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 192 CV-19 cases in Swindon in the week 9 to 15 May, down 43 from the week before. This equates to 86 cases per 100,000. The average area in England had 82 (108 last week). See also this map from Gov.uk which enables figures at a more local level to be obtained.

• This weekend, The Duchess of Sutherland will be making its first trip of the year through Swindon on May 21. The locomotive is a Coronation class, built in the 1930s by the London Midland and Scottish Railway in streamlined condition. Exact timings are yet to be announced.

• Calling all swimmers: The Rotary Club of Swindon have announced that their charity Swimathon is returning on Sunday 22 May. Members of the public are being invited to help raise money between 10am and 2pm. You can find out more here.

• 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 Big Haydon Wick Jubilee Lunch, is a fun, free, family event taking place the King George V Playing Field. There with be lots of exciting activities to try from free youth football and drama workshops, face painting, a fancy-dress competition, a stage with live music, funfair attractions, street food and BBQ, a bar, bespoke craft and artisan stalls and so much more. Furthermore, a historic military aircraft, the Lancaster Bomber, will be making an appearance over head during the festivities. We hope to see you there on Saturday June 2, from 12pm to 5pm.

• 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.

• Speaking of military aircraft, a Supermarine Spitfire, will be taking part in an RAF Battle of Britain Memorial Flight in the Wiltshire Steam and Vintage Rally. The event run by the Wiltshire Agricultural Preservation Group, will be taking place in Lydiard Park on 11 and 12 June.

• For more information on a renewable energy generation scheme involving group-buying for solar panels and battery storage, visit www.solartogether.co.uk/wiltshire or call 0800 048 8113. Many thanks to Froxfield Parish Council for pointing this out to us. Note that this is only available to residents of Wiltshire and Swindon.

• Haydon Wick Parish Council is currently looking for a temporary part-time Tidy Up Operative to join their Parks & Open Spaces Team. Duties to include the emptying of public waste bins, litter picking, grass cutting, hedge cutting and assisting the Head of Parks & Open Spaces with the maintenance of the Council’s many open spaces. The role is around 22 -hours a week on a monthly contract of up to 3 months. To apply please send your CV and statement to Laura Cutter, Deputy Clerk deputyclerk@haydonwick.gov.uk  and Dave Hunt, Parks and Open Spaces Manager POSTManager@haydonwick.gov.uk. Please see here for more information regarding the role.

• Do you know about BEST? They provide coaching, training and mentoring for young people. They have some free enrichment sessions coming up for those aged 5-16, in football, martial arts and boxing. See here for more information regarding their enrichment sessions and for more about other programs and mentorships they run, visit there website.

• As mentioned last week, several major organisations in Swindon have backed Swindon Borough Council’s bid to make Swindon the new headquarters of Great British Railways (GBR).  If successful, this would see Swindon becoming the home for the new public body responsible for running Britain’s railways. The town is competing with a total of 42 other towns and cities around the country, who have also submitted bids to host the GBR. A shortlist of locations will be announced later this month and a deciding vote will take place. If you yourself would like to support this bid, they you can also submit your response to the survey here.

• Swindon has an existing, well-established Warm Welcome Team, set up in 2021 to support the arrival of refugees and asylum seekers from Afghanistan. The team is extending its offer to welcome refugees arriving from Ukraine and are getting prepared to provide a comprehensive support service. Please see more details here

Community notices

• Calling all swimmers: The Rotary Club of Swindon have announced that their charity Swimathon is returning on Sunday 22 May. Members of the public are being invited to help raise money between 10am and 2pm. You can find out more here.

• Swindon Big Knit at the Orbital make blankets for the homeless. If you would like to knit squares or help sew them together please sign up to their newsletter here.

• Swindon’s Croft Playgroup is celebrating its 50th anniversary on Sat 14 May from 10am to 11.30am. If you have any information about their history please contact 01793 512882, admin@croftplaygroup.co.uk or via Facebook.

• Swindon Borough Council has advised the public on how to stay safe and other information during the Diamond Jubilee celebrations here.

Sustainable Shrivenham is still fundraising to open a Sustainable Community Hub in a vacant building on Shrivenham High Street for a clothing and toy exchange; a monthly repair café; a tool library; a scrap store; a recycling collection (for items not collected curb side); as well as workshops, talks and information for sustainable living. They need to raise £16,000 for the initial set up and first year of running costs. The Hub aims to open up this summer and are currently running a GoFundMe page, so if you are interested in the Sustainable Community Hub becoming a reality, please consider donating.

• The Swindon Food Collective (Swindon’s food bank) has multiple drop-off points for non-perishable food and toiletries in Swindon as well as The Royal Oak in Bishopstone. Financial donations are also very welcome to help cover operating costs including our essential warehousing, staff, insurance and transport.

• Commuters please note that GWR has announced that the train timetable changes due to be in place until January 23 will now remain in place while crew shortages continue due to the ongoing Omicron crisis.

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 Exhibition: The Art of Industry  at STEAM Museum of the Great Wester Railway. Until 30 July.

• On now Exhibition: A Celebration of Colour  at Swindon Borough Council Civic Offices. Until 31 July.

• Sat 2 June The Big Haydon Wick Jubilee Lunch, the King George V playing fields, from 12pm to 5pm.

• Sat 11 June Wiltshire Steam and Vintage Festival, Lydiard Park. Until 12 June.

• Regular events

• Visit the What’s On Swindon Guide Facebook page to keep up to date with what’s on in and around Swindon.

• Total Swindon expresses a range of local events taking place in and around Swindon, see here for a full list of those.

• North Dorcan’s Senior Citizen Club has restarted and now meets on Tuesdays from 2pm to 4pm at St Paul’s Church. More information can be found on this Facebook post or call Dot Crook on 01793 824572.

• Click here for a brief overview of Swindon’s museums from Swindon Link.

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.

• For information about Swindon Borough Council, please click here. For details of the various council and committee meetings, please click here. To see the dates of future Council meetings (including committees), please click here. To see the agendas and minutes, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Royal Wootton Bassett Town Council took place on 12 May and you can download the minutes here. To see the dates of future Town 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 9 May 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 took place on 25 April 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 Watchfield Parish Council took place on  19 April 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 Bishopstone and Hinton Parva Parish Council took place on 4 April 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 Shrivenham Parish Council took place on 3 March and you can download the minutes hereTo see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas, please click here.

• Swindon area council contacts

Borough council: Swindon Borough Council.

Other councils, each of which covers part of this area: Vale of White Horse District Council and Wiltshire County Council.

Parishes: Royal Wootton Bassett Town CouncilChiseldon Parish CouncilShrivenham Parish CouncilWatchfield Parish CouncilWanborough Parish CouncilBishopstone and Hinton Parva Parish Council and Ashbury Parish Council.

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; Marlborough area.

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

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

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