Overtons Free Newspaper - issued monthly to over 600 homes in Overton
The Editorial Team
Alan Edwards - David Burton
- Ken Farrell - Lesley Pugh - Christine Stead
Our reporters cannot be everywhere.
If you have a story contact
any team member or ring 01978 710422
CANON VALERIE JONES TO RETIRE
After a period of 6 years, Valerie Jones will be retiring from her position as Rector of Overton St.Mary's, Erbistock and Penley and as Dean for the Maelor area. The date of retirement has been set for the end of June, 2004, although a decision has not yet been taken as to who will replace Valerie.
Valerie has been the first lady to fill this demanding position, looking after the parishes of Overton, Erbistock, and Penley.
In addition to providing spiritual direction and leadership to the Christians in the area, Valerie has baptised over 100 babies, and convened at innumerable funerals and weddings in her 6 year period in Overton.
Valerie says "It has been a privilege to be beside people at sensitive times in their lives". She has the satisfaction of more letters and tokens of appreciation from people in local parishes than in any of the others she has served in.
Valerie is a remarkable lady - she was called to the ministry at the age of 48 when she undertook a course leading to a degree in Divinity at Bangor University.
Following ordination in 1985, she served in several parishes - Holyhead, Porthmadog and the Ceiriog valley.
became a Canon in 2001 - the first woman Canon in the Church of Wales
- quite an honour.
She says: "The joys of the position have been many, including:
- The worship of God with fellow Christians
When asked what achievements she is proud of, she replies modestly that just fulfilling her duty to make the appropriate service available when people need the church.
However, in her conversation it is clear that she does derive a lot of satisfaction from introducing a ministry of prayers for the sick and she also speaks warmly of the efforts to maintain the fabric of the church which is so close to her heart, particularly :
the millennium stained glass windows ( with community input )
Valerie's husband, Canon Hywyn, who has been extremely active in helping Valerie, can't wait for her to retire - "I never see her" , he says, "she's fulfilling church duties day and night."
They are going to live in Ruabon, but their love of the church itself and the friendships they have made, ensure that they will not be strangers to Overton. They will be sadly missed by the Christian people of Overton, in particular, and in all the other parishes in the Maelor.
Ed: Members of the Oracle team, on behalf of the community, extend their best wishes to Valerie and Hywyn in their retirement.
10th Anniversary of Twinning Partnership
This year sees the 10th anniversary of the twinning link between Overton and La Murette, France. The event will be celebrated by a re-affirmation of the Charter which was entered into at special ceremonies both here and in France in 1994. 'Twinning Week' this year will be from 2nd - 9th August when Overton is expecting to receive 26 visitors from La Murette. In the meantime, the Association is preparing a varied programme for the week, which will include several outings, a special performance by young children of the village, and the international boules competition.
would like to thank the people who vandalised our car by the Scout
hut on the 16th March. We have a 4 month old baby and are thrilled
to have yet more expense to contend with this month.
Now.... our car isn't the newest in the village, it certainly isn't the best looking, but it's our faithful work horse and we love it!
So we will be looking forward to donations from the vandals for the damage caused. This whole incident leaves us very sad, especially as we think a lot about the village and its occupants.
am sure the community as a whole will be disappointed to learn that
the Highways Authority has, yet again, thwarted another of the Community
Council's attempts to make the village safer. There will be no introduction
of a 40mph speed restriction from the Argoed Lane junction on Wrexham
Road to the existing 30mph limit since this stretch of road does not
fulfil the required parameters.
every single member of the community consulted their conscience would
they be able to promise, 'hand on heart' that they themselves drive
into the village at a sensible speed?
Even if you are driving at less than 30mph are you still driving safely? I mean driving down School Lane at 29mph may be within the letter of the law, but can you honestly say it is a safe thing to do?
If you slowed down to 40mph at Argoed Lane before entering the village would it make you hugely late, or would it mean that if there were a pedestrian crossing the road to take the foot path down to the river, or a lorry driving in the middle of the road round the next bend, you might just be able to avoid hitting them?
In the words of the recent TV campaign, 'Kill your speed, not a child', and yes that means everyone who drives into the village including YOU.
If WE want a safer village, WE have to be prepared to do something about it!
Councillor J Kember
Ed: The Community Council has recently asked whether 40mph "advisory" speed limits similar to those found in Shropshire can be imposed on Wrexham Road from Argoed Lane, and outside the Trotting Mare Inn, Knolton,
by Constable Darren King
There were reports in the media recently about cash point crime, where organised criminal gangs are targeting machines to obtain PIN numbers and card details, and then subsequently emptying bank accounts. I do not think for one minute that this type of crime will spread to here, but you should always be on your guard when using cash points in more urban areas, and especially the big cities.
The news reported the latest scam where a device is placed onto the exterior of the machine, glued over the card slot. As you put your card in, the device, which is a small box and is very hard to distinguish from the rest of the cash machine, copies the serial number of your card. Then as you punch in your PIN number, a member of the gang will be stood near to you and memorises it. This is known as 'shoulder surfing', where they will either memorise the number or enter it into their mobile phone, making you think they are just sending a text etc. Gangs have also been known to place minute cameras onto the machine or nearby for this purpose also.
The worst thing about this scam is that you are not usually made suspicious
as you get to use the cash point as normal, and even though you may
notice someone stood close watching you who may have seen your PIN
number, you think your money is safe as you are still in possession
of your card. Unfortunately this is not the case. Within half an hour
a copy of your card will have been made and as much cash as possible
will have been stolen from your account. This could also go on for
days if you do not check your account balance regularly. I am sorry
that I cannot give you a better description of this type of device,
but there is not one 'set design', and as I stated above, it looks
like part of the machine.
Further to this, the other popular deception of this type that has not been publicised so widely is called 'the Lebanese loop'. This entails a 'V' shaped piece of plastic being placed into the card slot. You place your card into the slot not knowing, and punch in your number whilst being observed as above. But the plastic 'V' prevents the card from entering the machine, and you just think that the machine has 'swallowed your card'. Then while you go off to inform your bank, the gang member will retrieve your card and the plastic 'V', and then use your card to steal your money.
To help you contact your bank/ building society for this or any other type of offence, or if you lose your cards, here are the current contact details held by the police for each company.
ABBEY NATIONAL - 08459 724 724. ALLIANCE AND LEICESTER - 0500 313 233. BANK OF IRELAND - 00 353 1283 5019. BANK OF SCOTLAND - 0845 300 0344. BARCLAYS BANK - 0870 154 0154. BRITANNIA BUILDING SOCIETY-01538 399 135. CAPITAL ONE BANK - 0800 952 5458. CLYDESDALE BANK - 0990 168 654. CO OP BANK - 0845 600 6000. EGG - 01268 298 807. HALIFAX - 0345 203 099. HFC BANK - 0800 737 737. HSBC - 0870 540 0500. LLOYDS TSB-0800 096 9779. MBNA - 0800 062 062. NATIONWIDE - 0345 302 010. NAT WEST - 08706 000 459. ROYAL BANK OF SCOTLAND -08706 000 459. YORKSHIRE BANK - 0990 168 654. AMERICAN EXPRESS - 020 7633 6105.
King, Constable 1360.
I SPY WITH MY LITTLE EYE
"Gentlemen do not read each other's mail", said Henry Stimson, U.S. Secretary of State back in 1931 when he banned the further deciphering of foreign secret messages. With this high-minded principle he stands quite alone in history.
The recent revelations by Clare Short of naughty goings-on by the respective Intelligence communities of this country and the U.S.A. have made for interesting newspaper reading and T.V. viewing. That there has been substantial bugging of the General Secretary to the United Nations should not have come as too great a surprise to anyone, least of all Kofi Annan who, despite his strenuous protests, must have been aware that this sort of activity has been commonplace for a very long time indeed.
How they do it, is what intrigues me. Gone are the days of relying on Mata Hari-type pillow talk or even hiding mini microphones inside telephones and under the carpet. Modern spooks use powerful uni-directional microphones which they point at open windows and they can even hear through closed ones by translating into speech the minute vibrations caused by sound waves on glass. Most vulnerable, though, is the humble mobile phone which can be used as a very effective bug merely by being left switched on. By simply tuning into the communications satellites security services can overhear anything and everything.
All this effort, however, must cost vast amounts of money. As you would expect, I have a much cheaper solution, but first let me retell a Cold War story.
In a small Welsh village a certain KBG agent was trying to locate a sympathetic local he had been instructed to contact and was furtively describing him to the landlord of the village pub. "Ah," said the landlord as realisation dawned, "You're looking for Jones the Spy".
Here then is my cut-price intelligence service. Simply move the United Nations HQ from New York to any village (and Overton would do as well as any other) and there would be no need for expensive equipment. A quick chat around the pub, the Club, the Post Office or the village shops and everything worth hearing would be quickly revealed. Don't say I am not brimming with brilliant ideas!
wins the Grand National with local horse
The Grand National Handicap Steeplechase takes place each spring at Aintree on the outskirts of Liverpool. The course is 4 miles 856 yards from start to finish and contains 30 obstacles. First run in 1839 at Aintree, each winner is feted as a hero and there are many tales of exceptional courage and bravery. There has been one triple winner, the legendary Red Rum and seven dual winners. One of the seven was Poethlyn owned by Mrs Hugh Peel of Bryn-y-Pys, Overton, trained by Harry Escott at Lewes in Sussex and ridden by Ernest Piggott, grandfather of Lester Piggott.
Poethlyn's first win was in 1918 in the third of three wartime substitute races, but which maintained the unbroken continuity of the race from 1839. Aintree, having been taken over by the War Office late in 1915, the National was transferred to Gatwick, the site of the present airport. There were seventeen runners for the race run over the full National distance, Poethlyn winning by four lengths. The following year the race was restored to its rightful place with Poethlyn installed as a hot favourite at 11/4, despite the fact that he had the welter burden of 12st 7lbs. on his back.
Again ridden by Piggott he was a ready winner in a field of twenty two, eleven of whom got round, fully justifying the confidence of his supporters and joining the elite who had won in successive years. It was Poethlyn's ninth victory in succession.
He was bred by the owner's husband, Major Hugh Peel, who had bought the dam Fine Champagne at auction for twenty five guineas. Mated with Rydal Head, the foal had been sold to a Shrewsbury hotelier for seven guineas.
Poethlyn was bought back by Major Peel for fifty guineas and the promise of the first salmon he caught on the river Dee that year and given by the Major to his wife. Born in 1910, Poethlyn died in 1940 aged thirty. He is remembered today by a row of eight houses in School Lane Overton named Poethlyn Terrace.
In 1937 each tenant of Bryn-y-Pys Estate was presented with a signed print by Major Peel. It shows Poethlyn standing in the park in front of the Hall together with a greyhound Bryn Truthful, the winner of the 1934 coursing classic the Waterloo Cup and owned by Major Peel. Poethlyn was buried, along with Bryn Truthful, in the grounds of Bryn-y-Pys Hall
A Brief History
THE CHURCH OF ST. MARY THE VIRGIN, OVERTON
Overton's Yew Trees
As the old rhyme tells us these are one of the Seven Wonders of Wales.
Rhaiadr and Wrexham Steeple,
They probably became famous because of the number of them and their obviously great age. Difficult as it is to date them, it is thought that the oldest may be more than two thousand years old. Tradition has it that if one died it was always replaced and the baptismal register tells us that in 1836 'in the 7th year of the reign of King William IV, two Yew trees, the gift of Mr. Charles Studley, were planted, one near the lych gate and the other near the porch'. This latter was removed but the one near the lych gate flourishes.
Several reasons have been put forward for the planting of Yew trees in Churchyards:
1. In medieval times, bows were made of Yew and warriors of the village would rally to the Church as the stronghold and there find material for their weapons
2. Yew trees are poisonous and in the Churchyard would be out of reach of sheep and cattle
3. They are strong trees and would give the Church some protection from storms.
4. As the Yew is evergreen it could be a symbol of the immortality of the soul. Planted in a burial ground they would serve as a reminder of this.
During the last century a small Yew tree grew in the turret of the tower. It was a constant puzzle to visitors challenged to count the trees. No matter how often they tried, they usually missed this one. However, its roots began to damage the stonework and it was removed and with it the source of many a profitable wager!
Oracle Team Vacancy
Our aim is to provide you with a fresh and stimulating newspaper. To achieve this, the Oracle still requires a new team member to replace Christine Stead who left a short while ago to live in Cross Lanes.
The Oracle is looking for anyone, young or not so young, to assist with the preparation of articles for publication. As a team member you will find it interesting and rewarding. If you feel that you could find two or three hours a month to help out, and would like to become part of the team, we would like to hear from you. Contact Alan Edwards by telephone on 01978 710422 or write to him at 1 St. Mary's Court, Overton, Wrexham, LL13 0FA. You may also e-mail him at editor@.overton-on-dee.co.uk
April 17 - Coffee morning, 11 Sundorne, Overton, 10.30am
May 7 - Village Hall, Quiz Night
June 12 - Summer delight evening at Col. + Mrs Fitzhugh's
July 8,9,10 - Art and Craft Exhibition, St Mary's Church.
It was unfortunate but our news for last month didn't appear in the last Oracle. So we take this opportunity to say that we have changed our evenings to Tuesdays to accommodate some new people. We will stay with Tuesday evening until further notice.
The programme for April is as follows:
6 April no meeting
If you would like more information, or prayer for anything please feel free to call Sue or Arnold on 755909 or Eunice on 710341
and Crafts Exhibition
St Mary's Church will be holding an Arts and Crafts Exhibition in the Church on July 8, 9 and 10.
We would like you to display your work not previously exhibited. If you would like to offer your work for sale, we will take a small percentage of the sale for Church funds. We hope you will support us again this year. Enjoy yourselves preparing your work!
Further details to follow nearer the event.
miracle of Spring has come
wintry snow fell briefly
baby sleeping softly
daffodil proclaims it.
miracle of Spring has come
Overton Medical Practice News
We find it frustrating not being able to help you at times, but it is worth noting that between October and December 2003 a total of 112 patients failed to turn up for their appointments. And they never had the courtesy to telephone or call to cancel, thus making the slot available to others in need.
Please help us by cancelling an appointment that you cannot keep, for whatever reason, so that we can make it available to someone else. Of course that "someone else" could be you when you need to see the doctor quickly. By helping us, we can help you.
It is very important that your records are up-to-date and valid. If you have moved, even locally, or have a new telephone number, please let us know.
PC Daren King, North Wales Police is organising a series of Police Surgeries throughout the Maelor. You are invited to attend and discuss policing matters at Overton Police Station on 30 April 2004 between 6.30pm and 8.30pm.
Can you help?
Norman Knapton, from Ontario, Canada, and as an old resident of Overton (56 years ago) contacted the Oracle by Email to ask if any of our readers can identify the young lady in the photograph who is playing with his son Paul and daughter Judy on the banks of the river Dee at Erbistock in 1955.
He and his wife would appreciate very much any help you can provide. They can be contacted by Email at email@example.com
Alternatively you may contact the Editor at 1 St Mary's Court, Overton, who will forward the information for you.