Archive for March, 2008

This evening the coordinating committee of the Village Action Group met.  Chair, Peter Trewhitt said “Despite our previous achievements, over the last year we have been in danger of being seen as the Village Inaction Group.  However that is to change“.  The committee have organised the following:

8pm Monday 21st of April
Sycamore Inn
A meeting of the Environment Group
This is an open meeting for all to discuss how we want to see the village environment be maintained and protected, also to specifically discuss our response to the Peak District National Park Authority’s appraisal of the Parwich Conservation Area

8pm Wednesday 21st May
Sycamore Inn
A meeting of the Affordable Housing Group
The movement to provided more affordable housing serving Parwich and the neighbouring hamlets has lost momentum.  If you need or may need in the future affordable housing or if you are interested in helping the cause, come along and have your say.

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Parwich Film wins Oscar


On Saturday night (29th March) there was a bash at the Whitworth Centre in Darley Dale to celebrate the work of Derbyshire Film. The project is finishing in its current form, having helped establish 12 local film groups including Parwich Film. Also various ‘Oscars’ were presented by Derbyshire Film to mark the occasion. Arnold, Sandra, Martin and Jean represented Parwich on the evening, and Arnold Chadfield received the ‘Oscar’ awarded to Parwich Film for Best Sound System.


Arnold and Martin with the ‘Oscar’ for Best Sound System


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All day Derbyshire breakfast

Yesterday, I met friends for lunch in Byways Tearooms in Bakewell. Inspired by Jane B’s ‘Well and truly replete’ post, I thought I would report back on the experience. I have been before, otherwise Byways is easy to miss, off the main street in Water Lane, and then up what seems quite a steep stairway. All the staff are efficient and friendly, and the couple who own it are local; Mr Swindell was brought up in Friden and has a brother and sister living in Parwich. The tearooms at the front retain their original Georgian panelling and character, but, with their mixture of different chairs and tables, they have not been over prettified. There is a newer larger room at the back as well.

The menu is straightforward, but the food excellent. Main meals range from All day Breakfasts, which I had to jacket potatoes and salads. Then there are sandwiches, cream teas and a good range of cakes. When talking later to Jane B about it, she said “Yes that is the place with the great tea, don’t they get a special blend from somewhere.”

Well, I was hungry and enjoyed my good Derbyshire breakfast, and, though it is not haut cuisine nor would they claim such, it is excellent food in relaxing and pleasant surroundings.

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‘Parwich’ as a Surname

I was ‘surfing the net’ looking at relevant links for the Parwich Film section, got sidetracked and came across a film director called Pete Parwich (not Big Pete and not Posh Pete, but Pete Parwich). The site for Nordic Film Days Lübeck in northern Germany (
) says the following about him:

After studying in Vienna and Dublin, Peter Parwich, born in 1969, found a credo in the words of his theatre teacher, George Tabori: “Humor is the absence of perfection.” Whilst this credo was a perpetual threat to the success of his studies in film directing at the Hark Bohm Institute, Hamburg, his present collaboration with the Schleswig-Holstein Film Workshop appears to have secured him in his mission to carry the Irish spirit out into the world.

‘So what’, you say. Well, I had been doing some research into the de Parwich family or families, possibly a junior branch of the Alsops of Alsop, who held land in Parwich in the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries. Some locally orginating surnames like Alsop/Allsop/Allsopp/etc have spread and prospered, however, until now, I had not found Parwich occurring as a surname later than the fifteenth century, the latest occurrence being a Nottingham merchant. Is this Pete Parwich a descendant of the same family?

So if anyone knows of any other occurrences of Parwich as a surname do leave a comment, or email me at, or contact the Local History Society.

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Parwich on Facebook.

Those of you who are registered with Facebook might be interested in joining a group called “I come from a place called PARWICH“.

Aiming “to re-unite the people that spent their youth in the small village of Parwich”, the group currently has 35 members – most of whom are “ex-pats” – and is adminstered by Ben Laycock.

Note: if you’re not registered with Facebook, then you won’t be able to view the page.

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Direct Bus to Derby Stops

The direct bus service from Parwich to Derby that went every other Friday has been discontinued (as of 23rd March 2008). For the people that used the service this is a big loss. Now if people want to get to Derby by public transport (as well as to anywhere else) they have to change at Ashbourne. There is quite a good bus service from Ashbourne to Derby, but the Parwich bus does not always connect with it, potentially meaning that a 20 mile journey can take 3 hours or more, not ideal for a shopping trip or visiting friends and family in hospital. To commute to anywhere other than Ashbourne by public transport is an impossibility.

The 449 to Bakewell, which runs alternate Mondays continues as normal, which, unlike the Derby service, is not an essential journey for most of our bus users.

There have also been changes to who provides the 411 service to Ashbourne, so check for any timetable changes.

We are planning a section on the site covering transport links, so do let us know abut any public transport, taxi or other relevant information you have to share, or want to find out about. Also share any praises of or grips with the public transport serving Alsop, Ballidon, Parwich and Pikehall. Alternatively if you don’t use public transport tell us why not.

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Do post your comments!

We are getting lots of positive feedback on the site both in emails to the team and face to face. This is great, but we would be even more chuffed if you put your comments in the comments section under the relevant post or on the relevant page. This is a community website, but it will reflect the community more if as many people as possible leave their thoughts and ideas on the site.

You won’t be coerced into joining the team if you leave a comment, though we would welcome anyone who want to get more involved. You don’t have to have your name published with the comment, you can always use a pseudonym.

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Clocks go forward tonight

Don’t forget to put your clock forward by one hour tonight!

At 0100hrs or 1am on Sunday 30th March 2008 the clocks go forward one hour ‘as civil time moves from Coordinated Univeral Time (almost identical to Greenwich Mean Time) to British Summer Time (BST)‘.  To find out more about why this happens see these two links:

National Maritime Museum

British Summer

Personally I don’t see why the clocks need to change at all, why not stick to what the Irish call ‘God’s Time’.

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Old Photo of Alsop Church


Click on photo to see a larger image

This photo of St Michael & All Angels Church, Alsop-en-le-Dale is hanging inside the Church and was sent to us by The Revd. Christopher Harrison. This Norman Church still retains it’s original Norman nave, doorway and font.

What does the number 1695 on the photo refer to?
Does it refer to when Alsop became an independent parish?

When was this photo taken?
The tower was built in 1882-83 by F J Robinson to imitate the Norman style, so we know the photo pre-dates this.

Do you know who the lady in the photograph is?

Alsop Church with the Tower.  Photo taken by Mike Radcliffe
Alsop Church today – taken by Mike Radcliffe

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Great Morning

Just had a super morning helping to clear up the Churchyard. There were about 10 of us getting stuck in, the yew has been well pruned & now the cross has been revealed, providing a lovely vista from the path.


Gravestones have been stripped of unwanted ivy, saplings removed, roses pruned and just a good general tidyup. We were blessed with a lovely morning and we had almost 3 hours before the rain started. It was a very sociable event, lots of gossiping (whilst we worked of course) and a welcome hot drink part way through, brought to us by ‘Big Ben’ on crutches!


Thank you to Emily and Little Ben for their help and handing out the delicious cakes. See what you have missed out on by not being there. Have no fear, it is not finished yet, so if anyone has any ideas about how we can progress comments on this blog are welcome.

Thank you to everyone that helped and to Peter Trewhitt for the photos.

To see more photos click here: (more…)

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Thinking of seeing a film?

As well as having another film showing coming up next Friday, the 4th April, Parwich Film has added to its links section a number of other film societies in easy reach of our villages and the independent cinemas in the towns and cities that surround the Peak District (there are a surprising number).

Also the links section will point you to a number of film review sites, in case you fancy seeing a film but don’t know what to see.

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Church Cleanup – Tomorrow

Tomorrow, Saturday we are doing a  cleanup of the Churchyard, if the weather is awful then we will be concentrating on other jobs that need doing inside, so there is no excuse not to be there!  We have a lovely Church which is always open to the public and this is pretty amazing when so many other churches lock their doors.   Spare an hour or two and join us tomorrow, it is for the benefit of not just the Church, but the village as well.

 Cleanup – Saturday 29th March – from 10am.

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Website Team Grows

Mike Atkinson, Jane Bennett and Peter Trewhitt (pheadair) are joined by four new bloggers: Christopher Harrison (the Vicar), Mike Hughes, Lewis Noble and Mandy Noble. Mike H has already mastered the Word Press software and the others will be trained shortly, though Lewis and Mandy already have experience of Word Press, so they may be giving the rest of us some pointers.

However we would welcome more people getting involved, especially anyone under twenty five.

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Last night’s AGM at St. Peter’s

Parwich Parochial Church Council had a positive meeting last night. Jonathan Marshall stepped down after six years as church warden. His dedicated input has been much appreciated, and it is heartening that he offered to take over as PCC secretary, fitting it in between his travelling the world’s railways. Helen Pitts and Martin Compton were elected unopposed as the new church wardens for St. Peter’s.

The Rev. Tim Morris, Superintendent Minister of the Ashbourne Methodist Circuit, attended the meeting to progress the closer working between the two congregations in Parwich. After the Chapel closes in May the Methodist will meet in the Lady Chapel at St Peter’s on the 2nd and 4th Sunday of the month at 2-30pm, and will join with the current family service there on the 3rd Sunday. The font and organ from the Chapel will be kept in the side chapel. There was discussion about how we could gather material on the history and people’s memories of the Chapel.

A lot of progress has been made on maintaining and repairing the fabric of the Church. Some work has already taken place and a number of projects are nearing fruition. Sunday 6th of July is to see a celebratory service dedicating the new stained glass window, the replica tympanum, and perhaps even the garden of remembrance. The service will also involve the dedication of an altar frontal in the Lady Chapel in memory of Dorothy Foden. However there is still a substantial number of repairs required, and the PCC will be exploring ways of raising money to protect the fabric of our church for the next 140 years.

In two weeks the AGM season continues with that of Alsop PCC on Wednesday 9th April.

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There are new pages posted under the Directory of ‘Local groups and organisations‘ on this site.  Have your say about what films you would like to see in Parwich, or post your reviews of the films we have already see.

Click here for the Parwich Film pages

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Derbyshire Wild Life Trust

The Derbyshire Wild Life Trust are busy recruiting new members in our area.  Do check out their website and have a think about joining?

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Grand Reopening of the Hard Play Area
Sunday 20th April
at 11am
by our local Holby City Star – Tom Chambers

This will then be followed by a mini tournament of tennis, 7 aside footie and netball with 3 teams formed from the major user groups taking part. Refreshments will also be available.

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Reminder: Wednesday’s AGMs.

Just in case you hadn’t spotted them on our Calendar page, there are two Annual General Meetings taking place in Parwich tonight (Wednesday).

At 19:45, Parwich PCC (Parochial Church Council) holds its AGM in the church.

At 20:00, the Carnival & Recreation Committee are meeting in the British Legion, where they will be welcoming new ideas for summer 2008, as well as volunteers to help out during Wakes Week. This is an open meeting, and all are invited to attend.

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Alsop in the winter fog.

Our thanks to Rob Francis, for agreeing to share these striking images with us. They were taken on the Sunday before Christmas, just below Alsop car park on the Tissington trail.

As Rob says: “The conditions were strange to say the least. One of them has the image on the photographer ( ie me) projected unto the fog – eerie!”

Update: In the comments, Peter T explains that this phenomenon – both the shadow and the rainbow circle that surrounds it – is known as “the brockenspectre and the glory“.

Please click on each photo to enlarge it.


More photos: (more…)

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Readers of the gardening magazine Bises will already have seen the feature on Church Cottage Garden by the photographer Jerry Harpur in their April edition (We think?). Jerry Harpur photographed several Parwich gardens (Gardener’s Cottage, Creamery Cottage and Church Cottage) last summer and the images are beginning to appear around the world.

For those who do not regularly subscribe to Japanese magazines here are a couple of pages from the six page spread. Sorry we have not completed the translation into English quite yet.


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There is an article in today’s (Tuesday 25th March) Derby Evening Telegraph on Saturday’s Opening Celebrations of our new shop, with an excellent photo of Janet and Tom Chambers.  However, remember you saw the scoop here first three days ago.

Click here to see the text of the article

Copies now available in the Shop.

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Shop opening hours

Janet is trying out the following opening hours for the new shop at the Sycamore Inn:

Lunch times



10am to 2pm

7pm to 9pm


10am to 2pm

7pm to 9pm


10am to 2pm

7pm to 9pm


10am to 2pm

6pm to 9pm


10am to 2pm

6pm to 9pm


10am to 4pm

7pm to 9pm


All day – 10am to 9pm

See Directory of Local businesses & services for the Pub opening hours

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Memorial Hall AGM.

Thanks to Amanda Johnson for providing us with this report.

The annual general meeting of the Parwich Memorial Hall was held last Wednesday (March 19th), with a succinct summary of a busy year from the Chairman (Mike Gerard-Pearse) and a clear explanation of the healthy bank balances of the Hall from the Treasurer (Ed Linnell).

The five elected members of the committee were re-elected without opposition: Mike Gerard-Pearse, Ed Linnell, Amanda Johnson, Janet Gosling and Sandra Chadfield.

The short (and sadly rather poorly attended) AGM was followed by an excellent presentation by Val Stevenson about the progress with the Big Lottery Fund Bid and how the Community came to be in this promising position in terms of potential funding for a new Hall.

Peter Trewhitt then displayed the new weblog and website pages, with an exciting account of how everyone can gain and share information and become involved.

There should be more Memorial Hall Pages on-line in the next few days, with the minutes of the meeting and the overheads from Val’s talk (Peter Trewhitt just needs someone to talk him through publishing traditional pages on the web – “I thought I knew what I was doing but it didn’t quite work”).

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Pikehall Page

It is our aim that this site will serve the same communities that the Memorial Hall was set up to serve, so we have been creating sections on the neighbouring hamlets. However it is necessary that people in those communities get involved. We now have a page for Pikehall, click here to see it. Do post any comments or suggestions for expanding it, and email to any photos of the hamlet, the harness racing or the surrounding area that can be put on the page(s).

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Well and truly replete.

Easter Monday, what shall I do today? Well checking the blog site gave me one idea, bearing in mind that I have a partner who is currently on crutches & can’t walk more than 200 metres. So I decided to go and start the process of testing out various eateries (purely I add for the benefit of this website – and at great sacrifice to myself!) For lunch we headed up to Edge Close Farm Tea Rooms, and having looked at their blackboard menu that included Roast Pork & Stuffing, Homemade Soup & other deletable dishes, we both opted for an All Day Traditional English Breakfast. The plate was full – including locally sourced bacon, sausages & oatcakes all washed down with Earl Grey Tea. We declined the homemade cakes & puddings (including the crumble and custard) because dessert was going to be taken at Alsop Church. (As advertised on this site.)

There we were greeted by Christine & her helpers & torn between which cake to choose – they all looked super & the ones we tasted were. The sun was blazing and we sat outside overlooking the valley, where else could be more perfect. It was lovely to see so many people coming and going and just enjoying themselves. If you missed out of this super afternoon I’ve included the details of the tearooms below & you can go to Alsop Church for Tea & Cake on any Bank Holiday Monday.

Edge Close Farm Tearooms (01298 85144), Flagg.

Winter Opening- Sat & Sun – 10am-4pm
Summer Opening (from April 10th)
Thu & Friday 11am-4pm
Sat & Sun – 10am-5pm

I will “force” myself to go out and test some other establishments & if you have any recommendations do email us.

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Parwich Honey

I was chatting with a neighbour about bees, and we were wondering how much is known about the history of local bee keeping and honey production.

The Domesday Survey of 1086 mentions the Royal Estate’s income from Parwich before 1066 as having been “£32 and 6½ sesters of honey“, suggesting that in Saxon times Parwich was a net exporter of honey. However by the time of the survey the income is recorded as being worth “£40 of pure silver“, making no mention of honey. There is a place name ‘honeylands’, located below Hawkeslow, suggesting this was associated with bee keeping. Before the Enclosures of the late eighteenth century and land improvement that would have eradicated heather here, this is likely to have been somewhere where the hives would have been taken in summer to take advantage of the heather blossom.



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Our thanks to Christopher Harrison for sending us this article.

If anyone was awake at 7.00 am on Easter morning and wondered why the church bell was ringing, this was Parwich’s contribution to the ancient tradition of celebrating Easter with a dawn service (well, just after dawn). There is something very primal about lighting the Paschal candle from a fire in the churchyard and following the lit candle into a dark church, while the acclamation ‘Christ, our Light’ is intoned three times.

The snow and wind did not make matters particularly straightforward, however, and in fact the candle had to be lit in the church porch. But the fact that several people did make it to the service in spite of the weather – from as far afield as Brassington and Mappleton – was an indication of our determination not to let anything stand in the way of our celebration of the climax of the Christian year.

Jonathan Marshall’s plainsong rendering of the ‘exultet’ gave us a glimpse of the timelessness of this Easter ritual, and this lifted hearts and minds in their contemplation of the awesome mystery of Christ’s resurrection. After four scripture readings, interspersed with hymns, by candlelight, the lights were turned on at the moment of acclamation ‘Christ is risen, He is risen indeed, Alleluia!’ The first communion of Easter followed shortly afterwards.

All were then treated to breakfast – even including fresh coffee from Jonathan’s state of the art machine. It almost felt disappointing that the snow had begun to melt by the time we went home after the service!

Christopher Harrison

Photo by Peter Trewhitt


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Tennis News

 Junior Tennis Coaching will start from Saturday 19th April, 10am for beginners, 10.40 for improvers and 11.20 for the U16 squad. Adult team training will take place from 12pm as organised by team captains.
Sunday 20th – 10am – After the Grand Re-opening of the Hard Play Area, there will be a mini tournament of tennis, 5 aside footie and netball with 3 teams formed from the major user groups taking part. Refreshments will also be available.

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Flagg Races: Easter Tuesday.

Flagg Races is held at Flagg Moor on Easter Tuesday, the 25th of March. The first of seven point-to-point steeplechases gets underway at 1.00pm, beginning with the famous stone wall High Peak Hunt Members’ race. The final race runs at 4.40pm.


Flagg Races is unique as a point-to-point course, in that it is the only remaining point-to-point meeting to run the Hunt Members’ race over natural hunting country.

The geography of the racecourse is perfect for the thousands of spectators who attend, with hilltop parking and well situated spectator areas.

In addition to the thrilling point-to-pointing, there are food outlets, trade stands, a licensed bar, TOTE and bookmakers for anyone who fancies a punt.

Admission to the course is £10 per adult, and free to all under-16s. Car parking is free, and the gates and car parks will be open from 11.00am.

For full details, visit the Flagg Races website.

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Happy Easter

It was a lovely service in Church this morning, beautifully led by Andrew. It was super seeing him bounding up the aisle with a sword, he made me feel positively exhausted (all to illustrate that Jesus is alive). There were lots of villagers and visitors to the service & lovely to see so many children there. The Wright children contributed some lovely readings. Afterwards whilst the adults were enjoying coffee & biscuits the children were able to hunt for Easter Eggs. The church looks lovely, everywhere you looked there was an abundance of daffodils all arranged by volunteers yesterday. Thank you.

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Thanks to Mike Hughes for sending us this picture of a snow-clad Parwich, taken on Easter Sunday morning.

Please click on the photo to enlarge it.


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Lewis Noble: A Year At Chatsworth.

Parwich artist Lewis Noble is to spend a year working with Chatsworth, making a body of work in response to the estate. The project starts in May 2008, and will culminate in a major exhibition in London, in May 2009. The paintings will also preview at Chatsworth, probably in April 2009.

Lewis spent two months at Chatsworth in 2001 as part of the Vickers Art Award. He will be working both on site and in his Parwich studio.

“I’m relishing the idea of returning to Chatsworth and I want to produce paintings that reflect the many different aspects of place. I can’t say exactly what form the finished work will take as I always like to respond directly to what I see and experience. I don’t want to put any limitations on it”

From May 2008, you will be able to follow his progress on the Lewis Noble Chatsworth Project website. Here you will find the artist’s blog, his image diary, and a chance to view the artwork as it is completed.

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We are experimenting with possible formats for pages for local groups. We can either create pages using the blogging software (WordPress) that generates most of PARWICH.ORG, or we can create them as more traditional web pages.

Click here to see an example of some pages made with the WordPress blogging software for the Horticultural Society.

We would welcome your thoughts on how this works, and whether other local groups might be interested in something similar for themselves?

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Here are some photographs from the grand opening of the new village shop, inside the Sycamore. Our local TV celebrity Tom Chambers was on hand to congratulate Janet, as were a whole crowd of well-wishers.

Inside the shop, you’ll find all the essentials, including fresh fruit and vegetables, free range Parwich eggs, tea, coffee, cereals, fresh bread, dairy products, canned and frozen food, household goods, sweets and crisps, and (as you would expect from a pub!) beer, wine and spirits. And if you’re quick off the mark, there are even some Easter eggs for sale.

As an added bonus, lunchtime and evening shoppers can stop and enjoy a pint or a glass of wine with their purchases – and what could be more civilised than that!

Thanks to John Fuller Sessions and Kevin Slater for the photos. To view the full set, please click here.


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Looking for something to do this weekend, then you might be interested in this information sent to us by Rob Francis:

Leawood pump on the Cromford Canal will be in steam this Sunday and Monday – 23/24th March. Entry is free but donations are welcome.

This is a fantastic way of looking through into the power of the industrial revolution that shaped Derbyshire. Also fun for children to see the massive beam engine fully working (all that fire,oil and steam) drawing up water from the Derwent to fill the canal. All functioning as it did 160 years ago.

More information

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Parwich in The Derbyshire Magazine.

Following on from last year’s cover splash in Derbyshire Life, there’s a lengthy six-page feature on Parwich in the April edition of The Derbyshire Magazine, containing many colour photographs of the village and its inhabitants, as well as interviews with a wide range of villagers. The reporter has done a fine and detailed job, and the article is well worth a read.

Copies of The Derbyshire Magazine are on sale in the new shop, priced at £1.75.

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Shop Opens Today

Our new village shop at The Sycamore is open today.

Congratulations to Janet. The opening times over the Bank Holiday Weekend are 10am – 9pm.

What if everyone in Parwich bought one thing this weekend, that would get things started.

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Lea Rhododendron Gardens

Today I went across to Lea Gardens near Tansley to get the Horticultural Society’s two season tickets, and was surprised to see how many of the earlier azaleas and rhododendrons are already in flower.



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Bank Holiday Refreshments

On Easter Monday make your way to Alsop Church, refreshments are on sale from 11am -4pm. To quote Christine, an Alsop resident,

Monday will see us serving steaming mugs of freshly brewed tea and filtered coffee, with plates of luscious cakes for you to choose. We look forward to seeing you all.

Tea & Cakes are served at the Church every Bank Holiday Monday.

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Parwich Shop opens tomorrow

Great News – The Grand Opening Countdown – 1 day to go

Tomorrow, Saturday 22nd March our new village shop is opening at The Sycamore. Well done to Janet. The opening times over the Bank Holiday are 10am – 9pm. Watch the blog to keep up to date with the shop opening hours from Tuesday.

Don’t forget – If we don’t use it we lose it – so let’s all support the new shop at the pub.

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