The Tintern News


Produced by the Friends of Tintern – March 2008









St. Michael’s Church Tintern – Restoration Fund


A bank account has been set up to restore and repair St. Michael's Church Tintern in the hope that it will continue to serve the people of this village for a few more years yet.


This ancient building has already stood for many centuries and it would be a great shame if it was allowed to deteriorate during our allotted time of care and so we are asking for financial help from village families who feel able to support us.


Perhaps someone would like to remember a loved one or give thanks for a baptism or wedding, which took place here or just because having a church in the village gives it a heart.  I would dearly like to thank those who have already donated because without your support we may have found the task too daunting already.


The bank account name is 'St. Michael’s Church Tintern Restoration Fund' and you may contact me on 01291 626784 or call at St. Michael's between 10.00 a.m. and 12.00 noon any Sunday, or I would be happy to call on you.


So whether your interest in Tintern Church is spiritual, archaeological, historical, genealogical or social please help us to preserve it for the future.

Many thanks Rev. Nora Hill


Tel: 01291 625833





Tintern Community Council

The first tier not the bottom tier


Report of Meetings - 7th  and 28th January  2008


The Council were delighted to hear that the Friends of Tintern Christmas lunch for the over 60’s at the Abbey Hotel was a great success and councillors felt that the Christmas lights had been an improvement on last year.


Councillor Bennett announced that he was to resign from the Board of Governors of Llandogo School after 21 years service. The Council thanked him for his effort. The community, will in the future, be represented by Councillor Dagger of Trellech Community Council.


Constable Mason had asked at the November meeting that an error made in the September minutes concerning his report be corrected in the Tintern News. The matter concerned a discussion held at the meeting concerning drug abuse in the village. It was incorrectly reported that Constable Mason was very concerned about the problem. In fact it was the Council that made this comment. The clerk apologises to Constable Mason for the error.


Constable Cowburn, the new Community Officer, attended the 28th January meeting and was welcomed by the Chairman. He gave a summary of the crimes committed since 24 December 2007. 24 incidents were detailed. A complete list is available from the clerk.


The Council were very concerned by the recent landslip and welcomed the meeting to be held in early February with MCC and The Forestry Commission. There was also to be a public meeting in February with MCC to discuss the problems with ‘A’ boards and banners in the village.


There was also considerable concern expressed over the reduction in postal services available in the village with the planned closure of the Post Office at the Cherry Tree. The Council composed a response to the Post Office giving reasons why the closure was a backward step and also pointing out the disadvantages of the proposed mobile replacement.


The new planning applications considered by the Council were:


DC/2007/01638: Outline Planning Permission – Detached dwelling. Land at Chapel Cottage, Chapel Lane.

Community Council Recommendation:  REFUSE

Comment:  1. Archaeological significance needs to be investigated. 2. Retaining walls part of wireworks.


DC/2007/01639: Planning Permission, Retention of patio handrail and infill glass panels (Removal  of Condition 2 of planning permission DC/2007/00824), Barbadoes Meadows

Community Council Recommendation: APPROVE

Subject to following condition: The glass used should be non-reflective ass the glass can reflect the sun on to the A466 highway carriage way.



DC/2008/00006: Planning Permission (outline) –Erection of one dwelling, land opposite Old Cider Mill, Trellech Road

Community Council Recommendation: REFUSE


1.    Outside of village boundary and therefore cannot be regarded as an infill.

2.    Mains water is not available at this location.

3.    Rainwater drainage is a serious problem in this area which would be exacerbated by another development.


Councillor Dawn Floyd

Chairman of the Community Council



St. Michael’s Wharf


The Community Council established its ownership of the wharf in 1995 and since then has the land registered under its name at the Land Registry. However, the Council are now questioning if this is an asset or a liability to them, as it has to be inspected regularly for riverside safety features such as a lifebuoy and emergency telephone numbers. The Council have also noted that some of the protective fence they were asked to put up by the safety organization ROSPA has been pulled down. It is also becoming a dumping ground for rubbish.


The Council would therefore like to hear from community members their opinion on the future of this piece of land. Should it be sold? Or what could the Council do with it? The Council would like to hear your comments.


Parking on the Promenade


The Council has asked Monmouthshire County Council if the riverside car park opposite Tintern Antiques and Stella’s Books could be time limited. In other words the parking there would be restricted to, say, 2 hours maximum. This is an attempt to stop day long and overnight parking which means the car park is often full all the time and stops people parking who want to walk along the promenade briefly or visit the shops. There is also a possibility that a portion of the car park be reserved for residential parking at any time for a fixed fee.


The Council would like community thoughts on this proposal before they ask Monmouthshire County Council to act. They are especially keen to hear from residents who would  be directly affected by these changes.


Please let your local councillor know or contact the clerk. A list of names and telephone numbers is on all village notice boards. Thanks for your cooperation in these community issues. Roger Hopson, Clerk, 3 The Row, St. Arvans, CHEPSTOW, NP16 6EP



Report from County Councillor Ann Webb regarding recent happenings in the Village


Landslide: Public Meeting on 4th February 2008


Support at the Public Meeting from the Village just showed to the Officers from the Forestry Commission and Monmouthshire County Council how much the recent landslides have affected life in the Village particularly to businesses and those using the A466 on a regular basis. The Forestry Commission will now give regular updates of their improvement scheme.  As well as keeping up to date on the progress with the work both Authorities are doing, I am pressing for a plan so that when the Highways Authority execute any improvement and restoration work, there will be a minimum amount of disruption, particularly in connection with signage. Also the parking places in the Village have been reduced and I am therefore working with the Officers at County Hall to look to using the Saw Mills Car Park ‘officially’. We all know it is already used by many people, and also as an emergency tipping area during the recent landslide.


The future of Tintern Post Office


Last week the Cabinet at County Hall adopted ‘that the future decision relating to all Post Offices be postponed until further negotiation with the Local County Council Member’. I hope that the Post Office will recognise the important social function the present service provides to the local community. Might I suggest a Public Meeting where everyone can air their views like the successful landslide meeting should be arranged.


I will be at the Village Hall on Monday 3rd March between 6pm and 7pm for anyone to come and meet me regarding the above, or any other issues relating to the services provided by the County Council.


Ann Webb, Home Farm. Tel. 01291 689559



Tintern Post Office.  A letter from Hatti Pegram


As most villagers will have received another communication from the Wye valley Liberal Democrats I thought they may be interested to read the letter I sent in answer to the previous one on the closure of the village post office.  Although I received no reply from Rev. Martin Blakebrough, and doubt very much that it will be one of the letters forwarded to the The Post Office Company, this latest issue of Focus,  (which appears to focus on the Reverend himself (four photos) as much as it does on the issues under consideration) suggests, to me at least, that the letter may have been more than a little influential.




Springfield, Tintern Chepstow Mons. NP16 6TH.  25th January 2008

Dear Martin Blakebrough,

I write in response to your petition for the retention of the village post office.
In paragraph five you refer to the elderly and those without transport. You have obviously never used the Tintern post office located in the Cherry Tree pub, which is situated on a steep hill. Had you done so you would have noticed that the only way the elderly, lame and infirm can use it is to get there by car unless they are close neighbours. Although I deeply regret the closure of the village post office, (I cannot speak for Devauden and Mathern) if the effect is to have fewer cars parked on the narrow main road, causing considerable inconvenience to local road users, I consider the ‘outreach’ proposal located in an accessible place to be more advantageous. I think the location should be nearer the surgery, which presumably most elderly people use, off the main road, perhaps outside the village hall or back at Abbey Mills where the previous post office was located.

In paragraph two you rather flippantly refer to the van being operated from a place, which in your words “We all know this is hardly the safest place”. Are you seriously suggesting that Tintern has become an unsafe place to live or walk through? I really think this jocular statement (the exclamation mark would suggest that this is supposed to be a bit of a laugh) shows a complete lack of thought and understanding of the concerns of the villagers. Surely The Wye Valley Liberal Democrats policies are not as facile as your letter would suggest?


Hatti Pegram
Copy to County Councillor Phil Hobson.




At the February monthly meeting we nearly tied ourselves up in knots learning or relearning crochet skills.  We haven’t quite completed a double bed sized blanket yet, but we will get there one day!  We also did a memory game, won by Di Parsons, so our brains were well and truly exercised.  Tea and delicious home made cakes helped to take away the pain of concentration. 


The next WI meeting will be on Monday March 17th at 2.00pm. in the Village Hall when Mr Simon Antony from Monmouthshire County Council will be speaking on “recycling”. This should be a very informative talk and of interest to many people.  New members are very welcome so do come along to the next meeting.


In April instead of meeting in the Village hall we are travelling to Abergavenny to visit the Silk factory.






Due to the landslip and closure of the main road our first meeting of the year, the AGM  on Fri 18th January was cancelled . The outstanding AGM business was dealt with as an extension of the meeting planned on  Friday 15th February in the Village Hall. The meeting started with  an inspiring illustrated talk by Mrs J Challoner  on “Low Maintenance Gardens”.   At the following AGM  VPA officers for the coming year were agreed, the accounts for 2007 and the projection for 2008 were discussed and details of the programme for 2008 were finalised.


The next meeting will be on Friday 14th  March  at 7.30 pm in the Village Hall when Mrs S Vaughan  will give a talk on “Hedgerow Baskets”.   Note that this meeting is earlier in the month than usual  (2nd Friday  rather than 3rd Friday) as the 21st  is Easter holiday time.  


The membership fee for the year is  £5.00 per member, which includes a discount card for Millbrook Garden Centre (from April) which can quickly recover the cost of membership. If any new members are interested in joining contact Bernard or Christine Bradshaw at 10 Parva Springs  on 01291 689877  or come along to a meeting.




Church Services – United Benefice of Tintern and Llandogo with Whitebrook


St. Michael’s Church, TinternCommunion Service 10.30am every Sunday

Rev. Nora Hill.


Church Notices for March

Sunday 2nd March - Mothering Sunday Service 10.30a.m.
Friday 7th March - Women's World Day of Prayer 12.00noon
Sunday 9th March - Holy Communion 10.30.a.m.
Friday 14th March - Lent Holy Communion 12.00noon
Sunday 16th March - Palm Sunday Service
Sunday 23rd March - Easter Sunday Service 7.00a.m. & 10.30a.m.
(Good Friday Meditations at Llandogo Church 12.00noon to 3.00p.m.)
St. Oudoceus Church, Llandogo – Communion Service 9.00am every Sunday

Rev. John Dearnley


Everyone is warmly invited to all of these services.


Tintern Pentecostal Church - every Sunday at 11:00am and 6:00pm and every Wednesday at 7:30pm




TAP Project March 2008 Update


There have been no developments since the February update. The Planning Application and Environment Agency licence applications are proceeding through their consultation phases. Decisions are not expected until April.


The desk top archaeological survey requested by the Glamorgan and Gwent Archaeological Trust has been completed. A detailed brief was issued by GGAT which involved a much wider investigation than initially envisaged, although there was not a requirement to dig any trial pits during the survey. The desk top study indicates that the Project is unlikely to have an impact on the archaeology in the valley.

The survey of bryophytes in the Angiddy will be carried out in early March. This will complement the Ecolgical Survey report already issued by Wye Valley Surveys.


Landowner permission from MCC is still outstanding.


TAP has withdrawn its application to the Welsh Assembly Government for Axes 3 funding. In order to qualify, it was necessary to have planning permission in place by 31st January. This does not preclude TAP from applying for the next round of funding.


Water flow rates in the Angiddy remain well above the levels required to support the project, despite the dry February.


Further details about the project can be seen on the web page


If you would like to become a member of TAP, the web page includes an application form which can be printed and posted. Membership only costs £1. Alternatively please contact Morris Jones on 01291 689550.


Please help

Letters in support of the Project could be helpful to the success of the Planning Application. This can be done on line. Type “Monmouthshire Council Planning” into Google. Click on “Monmouthshire Council-Planning”. Click on “Planning Applications”. Click on “View Planning Applications” and enter the number 01452 into the application number box. Click “search”. Under the heading”Case File” click on the box marked ”Comment on application”.

Alternatively, you may write to Monmouthshire County Council, Planning Department at County Hall, Cwmbran NP44 2XH. Quoting the reference number 2007 / 01452


                                                                                                                                                Norman Williams

                                                                                            Marketing & Publicity Director      

Tintern Angiddy Project Ltd

                                                 Telephone 01291 680016

E Mail


Forestry Commission – Landslide update 12/02/08


Following the recent landslide on Tuesday 15th January, Forestry Commission Wales have carried out immediate emergency work to ensure that the landslip is a stable as possible and any risk of further movement minimised. We have also put in place diversion work across the forest to try and prevent excessive surface water running on to the slip in case we have a repeat of the level of rainfall that we experienced prior to the recent landslide occurring.


An independent firm of consulting engineers, Halcrows, is arranging an investigation of the landslide area.


From Monday 11th February a company called Info Map Surveys will carryout a detailed topographic survey across the hillside on Halcrow’s behalf. This will take about a week to complete.


On Wednesday 13th February a company called Soil Mechanics Ltd., will mobilise on site to drill three boreholes into the upper part of the slope to define the underlying geological conditions. They will investigate groundwater within the quarry waste/landslip material and recover samples for strength testing. It is anticipated that this work will take up to two weeks. There may be some intermittent noise associated with the drilling but the contractor will be limited to working from 0.800 to 17.30 on Mondays to Fridays only.


For Health and Safety reasons, members of the public are requested not to approach the works in progress and to keep off the landslip area, as there is still a risk of unstable ground.


If you would like any further information then please contact” Richard Gable, Local Area Manager, E-mail:



Personal Notices


Belated Happy 18th Birthday to Melissa Ball on 29th January.

Happy 16th Birthday to Sarah Ball on 4th March

Happy Birthday to Richard Ball on 25th March

Happy Birthday to Denny Speak – formerly of Tintern – on 25th March


THE LATE MARG MATTHEWS (15th January 2008)


On behalf of the Matthews family, I would like to thank everyone who attended the funeral. What a day to remember as there was a flood outside the Wye Valley Hotel that morning and as the funeral was taking place the landslide occurred. Marg would have been in awe with all this going on. After the lovely service given by our newish lady vicar, Nora, we all went back to the Moon & Sixpence for refreshments, which, I must say, went on until well into the evening.


Marg leaves five sons, Bobby, Lyndon, David, Timothy and Johnathan, and three grandchildren and two great grandchildren.


A special thanks goes to Margaret (David’s partner) for all her love and care to Marg during her illness, as Marg lived with them for the last few months of her life. Also, thanks to Betty Hoskins, Marg’s friend, for always taking her to collect her pension and to doctor’s appointments.


She will be sadly missed by all, and it is strange seeing new people in the house she had lived in for 50 years.




St. Michael’s Church - Cleaning Rota - fortnight beginning:


10th March                   Ann and Barry Richardson    

24th March                   Elspeth and Karen

7th April                       Janet, Sue and Barbara

21st April                     Tintern WI

5th May                        Carole Evans

19th May                      Jude Spooner

2nd June                       Trudy and Nine Phelps


Diary - Tintern Events.

Tintern Youth Club every Wednesday from 6.30 – 8.00pm – Village Hall

Friday 14th March - Tintern VPA at 7.30 pm in the Village Hall

Monday 17th March - Tintern WI at 2.00pm in Tintern Village Hall

Monday 17th March – Village Hall Committee 7.30pm Village Hall

12th   27th April. Parva Vineyard - Come and See the Spring Lambs



If you wish to book the village hall please ring 07512 856024 or email: Please note the following: Bookings need to be made at least 7 days in advance. Payment will need to be made in advance except for regular users.


Catbrook Memorial Hall – Events

Saturday 15th March at 7.30 pm - Wine Tasting Evening organised by Peter & Carol Ayling.  Spanish Wines to be tasted with Paella Supper.
Friday 18th April at 7.30 pm - Tony Jacobs - 100 Years of Popular Song.
Saturday 21st June - Midsummer Dance with Wye Jazz.  More details to follow.
Friday 4th-Sunday 6th July - Art for Africa Exhibition.
September 27th - Provisional booking for John Prior's Old Time Musical Hall "All Together Now".  More details and confirmation to follow.

Coffee Mornings held on the third Tuesday of each month at 10.30 a.m.  All welcome.

Yoga Classes now commenced on Tuesday evenings and Thursday mornings.  Contact Ruth on 01600-860648 for details.

For details of all other events or to hire the hall contact Rosemary Stephens on 01600-860451.



Advertising in the Tintern News

The Tintern News is delivered to approximately 250 houses in Tintern.  If you would like to advertise something in the News the current rates is £5.00 for a small ad./half a page, and £10.00 for a full page (per month).  Please send items to the editor at the address below with full contact details.


Items for the Newsletter – dates for the April 2008 edition

Items for the Tintern Newsletter can be sent by email to delivered to Wye Barn, Tintern. Items for the March Newsletter should be received by Thursday 27th March, 2008.


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


Tintern News is sponsored by Monmouthshire County Council Welsh Church Act Fund.