Merry Harriers Reopens on Saturday

Lock-down restrictions across the UK will be further relaxed this Saturday, July 4th, allowing for the reopening of pubs and restaurants as long as safety measures are in place and enforced.

In Hambledon, The Merry Harriers will reopen at midday, just over 100 days since it was required to close.

Behind the scenes, general manager Jake Andreou has been working hard to ensure the pub can comply with detailed government guidelines to protect staff, locals and staying guests from the risk of contracting the Covid-19 virus.

A member of staff will meet and greet customers arriving at the main entrance. The new measures will be explained, any questions answered, and a contact taken for individuals or for one member if in a small group. Drinks can be ordered at the bar, which has a Perspex screen installed, and will be delivered to you at a table. Payment will be by card.

A one-way system will be in place and customers will enter and leave by different doors. Tables and benches – inside and in the garden areas – have been situated to ensure correct social distancing can be maintained. A marquee has been erected on the boules court and this may also have a bar for outside drinkers.

Continue reading

Volunteers Restore Hambledon Bridleway

Many people have been put off walking the footpath from the Merry Harriers towards Enton and Witley because of its boggy condition. All that has changed, thanks to the efforts of volunteers, as Mike Parry explains.

The Old Road to Witley – Bridleway 186

This will be known to most of us as the path alongside the Merry Harriers to Buss’s Common and beyond and was many years ago an established highway between Hambledon and Witley.

More recently it has been even better known for its very wet condition as for most of the year it has only been passable on foot if wearing waterproof boots. The photograph below was taken in March last year.

The bridleway was last repaired in 2002 by Surrey County Council and has deteriorated through use and flooding problems since then.

In October 2018 the Parish Council asked for some help from SCC to at least evaluate the possible cost of repairs and a sketch was prepared by the Parish Council with a suggested improvement scheme. Due to a lack of funding at that time there was no further progress until March 2019. Continue reading

SUNDAY REFLECTION

Kate Walford, the Head Teacher of Hambledon Nursery School, contributed the Sunday Reflection this week.

As I reflect upon the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on Hambledon Nursery School I would have to say that, overriding all else, is the fact that for the first time in its history it had to close, from Monday 23rd March to Friday 29th May 2020.

If I had tried to imagine this at the beginning of the year, it would have been unthinkable. But, as the worldwide Covid-19 crisis unfolded, it became apparent that the nursery would not escape the impact of the virus and it closed under lock-down.

We did not have children of key workers or vulnerable children for whom the nursery was required to remain open, so we entered what was a very strange and unique period of time.

A small team, comprising of myself as head teacher and the school secretary, Stephanie Campbell, worked behind the scenes to keep things ‘ticking along’. Setting foot into the nursery while it was closed to children, staff and parents was an eerie and at times deeply saddening experience. However, like so many community organisations in the village, we adapted to the unprecedented times that we found ourselves in.

Continue reading

Vann Garden – Additional Opening

The garden at Vann will be open to visitors on Wednesdays and Thursdays throughout the rest of June, beginning from today.

Vann is the home of the Caroe family. Many in Hambledon are still greatly saddened by the death of Mary Caroe from Covid-19. Mary, a loved and respected village resident and community volunteer, gave much of her time to the magnificent property, which includes a water garden created by the noted designer Gertrude Jekyll in 1911.

Vann, Hambledon, Surrey; garden originally designed by Gertrude Jekyll

The 5-acre garden, in beautiful countryside in Vann Lane, Hambledon, GU8 4EF, is open from 10am to 4pm, Wednesdays and Thursdays, until at least the end of this month. Tickets cost £10, payable in cash on the day, and visitors will receive a Vann booklet and postcards.

The garden is looking splendid, benefiting from a great deal of hard work and the warm late spring/early summer weather. Visitors can wander around at their leisure, observing social distancing.

Vann has been open on selected days for many years under the National Gardens Scheme. Mary was an active member of the Surrey Gardens Trust, and a member of its Council since its inception in 1991.

Further details of Vann garden and its Arts and Crafts movement house can be found at www.vanngarden.co.uk

Our photograph shows Vann in its Spring finery. Picture credit: Andrew Lawson

Surrey Hills AONB – Please stay away

The Surrey Hills Partnership is asking people NOT to visit the many public facilities and car parks at recognised beauty spots within the Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, and instead to access countryside close to where we live.

Well-known visitor attractions such as Frensham Ponds, Box Hill and Newlands Corner have seen a massive increase in visitors in the recent hot weather following a relaxing of lockdown restrictions.

This has resulted in a concern that social distancing is not being properly observed and there have been additional issues such as congestion, illegal parking, litter and fire risk.

Please click here for further information: https://www.surreyhills.org/dont-travel-plea-from-the-surrey-hills/

 

Hambledon Nursery School Phased Re-opening – Monday June 1st.

A semblance of normality returned to Hambledon today with the reopening of the village nursery school. David Evans, chair of the Trustees, explains the latest developments.

Hambledon Nursery School has been working towards a phased re-opening from June 1st, in line with government advice. The issues this raises for all involved are challenging, as the following article explains.

Since late March, for the first time in its history, Hambledon Nursery School has been closed. Usually bustling with the play and laughter of small children, for the past two months the school has been strangely empty and quiet.

But although the children have been at home, a core group has been keeping the heart of the school beating. Outreach to parents coping for the first time with home-schooling, with a steady flow of ideas and links and personal support. Videos from teaching staff letting the children know how much they are missed, and looking forward to when they return. Liaison between members of staff, keeping everyone in the loop over a period when every news report seems to say something different, and the government’s advice and plans have taken time to take shape. Physically looking after the fabric of the school itself. And behind the scenes, administrative and financial activity: applying for and administering the furlough schemes, monitoring our financial health, and working out what in different scenarios the future might look like.

But now, at last, it looks like we have a route back to normality.

Continue reading

FIRE RISK ON HAMBLEDON COMMON

Young people are urged not to light fires or have barbecues on Hambledon and Buss’s Common, both of which are tinder dry.

Hambledon Parish Council has been alerted to gatherings of youngsters sharing barbecues. There is evidence of people sleeping out and camping on the commons and the Fire Brigade has expressed concern.

As a parent, please ensure your young family members are not lighting fires of any kind when they are out-and-about meeting friends. Even a barbecue in the sand pit is not safe, as sparks could set heather ablaze.

A fire would not only be extremely destructive to wildlife and habitats, it would endanger surrounding houses.

Notices have been put up warning of the risk. If you see anyone having a barbecue please ask them to stop. During current Covid-19 restrictions, it is especially important not to expose our emergency services to avoidable risk.

Thank you. Stewart Payne, emergencies coordinator, Hambledon Parish Council. 07831 393561

Sunday Reflection

Yet another good news story for Hambledon:  as was reported at the start of the week, the raffle held by the locally-based Village Spirit Collective to raise money for the Community Foundation for Surrey’s Coronavirus Response Fund achieved a remarkable £1,108.   This more than exceeded expectations – the Collective’s Ian and Alpa Cox were hoping that they might make around £200!

Continue reading