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From Jo Simson - 26th February

Swangleys Lane Solar Farm:
The proposed solar farm at Swangley's Farm has been “called in” by the Secretary of State for the Dept. for Communities and Local Government following a direct request by Stephen McPartland MP, as well as recommendation from the NHDC planning officer.  A Public Inquiry is now awaited.

Pram Service:
Don’t bring your broken prams, but bring your babies and toddlers to the Pram Service in St. Martin’s Parish Centre tomorrow Friday February 27 at 2.30pm. The thirty-minute service encompasses song, craft and worship. All welcome.

Let’s Get Messy:
All families are welcome, too, to Messy Church this Sunday March 1, in St. Martin’s Parish Centre and Church. As there is no Messy Church in April, this month’s theme is Easter. Families are welcome to explore it in messy craft activities, talk and song, before sharing a cooked meal together. 50p a head to cover costs.

Knebworth Community Chorus Open Evening:
Calling all local singers. Bring your enthusiasm along to Knebworth Community Chorus’s Open Evening at 8pm next Wednesday March 4 in Trinity Church, Park Lane. Come along, enjoy a glass of wine, meet the Chorus, find out what they do and see it it’s for you. Contact Derek or Jenny Harrison on 01438 817992 in advance to let them know you are coming.

Lady Connie and the Suffragettes Update:
I mentioned last week that this new play about our local Suffragette is to be stages at Knebworth Barns on International Women’s Day, Sunday March 8. I have now discovered that there are in fact two performances - at 3pm and 7pm. Tickets, £8, from Hilary Spiers on 01438 350217 or johnhilary1@virginmedia.com.

Knebworth Gardening Club Pre Spring Show Social Evening:
This is the one that didn’t happen on February 20. I can now confirm that it IS taking place on Friday March 13, in St. Martin’s Parish Centre, at 7.30 for 8pm. All welcome to come along and find out what the Club is all about.

Jo Simson

From Jo Simson - 19th February

Busy Village, Busy People:
A quick reminder that every day this week-end has an opportunity for you. Tomorrow, Friday February 20, there’s a Fun two hours at Expressions the Hairdressers in Station Approach from 1-3pm. They’re raising money for Cancer Research with cocktails, nibbles, raffle and leg-waxing (ouch). Saturday February 21 is the KFC Coffee morning from 10am-12noon in the Parish Centre. On Sunday February 22 the 10am Service at St. Martin’s and 4pm Evensong up at St. Mary’s in Old Knebworth will both feature songs/hymns chosen by members of the congregations and others. So come along and sing your hearts out.

Farmers’ Market and Craft Fair:
February zips by, so don’t be caught out. Next Sunday is the first Sunday in March. This means that the last Sunday of this month is this Sunday February 22. So it’s time for the Farmers’ Market and Craft Fair in Woolmer Green Village Hall, Hall Lane, off Bridge Lane. Coming for coffee?

Frugal Lunch:
By the time you read this you should have feasted on your pancakes and be prepared for some self-denial in Lent. The Christian Aid Frugal Lunch is an ideal opportunity for that. That’s also this Sunday, February February 22 in St. Thomas More Church Hall, London Road. Lunch is at 12noon for 12.30pm. If you haven’t booked in advance turn up on the door and give everyone a chance to eat more frugally.

Walking Close to Home:
Knebworth Walking Group’s next outing next Tuesday February 24 is closer to home than usual. It’s centred on the Lytton Arms up in Old Knebworth. If you need a lift to get started, meet at the Village Hall Car Park in Park Lane at 10am.

Pram Service:
I advertised the new Pram Service in St. Martin’s Parish Centre last week – but it’s no time at all till the next one. The fortnightly Service is on alternate Fridays during Term-time, so the next will be next Friday February 27 at 2.30pm. Ideal for mums/carers with tiny tots who find it hard to get out on a Sunday morning, or have children to collect from school. All more than welcome.

Lady Connie and the Suffragettes:
Lady Constance Bulwer-Lytton was a Suffragette, imprisoned several times for the cause. A new play about her by Ros Connelly will be premiered doubly appropriately. It’s at Knebworth Barns, right next to her family home, Knebworth House, and it’s on International Women’s Day, Sunday March 8 at 7pm. Tickets, £8, from Hilary Spiers on 01438 350217 or johnhilary1@virginmedia.com.

Jo Simson

From Jo Simson - 12th February

Pram Service:
A new venture starts tomorrow Friday February 13 at 2.30pm in St. Martin’s Parish Centre. The half-hour Pram Service will be repeated fortnightly and all tiny tots and their parents/carers are more than welcome. Led by Mark Clifford, Families and Children Ministry worker, the service features prayer, song, craft and a Bible Story.

Cancer Research Fun:
Last week I featured something which is NOT happening on Friday February 20. Something which is definitely happening is that Martin, one of the hairdressers at Expressions in Station Approach, is getting his legs waxed. That may not sound like a ‘fun’ experience but it’s all in a good cause. Expressions is holding a ‘Fun Day’ from 1-3pm in aid of Cancer Research and there will also be a raffle, cocktails and nibbles.

Garden House Hospice Raffle:
Another local business which is supporting charity is Barclays Bank. The Knebworth Branch is asking for donations for the auction or raffle at the Annual Garden House Hospice Ball in March. Drop them in to the branch or email joanne.regan@barclays.com  or call 07585 960827

Coming for coffee?
Unlimited refills of tea and coffee are available, as well as home-made cake at the monthly KFC Coffee morning next Saturday February 21. All more than welcome from 10am-12noon in St. Martin’s Parish Centre in the heart of the village.

Frugal Lunch:
In stark contrast, the Christian Aid Committee invite us to mark the start of Lent with a fundraising Frugal Lunch on Sunday February 22 in St. Thomas More Church Hall going out of the village on London Road. Lunch is at 12noon for 12.30pm and consists of soup, accompanied by small amounts of bread and cheese.  The cost is £3 adults, £2 senior citizens and under-12s, under-5s free, or a family ticket for £5. You can buy in advance from Yvonne Denning on 01438 815089. Or if you turn up on the day, everyone gets to eat more frugally. All proceeds to Christian Aid.

Songs of Praise:
Feb 20-22 is an extraordinarily busy week-end in Knebworh my home village. The 10am Service in St. Martin’s and 4pm Evensong in St. Mary’s will feature songs/hymns chosen chiefly by yourselves. The deadline for getting your choices in is this Sunday February 15. You’ll find a box to put them at the back of St. Martin’s Church in the heart of the village.

Quizzically speaking:
Have you booked your tickets  yet for KATS (Knebworth Amateur Theatrical Society) Fun’d’raising Quiz Night on February 28? A fish’n’chips supper and licensed bar are on offer for your ticket price of £9.50. The quiz is in St. Martin’s Parish Centre and you can book your tickets from Jo Simson on 01438 814166, jo.simson@ntlworld.com.

Jo Simson

From Jo Simson - 5th February

Local Plan Consultation Response:
The deadline for responding to NHDC’s consultation is tomorrow Friday February 6. The plan includes proposals for over 400 houses and a school on two Green Belt sites in Knebworth. Make your comments at http://www.north-herts.gov.uk/localplan. If you would like some help in forming them, CPRE (Campaign to Protect Rural England) Hertfordshire has published its own districtwide response to the plan on its website www.cpreherts.org.uk. You’ll also find an action point checklist for responding to Local Plan consultations on the same website.

Building bridges in Tanzania:
I mentioned last week that Liz Stringer has sold her Village Dental Practice to Dr. Shachin Shah. She may be winding down her dental activities in Knebworth, but Liz is keeping up her trips to Tanzania to give dental training and treatment with the charity Bridge2Aid. Liz sets off this Sunday February 8 with Practie Nurse Su Mills. You can follow her progress at http://www.parascosa.com/Tanzania.htm. Meanwhile it’s business as usual building dental bridges etc. at the Village Dental Practice.

Get fit, stay fit:
If you’re New Year’s resolution to get fit is flagging, here are a couple of opportunities to keep you going. The Knebworth Walking Group’s next outing is next Tuesday February 10. They meet at 10am at the Village Hall Car Park to arrange car shares. Tuesday’s walk will be centred on the Rising Sun Pub at Halls Green and finishes with a pub lunch, so watch the calories. If you want to up the pace, there’s a Fun Run for the British Heart Foundation up at Knebworth Park on Sunday February 15. This is the tenth anniversary of BHF Fun Runs (an oxymoron if ever I heard one) at Knebworth Park. You can choose a 5k or 10k run and the cost is £12 adult, £6 child. To register visit the British Heart Foundation website.

Pram Service:
Not an opportunity to get your pram fixed, but an opportunity for craft, prayer, song and get-together for the very small and their carers. This is a new venture, fortnightly in St. Martin’s Parish Centre and the first one is next Friday February 13 at 2.30pm. The Service lasts for half an hour. All welcome.

Knebworth Gardening Club Pre Spring Show Evening:
One thing which is NOT happening is the Knebworth and District Gardening Club Pre Spring Show evening. This is advertised in the February edition of the Parish New as being on Friday February 20, but has been re-arranged for March. Watch this space for more details.

Jo Simson

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