Diary on the creation of £The Parish of Westoning Chronicle 2002£

This dairy was kept by Henry Jennings throughout the project and written up in its present form in December 2002. The Book originally proposed to the Westoning Parish Council on 25th October 2000 and published on 1st November 2002. It is given here as general interest and as a guide to anyone who may be thinking of undertaking a similar project

Year 2000

25 Oct

Original letter sent to Westoning Parish Council (PC) by Henry Jennings (HJ) regarding whether the parish should produce and publish its own history.

13 Dec

Above letter read out to parish council
  (HJ awaiting developments for 4 weeks)

Year 2001

10 Jan

Henry Jennings invited to attend PC to discuss possibilities
HJ decides to get the project going and become editor, contributor and general bottle washer


Volunteers requested in newsletter £Westoning on Sunday£
(HJ awaiting developments for 8 weeks)

17 April

Phone call from John Read, the Clerk to PC, to HJ with list of 3 people who might be interested in helping

Thurs 26 April

1st Group Meeting at Village Hall after the advert in parish newsletter £Westoning on Sunday£ and enquiries, meeting with the following residents who want to contribute to the project:-

Kerry & Judith Goodman, Claire Hoare, Rob Jellis, Kathy & James Bedforth 

The book group was joined shortly afterwards by Dave Williamson and later on in the year by Ken Bacon & Stuart Kitchiner 

After April, group started to get information, sort out chapters 

HJ contacted Mrs. Cain, Mr. Bradshaw, Stan Short and people of the parish for information etc

23 May
2nd group meeting at Village Hall ...deciding who does what chapter, area of interest, information already available etc

All through summer and autumn group gathering information and HJ started to edit the book into chapters and general layout, started to collect and collate photographs, newspaper article sect

HJ went to Bedford Central Library, County Hall Ref Library. HJ writing to interested parties for approval to use material, photographs for book etc

29 June
3rd group meeting at Village Hall £Group clarifying work still to be done.
Preparing the first rough draft
HJ starts visits to John Read, Clerk to Westoning PC, in putting together the group£s book chapters£without photo inserts at this stage

Year 2002

3 January
Book Group meeting at The Bell to distribute the first rough draft to the group for them to read through corrects and give feed back to Henry Jennings
2 to 20 March
Text checked by HJ£. approx 130 text pages (sides)

Group meeting at Village Hall for HJ to show photographs etc. Inputs from Group as to preferred layouts in book and indicate their positions relative to text etc

Looks like 200 page book£ incl. 17 maps, index etc

(An interesting initial estimate£ as the book was in the end 208 pages, 17 map, 8 coloured pages and an index of approx 700 entries)

Ready now for PC to decide who is be the printer and the financial aspects of the book which will be their responsibility

HJ got own 2 estimates approx. £4000 for initial 400 soft back copies and then cheaper for subsequent runs thereafter

25 March
PC, with info from John Read, decided on Davis Armstrong (D A) at Bedford to undertake responsibility for the final stages of production of book. He will be the intermediary who will liaise with the printers (from Leicester??)
Went to see D A and gave him text and the photos...layout plans
6 May
Went to see DA and his proof reader John Plummer at Bedford to discuss books requirements and start to go through the first proofs etc
No personal activity...awaiting info from DA
8 June
HJ sent letter to Chairman PC with ideas on what should be done to promote book in the future web site, articles, publicity, promotion etc
1 July
HJ received first 3 chapters for checking £rough drafts from DA
8 July
Completed check of text £.15 chapters
17 July
HJ received back the final printer£s proofs for text only for approval
19 July/1 August

DA on holiday

(Project on hold for three weeks)

11 August

HJ took back proofs to DA

(HJ sent article to Bedfordshire County Life Magazine (CLM) for autumn 2002 Issue on John Bunyans Association with Westoning£plus info on forthcoming book.

Its editor Alan Humphrey£s wants to publish article on Victorian Childhood by Elizabeth Higgs in his Winter Issue due out 11 Dec 2002.

Activated web site for Westoning, advertising forthcoming book, general information, inserting info not used in the book. Possibility of putting past issues of Westoning on Sunday on this web page. The webmaster for the site is Nathan Zipfel at Kempston who has been most helpful in getting and keeping the web site up to date)

30 August £ 6 Sept
HJ received and returned to DA the Printers Proofs, text and photos for Chapters 1 to 9£wrote captions for photos etc
18 Sept
Bedfordshire County Life Magazine Autumn Issue on sale with HJ article on John Bunyan...2 pages, text & photos & map£printed as agreed
20 Sept?
PC arranged a meeting to view final proofs of the book, discuss final financial arrangements and the number of books to be ordered £ (but forgot to inform the editor (HJ)!!)
26/30 Sept

HJ received, checked and returned to DA; Chapters 9 to 15, Printers Proofs with photos plus appendix £HJ completed Index plus appendix 3; both submitted to DA

4 Oct

HJ checking 8 pages of coloured photographs for centre of book £checked & returned

6 Oct

HJ sent Bedfordshire County Life Magazine all the info asked for on Victorian Childhood for its next Winter, 17 Dec 2002 issue

HJ sent to a local free newspaper £The Fuddler£ information for its 11 November 2002 issue on details of our forthcoming book £The Parish of Westoning Chronicle 2002£

17 Oct

HJ received and checked Text, maps, photos from DA

(Some pages missing / index / appendix)

19 Oct

D.A. delivered to Hillcrest all the rest of the text sheets, photos etc

H J completed all the outstanding items and D A was then in the position to be able to take back with him all the completed sheets for the book

££AND THIS IS THE END£FINISH £.of the project after nearly 2 years ( i.e. the initial enquiry about a Westoning Parish Book was 25 Oct 2000 )

..Or is it I wonder???

This should now almost complete job for HJ????!!!!

Odds & Ends £Return of all photos etc required now from David Armstrong

Launch date of book was

Original target 31 August 2002

2nd shot 30 September

3rd shot 31 October 20002£.we will see!!

20 Oct
Sent letter to Brian Golby re Mid Beds County Councillor to get support in recognizing John Bunyans Farm Cottage site. It all moves very slowly. Sent letter to Beds CC and English Heritage Norwich
21 Oct
BIG DAY >>>David Armstrong informs me that THE BOOK has started to get PRINTED in Leicester
31 Oct

HJ received a complementary hard cover copy from David Armstrong

Soft cover copies now on sale at The Bell pub

1 Nov

HJ went and sold books to Bedford Central Library and at Flitwick, Ampthill and Toddington Libraries Flitwick Library

8 Nov

Got books for Charlotte, Simone, Mark & Karen

Soft £15, Hard £30

11 Nov

PC informed HJ that 30 Hardback covers have been sold

HJ received all photos etc back from David Armstrong and (hopefully!) has now returned them all to their rightful owners!

Parish Council has bought 250 Soft, 50 Hard and 100 awaiting covers depending on demand

15 Nov

All 50 hardbacks sold, ordered 50 more

150 soft sold

28 Nov

Following Andy Rayment contact HJ interviewed on the BBC 3 Counties Radio by John Pilgrim about the book for 10 minutes.

Made tape recording £plugged the book for all its worth£got him to seriously consider to do an Out and About radio program by visiting Westoning early sometime in the New Year 2003

[IDEAS for the BBC 3 Counties radio programme to be broadcast in early 2003.

1. Introduction: - Meet at the Bell and interview PC officials Richard Roberts, Andy Rayment & John Read£. using the recently published Westoning Chronicle for an initial overview of the parish

2. Visit the 3 Religious establishments and their respective officials

3. Visit present day Westoning Manor and Grounds

3. Visit the 3/5 public houses

4. Visit John Bunyans Farm Cottage and Tree clearly showing John Pilgrim its outlook and the information about the site in John Brown£s book about John Bunyan.

5. Tour of parish/village£.today£s traffic situation and future development of the parish]

30 Nov
Total sales approx 250
8 Dec

Total sales approx 400...in six weeks!!£i.e. all of original order now allocated.

HJ trying to get PC to get more copies from David Armstrong, who had obtained for himself some extra copies over our own original order of 400. PC seems very reluctant to-do this. PC indicated that all future sales were to be made through the County Bookshop in Bedford£.HJ indicated to Richard Roberts that he thought that such an arrangement, so early after the book had been made published and just before Xmas, would be a most unreasonable situation for many of the residents of our parish who still wanted to purchase the book.

11 Dec

HJ received, corrected and returned the proofs from Alan Humphrey£s for the Winter issue of his The Bedfordshire County Life Magazine, due out 16 December 2002. The article is related very closely to the Miss Elizabeth Higgs memoirs that were put in the Westoning Chronicle.; only in this case he will spread the memoirs over the next two issues due to its length.

16 Dec
Await report from John Read as to what went on at the last PC meeting, i.e. 11 Dec , as to how/where further sales for Xmas are to be made available for the residents of the parish.