Friends Matter – October 2020

‘Seasons of Mists and Mellow Fruitfulness’

With a truly autumnal feel to the air, as the last gasp of summer is almost behind us, we can look forward to the colours of autumn in all its glory. Whilst the thought of colder times to come, along with mixed weather messages, like every season autumn brings its own colourful images. Bright skies; tractors hard at work; the smell of fruit and spices as jam, pickling and other culinary activities take place and gardens begin to shut down for the winter. As you’ll see we have a packed newsletter with lots going on and invitations to all to help and play a part in our fundraising activities. Furthermore, you can enjoy autumn with us every Monday morning on our regular health walk around Berry Head. It only takes an hour with stops along the way and many of us finish with a coffee stop and chance for a natter. At the time of writing the ‘rule of 6’ is in place but as an official walking group we are exempt. Be assured, we still comply with social distancing and encourage smaller groups of six when taking the walk. We would like to think that common sense prevails, and every opportunity is taken to lessen the risk so that we can continue walking under Covid 19 conditions.

The Great Return


On Monday 7 September, Brixham Library returned to its normal hours of opening. You might wonder why I mention this but all through the pandemic, our library has been at the forefront of pushing the boundaries to enable its services to come back to you as soon as possible. In a sense, Emma and her team have been trialling what could be done to enable safe use for both staff and library users and their experiences have proved of huge benefit to the wider library community in both Torbay and Devon. As I write this, 48 of the 54 libraries are now open and in comparison, to library services in other parts of the UK are well ahead of the game. Library staff have been involved in conversations with libraries outside of the Devon area to learn from their experiences both in the UK and abroad and can well be considered market leaders in this respect. As libraries have reopened, take-up has been very varied and it will come as no surprise that in larger towns and cities, return numbers are lower than normal reflecting the change in lower high street visitor patterns as a result of the pandemic. However, for many the library was the first-place people had visited when venturing out for the first time, as they felt safe visiting, and this is surely an accolade to treasure and nurture with those who still have concerns about going out.

Loyalty Card News


We are always pleased to receive news from our loyalty card partners and none more so than from Chloe Pavely, who runs the Fishcombe Cove Café. Many of you will have seen articles in the local press and on local TV news as she championed her ‘Spend a Penny’ campaign. She writes:

With regards to Autumn, the cafe is now trading Tuesday – Sunday 11am until 4pm (weather depending). We hope the cafe will stay open until November this year, just after the October Half Term however this is weather dependent. 

 We have new items on the menu including new Italian Tascas, filled with exciting fillings, served hot to keep warm on autumnal days. Our bread bowls will be filled with tasty Homemade soups. And we have a range of gluten free and vegan cakes to accompany freshly ground coffee, fair trade tea or hot chocolate. 

 With regards to The Spend A Penny Project, we hosted a few fundraisers over the summer holidays, and have raised an incredible £3,000 in total. This will keep the toilet block open for the remainder of this year, and for next year. I plan to renovate them, hoping they will eventually enhance the area, I would like to put new sinks in and get electricity up and running too. This will all be down to Torbay Council allowing me to do so, but the support has been overwhelming so far.

 Such news above is always good to hear and we hope that you will continue to support our loyalty card partners as they support FoBL and in turn the library in so many different ways.


Brixham Maid

FoBL is pleased to welcome Brixham Maid to our loyalty card scheme. Sally opened the shop in Middle Street earlier this year and has a fine range of locally made jams, pickles and chutneys for sale and of course they are all her own work. Sally writes:

‘My mother was my inspiration, she taught me the value of homegrown produce.  From early childhood we would enjoy making seasonal jams, pickles and chutneys using freshly harvested ingredients from the garden. Many years on my passion for making preserves has been reignited through an abundance of crops grown on my allotment. I began experimenting, pairing, creating exciting flavours and with it my understanding for the science and art of preserving developed. Proving popular amongst friends and family the journey of Brixham Maid began. Brixham is home for me. I live with my husband, children and our Jack Russell ‘Josie’. Jam HQ is an old fisherman’s’ cottage over-looking the beautiful harbour – it’s where the magic happens’.

​If you haven’t visited yet, you won’t be disappointed as they not only taste good but make wonderful presents as well as treats. Sally is offering all current FoBL members a 10% discount if you spend more than £15.00. So, with Christmas on the far horizon this may help to solve all those gift problems for you.

For further information why not check out Sally’s website or just call into the shop.

44 Middle Street, Brixham, Devon, TQ5 8EJ.

Grand Raffle & Christmas Market Stall

With autumn and thoughts of Christmas starting to bubble to the surface, we have joined together with Brixham Library with a Seasonal Raffle. Tickets cost £1.00 each and are already available in the library. The draw is taking place on 13 December 2020 so there is plenty of time to encourage all your friends, neighbours and relatives to pop into the library to buy some and you never know perhaps borrow a book at the same time. Like any raffle it is only as good as its prizes and Emma would welcome any donations to add to her growing collection which amongst other things currently includes:

  • Taste hamper
  • Alexa show 5
  • Lipsy set
  • Brixham Maid hamper
  • 2 x children diy smiggle drinks kits and pencil case

There will be more prizes to follow.

This nicely leads into the next joint initiative as we are planning a Christmas Market Stall in the library selling a whole range of goodies and gifts. We hope to launch this towards the end of November and hopefully more news in the November newsletter. In the meantime, if you would like to donate jars of jam, pickles, relish or chutney, soft toys (made from safety compliant materials), craft items, Christmas cards and tree decorations, please do pop them into the library the next time you are passing. Many local shops have lots of Christmas themed fabrics and trimmings and Sandy in Brixham Sewing Box is always pleased to help and advice with ideas. We hope to be able to provide cover for the stall some of the time and the library have kindly agreed to fill in the gaps.

Proceeds from both the raffle and the stall will be split between Brixham Library and FoBL. In the absence of our normal income generation activities this year we will be able to fill the empty hole in our coffers so that we can continue to support the library in every way we can.

Brixham Museum

A recent e-mail sent to us may be of interest and reads as follows:
From: legendarytenseconds <>

I have just released a new album of songs about the history of Torbay and I am donating money to Torquay museum from the sale of the CDs. One of the songs is about William of Orange landing at Brixham. Here is a link to the song: –

The Pageant of Torbay Part One Poster

Here is a link to the album—part.html

Regards, Ian Churchward

Mob: 07484300210

 And Finally…..

CAPTION COMPETITION – no prizes but please send me your entries for publication in next month’s newsletter.















‘When you’ve worked all morning doing the laundry then you’d feel exhausted too!!’