Recorder's Report 2014

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The Social Club celebrated the New Year with drinks in the Village Hall on 1st January. Over £900 was raised by the Christmas Concert, Quiz and Busstopshop. This money will be used to restore the Church and essential playground repairs.

Sue Griffiths and Sue Williams appeared on BBC local radio after receiving a new village hall piano from the University of Cambridge. It is decorated in cream with burgundy ribbons and rosettes. The old piano will be passed on to someone else in the village after it was originally given as a gift in memory of Stephen Griffiths. Knit and Natter continues to meet. A popular tapas night was held at the Village Hall near the end of the month.

Families from Berden decided to eat together on 6th March. It was a popular event and was a chance to catch up with people and chat to new residents in the village. May’s Meadow currently owned by John Burton was bought for the enjoyment of local residents especially children. However there has been a problem with dog mess so a request was made for dog owners to clear up after their dog! A new audio/visual cabinet made by Berden carpenter, Phil Smith, was made for the village hall.

The annual Good Friday Fish supper took place in St Nicholas Church on the 3rd April. It was a popular and well attended event.

A beautiful Easter Garden was created by Jenny Arnell and some of the children in the village on Easter Saturday. Jenny has also updated the Berden Churchyard map and has done a considerable amount of research on those people buried there.
The annual Spring Litter Pick took place this month and cleared the verges and lanes. The usual unusual finds were found!
The Opening Weekend of the Berden croquet tournament took place on the last weekend of April.
St Georges’ Night was celebrated on the 24th April in the village hall. A group of singers from both Manuden and Berden entertained a large crowd. Sausage and Marsh was served along with Real Ale.
26 couples took part in the 25th Progressive Supper around Berden this month. It was a very successful evening.

Berden resident Jane McConnell was appointed as a Salaried Judge of the First-tier Tribunal by the Lord Chancellor and was assigned to the Health, Education and Social Care Chamber. A VE Day beacon was lit at the Village Hall on 8th May as part of the 70th anniversary celebrations. The Spring Busstopshop opened for business on the 23rd May. Family Night will now be known as Early Bird Friday as this seemed more inclusive for people of all ages and circumstances.

Uttlesford remains the worst area for superfast broadband in the county. Speeds range from 0.5 Mbps to 5 Mbps. Essex Council have promised link up by 2020. A Summer time tea event was run in Roberts Barn Garden on the 21st June. Money was donated to charity.

The annual Berden Car Rally took place on 7th July and was organised by the WI.
The Berden Fete took place on the 11th July. It was a sunny afternoon and was well attended by people across the area. It raised over £10000 for the Church and Village Hall. It was opened by two children; Edie and friend Erin from Edie’s Butterfly Appeal.

Austin Mitchell was baptised in Berden on the 12th July.

Christopher Barker, one of the oldest residents in Berden gave a birthday party on the 30th July in his garden at Harrolds Field. It was well attended and everyone wished him well.

The Order of St Cedd was awarded to Christopher Barker for being a great example of Christian lay ministry and for his work on the parish share and finances across the diocese. The Bishop of Chelmsford, Stephen Cottrell said ‘Over many years-almost a lifetime- Christopher Barker has been a prophetic witness within the church, reminding us and where necessary cajoling us, to give generously and sacrificially’ Sheila Lane edited her last edition of the parish news this month.

The Berden Tennis Tournament took place on 28th September.
A meeting of the Berden Parish Council agreed to send representatives to Chelmsford to discuss the poor state of the roads and footpaths in the area.

Our Harvest supper took place on the first Saturday in October at the Village hall. The meal was cooked by Natalie Trapmore . Quiz and raffle was organised by Mark Trapmore. A popular family occasion! The Autumn Quiz took place on the 9th October in the Village Hall and was the last one hosted and compiled by Dave Barnes. He received a round of applause and many thanks for over 20 years of quiz hosting! A farewell party on the 25th October was given for Clive and Sheila Lane who are leaving the village after over 30 years of service in aid of the village hall, social club and parish news. Afternoon tea was put on and the event was well attended.

The ever popular Bonfire Night took place on the 7th with some excellent fireworks and food served by members of the Social Club.

Parts of Berden were left without water for nearly two days at the beginning of the month because of a burst water pipe in Manuden. Crates of water were left on the green by Affinity Water Company.

A candlelit remembrance service was held at the newly restored war memorial on the 11th November. Thanks was given to John Burton, Kate Hewitt and David Cowler for doing such a good job. A time capsule was placed under the memorial with items from life in 2014 and some notes on the men who were commemorated on the memorial.

The Christmas busstopshop took place on the 5th December along with a stall which was set up by some of the children in the village who are fundraising for a young girl the church is sponsoring in South America. The 50/50 club was launched as well and this will be a monthly raffle which will raise funds for the Friends of Berden Church. This was followed two weeks later by the very popular carol service with the village choir and the children. Carol singing took place on the 18th December and was one of the best attended in many years. Money was raised for the Essex Air Ambulance and drinks were provided by Fergus McMullen at the old vicarage.

We had a cool spring and warm summer this year. Some high winds in the autumn and we finish the year with temperatures of 17C a week before Christmas. Spring bulbs are already coming up.

Mark Trapmore
Berden Local History Recorder