Scrapbook For The Rotary Year July 2021 to June 2022
11th July - Monthly Walk
Our walk of just under four miles long, started and finished at the Red Cow in the village of Chrishall. Chrishall Common at 482 feet is the highest point in Essex. Recorded in the 1086 Domesday Book in the hundred of Uttlesford with 58 households and 8 slaves, Chrishall in size is in the top 20% of settlements in England. It has not changed a lot in almost a thousand years. The land at that time was assigned to Count Eustace of Boulogne by William the Conqueror for his support in the battle of Hastings.
27th July - Presidential Handover
ThiseventwasthefirsttimeinsomesixteenmonthssincetheRoystonRotarianshadbeenabletomeettogethersocially.Thirtysix membersandguestsmetattheGardenRoomatChilfordHallnearLintonat6.30pm.Theeventhadbeendelayedduetothe GovernmentcovidrestrictionsanddespitethefactthattheeventcouldatlastgoaheadallguestshadtobookinwithaTestand Trace recording.GuestsweremetwithaBucksFizzdrinkandcanapésandwereabletomingleandchatforthefirsttimeinages.Adeliciousmeal followed served by carefully masked waiters.Followingthemealtheformalproceedingsbeganwith PresidentMartinBerry(whohaddiligentlyservedfora continuoustwoyearstretch)addressingtheattendeesbefore passingonthechainofofficetoournewpresidentStephen Higginbotham.Thetwistherewasthatduetosocial distancinglimitationsofcovidPresidentStephenhadtoplace thechainonhimselfratherthanhavethepastpresident place it round his neck.SueHigginbothamwaspresentedwiththeLady’sJewelby Martin’spartnerJosephinewho,inturnwaspresentedwith somewhiteorchidstothankherforallhersupportoverthe last two years.After presenting the vice president’s Jewel to Peter Mitton and the past president’s jewel to Martin, President Stephen made an address where he thanked the past president and his council members.With the formalities out of the way the attendees were able to chat with each other long and animatedly, something they had all been missing for far too long.
27th July - Award of Paul Harris Fellowships
Asoneofhisfinalduties,outgoingPresidentMartinBerryannouncedtwoPaulHarrisFellowshipsatthePresidentialChangeover.Thesefellowshipsareusuallyawardedforservicetothecluboverandabovewhatwouldbeexpected.PaulHarrisFellowrecognition wascreatedinmemoryofPaulHarris,thefounderofRotary.IthasbeenapracticeofmanyclubstoawardPaulHarrisFellowships inappreciationofhisorherservicetothecluborthelocal,nationalorinternationalcommunity.Thecitationsannouncedby President Martin was as follows.“It is my very great honour to present not one, but two Paul Harris Fellowships this evening.Thefirstgoestosomeonewhohasfoundthepast18monthsmorerestrictivethanmostofusbutwho,inspiteofthat,hascontinuedtobe particularlyactivewithinclub.Whenwewerenolongerabletomeetinperson,hesuggestedweshouldmeetonZoomandhelpedtheless computerliterateofustomasterthisnewtechnology.Whenwehadtocancelourfund-raisingevents,hesuggestedweshouldraisemoney onlinewithavirtualballoonrace.Andwhenwewereapproachedbyascurrilousorganisationaboutaludicrouscopyrightinfringementhe respondedquicklyandveryprofessionallytomanageourriskandhelpCouncildealwiththesituation.And,ontopofallthis,throughout the pandemic he has kept our “shop window” – our website - up to date and interesting.I am, of course, talking about Tony Briar.ThesecondPaulHarrisFellowshipgoestosomeoneelsewhohaskepthimselfbusyontheClub’sbehalfthroughoutthePandemic.Hehas managedtobecomeaverysuccessfullybloggerwithoutevenknowingwhatabloggeris!Hisad-hocmusingshavegainedawidefollowing andkeptmanypeople,someofwhomarelivingindifficultcircumstances,entertainedandconnectedduringthelonelydaysoflock-down. HewasthedrivingforcebehindthecreationofourMemoryCafé,andheisalwayslookingforwaystohelpthelessfortunateinour community.Tothatend,hehasservedforseveralyearsasaTrusteeofthe Deard’sTrustandhasbeenparticularlybusyinthatrolethroughoutthe pandemic.HehelpedournewPresidentset-upacommitteetolookatthe futureoftheclubandhehasgivenustwoexcellenttalksonZoom–both finishing exactly on time.I am, of course, talking about David Izod.”Sadly,TonyhadtocryofffromtheeventduetoillnessbutDavidwas abletoacceptthePaulHarrisFellowshipawardinpersonasshownin the photo.
11th July - Monthly Walk
Our walk of just under four miles long, started and finished at the Red Cow in the village of Chrishall. Chrishall Common at 482 feet is the highest point in Essex. Recorded in the 1086 Domesday Book in the hundred of Uttlesford with 58 households and 8 slaves, Chrishall in size is in the top 20% of settlements in England. It has not changed a lot in almost a thousand years. The land at that time was assigned to Count Eustace of Boulogne by William the Conqueror for his support in the battle of Hastings.The barn of the Red Cow, in the back ground to the picture on the left, was built in the 15th century and is the oldest building in the village. The pub itself was much modified in the 17th century.We started the walk by crossing the road and sports field before turning right on reaching a lane. The various thatched cottages on our left dated back several centuries. After passing the pond to our right we cut back through the trees to the road leading to the crossroad and memorial with the Red Cow on our right. At the top of Church Road we turned down Loveday Close. On turning right at the end we walked along the edge of the fields to a lane. At the lane we turned left to the end of the wood to get a view across the Cambridge countryside to the tower of Ely Cathedral in the far distance. You will need your binoculars to see it on a good day.Retracing our steps we continued along the edge of what is known locally as Bluebell Wood, a blaze of colour when the spring bluebells are in full bloom, to a crossroad. To our left is the village of Elmdon and to our right the village of Chrishall. We crossed the lane keeping the woodland on our right until we reached the fence paddocks of Hugo Lascelles Bloodstock situated in Elmdon, where we stopped for a coffee break. It was along this stretch of walk that John Wahlich remarked how easy it is to lose ones orientation on these walks and I remarked only a blind man could lose his way on this walk. After the coffee break to prove John’s point I had to eat my words. Instead of orientating myself I set off towards Pond Street before having to retrace my steps and turning towards Chrishall Holy Trinity Church. I have always done this walk the other way round but changed it to have a suitable break for coffee. With the private wood on our right we had a beautiful view across the undulating Essex countryside with Chiswick Hall on the far side of the B1039. This was the site of Flanders House, not that of the Simpsons, but that of Count Eustace of Boulogne, whose daughter Matilda married King Stephen. The remains of the fish pond and moat can still be found in the grounds of the house.On reaching the Church we crossed the church yard and descended to Church Road. The current flint built church dates back to the 12th Century. On crossing the road we followed the path up to Chalky Lane passed the hand pump which used to draw its water from the chalk aquifer, on to Hogg's Lane and the Red Cow and a pint of ale and a good meal. A pleasant and enjoyable stroll after all of the confinement.Jim Webb
TheweatherpredictionfortheAugustwalkpromisedrainfromabout1.00pmandluckilyitfollowedthescript,withasubstantial downpouroccurringsoonafterwewereensconcedcomfortablyinamarqueeattheFoxandDuckinTherfield.Wellmaybenot quitesocomfortablyasaheaterwasturnedonthatproceededtocooktheoccupantstomediumrareuntilitwasturnedoffafter a request from the sweating diners.Thewalkwasunusualinthatitallowedoptionsof0,2,4,6,8and10milecircuits.OnlySandraScottjoinedRaytowalkthe2miles fromhishousetomeeteverybodyelse,nowtotalling8,attheF&Dtosetoffforthe4milecircuit-aftertheobligatoryphotograph of course. Thewalkstartedoffnorthbeforejoiningthepath followingtotheEastalongaridgewithspectacular viewsacrossmilesofHertfordshireaswellasavast expanseofCambridgeshire.Itispossiblefroma singlespotonthisridgetoseethetalltransmitter aerialonSandyHeath,WimpoleHallanditsfolly,Ely Cathedral(some34milesaway),awatertower (some40milesdistant)inLittleport(BarbaraMitton’s birthplaceapparently–Littleportthatis,notthe watertower),lotsofCambridgeincludingKings CollegeChapelandAddenbrookes,GreatChishill windmillandPeterHoment’sandNeilHeywood’s houses. The only part of Royston visible is the tip of the 4 chimney stack in Johnson Matthey.Turning south we found our way to Reed End where, peeping over a high hedge, a cottage displayed a rather nice weather vane.WefollowedtheroadtowardsDaneEndbutturnedwestontoafootpathacrossthe fieldstoRooksNestLane.Hereafterashortsoutherlywalkweonceagainturned westontoafootpath,Rayhavingbeendisappointedthatahousethatnormally displayedseveralhighperformancecars,includingacoupleofMaclarens,wason thisoccasionmerelyofferinganAstonMartinSUV.Afurtherannoyanceonthis routewasthatinseveralplacesthefarmer(s)hadploughedrightuptotheedgeof the fields, leaving slightly difficult walking and no margin for wildlife.Wefollowedvariouspaths,huggingfieldsidesuntilweskirtedbrieflythrough KelshallandthenbackacrosstoTherfieldChurchandfromthereontotheFoxandDuck,wherewewerejoinedbyTony,Kashand Di for a very nice lunch. Those choosing Sunday lunch were mostly defeated by the giant Yorkshire puddings.The rain deterred even Sandra and Ray from walking back to Royston and so only the 4 and 6 mile walks were completed.Words and Pictures by Ray Munden
The walking group waiting in anticipation
No photo can do justice to the view across Cambridgeshire
The Striking Weather Vane
15th August - President’s Hello
At last we were to have the President’s Hello, much delayed from the month of July when we normally have this highly anticipated event. The origins of the event are lost in the mists of time but it allows all Rotarians and their partners to meet the new president for the year in an informal setting.The setting this year was President Steve and wife Sue’s lovely garden situated in a quiet and secluded part of Royston and on a beautifully sunny afternoon. The event was very well attended and we all sampled the extensive array of drinks on offer. After much catching up among friends it was time to eat, alfresco naturally, and what a feast lay before us. Quite apart from the hard work of preparing the salads and cold meats by Sue and Steve, other Rotarians (or more often their partners) had also contributed to the feast. So we sat in the sun, contentedly chattering and munching away until it was time for the sweet courses - always the most anticipated part of any meal. Once again we were faced with delicious-looking sweet dishes (all ever so slightly fattening to the waistline!). With Steve serving out strong coffee to finish I think we can remember a really great meal in lovely surroundings and with like-minded friends,A big thank you to Steve and Sue, and to all the other contributors who had worked so hard in the preparation. Photos below (they automatically slide in at 8 seconds but you can use the arrows at each side of the picture to step forward or back at your own pace).Pictures Courtesy of Steve Higginbotham
8th August - Monthly Walk
31st August - Presentation to the Photographic Contest Winner
Ahighlytalentedyounglocal photographerwasrecognisedthis weekbyRoystonRotaryClub. PresidentStephenHigginbotham wasdelightedtopresenta certificatetoJackKirby,aged11,in recognitionofhissignificant achievement.Jack,wholivesinFoxton,reached thenationalfinalsofRotary’s YoungPhotographerafterearlier thisyearwinningthejunior categoryinalocalcontest organisedbyourcklub.Hethen wentontowinatthedistrictlevel (coveringHerts,BedsandBucks), securingentrytothenational finals. Althoughhedidnotwinnationally,hisphotograph,‘Natureco-existingwithMan’,which depictsamistyviewofthechurchofStLaurence,Foxton,greatlyimpressedthejudgeswith itsqualityandcomposition.Hewastold“manyadultswouldhavebeenproudtohavetaken it.Youhavetheframingjustrightandabeautifuldepthoffield,withaspider’swebpin sharp and the church thrown out of focus to provide the perfect backdrop.”PresentingJackwithhiscertificateoutsideFoxtonchurch(above),MrHigginbotham congratulatedhimonhisachievementandhopedthathewouldenterthisyear’s competition, which Royston Rotary Club will be launching soon.
1st September - President’s “Weekend”
Thequotationmarksaboveareintentional-itwasdecidedthatthemuch delayedPresident’sWeekendforpastpresidentMartinBerrywouldbeheld midweekforachange.ThisyearthetripwouldbedowntoWiltshire,near toMartin’soldstompinggroundsandwasmeticulouslyplannedby JonathonBerks(withnodoubtalotofassistancefrombothLindaand Josephine).TheLuxuryRichmond’scoachpickedusupinstagesfromBarleytoGreen DriftinRoystonandwesetofftoBeaconsfieldtovisittheBekonscotModel VillageandRailway,claimedtobetheworldsoldestoriginalmodelvillage (www.bekonscot.co.uk).OnarrivalwemetupwithGraemeandLinda DargieandDavidandGlynisSmythwhohadtravelledbycarfromRoyston.Weweren’tdisappointedatBekonscot,everyfacetofBritishlifefromthecomplete20thcenturywasthereinminiatureandin meticulousdetail.Andwhocanforgetthetongue-in-cheek(ifslightlycorny)namesofmanyoftheminiatureshopse.g.“LenDCash, Pawnbrokers”, “Daily Reed, Newsagents” etc (See the picture gallery).BackonthecoachwetravelleddowntoGreatMissendenforlunchattheCrossKeyspubwherewehadpre-orderedourlunch selections,beforewanderingaroundthetownitselfforhalfanhourorso.WehadoriginallywantedtovisittheRoaldDahlmuseum intheHighStreetbuttheyweren’tgeareduptoacceptlargegroupswhilstcovidrestrictionswerestillinforce.Backtothecoach whichtookustothelittlevillageofWroughtonandtheAlexandraHouseHotelwherewemetupwithMikeTaylor,exRoyston Rotarian,andhispartnerRuth.Thateveningweallmetupforaverypleasantdinnerinoneofthehotel’sfunctionrooms.(Seethe picture gallery).ThursdaymorningweallsetoffafterbreakfasttovisitthevillageofLacock(www.nationaltrust.org.uk/lacock-abbey-fox-talbot-museum-and-village).ThispicturesqueWiltshirevillagedatesfromthe13thcenturyandnowadaysisownedalmostexclusivelyby theNationalTrusttomaintainaveryrusticcharm.Itwon’tsurprisevisitorstoknowthatitisaverypopularfilminglocation,Harry Potter,DowntonAbbey,Cranford,PrideandPrejudice,tonamejustafew.InadditionthevillageboastsLacockAbbey,originallya 13thCenturynunnerybutwithitsupperfloorsconvertedformorecomfortablecountryhouselivingfollowingtheDissolution.The Abbey is also home to the Fox Talbot museum, “Britain’s birthplace of photography”. (See the picture gallery).MidafternoonwesetoffbacktoourhotelviaAvebury(stonecircles)forarestandachangeofclothesbeforesettingoffintheearly eveningtotheGWRSteamMuseum(http://www.steam-museum.org.uk/)innearbySwindon.Hereweweregivenaguidedtourby anexperiencedoldrailwaymanwhowasabletoexplainthebeginningsoftheGreatWesternRailwayandSwindon’scentralroleinits development.Wetouredtheexhibits,marvellingatthesizeofsomeofthesteamengines,beforehavingdinnerinoneoftheir function rooms. Eventually, back on the coach to return to our hotel well before 10pm. (See the picture gallery).Friday,beingourlastday,weallcheckedoutofourhoteltosetoffforHenley-on-Thames.HerewemetupwithourguideGraham, whowalkedusaroundpartsofthetownpointingoutvariousbitsofhistory.Thistownisevidentlyalsoafavouriteplaceforfilming, particularyscenesfromMidsomerMurders,andGrahamwasabletopointoutvariouslocationsusedinthemanyepisodes.Once thewalkingtourwasoverweallboardedapleasurecruiserfromHobbsofHenleyforatwohourboattripupstreamandback, includingtraversingHambletonlock.Weweretreatedtoaveryacceptablebuffetlunchontheboatsothatwecouldseethesights passingbyasweateourfoodandlistenedtoGrahamdescribingpointsofinterest.Havingalicensedbarontheboatwasabitofa plus, too. (See the picture gallery).Finally,weboardedthecoachtoreturntoRoystonwherewearrivedsafelyabout5.30havingsuccessfullynegotiatedboththeM40 and the M25 on a typical Friday afternoon/evening.SpecialthankstoJonathon(andhishelperelves)fororganisingsuchafaultlesstrip-everythingwentlikeclockwork!(Wordisthat President Steve is also using Jonathon’s talents for his own President’s Weekend next year).