Aynho Long Walk 28 May 2015

Ably led by our newly qualified walk leader, Renate, nine of us set out down the Black Path into Butts Close.  we crossed the Charlton Road and the stone stile to follow the path down the slope and over the curve of the hill to Lower Walton Grounds. The route was dry in spite of recent rain.  We passed round the back of the farm buildings, crossed the stream and followed the track through the valley. The path cut through the broad bean crop to the next small bridge and continued on alongside the stream until Charlton village was above us to the right. We took the uphill path to the left and passed through the old stone pits and the field usually populated by long horn cattle, but empty today, and thence into the top end of the village. Once through the village we climbed up to Rainsborough Camp and from there returned along the top of the ridge, overtaken by two horse riders at a canter. At the pavilion we thanked Renate for a lovely walk and enjoyed our drinks and rhubarb crumble.

Northants Neighbourhood Watch Survey. Have Your Say!

Help the National Rural Crime Network protect rural areas – give them your views on policing and crime. Act now to make your voice heard!

In response to concerns from people living and working in rural areas, the National Rural Crime Network is launching the biggest ever survey of rural policing and crime.

In the face of shrinking budgets, it is important for the National Rural Crime Network to better understand your experiences of policing and crime in your area. Have you suffered financial loss, been concerned or worried about safety or feel the focus is generally on urban areas? You can complete this survey anonymously.

Start the survey

The aim is for the National Rural Crime Network to use the results of the survey to improve awareness of crime in rural areas and encourage crime prevention, inform government policy and help ensure funding is not disproportionately lost from rural areas. The results from the survey will inform the police and their partners in their workhelping to ensure the right services and resources are available to rural communities.

They can only do this with your help.

For the 10-15 minutes it will take, your response will make a difference to policing, crime and community safety in rural areas. I appreciate that you may not live in a rural area so apologies if you feel that this survey doesn’t apply to you – but you may still have views about rural crime if for instance you work in a rural area, have family and friends who live there etc. and we would like you to get the chance to have your say.

Act now to make your voice heard!

Start the survey

Catherine Dunn
Campaigns, Events & Database Manager
Neighbourhood & Home Watch Network

In Aynho & In-Business?

Apricot Business Network: Welcome

This will be the first meeting of this new group to enable local businesses to meet and chat in a friendly and relaxed environment. There is no subscription therefore no permanent commitment, with a monthly meeting and only £10.00 for your choice of breakfast why would you not attend?

The format will be as follows,

  • First 20 minutes informal chat and tea or coffee.
  • Then while breakfast is being served and eaten it’s time to tell us about yourself and your business, in a 40 second pitch (low key and informal please)
  • This next 15 minute slot will normally be filled with a 15 minutes (ish) slot by one of us… a great opportunity to pitch your business/skills and raise your profile.
  • The last half an hour is for you to have 3, 10 minute one to ones with your chosen people, this will be explained… do not worry. (make sure you bring at least 3 business cards)All you need to do now is register your wish to attend and your choice of breakfast, full English, full Veggie or continental to lesleyjgrant@aol.com or call on 07793286404.

    Looking forward to seeing you on the 1st. Lesley Grant and Caroline Parkes

Biodiversity Group Bird of the Month: The Pied Wagtail

The pied wagtail is a small, long tailed black and white bird which can be seen dashing about over lawns or car parks in search of food.   During the winter, at dusk, they flock together at warm roost sites like reed beds and sewage works or trees and bushes in city centres.  Warm places are hard to find so they are happy to share especially as there is the added bonus of safety in numbers.  These roost sites also act as an information exchange.  Birds having difficulty finding food simply follow the ones that are in better condition in the morning! They nest from April onwards and the males are very territorial at this time even attacking their own reflections in wing mirrors and hubcaps of parked cars.  The female alone builds the small cup shaped nest out of grass and mosses in ivy, holes in walls, under roofs or even in old nests of larger birds. She then lays 3 – 7 pale grey eggs and incubates them.  After about 14 days the eggs hatch and both birds feed the young who fledge after 13 – 16 days.  At this stage the juveniles are brownish-grey and often tinged with yellow.   Wagtails eat insects but will feed on seeds and even rubbish in the winter.  When catching prey in flight they zig-zag, tumble and circle using their tails as a rudder.  No one is quite sure why they constantly wag their tails but amongst the suggestions are; a way of signalling to others, to flush out insects or as camouflage when hunting next to flowing water and riverside vegetation. Pied wagtails along with their cousins the white wagtail are the most widespread breeding birds in Europe, breeding everywhere from Iceland and arctic Norway south to Andalucía and Sicily.  Such widespread breeding is an indication of this wagtail’s adaptability, for it is just as happy in high mountain valleys as city centres.  Pied wagtails are on the green list of birds not endangered.

Did You Know?

  • Other names for the pied wagtail include Polly washdish, dishwasher, Penny wagtail, water wagtail.
  • The biggest wagtail roosts may have as many as 4,000 birds.
  • Buckingham Palace supports a wagtail roost.
  • On average during the winter daylight hours they eat a small item of prey every 3 – 4 seconds
  • Though the pied wagtails in southern Britain are largely sedentary, northern populations migrate considerable distances.

Many thanks to www.gardenbirdwatching.com for use of Wagtail picture.

Recorded Music Society: May Meeting

ARMS  (Aynho Recorded Music Society)  

Douglas produced a splendid programme comprising Bach’s “Coffee Cantata” and an excerpt from “St.Paul’s Suite” by Holst, these were followed by Mozart’s “Piano Concerto 21” and a selection from “Tristan and Esolde” by Wagner. “The Trombone Sonata No.1” by Loeillet was the next piece played and one could never have imagined how such complicated musical phrasing could be given by a trombone. This was followed by Beethoven’s “9th Symphony” and “Finlandia” by Sibelius, “Ave Maria” by Schubert brought the interval.

The second half a DVD of Lionel Bart’s “Oliver” starred Ron Moody, “Picking a Pocket or Two” and Harry Secombe. Altogether a most entertaining programme.

.                                                                                               Contact:  Bob Mann 810264

Aynho Long Walk 21st May 2015

Fifteen walkers and four dogs appeared this week to enjoy the lovely warm sunshine. We set off down the Portway path towards Souldern, pleased at how dry it was underfoot after the rain earlier in the week. As we approached the kissing gate at the bottom of the first field we were faced with a notice. BULL IN FIELD.  Fortunately, bull, cows, calves, dogs and walkers all seemed unperturbed so we crossed the field somewhat briskly without further worry.  The path took us through the short wooded area, across into Oxfordshire, and up towards Souldern, where we branched off right over a rather narrow stile. Passing down the meadow and up the other side to a narrow path, nicely cleared,  took us out to The far end of Souldern.  The long walk down Wharf Lane to Souldern Wharf brought us to the canal where a goose awaited us on the towpath. The canal was busy with long boats whose crews gave us cheery greetings as they passed. We soon emerged by the Great Western Arms and began the return alongside the railway, under the motorway towards Millers Lane. A dead goat lay in the scrub at the side of the field.  Where did that come from?  The ford was dry. We continued along Millers Lane, out to Station Road, up the hill and through the village to the pavilion. where the rhubarb and custard cake and coffee were very welcome. Almost six and a half miles in slightly over two hours.

Maytime in Aynho 2015

Pictures from this year’s May Time celebrations in The Square, which was a great event attended by many villagers and visitors with the May Queen crowned, dancing around the maypole and plants, food and bric–a-brac stalls.

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Women Only Bike Rides for Aynho & Croughton

Are you interested in getting out and about on your bike with like-minded women?

Breeze is the biggest programme ever to get more women into riding bikes for fun. Our aim is to help thousands of women feel more confident and comfortable about going on a ride.

I am a Breeze Champion which means I have undertaken a training course to lead rides for women. I want to encourage women to get out there and have some fun. Breeze rides are fun, inclusive and for all levels of cyclist.

I am hoping to set up some regular rides in the area so please contact Sadie at brackleybreeze@gmail.com or tweet me @brackleybreeze if you are interested

Evening ride from Croughton to Hinton-in-the-Hedges Wednesday 27th May 7pm – Join Us!

Aynho’s VE Day Celebration

Three Aynho octogenarians answered the call to commemorate the 70th anniversary of VE Day last Saturday 9th May by ringing St Michael’s bells.

Aynho Long Walk 14th May 2015

The weather forecast obviously deterred all but the hardiest of walkers this week as only three strong willed ladies joined me on an enjoyable if rather wet morning’s walk. We set off down the Portway path and continued towards Souldern before branching off to the left up to the B4100. We crossed the road with care and continued up the drive to Upper Aynho Grounds where we diverted from the public footpath to take the drive down to the lakes. I had previously got permission for this thanks to Richard and Jerry Stephenson. On the way down we passed a field of Red Poll cattle with a number of truly endearing calves. A Swan had nested on the island again this year and once more the bridge by the pagoda was shut off to protect the nest.  We stopped to take photos and this alerted the cob who swam round to make sure we did not get too close.  Richard stopped off on his rounds to chat to us and told us that of last year’s five cygnets only one survived. He also explained about the improvements to drainage and the dredging of the next lake.  As we continued in to the Warren Farm woods it became clear that the new drainage system was very effective in dealing with the section of the path that had always been marshy.  We walked on passing through Croughton churchyards and crossing the main road through the village. it was now raining more heavily but crossing to camp farm the wind was behind us so it was not too unpleasant walking. We passed through the camp, walked along the ridge and out through Green Lane arriving at the pavilion just after 12.15. Total distance 6.8 miles. The rain was now really heavy so we were glad of Kay’s hot drinks and delicious cakes.