Wednesday, 22 October 2014

Invitation to a Working Picnic - Sutton Mandeville Badges

A reminder that we are having a working picnic next Saturday, 25th October, for all that can make it. We are going to concentrate on strimming grass on the badge itself, but if you don’t have a strimmer you are still very welcome as there are other tasks to do also.

Incidentally, we have recently been able to confirm that the badge of the Shiny 7th (the City of London Battalion of the London Regiment) was cut around the end of March / beginning of April 1916, in time for the first anniversary of the formation of the 3/7th (their training battalion) on 5th April. We’ve been able to look at the letters of Eric Marchant during his time at Sutton Mandeville Camp, held by the Imperial War Museum. His letters provide a real insight on what it was like to be at Sutton Mandeville Camp in the First World War. Although we cannot yet be certain, it seems likely that the Royal Warwickshire badge was cut around the same time as the Warwicks were at Sutton at the same time as the Shiny 7th.


We shall meet at Sheep Well but we will access the site from the bottom rather than the top of the Down.

Please let me know if you are planning to attend either in the morning or the afternoon, or both!

At the moment the forecast is for it to be cloudy with sunny spells later: we won’t cancel unless the forecast is for torrential rain.

If you can’t make 25th October, the next working picnic is in just a few weeks, on Saturday 8th November, to coincide with Remembrance Sunday.

Here are the details:

Time – from 10am ‘til 3pm in two sessions – 10 ‘til 12 and 1 ‘til 3 with an hour break for lunch. Please feel free to join us for either session, or the whole day.

Place – Meet at Sheep Well where there is ample parking. The turning for Sheep Well is opposite Manor Farm on the A30. There will be a sign at the turning. Please take care whilst driving along the track as there are some deep ruts.

Catering – please bring a picnic / packed lunch.

Clothing – Please dress for the weather and the work, including suitable footwear and gloves. Long trousers and long sleeves are recommended.

Tools – Strimmers / brush cutters and hedge trimmers are welcome. Hand tools such as shears, loppers, bow saws, pruning saws, rakes etc. are all very useful. If you propose to bring a chainsaw, then please ensure that you wear suitable safety equipment and bring evidence of an in-date qualification.

Safety – The site is steep, covered in thorn bushes, with a barbed wire fence and other hazards. A risk assessment has been carried out and there will be a safety briefing. You will be asked to pay attention to the safety briefing and to conduct yourself with due attention to your own safety and the safety of those around you.

Weather – Dress for the weather, which might be changeable.

Please remember to drop me a line if you are planning to attend.

Many thanks!

Antony Firth
Sutton Mandeville Heritage Trust