broxted points to Broxted and Bps Stortford, but the back reveals that it has been recycled and once pointed to Wimbish Green.

As you travel along the lanes, please take time for a second look at our humble, ancient fingerposts.



Jo Chamberlain has been appointed as the National Environment Officer for the Church of England, taking forward the strategy developed by the Environment Working Group.  This is a new post reflecting the Archbishops’ Council’s focus on the environment as a theological and mission priority.


The Bible Society has announced that “We’re absolutely thrilled to be working with award-winning garden designer Sarah Eberle, to bring Psalm 23 to life at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show in May 2020!”  The garden will offer visitors the chance “to stop, reflect, and feel refreshed”.


I asked my nephew whether he bought his wife anything for Valentine’s Day, and he said he had bought her a belt and a bag.  When I commented that I am sure she would appreciate them, he agreed:  “Yes, and hopefully the vacuum cleaner will work better now.”

An older man, not in the best physical condition, went along to his local gym.  Carefully dressed in his new exercise clothes, he approached a trainer in the gym. “I want to impress a beautiful young girl as soon as possible.  Which machine should I use?”  The trainer took one look at him and smiled: “I would highly recommend the ATM machine outside!”