About bill

Bill Church is the story traveller, a former Headteacher who has a passion for sharing stories with people from 3 years up to 103 years of age. Bill loves stories; finding them (and the story’s story!), telling them and writing them! He is passionate in believing that everybody can tell stories and is keen to help people whatever their age do this. His blog ranges from his Story telling experiences to his obsessions sport, bird watching and cycling!

The Mighty Hatters!!!!

I have to start with football today after yesterday. It was an early start because the game was being televised- I normally think televised lunch time kick offs are devoid of atmosphere – how wrong I was yesterday! The Mighty Hatters were up against Bournemouth top of the league and a club with money their striker cost more than our whole team put together. The opening exchanges had us on the back foot but we did score the important opener. Some bizarre refereeing decisions stirred up the crowd and create  a raucous atmosphere. A second goal stunner soon followed and had us in dreamland!  Bournemouth showed their class second half and pulled the two goals back. We were deflated and apprehensive that it might go further downhill. As the clock ticked down drama was about to be unleashed! A wonderful piece of skill so the ball crash into the net to send us in ecstasy.

The subsequent roar lifted the roof of the stadium , and the game was over. The noise continued for ages such was the joyous celebrations! Moments like that are what you dream of and rarely happen! So you savour every minute! It is usually the hope that gets you becuase you know full well the next time you might come back down to earth! Still as I write this I am still buzzing!!!!

Back to a Story Telling Blog tomorrow!

Mollie and Wassail

Delightfully anarchic Wassail on Wednesday night at Wick Court. The young people from Ravenstone fully participated in the Wassail-feeding toast, apple juice to the tree as well as chanting, banging instruments and circling the tree three times! I think we made a fantastic racket that might of been heard in Gloucester as we banished any troublesome spirits

Afterwards I was persuaded to tell my Mollie story. She still weaves her magic after umpteen tellings! It is now getting on for four thousand people that have head that story!

Today I ventured North to my friend Peter for a cycle ride. BRRRRRRRRR!!!!!!!! My bike on the back of the van had chunks of ice form on it on the journey! We had a good ride in the lanes of Worcestershire and Herefordshire.

It is an early start tomorrow for football because it is a 12.30 kick off for television (boo!) Not that confident of a result as we were so rusty last week after a month off but it is the hope that gets you!


Here’s to thee, old apple tree

                                             That blooms well, bears well

                                              Hats full, caps full

                                              3 Bushel bags full

                                               All under one tree

                                             Hurrah, Hurrah!!!!

Guess who is leading the wassail at Wick Court tomorrow evening? The children from Ravenstone Primary School London  will be helping us!

In fact a busy day tomorrow I will be taking them bird watching during the day, followed by the Wassail and then I am off to Book Club!



Bikes, Books and Birds (plus some Sport!)

Those of you who have read The Third Policeman (a very surreal and funny book by Flann O’Brien) will have noted the various references to the characters being 50% bike and 50% human or variations on those %s. Over the last couple of days I feel I am getting back to those percentages as I have managed some cycling again. It does mean the bike gets mucky frequently!!

Been watching some Starling Murmurations when out Owl watching (didn’t see any Owls but did see the Kingfisher pictured below nearby – the picture looks more like a painting than a photo!).

Off on a Granddaughter visit tomorrow which we are looking forward to.

Now my Sport’s Report! Despite everything that has happened Down Under I was absolutely glued to my radio yesterday morning not daring to move in case we last a wicket. Test cricket is by far the most compelling form of cricket! At least England showed some fight in this game. The FA Cup Third Round had a good weekend and was worried that my team the Mighty Hatters might trip up yesterday lunch time. They were by all accounts very rusty (it has been a month since they last played) but managed to scrape through- don’t think I am looking forward to the next round being away to Newcastle’s conquerors!

Finally we have our first Book Club Meeting on Wednesday where we will be discussing The Magic Toyshop by Angela Carter. I found it a disturbing book.


Two Wrens

A domestic day with plenty of jobs! Including a tip run and taking down the outside Christmas lights. The highlight of the day was seeing two Wrens at the same time. We often see a single Wren in the garden so this was a rarity. Couldn’t get a picture of both together but three pictures from today below.


Perfect Day

Thanks to Lou Reed for today’s title. Today is our wedding anniversary – we have been married many years! We decided to try and beat the weather by cycling to the Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust at Slimbridge. We were hoping to see a Glossy Ibis that has been near the canal at Slimbidge.


Yes we saw it! It reminded us of the time about 12 or 15 years ago when 17 of these birds turned up near the river and the village had many bird watchers from all over the country turn up.

Clare had expected me to make sure she saw some wild Common Cranes. No Worries!!!! Miraculously I managed to book two of them to appear.

We were delighted to see two fly overhead (sadly couldn’t get my camera ready in time). Tonight we rounded off with a lovely Indian meal. What a great day!


Last night we went to Splatt Bridge hoping to see a Barn Owl – it forgot to turn up! watched a Starling Murmuration eventually there were about 1,000 birds. Hoping that builds up over the next few days. Watch this space!



Book Song

A good old Fairport song for today’s title, only because i am listening to it as I write!

I am now seriously getting down to work on finding and developing stories for our Two Severn Bores performances in the Spring (fingers crossed we will be able to!) I am in that faffing around stage as I play with ideas before I start to slog at it. It is important I come up with the themes for the stories so Dan can work on his songs (he is also on tour with Lady Nade in January/February so he will need some time).

In the spirit of helping out I have offered my village school my services if hit by staff absence- more as a Story Teller than a supply teacher!

Still wondering when my football team will next play a game- I think they will be rusty whenever they start again!


I mentioned yesterday I saw a Great White Egret here in Frampton. We have had three types of Egret in the area over the last week. Little, Cattle  and Great White.

Little Egrets are now common throughout the country although I remember 30 odd years ago there were a rare sight. Cattle Egrets are gradually appearing over the last five to ten years and Great Whites are now breeding in the South West.

A couple of pictures I took yesterday. The Great White is on the ground and the Little Egret is in flight.



2022 !!!!

Happy New Year Folks! A quiet last night here in Frampton.

A bird watch this morning with a friend. A Great White Egret was the highlight. (might add a picture tomorrow if the one I took is any good). Plenty of Fieldfares and Starlings in groups. Also saw about thousand Golden Plovers in the distance over Slimbridge.