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Archive News - December 2012

The following articles appeared on the site in December 2012

We are the Pride of Norfolk Community of the Year



Hethersett has been named Pride of Norfolk Community of the Year for 2012 for villages and towns with populations of over 5000. The award recognises our outstanding community spirit and the efforts made by so many people and groups to ensure that there is something for everyone. To read about the presentation click here. To read our submission to the judges click here and to read about our community click here. The photograph above shows children from the village celebrating the award at the annual Hethersett Christmas Fair held at the Methodist Church on November 30th.  To read the story from the Eastern Daily Press Newspaper click here.


Village Praised for "Can Do" Attitude - Hethersett has been praised for its can do attitude in a special feature in the Eastern Daily Press newspaper on winners of Pride in Norfolk Community of the Year (see above). You can read the article by clicking here.


Honour for Duncan - Hethersett stalwart Duncan Pigg has been awarded a British Empire Medal (BEM) in the New Year's Honours list. Duncan, who is 86, says in an article in the Eastern Daily Press newspaper that "Hethersett has been my life since I was 13." His award is for services to the community which has included producing and writing the annual village pantomime for 40 years, during which time over £80,000 was raised for various charities. Duncan is also a leading light in Hethersett musical circles, President of Hethersett and Tas Valley Cricket Club, Reader Emeritus for Hethersett Parish Church (where he has been a licensed reader for 56 years) and choirmaster for 35 years and a former governor of Hethersett High School and Hethersett Woodside Infants and Nursery School. We send out heartiest congratulations to Duncan on a well deserved honour. Duncan and his wife Jenny are photographed opposite with one of the official London 2012 Olympic torches which visited the village in July

Lit Up at Christmas - Over the past 18 years Hethersett couple Tony and Margaret Dunton have raised thousands of pounds for local charities by getting lit up at Christmas.The spirit of Christmas has inspired the couple for almost two decades to turn their garden in Firs Road into a winter wonderland of lights and invention – turning their garage into the Bethlehem stable and their front garden into a pageant of Christmas. Once again this year, people of all ages have enjoyed the festive lights and contributed to the couple’s favourite charities – the local doctors’ surgery and the East Anglian Air Ambulance. To read more about this click here.


Ukulele Christmas - Pupils from Woodside School Hethersett were among 600 youngsters who had a great time playing with the Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain at Norwich Theatre Royal ahead of the orchestra’s pre-Christmas performance at Norwich Theatre Royal. To read about this story from the Eastern Daily Press newspaper click here.


Village Newsletter - The latest Hethersett Newsletter for December 2012 is now available online. Subjects covered include Open Gardens, 2013, Development in the village and season advice from Norfolk Constabulary. To read the latest edition click here.


Rachel's Charity Windfall - Hethersett woman Rachel Cooke has won a competition worth £1,000 for research into pancreatic cancer. You can read about this story from the Eastern Daily Press by clicking here.


High School Hits the High Notes - Edition Seven of Hethersett High School High Notes is now available on-line by clicking here. This edition covers business mentoring, school news and details of a re-design for the school web site which is now available by clicking here.


Busy Time for Library - It will be a busy New Year for Hethersett Library. Throughout January library members will be able to take part in a quiz aimed at blowing away the post festive cobwebs. On January 16th the Norfolk and Norwich Association for the Blind will be setting up an information point from 10.30 a.m until 12.30 p.m to provide information for those with sight impairment. Villains and vagabonds of Medieval Norwich is the subject of a talk on January 30th at 7 p.m. Meanwhile the pre Christmas coffee morning held for the MacMillan cancer charity raised £185.64. The library will be closed from Tuesday February 5th until Friday February 8th inclusive for the installation of new automatic doors to replace the existing ones which have been malfunctioning.


Award for Football Club - Hethersett Athletic Football Club has been awarded £3,780 for new equipment from the South Norfolk Renovation Project Fund. To read about this from the Eastern Daily Press newspaper click here.


Inquiry Into Allegations of Verbal Abuse - Police have launched an inquiry after an officer was allegedly recorded swearing at a man who had just been arrested. To read this story from the Eastern Daily Press newspaper click here.


Police Break Up Rave - Police broke up an illegal Christmas rave near Hethersett after receiving complaints about the loud music. To read this story from the Eastern Daily Press click here


Freezer Leak - Norfolk Fire crews attended a house in Campion Way, Hethersett, on December 28th to deal with a gas leak from a freezer. To read this story from the Eastern Daily Press click here


Players Make the Grade - Piano pupils from Hethersett and Wymondham held a charity Christmas concert at Hethersett Old Hall School for family and friends. Piano teacher, Rachel Barrett, has been organising annual concerts for the past few years to raise money for Musical Keys, a charity that provides music sessions and support for children with special needs. This year pupils played carols and classic Christmas songs which the audience enjoyed singing along to. Four of Rachel's pupils were awarded certificates for passing piano exams, including Chloe Bevan who achieved a merit for Grade eight,  the highest grade attainable. The total raised came to £165 which was gratefully received by Musical Keys, who also do outreach work in schools and hospitals. 


Seasonal Advice from Police - Norfolk Police have issued some seasonal advice to Hethersett residents, aimed at keeping everyone safe over the Christmas period. The advice particularly covers distraction burglaries - crimes where people trick or distract residents in order to gain entry to their property. Police have issued guidelines to lesson the chance of residents becoming victims of this particularly sick crime which usually preys on the elderly. The advice from the police is featured on the latest Hethersett Newsletter which is distributed throughout the village. You can read an online version by clicking here.


Opening Marks Coming of Age - Fitness Express at Park Farm Hotel has celebrated its 21st birthday by opening an extension to its fitness club and also by going carbon neutral throughout the leisure club and hotel. You can view photographs and read about the opening of their new spa pool by clicking here. You can read the story from the Eastern Daily Press and Wymondham Mercury web sites by clicking here.


Respect Success - The children's party held by the Respect Yourself group featured a disco, games, tea, facepainting and chocolate reindeers from Santa. The event in Hethersett Village Hall raised £243.70 and looks likely to be repeated next year. The group, which provides SMS text messages to young people to help them make important life decisions, will be holding a New Year's Eve disco party in Hethersett Village Hall from 7.30 p.m until 12.30 a.m. Tickets are £10 for adults, £5 for children aged three to 16 with Under-3s free. There will be a quiet room for children who want to sleep. More information is available from Claire on 07711 272016 or by e-mailing by clicking here. You can view a poster for this event by clicking here.


Open Gardens Date - Hethersett Open Gardens 2013 will take place on Sunday July 14th and will once again be organised by the Hethersett Environmental Action Team (HEAT). A number of gardens have already been lined-up for opening to the public and proceeds from the event will go to the Norfolk Accident Rescue Service (NARS) and Norwich Hedgehog Rescue. More information is available from Heather Williamson on 01603 812001 or Anne Edwards on 812309. You can also e-mail for more details by clicking here.


Village Hall Car Park Christmas Closure - The gate to the village hall car park will be closed over the Christmas period from 4 p.m on Christmas Eve until 8 a.m on December 27th and all day on January 1st. Residents are being asked to keep the mini recycling area tidy over the Christmas period and not to leave bottles on the floor if the containers are full. Meanwhile the Village Hall Management Committee is looking for somebody to take over as treasurer. Accounting skills and experience in computing and spreadsheet use would be an advantage. A laptop will be provided. Anyone interested or who would like to find out more about what the position entails should ring 07785 273408.


New Councillors - Hethersett Parish Council has two new councillors. Alison Utting and Peter Steward were voted in to fill two of the existing vacancies at the latest council meeting. The third place remains unfilled and will be advertised once again. The vacancies arose following the resignation of councillors David Elliott, Jackie Sutton and Simon Floyd.


Memories of a Gamesmaker - Hethersett's Ollie Armstrong has been featured on the Yahoo web site, giving a unique insight into what it was like to be a Games Maker at London 2012 Paralympic Games. You can read about Ollie's memories as he had "the time of his life" by clicking here.


Exploring Heritage - The Hethersett Schools Cluster group has been awarded £21,500 to work with Eastern Region Media to explore proverbs, tales and sayings indigenous to Norfolk. The project will work with school children and older people through oral history and creative arts workshops. ERM will produce an exhibition to be held at the Forum, Norwich, in February 2013 which will include artworks, film animation as well as an illustrated booklet. Using Tudor Times and re-enactment the Hethersett Schools Cluster will become memory catchers talking to people from local care homes, parish councils and elderly relations, to gather traditional sayings, health tips and recipes.


Busy Term for Youngsters - It has been a very busy term for pupils at Hethersett Old Hall School with a number of successes, visits and events. Art students Gemma Smith and Emily Laxton have had their work recognised by the internationally renowned Saatchi Gallery. Gemma's abstract "Reflections" and Emily's mixed Media work featuring a Geisha and Japenese culture have been included on the gallery's web site and can be viewed by clicking here. The Preparatory School had a visit from the Raptor Trust who brought along Barn Owls, Falcons and a Harris Hawk. Pupils learnt about hunting, nesting, breeding and diet. Prep School pupils also planted an oak sapling (see photo opposite) in the school grounds to mark the end of the Queen's Diamond Jubilee year. As part of their religious studies course on Sikhism, Year Nine pupils met Ujjal Singh Kuler who talked about his beliefs and even showed pupils how to tie a turban. Pupils have also been collecting shoe boxes full of goodies for deserving children in Serbia under the Christmas Child Appeal. Year Nine pupil Chloe Sellors has made her debut for Norfolk in the Under-15 badminton England team challenge where she came up against top players from Suffolk, Bedfordshire, Essex and Hertfordshire. The school has its own blog containing the latest news. This is available by clicking here.


Students' Success - Two students from Hethersett Old Hall School are celebrating their success at the United Kingdom Mathematics Trust Mathematics Challenge. The school's Year 13 A level mathematics students took part in the competition to solve problems in 90 minutes. Joy Chianu achieved a bronze certificate, a best in school certificate and a best in year certificate and Rebekah Oelrichs came second.


Mary Celebrates - Hethersett Hall resident Mary Ransley has celebrated her 101st birthday. You can read about her life by visiting our cuttings section or by clicking here.


Birthday Celebrations - About 70 people attended a music and tea afternoon organised by Hethersett Methodist Church's Singing Fellowship. The afternoon featured a Christmas programme of hymns and readings and group leader Leonie Pritchard (pictured on the right) cut a celebratory cake to mark the group's 10th birthday and the 40th music and tea afternoon to be held at the church.


Woodside's Christmas - Woodside Infants and Nursery School kicked off a week of Christmas celebrations with Reception class' production of "Wriggly Nativity" - which tells the festive story through catchy songs, movement and dance featuring Kings, donkeys, lambs and many other characters. The performance was enjoyed by parents, younger children and youngsters from the Ducklings playgroup. It will be repeated at 9 a.m on Wednesday 12th. At 10.30 and 2 p.m on the 12th the Nursery group will be presenting "Whoopsy Daisy Angel." Thursday 13th sees Year One presenting Tinsel and Teatowels which will also be repeated on Friday. Tuesday 18th sees Year Two's production of Christmas Recipe which will then be repeated on 19th (2 p.m each day). The Friends of Woodside held their Christmas Fair on December 7th.

Poppy Appeal Drop - The amount of money raised from the 2012 Royal British Legion Poppy Appeal in Hethersett and Little Melton has shown a drop on the previous four years. To see just how much was raised and find out how you can support the appeal in 2013 click here


Zumba Time - A new Zumba class will be starting in Hethersett Village Hall on Tuesday 8th January from noon to 1 p.m. The Zumba Gold class will be a lower intensity Zumba fitness class designed specifically for the over 50s and people who are returning to or just starting fitness classes.  It's still using Latin and pop music like normal Zumba and the routines are still simple and easy to follow.  The class will be led by Rachel Evans who also has a Friday Zumba class from 1-2 p.m which will be re-starting on January 11th. Classes cost £5. For more details Rachel can be contacted on 077897 48457 or e-mailed by clicking here. 


More Zumba - Kevin d'Odemont (Mr Dod) will also be starting a new Zumba class for adults (over the age of 16) on January 24th at Woodisde School from 7.30 p.m. Sessions cost £5 and Kevin can be contacted on 07588 202198 for more information. He can also be e-mailed by clicking here. Kevin is also on Facebook by clicking here or on Twitter @mrzumba


Annual Christmas Success - Hundreds of people from Hethersett and the surrounding area braved a bitterly cold night to enjoy the fifth annual village Christmas Fair in the Methodist Church. It was a night of special celebration for Hethersett, with the Pride of Norfolk Community of the Year plaque proudly on display during an evening of festive fair and entertainment. The award had been presented to the village earlier in the day at a special ceremony at County Hall. The fair was originally envisaged as a summer event but has now become established as part of the village’s pre-Christmas celebrations and is jointly organised by South Norfolk District Councillor Leslie Dale and Methodist Minister the Rev Derek Grimshaw. It featured a number of national and local charities and groups including: Hethersett Brownies, Hethersett Environmental Action Team (HEAT), Hethersett Junior School, Hethersett Mothers’ Union, Respect Yourself, Hethersett WI, Hethersett Jubilee Youth Club, the East Anglian Air Ambulance, Hope and Homes for Children charity, the RNLI and RSPB. Music was provided by Hethersett Woodside and Hethersett Junior Schools, Hethersett Methodist Singing Fellowship, Hethersett Singers and Hethersett Parish Church Choir and there was a special area for children to have their faces painted. It is hoped that the fair will continue to thrive as an important part of the annual Hethersett calendar.
Hawks Celebrate - Hethersett Hawks Cycle Speedway Club celebrated another busy season with a presentation party in Hethersett Social Club. You can read a report of the evening and view photographs by clicking here.
Little Melton Christmas Fair - Little Melton Church was packed for a special pre-Christmas festive fair. There was plenty to entertain all ages from Father Christmas and competitions and face painting for the young and mulled apple juice and good conversation for the young at heart. The Rev Mary Kerslake decorated a Christmas tree with her knitted interpretation of the 12 Days of Christmas with her 78 figures being sold in aid of the Star Throwers Cancer Charity. This was very much a village effort with Churchwarden Margaret Waller volunteering to have her face painted and other artwork depicting the 12 Days of Christmas painted by Little Melton Parish Councillor Stewart Cable. Local author Anne Carter was also on hand to sell copies of her recent publication “Bewitched by Burma.” Entertainment was provided by the Little Melton Recorder Group and local schoolchildren from the Meltons and Hethersett. Read the story from the Norwich Evening News by clicking here.
Choir's Festive Evening - A festive evening of songs and carols kicked off Christmas celebrations at Hethersett Jubilee Youth Club and at the same time helped raise funds for their work with local young people. Music was provided by the Barnham Broom based D’Capo Choir who mixed traditional Christmas music and carols with more contemporary numbers such as Sting’s “Fields of Gold” and Paul Simon’s “Sound of Silence.” The evening also included mulled wine and mince pies to warm everyone on a very cold night. It was the latest in a long line of fund-raising events for the club. The ladies pamper evening held in November raised £130. The club is also collecting plastic bottle tops in aid of the Matthew Project. The club is in urgent need of a secretary to take minutes of committee meetings which take place about six times a year.   


Bethlehem Experience - Hethersett Methodist Church will be the venue on December 14th and 15th for a Christmas experience. The Bethlehem Experience will take visitors on a journey through key events in the Christmas story. Actors and audio visual effects will be used to bring the story to life with visits to Mary’s home, Joseph’s workshop, a Magi’s home, a Bethlehem hillside, Herod’s palace and the stable. Local schools will be enjoying a performance during the day on Friday, 14th December which will be followed by a public performance in the evening at 7 p.m. There will be public performances on the Saturday at 10.30 a.m, 2 p.m and 4 p.m with each lasting about 45 minutes and being followed by refreshments. Booking is not necessary.


Search for New Rector Begins - The search for a new Rector for Hethersett and the Meltons to take the place of the Rev Di Lammas following her retirement has begun. A Benefice Profile describing the three villages and churches is being drawn up. This will identify priorities and also describe the sort of person the parishes are looking for. It is hoped that the process of choosing a new Rector will involve as many people as possibel and an "Away Morning" has been arranged for December 8th from 10 a.m until 1 p.m in Little Melton Village Hall. The meeting is open to anyone living in the three villages.


Helping to Avoid a Clash - We have received comments about how sometimes events in our village clash with others - making it difficult for people to support so many groups and good causes. If you are organising an event why not check our What's On section to see if there are any similar events taking place at the same time. Obviously our section can only cover some of the events that we know about but, as they say, every little counts (or in this case helps).


WEA Dates Announced - The next course being held by the Hethersett branch of the Worker's Educational Association will start on 17th January. The 10 week course on "Subterranean Norwich" will take place weekly at Hethersett High School at 7.30 p.m and will be led by Matthew Williams. The course will look at the physical conditions in the city area from the ground downwards and the ways in which it has affected and been affected by man's activities for the last 2000 years. The course will attempt to unravel some of the myths and mysteries about underground features and look at some of the ways in which subsidence damage can be minimised. Course fee is £45 and more information is available from Richard Aldridge on 811303. He can also be e-mailed by clicking here.


Award for New Running Group - Hethersett's Beginners' running group has won a top award less than a year after its formation. The group was named Run England's Eastern Region group of the year and was presented with their trophy at a presentation evening at Chelmsford City Football Club on December 3rd. The group was started as part of a partnership between Active Norfolk and Hethersett and the Meltons Sports Association. Our photograph shows Active Norfolk's Paul Evans and Chairman of Hethersett and the Melton's Sports Association Peter Steward receiving the award. The group currently meets on Monday mornings at 9.15 a.m and on Sunday mornings once a month on Hethersett Memorial Playing Field. A new beginners' group will be launched in April. For more information on the group visit its web site by clicking here.. You can read an article that has appeared in the Norwich Evening News by clicking here.
Coffee Morning for Cancer Charity - Hethersett library was the venue for a coffee morning in aid of MacMillan Cancer Support on December 3rd. Home made cakes, name the Teddy Bear and information about the support offered by the charity were available during the morning.

Schools Christmas Event - The four Hethersett schools combined for their annual Christmas carol service in the parish church on December 3rd. Hethersett Old Hall School, Hethersett High School, Hethersett Junior School and Hethersett Woodside Infants and Nursery School combined for an evening of carols and festive songs and readings. The evening was led by the Rev Mary Kerslake and there were readings from Woodside Head Nicola Cushion, Junior School Head Andy Whittle and items from the Junior School String Orchestra, Hethersett Old Hall School Senior Choir and Hethersett High School's Brass Ensemble.


John's Major Trek - Former Hethersett resident Jon Ashley has just hiked 70 miles across Hong Kong for charity. John and three friends raised £4,000 for Oxfam. The trek was featured in the Norwich Evening News and you can read this by clicking here. See also our cuttings section.


Science in a Box - Fresh from a successful exhibition in Jarrold Department Store, ‘Science and Art in Box’ 2012 is currently on display in Hethersett Library until 20th December.  GCSE art students, staff from Hethersett High School and Jarrold Department Store staff responded to the question: “All things connect- Are We Just a Piece of The Puzzle?” Their visual responses are contained in a series of wooden boxes on display in the library. Library Manager Jennifer Hoult said: “It is brilliant once again, to have a fine art project carried out by the local High School displayed here in the library. It gives the public an opportunity to see what actually goes on in schools.” This is the third year the successful project has run, this year being sponsored for the first time by Jarrolds.  Previous questions students and scientists responded to were, “How will Genetic Modification influence the future of our planet?” and “What would it be like if people could live forever?”  Science and Art in a Box is one of the many community events created and organised as part of an established educational events’ programme at Hethersett High School and Science College.