Hungerford Town Council Update March/April 2019

These notes incorporate some but not all of the matters discussed at the Full Hungerford Town Council (HTC) Meeting on 1 April 2019, the agenda for which can be found here. Any references below to ‘the meeting’ refer to this event unless specified otherwise. The official minutes of the meeting will in due course be found on the HTC site. See the foot of this post for more information. WBC = West Berkshire Council.

For HTC updates from previous months, please visit the archives here.


A representative of the Thames Valley Police addressed the meeting on the subject of the Pubwatch scheme. This is a secure app-based scheme which enables participating licensees to communicate immediately with each other, and the police, in order to report any trouble-makers or other problems. It has been trialled in Newbury with great success. There is a cost of £50 per licensed premise and a small administration cost. The latter is required because experience has shown that the system only works if it is owned by a local group (such as the town council or chamber of commerce) as otherwise it tends to reply on one publican who might move on. The amount of administration work is minimal and mainly involves convening, providing agenda for and taking minutes of meetings, which typically happen quarterly.

HTC felt that this was an excellent initiative and one which it would happy to support in this way.

For more information on the police presence in and around the town, please click here.

To read a recent interview with Matthew Barber, the Deputy Police and Crime Commissioner for the Thames Valley, please click here.

Hungerford Town Council Grants 2019

Applications can now be received for these. The application deadline is Wednesday 1 May 2019.

Hungerford Town Council operates an annual grants scheme whereby grants are awarded to local organisations offering services to Hungerford residents.  Applications are now invited for this year’s scheme.  Grants are usually awarded in May/June with an awards ceremony taking place in July. HTC administers its grants scheme via The Good Exchange website and encourages all applications to be made in this way in order to be considered for matched funding.

Another benefit of applying online is that other funders will also be able to consider donating to your cause. If you are unable to make an application online, paper application forms available for collection from Hungerford Town Council office.

For details of the grant awards made in 2018 and the many useful purposes to which the funds were put by the recipients, please click here.

The Mayor’s activities

The Mayor’s activities in March included attending, as well as a full council meeting, the Annual Hungerford Town Meeting and a number of committee meetings, the WBC District Parish Conference, the Town and Manor Community awards, the Mayor of Thatcham’s end-of-term reception, the Armed Forces Day meeting, the High Sheriff’s Awards Evening, a heath and safety walk around at St Lawrence’s Chursh and a meeting with GWR.

Hungerford 2036 (Neighbourhood Development Plan) update

Work continues on the Hungerford 2036 neighbourhood development plan. As mentioned before, the stage has now been reached when the aims and objectives have been established and residents have their chance to comment on these. You can click here to visit the main H2036 page on the Town Council’s website (the most recent additions are at the bottom). The aims and objectives can be found here. If you want to make a comment on this or any other aspect of the work, you can comment online by clicking here. There is also a general comment form for those who prefer to work offline which you can print, complete and return it to the town office. You can also email any comments to [email protected]. The H2036 team will also be hosting or attending a number of events around the town over the next couple of months (dates and venues to be confirmed) which will also give people to opportunity to ask questions and make any comments, verbally or in writing.

To be kept informed please click on this link and scroll down to the foot of the page to sign up to the Hungerford 2036 mailing list.

Hungerford Youth Council

Meetings and discussions have taken place over the last month or so with a view to setting up a Youth Council in Hungerford but this is still at an embryonic stage. For more information, see the separate article here {LINK TO BQ’s ARTICLE WHEN PUBLISHED}

‘Welcome to Hungerford’ Signs

Councillor Martin Crane told the meeting that all matters had now been agreed with WBC and the Great West Way and that it was hoped that these would be installed at three locations in the town soon.

Hungerford Trade Showcase 2019

It was confirmed at the meeting that the third such event – which aims to demonstrate the employment opportunities that exist in Hungerford – will take place on Wednesday 16 October 2019, at John O’Gaunt School. If you wish to get involved in this in any way or for more information, please contact [email protected].

The Town Meeting 2019

This took place in the Corn Exchange on Wednesday 20 March and followed a different format from previously, more like an exhibition than a public meeting with a number of stalls for various groups. These included HTC’s various committees, the Hungerford 2036 team, the Chamber of Commerce, the Town and Manor, the Police, WBC, The Hungerford Allotment-holders’ Association, the Youth Council and Smarten up Hungerford. The intention, as the Mayor said at the February Council meeting, is that the event be ‘more relaxed, friendly and inclusive’.

“We were delighted with how it went,’ Mayor Helen Simpson said afterwards. ‘‘The new format was a great success as it gave people a chance to find out more about what interested or concerned them, not merely listen to speeches about what the council felt was important. With a few tweaks, we’ll aim to do the same next year.”

You can read a report of the event here – this includes a brief video and a number of comments sent to the Mayor supporting this change of style.

The Freedom of the Town 2019

At the meeting, the Freedom of the Town was awarded to the  following

Chris Buck. As well as being a church organist at St Lawrence’s, Chris also organises concerts at the church and elsewhere to help raise funds for a variety of local groups, assists at the ABC toddler group and organises the church’s annual flower festival.

Peter Harries. As well as being a former Town Councillor and serving two terms as Mayor, Peter has also been actively involved in a number of local charities and community groups over the years. These include CHAIN, the Kennet & Avon Canal and the Bowls Club. He is also a trustee for the Hungerford Library & Community Trust.

Ted Angell. Ted is a Trustee and the Handybus Co-ordinator for CHAIN.  The Handybus is a community minibus whose services are primarily directed at those who are less mobile or socially isolated. As well as bring a volunteer driver, he was also instrumental in the recent successful bid for funds for a new bus.

Lorries at One Stop in Fairview Road

A reminder that no definite progress had been made with the long-running problem of large lorries making deliveries to the the One Stop in Fairview Road, sometimes during school hours. It was confirmed at the meeting in February that no laws were being broken and that the only document governing this matter is a voluntary code of conduct (more honoured in the breach than the observance) with Tesco, which makes the deliveries. All in all, the One Stop manager, HTC, WBC and the Police are all equally powerless in the matter. Only the department of Tesco which organises the deliveries can address this situation.

One suggestion for people who are concerned about the problem is to contact Tesco directly. The number to call for this is 0800 50 5555; the the email is [email protected]; and the mailing address is Tesco Customer Service Centre, Baird Avenue, Dundee, DD1 9NF.

The Great West Way

Councillor Martin Crane confirmed that the promotion of Hungerford as an ambassador town under this new tourism project had now started.

The GWW brochure which includes an advertisement for Hungerford will be available any day now.

For more information on the Great West Way generally, please click here.

Car parking and the railway station

Discussions continue between HTC and other parties about the new car-parking arrangements at the station. For more information, and the background to these issues, please see this article (which was updated on 2 April 2019).

Hungerford in Bloom 2019

Hungerford Town Council (HTC) is aiming to build on the previous success of its annual Hungerford in Bloom competition and to encourage a well-supported and colourful competition in 2019. HTC is working closely with the ‘Smarten Up Hungerford’ campaign to avoid overlap and duplication and has the support of Hungerford Chamber of Commerce.

This year’s competition will include more categories for domestic entries such as a hanging basket/container, a category for volunteer gardens and, as in previous years, a commercial premises category. HTC would also like to encourage our Hungerford Schools to enter the competition and have included a ‘Schools’ category for you. Anyone who is interested in entering the competition please see the entry form for more details.  All entries, whether a hanging basket, window box or your complete garden will be very welcome and will all contribute to the attractiveness of our town as well as to a successful competition.

A printable copy of the entry can be found here. A hard copy can be obtained from the HTC office. The closing date for the competition is Monday 24 June 2019 and judging day will be Saturday 6 July 2019.

The Hungerford Allotment Holders Association (HAHA) is also taking part in the competition. For contact details for the HAHA competition, please contact Ted Angell on 07798 886 597 or [email protected].

New email addresses for councillors

A reminder that all councillors now have email addresses with the format [email protected] and the contact list on the HTC website has been amended to reflect this. Please henceforth use these email addresses for any communications with councillors on municipal matters.

Council elections in May 2019

In May 2019, all the HTC councillors will resign their seats and may, if they wish, stand again. In most town and parish councils, the number of applicants is fewer than the number of available seats and so these are filled by co-option. It is HTC’s hope that in 2019 there will be more candidates than seats, which will result in an election. As well as attracting new people into municipal life and increasing awareness of the vital work that HTC performs, this will encourage debate about what projects the council should concentrate on and how it might change any of the ways in which it operates.

Anyone wishing to stand will need to complete a nomination form: these are available from the HTC office and on WBC’s website.  Once completed, the form must be delivered by hand to the WBC offices in Newbury no later than 4pm on Wednesday 3 April.

The official notice of the election will be issued on 15 March. From this date a period of Purdah space will apply, which prevents councils from making announcements about initiatives which might be seen as advantageous to a particular political party.

Planning matters

Councillor Farrell reported at the meeting that the approval had been granted by WBC for the Coffee#1 application (on the corner of Everland Road and the High Street) but that there was no further information available on the proposal for a similar outlet at the old Kaleidoscope site on the High Street.

The application for the development on the Oakes Bros site near the station has also been submitted to WBC but there is so far no firm indication as to when work will start. (See also the post about parking near the railway station here).

Councillor Martin Crane said at the meeting that he was trying to establish the current ownership of the former NatWest site in the High Street but that this had been complicated and delayed by a change of management company.

Committee meetings

For more information on the work of HTC’s committees, please click here. For a full calendar of committee meetings, please click here.

The minutes of these (and other) meetings are available on the HTC website now or will be soon.


The sections above cover some of the issues with which Hungerford Town Council has recently been involved or concerned: it by no means describes all of the Council’s activities.

For more information on Hungerford Town Council, please click here.

If there’s anything that you’d like to see addressed by Hungerford Town Council, and perhaps also covered in this way in future editions of Penny Post Hungerford, please email [email protected]. Any such suggestions should be received at least four working days before the end of the month (and preferably sooner) if they are to be included in the corresponding post for the following month. That is not, of course, to say that the Council will not in any case give the matter its attention and respond personally if appropriate.

This information has been compiled by Penny Post from information supplied by Hungerford Town Council and others. Every reasonable effort has been made to provide a clear and dispassionate summary of the points covered but these may contain expressions of opinion which may not accord with Hungerford Town Council’s official view on the particular matter. Links have been provided to other posts, on the Penny Post site or elsewhere, to provide additional information where this has been judged useful or necessary. The presence of such a link should not be taken to imply that Hungerford Town Council necessarily agrees with, endorses or supports any of the material contained therein.


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