Now for Part 2 of my 50 things to like about the Chandler’s Ford area.
26. David’s Fish Bar
It is a family tradition to have a takeaway and watch a movie on a Friday night. We visit David’s Fish Bar (who regularly offer fish and chip suppers as prizes for various charities raising funds. A delicious prize!).
27. St. Boniface’s Church and The Methodist Church
They hold a wide range of activities and host groups as well as being places of worship. Blood donation now takes place at St. Boniface’s Church. The Methodist Church hosts the MDG Players and has a great Mums and Tots group and playgroup. While it has been years since I needed to use the latter for my son, they were great groups.
I also like seeing the slogans outside the front of the Methodist Church, many of which are amusing or make me think especially when I read these while in the queue at David’s Fish Bar opposite!).
28. Hiltingbury Post Office
The people running it are lovely and the Post Office really is an asset to the community. (It is also very useful for being able to withdraw money when the ATM on the wall at Tescos is out of action either because it needs refilling or because some twit has tried to attack it again and put it out of operation).
29. Smaller supermarkets
There is a nice range of smaller supermarkets from the Tesco Express at Hiltingbury to the Spar shop at the bottom of Hursley Road. I like the smaller convenience stores.
30. Pavement walks
During the winter months when it is difficult to use some of the early evening country walks with my dog due to lack of light, there are plenty of pleasant pavement walks in the Hiltingbury area. Okay they can’t compare with the country walks, nothing can, but these pavement routes still make for a nice walk. At Christmas time I enjoyed seeing the wonderful lights.
31. Local writing
Having a good number of local writers and poets. I know I’m biased but I think having a literature “scene” reflects well on the area.
I was given a quill biro for my 50th. It writes beautifully. (I was told by a very good friend they wanted to get something suitable for a “writer who is old”. The great thing is their 50th birthday is coming up later this year so I have time to think of a suitable gift and response in return!).
32. War Memorial
The war memorial at St. Boniface’s is simple but touching.
33. Hursley Road Oak Trees
The massive oak trees on Hursley Road are a great sight. It is a pity with trees you can’t be certain of their age until you chop them down! I mention the oaks separately from trees in general as I feel the oaks are a great “avenue” in themselves and are literally part of the area’s history (I’ve seen pictures of them in Barbara Hillier’s local history books and the oaks near me were ancient back in the early 20th century when the pictures were taken!).
34. Making Friends and Dog Walking
Making more friends in the area thanks to owning a dog. I’ve made more friends since having my first dog, Gracie, in 1999 than in the previous years living in Chandler’s Ford altogether. And it is thanks to one dog walking friend, Richard Hardie, who told me about Chandler’s Ford Today that I am now blogging on this site. It just goes to show people are friendly in our area. It just sometimes needs something like having a dog to discover that!
35. Chandler’s Ford Today
Chandler’s Ford Today of course for giving writers a voice, for giving good community warnings and being one way of bringing the community together. It is great to know what else is going on in our area. Does anyone know if there is an “editor blushes” social media icon I could use here? (Will be interesting to see if Janet cuts this!).
36. Scout Parade
The annual St. George’s Day Scout Parade always looks good and much credit must go to all those who lead the Scouts in our area. It was a pleasure to meet and talk with Lyn Derbyshire and share her memories, especially of The Gang Show, on CFT.
37. Wooded Areas
Having nice little odd spots of woodland and green areas such as the small square of copse at the bottom of Forest Road and Beech Road. I like to think of these as a kind of wooded oasis. My dog just loves these sorts of areas especially after a long pavement walk.
The drivers are helpful and many is the time I’ve seen them stop at a more convenient location for those who are grateful for that kind of assistance. So next time the bus is late it might not be just due to traffic on Leigh Road (which if I was writing a piece about 50 things I dislike would be high up on that list – so would the potholes!). Though I must admit I would like the service from Hiltingbury to Fryern restored on Saturdays.
39. Sixth Form Colleges
Easy access to good sixth form colleges (and having a choice) such as Barton Peveril Sixth Form College (former college of Colin Firth of Pride and Prejudice and The King’s Speech fame) and Eastleigh College.
40. Churches Together in Chandler’s Ford
Churches Together in Chandler’s Ford – I like seeing churches work together, share resources and show our local area that the differences between us are minor ones and what unites us is far more important.
41. One Community
One Community based in Eastleigh but responsible for Dial-a-Ride and Shopmobility amongst other things, all excellent support ideas.
42. Eastleigh Museum
Eastleigh Museum is a little gem at the heart of Eastleigh and easy to get to from Chandler’s Ford. Well worth visiting.
43. Chandler’s Ford Good Neighbours
Chandler’s Ford Good Neighbours – Great idea, there is also a group at Eastleigh.
44. Local Charity Shops
Having our own local charity shops to support (absolutely nothing wrong with supporting the ones at Eastleigh but it is nice to have some right on our doorstep (The Hospice Shop, Age UK, Marie Curie and Wessex Cancer Trust).
45. Vet surgeries
From a pet owner’s point of view it is useful to have a good choice of vet surgeries to use. (If my border collie were able to express a viewpoint, she would not be putting this one in the list!).
46. Local coffee shops
Coffee shops – again like the charity shops we have our own right on our doorstep though I was sorry Asante closed.
47. Easy access to Eastleigh
Being so close to Eastleigh – useful for the shops we don’t have at Fryern. Lakeside Country Park is also nice.
48. Easy access to Romsey
Being so close to Romsey (the train journey from Chandler’s Ford to Romsey may be short but the country it goes through is nice. And there’s no way of doing the same journey quicker by road either). Easy access to the Abbey, The Rapids and Romsey Town Centre. My late in-laws originally hailed from Romsey and there are still family connections there. The white house next door to the Plaza Theatre used to be the Symes’ family home.
49. Easy access to Southampton
It is also easy enough to leave the car at home and go into Southampton by train for the bigger stores, to see Saints play, for the Mayflower Theatre and so on. I use the train service all year but this aspect of it is especially useful at Christmas for present shopping. I like the fact the railway station car park is free for rail users. That is the way to get people out of their cars I feel.
50. Having good neighbours
Having good neighbours. Am blessed with mine on both sides and I’ve not always been able to say this. You good people know who you are!
Now I have 10 years to think of another 10 things to like before my next milestone birthday.
Meanwhile, what do you like about Chandler’s Ford and its immediate area?
Here are some of my related posts:
Read blog posts by Allison Symes published on Chandler’s Ford Today.