Extras – June 2018

Extras that didn’t make it into the printed magazine for June 2018.

June Events at the Basingstoke Centre

Main Events

It Started with Jason Donavon
Thursday 7 June/ 7.30pm/ £5
In this hilarious one-woman show Sarah Blanc recounts her past dating life through the songs of her first love – Jason Donovan. 

The Green Bicycle Murder
Tuesday 12 June/ 2pm / £4
On the evening of Saturday 5 July 1919, 21 year old Bella Wright went for a cycle ride and would shortly be found shot dead a short distance from her home.  A man on a green bicycle became the focus of attention and a year later he was arrested.  Follow the extraordinary trail of events with retired detective, Paul Stickler and decide for yourself whether the man was responsible for her death or whether she had been murdered at all.

Local and Family History Day
Saturday 23 June/ 10am – 3pm / FREE
Would you like to start some family history, research, learn more about the local area or meet local organisations who can help you take your interest further? Then join us at Basingstoke Discovery Centre for our FREE open day. There is no need to book for any of these events – just drop in! A range of organisations will be on hand all day to advise, support and answer any queries and questions you may have about your own research. There will also be two talks;

11am: First Steps in Family History Research
1pm: Basingstoke Workhouse

Austen Sisters
Tuesday 26 June / 2pm / £4
A diverting forty-minute dramatic and entertaining recital of readings from Jane and Cassandra Austen’s letters, prose and poetry about sisters, performed by local actress and speaker Rowan Suart.

Children’s events

Children’s Crafts
Saturday 23 June / from 10am / FREE / Ages 3+
Join us for a Teddy bear’s Picnic themed craft for National Picnic Week.

Library-supported courses

Kickstart you Creative Writing
Saturday 9 June/ 1pm – 4pm/ FREE
Looking to improve your creative writing? This course will help generate new ideas and get your creativity flowing. For people who write / who wish to write in any genre or for any age.

Computing, Internet and Email
Wednesday 20, 27 June & 4 & 11 July/ 9.30am – 12.30pm/ FREE
This course will introduce complete beginners to the basic uses of a computer, the internet and will be a guide to setting up and using an email account. It will also cover basic Word processing and using Windows and Internet Explorer software.

Sunflower Service
Sunday 10th June

St. Michael’s Hospice invites to you their annual Sunflower Service on Sunday 10th June held within the Hospice gardens.

Starting at 2pm there will be a blessing for all of the sunflowers which have been dedicated to loved ones. The blessing will be conducted by the Hospice Chaplain, Tom Honey, and will take place within the Hospice Labyrinth Garden where all the flowers will be displayed.

After the service, we welcome you to join us for afternoon tea. You may, if you wish, take your sunflower home with you or collect it anytime during the month of June where they will stay displayed in the beautiful gardens.

You can make your sunflower dedication in memory of a loved one at stmichaelshospice.org.uk/meadow.html. You can also make a dedication on the day.

For more information on the Sunflower Service please visit the website stmichaelshospice.org.uk, email events@stmichaelshospice.org.uk or call the Fundraising Hotline on 01256 848848.

Linguatastic Language Academy

June is always a fun and action-packed month for us…

Needless to say, on Saturday 16th, we will of course be participating in the Old Basing Carnival.  Have a look out for us, parading through the village (we might even have some goodies to share!) and shortly after the awarding of prizes, we’ll be in the arena, encouraging anyone and everyone to join us for some international dancing and singing (no prior knowledge required).  It’s all a lot of fun, so we do hope that whether you join us in the parade or not, whether you attend Linguatastic or not, you do come into the arena when invited to do so.

Two weeks after the carnival, on Saturday 30th June, we’ll be performing at World Party at Eastrop Park.  Again, we’ll be bringing some energetic and internationally-flavoured partying to the stage and and would love to see some familiar faces supporting us either from the sidelines or actually joining in with the action!  This event is free to attend and offers a wide variety of entertainment, food and drink.

Oh and before we go, “Bonne fête”, “Feliz día” “Buona festa” and so on and so forth to all the dads out there for Sunday 17th June!

St. Michael’s Hospice (North Hampshire) Big Wheel 26

Sunday 22nd July 2018, Down Grange Sports Complex, Basingstoke, RG22 5SN

St. Michael’s Hospice (North Hampshire) has opened registration for their 26th Big Wheel event taking place on Sunday 22nd July 2018 at 9.00hrs. Riders will spend a glorious summer’s day riding through the beautiful Hampshire countryside to raise funds for North Hampshire’s only adult Hospice.

Last year over 1,000 cyclists enjoyed a variety of routes and we are hoping for a record turnout this year. The very popular Advanced Level 65 miles is back for a third year and, after a successful introduction last year, the Intermediate 25 mile route will return. With options for a Challenger 39, a Beginner 15 and the Family 5 mile route, there is something for everyone.

For youngsters not yet ready to take on 5 miles, there is our Little Wheel which takes place entirely on site. All the rides will start and finish at Down Grange Sports Complex where everyone can also enjoy a range of refreshments. All finishers, from our Little Wheel to 65 milers, will receive a lovely medal to commemorate their efforts.

Big Wheel is a true family event and a great way to spend time together outdoors raising money for St. Michael’s Hospice, who provide specialist care and support to patients suffering from life-limiting illnesses.

Prices start from £5 for children and £10 for adults and full details are available on our website. To save time, avoid long queues and get the discounted entry price, we advise you to register beforehand. However, you can also register on the day. 

Laura Hughes, Events Manager for the Hospice said; ‘Big Wheel is our biggest fundraising event for 2018 and attracts both families and experienced riders. We are lucky to have an incredible venue at Down Grange and stunning Hampshire countryside for the riders. This year we hope to see as many people as possible taking part and have our best year yet. We rely on the support of the local community to make this event the success it is.’

‘The Hospice is getting the support of some wonderful local companies to sponsor the event this year. A big thank you to The Breeze and Precision Cycles for their support.’

St. Michael’s Hospice is a charity which provides its palliative and end-of-life care to patients and their families free of charge. It relies upon community support to generate over £3.1 million ever year.


When Prince Harry and Meghan Markle announced their engagement, the media was instantly aquiver with questions, but two stood out: who will design the dress and what will it look like? With just a few days to go until the big day, the world will soon find out!

The excitement around Harry and Meghan’s wedding – and not forgetting Princess Eugenie’s wedding in October – has inspired Hampshire Cultural Trust to create a stunning and unique exhibition showcasing wedding gowns from across the last three centuries.

A celebration and exploration of everything bridal wear, I Do! at the Willis Museum in Basingstoke runs until 7 July.

Highly publicised weddings always fascinate, with the bride’s dress so often the focus of attention. When Lady Diana Spencer married Prince Charles in 1981, the designers of her dress, David and Elizabeth Emanuel, became household names and stars in their own right.

With this year’s two royal weddings providing a new focus, the Hampshire Cultural Trust team has searched the extensive collections it cares for to find over 20 remarkable wedding dresses, representing 250 years of changing styles, fashions and tastes. There are also some fascinating stories to tell.

“We’ve selected wedding dresses from the 1770s to the present day, plus shoes, headdresses, bonnets, veils and some items tying in with the royal theme, such as samples of the fabric used for Princess Marina’s wedding in 1932 to the Duke of Kent,” says Ioannis Ioannidis, Cultural Experience Manager at Hampshire Cultural Trust.

“Some of the dresses have very personal – and very touching – stories to tell. One from the 1940s is made entirely from parachute silk using a pattern saved from before the war and there is a beautiful black gown worn by a bride in mourning. I Do! takes visitors down a virtual aisle of history, from the extravagance of the 18th century to the elegance of 2018’s designs. It’s an exquisite exhibition that tells the stories behind the fashion choices made by brides-to be as they prepared to say, ‘I do’.”

I Do! also explores recurrent themes and traditions that are only found at weddings and explains the stories behind these enduring practices, from the concept of ‘fairy tale’ weddings to the notion of wearing ‘something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue’.

The exhibition runs until 7 July. Admission is free, donations are welcome. The exhibition will tour to The Gallery, Gosport Discovery Centre from 27 July – 9 October and to The Gallery, Winchester Discovery Centre from 20 October – 6 January 2019.

What’s On at The Vyne

July & August 2018

Normal admission applies to all events except outdoor theatre. You can pick up a range of fun family trail sheets from Visitor Reception.

Den building
Head out into the woods and see who can make the best den from materials from the woodland floor.

Find your bearings and test your map reading skills with orienteering. You can collect the materials you’ll need at Visitor Reception.

Get to know a tree.
Bring paper and a crayon and get ready to capture a tree rubbing. All you have to do is look out for a tree with an orange label, place the paper up against the tree trunk and start colouring it in with the crayon. The pattern of the bark will appear on the paper. Free event normal admission applies.

Go on a scavenger hunt.
Collect your trail sheet from Visitor Reception and see what natural objects have fallen to the ground in the woods and gardens at The Vyne. Free event normal admission applies.

Geocaching challenge
Daily until 21 September
Intrepid explorers can download the Geocaching® app from geocaching.com/play before hunting for themed geocaches in Morgaston Woods.

The lost tapestries trail
Daily until 30 Sep
On this family trail, help recover and fit together jigsaw pieces of oriental tapestries hidden across the grounds. Pick up your trail sheet at visitor reception.
Suggested donation £1 per trail sheet

Behind-the-scenes house tours
3, 19 July
10.30-11.30 B 01256 883858
Working with centuries-old objects, the team must meticulously plan each stage of the installation of the new layout in the house in order to safely rearrange the collection for visitors to enjoy. Find out the conservation challenges involved when changing the layout of a historic house.

Gardens seasonal walk
19 July, 16 August, 13 September, 25 October and 6 December 2-3pm
Conducted by a member of the gardens team, gain a deeper insight into the gardens at The Vyne. Seize the opportunity to ask our gardener questions and gain tips on all things horticultural. No booking required; limited tickets given on first-come-first served basis on the day.

Shifting landscapes photography trail and competition
1 Jun-9 Sep (closing date 13 Aug)
Witness how much the landscape at The Vyne changes as the seasons come and go and submit your own snaps in a photography competition. Stand at the exact spot where photographs have been taken and displayed in the grounds and compare these with the view you see on your visit.
You can capture the next chapter in The Vyne’s shifting landscapes by taking your own photos of The Vyne’s grounds and emailing these to thevyne@nationaltrust.org.uk.by the closing date on 13 August.  A shortlist of ten photos will be selected by the team and announced on 20 August. You can then vote for the winner when you spend £10 or more in the shop or the Brewhouse tea-room up until 24 September. The winning photo will be announced and exhibited in the Brewhouse tea-room on 1 October.

Outdoor theatre: The Importance of Being Earnest
Saturday 4 August 7pm-10pm
Tickets: Adult: £13 (age 16+) Child: £8 (age 5-15) Under 5s go free B 0344 249 1895
Everybody loves Ernest. In fact, Cecily and Gwendolen are both engaged to Ernest. The only trouble is, Ernest doesn’t exist. Or does he…? This energetic production from the critically-acclaimed Pantaloons gives this play a hilarious twist!
With the doors opening at 5.45pm, pack your camping chairs and picnics and join us on the north lawn. Buy yourself a programme or raffle ticket and unpack your delicious picnic. As the sun sets on The Vyne, sit back and relax in beautiful surroundings. Don’t forget to wrap up warm and bring a torch for the journey back to the car through the gardens.

Outdoor theatre: The Tempest
Saturday 11 August 7pm-10pm
Tickets £19. Under 5s go free. B 0344 249 1895
‘We are such stuff as dreams are made on, and our little life is rounded with a sleep’.
The Lord Chamberlain’s Men return to The Vyne’s north lawn to perform this Shakespearian classic.
Pack your picnics, camping chairs and warm clothes ready to recline in the grounds of a former Tudor palace. Drink in hand get ready to enjoy this firm Vyne favourite. Doors open 5.45pm for picnics. Programmes and raffle tickets will be on sale before the performance.

Heritage Open Day
Saturday 15 September
Find out what all the fuss is about with free entry to The Vyne. Enjoy a stroll through the grounds of this former Tudor palace recently rescued in a £5.4m roof project. Ask for a timed ticket at Visitor Reception and you can explore the house which played host to a royal visit argued to have impacted the course of the Reformation.

Hampshire & Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust

The latest article can be found here.

Probus hears about Life as an Apprentice

“Learn a trade, son” was the advice Probus Club member David Wickens received from his father. Like many about to leave school in the Swinging Sixties, he had no clear idea of what to do with the rest of his life.

An uncle showed him how with the right instruments it was possible to test simultaneously fifty points of a jet engine fan blade. The idea of an apprenticeship in engineering formed. A company in the Cambridge Instrument group was the benefactor of the speaker’s ambitions. There followed five years of day release and night school.

To show how the instruments manufactured by his company were used visits were arranged to some customers. David Brown in Newport Pagnell, manufactured Aston Martin and Lagonda supercars. The Royal Small Arms factory in London made the Lea Enfield rifle. The first large scale plant David visited was to the Dungeness “A” Nuclear Power station.

Stewarts & Lloyds steel works at Corby was almost self sufficient from open cast mining of iron ore  for ingot production and thence steel tube manufacture. BOAC at Heathrow allowed him to see aircraft being serviced using the instruments David was training to make.

David Wickens was good at his job being made apprentice of the year. To demonstrate some of his skills he brought along some of the hand tools made in the early years of his apprenticeship.

Further experiences were developed in Work Study and Production Engineering, then in the Drawing Office and eventually into Sales and Marketing. This latter area held him for the rest of his career as he progressed to become Export Manager visiting many manufacturing plants throughout the World.

And it all started the day he saw a fan blade being tested.

See www.probusbasingstoke.wordpress.com for more information about this social club for retired professional and business managers.


Bridges near and far are central to our two talks in June. On Wednesday 13 June Alan Hayward will present The Severn Railway Bridge Disaster of 1960. Little known outside railway (and perhaps shipping) circles, the Sharpness bridge across the Severn, built in 1879 and the longest railway bridge in England, was fatally damaged by a shipping accident in 1960. Alan will describe the history of the bridge with particular reference to the disaster.

The following meeting on Wednesday 27 June will take us rather further afield. Paul Whittle examines The River Kwai Railway – the true story, covering the story of the railway’s construction and examining the many differences between the actual events and those portrayed in the famous film.

Our meetings are held at 7.45pm at The Wote Street Club in New Road in Basingstoke town centre. We welcome new members to the Society and we are always pleased to see non-members at our meetings at a cost of just £3. More information about the Society, membership and future meetings can be found on our website at www.bdrs70d.com or telephone 01256 331002.

Basingstoke Concert Band

Basingstoke Blues Club

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