- Health Secretary Matt Hancock told Penn’s MP Dame Cheryl Gillan this week that over 1,000 people a day are being tested for Covid-19 in Buckinghamshire. Dame Cheryl said some teachers in her Chesham and Amersham constituency were waiting 21 days for tests – a figure Mr Hancock did not accept. Pupils at two schools in High Wycombe were confirmed with the virus this week.
- The number of new Covid cases increased locally this week but at a rate lower than the national average. In the seven days to Wednesday night 34 new cases were confirmed in the Wycombe area; nine in the Amersham area and seven in the Beaconsfield area. In Penn, Tylers Green and Hazlemere the number of new cases were statistically insignificant, the official register noting they were between nought and two.
- The NHS test and trace QR code was unveiled in local pubs, businesses and sports clubs yesterday as the phone app enabling you to scan the code went live in Buckinghamshire. It is easy to download from the Apple, Android or Google store and will greatly speed up the track and trace system.
- Buckinghamshire NHS Trust has slightly eased restrictions in the county’s maternity units. They include enabling partners to attend births and limited visiting to maternity wards. Meanwhile the county’s health authorities said there may be delays in answering 111 calls, especially at the weekend, because of an increase in the number of Covid-19 related inquiries.
- Local pubs have adjusted to new restrictions imposed this week. All are closing at 10pm. At the Red Lion in Penn last orders are between 9pm and 9.15 to give people time to drink up. Customers and staff are required to wear face coverings at all pubs except when seated at tables. Some local pubs are keeping a supply of masks in case customers forget. At the Old Queen’s Head in Penn the masks cost £1 each with the money going to the charity Hospitality Action, which helps those in the hospitality industry facing health and financial problems during the current crisis.
- Hazlemere youth centre in Rose Avenue has reopened this week after a six month closure and a major refurbishment. The amnesty on fines for overdue library books ends on 30 September. Customers must return or renew books by then to avoid a fine.
- Windsor Theatre Royal is resuming performances next month with socially distanced seating and bookings only accepted from single households comprising six or less people. Wycombe Swan has pencilled in 31 January for resumption of shows. Aylesbury Waterside is hoping to resume shows from 27 November although it has cancelled its pantomime Cinderella.There’ll be no Christmas light-switch on in High Wycombe this year, instead there will be a laser light show in the streets.
Parking restrictions – New parking restrictions have been agreed for Penn and Tylers Green, including the provision of double yellow lines in Elm Road to try and prevent parking on the main road for Penn Surgery, and at the junction of Coppice Farm Road and Hazlemere Road to prevent parked vehicles obstructing through traffic.
Pupil tragedy – An inquest will be held into the death of 16 year old Apryl Scorer, a year 11 pupil at Sir William Ramsay School, who died in France during the school holidays. Apryl, who attended Manor Farm School when she was younger, was a talented dancer who wanted to train as a counsellor. Her headteacher described her as “bubbly, smiley and an absolute pleasure to be around.”
Broadband boost – Ultra-fast broadband is now available in most of Penn and Tylers Green after engineers switched on the fibre cabling in the area earlier this month.
New vicar – The new priest in charge at Penn Street church is the Rev Ruth Atkinson.
Farewell Gilbert – Gilbert Knight, of Hazlemere Road, Penn, a long time resident of the village and stalwart at the cricket club, the local church and amateur dramatic groups, died this week after fighting a long illness.
Christmas shoeboxes – People in the village are being invited to fill a shoe box with gifts for children in 130 poorer countries in Operation Christmas Child, organised by the Samaritans. Emma Byrne of 11 Kings Ride, Tylers Green is collecting the boxes at her home until 6 November. Details on www.smaritans-purse.org.uk
Research cheque – A charity launched following the death of 18 year old Alexander Jansons, of Beacon Hill, Penn seven years ago handed over a cheque for £100,000 last week to the Royal Brompton and Harefield Hospitals Trust for research into heart disease. Alexander died from the rare heart condition myocarditis. The charity has raised a total of half a million pounds since it launched.
Semis planned – Plans have been submitted to convert the former antiques shop at the corner of Hazlemere Road and The Larchlands, Penn into a pair of semi-detached homes. The building was converted into a single house three yeas ago.
Cup success – In their first ever appearance in the FA Vase competition, Penn and Tyers Green beat Burnham FC1878 by one goal to nil in the first preliminary round. They play AFC Hayes in the next round in October.
Cricket awards – Chris Mason was named first XI player of the year at the Penn and Tylers Green Cricket Club awards. Mark Woolley was 2nd XI player of the year; Lochie Christopherson young player of the year and Marcel Marriott the colts player of the year. The first team finished its nine game season in sixth position in the Chilterns and Mid Bucks Premier League.
Jobs swap – The Government says it is working on a unique scheme which will enable people in the area who are losing their jobs in the aviation industry to “pivot across to the film industry, bringing their skills to a growing and booming industry.” In the House of Commons, the Work and Pensions minister Mims Davies told Wycombe MP Steve Baker the scheme involved film industry employers, including Pinewood, and local enterprise agencies.
Store reduces – House of Fraser is planning to ditch the top two floors of its department store in Wycombe’s Eden Centre and concentrate on the ground and first floor. The Eden Centre has submitted a planning application to convert the top two floors into a gymnasium with a lift entrance where the current Nero coffee shop is situated.
Novelty hotel – The new Moxy Hotel on the old Slough Library site will have a Thunderbirds theme to honour the making of the iconic puppet series in Slough Trading Estate in the 1960s. Each floor will be themed on the appropriate number of a Thunderbird vehicle. The hotel, which is due to open in the new year, is hoping to attract customers using Crossrail.
Pupils isolate – Eton College has confirmed that a “few” of its 1,300 students are in isolation having tested positive for coronavirus on return to school. Wycombe Abbey, which was this month shortlisted as a finalist in the girls section of the Independent School of the Year, hasn’t said how many of its pupils have tested positive on return but says it has adequate isolation areas if necessary.
Dog fines – People who do not clear up their dog’s mess in Windsor and Maidenhead face £100 fixed penalty fines if they are caught by a team of enforcement officers employed by the council. The team will also target fly-tippers in localised littering hotspots.
Earthquake probe – Seismologists are trying to discover what caused an earthquake in Aylesbury earlier this month which measured 3.8 on the Richter Scale. One resident told the Bucks Herald: “The walls started shaking and the crockery in the kitchen was rattling. It’s not the kind of thing you expect on a Tuesday morning in Aylesbury.” There have been four minor earth tremors in the northern Chilterns this month which experts believe may be due to the ground still slowly rising after the last ice age 11,000 years ago.