Well It's that time of year when the summer holidays are just a distant memory and the days are getting shorter and you may find there's not much to look forward to. Wrong! We have Christmas to look forward to. It is a time to rejoice in the birth of Jesus Christ and it is also a time for sharing, whether it's with our families or with each other. 
The OCC Shoebox Appeal is aimed at sharing: sharing God's love with children from Eastern Europe. Many are orphans and quite a few live on the streets because their parents can not afford to look after them. Some are suffering ill health and through the poor economy of the countries they can not get the treatment they need. What the Shoebox appeal tries to do, is show that we do care for them in their suffering. This is done at Christmas by giving shoeboxes filled with small toys, sweets, games, pens, paper, coloured pencils and paints etc. to these unfortunate youngsters. 
This Shoebox Appeal this year should very much up and running by the time you read this. Many local schools, organisations and individuals are taking part, busily getting their shoeboxes ready. Last year helpers checked and processed 2600 shoe boxes in my garage, which was quite remarkable.
But this year we have a Warehouse, which has been donated to us for 6weeks. If you have done any shoeboxes, drop them off at the Co-op in Caddington or take them to the warehouse, Unit 2 Lawrence Way, off Brewers Hill Road, Dunstable (near the fire Station) from November 5th, every Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday until 30th November. This year many more schools and churches have been contacted in the LU and MK post code area, which means we have no idea how many shoeboxes will arrive at the warehouse. So if you feel you would like to help at the warehouse or fill a shoebox please call me, 01582 482681. 
In addition our Knitting Club will be meeting on Tuesday November 11th at 7.30pm at 36, Summer Street Slip End. So if you are a knitter and wish to run up some much needed warm items for these children, go along or give me a call.
Teresa Willson
^ ^ ^ ^ ^


Please leave your used foil & cans at
67 Five Oaks, Caddington,
or call 480107 to arrange collection 


You can help the Christian charity Samaritan's Purse by giving your time to help us get gift-filled shoe boxes to children in Eastern Europe in Russia. From November until January Operation Christmas Child needs volunteer drivers (normal licence not HGV), checkers, packers and loaders to work in our warehouses across the UK.
If you are housebound, you may be able to help by knitting hats, scarves and gloves to help top-up the shoe boxes-but contact your Area Co-ordinator, Teresa Willson before you do this to ensure that you can get the goods to us. No knitted stuffed toys please.
Please contact Teresa on 01582 482681.
Thank you: this will give a poor child a Christmas to remember.
Registered UK charity number 1001349

Sunday November 30th
10am to 3.30pm
For a Stall call Gil on 723109

Raising the question in Parish News last month as to whether the phone box is still required caused a bit of a stir! Inspired by these reactions, our intrepid PN roving reporter trod the streets to take a closer look into the situation. A Front Street resident, whose home is very close to the box, is concerned about late night noise and disturbance. Another resident commented that the picture last month was not our box so, making amends, here's a shot of the real thing. (We did originally have a red box, but this suffered at the hands of the glass shattering fraternity and this more robust unit took its place some years ago. Not so attractive, but serves the purpose.)
Underlying PN's question was a feeling that the phone box was not used these days. However, whilst on this photographic assignment a Slip Ender did make a call or two. He said that the assumption that everyone had mobiles these days was not true and that he used the box two or three times a week.
So we need do need a box, QED.
Resiting it? One or two felt that the area outside the Post Office might suit. Perhaps this should be taken into account in the considerations being made about the space there.

Road Madness!
On the subject of traffic (vehicular and pedestrian) around the crossroads: the Parish News editor, no less, was in pole position outside the PO recently, waiting for the lights to change before driving on across Markyate Road into Grove Road. A car drew up behind but rather than stopping took a much more creative approach, the driver swinging his or her car out, passing the editor's car, turning sharply left at some speed over the pavement, missing the traffic light and postbox by inches, before carrying on his merry way towards Markyate. Phew! Zero out of ten for safety and consideration for any mortals on foot: these actions must be criminal!
The editor was so bemused by all this that he unfortunately omitted to take the registration number for reference to the police, as he surely would have done had he not been suffering such incredulity.

10AM - 2PM

Diners at the recent Harvest Supper in the Slip End Opera Haus, were treated post prandially to a force majeur. Local impresario Liz Higgens' production of her latest musical, "Mein Fayre Musique Mann", is a story of touching romance, encapsulating torn hearts and political intrigue.
Interestingly and perhaps inevitably, the performance was presented in monumental Wagnerian style, both challenging to the performers and requisite of the utmost concentration and patience by a hard suffering, if game, audience. The Austro - Prussian cast, specially imported for the production, were a welcome change from the overplayed, home grown talent who normally appear on these occasions. (Days are long gone and fondly remembered when rising stars Peter de Lange (now at La Scala, Milano) and Andrew Harland (with the RSC these days) showed us their early promise in Schlippe Ende.)
Individually, performances were mixed: leads Irena Groenwald (who played a recalcitrant nun), Elena von Crimpnel (the Contessa) and Johannes HoŽgenz (von Trippe) were all on reasonably good form. The tendency of the male lead to sing just a shade flat was rescued to some extent by the outstanding talents of the ladies. But beyond any doubt the stars of the show were the plucky chorus line girls, bravely persevering throughout the piece, despite meanderings from script and score by several of the cast. 

Perennial favourite RŁdi Fleischmann sparkled, rendering the Maximillian cameo with dash and aplomb. His lines were delivered perfectly, if not entirely in the correct order. Up and coming starlets, Jan and Pyotre Velson, showed promise and will improve with more experience of this gŤnre difficile. On the downside, somewhat tired performances were delivered by aging Thespians, DŁmconf von KoŽnigston and Otto-KenniŽ Crotzehitze. Admirably attired, KoŽnigston's talent did not match the needs of a demanding part. And what of Crotzehitze? To be kind, a lack lustre performance further marred by the costume department, who curiously dressed him more suitably for a Burns' Supper rather than for Prussian melodramaÖ
The piece was directed by the indefatigable Frau Lisbett von HŲŽngŽnzŽ who, despite her best endeavours to handle proceedings with Teutonic authority, failed to maintain control over her cast of somewhat ill-disciplined prima donnas. Overall, an adequate production, if not of Oscar grabbing significance: perhaps it suffered "overpeak", with a few too many hours spent in the rehearsal room?
Thankfully encores were none and curtain calls were few as the audience including, it has to be said, your PN critic, were concerned more with "last order" priorities in das Rising Sun Hof und das F. unt R. Kellar.
Loella von Gootmann

Parish Council were approached by some youngsters a while ago, about a skateboard park in the village. PC has identified space on the Peter Edwards Playing Field that could be used. I took it upon myself to research the possibility of obtaining funds for this venture. There are two sources from whence funds may be obtained. 
The first is the Local Network Fund, government funding aimed at young people 0-19, with difficulties accessing services and amenities. To apply for this fund you must be a locally managed voluntary or self-help group. You must be locally based (we are), focussed on children and youngsters. On achieving this status other charities can be approached for money. 
Initial approaches to these organisations is usually by someone on the PC, in this case me. Any group must be run by the locals: as I see it with a split of young people and their parents or guardians plus at least one parish councillor, essential if the group wants to ask for PC fund grants in the future.
I have forms and details and a contact of someone who will help with the documentation. We now need the will and help of young people, parents or guardians who have already expressed a desire to help set this up and keep it running. I have been approached by some parents but need a lot more help and input to get this off the ground. I need to know how many of you are interested, whether you would be prepared to help out in any way. Having collated that, I also need to arrange the hire of a hall so that we can all get together to discuss this get the show on the road.
Presently, there is little for our young people to do. This scheme will not only give access to a skate park, it will also give them access to, for instance, a locally run taxi voucher scheme for young people so that they can get out of the villages in the evenings. This scheme is run as a joint venture with the Local Rural Transport Scheme, another committee that I attend on your behalf. There are many organisations and schemes that our youngsters can get access to if we form into a group. I've registered us initially as the Slip End Youth Group, boring I know, perhaps someone can come up with something better!
So, all of you out there sitting around waiting for things to happen - lets get going. Ring me, or e-mail me or write, or even call round to me giving me your names, ages, mums., dads. kids, interested helpers. With this to hand I can get the hall hired and a date agreed for our first meeting. You can't say I haven't tried for you, I can't do this on my own, your help is needed.
Finally, don't try to text me please, I haven't mastered that bit of techno yet. 
Christine Benson, 
Chairman, Slip End Parish Council.
PS. I've finally got round to doing something about the Chairman's Chain of Office, with a bit of luck by the time this scheme gets off the ground I will have a bit of 'bling' to wear for the opening. 

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