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The place for information on Ross-on-Wye and the Wye Valley

Wyenot News - The Weekly News Magazine for Ross-on-Wye, Herefordshire
Issue No. 228 - Wednesday, 17th December 2008
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Page 1 [WNTV NEWS - Alan Weston - Letter - Have you seen Holly? - Your opinion - Oops - Tree - Carols - Car crash]
Page 2 [Ozzie retires - Youth Forum - Xmas presence - Vanessa Brann - Ross Lions - WyeTots - Jiveoholics - The End]
Page 3 [Krunch - Mike Arnison's photos - Bransford EOC - Wildlife - Stay safe and healthy - River levels - Astronomy]

Page 4

[Special Crew - Lights - Netball team - Planning - EnviroAbility - Plan for real - Flu Advice - Weather station]
Page 5 [Fromes Hill now even safer and the rest of the news from around the region]
Ozzie Retires From Fire & Rescue Service

Wyenot News was delighted to be invited to Steve (Ozzie) Bond's retirement party, which took place at the Plough Inn, Overross on Saturday. Ozzie had been a fire fighter for 23 years and has enjoyed his time as part of the Fire & Rescue Service.

Whilst everybody was waiting for the guest of honour to arrive, a loud beeper went off, signalling to six of the fire fighters there that a fire was in progress and off they went. Fortunately, the emergency was a chip pan fire that had been doused before the group's arrival at the premises. After ensuring that the house in question was safe, they still managed to get back to their soft drinks at The Plough before Ozzie arrived!

Some great entertainment had been arranged for those attending the party, by way of popular local trio, Kevin, Martin and Roger of The Double Barrel Band. The band performed 'Nowhere Man' especially for Alan before Kev spoke to us for WNTV News.

Crew Manager Steve James and Watch Manager Neil Rhodes present Ozzie with an axe. Ref: DSC_8471

The gang's all here to wish Ozzie a happy retirement on Saturday. Ref: DSC_8475

Kevin of the Double Barrel Band talks to WNTV. Ref: DSC_1098

Meet Ricky and Troy of Ross Youth Forum

Wyenot News would like to introduce you to Ricky Barlow, (pictured right) and Troy Hill, Chair and Vice Chair of Ross Youth Forum. Ricky got in contact with us when he was elected Chair of the Forum, telling us of their plans and hopes for the future of Ross-on-Wye.

Impressed by the professionalism of their approach and their commitment to helping to improve the town, we invited Ricky and Troy along to Wyenot HQ to tell us all about the Forum and their plans to reintroduce a cinema facility in Ross. You can hear what they had to say in this week's WNTV News programme.

Eric, the Wyenot Newshound joins in the interview with Troy Hill and Ricky Barlow. Ref: DSC_8490

Operation Christmas Presence 2008

Operation Christmas Presence 2008 is firmly under way in Herefordshire and intends to make the festive period a safe and enjoyable time for everyone in the county.

The operation is a high profile police initiative run by West Mercia Constabulary each Christmas, aimed at reducing the effects of alcohol-related crime on communities. It aims to crack down on drink driving, drink-fuelled violence and drink spiking.

Chief Inspector Shane Hancock, leading the initiative in Herefordshire, said, 'There will be a visibily higher presence of officers on the streets on key dates - Friday 19th, Saturday 20th, Wednesday 24th, Saturday 27th and Wednesday 31st December - to reassure revellers and prevent problems. We will also be working with colleagues from Herefordshire Council and the Fire Service on these days to ensure that fire and licensing regulations are being adhered to.'

West Mercia Constabulary offer five top tips for a safe and Happy Christmas this year:

Don't drink too much
Be aware of drink spiking
Look after your friends
Don't drink and drive
Walk away from trouble.

They are also encouraging people to think about their actions when they are out, using the 'If you could turn back the clock' theme on three different posters being displayed around the towns.

Chief Inspector Hancock added, 'We will also be sending Christmas Cards to all those who fell foul of the law last Christmas, reminding them to behave this year or risk a fine and / or imprisonment. We hope they will accept the message in the cards in the spirit in which they were intended and modify their behaviour this festive season. We want everyone in Herefordshire to have a cracking Christmas!'

More Christmas Presence

To complement the Operation Christmas Presence 2008 initiative, other groups have come forward to help play their part to make Herefordshire a safe and fun place to enjoy Christmas.

Following their magnificent success in BBC1's Last Choir Standing, the Hereford Police Male Choir will make their Presence felt at Sainsbury's supermarket, Barton Yard, Hereford from 7.30pm on Friday, 19th December 2008. They will be serenading shoppers with a variety of tunes to get everyone in the Christmas spirit. The Choir's recent 'Still Standing' CD launch has been a runaway success. The initial 1,000 CDs have already been sold and a further 1,000 have been ordered and will be on sale at the Sainsbury's event for just 8. Alternatively, they can be ordered via at 9 (which includes p&p). The proceeds from the sales of the CDs are being used to swell the coffers of the Police Community Fund, which assists those in need as a result of crime.

Hereford Baptist Church are also helping to make the festive period safer for revellers. They already run a tea and coffee facility from the church in Commercial Road for late night clubbers on a Saturday night. This Friday, 19th, they will be offering the same facilities from a trailer in High Town.

The Reverend Anthony Wareham, Minister at the Baptist Church, said, 'We welcome this opportunity to extend our interaction with late night revellers celebrating at Christmas. Anything we can do to help make the streets safer and enhance the enjoyment of people on a night out has to be beneficial.'


Make the most of your special day at Orles Barn Hotel.
Orles Barn Wilton, Ross-on-Wye, Herefordshire. HR9 6AE
Tel: 01989 562155 Fax: 01989 768470 Email:

Mark Eden - car valeting service  based in Symonds Yat East.
Morris Bricknell, Chartered Surveyors, Stroud House, 30, Gloucester Road, Ross-on-Wye, Herefordshire. HR9 5LE.


-Tel: 01989 768320

Old Court Farm - Self Catering at Symonds Yat.

Walford, Ross-on-Wye

Quality Childcare from birth to 11 years

Jo Gilmour Ofsted registered Childminder

Please call 07876 683239 or email for vacancies

'The Halt' Self Catering, Homs Road, Ross-on-Wye, Herefordshire. Broome Farm B & B and Restaurant, Peterstow.

Vanessa A Winner in Brussels

Congratulations to Vanessa Brann who won the 5km Road Race which was held in conjunction with the European Cross Country Championships in Brussels on Sunday, 14th December. Vanessa, a 16 year old student of John Kyrle High School has constantly improved throughout this season and has recently moved to train with Bristol & West Athletics Club to help further her career.

Vanessa came 4th in the BMC Cross Country championships at Bristol on the 24th November and took part in the McCain UK Cross Challenge at Sefton Park, Liverpool, incorporating the European Championship trials and ran against all the countries top class Cross Country runners, including Emily Pidgeon who came 4th in the European Championships in Brussels on Sunday.

Well done Vanessa!

Tired but happy, Vanessa holds her trophy for winning the 5km Road Race in Brussels.

Vanessa giving it her all in Brussels

Basement Youth Trust Benefits From Lions' Generosity

Ross Lions President, Keith Wilding, handing a cheque
to the treasurer of the Basement Youth Trust, Alex Orr.

The Basement Youth Trust, working out of the YZone in Hill Street, Ross, runs a weekly football session for its young people. Because there is nowhere suitable to run the sessions in Ross they have to use the Astro Turf arena at the Leisure Centre, Monmouth. To get the youngsters to Monmouth they have to hire a minibus.

All of this costs money so the Basement Trust contacted the Ross Lions Club and asked if they could help. The Lions Club have given financial help to the Basement Youth Trust for many things over the past few years and this time they did not hesitate to give a grant of 250 as they felt it was such a worthy cause, helping the young of the town and district.

They know the Trust needs more funds but they have to spread their grants out fairly and the Lions Club wished them all the best in raising the rest of the money required. If any other organization in the area has any charitable funds available then the Basement Youth Trust would be glad if you could contact them.

Besides football, they have an open door helping to get young people off the street, provide singing lessons, break dancing, circus skills, graphic design etc. All of these sessions are very well attended and every four months they put on a concert to show what they have learned.

If you want to help please contact Keith Wilding on 01989 562145 or Bernard Fowkes on 01989 563337.

WyeTots Have Fun Raising Money

The children at WyeTots have been having a lot of fun lately, taking part in their first Wallace and Gromit fund raising tea party, which took place on Friday, 5th December.

They all worked very hard towards the event, making money boxes, fridge magnets, cards and cakes to sell and their parents enjoyed going to see and buy their wares.

Fifty five pounds was raised on the day for childrens hospitals and hospices across the UK.

Proprietor of WyeTots, Jo Gilmour also hosted a coffee morning for the same cause and she would like to thank everyone who went along and supported the event.

WyeTots getting everything ready for the Wallace and Gromit Tea Party

Jump to The Jiveoholics at The White Lion on Sunday

The extremely talented, most energetic and the very best Jump 'n' Jive outfit, The Jiveoholics will be getting people up on their feet this coming Sunday when they pay a return visit to The White Lion Inn, Wilton.

The band have recently returned from a tour of North Wales and it is getting more difficult to book them locally these days, so grab your chance while you still have it! The beat, the humour and drive of Johnny Cool and the guys are hard to resist. Don't fight it. Go along to the White Lion on Sunday and dance the night away to the sound of The Jiveoholics.

You'll be so impressed, you'll probably want to take home a copy of their brilliant CD 'Jiveolution.' We look forward to seeing you there from 8pm onwards.

The Jiveoholics guarantee a great evening's entertainment

The Launch of The End

A road safety campaign has been launched by the Safer Roads Partnership in West Mercia and highlights the potential consequences of drink or drug driving to young motorists across Herefordshire over the Christmas period.

The campaign, called 'The End', uses a story board approach to show how choosing to drive after having consumed alcohol or drugs could bring 'The End' to much of what young people take for granted in their lives. The campaign aims to show that alcohol and drugs impair an individual's ability to drive safely, increasing the risk of them causing a collision and injuring or killing themselves or someone close to them.

Driving while unfit due to drugs is against the law. This applies to prescribed drugs as well as illegal ones. Many people are probably unaware of the effects of drugs on their driving ability. Worryingly the use of illegal drugs by the younger generation has been found to be increasing. Nearly half of 16 to 24 year olds in England and Wales are reported as using cannabis at least once and 39% reported to having taken hallucinogens (British Medical Association). According to recent research by Auto Trader, 30% of 17 to 24 year old motorists drink and drive and one in five drive while under the influence of drugs.

The campaign will feature on bus backs, billboards, within pubs and clubs throughout Herefordshire and on local radio. The campaign also highlights the impact of being caught drink or drug driving; up to 6 months in prison, a minimum 12 month driving ban, a fine of up to 5,000 and a criminal record which could lead to job loss and difficulty finding another job. An endorsement for a drink driving offence remains on a driving licence for 11 years. Causing death by careless driving when under the influence of drink or drugs carries a maximum 14 year prison sentence, a minimum 2 year driving ban and a requirement to pass an extended driving test.

One of the campaign adverts shows a young woman being breathalysed driving home the morning after a night out to highlight that people can still find themselves over the legal drink drive limit the following day. Research indicates young people are confused by how much they can legally drink before driving. The legal limit in the UK is 80 milligrammes of alcohol in 100 millilitres of blood, but there is no fail-safe guide as to how this equates to the amount you can safely drink. The amount and type of alcoholic drink, and your weight, sex, age and metabolism will all play their part. The only way to be really sure you are not impairing your driving ability is to not drink any alcohol if you are going to drive.

Councillor Brian Wilcox, Herefordshire Council's Cabinet Member for Highways and Transportation said, 'If you are going out over Christmas and the New Year why not leave your car at home and use public transport? Alternatively, designate a non drinking driver; someone who you know will get you home safely. It is OK to say 'No' if you think someone is under the influence of drugs or alcohol and wants to drive. Don't turn a happy, festive occasion into a nightmare.'

Sergeant John Roberts, from West Mercia Constabulary said, 'Cracking down on those who take drink or drugs and then drive is a year round commitment for West Mercia Constabulary. The Christmas and New Year period can present an opportunity where people may be tempted to drive whilst impaired, this is an irresponsible and antisocial practice which leads to devastating consequences for them, their family, friends and other road users. The message is very simple - if you are drinking at an event or with friends this Christmas don't drive and if you are driving then don't drink. Taking illicit drugs is against the law in any case but if you combine it with driving you become a crash waiting for somewhere to happen. It is simply not worth the risk.'

Alan Haley, Group Manager, Hereford & Worcester Fire and Rescue Service said, 'Fire-fighters know from first hand experience the trauma involved when a needless road traffic collision occurs. The Fire and Rescue Service now attend around twice as many road incidents as domestic house fires. Unfortunately individuals who are rescued from vehicles alive can suffer long-term scars and/or disabilities for life. We support this campaign and hope people take on board the message in the run up to Christmas.'


If you have a local news item or story you can submit it here
or call Alan or Tina on 01989 763217

There is no charge for publishing NEWS items - a small discretionary charge may be made to cover travel expenses for photographic coverage of events

What's On Events - see page for details

Wyenot News, 1, Hillview Road, Ross-on-Wye, Herefordshire. HR9 7EY

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