Friday 24 February 2023


What is the meaning of Candlemas Day?

Candlemas is celebrated on 2 February and marks the return of light, a symbol of protection and prosperity. This Christian festival commemorates the presentation of Jesus at the Temple of Jerusalem, referring to him as the light of the people of Israel.

Alex Fox

Friday 17 February 2023

Driver 308’s Commonwealth Games Adventure - Day 16

 July 19th  2022

Today Ally and I were back working together again. We were also joined by Sharni, one of the Media Ops team. Our planning yesterday evening indicated that tonight’s hotel was on the way from our first drop-off/pickup and to our second drop-off/pickup, so we would be able to stop off there mid-day for some lunch. Or so we thought!.  We left the Hotel at 8:45 for, what has to be the closest collection point and drop-off, the International Centre literally next to the Holiday Inn. The BB segments were around the grounds so whilst Ally was putting them in position I was able to sit relaxing seated in the comfy chairs in the air-conditioned reception area of the Centre. The air conditioning was very welcome as it was it was already very hot, and was to get much hotter.

As we were to be the next Pickup shuttle we departed from the Centre in the convoy positioned behind the Medic’s Defender and made our way to the Harper Adams Agricultural University, and the appropriately named Poultry Drive. Although we had a police escort, it was not blue lighted, a number of cars and vans managed to get themselves in the convoy. The police motorcyclist would then attempt to ‘weed’ them out.

After completing our pickup shuttle duties, and no BBs wanted a lift, we were free to make our way to tonights hotel Yarnfield Park. We were somewhat disappointed when we discovered what Yarnfield Park actually was though. It was a large commercial training centre, with rooms in accommodation blocks and a central admin block with the canteen (not restaurant) and dining hall  - very much like halls of residence at University! What was interesting though was its history.  Between 1939 and 1941 a massive ordnance and munitions facility was built on 1,200 acres of land near the Staffordshire village of Swynnerton. Seven hostels to house the munitions workers were built in the nearby village of Yarnfield. Three of the hostels were taken over by the GPO in 1946 to become a training school for telephone engineers. In continued to be owned by BT until 2010 when it became privately owned. The BT company Openreach still has a training facility at Yarnfield Park.

After having something to eat (crisps and fruit) and a coffee it was time to leave to carry out our afternoon duties in Leek, where once again we were dropoff and pickup at the same place. It’s very unusual to do both roles at the same location. In Leek the BB route was through the centre of the town, the roads had been closed as it involved driving the wrong way round the one-way system, working back to the council offices. At the end of dropping off the BBs to do the pickup it would have been necessary to go around the route again, the roads would have reopened which would have made things rather tricky if not impossible without breaking the law. Luckily none of the BBs needed picking up as it was only a short walk back to the council offices.  

The Sat Nav chose an interesting route from Yarnfield Park to Leek which involved driving through a ford and past a garden with a giant fibre-glass or plastic swan that had been used as feature and planted full of bright flowers. This was really huge – the sort of thing that water parks have as pedalos for people to ride in.

We returned to Yarnfield Park, the crew evening meal and planning tomorrow's activities.

Friday 10 February 2023

Stone Soup

These are some photographs of one of the drama groups in Camphill Milton Keynes performing a play called 'Stone Soup' at the Chrysalis Theatre.

Stone Soup is a European folk story in which hungry strangers convince the people of a town to each share a small amount of their food in order to make a meal that everyone enjoys, and exists as a moral regarding the value of sharing. In varying traditions, the stone has been replaced with other common inedible objects, and therefore the fable is also known as axe soupbutton soupnail soup, and wood soup.

Alex Fox

Friday 3 February 2023

Milton Keynes Dragon Boat Festival

The Milton Keynes Dragon Boat Festival takes place at Willen Lake and up to 48 teams compete over the 200m race course, watched by several thousand spectators. As well as the exciting races, a wide range of bankside entertainment, food stalls and fun activities guarantee a fabulous day out for all the family! 

The Milton Keynes Dragon Boat Festival is mainly aimed at corporate groups who are looking for a great team building day out whilst supporting and raising money for a charity of your choice. Upon entering, you can choose to upgrade your entry package to include a donation to the charity of your choice or you can simply raise funds in your own way!

Alex Fox