Headlines for January Issue

Caversham Post Office closure, and shopping and services in Caversham: changes and challenges
During November 2018 Caversham residents learned of the proposal to close the current Caversham Post Office: more formally, the Caversham sub-Post Office in Church Street. For a number of years this Post Office has been located in the Day Lewis pharmacy on the north side of the road opposite the St Martin’s precinct. Day Lewis are closing their Caversham operation for commercial reasons and the property has been sold for development. At the same time the public has been informed of the proposal to close the ‘Crown’ Post Office at 21-22, Market Place with the plan to continue their level of service inside…. (Read more)

Grit Bins retained for the Winter
All 47 grit bins in Reading will remain in place for the coming winter, following an annual review of winter service provision. The Council had intended to stop grit bin provision in the Borough during 2018 as part of a package of budget savings agreed earlier in the year. All grit bins will now be retained as a result of the highways team identifying efficiency savings elsewhere in its budget.  Every year Reading Borough Council puts in…. (Read more)

Caversham Methodist Church (Gosbrook Road): Toys and Teens Appeal
This year Gosbrook Road Methodist Church supported the ‘Toys and Teens Appeal’ (on behalf of Reading Family Aid). This was very successful, with gifts donated by Church members and friends. The Babies and Toddler Group donated many baby toys, such as rattles, stacking toys, and posting box type….. (Read more)

Camino de Santiago de Compostela: reflections of a pilgrim
It all started at 6.55am on Wednesday 19th September! Following morning prayers at the Statue of St. James Church, our group of 25 ‘Peregrinos’ boarded the coach to Stanstead for our flight to Santiago de Compostela in North West Spain. It was a fine day and our flight was smooth and comfortable. On arrival at Santiago Airport, we boarded the coach to our destination, Lugo, approximately 110km East from Santiago. As we approached Lugo, the…. (Read more)

Reading Hard of Hearing club: Lipreading classes
Reading Hard of Hearing Club members understand what it is like to have a hearing loss which can make you feel lonely and isolated. Do you have difficulty in following what people say? Do you sometimes feel frustrated and convinced that most people don’t understand your problem? Being able to lipread can help boost….. (Read more)

The Caversham Heights Society
There has been only one meeting of the Caversham Heights Society since the talk about ‘The work of Launchpad and the homeless in Reading’ at the beginning of October. This was on Wednesday 17th October when Group Captain Paterson, who had only recently retired from the RAF after 26 years of service, talked about ‘100 years of the RAF’. Most of the audience were expecting a historical account of the origins of the….. (Read more)

Planning decisions relating to the Caversham area
Appeals, High-Rise development, St Peters conservation areas and more…. (Read more)

Rebuilding Caversham Bridge
Whilst this month’s picture is not very good photographically, it is interesting. The original print is small – 2 inches by 3 inches – and it is one of three showing preparations for the rebuilding of the bridge, which must have been taken in 1924, and which came my way in November last year. Watching other people work is often fascinating, and in the picture we have four onlookers, one of them a tram driver at the terminus. The Reading Corporation Tramways never did cross either of the…. (Read more)

Mapledurham Playing Fields – a commentary on the Landscape Plan
There was an interesting article in the November issue of Caversham Bridge about the archaeological work being undertaken ‘as part of preparation work required for landscape improvements’ at Mapledurham Playing Fields. It did not give any details of those ‘improvements’. The Landscape Plan was primarily created by Reading Borough Council to offset the impact of the proposed building of the Heights School. Additional objectives were to enhance the site and raise its profile. A major impact of building the…. (Read more)

Wilfred Owen Day: 10th November 2018
WW1 anti-tank bullet inscribed ‘Un Souvenir de la Guerre’… a crucifix fashioned out of bullets… both ironic and iconic, and grasped in the warmth of your hand. Held in Dunsden Church, where Owen was lay preacher for two years, the ‘Wilfred Owen Day’, on 10th November, 2018, fused past and present, art and literature, painting and poetry.  John Bodman, co-founder and co-chair with Jennifer Leach, of the Dunsden Owen Association, welcomed visitors from Ors, near Sambre sur Oise where Owen died on 4th November, 1918. The church was packed to capacity. Jean Eastwood, so instrumental in shaping the Association and charting Owen’s time here, movingly read ‘The Send Off’ with its evocation of country lads, country…. (Read more)

Quakers and peace: then and now
On Tuesday 28th November the Dunsden Owen Association concluded its series of four talks with a session about pacifism in World War 1 and what it is to be a Quaker working for peace today. What better way to end a season marking the centenary of the armistice of a war that was supposed to end all wars? Ruth and Mark Tod are members of the Henley Meeting of the Religious Society of Friends (or Quakers) – a non-judgmental Christian denomination that was founded in the mid-17th century by George Fox. They gave a well-illustrated and compelling talk which was enlivened by…. (Read more)

Rosehill WI
President Arlene Riley welcomed all members (and two visitors) to our November meeting on a fairly warm but windy afternoon. Arlene also asked for volunteers for the ‘Green Challenge’, more details of this will be given at our January meeting. Judith Sharp (Treasurer) said that next year’s subscriptions are now due (at a cost of £42.00) and she will be issuing envelopes in December to collect this. She also told us that calendars for 2019 are available for sale. The birthday buttonholes were then distributed: happy birthday to all concerned. Scrabble club will be on 14th and 28th November respectively. The Book Club will…. (Read more)

Chazey WI
Twenty three members and three guests were welcomed to the November meeting by the Vice President, who took the chair, as our President, who although present, had recently broken her leg. Our speaker for the evening was Mike Payne who gave us a talk on Pinewood Studios which the members enjoyed very much. Tea and cake followed plus a lot of enjoyable chat! Dates were…. (Read more)

Caversham WI
Our late autumn meetings have rushed by and preparations have been made for the last meeting of the year in December. Our duties at the Caversham Court Tea kiosk have finished after…. (Read more)

The changing River Thames
An enthusiastic audience of over 120 people gathered at the CADRA Open Meeting on 6th November to hear a presentation by Terry Marsh, Honorary Fellow at the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology at Wallingford, entitled ‘The River Thames; A study of Change’. Prior to the main speaker, Peter Valance, Chair of Caversham Good Neighbours, told the audience about the campaign to target loneliness. He urged every member of the audience to each do one little thing to combat loneliness and make Caversham a good place in which to live. Terry explained that the River Thames is not a massive river in international terms but has exceptional national and international significance. The river originally drained from North Wales and out into the North Sea. With glaciation, it became a tributary of the Rhine. Today, it rises in the Cotswolds and runs 346 kilometres to its tidal limit. With no waterfalls or rapids, it is very navigable, and so always strategically important. Terry spoke of the…. (Read more)

New hymn book by local writer and lay preacher
Local writer and Lay Preacher Colin Ferguson has just published a book of over 100 hymns to familiar tunes. Colin, who is a member of the Hymn Society, has several books of worship material previously published, but this is the first of two books which cover his work over the years. This one is with familiar tunes and the second will include the music that has been written for him after a career in the probation service Colin says that his worship material has more to do with the human condition and our daily bread rather than holiness. His hymns can be read as well as sung. Some are prayers, some have been the basis for discussion groups. ‘Dare to believe’ sums up the message of the book which at £8.00 including post and packing is a valuable supplement to any church’s worship collection.
Here is an example of one of the…. (Read more)

Pastoral news from Caversham Heights Methodist Church
Congratulations to Peter Bernard, the organist at Caversham Heights Methodist Church, who celebrated his 50th Birthday on Sunday 4th November. Much to his surprise, at the commencement of the service the Minister Jenny Dowding called Peter from behind his curtain so that everyone could sing ‘Happy Birthday’ to him, a birthday cake with lit candles, an organ keyboard and a figure depicting Peter was brought from the vestry by Margaret Ellison who had made the…. (Read more)

To read the full text you need to obtain a copy of the printed paper or subscribe for the on-line version and sign-in to read.