Bridport News Review of the Year 2013: Food banks, blizzards, Broadchurch, chillies, flax and mince pies

Bridport and Lyme Regis News: JANUARY: The Reverend Andrew Evans with some of the collected items for homeless people JANUARY: The Reverend Andrew Evans with some of the collected items for homeless people


THE Bridport food bank scheme Cupboard Love made an urgent appeal for donations as the number of families relying on the scheme increased to 80 people.

BRIDPORT was hit by blizzards in January, forcing road closures and schools to shut as ice warnings remained in place for weeks.

That didn’t stop the hardy souls of Bridport from having fun in the white stuff though.


WEST bay was swarmed with armed police after Rev Philip Ringer, pictured at the scene, saw teenagers with guns near the beach.

It turned out to be a false alarm, as they were actually students on a school film project with imitation guns.

BRIDPORT Arts Centre hosted the exclusive first screening of ITV hit drama Broadchurch, as the writers and producers of the drama wanted to thank the town for their co-operation during the filming MARCH WEST Bay became the focus of a pioneering scientific fishing project which was launched in Lyme Bay as scientists worked to secure sustainable fishing in the area.

A DRUGS raid on a Beaminster business led officers to find a “significant skunk” factory as they found eight plants growing under powerful electric light inside an industrial unit in the village.

SCHOOLS and businesses throughout Bridport raised quite a few laughs in March, as they all tried to do something funny for money in aid of Red Nose Day, APRIL WEST Bay and Bridport enjoyed a tourism boom after fans of Broadchurch – nicknamed ‘Broadies’ – flooded to the town, as the show neared its climax to find who killed Danny Latimer.

THERE was outrage after the Woodlands Trust ordered local volunteers to remove a play area on Allington Hill, after the volunteers had spent years fundraising for the equipment and installing it.


THE clock was turned back at the Woodman Inn in May as the pub held a fundraising evening in the style of a World War II themed evening to help raise money for the Help for Heroes charity.

THIS year’s May Fair on Millennium Green in the town was a huge success, thanks in part to the weather, as crowds enjoyed traditional pastimes and stalls, plus a dog training show and an exhibit of vintage motorcycles.


CARNIVAL Royalty was appointed in June as the judges selected their princesses and prince for the 2013 Bridport Carnival. Daniella Scadding and Sarah Williams were carnival attendants, junior princess was Jennifer Sweet, Carnival Prince was Aiden Cooper and Carnival Princess was Chloe-Amber Cash.

YOUNGSTERS were praised after they worked with Bridport Town Council to make improvements to the town’s skate park.


JULY was the month of the much anticipated re-opening of the Beaminster Tunnel, after it had been closed for more than a year following heavy floods in 2012.

BRIGHT sparks from Bridport Primary School celebrated the opening of their new bike sheds by ‘blinging’ up their bikes.

VOLUNTEERS gathered on the hottest day of the year to spruce up the Borough Gardens in the town, with more than 20 people turning up for the Great Bridport Planting Day.


THOUSANDS braved the bad weather to line the streets for this year’s Bridport carnival in August, with thousands re-emerging the day after to take part in the torchlight procession down to West Bay.

HUNDREDS of wannabe film stars also took to the streets as casting auditions for the film ‘Far From the Madding Crowd’ took place in Bridport, with the film being shot locally in West Bay and nearby Sherborne.


A PETITION backed by the Bridport news to protect on-street parking in Bridport attracted more than 6,000 signatures and helped force a U-turn on the policy from Dorset County Council.

PEOPLE power was the buzz-word for September, after campaigners from the West Bay Community Forum forced the council to say they would remove the pinch point and revert back to a two-way traffic in 2014.

THE Bridport Hat Festival returned to the town as Bucky Doo square was packed out with people wearing weird and wonderful head gear.


THERE was celebration in Powerstock when the village’s primary school reopened after it was closed for two years following a major fire that gutted the building l FLAX making returned to the area after an absence of more than 60 years as part of Beaminster museum’s Heritage Lottery funded project ‘Hanging by a Thread’.


AS part of the No Excuse road safety campaign launched by Dorset Police, the police organised a ‘Surround the Town event’ in November to enforce the campaign, with 88 motorists being arrested for committing road offences.

FUNDRAISING fever gripped the town as organisations raised as much money as they could to help Children in Need.

WEST Dorset chilli grower Joy Michaud managed to grow more than 2,000 super hot chillis off a single plant in November, and possibly earning herself a slot in the Guiness World Records.


TV chef Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall dropped in to judge the mince pies made by youngsters at Beaminster School.

BRIDPORT got into the festive spirit in December with its annual Christmas Cheer festival and late night shopping extravaganza.

Hundreds braved the cold weather to meet Santa and sample what the town had to offer from the stalls.


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