Archive for November, 2014

Grand Opening of Winter Wonderland at Hayling Funfair – 23rd November

November 28, 2014

Winter Wonderland 2

You don’t have to be a child to be enthralled with this!   When Father Christmas arrived being drawn by huskies on a ‘sleigh’ in the pouring rain the children were so excited and rushed to meet him. The huskies were removed and taken under cover then Father Christmas and I cut the ribbon to open Winter Wonderland. There had been a radio competition and a little girl won this and was to be the first person after me to see this year’s Winter Wonderland.

This year Father Christmas was being helped by elves, one of which was Lenny the Learner Elf! This Elf has been trying to pass his exams for many years and this year good luck Lenny – try and qualify this year! I was taken around by Molly another Elf who made sure that we saw everything there was to see including this year’s brand new feature of a Gingerbread House and a visit to Father Christmas’s grotto.

I can only say a huge thank you to James Cogger for inviting me – it was a fantastic start to my Christmas!

Winter Wonderland 1

Switch on of Christmas Lights at Waterlooville – 22nd November

November 28, 2014

We were taken by horse drawn carriage from Wicks car park up Maurepas Way and thence into the London Road. What a sight we beheld, thousands of people waiting expectantly for Father Christmas to arrive with me to turn on the lights. The Waterlooville Forum Events Team did an incredible job, the organisation was so good. The characters from Frozen were around Waterlooville all day which encouraged footfall all the day long, By the time we got there it is estimated there were around 4,500 people watching. Great excitement on behalf of the children there were so excited seeing all the Disney characters, and Father Christmas. It was a privilege to be invited to do the countdown along with Richard Shaw to the lights being switched on.   They are lovely – well done to all the Waterlooville shops and businesses who supported. It is so appreciated.

Mill Hill Primary School Christmas Fete – 22nd November

November 28, 2014

I don’t believe I have ever seen a school fete with so many stalls. The school was vibrant and incredibly active with all sorts of things going on including live music.

I was shown around by a young person called Matthew, who was very attentive and made sure that we were accompanied at all times and went into every room and I mean every room as there were so many stalls and attractions. Well done Mill Hill Primary School!

School Oyster Film – 21st November

November 28, 2014

Emsworth Museum

Having attended the launch of the main Oyster Film on the 25th September it gave me enormous pleasure to attend the new film created by children from St James Primary School, Emsworth.   They did a fantastic job from research, script, directing, and acting.

The film tells the story of the unfortunate demise of the Oyster industry in Emsworth. This film is going to be kept in perpetuity for schools to use as a teaching aid and will be showing at the Emsworth Museum along with the original film by Millstream Productions.

Well done to the children for all their hard work!

Visit to Havant Borough Talking News Recording Studio – 20th November

November 28, 2014

Talking News 1

I was invited to the studio run by the volunteers who put together this newspaper. It was fascinating to find out how this really worthwhile facility is created. I was told how the paper is researched, edited, recorded and copied by volunteers who work so hard for the community. I had the privilege of recording a message and a Christmas wish for the next edition.

Unfortunately numbers of recipients have dwindled over the last few years so if you know of any resident who is either blind or partially blind who could benefit from this facility please get in touch with them and they will be only too pleased to help.   Havant Borough Talking Newspaper contact 023 9248 0101 or by e mail

Some facts below:-

Audio News for the Blind

–   Every 14 days 60 minutes of Audio local News, every Quarter an audio magazine

–   Produced by over 50 volunteers

–   Mailed to 150 Listeners in the Borough

–   Expenditure last year – £8,000

–   ‘Boom Box’ – £24 for listening

–   Seeking Volunteers and Funds

–   ‘No regular income, all raised by fundraising’

Talking News 2

Talking News 3

Kumon Annual Awards Ceremony – 15th November

November 20, 2014

I was asked to attend this and give out medals and certificates to all the children, ranging from 3 years upwards.

As a past teacher education is of particular interest to me and it is vital that children are given the opportunity to reach their full potential. Any help in this direction is always a great commitment on the part of the children and parents. There were obviously many proud parents and children in the audience this afternoon and I would like to congratulate them all on their tremendous achievements.

Congratulations and good luck for the future to both the organisation and the pupils.

Havant Camera Club’s Members Exhibition – 14th November

November 20, 2014

I was invited to open the exhibition – this year the title was ‘no title’ which meant that the members could photograph anything and display at the exhibition which resulted in a marvellously diverse exhibition. What talent we have overall in the Borough of Havant. It was a privilege to be invited and thank you for giving me this opportunity, I enjoyed it so much.

Energie Fitness Fundraising event for Children In Need – 14th November

November 20, 2014

Energie Fitness

I was delighted to start the Children in Need Day with a visit to Energie Fitness in Havant. What fun – I even went on a piece of equipment! The idea of the event was to raise funds they hoped to raise £500. The Co-op had created a beautiful wooden toy box which was filled with soft toys and others and these along with the box were being given to the new Smile respite centre soon to be opened in Waterlooville.

By the end of the day Energie Fitness had raised a grand total of £1072.56! Well done to Cheryl and all the staff and their customers.

Energie Fitness 2

Junior Citizen ‘Thinksafe’ at Fort Purbrook – 13th November

November 20, 2014

I went to Fort Purbrook today when Queens Inclosure School, Waterlooville went along to take part in the Safer Havant Partnerships Junior Citizen ‘Thinksafe’.

The year 6 pupils went through 6 scenarios, posing life-like situations for the children to experience.

The scenarios were so life-like and were designed to help children to see dangers in all kinds of situations raising their awareness of dangers alongside teaching them valuable life skills. I think the children will remember these because they were ‘experiencing’ them rather than being ‘ told ‘.

It was such a valuable experience for the children and they were obviously enraptured the whole time. Well done Havant Safer Partnership.

Havant Remembers – 11th November

November 20, 2014

Havant Remembers

This was a special afternoon of Reflection in the year that marks the 100th Anniversary of the outbreak of the First World War and the 70th anniversary of D Day which was held at the Public Service Plaza.

It was an opportunity for the Borough Council to thank all the local community groups and organizations that have held events and activities carried out in the ‘spirit of Remembrance’, specifically to remember the generation of 1914 – 1918 who lived through the Great War.

As part of the programme we were entertained by the Three Belles and Jim Booth who was part of the team that lead a secret underwater mission ahead of the D-Day invasions gave a talk about his memories and experiences.

Havant Remembers 2

Dedication of Additional Memorial Plaques at St Mary’s Church, Hayling Island – 11th November

November 20, 2014

St Marys

A beautiful service was held at St Mary’s Church, Hayling Island where a plaque was dedicated to the 24 men killed in action in World War One.   These 24 men for some reason, were never included on the plaques already in the church commemorating the dead of Hayling Island. Research by the U3A on Hayling Island revealed their names.

Two schools sent pupils to this service and 24 of the pupils lit a candle each to mark each name.   This was a very moving ceremony.

Remembrance Sunday Parade and Service at St Faiths Church, Havant – 9th November

November 13, 2014

Every year there are several parades and services throughout the Borough. This year it was my privilege to represent the Borough at the service at St Faiths Church, Havant.   It began with a short service at the War Memorial outside the church, where over 1,000 attended to pay their respects including many uniformed groups of children as well as representatives from 47 Regiment who have the Freedom of the Borough. Many wreaths were laid at the war memorial before going into the church for the main service.

The Lord Lieutenant of Hampshire was represented by one of the Deputy Lieutenants, Myrddin Rees Esq DL MS FRCS.   As part of the service 6 candles were relit – these were the candles that were lit during the Civic Vigil held on the 3rd August this year – symbolising hope for a world without war.

After the service all were invited back to the Royal British Legion Headquarters in Havant for a reception. This was a nice ending which gave an opportunity for all to mingle, talk and reflect.

The Mystery of Edwin Drood by Hayling Musical Society – 7th November

November 13, 2014

In old fashioned music hall style this was a laugh and a teaser.   The audience was asked many questions such as, ‘Who Killed Edwin Drood’?   This is loosely based on Charles Dickens unfinished novel. T the strong vocal abilities of this group are renowned and certainly this was the case tonight.

We chose along with others to have a meal prior to the show this was very pleasant and set the evening off to a great start.

When the curtain went up we were in the ‘The Music Hall Royale’ and were entertained by an ‘over the top’ band of actors performing as they would have in the old fashioned music hall of days of yore!   By the end of the first act questions were being asked and the audience participation began.

What a lovely evening we had – great fun and we enjoyed every moment. After the end of the show we went backstage   to meet the cast and behind the scenes members.



Hampshire Schools’ Sports Federation Outstanding Young Sportsperson of the Year Awards Presentation – 6th November

November 13, 2014

I went to the Ashburton Hall in Winchester for this presentation.

The hall was packed with youngsters who had been nominated for awards together with family members and other dignitaries. Our host for the evening was Daisy Robinson (nee Brockman) who had been an Olympic Torch Bearer and Games Maker in 2012.   One of the very special guests was Kelly Simm (gold medallist in Glasgow 2014) – both of these people are/were Hampshire based.

I experienced great pride when a very young man Jack Helps from Oaklands Catholic School and Six Form College took the Gymnastics award, Tom Power from Havant 6th Form College took the award for Trampoline and then Jimmy Yeung from Havant Sixth Form College again took the award for Table Tennis. These youngsters exude such talent and promise for the future. In fact well done to all those nominated as well!

Bonfire Night on Stockheath Common – 5th November

November 13, 2014

It is traditional for the Mayor to light the bonfire at Stockheath Common. It was a lovely dry night, not too cold and to my amazement there must have been thousands of people on the common to enjoy the event.   At first I thought the bonfire was not going to ignite properly, I should have known better because after a few hiccups it was ablaze!   A very well organised event with some superb fireworks it seemed to be enjoyed by all there with lots of ‘oohs and aahs’ from the crowd including me!   Well done Havant Borough Council!

I was delighted to be re-acquainted with Ashley Bowden who was there – a youngster who I had first met back in the summer when we went to the open day at Billy’s Lake.   I was pleased to be able to invite Ashley to join us in the enclosure to watch the fireworks as he had looked after me on two previous occasions.