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The course of a true, cunning. conniving plan never runs smoothly and it is a wonder that this event happened at all. Some weeks ago now, Chairman of the Association of Ross Traders, Richard Mayo of Truffles Delicatessen asked me if it would be possible to get Alan down to the Caroline Symonds Gardens on Saturday, 18th June, the day when the AONB are holding their Georgian Fun Day as part of their 40th anniversary celebrations. 'No problem,' I said and after thanking him, swiftly left the shop as a tear was beginning to form.

The idea was that Alan, whilst covering the event should be totally surprised at an announcement that he was to be presented with A.R.T's Community Spirit Award for his services to the town of Ross-on-Wye. Later, unaware of this event, Alan accepted an invitation from his father for us to go on a photographic tour of some pretty Essex villages on Saturday, 18th June. I hastily reported this to ART member, Carol Lowndes of Ross Old Books and left the matter in her capable hands.

It was then decided that, at a date to be determined, dependent on Alan's well-being I would get him into town under false pretences, so that he could be presented with the award at Ross Market House. Sadly, Alan's condition had deteriorated so much it would have been impossible to get him there.

Determined that Alan should receive this recognition of his hard work it was then decided that the presentation take place at our home and at 12 Noon on Saturday, Ross Town Mayor, Councillor Jo Lane arrived with Richard, David and Sarah Bruce of Pots and Pieces Tea Room, Carol, Ginny Brain from the Ross Gazette and Councillor Caroline Utting.

I made Alan's family aware of the event and they came up to the house, watching with pride as Alan was finally presented with his well deserved award. Well done on your award, Alan I am so proud of you and thank you to all ART members who unanimously chose Alan to be the 2011 recipient of the award and worked so hard to ensure that he received it.

I would also like to thank Mayor Lane for the beautiful flowers and ART for the gorgeous bouquet made up by Like's Florist.

Chairman of ART, Richard Mayo, Bernice Wood, Sarah Wood, Councillor Caroline Utting, Ross Town Mayor, Councillor Jo Lane, Alan Wood, Carol Lowndes,
Sarah Bruce, Tina Jones, Chris Wood and Ginny Brain.


It has to be said that the Ross-on-Wye Acorns Support Group do an amazing job. They are always thinking of new ways to raise money for Acorns Childrens Hospice, a charity which gives care and support to children with life limiting illness as well as supporting their families.

The Ross group raised a tremendous amount for Acorns during their first year by organizing Race Nights, which are very popular, fancy dress cycle rides, sponsored walks, a triathlon and their biggest event, a charity football match between Ross Old Boys and the Aston Villa Veterans, amongst many more. This year the group are busy planning even more money raising events to support this very important charity. On 12th June a 10k run will be taking place, a parachute jump is being looked into and the gang are hoping to raise around £20,000 this year.

Ross Acorns Support Group are always grateful for any support given to help them in their endeavour to raise these funds and go out of their way to support those who have supported them, including the Ross St. John Ambulance, those who have offered venues for their events and On bonfire Night 2010, we were invited to a Race Night at the Mighty 8 Pool Club. Alan had just begun to feel unwell at that time and so could not attend. I went along for a short while and photographed the presentation of certificates and donations to various people who had helped the group out and we received a donation towards the upkeep of

Upon hearing of the seriousness of Alan's illness and in view of all the work Alan had done to try to promote their efforts, the Acorns gang approached Dave and Jacqui Newman of the White Lion Inn, where I worked until recently, to ask if they could hold a Race Afternoon for Alan. Dave and Jacqui have been extremely supportive throughout this difficult time and had no hesitation in agreeing to the event going ahead last Sunday, 15th May.

I called into the White Lion later in the afternoon to thank the guys for what they were trying to do and I was informed that as well as great local support, a visiting rugby side were 'actively encouraged' to take part, which they did, happily.

On Tuesday, Steve 'Ozzy' Bond and his wife, Debbie picked me up from home to take me to the White Lion to be presented with the money they had raised. I was overwhelmed to say the least to be handed £400 'to spend as you and Alan wish' said Gary Davies. The envelope they handed me has this written on the front: 'A token of appreciation and heartfelt thanks to you both for all that you have done. Alan and Tina you are stars. From us all at Acorns Fund Raisers x'

I would like to take this opportunity to say a big thank you to you all for your kindness. It has been a real pleasure covering your events and I hope to cover as many of this year's events as possible. You work hard and we wish you well with your fund raising. I would also like to thank Dave and Jacqui for their support and for allowing the Race Afternoon to take place in their lovely pub and everybody who took part or made a donation. I would also like to thank Ian Phillips for his hard work and for foregoing the chance to go on a rugby tour in Ibiza with Ross RFC. We are deeply touched and truly grateful.

Thank you all.

An amazing group of people presenting me with the proceeds of the Race Afternoon: Debbie Bond, Christine Gardiner, Kevin Gardiner, Garry Davies,
Jeanette Compton, Jackie Davies, Phil Compton, Dave Newman, Jacqui newman and Steve 'Ozzy' Bond at the White Lion Inn on Tuesday evening.


A special concert will be taking place on Saturday, 21st May when campaigners from Ross Baptist Church will be playing host to a Festival of Freedom to help Stop the Traffik, to combat human trafficking and Hands Around the World, who help needy, vulnerable children world wide.

The Festival of Freedom is an opportunity to party in support of human rights and an amazing display of local talent has been organized with the aim of raising money to support the organizations. The organizers have put this event together unaided by professionals and would like to invite the whole community along to celebrate the season and join the fight for freedom.

Today one woman, man or child will be trafficked every minute. They will be deceived, exploited and forced to work in places like factories, houses, farms and brothels. STOP THE TRAFFIK is a global campaign calling for change to prevent the trade of people, prosecute traffickers and protect victims.

HANDS AROUND THE WORLD is a UK-registered charitable trust which seeks to help vulnerable children around the world, encouraging enthusiastic and well prepared short term volunteers to offer practical help, skill sharing, support and friendship.

'Make no mistake about it, trafficking is torture. It must not be allowed to continue - join the fight,' says Emma Thompson, ambassador for Stop the Traffik. Kate Adie, Patron of Hands Around the World says, 'Working side by side with local people to achieve something lasting and worthwhile [is] something money alone can never do.'

The event will begin at 7:30pm where you will be treated to a display of Salsa dancing and performances by a choir, a solo clarinettist and a guitarist / vocalist duo. For further information, please contact Hannah Wrieden on mobile 07816120794 or email


Ross ROADies (Ross Owners And Drivers) are a local group of classic and vintage vehicle enthusiasts and since their formation have held two great road runs to raise money for the Midlands Air Ambulance.

Many people took part in both events, making a spectacular sight as they made their way from the Yew Tree Inn at Peterstow, through beautiful Herefordshire countryside and back again, enjoying a barbecue and raffle afterwards. Organizers of the events, Colin Davies, of Colin's Tyrecare, Eric Lilwall and Alan Williams are truly grateful for the generosity of the participants who helped them to raise a wonderful £1,000 for the Air Ambulance.

Last Saturday evening, Colin, Eric and Alan were delighted to present the charity's representative, Zena Moore with their cheque at the Yew Tree, watched by their wives and Friends. Well done to you all. You've done a marvellous job and long may your good work continue.

Ross ROADies present a cheque for £1,000 to Zena Moore of the Midlands Air Ambulance.

Some of the vehicles which took part in the fund raising road runs.


The New Grove Trust want to help organizations deliver small scale projects that will help stimulate community activity, e.g. a local music festival, staging a drama production, buying a piece of equipment, trips and activities. The list is endless, but they would like to make small one off grants that will ensure that your project can happen.

The Trust are happy to consider grants to help initiate your project. They would also be happy to consider a grant to provide matched funding on a larger project. In order to maximize the help that the trust can give they will make grants up to £2,000, but larger grants will be considered in exceptional cases. You will need to be a properly constituted group and operating in South Herefordshire, The Forest of Dean or Monmouthshire.

Herefordshire Voluntary Action’s Funding Guru, Amelia Quinlan will be on hand at the event to answer any questions that you may have. The event is free but you will need to book a place beforehand by telephoning 01432 343 932 or emailing


Last Saturday, 14th May was the Fortieth Charter Anniversary of the Ross-on-Wye Lions Club and to celebrate, a dinner dance was held for around sixty guests at The Old Court Hotel, Whitchurch. Everyone really enjoyed the evening, with super food, great music and, short speeches.

Besides local people, the guests came from several other Lions Clubs such as, Hereford, Leominster, Chepstow, Forest of Dean and Severn Dean. The visiting VIP was the Lions District Governor Elect, Laurence Pearce, from Porthcawl. Local VIPs were the Ross Mayoress, Councillor Jo Lane with her Consort and the Editor of the Ross Gazette Jo Scrivin accompanied by her father.

Lion Laurence Pearce, the District Governor Elect, brought greetings and best wishes from the International President in America and his board of directors. He thanked the Ross Lions for carrying out Lions work similar to 45,000 other Lions clubs throughout the world; such as helping the elderly, handicapped, young people and the needy in the area. The club also helps by giving donations to the International Lions Foundation for national disasters such as the tsunami and earthquakes. There are always Lions Clubs in the areas devastated by fire, flood and earthquake, and they are usually the first to provide help.

Mayoress, Jo Lane, thanked the Ross Lions for all the help they gave to the needy and especially the young in the HR9 area and the events they put on in the town. Although she doesn't look old enough she said she was working at the Chase Hotel where the Ross Lions held their inauguration in 1971 and she remembers it well. At this point the Ross Lions President presented Councillor Lane with a donation towards her Mayors Charity of the Year.

Another VIP in attendance was Leo Ryan Green, who recently won the Lions International Young Ambassador of the Year Award in the UK. He will be going to Maastricht soon to take part in the European contest. The Ross Lions President, Trevor, thanked him for all he did for the people in the town and presented him with a medal to show his personal appreciation for Ryan's work.

The evening was rounded off with most of the guests enjoying a good old knees up until they went home tired but happy.

Ross Town Mayor, Councillor Jo Lane, receives a cheque for her chosen from Lions President, Trevor Smith.


Our local MP Jesse Norman has announced that he is launching a regular new service of drop-in surgeries next week. This new service comes on top of Jesse's normal weekly advice surgeries. However, unlike advice surgeries, the new surgeries do not need to be booked in advance. Constituents can simply turn up on the day. The first drop-in surgery is on Saturday, 21st May at 10 am in Longtown Village Hall.

Commenting, Jesse said, 'Our existing advice surgeries are helping a lot of local people but there is a huge amount of need, and many people have urgent problems which require immediate attention. So I have taken the decision to launch this new service. "We will be publishing the details of these surgeries every month in the local press, and of course full details will be on my website,'


Wilton Castle hosted an open weekend art exhibition in its grounds on Saturday and paintings by over 20 artists were displayed. Many of the artists were present during the opening hours of the exhibition. A combination of pastel, oil and water-colour paintings of wildlife, landscapes and life studies collectively made a very impressive and enjoyable sight.

Jackie Garner, one of the artists is a wildlife artist based in Gloucestershire. A keen birder, Jackie has featured in a series of BBC radio nature broadcasts with Brian Bailey on his ‘Country Matters’ programme.

Contributors to the Wilton Castle exhibition included: Freida Asvesta, Andrea Bates, David Brindley, Richard Corbett, John Darlison, Doug Eaton, Mary Edwards, Gaynor Funnell, Georgina Funnell, Kay Leverton, Sue Maud, Vanessa Pomeroy, Colin Simmonds, Janice Skeates, Katrina Stevens, Sharon Wyper, David J Williams, Roger Norris-Adams and the Ross Botanical Art Group.

The wonderful art exhibition held at Wilton Castle at the weekend.


Herefordshire Council and the National Trust have entered into a partnership to help continue an important service at Queenswood Country Park. The National Trust is to take over the Countryside Visitor Centre in early July on an initial three -year lease and will assist the Council's Parks, Countryside & Leisure Development Service with the provision of important visitor support services. This includes providing visitors with information about the site, along with the provision of leaflets and trail guides and the Electric Mobility Vehicle hire service, as well as a small Tourist Information Point.

The Trust will also use the centre as a gateway to National Trust properties in the county, to highlight the charity's important work, recruit new members, and sell a range of quality goods through the retail outlet, including local produce. Rob Hemblade, Parks, Countryside & Leisure Development Manager for Herefordshire Council said, 'We're very excited to be entering into this new partnership with the National Trust and we believe that it will be very beneficial to the Country Park and Arboretum and its 500,000 visitors per year.'

The National Trust looks after a range of special places in Herefordshire, including three historic properties; Berrington Hall, Brockhampton Estate and Croft Castle; a riverside garden at The Weir; and over 3,000 hectares of countryside.

David Bailey, National Trust General Manager for Herefordshire said, 'We're delighted to be working with Herefordshire Council to provide these important services for visitors to Queenswood, and to have the opportunity to raise the profile of our work and encourage visitors to explore their local National Trust properties. We know that many people from Herefordshire enjoy visiting the special places that we care for across the County, but we want to reach out to even more local residents.'

Queenswood is Herefordshire's only country park and has free car parking, toilets and the Queenswood Café. There are three way marked trails and easy access paths so that everyone can enjoy the park as well as a picnic and barbecue area, a popular adventure play area and a free 'seaside style' telescope at the viewpoint.

Queenswood Country Park is on the A49 between Hereford and Leominster. Follow the brown signs at the top of Dinmore Hill. Alternatively the 492 bus service departs Hereford and Leominster at regular intervals throughout the day.


Symonds Yat Rock will once again be echoing to the sounds of a Roman invasion on Sunday, 22nd May, when Roman soldiers and iron age warriors meet again on the ancient hill fort site.

The Iron Age Rampage,will show how the area was in a period of change and conflict in AD 49, six years after the Roman invasion. Roman and Iron Age re-enactors Vicus and Legion V111 Avgvista will be holding living history demonstrations about the weaponry of Roman Britain in a time when the struggle to subdue the neighbouring Silurian tribe and their leader, the infamous British chieftain Caractacus, was at it's peak.

The living history demonstrations will also feature Iron Age and Roman food, clothing, weaving, dyeing and mosaics as well as children's activities and stories. The event will also feature an Archaeology Road Show, where you can bring your own archaeological artefacts for the experts to identify and discover how archaeological recording is carried out..

The event is the second of those being held by the Wye Valley AONB to celebrate 40 years since the area's designation as an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB). It will also be marking the end of the Heritage Lottery Funded partnership project, Overlooking the Wye, which will mark the successful culmination of work on forty sites throughout the Wye Valley and will reflect its four themes of hidden industry, viewpoints, river connections and hill forts.

The family event is free but there will be a car parking charge in operation. For further information please log onto the website or contact information officer Nikki Moore by emailing or phoning 01600710846.

The Iron Age Rampage event has been organized by the Wye Valley Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) Unit and Overlooking the Wye Landscape Partnership Scheme, in partnership with the Forestry Commission.

The Roman get army ready to do battle.



Herefordshire Council is planning to run a foundation course for interpreters next month as the county faces more demand for skilled people who are able to interpret in a range of languages.

Over the last two years, the council has successfully trained around 70 people to interpret for the Herefordshire Language Network. Languages in demand at the moment are Hungarian, Arabic, Urdu, Bengali, Tamil, Korean, Japanese and Pashto and British Sign Language. The training on offer is a two day unaccredited introduction to interpreting techniques, and will be run by an experienced and qualified tutor from the Workers' Educational Association. It is free of charge to learners as it is funded through the MIRA project (Migration and Integration in Rural Areas).

Harriet Yellin of Herefordshire Council said, 'The course will help us boost the number of local linguists on the Herefordshire Language Network which currently provides language services to organizations throughout the county and beyond. As our population continues to change, it is important that we are able to help families whose first language isn't English, to be able to access essential services. Many of those who have completed the course in the past have gone on to do further training so that they can work as an interpreting professional.'

For further information and an application form please visit The closing date for applications is 20th May.


Local MP Jesse Norman has congratulated Action for Children on its ten year anniversary. The national charity opened its doors in Herefordshire in 2001, and has worked since then with hundreds of local children and families suffering from mental illness, poor health, drug and alcohol problems and long term unemployment. To mark the anniversary, the charity has just moved into new offices on Blackfriars Street in Hereford, where Jesse cut a celebration cake with Helen Phillips of Action for Children and Kathy O'Mahony of Herefordshire Council.

Jesse said, 'I am delighted that Action for Children have now been working in Herefordshire for ten years. We have many young people and families in Herefordshire who need their continued support.'

Jesse cuts the celebratory cake with Heln Phillips and Kathy O'Mahoney.


Herefordshire Council is urging more local food suppliers to open their doors and sell directly to the public in a drive to boost the local economy. To raise the profile of the local food industry and encourage more people to enjoy some of the wonderful food grown and produced in our county, the council is hosting a week long celebration of the best local produce.

Planned to take place in August 2011, it is hoped to involve as many local food businesses as possible in a range of events and activities which will be open to the public. The council is urging local businesses to get involved and help plan the week. During the celebratory event, the council will publish a guide book and map of all the participating farms and food businesses which visitors and residents can use to find their way to all the small producers and out-of-the-way locations in the county.

'We are calling the week 'Herefordshire Food Week' and the aim is to encourage the county's food producers to open their doors to visitors and residents during the summer,' explained co-ordinator, Andy Dawson. 'We want them to show off what they are doing and get visitors interested in the best of what Herefordshire has to offer.'

To help get the scheme off the ground, the council is urging local food suppliers to get involved by ringing 01432 383064.

18th May 2011


Daniel Netley.

A man from Ross-on-Wye has been given a conviction related antisocial behaviour order (CRASBO) following a series of offences committed around the town.

Daniel Netley, aged 20 of Purland, Ross-on-Wye, was served with his CRASBO at Hereford Magistrates' Court on Wednesday, 11th May. The order applies for two years and expires on 11th May 2013. The conditions of the order are that Netley is:

· Not to enter or loiter outside any licensed premise between 7pm and 7am on Fridays, Saturdays or Sundays within Ross town centre.
· Not to be in possession of an open vessel of alcohol, in a public place, within the county of Herefordshire.
· Not to be found drunk in a public place in Ross town centre.

PC Paul Challenger of the Ross-on-Wye Local Policing Team said, 'Daniel Netley has been a persistent nuisance in recent months and he needs to realize his behaviour has consequences. In the last six months he has been convicted of a string of offences, which include a number of disorder related convictions, criminal damage and using threatening words or behaviour to cause harassment or alarm. Most seriously, he also assaulted a member of staff at a local pub and then a police officer.

All of these were alcohol related and we have taken the action of getting a CRASBO served on Netley that tackles his drinking and antisocial behaviour. I would ask anyone who sees him breaching his CRASBO by drinking or being drunk in public in Ross, to contact us straight away so we can take action.'

PC Challenger and the Ross-on-Wye Local Policing Team can be contacted via the police non-emergency number, 0300 333 3000.


Herefordshire Council, through its contracting partner Amey, is to start work on repairing a damaged retaining wall on Lugwardine Bridge along the A438. The works, which will involve taking down the damaged existing stone retaining wall and rebuilding it, are to start on Monday, 23rd May and should be completed in two to three weeks. Traffic lights will be in operation during the duration of the works and motorists are advised to take alternative routes at busy times.

Amey wishes to apologize for any disruption that may be caused by these essential works.

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