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NEWS | Burger King opens in Hereford. Grab yourself a FREE whopper!

The wait is over! Burger King in Hereford officially opens today.

Keep an eye out for members of the team in High Town & Commercial Street. They will be speaking to members of the public about the new fast food outlet. If you’re lucky enough, you may even get a voucher for a free whopper. 1,000 are being given away.

Burger King is located on Commercial Street in the unit that was previously occupied by Lakeland.

NEWS | Cashino set to move to Commercial Street

Plans have been approved to turn one of the former Chadds units in Commercial Street into a Cashino.

The planning application details the change of use from retail (A1) to amusement centre (Sui Generis).

Cashino currently occupy a unit in Eign Gate.

More info – Herefordshire Council Planning site.

Application Ref: P191957/F

WHAT’S ON? | Camel racing at Longtown Show

Who fancies Camel Racing?

Its the main ring attraction at Longtown and District Show which takes place on Saturday 17th August.

NEWS | West Mercia Police issue advice over ‘Sheep Worrying’

The following article is from the West Mercia Police website.

We can all enjoy the beautiful landscapes and countryside that sheep farming in the UK has played an integral role in creating and maintaining. Farmers appreciate that lots of people like their dog to enjoy the countryside with them, but as much of the UK’s rural landscape is maintained by grazing sheep there is always a strong chance you will encounter some whilst out with your dog.

It is vital that you keep your dog on the lead around livestock, even if you can usually trust it to come to call. If you live in or near a farming area, you must make sure that your dog cannot escape from your property, as it may find its way onto land containing sheep.

It is an offence to allow a dog to worry sheep. Worrying includes attacking or chasing sheep.

Sheep are Valuable Assets and any harm to them, harms a famer’s livelihood.

It is every dogs instinct to chase, even if they are usually obedient and good with other animals. Chasing by dogs can do serious damage to sheep, even if the dog doesn’t catch them. The stress of worrying by dogs can cause sheep to die and pregnant ewes to miscarry.

Sheep fleeing from dogs are often killed or seriously injured by their panicked attempts to escape, causing untold damage to fences and field boundaries in the process.

Dogs chasing lambs can cause mis-mothering issues, with lambs dying from starvation or hypothermia when they become separated from their mother and fail to find her again.

Dog bites can cause death in sheep or necessitate them being put down at a later date, or in less severe cases considerable veterinary bills and additional welfare issues as a result of flies being attracted to the blood and leading to a nasty health problem in sheep called ‘fly strike’. Injuries to sheep can also delay the normal farming routine, be it the mating season or administration of vital medicines and vaccines.

**Please keep dogs on a lead**

The Countryside and Right of Way Act (CROW Act) (Opens in a new window) sets out public rights of access to open land and the restrictions to these rights. Although CROW allows anyone on to open access land (land you can access without having to use paths, including mountains, moorland, heaths, downs and registered common land) for recreation, the Act states that the public can only go on this land if they keep dogs on a fixed lead of 2 metres or less near livestock. The owner of open access land can close areas containing sheep to dogs for up to six weeks once a year, as a safeguard during lambing. Trained guide and hearing dogs are still allowed in these areas during this closure.

FOOTBALL | Bulls sack boss Richards after Kings Lynn defeat

Hereford FC Chairman, Andrew Graham, has this morning confirmed that Head Coach, Marc Richards, has left the club.

Following lengthy discussions last night, the Board of Directors made the difficult decision to relieve Marc of his duties and make a change to the management team. 

Marc’s assistant, Will Morford, is also leaving Edgar Street and in the short term Bulls’ Head of Football, Tim Harris, will take charge of the first team in a caretaker capacity while a new Head Coach is sought.

Speaking about this decision, after meeting Marc to tell him about the Board’s decision, the Bulls’ Chairman said: ‘We never envisaged making a change this quickly, and this is not a decision we have taken lightly. It has been a really tough call.

‘Marc is without doubt a technically gifted coach who has made some significant changes, but after a lengthy discussion with him about the club’s progress, it was concluded that the Board and Marc’s thoughts differ greatly.

‘The performances we have seen at the start of this campaign have also not been what we had hoped for and, when added to a run of just one win in the last eight games last season, as a Board we felt we had to act immediately to give ourselves the best possible chance of competing towards the top end of the National League North table. We believe this is an achievable target and it is what the new Head Coach will be tasked with aiming for.

‘As the search for a new Head Coach now begins, I would ask that our fantastic supporters get right behind the players, as always, in the upcoming fixtures, starting with the home game against Telford tomorrow night. We want to make the transition to a new management team as smooth as possible and in the intervening period, with the backing of fans, Tim will help us do that.

‘We are confident that we have a talented squad with lots of potential and players who are going to be exciting to watch. We understand that this announcement will be unsettling for many of them, which is why passionate backing from the terraces and stands over the next few weeks will be even more important than usual.

‘I can reassure supporters that, as a Board, our focus now is making the right appointment to this most significant of roles. We are ambitious and are absolutely determined to get this right.

‘Finally, it is important to acknowledge the significant amount of time and effort that Marc and his staff have put in while at the club. We would all like to thank them for their hard work and wish them all the very best for the future.’

FOOTBALL | King’s Lynn Town v Hereford Preview

After Tuesday night’s victory over Gloucester City the Bulls now face a cross-country route to King’s Lynn Town at the weekend. Hereford remain unbeaten after the opening two matches, and it will be interesting to see how well the Linnets have prepared for the National League North following their promotion. Here is the comprehensive Talking Bull Away Day preview from Simon Wright.

Kings Lynn FC

Just over a year ago, Kings Lynn lost the Play-Off Final at home to Slough, despite being clear favourites. As a consequence, the Bulls ended up in National League North rather than South, which created all sorts of complications and we struggled to adapt.

I’ve already suggested to Club Secretary Martin Watson that as Kings Lynn’s shortcomings left us in the North, they should do the decent thing and pick up the overnight bill for Hereford players and supporters alike. Cue the music for Mission Impossible.  I don’t think Martin fancies that conversation even though Lynn’s owner does own a nearby hotel.

Ah yes, the Kings Lynn’s owner. When an entire Club Board have previously been disqualified from being a director, alarm bells jangle in Herefordshire.  Admittedly, the Board does only consist of one person. Fair to say that owner and total Board Stephen Cleeve is a “controversial” figure.  As supporters, we are not going to forget how he raised the admission prices for our last visit. Many of our travelling support that night retaliated as best they could by refusing to spend any money at the Walks.

The Walks is a seriously old ground first used for football 140 years ago. It still retains the generous proportions of decades gone by. That said, hard to imagine how 13,000 once squeezed in for the visit of Exeter in the FA Cup. Nowadays, a capacity of 5,000 looks more realistic. It’s an academic point, given that the Linnets averaged 712 supporters in their promotion season, down 9% from the year before. I guess they missed us.

A quick stadium description for anyone who hasn’t previously travelled.  The vintage 1956 grandstand has 1100+ seats on one touchline with a huge covered terrace on the opposite side. There are open terraces behind the goals.  Here’s a curiosity – The original seats in the stand were sold to Hereford United when they were promoted to the Football League.

Any reference to the Clubhouse will probably end up with “here’s what we could have had.”  The Linnet Lounge, at the far end of the grandstand, is spacious with 50+ seats and Sky TV. On sale is IPA, Carlsberg, Somersby cider and a very good Bellhaven stout.

No parking at the ground and very limited nearby. Town centre car park like St James Car Park in Clough Lane charge £4, requiring a walk to the Walks. It does make a pre-match town centre pint possible. Fenman, being opposite the station is handy but has no real ale.  The gem is the Crown and Mitre in Ferry Street. Five real ales.  Or try the local Wetherspoons, the Globe.  After our last visit, the only people in the Spoons were Hereford supporters. Strange place, Kings Lynn.

With promotion in mind, last time the Linnets reached Step 2 in 2009, they ran out of money, failed ground standard test and closed down.  Things are different now, according to their website “King’s Lynn Town FC is proud to be different and aims to remain sustainable and continue its growth purely from the revenue generated through ticket sales, sponsorship and other auxiliary incomes.” Allegedly.

The last club balance sheet showed a deficit of £162,000, £70,000 higher than the year before.  To add to their woes, £30,000 is required to cover ground improvements to meet requirements for Step 2.  One wonders whether history might repeat itself.  The work is mainly around setting up a proper segregation area, with a separate turnstile block, refreshments and toilets. The double turnstile block alone costs over £6,000. Who knew?   Having invested in a shiny segregated area, I fully expect our support to be corralled within it on the basis there was some after-match unpleasantness after our last visit.  According to their local press was wholly the fault of the visitors.

Here’s the bad news. Admission is £17 for seats (£15 for over 65’s) and two pounds less for terraces. Under 16s are £2.  These are very top-end prices, second only to York in our Division. Just for comparison, I checked against Walsall FC prices in League Two and they are virtually identical.  I understand why Lynn feel they need to charge so much (and by the way, their season tickets are £290. That’s higher than Birmingham City.) but I’d argue that is counter-productive. Home supporters are being priced out, never mind visitors. A mature Hereford-supporting couple will pay £34 just to get in, on top of considerable travel costs, for what is second tier Non-League football.  That’s simply too much.  I wonder whether there is scope to copy the professional game.  In the Championship, clubs who have long-distance away games often come to a mutual arrangement to dramatically reduce admission to visiting season-ticket holders. As a result, more people travel and the goodwill engendered means those travellers will spent more, to make up any financial shortfall.

During our last Championship season, we had two bruising battles with Kings Lynn and annoyingly lost them both, out muscled and out-thought. Surely the new reinforced Hereford FC will be rather more streetwise.

Most of the Lynn squad have since moved on, with both their full backs staying on their feet long enough to move into the Football League.  Six players still remain, names which still send a bit of a shudder through our regulars. To their credit, most of the remailers are local blokes.

In goal is Pedro as he’s universally called, even though the name Alex Street appears in the programme. He’s local, cleans the streets of Lynn (“Street of the Streets?”) among other jobs during the week. Now in his testimonial season, he is accused of making too many errors last season.

Defender Ryan Fryatt and midfielder Michael Clunan are both Lynn born and bred.  Two more long-term Ryans are also Norfolk-born. Ryan Jarvis has 500 games in his career and distributes herbs for a living (not those sort) Ryan Hawkins was a thorough nuisance up front against us. He’s best known for receiving an injury so serious during the Cirencester v Kings Lynn game that the Air Ambulance had to land on the pitch to treat him. He had a seven-inch gash in his leg.  I hasten to add not his striking partner Michael Gash though said striker did cause us a lot of pain. Michael Gash isn’t from Norfolk, he was born on an air base in Germany.  Think of him as the Linnet’s riposte to Reece Styche. Mature, regular scorer, been around a bit.

Lynn’s standout man last season was striker Adam Marriott.  He joined the Linnets in October when they were struggling. Weeks later, manager Ian Culverhouse returned for a second stint and between the two of them, turned the club around. Marriott scored 27 goals, including 3 in the Play-Offs and won the Southern League Golden Boot. Supporters with longer memories may recall Marriott used to play for Royston Town.  He is the only Crows player to ever score against Hereford FC in 3 attempts.

Linnets have made 5 new signings so far.  Only two of the 5 have Step 2 or higher experience.  Nathan Fox is their new left back. He’s only 26 with 14 clubs behind him, so doesn’t sound like a long-term signing.  Lynn, probably through necessity, manage with a small squad.

Among the usual hype on the Linnets website, there were some surprisingly honest words from Mark Hearle, Head of Media:

Season 2019/ 20 is solely about one thing – survival. Surviving in a league with a handful of full-time clubs.  Surviving the many hours that will be spent on numerous northern road trips on wet Saturday afternoon’s to far flung reaches of the UK. And surviving the experience of being very much a small fish in a big sea, something some may not be accustomed to. This is the reality.”  A reality bought home by a comprehensive 3-0 defeat at Guiseley in Match One. However, this was followed up by a 2-1 home victory over Kettering, and so what will reality bring on Saturday?

And finally, here’s an intriguing quiz question.

Which Kings Lynn squad member holds a world record?

The answer is 47-year-old assistant manager and occasional emergency goalkeeper Pail Bastock. He’s played in goal 1,279 times in league and cup competitions.

We’re Getting There

BY ROAD:  A very long 175 miles (PE30 5PB) via A14, A605, A47.   If you think we have it rough, consider our recent hosts Bideford, a former Step 3 club who had Lynn in the same League.  They had to gather their players after they had finished work on Friday night before traveling to Norfolk. The travelling took 7 hours, arriving at 2.00am, Saturday morning before crashing out in their hotel. Their combined bill for coach and hotel was over £4,000.

BY TRAIN:  Hopeless from the Shire. A straight two hour run from London Kings Cross. Station is only a 5-minute walk from the club, straight across the park (King’s Lynn Walks).

BY COACH:  Against his better judgement, Reg was persuaded to try to run an executive coach to Kings Lynn. To his own surprise, he’s close to getting the numbers he needs. If you are Shire based and fancy Kings Lynn then do travel with Reg. Visit Hereford Awaydays Facebook page for more.

NEWS | Hereford Bypass and Southern Link Road schemes paused

A cabinet member decision has been taken today to pause and review the Hereford bypass and Southern link road schemes.

Cllr John Harrington, Cabinet Member for Infrastructure and Transport, said:

“Following a change of administration and with time to reflect, it has now been decided to pause all work on the Hereford bypass and Southern link road to allow further time to review these schemes in more detail and look at other options. There are many complex issues that need to be considered and it is very important to examine these thoroughly.

“The views of residents, commuters and local businesses are very important to us. It is vital that travel, transport and infrastructure developments in Hereford support the economy, help to improve health and wellbeing and make Herefordshire a better place to live, work and visit. We also need to ensure we effectively respond to the climate emergency declared by Herefordshire Council and the Government.

“As part of this review it is important to consider alternative options. For example this will include infrastructure for cyclists and pedestrians (including safe routes to school), an eastern river crossing and trialling the removal of some traffic signals. It could also include options for an electric bus service, improving school bus services and an ultra-light rail system.

“All options need to be considered as we look to the long term and towards providing a high quality, integrated and low carbon transport system for the whole of Herefordshire, not just for the immediate future but for generations to come.”

NEWS | Resurfacing works set to improve Widemarsh children’s centre car park

Extensive works will take place over the next few weeks to improve the car park surface at Herefordshire’s Widemarsh children’s centre.  

Herefordshire Council has invested over £36k into the planned works which are set to improve the car park surface and drainage system in the shared car park to prevent it from flooding in the future.  

The car park will be closed to vehicles from Monday 19 August for 4 weeks, but pedestrian access will be maintained whilst the works are carried out.  

Alternative parking will be available on the right hand approach to the Kingdom Hall and additional spaces will be available at Westfields Football Club.

NEWS | Man climbs crane in Hereford

It was a busy morning for the emergency services in Hereford after a man decided to climb to the top of a crane on Friar Street.

Officers quickly closed the road off and the man eventually climbed down independently despite spending a couple of hours at the top of the crane.

However it later appeared that the man had posted a photo on his personal Facebook page while at the top of the crane.

PLANNING | Herefordshire & Ludlow College submit plans to improve Holme Lacy Campus

Herefordshire & Ludlow College has submitted plans to improve the Holme Lacy campus.

The proposed works comprise campus-wide landscape improvements, the creation of a new enterprise centre, new stables and associated agricultural stores.

You can view the planning application by visiting – https://www.herefordshire.gov.uk/info/200142/planning_services/planning_application_search?search-term=registered%20in%20the%20last%207%20days&search-service=recent&search-source=items&search-item=registered%20in%20the%20last%207%20days#tab2

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