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7:28am Monday 28th April 2008 in Tillingham
Anyone wanting to enjoy a walk through woodland which is normally closed to the public can visit Hazeleigh Wood in Lodge Road, Hazeleigh, on Sunday, from 10am to 4pm, entry free.
Follow the small signs into the lane, on the left of the A414 driving from Maldon's Morrisons, towards the Woodham Walter roundabout.
There will be a nature trail for youngsters, a chance for painters and photographers to enjoy the bluebells and plenty of opportunity to speak to the owners and members of TWIG, who plan a woodland project for Tillingham.
Experts from the district council and Essex Arb will also be on hand to deal with any questions on tree management. Those who want to know more about the progress of TWIG can ring 778859 or visit www.twigs.org.uk
A historic event takes place today at St Nicholas church, one that will not be repeated for about another 300 years.
The six bells, two dating from medieval times, are being taken down by an expert from the Whitechapel Bell Foundry, assisted by some of the Tillingham bellringing team.
The bells will be taken away to be renovated while the fittings of the frame in the bell tower are completely replaced ready for their return.
They will be away for about two months, and then it is hoped to have them re-hung in time for three weddings on August 9.
The cost is being met by the Friends of St Nicholas, and a love for the sound of village church bells is a good reason to encourage donations to Michael Tuckett, who manages this fund for maintaining the fabric of St Nicholas. More details of this work appear elsewhere in the paper.
The president welcomed members to the April meeting, especially Jessie, who had been out of action for several months. The speaker, David Reed, then unravelled the mysteries of swan-upping which means "ownership of swans".
He started in 1958, following in the footsteps of other watermen in his family. It was traditional to row wooden boats along the Thames from Sunbury to Abingdon for a week once a year, catching the cygnets and adults and marking their beaks so that ownership was known, but now the birds are ringed on their legs.
He said it was a myth that swans mate for life, and in the past only wealthy people could own them such as the Dyers, Vintners and the Queen.
After questions he judged the competition for a bird ornament which was won by Dorcas, with Anthea second and Zanny third.
Following the refreshments, business began.
Iris read the March minutes and dealt with correspondence. Two ladies volunteered to attend Maplin's party on May 22 and an open day healthy living was to be held at the WI centre on June 21.
There was a vote on the two resolutions for the AGM in Liverpool and Iris was to let the WI link know the result.
Ellen reported on a meeting about the closure of community hospitals.
It was agreed the group would like to be kept informed of progress but nobody could spare time for more militant action.
Raffle prizes had been purchased for the Spring Group meeting and matinee coats and nightgowns for the competition would be taken to the Wednesday Club for judging.
The August outing would be to Elton hall (see below).
The June outing is still undecided, but various ideas were put forward.
There were two raffles and Jessie won the special mug set, with the funds going towards an Essex Room at Denman college, and Sylvia won second prize.
Next month Chris Winter will be talking on "Where there's a will, there's a relative" and the competition will be for something inherited.
As mentioned above, the August outing will be to Elton Hall and Gardens in Peterborough on August 13, leaving The Square at Tillingham at 8am.
The cost will be about £20 each, but obviously much less if the 49- seater coach can be filled. This sum covers entry to the Hall and Gardens, and the trip is open to anyone who would like to go.
Contact Jenny on 778172 or June on 779497 to book a seat.