(March 1989) Plague of beetles hits Village Hall!

Headline in The Sun! But we here in in sober, Financial Times Reading Sibford would, in more rational terms, report a rather super and friendly evening hosted by the Parochial Church Council of Holy Trinity for the newcomers to the villages over the last two years.

Invitations sent out by Dame Anne bore the rather confusing letters ‘R.S.V.P.’ which everyone on this side of the Channel knows stands for ‘Royal Society of Vicious Porcupines’, whereas dear Dame Anne, who did not leave school at fourteen, like the rest of us, and is already into Europe long before 1992, expected it to mean something rather different!!

It mattered not a jot for Colin Frith, who is something of a fortune teller, pressed his computer and up came the magic figure of 70. Tina Frith catered for that number and guess what? 68 sat down to a sumptious cold buffet. Potions of pink wine flowed. The Master of’ Ceremony, Timothy Wimbush, piloted the ensemble through several hands of ‘Beetle’ and confused everyone by insisting that its ‘five for a body and six for a head’ whereas everyone knows that, ever since Eric Payne was a lad, and that’s a long time ago, it’s been six for a body and five for a head!

It didn’t really matter, joy and laughter flowed unabated.

Later, the ‘glee club’, straight from the church choir stalls, led a happy throng, through a list of well known ditties.

It was just that sort of evening which makes one want to stop the installments on the TV set and return to home made country entertainment once more!

The party broke up at nine thirty by which time it was long past the bed time of many of the guests for it was a truly family affair.

“Good night Bill! Good night Lou, Good night May, Good night” and praise indeed for Colin and Tina Frith and their band of helpers.

What a pity its two years until the next ‘do’ and by that time R.S.V.P. will mean something strange in French!!

Pahh!! Who wants a Channel Tunnel?