Saturday, 16 June 2018

Guided Bird Walk in Amphitheatre Ciren Wildlife Group

Walk through Cirencester and see it with fresh eyes.

On an uncharacteristically hot and sunny bank holiday weekend, Cirencester Wildlife Group met in the Roman Amphitheatre for a guided bird walk, hosted by Andy Lewis from the North Cotswold Ornithological Society. With temperatures predicted to reach into the low 20’s for both Friday and Saturday the conditions were perfect, and true to form our feathered friends didn’t disappoint.
Friday’s walk began with an unexpected arrival, an Australian couple who had recently arrived in the UK and were looking for somewhere to stretch their legs.
“Aye, you’ll never guess what they are!” – Upon spying Andy’s binoculars.
Strangely enough they were both keen bird spotters from Adelaide and lucky for us they must’ve packed some Aussie sunshine! After a quick trip back to the car they soon returned, binoculars in hand.
After listening to a few songs and calls, and Andy interpreting the morning chorus - “twiit, twiit” nuthatch, “teecha-teecha-teecha” great tit, “tser err-err-err” blue tit – we began our walk.
It wasn’t long before we had our first guest, a great stotted woodpecker, which was heard calling long before it was spotted “tchick…tchick…tchick”. After sitting in the tree for a few minutes, no doubt wondering what we were all staring at, accommodatingly it glided down to a nearby bird feeder so we could all get a closer look – Beautiful!
As we continued on around the amphitheatre we heard and saw many different woodland birds: blackcaps, chiffchaffs and gold crest. We also heard lots of wrens, with their characteristic trill, as well as a few different stories about the birds of Australia. Apparently their robins really do have a red breast, unlike the dusky orange of their British equivalent! But their magpies aren’t actually magpies, think that makes us even.
All kinds of birds inhabit Cirencester!
Strangely enough, for such a warm morning, we didn’t see any birds of prey – that would have to wait until the following morning.
Saturday’s walk started in the same way, the only difference being it was a little warmer and there were no antipodean additions! "pink, pink” chaffinch, “oo-OO-oo” woodpigeon and of course the, by now, unmistakable trill of the wren.
It looked like this walk would also end without any birds of prey but just as Andy was drawing things to a close a sparrow hawk circled overhead and shortly after a long tailed tit flew across in front of us carrying a feather in its beak – a lovely late flourish to end two very enjoyable walks.
Thank you to everyone who came along, we hope you enjoyed it. And thank you to Andy Lewis for volunteering his time to support the Group. If anyone is interested in receiving notifications about upcoming events please email for details.
Mel, Huw and Scott
Cirencester Wildlife Group

P.S. there’s an open invitation to attend an Adelaide Bird Society field meeting, if anyone is looking for an excuse to stretch their legs (or spread their wings)!

Friday, 15 June 2018

Minety Music Festival 2018 29th June-1st July

Minety Music Festival is now in its second year, following on from the fabulous success of 2017, when it was shortlisted in the UK Music Festival Awards ‘Best New Festival’ category.
It is a community ‘not for profit’ 3-day summer music event (run entirely by volunteers) & in 2018 aims to raise funds for the Wiltshire Air Ambulance, Combat Stress and Naomi House & Jacksplace Hospice.
Over 40 bands on 2 stages showcasing local music talent and covering a wide spectrum of music styles with plenty to do and see for the whole family.
Get in the crowd!
There will also be a range of FREE activities in the Kidzone, including slacklining, an inflatable side and assault course, bouncy castles, circus skills workshops and a mobile caving experience. Although the festival hopes for hot weather, it will be fully prepared for all eventualities!
Chesney Hawkes
The main stage will be undercover, so whatever happens, you can stay dry and enjoy a superb weekend of music. You are guaranteed excellent music, a superb wide range of food and a well stocked house bar, Gin & Prosecco Bar and Coktail Bar! Free camping means that you can really embrace the festival atmosphere!
On the “Regent Building” Main Stage
Friday 29th June: Bon Giovi Saturday 30th June: Neville Staple Band Sunday 1st July: Chesney Hawkes

Saturday, 9 June 2018

Cirencester Hypnotherapy Centre: One for the Ladies

Nicola Griffiths hypnotherapist.
One for the ladies…or is it?
I recently found myself in a situation where I absolutely knew I had to take more time for myself.  I run a busy clinic, I have my hypnotherapy clients and I lecture at two schools of hypnotherapy training.  I don’t make life easy for myself as one of those schools is in Belfast and the other in Manchester, so not exactly on my doorstep.  Oh, and that doesn’t include the new school I’m taking on in completely the opposite direction of Southampton!
So considering all this, I found myself smiling to myself as I said to a client the other day “If we run ourselves ragged, we can damage our health and our ability to concentrate.  Our focus can become foggy and we lose sight of what we want to achieve”.  Mmmm, Nicola, you might want to listen to yourself a bit more!
But then I relaxed, as I know I do look after myself in between all the work.  I take time out for things like facials and spa days.  I have regular reflexology and acupuncture which I love.  And I know that we don’t have to put everything down in order to regain that focus, you don’t have to have a week’s holiday to recharge (although I’ve nothing against that obviously).  Even 50 minutes of proper time out can do the brain one heck of a lot of good.  It allows the thought processes to calm and for clarity to emerge.
Sue Drew, the holistic beauty therapist at my clinic calls it ‘Investing in Yourself’.  She says “People get facials for different reasons, and with our busy lifestyles it is not easy to find time for yourself. However in my many years of experience in the beauty industry, without a doubt my clients who have a regular facial look younger and have a lovely complexion”.   Now if that happens, it’s certainly going to do people a power of good!
People incorrectly think of massage, whether a facial massage or a body massage, as a pamper session.  In fact massage is very beneficial for stress and various other symptomology. Even the NHS recognises it has benefits!  
I originally entitled this snippet ‘One for the Ladies’, but then I thought that was wrong.  Because in these modern times, we see more and more men coming in for facials and massages – not just because they need distressing but these days they tend to look after themselves more than they’ve ever done before.  Now there’s a nice topic for my next little article!!
Nicola runs the Cirencester Hypnotherapy & Health Centre in Dyer Street.  Their massage therapists include Sue Drew, Maggie Godden, Sally Peachey, Karen Benbow (Indian Head Massage) and Cheryl Webster. More details at:

What's on at Corinium Museum

Exhibitions and Events
Roman Soldier on a Stick
Family Drop-in
Friday 1 June, 10-11am

Create a Roman soldier on a stick inspired by the Roman army and the kit they carried.

Cost: £2.50 per child, £1.50 for members

Early Man
Family Film Friday
Friday 1 June, 11am

Set at the dawn of time, when dinosaurs and woolly mammoths roamed the earth, Early Man tells the story of how one plucky caveman unites his tribe against a mighty enemy and saves the day!

Cost: £5.60 per adult, £2.70 children
Booking recommended

‘Inside Out’
Exhibition by Anne Boning
7 June – 1 July

Artist and Sculptor, Anne Boning, presents a series of paintings exploring light, shade and colour.

The exhibition comprises a series of more than fifty small watercolour paintings.
The images are an expression of the artist’s innermost thoughts and were painted over a particular period of time.

Free entry

Discover the Archaeology of the Cotswolds
Afternoon Talk with Dr Alison Brookes
Thursday 7 June, 2.30-4pm

The Prehistory galleries of the Corinium Museums are to be transformed during the Stone Age to Corinium Project. Join Dr. Alison Brookes, Collections Development Officer, to explore how the new space will inspire and engage visitors with the archaeology of the Cotswolds.
The talk will offer the opportunity to see a selection of objects which are currently in storage including rare stone tools, the earliest pottery vessels and an array of Bronze and Iron Age metalwork. During this new series of talks Alison will reveal how the objects were discovered and what they tell us about the earliest human occupation of the Cotswolds.

Cost: £7 per adult, £6 members

Battle of the Sexes
Corinium Cinema
Thursday 14 June, 7pm

The electrifying 1973 tennis match between World number one Billie Jean King (Emma Stone) and ex-champ and Bobby Riggs (Steve Carell) was billed as the Battle of the Sexes and became the most watched televised sports event of all time.

Cost: £6.50 per adult, £5.50 concession

The Post
Rural Cinema
Saturday 23 & Sunday 24 June, 2.15pm

In June 1971 The New York Times, the Washington Post and the nation's major newspapers took a brave stand for freedom of speech and reported on the Pentagon Papers, the massive cover-up of government secrets that spanned four decades and four Presidents.

Cost: £5.60 per adult, £4.80 concession
Booking recommended

Dr Valija Evalds – What Are They Wearing?
Evening Lecture
Thursday 28 June, 7-8.30pm

What Are They Wearing? Dr. Valija Evalds explores images of cloth and clothing on medieval and renaissance artefacts in the Corinium Museum Collection. Abbot’s mitres and renaissance ruffs often look exaggerated to the modern eye, as do the shapes of medieval and renaissance bodies. And why would a merchant like John Coxwell wear so much black? Dr Evalds asks what the artists meant to convey when they depicted garments, and what the contemporary audience understood when they saw it.

Valija Evalds has a PhD in art history from Yale University. She has lectured in medieval art history, the history of costume and textiles, the development of illustrated children's books and the history of the home. She has published articles on medieval sculpture and the history of dress. 

Cost: £7 per adult, £6 members
Booking recommended

Please contact us if you would like any further details or images for any of the events that we are holding.

Cirencester Open Air Pool in 148th Year!

No reason not to enjoy the open air pool!

Cirencester Open Air Swimming Pool opens for its 148th Year

Fingers crossed for a gloriously sunny summer in the Cotswolds this year as Cirencester Open Air Swimming Pool gets ready to open its doors for its 2018 season on the 24th May.

The 28 metre pool is now reaching its 148th year and offers swimmers of all ages a chance to swim in natural spring water heated to 27°C. The facility also includes a tuck shop serving a number of hot and cold refreshments, a sunbathing patio area and a smaller paddling pool for children. 

It has been run by a community of lovely and enthusiastic volunteers for a number of years now and they have been working hard ready for the grand opening on the 24th May

This year will see the return of two of the open air pool’s most popular events, the 24 hour charity swim on the 1st - 2nd of September to raise money for the pool and Splash day, a big themed party with burgers and fun activities taking place thorough-out the day – keep an eye on the COASP website for the date.

The pool will also be hosting a Summer Solstice swim on the 21st June at 4:30 am until 6:30am for early risers and two night swims from 10pm to midnight on the 30th June and 4th August for night owls. 

There will be a weekly youth evening every Friday up to 21st July from 7 - 8:30pm for children aged 10 - 17 to enjoy a swim and a splash with their friends.

There will also be parent and toddler sessions available from 10am – 11am during term time including free tea and coffee.

Season tickets will be available to purchase from the pool for: 

Adults £85
Child / Students £50 
Concession £60
Family (2+2) £180
1A & 2C £150 / 1A & 1C £120
(3rd & extra child £30 each) 

Be sure to get yours early to make the most of your summer at the pool.

Thanks to our lovely heated spring water, swimming feels great no matter the weather!

The open air pool will be available for party bookings once again this year on Tuesdays, Thursdays (7 - 9pm) or on Saturday and Sunday (6 - 9pm). Fridays (7 -9pm) available during school holidays. Make sure to book early to get your first choice of date for that special event.

More information can be found online at or call the pool on 01285 653947 from 24th May.  The Pool can also be contacted via facebook

Scores of People Descend on Bathurst Estate in Mass Trespass calling for Land Justice

Protesting on the estate
On Sunday April 22nd about 75 protesters travelled to the Bathurst Estate in Cirencester to participate in a mass trespass, calling for land Justice.

Organised by groups including RisingUp and the Land Justice Network the protest included speeches, songs and a marching band. The protesters marched down the main avenue into the estate and then went to a field marked private and climbed the fence to encircle a tree on the land. A banner also appeared over the main road leading into Cirencester saying “No Justice Without Land Justice”. Lord Bathurst and some of his family and wardens watched the peaceful protests unfold.

The organisers said that Land is an essential resource that our society, culture and economy depend uponHowever, land ownership in Britain is still one of the most unequal in the world. 0.6% of the population owns 69% of the land. More than a third is still owned by the aristocracy whose ancestors seized it during the Norman Conquest and through the use of land trusts they are avoiding paying inheritance tax while maintaining the concentration of ownership to this day. During the enclosures our ancestors were violently thrown off the land and much of our current common land is being privatised.

RisingUp, who helped organise the action, claim that peaceful civil disobedience is an essential tool in changing things for the better. Mass trespasses have achieved successes in the past, such as at Kinder Scout, which helped to provide bring about the right to roam.

The Land Justice Network had called a week of action from April 14th to 22nd to highlight issues of land injustice calling for land rights.

Simon Bramwell, from Rising Up! In Stroud, said “It's especially relevant to undertake a civil disobedience on the Bathurst Estate, much of which is owned offshore while the owner receives vast subsidies from taxpayers. Some of the land is being sold off for mostly unaffordable housing.”

Katharine Hallewell of the Land Justice Network added “Everything flows from the land, our well being, our freedom and our equality. We are still living under a system of landownership handed down from the Norman conquests.” 

Bingham Gallery Made in Cirencester Exhibitition

Art over 200 years

Cirencester Artists - 200 Years of Art Made in Cirencester
This new exhibition, from the collections of the Bingham Library Trust, looks at the work of Cirencester artists who have lived and worked in the town over the last 200 years. It includes some of the very earliest depictions of Cirencester - painted by John Burden and John Evans - both drawing masters.
The exhibition also excitingly presents some works by lesser-known, and rarely displayed, artists in the collection. These include both art-school trained and amateur artists working in the town: the Gibbons family of three brothers who all trained at Cirencester School of Art in the 1860s and 1870s and from the 20th century the Flexen family of painters.
Stunning new acquisitions to the collection will also be on display: a work by 20th century painter Anthony Klitz, known for his often red-clothed figures painted against a misty atmospheric backdrop; a contemporary painting by local artist Tracey Elphick; as well as a large watercolour of the Market Square, dated 1794.
The Trust is also inviting visitors to the exhibition to have their say by adding details of other Cirencester artists.
Shepherds Place, Gloucester Street, Cirencester 1914
by Frank Gibbons
The exhibition is free to visit and will be open on the following times:
Open: alternate Saturdays 26 May – 6 October, 2018, 10.00 to 2.00 (9 & 23 June, 14 & 28 July, 11 & 25 August, 8 & 22 September) and 5 - 7 Sept 11.00 to 4.00 for Heritage Open Days
Bingham Gallery
Bingham House
1 Dyer Street
01285 655646