Peters Picturehouse Bridge of Spies

Stephen Spielberg (director), Tom Hanks and Mark Rylance (actors) and the Cohen Brothers (script writers) welcome you back to Peter’s Picturehouse at 19.30 on 1st September with a showing of the Academy Award Winning

Bridge of Spies. Bridge of Spies is the true story of three extraordinary characters whose fate helped to define the conflicts of the most dangerous years of the Cold War: William Fisher, a British born KGB agent arrested by the FBI in New York City and jailed as a Soviet superspy for trying to steal America’s most precious nuclear secrets; Gary Powers, the American U-2 pilot who was captured when his plane was shot down over Russia; and Frederic Pryor, a young American in Berlin mistakenly identified as a spy, arrested and held without charge by the Stasi, East Germany’s secret police.

We will be following strict Covid-related guidelines and total numbers will have to be restricted to 30, on a first come first served basis. To manage this, we are introducing a new booking system and we are asking you to pre-book your tickets and refreshments. The hall will be laid out with pre-allocated seats according to “bubbles”, ie people that can sit together without social distancing. The “bubbles” will be appropriately spaced. Please bring the correct money with you when you arrive at the hall.

Tickets are £5 each, and doors will open at 19.00 for a 19.30 start. To order your tickets and any refreshments, either phone or email: John Esam – – 07900218900 or Marihelen Esam – 07710288933

Refreshments are priced as follows:

Red or White Wine – £3 per glass or £12 per bottle

Beer – £2

Soft Drinks – £1

Ice Creams – £1.50

Tea, coffee – £1.

We will supply you with full details of the Covid related precautions we are taking and ask you to fill in an information contact form when you book.

Update and Background – Great Denham Golf Course

Our team consists of Great Denham and Biddenham PC’s along with the two Ward Councillors for Bromham & Biddenham plus Ward Councillor for Kempston Rural and our resident Planning Expert Natalie Wilson.


In 2008 the current operators of the golf club signed a 20-year lease which would see the club and course through to 2028. At the 10-year break clause – normal in a long-lease – negotiations took place resulting in a new two-year lease. In the last 12 months the golf club management team have attempted to open negotiations with Bidwells on the renewal of the lease, but have received no response other than the mantra “the trustees don’t know what they want to do with the golf course”.

The result of this has been that the 504 members of the Golf Club have been advised of the likelihood of closure when the lease expires on 16 th October 2020.

It is clear with the original lease which took us up to 2028, the Trust saw the golf course continuing for another 10 years from the 2018 break clause. What has happened to change that? Quote from Richard Wingfield in a conversation with the Chair of Biddenham PC, “understood the decision to be that golf was no longer seen as a good use of the land because of a decline in popularity and profitability”!

Popularity? – Ok then if 504 members is not popularity what is?

Profitability? Whose – the Trusts? We have established if they close the golf course, they can’t let out the buildings due to conditions set when planning permission was given. The Trust will still need to pay rates on the property (est. £40k), to insure the buildings, to look after the land and fences, plus other unknown costs – whilst forgoing their annual lease rental (currently £75k).

Why do they want to do this? Could be to let the land become seen as “no defined use” and hope that they could eventually get planning for Residential development of the 70 hectares. Current ratios of houses to hectare are between 30 to 50 so at best 2,100 houses and could be considerably worse! We would hope that the Local Plan 2030 policies in place from Bedford Borough would continue to protect the Urban Open Space and Gap so even more confusing as to why the landowner wants to close the course?

What have we done so far?
 We have established that the landowner is the Old Ford End Trust, set up in 1995 to manage the land and agreements and s106 arrangements with Bedford Borough and the developer Bovis. The current trustees of OFET are Reginald Phillip Heyworth and Charles Robert Hutton – addresses available if required.
 We have written to the Trust via their agent Bidwells and to their home addresses to outline the concerns and planning history and conditions which impact the property and
that would affect future planning applications.

 We have spoken directly to the trust beneficiary, Richard Wingfield, and discussed resident concerns.
 We have engaged our MP, Richard Fuller, and he has written to the trustees via their agent, Bidwells, asking for dialogue on the matter.
 Template letters have been written and are available for residents to use for both the MP and the Trustees (via their agent).
 A large number of residents have written to both their MP and the Trustees to highlight their concerns and request a review of the decision to close the course.
 We have written to the Communities Secretary Robert Jenrick on the 16 th July and, as no response, have asked Richard Fuller to intervene and also speak to Simon Clark MP Minister for Regional Growth and Local Government.
 We have started discussions with both a Planning Solicitor and a Planning Barrister
 A “Shout-out” to the local community has brought offers of help with PR, Media and Marketing.
 We have written to the Trustees to ask for a meeting so that we can explore whether a community and business arrangement may be an option we can consider.

Up to date we have not received any responses to any communication and having just spoken to Richard Fuller he has not either. As soon as we have more we will update.

Do you need a reusable face mask – and a spare to put in the wash?

If you would like a reusable fabric mask, the Village Agent Scheme has some to distribute to people who need them.  We have very kindly been given a grant by our two Biddenham Borough Councillors, so we are able to make these available free of charge*.  Our masks are made in Bedford, using 100% cotton fabric – plain white on one side and printed fabric on the reverse.  We have coloured and floral fabrics suitable for women, and also black prints which may be preferred by men.  They have an aluminium strip which enables the wearer to shape them over the nose – this does not affect the mask’s washability. They are supplied in a hygienic resealable bag, with usage instructions.  

We can provide made-to-measure face masks adapted for special needs. Eg, you might also need a mask which is larger or smaller than average, or if you wear hearing aids, we can provide you with a mask with elastic which goes around the back of your head, leaving your ears free.  

It’s best for us to use face masks which can be washed and reused, leaving disposable masks for the professionals. Washable masks avoid creating unnecessary waste, since disposable face masks end up in landfill, as they are not recycled.  Once worn, a reusable mask should be washed before being used again, so it is best for everybody to have at least two.  We are now all required to wear a face covering on public transport, or when attending a hospital as a visitor or outpatient. We should also wear a face covering in enclosed public spaces, including hairdressers, chiropodists, doctor’s surgeries etc.  To order your mask, please email or phone Freephone 0800 039 1234.

*These masks are available free of charge. However you can, if you wish, make a contribution, as all profits from the masks are donated to Tibbs Dementia Foundation, a very worthwhile Bedford-based organisation.

Teresa Moon, the Village Agent for Biddenham, is available to help fill in forms, apply for grants, make benefit applications, and answer any questions or queries you may have. Her services are free of charge.  Just call Freephone 0800 039 1234 or email

Teresa Moon

Village Agent

 “Just Ask” Scheme

Covering Chawston, Colesden, Colmworth, Great Barford, Little Barford, Ravensden, Renhold, Roxton, Wilden, Wyboston, Biddenham, Elstow and Wixams

Biddenham Parish Council is looking for a new Clerk

Biddenham Parish Council is looking for a new Clerk to start ASAP. 12 hours per week with expenses and pension. It’s not a voluntary role, actually a proper employment with salary paid via Bedford Borough Council and a national set of standards. 10 council meetings each year. No experience necessary; training offered and paid for. A chance to help the community and develop a public service career. Local person preferred, as knowledge of the village and an interest in its upkeep and welfare are key.

Please respond by 19 July 2020

Apply to Peter Chase at

COVID-19: Book Online to Visit the HWRC

Online booking available for the HWRC You can now book a slot to visit the Household Waste Recycling Centre (HWRC) via the Bedford Borough Council website. To manage demand and ensure that everyone can social distance while using the tip, you must book an appointment before you go.

It is quick and easy to do so online on our website.

Please do not come to the HWRC without an appointment, you will be turned away. For full details on what types of waste the HWRC is currently accepting, vehicle types permitted, and opening hours please visit our website.

Reopening Bromham Road Bridge

It’s the news Bedford has been waiting for: Bromham Road bridge will reopen to motorists on Tuesday 9 June 2020. Network Rail made the announcement this morning, ending a year of misery for commuters. The bridge has been closed since June 2019 to allow major improvement work to take place as part of the Midland Main Line Upgrade. Network Rail undertook the major project to demolish and rebuild the structure at a raised height to provide a safe distance for newly installed overhead line equipment to pass beneath the structure. This work will enable the line from London to Kettering and Corby via Bedford to be electrified as part of a £1.5billion project to improve the railway. From Tuesday 9 June, the pavements on both sides of the bridge will also open. Although the majority of the work to the bridge is now complete, there is still a small amount of work, such as removing a temporary scaffold bridge and final utilities work, left to complete. Some of this work is planned to take place overnight in July, meaning there may be further overnight road closures. During this time, a clearly signposted diversionary route for motorists and cyclists will be in place and pedestrian access will be maintained. Spencer Road will remain closed until August to allow final work to the embankment to take place. The Midland Main Line Upgrade is the biggest investment into the line since its construction in the Victorian era. Gavin Crook, Principal Programme Sponsor for Network Rail, said, “The work at Bromham Road bridge is a key part of the Midland Main Line Upgrade, which is a major project which will bring significant benefits for passengers. “We know that this work has caused some disruption for those living in the area, so we are delighted to be able to announce the reopening of the bridge for motorists. There is still some work left to complete and we will work hard to keep the impact of this work to a minimum. We’d like to thank residents for their continued patience whilst we carry out the final stages of work to the bridge.”

Captain Tom and his great fundraising effort

I am sure you are all aware of the tremendous effort being made to support Captain Tom and his great fundraising effort. Biddenham is doing its bit by helping to save all the stamps from his many congratulatory birthday cards. The money raised from the eventual recycling and sale of the stamps is going to The RNIB. If you can help with cutting and sorting please let us know. Bags can be collected or delivered in the village. Contact Chris and Jan Jones at

Update – Garden waste collections to resume from 27th April 2020

Bedford Borough Council is restarting green garden waste collections from Monday 27 April, on a monthly basis to begin with. You should check when your next garden waste collection will be by visiting

During the coronavirus outbreak, the Council has been following the latest government guidance to protect both the public and bin crews working on the front line. This meant there had to be some changes to ensure priority collections could continue, while enabling the crews to work in line with social distancing measures and stay safe.

Now, with the crews having settled into the new working practices to stay safe and the Council successfully sustaining the government’s direction over the priority of household waste and recycling collections, garden waste collections will be restarting from next Monday (27 April), on a monthly basis to begin with. The Council’s crews are still having to work in a different way to ensure that they are staying safe and working to the government guidance so collections may take longer than usual. Black and orange bins will be collected as normal, but green bins may not be collected on your normal bin day.

Check when your next garden waste collection will be by visiting online collection day finder has been updated to reflect this brief change to monthly collections for garden waste.

What you can put into your garden waste bin

YES please: •grass cuttings •plants and flowers •weeds •prunings and hedge clippings •leaves and bark •vase plants and pond plants

NO thanks: •soil and rubble •vegetable peelings and kitchen waste •plastic bags, plant pots and polystyrene trays •animal bedding and pet waste •general household waste •persistent and noxious weeds (Ragwort, Japanese Knotweed, Spear Thistle, Creeping Thistle, Broad Leaf Dock, Curled Dock) •fake plants

Please make sure your garden waste is placed into the green bin loose (no bags please) and is contained within your bin. Extra garden waste will not be collected.  This bulletin has been sent to you by Recycling & Waste at Bedford Borough Council Borough Hall, Cauldwell Street, Bedford, MK42 9AP 01234 718060