IMG9097
Roving-Crows1
Remebrance-18-2
Snowy-High-Street
Turin-Brakes6
Inbox2
EARLY-MORNING-CANTER-473-
Remebrance-18-3
Scouting-for-Girls7
Torch-2012-05-23093-
1stXV-and-others-with-Mayor
IMG8472
FROSTY-MORNING-
Remebrance-18-1
Gordon-and-Sam
D4S0472
MBORO-HOCKEY-YOUTH-473
George-Wilding-301
MYFC005
Inquisitive-sheep-in-West-Overton
Big-Bull
Animals06
Civic-Service-18
Pete-Gage-Band1
Sunset
White-Horse
Marlborough-under-snow-from-above---Pete-Davies
D4S9273
Duke-of-Kent086
BABRURY-XC-JUMP-473
Inbox-1
Silbury-Sunset---10-06-08-----07
Camilla-MSM
Town-Hall-2011-05-0308-
SBJ
4MI-2013-11-28030
Brooks-Williams1
Bluebells-in-West-Woods-10-05-09------30
Musical-Time-Machine5
Camilla-2012-10-19152
D812668
Christmas-Lights15-11-20097
TdB-Pewsey044
Brazier
YELLOWHAMMER-473-
Tina-May5
Sunset2
Marlborough-2013-04-18StPeters
Mop-Fair---10-10-09------08
Landscape
Hares017cropped
JazzFestSat572
Ogbourne

 

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Notice

Lack of access rights - File '/images/town%20and%20around/2012/VICTORIAN%20BEACON%202_230px.jpg'

Lack of access rights - File '/images/town%20and%20around/2012/BEACON%201897%201_300px.jpg'

Lack of access rights - File '/images/town%20and%20around/2012/brazier%20beacon_150px.jpg'

Lack of access rights - File '/images/town%20and%20around/2012/Albarn.jpg'

Lack of access rights - File '/images/town%20and%20around/2012/Albarn1.jpg'

Lack of access rights - File '/images/town%20and%20around/2012/Albarn2.jpg'

Lack of access rights - File '/images/town%20and%20around/2012/1331293596_small.jpg'

Lack of access rights - File '/images/town%20and%20around/2012/Ashley%20Fripp250px.jpg'

Lack of access rights - File '/images/town%20and%20around/2012/Mai%20Charissa250px.jpg'

Lack of access rights - File '/images/town%20and%20around/2012/James%20Kreiling250px.jpg'

Lack of access rights - File '/images/town%20and%20around/2012/Mishka%20Rushdie%20Momen--250px.jpg'

Lack of access rights - File '/images/town%20and%20around/2012/JP%20Ekins250px.jpg'

Lack of access rights - File '/images/town%20around/town-around.jpg'

Features

Marlborough’s Diamond Jubilee beacon - music, food, a full moon and a big bonfire

What links Marlborough, St Helena, Treetops in Kenya, Gunjur in the Gambia and Hadrian’s Wall?  They are all hosting beacons to mark the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee – but not all of them will be graced by a glimpse of the full moon.

VICTORIAN BEACON 2 230pxVICTORIAN BEACON 2 230pxAnd not all of them will be on the scale of this beacon built for Queen Victoria’s Diamond Jubilee in 1897.

Marlborough’s Diamond Jubilee Beacon will be above Barbury Racecourse on Jubilee holiday Monday, June 4 –under a full moon.  The event will be open from 6.30 pm – the sun will set at 9.20 pm and the beacon will be lit at 10.00 pm.

Marlborough’s beacon – organised by the Marlborough Brandt Group – will include a hog roast, fish and chips, and a bar in the racecourse barn.  There will be music from a trio led by Marlborough’s favourite saxophonist, Mick Allport – with dancing encouraged.

At about 9.30 pm people will stroll up the hill from the barn, along a torch-lit route, to the beacon.  And while the huge bonfire burns on, people can camp close by for the night.  At least one other local beacon will be visible from the hillside – the one on Martinsell Hill.

Admission will be by ticket.  These cover the hog roast supper (with veggie alternative and with sausages for children) and are on sale now from the White Horse Bookshop in Marlborough High Street.  There’s a family deal available.

Access to this event is only from the Marlborough-to-Broad Hinton road.  There is no way through from the Barbury Castle side of the hill.  And as there are horses about – it’s strictly a no firework occasion.

A coach will take people from Marlborough High Street but only by prior arrangement.  This service will only be available if you book seats by close of play on Monday, May 28 by phoning Marlborough Brandt Group on 01672 861116.  And it’ll bring them back again.BEACON 1897 1 300pxBEACON 1897 1 300px

Why a beacon?  Once used to communicate from hilltop to hilltop – especially to warn of an approaching dangers like the Spanish Armada – beacons have become a feature of celebrations, notably royal ones.

Queen Victoria’s Diamond Jubilee in 1897 was the occasion for some major beaconary – as the photo on the right shows some were so big the plate camera could not see the top and show the bonfire builders clearly as well.

Beacons were organised for Queen Elizabeth’s Silver (1977) and Golden (2002) Jubilees.  This year the aim was to have 2,012 beacons lit around the United Kingdom and the Commonwealth.  That target has been left far behind:  over 4,000 beacons are now registered with the Queen’s Pageant Master.

These includbrazier beacon brazier beacon e sixty beacons (one for each year of the Queen’s reign) along Hadrian’s Wall; a beacon on St Helena in the South Atlantic; and one at Treetops in Kenya where Princess Elizabeth was staying in 1952 when she heard about the death of her father, King George VI.  And they’re building a beacon in Gunjur in the Gambia which has had a thirty year link with Marlborough through the Brandt Group.

The chain of beacons will be completed at 10.30 pm in London when the Queen will light the national beacon at the end of the celebratory concert.

Some beacons will be the brazier type (see left) – and this year there is a gas-fired version which is safe enough to install on church towers.  Marlborough’s beacon will be a huge bonfire some eight to ten metres high, designed to burn for a long time.


 

Watch this space for more news about the Marlborough beacon.

Print

That hosepipe ban will stay till Christmas despite all the rain

Despite having well over double the average rainfall during April -- only four dry days were measured in Marlborough -- the River Kennet is still only half its average flow for this time of year.

And although drought orders have been lifted in various parts of the country, the hosepipe ban is likely to continue to Christmas in the Marlborough area.

“The cold wet weather has provided a welcome respite for the beleaguered river, but is not enough to get us out of drought yet,” Charlotte Hitchmough, director of ARK, the River Kennet action group, told Marlborough News Online.

“The groundwater level is rising, and the springs at Avebury and up in the Winterbournes are now flowing, which is great news – however groundwater levels are still well below normal for the time of year.”

“Effectively, we have had below average rainfall of almost two years, so one or two months of above average rain is not enough to get us out of trouble.  But it has made a really positive difference.”

And she added: “The hosepipe ban is likely to stay in place until Christmas, but the rain has moved us further away from other restrictions like water rationing or restrictions on business use, so it's very good news.”

Everyone can help further, she pointed out, by getting a FREE water saving makeover for their home. So far, Barton Park is topping the tables with the most homes in Marlborough signed  up to save water as part of the Care for the Kennet

Campaign.

It's simple:

1. You call 0800 358 6665 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

2. A trained fitter from Climate Energy comes to your house at a time to suit you, and in 20 minutes fits free gadgets to help you use less water and more is left in the river.

3. As well as those good things,  you save money by using less water if you are on a meter, and you save energy by using less hot water.

Thames Water is sponsoring a prize to the school which signs up the most home makeovers, so you can nominate the school of your choice to win.

Print

St Peter’s Church hosts brilliant young pianists in new festival series for Marlborough

 Charles Owen (pictured) is an internationally renowned concert pianist, but his first experience of appearing before an audience was in Marlborough when he was nineteen.   Since then he’s played for Marlborough audiences fourteen times.

Now he’s Professor of Piano at London’s Guildhall School of Music and Drama, and wants to give some his best pupils the chance to share in the Marlborough audience experience.  So, working with Nick Maurice and with David Du Croz of the St Peter’s Trust, a new music feast has been planned.

A unique series of recitals will showcase some of the new generation of virtuoso concert pianists.

From June this year through to June next year five star pupils aged between fifteen and twenty-six and a group of Suzuki students will have the chance to follow in Charles Owen’s steps and play at St Peter’s – on the newly restored piano.  The series will open with a concert by Charles Owen on Sunday, June 17.

Charles Owen is certain that his Marlborough concerts gave a tremendous start to his career.  And he has been able to play programmes here before his big recitals – giving Marlborough audiences sneak previews of his national and international performances.

He has a busy diary: in March he has recitals in Rome, Teramo, Arezzo, Trinity College, Cambridge and the University of Leicester.  At St Peter’s Church in June he will be playing Schumann’s Carnaval and JS Bach’s Goldberg Variations.  You can get a sneak preview at www.charlesowen.net

The concerts will raise funds for two Marlborough-based charities the Marlborough Brandt Group (MBG) and BUILD.  MBG looks after the town’s link with Gunjur in The Gambia and supports development projects there – such as malaria eradication, health education and employment for women.   BUILD is a national organisation encouraging links and partnerships between communities and institutions – from schools to hospitals to local authorities – in the United Kingdom with communities and institutions in other countries.

Five of Charles Owen’s students will be playing in the series:

Ashley FrippAshley FrippAshley Fripp’s recital on Sunday, September 23 will include Bach’s French Suite No 5, Rachmaninov’s Ten Preludes and Brahms’ Vier Klavierstucke.  He has been described by the New York Times as ‘disarmingly precocious’ and has already played at most of the prestigious venues in this country.  Hear Ashley play here

 

 

 

 

Mai Charissa Tran RingroseMai Charissa Tran RingroseMai Charissa Tran Ringrose who was born in 1996, started playing in France aged five and continued studying when her family moved to Thailand.  She now studies at the music conservatoire in Vannes as well as with Charles Owen.  At her recital on Sunday, December 16 she will be playing Beethoven Chopin, Faure and Mendelssohn.

 

 

 

 

James KreilingJames KreilingJames Kreiling will play at St Peter’s Church next year on Sunday, January 27.  He will play Schumann’s Kinderszenen, Ravel’s Miroirs, Debussy ‘s Image, Book Two and Beethoven’s Sonata in C minor, op 111. Apart from being a student of Charles Owen, James has also been taught by John York and Martin Roscoe.
Hear James play here

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mishka Rushdie Momen plays on Sunday, February 17 – her recital includes Beethoven’s Six Bagatelles, a Schubert sonata, Ravel and Chopin.  Mishka was the youngest pupil to be accepted at the Purcell School and is now a postgraduate student at the Guildhall School.  She won the Chopin Prize at the EU piano competition and in 2003 took first prize in the Leschetizky Concerto Competition in New York.
There’s more about Mishka here

 

 

John Paul Ekins’ recital is on Sunday, April 14, 2013. He graduated with First Class Honours from the Royal College of Music in 2009, won a scholarship to study under Charles Owen at the Guildhall School and graduated from there last year with Master of Performance (Distinction.)  He will play Schumann’s Symphonic Etudes, Mozart’s C minor Fantasy and Scriabin’s 4th Piano Sonata.
Check out John Paul’s website here

 

 

 





The series’ finale will bring a group of seven young Suzuki piano students from London to St Peter’s on Sunday, June 30, 2013.  Aged between five and fifteen they will represent the next generation of Britain’s concert pianists.

Tickets for each recital in this major new series will go on sale six weeks before the event at:
*  The White Horse Bookshop (136 High Street, Marlborough, SN8 1HN),
*  Sound Knowledge (22 Hughenden Yard, High Street, Marlborough, SN8 1LT)
or from the Marlborough Brandt Group (01672 861116 or The Dutch Barn, The Upper Office, Elm Tree Park, Manton, SN8 1PS with SAE.)

Tickets are £10 for the Charles Owen concert and £5 for each of the other concerts in the series.   In addition there will be a retiring collection for the two charities.

(Charles Owen photograph is copyright John Batten Photography.)

Print

Britpop star Albarn brings opera to muddy Marlborough field

Damon AlbarnDamon AlbarnA very special performance by one of the world's leading contemporary musicians was given to a small festival crowd in near-freezing conditions in a muddy field outside Marlborough at the weekend.

 OneFest – billed as the UK's first music festival of the year, and the successor to last year's community pub-related HoneyFest – was headlined by Damon Albarn, the maestro behind Britpop champions Blur, cartoon band Gorillaz and more leftfield works like 2007's Oriental pop-opera Monkey, Journey to the West.
 
Before arriving at the festival site, at Rockley on the Marlborough Downs, Albarn was seen in Marlborough shopping for thermal clothing – and with good reason: by the time he took to the stage at 8.30pm the temperature had dipped to a positively chilly five degrees.
 
Albarn was at OneFest to play songs from his new concept opera, Dr Dee, based on the rise and fall of the Elizabethan mathematician, scientist, alchemist, occultist and inspiration for Marlowe's Faustus, which premiered at last year's Manchester International Festival.
 
Populist it wasn't, and anyone up for a warming jump-around to jaunty numbers from the singer's back catalogue was in for a shock.
 
Albarn brought with him a gaggle of seven classical musicians playing 16th century instruments, including the recorder and the lute,  instruments from West Arica, including the kora, and three vocalists, including some wonderfully haunting falsetto from Christopher Robson. 
 
Name-checking nearby Silbury Hill in the sublime Apple Carts, the star himself delivered vocals, guitar and keyboards from behind a harmonium. The first half of the set was performed without introduction or explanation, before he broke into his trademark grin to gently mock the crowd: “Is everyone getting a little cold? Well, you did turn up in a field in April.”
 
He then insisted on playing the lively Watching the Fire That Waltzed Away – the only upbeat song in the set – twice “because it will help us get warm again” and warning the crowd that “that's as much excitement as you'll get – it kind of goes back in on itself now.”
 
The performance was a teaser for the release of the album, which comes out in May, followed by the London premiere with the English National Opera this summer, and was probably the only time an outdoor festival crowd will get to hear the set. 
 
It was a demonstration of how seriously Albarn took the performance that he had brought along his parents and his daughter, whom he welcomed from the stage. 
 
As the set finished – with Albarn playing an old 78 vinyl record on a vintage portable turntable – he thanked the audience and the organisers of the festival, and later took to Twitter to say “OneFest was a brilliant experience, a lovely festival and there for all the right reasons, I'll be back."
 
If he does return, he'll be in good company. Michele Stodart, who performed at HoneyFest last year as one quarter of harmonic pop rock band the Magic Numbers, was back again as a solo artist to perform a reflective folksy set. 
 
And folk rock band Dry the River were back too. Canny Marlborough music lovers will have caught their intimate live set at Azuza back in March, courtesy of record shop Sound Knowledge 
 
And when the five piece played at Honeystreet last year they performed as relative newcomers, having only just released their first single. 
 
This year they took second place on the main stage, having just returned from a 9,000 mile slog across America to promote their debut album, Shallow Bed.
 
“We did it in an RV,” vocalist Peter Liddle told the crowd. “We did all the tourist stuff – Niagara Falls, giant redwoods...”
 
“... but to be honest it doesn't get better than this,” interrupted bassist Scott Miller, who had chosen to maintain his rock god image by wearing a sleeveless vest. “I thought it might make us all feel warmer,” he joked. 
 
Dry the River played a blinding set worthy of a headline slot; an eclectic mix of folk and heavy rock.  The penultimate song, Bible Belt, was – said one Marlborough festival-goer – worth the entry fee alone, while their final song, Lion's Den – also the last track on the album – swelled from a pastoral ballad to an ear-splitting wall of sound which left the crowd baying for more, and looking forward to OneFest 2013.

Print

Expert shows how to reclaim villages back from the roads

How do we tackle speeding traffic and Marlborough villages cut in half by busy roads? This was the question for which over 80 local people wanted an answer at yesterday's seminar (Tuesday, March 13), Traffic Planning for Rural Villages at Kennet Valley Hall, Lockeridge.

Ben Hamilton-Baillie, renowned traffic consultant, looked at how parish councils might reduce speed, handle parking problems and better manage their traffic.


Anyone expecting suggestions of more road signage, more road markings and lots of unfriendly warnings to motorists were in for a surprise; quite the opposite.

Ben showed how removing the usual highway furniture and markings could not only enhance the appearance of a village, create more tourism and improve the viability of pubs but also see a reduction in speed and a more considerate motorist.

With the aid of some revealing real-life pictures and inventive use of Photoshop enhancements, Ben gave rise to excited murmurings by demonstrating how appealing to the subconscious mind could be a more powerful behaviour changer than marking a road with the word 'SLOW'.

He showed how one village had counteracted their large and obvious 30mph sign and command to 'slow' with the continuation of the central white line and a chevron bend warning. “You are telling motorists to drive slowly,” he said, “but then helping them to speed as quickly as possible through the village.”

The key in villages and towns was to give signals that drivers were entering a community, rather than the continuation of the highway. Standard highway signage and markings encourage drivers to feel the village road is their territory. Take this away, create a village space, and ownership is given back to the community and drivers become well behaved guests rather than unthinking road users.

Removing standardised signs forces drivers to think. This makes them drive more slowly and more carefully. Controversially he suggested that: “The only way to make a place safe is to make it dangerous.” In other words, to make it safer for pedestrians, you have to put more hazards in the way of drivers to make them engage their brains and consider the world around them.

Ben was also keen to highlight important features of the community: a paved area outside a pub, a road design that drew the eye to a village pond, a courtesy crossing outside a church. Traffic would still drive over these places but with more respect and awareness of their surroundings. Motorists are funnelled into the pub car park rather than past it, and admire the church rather than it being a building on the side of the road.

Pie in the sky? Ben had plenty of examples both locally and in Europe where this had worked a treat.

West Meon in Hampshire on a busy commuter route had seen traffic speeds fall by three to four miles an hour by removing white lines, changing the design of the road and highlighting village features.

Seven Dials in Convent Garden London, a busy junction of seven roads, saw the transformation of driver behaviour by the replacement of a traditional roundabout with a sundial pillar complete with seating. The junction has became a place where people sit and socialise, successfully encouraging motorists to drive slowly and more considerately.
Amazingly, the reduced speed and relaxed driving also meant traffic flowed more smoothly.

Ben cautioned that villages needed to take responsibility for their own 'design speed'. Increasingly, he said, county council highways will have neither the resources or the knowledge to effectively manage traffic through villages.

And the parish councillors present, unanimously agreed. There was broad and enthusiastic agreement to work with Ben to reclaim our villages back from the roads. Henry Oliver, director of the North Wessex Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, also voiced his support. 

The seminar was a parish and Wiltshire initiative initiative, funded by Marlborough Area Board. For further information, contact community area manager Andrew Jack on 01225 713109 or by email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Print

Remebrance-18-1
MYFC005
Civic-Service-18
Remebrance-18-2
Musical-Time-Machine5
D4S0472
Bluebells-in-West-Woods-10-05-09---30
Gordon-and-Sam
Remebrance-18-3
Camilla-MSM
Roving-Crows1
IMG9097
Marlborough-2013-04-18StPeters
Pete-Gage-Band1
D4S9273
George-Wilding-301
Turin-Brakes6
Torch-2012-05-23093-
TdB-Pewsey044
Silbury-Sunset---10-06-08---07
D812668
1stXV-and-others-with-Mayor
Landscape
Big-Bull
ARKManton-2012-01-1449-
Duke-of-Kent086
IMG8472
Christmas-Lights15-11-20097
SBJ
Tina-May5
Camilla-2012-10-19152
JazzFestSat572
Inquisitive-sheep-in-West-Overton
Mop-Fair---10-10-09---08
Sunset2
Scouting-for-Girls7
4MI-2013-11-28030
Hares017cropped
Animals06
Brazier
Snowy-High-Street
Brooks-Williams1
Sunset
Ogbourne
Town-Hall-2011-05-0308-
Marlborough-under-snow-from-above---Pete-Davies
CivicSelfie1
White-Horse