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Montgomery canal basin in Pant

New film showcases Montgomery Canal restoration

After months of filming on the Montgomery Canal, Canal and River Trust are delighted to release “Life on the Monty”, a short film that celebrates the heritage, wildlife and people who make this beautiful canal so special.

Montgomery Canal in Pant - Pant.today

The Montgomery Canal still needs restoration, this water is only from the rain.

The film also includes archive footage of the original restoration from 1969, to celebrate the role of volunteers in its resurrection, and a chance to see The Prince of Wales re-opening the canal at Welshpool.

Sylvia Edwards, Montgomery Canal Community Development Officer, says: “The making of the film brought together various generations who wanted to tell the wider world how special this canal is: its unique environment, the amazing work done by past and current volunteers, the fun that it provides to young people and their families, and how everyone can enjoy its beautiful and peaceful surroundings.

“You can watch the Life on the Monty trailer at https://canalrivertrust.org.uk/montgomery, where you will also find a link to the film itself. Feel free to click on the heart-shape button, top right hand side, to “ like it”, and don’t forget to share it with your networks.”

Life on the Monty was funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund as part of the restoration of the Montgomery canal in Shropshire.

If you would like to support the wider restoration effort of the Montgomery canal, go to http://restorethemontgomerycanal.uk.

Pant Autumn Bazaar 2017

Pant Autumn Bazaar Success

This year’s Pant Autumn Bazaar took place on Saturday 6th October in Pant Memorial Hall and was a great success, bringing the community together and raising over £570 for the upkeep of the hall, which is a registered charity.

Pant Autumn Bazaar 2017

The bazaar, now in its fourth year, was held between 2pm and 4pm and saw more visitors than ever. It featured stalls from a number of local organisations and charities, as well as refreshments and an opportunity to see the facilities offered in the Hall.

For the first time at this year’s bazaar, the hall was selling hot snacks fresh from its newly installed electric oven – a selling point for anyone looking to hire the hall for a party or event.

There was also a bring-a-photo exhibition and those attending were invited to bring along a photo or two on the theme of ‘local history and people’. The aim was to showcase the village and those who live there to create a fascinating display for everyone to enjoy.

Once again, there was a wide selection of local craft-makers and businesses offering unique and bespoke products, gifts and cards. As well as a plant stall and local produce, such as cakes, pumpkins, honey and preserves, there were complementary therapies on offer.

The hall itself was running a tombola and bargain bookstall, as well as selling bric-a-brac, to help raise funds. Proceeds from the sale of hot snacks, teas, coffees and cake go towards the upkeep of Pant Memorial Hall, which is a registered charity and a valuable asset for the community.

Shaun Fisher, Hall Treasurer, said: “We would like to thank everyone who came along on the day for making this year’s bazaar the biggest and best yet. We would also like to thank the local businesses that donated prizes, the stallholders who filled the hall and of course the hard-working volunteers who made it all happen. We were delighted with the amount of money raised and we look forward to building on this success in 2019.”

To find out more about Pant Memorial Hall and to hire it, please visit www.pantmemorialhall.org.uk or have a look at their Facebook page @PantMemorialHall.

Works to Pant Memorial Hall

New hallway coming to Pant Memorial Hall

Work is taking place at Pant Memorial Hall to remove the wooden flooring in the entrance hall and replace it with a solid floor.

Pant Memorial Hall, Pant, Shropshire

Thanks to the award of a Big Lottery Fund grant of £9,500, work on the hallway, as well as a new wheelchair-accessible ramp from the fire exit, can now start, with the balance of the costs being met from hall funds.

The floor in the entrance hall and two store rooms will be removed and the void filled in with hardcore and concrete with a layer of insulation, which should help keep the entrance to the hall warmer in the winter.

During the works – from Monday 20th August to Friday 7th September – the hall is completely closed, with no public access.

After that date, it is possible that there will a period when the hallway is untiled, as the concrete needs time to dry out completely before tiling can start.

Over the past couple of years or so, the committee at the hall have been focusing on investing in the hall to ensure it remains a well-maintained space for villagers to hold and attend events. As well as the hallway improvements and fire escape access for disabled people, recent work has included updating the emergency lighting and installing a fire alarm.

According to Shaun Fisher, Treasurer at the hall, there are plans to further update the hall, subject to finance, including repainting and improving the bar area.

“As a community asset, it is important that we regularly invest in the hall to ensure it meets the needs of the community,” he said.

Villagers will have a chance to see the progress of the hallway refurbishment at this year’s Pant Autumn Bazaar which takes place in the hall on Saturday 6th October from 2 – 4pm.

Pant Autumn Bazaar 2016

It’s summer, but not too early to think about Pant Autumn Bazaar!

It might be hot at the moment, but it’s time to start thinking about Pant Autumn Bazaar.

Pant Autumn Bazaar 2016Yes, we know it is only just summer, but volunteers are already being sought to build on the success of last year’s Pant Autumn Bazaar.

Organised by Pant Memorial Hall, the Bazaar is now in it’s fourth year and aims to bring local people together in the village hall while raising vital funds for the upkeep of the hall.

Everyone in the village is welcome to become part of the organising group for the Bazaar – you don’t need to be a regular hall user – so that all views and ideas are represented.

The first meeting will be held in Pant Memorial Hall at 7pm on Tuesday 24th July and new ideas for activities during the Bazaar will be most welcome.

In previous years, the Bazaar – which takes place on the first Saturday afternoon in October – has featured a range of local stalls selling items from local honey to soap and plants, a tombola to raise funds for the hall and tea and cake. This year, the hall committee is keen that villagers let them know of any suggestions that will improve the event further.

Said Shaun Fisher, treasurer at the hall: “Over the past couple of years we have been investing in the hall to improve it for villagers and the Autumn Bazaar is a major fundraising activity that helps us keep it going. We are looking forward to putting on another successful event and to welcoming as many villagers as possible.”

If you want to attend the planning meeting, there’s no need to book, just turn up to find out more and see how you can contribute.

Once plans for the Bazaar have been finalised, you will be able to find details on the Pant Today website as well as at www.pantmemorialhall.org.uk.

Works to Pant Memorial Hall

Pant Memorial Hall celebrates £9,500 in National Lottery funding

Pant Memorial Hall has received a £9,500 grant from the National Lottery for essential maintenance work and to improve disabled access.

Works to Pant Memorial Hall

The latest round of National Lottery funding, which has just been announced, sees over 2,300 community projects across the UK receiving a share of over £45 million. The money, raised by players for good causes, is being distributed by the Big Lottery Fund, the largest funder of community activity in the UK.

Pant Memorial Hall is our popular village hall which also serves as the village war memorial, built as it was to commemorate the service and sacrifice of those who did not return in World War One. It is a registered charity run by volunteers for the community.

The funding will be used by the hall to help pay for the refurbishment of the entrance hallway. The floor of the entrance hall, which has been in place for over 30 years, is affected by woodworm and needs to be completely replaced. Part of the money will also be used to improve disabled access to the hall by building a ramp from one of the fire exits.Big Lottery Fund logo

Shaun Fisher, Treasurer of Pant Memorial Hall, said: “This is great news for the village! Pant Memorial Hall has served the community of Pant for almost 100 years and we’re now at the stage where some major repair work needs to be done to the hallway. The National Lottery funding will help us to pay for this major undertaking and will also enable us to improve disabled access.

“The hall is a vital asset for the community offering a wide range of classes to local people as well as providing a popular venue for parties and get-togethers. The National Lottery funding will, we hope, help us to carry on for many more years.”

James Harcourt, England Grant Making Director at the Big Lottery Fund, said: “Whether in a village, town or city, National Lottery funding is helping to make a difference, bringing communities together to help people lead happier and healthier lives.”

To find out about the Big Lottery Fund and the latest round of National Lottery funding, click here. For more about Pant Memorial Hall visit www.pantmemorialhall.org.uk.

Horse drawn canal boat

Welshpool event focuses on Montgomery Canal

The Canal & River Trust charity is organising a weekend of fun waterway activities at Welshpool Wharf, as part of the Welshpool Transport Festival on 23-24 June.

Horse drawn canal boatAlthough taking place in Welshpool, the event is open to all and is taking place alongside a music festival – Music for the Monty – which is seeking to raise funds for and publicity about the restoration of the section of canal through Pant to Llanymynech.

Free canoeing and coracle taster sessions will be on offer on the Saturday (10am-5pm) and paddle boarding taster sessions on the Sunday (10am-2pm). Narrowboat trips, also free courtesy of the Heulwen Trust, will be available throughout the weekend.

These activities and other community events are being promoted by the Canal & River Trust, which manages 2,000 miles of the nation’s waterways, as part of the Heritage Lottery-funded project to restore the Montgomery Canal.

Music will keep everything swinging along throughout the weekend and a special charity concert, in aid of the Montgomery Canal restoration, will be held on Saturday night in the Assembly Room at Welshpool Town Hall. Advance tickets at the special price of £8.00 each are available through the website http://restorethemontgomerycanal.uk/tickets.html or £10 on the door.

CanoeingAlso, on both days will be a rare opportunity to enjoy a horse-drawn boat trip along this section of the Montgomery Canal. For the first time in years, this unique mode of transport will take visitors along the Welsh stretch of the waterway. Trips are heavily subsidised and cost only £2 per person. Tickets are available on the day from the bottom of Church Street Car Park near the canalside – postcode SY21 7DD.

Sylvia Edwards, Montgomery Canal community development officer with the Trust, explained: “This special weekend offers visitors a marvellous chance to try out a range of exciting activities on water. Research proves people feel happier and healthier by water so it’s a great event for introducing visitors and local residents to opportunities for enjoying leisure time on the beautiful waterway.

“For people with a more competitive streak, we are hosting a coracle relay race at 2pm on the Saturday. This is free to enter. No previous experience is necessary as participants will have chance to practise in the morning up to midday. We hope lots of supporters will come down for the race to cheer on the competitors.”

Teams of four need to have registered their coracle race entry by 21 June by emailing Sylvia.Edwards@canalrivertrust.org.uk or calling 07787 508 635.

This weekend of community activities are part of a much larger HLF-funded £4 million project which involves the creation of a new three-hectare wildlife habitat within Aston Locks Nature Reserve and navigation restored to 1¼ miles of the canal, from Maesbury to Crickheath.

A dedicated turning point for narrowboats, known as a ‘winding hole’, is also being created, enabling boats to return to the area for the first time since 1936 when the canal was closed. The project includes access improvements to the canal and nearly five miles of towpath upgraded. The Canal & River Trust works with 15 partner organisations which make up the Montgomery Canal Partnership. The Partnership aims to restore the canal fully within the next decade as a haven for people and nature.

For more information about the Montgomery Canal restoration why not visit www.restorethemontgomerycanal.uk.

Photo credit: Cracker photo by Dave Barker at Bywater Cruises.

Works to Pant Memorial Hall

Pant Armistice artwork plans to be revealed

Pant residents are being urged to have their say on plans for a new sculpture on Pant Memorial Hall which is being commissioned to commemorate the 100th Anniversary of the Armistice and the end of the First World War.

Pant Memorial Hall is working with artist Neil Dalrymple to design the memorial artwork.

In March, Neil was in Pant to find out about the local area and spoke to residents to find out what they would like to see in a sculpture.

Artwork plans for Pant Memorial Hall - Neil Dalrymple

Following this consultation, Neil has now drawn up a design for the sculpture and will be visiting Pant Memorial Hall again to present his proposals to local residents.

The new artwork will create a permanent visual memorial on the outside of the hall to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the Armistice. This will allow passers-by to find out about the hall’s role as a war memorial, even without going inside.

Speaking about the artwork Neil said: “The mural will be made as a Ceramic Stoneware Sculptural Relief which will give it texture and definition and features images from Pant and the local area.

“Local residents were keen that the sculpture was a celebration of the area, rather than one that depicted war. I am looking forward to meeting residents to hear their feedback about these initial designs.”

Pant Memorial Hall will be looking to raise funds for the new artwork through grants, local business support and individual donations, so if you can help, please get in touch on 07940 108624.

Pant Memorial Hall was set up after the First World War to be a memorial to the suffering endured by soldiers and civilians and now plays a central part in the life of the village.

Residents who would like to see the designs for the artwork or who would like to have their say about the designs, can come along to Pant Pop-Up Café on Sunday 20th May in Pant Memorial Hall between 2.30 and 4pm.


Neil Dalrymple - ceramic sculpture for Pant Memorial Hall

Ceramic sculpture for Pant Memorial Hall moves closer

Plans to create a brand new ceramic sculpture for Pant Memorial Hall took a step forward following a recent meeting at the hall.

Pant residents met to discuss the plans for the artwork and Ruthin-based sculptor Neil Dalrymple outlined the type of sculpture he could envisage for the hall.

Artwork plans for Pant Memorial Hall - Neil Dalrymple

Neil spent an afternoon in Pant and Llanymynech before the meeting to get a feel for the area and the type of thing that could be included in the new artwork.

At the meeting – held following the AGM of Pant Memorial Hall – local residents outlined their thoughts for what could appear in the artwork. The overall feeling was that this was a very worthwhile project and would not only add to the look of the Memorial Hall but would also be a fitting memorial to mark 100 years since the Armistice at the end of the First World War.

Neil has undertaken similar commissions in the past, including a ceramic war memorial for the community at Ffrith, in Flintshire.

Pant’s Memorial Hall was set up after the First World War to be a memorial to the suffering endured by soldiers and civilians and now plays a central part in the life of the village.

Due to issues of woodworm in the entrance hall, work is planned to update the front of Pant Memorial Hall in the next 12 months and the addition of a sculpture beside the entrance hall could take place at the same time, resulting in a striking new entrance to the hall.

Speaking after the meeting, Shaun Fisher, one of the hall committee members, said: “Tonight’s meeting was very positive and residents expressed their views about what sort of memorial they would like to see.

“Essentially, the feeling of the meeting was that the memorial should be positive and reflect the environment around Pant including its natural and industrial history.

“Knowing the type of artworks Neil has produced in the past, we are confident that, subject to raising the necessary funds, we can commission a stunning piece of work which will be an asset to the community.”

The cost of the project will be around £4,000 and Pant Memorial Hall is seeking support from local people to raise the funds, as well as grants and sponsorship from local businesses.

Speaking about the commission Neil said: “I had been through Pant in the past and hadn’t realised the breadth of local history and its wildlife. One of my earliest memories is of seeing Llanymynech Rocks one evening lit up by the sun and I am sure that will be a feature in our new artwork.”

If you could pledge to help raise the target of £4,000 or could help in any other way, please contact the Hall’s secretary on secretary@pantmemorialhall.org.uk.

Cross Guns Inn, Pant, Shropshire

Guide Dog named thanks to Cross Guns quiz goers

Regulars at the Cross Guns Inn in Pant have now raised enough money through their monthly quiz to name a guide dog.

Guide Dogs logo

At the quiz on 19 January, locals at the pub decided on a name for ‘their’ puppy. After a number of possible names were put forward by the teams at the quiz, a show of hands at the full pub led to the name being chosen as Dougal.

Chris and Jayne Richards have been organising the monthly pub quiz at the Cross Guns for the past four years and have seen the popularity increasing. Each month they raise around £80-100 and they have now collected £2,500 for Guide Dogs.

Said Chris: “We are really glad that the quiz has become so popular with villagers over the past few years and it’s a real milestone being able to name our first dog – Dougal.”

But the work doesn’t stop there, Chris and Jayne are carrying on fundraising for Guide Dogs and the next quiz date is already in the calendar – 23rd February 2018 at 8pm.

Fundraising has already started for the next dog!

Works to Pant Memorial Hall

Latest news from Pant Memorial Hall

Pant Memorial Hall is a key part of the local community. Here Helen, secretary to the committee that manages the hall, highlights some of the current issues.


We host everything from tango classes to digeridoo sessions, children’s birthday parties to kids’ dance. The hall welcomes anything that fits inside and doesn’t scare the neighbours. We have lots of bookings in the diary and are always happy to take new ones.

The two big changes are the removal of the coin meters for heating, and the replacement of our kettles with a state of the art boiling water tap. Our hire cost remains one of the cheapest around.

Latest news from Pant Memorial Hall - tea and coffee Facilities at Pant Memorial HallMeanwhile we’ve done a lot of decluttering, got our hiring forms and health and safety procedures up to date and are working on some smart new signs. The Facebook page is now active and the website is up to date.

The big one for 2018 is to revamp the entrance lobby to make it warmer and smarter. This will need fundraising and the right expertise, it will be quite a job.

Yes please! The hall is run entirely by volunteers, many of whom have been involved for decades –they’ve more than done their bit and it is time for reinforcements.

Village halls work best with a good cross-section of the community on the committee. We are (and want to be) a wide mix of ages and backgrounds, both long-time locals and new arrivals. There are four evening committee meetings a year (including the AGM). You can do as much or as little as you want, it all helps.

As well as general committee members, we need a new booking secretary, to liaise with our users and manage the hall diary. The committee chair and vice-chair are also retiring at the AGM, so new incumbents will be needed for these positions.

You’ll use your skills and learn new ones, while keeping this vital village asset in good form. We’re a lively, friendly and varied bunch – come along and meet us so we can prove it! New members will be elected at the AGM on 15th March 2018, so there’s plenty of time to find out what you need to know. Please get in touch!

More information on www.pantmemorialhall.org.uk/get-involved, call 07913 565708 or email secretary@pantmemorialhall.org.uk

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Pant.Today is published by Ethos public relations Ltd. The site is designed to be an asset for the community in the village of Pant in Shropshire as well as visitors and others.

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