The Abingdon Blog

The Abingdon Blog is a photo record of events and places in Abingdon, Oxfordshire, started on January 1st 2006.

Saturday, 21 November 2009

Mayor's Charity Quiz Night

Paul Mayhew Archer was the quiz master giving out the chocolates. During the quiz Paul higlighted one round where all questions were about Mayors including.... Dick Whittington - four times Lord Mayor of London - married into which Wantage Family?

It was a packed Guildhall. You just could not have fitted another quiz team in.

And it was the final time that this lady will be organising the catering at the Guildhall, She has been there for many years.

Dick Whittington - four times Lord Mayor of London - married into the Fitzwarren family. The winning quiz team this year came from Bicester. So one final question for them or anybody else...

Who wrote this Limerick?

There was an old soldier of Bicester,
Was walking one day with his sister,
A bull, with one poke,
Toss'd her into an oak,
Before the old gentleman miss'd her.

Friday, 20 November 2009

Plan B Lift

There was another well attended public meeting to look at the plans for the County Hall / Museum development as they will now be presented to the National Lottery.

Planning permission has been granted. A decision will be made by the National Lottery in March 2010 as to whether they will release the remaining money, from the £2m grant, to let the scheme go ahead. If it does go ahead then work is likely to start in September 2010.

Much of the plans to improve the building are essentially unchanged: such as essential maintenance ( something that English Heritage have not funds for because of government cuts to their budget over a long time), and improving the main museums spaces to bring them up to scratch and fit them for the next 50 year .

But the question of The Lift remains a controversial topic.

Dr Andrew Brown from English Heritage and Adrian Kitt the architect from Ridge partners hold here the new plan for the Abingdon museum lift. Unfortunately the plan for a lift to the session hall (first floor) were turned down by The English Heritage Central Committee a couple of months ago. They thought it was too intrusive on the look of such a nationally important building. A lot of people in the hall were unhappy at that decision, including a lady in a wheelchair.

But there is a Plan B Lift.

With this lift there is not much to show above ground - apart from a fence to protect the roof. It is a platform lift to the basement and undercroft.

As part of the modified plan disabled facilities will be provided in other more imaginative ways. The original lift was estimated at about £xy0,000 and the new lift is expected to be much lower - depending on the tender exercise.

But once a lift shaft is sunk, it could be adapted by a future generation.

Thursday, 19 November 2009


Robert Southey, the chief coach of Abingdon Town Amateur Boxing Club, was at Blenheim Palace recently for a special awards ceremony for people who have served young people for a long time. He started helping at the boxing club as a teenager...

which is how he came by this Planitum award for 40 years of voluntary service for young people and still going strong. His biggest campaign at the moment is to raise money for a gym in South Abingdon.

(On 12th December the Boxing Club has a sponsored darts marathon from 12 noon to 12 midnight to raise money towards the new gym. There will also be a Santas Grotto in the afternoon at the Crown and Thistle. )

Wednesday, 18 November 2009

A New Green Plaque

This Stone Building, next to Albert Park, now has an explanatory green plaque...

Are there any other buildings in Abingdon that need a green plaque to explain what they are?

Tuesday, 17 November 2009

Litter Pickers

Thanks to Tim for these pictures. The people shown are all members of the Tithe Farm and Ladygrove Residents Association - headed by Eleanor Dangerfield who was also present but out of the picture

The trolley depicted was retrieved from the Ock and then loaded with the detritus that had gathered in the surrounding area.

Here is another view of the same trolley so there is no mistaking it. Litter Picking is an old tradition in those parts, as is the residents newsletter which is NOW ONLINE .

Monday, 16 November 2009

Thresher & The Local

Thresher, at Peachcroft,

and The Local, on Ock Street, are part of the much larger First Quench Group - a private equity firm, that has gone into administration.

The administrator, KPMG, has already announced the closure of 373 loss-making shops and the two Abingdon Shops were not in that announcement, although notices have appeared saying that due to being in administration some services like Paypoint have been suspended.

Newspaper reports say there is interest in buying the rest of the group.

Sunday, 15 November 2009

Shoebox Appeal

This year, in Abingdon, hundreds of shoeboxes have been packed full of gifts and goodies ready to be sent to children in disadvantaged situations. There was a dedication service this morning at Abingdon Baptist Church, before the shoeboxes were sent round the world. For more information visit Operation Christmas Child.