Greetings from Bagshot
The weather this year has been good for plants - warm but not scorching and a reasonable amount of rain. Garden flowers have done particularly well and farmers seem happy.We are now well into a programme of roadworks on the M3 to make it a "Smart Motorway". The road was originally built, as with most of our motorways, as three lanes plus a hard shoulder which serves as a refuge for vehicles that break down and as a route for emergency vehicles in the event of an accident. "Smart Motorway" seems to me to be a euphenism for hard shoulder running - its use at busy times as a carriageway under the control of signs on overhead gantries. However this 'upgrade' involves a lot more than just putting in the gantries - the hard shoulder was never intended to take any significant traffic and so has to be dug up and relaid with a new foundation that is suitable for heavy traffic. This results in lane closures and a lot more traffic on the A30 through the village. The first 'smart motorway' I encountered was the southern end of the M1 - and frankly I hate it. If the inside lane were consistently under gantry control it might be OK but this seems to swap with permanent 4-lane running with no hard shoulder and the likes of me constantly trying to work out just what the pattern is on the bit of road I am driving on. We will have to wait and see how it is arranged on the M3.
Updates to the website since the Christmas newsletter include
- Dave Berry has wriiten of his time with the Bagshot Concert Band including playing carols in The Square at 9am on Christmas Day morning! And Dave Charsley has contributed his memories of the band in the 1930-40s.
- John Coombs has added to his recollections including Kemps Coal Yard and Barnard's Fish & Chips.
- Roland has contributed information from censuses about several of the public houses.
- The Archeaological Trust's use of the the old Police Station is about to be brought to an end, though what other use the council have for the property is unclear.
- Some information about gamekeeper George Wheeler.
- Pepa Terol writes of her time in Bagshot working at The Pantiles and at various other venues run by the same owners.
- Tim Wild asks if there was another radio shop in the village called something like Comptoms. He has also replied to the question about VLT paints.
- Gary has a runner's up medal from an early competition for the Connaught Cup.
- David Brooks has contributed to the information about Pinewood.
- Ken P has written to say that the Lupin Cafe featured in a "Dixon of Dock Green" episode in 1973.
- Alan has added his contribution to the Bowyer - Tagg material.
- Pippa Anderson has identified the location and history of Bellevue Farm.
- Prompted by Shirley's recollection of RAOS boys attending Camberley schools, John Billingham has added the names he recalls.
- Graham Searle from the Bagshot Cricket Club writes that they are researching the history of the Club, particularly in the 19th century. They will be pleased to hear from anyone who has any information or old photographs. The Waterer and James families played a very large part in the development of the club but they have not been able to trace any of their descendants to be able to ask if they have any records or memorabilia.
- Desmond Logan is trying to trace Malcome Douglas who was station master at Bagshot, Camberley and Ascot in the 1960's.
- David Jacobs wonders why there is a bridge over the railway at the back of what was Notcutts Garden Centre. He points out that it leads to the woods behind but seems a big structure for just a field or wood. Any ideas?
- Where were Fairview Cottages, Guildford Road, and do they still exist?
HM the Queen's 90th BirthdayWe celebrated HM Queen Elizabeth's 90th birthday on St George's Day, Sat 23 April 2016, with a parade and street party outside St Anne's Church.
The afternoon's events were preceded in the
morning with preparations
including hanging bunting and bringing in tables and chairs from the
Parish Hall and the BPFA Pavilion, and setting up the few stalls that
would accompany the party. Then the introduction of the obligatory
Traffic Management Plan to facilitate the closure of about 100 yards of
road in front of the Church and Vicarage. Now the Scout's leaders could
erect a marquee across the road (no doubt then the road is closed)
and put the chairs for the band in it, while others set up tables and
chairs. The tables were covered with white paper, which proved to be
quite a challenge in the wind. Pots of crayons were put out
and the children encouraged to draw pictures. I trust that their
parents made clear that this was not a practice to try at home!
The afternoon started with
the Church bells being rung and the Scouts and Guides marching down
from the pavilion. At the church they formed up and re-affirmed the
promise they made when they joined the movement. This is a Scout
tradition carried out each St George's Day - though seldom in such a
Group Captain Marcus Wills CVO OBE
regaled the assembly with stories of his time flying RAF VC10 aircraft
transporting Her Majesty the Queen and other members of our and foreign
Children wearing crowns and waving flags escorted in a lovely sponge birthday cake. Everyone sang Happy Birthday and the National Anthem, the Vicar gave a blessing for Her Majesty and the village, and we toasted the Queen with a drop of bubbly.
Musical entertainment was provided throughout the afternoon by Bagshot Concert Band and by saxophonist Bob Webb. The unseasonally cold weather did not dampen anyone's enthusiasm and a good time was had by all.
Village day - 25 June 2016
Bagshot Business Association organise "Village Days" once or twice a year when the High Street is taken over for stalls and entertainment. This year's featured a display of vintage and classic cars which lined the High Street. Entertainment was provided by bands and singers at three different location, and by the Morris Dancers. The weather was kind, though not hot.
Swinley ForestSwinley Forest is the Crown Estate land to the north of the village. I have previously reported on the extensive forestry work being carried - felling lots of pine that has reached the end of its life and replanting with mixed deciduous trees. While the result looks a mess in the short term I am sure that in the fullness of time the woodland will be very pleasant. The most recent work has been grubbing out vast areas of rhodedendrons. This follows their removal from the edge of Rapley Lake some years ago. Again the result is tracts of bare, and apparently barren, ground beneath the trees. While rhodedendron are attractive when in flower that are not native, are invasive and completely suppress the diverse flora one would normally expect to find in English woodland.
The two photograhs below were taken near Rapley Lake. The first shows cleared land waiting to be repopulated by native plants, and the second a corner of the lake with cleared land beyond. The flowering water lilies already demonstrating the benefit of the clearance.
With best wishes to you and
those you hold dear.