Looking forward to summer

THIS MONTH we look forward to events planned for July, as well as reporting on several events which took place in May.
Books feature in a number of articles: our regular ‘For your bookshelf’ review this month is written by a work experience student at Fourbears Books (p5),
and we look back at the ‘Fourbears Book Festival’ with reports from both the adult (p5) and the children’s programme (p3), and a promise of another similar event next year. We also have an introduction to a new children’s book, written by local resident, Carsten, and his 5-year-old son (p11)…Read more

The Local Scene – The Moderation

THE MODERATION, the subject of Janina Maher’s painting this month, is a gastro pub in Caversham Road. The business is owned by husband and wife, Andy and Bee. Andy has had many years in the hospitality industry, having trained as a chef, and it was his master plan to turn the once run-down Moderation pub into a stylish Southeast Asian inspired gastro pub. However, it still retains a traditional atmosphere…Read more

A new lease of life after 20 years

THE COMMUNITY Noticeboard in the Emmer Green precinct has a long history. In 2004, Andrew Noyes, local wood carver was commissioned by the Emmer Green Residents’ Association (EGRA) to upgrade the board. The surround was carved out of English Oak and has been maintained ever since by a team of volunteers. It was refurbished in 2007 and upgraded in 2016. …Read more


Bringing children and books together at Fourbears Fest 24

THE CHILDREN’S programme of the inaugural Fourbears Fest got off to a fantastic start with a sold-out session in Caversham Baptist Church on Saturday 18 May. Creator of comics and graphic novelist Neill Cameron led the 100-strong audience of young comic fans and their parents in a workshop creating crazy characters and storylines. A frenzy of excited children queued to buy books and have them signed…Read more

Residents together

ON A GLORIOUS sunny evening, people gathered in the Caversham Baptist Church on Monday 20 May for the Caversham and District Residents Association (CADRA) AGM and open meeting. Helen Lambert, CADRA Chair, explained some of the issues ahead for Caversham and Emmer Green. For anyone wanting to keep up to date with what is going on locally, CADRA membership is a great way to keep in touch. Members pay £3 a year for the household…Read more


THE RABBLE THEATRE recently issued a press release announcing they will be leaving their current home at The Stables in Caversham Court. The award-winning company moved to the building in 2021, when Reading Borough Council (RBC) agreed to them occupying the building on the condition they raised the funds to save it from further degradation…Read more

All together in the garden

MAGINE A traditional Summer Fete, set in an idyllic Thameside garden on a beautiful afternoon, with fun and entertainment for all. Well, that is what will be happening on Saturday 13 July at Caversham Court in Church Road, Caversham.
You will be welcomed at the Parish Fete by members of the three churches, St Margaret, St Peter and St John, offering you a wonderful afternoon exploring the many stalls, with homemade cakes, plants, tombolas, books, bric-a-brac and more. Or try your skills at traditional sideshows such as hoopla, hook-a-duck, coconut shy and beat the goalie…Read more

For your bookshelf….

Welcome to ‘Fourbears Reviews’ where we briefly review a couple of titles chosen from our book shop ‘Fourbears Books’ in Caversham.

HELLO, MY name is Clara. I’m in Year 10 at Emmbrook School and I’m doing work experience at Fourbears Books.
Here are two of the books I have enjoyed recently: ‘Stone Blind’ by Natalie Haynes is a brilliant read, venturing into the world of Greek Mythology. It is entertaining and gripping, especially for those who have an obsession with Greek gods. This book is definitely worth a read…Read more

A dream comes true

WHEN I opened Fourbears Books, I dreamed of putting on a festival for the young and old, with a variety of genres and authors. In May, the dream became a reality. It wasn’t perfect, and when we do it again next year — which we will — it will be even better.
I couldn’t be happier with Caversham being the home of Fourbears, but I also want to grow and tell everyone in the Reading area about Fourbears Books. Knowing the Children’s Programme was in safe hands with Chris and Sarah from Reading Children’s Book Group, I chose to host the adult author events at the beautiful Progress Theatre in Reading…Read more

Happy Wanderer in search of THE ELUSIVE GOOSE BROOK

THE NAME OF Gosbrook Road, Caversham, intrigues me. It obviously referred to a ‘goose brook,’ but where exactly does (or did) the brook run?
According to John Malpas in his excellent little book, Caversham Names, this name occurs in a document of 1551 – when Caversham was very much a farming community. This brings to mind a romantic vision of a goose-girl (as in the tale by the Brothers Grimm) driving the geese down to the brook in the morning, keeping watch over them, and returning to fasten them in their pen in the evening…Read more

Looking after yourself – Headaches

HEADACHE IS A really common symptom. Most people get headaches. It is important to know when to be more concerned and seek medical attention.
Essentially, if there is a change in the headaches you experience, this can be a sign that there could be a more serious cause and you should get checked out. For example:

      •  You often get headaches roughly once a month but
        are now getting them most weeks
      • The severity of your headache has changed significantly

    Read more

    Pigmentation and Skin Blemishes

    WHATEVER YOUR age, there are few of us who haven’t experienced some sort of skin blemish, colour change or ‘pigmentation’. From sunburn to hormonal changes or infections – skin colour changes can sometimes make us feel self-conscious, worried, and searching for answers. In this article, I hope to touch lightly on some helpful information…Read more

    Caversham’s Magic Faraway Trees

    IN A WOOD far away, possibly an enchanted one, you might wander for some time before you find it. Elves might need to show you the way but, sooner or later, you’ll reach a certain tree. As you climb it, there might be cake with a fairy, or you might pass an angry pixie and dodge some laundry water. And at the top – what will you find?
    I loved Enid Blyton’s The Magic Faraway Tree as a child. It was almost certainly responsible for my interest in climbing garden trees, despite never finding any magical lands at the top. Blyton certainly has her detractors on literary and political fronts, yet something in her books continues to fire children’s imaginations…Read more


    SOMETIMES YOU should be wary when you are attempting to be a wonder gardener!
    Let me give you an example. Way back, probably in the twentieth century, I fancied having a lovely Robinia tree. They were quite expensive to buy, so when a friend said he could get me an inexpensive one, I took up the offer. I was happy with it, even if it did have a habit of shedding the occasional brittle branch, but it did rather grow and grow…Read more

    Music and art combine to make an impression

    MUSSORGSKY WAS inspired to compose Pictures at an Exhibition after seeing works by his artist friend Victor Hartmann on display in St Petersburg. Now pianist and composer Pamela Chilvers has been inspired to compose a series of 16 piano pieces to accompany portraits painted by Alastair Dunstan. Alastair’s pictures (above) and Pamela’s compositions can be viewed and heard together at a special event in Caversham.
    “I have been teaching Alastair’s father, Mark and when he showed me photos of Alastair’s paintings, I was completely blown away,” Pamela said. “When I discovered he needed models to paint, I thought this would be a way to meet Alastair himself – so I modelled for him…Read more

    Born from Resilience and Imagination

    LOCAL RESIDENT Carsten, an entrepreneur and independent filmmaker, who was unexpectedly diagnosed with advanced cancer on 1 October 2023, has collaborated with his 5-year-old son, Sidney, to create a children’s book called A Sweet Journey Through Space – The Exciting Adventures of Chocolate, The Little Alien. This whimsical tale is now available and has already started touching hearts with its story of adventure, friendship, and the pure magic of a child’s fantasy.
    This inspiring project began as a way to cherish life’s precious moments despite adversity. The narrative was entirely conceived by Sidney…Read more

    Community Connections – Mr and Mrs Patel, Markand Pharmacy

    MARKAND PHARMACY is a well-known and loved presence in the row of shops on Henley Road, and Mr and Mrs Patel have been an essential part of countless people’s lives for the last 36 years.
    Mr Patel grew up and went to school in West London. As soon as he qualified as a pharmacist, he moved around as a locum in the London area.
    Then for three years he travelled up and down to Reading, working in Broad Street Mall and Emmer Green amongst other places. Mrs Patel, born in Tanzania, came to the UK in 1983 to be with her new husband…Read more

    First Impressions Matter – It’s all in the preparation

    BEFORE SITTING down to write your CV, there are some items you can gather to make the job easier. Below are the things I suggest you check or find and, before you know it, you’ll be tapping away.

        •  Access to a computer – to type your CV, ideally in Word. Don’t be lured by the fancy templates – clear and simple is what you’re looking for.
        •  Printer – useful if you process information better in the printed form.

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    Wellbeing – Stand like a flamingo!

    RESEARCHERS SAY the ability to stand on one leg for at least 10 seconds can be an indicator of your overall health and that a lack of balance can be a sign of underlying health issues. Other indicators, such as grip strength and walking speed have also been linked to overall health.
    Here are the rules:

        • Keep your eyes open and your hands on your hips
        • Stand on one leg without any other support
        • Time starts when your foot leaves the ground and stops when you put your foot back down (or take your hands off your hips)

    Read more