Didcot U3A

The University of the Third Age offers the opportunity to share your knowledge, experience and talents with others and to learn from them in friendly surroundings. We have 31 Interest Groups, ranging from, Art Appreciation, Family History, Languages (various), Photography, Science & Technology, Ukulele to Wine Appreciation!

The Didcot & District U3A meets on the third Tuesday of the month in the Civic Hall, at the next meeting on 20th June, John Caldicott will talk on ‘The Foundling Hospital – the children who were taken in’.

The monthly meetings always commence at 2pm, it advisable to arrive 15 minutes before the start, there are always members of the Committee on hand to act as Meeters & Greeters to make any newcomers most welcome.
For more information call: 01235 510048 or 01235 815384, email gro.a3utocdidnull@yraterces or visit www.u3asites.org.uk/didcot

Advance Notice of Upton Village Fete

The fete this year will be held on Saturday, 2 September starting at 2.00 on the recreation ground. So keep the date free – it will be well worth it!

For the first time the fete will be a joint effort between St Mary’s Church and UVHAT – the Upton Village Hall Amenities Trust. The organising committee has already been very busy and we’re pleased to announce some exciting new ideas – donkeys, a cartoonist, a car boot sale and a bake-off competition to name but a few. And we won’t forget the old favourites – the teas, the book stall, white elephant, a barbeque and many others.

Entertainments will include a dog show, gymnasts, Blewbury Brass Band and the children’s entertainer, Juggling John, who proved to be such a hit last year. And we would welcome other ideas too – please contact a member of the committee if you have any suggestions.

We are aiming to raise at least £4,000 to be split between UVHAT and St Mary’s so we look forward to seeing as many as possible at one of the highlights of Upton village life in September.

Look out for more news next month!

Upton Village Fete Committee: Gloria Smith, Jacqui Reid, Jessie West, Brian Rippon and Paul Batho

Earth Trust Events During June

All events take place at the Earth Trust, Little Wittenham, OX14 4QZ unless otherwise stated.

Little Explorers – Thursday 1st June, 10am-11.30am

Sensory buggy/sling walk for babies and toddlers. We will use our senses to learn about the natural world around us – stopping to smell, touch, taste, listen and look! £4 suggested donation per child; accompanying adult(s) free.

Discover and Play – Friday 2nd June, 10am-12pm

Forest School fun for the under-5s. Join us for a morning of play and discovery in our woodlands. £4 suggested donation per child, accompanying adult(s) free.

Sunday Drop-in: Forest School Fun – Sunday 4th June, 10am-2pm

Come and explore the woods and get creative in the great outdoors. £4 suggested donation per child, accompanying adult(s) free.

Natural Dyeing – Sunday 11th June, 10am-4pm

Discover the wide range of plants that can produce dye and learn how to extract and fix the colour. £40; booking essential: 01865 407792 or online at www.earthtrust.org.uk/whatson (incurs a booking fee).

Bats of the Clumps – Friday 16th June, 7pm-8.30pm

Take a peek into the mysterious world of these amazing animals… Meet some bats and enjoy an informative talk by Dave Endacott from Oxfordshire Bat Group. £8 per adult, £4 per child; booking essential: 01865 407792 or online at www.earthtrust.org.uk/whatson (incurs a booking fee).

Beginners Wildlife Photography – Saturday 17th June, 10am-3pm

Professional photographer Andrew Walmsley will help you get to grips with your camera and provide guidance on capturing images of wildlife. There are a series of workshops running throughout the next few months – book one or more as a course: first workshop £80, subsequent workshops 15% off. Booking essential: 01865 407792 or online at www.earthtrust.org.uk/whatson (incurs a booking fee).

Intermediate Wildlife Photography – Sunday 18th June, 10am-3pm

In each of these workshops professional photographer Andrew Walmsley will cover a different aspect of photography so you can build up a more in-depth knowledge. This workshop will cover cataloguing and pressing. Book one or more as a course for a discount: first workshop £80, subsequent workshops 15% off. Booking essential: 01865 407792 or online at www.earthtrust.org.uk/whatson (incurs a booking fee).

As always, more information can be found on our website www.earthtrust.org.uk.

Film Club’s Next Movie

Sully: Miracle on the Hudson (The story of Chesley Sullenberger, who became a hero after gliding his plane along the water in the Hudson River, saving all of his 155 passengers) has been chosen to be your next movie – showing on Friday June 9th

The movie will start at 8 o’clock

There will be an intermission approximately halfway through.

Drinks will also be available before and after the showing.

Place the date in your diary – £5.00.

Doors open at 7:15 so why not come along early for a drink and a chat and to celebrate or

commiserate the end of the election campaign.

Rob Traynor

May Events at Earth Trust

Earth Trust have arranged the following events to take place during May:

Moth Night on Saturday 6th May, 8pm-10pm

Uncover the wonderful world of moths during an evening of moth trapping. £6 per adult, £3 per child; booking essential: 01865 407792 or online at www.earthtrust.org.uk/whatson (incurs a booking fee).

Dawn Chorus Walk on Sunday 7th May, 4.30am-6.30am

Join us on the Clumps to hear the dawn birdsong. £6 per adult, £3 per child; booking essential: 01865 407792 or online at www.earthtrust.org.uk/whatson (incurs a booking fee).

Sunday Drop-in: Go Wild! on Sunday 7th May, 10am-2pm

Discover what wildlife lives on the nature reserve, including looking at what’s been caught in the moth traps that were set up at yesterday’s Moth Night. £4 suggested donation per child, accompanying adult(s) free.

Green Woodworking Course on Tuesday 9th May, 6.30pm-9pm

A 6 week course (Tuesday evenings 9th May-13th June) where you’ll make your own stool to take home. £75 for 6 sessions; booking essential: 01865 407792 or online at www.earthtrust.org.uk/whatson (incurs a booking fee).

Tree Climbing on Saturday 13th May, 10am-5pm

Use ropes and harnesses to access the treetops! 1hr sessions with The Great Big Tree Climbing Company. £20; booking essential: online only at www.earthtrust.org.uk/whatson (incurs a booking fee).

Scything on Sunday 14th May, 9.30am-4pm

Learn the traditional way to tackle tall grass and long weeds, with expert Clive Leeke. £50; booking essential: 01865 407792 or online at www.earthtrust.org.uk/whatson (incurs a booking fee).

Intermediate Wildlife Photography on Sunday 14th May, 10am-3pm

In each of these workshops professional photographer Andrew Walmsley will cover a different aspect of photography so you can build up a more in-depth knowledge. This workshop will cover wide angle tricks. Future intermediate workshops: 18th June; book one or more as a course: first workshop £80, subsequent workshops 15% off. Booking essential: 01865 407792 or online at www.earthtrust.org.uk/whatson (incurs a booking fee).

Bat Walk on Saturday 20th May, 8.30pm-10pm

A guided walk with the addition of bat detectors to find out more about these marvellous mammals. £6 per adult, £3 per child; booking essential: 01865 407792 or online at www.earthtrust.org.uk/whatson (incurs a booking fee).

Drawing from Nature on Sunday 21st May, 2pm-4pm

Explore Little Wittenham Wood with your sketchbook and get top tips from artist Gareth Lloyd. £20; booking essential: 01865 407792 or online at www.earthtrust.org.uk/whatson (incurs a booking fee).

Natural Dyeing for Families on Tuesday 30th May, 11am-4pm

Forage for natural dyes to colour wool, then make colourful felt. Suitable for ages 10 years+, £20 per adult, £15 per child; booking essential: 01865 407792 or online at www.earthtrust.org.uk/whatson (incurs a booking fee).

Woodland Adventure on Wednesday 31st May, 10am-12pm

An expedition for 5-8 year olds. Use your detective skills to explore, build and play in the woods! £4 suggested donation per child, accompanying adult(s) free.

Wildlife Wednesday at Thrupp Lake on Wednesday 31st May, 2pm-4pm

Our roving Wildlife Wednesday visits a different Earth Trust community nature reserve each school holiday. Come out and play and learn about your local wildlife!

All events take place at the Earth Trust, Little Wittenham, OX14 4QZ unless otherwise stated. More information can be found on our website www.earthtrust.org.uk.

 

Update from Blewbury Post Office

We are collecting the last “Active Kids” vouchers from Sainsburys’, for Karens girly guides, please bring them in!

We will be closed on both Monday 1st May & Monday 29th May, for the Bank Holidays, allowances paid on those days will be paid early, usually the Friday before.

Some Bank cash deposits can now be made using your debit card! (Cheques in the envelope as usual). Almost all Bank and most Building Society accounts are online with us – Barclays definitely works!

We have some beautiful British Bird stamps coming out in early May.

Karen & Angela

Bake Up Enjoy the Tarts

There was a fine turnout for the second Upton baking social in March. The theme was ‘tarts’ and we tasted a panoply of pastry-based goodies, both savoury and sweet.
A humdinger of a pissaladiere took centre stage, and other onion fillings proved popular in the savoury section. Spanakopita and cheese and tomato slice were also devoured with gusto.
In the sweet department we had lemon curd tarts, rhubarb and almond, apple slice and Swedish nut pie.
One audacious recipe dispensed with pastry altogether and used bacon for a base with an egg, bacon and cheese filling. Breakfast in a bite!
If you have a yen to bake (not competitively) the next meet-up is on Friday May 12 at 11am at Fieldfare near the church.
The theme is quite simply ‘cake’. Do come along and don’t forget some Tupperware for the divvy up.

Kieron Humphrey

Blewbury Post Office News

Royal Mail has put their postage rates up from Monday 27th March, 1p on first and second (standard size) and 2p on first class large letter, 1p on second class large letter. Everything else goes up too, including parcels, but customers can now see when their parcel has been delivered (for free) by going to www.royalmail.com/confirm  The postie will scan the 2D icon on the parcel as he/she delivers it, (hopefully!). Royal Mail have also introduced a new 3rd class stamp, cost 35p, with a delivery aim of anything up to 3 weeks, but are only on sale 1/4/17, and are valid all year.

David Bowie special stamps are on sale at the moment, with iconic racehorses on sale later in April.

We are collecting the “Active Kids” vouchers available in Sainsbury’s, for Karen’s girly guides, so if you have a few and don’t know anyone who is collecting them, please bring them in!

We will be closed on Good Friday and Easter Monday; allowances paid on those days will be paid early, usually the working day before. We are open on the Saturday morning. Anyone who needs emergency top up of gas or electric during the days we are closed can ring my mobile 07825154842 and I will pop round to the PO.

Karen and Angela

£5 swim offer for Upton residents age 60 plus

If you are age 60 and over, living outside a market town, then make use of this great Spring swim offer to try out a leisure pool near you.

Most residents living in South Oxfordshire and Vale of White Horse can reach a pool within about 20 minute drive time, but taking that first step to try out swimming can be hard. To make it easier, GO Active Gold, in partnership with Better Leisure Centres, are offering unlimited swimming for £5 during April 2017 to residents age 60 plus living in rural villages.

GO Active Gold is a Sport England funded project, encouraging people living in rural areas age 60 and over to become more active by setting up activities local to them.

Research shows that as you get older, you’re far more likely to become inactive: 42 per cent of people aged 55 and over are inactive compared to 29 per cent of the population as a whole.

Swimming is an ideal workout for the elderly, mainly because it presents little risk of injury and is low impact. Swimming also develops strong and stable core muscles, which are necessary for good balance control — a major protective factor against falls.

Make sure you don’t miss out on this offer by registering your place before Saturday 1 April 2017, just call 01235 422226 or complete the online registration form on our website:www.getoxfordshireactive.org/go-active-gold.

Once you have registered, visit your local leisure pool during April.  Your one month swim offer will start from the date of your first swim.

South Oxfordshire District – Participating pools include

•           Thame Leisure Centre

•           Henley Leisure Centre

•           Abbey Sports Centre

•           Didcot Wave

Vale of White Horse District – Participating pools includ

•           Wantage Leisure Centre

•           Faringdon Leisure Centre

•           White Horse Leisure Centre

Village Litter Pick

Volunteers are needed for the annual Village Litter Pick which will take place on Saturday 25th March, meeting at the Village Hall at 9.30.

Hi viz vests, litter-sticks and refuse sacks will be made available but we cannot manage this task without volunteers and the more we have the more litter we can clean up.

It is amazing just how much litter accumulates around our roads and footpaths and how much better the village looks when it has been removed.

Thank you

Rob Traynor