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We thought you would be interested to read the reports from the various charities and groups that were presented at the Annual Parish Meeting held in April 2016 so we've put them together and you can access them by clicking here >>

Saturday 16 January, 2016 - Friends of St. John the Baptist, Bressingham
On a glorious, sunny January afternoon, Bressingham resident and wildflower expert, Stella Taylor, led 28 warmly-wrapped attendees around the churchyard, pointing out items of interest that most of us so easily overlook!  The winter aconites are spectacular in the churchyard each January. This year, everything is advanced: snowdrops are already open and primroses and low growing cow parsley and hogweed are in flower!
Stella showed everyone the Butcher’s Broom, magnificently laden with bright red berries. Magnifying glasses were used to see its tiny, beautiful purple-edged flower.  Warm soup and sandwiches helped keep everyone warm. Click here to see more photos.  £126 raised through entry fees, raffle entries and donations will help towards St John’s Heritage Lottery Fund bid.  It is really good news that the church has been awarded a ‘first-round pass’ for £250,000 towards repairing the nave roof and rainwater goods.  Heritage activities such as medieval graffiti and pew ends projects will also take place in 2017 should the second-round application, which has to be submitted by November, 2016, be successful.

Bressingham and District Ladies Group

Jason Salisbury of Suffolk Farmhouse Cheeses was guest speaker at our May meeting. He delivered a humorous and fascinating account of the development of the business at Whitegate farm, near Needham Market where their Farm Shop is situated. Together with his wife, Katharine, they keep a herd of 40 pedigree Guernseys. The creamy milk is used to make three main cheeses: Suffolk Gold, Suffolk Blue and Suffolk Brie. We enjoyed sampling the cheeses and such was the approval rating that Jason "sold out". Jason brings a range of produce to the North Lopham Farmers Market.

Our next meeting is on Monday, 20th June at 7:30. Helen Frazer and Keith Monk will present an evening of Music, Song and Chat.
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Here's a recipe from Brenda Webb's husband Ken - we thought we'd ask some of the the husband's of our members for their favourite recipe. Click here to read and print >>

Bressingham & Fersfield Allotments, Common Road behind Piper’s Piece
Michelle Lanchester, Chair of the Allotment Association, would like to thank all those people who either donated or bought items from the Jumble and Plant Sale held at the Village Hall on Saturday 3rd June.  £252.20 was raised for the Allotment Association. Here is a photograph of Tristan the Vice Chair of the Allotments Association planting his strawberries with his wife Kelly and their daughter Sophie. Tristan has grown his strawberries from runners in his poly tunnel. He adds coffee grounds to the soil which he find not only adds nitrogen but is also a deterent against slugs. He hopes to have an abundant crop of strawberries this year.
Please note that there are 4 allotments still free so if you are interested please contact Michelle (T: 01379 688109 / 07824515801 email: michelle.lanchester@googlemail.com)

Written by David Neville Chairman of Fuel Allotment Charity and member of Parish Council
There is, in the village of Bressingham, a parcel of land which was given in 1799 for the purpose collecting fuel, ie peat and firewood for the poor of the parish's of Bressingham & Fersfield. The charity still exists as does the wooded land, however, clearly times have changed, and the idea of collecting firewood and peat is not going to be on most people's 'to-do' list. But of course it is interesting that probably most people in the village would know nothing of either the charity - which is known as the Fuel Allotment Charity - or the wood itself, which sits on the original part of the village of Bressingham, Fen Street. With this in mind, the Trustees of this charity are now in the process of considering the future of this piece of land. It has until recently been leased, but the longer term future is important with a view to supplying an income which will benefit the community, and so options are being looked at. One of these options is possibly with the Suffolk Wildlife Trust which would open up the connection with their other Fen activities, and of course connect with our village as well as creating an income for the Charity. Do keep an eye on the website for future developments on this interesting and important project.

WHERE ARE THEY NOW? report by Liz Handy
It's three years since we visited Adrian and Moira Kinnear King in their new home in France (see Archives/Community People page 3). At that time, Adrian had been living there and working on the house whilst Moira was still based in Fersfield and since then they have sold their Fersfield home and Moira has joined Adrian – and made the big move.

During the time since our last visit the house has had an enormous amount of work done on it, mostly by Adrian.

Adrian in his professional workshop just off the kitchen.
You will see them in the archive picture sitting in their only habitable room - now this room is their bedroom with an ensuite bathroom and dressing room - see from the picture of Moira and Janet.
The view is still to die for looking out at the vines and when we arrived they were in the midst of supervising the building of their swimming pool. Moira’s condition of moving to France was to have a swimming pool and a horse - the horse is yet to come!
Moira has now settled in. Her French may not be as good as Adrian’s,  however she bravely goes to a line dancing class once a week with her French neighbours and  has also joined a riding  group, so she is catching Adrian up fast.

Our surprise was to find Janet and Tony Delasalle staying there too.  They sold their house in Fersfield earlier this year and decided to rent a house in France for three months. France did its magic on them and they are now in the process of buying one near Chalais. They are staying with Adrian and Moira until they move in September. Their two cats are very much at home in France as is Sam the Kinnear King’s dog. There is also a touch of Norfolk in the courtyard – a bell from Gazes’ auction hangs on the wall. Adrian's work in the house is of outstanding quality – and Moira too has been working hard as his assistant. There is still a bit of work to be done on their gite which they will be renting out next summer.  An amazing apartment that will sleep at least 12 with a huge living space.  The Delasalles have been helping them too but they themselves have decided on buying a house which has already been modernised by another English couple! Good luck to both.

NB Janet Delasalle was Chair of the Bressingham and Fersfield Parish Council until last year. Adrian was for many years on the PC as well as very active with the Drama Club often writing the pantomines.
See these and more photos from our visit >>

The pews of St.Andrew’s, Fersfield, were packed tight last night (Saturday 24 September) for a very special Autumn concert entitled ‘Music and Words for a September Evening’. The event brought together six performers who delightfully demonstrated their outstanding talent and variety. There were works for soprano, flute and piano and some well-loved poetry readings.
Amelia Thomson, a well-loved doctor, demonstrated just how effectively she could have pursued a career on the concert platform. Delcine Dunsmore, now a flute teacher as well as performer, filled the building with the sweetest of flute melodies and Luke Dunsmore, a gifted young jazz pianist, still at his studies at school, dazzlingly contrasted with the classical performers. Piano accompaniment was provided by the acclaimed Jenny Eason. The poetry readings were given by Duncan Livingstone, whose iconic acting and teaching skills were to provide much joy from works including Kipling and Betjeman. Introduction and continuity was splendidly provided by Susie Martin. Amelia’s contributions included Mozart’s ‘Exsultate Jubilate’ and a piece from ‘The Marriage of Figaro’, in which her range and phrasing shone through. She also gave a delightful touch of Schubert with ‘Du Bist die Ruh’, and touchingly concluded the programme with Gershwin’s ‘Someone to Watch Over Me'. Delcine showed her versatility and fine technique with C P E Bach’s ‘Flute Sonata in A Minor’ and Mozart’s ‘Second Flute Concerto in D Major’. She also shone on the piano with her own composition ‘A Dying Waltz’. Luke dazzled with his own ‘On/Off Boogie’ and Howard’s ‘Fly Me to the Moon’.  The atmosphere was charged with Duncan’s beautifully modulated speaking voice: particular favourites were John Betjeman’s and Mary Wilson’s complementary poems concerning Diss. During the interval, wine and a mouth-watering selection of canapes were served, there was a raffle for a selection of quality prizes, and at the end of the second part of the programme the audience left the beautifully decorated church wanting more! Great thanks are due to all those who performed, provided the canapes and wine, prepared and decorated the church, were part of a happy, responsive audience or contributed in any way to a thrilling evening. The net profit was £657. Click here to see more photos >>

Sunday 13 November 2016
There was a large attendance for Fersfield’s annual service of Remembrance at St Andrew’s Church. The ceremony started in the church with hymns and the order of service. These were followed by the acts of Remembrance at the War Memorial, which stands in the northern section of St Andrew’s churchyard. Wreaths and crosses were laid by Richard Vere, for the Parochial Church Council, and Karl Traynier for Bessingham & Fersfield Parish Council. Emily Wildish, a young lady resident in the village, wearing the uniform of Culford College Combined Cadet Force, placed a cross in memory of a young Fersfield RAF Officer and all those British, American and Allied service personnel who served at RAF Fersfield during World War 2. The service concluded with the National Anthem and Blessing in the church, after which refreshments were served. The collection was in aid of the Royal British Legion.
photo by Krys Wakefield Click here to see more of Krys Wakefield's photos from the day >

The pews, choir stalls and 80 additional chairs at Fersfield's St. Andrew's Church were packed tight for the annual Carol Service on Wednesday (21 December). Carol and Christmas singing was led by Michael Dann and Discord, who performed 'Winter Wonderland', and Delcine and Luke Dunsmore delighted the congregation with saxophone and electronic piano. There were seasonal and bible readings connected with Christmas, and Rector Tony Billett led the prayer and gave the Blessing.  The church was beautifully decorated for the season, and after the service magnificent refreshments were served with mulled wine. We give a huge thanks to everyone who made this such an enjoyable and evocative occasion. See more photos from the evening, taken by Krys Wakefield >>

News >> History >> Community Interviews >>
QUEEN'S 90th BIRTHDAY PARTY Photos: Krys Wakefield
May we say a very big 'thank-you' indeed to the Village Hall Committee and their great team of helpers for organising the wonderful 'Queen's 90th Birthday Party' on Saturday. It was a special and hugely appreciated event. Thank-you too, to all those who supported this.  It was so good to see everyone enjoying themselves so much.
Click here to see more photos >

Afternoon Club - Queen's 90th report by Reg & Kay Brock
Although several of our members were away for this meeting more than 20 people enjoyed a fun packed afternoon which was themed around the Queen's 90th birthday.
To start we held a Royal Quiz which revealed some unusual facts about the Queen. Following this, Mr Richard Hewitt gave a short speech and a beautiful birthday cake made by Sharon was cut by our oldest member Norman who is 95. We all  toasted the Queen with a glass of "Bubbly" and a slice of cake

Luckily the weather held and Dave Smith joined us to show interested members how to play boules/petanque and Reg had a few members playing fun croquet. They all came in happy, tired and ready for a cup of tea. Jewellery making and card making workshops were again held for those who didn't venture outside. Many thanks to our members who have arranged and planted the beautiful wheelbarrow which now stands outside the Village Hall.

ROBIN HOOD - a great success!
report by Brenda Webb

We'd like to thank everyone who came along to see ' Robin Hood' and the wonderful cast who as usual, came up trumps for each performance. Their hard work and your support helped us to raise approximately £1300. The costumes were great with a lot taken from our own stock which were 'tweaked' by Stella, and a few from Diss-guise costume hire in Wills Yard. Diss.

On Saturday we played to an almost full house and on the other two nights audience numbers were good but a few more would have been nice.  We are now hoping to do a “Musical” Comedy in September, so watch this space for more news! To see more photos click here >


On Saturday, 10 April, the car parking spaces were full for a 'Spring Event' of coffee, cakes, chat, books, tombola and raffle at Fersfield's St Andrew's Parish Church.  It was really good to see people from the villages and their friends, and to meet and welcome others who have recently moved into the area.  The event raised £326 towards repair of the infamous 'hole' and rainwater problem in the chancel wall. We are making progress towards our estimated required sum of £20,000 ........ one piece of news is that we have recently been granted £1,000 towards our project cost by the Allchurch Trust: we still await a decision for a larger sum from the Listed Places of Worship scheme,  which is almost certainly oversubscribed. We are now working hard, with St John's, to prepare for the Open Gardens event on June 25-26: please keep a look out for details of this.  We are also planning for a Music Evening in the church for September.

If you have any used postage stamps, we have now a box at the back of the church in which they may be put, to help towards charities supported by our local Ministry churches.

Afternoon Club - enjoyed by all again!
report by Reg & Kay Brock

The Afternoon Club met for the 3rd time on the 12th April with about 30 people attending another fun packed afternoon. Tummy bugs and colds depleted our numbers slightly but those who were fit enough enjoyed an opening game of bingo followed by crafting workshops held by Jan, Kay and Molly. Jan took a group for cross-stitching whilst Kay had 6 enthusiastic ladies doing card stamping and colouring. Molly meanwhile showed some ladies how to crochet and they took their work home to continue practising. The other members played scrabble, did crosswords, colouring and 2 or 3 had a go on the refurbished darts board. For those of you who may not have been to a meeting please give us a go - we try and cater for all ages and tastes with over 10 different board games, crosswords, drawing as well as darts and table skittles. 

We were again grateful to the ladies who provided yummy cakes to go with the tea and coffee and to our band of stalwart helpers for setting up and tidying away. The next meeting will be held on the 10th May when we will start proceedings with a light hearted quiz. - see you all then!

Anglia in Bloom
Bressingham and Fersfield were awarded the Silver Certificate for the Village Category (up to 2,500 inhabitants) in this summer's 'Anglia in Bloom' awards. We should be very proud of this, to add to the 'Open Gardens' success, and huge thanks and congratulations to all gardeners, wheelbarrow artists and others who contributed to this splendid result.  Special thanks to Linda Holly and Katherine Smith.

see the PHOTOS >>
Brilliant weather and an excellent turn-out at this year's show which made approximately £200 for the Village Hall funds. Entries were up this year, with a couple of new villagers entering (and doing very well) in all classes. Cup winners this year are:
Bressingham Cup Margaret Winter
The Holmes Challenge Cup Alan Hines
Home Industries Cup Sharon Cole
H Burroughes & Son Cup (under 7's) Charlie Orford
The Country Homes Cup (age 8-11) Emma Neve
Irene Howard Cup (12-16) Sylvia Roberts
Well done to everyone who entered, supported, judged and helped on the day - we couldn't do it without you. Next year the Show will be held on Sunday 10th September. Hope to see you there.

Fersfield Harvest Festival
Sunday 9 October, St Andrew’s celebrated its Harvest Festival when at 11am, the Rector, Tony Billett, conducted the Harvest Thanksgiving Service in the beautifully decorated church. Anna’s altar display was stunning and Pam and Jan provided beautiful displays around the church and south porch. Favourite harvest hymns were sung, Adam read a lesson and Dan’s vintage Ferguson tractor, representing the work and dedication of our farmers, was blessed at the start of the service. A delicious harvest lunch was held in the church at 12.30, when a ploughman’s lunch, splendid puddings and good company were enjoyed by all present.See more of Krys Wakefield's photos click here
Photos by Krys Wakefield

On 17 October a full church said goodbye to Brenda Oates who, until she moved to Devon in spring 2013, lived in Bressingham for 48 years. Her cremated remains were buried with her husband John who died in 1992. Brenda and John lived firstly at The Highlands in High Road, and then just one night before John died they moved to Waveney View further down the road.
Their children Rosemary and Martyn their children went to the village school and although it was a sad occasion it was lovely to see them both, with some of their families back in the village. A reception took place in the village hall after the service which was taken by the vicar the Rev'd Wendy Evans. Brenda had been a hard working member of the village holding coffee mornings, car boot sales etc for various organisations. She was a wonderful supporter over the years of the village hall, the school and especially the church. She was greatly missed when she moved to be nearer Martyn and had been driving up to the time when she had a stroke 11 weeks before her death.
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