Review of 2008
It would be near impossible to write a balanced review of all the activities in St Teath, a village with a really thriving community spirit, but here's an attempt to sum up the highlights of 2008. Please contact us if you'd like your organisation's activities to be described here. The over arching story was of course the development of a 'credit crunch' of which few would have predicted the severity at the beginning of the year.
January was a quiet month, but St Teath Drama Group's pantomime 'Mother Goose' in February directed by Elaine Fell was a great success. One might be forgiven for thinking that the Jim Benton-Evans and Jem Thorold as Mother Goose and Jack respectively might have considered acting as a career as an alternative to The Ministry. Equally strong performances also came from many other members of the cast. Local charities and organisations have benefited as a result of the four performances and new equipment has been purchased to support future productions.
Well established, the increasingly popular village lunches continued to play a major part in funding for the Church Hall. Christmas lunches in particular were booked well in advance - the volunteers now have a well-deserved break during January. Church, and not necessarily spiritual, support continues to be provided by the churchyard grass-cutting team, although the poor summer meant that operations were often disrupted.
Fundraising for the amazing village lights in The Square continued through the year and the volunteers who braved cold weather to fix/dismantle them deserve our congratulations.
The ever informative and well read monthly Timepiece newsletter celebrated its 20th year of production. Reaction to a letter of criticism only served to prove that the editors and production team continue to enjoy wholehearted support. The newsletter has the advantage that it can reach places where this website cannot, especially with the older generation.
Poor summer weather failed to diminish support and entries for the Flower Festival and the Village Show in July and August respectively. It was amazing to see how the theme of 'history' could be interpreted in flowers and the lunches provided at the Flower Festival excelled. Decent Spring weather followed by rain enabled gardeners to get a good crop of early potatoes, but the lack of sunshine in July and August made it difficult to produce good soft fruit like tomatoes.
The weather (wet and foggy) in July failed to deter a good group of people from St Teath, Delabole and elsewhere enjoying a second successive Parish Walk, circumnavigating Helland Woods and Delabole.
The Carnival, organised by the Football Club, in July was blessed with fine weather for the first time in three years and attracted a very good turnout. The Delabole inspired biplane, which was only just able to squeeze through the streets of the village, won the best exhibit prize.
The Church Choir under musical director, Dave Phippen, had a busy year, including singing in Truro Cathedral to demonstrate the use of a computer to provide music in church. In July, they sang at the St Teath Flower Festival concert alongside the Wadebridge Male Voice Choir. They rovided support for Johnny Cowling in Truro Cathedral, singing before over 850 people and ended the year with an annual Christmas concert in St Teath Parish Church.
At a new and very informative venture, 'What's on in St Teath' in the Community Centre, representatives of village organisations set out and described their activities. Despite a limited attendance, some new members and volunteers were recruited.
Following the distribution and collection of a questionnaire, a consultion event was mounted by the St Teath Parish Council in the Church Hall to give parishioners a chance to air their views on issues affecting the village. The outcomes will be used present a Parish Plan, now in preparation. Having a Plan will ensure that when big, strategic decisions are made, for example by the unitary authority, the wishes of our Parish will be on record and will be considered by the planners and decision makers.
St Teath football team had a very good year, finishing second in the Duchy League 1 at the end of the 2007/8 season and are making good progress in the Premier League. They run no less than three other teams, the second, veterans and under 13s - an amazing feat for such a small village. There should be progress on a new stand in 2009 and hopefully less rain - the pitch has been waterlogged on several occasions recently.
The property market in St Teath does not appear to have suffered much as a result of the economic downturn because 15 houses changed hands at an average price of £253,000 including 5 at the Bruallen affordable housing development. This is well above the previous year's average of £222,000 when 16 properties were sold. However, sales dropped off in the autumn of 2008 and the first auction took place in the village for some time. Currently there are at least 11 houses for sale in or near the village, some of which have on the market for over a year.
The poor weather made the headlines in 2008. St Teath suffered overcast skies for much of July and August, and sunshine levels (but not temperatures) for the region in 2008 were the lowest on record. We've reported rainfall figures for 2008, but have no comparative figures for previous years. The nearest long term rainfall figures we can find are for RAF St Mawgan(50 years), where reporting ceased near the end of 2007. Making the assumption that St Mawgan rainfall is typical for North Cornwall, the chart shows that our winter rain tended to be less and summer rain more than the long term average. St Teath rainfall in 2008 was not a record. An interesting local total for the year was 1131 mm in St Teath and 1105 mm in Delabole. The 50 year average is 1007 mm.
Take up of broadband continued in the village, including the pub, but we are still hampered by quite slow speeds, typically 0.5 - 1 Mbits/sec, compared to 4 or more in many areas. For web browsing this is not a huge issue, but attempts to view video clips and TV online soon shows up broadband speed limitations. The best we can hope for is a fibre optic cable from the St Tudy exchange to a distribution box in the village, but this is unlikely to be any time soon.
The economic outlook for 2009 is bleak according to many commentators and is probably a factor in a drive towards more recycling (see November issue of Timepiece) and self sufficiency. It is encouraging that an initiative to provide allotments in North Road is underway.
The Ministry of fun? Photo: Adrian Jasper
December 1st: Lights switch on in The Square
Village Show - prize winning dahlia and tomatoes
Carnival St Teath, July 2008 - not raining! Photo: Adrian Jasper
Parish Walk - foggy weather at Trebarwith Road, Delabole
Parish Plan: just a few of the results from the survey
St Teath first team 2008 Photo: Doug Andrews
Seen in St Teath - signs of things to come?
Long term average bars blue, St Teath 2008 maroon
Broadband download speed still slow