The Sphere Bus
The Sphere Minibus service (serving Alfrick, Lulsley, Suckley, Leigh and Bransford) was launched on Thursday 2 December 2004. It runs on Friday to Malvern and Saturday to Worcester.
Everyone living in Suckley should have received a timetable. If you don't have one, it is available from Suckley Post-Office and Stores. The bus has room for eleven passengers, and has wheelchair access for two people. A backup taxi service is planned for when the bus is full. The cost is one pound per single trip, but savings can be made by buying a book of ten tickets for five pounds from the Post Office.
Funds have been raised to operate for two years. The timetable will be revised after six months. Please use the service to guarantee its continued existence.
Broadband for Suckley
If you've been following the saga of the campaign for broadband internet access for Suckley, then you'll be pleased to know that a date for the upgrade of the Suckley telephone exchange has finally been announced by BT: 28 October 2004.
If your phone number begins with 01886 884 or if you know that your phone line is served by the Suckley exchange, then "broadband" or "ADSL" internet access will become available on or shortly after this date. The main advantages are medium to fast transfer rates (typically 512kbps download and 256kbps upload speeds, but this depends on the package you sign up for) and an "always on" connection which doesn't block your phone line - hence you can make and receive phone calls whilst connected to the net. If you use the internet a lot, you should find that most ADSL packages offer a significant improvement over ISDN or dial-up access.
To sign up, it's probably best to wait until October. You should then be able to approach any ISP (internet service provider) offering an ADSL or broadband service.
108 people joined Carol Winter-Tear's campaign for broadband internet access in Suckley, BB4Suckley by preordering the service, reaching the target of 100 names needed. Thank you Carol for your work in organising this.
Suckley Harriers junior football club plays at Suckley Playing Fields on the floodlit all-weather and grass pitches.
In September 2004 they intend to enter teams into the local league at Under 12s and Under 11s. Mini-tournaments and friendlies are also planned for the coming months, and they would very much like some new players to join - especially if you're in years 5, 6 or 7 at school in September.
For more information, contact the chairman and treasurer, Mark Smith, on 884485.
Seats for the Playing Fields
Parish Council funds in 2004 have allowed for a seat to be purchased for Suckley Playing Fields. Following an appeal to local businesses, two more seats have been sponsored - by A & P Griffiths and Courtyard Designs - and some funding towards installing the seats has been offered by Select Research. When weather permits, the seats will be fitted on concrete plinths, also housing a dustbin for rubbish, and it is hoped that both will prove useful to users of the Playing Fields.
Rural Bus Service
Suckley Parish Council has begun serious talks with other parishes to try to get extra transport into Malvern or Worcester in the evenings, so that people can get into these places to enjoy the entertainment on offer. It's going to be necessary to join forces and apply for grant funding and there is much ground work to be done, in what looks like a short space of time. However, you can be assured that your Parish Councillors are working hard and will do their utmost to bring this scheme to fruition if it is at all possible.
Appointing a Lengthman
Suckley Parish Council has been assured of a two thousand pound grant from Worcestershire County Council to fund a lengthman, but will not be able to appoint anyone until after 1 July 2004. The Highways Partnership Unit and the Worcestershire County Association of Councils are drawing up schedules and model agreements, and setting up a training scheme. When all this is in place, it will be possible to go ahead with the scheme.
The Parish Council has a working party 'on the job' in close contact with District Councillors and the Housing Initiatives Officer, and is hopeful of another scheme in Suckley in the not too distant future.
Holloways at the Chelsea Flower Show
Local business Holloways has been awarded a stand at the Chelsea Flower Show in London for the second year running. In 2004 Holloways will be displaying solely garden furniture and antiques. You can see the company's range of garden furniture at holloways.co.uk and Holloways' garden antiques are available at agos.co.uk - the company's online antiques catalogue - which was launched at Chelsea in 2003.
All-change at the Post Office
Following our retirement from Suckley Post Office and Stores, we would like to thank all our friends and customers who contributed so much to making the last nine years as proprietors of Suckley PO so pleasurable and happy.
Thank you also for the overwhelming cards, good wishes, and last but not least, the Cross Keys evening and presentation. It is with some sadness that we have had to leave Suckley. But we very much hope that we will maintain connections with the village through friends and social functions. A special thankyou to Liz Eades and Ronnie Cale who went to so much trouble to arrange the Cross Keys evening.
We both wish Roger and Barbara Blackburn every success at Suckley Stores and hope that they will be as happy as we have been.
Linda and Brian Harvey