Brickendon has a number of social activities catering for a variety of interests.
The friendly club is possibly the oldest established ‘Club’ in ‘Hertford Hundred West’ and certainly has the liveliest old members! Now based in Brickendon it provides an opportunity for those over sixty to meet others in Fanshaws Room, Brickendon’s Village Hall, from 2-4pm on the third Monday every month. Of course there’s tea and delicious homemade cakes, but first we have a lighthearted quiz – half the fun is disputing the quiz master’s answers. Then a raffle – everyone contributes 50p and something – from a bar of soap to a bag of apples or tin of baked beans. We catch up on the gossip and have a laugh. Midsummer we go out locally for a cream tea and in December for a Christmas lunch. We do our best to provide transport for anyone unable to walk far. If you would like to come along to meet us then contact Beryl Matthews on 01992 511617 for further details.
The book club started in Brickendon in 2005 and to date has read 155 books. We are a small group and members take it in turns to host the meeting on the first Tuesday each month to discuss our current read and get ideas on the next. We have read a wide range of books recommended by members from Dickens ‘Bleak House’ to Celia Imry’s ‘Not Quite Nice’ and more recently Gail Honeyman’s ‘Eleanor Olipant is completely fine’. Nothing is ruled out and we enjoy discussing them as well as catching up on the local gossip over a glass of wine and a crisp. We are usually able to acquire a set of books of our choice each month from the public library. If you are interested in coming along then please ring Beryl on 01992 511617 for further information.
The village green has two open goal posts with a sizeable playing area between them. It is not marked up but is great for casual kick-abouts and practice shots. Five-a-side matches can also be played on it. But we have no formal team and to date no one has shown any interest in organising any regular activity. However, local youngsters take the opportunity for a kick-about on it.
We have two tennis courts adjacent to Brickendon Green (at the top of the lane from Bayford Station). They are in an idyllic rural setting. There is a hut with chairs in which to change. The courts each cost £5 hour to hire for both residents and non-residents.
Forget the image of old men in berets in the Place de Ville. Boules/pétanque is an internationally played game for men and women of all ages. In Brickendon it is played in the car park of The Farmers Boy where five temporary ‘pistes’ are laid out, and is now the most popular sport played in the Parish. Since the first social games in 2004, members have gained experienced from club play, match play and training days arranged with experienced coaches. Brickendon Pétanque Boules Club is now affiliated to the Chiltern Region of the English Petanque Association and has a team in the Central Herts Pétanque League. The thirty members have mixed skills and on average 16 players arrive to play at each meeting. Anyone can join for £5 pa whether or not they live in the parish. Social games are played every Tuesday evening from 5.30pm, Thursday mornings from 10am to 12 noon and Sunday mornings from 9.30am to 12 noon. Matches at home and away are played on Monday and Wednesday evenings (two different leagues). The club is particularly keen to encourage youngsters to enjoy this skilful game and get hooked on the art of ‘shooting’ - hitting a boule directly, or ‘pointing’ - getting it really close to the ‘coch’ (short for cochonnet, ie. jack), whilst playing pétanque. For more information contact John Lambie on 511551 or visit the club’s website.
Table tennis is played once a week throughout the year in Fanshaws Room (the parish hall). We have one table which is set up currently for adults. During the winter play takes place every Tuesday evening from 8 to 10pm and during the summer every Thursday evening (except when a parish council meeting takes precedence). Details from Marion Todd on 511497. The table is easily set up and we would like to encourage young people to learn to play, perhaps on a weekday evening after school with adult supervision and are waiting for volunteer parents to come forward to initiate the proposal.