Chairman's Chat Archive 2017

Welcome to December and Season's greeting to you all

Well it seems unbelievable but were at the end of another year, the shops and telly are full of crimble decs. and adverts for toys and smellies! What's more winter seems to finally arrived with colder days and even some frosts.

I think most of the outdoor jobs are done, and all sensible gardeners and farmers are hibernating or in sheds/ workshops tinkering with the exception of sugar/fodder beet and of course those winter veg boys mmmmm sprouts!!!!!!!

 01.jpg 02.jpg 03.jpg 04.jpg

As we run up to Christmas most if not all groups and 'works' will be having their crimble meals, I'm glad of our groups one because as a self employed solo contractor our 'works' outing is a bit quiet!! I do have a bit of cracker advice for all these meals 'eat drink and be merry for tomorrow you can diet.'

So all that remains for me to do is wish you all a very merry Christmas and a happy new year and I hope 2018 brings you all the things you need.

 

If you are reading this and would like to know more about country link, please look at the programmes section on the website. You are welcome to get in touch with your local club direct or ring myself Tony on mobile 07951 789056, land line 01206 251515 or email antonypaul@live.co.uk.

If there is no club in your area, you are welcome to join in as a national member.

Country link looks forward to hearing from you.

Tony Paul
Chairman

 


 

Welcome one and all to November

Soz to you all for missing my October chat, work got in the way and also thanks to Liz who valiantly covered for me.

cc-nov17-01.jpg cc-nov17-02.jpg

It was lovely to see so many faces, many of them new to our weekend in Ullesthorpe.  For all those who may be visiting our site for the first time we have two national weekends a year moving round the country, our last was in the Spring in Cornwall our next in Humberside. If you would like to learn more visit our 'weekends' page and it will tell you about some of the past ones. Below are a couple of pics from the last one to wet your appetite. I look forward to seeing everyone in May.

cc-nov17-03.jpg cc-nov17-04.jpg cc-nov17-05.jpg cc-nov17-06.jpg cc-nov17-07.jpg

I hope you have all survived Halloween and in the towns and villages there was not too much 'tricking' going on, then of course there is bonfire night. I must admit I miss seeing lads pushing a pram or shopping trolley
with some sort of guy, stuffed or alive asking for a ' penny for the guy' or latterly 10d before becoming 10p and going round after any old wood/furniture for the fire.

cc-nov17-08.jpg cc-nov17-09.jpg cc-nov17-10.jpg cc-nov17-11.jpg

In the wider world the arable year is nearly over and it's time to move into the workshop for repairs and maintenance (sorry stock men I know you don't get this luxury!).  Yes there is a bit of weed spraying late
drilling and 'over winter' ploughing left and also the problem of hedges for farmers and trees/shrubs for the smaller farmer (not small people some call them gardeners of all types!). For those who don't know the term
'over winter' this is when a spring crop is to be planted, but you plough in the autumn so the winter weather, rain/frosts break down the lumps and aerate the soil so the spring cultivations go easier, it also helps with
weed control.

 

If you are reading this and would like to know more about country link, please look at the programmes section on the website. You are welcome to get in touch with your local club direct or ring myself Tony on mobile 07951 789056, land line 01206 251515 or email antonypaul@live.co.uk.

If there is no club in your area, you are welcome to join in as a national member.

Country link looks forward to hearing from you.

Tony Paul
Chairman

 


Welcome to October

Hello everyone,

Chairman's Chat this month, but a Secretary's Chat as Tony is very busy with his farming commitments.

The main Country Link occurrence last month was the National Committee Meeting held at Rodney's house in Oxfordshire - many thanks for your hospitality, Rodney.

The National Committee discussed different areas of Country Link: promoting Country Link, advertising, social media, future weekends, the future of Country Link, and the reports from the Regional Reps.  The Reps play an important role in the structure of Country Link: they are the link between the members and the National Committee, so thank you to those reps who let me have an update of what is happening in your areas - it is much appreciated, and interesting to read about what is going on in the different parts of the country.

If you would like to become more involved with the running of Country Link, please approach one of the National Committee members during the weekend in Warwickshire, or contact us through the website.

Looking forward to meeting up again in Warwickshire, for what promises to be a brilliant weekend!

Best wishes
Liz


Welcome to September

Before I go any further for those who are going or want to go to our autumn weekend, you should have your paperwork through for the second part of the process, please fill in your forms regarding trips and get them sent back with your balance payment as soon as possible to help the organisers get things sorted. (For those who are visitors to our pages have a look back at the main site at the weekend page 'they're greeeeat' well I am a Tony!).

Also for any members reading this there is a national committee meeting coming up in September so if there are any issues you want to bring to our attention now is the time to contact your regional rep. And let them know.

To quote a great magician it's 'presto chango' Harvest is now pretty much finished and most if not all the bales carted yes and before you shout at me I know there are quite a lot of spuds left but like the rest of us you will be cultivating as soon as they are out ready for winter cropping where possible.

1.jpg 2.jpg 3.jpg 4.jpg

(as a foot note the right hand picture is doing two jobs, he's subsoiling and drilling rape, for those who don't know it's that yellow crop that causes so much trouble to hay fever sufferers in the spring.)

They say that when the harvest is done the hard work starts, and I'm sure all those gardeners and allotmenteers will agree here as you have to do most of it by hand, not for you the big machinery to help breaking up the ground ready for the new crop, eradicating the weeds for a clean seed bed drilling the crop and fertilizing it and further weed control.

 

If you are reading this and would like to know more about country link, please look at the programmes section on the website. You are welcome to get in touch with your local club direct or ring myself Tony on mobile 07951 789056, land line 01206 251515 or email antonypaul@live.co.uk.

If there is no club in your area, you are welcome to join in as a national member.

Country link looks forward to hearing from you.

Tony Paul
Chairman

 


 

Welcome to August

Hi everyone, anyone know where July went? Also what's with the weather, it started scorching and we were running around combining and cultivating headlands to prevent fires (malicious or accidental) and at the end we're lifting potatoes in the mud as it won't stop raining.

For all of you be you farmers, allotmenteers, gardeners or with just a window box August is really the same as June, harvesting weeding and mowing in all it's forms so I'll skip the 'what's going on' and instead say a little about our organisation.

Our primary aim is to bring together all people who enjoy our countryside and what goes on in it be they from a rural or urban background, if you look at the program page you'll see the massive array of events being produced by the groups and if you're a member you can influence this by attending the program planning meetings, also your marital status doesn't matter we welcome all. One thing that is a result of this is the creation of good friendships I would even go as far as saying you can become one of a big 'extended family' who will be there for you if you need it.

Another benefit can be if you're like me and enjoy travelling round the UK for your hol's you can look up the events program of the area you're going and if there is something on then you can ring that contact and join in on that groups event.

If you haven't already take a gander round our web site, besides the programme page there are reports and photos from our biannual weekends as well as some mini weekends, these also are a great chance to meet people from all over the UK as we gather in one spot to enjoy ourselves and make new friends as well as contact numbers for your area so you can come along and meet us.

 

If you are reading this and would like to know more about country link, please look at the programmes section on the website. You are welcome to get in touch with your local club direct or ring myself Tony on mobile 07951 789056, land line 01206 251515 or email antonypaul@live.co.uk.

If there is no club in your area, you are welcome to join in as a national member.

Country link looks forward to hearing from you.

Tony Paul
Chairman

 


Welcome to July

Firstly let me apologise for this chat being late,the truth is with everything going on I completely forgot to write it, it was only someone yesterday at a barbecue being hosted by one of our members commenting that she missed reading it on the 1st that I realised I hadn't done it. I don't know where this month has gone, it started really badly when my partner who has Parkinson's took a turn for the worse and they changed her medication which was a disaster and for 2 weeks she became a complete invalid unable to stand up or walk unaided , dress herself etc. without help and it's with the support and advice of friends in country link that we pulled through, you'll all be glad to hear they changed it again and she's well on the mend and we both really enjoyed going out for the first time in ages together to the barbecue and meeting up with everyone again, so big thanks to all in our group and those nationally who have had such kind words for us they are just like an extended family.

On a much brighter note again with the support of our local group we raised £1560 for Parkinson's UK with the annual Barn Dance on the 24th.

On a frivolous note it's village fete season and last week was ours in Gt. Bentley and for my sins I upset all drivers trying to go through by blocking one of the roads in the village while the carnival procession did it's thing, it's amazing how many people ignore signs and think they are more important than everyone else!

cc1.jpg cc2.jpg cc3.jpg

As for work this last week and a half has been non stop as the farming calender gets into full swing, now we've had some rain with the sun the grass is finally growing and the hay season is in full swing, (yes and the lawns are also going berserk.). Another thing that is growing quickly are the weed beat for those lucky to only have a few they can be pulled by hand but for those of us unlucky enough to have carpets of them we need to surf them off that is using a giant mower cutting them off at the leaf canopy to stop the seeds being viable, for you gardeners it's a bit like having dandelions in your lawn they spoil the look and ruin the area round them. For all you who love your new spuds everyone is starting to lift now and best English new potatoes will be arriving in your shops now so support the British farmer and pig out on all things spud related! Lastly the cereal harvest is starting this last few weeks it all been sweeping and hovering barns out for the inspection the government now require to allow our crops into the food chain and today the 4th were hoping to try the Barley.

cc4.jpg cc5.jpg cc6.jpg cc7.jpg

I should point out the picture on the right is actually a weed-wiper not a weed-surfer, the first uses chemicals to kill the weed beat by 'wiping' the chemical on with an impregnated cloth rope.

 

If you are reading this and would like to know more about country link, please look at the programmes section on the website. You are welcome to get in touch with your local club direct or ring myself Tony on mobile 07951 789056, land line 01206 251515 or email antonypaul@live.co.uk.

If there is no club in your area, you are welcome to join in as a national member.

Country link looks forward to hearing from you.

Tony
Chairman

 


 

Welcome to June

Well what a month this is, it's SHOW SEASON.

But first congratulations to the Cornish crew of Valda, Martin and helpers for putting on such a wonderful weekend for us. (for those who don't know we as Country Link have two national weekends a year in the spring and autumn and we've just returned from the spring one if you look back at the main site there will be a full report and pics - I've put a couple below to whet your appetite. The first is past and present chairman, I hope you can tell which is which, the second is a couple of '60 fancy dress contestants.)

ccjune01.jpg ccjune02.jpg

On and off the land it's quite busy, off is because it's SHOW SEASON and who can resist going to look at all that shiny new equipment whether it's stuff for the gardener/allotments or new tractors/combines or just retail therapy with all those miscellaneous stalls that are creeping into these events, not to mention all those animals, heavy and light horses, livestock various and even pets! On the land there is hoeing sugar beat for all those weeds, a bit of top dressing to help the yield, pest control (funguses and insect pests.) but the worst job of all irritating irrigation on the spuds and beat. (although we've a little rest after these latest lovely showers.).(the middle pic is potatoes flooded after pipe burst problem) 

ccjune03.jpg ccjune04.jpg ccjune05.jpg

As an aside if you are reading this and your not a member these are just a few of the things that interest us and we do, something we have as an extra is an ability to expand on some of the things you may read about in my chats or be thinking about in general, for example, my group (Essex and Suffolk) last year were thinking about electricity in an off hand way and had a visit round Sizewell B and a 'digester plant' that makes electricity by burning methane given off from rotting vegetation which also then can use it's by product as a good fertilizer for the land making that farm almost 'carbon neutral'.A second example, do you like crisps, well another of our visits was a trip round a potato farm and independent crisp maker to see hoe its done. Or on a national level at our weekends we've been round a buffalo farm and a place where they clean cereal crops ready for processing into our food chain.

You see the advantage of being a member of an organisation like ours is that usually there will be someone in a group who knows someone who can get you into these places that as an individual you could not go.

 

If you are reading this and would like to know more about country link, please look at the programmes section on the website. You are welcome to get in touch with your local club direct or ring myself Tony on mobile 07951 789056, land line 01206 251515 or email antonypaul@live.co.uk.

If there is no club in your area, you are welcome to join in as a national member.

Country link looks forward to hearing from you.

Tony
Chairman

 


Hi and welcome to May

Its hard to believe a quarter of the year has already gone, the country side is looking a picture with the spring flowers out the crops flowering (especially the rape sorry hay fever sufferers.) and all the birds are in their vibrant mating plumage (this year there was a little bird on my lawn I did not recognise, it yellow belly was almost iridescent, I've been informed it was a yellow wagtail which are passing through at the moment.), in fact the only fly in the ointment for all of us with crops/flowers is a complete lack of rain.

ccmay01.jpg ccmay02.jpg ccmay03.jpg ccmay04.jpg

It looks as if this May day holiday will be very unusual.............no rain! May be (ha ha) the next one on the 29th will live up to reputation.

As a quick little history lesson, it seems all over the world May day was significant, it seems to have origins back as far as the druids who saw it as new year and had the festival of Beltane (the second most important after the solstice, the third being the half year festival of Samhain on November 1st.) They built fires and drove all the animals through the smoke for purification. When the Romans came it was the feast of flowers (Floralia) to the goddess Flora. The Vikings would cut down a large tree drag it into the long house and set fire to one end partying till it was all burnt. It's final incarnation is the one we know today with dancing round the maypole to symbolise fertility.

Don't forget the most important days this month... THE NATIONAL WEEKEND IN NEWQUAY... from the 19th - 22nd.For those who are new to our site this is one of two weekends held every year around the country where members from all over the country get together to meet up and let their hair down, if you go back to the home page you can click on a link and see some of the places we've been and some of the things we've done.

 

If you are reading this and would like to know more about country link, please look at the programmes section on the website. You are welcome to get in touch with your local club direct or ring myself Tony on mobile 07951 789056, land line 01206 251515 or email antonypaul@live.co.uk.

If there is no club in your area, you are welcome to join in as a national member.

Country link looks forward to hearing from you.

Tony
Chairman

 


 

April

Hopefully a warm spring welcome.

Most of you who have attended National weekends will have met or know of Helen Wyartt, I am very sorry to announce her sad death peacefully on the 15th March if any one would like to attend the funeral please contact me at the numbers below and I'll forward details.

I must also apologise for an error in my last chat; next time I look up dates of events I'll check first if they're English or not as those I gave were for America …...DOH!!

Now the ground is warming up everyone connected with the soil from window boxes to farming is geared up and running round like blue a...d fairy's planting spring crops, sugar beat, maize, potatoes and cereals are well under way, then there's fertilizing everything including the winter crops to get them going again after there winter dormancy. Then just to make sure everything is tickety-boo there is the spraying to control the pesky weeds.

image001.jpg image002.jpg image003.jpg image004.jpg

Dates for your diary; (hopefully correct this time)

Those of you who are superstitious don't forget to say white hare last thing before going to sleep on 31st March and white rabbit first thing when you wake up to April fools day.

Easter day on the 16th - don't eat too much choccy

The Queen is 91 on the 21st - happy birthday your majesty

St. George's Day on the 23rd

 

If you are reading this and would like to know more about country link, please look at the programmes section on the website. You are welcome to get in touch with your local club direct or ring myself Tony on mobile 07951 789056, land line 01206 251515 or email antonypaul@live.co.uk.

If there is no club in your area, you are welcome to join in as a national member.

Country link looks forward to hearing from you.

Tony
Chairman

 


 

March

Welcome to spring, I hope storm Doris hasn't blown you all away and you're enjoying the warmer weather that seems to have followed it.

This warmer weather brings on the new busy season for everyone involved with the soil, arable farmers fertalizeing the winter crops, spraying off the weeds and preparing the ground for drilling the spring crops, (cereals, spuds and sugar beat.), stock-men awaiting the birth of spring calves pigs and sheep, allotment'eers (and those looking for sanctuary.)deciding which veg. to plant and where and gardeners doing the same with plants/shrubs.

01.jpg 02.jpg 03.jpg 04.jpg

Don't forget to look out for those 'mad boxing hares' this March, and just to note although tradition has it it's two males boxing to prove masculinity before the female, it's really a female telling an over-amourouse male to back off and 'no means no'!

Days of note:- For all of us with Welsh ancestry it's St. David's day on the 1st, Mothering Sunday on the 10th, Commonwealth day on the 11th, another for of us with Irish roots it's St. Patrick's day 17th (Yes I do have both at great grandparent positions), a warning - avoid stone henge around the spring equinox on the 20th and finally don't forget to put your clocks forward on the 24th. (remember spring forward, fall back.)

 

If you are reading this and would like to know more about country link, please look at the programmes section on the website. You are welcome to get in touch with your local club direct or ring myself Tony on mobile 07951 789056, land line 01206 251515 or email antonypaul@live.co.uk.

If there is no club in your area, you are welcome to join in as a national member.

Country link looks forward to hearing from you.

Tony
Chairman

 


 

Welcome to February

I don't know about you but I think I must have blinked and lost January, it only seems like yesterday I was writing my last chat.

I do have a sad note to start with, it's with regret that I have to announce the death of Trevor Passmore from the Sussex group last month.

Now the game season has gone the farming community is off and running again, with these lovely hard frosts at the end of Jan. those of us who had done 'over winter ploughing' were out cultivating, filing in plough furrows and killing a few weeds and those who did not over winter will be out ploughing that stubble hoping to help control weeds ready for the spring crop drilling as soon as it warms up a bit.

2017-02-01 (3).png 2017-02-01 (4).png 2017-02-01 (5).png

During Jan we had a smattering of snow but I know up north you've had much more and I know in my garden this harsh weather has brought a myriad of birds in to eat the berries on my hedge.
For you gardeners now's the time to clear the rubbish and trim the garden for spring and remember to be careful with your garden fires

And don't forget you star crossed lovers the 14th Valentines day!

 

If you are reading this and would like to know more about country link, please look at the programmes section on the website. You are welcome to get in touch with your local club direct or ring myself Tony on mobile 07951 789056, land line 01206 251515 or email antonypaul@live.co.uk.

If there is no club in your area, you are welcome to join in as a national member.

Country link looks forward to hearing from you.

Tony
Chairman

 


 

January

Happy New Year to you all

new year.jpg

I hope you all had a good crimble and a festive new year and haven't put too many pounds on or had too many hangovers. For those who made new years resolutions good luck in keeping them.

Don't forget our spring weekend which will be on us before you know it (get your booking forms and deposits off before the dead line to reserve your place.) For those who are not members if you take a gander at the weekend section of our site you'll see all the mischief we get up to when in good company on our biannual gathering of the clans.

Talking of the clans, don;t forget a second chance this month for a knees up with Burns night on the 25th. I know our group always has one, and a lady in our group gets a special Glaswegian haggis, Scottish cheeses and makes herself what I can only describe as the best melt in the mouth shortbread I have ever tasted to go with the Cranachan.

2016 was a hectic year for my girlfriend and I with a major set back but with the help and considerations of this great family of Country Link we have got through and I'd like to take this opportunity to thank everyone from the committee who steer to the members far and wide for their support and help.

 

If you are reading this and would like to know more about country link, please look at the programmes section on the website. You are welcome to get in touch with your local club direct or ring myself Tony on mobile 07951 789056, land line 01206 251515 or email antonypaul@live.co.uk.

If there is no club in your area, you are welcome to join in as a national member.

Country link looks forward to hearing from you.

Tony
Chairman

 


 

Older Chairman's Chat >

 

web counter