Voice

of the Villages

Blog Pages

The articles featuring here either concern issues currently making the news, or which reflect the personal interests of contributors. If you would like to make a contribution, just let me know. It doesn’t have to be long, or illustrated – just interesting!

Just click anywhere in the boxes below to read that blog.

 

April Fools' Day

David Wray
March 26th, 2024

The exact origins of April Fools’ Day are uncertain, and there are several theories about how the tradition began. One popular belief is that it dates back to 16th-century France when the country switched from the Julian calendar to the Gregorian calendar, changing the date of New Year.

 

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The Asian Hornet Threat

Warwick and Leamington Beekeepers
March 26th, 2024

Asian hornets are an invasive, voracious predator of our pollinator insects including Honey Bees. Accidentally introduced into France in 2004, they have since spread Eastwards to Italy, South to Spain and Portugal and North to Germany Switzerland, Belgium, Holland and now, to the UK.

 

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Easter Memories

Wendy Green
March 20th, 2024

One of my earliest Easter memories as a family (in 1946?) is climbing up to the top of Newbold Comyn Hill come rain or shine (baby Margaret in a pushchair) to attend the Easter Sunrise Service on Easter Morning at 6 o’clock! A large cross, decorated with fresh flowers, had been fixed to the Beacon, which was not alight I hasten to add!

 

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The Ploughing Dilemma

Guy Singh-Watson
February 28th, 2024

Like many of you, I’m sure, I have my vegetables delivered every week by a company called Riverford (and wonderful they are too!). The head of this company, Guy Singh-Watson,  always writes a newsletter about farming issues, and includes it in the vegetable box. This month’s really intrigued me. It’s about ploughing.

 

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Happiness and success

David Wray
February 26th, 2024

Why are some people more successful than others? Talent, hard work, ambition, discipline or luck? That’s certainly not wrong. However, it seems that there may be another interesting cause of success. Happiness and success are directly related – but probably not in the way you might expect. Put simply: you don’t have to be successful to be happy, you have to be happy to be successful.

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Silver Jubilee 1977

Wendy Green
February 20th, 2024

It was about the middle of March 1977, chatting to neighbours, that we came up with the idea of having a  Silver Jubilee Street Party for the Queen here in the Radford Road.  We formed a Committee  – and I said I’d see to the music!  We set about having a weekly meeting which turned out to be the highlight of the week, a lot of fun and laughter, trying out various Punches, with someone’s delicious homemade cakes or cookies. Not mine, I just don’t feature in the kitchen!

 

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Valentines Day

David Wray
January 20th, 2024

Valentine’s Day, celebrated on February 14th each year, has its origins in both ancient and medieval times. It has evolved over centuries into the widely recognized celebration of love that we know today.

 

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Wintry Tales

Wendy Green
January 23rd, 2024

Back in the mid-70s I had a colourful very long Doctor Who scarf, and as I rushed out to go to work one morning, I slammed the front door with the end of my scarf still inside. I nearly strangled myself trying to reach my keys to release me from my front door, then drove to work laughing!

In the winter we would put a ground sheet over my car to keep it from freezing up, using a heavy garden fork to hold it in place. One morning, having hurriedly pulled the ground sheet off, I drove to the office. When I got there a smiling colleague came out to meet me and I thought how kind  ……. then she  asked me why I had a garden fork on the bonnet of my car – I think I pulled it off like a Magician with a tablecloth at a children’s party!

Eathorpe Christmas Lights

David Wray
January 20th, 2024

We have lived in Eathorpe for 25 years now and, as in all communities, we have seen several changes – new houses, new people, a brand new village hall and so on. But Eathorpe Christmas Lights have always been part of our experience of this village at Christmas. And the experience of lots of other people too, it seems. Village residents this year put up their lights around December 9th and they were lighting up the December sky until just after News Year’s Day.

 

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New Year celebrations around the world

David Wray
December 20th, 2023

The marking of a New Year is an age-old tradition around the world — common features of the celebrations are food, fireworks and reflection with friends and family. The forms and dates of these celebrations vary between different calendars, religions and cultures of course.

 

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Leamington Spa Illuminations 1952/3

Wendy Green
December 24th, 2023

Brian and I went into the town on a very cold night in January last year, a little late, to see The Christmas Lights in the town – really beautiful. This reminded me of the JEPHSON GARDENS ILLUMINATIONS back in 1952/53.  They were spectacular – almost every flower bed and  statue, tree and fence was adorned with thousands of coloured bulbs depicting famous legends, pictures and stories – they were amazing!

 

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Brits spend nearly 4 hours online every day

David Wray
December 28th, 2023

It appears that UK adults spent an average of 3 hours 41 minutes a  day online in May 2023, eight minutes longer than a year earlier. This amounts to 56 days a year online – two more than in May 2022.

The figures come from Ofcom’s Online Nation 2023 study, which analysed the behaviour of over 14,000 internet users aged between 13 and 84 during May.

 

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Telling the bees

David Wray
November 25th, 2023

There was a time when almost every rural British family who kept bees followed a strange tradition. Whenever there was a death in the family, someone had to go out to the hives and tell the bees of the terrible loss that had befallen the family. 

 

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Christmas Carols by Candlelight!!

Wendy Green
November 25th, 2023

As an Organist I was often asked to play for Brownies Christmas Carol Services in a village church nearby, so one year i arrived in plenty of time and found the Church in darkness.  I waited a while in the car, getting colder every minute – then realized this was the wrong church in the wrong village!

 

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Superfoods

David Wray
November 25th, 2023

For those of us wanting to improve our health, the idea of a ‘superfood’ as a one-stop shop for nutrition can be pretty appealing. But are ‘superfoods’ really the miracle-workers some claim them to be? Do superfoods really exist?

 

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Women and the Marathon

David Wray (from a BBC article)
October 25th, 2023

In 1966, a young woman named Roberta (Bobbi) Gibb applied for an official place in the Boston Marathon. Her application was refused but  a derogatory comment made her determined that she WOULD run the Boston Marathon whether they would let her or not.

 

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Family Hospitality

Wendy Green
October 25th, 2023

My 2 sisters & I were 4,8 and 11, just after the War, when Mum & Dad decided to invite a Jewish refugee from Czechoslovakia to share our home – she was called Margarita Hamerstein – Auntie Hamer to us children.

 

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Bonfire Night and Hallowe'en

David Wray
October 25th, 2023

Hallowe’en is celebrated each year on October 31, but the heavily-American influenced version we have nowadays disguises the much older tradition underpinning Hallowe’en – and other celebrations linked to it. 

 

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Happiness Hormones

David Wray

September 24th, 2023

Science tells us that it’s not your heart that controls your happiness. It’s your brain. Almost everything that makes you feel “happy” is linked to one of the four happiness hormones: dopamine, serotonin, endorphin and oxytocin.

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What's in a name?

Wendy Green

September 24th, 2023

I am the middle of 3 sisters, Julie, Wendy, and Margaret. JULIE means Youthful, Love’s Child. MARGARET means Pearl, Patron Saint of Expectant Mothers.

WENDY means? 

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What is a celebrant?

Lesley Coles

September 24th, 2023

Do you ever think “I wish I could do it my way?”  When you think about getting married, do you want your story told – of how you met, fell in love and the journey to your fantastic day?  When you are saying goodbye to a loved one or a friend, do you want to hear about them and their life so you can laugh and cry?  

 

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