Dear Reader

The recent arrival of snow was a most welcome distraction for children of all ages - an opportunity to get outdoors and play in the wonderful white stuff, making snowmen, snow angels or sledging down a hill. This was a chance to get away from digital screens, remote working and home schooling, a break from being cooped up inside without the usual interaction with friends and colleagues. With the darker days soon behind us, we shall all look forward to stepping onto the road to spring.

Throughout the past year, the pandemic has highlighted issues of vulnerability amongst us yet strengthened the sense of community within. Several features in this issue touch on these, such as the Good Neighbours Scheme (pages 20-21) for volunteers; Tech4Kids (page 46) helping to reduce digital exclusion of children and families in lockdown; and the Daylight Centre in Wellingborough (page 50) supporting the homeless and most vulnerable amongst us. The Broughton Community Fridge initiative (page 24) has not only brought the village closer together but also helps to eliminate food waste in the area; David Wood (page 26) has been growing plants for the NHS; and the OWL project continues to encourage recycling (pages 56-57).

The road to spring is strikingly depicted by the front cover kindly submitted by Kelmarsh Hall & Gardens, who launches a garden season ticket for 2021 - a perfect gift for Mothering Sunday! Another suggestion for that special woman in your life would be a collectable creation from Oakwood Bears & Hares (page 10). Easter should hopefully see the opening of Boughton House (page 16), and Lyveden (page 44) has completed building works and is looking forward to showing us very soon what nature has achieved during lockdown. Birdwatchers will enjoy Martin Izzard’s book on a history of bird recording (page 36), and bee enthusiasts could be inspired by one of the Oundle Festival of Literature events (page 48). Little by little, our world opens up again…

April marks the sixteenth anniversary of the launch of Village Connect. The main purpose was, and remains more than ever, to encourage the support of local businesses, events and charities. I would like to thank you for your continued loyalty over the years and hope that we, together, can help our local businesses and communities even more in the months ahead.


Vivi Sant Cole

Village Connect

Hillcrest House

Church Hill



NN14 1AH

Tel: 01536 744700