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Gossip around the village pump.


penarth lifeboat

RNLI 200

Join us for 2024 – see how far we’ve come together and where we’re heading

This year marks the 200th anniversary of the RNLI founded on March 4th 1824 by Sir William Hillary.

The Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) has been saving lives at sea since it was founded in 1824 and, since then, its lifeboat crews and lifeguards have rescued over 144,000 people. 

From triumphs to tragedies; from oar-powered vessels to the technology-packed boats used today; from introducing the first lifeboats on the River Thames to rolling-out a UK beach lifeguard service; from running the UK’s biggest ever drowning prevention campaign to working with others to save lives overseas – the RNLI has a remarkable 200-year story. 

Today, the charity operates 238 lifeboat stations and has seasonal lifeguards on over 240 beaches around the UK and Ireland. It designs and builds its own lifeboats and runs domestic and international water safety programmes.

While developments over the course of 200 years have changed how the charity saves lives, some things remain the same. Volunteers have given time and commitment over the past two centuries, as they continue to do today. And charitable donations still power the RNLI’s lifesaving.


Poole Lifeboat, Andrew Hawkes

RNLI Dursley Branch

The RNLI Dursley Branch started a mere 60 odd years ago and still remains pretty active. This year we have already organised a fund-raising Curry Evening and have the following events planned:

  • Sunday April 7th. – 5 Peaks Walk, a sponsored local walk. (more info:
  • Sunday May 19th. – Cream Tea, Uley Playing field Pavillion
  • Friday July 19th – Our major fund raiser, an Evening at Swinhay with Dinner, a short Talk, Dancing and a Promises Auction
    ( for further details contact Russ Holloway :
  • Sunday 1st Sept. – Tortworth Lake Walk
  • Saturday 16th Nov. – Barn Dance, Coaley Village Hall

RHLI Wotton Branch

The RNLI (Wotton-under-Edge & Thornbury District Branch) will be marking this anniversary with a special Guest Speaker Evening on Thursday 14th March.

The illustrated talk will cover the 200-year history of the RNLI and the “guest” speaker will be John Barnett – the Branch Chairman and RNLI Community Presenter. This talk is an expansion of one given previously to a U3A group studying 19th Century history – literally brought up to date.

This year, the talk will be held in a lecture theatre at the Renishaw plc, New Mills site and will start at 8.00pm (doors open
at 7.30pm). Those coming should enter the site directly from the roundabout – not at the front entrance.

As with previous Guest Speaker Evenings, attendance will be by ticket (priced £10) – either purchased in advance or reserved to be paid for on the night. Tickets can be purchased from the Coventy Building Society or from the Cotswold Book Room (both in Long Street, W-u-E).

Alternatively, tickets can be obtained by contacting:

  • the Branch via e-mail:
  • John Barnett at

John Barnett
Chairman – RNLI Wotton-under-Edge & Thornbury District Branch

Find other RNLI 200 events.

Village Hall 14 Feb 2004

Village Hall improvements update

At the public consultations held at the Village Hall in November 2022 a small number of concerns were raised about the proposed improvement project. One concern was how poor the acoustics are and they were not part of the proposed improvements.

The Trustees had, prior to the meetings been discussing and prioritising the Hall needs. There were originally 6 needs identified. Due to potential costs and increasing an already large expensive project it was decided to make the other 5 needs our main priority and incorporate them into One project. The acoustics was therefore dropped from this improvement project.

Having listened to the concerns changes were made and the Trustees made “The acoustics” the highest priority and it became ‘phase 1’. We are very pleased to say that ‘The Acoustics’ was completed today and anyone who visits the main Hall will certainly notice a huge improvement.

Village Hall Acoustics

We are still fundraising with the Ladies Fashion Show coming up shortly and Two further events planned.

All the money raised will be split with other Village organisations. This I believe is a great idea to be working with other needy organisations. We are discussing a possible Summer event making use of our much improved amenity area with enlarged patio.

The recent Comedy Evening fundraiser was a great success with over 100 attending and some great feedback, as a result the Committee are considering repeating it next February with a few minor ‘tweaks’ any suggestions gladly received.

If you have any suggestions for fundraising please contact any of the Committee who’s details are on the website 

We still need to raise a very large amount to be able to finish the whole project and this is likely to take many years. Don’t forget the Tesco Blue Disc scheme which runs until the end of March. 

The Hall belongs to the residents of Stinchcombe held in Trust by the Parish Council and managed by a Committee of dedicated Trustees, all you support is valued and very much appreciated.

Finally the Hall is 70 years old next month and we aim to keep it in good order and improved for future generations to enjoy so please support us in any way you can.

Charlie Oakhill
(Chairman Stinchcombe Village Hall)

Village Hall Acoustics

Tesco Token

Tesco Blue Discs

Tesco Community Grant Scheme and the Village Hall

The Village Hall Committee are pleased to announce that we have been approved for the Tesco ‘Blue Disc’ Community Grant scheme.

From from mid January until the end of March, The two Tesco stores taking part are:

  • Cam
  • Wootton-under-Edge

How it works

When customers receive a a blue token. You can vote for your favourite Community scheme out of 3 choices. They will all receive a grant. There are 3 grants available. The lowest number of discs will get £500, the next will receive £1,000, and the highest £1,500.

Please support your Village Hall

When you are Shopping in Tesco, Please ask for Blue discs if you are not given any. Don’t forget to help support our Village Hall project by putting them in the appropriate receptacle.

About Tesco Community Grants

The Tesco Community Grants scheme supports thousands of local community projects and good causes across the UK every year. The scheme is open to applications from community groups, charities, and not-for-profit organizations wanting to make a difference in their local area.

Since the program launched in 2016, Tesco Community Grants has awarded £101,881,339 in grant funding to 50,880 community projects, with grant awards decided by 738,402,011 votes cast by Tesco customers in stores across the UK.

Tesco Blue Token
Tesco Blue Token

Road Safety Week

Road Safety Week 19th Nov 2023

We’re taking part in Road Safety Week

Road Safety Week

Stinchcombe Speed Watch is taking part in Road Safety Week, organised by the road safety charity, Brake.  The objective this year is to start a national conversation about speed.


Here are five good reasons:

  1. On average five people die on British roads every day
  2. Inappropriate speed contributes to around 39% of crashes that result in death or serious injury, of which there were 29,742 in Great Britain in 2022
  3. Every 1mph increase in speed increases crash frequency by 5%
  4. The risk of a pedestrian being killed increases slowly up to impact speeds of around 30 mph but at speeds of 30 – 40mph becomes 3.5 to 5.5 times more likely
  5. About half of pedestrian fatalities occur at impact speeds of 30 mph or below.

Learn more from

And turning the spotlight on Gloucestershire …

Our statistics for people killed or seriously injured on the roads remain poor.  This was tragically brought home to us in Stinchcombe by the fatal crash on Taits Hill, the first anniversary of which passed recently.

The fact is we’re lagging behind other local authorities.  Our figures increased in 2022 whereas the best-performing local authority (Staffordshire) saw a 52% reduction.



So please join in the conversation with us …

There are various ways to do that:

  1. Comment at the end of this article on the Parish website. 
  2. Attend our Stopping Distances* event at the Village Hall at 3pm on Sunday 19th November to take part in a memorable demonstration and share themed biscuits and cakes.
  3. Come and talk if you see our stand at Leaf & Ground.
  4. Respond to our posts on Stinchcombe Social or make your own.
  5. If you know who we are you can even buttonhole us in the street.

* Brake research found that 71% of drivers don’t know what distance to keep from a vehicle in front of them.

Driving Habits

It’s a very rare person who never drives too fast and we’re not going to be judging anyone.  We just want to hear what you think.  Why and where do we speed?  What would stop us?  What do we think about others speeding? Do we know the facts about speed and its potential consequences? Does our vehicle make it all too easy to speed? Are we using any features it has to help us keep to appropriate speeds?

The Speed Watch Team: Trudy Chinn, Don Cribb, John Delafield, Kath Hudson, Joan Jelfs, Marion Twentyman and Ava Walker

The Quiz

On that last note, let’s kick off the campaign with a short quiz.  It will also be available on Stinchcombe Social, along with other campaign posts.  You’ll find some of the answers in this article and we’ll publish them all on Saturday 25 th November.  

1. How many people die on UK roads every day?

a) 2

b) 3

c) 4

d) 5

2. Each year, how many fatal crashes involve someone driving too fast?

a) 1 in 3

b) 1 in 4

c) 1 in 5

d) 1 in 6

3. Which roads have the most speeding cars?

a) Urban (30 mph limit)

b) Motorway (70 mph limit)

c) Rural (60 mph limit)

4. What is the total stopping distance at 30 mph? (Average car length is 4 metres)

a) 9 m (2.25 car lengths)

b) 12 m (3 car lengths)

c) 18 m (4.5 car lengths)

d) 23 m (5.75 car lengths)

5. What is the total stopping distance at 20 mph? (Average car length is 4 metres)

a) 6 m (1.5 car length)

b) 9 m (2.25 car lengths)

c) 12 m (3 car lengths)

d) 15 m (3.75 car lengths)

6. How many times more likely is a crash at 30 mph likely to cause severe injury than a crash at

20 mph?

a) The same

b) Twice as likely

c) Three times as likely

7. How many drivers don’t know what distance to keep from a vehicle in front of them?

a) 37%

b) 53%

c) 71%

d) 90%


Stinchcombe Scratch Choir

Or, Our Home-Grown Choir for our Candlelight Service at Christmas

This year’s Carols by Candlelight service at St. Cyr’s will be on Sunday, December 17th at 5 p.m. It would be wonderful if you were able to join our scratch choir for the occasion. Our friend Miriam Ayling has kindly agreed to lead the choir. She led us a couple of years ago and did a fabulous job.

Scratch Choir

As in previous years, we will have 4 practices across the fortnight before the service. These will be on different evenings so that folk with other commitments can hopefully attend at least one practice.

The practice dates are:

  • Wednesday 6th
  • Thursday 7th
  • Tuesday 12th
  • Wednesday 13th

All Practices start at 6.30pm

If there is anyone in the village who would like to join us, please let me know. It wouldn’t be Christmas in Stinchcombe without our scratch choir so I hope that you are able to join us.

With best wishes



Can we bring back Swifts to Stinchombe

Can we bring swifts back to Stinchcombe?

I’ve enjoyed watching swifts by the gravel pits at Frampton-on-Severn, but have never seen any in Stinchcombe.  Has anyone else seen any here in recent years?

A species in decline

These amazing birds arrive in the UK in April/May and return to Africa in August.  They never land except to nest.  In fact, the young birds spend their first three years on the wing. Sadly, their numbers are in decline – about 60% down in the last 25 years.  This is mainly due to the loss of suitable nest sites. As old buildings are refurbished, the spaces under the roof tiles that they like to use are often made inaccessible.  The decline in insect populations can’t be helping either as this is the swifts’ only food.

All is not lost

District Councillor Catherine Braun told me about the Nibley Swifts project   They have only been going since 2021, but this summer North Nibley residents saw flocks of 30 or more of these lovely birds.  Stroud also has a very active Facebook group and there are many others.

Installing swift boxes doesn’t cost a lot and is working in North Nibley.  Another option is swift nesting bricks These can be very inconspicuous, however, the swifts apparently find them.

Swift Nesting Brick

There is evidence that swifts can be drawn to new nest sites by broadcasting recordings of swift calls.   Various products are on the market.

A Stinchcombe Swift Project?

How wonderful it would be to attract swifts back to Stinchcombe.  Would anyone like to join me in setting up a project?  The first step might be to find out more from existing local groups.

Kath Hudson

Stinchcombe Village Hall Logo

Village Hall Update October 2023

AGM and Vacancies

This years Village Hall AGM will be on Tuesday 14th November from 7:30pm, all residents from Stinchcombe and surrounding Parishes are very welcome to attend.

If you would like to join the Committee this is a good first meeting to ask questions.

We also require a Treasurer too as our long-standing Treasurer, Sarah Tweed is standing down to spend more time travelling. If you are good with spreadsheets (not too many) you should contact any of the Committee, contact details are here or email

Improvement Project and Fundraising

It is an exciting time with the improvement project gathering momentum. There are also some great new and different fundraising events planned. Remember the Hall belongs to the residents of Stinchcombe and as a committee member you will have a say in its management and its future. It would be even better if some of the younger newer residents were to step up as you are the future in Stinchcombe and we want you to have your say! We meet about 8 times a year in the evening for around 90 minutes.

Volunteers needed

We have a few people who volunteer to help from time to time, but we could do with a couple more, this is to help set up events (putting out tables and Chairs, helping with the Bar and catering, erecting the Marquee etc…) As above please get in contact .

Charlie Oakhill (Chairman)

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