Cookham community news (August 22): gearing up for 13th Gravity Grand Prix

George Roberts

Cookham community news (August 22): gearing up for 13th Gravity Grand Prix

Gearing up for 13th Gravity Grand Prix

One of the most popular events on the Cookham calendar is fast approaching – the Gravity Grand Prix takes place in a matter of days.

A fleet of 25 glorified go-karts will speed through Cookham Dean for the 13th year on Sunday, September 1.

Peter Austen, along with the rest of the organisers from the Cherry Pickers of Cookham Dean, has been working hard all year to deliver another great race day.

He said: “We are hoping, as always, that it’s going to be the biggest and best ever.

“With these things, you spend the whole year planning for it and with two weeks to go you wonder where the time has gone.

“My favourite part of the preparation is when the karts turn up to be checked mechanically, it’s great fun to see.”

According to Peter, this year there are lots of ‘fun’ karts entered, and although he did not want to give too much away, he said the karts based on afunfair ride and a whale are worth looking out for.

Each year the karts vie for the top trophies – awarded to the fastest kart and the best ‘novelty’ kart.

The team are hoping to raise about £15,000 from the event, which will all go to charity.

Each year the majority of the money raised goes to Thames Valley Air Ambulance, and the rest is divided between a handful of charities and organisations nearby.

New this year, the Cherry Pickers have designed a free course map with information on the route and kart teams taking part.

These will be dropped off at every home in Cookham and handed out to spectators onthe day.

The event will take place on Sunday, September 1.

Dance Classes include cha cha cha and ha ha ha's

With Strictly Come Dancing set to start next month, those who want to learn some of the steps need look no further.

Cookham-based dance teacher Penny Bysshe is running weekly beginners’ dance classes from Monday, September 9.

Taking place at St Joseph’s Parish Centre in Cookham Road from 6.30pm-7.30pm, complete novices will be taught the basics of the waltz, quickstep, tango, cha cha cha and more.

More dances will be taught as the class gains in confidence and experience.

Penny said: “Dancing helps keep you fit and healthy in mind and body.

“Dancing to inspiring music gives people a feel-good factor, it makes people smile and they leave their day-to-day worries behind while they are on the dance floor.”

The class costs £7.50 per session.

For those who know the basics, improvers classes start at Pinder Hall in Lower Road on Friday, September 13 at 8pm.

Top tribute to Rock the Manor

A family-friendly music festival is coming to the village at the end of the month.

Rock the Manor takes place at the Odney Club on Saturday, August 31, and could be the perfect opportunity to see off the summer.

Running from noon to 10pm, some top tribute acts will be up on stage showing off their favourite material.

The setlist will include Abba Fever, Rockaoke, Liam as Robbie and The Lionels.

Food and drink will be available on the day, and a Pimms tent will also feature.

Adult tickets cost £15 and children cost £7.50. To book tickets call 01628536064.

Lines are open 9am-5pm Monday to Friday.

Definitive Rat Pack tickets go on sale

Tickets have gone on sale for a concert raising funds for Elizabeth House.

Fans of Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin and Sammy Davis Jr can now buy tickets for the Definitive Rat Pack, taking place at Taplow Court on Friday, November 8 at 7.30pm.

All proceeds from the event will go to Elizabeth House, a day centre for Cookham’s independent elderly residents.

Three of the UK’s top Rat Pack reenactors will recreate the sound, look and spirit of three-fifths of the original group.

The concert will be directed by musician and impresario Toby Cruse.

Tickets cost £25 and can be purchased from Elizabeth House, in Station Hill, The Stationery Depot, in Station Road, or online from

Yesteryear hits at swing dance special

Fans of the best dance tracks of yesteryear are in for a treat at an upcoming swing dance special.

All the best vintage tunes from the 30s, 40s and 50s will be playing at Pinder Hall in Lower Road on Saturday, September 7.

Doors open at 7.15pm, with a swing dance class for beginners from 7.30pm-8.15pm.

The dancing itself gets started at 8.15pm.

Tickets cost £8 from or £10 on the door.


TODAY (Thrusday): Playball at Cookham Rise Methodist Church, Lower Road. 9.30am-11am.

Sunday: Final day of the Cookham Arts Club Exhibition at Pinder Hall, Lower Road. 10am-5pm.

Evening prayer (said) at Holy Trinity Church, Cookham. Church Gate.

Monday: Diddy Disco at Cookham Rise Methodist Church, Lower Road. 9.30am-11.30am.

Rainbow Guides at Cookham Rise Methodist Church, Lower Road. 5.40pm-6.40pm.

Yoga: Yoga at Cookham Rise Methodist Church, Lower Road. 7pm-8.30pm.

Tuesday: Arts Club at Cookham Dean Village Hall, Church Road. 2pm.

Dance Class at Cookham Rise Methodist Church, Lower Road. 4pm-5pm.

Big Band practice at Cookham Rise Methodist Church, Lower Road. 7.30pm-9.30pm.

Wednesday: These Mums Can Fitness class with creche at Cookham Rise Methodist Church, Lower Road. 10am-11am.

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