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Archive News March 2015

Below are some of the stories featured on this site in March 2015

Memorable Evening of Drama - Pupils from Hethersett Old Hall School produced a memorable evening of drama when they tackled one of the most demanding productions in their history. Their adaptation of William Golding’s  Lord of The Flies at Norwich Puppet Theatre stretched their abilities to the max and they certainly delivered, producing a work that was in turn thought-provoking and more than a little scary. In her programme notes director Jenny Richards spoke about her deep love of  Golding’s book and its serious subject matter and complex challenges. The fact that these challenges were met effortlessly by the cast – all female apart from the parts of the naval officer and airman – says much for both their skill and resilience. At first the director considered casting the boys in the book as girls. That would have put a different spin on the story and possibly led to a loss of power as well as a loss of macho adolescent boy-style angst struggles that are such a major part of the book: “Girls do not behave in the same way as boys and if I were to adapt the story to suit their behaviour, I would lose the very essence of the text,” Jenny Richards said. The result is a powerful drama that drags the audience into the believability of it all. We always see the cast as boys, at times little more than savages and the themes of Britishness, inherent power struggles and a dystopian society are always at the forefront. Above all the cast show that the fight for survival is intertwined with elements of evasiveness as the “islanders” struggle to come to terms with the inverted reality of the situation and their survival takes a back seat to the various issues that raise their head. There was a brooding intensity to the performance, quite remarkable in people so young. Letitia Gaskin as Jack is menacing, whilst Megan Chainey as Piggy displays just the right amount of vulnerability without turning the part into a caricature. Francesca Udberg gives a creditable performance as Ralph and Zoe Baker as Percival and Lacey Mayes as Simon bring a chilling naivety to their parts. The support players also do a fine job in immersing the audience in the subject matter. This was a performance that will live long in the memory.

The Heat is On - Things will certainly be hotting up for a Hethersett father and son as they prepare to walk across burning coals in aid of charity. You can read this story from the Norwich Evening News by clicking here.

Fete and Dog Show - Hethersett Jubilee Youth Club will be holding a summer fete and dog show on 27th June from midday until 3.30 p.m. in the youth club hall and grounds. The youth club is opening up this year's event by inviting local clubs, organisations and businesses to have a stall or pitch for £5 each: "We want to make it more of a community event and would like local groups to take stalls or help with a specific item," said organiser Gillian Saunders who can be contacted on 01953 607566. The club is also looking for volunteers to help on Wednesday evenings either from 5.45 to 7.30 p.m or from 7.30 to 9.15 p.m. This involves selling tuck, making drinks and chatting with the youngsters.


Dog Mess Plea - Hethersett Parish Council is concerned about the increase in dogs' mess around the village and in particular in the Firs Road area. The council is urging residents to report incidents to South Norfolk Council in an attempt to stop the anti-social behaviour and help clean up the village. The council has also received a number of complaints about overhanging trees and shrubs obscuring street lights and causing problems on footpaths.


Teacher in Court - A Hethersett Academy teacher has appeared in court charged with possessing and distributing indecent images of children. Andrew Bayliss from North Wootton near King's Lynn will next appear before Norwich Crown Court on April 9th. Academy Principal Gareth Stevens has written to parents assuring them that the alleged offences do not involve any pupil at Hethersett Academy or within the Hethersett community.

Top National Sporting Event Comes to Hethersett - One of the country's top sporting events will be passing through Hethersett in September. Our village is on the route of the seventh and penultimate stage of the Friends Life Tour of Britain cycle race on Saturday 12th September. The longest stage in the 2015 race will start from Fakenham racecourse at around midday and then cover 225 kilometres to finish in Ipswich. It is anticipated the race will pass through Hethersett early afternoon with many of the world's top racers taking part. This year's race begins in Wales on September 6th and finishes with the eighth stage in Central London. It is the first time for three years that the race has visited Norfolk but the first time ever that it has passed through Hethersett. The stage will also take in Reepham, Aylsham, Norwich, Wymondham, Attleborough and Thetford before heading off into Suffolk. Full details of the various stages are available on the tour's official web site which can be visited by clicking here. We will have more information on the tour's visit to Hethersett as and when we receive it. We will also be setting up a special section of this web site for the event. You can access this by clicking here.

Success at Crufts - An eight-year-old dog agility competitor from Hethersett and her canine companion Pipsqueak have had a successful showing at Crufts. You can read this story from the Wymondham Mercury by clicking here.

Junior School Celebrates - A leading churchman and top professional footballer have visited Hethersett Junior School to unveil a new window and minibus. You can read who the special guests were by viewing a cutting from the Norwich Evening News by clicking here.


Rugby Club to Appeal - Wymondham Rugby Club are appealing a decision to refuse them planning permission for a new ground which was turned down because it would erode the green belt between Wymondham and Hethersett. You can read this story from the Eastern Daily Press by clicking here.

Parish Council News - Hethersett is hoping to attract people into joining the parish council. Present councillors will be mounting a stall at Hethersett Methodist Church over the next few weeks to attract candidates to stand in the coming contest which takes place on the same day as the General Election – May 7th. A date still has to be set for the stall, but it is hoped that members of the public will be encouraged to put their names forward. Application forms can be downloaded from the South Norfolk Council web site and must be lodged between March 24th and April 9th. May 7th will also see an election for Hethersett’s two seats on South Norfolk Council. Hethersett Parish Council is still looking into the viability of maintaining the existing skateboard near the Village Hall. “Recent appeals have brought very little response, but we want to ensure that every avenue has been investigated before making a final decision,” said council chair John Nightingale. The council has given the go-ahead for the clean-up and restoration of the historic sign which was recently moved from the edge to the centre of the village in Great Melton Road. It dates back to the 1930s and is regarded as a piece of Hethersett history despite becoming rusty and dilapidated. At the latest meeting members agreed to pay for the sign to be renovated. Members heard that a new defibrillator for public use will be placed on the outside wall of the village chemists in the next  few weeks. The council is asking Norfolk Constabulary for a presentation before deciding on whether to finance a second Police Community Support Officer for the village. The council is also looking into the possibility of a new bus shelter in Deacon Drive following a request from parishioners. Norfolk County Council Highways’ Department is being contacted about the suitability of the site and local residents will also be approached for their views before any decision is made. The council also heard about plans to open a new monthly dementia café in the village in May and also the launch of a bereavement support group. The Wild About Hethersett natural history book put together by the Hethersett Environmental Action Team has sold out in print format but is now available to download free of charge from a private web site which is available by clicking here. Wild About Hethersett chronicles a year in the natural history of the village. 

Old Hall School Production - Hethersett Old Hall School's senior drama department will be stretching itself with its original adaptation of William Golding's Lord of The Flies which promises to provide a challenging, enjoyable and enlightening experience at Norwich Puppet Theatre on Tuesday 17th and Wednesday 18th March. Exploring aspects of physical theatre, the performance draws heavily on the original text - and  even the scenery comprises text. The production is suitable for adults and families with older children and will also appeal  to schools offering Lord of the Flies as part of their English GCSE curriculum, providing insights and discussion points to enhance pupils' understanding of Golding's brutal core message. Jenny Richards, Director of Drama at the school, says: “I wanted to direct LOTF, as I believe that although written as a response to World War II, it is highly relevant in our global climate of  political unrest and changing values.It shows how, without principles, rules and laws, we can easily resort to becoming savages. I also wanted to examine what being British means to us and the qualities of Britishness.” Tickets are £8 for adults, £6 for concessions and are available from the Theatre Box Office or the School on 01603 810390.


Dates at the Library - Hethersett Library has a full programme of events lined-up for April from book groups to computer sessions and a talk by local author Ralph Jackman. To see just what is going on and how to book click here.

Businesses Targeted by Break-Ins - Hethersett's cancer charity shop and a beauty salon have been hit by break-ins on the same night. You can read about this from the Wymondham Mercury by clicking here

Junior School Recognised for Green Work - Hethersett Junior School has been named amongst the top 20 green schools in the country. The school has been recognised by environmental company Greenmatch for its outstanding work towards providing green energy. The citation reads as follows "Energy saving has been high on the agenda for Hethersett Junior School in the last years. With the development of an Eco team, the school took initiatives in installing double glazing and LED lights, the next step was starting to generate their own clean energy. Among this, the school is involved in different campaign such as the “Food For Life Campaign” which further increases the school’s positive impact on its community." Hethersett Junior joins a number of primary schools from throughout the country, along with Liverpool University and the London School of Economics in the top 20. Other award winners include the nationally acclaimed Eden Project in Cornwall.

Marshals Needed - Marshals are needed for the coming Hethersett 30/60/90 bike ride on 5th April. The organisers will be making a small donation to clubs or charities who offer to help. Anyone interested can contact Bart Anderton on 07860 645793 or via email by clicking here

Hawks Underway - Hethersett Hawks Cycle Speedway Club kick started its season with a 106-72 victory away to Great Blakenham. The first action on the Hethersett track this season took place under floodlights with an open evening for members of Hethersett Velo Club. They fully enjoyed the difference in the bikes to what they are used to and sampled normal racing as well as time trials, handicaps and relay races. The cycle speedway club welcomes any groups who want an evening with a difference. This season sees two big events coming to the Hethersett Memorial Playing Field track - a British Women and Girls League fixture in May and a British Youth and Junior League National Round in July.

Death of Former Librarian - Many Hethersett people will remember librarian Janet Smith from Wymondham, who worked in the village library and set-up the Hethersett Village Archive. You can read about Janet's life from the Wymondham Mercury by clicking here.

Quiz Time - The Hethersett Group of the Norfolk Association for the Disabled will be holding a quiz night on Saturday May 16th in Hethersett Village Hall (7 for 7.30 p.m). Tickets are £5 (bring your own refreshments) and available from Hodge Podge in Oak Square or from Angela Farrington on 01603 810342.

Easter Refuse Collections - The table below shows changes in the usual household refuse collections over the coming Easter period:

Usual Collection Day Revised Collection Day Change
Friday 3rd April Saturday 4th April 1 day late
Monday 6th April Tuesday 7th April 1 day late
Tuesday 7th April Wednesday 8th April 1 day late
Wednesday 8th April Thursday 9th April 1 day late
Thursday 9th April Friday 10th April 1 day late
Friday 10th April Saturday 11th April 1 day late



Group to Support Dementia Sufferers - A new group is looking to turn Hethersett into a dementia friendly village. The Hethersett Speak Up for Dementia – a Positive Vision for the Future Group will be launching a regular monthly coffee hub from May for those suffering from the disease and their carers. It has also set-up a steering group to increase awareness of dementia. Chairman of the new group is Hethersett South Norfolk District Councillor David Bills: “The new group was kick started with a performance in Hethersett Village Hall which saw accomplished actor and writer Trevor Smith present a one man play where he portrayed an aging actor living in a care home who accepts rather than suffers dementia. “Following the performance a number of people have come forward to help us and we are working closely with Age UK and the Alzheimer’s Society who are fully supportive of what we are trying to achieve. “Speak Up For Dementia – A Positive Vision For the Future is a fully constituted committee that is the culmination of a lot of hard work by a steering group and will now be the vehicle for a long term project that will start to work with local businesses, agencies, Hethersett Surgery, Hethersett Library and other groups to create a dementia friendly village,” Mr Bills said. The committee is made up of people from diverse backgrounds who in their day to day lives contribute to the life of the village. This includes representatives from Hethersett Hall Car Home, Woodcote Sheltered Housing complex, Hethersett Churches and local residents. “Part of our vision is the running of a local dementia café (the Hethersett Hub) as a place where those who experience the different forms of dementia and their carers can meet once a month at Hethersett Hall,” Mr Bills added. The first Hethersett Hub meeting/coffee morning will take place from 10 a.m until midday on May 19th. "Being dementia friendly means being dementia aware. We know there are a lot of sufferers and carers in Hethersett and the surrounding area who would welcome support. We don’t want this to be a flash in the pan thing. We must keep dementia in the forefront of people’s minds and make sure sufferers and carers are taken care of,” Mr Bills added. Following on from plans to start the dementia hub, interest has also been shown locally for a group to support those who have been bereaved. It is likely that a Heart of Hethersett Compassionate Friends Group will also start in the near future. Anybody wanting further information on the dementia group can contact David Bills on 01603 813041 or mobile 07101 80016 or secretary Stephen Baxter on 07808 329102. 


School Open Day - Hethersett Old Hall School will be holding an open morning, this Saturday (March 7th) from 10am-noon. All families - parents, grandparents and friends - with a potential interest in joining the school are welcome. The morning will be particularly useful for anyone with children or grandchildren due to start nursery or reception this Autumn, or  changing up to senior school. It's a chance to meet pupils, staff and other parents and tour the school and grounds. Easy parking and free refreshments. If anyone living locally is just curious to take a closer look at the school they are also welcome to come and have a guided tour!


Kett's Rebellion Comes to Life - The story of Kett's Rebellion is taking to the stage in the near future. The story of rebel Robert Kett is being performed in Wymondham and you can read all about this and Kett's Hethersett connections from the Wymondham Mercury by clicking here.

Sporting Chance - A special cricket match promising top class sport in aid of a Wymondham-based cancer charity is set for April. On Sunday April 12th, Hethersett and Tas Valley will take on Tony Selby’s Norfolk Select XI for the Les King Star Throwers Patron’s Trophy at their home ground at Flordon. As well as raising money for charity, the Hethersett and Tas Valley Club will be taking the opportunity to show off its facilities to the public and invited guests. There will also be the presentation of a grant cheque for over £6,000 from South Norfolk Council which has allowed the club to buy new covers, a new scoreboard and make other ground improvements, particularly to its second pitch. The 40 over a side game starts at 1 p.m and the match is being sponsored by MW Surfacing Ltd. It will be the second year the match has been held at Flordon with Hethersett running out winners last year. “This is the ideal way to start the new cricket season with a high quality match to give players some vital practice. It also gives us the opportunity to raise money for such a worthy cause and show off our first class facilities and invite the public to visit one of the most picturesque grounds in Norfolk with its top class facilities and pitches,” said Valley’s Club Development Officer Peter Steward. Les King said was delighted to hook up once again with the Flordon-based club in order to raise the profile of the cancer charity. 

New Club Re-Inforces Values - A new after school club has been set up at Hethersett Junior School to re-inforce Christian values. The 3.16 Club will promote the values of the Church of England Junior School and will meet during each half-term, about once every six weeks, with a serious message running alongside fun craft activities. A band of adult helpers from Hethersett Parish and Methodist Churches will be on hand to help pupils from the school get the most out of a club with a dual purpose name as organiser Tara Whiting from Hethersett Parish Church explained: “The 3.16 title comes from the famous Bible passage in St John chapter 3 verse 16 and also coincides with the time of the end of the school day and the start of the club session. “The club is designed to re-inforce the Christian values of the school. As a church we have to adapt and be more accessible to modern day living. In today’s society going to church isn’t a priority for many families and many people only go for weddings, christenings and other major events. We want to help foster closer relations between the churches in Hethersett, the community and the schools,” Mrs Whiting said. The club already has 21 youngsters signed up. The first session saw them making trays as a sign of service, the school’s theme for this half-term. They also decorated biscuits, made name badges, model hands and feet and did puzzles. Hethersett Parish Church also runs regular messy church events for youngsters.

Quiz Evening for Dance Show - A quiz evening held in Hethersett Village Hall raised £527 towards the bi-ennial dance show at Norwich Theatre Royal put on by the Yvonne School of Dance. Twelve teams took part in the event with questions set by Roger Morgan and Mike Anderson. Funds from the show will help to buy costumes and cover the cost of the show which is due on stage again in 2016. The Hethersett-based dance school was founded in 1984 by Yvonne Cutting and offers dance training for boys, girls from the age of three in ballet, tap, modern theatre and acrobatics. Adults are offered classes in ballet, tap and modern theatre.