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WYENOT NEWS - ROSS-ON-WYE
1
Wyenot News - The Weekly News Magazine for Ross-on-Wye, Herefordshire
Issue No. 212 - Wednesday, 20th August 2008
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IN THIS ISSUE
Page 1 [New Format News - Wormelow Death - Record A Level results - Rock and Roots - Cider Festival - Phone Boxes - Macmillan Market - NASA gets the better view - Lions' Competition Winners]
Page 2 [In Memory of Cyril - Planning refusal overturned - Music - Bus Passes - Lions help student - Letters Nature - Wx]
Page 3 [Hereford should be UK's next cycling city and the rest of the news from around the region]
WNTV ROSS-ON-WYE WEEKLY TELEVISION NEWS
has been moved to the Wyenot News front page
THE NEW WYENOT NEWS FORMAT

I hope that you like (or will get used to) the new format of the 'Wyenot News' home page. I am well aware that some people do not like change, and of the old saying, 'If it ain't broke, don't fix it'. However, although the old system was working reasonably well, there were two reasons for my making this change.

The first was for new visitors to 'Wyenot'. Not everybody's screen resolution is the same and those using 800 x 600 pixel resolution, see less of the page in one go than those using higher resolution (most people these days). With the three 'boost' photos appearing in virtually the same place on both the 'Wyenot.com' home page and the 'Wyenot News' home page, some people - mainly those who just tend to look at the pictures - were getting confused, imagining that nothing had changed when they 'clicked' to go to 'THIS WEEK IN ROSS-ON-WYE'.

I hope that the change will resolve the above issue - an issue I have been meaning to get around to resolving for years.

The second reason is server space. As I mentioned last week, although I will never delete old copies of the photographic news, my 5 gigabytes on the web server is rapidly filling. It is very expensive for me to purchase more (which I have done up until now) and I feel, quite honestly, that I need to start making money rather than spending it on 'Wyenot News', which is, after all, by far the most time consuming and expensive aspect of running 'Wyenot.com' as a whole.

I need to start deleting older WNTV programmes from the server to make way for new. I mentioned last week that I would keep the eight most recent programmes available as back issues. On thinking again, I can manage to keep more than eight however I am going to have to start deleting some back programmes. (I shall try my best to make these the least popular programmes - those from low news weeks.)

Having the WNTV programme on the 'Wyenot News' home page with the index of back programmes in one place on the 'WNTV Video' page makes it easier for me to remove old programmes, without having to search through back issues of 'Wyenot News' to find and delete them. The new format will not help me in this respect at the moment, but it will, very much so, in the future.

Please let me know what you think of the new news front page format, particularly if you can see ways in which I can improve it.

Thank you,

Alan



Investigation Into Unexplained Wormelow Death Continues

Four people from Much Birch, who were arrested by police in connection with the unexplained death of Mr. Langdon have been released on police bail. Mr Langdon's body was found in the grounds of the cottage in Wormelow, in which he lived and police have released further details of the incident.

They confirm that they were called to the premises on Thursday evening, where they found Mr langdon's body lying on the remains of a bonfire in the grounds.

Forensic teams have been carrying out an extensive examination of the property while police teams have been carrying out house to house enquiries in the area. Police are treating the death as unexplained at present and were hoping that the results of the post mortem, forensic tests and other available evidence will enable them to focus the enquiry in a positive direction.

Several people were arrested in connection with the investigation and police also sealed off an address in Much Birch, where they also conducted a forensic search.

Detectives from the Operation Facility team are today continuing with their enquiries. Results of the post mortem examination by a Home Office pathologist proved to be inconclusive and the investigation has yet to determine the cause of Mr Langdon's death.

Temporary Detective Chief Inspector Dave LLewellin, who is leading the investigation, said, 'Mr Langdon has been officially missing since 4th August and we believe that where he has been, what he has been doing and who he has been with are of extreme importance to our enquiries. By naming him now we hope that anyone who knew him - or just recognized him - will be able to help us fill in the gaps as to what happened to him during the 10 days prior to his body being found.'

Police would like to hear from anyone who can shed light on the movements of Mr Langdon in the days leading up to his death, from around 4th August onwards. Anybody with information should contact the Operation Facility Incident Room at Hereford Police Station on 08457 444888, or call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.


Record A Level Results at John Kyrle High School

Record 'A' Level results have fully justified Ofsted's comments that 'John Kyrle is an outstanding School and Sixth Form Centre.'

Once again Year 13 had 50% of all entries scoring an A or B grade, with A-C grades increasing from 70% to 82%. These results coupled with an overall pass rate of 98% and a UCAS Average Points Score of 286 per student, are all the more impressive when it is noted that they do not include General Studies.

Most departments scored top grades with extremely high A-B grades overall including Technology with 87%; Sociology with 80%; Geography and Geology both with 66%; Philosophy and Ethics with 62%; Maths and Biology both with 60% gaining the highest grades. Headteacher, Nigel Griffiths, praised his students and their parents, staff and Governors, saying he was delighted with the continued excellent results.

Continued . . .


These students are absolutely delighted with their results. Ref: DSC_DSC_6809

'Students' successes have allowed them to access their first choice university courses across the UK for this September.' These include Head Boy and Head Girl, Connor Moriarty-Osborne and Emma Crawford who will take places at Bristol to read Mathematics and a scholarship to read International Politics at University of Wales, respectively. Senior Prefects Tim Alston will read PPE (Politics, Philosophy and Economics) at York and Liz Nicholls will read for a Nursing Degree at Birmingham.

Other notable offers include Alan Christopher who will study Physics at Sheffield; Arthur Degen-Knifton, Theoretical Physics at Birmingham; Rachel Hiley, English at Goldsmiths; Claire Pritchard, Psychology at Cardiff; Ian Fenton, Civil Engineering at Loughborough and Kirsty Priest who will study Medical Biology at Bristol.

Mr Griffiths added, 'In addition to our own students' successes, I am especially pleased to see excellent achievements from students who continue to join us from other schools across Herefordshire, Gloucestershire and Monmouthshire. The increased investment in the school with its 1 million Sixth Form and Adult Learning Centre, new MFL Learning suite and Astro-Turf has been money well spent.

These results are a good way to celebrate the first anniversary of our being Herefordshire's first High Performing Multi-Specialist School. Last year we were in the top 10-15% of schools and colleges as judged by Value Added scores and this year should see us move even higher up this particular table. I am, as ever, ambitious for even more improvements in years to come.'

Rob Wallace, Head of Sixth Form identified the key drivers for this continued success. He said, 'Outstanding teaching with a relentless focus upon high standards, coupled with the individual care given to students and the school's close partnership with parents led to these excellent achievements. Students have also been widely involved in sport, music, drama and community service throughout their two years with us. Taken together this further confirms the strength of John Kyrle's Sixth Form experience.'


High achievers, Kirsty Priest, Liz Nichols, Harvey Powell, Alan Christopher, Connor Moriarty-Osbourne,
Claire Stevens and Ellie Stowe. Ref: DSC_DSC_6816


Rock and Roots Organizers Fail to Secure Licence

Herefordshire Council has announced that it 'bent over backwards' to help the organizers of the proposed Rock n Roots Festival, which was due to take place over August Bank Holiday at Much Marcle, but the organizers failed to fulfil their obligations to enable the necessary licence to be issued.

Herefordshire Council's regulatory subcommittee therefore, had no alternative at their meeting last Wednesday but to decide that it could not issue a licence due to a combination of errors in the way the application was made. The promoter failed to display sufficient notices on the site to comply with the regulations. He also failed to place the required public notice in a local newspaper as well as failing to serve the application on the police.

Councillor John Jarvis, cabinet member for environment, said, 'The promoter has tried to blame the council for this, saying that the decision will harm the local music scene but this is far from the truth. Herefordshire Council supports a great number of diverse events each year, including the enormously successful Big Chill near Ledbury as well as smaller, more local music and food / drink festivals.

We welcome the opportunity to host new events and actively encourage people who wish to take advantage of our beautiful countryside and wonderful facilities, to approach us with ideas. However, these events have to be professionally managed and licences applied for in the usual way in line with stringent national legislation, which the council itself has to follow and is monitored on.

In this instance, the local community was up in arms because the organizer of the festival had not communicated with them via the necessary public notices and made them aware of the implications for the community in holding this large festival in Much Marcle. The council's regulatory subcommittee had to consider all these issues and decided that the application had not been properly made.

This situation could have been avoided if the correct information had been provided in the first place. The applicant was helped extensively with making the application and the licensing team bent over backwards to help the processing of the application. Organizers of all events are strongly encouraged to make contact with the licensing team at a very early stage in the planning of an event. We are aware that people will be disappointed if they have purchased tickets and we will be monitoring the situation regarding refunds.'


Looking Forward to a Great Cider Festival - But Book Soon!

The Broome Farm Three Day Cider Festival will be taking place soon, beginning on Friday, 29th August and tickets are selling fast. We mention this because last year, the festival was extremely popular. Tickets sold out and many local people who turned up on the Saturday night, expecting to get in were disappointed. Maximum visitor numbers were reached and the gates had to be closed.

If you wish to attend this year's event, it is important that you book or you may possibly not be able to get in. Bookings can be made by emailing info@rosscider.com.

With the festival coming up, last week I went to Ross Cider with journalist, Matt Carroll from the Observer. Matt was trying out some cider making for himself, I was taking the photographs and the full page article was published in last Sunday's 'Escape' section of the Observer. The article mentioned cider apple picking visits to the Farm and as a result, a lot of enquiries have already been made. I have been asked to point out here that these apple picking breaks cannot take place until late September - when there are lots of apples to pick. People have been trying to book for the bank Holiday weekend, and this is too early for most of the apples.

If you would like to see the article but did not get a copy of Sunday's Observer, it can be read on the Observer web site.

Pictured below are journalist, Matt Carroll and myself on the back of the tractor. We rode to the orchard, sitting on the trailer, which was an experience in itself. The other photos were taken at last year's festival - during the Saturday night music session and at the Sunday market. Why not book while you still have the chance and come along? The festival is always a great weekend event with plenty to eat, drink, some great live music and a terrific Sunday Market - which is free to attend - you can just turn up for the market!


Ref: DSC_DSC_6489


Ref: DSC_DSC_3090

Ref: DSC_DSC_0694

Seven Phone Boxes in Ross Area Under Threat

Seven out of the eighteen telephone boxes that remain under threat of removal by BT are in Ross-on-Wye and the surrounding areas. The kiosks in question are sited at The avenue, Ross, Gloucester Road, Ross, Gorsley, St. Owens Cross, Perrystone Hill, Bromsash and Pontshill.

BT announced that they wanted to scrap 110 phone boxes in the county as they did not make enough profit from them. After Herefordshire Council managed to secure an extension of the public consultation period from Ofcom, they have received evidence from the communities involved in support of retaining 92 of these. However, unless evidence is received by Friday 26th September, BT will have no hesitation in closing the remaining 18 boxes.

Many rural communities are worried about the proposed closures, as in some parts of the county the kiosks are deemed the only emergency life line, as mobile phone coverage is limited.

Other telephone boxes under threat are two near Leominster, one near Ledbury, one in Hereford's Westfaling Street, and the rest in communities dotted around the county. A full list is available on the council's website www.herefordshire.gov.uk.

The council had previously identified 111 boxes at risk, but BT whisked one away from the village of Monkland near Leominster last month without any consultation.

People concerned about losing their local pay phone can contact Anthony Bush on 01432 260611; or email: abush@herefordshire.gov.uk or write to him at Herefordshire Council, Plough Lane, PO Box 4, Hereford, HR4 0XH.


Grinding the Street Organ for Macmillan

Ross Macmillan Cancer Support Group held their annual sale at Ross Market on Friday, raising a staggering £1,420 towards the Renton Appeal.

There were lots of stalls there, including the popular cakes stand, who sold over three hundred of their delicious cakes on the day. The Sunnyside Quilters had some lovely handmade goods for sale, including some cute teddy's who were all named. There was knitwear available and some beautifully handmade cards.

Alan Turner was also there, keeping everybody entertained with his street organ and encouraging them to join in with some of the songs.

Well done to all concerned. You did a fantastic job and long may your good work continue.


Ref: DSC_DSC_6818


Ref: DSC_DSC_6819


Ref: DSC_DSC_6820

NASA gets the better view but we get to meet Sir Patrick

Whilst I was standing in Three Crosses Road, Ross-on-Wye on Friday, 1st August photographing and filming the partial phase of what was a total solar eclipse, NASA's Terra satellite was rounding the top of the globe. It was making its way from the eastern tip of Siberia and across the Arctic Ocean towards northern Norway and northwest Russia and, turning its camera towards the earth, it captured this unique view of the moon's shadow during the total phase of the same eclipse.

In the area shown in the image (left), the sun was completely obscured for about two minutes. As Earth rotated, the shadow moved southeast across the surface. At the same time, the satellite crossed the Arctic with its path nearly perpendicular to the eclipse.

For me, a very nice thing has come out of filming this particular eclipse. Some months, possibly even years ago, during a low news week, I ran an article about a brief communication I had with Patrick Moore as a 13 year old boy.

As I mentioned in that article, Sir Patrick Moore is one of the few well known television personalities I would actually go out of my way to meet and when I filmed the eclipse last week, I sent him a copy. I did this for two reasons. With that particular Friday being a very cloudy day in general, my film might have been the only film from England in existence. (This has happened before when my 2003 eclipse photograph was shown on Sky News.) I also wanted to write to Sir Patrick to explain the influence he has personally had on my life. Thanks to Sir Patrick, astronomy has stuck with me and has been a life long passion, which I am still as passionate about to this day as I was as a child.

To my surprise, the following day, Tina was in the shower, I was stressing over something not going right on my laptop computer when the phone rang. I answered it, somewhat agitated - that way one does when it rings at the most awkward of moments...

'Hello Alan, Patrick Moore here,' the voice at the other end announced. I thought it was my brother playing a practical joke. It was not a joke however. It really was Sir Patrick Moore and we had a very long conversation, during which we spoke about just general personal stuff.

Sir Patrick came across during the conversation as extremely friendly - almost as though we had known one another personally for years. Sir Patrick has invited Tina and I, along with our friend, Roger Lovell to lunch, at his home in Selsea and has agreed to be interviewed for WNTV. This is one September lunch date to which we are all looking forward, very much.


NASA's shot of the moon's shadow in the area which experienced totality during the 2008 solar eclipse.

My shot of the sun during partial phase of the same eclipse, experienced in Three Crosses Road, Ross-on-Wye.

Lions Colouring Competition Winners.

One of the many competitions organized by Ross Lions Club during Carnival Week was a free, childrens colouring competition and over thirty children entered, all of whom were very keen to show off their skills. There were some very good pieces entered, but unlike most of the other winners in the Lions' competitions who were presented with their prizes on Carnival Day, the colouring competition was judged later.

The judges consisted of Councillor John Davies the Mayor of Ross, Keith Wilding the Ross Lions President and Lion Andrew Middlecote, the organizer of the event. After due deliberation the winners were; in the under five age group, Alfie Walters of Ross, the 5 to 8 years was won by Alfie's sister, Charlie Walters and in the over 8 age group Amy Jones of Gloucester came out on top. It must be said here that the Jones family attend practically every event the Ross Lions put on and participate in all the contests, which is why they get a mention regularly in these reports.

All the winners received a certificate and a lovely pack of artist's materials. The runners up in each category received a certificate. Any of the entrants who wish to get their work back can collect them from the Heritage Centre in the Market House at the end of the summer holidays.

If you would like to see some of the colourful entries, they will be on display in Ross Heritage Centre until September.


The three lucky winners are Alfie Walters, Charlie Walters and Amy Jones

What's Happening in Ross This Week?

Friday, 22nd August is Mischa Kopec's birthday! It's probably a lot of other people's too, but Mischa is celebrating his birthday in a very special way. Last year, Mischa, along with many other young people lost a very dear friend, Dean Fulford in a tragic accident on the A40. Dean's friends want to make sure he is not forgotten and are raising money, along with the youth service for a memorial bench at the skate park in Dean's memory.

Mischa is raising money via a sponsored waxing which will take place at The Prince of Wales on Friday evening from 7:30pm. Bekki and Shaun will be entertaining people for half an hour, to warm things up a little, then Mischa's moment will come. There will be live music performed during the rest of the evening. Please come along and support Mischa at this event.

On Saturday, Funkosphere will be performing in the function room at the Prince of Wales. Go along and get down to their really funky sound.

Jacqui and Dave of the White Lion Inn, Wilton have arranged for popular local band Double Barrel to play at the pub on Sunday evening from 8pm. This band play all your favourite rock covers, so, as most of you probably don't have to be up too early on Monday, why not go along and enjoy an evening of great entertainment.

On Bank Holiday Monday, the Border Counties Vintage Club are holding their annual road run. The vehicles will leave the Yew Tree Inn at Peterstow at approximately 10 am, making their way through forty miles of beautiful Herefordshire countryside and returning to the Yew Tree at around 3pm. There will be lots of vehicles, stationary engines and stalls etc. for you to enjoy and 50% of the profits are being donated to Macmillan.

Have a great holiday weekend and we'll see you next week.


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Dave and Jacqui Newman would like to welcome you to the White Lion 16th Century Riverside Inn. Situated right on the banks of the River Wye at Ross, the White Lion is a picturesque local inn with an interesting history and is noted for its spectacular river views. The White Lion has long been a favourite place to relax by both local people and tourists alike.

The White Lion's extensive and picturesque gardens reach right down to the river's edge and are a wonderful place to enjoy views of the river. It is a great spot to watch the local otters, nesting swans and other wildlife.

Click here for further details on the White Lion Inn.

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CAMRA Good Beer Guide 2008

 

THE WYENOT NEWS DEADLINE

The absolute deadline for Wyenot News stories and other items is 12:00, midday on Tuesday, for inclusion in the following day's edition.

PLEASE NOTE HOWEVER: This is an absolute deadline and not the time I am asking for articles to be sent in. Mondays and Tuesdays here at 'Wyenot News' are Hell with by far, the most events I cover occurring at the weekend. The photography that the public sees happening is only one tiny part of the whole picture (please excuse the pun) of running this weekly news publication and the bits of prep that people do not see, are actually the most time consuming part of getting the story out.

If at all possible, please send your story in as early as you can, rather than wait until the very last minute, so that I can have at least a fighting chance of getting to bed before 3:00 am every Tuesday and Wednesday morning after what has lately become two 18 hour working days on the trot.

Thank you very much for your understanding and help.

Alan


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