A personal introduction to Bradden

Bradden is a vibrant little village, with a diverse mix of people who have arrived here from all over the country, as well as those native to Northamptonshire.

A week after we moved to Bradden, we attended the annual Barbecue, and it was a fantastic introduction to the village. As we stood, uncertain and nervous on the village green, balancing our glass of wine, pork roast and salad, we heard accents ranging from Welsh, Lancashire, Yorkshire, Kent and – of course- Northamptonshire.

I had been nervous moving to such a small village. I need never have worried. The people here are welcoming, chatty and neighbourly.

Moving here with three small children and a dog, and being a keen gardener, I soon found that if I wasn’t talking to other walkers out and about, or fellow gardeners as I weeded my garden, I was talking to the other mothers at the school bus stop, (where the free bus takes the children to either Greens Norton Primary School or Sponne Secondary School).

When I sprained my foot my first winter here, I was overwhelmed with the  help and support that arrived from the community, from offers to take the children to the bus stop, to shop for me, to walking the dog.

Bradden is a “proper” village. It has a church, St Michaels, which has services on a regular basis. The most attended, of course, are the Easter, Harvest and the Crib Service on Christmas Eve. The Crib Service is always packed. Every year, Helen Castle manages to “pull a rabbit out of the hat”, and get the local, and village children, to enact a modern twist upon the traditional Christmas Story. (See her article on this under Church Events).

In addition to the church services there are numerous church events from the Cameo Opera Evening – usually held around May – to the Bradden Cafe – held in December.

On a more secular note, there are other social events which now take place regularly in the village. The barbecue is an annual event requiring considerable organisation from a small number of, what have become known as, “the usual suspects”. These, are the people who go out in wind and rain delivering advertising leaflets, selling tickets, persuading people to contribute puddings, salads and items for the raffle. They then set up the barbecue, cook the food, clear up and then collapse with wine and de-brief!

In addition, we have a bi-annual Quiz night. Geoff Markham thinks up fiendish questions to tax the memories of villagers, fresh fish and chips are fried up on site, and alcohol is sold to those who find this assists their memories!

So, this is our village, our community, our Bradden.

(Karen Martin: 16.1.2010)

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