Latest News from the
Potterne Branch of the Royal British Legion...
Sqn Ldr John Mann MBE BSc
Len Holloway's 100th Birthday Party - 3 Feb 2015
Below, we have a film of Len Holloways 100th Birthday Party held in Potterne Village Hall on the 3rd of February 2015.
The party was a surprise organised by the Potterne Branch of the Royal British Legion along with close cooperation with other Village groups and his family.
The Royal British Legion Potterne Branch
Chairman's Newsletter for October 2020
Harvest Thanksgiving drive-in went well here on the farm despite the early October monsoon.
Finding inventive ways to make things happen when Covid-19 is trying to stop us is a challenge we are willing to accept. That principle will apply to Remembrance Sunday on the 8th of November. New restrictions on social gathering have changed the dynamic of both Civil and Church Remembrance Services. Branch President John Mann along with his super-exited tech team carry the expertise when it comes to the Zoom communication stuff and I have asked him to construct some notifications explaining the setup for you to read after this piece. The intention of the Parish Council, Legion Branch and the St Mary's Church team is for the Remembrance Sunday Service to be as inclusive as possible.
So many Potterne groups came forward to be represented by laying a Wreath at the War Memorial last year I would like the same to happen again this year. To make that a reality I will carry over for this Remembrance the Wreaths that were laid last year and I will re-lay them during the Remembrance Service myself in respect to those community groups. Should anyone reading this like a Wreath laid in honour of the Fallen on behalf of Service personnel, or like to be represented at the War Memorial Remembrance Wreath laying please contact me; John Chandler 01380 725643 - the Royal British Legion Branch would be pleased to honour your request.
Armistice Day the 11th of the 11th 11am for many is an important time to stop and remember the fallen. This year the Potterne RBL Branch will support an Armistice Remembrance event at Soldiers Walk; those wishing to join us at Soldiers Walk 10.50am will be welcome. Outside social distance rules will apply. Please contact me for details.
This year’s Poppy Appeal is also affected by the Covid plague. There will be no door to door collecting. Potterne Poppy’s will be placed by the RBL Branch at various “Poppy Station” locations. The National Royal British Legion Poppy Appeal setup will find ways for us to wear our Poppy with pride and I suspect other local branches such as the Devizes Branch will have Poppy’s available. Please lookout for way to donate to the Royal British Legion Poppy Appeal as your donation is so vital to Service, ex-Service, Veterans and their Beneficiaries in so many ways.
To be honest with you this Covid chaos has ruined this year’s membership of the RBL Branch for me and others must be feeling the same, however I refuse to give up. I will be Covid sensible not Covid cowered. The Potterne RBL Branch has an honourable purposed position in our community. I’m sure you will agree we all have a duty to keep calm and carry on.
Remembrance Sunday notice to all Branch members:
Only the principal persons will be at the War Memorial for the Remembrance Service, the Potterne Parish Council representative, the Reverend Ali Bridewell, Branch President John Mann and the Branch Chairman. The Branch Standard Bearer will be safely in attendance. The Congregation will be distanced within the Church Yard.
The Exhortation; They shall grow not old as we that are left grow old, age shall not weary them nor the years condemn, at the going down of the sun and in the morning; We Will Remember Them.
Mrs C said she was going to start feeding me with bird seed, “is that because you think I’m cheep”? I quipped; no she replied; it’s to make you more chirpy!
John Chandler, Branch Chairman.
The Royal British Legion Potterne Branch
Chairman's Newsletter for February 2021
We dropped our Covid guard just before New Year that was enough for the dreaded new variant corona virus to pay a visit to the farm and infect both Teresa, daughter Ginny and myself. Please believe me when you hear the plea to stay safe. Corona virus is a debilitating experience we can all do without.
Forgive me for stealing a few lines in this piece to say how much we appreciated the kind phone calls inquiring after our wellbeing along with offers of help. I never thought we would be on the receiving end of the community super heroes Potterne Good Neighbours with their reassuring phone calls; “our prayers are with you we are here to help”! I have a new perspective on the value of community. Rocket Ron dogged the bug as he dropped off essential supplies, many thanks Ron however you did forget the all-important medicinal Red! (Joking) Branch Community Support in action, we are in your debt rocket!
As yet there will be no Royal British Legion Wiltshire County Annual Conference. Most gatherings are done virtually and I have yet to be informed if such a meeting will go ahead. What I can tell you is that RBL Branch activity across the country has come to a slow grinding halt including Potterne. The good work of the British Legion goes on so no worries there, however the work needed has to be delivered in a different Covid secure way that means we are at the end of the phone even for a chat if finding isolation difficult to cope with. I will freely admit living and working here on farm can be at times a lonely experience especially lately. So no you’re not bothering me at all if you pick up the phone.
I find myself reflecting back at past Legion Branch events so too did one BBC television reporter recently when asked what was the most memorable occasion she had ever reported on; she replied when I went to Potterne to report on the One Hundredth Birthday party for Len Holloway in 2014. What a Potterne day to remember, so when I have finished scribbling this I will ring George Day and ask his permission for the incredible slice of Potterne Legion Branch history he recorded on DVD to go on to the Potterne123 site.
If you read between the lines you can tell I am missing the RBL fun times and am dearly awaiting the “new normal”. Light at the end of the tunnel?? Pass me my specs someone!
The contact details - phone number for Potterne Good Neighbours is published in this magazine.
Potterne RBL Branch- Branch Community Support Ron Fraser 01380 722710. John Chandler 01380 725643. Mob 07969798257.Stay safe, please don’t drop your Covid guard, and stay well!