This year the annual Harvest Festival, normally a very popular event in the Royal Oak, is having to change because of Covid. We will however still celebrate the Harvest and in doing so raise money for both St Editha's Church and the Church Eaton Village Institute.
The details are on the leaflet and your participation would be very welcome.
Church Eaton is a small pleasant village in central Staffordshire with a population of about 500. It consists of a main street with a few cul-de-sacs and some houses on the five roads that lead into the village. The main public buildings are the 12th century St Editha's Church, the Village Institute, the School, and the Royal Oak Pub. Details of these and their associated activities can be found on this web-site.
The houses vary greatly in size, style and age, from the large 18th century "Old Rectory" and the 15th century "Smithy Cottage", to the modern houses of St Editha's Court and the Council houses of the Oaklands. There are two main public open spaces. The Playground at the west end of the village, which offers equipment and exercise space for small children, teenagers and adults; and the Glebelands Sports field where Cricket, Tennis and informal games are played.
The village has done well in the Calor Community Villages competition, which is based on the local activities and support for the residents rather than the physical appearance of the place. One aspect is the annual Village Festival, which is done by and for Church Eaton. It offers many attractions such as a Procession, Open gardens, Entertainments, Artists Fair, Refreshments, Children's events and the ever popular Scarecrows. This brings in large crowds and raises money to support groups and buildings in the village.
Church Eaton usually does well in the "Best Kept Village" competitions and most residents take pride in the appearance of their properties and are prepared to assist in keeping the public spaces neat and tidy. This is one reason why estate agents refer to us as a "popular location".
The Shop and Post office, as well as most of the old pubs, are now closed, which means there are no sales outlets locally. However, we are well served by deliveries of Milk, Newspapers, Groceries, (ordered on line, or by phone), Oil, Gas and Coal. Window Cleaners, Gardeners, catalogue salespeople and a variety of tradesmen who operate locally. There is a daily postal delivery and two collections from the post box. The bus service has recently been restored. It is limited, but it is supplemented by the 'Rural Link' minibus, which connects local villages to the main routes.
Facilities such as small shops, post offices, doctors, dentists, vets, opticians, pharmacies, petrol, chip shops, and Indian or Chinese Takeaways are available in Gnosall, Haughton, and Wheaton Aston; all under three miles away. The major towns of Stafford, Newport, and Penkridge are within 10 miles and they offer wider shopping choices, markets, entertainment and links to the rail network.
There are groups in the village for Toddlers, Dog training, Tennis, Cricket, Badminton, Local History, Gardening, Natural History, a Youth Club, Church youth groups, Tea and Chat for the elderly. Social events are held at the Institute and the Pub, as well as many occasional events, like children's parties and concerts. If you feel like eating out, the Royal Oak now offers a wide range of meals. Newcomers are encouraged to participate and assist with any or all of these activities as the people are what makes a Village.
Overall, Church Eaton offers both a local community with lots going on and the countryside two minutes away for walking, cycling, horse riding or even boating on the nearby Shropshire Union Canal. It is only half an hour by car from the major conurbations of Telford, West Midlands and The Potteries, but the feeling is very rural and we can see the stars at night. As long as you can cope with: narrow lanes, noisy donkeys and sheep, no mobile phone signal, a church clock that chimes every 15 minutes, cockerels that make alarm clocks unnecessary and the occasional flood; it's a great place to be.