Compton & Downlands Weekly News, Thursday 7 December 2023

Compton & Downland Weekly News header

Thursday 7 December 2023

Our usual round-up of  local news includes: a disco, busses, prizes, football and closures – plus a look at Laura Farris MP’s recent visit the Pang and a further look at claims of her having advanced Thames Water’s repairs schedule. See also below for community notices and news from your local council.

Upcoming Compton area events include: festive extravaganzas, markets and a disco. See below for details, plus regular events and group activities

This week’s news

Calling all villagers with family and friends with Pre-school, Reception and KS1 aged children please spread the word and support the Pre school Disco fundraiser event on Thursday 14 December for Compton Pre-school, from 4pm to 6pm at Compton Village Hall. Please click here to purchase your tickets.

Friends of Compton Primary School are offering you the chance to win over £200 worth of prizes including a bottle of Hawkridge Gin for just £1 in their Christmas Raffle. There is no limit on the number of tickets you can purchase, so why not tilt the odds in your favour and buy more than 1 and support the school, by clicking here.

• Do you know any local residents or volunteers who have gone above and beyond to help the community? Quick reminder that there is still time to nominate them for West Berkshire’s Community Champion Awards. Fill in the online nomination form by 11 December.

• Quick reminder about free bus travel on Saturdays 16 and 23 December. The free travel even extends to our neighbouring areas such as Reading, Basingstoke, and Swindon. If you start your journey in West Berkshire, your return journey is also free. To learn more click here.

• Compton Players invite you to their one night only, fundraising Victorian Christmas Murder Mystery Evening in Compton Village Hall on Friday 15 December. The audience will be seated at tables with the action taking place around them so it sounds like an evening not to be missed. Tickets cost £15 and include food. Book here.

• FC Cougars currently have spaces for footballers U6s, U7s and Under 16s. If you are interested contact graham on [email protected]

• For road closures and other news visit Hampstead Norreys Parish Council‘s facebook page.

• Testing the water

In her recent e-0newsletter (which I can’t link to as, despite my having suggested this, her office doesn’t set these up with a “view in browser” button), Laura Farris MP said that she “recently joined Michael Wilson, a retired Professor of Microbiology, who is doing weekly water testing up and down the Pang with Action for the River Kennet (ARK).

“The purpose is to continually monitor the quality of water at various points and gather new data, so that we can hold Thames Water’s feet to the fire on their commitment to prioritise the health of our chalk streams. This seems to be appropriate given that they have already agreed to my insistence that the overhaul of the Hampstead Norreys treatment works is brought forward to 2024 to 2025.”

This claim about having seemingly single-handedly caused Thames Water to rearrange its work schedule has come up before and I was disappointed to see it repeated, as if it were a matter of contestable fact, in a local newspaper. You can read an alternative conclusion here.

The remark having resurfaced, I once again contacted Peter Devery, the Secretary of the Tidmarsh Fly Fishing Syndicate, for his thoughts.

“Thank you to Professor Wilson and ARK for undertaking this extended water testing programme on the Pang.,” he said. “What a sad situation when we need concerned scientists and campaign groups to test our local chalk stream for harmful bacteria and chemicals. Through the Angling Trust Water Quality Monitoring Network we know that phosphate levels in the Pang, which give an indication of pollution, are quite literally off the scale. On 27 October the phosphate level immediately below Compton sewage works measured over 2.50ppm. Since the testing instrument’s limit is 2.50ppm, the actual pollution levels could be much higher.

“While it’s a nice PR opportunity for Ms Farris to associate herself with people taking action to protect the Pang, it is also extremely disingenuous. Her parliamentary voting record includes being one of 292 Conservative MPs who voted to let water companies continue disposing of untreated sewage in rivers and seas for another 15 years. The much needed sewage works improvements at Hampstead Norreys were already confirmed for early completion before she realised she needed to appear to be doing something on this vote losing issue. Beyond empty posturing, what exactly is she doing to hold Thames Water’s feet to the fire?”

Parish and town councils also run consultations from time to time: see the appropriate website/s below under Council contacts.

Latest local newsletters

Community notices

Have your say on current consulations by West Berkshire Council. Parish and town councils also run consultations from time to time: see the appropriate website/s below under Council contacts.

Drop-in café at St Mary & St Nicholas, Compton on the last Wednesday afternoon of the month at Compton Village Hall. Refreshments and friendly chit-chat. Open to anyone.

• Compton Parish Council is keen to remind residents to please take rubbish home with them if litter bins are full.

• 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. There is no shame if you do get caught out by scammers (Penny has) and you must seek help and warn others.


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 14 Dec Pre-School Disco  Compton Village Hall

Fri 15 Dec Christmas Evening Fayre   Downside Farm Blewbury

Fri 15 Dec Murder Mystery Fundraiser Evening Compton Village Hall

• Wed 20 Dec Santa Sleigh Ride Pre-School Compton

• 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 Handybus service to Wantage picks up Chaddleworth and Leckhamstead residents from their homes on the second and fourth Tuesday morning. The round trip will cost £4. See here for more details and how to book.

• Marcham Cricket Club welcomes new cricket players and officials.

• All are welcome to enjoy Tea and a Chat on Mondays from 9.30am to 11am at the Wilkins Centre in Compton.

Wellbeing and mental health free one hour introduction session with Recovery in Mind and The Downland Practice. Please contact [email protected] to book your place.

• Drop Off/Drop In Coffee Morning every Wednesday during term time at Brightwalton Church from 8.45 to 10am.

Free coffee and cake morning at The Wilkins Centre in Compton from 9.30 am to 11 am every Monday.

• The Aldworth Saturday Market at Aldworth Village Hall, RG8 9SE from 10.30am to midday sells fresh fruit and vegetables, groceries, stamps and cards; tea and coffee. Contact Kathy on 01635 578090 or e-mail [email protected]

Brightwalton footballers on the field next to Brightwalton Village Hall on Wednesday evenings. Kick off at 7pm for all players over 15 years old.

• The Gents Breakfast Club created by The Downland Practice – Social Prescribing is proving popular. If you would like more information please contact [email protected].

• Compton Tots on the first and third Thursday of every month at Compton Village Hall from 9.30am to 11am. Providing a safe, fun and educational space, in partnership will Compton Pre-school for 0-5 years and costs £2 per family (cash only).

• 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 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 West Ilsley Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 14 November and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the ward members’ report; planning matters; financial matters; the Village Hall; speeding; and the West Ilsley Parish Council Trust.
To see the dates, agendas and minutes for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees) please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Compton Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 6 November and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: The Downs School; the allotments; the Sports Pavilion; planning matters; and financial matters.
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 meeting of Chaddleworth Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 12 September 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 Aldworth Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 11 September and you can download 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 Brightwalton Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 11 September 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 Beedon Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 25 October and you can read the minutes here.
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 Peasemore Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 25 October and you can download 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 Hampstead Norreys Council for which minutes are available  took place on 28 September 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 East Ilsley Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 11 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 meetings of Ashampstead Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 22 May 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.

Facebook
Twitter
Pinterest
Email
Print

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Sign up to the free weekly

Penny Post
e-newsletter 

 

For: local positive news, events, jobs, recipes, special offers, recommendations & more.

Covering: Newbury, Thatcham, Hungerford, Marlborough, Wantage, Lambourn, Compton, Swindon & Theale