Volume 54 Number 2
January - April 2024
Lincombe Barn, Overndale Road, Downend, Bristol BS16 2RW
Tel. 0117 956 2367

Visit our website at
Facebook Lincombe Barn DFHA - @BarnDFHA
Registered Charity No. 1157237 Telephone 0117 9562367
January - April 2024
Volume 54 - Number 2
Office hours : Monday to Friday 9.00 am to 4.30 pm.
Office Manager : Zoe Tanner
Deputy Manager : Martin Bailey
Office Support : Jane Faithfull, Derek Whitchurch & Melinda Gunnion
Office Volunteers : Janet Hanlon & Maureen Walker

Dear Member,
I hope that you have been enjoying your clubs and classes and have made some new friends. By the time you read this edition of the Barn News, Christmas will be a distant memory but I hope it was an enjoyable one for you.
The Christmas Market this year seems to have been an enjoyable and successful event. A big thank you to everyone who helped out on the day to make it a success. We very much appreciate your help. We always need new helpers so if you feel you could help the Barn if only occasionally, please contact the Barn Office.
If you attended, I hope you enjoyed the Cleeve Singer’s Christmas Concert, which raises money for charity.
I should like to take this opportunity of wishing you all a very Happy and Healthy New Year.
Eileen Bendrey

The Management Committee wish to thank the members of "War Games" for their purchase and installation of replacement racking in the storeroom, which replaced a variety of "storage units". It now looks much more professional and will be able to accommodate much more than the previous configuration. It is much appreciated.

Treasurer’s Report

Following the Management Committee’s decision to expend a significant amount of money last year in improving the facility, the overall finances were reduced from £124,000 to £84,000.

For this current year, the Committee have created a budget for “one-off” items which should ensure a satisfactory financial situation at the end of the year.

The income from clubs/memberships continues to fall, and unfortunately some clubs have had to cease operating. With very few exceptions the concept of clubs does not seem to appeal to the “younger generations”.

The introduction of the credit card machine, which costs 1.6%, seems to have been successful, with more individuals using it each month.

For those who were unable to make the Annual General Meeting, I have included a few significant financial aspects of the Annual Accounts:

The main income success was the nearly £80,000 worth of hirings that were organised and monitored by the Office. (Out of the total £115,000)

The main outgoings was the work carried out on the roofs, external paths and the internal electrical updating – these three items cost over £45,000.

Our Insurers “suggested” that we should increase the buildings insurance to over £2 million, to cover all associated costs and this meant that our total insurance costs for the year are £11,000.

THANK YOU Many thanks are due to the Wargames Society for their generous procurement of replacement racking, and assembly in the upper store. Much Appreciated.

AGM – Constitution Update
It is intended at the next AGM to submit, for approval, a re-drafted Constitution.
Back in 2014 when Downend Folk House became a CIO (Charitable Incorporated Organisation), the Charity Commission “suggested” that all charities used a standard document, hand modified for their own use. It is now appropriate to generate a digital Constitution specific to DFHA, ignoring all the parts of the original model which are not applicable to us.
It is planned to have copies of both the current and proposed constitutions available from Easter onwards for members to review and make comments, and any modifications made prior to the beginning of the September term. These will be appended to the notice board.
This should hopefully allow the AGM to agree the new constitution in its entirety, rather than going through it line by line at the meeting.

With Christmas behind us and a new term of meetings commencing on January 4th, it's time to turn our thoughts to new projects for a New Year. I'm sure I'm not the only person to have a list of anniversaries and birthdays that need personalised cards and perhaps gifts, and coming to the crafters group on alternate Thursday mornings is a good way to pick up some new ideas and maybe borrow another member's materials.
This group is a good opportunity to find out about some new types of crafts and could maybe be the inspiration for that New Year's resolution. Why not come along for a trial visit and see if the idea of spending time with like minded crafters is for you? You could try something new, or spend a bit of time rediscovering an old hobby. We are all happy to help out on crafts such as knitting, embroidery, paper crafts and jewellery making, and of course, we end each session with tea/coffee and a good natter!
We meet up fortnightly in Page Room, and each session costs £1.50.

Firstly I would like to thank all my regular and not so regular people who have supported my Speaker Mornings in the past I hope you have enjoyed them and will continue to do so in the future.

As you can see I have booked Speakers from February until May.

Thursday 1st February
The Dramway by Richard Lunn

Thursday 7th March
Avon Wildlife Trust
Grow Wilder---Frenchay site
Speaker to be confirmed

Thursday 4th April
Happy Handbag by Jeanne Long
Help a Lady in Crisis

Thursday 2nd May
Gardening with Spring in Mind by George Alway

Doors open at 10.15 for coffee and tea
Talk. £3.
10.45 am until 11.45 am

At the moment, the committee is working on an outings programme.

Thank you once again for everyone's support and help.
A Very Happy New Year to you All.

Best Wishes
Christine Broadway.

Rehearsals finished for 2023 and the results of all our hard work were put to the test when the Choir had their Christmas Concert on 2nd December which for various reasons was again early in December. A Matinee seems to be popular as attendance was in the region of 60-70 people. Perhaps we are becoming fine weather people disliking to turn out at night. We again had some familiar faces in the audience and it was lovely to see so many people.
This year our guests were the TuttiFlutti’s a group of five flautists. As someone said they were a revelation, perhaps because the flute is seen as an instrument associated with orchestras and not as something capable of producing a combined beautiful melody. Each musician played flute of a different size. They certainly had requests to play elsewhere.
We had an excellent speaker on behalf of ‘Freewheelers’ who gave a good insight into their work. There are 100 volunteer bikers on call 48 hours 365 days a year carrying emergency supplies to hospitals. Their only financial support is by donations from the public. We wait to hear the total collection.
On 9th December we were reminded how much influence our weather has on events, for we were due to sing at Dyrham Church but due to the very high winds, we were relocated to the Kitchen of the house. Chairs and a keyboard were transported to the area for us to perform. People were redirected and appeared to enjoy the festive music. Only the weekend before a choir actually sang on the lawns. The venue seems to be a popular Christmas draw with the variety of choirs that entertain during December. It was obvious from a conversation in the Café that some people make it a regular annual visit. We certainly enjoy going to Dyrham.
As we left, I was reminded by our MD, we have another form filling time before the New Year to select our choice of music. I wonder if we will succeed in bringing some lovely songs back to the fore. Everyone did have the treat of some ‘Quality Street’ given by the National Trust by way of thanks.
The Choir Wish Everyone a Happy and Healthy New Year and look forward to welcoming you to our Concerts again later in the year.
Patricia Holmes Web. & Facebook

The Glass Engraving club.
The club meets on Tuesday mornings at Lincombe Barn from 10am to 12 noon.
We are a small, friendly, mixed group that takes part in this unique art form. Being small in number the club is eager to see new members. We are a self-help group, so aspiring members will be encouraged and guided within the club. A small amount of equipment would eventually be required, but to start off there is the necessary kit available within the club, for prospective members to “give it a go”. Occasionally we have a visiting professional glass engraver who mentors the group.
Interested? then feel free to pop in and visit us and see what the club is all about. A warm welcome awaits.
If you know of someone who might be looking for a fascinating hobby, then please pass on this information of the clubs’ activities.
Contact Alan (0117) 9572030.

Cross Stitch Club
All members returned in September and we were pleased to be able to greet a lady new to the area. We hope she is enjoying our company.
One or two of our members, despite falls and health problems have continued to turn up in stalwart fashion such is the friendly company and enjoyable nature of the Club.
This term the pressure was on to make sure we had enough completed work in time for the Christmas Market at the Barn on 11th November. A few of the members have, besides cross stitch, other craft hobbies so they additionally decided to ask for a table. Everyone really got stuck in and we soon had plenty of cards and the additional table, with the help of a friend of one member, also had plenty of decorative items. The result was a credit to the ladies extra effort and both tables raised approximately £150 each.
By the following Wednesday everyone was hard at work stitching Christmas Cards for next year as the Market this year was very busy and our stock of cards had been seriously depleted.
Hoping everyone had a good Christmas and hoping those who receive one of our cards has pleasure from it. Health to all in 2024.
Contact the Barn Office on 9562367 for details if you would like to join this friendly Club. Professional help is on hand for beginners to this hobby of cross stitch. It is very rewarding so why not give it a try.


The Cleeve Singers’ Christmas concert took place on the afternoon of Saturday 2nd December, to a very welcoming audience. The concert was in aid of the Freewheelers (also known as the Blood Bikes), who are volunteers delivering blood (and other things) to hospitals and medical centres around the South West. TuttiFlutti is a new flute ensemble, formed in September 2023, and were delighted to be invited to join the choir for this festive occasion.
The concert started with some items sung by the choir, interspersed with solo items and carols for everyone to sing. A lively ‘Gaudete’ started proceedings, although my favourite choral item was the comedic version of ‘The Twelve Days Of Christmas’, sung with gusto and beautifully clear words.
TuttiFlutti finished off the first half with five festive pieces, showing off the range of flutes they use. Within the group there is the piccolo, ‘normal’ C flute, alto flute, bass flute, and the giant contrabass flute which sounds two octaves lower than the regular flute most are familiar with, and played standing up. The ensemble started with ‘The Mischievous Elves’ by Grant Horsley, this was followed by a beautiful arrangement by Ann Cameron Pearce of ‘In The Bleak Midwinter’ by Holst, and then ‘The Twelve Or So Days Of Christmas’ with a few musical references for the ‘seven swans’ and ‘three French hens’. It was then time for the low flutes to take the stage, with two altos, a bass and the contrabass playing a haunting arrangement of ‘The Coventry Carol’. They finished with ‘Santa’s Symphony’, a fun piece that combines traditional carols with well-known classical melodies such as ‘Dance of The Sugar Plum Fairy’, and at one point juxtaposing ‘Silent Night’ with ‘The 1812 Overture’ – no canons required! These went down a storm with the audience, with many compliments gratefully received.
After the interval a short and interesting talk was given about the ‘Blood Bikes’, who do sterling work across the South West region. The concert finished with some more choir items and communal carols. Thank you to all those who attended, and to the Cleeve Singers for putting on a great concert.
Fiona Hunt – Conductor – TuttiFlutti
(TuttiFlutti is an inclusive flute ensemble for players of Grade 3 and above. They rehearse Fridays in term time at the Barn, 6.30-7.30pm. Please contact Fiona on 07817 629 691 if you are interested in joining – new members always welcome!)

As with many others, Covid proved a difficult time for us, with old members departing and it being difficult to recruit replacements. However, we do seem to have turned the corner with new members joining us and playing an active part in the Club’s activities.
The last few years have proved successful for us with external competitions, the Kingswood Salver in particular. Not sadly, 2023. Our abstract images did not do very well, the judge preferring something more recognisable. He did not understand the images, but he did, however, like the continuity of colour and one of them he would hang on his wall. That’s something I suppose. Let’s see what you think as our entry, which, together with comments, is hung in the corridor at the Barn.
The winter term, into spring brings a full set of guest presenters beginning with the intriguing title of ‘Shooting People’. Let’s hope no other clubs are disturbed by the noise! Other presentations will include ‘Can you tell the work of Great Photographers?’, ‘Architectural Photography’, the intriguingly titled ‘Every Step I Take’ (one for Sting fans?) and ‘Welcome to the Show’. There will also be the usual club competitions.
If any members of other groups would like to attend any of our evenings, on the second fourth and fifth Tuesdays of the month in Concorde Hall, they will be more than welcome for a minimal door fee of £3.
To help you prepare for winter an image from our club Chair, Roy Shergold, who is masterful with black and white.

Natural History Society. 
Our meetings for 2024 are as follows:

Thursday afternoon January 25th,  "Is there honey still for tea?" 
  Tales from the hive with beekeeper Fred Ballard held in Page Hall 1.30 to 3.30pm

Thursday evening February 22nd,  "Out of Africa" with Mary Lewis.
Held in Concorde Hall 7.30pm

Thursday evening March 28th,  "Surprises near home" with Brenda Sheppard, followed by
"Oxford Natural History Museum" with Ray Gooding.  Held in Concorde hall 7.30pm

Visitors are welcome, £3 per meeting.
Looking forward to seeing you,  Pam Gooding

Music for Enjoyment.
Sadly, the group did not attract enough members to meet this year.  Perhaps the day or time are wrong.
We usually meet on a Friday afternoon in Grace Room to hear a programme of recorded classical music on a theme.  For instance, a composer or a subject like music about the sea or Opera, Ballet etc.  Ideas are endless.
If there is sufficient interest I am willing to present a couple of programmes in February or March, assuming I can book a suitable room and time.  But first I need to know if anyone would come.  If the idea is of interest, could you please send a message to the Barn Office for Pam Gooding, giving your name, email and telephone number with details of acceptable times and days of the week.  Say, either a morning coffee concert or an afternoon matinee musicale.

Many thanks, I hope to hear from you, Pam Gooding.

Flower Arranging Club
Busy couple of months for us !
25th November   our Christmas wreath making workshop , with Christmas stalls , refreshments!
40 plus attendee’s , everyone went home with a lovely festive wreath for their door!
Then in December , we had our Christmas demonstration / show in the evening ,   well attended, with Christmas stalls and beautiful arrangements made by Lesley Hunt, raffled  off at the end of the evening .
Here’s to 2024 !!!!!!!

If any business or organisation would like to place an advertisement in the next issue of the ‘Barn News’ please contact the office at or the editor .

The ‘Barn News’ is published three times a year; January, May & September.

The rates are :- FULL PAGE £40



The Barn’s History Part 3
When the council eventually agree to Lincombe Barn remaining as the permanent site for Downend Folk House Association, planning permission was at last granted allowing a temporary ‘Classroom’ extension to go ahead. A prefab arrived to the surprise of the 80 members who applauded the quick action of the committee. It was transported all the way from Nottingham.
The extra space enabled a total of 42 groups including :- Dressmaking, Natural History, Local History, Drama, Crochet, Pewter work, Soft Furnishing, Enamel, Yoga, Angling, Bridge, Gardening etc. to form part of the Folk House.
By 1974, even more space was needed as the association’s membership had expanded so much. Another planning application for a larger permanent extension was made and granted. At this point, the M32 was being built and therefore there was no need to widen Overndale Road as traffic would use the motorway thus reducing the amount of vehicles using Overndale Road.
The association launched an appeal for £10,000. We had already raised £1,000 through Fairs and other social events. We also applied for grants. Bristol Rover’s forward player, Bruce Bannister, announced that a £500 anonymous donation was received. The popular sportsman opened the appeal and became the 1000th member of the ‘Barn’ . In 1975, we were the largest of any community Association in the Kingswood District, yet occupied the smallest premises.
During that year, we were well on our way to raising our share of the cost of the new £40,000 extension. (Jubilee Hall) 50% to be paid by the Department of Education and Science, 25% each by Avon and Kingswood Councils and by ourselves. We had already collected £5,000 of our £10,000 share.
November 1978 saw the opening of the new hall after a 5 year battle for expansion. The association attracted members from all over Avon and parts of Gloucestershire. Membership was expected to swell to 1,500 by the next year. The opening was attended by, Terry Walker, M.P. for Kingswood; Peter Abrahams, Chair of Avon Counties’ Leisure committee; Jean Hamner, the associations secretary; among others.
1980, saw the start of a years celebrations to mark the association’s 10th anniversary. They included, wining, dining and dancing among other things.
1985, saw the launch of another appeal. This time £20,000 for another extension (Concorde Hall). It took 2 years to raise the money to complete the scheme. The key presentation took place in December 1985.
Other changes were made to increase the accommodation, including furbishing other spaces to create Page Room, Heath and Cleeve Annex to bring us up to today’s Premises of seven rooms and halls.
In 1991 Downend Folk House Association was awarded the Gulbenkian Award for Community Buildings by the then, Prince Charles.
Tributes must be paid to all the people who helped found the Folk House, too many to mention, but especially Jean Hamner, who was secretary of the Association then and was awarded the MBE for her community work. She was a councillor and previously taught at Downend School. She said “There is always a demand when people want to get out of their house to pursue hobbies and meet other people. We get many people who have moved into the district and don’t know anybody. A meeting place with no political or religious overtones is very important”. Jean was very active within the Barn right up to her death at 100 years of age.
Times have changed, and most people no longer need outside interests as they used to; consequently, we have fewer clubs in the organisation but have more private organisations who now provide most of our income. Thankfully, we have very competent people in the office to service the various people who rent rooms for their groups and businesses and a very helpful group of volunteers who help in the office, maintenance, finance etc. Without these people the Barn couldn’t exist.
This concludes the history of the ‘Barn’ all of which was drawn from the scrap book now in the ‘Barn’s’ archives.

Bruce Gibbs


Spring Tuesday 2nd January - Thursday 28th March 2024

Summer Monday 15th April - Friday 26th July 2024


Approximate sizes In feet in metres

Ground Floor with Disabled access
Jubilee Hall 45 x 38 14 x 11 £27.50 Per Hour
Jubilee Small Partition £16.50 Per Hour
Jubilee Large Partition £20.90 Per Hour
Jubilee full hall 37 x 45 11 x 14 £27.50 Per Hour
Concorde Hall 40 x 23.5 12 x 7 £22 Per Hour
Page Room 25 x 15 7 x 4.5 £13.20 Per Hour
Grace Room 19 x 15 6 x 4.5 £8.80 Per Hour

First floor with no disabled access
Britannia Room 19 x 16.5 6 x 5 £8.80 Per Hour
Cleeve Room 14 x 14 4 x 4 Not Available
Cleeve Annex 8 x 11 2.5 x 3.5 Not Available
Heath Room 10.5 x 9 3 x 3 Not Available

Tables and Chairs provided

Charge for exclusive use of the kitchen £27.50

To check availability and to book, contact the office manager
Zoe Tanner e-mail Tel. 9562367



May - August 2024 2nd May 2024 12th April 2024

Sept - Dec 2024 5th September 2024 16th August 2024