WEEKLY Column of Fairford and Lechlade news by Chris Roberts MBE. 

1. Act of kindness after 40-year-old woman dies 

Gloucestershire-based housing association, Bromford believes in forming good relationships with their residents, so when Bromford heard about the death of a young lady from Kempsford that had passed away too soon, they wanted to create a memorial in her memory.

Sarah Louise Emberson, who lived in Kempsford, was just 40 years old when she passed away in July 2021 as a result of cancer and multiple surgeries.

With support from builders, E G Carter & Co Ltd, Bromford has now created a lovely area on the new social rent housing development, which is in a part of Kempsford where Sarah – a much-loved resident of the Cotswold village – spent many happy hours.

Last week, Sarah’s parents, Peter and Tracy Major; two sisters, Nicola and Stacey; son, Callam and husband, James were all there to have their first sight of the commemorative plaque and the beautiful rose bush – Sarah’s favourite flower – planted alongside.

Originally from Bibury, Sarah was the eldest of the three sisters and had a carefree childhood playing on the family farm. Youngest sister, Stacey, said: “Sarah and I always had an amazing bond, which I miss very much. Sarah had a huge heart and was loved by so many people. Our family is hugely grateful to Bromford for creating this commemorative area for Sarah.”

James Trotter, Senior Regeneration Co-Ordinator for Bromford said: “At Bromford, we strive to support our communities to thrive. Creating this commemorative space in memory of Sarah Louise Emberson is a heartfelt gesture to honour a wonderful lady.

"We hope this tribute serves as a place of reflection and remembrance for Sarah’s family and all who knew her.”

2. Sixteen year old eco-warrior travels to prom on vintage fire engine 

Fairford’s eco-warrior and litter picker, Heather Kent (16) was the envy of her school friends when she travelled to her school prom last week on a vintage fire engine.

The 1943 Austin K4 Turntable Ladder (with a 61-foot ladder) has been owned by the Wannel family for over 50 years and Brad Wannel was only too pleased to drive Heather and her friend, Amy Garner (16) to the school prom being held at Blunsdon House Hotel. Even Fairford’s Finest fire engine and fire fighters came out to salute Heather and Amy.

It was Steve Evans, organiser of the Fairford Steam Show, that made Heather’s dream come true. He said: “Heather has been a huge part of the Fairford community, and this is one way the wider community can thank her for what she has done.”

Heather has been involved in the Fairford community ever since she was very young. From being a Fairford Festival Flower Girl, a Rainbow, a Brownie, going to both Fairford pre-school and Primary School, being an award-winning litter picker and a school eco-warrior and latterly attending Farmor’s School. Heather’s mum, Julie said: “This prom will mark the end of an era for Heather as she’s now going forward to a new adventure at the Stagedoor Learning in Cheltenham to study Performing Arts.”

The vintage fire engine will be appearing at the Fairford Steam Show over the weekend of August 17 and 18.

3. Staff thank people for attending drop-in open day 

The staff at JPA Financial Planning would like to thank everyone that came along to their drop-in Open Day last week. Experienced financial adviser, Chris Homer and his team were thrilled by the interest shown by local people in their new business.

If you were not able to attend, please either drop in to 27a London Street, Fairford GL7 4 AQ (just a couple of doors away from Budgens) and make an appointment or call 01285 440310 or visit https://www.jpafinancialplanning.co.uk.

The final total raised from Maureen Partington’s sponsored walk is £375. Gift Aid adds over £90 to this. Maureen would like to thank all her supporters for their generosity.

4. Fairford Church Flower team to be represented at festival 

On Saturday July 6, Beth Bruce-Gardner and Alison Godsal will be representing Fairford Church Flower Team at the Flower Festival in Cirencester Church.

The Flower Festival, which will be ‘Glorifying God sustainably with flowers’, has 13 parishes across two Deaneries taking part.

Doors to St John the Baptist Church, Cirencester GL7 2NX will open at 10am until 4pm. The Church will also be open for viewing until 4pm on Tuesday July 9. Entry is free, but donations are welcome.

5. Free evening of activities for young people in area 

Fairford Skate is a free evening of activities for young people aged 11-17 years on Thursday July 11 from 5pm-8pm in the Walnut Tree Field. Learn to skate with local instructors.

Football, cricket and more. Free pizza (thanks to Fairford Safer Streets). Meet Zee and Ang – your local PCSOs and youth-workers from The Door.

6. Club in Lechlade and district open to all males 

The Probus Club of Lechlade and District is open to all males. Meeting in Lechlade Memorial Hall on the first and third Fridays of every month (except public holidays) at 10am for 10.30am.

Talks last up to an hour and the meeting is followed by a few drinks at the bar run by our own members. The next meeting is on Friday July 5 and the talk is ‘Ripping Yarns and Wizard Wheezes (The Golden Age of British Comics’ with Dr John Reid.

7. Fresh Fashion Show taking place on Sunday 

FRESH AIR 2024 HOSTS FRESH FASHION ON IT’S LAST EVENING The Fresh Fashion Show is on Sunday July 7 – the last evening of the Fresh Air Sculpture Exhibition – with gates open from 6pm-9pm at Quenington Old Rectory, GL7 5BN.

All sculptures from the three-week long biennial exhibition will still be on display to view but without the crowds. In the marquee, behold the beautiful shoes by Caroline Groves and wonder at the work of the embroiderers of the King’s Foundation, who have used the Old Rectory gardens as their inspiration.

The church of St Swithin’s will host the Fashion Show of innovative designs by gifted designers/makers, who spotlight the importance of using sustainable materials. Most clothes and accessories are for sale and there’ll also be a chance to meet the designers/makers.

Limited tickets are available from www.freshairsculpture.com at £45. Some student tickets are also available. The price includes entry to the Fresh Air Sculptures, a glass of fizz and canapés (thanks to Chamberlain Wines and Upton Smokery), and a pay bar by Joe Limbrick.

Any profits will be split between a bursary for textile research, St Swithin’s Church and Dorothy House Hospice.

Thanks to headline sponsor, Lakes by yoo, all the models and everyone giving their time for free.