May 2002 Edition of the Linton News     Previous        Next

Articles  New Editor Required - Arthur Gore - Floods  Dominate - Parish Council - Police Report  -  History Society - Flower Festival - Virtuoso Performance -  WI - Who’s Working In The Village - Thanks - High Street Disturbance - Few Visitors But One Happy Couple - Your Right Of Way - Walk Like A Brownie - Shifting The Cornerstone - Happy Birthday - K Club - Camera Club Awayday - Shimmy With A Shammy - Nspcc - Council Code Tightened - Having Fun Raising Funds - Toddlers On The Move - Sports News - Bowls Club - Wacky Races - School Vacancies - On The Buses - Save Lives - Support Your Schools - Christian Aid - Your Heart - Bush Telegraph - Gardening Club - Country Diary


IF you were Editor of the Linton News, what would you publish? How would you treat village issues? What would you want the paper to look like? Could you make it even better?
If you’ve got a ready answer to these questions, you could be the person we’re looking for. We need an Editor-designate to learn within our supportive and helpful team and take over as Editor.
The paper has been edited for the past two years by Sally Simmons and before that by John Keeble, the current Assistant Editor. Both are staying with the paper but taking on new roles.
Sally, who is moving to Abington, will become Assistant Editor and John will concentrate on being Website/Directory Editor and putting together features for the paper, like April’s election special.
“This is a great opportunity to learn and practise new skills, and to get to know the village. And it’s putting something really worthwhile back into the community,” said Sally Simmons. “I have loved doing the job for the last two years and I have learnt a huge amount.”
The Editor needs writing and organising skills as well as communication skills and the ability to get things moving. It would be useful to have Apple Mac and PageMaker software skills, too, but that is not essential: almost everyone who joins the paper has to be trained to use the technology.
“It is important to have an idea of what makes a good story, what makes a good picture, and how to write a good headline (though that comes with practice),” said John Keeble. “Equally important is to have an open, inquiring mind: you have to be fair and impartial in the treatment of every subject.”
Production of the Linton News is a highly organised enterprise: missing print deadlines is not an option. Every person involved is a volunteer.
At the head of it is the Editor, who is responsible for the editorial coverage. The editorial process starts with the Editor and Assistant Editor thinking about what should be covered in the next issue, asking people to write articles, receiving offered articles (including many regulars) and doing some writing and perhaps photography themselves. Then the paper is assembled into pages using PageMaker software. Proofs are read and pages are delivered to the printer
Of course, there is a lot more going on: Ron Argent is always busy getting in the advertising; Norman Dann produces the ads and keeps the accounts; Graham Potter works on the technology and converting the paper for the website; Gloria Fidler, Tracey Wilson and Tracey Russell write articles and read proofs; Gill Barker organises the distribution and Alan Norton drives around to the vital last link in the chain, the scores of volunteer deliverers.
The Linton News is an independent organisation but owned by the Parish Council. It owns the computers and software used in the homes of the people working on it. It is now getting into digital photography. Almost everyone is linked into a “virtual office” by email.
Editors usually stay for two or three years before moving on to other roles on the paper or to new interests. This keeps the paper fresh with new views, attitudes and enthusiasm. Are you the new face of the Linton News?
If you would like to apply or discuss this opportunity, please telephone Sally Simmons  or John Keeble on  or email or
Linton News Team


ARTHUR Gore, founder member of Linton Granta Bowls Club, and the Linton News bowls correspondent, died on 15th April aged 91.
Although he grew up on a Cambridgeshire fen farm, Arthur Gore spent his working life in London local government. He was one of the last surviving Poor Law officers and later published a number of papers on public health and medical statistics. When he retired to Dorset he started to play bowls, as well as becoming chairman of his parish council. He decided his village should have its own bowls club, but with a state of the art green. Accordingly, the village club Arthur helped to found became the first club in Dorset with an all-weather surface.
He and his wife Norah moved to Linton in 1991 to be near their family. For some years the village had talked about a bowling green, but nothing had actually happened. Arthur decided he still had one more project left in him, so instigated what later became the Linton Granta Bowls Club. Of course, it had to be state of the art again, so Linton became the first club in Cambridgeshire with an all-weather green.
Arthur was proud of both the clubs he helped found. He became President of the Club, and celebrated his 90th birthday in June 2000 with a special bowls match. His work as the paper’s bowls correspondent encouraged him to take up computing; he was a founder member of the Senior IT Club and continued to attend computer classes at the Village College until February, despite the onset of illness. As befits a statistician, his reports for the Linton News were always completely accurate and on time. The Bowls Club will remember him in a match.

Bowls Club more


OCTOBER’S floods dominated the poorly attended Annual Parish Meeting on 26th April. Only 18 members of the public were present to hear Council chairman Dr Val Urwin present a review of the year.
Dr Urwin acknowledged that last year’s floods had been the major event of 2001, indeed the major event in the village for many years. More than 70 properties had been affected and some local businesses have not reopened since they were damaged. The village is still without its electrical goods shop and its chemist, a loss that has been deeply felt in the community. Dr Brasington, an environmental expert who attended January’s public meeting about the floods, gave a full report on the floods and outlined his study of the causes and measures that could be taken to prevent similar flooding happening again. He announced that his application for grant aid from the National Environment Research Council had been successful and funds have been granted for a three-year study. A student will be working with him from September 2002.
The meeting reviewed other events that have been overshadowed by the floods and their aftermath but about which the Council and village should congratulate themselves. These include improvements to both Linton’s main community centres, the Cathodeon, which has been extended, and the Social Centre, which has been redecorated and is attracting many more hirers as a result. Major work has been undertaken on the Recreation Ground, tree planting will celebrate the Queen’s golden jubilee and landmarks like Horn Lane bridge and the clapper stile have been renovated. Funding has also been made available to set up and expand the Mobile Warden scheme, helping the elderly in the village. The two public meetings held during the year, about traffic on the A1307 and the floods, showed that people care deeply about their community and are prepared to work to get things done. The Council is optimistic that Linton will rise above the general apathy over the Jubilee celebrations and support the entertainment that is being arranged for the Monday Bank Holiday on 3rd June.
A full account of the meeting is available on the Linton News website. LNT


Parish Council’s April meetings
THE Council is pursuing its aim to continue the footpath from Granta Leys to Kingfisher Walk. The clerk informed the meeting that the grass areas at the Heights belong to the residents’ association and it is up to householders to get the grass area cut. The Parish Council will not pay for this service. Detritus from the floods on the recreation ground is now being removed.
Holes and tracks from large vehicles in Leadwell Meadows have been reported to the contractors. The chairman gave an update on the flood, storage plans for sand for sandbags and the reopening of local businesses.
Plans have been received for improved access to the petrol station on the A1307. The council discussed the County Council Joint Structure Plan Review.
Council approved the placing of skateboard equipment on the recreation ground and allocated £1000 to the project with other funding coming from grants. The Horn Lane Ford Project, which is progressing, was also discussed.
Fifty-seven calls were made to the police during March, resulting in 32 recorded crimes. Dr Bear reported that a traffic control camera is to be located in the village. The Jubilee tree crescent on the recreation ground will be marked by a stone memorial plaque. The son of former Linton GP Dr Alick Brown has agreed to pay for one of the commemorative trees and a bench on the recreation ground. The Parish Council will pay for every child under 18 to receive an official commemorative coin.
The council has agreed to accept the model Code of Conduct.
The clerk thanked all the councillors for the past four years’ work and wished all well in the forthcoming election. The Chairman also thanked all councillors and the clerk for their support during her first year as Chairman. Council thanked Mr Linsdell who is not standing for re-election after 20 years as a councillor.
Code of conduct, page 4.
Footpath, page 3.


I SPENT a week in March investigating reports of a man who was masturbating in front of schoolchildren in Linton. I worked for four days with three other officers on statement taking. I had great help from Mr Bush and Village College staff, who allowed us to use rooms to take statements from children who were witnesses. On Thursday 14th March three plain clothes officers worked in Linton and the man was arrested at 11.30am. He has been remanded in custody at Bedford prison and it is expected he will get a long prison sentence.
Other crime in the area was light. In Bartlow a brand new cement mixer was stolen from the front garden of a premises despite being covered and hidden behind a three-foot wall.
My mobile number is available from Sawston. If you are reporting an incident or crime, please ring 01223 358966. In an emergency ring 999. PC Andy Denzey


THE speaker at the April meeting of the History Society, Mr Wells, is a member of the Trustees of Hobson’s Conduit, one of the oldest trusts in the country. He gave us a detailed history of the Conduit, and took us on an intriguing guided walk with slides of its route into Cambridge. Clear, clean spring water was brought into the town to clean out the King’s Ditch which had originally been dug to protect the town from invaders but had deteriorated over the years and been used as a sewer. This ditch is now buried under the city’s buildings.
The work of the Trust is to keep the springs and brooks running clear and clean and repair the banks. The expense is shared between the University and Town, and the Botanic Gardens. The road runnels are turned off in the winter to avoid flooding and water is also drained from the car parks at Addenbrooke’s Hospital.
It was disturbing to learn that planning applications are afoot to build a huge hotel and golf complex above the source of the Conduit. The Trust is very aware of the impact this could have and is working hard to ensure the continuity of Hobson’s Conduit.
Mr Wells was given a warm vote of thanks by Garth Collard.
An outing to Sutton Hoo is arranged for Wednesday 18th September. Anyone wishing to participate should contact Pat Genochio, 44 Finchams Close, Linton. At our next meeting on 21st May, Garth Collard will talk about the impact of World War One on Linton and surrounding villages. All are welcome. Joan Pearman


THE theme of this year’s Flower Festival at St Mary’s, 14th-16th June, is “To everything there is a season”… This well-known Bible passage has been chosen because we feel it has a message for us all after the events of the last twelve months, many sad, tragic and strange, and the world has changed a great deal in that short time. Parts of Linton have been flooded and people forced to move from homes and businesses while repairs take place, the countryside has suffered from the effects of a foot-and-mouth epidemic and globally we experienced the cataclysmic events of September 11th. We do, of course, have a reason to celebrate as well: the Golden Jubilee of Her Majesty the Queen is a cause for national rejoicing, and in spite of the floods our village businesses have increased with the opening of the Art Gallery and others. We hope to draw all these ideas together in our floral displays in church which will, as always, be open over the weekend to visitors from far and wide.
In addition, there will be the traditional Friday night barbecue, the Saturday market plant, produce and craft stalls, an excellent restaurant and a range of musical entertainments throughout the weekend. The famous Granta Duck Race takes place on Sunday afternoon, and last but not least, there will be another opportunity on Saturday afternoon for your teddy bear to make a parachute jump from the top of the church tower! Further details of these events and a full programme will be available soon. Make a note of the dates now and come along to a real village event which brings together people from many groups and organisations in support of our parish church.
Judy Nightingale, Lesley Gore


OUR season ends with a classic concert by two virtuoso players at 8pm on Saturday 25th May at Linton Village College.
David Campbell, one of Britain’s foremost clarinettists, teams up with the brilliant Japanese pianist Miyako Hashimoto to play two well-loved sonatas for clarinet and piano by Brahms and Poulenc. Schumann’s beautiful Fan-tasiestück and playful pieces by Stravinsky and Finzi complete the programme.
Tickets are available on the door or from Cambridge Arts Box Office % 01223 503333.
During the afternoon of Saturday 25th, there will be a Wind Band Workshop from 3-4.30pm. This is an opportunity for 10-16 year old players of any wind instrument to join a band playing all kinds of music, coached by David Campbell. Booking for the afternoon session is essential. Please call Hugh Wood 894908. Hugh Wood


THIRTY- eight members, plus Jessie Salter (Voluntary County Organiser), a colleague from Stapleford WI and one visitor were welcomed to the AGM at the April meeting. Birthday posies were made and distributed by Brenda Smith. Wendy Foster, President, reported that the table-top sale had raised £190.
Joan Pearman, the outgoing secretary, reported that there are now 57 members, including three new members and on average 45 members attend the meetings. She was thanked for her hard work and presented with a vase and flowers. Miriam Rixon, who is standing down from the Committee, was also thanked and presented with a gift. Wendy Foster thanked the Committee and other members who have helped in various ways during the year. Jessie Salter encouraged members to volunteer to be on the Committee. The bursary for Denman College was then drawn and was won by Val Spencer.
Margaret Cliff and a colleague from WI Markets had brought along a stall of produce, plants and handicrafts. They encouraged members to visit the WI Market at Cambridge Market every Thursday 8am-12 noon and at Great Shelford Memorial Hall on Wednesdays 8.30-11am. There is also a website to visit,
The next meeting is at 7.30pm on Tuesday, 7th May at the Social Centre. Two resolutions to be put forward at the Intermediate General Meeting in June will be discussed.
Anne Parry-Smith



Dear Editor,
I would like through your paper to thank Mr Dyer of Chalklands who was so kind to dig several gullies to get rid of some of the water which is pouring down Rivey Lane. We the people in Rivey Way like to use our back ways for short cuts to Chalklands and the cemetery, etc., and as I am in my late 80s I have found the water very bad to get through. I have been living here since 1952 and have never seen the lane so bad. Mr Dyer gave up his Saturday afternoon and Sunday to try and make it better for people who use the lane. Hope something will soon be done.
Mrs Sparrow
25 Rivey Way

Dear Editor,
Almost every day I walk from my home in Dovehouse Close through Horn Lane. As I approach the bridge over the river, I look hopefully for any sign that the surface of the lane is to be improved, but so far I have always been disappointed. The brickwork on the bridge itself is now quite splendid, but the surface of the bridge and its approaches are both ugly and dangerous. It really is amazing that no-one has yet tripped and sustained a fractured hip or worse. It might be a particular hazard to elderly churchgoers on their way to early or late services.
Mrs Nan Saward
6 Dovehouse Close

Dear Editor,
On behalf of the older generation of Linton I would like to show concern about us not being able to get our prescriptions in the village.
Is the Chemist going to open again? If not, shouldn’t some alternative be made for pensioners? Like so many of our age group we rely on our medication to keep us in reasonably good health, and we are not always able to go out of the village.
Name and address supplied

THANKS        Top

Dear Editor
May I through your paper thank everybody who gave so generously to the Oncology coffee morning on 21st March. £550.80 was raised and this will go towards the Patient Fund.
However, this would not have been possible had it not been for my band of workers, gifts, cakes and donations. A very big thank you to you all.
Wendy Boardman
11b Hillway

Dear Editor,
May I through the Linton News thank everyone for their good wishes, cards and gifts received after my recent and sudden illness.
Special thanks to Stephen, Jo and Julie.
20 Hillway


Closing our ears and curtains will not solve the problem
Dear Editor,
I was woken at 01.15 hours on Saturday 23rd March by what can only be described as a screaming drunken mob. After having to put up with this for some 15 minutes I got dressed so as I could go out and confront this drunken foul-mouthed mob. Just as I got into the High Street a police patrol car had pulled up and two officers were trying to move the young people away.
I approached one of the officers so as to make my views known and also ask why they were not making arrests for either being drunk in a public place or the use of foul and abusive language.
I was told that although they knew that the young people had been drinking they hadn’t found any alcohol in their possession and they hadn’t heard them swearing. The youngsters were swearing at the officers, while I was there. Just moving this mob from one part of the village to another doesn’t help anybody.
Why should we have to put up with such anti-social behaviour?
On this occasion the person who phoned the police needs our thanks but unless we all make our feelings felt on this growing problem among young people I can only see it getting worse. To shut your curtains and hope that the problem will go away is not the answer. Why should we let these drunken louts, both boys and girls, spoil what we have? After all, these are only teenagers and we are supposed to be responsible adults.
Name and address supplied


Dear Editor,
I would like to thank all those users of the Centre who turned up on Saturday morning and set out their stalls to advertise their group and attract new members.
It was a shame so few residents dropped in despite free tea, coffee and biscuits but it was a worthwhile event nonetheless, with one wedding booked on the day and one couple now considering the hall.
One of the issues being considered is whether to rename the Social Centre the Village Hall. This will be on the Agenda for the Social Centre Annual General meeting to be held on Wednesday 15th May, an event which all village residents are welcome to attend.
Once again, thank you to user group participants for their efforts on the day.
Gill Barker
Secretary, Linton Social


THE Parish Council is hoping to tarmac the stretch of path connecting the made up path behind Granta Leys with Kingfisher Walk. But the Council needs your help. First of all, it must prove that the path is a public right of way, which means proving that residents have used the path for at least 20 years. Forms are being delivered to the houses on the Park estate asking for information. However, there are many other people who have walked along that path. If you have used that path from time to time over several years, please contact Gill Barker at the parish office. She will ask you to complete a short form dealing with your use of the path.
The Council is also trying to establish the exact ownership of all the land along the river bank, from the land behind 1 The Grove as far as the western end of Kingfisher Walk. Again, if you can help please contact Gill with any information you may have. Andrew Gore


ON 22nd May, Linton Brownies are doing their Charity Walk. We will be leaving from the Infants’ School playground at 6pm to walk to Hildersham and back. This year we are walking for the Children’s Hospice at Milton and also laying down a mile of pennies. The cost is just £1 per family.
So, please come along and support us. Everyone is welcome to come and join in.
Daphne Brazier


ON 12th May the Cathodeon Centre is being re-decorated, so we will be holding our Sunday Service from 10am at the Social Centre ending with coffee around midday. For more information see our website at or 892236. Why not come and experience a community family service? Everyone is welcome. Tracey Russell


MISS Swift, with one other nurse, looked after 70 elderly patients at Linton Hospital for 30 years, the last seven as Matron. Minnie Swift is going to be 90 on May 21st - we owe her a great debt of gratitude
Minnie started her training at Leicester at the age of 19. After the War, she and two other nurses answered an appeal from the Indian Government to take the place of Indian nurses in military hospitals till they closed - that meant Burma for a year. Then home for her “year out” spent exercising greyhounds in the country near Rugby. 1948 saw the birth of the NHS and an appeal to come to Linton to the Old Work House, now called a hospital, but that was the only change - things did get better in time.
When I was Medical Officer, Matron would take me to some old soul - not happy about him or her. I would find nothing wrong yet in a day or two something developed. Matron said it was intuition - it was more than that - she knew every patient, name, birthday, medical history, etc., and she knew when something was not quite right.
So let us salute “Matron” on her 90th birthday and thank her for all she has done for the old people in Linton. As she put it “I knew the work would be hard, but you could survive if you had a sense of humour.”
Dr C M Attwood


WINNERS of the April draw: 1st (£50) J Forbes (No. 120); 2nd (£25) Jeanette Norton (No. 059); 3rd (£10) Sue Woodhouse (No. 309).


Camera Club member Jim Cracknell photographing at Tollesbury on the Essex coast

SEVEN hardy members of the Camera Club met at 5.30am on Sunday 14th April and travelled to the Essex coast for a photographic day out and the possibility of beverage research.
We travelled first to Tollesbury on the Blackwater estuary, and looking over the mudflats with the tide out and frost still on the ground, some of us wondered why we had left our warm beds. However there were some excellent opportunities for atmospheric photos of boats and boat building in the morning light.
After a hearty breakfast in Heybridge at 9am we continued to Maldon where a number of Thames barges were moored at the quayside. A guided tour of the old Moot Hall, including access to the roof and panoramic views of the town, preceded a liquid lunch at the Blue Boar nearby. Despite the early start an excellent day was had and members are grateful to John Keeble for the organisation.
The next meeting is at 11am on Sunday 12th May in the Social Centre, when Keith Papworth, Chief Photographer at the Cavendish Laboratory, will give a landscape slide presentation and discuss photo technique with us. New members are welcome - phone 894948 for details or just turn up. Mike Crofts


WE are starting our Jubilee celebrations early with a car wash in the Dog and Duck car park from 11.30am to 2.30pm on Saturday 11th May. Leave your car for the scouts to clean and enjoy some refreshment in the newly refurbished hostelry! Cost £2 per car. There will also be a tombola and cake stall.
The Scouts’ AGM will be held at 7.30pm on Thursday 23rd May at the URC hall. We urgently need new people to join the committee and to help on Cub and Scout nights. Please join us for a drink on 23rd May . Philip Ayton

NSPCC        Top

MANY thanks to all the people who supported the NSPCC Coffee Morning on March 21st - we made the magnificent sum of £540. Susan Anderson


PARISH councillors have always been required to declare any personal connection that might affect their approach to a particular item of council business. Having ‘declared their interest’ they are then usually expected to play no part in the Council’s handling of the item.
A written Code of Conduct has been in existence for some years. However, it was rather vague, and councillors have not been required to sign any document binding them to abide by it. In practice corruption is rarely found within parish councils. The occasional case of malpractice does surface though, but not within living memory in Linton.
Now, a new Code of Conduct has been introduced. It is clearer than the previous one. It tells councillors when they must withdraw from meetings, and when they may stay if the Council gives them permission to do so. A list of councillors’ major property interests within the parish must be open to public inspection. Every councillor is under a duty to advise the national Standards Board if they reasonably believe another councillor is breaking the rules. Parish Councils and Councillors are now required to sign up to the Code.
All this will probably strike readers as sensible and obvious. However, the new Code has been the victim of a campaign of misinformation from some quarters. In fact, every well-run and responsible parish council should welcome it. Linton Parish Council voted to adopt the new Code of Conduct in April. No councillor opposed it. You can now feel even more certain that your Parish Council is acting properly and honestly, even if you disagree with its decisions. Andrew Gore


THE first social event of the Linton Mobile Warden Scheme was held on Wednesday 10th April. About 40 people attended an afternoon tea. This was a very happy event and showed the range of talents lurking under the surface of this community. The quality and range of cakes was astonishing. Many thanks to the talented ladies of the committee and others who are a dab hand with the mixing spoon. Music was provided by Sally Plummer, with singing by Val Tarrant. As an American, Sally had to learn a new repertoire for her Linton audience, not an easy task but done to great effect. The tables had delightful arrangements of spring flowers and plates of chocolates were a thoughtful addition. Thank you for the donations - your generosity funded this event and the raffle prizes. The star prize was a gift of family tickets kindly donated by Linton Zoo.

We have been able to fund extended hours for our Warden but, such is the need, she has taken on more clients than would normally be expected within her time. The scheme has proved more popular than anticipated, mainly due to the personality and capability of the Warden; we appreciate the extra care she has provided.
If you would like to know more about the scheme or have ideas for social events, contact Gill Barker % 891001, or Enid Bald % 891069. Please leave a message on the answerphones if we are not there. Enid Bald


TOTS in Tow is a parent and baby and toddler group that currently meets at 10am on Wednesday mornings at the Free Church Hall in Horn Lane. The group was started when it became apparent that there was a need for support for both children and parents. The organisers set out not only to make it a warm, friendly meeting place for toddlers but to make it a place where the parent/carer came first, found new friends and could generally relax and share their parenting experiences.
‘One of the reasons the group has been so successful is that the people running it didn’t have toddlers themselves’ explains Sarah Thorne. ‘When you are involved with this type of volunteer work it is very difficult to strike the right balance between encouraging other mums and dads and seeing to the needs of your own child. It’s very easy to end up torn and feeling guilty that you haven’t done either very well. Then it can quite easily become a chore instead of a pleasure’.
Sarah Thorne and Ceri Smith obviously still find being involved a great pleasure, so much so that they have decided to organise a big birthday party this month to celebrate the group’s 10th anniversary. This will be held at the usual time (10am) and place on Wednesday 8th May. Everyone who has ever helped out, or attended a session, is invited. If you have never been and would like to find out more, in whatever capacity, you are very welcome to attend this event.
A Parentalk/Gallup research poll in 1999 revealed that one in three parents feels a failure. In its efforts to combat these feelings Tots in Tow have been running Parentalk video-based courses. There are now plans to extend and expand these facilities and ideas and start up a family resource centre. The idea is to have one central place in the village that has all the information relevant to family health, social and educational life. This will mean a change of venue for the Tots to the Social Centre in September but in the meantime they will continue their weekly meetings in Horn Lane until the school summer holidays. LNT

SPORTS NEWS        Top

BASKETBALL players of all standards are needed for Friday evenings at Linton Sports Centre. Juniors (9-15 years) will play from 5-6pm, adults from 6-7pm. Adults would be welcome to help with the juniors; juniors will be welcome to stay to watch the adults!
There will be a range of sports and activities available at the Sports Centre during this term’s half-term holiday. On Wednesday 5th, Thursday 6th and Friday 7th June there will be the usual multisports mornings (10am - 12.30pm), with trampolining and archery courses on the Wednesday and Friday afternoons (2 - 4pm).
If you are interested in joining the new basketball club, or if you want more information about the half-term activities at the Sports Centre, please call Mark or Lucy
Mark Wilson


MEMBERS were sad to hear of the death of our founder member, Arthur Gore, on 15th April. His expertise on the green was a pleasure to watch. Derek Dimmock


THIS year marks Queen Elizabeth II’s 50th year on the throne and to commemorate the occasion there is an extended Bank Holiday on Monday 3rd and Tuesday 4th June.
To celebrate this event on Bank Holiday Monday, and to help raise funds for Linton Charities, The Crown Inn of Linton will be hosting The Linton Wacky Races (otherwise known as Pram or Wheelbarrow Race). With teams entered from the village’s pubs and many local businesses, it should make a great spectacle.
Anyone over 18 can take part, the more the merrier. Entry and sponsorship forms with full details of the race and route will be available from the three High Street pubs and Sweet Talk News.
The starting grid will be outside the front of The Crown then run down the hill, along Market Lane toward the Linton Pavilion. From there a quick dash to the next watering hole at The Dog and Duck and then up the High Street to the half-way point at the Fire Station. Next it’s back down the High Street to The Waggon & Horses for another refreshment break and then down Church Lane and through the ford (where the chariots will get a good soaking courtesy of the local fire crew). Racers will then carry on up to the finish line back at The Crown.
All you need is an old wheelbarrow, pram or trolley (nothing motorised), a bit of imagination to transform it into a fantasy chariot, and a good pair of running legs. Teams of two people are allowed per chariot. Spectators are welcome both at the start/finish line and all along the route where water bombs and water pistols are actively encouraged (to cool down the racers, of course). The Crown will be open all day with a hog roast in the afternoon for anyone who has worked up an appetite.
We’re hoping for lots of sponsors as all monies raised will go to two Linton charities - The Linton Firefighters Association and Chestnuts Pre-school Playgroup to purchase play equipment for the under fives. If this year’s race is a success, we would like it to be an annual event with winners and laurel wreaths, champagne and an engraved cup for the winning team plus other prizes donated by The Crown. There is also a special category for Best Dressed Chariot and Drivers.
We are also looking for help to decorate the High Street for the Jubilee. Anyone who can get hold of bunting or Union Jacks or who would be willing to help put it up, please contact us at The Crown. Or perhaps you could help as a marshall on the day? All help gratefully received.
The Linton Wacky Races will start at 1.30pm sharp on Monday 3rd June. We are aiming to collect at least £1000 for these local charities. So collect your forms and get them filled in soon - and stake an early claim to your place along the route! For further information, please contact Louise or Joel  at The Crown Inn.


THE Linton Out of School Club will shortly be interviewing for volunteers for the summer holidays. This is ideal work experience for 16-17 year olds interested in childcare as a career or equally young people who wish to ‘play’ with the children at the Club.
These positions are much sought after and can sometimes lead to employment. We are able to offer training support and work experience.
We also have a vacancy available at the moment for someone looking for part-time work, from 3pm-6pm on a four days per week basis. Please contact Annette Brooker % 891097 about either of these positions.
We are holding our AGM at 8pm on 23rd May at the Cathodeon Centre and we will be providing cheese and wine for all who attend. We would be very pleased to see any parents who use the Club and also anyone interested in finding out more about us.
The Club is run by a management committee made up of working parents, and we are always looking out for new members to swell our ranks and pass on any skills they may have to aid the smooth running of the Club.
What most people fail to realise is that without the support of these parents the Club would have to close, which would put huge pressures on all of us who use and value the Club. As we all know, safe affordable childcare is a rarity and must be supported in every way. We look forward to seeing you on 23rd May. Annette Brooker

ON THE BUSES        Top

BECAUSE of the success of the 113 bus route in attracting new passengers, the Stagecoach bus company has invested in seven new double-decker buses for this route. This will mean that buses will be less crowded during the rush hour and hopefully more reliable.
The County Council is soon to trial real time bus-stop information. Buses will be tracked by satellite and beam information to bus stops. Eventually, this information will be available on mobile phones and the internet so you can see when the bus is due to arrive before you go to the bus stop. Terry Bear


MAGPAS (Mid Anglia General Practitioner Accident Service) has been providing emergency support to the ambulance service at any type of incident since 1971 and this year we are launching the First Responder Scheme throughout Cambridgeshire and we urgently need your help.
All first responders will be trained in first aid and in the use of specialised heart monitoring equipment (defibrillator) to shock a heart in the event of a cardiac arrest. Each team member on call would attend an incident after a 999 call is made to the ambulance service and then activated via the ambulance service control room. They would be trained and equipped with a first aid kit, oxygen, defibrillator, two-way radio, mobile phone/pager, etc.
This is an exciting opportunity to become involved in your own community and to provide vital time to a casualty, often saving a life, until the ambulance arrives. All too often people die before expert help arrives and with the already overstretched emergency services and the great distances they have to travel to reach an incident, it is expected that the Community First Responder Scheme will help save lives. The Community First Responder Scheme is designed to complement and work alongside the already first class emergency ambulance service and will not replace services delivered by the ambulance service.
Do you want to become a First Responder or do you know of anyone who would be interested in becoming one? To find out more, please do give us a call on % 01480 371060 and ask for Rob Payne, Scheme Co-ordinator, who will be happy to discuss the project with you in detail. Rob Payne


COVER Me Bad, a local band who played to great effect at the Infants’ School Valentine’s Dance earlier this year, are playing on 15th May at Linton Heights. Tickets are available from the school so please try to come along, see a great band and support one of your local schools at the same time.
The next main function for Linton infants will be the Summer Fair on Saturday 22nd June. We are planning to have an adult bouncy castle, children’s boat races, face painting and many more events. We hope to see you all there for a great family day of fun.
Linton Infants PSA


LAST year the Christian Aid collection in Linton raised over £2,000 to help some of the world’s poorest people - a magnificent effort! Christian Aid is asking, once again, for you to give as much as you can to help fund long-term projects in such places as India, South America and the Philippines, to train and equip poor people in these areas to help them escape the poverty trap and become independent and self-sufficient traders and farmers. If you are a UK taxpayer, you can make any donation bigger by filling in the form on the back of the envelope you will receive. The Chancellor will add a bit too! Margaret Cox


THE British Heart Foundation is holding the fourth Cambridge Colleges and Country Walk on Sunday 9th June to continue to raise much needed funds for the Foundation’s fight against heart and circulatory disease, the UK’s largest cause of premature death.
Starting at Coton Orchard Garden Centre from 10am until noon, the easy 6-mile circular route goes along footpaths to the backs of the Cambridge Colleges and around the city centre before returning to Coton Orchard. The route is suitable for all ages, pushchairs and wheelchair users. Local businesses may be represented by teams. There will be certificates for everyone completing the walk, prizes for the highest individual fundraisers and the Cambridge Building Society challenge trophy for the highest fundraising team.
Howard Taylor


THERE is one job in this sophisticated, civilised world of ours that is unpaid, unappreciated, easy to do badly and comes with virtually no training. It is dismissed as not a job at all and blamed for all the problems in society - almost in the same breath. It’s parenting. In the 50s and most of the 60s, extended families were generally the norm. If mum wanted to work, the chances are there were grandparents or even aunts and uncles around to help with childcare. The pace of life was slower and the pressures on young people were considerably fewer than today.
As the technological revolution gathered pace and economic progress drove up costs, the demands on parents and children increased. It soon became usual, even expected, for both parents to work . We began to expect more and more of our young people and the schools they attended as the world became more complex and demanding. So we have parents under pressure from work (the UK has the longest working hours in Europe) and children under pressure from society (via the education system and the media). What we do not have is proper recognition of the importance of parenting. We do not teach it in schools, it has no place within the national curriculum and it has minimal status in educational terms. Yet now more than ever the spotlight is turned on parenting as a result of the increase in poor behaviour in the nation’s schools, street crime, delinquent behaviour by teenagers and pre-teens and depression and anxiety among young people. There is talk of forcing those with delinquent children to attend parenting classes. A major study in the US, now replicated here, talks about the urgent need for daily quality time between children and parents. The myth that adolescents do not wish to talk to their parents has finally been dispelled. Where does this leave the struggling parent? The demands, expectations and requirements of the job have never been greater. Good luck everyone! Clive Bush, Principal

Speak up for garden club meetings

THE Garden Club at last has a claim to fame, as those of you who listened to Gardener’s Question Time on Radio 4 on 21st April will know. Our President, Judy Nightingale, asked the panel for a way to commemorate the Queen Mother at Girton College, where she was Visitor.
At our last meeting we were taken on a pictorial journey around the shores of Lakes Como and Maggiore in northern Italy. Gardening has flourished in this area since the first century BC. The style differs greatly from our own and is more to do with stonework statuary and water than with plants. Views of graceful villas and classic architectural shapes of trees and shrubs reminded many of their holidays in the area. However, the theme may not have been to everyone’s taste as the meeting was not well attended. The Committee would like to receive members’ suggestions for future subjects as soon as possible.
The annual plant and produce sale will be held at 3 Mill Lane from 10am to 12 noon on Saturday 11th May. Any donations will be gratefully accepted on the Friday evening between 5 and 7pm or on Saturday morning, and everyone is welcome to come and buy.
Easton Lodge is the venue for the evening outing on Tuesday 14th May. We will meet at 5.30pm at the Social Centre, where transport will be organised. We hope this visit will be a pleasant ending to the season’s programme with summer gardens to be enjoyed before we meet again for the Show in September.

LINTON COUNTRY DIARY by Darryl Nantais        Top

Illustrated by Maureen Williams
ABOUT this time of year, a little rodent emerges after several months’ hibernation. It is a lowland creature known as the edible dormouse. Despite its popularity as a delicacy with the Romans, it only made its way to England just over a hundred years ago. I’m keeping the recipe a secret but look out for this tasty, fluffy-tailed morsel which is mainly nocturnal and to be found foraging by mature beech trees
Have you noticed the large London plane tree of the family Platanaceae (famed for its resistance to city pollution) that towers by the High Street bridge? Last week I stood and admired its splendour as it shimmered in the spring sunlight and breeze. A grey squirrel with a striking head of sienna red moved back and forth in a clockwork manner on a branch overhanging the river. It stopped and dropped something which sailed down to the Granta where a trout rose and snapped up the discarded item before returning to the shade of the plane. Five innocent looking young boys gathered on the bridge to practise their excellent spitting on three trusting ducks below. “Don’t do that,” I said, “You may infect them with something they can’t handle”. The boys suddenly spotted the active trout and launched into enthusiastic and polite conversation with me about their fishing exploits. Whilst they bobbed up and down with demonstrative coded gestures known only to the young fishing fraternity, I shared an account of the elusive coy carp on the loose since the October floods. Ten youthful eyes brightened with excitement at the thought of landing a fish worth many pounds. Judging from my encounter with these young Lintonians, England will prosper in their hands. Two of the boys have since been instrumental in locating the whereabouts of a mink and have also reported more sightings of crayfish in the Granta, describing them as “like little scorpions”.

AND ACTION!        Top

HAVE you always wanted to make a video? Have you shot scenes and want to make them interesting and professional looking? Do you want to make a visual record of your community or group? Would you like to send a video to someone for publicity? You can learn how on Saturday 11th May at a one-day course at Linton Village College. The class will show you how to plan shots, edit and even add music, using only domestic equipment. The class tutor, Huen Swee Kim, has a background in producing and directing documentaries, and has just held a successful 10-week course in Cam-bridge. The day class is suitable for all age groups. For more information please telephone Sue Albrow at the Community Education Office at Linton Village College on % 892400. Sue Albrow

A1307 ‘CAN TAKE MORE CARS’        Top

RESIDENTS of South Cambridgeshire will be amazed to learn that the A1307 road from Haverhill to Cambridge is “relatively uncongested”. This is a conclusion of a consultant’s report to St Edmundsbury District Council on the implications of the expansion of Haverhill. The report goes on to say that Haverhill can take another 7000 homes without problems.
On learning the conclusions, County Councillor Dr Terry Bear, who represents the villages along the A1307 such as Horseheath, Linton and Hildersham said, “The consultants must have driven along the A1307 at 1 o’clock in the morning if they think that there is no traffic problem on the road. My constituency is cut in half during the rush hours by the continuous stream of Haverhill residents commuting to Cambridge. Many mornings there are queues of cars up to a mile long south of Ad-denbrookes Hospital. It is becoming increasingly stressful to drive on the road and people take their life in their hands to try to cross the traffic at busy times.
“It is totally unrealistic to think that public transport will take a large proportion of the extra commuters that some planners would like to see living in Haverhill.”
Cllr Bear concluded: “I challenge the consultants and St Edmundsbury planners to come to Linton at 8am on a Monday morning during term time and convince me that the A1307 can take even more traffic from the expansion of Haverhill.”
Linton Parish Council


A GROUP of Flaxfields ladies recently got together for a Knit and Natter. They exercised their knitting and nattering skills and in so doing raised the very creditable sum of £90.20 for The Home Farm Trust.
Following the success of last year’s holiday, we are planning this year’s trip to Skegness. The holiday will be from 27th July to 3rd August. Please contact Jacquie % 893477 for more information. If it’s a shorter outing that appeals to you, we are also planning a day trip to Great Yarmouth on Saturday 22nd June. Again, contact Jacquie for details and to book your trip.
Finally, heartfelt thanks from all the residents to the Beavers who planted a tree on our green, and to Mrs Anderson for arranging for them to do so.
Jacquie Wilson
Gloria Fidler