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It looked to be a really terrible choice of day for the party with England in the World Cup Quarter Finals. But this overlooked the enterprising person who set up a TV screen in front of the BBQ. The barbecue chefs were again Ken Hickling and Mark Wakeling. Josephine Wakeling supplied the vegetarian meals and Richard Ross helped with the cooking. Chris Bull ran the children’s games and Liz Cox continued her career of face painting.

Richard Ross brought along a display about the Swaythling Remount Depot. By a remarkable coincidence, Richard wrote an undergraduate thesis on the British Remount Service, little knowing that he would come to live in Swaythling.

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by Sandie Dixon, 34 Ethelburt Avenue

We first found horseshoes in our garden when digging the foundations for the kitchen extension in 1980. We didn’t know about the Remount Depot back then, so we just kept them, hoping they might bring us good luck. Over the years, mainly when digging the vegetable plot, I have found a lot of other stuff, which I now know has (probably) come from the Depot.

The finds include lots of broken glass bottles and jars, china and pottery and also metal items: horse and possibly mule shoes or boot heels, tools, nails, a flat iron, a lump of once molten metal fused with ash and an enamel potty. Of course, I can’t be certain that these items relate to the Depot but the potty was under a dead apple tree (believed to be one of the original ones planted by Herbert Collins when the house was built) so we can be fairly sure that it dates from the time of the Depot. Also, one of the pottery jar bases has W.Adams &Co 1916 written on it – so that fits. Our garden is where the southernmost boundary of the camp was, just beyond where the line of huts stood.

I know that other residents have found horseshoes and horse hair in gardens nearby, but quite why there is so much stuff in our garden intrigues me. Now that the story of our War Horses and their servicemen has become better known, I think of what went on in my garden all those years ago, each time I make a new find.

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Twelve residents opened their gardens on our Open Gardens Day, Sunday 3rd June. A cheque for £200.50 has been sent to Tools for Self Reliance. Visitors were able to stop for Pimm’s in Field Close and see beehives, learn a little of beekeeping and perhaps gain a desire to take up this fascinating hobby. Peggy Gow was surprised at the number of people who came to visit her garden. She organised a game for the children to find her hidden garden ornaments of frogs, fishes, turtles, beavers, rabbits etc. At the end of the route, tea and cake was offered by Angela Cotton in Summerfield Gardens.

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by Ray George

In the last Newsletter, we said that the land would first be registered by Woodhill Properties Ltd’s solicitor before transfer to the Company. Progress has been so incredibly slow that we can only conclude it is at the bottom of their to-do list. We still await the outcome of the official search of the Land Registry Index Map.

Recently, the directors decided they needed to broaden the expertise at the top of the Company, so they short-listed two candidates and after interviewing them both, appointed John Green. Many of you will know John from the Swaythling Lawn Tennis Club, and we welcome his experience as a former director of an education trust.

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by Ray George

Attention to even a small detail can enhance the appearance of a group of properties.

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The Association’s AGM has been provisionally scheduled for Tuesday 30th October at St George’s School. Residents will be sent notices confirming the meeting about two weeks in advance. The meeting may decide to appoint a director of Herbert Collins Estates Limited. So that it can be included in the notice of the meeting, nominations must be emailed to HCERA by Monday 1st October. Nominations must include the name of a proposer and a seconder and a statement that the nominee is willing to serve, if elected. Please ensure that you receive an acknowledgment of your email.

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by Peter Martin

Grateful thanks to the people from all over HCERA who came to the Poetry and Wine Evening on 16th May, or made individual contributions to the envelope appeal. We raised altogether £388 for Christian Aid. The recipients thank you very much, and so do I.

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You were probably made aware that the General Data Protection Regulation was coming into force on 25th May, because you were constantly assailed by the threat that you would never hear from an organization again, unless you signed up. Such bliss! But strangely, some junk mail has kept coming!

Like other organisations, HCERA is subject to this new regulation which has replaced the Data Protection Act 1998. HCERA’s privacy notice will be found at

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