February 2003  Edition of the Linton News    Previous        Next

Articles:-

Going that extra mile, CAMTAD’s ten years in Linton, uncovering a Hidden talent, could you be a web master, sunshine and showers, hide and seek, Exercise, your new year’s resolve, historic Linton, WI are Linked, , walk this way, anyone for tennis, wool and knitters, brain of Linton, Out of school sports club, a problem shared, infants safer, Linton-chernigov: 3324 Miles, A Chance for fair-trade in LintonCare to share, College chosen, help urgently required, Women’s world day of prayer, Bush telegraph, Gardeners' glimpse, Linton country diary, invaluable advice, Brownies waiting list, K-Club winners.
 

Letters:-

Legislation will protect animals, Keep fireworks for public shows, Failure to act condones abuse High street, Security, but are we ready to pay the price,

Going that extra mile        Top

Paul Richardson will trek in aid of the Leprosy Mission
This month an intrepid Linton resident is preparing for something a little more adventurous than the average Sunday afternoon stroll.
Paul Richardson gears up for the trek of his life
IN February, Paul will be undertaking a sponsored trek through the Himalayas to raise money for leprosy sufferers.
While leprosy is often thought of as a disease confined to biblical times, it is still prevalent today and affects millions of people. It is a disease that damages the nerves and is thought to be spread through droplet infection, e.g. by sneezing or coughing. Leprosy is confined to parts of the world where malnutrition and poor living conditions weaken the body’s immune system. Hence 80% of known cases are in the Indian sub-continent. A cure for leprosy was only introduced about 15 years ago, and consists of a 12-month course of a cocktail of drugs. Pharmaceutical companies provide the drugs free of charge, so the cost of administering treatment for each patient is only £15.
As well as the social stigma that accompanies leprosy, failure to receive treatment can lead to disability and blindness caused by nerve damage. This damage results in the inability to feel any injury to the hands, face and feet and also causes paralysis. It is injuries sustained through the loss of feeling that lead to the stereotypical stump-like hands and feet that are associated with leprosy.
The money Paul raises will be given to the Leprosy Mission hospital at Anandaban in Nepal. This hospital alone treats over 1000 leprosy sufferers a year, administering the multi-drug therapy and carrying out reconstructive surgery. All the costs of the trek have been covered, so all of the money raised through sponsorship will go to the hospital.
The trek will last for seven days, and will cover 50 miles over challenging terrain, with steep and lengthy ascents all carried out at altitudes of between 3,000 and 8,500 ft. Not having undertaken such a challenge before, Paul is currently in training, and you will probably see him running the highways and byways of Linton to help ensure that he is able to complete the trek!
Paul’s sponsorship target is £1,500, of which around £800 has already been raised and he will be relying on contributions from individuals and companies to reach his target.
If you would like to contribute or to know more then please contact Paul on % 892074, or e-mail p_b_Richardson@yahoo.co.uk Remember, just £15 will cure someone of leprosy, and radically transform their life for the better. I can’t think of any other way that you could use £15 that could have the same impact! Paul Richardson

CAMTAD’s ten years in Linton        Top

ACCORDING to health statistics approximately half as many people again have poor hearing as those with poor eyesight, yet no one notices. People with hearing problems don’t carry sticks, nor show or wear anything immediately obvious so the problem often goes unnoticed, and hearing impairment tends to be relegated to the end of the line for social and medical care and resources.
Twenty five years ago a senior lip reading teacher from Addenbrooke’s Hospital took it into her head to try to change the scene (around Cambridge at least) and together with colleagues, and the active help of Cambridge Evening News, formed CAMTAD (Cambridge Campaign for Tackling Acquired Deafness) to assist those with hearing disabilities to become aware of the various environmental aids that were available to help them. Things such as doorbells, smoke alarms, television and telephones and many other assets that are taken for granted by those with normal hearing virtually do not exist if you can’t hear them, but there are various devices available (at a price) to help make up the deficiency
CAMTAD was started as an information service in 1978, and developed to include a cleaning and maintenance service of NHS hearing aids and advice and demonstration of typical samples of some of the various ‘environmental’ devices that were on the market at the time.
Ten years ago in March 1993, with the active encouragement of Dr Anderson and his colleagues in Linton, CAMTAD started the first experimental regular monthly sessions based in the Health Centre using local trained volunteers. (All our active workers are selected, trained volunteers and all our services are given free.)
During our first year in Linton we averaged about twelve visitors each monthly session, cleaning and servicing NHS hearing aids, demonstrating the various items of equipment to the curious, offering advice to anyone troubled with their hearing and in 1993 that seemed to be enough to give us a busy morning. Word has since spread and it is an unfortunate fact of modern life that more and more people are developing damaged hearing. Today the numbers of visitors to our clinics are often more than double what they were ten years ago.
The success of the Linton example led to demand from other local areas, and over the years CAMTAD has expanded to set up seventeen other regular monthly sessions around South Cambs, from Littleport in the north to Gamlingay in the west. The most recent is at Cambourne. (A separate Fenland CAMTAD serves North Cambs.)
The Cambridge model has since been copied in other parts of the UK and now there are many, many other CAMTAD’s or CAMTAD type groups doing something very similar.
In Linton we enjoy a very co-operative, friendly relationship with the staff at the Health Centre. We have over 130 local people on our register many of whom come regularly every month or so. Our volunteers can also make home visits by arrangement for those unable to get out.
We are part funded by Cambridgeshire Social Services, and the Local Health Trust, but we depend, and are grateful for generous donation support to make up the rest, mostly spent on expanding and updating our stock of equipment.
Having enjoyed a satisfyingly fruitful ten years in Linton what the next ten years will bring remains to be seen. From present trends a reduction in people needing help with their hearing troubles seems very unlikely.
We are at Linton Health Centre 9am to 12noon the third Wednesday of every month. Just drop in, no appointments, no charges (dates are in the Village Diary in the Linton News). Sandy Burgess, Mary Wrigley and John Cammann (Linton) and Eddie Greatorex (Royston)

uncovering a Hidden talent         Top

YOU may not be aware that each month the members of the Linton News editorial committee scan the previous month’s edition for the most interesting, fun and informative articles for inclusion in the "Article of the Year" competition, the voting for which is held each December, usually at our Christmas Committee Meeting in the pub!
This years winner is Jules Dann for her entertaining article, ‘Six Wheels and a Flapjack’ published in the October edition of the Linton News. In the article Jules recounts the trials and tribulations of her first London to Cambridge bike ride on what turned out to be one of the hottest days of 2002.
The article was in fact the first thing that Jules had ever written for publication and was actually the result of a last minute plea from the editor for extra copy during a month that (quite uncharacteristically) was a little light on copy. Jules’ first venture into journalism proved to be to her taste and she has since written more articles for local publications. Congratulations also go to the runners-up; Anne Parry-Smith,’ More than Jam and Jerusalem’ February, Darryl Nantais ‘Country Diary’ May edition and Joan Smith ‘What do you do all day?’ August. LNT

could you be a web master?        Top

OR perhaps more correctly a web editor. Linton’s website, www.linton.info, needs a new editor to maintain and expand the site which draws together electronic versions of the Linton News, the Linton News archive, an extensive and useful Village Diary, special reports, the first of the sections of a Linton Guide and useful links.
Work is already in hand to add the biggest list to the guide section - organisations and contacts. The present editor, John Keeble, is handing over because of other commitments but will be available for help and guidance as the new editor works into the project. Some skills are necessary: the ability to design pages, write and edit, and prepare and upload text and photographs. The Webmaster, Graham Potter, handles technical matters. Software is available to run on the new editor’s own computer. If you are interested, please contact John Keeble at jkeeble@clara.net (however, please be patient as I will be unable to reply until the end of February!)
John Keeble

sunshine and showers        Top

THE Self Build Solar Team project, which is jointly funded by South Cambs. District Council, Cambridge City Council and the National Energy Foundation, is designed to help local residents (including local trades people) in both the city and South Cambridgeshire to build and install their own solar hot water systems at a cost saving of approx. 50% - a typical system costs £2,500. Various workshops are planned for later in 2003. Please contact Cameron Adams, Strategic Development Officer for South Cambridgeshire on % 443135 (or email: cameron.adams@ scambs.gov.uk) for the latest information available about the scheme. The costs for the self build are: £1400 if you wish to attend as either a builder or buyer (this includes the cost of materials and training) - in both cases you get a solar hot water system comprising 3 solar panels together with a hot water tank plus extras. £50 if you wish to attend as a trainee - although this does not include the solar hot water system, you do receive training plus a comprehensive DIY manual which would enable you to build your system at a later date.
A solar hot water system saves an average household £150 per annum on their electricity bill. It typically provides 80% of hot water needs in the summer and 20% in the winter. Hence you do need a conventional system as a back-up. The solar hot water system is most cost effective and suitable for those systems which include a hot water tank. The system can be used with a Combi boiler but in this case it does require some modification, which is costly.
Cameron Adams

hide and seek        Top

LINTON Camera club met on Sunday 12th January for an away day to Wicken Fen for landscape photographs on a frosty morning. Eight members, including new member Ralph Atkinson, met at Coles Lane at 8am when the temperature was a chilly - 4ºC but the forecast was for early sunshine.
When we arrived conditions were perfect - very cold but the sun was shining and the frost on the trees and marsh plants gave us excellent material. Unfortunately cloud soon appeared but we photographed the windmills on the site and visited the bird reserve lookout tower. Later some of the group travelled to Ely and its waterfront before setting off home for lunch.
The next meeting will be at 11am on Sunday 9th February on the first floor of the Social Centre, when the subject will be "Photography over the winter months - successes and failures". New members are very welcome.
Contact Mike Crofts for further information.
Mike Crofts

Exercise, your new year’s resolve        Top

WE are always busy this time of year at the Sports Centre, and so far there have been a lot of people coming through our doors, trying to shed that over- indulgent Christmas feeling. We are always promoting new activities at the Sports Centre and we have a lot to offer. There are aerobics classes and badminton clubs as well as keep fit, trampolining, basketball, and tennis, all indoor activities, so no excuses in bad weather!
The Basketball Club on Fridays has become very popular. Many children attend the session for 8-12 yr olds at 5-6pm. The adult session that starts at 6pm could always do with the support of some more members. All abilities are welcome; we encourage new starters as well. The only criterion is that you are above 14 yrs of age. We must also take this opportunity to thank Paul Bowden for volunteering his services to coach the Basketball Club free of charge. The growing number of members is directly attributable to him and his enthusiasm for the game. Lucy Howe

historic Linton        Top

ON the 21st January Garth Collard welcomed between 90 and 100 members of the history society and visitors, to his continuation of talks on Linton shops and businesses over the years. Aided by a slide show, we travelled from Bartlow Road to Church Lane, with detailed descriptions of all the historic buildings, their uses over the years, the changes from one type of shop to another and from one public house to another. Changes of names of public houses occurred and as can be seen today, most of them and the shops have disappeared altogether, having been converted into houses, although they can still be recognised by their external facades. Many photographs showed the owners standing outside their premises and businesses were handed down through the family for many years. There were so many buildings to discuss and space does not allow a detailed description here but anyone interested can look forward to Garth’s exhibition of photographs in due course. He would also be glad to hear from anyone who has any recollections of families, businesses etc. in the village to complete his research.
It was so interesting to see Linton High Street in bygone years, with muddy surfaces, horses, bicycles and lots of pedestrians – a quiet and peaceful road!
Clare Neville gave a warm vote of thanks and we look forward to our next meeting on Tuesday 18th February when Linda Ketteridge will tell us about the ‘Hidden Town of Saffron Walden’. All are welcome. Joan Pearman

WI are Linked        Top

THE speaker for the first meeting of the WI this year was Clive Bush, Principal of Linton Village College, who gave a very thought provoking illustrated talk about the College’s link with a junior and secondary school in Boepathutse in South Africa. He gave us background information about conditions in the large township and explained why he felt the link between the two schools was so important for both of them. This has been made possible through a charity, Link Africa, which is based in Cambridge. Clive spoke of the great optimism he had encountered at Boepathutse and the importance with which education is regarded there. He then described what had been achieved over the past four years with help from pupils, teachers and parents at LVC, which included the building of a science lab. In the future it is planned to build two rooms for arts and technology, which it is hoped may be available for adults as well as children. He spoke with great enthusiasm about the link and answered questions after his talk.
The February meeting takes place at the Social Centre at 7.30pm on Tuesday, 4th February. There will be community singing and the results of the quiz on sayings and proverbs. All are welcome.
Anne Parry-Smith

LEGISLATION WILL PROTECT ANIMALS        Top

Dear Editor,
We welcome the request to respond to the article by Kim Simmons of Linton Zoo regarding fireworks, and we totally support her concern for her animals during these demonstrations. Fireworks are terrifying for all animals but when the animals are confined, unable to escape, as they are in zoos, they must be absolutely panic stricken.
Unfortunately it is not only the zoo animals who are affected but also the surrounding wildlife and domestic animals, for example rabbits and guinea-pigs in outside hutches and horses in nearby fields.
The RSPCA carried out a survey of vets in England and Wales last year and found that 4825 animals, both wild and domestic, were treated for firework related injuries or had to be prescribed sedatives because they were so traumatised.
Barry Gardiner MP tabled a Ten Minute Rule bill in Parliament last year calling for tighter legislation on fireworks but unfortunately it failed at its second reading. However, this Bill was supported by many MPs and, most importantly, the DTI had a change of attitude. As from 2003, air bombs and some of the larger maroon-type fireworks will no longer be available for sale to the public.
Maybe we could go one step further and simply have beautiful displays without the explosions.
Pat Griffin and Sue Hughes
RSPCA Auxiliary
Secretaries

KEEP FIREWORKS FOR PUBLIC SHOWS        Top

Dear Editor,
I am contacting you regarding the article in the latest Linton News regarding fireworks by Kim Simmons. The 2002 Linton Fireworks sounded like the village was under attack. At least we humans knew what the noise was: all the animals in or out of the village did not. I know of various campaigns trying to get the sale of fireworks banned to private individuals because of misuse. If fireworks were just sold for organised displays and not sold to private individuals it would mean that at least we animal owners would not have to worry about when to walk dogs, when to get the cat in or worry if other animals can hear the fireworks. I have read of cats, dogs, horses escaping from gardens/fields and running onto roads and being injured or killed .I have also read of a firework being thrown at a guide dog. Needless to say the dog had to be put down.
Simon Hill

FAILURE TO ACT CONDONES ABUSE OF HIGH STREET         Top

Dear Editor,
Following the letter from Val Urwin, Chairman of Linton Parish Council, in the Linton News January 2003, I am writing to request immediate action over the danger that the users of Linton High Street are being exposed to. Cambridgeshire County Council and Linton Parish Council have so far failed to take any action whatsoever over the speed or volume of traffic in the High Street and are now jointly responsible for:
o far more vehicles using the narrow, congested High Street than it can safely accommodate;
o frustrated drivers exploiting the lack of traffic control to speed between gaps in the congestion;
o vehicles regularly driving on the pavement.
As a result pedestrians and minority road users are regularly exposed to extreme hazards in the High Street.
Prior to Christmas I saw a young boy on his bicycle pedalling as hard as he could with a lorry following close behind him and a bus approaching him – with a queue of frustrated drivers behind it. All the drivers failed to wait until the cyclist had safely left a space they could fill and in an uncontrolled and competitive burst of speed they lurched forward. The cyclist – fortunately, but only just – stayed on his bike for long enough to escape a serious accident.
I have regularly seen pedestrians flattened against the walls of buildings which front the High Street to avoid vehicles that are driving on the pavement to get past each other. As you should be aware, a number of people and their belongings (including pushchairs) have been hit by the wing mirrors of the vehicles as they negotiate each other. (I thought driving on the pavement was illegal and I can only assume that Cambridgeshire County Council and Linton Parish Council, by their continued inaction, condone this use of the pavement. Is that correct?)
In my opinion a Hazard Analysis of Linton High Street using the same Health and Safety criteria that are applied to places of work would show that there is imminent risk of serious personal injury to a High Street user. This means – if the High Street were a workplace – a prohibition notice would be issued and it would be shut down immediately until made safe. Doing nothing is not an option for employers.
Waiting for responses from the County Council ‘confirming that items are being considered or are on a list’ or ‘receiving updates from the traffic working party’ (items 1, 2, 3, 5, 6, 7, 8 and additional points of Val Urwin’s letter) is like waiting to see if a gas leak causes an explosion. Likewise not providing these responses as a matter of extreme urgency is only increasing the size of the explosion.
I am not going to make suggestions about what should be done – there are others better placed than me to evaluate the solutions – I just want to know if something is going to be done and when.
Dr A C Elphinstone
This is a version of a letter sent to Cambridgeshire County Council and Linton Parish Council

SECURITY, BUT ARE WE READY TO PAY THE PRICE?        Top

Dear Editor,
One aspect of the scheme [to erect security fencing at Linton Infants’ school] has not to my knowledge been publicised at all, and therefore it may not be common knowledge that the much used route from Church Lane to Camping Close is about to be closed by a fence with double gates that are only opened for special occasions.
This will block a very important pedestrian route through the village, and force people either onto the High Street or through the Churchyard, either of which would be highly undesirable. This restriction will be sorely felt by many people, and would be a bad development which the village should try at all costs to avoid. Far from blocking this route, I believe the Parish Council should be considering its improvement.
Camping Close is a wonderful amenity for the community and an essential part of an excellent system of footpaths and alleys leading to and from all parts of the village. Whilst the Churchyard forms an optional part of this, it is totally inappropriate as the only route from the High Street to Camping Close. Every other person will cut the corner through the gravestones, and then be frustrated that the kissing gate admits neither bicycles nor prams, and I am sure these are problems that the Parochial Church Council could well do without. The existing variety of linked footpaths allows free and safe routes in all directions, and safe routes to school are just as important as security within the school. Well frequented paths near the school are more likely to be respected than tall fences keeping innocent people away.
This is not the first time the school has blocked an access to Camping Close. It should be remembered that the last major extension of the school blocked an access that was definitely a public right of way. People did not object at that time because there was an equally good access over the playground, which has been in continuous use by the public since the 1960s. Any proposal to close that route also will block access to Camping Close from the High Street altogether, and becomes a serious violation of peoples’ rights.
From conversations I have already had with local people, blocking the route would not be popular, though they do understand the need for greater security at the school. No details of this particular fence have ever been published, and possibly this would explain the lack of objection.
I therefore write this letter as a formal request to the school to make this very simple change. I’m only sorry that this point has not been considered before. It is not a detail. It is fundamental.
Henry Bennett

Dear Editor,
Pauline Hill and family would like to thank all who attended Bryan’s funeral and for all the cards of sympathy sent.
Also thanks to the rector Mark Mills-Powell and the church choir.
Mrs P Hill

Dear Editor,
Well done Tower View and thank you to those who donated money on the death of Mr Stan Richardson, who lived at 22 Tower View.
I collected £110, and it will be sent to the British Heart Foundation.
Julia Hilliard

walk this way        Top

Remember the sun? Last year’s walkers enjoyed picture perfect weather
LAST year’s Oxfam Walk was a great success, and plans are already well under way for the 36th event. Walkers can choose to be sponsored to tackle a route of seven, 14 or 21 miles starting from Wimpole Hall, covering an attractive route through the Eversdens, Longstowe, Hatley and Croyden areas. There will be many attractions for all participants in and around the marquee at Wimpole Hall.
There’s also a very specific purpose to the walk. Oxfam helps millions of people in poverty all over the world, such as coffee growers who are facing economic ruin because of falling coffee prices. Oxfam believes that people should have regular and dependable sources of food and income and that helping people improve their livelihoods is crucial to reducing poverty all over the world. Oxfam aims to help people to work themselves out of poverty.
By supporting the 36th Cambridge Oxfam Walk, you can show support for coffee growers and raise vital funds for all of Oxfam’s work in over 80 countries. So please do note the date – Sunday 18th May 2003 – in your diary.
From March onwards, sponsorship forms will be available from a number of sources, including the Oxfam website. For advance information, please contact Clare Wilson or Stephen Green by phone on %563388 or by e-mail at stephenclare@ntlworld.com
Marshals and stewards are crucial for the success of the walk. If you think you will be able to offer your help for two or three hours on the day, please contact Jerry Carr-Brion by phone on % 414954 or by e-mail at jcarrbrion@yahoo.co.uk
Clare Wilson

anyone for tennis?        Top

LINTON has been without a tennis club at the Village College now for a while. Last summer I noticed an increase in the use of the tennis courts, not just by children, but also by adults.
This year I would like to offer a specific daytime slot, a weekend slot and an evening slot when all those interested can turn up and play each other. At these times there will also be coaching available.
There will be Play Tennis days happening on Saturday and Sunday 3rd and 4th May (free tennis at the Sports Centre on those dates) and I will start the sessions after those dates. I would be grateful if anyone interested in helping with the development of this club, or in joining, would call the Sports Centre (890248) so we can start the database of names as soon as possible and get you all playing! Lucy Howe

wanted: wool and knitters        Top

THE Linton group of the Co-workers of Mother Theresa, founded by women of the three village churches in 1980, has met regularly ever since to knit items of clothing and blankets for charities caring for the deprived and homeless in this country and abroad. In addition, enthusiastic knitters living outside Linton and unable to attend meetings have contributed to our efforts in no small way over the years. Unfortunately our membership has declined recently and delivering our gifts to various different locations has proved a problem. It has therefore been agreed, regretfully, that the Linton group of co-workers should be disbanded.
Mother Theresa’s Missionaries of Charity in London have been informed and were sent a donation of £25 for Christmas. Jimmy’s Night Shelter, The Salvation Army and Winter Comfort in Cambridge each received about 20 men’s knitted hats, scarves and gloves etc. for which they have all expressed their warmest gratitude.
Some members of the group prefer to knit squares for blankets which are donated to Mr Fred Binks’ Humanitarian aid for the Ukraine. It is the wish of our group to continue knitting and it has been agreed that this will now be the main outlet for our gifts.
With the closure of the QD store in Cambridge where we bought most of our wool, it is increasingly difficult to find wool at a reasonable price and we would gratefully accept any donations of unwanted wool. We should also be very happy to welcome new knitters!
Joy Button

who is the brain of Linton?        Top

A FIENDISH quiz, with questions "Pertaining to the Body" has raised more than £60 for Linton Granta Playgroup & Toddlers – and would have raised even more if the organiser could have had a pound for every time someone said "This quiz is driving me mad!"
Congratulations to the winner, Enid Bald of Linton. She in fact tied with Ray Daniels of Girton, both scoring 55 out of a possible 59 points, but Enid’s own clever cryptic clue supplied as a tie-breaker tipped the balance: "It may be redundant, but it’s handy at the end". Answers to this and the other quiz questions are available from Anna McMahon (% 892977).
The Linton Granta Playgroup & Toddlers Committee would like to thank all who participated in the quiz, especially Enid who generously donated back her prize money. All the money raised will go towards improving the playgroup garden.
Look out for details of more Linton Granta Playgroup & Toddlers quiz events this year: a pub quiz at the Dog & Duck on March 3rd, and another quiz sheet to wrack your brains over in the summer.
Anna McMahon

OUT of school sports club        Top

THE Sports Centre has been successful in obtaining a grant from the New Opportunities fund to start up an Out of School Club aimed at 11-14 year olds. (younger siblings can be accepted also.) The club will open for the Easter holidays from 7.45am to 6pm, and term time 7.45-9am and 3.45-6pm. The club will offer a variety of activities such as football, tennis, badminton, crafts, board games, computer games and a quiet area for study. Please call %890248 for more details and prices. We are also looking for staff! There are number of opportunities available with flexible working hours.
Call the sports centre on the above number for more details or for an application form.
Lucy Howe

a problem shared        Top

LINTON Area Dyslexia Group warmly welcomes parents and carers to their first meeting of 2003 at 34 The Woodlands, Linton from 7.45 to 9.30pm on Thursday 20th February. Do come and join us for an informal evening.
Contact Mrs M E Clark on 892657 or just turn up. We look forward to seeing you.
Mrs M E Clark

infants safer        Top

LINTON Infants School is pleased to confirm that the planned fencing of the school play area will take place during the half term in the week commencing Monday 17th February 2003. This will greatly enhance all aspects of security and we would like to thank the Governors for all their help in bringing this project to a successful conclusion.
Heather Greenhalgh
(See letters on p3)

LINTON-CHERNIGOV: 3324 MILES        Top

Jean Whitby, Fred Binks and friends beside the van that took them to the Ukraine
RESIDENTS and friends recently gathered at Chalklands community centre to hear accounts from Jean Whitby, Fred Binks and William Gladman of Great Chesterford of their visit by road to Chernigov in the Ukraine in September.
While there they delivered blankets knitted by the co-workers of Mother Theresa to an orphanage which, since the Chernobyl nuclear disaster in 1986, has been home for around 400 children.
Working conditions there are atrocious and equipment is minimal. Our gifts, together with toys, clothing and medicines were greatly appreciated by the doctors, nurses and staff who warmly welcomed their visitors.
Before leaving, Jean had organised a mileage sponsorship, which raised £255 (total mileage 3324 miles). A further £65 was raised on the afternoon of the Chalklands talk by a raffle and sale of Chernobyl booklets written by Violet Slade, who is a big fund raiser for this cause. Copies of the booklets are available from Jean Whitby (requests sent to the Linton News website will be redirected to Jean by the Linton News).
Our sincere thanks to everyone who supported our trip and those who contributed during the Chalklands afternoon. Jean Whitby %893645

A CHANCE FOR FAIR-TRADE IN LINTON        Top

FAIR-TRADE is about fair terms of trade, local sustainability, better prices and decent working conditions, enabling producers to improve their lot and have more control over their lives. By requiring companies to pay above market prices, Fair-trade addresses the injustice of world trade, which traditionally discriminates against the poorest, weakest producers. Fair-trade is not about charity. It is about a better deal for third world producers, because when they are paid a fair price they don’t need charity.
There are various ways of purchasing fairly-traded goods. In many shops, including one local shop, there are products bearing the Fair-trade Mark – tea, coffee, cake, chocolate, bananas, etc. If a product carries the Fair-trade Mark, it guarantees a better deal for workers and producers from poor countries. The Fair-trade Mark is internationally recognised and independently monitored.
The largest independent fair trade organisation in the UK is Traidcraft. Traidcraft goods are largely sold through volunteer Fair Traders or mail order.
From 1.30–3pm on Wednesday 5th February, Traidcraft goods will be on sale for the first time at the Family Resource Centre in the Social Centre. Why not drop in, sample a cup of fairly-traded coffee, learn more about Fairtrade, see what is available and, maybe, make a purchase? On sale will be various food items and stationery. Fancy goods and clothes can be ordered from the catalogue. If it proves popular, this could become a monthly event.
For some time, Traidcraft goods have been on sale in St Mary’s Church after the 8.45am Mass and 10am service, on the second Sunday of each month. This will continue.
Buying fairly traded goods is one way in which we can all help to alleviate world poverty. Let us show that the folks of Linton care about the developing world.
Jean Wheeler

CARE TO SHARE?        Top

THANKS to a grant from Community Champions, even more books on family life are available at the Family Resource Centre. Care For The Family produce a range of books and videos on parenting, marriage and life in general which complement the Parentalk Guides that we already stock.
All of these books are available for lending from the centre on Wednesdays. We are now also able to order books and music from Wesley Owen in Cambridge, so if you are thinking of making an order please do it through us as the commission raised will be re-invested in our lending library. Pick up a catalogue from us at the centre or contact Sarah on % 891952.
Requests to stock particular books on family life will be considered.
Please telephone Tracey Russell on % 894656 for further details.
Tracey Russell

COLLEGE CHOSEN AS SITE FOR SPECIAL SCHOOL        Top

LINTON Village College has been selected to provide the site for a new school in the county. This will be a school for special children most of whom will have severe physical and mental learning difficulties. It will be self-contained but there will be opportunities for those children to share the resources of the College when and where appropriate as well as opportunities for our students to spend some time working and learning with them.
In financial terms, there are considerable gains for the College and these will be used to improve our roadways, car parking and access. The new school will also have some facilities from which the community will benefit and we hope that one of these will be a swimming pool. These are very early days and there is a great deal of detailed design and planning work to be done, but it is the intention of the Local Education Authority that the new school will open in September 2005.
Clive Bush

help urgently required        Top

THE Linton News still urgently requires an advertising manager to join our team. Sadly our previous appeal proved unsuccessful - so we are trying again!
The role is straightforward and involves being the advertising contact for the Linton News and collecting advertising fees. The advertising manager would be required to be mobile and, though not essential, if you can use a computer this would simplify administration matters.
This is a very important role as the Linton News depends on advertising for income. We receive no other finding and no form of financial donation. Currently, committee members are combining the advertising management with their own role but such an important part of Linton News work really needs someone to take full responsibility.
If you would be interested in this very important role within the team or would like to find out about other roles within the Linton News, please contact Gloria Fidler  Hazel Olway.

Women’s world day of prayer        Top

THIS year’s Women’s World Day of Prayer service has been prepared by the women of Lebanon, with the theme, "Holy Spirit, Fill Us".
This international, interdenominational act of worship will take place at 10.30 am on Friday 7th March at the United Reformed Church, Horn Lane and will be led by Lesley Gore of St Mary’s Parish Church.
Our speaker will be Mrs Jan Green of Bury St Edmunds. Coffee will be served after the service. Although this annual World Day of prayer is organised and led by women, men are most welcome to join us.
Joy Button

THE BUSH TELEGRAPH        Top

THE coming year is starting to look very interesting for Linton Village College. The government has just announced sweeping changes in secondary education. Schools will no longer be required to teach the full national curriculum from age 14 onwards, indeed the only compulsory subjects will be English, mathematics and ‘applied’ science.
For some children this provides welcome and overdue opportunities to pursue a less academic programme. For others though, especially in a school like Linton Village College, the full academic range will continue to be needed. We therefore have to look very carefully over the next few months at the opportunities and pitfalls this latest edict presents to us so that all our young people can obtain what they need from their time with us.
Interestingly our own work towards becoming a specialist school in Business and Enterprise will help a great deal in the development of the new approach to 14 to 19 education. Only last week we welcomed 12 senior representatives from our business sponsors to a meeting to discuss how we can work more closely with them to meet their needs and those of our young people.
As I said last month, the funding arrangements for 2003/4 in Cambridgeshire are much better than expected but still fall a long way short of any growth. Unfortunately, even a ‘standstill’ budget for schools can only be achieved by a council tax rise of 12%. This is a hard one for people to swallow when you consider the media coverage highlighting the fact that Cambridgeshire has gained the second highest increase in the country. It all depends on where you start from, of course, and our county was the poorest funded shire in the country and has been for many years. We have a lot of catching up to do and a backlog of problems.
However the College stands to gain from other investment from the county to replace our temporary buildings and increase the number of science laboratories. This will be part of a wide-ranging look at the College as a whole, which will lead to a number of other improvements. So all in all things are looking very positive for 2003 and 2004. As always, I’ll keep you posted.
Clive Bush, Principal

GARDENERS’ GLIMPSE OF ALL-ROUND VISION        Top

WE had heard rumours that Eric Silk’s 3D Show was something special, but his large audience was spellbound at the magnificent images of East Anglian gardens, and those in the front row were prohibited from picking the flowers which jumped out of the pictures so close to them!
Mr Silk is a local man with an international reputation who specialises in the sphere of stereoscopic images. As he told everyone to put on their special glasses those of the right vintage were reminded of the brief period in their youth when cowboys or indians rushed at you from the screen. There was more to amaze when he followed the garden shots with close-up photos inside a bird’s nests of the eggs, the hatching chicks, the feeding of the babies and the fledglings as they ventured out.
That display will be a hard act to follow but this month the well-known Peter Beales will be speaking on Classic Roses.
I must apologise for an error in last month’s report of the list of categories for the July Show’s photo competition. It was agreed at the AGM that the subject "My Garden" should replace the earlier suggestion of "Stained Glass Church Windows". I hope this mistake has not caused any inconvenience.
Gloria Fidler

LINTON COUNTRY DIARY by Darryl Nantais        Top

Illustrated by Maureen Williams
SAT alone at the kitchen table, crunching nuts. Seam against seam in one clenched fist I cracked open the last few delicious Christmas walnuts. One drizzly afternoon forty years ago I sat with friends using a half and a quarter of a walnut shell, bail-twine, scissors and glue to create little model rats, looping their tails together in the centre of the table. This was learned from the local farmhands who claimed knowledge of ritual rat suicide by tying their tails together. I have since understood these to be known as ‘Rat Kings’. Can anyone shed any light on this phenomenon?
I then noticed an old familiar grey squirrel, beech nuts in hand, leaping on frosty boughs in the cemetery. Clever characters, I thought.
Squirrels belong to the Sciuridae family of which there are over three hundred variations ranging from our red or grey tree dwellers to the larger prairie dogs. They also belong to that most successful order of mammals called Rodentia, or rodents. Rodents’ incisor teeth grow continuously and are kept short by gnawing. A rather callous joke by nature, for if there is nothing available for rodents to gnaw on their teeth become so long it inhibits feeding, thus causing the creatures to starve to death.
Where are we most likely to see squirrels in Linton? Well, almost anywhere, as this uninhibited mammal seems quite at ease helping itself to the food on your bird table. Turn your back in the churchyard, down by the mill, or the Pocket Park on a summer’s picnic and you could lose your hard boiled egg. Squirrels mainly feed on nuts and berries although they also eat eggs, insects and vegetable matter. Young squirrels awkwardly gnaw holes in shells to extract the nut, but they soon learn to find the weak seams and split the nut in one. I believe they grow to about twenty inches long, ten of which consist of that famous bushy tail. Their colours vary. Some have more red dispersed about their mainly grey and white head and body than others, but all seem to have fluffy white bellies, making them look adorable. I have not seen a single red squirrel in Linton but I am told some are doing well in Scotland. Truth is, until they can be protected against parapoxvirus we are unlikely to see one here. Still, you never know. Their territory remains unconquered until the last nut is cracked.

invaluable advice        Top

MY name is Owy, and I am a Community Information/Advice Worker, employed by (the adult part of) Connexions, formerly Cambridgeshire Careers Guidance. I am currently developing and delivering outreach work in South Cambs. providing information and advice on all aspects of learning and work, to any adult in the community who may be in need of such a service.
The services I can provide range from careers advice, (for example on CV construction or interview techniques), to information on and referral to more specialist advice on learning and work.
I carry information with me, along with a laptop complete with careers guidance software. If I do not have the specific information required, then I post items on later. I am able to offer both group work, and individual consultations. At present, I am running ‘drop-in’ sessions in Linton as follows:
Wednesday 29th January Linton Library 3-5pm Wednesday 5th February Linton Rock Café, Social Centre, 1.30-3pm. Wednesday 26th February Linton Rock Café, Social Centre, 1.30-3pm.
I look forward to seeing you!
Owy Thomas
Office 712800
Mobile 07747 038283

BROWNIES WAITING LIST        Top

I HAVE now taken over the management of the Brownies waiting list from Mrs Collard, who has been doing it for many years, and we would like to thank her very much. We have two Brownie Units in Linton, meeting on Monday and Wednesday evenings. So if you would like to add your daughter’s name on to the list, please ring me.
Daphne Brazier

K-CLUB WINNERS        Top

THE winners of January’s K-Club monthly draw:
1st (£50) Mrs B M Biggs (No. 049);
2nd (£25) Mr J Wintle (No. 326);
3rd prize (£10) Mrs L Dixon (No. 002).

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