What's On

and What's Not On in these times
Nailsea and nearby 2020

Now showing

The Secret Garden (PG)

Saturday, Sunday and Wednesday, October 24, 25 and 28 all at 2.30pm

The release of the revamped, British classic was delayed due to Covid-19 but is released just in time for half-term audiences. Starring Julie Walter and Colin Firth, this is sure to please adults and children with its haunting but uplifting magical tale.

The story follows Mary Lennox, a 10-year-old girl sent to live with her uncle Archibald Craven (Firth), under the watchful eye of Mrs Medlock (Walters) with only the household maid, Martha for company. Mary begins to uncover many family secrets, particularly after chancing upon her cousin Colin, who has been shut away unwell in a wing of the house.

Cats and Dogs: Paws Unite (U)

Monday, Tuesday and Thursday, October 26, 27 and 29 all at 2.30pm

Gwen the cat and Roger the dog are secret agents (obviously) who manage to covertly protect the world without us humans even finding out. Their partnership works due to the ‘Great Truce’ which has managed to stop cat and dog hostility for over a decade. The long-standing peace is threatened when a supervillain parrot discovers a way to manipulate wireless frequencies that only cats and dogs can hear.

The zany plot is sure to please younger audiences this half term holiday!

Tenet (12A)

Monday, Wednesda and Thursday, October 26, 28 and 29 all at 7.30pm

The most talked about and hotly anticipated film during lockdown; Tenet is the new blockbuster from writer/director Christopher Nolan, who bought you Memento, Inception and the reinvention of Batman via The Dark Knight Trilogy. Famous for his non-linear, time-bending, cerebral narratives that defy conventional classifications, his latest offering lives up to the hype.

Armed with only one word, Tenet, a protagonist (played by John David Washington) journeys through a twilight world of international espionage to prevent the start of World War III. With mind-bending effects, the like of which we saw in Inception, this is pure escapism cinema.

 

Royal Ballet: Giselle (12A)

Tuesday, October 27 at 7pm

With its combination of memorable story and exquisite choreography, Giselle is the perfect way to discover classical ballet. Dubbed ‘the greatest of all romantic ballets’ Peter Wright’s production is a classic tale of betrayal and the supernatural love that transcends death.

For times, dates and tickets go to https://www.curzon.org.uk/.

Rescheduled
David Attenborough - A Life On Our Planet + Exclusive cinema Q&A

We are now able to confirm that this event has been rescheduled for Friday and Saturday, October 23 and 2 at 7.30 pm. Tickets will go on general sale on Monday 19th October.
If you still have tickets for the original showing on the 16th of April and would like to re-book, or organise a refund, please send an email to oliver.treasure-smith@curzon.org.uk.


Exhibition on Screen: Frida Khalo
We are now able to confirm that this event has been rescheduled for Sunday, October 25, at 7.30 pm. Tickets also go on general sale on Monday, October 19.
If you still have tickets for the original showing on July 6 and would like to re-book, or organise a refund, please send an email to oliver.treasure-smith@curzon.org.uk.

Coming soon:

  • Royal Opera House - Manon Lescaut: Tuesday, November 3

  • National Theatre Live - Present Laughter: Tuesday, November 10 at 7pm

  • The Three Tenors - Voices for Eternity (Cinema Live): Thursday, November 19 at 7.30pm

  • Little Mix - LM5 The Tour Film: Saturday, November 21 at 7.30pm

  • Royal Opera House - Macbeth: Wednesday, November 25 at 7pm

  • Exhibition On Screen – Revealing Raphael: Tuesday, December 1 at 7.30pm

  • National Theatre Live - Cyrano de Bergerac: Wednesday, December 2 at 7pm

  • Royal Ballet - Nutcracker: Thursday, December 10 at 7pm

  • Exhibition On Screen – Concerto A Beethoven Journey: Wednesday, December 16 at  7.30pm

Now showing 'no false ceiling' at Curzon cinema

Covid-19 might have succeeded where Adolf Hitler failed in shutting down Clevedon’s historic Curzon community cinema, whose previous boast was that it’s the oldest continually operated cinema in the world. 
But the Curzon team haven’t been idle during the enforced closure. 
Not only have the contractors completed those much-needed repairs to the roof, but the trustees also took the decision to remove the false ceiling above the auditorium while the building was empty.
This means that when the Curzon reopens to the public on Friday, October 16, cinemagoers will be able to experience the auditorium in all its original splendour for the first time since 1972, when the balcony was closed and the ugly suspended ceiling installed.
Now audiences can savour the striking tin panelling curving over the cinema screen. 
To either side of this, you can see where the original boxes would have been, while the beautiful balcony and ornate panelled roof have both been exposed. Plans are now afoot to reopen the balcony to the public. 
From Friday, October 16, the Curzon will be ready for you with numbered seats, socially-distanced seat booking system, cleaning, cleaning and more cleaning, risk assessments coming out of its ears and a carefully programmed feast of films. 

Backwell Camera Club autumn 2020 programme

Backwell Camera Club is still meeting despite the COVID restrictions. 

The meetings are on Zoom every Thursday at 7.30 pm. 

New members are welcome and should contact the club through the website at www.backwellcameraclub.club

Here is its  autumn programme:

  • Thursday, October 15, Zoom presentation by the Practical Group and Community Photographers.  The two groups  will show some of their work during the past year.

  • Thursday, October 22, John Bebbinton FRPS presents Close-up, Macro And Beyond Macro - Problems And Solutions. John will examine the problems that are frequently encountered in close-up, macro and beyond macro photography and look at ways of overcoming them, in both theory and practice.  He will also demonstrate some low-cost equipment for 'beyond macro' and look at what can be achieved in your own backyard.

  • Thursday, October 29, the annual meeting and Nailsea Town Council trophy competition. More on website.

  • Thursday, November 5, Battle With Darwen, a repeat of its annual battle with Lancashire based camera club Darwen. This year's event will be hosted by Darwen.

  • Thursday, November 12, pesentation by UWE lens based media associate professor Dr Shawn Napthali Sobers

  • Thursday, November 19, annual projected image and COVID lockdown image of the year.

  • Thursday, November 26, Club members Kay Welsh and Alan Wood present an evening of landscape, wildlife and nature photography. Kay will be showing more of her landscape images and Alan will take us through his approach to wildlife and nature photography with plenty of practical tips along the way.

  • Thursday, December 3, Landscapes For All Seasons by Robert Harvey. Seasonal change is an inspiration to landscape photographers. Spring wild flowers, summer harvest, autumn mist and winter snow transform the countryside from ordinary to exceptional. Exploring favourite locations throughout Britain to illustrate light and composition, the talk shows how to make the most of conditions, capture reflections and panoramas, use filters and explains techniques such as focus stacking.

  • Thursday, December 10, Christmas show and tell evening where members show small sections of their work produced during the year.  This is the last meeting before they resume in the new year.

 

BBC member Mike West took the Poet's Walk peephole picture​​

Pop-up art sale not pop art

A pop-up sale of affordable art is at Ashton Court from Sunday to Monday, November 1-9. 

This free pop-up gallery curated by Zeg’s Decorative Fine Arts will show 60 handpicked pieces.

The aim is to provide accessible art directly to local audiences with most pieces priced at £20-100 framed and ready to hang. 

Supported by  Bristol charity Artspace Lifespace a virtual preview tour and onsite viewing are on offer, free of charge. 

The exhibition acknowledges unrecognised, amateur talent and includes classical oil and watercolour paintings dating back to the 19th century.

A retrospective installation piece of works from Bristol graffiti 3Dom, Feek, and Sepr will also feature.

Original sketches from these artists will be available to buy onsite and online.

Prints can also be ordered for next-working-day delivery. 

Zeg’s Decorative Fine Art curator Hugo Stanbury said: “We are delighted to present this inaugural event for the first time at Ashton Court.

“After months of lockdown and only a limited number of events taking place, exploring new ways to help people connect with each other and original art is the premise for this exciting new prospect.”

Hugo is hosting the virtual preview tour on Sunday, November 1, 6-8pm. 

The tour footage will be made available to art fans who wish to enjoy the exhibition from their own home. 

The gallery is open to the public Monday-Monday, November 2-9, 9am-6pm and set out to allow visitors to keep to social distancing guidelines.

To register for the tour via email messagezeg@gmail.com or go to https://www.facebook.com/zegsdfa to find out more. 

What's WAS On

Curzon at Clevedon reopens

We are back - the Curzon cinema at Clevedon reopens its doors from Friday, October 16.
It's been a long time. Six months of quiet, no crunching of popcorn, no Pearl & Dean theme tune announcing the start of something exciting, no lovely customers to chat to about the film they have just seen or are about to see. 
Now, we're getting ready for you, cleaning, tidying, organising and perhaps most importantly, booking in films.
But in your absence there has been at least one positive achievement... 
Our shiny new roof is complete. The building is water-tight, structurally sound and ready for action. And it's largely thanks to you wonderful people. All those tiles tagged, lottery tickets bought, buckets filled with change, they may seem like a distant memory but it lives on in the form of this sparkling terracotta. Photo-bombed by Morph, naturally.Thank you to everyone who gave their time and money, and a big thank you to the National Lottery Heritage Fund.


TENET
Perhaps the most talked about and hotly anticipated film during lockdown. The new blockbuster from writer/director Christopher Nolan (responsible for Memento, Inception and the reviving of Batman via The Dark Knight Trilogy). We are bringing you the ultimate slice of time-bending escapism. An espionage filled, sci-fi epic, that is the antidote to our current reality. If you want to come back to big visuals, big sound, and a superbly talented cast, then Tenet is for you.
'It's Bond on acid.' - Empire
'Tenet is a thrilling place to get lost in.' - Independent

 

DAVID ATTENBOROUGH; A LIFE ON OUR PLANET
The man. At 94, he has had the privilege of witnessing more of the natural world than any other human being. A Life On Our Planet is an honest, revealing and urgent first-hand account of humanity's impact on nature and a message of hope for future generations. At its most impactful on the big screen, the cinema version also comes with an exclusive Q&A with David Attenborough himself.

ORACLES IN SEPIAA beautiful example of using archive film footage to link human experiences from the past to the present. This short film uses historical material in an incredibly clever way to explore the extraordinary times we are living through now. Well worth taking a few minutes out to watch, it's a very moving piece of film. 

NATIONAL THEATRE LIVE: FLEABAG

No filter needed (or used). Phoebe Waller-Bridge brings Fleabag to the stage in this one-woman show that inspired the TV series. 'Filthy, funny snarky and touching.' - Daily Telegraph'Funny, vibrant, and blunt as a hammerhead.' - New York Magazine.

BLACK HISTORY MONTH
The start of October marks the beginning of Black History Month, and although we aren't open quite yet, it seems very important this year to mark it. Cinema has the power to give the marginalised a voice, to share truths and stories and talent from diverse communities that are often notably under-represented. We chatted to the Curzon's film programmer, Olly, about representation of BAME communities in British film, and asked him to recommend a film that explores racism and provides some perspective for Black History Month.
'Apart from a few stand-out pictures, the depiction of racism in British society is still largely lacking from British film. However, much of the best in film internationally is currently coming from black British actors. Daniel Kaluuya, Idris Elba, Michaela Cole, Thandie Newton, John Boyega, David Oyelowo and more. These are talents making black history right now and it's fantastic to see.'
Recommended viewing: I Am Not Your Negro (James Baldwin)
'The eloquent and passionate words of James Baldwin bring vital perspective to the struggles of fighting bigotry and the day to day anxieties of living in a country that doesn't want you.'
For a great pick of films, for all ages, that explore the themes of Black History Month visit IntoFilm.

For times, dates and tickets go to https://www.curzon.org.uk/.

In support of Macmillan Cancer Support the Royal Oak, High Street, Nailsea, Thursday night quiz is back.

Starting Thursday, September 24, from 8pm it costs £2 per person which gives you entry into the quiz and an accumulator game after the quiz where you could be in with a chance of winning a cash prize.

Maximum teams of six people with booking via the Greeneking App.

This is advisable to avoid disappointment as space is limited to keep in line with PubSafe covid-19 guidelines.

Ask a member of Oak team for anymore information.

Landlords Gemma and Craig said; "We hope to see you here."

  • The Club and Spa at Cadbury House Hotel is hosting a coffee morning on Wednesday, September 30, in support of Macmillan Cancer Support...more information to come... 

FOR AFTERS:  Following the successful government scheme, the Ring O'Bells at St Mary's Grove is running its own. Monday to Friday noon-2pm and 5.30-8pm it is offering a 25 per cent discount on all starters, mains and desserts. On Tuesday nights its popular pizzas will also be included in discount offer. It starts on Monday, September 14, and you can eat in or takeaway. Bookings advised call 01275 790009

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HOPPY BIRTHDAY: Nailsea MicroPub first anniversary party with a pint of Real Ale on Friday and Saturday, September 25-26 3pm-11pm at Unit 4 Ivy Court just off the High Street. Up to eight different cask ales from its favourite breweries. Lots more bottles and cans in our well stocked fridge. Also served are ciders, lagers, craft ales, wine, Prosecco, gin, tonics, rum, whisky, vodka and lots of soft drinks Indoor and outdoor space with marquee.This is a party not to forget  UPDATE: All photos from the first night of the anniversary party are in a slideshow on the Gallery 2020 page. Click HERE to view

Baby gorilla born at zoo

A baby gorilla has been born at Bristol Zoo Gardens helping to secure the future of this critically endangered species.

The tiny western lowland gorilla arrived in the early hours of on Wednesday morning, August 19) in the Gorilla House at the zoo.

Nine-year-old Kala gave birth naturally, overnight to the infant with dad, Jock, just a few metres away and the rest of the family troop nearby. Keepers arrived this morning to find the little gorilla nestling in its mother’s arms.

Bristol Zoo curator of mammals Lynsey Bugg said: “We are all thrilled.

"There is something very special about seeing a new-born baby gorilla, they are such an iconic and charismatic species.”

She said both Kala, who came to Bristol Zoo from Germany in 2018, and her baby were doing very well.

Lynsey said: “She is being very attentive and taking good care of her baby.

"It’s very early days but we are cautiously optimistic.

"The early signs are good and the baby looks to be a good size and is strong.”

The new gorilla joins a troop of six gorillas at the zoo, which are part of a breeding programme to help safeguard the future of western lowland gorillas.

One of Bristol Zoological Society’s flagship conservation projects focuses on western lowland gorillas in Monte Alén National Park, Equatorial Guinea – an area highlighted by the IUCN as critically important for the conservation of this species.

For more than 20 years The Society has also supported a sanctuary in Cameroon which helps look after orphaned gorillas and chimpanzees.

Gorillas are hunted for their meat and their young are regularly taken and sold as pets, often only to end up abandoned or dying of starvation.

Visitors to the Zoo should be able to see the new gorilla as they pass through the Gorilla House on the Zoo’s new one-way route.

Bristol Zoo Gardens is owned and run by Bristol Zoological Society, which also operates Wild Place Project. It is a conservation and education charity and relies on the generous support of the public not only to fund its important work at Bristol Zoo and Wild Place, but also its vital conservation and research projects across five continents.

In March the Society launched an appeal to ensure the future of its work ‘saving wildlife together’.

The Society, which is a registered charity, launched the BZS Appeal following the temporary closure of both its sites in the face of the Covid-19 pandemic.

To find out more, or to make a donation, visit https://bristolzoo.org.uk/bzsappeal.

Visitors to Bristol Zoo are now asked to pre-purchase and members asked to pre-book tickets in advance, online, here https://bristolzoo.org.uk/online-booking.

Film fan on cinema roof

Nailsea People was invited to a rooftop inspection of the work being undertaken at the Curzon cinema, Clevedon, to fix its leaking roof. With no head for heights editor Carol Deacon nominated former Clevedon Mercury reporter and intrepid adventurer Laura Durrant who lives in the town to tackle the task. Reopening is planned for October. Here is what Laura has to say and some of her images are in the slideshow top:

 

High above the roofs of the shops that make up Clevedon town centre a team of dedicated builders and architects have been hard at work. Corbel, a company that specialises in the restoration of heritage buildings, has been carrying out repairs and renovations on the roof of one of Clevedon’s most loved buildings – The Curzon in Old Church Road.

For more than 108 years the cinema has been at the heart of the town, running through two World Wars, the Spanish flu, and the rise of television and media streaming services. Over the years the roof began to leak, which saw buckets being dotted around to catch the drips. However, the situation reached crisis point at the end of 2018, when water began to come through into the auditorium.

A major fundraising bid was launched to raise £600,000 to repair the roof, and the public responded generously. Along with a grant from the National Lottery Heritage Fund this total was reached, and work began on the roof on Monday, February 24, with the first three weeks alone being spent on putting up the extensive scaffolding around the building.

Site manager Arthur Murray spoke about the work, saying that a lot of research has gone into the project to keep it as authentic as possible. He said: “The tiles we have used are very close in looks to the original ones. The problem we found with a roof this size is that we needed a reliable source of tiles in case of further repairs in the future.

”Work being carried out includes replacing the decaying timber on the top floor and the replacement of rainwater goods."

All the 12,380 terracotta tiles are also being replaced, and this number will include the tiles from the successful Tag A Tile initiative. The public got behind the campaign, where they were asked to write messages on a tile, to be included in the finished roof. From marking birthdays and anniversaries, to remembering loved ones, more than 750 were tagged. There is still time to get involved and to learn more click HERE.

Repairs to the north side of the roof are taking slightly longer as it is in a worse condition. The south side fared much better, with the exception of one corner, where water was seeping in.

All being well, the work on the roof is expected to be finished by the end of September, ready for the cinema to reopen to the public in October.  Then staff face another challenge, complying with the Covid 19 restrictions and social distancing. As it is something completely new preparations are already underway to adhere to the government guidelines.

Chair of Trustees Hillary Neal said staff were keen to welcome people back. She said: We want to give people the confidence that they can come and see a film knowing that we have followed all the guidelines and advice. We will do whatever is n necessary to be able to open, and we are looking forward to having people back.”

The cinema, which has 320 seats, will be scaled down to 90 to meet social distancing guidelines, and seats will be dotted around in groups of two, four and six, for household bubbles. They are also looking into numbering seats, so people will be given a space to sit, and doing a full deep clean in between each showing.

The Curzon has proven that it can weather any storm, and with the backing and support of the public it will continue to do so for many years to come.

Laura Durrant

PHOTOS: Taken by Peter Burden, Portishead councillor and planning guru, Monday, August 3, 2020

IT’S THE FIESTA BUT NOT AS YOU KNOW IT!

Balloons over North Somerset and Bristol this summer and the nightglow take place online and at Ashton Court.

This is to adhere to government guidelines on social distancing.

This is part of the inaugural Fiesta Flypast taken by Peter Burden which saw iconic balloons airbourne.

People were invited to watch the balloons from the safety of their own doorsteps and gardens.

BBC Radio Bristol will broadcast another lockdown treat, in the form of a virtual nightglow, staged with extra special additions and a soundtrack produced to lift the spirits of the city on Saturday, August 8.

The Bristol International Balloon Fiesta will return to Ashton Court on Thursday–Sunday, August 12-15, 2021

Library re-opens on Monday, August 10

The phased re-opening of library buildings offering limited services in North Somerset begins on Monday, August 3, at Weston with Nailsea following a week later.

Customers will be able to borrow books using self-service facilities and use computers by prior booking at the For All Healthy Living Centre Library in Weston-super-Mare and at Clevedon Library.

Opening hours will be limited, so please check before visiting.

It is planned that Nailsea, Portishead and Yatton libraries will also open for these services from Monday, August 10

The dates for the re-opening of the other libraries in North Somerset will be announced soon. 

The contact-free click and connect service where staff select books for customers to collect at pre-arranged times will continue to be offered by all libraries and the expanded online services, including free eBooks and downloadable eAudio books, will also continue.

North Somerset Council executive member for leisure, culture and tourism Caritas Charles said: "The libraries re-opening in this stage have been chosen to maximise the benefits for our communities, by ensuring a good geographic spread across the area, prioritising sites with higher footfall and targeting localities where unemployment rates are growing and where digital exclusion levels are high.

"As our libraries re-open they will look and feel quite different from the ones that were closed back in March and customers will be asked to follow safety procedures when visiting them." 

Opening hours will be restricted and customers will be encouraged to limit the time they spend in the library.

Staff will not be able to offer face-to-face enquiries or assistance with computers, seating areas will be reduced and there will be no events or activities and no newspapers or reference material available.

Customers will be asked to respect a two-metre distance, sanitise their hands on entry and wear a face covering if possible.

The number of people allowed in the library at any one time will be restricted, so customers may have a short wait before they can enter. 

In addition, libraries will take details of customers to support NHS Test and Trace.

All books on loan at the start of lockdown have been extended until the beginning of September and books can now be returned in drop-boxes at all libraries.

They will then be quarantined for a safe period before other people can borrow them.

More information about the temporary opening hours and the click and collect service can be found at www.n-somerset.gov.uk/librarycollect.

Computer sessions can be booked by contacting the libraries direct.

Contact details and details of services available at other libraries can be found at www.n-somerset.gov.uk/libraries.

More information about online library services, including free eBooks and newspapers and online events and activities, is available at www.n-somerset.gov.uk/onlinelibrary.

1908s STARS: Come on down on Friday, July 31, for an 80s party in the garden at The Star at Tickenham.

Hosted by resident drag artist Mayzie La Rue aka Joe Kerbyson this promises to be a fun and fabulous night of retro music to take you all back to a pop-tastic time. Forget about this year and party like its 1989.

  • All COVID-19 guidelines will still be in place and its advised to book your table for this event; and

  • Risk assessments have all been done and approved by council so we can all party the night away.

Free shot for anyone dressed in your iconic 80s fashion.

The Star 'wanna see big shoulders and power suits all night and just like Madonna the night will embrace Material Girls'.

BOOKING AHEAD: Adverture Cinema presents Grease Sing-A-Long (PG) on Tuesday, August 17, 2021, at Clevedon Hall on Elton Road. Gates open at 7.15pm and the film starts shortly after sunset at 8.45pm. This is an amazing outdoor cinema experience. Running time is 1hr 50mins. Bring picnic, blanket and camping chair to watch the film on a giant screen under the stars. Hot food, snacks plus on-site bar. Please note: U16s must be accompanied by an adult. Tickets from £15.98. Luxury deckchair tickets in prime position SOLD OUT. More information HERE.

Ashton Gate stadium kicks of drive-in cinema season

Bristol’s first drive-in cinema is coming this summer to somewhere more used to hosting sport and outdoor music concerts.

With the coronavirus pandemic putting a stop to the usual events hosted at Ashton Gate Stadium, however, the venue has teamed up with an outdoor cinema specialist for four nights of family-friendly films.

Subject to the latest government guidelines, the Winterstoke Road car park will host the drive-in cinema over one weekend in July and one weekend in August, with the films due to be announced soon.

Punters will not need to leave the comfort of their own cars on Friday, July 24 and Saturday, July 25; and Friday, August 21 and Saturday, August 22.

Movie-goers will park in front of a 10-metre wide inflatable screen provided by Skylight Cinema in the car park, which has previously been the home to the Euro and World Cup fan villages.

Food and drink will able to be ordered, with in-car Bluetooth speaker technology to ensure the best audio quality.

And show goes on...

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Nailsea annual flower show is going ahead on Saturday, August 8, but not in the format we know.

Contrary to the coronavirus, summer 2020 will bloom but it will be a virtual display of garden produce and florals on online.

The virtual flower show is being put together by four gallant garden fans Carol Eskell, Sarah Goulty, Sarah Hearne and Keith Norwood with the blessing of Nailsea & District Horticultural Society who are responsible for past events.

This year there are 17 different classes including vegetables, fruit, flowers, cake decoration, handicraft and children’s classes with three sections devoted to photography.

For more details of this novel social media event and to download the programme and entry form click on poster.

The deadline for photographs sent by email to nailseaflowershow@gmail.com is Friday, August 7.

The fun element is included but there will be no Filton Concert Brass Band or presentation of the silver polished trophies.

Nor sadly will the atrium at Nailsea School be filled with colourful exhibits and fantastic smells.

The first Nailsea flower show was in 1853 and apart from two world wars has run annually nearly every year since.

Usually the ‘daffodil’ dominate the spring show and in the summer is when the fruit and veg come to the fore.

All-in-all window box of wonders grown in gardens, allotments, greenhouses and plant pots.

If you would like to view photographs of flower shows past on Nailsea People reports and winners are on the Flower Peeps page and photograph in Gallery 2019.

Joint show secretary Martyn Davies from 2019 said: “The biggest reward for us is in seeing so many people enjoying themselves, meeting up with friends, and making the show a very special social event for the town."

Good luck to the fab four trying to make 2020 happen.

Bristol zoo open again

Bristol Zoo Gardens is opening its doors again on Tuesday, July 14, after the longest closure in its 185 year history.

The oldest regional zoo in the world has been shut for more than 100 days after closing at the start of the lockdown on March 20.

During that time keepers have welcomed a host of new arrivals as life for the thousands of animals in their care has carried on.

They include a tiny tree kangaroo joey which emerged from his mother’s pouch during the closure. Staff at the Bristol Royal Infirmary chose the name Kiri for the little tree kangaroo which means ‘laugh’ in its native Papua New Guinea. 

It is the first time the zoo has bred a tree kangaroo and Kiri is one of only two bred successfully in captivity in the UK during the past 12 months.

It’s been a busy time for the bird keepers despite the closure, as they have seen the arrival of two kea chicks, six brightly coloured sun conures, five hoopoe chicks and an African penguin chick, among many more.

Keepers and the zoo veterinary staff have been working on site throughout the closure ensuring the animals have continued to receive the best possible care.

Bristol Zoological Society which runs Bristol Zoo Gardens chief executive Dr Justin Morris said: “We are thrilled to be opening our doors again and welcoming people back. We have really missed our visitors, members and supporters.

“Never before, not even during the Second World War, have we been closed for such a long time.

"It’s a great step forward and I’d like to thank everyone for the incredible support they have shown us during this difficult time.”

When the zoo reopens to the public there will be a host of additional health and safety measures in place including a timed ticketing system, one-way routes and extra hand washing facilities, to ensure the safety of visitors and staff.

But Dr Morris warned that it is still a difficult time for zoos due to huge revenue losses and ongoing concerns about future revenue.

He added: “We are very much hoping that people will continue showing us the fantastic support we have received over the past few months, and our fundraising appeal continues to be essential.”

Visitors to Bristol Zoo are now asked to pre-purchase and members asked to pre-book tickets in advance, online HERE.

Bristol Zoological Society, which operates Bristol Zoo Gardens and Wild Place Project, is a conservation and education charity and relies on the generous support of the public not only to fund its important work at Wild Place Project and Bristol Zoo, but also its vital conservation and research projects spanning five continents.

In March the Society launched an appeal to ensure the future of its work ‘saving wildlife together’.

The Society, which is a registered charity, has launched the BZS Appeal following the temporary closure of both its sites in Bristol in the face of the Covid-19 pandemic.

To find out more, or to make a donation click HERE.

ZOO VISITS: Noah’s Ark is re-opened. The Wraxall zoo farm like Nailsea People pages is gradually coming out of furlough so you can read full story HERE on its own page on this website. Please note admission tickets must be bought online beforehand at https://www.noahsarkzoofarm.co.uk/.

Kitty cat on prowl at Wild Place

This is the first glimpse of a lynx kitten born at Bristol’s Wild Place Project.

Photographer Josh Biggs took this stunning image as the tiny kitten peered out from a bush in the zoo’s Bear Wood exhibit.

It is one of a litter, believed to be the first in a UK Zoo this year, born to five-year-old mum, Loka, and dad Zone, who is four.

Since they were born five weeks ago mum Loka has been keeping the kittens hidden just as she would in the wild.

But now the kittens are beginning to venture out more so visitors have a good chance of seeing them.

Keepers think they are two kittens in the litter.

The picture was taken following the re-opening of Wild Place after it a 13 week closure due to COVID-19.

Wild Place Project animal manager Will Walker said Loka had made a den in a hollow under a log and was showing all the signs of being a very attentive mother.

He said: “We are all delighted at this successful breeding – our first lynx kittens at Wild Place. To begin with the kittens are completely helpless, blind and unable to regulate their own body temperature, so Loka kept them well hidden.

"Their births are very important for the conservation breeding programme for this amazing species, which once roamed wild in the UK.”

It will be 10 months before the newly born kittens will be independent and up to three years before they are fully mature.

Loka arrived at Wild Place Project from Skanes Djurpark in Sweden and Zone was brought from Highland Wildlife Park in Kincraig, Scotland almost a year ago.

It is approxiamately 1,000 years since lynx were last found in the wild in Britain but visitors to Bear Wood can see them in British woodland as they would have once lived.

They live alongside European brown bears, wolverine and wolves.

Today, in the wild, they are found in deciduous and mixed forests in Europe and Russia, Central Asia and as far as the Arctic tundra.

Bear Wood, which is sponsored by Natracare, tells the story of the UK’s ancient woodland and the charismatic species that once inhabited it, such as bears, wolves, lynxes and wolverines.

But Bear Wood isn’t just about what we’ve lost. It’s also about protecting what we have left. It inspires visitors to value and protect native woodland habitats and species – a sentiment that staff at Wild Place Project hope visitors will value now more than ever before.

Today only two per cent of Britain’s ancient woodland has survived being cut down, and offers a vital habitat for threatened species such as greater-spotted woodpeckers, tawny owls and hedgehogs.

Walk on wild side

European brown bears and grey wolves have begun living side by side together for the first time in a UK zoo down the road from Nailsea.
The four bears and the five wolves have been given access to the same woodland exhibit at Wild Place Project at Cribbs Causeway.

After some initial curiosity and playful chasing, the two species were soon quietly sharing the same space beneath the trees of Bear Wood as they would have done in this country thousands of years ago.

It is a huge milestone for Wild Place which reopened this week after a 13-week closure due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The South Gloucestershire wildlife park welcomed visitors from Friday, June 19, with a host of new measures in place, including essential buying of tickets online in advance for timed entry slots, to ensure the safety of visitors and staff.

Wild Place Project staff said they were excited for the public to see the bears and wolves living together. 
Animal manager Will Walker said: “It is a wonderful sight to see these amazing animals next to each other as they would have once lived here in the wild.

“We hoped they would settle in well together because they had lived in adjacent paddocks for several months, so have been used to the sights, sounds and smells of each other.

“Despite that, there was still a sense of excitement and trepidation when we mixed them for the first time, and we all knew that we were watching history unfold before us. 
"We are very happy to say that there have been no signs of aggression and the two species are living quite contentedly alongside each other.”

Will said keepers had been planning the move for weeks before the four bears and five wolves were finally introduced, with the bears kept in a separate area of woodland while the wolves were allowed to get used to the bears’ main woodland paddock area first.

Will added: “We are all thrilled that it has gone so well. 
"From now on the bears and wolves have daily access to the same area and we are delighted that our visitors will be able to see these two magnificent species living together, as we prepare to reopen.”

The diets of bears and wolves are naturally very different, and so the two species will not compete for food. The award-winning exhibit has been specifically designed to accommodate the needs of all the animals that live there. 

The wolves can spend time away from the bears if they wish, as they have the option to leave the 11,000 square metre woodland exhibit and enter their own separate area.

Bear Wood, which is sponsored by Natracare, is home to wolverines and lynxes as well as wolves and bears. It tells the story of British ancient woodland from 8,000 BC to the present day, when bears, wolves, lynxes and wolverines were native to the UK. 

It also inspires visitors to value and protect native woodland habitats and species – a sentiment that staff at Wild Place Project hope visitors will value now more than ever before.

Wild Place Project is also home to species from across the world, including giraffes, cheetahs, lemurs, meerkats, geladas, okapis, red-river hogs and elands.

ANIMAL MAGIC: Keeper Will Walker and the bears and wolves at The Wild Place near Cribbs Causway M5 junction

It is also home to three zebra, including Vera the attraction’s new, two week old zebra foal.

The South Gloucestershire zoo will reopen to the public with a host of additional health and safety measures in place including a timed ticketing system, one-way routes and extra hand washing facilities, to ensure the safety of visitors and staff.

Visitors to Wild Place are now asked to pre-purchase and members asked to pre-book tickets in advance, online, here wildplace.org.uk/plan-your-visit/online-tickets 

To find out more about the steps Wild Place is taking to protect visitors and staff from the spread of coronavirus, please visit wildplace.org.uk/plan-your-visit/FAQs

Additional rules have also been put in place, which are available to view here wildplace.org.uk/plan-your-visit/site-rules 

Bristol Zoological Society, which operates Bristol Zoo Gardens and Wild Place Project, is a conservation and education charity and relies on the generous support of the public not only to fund its important work at Wild Place Project and Bristol Zoo, but also its vital conservation and research projects spanning five continents. 

The Society recently launched an appeal to ensure the future of its work ‘saving wildlife together’. The Society, which is a registered charity, has launched the BZS Appeal following the temporary closure of both its sites in Bristol in the face of the Covid-19 pandemic.

To find out more, or to make a donation click HERE.

GO GIRL: One week later than originally planned Lacey Francomb set out on a sponsored to walk from Nailsea to Clevedon on Sunday, June 7. Her target of raising £150 for urgent repairs to her performing arts school studio has been surpassed sixfold. Tillie made the banner which greeted her on the halfway makr on the 13 mile route and the trek took nearly five hours. You can still donate HERE. Well done Lacey

Sponsored steps for dance school

On Sunday, May 31, 14-year-old Lacey Francomb is going on a sponsored walk from her Nailsea home to Clevedon to raise money for her performing arts school.

The dance studio is currently closed due to COVID-19 although it is offering online classes for both current students and new faces.

But TSPA Studios at Britanna Way, Clevedon, cannot reopen fully when lockdown conditions lift unless it gets a new air conditioning unit fitted costing more than £14,000.

Mum Kate said: ‘Lacey is doing this to raise money for Tillies School of Performing Arts.

“Unfortunately classes at the school had to stop in March due to coronavirus which has caused financial problems and now TSPA owner Tillie Fern has now been told that she has to have a brand new air conditioning system installed which is going to cost thousands.

“Lacey has attended classes at TSPA for about five years since it opened and just loves it there.”

The fault in the current air conditioning was discovered in a routine check and it was declared unsafe and needs to be removed.

The Backwell School student is not the only young person from Nailsea to attend TSPA which is very much part of our community and enters the Nailsea Carnival every year, added Kate.

Tillie said: “The COVID-19 pandemic has meant we sadly had to close our studio doors in March, but we are keeping in touch with our students via online classes and videos.

“From a business point of view this has been pretty devastating.

“Unfortunately we were delivered another huge blow during a routine air conditioning service - all three air con/heating units have been labelled unsafe for further use and as our only source of heating/cooling need replacing before we can reopen our doors.

“The students, teachers and families of TSPA are rallying together to raise funds for the new air con and amazing student Lacey, is completing a sponsored 11-mile walking challenge from Nailsea to Clevedon and back at the end of May.

“We have been fortunate enough to have secured a Government backed loan to cover this cost initially, but we will need to make repayments.”

THANK YOU PETAL: A big thank you to the gardeners who gave trays full of plants to the Nailsea In Bloom group on Wednesday, May 27. Organisers Wendy Mobbs and Liz Frappell received the donations which will help to brighten our town centre planters. Wendy said: “Like all the other groups Nailsea in Bloom is not be receiving any plants from the contractors this year for the summer planting due to the coronavirus.” Wendy and Liz are pictured on the village green next to the old glassworks cauldron on Wednesday morning receiving the green gifts.

Planting for summer season

Last month Nailsea In Bloom group put out an appeal for plants to brighten our town centre.

Organiser Wendy Mobbs said: “Like all the other groups Nailsea in Bloom will not be receiving any plants from the contractors this year for the summer planting due to the coronavirus. 

“Because of this we are trying to think of what we will be able to do come the time that we will be able to go out and do something with the planters.

“One of our group has suggested that we ask all gardeners in Nailsea if they are planting any seeds if they can plant any extra seeds and grow them on for the group so that we can hopefully have some sort of display for the town. 

“If anyone is taking cuttings or have plants in pots these could potentially all be used just to bring some colour to the town once we are all allowed out to enjoy it.”

On Wednesday, May 27, 10-11am Wendy will be on the village green to collect any donations. For people who need plants collected please email Wendy.mobbs@outlook.com.

PHOTOS: The old glassworks ‘cauldron’ which was made a feature for the Nailsea in Bloom gold award-winning entry in 2009 is pictured top in May 2020. The cauldron was discovered abandoned on farmland in Tickenham and presented to Nailsea & District Horticultural Society whose gardeners spearheaded the floral beautification of the town. Also pictured is the old oak tree on the village green which appears to have had a short, back and sides which is more than can be said for many Nailsea people unable to get to a hairdressers during lockdown

Hairy bikers go hairless

May 2020
Peter Colley
John Colley
David Elliott
Dave Moorcroft

EGG HEADS: They set a target of £1,000 for their sponsored headshave in aid of Children's Hospice South West saying if they reached their goal they would shave their beards off too - obviously excluding the schoolboy. The grand total made by the famous five was £1,100 so beards had to be removed, painlessly. It is not too late to donate here https://bit.ly/3d05LId - and a big thank you to all. ​​The stunts were streamed 'live' on the Nailsea Bikers Facebook page which has additional information about the group which organised the annual Nailsea International Bike Show.

  • Rolls Royce engineer John Colley, aged 55;

  • Nailsea School student Peter Colley, 11, who did a similar charity stunt two years ago for CHSW when he had shoulder length hair shorn;

  • Software engineer David Elliott, 38;

  • Quality engineer Dave Moorcroft, 52, and

  • Long distance motorcyclist + freelance construction manager Phillip Weston, 70.

Phillip Weston

CHSW 1,2 & 3 challenges

One of the most serious consequences of the fundraising cancellations is all the charities struggling for cash.

On our doorstep is Children’s Hospice South West at Charlton Farm, Wraxall.

Currently there are three ongoing fundraisers supporting the hospice.

Please help if you can.

CHALLENGE 1

Jean Cridland and her friend Pam Taylor decided to do something to help the CHSW during the Covid 19 lockdown.

Both in their 70s, these two Nailsea grandmothers knew they could both still hoola hoop and so decided to raise money by doing so for 26 minutes on 26 consecutive days.

Their initial goal was to raise £100 but on Friday, May 22, which was day 26, when they finished (well done both!) they had reached and amazing £976.

Jean came up with 26 innovative ways of hoola hooping in character and put them on Facebook each day (under Jean Cridland).

They are very funny and my favourite has to be Jean Blonde!

Husband Malcolm filmed each day and acted as Jean’s stooge and it is pure comedy gold.

Well done to these wonderfully impressive ladies for getting up and doing something to help a very worthy local cause.

Can we help them reach a magnificent £1,000?

Click HERE to give.

CHALLENGE 2

Gordano Ladies Rugby which includes one Nailsea player Samantha Adams has kicked off a 50:50 challenge.

To celebrate Gordano Rugby Football Club's 50th year, the ladies team decided to complete 50km in five days.

The 50km can be completed by any means - walking, running, cycling, rowing or crawling.

Funds raised will be shared between CHSW and Next Link.

The sponsored team has already completed 224.7km.

They are sharing donations between Be Incredible for the Children's Hospice South West and Next Link Domestic Abuse Services.

To support click HERE.

 

CHALLENGE 3

Going live on Saturday afternoon, May 23, five Nailsea bikers get their heads shaved. Read more below.

To support click HERE.

What's NOT On

It is easier to tell Nailsea People what's ‘not’ on rather than what's on this summer.

The pre March What's On page has been furloughed and now it has only online/virtual events and not many of those.

All those events from carnival to flower show, from beer & cider festivals to May fair, from Nailsea School PTA summer draw to school prom have been cancelled or postponed like Glastonbury and the Olympics 2020.

Only two planned events are undecided:

  • Nailsea Summer School which runs for the first fortnight of the school holidays. Organisers say the will wait until Thursday, June 18, before making a definitive decision and are not taking bookings at this time. UPDATE: It is cancelled; and

  • 11th annual Nailsea International Bike Show which is pencilled in for at the Ring O’Bells on Saturday and Sunday, September 12- 13th September

One of the last to go is the annual skate festival – which attracts young competitors from across the area.

The 18th annual coming of age festival, which has become a major date in the skate community calendar was due to take at the skate park at Millennium Park on Saturday, June 6.

Organisers of the event met earlier this week to discuss the festival and made the painful decision to postpone it to the autumn.

Organiser Phil Williams said: “Unfortunately we had no choice but to postpone the event from its scheduled date of June 6.

“We realise this is a great disappointment for all those looking forward to it, but sadly after looking at all the possibilities had no choice.

“However, all at the meeting were keen to see whether we could reschedule the event when things settle down and that probably means in the autumn.”

The team is now planning other virtual events instead of the festival, including picture competitions, re-runs of some of the other skate festival video edits.

There are also plans to stream pre recorded and live imputs on the day of the event which can be followed via the Nailsea Skatepark Project, and Nailsea Skatefest & Activities Showcase Facebook pages.

A spring clean of the skate park is also planned with volunteers being sought to help.

The skate park remains closed due to the Government lockdown.

However, some are continuing to flout the regulations.

Phil added: “Unfortunately the skate park is still officially closed, and to the huge percentage of users who are respecting that, thank you.

“To the one of two of you reading this who might be sneaking back on, we really would encourage you to avoid doing this, as its not helping the communities current great support of the park, as well as the fact that you run the risk of being fined as breaking the guidance legislation.

“We are all really missing it and once it is safe to use it again with revised guidelines, we will be the first to let you know.”

Anyone with questions or ideas on how to make June 6 a fun day remotely contact Phil Williams phil@christiansurfers.co.uk.

Nailsea Bikers bad hair day for very good cause

Having a bad hair day?

Well a group of Nailsea Bikers are going for the very short, back and sides look for charity in the hope of raising £1,000 for Children’s Hospice South West.

Biker John Colley said: “While Nailsea Bikers are isolated at home and unable to get out on our bikes we have had plenty of time to think about how lucky we are having healthy families.

“Our chosen charity the Children's Hospice South West (CHSW) support those who are not so fortunate.

“They are funded entirely through fundraising but unfortunately the Covid19 crisis has forced them to cancel many of their usual events leaving them very short of funds. 

“Nailsea Bikers have been trying to work out how to help them through this tough time and several of us have decided to have a sponsored head shave.

“In three weeks we will post videos on the Nailsea Bikers Facebook page of our members losing their locks to help this amazing charity continue their incredible work.

“I think we are all going for the full headshave rather than a crew cut.”

Those taking part pictured from top at end of May include:

  • Rolls Royce engineer John Colley, aged 55;

  • Nailsea School student Peter Colley, 11, who did a similar charity stunt two years ago for CHSW when he had shoulder length hair shorn;

  • Software engineer David Elliott, 38;

  • Quality engineer Dave Moorcroft, 52, and

  • Long distance motorcyclist and freelance construction manager Phillip Weston, 70.

To sponsor the haircut from hell go to their JustGiving page, it is simple, fast and totally secure to give – click HERE.

Charlton Farm at Wraxall is run by CHSW to help and supports children and their families who are living with life-limiting conditions.

They provide a loving and caring place for the whole family. A place where everyone can find expert care and support in facing an uncertain future.

This year should see the 11th International Nailsea Bike Show in September at Ring O’Bells on St Mary’s Grove, Nailsea.

This is when 100s of vehicles go on show at the St Mary’s Grove pub from 1940s Indians to modern sports bikes and customs.

The event has raised more than £21,000 over the years for CHSW, supported other charities like the Nailsea District Leg Club and gives a platform for talented local musicians as part of the programme of entertainment.

John said: “We are currently still hoping to run the 2020 Nailsea International bike show as planned on Saturday and Sunday, September 12-13.

“However, we may have to review this depending on developments in the current Covid19 crisis.

“Updates on the situation will be posted on our Facebook page.”​

Nailsea People has a page dedicated to the 2019 bike show with lots of photos - it is HERE

  • CLEAR IMAGE: Rolls Royce engineer John Colley, who is currently working from home, and son Peter furloughed from school are keeping busy printing 3D visor frame and ear saver straps for the national health service and sign writer friend Dan Green, of Image Signs, at Unit 3, Noel's Siding Industrial Estate, St Georges, Weston-super-Mare is cutting the clear plastic for them

Hula-hooping for children's hospice

Nailsea pair Jean Cridland and Pam Taylor are taking on an unusual challenge to support their local children’s hospice.

The duo are both hula-hooping for 26 minutes every day for 26 days to raise vital funds for Children’s Hospice South West (CHSW).
Jean and Pam are both aged 70 plus and self-isolating – they each have children and grandchildren and when they heard about the 2.6 Challenge, they wanted to do something special to support a charity caring for children and families during the coronavirus crisis.

Jean and Pam are now more than a week into their challenge and have raised ovin excess of £ so far and are hoping to raise much more.

The charity, which is based at Charlton Farm, in Wraxall has adapted its day-to-day care provision to provide support to vulnerable children in the community.

In addition to care being provided to families already known to the charity, the care team is working with the NHS and other local care providers to offer support to other vulnerable children and young people, helping keep hospital admissions down and freeing up essential resources needed to respond to the coronavirus outbreak.

CHSW community fundraiser Emma Parker said "Jean and Pam are an inspiration.

"It’s certainly no mean feat hula hooping for 26 days, but by taking on the challenge they will literally help to maintain a lifeline for families.

"We are all cheering them on!"

If you would like to support Jean and Pam cllick HERE.

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