People

Azal and Bok return to Devil’s End

Last Sunday an intergalactic peril once again threatened the sleepy village of Aldbourne. However, all was not lost and the planet was saved (again!) by the presence of U.N.I.T and the White Witch of Devil’s End, Olive Hawthorne.

More than forty years ago, Dr Who came to Aldbourne and defeated the Master on the village green. The cast and crew visited again with Reeltime Pictures in 1992 to make the documentary ‘Return to Devil’s End’.

During the summer this year, Reeltime Pictures worked with a supporting cast of locals to film the finishing sequences for ‘The White Witch of Devil’s End’ featuring Damaris Hayman; telling the story of Olive Hawthorne’s long life, and her guardianship of the village against supernatural foes.

The result is the long awaited triple DVD set now available on general release.  Olive Hawthorne’s life-story, the documentary from 1992 and a bonus disk of material gathered at conventions held in Aldbourne.

Damaris Hayman, now 88, was kind enough to endure some chilly weather to meet the brave men and women of U.N.I.T, and spoke kindly to her defeated adversary, the Master – all

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represented on this occasion by Johnny Who Entertainments. Then it was back into the warm at the Crown to meet with and thank locals who had assisted with the filming in the summer.

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Thomas Fairchild

Finding a peaceful half-hour to think about Thomas Fairchild in the early morning, an Aldbourne garden outside the window looking beautiful. Found this blog, and articles written this year about Thomas Fairchild – born Aldbourne 1667 – and the Vegetable Sermon this year at St Giles, Cripplegate.

Parks and Gardens UK

Thomas Fairchild (c.1667-1729); Department of Plant Sciences; http://www.artuk.org/artworks/thomas-fairchild-c-16671729-220972

Thomas Fairchild was one of the greatest horticulturists of the 18thc. But his contribution was not confined to his own age but extends right up to today. That might sound a bit over the top – and perhaps it is – but as you will soon discover I’m a great fan of this humble Hoxton nurseryman. Professional to his fingertips not only did his tiny nursery ground overflow with unusual plants, he fought to raise the profile and status of horticulture through the Worshipful Company of Gardeners,  was the first person known to have deliberately hybridized plants,  and the first to write about the pleasures and pitfalls of gardening in London in his book, The City Gardener.

Old St Leonard’s Church, Shoreditch which would have been the church Fairchild knew. Part of the tower collapsed during a service in 1716 & the church…

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The Vegetable Sermon

Parks and Gardens UK

St Giles Cripplegate
David Marsh, June 2017

Thomas Fairchild, the 18thc London gardener and subject of a recent post, was more than just a great London nurseryman and striver for professional unity and strength, he was also highly  inquisitive – or what his contemporaries would have called “curious”. He combined his intellectual curiosity with a strong religious faith and in his will he bequeathed £25 to the churchwardens of St Leonard’s Church in Shoreditch for an annual lecture to be given on the Tuesday after Pentecost.  He specified two possible subjects:  “The wonderful works of God in Creation” or “On the certainty of the resurrection of the dead, proved by certain changes of the animal and vegetable parts of Creation,” and this has resulted in the event being sometimes nicknamed the “Vegetable Sermon.”

The Arms of the Worshipful Company of Gardeners from the 1616 Charter

After a somewhat chequered history it…

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#MuseumWeek 2017 – Food for Thought

Parish News August 1972 Clifford Brown

Parish News August 1972

Clifford Brown and ‘the best fish and chips for miles’, with thanks to John and Paul Brown for sharing their family photos and for many entertaining chats via email and the Aldbourne Net Forum

2008.7028 Clifford Brown Home Guard 1944

Clifford Brown – centre front row with the drill trophy currently on display at Aldbourne Heritage Centre

Aldbourne Community Heritage Group

ACHG Scarecrow 2017

Here’s the amazing ACHG Scarecrow that guarded the Heritage Centre during the Aldbourne Scarecrow Trail last weekend – an ‘Ugly’ bird joining in with the “Fairy Tales & Musicals” theme. A mixed weekend weatherwise, but as ever a fabulous family event organised by the hardworking team at Aldbourne Churches Together – I think there may still be people out there hoping to solve just one more clue!

Link to the Aldbourne page on the Whitton Team Website If you want to see more about the 2017 Scarecrows visit Aldbourne Scarecrow Trail on Facebook

In 2016, the Scarecrow Trail featured “Award Winners” and the ACHG paid homage to this brave Dabchick whose portrait still graces the Officers’ Mess at RAF Odiham.  Do you know her name?   Find out more about the Aldbourne Community Heritage Group and the Aldbourne Heritage Centre:  www.aldbourneheritage.org.uk and on Facebook ACHG Scarecrow Trail 2016

New Swindon Museum and Art Gallery

Read the latest news about this project, including the appointment of an interim Director.   Keep up to date with the exciting exhibitions and news from the existing Swindon Museum & Art Gallery including The Bomford Gift (until 1 July 2017):

Between 1943 and 1976, local art collector and landowner HJP (or ‘Jimmy’) Bomford gave 21 works of art to Swindon. These were instrumental in encouraging Swindon to establish a modern art collection for the town. Bomford’s gift included drawings and paintings by some of Britain’s best known artists, including Graham Sutherland, Ben Nicholson, LS Lowry and Henry Moore. This exhibition brings together many of the works Bomford gave to Swindon to celebrate his generosity and vision.

Find out about the Swindon Museum and Art Gallery Trust

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Nugents of Antigua – Muriel Foster

Muriel Foster (Ivy Cottage) is remembered fondly in Aldbourne – not least because she used to pay for the children of the village to have a free ride at Scarrots Fair (pictured here with George Scarrott).  Muriel was also a member of the Wiltshire Archaeological and Natural History Society, alongside Miss Emily Sophia Todd (Hampstead Cottage) and Major Arthur Lockyer Ingpen (One Ash).

Muriel Foster was not a Nugent – but both her brother Osbern and her sister Gladys married Nugents!  She was aunt or great aunt to many Nugent nephews and nieces, as well as to Fosters, Fowlers and Robertsons, some of whom lived in Aldbourne, the village she chose as her home.

Find out more about Muriel Foster on the The Nugents of Antigua website