New Barber + Old News

New Barber
A new barber is to open at the corner of Lombard Street and West St Helen Street.
New Barber
Newspapers from April 1st 2020 are still in the window. I thought nobody did April fools this year, but there is a Daily Mail picture of Prince Harry with a trolley load of toilet paper. Old news included:

Tough measures to clamp down on hoarders

Corona stops play: Just when you thought it couldn’t get worse, Wimbledon’s off… 

No mass, family lunch or egg hunts… How the coronavirus finished off Easter celebrations for the first time in 2,000 years

Like so many medics I’m stuck at home with just a cough. This is madness: Dr MAX PEMBERTON blasts Government over lack of coronavirus testing for NHS workers.

Acacia UK reopens charity shop in Abingdon

Acacia UK
The Acacia UK charity shop in Bath Street reopened today. The shop has been closed after fire damage in September 2017 and subsequent delays in its restoration. The reopening was further delayed because of the Coronavirus lockdown.
Acacia UK
This is the third Charity Shop to open in Abingdon since the lockdown. A perspex screen has been installed to shield volunteers serving customers. A notice on the doors asks for a maximum of eight customers at any one time.

There are three Acacia shops, the other two are in Faringdon and Grove. They raise money to support children of differing mental and physical abilities in Kenya and Uganda to enjoy a high quality education. The charity has worked with children in Africa since 1995 – the original name being Action for People in Conflict.

Neighbourhood – Theme Day at City Daily Photo

These houses stood in West St Helen Street in the town of Abingdon-on-Thames until the late 1970s. This picture was sent to me by Steve and says ‘my old house is where your house is now’.
The new houses, including ours, were built around 1980.

West St Helen Street is one of the two roads leading north from South Abingdon, and can be busy. It is in the centre of town near all the shops. During the last three months of the Coronavirus lockdown it has been quieter and more neighbourly. We saw several neighbours, out at the same time – standing on doorsteps, when people applauded hospital workers and other key workers on Thursdays at 8pm.

This is my entry for the Theme Day at City Daily Photo. Visit neighbourhoods around the world at Theme Day at City Daily Photo.

Thank you for the thought for today

Thought for Today
Thankyou to the Abingdon-on-Thames Parish team who have recorded a Thought for Today from Monday to Friday since the 13th April. The last recording was for June 30th with Revd Paul Smith on becoming friends of time. The recordings are all still available at
Thought for Today
They have ended for now. Normal life is resuming. That may be a new normal.

The churches of St Helen’s and St Nicolas have been open for personal prayer.
St Helen’s:
Wednesday 11 am – 1pm
Saturday 11 am – 1pm
St Nicolas (in the Market Square):
Monday 10 am – 1pm

Churches are allowed to open from July 4th if they have measures to stop Covid-19 transmission. That will include distancing, hygiene, and information.

Second Abingdon Charity Shop re-opens

Shop fronts
Cancer Research Uk re-opened today in Abingdon. They are the second charity shop in Abingdon to re-open.

They have put in place safety measures to stop the transmission of the virus and keep people safe. Only 4 customers will be allowed in the shop at any time and shop displays allow 2 meter social distancing.
Shop fronts
Another shop that has a new look is the ex-Ladbrokes. It will open as Abingdon Nail Spa. The nail bar that was in West St Helen Street are moving and upgrading.

The name Abingdon does carry a certain significance. It is also used by Abingdon Health, in York, who are working on a Covid-19 antibody test.

Trees Growing Back on their own

Radley Lakes
The weather today was changeable.  We went for a walk out to Radley Lakes and took the anti-clockwise route. The first view of Thrupp Lake, during a shower, looked a bit like the Amazon.
Radley Lakes
Back in 2007, I watched the battle of Radley Lakes. It was between campaigners, and security guards with face masks. A lot of trees were cut down in preparation for filling the lake with ash from Didcot Power Station.

The campaigners won and that never happened. Trees are growing back and creating new mini islands.
Radley Lakes
Another Radley Lake, that did get filled with ash, is full of trees that are now ten to fifteen years old.

In another fifty years the trees could take over Thrupp Lake as well.

Trinity Conduit Centre and Garden

Conduit Centre
Before and during the lockdown there has been work on improvements to the Conduit Centre next to Trinity Church. The hall is used by many community groups, and the intention is to make it more accessible.

Work did stop at times when it was difficult to get materials, but the Conduit entrance hall and toilets are now almost complete.
Conduit Centre
The gardens at Trinity are looked after by volunteers gardeners.