Monday 16 July 2018


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Pniel Female Farmer wins SABF award

Mbalie Zamisa (SBF) and Claudia Williams

Pniel entrepreneur, Claudia Williams, was recognised at a prestigious event at the Birchwood Hotel in Johannesburg on 5 June. The SAB Foundation Tholoana Enterprise Development Programme annual awards ceremony recognised seven entrepreneurs who are creating jobs in their regions. Just two years ago, this remarkable woman started off as the only employee in her own company. Due to her remarkable growth, she now employs 18 staff members.

2018 Bellingham wines built to last

Bellingham Chief Winemaker Richard Duckitt

Harvest 2018 is complete and Richard Duckitt, Chief Winemaker at Bellingham is enjoying a momentary reprieve.

The Cape’s devastating drought played a dominant role in this year’s harvest: the Winelands were declared a disaster area and the outlook at the start of the vintage wasn’t a positive one. A plunge in yields was to be expected, but this fear was compounded with the effect the drought would have on quality – as lack of water during the critical veraison period can affect berry composition, and in particular sugar accumulation and concentration.

New Huguenot Memorial Museum Manager

Anita van der Merwe

The Huguenot Memorial Museum has a new manager. Anita van der Merwe (nèè Du Preez) has taken over the reins from Elvira Johannes who was transferred to the Paarl Museum during 2017.

Anita has more than 20 years’ experience in the cultural sphere, during which time she worked in several parts of the country. She obtained a Bachelor’s degree in Library and Information Science from Stellenbosch University as well as a post-graduate qualification in Museum Studies. Her MA degree dissertation dealt with Cultural Landscapes.

She joined the Western Cape’s Department of Cultural Affairs and Sport in 1997; initially as the Visual Art Genre developer in the Art and Culture section and later as a Heritage Researcher with a focus on geographic names – role she still fulfils.

Anita is a passionate garagiste winemaker and, fittingly, a French Huguenot descendent. She says she is excited by the opportunities offered by her new position and looks forward to becoming a part of the Franschhoek community and its activities.

New uniforms for FHS first netball team

Amy Kleinhans (left) and Alrishka Macaskill (right) with the FHS first netball team in their new uniforms.

Franschhoek High School’s first netball team is going into the netball season with brand new uniforms thanks to the generosity of Terbodore Coffee Roasters and a little help from local resident Amy Kleinhans.

Amy’s housekeeper, whose daughter plays for the team, approached her to help find a sponsor for new uniforms as their old ones were in a dire state. Amy approached Michael Macaskill and the team at Terbodore Coffee Roasters and they immediately came on board as the anchor sponsor for the new uniforms.

On 24 April the team and their coach met with Amy and Alrishka Macaskill to enjoy a coffee at the Big Dog Café and to show off their new uniforms. Their coach says the new uniforms are motivating the team to do well this season.

Cricket final goes down to the wire

Pniel Primary and Bridge House Prep faced each other in the final of the Groot Drakenstein Games Club’s Under-12 Cricket Tournament.

The Groot Drakenstein Games Club’s Under-12 Cricket Tournament, after eight weeks of round-robin, quarter and semi-finals, resulted in a very apt final between Bridge House Prep and Pniel Primary.

Petite and Pretty

Sarah Eichler, Miss Petite South Africa 2018

Sarah Ruth Eichler (8) who lives outside Franschhoek on the R301 was recently crowned Miss Petite South Africa 2018 in Pretoria. In May next year she is invited to attend the Little Miss Universe pageant in Turkey.

This is how it happened. Last year Sarah was selected to represent the Western Cape as a Mr & Miss Junior South Africa 2018 finalist. She was one of nine 7 to 8 year olds from around the country in the Miss Petite age group. At the pageant the contestants were judged in different categories: casual wear, evening wear and interviews, and for fun there was also a themed wear round for which the organisers chose ‘Futuristic Sci-Fi’ as a theme this year. Sarah went as a futuristic ballerina.

New MP in, speaker out?

DA MP James Vos

Stellenbosch has a new DA MP.  James Vos has replaced Andricus van der Westhuizen, who has been assigned to the George constituency. Vos serves as the Shadow Minister of Tourism.

In other political news James Selfe, Chairman of the DA’s Federal Council, confirmed in early May that a large majority of the Stellenbosch Town Council’s DA caucus asked permission to table a motion of no confidence in the council’s speaker, Cllr Donovan Joubert. This permission was granted and according to the Eikestadnuus the motion was to have been tabled at a DA caucus meeting on 16 May.

The big cheese

FLTR: Georgie Visser, Petrina Visser and Rob Visser with Dalewood Cheesery’s recent bevvy of awards. Photo Credit: Andrew Gorman

Dalewood Cheesery is perhaps not that big a business but they compete with the best and they score big. Regularly. At an understated celebration on the farm recently the owners Rob and Petrina Visser hosted some important people who handed over the latest awards. Big ones.

Hands foul? Grab a Th2owel!

Environmentally-friendly Th2owels transform with the addition of a little water

interest was piqued when he came across Th2owels. He met for coffee at The Hoek with Franschhoek resident Irma Borrias – the exclusive distributor of this innovative product.

You’re right if you’ve guessed that it’s a type of towel, but it’s a very special kind of towel that has a neat trick up its sleeve and is much more environmentally friendly than any ordinary towel. A Th2owel starts out looking much like an effervescent tablet – it’s about the same size, flat and white – and something interesting happens when you add water!

New Eat Out role for Margot

Margot Janse

The Eat Out restaurant guide is celebrating its twentieth birthday this year. Along with the celebrations they announced three new additions to the team: Zola Nene, Kholeka Kumalo and our very own Margot Janse.

According to the guide’s publishers, “Margot Janse almost needs no introduction. As a significant figure in developing the local food scene, Janse is best known for her prolific work as the executive chef of The Tasting Room at Le Quartier Français, a position she held until 2017.”

Margot will take on the position of judging convenor of the 2018 Eat Out Mercedes-Benz Restaurant Awards. As the judges will remain anonymous, she will become the face of the judging process that determines the Top 20.

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