LETTERS: Lions president, a choir returns, a better word for travellers and query over players' home

New president for March Lions

Outgoing Lions Club President, Lion Derek Rutter [Right], hands over his chain of office to the clubs new President, Lion Alexander Groome [Left] - Credit: March Lions

Lions get new president – and it's their youngest ever 

March Lions Club president Derek Rutter, handed over his chain of office to the new president Alexander Groome. 

Alexander is the youngest president in over 40 years of March Lions Club.  

March Lions Club is a voluntary organisation raising money to support local and national charities through our gala, Santa’s Sleigh and other events.  

We currently meet on the 2nd Wednesday of the month at March Town Hall.  

If you interested in helping the club or would like more information please contact our club secretary Lion Jenny Webb on 01354 650855 or email revdjennywebb@btinternet.com.  


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Club press officer 

Songs in the Park! 

MADAOS choir

West End Park, March on Sunday 29th August, where MADAOS will be performing for the first time since 2019. - Credit: MADAOS

Come along to West End Park, March on Sunday 29th August, where MADAOS will be performing for the first time since 2019.  

The concert will be from 2pm until 4pm, and you will enjoy songs from the shows and popular tunes.  

If the weather is good, why not bring a picnic and some folding chairs and spend a happy afternoon listening to some lovely singing 


Return of the Can't Sing choir

March Can’t Sing Choir invite existing members and new friends to attend our first indoor singing session on the evening of Wednesday 1st September 2021.

The choir, formed in 2016, has been ‘asleep’ throughout the Covid-19 pandemic but can now re-start with fun and friendship, and the health-giving benefits of community singing.  

Sessions will be held every Wednesday evening in Trinity Church, High Street, March.  

Entry is by the side door from 6.15pm. Warm-up exercises and singing starts from 6.30pm – finishing at 8.30pm.  

We are a ‘pay-as-you-go’ choir, with weekly subs of £4.00 per head. We don’t have auditions for new starters, and we don’t read music.  

There’s no joining fee, as we meet together to sing for the fun of it. We meet for 48 weeks of the year, not just in term-time.  

While we hope that you are fully vaccinated, we shall not be asking for proof. However, please do not attend if you feel unwell or have had a C-19 contact.  

Masks can be worn if you choose, however we would prefer you do wear one while entering and leaving the building.  

We cannot for now, use the kitchen due to Covid-19 health restrictions. Please bring your own drink with you. 

If you are new to the choir, please visit our website to get a good idea of who we are, and what we do. www.marchcantsingchoir.co.uk or call Val (website) or check our Facebook page.  

We look forward to meeting old friends and making new ones.  

Be welcome everyone. 


Secretary, March Can’t Sing Choir. 

Hockey club AGM  

Wisbech Town Hockey Club is holding its AGM on August 25th.  

It will be a 7pm for a 7.30pm start at the club house.  

Many thanks  


Free entry to returning fete

There will be a a fete and market place at Walpole St Peter Church (PE14 7NS) on 4th and 5th September.  

A huge range of market stalls in the church and marquees with craft, gifts, cakes, books, bric-a-brac, tombola, games and much more.  

Refreshments, entertainment and a BBQ.  Open 10am – 4pm, free entry and free parking as we celebrate 1,000 years of recorded worship on the church site. 


Events and publicity volunteer- 

Songs in the Park! 

Come along to West End Park, March on Sunday 29th August, where MADAOS will be performing for the first time since 2019.  

The concert will be from 2pm until 4pm, and you will enjoy songs from the shows and popular tunes.  

If the weather is good, why not bring a picnic and some folding chairs and spend a happy afternoon listening to some lovely singing 


National Day for women  

Would it be possible to call for a ‘National Day’ for women across the world to wear the Burqa as a sign of solidarity with the women of Afghanistan?  



Here are some hospital facts

Operations continue to take place for all our patients at Hinchingbrooke Hospital, and we are following expert advice to manage our estate, checking and surveying our buildings regularly and completing any maintenance as it’s needed. 

We have a rolling programme of surveys and mitigations with monthly reporting to the Trust board, the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Integrated Care System and into the national programme team. 

I also meet regularly with the CEOs of the other RAAC affected hospitals to share learning.  

We have been given £13m this year to support this piece of estates work, including carrying out annual surveys and remedial and mitigation maintenance.  

The Trust is currently planning to submit an expression of interest in the additional new hospital scheme under the Health Infrastructure Plan.  

The Trust has seven operating theatres in its main building at Hinchingbrooke Hospital; patients over 120kg are still receiving their surgery with us.  

There have been no requirements to move patients for surgery from Hinchingbrooke and we are managing our surgical capacity successfully.  

The BBC published a piece of information this week saying that 1,700 operations had been affected – this was not factually accurate and has now been removed from the article.  

In our annual plan we referred to specific actions to be taken if our theatres at Hinchingbrooke were discovered to need immediate remedial work; the condition of the RAAC panels in our theatres have been reviewed and as a result we have not enacted the vast majority of elements from this plan. 


Chief Executive 

North West Anglia NHS Foundation Trust 

Count us into the anger over centre 

March Community Centre

March Community Centre - Credit: John Elworthy

Having read all about the changes to March Community Centre it seems that the redesign has rendered it unsuitable for March Amateur Dramatic and Operatic Society (MADAOS) and March Dog Training Club.  

The Anglian Players will probably be affected by the same changes.  

No doubt, including performance audiences, there was a much larger proportion of the community using the centre than the new classes will generate. 

How is the new centre going to make ends meet?  

Presumably all of the £400k grant has been spent or has a proportion been invested to keep it going and in good condition? 

Were any of the various users of the facility asked about their needs or made aware of what was proposed? Clearly not!  

March has lost all of its useful public halls over the years. The old Grammar School gym had become a very good substitute and that has clearly now gone as well. 

It was very sad to read the appeals by Christine Kaye from the Dog Training Club and Barbara Pepper from MADAOS for suitable facilities that they can afford. 

Christine Kaye says only guide dogs will be allowed in the centre. None of the dogs ever went in the main building they were only in the old Fives Court which is completely separate. 

It is good to know it will be Covid safe, it certainly will be as there will be very few people attending. 


‘You need a better word than travellers’ 

I'm writing to complain about articles regarding travellers. 

Racism against the GRT community seems to be the last publicly acceptable form of racism.  

Your coverage of issues regarding travellers is full of stereotyping and conjecture, and is extremely narrow in its perspective.  

The council's provision for travellers is woefully inadequate - there are no official sites within Cambridge and very few in the surrounding area. 

The sentence in your online article about Ely rugby club said: "The travellers who turned up are thought to be some of those displaced from other illegal encampments across east Cambridgeshire in recent days" is revealing. 

There are almost no 'acceptable' places for travellers to stop so of course if they are turned out of one location, they turn up in another!   

Complaints are made that they leave litter, but there is no provision for refuse to be collected from travelling communities.   

Travellers are persecuted by the media and the community wherever they go, and if they feel disenfranchised and hostile to the community in return that is really no surprise.   

Their traditional way of life is also about to be criminalised by the Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Bill in September.  

I would strongly urge you to reassess the tone and content of your coverage of issues regarding travellers - where are the voices of the GRT community for instance?   

Would any other group be talked about in this way without the right of reply?  

As an experiment, perhaps take one of your articles and replace 'travellers' with another ethnic minority group and see if you would still be willing to publish it... 


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