If eating chips and drinking cider were sports, I could have been a contender. Proper sports? Not so much. I come from a family for whom sport is purely a spectating-and-gambling affair. And, even though I showed a fondness for sprinting back in my youth, since discovering boys (and, later, smoking) in my early teens, the distance between myself and my gym kit has stretched. However, this is not cool. Female role models – including athlete Hannah England – are everywhere.
When I spoke to Hannah (see Talking Point), she put me to shame with her inspiring can-do attitude and discipline and now I’m resolved to get active – perhaps I’ll start by running to the nearest beer garden? Baby steps...
When I spoke to Hannah (see page 26), she put me to shame with her inspiring can-do attitude and discipline and now I’m resolved to get active – perhaps I’ll start by running to the nearest beer garden? Baby steps...
The next meeting of the Caversham Allotment Association is on Tuesday 9th June at Church House in, you guessed it, Caversham (next to Waitrose). The speaker will be Michael Keith Lucas who will talk about Gardening in a Changing Climate – a subject that should be of interest to most gardeners. The talk starts at 7.30pm and there are refreshments and a raffle. Entrance is free. Contact Carol Wheeler on 01189 475802 for further details. Don’t forget that Church House now has a lift which will appeal to all those who were prevented from attending in the past due to the stairs.
Caversham and Chiltern Flower Club are gearing up to present Annette Parshotam, who shall be demonstrating some floral arrangements with the thoroughly intriguing theme ‘Hollywood meets Bollywood’. Make a date for Annette on June 10th at 7.30pm at the Methodist Church in Highmoor Road, Caversham, RG4 7BG. Entrance fee is £5.50 for visitors. For more details, you are welcome to call Shirley Sexton on 01189412329.
Fair and fete season is well and truly upon us. Sonning Common Primary School is holding a summer fair on Saturday, 13th June, from 12noon to 3pm. This year’s theme is ‘The Great Outdoors’ and there will be many crafts that children can take part in, helping them learn skills and then taking their creations home, which is always very rewarding. There will also be the traditional attractions including maypole dancing, a bouncy castle, bar and barbecue to name a few.
Caversham will be celebrating the 800th anniversary of Magna Carta with a small exhibition in the 17th century gazebo at Caversham Court. The link is William Marshal, the lord of the manor of Caversham, who was an intermediary between King John and the rebel barons, and who was regent for the young King Henry III. The exhibition will be open to visitors on Sunday 14th and Monday 15th June, from 10am to 4pm, and then throughout the summer. On Monday 15th, schoolchildren will be coming into Caversham Court Gardens to mark the anniversary, and the bells of S Peter’s church will be ringing a special peal. For more information, visit www.fccg.org.uk
I was very pleased to hear from a GP – Ellen Kruidenier – who is on a mission to help us all dismantle the taboo surrounding death and dying. Anyone who has lost someone close to them, or is dealing with end-of-life issues, perhaps with elderly parents will know it can be a lonely place, but that does not have to be the case. Would you like to learn more about care plans, advanced directives, power of attorney, or find out where to go for help? Dr Kruidenier, who takes care of patients in Sonning Common, has a special interest in palliative care or ‘end-of-life’ care – in 2012 she took on a role as a GP-champion for ‘End of Life Care’ in the area to promote communication between the various health professionals, institutions and the community. She has started to set up sessions for anybody who lives in the area who is interested (not necessarily a patient in her surgery) to help people to learn about all aspect of ‘end of life-care’ and ‘advanced care planning’, but also focussing on communication skills; i.e. ‘how to start a difficult conversation...’ They are free of charge and run by Ellen and two trained volunteer nurses.
The current venue is the Health Centre in Sonning Common (RG4 9SW) but in the future this might move to the village hall or other places depending on interest. Would you like to be more confident in talking about end-of-life care issues, death and dying? Join the friendly café-style sessions on Wednesday, 17th June, 2.30–4pm. This is a very interesting topic, so watch this space for more on this admirable cause in Round & About soon. Call Sonning Common Health Centre 0118 9722188 to find out more.
Magician Paul Daniels will raise money for the Wargrave branch of the RNLI on June 24th. As part of Wargrave Village Festival, on Mill Green, the veteran Magic Circle performer will sprinkle a little magic on his wife Debbie McGee as part of a mammoth 41-event tour over this month. The show starts at 7.30pm. For tickets, which cost £15, call Wargrave RNLI chairman Michael Porter on 07967 975964.
You good, good folk of Caversham and Sonning are regular attendees of Readifolk, its organisers tell us. In case you’re not, and would like to be, Readifolk meets in the Conference Room at RISC on Sundays from 8pm to 10.30pm. The first event, on 7th June, is a Theme Night ‘That’s Funny’ – is that funny ha-ha or funny peculiar? On June 14th the four-piece acoustic group Commonground entertain with a blend of harmony singing and concertina, guitar and string accompaniment. On June 21st it’s a singers’ night with a special feature spot ‘Magna Carta through Song’. On June 28th, Andy Clarke & Steve Tyler bring a unique approach to traditional songs and tunes with hurdy gurdy, cittern, guitar and bouzouki.
Caversham Horticultural Society would like to tell our readers about their June talk. The society welcomes Anna Platoni of the RHS Entomology Department to give a talk entitled “Butterflies and Bugs: garden friends and foes”. This talk, starting at 7.45pm, will take place on Wednesday, 17th June, at the usual venue of Caversham Primary School, in Hemdean Road. The admission fee is £3 for non-members. Refreshments will be served afterwards.
The ‘Gosbrook Garden Growers’ have begun a new growing season at St John’s Church in Gosbrook Road, Caversham. The group meets each Friday afternoon from 4.30–5.30. The free sessions are drop-in, with no commitment to attend each week. Our aim is to grow fruit and vegetables in the raised beds situated in the church grounds. The growers tall us their events are ‘very informal’, with those attending ranging from two years old to retirees, which sounds wonderful. The Brownie group has planted potatoes in the beds. They have also planted peas, beans, beetroots and courgettes in pots and have now taken them home to nurture them there. Join the gang for a chat whilst watering, weeding and planting.
Yee-hah and cor blimey guvnor! Let’s All Go to the Music Hall as Kennington Amateur Dramatic Society bring you a show full of songs, sketches and entertainment. Running from Friday June 26th (evening), Saturday 27th (matinee/evening) and Sunday 28th (matinee), at Kennington village centre, tickets are £8 adults and £6 concessions. Gospel with a western twist, and an Old Time music hall, toe-tapping, sing-along fun. Call Kay in the box office for more information, on 01865 739025.
Micklands Summer Fete is taking place on Saturday, 20th June, from 11am to 2pm. Entry is free and ALL are welcome. Building on the success of last year’s fantastic day, the organisers have ferret-racing, a police car and fire engine, a Punch & Judy show, owl display, bouncy castle and giant slide, barbecue and bar plus many independent traders offering face-painting, tattoos, sweets, cakes and much more. A great day out raising money for an aspirational local school, so see you there!
Professional musicians arrive on your doorstep once again thanks to Concerts in Caversham. Midsummer Serenade takes place on 20th June from 7.30pm at St Andrew’s Church in Caversham (RG4 7PL). You can hear the Caversham Ensemble Chamber Orchestra with director and soloist Tamas Andras (co-leader from the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra), will perform a wonderfully lyrical programme to celebrate midsummer. A complete performance of Vivaldi’s quintessential Four Seasons, a lively Divertimento by Mozart, Vaughan Williams’ pastorale oboe concerto and the beautiful and moving theme from Ladies in Lavender. The oboist Timothy Watts, also from the Royal Philharmonic, will be the soloist in the concerto and the orchestra will comprise some of the best professional musicians from in and around London. Tickets are £16, £18 or £20, with under-16s free, from Waltons the Jewellers in Prospect Street, Caversham (cash only and closed Mondays) or call 0118 9484112 or 01189463202 Visit www.concertsincaversham.co.uk for more information.
Now all you succulent-loving readers! The Reading branch of the British Cactus and Succulent Society will be welcoming their very own Keith and Kathy Flanagan for an illustrated talk entitled ‘Our Mammillarias’. The date is Saturday 20th June. The time 7.15 pm. The venue is Chapel Hall in Loddon Bridge Road, Woodley (RG5 4BG). Non-members are welcome. A token entry fee of £2 includes tea/coffee and biscuits together with a ticket for the raffle. See the website www.reading.bcss.org.uk . For encouragement and any questions, call Alice Vanden Bon on 0118 977 5273.
This year, Kidmore-End Pre-School are holding their summer fete, on 27th of June. As always, it will be a fantastic day for all the family. Head to Kidmore End Primary School, 11am -3pm, for tractor rides around the village and through the woods, a treasure hunt with a prize, hog roast and bar, cake stalls, local stalls, welly-wanging, a raffle, silent auction, bouncy castle and much more. Admission is free and visitors are welcome to find out more about the charity-based pre-school and the primary school. For more details, visit www.kidmoreendpreschool.co.uk
Caversham Heights Townswomens Guild returned to the past last month with Catherine Sampson’s presentation on Georgian cookery. Chris Walton gave an interesting talk about jewellery to the social studies group and many members enjoyed afternoon tea at the Boaters cafe overlooking the marina at Caversham. The scrabble club and luncheon club met as usual. The ambling club had a bluebell waik and an ever-popular coffee morning was held. If that whets your appetite, head to the next meeting on June 18th, which will be the guild’s 54th birthday party taking place at 7.30pm at the Methodist church hall in Highmoor Road, Caversham.
Windrush Innovation Centre, Howbery Park, Crowmarsh Gifford, Wallingford, Oxon, OX10 8BA