On Saturday 29th July until Saturday 19th August this year Belarussian children will hopefully be coming to our area. They all live in the area of Belarus that was and still is affected by the fall out of the Chernobyl disaster. They will be coming here for some fresh air and decent food.

A consultation exercise is under way to ask the residents of Newark and Sherwood their views on a review of sites allocated for housing and employment in the district.

The Gambia is a very small country in West Africa almost totally surrounded by the much larger Senegal. 25 years ago The Derek Bailey Foundation was set up to develop educational opportunities in a very rural area around the village of Nyofelleh.

Excitement is building for the new LEGO model exhibition coming to The Harley Gallery from 22nd January to 2nd April, following the phenomenal success of last year's Brick City.

The first project to help reduce flooding in the town has been completed by Josh Wells, a PhD student at NTU Brackenhurst who is working with hydrologist Dr Jillian Labadz and the Environment Agency, together with Stuart Smith (Smith JCB Hire of Southwell) who has dug long and hard in difficult circumstances to complete the works before the winter rains.

Just six months ago, I was happily going about my business as a volunteer for Southwell Cricket Club when I met Anna Joyce as part of organising our annual event to raise money for local charities. As many people already know, Anna is heavily involved with Flower Pod, Southwell and REACH, both of which provide support to adults with learning disabilities.

A TV programme which includes Southwell's own Bramley Tree and the Minster will be shown at prime time on Channel 4 on Saturday 17th December.

A list of the winners for the Nottinghamshire Federation WIs Bramley Apple Festival Class Title Winners

You might recognise local chef and entrepreneur Ed Halls from the Clock House Cafe in Upton. He has many years’ experience in the catering industry and has worked in Michelin starred restaurants as well as being a private chef and proud owner of two award winning eateries. This month he has launched an exciting new venture, Griddle & Shake.

Meet Santa travelling in his sleigh this Christmas! The Lions will be helping Santa travel around Southwell and the surrounding villages starting on Monday 12th December in Farnsfield. There are some changes to the route this year and there will be 2½ nights in Farnsfield. Santa aims to start at around 6pm and finish at 9pm, but due to the many children he sees, all timings are approximate. Please bear with him if he is not quite on schedule. The Lions sincerely hope that Santa and his helpers will see as many local children and adults as possible.

Southwell is about to see the opening of a wonderful new play park because of the vision and dedication of a small group of local parents. In just over eighteen months, Friends of Southwell Parks (FoSP) has worked with children and schools to design the park, raise funds within the community and engage prominent businesses for sponsorship. They have successfully applied for grant funding and over the past two months have turned their hand to project managing the installation of the park. This is quite an achievement considering all the volunteers are fitting in efforts between work and looking after small children.

British folk heroine Kate Rusby and former Bellowhead frontman Jon Boden are among the first headline acts announced to appear at the Gate To Southwell Festival next June, and reduced price tickets are now available.

Animal enthusiasts across the nation will return for the latest installment of the National Pet Show, taking place on the 5th & 6th November 2016 at Birmingham's NEC - and you could be in with a chance of winning a pair of tickets!

Students past and present attended the annual Prizegiving ceremony at the Minster School in Southwell last month.

WITH the original Bramley apple tree, planted more than 200 years ago, attracting recent media attention, Southwell's popular Bramley Apple Festival has increased significance this year.

The Ven. Nicola Sullivan will be installed as the first woman to be Dean of Southwell in Southwell Minster on Saturday 17th September at 3pm.

Rain did not stop play for the Palace Theatre as the cast of this year's pantomime Jack and the Beanstalk rolled into town for the first time.

This year's Southwell Ploughing Match & Show will be held on Saturday 24th September at Farnsfield, providing a fantastic day out for all ages.

Chiefs at the National Civil War Centre in Newark are looking to recruit more volunteers to work at the rapidly expanding attraction.

Southwell Cricket Club is holding its annual Charity day in support of local charities REACH and Beaumond House at Brackenhurst on August Bank Holiday Monday 29th August.

Southwell Artists are delighted to be joining the Southwell Music Festival again. This year the Southwell Artists' Open Studios will be taking place on Saturday 27th and Sunday 28th August, 10am-5pm daily.