September is with us with it that dreaded back-to-school feeling. That sinking sensation of counting down the last few days of freedom that I had when I was younger has returned now I’m a mum. And, while I’m sure this will soon be tempered by the peace, quiet and tidiness of a child-free house, at the moment I am wishing we could have the last six weeks all over again. On the topic of education, we hope you enjoy our eight-page Education special in this issue. And, at least I can console myself with the fact that it will be Christmas before we know it. I know this is true because I’ve received my first festive Rambling...
We start this time with a couple of events coming up in the first week of the month. Join Emma Stuart at the Corinium Museum as she uncovers the Beeches Road Roman Villa and explores the context and discovery of the magnificent Hare Mosaic. The talk takes place on Tuesday 1st at 2.30pm and will cost £6 or £5 for season ticket holders.
And take in an al fresco performance of Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream in the glorious gardens of Chedworth Manor. Chedworth Drama Productions will present the comedy play from 2nd to 5th September. Performances will start at 7pm and the gardens will be open from 6pm for picnics. For full details and to buy tickets see www.chedworthdrama.co.uk or call 01285 831848.
Back to local history with a weekend of events celebrating Cirencester’s fine heritage. The town is once again holding its annual heritage open days as part of the national festival which aims to bring local history and culture to life. The events locally will be launched on Friday 11th with a talk by local architect Nicholas Arbuthnott called Heritage and Sustainable Development – Are They Compatible? This will take place at The Baptist Church, Coxwell Street at 7.30pm and all are welcome. On Saturday 12th and Sunday 13th several properties in the town will be open for free and there will be guided walks around the town. The Corinium Museum will also be open for free on Saturday 12th and will be running a family trail. Leaflets with full details of what’s on and the properties taking part will be available from the museum, the town council information centre or Waterstones, or for more information see www.heritageopendays.org.uk or www.ccsoc.org.uk
Staying with the local history theme, and you can hear a talk on Brunel’s Railway Station and the Great Western Railway in Cirencester on Monday 21st. John Thomas will give the talk to Cirencester Civic Society at the Parish Centre, Gosditch Street at 7.30pm. It will cost visitors £3 to attend. For more information see www.ccsoc.org.uk
Cirencester Civic Society is also staging a societies and clubs fair in Cirencester on Thursday 24th. The event gives people the chance to find out about organisations in the area and how to join. The fair will take place 12-2pm at the Bingham House Gallery, Dyer Street.
Many clubs and societies kick off their autumn programme this month, including Fairford and District Choral Society which begins rehearsals for its next concert. The society will perform Rossini’s Petite Messe Solennelle at the concert on November 28th, which will be the final one for founding conductor John Read. New singers are very welcome. The group meets at Fairford United Church, Milton Street, from 7.30pm until 9.30pm every Wednesday. For further details see www.fairford.org/choralsociety
The Cotswold Decorative and Fine Arts Society will hear a lecture on 500 Years of Portraiture by Sarah Kelly on Wednesday 9th. The lecture will focus on a range of portraits, some by the famous, some by less well-known artists, spanning 500 years of Western European painting. It will take place at Bradwell Village Hall, near Burford, and will start at 11am. Non-members are welcome and will be asked to make a suggested donation of £8. For more information see www.cotswolddfas.org.uk
The Medici and the Magnificence of Mother Nature: Gardens and Villas is the title of a talk to the Corinium Decorative and Fine Arts Society this month. Daniel Evans will give the illustrated lecture on Tuesday 22nd at Deer Park School, Stroud Road at 7.30pm. Visitors are welcome, and it will cost them £5 to attend. For more information see www.coriniumdfas.org.uk
On Saturday 19th The Mighty Jubovski return to St Lawrence, Lechlade with their brand of folk, Gypsy and classical tunes. Tickets are £10 and are available in advance from Lechlade Post Office or on the door on the night. The evening, which starts at 7.30pm, is in aid of church restoration and maintenance funds.
And if you can’t make the South Cerney event you can still support Gloucestershire Deaf Association by sponsoring its team of runners taking part in the Cheltenham Half Marathon on Sunday 27th. Thirteen staff and supporters, including the charity’s chief executive Jenny Hopkins, are taking on the 13 miles – many never having attempted anything similar before – and any sponsorship would be gratefully received. To find out more or to sponsor the team see www.glosdeaf.org.uk
Thinking caps on for a quiz night in aid of the Friends of Cotswold Volunteers. The event takes place at the Jubilee 77 Club, Ashcroft Road, on Friday 25th starting at 8pm. It will cost £5 per person, which will include a ploughman’s supper, and teams are for no more than four. To find out more pop into Cirencester Local Information Centre at Bingham House or call 01285 655646.
Help raise funds for another great local cause by taking part in one of the most colourful events of the year! The Flying Colours Run is back for a second year in aid of Longfield (formerly Cotswold Care Hospice) which provides specialist services for people living with a life-limiting illness in Gloucestershire. The event takes place on Sunday 6th at Cotswold Airport at Kemble, and includes a 5km fun run and a 1km Little Paint Dash for children aged five and under. For more information or to enter see www.longfield.org.uk/Event/flying-colours-run
Or why not catch up with some friends over a cuppa in aid of Macmillan Cancer Support? The charity is asking for people to host a coffee morning in aid of its work. All you need to do is invite some friends, and ask them to make a donation for the coffee and cake you serve. This year the official coffee morning date is Friday 25th but you can hold yours on whatever date is most convenient for you and your guests. For full details and to sign up for a free coffee morning kit see www.coffee.macmillan.org.uk
Enter the world of the Victorian Lunar Park as Giffords Circus returns to Cirencester. This year’s show, Moon Songs, tells the story of a fairground world being run by larger-than-life illusionist and man of magic and mystery, Odoroff, and his little man assistant, David. It will be performed at Stratton Meadows from Friday 4th to Monday 14th. For full details of show times and to book see www.giffordscircus.com or call 0845 4597469.
It’s full steam ahead over in Northleach on Saturday 12th and Sunday 13th for the annual traditional country steam show. The show, off Eastington Road, will feature a wide range of full size and scale steam engines, vintage tractors, military vehicles and motorcycles, and classic cars. There will also be rural crafts, local charity stalls and a real ale festival with live music. The show will be open from 10am until 5pm on Saturday and until 4pm on Sunday and car parking is free. Children under 16 can enter for free and it costs £5 for adults and £3 for senior citizens. All proceeds from the show will go towards staging next year’s event and to local charities. For full details see www.northleachsteamshow.co.uk
From a celebration of the steam age to a talk about nuclear power. Construction, Operation and Decommissioning of Nuclear Plant is the title of the Cirencester Science and Technology Society’s September lecture. It will be given on Wednesday 9th by David Brown, of British Energy/EdF, at the Ashcroft Centre at 7.30pm. Visitors are welcome and it will cost them £3 to attend.
Hands up if you fancy saving some money on your energy bills! If so you might be interested in signing up to the Big Community Switch which helps people get cheaper gas and electricity by working together. The scheme, supported by Gloucestershire County Council, is about bulk-buying fuel – if a large number of people want to change supplier together they are likely to get a better deal. The more households that register their interest in switching, the more attractive it becomes for an energy supplier to offer a competitive price. The council is encouraging people to sign up for the Autumn Big Community Switch by Monday, 12th October You can do this at www.gloucestershire.gov.uk/bigcommunityswitch or by calling the council on 01452 425757.
Does part of your neighbourhood need a clean-up, or maybe a new litter or dog bin? If so, seize the moment and get your request in to your local Cotswold District councillor. All elected members can ask the council’s waste service provider, Ubico Ltd, to provide additional street cleansing work within their ward up to the value of £2,000 by the end of January. This means that residents can make requests to their ward councillors for additional work such as enhanced street cleaning, grass cutting, clearing up during or after a local event, and installation and emptying of extra litter or dog mess bins (provided they are on land owned by Gloucestershire Highways, the district council or a town or parish council.) To contact your councillor see www.cmis.cotswold.gov.uk/cmis5/Councillors.aspx and enter your postcode.
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