VOLUNTEERS NEEDED NOW FOR MARIE CURIE’S GREAT DAFFODIL APPEAL IN SOMERSET AND NORTH DEVON

Marie Curie, the UK’s leading charity for people living with a terminal illness and their families, is urgently calling for volunteers across Somerset and North Devon to give just two hours of their time to hand out the charity’s iconic daffodil pins, in return for donations.

Volunteers will be supporting the Great Daffodil Appeal – Marie Curie’s biggest fundraising campaign, held every March.

In the next 10 years, more than six million people will die in the UK and of this number 75% will need end-of-life care. The money raised from the Great Daffodil Appeal will help Marie Curie nurses provide much-needed expert care to people in Somerset and North Devon with terminal illnesses, as well as support for their loved ones.

Riona Houghton, Marie Curie Community Fundraiser for Somerset and North Devon, said: “Whether you wear a daffodil pin in celebration, in solidarity or in memory of a loved one, you are joining with millions of others to help make sure Marie Curie Nurses can care for more people, as well as providing invaluable support to their families.

“Volunteering just two hours at a local collection is a great way to show your support and help us raise money to help make sure that we can be there for more people at the end of their lives.

“Collecting can be a lot of fun too.  You can do it on your own or with family and friends, and we will support you every step of the way. Volunteering is also an easy way to get involved in your local community and meet new people.”

Peter Bailey from Bideford said: “I collect every year for the Great Daffodil Appeal and it’s a great feeling to be supporting such an important cause. Marie Curie Nurses cared for my wife Christine after she was diagnosed with terminal kidney cancer, the nurses supported all of the family and it meant Christine could die at home with us.

“I’ve now been collecting for over 25 years I’ve met so many kind and interesting people over the years – many of whom have directly benefited from the care provided by Marie Curie Nurses in their own homes.’’

To volunteer for Marie Curie’s Great Daffodil Appeal and give out the charity’s daffodils pins in return for donations, please visit mariecurie.org.uk/collect or contact Riona on Riona.houghton@mariecurie.org.uk or call 0117 9420 429.

HAVE YOUR SAY ON THE ILFRACOMBE SEAFRONT MASTERPLAN

Local residents and businesses are being invited to take part in a public consultation event to comment on a new masterplan for Ilfracombe seafront. The consultation includes a face-to-face event at the Landmark Theatre on Thursday 30 and Friday 31 January and an online survey an online survey – www.northdevon.gov.uk/Ilfracombe-consultation – which runs until 9 March.

As part of Ilfracombe’s Strategic Plan 2015-2025, North Devon Council and the Ilfracombe Regeneration Board have been working together to oversee the process of a new public realm masterplan for Ilfracombe seafront. Consultants Node were appointed to create a masterplan that will enhance the seafront’s natural beauty, draw tourists and local residents to the seafront area of the town and help regenerate the area.

A stakeholder consultation took place last year, during which members from a wide range of Ilfracombe’s community groups were asked to help shape the masterplan in a way that represented the views of Ilfracombe. Now the public are being invited to examine the ideas and share their own in a six week online consultation, which began on Monday 27 January or by attending a face to face event at the Landmark Theatre on Thursday and Friday (30-31 January).

Some of the ideas that are the subject of the Ilfracombe seafront masterplan consultation are:

  • improve accessibility and connections to the High Street and the harbour
  • more seating, shelter, lighting, interpretation and dog bins are needed throughout the seafront area
  • public spaces need a clear function and purpose in order to make the seafront a better experience
  • the wilderness and natural aspects of Capstone Hill should be protected
  • more activities for all ages including young and elderly should be provided
  • play park precedents from Paignton and Minehead should be looked at
  • the museum should be extended or possibly relocated to the old pavilion site
  • a fitness and/or art trail could be incorporated that also includes sculpture and work by local artists
  • an outdoor amphitheatre / stage should be incorporated with three possible locations: Jubilee Gardens / Capstone Hill top / Old Pavilion site

North Devon Council’s Lead Member for Economic Development and Strategic Planning Policy, Councillor Malcolm Prowse, says:  “We have lots of exciting ideas for how we would like Ilfracombe’s seafront to be regenerated in order to improve the health and well-being of all those who live and work in the town – as well enhancing the enjoyment of the tourists who visit it. We now want to hear from our residents about what they’d like to see happening on the seafront, to make sure we have captured the views of those who matter most. I hope the people of Ilfracombe will help us by sharing their views, either by coming to our face to face event in Ilfracombe or taking part in the online consultation.”

Officers from the council’s regeneration team will be available to chat through their ideas at the Landmark Theatre between 10am and 2pm on 30-31 January. Residents who are unable to attend the event can take part by completing an online survey at www.northdevon.gov.uk/Ilfracombe-consultation between 27 January and 9 March.

CALL FOR VOLUNTEERS FOR CONSERVATION DAY IN FREMINGTON NEXT WEEK

Volunteers are being sought to help at a hands-on conservation day in Fremington next week.

The Practical Conservation Day will take place at the Fremington Local Nature Reserve on Sunday 26 January from 10am.

At this  event, run by local wildlife experts in conjunction with North Devon Council, North Devon Biosphere and Fremington Parish Council, volunteers will have the opportunity to help with  conservation tasks such as clearing the blackthorn scrub and managing the wildflower meadow.

Leader of North Devon Council, Councillor David Worden, says: “This is a great example of how our communities can come together to improve their local area. It’s a free event that is open to all ages, and will give volunteers the opportunity to help their local wildlife whilst meeting new people and getting active in an outdoor environment. There is no need to book, just come along on the day and help out as much as you are able to.”

Local ward member for Fremington, Councillor Frank Biederman, says, “This is a wonderful activity for people of all ages to get involved in, or even do together as a family, and I would really encourage people to take part.”

Local ward member for Fremington, Councillor Jayne Mackie, says, “This is a chance for local people to take an active role in the development of their own natural environment. Here we have an ideal learning opportunity for all ages, so please come along to join in with the activities and then take your new skills and ideas back with you to use at home or elsewhere within the community.”

Anyone wishing to take part in this nature conservation work is asked to meet at the entrance to Griggs Field, off Beechfield Road, bring a drink and a packed lunch, wear clothing appropriate for the weather and sturdy footwear suitable for uneven ground.

Parking for the event is available at Beechfield Road car park.

MUSEUM OF BARNSTAPLE AND NORTH DEVON DOCUMENTARY PHOTOGRAPHY COMPETITION

Are you a budding amateur photographer, seasoned professional or passionate local photography group?

The Museum of Barnstaple and North Devon is excited to announce the launch of a brand-new ‘Documentary Photography Open’ to be held annually between February and April.

The theme for this year is The High Street, focusing on the transformation of North Devon’s local shop fronts and businesses and how they have evolved, particularly in recent times of austerity. Photographers can include proprietors, but the primary focus is to be on documenting the shop and its architecture.

The exhibition is free to enter and will provide a platform for anyone from amateur through to established contemporary photographer looking to improve their exposure, enhance their practice and help document North Devon.

The successful applicants will feature in the exhibition, held in the community gallery, showcasing contemporary photography from across North Devon. Selected exhibition images will gain further exposure online as part of the museum’s digital marketing through their website, social media and mailing lists.

Museum Curator, Alison Mills, says, “With over 55,000 people visiting the museum every year, our aim is to offer a platform to showcase the work of talented local photographers.  We also want to help promote and inspire future documentary photography. The idea is that each year the competition will see a different theme drawing on the museum’s inspirational photography collections that include R.L. Knight and James Ravilious.”

Leader of North Devon Council, Councillor David Worden, says: “This new photography competition is another fantastic idea by the team at the museum, not only as a way of bringing the talent of local photographers to the attention of all the museum visitors, but also as a way of documenting North Devon as it is now and preserving the images for future generations.”

During the exhibition’s duration a public vote will be held within the community gallery and the image with the most votes by the closing date of the exhibition will be awarded with a winner’s certificate, and a £200 voucher from event sponsors J&A Cameras, to help further the photographer’s practice.  One standout piece from the exhibition will be selected by the museum team to enter into the museum’s digital archive, continuing to help to document North Devon and its people.

Applications can be picked up from the museum reception, or to download a form and a copy of the submission guidelines and terms and conditions, visit the museum’s website.

TOP: Appledore News photographed by James Ravilious © Beaford Arts.

The 24th Westcountry Equine Fair continues showcasing ‘The Best of the West’ this year with a fantastic array of masterclasses, competitive events and training methods from people in the West of England. The West Country has some amazing equestrian stars and they will be celebrated at their local event.

The annual Westcountry Equine Fair takes place at Westpoint, Exeter on Saturday 7 and Sunday and 8 December 2019 and this year will feature showjumper Andrew Williams; dressage rider Louise Hutchinson; Western Riding and The Parelli Instructor Team SW UK. There will be the ever-popular competitive events including the Horse & Hound Pony Club Challenge (sponsored by Stags) and the junior showjumping competition (sponsored by Redpost Equestrian) – a great opportunity for young riders to perform in front of a large crowd in the indoor arena. Also back by popular demand and in its third year is the unaffiliated Quadrille competition, a perfect opportunity to see some great riding skills and colourful costumes.

With a breed village and heavy horse area plus the BETA Equestrian Knowledge Zone – featuring Robocob the mechanical horse, free hat and body protector checks and plentiful advice from top experts, there is something for everyone.

The show is not complete without the amazing equestrian shopping village. Stay stylish with the latest fashions; keep up to date with new products and excellent advice and of course plenty of the main brands, show offers, competitions and book signings. With over 200 companies, this is a great equestrian shopping experience for the horse and for the rider. Don’t forget you don’t need to carry those heavy shopping bags around with the shop and drop facility in the foyer – all donations to Brooke animal charity.

Join the West Country’s equine community for a weekend of equestrian celebration!

To book your tickets in advance and save money visit www.westcountryequinefair.co.uk and follow the event on Facebook and Twitter to stay updated.

KINGSLEY SCHOOLS CLIMATE CHANGE TEACHER ACCREDITED BY UNITED NATIONS

Steve Whaley, Head of Geography at Kingsley School Bideford, has become one of the first teachers in the UK to be a UN accredited Climate Change Teacher.

Mr Steve Whaley has been working hard to become an eduCCate Global Climate Change Teacher, accredited by UN CC:Learn. Mr Whaley can now deliver world-class climate change lessons to all pupils at Kingsley School and, through lesson observations and staff training, plans to share information and best practice with all teaching staff, so they too can take part in this new initiative. He will also continue to deliver climate change education through the geography lessons and his many extra-curricular activities.

Steve says, “As a keen environmentalist I was delighted to get the opportunity to deepen my knowledge and understanding of climate change. Achieving the United Nations accreditation was a challenging process of many different learning mediums and formal assessments but ultimately has left me far more informed and able to educate the students in my care.

“The timing is spot on, with climate change being at the fore of current affairs and with the launch of the Earth Centre at Kingsley.

“For the next century to be a success for humankind, environmental sustainability needs to be at the core of everything we do.  Our earth is creaking, and the big question: ‘Can the planet support and enable a population of 10 billion people to live contented and flourishing lives?’ remains unanswered. Being an accredited UN Climate Change Teacher and the launch of the new of the Earth Centre puts environmental sustainability at the heart of school life here at
Kingsley: increasing awareness, asking the right questions and developing the future leaders and practitioners for the future.“

Steve Whaley continued: “Climate change has been in the curriculum for years. The information I learnt on the course is astonishing and we really need to provide our students with the up-to-the-minute knowledge on climate change so we can empower them to make the decisions that can make a difference.”

The UN Climate Change Teacher Academy is being delivered by Harwood Education, in partnership with the One United Nations Climate Change Learning Partnership (UN CC:Learn). Teachers will be able to teach pupils vital lessons about climate change and earn certification from the United Nations.

INAUGURAL EXHIBITION AT MUSEUM OF BARNSTAPLE AND NORTH DEVON’S NEW WING

The Museum of Barnstaple and North Devon has opened the inaugural exhibition of its new wing.

The exhibition, named ‘Imitation of Nature’ is being held in the main gallery and showcases the paintings of F.R. Lee, the most successful artist to ever come from Barnstaple. Born in 1798, he graduated from the Royal Academy of Arts, later becoming elected member in 1838. He is a contemporary of John Constable and collaborated with Sir Edwin Landseer and Thomas Sydney Cooper.

Musuem curator, Alison Mills, says: “The new wing has been installed with the latest technology to atmospherically control the gallery at exactly the right temperature, humidity, lighting, etc. This new system means we are now able to have objects on loan from other galleries for the first time, which is very exciting for us.

“For this exhibition we have worked hard to bring together over 30 of Lee’s paintings both from private lenders and museums including Tate Gallery, Victoria & Albert Museum, Royal Albert Memorial Museum, Royal Academy of Arts, Russell-Cotes Art Gallery and Museum, South West Heritage Trust, The Amelia at the Amelia Scott and North Devon Athenaeum, alongside our own collection.”

There are two events planned in conjunction with the exhibition:

  • 5 December, 5.30-6.30pm: “F.R. Lee: His Place in History” – a free talk given by Professor Sam Smiles and Professor Peter Howard
  • 21 November, 10am-3pm: Landscape drawing workshop for adults led by artist James Young, costing £15 (materials included)

Spaces for both the talk and workshop are limited, so please contact the museum on 01271 346747 to book your place.

The exhibition runs until 18 January 2020.

Top: ‘View from the River’.

ROSEMOOR GLOW 2019

The winter at the Royal Horticultural Society’s (RHS) Garden Rosemoor in Devon is always a treat and is one of the most beautiful sights in all seasons. This year, visitors can see the garden illuminated by innovative and dynamic colour-changing lighting to provide a magical festive trail around the trees, shrubs, water features and sculptures, along a new route which will this year include the Cool Garden for the first time with its rippling water rills and once again extended to The Lake.

On Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays between now and 4 January (excl. 26 December) the gardens will be open until 8pm to maximise the effects of the lighting into the evening hours, and on those days, normal garden entry includes Glow (free for RHS members) so you can enjoy a full day out seeing the gardens and sculptures by day and then also by night.

The award-winning Garden Kitchen Restaurant will be serving  delicious simple family suppers 5-7pm, (booking is highly recommended to avoid disappointment). Take advantage of late-night shopping as the Rosemoor Shop & Plant Centre will remain open until 8pm too on these nights and will be the place to go for all those Christmas Gift and plant ideas.

Other events taking place:

Rosemoor’s extremely popular annual Winter Sculpture Exhibition will also be up and running from 14 November to 31 January. Last year, over 50,000 visitors enjoyed the eclectic mix of exhibits that are set against the backdrop of the garden. This year, the exhibition has been freshened up with a high proportion of new artists. Most of the sculptures featured in the exhibition are for sale.

To make the most of a visit to Rosemoor there is also a special Winter Wonders Garden Trail which includes many specimens from our national collection of hollies and featuring key highlighted plants and shrubs around the garden.

22-24 November
Christmas Design for Living Fair
The Garden Room will be full of the South West’s best craftspeople making it the ideal place to snap up an early Christmas present or two. Combining with Rosemoor Glow Friday & Saturday it will be open late 11am-7pm making it feel like a proper Christmas Market, whilst on Sunday it is open 10am-4pm when you can take advantage of Rosemoor’s delicious carvery.

14 and 15 December
Magic of Christmas Food & Craft Fair
A magical fair full of temptation and delights, from a mixture of artisan food and craft stalls. Combining with Rosemoor Glow, on the Saturday it will be open late 11am-7pm, making it feel like another wonderful Christmas Market, whilst on Sunday it is open 10am-4pm when you can take advantage of Rosemoor’s renowned Exmoor beef carvery.

8, 15, 18 and 22 December
Christmas Lunches
The Garden Kitchen restaurant will be serving delicious Christmas Carvery lunches between 12-3pm (Sundays), 12-2.30pm (Wednesday).

20-23 December
Father Christmas and his elves family experience (ticketed event)
There is of course only one real Father Christmas! This year, before he heads out on his sleigh, he will be here at RHS Garden Rosemoor to entertain your family with a festive storytelling session in his magical workshop theatre. He’ll be joined by his elves who will teach children Santa’s favourite Christmas song and help them to make a beautiful decoration for their Christmas Tree. Your family will have the opportunity to meet some of Santa’s Reindeer and of course, each family will get the chance to meet the big man himself.

Don’t forget to bring your camera to capture the memory. Online booking is essential to avoid disappointment. On 20 and 21 December, why not combine your visit with the Glow event for a wonderful family day out.

Every visit supports the charitable work of the RHS. For more information on events Rosemoor visit www.rhs.org.uk/rosemoor Normal garden admission applies (free for RHS members). Garden open every day (except Christmas Day) 10am-5pm.

EXMOOR SOCIETY PHOTOGRAPHIC COMPETITION WINNERS

The winners of the prestigious Alfred Vowles Photographic Competition were announced recently by The Exmoor Society.  There were four categories: Landscape, Exmoor Activities, Heritage Buildings and Wildlife, with a prize of £50 awarded to the winner of each category and the overall winner also receiving the Alfred Vowles trophy.

“The judges were impressed by the quality and wide range of subject matter in the four categories,” said Jill Edwards, Trustee of The Exmoor Society. “They admitted that choosing winners was a difficult task, particularly in the Landscape category, which has a large number of entries.  The care and attention which the photographers had given to their work is to be applauded.”

Leanna Coles, whose ‘Seat with a View’ looking towards Cloutsham and beyond was both the overall winner and winner of the Landscape category (pictured, top),  was praised for capturing a particularly vibrant Exmoor landscape with excellent lighting and detail, and a wonderful sky.  She also won the Wildlife category with her ‘Tippbarlake Exmoor pony herd gathering on Brendon Common’: a spectacular image of this iconic Exmoor event.

Also to be congratulated is Madeline Taylor who won both the Exmoor Activities and the Heritage Buildings categories with her photographs of the Allerford Forge and of the gated entrance to the Worthy Combe toll road; two images that capture the spirit and history of the National Park. Her ‘Having a “splashing” good time in Horner Water’ in the former category was Highly Commended.

In the Landscape category, Madeline Taylor’s ‘A Walk along the River at Watersmeet’ was Highly Commended and Sharon Bailey’s ‘Looking towards Twitchen’ and ‘Valley of Rocks’ was Commended. All these show the beauty and variety of Exmoor’s landscape.  In the Wildlife category Tricia Gibson’s ‘Exmoor pony, Persica, and her six-day old foal’ and ‘Tawbits Lorna Doone with her new born filly foal’ were Highly Commended for their good composition and sensitivity.  Highly Commended also, in the Heritage Buildings category, was Patrick Hoyte’s evocative black-and-white photograph of ‘The Stables at Dunster Castle’.

Alfred Vowles was a well-known photographer at the beginning of the twentieth century.  Rachel Thomas, Chairman of the Society, said, “The Vowles’ family kindly donated the trophy to The Exmoor Society in Alfred’s memory, in order to help inspire future generations to capture the essence of Exmoor and its special qualities through photography.”

The winning photographs will be on display at the Society’s headquarters at 34 High Street, Dulverton, and on its website www.exmoorsociety.com

KLEZWEST! LONDON KLEZMER QUARTET

The London Klezmer Quartet are celebrating ten years of traditional European folk music and invite you to join them at Halsway Manor, National Centre for Folk Arts, to delve deeply into the world of freylekhs, bulgars, zhoks, khosidls and terkishers – the dance music repertoire of Eastern Europe! The event takes place at Halsway on Saturday 30 November at 8pm.

Klezmer is the celebratory and soulful music of Eastern European Jews, played for weddings, parties, and celebrations. It is exuberant, passionate and can take you from toe tapping to tears and back again. The London Klezmer Quartet, are leading lights in this style of music, playing with compelling virtuosity.

Musicians can join them for a whole weekend of workshops to learn this style of music – be quick though, this course is nearly sold out – or  help them celebrate their anniversary gig at Halsway Manor on Saturday 30 November.

Tickets for the concert cost £12. Buy securely online at www.halswaymanor.org.uk.

0345 224 1203