The Tintern News


Produced by the Friends of Tintern – October 2006




Last month you may remember that we were expecting a delay in the delivery of our flu vaccines and that our flu clinics may be delayed. Luckily this has now been resolved and we have arranged our flu clinics as follow.

TUESDAY 10th OCTOBER       8.30am-4.00pm

WEDNESDAY 11th OCTOBER 10.00am-6.00pm

Both clinics will be held at Tintern Village Hall. No appointments will be necessary and on each occasion there will be 2 people vaccinating so we do not anticipate long waiting times. The ladies of the WI will also be at the hall serving tea and coffee as they did last year.

Parking is plentiful at the side of and behind the village hall.

We hope that this years clinics will be as successful as they were last year and we hope to see all of you there.

We are also pleased to announce that the surgery now has it's own web site, do visit and have a browse at <> .

Did you know that repeat prescriptions can also be ordered via the internet? Please see the web site for more information or see one of our receptionists for more information.


See you soon, Sally.




Tintern Community Council

The first tier not the bottom tier


Monthly Report of August 2006 Meeting


Constable Andy Mason was on holiday so there was no police report.


Rhidian Jones from the Rural Housing Enabler Organisation attended the meeting. This organisation attempts to get affordable housing built in a community. He outlined the way that householders and people wishing to return to the community will be surveyed in the autumn. This will take the form, I’m afraid, of another questionnaire. The councillors are finalising the questions and the survey will be done by post commencing in October.


The financial situation was outlined and showed the Council has funds of £5158 after payments for August were made. (Please note the accounts of the council are open for viewing at any time by arrangement with the clerk).


The Council agreed that all its historical records will be sent to the County Archive at County Hall. There they will be stored in an air conditioned, fire proof environment and will be available to the public for viewing during the normal working week. It has been decided that one of the Councils objectives of installing a cycle rack will go ahead straight away. The clerk has been asked to purchase a rack capable of holding six cycles which will be located on the Quayside road next to the Hall. It was also agreed to complete the ROSPA (Royal Society for Prevention of Accidents) recommendations for a one metre fence at Friar’s Wharf between the open area and the riverbank.  The riverbank will also be planted with bramble-like shrubs to deter people from getting close to the river. This was a consideration when the area was assessed for insurance purposes and needs to be done for safety reasons.


There was only one planning application to be considered and this concerned the renovation of Chapel Cottage in Chapel Lane. The application also included a conservatory and porch. Councillors decided to recommend M.C.C. to refuse permission on the grounds that the proposed development is too large for the area and would be detrimental to the fact that it is an archaeological site and is included in the Wye Valley designated AON (Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty).


The work on Survey 2006 continues and full details are shown separately to this report.


The meeting decided to ask a contractor to cut verges etc. owned by them for the remainder of the year. How grass cutting will be handled in 2007 is yet to be decided. The problem with the refuse spillage due to rodents in the communal bin on the Raglan Road has still not been solved. M.C.C. has asked for £8 a week to replace it with an equivalent wheelie bin. The council feels this is unreasonable given that the emptying of the communal bin is already paid for as a part of the community charge.


Gloucester Harbour Trust (who is responsible for the river up to Bigsweir) has supplied a list of the legal requirements for any river based development at Friar’s Wharf. These would have to be considered before any landing equipment was used. Because of the importance of this organisation to Tintern it was agreed to appoint a councillor to represent the community at Harbour Trustee meetings.


Finally the Council expressed its regret at not being informed of the erection of the new statue in the Abbey, but is looking forward to a progress review by the Angiddy Hydroelectric Project team at the next meeting.


Councillor Dawn Floyd

Chairman of the Community Council


Monmouthshire County Council – Elected Member


As your elected Member to Monmouthshire County Council, which provides all local services, my wish is to represent your views and assist wherever possible.


If I can be of assistance to you please do contact me


Ann Webb

Trellech Grange

NP16 6QW


Telephone: 01291 689559





I’m sad to say that Mariana-Art Gallery in Tintern will be closing at the end of October this year….. because I’m moving to bigger, permanent premises over the border, in the village of St. Briavels.  I have made many local friends here in Tintern, but as Andi Francis’s article last month so aptly pointed out, without the will of the local community council to support small businesses in the village, the gallery space alone just isn’t viable.  Lack of parking and the speed and volume of traffic through Tintern means that visitors simply cannot stop and park where they want to.  The lack of a footpath outside the gallery makes it difficult for people to walk along safely.


However, these points are not the only reason for moving premises.  I want to expand my art business and have my own facility in which to teach as well as having a larger display area for my original paintings.  The sale of greetings cards both to individuals and to the trade is expanding, and I need more storage space.  St. Briavels may not be the ideal place for tourist footfall, but you can at least park outside!  My new premises at the site of the Old Pottery, on East Street need to undergo a massive transformation before I open, but I’m hoping to get things up and running by Christmas.


Through the pages of Tintern Village News, I would like to express my thanks to Andi for being a super landlord and to the Tintern community in general for their support over the last two years in getting my Art Gallery off the drawing board.  I hope many of you will come to visit the new premises in St. Briavels and perhaps call round at the Castle or see the effigy in the church of the first Mariana to St. BriavelsMariana Catchmay.


SALE NOW ON – Massive savings on original paintings until the end of October.  Some with up to 50% off.  And just like Harrods, I have some Christmas Cards in stock….. if you can bear the thought so early.


Watercolour course enquiries – 01594 530484




The monthly meeting of the Tintern VPA was held on Friday 15th September in the Village Hall


The speaker was Mr D Collett who gave a talk on “Growing and Showing Vegetables”.He brought along samples of vegetables he has grown, explained to the members how to show them and, perhaps more importantly gave advice on how to grow them successfully, answering member’s questions as he went along.  Mr Collett has lived in the area all his life and been a keen gardener for many years and therefore had a wealth of amusing anecdotes to tell  both as a gardener and of his working life on the local railways. He has been a judge at exhibitions for many years and now also appears on television.  Before leaving, Mr Collett handed round some of his vegetables for the members to try and handed out beautiful, show dahlias for the ladies.


The next meeting will be on Friday 20th October at 7.30 pm in the Village Hall, when the speaker will be Mr A Woods of Nurtons talking about “The Making of a Garden”.  The competition will be for autumn foliage and/or a pumpkin.  New members are very welcome.




The September meeting of Tintern WI saw the welcome return of Rev. Rutter, who gave an illustrated talk on the formation of the rock formation of the hills. He showed some beautiful slides of the countryside and the Cotswolds towns.


The WI also saw slides of some of the National Trust houses in the area together with a brief history of them.


The WI will be serving tea, coffee and homemade biscuits on flu jab days in the Village Hall – 10th/11th October.


Next month’s meeting will be a discussion session.


For further information contact Jean Davey (01291 689212)


A letter from Mr. Alan Butt


I feel I must respond to the comments in the last two copies of the Village News in which the writer implies that the Community Council for the most part is useless and ineffectual to the running of the village and that the traditional businesses in the village are dyed in the wool, old hat and uninventive. I would inform the writer that most of the village considers that the Community Council does the best it can with the financial restraints and lack of overall control that it has to endure. I would also remind the writer that businesses such as The Anchor, The Royal George, The Moon & Sixpence and others have successfully managed to continue for many years and more over have given employment to most of the local inhabitants at some time in their lives over the past several decades. Most of these local businesses have also contributed greatly to the fund raising for the Christmas lighting, the Old Folks Christmas Dinners and other good causes in the village.


The writer has not been seen to contribute to many of these causes and never seems to attend the fund raising functions that keep this village alive and I would like to remind him that one failed Curios shop employing no local labour does not give him the right to ridicule the efforts of the successful businesses in the village. He also mentions with some scorn the car boot sales and as he is not involved in the village fund raising obviously does not realise that during my occupation of The Anchor most of the [pitch] revenue from these boot sales was given to the local surgery to help purchase equipment and that under the present regime the monies go to supporting our village football and cricket teams.


The danger of the road junction at the doctors’ surgery, which the writer complains about the boring regularity, was brought about in no small part by his own efforts. Many businesses objected to the planning consent of the café premises on the corner, as did the local council on the grounds that it was a danger to road users and the public at large, but permission was gained by a higher authority. Due to the lack of business in the winter and the dangerous location, the café will always have great difficulty with its economic survival, but the danger of it will still remain.


I strongly suggest that the writer of the past articles tries to help the village by giving some financial support and taking an interest in its well being instead of this continuous criticism.


Myself and family are just preparing to attend the village race night at The Royal George to help raise more funds for the running of the Christmas lights and other good causes, and I am not expecting to see the writer of the scurrilous articles at this function either. And I would say to him “at least come to live in our village before you continue to run it down so badly”.


Alan Butt (10.09.06)


Supporting Tintern Community Council


I think that my criticism of TCC and MCC has been mistaken for having a go at the current committee. This is not the case and I believe that pressure should come from us out here on our representatives to deliver results. That does not mean that I would not support them in delivering a result. I am quite willing to help out.


The Chair is in a hot seat as nothing much has happened for years, I hope that she gets the support from her fellow councillors and is able to bring in fresh blood and replace the old guard as it realizes that it is time to move on and let others with time and energy help to get results.


On another subject I need to make clear that in my previous writings I was mistaken by hearsay when suggesting that the girls were not looking when crossing the road.


To close I would like to tell you about an experience that I have recently had. I have for years had a pain in my left side since lifting something far too heavy for my strength. I have tried all sorts of ways to sort it out and nothing has worked until now. One of my friends here in Tintern has recently qualified to practice Reiki which is an alternative therapy healing programme. I thought why not, if mobile phones work why not human energy transfer?????!!!!!


Well after 3 sessions the pain had completely vanished, brilliant and thank you Sharon.


With kindest intentions, Andi Francis. (22.09.06)


The Circle of Life


In view of all the recent publicity concerning water shortage in Britain, perhaps the following conversation will be of interest. It was picked up during some strange atmospheric disturbance affecting radio reception.


God:    St. Francis, you know all about garden and Nature. What in the world’s going on down there? What happened to the dandelions, violets, thistles and stuff I started ages ago?  I had a perfect no maintenance garden plan. Those plants grow in any type of soil, withstand drought and multiply with abandon. The nectar from the long-lasting flowers attracts butterflies, honeybees, and flocks of songbirds. I expected to see a vast garden of colours by now, but all I see is those green rectangles.

St.Francis:      It’s the tribe that settled there, Lord, the Suburbanites. They started calling your flowers ‘weeds’ and went to great lengths to kill them and to replace them with grass.

God:    Grass? But it’s so boring. It’s not colourful, it doesn’t attract butterflies, birds and bees, only grubs and worms. It’s temperamental with temperature. Do these Suburbanites really want so much grass?

St.Francis:      Apparently so, Lord. The take great pains to grow it and to keep it green. They begin in the spring by fertilizing it, and poisoning any other plant that crops up in their lawn.

God:    The spring rains and warm weather probably makes grass grow really well. That must make the Suburbanite really happy.

St.Francis:      Apparently not, Lord. As soon as it grows a little they cut, sometimes twice a week.

God:    Cut it? Do they bale it like hay?

St.Francis:      Not exactly. Most of them rake it up and put it in bags.

God:    They bag it? Why? Is it a cash crop? Do they sell it?

St. Francis:     No sir. Just the opposite. They pay to have someone to throw it away.

God:    Let me get this straight. They fertilize grass to make it grow, and then they cut it down and pay someone to throw it away?

St.Francis:      That’s right. You’ve got it.

God:    These Suburbanites must be pleased in the summer when I cut back on the rain and turn up the heat. That surely reduces the growth and saves them a lot of work.

St.Francis:      You may not believe this! When the grass stops growing they haul out hosepipes and pay more money to water it so that they can keep on cutting it, and paying to get rid of it.

God:    What utter nonsense! At least they keep some of the trees. That was a stroke of genius if I do say it myself: the trees grow leaves in the spring to provide beauty and shade in the summer. In the autumn they provide lovely colours and the leaves fall to the ground to form a natural blanket to keep moisture in the soil to protect the trees and other plants. Plus, as they rot, the leaves form compost to enhance the soil. It’s the natural circle of life.

St.Francis: You had better sit down, Lord. As soon as the leaves fall, the Suburbanites rake them into great piles, and pay to have them taken away.

God:    No! What do they do to protect the roots of all the plants and trees in winter, and to keep the soil moist and loose?

St.Francis:      Well, after they have cleared away the leaves, many of them go out and buy something they call ‘mulch’. They haul this home and spread it around in place of the leaves.

God:    And from where do they get this mulch?

St.Francis:      They cut down trees and grind them up to make the mulch.

God:    Enough! Enough! We have to break this cycle. Turn of the rain, and dry up the lakes! St.Catherine, you’re in charge of art and entertainment. What movie have you chosen for us tonight?

St.Catherine:  It’s an interesting little sketch about Earthlings called “The Dumb and the Dumber”. It shows what they do but does not explain ……

God:    No thanks. I’ve just heard the script from St.Francis.


(Anonymous, with thanks to the Parish Magazine of St.Martin of Tours, Chelsfield) and to Harry Hutchinson.




Race Night Sunday 10th September


Thank you to those who turned out on Sunday 10th September.  It was a rather disappointing evening as there was, due to the poor turn out, not much profit made to put to the Christmas Lights fund.  Again there were many of the usual faces who tirelessly continue to support fund raising in the village, but we do need some new support at these events.


Thank you to Sue and janet for their hard work organising the event and thank you also to the Royal George for the use of the room.


High Tides in Tintern


Saturday 7th October – 9.00pm – 8.30m

Sunday 8th October – 9.22am – 8.10m

Sunday 8th October – 9.42pm – 8.30pm

Monday 9th October – 10.02am – 8.00m

Monday 9th October - 10.23pm – 8.00m


Sunday 5th November – 7.35pm – 7.90m


Tintern Abbey


Sunday 15th October, 2006




Fun for all the family


Brass Rubbing Workshop  11.00am to 1.00pm


Calligraphy Workshop  2.00pm to 4.00pm


Plus Drawing Competition!  All Day.


Workshops led by “Brother Thomas”


Normal admission fees apply



Forms for obtaining and renewing the free local residents’ passes for Tintern Abbey, are available from the Post Office in the Cherry Tree Stores during normal Post Office hours.




Personal Notices


Friends of Tintern would like to thank Mr. Andi Francis for his donation  of photocopying paper to help with the publication of the Newsletter. This is much appreciated.


Congratulations to Gemma and Will on the birth of their baby daughter on 25th September 2006.


Best wishes to Sue Ball for a good recovery from her recent operation.


Belated Happy Birthday to Janet Hill on 24th September.


Happy Birthday to Kimberley Morgan, (daughter of Geoff and Liz Weidner) on 2nd October.


Happy Birthday to Timmy Ball, also on 2nd October.


It has been brought to the attention of the Newsletter that Dr. Calland is to retire shortly.





  1. Reclining chair – soft green – as new
  2. Fireside chair – wood and dark red velour
  3. Rocking chair, wood and dark green velour


For further information please ring Jane Rhodes – 01291 689914



Tintern Village Events

Wednesday 11th October – Bingo at the Anchor

Friday 20th October 7.30 pm – VPA  - Village Hall,

Sunday 10th December 6.30pm – Christmas Lights Switch On at the Royal George Hotel

Monday 11th December, 12 noon – Old Folks Christmas Party at the Anchor Hotel.


Catbrook Village Events


Friday 6th October - Film Night - The Constant Gardener.
Saturday 21st October - High Jinx Theatre Evening.

Friday 3rd November - Film Night - Walk the Line.
Friday 24th November - ArtsVariety Show featuring Frank Hennessy & Friends.
Saturday 9th December - Dougie Watts Singing Duo - back by popular demand.

New Year’s Evening – Disco and Supper. Further details later.
A Coffee Morning is held in the hall every third Tuesday of the month commencing at 10.30 am.  Everyone welcome.
Yoga Classes held every Tuesday evening and Thursday morning.  Call Ruth Routh on 01600- 860648 for details.

Whist Drives:-
Friday 15th and 29th December
For details of all other events or to hire the hall contact Betty Maloney on 01600-860548.






Items for the Newsletter


Items for the Tintern Newsletter from home or abroad can be sent by email to delivered to Wye Barn, Tintern, or tel 01291 689456.


Please ensure that items for the November edition of the Newsletter are received by 26th October, 2006.


The Tintern News Letter is sponsored by the Lower Wye Area Committee.





A note from the Editor


The Tintern News is a vehicle for the expression of opinion by all members of the Tintern community. While it does not necessarily endorse the views of any particular contributors, it does wholeheartedly support the promotion of lively debate on the development of the village and of freedom of speech in general. However, it will reserve the right to edit any contributions in order to preserve moderation and a spirit of good intent in the presentation of arguments. Thoughts from everyone in our community will continue to be very welcome. ER