TABLE SALE SUCCESS -- The table sale held in Skenfrith Parish Hall, to raise funds for St Michael's Hospice in Hereford, was a great success. Several people had tables, some for one day but most for two days and a variety of goods were on sale. Plants, books, bric-a-brac, pictures made from natural materials, cakes, cards cushions and candles were all there and attracted much interest. Organisers Mary Thomas and Kath Jasper had plenty on willing helpers in charge of the hospice stall, the raffle, the tombola stall, the refreshments and the 'Guess the name of the noisy duck'. Trade was steady rather than brisk over the two days but everyone seemed to enjoy themselves. All the stall holders said they would like to come again. When all the takings were totted up there was a profit of £420 for St Michael's Hospice. It was well worth the effort. In addition to this money, Mary Thomas had taken stalls at the last two table sales in Skenfrith, earlier in the year. At these sales she had raised more than £200 so the total amount that Mary will be sending to the hospice is £690. This is an amazing amount of money raised in a small community like Skenfrith. Thank you from the organisers to all the stall holders, to all the helpers and especially to all who came and supported the event.

OPENING OF NEW CONSERVATORY -- More storage space is needed in Skenfrith Parish Hall so the committee decide to build on a conservatory at the back of the hall to accommodate some of the Aikido mats and some of the tables and chairs. One committee member spotted an advertisement in the Hereford Times for a second hand conservatory and that was the beginning of the project. Thanks to a number of local people who gave their time to help, and especially to Ted jasper, the conservatory is now up and ready. The floor remains to be tiled and a grant has been applied to help with this. The committee has decided to have a BBQ party to celebrate and all the people who helped with the conservatory and also all the people who helped on Fun Day are invited. The date is Saturday, September 27, and the time from 6.30pm as the nights are drawing in. If you are one of the helpers, please come along and join in the celebrations. There will be burgers and hot dogs and salads and a bottle or two of wine.

COFFEE MORNING -- A coffee morning was held at the home of Pat and Austin Matthews, near Skenfrith. The weather was glorious so the raffle table and the bring-and-buy stall were outside. The coffee morning was held to raise funds for the Busoga Trust, a UK-based charity with which Frances David, of Skenfrith, is involved. It was only a short time ago that the last money needed to reach the £2,000 target for a well in a Ugandan village was raised. Now Skenfrith, Cross Ash and Grosmont are well on their way towards raising the money needed for a second well. Frances David had arranged a display of photographs of some of the wells built by the Busoga Trust. These wells make a huge difference to the lives and health of the people who live in the villages. Pat and Austin's lovely garden was open for guests to wander around; they could also pick a bag of apples or pears from the orchard for 50p a bag and take cuttings from plants for a donation. At the end of the morning, more than £230 had been raised. This means that Frances now has £969 towards another well from this area. Almost halfway there!

PLOUGHING MATCH -- This year the annual Llangattock-Vibon-Avel ploughing match takes place on Sunday, at Parc Grace Dieu Farm, The Hendre, Monmouth. On Saturday, there is to be a vintage tractor road run. This will start at Parc Grace Dieu and 'trundle slowly through the countryside' to use chairman Steve Bevan's words. They will assemble on top of the Graig Hill for lunch and return to Parc Grace Dieu via Skenfrith for an evening of entertainment. Eighty or more tractors are expected to take part so it should be quite an impressive sight. On the Sunday there will be the ploughing match and in the marquee all the horticulture and domestic classes will be on display. There will be sheep classes this year for the first time since foot and mouth, also some cattle judging. It should be an interesting and enjoyable two days. There is no entry charge for the vintage tractor ramble but entrants are asked to sell £10 worth of raffle tickets. The money raised in this way will be divided between the Noah's Ark Appeal and the St John's Ambulance. Each participant will receive a commemorative slate coaster.