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Summer and beyond in our Village Hall


Despite predicted disappointing summer weather the winds abated and the sun shone brightly as we welcomed an eclectic array of vintage items from a number of stall-holders. The marquees w

ere full of wonderful goodies to tempt those on their way into the hall for a quintessential English tea. To a background of big band music, guests enjoyed a traditional tea of cucumber sandwiches, cream teas, a huge selection of cakes and pots of English tea. We would like to thank all of our stall-holders, cake and scone makers, committee members and all those who enjoyed and supported the event.


DONHEAD FILM CLUB: ‘Fisherman’s Friends’ Thursday 12th September

The Donhead Film Club starts the new season with a film inspired by the true story of the Cornish singing group the Fisherman’s Friends, the all-male a cappella folk singing group from Port Isaac who in the nineties became an unexpected hit for their authentic sea shanties. Bound together by lifelong friendship and shared experience for more than 25 years the Fisherman’s Friends have met to raise money for charity, singing the traditional songs of the sea handed down to them by their forefathers

The sleepy fishing village of Port Isaac is where the Fisherman's Friends call home and it is also the main filming location. It's narrow winding streets are lined with old white-washed cottages which slope down to the famous harbour, known to locals as "The Platt". It is here that the Fisherman's Friends traditionally gathered to sing their songs of the sea beside the shore.

In 2010 the group signed a major record deal and their album "Port Isaac’s Fisherman’s Friends" went Gold as they became the first traditional folk act to land a UK top ten album. Since then they’ve been the subject of an ITV documentary, released the hit albums One and All (2013), Proper Job (2015) and Sole Mates (2018) and played to hundreds of thousands of fans at home and abroad. The film tells the story of the groups’ success.


Thank you to all of you who support this project and have taken advantage of the offer to help improve fitness with Mark Williams in our Village Hall. So far the total number of participants has been very encouraging for all the three sessions. Over the first four months of the project the 55 Plus classes have proved the most successful class followed by the Posture Correction and lastly Pilates. If you are interested in finding out more about this project please contact Mark Williams on Mobile: 07917 632765 or email: Or you can discuss the project at our second Open Coffee and Pastries morning on Saturday 14th September from 10.00am to 12.00 noon at our Village Hall.

THOMAS HARDY IN OUR VILLAGE HALL: This October the village hall has a special weekend of events to celebrate Thomas Hardy; not only one of the greatest of English novelists and poets but also a local writer whose profound influence on the way we see the Wessex countryside continues to this day. There will be a film screening, talks, music, readings and a walk around Shaftesbury, which Hardy described as “the city of a dream” and “one of the queerest and quaintest spots in England … breezy and whimsical”.

Booking is essential and all tickets are available from Anna McDowell:, tel: 01747 829010, or and can be booked individually. If you are interested in booking for all three events, there is a £2.00 discount. Please read on for details of each event.

Film: ‘Far from the Madding Crowd’ (1967) Friday 11th October

Film starts at 7.15 p.m. Doors open at 6.30 p.m. Tickets £5.00 each.

Hardy's lush and lyrical romance about 19th century rural life and its inner tensions has been turned into several films, but this is (arguably) the best. Directed by John Schlesinger, it tells the story of Bathsheba Everdene (Julie Christie), a beautiful young woman who inherits a Wessex farm from her uncle. Three very different suitors; Francis Troy (Terence Stamp), an intense soldier; William Boldwood (Peter Finch), a middle-aged farmer; and Gabriel Oak (Alan Bates), a shepherd of modest means, contend for Bathsheba's hand, and conflict is inevitable.

‘Thomas Hardy the Man’: an evening’s entertainment with supper

Saturday 12th October

Starts at 7.00 p.m. Tickets £12.00 each.

Thomas Hardy was born on 2 June 1840 at Higher Bockhampton, near Dorchester, and died at his beloved Max Gate on 11 January 1928. During the evening, folk fiddle player Emily Farewell will perform tunes that Hardy, who loved music, would have known well, while the novelist Christopher Nicholson will talk about Hardy’s long life and complex personality. There will be readings from Hardy’s poetry and novels. A light supper is included in the ticket price but please bring your own wine and drink.

Walk around Hardy’s Shaftesbury with Arthur Simmonds: Sunday 13th October

Starts at 3.00 p.m. and finishes at the Grosvenor Inn for a light tea at 4.00 p.m.

Tickets: £5.00 per person

Meet at the TIC in Bell Street, Shaftesbury, followed by tea after the walk.

WREATH MAKING: Saturday 23rd November

Details to follow

AUTUMN FAIR: Saturday 30th November

Details to follow

JON KENZIE ACOUSTIC GIG: Friday 6th December

We are delighted to announce the return of the acclaimed singer and song-writer Jon Kenzie to the village hall. His last gig was a sell out and much enjoyed by all who attended. His musical roots are firmly based in blues, folk and soul and he has worked his way around the world busking and performing to the delight of passers-by and audiences alike. Save the date; more details to follow!

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