September 2023: Letters

Can you donate for refugees?

DO you have old sleeping bags, blankets, raincoats or tents that you could donate?

I’m Miriam, a volunteer with Care4Calais Bristol and resident of Downend.

I’m off to Calais with the team at the end of August to volunteer at the C4C warehouse.

C4C is a volunteer-run refugee charity working with refugees in the UK, France and Belgium.

I will be helping sort and distribute donations to refugees who have fled their home countries due to danger and persecution.

We are really in need of tents, blankets, raincoats and waterproof clothes, and men’s toiletries.

The conditions have been really bad out there, due to poor weather, and many people don’t have a warm, dry place to sleep at night.

If you have any of these items and would like to donate them so we can take them with us, please get in touch either by email at or by phone on 07909 080737.

You can keep up to date with all our latest work through our social media platforms.

Miriam Betts


Poppy Appeal needs help

THE UK’s biggest armed Forces charity, the Royal British Legion, is appealing for new volunteers to

help run its annual Poppy Appeal to raise vital funds to help veterans, current serving personnel, and their families, who have served and sacrificed for their country.

The charity, which organises the Poppy Appeal every October and November, relies on more than

3,500 dedicated volunteers to help deliver the appeal across the UK each year.

If you are looking for a more active part in the Appeal, we would love to have you as the Poppy

Appeal Organiser for Bristol City Centre, Clifton, Westbury-on-Trym or Bishopston and Horfield. This role is crucial to delivering the Appeal in the city and includes distributing poppy boxes, organising a team of dedicated volunteers, and counting money.

You will be fully supported in the role, including receiving training before the Poppy Appeal.

If you are well organised with excellent time management, capable of leading a small team, able to build key relationships and have strong verbal and written communications, a Poppy Appeal Organiser role may be perfect for you.

We would encourage anyone who is interested in volunteering for the Poppy Appeal in Bristol to get in touch with us to find out more.

To find out more and get involved with volunteering for the Poppy Appeal, visit or call 0345 845 1945.

Louise Dolen,

Community Fundraiser

RBL Bristol and South Gloucestershire

Unicorn topper is fantastic

WELL done ladies! The unicorn topper on the top of the pillar box outside the paper shop looks magnificent.

Whoever did the topper should be very proud of themselves.

It’s a pity the magic didn’t spread into the shops. It would be lovely to see more done to make the shops look magical. With a little thought you would be surprised what can be done.

Gracie stands proud in Downend – let’s kick start the shops now.

Gracie is only going to be here until September, let’s hope the magic leaves something behind to make people think.

Once again, well done ladies

Mrs L Rickards


Find out about family history

ARE you interested in either family or local history?

The Family and Local History Fair, on September 23 at the BAWA Leisure Centre on Southmead Road, Filton from 10am to 4pm, is a free event and is the first of its type since the Covid pandemic interrupted such activities three years ago.

Organised and hosted by the Bristol & Avon Family History Society, the exhibitors will include a number of regional family history societies who will be able to offer you advice and guidance on research into your ancestors, with tips on how to crack those brick walls to unlock the stories behind those old family rumours and mysteries.

Also in attendance will be local Record Offices (Archives) and national organisations.

A number of local history groups will be attending to reveal the work they have done on their districts and communities, and to give tips on how to research and record the history of your own areas.

There will also be commercial exhibitors and a live talk on historic maps, demonstrating the free Know Your Place online system and how to use it – an absolute must for anyone interested in the history of places and people.

For more information and details see the website, visit our Facebook page or email contact

Geoff Gardiner