WI: The next WI meeting is on the Thursday 7th May at 2.30pm in the Village Hall. This will be the annual Resolutions Meeting and ‘The Fun Flower and Produce Show’ will also take place when members compete against each other in light-hearted competition. Classes are somewhat restricted this year as Hermon Cottage is being used as a Polling Station and so space for exhibits in the hall is limited. Would all WI members please remember to bring their entries? New members and visitors are always welcome.

VE Day Dinner: The fund-raising ‘VE Day Dinner’ is being held on Saturday 9th May. This will be a three course meal with a menu of the time, held in the Village Hall at 7.30pm. VE Day dress is optional. There are some tickets still available priced £10 each which can only be booked through Sandra Shoobridge on 01424 774708. So hurry up and reserve your places for what promises to be a nostalgic and fun evening!

Catsfield Parish Council: The AGM of the Catsfield Parish Council was well attended last Monday evening and it was good to see that so many people were interested in the past and future well-being of the village. Chairman John Overall, supported by the Clerk to the Council, Carol Hodgson, welcomed everyone and led us through the agenda. In his report, John expressed regret and thanks to two outgoing Councillors, Beryl Bodey and Jan Auer and asked for applications from anyone interested in filling their places on the Council to contact Carol. His report went on to include information on potholes, parking concerns and the very serious problem of motorists ignoring the speed limit and tearing through the village, especially past the school. It is hoped to get the 30mph limit extended back to beyond the church, thus giving drivers time to slow down before they reach the school. Other topics included the Village Hall car park, proposed property development in Catsfield and improvements to the playing field fencing and the car parking area outside the gates.

Reports were given by representatives of the many organisations and societies who are active in this village and, because some were unable to attend the meeting, the Chairman read their reports for them. The impressive list included the Football, Cricket and Stoolball clubs, WI, the Village School, the Social Club, PCSO (police), the History Group, Pre-School, the Village Hall Committee, the Horticultural Society and the Church. There were no reports from the CADS, the Art Group or the Book Club, who also help to make this such a vibrant and active community.

County Councillor Kathryn Field and District Councillor Angharad Davies, who had arrived late from attending an earlier Parish Council meeting in neighbouring Ashburnham, then presented their reports and questions were invited from the floor. The meeting closed with drinks and light refreshments and the opportunity to meet with the councillors and representatives of local organisations.

May Day: What happy thoughts and memories that conjures up in my mind and I’m sure in those of most of my generation. Maypole dancing - girls and boys skipping around clutching the colourful ribbons, weaving intricate patterns around the pole and then, hopefully untangling them again afterwards. The crowning of the May Queen by the Queen from the previous year, watched by her Maids of Honour and all wearing long white dresses and flowered garlands in their hair. Oh, how we girls longed to be in their shoes! The nearest I ever got to that exalted position was to be a five year old petal scatterer, walking in front of that awesome procession (the oldest of whom was at the most ten years old but they all seemed so big and very important) Vases filled with flowers of hawthorn and other early shrubs all scenting the air, which was filled with the sound of traditional country music played on an accordion and fiddle, as we danced around the playground attempting ‘The Dashing White Sergeant’ and ‘Roger de Coverley’. It’s lovely to know that these traditions are being revived and hopefully, today’s youngsters will also remember them as a special childhood event to be treasured.