Stanhoe Pit



Open Gardens

Don’t miss Stanhoe’s Open Gardens day on Saturday 1 June!


June film

The Keeper is showing in Stanhoe on Monday 10 June.


Parish Council Agenda

Parish Council Agenda - 16th May 2019


Banners to baskets

A busy meeting continues the WI’s centenary year.



50-year-old museum letter comes to light alongside a rather older fossil.


School dates

School holiday dates are back on the Stanhoe calendar.


May film

Green Book is showing in Stanhoe on Friday 10 May.


Tide times

Wells 21 May
04:02 low (-0.09m)
08:02 high (3.42m)
16:15 low (0.25m)
20:17 high (3.33m)

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Stanhoe & Barwick WI news archive


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2 May 2019

Banners to baskets

A busy meeting continues the WI’s centenary year.

The May meeting of Stanhoe and Barwick WI, held in the Methodist Church, was a multifaceted one.

As part of our centenary celebrations we presented the vicar and leader of Stanhoe Methodist Church with a well received Christmas banner as thanks for allowing us to meet in their church.

For members, we distributed at tea time pieces of a beautifully iced celebration cake, ceremonially cut by our president.

Pamela cuts the cake

Pamela cuts the cake

And an individual member was presented with a framed certificate for 30 years of membership of Stanhoe and Barwick WI.

All members were given a wooden spoon and were invited to decorate it creatively for the Norfolk Federation at Evelyn Suffield House in Norwich, for the 2019 Norfolk Day display in July.

Rosemary and Pamela on the platform

Rosemary receives her certificate

And all members were asked to vote on the acceptance of two resolutions for the national AGM. One asks for positive action to be taken over the decline in rural bus services, and the other for action to increase the uptake in acceptance of the opportunity offered for cervical screening for all women.

We were updated on our centenary project, in which four letters from village servicemen, written in 1943–44 as thank-yous for a gift of 10 shillings each sent by members of Stanhoe and Barwick WI, were reunited with their descendants.

And we were informed that our WI now has a Facebook page for everyone to see.

Making the base of a basket

Jonathon makes a basket

Prior to this busy time we were all entertained by Jonathon Carrie from Norwich who is a professional willow basket maker.

He had brought a range of willow baskets to show us, as well as his workbench, tools, and some soaked willow. With great humour he then proceeded to make a willow shopping basket before our eyes. It took 50 minutes from start to finish, using very strong hands, a variety of weaving processes, and a great deal of experience.

It was a very busy, but very enjoyable meeting.

Posted by: Charles

Posted on: 2 May 2019

4 April 2019

Baby Basics

Stanhoe WI members hear tales of crime and collect £366 for charity.

Stanhoe and Barwick WI members were honoured in April to have as a speaker Peter Lawrence, who had spent his working life in the London Police Force, as he said “policing from the Krays to the Queen.”

He regaled us with tales of the many well known people that he had met, from life in the seamy side of London to many years working as a diplomatic protection officer and in royal protection.

It was a tale of an impressive career path delivered in an understated way.

Later in the afternoon we were treated to a presentation by Maggie Anderson and Wendy Leedham on their work with Baby Basics, a charity with a West Norfolk branch in Dersingham.

In front of our eyes they packed a new Moses basket with clothing and vital items needed for the care of a newborn baby up to the age of 3 months, all of which had been either donated or acquired by fund raising.

photos: Rosemary Brown

WI cheque presentation to Baby Basics, Stanhoe Reading Room, April 2019

Each Moses basket is given to a needy young mum living locally who has nothing, and has been referred by a midwife or social worker.

Stanhoe and Barwick members had, last year, saved money in Smartie tubes for Baby Basics, and a cheque for £366.55 was presented to them to further their work locally.

WI cheque presentation to Baby Basics, Stanhoe Reading Room, April 2019

Posted by: Charles

Posted on: 4 April 2019

27 March 2019

Ten-bob appeal

Stanhoe WI seeks family members to receive wartime letters.

Stanhoe & Barwick WI is asking Stanhoe residents to help locate the families of some former villagers. “We have unearthed from our archives several thank-you letters from Stanhoe WWII servicemen,” says WI Secretary Valerie Robson. “The WI gave them each 10 shillings (50p) for Christmas in 1943 and/or 1944.”

Gerald Oldfield reads the WI letter written by his father Cecil

Gerald Oldfield with the WI thank-you letter from his father Cecil

“Our aim is to find a relative of each serviceman and present the original letter. We have already handed over two letters: to the son of Cecil Oldfield (Gerald) and to the younger brother of Maurice Ayres (Michael).”

Michael Ayres holds up the WI letter written by his brother Maurice

Michael Ayres with the letter written by his brother Maurice

If you can help locate the families of the following, please contact (01485 518033) or (01485 576261)

  • Eric Blackburn
  • H W Blower
  • (Wilfred) Jack Blower
  • Crook
  • E W Fisher (Ted)
  • Robert E Goodman
  • A Johnson (Albert?)
  • Arthur Kendle
  • D Mayhew
  • Tom Newstead
  • L Norman
  • Edgar W Smithson

Posted by: Charles

Posted on: 27 March 2019

14 March 2019

Tree planted

Stanhoe WI members plant a tree and donate a bench.

photos: Peter Bird / Lynn News

WI members in warm coats with spades and maple sapling

Planting the centenary maple

Members of Stanhoe & Barwick WI enjoyed a lunch at The Duck on Monday 11th March and then braved the gales to plant a tree in honour of their centenary year. The maple and a bench are on the playing field. Trees planted in previous years are now marked with a plaque and can be found by the pond and in Bircham Road.

WI members sitting on the new bench

WI members on the new bench

Posted by: Charles

Posted on: 14 March 2019

8 March 2019

The Great War

Stanhoe WI members and guests are privileged to hear about a meticulously researched project on the lives of WWI soldiers.

There was a room full of people at the March meeting of Stanhoe and Barwick WI when Andrew Tatham gave a very moving talk, with an accompanying video presentation, regarding the 21 years of research that he had undertaken regarding a photograph of named soldiers in uniform.

Quite by chance he had found a photo of the 46 men of the 8th Royal Berkshire Battalion which included his great grandfather, taken on the verge of the first world war. He became determined to find out more about the men, and he tried to find one living member of each of their families so that from anecdotal evidence he could build up a picture of their lives. This led to contacts with an immense network of people and compilation of an immense quantity of data.

photo: Rosemary Brown

Andrew Tatham in front of a projected image of the group of soldiers

Andrew Tatham and the Royal Berkshires officers as they were in May 1915

How was he to present all this data to share with people in the future? He decided to make a film.

The backdrop was a pastoral scene of a grassy field on Salisbury Plain where the men had camped and trained for action. A rolling calendar of the years, starting at 1864 when the first man was born, ran throughout and each time a man was born a tree appeared in the field. Every now and then a photo of a soldier would appear, the soundtrack played music of the era and a photo of people in the dress of the time reminded us of his surroundings.

In 1914 gunfire sounded, and as the men fell on the battlefield the trees in the field fell too. By 1918 only 25 men were left of the original 46. A later composite photo showed the original photo colour coded with the fallen showed in black, the nine in red had substantial wounds, and the three in green were seriously wounded; only 10 men were left living in eventuality. The last survivor died in 1990.

Colours on the original photo show who would end up dead, wounded or surviving the war

Colours on the original photo show who would end up dead (black), wounded (red and green) or surviving the war

After a short break Andrew told us the life stories of three of the men in the photo, including one who planted many trees for continuity, right into old age.

photo: Pamela Austin

Visitors fill Stanhoe Reading Room

Stanhoe’s Reading Room was packed with WI members and visitors

It was a very thought-provoking presentation, and the message after all these years of research, as well as being one of human compassion, was, “Anything is possible, no matter how difficult it may seem, so whatever takes your interest, follow it up.”

More details: Andrew Tatham’s Group Photograph Project

Posted by: Charles

Posted on: 8 March 2019

17 February 2019

Centenary lunch

Local celebrity Tim Bentinck entertains WI members at Brancaster.

On Saturday 16 February, Stanhoe & Barwick WI held their centenary lunch at Brancaster Sailing Club.

The ladies, and husbands, were treated to an excellent meal, followed by a talk from local celebrity Tim Bentinck. Tim is widely known for his role as David Archer in the BBC4 series, but, having established that his audience are not avid listeners, he spoke about his “other unusual ways of earning a living”. As well as acting roles and voiceovers, Tim is a computer programmer and music writer. Officially, he is best-known for his role as “conjoined twin, left, in Gnomeo and Juliet”!

Tim Bentinck and Pamela Austin

Tim Bentinck with WI President Pamela Austin

Tim entertained us with many humourous tales to round off a highly enjoyable afternoon.

Posted by: Charles

Posted on: 17 February 2019

8 February 2019

Votes for women

The story of Millicent Garrett Fawcett enthuses WI members.

Stanhoe and Barwick WI members were in for a treat at their February meeting when Hazel Gillingham, dressed as a suffragette, complete with sash in the suffragette colours of green, white and violet (“Give Women Votes”), spoke about Millicent Garrett Fawcett “the quiet suffragette”.

Born in 1847 into a large and wealthy Suffolk family, Millicent was always interested in women’s rights and education. She worked tirelessly as a suffragist (a non-militant suffragette) throughout her life, forming the National Union of Womens Suffrage Societies who succeeded in getting some women the vote in 1918, and all women the vote in 1928. She was made a Dame in recognition of her work in 1924.

photo: Rosemary Brown

Hazel Gillingham looking formidable in hat and suffragette sash

Hazel Gillingham in her suffragette outfit

In promoting education for women she co-founded Newnham College, Cambridge, for women only, in an era of male academic dominance.

The Fawcett Library, founded in 1926 and now holding all the paperwork regarding the fight for the rights of women, and the Fawcett Society still campaigning for the same, are her legacy, as well as the books which she wrote herself.

Our speaker supplemented her talk with photographs of Millicent Garrett Fawcett, a copy of the newspaper “Votes for Women” dated 1918, and 3 intrigueing colour postcards with different illustrations and wording, each with a suffrage message and probably intended for publicity for the movement. It was all so interesting.

To round off the afternoon members put their names forward for several events organised for our centenary year, including an upcoming members centenary lunch, and the planting of a tree and installation of a seat on the playing field next to the Village Hall. Everyone in the village is invited to attend the tree planting ceremony at 3pm on 11 March.

Posted by: Charles

Posted on: 8 February 2019

11 January 2019

WI reaches 100

Stanhoe WI members unveil a centenary plaque and meet a mayor.

The first meeting in this Centenary Year of Stanhoe and Barwick WI was a memorable one. A beautiful carved wooden plaque was unveiled in the Village Hall to commemorate the centenary and to mark our history in the WI movement.

photos: Rosemary Brown

WI members in front of the centenary plaque

WI members and speaker Carol Bower in front of the centenary plaque

On the theme of “Women Inspiring Women” our speaker was Carol Bower, a recent mayor of King’s Lynn and West Norfolk, who told us about her year in office. As well as chairing meetings of 65 Councillors her interest in the community came to the fore. It was a year of travelling all over West Norfolk to meet people, to meet organisations and businesses and to open events, mostly wearing her mayoral gold chain and often with the heavy robes and hat of office too.

Carol Bower

Carol Bower, ex-mayor of
King’s Lynn and West Norfolk

All of this was backed up with a series of photographs and funny stories. Far from being a totally serious time, Carol’s experiences involved riding on the back of a motorbike, taking part in a cycling event, climbing to the top of a very tall tower, and experiencing the archaeological dig at Sedgeford. Her mayoral portrait depicting the cliffs of Hunstanton in the background rather than a scene in King’s Lynn really showed the inclusiveness of her year.

It was an illuminating talk.

We later had a swift move through the business, addressing the six national Resolutions which we were required to vote on, involving mostly community-based ideas and women’s health issues. As well as discussing future events in our centenary year and showing the hampers which we all subscribed to as a gift to the carver of the plaque.

Posted by: Charles

Posted on: 11 January 2019

7 December 2018

WI good cheer

Stanhoe WI members get into the festive spirit.

Members of Stanhoe and Barwick WI had a very festive afternoon in December when Three’s Company entertained us with a selection of readings and poems on the theme of “Happy Christmas”.

Using the initial letters of each of those two words we were treated to snatches of carols, irreverent verses by UA Fanthorpe, and very funny nativity stories by Gervase Phinn.

It reminded us all of many Christmas-tides past, and introduced us to an amazing array of words connected with Christmas.

As this took place in a decorated room and was accompanied by mulled wine and mince pies it was a lovely start to the festive season enjoyed by everyone present.

Posted by: Charles

Posted on: 7 December 2018

2 November 2018

A good WI year

Stanhoe WI members look back on recent successes.

On a very wet afternoon in November a small group of members, including two new members, met together for the AGM of Stanhoe and Barwick WI.

Excellent reports of our activities were given by the secretary, treasurer, and president. Members had recently participated in an exhibition of craft items at the North Creake Community Action Day, had attended the area Federation Meeting at Rudham, had collected monies in support of the Baby Basics charity and ACWW, and had supplied and run a very successful cake stall in support of WI funds.

Plans were outlined for our upcoming centenary year, with a centenary activity in most months.

And we also re-elected Pamela Austin as our president, Valerie Robson as secretary and Julia Walton as treasurer, and welcomed Sandra Carr and Pam Protheroe onto the committee for the coming year. Thanks were given to retiring committee members.

In order to get to know each other more fully everyone had brought along an item which was special to them, to talk about. These ranged from a much loved Mrs Teddy, through a selection of rings – one of which was in memory of a Wesleyan preacher – to an apron and a Scottish dancing sash, a selection of books, a piece of music, photos, and a dangling wooden figure which had been brought back from the battlefield and was an example of “trench art”.

It was a remarkable afternoon.

Posted by: Charles

Posted on: 2 November 2018

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