Marlborough Area Weekly News sections – 2022 archive

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To see the current Marlborough & Surrounding Area Weekly News section, please click here.

Please note that this section is presented as an archive of past columns and is not updated. Some web links may no longer be active (usually indicated by a score-through), for instance when draft parish council minutes are replaced by adopted ones or when a consultation has closed.

Click here for the 2023 archive

Click here for the 2024 archive

Thursday 15 December 2022

This week we have a disco, a sing-along, road closures, fly tipping and horses. We also take a look back at some of the stories we’ve covered in the area over the last 12 months (many of which are unfinished business) – plus our usual round-up of other local news, local events and activities and news from your local councils.

This week’s news

• Father Christmas is coming to the Ramsbury Royal British Legion for a Disco on Tuesday 20 December from 3.30pm to 5.30pm. A £3 entry fee includes a present from Father Christmas and a hot dog. All children must be accompanied by an adult and the bar will be open.  Tickets are for sale at both the Legion and  Post Office

• If you are feeling lonely and fancy a sing song to meet local people in a similar situation join the Sing A-Long and Social Group, to have a bit of fun exercising those vocals or have a chat over a cuppa and biscuits. Starting from Tuesday 10 January 2023, this group will be meeting weekly, from 6.00 – 7.00 pm in St Mary’s Hall in Silverless Street, Marlborough.

• A New Yoga studio YogaWolf is opening in Marlborough on Wednesday 4 January. They look forward to your presence on the mat for the New Year.

• Rick Stein restaurant in Marlborough is offering a series of Charity Lunches from January 16 to January 29 from 12 to 3pm. A 3 course lunch will cost £19.95, plus a £2.50 donation in support of Love Marlborough Kids Meals. See here for booking, menu and full details.

• The Guardian has listed Marlborough in the top ten of the country’s best independent high streets in Britain. Author Annabelle Thorpe, she describes the town as, “A jumble of Tudor buildings, historic merchants’ houses and Georgian mansions create a charming backdrop to an array of independent stores and boutiques, scattered along one of the country’s widest high streets.   

• Marlborough & District Lions Club will be inviting Father Christmas to the Pewsey Co-Op on Saturday 17 December, to Marlborough High Street on Thursday 22 December and on Christmas Eve at Tesco in Marlborough.

• If you are struggling to meet the financial demands of living then please do get in touch with the charity PCA . PCA’s mission is all about helping to keep the community fed, with Foodshare (when there’s surplus food), the Community Meals team delivering home cooked meals in and around Pewsey, and BURP (Basic Universal Resource Plan) supplying food and household goods (packed and delivered) to households who are otherwise struggling  to get food on their tables.They also run a community market on Saturdays where you can pick up fresh fruit and veg for a donation if you can. Please do get in touch on 01672 487022

• Marlborough West Wiltshire Councillor Jane Davies was relieved and happy to confirm that the Council had agreed “that there won’t be any further weekend road works between now and the New Year in Marlborough, thus enabling residents and visitors to enjoy the shops and cafes.”

• Marlborough Town Council has announced that there will be temporary overnight road closures on the A346 in Aldbourne and Ogbourne St George; from its junction with Lower Upham Farm Road for a distance of approximately 1.7km in a southerly direction. Maintenance work will be carried out for 4 nights from 16 December from 7pm to 6am. For an alternative route travel via A346 (unaffected length) – M4 – A338 – Bath Road – A4 – London Road – Herd Street – Port Hill – A346 (unaffected length) and vice versa. The closure and diversion route will be clearly indicated by traffic signs.

• Wiltshire Council is cracking down on fly tipping because it spoils the countryside and costs taxpayers money to clean up dumped rubbish.  If you need to get some stuff moved you can check on the Environment agency link on the post below to see if the operator is legal.  There are big fines for illegal operators and the people who pay them. For more information please click here.      

• Wiltshire libraries have officially become warm spaces for people this winter, providing a warm and friendly welcome to support anyone who needs help through the cost of living crisis.which includes Marlborough Library. Hot drinks, where possible will be available and warm packs for anyone who would benefit from some free essentials.For more details, contact your local library, email libraryenquiries@wiltshire.gov.uk or click here.

Greatwood Charity is looking for help in supporting the winter costs of the horses that they care for, which reaches over £500 a week. £17.50 would pay for a bag of Dodson & Horrell feed, they use 5 bags a day. £45 would pay for a bale of haylage, they use 5 bales a week £45 would pay for a bale of straw, they use six bales a week. Any amount you can give will support our horses through the winter, and help us prepare for the challenges we might face in 2023.

Marlborough Town Council is inviting tenders to provide and install a new and refreshed play area at Wye House Gardens in Marlborough. For further details please see here.

• St Peter’s Church in Marlborough is now open to the public as a warm space 10am to 4pm Monday to Saturday. Do please join them for a hot drink with biscuits and cake – a warm welcome awaits you.

Marlborough Town Council is offering free holiday camps for kids Reception to Year 11 in December. Please follow this link for details

• Come and share your skills with others, on the first Monday of the month act The Barge Inn on Honey Street from 7.30 pm. Bring your knowledge from computer skills to gardening and embroidery and share with others.

Dogs Trust Marlborough is looking for donations of handbags, men’s shoes, women’s shoes and boots and childrens games for Xmas. Opening times 9 am till 4 pm. Closed Tuesdays and Sundays.

• Quick reminder about Marlborough Town Council’s small grant scheme for local community or charity projects. Applications are considered by the Council at their Finance & Policy Committee Meetings which happen every few months. For more information about how to apply for the grant, visit the Town Council’s website.

Click here for the latest news from the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group about the continuing threat to direct rail services from Bedwyn, Hungerford and Kintbury to London. The struggle is far from over.

Christmas

• Marlborough’s Cards For Good Causes Shop is back in St Peter’s Church selling charity Christmas cards as well as Advent Calendars, Gift Bags and Christmas Wrap. Open Monday to Saturday 10am – 4pm.

Marlborough Town Council is pleased to announce Marlborough Christmas lunch will take place at the Town Hall from 12 noon on Christmas Day. There will be plenty of food, drink, fun and games and lots of Christmas cheer. They have been fortunate enough to receive donations from generous sponsors and therefore the usual charge will be waived this year. If you have any questions or would like any further information please call Vicky on 07717 107623. If you would like to attend, please return a completed form to the Jubilee Centre by the 12 December. Forms are available from the Jubilee Centre.

Slade Tribute Band Slyde will be appearing at The Memorial Hall, Marlborough College on Saturday 17 December at 7.30 pm. Tickets £15 in advance from mantonfest.co.uk and £20 on the door. Outside bar.

A look back…

This will be the last news update of 2022: normal service will be resumed on 5 January 2023.

Over the last year we’ve published a large number of stories about this area. Some have been referred to many, many times: that’s not because we feel the need to re-cycle copy or go over old ground but because the issues themselves have not gone away, have re-surfaced or have, like a mutating virus, acquired new features which need considering.

At the foot of this post you’ll see a link to our archive section (which may in turn link to another one). Searching for any or part of the phrases mentioned in bold below will take you to the often multiple references to these issues. Many of these still have a lot of life left in them and so expect further coverage in 2023.

The two main things that tend to crop up are planning and flooding and/or sewage. These are the kind of things that normally we don’t think about at all: when they’re directly affecting us, however, it’s almost impossible to think about anything else. We’ve lost count of the number of times these have cropped up in our coverage (a few of the major ones are referred to below). Whenever we cover them, and indeed other stories, we try to present as many points of view as possible, explain the issues and provide links for further information.

Matters such as speeding, rights of way, dog mess,, jubilee and coronation festivities and defibrillators are, amongst a host of other things, dealt with by town and parish councils. We provide information on their activities and link to  the most recently available minutes, and provide a summary of these if they are reasonably recent.

We’ll be continuing to cover as many aspects of life in this area as we can in 2023 and beyond, seeking always to inform, explain, comment and (where appropriate) entertain. If there’s anything you’d like to see covered, or if you have anything to say about anything we’ve covered already, please email brian@pennypost.org.uk.

Here’s a brief summary, in no particular order, of some of the recurring stories in this area in 2022. It by no means refers to all the issues we’ve written about.

  • Marlborough’s neighbourhood development plan. This has reached its final stage but a last-minute threatened judicial review in the autumn caused a delay.
  • Access to the Savernake. This has been a simmering issue for some time with some local groups believing that plans to reduce access to the forest may be being introduced by stealth.
  • Transport services. Marlborough has no station (any more), the nearest one being in Bedwyn. We’ve covered the severe curtailment of services from here and also attempts to improve the bus services in the area, including to and from this station.

Community notices

Marlborough Community Fridge, located in the Community Room in the George/Figgins Lane Car Park (just behind the public loos) is free to access, there are no criteria that have to be met and it is a good way to use up surplus food from supermarkets and businesses that would otherwise go to waste. Please see their facebook page for more details.

Love Marlborough Kids is a great community initiative to make sure all Marlborough children have access to free meals during the current crisis and beyond. No fuss, no forms, no referrals. Just meals for families who need them. See here for how to apply.

• Anyone in the Marlborough area wanting to host or support Ukrainian refugees are invited to join this Facebook page: Ukrainians and their sponsors in Marlborough and surrounding areas. Or if you can volunteer to teach English please contact Nastia on nikasling@gmail.com.

Marlborough Fire Station is looking for new on-call recruits, ideally those who live or work within 5 minutes of the station. On-call firefighters are paid but they are not based at the station like full-time firefighters. They can have other jobs and commitments, only responding to emergencies when their alert goes off. Anyone over 18 with a good standard of physical fitness can apply. Please see Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue to find out more and fill out and application.

• For the latest information changes to rail services between Bedwyn, Newbury and Paddington we recommend following the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group.

Local events and activities

For more information on events and activities across the Penny Post area, see the website calendar.

• Dates for the diary

• see news and Christmas sections above

• Regular events

Sustainable Marlborough’s monthly social meet-up on the third Thursday of the month will re-start in January upstairs at Feather Moss Flowers in Hughenden Yard.

Kennet Vale Table Tennis Club at Kennet Valley Hall. Juniors meet on Fridays from 5.45 to 7 pm and they are always on the lookout for adults to play socially or competitively. Call Richard on 07568 648468 to book a space.

Carer Café  at the Jubilee Centre, 28 Marlborough High Street on the fourth Tuesday of the month, from 10:30am to noon. No Booking required. Join in on a relaxed chat over a hot drink with other carers and support workers or volunteers from Carer Support Wiltshire.

Rhyme Time for babies and toddlers, every Wednesday and Friday 11am 11.30am at Marlborough Library. If you don’t already have a library membership, please sign yourself and your child up before you attend.

Great Bedwyn Stay And Play is on Mondays term time 1pm to 2.30pm at Great Bedwyn Village Hall. There are games and free play with lots of themed music to enjoy with your little one. All are welcome. Prices for sessions can be found on their Facebook page.

• The Transition Marlborough Hub Group meet on the second Thursday of the month at 7.30pm currently by zoom. To get involved please email enquiries@transitionmarlborough.org.

• Marlborough Park Run is a free, weekly, timed five km walk, jog or run at 9am every Saturday. Open to all ages and abilities. Organised entirely by volunteers. Click here to see their Facebook page.

The Stroke Association monthly drop-in support sessions at The Jubilee Centre for stroke survivors, their families and carers on Monday mornings. See here for the next date. For more details contact Katie Fielding on 07908 952740 or katie.fielding@stroke.org.uk

• Marlborough Floral Club meets 2pm on the first Thursday of the month at the Mildenhall Village Hall. For details please see here or call Micky Graham on 01672 514301.

The Menopause Matters Marlborough facebook group provides a forum for women in Marlborough and the surrounding areas to access information and support relating to menopause.

The White Horse Bookshop is offering workshops until the end of the year, click here for the full list.

News from your local councils

Note: “the most recent meeting” refers to the most recent one for which minutes (in some cases draft) or some other summary is available. Other meetings may have taken place since. Some councils publish minutes more promptly than do others.

Many councils do not hold meetings in August and many postponed their September meeting following the Queen’s death. 

• The most recent full meeting of Marlborough Town Council for which minutes are available took place on 7 November and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: anti-social behaviour; Police report; a proposed meeting with Homes4Wiltshire and Aster Group “to discuss the issues created by the ongoing sale of social housing stock in the town which was continually reducing supply for local families”; the Savernake explosion memorial; town signage; the cost of living crisis; reports from outside bodies; and the Great West Way.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Town Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for the latest on Marlborough’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Bishopstone and Hinton Parva Parish Council, for which minutes are available took place on 5 December and you can download the minutes here. Items covered included: the parish newsletter; planning matters; an update from the ward member; speeding; the precept; and defibrillators.
To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Wanborough Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 28 November and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: public questions; a report from the ward member; planning matters; highways; Hooper’s Field; village maintenance; and financial matters.
To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas and minutes, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Chiseldon Parish Council for which minutes are available, took place on 14 November and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: actions from the previous meeting; police report; reports from the ward members; speeding; financial matters; committee reports; and footpaths.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Great Bedwyn Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 10 November and you can read the minutes here.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 7 November and you can read the minutes here.

• The most recent meeting of Aldbourne Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 2 November and you can read the minutes here.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for more information on Aldbourne’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Ramsbury & Axford Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 17 October and you can read the minutes here.
To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas and minutes, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St George Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 6 October and you can read the minutes here.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• Click here for a list of current consultations being run by Wiltshire Council.

• Marlborough area council contacts

Parishes: Marlborough Town CouncilAldbourne Parish CouncilRamsbury & Axford Parish Council, Great Bedwyn Parish Council, Savernake Parish Council, Chiseldon Parish Council, Ogbourne St George Parish Council, Wanborough Parish CouncilBishopstone and Hinton Parva Parish Council  and Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council.

Wiltshire Council: click here to visit the website.

News from other areas

Penny Post area – please see the following separate sections: Hungerford area; Lambourn ValleyNewbury area; Thatcham area; Compton & DownlandsTheale area; Wantage area.

News and views from across the area and beyond: please see the most recent Weekly News with Brian column.

 

Thursday 8 December 2022

This week we have roadworks, hot dogs, a raffle, libraries and holiday camps. We also have a look at the Town Council’s summary of the recent town-centre survey, consider a top-ten ranking and identify one indisputable truth about the town  – plus our usual round-up of other local news, local events and activities and news from your local councils.

This week’s news

• Marlborough Town Council has announced that there will be temporary overnight road closures on the A346 in Aldbourne and Ogbourne St George; from its junction with Lower Upham Farm Road for a distance of approximately 1.7km in a southerly direction. Maintenance work will be carried out for 4 nights from 16 December from 7pm to 6am. For an alternative route travel via A346 (unaffected length) – M4 – A338 – Bath Road – A4 – London Road – Herd Street – Port Hill – A346 (unaffected length) and vice versa. The closure and diversion route will be clearly indicated by traffic signs.

• Wiltshire Council is cracking down on fly tipping because it spoils the countryside and costs taxpayers money to clean up dumped rubbish.  If you need to get some stuff moved you can check on the Environment agency link on the post below to see if the operator is legal.  There are big fines for illegal operators and the people who pay them. For more information please click here.

• If you remember novelist Vanesssa LaFaye who ran the Marlborough Community Choir (and sadly died of cancer in 2018), we are discussing her gripping novel At First Light in our zoom Bookends book discussion this Tuesday 13 December.

• Father Christmas is coming to Ramsbury Royal British Legion  for a ‘Kids Christmas Disco Party’ on Tuesday 20 December from 3.30pm to 5.30pm. A £3 entry fee includes a present from Father Christmas and a hot dog. All children must be accompanied by an adult and bar will be open.

• St Katherine’s School in Savernake forest is holding a raffle on Thursday 15 December. Tickets are only £1 each to grab yourself some great prizes and helps raise some money in aid of this wonderful little school. Lend your support at pta-events.co.uk/stkatherines.

• Wiltshire libraries have officially become warm spaces for people this winter, providing a warm and friendly welcome to support anyone who needs help through the cost of living crisis.which includes Marlborough Library. Hot drinks, where possible will be available and warm packs for anyone who would benefit from some free essentials.For more details, contact your local library, email libraryenquiries@wiltshire.gov.uk or click here.

Greatwood Charity is looking for help in supporting the winter costs of the horses that they care for, which reaches over £500 a week. £17.50 would pay for a bag of Dodson & Horrell feed, they use 5 bags a day. £45 would pay for a bale of haylage, they use 5 bales a week £45 would pay for a bale of straw, they use six bales a week. Any amount you can give will support our horses through the winter, and help us prepare for the challenges we might face in 2023.

Marlborough Town Council is inviting tenders to provide and install a new and refreshed play area at Wye House Gardens in Marlborough. For further details please see here.

• St Peter’s Church in Marlborough is now open to the public as a warm space 10am to 4pm Monday to Saturday. Do please join them for a hot drink with biscuits and cake – a warm welcome awaits you.

Marlborough Town Council is offering free holiday camps for kids Reception to Year 11 in December. Please follow this link for details

• Come and share your skills with others, on the first Monday of the month act The Barge Inn on Honey Street from 7.30 pm. Bring your knowledge from computer skills to gardening and embroidery and share with others.

Dogs Trust Marlborough is looking for donations of handbags, men’s shoes, women’s shoes and boots and childrens games for Xmas. Opening times 9 am till 4 pm. Closed Tuesdays and Sundays.

• Quick reminder about Marlborough Town Council’s small grant scheme for local community or charity projects. Applications are considered by the Council at their Finance & Policy Committee Meetings which happen every few months. For more information about how to apply for the grant, visit the Town Council’s website.

Click here for the latest news from the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group about the continuing threat to direct rail services from Bedwyn, Hungerford and Kintbury to London. The struggle is far from over.

Christmas

• Marlborough’s Cards For Good Causes Shop is back in St Peter’s Church selling charity Christmas cards as well as Advent Calendars, Gift Bags and Christmas Wrap. Open Monday to Saturday 10am – 4pm.

• Phoenix Brass together with Marlborough Accordion Orchestra and Marlborough Community Choir presents, ‘Music & Voices for Christmas’ at Marlborough Town Hall on Sunday 11 December at 2.30. Free entry by tickets obtainable from people who are members of music groups or by phoning 01672 841315

Marlborough Town Council is pleased to announce Marlborough Christmas lunch will take place at the Town Hall from 12 noon on Christmas Day. There will be plenty of food, drink, fun and games and lots of Christmas cheer. They have been fortunate enough to receive donations from generous sponsors and therefore the usual charge will be waived this year. If you have any questions or would like any further information please call Vicky on 07717 107623. If you would like to attend, please return a completed form to the Jubilee Centre by the 12 December. Forms are available from the Jubilee Centre.

Slade Tribute Band Slyde will be appearing at The Memorial Hall, Marlborough College on 17 December at 7.30 pm. Tickets £15 in advance from mantonfest.co.uk and £20 on the door. Outside bar.

In the top ten

Marlborough News draws our attention to the results of a recent town-centre survey conducted by Marlborough Town Council, to which about 480 people responded. MN suggests that this is about 5% of the population, whereas such surveys generally get a 1 to 2% response rate. It might actually be better than 5%: presumably, all the people who replied were over 16. About 77.5% of the population of England are in this age range so, assuming Marlborough is typical the response rates among adults is more like 7%. Anyway, these demographic and statistical points aside, it was clearly enough for Marlborough Town Council to come to some conclusions. You can read these here. The first sentence of this says that “the most popular words were friendly, beautiful, historic and market.”

There were also a number of suggestions made, and MTC has divided these into various groups and summarised them. Such questionnaires often result in several people saying that they want to see particular kinds of retail outlets in the town (low-cost retailers and/or clothing shops catering for children and men, in this case). As MTC points out, as other councils have done before them, the Town Council has “no control over what shops come to Marlborough, nor the mix of retail types on the High Street.”

This drawback was not enough to stop Marlborough being listed as have one of the top ten independent high streets in the country in a recent survey published in The Observer and The Guardian. I’m never quite sure how accurate or useful such surveys are and perhaps tell us more about where the journalists who compile them live. Another publication might ten completely different ones. None the less, these all seem both vibrant and photogenic and that’s something to celebrate in these times.

There’s also one further accolade: as Stockton-on-Tees doesn’t feature in the list, it’s also beyond doubt that, of these ten, Marlborough has the widest High Street (Stockton’s is the widest in the country, Marlborough’s the second widest). That’s one claim that certainly cant’t be challenged.

Community notices

Marlborough Community Fridge, located in the Community Room in the George/Figgins Lane Car Park (just behind the public loos) is free to access, there are no criteria that have to be met and it is a good way to use up surplus food from supermarkets and businesses that would otherwise go to waste. Please see their facebook page for more details.

Love Marlborough Kids is a great community initiative to make sure all Marlborough children have access to free meals during the current crisis and beyond. No fuss, no forms, no referrals. Just meals for families who need them. See here for how to apply.

• Anyone in the Marlborough area wanting to host or support Ukrainian refugees are invited to join this Facebook page: Ukrainians and their sponsors in Marlborough and surrounding areas. Or if you can volunteer to teach English please contact Nastia on nikasling@gmail.com.

Marlborough Fire Station is looking for new on-call recruits, ideally those who live or work within 5 minutes of the station. On-call firefighters are paid but they are not based at the station like full-time firefighters. They can have other jobs and commitments, only responding to emergencies when their alert goes off. Anyone over 18 with a good standard of physical fitness can apply. Please see Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue to find out more and fill out and application.

• For the latest information changes to rail services between Bedwyn, Newbury and Paddington we recommend following the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group.

Local events and activities

For more information on events and activities across the Penny Post area, see the website calendar.

• Dates for the diary

• see news and Christmas sections above

• Regular events

Sustainable Marlborough’s monthly social meet-up on the third Thursday of the month will re-start in January at Marlborough Quaker Meeting House.

Kennet Vale Table Tennis Club at Kennet Valley Hall. Juniors meet on Fridays from 5.45 to 7 pm and they are always on the lookout for adults to play socially or competitively. Call Richard on 07568 648468 to book a space.

Carer Café  at the Jubilee Centre, 28 Marlborough High Street on the fourth Tuesday of the month, from 10:30am to noon. No Booking required. Join in on a relaxed chat over a hot drink with other carers and support workers or volunteers from Carer Support Wiltshire.

Rhyme Time for babies and toddlers, every Wednesday and Friday 11am 11.30am at Marlborough Library. If you don’t already have a library membership, please sign yourself and your child up before you attend.

Great Bedwyn Stay And Play is on Mondays term time 1pm to 2.30pm at Great Bedwyn Village Hall. There are games and free play with lots of themed music to enjoy with your little one. All are welcome. Prices for sessions can be found on their Facebook page.

• The Transition Marlborough Hub Group meet on the second Thursday of the month at 7.30pm currently by zoom. To get involved please email enquiries@transitionmarlborough.org.

• Marlborough Park Run is a free, weekly, timed five km walk, jog or run at 9am every Saturday. Open to all ages and abilities. Organised entirely by volunteers. Click here to see their Facebook page.

The Stroke Association monthly drop-in support sessions at The Jubilee Centre for stroke survivors, their families and carers on Monday mornings. See here for the next date. For more details contact Katie Fielding on 07908 952740 or katie.fielding@stroke.org.uk

• Marlborough Floral Club meets 2pm on the first Thursday of the month at the Mildenhall Village Hall. For details please see here or call Micky Graham on 01672 514301.

The Menopause Matters Marlborough facebook group provides a forum for women in Marlborough and the surrounding areas to access information and support relating to menopause.

The White Horse Bookshop is offering workshops until the end of the year, click here for the full list.

News from your local councils

Note: “the most recent meeting” refers to the most recent one for which minutes (in some cases draft) or some other summary is available. Other meetings may have taken place since. Some councils publish minutes more promptly than do others.

Many councils do not hold meetings in August and many postponed their September meeting following the Queen’s death. 

• The most recent full meeting of Marlborough Town Council for which minutes are available took place on 7 November and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: anti-social behaviour; Police report; a proposed meeting with Homes4Wiltshire and Aster Group “to discuss the issues created by the ongoing sale of social housing stock in the town which was continually reducing supply for local families”; the Savernake explosion memorial; town signage; the cost of living crisis; reports from outside bodies; and the Great West Way.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Town Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for the latest on Marlborough’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Great Bedwyn Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 10 November and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: footpaths; the co-option of two new councillors; the Village Hall;  the flood plan; actions from the last meeting; the Great Green Bedwyn Project; financial matters; repairs and maintenance issues; speeding; and planning matters.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 7 November and you can read the minutes here.

• The most recent meeting of Aldbourne Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 2 November and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: a review of outstanding issues; the Clerk’s report; the neighbourhood development plan; a warm space in the village; a request for a 20mph assessment on Castle Street; speeding; financial matters; verge wilding; dog mess; repairs and maintenance works; and the Pond.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for more information on Aldbourne’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Ramsbury & Axford Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 17 October and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: parish correspondence; warm spaces; planning matters; financial matters; rights of way; play areas and seats; the emergency committee; the green committee; “all well in Axford” (as it always seems to be – what a great place if must be to live); village maintenance; there allotments; the Parish Stewards; the School; and the Memorial Hall.
To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas and minutes, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Chiseldon Parish Council for which minutes are available, took place on 10 October and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: reports from the ward members; financial matters; reports from the committees; village repairs and maintenance; and footpaths.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Wanborough Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 10 October and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: dogs on Hooper’s Field; repair and maintenance works around the parish; the Hooper’s Field project; CCTV; updates from local groups; and the tennis courts.
To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas and minutes, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St George Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 6 October and you can read the minutes here.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Bishopstone and Hinton Parva Parish Council, for which minutes are available took place on 7 November and you can download the minutes here. Items covered included: planning matters; a report from ward member Gary Sumner; financial matters; defibrillators; trees; and parking at Church Row.
To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• Click here for a list of current consultations being run by Wiltshire Council.

• Marlborough area council contacts

Parishes: Marlborough Town CouncilAldbourne Parish CouncilRamsbury & Axford Parish Council, Great Bedwyn Parish Council, Savernake Parish Council, Chiseldon Parish Council, Ogbourne St George Parish Council, Wanborough Parish CouncilBishopstone and Hinton Parva Parish Council  and Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council.

Wiltshire Council: click here to visit the website.

News from other areas

Penny Post area – please see the following separate sections: Hungerford area; Lambourn ValleyNewbury area; Thatcham area; Compton & DownlandsTheale area; Wantage area.

News and views from across the area and beyond: please see the most recent Weekly News with Brian column.

Thursday 1 December 2022

This week we have horses, survey results, discounted leisure, holiday camps and donations  – plus our usual round-up of other local news, local events and activities and news from your local councils.

This week’s news

Greatwood Charity is looking for help in supporting the winter costs of the horses that they care for, which reaches over £500 a week. £17.50 would pay for a bag of Dodson & Horrell feed, they use 5 bags a day. £45 would pay for a bale of haylage, they use 5 bales a week £45 would pay for a bale of straw, they use six bales a week. Any amount you can give will support our horses through the winter, and help us prepare for the challenges we might face in 2023.

• In a recent survey Marlborough Town Council asked residents to describe Marlborough to a friend and the results are in. 480 people took the survey during September and October, and the most frequently used words were: friendly, beautiful, historic and market. Click here for the full results of the survey, the background to it, and how residents’ responses are shaping plans.

Marlborough Toy Bank is offering free toys for Christmas on Sunday 4 December at Marlborough Bowls Club SN8 4AD from 12 – 6pm. People will be able to choose gifts for their children/grandchildren for free, have them wrapped and take them home, ready for Christmas morning. Well done to local resident Kate Nicholls for organising it.

Marlborough Town Council is inviting tenders to provide and install a new and refreshed play area at Wye House Gardens in Marlborough. For further details please see here.

• On Saturday 3 December from 11am to 3pm Ramsbury Royal British Legionis holding a Festive Frenzy at Ramsbury Memorial Hall with lots for all the family, including Santa’s Grotto, Santa’s Donkeys, festive tractors, gifts and handmade crafts, dog fancy dress competition, Christmas Cafe, mulled wine and mince pies.

• St Peter’s Church in Marlborough is now open to the public as a warm space 10am to 4pm Monday to Saturday. Do please join them for a hot drink with biscuits and cake – a warm welcome awaits you.

Marlborough Town Council is offering free holiday camps for kids Reception to Year 11 in December. Please follow this link for details

• Come and share your skills with others, on the first Monday of the month act The Barge Inn on Honey Street from 7.30 pm. Bring your knowledge from computer skills to gardening and embroidery and share with others.

Dogs Trust Marlborough is looking for donations of handbags, men’s shoes, women’s shoes and boots and childrens games for Xmas. Opening times 9 am till 4 pm. Closed Tuesdays and Sundays.

• Quick reminder about Marlborough Town Council’s small grant scheme for local community or charity projects. Applications are considered by the Council at their Finance & Policy Committee Meetings which happen every few months. For more information about how to apply for the grant, visit the Town Council’s website.

Click here for the latest news from the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group about the continuing threat to direct rail services from Bedwyn, Hungerford and Kintbury to London. The struggle is far from over.

Christmas

• Marlborough’s Cards For Good Causes Shop is back in St Peter’s Church selling charity Christmas cards as well as Advent Calendars, Gift Bags and Christmas Wrap. Open Monday to Saturday 10am – 4pm.

• Marlborough Musical Theatre Choir Christmas Concert and Singalong on Wednesday 7 December from 7.30 to 9.30pm at St Mary’s Church. £5 donation to charity includes free prosecco and mince pies.

• Phoenix Brass together with Marlborough Accordion Orchestra and Marlborough Community Choir presents, ‘Music & Voices for Christmas’ at Marlborough Town Hall on Sunday 11 December at 2.30. Free entry by tickets obtainable from people who are members of music groups or by phoning 01672 841315

• Mistletoe in Marlborough, is showcasing suppliers for everything Christmassy on 4 December from 10am to 4pm at Marlborough Town Hall. Free to enter.

Marlborough Town Council is pleased to announce Marlborough Christmas lunch will take place at the Town Hall from 12 noon on Christmas Day. There will be plenty of food, drink, fun and games and lots of Christmas cheer. They have been fortunate enough to receive donations from generous sponsors and therefore the usual charge will be waived this year. If you have any questions or would like any further information please call Vicky on 07717 107623. If you would like to attend, please return a completed form to the Jubilee Centre by the 12 December. Forms are available from the Jubilee Centre.

Slade Tribute Band Slyde will be appearing at The Memorial Hall, Marlborough College on 17 December at 7.30 pm. Tickets £15 in advance from mantonfest.co.uk and £20 on the door. Outside bar.

Community notices

Marlborough Community Fridge, located in the Community Room in the George/Figgins Lane Car Park (just behind the public loos) is free to access, there are no criteria that have to be met and it is a good way to use up surplus food from supermarkets and businesses that would otherwise go to waste. Please see their facebook page for more details.

Love Marlborough Kids is a great community initiative to make sure all Marlborough children have access to free meals during the current crisis and beyond. No fuss, no forms, no referrals. Just meals for families who need them. See here for how to apply.

• Anyone in the Marlborough area wanting to host or support Ukrainian refugees are invited to join this Facebook page: Ukrainians and their sponsors in Marlborough and surrounding areas. Or if you can volunteer to teach English please contact Nastia on nikasling@gmail.com.

Marlborough Fire Station is looking for new on-call recruits, ideally those who live or work within 5 minutes of the station. On-call firefighters are paid but they are not based at the station like full-time firefighters. They can have other jobs and commitments, only responding to emergencies when their alert goes off. Anyone over 18 with a good standard of physical fitness can apply. Please see Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue to find out more and fill out and application.

• For the latest information changes to rail services between Bedwyn, Newbury and Paddington we recommend following the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group.

Local events and activities

For more information on events and activities across the Penny Post area, see the website calendar.

• Dates for the diary

• see news and Christmas sections above

• Regular events

Sustainable Marlborough’s monthly social meet-up on the third Thursday of the month will re-start in January at Marlborough Quaker Meeting House.

Kennet Vale Table Tennis Club at Kennet Valley Hall. Juniors meet on Fridays from 5.45 to 7 pm and they are always on the lookout for adults to play socially or competitively. Call Richard on 07568 648468 to book a space.

Carer Café  at the Jubilee Centre, 28 Marlborough High Street on the fourth Tuesday of the month, from 10:30am to noon. No Booking required. Join in on a relaxed chat over a hot drink with other carers and support workers or volunteers from Carer Support Wiltshire.

Rhyme Time for babies and toddlers, every Wednesday and Friday 11am 11.30am at Marlborough Library. If you don’t already have a library membership, please sign yourself and your child up before you attend.

Great Bedwyn Stay And Play is on Mondays term time 1pm to 2.30pm at Great Bedwyn Village Hall. There are games and free play with lots of themed music to enjoy with your little one. All are welcome. Prices for sessions can be found on their Facebook page.

• The Transition Marlborough Hub Group meet on the second Thursday of the month at 7.30pm currently by zoom. To get involved please email enquiries@transitionmarlborough.org.

• Marlborough Park Run is a free, weekly, timed five km walk, jog or run at 9am every Saturday. Open to all ages and abilities. Organised entirely by volunteers. Click here to see their Facebook page.

The Stroke Association monthly drop-in support sessions at The Jubilee Centre for stroke survivors, their families and carers on Monday mornings. See here for the next date. For more details contact Katie Fielding on 07908 952740 or katie.fielding@stroke.org.uk

• Marlborough Floral Club meets 2pm on the first Thursday of the month at the Mildenhall Village Hall. For details please see here or call Micky Graham on 01672 514301.

The Menopause Matters Marlborough facebook group provides a forum for women in Marlborough and the surrounding areas to access information and support relating to menopause.

The White Horse Bookshop is offering workshops until the end of the year, click here for the full list.

News from your local councils

Note: “the most recent meeting” refers to the most recent one for which minutes (in some cases draft) or some other summary is available. Other meetings may have taken place since. Some councils publish minutes more promptly than do others.

Many councils do not hold meetings in August and many postponed their September meeting following the Queen’s death. 

• The most recent full meeting of Marlborough Town Council for which minutes are available took place on 7 November and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: anti-social behaviour; Police report; a proposed meeting with Homes4Wiltshire and Aster Group “to discuss the issues created by the ongoing sale of social housing stock in the town which was continually reducing supply for local families”; the Savernake explosion memorial; town signage; the cost of living crisis; reports from outside bodies; and the Great West Way.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Town Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for the latest on Marlborough’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Great Bedwyn Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 10 November and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: footpaths; the co-option of two new councillors; the Village Hall;  the flood plan; actions from the last meeting; the Great Green Bedwyn Project; financial matters; repairs and maintenance issues; speeding; and planning matters.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 7 November and you can read the minutes here.

• The most recent meeting of Aldbourne Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 2 November and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: a review of outstanding issues; the Clerk’s report; the neighbourhood development plan; a warm space in the village; a request for a 20mph assessment on Castle Street; speeding; financial matters; verge wilding; dog mess; repairs and maintenance works; and the Pond.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for more information on Aldbourne’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Ramsbury & Axford Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 17 October and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: parish correspondence; warm spaces; planning matters; financial matters; rights of way; play areas and seats; the emergency committee; the green committee; “all well in Axford” (as it always seems to be – what a great place if must be to live); village maintenance; there allotments; the Parish Stewards; the School; and the Memorial Hall.
To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas and minutes, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Chiseldon Parish Council for which minutes are available, took place on 10 October and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: reports from the ward members; financial matters; reports from the committees; village repairs and maintenance; and footpaths.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Wanborough Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 10 October and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: dogs on Hooper’s Field; repair and maintenance works around the parish; the Hooper’s Field project; CCTV; updates from local groups; and the tennis courts.
To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas and minutes, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St George Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 6 October and you can read the minutes here.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Bishopstone and Hinton Parva Parish Council, for which minutes are available took place on 7 November and you can download the minutes here. Items covered included: planning matters; a report from ward member Gary Sumner; financial matters; defibrillators; trees; and parking at Church Row.
To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• Click here for a list of current consultations being run by Wiltshire Council.

• Marlborough area council contacts

Parishes: Marlborough Town CouncilAldbourne Parish CouncilRamsbury & Axford Parish Council, Great Bedwyn Parish Council, Savernake Parish Council, Chiseldon Parish Council, Ogbourne St George Parish Council, Wanborough Parish CouncilBishopstone and Hinton Parva Parish Council  and Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council.

Wiltshire Council: click here to visit the website.

News from other areas

Penny Post area – please see the following separate sections: Hungerford area; Lambourn ValleyNewbury area; Thatcham area; Compton & DownlandsTheale area; Wantage area.

News and views from across the area and beyond: please see the most recent Weekly News with Brian column.

Thursday 24 November 2022

This week we have tenders, holiday camps, small grants, a lunch and a toy bank – plus our usual round-up of other local news, local events and activities and news from your local councils.

This week’s news

Quick reminder from Citizen’s Advice on how to shop savvy and stay safe online this Black Friday (25 November) and Cyber Monday (28 November). Remember, if an offer is too good to be true, it’s probably not true…

• St Peter’s Church in Marlborough is now open to the public as a warm space 10am to 4pm Monday to Saturday. Do please join them for a hot drink with biscuits and cake – a warm welcome awaits you.

Marlborough Town Council is offering free holiday camps for kids Reception to Year 11 in December. Please follow this link for details

• Come and share your skills with others, on the first Monday of the month act The Barge Inn on Honey Street from 7.30 pm. Bring your knowledge from computer skills to gardening and embroidery and share with others.

Dogs Trust Marlborough is looking for donations of handbags, men’s shoes, women’s shoes and boots and childrens games for Xmas. Opening times 9 am till 4 pm. Closed Tuesdays and Sundays.

• Quick reminder about Marlborough Town Council’s small grant scheme for local community or charity projects. Applications are considered by the Council at their Finance & Policy Committee Meetings which happen every few months. For more information about how to apply for the grant, visit the Town Council’s website.

Click here for the latest news from the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group about the continuing threat to direct rail services from Bedwyn, Hungerford and Kintbury to London. The struggle is far from over.

Christmas

• Marlborough’s Cards For Good Causes Shop is back in St Peter’s Church selling charity Christmas cards as well as Advent Calendars, Gift Bags and Christmas Wrap. Open Monday to Saturday 10am – 4pm.

• Marlborough Musical Theatre Choir Christmas Concert and Singalong on Wednesday 7 December from 7.30 to 9.30pm at St Mary’s Church. £5 donation to charity includes free prosecco and mince pies.

• Phoenix Brass together with Marlborough Accordion Orchestra and Marlborough Community Choir presents, ‘Music & Voices for Christmas’ at Marlborough Town Hall on Sunday 11 December at 2.30. Free entry by tickets obtainable from people who are members of music groups or by phoning 01672 841315

• Mistletoe in Marlborough, is showcasing suppliers for everything Christmassy on 4 December from 10am to 4pm at Marlborough Town Hall. Free to enter.

Marlborough Town Council is pleased to announce Marlborough Christmas lunch will take place at the Town Hall from 12 noon on Christmas Day. There will be plenty of food, drink, fun and games and lots of Christmas cheer. They have been fortunate enough to receive donations from generous sponsors and therefore the usual charge will be waived this year. If you have any questions or would like any further information please call Vicky on 07717 107623. If you would like to attend, please return a completed form to the Jubilee Centre by the 12 December. Forms are available from the Jubilee Centre.

• Come and meet Santa on Saturday 26 November from 10am to 3pm at Ramsbury Brewery in Stock Lane Aldbourne. The Black Friday Weekend and Christmas Artisan Market is free to enter, will have a range of stalls, music, food & drink and will be raising money for fundraising in aid of Brighter Futures GWH but other charity stalls are welcome too.

• Local resident Kate Nicholls is running a Marlborough Toy Bank for Christmas on the first weekend of December. People will be able to choose gifts for their children/grandchildren, have them wrapped and take them home, ready for Christmas morning. If any of you have good quality used toys you would like to donate please contact Kate and she will let you know where to drop them off or collect. There will also be a collection basket in Tescos for pressies throughout November.

Slade Tribute Band Slyde will be appearing at The Memorial Hall, Marlborough College on 17 December at 7.30 pm. Tickets £15 in advance from mantonfest.co.uk and £20 on the door. Outside bar.

 

Community notices

Marlborough Community Fridge, located in the Community Room in the George/Figgins Lane Car Park (just behind the public loos) is free to access, there are no criteria that have to be met and it is a good way to use up surplus food from supermarkets and businesses that would otherwise go to waste. Please see their facebook page for more details.

Love Marlborough Kids is a great community initiative to make sure all Marlborough children have access to free meals during the current crisis and beyond. No fuss, no forms, no referrals. Just meals for families who need them. See here for how to apply.

• Anyone in the Marlborough area wanting to host or support Ukrainian refugees are invited to join this Facebook page: Ukrainians and their sponsors in Marlborough and surrounding areas. Or if you can volunteer to teach English please contact Nastia on nikasling@gmail.com.

Marlborough Fire Station is looking for new on-call recruits, ideally those who live or work within 5 minutes of the station. On-call firefighters are paid but they are not based at the station like full-time firefighters. They can have other jobs and commitments, only responding to emergencies when their alert goes off. Anyone over 18 with a good standard of physical fitness can apply. Please see Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue to find out more and fill out and application.

• For the latest information changes to rail services between Bedwyn, Newbury and Paddington we recommend following the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group.

Local events and activities

For more information on events and activities across the Penny Post area, see the website calendar.

• Dates for the diary

• see news and Christmas sections above

• Regular events

Sustainable Marlborough’s monthly social meet-up on the third Thursday of the month will re-start in January at Marlborough Quaker Meeting House.

Kennet Vale Table Tennis Club at Kennet Valley Hall. Juniors meet on Fridays from 5.45 to 7 pm and they are always on the lookout for adults to play socially or competitively. Call Richard on 07568 648468 to book a space.

Carer Café  at the Jubilee Centre, 28 Marlborough High Street on the fourth Tuesday of the month, from 10:30am to noon. No Booking required. Join in on a relaxed chat over a hot drink with other carers and support workers or volunteers from Carer Support Wiltshire.

Rhyme Time for babies and toddlers, every Wednesday and Friday 11am 11.30am at Marlborough Library. If you don’t already have a library membership, please sign yourself and your child up before you attend.

Great Bedwyn Stay And Play is on Mondays term time 1pm to 2.30pm at Great Bedwyn Village Hall. There are games and free play with lots of themed music to enjoy with your little one. All are welcome. Prices for sessions can be found on their Facebook page.

• The Transition Marlborough Hub Group meet on the second Thursday of the month at 7.30pm currently by zoom. To get involved please email enquiries@transitionmarlborough.org.

• Marlborough Park Run is a free, weekly, timed five km walk, jog or run at 9am every Saturday. Open to all ages and abilities. Organised entirely by volunteers. Click here to see their Facebook page.

The Stroke Association monthly drop-in support sessions at The Jubilee Centre for stroke survivors, their families and carers on Monday mornings. See here for the next date. For more details contact Katie Fielding on 07908 952740 or katie.fielding@stroke.org.uk

• Marlborough Floral Club meets 2pm on the first Thursday of the month at the Mildenhall Village Hall. For details please see here or call Micky Graham on 01672 514301.

The Menopause Matters Marlborough facebook group provides a forum for women in Marlborough and the surrounding areas to access information and support relating to menopause.

The White Horse Bookshop is offering workshops until the end of the year, click here for the full list.

News from your local councils

Note: “the most recent meeting” refers to the most recent one for which minutes (in some cases draft) or some other summary is available. Other meetings may have taken place since. Some councils publish minutes more promptly than do others.

Many councils do not hold meetings in August and many postponed their September meeting following the Queen’s death. 

• The most recent full meeting of Marlborough Town Council for which minutes are available took place on 7 November and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: anti-social behaviour; Police report; a proposed meeting with Homes4Wiltshire and Aster Group “to discuss the issues created by the ongoing sale of social housing stock in the town which was continually reducing supply for local families”; the Savernake explosion memorial; town signage; the cost of living crisis; reports from outside bodies; and the Great West Way.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Town Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for the latest on Marlborough’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Great Bedwyn Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 10 November and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: footpaths; the co-option of two new councillors; the Village Hall;  the flood plan; actions from the last meeting; the Great Green Bedwyn Project; financial matters; repairs and maintenance issues; speeding; and planning matters.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 7 November and you can read the minutes here.

• The most recent meeting of Aldbourne Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 2 November and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: a review of outstanding issues; the Clerk’s report; the neighbourhood development plan; a warm space in the village; a request for a 20mph assessment on Castle Street; speeding; financial matters; verge wilding; dog mess; repairs and maintenance works; and the Pond.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for more information on Aldbourne’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Ramsbury & Axford Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 17 October and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: parish correspondence; warm spaces; planning matters; financial matters; rights of way; play areas and seats; the emergency committee; the green committee; “all well in Axford” (as it always seems to be – what a great place if must be to live); village maintenance; there allotments; the Parish Stewards; the School; and the Memorial Hall.
To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas and minutes, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Chiseldon Parish Council for which minutes are available, took place on 10 October and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: reports from the ward members; financial matters; reports from the committees; village repairs and maintenance; and footpaths.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Wanborough Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 10 October and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: dogs on Hooper’s Field; repair and maintenance works around the parish; the Hooper’s Field project; CCTV; updates from local groups; and the tennis courts.
To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas and minutes, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St George Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 6 October and you can read the minutes here.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Bishopstone and Hinton Parva Parish Council, for which minutes are available took place on 7 November and you can download the minutes here. Items covered included: planning matters; a report from ward member Gary Sumner; financial matters; defibrillators; trees; and parking at Church Row.
To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• Click here for a list of current consultations being run by Wiltshire Council.

• Marlborough area council contacts

Parishes: Marlborough Town CouncilAldbourne Parish CouncilRamsbury & Axford Parish Council, Great Bedwyn Parish Council, Savernake Parish Council, Chiseldon Parish Council, Ogbourne St George Parish Council, Wanborough Parish CouncilBishopstone and Hinton Parva Parish Council  and Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council.

Wiltshire Council: click here to visit the website.

News from other areas

Penny Post area – please see the following separate sections: Hungerford area; Lambourn ValleyNewbury area; Thatcham area; Compton & DownlandsTheale area; Wantage area.

News and views from across the area and beyond: please see the most recent Weekly News with Brian column.

 

 

Thursday 17 November 2022

This week we have a park run, a Christmas lunch, skill-sharing, small grants and humanitarian aid, as well as some of the cost-of-living support and help measures recently announced by Marlborough Town Council – plus our usual round-up of other local news, local events and activities and news from your local councils.

This week’s news

On Friday 11 November Marlborough fell silent at 11am to commemorate Armistice Day.  The Mayor, the Lord Lieutanant of Wiltshire Mrs Sarah Troughton, 4MI Battalion, the Royal British Legion and students from St Johns laid wreaths at the 7th Wiltshire Regiment Memorial in London Road.  Shortly afterwards poppy posies were placed on Commonwealth War Graves in the two cemeteries at Marlborough Common. On Remembrance Sunday 13 November, Marlborough remembered the fallen with a very well attended parade which formed up in the High Street and marched to the War Memorial to take part in the 11:00 commemorations. Click here to see the photo gallery.

Were you one of the many residents who attended Danny Kruger MP’s climate talk on Thursday 10 November? If you were, we would be interested to hear your thoughts. If you weren’t, see this report by Hayley Lambert (who runs Packaging Not Included zero waste shop in Hughenden Yard) which balances what was written in Kruger’s own newsletter.

• The Best of Wiltshire Show is happening at Marlborough Town Hall on Sunday 20 November from 10am – 4pm. Entry to this event is free, and will be showcasing local Arts and Crafts for all your Christmas needs.

St Peter’s Church in Marlborough is now open to the public as a warm space 10am to 4pm Monday to Saturday. Do please join them for a hot drink with biscuits and cake – a warm welcome awaits you.

Join Marlborough Common 5k Your Way, Move Against Cancer on Saturday 26 November  at Marlborough Common Parkrun. Meet 8.50am at the blue flag. This is for anyone who has had a cancer diagnosis and their family to run or walk the 5k your own way (or any distance). Exercise helps in recovery. If nervous about attending please email  marlboroughgroup@5kyourway.org

Young Thomas is raising money for BBC Children in Need. Over the 3 weeks Thomas will be riding his tricycle around his estate and various locations in Marlborough hoping to reach his target of 60 miles.  That’s 20 miles he’ll need to cover each week. His last few miles he will be riding through Honeystreet and ending at The Barge Inn Honeystreet where a well known  BBC children in need icon will be there waiting to greet him.  If anyone would like to head to The Barge for midday on 27 November to greet Thomas – I’m sure he will be thrilled with a welcoming committee. To donate please click here.  

There is a lot of hype these days around Black Friday (25 November) and Cyber Monday (28 November). When it comes to shopping online, it’s tempting to grab a ‘good deal’ but it is also a great opportunity for scammers to take advantage of customers looking for a bargain. Please see these reminders from Citizen’s Advice on how to shop savvy and stay safe online. Remember, if an offer is too good to be true, it’s probably not true…

Marlborough Town Council is pleased to announce Marlborough Christmas Lunch will take place at the Town Hall from 12 noon on Christmas Day. There will be plenty of food, drink, fun and games and lots of Christmas cheer. They have been fortunate enough to receive donations from generous sponsors and therefore the usual charge will be waived this year. If you have any questions or would like any further information please call Vicky on 07717 107623. If you would like to attend, please return a completed form to the Jubilee Centre by the 12 December. Forms are available from the Jubilee Centre.

Marlborough Town Council is offering free holiday camps for kids Reception to Year 11 in December. Please follow this link for details https://www.marlborough-tc.gov.uk/…/2720-free-holiday…

• As part of the BBC Children in Need Walk and Talk  WALX Wessex is running a charity walk on Friday 18 November from 10.30am to 12.30pm in West Woods . West Woods famous for its bluebells in the spring is also fabulous for walking in the autumn. This will be a five-mile walk starting at the car park near Clatford and walking through the woods and out towards the views from Oare Hill over Pewsey Vale, with a chance to see parts of the ancient defensive line of the Wansdyke as well as a few other surprises. No charge for this walk but please bring a donation to the charity or donate online

• Come and share your skills with others, on the first Monday of the month act The Barge Inn on Honey Street from 7.30 pm. Bring your knowledge from computer skills to gardening and embroidery and share with others.

Dogs Trust Marlborough is looking for donations of handbags, men’s shoes, women’s shoes and boots and childrens games for Xmas. Opening times 9 am till 4 pm. Closed Tuesdays and Sundays.

• UKtoUkraine has been supplying humanitarian aid to Ukraine since the war started. They have been kindly donated the use of a huge 44 tonne lorry to fill with essential supplies and aim to depart on 24 November. They are looking for donations of food, survival supplies and Christmas gifts for children – see the detailed list here.Drop off point is Axford Village Hall, Nr Marlborough SN8 2EZ. Open times: 10am to 2pm on Mon 7, Tue 8, Mon 21 and Tue 22 November.

• Lambourn Valley actress Catherine Chalk enjoys her debut role in mainstream cinema in the the film Hilma which will be showing at the Parade Marlborough on Thursday 17th November, before it goes on general release. The Guardian described  her performance as Anna Cassel as “terrific.”

• There is a waiting list for the Public Open Evening at The Blackett Observatory at Marlborough College this Saturday 19 November. There will be two sessions, one running from 6pm to 7.30pm and the second running from 8pm to 9.30pm. Register at Astronomy at the Marlborough College Blackett Observatory to go on the waiting list.

• Quick reminder about Marlborough Town Council’s small grant scheme for local community or charity projects. Applications are considered by the Council at their Finance & Policy Committee Meetings which happen every few months. For more information about how to apply for the grant, visit the Town Council’s website.

Click here for the latest news from the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group about the continuing threat to direct rail services from Bedwyn, Hungerford and Kintbury to London. The struggle is far from over.

Christmas

• Marlborough’s Cards For Good Causes Shop is back in St Peter’s Church selling charity Christmas cards as well as Advent Calendars, Gift Bags and Christmas Wrap. Open Monday to Saturday 10am – 4pm.

Marlborough Christmas Lights Switch On is on Friday 18 November in Marlborough. The Christmas market will open in the High Street at 10am with street entertainment from around 5pm and lights on at 6.30pm. Bookings for market stalls are pretty much complete now, but don’t worry if you missed out – Preshute School is holding a Christmas Fair in the playground on 26 November – email preshuteppsa@gmail.com if you’re interested in having a stall there

• Come and meet Santa on Saturday 26 November from 10am to 3pm at Ramsbury Brewery in Stock Lane Aldbourne. The Black Friday Weekend and Christmas Artisan Market is free to enter, will have a range of stalls, music, food & drink and will be raising money for fundraising in aid of Brighter Futures GWH but other charity stalls are welcome too.

• Local resident Kate Nicholls is running a Marlborough Toy Bank for Christmas on the first weekend of December. People will be able to choose gifts for their children/grandchildren, have them wrapped and take them home, ready for Christmas morning. If any of you have good quality used toys you would like to donate please contact Kate and she will let you know where to drop them off or collect. There will also be a collection basket in Tescos for pressies throughout November.

Slade Tribute Band Slyde will be appearing at The Memorial Hall, Marlborough College on 17 December at 7.30 pm. Tickets £15 in advance from mantonfest.co.uk and £20 on the door. Outside bar.

Marlborough’s cost-of-living response

The following statement was made at the meeting of Marlborough Town Council on 7 November 2022 which we reproduce here verbatim:

Councillor Cleasby reported on a positive meeting held 2 November, where the town was very well represented by many groups. Preparations for warm spaces were under way at St Peter’s, which would be open every day, and Marlborough Library and more offers were coming forward. While it wasn’t clear yet exactly what would be needed, groups were standing by and making plans in readiness. Minutes of the meeting were available upon request. Specific points included:

  • A potential grant from the Area Board to provide facilitation.
  • A toy collection had met a good response.
  • The Mayor would be at Tesco on 20 and 27 November and 16 December to collect items for a food bank for the elderly and vulnerable and could provide a list of what items were required. Marlborough College was donating food and students were helping with posters. Any further ideas of ways to help the elderly at Christmas would be welcome – it was suggested that the Jubilee Centre might be able to provide advice.
  • The Mayor would set up a collection point at the Marlborough Community and Youth Centre for families to collect toys and food.
  • There had been an increase in people using both the Community Fridge and Marlborough Kids Meals.
  • An upcoming event at Rick Stein to support Marlborough Kids Meals.

Community notices

Marlborough Community Fridge, located in the Community Room in the George/Figgins Lane Car Park (just behind the public loos) is free to access, there are no criteria that have to be met and it is a good way to use up surplus food from supermarkets and businesses that would otherwise go to waste. Please see their facebook page for more details.

Love Marlborough Kids is a great community initiative to make sure all Marlborough children have access to free meals during the current crisis and beyond. No fuss, no forms, no referrals. Just meals for families who need them. See here for how to apply.

• Anyone in the Marlborough area wanting to host or support Ukrainian refugees are invited to join this Facebook page: Ukrainians and their sponsors in Marlborough and surrounding areas. Or if you can volunteer to teach English please contact Nastia on nikasling@gmail.com.

Marlborough Fire Station is looking for new on-call recruits, ideally those who live or work within 5 minutes of the station. On-call firefighters are paid but they are not based at the station like full-time firefighters. They can have other jobs and commitments, only responding to emergencies when their alert goes off. Anyone over 18 with a good standard of physical fitness can apply. Please see Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue to find out more and fill out and application.

• For the latest information changes to rail services between Bedwyn, Newbury and Paddington we recommend following the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group.

Local events and activities

For more information on events and activities across the Penny Post area, see the website calendar.

• Dates for the diary

• see news and Christmas sections above

• Regular events

Kennet Vale Table Tennis Club at Kennet Valley Hall. Juniors meet on Fridays from 5.45 to 7 pm and they are always on the lookout for adults to play socially or competitively. Call Richard on 07568 648468 to book a space.

Carer Café  at the Jubilee Centre, 28 Marlborough High Street on the fourth Tuesday of the month, from 10:30am to noon. No Booking required. Join in on a relaxed chat over a hot drink with other carers and support workers or volunteers from Carer Support Wiltshire.

Rhyme Time for babies and toddlers, every Wednesday and Friday 11am 11.30am at Marlborough Library. If you don’t already have a library membership, please sign yourself and your child up before you attend.

Great Bedwyn Stay And Play is on Mondays term time 1pm to 2.30pm at Great Bedwyn Village Hall. There are games and free play with lots of themed music to enjoy with your little one. All are welcome. Prices for sessions can be found on their Facebook page.

• The Transition Marlborough Hub Group meet on the second Thursday of the month at 7.30pm currently by zoom. To get involved please email enquiries@transitionmarlborough.org.

• Marlborough Park Run is a free, weekly, timed five km walk, jog or run at 9am every Saturday. Open to all ages and abilities. Organised entirely by volunteers. Click here to see their Facebook page.

The Stroke Association monthly drop-in support sessions at The Jubilee Centre for stroke survivors, their families and carers on Monday mornings. See here for the next date. For more details contact Katie Fielding on 07908 952740 or katie.fielding@stroke.org.uk

• Marlborough Floral Club meets 2pm on the first Thursday of the month at the Mildenhall Village Hall. For details please see here or call Micky Graham on 01672 514301.

The Menopause Matters Marlborough facebook group provides a forum for women in Marlborough and the surrounding areas to access information and support relating to menopause.

The White Horse Bookshop is offering workshops until the end of the year, click here for the full list.

News from your local councils

Note: “the most recent meeting” refers to the most recent one for which minutes (in some cases draft) or some other summary is available. Other meetings may have taken place since. Some councils publish minutes more promptly than do others.

Many councils do not hold meetings in August and many postponed their September meeting following the Queen’s death. 

• The most recent full meeting of Marlborough Town Council for which minutes are available took place on 7 November and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: anti-social behaviour; Police report; a proposed meeting with Homes4Wiltshire and Aster Group “to discuss the issues created by the ongoing sale of social housing stock in the town which was continually reducing supply for local families”; the Savernake explosion memorial; town signage; the cost of living crisis; reports from outside bodies; and the Great West Way.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Town Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for the latest on Marlborough’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Great Bedwyn Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 10 November and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: footpaths; the co-option of two new councillors; the Village Hall;  the flood plan; actions from the last meeting; the Great Green Bedwyn Project; financial matters; repairs and maintenance issues; speeding; and planning matters.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 7 November and you can read the minutes here.

• The most recent meeting of Aldbourne Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 2 November and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: a review of outstanding issues; the Clerk’s report; the neighbourhood development plan; a warm space in the village; a request for a 20mph assessment on Castle Street; speeding; financial matters; verge wilding; dog mess; repairs and maintenance works; and the Pond.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for more information on Aldbourne’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Ramsbury & Axford Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 17 October and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: parish correspondence; warm spaces; planning matters; financial matters; rights of way; play areas and seats; the emergency committee; the green committee; “all well in Axford” (as it always seems to be – what a great place if must be to live); village maintenance; there allotments; the Parish Stewards; the School; and the Memorial Hall.
To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas and minutes, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Chiseldon Parish Council for which minutes are available, took place on 10 October and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: reports from the ward members; financial matters; reports from the committees; village repairs and maintenance; and footpaths.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Wanborough Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 10 October and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: dogs on Hooper’s Field; repair and maintenance works around the parish; the Hooper’s Field project; CCTV; updates from local groups; and the tennis courts.
To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas and minutes, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St George Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 6 October and you can read the minutes here.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Bishopstone and Hinton Parva Parish Council, for which minutes are available took place on 7 November and you can download the minutes here. Items covered included: planning matters; a report from ward member Gary Sumner; financial matters; defibrillators; trees; and parking at Church Row.
To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• Click here for a list of current consultations being run by Wiltshire Council.

• Marlborough area council contacts

Parishes: Marlborough Town CouncilAldbourne Parish CouncilRamsbury & Axford Parish Council, Great Bedwyn Parish Council, Savernake Parish Council, Chiseldon Parish Council, Ogbourne St George Parish Council, Wanborough Parish CouncilBishopstone and Hinton Parva Parish Council  and Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council.

Wiltshire Council: click here to visit the website.

News from other areas

Penny Post area – please see the following separate sections: Hungerford area; Lambourn ValleyNewbury area; Thatcham area; Compton & DownlandsTheale area; Wantage area.

News and views from across the area and beyond: please see the most recent Weekly News with Brian column.

 

Thursday 10 November 2022

This week we have a soprano, a green fair, skill sharing, a debut film and unseen Marlborough. We also take a look at the arboreal work planned for the Savernake Forest over the next 14 months and wonder if this is all that seems; and consider the implications of Marlborough’s parliamentary divorce from Devizes – plus our usual round-up of other local news, local events and activities and news from your local councils.

This week’s news

• As part of the BBC Children in Need Walk and Talk  WALX Wessex is running a charity walk on Friday 18 November from 10.30am to 12.30pm in West Woods . West Woods famous for its bluebells in the spring is also fabulous for walking in the autumn.

This will be a five-mile walk starting at the car park near Clatford and walking through the woods and out towards the views from Oare Hill over Pewsey Vale, with a chance to see parts of the ancient defensive line of the Wansdyke as well as a few other surprises. No charge for this walk but please bring a donation to the charity or donate online

• Wiltshire Police Band with guest soprano Kristina Takashina are performing at a concert called ‘Remembrance’ on Saturday 12 November at 7.30 at The Bouverie Hall, Pewsey. Tickets cost £10, including refreshment, available from The Little Lunch Box, Pewsey with a raffle and donations supporting The Royal British Legion

• Come and share your skills with others, on the first Monday of the month act The Barge Inn on Honey Street from 7.30 pm. Bring your knowledge from computer skills to gardening and embroidery and share with others.

• Come and meet Santa on Saturday 26 November from 10am to 3pm at Ramsbury Brewery in Stock Lane Aldbourne. The Black Friday Weekend and Christmas Artisan Market is free to enter, will have a range of stalls, music, food & drink and will be raising money for fundraising in aid of Brighter Futures GWH but other charity stalls are welcome too.

Great Bedwyn Primary School is hosting a Green Fair on Saturday 12 November from 1pm to 4pm. An enjoyable and informative day for all ages, including Green fun for children, with free art and science activities.

Dogs Trust Marlborough is looking for donations of handbags, men’s shoes, women’s shoes and boots and childrens games for Xmas. Opening times 9 am till 4 pm. Closed Tuesdays and Sundays.

• UKtoUkraine has been supplying humanitarian aid to Ukraine since the war started. They have been kindly donated the use of a huge 44 tonne lorry to fill with essential supplies and aim to depart on 24 November. They are looking for donations of food, survival supplies and Christmas gifts for children – see the detailed list here.Drop off point is Axford Village Hall, Nr Marlborough SN8 2EZ. Open times: 10am to 2pm on Mon 7, Tue 8, Mon 21 and Tue 22 November.

• Lambourn Valley actress Catherine Chalk enjoys her debut role in mainstream cinema in the the film Hilma which will be showing at the Parade Marlborough on Thursday 17th November, before it goes on general release. The Guardian described  her performance as Anna Cassel as “terrific.”

• The Blackett Observatory at Marlborough College is holding a Public Open Evening on Saturday 19 November. There will be two sessions, one running from 6pm to 7.30pm and the second running from 8pm to 9.30pm. This will be a great opportunity to explore the night sky at the best observatory in Wiltshire. Children are welcome, but need to be at least 8 years old. It is free to attend, but you do need a ticket and spaces are limited.  Book here Astronomy at the Marlborough College Blackett Observatory .

Talking of cleaning up, help is requested with the autumn clean at Wilton Windmill on Sun 13 Nov to put the site into hibernation for the winter.

• Photographer Bob Holman is seeking help for his latest project called Marlborough Unseen from all local residents. Bob explains, “I want to capture what nobody would normally see in Marlborough. For example; there are cellars, underground storage areas, dungeons , sewers and other hidden areas of Marlborough that he is keen to illuminate. Full credit will be given to selected images posted on social media.

• Quick reminder about Marlborough Town Council’s small grant scheme for local community or charity projects. Applications are considered by the Council at their Finance & Policy Committee Meetings which happen every few months. For more information about how to apply for the grant, visit the Town Council’s website.

Click here for the latest news from the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group about the continuing threat to direct rail services from Bedwyn, Hungerford and Kintbury to London. The struggle is far from over.

Christmas

• Marlborough Town Council is glad to announce that Christmas starts with the Marlborough Christmas Lights Switch On on Friday 18 November in Marlborough. The Christmas market will open in the High Street at 10am with street entertainment from around 5pm and lights on at 6.30pm. Bookings for market stalls are pretty much complete now, but don’t worry if you missed out – Preshute School is holding a Christmas Fair in the playground on 26 November – email preshuteppsa@gmail.com if you’re interested in having a stall there

• Last year £1,180 was raised by Marlborough residents for Christmas Care a charity in Swindon, and this year they are launching a new appeal for the same charity that gets accommodation for the homeless over the Christmas period. They are looking for any old pictures/paintings you have laying around collecting dust – for a one day £10 per picture sale in central Marlborough Saturday 5 November 5th from 9am-5pm. Please see christmascareswindon.org for full details.

• Local resident Kate Nicholls is running a Marlborough Toy Bank for Christmas on the first weekend of December. People will be able to choose gifts for their children/grandchildren, have them wrapped and take them home, ready for Christmas morning. If any of you have good quality used toys you would like to donate please contact Kate and she will let you know where to drop them off or collect. There will also be a collection basket in Tescos for pressies throughout November.

Slade Tribute Band Slyde will be appearing at The Memorial Hall, Marlborough College on 17 December at 7.30 pm. Tickets £15 in advance from mantonfest.co.uk and £20 on the door. Outside bar.

Work in the forest

Many thanks to Froxfield Parish Council which has shared with me an email from the Forestry Commission which had the heading “Upcoming forestry works in Savernake Forest.”

“We will soon be working in Savernake Forest to complete a number of forestry operations which will last until late 2023.In several areas of the forest where trees are growing densely, we will be thinning them. This means removing selected trees to give the remaining ones more space to grow to their potential. Thinning also allows more light to reach the forest floor, which improves the habitat for ground flora and the wildlife it supports. Many of our planned work areas are classified as a Plantation on Ancient Woodland Site (PAWS) which means that we are gradually managing them back to the way they would have been several hundred years ago. Where we are thinning the trees, we will target the removal of non-native conifers to benefit the broadleaf trees and, where possible, open up more space around some of Savernake’s special veteran trees to support their health.

“We will also be removing around 300 ash trees which are close to access routes around the forest and showing signs of chalara ash dieback. This is a destructive disease that causes trees to become brittle, drop branches, or fall altogether. We will be removing these trees for safety. There is more information about this work on our website.

“Please let me know if I can help by providing any more information. We understand that residents may not be familiar with sustainable forest management and are keen to explain how this planned work supports the long-term health and resilience of the forest.Please don’t hesitate to contact me if you have any questions or refer queries from local residents to westengland@forestryengland.uk.”

All well and good, one might say: necessary work being done by the competent authority. However, there are two aspects of this which might be less straightforward.

The first concerns access. On 26 May 2022 (see Access to the Savernake), we reported that “uncertainty has recently been hanging over the woodland as the trustees had recently announced their intention to close some of the roads.”  Savernake Parish Council invited all the interested participants along to its May meeting and you can read more about this in this report in Marlborough News. The author states that while the questions and the answers didn’t offer a great deal “in terms of future direction or likely immediate action. But the structure of ownership and responsibility did become clear as this has largely dominated debate in recent months.”

The Marlborough News article went on to stress the that the local community were important stakeholders in the Forest and “must be heard, and not just by means of a ‘tick box’ consultation.” The possibility exists that the above-mentioned works with their 14-month timescale may provide an opportunity to introduce access restrictions (which were, and probably still are, very unpopular locally) by stealth. I’m sure Savernake PC and other local groups will be watching developments closely.

The second concerns ash trees. There is a school of thought that the blanket removal of ash might risk removing the few trees which are actually showing signs of resistance and could offer a gene pool for the continuation of the species. I shall ask the Forestry Commission about this; also what plans there are for replacing the thousands of ashes being removed with another species of tree.

Left to its own Devizes

As we’ve had cause to mention several times, most recently in this separate column last week, The Boundary Commissioners have been out and about performing their never-ending task of adjusting constituency boundaries to reflect the changing demographics (basically, people have the irritating habit of moving from one place to another or building new houses without asking the Boundary Commission’s permission).

The Commissioners are governed by a number of rules, one of which is that all constituencies need to be within 5% of the average population for each of the four countries of the UK. In addition, they are reluctant to divide communities or local-government wards and appear to favour trying to have boundaries following county or district lines where possible.  This can result in some quite odd-shaped constituencies.

As this article in Marlborough News points out, this seems set to result in what it terms a “parliamentary divorce” between Marlborough and Devizes, after which the current constituency is named. The new one will be known, slightly unimaginatively, as “East Wiltshire,” although that’s probably logical given that it has no overwhelmingly large settlement. “Amesbury, Avon Valley, Ludgershall, Marlborough, Pewsey and Tidworth”, for example, hardly rolls off the tongue. As the MN article points out, there’s currently a consultation open until 5 December. The results will be presented to parliament in July 2023.

Although MPs are perfectly entitled to write 9in with their comments, their views are given no more weight than yours or mine would be (after a tweak was publicly suggested by Newbury MP Laura Farris, I called the Boundary Commission to check this). There are, however, accusations that the 95/105 rule slightly tends to create constituencies that are likely to return Conservative members. We shall see: I suspect that other factors are more likely to have an effect on the result of the next election (which needs to happen by January 2025).

The change is also leading to sitting MPs whose constituencies are changing estimating the advantages of staying where they are or moving to the new seat. Both Danny Kruger and Laura Farris are faced with this choice of sticking or twisting. However, nothing, apart from speculation and calculation, can happen on this until the changes are confirmed next year.

Community notices

Marlborough Community Fridge, located in the Community Room in the George/Figgins Lane Car Park (just behind the public loos) is free to access, there are no criteria that have to be met and it is a good way to use up surplus food from supermarkets and businesses that would otherwise go to waste. Please see their facebook page for more details.

Love Marlborough Kids is a great community initiative to make sure all Marlborough children have access to free meals during the current crisis and beyond. No fuss, no forms, no referrals. Just meals for families who need them. See here for how to apply.

• Anyone in the Marlborough area wanting to host or support Ukrainian refugees are invited to join this Facebook page: Ukrainians and their sponsors in Marlborough and surrounding areas. Or if you can volunteer to teach English please contact Nastia on nikasling@gmail.com.

Marlborough Fire Station is looking for new on-call recruits, ideally those who live or work within 5 minutes of the station. On-call firefighters are paid but they are not based at the station like full-time firefighters. They can have other jobs and commitments, only responding to emergencies when their alert goes off. Anyone over 18 with a good standard of physical fitness can apply. Please see Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue to find out more and fill out and application.

• For the latest information changes to rail services between Bedwyn, Newbury and Paddington we recommend following the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group.

Local events and activities

For more information on events and activities across the Penny Post area, see the website calendar.

• Dates for the diary

• see news and Christmas sections above

• Regular events

Kennet Vale Table Tennis Club at Kennet Valley Hall. Juniors meet on Fridays from 5.45 to 7 pm and they are always on the lookout for adults to play socially or competitively. Call Richard on 07568 648468 to book a space.

Carer Café  at the Jubilee Centre, 28 Marlborough High Street on the fourth Tuesday of the month, from 10:30am to noon. No Booking required. Join in on a relaxed chat over a hot drink with other carers and support workers or volunteers from Carer Support Wiltshire.

Rhyme Time for babies and toddlers, every Wednesday and Friday 11am 11.30am at Marlborough Library. If you don’t already have a library membership, please sign yourself and your child up before you attend.

Great Bedwyn Stay And Play is on Mondays term time 1pm to 2.30pm at Great Bedwyn Village Hall. There are games and free play with lots of themed music to enjoy with your little one. All are welcome. Prices for sessions can be found on their Facebook page.

• The Transition Marlborough Hub Group meet on the second Thursday of the month at 7.30pm currently by zoom. To get involved please email enquiries@transitionmarlborough.org.

• Marlborough Park Run is a free, weekly, timed five km walk, jog or run at 9am every Saturday. Open to all ages and abilities. Organised entirely by volunteers. Click here to see their Facebook page.

The Stroke Association monthly drop-in support sessions at The Jubilee Centre for stroke survivors, their families and carers on Monday mornings. See here for the next date. For more details contact Katie Fielding on 07908 952740 or katie.fielding@stroke.org.uk

• Marlborough Floral Club meets 2pm on the first Thursday of the month at the Mildenhall Village Hall. For details please see here or call Micky Graham on 01672 514301.

The Menopause Matters Marlborough facebook group provides a forum for women in Marlborough and the surrounding areas to access information and support relating to menopause.

The White Horse Bookshop is offering workshops until the end of the year, click here for the full list.

News from your local councils

Note: “the most recent meeting” refers to the most recent one for which minutes (in some cases draft) or some other summary is available. Other meetings may have taken place since. Some councils publish minutes more promptly than do others.

Many councils do not hold meetings in August and many postponed their September meeting following the Queen’s death. 

• The most recent full meeting of Marlborough Town Council for which minutes are available took place on 3 October and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: The Herbert Leaf Charity; plaques at the Recreation Ground; speeding; ambulance waiting times; the Mop Fairs; the Great West Way; the Civic Working Party; the cost-of-living crisis (see separate section above); the 2023-24 precept; financial matters; the Allotment Association; and committee reports.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Town Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for the latest on Marlborough’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Ramsbury & Axford Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 17 October and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: parish correspondence; warm spaces; planning matters; financial matters; rights of way; play areas and seats; the emergency committee; the green committee; “all well in Axford” (as it always seems to be – what a great place if must be to live); village maintenance; there allotments; the Parish Stewards; the School; and the Memorial Hall.
To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas and minutes, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Great Bedwyn Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 13 October and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: actions from the last meeting; speeding; councillor responsibilities; the Great Green Bedwyn Project; repairs and maintenance; financial matters; and planning matters.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here

• The most recent meeting of Chiseldon Parish Council for which minutes are available, took place on 10 October and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: reports from the ward members; financial matters; reports from the committees; village repairs and maintenance; and footpaths.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Wanborough Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 10 October and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: dogs on Hooper’s Field; repair and maintenance works around the parish; the Hooper’s Field project; CCTV; updates from local groups; and the tennis courts.
To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas and minutes, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St George Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 6 October and you can read the minutes here.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Aldbourne Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 5 October and you can read the minutes here.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for more information on Aldbourne’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Bishopstone and Hinton Parva Parish Council, for which minutes are available took place on 3 October and you can download the minutes here.
To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 5 September and you can read the minutes here.

• Click here for a list of current consultations being run by Wiltshire Council.

• Marlborough area council contacts

Parishes: Marlborough Town CouncilAldbourne Parish CouncilRamsbury & Axford Parish Council, Great Bedwyn Parish Council, Savernake Parish Council, Chiseldon Parish Council, Ogbourne St George Parish Council, Wanborough Parish CouncilBishopstone and Hinton Parva Parish Council  and Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council.

Wiltshire Council: click here to visit the website.

News from other areas

Penny Post area – please see the following separate sections: Hungerford area; Lambourn ValleyNewbury area; Thatcham area; Compton & DownlandsTheale area; Wantage area.

News and views from across the area and beyond: please see the most recent Weekly News with Brian column.

Thursday 3 November 2022

This week we have fireworks, a film debut, a windmill, an observatory open evening and small grants : plus our usual round-up of other local news, local events and activities and news from your local councils.

This week’s news

• Marlborough Scouts are hosting a Family Fireworks Night on Friday 4 November, at The Scout Hut in George Lane. Starts at 6pm and entry is by donation on the door.

Marlborough Town Football Club will be lighting up the sky on Saturday 5 November with their firework night. Gates open at 6pm, bonfire starts at 7pm and fireworks at approximately 7.30. Non members cost £5 per adult and £3 per child. Tickets can be purchased at marlboroughtownfc.co.uk/schedule

• Join the Marlborough Quakers on Thursday 10 November at St Peter’s Church at 7pm in an open climate meeting to hear from Danny Kruger MP on what the Government’s strategies are to deal with climate change and to explore issues and raise concerns. This will be a great opportunity to ask what you can do to help the Government achieve its objectives. Light refreshments will be available.

• Classic FM partnered with the RSPCA are doing a special radio programme on Bonfire Night to help animals cope with firework noise. They will be playing classical music help calm and settle anxious pets on Friday 4 November and Saturday 5 November from 5-9pm.

• UKtoUkraine has been supplying humanitarian aid to Ukraine since the war started. They have been kindly donated the use of a huge 44 tonne lorry to fill with essential supplies and aim to depart on 24 November. They are looking for donations of food, survival supplies and Christmas gifts for children – see the detailed list here. Drop off point is Axford Village Hall, Nr Marlborough SN8 2EZ. Open times: 10am to 2pm on Mon 7, Tue 8, Mon 21 and Tue 22 November.

• Lambourn Valley actress Catherine Chalk enjoys her debut role in mainstream cinema in the the film Hilma which will be showing at the Parade Marlborough on Thursday 17th November, before it goes on general release. The Guardian described  her performance as Anna Cassel as “terrific.”

• The Blackett Observatory at Marlborough College is holding a Public Open Evening on Saturday 19 November. There will be two sessions, one running from 6pm to 7.30pm and the second running from 8pm to 9.30pm. This will be a great opportunity to explore the night sky at the best observatory in Wiltshire. Children are welcome, but need to be at least 8 years old. It is free to attend, but you do need a ticket and spaces are limited.  Book here Astronomy at the Marlborough College Blackett Observatory .

Talking of cleaning up, help is requested with the autumn clean at Wilton Windmill on Sun 13 Nov to put the site into hibernation for the winter.

• Photographer Bob Holman is seeking help for his latest project called Marlborough Unseen from all local residents. Bob explains, “I want to capture what nobody would normally see in Marlborough. For example; there are cellars, underground storage areas, dungeons , sewers and other hidden areas of Marlborough that he is keen to illuminate. Full credit will be given to selected images posted on social media.

•  Ramsbury Royal British Legion is hosting a Quiz Night on Friday 4 November. Doors open at 7pm and the Quiz starts at 8pm/ Max of 6 players per team, at a cost of £1 pp for members and £2 pp for non members.Prizes for winning team.

• Marlborough Scouts looks forward to seeing you on Friday 4 November at Marlborough Scout Hut, in George Lane for Family Fireworks. Gates open at 6pm and there will be sparklers, burgers, sausages and drinks. Entry by donation on the gate.

• Remember remember the 5th of November…this year Pelican Inn in Froxfield will be celebrating with a Bonfire Night from 4pm, with a DJ from 7pm. Fireworks will begin at 7.30 and there will also be a Hog Roast.

• Quick reminder about Marlborough Town Council’s small grant scheme for local community or charity projects. Applications are considered by the Council at their Finance & Policy Committee Meetings which happen every few months. For more information about how to apply for the grant, visit the Town Council’s website.

Click here for the latest news from the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group about the continuing threat to direct rail services from Bedwyn, Hungerford and Kintbury to London. The struggle is far from over.

Christmas

• Marlborough Town Council is glad to announce that Christmas starts with the Marlborough Christmas Lights Switch On on Friday 18 November in Marlborough. The Christmas market will open in the High Street at 10am with street entertainment from around 5pm and lights on at 6.30pm. Bookings for market stalls are pretty much complete now, but don’t worry if you missed out – Preshute School is holding a Christmas Fair in the playground on 26 November – email preshuteppsa@gmail.com if you’re interested in having a stall there

• Last year £1,180 was raised by Marlborough residents for Christmas Care a charity in Swindon, and this year they are launching a new appeal for the same charity that gets accommodation for the homeless over the Christmas period. They are looking for any old pictures/paintings you have laying around collecting dust – for a one day £10 per picture sale in central Marlborough Saturday 5 November 5th from 9am-5pm. Please see christmascareswindon.org for full details.

• Local resident Kate Nicholls is running a Marlborough Toy Bank for Christmas on the first weekend of December. People will be able to choose gifts for their children/grandchildren, have them wrapped and take them home, ready for Christmas morning. If any of you have good quality used toys you would like to donate please contact Kate and she will let you know where to drop them off or collect. There will also be a collection basket in Tescos for pressies throughout November.

Slade Tribute Band Slyde will be appearing at The Memorial Hall, Marlborough College on 17 December at 7.30 pm. Tickets £15 in advance from mantonfest.co.uk and £20 on the door. Outside bar.

Community notices

Marlborough Community Fridge, located in the Community Room in the George/Figgins Lane Car Park (just behind the public loos) is free to access, there are no criteria that have to be met and it is a good way to use up surplus food from supermarkets and businesses that would otherwise go to waste. Please see their facebook page for more details.

Love Marlborough Kids is a great community initiative to make sure all Marlborough children have access to free meals during the current crisis and beyond. No fuss, no forms, no referrals. Just meals for families who need them. See here for how to apply.

• Anyone in the Marlborough area wanting to host or support Ukrainian refugees are invited to join this Facebook page: Ukrainians and their sponsors in Marlborough and surrounding areas. Or if you can volunteer to teach English please contact Nastia on nikasling@gmail.com.

Marlborough Fire Station is looking for new on-call recruits, ideally those who live or work within 5 minutes of the station. On-call firefighters are paid but they are not based at the station like full-time firefighters. They can have other jobs and commitments, only responding to emergencies when their alert goes off. Anyone over 18 with a good standard of physical fitness can apply. Please see Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue to find out more and fill out and application.

• For the latest information changes to rail services between Bedwyn, Newbury and Paddington we recommend following the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group.

Local events and activities

For more information on events and activities across the Penny Post area, see the website calendar.

• Dates for the diary

• see news and Christmas sections above

• Regular events

Kennet Vale Table Tennis Club at Kennet Valley Hall. Juniors meet on Fridays from 5.45 to 7 pm and they are always on the lookout for adults to play socially or competitively. Call Richard on 07568 648468 to book a space.

Carer Café  at the Jubilee Centre, 28 Marlborough High Street on the fourth Tuesday of the month, from 10:30am to noon. No Booking required. Join in on a relaxed chat over a hot drink with other carers and support workers or volunteers from Carer Support Wiltshire.

Rhyme Time for babies and toddlers, every Wednesday and Friday 11am 11.30am at Marlborough Library. If you don’t already have a library membership, please sign yourself and your child up before you attend.

Great Bedwyn Stay And Play is on Mondays term time 1pm to 2.30pm at Great Bedwyn Village Hall. There are games and free play with lots of themed music to enjoy with your little one. All are welcome. Prices for sessions can be found on their Facebook page.

• The Transition Marlborough Hub Group meet on the second Thursday of the month at 7.30pm currently by zoom. To get involved please email enquiries@transitionmarlborough.org.

• Marlborough Park Run is a free, weekly, timed five km walk, jog or run at 9am every Saturday. Open to all ages and abilities. Organised entirely by volunteers. Click here to see their Facebook page.

The Stroke Association monthly drop-in support sessions at The Jubilee Centre for stroke survivors, their families and carers on Monday mornings. See here for the next date. For more details contact Katie Fielding on 07908 952740 or katie.fielding@stroke.org.uk

• Marlborough Floral Club meets 2pm on the first Thursday of the month at the Mildenhall Village Hall. For details please see here or call Micky Graham on 01672 514301.

The Menopause Matters Marlborough facebook group provides a forum for women in Marlborough and the surrounding areas to access information and support relating to menopause.

The White Horse Bookshop is offering workshops until the end of the year, click here for the full list.

News from your local councils

Note: “the most recent meeting” refers to the most recent one for which minutes (in some cases draft) or some other summary is available. Other meetings may have taken place since. Some councils publish minutes more promptly than do others.

Many councils do not hold meetings in August and many postponed their September meeting following the Queen’s death. 

• The most recent full meeting of Marlborough Town Council for which minutes are available took place on 3 October and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: The Herbert Leaf Charity; plaques at the Recreation Ground; speeding; ambulance waiting times; the Mop Fairs; the Great West Way; the Civic Working Party; the cost-of-living crisis (see separate section above); the 2023-24 precept; financial matters; the Allotment Association; and committee reports.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Town Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for the latest on Marlborough’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Ramsbury & Axford Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 17 October and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: parish correspondence; warm spaces; planning matters; financial matters; rights of way; play areas and seats; the emergency committee; the green committee; “all well in Axford” (as it always seems to be – what a great place if must be to live); village maintenance; there allotments; the Parish Stewards; the School; and the Memorial Hall.
To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas and minutes, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Great Bedwyn Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 13 October and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: actions from the last meeting; speeding; councillor responsibilities; the Great Green Bedwyn Project; repairs and maintenance; financial matters; and planning matters.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here

• The most recent meeting of Chiseldon Parish Council for which minutes are available, took place on 10 October and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: reports from the ward members; financial matters; reports from the committees; village repairs and maintenance; and footpaths.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Wanborough Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 10 October and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: dogs on Hooper’s Field; repair and maintenance works around the parish; the Hooper’s Field project; CCTV; updates from local groups; and the tennis courts.
To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas and minutes, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Aldbourne Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 5 October and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: planning matters; virtual paths; repair and maintenance work around the parish; speeding; financial matters; the NDP; parking issues; speeding; assets of community value; warm spaces; tree works; a report from ward member James Sheppard; the emergency plan; and there tennis courts.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for more information on Aldbourne’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Bishopstone and Hinton Parva Parish Council, for which minutes are available took place on 3 October and you can download the minutes here. Items covered included: hedges; dog mess; litter-picking; signage relating to cattle; planning matters; a report from ward member Gary Sumner; broadband; defibrillators; and speeding.
To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 5 September and you can read the minutes here.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St George Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 7 July and you can read the minutes here.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• Click here for a list of current consultations being run by Wiltshire Council.

• Marlborough area council contacts

Parishes: Marlborough Town CouncilAldbourne Parish CouncilRamsbury & Axford Parish Council, Great Bedwyn Parish Council, Savernake Parish Council, Chiseldon Parish Council, Ogbourne St George Parish Council, Wanborough Parish CouncilBishopstone and Hinton Parva Parish Council  and Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council.

Wiltshire Council: click here to visit the website.

News from other areas

Penny Post area – please see the following separate sections: Hungerford area; Lambourn ValleyNewbury area; Thatcham area; Compton & DownlandsTheale area; Wantage area.

News and views from across the area and beyond: please see the most recent Weekly News with Brian column.

 

Thursday 27 October 2022

This week we have a clean-up, an observatory, Pam Ayres, photography, small grants and a climate talk involving the local MP: plus our usual round-up of other local news, local events and activities and news from your local councils.

This week’s news

• The Blackett Observatory at Marlborough College is holding a Public Open Evening on Saturday 19 November. There will be two sessions, one running from 6pm to 7.30pm and the second running from 8pm to 9.30pm. This will be a great opportunity to explore the night sky at the best observatory in Wiltshire. Children are welcome, but need to be at least 8 years old. It is free to attend, but you do need a ticket and spaces are limited.  Book here Astronomy at the Marlborough College Blackett Observatory .

• Have you heard of the ‘HallowClean’? It’s a week long initiative set by Tidy Up Britain to help keep or communities clean and tidy. The idea of the HallowClean is that you dress up in your scariest costume and go litter picking with your friends. Kind of like trick or treating but the real treat is a cleaner environment. You can even post #HallowClean with pictures in your costumes to let people know what you’re doing and maybe even more of your friends will want to get involved. Happy HallowClean.

Talking of cleaning up, help is requested with the autumn clean at Wilton Windmill on Sun 13 Nov to put the site into hibernation for the winter.

• There are still a few tickets left for the rescheduled LitFest talk with Pam Ayres on Friday 28 October at 7pm at Memorial Hall Marlborough College. The legendary writer, poet, broadcaster and entertainer  will be talking about her latest book, Who Are You Calling Vermin? Tickets available here: https://bit.ly/32hTiLj For anyone who bought tickets for the original LitFest event on 1 October, these will be transferred automatically to 28 October. However, if anyone is unable to attend, LitFest can arrange for a refund as follows.

• Photographer Bob Holman is seeking help for his latest project called Marlborough Unseen from all local residents. Bob explains, “I want to capture what nobody would normally see in Marlborough. For example; there are cellars, underground storage areas, dungeons , sewers and other hidden areas of Marlborough that he is keen to illuminate. Full credit will be given to selected images posted on social media.

•  Ramsbury Royal British Legion is hosting a Quiz Night on Friday 4 November. Doors open at 7pm and the Quiz starts at 8pm/ Max of 6 players per team, at a cost of £1 pp for members and £2 pp for non members.Prizes for winning team.

• Marlborough Scouts looks forward to seeing you on Friday 4 November at Marlborough Scout Hut, in George Lane for Family Fireworks. Gates open at 6pm and there will be sparklers, burgers, sausages and drinks. Entry by donation on the gate.

• Remember remember the 5th of November…this year Pelican Inn in Froxfield will be celebrating with a Bonfire Night from 4pm, with a DJ from 7pm. Fireworks will begin at 7.30 and there will also be a Hog Roast.

• Celebrate Halloween at The Merchants Hall – there will be a letter hunt, treats and a spooky story. Suitable for under eights. Booking essential via website www.themerchantshouse.co.uk or you can contact 01672 511491. £10 per person and all proceeds go to Merchants House Trust.

• Quick reminder about Marlborough Town Council’s small grant scheme for local community or charity projects. Applications are considered by the Council at their Finance & Policy Committee Meetings which happen every few months. For more information about how to apply for the grant, visit the Town Council’s website.

Click here for the latest news from the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group about the continuing threat to direct rail services from Bedwyn, Hungerford and Kintbury to London. The struggle is far from over.

Christmas

• Last year £1,180 was raised by Marlborough residents for Christmas Care a charity in Swindon, and this year they are launching a new appeal for the same charity that gets accommodation for the homeless over the Christmas period. They are looking for any old pictures/paintings you have laying around collecting dust – for a one day £10 per picture sale in central Marlborough Saturday 5 November 5th from 9am-5pm. Please see christmascareswindon.org for full details.

Keeping climate on the table

Now that national politics seems to have re-acquired some stability, many will be hoping that the issue of climate change will get some serious attention. Of all the problems facing the new government this is surely the most serious, if not the most immediately eye-catching.

One of the ways that we can ensure that this is at the front and centre of policy- and decision-making in SW1 is to ensure that our MPs are aware of the strength of feeling. So, hats off to the Marlborough Quakers who have invited Danny Kruger MP to talk about climate change in an open meeting at St Peter’s Church, Marlborough at 7pm on Thursday 10 November. Light refreshments are available. This is an opportunity to find out about the government’s strategy on climate and to raise concerns. Please see details here.

Community notices

Marlborough Community Fridge, located in the Community Room in the George/Figgins Lane Car Park (just behind the public loos) is free to access, there are no criteria that have to be met and it is a good way to use up surplus food from supermarkets and businesses that would otherwise go to waste. Please see their facebook page for more details.

Love Marlborough Kids is a great community initiative to make sure all Marlborough children have access to free meals during the current crisis and beyond. No fuss, no forms, no referrals. Just meals for families who need them. See here for how to apply.

• Anyone in the Marlborough area wanting to host or support Ukrainian refugees are invited to join this Facebook page: Ukrainians and their sponsors in Marlborough and surrounding areas. Or if you can volunteer to teach English please contact Nastia on nikasling@gmail.com.

Marlborough Fire Station is looking for new on-call recruits, ideally those who live or work within 5 minutes of the station. On-call firefighters are paid but they are not based at the station like full-time firefighters. They can have other jobs and commitments, only responding to emergencies when their alert goes off. Anyone over 18 with a good standard of physical fitness can apply. Please see Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue to find out more and fill out and application.

• For the latest information changes to rail services between Bedwyn, Newbury and Paddington we recommend following the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group.

Local events and activities

For more information on events and activities across the Penny Post area, see the website calendar.

• Dates for the diary

• Sat 29 Oct Halloween at The Merchants Hall

• Regular events

Kennet Vale Table Tennis Club at Kennet Valley Hall. Juniors meet on Fridays from 5.45 to 7 pm and they are always on the lookout for adults to play socially or competitively. Call Richard on 07568 648468 to book a space.

Carer Café  at the Jubilee Centre, 28 Marlborough High Street on the fourth Tuesday of the month, from 10:30am to noon. No Booking required. Join in on a relaxed chat over a hot drink with other carers and support workers or volunteers from Carer Support Wiltshire.

Rhyme Time for babies and toddlers, every Wednesday and Friday 11am 11.30am at Marlborough Library. If you don’t already have a library membership, please sign yourself and your child up before you attend.

Great Bedwyn Stay And Play is on Mondays term time 1pm to 2.30pm at Great Bedwyn Village Hall. There are games and free play with lots of themed music to enjoy with your little one. All are welcome. Prices for sessions can be found on their Facebook page.

• The Transition Marlborough Hub Group meet on the second Thursday of the month at 7.30pm currently by zoom. To get involved please email enquiries@transitionmarlborough.org.

• Marlborough Park Run is a free, weekly, timed five km walk, jog or run at 9am every Saturday. Open to all ages and abilities. Organised entirely by volunteers. Click here to see their Facebook page.

The Stroke Association monthly drop-in support sessions at The Jubilee Centre for stroke survivors, their families and carers on Monday mornings. See here for the next date. For more details contact Katie Fielding on 07908 952740 or katie.fielding@stroke.org.uk

• Marlborough Floral Club meets 2pm on the first Thursday of the month at the Mildenhall Village Hall. For details please see here or call Micky Graham on 01672 514301.

The Menopause Matters Marlborough facebook group provides a forum for women in Marlborough and the surrounding areas to access information and support relating to menopause.

The White Horse Bookshop is offering workshops until the end of the year, click here for the full list.

News from your local councils

Note: “the most recent meeting” refers to the most recent one for which minutes (in some cases draft) or some other summary is available. Other meetings may have taken place since. Some councils publish minutes more promptly than do others.

Many councils do not hold meetings in August and many postponed their September meeting following the Queen’s death. 

• The most recent full meeting of Marlborough Town Council for which minutes are available took place on 3 October and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: The Herbert Leaf Charity; plaques at the Recreation Ground; speeding; ambulance waiting times; the Mop Fairs; the Great West Way; the Civic Working Party; the cost-of-living crisis (see separate section above); the 2023-24 precept; financial matters; the Allotment Association; and committee reports.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Town Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for the latest on Marlborough’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Chiseldon Parish Council for which minutes are available, took place on 10 October and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: reports from the ward members; financial matters; reports from the committees; village repairs and maintenance; and footpaths.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Wanborough Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 10 October and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: dogs on Hooper’s Field; repair and maintenance works around the parish; the Hooper’s Field project; CCTV; updates from local groups; and the tennis courts.
To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas and minutes, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Aldbourne Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 5 October and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: planning matters; virtual paths; repair and maintenance work around the parish; speeding; financial matters; the NDP; parking issues; speeding; assets of community value; warm spaces; tree works; a report from ward member James Sheppard; the emergency plan; and there tennis courts.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for more information on Aldbourne’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Bishopstone and Hinton Parva Parish Council, for which minutes are available took place on 3 October and you can download the minutes here. Items covered included: hedges; dog mess; litter-picking; signage relating to cattle; planning matters; a report from ward member Gary Sumner; broadband; defibrillators; and speeding.
To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Ramsbury & Axford Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 26 September and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: council communications; council correspondence; planning matters; rights of way; play areas; the Emergency Committee; the Green Committee; the news that, despite a potentially fatal toad accident there on 24 September, “otherwise, all is well in Axford”; parish charities; highways and footpaths; village maintenance; the parish website; the allotments; the Parish Stewards; the School; the Recreation Centre; vandalism; and financial matters.
To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas and minutes, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 5 September and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: actions from the last meeting; the community pub project; village maintenance; defrillators; planning matters; financial matters; traffic on the A346; the River Og; highways; a vacancy for a parish councillor; and flooding issues.

• The most recent meeting of Great Bedwyn Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 14 July and you can read the minutes here.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St George Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 7 July and you can read the minutes here.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• Click here for a list of current consultations being run by Wiltshire Council.

• Marlborough area council contacts

Parishes: Marlborough Town CouncilAldbourne Parish CouncilRamsbury & Axford Parish Council, Great Bedwyn Parish Council, Savernake Parish Council, Chiseldon Parish Council, Ogbourne St George Parish Council, Wanborough Parish CouncilBishopstone and Hinton Parva Parish Council  and Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council.

Wiltshire Council: click here to visit the website.

News from other areas

Penny Post area – please see the following separate sections: Hungerford area; Lambourn ValleyNewbury area; Thatcham area; Compton & DownlandsTheale area; Wantage area.

News and views from across the area and beyond: please see the most recent Weekly News with Brian column.

 

Thursday 20 October 2022

This week we have an orchestra, Halloween, table tennis, first aid and a play area closure: plus our usual round-up of other local news, local events and activities and news from your local councils.

This week’s news

• This Saturday 22 October at 7.30 is an  opportunity to see 72 incredible musicians in the Fulltone Orchestra, playing music that really is out of this world, on your doorstep in Marlborough at The Memorial Hall. Book your tickets here (£20 ticket price to secure your seat and £40 for a family of 4).

• Coopers Meadow play area unfortunately has to be closed until further notice due to broken equipment.

• Marlborough Scouts look forward to seeing you on Friday 4 November at Marlborough Scout Hut, in George Lane for Family Fireworks. Gates open at 6pm and there will be sparklers, burgers, sausages and drinks. Entry by donation on the gate.

• Enjoy a Music Halloween Special on Thursday 27 and Friday 28 October at Manton, Marlborough from 9.30 – 12 pm . Bake and make Halloween treats while listening to classical and jazz music. Tickets £20 pp, book via kimemerypiano@yahoo,com or 07939 113488.

Love Marlborough Kids is a great community initiative to make sure all Marlborough children have access to free meals during the current crisis and beyond. No fuss, no forms, no referrals. Just meals for families who need them. See here for how to apply.

•  Learn Emergency First Aid at Work or Basic Life Support in Marlborough on Thursday 3 November or Paediatric First Aid on Wednesday 19 November with Worsley Training in Marlborough . For full details click here.

• Remember remember the 5th of November ….This year Pelican Inn  will be celebrating with a Bonfire Night from 4pm, with a DJ from 7pm. Fireworks will begin at 7.30 and there will also be a Hog Roast.

Half Term  Football Camp available in Marlborough for five to 16 year olds on 24 October from 8.45 to 2.30  at The Marlborough Youth Centre. Pre payment of £25 is required and packed lunches. football boots or trainers must be brought with you. Contact mattcosnett@soccerexcellence.co.uk or phone 07846 294174.

Rhyme Time for babies and toddlers, every Wednesday and Friday 11am 11.30am at Marlborough Library. If you don’t already have a library membership, please sign yourself and your child up before you attend.

• Celebrate Halloween at The Merchants Hall There will be a letter hunt, treats and a spooky story. Suitable for under 8’s. Booking essential via website www.themerchantshouse.co.uk or you can contact 01672 511491. £10 per person and all proceeds go to Merchants House Trust.

• Come and shake off the seasonal blues by joining the Kennet Vale Table Tennis Club at Kennet Valley Hall. Juniors meet on Fridays from 5.45 to 7 pm and while filling up fast there are still a few places left. Four teams of varying standards play in a local table tennis league, but they are always on the lookout for adults to play socially or competitively. Call Richard on 07568 648468 to book a space.

Hibernation and Migration at The Reserve at Rockley near Marlborough on Thursday 27 October is an opportunity to help install bird, bat, bug and hedgehog boxes and learn about migration and hibernation. Adults will enjoy assisting with the installation of nest boxes whilst the children can make dens, make hedgehogs and learn more about our visiting and departing nature friends. A warm drink will be provided but  bring snacks. This family session is aimed at slightly older children of 7+ (though younger siblings may attend and under 4s do not need a ticket). The event is free but please make sure you apply for a ticket for adults and children over 4. If nearer the time you can no longer attend the event please do let us know as we can then release your tickets for another family to enjoy. Sorry no dogs on this occasion.

• The Jubilee Centre, 28 High Street, Marlborough, is running a Carer Café on the fourth Tuesday of the month, from 10:30am to noon. No Booking required. Join in on a relaxed chat over a hot drink with other carers and support workers or volunteers from Carer Support Wiltshire.

• Quick reminder about Marlborough Town Council’s small grant scheme for local community or charity projects. Applications are considered by the Council at their Finance & Policy Committee Meetings which happen every few months. For more information about how to apply for the grant, visit the Town Council’s website.

Click here for the latest news from the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group about the continuing threat to direct rail services from Bedwyn, Hungerford and Kintbury to London. The struggle is far from over.

Community notices

Marlborough Community Fridge, located in the Community Room in the George/Figgins Lane Car Park (just behind the public loos) is free to access, there are no criteria that have to be met and it is a good way to use up surplus food from supermarkets and businesses that would otherwise go to waste. Please see their facebook page for more details.

• Anyone in the Marlborough area wanting to host or support Ukrainian refugees are invited to join this Facebook page: Ukrainians and their sponsors in Marlborough and surrounding areas. Or if you can volunteer to teach English please contact Nastia on nikasling@gmail.com.

Marlborough Fire Station is looking for new on-call recruits, ideally those who live or work within 5 minutes of the station. On-call firefighters are paid but they are not based at the station like full-time firefighters. They can have other jobs and commitments, only responding to emergencies when their alert goes off. Anyone over 18 with a good standard of physical fitness can apply. Please see Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue to find out more and fill out and application.

• For the latest information changes to rail services between Bedwyn, Newbury and Paddington we recommend following the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group.

Local events and activities

For more information on events and activities across the Penny Post area, see the website calendar.

• Dates for the diary

• Sat 29 Oct Halloween at The Merchants Hall

• Regular events

Great Bedwyn Stay And Play is on Mondays term time 1pm to 2.30pm at Great Bedwyn Village Hall. There are games and free play with lots of themed music to enjoy with your little one. All are welcome. Prices for sessions can be found on their Facebook page.

• The Transition Marlborough Hub Group meet on the second Thursday of the month at 7.30pm currently by zoom. To get involved please email enquiries@transitionmarlborough.org.

• Marlborough Park Run is a free, weekly, timed five km walk, jog or run at 9am every Saturday. Open to all ages and abilities. Organised entirely by volunteers. Click here to see their Facebook page.

The Stroke Association monthly drop-in support sessions at The Jubilee Centre for stroke survivors, their families and carers on Monday mornings. See here for the next date. For more details contact Katie Fielding on 07908 952740 or katie.fielding@stroke.org.uk

• Marlborough Floral Club meets 2pm on the first Thursday of the month at the Mildenhall Village Hall. For details please see here or call Micky Graham on 01672 514301.

The Menopause Matters Marlborough facebook group provides a forum for women in Marlborough and the surrounding areas to access information and support relating to menopause.

The White Horse Bookshop is offering workshops until the end of the year, click here for the full list.

News from your local councils

Note: “the most recent meeting” refers to the most recent one for which minutes (in some cases draft) or some other summary is available. Other meetings may have taken place since. Some councils publish minutes more promptly than do others.

Many councils do not hold meetings in August and many postponed their September meeting following the Queen’s death. 

• The most recent full meeting of Marlborough Town Council for which minutes are available took place on 3 October and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: The Herbert Leaf Charity; plaques at the Recreation Ground; speeding; ambulance waiting times; the Mop Fairs; the Great West Way; the Civic Working Party; the cost-of-living crisis (see separate section above); the 2023-24 precept; financial matters; the Allotment Association; and committee reports.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Town Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for the latest on Marlborough’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Wanborough Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 10 October and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: dogs on Hooper’s Field; repair and maintenance works around the parish; the Hooper’s Field project; CCTV; updates from local groups; and the tennis courts.
To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas and minutes, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Aldbourne Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 5 October and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: planning matters; virtual paths; repair and maintenance work around the parish; speeding; financial matters; the NDP; parking issues; speeding; assets of community value; warm spaces; tree works; a report from ward member James Sheppard; the emergency plan; and there tennis courts.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for more information on Aldbourne’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Bishopstone and Hinton Parva Parish Council, for which minutes are available took place on 3 October and you can download the minutes here. Items covered included: hedges; dog mess; litter-picking; signage relating to cattle; planning matters; a report from ward member Gary Sumner; broadband; defibrillators; and speeding.
To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Ramsbury & Axford Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 26 September and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: council communications; council correspondence; planning matters; rights of way; play areas; the Emergency Committee; the Green Committee; the news that, despite a potentially fatal toad accident there on 24 September, “otherwise, all is well in Axford”; parish charities; highways and footpaths; village maintenance; the parish website; the allotments; the Parish Stewards; the School; the Recreation Centre; vandalism; and financial matters.
To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas and minutes, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 5 September and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: actions from the last meeting; the community pub project; village maintenance; defrillators; planning matters; financial matters; traffic on the A346; the River Og; highways; a vacancy for a parish councillor; and flooding issues.

• The most recent meeting of Great Bedwyn Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 14 July and you can read the minutes here.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St George Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 7 July and you can read the minutes here.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Chiseldon Parish Council for which minutes are available, took place on 30 June and you can read the minutes here.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• Click here for a list of current consultations being run by Wiltshire Council.

• Marlborough area council contacts

Parishes: Marlborough Town CouncilAldbourne Parish CouncilRamsbury & Axford Parish Council, Great Bedwyn Parish Council, Savernake Parish Council, Chiseldon Parish Council, Ogbourne St George Parish Council, Wanborough Parish CouncilBishopstone and Hinton Parva Parish Council  and Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council.

Wiltshire Council: click here to visit the website.

News from other areas

Penny Post area – please see the following separate sections: Hungerford area; Lambourn ValleyNewbury area; Thatcham area; Compton & DownlandsTheale area; Wantage area.

News and views from across the area and beyond: please see the most recent Weekly News with Brian column.

 

Thursday 13 October 2022

This week we have kids, babies, football, nest boxes, grants and a carer café: plus our usual round-up of other local news, local events and activities and news from your local councils.

This week’s news

Love Marlborough Kids is a great community initiative to make sure all Marlborough children have access to free meals during the current crisis and beyond. No fuss, no forms, no referrals. Just meals for families who need them. See here for how to apply.

•  Celebrate the season with a Barn Dance and Harvest Supper on Saturday 15 October at St Mary’s Church, Marlborough from 6-8pm All are Welcome at this Bring and Share Supper. Donations Welcome

•  Learn Emergency First Aid at Work or Basic Life Support in Marlborough on Thursday 3 November or Paediatric First Aid on Wednesday 19 November with Worsley Training in Marlborough . For full details click here.

Marlborough Girls Rugby  team are looking for new players, if you know a girl aged 10-15 get them to come along next Monday 17 October at 7pm at the rugby club.

• Remember remember the 5th of November ….This year Pelican Inn  will be celebrating with a Bonfire Night from 4pm, with a DJ from 7pm. Fireworks will begin at 7.30 and there will also be a Hog Roast.

Half Term  Football Camp available in Marlborough for five to 16 year olds on 24 October from 8.45 to 2.30  at The Marlborough Youth Centre. Pre payment of £25 is required and packed lunches. football boots or trainers must be brought with you. Contact mattcosnett@soccerexcellence.co.uk or phone 07846 294174.

Rhyme Time for babies and toddlers, every Wednesday and Friday 11am 11.30am at Marlborough Library. If you don’t already have a library membership, please sign yourself and your child up before you attend.

• Celebrate Halloween at The Merchants Hall There will be a letter hunt, treats and a spooky story. Suitable for under 8’s. Booking essential via website www.themerchantshouse.co.uk or you can contact 01672 511491. £10 per person and all proceeds go to Merchants House Trust.

• Come and shake off the seasonal blues by joining the Kennet Vale Table Tennis Club at Kennet Valley Hall. Juniors meet on Fridays from 5.45 to 7 pm and while filling up fast there are still a few places left. Four teams of varying standards play in a local table tennis league, but they are always on the lookout for adults to play socially or competitively. Call Richard on 07568 648468 to book a space.

Hibernation and Migration at The Reserve at Rockley near Marlborough on Thursday 27 October is an opportunity to help install bird, bat, bug and hedgehog boxes and learn about migration and hibernation. Adults will enjoy assisting with the installation of nest boxes whilst the children can make dens, make hedgehogs and learn more about our visiting and departing nature friends. A warm drink will be provided but  bring snacks. This family session is aimed at slightly older children of 7+ (though younger siblings may attend and under 4s do not need a ticket). The event is free but please make sure you apply for a ticket for adults and children over 4. If nearer the time you can no longer attend the event please do let us know as we can then release your tickets for another family to enjoy. Sorry no dogs on this occasion.

• The Jubilee Centre, 28 High Street, Marlborough, is running a Carer Café on the fourth Tuesday of the month, from 10:30am to noon. No Booking required. Join in on a relaxed chat over a hot drink with other carers and support workers or volunteers from Carer Support Wiltshire.

• Quick reminder about Marlborough Town Council’s small grant scheme for local community or charity projects. Applications are considered by the Council at their Finance & Policy Committee Meetings which happen every few months. For more information about how to apply for the grant, visit the Town Council’s website.

Click here for the latest news from the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group about the continuing threat to direct rail services from Bedwyn, Hungerford and Kintbury to London. The struggle is far from over.

Community notices

Marlborough Community Fridge, located in the Community Room in the George/Figgins Lane Car Park (just behind the public loos) is free to access, there are no criteria that have to be met and it is a good way to use up surplus food from supermarkets and businesses that would otherwise go to waste. Please see their facebook page for more details.

• Anyone in the Marlborough area wanting to host or support Ukrainian refugees are invited to join this Facebook page: Ukrainians and their sponsors in Marlborough and surrounding areas. Or if you can volunteer to teach English please contact Nastia on nikasling@gmail.com.

Marlborough Fire Station is looking for new on-call recruits, ideally those who live or work within 5 minutes of the station. On-call firefighters are paid but they are not based at the station like full-time firefighters. They can have other jobs and commitments, only responding to emergencies when their alert goes off. Anyone over 18 with a good standard of physical fitness can apply. Please see Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue to find out more and fill out and application.

• For the latest information changes to rail services between Bedwyn, Newbury and Paddington we recommend following the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group.

Local events and activities

For more information on events and activities across the Penny Post area, see the website calendar.

• Dates for the diary

• Sat 15 Oct Marlborough Mops

• Sat 29 Oct Halloween at The Merchants Hall

• Regular events

Great Bedwyn Stay And Play is on Mondays term time 1pm to 2.30pm at Great Bedwyn Village Hall. There are games and free play with lots of themed music to enjoy with your little one. All are welcome. Prices for sessions can be found on their Facebook page.

• The Transition Marlborough Hub Group meet on the second Thursday of the month at 7.30pm currently by zoom. To get involved please email enquiries@transitionmarlborough.org.

• Marlborough Park Run is a free, weekly, timed five km walk, jog or run at 9am every Saturday. Open to all ages and abilities. Organised entirely by volunteers. Click here to see their Facebook page.

The Stroke Association monthly drop-in support sessions at The Jubilee Centre for stroke survivors, their families and carers on Monday mornings. See here for the next date. For more details contact Katie Fielding on 07908 952740 or katie.fielding@stroke.org.uk

• Marlborough Floral Club meets 2pm on the first Thursday of the month at the Mildenhall Village Hall. For details please see here or call Micky Graham on 01672 514301.

The Menopause Matters Marlborough facebook group provides a forum for women in Marlborough and the surrounding areas to access information and support relating to menopause.

The White Horse Bookshop is offering workshops until the end of the year, click here for the full list.

News from your local councils

Note: “the most recent meeting” refers to the most recent one for which minutes (in some cases draft) or some other summary is available. Other meetings may have taken place since. Some councils publish minutes more promptly than do others.

Many councils do not hold meetings in August and many postponed their September meeting following the Queen’s death. 

• The most recent full meeting of Marlborough Town Council for which minutes are available took place on 3 October and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: The Herbert Leaf Charity; plaques at the Recreation Ground; speeding; ambulance waiting times; the Mop Fairs; the Great West Way; the Civic Working Party; the cost-of-living crisis (see separate section above); the 2023-24 precept; financial matters; the Allotment Association; and committee reports.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Town Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for the latest on Marlborough’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Bishopstone and Hinton Parva Parish Council, for which minutes are available took place on 3 October and you can download the minutes here. Items covered included: hedges; dog mess; litter-picking; signage relating to cattle; planning matters; a report from ward member Gary Sumner; broadband; defibrillators; and speeding.
To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Ramsbury & Axford Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 26 September and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: council communications; council correspondence; planning matters; rights of way; play areas; the Emergency Committee; the Green Committee; the news that, despite a potentially fatal toad accident there on 24 September, “otherwise, all is well in Axford”; parish charities; highways and footpaths; village maintenance; the parish website; the allotments; the Parish Stewards; the School; the Recreation Centre; vandalism; and financial matters.
To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas and minutes, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Aldbourne Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 7 September and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: repairs and maintenance; highways; parking; financial matters; warm spaces; local events; the NDP; the virtual paths; and the Aldbourne Band.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for more information on Aldbourne’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 5 September and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: actions from the last meeting; the community pub project; village maintenance; defrillators; planning matters; financial matters; traffic on the A346; the River Og; highways; a vacancy for a parish councillor; and flooding issues. To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Wanborough Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 22 August and you can read the minutes here.
To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas and minutes, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Great Bedwyn Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 14 July and you can read the minutes here.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St George Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 7 July and you can read the minutes here.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Chiseldon Parish Council for which minutes are available, took place on 30 June and you can read the minutes here.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• Click here for a list of current consultations being run by Wiltshire Council.

• Marlborough area council contacts

Parishes: Marlborough Town CouncilAldbourne Parish CouncilRamsbury & Axford Parish Council, Great Bedwyn Parish Council, Savernake Parish Council, Chiseldon Parish Council, Ogbourne St George Parish Council, Wanborough Parish CouncilBishopstone and Hinton Parva Parish Council  and Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council.

Wiltshire Council: click here to visit the website.

News from other areas

Penny Post area – please see the following separate sections: Hungerford area; Lambourn ValleyNewbury area; Thatcham area; Compton & DownlandsTheale area; Wantage area.

News and views from across the area and beyond: please see the most recent Weekly News with Brian column.

Thursday 6 October 2022

This week we have mops, apples, nest boxes, table tennis and the Town Council’s response to the cost-of-living crisis. We also look at the neighbourhood development plan which seems to have shaken off a last-minute legal challenge and now only awaits a date for its referendum : plus our usual round-up of other local news, local events and activities and news from your local councils.

This week’s news

• Quick reminder that the world’s longest, non-stop relay ever attempted will be passing through Marlborough at the crack of dawn on Friday 7 October and the baton will be passed at Marlborough Community Fridge. The Running Out of Time relay in the name of climate action started in Glasgow, home of COP26 last year, and will finish in Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt, on 6 November for the start of COP27. Runners, cyclists and sailors will carry a baton containing a climate message that’ll be delivered to world leaders urging more support to help people tackle the climate crisis where they live. Mark Headley is running Stage 138 leaving George Lane Car Park Community Fridge, Marlborough at 6.35am aiming to arrive at to The Bell, Ramsbury at 8am. Keith MacIntosh will then take the baton on Stage 139 to Kintbury Corner Stores aiming to arrive at 9.40am.

• Come and shake off the seasonal blues by joining the Kennet Vale Table Tennis Club at Kennet Valley Hall. Juniors meet on Fridays from 5.45 to 7 pm and while filling up fast there are still a few places left. Four teams of varying standards play in a local table tennis league, but they are always on the lookout for adults to play socially or competitively. Call Richard on 07568 648468 to book a space.

Hibernation and Migration at The Reserve at Rockley near Marlborough on Thursday 27 October is an opportunity to help install bird, bat, bug and hedgehog boxes and learn about migration and hibernation. Adults will enjoy assisting with the installation of nest boxes whilst the children can make dens, make hedgehogs and learn more about our visiting and departing nature friends. A warm drink will be provided but  bring snacks. This family session is aimed at slightly older children of 7+ (though younger siblings may attend and under 4s do not need a ticket). The event is free but please make sure you apply for a ticket for adults and children over 4. If nearer the time you can no longer attend the event please do let us know as we can then release your tickets for another family to enjoy. Sorry no dogs on this occasion.

• The Jubilee Centre, 28 High Street, Marlborough, is running a Carer Cafe on the fourth Tuesday of the month, from 10:30am to noon. No Booking required. Join in on a relaxed chat over a hot drink with other carers and support workers or volunteers from Carer Support Wiltshire.

• Whether you live, work, shop, visit or play in Marlborough, the Town Council would like to hear what you love about Marlborough now: your ideas about what would make you love it more, and how you’d like to see it develop. Please complete this survey here by 11 October. The results will be incorporated into short- and long-term plans being developed by the Town Council to protect and enhance the town centre.  This will also make sure it is ready to take advantage of funding opportunities as they come along.

• It is hard to believe that Halloween is the next big event on the social calendar, but for the pumpkin producers this is a festival. There are two pick your own pumpkin sites that Marlborough residents can enjoy. The first takes place on 8/9 and 15/16 October between 10am and 4pm at Farmer Mark’s Pumpkin Patch in West Kennett.  The second opportunity is on the 15/16, 22/23 and 28/30 October 10am to 4pm at Easton Farm Pumpkin Patch in Easton Pewsey.

• Quick reminder about Marlborough Town Council’s small grant scheme for local community or charity projects. Applications are considered by the Council at their Finance & Policy Committee Meetings which happen every few months. For more information about how to apply for the grant, visit the Town Council’s website.

Click here for the latest news from the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group about the continuing threat to direct rail services from Bedwyn, Hungerford and Kintbury to London. The struggle is far from over.

Neighbourhood plan ready for the last hurdle

Neighbourhood development plans are long, complex and technical bits of work but, once created, they become as much part of the local plan for the parish or parishes involved as if the planning authority had written it itself. They cannot prevent development but they do a lot to control where this does and doesn’t take place and of what the nature of it should be.

The thing that final decides if the NDP gats “made” is a referendum of all the voters in the parish/es. This is the stage Marlborough’s has reached. Between 2013 and 2019, 881 NDPs passed their referendum and only six failed so there would seem little chance that Marlborough’s will not me made in its turn. It ain’t over til it’s over, of course, and I’m sure that those responsible for Marlborough’s will not be popping the champagne just yet.

The question of when the referendum will happen is harder to predict. One unexpected obstacle has recently been removed after the High Court refused permission for a legal challenge by a resident. This seems to have been based on little more than seeking to re-instate a cartographic error (since corrected) which would have given the applicant ammunition in a planning dispute with a neighbour. Marlborough Town Council issued the following press release on 6 October which we’re happy to reproduce below verbatim.

In August, Wiltshire Council suspended the Marlborough Neighbourhood Plan referendum after local resident Martin Ephson applied for a judicial review over a modification that had been made to a map showing land designated as valued open space.

On Tuesday 4 October, the High Court refused permission for Mr Ephson to challenge the Marlborough Neighbourhood Plan. The grounds for refusal were that the application was made after the non-extendable six-week statutory time limit to challenge the decision statement, which was originally dated 25 May 2022. The court also ruled that the grounds were “without arguable merit”. The judge also ordered Mr Ephson to pay the council’s costs for preparing the Acknowledgement of Service. Mr Ephson has seven days to apply for the decision to be re-considered.

Cllr Nick Botterill, Cabinet Member for Strategic Planning, said: “We’re delighted that this legal challenge has been dismissed, and we now expect to move forward with the important process of the Neighbourhood Plan referendum. It is important that a neighbourhood plan is in place for the Marlborough area as soon as possible as the local community has worked hard to prepare this plan.”

Richard Spencer-Williams, Town Clerk for Marlborough Town Council, said: “I am very pleased that the Marlborough Neighbourhood Plan can once again progress for the benefit of the community as a whole.”

The original referendum was due to be held on 11 August but was suspended following an order of the court. A new referendum date for the electoral areas in the parishes of Marlborough, Mildenhall and Savernake will be confirmed in due course.

To find out more about Neighbourhood Plans in Wiltshire, people should go to www.wiltshire.gov.uk/planning-neighbourhood. You can read more about the Marlborough Area Neighbourhood Plan here.

Assuming the applicant decides not to appeal, that would seem to that. The ball is then in Wiltshire CC’s court to fix a date for the referendum. As soon as we know more we’ll give this wide publicity in this column.

The cost-of-living crisis

This was discussed at the meeting of Marlborough Town Council on 3 October and the following is taken verbatim from the draft minutes (item 180/22):

Members noted a report provided by Councillor Cleasby and the notes of a recent collaborative meeting of interested support parties. Members considered what role the Town Council might take to support residents who may be impacted by the current cost of living crisis. Discussion points included:

  • Whether the Town Council should act as a co-ordination point to bring all support organisations together, similar to during the Coronavirus pandemic;
  • The importance of presenting information in a clear and understandable way;
  • Whether a co-ordination role should be created; whether an Officer or community volunteer could fulfil this role, and whether it should be paid;
  • Whether the Area Board could be approached to fund a co-ordinator role.

The following points were resolved: (i) that Councillors Cleasby, Luson and The Town Mayor are nominated to a partnership working party in support of a community response to support residents who may be impacted by the cost-of-living crisis; (ii) that Marlborough Town Council primarily adopts an enabling and coordinating role in the community response.

It was agreed that the proposal to agree how to provide support be deferred until after the next meeting of the partnership group.

Community notices

Marlborough Community Fridge, located in the Community Room in the George/Figgins Lane Car Park (just behind the public loos) is free to access, there are no criteria that have to be met and it is a good way to use up surplus food from supermarkets and businesses that would otherwise go to waste. Please see their facebook page for more details.

• Anyone in the Marlborough area wanting to host or support Ukrainian refugees are invited to join this Facebook page: Ukrainians and their sponsors in Marlborough and surrounding areas. Or if you can volunteer to teach English please contact Nastia on nikasling@gmail.com.

Marlborough Fire Station is looking for new on-call recruits, ideally those who live or work within 5 minutes of the station. On-call firefighters are paid but they are not based at the station like full-time firefighters. They can have other jobs and commitments, only responding to emergencies when their alert goes off. Anyone over 18 with a good standard of physical fitness can apply. Please see Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue to find out more and fill out and application.

• For the latest information changes to rail services between Bedwyn, Newbury and Paddington we recommend following the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group.

Local events and activities

For more information on events and activities across the Penny Post area, see the website calendar.

• Dates for the diary

• Sat 8 Oct Marlborough Mops

• Sat 15 Oct Marlborough Mops

• Regular events

Great Bedwyn Stay And Play is on Mondays term time 1pm to 2.30pm at Great Bedwyn Village Hall. There are games and free play with lots of themed music to enjoy with your little one. All are welcome. Prices for sessions can be found on their Facebook page.

• The Transition Marlborough Hub Group meet on the second Thursday of the month at 7.30pm currently by zoom. To get involved please email enquiries@transitionmarlborough.org.

• Marlborough Park Run is a free, weekly, timed five km walk, jog or run at 9am every Saturday. Open to all ages and abilities. Organised entirely by volunteers. Click here to see their Facebook page.

The Stroke Association monthly drop-in support sessions at The Jubilee Centre for stroke survivors, their families and carers on Monday mornings. See here for the next date. For more details contact Katie Fielding on 07908 952740 or katie.fielding@stroke.org.uk

• Marlborough Floral Club meets 2pm on the first Thursday of the month at the Mildenhall Village Hall. For details please see here or call Micky Graham on 01672 514301.

The Menopause Matters Marlborough facebook group provides a forum for women in Marlborough and the surrounding areas to access information and support relating to menopause.

The White Horse Bookshop is offering workshops until the end of the year, click here for the full list.

News from your local councils

Note: “the most recent meeting” refers to the most recent one for which minutes (in some cases draft) or some other summary is available. Other meetings may have taken place since. Some councils publish minutes more promptly than do others.

Many councils do not hold meetings in August and many postponed their September meeting following the Queen’s death. 

• The most recent full meeting of Marlborough Town Council for which minutes are available took place on 3 October and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: The Herbert Leaf Charity; plaques at the Recreation Ground; speeding; ambulance waiting times; the Mop Fairs; the Great West Way; the Civic Working Party; the cost-of-living crisis (see separate section above); the 2023-24 precept; financial matters; the Allotment Association; and committee reports.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Town Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for the latest on Marlborough’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Aldbourne Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 7 September and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: repairs and maintenance; highways; parking; financial matters; warm spaces; local events; the NDP; the virtual paths; and the Aldbourne Band.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for more information on Aldbourne’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 5 September and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: actions from the last meeting; the community pub project; village maintenance; defrillators; planning matters; financial matters; traffic on the A346; the River Og; highways; a vacancy for a parish councillor; and flooding issues.

• The most recent meeting of Bishopstone and Hinton Parva Parish Council, for which minutes are available took place on 5 September and you can download the minutes here. Items covered included: planning matters; a report from ward member Gary Sumner; obscured road signs; broadband; footpaths; financial matters; and the Community Speedwatch.
To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Wanborough Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 22 August and you can read the minutes here.
To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas and minutes, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Ramsbury & Axford Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 15 August and you can read the minutes here.
To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas and minutes, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Great Bedwyn Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 14 July and you can read the minutes here.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St George Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 7 July and you can read the minutes here.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Chiseldon Parish Council for which minutes are available, took place on 30 June and you can read the minutes here.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• Click here for a list of current consultations being run by Wiltshire Council.

• Marlborough area council contacts

Parishes: Marlborough Town CouncilAldbourne Parish CouncilRamsbury & Axford Parish Council, Great Bedwyn Parish Council, Savernake Parish Council, Chiseldon Parish Council, Ogbourne St George Parish Council, Wanborough Parish CouncilBishopstone and Hinton Parva Parish Council  and Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council.

Wiltshire Council: click here to visit the website.

News from other areas

Penny Post area – please see the following separate sections: Hungerford area; Lambourn ValleyNewbury area; Thatcham area; Compton & DownlandsTheale area; Wantage area.

News and views from across the area and beyond: please see the most recent Weekly News with Brian column.

Thursday 29 September 2022

This week we have a apples, literature, a re-opened play area and the return of the mops: plus our usual round-up of other local news, local events and activities and news from your local councils.

This week’s news

Marlborough Literary Festival is now underway offering an eclectic range of genres and speakers until Sunday 2 October. The legendary Pam Ayres will be entertaining audiences with poetry and readings from her new book, ‘Who Are You Calling Vermin’; Lucy Easthope will talk about being a world-leading authority on recovering from disaster in her book, ‘When the Dust Settles’; novelist and playwright James Runcie of The Granchester Mysteries series (TV and books) fame, tells the story of JS Bach writing of one of his greatest works through the eyes of an 11 year old living in the composer’s chaotic household in ‘The Great Passion’. Book your tickets now on 0333 666 3366, pop into The White Horse Bookshop or buy tickets online here.

Marlborough Mops is back in Marlborough High Street on Saturday 8 October and Saturday 15 October. Enjoy all the fun of the fair, with rides for kids and adults and refreshments too. And also be prepared for extended traffic delays of course…

The Great Marlborough Apple Harvest is underway and Marlborough Community Fridge is accepting donations, so that  your surplus eaters and cookers can be turned into gorgeous apple juice that will be given away  away at the fridge over the coming months . Donations will be received at the Fridge on Thursday 29, Friday 30 Sept & Saturday 1 Oct from 9am – 10.30am.

• Marlborough Town Council is delighted to report that Cooper’s Meadow Play Area has now been reopened.

• Whether you live, work, shop, visit or play in Marlborough, the Town Council would like to hear what you love about Marlborough now: your ideas about what would make you love it more, and how you’d like to see it develop. Please complete this survey here by 11 October. The results will be incorporated into short- and long-term plans being developed by the Town Council to protect and enhance the town centre.  This will also make sure it is ready to take advantage of funding opportunities as they come along.

• Worsley Training are running a Paediatric First Aid course on Friday 7 October in Marlborough, open to anyone that cares for babies or children. There are 12 and 6 hour options for childcare professionals, and a 4 hour non-accredited option for any parents, grandparents, babysitters and au pairs who want to learn what to do in an emergency. Details and online booking here.

• The world’s longest, non-stop relay ever attempted will be passing through Marlborough at the crack of dawn on Friday 7 October. The Running Out of Time relay in the name of climate action will start in Glasgow, home of COP26 last year, on 30 September and finish in Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt, on 6 November for the start of COP27, the next UN summit of world leaders discussing the climate crisis. Runners, cyclists and sailors will carry a baton containing a climate message that’ll be delivered to world leaders urging more support to help people tackle the climate crisis where they live. Mark Headley is running Stage 138 leaving George Lane Car Park Community Fridge, Marlborough at 6.35am aiming to arrive at to The Bell, Ramsbury at 8am. Keith MacIntosh will then take the baton on Stage 139 to Kintbury Corner Stores aiming to arrive at 9.40am.

• It is hard to believe that Halloween is the next big event on the social calendar, but for the pumpkin producers this is a festival. There are two pick your own pumpkin sites that Marlborough residents can enjoy. The first takes place on 8/9 and 15/16 October between 10am and 4pm at Farmer Mark’s Pumpkin Patch in West Kennett.  The second opportunity is on the 15/16, 22/23 and 28/30 October 10am to 4pm at Easton Farm Pumpkin Patch in Easton Pewsey.

• Quick reminder about Marlborough Town Council’s small grant scheme for local community or charity projects. Applications are considered by the Council at their Finance & Policy Committee Meetings which happen every few months. For more information about how to apply for the grant, visit the Town Council’s website.

Click here for the latest news from the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group about the continuing threat to direct rail services from Bedwyn, Hungerford and Kintbury to London. The struggle is far from over.

Community notices

Marlborough Community Fridge, located in the Community Room in the George/Figgins Lane Car Park (just behind the public loos) is free to access, there are no criteria that have to be met and it is a good way to use up surplus food from supermarkets and businesses that would otherwise go to waste. Please see their facebook page for more details.

• Anyone in the Marlborough area wanting to host or support Ukrainian refugees are invited to join this Facebook page: Ukrainians and their sponsors in Marlborough and surrounding areas. Or if you can volunteer to teach English please contact Nastia on nikasling@gmail.com.

Marlborough Fire Station is looking for new on-call recruits, ideally those who live or work within 5 minutes of the station. On-call firefighters are paid but they are not based at the station like full-time firefighters. They can have other jobs and commitments, only responding to emergencies when their alert goes off. Anyone over 18 with a good standard of physical fitness can apply. Please see Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue to find out more and fill out and application.

• For the latest information changes to rail services between Bedwyn, Newbury and Paddington we recommend following the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group.

Local events and activities

Note: following the death of Queen Elizabeth II on 8 September, some events over the following few days may be cancelled or postponed. Please check with the organisers.

For more information on events and activities across the Penny Post area, see the website calendar.

• Dates for the diary

Thur 29 Sept to 2 Oct  Marlborough Literary Festival.

• Regular events

Great Bedwyn Stay And Play is on Mondays term time 1pm to 2.30pm at Great Bedwyn Village Hall. There are games and free play with lots of themed music to enjoy with your little one. All are welcome. Prices for sessions can be found on their Facebook page.

• The Transition Marlborough Hub Group meet on the second Thursday of the month at 7.30pm currently by zoom. To get involved please email enquiries@transitionmarlborough.org.

• Marlborough Park Run is a free, weekly, timed five km walk, jog or run at 9am every Saturday. Open to all ages and abilities. Organised entirely by volunteers. Click here to see their Facebook page.

The Stroke Association monthly drop-in support sessions at The Jubilee Centre for stroke survivors, their families and carers on Monday mornings. See here for the next date. For more details contact Katie Fielding on 07908 952740 or katie.fielding@stroke.org.uk

• Marlborough Floral Club meets 2pm on the first Thursday of the month at the Mildenhall Village Hall. For details please see here or call Micky Graham on 01672 514301.

The Menopause Matters Marlborough facebook group provides a forum for women in Marlborough and the surrounding areas to access information and support relating to menopause.

The White Horse Bookshop is offering workshops until the end of the year, click here for the full list.

News from your local councils

Note that many parish and town councils do not hold meetings in August. In addition, meetings which were scheduled to have taken place during the period of mourning following the death of the Queen (8 to 19 September) would have been cancelled or postponed.

• The most recent full meeting of Marlborough Town Council for which minutes are available took place on 20 June and you can read the minutes here
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Town Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for the latest on Marlborough’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Aldbourne Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 7 September and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: repairs and maintenance; highways; parking; financial matters; warm spaces; local events; the NDP; the virtual paths; and the Aldbourne Band.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for more information on Aldbourne’s neighbourhood development plan.
To see the dates and agendas, please click here. To see the minutes, please click here

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 5 September and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: actions from the last meeting; the community pub project; village maintenance; defrillators; planning matters; financial matters; traffic on the A346; the River Og; highways; a vacancy for a parish councillor; and flooding issues.

• The most recent meeting of Bishopstone and Hinton Parva Parish Council, for which minutes are available took place on 5 September and you can download the minutes here. Items covered included: planning matters; a report from ward member Gary Sumner; obscured road signs; broadband; footpaths; financial matters; and the Community Speedwatch.
To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Wanborough Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 22 August and you can read the minutes here.
To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas and minutes, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Ramsbury & Axford Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 15 August and you can read the minutes here.
To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas and minutes, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Great Bedwyn Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 14 July and you can read the minutes here.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St George Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 7 July and you can read the minutes here.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Chiseldon Parish Council for which minutes are available, took place on 30 June and you can read the minutes here.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• Click here for a list of current consultations being run by Wiltshire Council.

• Marlborough area council contacts

Parishes: Marlborough Town CouncilAldbourne Parish CouncilRamsbury & Axford Parish Council, Great Bedwyn Parish Council, Savernake Parish Council, Chiseldon Parish Council, Ogbourne St George Parish Council, Wanborough Parish CouncilBishopstone and Hinton Parva Parish Council  and Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council.

Wiltshire Council: click here to visit the website.

News from other areas

Penny Post area – please see the following separate sections: Hungerford area; Lambourn ValleyNewbury area; Thatcham area; Compton & DownlandsTheale area; Wantage area.

News and views from across the area and beyond: please see the most recent Weekly News with Brian column.

 

Thursday 22 September 2022

This week we have a LitFest, what you love about the town, pumpkins and paediatric first aid. We also take a closer look at Marlborough’s Great Big Green Week: plus our usual round-up of other local news, local events and activities and news from your local councils.

This week’s news

• Sustainable Marlborough are running some great events for Marlborough’s first Great Big Green Week, kicking off with a Clothes Swap, Repair Cafe, outdoor Tai Chi and Sustainable Cooking this weekend. See full details below or visit their website here.

• Whether you live, work, shop, visit or play in Marlborough, the Town Council would like to hear what you love about Marlborough now: your ideas about what would make you love it more, and how you’d like to see it develop. Please complete this survey here by 11 October. The results will be incorporated into short- and long-term plans being developed by the Town Council to protect and enhance the town centre.  This will also make sure it is ready to take advantage of funding opportunities as they come along.

• The last normal opening day of Wilton Windmill in 2022 is this Sunday 25 September. There may be further events for volunteers (of which they are always are grateful for more…). See here for more details or contact secretary@wiltonwindmill.co.uk to go their mailing list.

• Only one week to go until Marlborough Literary Festival from Thursday 29 September to Sunday 2 October. From inimitable poetry to a moving memoir and a novel about Bach’s St Matthew Passion, don’t miss an eclectic range of genres at this year’s festival. The legendary Pam Ayres will be entertaining audiences with poetry and readings from her new book, ‘Who Are You Calling Vermin’; Lucy Easthope will talk about being a world-leading authority on recovering from disaster in her book, ‘When the Dust Settles’; novelist and playwright James Runcie of The Granchester Mysteries series (TV and books) fame, tells the story of JS Bach writing of one of his greatest works through the eyes of an 11 year old living in the composer’s chaotic household in ‘The Great Passion’. Book your tickets now on 0333 666 3366, pop into The White Horse Bookshop or buy tickets online here.

• Expecting Mums might be interested in this free Pregnancy Online Relaxation on Thursday 29 September 8.30-9pm. Book with Louise@nestleandnurture.com Relaxation is so important for birth – this is a chance to focus on you and your baby. These sessions are designed to help you put any anxieties to one side and relax for a good night’s sleep.

• Worsley Training are running a Paediatric First Aid course on Friday 7 October in Marlborough, open to anyone that cares for babies or children. There are 12 and 6 hour options for childcare professionals, and a 4 hour non-accredited option for any parents, grandparents, babysitters and au pairs who want to learn what to do in an emergency.Details and online booking here.

• The Running Out of Time relay will be the world’s longest, non-stop relay ever attempted. It’s being done in the name of climate action and it’s passing through Marlborough, at the crack of dawn, on Friday 7 October. The relay will start in Glasgow, home of COP26 last year, on 30 September and finish in Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt, on 6 November for the start of COP27, the next UN summit of world leaders discussing the climate crisis. Runners, cyclists and sailors will carry a baton containing a climate message that’ll be delivered to world leaders urging more support to help people tackle the climate crisis where they live.

• It is hard to believe that Halloween is the next big event on the social calendar, but for the pumpkin producers this is a festival. There are two pick your own pumpkin sites that Marlborough residents can enjoy. The first takes place on 8/9 and 15/16 October between 10am and 4pm at Farmer Mark’s Pumpkin Patch in West Kennett.  The second opportunity is on the 15/16, 22/23 and 28/30 October 10am to 4pm at Easton Farm Pumpkin Patch in Easton Pewsey.

• Quick reminder about Marlborough Town Council’s small grant scheme for local community or charity projects. Applications are considered by the Council at their Finance & Policy Committee Meetings which happen every few months. For more information about how to apply for the grant, visit the Town Council’s website.

Click here for the latest news from the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group about the continuing threat to direct rail services from Bedwyn, Hungerford and Kintbury to London. The struggle is far from over.

Marlborough’s first Great Big Green Week

Hayley Lambert from Packaging Not Inluded Zero Waste shop in Hughenden Yard is spearheading this new initiative to bring lots of green ideas and experiences to Marlborough from Saturday 24 to Friday 30 September. There is a wide range of wildlife and eco events from bat walk and moth trapping to sustainable cooking, repair cafe, outdoor Tai Chi and creative ways with rainwater. See the full schedule on their website here. It’s also worth following Sustainable Marlborough’s facebook page for latest news.

Why not sort-out your wardrobe and take some items along to the Clothes Swap on Saturday 24 September at 6.30 pm at The Town Hall to refresh your wardrobe for free. Or bring along your broken tech, household appliances or clothes that need a quick mend to the Repair Cafe on Sunday 25 September from 11am to 2pm for free. Green Machine Computers will be on hand to help you with tech issues and you can also donate unwanted phones, tablets or laptops to them. This is a great way to dispose of tech that you don’t want/need as everything gets securely wiped. Refreshments will be available.

There is even a magical opportunity for a tower tour of St Peter’s church with your hosts Mike and David to appreciate the night sky. You’ll get some history and anecdotes while climbing up to the tower roof where you’ll be surrounded by the beauty of the night sky as you experience the fantastic views. Please dress warmly as it will probably be chilly and windy up there.  This event is weather dependent as you will be exposed to the elements on the tower roof! Tickets cost £3. Book your place here (not suitable for under 13s).

Community notices

Marlborough Community Fridge, located in the Community Room in the George/Figgins Lane Car Park (just behind the public loos) is free to access, there are no criteria that have to be met and it is a good way to use up surplus food from supermarkets and businesses that would otherwise go to waste. Please see their facebook page for more details.

• Anyone in the Marlborough area wanting to host or support Ukrainian refugees are invited to join this Facebook page: Ukrainians and their sponsors in Marlborough and surrounding areas. Or if you can volunteer to teach English please contact Nastia on nikasling@gmail.com.

Marlborough Fire Station is looking for new on-call recruits, ideally those who live or work within 5 minutes of the station. On-call firefighters are paid but they are not based at the station like full-time firefighters. They can have other jobs and commitments, only responding to emergencies when their alert goes off. Anyone over 18 with a good standard of physical fitness can apply. Please see Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue to find out more and fill out and application.

• For the latest information changes to rail services between Bedwyn, Newbury and Paddington we recommend following the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group.

Local events and activities

Note: following the death of Queen Elizabeth II on 8 September, some events over the following few days may be cancelled or postponed. Please check with the organisers.

For more information on events and activities across the Penny Post area, see the website calendar.

• Dates for the diary

Sat 24 to Fri 30 Sept Marlborough’s Great Big Green Week.

Thur 29 Sept to 2 Oct  Marlborough Literary Festival.

• Regular events

Great Bedwyn Stay And Play is on Mondays term time 1pm to 2.30pm at Great Bedwyn Village Hall. There are games and free play with lots of themed music to enjoy with your little one. All are welcome. Prices for sessions can be found on their Facebook page.

• The Transition Marlborough Hub Group meet on the second Thursday of the month at 7.30pm currently by zoom. To get involved please email enquiries@transitionmarlborough.org.

• Marlborough Park Run is a free, weekly, timed five km walk, jog or run at 9am every Saturday. Open to all ages and abilities. Organised entirely by volunteers. Click here to see their Facebook page.

The Stroke Association monthly drop-in support sessions at The Jubilee Centre for stroke survivors, their families and carers on Monday mornings. See here for the next date. For more details contact Katie Fielding on 07908 952740 or katie.fielding@stroke.org.uk

• Marlborough Floral Club meets 2pm on the first Thursday of the month at the Mildenhall Village Hall. For details please see here or call Micky Graham on 01672 514301.

The Menopause Matters Marlborough facebook group provides a forum for women in Marlborough and the surrounding areas to access information and support relating to menopause.

The White Horse Bookshop is offering workshops until the end of the year, click here for the full list.

News from your local councils

Note that many parish and town councils do not hold meetings in August. In addition, meetings which were scheduled to have taken place during the period of mourning following the death of the Queen (8 to 19 September) would have been cancelled or postponed.

• The most recent full meeting of Marlborough Town Council for which minutes are available took place on 20 June and you can read the minutes here
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Town Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for the latest on Marlborough’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 5 September and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: actions from the last meeting; the community pub project; village maintenance; defrillators; planning matters; financial matters; traffic on the A346; the River Og; highways; a vacancy for a parish councillor; and flooding issues.

• The most recent meeting of Bishopstone and Hinton Parva Parish Council, for which minutes are available took place on 5 September and you can download the minutes here. Items covered included: planning matters; a report from ward member Gary Sumner; obscured road signs; broadband; footpaths; financial matters; and the Community Speedwatch.
To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Ramsbury & Axford Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 15 August and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: actions from the previous meeting; committee reports; planning matters; financial matters; play areas; the emergency committee; the green committee; maintenance and repairs across the parish; the public toilets; and the surgery.
To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas and minutes, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Wanborough Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 25 July and you can read the minutes here.
To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas and minutes, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Great Bedwyn Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 14 July and you can read the minutes here.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. There was also an extraordinary meeting on 28 February, the minutes of which you can read here, to vote on the contractor to install the memorial bench at Spaines.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St George Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 7 July and you can read the minutes here.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Aldbourne Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 6 July and you can read the minutes here.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for more information on Aldbourne’s neighbourhood development plan.

To see the dates and agendas, please click here. To see the minutes, please click here

• The most recent meeting of Chiseldon Parish Council for which minutes are available, took place on 30 June and you can read the minutes here.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• Click here for a list of current consultations being run by Wiltshire Council.

• Marlborough area council contacts

Parishes: Marlborough Town CouncilAldbourne Parish CouncilRamsbury & Axford Parish Council, Great Bedwyn Parish Council, Savernake Parish Council, Chiseldon Parish Council, Ogbourne St George Parish Council, Wanborough Parish CouncilBishopstone and Hinton Parva Parish Council  and Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council.

Wiltshire Council: click here to visit the website.

News from other areas

Penny Post area – please see the following separate sections: Hungerford area; Lambourn ValleyNewbury area; Thatcham area; Compton & DownlandsTheale area; Wantage area.

News and views from across the area and beyond: please see the most recent Weekly News with Brian column.

 

Thursday 15 September 2022

This week we have local mourning for the Queen, a green week, a tower and a LitFest: plus our usual round-up of other local news, local events and activities and news from your local councils.

Note: due to the period of mourning which will end after the Queen’s funeral on Monday 19 September, a number of events and activities may be postponed or cancelled, perhaps at short notice. We have highlighted those that we are aware of but you are advised to check in advance with the organisers.

This week’s news

• The Parade Cinema in Marlborough is live streaming the Queen’s funeral on Monday 19 September. Tickets are free and can be booked here.

Marlborough Town Council invites anyone wishing to sign the book of condolence for HM Queen Elizabeth II to call in to the foyer of Marlborough Town Hall, which will be open from 10am to 4pm, Monday to Friday. You are also welcome lay flowers at the side of the Town Hall steps.  Please check the Town Council’s facebook page for timings.

Marlborough’s first Big Green Week is from 24 to 30 September. See the full schedule on Sustainable Marlborough’s facebook page which includes a Repair Café, Tai Chi on the Common, low energy cooking, clothes swap, greening your business, Jen Gale Sustainable (ish), exploring local green spaces, bat walk and creative ways with rainwater.

• A new event has been added to the already full schedule of the Big Green Week – a magical chance of a tower tour of St Peter’s church with your hosts Mike and David to appreciate the night sky. You’ll get some history and anecdotes while climbing up to the tower roof where you’ll be surrounded by the beauty of the night sky as you experience the fantastic views. Please dress warmly as it will probably be chilly and windy up there. Not suitable for under 13s. This event is weather dependent as you will be exposed to the elements on the tower roof! Tickets cost £3. Book your place here.

•  Only two weeks to go until Marlborough Literary Festival between Thursday 29 September and Sunday 2 October. From inimitable poetry to a moving memoir and a novel about Bach’s St Matthew Passion, don’t miss an eclectic range of genres at this year’s festival. The legendary Pam Ayres will be entertaining audiences with poetry and readings from her new book, ‘Who Are You Calling Vermin’; Lucy Easthope will talk about being a world-leading authority on recovering from disaster in her book, ‘When the Dust Settles’; novelist and playwright James Runcie of The Granchester Mysteries series (TV and books) fame, tells the story of JS Bach writing of one of his greatest works through the eyes of an 11 year old living in the composer’s chaotic household in ‘The Great Passion’. Book your tickets now on 0333 666 3366, pop into The White Horse Bookshop or buy tickets online here.

Artist Jessica Hill is exhibiting her paintings in her ‘Landscapes’ exhibition at The White Horse Gallery in Marlborough until 2nd October.

• Marlborough Community Fridge is receiving generous donations of apples and other fresh produce as well as cupboard staples. They are located in the Community Room in the George/Figgins Lane Car Park (just behind the public loos) and usually open from 9am to 10.30am on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays but do check their facebook page for regular updates.

Marlborough Youth FC Under 14s mixed team is looking for new players to join this season. They compete in the Wilts Northern League, and need more players as they move from a 9-a-side team to an 11-a-side squad. See details here or contact Bryan on bryanrumbold@gmail.com.

• Quick reminder about Marlborough Town Council’s small grant scheme for local community or charity projects. Applications are considered by the Council at their Finance & Policy Committee Meetings which happen every few months. For more information about how to apply for the grant, visit the Town Council’s website.

Click here for the latest news from the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group about the continuing threat to direct rail services from Bedwyn, Hungerford and Kintbury to London. The struggle is far from over.

Community notices

Marlborough Community Fridge, located in the Community Room in the George/Figgins Lane Car Park (just behind the public loos) is free to access, there are no criteria that have to be met and it is a good way to use up surplus food from supermarkets and businesses that would otherwise go to waste. Please see their facebook page for more details.

• Anyone in the Marlborough area wanting to host or support Ukrainian refugees are invited to join this Facebook page: Ukrainians and their sponsors in Marlborough and surrounding areas. Or if you can volunteer to teach English please contact Nastia on nikasling@gmail.com.

Marlborough Fire Station is looking for new on-call recruits, ideally those who live or work within 5 minutes of the station. On-call firefighters are paid but they are not based at the station like full-time firefighters. They can have other jobs and commitments, only responding to emergencies when their alert goes off. Anyone over 18 with a good standard of physical fitness can apply. Please see Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue to find out more and fill out and application.

Wilton Windmill is open to the public on Sundays and Bank Holidays, until the end of the season in September. Visitors are encouraged to bring their own picnics, hot and cold drinks, ice creams and cakes will be available in the shepherd’s hut. See more on the Wilton Windmill website here.

• For the latest information changes to rail services between Bedwyn, Newbury and Paddington we recommend following the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group.

Local events and activities

Note: following the death of Queen Elizabeth II on 8 September, some events over the following few days may be cancelled or postponed. Please check with the organisers.

For more information on events and activities across the Penny Post area, see the website calendar.

• Dates for the diary

Thur 29 Sept to 2 Oct  Marlborough Literary Festival.

Sat 24 to Fri 30 Sept Marlborough’s Big Green Week.

• Regular events

Great Bedwyn Stay And Play is on Mondays term time 1pm to 2.30pm at Great Bedwyn Village Hall. There are games and free play with lots of themed music to enjoy with your little one. All are welcome. Prices for sessions can be found on their Facebook page.

• The Transition Marlborough Hub Group meet on the second Thursday of the month at 7.30pm currently by zoom. To get involved please email enquiries@transitionmarlborough.org.

• Marlborough Park Run is a free, weekly, timed five km walk, jog or run at 9am every Saturday. Open to all ages and abilities. Organised entirely by volunteers. Click here to see their Facebook page.

The Stroke Association monthly drop-in support sessions at The Jubilee Centre for stroke survivors, their families and carers on Monday mornings. See here for the next date. For more details contact Katie Fielding on 07908 952740 or katie.fielding@stroke.org.uk

• Marlborough Floral Club meets 2pm on the first Thursday of the month at the Mildenhall Village Hall. For details please see here or call Micky Graham on 01672 514301.

The Menopause Matters Marlborough facebook group provides a forum for women in Marlborough and the surrounding areas to access information and support relating to menopause.

The White Horse Bookshop is offering workshops until the end of the year, click here for the full list.

News from your local councils

• The most recent full meeting of Marlborough Town Council for which minutes are available took place on 20 June and you can read the minutes here
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Town Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for the latest on Marlborough’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 5 September and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: actions from the last meeting; the community pub project; village maintenance; defrillators; planning matters; financial matters; traffic on the A346; the River Og; highways; a vacancy for a parish councillor; and flooding issues.

• The most recent meeting of Bishopstone and Hinton Parva Parish Council, for which minutes are available took place on 5 September and you can download the minutes here. Items covered included: planning matters; a report from ward member Gary Sumner; obscured road signs; broadband; footpaths; financial matters; and the Community Speedwatch.
To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Ramsbury & Axford Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 15 August and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: actions from the previous meeting; committee reports; planning matters; financial matters; play areas; the emergency committee; the green committee; maintenance and repairs across the parish; the public toilets; and the surgery.
To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas and minutes, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Wanborough Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 25 July and you can read the minutes here.
To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas and minutes, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Great Bedwyn Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 14 July and you can read the minutes here.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. There was also an extraordinary meeting on 28 February, the minutes of which you can read here, to vote on the contractor to install the memorial bench at Spaines.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St George Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 7 July and you can read the minutes here.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Aldbourne Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 6 July and you can read the minutes here.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for more information on Aldbourne’s neighbourhood development plan.

To see the dates and agendas, please click here. To see the minutes, please click here

• The most recent meeting of Chiseldon Parish Council for which minutes are available, took place on 30 June and you can read the minutes here.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• Click here for a list of current consultations being run by Wiltshire Council.

• Marlborough area council contacts

Parishes: Marlborough Town CouncilAldbourne Parish CouncilRamsbury & Axford Parish Council, Great Bedwyn Parish Council, Savernake Parish Council, Chiseldon Parish Council, Ogbourne St George Parish Council, Wanborough Parish CouncilBishopstone and Hinton Parva Parish Council  and Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council.

Wiltshire Council: click here to visit the website.

News from other areas

Penny Post area – please see the following separate sections: Hungerford area; Lambourn ValleyNewbury area; Thatcham area; Compton & DownlandsTheale area; Wantage area.

News and views from across the area and beyond: please see the most recent Weekly News with Briancolumn.

 

Friday 9 September 2022

This week we have local mourning for the Queen, literature, stay and play, a mixed team and pumpkins: plus our usual round-up of other local news, local events and activities and news from your local councils.

This week’s news

Marlborough Town Council invites anyone wishing to sign the book of condolence for HM Queen Elizabeth II to call in to the foyer of Marlborough Town Hall, which will be open from 10am to 4pm, Monday to Friday. You are also welcome lay flowers at the side of the Town Hall steps (please just bear in mind there’s a wedding taking place there on Saturday). The Union Flag is flying at half mast at Marlborough Town Hall and will be raised to mark the Proclamation of King Charles III and then lowered back to half mast on Sunday 11 September after the local Proclamation which will be led by our Town Mayor, Councillor Lisa Farrell, and will take place on the steps of the Town Hall at the new time of 1.15pm. All residents are invited to attend. Please check the Town Council’s facebook page for timings.

• Tickets are selling fast for Marlborough Literary Festival between Thursday 29 September and Sunday 2 October. See the schedule here for a wonderful range of events from poetry to explorer Benedict Allen, Pam Eyres to Grimm’s Fairy Tales, Stonehenge to the company of whales.

Great Bedwyn Stay And Play is back on Mondays term time 1pm to 2.30pm at Great Bedwyn Village Hall. There are games and free play with lots of themed music to enjoy with your little one. All are welcome. Prices for sessions can be found on their Facebook page.

• Marlborough Community Fridge is receiving generous donations of apples and other fresh produce as well as cupboard staples. They are located in the Community Room in the George/Figgins Lane Car Park (just behind the public loos) and usually open from 9am to 10.30am on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays but do check their facebook page for regular updates.

Marlborough Youth FC Under 14s mixed team is looking for new players to join this season. They compete in the Wilts Northern League, and need more players as they move from a 9-a-side team to an 11-a-side squad. See details here or contact Bryan on bryanrumbold@gmail.com.

• It is hard to believe that Halloween is the next big event on the social calendar, but for the pumpkin producers this is a festival. There are two pick your own pumpkin sites that Marlborough residents can enjoy. The first takes place on 8/9 and 15/16 October between 10am and 4pm at Farmer Mark’s Pumpkin Patch in West Kennett.  The second opportunity is on the 15/16, 22/23 and 28/30 October 10am to 4pm at Easton Farm Pumpkin Patch in Easton Pewsey.

Marlborough’s first Big Green Week is from 24 to 30 September. See the full schedule on Sustainable Marlborough’s facebook page which includes a Repair Café at Marlborough Town Hall on Sunday 25 September. Bring along your broken tech, household appliances or clothes that need a quick mend. The fixers will have a go at repairing them for you, for free. Green Machine Computers will also be on hand to help with tech issues and you can also donate unwanted phones, tablets or laptops to Green Machine. This is a great way to dispose of tech that you don’t want/need as everything gets securely wiped. Refreshments will be available

• There are still places available to join the Marlborough bereavement support group on Monday 19 September from 2pm to 3.30pm.The meetings are supported by those with experience of working with those in pre and post bereavement phases. To find out more see this facebook page or email findingasnippetofsunshine@gmail.com.  

• Quick reminder about Marlborough Town Council’s small grant scheme for local community or charity projects. Applications are considered by the Council at their Finance & Policy Committee Meetings which happen every few months. For more information about how to apply for the grant, visit the Town Council’s website.

Click here for the latest news from the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group about the continuing threat to direct rail services from Bedwyn, Hungerford and Kintbury to London. The struggle is far from over.

Community notices

Marlborough Community Fridge, located in the Community Room in the George/Figgins Lane Car Park (just behind the public loos) is free to access, there are no criteria that have to be met and it is a good way to use up surplus food from supermarkets and businesses that would otherwise go to waste. Please see their facebook page for more details.

• Anyone in the Marlborough area wanting to host or support Ukrainian refugees are invited to join this Facebook page: Ukrainians and their sponsors in Marlborough and surrounding areas. Or if you can volunteer to teach English please contact Nastia on nikasling@gmail.com.

Marlborough Fire Station is looking for new on-call recruits, ideally those who live or work within 5 minutes of the station. On-call firefighters are paid but they are not based at the station like full-time firefighters. They can have other jobs and commitments, only responding to emergencies when their alert goes off. Anyone over 18 with a good standard of physical fitness can apply. Please see Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue to find out more and fill out and application.

Wilton Windmill is open to the public on Sundays and Bank Holidays, until the end of the season in September. Visitors are encouraged to bring their own picnics, hot and cold drinks, ice creams and cakes will be available in the shepherd’s hut. See more on the Wilton Windmill website here.

• For the latest information changes to rail services between Bedwyn, Newbury and Paddington we recommend following the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group.

Local events and activities

Note: following the death of Queen Elizabeth II on 8 September, some events over the following few days may be cancelled or postponed. Please check with the organisers.

For more information on events and activities across the Penny Post area, see the website calendar.

• Dates for the diary

Thur 29 Sept to 2 Oct  Marlborough Literary Festival.

Sat 24 to Fri 30 Sept Marlborough’s Big Green Week.

• Regular events

• The Transition Marlborough Hub Group meet on the second Thursday of the month at 7.30pm currently by zoom. To get involved please email enquiries@transitionmarlborough.org.

• Marlborough Park Run is a free, weekly, timed five km walk, jog or run at 9am every Saturday. Open to all ages and abilities. Organised entirely by volunteers. Click here to see their Facebook page.

The Stroke Association monthly drop-in support sessions at The Jubilee Centre for stroke survivors, their families and carers on Monday mornings. See here for the next date. For more details contact Katie Fielding on 07908 952740 or katie.fielding@stroke.org.uk

• Marlborough Floral Club meets 2pm on the first Thursday of the month at the Mildenhall Village Hall. For details please see here or call Micky Graham on 01672 514301.

The Menopause Matters Marlborough facebook group provides a forum for women in Marlborough and the surrounding areas to access information and support relating to menopause.

The White Horse Bookshop is offering workshops until the end of the year, click here for the full list.

News from your local councils

• The most recent full meeting of Marlborough Town Council for which minutes are available took place on 20 June and you can read the minutes here
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Town Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for the latest on Marlborough’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Ramsbury & Axford Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 15 August and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: actions from the previous meeting; committee reports; planning matters; financial matters; play areas; the emergency committee; the green committee; maintenance and repairs across the parish; the public toilets; and the surgery.
To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas and minutes, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Bishopstone and Hinton Parva Parish Council, for which minutes are available took place on 8 August and you can download the minutes here. Items covered included: planning matters; broadband; footpaths and highways; and financial matters.
To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Wanborough Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 25 July and you can read the minutes here.
To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas and minutes, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Great Bedwyn Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 14 July and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the refurbishment of The Wharf; councillor co-option; actions from the previous meeting; a village handyman; tree maintenance; financial matters; planning matters; grants to local organisations; the playground; and a new apple tree.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. There was also an extraordinary meeting on 28 February, the minutes of which you can read here, to vote on the contractor to install the memorial bench at Spaines.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St George Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 7 July and you can read the minutes here.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Aldbourne Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 6 July and you can read the minutes here.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for more information on Aldbourne’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 4 July and you can read the minutes here. To see the dates and agendas, please click here. To see the minutes, please click here

• The most recent meeting of Chiseldon Parish Council for which minutes are available, took place on 30 June and you can read the minutes here.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• Click here for a list of current consultations being run by Wiltshire Council.

• Marlborough area council contacts

Parishes: Marlborough Town CouncilAldbourne Parish CouncilRamsbury & Axford Parish Council, Great Bedwyn Parish Council, Savernake Parish Council, Chiseldon Parish Council, Ogbourne St George Parish Council, Wanborough Parish CouncilBishopstone and Hinton Parva Parish Council  and Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council.

Wiltshire Council: click here to visit the website.

News from other areas

Penny Post area – please see the following separate sections: Hungerford area; Lambourn ValleyNewbury area; Thatcham area; Compton & DownlandsTheale area; Wantage area.

 

Thursday 1 September 2022

We didn’t do a news update for 1 September 2022 as were having a week off. However, the 25 August section below will include much information that’s still relevant, including regarding community organisations and recurring events (please email penny@pennypost.org.uk if you would like information about your organisation to be included here).

Many of the news items that we covered last week also remain relevant as they relate to issues that are still active or to events that are yet to take place. The normal service of updating these will resume on 8 September.

Thursday 25 August 2022

This week we have a circus, classic cars, a boot sale and a grant scheme: plus our usual round-up of other local news, local events and activities and news from your local councils.

This week’s news

• The circus is back in town – Giffords Circus that is, will be on Marlborough Common until Monday 5 September. We haven’t been to Giffords since our boys were little but their shows are always entertaining and very creative.

• Marlborough Rotary’s Bank Holiday car boot sale is on the common at Marlborough Rugby Club from 8am to noon on Monday 29 August. See more on Rotary’s facebook page here.

Burbage and Easton Royal Cricket Club invite supporters to come and watch their fixture on Saturday 27 August against Cheltenham and lend their support. There will be an all day bar serving burgers, followed by a 70s dance night from 7pm, celebrating vinyl records. See more on their facebook page here. What a great way to seal the summer holidays.

Marlborough Classics next car meet is going to be at Ramsbury Brewery on Saturday 3 September from 11am – 3pm. Entry is free so take along your classic car or just go along to admire the vehicles and enjoy food and beer. See more on their facebook group here.

• Hayley from Packaging Not Included zero waste shop in Hughenden Yard is putting together a great programme for Marlborough’s first Big Green Week from 24 to 30 September. Follow Sustainable Marlborough’s new facebook page for more details.

• Quick reminder about the hosepipe ban that was introduced this week as whatever rain we now have still isn’t enough to replenish the low water levels in reservoirs and rivers. You can still use mains water to fill watering cans and buckets, and gardeners say this is a more efficient way to the water the garden so please make every drop count. There are exemptions for Blue Badge holders, or those on Thames Water’s Priority Register with restricted mobility, who find carrying a bucket or watering can difficult. And while the temporary ban does not cover businesses, Thames Water is asking businesses across its area to be mindful of the drought and to use water wisely, for example, by not washing commercial vehicles or turning off water features on their properties. See more details here.

• Essential work by Thames Water is the cause of the four-way traffic light system in Marlborough, by the Tesco supermarket. Any enquiries should be directed to 0800 316 9800.

• Quick reminder about Marlborough Town Council’s small grant scheme for local community or charity projects. Applications are considered by the Council at their Finance & Policy Committee Meetings which happen every few months. For more information about how to apply for the grant, visit the Town Council’s website.

• For ideas of what to do with the kids this summer, see our Guide to Summer Fun which includes geocaching in the Savernake Forest and free kids gardening sessions in Aldbourne.

• Some roadworks news here as the town council has warned that roadworks could be set until 2023 as superfast broadband is being introduced into the town. Works are set to be in place until April 2023 and the workers have been urged to not complete construction between rush hours. See more here in the Gazette and Herald.

Click here for the latest news from the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group about the continuing threat to direct rail services from Bedwyn, Hungerford and Kintbury to London. The struggle is far from over.

Community notices

Marlborough Community Fridge, located in the Community Room in the George/Figgins Lane Car Park (just behind the public loos) is open 9am to 11am on Thursdays and Fridays and 9am to 12pm on Saturdays. The fridge is free to access, there are no criteria that have to be met and it is a good way to use up surplus food from supermarkets and businesses that would otherwise go to waste. Please see their facebook page for more details.

• Anyone in the Marlborough area wanting to host or support Ukrainian refugees are invited to join this Facebook page: Ukrainians and their sponsors in Marlborough and surrounding areas. Or if you can volunteer to teach English please contact Nastia on nikasling@gmail.com.

Marlborough Fire Station is looking for new on-call recruits, ideally those who live or work within 5 minutes of the station. On-call firefighters are paid but they are not based at the station like full-time firefighters. They can have other jobs and commitments, only responding to emergencies when their alert goes off. Anyone over 18 with a good standard of physical fitness can apply. Please see Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue to find out more and fill out and application.

Wilton Windmill is open to the public on Sundays and Bank Holidays, until the end of the season in September. Visitors are encouraged to bring their own picnics, hot and cold drinks, ice creams and cakes will be available in the shepherd’s hut. See more on the Wilton Windmill website here.

• For the latest information changes to rail services between Bedwyn, Newbury and Paddington we recommend following the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group.

Local events and activities

For more information on events and activities across the Penny Post area, see the website calendar.

• Dates for the diary

Sat 27 Aug Dance Night at The Pelican Inn, Froxfield.

Sun 28 & Mon 29 Aug Crofton Beam Engines in Steam

• Mon 29 Aug Marlborough Rotary’s Car Boot Sale

Sat 3 Sept Marlborough Classic Car Meet, Ramsbury Brewery.

Sept 24 – 30 Great Big Green Week Marlborough

Thur 29 Sept to 2 Oct  Marlborough Literary Festival.

• Regular events

• The Transition Marlborough Hub Group meet on the second Thursday of the month at 7.30pm currently by zoom. To get involved please email enquiries@transitionmarlborough.org.

• Marlborough Park Run is a free, weekly, timed five km walk, jog or run at 9am every Saturday. Open to all ages and abilities. Organised entirely by volunteers. Click here to see their Facebook page.

The Stroke Association monthly drop-in support sessions at The Jubilee Centre for stroke survivors, their families and carers on Monday mornings. See here for the next date. For more details contact Katie Fielding on 07908 952740 or katie.fielding@stroke.org.uk

• Marlborough Floral Club meets 2pm on the first Thursday of the month at the Mildenhall Village Hall. For details please see here or call Micky Graham on 01672 514301.

The Menopause Matters Marlborough facebook group provides a forum for women in Marlborough and the surrounding areas to access information and support relating to menopause.

The White Horse Bookshop is offering workshops until the end of the year, click here for the full list.

News from your local councils

• The most recent full meeting of Marlborough Town Council for which minutes are available took place on 20 June and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the Port Hill traffic survey; anti-social behaviour; the Community and Youth Centre; the Mayor’s report; bus services; The Council’s Environment and Climate Protection policy; formal matters; committee reports; the Great West Way; and the Herbert Leaf Charitable trust. To see the dates and agendas for future Town Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for the latest on Marlborough’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Ramsbury & Axford Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 15 August and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: actions from the previous meeting; committee reports; planning matters; financial matters; play areas; the emergency committee; the green committee; maintenance and repairs across the parish; the public toilets; and the surgery. To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Bishopstone and Hinton Parva Parish Council, for which minutes are available took place on 8 August and you can download the minutes here. Items covered included: planning matters; broadband; footpaths and highways; and financial matters. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Wanborough Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 25 July and you can read the minutes here. To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the most recent agendas, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Great Bedwyn Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 14 July and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the refurbishment of The Wharf; councillor co-option; actions from the previous meeting; a village handyman; tree maintenance; financial matters; planning matters; grants to local organisations; the playground; and a new apple tree. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. There was also an extraordinary meeting on 28 February, the minutes of which you can read here, to vote on the contractor to install the memorial bench at Spaines.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St George Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 7 July and you can read the minutes here. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Aldbourne Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 6 July and you can read the minutes here. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for more information on Aldbourne’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 4 July and you can read the minutes here.

• The most recent meeting of Chiseldon Parish Council for which minutes are available, took place on 13 June and you can read the minutes hereTo see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• Click here for a list of current consultations being run by Wiltshire Council.

• Marlborough area council contacts

Parishes: Marlborough Town CouncilAldbourne Parish CouncilRamsbury & Axford Parish Council, Great Bedwyn Parish Council, Savernake Parish Council, Chiseldon Parish Council, Ogbourne St George Parish Council, Wanborough Parish CouncilBishopstone and Hinton Parva Parish Council  and Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council.

Wiltshire Council: click here to visit the website.

News from other areas

Penny Post area – please see the following separate sections: Hungerford area; Lambourn ValleyNewbury area; Thatcham area; Compton & DownlandsTheale area; Wantage area.

News and views from across the area and beyond: please see the most recent Weekly News with Brian column.

Thursday 18 August 2022

This week we visit a circus, wait for some four-way traffic lights, go for a walk and look at some classic cares: plus our usual round-up of other local news, local events and activities and news from your local councils.

This week’s news

• The circus is back in town – from Thursday 25 August to Monday 5 September Giffords Circus will be on Marlborough Common. This year the show will have a Mexican theme as the Director Cal McCrystal explains,  “Our 2022 show will evoke the sights and sounds of rural Mexico. I have directed in that splendid country several times it is a place that I greatly admire. Mexico’s incredible art, music, history, and people will be our inspiration. We are bringing Mexican performers over to join the troupe and with them we will create a show full of skill, humour, turmoil and excitement.”

• This week’s long-awaited downpour was substantial but not substantial enough to raise our extremely low river and reservoir levels caused by the driest July since 1885. As a result, Thames Water will be implementing a hosepipe ban from Wednesday 24 August. You can still use mains water to fill watering cans and buckets, and gardeners say this is a more efficient way to the water the garden so please make every drop count. There are exemptions for Blue Badge holders, or those on Thames Water’s Priority Register with restricted mobility, who find carrying a bucket or watering can difficult. And while the temporary ban does not cover businesses, Thames Water is asking businesses across its area to be mindful of the drought and to use water wisely, for example, by not washing commercial vehicles or turning off water features on their properties. See more details here.

• Essential work by Thames Water is the cause of the four-way traffic light system in Marlborough, by the Tesco supermarket. Any enquiries should be directed to 0800 316 9800.

• The issue of e-scooters has not yet been resolved. Although larger cities like Oxford and Bristol have official e-scooter rentals, the use of privately-owned e-scooters is currently illegal on public land. At the moment they should only be ridden on the owner’s private property as they are unlicensed, untaxed and uninsured. For more details see our article here. Local police are aware of the problem. If you have any issues please report them to the police online or call 999 in an emergency or 101 in a non-emergency situation. If an e-scooter rider is stopped by the police they risk having their scooter seized, penalty points on their licence and a fine.

• Quick reminder that a new book of Marlborough area walks is now available to help you enjoy the local landscape this summer. Pub Walks Near Marlborough features ancient rolling downs, ancient wonders such as Avebury, Silbury Hill and The Ridgeway, the bucolic magic of West Woods in bluebell season, the shadows of the early industrial age in the Kennet and Avon Canal and the disused railway lines that have now become peaceful byways. The book can be ordered online here from Hungerford Bookshop and is also available from White Horse Bookshop in Marlborough.

• Ramsbury Brewery will be hosting a classic car meet for the Marlborough Classics car club on Saturday 3 September. Enthusiasts are invited to come along with their veteran motor or motorcycle and enjoy this feast of all things vintage. It is free to attend and of course there will be a variety of ales on offer from the brewery and sustenance on offer from Ethel’s Pies.

• Quick reminder about Marlborough Town Council’s small grant scheme for local community or charity projects. Applications are considered by the Council at their Finance & Policy Committee Meetings which happen every few months. For more information about how to apply for the grant, visit the Town Council’s website.

• For ideas of what to do with the kids this summer, see our Guide to Summer Fun which includes geocaching in the Savernake Forest and free kids gardening sessions in Aldbourne.

• Some roadworks news here as the town council has warned that roadworks could be set until 2023 as superfast broadband is being introduced into the town. Works are set to be in place until April 2023 and the workers have been urged to not complete construction between rush hours. See more here in the Gazette and Herald.

Click here for the latest news from the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group about the continuing threat to direct rail services from Bedwyn, Hungerford and Kintbury to London. The struggle is far from over.

Community notices

Marlborough Community Fridge, located in the Community Room in the George/Figgins Lane Car Park (just behind the public loos) is open 9am to 11am on Thursdays and Fridays and 9am to 12pm on Saturdays. The fridge is free to access, there are no criteria that have to be met and it is a good way to use up surplus food from supermarkets and businesses that would otherwise go to waste. Please see their facebook page for more details.

• Anyone in the Marlborough area wanting to host or support Ukrainian refugees are invited to join this Facebook page: Ukrainians and their sponsors in Marlborough and surrounding areas. Or if you can volunteer to teach English please contact Nastia on nikasling@gmail.com.

Marlborough Fire Station is looking for new on-call recruits, ideally those who live or work within 5 minutes of the station. On-call firefighters are paid but they are not based at the station like full-time firefighters. They can have other jobs and commitments, only responding to emergencies when their alert goes off. Anyone over 18 with a good standard of physical fitness can apply. Please see Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue to find out more and fill out and application.

Wilton Windmill is open to the public on Sundays and Bank Holidays, until the end of the season in September. Visitors are encouraged to bring their own picnics, hot and cold drinks, ice creams and cakes will be available in the shepherd’s hut. See more on the Wilton Windmill website here.

• For the latest information changes to rail services between Bedwyn, Newbury and Paddington we recommend following the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group.

Local events and activities

For more information on events and activities across the Penny Post area, see the website calendar.

• Dates for the diary

Fri 26 to Mon 29 Aug Summer Music Festival, Froxfield.

Sun 28 & Mon 29 Aug Crofton Beam Engines in Steam

Thur 29 Sept to 2 Oct  Marlborough Literary Festival.

• Regular events

• The Transition Marlborough Hub Group meet on the second Thursday of the month at 7.30pm currently by zoom. To get involved please email enquiries@transitionmarlborough.org.

• Marlborough Park Run is a free, weekly, timed five km walk, jog or run at 9am every Saturday. Open to all ages and abilities. Organised entirely by volunteers. Click here to see their Facebook page.

The Stroke Association monthly drop-in support sessions at The Jubilee Centre for stroke survivors, their families and carers on Monday mornings. See here for the next date. For more details contact Katie Fielding on 07908 952740 or katie.fielding@stroke.org.uk

• Marlborough Floral Club meets 2pm on the first Thursday of the month at the Mildenhall Village Hall. For details please see here or call Micky Graham on 01672 514301.

The Menopause Matters Marlborough facebook group provides a forum for women in Marlborough and the surrounding areas to access information and support relating to menopause.

The White Horse Bookshop is offering workshops until the end of the year, click here for the full list.

News from your local councils

• The most recent full meeting of Marlborough Town Council for which minutes are available took place on 20 June and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the Port Hill traffic survey; anti-social behaviour; the Community and Youth Centre; the Mayor’s report; bus services; The Council’s Environment and Climate Protection policy; formal matters; committee reports; the Great West Way; and the Herbert Leaf Charitable trust. To see the dates and agendas for future Town Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for the latest on Marlborough’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Bishopstone and Hinton Parva Parish Council, for which minutes are available took place on 8 August and you can download the minutes here. Items covered included: planning matters; broadband; footpaths and highways; and financial matters. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Great Bedwyn Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 14 July and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the refurbishment of The Wharf; councillor co-option; actions from the previous meeting; a village handyman; tree maintenance; financial matters; planning matters; grants to local organisations; the playground; and a new apple tree. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. There was also an extraordinary meeting on 28 February, the minutes of which you can read here, to vote on the contractor to install the memorial bench at Spaines.

• The most recent meeting of Aldbourne Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 6 July and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: village repair and maintenance issues; EV charge points; the virtual paths; financial matters; local community groups; the neighbourhood development plan; the emergency plan; a report on the jubilee celebrations; and a report from ward member James Shepherd. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for more information on Aldbourne’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 4 July and you can read the minutes here.

• The most recent meeting of Ramsbury & Axford Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 20 June and you can read the minutes here.  To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Chiseldon Parish Council for which minutes are available, took place on 13 June and you can read the minutes hereTo see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Wanborough Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 27 June and you can read the minutes here. To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the most recent agendas, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St George Parish Council for which minutes are available,took place on 12 May and you can read the minutes here. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• Click here for a list of current consultations being run by Wiltshire Council.

• Marlborough area council contacts

Parishes: Marlborough Town CouncilAldbourne Parish CouncilRamsbury & Axford Parish Council, Great Bedwyn Parish Council, Savernake Parish Council, Chiseldon Parish Council, Ogbourne St George Parish Council, Wanborough Parish CouncilBishopstone and Hinton Parva Parish Council  and Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council.

Wiltshire Council: click here to visit the website.

News from other areas

Penny Post area – please see the following separate sections: Hungerford area; Lambourn ValleyNewbury area; Thatcham area; Compton & DownlandsTheale area; Wantage area.

News and views from across the area and beyond: please see the most recent Weekly News with Brian column.

Thursday 18 August 2022

This week we visit a circus, wait for some four-way traffic lights, go for a walk and look at some classic cares: plus our usual round-up of other local news, local events and activities and news from your local councils.

This week’s news

• The circus is back in town – from Thursday 25 August to Monday 5 September Giffords Circus will be on Marlborough Common. This year the show will have a Mexican theme as the Director Cal McCrystal explains,  “Our 2022 show will evoke the sights and sounds of rural Mexico. I have directed in that splendid country several times it is a place that I greatly admire. Mexico’s incredible art, music, history, and people will be our inspiration. We are bringing Mexican performers over to join the troupe and with them we will create a show full of skill, humour, turmoil and excitement.”

• This week’s long-awaited downpour was substantial but not substantial enough to raise our extremely low river and reservoir levels caused by the driest July since 1885. As a result, Thames Water will be implementing a hosepipe ban from Wednesday 24 August. You can still use mains water to fill watering cans and buckets, and gardeners say this is a more efficient way to the water the garden so please make every drop count. There are exemptions for Blue Badge holders, or those on Thames Water’s Priority Register with restricted mobility, who find carrying a bucket or watering can difficult. And while the temporary ban does not cover businesses, Thames Water is asking businesses across its area to be mindful of the drought and to use water wisely, for example, by not washing commercial vehicles or turning off water features on their properties. See more details here.

• Essential work by Thames Water is the cause of the four-way traffic light system in Marlborough, by the Tesco supermarket. Any enquiries should be directed to 0800 316 9800.

• The issue of e-scooters has not yet been resolved. Although larger cities like Oxford and Bristol have official e-scooter rentals, the use of privately-owned e-scooters is currently illegal on public land. At the moment they should only be ridden on the owner’s private property as they are unlicensed, untaxed and uninsured. For more details see our article here. Local police are aware of the problem. If you have any issues please report them to the police online or call 999 in an emergency or 101 in a non-emergency situation. If an e-scooter rider is stopped by the police they risk having their scooter seized, penalty points on their licence and a fine.

• Quick reminder that a new book of Marlborough area walks is now available to help you enjoy the local landscape this summer. Pub Walks Near Marlborough features ancient rolling downs, ancient wonders such as Avebury, Silbury Hill and The Ridgeway, the bucolic magic of West Woods in bluebell season, the shadows of the early industrial age in the Kennet and Avon Canal and the disused railway lines that have now become peaceful byways. The book can be ordered online here from Hungerford Bookshop and is also available from White Horse Bookshop in Marlborough.

• Ramsbury Brewery will be hosting a classic car meet for the Marlborough Classics car club on Saturday 3 September. Enthusiasts are invited to come along with their veteran motor or motorcycle and enjoy this feast of all things vintage. It is free to attend and of course there will be a variety of ales on offer from the brewery and sustenance on offer from Ethel’s Pies.

• Quick reminder about Marlborough Town Council’s small grant scheme for local community or charity projects. Applications are considered by the Council at their Finance & Policy Committee Meetings which happen every few months. For more information about how to apply for the grant, visit the Town Council’s website.

• For ideas of what to do with the kids this summer, see our Guide to Summer Fun which includes geocaching in the Savernake Forest and free kids gardening sessions in Aldbourne.

• Some roadworks news here as the town council has warned that roadworks could be set until 2023 as superfast broadband is being introduced into the town. Works are set to be in place until April 2023 and the workers have been urged to not complete construction between rush hours. See more here in the Gazette and Herald.

Click here for the latest news from the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group about the continuing threat to direct rail services from Bedwyn, Hungerford and Kintbury to London. The struggle is far from over.

Community notices

Marlborough Community Fridge, located in the Community Room in the George/Figgins Lane Car Park (just behind the public loos) is open 9am to 11am on Thursdays and Fridays and 9am to 12pm on Saturdays. The fridge is free to access, there are no criteria that have to be met and it is a good way to use up surplus food from supermarkets and businesses that would otherwise go to waste. Please see their facebook page for more details.

• Anyone in the Marlborough area wanting to host or support Ukrainian refugees are invited to join this Facebook page: Ukrainians and their sponsors in Marlborough and surrounding areas. Or if you can volunteer to teach English please contact Nastia on nikasling@gmail.com.

Marlborough Fire Station is looking for new on-call recruits, ideally those who live or work within 5 minutes of the station. On-call firefighters are paid but they are not based at the station like full-time firefighters. They can have other jobs and commitments, only responding to emergencies when their alert goes off. Anyone over 18 with a good standard of physical fitness can apply. Please see Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue to find out more and fill out and application.

Wilton Windmill is open to the public on Sundays and Bank Holidays, until the end of the season in September. Visitors are encouraged to bring their own picnics, hot and cold drinks, ice creams and cakes will be available in the shepherd’s hut. See more on the Wilton Windmill website here.

• For the latest information changes to rail services between Bedwyn, Newbury and Paddington we recommend following the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group.

Local events and activities

For more information on events and activities across the Penny Post area, see the website calendar.

• Dates for the diary

Fri 26 to Mon 29 Aug Summer Music Festival, Froxfield.

Sun 28 & Mon 29 Aug Crofton Beam Engines in Steam

Thur 29 Sept to 2 Oct  Marlborough Literary Festival.

• Regular events

• The Transition Marlborough Hub Group meet on the second Thursday of the month at 7.30pm currently by zoom. To get involved please email enquiries@transitionmarlborough.org.

• Marlborough Park Run is a free, weekly, timed five km walk, jog or run at 9am every Saturday. Open to all ages and abilities. Organised entirely by volunteers. Click here to see their Facebook page.

The Stroke Association monthly drop-in support sessions at The Jubilee Centre for stroke survivors, their families and carers on Monday mornings. See here for the next date. For more details contact Katie Fielding on 07908 952740 or katie.fielding@stroke.org.uk

• Marlborough Floral Club meets 2pm on the first Thursday of the month at the Mildenhall Village Hall. For details please see here or call Micky Graham on 01672 514301.

The Menopause Matters Marlborough facebook group provides a forum for women in Marlborough and the surrounding areas to access information and support relating to menopause.

The White Horse Bookshop is offering workshops until the end of the year, click here for the full list.

News from your local councils

• The most recent full meeting of Marlborough Town Council for which minutes are available took place on 20 June and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the Port Hill traffic survey; anti-social behaviour; the Community and Youth Centre; the Mayor’s report; bus services; The Council’s Environment and Climate Protection policy; formal matters; committee reports; the Great West Way; and the Herbert Leaf Charitable trust. To see the dates and agendas for future Town Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for the latest on Marlborough’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Bishopstone and Hinton Parva Parish Council, for which minutes are available took place on 8 August and you can download the minutes here. Items covered included: planning matters; broadband; footpaths and highways; and financial matters. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Great Bedwyn Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 14 July and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the refurbishment of The Wharf; councillor co-option; actions from the previous meeting; a village handyman; tree maintenance; financial matters; planning matters; grants to local organisations; the playground; and a new apple tree. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. There was also an extraordinary meeting on 28 February, the minutes of which you can read here, to vote on the contractor to install the memorial bench at Spaines.

• The most recent meeting of Aldbourne Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 6 July and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: village repair and maintenance issues; EV charge points; the virtual paths; financial matters; local community groups; the neighbourhood development plan; the emergency plan; a report on the jubilee celebrations; and a report from ward member James Shepherd. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for more information on Aldbourne’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 4 July and you can read the minutes here.

• The most recent meeting of Ramsbury & Axford Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 20 June and you can read the minutes here.  To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Chiseldon Parish Council for which minutes are available, took place on 13 June and you can read the minutes hereTo see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Wanborough Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 27 June and you can read the minutes here. To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the most recent agendas, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St George Parish Council for which minutes are available,took place on 12 May and you can read the minutes here. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• Click here for a list of current consultations being run by Wiltshire Council.

• Marlborough area council contacts

Parishes: Marlborough Town CouncilAldbourne Parish CouncilRamsbury & Axford Parish Council, Great Bedwyn Parish Council, Savernake Parish Council, Chiseldon Parish Council, Ogbourne St George Parish Council, Wanborough Parish CouncilBishopstone and Hinton Parva Parish Council  and Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council.

Wiltshire Council: click here to visit the website.

News from other areas

Penny Post area – please see the following separate sections: Hungerford area; Lambourn ValleyNewbury area; Thatcham area; Compton & DownlandsTheale area; Wantage area.

News and views from across the area and beyond: please see the most recent Weekly News with Brian column.

Thursday 11 August 2022

This week we look at grants, cars, windmills and meteors: plus our usual round-up of other local news, local events and activities and news from your local councils.

This week’s news

• Thames Water has given notice of essential work that will be carried out from August 7,  for a period of four weeks, involving a four-way traffic light system in Marlborough, by the Tesco supermarket. Any enquiries should be directed to 0800 316 9800.

• Quick reminder that a new book of Marlborough area walks is now available to help you enjoy the local landscape this summer. Pub Walks Near Marlborough features ancient rolling downs, ancient wonders such as Avebury, Silbury Hill and The Ridgeway, the bucolic magic of West Woods in bluebell season, the shadows of the early industrial age in the Kennet and Avon Canal and the disused railway lines that have now become peaceful byways. The book can be ordered online here from Hungerford Bookshop and is also available from White Horse Bookshop in Marlborough.

• Attention all stargazers: the peak of the Perseids meteor shower over the UK will be this Friday night, into the small hours of Saturday morning. With the warm weather we’ve been having, there’s a good chance of great viewing conditions, unobstructed by clouds or rain. However it will be competing with the light of a full moon, which may affect visibility. The best place to view the showers are wide open spaces, away from the light pollution of towns and urban areas. Keep a look out after dark on Friday 12 August, for a chance to see some falling stars. Apparently the meteors will appear to radiate from a point in the sky in the north. They will radiate across the whole sky from this point. So look anywhere except towards the full moon.

• Ramsbury Brewery will be hosting a classic car meet for the Marlborough Classics car club on Saturday 3 September. Enthusiasts are invited to come along with their veteran motor or motorcycle and enjoy this feast of all things vintage. It is free to attend and of course there will be a variety of ales on offer from the brewery and sustenance on offer from Ethel’s Pies.

• Quick reminder about Marlborough Town Council’s small grant scheme for local community or charity projects. Applications are considered by the Council at their Finance & Policy Committee Meetings which happen every few months. For more information about how to apply for the grant, visit the Town Council’s website.

• For ideas of what to do with the kids this summer, see our Guide to Summer Fun which includes geocaching in the Savernake Forest and free kids gardening sessions in Aldbourne.

• Some roadworks news here as the town council has warned that roadworks could be set until 2023 as superfast broadband is being introduced into the town. Works are set to be in place until April 2023 and the workers have been urged to not complete construction between rush hours. See more here in the Gazette and Herald.

Click here for the latest news from the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group about the continuing threat to direct rail services from Bedwyn, Hungerford and Kintbury to London. The struggle is far from over.

Community notices

Marlborough Community Fridge, located in the Community Room in the George/Figgins Lane Car Park (just behind the public loos) is open 9am to 11am on Thursdays and Fridays and 9am to 12pm on Saturdays. The fridge is free to access, there are no criteria that have to be met and it is a good way to use up surplus food from supermarkets and businesses that would otherwise go to waste. Please see their facebook page for more details.

• Anyone in the Marlborough area wanting to host or support Ukrainian refugees are invited to join this Facebook page: Ukrainians and their sponsors in Marlborough and surrounding areas. Or if you can volunteer to teach English please contact Nastia on nikasling@gmail.com.

Marlborough Fire Station is looking for new on-call recruits, ideally those who live or work within 5 minutes of the station. On-call firefighters are paid but they are not based at the station like full-time firefighters. They can have other jobs and commitments, only responding to emergencies when their alert goes off. Anyone over 18 with a good standard of physical fitness can apply. Please see Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue to find out more and fill out and application.

Wilton Windmill is open to the public on Sundays and Bank Holidays, until the end of the season in September. Visitors are encouraged to bring their own picnics, hot and cold drinks, ice creams and cakes will be available in the shepherd’s hut. See more on the Wilton Windmill website here.

• For the latest information changes to rail services between Bedwyn, Newbury and Paddington we recommend following the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group.

Local events and activities

For more information on events and activities across the Penny Post area, see the website calendar.

• Dates for the diary

Sat 13 Aug Gig on the Green, Marlborough.

Thu 18 Aug Sustainable Marlborough Social, Marlborough.

Fri 26 to Mon 29 Aug Summer Music Festival, Froxfield.

Sun 28 & Mon 29 Aug Crofton Beam Engines in Steam

Thur 29 Sept to 2 Oct  Marlborough Literary Festival.

• Regular events

• The Transition Marlborough Hub Group meet on the second Thursday of the month at 7.30pm currently by zoom. To get involved please email enquiries@transitionmarlborough.org.

• Marlborough Park Run is a free, weekly, timed five km walk, jog or run at 9am every Saturday. Open to all ages and abilities. Organised entirely by volunteers. Click here to see their Facebook page.

The Stroke Association monthly drop-in support sessions at The Jubilee Centre for stroke survivors, their families and carers on Monday mornings. See here for the next date. For more details contact Katie Fielding on 07908 952740 or katie.fielding@stroke.org.uk

• Marlborough Floral Club meets 2pm on the first Thursday of the month at the Mildenhall Village Hall. For details please see here or call Micky Graham on 01672 514301.

The Menopause Matters Marlborough facebook group provides a forum for women in Marlborough and the surrounding areas to access information and support relating to menopause.

The White Horse Bookshop is offering workshops until the end of the year, click here for the full list.

News from your local councils

• The most recent full meeting of Marlborough Town Council for which minutes are available took place on 20 June and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the Port Hill traffic survey; anti-social behaviour; the Community and Youth Centre; the Mayor’s report; bus services; The Council’s Environment and Climate Protection policy; formal matters; committee reports; the Great West Way; and the Herbert Leaf Charitable trust. To see the dates and agendas for future Town Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for the latest on Marlborough’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Aldbourne Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 6 July and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: village repair and maintenance issues; EV charge points; the virtual paths; financial matters; local community groups; the neighbourhood development plan; the emergency plan; a report on the jubilee celebrations; and a report from ward member James Shepherd. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for more information on Aldbourne’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Bishopstone and Hinton Parva Parish Council, for which minutes are available took place on 4 July and you can download the minutes here. Items covered included: planning matters; speeding; broadband; footpaths and highways; and repairs and maintenance work around the parish. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 4 July and you can read the minutes here.

• The most recent meeting of Ramsbury & Axford Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 20 June and you can read the minutes here.  To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Chiseldon Parish Council for which minutes are available, took place on 13 June and you can read the minutes hereTo see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Wanborough Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 27 June and you can read the minutes here. To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the most recent agendas, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St George Parish Council for which minutes are available,took place on 12 May and you can read the minutes here. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Great Bedwyn Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 12 May and you can read the minutes here. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. There was also an extraordinary meeting on 28 February, the minutes of which you can read here, to vote on the contractor to install the memorial bench at Spaines.

• Click here for a list of current consultations being run by Wiltshire Council.

• Marlborough area council contacts

Parishes: Marlborough Town CouncilAldbourne Parish CouncilRamsbury & Axford Parish Council, Great Bedwyn Parish Council, Savernake Parish Council, Chiseldon Parish Council, Ogbourne St George Parish Council, Wanborough Parish CouncilBishopstone and Hinton Parva Parish Council  and Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council.

Wiltshire Council: click here to visit the website.

News from other areas

Penny Post area – please see the following separate sections: Hungerford area; Lambourn ValleyNewbury area; Thatcham area; Compton & DownlandsTheale area; Wantage area.

News and views from across the area and beyond: please see the most recent Weekly News with Brian column.

 

Thursday 4 August 2022

This week we look at grants, walks, football and music: plus our usual round-up of other local news, local events and activities and news from your local councils.

This week’s news

Marlborough’s NFU Mutual Agents and their staff recently nominated local charity Wiltshire Community Foundation, to receive a donation of £3,189.50 from NFU Mutual’ s national £1.92million ‘Agency Giving Fund’. This donation has enabled Wiltshire Community Foundation to support local residents in need and Ukraine refugees who have just arrived in Wiltshire. See more here on marlborough.news

• Marlborough Town Football Club will be hosting their very own Summer Music Festival this Saturday 6 August. Offering food, a range of music and a bar, entry is free with gates opening at noon, although music will not start until 2pm.

• At the recent annual end of season celebrations, Marlborough Youth Football Club was delighted to announce that the highest club honour was awarded to Poppy Pearson (U7 Eagles) by the public/parents vote and Oliver Wyatt (U8 Eagles) by the club vote. See more here on marlborough.news.

• A new book of Marlborough area walks is now available to help you enjoy the local landscape this summer. Pub Walks Near Marlborough by Alex Milne-White features ancient rolling downs, ancient wonders such as Avebury, Silbury Hill and The Ridgeway, the bucolic magic of West Woods in bluebell season, the shadows of the early industrial age in the Kennet and Avon Canal and the disused railway lines that have now become peaceful byways. The book can be ordered online here from Hungerford Bookshop and is also available from White Horse Bookshop in Marlborough

• An ongoing spat between Marlborough Town Council and Avebury Parish Council, regarding reduction of a lay-by in Avebury to accommodate only three cars is being driven by Conservative Wiltshire Councillor Jane Davies. Avebury does not feel it is answerable to Marlborough for its parking decisions, but given its World Heritage and National Trust status, there is a broader interest in their actions. Watch this space for any developments and contact Jane Davies for any concerns you might have.

• Still time to nominate your Marlborough Community Heroes to be honoured at a community dinner at Rick Stein’s restaurant in the High Street. Comment on their facebook page here to shout out for your hero.

• Quick reminder about Marlborough Town Council’s small grant scheme for local community or charity projects. Applications are considered by the Council at their Finance & Policy Committee Meetings which happen every few months. For more information about how to apply for the grant, visit the Town Council’s website.

• For ideas of what to do with the kids this summer, see our Guide to Summer Fun which includes geocaching in the Savernake Forest and free kids gardening sessions in Aldbourne.

• Some roadworks news here as the town council has warned that roadworks could be set until 2023 as superfast broadband is being introduced into the town. Works are set to be in place until April 2023 and the workers have been urged to not complete construction between rush hours. See more here in the Gazette and Herald.

• Tickets for Marlborough LitFest this autumn are available from The White Horse Bookshop or from the festival’s website here.

English teaching volunteers wanted to help Ukrainian refugees adjust to life in the UK. If you would be comfortable teaching English online, as a volunteer, Nastia would love to hear from you. She is looking for people who can teach at beginner, intermediate and advanced levels. Please contact her at: nikasling@gmail.com.

Click here for the latest news from the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group about the continuing threat to direct rail services from Bedwyn, Hungerford and Kintbury to London. The struggle is far from over.

Marlborough Fire Station is looking for new on-call recruits, ideally those who live or work within 5 minutes of the station. On-call firefighters are paid but they are not based at the station like full-time firefighters. They can have other jobs and commitments, only responding to emergencies when their alert goes off. Anyone over 18 with a good standard of physical fitness can apply. Please see Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue to find out more and fill out and application.

Community notices

Marlborough Community Fridge, located in the Community Room in the George/Figgins Lane Car Park (just behind the public loos) is open 9am to 11am on Thursdays and Fridays and 9am to 12pm on Saturdays. The fridge is free to access, there are no criteria that have to be met and it is a good way to use up surplus food from supermarkets and businesses that would otherwise go to waste. Please see their facebook page for more details.

• Anyone in the Marlborough area wanting to host or support Ukrainian refugees are invited to join this Facebook page: Ukrainians and their sponsors in Marlborough and surrounding areas.

Wilton Windmill is open to the public on Sundays and Bank Holidays, until the end of the season in September. Visitors are encouraged to bring their own picnics, hot and cold drinks, ice creams and cakes will be available in the shepherd’s hut. See more on the Wilton Windmill website here.

• For the latest information changes to rail services between Bedwyn, Newbury and Paddington we recommend following the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group.

Local events and activities

For more information on events and activities across the Penny Post area, see the website calendar.

• Dates for the diary

Sat 13 Aug Gig on the Green, Marlborough.

Thu 18 Aug Sustainable Marlborough Social, Marlborough.

Sat 26 to Mon 29 Aug Summer Music Festival, Froxfield.

• Regular events

• The Transition Marlborough Hub Group meet on the second Thursday of the month at 7.30pm currently by zoom. To get involved please email enquiries@transitionmarlborough.org.

• Marlborough Park Run is a free, weekly, timed five km walk, jog or run at 9am every Saturday. Open to all ages and abilities. Organised entirely by volunteers. Click here to see their Facebook page.

The Stroke Association monthly drop-in support sessions at The Jubilee Centre for stroke survivors, their families and carers on Monday mornings. See here for the next date. For more details contact Katie Fielding on 07908 952740 or katie.fielding@stroke.org.uk

• Marlborough Floral Club meets 2pm on the first Thursday of the month at the Mildenhall Village Hall. For details please see here or call Micky Graham on 01672 514301.

The Menopause Matters Marlborough facebook group provides a forum for women in Marlborough and the surrounding areas to access information and support relating to menopause.

The White Horse Bookshop is offering workshops until the end of the year, click here for the full list.

News from your local councils

• The most recent full meeting of Marlborough Town Council for which minutes are available took place on 20 June and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the Port Hill traffic survey; anti-social behaviour; the Community and Youth Centre; the Mayor’s report; bus services; The Council’s Environment and Climate Protection policy; formal matters; committee reports; the Great West Way; and the Herbert Leaf Charitable trust. To see the dates and agendas for future Town Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for the latest on Marlborough’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Bishopstone and Hinton Parva Parish Council, for which minutes are available took place on 4 July and you can download the minutes here. Items covered included: planning matters; speeding; broadband; footpaths and highways; and repairs and maintenance work around the parish. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 4 July and you can read the minutes here.

• The most recent meeting of Ramsbury & Axford Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 20 June and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the co-option of a new councillor; correspondence on a range of matters ranging from bollards to bunting and from white lines to rights of way; committee reports; planning matters; financial matters; footpaths; play areas; The Red Lion in Axford; the PC website; a review of the jubilee events; village maintenance; Ukrainian refugees; the allotments; the Parish Stewards, the school; and the Memorial Hall. To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Chiseldon Parish Council for which minutes are available, took place on 13 June and you can read the minutes hereTo see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Aldbourne Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 1 June and you can read the minutes here. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for more information on Aldbourne’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Wanborough Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 23 May and you can read the minutes here. To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the most recent agendas, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St George Parish Council for which minutes are available,took place on 12 May and you can read the minutes here. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Great Bedwyn Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 12 May and you can read the minutes here. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. There was also an extraordinary meeting on 28 February, the minutes of which you can read here, to vote on the contractor to install the memorial bench at Spaines.

• Click here for a list of current consultations being run by Wiltshire Council.

• Marlborough area council contacts

Parishes: Marlborough Town CouncilAldbourne Parish CouncilRamsbury & Axford Parish Council, Great Bedwyn Parish Council, Savernake Parish Council, Chiseldon Parish Council, Ogbourne St George Parish Council, Wanborough Parish CouncilBishopstone and Hinton Parva Parish Council  and Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council.

Wiltshire Council: click here to visit the website.

News from other areas

Penny Post area – please see the following separate sections: Hungerford area; Lambourn ValleyNewbury area; Thatcham area; Compton & DownlandsTheale area; Wantage area.

News and views from across the area and beyond: please see the most recent Weekly News with Brian column.

Thursday 28 July 2022

This week we look at community heroes, small grants, horses, kids and festivals and offer some further thoughts about the final hurdle for the neighbourhood development plan: plus our usual round-up of other local news, local events and activities and news from your local councils.

This week’s news

Marlborough’s Community Heroes are going to be honoured at a Community Dinner hosted by Rick Stein’s restaurant in the High Street. Nominations are requested for any individual you feel has contributed to the wellbeing of their community and has gone above and beyond in their actions. Whether they help out with a sport club, youth club or an environmental or mental health endeavour, contact Rick Stein through their facebook page and your nominee could be looking forward to a free three course meal. Click here to nominate your hero.

• Classical music lovers will enjoy the Bedwyn Summer Musical Concert featuring pianist Jonathan Ferrucci this Friday 29 July at St Mary’s Church in Great Bedwyn.

• The popular weekly 5km Park Run on Marlborough Common is asking for more volunteers this Saturday 30 July as some of their regulars are away. More details on their facebook page here.

Marlborough Town Council will be holding a Finance & Policy meeting at on Monday 1 August at 7pm in The Town Hall with an open invitation to members of the public. For full agenda click here.

• Quick reminder about Marlborough Town Council’s small grant scheme for local community or charity projects. Applications are considered by the Council at their Finance & Policy Committee Meetings which happen every few months. For more information about how to apply for the grant, visit the Town Council’s website.

• Marlborough Town Football Club will be hosting their very own Summer Music Festival on Saturday 6 August. Offering food, a range of music and a bar, entry is free with gates opening at noon, although music will not start until 2pm.

Greenwood racehorse re-homing charity at Rainscombe Hill Farm still has a few places left on their 1st4sport accredited Get Going programme. If you are aged 16-24 and fancy a career with horses, this programme will not only teach you the basics of equine healthcare but will allow you to ride an Equicizer, see a farrier at work and visit a top racing yard. The course runs from 1 to 5 August and more information is available here.

• There are pitches available at Aldbourne Car Boot Sale on Sunday 31 July 10-12pm at the Football Field.  Each seller is asked to arrive at 9.30am and will be charged a fee of £5 which will be donated to Aldbourne Youth Club. See more details here.

• For ideas of what to do with the kids this summer, see our Guide to Summer Fun which includes geocaching in the Savernake Forest and free kids gardening sessions in Aldbourne.

• Some roadworks news here as the town council has warned that roadworks could be set until 2023 as superfast broadband is being introduced into the town. Works are set to be in place until April 2023 and the workers have been urged to not complete construction between rush hours. See more here in the Gazette and Herald.

• Tickets for Marlborough LitFest this autumn are now available to buy from The White Horse Bookshop or from the festival’s website here.

English teaching volunteers wanted to help Ukrainian refugees adjust to life in the UK. If you would be comfortable teaching English online, as a volunteer, Nastia would love to hear from you. She is looking for people who can teach at beginner, intermediate and advanced levels. Please contact her at: nikasling@gmail.com.

Click here for the latest news from the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group about the continuing threat to direct rail services from Bedwyn, Hungerford and Kintbury to London. The struggle is far from over.

Marlborough Fire Station is looking for new on-call recruits, ideally those who live or work within 5 minutes of the station. On-call firefighters are paid but they are not based at the station like full-time firefighters. They can have other jobs and commitments, only responding to emergencies when their alert goes off. Anyone over 18 with a good standard of physical fitness can apply. Please see Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue to find out more and fill out and application.

• Some people have been dismayed to see that Christchurch and The Wesley Hall in New Road, recently registered as an asset of community value (ACV) have been put on the put on the market with an asking price of £450,000. When Marlborough Town Council registered the building as an ACV nearly six weeks ago, there was a deadline set of 27 July for any group or bidder to register their interest with Wiltshire Council, which would then create a six month moratorium on any sale to give time for interested parties to raise funding and put together their bid. It seems that no group did register interest, so the property is now for sale on the open market. See more details here on marlborough.news.

Referendum time

As mentioned last week, this article in Marlborough News explains that the Marlborough neighbourhood development plan (NDP) is about to reach its final hurdle with a referendum on Thursday 11 August when all residents in the area covered by the NDP will be able to vote to approve it (or not).

Most NDPs pass the referendum stage: as of March 2019 there were only three that failed compared to the 800-odd which had succeeded. However, as events in 2016 showed, referendums sometime produce different results from that which were predicted so, whichever way you feel about it, cast your vote.

It was pointed out at a recent open meeting that the middle of the summer holidays is perhaps not the ideal time for such things. However, the above-mentioned post has information about his you can apply for a postal vote (which you need to have done by 27 July). You can also see more about the NDP on the Town Council’s website here. In addition, this page specifically deals with the stutory information supplied by Wiltshire Council, which will be running the referendum.

Community notices

Marlborough Community Fridge, located in the Community Room in the George/Figgins Lane Car Park (just behind the public loos) is open 9am to 11am on Thursdays and Fridays and 9am to 12pm on Saturdays. The fridge is free to access, there are no criteria that have to be met and it is a good way to use up surplus food from supermarkets and businesses that would otherwise go to waste. Please see their facebook page for more details.

• Anyone in the Marlborough area wanting to host or support Ukrainian refugees are invited to join this Facebook page: Ukrainians and their sponsors in Marlborough and surrounding areas.

Wilton Windmill is open to the public on Sundays and Bank Holidays, until the end of the season in September. Visitors are encouraged to bring their own picnics, hot and cold drinks, ice creams and cakes will be available in the shepherd’s hut. See more on the Wilton Windmill website here.

• For the latest information changes to rail services between Bedwyn, Newbury and Paddington we recommend following the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group.

Local events and activities

For more information on events and activities across the Penny Post area, see the website calendar.

• Dates for the diary

Sat 13 Aug Gig on the Green, Marlborough.

Thu 18 Aug Sustainable Marlborough Social, Marlborough.

Sat 26 to Mon 29 Aug Summer Music Festival, Froxfield.

• Regular events

• The Transition Marlborough Hub Group meet on the second Thursday of the month at 7.30pm currently by zoom. To get involved please email enquiries@transitionmarlborough.org.

• Marlborough Park Run is a free, weekly, timed five km walk, jog or run at 9am every Saturday. Open to all ages and abilities. Organised entirely by volunteers. Click here to see their Facebook page.

The Stroke Association monthly drop-in support sessions at The Jubilee Centre for stroke survivors, their families and carers on Monday mornings. See here for the next date. For more details contact Katie Fielding on 07908 952740 or katie.fielding@stroke.org.uk

• Marlborough Floral Club meets 2pm on the first Thursday of the month at the Mildenhall Village Hall. For details please see here or call Micky Graham on 01672 514301.

The Menopause Matters Marlborough facebook group provides a forum for women in Marlborough and the surrounding areas to access information and support relating to menopause.

The White Horse Bookshop is offering workshops until the end of the year, click here for the full list.

News from your local councils

• The most recent full meeting of Marlborough Town Council for which minutes are available took place on 20 June and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the Port Hill traffic survey; anti-social behaviour; the Community and Youth Centre; the Mayor’s report; bus services; The Council’s Environment and Climate Protection policy; formal matters; committee reports; the Great West Way; and the Herbert Leaf Charitable trust. To see the dates and agendas for future Town Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for the latest on Marlborough’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Bishopstone and Hinton Parva Parish Council, for which minutes are available took place on 4 July and you can download the minutes here. Items covered included: planning matters; speeding; broadband; footpaths and highways; and repairs and maintenance work around the parish. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 4 July and you can read the minutes here.

• The most recent meeting of Ramsbury & Axford Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 20 June and you can read the minutes here. To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Chiseldon Parish Council for which minutes are available, took place on 13 June and you can read the minutes hereTo see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Aldbourne Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 1 June and you can read the minutes here. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for more information on Aldbourne’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Wanborough Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 23 May and you can read the minutes here. To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the most recent agendas, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St George Parish Council for which minutes are available,took place on 12 May and you can read the minutes here. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Great Bedwyn Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 12 May and you can read the minutes here. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. There was also an extraordinary meeting on 28 February, the minutes of which you can read here, to vote on the contractor to install the memorial bench at Spaines.

• Click here for a list of current consultations being run by Wiltshire Council.

• Marlborough area council contacts

Parishes: Marlborough Town CouncilAldbourne Parish CouncilRamsbury & Axford Parish Council, Great Bedwyn Parish Council, Savernake Parish Council, Chiseldon Parish Council, Ogbourne St George Parish Council, Wanborough Parish CouncilBishopstone and Hinton Parva Parish Council  and Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council.

Wiltshire Council: click here to visit the website.

News from other areas

Penny Post area – please see the following separate sections: Hungerford area; Lambourn ValleyNewbury area; Thatcham area; Compton & DownlandsTheale area; Wantage area.

News and views from across the area and beyond: please see the most recent Weekly News with Brian column.

Thursday 21 July 2022

This week we look at a sustainable social, live music, first aid and the final hurdle for the neighbourhood development plan: plus our usual round-up of other local news, local events and activities and news from your local councils.

This week’s news

• If you missed Sustainable Marlborough‘s first Sustainable Social at Feather Moss Flowers in Hughenden Yard, you can visit the website here to see what they discussed including how to green your money, podcasts, barriers to action and why talking about climate is so powerful. The socials are friendly, not preachy, and the next one is on Thursday 18 August.

• If you enjoy live music please support local bands Vooz and Navajo Dogs playing this Friday 22 July at Marlborough Football Club’s first live gig for a quite while. See here for more details

• There is also a Music Quiz at Ogbourne Downs Golf Club this Friday 22 July. Enjoy an all-you-can-eat curry buffet before testing your musical knowledge with friends and family and your host for the evening, Kevin Akers from 8pm.

If you are looking for respite care for a loved one with dementia, Brendoncare in Froxfield is offering Three weeks for the price of two dementia respite care when confirmed and paid by 29 July.

• Louise Worsley is running a Paediatric First Aid Course at St. Mary’s Church, Marlborough this Saturday 23 July. This 12-hour Ofsted approved Level 3 option course is suitable for any childcare professionals e.g. nannies, nursery workers, children’s activity providers and early years teachers. You can choose a blended option, where the first 6 hours are completed online before spending 6 hours in the classroom. See here for how to book.

• For ideas of what to do with the kids this summer, see our Guide to Summer Fun which includes geocaching in the Savernake Forest and free kids gardening sessions in Aldbourne.

• Classical music lovers will enjoy the Bedwyn Summer Musical Concert featuring pianist Jonathan Ferrucci on Friday 29 July at St Mary’s Church in Great Bedwyn.

Marlborough Tennis Club has a new sponsor, Brewin Dolphin, who will become sponsors with immediate effect.

• Some roadworks news here as the town council has warned that roadworks could be set until 2023 as superfast broadband is being introduced into the town. Works are set to be in place until April 2023 and the workers have been urged to not complete construction between rush hours. See more here in the Gazette and Herald.

• On a lighter note, Marlborough Town Councillors have voted on where to plant 70 trees in conjunction with the Queen’s Green Canopy project. The decision will be revealed in the next minutes of the Amenities and Open Spaces committee meeting. For more information, you can visit here.

• Tickets for Marlborough LitFest this autumn are now available to buy from The White Horse Bookshop or from the festival’s website here.

English teaching volunteers wanted to help Ukrainian refugees adjust to life in the UK. If you would be comfortable teaching English online, as a volunteer, Nastia would love to hear from you. She is looking for people who can teach at beginner, intermediate and advanced levels. Please contact her at: nikasling@gmail.com.

• Interested in a career in wildlife conservation? Wiltshire Wildlife Trust currently has several vacancies open, such as a Education Support Worker role, as well as several other positions, including various volunteering opportunities. If you would be interested in working with them or learning more about their work, visit their website.

Click here for the latest news from the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group about the continuing threat to direct rail services from Bedwyn, Hungerford and Kintbury to London. The struggle is far from over.

• Did you know Marlborough Town Council runs a small grant scheme for local projects? Community or charity projects can fill out an application, which will be considered by the Council at their Finance & Policy Committee Meetings which happen every few months. For more information about how to apply for the grant, visit the Town Council’s website.

Marlborough Fire Station is looking for new on-call recruits, ideally those who live or work within 5 minutes of the station. On-call firefighters are paid but they are not based at the station like full-time firefighters. They can have other jobs and commitments, only responding to emergencies when their alert goes off. Anyone over 18 with a good standard of physical fitness can apply. Please see Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue to find out more and fill out and application.

• A reminder that Marlborough Town Council is appealing to dog owners to keep dogs on leads in Coopers Meadow to help protect the local wildlife. The nesting season runs between 1 Mar and 31 July and there are currently lots of swan families with young babies. Please help protect our local wildlife, by making sure your dog is leashed until the nesting season is over.

Referendum time

This article in Marlborough News explains that the Marlborough neighbourhood development plan (NDP) is about to reach its final hurdle – this will be referendum on Thursday 11 August when all residents in the area covered by the NDP will be able to vote to approve it (or not).

In a nutshell, NDPs give local communities the opportunity to work with the planning authority – WBC in this case – to write the part of the local plan which affects them. It cannot prevent development but it can influence where and of what kind it is and also specify a number of matters which need to be borne in mind when considering any planning application in the parish. The article explains that a town councillor involved in the process has listed “nineteen separate areas of policy that the NDP covers, all of which are fundamental to the development and growth of Marlborough.” Certainly it hasn’t been done in a rush, work having started in 2015.

It was pointed out at a recent open meeting that the middle of the summer holidays is perhaps not the ideal time for such things. However, the above-mentioned post has information about his you can apply for a postal vote (which you need to have done by 27 July). You can also see more about the NDP on the Town Council’s website here.

Community notices

Marlborough Community Fridge, located in the Community Room in the George/Figgins Lane Car Park (just behind the public loos) is open 9am to 11am on Thursdays and Fridays and 9am to 12pm on Saturdays. The fridge is free to access, there are no criteria that have to be met and it is a good way to use up surplus food from supermarkets and businesses that would otherwise go to waste. Please see their facebook page for more details.

• Anyone in the Marlborough area wanting to host or support Ukrainian refugees are invited to join this Facebook page: Ukrainians and their sponsors in Marlborough and surrounding areas.

Wilton Windmill is open to the public on Sundays and Bank Holidays, until the end of the season in September. Visitors are encouraged to bring their own picnics, hot and cold drinks, ice creams and cakes will be available in the shepherd’s hut. See more on the Wilton Windmill website here.

The Stroke Association runs monthly drop-in support sessions at The Jubilee Centre for stroke survivors, their families and carers on Monday mornings. See here for the next date. For more details contact Katie Fielding, from the Stroke Association on 07908 952740 or at katie.fielding@stroke.org.uk

• Four-year-old ‘Super’ Stan who lives in Marlborough has an extremely rare genetic condition. His family is asking for support towards the specialised treatment he needs to be able to walk and talk. If you can help, please click here.

• For the latest information changes to rail services between Bedwyn, Newbury and Paddington we recommend following the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group.

Local events and activities

For more information on events and activities across the Penny Post area, see the website calendar.

• Dates for the diary

Sat 13 Aug Gig on the Green, Marlborough.

Thu 18 Aug Sustainable Marlborough Social, Marlborough.

Sat 26 to Mon 29 Aug Summer Music Festival, Froxfield.

• Regular events

• The Transition Marlborough Hub Group meet on the second Thursday of the month at 7.30pm currently by zoom. To get involved please email enquiries@transitionmarlborough.org.

• Marlborough Park Run is a free, weekly, timed five km walk, jog or run at 9am every Saturday. Open to all ages and abilities. Organised entirely by volunteers. Click here to see their Facebook page.

• Marlborough Floral Club meets 2pm on the first Thursday of the month at the Mildenhall Village Hall. For details please see here or call Micky Graham on 01672 514301.

The Menopause Matters Marlborough facebook group provides a forum for women in Marlborough and the surrounding areas to access information and support relating to menopause.

The White Horse Bookshop is offering workshops until the end of the year, click here for the full list.

News from your local councils

Note: “the most recent meeting” refers to the most recent one for which minutes (in some cases draft) or some other summary is available. Other meetings may have taken place since. Some councils publish minutes more promptly than do others.

• The most recent full meeting of Marlborough Town Council took place on 20 June and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the Port Hill traffic survey; anti-social behaviour; the Community and Youth Centre; the Mayor’s report; bus services; The Council’s Environment and Climate Protection policy; formal matters; committee reports; the Great West Way; and the Herbert Leaf Charitable trust. To see the dates and agendas for future Town Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for the latest on Marlborough’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Ramsbury & Axford Parish Council took place on 20 June and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the co-option of a new councillor; correspondence on a range of matters ranging from bollards to bunting and from white lines to rights of way; committee reports; planning matters; financial matters; footpaths; play areas; The Red Lion in Axford; the PC website; a review of the jubilee events; village maintenance; Ukrainian refugees; the allotments; the Parish Stewards, the school; and the Memorial Hall. To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Chiseldon Parish Council took place on 13 June and you can read the minutes hereTo see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Bishopstone and Hinton Parva Parish Council took place on 6 June and you can download the minutes hereTo see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Aldbourne Parish Council took place on 1 June and you can read the minutes here. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for more information on Aldbourne’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Wanborough Parish Council took place on 23 May and you can read the minutes here. To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the most recent agendas, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St George Parish Council took place on 12 May and you can read the minutes here. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Great Bedwyn Parish Council took place on 12 May and you can read the minutes here. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. There was also an extraordinary meeting on 28 February, the minutes of which you can read here, to vote on the contractor to install the memorial bench at Spaines.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council took place on 23 March and you can read the minutes here.

• Click here for a list of current consultations being run by Wiltshire Council.

• Marlborough area council contacts

Parishes: Marlborough Town CouncilAldbourne Parish CouncilRamsbury & Axford Parish Council, Great Bedwyn Parish Council, Savernake Parish Council, Chiseldon Parish Council, Ogbourne St George Parish Council, Wanborough Parish CouncilBishopstone and Hinton Parva Parish Council  and Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council.

Wiltshire Council: click here to visit the website.

News from other areas

Penny Post area – please see the following separate sections: Hungerford area; Lambourn ValleyNewbury area; Thatcham area; Compton & DownlandsTheale area; Wantage area.

News and views from across the area and beyond: please see the most recent Weekly News with Brian column.

Thursday 14 July 2022

See below for our usual round-up of local news, local events and activities and news from your local councils.

This week’s news

• Ukrainians who have fled the war and settled with host families in the Marlborough area are hosting a Ukrainian Festival this Sun 17 July, with cultural food, drink, live music and art. Check out the Marlborough News article for more information.

• A notice here from Marlborough Town Council as the poll for the Marlborough Area Neighbourhood Plan will take place on 11 August. Details of the meeting can be found here in an older post here.

• Great news as Marlborough Tennis Club has a new sponsor, Brewin Dolphin, who will become sponsors with immediate effect.

• Last opportunity here to be a part of St Mary’s Summer Fayre, which is taking place at Duck’s Meadow tomorrow, Friday 15 July. With a licensed bar, bbq, raffle, bottle tombola and entertainment. See more here.

• Some roadworks news here as the town council has warned that roadworks could be set until 2023 as superfast broadband is being introduced into the town. Works are set to be in place until April 2023 and the workers have been urged to not complete construction between rush hours. See more here in the Gazette and Herald.

• On a lighter note, Marlborough Town Councillors have voted on where to plant 70 trees in conjunction with the Queen’s Green Canopy project. The decision will be revealed in the next minutes of the Amenities and Open Spaces committee meeting. For more information, you can visit here.

• The new Sustainable Marlborough group launched by Hayley Lambert from Hughenden Yard’s zero waste Packaging Not Included shop invites you to join their monthly Sustainable Socials upstairs at Feather Moss Flowers also in Hughenden Yard.

• The Merchant’s House is looking for a full-time shop assistant. If you’re interested in the role, send a CV and covering letter to Jessica Taylor, Shop Manager, at shopmanager@merchantshousetrust.co.uk. The deadline for applications is Monday 18 July, for more information about the role see here.

• Tickets for Marlborough LitFest this autumn are now available to buy from The White Horse Bookshop or from the festival’s website here.

English teaching volunteers wanted to help Ukrainian refugees adjust to life in the UK. If you would be comfortable teaching English online, as a volunteer, Nastia would love to hear from you. She is looking for people who can teach at beginner, intermediate and advanced levels. Please contact her at: nikasling@gmail.com.

Carbon Neutral Aldbourne would like your thoughts on the idea of a car sharing scheme. Please take 2 minutes to answer a few questions here. For more news from CNA see here.

• This is the last opportunity to answer the question “What would make you feel safer at night?” That is the question residents in Wiltshire and Swindon are being asked in a survey, launched by the Wiltshire Police in collaboration with Wiltshire Council and Swindon Borough Council. The survey aims to identify what makes locals feel unsafe, and potential measurements which can be taken to effectivity combat this and make our communities feel safer and more secure. The survey will be open until Tuesday 19 July, to please click here to respond in order to your say.

• Interested in a career in wildlife conservation? Wiltshire Wildlife Trust currently has several vacancies open, such as a Education Support Worker role, as well as several other positions, including various volunteering opportunities. If you would be interested in working with them or learning more about their work, visit their website.

Click here for the latest news from the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group about the continuing threat to direct rail services from Bedwyn, Hungerford and Kintbury to London. The struggle is far from over.

• Did you know Marlborough Town Council runs a small grant scheme for local projects? Community or charity projects can fill out an application, which will be considered by the Council at their Finance & Policy Committee Meetings which happen every few months. For more information about how to apply for the grant, visit the Town Council’s website.

Marlborough Fire Station is looking for new on-call recruits, ideally those who live or work within 5 minutes of the station. On-call firefighters are paid but they are not based at the station like full-time firefighters. They can have other jobs and commitments, only responding to emergencies when their alert goes off. Anyone over 18 with a good standard of physical fitness can apply. Please see Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue to find out more and fill out and application.

• A reminder that Marlborough Town Council is appealing to dog owners to keep dogs on leads in Coopers Meadow to help protect the local wildlife. The nesting season runs between 1 Mar and 31 July and there are currently lots of swan families with young babies. Please help protect our local wildlife, by making sure your dog is leashed until the nesting season is over.

Community notices

Marlborough Community Fridge, located in the Community Room in the George/Figgins Lane Car Park (just behind the public loos) is open 9am to 11am on Thursdays and Fridays and 9am to 12pm on Saturdays. The fridge is free to access, there are no criteria that have to be met and it is a good way to use up surplus food from supermarkets and businesses that would otherwise go to waste. Please see their facebook page for more details.

• Anyone in the Marlborough area wanting to host or support Ukrainian refugees are invited to join this Facebook page: Ukrainians and their sponsors in Marlborough and surrounding areas.

Wilton Windmill is open to the public on Sundays and Bank Holidays, until the end of the season in September. Visitors are encouraged to bring their own picnics, hot and cold drinks, ice creams and cakes will be available in the shepherd’s hut. See more on the Wilton Windmill website here.

The Stroke Association runs monthly drop-in support sessions at The Jubilee Centre for stroke survivors, their families and carers on Monday mornings. See here for the next date. For more details contact Katie Fielding, from the Stroke Association on 07908 952740 or at katie.fielding@stroke.org.uk

• Four-year-old ‘Super’ Stan who lives in Marlborough has an extremely rare genetic condition. His family is asking for support towards the specialised treatment he needs to be able to walk and talk. If you can help, please click here.

• For the latest information changes to rail services between Bedwyn, Newbury and Paddington we recommend following the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group.

Local events and activities

For more information on events and activities across the Penny Post area, see the website calendar.

• Dates for the diary

Sun 17 Jul Ukrainian Festival, the Kennet Valley Hall, between 4pm and 7pm.

Sat 13 Aug Gig on the Green, Trusloe Cottages, 6pm.

Sat 26 Aug Summer Music Festival, at the Pelican Inn, Froxfeild. On until the 29 August.

• Regular events

• The Transition Marlborough Hub Group meet on the second Thursday of the month at 7.30pm currently by zoom. To get involved please email enquiries@transitionmarlborough.org.

• Marlborough Park Run is a free, weekly, timed five km walk, jog or run at 9am every Saturday. Open to all ages and abilities. Organised entirely by volunteers. Click here to see their Facebook page.

• Marlborough Floral Club meets 2pm on the first Thursday of the month at the Mildenhall Village Hall. For details please see here or call Micky Graham on 01672 514301.

The Menopause Matters Marlborough facebook group provides a forum for women in Marlborough and the surrounding areas to access information and support relating to menopause.

The White Horse Bookshop is offering workshops until the end of the year, click here for the full list.

News from your local councils

Note: “the most recent meeting” refers to the most recent one for which minutes (in some cases draft) or some other summary is available. Other meetings may have taken place since. Some councils publish minutes more promptly than do others.

• The most recent full meeting of Marlborough Town Council took place on 20 June and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the Port Hill traffic survey; anti-social behaviour; the Community and Youth Centre; the Mayor’s report; bus services; The Council’s Environment and Climate Protection policy; formal matters; committee reports; the Great West Way; and the Herbert Leaf Charitable trust. To see the dates and agendas for future Town Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for the latest on Marlborough’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Ramsbury & Axford Parish Council took place on 20 June and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the co-option of a new councillor; correspondence on a range of matters ranging from bollards to bunting and from white lines to rights of way; committee reports; planning matters; financial matters; footpaths; play areas; The Red Lion in Axford; the PC website; a review of the jubilee events; village maintenance; Ukrainian refugees; the allotments; the Parish Stewards, the school; and the Memorial Hall. To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Chiseldon Parish Council took place on 13 June and you can read the minutes hereTo see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Bishopstone and Hinton Parva Parish Council took place on 6 June and you can download the minutes hereTo see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Aldbourne Parish Council took place on 1 June and you can read the minutes here. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for more information on Aldbourne’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Wanborough Parish Council took place on 23 May and you can read the minutes here. You can also click here to see the summary of the annual parish assembly on 9 May. To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the most recent agendas, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St George Parish Council took place on 12 May and you can read the minutes here. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Great Bedwyn Parish Council took place on 12 May and you can read the minutes here. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. There was also an extraordinary meeting on 28 February, the minutes of which you can read here, to vote on the contractor to install the memorial bench at Spaines.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council took place on 23 March and you can read the minutes here. You can also click here to read the minutes of the AGM held on 23 May: this included the Chair’s address in which referred that the parish was “emerging through the dark embrace of the Covid cloud.”

• Click here for a list of current consultations being run by Wiltshire Council.

• Marlborough area council contacts

Parishes: Marlborough Town CouncilAldbourne Parish CouncilRamsbury & Axford Parish Council, Great Bedwyn Parish Council, Savernake Parish Council, Chiseldon Parish Council, Ogbourne St George Parish Council, Wanborough Parish CouncilBishopstone and Hinton Parva Parish Council  and Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council.

Wiltshire Council: click here to visit the website.

News from other areas

Penny Post area – please see the following separate sections: Hungerford area; Lambourn ValleyNewbury area; Thatcham area; Compton & Downlands; Burghfield area; Wantage area.

News and views from across the area and beyond: please see the most recent Weekly News with Brian column.

Thursday 7 July 2022

It’s part of an MP’s job description to get themselves in the news and local representative Danny Kruger has done that twice this week, one one occasion saying pretty much what everyone else was and on the other occasion saying pretty much the opposite. There’s also a report into the local police service, a Ukrainian festival  and a psychic fair: plus our usual round-up of local news, local events and activities and news from your local councils.

This week’s news

• Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary and Fire & Rescue Services (HMICFRS)’s new report grades Wiltshire Police as ‘inadequate’ in its ability to respond to the public, protect vulnerable people, and strategic planning. It further describes the Force as ‘requiring improvement’ in a number of other areas from the inspection and makes a series of recommendations of what the Force needs to do to improve the service provided to the public.  Wiltshire and Swindon PCC Philip Wilkinson said: “The Inspectorate’s report is a sobering read and is highly disappointing especially when I know we have many dedicated officers and staff working hard to deliver a quality policing service. But it is absolutely clear from what I have been told by our residents, my own observations and now this report that there are areas of concern that need addressing: victims of crime, vulnerable people and our communities deserve better.”

• Caroline Dallas from Luna Boutiques thanks all their wonderful customers and supporters. After 10 long, hard years of risking everything for the business she believes in, their boutiques in Marlborough, Devizes and Newbury are now busy and full of compliments all day long from people of all ages and sizes and walks of life who love what they do and stand for. If you are looking to refresh your wardrobe this summer, Luna Boutiques offers a lovely range of colourful, comfortable clothes for all sizes and you can shop online as well as in-store.

• This weekend, is the Burbage Primary School Summer Fair. Come along between 12pm and 3pm on Saturday 9 July, for games, raffles and tombolas, as well as food, drinks, cakes and an inflatable obstacle course! For more information refer to the poster on their Facebook Page.

• Fancy something a little bit different this weekend? Well, why not make a trip over to Avebury for the Summer Holistic and Psychic Fayre this weekend. On both Saturday and Sunday at the Avebury Sports and Social Club, from 10.30am to 4.30pm, there will be psychic readers, healers, crystals, cards, runes, artisan jewellery and crafts and much more

• The Merchant’s House is looking for a full-time shop assistant. If you’re interested in the role, send a CV and covering letter to Jessica Taylor, Shop Manager, at shopmanager@merchantshousetrust.co.uk. The deadline for applications is Monday 18 July, for more information about the role see here.

• Local illustrator Charlotte Dryden-Kelsey is holding an open studio at St Peter’s Church most weekends throughout July. Stop by to browse her work or even get yourself illustrated in a live portrait drawing session.

• As mentionned last week, Hayley Lambert who runs Packaging Not Included, the fab zero waste shop in Hughenden Yard has set up a Sustainable Marlborough group. Click here to visit their new website, sign up for their newsletter and find out about the exciting Great Big Green Week scheduled for 24 to 30 September.

• Ukrainian’s who have fled the war and settled with host families in the Marlborough area are planning a Ukrainian Festival, with cultural food, drink, live music and art. There will also be workshops and activities such as making traditional headdresses, games for children, as well as stalls and a charity audition, with money going back to Ukraine to help those who haven’t been able to escape. As well as a fundraiser, the festival is a way to say thank you to those who welcomed them into the community, as well as a learning experience for locals to learn more about Ukrainian culture. Come along to the Kennet Valley Hall on Sunday 17 July between 4pm and 7pm, for what is sure to be both a fun, tasty, and educational experience. Check out the Marlborough News article for more information.

English teaching volunteers wanted to help Ukrainian refugees adjust to life in the UK. If you would be comfortable teaching English online, as a volunteer, Nastia would love to hear from you. She is looking for people who can teach at beginner, intermediate and advanced levels. Please contact her at: nikasling@gmail.com.

• What would make you feel safer at night? That is the question residents in Wiltshire and Swindon are being asked in a survey, launched by the Wiltshire Police in collaboration with Wiltshire Council and Swindon Borough Council. The survey aims to identify what makes locals feel unsafe, and potential measurements which can be taken to  effectivity combat this and make our communities feel more safe and secure. The survey will be open until Tuesday 19 July, to please click here to respond in order to your say.

• Interested in a career in wildlife conservation? Wiltshire Wildlife Trust currently have several vacancies open, such as a Education Support Worker role, as well as several other positions, including various volunteering opportunities. If you would be interested in working with them or learning more about their work, visit their website.

Click here for the latest news from the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group about the continuing threat to direct rail services from Bedwyn, Hungerford and Kintbury to London. The struggle is far from over.

• As we mentioned last week, Wiltshire Council has been awarded £1.2m of Department for Transport (DfT) funding to launch an improved flexible, on-demand bus service in the Pewsey Vale area – and wants to hear from people on what the new service should look like. The survey runs until Friday 15 July, and people can have their say and find out more, including a map of the service area, please click here. Many thanks to the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group for bringing this to our attention.

• Did you know Marlborough Town Council runs a small grant scheme for local projects? Community or charity projects can fill out an application, which will be considered by the Council at their Finance & Policy Committee Meetings which happen every few months. For more information about how to apply for the grant, visit the Town Council’s website.

Marlborough Fire Station is looking for new on-call recruits, ideally those who live or work within 5 minutes of the station. On-call firefighters are paid but they are not based at the station like full-time firefighters. They can have other jobs and commitments, only responding to emergencies when their alert goes off. Anyone over 18 with a good standard of physical fitness can apply. Please see Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue to find out more and fill out and application.

• A reminder that Marlborough Town Council is appealing to dog owners to keep dogs on leads in Coopers Meadow to help protect the local wildlife. The nesting season runs between 1 Mar and 31 July and there are currently lots of swan families with young babies. Please help protect our local wildlife, by making sure your dog is leashed until the nesting season is over.

Two interventions

Danny Kruger, the MP for Devizes (which includes Marlborough) has been particularly in the news twice in the last week or so. The more recent of these was on 6 July when he, along with seemingly just about everyone else who held any kind of ministerial role, resigned from his role as Parliamentary Private Secretary. In his case, this was in support of his boss Michael Gove who was fired by the PM as Secretary of State for Levelling-up, Housing and Communities. previously supportive of the PM, earlier this week he clearly felt either that enough was enough or that brand BoJo had become dangerously toxic: opinion differs to what extent each MP’s decision to jump ship was motivated by principle or by self-interest.

His other intervention was vastly more controversial and concerned abortion, a Commons debate being called on 28 June in the light of the Rowe v Wade Supreme Court decision in the USA. You can see a video of his speech in this article in Marie Clare (scroll down a bit), which leaves the reader in no doubt what the author thinks about this issue, and Danny Kruger. He then claimed that his remarks had been “misunderstood”and that the numerous people who had criticised him had claimed that he had in effect tried “to dictate what a woman should do with her own body.”He then turned to Twitter to re-state the point in his speech that “in the case of abortion’ a woman’s ‘absolute right to bodily autonomy…is qualified by the fact that another body is involved.” This seems to me to no more than a statement of self-evident fact. He added that “this is the basis of the law as it stands, which recognises that somewhere along the journey towards birth the foetus or baby acquires rights of its own.” The key phrase is “somewhere along the journey towards birth”, no one being able to agree when this moment arrives.

Mr Kruger added that the “avalanche of abuse and misrepresentation online is sadly redolent of the debate that has polarised the US for decades.” Polarising it certainly is but everyone’s entitles to a reasonable opinion and his doesn’t seem unreasonable to me: it’s a point of view on a matter which can never be conclusively proved. Anyway, though on that: I expressed a few thoughts on this delicate matter last week and I’m not going to wade (or row) into the subject again. Others will, though.

Community notices

Marlborough Community Fridge, located in the Community Room in the George/Figgins Lane Car Park (just behind the public loos) is open 9am to 11am on Thursdays and Fridays and 9am to 12pm on Saturdays. The fridge is free to access, there are no criteria that have to be met and it is a good way to use up surplus food from supermarkets and businesses that would otherwise go to waste. Please see their facebook page for more details.

• Anyone in the Marlborough area wanting to host or support Ukrainian refugees are invited to join this Facebook page: Ukrainians and their sponsors in Marlborough and surrounding areas.

Wilton Windmill is open to the public on Sundays and Bank Holidays, until the end of the season in September. Visitors are encouraged to bring their own picnics, hot and cold drinks, ice creams and cakes will be available in the shepherd’s hut. See more on the Wilton Windmill website here.

The Stroke Association runs monthly drop-in support sessions at The Jubilee Centre for stroke survivors, their families and carers on Monday mornings. See here for the next date. For more details contact Katie Fielding, from the Stroke Association on 07908 952740 or at katie.fielding@stroke.org.uk

• Four-year-old ‘Super’ Stan who lives in Marlborough has an extremely rare genetic condition. His family is asking for support towards the specialised treatment he needs to be able to walk and talk. If you can help, please click here.

• For the latest information changes to rail services between Bedwyn, Newbury and Paddington we recommend following the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group.

Local events and activities

For more information on events and activities across the Penny Post area, see the website calendar.

• Dates for the diary

Sat 9 Jul Burbage Primary Summer Fair, Burbage Primary School, 12pm to 3pm.

Sat 9 Jul Summer Holistic and Psychic Fayre, taking place at the Avebury Sports & Social Club. On until 10 July.

Sun 17 Jul Ukrainian Festival, the Kennet Valley Hall, between 4pm and 7pm.

Sat 13 Aug Gig on the Green, Trusloe Cottages, 6pm.

Sat 26 Aug Summer Music Festival, at the Pelican Inn, Froxfeild. On until the 29 August.

• Regular events

• The Transition Marlborough Hub Group meet on the second Thursday of the month at 7.30pm currently by zoom. To get involved please email enquiries@transitionmarlborough.org.

• Marlborough Park Run is a free, weekly, timed five km walk, jog or run at 9am every Saturday. Open to all ages and abilities. Organised entirely by volunteers. Click here to see their Facebook page.

• Marlborough Floral Club meets 2pm on the first Thursday of the month at the Mildenhall Village Hall. For details please see here or call Micky Graham on 01672 514301.

The Menopause Matters Marlborough facebook group provides a forum for women in Marlborough and the surrounding areas to access information and support relating to menopause.

The White Horse Bookshop is offering workshops until the end of the year, click here for the full list.

News from your local councils

Note: “the most recent meeting” refers to the most recent one for which minutes (in some cases draft) or some other summary is available. Other meetings may have taken place since. Some councils publish minutes more promptly than do others.

• The most recent full meeting of Marlborough Town Council took place on 23 May. The meeting was, however, adjourned early as it was not quorate. The most recent completed meeting was on 11 April and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: a report from the police; tenancy problems at York Place; two length-of-service awards; a councillor vacancy; a statement from Forestry England (see also sections above); the Christchurch Methodist Church and Church Hall; the Salisbury Road Recreation Ground workshop; corporate identity; Swindon 105.5; the climate emergency working party; the jubilee; financial matters; and committee reports. (The meeting lasted three hours and six minutes: not a record, but quite impressive.) There was also an extraordinary meeting on 16 May to conduct formal businessTo see the dates and agendas for future Town Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for the latest on Marlborough’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Ramsbury & Axford Parish Council took place on 20 June and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the co-option of a new councillor; correspondence on a range of matters ranging from bollards to bunting and from white lines to rights of way; committee reports; planning matters; financial matters; footpaths; play areas; The Red Lion in Axford; the PC website; a review of the jubilee events; village maintenance; Ukrainian refugees; the allotments; the Parish Stewards, the school; and the Memorial Hall. To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Chiseldon Parish Council took place on 13 June and you can read the minutes hereTo see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Bishopstone and Hinton Parva Parish Council took place on 6 June and you can download the minutes hereTo see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Aldbourne Parish Council took place on 1 June and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: parking; street lights; verges; damaged railings; financial matters; the parish’s virtual paths; repairs and maintenance issues; wildflowers; repairs to the SIDs; and the Parish Steward. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for more information on Aldbourne’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Wanborough Parish Council took place on 23 May and you can read the minutes here. You can also click here to see the summary of the annual parish assembly on 9 May. To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the most recent agendas, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Great Bedwyn Parish Council took place on 12 May and you can read the minutes here. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. There was also an extraordinary meeting on 28 February, the minutes of which you can read here, to vote on the contractor to install the memorial bench at Spaines.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council took place on 23 March and you can read the minutes here. You can also click here to read the minutes of the AGM held on 23 May: this included the Chair’s address in which referred that the parish was “emerging through the dark embrace of the Covid cloud.”

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St George Parish Council took place on 10 March and you can read the minutes here. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• Click here for a list of current consultations being run by Wiltshire Council.

• Marlborough area council contacts

Parishes: Marlborough Town CouncilAldbourne Parish CouncilRamsbury & Axford Parish Council, Great Bedwyn Parish Council, Savernake Parish Council, Chiseldon Parish Council, Ogbourne St George Parish Council, Wanborough Parish CouncilBishopstone and Hinton Parva Parish Council and Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council.

Wiltshire Council: click here to visit the website.

News from other areas

Penny Post area – please see the following separate sections: Hungerford area; Lambourn ValleyNewbury area; Thatcham area; Compton & DownlandsTheale area; Wantage area.

News and views from across the area and beyond: please see the most recent Weekly News with Brian column.

Thursday 30 June 2022

Scroll down for our usual round-up of local news, local events and activities and news from your local councils.

This week’s news

• Exciting news for any local cinephiles! The Ignite Film Festival is back, now in the new venue of The Parade Cinema in Marlborough until Saturday 2 July. This four-day film festival showcases an array of incredible film talent from around the world, screening over 50 short films, across multiple genres from drama, to horror to animations and much more. Read more about this exciting event in our article here. See their website for a full list of films.

• This weekend, why not enjoy some music with the Marlborough Orchestra Summer Concert, which will be performing a bill of classical music at St Mary’s Church on Saturday 2 July, starting at 7:30pm. Get your tickets here.

• Hayley Lambert who runs Packaging Not Included, the fab zero waste shop in Hughenden Yard has set up a Sustainable Marlborough group. Click here to visit their new website, sign up for their newsletter and find out about the exciting Great Big Green Week scheduled for 24 – 30 September.

• Ukrainian’s who have fled the war and settled with host families in the Marlborough area are planning a Ukrainian Festival, with cultural food, drink, live music and art. There will also be workshops and activities such as making traditional headdresses, games for children, as well as stalls and a charity audition, with money going back to Ukraine to help those who haven’t been able to escape. As well as a fundraiser, the festival is a way to say thank you to those who welcomed them into the community, as well as a learning experience for locals to learn more about Ukrainian culture. Come along to the Kennet Valley Hall on Sunday 17 July between 4pm and 7pm, for what is sure to be both a fun, tasty, and educational experience. Check out the Marlborough News article for more information.

English teaching volunteers wanted to help Ukrainian refugees adjust to life in the UK. If you would be comfortable teaching English online, as a volunteer, Nastia would love to hear from you. She is looking for people who can teach at beginner, intermediate and advanced levels. Please contact her at: nikasling@gmail.com.

• What would make you feel safer at night? That is the question residents in Wiltshire and Swindon are being asked in a survey, launched by the Wiltshire Police in collaboration with Wiltshire Council and Swindon Borough Council. The survey aims to identify what makes locals feel unsafe, and potential measurements which can be taken to  effectivity combat this and make our communities feel more safe and secure. The survey will be open until Tuesday 19 July, to please click here to respond in order to your say.

• Local illustrator Charlotte Dryden-Kelsey is holding an open studio at St Peter’s Church during July. Stop by to browse her work or even get yourself illustrated in a live portrait drawing session.

• Interested in a career in wildlife conservation? Wiltshire Wildlife Trust currently have several vacancies open, such as a Education Support Worker role, as well as several other positions, including various volunteering opportunities. If you would be interested in working with them or learning more about their work, visit their website.

Click here for the latest news from the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group about the continuing threat to direct rail services from Bedwyn, Hungerford and Kintbury to London. The struggle is far from over.

• As we mentioned last week, Wiltshire Council has been awarded £1.2m of Department for Transport (DfT) funding to launch an improved flexible, on-demand bus service in the Pewsey Vale area – and wants to hear from people on what the new service should look like. The survey runs until Friday 15 July, and people can have their say and find out more, including a map of the service area, please click here. Many thanks to the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group for bringing this to our attention.

• Did you know Marlborough Town Council runs a small grant scheme for local projects? Community or charity projects can fill out an application, which will be considered by the Council at their Finance & Policy Committee Meetings which happen every few months. For more information about how to apply for the grant, visit the Town Council’s website.

Marlborough Fire Station is looking for new on-call recruits, ideally those who live or work within 5 minutes of the station. On-call firefighters are paid but they are not based at the station like full-time firefighters. They can have other jobs and commitments, only responding to emergencies when their alert goes off. Anyone over 18 with a good standard of physical fitness can apply. Please see Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue to find out more and fill out and application.

• A reminder that Marlborough Town Council is appealing to dog owners to keep dogs on leads in Coopers Meadow to help protect the local wildlife. The nesting season runs between 1 Mar and 31 July and there are currently lots of swan families with young babies. Please help protect our local wildlife, by making sure your dog is leashed until nesting season is over.

Community notices

Marlborough Community Fridge, located in the Community Room in the George/Figgins Lane Car Park (just behind the public loos) is open 9am to 11am on Thursdays and Fridays and 9am to 12pm on Saturdays. The fridge is free to access, there are no criteria that have to be met and it is a good way to use up surplus food from supermarkets and businesses that would otherwise go to waste. Please see their facebook page for more details.

• Anyone in the Marlborough area wanting to host or support Ukrainian refugees are invited to join this Facebook page: Ukrainians and their sponsors in Marlborough and surrounding areas.

Wilton Windmill is now open to the public on Sundays and Bank Holidays, until the end of the season in September. Visitors are encouraged to bring their own picnics, hot and cold drinks, ice creams and cakes will be available in the shepherd’s hut. See more on the Wilton Windmill website here.

The Stroke Association runs monthly drop-in support sessions at The Jubilee Centre for stroke survivors, their families and carers on Monday mornings. See here for the next date. For more details contact Katie Fielding, from the Stroke Association on 07908 952740 or at katie.fielding@stroke.org.uk

• 4 year old ‘Super’ Stan who lives in Marlborough has an extremely rare genetic condition. His family are asking for support towards the specialised treatment he needs to be able to walk and talk. If you can help, please click here.

• For the latest information changes to rail services between Bedwyn, Newbury and Paddington we recommend following the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group.

Local events and activities

For more information on events and activities across the Penny Post area, see the website calendar.

• Dates for the diary

On now The Ignite Festival, The Parade Cinema, Marlborough. On until 2 July.

Sat 2 July Family Fun Day, Marlborough Town Football Club, from 12pm to 4pm.

Sat 2 July Marlborough Orchestra Summer Concert, St Mary’s Church, 7:30pm.

Sun 3 Jul Great Bedwyn Fun Run, at Great Bedwyn C of E School, from 9:30am.

Sat 9 Jul Summer Holistic and Psychic Fayre, taking place at the Avebury Sports & Social Club. On until 10 July.

Sun 17 Jul Ukrainian Festival, the Kennet Valley Hall, between 4pm and 7pm.

Sat 13 Aug Gig on the Green, Trusloe Cottages, 6pm.

Sat 26 Aug Summer Music Festival, at the Pelican Inn, Froxfeild. On until the 29 August.

• Regular events

• The Transition Marlborough Hub Group meet on the second Thursday of the month at 7.30pm currently by zoom. To get involved please email enquiries@transitionmarlborough.org.

• Marlborough Park Run is a free, weekly, timed five km walk, jog or run at 9am every Saturday. Open to all ages and abilities. Organised entirely by volunteers. Click here to see their Facebook page.

• Marlborough Floral Club meets 2pm on the first Thursday of the month at the Mildenhall Village Hall. For details please see here or call Micky Graham on 01672 514301.

The Menopause Matters Marlborough facebook group provides a forum for women in Marlborough and the surrounding areas to access information and support relating to menopause.

The White Horse Bookshop is offering workshops until the end of the year, click here for the full list.

News from your local councils

Note: “the most recent meeting” refers to the most recent one for which minutes (in some cases draft) or some other summary is available. Other meetings may have taken place since. Some councils publish minutes more promptly than do others.

• The most recent full meeting of Marlborough Town Council took place on 23 May. The meeting was, however, adjourned early as it was not quorate. The most recent completed meeting was on 11 April and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: a report from the police; tenancy problems at York Place; two length-of-service awards; a councillor vacancy; a statement from Forestry England (see also sections above); the Christchurch Methodist Church and Church Hall; the Salisbury Road Recreation Ground workshop; corporate identity; Swindon 105.5; the climate emergency working party; the jubilee; financial matters; and committee reports. (The meeting lasted three hours and six minutes: not a record, but quite impressive.) There was also an extraordinary meeting on 16 May to conduct formal businessTo see the dates and agendas for future Town Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for the latest on Marlborough’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Ramsbury & Axford Parish Council took place on 20 June and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the co-option of a new councillor; correspondence on a range of matters ranging from bollards to bunting and from white lines to rights of way; committee reports; planning matters; financial matters; footpaths; play areas; The Red Lion in Axford; the PC website; a review of the jubilee events; village maintenance; Ukrainian refugees; the allotments; the Parish Stewards, the school; and the Memorial Hall. To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Aldbourne Parish Council took place on 1 June and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: parking; street lights; verges; damaged railings; financial matters; the parish’s virtual paths; repairs and maintenance issues; wildflowers; repairs to the SIDs; and the Parish Steward. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for more information on Aldbourne’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Great Bedwyn Parish Council took place on 12 May and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included; condolences following the death of Councillor Jenny Clack; the co-option of a new member; dog mess; parking on pavements; an alleged case of vexatious complaints; actions from the previous meeting; speeding; grants made by the Council; formal matters; parish maintenance; planning matters; and financial matters. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. There was also an extraordinary meeting on 28 February, the minutes of which you can read here, to vote on the contractor to install the memorial bench at Spaines.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council took place on 23 March and you can read the minutes here. You can also click here to read the minutes of the AGM held on 23 May: this included the Chair’s address in which referred that the parish was “emerging through the dark embrace of the Covid cloud.”

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St George Parish Council took place on 10 March and you can read the minutes here. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• Click here for a list of current consultations being run by Wiltshire Council.

• Marlborough area council contacts

Parishes: Marlborough Town CouncilAldbourne Parish CouncilRamsbury & Axford Parish Council, Great Bedwyn Parish Council, Savernake Parish CouncilOgbourne St George Parish Council and Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council.

Wiltshire Council: click here to visit the website.

News from other areas

Penny Post area – please see the following separate sections: Hungerford area; Lambourn ValleyNewbury area; Thatcham area; Compton & DownlandsTheale area; Wantage area; Swindon area.

News and views from across the area and beyond: please see the most recent Weekly News with Brian column.

Archives

To see earlier Marlborough & Surrounding Area Weekly News columns, please click here.

Thursday 23 June 2022

Scroll down for our usual round-up of local news, local events and activities and news from your local councils.

This week’s news

• Coming up in Aldbourne this weekend is the Open Gardens afternoon on Sunday 26 June, showcasing gardens in the village where wildlife is thriving. From minimal effort, hands-off gardens to high-maintenance showstoppers, Carbon Neutral Aldbourne want to show people how beautiful, diverse and satisfying wildlife gardens can be. Maps, children’s quiz, garden info and refreshments available at the Memorial Hall. See here for more details.

• Also this weekend will be the Ogbourne Primary School Summer Fair, with all kinds of fun games and prizes to be won. Taking place on Saturday 25 June, from 12pm to 3pm, all money raised will go towards the Ogborune PSA Charity, which helps fund the school. More info about this event here.

• You may be aware already of the railway strikes that are taking place this weekend, which will impact a lot of travel routes across Wiltshire. Fortunately, Wiltshire Live, have compiled a very helpful full list of affected routes, which can be found here. They also have a survey on how the strikes will be affecting you, which can be completed via the same link. It is also worth noting that any fares affected will be refunded in full. A full timetable of the strikes is also available here on the GWR site.

• The wonderful North Wessex Downs Walking Festival finishes this Sunday 26 June so click here if you want to book place on one of the last remaining walks.

• What would make you feel safer at night? That is the question residents in Wiltshire and Swindon are being asked in a survey, launched by the Wiltshire Police in collaboration with Wiltshire Council and Swindon Borough Council. The survey aims to identify what makes locals feel unsafe, and potential measurements which can be taken to  effectivity combat this and make our communities feel more safe and secure. The survey will be open until Tuesday 19 July, to please click here to respond in order to your say.

• Exciting news for any local cinephiles! The Ignite Film Festival is back, taking place in its new home of The Parade Cinema in Marlborough, from Tuesday 28 of June to Saturday 2 of July 2022. This four-day film festival showcases an array of incredible film talent from around the world, screening over 50 short films, across multiple genres from drama, to horror to animations and much more. There is a spectacular line-up of independent films for and even some Q&A’s with their creators. Read more about this exciting event in our article here. You can also check out their their website for a full list of films and click here to take a look at tickets.

• 4 year old ‘Super’ Stan who lives in Marlborough has an extremely rare genetic condition. His family are asking for support towards the specialised treatment he needs to be able to walk and talk. If you can help, please click here.

• Local illustrator Charlotte Dryden-Kelsey is holding an open studio at St Peter’s Church during July. Stop by to browse her work or even get yourself illustrated in a live portrait drawing session.

• Interested in a career in wildlife conservation? Wiltshire Wildlife Trust currently have several vacancies open, including a Conservationist Traineeship, Education Support Worker role, as well as several other positions. They also have various volunteering opportunities. If you would be interested in working with them or learning more about their work, visit their website.

Click here for the latest news from the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group about the continuing threat to direct rail services from Bedwyn, Hungerford and Kintbury to London. The struggle is far from over.

• As we mentioned last week, Wiltshire Council has been awarded £1.2m of Department for Transport (DfT) funding to launch an improved flexible, on-demand bus service in the Pewsey Vale area – and wants to hear from people on what the new service should look like. The survey runs until Friday 15 July, and people can have their say and find out more, including a map of the service area, please click here. Many thanks to the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group for bringing this to our attention.

English teaching volunteers wanted to help Ukrainian refugees adjust to life in the UK. If you would be comfortable teaching English online, as a volunteer, Nastia would love to hear from you. She is looking for people who can teach at beginner, intermediate and advanced levels. Please contact her at: nikasling@gmail.com.

• Did you know Marlborough Town Council runs a small grant scheme for local projects? Community or charity projects can fill out an application, which will be considered by the Council at their Finance & Policy Committee Meetings which happen every few months. For more information about how to apply for the grant, visit the Town Council’s website.

Marlborough Fire Station is looking for new on-call recruits, ideally those who live or work within 5 minutes of the station. On-call firefighters are paid but they are not based at the station like full-time firefighters. They can have other jobs and commitments, only responding to emergencies when their alert goes off. Anyone over 18 with a good standard of physical fitness can apply. Please see Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue to find out more and fill out and application.

• A reminder that Marlborough Town Council is appealing to dog owners to keep dogs on leads in Coopers Meadow to help protect the local wildlife. The nesting season runs between 1 Mar and 31 July and there are currently lots of swan families with young babies. Please help protect our local wildlife, by making sure your dog is leashed until nesting season is over.

Community notices

Marlborough Community Fridge, located in the Community Room in the George/Figgins Lane Car Park (just behind the public loos) is open 9am to 11am on Thursdays and Fridays and 9am to 12pm on Saturdays. The fridge is free to access, there are no criteria that have to be met and it is a good way to use up surplus food from supermarkets and businesses that would otherwise go to waste. Please see their facebook page for more details.

• Marlborough Town Council has exciting plans for Marlborough’s Festival of Flowers and Marlborough in Bloom, with an option Jubilee-theme, through June and July. Visit their website here to find out how you can get involved.

• Anyone in the Marlborough area wanting to host or support Ukrainian refugees are invited to join this Facebook page: Ukrainians and their sponsors in Marlborough and surrounding areas.

• Calling wildlife friendly gardeners in Aldbourne: if you would like to open your garden for Carbon Neutral Aldbourne’s Open Gardens on Sunday 26 June please email carbonneutralaldbourne@gmail.com. From minimal effort, hands-off gardens to high-maintenance showstoppers they want to show how beautiful, diverse and satisfying wildlife gardens can be.

Wilton Windmill is now open to the public on Sundays and Bank Holidays, until the end of the season in September. Visitors are encouraged to bring their own picnics, hot and cold drinks, ice creams and cakes will be available in the shepherd’s hut. See more on the Wilton Windmill website here.

The Stroke Association runs monthly drop-in support sessions at The Jubilee Centre for stroke survivors, their families and carers on Monday mornings. See here for the next date. For more details contact Katie Fielding, from the Stroke Association on 07908 952740 or at katie.fielding@stroke.org.uk

• For the latest information changes to rail services between Bedwyn, Newbury and Paddington we recommend following the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group.

Local events and activities

For more information on events and activities across the Penny Post area, see the website calendar.

• Dates for the diary

Sat 25 June Ogbourne Primary Summer Fair, at Ogbourne Primary School, 12pm to 3pm.

Tue 28 June The Ignite Festival, The Parade Cinema, Marlborough. On until 2 July.

Sat 2 July Family Fun Day, Marlborough Town Football Club, from 12pm to 4pm.

Sat 2 July Marlborough Orchestra Summer Concert, St Mary’s Church, 7:30pm.

Sun 3 Jul Great Bedwyn Fun Run, at Great Bedwyn C of E School, from 9:30am.

Sat 13 Aug Gig on the Green, Trusloe Cottages, 6pm.

• Regular events

• The Transition Marlborough Hub Group meet on the second Thursday of the month at 7.30pm currently by zoom. To get involved please email enquiries@transitionmarlborough.org.

• Marlborough Park Run is a free, weekly, timed five km walk, jog or run at 9am every Saturday. Open to all ages and abilities. Organised entirely by volunteers. Click here to see their Facebook page.

• Marlborough Floral Club meets 2pm on the first Thursday of the month at the Mildenhall Village Hall. For details please see here or call Micky Graham on 01672 514301.

The Menopause Matters Marlborough facebook group provides a forum for women in Marlborough and the surrounding areas to access information and support relating to menopause.

The White Horse Bookshop is offering workshops until the end of the year, click here for the full list.

News from your local councils

Note: “the most recent meeting” refers to the most recent one for which minutes (in some cases draft) or some other summary is available. Other meetings may have taken place since. Some councils publish minutes more promptly than do others.

• The most recent full meeting of Marlborough Town Council took place on 23 May and you can read the minutes here. The meeting was, however, adjourned early as it was not quorate. The most recent completed meeting was on 11 April and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: a report from the police; tenancy problems at York Place; two length-of-service awards; a councillor vacancy; a statement from Forestry England (see also sections above); the Christchurch Methodist Church and Church Hall; the Salisbury Road Recreation Ground workshop; corporate identity; Swindon 105.5; the climate emergency working party; the jubilee; financial matters; and committee reports. (The meeting lasted three hours and six minutes: not a record, but quite impressive.) There was also an extraordinary meeting on 16 May to conduct formal business; and the annual council meeting on 9 May which was mainly concerned with the Mayor-making ceremony.  To see the dates and agendas for future Town Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for the latest on Marlborough’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Aldbourne Parish Council took place on 1 June and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: parking; street lights; verges; damaged railings; financial matters; the parish’s virtual paths; repairs and maintenance issues; wildflowers; repairs to the SIDs; and the Parish Steward. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for more information on Aldbourne’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Great Bedwyn Parish Council took place on 12 May and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included; condolences following the death of Councillor Jenny Clack; the co-option of a new member; dog mess; parking on pavements; an alleged case of vexatious complaints; actions from the previous meeting; speeding; grants made by the Council; formal matters; parish maintenance; planning matters; and financial matters. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. There was also an extraordinary meeting on 28 February, the minutes of which you can read here, to vote on the contractor to install the memorial bench at Spaines.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council took place on 23 March and you can read the minutes here. You can also click here to read the minutes of the AGM held on 23 May: this included the Chair’s address in which referred that the parish was “emerging through the dark embrace of the Covid cloud.”

• The most recent meeting of Ramsbury & Axford Parish Council took place on 21 March and you can read the minutes here. To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St George Parish Council took place on 10 March and you can read the minutes here. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• Click here for a list of current consultations being run by Wiltshire Council.

• Marlborough area council contacts

Parishes: Marlborough Town CouncilAldbourne Parish CouncilRamsbury & Axford Parish Council, Great Bedwyn Parish Council, Savernake Parish CouncilOgbourne St George Parish Council and Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council.

Wiltshire Council: click here to visit the website.

News from other areas

Penny Post area – please see the following separate sections: Hungerford area; Lambourn ValleyNewbury area; Thatcham area; Compton & DownlandsTheale area; Wantage area; Swindon area.

News and views from across the area and beyond: please see the most recent Weekly News with Brian column.

Thursday 16 June 2022

This week we celebrate an ark in the house and also have our usual round-up of local news, local events and activities and news from your local councils.

This week’s news

• The North Wessex Downs Walking Festival offers three great Marlborough-based walks this Saturday 28 June. Starting at 9.30am a chalkstream wildlife walk with ARK at Stonebridge Reserve, Discovering Marlborough’s History; a walk around the High Street starts at 11am and Discovering Marlborough’s History; the River Kennet, The Parade, and The Green starts at 2pm.

• Fancy kicking off your weekend with some live music? This Friday 17 June, from 8pm until 10:30 the Green Dragon pub on Marlborough High Street will have a live band performing a mix of upbeat acoustic and electric songs from the 60s to the present day.

• Did you know Marlborough Town Council runs a small grant scheme for local projects? Community or charity projects can fill out an application, which will be considered by the Council at their Finance & Policy Committee Meetings which happen every few months. The next meeting will be on the 5 July, apply by 21 June for consideration at that meeting. The following meeting will be in October. For more information about how to apply for the grant, visit the Town Council’s website.

• If you need some last minute Father’s Day gift ideas for Sunday, see our quick guide here to some simple, eco-friendly options.

• This weekend over at Aldbourne Village Green, will be the Summer Fair and 5k Fun Run. Both events are being put on by the local St Michaels Primary School and the money raised will go back into the school, funding things like school trips, new equipment and nice treats for the children. The Summer Fair will start on Saturday 18 June, from 10am, and have all sorts of fun games and stalls to check out and the Fun Run will start at 11am. Check out their website for more information and tickets.

• Also coming up in Aldbourne is their Open Gardens afternoon on Sunday 26 June showcasing gardens in the village where wildlife is thriving. From minimal effort, hands-off gardens to high-maintenance showstoppers, Carbon Neutral Aldbourne want to show people how beautiful, diverse and satisfying wildlife gardens can be. Maps, children’s quiz, garden info and refreshments available at the Memorial Hall. See here for more details.

• Don’t worry if you can’t make the festivities over at Aldbourne, as there are plenty other fun summer events coming up over the next few weeks. Next weekend on Saturday 25 June will be the Ogbourne Primary School Summer Fair, with all kinds of games and prizes to be won. More info about that one here.

Great Bedwyn’s Summer Fete and various Fun Run events will be on Sunday 3 July, with medals for the winners. They aim to use the funds raised from both events to build a new outdoor classroom for the school. You can register for the Fun Run here or just turn up on the day.

• Local illustrator Charlotte Dryden-Kelsey is holding an open studio at St Peter’s Church during July. Stop by to browse her work or even get yourself illustrated in a live portrait drawing session.

• 4 year old ‘Super’ Stan who lives in Marlborough has an extremely rare genetic condition. His family are asking for support towards the specialised treatment he needs to be able to walk and talk. If you can help, please click here.

• Interested in a career in wildlife conservation? Wiltshire Wildlife Trust currently have several vacancies open, including a Conservationist Traineeship, Education Support Worker role, as well as several other positions. They also have various volunteering opportunities. If you would be interested in working with them or learning more about their work, visit their website.

Marlborough Town Football Club will be holding a free Family Fun day, with lots of fun activities to participate in, as well as a Youth Football Tournament on Saturday 2 July, between 12pm and 4pm.

Click here for the latest news from the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group about the continuing threat to direct rail services from Bedwyn, Hungerford and Kintbury to London. The struggle is far from over.

• As we mentioned last week, Wiltshire Council has been awarded £1.2m of Department for Transport (DfT) funding to launch an improved flexible, on-demand bus service in the Pewsey Vale area – and wants to hear from people on what the new service should look like. The area it will cover takes in much of Pewsey Vale; from the eastern edge of Devizes, north to Beckhampton and Marlborough, and east to Collingbourne Ducis, Shalbourne and Froxfield, including Pewsey, Burbage, Great Bedwyn and Everleigh. This rural service would provide links to Devizes, Ludgershall and Tidworth, so people can take bus services to other towns. The survey runs until Friday 15 July, and people can have their say and find out more, including a map of the service area, please click here. Many thanks to the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group for bringing this to our attention.

English teaching volunteers wanted to help Ukrainian refugees adjust to life in the UK. If you would be comfortable teaching English online, as a volunteer, Nastia would love to hear from you. She is looking for people who can teach at beginner, intermediate and advanced levels. Please contact her at: nikasling@gmail.com.

Marlborough Fire Station is currently looking for new on-call recruits, ideally those who live or work within 5 minutes of the station. On-call firefighters are paid but they are not based at the station like full-time firefighters. They can have other jobs and commitments, only responding to emergencies when their alert goes off. Anyone is welcome to apply, so long as they are over 18 and have a good standard of physical fitness. If you or anyone you know would be interested, follow this link to the Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue to find out more and fill out and application.

• A reminder that Marlborough Town Council is appealing to dog owners to keep dogs on leads in Coopers Meadow to help protect the local wildlife. The nesting season runs between 1 Mar and 31 July and there are currently lots of swan families with young babies. Please help protect our local wildlife, by making sure your dog is leashed until nesting season is over.

• There are currently roadworks in Aldbourne along Aldbourne Road, Lottage Road and Baydon Road until 24 June at 3.30pm. See here on one.network for more.

ARK in the House

Pollution from untreated sewage continues to be a serious problem for the rivers in the Kennet and Pang catchments. Last year more than 1,020 spills of untreated sewage lasted for 12,837 hours in the Kennet catchment, and 363 spills for 5,317 hours on the river Pang.

In parliament last week Danny Kruger MP joined a debate lasting more than two hours calling for the water industry regulator OFWAT to do more to make sure that water companies clean up their act. Government instructs OFWAT on what its priorities should be and rivers trusts including Action for the River Kennet (ARK) are amongst many campaign groups asking OFWAT to make preventing river pollution a top priority.

Danny Kruger joined other MPs calling for tougher regulation on the water industry, a constructive approach to fines for pollution that would allow fines to be used to make good damage done, and more use of more nature-based solutions like wetlands and reedbeds to supplement improved sewer infrastructure. Danny Kruger made special mention of the work of ARK when he said: ‘I end with a tribute to some people in Wiltshire who have inspired me to take up the mission of cleaning up our rivers…I thank Charlotte Hitchmough, who leads Action for the River Kennet, which is an outstanding charity—I have been out planting trees and supporting its work.’

‘We are very pleased to see this issue debated in parliament,” Charlotte Hitchmough said, “and would like to thank Danny Kruger and his colleagues for sponsoring the debate and drawing attention to the groundswell of public opinion and scientific evidence that clearly shows we need to stop polluting our rivers with untreated sewage’.

Community notices

Marlborough Community Fridge, located in the Community Room in the George/Figgins Lane Car Park (just behind the public loos) is open 9am to 11am on Thursdays and Fridays and 9am to 12pm on Saturdays. The fridge is free to access, there are no criteria that have to be met and it is a good way to use up surplus food from supermarkets and businesses that would otherwise go to waste. Please see their facebook page for more details.

• Marlborough Town Council has exciting plans for Marlborough’s Festival of Flowers and Marlborough in Bloom, with an option Jubilee-theme, through June and July. Visit their website here to find out how you can get involved.

• Anyone in the Marlborough area wanting to host or support Ukrainian refugees are invited to join this Facebook page: Ukrainians and their sponsors in Marlborough and surrounding areas.

• Calling wildlife friendly gardeners in Aldbourne: if you would like to open your garden for Carbon Neutral Aldbourne’s Open Gardens on Sunday 26 June please email carbonneutralaldbourne@gmail.com. From minimal effort, hands-off gardens to high-maintenance showstoppers they want to show how beautiful, diverse and satisfying wildlife gardens can be.

Wilton Windmill is now open to the public on Sundays and Bank Holidays, until the end of the season in September. Visitors are encouraged to bring their own picnics, hot and cold drinks, ice creams and cakes will be available in the shepherd’s hut. See more on the Wilton Windmill website here.

The Stroke Association runs monthly drop-in support sessions at The Jubilee Centre for stroke survivors, their families and carers on Monday mornings. See here for the next date. For more details contact Katie Fielding, from the Stroke Association on 07908 952740 or at katie.fielding@stroke.org.uk

• For the latest information changes to rail services between Bedwyn, Newbury and Paddington we recommend following the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group.

Local events and activities

For more information on events and activities across the Penny Post area, see the website calendar.

• Dates for the diary

Fri 17 June Live Music at the Green Dragon, The Green Dragon Pub, Marlborough Highstreet, from 8pm to 10:30pm.

Sat 18 June Aldbourne 5k Fun Run & Summer Fair, the Aldbourne Villiage Green, from 10am.

Wed 22 June Live Music from Nick Harper, Marlborough Town Hall, 7pm to 10:30pm.

Sat 25 June Ogbourne Primary Summer Fair, at Ogbourne Primary School, 12pm to 3pm.

Sat 2 July Family Fun Day, Marlborough Town Football Club, from 12pm to 4pm.

Sat 2 July Marlborough Orchestra Summer Concert, St Mary’s Church, 7:30pm.

Sun 3 Jul Great Bedwyn Fun Run, at Great Bedwyn C of E School, from 9:30am.

Sat 13 Aug Gig on the Green, Trusloe Cottages, 6pm.

• Regular events

• The Transition Marlborough Hub Group meet on the second Thursday of the month at 7.30pm currently by zoom. To get involved please email enquiries@transitionmarlborough.org.

• Marlborough Park Run is a free, weekly, timed five km walk, jog or run at 9am every Saturday. Open to all ages and abilities. Organised entirely by volunteers. Click here to see their Facebook page.

• Marlborough Floral Club meets 2pm on the first Thursday of the month at the Mildenhall Village Hall. For details please see here or call Micky Graham on 01672 514301.

The Menopause Matters Marlborough facebook group provides a forum for women in Marlborough and the surrounding areas to access information and support relating to menopause.

The White Horse Bookshop is offering workshops until the end of the year, click here for the full list.

News from your local councils

Note: “the most recent meeting” refers to the most recent one for which minutes (in some cases draft) or some other summary is available. Other meetings may have taken place since. Some councils publish minutes more promptly than do others.

• The most recent full meeting of Marlborough Town Council took place on 23 May and you can read the minutes here. The meeting was, however, adjourned early as it was not quorate. The most recent completed meeting was on 11 April and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: a report from the police; tenancy problems at York Place; two length-of-service awards; a councillor vacancy; a statement from Forestry England (see also sections above); the Christchurch Methodist Church and Church Hall; the Salisbury Road Recreation Ground workshop; corporate identity; Swindon 105.5; the climate emergency working party; the jubilee; financial matters; and committee reports. (The meeting lasted three hours and six minutes: not a record, but quite impressive.) There was also an extraordinary meeting on 16 May to conduct formal business; and the annual council meeting on 9 May which was mainly concerned with the Mayor-making ceremony.  To see the dates and agendas for future Town Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for the latest on Marlborough’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Aldbourne Parish Council took place on 1 June and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: parking; street lights; verges; damaged railings; financial matters; the parish’s virtual paths; repairs and maintenance issues; wildflowers; repairs to the SIDs; and the Parish Steward. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for more information on Aldbourne’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Great Bedwyn Parish Council took place on 12 May and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included; condolences following the death of Councillor Jenny Clack; the co-option of a new member; dog mess; parking on pavements; an alleged case of vexatious complaints; actions from the previous meeting; speeding; grants made by the Council; formal matters; parish maintenance; planning matters; and financial matters. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. There was also an extraordinary meeting on 28 February, the minutes of which you can read here, to vote on the contractor to install the memorial bench at Spaines.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council took place on 23 March and you can read the minutes here. You can also click here to read the minutes of the AGM held on 23 May: this included the Chair’s address in which referred that the parish was “emerging through the dark embrace of the Covid cloud.”

• The most recent meeting of Ramsbury & Axford Parish Council took place on 21 March and you can read the minutes here. To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St George Parish Council took place on 10 March and you can read the minutes here. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• Click here for a list of current consultations being run by Wiltshire Council.

• Marlborough area council contacts

Parishes: Marlborough Town CouncilAldbourne Parish CouncilRamsbury & Axford Parish Council, Great Bedwyn Parish Council, Savernake Parish CouncilOgbourne St George Parish Council and Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council.

Wiltshire Council: click here to visit the website.

News from other areas

Penny Post area – please see the following separate sections: Hungerford area; Lambourn ValleyNewbury area; Thatcham area; Compton & DownlandsTheale area; Wantage area; Swindon area.

News and views from across the area and beyond: please see the most recent Weekly News with Brian column.

Thursday 9 June 2022

See below for a look back at local jubilee celebrations, our usual round-up of local news, local events and activities and news from your local councils.

This week’s news

• Many congratulations to everyone involved in organising the numerous jubilee events across the district. All the ones that we attended or have heard about were hugely successful. A particular vote of thanks goes to whoever was in charge of the weather: the forecast for much of the weekend was depressingly dire but generally seems to have relented at the last moment. You can click here to see our look back at some of the celebrations across the area. If there are any you would like to see included, please email penny@pennypost.org.uk and include a link to the relevant website or FB page.

•  The Friends of Marlborough St Mary’s are holding a coffee morning fundraiser on Wednesday 15 June, between 9am and 11:30am at Rick Steins, on the High Street. They are asking for a voluntary donation of around £5, of which all proceeds will go towards the St Mary’s Primary School. For more information please email friends.msm@yahoo.com.

• The North Wessex Downs Walking Festival kicks off this Saturday 11 June offering 28 walks across the length and breadth of the stunning North Wessex Downs. There is something for everyone, from family friendly and wheelchair accessible guided walks to 9 mile hikes. See here for how to book your walks.

• This weekend is the Rainscomb Country Show, hosted by the Wiltshire Vehicle and Machinery Club. On Saturday 11 and 12 Sunday June, at Rainscomb Park, from 9am to 5pm. There will be all kinds of vehicles, including tractors, vintage and classic cars, local good and produce as well as dog agility courses and so much more. For more information read their Facebook post or email: wiltsvme@outlook.com.

• Did you know Marlborough own Council runs a small grant scheme for local projects? Community or charity projects can fill out an application, which will be considered by the Council at their Finance & Policy Committee Meetings which happen every few months. The next meeting will be on the 5 July, apply by 21 June for consideration at that meeting. The following meeting will be in October. For more information about how to apply for the grant, visit the Town Council’s website.

• 4 year old ‘Super’ Stan who lives in Marlborough has an extremely rare genetic condition. His family are asking for support towards the specialised treatment he needs to be able to walk and talk. If you can help, please click here.

• Interested in a career in wildlife conservation? Wiltshire Wildlife Trust currently have several vacancies open, including a Conservationist Traineeship, Education Support Worker role, as well as several other positions. They also have various volunteering opportunities. If you would be interested in working with them or learning more about their work, visit their website.

Marlborough Town Football Club will be holding a free Family Fun day, with lots of fun activities to participate in, as well as a Youth Football Tournament on Saturday 2 July, between 12pm and 4pm.

Click here for the latest news from the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group about the continuing threat to direct rail services from Bedwyn, Hungerford and Kintbury to London. The struggle is far from over.

• As we mentioned last week, Wiltshire Council has been awarded £1.2m of Department for Transport (DfT) funding to launch an improved flexible, on-demand bus service in the Pewsey Vale area – and wants to hear from people on what the new service should look like. The area it will cover takes in much of Pewsey Vale; from the eastern edge of Devizes, north to Beckhampton and Marlborough, and east to Collingbourne Ducis, Shalbourne and Froxfield, including Pewsey, Burbage, Great Bedwyn and Everleigh. This rural service would provide links to Devizes, Ludgershall and Tidworth, so people can take bus services to other towns. The survey runs until Friday 15 July, and people can have their say and find out more, including a map of the service area, please click here. Many thanks to the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group for bringing this to our attention.

English teaching volunteers wanted to help Ukrainian refugees adjust to life in the UK. If you would be comfortable teaching English online, as a volunteer, Nastia would love to hear from you. She is looking for people who can teach at beginner, intermediate and advanced levels. Please contact her at: nikasling@gmail.com.

Marlborough Fire Station is currently looking for new on-call recruits, ideally those who live or work within 5 minutes of the station. On-call firefighters are paid but they are not based at the station like full-time firefighters. They can have other jobs and commitments, only responding to emergencies when their alert goes off. Anyone is welcome to apply, so long as they are over 18 and have a good standard of physical fitness. If you or anyone you know would be interested, follow this link to the Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue to find out more and fill out and application.

• A reminder that Marlborough Town Council is appealing to dog owners to keep dogs on leads in Coopers Meadow to help protect the local wildlife. The nesting season runs between 1 Mar and 31 July and there are currently lots of swan families with young babies. Please help protect our local wildlife, by making sure your dog is leashed until nesting season is over.

Trains from Bedwyn

As mentioned previously, earlier this year, GWR made the deeply unwelcome announcement that most of the rail services from Berwyn, Hungerford and Kittbury would, from May, require a change at Newbury and/or at Reading, in some cases nearly doubling the journey times. The excellent local rail lobbyists, the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group, has been spearheading the opposition to this, as summarised in this separate post. It has achieved some small victories but recognises that more needs to be done.

We once again urge anyone who has even an occasional need to use the local rail services to sign up to receive the BTPG’s newsletters. As well as being a useful source of information, the more members it has the more more its voice will be strengthened in the ongoing discussions with GWR.

Community notices

Marlborough Community Fridge, located in the Community Room in the George/Figgins Lane Car Park (just behind the public loos) is open 9am to 11am on Thursdays and Fridays and 9am to 12pm on Saturdays. The fridge is free to access, there are no criteria that have to be met and it is a good way to use up surplus food from supermarkets and businesses that would otherwise go to waste. Please see their facebook page for more details.

• Marlborough Town Council has exciting plans for Marlborough’s Festival of Flowers and Marlborough in Bloom, with an option Jubilee-theme, through June and July. Visit their website here to find out how you can get involved.

• Anyone in the Marlborough area wanting to host or support Ukrainian refugees are invited to join this Facebook page: Ukrainians and their sponsors in Marlborough and surrounding areas.

• Calling wildlife friendly gardeners in Aldbourne: if you would like to open your garden for Carbon Neutral Aldbourne’s Open Gardens on Sunday 26 June please email carbonneutralaldbourne@gmail.com. From minimal effort, hands-off gardens to high-maintenance showstoppers they want to show how beautiful, diverse and satisfying wildlife gardens can be.

Wilton Windmill is now open to the public on Sundays and Bank Holidays, until the end of the season in September. Visitors are encouraged to bring their own picnics, hot and cold drinks, ice creams and cakes will be available in the shepherd’s hut. See more on the Wilton Windmill website here.

The Stroke Association runs monthly drop-in support sessions at The Jubilee Centre for stroke survivors, their families and carers on Monday mornings. See here for the next date. For more details contact Katie Fielding, from the Stroke Association on 07908 952740 or at katie.fielding@stroke.org.uk

• For the latest information changes to rail services between Bedwyn, Newbury and Paddington we recommend following the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group.

Local events and activities

For more information on events and activities across the Penny Post area, see the website calendar.

• Dates for the diary

Sat 11 & Sun 12 June Rainscomb Country Show, at Rainscomb Park, from 9am to 5pm.

Sun 12 June Savernake Family Fun Walk, Savernake, 10:30am.

Wed 15 June Fundraiser Coffee Morning, Rick Steins, Marlborough High Street, 9am to 11:30am.

Wed 22 June Live Music from Nick Harper, Marlborough Town Hall, 7pm to 10:30pm.

Sat 2 July Family Fun Day, Marlborough Town Football Club, from 12pm to 4pm.

Sat 2 July Marlborough Orchestra Summer Concert, St Mary’s Church, 7:30pm.

• Regular events

• The Transition Marlborough Hub Group meet on the second Thursday of the month at 7.30pm currently by zoom. To get involved please email enquiries@transitionmarlborough.org.

• Marlborough Park Run is a free, weekly, timed five km walk, jog or run at 9am every Saturday. Open to all ages and abilities. Organised entirely by volunteers. Click here to see their Facebook page.

• Marlborough Floral Club meets 2pm on the first Thursday of the month at the Mildenhall Village Hall. For details please see here or call Micky Graham on 01672 514301.

The Menopause Matters Marlborough facebook group provides a forum for women in Marlborough and the surrounding areas to access information and support relating to menopause.

The White Horse Bookshop is offering workshops until the end of the year, click here for the full list.

News from your local councils

Note: “the most recent meeting” refers to the most recent one for which minutes (in some cases draft) or some other summary is available. Other meetings may have taken place since. Some councils publish minutes more promptly than do others.

• The most recent full meeting of Marlborough Town Council took place on 23 May and you can read the minutes here. The meeting was, however, adjourned early as it was not quorate. The most recent completed meeting was on 11 April and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: a report from the police; tenancy problems at York Place; two length-of-service awards; a councillor vacancy; a statement from Forestry England (see also sections above); the Christchurch Methodist Church and Church Hall; the Salisbury Road Recreation Ground workshop; corporate identity; Swindon 105.5; the climate emergency working party; the jubilee; financial matters; and committee reports. (The meeting lasted three hours and six minutes: not a record, but quite impressive.) There was also an extraordinary meeting on 16 May to conduct formal business; and the annual council meeting on 9 May which was mainly concerned with the Mayor-making ceremony.  To see the dates and agendas for future Town Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for the latest on Marlborough’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Great Bedwyn Parish Council took place on 12 May and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included; condolences following the death of Councillor Jenny Clack; the co-option of a new member; dog mess; parking on pavements; an alleged case of vexatious complaints; actions from the previous meeting; speeding; grants made by the Council; formal matters; parish maintenance; planning matters; and financial matters. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. There was also an extraordinary meeting on 28 February, the minutes of which you can read here, to vote on the contractor to install the memorial bench at Spaines.

• The most recent meeting of Aldbourne Parish Council took place on 4 May and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the election of the Chair and Deputy; formal business; financial matters; planning matters; village responsibilities; committee reports; faulty speed indicator devices; verge cutting; street lights; a dropped kerb; the neighbourhood development plan roads and rights of way; a leaking pond; various other maintenance issues; traffic and speeding; and the wilding area. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for more information on Aldbourne’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council took place on 23 March and you can read the minutes here. You can also click here to read the minutes of the AGM held on 23 May: this included the Chair’s address in which referred that the parish was “emerging through the dark embrace of the Covid cloud.”

• The most recent meeting of Ramsbury & Axford Parish Council took place on 21 March and you can read the minutes here. To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St George Parish Council took place on 10 March and you can read the minutes here. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• Click here for a list of current consultations being run by Wiltshire Council.

• Marlborough area council contacts

Parishes: Marlborough Town CouncilAldbourne Parish CouncilRamsbury & Axford Parish Council, Great Bedwyn Parish Council, Savernake Parish CouncilOgbourne St George Parish Council and Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council.

Wiltshire Council: click here to visit the website.

News from other areas

Penny Post area – please see the following separate sections: Hungerford area; Lambourn ValleyNewbury area; Thatcham area; Compton & DownlandsTheale area; Wantage area; Swindon area.

News and views from across the area and beyond: please see the most recent Weekly News with Brian column.

Thursday 2 June 2022

This week we take a look back at some of the main stories in this area that we’ve covered in the last six months or so, many of which are still live and will be returned to in due course. We also have our usual round-up of local news, local events and activities (including jubilee-related ones) and news from your local councils.

This week’s news

• The BBC reports that there were 342 CV-19 cases in Wiltshire in the week 16 to 22  May, down 77 on the week before. This equates to 68 cases per 100,000. The average area in England had 71 (82 the week before). See also this map from Gov.uk which enables figures at a more local level to be obtained.

• The eagerly anticipated Jubilee Weekend is finally here. Click here for our guide to events across the area. Marlborough’s schedule includes: a High Street Party, Festival of Flags and Flowers at St Peters Church, ceremonial tree planting at Priory Gardens, Beacon lighting on the Common, Family afternoon tea at the Recreation ground, a Family Festival at The Parade, The Great Marlborough Bake-Off and a Royal Picnic on the Common. There are also more details regarding Jubilee plans on the Marlborough Town Council’s website.

• Speaking of the Jubilee, Preshute School’s 177-year-old bell is set to ring again just in time for the Jubilee after donations have been able to restore the bell to its former glory. See more here about the history and the time it’s set to ring.

• Great news for ladies looking to refresh their wardrobe for summerLuna Boutiques on Marlborough High Street is now open on Sundays from 10am to 4pm.

• Of course, with so many street parties happening this weekend, there will be some road closures. Luckily Wiltshire Council have made a comprehensive list on all the approved street closures, along with their date and times. If you are planning on travelling this weekend, check this list to make sure it doesn’t affect your  journey.

• Interested in a career in wildlife conservation? Wiltshire Wildlife Trust currently have several vacancies open, including a Conservationist Traineeship, Education Support Worker role, as well as several other positions. They also have various volunteering opportunities. If you would be interested in working with them or learning more about their work, visit their website.

Marlborough Town Football Club will be holding a free Family Fun day, with lots of fun activities to participate in, as well as a Youth Football Tournament. The event will be taking place on Saturday 2 July, between 12pm and 4pm.

Click here for the latest news from the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group about the continuing threat to direct rail services from Bedwyn, Hungerford and Kintbury to London. The struggle is far from over.

• As we mentionned last week, Wiltshire Council has been awarded £1.2m of Department for Transport (DfT) funding to launch an improved flexible, on-demand bus service in the Pewsey Vale area – and wants to hear from people on what the new service should look like. The area it will cover takes in much of Pewsey Vale; from the eastern edge of Devizes, north to Beckhampton and Marlborough, and east to Collingbourne Ducis, Shalbourne and Froxfield, including Pewsey, Burbage, Great Bedwyn and Everleigh. This rural service would provide links to Devizes, Ludgershall and Tidworth, so people can take bus services to other towns. The survey runs from Wednesday 25 May to Friday 15 July, and people can have their say and find out more, including a map of the service area, please click here. Many thanks to the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group for bringing this to our attention.

English teaching volunteers wanted to help Ukrainian refugees adjust to life in the UK. If you would be comfortable teaching English online, as a volunteer, Nastia would love to hear from you. She is looking for people who can teach at beginner, intermediate and advanced levels. Please contact her at: nikasling@gmail.com.

Marlborough Fire Station is currently looking for new on-call recruits, ideally those who live or work within 5 minutes of the station. On-call firefighters are paid but they are not based at the station like full-time firefighters. They can have other jobs and commitments, only responding to emergencies when their alert goes off. Anyone is welcome to apply, so long as they are over 18 and have a good standard of physical fitness. If you or anyone you know would be interested, follow this link to the Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue to find out more and fill out and application.

• A reminder that Marlborough Town Council is appealing to dog owners to keep dogs on leads in Coopers Meadow to help protect the local wildlife. The nesting season runs between 1 Mar and 31 July and there are currently lots of swan families with young babies. Please help protect our local wildlife, by making sure your dog is leashed until nesting season is over.

A look back…

See below for a brief summary of some of the recurring issues we’ve covered, often more than once, in the last six months or so. Many of these are still live and so will be returned to in the future. In all cases, you can see more by clicking on link to the archive section at the foot of this post (there’s also a further link at the foot of that to earlier columns) and then then searching for the relevant key word/s.

If there are any other matters that you think should be covered, or if you have any views or comments and the ones we’ve covered to date, please email brian@pennypost.org.uk

Access to the Savernake. There have recently been some proposals by the trustees to restrict vehicle access to all or part of the ancient first, discussions in which Savernake Parish Council has become involved, most recently at its meeting on 26 May. “At the moment, everyone is continuing to explore the best way forward,” the Chairman told Penny Post shortly afterwards. “It’s unlikely that anything is going to be decided, still less implemented, in the near future. The Parish Council will continue to keep a close eye on developments.” As will we: as soon as there is any further news we’ll pass it on.

Rail services. Earlier this year, GWR made the deeply unwelcome announcement that most of the rail services from Berwyn, Hungerford and Kittbury would, from May, require a change at Newbury and/or at Reading, in some cases nearly doubling the journey times. The excellent local rail lobbyists, the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group, has been spearheading the opposition to this, as summarised in this separate post. It has achieved some small victories but recognises that more needs to be done. We urge anyone who has even an occasional need to use the local rail services to sign up to receive the BTPG’s newsletters. As well as being a useful source of information, the more members it has the more more its voice will be strengthened in the ongoing discussions with GWR.

Community notices

• Would you like to be part of the next chapter in the future of The Merchant’s House Trust? The Trust was established 30 years ago to conserve and preserve the Grade II* listed home of Thomas Bayly, a silk merchant who built the house in 1656. Today the Trust is managed by a Board of Trustees, supported by an office-based team and volunteers. There are vacancies for new Trustees to join our Board. Please see here for details. Closing date is Monday 30 May.

Marlborough Community Fridge, located in the Community Room in the George/Figgins Lane Car Park (just behind the public loos) is open 9am to 11am on Thursdays and Fridays and 9am to 12pm on Saturdays. The fridge is free to access, there are no criteria that have to be met and it is a good way to use up surplus food from supermarkets and businesses that would otherwise go to waste. Please see their facebook page for more details.

• Marlborough Town Council has exciting plans for Marlborough’s Festival of Flowers and Marlborough in Bloom, with an option Jubilee-theme, through June and July. Visit their website here to find out how you can get involved.

• Anyone in the Marlborough area wanting to host or support Ukrainian refugees are invited to join this Facebook page: Ukrainians and their sponsors in Marlborough and surrounding areas.

• Calling wildlife friendly gardeners in Aldbourne: if you would like to open your garden for Carbon Neutral Aldbourne’s Open Gardens on Sunday 26 June please email carbonneutralaldbourne@gmail.com. From minimal effort, hands-off gardens to high-maintenance showstoppers they want to show how beautiful, diverse and satisfying wildlife gardens can be.

Wilton Windmill is now open to the public on Sundays and Bank Holidays, until the end of the season in September. Visitors are encouraged to bring their own picnics, hot and cold drinks, ice creams and cakes will be available in the shepherd’s hut. See more on the Wilton Windmill website here.

The Stroke Association runs monthly drop-in support sessions at The Jubilee Centre for stroke survivors, their families and carers on Monday mornings. See here for the next date. For more details contact Katie Fielding, from the Stroke Association on 07908 952740 or at katie.fielding@stroke.org.uk

• For the latest information changes to rail services between Bedwyn, Newbury and Paddington we recommend following the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group.

Local events and activities

For more information on events and activities across the Penny Post area, see the website calendar.

• Dates for the diary

Thu 2 June Jubilee Street Party, High Street 2pm to 5pm.

Fri 3 June Family Afternoon Tea Party, Marlborough Recreation Ground, 3:30pm.

Sat 4 June Family Festival, at The Parade, 12pm.

Sat 4 June Classic Car Parade, Marlborough High Street, 10:30am to 2pm.

• Sat 4 June Summer Ball hosted by Marlborough Rugby Club, on the Common, from 7pm.

Sun 5 June Jubilee Bake-Off, Marlborough Town Hall, 2pm-4pm.

Sun 5 June Royal Platinum Picnic, Marlborough Common, 2pm-10pm.

Sun 5 June Manton Jubilee Street Party, Bridge Street Manton, 2pm-7pm.

• Regular events

• The Transition Marlborough Hub Group meet on the second Thursday of the month at 7.30pm currently by zoom. To get involved please email enquiries@transitionmarlborough.org.

• Marlborough Park Run is a free, weekly, timed five km walk, jog or run at 9am every Saturday. Open to all ages and abilities. Organised entirely by volunteers. Click here to see their Facebook page.

• Marlborough Floral Club meets 2pm on the first Thursday of the month at the Mildenhall Village Hall. For details please see here or call Micky Graham on 01672 514301.

The Menopause Matters Marlborougfacebook group provides a forum for women in Marlborough and the surrounding areas to access information and support relating to menopause.

The White Horse Bookshop is offering workshops until the end of the year, click here for the full list.

News from your local councils

Note: “the most recent meeting” refers to the most recent one for which minutes (in some cases draft) or some other summary is available. Other meetings may have taken place since. Some councils publish minutes more promptly than do others.

• The most recent full meeting of Marlborough Town Council took place on 23 May and you can read the minutes here. The meeting was, however, adjourned early as it was not quorate. The most recent completed meeting was on 11 April and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: a report from the police; tenancy problems at York Place; two length-of-service awards; a councillor vacancy; a statement from Forestry England (see also sections above); the Christchurch Methodist Church and Church Hall; the Salisbury Road Recreation Ground workshop; corporate identity; Swindon 105.5; the climate emergency working party; the jubilee; financial matters; and committee reports. (The meeting lasted three hours and six minutes: not a record, but quite impressive.) There was also an extraordinary meeting on 16 May to conduct formal business; and the annual council meeting on 9 May which was mainly concerned with the Mayor-making ceremony.  To see the dates and agendas for future Town Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for the latest on Marlborough’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Great Bedwyn Parish Council took place on 12 May and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included; condolences following the death of Councillor Jenny Clack; the co-option of a new member; dog mess; parking on pavements; an alleged case of vexatious complaints; actions from the previous meeting; speeding; grants made by the Council; formal matters; parish maintenance; planning matters; and financial matters. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. There was also an extraordinary meeting on 28 February, the minutes of which you can read here, to vote on the contractor to install the memorial bench at Spaines.

• The most recent meeting of Aldbourne Parish Council took place on 4 May and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the election of the Chair and Deputy; formal business; financial matters; planning matters; village responsibilities; committee reports; faulty speed indicator devices; verge cutting; street lights; a dropped kerb; the neighbourhood development plan roads and rights of way; a leaking pond; various other maintenance issues; traffic and speeding; and the wilding area. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for more information on Aldbourne’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council took place on 23 March and you can read the minutes here.

• The most recent meeting of Ramsbury & Axford Parish Council took place on 21 March and you can read the minutes here. To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St George Parish Council took place on 10 March and you can read the minutes here. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• Click here for a list of current consultations being run by Wiltshire Council.

• Marlborough area council contacts

Parishes: Marlborough Town CouncilAldbourne Parish CouncilRamsbury & Axford Parish Council, Great Bedwyn Parish Council, Savernake Parish CouncilOgbourne St George Parish Council and Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council.

Wiltshire Council: click here to visit the website.

News from other areas

Penny Post area – please see the following separate sections: Hungerford area; Lambourn ValleyNewbury area; Thatcham area; Compton & DownlandsTheale area; Wantage area; Swindon area.

News and views from across the area and beyond: please see the most recent Weekly News with Brian column.

Thursday 26 May 2022

This week we consider the plans to restrict access to the Savernake Forest and talk to the Chair of the local Parish Council  after a recent meeting at which this long-running issue was discussed. We also cover Wiltshire council’s plans  to introduce flexible bus services, the continued campaign by the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group to reverse GWR’s draconian cuts to services beyond Newbury, local jubilee celebrations and an appeal for local firefighters.

Scroll down for these and other new stories, local events and activities and news from your local councils.

This week’s news

• The BBC reports that there were 419 CV-19 cases in Wiltshire in the week 9 to 15 May, down 175 from the week before. This equates to 83 cases per 100,000. The average area in England had 83 (108 last week). Note that, as of 26 May, these were the most recently available figures. See also this map from Gov.uk which enables figures at a more local level to be obtained.

• You may be aware that there will be some celebrations taking place between 2 and 5 June. Click here for our guide to jubilee events across the area.

• The photo gallery for Mayor Making from the Annual Town Council meeting on 9 May have been published and it’s worth noting if you are featured you can get a digital copy here.

Click here for the latest news from the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group about the continuing threat to direct rail services from Bedwyn, Hungerford and Kintbury to London. The struggle is far from over.

• Good news here as Merchant House will re-open soon after being closed since March. A survey had revealed that the historic building had slight movements and shifts in some areas. Since that inspection, the necessary repairs have been installed and the House is set to be open again by mid-June. If you’re interested in finding out more, you can see it here on the Town Council’s website.

English teaching volunteers wanted to help Ukrainian refugees adjust to life in the UK. If you would be comfortable teaching English online, as a volunteer, Nastia would love to hear from you. She is looking for people who can teach at beginner, intermediate and advanced levels. Please contact her at: nikasling@gmail.com.

• For more details of the Jubilee plans please visit Marlborough Town Council’s website. The current schedule includes: a High Street Party, Festival of Flags and Flowers at St Peters Church, ceremonial tree planting at Priory Gardens, Beacon lighting on the Common, Family afternoon tea at the Recreation ground, a Family Festival at The Parade, The Great Marlborough Bake-Off and a Royal Picnic on the Common.

• Speaking of the Jubilee, Preshute School’s 177-year-old bell is set to ring again just in time for the Jubilee after donations have been able to restore the bell to its former glory. See more here about the history and the time it’s set to ring.

• Keep your eyes on the skies on Thursday 2 June for the spectacular military flyby in celebration of the Jubilee. Over 70 aircraft will be participating, including the Red Arrows, Spitfires and Hurricanes, taking off in the east of the country, flying over Buckingham Palace, London and then heading the South and West. If all goes according to plan, we should see the aircraft overhead roughly between 12:50pm and 1:30pm – so keep your eyes peeled. More information can be found here.

Marlborough Fire Station is currently looking for new on-call recruits, ideally those who live or work within 5 minutes of the station. On-call firefighters are paid but they are not based at the station like full-time firefighters. They can have other jobs and commitments, only responding to emergencies when their alert goes off. Anyone is welcome to apply, so long as they are over 18 and have a good standard of physical fitness. If you or anyone you know would be interested, follow this link to the Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue to find out more and fill out and application.

• A reminder that Marlborough Town Council is appealing to dog owners to keep dogs on leads in Coopers Meadow to help protect the local wildlife. The nesting season runs between 1 Mar and 31 July and there are currently lots of swan families with young babies. Please help protect our local wildlife, by making sure your dog is leashed until nesting season is over.

Access to the Savernake

Savernake Forest is much-loved place and used by more people than those that live in the parish of that name. Uncertainty has recently been hanging over the woodland as the trustees have recently announced their intention to close some of the roads. The Parish Council invited all the interested participants along to its May meeting and you can read more about this in this report in Marlborough News. The author states that while the questions and the answers didn’t offer a great deal “in terms of future direction or likely immediate action. But the structure of ownership and responsibility did become clear as this has largely dominated debate in recent months.”

I had a brief conversation with Guy Singleton, the Chair of Savernake Parish Council, on 26 May. “The Marlborough News article is a good and fair summary of what took place,” he told me. “In due course, our own minutes of the event will be published [and can be seen here]. I think it was very useful to get all the people involved, or statements from them, together in the same room. At the moment, everyone is continuing to explore the best way forward and it’s unlikely that anything is going to be decided, still less implemented, in the near future. The Parish Council will continue to keep a close eye on developments.”

“Savernake Forest, like any major and significant entity is a ‘living space’,” the Marlborough News article concluded. “It has to evolve as time moves forward and as such it will adapt. But if nothing else, this debate has opened the future of Savernake Forest to a far wider audience, and whilst Trustees, beneficiaries and Forest lessees manage this evolution, the community at large are also the very important stakeholders. They use and value Savernake Forest and as such must be heard, and not just by means of a ‘tick box’ consultation.”

Flexible buses

Wiltshire Council has been awarded £1.2m of Department for Transport (DfT) funding to launch an improved flexible, on-demand bus service in the Pewsey Vale area – and wants to hear from people on what the new service should look like.

Flexible, on-demand bus services do not run to a set timetable like usual buses. Instead, they enable people to phone or book a bus service via an app, to take them anywhere within the service area at a time to suit them. App users will be able to book their journey, see in real-time when the vehicle will arrive and make payment. For people who cannot or do not wish to use the app, telephone booking and on bus payment will also be available.

In the case of this new service, the area it will cover takes in much of Pewsey Vale; from the eastern edge of Devizes, north to Beckhampton and Marlborough, and east to Collingbourne Ducis, Shalbourne and Froxfield, including Pewsey, Burbage, Great Bedwyn and Everleigh. This rural service would provide links to Devizes, Ludgershall and Tidworth, so people can take bus services to other towns.

The survey runs from Wednesday 25 May to Friday 15 July, and people can have their say and find out more, including a map of the service area, please click here. Many thanks to the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group for bringing this to our attention.

Community notices

• Would you like to be part of the next chapter in the future of The Merchant’s House Trust? The Trust was established 30 years ago to conserve and preserve the Grade II* listed home of Thomas Bayly, a silk merchant who built the house in 1656. Today the Trust is managed by a Board of Trustees, supported by an office-based team and volunteers. There are vacancies for new Trustees to join our Board. Please see here for details. Closing date is Monday 30 May.

Marlborough Community Fridge, located in the Community Room in the George/Figgins Lane Car Park (just behind the public loos) is open 9am to 11am on Thursdays and Fridays and 9am to 12pm on Saturdays. The fridge is free to access, there are no criteria that have to be met and it is a good way to use up surplus food from supermarkets and businesses that would otherwise go to waste. Please see their facebook page for more details.

• Marlborough Town Council has exciting plans for Marlborough’s Festival of Flowers and Marlborough in Bloom, with an option Jubilee-theme, through June and July. Visit their website here to find out how you can get involved.

• Anyone in the Marlborough area wanting to host or support Ukrainian refugees are invited to join this Facebook page: Ukrainians and their sponsors in Marlborough and surrounding areas.

• Calling wildlife friendly gardeners in Aldbourne: if you would like to open your garden for Carbon Neutral Aldbourne’s Open Gardens on Sunday 26 June please email carbonneutralaldbourne@gmail.com. From minimal effort, hands-off gardens to high-maintenance showstoppers they want to show how beautiful, diverse and satisfying wildlife gardens can be.

Wilton Windmill is now open to the public on Sundays and Bank Holidays, until the end of the season in September. Visitors are encouraged to bring their own picnics, hot and cold drinks, ice creams and cakes will be available in the shepherd’s hut. See more on the Wilton Windmill website here.

The Stroke Association runs monthly drop-in support sessions at The Jubilee Centre for stroke survivors, their families and carers on Monday mornings. See here for the next date. For more details contact Katie Fielding, from the Stroke Association on 07908 952740 or at katie.fielding@stroke.org.uk

• For the latest information changes to rail services between Bedwyn, Newbury and Paddington we recommend following the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group.

Local events and activities

For more information on events and activities across the Penny Post area, see the website calendar.

• Dates for the diary

• Tue 31 May Queen Victoria’s Fashion the Assembly Room, Marlborough Town Hall, from 1.45pm.

Thu 2 June Jubilee Street Party, High Street 2pm to 5pm.

• Sat 4 June Summer Ball hosted by Marlborough Rugby Club, on the Common, from 7pm.

• Regular events

• The Transition Marlborough Hub Group meet on the second Thursday of the month at 7.30pm currently by zoom. To get involved please email enquiries@transitionmarlborough.org.

• Marlborough Park Run is a free, weekly, timed five km walk, jog or run at 9am every Saturday. Open to all ages and abilities. Organised entirely by volunteers. Click here to see their Facebook page.

• Marlborough Floral Club meets 2pm on the first Thursday of the month at the Mildenhall Village Hall. For details please see here or call Micky Graham on 01672 514301.

The Menopause Matters Marlborougfacebook group provides a forum for women in Marlborough and the surrounding areas to access information and support relating to menopause.

The White Horse Bookshop is offering workshops until the end of the year, click here for the full list.

News from your local councils

Note: “the most recent meeting” refers to the most recent one for which minutes (in some cases draft) or some other summary is available. Other meetings may have taken place since. Some councils publish minutes more promptly than do others.

• The most recent full meeting of Marlborough Town Council took place on 23 May and you can read the minutes here. The meeting was, however, adjourned early as it was not quorate. The most recent completed meeting was on 11 April and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: a report from the police; tenancy problems at York Place; two length-of-service awards; a councillor vacancy; a statement from Forestry England (see also sections above); the Christchurch Methodist Church and Church Hall; the Salisbury Road Recreation Ground workshop; corporate identity; Swindon 105.5; the climate emergency working party; the jubilee; financial matters; and committee reports. (The meeting lasted three hours and six minutes: not a record, but quite impressive.) There was also an extraordinary meeting on 16 May to conduct formal business; and the annual council meeting on 9 May which was mainly concerned with the Mayor-making ceremony.  To see the dates and agendas for future Town Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for the latest on Marlborough’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Great Bedwyn Parish Council took place on 12 May and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included; condolences following the death of Councillor Jenny Clack; the co-option of a new member; dog mess; parking on pavements; an alleged case of vexatious complaints; actions from the previous meeting; speeding; grants made by the Council; formal matters; parish maintenance; planning matters; and financial matters. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. There was also an extraordinary meeting on 28 February, the minutes of which you can read here, to vote on the contractor to install the memorial bench at Spaines.

• The most recent meeting of Aldbourne Parish Council took place on 4 May and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the election of the Chair and Deputy; formal business; financial matters; planning matters; village responsibilities; committee reports; faulty speed indicator devices; verge cutting; street lights; a dropped kerb; the neighbourhood development plan roads and rights of way; a leaking pond; various other maintenance issues; traffic and speeding; and the wilding area. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for more information on Aldbourne’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council took place on 23 March and you can read the minutes here.

• The most recent meeting of Ramsbury & Axford Parish Council took place on 21 March and you can read the minutes here. To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St George Parish Council took place on 10 March and you can read the minutes here. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• Click here for a list of current consultations being run by Wiltshire Council.

• Marlborough area council contacts

Parishes: Marlborough Town CouncilAldbourne Parish CouncilRamsbury & Axford Parish Council, Great Bedwyn Parish Council, Savernake Parish CouncilOgbourne St George Parish Council and Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council.

Wiltshire Council: click here to visit the website.

News from other areas

Penny Post area – please see the following separate sections: Hungerford area; Lambourn ValleyNewbury area; Thatcham area; Compton & DownlandsTheale area; Wantage area; Swindon area.

News and views from across the area and beyond: please see the most recent Weekly News with Brian column.

Thursday 19 May 2022

Scroll down for local events and activities and news from your local councils.

This week’s news

• The BBC reports that there were 419 CV-19 cases in Wiltshire in the week 9 to 15 May, down 175 from the week before. This equates to 83 cases per 100,000. The average area in England had 83 (108 last week). See also this map from Gov.uk which enables figures at a more local level to be obtained.

 This weekend Marlborough’s 2nd Scout Group will be hosting a charity fun run this Saturday 21 May on Marlborough Common to raise money for their Scout Hut. The Hut requires essential refurbishment work, repairing the floors, disabled bathroom and insulatiion. The run will be from 8am and there will be refreshments available. Everyone is welcome to join in and if you cannot attend but would still like to make a donation you can do so here.

• English teaching volunteers wanted to help Ukrainian refugees adjust to life in the UK. If you would be comfortable teaching English online, as a volunteer, Nastia would love to hear from you. She is looking for people who can teach at beginner, intermediate and advanced levels. Please contact her at: nikasling@gmail.com.

• If you own your own home, or have permission from your landlord to install solar panels, you can register for the group-buying Solar Together scheme for discounted solar panels and batteries for Wiltshire and Swindon residents. Small and medium-sized enterprises (non-domestic) and Commonhold Associations meeting this requirement can participate as well. It is free to register by 14 June and there is no obligation to go ahead with an installation. For more details see here.

The Marlborough Literature Festival has announced its key authors for this autumn’s event. This line-up includes multi-award winning children’s author Jaqueline Wilson, perhaps best known for her book The Story of Tracy Beaker. She will be giving writing tips, as well as talking abo9ut her new book The Fairy Project. Joining her will also be novelist Patrick Gale, discussing his lasted book Mother’s Boy, inspired by the life of Cornish poet Charles Causley, and local historian Max Hastings, who will be promoting his upcoming book about the Cuban Missile Crisis. For more information about these events and how to get tickets visit the Marlborough Lit Festival website.

• For more details of the Jubilee plans please visit Marlborough Town Council’s website. The current schedule includes: a High Street Party, Festival of Flags and Flowers at St Peters Church, ceremonial tree planting at Priory Gardens, Beacon lighting on the Common, Family afternoon tea at the Recreation ground, a Family Festival at The Parade, The Great Marlborough Bake-Off and a Royal Picnic on the Common.

• Keep your eyes on the skies on Thursday 2 June for the spectacular military flyby in celebration of the Jubilee. Over 70 aircraft will be participating, including the Red Arrows, Spitfires and Hurricanes, taking off in the east of the country, flying over Buckingham Palace, London and then heading the South and West. If all goes according to plan, we should see the aircraft overhead roughly between 12:50pm and 1:30pm – so keep your eyes peeled. More information can be found here.

Marlborough Fire Station is currently looking for new on-call recruits, ideally those who live or work within 5 minutes of the station. On-call firefighters are paid but they are not based at the station like full-time firefighters. They can have other jobs and commitments, only responding to emergencies when their alert goes off. Anyone is welcome to apply, so long as they are over 18 and have a good standard of physical fitness. If you or anyone you know would be interested, follow this link to the Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue to find out more and fill out and application.

• The lovely Aldbourne Café and Deli in the heart of the village has a vacancy for a part-time Commis Chef. Prior experience is essential but training will be provided. The position would suit someone who wants to learn from a top London chef and to acquire new skills and techniques.  There is also an opportunity for a waitress/barista.

• A reminder that Marlborough Town Council is appealing to dog owners to keep dogs on leads in Coopers Meadow to help protect the local wildlife. The nesting season runs between 1 Mar and 31 July and there are currently lots of swan families with young babies. Please help protect protect our local wildlife, by making sure your dog is leashed until nesting season is over.

Community notices

 The next bunting workshop will be this Friday 20 May from 10am to 2pm.  Everyone is invited, sewing skills and machines are a bonus, all other materials are provided. For more information, please contact charris@marlborough-tc.gov.uk.

• Would you like to be part of the next chapter in the future of The Merchant’s House Trust? The Trust was established 30 years ago to conserve and preserve the Grade II* listed home of Thomas Bayly, a silk merchant who built the house in 1656. Today the Trust is managed by a Board of Trustees, supported by an office-based team and volunteers. There are vacancies for new Trustees to join our Board. Please see here for details. Closing date is Monday 30 May.

Marlborough Community Fridge, located in the Community Room in the George/Figgins Lane Car Park (just behind the public loos) is open 9am to 11am on Thursdays and Fridays and 9am to 12pm on Saturdays. The fridge is free to access, there are no criteria that have to be met and it is a good way to use up surplus food from supermarkets and businesses that would otherwise go to waste. Please see their facebook page for more details.

• Marlborough Town Council has exciting plans for Marlborough’s Festival of Flowers and Marlborough in Bloom, with an option Jubilee-theme, through June and July. Visit their website here to find out how you can get involved.

• Anyone in the Marlborough area wanting to host or support Ukrainian refugees are invited to join this Facebook page: Ukrainians and their sponsors in Marlborough and surrounding areas.

• Calling wildlife friendly gardeners in Aldbourne: if you would like to open your garden for Carbon Neutral Aldbourne’s Open Gardens on Sunday 26 June please email carbonneutralaldbourne@gmail.com. From minimal effort, hands-off gardens to high-maintenance showstoppers they want to show how beautiful, diverse and satisfying wildlife gardens can be.

Wilton Windmill is now open to the public on Sundays and Bank Holidays, until the end of the season in September. Visitors are encouraged to bring their own picnics, hot and cold drinks, ice creams and cakes will be available in the shepherd’s hut. See more on the Wilton Windmill website here.

The Stroke Association runs monthly drop-in support sessions at The Jubilee Centre for stroke survivors, their families and carers. The next one will be held 9 May from 10.30am to 11.30am. See here about future dates. Contact Katie Fielding, from the Stroke Association on 07908 952740 or at katie.fielding@stroke.org.uk

• Local runners might be tempted to sign up for the 20 mile Marlborough Downs Challenge through Avebury and beautiful landscape on Saturday 7 May. Sign up details are here.

• For the latest information changes to rail services between Bedwyn, Newbury and Paddington we recommend following the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group.

Local events and activities

For more information on events and activities across the Penny Post area, see the website calendar.

• Dates for the diary

• Fri 20 May Jubilee Bunting Workshop Town Hall, 10am-2pm.

• Tue 31 May Queen Victoria’s Fashion the Assembly Room, Marlborough Town Hall, from 1.45pm.

Thu 2 June Jubilee Street Party, High Street 2pm to 5pm.

• Sat 4 June Summer Ball hosted by Marlborough Rugby Club, on the Common, from 7pm.

• Regular events

• The Transition Marlborough Hub Group meet on the second Thursday of the month at 7.30pm currently by zoom. To get involved please email enquiries@transitionmarlborough.org.

• Marlborough Park Run is a free, weekly, timed five km walk, jog or run at 9am every Saturday. Open to all ages and abilities. Organised entirely by volunteers. Click here to see their Facebook page.

• Marlborough Floral Club meets 2pm on the first Thursday of the month at the Mildenhall Village Hall. For details please see here or call Micky Graham on 01672 514301.

The Menopause Matters Marlborougfacebook group provides a forum for women in Marlborough and the surrounding areas to access information and support relating to menopause.

The White Horse Bookshop is offering workshops until the end of the year, click here for the full list.

News from your local councils

Note: “the most recent meeting” refers to the most recent one for which minutes (in some cases draft) or some other summary is available. Other meetings may have taken place since. Some councils publish minutes more promptly than do others.

• The most recent full meeting of Marlborough Town Council took place on 11 April and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: a report from the police; tenancy problems at York Place; two length-of-service awards; a councillor vacancy; a statement from Forestry England (see also sections above); the Christchurch Methodist Church and Church Hall; the Salisbury Road Recreation Ground workshop; corporate identity; Swindon 105.5; the climate emergency working party; the jubilee; financial matters; and committee reports. (The meeting lasted three hours and six minutes: not a record, but quite impressive.) To see the dates and agendas for future Town Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for the latest on Marlborough’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Aldbourne Parish Council took place on 4 May and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the election of the Chair and Deputy; formal business; financial matters; planning matters; village responsibilities; committee reports; faulty speed indicator devices; verge cutting; street lights; a dropped kerb; the neighbourhood development plan roads and rights of way; a leaking pond; various other maintenance issues; traffic and speeding; and the wilding area. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for more information on Aldbourne’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council took place on 23 March and you can read the minutes here.

• The most recent meeting of Ramsbury & Axford Parish Council took place on 21 March and you can read the minutes here. To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Great Bedwyn Parish Council took place on 10 March and you can read the minutes here. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. There was also an extraordinary meeting on 28 February, the minutes of which you can read here, to vote on the contractor to install the memorial bench at Spaines.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St George Parish Council took place on 10 March and you can read the minutes here. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• Click here for a list of current consultations being run by Wiltshire Council.

• Marlborough area council contacts

Parishes: Marlborough Town CouncilAldbourne Parish CouncilRamsbury & Axford Parish Council, Great Bedwyn Parish CouncilOgbourne St George Parish Council and Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council.

Wiltshire Council: click here to visit the website.

News from other areas

Penny Post area – please see the following separate sections: Hungerford area; Lambourn ValleyNewbury area; Thatcham area; Compton & DownlandsTheale area; Wantage area; Swindon area.

News and views from across the area and beyond: please see the most recent Weekly News with Brian column.

Thursday 12 May 2022

This week’s news

• The BBC reports that there were 606 CV-19 cases in Wiltshire in the week 29 April to 5 May, down 195 from the week before. This equates to 120 cases per 100,000. The average area in England had 108 (123 last week). See also this map from Gov.uk which enables figures at a more local level to be obtained.

• Earlier this week, Cllr Lisa Farrell was sworn in as Marlborough’s 712th Mayor, in the first traditional Mayor Making ceremony since 2019. Lisa, who was also Marlborough’s mayor in 2018-19, also presented the Mayor’s Community Service Award to two local young people, Tia Campbell and Genevieve Hall, for their work at the local Youth Centre. The newly appointed Mayor told the audience, “My mayoral year is all about volunteers. They are a vital part of the community and without them so many charities would have to close. I want to thank them and do my best to support them. Each volunteer is a very special human being.” You can read more about this story here.

• If you are curious about EVs, pop along to Great Green Bedwyn’s Electric Vehicle discovery event on Sunday 15 May from 3pm in Great Bedwyn Village Hall.

 Last Friday’s Jubilee bunting workshop in Marlborough Town Hall saw a fantastic turn-out of volunteers busy with scissors, needles and machines. Wiltshire and Marlborough Councillor Jane Davies and Councillor Caroline Thomas worked alongside fellow volunteers on the bunting production-line which is aiming to make 500 metres of bunting to decorate the streets. The next bunting workshop will be on Friday 20 May from 10am to 2pm. Everyone is invited, sewing skills and machines are a bonus, all other materials are provided. For more information, please contact charris@marlborough-tc.gov.uk.

For more details of the Jubilee plans please visit Marlborough Town Council’s website. The current schedule includes: a High Street Party, Festival of Flags and Flowers at St Peters Church, ceremonial tree planting at Priory Gardens, Beacon lighting on the Common, Family afternoon tea at the Recreation ground, a Family Festival at The Parade, The Great Marlborough Bake-Off and a Royal Picnic on the Common.

Would you like to be part of the next chapter in the future of The Merchant’s House Trust? The Trust was established 30 years ago to conserve and preserve the Grade II* listed home of Thomas Bayly, a silk merchant who built the house in 1656. Today the Trust is managed by a Board of Trustees, supported by an office-based team and volunteers. There are vacancies for new Trustees to join our Board. Please see here for details.

Marlborough Fire Station is currently looking for new on-call recruits, ideally those who live or work within 5 minutes of the station. On-call firefighters are paid but they are not based at the station like full-time firefighters. They can have other jobs and commitments, only responding to emergencies when their alert goes off. Anyone is welcome to apply, so long as they are over 18 and have a good standard of physical fitness. If you or anyone you know would be interested, follow this link to the Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue to find out more and fill out and application.

• The lovely Aldbourne Café and Deli in the heart of the village has a vacancy for a part-time Commis Chef. Prior experience is essential but training will be provided. The position would suit someone who wants to learn from a top London chef and to acquire new skills and techniques.  There is also an opportunity for a waitress/barista.

• A reminder that Marlborough Town Council is appealing to dog owners to keep dogs on leads in Coopers Meadow to help protect the local wildlife. The nesting season runs between 1 Mar and 31 July and there are currently lots of swan families with young babies. Please help protect protect our local wildlife, by making sure your dog is leashed until nesting season is over.

Community notices

Marlborough Community Fridge, located in the Community Room in the George/Figgins Lane Car Park (just behind the public loos) is open 9am to 11am on Thursdays and Fridays and 9am to 12pm on Saturdays. The fridge is free to access, there are no criteria that have to be met and it is a good way to use up surplus food from supermarkets and businesses that would otherwise go to waste. Please see their facebook page for more details.

• Marlborough Town Council has exciting plans for Marlborough’s Festival of Flowers and Marlborough in Bloom, with an option Jubilee-theme, through June and July. Visit their website here to find out how you can get involved.

• Anyone in the Marlborough area wanting to host or support Ukrainian refugees are invited to join this Facebook page: Ukrainians and their sponsors in Marlborough and surrounding areas.

• Calling wildlife friendly gardeners in Aldbourne: if you would like to open your garden for Carbon Neutral Aldbourne’s Open Gardens on Sunday 26 June please email carbonneutralaldbourne@gmail.com. From minimal effort, hands-off gardens to high-maintenance showstoppers they want to show how beautiful, diverse and satisfying wildlife gardens can be.

Wilton Windmill is now open to the public on Sundays and Bank Holidays, until the end of the season in September. Visitors are encouraged to bring their own picnics, hot and cold drinks, ice creams and cakes will be available in the shepherd’s hut. See more on the Wilton Windmill website here.

The Stroke Association runs monthly drop-in support sessions at The Jubilee Centre for stroke survivors, their families and carers. The next one will be held 9 May from 10.30am to 11.30am. See here about future dates. Contact Katie Fielding, from the Stroke Association on 07908 952740 or at katie.fielding@stroke.org.uk

• Local runners might be tempted to sign up for the 20 mile Marlborough Downs Challenge through Avebury and beautiful landscape on Saturday 7 May. Sign up details are here.

• For the latest information changes to rail services between Bedwyn, Newbury and Paddington we recommend following the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group.

Local events and activities

For more information on events and activities across the Penny Post area, see the website calendar.

• Dates for the diary

• Fri 13 May Rugby Club Fundraiser Quiz at the Rugby Club, 7.30pm.

• Sun 15 May Electric Vehicle discovery event, Great Bedwyn Village Hall

• Fri 20 May Jubilee Bunting Workshop Town Hall, 10am-2pm.

• Tue 31 May Queen Victoria’s Fashion the Assembly Room, Marlborough Town Hall, from 1.45pm.

Thu 2 June Jubilee Street Party, High Street 2pm to 5pm.

• Sat 4 June Summer Ball hosted by Marlborough Rugby Club, on the Common, from 7pm.

• Regular events

• The Transition Marlborough Hub Group meet on the second Thursday of the month at 7.30pm currently by zoom. To get involved please email enquiries@transitionmarlborough.org.

• Marlborough Park Run is a free, weekly, timed five km walk, jog or run at 9am every Saturday. Open to all ages and abilities. Organised entirely by volunteers. Click here to see their Facebook page.

• Marlborough Floral Club meets 2pm on the first Thursday of the month at the Mildenhall Village Hall. For details please see here or call Micky Graham on 01672 514301.

The Menopause Matters Marlborougfacebook group provides a forum for women in Marlborough and the surrounding areas to access information and support relating to menopause.

The White Horse Bookshop is offering workshops until the end of the year, click here for the full list.

News from your local councils

Note: “the most recent meeting” refers to the most recent one for which minutes (in some cases draft) or some other summary is available. Other meetings may have taken place since. Some councils publish minutes more promptly than do others.

• The most recent full meeting of Marlborough Town Council took place on 11 April and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: a report from the police; tenancy problems at York Place; two length-of-service awards; a councillor vacancy; a statement from Forestry England (see also sections above); the Christchurch Methodist Church and Church Hall; the Salisbury Road Recreation Ground workshop; corporate identity; Swindon 105.5; the climate emergency working party; the jubilee; financial matters; and committee reports. (The meeting lasted three hours and six minutes: not a record, but quite impressive.) To see the dates and agendas for future Town Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for the latest on Marlborough’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Aldbourne Parish Council took place on 6 April and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: repairing the SIDs; street lights; verge cutting and re-wilding; South Street path repairs; ash trees; the Operation Nightingale dig; donations; the jubilee; parking; repairs and maintenance around the parish; Palmer’s Field; a report from District Councillor James Sheppard; congratulations to Aldbourne’s band; and signage. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for more information on Aldbourne’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Ramsbury & Axford Parish Council took place on 21 March and you can read the minutes here. To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Great Bedwyn Parish Council took place on 10 March and you can read the minutes here. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. There was also an extraordinary meeting on 28 February, the minutes of which you can read here, to vote on the contractor to install the memorial bench at Spaines.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St George Parish Council took place on 10 January and you can read the minutes here. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council took place on 8 November and you can read the minutes here.

• Click here for a list of current consultations being run by Wiltshire Council.

• Marlborough area council contacts

Parishes: Marlborough Town CouncilAldbourne Parish CouncilRamsbury & Axford Parish Council, Great Bedwyn Parish CouncilOgbourne St George Parish Council and Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council.

Wiltshire Council: click here to visit the website.

News from other areas

Penny Post area – please see the following separate sections: Hungerford area; Lambourn ValleyNewbury area; Thatcham area; Compton & DownlandsTheale area; Wantage area; Swindon area.

News and views from across the area and beyond: please see the most recent Weekly News with Brian column.

Thursday 5 May 2022

This week’s news

• The BBC reports that there were 697 CV-19 cases in Wiltshire in the week 24 to 30 April, down 456 from the week before. This equates to 138 cases per 100,000. The average area in England had 123 (200 last week). See also this map from Gov.uk which enables figures at a more local level to be obtained.

• Quick reminder that Marlborough Community Fridge, located in the Community Room in the George/Figgins Lane Car Park (just behind the public loos) is open 9am to 11am on Thursdays and Fridays and 9am to 12noon on Saturdays. This week they have oranges, pears, parsnips, cabbages, chard, bread, GF bread and bagels ready for their forever homes. The fridge is free to access, there are no criteria that have to be met and it is a good way to use up surplus food from supermarkets and businesses that would otherwise go to waste. Please see their facebook page for more details.

• Get your running shoes on, because this weekend is the Ramsbury five-mile run. It’ll start from the Ramsbury Recreation Centre at 11am, Sunday 8 May. See here for more details, entre online.

Sewing skills wanted! If you’re nimble with a needle, perhaps consider lending your talents towards preparations for the Jubilee celebrations. Marlborough Council wants to make 500 metres of bunting to decorate the streets. There will be workshops running at the Town Hall on Friday 6 and 20 May, from 10am to 2pm, with materials provided. Everyone is invited, sewing skills and machines are a bonus. For more information please contact charris@marlborough-tc.gov.uk.

For more details of the Jubilee plans please visit Marlborough Town Council’s website. The current schedule includes: a High Street Party, Festival of Flags and Flowers at St Peters Church, ceremonial tree planting at Priory Gardens, Beacon lighting on the Common, Family afternoon tea at the Recreation ground, a Family Festival at The Parade, The Great Marlborough Bake-Off and a Royal Picnic on the Common.

• It’s that time of year where beautiful bluebells are lining our woodland trails. Take to opportunity to get outside and appreciate our wonderful natural world, before the flowering season ends. You can read our article here to find out where your nearest bluebell walk is.

• In addition, Marlborough Town Council has exciting plans for Marlborough’s Festival of Flowers and Marlborough in Bloom, with an option Jubilee-theme, through June and July. Visit their website here to find out how you can get involved.

Ukrainian refugees are starting to arrive in our area. Anyone in the Marlborough area wanting to host or support Ukrainian refugees are invited to join this Facebook page: Ukrainians and their sponsors in Marlborough and surrounding areas.

• The Great Green Bedwyn project, funded by the National Lottery and supported by the Parish Council, is for everyone with an interest in taking action on climate change in Great Bedwyn. The aim is to bring people together to come up with a climate action plan for the village. To get involved please join their facebook group. They have an Electric Vehicle discovery event planned for 15 May.

• A reminder that Marlborough Town Council is appealing to dog owners to keep dogs on leads in Coopers Meadow to help protect the local wildlife. The nesting season runs between 1 Mar and 31 July and there are currently lots of swan families with young babies. Please help protect protect our local wildlife, by making sure your dog is leashed until nesting season is over.

Community notices

• Calling wildlife friendly gardeners in Aldbourne: if you would like to open your garden for Carbon Neutral Aldbourne’s Open Gardens on Sunday 26 June please email carbonneutralaldbourne@gmail.com. From minimal effort, hands-off gardens to high-maintenance showstoppers they want to show how beautiful, diverse and satisfying wildlife gardens can be.

Wilton Windmill is now open to the public on Sundays and Bank Holidays, until the end of the season in September. Visitors are encouraged to bring their own picnics, hot and cold drinks, ice creams and cakes will be available in the shepherd’s hut. See more on the Wilton Windmill website here.

The Stroke Association runs monthly drop-in support sessions at The Jubilee Centre for stroke survivors, their families and carers. The next one will be held 9 May from 10.30am to 11.30am. See here about future dates. Contact Katie Fielding, from the Stroke Association on 07908 952740 or at katie.fielding@stroke.org.uk

• Local runners might be tempted to sign up for the 20 mile Marlborough Downs Challenge through Avebury and beautiful landscape on Saturday 7 May. Sign up details are here.

• For the latest information changes to rail services between Bedwyn, Newbury and Paddington we recommend following the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group.

Local events and activities

For more information on events and activities across the Penny Post area, see the website calendar.

• Dates for the diary

• Fri 6 May Jubilee Bunting Workshop Town Hall, 10am to 2pm.

• Sun 8 May Ramsbury 5 Mile Run Ramsbury Recreation Centre, 11am.

• Fri 13 May Rugby Club Fundraiser Quiz at the Rugby Club, 7.30pm.

• Fri 20 May Jubilee Bunting Workshop Town Hall, 10am-2pm.

• Tue 31 May Queen Victoria’s Fashion the Assembly Room, Marlborough Town Hall, from 1.45pm.

Thu 2 June Jubilee Street Party, High Street 2pm to 5pm.

• Sat 4 June Summer Ball hosted by Marlborough Rugby Club, on the Common, from 7pm.

• Regular events

• The Transition Marlborough Hub Group meet on the second Thursday of the month at 7.30pm currently by zoom. To get involved please email enquiries@transitionmarlborough.org.

• Marlborough Park Run is a free, weekly, timed five km walk, jog or run at 9am every Saturday. Open to all ages and abilities. Organised entirely by volunteers. Click here to see their Facebook page.

• Marlborough Floral Club meets 2pm on the first Thursday of the month at the Mildenhall Village Hall. For details please see here or call Micky Graham on 01672 514301.

The Menopause Matters Marlborougfacebook group provides a forum for women in Marlborough and the surrounding areas to access information and support relating to menopause.

The White Horse Bookshop is offering workshops until the end of the year, click here for the full list.

News from your local councils

Note: “the most recent meeting” refers to the most recent one for which minutes (in some cases draft) or some other summary is available. Other meetings may have taken place since. Some councils publish minutes more promptly than do others.

• The most recent full meeting of Marlborough Town Council took place on 11 April and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: a report from the police; tenancy problems at York Place; two length-of-service awards; a councillor vacancy; a statement from Forestry England (see also sections above); the Christchurch Methodist Church and Church Hall; the Salisbury Road Recreation Ground workshop; corporate identity; Swindon 105.5; the climate emergency working party; the jubilee; financial matters; and committee reports. (The meeting lasted three hours and six minutes: not a record, but quite impressive.) To see the dates and agendas for future Town Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for the latest on Marlborough’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Aldbourne Parish Council took place on 6 April and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: repairing the SIDs; street lights; verge cutting and re-wilding; South Street path repairs; ash trees; the Operation Nightingale dig; donations; the jubilee; parking; repairs and maintenance around the parish; Palmer’s Field; a report from District Councillor James Sheppard; congratulations to Aldbourne’s band; and signage. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for more information on Aldbourne’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Ramsbury & Axford Parish Council took place on 21 March and you can read the minutes here. To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Great Bedwyn Parish Council took place on 10 March and you can read the minutes here. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. There was also an extraordinary meeting on 28 February, the minutes of which you can read here, to vote on the contractor to install the memorial bench at Spaines.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St George Parish Council took place on 10 January and you can read the minutes here. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council took place on 8 November and you can read the minutes here.

• Click here for a list of current consultations being run by Wiltshire Council.

• Marlborough area council contacts

Parishes: Marlborough Town CouncilAldbourne Parish CouncilRamsbury & Axford Parish Council, Great Bedwyn Parish CouncilOgbourne St George Parish Council and Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council.

Wiltshire Council: click here to visit the website.

News from other areas

Penny Post area – please see the following separate sections: Hungerford area; Lambourn ValleyNewbury area; Thatcham area; Compton & DownlandsTheale area; Wantage area; Swindon area.

News and views from across the area and beyond: please see the most recent Weekly News with Brian column.

Thursday 28 April 2022

This week’s news

• The BBC reports that there were 1,152 CV-19 cases in Wiltshire in the week 17 to 23 April, down 658 from the week before. This equates to 229 cases per 100,000. The average area in England had 200 (305 last week). See also this map from Gov.uk which enables figures at a more local level to be obtained.

• The zero waste Packaging Not Included shop in Hughenden Yard, where you can refill groceries in your own containers, is pleased to announce that they have acheived bronze/silver Carbon Neutral Now status. Their scope 1 & 2 emissions (direct emissions & indirect emissions from purchased energy) and scope 3 emissions (indirect emissions such as staff commuting & waste disposal) totalled 3 tonnes of carbon last year, which is 0.016kg CO2e/£ turnover.  This is very low for a business with the average carbon intensity in retail being 0.07kg CO2e/£ turnover. PNI owner Hayley Lambert has offset their 3 tonnes of CO2e with Gold Standard carbon credits investing in a biodigester project in Cambodia with positive community as well as climate impact. She is happy to answer questions for any other business looking to reduce their emissions. Please email her at hayley@packagingnotincluded.co.uk

• With the Jubilee now being just over a month away, preparations for the celebrations are currently underway. While the complete list of events and activities are still to be confirmed, Marlborough Town Council have released a list of all the exciting things planned so far. The current roster includes: a High Street Party, Festival of Flags and Flowers at St Peters Church, ceremonial tree planting at Priory Gardens, Beacon lighting on the Common, Family afternoon tea at the Recreation ground, a Family Festival at The Parade, The Great Marlborough Bake-Off and a Royal Picnic on the Common. All this as well as so much more to be announce. For more detail on these events and to keep an eye out for further updates, visit the Marlborough Town Council website.

Marlborough Rugby Club will be hosting a quiz fundraiser to go towards the fees of their junior festival. Tickets will cost £10 and include a meal. For more information see their Facebook post and or email  events@mrfc.co.uk to secure your place.

Ukrainian refugees are starting to arrive in our area. Anyone in the Marlborough area wanting to host or support Ukrainian refugees are invited to join this Facebook page: Ukrainians and their sponsors in Marlborough and surrounding areas.

• Marlborough Town Council has exciting plans for Marlborough’s Festival of Flowers and other Jubilee celebrations. Visit their website here to find out how you can get involved.

• The Carbon Neutral Aldbourne group is running an Open Gardens event in June to showcase wildlife friendly gardens. From minimal effort, hands-off gardens to high-maintenance showstoppers they want to show how beautiful, diverse and satisfying wildlife gardens can be.
If you would like to open your garden on Sunday 26 June please email carbonneutralaldbourne@gmail.com.

• The Great Green Bedwyn project, funded by the National Lottery and supported by the Parish Council, is for everyone with an interest in taking action on climate change in Great Bedwyn. The aim is to bring people together to come up with a climate action plan for the village. To get involved please join their facebook group. They have an Electric Vehicle discovery event planned for 15 May.

Crofton Beam Engines are in steam this Bank Holiday Weekend on Sunday 1 and Monday 2 May. See details here.

• The Ramsbury 5 mile run is coming up on Sunday 8 May. See here for more details.

•  Wilton Windmill has now re-opened to the public on Sundays and Bank Holidays. Visitors are encouraged to bring their own picnics, hot and cold drinks, ice creams and cakes will be available in the shepherd’s hut. See more on the Wilton Windmill website here.

• A reminder that Marlborough Town Council is appealing to dog owners to keep dogs on leads in Coopers Meadow to help protect the local wildlife. The nesting season runs between 1 Mar and 31 July and there are currently lots of swan families with young babies. Please help protect protect our local wildlife, by making sure your dog is leashed until nesting season is over.

• Aldbourne Community Garden welcomes volunteers are welcome every other Saturday afternoon; the next session will be Saturday 7 May. For more details and directions to the garden please see here.

Objection v refusal

My eye was caught by this article in Marlborough News about the planning application for the Poulton Mill Equine Clinic which appears to have had what the writer describes as “yo-yo” progress through this part of the planning system, having been looked at by Marlborough’s planning committee three times with different results. As it appears that on each occasion this was because new information came to light, it seems to me that this is exactly what should happen and proves that the system is working properly, or at least as well as it can. This can happen: an application in our village of East Garston was recently re-visited by the parish council when fresh material was produced, as a result of which it changed its stance.

One point that is worth stressing about the article, however, is that it several times refers to Marlborough Town Council having “refused” or “approved” the application. This the town council cannot do as it is not a planning authority: only, in that area, Wiltshire County Council (or, if matters get that far, the Planning Inspector or the Secretary of State) can do that. A town or parish council is merely one of the statutory consultees. They can object to an application, offer no objection or, if they’re really keen on it, support it. They can, if they choose also decline to comment. They can’t, however, decide anything about it, merely offer their view. The planning authority may come to a completely different conclusion.

It’s important for local residents to understand which organisation makes planning decisions. There’s no point in giving Marlborough TC a hard time when an application goes a different way from how you wished: they didn’t decide it. The town or parish may have offered reasons for or against an application with which some people may disagree. They will be looking at each case on its merits in objective planning, not subjective, terms and are obliged to point out aspects which may, for instance, offend a particular policy. They will also understand, and should express, how the proposal might be affected by, or might itself affect, hyper-local circumstances of which the planning authority might be unaware. All of these points will be considered by the officers or the committee making the call.

When the decision notice is issued, it’ll have Wiltshire CC’s logo and the top and thumbprint at the bottom, not Marlborough TC’s. Sometimes the Town Council might be as annoyed, or perhaps as baffled, by the decision as you are. All MTC could have done in the matter was to have expressed its views and those of its residents. That done, it’s out of their hands.

Community notices

The Stroke Association runs monthly drop-in support sessions at The Jubilee Centre for stroke survivors, their families and carers. The next one will be held 9 May from 10.30am to 11.30am. See here about future dates. Contact Katie Fielding, from the Stroke Association on 07908 952740 or at katie.fielding@stroke.org.uk

• Local runners might be tempted to sign up for the 20 mile Marlborough Downs Challenge through Avebury and beautiful landscape on Saturday 7 May. Sign up details are here.

• For the latest information changes to rail services between Bedwyn, Newbury and Paddington we recommend following the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group.

Local events and activities

For more information on events and activities across the Penny Post area, see the website calendar.

• Dates for the diary

• Sun 1 May Car Boot Sale on Marlborough Common, proceeds to go to Wiltshire Air Ambulance. Starts from 8am.

• Fri 13 May Rugby Club Fundraiser Quiz at the Rugby Club, 7:30pm.

• Tue 31 May Queen Victoria’s Fashion the Assembly Room, Marlborough Town Hall, from 1:45pm.

• Sat 4 June Summer Ball hosted by Marlborough Rugby Club, on the Common, from 7pm.

• Regular events

• The Transition Marlborough Hub Group meet on the second Thursday of the month at 7.30pm currently by zoom. To get involved please email enquiries@transitionmarlborough.org.

• Marlborough Park Run is a free, weekly, timed five km walk, jog or run at 9am every Saturday. Open to all ages and abilities. Organised entirely by volunteers. Click here to see their Facebook page.

• Marlborough Floral Club meets 2pm on the first Thursday of the month at the Mildenhall Village Hall. For details please see here or call Micky Graham on 01672 514301.

The Menopause Matters Marlborougfacebook group provides a forum for women in Marlborough and the surrounding areas to access information and support relating to menopause.

The White Horse Bookshop is offering workshops until the end of the year, click here for the full list.

News from your local councils

Note: “the most recent meeting” refers to the most recent one for which minutes (in some cases draft) or some other summary is available. Other meetings may have taken place since. Some councils publish minutes more promptly than do others.

• The most recent full meeting of Marlborough Town Council took place on 11 April and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: a report from the police; tenancy problems at York Place; two length-of-service awards; a councillor vacancy; a statement from Forestry England (see also sections above); the Christchurch Methodist Church and Church Hall; the Salisbury Road Recreation Ground workshop; corporate identity; Swindon 105.5; the climate emergency working party; the jubilee; financial matters; and committee reports. (The meeting lasted three hours and six minutes: not a record, but quite impressive.) To see the dates and agendas for future Town Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for the latest on Marlborough’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Aldbourne Parish Council took place on 6 April and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: repairing the SIDs; street lights; verge cutting and re-wilding; South Street path repairs; ash trees; the Operation Nightingale dig; donations; the jubilee; parking; repairs and maintenance around the parish; Palmer’s Field; a report from District Councillor James Sheppard; congratulations to Aldbourne’s band; and signage. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for more information on Aldbourne’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Ramsbury & Axford Parish Council took place on 21 March and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: a farewell to Councillor Simon Smith; straightening out a confusion about the reason for a speed survey; street lights; collections for Ukraine; clay pigeon shooting; planning matters; financial matters; rights of way; play areas; the assurance, which echoes those in many previous minutes, that “all is well in Axford” – it must be a truly wonderful place to live; the parish website; community transport; the jubilee; village maintenance; the parish stewards; the school; and the observation that “Stickers are put up round the village ‘Free the beagles’.” I’m not clear if this is a PC initiative that it wishes to celebrate, something that it’s condemning or merely an observation. To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Great Bedwyn Parish Council took place on 10 March and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the continuing need for a councillor; actions from the previous meeting; the complaints policy; risk assessments; a grant to the surgery; financial matters; response to an AONB survey; the Green Great Bedwyn project; a proposed apple tree; traffic and speeding; planning matters; and future action points. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. There was also an extraordinary meeting on 28 February, the minutes of which you can read here, to vote on the contractor to install the memorial bench at Spaines.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St George Parish Council took place on 10 January and you can read the minutes here. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council took place on 8 November and you can read the minutes here.

• Click here for a list of current consultations being run by Wiltshire Council.

• Marlborough area council contacts

Parishes: Marlborough Town CouncilAldbourne Parish CouncilRamsbury & Axford Parish Council, Great Bedwyn Parish CouncilOgbourne St George Parish Council and Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council.

Wiltshire Council: click here to visit the website.

News from other areas

Penny Post area – please see the following separate sections: Hungerford area; Lambourn ValleyNewbury area; Thatcham area; Compton & DownlandsTheale area; Wantage area; Swindon area.

News and views from across the area and beyond: please see the most recent Weekly News with Brian column.

Thursday 21 April 2022

This week’s news

• The BBC reports that there were 1,805 CV-19 cases in Wiltshire in the week 10 to 16 April, down 910 from the week before. This equates to 358 cases per 100,000. The average area in England had 358 (446 last week). See also this map from Gov.uk which enables figures at a more local level to be obtained.

• Last chance to have your say on Savernake Forest’ s Our Shared Forest land management plan, which describes how they propose to manage and protect Savernake Forest, as well as the needs of the public who enjoy the area. You can read the full Our Shared Forest plan here, as well as take the survey here. The deadline for survey responses is thi Friday 22 April.

• There are just a few more days to enjoy the last sprinkles of Easter-y magic at Avebury Manor Garden Easter Trail, running until 24 April. Meanwhile, over at the Old Farmyard Barn, there are Easter-themed craft activities for children. For more information check out the National Trust Website.

• Massive congratulations to the Phoenix Brass Band, whose fundraising concert for Ukraine on Sunday 10 April raised an incredible £2,000. Not only did the players delight the people of Marlborough with an afternoon of splendid music – with this being their first concert since the pandemic. For more about this poignant event please see here.

• Anyone in the Marlborough area wanting to host or support Ukrainian refugees are invited to join this facebook page: Ukrainians and their sponsors in Marlborough and surrounding areas.

• Marlborough Town Council have just exciting announced plans for Marlborough’s Festival of Flowers and other Jubilee celebrations. Visit their website here to find out how you can get involved.

Crofton Beam Engine‘s boiler passed its Steam Test with flying colours earlier this month, so the site is now open for weekend visits over the spring and summer season. There are also plans for upcoming steaming days next month, 1, 2,28 & 29 May. See details here

•  Wilton Windmill has now re-opened to the public on Sundays and Bank Holidays. Visitors are encouraged to bring their own picnics, hot and cold drinks, ice creams and cakes will be available in the shepherd’s hut. See more on the Wilton Windmill website here.

• A reminder that Marlborough Town Council is appealing to dog owners to keep dogs on leads in Coopers Meadow to help protect the local wildlife. The nesting season runs between 1 Mar and 31 July and there are currently lots of swan families with young babies. Sadly there was a recent incident involving an unleashed dog attacking and killing a cygnet in the area. Please help protect protect our local wildlife, by making sure your dog is leashed until nesting season is over.

• The lovely Aldbourne Cafe and Post Office has a vacancy for a Commis Chef who wants to learn from a top London chef and to acquire new skills and techniques and a waitstaff/barrista that could be a stepping stone for a move into a café management role.

• Aldbourne Community Garden is looking good and invites the community to visit this Saturday 23 April from 2 to 4pm to help with various gardening jobs. Volunteers are welcome every other Saturday afternoon so the next session will be Saturday 7 May. For more details and directions to the garden please see here.

Green Machine’s gong

Congratulations to Green Machine Computers which has, as reported here in Marlborough News, “won a national award for their ‘Commitment to the Community’. They were presented with the award from The Great British Business Awards (run by Great British Expos) on Thursday April 7 at a ceremony in Reading.” As well as specialising in recycling IT kit, the results being provided at low cost to charities and community groups, the company has also been much involved in a number of donations, including to local children during lockdown when it became clear that many families had insufficient devices for the sudden onset of online classes. I can also testify that they fixed a desktop Mac of mine a few years ago whre others had despaired and it gave me several more years of service.

As the article goes on to say, “If you have any unwanted IT equipment and want to put it towards a good cause, you can drop off donations Mon-Fri 9-5 to Green Machine’s offices in Ramsbury, or to one of their secure donation points across Wiltshire, Oxfordshire and Berkshire.” See Green Machine’s website for more information.

Community notices

The Stroke Association runs monthly drop-in support sessions at The Jubilee Centre for stroke survivors, their families and carers. The next one will be held 9 May from 10.30am to 11.30am. See here about future dates. Contact Katie Fielding, from the Stroke Association on 07908 952740 or at katie.fielding@stroke.org.uk

• Local runners might be tempted to sign up for the 20 mile Marlborough Downs Challenge through Avebury and beautiful landscape on Saturday 7 May. Sign up details are here.

• For the latest information changes to rail services between Bedwyn, Newbury and Paddington we recommend following the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group.

Local events and activities

For more information on events and activities across the Penny Post area, see the website calendar.

• Dates for the diary

• Sun 24 Apr Jazz at The Merchants House at St Peters Church, Marlborough High Street, from 2pm.

• Sun 1 May Car Boot Sale on Marlborough Common, proceeds to go to Wiltshire Air Ambulance. Starts from 8am.

• Tue 31 May Queen Victoria’s Fashion the Assembly Room, Marlborough Town Hall, from 1:45pm.

• Sat 4 June Summer Ball hosted by Marlborough Rugby Club, on the Common, from 7pm.

• Regular events

• The Transition Marlborough Hub Group meet on the second Thursday of the month at 7.30pm currently by zoom. To get involved please email enquiries@transitionmarlborough.org.

• Marlborough Park Run is a free, weekly, timed five km walk, jog or run at 9am every Saturday. Open to all ages and abilities. Organised entirely by volunteers. Click here to see their Facebook page.

• Marlborough Floral Club meets 2pm on the first Thursday of the month at the Mildenhall Village Hall. For details please see here or call Micky Graham on 01672 514301.

The Menopause Matters Marlborougfacebook group provides a forum for women in Marlborough and the surrounding areas to access information and support relating to menopause.

• Marlborough Choral Society rehearses on Monday evenings, at Christchurch between 7.30pm and 9.15pm. For more information and where to sign up, please visit www.marlboroughchoralsociety.org.uk.

The White Horse Bookshop is offering workshops until the end of the year, click here for the full list.

News from your local councils

Note: “the most recent meeting” refers to the most recent one for which minutes (in some cases draft) or some other summary is available. Other meetings may have taken place since. Some councils publish minutes more promptly than do others.

• The most recent full meeting of Marlborough Town Council took place on 11 April and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: a report from the police; tenancy problems at York Place; two length-of-service awards; a councillor vacancy; a statement from Forestry England (see also sections above); the Christchurch Methodist Church and Church Hall; the Salisbury Road Recreation Ground workshop; corporate identity; Swindon 105.5; the climate emergency working party; the jubilee; financial matters; and committee reports. (The meeting lasted three hours and six minutes: not a record, but quite impressive.) To see the dates and agendas for future Town Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for the latest on Marlborough’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Aldbourne Parish Council took place on 6 April and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: repairing the SIDs; street lights; verge cutting and re-wilding; South Street path repairs; ash trees; the Operation Nightingale dig; donations; the jubilee; parking; repairs and maintenance around the parish; Palmer’s Field; a report from District Councillor James Sheppard; congratulations to Aldbourne’s band; and signage. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for more information on Aldbourne’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Ramsbury & Axford Parish Council took place on 21 March and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: a farewell to Councillor Simon Smith; straightening out a confusion about the reason for a speed survey; street lights; collections for Ukraine; clay pigeon shooting; planning matters; financial matters; rights of way; play areas; the assurance, which echoes those in many previous minutes, that “all is well in Axford” – it must be a truly wonderful place to live; the parish website; community transport; the jubilee; village maintenance; the parish stewards; the school; and the observation that “Stickers are put up round the village ‘Free the beagles’.” I’m not clear if this is a PC initiative that it wishes to celebrate, something that it’s condemning or merely an observation. To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Great Bedwyn Parish Council took place on 10 March and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the continuing need for a councillor; actions from the previous meeting; the complaints policy; risk assessments; a grant to the surgery; financial matters; response to an AONB survey; the Green Great Bedwyn project; a proposed apple tree; traffic and speeding; planning matters; and future action points. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. There was also an extraordinary meeting on 28 February, the minutes of which you can read here, to vote on the contractor to install the memorial bench at Spaines.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St George Parish Council took place on 10 January and you can read the minutes here. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council took place on 8 November and you can read the minutes here.

• Click here for a list of current consultations being run by Wiltshire Council.

• Marlborough area council contacts

Parishes: Marlborough Town CouncilAldbourne Parish CouncilRamsbury & Axford Parish Council, Great Bedwyn Parish CouncilOgbourne St George Parish Council and Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council.

Wiltshire Council: click here to visit the website.

News from other areas

Penny Post area – please see the following separate sections: Hungerford area; Lambourn ValleyNewbury area; Thatcham area; Compton & DownlandsTheale area; Wantage area; Swindon area.

News and views from across the area and beyond: please see the most recent Weekly News with Brian column.

 

Thursday 14 April 2022

This week’s news

• The BBC reports that there were 2.706 CV-19 cases in Wiltshire in the week 3 to 9 April, down 1,721 from the week before. This equates to 537 cases per 100,000. The average area in England had 446 (712 last week). See also this map from Gov.uk which enables figures at a more local level to be obtained.

• Thanks to ‘an extraordinary level of interest’, Savernake Forest has extended the deadline of their survey regarding the proposed Our Shared Forest land management plan. The plan describes how they propose to manage and protect Savernake Forest, as well as the needs of the public who enjoy the area. It focuses around the ‘six key pillars’ of: trees and woodlands, wildlife and wild spaces, geology and soils, water, cultural and built heritage, community and recreation. You can read the full Our Shared Forest plan here, as well as take the survey here. The new deadline for survey responses will be the 22 April. See also the separate section on this below.

• At the meeting of Aldbourne Parish Council on 6 April, District Councillor James Sheppard said that Wiltshire CC has recently calculated its five-year land supply and has established that there is currently only a 4.72-year supply. The significance of that is that if a developer can demonstrate that the planning authority cannot demonstrate it has an adequate supply, it is much more likely to win any refusal of planning permission on appeal, even if this is of a kind and in a location that the planning authority doesn’t like. He also told the meeting that “the housing supply will be recalculated again, and it is hoped this will take the Wiltshire supply to over five years. Wiltshire Council is lobbying central government to update the rules around the need for a five-year housing supply.” Other planning authorities will be watching the result of this with interest.

• Anyone in the Marlborough area wanting to host or support Ukrainian refugees are invited to join this facebook page: Ukrainians and their sponsors in Marlborough and surrounding areas.

Crofton Beam Engine‘s boiler passed its Steam Test with flying colours earlier this month so the site is all set to open this coming Easter weekend with steaming on Sunday 17 and Monday 18 April and static viewing on Saturday 16 April.
The plan going forward is to open every weekend during the season, with steaming dates at least once a month. See details here for the steaming days planned for 1, 2,28 & 29 May.

• From Easter, the Wilton Windmill will be re-opening to the public, until September on Sundays and Bank Holidays. This will be the first time the windmill has re-opened in two years. Visitors are encouraged to bring their own picnics, hot and cold drinks, ice creams and cakes will be available in the shepherd’s hut. See more on the Wilton Windmill website here.

 Marlborough Town Council is busy putting together a programme of all the local events which will be held in celebration of the jubilee, on the weekend of 2 to 5 June. If you are planning a public event which you would like to be included in the programme, then please contact Assistant Town Clerk, Clare Harris at charris@marlborough-tc.gov.uk by the deadline of 22 April.

Avebury Manor Garden has an Easter Trail filled with little tasks and challenges with a chocolatey-prize at the end, running until 24 April. Meanwhile, over at the Old Farmyard Barn, there are Easter-themed craft activities for children. For more information check out the National Trust Website.

Marlborough Town Council is appealing to dog owners to keep dogs on leads in Coopers Meadow to help protect the local wildlife. The nesting season runs between 1 Mar and 31 July and there are currently lots of swan families with young babies. Sadly there was a recent incident involving an unleashed dog attacking and killing a cygnet in the area. Please help protect protect our local wildlife, by making sure your dog is leashed until nesting season is over.

Marlborough Youth Football Club are looking for new under 18 players to join the team. Whether for fun, fitness or stress relief, open sessions will be coming up in the next few weeks, so why not come along and give it a try? If interested, please contact club chair, Stuart Slater at chair@myfc.me.uk.

• Last weekend, Phoenix Brass performed a concert for Ukraine in Marlborough Town Hall with all funds raised going to the DEC Ukraine appeal: a wonderful way to spend a Sunday afternoon. XXXXX

• The lovely Aldbourne Cafe and Post Office has a vacancy for a Commis Chef who wants to learn from a top London chef and to acquire new skills and techniques and a waitstaff/barrista that could be a stepping stone for a move into a café management role.

• The Hungerford Nursery School has some spaces for September and welcomes young children from Marlborough. As it does not have a specific catchment area, the nursery school is looking to share its Ofsted Outstanding provision with the wider community. Click here for more information.

Forestry England and the Savernake

At the full meeting of Marlborough Town Council on 11 April, the Mayor read out a statement from Rob Cullen of Forestry England (FE) received in response to what FE believed to be misleading information that had been levelled against them. FE had also offered to come and make a presentation to the Council at an agreed time in the near future and, following that, to invite Councillors to a guided tour of the forest and discuss openly any areas of concern. The statement is reproduced verbatim below.

“Since 1939, Forestry England has managed Savernake Forest under a forestry purposes lease from the Savernake Estate, delivering world-class forestry certified by the Forest Stewardship Council via the UK Woodland Assurance Scheme. Now – nearly 100 years since that lease began – society is facing a climate emergency and biodiversity crisis that are putting Savernake Forest under pressure unlike anything it has faced in its long history. In response, Forestry England has published the Our Shared Forest Land Management Plan. This was developed in consultation with members of the public and expert stakeholders to set the framework for how we will manage, protect, and enhance this nationally important forest – and balance the needs of the people who love and enjoy it, with the needs of the natural environment. In due course, Our Shared Forest will guide and inform more detailed plans that will specify our management activity over the short- and medium-term. Our Shared Forest has been available for public comment since last month.

“Since Our Shared Forest was published, there have been many reports misrepresenting an internal discussion document called ‘A Way Forward’, which was prepared at the request of our landlord, the Savernake Estate. This paper makes no formal proposals for the Forest. It was drafted in response to concerns raised by the Estate regarding the impact of public access, particularly in light of growing visitor numbers since the start of the COVID pandemic. The document explores potential ways we might work to deliver some of our management commitments within Our Shared Forest. A number of our aspirations for a sustainable and resilient Savernake can only be achieved with Estate consent, so early discussion between tenant and landlord is essential. Public access within Savernake Forest has always been with the agreement of the Estate. Any changes to public access can only happen with the consent of the Estate trustees. This internal document has been extensively quoted out of context so we have published it in full on our website so that the community may read it themselves.

“We recognise and appreciate the great depth of affection felt for Savernake Forest. In response to the extraordinary level of interest in Our Shared Forest, we have extended our feedback survey until 22 April to ensure as many people as possible are able to review the information and have their say.”

See the minutes of the above-mentioned Marlborough TC meeting for a report on the discussion that followed. The conclusion of this was the approval of a motion that “the Town Council strongly objects to any existing or possible proposals the Forestry Commission may have or make to ban all vehicular access to the forest except for Postern Hill car park, and to extend this car park to accommodate 300 vehicles and to introduce a parking charge. Further to write to the Forestry Commission to express the Town Council’s objections for the reasons set out in Councillor Thomas’s proposal.”

Community notices

The Stroke Association is hosting monthly drop-in sessions at The Jubilee Centre. Stroke survivors, their families and carers can pop in to find out abut available support. The next one will be held 9 May, between 10.30 am and 11.30 am. You can take a look at the Council’s website to find out about future dates. To find out more, you can also contact Katie Fielding, the the Stroke Association on 07908 952740 or at katie.fielding@stroke.org.uk

• Local runners might be tempted to sign up for the 20 mile Marlborough Downs Challenge through Avebury and beautiful landscape on Saturday 7 May. Sign up details are here.

• For the latest information changes to rail services between Bedwyn, Newbury and Paddington we recommend following the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group.

Local events and activities

For more information on events and activities across the Penny Post area, see the website calendar.

• Dates for the diary

• St 16 – Mon 18 Apr Crofton Beam Engines

• Sun 17 Apr Burbage Tractor Run starting and ending Choppers Café on a circuit through several villages.

• Sun 24 Apr Jazz at The Merchants House at St Peters Church, Marlborough High Street, from 2pm.

• Sun 1 May Car Boot Sale on Marlborough Common, proceeds to go to Wiltshire Air Ambulance. Starts from 8am.

• Tue 31 May Queen Victoria’s Fashion the Assembly Room, Marlborough Town Hall, from 1:45pm.

• Sat 4 June Summer Ball hosted by Marlborough Rugby Club, on the Common, from 7pm.

• Regular events

• The Transition Marlborough Hub Group meet on the second Thursday of the month at 7.30pm currently by zoom. To get involved please email enquiries@transitionmarlborough.org.

• Marlborough Park Run is a free, weekly, timed five km walk, jog or run at 9am every Saturday. Open to all ages and abilities. Organised entirely by volunteers. Click here to see their Facebook page.

• Marlborough Floral Club meets 2pm on the first Thursday of the month at the Mildenhall Village Hall. For details please see here or call Micky Graham on 01672 514301.

The Menopause Matters Marlborougfacebook group provides a forum for women in Marlborough and the surrounding areas to access information and support relating to menopause.

• Marlborough Choral Society rehearses on Monday evenings, at Christchurch between 7.30pm and 9.15pm. For more information and where to sign up, please visit www.marlboroughchoralsociety.org.uk.

The White Horse Bookshop is offering workshops until the end of the year, click here for the full list.

News from your local councils

Note: “the most recent meeting” refers to the most recent one for which minutes (in some cases draft) or some other summary is available. Other meetings may have taken place since. Some councils publish minutes more promptly than do others.

• The most recent full meeting of Marlborough Town Council took place on 11 April and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: a report from the police; tenancy problems at York Place; two length-of-service awards; a councillor vacancy; a statement from Forestry England (see also sections above); the Christchurch Methodist Church and Church Hall; the Salisbury Road Recreation Ground workshop; corporate identity; Swindon 105.5; the climate emergency working party; the jubilee; financial matters; and committee reports. (The meeting lasted three hours and six minutes: not a record, but quite impressive.) To see the dates and agendas for future Town Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for the latest on Marlborough’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Aldbourne Parish Council took place on 6 April and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: repairing the SIDs; street lights; verge cutting and re-wilding; South Street path repairs; ash trees; the Operation Nightingale dig; donations; the jubilee; parking; repairs and maintenance around the parish; Palmer’s Field; a report from District Councillor James Sheppard; congratulations to Aldbourne’s band; and signage. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for more information on Aldbourne’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Ramsbury & Axford Parish Council took place on 21 March and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: a farewell to Councillor Simon Smith; straightening out a confusion about the reason for a speed survey; street lights; collections for Ukraine; clay pigeon shooting; planning matters; financial matters; rights of way; play areas; the assurance, which echoes those in many previous minutes, that “all is well in Axford” – it must be a truly wonderful place to live; the parish website; community transport; the jubilee; village maintenance; the parish stewards; the school; and the observation that “Stickers are put up round the village ‘Free the beagles’.” I’m not clear if this is a PC initiative that it wishes to celebrate, something that it’s condemning or merely an observation. To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Great Bedwyn Parish Council took place on 10 March and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the continuing need for a councillor; actions from the previous meeting; the complaints policy; risk assessments; a grant to the surgery; financial matters; response to an AONB survey; the Green Great Bedwyn project; a proposed apple tree; traffic and speeding; planning matters; and future action points. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. There was also an extraordinary meeting on 28 February, the minutes of which you can read here, to vote on the contractor to install the memorial bench at Spaines.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St George Parish Council took place on 10 January and you can read the minutes here. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council took place on 8 November and you can read the minutes here.

• Click here for a list of current consultations being run by Wiltshire Council.

• Marlborough area council contacts

Parishes: Marlborough Town CouncilAldbourne Parish CouncilRamsbury & Axford Parish Council, Great Bedwyn Parish CouncilOgbourne St George Parish Council and Ogbourne St Andrew Parish Council.

Wiltshire Council: click here to visit the website.

News from other areas

Penny Post area – please see the following separate sections: Hungerford areaMarlborough areaNewbury areaThatcham areaCompton and DownlandsTheale areaWantage areaSwindon area.

News and views from across the area and beyond: please see the most recent Weekly News with Brian column.

Thursday 7 April 2022

This week’s news

• The BBC reports that there were 4,425 CV-19 cases in Wiltshire in the week 27 March to 2 April, down 2,120 from the week before. This equates to 878 cases per 100,000. The average area in England had 712 (909 last week). See also this map from Gov.uk which enables figures at a more local level to be obtained.

Avebury National Trust will be hosting some fun family activities over the Easter holidays. Avebury Manor Garden will have an Easter Trail filled with little tasks and challenges with a chocolaty-prize at the end, running from 11-24 April 2022. Meanwhile, over at the Old Farmyard Barn, there will be Easter-themed craft activities for children. For more information check out the National Trust Website.

• This weekend, Phoenix Brass will be performing a concert for Ukraine in Marlborough Town Hall.  Entry is free, but there will be a retiring collection, raffle and refreshments with all funds raised going to the DEC Ukraine appeal: a wonderful way to spend a Sunday afternoon. The concert is to take place on Sunday 10 April, at 2:30pm.

Marlborough Youth Football Club are looking for new under 18 players to join the team. Whether for fun, fitness or stress relief, open sessions will be coming up in the next few weeks, so why not come along and give it a try? If interested, please contact club chair, Stuart Slater at chair@myfc.me.uk.

The first Marlborough Climate Day last Sat 2 April was organised by the Climate Action Working Party, in response to the Town Council’s Climate Emergency Declaration. It was attended by several community groups, councillors, local activist groups, school pupils and teachers, as well as residents wanting to improve their sustainability habits.  For all the details you can read the Marlborough News’ report here.

 Marlborough Town Council is busy putting together a programme of all the local events which will be held in celebration of the jubilee, on the weekend of 2 to 5 June. If you are planning a public event which you would like to be included in the programme, then please contact Assistant Town Clerk, Clare Harris at charris@marlborough-tc.gov.uk by the deadline of 22 April.

 A community campaign to save a local pub has been saved through being granted a fund from the government. The Silks pub, in Ogbourne St Andrews, has been closed since the start of the pandemic in March 2020. Thanks to the fundraising efforts of several local residents, the pub could now be reopened by this summer.  The campaign managed to raise an impressive £237,500, which has now been matched by the government through its Community Ownership Fund, which is designed to help save pubs in rural areas. With the original owners blessing, this has given the community enough money to buy the pub, and they have now already begun the redecorating process. More on this story here.

• The Hungerford Nursery School has some spaces for September and welcomes young children from Marlborough. As it does not have a specific catchment area, the nursery school is looking to share its Ofsted Outstanding provision with the wider community. Click here for more information.

• Due to structural issues at The Merchant’s House, the building is closed temporarily to all tours, visits and events. However, the shop remains open. For further information please contact 01672 511491 or info@themerchantshouse.co.uk.

• Wiltshire Council have just confirmed that parking charges are to be introduced on Sundays. Marlborough News believes that fee will be £1 for the day between 10am and 4pm. Please see here for more details.

• Several organisations including the Carers Café in Marlborough and Chilton Chicks Toddler Group in Chilton Foliate have been awarded grants by Marlborough Area Board. These grants enable the organisations to continue their work and continue to provide better services to those that rely on them. Please see more here on Marlborough News.

• There is currently a job vacancy at Marlborough Town Council for a Grounds Person to work in the parks and play areas as well as provide cover for the caretaking team. The deadline to apply for this position is the 11 April. For more information, click here.

• I started reading this article on Marlborough News about the town’s left-field, blue-sky plan for a new twin town, the location of which surprised me. Then I looked at the date of the post. A few people get fooled each year by our April fools so it’s good to know that the foot’s on the other horse, or whatever the cliché is. Good one.

• As we have previously mentioned, after a long-awaited two years, the Wilton Windmill will be open to the public from Easter until September on Sundays and Bank Holidays. Visitors are encouraged to bring their own picnics and hot and cold drinks, ice creams and cakes will be available in the shepherd’s hut. See more on the Wilton Windmill website here.

Marlborough LitFest has launched its Love Books competition, which invites participants to explain their choice of a favourite book, poem or play by either a written or video response. It is open to anyone across the country in three age groups: 13-16 years, 17-19 years and 20 years and above, with winners in each age category winning £300; runners-up will each win £100. The closing deadline for entries is 1 July. Visit marlboroughlitfest.org/2022-love-books-competition-now-open for more details.

• In case you missed it, Priory Gardens is now to be closed after 7pm. This was, once again due to disorderly conduct.

• The Aldbourne Cafe and Post Office request that people leave these donations for Ukraine with their next-door neighbour at 2, West Street and he will drive them to the collection point in Swindon.

Community notices

• Local runners might be tempted to sign up for the 20 mile Marlborough Downs Challenge through Avebury and beautiful landscape on Saturday 7 May. Sign up details are here.

• For the latest information changes to rail services between Bedwyn, Newbury and Paddington we recommend following the Bedwyn Train Passenger Group.

Local events and activities

For more information on events and activities across the Penny Post area, see the website calendar.

• Dates for the diary

• Sun 10 Apr Phoenix Brass’ Concert for Ukraine at Marlborough Town Hall, 2:20pm.

• Sun 10 Apr Easter Activities and Egg Hunt at Avebury National Trust. Until the 24 April.

Wed 13 Apr Savernake Teenagers’ Easter Disco 2022 at Marlborough Town Hall, 7:30pm to 10:30pm.

• Sun 17 Apr Burbage Tractor Run starting and ending Choppers Café on a circuit through several villages.

• Sun 24 Apr Jazz at The Merchants House at St Peters Church, Marlborough High Street, from 2pm.

• Sun 1 May Car Boot Sale on Marlborough Common, proceeds to go to Wiltshire Air Ambulance. Starts from 8am.

• Tue 31 May Queen Victoria’s Fashion the Assembly Room, Marlborough Town Hall, from 1:45pm.

• Sat 4 June Summer Ball hosted by Marlborough Rugby Club, on the Common, from 7pm.

• Regular events

• The Transition Marlborough Hub Group meet on the second Thursday of the month at 7.30pm currently by zoom. To get involved please email enquiries@transitionmarlborough.org.

• Marlborough Park Run is a free, weekly, timed five km walk, jog or run at 9am every Saturday. Open to all ages and abilities. Organised entirely by volunteers. Click here to see their Facebook page.

• Marlborough Floral Club meets 2pm on the first Thursday of the month at the Mildenhall Village Hall. For details please see here or call Micky Graham on 01672 514301.

The Menopause Matters Marlborougfacebook group provides a forum for women in Marlborough and the surrounding areas to access information and support relating to menopause.

• Marlborough Choral Society rehearses on Monday evenings, at Christchurch between 7.30pm and 9.15pm. For more information and where to sign up, please visit www.marlboroughchoralsociety.org.uk.

The White Horse Bookshop is offering workshops until the end of the year, click here for the full list.

News from your local councils

Note: “the most recent meeting” refers to the most recent one for which minutes (in some cases draft) or some other summary is available. Other meetings may have taken place since. Some councils publish minutes more promptly than do others.

• The most recent full meeting of Marlborough Town Council took place on 28 February and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: anti-costal behaviour; funding for the Jubilee Centre and New Road Day Centre, now known as The Enablement Hub; the condition of the A346; EV charge points in George Lane; the Great West Way; an invite to the Palace; town signage; the Dark Skies Festival; the jubilee; the Herbert leaf Charity; the climate emergency; the allotments; and committee reports. To see the dates and agendas for future Town Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. Click here for the latest on Marlborough’s neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Ramsbury & Axford Parish Council took place on 21 March and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: a farewell to Councillor Simon Smith; straightening out a confusion about the reason for a speed survey; street lights; collections for Ukraine; clay pigeon shooting; planning matters; financial matters; rights of way; play areas; the assurance, which echoes thos