Summer 2023 Newsletter
As summer starts to fade away and autumn approaches, the nights grow longer and the temperatures get cooler, we wonder what happened to those promised ‘plumes of scorching heat’ that were meant to arrive in July and August. They may have been present in southern and central Europe, but appear to have missed us completely. Nevertheless, the lack of scorching heat came as a blessing as we had a lot of work going on in the shop and didn’t have to use the new air conditioning very much at all. So what has been going on since we last updated you?
- Paul Hagger: Firstly, we are pleased to report that we now have a new Chairman - Paul Hagger. Paul joined the Committee last year and has been instrumental in organising most of the structural and repair work that has been undertaken in the shop over the last 18 months.
- Robert Guilbert: Having served as our Secretary for the last 18 months, Robert has taken on the vacant Treasurers role.
- Michael Bennett: Michael has now taken over from Robert as our new Secretary.
- Linda Crawford: We thank Linda for taking on the role of Acting Chair since Peter our last Chairman left us in March 2022. Linda however remains a valued member of our Committee.
- Vacancies: It is good to once again have our key office holder positions filled. However, we still have 2 vacant positions on our Committee, so if any of you are interested in joining, then please let Paul or Michael know (firstname.lastname@example.org) and they will be pleased to discuss this with you. We have many volunteers and customers providing opinions and advice, but it would be good to see some of that turned into actions by volunteering to join the Committee! We are specifically looking for skills in retail sales, marketing, communications and social media.
We have finally completed the biggest project the shop has undertaken since we re-opened all those years ago in 2008. Many of you who visit us regularly will have seen the new kitchen through its various stages of build and put up with the disturbance such work inevitably causes. This wasn’t a simple replacement of the existing kitchen as the works included:
- Insulating the walls and new plastering;
- Installing a new floor and new tiling;
- Moving the water supply;
- Installing new electrical equipment,
- Purchasing a new freezer, bread oven, crockery and cutlery.
In addition, now that the sink and dishwasher have been moved out of the office, we have taken the opportunity to review the space available and maximise storage and desk working capabilities. Thanks must go to Paul for project managing this work, who without his knowledge, drive (and patience!), it may never have happened.
We now have a kitchen that is really fit for purpose and are delighted with the result which we hope will serve us well for many years to come. Pictures of the new kitchen can be found at the foot of this update.
Repairs and Maintenance
The kitchen isn’t the only work that has been carried out recently. For those of you that visit the shop, have you ever looked upwards at the ceiling? A new loft hatch and surrounding wood work has been installed and decorated which will prevent any further collapses to the ceiling.
A new soakaway has been installed to take the rainwater from the storeroom. On digging the soakaway, our builder discovered the remains of various small animal bones and cobbles from what appears to be a path that used to run across the boundary of the shop. Alongside those were some bricks which we believe are over a hundred years old.
Invisible to most is the new door frame for the kitchen / courtyard door and hopefully more visible is the front shop window now cleaned of the sticky tabs that were plastered all over it from successive notices being sellotaped thereon.
Whilst we still have other works that we will be planning to undertake this year e.g. outside decorating, we will be taking a pause for any new work until the new year at least to give time to reflect on what we have undertaken this year and look at our priorities ahead.
- Afternoon Tea: Away from the structural matters, our volunteer, Brenda Barber organised an afternoon tea in July. Having marshalled her army of volunteers, who baked scones, cakes, made sandwiches and provided cake stands and other crockery, an enjoyable afternoon was had by all. Eating through the mountains of food meant no-one went away hungry, nor hopefully counting the calories! Following the success of this event, we will be looking to hold more, so keep an eye on our website where you will also find some pictures of our happy customers: https://www.tewinvillage.co.uk/village/tewin-stores/tewin-stores-news/
- Saturday Lunches: Last year ahead of her visit down under, Linda Crawford ceased doing her monthly Saturday lunches. By popular demand, these have now been re-instated with the next lunch being held on Saturday 23rd September. Details will be placed on the Tewin Village website: https://www.tewinvillage.co.uk/calendar/item/49741061. All the food is home made and provides a good opportunity to have some simple lovely food at an incredibly low price as well as meeting new (and for some old) friends.
- Café: And just a reminder that we are now back up and running with our café (the menu is on our website https://www.tewinvillage.co.uk/village/tewin-stores/cafe-and-tea-garden/), so please come in and enjoy our food. Also, if you have workmen in for short or longer term work, please recommend the shop to them – whether it is just drinks, a bacon sandwich or a full English breakfast – they won’t get anything as good as we provide in the mainstream chain coffee shops.
- Volunteers Party: Following on from the Volunteers festive event held last December, we held a summer garden party for our volunteers in August kindly hosted by Paul and Diane Hagger in their garden. Whilst the previous day was decidedly wet, the sun came out and provided us with a lovely British summers day (they really do exist!). Once again it was great to see the majority of our volunteers there fortified with Michael’s special Pimms and a generous buffet.
A mention of course to the many people that provide their goods and services to the shop for free. We have recently been the recipients of some fine home grown fruit and veg which doesn’t hang around – it is all bought very quickly.
And on the subject of volunteering, we are looking for some additional volunteers to join our existing team. Without the time and support of our volunteers, we couldn’t continue to operate and of course a new kitchen now awaits! Even if you aren’t interested yourselves, please spread the word. Helping out in the shop is a great way of meeting new people and becoming a bigger part of our wonderful village life.
Finally as always, we wish to thank Bev, our Store Manager for her commitment in running our shop and organising our team of volunteers.
Our new Kitchen fitted August 2023