Update – Outline planning application for up to 160 dwellings including vehicular access

The deadline is fast approaching – 30th January 2019 for this application. There have been over 900 objections so far but we need many more to give weight to our feelings about this development. Many of you have already objected to this development. The Parish council thanks you for this. Please however make a final effort to ask friends, family and neighbours to make that final objection count.

There has been some concern that the Borough have not received or processed some objections. The Parish Council have been assured that all objections will be processed. The Borough are running a backlog. The Borough have stated they will acknowledge every objection individually.

The simplest and easiest way to object is to register at :-have-a-say.co.uk

If you or your friends don’t want to use the internet or feel able to engage with neighbours and friends, please print out a letter from the link below:- 


Door Step Challenge 10 – Gold Lane Development – Part 2


Biddenham History Society – Historical Dance

The January meeting of the Biddenham History Society was both informative and fun. Our speaker, Dr Anne Daye, is an expert on historical dance. She began by giving us an overview of aspects of dance as a source of entertainment as it would have been in a village like Biddenham from about 1750 to about 1850. Dances were one of the main means of meeting new people or renewing social connections. Dances were held in private houses – floor space was cleared – and in public venues, Assembly Rooms. There were  Assembly Rooms in Bedford in 1834.

The style of dancing changed considerably during this period. In the late eighteenth century, the minuet was still in vogue. Attention was focused on the performing couple: others stood around and watched.  Gradually other dances were introduced that involved all those present. These were country dances with their long sets and most shocking of all, the waltz, which necessitated close contact with a partner.

The new dances required instruction as it was too difficult to learn them at the ball. Dancing masters, they were generally men, were employed by wealthy families. Anne told us about Queen Victoria’s dancing master who travelled to Windsor and Balmoral when required. He sometimes taught the ladies-in-waiting and other times, the young royals. If there was no need for his services that day, he went fishing. In Bedford, the dancing masters were based in the Crescent and taught families like the Russells and St Johns.

Once we had some background information, Anne took on the role of dancing master, so that we could try out a couple of the Country Dances. One of them was regularly danced by a 14 year old girl in the  nineteenth century, but we soon realized that the young can learn moves and remember them faster than older people! We did try valiantly to remember where to go and when and Anne was very patient with us. We had plenty of laughter as well as gentle exercise!  Thank you Anne for being such a good teacher as well as lecturer!

After the meeting, we looked at an aerial photograph of the village taken in about 1960, that belongs to the Gardeners’ Association. Paula had brought it along for everyone to see. Three ponds were clearly visible in the centre of the village as well as the old farm buildings for Grove Farm.

The next meeting of the Society will be on Monday, April 29th at 8pm in the Church Barn. Our speaker will be Jean Fullerton who will tell us about Victorian Medicine. Jean has been a nurse and lecturer in
nursing. She is now a published novelist and a regular lecturer on cruise ships. I hope you will be able to come and hear her.

Kathy Fricker

Emergency Temporary One-Way Prohibition – Biddenham Turn


Road: Biddenham Turn, Biddenham.

Length Affected: Prohibits vehicles from proceeding in a south-westerly direction along that length of Biddenham Turn, Biddenham, which extends from Bromham Road, Bedford, to a point approximately 25 metres southwest of Bromham Road, Bedford.

Contact/Applicant: For further information please contact Kim Hamer of Anglian Water Services, Tel: 03457 145 145.

Reason for Closure: To facilitate urgent sewer repair work.

Dates: This emergency temporary one-way prohibition is anticipated to be in operation between 9:30am and 3:30pm on up to 5 days from Monday 28th January 2019 to Friday 1st February 2019 inclusive.

Signed Alternative Routes: Proceed in a westerly direction along Bromham Road to the roundabout adjoining Deep Spinney, Biddenham. Take the 1st exit and continue along Deep Spinney to Gold Lane. Turn right and continue along Gold Lane, then Main Road, and then Biddenham Turn to site.

Kind Regards,
Jason Holdsworth.
Highways Technician (Temporary Traffic Management).

Street Works,
Bedford Borough Council,
Borough Hall,
Cauldwell Street,
MK42 9AP.


barn@2 – Your Life’s Story; A Precious Legacy

Marilyn Freeman and her husband Barry run a company called Spellbrooktales and she came to talk to us on 8th January 2019 about how their company can create books from your pictures, memories, poems etc. to pass on to family members.

It all began with Marilyn editing and proof-reading the books which Barry wrote when he retired. I discovered this incredible service on finding a very mouse-munched photograph album in a box in our barn and, wondering what I could do to rescue it, found their advert in a local magazine.

Marilyn had been brought up in a shop in Hollinwood, on a busy Manchester main road. It was when her mother died in 2010 that she began setting down her childhood memories, partly in tribute to her parents and also as a way to help deal with her grief. She wanted her children and grandchildren to know something of her life growing up among the red-brick terraces and smoky cotton mills. She also described in wonderful detail the annual trip the family made, by coach or train, to the coast at Blackpool or resorts on the north coast of Wales. Her poems, included in her book, were so poignant and got us all thinking of our past lives and how different they were from the lives of children today.

A good place to start, perhaps, if you want to leave a written legacy for your own family? There are self-publishing sites online but they require a certain level of skill and an ability to proof-read, not to mention the time and effort it
might take to perfect those skills.

Marylin gave us many good suggestions for ideas of what to include and various themes to work towards, remembering to include thoughts, feelings and references to all five senses. She has produced a small booklet for anyone wishing to embark upon their own ‘book of memories’. Further information can be found at www.spellbrooktales.com

This was our first meeting as barn@2, our all-inclusive group but……..where were you all? We did have a couple of newcomers but the audience remained gender specific!

Our new programmes are available with a membership fee of £5. Members fees for meetings are £3 and for non-members it’s £5 for which you get a talk, refreshments and a chance to win a prize in the raffle. Our talks are advertised so if you see something which appeals, do come along and join us. You will be most welcome and if you have a talk you can give, or know someone who could contribute to our programme for 2020, do get in touch.

Many thanks and a Happy Friendly New Year!

Val Fitzhugh

Update – Outline planning application for up to 160 dwellings including vehicular access

To date over 242 objection letters have been received by the Bedford Borough Council. In some cases the Council have consolidated household signatures as one entry on the portal. Do not worry about this as the Borough Council have assured us that household signatures will be counted separately when they make their final count.

Please continue to engage with neighbours, friends and families using the door step challenge.  65 separate letters have been received from the door step challenge plus 13 letters from the 1st Friday Lunch club. This is in addition to the 242 signatures above, the Borough council will update these in the portal shortly.

Please reach out to people living outside Biddenham by encouraging them to use the link: www.have-a-say.co.uk/goldlane,this is the simplest way to get signatures. There has been some concern that registration has not occurred via this method as delays have occurred. Again rest assured the objections will get counted as the Borough Council is performing governance checks on these.

Many thanks to all the volunteers who have engaged with their communities.

We still need many more. All objections count so make yours count!