News Archive

Community singing group starting up

So many people came to sing carols in the car park of The Ferryboat before Christmas, enjoying themselves and creating a great sense of community, that several people suggested starting up a Whitchurch community choir.  A name for it, ‘SINGWOT’, has been proposed. 

Geraldine Witcher and Clare Donahue would now like to hear from all those who would like to join in.  See the attached flyer

Geraldine says: “We would meet once a month, hopefully in the Old Stables, in an informal and enjoyable way, to sing well loved songs, and learn some new ones. There will be no requirements such as reading music or even holding a tune alone, because the aim is to have fun and enjoy singing together. So far we have a pianist, and about seven people have already shown interest. But we would like to know from people who want to join whether they have a preferred day, or time?  Please could you contact us and let us know what you think about SINGWOT.” 

You can get in touch with the organisers on 0776 646 3132 (Geraldine) or by email (Clare).

Date/Time : Monday, 15th January 2018 18:35

Whitchurch resident wins Academy Award (UPDATED)

Jerry Huxtable of Swanston Field, Whitchurch, will be travelling with his wife Denise to Beverly Hills, Hollywood, next month to receive an Academy Award following an announcement last week by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

Jerry is one of five people jointly cited among the Technical Achievement Awards for their contributions to the design and development of the Nuke compositing system. This system has become the most popular visual effects toolkit in the film industry.

Having graduated in physics at York University, Jerry, now 56, went directly into computing and now works with The Foundry in London as a senior software engineer.  He explains that the Nuke system, which he and his fellow award-winning colleagues developed, is a sort of PhotoShop for film-makers: “It's basically the process of taking all the elements of a shot - the sky, landscapes, building, actors shot against green screens, computer-generated characters and objects, smoke, effects and so on - which were all taken at different times, at different locations, with different lighting, or never actually existed in real life, and putting them together to make it look like they were all shot by the same camera at the same time. This is complicated by the fact that everything is moving and has to follow the camera and remain consistent from frame to frame.”

The Huxtables arrived in Whitchurch 18 years ago.  Denise says that she is really delighted with the news and that their children Tom 23, Jennifer 19 and Lia 15 are very proud of their Dad.


Postscript: James Burton, reporter for the Henley Standard, read the above news item, contacted Jerry and wrote a comprehensive article, which can be seen here.


Date/Time : Saturday, 13th January 2018 18:30

Proposal for new house in High Street

At a meeting this week, the parish council discussed an application to build a three-bedroom house in the garden of Ash Court on the east side of the High Street, in the heart of the Conservation Area.  

Details of the proposed new house, and of a new vehicle entrance through the brick-and-flint perimeter wall for access to the existing house, can be seen on the SODC planning website here

Parish councillors resolved to submit an objection to SODC, regarding the development as unacceptable on several grounds. 

Also discussed was an application to build a two-storey garage, office and games room in the garden of Prospect House, on the corner of the High Street and Eastfield Lane, after demolishing an existing garage.  Planning details are here.  The site is within the Conservation Area.  The parish council also objected to this proposal. 

Both these applications are currently out to consultation.  Any comments must be received by SODC before 31st January. 

Hardwick ‘Veg Shed’ to expand 

At the December meeting of the parish council, Iain Tolhurst described his pre-application to SODC for enlargement of the Vegetable Shed near the entrance gates to Hardwick House.  The new shed would be twice the size of the present one, with separate road entrance and exit and parking for up to 15 cars.  For more information, see the December minutes on the Parish Council page.

Date/Time : Wednesday, 10th January 2018 16:51

The beech hedge that got away

Many years ago a line of beech saplings was planted to create a hedge at the southern edge of what is now the village green, on the left hand side of the road to the school.  But the plants were not given a regular trimming back and so grew into trees.  How to manage them now is a question that has been given much thought, as Gill Goodwin of WoTHabs explains: 

During February this year the beech trees lining the southern edge of the Village Green will  be cut to hedge height, with the exception of one large mature beech in that line.   This decision by the Parish Council was made after consultation with local environmental group WoTHABS, who in turn had consulted Oxfordshire's Forestry Officer.  In addition, the large maple tree just inside the boundary will be felled.   These works will allow the two adjacent mature lime trees and a smaller Indian horse chestnut the space they need in order to avoid the current serious overcrowding.   Originally the line of over 60 beeches was planted as a hedge and this work will get it back to a height which can be easily maintained. It is also hoped it will become a denser corridor for local wildlife as the twiggy bits produce new sideways and upward growth. The work will be undertaken during the school's half-term holiday to minimise any inconvenience. 

The height of the trees can be seen in this photo.

Date/Time : Sunday, 7th January 2018 14:36

Go Active Gold comes to Whitchurch on 7th February

South Oxfordshire and Vale of White Horse District Councils have been awarded £227,000 by Sport England towards a three year fitness project for the over-60s called GO ACTIVE GOLD.  The project comes to Whitchurch in the form of an initial taster event in the village hall on Wednesday 7th February, 10 am to 12 noon. 

The aim is to encourage more active lifestyles among older people by setting up some local physical activities catering for all abilities.  The project is fully explained in this leaflet.  Activities mentioned include Table Tennis, Golf, Yoga, Tai Chi, Senior Circuits, Keep Fit Classes, Nordic Walking and Dancing. 

All over-60s, and anyone who would like to get involved in helping to organise activities within the programme, are invited to come along to the taster event.  There is a flyer attached to the entry in What’s On.

Date/Time : Thursday, 4th January 2018 14:04