Bardon Mill

A BIG welcome to the new starters who began the ‘best years of their life’, their school years, on Tuesday. And let’s hope Henshaw Primary has a brilliant year with a much more ‘normal’ background to work with than the last couple of years. 

BANK holiday Covid cases don’t seem to have surged as badly as feared, so fingers crossed for a healthy, happy return to normal village life. The warmest wishes from Bardon Mill for your own family and your own life plans this autumn.

FRANCES Makepeace is doing a sponsored walk for Dementia UK in September. You can find her sponsor form at the village shop and also on Just Giving. If you would like to get your own fundraising or volunteering efforts in this column, just email 

WINNERS of the scarecrow trail will be announced on September 11 on Bardon Mill Matters. The leek club winners have also been announced, but just too late for this column. 

THE Village Hall Committee is still keen for new folk to join them - fundraising, chair and secretary roles all available.

ALSO village halls related, Northumberland CAN is recruiting for a new (but well supported) role of village halls advisor. Deadline – September 20.

Allen Valleys
Robert Philipson

A REMINDER that this Saturday, Catton WI is inviting you to join them on Catton village green for tea and cake between 2 and 4pm. If there is rain, this event will be held in the village hall. There will be information about WI events, a produce table and sales stall together with delicious home baking. Catton WI is also holding their AGM (and pie and peas) on Monday 13 at 7.15pm in Catton village hall. New members are welcome so please come along.

ALSO this Saturday, it is the Allen Valley and Kings Head Leek Show in Allendale village hall. Doors open for viewing at 4pm with a bar, tea,coffee and scones available from then. Sale of flowers and vegetables will take place at 7pm together with a raffle of hampers. Admission is 50p, with children free, and schedules are available from 0795 1413365 or 01434 683715.

ON Sunday 12, Allen Valley Churches is holding Climate Change in the recreation ground outside Allendale village hall at 11am. Join them for a climate-focused service to explore climate care and action on climate change, to pray and to commit to action. This will be followed by a picnic and celebration of local environment groups. Please bring your own picnic blanket and picnic (plastic free if possible). Outdoor seating will be provided and refreshments(including bar) will be available.

NIGHTS are cutting in so it may be a good time to order your oil through the Allen Valleys Oil Buying Co-operative. To guarantee a September delivery, the deadline is noon on Tuesday, September 14. Telephone 07770 272130 or email

CONGRATULATIONS to members of the Allendale Fire Crew who took on and succeeded the Three Peak Challenge in 26 hours. Traffic hold ups meant that their target of scaling Ben Nevis, Scafell and finally, Mount Snowdon within 24 hours was not possible but still an incredible feat of endurance. To date, they have raised more than £5,100 for the Firefighters Charity and they thoroughly deserved the warm welcome back to the fire station last Sunday.

FOR any items to be included in these notes, please email me at or telephone 01434 685266 by 6pm Sunday.

Wendy Bond

THROUGHOUT the pandemic, while we have often led very different lives, our sheep and cattle have continued to keep our farmers living their normal 12-hour, seven-days-a-week lives, though with even narrow social contact and  needing some considerable ingenuity to keep the normal yearly calendar operating. We have all missed the entertainment of the agricultural shows, but these are the shop window for the specialist sheep breeders on the hilltops and where the lowland farmers go to weigh up their choices for new stock. Instead, individual breeders have hosted eg the “Backie Men” to show their sheep at one farm. At last, the breed shows have started up again at the marts.

ONE very pleasing type of the ‘diversification’ that farmers are having to embrace has been the development of on-the-farm uses for milk. We have become very used to Dianne’s magnificent, organic Birdoswald yoghurt.  And very welcome is the outburst of delicious ice creams that I have noticed far and wide across Yorkshire.W have it here, too: Jethro’s ice cream, made in Haltwhistle from the very local milk from the cows at the new and innovative Temon Milk Barn, will be on sale on Sunday, September 12 at the Greenhead Farmers’ Market.

GILSLAND Village Hall will be the scene of a new idea at the Apple Weekend on September 18/19 - if you would like to turn your glut of apples into lovely juice, ring Clare on 47371.

WE still need to be careful but here are two ideas for outdoor, fresh-air events: The Eden Valley Art trail takes place from September 4 to 19, with 10 artists exhibiting together in Castle Carrick, and the Slaggyford Dog Trials will return this year, on September 19, behind Stone Farmhouse, Knarsdale.