GMS Notes No32. February 2011

After just two months of existence the Great Mongeham website seems to get quite a few “hits”. I try to add something new each week, so it is worthwhile having a look from time to time to see what’s new.

Wildflower of the Month 




Annual meadow grass (Poa annua) is one of the weeds in the article last month. It flowers more or less continuously through the year and produces copious amounts of seed. That is no wonder when you consider the flower.alt

Each one of the little nodding heads is a  spikelet and each spikelet is made up of four or five tiny flowers called florets, each producing a single seed. Insects are not required for pollination as the anthers hang outside the flower to catch the wind. The entire lifecycle can be completed in six weeks, meaning several generations can be produced each year. This explains its rapid spread on freshly dug ground.




Last Month’s Meeting

altOur opening meeting of the New Year was as much fun as last year. Alex and Pam came up trumps with a skittle alley, shove ‘apenny and many more. In fact everyone had such a good time eating, drinking and playing that no-one remembered to take a photo, so I have had to use one from last year. Now that John Bowsher is chairman we need a new official photographer.

altAlex and Pam also brought along a print of Peter Breugel’s Children’s Games. A number of us spent a while poring over it, seeing games we remembered from our own childhood: but sadly, in an age dominated by games consoles, they are no longer played. The other two  illustrations are details taken from the print.


Many of us can remember games such as marbles, leapfrog, piggyback fights and stilt walking. There are others I remember playing but have forgotten what they were called. I suppose change is inevitable, but it seems a pity that games which have been traditional for so many centuries in so many countries should now be lost to future generations.



February Meetingalt

Garibaldi was a charismatic nineteenth century Italian whose greatest claim to fame was the unification of Italy and liberation from the Austrian Empire. Michael Burrows will tell us about Garibaldi, whose name is now only remembered by us as a biscuit, but to the Italians he he is remembered for his leadership in freeing Italy from the control of the Austrian Empire. His was a colourful life, with adventures on two continents and the talk should be fascinating.


The Society Website

altThe Great Mongeham Society website continues to go from strength to strength, and if you put “Great Mongeham” into the Google search it pops up in third place on the first page.

I am trying to add a new chapter to the village history each month, so it is worthwhile keeping a check. I also put the GMS Notes onto the News section of the website. I remove the historical article at the end because when I have finished the Village History (which I am going to take up to the seventeenth or early eighteenth century) I want to do another historical section based on the articles I have written about houses in the village.




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