25th April 2020

Village News and Events

in Boxted and Langham

Welcome to this week’s newsletter. As we’re now in an extended period of lockdown, why not try some boredom busting tips (see below) to pass the time and help our community too.

If you wish to have an item included in this newsletter, please submit by Thursday 5pm at the latest. Thank you.

Stay safe everyone.

Beautiful Boxted

(We believe this photo was taken near Chapel Road on Public Right of Way 125-30)

Remembering Derek Webber the swarm catcher

It is with great sadness to hear that Derek died recently.

Derek was known for his beekeeping skills and his delicious honey which was sold locally. A former Headmaster of Great Horkesley primary school he also taught countless people bee keeping skills. All who benefited from his classes had huge respect and affection for him. A devout Christian Derek had been a Reader at Great Horkesley village church for 52 years. Rev Mandy Elmes, the rector for Boxted, Langham, West Bergholt and Gt Horkesley churches said “He is with his Saviour and the Lord and Heaven rejoiced when he arrived”

A fascinating video, posted on Vimeo, shows Derek collecting newly swarmed honey bees from orchard apple tree. Bees swarmed from a hive on the Apiary in June 2013. Action was captured by chance on an iPhone 4 by Robert Clare. Well worth a watch.

View the video at https://vimeo.com/69379540

Village life in lockdown

Ties Bouwmeester and Kate Crossman live on Straight Road, Boxted. They both work full time at Fisher Jones Greenwood Solicitors on Colchester Business Park, but also run a ‘certified location (CL)’ as part of the Caravan and Motorhome Club network.

Ties and Kate said:

“We have been working from home for 5 weeks now and are enjoying it so far. At first, this took some getting used to, however we are fortunate enough to work for a company with very good IT systems and we have therefore been able to access everything as normal including the office phone network – it is almost like being in the office!

So far we have found that it is easy to stay focussed at home, as there are less interruptions and distractions. However, we have also found it harder to stick to usual office hours, and have found ourselves regularly working longer hours. As we don’t have to physically see anyone, we are enjoying not wearing office attire. Kate has been able to walk our dog, Barney, every lunchtime, and he is also therefore enjoying the working from home initiative!

We have very good communication with our work colleagues, and have a Whatsapp group for our entire department, and another for our ‘mini team’ so that we can regularly keep in touch not only about work but sharing some of the fun things we have been doing. We have noticed an increase in email traffic, as whilst we would usually just chat to our colleagues about a particular issue, we are instead emailing them more often. Microsoft Teams is the ‘go to’ app for face to face contact with colleagues and clients.

We have found that we are visiting the fridge far too often, but have also had more time to exercise, so hopefully this will balance itself out. We are enjoying not sitting in the Colchester traffic every evening, and are therefore enjoying having more time to ourselves to do the things we enjoy, such as spending time with our animals for Kate, and working on cars for Ties.

We are missing our trips and holidays, some of which have been cancelled already. Like everyone, we are missing family and friends who we have not seen since lockdown began.

We have found that our area of law, family law, has been particularly busy recently. Sadly, this is due to separated parents disputing where a child should live or spend time during the current lockdown. It has been felt by some parents, that the other parent is exploiting the lockdown situation as an excuse to cause difficulties with arrangements for children. The head of the Family Division, Sir Andrew Macfarlane, spoke about this on BBC news on Tuesday evening – https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/education-52310034 Nationally, there has also been a reported increase in domestic violence.

Overall, we are fortunate to live in the beautiful Boxted countryside and have been enjoying our time at home. However, we appreciate that not everyone is in this situation, and we are mindful of those, including some of our own friends, who live on their own, or live in small apartments without a garden. It must also be a very difficult time for those who are trying to care for and teach their children whilst balancing work, or those who have lost their jobs during this time or are on furlough and are worrying about their future. We hope everything will go back to ‘normal’ soon, but who knows when…”.

Digital help at home

There will be no digital help at the Hub for the time being, but fear not! You can still go online and get help and support.

Michael Smith at Colchester Borough Council is still offering digital support via a remote service. See the Council’s webpage (https://www.colchester.gov.uk/digitalaccesssupport/) or, for further information, contact:

Get updates on Coronavirus from the government and take part in the latest symptom survey

You can get the latest information from GOV.UK straight to your mailbox. Sign up here:

The Government is asking you to share your coronavirus symptoms to help others. This will help the NHS to co-ordinate its response. https://www.nhs.uk/coronavirus-status-checker

Coronavirus fact checker

How you can fact-check claims about coronavirus and get updates straight to your inbox.


Bored during lockdown?

Steve Mann has come up with a couple of suggestions if you’re running out of things to do during lockdown, now that your house and garden are immaculate!

  • Now there’s less traffic on the village roads, we could take the opportunity to pick up the litter on the roads and pathways. Wear protective gloves or use a litter picker at all times. Now the Borough Council have re-started collection of recyclables, most of the litter can go into clear bags.
  • Adopt-a-road-sign. It makes everyone safer if speed limits and road junction signs can be seen easily. If there’s a reflective road sign in near your house, consider cutting away vegetation that’s obscuring it and give it a wash with soapy water.

These activities don’t need to be organised, people can do them as household units and should fall within the government guidelines.

As anticipated, we are now seeing a high demand for assistance with food and household essentials from elderly and vulnerable Boxted residents. We are now giving out care packages to our elderly, fragile and isolated members of the Boxted community.

We would like to support also any NHS workers in Boxted who are in dire need of help. The vast majority of people that we are assisting right now are well-known to us, and are those most in need

Therefore we would like to ask you if you might, from time to time, be able to donate ANY food, fresh or non-perishable, loo roll, household products or ladies’ sanitary wear/Tena products.

Donations may be collected by us from your doorstep, or you can deliver them to the doorstep of the Hub, Tuesday to Friday inclusive, 10 am till 2 pm.

We encourage everyone to join as one community. We have asked the vulnerable and elderly to get in touch with us should they need any help with the following:

  • Food supplies
  • Basic household essentials
  • Pick-up or refill of prescriptions
  • A friendly chat

We also offer a ‘meals on wheels service’ that you can order by telephone and which we can deliver to residents of Boxted.

You can contact us via telephone:
DAYTIME 01206 272129
EVENINGS: 07488 345019


Please note that the service we offer is primarily for those Boxted residents over 70 and those in most urgent need – who are vulnerable in these difficult times.

Please note that, whilst we are not open, we are operating a very successful home delivery service to anybody living in Boxted and Langham, not just those who are self isolating because of age/health conditions.

We are also continuing to have a post office service available at the shop. Thursdays from 9am until 12.30pm. The shop will not be open as volunteers will be working to receive deliveries and make up telephoned orders for our customers, but Post Office customers will be able to enter the shop one at a time just to use the Post Office.

Please respect your distance to help keep us all safe.

We are very grateful to Postmaster Chris who will be coming along to provide the service.
Please pass this message on to all friends and neighbours who do not have access to social media.

Church services

Churches can longer be kept open as places for prayer and solace.Therefore all churches will be locked and will remain so until further notice. The car park has also been closed for the time being although it is still possible to park and visit the graveyard.

Should you require prayer please contact Revd Mandy Elmes via email lwb.wb.gh.parishes@gmail.com.

Sunday services are now on the St Mary’s West Bergholt Website for all to view. This requires no Facebook account and therefore means everyone can access the recorded services. They will be uploaded on Sunday afternoons for as long as services are streamed.

Download the services booklet here


Psalm 46:1 ~ God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.

Calling all bright sparks!

Heather is in need of having a few lamps rewired, one broken and a couple that are from the US and need changing over to the UK.

Can you help? If you are an electrician in the village who can’t work and want something small and easy to do at home, please contact Heather who would be very happy to drop them outside your door for repair.

Contact: heatherlizamore@yahoo.co.uk

Camera lens cap found

A 52mm Nikon lens cap has been found on the road near Boxted church. If you have lost one, please contact Lisa Scott on boxtedvillagewebsite@gmail.com to reclaim it.

Next visit:
Saturday 25th April 5-8pm

Boxted Royal British Legion car park

Acting suspiciously

A fairly new blue van (reg no. FH14 UYB) was observed riding around Boxted at night, the drivers of which had been acting suspiciously. A caller at a resident’s house plus three other homes in the village have had suspicious evening visits within a 24 hour period. It’s not confirmed whether it was the same van or a different one at these sites.

The police have been alerted but if anyone has sight of it please contact the police on 101.

Langham and Boxted parish newsletter

With the current lockdown, Church guidance has deemed it unsafe for the regular monthly paper mailings to be distributed by volunteers.

Until such time as this situation changes, the Parish Newsletter will still be published and archived electronically on the Langham Village Website: https://www.langhamessex.org.uk

Sign up for the parish newsletter here

Useful websites for essentials

During these unprecedented times, you may find it useful to order some essential items online. Please be aware that these sites are currently experiencing high levels of usage, so you may find it difficult to access the supplies they offer.

Milk and More


Colchester Dairy


Who Gives a Crap Toilet Rolls



A Facebook group, “Colchester Borough Emergency Coordinations Group“, has been set up consisting of people offering help and support during this difficult period.

Useful links:

Boxted Village Hall
Boxted Village Website
Boxted Primary School
Boxted British Legion

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Newsletter editor: Angela McLauchlan : Design and layout: Shirley Szymanek