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The Easter Vigil

This  Saturday local  Formby residents , who are Christians celebrate the Easter Vigil.

PaschelcandleAlso called the Paschal Vigil or the Great Vigil of Easter, it's a service held in traditional Christian churches as the first official celebration of the Resurrection of Jesus. Historically, it is during this service that people are baptised and that adult catechumens are received into full communion with the Church. It is held in the hours of darkness between sunset on Holy Saturday and sunrise on Easter Day — most commonly in the evening of Holy Saturday or midnight — and is the first celebration of Easter, days traditionally being considered to begin at sunset.
(Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Easter_vigil Accessed 29 March 2013)

Enjoy the remainder of the Easter Celebrations and Monday's Bank Holiday.


Good Friday in Formby

Today is Good Friday.

Good Friday is a religious holiday observed primarily by Christians commemorating the crucifixion of Jesus Christ and his death at Calvary. The holiday is observed during Holy Week as part of the Paschal Triduum on the Friday preceding Easter Sunday, and may coincide with the Jewish observance of Passover
(Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Good_friday Accessed on 27 March 2013)

Here in Formby local residents will mark the event with 'The Good Friday Walk of Witness'. It starts at 11.00am from the War Memorial and finishes at The Pool Gardens. There will be a presentation through words, music and costume that will recreate the events of Jesus' last hours. From his trial before Pontius Pilate to his death on the cross.

The speaker will be Canon John Roberts from Liverpool Cathedral.


Maundy Thursday

MaundyPurses2It's Maundy Thursday today, it's also known as Holy Thursday, Covenant Thursday, Great and Holy Thursday, Sheer Thursday and Thursday of Mysteries. It's the Christian feast, or holy day, falling on the Thursday before Easter.

It commemorates the Maundy and Last Supper of Jesus Christ with the Apostles as described in the Canonical gospels. It's the fifth day of Holy Week, and is preceded by Spy Wednesday and followed by Good Friday.

The Maundy Thursday celebrations in the United Kingdom (also called Royal Maundy) today involve the Monarch,  Queen Elizabeth II since 1952,  offering "alms" to deserving senior citizens, one man and one woman for each year of the sovereign's age. These coins, known as Maundy money or Royal Maundy, are distributed in red and white purses.

(Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maundy_thursday Accessed 27 March 2013)

Local Residents Concerned About Parking Restrictions Impact

A local resident in Formby is urging neighbours to make their views known about some planned parking restrictions in the region of Gorse Way. These have been aproved but residents have until 3rd April to make their views known. In this case the original intentions behind the restrictions may have some unforeseen outcomes.

There is an interesting situation now developing around the Dunes Drive Squirrel Green area after Formby Area Committee on the 10 January 2013 recommended that between April 1 to October 31, Saturdays, Sundays & Bank Holidays only, parking will be prohibited 24 hours a day on both sides and full length of Argarmeols Road, Birch Green, Dunes Drive, Gorse Way, Larkhill Lane (East side only), Proctor Road, Squirrel Green.


Local residents had mostly voted in favour of these restrictions in response to the problems occurring a few days in summer by people visiting the nature reserve and parking on the roads outside their residences.

Some residents are now realising that with their driveways having no spare space, any visitors, be they friends or family, visiting at the weekends will have to find alternative roads to park on. With the restrictions covering so many local roads it would seem the roads around the Pinewoods Pub will be their nearest.

This is a distance of 1/3 of a mile for some and of course the restriction applies from April to October and also not just 9am to 5pm. Residents permits are not available.

Two Estate Agents have advised that houses with limited parking could find it more difficult to sell their property and this would usually need to be reflected in the value.
Quite an interesting scenario to have a weekend viewing of your house with the estate agent and prospective buyer having to park up near the Pinewoods Pub and walk for a 1/3 of a mile.

Displacement is another issue. Just which roads are all these cars going to move to and are they going to want the same parking restrictions?.

These Regulations were advertised in the Champion on 13 March 2013 and objections have to be made by 3 April 2013.

Tony Bonney
23 March 2013

Palm Sunday

PalmSundayaIn ancient times, palm branches symbolized goodness and victory. They were often depicted on coins and important buildings. Solomon had palm branches carved into the walls and doors of the temple (1 Kings 6:29). Again at the end of the Bible, people from every nation raise palm branches to honor Jesus (Revelation 7:9).

Palm Sunday commemorates the entrance of Jesus into Jerusalem (Matthew 21:1-9), when palm branches were placed in his path, before his arrest on Holy Thursday and his crucifixion on Good Friday. It thus marks the beginning of Holy Week, the final week of Lent.

In the Roman Catholic Church, as well as among many Anglican and Lutheran congregations, palm fronds (or in colder climates some kind of substitutes) are blessed with an aspergillum outside the church building (or in cold climates in the narthex when Easter falls early in the year). A solemn procession also takes place. It may include the normal liturgical procession of clergy and acolytes, the parish choir, or the entire congregation.

(source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Palm_Sunday accessed 23 March 2013)

Warmest and Coldest March Months On Record!

This year March 2013 is reputed to be one of the coldest on record. Last year  March was the warmest on record.

We were basking in the sun, the soil in the Edible Formby Garden project was rock hard and there was a 'hose-pipe ban'.

Siginificant climate changes or just odd weather? I know which theory my money's on.

Village Improvement: What would be your Priority?

Final up-dates posted at 7.00pm on 27 March

There are 4 choices, participants are invited to order their choices 1-3.
Here are the results so far to the question.

Q. 'What can be done to improve the village' what would be your priorities?

Make Chapel Lane a 'shared space? 31.4%

Replace and re-site the village benches?  25.7%

Improve the village noticeboard? 25.0%

Upgrade the cycle stands in the village?  17.9%


Brilliant Baroque To Lighten Your Day

This posting has absolutely nothing to do with Formby! But as a BBC Radio 3 fan I thought I'd share it with you as a contribution towards Red Nose Day. Many of us will be doing our bit towards this very worthy cause.

This is a brilliant Baroque Mash Up using Pachelbel's Canon as the starting point, enjoy:


Go on make this trend on Twitter, and go viral across the world!


Village Heritage Boards Finally Installed

HeritageBoard1Two brand-new 'Heritage Boards' have finally been installed in the village. One outside the swimming pool and the other outside Barclay's Bank.

I first suggested this idea in 2006 after I had visited Frodsham Village to look at their scheme.

Frodsham has  more  old buildings which is an advantage, nonetheless, in my view a similar scheme would benefit Formby. It's taken a long- time to get here, but I thoroughly approve.

I wrote about the idea on this blog in 2009.

The Parish Council has for some time been considering installing heritage boards. I visited Frodsham in 2006 and took a series of photographs to explain my suggestion. After a series of conversations ........ the Parish Council embarked on the 'Village Project'' which has led to several changes. Formby Civic Society have been approached about the idea of a 'Heritage Scheme' and I hope they support the Frodsham model. In the slides that follow I have included photographs that illustrate the potential of a scheme.

  • There is a nice planter donated by a local society, thus sharing the costs.
  • Even when an original building has gone the local blue plaque scheme records the history of the people and the building.
  • Other plaques record brief histories of buildings.
  • In my view Formby deserves a clock and the type illustrated is relatively cheap but very attractive and functional.
  • The heritage board is next to one of the public houses and this shown on the board. One of the slides shows this building standing next the heritage board, look for it as the slides change.

What do you think? Do you agree with me that this type of scheme would enhance Formby? Should there be similar schemes for other parts of the town, Freshfield for instance?

The original slides are available here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/seanbrady/sets/72157602763835931/

The present installation falls far short of my original ideas, for instance the 'Heritage Walk' has somehow migrated away from the village. Originally the idea was to make the village a place to visit in its own right. Formby is popular, but many visitors came and go without ever setting foot in our village, which is the 'heart of our town'.

In common with Frodsham activists I share the idea that Formby should be a 'Destination Town'. Despite the loss of the 'Portas Town' funding, perhaps Sefton MBC’s mysterious Capital Grant mentioned in my last posting will help to realise this dream.

What do you think? Do these ideas listed above still have merit?

Further references to the Frodsham scheme on this blog: