The Horndean Parish Community Plan display continues to be shown around the parish. If you have missed it so far, why not pop along to Jubilee Hall, Catherington Lane, PO8 9SU next Monday 24th October between 5.30 and 7.00 pm when it can be viewed prior to the monthly parish council meeting. Members of the community-led team will be on hand to answer your questions.
Another date for your diary: On Friday 18th November, 7.00 – 9.00 pm at Merchistoun Hall, there will be a public meeting addressing the question Localism . . . What does it mean for us all? The keynote speaker will be Meon Valley MP, George Hollingbery.
Two websites worth visiting:
- www.fixmystreet.com is an excellent website for reporting, viewing, or discussing local problems like graffiti, fly-tipping, potholes, broken paving slabs, or street lighting. I have used it several times to report fly-tipping (not just in East Hampshire) and, in my experience, it gets results.
- www.crimereports.co.uk - self-explanatory – type in your postcode.
In the meantime, if you have any queries about the parish plan, do get in touch.
Secretary to Horndean Parish Community Plan Group
023 9259 8984
P.S. To subscribe directly to Horndean Parish Community Plan News please, send a blank email to secretary AT horndeancommunityplan.org DOT uk with ‘subscribe’ in the subject line. You can unsubscribe at any time.
With the open dress rehearsal to the Trustees on the Friday night Merchistoun Youth Arts’ Footlights were given a taster of the impending opening night nerves! A Tomb with a view by Norman Robbins was deemed a great success of short-sighted Romans, family solicitors, extrinsic scientists and dodgy dealings! Footlights entertained a full house on the opening Saturday night with the tales of the tomb family’s missing millions! And an equally as entertained audience on the Sunday evening with the story of their late father’s will reading.
Callan Riches gave a sterling performance as Peregrine Potter who as if by magic later after the car had conveniently ended up in the Tomb’s family lake re appeared looking suspiciously like a certain other Mr Potter! That was once he was allowed to get dressed after one of the Tomb sister’s Monica played by Beck Davey finally let him! The mad scientist and head of the Tomb household Lucien played by Danny Burke showed the true neurotic scientist who felt the best way to deal with issues was to write to the Prime minister! Poor old Lucien lost his head literally! Of course not forgetting Agatha Hammond the trustworthy house keeper played by Jen Morris who was convinced the old man was not dead and was playing nasty games! Unfortunately met her unexpected end with a meat axe!
Doug Correa played Marcus Tomb who was convinced he was Ceaser and spent most of the evening dressed in a toga whilst Nurse Franklin played by Kris Woodthorpe tried to sway the visitors to the mansion that he was not mad merely disturbed! Vicky Legge as Emily Tomb the comical bitchy sister excelled with on stage banter with the rest of the Tomb clan! Dora Tomb played by Hannah Gorman secretly weaving her magic with her ‘home-made’ wine that had seen off many a visitor ended up dead too! Then of course not to forget Mr Penworthy the family solicitor played by Tom Robson who after telling the Tomb’s of their ‘mis’ fortune was indeed too murdered, obviously he played his part far too well!
The twist to the plot relieved that in fact the mysterious Miss Ash aka Freda Mountjoy played by Alice Robson was not in fact the famously novelist the Tomb family thought she was! Her very convincing assistant Peregrine Potter was in fact the novelist but having been cleverly worked out by the evil Nurse Franklin who herself ended up being killed after admitting to murdering the others rounded off an excellent weekend of theatre!
Many thanks for Oliver Saunders at Horndean Parish Council for this write-up covering the status of Merchistoun Hall Grounds,
Merchistoun Hall is an important place for local people in Horndean and the surrounding area, providing premises where community groups can meet and where private functions such as weddings can take place. It is blessed with having very attractive grounds with lawns and large important trees within it and therefore also provides a parkland environment for people to enjoy all year round. Children’s play equipment is also present here and this is owned and managed by Horndean Parish Council.
In the summer of 2010 Horndean Parish Council utilised the assistance of a large group of local youth workers in order to improve the grounds, ensuring they were more accessible, generally tidier and also ecologically enhanced. The main focus of this work was to install proper paths so that people could walk around the grounds more safely and with more direction. The paths were constructed using good quality materials but were of basic design so as to keep costs to a reasonable level and to retain a wild feel to the area. The paths now ensure that people are encouraged to adhere to proper routes as they visit the area. This ensures the remaining areas are left undamaged so that wild plants and animals can colonise. The area is now roughly 80% comprised of native species.
As well as these path improvements much work was done to improve the overall appearance of the grounds by removing rubbish, repairing fences and walls and by painting certain items. This has not only meant the area is more pleasant to visit but has also encouraged members of the public to show more respect to the area. This increase in admiration for the area has surely contributed to the reduction in anti-social behaviour that is now seen here and that has in the past plagued Merchistoun Hall.
Many non-native trees and shrubs were also removed from the area therefore improving the land ecologically by allowing room for native plants to colonise. This colonisation by native plants was sped up by the planting of around 50 native trees and shrubs throughout the grounds. As well as this, the hedge along Portsmouth Road was re-stocked with new trees, although this has only had mixed success and so where needed will be lightly re-stocked again this winter. Many of the impressive yet non-native Horse Chestnut trees throughout the grounds were removed in order to minimise the number of foreign trees growing here and also to give those trees that do remain more room to expand their crowns. It is unfortunate that a non-native species of Moth has accidentally been introduced into this country and the larvae of these creatures annually attack Horse Chestnut trees giving their leaves a brown appearance long before autumn actually begins. The effects of the moth are not fatal to a healthy tree but will slow its growth and will give them an ugly appearance towards the end of summer. More native trees are due to be planted within the grounds this winter and they will be supplied through a grant run by the National Tree Council.
More work is still to be done at Merchistoun Hall including re-excavating the pond to prevent it from drying out in summer and providing additional benches throughout the area as well.
In the summer of 2011 the car park was also improved with assistance from Horndean Parish Council. This has also greatly improved the area and has not only alleviated some minor flood issues but has also enabled easier, safer parking and given the area a much smarter appearance as well.
Good luck to Merchistoun Hall and the grounds that it possesses in the future.
Senior Countryside Ranger for Horndean Parish Council
Saturday November 19th 2011, 6.45pm for a 7.30pm start (food orders required by 7.15pm latest)
Entry £3.50 (a fish & chip supper is a £5.00 optional extra) and a bottle of wine for each member of the winning team.
Teams 6 – 8 players (8 max please) BAR! … RAFFLE!…
Plus special rounds based on Horndean itself.
If you didn’t make it to our Open Day this September … here is a brief taster of what we had in store – please click an image to see a larger version.
In case you were wondering – our venue was jam-packed once the doors were open, luckily we had the foresight to take some photographs prior to the start of the event.
The Petersfield Post also attended and in the following week our Open Day was celebrated with a half-page spread.
We will repeat the event in 2012 – we hope to see you there!