|Extracts from Parish Magazine for November, 2003||
Click to enlarge
The recent heavy showers are bringing much needed rainfall to the Pit. It has kept at a reasonably good level despite the warm hot summer, but is dependent on a regular fall of rain to keep a good balance. August is normally one of the wettest months of the year, and usually compensates for the evaporation of water through the sun. So this year has been a worrying one, but the Pit still looks in remarkably good condition, although some work will soon have to be done, to remove excess amounts of amphibious bistort, a colourful flowering plant, which is growing very thickly on and below the surface.
Our swans, now on the canal are clearly on the move. As I write three cygnets have been practising flying outside my window, and last week I found the pen down on the canal at Cow Lane Bridge with one of her cygnets, no doubt trying to get it to fly off. Another has also flown, but as they have not been ringed this year I will not be able to trace their movements. Incidentally one of last years young was recently seen at The Wildfowl Trust at Slimbridge in Gloucestershire.
I have had several recent reports of large birds of prey in the sky above the village, and whilst I have written frequently in these notes about buzzards, these birds have been distinctly different. One was almost certainly a Goshawk, a large bird of prey with a great deal of white around its underside with pointed wings, seen on at least two occasions, a bird which is now believed to be nesting again in nearby Delamere Forest, and the other a red kite. Red Kites are really magnificent birds, making a great come back in Mid Wales, and have now been released in several parts of the UK. The best known place, being a chalk cutting in the Chilterns, on the M40 between Oxford and High Wycombe. There these beautiful birds can be seen wheeling around the skies very close to the traffic. Their V shaped red tails are the best clue to identification. Incidentally if anyone is travelling near Rhayader in Mid Wales, I recommend that you spend an hour or so at Cigrin Farm, just south of the town, where the farmer now earns his living by providing a habitat, and feeding station for the red kite, as well as providing nature trails around the farm. Here diversification for the farmer, means the survival of the red kite and during winter months, at around 2.00pm, between 60 and 80 kites can be seen feeding close at hand, from purpose built hides. The red kites, are also joined by buzzards, ravens, rooks, kestrels and other birds, making it a truly wonderful spectacle.
Is this the most unusual wildlife sighting ever seen in Christleton!.
At 11.15am on Tuesday October 7th, whilst driving towards Chester along Whitchurch Road, Beryl & I couldnt believe our eyes when we saw a large dinosaur, probably Tyranasaurus Rex moving at great speed in the opposite direction, and I promise we hadnt been drinking. Well Ok it was on the back of a lorry, but its the first time weve ever seen a dinosaur in the village.
Thank you from Cliff Boddys Family
Clifford & Hyldred and families, wish to thank everyone who contributed to the beautiful flagons in memory of their father. The fact that they will be in use at every communion service gives them great pleasure, and that through this use, Cliffs memory will always be close to the parishioners at St James.
Church Rambling Group.
Sunday 16th November. Meet at 1.30pm in the Church Car Park.
Autumn Ramble in Delamere Forest. Looking at the ecology of the forest and viewing the new Mersey Forest, with wonderful views of the Cheshire Countryside(weather permitting) from the top of Eddisbury Hill.
Leader David Cummings
Christleton Local History Group.
7.30pm on Wednesday 26th November at The Primary School in Quarry Lane.
Speaker. Judy Smith.
(Judy, a member of the group, is a working historian and has recently helped to make a film on the life and work of Thomas Telford.)
A delightful new Christmas Card depicting the new Millennium Window is now available, and describes the story of the window on the reverse side. It has a simple greeting inside and will cost £3 for packs of 10 cards. These are now available from myself or from church. There are also a small number, of last years card of the church in the snow, available at the same price. The proceeds from the sale of these cards goes towards the Church Christmas Charities.
I have also had reprinted the letter cards of the swans on Christleton Pit to raise funds for the Hospice of the Good Shepherd, and these are also now available. Price £1.50 for 5 cards.
A journey back in time
Last week Beryl and I had the privilege of taking a holiday in The Bay of Naples, based on the town of Sorrento. From there we were bussed each day to a historic site. Accompanied by a local guide and experienced archaeologist, we explored the ancient city of Paestum, a huge Greek City State on the mainland of Italy at a time before the Romans. There we saw three large temples each almost the size of the Parthenon in Athens, the agora a huge meeting place with shops, and a circular building said to the beginnings of democracy, where ordinary folk going about their business in the city were roped in to make decisions democratically on behalf of all. There was also a large outdoor swimming pool in addition to the usual Indoor facilities of such cities.
We visited the Roman cities of Pompei & Herculaneum destroyed by the volcanic explosion of Vesuvius in AD79. Here it was possible to see not only the effects of the human catastrophe, but to see glimpses of life, through the buildings that existed at the time of Jesus and his disciples. There were beautifully decorated frescos on the walls, wonderful mosaics on the floors, and we saw aspects of the way of life of people both rich and poor. We saw the bakers shop, with its bread oven very like a pizza oven of today, an outdoor restaurant serving hot food and wine, complete with bar to sit at.
The grooves made by cart wheels as they made their way through the streets were also very evident, as were the early forms of sanitation and sewerage systems. We think we are very sophisticated, but the standard of living of these people, with hot and running cold water, sanitation, wonderful bath houses, and eating places, was really quite remarkable. However it was very poignant to see the bodies of the victims of the volcano, lying where they were found, caught by the ash, or pyroclastic flow, whilst trying to escape from this devastation. They can be seen curled up into a ball, with hands over their mouths trying to stop the hot gases from choking them. In one case the casts of a family of seven can be seen lying together, close to the city boundary trying to reach the sea, and safety.
Many people did survive the ash at Pompei, some seven miles south of the volcano, because it took three days to fall from the sky, and steadily build up to cover the streets, whilst others were found with their savings and treasures in their pockets or in boxes as they tried to flee from the site. However at Herclaneum almost four miles west of the explosion there was no escape, as the magma, pyroclastic mud and earth, flowed from the slopes of the volcano and over this city, very quickly. The damage here was great, but as the site has been found relatively recently, more of the treasures have been preserved, and modern methods of archaeology ensure that we now see some superb examples of the past. Wood for example was preserved by the mud flow, so that wooden joists, stairs, sliding doors and even beds survive in situ. This city also had the first drains and a wonderful bath house the envy of all the other inhabitants of the City of Naples.
To be continued.
Restoration Fund Events.
Saturday 1st November. 7.00pm in the Parish Hall.
Buffet Supper & Talk with slides.
The City of Athens & the Greek Islands of Samos and Ikaria,
Natures Wild Gardens
Tickets £6, including Buffte Supper & Glass of Wine.
Please book in advance. Tickets from David & Beryl 332410
October 2003 Report
Because of the wonderfully interesting stories told by some of our members about their experiences during the Second World War, we have decided to take a coach trip to see the exhibition in the Albert Dock in Liverpool about What We Did in the War. We are going on Monday 10th November instead of having our usual meeting in the Parish Hall and will be joined by members of St Pauls, Helsby Mothers Union.
2003 COMMUNITY PRIDE COMPETITION
BEST KEPT VILLAGE AWARD
Jim Partington and I were extremely proud to receive, on behalf of Christleton Parish Council, not only the Best Kept Village Award for Villages with a population of 1000-2500, but also the Championship Award, which is given to the overall winner in the Competition.
We were presented with a beautiful painting by Gordon Wilkinson of Christleton village, which was sponsored by Cheshire Life.
We would like to say a very big thank you to everyone who has worked so hard to keep Christleton looking so lovely, especially David Goulbourne, who now, sadly for us, has gone to live in Lincolnshire. The judges remarks and their markings in all areas were either excellent or very good and we gained a total of 212 marks out of a possible 220 (96%).
MOTHERS UNION TRIP
“Tell me…” said the owner softly, “have you so much gold to spare?
No-one moved when he departed… you’d have heard a feather fall,
Stamp out leprosy!
Please donate your used stamps so that money can be raised for Leprosy Mission. Stamps should be trimmed to quarter inch border around the stamp, and can be left at the back of Church.
PLEASE TELL US
If you know of any special birthdays, anniversaries or anyone celebrating a special occasion, who is a Parish Magazine reader, please inform the editor, David Bull.
AVAILABLE AT ST JAMES CHURCH:
Loop system, for the hearing impaired
Large print books for the visually impaired & large print weekly notice sheets
Easy to follow Communion Service Books for children
Access for wheelchairs
Please ask any of the Churchwardens or Sidesmen if you need assistance in any way.
NATIONAL CHILDBIRTH TRUST (N.C.T.) OPEN HOUSE GROUP:
Informal coffee mornings are held locally offering support to mums-to-be and families with young children (whether members or not) in a friendly, informal way. Please contact your local organiser Debbie Tel. 332103 for further details.
Christleton Local History Group
Books for Sale
Christleton 2000 years of History.
136 pages of text, fully illustrated with b&w photographs, maps & drawings,
and including 8 pages of colour photographs. Laminated cover with water-colour
painting of the Church & Pump House by Phil Hodges.
£12.50 & (£2.75 postage & packing.) Free delivery locally.
Christleton Village Trail
A self guided tour of the Village in aid of the "Well for Africa" Appeal.
£2.50. (+30p postage& packing))
From David Cummings, 25 Croft Close, Rowton, Chester CH3 7QQ
or from Christleton Post Office.
CHRISTLETON UNDER-FIVES COMMUNITY PLAYGROUP
Registered charity 1022817
Christleton Under-Fives is an established pre-school playgroup attracting children from a wide area. It enjoys good and well-founded links with Christleton Primary School.
Children from the age of 2_ years until school entry age are accepted.
Please contact the Supervisor, Carole Penney, on 336586 for further details.
Mobile Library Van Service
The van calls fortnightly: for details of when the van is next in your area, please telephone Upton Library on 380053.
Please remember to support our magazine advertisers and mention where you have read their name.