36 Winsford Mayor’s Ball 23rd March 2017

Well this was a Mayor’s Ball like no other.

Winsford Town Mayor Steve Smith planned this as part of the Winsford Marchfest, loosely based on the Munich Oktoberfest (which bizarrely takes place mainly in September), for which he was the Chair of the organising group.

We were all invited to enter into the spirit of things by dressing for the occasion: lederhosen or dirndl.

Bavarian Mike

Bavarian Sue

I couldn’t bring myself to don the lederhosen but did my best with a check shirt, red braces and a Bavarian hat.  Sue did so much better, looking absolutely great in her dirndl.  Our Bavarian daughter-in-law says she is entitled to wear it anyway in Germany owing to her German ancestry.

But others certainly did better than me.  The Mayor of Winsford himself could have passed for a visitor from Munich.  The Mayor of Frodsham also managed the full lederhosen.

Bavarian 1

Neston Mayoress Sue Shipman with Mayor of Winsford Cllr Steve Smith

Bavarian 2

Cllr Mallie Poulson, Mayor of Frodsham with Consort for the event

Set in a large marquee on the Marchfest site, the “ball” featured the faux Bavarian Oompah band “Brasswurst” with a number of audience participation numbers which somehow managed to include a beer.  For the meal we had a chice of three types of sausage with sauerkraut followed by strudel or black forest gateau.

A thoroughly enjoyable, if somewhat exhausting, evening.

Bavarian 4

Brasswurst entertains


Neston Town Council Supports Local Voluntary Groups

Neston Town Council has piloted a new programme of small grant awards (maximum £300) to help voluntary groups in the Neston area.

The scheme has been well received and the Town Council has recently made its first small grant awards to a variety of local groups that all share the same goal: supporting their local community and helping Neston residents.

If you would like any further information about the small grant award scheme, or the main grant programme, please contact Audrey Duncan on 0151 363 8024.

35 Village Fair Committee 20th February 2017

It was at one of their regular organising sessions that I was able to meet the Neston Village Fair Committee to present a grant certificate to help sustain this year’s event on 1 July.

Although that was the ostensible reason for the visit, it gave me the opportunity to meet the team behind the event and thank them for the tremendous work they do for the town.  The event has been going for 17 years, providing a focus for local groups, societies and schools to show their talent, and raising over the years around £80,000 for local charities and good causes.

Village Fair

Receiving the cheque is Keith Moores, the Chair, along with 4 other members of the Committee, Susan Ell,

Marie-Louise Reid, Jacqui Eeles and Andy Irvine. Four other members of the Committee were not able to be at the meeting at which the presentation was made.

34 Neston Air Cadets 17th February 2017

It was a privilege to be guest of honour at the Air Cadets’ annual “Dining In” event at Thornton Hall Hotel.  The evening was modelled, unsurprisingly, on the RAF tradition of a squadron mess dining event.  I was able to present an array of awards including those for Best Cadet, Best NCO.

The event was hosted by the CO Flt Lt Paul Thelwell RAFVR(T).  The evening was also paradoxically one of “Dining Out”, as the squadron bade farewell to three members of staff, Lisa Fields, Anne-Marie Mitchell and Mark Mitchell.

Air Cadets 1       Air Cadets 2

Air Cadets 3

33 Visit to Winsford 12th Feb 2017

Sue and I were invited to take a tour of Winsford by Town Mayor Steve Smith and consort Mark Smith.  This was a return fixture from our hosting them for a tour of Neston back in November.

Apart from visits to the Council offices a few years ago, I had never been to Winsford before, other than to pass through it along the A54 to Middlewich and beyond.  That route does not really do the town justice because all you see is a less-than-attractive shopping centre.  But on the way out from the town are the Flashes, three lakes fed by the River Weaver, and formed by the subsidence of surface ground through salt extraction. They are home to a Sailing Club and connect with the canal network and a marina.

We also visited the park areas looked after by the Town Council before enjoying lunch at the Hayhurst Arms.


New Artisan Traders Joining The Historic Friday Market

In addition to our fantastic regular market traders we have a number of artisan traders who have joined us over the past few weeks, more to follow soon!

We also have a small select number craft stalls joining us in the Town Hall, alongside the wonderful Vintage Tearoom from 10th March. 


New Traders A4 Poster