December 2002  Edition of the Linton News    Previous        Next

Articles:- Fetch the Engine, Resident Supports Firefighters, Christmas Boxed Up!, Handel on Xmas, Help Wanted!, Parish Council Report,Fireworks Spextular!, Perfect Play, Rock Around the Time, Broadband for Better Excess, We Can Help You, Shoe Boxes and Sierra LeoneIll Wind Deals a Heavy Blow to the Linton News, Professor Barry Leighton 1920-2002, Afghan Guests at Village College, Advertising for an Advertising Manager, Blooming Great for a Second Year, STC Card Sale Success, All Change at LA4Y, Men (and Boys) Only, Christin gle Service, Social Club gets Brainy with it, Camera Club  Meetings, Exhibition at College, K-Club Winners, The Bush Telegraph, Utterly Butterfly, Linton Country Diary.
Letters:- Majority Vote to Ban Through Traffic, There are Other ways to Walk, Using the High Street is like playing Russian Roulette, Resting Bus Stops will Improve Safety, Veterinary Services Deliveries.


Fire crews from Linton, Haverhill, Sawston, Saffron Walden and Cambridge arrive to tackle the blaze
AT around 9am on Saturday 16th November the emergency services were called to say that a house in Rivey Close had smoke coming from the roof space. The Linton Engine was not available as there were not enough retained crew on duty that morning, and a call was made to Haverhill. At this point, the Linton Grapevine was put into effect and the incident was brought to the attention of an off-duty fire fighter who reported to the fire station, ensuring that there was now a crew of four, so they were able to attend the incident. They arrived on the scene very quickly, followed closely by the crew from Haverhill, who were called first. The first impression was that the smoke was coming from all the roof spaces of the whole terrace so a call was put out for another four appliances – in case the fire had begun to spread. Appliances from Saffron Walden, Sawston, Cambridge and another from Haverhill soon arrived.
There were two people in the house when the fire started, but they had left, along with all the residents of the other three houses in the terrace. There was no need for a rescue, but the firefighters acted quickly to check the other three houses to see how far the flames had spread, to turn off the gas at the mains and to tackle the blaze in the first house. In all, 14 firefighters with breathing apparatus tackled the main blaze, and it was brought under control in less than an hour. Damping down obviously took a while longer.
The fire began in the back bedroom, but the flames soon spread through the upstairs ceiling to the loft space and ate through the bedroom floor and into the downstairs area. Happily, there were no casualties. A neighbour who suffered from smoke inhalation was taken to hospital as a precaution.
The question arises as to what might have happened if this incident had occurred 24 hours before, when the firefighters were on strike. The Haverhill firefighters were not striking, but as they are based in Suffolk they would not have been called across the border during the strike, and so Linton’s only cover would have been via the two Green Goddesses based in Cambridge. Bearing in mind their top speed has been estimated at 50 mph, this trip would have taken at least 40 minutes, assuming they were not already on another call. The Linton firefighters would not have been informed at all due to the strike, but if the Linton Grapevine had been in action, they would have had to call their superiors in Cambridge for permission to attend the incident with the Fire Brigade’s equipment, or tackle the blaze themselves as members of the public – with no insurance cover. The damage could have been much, much worse.
So, we have had two serious house fires in as many years, and both show that we need to maintain our fire cover in Linton. It is a real struggle to rally a big enough crew at all times of the day as there needs to be a minimum of four firefighters before the crew can take to the road. At present Linton has 10 people on its roster, but there is capacity for 18. The fire brigade is currently recruiting retained firefighters – anyone interested (male or female) has to live or work within four minutes of the fire station and be reasonably fit. If you are interested, please call 01480 444539 or turn up at the fire station on any practice night (Wednesday).
Tracey Wilson

grateful resident supports Firefighters          Top

ON reflection of the day of the incident, I was very grateful for all the fire crew that turned out. The fire fighters did their job very well, risking their lives in doing so. Thank God nobody was hurt, though some people were put at risk inside the house and neighbouring homes too.
If the fire crew were still on strike for their beliefs and we had had to rely on the Green Goddesses the circumstances could have been a lot more devastating. The Green Goddesses would not have been able to cope with the intensity of this fire as their equipment is very basic and old fashioned and neighbouring houses would have suffered more than smoke damage. Without seeming ungrateful the best place for a Green Goddess would be a museum! I would like to say that I support the fire crew in their strike as they deserve a sufficient wage and better work conditions for the risks that they take in serving the community.
The family would like to thank the fire crew and the local community for their help and support on this sad occasion.

Adrian O’Callaghan

getting Christmas boxed up!          Top

Organisers Kim Davidson & Rachel Fosberry with family
OPERATION Christmas Child is a way for everyone to give a little for Christmas and this is exactly what the Infants and Linton Heights Junior School have done this year.
All the children were asked to wrap a shoe box and fill it with small gifts. They then brought them into school and the Samaritan’s Purse collected them, ready to send them out to children in third world or war torn countries.
We managed to collect 110 boxes this year, which was a great first time achievement, so many thanks to everyone who provided a box.
Next year we are hoping to run this scheme again but on a much bigger scale so please save any presents you receive this year that are not to your exact taste and next year they can make a child somewhere in the world very happy!
Kim Davidson

get a handel on xmas          Top

GET into the Christmas spirit by joining us for what promises to be an outstanding performance of Handel’s Messiah on Sunday 15th December at Holy Trinity Church, Balsham. We are delighted to be welcoming Cambridge Voices with the Orchestra of the Age of Reason under their Director, Ian de Massini. Together they can be relied upon to bring a fresh and invigorating interpretation to this cherished work. Soloists are chosen from within the choir, which is made up of 16 outstanding singers. The audience are warmly invited to join in the singing of the Hallelujah Chorus and copies will be provided!
Founded in 1990 Cambridge Voices have developed a reputation far beyond these shores. In 1991 they began an association with the Swiss composer Cart Rütti which has led to numerous tours throughout Europe. In 1999, aided by the composer’s widow, they made the first recording of Duruflé’s Requiem in the church of St Étienne-du-Mont in Paris where he was organist for over 50 years. Cambridge Voices aim to create in their audiences a feeling of entertainment and involvement and consequently each performance is a memorable occasion.
The concert starts at 8pm. Tickets are available on the door or through the Cambridge Arts Theatre Box Office on
% 01223 503333. Further information from Hugh Wood Hugh Wood

help wanted!           Top

WOULD you like to become more involved in the life of our village? Are you interested in volunteering some of your time to do something both interesting and hugely rewarding?
The Linton News is looking for new people to join our team. Interested?

See page 4 for details...

pARISH cOUNCIL rEPORT   Reported by GRAHAM POTTER          Top

Past meetings:
Following feedback from the previous meeting, a member gave the Council a report on the traffic situation in the High Street.
Council are becoming concerned at the number of trees overhanging the footpath including those that are growing naturally and those brought down during storms and not being cleared by their owners.
There is to be a meeting with the council grass maintenance contractors and new practices are to be implemented at the cemetery to overcome problems experienced within the last year.
It was reported that the Infants’ school fencing is now due to be erected during the February halfterm of 2003.
The latest recycling credit has been received but no indication was given whether the "green box" system is working against the car park recycling banks.
Council have agreed to carry out some remedial work around the village sign.
The pedestrian entrance to the rec is once again under water and the holes are to be filled. Linton postal service is suffering due to a lack of deliverers. Replacements are being sought.
November meetings:
Members of the public informed the council of the group formed in Linton to try to get broadband internet here and the different methods that are being investigated to speed up its availability. The council gave its support to the group. There is a meeting to be held in December by the District Council to discuss broadband services to rural communities.
The police report indicates 17 crimes were reported in Linton.
Concerns were expressed that the High Street is being used as a Park-and-Ride for cars.
The road works on the 1307 are causing problems with traffic hold ups which is affecting Linton Village. The County Council are trying to get the contractors to give priority to Haverhill traffic in the morning and Cambridge in the evening but as the County has no power over the contractors this is proving difficult.
An extensive report from the Traffic working party was discussed and its findings agreed by Council.
Stansted airport’s expansion was discussed.
Council also agreed the recommendations from a report on Race Equality, Freedom of Information Act and the New Audit Regulation Requirements. The clerk reported that, of the councils involved, Linton complied with nearly all requirements but there were some that have been missed. One omission involves ways to publicise council documents so they are available from places other than the Council Office.
It was also reported that Linton’s firefighters are joining in the industrial action so the village will be covered by Green Goddesses.


Soggy but smiling! Mike, Sue, Donna and Dave Eaton enjoy the Linton fireworks
IT was pouring, but this didn’t discourage the people of Linton from trudging along to the muddy field for another fantastic display of fireworks. We arrived early to grab some hot food and drinks before the off. Despite the rain and the soaked wood the bonfire eventually roared away, providing some very welcome heat.
Then the count down began. 5,4,3,2,1 ... nothing. Then another 5,4,3,2,1... nothing. On the third go, 5,4,3, bang! They started at 2 but hey, at least they were off! Quite how anyone managed to light any of the fireworks is amazing, they must have been soaking.
The organisers did a great job and most of the fireworks could be seen above the sea of umbrellas. It did stop raining halfway through but the "Goodnight" firework was drenched and could only manage "odnight". We didn’t think it was odd at all, just great fun!

Adrian Eaton

perfect play          Top

GRANTA Playgroup would like to thank Tony Free for the fantastic wooden playhouse he made for us. The children really enjoy playing in it and it provides many opportunities to develop language and social skills. We have asked Mr Free to build a play shop which will also be a great addition to the group’s facilities.
Our production of "Father Christmas and Uncle Holly" takes place on 12th December and the Christmas Party is on 11th December.
Hilary Crooks


AZTECS JFC will be holding their very popular New Year’s Eve dance again this year. There will be an optional Mods and Rockers fancy dress theme. Tickets are available from Peter Belsom  but be quick as there is a discount for all tickets bought before 24th December.
Max Penfold


AFTER countless phone calls to btopenworld I still find it hard to believe that broadband internet access is not available in a village the size of Linton. Then I discover that indeed it is available, but only in the village library due to public sector funding.
So I thought it may be worth mentioning the benefits of ADSL as a service more or less cost effective to all at the price of £30 a month with a permanent connection and no call charges.
The modem is constantly connected to the internet via a line splitter which allows you to have internet access but also frees your phone line, enabling you to use the internet and make and receive calls at the same time.
As well as download speeds of 512k a second you are able to download large amounts of data such as mp3 music, software programmes, streaming video, even films and books in a fraction of the time it takes with a normal 56k connection.
In addition, broadband allows you to access radio and TV (such as CNN) that is not normally available in the village.
After my last call I was told that for broadband to be installed in the village enough people are required to register an interest in the service. At present only around 70 people have expressed an interest. I find it hard to believe that there are not more people interested in the service so I implore all who are to go online to and register so that this new and exciting technology is available to all.

K E O’Connor

we can help you          Top

LINTON Area Dyslexia Group are underway again at last! Our first public venue will be a sales stall at Ashdon Village Hall from noon-4pm on 14th December. If you are interested in finding our more about us and what we can do to help you, then please come and support us. We look forward to seeing you at the Craft Fair.
Margaret E Clark

shoe boxes and sierra leone          Top

APPROXIMATELY 40 members, attended the November meeting of the WI President Wendy Foster told members that spring bulbs had now been planted near the library.
Margaret Clark gave a report on the recent Council meeting where Ruth Bond, Chairman of the Cambridge Federation of WIs had spoken about the many and varied activities undertaken by WI.s. She asked members to fill shoeboxes with small gifts for BBC Cambridgeshire’s Christmas appeal to help children throughout the world. The Association of Country-wide Women (ACWW) aims to help women in Third World countries to become self-supporting and to this end, monies collected in WIs "Pennies for friendship" boxes recently have provided women in Ghana with chickens. Ruth Bond encouraged members to be aware of the campaign to support local post offices.
Marjorie Blackman told members that three teams from Linton WI all did well in the recent Quiz Night at Cottenham. A team from Over WI won the competition. Several members attended the Group Meeting at West Wratting where Linton WI won the limerick competition. Several other members gave accounts of WI courses/visits in which they had recently taken part. The speaker for the evening was Alex Todd on "People and Places in Sierra Leone and Papua New Guinea – a personal view". Alex related how his apprenticeship at the laboratories of the Zoological Department of Glasgow University had led eventually to jobs at the University in Sierra Leone and in Papua New Guinea. He illustrated his talk with excellent slides of the landscape in both countries and of an amazing gathering of warriors in Papua New Guinea to compete for the best headdress!
The meeting on 3
rd December is the Christmas Dinner. Quintus Benziger will provide the entertainment. There is an open meeting at 7.30pm on 7th January 2003 in the Village Hall, Coles Lane, Linton. Visitors very welcome. Clive Bush, Principal of LVC will give an illustrated talk on LVC and their South African Link. There will be a special raffle.
Anne Parry-Smith


Dear Editor,
Thank you for continuing your reports on the High Street chaos. It seems that most of us are adamant that the appropriate authorities must be made to see sense and we must persuade them to listen to us.
I believe that most cars, vans and lorries travelling through our village are not from Linton itself but from areas outside the village and whose drivers are seeking the fastest ñ and easiest way ñ of getting on to the main Cambridge road. The problem is made worse as the Highways Authority still designates the High Street as the main route to Newmarket and beyond. This is a street which has remained unchanged for centuries ñ there are no front gardens, it cannot be altered, yet it is designated a major traffic route.
We therefore have a speedway through the centre of this old village which is used mainly by stupid and belligerent drivers who seem intent only in getting from A to B as quickly as possible. Those who live in the village and the mothers who take their children to school have to suffer the dangerous consequences.
Can the problem be solved?
Yes. A recent meeting at the Social Centre ñ attended by our local 'representatives' ñ voted by an overwhelming majority to close the High Street to through traffic. This would, at a stroke:
o Provide safety for pushchairs and pedestrians
o Allow better access to local shops
o Provide a better quality of life for local people
o Prevent HGVs from using the village centre
o Force car drivers away from the village on to the bypass
The solution would be to construct a new roundabout at, say, the Bartlow junction on the bypass, taking through traffic and HGVs along a more straight and modern road away from the village. Rising bollards (emergency vehicles) at, say, Coles Lane would make the system work. The Highways Authority say this will cost £500,000 and they cannot afford it. Why have they apparently just spent £200,000 on a slip road into the garage? How many millions have the roadwork's at Whittlesford cost? Surely Linton deserves more consideration from the authorities ñ people come before cars.
Humps and chicanes are not what we want ñ they only lead to more noise and more pollution. A one-way system does nothing for pedestrians ñ it only benefits car drivers and encourages a racetrack that is already in use at nights!
Please continue your campaign to give us back our village we must be more important than cars.
M R K Holden


Dear Editor,
After reading the November issue of the Linton News I felt compelled to write this letter re our High Street. First I must emphasise I have considerable sympathy with Tracey Russell and the frustrations she has encountered. However, I also feel I must say, 'Why use the congested part of the High Street to take children to school when there are alternatives?' Alternatives, I might add, which are not only quieter, but also very attractive. These are Green Lane and Camping Close (a diagonal footpath across the meadow would shorten the walk), Horn Lane and the Church yard, Back Road ñ Coles Lane ñ Dodgers Lane into Church Lane.
These three all avoid the majority of the congestion and can be approached from various parts of the village, plus they offer interesting things to talk about on the way. Is life really so rushed that a few extra minutes can't be found to take perhaps a slightly longer but safer path?
The traffic is frustrating, ugly and damaging our beautiful High Street and its historic buildings, which surely are one of the great attractions of Linton. (Hopefully, measures will soon be taken to get traffic under control.) However, the buildings are not mobile, but we are! As Gandhi said, 'We must become the change we want to see. So take the scenic routes at busy times and enjoy the historic High Street when the rush hour is over.
Clare Neville

Using the High Street is like playing Russian roulette          Top

Dear Editor,
Although I don't live in Linton I have worked in the village for five years and have to use the High Street to get to work. Russian roulette, I am sure you will agree.
However, it isn't just the danger of it all which appals me, it is the sheer aggression shown by very many drivers.
We all know we must wait and allow oncoming traffic to come through if an obstruction is on our side and not theirs. Sadly there are numerous drivers who do not observe this simple courtesy, choosing instead to keep on as fast as they can, risking damage to cars and property.
Personally I would prefer to arrive at my destination with my car and my nerves intact. Is it the 'me first, me first' mentally showing here? Or are they just plain ignorant?
Janine Lawrence


Dear Editor,
As you are aware, Linton residents are suffering alarming dangers due to exceptional traffic conditions, mainly in the High Street. This has been on-going for some years and is getting worse. Something obviously needs to be planned and carried out before a serious accident or fatality occurs, as is surely the only outcome if we do nothing and refer the responsibility to someone else. It will take a combination of changes to achieve a satisfactory result and it is hoped, I am sure, that many people will put suggestions forward so that the best ideas can be put into practice to arrive at an agreeable solution for the safety of all.
For my part I would like to ask if the banning of all through traffic has been considered, buses included, as it seems these portray the biggest potential hazard to life and limb. Safe provision could be made to have three bus stops sited around the by-pass, one at the end of Mill Lane, another at the Bartlow Road junction and the third on Horseheath Road. There is already a suitable and sensible stop near the top of the High Street complete with layby, though this may require some improvement I dare say. It will mean people will have to walk further but at least they could do so in comparative safety.
I am a father and grandfather and don't want to be grieving over one of my children because the job was left to somebody else. Would you?
R G Bruce

Veterinary Services deliveries: “We are trying different routes”          Top

Dear Editor,
The article 'High Street 2002: one woman's diary' in the November edition of the Linton News begins with a reference to a delivery being made to the vets at the top end of the High Street. The article says that the driver reversed on the pavement and backed a six year old child against the wall.
I would like to point out that the driver has now left the company and I have been making the deliveries to the vets for some time. I wish to make this clear because the article says that 'the driver is now back regularly making the same manoeuvre'. I feel that it is important to note that although the article hints that I am the same driver, I am not. I would like it to be known that as a father of four small children I am very aware of people passing at the back of my van whilst I am reversing.
With reference to the question of whether deliveries can be made at a later time, this is not possible due to the route taken. However we are now trying a different route into the vets (via Back Road).
With the best of intentions at all times.
Justin Breckels
National Veterinary
We are grateful to Mr Breckels for writing and giving us the opportunity to correct last month's article. We apologise for the distress caused by this misunderstanding. LNT


AS regular readers will be aware, the November edition of the Linton News appeared in many households a week later than its official publication date. This has never happened before in the collective memory of the present committee, for whom missing deadlines is not an option.
The combination of absentee personnel and lengthy power cuts on two critical days for the paper’s production meant that the printers received copy two days late. Delayed delivery to our distributors, many of whom can only do the work at weekends, meant that in some areas papers did not arrive until the weekend of 9
th November. It has been uncomfortable hearing the disappointment of village residents and advertisers over this unavoidable delay, but one consolation is the proof of how popular and well-read our paper is.
Many people assume that committee members are paid for the work they do each month but this is not the case. Everybody who works on the Linton News is a volunteer. Our high standards of production are due to the investment we have made in computer hardware and software over the past few years and we have been lucky enough to have the free services of professional editorial and production staff as well.
The commitment of the paper’s volunteer staff is outstanding. On one memorable occasion earlier this year, four committee members worked into the night to be able to publish details of Linton’s Parish Council elections in the next edition of the paper. One found herself driving through the village in the small hours and her nightdress to deliver corrected proofs on time.
Working for the Linton News is hugely rewarding but with the recent retirement of two long-standing committee members we are feeling the effects of the reduction in our numbers. Ron Argent, who has been the Advertising Manager since the Linton News first appeared, retires this month and writes below about the responsibilities of this vital post, which brings in all the paper’s revenue.
But there are many other ways in which you can help the Linton News. We need to rebuild the committee urgently and would particularly welcome volunteers to expand our editorial and production teams. The present committee come from all walks of life and represent a wide age range. Many work full- or part-time, some are retired and several are involved with other local organisations. If you are interested in joining the Linton News team, please contact Hazel Olway Sally Simmons
or email LNT

PROFESSOR BARRY LEIGHTON 1920-2002          Top

IT was with sadness that we learned that Professor Barry Leighton has died after a long and depressing illness, which he bore with great fortitude.
Following a very successful and eminent career as a research orientated orthodontist at Kings College Hospital Dental School, Barry Leighton retired to Linton in the mid 1980s and rapidly became involved in village affairs.
He was foremost in the setting up of the local branch of EPIC (Emergency Planning in the Community) and subsequently became a member of Linton Parish Council in July 1988, a role in which he served for ten years until 1998.
During that period Barry was actively involved with the development of the Linton News and for many years he was the Parish Council reporter for the paper.
A regular supporter of the Parish Church and a founding Chairman of the Friends of S
t Mary’s, he was an active member of the Monday Gang whose responsibilities are the maintenance of the Churchyard.
As Parish Councillor he was a member of various committees and took a keen interest in the refurbishment of the Venture Playground.
We miss his wise counsel at the meetings of the Parish Council and we send our sympathy to Professor Leighton’s widow and family.
Brian Cox


A GROUP of Afghan journalists are visiting Britain to study English and to hone their journalistic skills. After a three week language refresher course at Bell School Saffron Walden, they move on to London as guests of the Reuters Foundation for a two week course which will cover aspects of radio, TV and press journalism. The group includes four women, none of whom was able to practise her profession under the Taliban regime. Their visit has attracted considerable media attention. Apart from a morning at Linton Village College, the journalists have toured the offices of BBC Cambridge and The Cambridge Evening News and will visit The Guardian and the BBC World Service before returning home in early December. Their programme culminates in a reception at the Foreign Office. They have been particularly fascinated by the technology available to their British colleagues. For many of them the Internet and e-mail are new discoveries which they hope to be able to make more use of on their return to Afghanistan. David Simmons

ON 12th November, 10 Afghan journalists visited Linton Village College. Their English was astoundingly good, and they were very willing to answer our questions and give their views. They had all experienced the restrictions of the Taliban regime and gave first hand information about their country. "Afghanistan you cannot compare to Great Britain," one man said. "Great Britain is great, Afghanistan is poor, broken and devastated…. Being here is a unique experience." According to him, the Western media give people a very negative view of Afghanistan. "But Afghan people have not just fought against their own enemies, they have fought against communism, drugs and terrorism for the world. They have a right to be helped."
I was struck by their thankfulness and hope for a better future. They were wonderful people, and their visit to our school has reshaped my opinion of Afghanistan.
Niels Meissner


FOR more than fifteen years, that is ever since the birth of the Linton News, I have been responsible for selling advertising space in both the paper and the calendar, or planner if you prefer to call it that.
Unfortunately, for health reasons, I now have to hand over to somebody else so the committee has asked me to give you some idea of what is involved. First of all I must make it clear that everyone on the team is a volunteer so if you are looking for a paid job, read no further. But you can claim expenses although these won’t amount to much – postage, telephone, triplicate books, and receipts books. The paper lives on its adverts, and there is no other source of income. We have devised a scale of charges, which reflect the size of the advert and the number of insertions required. Any prospective customer is informed of these and then invited to decide precisely what he wants by the deadline, which is always to be found on the back page of the paper.
At the end of a series of three, six or 12 advertisements it is necessary to invite the customer to renew, and this means sending a notice or calling.
I’ve enjoyed this work because it has enabled me to meet all sorts of interesting people throughout the village. So who would like to take over from me? I’ll be happy to give you a detailed briefing and to work with you for a few months. So if the idea appeals, please contact me
Ron Argent


John, Chris and Karen Negus digging in at Chalklands
THE people of Chalklands have been planting spring bulbs again. Many residents were so pleased with the daffodils last spring and expressed a wish to plant more. The money was raised by Cherry Fisher, who held a coffee morning. Approximately 4,000 bulbs have been planted by a team of residents who were able to benefit from the expert help of John Negus.
A Chalklands resident was rewarded for his beautiful garden. South Cambridgeshire District Council awarded Stan Page , 2
nd prize in the Sheltered Houses section of their best kept garden competition.
Chalklands Residents Association are also working on a larger project: to redesign the unsightly steps and railings at the entrance to Chalklands that lead up to the bungalows on the west side and if sufficient funds are raised, a carved stone Chalklands sign set into the bank. The project has received a great deal of support from the Parish Council and South Cambridgeshire District Council. They have recognised the effort that Chalklands people are making to improving our environment and contributing to the beauty of our village. Residents have also been encouraged by the kind and generous donations received from The Dog & Duck, The Village Pharmacy, Gary Hall Insurance, Linton Paving Company, The Darryl Nantais Gallery and Sweet Talk News.
Maureen Williams


THE sale of Christmas cards and gifts in aid of Save The Children which was held at The Old Guildhall on November 2nd raised a total of £390. Thanks to all those who supported this event.
Judith White % 894447

ALL CHANGE AT LA4Y           Top

LIZ Govier, LA4Y's senior youth worker, left us in October. Liz had been with us since the start back in 1997, we owe her a great debt of thanks for all the hard work and commitment she has shown over the years. Whatever success we have had, and there has been a great deal, is largely due to Liz with the support of Jim Kimber and more recently Bev Reynolds. Liz will be a very difficult act to follow.
However, the work must go on, so I am very pleased to report that at the beginning of November Hazel Savage took on the task of leading LA4Y as Youth Work Manager. Hazel lives in Balsham and comes to us as a seasoned youth worker. Most recently she has been helping to run a drop-in on the Arbury Estate in the City, so the challenges facing her in Linton will come as no surprise.
Whilst we have been reorganising our staffing arrangements it has not been possible to open the Drop-in for our usual four evening sessions per week. In particular we have had to drop most Saturday openings. From December we hope to be able to return to a full programme including weekend opening.
LA4Y is much more than just the Drop-in; we continue with our individual work with young people and now with families. Our family support worker Lesley Silk has been so much in demand that we are looking for an assistant to help her cope. Our thanks to the South Cambs Community Safety Partnership which has agreed to fund a part-time post for a year. They have also generously provided the opportunity for us to take on more youth work staff to work on a drugs prevention project. We continue to serve the community and look forward to expanding our activities.
John Batchelor

MEN (AND BOYS) ONLY          Top

YOU may be aware of a great change in the old video shop in the High Street. This is due to a new male haven taking shape in the village. BOYS 2 MEN is the name of the barber shop to be opened on 7th December and is the venture of Simon Pettit and Nina Dye, both Linton residents, who have an exciting sense of fun and style, as the décor will confirm. Simon and Nina want their clients to be able to relax (especially the Mums when bringing the little ones in), so they will operate on a 'no appointments necessary' basis, which should prove to be a challenge for them, but also ensure a fast, efficient service for the fellas! I am sure you will join me in wishing them both the very best for the future. Kim Warner % 893379


THE Christingle service will be held at 3pm on 8th December at St Mary's . All children, parents and grandparents are welcome to attend. Wrapped presents for the Women's Refuge would be welcome, and please bring your Children's Society boxes to the service for the annual counting. Counting day is Tuesday 10th December at 89 Bartlow Road. If you cannot attend the service, please bring your box to the church on a Sunday, or contact Janet Annett on % 891416.


LINTON Mobile Warden Scheme held another Social Club event on 22nd October, when over 40 people gathered for a fish and chip lunch. Everyone was in good spirits and gave a warm reception to the guest speaker, Christina Rees, who spoke as the 'Sea Urchin' giving an exciting account of her childhood at sea. The dangers of her life and difficulties in providing food and education for the family sounded daunting, but this upbringing has made her deeply observant and aware of the natural world. Christina brought along an amazing array of seashells, part of a collection gathered since childhood ñ and she let us play with them!
There was a raffle, with prizes donated by John Norris and Chapter and Verse. This is not just for fun; the proceeds will help to fund events after the Millennium grant has been spent. Events will remain free as long as resources allow. We also took bookings for the SCDC Christmas concert, LMWS funding the coach ñ a pleasant joint venture!
On the Warden scheme generally, we have passed another hurdle in applying for charitable status, and hope soon to be fully registered as a charity. The Warden scheme has proved most popular and useful, helped by the personality and capability of the Warden, and is over-subscribed with a waiting list. The Social Club is helping to provide more activities in the village. Both aspects are dependent upon raising money to pay for services, so another round of funding applications has started.
The next trip will be to Scotsdale's Christmas display, with afternoon tea, on Tuesday 3
rd December (names to Gill % 891001 or Enid % 891069). All older people are welcome, not just those involved with the scheme, but anyone who might like to meet a more extensive group of people. We are now planning events for 2003, so your ideas for these are welcome.
We will keep you informed of planned events through the Linton News, but keep an eye on the notice boards for further information and details of transport.
Hazel Lunan


MEMBERS of the Camera Club had a digital session at their November meeting, with Mike Crofts outlining the main elements of digital cameras and talking about manipulating the images. The next meeting, on 8th December, will be an awayday to a car racing and wrecking event at Mildenhall for action and character photography. Everyone welcome. Phone % 894948 or email for details.
John Keeble


LINTON Village College is hosting part of the Kettle's Yard exhibition, 'Light Spells' from 25th November until 19th December. The exhibition is of some of the photographs taken at Kettle's Yard during the course of a year, from the shortest day to shortest day. The photographers are Kathryn Faulkner and Graham Murrell.
The exhibition is in the Chilford room at the College. Please telephone Sue Albrow in the Community Education office on
892400 for more details.
Sue Albrow

K-CLUB WINNERS          Top

WINNERS of the K-Club November monthly draw:1st (£50) Mrs E Manfredi (No. 358); 2nd (£25) Mrs Karen Coote (No. 379); 3rd (£10) Mr Dean Clark (No. 060).

the bush telegraph          Top

ONE of the tremendous benefits that follows from working closely with a school in the developing world, as LVC does with Boepathutse School in South Africa, is that your presumptions are constantly being challenged. This is the best antidote to complacency I know. As an example, we, that is LVC and Boepathutse are developing a major project in the township of Soshanguve that will result in a new arts and technology centre there to encourage better teaching, training of teachers and courses for unemployed and unskilled adults. We have the support of the Boepathutse Governors, the local community and the District (equivalent to the LEA). There is little money to support the scheme so serious fundraising has begun in both communities. At first it is hard to take in how little money there is in the developing world for a project like this. Another school in Soshanguve that the Meadow School, Balsham is working with, began life with no buildings at all, just a tree for shade. They then moved to two old buses and currently use four rusting containers. They have a computer but it has no 'insides'. The childrens' I.T. experience involves filing past and touching the keyboard. They have no water, electricity or telephone. The contrast with our own situation is stark. Even as Cambridgeshire schools head for their worst budget settlement in ten years (more of that in January!) LVC has just gained approval for a major development of our community sports facilities. Providing a component Lottery grant comes in, investment approaching a million pounds will lead to huge improvements for pupils and the community. The development will comprise a state of the art floodlit Astroturf multi-games pitch, a resurfaced all weather multi court area (on our existing floodlit surface), new changing facilities in the sports hall and gym and a much larger fitness suite with its own entrance, changing and relaxation areas. This is a very exciting and ambitious development jointly funded by South Cambridgeshire District Council, Cambridgeshire LEA, the Football Foundation and LVC itself. We are currently seeking sponsors to help us upgrade equipment, particularly in the fitness suite. We hope the new facilities will be in operation by Spring 2004 and as soon as detailed drawings have been completed we will display them in the Sports Centre foyer so everyone can see what is proposed. Meanwhile we will work hard to keep the other project on task ñ a plain block built building with a tin roof and concrete floors in Soshanguve ñ a world away. C R Bush, Principal

utterly butterfly          Top

WHO would have thought that butterflies have such a hard struggle just to exist? So many predators are waiting to attack them at any stage of their life cycle and humans too have played their part by ploughing up fenland, decimating peat bogs or replacing deciduous trees with conifers. Last month Mr Richard Revels, a naturalist and wildlife photographer, brought this into clear focus with his excellent slides of lepidoptera and their habitats. These creatures fight back by being masters of camouflage and disguise but some rather gory shots showed their unpleasant fates making us wonder that we ever see any butterflies at all. Thankfully we do and one particularly revealing close-up showed that their wings consist of small scales which look rather like layers of sequins.
r Revels reminded anyone whose shed has played host to hibernating butterflies to open a window in spring to allow them to escape.
The December meeting of the Gardening Club will be the usual informal evening viewing members' slides and imbibing Cynthia's delicious mulled wine. We are expecting some visitors whom we hope will be encouraged to join us for next year's gatherings.

Gloria Fidler

LINTON COUNTRY DIARY by Darryl Nantais  Illustrated by Maureen Williams          Top

IT took a visit to what I am told is the largest church in England (for the size of the village in which it is situated) to unblock my writers' block. Inside was Jack, a well travelled man of senior years with whom I instantly had great rapport. As a psychologist he explained his main field of interest and work was child behaviour and communication. The interesting thing was he said 'very young children don't use words but body language, movements such as facial expressions'. It was then I noticed a rather tatty but beautifully painted religious scene in which the characters depicted had not a single wrinkle or frown line. Nor any extreme expression. For some reason my mind wandered to the memory of an incident I witnessed some time ago. Perhaps it was the silver snail trail cris-scrossing the painting and reflecting iridescent colours that led to my flighty pen's activity, or was it considering a world in which all the animals spoke English? We must go back two summers and twenty yards from Swan Bridge. A mallard caught my attention by its strange and unusual movements. As I drew closer it became apparent that a male strutted close by a female. Closer still I stopped and watched. The male duck, colourful and strikingly handsome straddled the female, pulling gently on her neck even though she was lying very flat to the ground. Closer still, I saw she was injured with blood staining the grass and I realised the female was already dead. Judging by the type of injury she had been run over. I watched for twenty minutes as the male tried in vain to resurrect his mate by holding her head up time after time. His admirable insistence was a pitiful sight of failure. He tried carefully to raise her head by pulling the back of her neck feathers but of course as soon as he let go, the head would flop to the ground. Then, he would go in front and try pushing the head upright only to have no effect. It was, as I said a pitiful sight and brought a tear to my eye. Along the road sauntered a friend. He too stopped to watch this unusual event and expressed how, when we see such as this, one cannot accept anything other than it being a clear display of care and mourning. The duck began to walk in circles around his dead partner. Shoving and stroking with its beak as if willing life to return with occasional sounds in a particularly low key. Finally, exhausted and broken-hearted the bird displayed a certain acceptance of the situation. I moved the dead duck closer to the wall, away from the footpath as I felt its partner deserved the right to mourn its loss in peace and tranquillity, and the male followed head down and wings outstretched. It made several more attempts to raise its partner's head then finally settled down beside it, continuing its low moaning sounds of sadness. I stroked its head and imitated the moan and he went quiet. I turned to my friend 'The river has fallen now' I said on a more positive note. I then noticed the silvery trail of a snail up the tall red brick wall. My eyes followed its path, up and up. It's a long way I thought, as the snail disappeared over the top having made it's perilous journey to a new garden. I'm sure it was worth it!

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