The Chimes

The Chimes is the parish magazine for the villages of Aston Ingham, Linton, Upton Bishop, Lea and Gorsley.  It is delivered at the beginning of the month ten times a year by volunteers (December/January and July/August) are joint issues.  It is also available at

The sub editor for Upton Bishop is Deb Long and she can be contacted 0n 01989 780114 or by email

There is a directory of useful information published by The Chimes team.  This is the Upton Bishop section of the directory.

Information about news and events which are published in The Chimes can be found in the What’s On and News section of this website.


March 2021

Rainfall report by Rob the Rainman

The total rainfall in January was 94.8mm, about 25% more than average although it seemed much wetter. It was actually a mix of a winter month. There were cold spells (with some very chilly winds) and milder spells. We had snow on the 2nd and 8th, albeit not much and quite wet, and we awoke to some more substantial snow on the 24th, enough for a (small) snowman with a bit of effort. And a sprinkling of those winter days which are a real delight with frosty starts and calm days of blue skies and sunshine and some lovely sunsets. The 7th was of particular note as the overnight conditions resulted in a hoar frost so that everything sparkled in the morning sun. But back to the rain; only small amounts until the 19th and 20th saw Storm Christophe blow in resulting in 27mm which was bad enough but much more fell in the Welsh hills resulting in once again high river levels and flooding of property and houses for the second winter in a row. A brief respite before another very wet spell over the 27th to the 30th resulted in a total of 46.4mm.

Village News

Millennium Hall – to book the hall ring Jane Pendlebury on 01989 780763

What’s on at the Millennium Hall – For all information on events and classes, dates, times etc please check this out in the Chimes Directory.  All subject to current government guidelines.

Website –

200 CLUB – Draw for:

February – £20 Clive and Wendy Beavan – £10 Alan Davis – £5 Godfrey Farr

BABY CONGRATULATIONS to Luke and Martha Young on the safe arrival of Sonny.

Best wishes to Mary Osborn following her recent fall and to everyone who is not well at present or feeling lonely during this challenging time we find ourselves in.


February 2021

Village News

Millennium Hall – to book the hall ring Jane Pendlebury on 01989 780763

What’s on at the Millennium Hall – For all information on events and classes, dates, times etc please check this out in the Chimes Directory.  All subject to current government guidelines.

Website –

200 CLUB – Draw for:

December – £20 Tony Crosbie – £10 Ann Sharland – £5 Alan Tandy

January – Susan Gubbay – £10 Jane Ayers – £5 Claire & Paul Newman

Sympathy – Our thoughts and sympathy go to Jake and Rupert Simpson and their families on the loss of their Dad Robert, who will be remembered for many things including for his generosity and kindness.

Best wishes to those of you who have had the misfortune to have had your homes flooded recently and to everyone who is not well at present or feeling lonely during this challenging time we find ourselves in.

WELCOME – A very warm welcome to Michael and Katie Wallace who have moved into the Crow Hill area and Melissa and Lloyd and Alison and family who have recently come to live at The Pastures.

THE UPTON BISHOP CAKES FOR CHRISTMAS – A very big thank you to the bakers and buyers of the bake off, just over £200 was raised for church funds.

THE COVID CHEER TREE – The tree this year looked very festive with so many more people taking part.  Thank you for all the lovely comments, it has brought a bit of cheer to a gloomy period we all find ourselves in.      Jane


Robert Simpson H.A.P.

Photograph of Bob Simpson standing amidst his cherry treesDied after a full life and short illness on the 8th December aged 72. Greatly missed by his partner Liz, his sons Jake and Rupert and his grandchildren Rosie, Fiona, George and Oliver.

Fruit Farmer and founder of Chicory Crops Ltd in 1971, keen aviator, old car enthusiast, longstanding member of VCC and VSCC.  Practical supporter of Dymock C.C. and Newent R.F.C.

Nothing Robert did was normal :-

He was the pioneer in the production of chicory, strawberries, raspberries, apples and cherries and very proud of his direct relationship with M&S and Waitrose.  The passion for horticulture came from his father who came to the area to manage Castle Fruit Farm (now Bentleys) and then starting Boulsdon PYO after the war.

He had a passion for flying which came from his father who was a navigator in Swordfish Torpedo Bombers in W.W.2.  They were some of the first people to take up hang gliding in the U.K. with frequent medical consequences.  Hobbies in his earlier life were also pot holing and canal tunnel exploration and in later life were flying where he would often be seen flying high above Herefordshire countryside.  He built his first microlight and had a very keen interest in vintage and veteran cars, travel and very old clocks.  In his retirement he was busy with old cars, always in his workshop tinkering.

He had a particular fondness for South Africa where his sister Kate lives.  The last trip with Liz involved buying a land cruiser and driving around the countries in Southern Africa with a sticker on the side saying ‘Old Farts Safari 2017’.

He was in the process of mounting a 2 stroke engine that he bought from the internet onto a bicycle to prove to a man with a battery powered e-bike that engines are always better.

He took a very active role as a grandad, affectionately known as Robrob to his grandchildren.

An extraordinary man.

 Rainfall Report by Rob the Rainman

November: 47.8mm which was 30% less than average but only 9 days had no rainfall recorded, with small amounts for the remainder. An uninspiring month with only the 24th noted as a lovely autumnal day. Warm though, in fact the 6th warmest November since records began in 1884. That is until the 25th onwards when we had frost, fog and a combination of both as the month came to a close.  A total of 203mm for the autumn period which is just under the average, largely due to a relatively dry and pleasant September. Both October (wetter than average) and November were rather dull.  December: 164.5mm making it a very wet one at well over twice the average. The 1st was a lovely day but from then on rain was recorded each day although there were sporadic nice, wintry periods, at least during the short daylight hours. Then on the 23rd the rain upped the ante with 51mm pouring down causing widespread problems for both home and car owners. It relented on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day started frosty and was very seasonal. Boxing Day started the same but as the day wore on the wind got stronger until it was blowing a real hooly overnight accompanied by 19mm of rain – Storm Bella. Snow on the hills but for us only sleet/wet snow on the following couple of days. Then the frost returned and New Years Eve was a repeat of Christmas Day.

So, the year: total rainfall 895mm, 20% up on the average. It was an odd year (of weather I’m talking about), with firstly Storm Dennis in February with all the record river levels and subsequent chaos and traumatic trouble that brought. This was followed by an increasingly dry spring from mid March culminating in a very dry May. After the spring we had high hopes for summer but we got a real mix of hot (very hot) and cold spells, unsettled weather with some torrential downpours and thunderstorms and some really windy days, especially those in August. The most rain fell in December, followed by February with both August and October not far behind. And of course May was essentially dry – how weird (again I’m talking about the weather) was that month.

A Happy and Better New Year to you all.



We are lucky that we live in a beautiful area to walk dogs, however, we are receiving an increasing number of reports of owners not clearing up after their dogs. If you take your dog out then it is not unreasonable to expect that it might need to do its business, so be a decent, responsible dog owner, do the right thing and clear up.  Please, if you take you dog out, do not leave the house without your poo bags and clean up after them. We have had reports of problems in Pomona Grove by the allotment entrance/orchard, public footpaths, particularly the one opposite the old phone box in Crow Hill, the pull in on the left hand side on the Bromsash road on the double bend, and more concerning are the reports of mess found on grave stones at the church.

Please be responsible for your dogs and take the poo bags home.


November 2021

Olivia Boon Retires as Churchwarden – Standing on the shoulders of giants …….a post from Jane Ayres

This month, as I take up my appointment as new church warden at Upton Bishop, I would like to thank my predecessor Olivia Boon for all the incredible work she has done over the last nine years.
When I looked up the responsibilities of church warden, I noticed that six years is the maximum term allowed, unless there were exceptional circumstances. In 2017, there was nobody available to take on the role so Olivia just carried on without complaint for an extra three years. With ’can do’ positivity, she has quietly organised the smooth running our church life, with most of us hardly noticing all the little things that need to be done.
Where’s the key to this cupboard? What happened to that booklet? Olivia will know. She’s the ‘go to’ person for broken heating, finding a gravestone or dealing with a swarm of bees. She has been a great support to our clergy. She knows everyone…who is sick, who needs help and who can help us.
Olivia and her fund-raising team have brought us everything from barn dances to murder mysteries plus many, many Summer fetes and Christmas Fayres. Those of us who have worked with her on these projects have found her enthusiasm infectious.
It is because of Olivia’s efforts, that not only have we been able to pay our considerable running costs each year, but the tower and bells have been repaired and the organ refurbished.
During the Covid lockdown, the whole village was grateful for her daily emails keeping us all in touch, coordinating information and offers of help in the parish.
I’m pleased to say that Olivia is not leaving the PCC. She will continue to organise fund raising and remain a stalwart friend of the church.
Thank you for everything you have done and continue to do for the Parish, Olivia. The church is in good order thanks to you. I hope to continue building on your good work.
You will be an extremely hard act to follow.
Further Thanks
Robin Boon retires as Secretary after many years of keeping minutes, circulating agendas and answering correspondence. Thank you for all your hard work. We shall miss your quiet competence and sense of humour.
We also say goodbye Jan Stevenson, Fiona Manns and John Boyd who are also leaving the PCC. Many, many thanks for everything you have done over the years.
New Members
The PCC welcomes Terry Jones to the team.
Secretary Vacancy
Sandra Major has kindly offered to hold the fort by taking our minutes until another secretary can be found.
If you would like to join us on the PCC and take on this role, please let Jane know.


October’s rainfall total was 133.1mm, another wet one as this was about 60% more than the average expected. It was even wetter than last year when we had 122.5mm but we didn’t get the awful flooding that we saw then, possibly due to less of contribution from Wales. The 1st was a lovely day but rain started in the evening so 10.4mm was recorded against it and the rain continued heavily throughout the 2nd (19.3mm) and the 3rd (38.2mm) all due to a French named storm, Storm Alex, which rotated into us from over the channel. Subsequently, The Met Office said that the 3rd was the wettest day across the whole of the UK since records began in the 1890s. The rain continued until a brief respite from the 14th to the 18th before returning again to record some rain each day for the rest of the month, with 11.2mm and 12.3mm on the 24th and 25th being noteworthy, as was the unexpected very sharp and thundery hail shower we had on The Crews on the 25th. Halloween evening turned out to be mostly dry but quite windy. Sunny days in short supply then but the odd one we did get showed how good October can be with the sun showing off the autumn colours and the clear light giving stunning blue skies. Shame most of the month was rather miserable.

October 2020

Church News


 We have room to welcome all who want to come and worship with friends and neighbours.

Please respect social distancing and hand washing and masks but the rule of six does not apply at church services.

If cold or wet in the church (mask required)

If fine in the Garden of Remembrance (no mask required) – bring a chair


2nd Sunday Benefice Service by Zoom – please check the village website for the login and password.


Tuesdays Evensong at 5.30pm in the church.


Rector – David Howell  01989568736           

Church Warden – Jane Ayres  07989572356

There is now a QR code outside the church. If you have uploaded the Covid App you can scan it on your smartphone when you visit.

Sunday Nov 1st  Candlelight ALL SOULS SERVICE A quiet contemplative service to remember our loved ones. At Dusk, 4.30pm, in the Garden of Remembrance, weather permitting (if wet inside the church) Please wrap up warmly and bring a chair.

Nov 8th 10.45am Morning Service with Act of Remembrance and laying of wreath at our war memorial


Our Virtual Christmas Fayre kicks off on November 1st finishing on Saturday Dec 5th  10am to 2pm with a (Covid-safe)Table Sale in the Millennium Hall

All the old favourites and much more on line. Pay for individual games or why not buy a ticket for £5, £10, £20 and have a go at everything? Prizes and pre-ordered cakes available for collection at the Table Sale. See the enclosed flyer or watch the village website and Facebook page for more details.

Dec 12th and 13th Upton Bishop Walk through Christmas Story

Instead of our usual nativity play in the church, this year we will be performing a walk through Christmas experience. During your walk through the church yard in small groups, you will meet Mary and Joseph, Shepherds, Kings and Angels and even Father Christmas with a sack of presents for children.

Timed tickets for groups of six or less will be available from Jane Ayres. There is no charge for the Walk Through Christmas, but donations are always very welcome.

Anyone who would like to help or take part as an actor please contact Jane.

Christmas Week Carol Singing

We cannot go door to door this year, but a small group of singers will be out and about leading a door step carol in the week before Christmas.

Come to your door like you did to clap for the NHS and join in with a verse of Hark the Herald.  Look out for times and places that will be advertised in the December Chimes.

Donations by BACS or bucket will go the The Ross Larder.

The Ross Larder is always grateful for your gifts but have asked that we do not donate random groceries especially not Christmas items. These often do not meet the needs of their clients.

Please leave gifts in the designated collecting points at the Ross supermarkets or at the back of the church.

 The following items are always needed 


Tea or coffee

Tinned meat

Tinned fish

Tinned fruit

Tinned custard or rice puddings

Longlife milk

Washing up liquid (NEVER bleach)

Soap/shower gel

Toilet rolls

They DO NOT need sanitary towels or baked beans!

Please be generous: plenty of people who never imagined they would have to use the Community Larder have recently fallen on hard times.

Thank you.

Our Favourite Trees

We are on the hunt for Upton Bishop’s favourite trees. Please send us photos of the top trees in the village. They can be from your garden, a neighbour’s garden or from our fields and hedgerows. Here’s an apple tree in full bloom: just looking forward to spring! Visit the UB website or Facebook page to join in and to admire the trees that have already been posted. Don’t forget to check in on the Not Open Gardens and the Virtual Pet Show in the Village Life section.

Village News

Millennium Hall – to book the hall ring Jane Pendlebury on 01989 780763

200 CLUB – Draw for:

October – £20 Fiona Simpson – £10 Geraldine Hulme – £5 Martin and Linda Bromley

Best wishes to Elisabeth Fanshawe following her recent operation and to everyone who is not too well at present and to those of you who are awaiting hospital appointments.

Welcome to the Withers family who have recently moved into the village.


THE GREAT UPTON BISHOP CHRISTMAS BAKE OFF from lst November – for everyone who likes making and eating cakes

 We can’t have our normal Christmas Fayre but we can still have a virtual cake and produce stall. To take part you just need to tell us what cake (or cakes) you would like to make and/or buy and we will match bakers with buyers. You can make a big fancy cake, cupcakes, a tray bake or savoury bites.  But don’t make them until we have identified a buyer. For Christmas you might want to pledge a chocolate log, mince pies or even a fruit cake which the buyer could ice ready for the festive season.

We’ve already had pledges of a lemon drizzle, a Victoria sponge and some bara brith and we know there are lots of bakers in the village just itching to make gorgeous creations.

A full list of the cakes will be on the website and published on Facebook. Cakes can be reserved by commenting on our Facebook posts or through the comment form on the website or by emailing Jane Fray or phoning her on 01989 780383.

Buyers will be put in contact with bakers to arrange collection. If anyone is shielding and is unable to collect we can help out.

The cake sale will run for a number of weeks starting from 1st November, so you can make or buy more than one. We are also accepting donations of jam, marmalade, mincemeat and other preserves.

Each cake or pot of jam will come with a suggested minimum donation price. Donations to be made if possible via BACS to:

  • Upton Bishop PCC, Sort code 30-90-89, account no 37440160.

If you are unable to bank online cash, or cheques made out to Upton Bishop PCC, can be placed in a sealed envelope and posted through Peter Fanshawe’s door at Melrose, The Crews, HR9 7UF.


COVID CHEER – The tree by The Old Stores will once again be very festive with baubles from lst December when the lights are turned on.  If you would like to put a bauble on the tree in memory of a loved one or simply for fun please do.  The baubles must be shatterproof and firmly fixed to the branch of the tree. Please collect your baubles from the tree by Epiphany on the 6th January, otherwise they will be removed.  Everyone is very welcome to join in from the parish of Upton Bishop and the surrounding area.  Please contact Jane on 780383 for more information.


What’s on at the Millennium Hall – For all information on events and classes, dates, times etc please check this out in the Chimes Directory.  All subject to government guidelines.

Rainfall Report from Rob the Rainman

September’s rainfall total was 22.5mm, about a third of the average expected. The first autumn month but in fact September did a better job of summer than August did, at least for the first 3 weeks. A drop of rain on the second and then it was dry until the autumn equinox on the 22nd. And not only dry but really rather pleasant as well and from the 14th a real summer spell with temperatures well into the 20s. The weather broke on the equinox and this presaged a change to more autumnal weather with much cooler days and a bit unsettled.


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