The Woodland Barn at Hestercombe Gardens was the scene of a great Valentine's Day party laid on by the"4-40 Volunteers" for the wives and children of 40 Commando Royal Marines. The Staplegrove Village Hall committee had donated £580 to the "4-40 Volunteers" from one of their popular Village Quiz Nights for the 40 Commando families whilst their men were deployed in Afghanistan.
The "4-40 Volunteers" decided that the beautiful Hestercombe Gardens would be an ideal spot for the families to meet. The day was sunny for the 25 children, 15 wives and 12 volunteers, so there was a full programme of games both inside and out, a fantastic tea with cakes and ice cream and Malcolm the Magician to entertain with his balloon shaping and magic show afterwards. There was even a visit from the Pearly King and Queen to grace the proceedings! All the wives received their own Valentines gift and every child went away with a present and a helium balloon.
Sue Burr, founder of "4-40 Volunteers", said "It was such a good afternoon. All the volunteers worked really hard to lay on this party for the wives and families of 40 Commando Royal Marines who really seemed to appreciate a special "do" on Valentine's Day. I would like to say a big thank you to Staplegrove Village Hall Committee for making this possible. It is a really good to see the local community coming together to support our local Royal Marines and their families."