Saturday, September 05 2015

Welcome to the Great Bowden Village Website

Sutton Road Great Bowden

The beautiful village of Great Bowden lies on the edge of the Welland Valley and has a past history dating back to Anglo Saxon times.

Great Bowden still enjoys a village way of life and to this day has retained itself by largely remaining within its ancient boundaries. Surrounded by attractive countryside and separation of settlements land, Great Bowden has a unique relationship with its larger neighbour, Market Harborough.

The village’s picturesque centre consists of beautiful greens, shops, pubs, the village hall and our historic church.

Dingley Road Great Bowden

With a population of approximately 1000, Great Bowden has an active Parish Council, a variety of services, a host of clubs/groups, a pre-school and a primary school.

If you would like to know more about the history of Great Bowden and its Heritage, please visit the Groups page. The Historical Society or Archaeological & Heritage Group can provide a wealth of information.

Please view the current Newsletter-2015- Autumn w hich includes articles and news items from local residents.


Great Bowden Events Calendar

Select event for venue & further information. If you'd like an event added please tell us about it here.


News & Information

Weltons - New Takeaway Menu and Catering Menu    &         Weltons Cafe Menu



Articles which missed out on the newsletter due to space constraints.


Great Bowden Rec

Surely this is one of the loveliest open green spaces in the district, with its majestic trees and well nurtured cricket pitch: a place where dogs can gambol, owners chat and peaceful sport can flourish. How pleasurable to see women and men, both young and old, playingcricket together; that most civil of games, in such a beautiful setting. Many come from far

around to take a break from the hurly-burly of busy lives;  particularly those with little ones,both parents and carers.

With the millions coming into council coffers from the building of new homes, it would be good to use the excellent toilet block. But who knows...despite all the constraints...could we open them from April to September with a rota of volunteers, I wonder?

I was grateful to the Parish Council as well as to the generosity of the cricket club (who did the footings) to be able to add another bench in memory of my nephew Leo Knapp. He took his life just prior to his twenty first birthday in 2012  and we are only too aware of the dreadful statistics concerning male suicide these days. Suicide is the main cause of death for men under fifty, and they are four times as likely to kill themselves as women. This discrepancy is being

examined and there is an urgent need to offer men opportunities to express and examine their feelings and be given subtle and sure support.

The carving on the bench was done by Glyn Mould from the Sacrewell farm craft centre, squatting on the seat for five hours (with poorly back) whilst we conversed about the fascinations of art and craft and the need for the promulgation of the arts in schools, in particular. The motif is of a dog rose, with flower and thorn - the joy and pain of living -  but also the berries, the fruits of all lives, even those cut tragically short. As Glyn suggested, I hope the bench is similar to a sculpture, stimulating thought and now truly owned by the public.

Two other benches on the south side of the Rec. are notable. Again, they are dedicated to loved - ones, and are strongly fashioned, with fine doweling, not screws. One has stylised carved flowers.

Robert Knapp






The wayward swipe sends the ball
Right out of bounds, into the nettles,
The brambles and the bindweed.
We cross the safe mown sward, clambering
Over the fence: spoiling our whites to
Find the hidden solitary thing.

But once retrieved for play, it’s
Gently tossed from hand to hand -
Then cupped by the bowler -  the crimson hue
Shined and restored; but staying partly
Tarnished too.

We love each other for our feats and failures,
Accepting rough with smooth; helping us to
Bend our inclinations and meet some special need.

Following the interruption, somehow the ball,
Retrieved,  invigorates our play, pitching aspirations
Higher: starting afresh in recreation.

Sometimes we slip and drop the catch,
At others, sudden reflex finds the ball
Stuck in the palm; to be released and
Shared with smiling clasp.

We learn from losses, as with wins.
A  candle shines so brightly in a dark surround.

Communities need rules, but not so
Club - like that we cannot seek the
Unexpected member who teaches us to
Look beyond the boundary we may mark.

Any team must need a leader, but one who
Values both the opener and tail - ender.
Each player has a part, and veterans
Will learn much from the novices.

As in a country dance, the circle hug of
Girls and boys with varied attributes
Declares our oneness; for we hold each other dear.

The polished cups sit proud upon the board,
Inscribed with cherished names.
But with what pride the ground staff cut and roll
In preparation for the dancing of the ball.

Surely, many now spectate who showed us
How to play.
Like the majestic trees, they offer their
Delightful commentary for ever on the
Fairness of our game.

Robert Knapp




LRWT  Great Bowden Local Group



Winter 2015-16 Programme

Weds 16th Sep 2015 “A Winter and Spring Wildlife Tour”. Gianpiero Ferrari, the locally renowned wildlife photographer takes a tour mainly of the U.K. but also features his homeland area of Italy.

Weds 21st Oct 2015 “It's a Hoot!”. Simon Dudhill, Chairman of East Midlands Group of the Hawk and Owl Trust. Simon works at the Raptor Foundation near St. Ives and will tell us all about the work they do at the Rescue and Rehabilitation Centre. If possible he'll be accompanied by a friendly owl!

Weds 18th Nov 2015 “The Secret Life of Bees and their Keepers”. Graham Law, a bee keeper himself, will tell us all we ever wanted to know about these fascinating creatures.

Weds 20th Jan 2016 “Red Deer, Old John and the Nine Day Queen”. Peter Tyldesley, Bradgate Park Trust Director will show us some wildlife highlights and inform us about aspects of the management involved in keeping the park fit for both the wildlife and the people of Leicestershire.

Weds 17th Feb 2016 “Pushing up the Daisies – the Flora and Fauna of Churchyards”. Steve Woodward takes a tour of Leicestershire and Rutland churchyards to see what wildlife is lurking there.

Weds 16th Mar 2016 "Farming for Birds and Wildlife". Julia Hawley, a farmer from Brentingby, near Melton Mowbray tells us how they farm their 300 acre, mainly dairy, Hall Farm not only commercially but for the wildlife as well.


Bruce White, Chairman, tel: 01858 467976 email:

Gerald Mitchell, Village Recorder, tel: 01858 462393 email:

7.30 pm in the Village Hall
Entrance fees (include refreshments) £2 for Wildlife Trust members £3 non-members


Senior Fitcamp with Invictus Training

Fitness and Flexibility for over 55’s

Come and join us for an hour of Fitness, Flexibility and Fun!

Senior Fitcamp is a great way for over 55’s to improve or maintain their fitness and flexibility and is suitable for all abilities and fitness levels, including beginners.

Fitcamp is a circuit training class. Participants complete a series of exercises in a sequence, designed to give the whole body a work out. By combining Cardio Vascular and Resistance training, the circuit will improve your fitness, and strengthen and tone your muscles.

After the circuit there is a flexibility training session, where a series of maintenance and development stretches are performed to help keep your muscles and joints supple and flexible.

A programme of regular exercise can potentially improve your health in so many ways.

The benefits include:-

Senior Fitcamp is much more than a Keep fit class. It is also a great way to meet friends and enjoy a post workout tea or coffee. Your REPS accredited instructor will be on hand to talk about any Health, Nutrition and Fitness related matters and offer advice and guidance.

 If you have concerns about exercising, please speak to your Doctor first.

Senior Fitcamp every Tuesday 11:15am – 12:15 in Great Bowden Village Hall

(Starts Tuesday 16 June 2015)

Only £5 per session, price includes complimentary tea and coffee.

For more information, please contact-

Or visit our website - or phone 07850 468234






New Opportunities to Keep Fit in Great Bowden

Boxercise - Circuit Training - Bootcamps

I started classes at the village hall in Great Bowden in February this year after running successful evening classes in market Harborough since July 2014. 

Monday mornings it is Strength & Tone Circuits class which is an all over body workout using body weight exercises, weights, resistance and cardio. During the 45 minute class there is also a HIIT (high intensity interval training) section which is great for burning maximum calories and also a core workout and stretches.

Friday mornings it's time to beat away the stress of the week at Boxercise! This is a workout like no other, you're using the techniques boxers use to train without any of the sparring. A typical session will include learning the punches and defence moves with instruction of combinations of these, fitness drills, games and tabatta training. The 45 minute long class is aimed at all levels of fitness, all ages and abilities, male or female, it's really for everyone! There's no need to bring a partner or even boxing gloves or pads as these are all provided. 

Also, hot off the press, is my new Summer Body 8 Week Challenge, an all-in package running from now until the end of July which includes classes, boot camps at Great Bowden recreation ground, 1-on-1 session and a home workout plan all for £45, saving over £20!

Juliet Sterland   07917 291072








New group in Great Bowden

The Sunflower Relaxation Classes
Are you stressed? Feeling anxious? Struggling to sleep?
The Sunflower relaxation classes will help you calm your mind, release the stresses of the day and aid your well-being. Relax with gentle movement, breathing techniques and guided visualisations.     

Classes now booking for ~
Wednesdays  - 2nd & 4th of each month at 7.00 till 8.30 pm
Thursdays at 12.15 till 1.15 pm
Places are limited so to book your place, or enquire about the classes, please call Simon on 01858 414 269 or email






Attention all dog owners


It is apparent that dog fouling is becoming an increasing issue in several areas of the village, particularly the Recreation Ground.  Several dog owners have even reported it to the Parish Council on the basis that it reflects badly on all of them. This cannot be allowed to continue unchecked, especially in areas frequented by children. 

You should be aware that Harborough District Council is now aware of the issue; the Dog Warden and Environmental Health Officers will be patrolling the village.

Although people mainly accept that they should clear up after their dog there are a few that don't. Everyone who doesn't clear up after their dog is allowing the streets and parks of Bowden to look unsightly.  There are potentially serious health issues too, particularly for children.

The Dogs (Fouling of Land) Act 1996

If you fail to clear up after your dog in one of the designated areas you will have committed an offence under the Dogs (Fouling of Land) Act 1996.  If a Council Officer witnesses you failing to clean up after your dog, you should be aware that a Magistrate's Court may impose a fine of up to £1,000.

Further details are available on the HDC website

Great Bowden Parish Council






Great Bowden Historical Society

Web Site



Great Bowden Heritage & Archaeology
Web site



Garden Society - Show Information Page









Great Bowden - Looking out for all - Neighbourhood Watch

If you see anyone who you think is acting suspicious or vehicles in the village that seem unusual please do call, Crime prevention on 0116 222 2222 or by visiting the Force
website at

If the sighting is of an innocent nature it can be validated. Being vigilant can stop crime.




Read all about it!

Since 2003, Great Bowden Heritage and Archaeology Group has been collecting evidence to illustrate the life
and times of the village before the Norman Conquest. We have built a picture from digs, field walking,
metal detection, local records and wider history, compiling three booklets to give you a flavour of the
village in those times.

Free copies have been donated to local schools, but there is a charge to the public to contribute towards printing costs.

£2.50 per booklet or a set of three for £5 

Contact Liz Thomas on 01858 466003







A History of Great Bowden School

A very interesting history of our school from 1839-2009 with archive material and photographs leading through to live memories and the present day.

To order a copy please click on the image below to view application form.

Books cost £6 (Book £5.00 + £1.00 P&P)

Great Bowden School - A History 1839 to 2009

All proceeds go to the School and the Great Bowden Historical Society.



Lorries Using Village Centre

It is noticeable that heavy lorries are continuing to use the village as a through-route and in particular ignoring the lorry restriction on Dingley Road. The only way for the village to make an impact on this problem is to complain and the more people that do so the better the effect.

All that is required is to provide in written form to the Police Inspector, MH Police Station is a short note providing:
Date/time of incident
Description of lorry: type / colour of vehicle, owners name and if possible the registration number.
Direction of Travel: from or to Corby
Road being used: particularly Dingley Road




Station Road Great Bowden

View up Station Road

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* Great Bowden Village Festival 2012 - PAGE includes Gallery of events



Electoral Division

The electoral division of Market Harborough East is made up of the following district wards. Market Harborough Great Bowden and Arden ward and Little Bowden ward.

Leicestershire Census 2011 - Key Statistics

(pdf format) Download key statistics for the electoral division. Market Harborough East electoral division  





The Village Web site

Great Bowden’s village web site was created by volunteers.

Information has been provided by groups and individuals within the village as well as suggestions which have
shaped it into the web site we have today. hopes to provide information on groups and services within the village as well as information or links to, travel, tourism etc which may be of use. The much loved Village Newsletters are also available to view.

News items on meetings and events may be submitted to the details below for inclusion.

We endeavour to ensure the information on the site is up to date and accurate but if you do discover that there is a broken link or an error with information provided, please do let us know so that it can be addressed.

Contact us here or email



Documents available to download on this site are saved in PDF format. You will need Adobe Reader to view them. Click the link below to download the software.

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