From the Newsletter Editorial...

A belated Happy New Year to all our readers.   Issue of this newsletter was delayed awaiting news on whether the Northumberland Estate would appeal before the deadline against refusal of the planning permissions for building on Park Road Allotment Gardens and re-location of allotments to within Syon.   Appeals on both have been lodged.  Discussions are in course between the Estate, who have requested a public enquiry, and the Inspectorate as to how these appeals will proceed.

TIS intends continuing to oppose loss of the existing 100 year old allotment site.   It will involve a lot of work which heightens a state of affairs in that we are fortunate to have strong membership numbers, but we do need more hands on deck to assist with the wide variety of activities and projects we endeavour to undertake.  Additional help is needed to organise activities, cover planning issues and most importantly we are still looking for a permanent Treasurer.   Do please think seriously about offering a few hours occasionally, or joining the committee, on the basis many hands make light work.

Looking back, Monday 11th December saw a downfall of snow; on the 13th it rained almost constantly.  How fortunate Tuesday 12th was chosen for TIS’s annual Carols in the Square when the weather, although cold, was so much more favourable meaning there was a goodly crowd to enjoy the singing ably led by All Saints’ Church choir and the Salvation Army band.   The tree sponsored by Bellway was splendid, the usual excellent mulled wine concocted for us courtesy of Burchells was enjoyed and we were able to welcome Isleworth Ward Councillor in her capacity as Mayor along to the proceedings.

The November quiz night was as popular as in the past, with about 100 participants and we are extremely grateful to Brian Pett for once again compiling the all-important intriguing questions; also all those who helped out to make the evening a success.   Barclays’ £for£ contribution made for a profit of £1,660. That evening was preceded by an equally enjoyable excellent talk by Andrew Robertshaw, Eye Deep in Hell - the Soldier in Passchendaele 1917 and followed by the well-attended Robb Johnson musical event, both arranged and with profits going towards TIS’s 390 Project.

It will have been noticed that throughout the Borough poppies appeared on street furniture prior to Remembrance Sunday.  This emanated from an initiative by a Feltham resident to raise funds to purchase 1,000 poppies.  In the event Hounslow Highways agreed to be main sponsor creating a Poppy Path linking all the Borough’s war memorials.  Hounslow Royal British Legion helped co-ordinate volunteers installing and removing them so they can be used again next year.  As is traditional, on the day TIS among many others laid a wreath at the Clock Tower War Memorial ceremony.  This saw probably the largest ever crowd attendance and included, as part of the 390 Project, representation by local pupils of each of those named on the memorial who died in 1917.  A newsletter updating on the project is enclosed. 

For the future we are delighted to have joined with Friends of Spring Grove House to make early arrangements for the Summer Social.  It will be held in the splendid surroundings of the house’s Music Room, former home to botanist and explorer Sir Joseph Banks and later the Pears family, proprietors of the former local factory manufacturing, among other products, the famous Pears transparent soap.   At the March meeting we welcome Mark Ormiston, of Ormiston Wire, the 6th generation of his family to lead this Isleworth based company.   It started life in London in 1793 making spring wire for corsets and wigs; today among their range is wire for Thunderbirds, lanes for British Rowing and British Antarctic Surveys.  In addition, we have invited along Sean Doran and Sophia Laird, the Council’s Conservation Officers, a chance to raise any issues as well as hear their current plans for upgrading the Borough’s Heritage List, reviewing Conservation Areas and other aspects of their work.