Saturday, 13 August 2022

Children learn about nature at fun day in memory of GP

THE third annual Dr Anne Day, held to mark a GP’s contribution to two ecological groups,

THE third annual Dr Anne Day, held to mark a GP’s contribution to two ecological groups, has been hailed a success.

Twenty children, aged six to 11, took part in the family activities day, held in memory of Dr Anne Millar on Tuesday last week.

Dr Millar, who died in October 2013, aged 86, worked in Benson for three decades.

The event was organised by the Benson Nature Group, previously known as the Benson Ecological Study Team, which she helped found, and Ewelme watercress beds nature reserve, where it was held.

The children could try and identify moths caught in an overnight trap with the help of Dr Marc Botham, an ecologist from the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology in Crowmarsh Gifford, before their safe release. The other activities included a treasure trail, photo competition, boat-making, followed by a boat race, decorating baseball caps and a bird quiz. This was followed by a barbecue lunch and prize-giving.

Tom Stevenson, chairman of the nature group, said: “Dr Anne was really a great inspiration to both groups. I thought it was brilliant and the kids enjoyed it. It’s to inspire the children, but also to give them a bit of education and get them interested in what’s outside their door rather than what’s on their computer.”

Dr Millar moved to Benson in 1953 with her husband Andrew. At the time she had a young family but started working in the practice in Mill Lane as an assistant in the mid-Sixties. For the next 20 years all medical services in Benson were run from the family home.

In 1970 the Dorchester Partnership split up and the main practice moved to Berinsfield. The couple became partners in the new practice in Benson.

After her husband died in 1982, Dr Millar continued to practise for another eight years, during which time she helped to plan and build the new Mill Stream Surgery in the village.

Dr Millar also served on Benson Parish Council after her retirement from medicine and helped with the planning of the new parish hall. The council named Millar Close in the village after her.

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