Usually, this time of year sees me defiantly still wearing sandals and refusing to wear a jacket in a desperate bid to cling on to the last remnants of summer. Maybe it’s my age, but this year I’m embracing autumn, and all its associated cosiness, and have welcomed back my winter boots, scarves and jumpers like long-lost friends. For me this month is all about lovely weekend walks, cottage pies, soups and crumbles, and mindless Saturday night television. What’s not to love? Oh, and as it is my birthday month I have a valid excuse for eating cake and drinking wine.
Happy days indeed!
Firstly we bring you news of a new group being launched in Cirencester to bring together people with cancer or affected by it. The town’s Macmillan branch has started up the project called Cirencester Mates, a self-support group where people can talk or get advice in a relaxed environment. The meetings are already up and running, with the next get-together taking place on Tuesday 13th at the Somewhere Else restaurant in the town’s Castle Street. More meetings are planned for Tuesdays 10th November and 8th December.
Cirencester Camera Club’s new season is in full swing, with meetings being held at 7.30pm each Monday evening at Ingleside House, in Beeches Road. Potential new members are welcome to attend, with the club offering a varied programme for people taking pictures with any camera and who would like to start or develop their hobby. Further information is available from Brian Dinnage on 01285 644111 or from the club’s website www.cirencestercameraclub.org.uk
Just a reminder that Cirencester Recorded Music Society meets at the Ashcroft Centre, Ashcroft Road at 7.30pm on the first and third Wednesday of each month.
Staying in Fairford where tickets are now available for Fairford and District Choral Society’s autumn concert, which takes place next month. The choir will be performing Rossini’s Petite Messe Solennelle on Saturday, 28th November at 7.30pm in St Mary’s Church, Fairford. This will be the last concert for conductor John Read who founded the choir a decade ago. Rehearsals continue each Wednesday from 7.30pm to 9.30pm at Fairford United Church, in Milton Street. New singers are always welcome. Concert tickets are £10, or £5 for under 21s, and full details can be found at www.fairford.org/choralsociety
Back in Cirencester and Swindon Choral Society will be performing Harmoniemesse by Haydn and Magnificat by CPE Bach at Cirencester Parish Church on Saturday 10th. A retiring collection will be taken in aid of Cirencester Rotary Club’s Hope for Tomorrow appeal, which provides mobile chemotherapy units in the area. The concert starts at 7.30pm, and tickets cost £15, with one child ticket free per adult. They are available from Cirencester Parish Church Centre, the Information Centre at the Corinium Museum, or online at www.wegottickets.com . For more details see www.swindonchoral.org.uk
With half-term looming at the end of the month there is plenty on to keep the kids busy at the Corinium Museum. On Monday 26th you can make sabre tooth cat masks, followed the next day by stretchy caveman making. The Wednesday family drop-in session will see kids given the chance to make woolly mammoths and on the Thursday cave art and mini-mosaics are on the agenda. The week will finish on the Friday with children decorating a pop-up Ice Age scene. Details of times and prices for these events and all the other great things that the museum has on can be found at www.coriniummuseum.org or by calling 01285 655611.
Calling all knitters - the Big Knit is back and knitters are needed! The campaign, which raises funds to help vulnerable older people, asks knitters to make tiny hats for the top of Innocent smoothie bottles. For every ‘behatted’ bottle sold, 25p will go to Age UK to help keep older people warm and well in winter. For more details, and knitting patterns, see www.ageuk.org.uk. Local knitters should send their hats by Monday, 30th November to Age UK Gloucestershire, 26 Station Road, Gloucester, GL1 1EW.
Feeling lucky? The Cirencester Lottery gives you chance to have a go at winning some cash whilst also supporting a range of local good causes. The lottery is a non-profit venture run to raise money for and awareness of charities in and around Cirencester. Tickets are £1 each and available at www.local-lottery.co.uk. One winner, who is drawn at random, claims the entire prize fund which includes a donation to a local charity of their choice. The Cirencester Lottery is fully registered and monitored by Cotswold District Council.
A popular autumn fair offering lots of shopping all in the name of charity takes place at Beaudesert Park School, Minchinhampton on Saturday 17th. The 11th annual charity fair will feature gifts, accessories, ceramics, homewares and clothing from more 20 stalls, many of them Cotswold-based. The fair will run from 9am until 4pm and entrance will be £3 and free for children under 16. Proceeds will be split between The Family Haven and Hft (formerly known as The Home Farm Trust).
Cotswold District Council has announced it will be extending its social prescription programme to all surgeries in the district. The successful pilot programme launched 18 months ago has enabled various GP practices in Cirencester, Rendcomb and Lechlade to refer certain patients to the district council for a range of non-clinical services. These include matching patients with volunteer befrienders, offering membership of various social groups, enabling access to community transport, counselling and peer support groups, specialist exercise classes, walking groups and debt advice.
On to an event that always draws in the crowds - The Times and The Sunday Times Cheltenham Literature Festival. The festival returns between the 2nd and 11th of the month with a programme featuring big names from the literary world, sport, comedy and politics. Alongside the programme of nearly 500 debates, interviews and workshops, the event also host Book It!, a festival within a festival for families and young readers. For a full list of what’s on and ticket details, go to www.cheltenhamfestivals.com/literature
Staying cultural, and the Cotswold Decorative and Fine Arts Society’s lecture this month is entitled Rag-dolls to Robots: A World History of Toys. The talk, on Wednesday 14th, is being delivered by Chloe Sayer. Chloe is a fellow of the Royal Anthropological Institute, the author of numerous books and has worked on a number of television documentaries for Channel 4 and the BBC. The lecture will take place at Bradwell Village Hall, near Burford, at 11am with coffee and tea available from 10.15am. Non-members are very welcome for a suggested donation of £8. For more information see www.cotswolddfas.org.uk
Corinium Decorative and Fine Arts Society’s illustrated talk this month is on Wednesday 28th at Cirencester Deer Park School on Stroud Road. The illustrated lecture, Medieval Form and Colour Inspiring New Work at St Albans Cathedral, is to be given by Rory Young and will start at 7.30pm. Visitors are welcome to attend at a cost of £5. For more details, go to www.coriniumdfas.org.uk
Giant waves in the atmosphere over the mountains of the Andes and Antarctica is the topic of this month’s talk to Cirencester Science and Technology Society. Professor Nicholas Mitchell, from the University of Bath, will give the talk on Wednesday 14th at 7.30pm at the Royal Agricultural University. Visitors can attend for £3 and students come in for free. For more details see www.cirenscience.org.uk
Moving back closer to home with a talk called Tales from Gloucestershire Railways. The talk, by Tony Conder, will be given to Cirencester Archaeological and Historical Society at the Ashcroft Centre, Cirencester at 7.30pm on Wednesday 28th. Tony was Curator of the British Waterways Collection for 25 years, coming to Gloucester in 1988 to open the National Waterways Museum. The society’s lectures are free to members and those in full-time education. The talks are £3 for non-members.
Stepping back further in time to a talk about The Highwaymen of Gloucestershire. John Putley will give the talk at The Old Prison in Northleach on Thursday 15th. It will start at 2pm and cost £5 to attend, which will include light refreshments.
Cirencester Abbey - the Lost Treasure is the title of Cirencester Civic Society’s next talk on Monday 19th. It will be given by Jim Thompson at the Parish Centre, Gosditch Street at 7.30pm. It will cost visitors £3 to attend. See www.ccsoc.org.uk for full details.
Just a quick one to remind you that the deadline for signing up to the autumn’s Big Community Switch is Monday 12th. The scheme, which is being supported by Gloucestershire County Council, aims to help people get cheaper gas and electricity by working together. To find out more or to register your interest see www.gloucestershire.gov.uk/bigcommunityswitch or call the council on 01452 425757.
Residents across Gloucestershire are being reminded to recycle their food waste. Food waste recycling has been encouraged for a number of years and separate collection and recycling is offered to most homes in the county, although despite this around 20,000 tonnes of food waste is still being sent to landfill every year. In a bid to encourage more people to make use of the food caddies and recycling collection, stickers will be placed on all wheelie bins as a reminder to recycle what food waste they can, including leftovers, cooked or uncooked, plus food past its sell-by-date, tea bags, bones and egg shells. Food waste collected in Cotswold District is composted on a farm in the north-west of the county and is used to manufacture commercially available soil enhancer. To find out more about what can and cannot be recycled in your food waste container, or to request a new caddie, see www.cotswold.gov.uk
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