You may remember I was poorly last week, so didn’t do the "Girls About Town"  radio programme, but was feeling much better today, so off I went to meet up with Nichola, who was presenting the programme because Jo was away today looking after her Mum, and Clare.  Anne Norman was our guest today and she was telling us about the new initiative starting soon under the "Brighter Futures" banner.  The first photograph in my collage shows Nichola, Clare, Anne and me.

"Brighter Futures" is the charity for Great Western Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust which includes Great Western Hospital and community health sites in Swindon and the new project is either to knit or crochet 6 inch squares to be made into blankets for patients on the End of Life pathway in Great Western Hospital.  It all sounds very exciting and the first meeting will be held at the GWH tomorrow lunchtime.  Being knitters ourselves, Clare and I were very interested and thought this was a lovely idea.  The blankets will be given to patients and when that person eventually dies, the blanket can either be taken by the person’s relatives as a memento or recycled for someone else to use.  The aim of "Brighter Futures" is to have completed 500 blankets in the first year - and judging by the interest so far, they will do it.

When I got home, the sun was still shining, so Mr. HCB and I quickly had some lunch before going out for a walk - it was too good a chance to miss!  We walked down towards Coate Water and were amazed to see the beautiful blossom already out on a tree along the lane near the Richard Jefferies Museum - another lady was also taking a photograph, but said she didn’t know what tree it was, and neither did we, but it was very unusual to see it flowering so early in the year.

We then saw the young man in the bottom left of my collage, whose name I found out was Lennox, in the garden of the museum, lighting a bonfire - and fanning it rapidly to keep it going as he said the wood was very wet.  It was very smoky, but we didn’t mind that lovely outdoor, woody smell - in fact, it was quite pleasant.  We passed the time of day with him and then went on with our walk.

Much further down the lane, where there are a lot of new houses, we could see a very “posh” fence and debated what was being built to have such a good fence around it.  We both thought it might be a school, so when we saw a man in a high-viz jacket coming out of the building site, I decided to ask him - well, I work on the premise, if you don’t ask, you don’t find out!

He was an extremely personable fellow and told us his name was Paul Goodfellow and that he was the Site Manager.  He told us that the building was, in fact, the new Primary School for Badbury Park.  He said that the ethos of ISG, their construction company, was to make as little noise and fuss as possible, bearing in mind that there were people living nearby, protect the environment and to actively encourage wildlife.  He said they were trying to make the site look as attractive as possible, which was evident from the planters inside the compound, that had bulbs and various plants in them.  Paul mentioned that his office would soon be finished and we were welcome to come at any time and have a cup of tea with him and to ask any questions we may have - what a lovely man!

Paul told us that he came originally from Exeter but now lived in Bristol - quite near the cricket ground - well as you can imagine, it didn’t take long before Mr. HCB was chatting about cricket to him.  In fact, it transpired that Paul’s wife’s cousin, Chris Dent, is the Captain of the Gloucester County Cricket Team, the one Mr. HCB supports.  Paul said he went to the international matches, but Mr. HCB said it was a nightmare parking, so he didn’t bother - I suggested that perhaps Mr. HCB could park on Paul’s drive, and he said that would be fine by him!  I asked if I could take his photograph - well Mr. HCB might need to remember what he looks like if he parks on his drive!

We carried on walking and because we were passing by the home of our friends, Keith and Sue, decided to knock on their door - and were invited in for a cuppa.  We stayed for over an hour, had a lovely chat with them and then walked home - I’m pleased to say I have done almost 9,000 steps, which is good for me.

What a lovely day - it was so lovely to meet such wonderful people and the sunshine was a bonus.  

“Give every day the chance
     to become the most 
          beautiful day
               of your life.”
Mark Twain

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