August 2020

COVID 19: Preston Help Line

Preston Parish Council and The Preston Trust would like to remind Preston residents that the helpline continues to be available during the on-going corona virus situation.

The phone line will be monitored daily from 8.00am to 8.00 pm.

Please note that the answer phone will pick up calls coming in after 8pm and the caller will be linked to a volunteer the following day.

Please stay safe and remember to follow the latest Government guidance.

Preston Parish Council

Bag It And Bin It

Dog fouling is not only unpleasant, it is also potentially harmful. Dog faeces may contain viruses, bacteria and parasites which if transferred to humans can cause serious illness, even blindness.

The Parish Council pays North Herts District Council £450 per annum to empty the dedicated dog waste bins. It is also permissible to use the general rubbish bins in the village to dispose of bagged dog waste so there is no excuse for the level of fouling which is taking place on paths, grassy areas eg Castlefield and in Wain Wood. Dog waste can also be put in purple bins.

Cricket has resumed at the Recreation Ground, which has a dog waste bin, and we would ask dog owners to be particularly vigilant in this area and in other areas where children play.

Village Signposts

Following instances of some being moved, all the signposts in the village now point in the correct directions and the Parish Council hope that this will continue.

Services at St. Martin’s Church

August Service Sidesman Reader
2nd9.30amMorning WorshipMalcolm LowleDi Blockley
   Romans 9:1-5, p.325   Gospel: Matthew 14:13-21
Intercessions: Hugh Reeves  
9th9.30amMorning WorshipRichard BlockleyHugh Reeves
   Romans 10:5-15, p.332  Gospel: Matthew 14:22-33
Intercessions: Alec Dickinson  
16th9.30amMorning WorshipLiz HunterLiz Hunter
   Romans 11:1-2a, 29-32 p. 337   Gospel: Matthew 15:21-28
Intercessions: Meta Reeves  
23rd9.30amMorning WorshipMalcolm LowleSue Griffiths
   Romans 12:1-8, p. 343   Gospel: Matthew 16:13-20
30th9.30amMorning WorshipMalcolm LowleRichard Blockley
   Romans 12:9-end, p. 349  Gospel: Matthew 16:21-end
Intercessions: Dawn Jenkins  
All services are at St. Martin's unless stated otherwise

Team Vicar of St Paul’s Walden with Preston:

Letter From Our Vicar

How often have you found yourself saying that we are living in very weird times – where bits of our lives don’t feel very real at all? Like wearing masks in shops, which hide an important part of our identity, or not embracing people except members of our family or household.

One of the things this weird time may have taught us (if we’re lucky) is the value of waiting. I don’t just mean waiting your turn in a queue, though that’s been quite a lesson in itself! I mean the whole business of waiting for the easing of restrictions, of waiting to go “back” to work, of waiting for sports or entertainments to resume, of waiting for business to pick up, of waiting until this pandemic is over.

Waiting can be tremendously difficult, and with the current crisis there’s not much we can do to hurry things along. Of course, there will come a time when (reasonably) normal life resumes, but I suspect it will be well into next year. So the practice of waiting will be something we need to cultivate and value for some time.

Part of the key to this may be to see beyond where we are now and to imagine ourselves coming out the other side – which is a form of hope, an important Christian virtue. The other key may be to do more of what we have all been doing over the last few months, which is to notice what is going on around us and within us – to be more open and observant.

The attitude of hopefulness on the one hand and attentive alertness on the other may be just those elements of the Christian life which will keep us afloat in this period of waiting.

With every blessing for the rest of the Summer


St Martin’s Church 120 Club Draw 2020/2021

The winners in the July draw in the 2020/21 120 Club (£30 each) were:

No. 11 Mr T R Justham
No. 27. Mrs M Cashin

Church Cleaning

Now the church is having regular services cleaning will take place on the first Tuesday of every month and the next will take place on 4 August.

Neighbourhood Watch

The number to contact at North Herts Police for all non-emergencies (including witnessing of fly-tipping) is 101 or 01707 354000.

For removal of fly tipping which has already occurred, call NHDC 01462 474000 or online at, then follow the links to Transport and Streets, Street Cleaning and Fly Tipping where there is a form to complete to report the details.

PC Johnie Streeter and PCSO Heather Burrows can be contacted regarding local community issues. Their contact details are as follows:

PC Johnie Streeter: 07525 905431 or 01438 757604

PCSO Heather Burrows: 07740 745168 or 01438 757604 or

In the event of an emergency or if you witness a crime taking place please call 999.

Reporting suspicious activity

Please report any suspicious activity or vehicles you may witness in the locality.

Call the police on the non-emergency number 101 or report it online by using the website and follow the links.

Hitchin Foodbank

Thank you to all who have donated so generously to the foodbank this past month, I have pinned a letter of thanks from Keith Catchpole (Liaison between Hitchin Foodbank & Hitchin Churches) on the village and church noticeboards.

The number of people helped by the Foodbank over the past month has doubled to nearly 1800.  Items urgently needed include:

Shampoo; Shower Gel; Deodorant; Toothpaste; Toilet Rolls; Size 5 & 6 Nappies; Sponge pudding; Tinned Rice Pudding; Tinned Custard.

Please ensure items are undamaged and in date. Donations can be deposited in the blue box in the garage at Lychgate House, Church Lane, or at Waitrose and Sainsbury’s.

The Red Lion

The Red Lion is open Tuesday to Sunday with tables spaced to comply with social distancing. Please phone 459585 to make a reservation. Take-away service continues to be available.

COVID-19 and the Newsletter

Producing our Parish Newsletter is a community initiative. Between us, we have taken steps to protect both the volunteers who produce and deliver as well as our readers. We have reduced the number of people involved in production – Howard edited the newsletter and e-mailed it as a Word file for printing; Rae and Wal printed, folded and sorted into delivery rounds this month; each delivery round was laid out separately for contact free collection.