Sunday, 31 December 2017

On reflection a colourful North Devon Coast and Country Chronicle

North Devon Coast and Country Chronicle, just some of the moments that caught my eye in 2017. Looking forward to another colourful year.
Here's to a Happy and 'Event'full 2018 everyone.

North Devon Focus Annual Chronicle 2017

Friday, 22 December 2017

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year

We are looking forward to bringing you more colourful news and events in 2018.
Thank you for visiting
Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year
North Devon Focus
Good Tidings from Bideford. Photo copyright B. Adams (All Rights Reserved)

Thursday, 21 December 2017

Has Santa’s beard been found in North Devon?

If Father Christmas appears beardless in our skies this Christmas then he could do worse than to visit North Devon to reclaim his famous white facial fuzz.

The discovery of a rare and weird looking fungus has led to it being nicknamed ‘Santa’s beard’ by amazed staff at the wildlife conservation charity Devon Wildlife Trust. The fungus, which is more usually known by its scientific name Hericium erinaceus and by other names including hedgehog fungus and lion’s mane fungus, has been spotted near the village of Thornbury, in North Devon. The fungus is rarely seen in the UK and it’s thought to be only the second sighting of it in Devon, and only the 215th time it has been recorded in the UK since 1923.

The white, football-sized mass was spotted growing from the trunk of a tree by Meg Galley-Taylor as she drove along a road close to her North Devon home. Meg said:

“People call me ‘Curious Meg’ so of course I spotted the fungus! It is large, white and very conspicuous. I had no idea what it was but I knew I had never seen anything like it before.”

After returning with binoculars and her camera, Meg set about researching the strange object, trying to find out just what it was. Meg said:
“In the end I posted the picture on-line and then I started to get a response. At that point I thought, oh wow, this is seriously rare.”
Meg also reported her sighting to leading conservation charity Devon Wildlife Trust. The Trust’s Steve Hussey said:
“This fungus is usually spotted in North American and Asia but has occurred in the South West of England only rarely before. We’re so pleased that Meg managed to spot it and tell us about it. Fungi come in wondrous and fascinating forms, but this is one of the most unusual we’ve ever seen.”
“Its weird shape and shaggy appearance, combined with the Christmas spirit here in the office, to make us wonder if the fungus could be part of the Santa Claus story? If the great man does appear without his beard this Christmas then we will know where to send him to look for it: it’ll be hanging on a tree in North Devon.”

Devon Wildlife Trust - Santa's Beard (Hedgehog Fungus) Photo copyright Meg Galley-Taylor (All Rights Reserved)
Santa's Beard (Hedgehog Fungus) Photo copyright Meg Galley-Taylor (All Rights Reserved

Tuesday, 19 December 2017

Make volunteering your new year's resolution. Can you help Marie Curie in Barnstaple or Ilfracombe?

Marie Curie provides support for people living with any terminal illness, and their families. We offer expert care, guidance and support to help them get the most from the time they have left. We are now looking for volunteers in the Barnstaple and Ilfracombe area. If you think you could spare them a few hours of your time, we would love to hear from you.
Collection Box Co-ordinators in Barnstaple or Ilfracombe
You’ll be amazed how much money is donated through collection boxes placed within the local community, and as a Collection Box Coordinator you will be responsible for your own network of boxes in your local area. Whether it’s a local shop or leisure centre, the more boxes you can place and collect, the more money you will raise for Marie Curie.
As a Collection Box Coordinator you will visit existing sites a few times a year to swap full tins for empty ones and use your local knowledge to seek new locations. You’ll also play a key part in the Great Daffodil Appeal in March, Marie Curie’s flagship fundraising campaign, by helping to place and collect daffodil boxes.
This role is flexible and varied, so you can really make it your own. You can organise your time so that your volunteering fits around your life - what could be better?
Collection Hosts in Barnstaple or Ilfracombe
Are you enthusiastic, sociable and good at dealing with money? Marie Curie are looking for people to help coordinate local store collections, particularly during the Great Daffodil Appeal in March. This would involve welcoming collectors on the day, providing them with the kit they need for the collection and counting and banking the income. The collection host will be asked to look after a few collections a year.
For more information please call Riona Houghton on 01179420129 or email
Volunteering: Can you help Marie Curie in Barnstaple or Ilfracombe?

ABOUT The Great Daffodil Appeal The Great Daffodil Appeal is Marie Curie’s biggest annual fundraising campaign and encourages everyone to give a donation in return for a daffodil pin during March. Money raised helps Marie Curie Nurses provide care and support to people living with a terminal illness and their families. Daffodil pins are available from our volunteers across the country and in Superdrug, Spar and Poundworld stores, and Wyevale Garden Centres. Morrisons supermarkets held fundraising collections on 10, 11 & 12 March across all of their 490 stores. For more information call 0800 304 7025 or visit
*Calls are free from landlines and mobile phones. Your call may be recorded for quality and training purposes.

ABOUT Marie Curie – care and support through terminal illness - Marie Curie is the UK’s leading charity for people with any terminal illness. The charity helps people living with a terminal illness and their families make the most of the time they have together by delivering expert hands-on care, emotional support, research and guidance. Marie Curie employs more than 2,700 nurses, doctors and other healthcare professionals, and with its nine hospices around the UK, is the largest provider of hospice beds outside the NHS.
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