Northants Telegraph Sunday Extra - stunning poppies, new publishing firm and free pint for litter picking

Weekly news in brief

By Northants Telegraph reporters
Sunday, 14th November 2021, 7:00 am
Gretton residents have created these stunning knitted poppies for Remembrance Sunday. Images: Fiona Chapman / Facebook

We've got so much news these days that we can't always squeeze everything into the working week. So every Sunday we'll bring you updates on recent stories, some news-in-brief and other things you need to know from across Corby, Wellingborough, East Northamptonshire and Kettering.

Fiona and Ami Chapman and a group of knitters made about 2,700 poppies for a Remembrance Sunday display by the War Memorial on the Village Green in Gretton.

Their vibrant display is a poignant moving tribute to the fallen who made the ultimate sacrifice in war and conflicts defending our country.

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Richard Houghton

Those involved worked on the project for around 12 months and there has been tremendous feedback from the entire community for their incredible efforts.

The Tollemache Arms in Harrington is kicking off a new initiative to reward people for helping to keep the village clean

This month’s initiative will see beer given to those who help pick litter around the area.

People should go to the pub, ask staff for a litter picker and a bag and fill it with rubbish collected on their rambles to collect their free drink.

Irchester volunteers making poppies.

Pub owner Joe Buckley said: “I think this is a brilliant initiative to make us all aware how easy it can be and I really think all pubs should take this idea too and help keep their area clean too.”

A new publishing company based in Manchester is named after a house in Rushden.

Spenwood Books is the brainchild of 61-year-old Richard Houghton, who now lives in Manchester but grew up in Rushden and attended Rushden Boys' School.

His company specialises in books about rock music and takes its name from his family's former home on Alexandra Road.

Richard said: 'I've always written books, and having retired after 40 years in local government, I decided the time was right to set up my own publishing company. I wanted a distinctive name and Spenwood is quite an unusual one.”

Spenwood Books has published two books this year - on rock supergroups Cream and Queen - with a host of titles in the pipeline for 2022.

Richard said: 'I have had a number of books published but I'm really proud that I've been able to set up a company whose books are taking a little bit of Rushden to places as far away as California and New Zealand.”

Richard can be contacted on [email protected]

More information on Spenwood Books can be found at

More than 2,000 poppies are on show in Irchester after a successful community project.

In March 2021 Irchester’s WI approached the parish council with an idea to decorate the railings around Irchester War Memorial for Remembrance Day.

This was agreed, WI ladies picked up their knitting needles and crochet hooks and a plea went out in the parish magazine for help with knitting or crocheting poppies for the display.

Eighteen volunteers from the community came forward, donations of wool came in and everyone started work.

Workshops were held to plan and create the display. More than 2,000 poppies were made and WI members installed the final display which has been well received by Irchester residents.