The Duke of Edinburgh 1921-2021
Pershore Town Newsletter
Town Hall Opening Hours:
Monday – Thursday: 10:00am – 4:00pm
Friday: 10:00am – 1:00pm
Visitor Information, Pershore Library, Church Street: Mon-Sat incl.
Welcome from the Town Clerk…
Welcome to the Summer newsletter, written whilst we are all still in lockdown and living through such difficult times. The Town Council have been working from the beginning of the pandemic with Pershore Volunteer Centre and a wide range of volunteers, helping the more vulnerable in town, delivering shopping and prescriptions, phoning and chatting to those who are lonely, taking people to hospital appointments and generally working to try to make life a little bit easier for those who cannot even go out for a walk. We all hope that this will not go on for much longer but are also wise enough to know that any easing of restrictions will have to be undertaken carefully. The Town Council and Volunteer Centre expect to continue to help for some time to come so if you need us please do not hesitate to phone on 01386 561561 (Town Council) or 01386 554299 (Volunteer Centre). We will do everything we can to help you.
Ann Dobbins, Town Clerk
A Message from the Mayor and Mayoress…
Welcome to the Summer edition of our town’s newsletter. How different things are in Pershore since we wrote our message for the Spring edition. At that time we were all looking forward to the usual series of events that take place in our town through the Summer months. Suddenly everything changed, events were cancelled, pubs, clubs and shops were closed and we are all advised to socially distance ourselves from each other, not something Pershore people take on board easily. Then the true spirit of Pershore came to the fore, people started thinking ‘how can we help each other?’ And that is exactly what is happening right now. The events that would normally take place throughout our Summer months have, sadly, had to be cancelled. This will obviously have a significant effect on not only our enjoyment, but also on local trade which relies on those days when our town is bustling with visitors. Let’s hope that we have a big come-back in 2021. The current lock-down is meaning that the Town Council has had to adjust its way of working. The Town Hall has been closed to the public in line with other similar organisations but staffing levels have been retained with telephones manned as normal. During this lock-down period we are hoping to refurbish both the Town Hall and the Library; it is hoped this will avoid any inconvenience to the many users of those buildings. Councillors and staff are still in regular contact with each other using electronic media. Finally, I would like to pass on my sincere thanks to our Town Clerk and all those residents who are going the extra mile to help those more vulnerable members of our community. Life in our town will return to normal, we just hope that it’s not too long.
Chris and Jan Parsons
The Lockdown - Poem
Remember how things used to be
As we walked around our town
Met people with a smiling face
Those faces now, they frown
Where once we used to stop and chat
We now must stay apart
Two metres is the closest
By this we’re being smart
We wonder what tomorrow brings
Will things be better then
Life will return to how it was
It’s just a question, when
Let’s not forget the NHS
It’s there if we should call
Doctors, nurses, working hard
We thank them one and all
How can we fill the hours each day
We’ve time to spare at last
Those little jobs will now be done
Without our being asked
Dust off those games and jigsaws
Enjoy some family time
Or maybe sit and read a book
Helped with a favourite wine
The planes that normally fill the sky
Are firmly on the ground
No cars and lorries thundering past
But do we miss that sound
So many acts of kindness
Are happening every day
Food and medicine to your door
Delivered, come what may
A stranger may give you a call
Every day or so
These people are not strangers now
Just friends you didn’t know
There will be some among us
Whose lives this virus claims
We think of them with heavy heart
We may not know their names
Things will be better one day soon
If we stay firm and strong
We don’t know when this day will come
We hope it’s not too long
There will be life after lockdown
Annual Report from the Town Mayor 2020
Councillor Chris Parsons MBE
I would normally be writing this report to be presented at our annual Town Meeting. Unfortunately due to the current Coronavirus crisis, such meetings have been cancelled, but it is only right that we should reflect on the past year.
Town Council Finances
Please see below charts showing how the Council has spent your money during the year to 31st March 2020. If you would like more detailed information, or a set of the accounts, please contact the Town Clerk after the end of May.
Meetings of the Town Council and Committees
PLEASE NOTE THAT AT THE TIME OF THIS NEWSLETTER ALL MEETINGS HAVE BEEN CANCELLED. HOWEVER, SHOULD IT BE DECIDED TO HOLD VIRTUAL MEETINGS USING VIDEO CONFERENCING, THIS WILL BE ANNOUNCED ON OUR WEBSITE AND THE MEETING IDENTIFICATION CODE AND PASSWORD WILL BE MADE AVAILABLE TO THOSE RESIDENTS WISHING TO ATTEND. PLEASE KEEP AN EYE ON THE MEETINGS PAGE OF OUR WEBSITE FOR UPDATES ON THIS.
What the Town Council does
The Town Council owns and manages:-
- Riverside land at King George’s Field and Avon Meadows
- Grassed play area at Cherry Orchard
- Allotments in Defford Road Pershore
- Cemetery and car park
- Town Hall and walkway
- Pershore Library and Visitor Information Centre
- Land off Holloway – available to walkers for picnics and a rest area
- Small area of land adjacent to Holloway
- White Railings moorings (leased to A.N.T.)
The Town Council controls and manages:–
- St Andrews Gardens
The Town Council provides:-
- Street lighting in residential areas
- Bus Shelters Vehicle Activated signs
- Town Clock on the Town Hall
- Benches and litter bins
- Flower tubs, hanging baskets and floral displays
- Christmas lights
- Grants to local organisations
- Free accommodation at the Library and a grant to the Citizens Advice Bureau, reviewed annually
- Rooms in the Town Hall and the Library for hire to local groups in the town
- Exchanges, through the Twinning and Tourism Committee, to our twin towns
- The Visitor Information Centre at the Library
- The land for the Riverside Youth Centre on a lease
- The land for Pershore Town Football Club on a lease
- The land for the Leisure Centre on a lease
- Some of land occupied by the Avon Meadows wetlands
- Free accommodation for the Heritage Centre
Pershore Heritage and History Society
The Bloxham Family, Shop Keepers in Bridge Street ,Pershore.
We start the story of this family in the Worcestershire Chronicle in May 1903, George Irving Bloxham was charged with selling underweight bread on April 14th. P.C. Harford deposed (testified) in buying a loaf of bread from defendant’s wife for 2 ½ p. The loaf was not weighed, and he took it to Inspector Ed. Poulson at the Police Station who said that he found it weighed 1 lb 14oz, being 2oz deficient. George I. Bloxham stated that the loaf was made from an old piece of dough to be used for themselves, but his wife sold it in the shop. This was the first time he had been charged in the Court during 22 years. Inspector Poulson said the proceedings were taken because of numerous complaints made in the division. The defendant was fined 30s and 8s 6d costs. Sadly, in the Evesham Journal on November 1905, his mother the wife of William Bloxham died. The deceased was in her 76th year, and in a short time the aged couple would have celebrated their golden wedding anniversary. Mrs. Bloxham was an old and highly esteemed member of the Broad Street Baptist Church. The service was conducted by the Re. J. Dolphin. “Anne Bloxham died November 6th 1905.” A great deal of sympathy felt by the townspeople with Mr. G. Irving Bloxham of Bridge Street in the death of his daughter May Elizabeth Bloxham aged 12 years, who died on Wednesday week after a short illness. Mary was at school on the Friday previous so her illness was only four days in duration. There was a large gathering at the cemetery and the service was conducted by the Rev. W. Hatch. Six boys officiated as bearers. On Tuesday morning Mr. William Bloxham of Bridge Street a highly esteemed retired tradesman of Pershore was struck down with paralysis rendering the whole side of his body absolutely powerless. The attack was quite sudden, Mr. Bloxham being out in the town in his usual health a minute or two previous. He was 81 years of age. Irving G. Bloxham married Fanny Arnall 13 July 1892, and Fanny died 15 November 1899, they had two children May Elizabeth (b.1893) and Arnall Irving William Henry (b.1896). He married again to Florence Agnes Warner 1902 reg. Tewksbury. Florence A. Bloxham died November 28 1955. Their children were Ernest George (b.1903) and Audley James (b.1905). Irving George Bloxham died February 9th 1929 aged 71 years.
Written by Anthony Wittenberg
The Mayor Remembers VE 75
As part of a day long, series of virtual events to celebrate the anniversary on VE Day on Friday 8th May, the Town Council uploaded a number of video messages from the Mayor of Pershore, Cllr Chris Parsons, to their website. These included a message to local residents and the placing of a wreath at break of day (to ensure social distancing) on the wall of the Town Hall, next to the plaque remembering all those who served in the Second World War. He was accompanied by the Mayoress, The Town’s Standard Bearer carrying the Union Standard and the Town Crier. Finally the Mayor and Mayoress toasted the Nation at 3.00pm from their garden at home. The Mayor and Mayoress, along with the whole Town Council send their wishes to everyone to keep safe and well in the days to come.
People of Pershore Rise to the Challenge
Before the lock down started Pershore Volunteer Centre, the Town Council, police and churches met to consider how they could help with what they knew would be a challenging time for everyone. A leaflet was printed by the Town Council and delivered to every house in Pershore, seeking volunteers to help our community during this crisis. We also reached out to people in the surrounding villages. The response has been overwhelming. More than 85 new volunteers from Pershore and 50 from the villages have come forward. When these new volunteers are added to our 90 existing volunteers, we have a small army ready, willing and able.
Our Social Car Scheme drivers would normally be ferrying around 125 people per week to their various medical appointments. The majority, but not all, of these appointments have been cancelled, so we continue to provide this vital service. Changes in treatment practices means that our team is now also collecting vital medication, from as far away as Dudley Hospital, enabling house-bound patients to access life-saving treatments.
Our minibus which normally provides transport for people to take them on their weekly shopping trip, has been replaced with a team of volunteers who undertake personalised shopping trips and prescription deliveries – over 400 so far. Many of these volunteers are new to Pershore Volunteer Centre. They are welcome and we thank them.
Although the fortnightly Lunch Club in St Andrew’s has been suspended, we, together with the new Here4U team, are ensuring that our clients are contacted regularly to ensure they are OK. This may be a simple telephone call or a friendly wave through the window. Pershore community is endeavouring to ensure that no one in our area feels a sense of isolation.
It is heartening to see the many organisations working in Pershore and the surrounding area to support our community – far too many to mention by name. The people of Pershore and the surrounding villages have really shown how they can help in their local communities.
Finally let us all remember, and be thankful, for those working in the NHS, care homes, the emergency services and other key workers, without whom we could not survive.
If you can help or if you need help and have not already contacted us here at the Volunteer Centre, please ring us on 01386 554299 or if you would like to support us financially please go to Charities Aid Foundation and search for Pershore and District Volunteer Centre. Everyone should feel proud of what is being done by so many in Pershore and the surrounding areas.
Thank you. Eric Wiles, Chair Pershore and District Volunteer Centre
Avon Meadows is open for business provided we all obey the Government’s recommendations, one visit per day and no closer than 2 metres from anyone you do not live with. Activities that involve individuals walking alone can continue so it is hoped that we can continue the butterfly and dragonfly monitoring. Bird monitoring is continuing on Thursday mornings.
Surveys and Sightings BIRDS NOTE: No Government guidelines have been breached in producing this information.
Weekly Bird Count In spite of all we are managing to count the birds each Thursday. Those of us who are part of the usual Thursday Group go out individually at convenient times on Thursday as part of their daily exercise and their observations are combined to contribute to our records. Experience is showing that this system is working well and the results compare well with those taken in normal times. The birds generally did not like the wet winter although our resident species were much in evidence and there were very few surprises. The counts over the last 3 months have varied between 39 and 51 species each week Total year count 86 to date. High winds over Greece on 5-6 April killed large numbers of Swallows and Swifts returning to northern Europe for the summer. They were being found dead on the ground over a large part of the country. It is too early to say whether this event will affect populations on Avon Meadows. Interesting or Unusual Species Common Grasshopper Warbler A short burst of song was heard on 15 April and a huge surprise. Is this the first spring record for this species ? The previous two were in June 2013 and 2014. By 21 April it was estimated that at least 4 birds were present.
A Willow Warbler, a species which passes through Avon Meadows each spring in small numbers. Note the prominent eyebrow, pink legs and relatively long wings, all things that show it to be different from a Chiffchaff.
Phots Jeff Steady LRPS
Sedge Warbler (left) and a Grasshopper Warbler (right) in April on Avon Meadows. They look easy to distinguish here do they not, but not when they are dodging about in thick reeds!
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