Compton & Downlands Weekly News, Thursday 2 February 2023

Compton & Downland Weekly News header

Thursday 2 February 2023

This week we cover bird boxes, re-filling, riding, befriending and pampering – plus our round-up of local news, local events and activities and news from your local councils.

Did you know that once a month you can refill your household/workplace cleaning and body care products at Thatcham Refillable’s mobile shop at Compton Village Hall? Their next visit will be on Thursday 16 February when you can stock up on ethical and sustainable products while reducing your use of plastic. Their range includes laundry liquids & powder, stain remover, washing up liquids, dishwasher powder/tablets & rinse aid, surface cleaners, spirit cleaning vinegar (made from fermented beet & grain farm waste), dishbrushes, tea towels, food wraps, citric acid powder, bicarbonate of soda, liquid hand soaps & bubble bath, hand sanitisers, soap & shampoo bars, conditioners, body washes, bath salts, natural deodorants and lots more.

Jane Gartshore’s father has nine of his homemade bird boxes still available and now is an ideal time to put them up.  £5 donation please. So far he has raised about £50 from this batch of bird boxes and bird hotels, to be donated to West Berkshire Food Bank. Collect from 18 Newbury Lane, Compton.

Hampstead Norreys WI is holding a talk by Claire Spencer on Riding for the Disabled, at the Village Hall on Tuesday 7 February at 7.30pm.

• Top jazz entertainer Pete Allen returns to Newbury with his band this Sunday to start a new series of monthly shows on Sunday afternoons in the acoustic function room at the British Legion in Pelican Lane. Pete was born in Newbury and attended Winchcombe Primary and Junior Schools and The Downs in Compton. He formed his professional jazz band in 1978 and has entertained audiences at festivals, theatres and clubs around the world with his slick presentation of happy music featuring a team of talented and much respected musicians. Admission on the door is £15 and pre-show Sunday lunch is available from 12noon. For your table reservation call Dave direct at the club on 07555 364775. Come and enjoy tributes to some of the great legends of jazz including Louis Armstrong, Fats Waller and Sidney Bechet and many more. For further details please email Jane on nana.macgregor@btinternet.com or visit peteallenjazz.com

• All are welcome for free tea, coffee, cake and biscuits at The Wilkins Centre in Compton from 9.30 am to 11 am every Monday.

Steam train fans please note that The Bath & Gloucester Steam Express hauled by steam locomotive, LMS Jubilee Class 45699 Galatea will be puffing through Newbury this Saturday 4 February. See more details here and also on realtimetrains.co.uk.

• Less good news about trains – there will be no trains between Reading and Westbury from 18 February to 2 March inclusive due to extensive planned engineering works at various locations. Buses will be replacing trains from stations including Kintbury, Hungerford, Newbury, Thatcham conveying customers to either Theale or (after 8pm each day) into Reading for onward rail connections. See more details at gwr.com/travel-information

• Who is striking and when? Find out about the strikes this month and how they will affect you with the UK Strike Action Calendar which lists all currently planned regional and country-wide strikes.

 Compton Parish Council Project Groundwater is seeking residents of the Pang Valley to complete their survey so they can find out the best way to support the community. Please complete the survey here.

West Berkshire Council has published the draft of its Council Strategy 2023-27 and want feedback from members of the community. The document sets out what the Council intends to prioritise and improve, as well as how it will deliver core services over the next four years. Click here to read the draft council strategy and click here to give your feedback via the survey. The deadline to have your say on our draft proposals by Sunday 26 February. You can read my thoughts about the document in this separate post.

• NYAS – The National Youth Advocacy Service are looking forvolunteers in West Berkshire to befriend a child in care as an Independent Visitor. IVs are trained and vetted and are often the only adult who is not paid to be with the child. Theaim is for the child and IV to become long-term friends and meet up once a month (expenses reimbursed). Children in care often lead chaotic lives and having a consistent and stable friend can mean so much. It is a hugely rewarding process, and we know many people out there want to make a difference in society. See here for more information or contact Michelle.Playle@nyas.net

  The Autumn Group incorporating the Hobbies Group meets weekly in the Wilkins Centre, Compton to provide entertainment and interest and  their schedule for January and February is here. For further information contact Patricia on 07786 856440, Joan on 07818 292 322, Valerie on 07711 398 818 or Sharon on 07733 258 819.

  The Downs School has begun planning for a Pamper Evening on the evening of Thursday 16 March… just in time for Mother’s Day. If you are interested in being a stallholder, or offering treatments at this event, please email here.

The new cost of living support hub on West Berkshire Council website explains the different types of support available if you are struggling with rising living costs and are concerned about paying your household bills. You can also click here to read this article we’ve recently published about the Hub and what help and support you can expect from it.

• Quick reminder about support available to get you through the cost of living crisis, including tips on how to reduce your home energy bills. And please watch out for any scams that ask you to click to apply for energy rebates – they all happen automatically.

• For the latest West Ilsley newsletter please see here.

• For the latest Chaddleworth newsletter please see here.

Community notices

• See Compton Parish Council’s website for a list of current scams going around in the area that you should be aware of.

• Recovery in Mind and The Downland Practice host a free one hour introduction session for local adults wishing to further their knowledge on wellbeing and mental health. Please contact pm.downland@nhs.net to book your place.

• Downe House School in Cold Ash is offering term time swimming lessons on Mondays & Thursdays from 4pm and on Saturday from 9am. Non-swimmers and improvers from 3 1/2 years are invited to enjoy the 25 metre pool to hone this valuable life skill. Call 07788 427227 asap. There will only be 6 children per class so places are limited .

• Compton Karate based at Aldworth Village Hall is a small and friendly dojo that welcomes new members.

• More local hosts are needed for people escaping the war in Ukraine. If you could consider hosting a Ukrainian refugee or family, please get in contact with the local support group or visit westberks.gov.uk/homesforukraine.

• For how to avoid scams and what to do if you unluckily get caught, please see important advice here from Citizen’s Advice.

Local events and activities

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

• Dates for the diary

• Regular events and groups

• Stay, Play and Learn at Compton Village Hall on Thursday mornings during term for children 0-4 years to socialise with others, exploring a variety of play activities and crafts. Book online with West Berkshire Council here.

• The Gents Breakfast Club created by The Downland Practice – Social Prescribing is proving popular. If you would like more information please contact nicky.ager@nhs.net.

• Quiz night at The Crown and Horns in East Ilsley every Thursday from 7pm with prizes to be won. You can reserve a table by calling 01635281545 and see more information here.

• Brickleton Babes Baby and Toddler Group in Brightwalton Village Hall. Join their facebook group for details.

• Autumn Group regular meetings include the Hobbies Club at the Wilkins Centre, Compton. Visit their facebook page for details. Anyone from surrounding villages very welcome.

• Aldworth Art/Painting Group at the Aldworth Village Hall on first and third Tuesday of every month from 9.30am to noon. Details on the East Ilsley Communicator (issue 105, p 21) here.

 Aldworth Craft Group meet at Aldworth Village Hall on the second and fourth Monday of every month (within the school term time) from 10am to noon. More details in the East Ilsley Communicator (issue 105, p 16), which you can download here.

• Hampstead Norreys Village Hall club and event information is on Hampstead Norreys Community website.

• Ilsley Under Fives meet every Wednesday between 10am to 11.30am at various locations throughout the Ilsley villages. Please join their Facebook group  or a see details here.

News from your local council

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 meeting of Hampstead Norreys Council for which minutes are available  took place on 19 January and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: parking at The Downs School; planning matters; financial matters; maintenance and repairs; speeding; the 2023-24 precept (set at £26,167, an increase of 1%); football goals; thanks to the West Berkshire Countryside Society; and the Pang Valley Flood Forum.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Brightwalton Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 16 January and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: planning matters; the 2023 fete; the Village Hall; the playing field; first-aid training; highways; financial matters; the 2023-24 precept (a 4% increase to £7,753); and repairs and maintenance work.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here

• The most recent meeting of Beedon Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 11 January and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: a council resignation; warm welcomes; planning matters; the  coronation; repairs and maintenance; speeding; financial matters; and a new bench.
To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click hereTo see minutes from past meetings please click here. Please click here for details of the planning applications currently active in the parish.

• The most recent meeting of Compton Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 9 January and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: an update for ward member Carolyne Culver; reports from the working parties; planning matters; financial matters; a grant to the Village Hall; the 2023-24 precept (£57,000); and repairs and maintenance.
To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas, please click here. To see the minutes click herePlease click here for the latest on Compton’s neighbourhood development plan (which has now been ratified).

• The most recent meetings of Ashampstead Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 9 January and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: a report from the police; footpaths and byways; highways; planning matters; the open spaces review; and financial matters.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

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

• The most recent meeting of Aldworth Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 9 November and you can read the minutes here.
To see the dates, agendas and mintues for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of East Ilsley Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 8 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 Chaddleworth Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 1 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 Peasemore Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 19 January 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

• Compton & Downlands area council contacts

Parishes: Hampstead Norreys Parish Council, Compton Parish CouncilAshampstead Parish CouncilBeedon Parish CouncilChaddleworth Parish CouncilBrightwalton Parish CouncilPeasemore Parish Council, Aldworth Parish CouncilWest Ilsley Parish Council and East Ilsley Parish Council.

West Berkshire 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; Burghfield area; Wantage area; Marlborough area.

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

Archives

To see earlier Compton & Downlands & Surrounding Area Weekly News columns, please click here.

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