Local News

The Village correspondent for our local paper, The Bath Chronicle as of April 2002 is:

Shirley Betts,
Tel: 01225 833683

Have you a piece of news or story to tell, maybe an anniversary or special birthday to celebrate. Do tell me about any forthcoming event in the Village ie: - Horticultural Society, School events, Village shop, Church news, Pub quiz etc. Are there any celebrations being organised? If you would like an article written about your village news in the Bath Chronicle then please get in touch with me.


Application form for New Manager for The Galleries Shop and Cafe at Freshford


Villagers to vote on plan for Wellow sports field http://www.thisissomerset.co.uk/Villagers-vote-plan-Wellow-sports-field/story-17948231-detail/story.html


Marian does it again....Marian Osborne has been nomonated for a Community award for the second time. Details from the Bath Chronicle http://www.thisisbath.co.uk/Hunt-people-like-Marian/story-13744528-detail/story.htm show that Marian has been nominated for the Pride in Bath Community Champion of the Year. Well done Marian your community salutes you.


Work starts on the new Wellow Traffic Calming Measures.


Community Volunteer Awards

Two residents of Wellow were nominated for the Chairman of Bath & North East Somerset Council's Community Awards for 2009/2010. At a ceremony held in the Banqueting Room at The Guildhall, Bath on Tuesday 8th December, Marian Osborne and Richard Holland were awarded Highly Commended certificates for the categories of "The Long Voluntary Service of the Year" and "Environmental Volunteer of the Year" respectively.

Marian has lived and been involved in many aspects of village life for over 50 years. Such areas being a Trustee and Secretary to Wellow Village Hall, Founder Committee member and now Chairman of the volunteer run Parlour Shop Wellow, member of The Wellow Singers and later the Wellow Amateur Dramatic Society along with the active support of many other groups, clubs and societies within the village.

Richard has lived in Wellow for 27 years and in 2008 as a response to the looming issue of "Peak Oil" and "Climate Change" decided to set up The Wellow Oil Group. Wellow is not connected to the natural gas grid of the country and many residents are dependent to a great extent on oil to heat their homes.This scheme allows residents to join a monthly bulk buying syndicate for the purchase of domestic fuel oil thereby saving money through economies of scale and more importantly reducing the number of oil tanker deliveries into Wellow saving on traffic movements and environmental pollution.

Congratulations to Marian and Richard for their dedication and committment to the community of Wellow.


Playground Meeting

Following our consultation with young people in the local community, the first designs for the play area based on the information you gave us will be available for you to see at a meeting at the village hall in Wellow.

We would really like as many children as possible to come and see the designs so that we can get your comments or suggestions for the final design.

Please drop in to Wellow Village Hall on Friday 10th July between 4pm -6pm. We look forward to seeing you there.


Local village resident Jeff Handel is looking for sponsorship for CLIC when he runs the London Marathon on 25th April 2009. If you would like to sponsor Jeff simply click on this link and follow the instruction http://www.bmycharity.com/jeffhandel


Pride in our village and its heritage. A plea for help. St. Julian's Church needs all villagers financial help. A meeting to discuss the situation will be held at Wellow Village Hall on Thursday 9th July @ 8:00pm


Wellow Garage Sale - Sunday 5th July 2009 - 10:00 to 13:00 for details CLICK HERE


This is a plea for help aimed at all the PC users who are also walkers and students of Somerset's rich past industrial history. No doubt most of your readers are familiar with Google Earth and Maps; now it is possible to look down on your home area as if in an aircraft on a lovely sunny day. All kinds of features are revealed. The one I'm interested in is the former bed of the Somersetshire Coal Canal and associated tramways. Although it's possible to discern some possible routes in the area west of Bath, nothing beats the person on the ground. Please go to:somersetcoalcanal.uk.tt/ and follow the instructions to take part in this enjoyable exercise (my email url etc is there should anyone get stuck).

Thank you in anticipation,

Yours, Richard Stevens.


OPEN GARDENS at Rowley Grange, Farleigh Hungerford in aid of a new Garden of Remberance for the parish church in Norton St. Philip. Sunday 19th June - 2.00 to 5.30pm, No charge for entry but donations welcome

Rowley Grange poster




Matthew Street Reverend Matthew Street

Chronicle correspondent PEASEDOWN St John has welcomed its new vicar with a service of celebration.

Matthew Street has officially taken over at St John's Church.

He was installed as priest in charge of the United Benefice of Peasedown St John with Wellow.

Before being called to the church, Mr Street had a successful career in marketing, with his last post being European general manager at electrical giant Samsung.

He said his most notable achievement during his former career was that of controlling the UK launch of the popular alcoholic drink Rolling Rock in 1990, while he was marketing director of Labatt's Brewing UK.

The service to instal him was conducted by the Bishop of Taunton, the Rt Rev Andrew Radford, and the Rural Dean of Midsomer Norton, the Rev Colin Turner.

Formerly the curate at Holy Trinity Church in Combe Down, where he spent three years, Mr Street said he was looking forward to the challenges that lay ahead.

He said: "I'm very pleased with my appointment as the new vicar of Peasedown St John with Wellow. "

My family and I are looking forward to meeting church members and the wider community.

"We aim to become an integral part of village life and I personally intend to spend the early part of my ministry listening to the needs and concerns of my congregation."

Mr Street spends his leisure time swimming, listening to classical music, reading, going to the cinema and on his computer, as well as spending time with his wife Jane and seven-year-old daughter Hannah, both of whom are equally excited about their new surroundings and getting involved in village life.

Mr Street takes over from the Rev Hugh Bonsey, who moved to the Great Wishford area in Wiltshire last February after 11 years at Peasedown St John.

Churchwarden Jacqueline Maggs said: "The churchwardens are looking forward to assisting Matthew in building up the life of the parish church in Peasedown St John."

Parishioners who would like to meet him can call him on 01761 432293.


CHISTMAS FAIR at Knights Barn on Saturday 13th November 2004, 2 to 5pm. Extensive details of goods on sale CLICK HERE


Today we heard of the sad news and sudden death of Gordon Hewlett. Our thoughts and prayers go out to Sue and family at this tragic time.

Gordon Hewlett

Gordon was a wonderful man who had time and energy to talk, help or provide sound advice and information on a miriad of subjects not least our local history. He will be sadly missed by the village of Wellow. Gordon was a dear friend to many but especially to his fellow bellringers at St. Julian's Church, Wellow where he was a keen and regular member of the band and No.4 bell will be especially lonely without you Gordon. You will be missed.

Richard Holland


Wellow Amateur Dramatic Society (WADS) is facing the final curtain! An article from the Somerset Guardian on the posssible demise of this long-standing village group.


Wellow Fashion Show

Wow!! A big thank you to all those who took part in the Fashion show on the 15th May at St Julian's Church, Lights Camera Action, PARIS, NEW YORK, MILAN AND WELLOW!!! An incredible night that brought the entire village together, the models were amazing and it was wonderful to see you all strut your stuff - you were all brilliant. A huge thank you to the committee: Chris Hurdle, Amanda Dennes, Rhian Gordon, Steph Wheeler, Megan Holland and Ann Lydia Halewood, you really made it happen, Wellow rocked!!!

We had so many behind the scenes supporters from the village whom we would like to thank, they were the backbone of the evening, Darren Gordon on the commentary, Chris Hurdle on Lighting, Staging and Sound, Rhian Gordon on Choreography and music, Margaret Layzell, Libby Kerr, Charles Kerr, Frances Whittington, Clare Hibbit, all on wardrobe, Penny Fahie on Make up, Jill and Colin Tremellen for the welcome punch, Magic Box for the bar, Flowers in the church by Joyce Mannings and Libby Kerr, Mowing of the churchyard by Charles Kerr, John Rose for the phantom noise, and for organising the fantastic band after the show, Shirley Betts, Ann Lydia Halewood, David Halewood, and Jackie Halle for running the Raffle, Gordon Lewis and all his helpers who put up Marquees, staging etc. Parlour shop for selling the tickets, Clare and Simon Veysey for letting us borrow their field, to the Hort. Soc. for letting us borrow the marquees, Richard and Karen Twose for displaying their Jewellery, Shirley Betts for helping with the Advertising in newspapers etc, and finally to Steph Wheeler who made everything possible. What a fantastic evening, and many thanks to everyone who came and supported it. If I have forgotten anyone please accept our apologies. This show could not of taken place without all the help and support of everyone, what a fantastic village we live in!!! and how lucky we are to have such a wonderful community.

We managed to raise approximately £1200, which will be shared between the Village Hall and St Julian's Church.

A selection of photographs taken on the night can be viewed HERE.

Sarah Lewis


Willow Farm Builders waste Recycling Waste - a new application and an appeal against the refusal in October 2003.

For more details CLICK HERE


Local author, Alick Bartholomew, publishes his latest book "Hidden Nature" The Startling Insights of Viktor Schauberger with a foreward by the famous naturalist David Bellamy.

Austrian naturalist Viktor Schauberger (1885-1958) was far ahead of his time. From his unusually detailed observations of the natural world, he pioneered a completely new understanding of how nature works - a new Science of Nature. He also foresaw, and tried to warn against, the global waste and ecological destruction of our age.

This book descibes and explains Schauberger's insights in contemporary, accessible language, His remarkable discoveries - which address issues such as GM tecnologies, sick water, ailing forests, climate change and, above all, renewable energy - have dramatic implications for how we should work with nature and its resources.

AAlick Bartholomew read Geology and Geography at the University of Cambridge, followed by graduate studies at the University of Chicago. He has commissioned and published many books on Schauberger and has been working with Schauberger material for over twenty years.

You may buy Hidden Nature securely online at 20% discount (£16 +post & packing) from http://www.schauberger-books.org.uk/, or from Sulis Health, The Hollies, Mill Hill, Wellow, Bath, BA2 8QJ

ISBN No 0-86315-432-8
288 pages,
Publication: 20 November 2003




The early hours of Wednesday 10th September brought fire to the fields south of Wellow as a barn situated off Hassage Hill burst into flames....The cause at present is unknown but resulted in the complete destruction of the barn and its contents. The following photograph was captured from Wellow by Mr. Chris Hurdle whilst the fire was at its most intense. The Firebrigade had four appliances in attendance throughout the night from approx' 1.30am to 4.00pm the following afternoon. Water is not readily available at the location and thus the brigage had to run hoses from the hydrant in The Square in Wellow for best part of 1 Kilometre to the site as well as drawing water from the ford on Wellow Brook.

Barn fire Wellow


The following article appeared in the Bath Chronicle:

Community goes like the clappers to restore sound of church bells

Bellringers at Wellow really dropped a clanger when their giant tenor bell clapper came crashing down during a ringing session.

Ringers at St. Julian's Church in Wellow were practising their peals when the 28kg clapper sheared off the bell and came crashing down the 14th century tower.

The clapper is the hammer which sits inside the bell and makes the ringing sound when the bellrope is pulled.

Richard Holland, 47, towermaster, said "We were just ringing down the bells and there was an almighty thud above our heads that sent most people diving for cover. It sounded like a rumble of thunder as it rolled across the floor of the bell chamber above us then all went silent on the tenor bell. They are quite thick the floorboards and fortunately it is quite a sturdy tower."

A new clapper has been ordered at a cost of £1000 from the Whitechapel Bell Foundry in London.

Mr. Holland who works as a catering manager, paid tribute to the villagers who have rallied round to raise £800 in just four weeks since the incident.He said "we have been very, very fortunate with the generosity of people in the village.

Bell chamber

Bit of a clanger: Richard holland, towermaster, with the church bells, and insert, the broken clapper


The whole parish is only about 400 people and it it has been absolutely fantastic the way the community seems to miss hearing the bells."

There are 17 campanologists at Wellow church which has a peal of six bells held in a frame which dates from 1750. Mr. Holland said "It sounds a little hollow with only five bells because we are missing the big bang at the end."


Wellow and District Horticultural Society held its 55th annual flower show and country fair on Saturday 30th August and attacted its usual large crowd who enjoyed the many stalls, entertainment and exhibits, a sample of which are included below. All photographs were kindly taken and submitted by Mr. Ron Humphreys of Wellow.

Dog show 2003 Scary people 2003
shoppers 2003 Village Shop stall 2003
Morris 2003 {short description of image}



The Bath & Camerton Archaeological Society has two open days coming up at Upper Row Farm, Hemington.

Saturday, June 28th 10 am to 4pm Archaeology Open Day at Upper Row Farm, Hemington. This is part of Time Team's Big Dig Weekend, and will be a hands on event! Come and learn archaeological techniques.

Saturday, July 19th 10 am to 4 pm Archaeology Open Day at Upper Row Farm, Hemington, as part of National Archaeology Weekend.

The main excavation season will start on August 18th and there will be a further open day in late September. Details to follow.

Upper Row Farm is half a mile south of Tucker's Grave Inn (A366, Norton St Philip to Faulkland road). Follow the signposts. For details of either event, contact Jayne Lawes, director of excavations, on 01761 431741, jlawes@supanet.com, or on our website www.bacas.org.


An astronomical event with pictures to prove it! The Transition of Mercury across the Sun on the early morning of 7th May 2003. Geoff White directs the locals in taking observations:-

Mercury 1 Mercury 2 Mercury 3



The latest copy of the Local Liberal Democrats newsletter "FOCUS" can be viewed from HERE


The recent application for a recycling works at Willow Farm, Wellow has provoked a village-wide interest. A Public Meeting was convened on Wednesday 11th September to inform those interested. The Minutes of that meeting are set out HERE



Outline planning consent for 25 acres of employment uses on the Bloors development site at Peasedown St John has now been validated by the completion of the long awaited Section 106 Agreement.

The S106 ensures that if development takes place £47,500 is payable by the developer to Wellow as a contribution towards the implementation of the traffic calming scheme presented to residents by the WRA at the public meeting last April. Bloors has also reimbursed us our professional fees of £2,150. We shall be writing to all who kindly contributed to the Appeal Fund. As promised, we shall offer to repay or to maintain the balance for the benefit of the Parish. This may be needed soon!

We understand that Bath Press is not going to relocate to this site. As predicted, this leaves Bloors unwilling to start development and proves it is unviable to do so without a majority occupier. The bad news is that Bloors is preparing further proposals for the site which involve unspecified, alternative uses. We are to be consulted and will report further.

The outcome of this shows that positive action brings results, even when the cause seems lost. Remember, we did not start until after B&NES had resolved to grant consent. We have also learned that the Folly Down scheme has been called in and will be the subject of a Public Inquiry. Another example of local action succeeding.

Alistair Colston Tel: 834 528


Wellow Villagers celebrate the Winter Solstice at Stoney Littleton Long Barrow

An intrepid band of Wellow residents sallied forth through wind and snow to welcome the Sun as it breached the horizon at approx' 8.50am on the morning of Saturday 22nd December 2001. The Sun was due to cast its' rays down through the entrance of the Stoney Littleton Long Barrow but, unfortunately, inclement weather prevented the full effect being witnessed by the assembled throng. But were our rugged band down-hearted? Certainly not, with camping equipment duly hauled to the site a hearty breakfast of eggs, bacon, bread and tea lifted their spirits and began what is hoped henceforth to be an annual pilgrimage to this ancient monument (reputed to be 4000 or 5000 years old depending on which source you consult).

The band consisted the of following: Mr. Richard & Miss Lucy Whittington, Mr. Ron & Mrs. Sheilagh Humphreys, Mr. Alex Martin & Mrs. Janet Earp, Miss Erica Smith & Miss Janet Plater, Mr. Mark, Miss Rhona & Holly Watson and Mr. Richard Holland.

Photographic evidence of the escapade is shown below:


Long Barrow group


Lucy in the entrance Alex near the mouth


Home bid for old signal box (By Wendy Walker - Bath Chronicle)

The Signal box at Wellow, one of the last structures still standing on the Bath to Radstock section of the old Somerset & Dorset Railway line, should not be turned into a house. Bath & North East Somerset Council Planners are insisting.

But successive owners have tried to have it converted and last night the B&NES are development sub-committee was due to consider the latest plan.

Owner Tom Rothschild has applied for retrospective permission to keep the signal box as a one bedroomed dwelling, and retain an extension built on to the art and crafts studio WITHOUT planning permission.

Planning officers were recommending refusal of Mr. Rothschild's application, on the ground's that this is an important historic building and that using it as a home spoils its character. They also said thgat using it as a dwelling resulted in unacceptable overlooking and loss of privacy. The committee was due to be given a full planning history of the site.

Seventeen stages had been pinpointed by plannning officers, ranging from the permission given for change of use to an artist's studio in 1967 to refusal of permission for conversion into a home in 1988, through a successful prosecution of the applicant (Tom Rothschild) for failure to comply with an enforcement notice about the demolition of the extension in 1997 and refusal by the Court of Appeal for leave to challenge an enforcement notice in the High Court in 1999.

Comment. This applicant Mr. Tom Rothschild has flagrantly flouted planning law for a considerable time and continues to do so. It is a disgrace that he continues to ignore the laws that protect the rest if society from such abuse. Bath & North East Somerset Council need to take the legal measures necessary to carry these long outstanding enforcement notices without further delay



Purr-fect end to tale of missing moggie

(By Sari Eldridge - Bath Chronicle Thursday 12th April 2001)

Otto the runaway cat has returned after myteriously disappearing three weeks ago. His anxious owner launched an appeal after the cat from London went missing on a visit to Wellow.

But, this week the four-year-old Russian Blue male turned up just three miles away at Combe Hay. The drama began after Otto's owner, 25-year-old Mark Irving, brought the cat from Brixton in London to live with his parents in Wellow last November.

Despite appearing to settle in, after a few months the city slicker disappeared in March. Mark's worried father, Robert, alerted his son and the hunt began. The search even saw support from children who attend St. Julian's Church School. They turned detective as the hunt took off across the village.

Then this week Robert found the feline fugutive following a tip-off by a local resident, who had seen a poster about the missing cat. Robert said "It was so good to eventually find him. Mark is relieved. Otto is a streetwise city slicker, who loved London, so we can only guess he missed life there and tried to go back. We would like to thank everyone for their help with the search. We were so pleased with the response from people keen to help".


The Government Office for the South West, who are responsible for deciding whether to refer the Peasedown St. John Planning application for industrial development to the Secretary of State, have written, on the 1st March 2001, as follows:-

Ref: SW/THM/5219/61:1



I refer to previous correspondence about the above application.

The application has now been referred to this office as a departure from the development plan, and we have given very careful consideration to your letter and to the other requests we have received for the Secretary of state to intervene. However, we have concluded that the issues raised are ones which can be properly left to Bath and North East Somerset Council to decide and that the Secretary of State's intervention would not be justified. While I realise you will be disappointed with the decision, I should make clear that it should not be taken as tacit approval of the proposal or as any expression of opinion on its merits.

yours sincerely


Obviously this is a disappointing outcome and the WRA will now consider the next appropriate course of action and keep you all informed in due course.


Hats off to Magic Box (by Andrew Dix Chronicle correspondent, Friday 23/2/2001)

The children of Magic Box pre-school of Wellow and Shoscombe have welcomed their new deputy group leader.

Lucy Messer has replaced Karen Smith at the pre-school and has been busy getting to know the children.

The group meets weekdays from 9.15am to 11.45am and on Wednesday afternoons for the rising fives.

Recently the group enjoyed a visitor from Japan who explained some of the culture of her country to the children and gave a demonstration of origami.

The children then made paper helmets under her supervsion.

Enquiries for registration at the pre-school can be made by contacting Debbie Ray on 01225 834316

Bath Chronicle (Extract from the March 2001 Parish Magazine)

I have to announce that, as from about the end of March, I will cease to be the local correspondent for the Bath Chronicle. For the past four years I have been sniffing out stories to report, and have been invited to make up news items by many co-operative residents of Wellow. However, much as I enjoy this sideline, lately I have found it to be at the expense of other necessary activities of life. Not just that, but my means of communication to the newspaper are far from satisfactory in view of the ‘need for speed’. Ideally I should use e-mail or fax, but I have neither and I don’t want to spend in excess of £1000 just to join the 21st Century for what one could hardly call a part time job! Fortunately I have been able to locate a successor. Mrs. Kate Rowe who in fact was Chronicle Correspondent for a short while before me, has kindly agreed to carry on after me. Please make a note of her name and number 01225 835954.

I thank everyone who put up with my enquiries and who have given me of their time during the last four years, and I sincerely hope that you will be kind enough to let Kate know what is happening in Wellow. Remember - the Chronicle is happy to print stories about almost anything that is happening in our village. Are you celebrating a very special wedding anniversary, a 100th birthday, undertaking a fund–raising project, business development, indulging in community affairs, at loggerheads with bureaucracy, etc. etc.? The list is endless. Again thank you for your co-operation, and good luck to Kate.

Alan Taylor 827894


Despite the Planning Officers for B&NES trying desperately to recommend that our Village Shop banner be refused planning permission the Local Councillors on the development control sub-committee rallied to our aid and APPROVED the sign. We are particularly grateful to Gitte Dawson, our Local Councillor, for her vigorous support in supporting our application. It is only a shame that the Planning Officers are not so committed to the enforcment of planning infringements by Mr. Rothschild at the Signal Box, Wellow!!!

Article from the Bath Chronicle - Wednesday January 31 2001

Amateur dramatics

Wellow: Winter blues can be forgotten for a short while when Wellow Amateur Dramatic Society puts on its winter show next month, writes Alan Taylor, Chronicle correspondent.

Members will be staging a double bill of plays on Thursday, Friday and Saturday February 22, 23 and 24.

The main one is a one-act comedy crime caper by Agatha Christie called "Afternoon at the Seaside". Guys and girls in appropriate swimwear mingle with senior citizens in shirts, jumpers and slacks on the beach under an imaginary sun, while a cops-and-robbers plot unfolds.

Mary Messer is producer-director as well as taking a leading role in the play. The supporting production is a mini pantomime called "Forty Winks Beauty", written by Richard Tydeman. as the title implies, the play is based on the more traditional plot of Sleeping Beauty and gives the younger members of the WADS a chance to entertain. Mike Brain is producer-director.

Tickets cost £3.00, children £2.00 and go on sale at the Parlour Shop, Wellow on Monday 5th February.

LOST/FOUND (15/01/2001)

Ladies/girls chic watch with leather strap - found near St. Julian's Church

Call at the Parlour Shop to view or collect if you know who owns it?

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