6.30 start for

Carols by


The Clayhidon tradition of carols by candlelight, which the Women’s Institute used to organise every year in the parish hall, is to be revived this year on Friday 16 December.
Please note that it starts at 6.30, not 7.30 as stated on some posters and in the Pump. This is to make it easier for children to attend.
Everyone is welcome to sing along to Brenda Persey's accompaniment, with mulled wine, mince pies and handbells. Entry is free.

Parish needs more affordable homes

Another 26 affordable homes will be needed in Clayhidon and Hemyock within the next five years by people who cannot afford to buy or rent on the open market.
A further 18 “open market” homes will be needed for people who can afford it, according to a study by Devon Communities Together.
>Read more.

Litter lout

When someone kept dumping rubbish at the layby on Clayhidon's riverside road someone else kindly placed a dustbin for their convenience. First the lid was stolen and then the bin itself, but not before the thief had emptied the contents onto the roadside.

Lots of wildlife and countryside events on the Blackdown Hills AONB website

Other local events listings

Plans submitted for hall

Clayhidon Parish Hall committee and the parish council have applied to Mid Devon District Council for permission to build an extension to the hall and create an overflow car park.
Architect Philip Palfrey, of Ottery St Mary, has drawn up plans for a well insulated add-on to the end of the former Victorian school building behind the stage.
It would house new toilets, a meeting room that would double as a changing room for performers plus a small upstairs room for a parish archive.
The existing toilets would be converted into a storage area for tables and chairs.  >Read more.

Paper lantern wonderland

This spectacular paper train wowed the hundreds of people who turned out to watch the Hemyock Parade of Lights on 3 December. There many fine lantern designs, including a full-size cow.
Picture by Yvonne Roth.

Alas, they are easy winners

Alas Smith and Saunders were the runaway winners of this year's Clayhidon Quiz at the Parish Hall on 3 December. Bill and Viv Smith and Louise and Lee Saunders are pictured with quiz master Peter Walter, who devised another eclectic and entertaining  mix of themed questions. The winners finished seven points clear of their nearest rivals, the Tipton Terriers who in turn narrowly beat the Parish Council into third place. Eleven teams took part.  The event, which included a ploughman's supper, made a profit of around £350 for hall funds.

Old school benches for sale

Two 10ft long pine benches from the old Clayhidon Victorian school room (now the Parish Hall) have been put up for sale on eBay. They were found under the stage during a clear-out and the committee decided they were too dilapidated to keep. Hall chairman  Gareth Weekes described them as "very tatty".
"They have woodworm (we think it's long dead, but not certain) and there have been badly botched repairs. We hope someone will think they are worth restoring. Any money raised from this sale goes to hall funds."
If you would like to bid for the benches you can find them on this link.

Baby Tom steals the show as

Casey wins regional award 

Adbe Creative

A tiny Clayhidon stationery design business, Casey Blackmore’s Oyster & Pearl, is through to the national final of the Wedding Industry Awards for the second year running.
Casey took her five-month-old baby Thomas to the regional award ceremony in Bristol as she is still feeding. “He absolutely stole the show,” she said afterwards
>Read more

Four inches of rain in 48 hours
The Met Office reported that four inches of rain fell on Dunkeswell aerodrome on 20 and 21 November, and in Clayhidon it felt more like four feet. Lanes turned into raging torrents and for a few hours many were impassable to ordinary cars. The Culm did its annual impression of the Thames and then as quickly as the flood came up it subsided again. Picture by Nicola Bendle. >More pictures.

Culm's white claws face extinction
The River Culm’s native white clawed crayfish is facing extinction and a campaign has been launched to save it.
“This charismatic species could become extinct here within only a few years because of the multiple threats of falling water quality, habitat change and the arrival in Devon of an invasive alien crayfish species,” the Blackdown Hills AONB has warned.
>Read more.  >Parish Council minutes. 

Improvements planned for parish hall
Big improvements are planned for Clayhidon Parish Hall. An architect has drawn up plans for well insulated extension behind the stage, to include new toilets, a small meeting room that would double as a changing room for performers plus a room for a parish archive.
The existing toilets would be converted into a storage area for tables and chairs. 
The hall committee, through the parish council, will shortly submit a planning application, and if successful will then seek funds for the extension and a general enhancement of the building.
At the same time they hope to end parking problems at the hall, thanks to Russell Bendle, who has generously offered to donate a strip of his field beside the lane below the hall for use as an overflow parking space for about a dozen cars. This change will also need planning permission.

Identifying the
unknown soldiers of WW1
Efforts to identify the remains of two soldiers killed in the First World War were the subject of a talk on 17 November to Clayhidon History Group. The men. from the Somerset Light Infantry, fell at Ypres nearly a century ago.
The speaker was Brendon Moorhouse,  a Bristol based barrister, author of a book about a Kitchener battalion at war, ‘Forged by Fire, the 7th Somersets in WW1’, which looks at the men and the changing battle tactics they used.
His talk was entitled 'Identifying the Unknown Soldiers: A perspective from 100 years'.

Gigaclear rumour quashed

A rumour that Gigaclear had run out of funding for its project to bring ultra-fast broadband cable to Clayhidon and neighbouring parishes has been flatly denied by a director.
The rumour was mentioned at the Parish Council’s planning meeting on 14 November, but afterwards council member Sue Hay called Joe Frost, Gigaclear’s business development director.

Her assured her that there is no issue with funding the current project, which is starting with Upottery, Rawridge and Yarcombe , and notices are in for work to begin in January.

Gigaclear says it has reached 73 per cent of the orders it needs before it will commit to laying an underground network of fibre optic cable. in the Clayhidon and Ford Street area.
It has signed up 116 households and businesses but needs 160, which it is apparently now confident of reaching.
Upottery, Rawridge and Yarcombe have already placed sufficient orders and the first properties are expected to be connected to the all fibre network in January, making them Devon's first Gigabit Villages. >Read more.

Bollhayes attracts international press

This year’s Bollhayes Cider pressing was an international affair, when Alex Hill was helped by friends from Scotland, Norway, Germany and nearer home. They picked tons of apples, bagged them, crushed and pressed them, as they enjoyed a working holiday in Clayhidon. 

>More pictures. 

Jamie revives old

Blackmore tradition

Jamie Blackmore has revived a long family tradition by becoming the fourth generation of Blackmore in 50 years to serve on the council. His great grandfather John and his grandfather Tom were both chairmen and his uncle Richard was also a member for a few years. 

Local GPs rated 'outstanding'The Blackdown GP Practice in Hemyock has been given an overall rating of "Outstanding" by the Care Quality Commission after an inspection and a survey of patients.

In answer to the questions "are services safe and effective?" the CQC recorded a verdict of "Good". The three other questions the commission asked, whether services were caring, well led and responsive to people's needs were all answered with the mark of "Outstanding".
The inspection was carried out in June, and 27 patients took part in a survey. >Read the full report.    

Save a life - restart a heart
You could learn how to restart a heart and save a life by joining a free two-hour defibrillator training session in Hemyock.
Defibrillators – which send an electric shock to the heart to stop an extremely rapid, irregular heartbeat, and restore the normal heart rhythm – are to be installed soon by Clayhidon Parish Council outside the Half Moon Inn and Rosemary Lane Chapel.
As part of a deal with three local parishes the SW Ambulance Trust will provide one training session a year. The first is at Hemyock Parish Hall, EX15 3QW, between 7 and 9pm on Wednesday 30 November. All are welcome.

Bluegrass maestros
The Thunderbridge Bluegrass Band found a highly appreciative audience in Clayhidon Parish Hall for their 14 October gig. It was their second visit to the hall in eight months and over 60 people turned up to hear their unique blend of Appalachian sounds and English westcountry words. Four fine musicians, four closely blending voices and 90 minutes of top class entertainment featuring their new album, Blue.

Cowboy serenade
Harvest Festival was a major community event this year, with an almost-full St Andrew’s Church service followed by a jam-packed Parish Hall for the harvest supper. The evening included a serenading cowboy from Bolham and a song about Russian rioters in Clayhidon. >Read more
  Out of puff
This wonderful old traction engine got a little breathless as she puffed up Rosemary Lane on 1 October, as we all do on that hill when we reach a certain age. "They appeared to have run out of steam half way up the hill and had to restart," said Patricia Lowe, who took the picture "Everyone came out to look as it was quite noisy. Very entertaining for us!"


Agenda for 12 December parish council meeting
>Click here

Coffee morning
Clayhidon Friends raised £171 for Macmillan with a coffee morning. >Read more.

Boardwalk saves walkers from deep bog

Walkers can cross a deep bog in Clayhidon now that a boardwalk has been 'floated' across the mire by the parish council.
>More details and pictures.

At last, parish has a lengthsman to keep the drains clear

Clayhidon has a parish lengthsman again after many years without anyone to carry out minor maintenance tasks on our roads, drains and ditches.
The parish council has appointed Chris Houghton, of Rosemary Lane, who will be called out when needed.
Please report any problems with ditches and drains to the parish clerk, Donna Evans, on 680968.
Chris has just completed a highways training course.  He will be clearing drainage areas, trimming hedges to gain access to drainage and other outlets, clearing debris and keeping signs maintained. >Parish Council minutes.  

Fallen heroes remembered
Clayhidon's fallen heroes in two world wars were remembered at a service at St. Andrew's Church on 13 November, followed by a minute's silence outside..
>More pictures 

Ten out of ten
for Ninebarrow
The brilliant Dorset folk duo Ninebarrow provided a great evening's entertainment for a near-capacity audience at Clayhidon Parish Hall with a variety of the traditional and the modern. It was a financial success for the hall, too.

30 November deadline for broadband vouchers scheme
The CDS Broadband Voucher Scheme will close to new applications on 30 November.
The scheme, which provides anyone with a broadband speed of less than 2 Mbps with a voucher for £500 towards the cost of a new broadband connection, has received in excess of 3,900 applications.
Of these over 2,700 have been approved and over 300 installations have already been completed. 18 suppliers have joined the scheme and are offering solutions such as 4G, fixed wireless and satellite to bring residents at least 10Mbps and in many cases much faster speeds.
>Read more.

What do you think of local plans for health care?
Changes are being planned for this part of Devon to the way care and support is provided in people’s homes and in the community. NHS managers are thinking about where community hospital inpatient beds should be located. 
The aim is to prevent unnecessary hospital admissions and support a faster return home.
The NHS wants to know what local people think about these issues. A consultation document is available on the Clinical Commissioning Group’s website here. Responses can be completed online here.

Who am I?
Can you guess who this strange looking resident of Clayhidon is (or rather was)? For the answer Click here.

Council OK with boilers plan
A planning application to install three biomass boilers to heat the poultry units at Bolham House Farm was supported by Clayhidon Parish Council on Monday 10 October.

Have you got news?
If you have news of a Clayhidon event and would like to use this website to publicise it, or if you have any local information or pictures worth sharing, email websiteclayhidon@gmail.com   or call Gareth or Alison on 681093.

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