Abingdon Poppy Appeal Honours Long-Serving Collectors

Alan Fisher, Sue Hargreaves, and Bob Strachan were awarded long service badges this week for their outstanding commitment to the Poppy Appeal.

Each of the trio has dedicated 15 years to the cause and has collectively raised thousands of pounds for the Poppy Appeal.

Alan Fisher, single-handedly covering Abingdon’s house-to-house collections, walks 10 miles over the two-week collection period. He collected £94.21 in his first year and £1,000 this year.

Sue Hargreaves goes above and beyond collection duties. She meticulously cleans all the poppy tins, distributes them throughout Abingdon, collects them after the campaign, and counts the donations.

An 84-year-old veteran, Bob Strachan is a familiar sight in Abingdon’s town centre with his collection tin. Last year alone, Bob raised a remarkable £1,800, and he has set an ambitious target of £2,000 for this year.

Bob Griffiths also received recognition for his invaluable contribution. Bob is responsible for organizing the wreaths for Abingdon.

‘These collectors never fail to amaze me with their dedication,’ said Clare Oldfield, Abingdon Poppy Appeal organiser. ‘Their commitment is truly humbling and inspiring. I would also like to acknowledge the incredible generosity of Abingdon residents, whose contributions over the past eight years have totalled more than a third of a million pounds.’

Interested in becoming a poppy collector? Contact Abingdon Poppy Appeal at abingdon.poppy@gmail.com to learn more and join this dedicated team.

Abingdon Vale Cricket Club Opens Gordon Rhodes Bar

Members and friends gathered for the opening of Abingdon Vale Cricket Club’s new bar this evening. This revamp is a direct result of the club’s recently secured 75-year lease, providing the stability needed to invest in its future. The new bar, along with the redecoration of a comfortable lounge area and a pizza oven and servery, offers a welcoming environment for members, supporters, and visitors alike.

Cricket is thriving at Abingdon Vale. The club has a junior program with over 120 players aged 5-17. The senior teams have two pitches where they can play two home matches each Saturday.

Mark Edwards, who managed the project, said, ‘Not only will it enhance the cricket experience, but it will also create a fantastic venue for children’s parties and other events.’

The new Gordon Rhodes Bar, named in honour of the late club president, chairman, trustee, and player, was officially opened by Abingdon’s Deputy Mayor, Councillor Gabby Barody – with the help of Chairman Rob Hood who delivered a tribute to Gordon, highlighting his dedication to the club. He also acknowledged Abingdon and Witney College’s valuable contribution in designing and constructing the bar.

80th Year Triumph: Abingdon Drama Club Shines in Stoppard Masterpiece

The Abingdon Drama Club are putting on a captivating and enjoyable production of Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead, a fitting tribute to the drama club in its 80th year. Tom Stoppard’s play, a tragicomedy, follows the story of two minor characters from Hamlet, Rosencrantz and Guildenstern. They find themselves in a world of confusion as the events of Shakespeare’s play sweep by them, and they try to understand their part.

The director, Terry Atkinson, loves the play’s great but challenging script. Kieran Madden and Chris Bedford bring Rosencrantz and Guildenstern to life, not just by remembering so many lines but in how the sharp-witted Guildenstern is complemented by the confused and panicky Rosencrantz. Michael Ward as the Player and his acting group, The Tragedians, are also impressive.

The show has been running since Wednesday, April 17th, and there is a matinee and evening performance on Saturday, April 20th, at the Unicorn Theatre in Abingdon. Tickets are £12 or £10 for concessions. See: https://www.abingdon-drama-club.com/.

MG 100 – Evolution of an Icon: A Report

The Abingdon County Hall Museum is hosting an exhibition titled “MG 100 – Evolution of an Icon,” commemorating the 100th anniversary of the MG brand. This exhibition takes visitors through MG’s history, highlighting the iconic models, record-breaking achievements, and influential figures who shaped the brand.

The exhibition begins in the sessions hall as a series of information boards, each board exploring one aspect of MG’s story. The exhibition continues upstairs in the attic area. You can learn about:

  • MG Early Days: Morris Motors and MG. MG Finds Identity. Rise of the MG Midget.
  • Lord Nuffield: The visionary owner and Managing Director of Morris Motors who played a pivotal role in MG’s development.
  • Cecil Kimber: The Managing Director who is credited with shaping MG’s unique identity.
  • MG Car Club: John Thornley founded the MG Car Club in 1930, fostering a passionate community of enthusiasts.
  • The War Years: The repurposing of the factory for wartime production of tanks.

The exhibition highlights MG’s post-war achievements with sections on:

  • The MGA: An export success, particularly popular in the USA.
  • Syd Enever: MG’s chief engineer, who played a key role in the MGA and MGB.
  • The MGB: Another iconic model that achieved great export success, especially in the American market.
  • The New Midget: A successful smaller sports car featuring a smaller engine.
  • EX Numbers: A section dedicated to ‘EX’ numbered prototypes and parts, not all of which reached production, showcasing MG’s spirit of innovation.
  • MG’s racing heritage: Racing drivers, George Eyston and Goldie Gardner
  • The End of MG Abingdon: The decision by BL to prioritize a Triumph model over the MGB, and other factors that led to closure of MG production in Abingdon.
  • MG After Abingdon: The brand’s continuation with production shifting to other locations including China.

Beyond the information boards, the exhibition offers :

  • Films: A film featuring Sterling Moss and an MG record-breaking car, and a documentary showing the process of lifting the last MGB into the museum.
  • Vehicles on Display: A showcase of MG car models in a display case allows visitors to see dozens of models together.
  • Additional Exhibits: The exhibition features various artifacts including a section of the assembly track, and design drawings by Peter Neal. He is now the club archivist who collaborated with the museum staff in making the exhibition.

For more details about the exhibition, visit the Abingdon Museum website: https://www.abingdon.gov.uk/event/exhibition-mg-100-evolution-of-an-icon. Admission FREE.

The museum is financed and overseen by Abingdon Town Council.