Puzzle for the FHG

Written by John Webster on .

At the latest meeting of the Forncett History Group an item noted on Ebay generated a great deal of discussion. The postcard – acquired in the end by another party unknown to us – showed a young man with a pony and cart/trap.

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Closer analysis of the image showed the name ‘J. HUMPHREYS’ to be on the side of the trap. The Chairman then explained how Dennis Ludkin had been quite challenged by this and set about comparing older larger scale maps to see if a similar range of buildings to that on the photo could be found. Dennis had pinpointed a small group near Chestnut Farm as being comparable. Discussion then turned on the shape of the buildings and established that the building in the foreground might well be separate from the main range, which would correspond with the representation on one of the maps (see detail of map of 1906). One would have to bear in mind that the angle and direction of the photo would mean that Chestnut Cottage was obscured by the other buildings.

Thanks to the detective work of Dennis L. and useful discussion at the FHG it would seem that the location has been reasonably established. We still do not know for certain who the young man is and why he was photographed at this place. James (‘Jimmy’) HUMPHREYS was the baker at Forncett End at Harley House. With evidence from copied documents referred to by the Chairman it was shown that J.H. had fallen on hard times and by 1924 was declared bankrupt. It was pointed out that his fate reflected the social problems of the times. His assets included various fixtures and fittings and ‘pony, cart and harness’, valued at £25.

Murder Mystery Feb 17

Written by Brian Frith on .

Photos of the Murder Mystery play 'Murder at the Village Hall' on Saturday and Sunday 18th and 19th February 2017.  

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Photos by Anne Frith and John Wilde

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Full cast list (from first photo):

Back Row: Sheila Gale (Prompt); John Wilde (Inspector Halfpenny); Sarah House (the late Lavinia, Lady Forncett, Chair of the Committee)
Front Row: April Carlin (Peggy); Peter Schmidt-Hansen (Norman); Gill Starkie (Saffron); Brian Frith (Reg); Jackie Smith (Millicent); Graham Gale (Hugo, Lord Forncett)

Carols by Candlelight & Step into Christmas

Written by May Prior on .

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photos by May Prior
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A packed church enjoyed a lovely carol service in St. Mary's Church on 4th December. Philip Aldred and 'Dolce' choir performed 4 pieces, including everyone's favourite 'O Holy Night.' John Metcalf's stunning displays in the windows and font much admired by everyone. Mulled wine and mince pies were served in the village hall after the service.

For a few days in December, St Mary's Church was transformed into a mini theatre, with spotlights, coloured lights, mist and snow machines, for two performances of 'Step into Christmas.'  Produced and directed by Paul Blake, (originally from Forncett), and his cast of 16, who have all previously performed in local amateur dramatic groups, most recently the Tasburgh Players before they folded in 2012.

Delighted packed audiences enjoyed a varied and fast moving show: from traditional carols and readings, to ' Santa Baby', 'Mistletoe and Wine' , 'As long as there's Christmas', and everyone's favourite, 'White Christmas'. A rousing finale of 'I wish it could be Christmas every day' had the audience clapping and singing along.

Solos and duets performed by Paul, Trevor, Sharon, Laura, Wendy, Sonia and 15 yr old Katie, readings by Sharon, John and Lenny, and the 'Tech Team' of Paul Smith on lighting and Neil Pitcher on sound made sure it was a perfect festive atmosphere.

A big thank you to them all for their hard work rehearsing in the weeks leading up to the performances, and setting up the church with all the equipment and decorations. All proceeds from the performances will go towards the restoration fund. Thanks to the Tas Well bar for being open for refreshments.

We look forward to the next show! 

Diggers & Dibblers Quiz and Chips night

Written by Margaret Hickman Smith on .

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Photos by Su Leavesley
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The Diggers and Dibblers Quiz and Chips gave us a good start to the festive season. Everyone entered into the spirit of the occasion with tinsel, decorations and candles on Christmas themed tables.

Ladies in Red - AKA The Stocking Fillers- won the table prize but had strong competition from The Toffs who were impeccably dressed in evening attire with bow ties.

Alison had prepared delicious mulled wine which we drank while “mulling” over the first table puzzle.

John and Margaret Wilde as usual provided an excellent quiz – not too hard and not too easy – which resulted in a four-way tie for first place; Four Calling Birds, The Honeymooners, Goats of Christmas Past and Deepandcrispandeven. After a tricky tiebreak question the final winner was announced as Deepandcrispandeven.

Four Calling Birds (which included an honorary man!) won the table quiz prize and Bah Humbug took the loosing lemons. The raffle had some excellent prizes, mainly on a garden theme and most of them generously donated by local nurseries, and raised almost £120 For the Air Ambulance Thanks were given to John and Margaret, to the Committee for their hard work and to Andrew for impeccably keeping the score. A great evening was had by all.

Quiz Raffle prizes kindly donated by: Wymondham Garden Centre Cherry Lane Garden Centre, Highway Garden Centre, Myhills , The Foundry, Peter Beales Roses, The Garden Enclosure, Homestead Nursery. We would like to express our appreciation to all of the above.