Parish Council Elections – nominate! Fundraising: Soul Night success & by bike to Milan with St. Mary’s; Menston Cares info and contacts

Brass at the Soul evening. See below

Brass at the Soul evening. See below

The deadline for nominating someone for election to the Parish Council is 4pm Thursday 9th April. The elections are on Thursday 7th May.

This is your last chance to elect a Parish Council more representative of the population of Menston for the next four years – some younger Councillors and more women Councillors. To make things easier:

Nomination Papers Download of a Word document which you can print.

Parish Councillor – job description  It’s a pdf document

Click here for information on submitting a nomination and the election timetable  This is a web page

Click here for Neighbourhood Forum 10 March ’15 Minutes

Menston Cares 2015 information leaflet

Menston is very fortunate in having a magnificent organisation which offers a wide range of support services for vulnerable adults.  Vital information about the services, and information about other local support organisations, is in the 2015-16 information leaflet, which includes more than 20 contacts. Click Menston Cares Leaflet 2015 to download the leaflet.

St Mary’s staff bike to Milan for st martin’s hospice

Over two days next week, Wednesday and Thursday, five members of staff at St Mary’s Menston will cycle in relay from Menston to Milan – 1350km – in aid of St Martin’s hospice for children and young people, one of the school’s charities. You can donate by going to www.justgiving.com/Menston-Milan.

Tom Hamill, Harry Leigh, Domenic Manfredi, Tom Pringle and Giles Wilkes aim to cover the distance from Menston to Milan on stationary road bikes donated by Nuffield Health in Guiseley​. Each member of the team will cycle 270km and row 10km in order to match the 1350km distance.

The challenge will take place in the Pupil Reception area of the school and begins on the afternoon of Wednesday 1 April. The team will then cycle throughout the night and into the following day, aiming to finish before their 24 hour deadline.

Soul Night success – £1645.26 raised

The Soul Night at the Kirklands Community Centre last Saturday evening has been reported as “a fantastic night’ with tickets sold out by Saturday morning, so caretaker Vicky was rearranging tables and chairs to accommodate many more people than originally expected.

The dance floor was crowded with the Soul Surgeons on top form and Sally’s Army Choir was much appreciated. There are some photos from the night at the bottom.

The £1645.26 raised will go towards rebuilding one of the five classrooms still needed by a school in the Philippines following the destruction of Typhoon Haiyan at the end of 2013.

Organiser Beth Street is now busy organising a Summer Ball for the same cause, as last year. It’s at the Craiglands Hotel, Ilkley, on 6th June. Tickets are £25 and can be reserved by calling Beth on 0771 978 5986.

Sally's Army Choir

Sally’s Army Choir

Sally's Army Choir and guests

Busy Menston Saturday: Kirklands Community Centre, the Menstone, High Royds Social Club, a fighting team to Ilkley and getting ready for Menston in Bloom judging

Beth Street with the poster for the Soul Evening on 21 March, to raise money to build a school destroyed by typhoon HaiyanA lot to do this coming Saturday: an interesting youth snooker event begins at the Menstone in Farnley Road at 1pm, the last ‘Family Boogie’ of the season at the High Royds Social Club begins at 3pm and the day in Menston can be rounded off at the Soul Night at Kirklands Community Centre, beginning at 8pm. Meanwhile, some of the team working hard to protect Menston from inappropriate housing development will be going to a meeting in Ilkley where protection of both Wharfedale and Airedale will be the theme of discussions. You can also join the Menston in Bloom team for a ‘work session’ outside Kirklands at 9.30am.

Soul Night at Kirklands

It’s still not too late to get a ticket to the Soul Night at Kirklands; this event went down very well last year with the Soul Surgeons and Sally’s Army Choir entertaining, drinks and a chilli supper if you want it, all in a great cause – to rebuild a school destroyed by Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines at the end of 2013. Call Beth on 0771 978 5986 for tickets, £10, or you can buy at the door (starts at 8pm and goes on till 11pm) if you can get in!

Youth snooker at the Menstone

Beginning at 1pm on Saturday, there will be snooker pro plus coaches at the Menstone to celebrate the juniors who have taken part in the Paul Hunter Foundation snooker coaching. You will be able to watch the juniors play and there will be opportunities for juniors to join one of the forthcoming snooker coaching programmes to be run from the club.

Club coach, David Horrix, says that snooker is growing in popularity and the Menstone is on its way to becoming the number one club in the area for juniors.

You can just turn up at the Menstone between 1pm and 3pm or for more information contact David on 0751 921 0021.

Family Boogie at High Royds

Last chance this ‘season’, before the summer break, to take the kids along to the High Royds Social Club at the top of High Royds Drive, between 3pm and 5pm, for “adult music in a child-friendly setting”. It’s organised for families who want to have fun with their pre-school children but older siblings are welcome too. There’s a reasonably priced licensed bar, hot/cold drinks and snacks, free parking, baby change and food preparation facilities. It’s all free but a  £5 donation suggested, all of which goes to Save the Children. For more information email John at johnrobertparkinson@yahoo.co.uk.

Menston in Bloom work sessions before 31 March visit

Work sessions to make Menston look its best before a visit from Yorkshire In Bloom judges, Phillip Young and Joanne Morris, will be on Saturday morning and Monday (23rd) morning; for both meet outside Kirklands at 9.30am. Any help will be greatly appreciated, as would any tidying and litter picking around your street.

The judges are visiting on 31st March. They will be shown not only the lovely colourful planters throughout the village, but also the parks and open spaces, the churchyards, Meadowlea Children’s Home and the station, amongst other areas.

Planning Issues and Localism:  Is it Working?

A team from Menston will be attending a public meeting in Ilkley, about planning, housing, infrastructure and localism and the impact on local communities, organised by Wharfedale & Airedale Review Development (WARD) at the Clarke Foley Centre in Ilkley, beginning a 1pm on Saturday. Several local MPs and Councillors will be attending and there’s a BBC style ‘Question Time’ at 3pm to end proceedings. Everyone is welcome and there’s no charge to attend.

Our MP, Philip Davies, will be there, together with Stuart Andrew MP and Greg Mullholland MP. Other MPs have been invited. Speakers include Ilkley Ward Councillor Anne Hawkesworth.

For more information contact Steve Ellams, Special Projects Officer for WARD, s.ellams1@btinternet.com, mobile 0795 086 8379 or 01943 872607.

Mother’s Day – Village Bakery treats; get your event/activity listed in new Menston community magazine – deadline now; nominate some remarkable Menston women

It’s Mother’s Day on Sunday (15th) so if you have not yet experienced the smiling welcome from new proprietor Patricia (Trish), and her delicious cakes, at the Village Bakery in the village centre, now’s your chance.

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Trish has made an enticing shop window display and has various gifts including a ‘Make your own – cookies in a jar’ kit, or there’s a ‘Cupcake in a cup and saucer’. Or just pick up a selection of cakes from those on display, or a pot of special jam.

If you want to order (drop in or phone 01943 874963) a special cake you can pick it up on the Sunday morning, up to 12.30 (or before Sunday of course), or maybe you’d like to take Mum for a sandwich, cake and a coffee.

You can even drop in and Trish will decorate a cake for you while you wait, though clearly it’s better to order in advance.

This entrepreneural mother (she’s recently added this, her first business, to caring for the family) was mentioned in yesterday’s post. As this was marking International Women’s Day, the bulk of that post is being reproduced below.

Deadline for April/May events

Another reminder, the deadline for getting events in the listing in the April edition of the new community magazine covering Menston is this coming Thursday – 12 March. Send details of events in April/May, and even further ahead, to roger.at.itb@gmail.com.

New Menston community magazine

The magazine was launched by two female entrepreneurs with two other women, all mothers and all from Haworth, so as last Sunday was International Women’s Day it’s a good reason to post a little more about the venture but also make some attempt in this post to acknowledge some of the remarkable women of Menston – volunteers and entrepreneurs. Let down by Royal Mail at the last minute, the March magazine was not distributed as widely in Menston as intended but the next edition should be delivered to every house in early April. For more about the Haworth team pictured below go to http://grumpytyke.com.

The team which has brought a new community magazine to Menston. Left to Right: Louise Atkinson, partner and graphic designer, Cathy Frobisher , Office Manager, Janet-Alison Arkwright , Partner and 'Sales Contributor', and Andrea Kerman, Sales Person, at the reception in their offices in Haworth, each holding the first edition of the new magazine.

The all-female team which has brought a new community magazine to Menston. Left to Right: Louise Atkinson, partner and graphic designer, Cathy Frobisher , Office Manager, Janet-Alison Arkwright , Partner and ‘Sales Contributor'; Andrea Kerman, Sales Person. In their office in Haworth.

The Menston community is nourished by a wide range of women residents, both volunteers and entrepreneureal business women. They are not all known to the webmaster of this site but if you know of any who have been overlooked in the list below (which is in no particular order) feel free to add them using the ‘Comment’ box at the bottom of this post.

Some Menston women

Sue Rix, Menston’s only woman Parish Councillor (maybe that can be rectified in the forthcoming PC elections: nominate someone) and involved in many village projects and activities

Sue Richmond, Chair of the Menston Village Show Committee, volunteer at Cornerstone and proprietor of the Bleach Mill B&B

Elizabeth Loy, former teacher at Prince Henry’s school, member of the Menston Village Show committee, teaches crafts and involved in other activities

Christine North, founder and Chairperson of the Menston Business Association, runs The Studio, Pilates and Fitness.

Charlotte Leeming, Menston’s own TV ‘celebrity’ and, in the opinion of many, one of the two best presenters on BBC Look North.

Charlotte Montague, Solicitor specialising in services to Menston’s elderly population who, with Jalna Jenkins, also helps to stage the occasional  film shows at the Methodist church. Jalna is also involved in other church activities, including those for young people.

Patricia (Trish) Heeney, new proprietor of the Village Bakery, added to her other job of caring for family, including two children.

Menston Cares female volunteers, too many to mention individually but ensuring Menston’s elderly are supported in many different ways.

Jenna Wood, who runs Sunday teas for the elderly as Menston Coordinator for Contact the Elderly.

Rachel Holder, runs her own Human Resources business in Menston, Purple Frog, and is Co-Chair of the Friends of Menston Primary School.

Rev Ruth Yeoman, vicar at the Menston Parish Church

Zandra Monroe-Cochrane, Secretary of the Menston Business Association who runs the new Railway Children children’s centre at Menston railway station; formerly ran Cleasby Kindercare.

Kalyani Dakini, who runs the Meditation Centre in Cleasby Road.

Beth Street, involved in several youth activities but very active raising money to rebuild a school destroyed by typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines. The latest is the Soul Night at the Kirklands Community Centre on 21 March. A repeat of the very popular similar event last year.

There are many more remarkable women living in or contributing to community life in Menston. Please add any more you know of using the comment box below (or click ‘Leave a comment’ if you’re on the home page).

Reminders: Neighbourhood Forum; new community magazine Menston events/activities listing deadline; celebrate Menston women

The Neighbourhood Forum, now run by the Parish Council, is this evening (Tuesday 10 March); a reminder, though it’s been in the Events listing here for while. Another reminder, the deadline for getting events in the listing in the April edition of the new community magazine covering Menston is this coming Thursday – 12 March. Send details of events in April/May, and further ahead, to roger.at.itb@gmail.com.

Start of the Menston section of the new community magazine 'It's the business', which covers LS29

Start of the Menston section of the new community magazine ‘It’s the business’, which covers LS29

The magazine was launched by two female entrepreneurs with two other women, all mothers and all from Haworth, so as last Sunday was International Women’s Day it’s a good reason to post a little more about the venture but also make some attempt in this post to acknowledge some of the remarkable women of Menston – volunteers and entrepreneurs. Let down by Royal Mail at the last minute, the March magazine was not distributed as widely in Menston as intended but the next edition should be delivered to every house in early April. For more about the Haworth team go to http://grumpytyke.com.

The team which has brought a new community magazine to Menston. Left to Right: Louise Atkinson, partner and graphic designer, Cathy Frobisher , Office Manager, Janet-Alison Arkwright , Partner and 'Sales Contributor', and Andrea Kerman, Sales Person, at the reception in their offices in Haworth, each holding the first edition of the new magazine.

The all-female team which has brought a new community magazine to Menston. Left to Right: Louise Atkinson, partner and graphic designer, Cathy Frobisher , Office Manager, Janet-Alison Arkwright , Partner and ‘Sales Contributor'; Andrea Kerman, Sales Person. In their office in Haworth.

The Menston community is nourished by a wide range of women residents, both volunteers and entrepreneureal business women. They are not all known to the webmaster of this site but if you know of any who have been overlooked in the list below (which is in no particular order) feel free to add them using the ‘Comment’ box at the bottom of this post.

Some Menston women

Sue Rix, Menston’s only woman Parish Councillor (maybe that can be rectified in the forthcoming PC elections: nominate someone) and involved in many village projects and activities

Sue Richmond, Chair of the Menston Village Show Committee, volunteer at Cornerstone and proprietor of the Bleach Mill B&B

Elizabeth Loy, former teacher at Prince Henry’s school, member of the Menston Village Show committee, teaches crafts and involved in other activities

Christine North, founder and Chairperson of the Menston Business Association, runs The Studio, Pilates and Fitness.

Charlotte Leeming, Menston’s own TV ‘celebrity’ and, in the opinion of many, one of the two best presenters on BBC Look North.

Charlotte Montague, Solicitor specialising in services to Menston’s elderly population who, with Jalna Jenkins, also helps to stage the occasional  film shows at the Methodist church. Jalna is also involved in other church activities, including those for young people.

Patricia (Trish) Heeney, new proprietor of the Village Bakery, added to her other job of caring for family, including two children.

Menston Cares female volunteers, too many to mention individually but ensuring Menston’s elderly are supported in many different ways.

Jenna Wood, who runs Sunday teas for the elderly as Menston Coordinator for Contact the Elderly.

Rachel Holder, runs her own Human Resources business in Menston, Purple Frog, and is Co-Chair of the Friends of Menston Primary School.

Rev Ruth Yeoman, vicar at the Menston Parish Church

Zandra Monroe-Cochrane, Secretary of the Menston Business Association who runs the new Railway Children children’s centre at Menston railway station; formerly ran Cleasby Kindercare.

Kalyani Dakini, who runs the Meditation Centre in Cleasby Road.

Beth Street, involved in several youth activities but very active raising money to rebuild a school destroyed by typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines. The latest is the Soul Night at the Kirklands Community Centre on 21 March. A repeat of the very popular similar event last year.

There are many more remarkable women living in or contributing to community life in Menston. Please add any more you know of using the comment box below.

Business Association meeting postponed; still time for Menston pantomime; WW1 battlefields tour

The meeting of the Menston Business Association, scheduled for 26 February, has been postponed – new date to be confirmed – until Chair Christine North has recovered sufficiently from recent surgery.

We all wish Christine a rapid recovery.

Troupe of dancers from Menston ballet/dancing classes at Kirklands. Details of classes under 'Events'

Troupe of dancers from the regular Menston ballet/dancing classes at Kirklands, performing for the first time in the Menston pantomime. Details of classes under ‘Events’

Still time to see the panto

Opening night for this year’s panto was last night – Thursday – but there are still three opportunities to take in this Menston tradition. Staged by Menston Thespians, there are performances at 7.15pm on Friday and Saturday and a 2.00pm matinee on Saturday.

It’s at the Kirklands Community Centre. Tickets are £8, children £6, available by phoning 01943 872016 or 01943874855

Poppy picture with annotation 'Lest we forget'WW1 battlefields tour

There are still a few places left on the Menston tour of the WW1 battlefields in September. For six days from 13 to 18 September, there will be specialist guides and participants will be staying at the Novotel Ypres, a few minutes walk from the Menin Gate. The cost of the tour is £499, a £50 deposit being required at booking. To book or for more information contact either Judith Knaggs (david@timewarpband.co.uk) or Dale Smith (dale.smith@bradford.gov.uk).

Pantomime; Dr Who visits Menston; Queen at St Mary’s; another community site for Menston; Philip Davies joins Leeds MPs in housing protest

Poster advertising Menston Aladdin pantomime 19-21 FebruaryPanto week  – Aladdin – this week, Thursday, Friday and Saturday evenings and an afternoon matinee on Saturday. More details, including how to get tickets, under Events. For the first time this year there will be dancers from the ballet classes held in Kirklands on Tuesday afternoon/evenings and Saturday mornings; more details of these classes too in ‘Events‘, where they are listed. For the classes, contact menston@btapacademy.co.uk.

Apologies for the confusing times/dates for the panto in the ‘Imminent events’ on the right. It’s a Google thing. When Menston organisations do not send in details an event might be put in without a time; Google then decides it’s midnight. When the actual time is subsequently known, no way of deleting the ‘midnight performance’ has yet been found.

Another useful community site for Menston?

Have you seen the new Streetlife community site which has a page for the area “local to Menston” (www.streetlife.com)? It seems to aim to serve the same purpose as the ‘Menston village group’ on Facebook but it could be very useful for people who dislike Facebook intensely so do not go on it. You just sign up and say what area you are interested in. It doesn’t seem to understand that Menston and Guiseley are quite different so you get some Guiseley stuff when looking for Menston, but it’s a small price to pay. Recent items included someone looking for a lost cat, someone wanting to know where they could get tickets for the panto, some give-aways, and objections to the new proposal for a wind turbine.

Preserve us from even larger local authorities!

We are aware of course that the battle to preserve a way of life in Menston is not unique and the problems with large local authorities are not confined to Bradford. Aireborough MPs took up the issue recently in the House of Commons, among them our own MP Philip Davies: http://www.theyworkforyou.com/whall/?id=2015-02-03a.49.1 The complaints about Leeds City Council – from ignored to ignorance – sound only too familiar.

Grumpytyke says: Do we believe that creating even larger regional authorities, as proposed for ‘the north’ or Yorkshire, will bring more “local decision making”. Of course it will not; it will just mean more jobs for would-be politicians. What we need is real local decision making, ie, when the people of Menston vote overwhelmingly against a proposal which they know very well will destroy their village, it should not be over-ruled by some regional authority like Bradford, let alone one for ‘Yorkshire’. What we need is more power for the Parish Council; if it had power then capable people would stand for election to it, people would vote for them, and we would have true ‘local decision making’. As it is, I suspect that the forthcoming Parish Council elections will be ignored by most residents, as past ones have so the PC just re-elects itself.

Menston schools in pre-holiday energy

Pictures at the end; click any one to see them larger as a slide show

Menston schools pulled the stops out in the period leading up to half term. On the back of excellent GCSE etc results St. Mary’s rightly proclaimed their success with a “We are outstanding” banner across the front of the school. However, it’s not only about excellent results in the classroom or producing the right ticks for Ofsted, but the excellence carried through into another of the school’s superb shows ‘ ‘We will rock you’, based on the songs of Queen.

Meanwhile, Menston Primary was busy hosting an important guest, none other than Dr Who, who arrived to a red and orange goo-spattered playground in Tardis. Ominously, a Dalek arrived too (but the school is still there!). Dr Who was interested to hear what was ‘interesting’ about Menston, and the pupils were keen to tell him, having considered the question as part of their lessons. The parents have not been idle either, backing Menston in Bloom and Wharfedale Naturalists to create a willow tunnel in the school field.

10th anniversary for Menston in Bloom

Over the past ten years Menston in Bloom’s dedicated volunteers have planted bulbs, trees, shrubs and flowers throughout the village and been rewarded with awards in Yorkshire in Bloom and we have all benefitted from a beautiful village. The Yorkshire in Bloom judges will be visiting early in April so preparations must begin. The group’s first work party session is on Saturday, 21 February and you can meet up with them at 9.30am outside of Kirklands. If you cannot make that you can contact the group by email at menstoninbloom@gmail.com .

Flooding & drainage expert would not buy a house on Bingley Road, Menston, development

Picture of flooding in Menston village“Of course not” was the unequivocal reply of independent flooding and drainage expert, Dr Duncan Reed , when asked at last Thursday’s (29 Jan) meeting of the Bradford Council Regulatory & Appeals Committee whether he would buy a house on the proposed Bingley Road, Menston, housing development. Having heard also a warning from solicitor for the Menston Action Group, Chris Schofield, “Put simply, if you get this wrong, householders and their insurers are entitled to hold you legally responsible”, the committee did not approve the scheme.

Reports show a purchase would be foolish

You do not have to be an expert to conclude from a careful reading of Dr Reed’s report, and that of Professor David Rhodes before this, that anyone buying a house on this development would be very foolish. It is clear that the Bradford Council officers advising councillors to go ahead did not, do not, have the necessary expertise to give that advice. This in itself is no reflection on them: flooding resulting from situations like that of Menston is only just beginning to be understood.

Of course this is not likely to be the end of the matter; there is a lot of money to be made, and not only by the developers, but almost certainly also by a small group of individuals who have backed the scheme from the start. The developer’s agent has already indicated that if they do not appeal against last week’s decision they may instead proceed with another application for the same site.

Objectors to the R&A committee decision who commented on the Telegraph & Argus news report (in particular ‘Toni’ – who insists this is her/his real name), are completely wrong when they say, or imply, that those opposing the planned developments are a few wealthy ‘nimbys’ who would be directly affected by the flooding. By far the larger proportion of Menston residents who voted overwhelmingly against the Bingley Road and other developments in the referendum on the matter, would not be directly affected by the consequent flooding, nor are the developments in ‘their back yards’, nor are they ‘wealthy’. What these residents would be seriously affected by would be the overloading of already stretched health, educational facilities and transport and the irreparable damage to one of Yorkshire’s special attractions – village life in the individual communities which are scattered throughout the vast Bradford metropolitan area.

However, faced with a Council which thinks nothing of destroying its villages and semi-rural communities, and not only Menston, and developers and ‘Tonis’ who care even less, the stupidity of building on areas prone to flooding was the most likely reason for the Council to stop the developments if Councillors could be made to listen to the overwhelming evidence, which previously they have refused to do.

We now await the outcome of the recent High Court hearing on the other similarly foolish planned development, off Derry Hill, Menston.

For all the background, go to the Menston Action Group website: menstonactiongroup.wordpress.com. You can always get to the MAG website using the link in the right sidebar.