New Dementia Resource for the library

A collection of resources to help people whose lives are affected by Dementia was launched at Church Stretton Library as part of Dementia Action week.

Left to Right: Pete Banford, Rawden Parslow, Sheila Davies, Vicky Munro, Hayley Reynolds (Church Stretton Library Manager)

The collection was purchased for the library by two local charities, Friends of Church Stretton Library & Stretton Dementia Friends.

The launch took place at the Memory Café, run by Stretton Dementia Friends, which meets once a month in the library. Pete Banford, Head of Culture & Communities for Shropshire Council and Rawden Parslow, Shropshire Council Principal Library Operations & Development Manager attended the launch and met with regular attendees of the Memory Café.

Sheila Davies, Chair of Friends of Church Stretton Library said:

We were delighted to help fund this resource, which would have been so useful to me personally when my mother was first diagnosed with dementia. This initiative will mean Church Stretton residents get helpful information early on and find out about resources that can help. I think all libraries should house a similar collection.’

The contents of the collection have been carefully selected to provide information and resources relevant to a wide range of the community, and not only those directly affected by Dementia. It includes:

Reading Well books: a collection of books approved by the NHS and Dementia Charities to provide information about dementia, practical advice for families and carers and inspiring personal stories written by people affected by dementia.

Books for children and young people: that aim to increase understanding about dementia and how they can help if one of their relatives has dementia.

Picture to Share books:   which provide beautiful high-quality pictures combined with a a small amount of text, to help stimulate memories and conversation for those in the mid to late stages of dementia.

Relish Jigsaws:  designed with a small number of pieces suitable for those with dexterity difficulties, pictures which stimulate memories and spark conversation and illustrations with vibrant colours to help with visual impairment.

Vicky Munro, chair of Church Stretton Dementia Friends said:

‘This collection is such an important resource and exemplifies our commitment to increasing awareness of, and information for, those living with dementia in our community. I’m proud to be formally launching this collection during Dementia Action week, when we are running over 14 activities for those with memory issues’

The books and jigsaws can all be taken out on loan from the library.

You can view the Dementia Collection here

The Lower Deckers

Friday 10th May 2024, 7.30pm, Silvester Horne Institute, Church Stretton

The Lower Deckers Shanty Group are a fun, contemporary shanty group from Shropshire and Herefordshire. Their repertoire embraces traditional shanties, songs of the sea and sailing, folk songs and more! These talented singers regularly perform around the country at festivals, pubs and cafes, sharing their love for maritime music.

If you’re in the mood for some toe-tapping sea shanties, come along and they are sure to lift your spirits! ????

Admission £10.00, Tickets (cash only) from Vines, the library and on the door

Plus games to raise
money for the RNLI

Narnia event

An illustrated talk by Ben Warren.

Tuesday 26 March 2024, 2.30pm in the United Reform Church Hall (URC)

The Narnia stories written by C. S. Lewis have been a publishing sensation – over 120 million copies have been sold since they were first published in the 1950s. In this talk Ben will explore the factors that led to their creation: the people Lewis met, the landscapes he loved, his vast knowledge of literature (including medieval literature) and, pervading all the stories, Lewis’s Christian beliefs.

In addition, Ben will explore the evidence for an intriguing new theory that there is a secret Narnia code – that each one of the seven Narnia books is based on the characteristics of one of the seven medieval planets.The talk will be illustrated throughout – including some of the beautiful original Narnia illustrations by the artist Pauline Baynes. This promises to be a fascinating and entertaining exploration of the background to Lewis’s enchanting imaginary world. All welcome.

In March, Church Stretton Library are aiming to have a Narnia themed display and Burway Books will be selling books by C S Lewis at this event.

Next talk in the library

photo of various books by Russian authors
Some of the books Janet will talk about

Speaker: Janet Longstaff

Wednesday 28th February, 2.30pm

Following her successful talk on Turkish Literature, Janet Longstaff is introducing us to Russian Literature. She doesn’t intend to get political, but will be historical and link books with places she has visited in Russia. Janet has a collection of over 70 books both by Russians and about Russia, some of which will be available to buy at her talk to raise extra funds for the library.

Admission £5.00, pay on the door

Shropshire Council Budget Survey

How would you cut millions from Shropshire Council’s budget?

Shropshire Council has to find savings of £23 million in next year’s budget, in addition to the £51 million savings made this year. This is likely to affect non statutory services such as libraries and leisure centres.

Shropshire Council is asking residents to tell them where they should make savings.  The survey is lengthy and asks people to prioritise different local authority services.  We have written some Hints and Tips below which we hope you will find helpful.

We encourage residents to complete the survey. We also recognise that your priorities might reflect your own personal experiences of needing these services for either yourself or your loved ones.

Hints & Tips

Print or online – You might find it easier to print the survey and decide how you want to fill it in before entering online.  You can download a print version of the survey at the bottom of this web page.  Printed versions of the survey are available at the library and completed paper surveys can be submitted there.

Video – The 2 minute video in which Lezley Picton, Leader of Shropshire Council, explains how money is currently spent is well worth watching to give some context to the survey.

Statutory and non statutory services – Adult Social Care, Children’s Social Care and Housing Services are statutory services, meaning local authorities have to provide them by law for those who need them.  Most savings will come from other services.  Local authorities have to provide a library service as it is a statutory service. However, they can make savings by closing some libraries and/or reducing opening times.

Outdoor spaces – Where this is mentioned, it does not refer to outdoor spaces in Church Stretton.  Rectory Wood, Coppice Leasowes, Sandford Avenue Town Park, the two recreation fields, the cemeteries, allotments and the war memorials are all funded by Church Stretton Town Council and not Shropshire Council.

Prioritisation and suggested options – These two sections include questions asking you to prioritise different services, including leisure and library services.  Please make sure you answer these two questions.

Other questions

If you struggle to answer some of the other questions as you do not think you have sufficient information, you can always flag these as ‘neither agree or disagree’ and add a comment to that effect.

Leisure or library service? – Some residents might struggle to prioritise one of these services above the other, as they are both important to Church Stretton. Putting one close to the other in the prioritisation is the best you can do. 

We encourage people to complete the survey as it is important that the views of residents from this area are heard.  Please remember to include Church Stretton as your nearest town at the end of the survey.

Links to the online consultation and print version of the survey can be found at Budget consultation 2024/25 | Shropshire Council

A printed copy of this web page can be downloaded here

The consultation runs until 28th January 2024.

High Leasowes Illustrated Talk

Photo of High Leasowes in June showing wild flowers

Speaker: Sandra Whitlock

Wednesday 17th January at 2.30 pm in the Library

In September 2022, Sandra and Peter Whitlock managed to raise £400,000 through crowd funding to  purchase these  fields. The High Leasowes Management Committee now manage the three fields to improve habitat and increase biodiversity, whilst providing space for people to quietly appreciate the area. On a cold January day, we hope that you will join us to hear this inspirational story and enjoy photos of the fields at their best.

Admission £5.00, pay on the door. All proceeds going to support the library

Illustrated Talk

Glyn’s Garden

Speaker: Hily Clarke

Date 24th November, 2.30pm in the URC Hall

The illustrated talk will provide a potted history of gardening as a therapy.

Hily will also talk about the Church Stretton project and how it will be available to help a number of different groups locally.

Proceeds from the talk will be shared by Glyn’s Garden and the Friends of Church Stretton Library.

Help support these two local projects that are part of our rich local culture.

Admission £5.00, payable on the door.

Our 2024 Calendar now on sale

Calendars are £8.00 and can be purchased in Church Stretton, Library, The Outdoor Depot, Peppers, and Stretton Print and Supplies. (cash only please)

This year photos have been kindly donated by eight local photographers: Yvonne Beaumont, Richard Childs, Penny Hayward, Ron Parnell, Andrew Fusek Peters, James Russell, Geoff Taylor and  Simon Whaley.

This calendar will make a wonderful present for friends and family, as well as a treat for yourself.

Each photograph is A4 in size and and comes with an envelope suitable for sending the calendar through the post

All profits go to the library

If you cannot get into town we can arrange local delivery but postage would have to be added if delivered outside the Strettons area.

For further information email

More photos can be seen below.

If you would like to purchase a print from one of the photos in the calendar please contact the photographers direct.

Andrew Fusek
Ron ParnellEmail
Yvonne Beaumontprints not for sale
Penny Haywardprints not for sale