October happenings

29th October, 2015

Wednesday 30th September.

Last day of September, the sun is still shining and the grapes in the vineyard are beginning to swell. They need something like 150 days of sunshine for a good harvest.
Have just read in the Times of a head teacher at a Primary school in Stirling who for the last three and a half years has ensured that all children run a mile a day. They don’t get out of their uniforms and only ice or heavy rain stops them. Not one of the pupils at the school is obese!
Tim and I donned suits to look at the bees this afternoon. Thankfully looking healthy and strong but because they were a late swarm not too much honey in the hive. We need to feed them overwinter.

Thursday 1st October.

Looking for a chef as James has hurt his knee and has been laid off for now.
Pucklechurch were inspired by St. Ninian’s in Stirling and ran 7 times along the snake first thing this morning. David the head said the children were far more focussed when they came to the first activity. I’ve challenged him to get the children in his school running a mile a day and he’s enthusiastic. After all it doesn’t cost anything and the health benefits are enormous. I emailed the Head of St. Ninians after reading the article and offered to promote the scheme.
Walked with the dogs round by Gants Mill and Trendle lane at lunch time – the trees are turning and the colours are wonderful.

Friday 2nd October.

Pucklechurch School left – they scored 0 waste! The weather is glorious and we are all basking in the sunshine. It does make life easier.

 Monday 5th October.

The Coombes Primary from Berkshire arrived. Again wonderful weather  – all around fives on the evaluation with lovely comments.
Have discovered a way of dealing with crab apples; ‘spicy crab apples’. We only have one tree and it is covered in rosy apples which makes delicious pickle for lamb and pork.

Saturday 10th October.

Mike the Centre Manager ran a sponsored abseil for Bruton Primary from Batcombe Church Tower –  they have raised over £2,000 for the new swimming pool.
(Below) Mike with his five year old daughter Emily coming down from quite a height!! Emily obviously very much trusts her daddy.
An interesting headline. I wondered how parents will take it?
‘Children should play near ‘risky’ cliffs and water to tackle obesity, MPs claim’
Children should play near “potentially dangerous” hazards such as cliffs and water to give them a “feeling of thrill and excitement” and help tackle obesity, a group of MPs and peers will say. A report published tomorrow by Baroness Floella Benjamin will warn that childhood obesity must be tackled by encouraging “better play” amongst children and particularly “risky play” outside.It will warn that traditional playgrounds with “fencing, rubber flooring and bright colours” are too safe and are not “properly challenging” or “exciting”.
Baroness Floella Benjamin has called for more risky play for children.

The report calls for children to be encouraged to take part in “risky play” and recommends that schools do more to get children outside of the classroom.
It states: “Risky play involving perhaps rough and tumble, height, speed, playing near potentially dangerous elements such as water, cliffs and exploring alone with the possibility of getting lost gives children a feeling of thrill and excitement and other accompanying benefits.”The All Party Parliamentary Group publishing the report, led by Jim Fitzpatrick MP, also claims: “It would be desirable for all teachers to spend less time on the didactic ‘delivery of the curriculum’ and more time interacting playfully with children”.It highlights so-called “forest-schools”, which offer more time outdoors in dangerous situations to improve self-reliance and self-confidence in children.
Of course this is what MoB does – encouraging risk taking and getting outside in all weathers and all seasons to have fun.
Disaster has just struck – the beastly badgers have eaten all the grapes in the vineyard despite electric fencing. I estimate probably 600 – 700 bottles! No vintage 2015. Tim, Angeliki & Athol pretty devastated and we have decided we will have to make the vineyard badger proof next year with chain link fencing. Tim has fed the bees to hopefully keep them going through the winter.
Leadenhall school came for the weekend, 0 food waste again! Monday 12th October and 58 Year 6 St. Peter’s School arrived for the week. Again the weather has been glorious, the leaves have turned the most wonderful shades of orange and red. It’s a beautiful time of the year. St. Peter’s also scored 0 waste all week – that’s the fifteenth school this year. Congratulations to all of them and to those who didn’t quite make it but tried really hard.

Tuesday 20th October.

St. Josephs Primary from Portishead and Long Sutton Primary are in and having a fabulous time in the sunshine. Just heard that Ciaran our Chief Instructor has had his operation on his foot today and Chloe is going to go over and see him this evening. Sounds as if it’s all gone well and he’s ok.
Chloe, head of ops and her team are organising a sponsored ‘Row for Rethink’ the mental health charity we are supporting this year on Sunday 29th November from 8am until 10pm. She’s just finished designing the poster so hopefully there will be plenty of volunteers on the day.