Enstone Ensign

Enstone Ensign

Read below or click here for the latest Ensign-Dec-20

The Enstone Ensign is a newsletter for the Parish of Enstone and is delivered monthly for free to 600 households.

It is published at the end of each month and news copy should be sent to Andrea Bates as soon as it is ready or before the last week of the month. Address is Hillside (blue door opposite Artyard Cafe) or ring 677 231 for shorter items. You can also email Andrea at info@andreabates.co.uk.

Dear friends


Number 431 December 2020 Newsletter for Enstone Parish


Christmas in Enstone” Christmas will be different but still just as special. Instead of our normal Carol and Crib services, we will be recording online services which can be watched online. We also hope to have a socially distanced service at 10.00 am in St. Kenelm’s Church on Christmas Day but booking for this will be essential. Please look out for details on the village noticeboards and the Benefice website: www.thechasebenefice.org.uk 

ST. TERESA’S CATHOLIC CHURCH, FISHERS LANE, CHARLBURY There will be no mass in Enstone in December. Midnight Mass 8 pm Christmas Eve and Christmas morning 9.15 at St. Teresa’s. Both by booking only. Email charlburymass@gmail.com, giving the number of people in your party. The Parish Priest is Fr Tony Joyce, at Holy Trinity Rectory, London Rd, Chipping Norton OX7 5AX. holytrinityrcchippy@gmail.com 01608 642703 In these difficult times let us try to keep in our minds and hearts the words of Jesus: “In this world you will have trouble, but take heart, for I have overcome the world.” 

All items for the January Ensign in by 28th December (or sooner, if you have it ready) please, to Hillside (blue door opposite Artyard Cafe) or ring 677231 for shorter items. You can also email me at info@andreabates.co.uk 


Dear Friends For many people, Christmas and Church are inextricably linked. From candlelit carol services to delightful nativity plays to fun-filled Christingle services, this is often the one point in the year when people reconnect with the traditions of faith. So what does Christmas mean in a year when most of what we normally do has been suspended or scaled back in the interests of public health and saving lives? Do we just give it a miss, declare Christmas 2020 ‘cancelled’, and make a new year’s resolution to be back in 2021? 

Although I can’t tell you exactly what Christmas will look like, it will undoubtedly be different to other Christmases we have experienced. But Christmas has not been banned as it was during the English Protectorate of 1653-59. Nor do we need to celebrate Christmas secretly as Christians must do in parts of the world where Christianity is prohibited. We are instead being asked to celebrate it differently and creatively.

Christmas is usually a time spent with family and friends, when there are parties and socialising, when carols are sung, of searching out perfect presents in crowded shops. But that is not the heart of Christmas. The heart of Christmas is the yearly remembrance of the hopeful story, that God, in Jesus Christ, became a human being. Although we usually remember it together, we could just as easily remember it alone, because the whole point is that we are no longer alone because, in Jesus Christ, God becomes Emmanuel – God with us.

Sometimes I find the ways we traditionally celebrate Christmas to be out of sync with what it is that we are seeking to remember. Celebrating a child born in poverty by eating and drinking to excess and spending money we can’t afford on gifts that people don’t need seems a little strange. This year, we have an opportunity, if we want to, to dial it down a little. To focus on the story which, whether you believe it to be true or understand it as a sacred myth, urges us to be the best people we can be. People who care for others, who see the value in those that society overlooks. People who recognise that connecting with something bigger than ourselves is important. People who take the most difficult of circumstances and make something truly beautiful. Resilient people who rely on God.

We might not be able to hold the usual Christmas services this year, but there is a certain symmetry with that first Christmas. Mary and Joseph faced shut doors in their search for a safe place to give birth to Jesus, yet he was born anyway. And make no mistake about it, despite everything Christmas will happen anyway – for it cannot be cancelled! With my prayers for a happy Christmas and peaceful New Year.

Mark Abrey 


Soho Farmhouse, Great Tew, 20/02469/FUL – Proposed alterations to and erection of facilities to include security cabin, warehouse canopy, green rooms, warehouse stores and office, bin storage, wood and hay stores plus other minor changes in warehouse and staff car parking areas. No objection

Dormers, Coxs Lane, Enstone, 20/02782/HHD – Two storey extension and conversion of garage to create extra living space. Works to include the relocation of oil tank. No objection

The Old Coal Yard, Gagingwell, 20/02840/FUL – Construction of replacement building to provide flexible Offices (B1 use) on site of original Dutch Barn, together with associated works – concerns raised regarding the overdevelopment of the site, traffic concerns and insufficient car parking spaces. Decisions Received:-

Westbury Farm, Little Tew Road, Church Enstone, 20/02000/FUL – Erection of agricultural building – withdrawn

Methodist Chapel, Chapel Lane, Enstone, 20/02070/FUL – Conversion of Methodist Chapel to create two residential buildings – withdrawn 


The Parish Council is extremely grateful for the responses received following the survey and questionnaire. Over 100 responses have been received. These will be discussed at a meeting in early January. The Parish Council thanks Cllr. Carole Glendinning and Mrs Rachel Hunt for their hard work in producing and collating this important information. 

NEW PARISH WEBSITE ….. NOW UP AND RUNNING ….. www.enstoneparish.org

The new website is now “live”. Enstone Parish Council thanks Mrs Rachel Hunt for all her work involved with this. Please take a look – it is also combined with news regarding the Parish Hall and local organisations. 

JOINING THE PARISH COUNCIL’S VIRTUAL MEETINGS:- Although the Parish Council is now holding meetings “virtually”, residents can participate in these. The ID number and password to join the meeting will be displayed on the agenda, which will be placed on the noticeboards and website. A link on the website also details planning applications. Dates of next meetings:-

• Thursday 17th December 7.15 pm

• Thursday 14th January 7.15 pm

• Thursday 28th January 7.15 pm 

Mrs Beth Sinclair, Enstone Parish Clerk, Briery Cottage, 9 Alexandra Square, Chipping Nor ton, OX7 5HL.

t: 01608 641051:   e: – enstoneparishclerk@gmail.com

Website address for the Parish: enstoneparish.org

Facebook Page = Enstone Parish 


We have had a busy start to the new half term but before we broke up, we had lots of fun celebrating Halloween by decorating preschool with different spooky things like ghosts, bats and spider webs! We played some spooky music and enjoyed having a monster dance! We also had some pumpkins for the children to play with and explore and then we carved them on the last day of term. When we returned on the 2nd Nov, we spent some time talking about fireworks and fire safety while making some fantastic firework picture. We have also been busy making poppy pictures with our fingerprints to celebrate remembrance day and enjoyed making some very colourful Pudsey Bear pictures for Children in Need. A big thank you to staff and committee members for helping with the ‘Autumn clear-up’ outside which is now looking a lot fresher and inviting! We have another super busy term ahead with lots of Christmas crafts such as Calendars, Reindeer food and Christmas tree fir cones! Plus, we are expecting a visit from 5 cheeky elves next month who will be leaving clues for the children to try and guess where they are hiding! SANTA and his change bucket!) will be coming to Enstone on Sunday 20th December at 4.30pm, do join us outside your front door to see him drive past in his tractor! The route will be announced nearer the time on our Facebook pages. We also have a just giving page https://www.justgiving.com/campaign/EnstonePreSchool all donations gratefully received. Enstone Pre-school is looking for an experienced Pre-School Assistant. We require applicants to hold at least a level 2 childcare qualification and they should also have a sound knowledge of child development and the Early Years Foundation Stage. Ideally this would be a part time role approx 2-4 days a week 13-26 hours, however this is open to negotiation. We also have various roles available within our vital Preschool committee including Chair and Treasurer. If you are interested in any of these positions please contact Laura at enstonepreschoolchair@gmail.com Finally, If you have a child aged 2+ and are interested in joining us, then please email us at enstonepreschool@gmail.com or call us on 01608 677192.


We have had another busy month at Enstone Primary School. Everyone is working hard and continuing to adapt to life in our “bubbles”. Whoever would have thought that builders’ fencing in classrooms, strips of tape across carpets and learning to dance back several steps every time someone comes towards you would come to feel so normal?! Our mantra at the moment is, “Let’s focus on what we can do, not on what we can’t do” and with that in mind we are trying to find creative ways to enjoy some pre-Christmas celebrations as we head towards the end of the autumn term. We may not be able to go to Chipping Norton Theatre to see the pantomime this year, but we can watch an online pantomime in school. We may not be able to have our whole school Christmas lunch, but we can have some little class parties and pull our crackers. The tree will still go up, and we will still enjoy Christmas music, stories and fun as we prepare to celebrate the season slightly differently this year in every household. Every day brings a new challenge, but we are encouraging our children to be grateful for what we have here in our school community and to practise a little mindfulness – living in and enjoying each precious moment with family and friends.

Sarah Mann, Headteacher 


From Commander Martin Juckes Royal Navy – Enstone Poppy Appeal The Enstone Royal British Legion Poppy Appeal for 2020 was severely limited due to COVID 19 restrictions, with door to door collections forbidden due to safety concerns for collectors and donators alike. Therefore the appeal was centred around static collection boxes placed in various key venues around the village; I know this was a disappointment to the many individual collectors who normally raise funds for the Legion, but the RBL rules around handling money and carrying out door to door visits simply didn’t allow these type of collections to happen. Despite this, the Village raised an impressive £679 in total and my thanks go to all who contributed.

This has been a very difficult year for the RBL and the Charity sector as a whole, hopefully next year we can return to the usual collection protocols and make up for the reduced total this year. So once again, many thanks for your contributions and I look forward to your support next year.” 


We returned to Guides in September and made the most of face to face meetings outside and socially distanced for the half term. The evenings began to draw in, and although we started Guides earlier to compensate, we still spent much of the evening in the dark. However, we were able to carry on with the Guide programme and complete activities which included making shadow puppets, cooking quesadillas on camping stoves, a night hike around Heythrop and Church Enstone, and an evening of Halloween themed games and activities.

Just as we were set to start face to face meetings inside, we entered lockdown 2, so we are back to Zoom meetings. We took part in Parliament Week, built ‘beasts’ out of rubbish for recycling and have continued with our Day of the Dead Challenge by making skull shaped pizzas decorated in the style of Día De Los Muertos.

This week we are making Christmas decorations using folded up strips of magazines. It is amazing what you make with recycled paper and books! We do not know when we can resume face to face Guides, so we may well be completing the term’s programme and having our Christmas party and secret Santa via Zoom.

We would like to thank the community for their support during our fundraising efforts over previous Christmases. We have decided not to fundraise this Christmas as we realise that people’s circumstances may be difficult owing to the pandemic we find ourselves in and it will not be easy to maintain appropriate social distancing.

Enstone Guides would like to wish you all well for the forthcoming festive season, and hope that you and your families stay safe.

We welcome any girls aged 10 to 14 years old, if you would like to join us please express your interest at https://www.girlguiding.org.uk/information-for-parents/ register-your-daughter or contact Kathy Slark 07879630655, EnstoneGuides@outlook.com.


Two Jolly Cooks presents the Enstone Food Market. To be held in the car park of the Enstone Sports and Social Club, Cox’s Lane, Enstone OX7 4LF on Sunday 20th December.

It will be open from 10 – 1.15pm, with parking. It is a flat surface and toilets are available.

Donations in aid of Oxfordshire Mind, a Mental Health charity. Stalls will include Two Jolly Cooks /The Indian Orchard/ Flamingo Cards / LNWP Art / Mira Preserves/ Ray of Soap / The Hippy Hare Co / Its A Chocolate Thing/ The Curiosities Company/ Tess’ Brilliant Cakes / Team Tea / Swedish Sandwich Cakes / North Aston Organics’ vegetables / Chillis 2 U and hopefully more..

Hope to see you there. Please be responsible in social distancing. 


New members welcome Barclays Premier League Live on Sky ,plus other sports too.

TELEPHONE NUMBER: 01608 677823 

ALL SUBJECT TO CHANGE TO GOVERNMENT GUIDELINES Open Friday 7-10pm, Saturday 2-7pm, Sunday 12-3pm Sign in and hand sanitise.

No events planned. No club meetings until further notice as is the same with bingo and whist.

Membership is due for 2020/21 – Adults £10, OAP and 13-17yrs £5, 12 and under free Thank you all for your support and be safe. 


December 17 – Parish Council Meeting 7.15pm via Zoom

December 20 – Enstone Food Market Sports and Social Club 10am-1.15pm 20 Santa drive past in his tractor 4.30pm