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Welsh Ponies

Bengad Stud

The Ponies that have been a part of our village.

We will all be familiar with the lovely Bengad ponies that we have walked past, enjoyed as foals, mares, geldings, stallions and generally much admired on the hills in Stinchcombe.

The Bengad Stud

The Bengad Welsh Pony Stud started by Mrs Doris Gadsden in the 1960s began its life at Piers Court. It then moved to Southend Farm and latterly to Wick Lane.  Laura Hutchins and Di Talboys who used to work with Mrs Gadsden, have bred, looked after and loved these ponies for many years.  At their height there were hundreds of ponies on the hills, but now the last 3 youngsters have gone to a new home in order to be shown and brought on as children’s ponies. 

Laura in 2004

The last 3 – Lily (Bengad Lily of the Nile), Poppy (Bengad Desert Poppy), and Lizzie (Bengad Lisianthus) have moved locally to Benhill Performance Ponies.  Below is a picture of these lovely ponies just before they left Stinchcombe – it feels a bit like the end of an incredibly happy, successful era, but the Bengad name and genes will live on both nationally and internationally.

Welsh Ponies
Welsh Ponies at Bengad Stud

Laura also sends a big thank you to all the kind people who sent the ‘Hello Laura’ booklet and photos in May of this year.  She is still getting enormous enjoyment out of it.

Julie Thomas

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possible CANZUK flag

CANZUK – the future?

Pirates or Traders?

Now the UK has sailed out from the EU trading region, one of 22 World Regions and Trading Organizations that I can find, to sail by ourselves in the seas of world Trade we have to consider our future. Are we to sail alone under WTO rules with the EU as Boris suggests? Or join a new fleet?

How many countries sail under WTO rules with the EU?

First let’s answer the question of just, How many countries Trade with the EU under WTO rules alone? This is a difficult one to answer. Depending on who does the calculations, it is either ONE (Mauritania) or Fifty-Eight. Whichever is correct, it’s a very small amount of Trade.

A suggested alternative

Some people suggest we should join another such grouping of nations such as the EFTA (European Free Trade Association). However, a growing number of politicians seem to want, to form a new Trading Group. The CANZUK.

The CANZUK family

CANZUK stands for Canada, Australia, New Zealand and the United Kingdom. Four countries on the opposite ends of the world but with a common language, values, and governmental systems. Also all still belonging to The Commonwealth.

Would it work?

Certainly there are many similarities with these four countries. Economically, culturally, and educationally. Free movement of people to work would benefit everyone. I like the idea, but whatever, expect to hear a lot more about CANZUK in the coming years.

Further reading

Some of the articles I have found regarding CANZUK.


The Comments section has been opened on this Post as an experiment and I would welcome your comments / feedback on the above.

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Edge Radio Logo

Edge Radio

Community Internet Radio for Wotton under Edge and beyond

Started during lockdown Edge Radio from Wotton under Edge is steadily growing in content and popularity. Now with our own Mike Henton on the radio in the Boo and You show it will grow from strength to strength!

How to Listen and Contact

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Computer Keyboard with Accessibility keys

WCAG 2.1

The problems of a web editor

What is the problem

Websites should now meet the web accessibility guidelines WCAG 2.1 set by the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C). Also under the Public Sector Bodies (Websites and Mobile Applications) (No. 2) Accessibility Regulations 2018 in the UK. This causes problems for a part-time web editor like me.

This means that the government websites must abide by certain rules in:

  • layout
  • the way posts are written
  • the design
  • and 14 other areas.

Why is this coming about

Our aging population is forced to rely on the internet for basic access to important information. So, web technologies must evolve to meet the needs of these users to ensure they don’t become alienated from society, cut off from important news, resources, or social network communications.

This is especially important for those with dementia or cognitive impairments related to strokes or brain injuries. It’s also crucial to provide more accessible interfaces for those with intellectual challenges in the form of autism, ADHD, Dyslexia, or memory and reasoning impairments, just to name a few.

We need to change how we view impairments or disabilities. Instead of these defining a person’s health condition, we should view them as a mismatched human interaction.

Doing this helps change the thought process going forward in adopting an inclusive-Web-design-first approach. Also, remember not all impairments are necessarily permanent. This is true if you’ve ever had your arm in a cast or a sling with your dominant hand encumbered. Your ability to access the web via keyboard or even a touch screen can be impaired at any time.

How our website is changing

The good news is that the website is already 92% compliant. However some work will be done on the following:

The Content

At present, the Village Website is written in a “conversation style” with the odd “acerbic comment” thrown in for good measure. Computers do not like sentences using a “passive voice” and I need to use more things like “transition words“. Unfortunately, according to the software, even this page has too much “passive voice”

The Layout

Up to now the website has been laid out for looks only. Although adequate for most readers, people with visual needs or people with artificial intelligence computers or people using a Text to Speech (TTS) web browser, need pages and content laid out in a specific order. Likewise, all pages and pictures must be clearly labelled so computers can find them.

Already done

On the Homepage, a new Wheelchair Icon has been added on the left. This accesses a new Accessibility Menu to help readers with impaired vision. Please let me know if you use it and find it useful. Other “behind the scenes” work has already been done to old pages and posts using new software to correct old mistakes.


I don’t mean to bore you with the above, but I thought that you might be interested. The Parish Council strives to keep the website up to date, informative, legal and compliant.


Scam Phone Calls – A NEW Warning

The Amazon Scam

I had a phone call yesterday from a distressed reader who thought that she had received a phone call from “AMAZON PRIME”. She has an Amazon Alexa on her son’s account and they wanted money for using it. (untrue) She had also on their instructions, used her tablet to visit a “website” and was just about to leave the house to get £4000 from the bank. At this point she did a double take, remembered a recent e-news about scams, and thought to ring me on her mobile……..(just in time)..

I cannot stress how import it is to:

  • DON’T INTERACT IN ANY WAY with any Scam caller on the phone

Once you start to talk to these people they have you….they are cold, vicious, cruel, immoral B***ARDS!

Once you start to talk to them or INTERACT IN ANY WAY….they have you caught like a fish on the line.



I can’t stress that too much so I’ll say it again, You will NEVER RECEIVE A PHONE CALL FROM AMAZON!


  • The tablet was switched off until it can be checked for spyware
  • The Police (tel 101) were informed and an incident number given.
  • The BANK was advised who cancelled her cards and re-issued new ones.

Last year a person in my company was scammed so I have a deep hatred of them. These people pray on peoples goodwill, trust, and honesty. The good values that people have.

More Information

For further reading, I suggest opens in a new windowthis page, and read all about the latest scams especially those related to TRACK and TRACE, and COVID-19


Scam Emails

I’ve had two scam emails in the last 24 hrs, one from the Police and one from the Parish Council!

There really does seem to be an increase at the moment in all types of scams and cons. Probably because everyone is at home, cut off and vulnerable. Obviously the golden rule is don’t believe anyone…it too good to be true!

Also, before you do ANYTHING, speak to a neighbour or a friend.

Here are the Police messages…

Police are aware of a number of different SCAMS which have been taking place across the County.

  1. Amazon Prime Account
    Fraudsters are telephoning residents stating they are wish to refund an amount of money to their Amazon Prime Account and request remote access to their victim’s computer in order to make the refund. This is a scam. Do NOT give any details or allow access to your PC.
  2. HMRC
    Fraudsters are contacting residents saying they are from HMRC and threatening them with arrest or prosecution if they do not pay a sum of money to them which they say is owing. This is a scam. Do NOT give them your bank details or any other personal information (ie National Insurance Number) and do NOT agree to pay.
  3. Courier Fraud
    Fraudsters are contacting residents by telephone and pretending to be either police officers or bank employees. They will invent a story about your bank card being cloned, or about counterfeit currency at their local bank branch. Victims have been tricked into handing over their bank cards or cash, while others were instructed to purchase high value jewellery to give to a “courier”. Should you receive any such calls, try to note the callers telephone number by dialling 1471 immediately after the call. Contact your Bank to ensure everything is OK and let them know what has happened.
  4. O2 / Mobile telecommunications providers
    Fraudsters are informing people that there are issues with their Direct Debit making it impossible to process the latest bill. They suggest that in order to avoid fees, you should update your billing information via the hyperlink provided.
    If you receive a text message like this, do not click on the link(s) or follow any instructions given to you.


NEVER disclose your PIN number or give out your bank details or withdraw cash. Do not engage in conversation and if in any doubt, hang up the telephone.

Many of these fraudsters tend to target the elderly. Please share this information with elderly relatives, neighbours and friends, so that those who are most likely to be targeted are aware.

If you suspect that you may have been the victim of fraud please report this to Action Fraud by calling 0300 123 2040 or visiting opens in a new window

Advice from the Parish Council

The Advertising Standards Authority has a form to report Scam ads. It can be found here:

There are also opens in a new windowPremium rate number scams, opens in a new windowCommon online scams, and a opens in a new windowhost of others…phew

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Jane Lampard – New Website

New Website

One of our local artists has been busy during lockdown and has a opens in a new windownew website….

It’s a bit slow to load, but shows all her current paintings for sale. Also you can subscribe to her mailing list.

Jane Lampard

opens in a new windowJane Lampard has been painting for more than thirty years. Largely self taught but influenced early on in her career by artists such as Aubrey Philips and James Fletcher Watson. Working in both oil and pastel Jane uses layers of paint to build up depth and texture in her highly atmospheric paintings. A need to record the subtleties of our ever changing landscape motivates her to work outside whenever possible. A sense of being in the moment and experiencing fleeting effects of light always more important than a faithful portrayal of detail.

From a farming family herself Jane is particularly drawn towards depicting traditional rural life especially at a time when she feels our whole landscape is under threat of change. The lure of the sea is never far away and whenever possible Jane makes trips to coastal locations from Cornwall to the West coast of Scotland.

Jane has earned a reputation as an inspiring teacher and runs occasional workshops from her studio in Gloucestershire. She has also tutored small groups in Provence, Venice, Morocco and Andalucia and for the last 20 years has held annual solo exhibitions at her home. Her work has been exhibited with the Pastel Society, the Royal West of England Academy, the Society of Women Artists as well as several leading provincial galleries.


2010 Winner of the John Singer Sergeant Award.

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