Vicar’s Letter June Parish Magazine

I wonder what it must be like to be a refugee? … a long way from home and maybe without any prospect of ever returning? It must be awful to live in flimsy accommodation as an unwanted “guest” in a foreign land and treated with suspicion and mistrust.

Refugees are so often vilified – not that people aren’t sympathetic to their plight – it’s just that no-one really seems to want them!

This was the plight of the holy family two thousand years ago. They had to flee brutal persecution and live in Egypt for a while. We don’t know what life was like for Mary and Joseph, but they will have experienced some of the difficulties of modern day refugees.

We can say, from the safety of our “castles”: “it shouldn’t happen” – but it does and is likely to go on whilst ever human kind exists and whilst ever wars and natural disasters continue to happen – so how about us rising to a more positive attitude?

15th-21st June is Refugee Week and this year’s theme is: Celebrate! The organisers want to encourage us to celebrate our diversity and all that each of us can bring to our communities and places of work and socialisation. Rather than suspicion and mistrust, we as Christians should be taking a lead in building bridges and finding common ground. There is so much to be gained in learning from each other.

Many of the heroes of the Bible (Abraham, Moses, Daniel, etc) were strangers in a foreign land – but God brought great blessing through their lives. As and when people of different cultures and experiences come among us – may we be ready to welcome and received from them in a true spirit of generous humanity.

Talking of which, we look forward to welcoming Bishop Geoff, who is coming to Madeley and Betley on Mon 22nd and Tuesday 23rd June. He will be our guest of honour at a Joint BBQ (6.30pm) at The Old Vicarage, Madeley. Bishop Geoff will be meeting all of the young people in our local schools and sharing some of his life experiences. Please do join him and us.

Peter Chantry


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Tidy Group Minutes: 8th June 2015

Madeley Tidy Group
Minutes of Committee Meeting on 8th June 2015
Present Chris Machin, Sue Machin, Anne Shaw, John Berrington, Anne Nicholson , Alan Woodhouse, Maria Thomlinson ,Andy Capewell .
Apologies: Helen Dutton, Roy Dutton.
Minutes of last meeting on 27th April 2015 accepted as a true record; proposed by Chris Machin ; Seconded by Alan Woodhouse
Matters Arising:
Welcome to Anne Nicholson, our latest new member.
Chris has spoken to Simon White about a suitable position for a bin near the weir.
The chip shop sign has now been moved to a more suitable position.
Andy to arrange printing of the new leaflet. £75.00 for a 1000.
Consider posting with the conservation leaflet.
Andy to order new signs at a cost of £45.71
Seven people from the Tidy group attended the Communities day. Over 1hour litter pick .Children from the Meadows school also took part. Linda Berrington did a litter pick earlier due to other commitments.
The balance on the 8th June £806.37
We have had a contact on Facebook from Lizzie Stuart, who graduates this year in Wildlife Conservation & Ecology & is looking for volunteer opportunities in Madeley when she returns home later this month.
While she may not be interested in litter picking or gardening, I have suggested she may want to use her qualifications with our group by, for instance, compiling a report with ways of reducing our carbon footprint for the IT’s Your Neighbourhood Competition and suggesting ways of making our flower beds more wildlife friendly. It’s a win-win because we get qualified advice and she will get a glowing testimonial from us for her CV. I also mentioned Staffordshire Wildlife Trust may be of interest to her and that one of our volunteers is also a volunteer with SWT.
We have replaced our tidy group sign in the long trough after it was removed. However, it was the last one and so we do need to order some more.
The last property news in the Evening Sentinel had a focus on Madeley and the cover photo was of the new planter on Bevan Place, with our name and logo centre stage.
Anthea Bourne has requested photos of the tidy group litter picking for the Parish Council Newsletter, unfortunately I don’t have any and wondered if Andy C could send some of the Communities Day photos on to her?
Chris Machin
We’ve once again registered with the RHS It’s Your Neighbourhood 2015 Campaign and their assessor, Donna Loades, is coming to assess us on Monday, July 20th at 2.00pm. With this in mind we have continued gardening on a weekly basis focusing on one particular area.
Last year the Areas for development in the assessors report were:
1. Install the new planters at the village entrances
2. Replace the memorial tree
3. Consider engagement and involvement with the local schools
One and two have been achieved, but we may need to do further work on number three.
The daffodils in the Vicarage Lane Bed has been cut back, ready for geraniums and antirrhinums to be planted by Elmside as soon as possible.
Chris & I are away from June 18th to July 2nd, so could you all keep an eye on any of the planters or new plants and water them if necessary?
Alvery Stanley from Elmside has looked at the long trough with a view to repairing it but has advised that leaving it to the autumn would be advisable, so as to avoid too much disturbance of the plants.
Linda Berrington has found an article that says that bedding plants often have little pollen or nectar available for insects which supports our policy of investment planting with perennials.
Don from Cygnet close has volunteered to look after one of the flower beds and to donate the plants.
If anybody would like to go on a guided daffodil walk next spring at Whitegate, Vale Royal, please contact Len Thomlinson via Maria.
Sue Machin
Litter Picking:
If you see any litter build up, please report it to Street scene on 01782-742500 or
Next litter pick will be on the 27th June 2015.
Future Plans:
Bug Houses for the beds to be left on the agenda and possibly sited in the autumn.
“Summer at the Centre “is on August the 16th. Ideas required
Renewal of the Long trough. Possibility for the autumn?
Contact Simon Long for soil improver.
Madeley beer festival is on between the 9th and 12th July 2015.
DATE OF NEXT MEETING: 20th July 2015; 7.30 in the café area at The Madeley Centre.
Present; Apologies; Minutes of Previous Meeting; Matters Arising; Treasurers Report; PR & Sponsorship Report; ; Gardening Report; Litter Picks; Recycling; Future Plans; AOB; Date of Next Meeting.

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Summer Holiday Activities

Madeley Parish Council presents a full programme of Summer Holiday activities for children aged 7-13 years at Leycett Cricket Club.

For further information, and to book your place follow the link below.

Summer Holiday Activities 2015

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Smoke Alarms Reminder and Safety Check!

Now is a good time to remember to check your smoke alarms!

The Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service have a number of useful items, including their new Push The Button campaign which has a handy email sign up which will send you a reminder to check your alarm.

Free smoke alarms, including specialist alarms and equipment can be fitted as part of a free home fire risk check which you can book by calling FREEPHONE 0800 0241 999.


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Walks around Madeley

Madeley has a lovely range of footpaths, roads, and lanes, with a wide range of nature environments from hills, woods, stream and lakeside, and plenty of nice views to be had!

Originally posted by Capto (and collated into a single doc by Steven Wye) here is a list of some walks along with maps, waypoints and points of interest in a PDF document here for you to download and print:  MadeleyWalks-2015


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Parish Council Election Results

Please follow the link below for the results of the elections for Madeley Parish Council held on Thursday 7th May 2015

MadeleyParish Council Results

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Tidy Group Minutes from 27/4/15

Madeley Tidy Group

Minutes of Committee Meeting on 27th April 2015

Present Chris Machin; Sue Machin; Anne Shaw; John Berrington; Alan Woodhouse

Apologies: Helen Dutton, Roy Dutton, Ricki Williams, Andy Capewell.

Minutes of last meeting on 16th March 2015 accepted as a true record; proposed by Chris Machin ; Seconded by Alan Woodhouse

Matters Arising:

Possibility of a new bin to be placed at the long trough.

Billy to speak to Poolside chip shop about the sign on the side of the road.

Treasurers Report: Balance as of 31st March £1160.59

Letter received fron the Co op ban k stating there will be no interest paid on the account.

Photographs and receipts for the Community chest (£400)required .These need returning to Newcastle Borough council.

ACTION. Sue to see Elmside for a receipt.


New leaflet produced by Andy Capewell looks great. Many thanks

Chris will liaise with Andy re cost for printing of the leaflets.

The 2015 Communities day is on the 5th June.1 hour starting at 10.00am. Clearing the Hymalasian Balsam is on the agenda , depending on how many people are interested.

ACTION .Sue to email Tidy group members and other interested parties.


A section of public footpath at Madeley Heath has been re seeded with grass seed.

New Primulas and Azaleas have been planted in the Crewe arms bed and around the wheel monument.

New plants have also been planted in the Greyhound bed.

New plants will also be bought for the Vicarage lane bed.

Maria and Anne have done a stock take of all the flower beds and Anne has donated some of her own plants. Thank you.

Anne and Maria have also dead headed the daffodils at the Vicarage lane flower bed.

Weed killer is to be sprayed around the base of the new planters.

Litter Picking:

If you see any litter build up, please report it to Street scene on 01782-742500 or

Future Plans:

Register for the RHS its your neighbourhood scheme by the end of May .

Bug Houses for the beds to be left on the agenda and possibly sited in the autumn.



DATE OF NEXT MEETING: 8TH June 2015; 7.30 in the café area at The Madeley Centre.

Present; Apologies; Minutes of Previous Meeting; Matters Arising; Treasurers Report; PR & Sponsorship Report; ; Gardening Report; Litter Picks; Recycling; Future Plans; AOB; Date of Next Meeting.

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Vicar’s Letter: May Parish Magazine

It’s not a very male thing to say but … I love singing! Most men wouldn’t admit to it – but I really like singing because it lifts me out of myself – whether I’m travelling along in the car or joining in with others in church.

Music and singing help us to get in touch with and transcend our emotions and feelings. Very often there are things going on in our lives that drag us down. But open your mouth and start singing and somehow a song can express something from deep inside which helps us to put things in perspective.

Singing in a group is really good. When you sing in a choir or alongside others in a congregation you add your own unique contribution. As you add your voice, so you become part of something bigger and beyond yourself. Collaboration with others can bring a great release to you and your fellow singers. You don’t even need to be very good at singing – just taking part and adding your small voice is all that is needed.

Singing worship songs or sacred music is especially wonderful and potentially life-changing, mainly because it put us in touch with God our Father, but also because it reminds us of bigger realities than the issues that dominate our own agendas. It may not seem very obvious to sing praises to God when you’re feeling down, but it can do you and your troubled mind, no end of good. It is amazing how singing about God’s love can help us with all our problems and difficulties.

Songs and singing are very important. It’s great to appreciate the talents of others as we sing alongside them and having fun in singing great songs is so often a tonic.

So, can I commend to you the Betley Church Choir and the Simply All Sorts Community Choir as two local examples of wonderful places to join in the singing – I know you will be very welcome but if you haven’t got time for a weekly choir practice, then there is always Sunday service – to which you are most especially welcome.

Peter Chantry


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Vacancy for Birch Dale Play Area Swing Security

Madeley Parish Council wishes to appoint a parishioner to be responsible for locking the Birch Dale Play area swings overnight and unlocking them every morning. The person will also keep the play area in a tidy state.

Follow the link below to download an application form and see the post specification.

Post Spec Swing Security April 2015    Swing Security Application Form

Please note that the closing date for applications is 5:00pm, Friday 8th May 2015

For further information please e-mail the Parish Clerk, Jan Simpson on 07563660298 or e-mail


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Vicar’s Easter Letter

The finest Cadbury’s can offer?

I’ve been looking at buying Easter Eggs but I must confess I find it difficult to spend £5 on an Easter Egg when you could get the same amount of chocolate for a quarter of the price!  … Mean? … Well perhaps … especially when we realise that Easter is about our generous God who is extravagant in His love and forgiveness.

The events of Holy Week (Jesus’ unfair arrest, jumped up trial and grotesque crucifixion) should give God every reason for being angry with the human race – but quite the opposite!

Easter Day isn’t about God’s anger but about God’s extravagant love.  Jesus’ death on the cross rather than further dividing us from God’s love is the means of our forgiveness. The disciples’ failure to stick by Jesus doesn’t bring the deserved response from God.

Jesus’ resurrection is the most amazing and wonderful and transforming event in all of history.  What follows the darkest of days (Good Friday) is not retaliation or divine vengeance – but the most glorious of days (Easter Day) with all its promise of forgiveness and new life.

The leader’s jealousy and self-interest had made them get rid of Jesus. And the disciples knew that they had deserted him. But rather than shout and scream at them Jesus speaks words of forgiveness and opens his friends’ minds to God’s miraculous plan: forgiveness of sins and a new start for all!  Death is no longer THE END. Life is no longer a lonely struggle. God is not dead and He promises to be with his friends FOREVER.

So despite my frugality (meanness), I reckon that’s enough of a reason to make me want to buy Cadbury’s finest and share it with anyone and everyone!  A happy Easter to all.

Peter Chantry


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