July Blog 2018

Back to Sunday 24th June, flaming it certainly was! After the working party set up marquee, gazebo’s etc. in the morning, we all returned in the afternoon for the grand opening of this year’s Fete. The gardens looked beautiful, the different arrangement of stalls and games worked brilliantly, there was even a very welcome breeze coming up from the valley. Tables and chairs had been dotted around under as much shade as possible for those to partake in tea and cake. A beautiful and stunning setting for this very English event. This year the Fete broke all records as a total of £2631 was raised, which is shared between St. Nicholas’ Church fund and the Village Hall. Well done to all who were involved, as this couldn’t happen without you. A special thank you to Harriet and Simon for once again welcoming us all and watching as their gardens were transformed. Also for the very welcome refreshments after all had been restored to their former glory later in the day. Thank you also to Dawn and Ahmed from Horseology with their very well behaved ponies which gave so much pleasure to so many.
Saturday 30th Oakley Bowling Club celebrated 40 years with a Garden Party at Malshanger. Steventon Ukulele group had their first ‘Gig’! and provided live entertainment before a very welcome tea. Musicality followed, David, Bryn and Theresa sang a medley of songs, mainly from shows, in all a very entertaining afternoon. We were treated by Sir Michael and Lady Colman to a walk around their wonderful grounds and gardens, the beautiful variety of trees providing much needed shade. We look forward to our next ‘Gig’ !!
July arrived feeling even hotter and on Sunday 1st Susan Hewetson-Brown from Ashe Warren Farm, held the RDA Driving day which consisted of around 30 carriages and ponies/horses of different colours and breeds. A wonderful sight to behold and I was very privileged to be driving one pulled by a beautiful piebald called Ben, one of Susan’s ponies, the other a lovely grey called Tess was also being driven, as Linda and Liz shared the drive with me. 12 miles long, plus a shorter route for those who preferred, all through beautiful countryside. What a marvellous event and of course all proceeds go to RDA. A big thank you to all who helped and especially to Susan.
Wednesday 11th the Jane Austen Society of North America visited St. Nicholas’ and enjoyed a talk by Michael Kenning before a walk around the grounds and refreshments outside under the shade. Such a lovely group, for some this was their second if not third visit.
Friday 13th was a special Book club meeting as we had lunch, which we supplied ourselves, hosted by Chris, which was to be held in her lovey garden. Yes, the only time it poured with rain! We still had the most delicious lunch and great time, thank you Chris. ‘Old Filth’ by J. Gardam, the clue is in the name. Filth – Failed in London Try Hong Kong, is the nickname that was bestowed on Sir Edward Feathers, a retired judge. He made his fortune in the Far East but now lives in Wiltshire. However, there is inevitably a double meaning. Secrets that have festered for more than a century are about to see the light of day. A score of 6 was given, worth a read.
Sunday 15th was the 200th Anniversary of Dean and a United Benefice service celebrated with Bishop David. 44 in all enjoyed the evening service also, afterwards, outside for delicious nibbles and wine which were very much appreciated.
Monday 16th Coffee & Cake morning was well supported, tables and chairs were outside in the shade for us all to enjoy, I think maybe it could have gone on longer as it was so lovely.
Sunday 22nd was Jane Austen Evensong. A really lovely service, with an extended choir! Afterwards the choir and partners enjoyed a delicious supper out in the garden with Paul & Marilyn, watching the sun set, a wonderful way to end the day. Thank you.
Ukes and singing are still going ahead as much as possible during the holidays. Many of Steventon Singers have been made very welcome at other choirs as we are all singing in the Basingstoke Festival of Choirs in September. Voices Together, a truly great event, so do book your tickets soon if you would like to come as they sell out fast. The date is Sunday 30th Sept. 7.00pm at the Anvil. Have to fill up the water for the birds, plus hedgehogs as I have just seen it is empty, yet again. It is the time of day now where is goes quiet as the birds find cooler places, as do we all…..Everything is struggling now in the garden, we have even started putting buckets outside the back door to put the washing up water in for watering later in the evening…Just like the summer of ’76! Lost track of how many BBQ’s we have had this year, amazing. Also first year it has been so wonderful to swim in the sea!
Enjoy, all too soon the children will be back at school and short days will return.