Thursday 27 January 2022

Scroll down for local events and activities and news from your local councils.

This week’s news

• Burghfield Common’s The Mrs Williams Pre-School is facing closure because of rising costs and low pupil numbers, caused largely by the pandemic. A GoFundMe page has been set up and aims to raise £10,000 to help cover cost to save the school. Other fundraising events are also happening across the district such as a Coffee Morning to be held at the pre-school on Saturday 29 January. Burghfield Spices has also taken up fundraising efforts by donating 100% of its profits from all food orders on 26 January. You can read further information regarding the school’s potential closure via a Reading Chronicle article.

• Click here for there latest e-newsletter from ward member Alan Macro which includes a list of live planning applications in the parish.

He also refers to the fact that planning application 21/03256/RESMAJ has been submitted for approval of reserved matters (appearance, landscaping, layout and scale) following outline planning permission 15/02842/OUTMAJ that was approved on appeal. 

“The proposal is for 296 homes, made up of houses, flats, and a 70-unit extra-care sheltered housing block. Some of the blocks of flats in the proposal would be four stories high. The seven houses already approved for the part of the site at the end of St Ives Close needs to be added to the 296. The developers have already tried to increase that to eleven houses.  The plans and other documents can be accessed by clicking here.

“Another application (21/03255/MDOPO2) was submitted at the same time to change the proportion of affordable homes. This was originally to be 12.5%, which could be increased depending on the profitability of the development. This application is a request to change this to a flat 30%.”

• A reminder from Theale Parish Council that the RSPB Big Garden Birdwatch starts this weekend. The council has asked for any volunteer’s help to build four starling nest boxes, to help local bio-diversity and put a stop to the falling starling numbers in the UK (which has been evident since the 1970s). Please see the town council’s Facebook post for further information and how to get involved.

• It’s another step up the ladder for ex-Bradfield College student Lauren Bell, as she has earned her place in the upcoming England Women’s squad for the Commonwealth Bank Women’s Ashes Test match. Lauren grew up in Hungerford and was at primary school with our eldest son and we have been following her career here. We all have our fingers crossed that Lauren and the rest of our Women’s team can provide more competition to the Aussies than our Men’s team did recently…

• This week will be your final chance to provide any thoughts and opinions to Royal Berkshire Fire Authority regarding its funding from council tax for the next financial year. You can respond by completing this online survey before 5pm on Tuesday 1 February or ask for more information by emailing precepting@rbfrs.co.uk. Further details can be found via the Royal Berkshire Fire and Rescue Service website and Facebook page.

• Another chance to voice any opinions towards Royal Berkshire Fire and Rescue Service, as they wish to learn more about how they can respond to Automatic Fire Alarms alerts to help reduce the burden of false alarms on the service. Please respond to the online survey and see an informational video regarding the consultation.

• West Berkshire Council Community Champions 2021 winners were announced last week. Please see the council’s website post for further details of the various 2021 award winners throughout our district. Mortimer’s Lunch Club sadly can’t currently meet due to the club’s postponement until 24 February, but that didn’t stop them from winning the Community Group of the Year award. Congratulations from all of us here at Penny Post.

• More news from West Berkshire Council, as they have notified local residents that (as of Monday 7 February) bin collection dates will be changing in order to accommodate for the impacts of both the nationwide HGV driver shortage and Covid-19. Again, further information and FAQs regarding the changes can be read on the council’s website including a new bin-day finder page which was added on 25 January.

• A quick reminder that the final consultation on a proposal to develop a specialist education centre for young people with complex social, emotional and mental health needs (SEMH) in Theale is now live and will remain open until midnight on 6 February.

• As previously mentioned, Aldermaston Parish Council’s updated Conservation Area Appraisal Report, is now available. Thoughts and comments from locals, especially those living inside the CA, can be sent to the Parish Clerk at parishclerk@aldermaston.co.uk by Monday 14 February.

• Anyone interested in joining a singing group can join Holy Trinity Church, Theale free choir group, who meet for rehearsals on Thursdays between 7pm to 8pm and then perform at Sunday services starting from 10.30am. All are welcome to join, with further details found on Facebook or by sending an email to office@holytrinitytheale.org.uk.

• Click here to read the January 2022 Padworth Newsletter which, as ever, also has information from neighbouring parishes.

• Also a January 2022 issue of the Aldermaston Parish Council newsletter has just been released which covers various topics such as reviews of the recent skate ramp survey and other planning permissions, as well as a response to feedback regarding electric vehicle charging points.

• The Benefice of Aldermaston and Woolhampton published its final Parish Magazine for 2021, which also covers local events in January 2022.

• The Burghfield May Fayre 2022 will be held on Sunday 8 May, as announced on the burghfieldresidents.org website. Applications for fayre stalls allocation can now be made via the website, with the Funfair, Dog Show, Arena Displays, Craft Stalls, Café, Food Stalls and The Bar all returning for this year’s event. Further details and updates will be released shortly.

• West Berkshire Library Service is appealing for local volunteers at Mortimer and Burghfield Common libraries. Please see this post on Facebook, call 01635 519533 or email volunteerinyourlibrary@westberks.gov.uk for further information.

• Until Monday 28 February, the Village Stores in Burghfield will be shut due to health and safety issues surrounding its current on-site construction work.

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 28 Jan Board Games Group 3.45pm to 5.45pm Mortimer Library.

• Fri 28 Jan Winter Party 7pm till late The Six Bells, Beenham.

Sat 29 Jan Fundraiser Coffee Morning 10am to 3pm Mrs Williams Pre-School, Burghfield Common, RG7 3HP.

• Sat 29 Jan Crafty Church (Winter Fun) 10.30am to noon St Mary’s Church, Burghfield.

• Sat 5 Feb Charity Race Night 7.30pm Beenham Club.

• Sun 6 Feb Live – Rag & Moan Men 3pm Beenham Club.

Mon 7 Feb Monday Book Group 2pm to 3pm Mortimer Library.

• Thu 10 Feb Thatcham Refillable Mobile Shop Monthly 11.30am to 1.30pm 9 Clayhill Road, Burghfield Common RG73HB.

Thu 10 Feb Open Mic Night 8pm The Crown & Garden, Theale.

Sat 12 Feb Inflatable Fun Day 10am to 3pm Theale Green School.

15, 16 & 17 Feb School Cinderella Performance 7pm School Hall, Theale Green School.

Tue 22 Feb Historic Tours of Ufton Court 10am Ufton Court, Ufton Nervet, RG7 4HD.

Sat 26 Feb Toy Library 10am to 11am Mortimer Methodist Church.

• Regular events

 Theale Library hosts in-person events for people of all ages. To find out more information on future clubs and events click here to visit the West Berkshire Library Facebook page or email Theale Library at thealelibrary@westberks.gov.uk.

 Holy Trinity Church, Theale is asking for food donations to be made to West Berks Food Bank which can be dropped off at the church on Sundays and Wednesdays between 10.30am to 6pm.

• Other locations for collection points across the Theale area for West Berks Food Bank can be found in The Benefice of Aldermaston and Woolhampton Magazine (21 12 edition, p 7).

• Beenham Art Group meets every Tuesday between 10am till noon at Victory Hall, Beenham. Contact details and information can be found in The Benefice of Aldermaston and Woolhampton Magazine (21 12 edition, p 18).

 Aldermaston & Wasing Ladies Group meets on the second Thursday of each month from 2pm at Aldermaston Parish Hall, please see Padworth Parish Council Newsletter (No 154 December 2021/January 2022 Edition p 5) for further information on the group.

• Padworth Village Hall hosts Padworth and Aldermaston WI on the third Tuesday of every month at 7.30pm. Further information on the group can be found in Padworth Parish Council Newsletter (No 154 December 2021/January 2022 Edition p 6).

• Beenham WI updates and contact details can be found in The Benefice of Aldermaston and Woolhampton Magazine (21 12 edition, p 14).

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 Theale Parish Council took place on 10 January and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: a report from District Councillor Alan Macro; reports from committees and working groups; the jubilee fête on Sunday 5 June; planning and licensing matters; and financial matters, including the 2022-23 budget (the precept requested being £139,000). 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 Stratfield Mortimer Parish Council took place on 13 January and you can read the minutes here. Items covered include: lime trees on the Fairground; speeding; the station car park; financial matters (including the the 2022-23 budget, the precept being set at £149,319); committee and working party reports; the neighbourhood development plan; delegated authority and general powers of competence; the jubilee; the Burghfield to Mortimer footpath; planning matters; correspondence; and the games club at the Library. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• See this page on Stratfield Mortimer PC’s website for more information on the refresh of its neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Padworth Parish Council took place on 10 January and you can read the minutes here.  Items covered included: the bus shelter; financial matters; planning matters; Thames Water; footpaths; and heritage sites. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Aldermaston Parish Council took place on 11 January and you can read the minutes here in due course. Items covered included: presentations from both sides of the planning application for Cedars Lodge, Soke Road (various conditions were requested); a request from Lidl to extend delivery hours at their recently approved new store at the Tadley border (“we are not confident of success, but decided to object on the grounds of noise and disturbance, particularly to residents of older properties in the Conservation Area”); the skateboard ramp See also above); the “disappointing” WBC reaction  to our proposals for horse awareness signage in the Raghill area; a clarification about potassium iodide tablets (which are, contrary to what was recently reported in the Newbury Weekly News, not available for local residents in the event of a nuclear incident at AWE; and the “final pass” at the 2022-23 budget, remaining unchanged at £13,500 – the PC “would like to remind parishioners that this is considerably lower than other parishes of similar size.” 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 Burghfield Parish Council took place on 6 January and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: a councillor vacancy; freedom of information (see also separate section above); committee reports; financial matters (including the the 2022-23 budget, the precept being set at £281,470); and delegated authority. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Bradfield Parish Council took place on 7 December and you can read the minutes hereTo 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 Beenham Parish Council took place on 6 December 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 details of Beenham’s Community Plan.

• The most recent meeting of Englefield Parish Council took place on 29 September (even though it says 29 June at the top) and you can read the minutes hereTo see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas, please click here.

• Theale area council contacts

Parishes: Theale Parish CouncilAldermaston Parish CouncilPadworth Parish CouncilStratfield Mortimer Parish Council, Englefield Parish CouncilBeenham Parish CouncilBradfield Parish Council and Burghfield 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; Marlborough area; Newbury area; Thatcham area; Compton and Downlands; Theale 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 20 January 2022

This week’s news

• A final consultation on a proposal to develop a specialist education centre for young people with complex social, emotional and mental health (SEMH) needs in Theale is now live and will remain open until midnight on 6 February.

• Aldermaston Parish Council’s updated Conservation Area Appraisal Report, is now available. The update explains that the council believes “a long overdue appraisal of the Aldermaston Conservation Area (CA), which covers most of the central part of our Village,  would be a good opportunity help preserve the special features of our Conservation Area generally, and to address the issue of heavy traffic on the A340 more specifically”. Thoughts and comments from locals, especially those living inside the CA, can be sent to the Parish Clerk at parishclerk@aldermaston.co.uk by Monday 14 February.

• Bradfield College has recently created a Sustainable Bradfield newsletter. The January 2022 edition covers how the local community can help with reducing energy use and carbon emissions, biodiversity, recycling and waste reduction, plus eco-catering.

• Anyone interested in joining a singing group can join Holy Trinity Church, Theale free choir group, who meet for rehearsals on Thursdays between 7pm to 8pm and then perform at Sunday services starting from 10.30am. All are welcome to join, with further details found on Facebook or by sending an email to office@holytrinitytheale.org.uk.

• Theale District Councillor Alan Macro has recently published his latest residents’ newsletter, which you can read here. As well as listing local planning applications (see also below) he also refers to a planned cycle and footpath link between the proposed Lakeside housing site and Station Road.

• Click here to read the January 2022 Padworth Newsletter which, as ever, also has information from neighbouring parishes.

• With Reading FC struggling for form and fighting off potential relegation, Berkshire football fans may have their heads turned by the recent success of Burghfield FC in the FA Sunday Cup. The Men’s Sunday team of Burghfield progressed through to the Last 16 of the nationwide competition, with a 4-1 win against Banstead Rovers. They are now set to face an away trip to Highgate Albion, to battle for a place in the quarter finals. You can read match reports from FootballinBerkshire and rdg.today to follow the events of Burghfield’s impressive win.

• Also a January 2022 issue of the Aldermaston Parish Council newsletter has just been released which covers various topics such as reviews of the recent skate ramp survey and other planning permissions, as well as a response to feedback regarding electric vehicle charging points.

• The Benefice of Aldermaston and Woolhampton published its final Parish Magazine for 2021, which also covers local events in January 2022.

• The Burghfield May Fayre 2022 will be held on Sunday 8 May, as announced on the burghfieldresidents.org website. Applications for fayre stalls allocation can now be made via the website, with the Funfair, Dog Show, Arena Displays, Craft Stalls, Café, Food Stalls and The Bar all returning for this year’s event. Further details and updates will be released shortly.

• As mentioned last week, four of Burghfield FC‘s Ladies team players are fundraising for UK-wide charity Action Medical Research. As mentioned on the group’s JustGiving page, they will be competing in July’s Race The Sun: Dawn to Dusk Triple Challenge which is a triathlon-style adventure challenge set around the Brecon Beacons.

• Sulhamstead’s Thames Valley Police Museum are hosting open mornings throughout January. Please see our ‘dates for the diary’ newsletter section below for links and further details.

Royal Berkshire Fire Authority is asking for Berkshire’s thoughts and opinions on their funding coming through council tax for the next financial year. You can respond by completing this online survey before 5pm on Tuesday 1 February or ask for more information by emailing precepting@rbfrs.co.uk. Further details can be found via the Royal Berkshire Fire and Rescue Service website and Facebook page.

• West Berkshire Library Service is appealing for local volunteers at Mortimer and Burghfield Common libraries. Please see this post on Facebook, call 01635 519533 or email volunteerinyourlibrary@westberks.gov.uk for further information.

• A mortimervillage.org.uk article has announced that the Lunch Club has been postponed until 24 February because of concerns regarding the recent spread of the Covid Omicron variant.

• Another closure in the Theale area, as until Monday 28 February the Village Stores in Burghfield will be shut due to health and safety issues surrounding its current on-site construction work.

Freedom of information

The most recent meeting of Burghfield Parish Council on 6 January discussed the fact that 11 requests for information (eight of them FoIs) had been submitted in November and December . A full list of the topics covered – which seem mainly to be concerned with grants, assets and procedural matters – can be seen in the PC minutes here. A question to the Chairman from one of the members wondered “if there’s anything that can be done to reduce this administrative burden of these requests on the Parish Council.” 

I don’t know exactly what lies behind these requests, nor how many people made them, but it seems to me that a number of the matters asked about including the grant donations, the cookies policy, information about the NDP and the audit reports going hack to 2016 should probably be on the PC website anyway. Others, like details of the assets owned by the PC, should be easily available and perhaps should be on the website as well. There may be something else at work here which the minutes don’t reveal but I’m just taking the requests at their face value. Irksome as they often are to deal with, many such requests are made simply because it’s felt that the information isn’t available.

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 22 Jan Toy Library 10am Mortimer Methodist Church Hall.

• Wed 26 Jan Museum Open Morning 10am to noon Thames Valley Police Training Centre, Sulhamstead.

• Fri 28 Jan Winter Party 7pm till late The Six Bells, Beenham.

Sat 29 Jan Crafty Church (Winter Fun) 10.30am to noon St Mary’s Church, Burghfield.

Sat 5 Feb Charity Race Night 7.30pm Beenham Club.

Sun 6 Feb Live – Rag & Moan Men 3pm Beenham Club.

Thu 10 Feb Thatcham Refillable Mobile Shop Monthly 11.30am to 1.30pm 9 Clayhill Road, Burghfield Common RG73HB.

• Regular events

 Theale Library hosts in-person events for people of all ages. To find out more information on future clubs and events click here to visit the West Berkshire Library Facebook page or email Theale Library at thealelibrary@westberks.gov.uk.

 Holy Trinity Church, Theale is asking for food donations to be made to West Berks Food Bank which can be dropped off at the church on Sundays and Wednesdays between 10.30am to 6pm.

• Other locations for collection points across the Theale area for West Berks Food Bank can be found in The Benefice of Aldermaston and Woolhampton Magazine (21 12 edition, p 7).

• Beenham Art Group meets every Tuesday between 10am till noon at Victory Hall, Beenham. Contact details and information can be found in The Benefice of Aldermaston and Woolhampton Magazine (21 12 edition, p 18).

 Aldermaston & Wasing Ladies Group meets on the second Thursday of each month from 2pm at Aldermaston Parish Hall, please see Padworth Parish Council Newsletter (No 154 December 2021/January 2022 Edition p 5) for further information on the group.

• Padworth Village Hall hosts Padworth and Aldermaston WI on the third Tuesday of every month at 7.30pm. Further information on the group can be found in Padworth Parish Council Newsletter (No 154 December 2021/January 2022 Edition p 6).

• Beenham WI updates and contact details can be found in The Benefice of Aldermaston and Woolhampton Magazine (21 12 edition, p 14).

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 Theale Parish Council took place on 10 January and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: a report from District Councillor Alan Macro; reports from committees and working groups; the jubilee fête on Sunday 5 June; planning and licensing matters; and financial matters, including the 2022-23 budget (the precept requested being £139,000). 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 Stratfield Mortimer Parish Council took place on 13 January and you can read the minutes here. Items covered include: lime trees on the Fairground; speeding; the station car park; financial matters (including the the 2022-23 budget, the precept being set at £149,319); committee and working party reports; the neighbourhood development plan; delegated authority and general powers of competence; the jubilee; the Burghfield to Mortimer footpath; planning matters; correspondence; and the games club at the Library. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• See this page on Stratfield Mortimer PC’s website for more information on the refresh of its neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Padworth Parish Council took place on 10 January and you can read the minutes here.  Items covered included: the bus shelter; financial matters; planning matters; Thames Water; footpaths; and heritage sites. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Aldermaston Parish Council took place on 11 January and you can read the minutes here in due course. Items covered included: presentations from both sides of the planning application for Cedars Lodge, Soke Road (various conditions were requested); a request from Lidl to extend delivery hours at their recently approved new store at the Tadley border (“we are not confident of success, but decided to object on the grounds of noise and disturbance, particularly to residents of older properties in the Conservation Area”); the skateboard ramp See also above); the “disappointing” WBC reaction  to our proposals for horse awareness signage in the Raghill area; a clarification about potassium iodide tablets (which are, contrary to what was recently reported in the Newbury Weekly News, not available for local residents in the event of a nuclear incident at AWE; and the “final pass” at the 2022-23 budget, remaining unchanged at £13,500 – the PC “would like to remind parishioners that this is considerably lower than other parishes of similar size.” 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 Burghfield Parish Council took place on 6 January and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: a councillor vacancy; freedom of information (see also separate section above); committee reports; financial matters (including the the 2022-23 budget, the precept being set at £281,470); and delegated authority. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Bradfield Parish Council took place on 7 December and you can read the minutes hereTo 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 Beenham Parish Council took place on 6 December 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 details of Beenham’s Community Plan.

• The most recent meeting of Englefield Parish Council took place on 29 September (even though it says 29 June at the top) and you can read the minutes hereTo see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas, please click here.

• Theale area council contacts

Parishes: Theale Parish CouncilAldermaston Parish CouncilPadworth Parish CouncilStratfield Mortimer Parish Council, Englefield Parish CouncilBeenham Parish CouncilBradfield Parish Council and Burghfield Parish Council.

West Berkshire Council: click here to visit the website.

Thursday 13 January 2022

This week’s news

• A final consultation on a proposal to develop a specialist education centre for young people with complex social, emotional and mental health (SEMH) needs in Theale is now live and will remain open until 6 February..

• Theale District Councillor Alan Macro has recently published his latest residents’ newsletter, which you can read here. As well as listing local planning applications (see also below) he also refers to a planned cycle and footpath link between the proposed Lakeside housing site and Station Road.

• Click here to read the January 2022 Padworth Newsletter which, as ever, also has information from neighbouring parishes.

• Also a January 2022 issue of the Aldermaston Parish Council newsletter has just been released which covers various topics such as; reviews of the recent skate ramp survey and other planning permissions, as well as a response to feedback regarding electric vehicle charging points.

• The Benefice of Aldermaston and Woolhampton published its final Parish Magazine for 2021, which also covers local events in January 2022.

• As mentioned last week, BBC News reported Bradfield College’s plans to change Church of St Andrew, Bradfield into a study centre for pupils was approved by West Berkshire Council. The plans would see the Grade II* listed 14th Century church adapted to include “a library, seminar rooms, presentation space and refreshment area” plus would see the “addition of fans which will be hung from existing rafters and beams in the main part of the church to recirculate warm air back down to the ground level to offset the leak-prone nature of the building”. However, the plans do also include “removing some grave headstones” in the church’s graveyard.

• Further religious news, West Berkshire Council has rejected the Plymouth Brethren’s application to build a new church barn and burial ground in Sulhamstead. As reported by NewburyToday, the council stated its reasoning behind the rejection as “the proposed new church hall lies on a greenfield site between Hollybush Lane and Shortheath Lane” plus that the facility would increase local traffic, visually harm the area and would be only useful for a “very small percentage of the local population for which no exceptional need was demonstrated”.

Burghfield May Fayre 2022 will be held on Sunday 8 May, as announced on the burghfieldresidents.org website. Applications for fayre stalls allocation can now be made via the website, with the Funfair, Dog Show, Arena Displays, Craft Stalls, Café, Food Stalls and The Bar all returning for this year’s event. Further details and updates will be released shortly.

Theale Green School was given a surprise donation from tech giant Amazon, although as the donation came via four tail-lift trucks it might’ve been hard to miss their arrival… The delivery handed the school vital equipment for its pupils, which is especially useful in the current economic climate for our local schools.

• Plenty of news coming from Burghfield FC recently, as four of their Ladies team players are fundraising for UK-wide charity Action Medical Research. As mentioned on the group JustGiving page, they will be competing in July’s Race The Sun: Dawn to Dusk Triple Challenge which is a triathlon-style adventure challenge set around the Brecon Beacons.

• Staying with the football club, Burghfield’s Sunday Men’s team is playing their Second Round fixture in the FA Sunday Cup on Sunday 16 January. They face Banstead Rovers for a 1pm kick-off at Burnham FC’s 1878 Stadium. Sunday Men’s team manager Liam Gillis and team captain Bradley Kerr both spoke to cup Twitter promoters (not associated with the FA) in two separate interviews, in which they reflect on their thrilling first round victory and what the competition means to the club.

• Sulhamstead’s Thames Valley Police Museum are hosting open mornings throughout January. Please see our ‘dates for the diary’ newsletter section below for links and further details.

• Thames Valley Police and Crimes Commissioner, Matthew Barber, is asking residents across the Thames Valley area for their opinions for the 2022/23 Police Budget. An online survey can be responded to before the deadline of 5pm on Tuesday 18 January. Matthew Barber has stated the importance of any responses by saying “giving us your feedback, you can help shape decisions about police funding and how Thames Valley Police can continue to work to keep us all safe.”

• Also, Royal Berkshire Fire Authority is asking for Berkshire’s thoughts and opinions on their funding coming through council tax for the next financial year. You can respond by completing this online survey before 5pm on Tuesday 1 February or ask for more information by emailing precepting@rbfrs.co.uk. Further details can be found via the Royal Berkshire Fire and Rescue Service website and Facebook page.

• West Berkshire Library Service is appealing for local volunteers at Mortimer and Burghfield Common libraries. Please see this post on Facebook, call 01635 519533 or email volunteerinyourlibrary@westberks.gov.uk for further information.

• A mortimervillage.org.uk article has announced that the Lunch Club has been postponed until 24 February because of concerns regarding the recent spread of the Covid Omicron variant.

• Another closure in the Theale area, as from 10 January to 28 February the Village Stores in Burghfield will be shut due to health and safety issues surrounding its current on-site construction work.

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 Jan Live Music – Jamie Trick 8pm The Six Bells, Burghfield.

• Mon 17 Jan Mobile Library 9.30am to 10.45am Jubilee Day Nursey, Padworth.

• Wed 19 Jan Museum Open Morning 10am to noon Thames Valley Police Training Centre, Sulhamstead.

• Wed 19 Jan History Talk on Roman Silchester 7.30pm The Hinds Head, Aldermaston.

Thu 20 Jan Burghfield Camera Club 7.30pm to 10pm St Oswald’s Church, Burghfield Common.

• Sat 22 Jan Toy Library 10am Mortimer Methodist Church Hall.

Wed 26 Jan Museum Open Morning 10am to noon Thames Valley Police Training Centre, Sulhamstead.

Fri 28 Jan Winter Party 7pm till late The Six Bells, Beenham.

• Regular events

 Theale Library hosts in-person events for people of all ages. To find out more information on future clubs and events click here to visit the West Berkshire Library Facebook page or email Theale Library at thealelibrary@westberks.gov.uk.

 Holy Trinity Church, Theale is asking for food donations to be made to West Berks Food Bank which can be dropped off at the church on Sundays and Wednesdays between 10.30am to 6pm.

• Other locations for collection points across the Theale area for West Berks Food Bank can be found in The Benefice of Aldermaston and Woolhampton Magazine (21 12 edition, p 7).

• Beenham Art Group meets every Tuesday between 10am till noon at Victory Hall, Beenham. Contact details and information can be found in The Benefice of Aldermaston and Woolhampton Magazine (21 12 edition, p 18).

 Aldermaston & Wasing Ladies Group meets on the second Thursday of each month from 2pm at Aldermaston Parish Hall, please see Padworth Parish Council Newsletter (No 154 December 2021/January 2022 Edition p 5) for further information on the group.

• Padworth Village Hall hosts Padworth and Aldermaston WI on the third Tuesday of every month at 7.30pm. Further information on the group can be found in Padworth Parish Council Newsletter (No 154 December 2021/January 2022 Edition p 6).

• Beenham WI updates and contact details can be found in The Benefice of Aldermaston and Woolhampton Magazine (21 12 edition, p 14).

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 Theale Parish Council took place on 10 January and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: a report from District Councillor Alan Macro; reports from committees and working groups; the jubilee fête on Sunday 5 June; planning and licensing matters; and financial matters, including the 2022-23 budget (the precept requested being £139,000). 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 Aldermaston Parish Council took place on 11 January and you can read the minutes here in due course. Items covered included: presentations from both sides of the planning application for Cedars Lodge, Soke Road (various conditions were requested); a request from Lidl to extend delivery hours at their recently approved new store at the Tadley border (“we are not confident of success, but decided to object on the grounds of noise and disturbance, particularly to residents of older properties in the Conservation Area”); the skateboard ramp See also above); the “disappointing” WBC reaction  to our proposals for horse awareness signage in the Raghill area; a clarification about potassium iodide tablets (which are, contrary to what was recently reported in the Newbury Weekly News, not available for local residents in the event of a nuclear incident at AWE; and the “final pass” at the 2022-23 budget, remaining unchanged at £13,500 – the PC “would like to remind parishioners that this is considerably lower than other parishes of similar size.” 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 Bradfield Parish Council took place on 7 December 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 Beenham Parish Council took place on 6 December 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 details of Beenham’s Community Plan.

• The most recent meeting of Padworth Parish Council took place on 10 January and you can read the minutes here.  Items covered included: the bus shelter; financial matters; planning matters; Thames Water; footpaths; and heritage sites. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Stratfield Mortimer Parish Council took place on 11 November and you can read the minutes hereTo see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• See this page on Stratfield Mortimer PC’s website for more information on the refresh of its neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Burghfield Parish Council took place on 7 October and you can read the draft minutes hereTo see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Englefield Parish Council took place on 29 September (even though they say 29 June at the top) and you can read the minutes hereTo see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas, please click here.

• Theale area council contacts

Parishes: Theale Parish CouncilAldermaston Parish CouncilPadworth Parish CouncilStratfield Mortimer Parish Council, Englefield Parish CouncilBeenham Parish CouncilBradfield Parish Council and Burghfield Parish Council.

West Berkshire Council: click here to visit the website.

Thursday 6 January 2022

This week’s news

Theale District Councillor Alan Macro has recently published his latest residents’ newsletter, which you can read here. As well as listing local planning applications (see also below) he also refers to a planned cycle and footpath link between the proposed Lakeside housing site and Station Road.

• Click here to read the January 2022 Padworth Newsletter which, as ever, also has information from neighbouring parishes.

• Also a January 2022 issue of the Aldermaston Parish Council newsletter has just been released which covers various topics such as; reviews of the recent skate ramp survey and other planning permissions, as well as a response to feedback regarding electric vehicle charging points.

• The Benefice of Aldermaston and Woolhampton published its final Parish Magazine for 2021, which also covers local events in January 2022.

• As reported by BBC News, Bradfield College’s plans to change Church of St Andrew, Bradfield into a study centre for pupils was approved by West Berkshire Council. The plans would see the Grade II* listed 14th Century church adapted to include “a library, seminar rooms, presentation space and refreshment area” plus would see the “addition of fans which will be hung from existing rafters and beams in the main part of the church to recirculate warm air back down to ground level to offset the leak-prone nature of the building”. However, the plans do also include “removing some grave headstones” in the church’s graveyard.

Englefield Estate became the first private landowner in England to provide funding for places on the Prince’s Countryside Fund’s Farm Resilience Programme to support 14 of the estate’s tenant farmers. Further information on the Prince’s programme, and how it can benefit UK farmers who have taken actions to “generate environmental benefits and reduce carbon emissions” can be found in a FarmingUK article.

• Green bin (garden and food waste) collection service has been “temporarily suspend” by West Berkshire Council until 8 January, with resumption of the services starting again from Monday 10 January.

• Local non-league football side Burghfield FC announced a newly-designed badge, with club chairman Luke Bishop explaining on the club’s website “we wanted a badge that represented the village, and choosing the Burghfield Bell – with it’s history going back many years -–we feel this does just that”. Further descriptions and meaning behind the change to the club’s crest have also been explained via the website post, which followed the logo reveal on Twitter at 6pm on 5 January.

• A mortimervillage.org.uk article has announced that the Lunch Club has been postponed until 24 February because of concerns regarding the recent spread of the Covid Omicron variant.

Thames Valley Police and Crimes Commissioner, Matthew Barber, is asking residents across the Thames Valley area for their opinions for the 2022/23 Police Budget. An online survey can be responded to before the deadline of 5pm on Tuesday 18 January. Matthew Barber has stated the importance of any responses by saying “giving us your feedback, you can help shape decisions about police funding and how Thames Valley Police can continue to work to keep us all safe.”

• If any of our readers have children who wish to learn about computer programming and coding, then they can sign up for a free 12 week online course with West Berkshire Libraries. Applications to attend the course must be sent before Monday 10 January.

• Mortimer-based artist Peter Driver is using his artistic skills to fundraise for Sue Ryder Duchess of Kent Hospice and Reading Refugee Support Group, all in memory of his daughter Alice who sadly passed away aged 28 due to complications involving a brain tumour. As reported by InYourArea, “Peter’s charity prints are made in his studio in Sulhamstead using the oldest form of printmaking, woodcut, in which a design is carved into the surface of a wooden block.” Donations can be made by purchasing Peter’s artwork, with further details and updates on his website.

• Burghfield Parish Council (along with ‘Skate Park Working Party’) would like to learn the opinions of locals towards the Burghfield Skate Park Refurbishment Project. They’ve asked anyone interested in the project to respond to an online survey before Sunday 9 January.

Plans in Theale

• The above-mentioned Alan Macro’s most recent newsletter, which you can read here, includes (at the end) a list of all the live planning applications in Theale. These may be near where you live in which case you have a legitimate interest in what’s proposed. West Berkshire Council no longer sends letters to neighbours when there’s a planning application so, if you happen to miss the orange notices on the relevant site, checking online is the only reliable way to discover what is proposed before it’s too later to try to do anything about it.

Currently there are 12 live applications which include the usual wide range of issues. Some concern the proposed removal or amendment of conditions for existing applications (which can be significant), concerning for example landscaping or tree works. There are also proposed demolitions, extensions, new builds and access roads. Many of these are minor and not the kind of things you’d ever notice or care about: however, anything that happens next door or across the road can have an immediate and lasting consequence. You may not want to try to change the application, or even be able to do so, but at least a resource like this means that you can’t say you didn’t know about it.

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 Theale Parish Council took place on 8 November and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: support for the parish magazine; repairs around the parish; the environmental working party; Theale in Bloom 2022; one planning application and two decisions; financial matters; and revisions to the council’s policies. 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 Aldermaston Parish Council took place on 14 December and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: a presentation from the MoD Police on its SCAN (scan, check and notify) initiative; the results of the recent consultation on replacing the skateboard ramp (“overwhelming support (over 80%) for such a feature provided: (i) it is funded by grants rather than our own revenues (ii) it is of simple design and (iii) it is located on the far side of the Recreation ground (well away from the pub)  we note this strong support, but wish to investigate maintenance and end-of-life costs before giving the project our final blessing.”; three planning decisions; EV charging points opposed by residents of Ravenswing; and the 2022-23 budget (“proposed expenditure closely matches income, so it is unlikely that we will seek an increase to our current precept of £13,500, though a final decision will be made at our January meeting.”) 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 Bradfield Parish Council took place on 7 December and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the Village Hall; hedge cutting; planning matters; a possible enforcement issue near The Beacon; Travellers Rest Farm; parking in Southend Road; the 2022-23 budget; the jubilee; highways; flooding; dog bins; one new bench; two new defibrillators; three new cherry trees; the Christmas lights; and public footpaths. 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 Beenham Parish Council took place on 6 December and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the proposed development at The Clock Tower; a councillor vacancy; planning matters; rats in the pre-school play area; a proposed safeguarding policy; replacement fire doors at the school; the greening campaign; footpath repairs; speeding; maintenance and repair works around the parish; financial matters; and a late payer. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• Click here for details of Beenham’s Community Plan.

• The most recent meeting of Padworth Parish Council took place on 15 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.

• The most recent meeting of Stratfield Mortimer Parish Council took place on 11 November and you can read the minutes hereTo see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• See this page on Stratfield Mortimer PC’s website for more information on the refresh of its neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Burghfield Parish Council took place on 7 October and you can read the draft minutes hereTo see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Englefield Parish Council took place on 29 September (even though they say 29 June at the top) and you can read the minutes hereTo see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas, please click here.

Thursday 23 December 2021

A look back at 2021

We’ve covered a lot of stories in this area in 2021, several on more than one occasion as things have changed or new facts come to light. We’ve listed and summarised a handful of these below. More information can be found by searching for the respective phrases in this post (and any for coverage of this area for earlier periods, which will be linked to at the foot of the post). 

Stories covered this year include: a troublesome ramp in Aldermaston and a village hall in Bradfield, a new recreation area and fire station in Theale, paused library discussions in Burghfield, a farewell from Torak the wolf in Beenham and swarming bees in Englefield’s graveyard.

This week’s news

• Aldermaston Parish Council‘s December Newsletter has been released and features various topics including; new skate ramp, Lidl planning application, speeding and updates regarding local services over the festive period.

• Click here to read the December and January 2022 Padworth Newsletter which, as ever, also has information from neighbouring parishes.

• Green bin (garden and food waste) collection service has been “temporarily suspend” by West Berkshire Council between 28 December till 8 January, with resumption of the services starting again from Monday 10 January. The council explained the reasoning behind the suspension as needing to “free up more drivers and operatives to ensure your rubbish (black bin) and recycling (green boxes and bag) service continues as scheduled throughout the busy Christmas period and into the New Year.”

• Our congratulations to ex-Bradfield College student Lauren Bell, who was named in England’s 12 player Women’s A Squad for the Ashes cricket tour in 2022.

• Englefield Estate has a snowman trail throughout “the estate-owned woodlands near Mortimer, Burghfield Common and Mortimer West End”, as reported by Newbury Today. The wooden snowmen were designed by local school-children from “Burghfield St Mary’s Primary School, Garland Junior School, Mrs Bland’s Infant and Nursery School, Mortimer St Mary’s Junior School, Mortimer St John’s Infant School, Silchester Primary School, and Sulhamstead and Ufton Nervet Primary School.” A virtual map can be viewed on the Estate’s website, as well as further information on the trail and a map to download for those that would prefer to trek the trail with a physical map to hand.

• Another woodlands trail can be followed starting “by the Newt Pond on Goring Lane in Burghfield” with a pre-historic twist. Keep an eye out for 10 dinosaurs through the woodlands, but don’t worry these ones don’t bite… At most you may get a paper cut for getting too close.

• Mortimer-based artist Peter Driver is using his artistic skills to fundraise for Sue Ryder Duchess of Kent Hospice and Reading Refugee Support Group, all in memory of his daughter Alice who sadly passed away aged 28 due to complications involving a brain tumour. As reported by InYourArea, “Peter’s charity prints are made in his studio in Sulhamstead using the oldest form of printmaking, woodcut, in which a design is carved into the surface of a wooden block.” Donations can be made by purchasing Peter’s artwork, with further details and updates on his website.

• If you weren’t able to attend Holy Trinity Church, Theale Candlelight Service on 19 December, or just wish to re-live the festive event, then you can watch their YouTube video of the service.

• All of St Mary’s Church, Burghfield Christmas services have been moved online because of “ongoing increase in covid-19 cases locally”. All Zoom meeting links can be found in a Facebook post from the Church dated on 17 December.

• Burghfield Parish Council (along with ‘Skate Park Working Party’) would like to learn the opinions of locals towards the Burghfield Skate Park Refurbishment Project. They’ve asked anyone interested in the project to respond to an online survey before 9 January 2022.

• Further planning in Theale was shared on 1 December by Alan Macro for a “shared cycle/pedestrian way between two and a half and three metres wide.” The planning reference is 21/02986/COND3 with further information to be found here. You can also see the recent amendments to a previously accepted plan for ‘the lakeside site‘.

• The Benefice of Aldermaston and Woolhampton has published its final Parish Magazine for 2021, which covers local news and events from December 2021 to January 2022.

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 Theale Parish Council took place on 8 November and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: support for the parish magazine; repairs around the parish; the environmental working party; Theale in Bloom 2022; one planning application and two decisions; financial matters; and revisions to the council’s policies. 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 Aldermaston Parish Council took place on 14 December and you’ll be able to download the minutes here in due course. Items covered included: a presentation from the MoD Police on its SCAN (scan, check and notify) initiative; the results of the recent consultation on replacing the skateboard ramp (“overwhelming support (over 80%) for such a feature provided: (i) it is funded by grants rather than our own revenues (ii) it is of simple design and (iii) it is located on the far side of the Recreation ground (well away from the pub)  we note this strong support, but wish to investigate maintenance and end-of-life costs before giving the project our final blessing.”; three planning decisions; EV charging points opposed by residents of Ravenswing; and the 2022-23 budget (“proposed expenditure closely matches income, so it is unlikely that we will seek an increase to our current precept of £13,500, though a final decision will be made at our January meeting.”) 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 Beenham Parish Council took place on 6 December and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the proposed development at The Clock Tower; a councillor vacancy; planning matters; rats in the pre-school play area; a proposed safeguarding policy; replacement fire doors at the school; the greening campaign; footpath repairs; speeding; maintenance and repair works around the parish; financial matters; and a late payer. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• Click here for details of Beenham’s Community Plan.

• The most recent meeting of Padworth Parish Council took place on 15 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.

• The most recent meeting of Stratfield Mortimer Parish Council took place on 11 November and you can read the minutes hereTo see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• See this page on Stratfield Mortimer PC’s website for more information on the refresh of its neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Bradfield Parish Council took place on 2 November and you can read the minutes hereTo 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 Burghfield Parish Council took place on 7 October and you can read the draft minutes hereTo see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Englefield Parish Council took place on 29 September (even though they say 29 June at the top) and you can read the minutes hereTo see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas, please click here.

Thursday 16 December 2021

This week’s news

Aldermaston Parish Council‘s December Newsletter has been released and features various topics including; new skate ramp, Lidl planning application, speeding and updates regarding local services over the festive period.

• Click here to read the December and January 2022 Padworth Newsletter which, as ever, also has information from neighbouring parishes.

• Saturday 18 December is the last day of West Berkshire Council’s free bus travel days, in association with Reading Buses, Stagecoach Hampshire and Thames Travel. Please see further details, which include what bus routes within West Berks are applicable to the offer.

• Burghfield Parish Council (along with ‘Skate Park Working Party’) would like to learn the opinions of locals towards the Burghfield Skate Park Refurbishment Project. They’ve asked anyone interested in the project to respond to an online survey before 9 January 2022.

• St Mary’s Church, Burghfield held its Christmas Tree Festival last weekend (11 and 12 December) and you can watch a virtual tour of the church which shows off all of the festive decorations throughout the church.

• Congratulations to Burghfield FC Sunday First team for advancing through to the Second Round of the FA Sunday Cup, which is the largest ‘Sunday-League’ knockout tournament in England. As reported by Newbury Today, the Blues won 4-3 against Singh Sabha Slough with a very late winning goal. Their next match in the competition will be held on Sunday 16 January 2022 vs. Banstead Rovers “with the tie to take place at the 1878 stadium and it will be a 1pm kick-off.”

Further planning within Theale was shared on 1 December by Alan Macro for a “shared cycle/pedestrian way between two and a half and three metres wide.” The planning reference is 21/02986/COND3 with further information to be found here. You can also see the recent amendments to a previously accepted plan for ‘the lakeside site‘.

• The Benefice of Aldermaston and Woolhampton has published its final Parish Magazine for 2021, which covers local news and events from December 2021 to January 2022.

• District Councillor Graham Bridgman’s latest newsletter reports that 1st Burghfield and Sulhamstead Scouts has confirmed that its solar installation has been completed and that they now wait “with bated breath” to see how much power this generates.

• The same newsletter also reports on much less good news about “the wanton destruction of trees in the St Marys’ cemetery” in Stratfield Mortimer. Action is being taken.

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 Theale Parish Council took place on 8 November and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: support for the parish magazine; repairs around the parish; the environmental working party; Theale in Bloom 2022; one planning application and two decisions; financial matters; and revisions to the council’s policies. 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 Aldermaston Parish Council took place on 14 December and you’ll be able to download the minutes here in due course. Items covered included: a presentation from the MoD Police on its SCAN (scan, check and notify) initiative; the results of the recent consultation on replacing the skateboard ramp (“overwhelming support (over 80%) for such a feature provided: (i) it is funded by grants rather than our own revenues (ii) it is of simple design and (iii) it is located on the far side of the Recreation ground (well away from the pub)  we note this strong support, but wish to investigate maintenance and end-of-life costs before giving the project our final blessing.”; three planning decisions; EV charging points opposed by residents of Ravenswing; and the 2022-23 budget (“proposed expenditure closely matches income, so it is unlikely that we will seek an increase to our current precept of £13,500, though a final decision will be made at our January meeting.”) 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 Padworth Parish Council took place on 15 November and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: two new councillors; the village show; a grant application from the Mill Lane Group; the village’s water supply; repairs to the playground; speeding; financial matters; the traveller’s site at Four House’s Corner; the allotments; the Christmas tree; planning applications; and tree planting. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Stratfield Mortimer Parish Council took place on 11 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.

• See this page on Stratfield Mortimer PC’s website for more information on the refresh of its neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Bradfield Parish Council took place on 2 November 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 Beenham Parish Council took place on 1 November 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 details of Beenham’s Community Plan.

• The most recent meeting of Burghfield Parish Council took place on 7 October and you can read the draft minutes hereTo see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Englefield Parish Council took place on 29 September (even though they say 29 June at the top) and you can read the minutes hereTo see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas, please click here.

Thursday 9 December 2021

This week’s news

• Click here to read the December and January 2022 Padworth Newsletter which, as ever, also has information from neighbouring parishes.

• As reported last week, a new planning application has been made in Theale, which provides an amendment to a previously accepted plan for ‘the lakeside site‘. As noted by District Councillor Alan Macro on Facebook the main changes to the original plans include an “increase in the number of houses proposed to be built at the end of St Ives Close from seven to nine” and “part of the site behind the houses in The Green is now proposed to be the third phase. This area was originally to be developed in the second phase.”

• Also, further planning was shared on 1 December by Alan Macro for a “shared cycle/pedestrian way between two and a half and three metres wide.” The planning reference is 21/02986/COND3 with further information to be found here.

Photos of Theale’s Holy Trinity Church light display show the impressive skill and scale of the work done by local resident Declan Watts. From the multi-coloured lighting beamed upon the church to create a burning bush display, all the displays were well-received by locals both online and visiting from Theale Christmas fayre and light switch-on event on 4 December.

• The Benefice of Aldermaston and Woolhampton have published its final Parish Magazine for 2021, which covers local news and events throughout December 2021 to January 2022.

• District Councillor Graham Bridgman’s latest newsletter reports that 1st Burghfield and Sulhamstead Scouts has confirmed that its solar installation has been completed and that they now wait “with bated breath” to see how much power this generates.

• The same newsletter also reports on much less good news about “the wanton destruction of trees in the St Marys’ cemetery” in Stratfield Mortimer. Action is being taken.

• Last chance for Aldermaston and neighbouring residents to answer a survey regarding plans to potentially replace the recently removed skate ramp in the village. You can also see the Aldermaston Parish Council November newsletter which mentions the discussion about the skate ramp made at October’s parish council meeting. The survey closes on Friday 10 December.

• You can view Theale’s new Community Fire Station in this update on their “state of the art” station, as well as a virtual tour around the buildings and facilities. On the tour, you see the community room, which is now available for booking.

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 Theale Parish Council took place on 8 November and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: support for the parish magazine; repairs around the parish; the environmental working party; Theale in Bloom 2022; one planning application and two decisions; financial matters; and revisions to the council’s policies. 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 Padworth Parish Council took place on 15 November and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: two new councillors; the village show; a grant application from the Mill Lane Group; the village’s water supply; repairs to the playground; speeding; financial matters; the traveller’s site at Four House’s Corner; the allotments; the Christmas tree; planning applications; and tree planting. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Stratfield Mortimer Parish Council took place on 11 November and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the office lease; speeding; Mortimer Lunch Club; a contribution to the West Berkshire Library Service; CIL payments; hedge maintenance; updates to SMPC’s website; committee and working group reports; the jubilee; the Climate and Environment Working Party’s terms of reference; NHS blue for the phone box; extending the cemetery; financial matters; planning matters; and tree planting. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• See this page on Stratfield Mortimer PC’s website for more information on the refresh of its neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Aldermaston Parish Council took place on 9 November and you’ll be able to download the minutes here in due course. Items covered included: a suggestion about the skateboard ramp; one planning application; the Thames Valley Police Community Speedwatch scheme (APC decided not to participate as “it would be too dangerous to expect volunteers to stand by the busy A340 taking a video and details of offending vehicles. We will assist the police, however, in interpreting the results they obtain as the Traffic Monitoring Equipment we have recently acquired has confirmed that speeding is an issue in the parish); a leak in the lock-up; possible locations of EV charge points; and a “first pass” at the 2022-23 budget. 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 Bradfield Parish Council took place on 2 November and you can read the minutes here. items covered included: the village hall (see separate section above); a large number of planning applications; an almost equally large number of planning enforcement issues; hedge cutting; drains; a report from District Councillor Ross Mackinnon; the jubilee; financial matters; the scarecrow trail; and the possible resumption of use of the committee room. 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 Beenham Parish Council took place on 1 November 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 details of Beenham’s Community Plan.

• The most recent meeting of Burghfield Parish Council took place on 7 October and you can read the draft minutes hereTo see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Englefield Parish Council took place on 29 September (even though they say 29 June at the top) and you can read the minutes hereTo see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas, please click here.

Thursday 2 December 2021

This week’s news

• A new planning application has been made in Theale, which provides an amendment to a previously accepted plan for ‘the lakeside site‘. As noted by District Councillor Alan Macro on Facebook the main changes to the original plans include an “increase in the number of houses proposed to be built at the end of St Ives Close from seven to nine” and “part of the site behind the houses in The Green is now proposed to be the third phase. This area was originally to be developed in the second phase.”

• Those attending Theale’s Christmas Fayre and lights switch-on event on Saturday 4 December may also want to keep an eye out for Holy Trinity Church, Theale as it will also be illuminated with festive lights. The light show upon the church is the work of Declan Watts (must be in the name…) who posted to Facebook to say “this year I am going all out adding more specialist lighting and lighting up more of the church and surrounding grounds.”

• Theale Primary School student Isabelle won a poster competition from Public Protection Partnership which asked: “local school children to design some eye-catching posters to remind dog owners to ‘pick-up’ after their dogs.” Theale Parish Council congratulated Isabelle via Facebook and said that the posters can be found at “recreation ground and North Street Playing Fields.”

• Bad luck to Burghfield St Mary’s C of E Primary School, which saw their roof damaged in Saturday’s strong winds and storms. This lead to the closure of the school on 29 November, however, the roof was fixed and deemed “safe for the children to be on-site” which meant their students were back in school on 30 November.

The Willink School raised a whopping 557.8kg of food and essentials for West Berks Food Bank recently. The donation will provide 1171 meals for those struggling with food costs in West Berkshire, which equates to 56 people being able to have 3 meals a day for 7 days.

• Mortimer Methodist Church is looking for any donations towards their Christmas Toy Service on Sunday 5 December. The appeal is in aid of Berkshire Women’s Aid who work to support those suffering from domestic violence. Any gifts for young ones, or indeed their Mums, can be donated to the church either on Saturday 4 December (between 10am to noon) and 5 December for the service (starting from 10.30am).

• The opportunity for local residents to have their say on Theale’s new play and multi-use sports area has closed on 24 November 2021, as announced on Facebook by Theale Parish Council. For future updates on the sports and play area, please see the council’s Facebook page.

• You can view Theale’s new Community Fire Station in this update on their “state of the art” station, as well as a virtual tour around the buildings and facilities. On the tour, you see the community room, which is now available for booking.

• Aldermaston Parish Council (APC) is still asking for local and neighbouring residents to answer a survey regarding plans to potentially replace the recently removed skate ramp in the village. You can also see the APC November newsletter which mentions the discussion about the skate ramp made at October’s parish council meeting.

Beyond the borders

Few people know better than we do how demanding it is to produce a regular newsletter. Many parish councils do this as well. Hats must be doffed to Cold Ash which manages to produce one every Thursday, on the nail. In many ways the most impressive one is Padworth’s. The most recent one is 18 pages long and has a good deal of local information and articles. What’s particularly good about it is that it recognises the existence of a world beyond the parish borders and includes reports for the meetings of neighbouring parishes including Beenham and Aldermaston, many of whose decisions will have an impact on Padworth.

No publication issued in December would be complete without some excruciating Christmas jokes and in this regard Padworth’s editor doesn’t disappoint. How did Mary and Joseph know Jesus’ weight when he was born? What did the stamp say to the Christmas card? Which playwright was terrified of Christmas? These are just a few of them. If you want to know the answers, I’m not going to steal the editor’s – you’ll have to click here to find out for yourself.

All parish magazines are of great importance. Much of the area is in a news vacuum for print publications – which we do our best to fill – and it’s important that verifiable and relevant information is provided to residents. The alternative is to rely on social media for news which doesn’t really work, as countless recent examples have proved. If you have one in your village, support it. That doesn’t mean, of course, that you shouldn’t also read Penny Post

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 Theale Parish Council took place on 8 November and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: support for the parish magazine; repairs around the parish; the environmental working party; Theale in Bloom 2022; one planning application and two decisions; financial matters; and revisions to the council’s policies. 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 Padworth Parish Council took place on 15 November and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: two new councillors; the village show; a grant application from the Mill Lane Group; the village’s water supply; repairs to the playground; speeding; financial matters; the traveller’s site at Four House’s Corner; the allotments; the Christmas tree; planning applications; and tree planting. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Stratfield Mortimer Parish Council took place on 11 November and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the office lease; speeding; Mortimer Lunch Club; a contribution to the West Berkshire Library Service; CIL payments; hedge maintenance; updates to SMPC’s website; committee and working group reports; the jubilee; the Climate and Environment Working Party’s terms of reference; NHS blue for the phone box; extending the cemetery; financial matters; planning matters; and tree planting. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• See this page on Stratfield Mortimer PC’s website for more information on the refresh of its neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Aldermaston Parish Council took place on 9 November and you’ll be able to download the minutes here in due course. Items covered included: a suggestion about the skateboard ramp; one planning application; the Thames Valley Police Community Speedwatch scheme (APC decided not to participate as “it would be too dangerous to expect volunteers to stand by the busy A340 taking a video and details of offending vehicles. We will assist the police, however, in interpreting the results they obtain as the Traffic Monitoring Equipment we have recently acquired has confirmed that speeding is an issue in the parish); a leak in the lock-up; possible locations of EV charge points; and a “first pass” at the 2022-23 budget. 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 Bradfield Parish Council took place on 2 November and you can read the minutes here. items covered included: the village hall (see separate section above); a large number of planning applications; an almost equally large number of planning enforcement issues; hedge cutting; drains; a report from District Councillor Ross Mackinnon; the jubilee; financial matters; the scarecrow trail; and the possible resumption of use of the committee room. 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 Beenham Parish Council took place on 1 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.

• Click here for details of Beenham’s Community Plan.

• The most recent meeting of Burghfield Parish Council took place on 7 October and you can read the draft minutes hereTo see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Englefield Parish Council took place on 29 September (even though they say 29 June at the top) and you can read the minutes hereTo see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas, please click here.

Thursday 25 November 2021

This week’s news

• Congratulations to Burghfield St Mary’s CoE Primary School who raised £370 for Children in Need over the past two weeks. Donations can still be added to the pot via the School Gateway until the end of November.

• Burghfield St Mary’s CoE Primary School have also been preparing for their upcoming Christmas fayre (see events sections below for further details) by decorating their Christmas tree, along with much help from parents of pupils at the school. They have also asked for voluntary support with the running of their festive fayre. If anyone is able to offer their support for the event, they can sign their name onto a ‘sign-up sheet’ which will be “in the front lay-by in the mornings and on the school playground at pick up time”.

• Even more news from Burghfield Primary, about their brand new environmental lodge which the school hopes will provide “a base from which our pupils can get involved in outdoor learning and play through gardening, creating bug hotels and working to raise awareness of being environmentally friendly.” They also thanked pupils, parents, local community and companies for their support in making the plan of building the lodge into a reality.

• The opportunity for local residents to have their say on Theale’s new play and multi-use sports area has closed on 24 November 2021, as announced on Facebook by Theale Parish Council. For future updates on the sports and play area, please see the council’s Facebook page.

• You can view Theale’s new Community Fire Station in this update on their “state of the art” station, as well as a virtual tour around the buildings and facilities. On the tour, you see the community room, which is now available for booking.

• Aldermaston Parish Council (APC) is still asking for local and neighbouring residents to answer a survey regarding plans to potentially replace the recently removed skate ramp in the village. You can also see the APC November newsletter which mentions the discussion about the skate ramp made at October’s parish council meeting.

• Click here to read the November Padworth Newsletter which, as ever, also has information from neighbouring parishes.

Bradfield’s Hall

Bradfield Parish Council’s (BPC’s) meeting on 2 November included a lengthy statement on the subject of the Village Hall. The plans for the renovation of this seem to have been the subject of some disagreement in the community. The meeting was also told that some parishioners have expressed “frustration in the lack of transparency of the Village Hall Management Committee” and that statements “have previously been made by the Hall Committee which have been untrue.” As usual, money (or the possible lack of it) was involved as well. I’m not quite sure what the issues are but they well echo those felt by many other parish councils which are constantly grappling with maintaining or renovating buildings which are generally patched up according to the most pressing need and what money is available rather than subjected to any regular maintenance programme. Many will also have sugared by being empty for the best part of the last 18 months.

The statement can be read in full on pp1 and 2 of the meeting minutes. A couple of extracts from these suggest the nature of the problems and uncertainties that now seem to beset the project.

“There will be a delay in work on the Village Hall to raise additional funds. Whilst there was a lot of confidence at the public meeting some of this appears to have waned. BPC has identified concerns over the viability of the project and believes it is acting in the best interests of the community.

“In the existing hall, the roof has been repaired and the wiring replaced, however, the boiler has now failed, and the drains only have an expected life of three years. There has been no mention of a contingency plan or plan B for the hall to operate safely. It was questioned whether BPC should continue trying to negotiate or whether they should take action and lead.”

All villages need to have a functioning village hall that can provide a valuable centre and focus for community activities. We wish Bradfield well in achieving this goal.

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 Theale Parish Council took place on 8 November and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: support for the parish magazine; repairs around the parish; the environmental working party; Theale in Bloom 2022; one planning application and two decisions; financial matters; and revisions to the council’s policies. 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 Padworth Parish Council took place on 15 November and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: two new councillors; the village show; a grant application from the Mill Lane Group; the village’s water supply; repairs to the playground; speeding; financial matters; the traveller’s site at Four House’s Corner; the allotments; the Christmas tree; planning applications; and tree planting. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Aldermaston Parish Council took place on 9 November and you’ll be able to download the minutes here in due course. Items covered included: a suggestion about the skateboard ramp; one planning application; the Thames Valley Police Community Speedwatch scheme (APC decided not to participate as “it would be too dangerous to expect volunteers to stand by the busy A340 taking a video and details of offending vehicles. We will assist the police, however, in interpreting the results they obtain as the Traffic Monitoring Equipment we have recently acquired has confirmed that speeding is an issue in the parish); a leak in the lock-up; possible locations of EV charge points; and a “first pass” at the 2022-23 budget. 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 Bradfield Parish Council took place on 2 November and you can read the minutes here. items covered included: the village hall (see separate section above); a large number of planning applications; an almost equally large number of planning enforcement issues; hedge cutting; drains; a report from District Councillor Ross Mackinnon; the jubilee; financial matters; the scarecrow trail; and the possible resumption of use of the committee room. 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 Beenham Parish Council took place on 1 November and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: proposed footpath improvements; a poor mobile signal; Greener Beenham’s bench; overgrown road signs; a vacancy for a councillor; planning applications; bridleway signage; repairs and maintenance work around the parish; financial matters; and the draft 2022-23 budget. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• Click here for details of Beenham’s Community Plan.

• The most recent meeting of Stratfield Mortimer Parish Council took place on 14 October and you can read the minutes hereTo see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• See this page on Stratfield Mortimer PC’s website for more information on the refresh of its neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Burghfield Parish Council took place on 7 October and you can read the draft minutes hereTo see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Englefield Parish Council took place on 29 September (even though they say 29 June at the top) and you can read the minutes hereTo see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas, please click here.

Thursday 18 November 2021

This week’s news

• This week’s NWN reports on p4 that Torak, the oldest canine inhabitant at the Wolf Conservation Trust (UKWCT) in Beenham, has died. the headline describes the 15-year-old as an “escape wolf” after he broke out in 2018 but was recaptured without causing any damage. We spoke to Lynne Buckland from the UKWCT who had hand-reared him. “What a gentle giant he was,” she recalled. “I remember him walking past a field of sheep and not batting an eyelid.” This is a temptation that many domesticated dogs fail to resist.

• Many images of Sunday’s Remembrance services from across West Berkshire can be found online including those held at St Mary’s Church, Burghfield and The Six Bells, Burghfield which raised £242.60 for Royal British Legion at their charity events on 14 November.

• A recent ecology report released by AWE (Atomic Weapons Establishment) in Aldermaston amidst new planning applications shows that glow worms, ancient oak trees and other wildlife are thriving. The cynics among us might question what is making these worms glow however this is still a cheerful report. See the whole story here on newburytoday.co.uk.

• You can still have your say Theale’s new play and multi-use sports area by completing this survey. Both of Theale’s schools (Theale Primary and Theale Green) will be “involved in dedicated consultation next week” as announced on Theale Parish Council’s facebook page.

• There will be the opportunity for the public to meet members of Theale’s new fire station, plus their fire engine, on Sunday 21 November between noon to 2pm at Holy Trinity Church, Theale.

• You can view Theale’s new Community Fire Station in this update on their “state of the art” station, as well as a virtual tour around the buildings and facilities. On the tour, you see the community room, which is now available for booking.

Bradfield College have recently installed EV charging points in their staff car park, in order for the school to follow its ‘2025 Strategy‘ where the school recognises its environmental responsibilities.

• Aldermaston Parish Council (APC) is asking for local and neighbouring residents to answer a survey regarding plans to potentially replace the recently removed skate ramp in the village. You can also see the APC November newsletter which mentions the discussion about the skate ramp made at October’s parish council meeting.

• Families and pupils at Burghfield St Mary’s CoE Primary School donated over 600 food tins towards West Berkshire Food Bank, as can be seen, displayed as a pyramid of tins in a photo published onto the school’s Facebook page.

• Click here to read the November Padworth Newsletter which, as ever, also has information from neighbouring parishes.

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 Theale Parish Council took place on 8 November and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: support for the parish magazine; repairs around the parish; the environmental working party; Theale in Bloom 2022; one planning application and two decisions; financial matters; and revisions to the council’s policies. 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 Padworth Parish Council took place on 15 November and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: two new councillors; the village show; a grant application from the Mill Lane Group; the village’s water supply; repairs to the playground; speeding; financial matters; the traveller’s site at Four House’s Corner; the allotments; the Christmas tree; planning applications; and tree planting. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Aldermaston Parish Council took place on 9 November and you’ll be able to download the minutes here in due course. Items covered included: a suggestion about the skateboard ramp; one planning application; the Thames Valley Police Community Speedwatch scheme (APC decided not to participate as “it would be too dangerous to expect volunteers to stand by the busy A340 taking a video and details of offending vehicles. We will assist the police, however, in interpreting the results they obtain as the Traffic Monitoring Equipment we have recently acquired has confirmed that speeding is an issue in the parish); a leak in the lock-up; possible locations of EV charge points; and a “first pass” at the 2022-23 budget. 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 Beenham Parish Council took place on 1 November and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: proposed footpath improvements; a poor mobile signal; Greener Beenham’s bench; overgrown road signs; a vacancy for a councillor; planning applications; bridleway signage; repairs and maintenance work around the parish; financial matters; and the draft 2022-23 budget. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• Click here for details of Beenham’s Community Plan.

• The most recent meeting of Stratfield Mortimer Parish Council took place on 14 October and you can read the minutes here. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• See this page on Stratfield Mortimer PC’s website for more information on the refresh of its neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Burghfield Parish Council took place on 7 October and you can read the draft minutes hereTo see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Bradfield Parish Council took place on 5 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, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Englefield Parish Council took place on 29 September (even though they say 29 June at the top) and you can read the minutes hereTo see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas, please click here.

Thursday 11 November 2021

This week’s news

• A planning application has been made by Plymouth Brethren which would see a new Gospel Hall in Burghfield. Newbury Today highlighted the plans in an article, with a single-storey barn building proposed to be build upon “pasture land bounded by Shortheath Lane to the north west, Hollybush Lane to the east and open countryside to the south.”

Newbury Today has published many wonderful photos of Friends of Pangbourne Primary School fireworks fiesta event which happened 6 November 2021. According to the article, nearly £10,000 was raised at the event which will be donated to the Primary School and help fund future improvements and projects.

• You can make your opinions on Theale Parish Councils’ plans for their new play and multi-use sports area heard by completing this survey. Both of Theale’s schools (Theale Primary and Theale Green) will be “involved in dedicated consultation next week” as announced by the council on Facebook. Anyone can speak to councillors about any plans at John Cumber Hall between 10am to noon on Saturday 13 November 2021.

• Theale’s new Community Fire Station has provided a further update on their “state of the art” station, as well as a virtual tour around the buildings and facilities. On the tour, you see the community room, which will be available for booking from Monday 15 November. The Fire Authority’s Lead Member for Strategic Assets, Councillor Angus Ross, is quoted in the posted update to say that they are “delighted that the Community Room will now be available for booking for use by local residents, bringing the Fire Service closer to the community it serves.”

• More life-saving equipment has been added in the Theale area, as the clubhouse for Burghfield Community Sports Association displayed its newly installed defibrillator. Many fund-raising efforts were made to acquire the equipment, which will provide locals with much needed safety should the defib ever be needed in an emergency. 

Click here to read the November Padworth Newsletter which, as ever, also has information from neighbouring parishes.

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 Theale Parish Council took place on 5 October and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: a meeting with representatives from Ridgepoint Homes; reports from the committees and working groups; planning matters; financial matters; bulb planting; tree and hedge maintenance; the design for the MUSA/playground; and god fouling. 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 Aldermaston Parish Council took place on 9 November and you’ll be able to download the minutes here in due course. Items covered included: a suggestion about the skateboard ramp; one planning application; the Thames Valley Police Community Speedwatch scheme (APC decided not to participate as “it would be too dangerous to expect volunteers to stand by the busy A340 taking a video and details of offending vehicles. We will assist the police, however, in interpreting the results they obtain as the Traffic Monitoring Equipment we have recently acquired has confirmed that speeding is an issue in the parish); a leak in the lock-up; possible locations of EV charge points; and a “first pass” at the 2022-23 budget. 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 Stratfield Mortimer Parish Council took place on 14 October and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the co-option of a new member; the jubilee; the allotments; thanks from Tadley Citizens Advice for the recent grant; the Christmas tree; the defibrillator in the phone box; committee reports; the neighbourhood development plan; financial matters; Remembrance Day; financial matters, including a grant to WBC’s Library Service; the Mortimer to Burghfield cycleway and footpath; and planning matters. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

See this page on Stratfield Mortimer PC’s website for more information on the refresh of its neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Burghfield Parish Council took place on 7 October and you can read the draft minutes here. Items covered included: updates from District Councillors Bridgman and Longton; an update on the NDP; reports from the committees; financial matters; and Remembrance Day. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Bradfield Parish Council took place on 5 October and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: drainage and flooding; speeding; the parish poll; the new Village Hall project; maintenance issues around the parish; planning matters; the jubilee; financial matters; and comments from the Round Table. 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 Beenham Parish Council took place on 4 October and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: a bridleway notice; the Queen’s Green Canopy; an address by Greenham Trust (see section above); a vacancy on the council; planning matters; an unauthorised advertising sign; unauthorised fencing; the parish newsletter; speeding; the play area; the recreation ground; repairs and maintenance; and financial matters, including grants to the WBC Library Service, Spotlight UK and Beenham Village Events. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

Click here for details of Beenham’s Community Plan.

• The most recent meeting of Englefield Parish Council took place on 29 September (even though they say 29 June at the top) 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 Padworth Parish Council took place on 13 September and you can read the minutes here. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

Thursday 4 November 2021

This week’s news

• Theale PC has provided an update in this Facebook post regarding “planning application for 11 housing units at the end of St Ives Close“. The application for the units has been withdrawn. Ridgepoint Homes saying that there was “an issue with the form of application we submitted’ and that they “will be making a re-submission shortly.”

• Burghfield resident, Sarah Timms, has been thanked by Royal British Legion for her 15 years of dedication towards her work as a poppy appeal collector, as well as other charitable causes throughout the parish.

• As mentioned last week (see below) Theale Parish Council has professed itself “delighted” to have been awarded £100,000 in Community Infrastructure Levy funds from West Berkshire Council following a bidding process. The money will be used to provide a new play area and a multi-use sports area on Theale’s recreation ground in the next financial year.

• Louise James Head of Grants at Greenham Trust (GT) recently gave a presentation to Beenham Parish Council about the history of GT and its online fundraising platform The Good Exchange. This is part of a road trip around West Berkshire and the wards and parishes in North Hampshire that border it to explain GT’s work to those communities that can benefit from the grants it awards. This talk may well have covered some of the same ground that GT’s CEO Chris Boulton did when he addressed Hungerford Town Council earlier this month, a summary of which you can read here.

• As mentioned previously, Stratfield Mortimer decided a couple of months ago to pause the discussions into adopting its library. See the link to the September meeting in the section below for a statement on this.

• Burghclere Ladies FC is looking for players to join its new team for their debut season in the Thames Valley Counties Women’s Football League. Anyone who would be interested in getting involved can find out more information here.

• A reminder that the John Cumber Hall in Theale is now available for hire for classes, meetings and groups – contact enquiries@thealeparishcouncil.gov.uk or call 0118 930 6592 for more information.

• Padworth Parish Council’s October newsletter includes dates for future events and meetings happening throughout October in the parish.

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 Theale Parish Council took place on 5 October and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: a meeting with representatives from Ridgepoint Homes; reports from the committees and working groups; planning matters; financial matters; bulb planting; tree and hedge maintenance; the design for the MUSA/playground; and god fouling. 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 Stratfield Mortimer Parish Council took place on 14 October and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the co-option of a new member; the jubilee; the allotments; thanks from Tadley Citizens Advice for the recent grant; the Christmas tree; the defibrillator in the phone box; committee reports; the neighbourhood development plan; financial matters; Remembrance Day; financial matters, including a grant to WBC’s Library Service; the Mortimer to Burghfield cycleway and footpath; and planning matters. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• See this page on Stratfield Mortimer PC’s website for more information on the refresh of its neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Aldermaston Parish Council took place on 12 October and you can download the minutes here. Items covered included: the skateboard ramp (see separate section above); one planning application; community engagement; the parish’s resilience plan; traffic monitoring equipment; and the new footpath at Wasing Lane. 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 Burghfield Parish Council took place on 7 October and you can read the draft minutes here. Items covered included: updates from District Councillors Bridgman and Longton; an update on the NDP; reports from the committees; financial matters; and Remembrance Day. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Bradfield Parish Council took place on 5 October and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: drainage and flooding; speeding; the parish poll; the new Village Hall project; maintenance issues around the parish; planning matters; the jubilee; financial matters; and comments from the Round Table. 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 Beenham Parish Council took place on 4 October and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: a bridleway notice; the Queen’s Green Canopy; an address by Greenham Trust (see section above); a vacancy on the council; planning matters; an unauthorised advertising sign; unauthorised fencing; the parish newsletter; speeding; the play area; the recreation ground; repairs and maintenance; and financial matters, including grants to the WBC Library Service, Spotlight UK and Beenham Village Events. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• Click here for details of Beenham’s Community Plan.

• The most recent meeting of Englefield Parish Council took place on 29 September (even though they say 29 June at the top) and you can read the minutes hereTo 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 Padworth Parish Council took place on 13 September and you can read the minutes hereTo see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

Thursday 28 October 2021

This week’s news

• Theale PC has provided an update in this Facebook post regarding “planning application for 11 housing units at the end of St Ives Close“. The application for the units has been withdrawn, however, Ridgepoint Homes have been quoted in the post by TPC saying “we will be making a re-submission shortly.” This happens with planning applications sometimes: we haven’t been able to establish exactly what the issue was here.

• As mentioned last week (see below) Theale Parish Council has professed itself “delighted” to have been awarded £100,000 in Community Infrastructure Levy funds from West Berkshire Council following a bidding process. The money will be used to provide a new play area and a multi-use sports area on Theale’s recreation ground in the next financial year.

• Louise James Head of Grants at Greenham Trust (GT) recently gave a presentation to Beenham Parish Council about the history of GT and its online fundraising platform The Good Exchange. This is part of a road trip around West Berkshire and the wards and parishes in North Hampshire that border it to explain GT’s work to those communities that can benefit from the grants it awards. This talk may well have covered some of the same ground that GT’s CEO Chris Boulton did when he addressed Hungerford Town Council earlier this month, a summary of which you can read here.

• If you attended one of Theale Green School‘s open days, they are asking for feedback on the event so that they can improve future open days. Please click here to access the open day response form.

• As mentioned previously, Stratfield Mortimer decided a couple of months ago to pause the discussions into adopting its library. See the link to the September meeting in the section below for a statement on this.

• Burghclere Ladies FC is looking for players to join its new team for their debut season in the Thames Valley Counties Women’s Football League. Anyone who would be interested in getting involved can find out more information here.

• A reminder that the John Cumber Hall in Theale is now available for hire for classes, meetings and groups – contact enquiries@thealeparishcouncil.gov.uk or call 0118 930 6592 for more information.

• Padworth Parish Council’s October newsletter includes dates for future events and meetings happening throughout October in the parish.

• This week will be your last chance to send in any nominations for West Berkshire Council’s 2021 Community Champion Awards. If you know anyone whose hard work within the community should be highlighted and rewarded, then you can click here to see how you can nominate a West Berks resident. All nominations close on Monday 1 November 2021.

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 Theale Parish Council took place on 6 September and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the fire station; planning applications; dog fouling; speed restrictions; the parish magazine; a review of TPC’s policies; replacement doors and windows at the Pavilion; and a grant of £250 to Parenting Special Children. 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 Stratfield Mortimer Parish Council took place on 14 October and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the co-option of a new member; the jubilee; the allotments; thanks from Tadley Citizens Advice for the recent grant; the Christmas tree; the defibrillator in the phone box; committee reports; the neighbourhood development plan; financial matters; Remembrance Day; financial matters, including a grant to WBC’s Library Service; the Mortimer to Burghfield cycleway and footpath; and planning matters. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• See this page on Stratfield Mortimer PC’s website for more information on the refresh of its neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Aldermaston Parish Council took place on 12 October and you’ll be able to download the minutes here in due course. Items covered included: the skateboard ramp (see separate section above); one planning application; community engagement; the parish’s resilience plan; traffic monitoring equipment; and the new footpath at Wasing Lane. 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 Burghfield Parish Council took place on 7 October and you can read the draft minutes here. Items covered included: updates from District Councillors Bridgman and Longton; an update on the NDP; reports from the committees; financial matters; and Remembrance Day. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Beenham Parish Council took place on 4 October and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: a bridleway notice; the Queen’s Green Canopy; an address by Greenham Trust (see section above); a vacancy on the council; planning matters; an unauthorised advertising sign; unauthorised fencing; the parish newsletter; speeding; the play area; the recreation ground; repairs and maintenance; and financial matters, including grants to the WBC Library Service, Spotlight UK and Beenham Village Events. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• Click here for details of Beenham’s Community Plan.

• The most recent meeting of Englefield Parish Council took place on 29 September (even though they say 29 June at the top) and you can read the minutes hereTo 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 Padworth Parish Council took place on 13 September 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 Bradfield Parish Council took place on 7 September and you can read the minutes hereTo see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas, please click here.

Thursday 21 October 2021

This week’s news

• Theale PC has provided an update in this Facebook post regarding “planning application for 11 housing units at the end of St Ives Close“. The application for the units has been withdrawn, however, Ridgepoint Homes have been quoted in the post by TPC saying “we will be making a re-submission shortly.” This happens with planning applications sometimes: we haven’t been able to establish exactly what the issue was here.

Bradfield College will be joining up with St Andrew’s School, Pangbourne to create the ‘Bradfield Group’ in December 2021 following “12 months of due-diligence and talks”. The reasoning behind the creation of the group has been explained in this post by the school as offering “opportunities for sharing strategic thinking and developments in teaching and learning, for enhanced curriculum and professional development, for the improvement and better use of facilities, and for delivering cost efficiencies through economies of scale”.

• If you attended one of Theale Green School‘s open days, they are asking for feedback on the event so that they can improve future open days. Please click here to access the open day response form.

• Click here to read Councillor Graham Bridgman’s recent parish report for Burghfield and Mortimer (scroll down to the foot for the local stuff). Items covered here include rats in Burghfield, road verges, nightlines and footways in Stratfield Mortimer and Goodies Lane in Wokefield.

• As mentioned previously, Stratfield Mortimer decided a couple of months ago to pause the discussions into adopting its library. See the link to the September meeting in the section below for a statement on this.

• Burghclere Ladies FC is looking for players to join its new team for their debut season in the Thames Valley Counties Women’s Football League. Anyone who would be interested in getting involved can find out more information here.

• A reminder that the John Cumber Hall in Theale is now available for hire for classes, meetings and groups – contact enquiries@thealeparishcouncil.gov.uk or call 0118 930 6592 for more information.

• Padworth Parish Council’s October newsletter includes dates for future events and meetings happening throughout October in the parish.

• If you know anyone whose hard work within the community should be highlighted and rewarded, then please nominate them for a West Berkshire Council 2021 Community Champion Awards by Monday 1 November 2021.  Click here for the nomination form.

Theale’s CIL windfall

Theale Parish Council has professed itself “delighted” to have been awarded £100,000 in Community Infrastructure Levy funds from West Berkshire Council following a bidding process. The money will be used to provide a new play area and a multi-use sports area on Theale’s recreation ground in the next financial year.

“We are really excited to share the news that Theale Parish Council (TPC) has won a grant of £100,000 from the West Berkshire Council Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) fund,” Paul Clifford, the Chair of the Open Spaces Committee said. “Subject to relevant permissions, the TPC is planning to replace the tired-looking play area by the church and add an all-weather multi-use sports area (MUSA) to the recreation ground.

“We have outline plans for the MUSA which will include a multi-use sports court, a walking/running track, basketball hoops, outdoor gym, exercise area, table tennis, street fitness and more, all covered by security cameras. The new play area and MUSA will cater for all age ages and abilities. We would also like our local residents to have their say so our next step is to ask our parishioners for feedback on our plans before taking them to the authorities for planning permission. We aim to put the new facilities in place by April 2023. Many thanks must go to West Berkshire Council and our dedicated parish office staff for pulling together a huge amount of information to complete the application.”

He also add that TPC is “keen to improve green and social infrastructure within the village to meet the imminent expansion of the village as work on the Lakeside housing development starts.”

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 Theale Parish Council took place on 6 September and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the fire station; planning applications; dog fouling; speed restrictions; the parish magazine; a review of TPC’s policies; replacement doors and windows at the Pavilion; and a grant of £250 to Parenting Special Children. 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 Aldermaston Parish Council took place on 12 October and you’ll be able to download the minutes here in due course. Items covered included: the skateboard ramp (see separate section above); one planning application; community engagement; the parish’s resilience plan; traffic monitoring equipment; and the new footpath at Wasing Lane. 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 Burghfield Parish Council took place on 7 October and you can read the draft minutes here. Items covered included: updates from District Councillors Bridgman and Longton; an update on the NDP; reports from the committees; financial matters; and Remembrance Day. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Padworth Parish Council took place on 13 September 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 Stratfield Mortimer Parish Council took place on 9 September and you can read the minutes here. ITo see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• See this page on Stratfield Mortimer PC’s website for more information on the refresh of its neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Beenham Parish Council took place on 6 September 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 details of Beenham’s Community Plan.

• The most recent meeting of Bradfield Parish Council took place on 3 August and you can read the minutes hereTo 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 Englefield Parish Council took place on 28 June and you can read the minutes hereTo see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas, please click here.

Thursday 14 October 2021

This week’s news

Theale Community Fire Station is now operational with crews moving into the new facility: however, some are still yet to make the full transition. This post on the Royal Berkshire Fire and Rescue Service website confirms that teams have started working at the station and have claimed that “The relocation has been made possible thanks to a team effort involving staff from across the Service, led by the Capital Projects Team, who have worked effectively with the contractors on site.” You can also watch a drone (we presume) shot of the new fire station in this YouTube video which shows off the exterior of the building. As mentioned in the article, work began in January 2020 and a public opening ceremony will take place in spring 2022.

• If you attended one of Theale Green School‘s open days, they are asking for feedback on the event so that they can improve future open days. Please click here to access the open day response form.

• This week’s NWN reports on p26 that Beenham Parish Council has objected to plans to convert the Comfort inn into 34 flats.

• Click here to read Councillor Graham Bridgman’s recent parish report for Burghfield and Mortimer (scroll down to the foot for the local stuff). Items covered here include rats in Burghfield, road verges, nightlines and footways in Stratfield Mortimer and Goodies Lane in Wokefield.

• As mentioned previously, Stratfield Mortimer decided a couple of months ago to pause the discussions into adopting its library. See the link to the September meeting in the section below for a statement on this.

• Roadworks to Aldermaston Wharf Bridge will cause the bridge to be shut on 16 to 17 October 2021 between 8am to 5pm. Click on this one.network link to see more information and alternate routes.

• Burghclere Ladies FC is looking for players to join its new team for their debut season in the Thames Valley Counties Women’s Football League. Anyone who would be interested in getting involved can find out more information here.

• A reminder that the John Cumber Hall in Theale is now available for hire for classes, meetings and groups – contact enquiries@thealeparishcouncil.gov.uk or call 0118 930 6592 for more information.

• Padworth Parish Council has published its October 2021 newsletter edition, which can be found here. It includes dates for future events and meetings happening throughout October in the parish.

• Nominations for West Berkshire Council’s 2021 Community Champion Awards are now open. If you know anyone whose hard work within the community should be highlighted and rewarded, then you can click here to see how you can nominate a West Berks resident. All nominations close on Monday 1 November 2021.

• West Berkshire Council has published its tribute to Councillor Peter Argyle, who died recently.

Aldermaston’s ramp

• Over the last few months, Aldermaston Parish Council has been in the news (see sections below) because of its decision to remove the village’s skateboard ramp, something which not all residents agreed with. Here’s the latest from the notes of the APC meeting held on 12 October 2021:

“In the open forum we discussed with parishioners the possible replacement skateboard ramp at the Recreation Ground. You will recall that a joint site visit agreed that the frame of the previous ramp was rotten and we had reluctantly agreed to remove it (this has now been done). Any new ramp would be  to be located at the other side of the Rec (the Rosebourne end), and the bulk of the funding would have to come from grants. Modern ramps tend to be made of concrete, rather than wood, so their maintenance costs would be lower. One stipulation we would make is that the design ramp would have to be kept fairly simple, and that its use would be primarily by local people. Before committing to such a facility, the Parish Council would wish to gauge parishioners’ opinion, most likely through a questionnaire.”

So, residents of Aldermaston: expect a questionnaire from the PC. And, if any other PCs are having problems with deteriorating wooden ramps, get in touch with Aldermaston PC and see what they came up with by way of a replacement.

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 Theale Parish Council took place on 6 September and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the fire station; planning applications; dog fouling; speed restrictions; the parish magazine; a review of TPC’s policies; replacement doors and windows at the Pavilion; and a grant of £250 to Parenting Special Children. 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 Aldermaston Parish Council took place on 12 October and you’ll be able to download the minutes here in due course. Items covered included: the skateboard ramp (see separate section above); one planning application; community engagement; the parish’s resilience plan; traffic monitoring equipment; and the new footpath at Wasing Lane. 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 Burghfield Parish Council took place on 7 October and you can read the draft minutes here. Items covered included: updates from District Councillors Bridgman and Longton; an update on the NDP; reports from the committees; financial matters; and Remembrance Day. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Padworth Parish Council took place on 13 September and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: an update for the Mill Lane Residents’ Association; the Padworth show; the Village Hall; financial matters; a donation to Tadley Citizens Advice Bureau; green projects; possible extra traffic from AWE; planning applications; the bus shelter; the volume of Veolia’s alarms; and the allotments. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Stratfield Mortimer Parish Council took place on 9 September and you can read the minutes here. ITo see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• See this page on Stratfield Mortimer PC’s website for more information on the refresh of its neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Beenham Parish Council took place on 6 September 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 details of Beenham’s Community Plan.

• The most recent meeting of Bradfield Parish Council took place on 3 August and you can read the minutes hereTo 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 Englefield Parish Council took place on 28 June and you can read the minutes hereTo see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas, please click here.

Thursday 7 October 2021

This week’s news

Click here to read Councillor Graham Bridgman’s parish report for Burghfield and Mortimer (scroll down to the foot for the local stuff). Items covered here include rats in Burghfield, road verges, nightlines and footways in Stratfield Mortimer and Goodies Lane in Wokefield.

• As mentioned previously, Stratfield Mortimer decided a couple of months ago to pause the discussions into adopting its library. The following item was minuted in the September PC meeting: “Further correspondence received from Paul James of WBC, confirming he has consulted with elected members about SMPC’s decision to pause negotiations. WBC recognises there are a range of possible models and solutions that can achieve the same result and are keen to continue engaging with SMPC to establish the best outcome with regards to Mortimer Library. In addition, WBC is conducting a Review of the Libraries Service which concludes next January. The purpose of the review is to ensure that the service continues to meet local needs and during the review they will be asking parish and town councils to give us their views about the service.” One model SMPC may be looking at is the one pioneered by Hungerford, which has proved very successful.

• Roadworks to Aldermaston Wharf Bridge will cause the bridge to be shut on 16 to 17 October 2021 between 8am to 5pm. Click on this one.network link to see more information and alternate routes.

• Burghclere Ladies FC is looking for players to join its new team for their debut season in the Thames Valley Counties Women’s Football League. Anyone who would be interested in getting involved can find out more information here.

• A reminder that the John Cumber Hall in Theale is now available for hire for classes, meetings and groups – contact enquiries@thealeparishcouncil.gov.uk or call 0118 930 6592 for more information.

Padworth Parish Council has published its October 2021 newsletter edition, which can be found here. It includes dates for future events and meetings happening throughout October in the parish.

• Nominations for West Berkshire Council’s 2021 Community Champion Awards are now open. If you know anyone whose hard work within the community should be highlighted and rewarded, then you can click here to see how you can nominate a West Berks resident. All nominations close on Monday 1 November 2021.

Peter Argyle

• West Berkshire Council issued a statement on 7 October concerning the death of WBC Councillor Peter Argyle, who represented Theale, Calcot and Tilehurst & Holybrook wards from 1997. He was also Chairman of the Council in 2011-12 and 2015-16 and was the current Chair of the Personnel Committee. “We are all very sad to hear this news,” said WBC Leader Lynne Doherty. “Peter was a true man of the people and a caring, hard-working councillor. I remember him for his wonderful sense of humour and for his unfaltering commitment to improving services for local residents, particularly young people. He was such a passionate advocate for children and education and used his time at West Berkshire Council to champion their needs. Peter’s commitment to West Berkshire will remain a much deserved legacy to him and all those whose lives he touched. Our thoughts go out to his family and friends, of whom there are many, at this difficult time.”

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 Theale Parish Council took place on 6 September and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the fire station; planning applications; dog fouling; speed restrictions; the parish magazine; a review of TPC’s policies; replacement doors and windows at the Pavilion; and a grant of £250 to Parenting Special Children. 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 Aldermaston Parish Council took place on 14 September and you can download the minutes here Items covered included: the skateboard ramp (see separate section above); the recent medicine event at the Wasing Estate; two planning applications; two notices of approval from WBC (one of which, at Paice’s Hill, was felt by APC to be “particularly disappointing ” given the likely increased traffic generation onto the already busy A340 and the fact that it sets “an interesting precedent on the viability of separate granny annexes”); the Lidl appeal; community engagement; and vegetation cutting at The Loosey. 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 Padworth Parish Council took place on 13 September and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: an update for the Mill Lane Residents’ Association; the Padworth show; the Village Hall; financial matters; a donation to Tadley Citizens Advice Bureau; green projects; possible extra traffic from AWE; planning applications; the bus shelter; the volume of Veolia’s alarms; and the allotments. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Stratfield Mortimer Parish Council took place on 9 September and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: The Grimsby Fish Guy; the defibrillator; a councillor vacancy; the library (see section above); the Street footway; the Mortimer to Burghfield cycleway and footpath; reports from working parties; the NDP; the jubilee; a grant to Tadley Citizens Advice; Foundry Brook; the Fairground; the allotments; financial matters: District Councillor Graham Bridgman’s report (see above); and several planning applications. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• See this page on Stratfield Mortimer PC’s website for more information on the refresh of its neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Beenham Parish Council took place on 6 September and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: a vacancy for a councillor; planning applications; the greening campaign; speeding; the play area;  grant requests; and financial matters. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• Click here for details of Beenham’s Community Plan.

• The most recent meeting of Burghfield Parish Council took place on 2 September and you can read the draft minutes here. Items covered included: Blossom into Spring; Beavers (the children’s group, not the animals) at the allotments; financial matters; and the Village Hall. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Bradfield Parish Council took place on 3 August and you can read the minutes hereTo 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 Englefield Parish Council took place on 28 June and you can read the minutes hereTo see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas, please click here.

Thursday 30 September 2021

This week’s news

Theale Green School published this post on their website which introduced their new assistant headteacher Matt Bowler to students and parents. According to the article, Mr Bowler has been at the school for four weeks now and reflected on his appointment by saying “This the role I’ve been looking for.”

Holy Trinity Church, Theale is supporting West Berkshire Foodbank and Churches in Reading Drop in Centre for the homeless (CIRDIC) at their Harvest Service on Sunday 3 October 2021. In a post on their Facebook page they have encouraged people of all ages to attend the service at 10.30am, and have asked “Please bring non-perishable items with you to donate to those less well-off”.

• This week’s Newbury Weekly News reports on p28 that planning approval has been granted to The Six Bells in Beenham for an on-site shop to be built. I spoke to the owner/chef Luke Woods who told me that there was a lot of support for the plan as there is currently no shop in the village. The offerings were likely to be of a convenience-store kind. One of the conditions – which is similar to one being discussed for a similar proposal further West in Great Shefford – was the opening hours of the shop didn’t clash with the peak hours at the pub: this is to prevent the danger of overspill parking on the road. I asked Luke when it was likely to be open. “Hard to say,” he told me. “Now we’re in the hands of their builders and they, of course, are in the hands of their suppliers. ‘Some time in 2022’ is about the most I can say at present.”

• Burghclere Ladies FC is looking for players to join their new team for their debut season in the Thames Valley Counties Women’s Football League. Anyone who would be interested in getting involved can find out more information here.

Theale Library is back hosting in-person events for people of all ages. To find out more information on future clubs and events click here to visit the West Berkshire Library Facebook page or email Theale Library at thealelibrary@westberks.gov.uk.

• A reminder that the John Cumber Hall in Theale is now available for hire for classes, meetings and groups – contact enquiries@thealeparishcouncil.gov.uk or call 0118 930 6592 for more information.

Newbury Today reports that Bradfield College has “completed the purchase of a church with historic ties to the school, following years of negotiations with the Oxford Diocese.” I don’t know I find the idea of a diocese taking years over negotiations strange, but I do. Mind you, this isn’t the first time I’ve heard of such authorities being pretty hard-nosed about striking deals. When your landholding is 105,000 acres (about 425 sq km) and worth about £2.2bn, you can doubtless employ some pretty tough property managers. Anyway, it belongs to the school now, which was kind of always the original intention when the place was founded.

News from your local council

• The most recent meeting of Theale Parish Council took place on 6 September and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the fire station; planning applications; dog fouling; speed restrictions (see Alan Macro’s report, mentioned above); the parish magazine; a review of TPC’s policies; replacement doors and windows at the Pavilion; and a grant of £250 to Parenting Special Children. 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 Aldermaston Parish Council took place on 14 September and you can download the minutes here Items covered included: the skateboard ramp (see separate section above); the recent medicine event at the Wasing Estate; two planning applications; two notices of approval from WBC (one of which, at Paice’s Hill, was felt by APC to be “particularly disappointing ” given the likely increased traffic generation onto the already busy A340 and the fact that it sets “an interesting precedent on the viability of separate granny annexes”); the Lidl appeal; community engagement; and vegetation cutting at The Loosey. 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 Padworth Parish Council took place on 13 September and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: an update for the Mill Lane Residents’ Association; the Padworth show; the Village Hall; financial matters; a donation to Tadley Citizens Advice Bureau; green projects; possible extra traffic from AWE; planning applications; the bus shelter; the volume of Veolia’s alarms; and the allotments. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• Click here to see the September 2021 edition of the Padworth newsletter, which includes information on local groups and societies.

• The most recent meeting of Beenham Parish Council took place on 6 September and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: a vacancy for a councillor; planning applications; the greening campaign; speeding; the play area;  grant requests; and financial matters. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• Click here for details of Beenham’s Community Plan.

• The most recent meeting of Burghfield Parish Council took place on 2 September and you can read the draft minutes here. Items covered included: Blossom into Spring; Beavers (the children’s group, not the animals) at the allotments; financial matters; and the Village Hall. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Bradfield Parish Council took place on 3 August and you can read the minutes hereTo 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 Stratfield Mortimer Parish Council took place on 29 July and you can read the draft minutes hereTo see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• See this page on Stratfield Mortimer PC’s website for more information on the refresh of its neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Englefield Parish Council took place on 28 June and you can read the draft minutes hereTo see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas, please click here.

Thursday 23 September 2021

This week’s news

• A Macmillan Cancer Support coffee morning is being held at Mortimer West end Village Hall on Friday 24 September 2021 between 9am till 1pm. More information on the event can be found on this Facebook post.

• Keen gardeners are invited to volunteer at a wildflower planting event, which is being hosted by Theale Parish Council’s Environmental Working Party (EWP), as a part of the Great Big Green Week on Sunday 26 September 2021 from 1.30pm. The EWP have encouraged people from Theale and surrounding areas to lend a helping hand and said “this is a great way to find out more about the Environmental Working Party whilst helping to improve the biodiversity of our green spaces around the village.” To register your interest and to find out more about the event, please click here.

Burghclere Ladies FC is looking for players to join their new team for their debut season in the Thames Valley Counties Women’s Football League. Anyone who would be interested in getting involved can find out more information here.

The circus is in town from until 26 September 2021 at Theale Recreation Ground, RG7 5AS. If you wish to find out more information, please click here to download the poster for the event which shows the various times and dates for the shows.

• Theale Library is back hosting in-person events for people of all ages. Its Craft and Colouring Club is aimed at adults who want to unleash their creativity and the library encourages anyone to bring along their own projects, or they can use the materials provided on the day. The club starts on Friday 24 September 2021 from 2.15 till 3.30pm.

Aldermaston’s skateboard ramp has been in the news a bit recently (see in particular last week’s and the 12 August section below).

Click here to read the latest e-newsletter from Theale’s District Councillor Alan Macro. This is mainly concerned with two planning applications in the parish, one for three “employment units for flexible uses” and the other is for 11 homes. He also updates residents on his attempts to get a 20mph speed limit introduced in Crown Lane and Meadow Way.

Click here to read the latest e-newsletter from Burghfield and Mortimer’s District Councillor Graham Bridgman. Ward matters covered include a footpath in Beech Hill, another footpath in Stratfield Mortimer and speeding and a proposed permanent closure in Wokefield.

• The John Cumber Hall in Theale is now once again available for for hire for classes, meetings and groups – contact enquiries@thealeparishcouncil.gov.uk or call 0118 930 6592 for more information.

News from your local council

• The most recent meeting of Theale Parish Council took place on 6 September and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the fire station; planning applications; dog fouling; speed restrictions (see Alan Macro’s report, mentioned above); the parish magazine; a review of TPC’s policies; replacement doors and windows at the Pavilion; and a grant of £250 to Parenting Special Children. 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 Aldermaston Parish Council took place on 14 September and you will be able to download the minutes here in due course. Items covered included: the skateboard ramp (see separate section above); the recent medicine event at the Wasing Estate; two planning applications; two notices of approval from WBC (one of which, at Paice’s Hill, was felt by APC to be “particularly disappointing ” given the likely increased traffic generation onto the already busy A340 and the fact that it sets “an interesting precedent on the viability of separate granny annexes”); the Lidl appeal; community engagement; and vegetation cutting at The Loosey. 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 Padworth Parish Council took place on 13 September and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: an update for the Mill Lane Residents’ Association; the Padworth show; the Village Hall; financial matters; a donation to Tadley Citizens Advice Bureau; green projects; possible extra traffic from AWE; planning applications; the bus shelter; the volume of Veolia’s alarms; and the allotments. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• Click here to see the September 2021 edition of the Padworth newsletter, which includes information on local groups and societies.

• The most recent meeting of Beenham Parish Council took place on 6 September and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: a vacancy for a councillor; planning applications; the greening campaign; speeding; the play area;  grant requests; and financial matters.To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

Click here for details of Beenham’s Community Plan.

• The most recent meeting of Burghfield Parish Council took place on 2 September and you can read the draft minutes here. Items covered included: Blossom into Spring; Beavers (the children’s group, not the animals) at the allotments; financial matters; and the Village Hall. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Bradfield Parish Council took place on 3 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, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Stratfield Mortimer Parish Council took place on 29 July and you can read the draft minutes here. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

See this page on Stratfield Mortimer PC’s website for more information on the refresh of its neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Englefield Parish Council took place on 28 June and you can read the draft minutes here. To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas, please click here.

Thursday 16 September 2021

• Any keen gardeners can help volunteer at a wildflower planting event, which is being hosted by Theale Parish Council’s Environmental Working Party (EWP), as a part of the Great Big Green Week on Sunday 26 September 2021 from 1.30pm. The EWP have encouraged people from Theale and surrounding areas to lend a helping hand and said “this is a great way to find out more about the Environmental Working Party whilst helping to improve the biodiversity of our green spaces around the village.” To register your interest and to find out more about the event, please click here.

The circus is in town from 22 to 26 September 2021 at Theale Recreation Ground, RG7 5AS. If you wish to find out more information, please click here to download the poster for the event which shows all the various times and dates for the shows.

• Theale Library is back hosting in-person events for people of all ages starting on Wednesday 22 September 2021. The Rhymetime group, which is for children up to two years old, will be held from 11am till 11:30am and the Quick Craft sessions, aimed at children under 11 years old, is starting at 3:30pm and finishes at 4:45pm. Both groups start on Wednesday 22 September, and to find out more information on future events click here to visit the West Berkshire Library Facebook page or email Theale Library at thealelibrary@westberks.gov.uk.

• This week’s NWN reports on p29 that Englefield Estate is looking for people run its community stores. I spoke to the office on 16 September and was told that there had been plenty of applicants – no final decision has been taken so still time to throw your hat in the ring. Here’s the website.

• Englefield is the home of former MP Richard Benyon, which leads me neatly on to our next story. This week’s NWN reports on p12 that St Mark’s churchyard was home to some returning guests last weekend with a swarm of bees  setting up camp on a gravestone in the churchyard. The swarm is said to return regularly and a local beekeeper confirmed that they swarmed because they were hungry. Why they want to swarm on this gravestone is unclear but if the bees think it’s a good idea who am I to argue? Richard Benyon posted an image on Twitter here. To read further, click here.

Aldermaston’s skateboard ramp has been in the news a bit recently (see in particular the 12 August section below). Aldermaston PC held a meeting on 14 September and issued the following statement: “A joint site inspection by Parish Councillors and interested parishioners has confirmed our worst fears that the wooden substructure of the skateboard ramp in the Recreation Ground has rotted beyond repair and it was concluded that the ramp was in terminal decline. We therefore reluctantly agreed to spend £,000 on demolition and removal, together with the restoration of the area to grass. The Parish Council does not have sufficient funds for a replacement but has agreed to work with interested parishioners to seek indicative costs and possible grants for one. This would likely to be concrete…which has the benefit of easier maintenance but increases the risk of personal injury. It was stressed that ours is a small parish [slightly over 900 inhabitants] and any design would have to be kept simple.”

Click here to read the latest e-newsletter from Theale’s District Councillor Alan Macro. This is mainly concerned with two planning applications in the parish, one for three “employment units for flexible uses” and the other is for 11 homes. He also updates residents on his attempts to get a 20mph speed limit introduced in Crown Lane and Meadow Way.

Click here to read the latest e-newsletter from Burghfield and Mortimer’s District Councillor Graham Bridgman. Ward matters covered include a footpath in Beech Hill, another footpath in Stratfield Mortimer and speeding and a proposed permanent closure in Wokefield.

• The most recent meeting of Theale Parish Council took place on 6 September and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the fire station; planning applications; dog fouling; speed restrictions (see Alan Macro’s report, mentioned above); the parish magazine; a review of TPC’s policies; replacement doors and windows at the Pavilion; and a grant of £250 to Parenting Special Children. To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas, please click here.

• The John Cumber Hall in Theale is now once again available for for hire for classes, meetings and groups – contact enquiries@thealeparishcouncil.gov.uk or call 0118 930 6592 for more information.

• The most recent meeting of Aldermaston Parish Council took place on 14 September and you will be able to download the minutes here in due course. Items covered included: the skateboard ramp (see separate section above); the recent medicine event at the Wasing Estate; two planning applications; two notices of approval from WBC (one of which, at Paice’s Hill, was felt by APC to be “particularly disappointing ” given the likely increased traffic generation onto the already busy A340 and the fact that it sets “an interesting precedent on the viability of separate granny annexes”); the Lidl appeal; community engagement; and vegetation cutting at The Loosey. 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 Padworth Parish Council took place on 13 September and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: an update for the Mill Lane Residents’ Association; the Padworth show; the Village Hall; financial matters; a donation to Tadley Citizens Advice Bureau; green projects; possible extra traffic from AWE; planning applications; the bus shelter; the volume of Veolia’s alarms; and the allotments. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• Click here to see the September 2021 edition of the Padworth newsletter, which includes information on local groups and societies.

• The most recent meeting of Beenham Parish Council took place on 6 September and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: a vacancy for a councillor; planning applications; the greening campaign; speeding; the play area;  grant requests; and financial matters.To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

Click here for details of Beenham’s Community Plan.

• The most recent meeting of Burghfield Parish Council took place on 2 September and you can read the draft minutes here. Items covered included: Blossom into Spring; Beavers (the children’s group, not the animals) at the allotments; financial matters; and the Village Hall. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Bradfield Parish Council took place on 3 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, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Stratfield Mortimer Parish Council took place on 29 July and you can read the draft minutes here. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

See this page on Stratfield Mortimer PC’s website for more information on the refresh of its neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Englefield Parish Council took place on 28 June and you can read the draft minutes here. To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas, please click here.

Thursday 9 September 2021

• St Mary’s Church in Aldermaston is part of the heritage open day events happening in September. You can visit the 12th Century church between noon till 5pm on 11 to 12 September 2021. For more information on the church and the event, please click here.

• West Berkshire Council has confirmed that work on The Willink School, Burghfield’s £2.9m project (which will provide the school with a new two story English block, expanded SEND facilities plus other improvement across the school site) is near completion.

• There was a fascinating photograph tweeted out by Berkshire, Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire Wildlife Trust on 7 September 2021 in which a Gorse Mite web was spotted in Padworth Common reserve. To view the photo taken by Tom Hayward (Senior Land Manager), click here.

Click here to read the latest e-newsletter from Theale’s District Councillor Alan Macro. This is mainly concerned with two planning applications in the parish, one for three “employment units for flexible uses” and the other is for 11 homes. He also updates residents on his attempts to get a 20mph speed limit introduced in Crown Lane and Meadow Way.

Click here to read the latest e-newsletter from Burghfield and Mortimer’s District Councillor Graham Bridgman. Ward matters covered include a footpath in Beech Hill, another footpath in Stratfield Mortimer and speeding and a proposed permanent closure in Wokefield.

• The most recent meeting of Theale Parish Council took place on 9 August and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the District Councillor’s report; two planning applications and three planning decisions by WBC; financial matters; a proposed village lunch to celebrate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee on Sunday 5 June 2022; tree planting; and a grant to Parenting Special Children.

• The John Cumber Hall in Theale is now once again available for for hire for classes, meetings and groups – contact enquiries@thealeparishcouncil.gov.uk or call 0118 930 6592 for more information.

• The most recent meeting of Aldermaston Parish Council took place on 10 August and you can download minutes here. Items covered included: the skateboard ramp; two planning applications and four decisions from WBC (one of which, for the new industrial estate on Paices Hill, APC noted with regret had been approved); speeding; overgrowth on the cycle park; the draft appraisal of the Village Conservation Area; and the parish’s resilience plan. 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 Bradfield Parish Council took place on 3 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, please click here.

• The most recent meeting of Beenham Parish Council took place on 2 August 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 details of Beenham’s Community Plan.

• The most recent meeting of Stratfield Mortimer Parish Council took place on 29 July and you can read the draft minutes here. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

See this page on Stratfield Mortimer PC’s website for more information on the refresh of its neighbourhood development plan.

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

• The most recent meeting of Padworth Parish Council took place on 19 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 to see the September 2021 edition of the Padworth newsletter, which includes information on local groups and societies.

• The most recent meeting of Englefield Parish Council took place on 28 June and you can read the draft minutes here. To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas, please click here.

Thursday 2 September 2021

Click here for information about lateral flow tests available in West Berkshire.

•The Thames Valley Police Museum in Sulhamstead re-opened on 1 September 2021 after closing for refurbishment and due to the COVID 19 outbreak. Click here to read more about the opening.

• On Saturday 4 September 2021 it’s the Beenham Village Family Fun Day, which starts at noon with a wheelbarrow race at the Six Bells Pub, Back Ln, Beenham, Reading RG7 5NX. The race will finish at the Beenham Recreational Ground and will be followed by races for all ages. Click here to find out more about the event.

• This year’s Aldermaston and Wasing Show will be held on Sunday 5 September 2021, starting at 2pm. It will be the 79th year of the show and will be located at The Old Mill, Basingstoke Rd, Aldermaston, Reading RG7 4LB. To find out more, click here.

Click here to read the latest e-newsletter from District Councillor Alan Macro. This is mainly concerned with two planning applications in the parish, one for three “employment units for flexible uses” and the other is for 11 homes. He also updates residents on his attempts to get a 20mph speed limit introduced in Crown Lane and Meadow Way.

• The most recent meeting of Theale Parish Council took place on 9 August and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the District Councillor’s report; two planning applications and three planning decisions by WBC; financial matters; a proposed village lunch to celebrate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee on Sunday 5 June 2022; tree planting; and a grant to Parenting Special Children.

• The John Cumber Hall in Theale is now once again available for for hire for classes, meetings and groups – contact enquiries@thealeparishcouncil.gov.uk or call 0118 930 6592 for more information.

• The most recent meeting of Aldermaston Parish Council took place on 10 August and you’ll be able to download minutes here in due course. Items covered included: the skateboard ramp; two planning applications and four decisions from WBC (one of which, for the new industrial estate on Paices Hill, APC noted with regret had been approved); speeding; overgrowth on the cycle park; the draft appraisal of the Village Conservation Area; and the parish’s resilience plan. 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 Bradfield Parish Council took place on 3 August and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: giant hogweed; speeding; parking on Southend road; the Village Hall (and, specifically, what appears to be a disagreement between Bradfield PC and the Village Hall Committee about the cost and nature of planned changes to the building); proposed names for the new development north of Stretton Close (one suggestion, Boggy Gardens being described in the minutes as “flippant but probably true”); new benches; power supplies in the village; planning applications; road signs; a new footway; road-safety issues; bonfires; wildflower verges; dog bins; financial matters; and overgrown verges. 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 Beenham Parish Council took place on 2 August and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: a vacancy of the council; one new planning application, two amended ones, one enforcement enquiry and two planning decisions by WBC; proposed wildflower verges; the perennial, national, never-ending problem of dog waste; the Beenham Primary School relaunch working party; the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee Celebrations; the proposed greening campaign; the mobile phone mast; speeding; play area refurbishment; 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 Stratfield Mortimer Parish Council took place on 29 July and you can read the draft minutes here. To see the dates and agendas for future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here.

Stratfield Mortimer was the first parish in West Berkshire to have an NDP made, in 2017, and it now feels that it’s time to start updating it. See this  page on SMPC’s website for more information.

Click here for details of Beenham’s Community Plan.

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

• The most recent meeting of Padworth Parish Council took place on 19 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 Englefield Parish Council took place on 28 June and you can read the draft minutes here. To see the dates of future Parish Council meetings (including any committees), please click here. To see the agendas, please click here.

• Click here to see the August 2021 edition of the Padworth newsletter, which includes information on local groups and societies.

Thursday 26 August 2021

Click here for information about lateral flow tests available in West Berkshire.

• The most recent meeting of Aldermaston Parish Council took place on 10 August and you’ll be able to download minutes here in due course. Items covered included: the skateboard ramp (see paragraph below); two planning applications and four decisions from WBC (one of which, for the new industrial estate on Paices Hill, APC noted with regret had been approved); speeding; overgrowth on the cycle park; the draft appraisal of the Village Conservation Area; and the parish’s resilience plan.

• The above-mentioned matter of the skateboard ramp “dominated discussion” at the open forum at the above-mentioned meeting : see the 12 August section below for the full statement. There’s also a letter on the subject from the PC in this week’s Newbury Weekly News.

• A less contentious issue in the parish (hopefully) is the return of the Aldermaston and Wasing Show on Saturday 5 September – details here.

• The most recent meeting of Theale Parish Council took place on 9 August and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the District Councillor’s report; two planning applications and three planning decisions by WBC; financial matters; a proposed village lunch to celebrate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee on Sunday 5 June 2022; tree planting; and a grant to Parenting Special Children.

• The John Cumber Hall in Theale is now once again available for for hire for classes, meetings and groups – contact enquiries@thealeparishcouncil.gov.uk or call 0118 930 6592 for more information.

• The most recent meeting of Beenham Parish Council took place on 2 August and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: a vacancy of the council; one new planning application, two amended ones, one enforcement enquiry and two planning decisions by WBC; proposed wildflower verges; the perennial, national, never-ending problem of dog waste; the Beenham Primary School relaunch working party; the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee Celebrations; the proposed greening campaign; the mobile phone mast; speeding; play area refurbishment; and financial matters.

• The most recent meeting of Stratfield Mortimer Parish Council took place on 29 July and you can read the draft minutes here. Items covered included: governance and financial matters; confirmation that WBC has been informed of SMPC’s decision to pause negotiations to take over the library building; the tennis courts; the MUGA; the adoption of the phone box (BT failed to cash the cheque for £1 but has agreed to waive the fee); the decision to paint this “NHS blue” (which, I can exclusively reveal, in Pantone 300 which is 0 94 184 in RGB and 100 56 0 3 in CMYK); a successful members’ bid for fitness equipment; committee and working party reports; digital communications; St John’s Hall; WBC consultations; the NDP; overgrown vegetation; the formation of a Climate and Environment Working Party; the Blossom into Spring project; financial matters; correspondence from residents; planning matters; and the Neighbourhood Action Group.

Stratfield Mortimer was the first parish in West Berkshire to have an NDP made, in 2017, and it now feels that it’s time to start updating it. See this  page on SMPC’s website for more information.

Click here for details of Beenham’s Community Plan.

• The most recent meeting of Burghfield Parish Council took place on 22 July and you can read the draft minutes here. Items covered included: an apology demanded (but not supplied); an alleged infestation of rats; a proposed open day at the Village Hall; boundary changes; Burghfest 2021; repairs to the skate park; and financial matters.

• The most recent meeting of Padworth Parish Council took place on 19 July and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the Village Hall; free use of the field; a suspected water leak; financial matters; Four Houses Corner; speeding; planning matters; wildflower planting; and the Padworth and Aldermaston show.

• The most recent meeting of Bradfield Parish Council took place on 6 July and you can read the minutes here.

• The most recent meeting of Englefield Parish Council took place on 28 June and you can read the draft minutes here.

• Click here to see the August 2021 edition of the Padworth newsletter, which includes information on local groups and societies.

Thursday 19 August 2021

Click here for information about lateral flow tests available in West Berkshire.

• The most recent meeting of Aldermaston Parish Council took place on 10 August and you’ll be able to download minutes here in due course. Items covered included: the skateboard ramp (see paragraph below); two planning applications and four decisions from WBC (one of which, for the new industrial estate on Paices Hill, APC noted with regret had been approved); speeding; overgrowth on the cycle park; the draft appraisal of the Village Conservation Area; and the parish’s resilience plan.

• The above-mentioned matter of the skateboard ramp “dominated discussion” at the open forum at the above-mentioned meeting : see last week’s section below for the full statement.

• The most recent meeting of Theale Parish Council took place on 9 August and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the District Councillor’s report; two planning applications and three planning decisions by WBC; financial matters; a proposed village lunch to celebrate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee on Sunday 5 June 2022; tree planting; and a grant to Parenting Special Children.

• The John Cumber Hall in Theale is now once again available for for hire for classes, meetings and groups – contact enquiries@thealeparishcouncil.gov.uk or call 0118 930 6592 for more information.

• The most recent meeting of Beenham Parish Council took place on 2 August and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: a vacancy of the council; one new planning application, two amended ones, one enforcement enquiry and two planning decisions by WBC; proposed wildflower verges; the perennial, national, never-ending problem of dog waste; the Beenham Primary School relaunch working party; the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee Celebrations; the proposed greening campaign; the mobile phone mast; speeding; play area refurbishment; and financial matters.

• The most recent meeting of Stratfield Mortimer Parish Council took place on 29 July and you can read the draft minutes here. Items covered included: governance and financial matters; confirmation that WBC has been informed of SMPC’s decision to pause negotiations to take over the library building; the tennis courts; the MUGA; the adoption of the phone box (BT failed to cash the cheque for £1 but has agreed to waive the fee); the decision to paint this “NHS blue” (which, I can exclusively reveal, in Pantone 300 which is 0 94 184 in RGB and 100 56 0 3 in CMYK); a successful members’ bid for fitness equipment; committee and working party reports; digital communications; St John’s Hall; WBC consultations; the NDP; overgrown vegetation; the formation of a Climate and Environment Working Party; the Blossom into Spring project; financial matters; correspondence from residents; planning matters; and the Neighbourhood Action Group.

Stratfield Mortimer was the first parish in West Berkshire to have an NDP made, in 2017, and it now feels that it’s time to start updating it. See this  page on SMPC’s website for more information.

Click here for details of Beenham’s Community Plan.

• The most recent meeting of Burghfield Parish Council took place on 22 July and you can read the draft minutes here. Items covered included: an apology demanded (but not supplied); an alleged infestation of rats; a proposed open day at the Village Hall; boundary changes; Burghfest 2021; repairs to the skate park; and financial matters.

• The most recent meeting of Padworth Parish Council took place on 19 July and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the Village Hall; free use of the field; a suspected water leak; financial matters; Four Houses Corner; speeding; planning matters; wildflower planting; and the Padworth and Aldermaston show.

• The most recent meeting of Bradfield Parish Council took place on 6 July and you can read the minutes here.

• The most recent meeting of Englefield Parish Council took place on 28 June and you can read the draft minutes here.

• Click here to see the August 2021 edition of the Padworth newsletter, which includes information on local groups and societies.

Thursday 12 August 2021

Click here for information about lateral flow tests available in West Berkshire.

• The most recent meeting of Theale Parish Council took place on 9 August and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the District Councillor’s report; two planning applications and three planning decisions by WBC; financial matters; a proposed village lunch to celebrate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee on Sunday 5 June 2022; tree planting; and a grant to Parenting Special Children.

• West End Road in Stratfield Mortimer will be closed until 16 August while repairs are carried out by Thames Water. See here for more information.

• The most recent meeting of Beenham Parish Council took place on 2 August and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: a vacancy of the council; one new planning application, two amended ones, one enforcement enquiry and two planning decisions by WBC; proposed wildflower verges; the perennial, national, never-ending problem of dog waste; the Beenham Primary School relaunch working party; the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee Celebrations; the proposed greening campaign; the mobile phone mast; speeding; play area refurbishment; and financial matters.

Click here for details of Beenham’s Community Plan.

• The most recent meeting of Padworth Parish Council took place on 19 July and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the Village Hall; free use of the field; a suspected water leak; financial matters; Four Houses Corner; speeding; planning matters; wildflower planting; and the Padworth and Aldermaston show.

• The most recent meeting of Aldermaston Parish Council took place on 10 August and you’ll be able to download minutes here in due course. Items covered included: the skateboard ramp (see paragraph below); two planning applications and four decisions from WBC (one of which, for the new industrial estate on Paices Hill, APC noted with regret had been approved); speeding; overgrowth on the cycle park; the draft appraisal of the Village Conservation Area; and the parish’s resilience plan.

• The above-mentioned matter of the skateboard ramp “dominated discussion” at the open forum at the above-mentioned meeting and I shall quote for the former Chairman’s notes in full. “The view from the floor was that this was a much-appreciated facility that should be retained, especially in the light of recent interest from the Olympics. It was suggested that the ramp should be kept for two to three years whilst funding for a replacement was found. Aldermaston Parish Council’s (APC) argument was that the decision to remove it was not taken lightly: it had sought the advice of several experts before reaching the decision, which was primarily a financial one. APC had been told that it was reaching the end of its useable life, and no supplier would provide us with a guarantee after a repair. One parishioner offered to remove a panel to investigate the state of the structure and this was agreed a good compromise. Removal was temporarily deferred.” Well, that all seems to be working as it should be – the PC sees a problem, looks into and makes a decision. Others then disagree, come up with an alternative plan and discusses it with the PC, which is then big enough to change its mind. Hats off all round.

• The most recent meeting of Bradfield Parish Council took place on 6 July and you can read the minutes here.

• The most recent meeting of Englefield Parish Council took place on 28 June and you can read the draft minutes here.

• The most recent meeting of Stratfield Mortimer Parish Council took place on 24 June and you can read the draft minutes here.

• District Councillor Graham Bridgman’s latest newsletter refers to three local issues: the Perrin’s Farm planning appeal which the inspector turned down as it is “not a suitable location for the scale of development proposed insofar as it would conflict with the [WBC] spatial strategy set out in Policy ADDP1”; successful finding from WBC (with a contribution from SMPC’s CIL piggy bank) for the footway to St Mary’s; and his decision to call in the planning application at 33 St John’s Road.

Stratfield Mortimer was the first parish in West Berkshire to have an NDP made, in 2017, and it now feels that it’s time to start updating it. See this  page on SMPC’s website for more information.

• The most recent meeting of Burghfield Parish Council took place on 22 July and you can read the draft minutes here. Items covered included: an apology demanded (but not supplied); an alleged infestation of rats; a proposed open day at the Village Hall; boundary changes; Burghfest 2021; repairs to the skate park; and financial matters.

• In his latest newsletter, which you can read here, District Councillor Graham Bridgman “thanks Burghfield Parish Councillor Cresser for raising (in a private capacity) the question of access to the bus survey for those without access to the internet. As a result of her intervention and my raising it with the Executive Portfolio Holder, the paperwork will be distributed to libraries (and, I hope, the parish offices).”

• Click here to see the August 2021 edition of the Padworth newsletter, which includes information on local groups and societies and, in its usual pleasing display of neighbourly co-operation, notes on PC meetings from neighbouring parishes.

Thursday 5 August 2021

Click here for information about lateral flow tests available in West Berkshire (note that the site at the Burghfield Community Centre has closed).

• The most recent meeting of Theale Parish Council took place on 5 July and you can read the minutes here.

• West End Road in Stratfield Mortimer will be closed until 16 August while repairs are carried out by Thames Water. See here for more information.

• The most recent meeting of Padworth Parish Council took place on 19 July and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the Village Hall; free use of the field; a suspected water leak; financial matters; Four Houses Corner; speeding; planning matters; wildflower planting; and the Padworth and Aldermaston show.

• The most recent meeting of Aldermaston Parish Council took place on 13 July and you’ll be able to download minutes here in due course. Items covered included: a minute’s silence for former Parish Councillor Carla Keyser-Booth who died in June; one planning application (which was objected to following APC’s policy of doing this for any application which is likely to increase traffic on the A340); a discussion about the proposed industrial estate on Paices Hill; the skate ramp; a new village sign; and PC communications.

• The most recent meeting of Beenham Parish Council took place on 5 July and you can read the minutes here.

Click here for details of Beenham’s Community Plan.

• The most recent meeting of Englefield Parish Council took place on 28 June and you can read the draft minutes here.

• The most recent meeting of Stratfield Mortimer Parish Council took place on 24 June and you can read the draft minutes here.

• District Councillor Graham Bridgman’s latest newsletter refers to three local issues: the Perrin’s Farm planning appeal which the inspector turned down as it is “not a suitable location for the scale of development proposed insofar as it would conflict with the [WBC] spatial strategy set out in Policy ADDP1”; successful finding from WBC (with a contribution from SMPC’s CIL piggy bank) for the footway to St Mary’s; and his decision to call in the planning application at 33 St John’s Road.

Stratfield Mortimer was the first parish in West Berkshire to have an NDP made, in 2017, and it now feels that it’s time to start updating it. See this  page on SMPC’s website for more information.

• The most recent meeting of Burghfield Parish Council took place on 22 July and you can read the draft minutes here. Items covered included: an apology demanded (but not supplied); an alleged infestation of rats; a proposed open day at the Village Hall; boundary changes; Burghfest 2021; repairs to the skate park; and financial matters.

• In his latest newsletter, which you can read here, District Councillor Graham Bridgman “thanks Burghfield Parish Councillor Cresser for raising (in a private capacity) the question of access to the bus survey for those without access to the internet. As a result of her intervention and my raising it with the Executive Portfolio Holder, the paperwork will be distributed to libraries (and, I hope, the parish offices). Indeed, this exposes a problem that won’t go away for some time. About 30% of people in the UK never use the internet and almost all of these are over 50. The usage declines for about 2% a year – in other words, in broad terms, everyone under 50 is online, about half of those aged 75 are but no one aged 100 is. Councils and many other bodies now communicate exclusively online. This has enormous advantages, of which speed, cost and the ability to add links are three. I suspect that almost every such body has slashed its printing budget almost to zero and yet there is still a sizeable minority who cannot be reached effectively or at all in this way. The other problem is that, assuming the 30% figure as being correct, councils still don’t know who most of them are. Once again, local organisations like parish councils, libraries, community groups (and indeed neighbours) need to come to the rescue by doing their best to spread information to people who might not otherwise be aware of it.

• Click here to see the August 2021 edition of the Padworth newsletter, which includes information on local groups and societies and, in its usual pleasing display of trans-border co-operation, notes on PC meetings from neighbouring parishes.

Thursday 29 July 2021

Click here for information about lateral flow tests available in West Berkshire (note that the site at the Burghfield Community Centre has closed).

• The most recent meeting of Theale Parish Council took place on 5 July and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: a co-option onto Theale PC; decision-making at meetings; planning matters; financial matters; formal ownership and future maintenance arrangements of the grass area at the end of Roundhead Road; the John Cumber Hall; the community engagement policy; and staff salaries.

• Theale Parish Council’s Environmental Working Group is looking for volunteers to help with a community litter pick on Sunday 1 August at 10.30am. More information here.

• West End Road in Stratfield Mortimer will be closed until 16 August while repairs are carried out by Thames Water. See here for more information.

• The most recent meeting of Padworth Parish Council took place on 19 July and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the Village Hall; free use of the field; a suspected water leak; financial matters; Four Houses Corner; speeding; planning matters; wildflower planting; and the Padworth and Aldermaston show.

• The most recent meeting of Aldermaston Parish Council took place on 13 July and you’ll be able to download minutes here in due course. Items covered included: a minute’s silence for former Parish Councillor Carla Keyser-Booth who died in June; one planning application (which was objected to following APC’s policy of doing this for any application which is likely to increase traffic on the A340); a discussion about the proposed industrial estate on Paices Hill; the skate ramp; a new village sign; and PC communications.

• The most recent meeting of Beenham Parish Council took place on 5 July and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: a vacancy for a councillor; planning applications and decisions; a planning enforcement matter; funding for the Beenham Victory Hall; speeding; the salt bin at Mallard Way; concerns about the proposed housing development at Thatcham. (District Councillor Boeck advised that there will be a consultation on the matter); road-light problems on the A4; the Beenham Primary School relaunch working party; PC assets and projects; the play area; the mobile phone mast; grant awards; and financial matters.

• The most recent meeting of Englefield Parish Council took place on 28 June and you can read the draft minutes here.

• The most recent meeting of Stratfield Mortimer Parish Council took place on 24 June and you can read the draft minutes here.

Stratfield Mortimer was the first parish in West Berkshire to have an NDP made, in 2017, and it now feels that it’s time to start updating it. See this  page on SMPC’s website for more information.

• The most recent meeting of Burghfield Parish Council took place on 10 June and you can read the draft minutes here. Items covered included: a disturbance at the meeting; the skate park; committee reports; and financial matters.

• A reminder that we recently interviewed former Aldermaston PC Chair Dave Shirt shortly after he stepped down from 14 years in the hot seat. You can read this here.

• Click here to see the July 2021 edition of the Padworth newsletter, which includes information on local groups and societies and, in a pleasing display of trans-border co-operation, notes on PC meetings from neighbouring parishes.

Thursday 22 July 2021

Click here for information about lateral flow tests available in West Berkshire (note that the site at the Burghfield Community Centre has closed).

• The most recent meeting of Theale Parish Council took place on 5 July and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: a co-option onto Theale PC; decision-making at meetings; planning matters; financial matters; formal ownership and future maintenance arrangements of the grass area at the end of Roundhead Road; the John Cumber Hall; the community engagement policy; and staff salaries.

• Theale Parish Council’s Environmental Working Group is looking for volunteers to help with a community litter pick on Sunday 1 August at 10.30am. More information here.

• West End Road in Stratfield Mortimer will be closed until 16 August while repairs are carried out by Thames Water. See here for more information.

• The most recent meeting of Padworth Parish Council took place on 19 July and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the Village Hall; free use of the field; a suspected water leak; financial matters; Four Houses Corner; speeding; planning matters; wildflower planting; and the Padworth and Aldermaston show.

• The most recent meeting of Aldermaston Parish Council took place on 13 July and you’ll be able to download minutes here in due course. Items covered included: a minute’s silence for former Parish Councillor Carla Keyser-Booth who died in June; one planning application (which was objected to following APC’s policy of doing this for any application which is likely to increase traffic on the A340); a discussion about the proposed industrial estate on Paices Hill; the skate ramp; a new village sign; and PC communications.

• The most recent meeting of Beenham Parish Council took place on 5 July and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: a vacancy for a councillor; planning applications and decisions; a planning enforcement matter; funding for the Beenham Victory Hall; speeding; the salt bin at Mallard Way; concerns about the proposed housing development at Thatcham. (District Councillor Boeck advised that there will be a consultation on the matter); road-light problems on the A4; the Beenham Primary School relaunch working party; PC assets and projects; the play area; the mobile phone mast; grant awards; and financial matters.

• The most recent meeting of Stratfield Mortimer Parish Council took place on 24 June and you can read the draft minutes here. Items covered included: questions about a proposed incinerator site in neighbouring Burghfield; the telephone box defibrillator; a report from the planning committee regarding four applications; reports from other committees and working parties; financial and governance matters; the neighbourhood development plan (see also below); a decision to pause the discussions concerning the proposed transfer of the library building to SMPC; The Street footway widening; the Neighbourhood Action group; an accident at the children’s play area; and a suggestion that WBC’s speed indicator devices needed re-calibrating. (I’m reminded of a story during the early days of speed guns, as they were then known, when  a motorist challenged the Police’s assertion of the speed he’d been doing. The speed gun used was produced in court and the judge suggested it be pointed at a stationary object such as him as a control experiment. On being activated, the device recorded that the judge was moving at 45mph. The case was dismissed.)

• As mentioned last week, Neighbourhood development plans take a formidable amount of work but they need to be refreshed every now and then to bring them up to date. Stratfield Mortimer was the first parish in West Berkshire to have an NDP made, in 2017. A statement on SMPC’s website says that “the Parish Council has agreed that it is now appropriate to initiate a new NDP as West Berkshire is developing its new Local Plan to run through till 2037.  There is a lot we can do through an NDP to encourage the village to develop in the way residents want. Local policies that help with climate change and the way development looks are some examples of what the NDP can influence.” The next step is to create a steering group which will run the process. See this  page on SMPC’s website for more information.

• The most recent meeting of Englefield Parish Council took place on 28 June and you can read the draft minutes here. Items covered included: financial matters; two planning applications; the opening of the Village Hall (on Sunday 17 July) and a grant of £500; winter road gritting; and re-painting the phone box in North Street (for which there was no available budget).

• The most recent meeting of Burghfield Parish Council took place on 10 June and you can read the draft minutes here. Items covered included: a disturbance at the meeting; the skate park; committee reports; and financial matters.

• A reminder that we recently interviewed former Aldermaston PC Chair Dave Shirt shortly after he stepped down from 14 years in the hot seat. You can read this here.

• Still in Stratfield Mortimer, District Councillor Graham Bridgman reports in his latest newsletter that “WBC has made an order to record a public footpath running between Stephens Firs and Stephens Road/Victoria Road – the culmination of, and reward for, a lot of effort by SMPC.”

• Click here to see the July 2021 edition of the Padworth newsletter, which includes information on local groups and societies and, in a pleasing display of trans-border co-operation, notes on PC meetings from neighbouring parishes.

Thursday 15 July 2021

Click here for information about lateral flow tests available in West Berkshire (note that the site at the Burghfield Community Centre has closed).

• The most recent meeting of Theale Parish Council took place on 5 July and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: a co-option onto Theale PC; decision-making at meetings; planning matters; financial matters; formal ownership and future maintenance arrangements of the grass area at the end of Roundhead Road; the John Cumber Hall; the community engagement policy; and staff salaries.

• Theale Parish Council’s Environmental Working Group is looking for volunteers to help with a community litter pick on Sunday 1 August at 10.30am. More information here.

• West End Road in Stratfield Mortimer will be closed until 16 August while repairs are carried out by Thames Water. See here for more information.

Neighbourhood development plans take a formidable amount of work but they need to be refreshed every now and then to bring them up to date. Stratfield Mortimer was the first parish in West Berkshire to have an NDP made, in 2017. (Pat Wingfield, who was closely involved in this, gave a presentation to Hungerford Town Council and it was his lucid description of the process and its advantages that helped convince the town to start work on its own, which is now nearing completion.) A statement on SMPC’s website says that “the Parish Council has agreed that it is now appropriate to initiate a new NDP as West Berkshire is developing its new Local Plan to run through till 2037. This time it may well be that the village is not asked to take a large new development, but there are likely to be many small developments and other pressures which a new NDP could influence. There is a lot we can do through an NDP to encourage the village to develop in the way residents want. Local policies that help with climate change and the way development looks are some examples of what the NDP can influence.” The next step is to create a steering group which will run the process. See this  page on SMPC’s website for more information.

• A headline on p27 of this week’s Newbury Weekly News caught my eye: “Beenham scaffold depot greenly by council.” One hears of public buildings being illuminated with appropriate colours to celebrate NHS workers, St Patrick’s Day, major sporting triumphs and many other events: but a scaffold depot? And why green? Reading the article quickly cleared up this confusion – in fact it was just a shorthand for planning permission having been granted. I’m rather disappointed by this.

• The most recent meeting of Beenham Parish Council took place on 5 July and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: a vacancy for a councillor; planning applications and decisions; a planning enforcement matter; funding for the Beenham Victory Hall; speeding; the salt bin at Mallard Way; concerns about the proposed housing development at Thatcham. (District Councillor Boeck advised that there will be a consultation on the matter); road-light problems on the A4; the Beenham Primary School relaunch working party; PC assets and projects; the play area; the mobile phone mast; grant awards; and financial matters.

• The most recent meeting of Englefield Parish Council took place on 28 June and you can read the draft minutes here. Items covered included: financial matters; two planning applications; the opening of the Village Hall (on Sunday 17 July) and a grant of £500; winter road gritting; and re-painting the phone box in North Street (for which there was no available budget).

• The most recent meeting of Burghfield Parish Council took place on 10 June and you can read the draft minutes here. Items covered included: a disturbance at the meeting; the skate park; committee reports; and financial matters.

• The most recent meeting of Aldermaston Parish Council took place on 13 July and you’ll be able to download minutes here in due course. Items covered included: a minute’s silence for former Parish Councillor Carla Keyser-Booth who died in June; one planning application (which was objected to following APC’s policy of doing this for any application which is likely to increase traffic on the A340); a discussion about the proposed industrial estate on Paices Hill; a new village sign; and PC communications.

• A reminder that we recently interviewed former Aldermaston PC Chair Dave Shirt shortly after he stepped down from 14 years in the hot seat. You can read this here.

• The most recent meeting of Stratfield Mortimer Parish Council (also the annual meeting) for which minutes are available took place on 6 May and you can read the draft minutes here.

• See last week’s entry below for Stratfield Mortimer PC’s al fresco meeting on 24 June.

• Still in Stratfield Mortimer, District Councillor Graham Bridgman reports in his latest newsletter that “WBC has made an order to record a public footpath running between Stephens Firs and Stephens Road/Victoria Road – the culmination of, and reward for, a lot of effort by SMPC.”

• In the same newsletter, Councillor Bridgman referred to the successful members’ bids in the ward.

• The most recent meeting of Padworth Parish Council took place on 5 May and you can read the minutes here.

• Click here to see the July 2021 edition of the Padworth newsletter, which includes information on local groups and societies and, in a pleasing display of trans-border co-operation, notes on PC meetings from neighbouring parishes.

Thursday 8 July 2021

Click here for information about lateral flow tests available in West Berkshire (note that the site at the Burghfield Community Centre has closed).

• Hose Hill and Theale Road in Burghfield will be closed between 8.00am and 5.00pm each day until 14 July, between Deans Copse Road and Reading Road to enable Volker Highways to carry out highway improvements on the behalf of WBC. The actual work will take place on Hose Hill, but Theale Road will be closed to through traffic. Access to properties on Theale Road, Folly Lane and Bennetts Hill (officially“Bennetts Lane”) will be possible via Theale Road from Burghfield, but not via Hose Hill. A plan of the closure and diversion route can be found here. For all enquiries please contact WBC on 01635 519 080.

• The most recent meeting of Theale Parish Council (also the annual meeting) took place on 21 June and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the new open spaces committee, including its responsibilities and membership; and tree planting in the parish and the funding for this.

• Theale Parish Council’s Environmental Working Group is looking for volunteers to help with a community litter pick on Sunday 1 August at 10.30am. More information here.

• West End Road in Stratfield Mortimer will be closed until 16 August while repairs are carried out by Thames Water. See here for more information.

• A considerable amount of speeding has been reported on St Catherine’s Hill in Stratfield Mortimer and the Neighbourhood Action Group plans to deploy the speed gun in this area shortly.

• The most recent meeting of Englefield Parish Council took place on 28 June and you can read the draft minutes here. Items covered included: financial matters; two planning applications; the opening of the Village Hall (on Sunday 17 July) and a grant of £500; winter road gritting; and re-painting the phone box in North Street (for which there was no available budget).

• The most recent meeting of Burghfield Parish Council took place on 10 June and you can read the draft minutes here. Items covered included: a disturbance at the meeting; the skate park; committee reports; and financial matters.

• The most recent meeting of Aldermaston Parish Council took place on 8 June and you’ll be able to download minutes here in due course. Items covered included: parking in Church Road; five planning applications; the Lidl appeal; resurfacing on the street; speeding; the skateboard ramp; and the proposed boundary changes; and a comment from the former Chairman about the wisdom or otherwise on the government’s continued insistence that all council meetings revert to in-person events, regardless of local circumstances.

• We mentioned a few weeks back that Aldermaston PC Chair Dave Shirt recently stepped down from the top job after 14 years in post. This seemed like a good moment to ask him to explain what kind of things the role involves and to reflect on some of the main issues with which he has had to grapple. Here’s what he had to say.

• The most recent meeting of Stratfield Mortimer Parish Council (also the annual meeting) for which minutes are available took place on 6 May and you can read the draft minutes here.

• Stratfield Mortimer PC also held a meeting on 24 June. This was conducted al fresco in the grounds of the Mortimer Scout Hut. This was because of the change in regulations, which I’ve mentioned many times, preventing meetings from being held remotely after 7 May. This statement from the PC said that “we could not meet indoors”, presumably because no premises were available that could safely accommodate all the participants. The meeting was conduced successfully and nothing appeared to have blown away. As well as various governance matters, the council agreed to initiate a new neighbourhood development plan (Stratfield Mortimer was the first parish in West Berkshire to have one adopted). There will be more news about this in the coming months including a call for volunteers to get involved. The PC also agreed to jointly fund The Street pavement widening project with West Berkshire Council. The minutes will appear on the PC’s website in due course.

• Still in Stratfield Mortimer, District Councillor Graham Bridgman reports in his latest newsletter that “WBC has made an order to record a public footpath running between Stephens Firs and Stephens Road/Victoria Road – the culmination of, and reward for, a lot of effort by SMPC.”

• In the same newsletter, Councillor Bridgman referred to the successful members’ bids in the ward. “I joined with [Lib Dem District Councillor] Royce Longton to create the principal bid we applied for, Solar Panels and Battery Storage for The Scout Hut on Hollybush Lane (1st Burghfield & Sulhamstead Scouts) and was very pleased to see it succeed (I sit on the Bids Panel but took no part in this discussion). The total project comes in at just over £16,830 and our joint bid has produced £8,415.00 towards this. That left me with a little under £800 which I succeeded in getting as a contribution to an Stratfield Mortimer PC project for adult outdoor exercise kit.”

• The most recent meeting of Padworth Parish Council took place on 5 May and you can read the minutes here.

• Click here to see the June 2021 edition of the Padworth newsletter, which includes information on local groups and societies and, in a pleasing display of trans-border co-operation, notes on PC meetings from neighbouring parishes.

• The most recent meeting of Beenham Parish Council took place on 4 May and you can read the minutes here.

Thursday 1 July 2021

Click here for information about lateral flow tests available in West Berkshire (note that the last operational day of the site at the Burghfield Community Centre was 29 June).

• The most recent meeting of Theale Parish Council (also the annual meeting) took place on 21 June and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the new open spaces committee, including its responsibilities and membership; and tree planting in the parish and the funding for this.

• Theale Parish Council’s Environmental Working Group is looking for volunteers to help with a community litter pick on Sunday 1 August at 10.30am. More information here.

• West End Road in Stratfield Mortimer will be closed until 16 August while repairs are carried out by Thames Water. See here for more information.

• Windmill Road in Stratfield Mortimer will be closed on the 5 to 8 July 2021 between its junctions with Spring Lane and with Kings Street. See here for more information.

• A considerable amount of speeding has been reported on St Catherine’s Hill in Stratfield Mortimer and the Neighbourhood Action Group plans to deploy the speed gun in this area shortly.

• The most recent meeting of Englefield Parish Council took place on 28 June and you can read the draft minutes here. Items covered included: financial matters; two planning applications; the opening of the Village Hall (on Sunday 17 July) and a grant of £500; winter road gritting; and re-painting the phone box in North Street (for which there was no available budget).

• The most recent meeting of Burghfield Parish Council took place on 10 June and you can read the draft minutes here. Items covered included: a disturbance at the meeting; the skate park; committee reports; and financial matters.

• The most recent meeting of Aldermaston Parish Council took place on 8 June and you’ll be able to download minutes here in due course. Items covered included: parking in Church Road; five planning applications; the Lidl appeal; resurfacing on the street; speeding; the skateboard ramp; and the proposed boundary changes; and a comment from the former Chairman about the wisdom or otherwise on the government’s continued insistence that all council meetings revert to in-person events, regardless of local circumstances.

• The most recent meeting of Stratfield Mortimer Parish Council (also the annual meeting) took place on 6 May and you can read the draft minutes here.

• The most recent meeting of Padworth Parish Council took place on 5 May and you can read the minutes here.

• Click here to see the June 2021 edition of the Padworth newsletter, which includes information on local groups and societies and, in a pleasing display of trans-border co-operation, notes on PC meetings from neighbouring parishes.

• The most recent meeting of Beenham Parish Council took place on 4 May and you can read the minutes here.

Thursday 24 June 2021

Click here for information about lateral flow tests available in West Berkshire (note that the last operational day of the site at the Burghfield Community Centre will be 29 June).

• The most recent meeting of Theale Parish Council (also the annual meeting) took place on 21 June and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the new open spaces committee, including its responsibilities and membership; and tree planting in the parish and the funding for this.

• Theale Parish Council’s Environmental Working Group is looking for volunteers to help with a community litter pick on Sunday 1 August at 10.30am. More information here.

• West End Road in Stratfield Mortimer will be closed until 18 August while repairs are carried out by Thames Water. See here for more information. (However, according to this FB page, this might not in fact be happening…)

• A considerable amount of speeding has been reported on St Catherine’s Hill in Stratfield Mortimer and the Neighbourhood Action Group plans to deploy the speed gun in this area shortly.

• The most recent meeting of Aldermaston Parish Council took place on 8 June and you’ll be able to download minutes here in due course. Items covered included: parking in Church Road; five planning applications; the Lidl appeal; resurfacing on the street; speeding; the skateboard ramp; and the proposed boundary changes; and a comment from the former Chairman about the wisdom or otherwise on the government’s continued insistence that all council meetings revert to in-person events, regardless of local circumstances.

• The most recent meeting of Burghfield Parish Council took place on 6 May and you can read the draft minutes here.

• The most recent meeting of Stratfield Mortimer Parish Council (also the annual meeting) took place on 6 May and you can read the draft minutes here.

• The most recent meeting of Padworth Parish Council took place on 5 May and you can read the minutes here.

• Click here to see the June 2021 edition of the Padworth newsletter, which includes information on local groups and societies and, in a pleasing display of trans-border co-operation, notes on PC meetings from neighbouring parishes.

• The most recent meeting of Beenham Parish Council took place on 4 May and you can read the minutes here.

• The most recent meeting of Englefield Parish Council took place on 5 May and you can read the draft minutes here.

Thursday 17 June 2021

• The timetables for the West Berkshire Council’s mobile community collect service for lateral-flow tests have recently changed – details can be found here.

• The most recent meeting of Theale Parish Council (also the annual meeting) took place on 6 May and you can read the minutes here.

• Theale Parish Council’s Environmental Working Group is looking for volunteers to help with a community litter pick on Sunday 1 August at 10.30am. More information here.

• The most recent meeting of Aldermaston Parish Council took place on 8 June and you’ll be able to download minutes here in due course. Items covered included: parking in Church Road; five planning applications; the Lidl appeal; resurfacing on the street; speeding; the skateboard ramp; and the proposed boundary changes; and a comment from the former Chairman about the wisdom or otherwise on the government’s continued insistence that all council meetings revert to in-person events, regardless of local circumstances.

• It seems that there is a cat burglar in Burghfield which seems to be obsessed with stealing gloves. Ours just bring in the usual half-eaten carrion (apparently they do this because they sense we’re not very good hunters and want to help teach us).

• The most recent meeting of Burghfield Parish Council took place on 6 May and you can read the draft minutes here.

• The most recent meeting of Stratfield Mortimer Parish Council (also the annual meeting) took place on 6 May and you can read the draft minutes here.

• The most recent meeting of Padworth Parish Council took place on 5 May and you can read the minutes here.

• Click here to see the June 2021 edition of the Padworth newsletter, which includes information on local groups and societies and, in a pleasing display of trans-border co-operation, notes on PC meetings from neighbouring parishes.

• The most recent meeting of Beenham Parish Council took place on 4 May and you can read the minutes here.

• The most recent meeting of Englefield Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 17 March and you can read the draft minutes here. You can also read the Chairman’s report at the annual parish assembly here and the Clerk’s report here.

Thursday 10 June 2021

• The timetables for the West Berkshire Council’s mobile community collect service for lateral-flow tests have recently changed – details can be found here.

• The Great British Spring Clean takes place between 28 May and 13 June and many events will be organised by local councils. Click on the relevant link below to see how you can get involved with what’s happening in your town or village.

• The most recent meeting of Theale Parish Council (also the annual meeting) took place on 6 May and you can read the minutes here.

• Theale Parish Council’s Environmental Working Group is looking for volunteers to help with a community litter pick on Sunday 1 August at 10.30am. More information here.

• A consultation on a proposal to develop a specialist education centre for young people with complex social, emotional and mental health (SEMH) needs is nw open and will remain so until 13 June (so not long now). This further asks for views on the development of the old Theale Primary School site at Church Street, Theale, Berkshire RG7 5BZ as a potential location.

• The most recent meeting of Aldermaston Parish Council took place on 8 June and you’ll be able to download minutes here in due course. Items covered included: parking in Church Road; five planning applications; the Lidl appeal; resurfacing on the street; speeding; the skateboard ramp; and the proposed boundary changes.

The former Chair, Dave Shirt (who had served in the post for 14 years), also had the following comments to make about council meetings in general. “We met face-to-face in the Parish Hall for the first time since the outbreak of Covid-19.  We were compelled to meet this way following the Government’s decision not to extend the period of remote meetings. Despite additional precautions, there were still additional health risks, and we remain unconvinced that this justified the greater scope for public participation.” I think many other councils would agree with these sentiment.

• The most recent meeting of Burghfield Parish Council took place on 6 May and you can read the draft minutes here.

• The most recent meeting of Stratfield Mortimer Parish Council (also the annual meeting) took place on 6 May and you can read the draft minutes here.

• In his latest newsletter, which you can read here, Councillor Graham Bridgman said that he was supporting plans for a Community Fibre Partnership to improve broadband in Stratfield Mortimer.

• In the same newsletter, he also referred to the fly tipping at Budgens (“evidence has been gathered and enquiries are under way”) and the hope that the “rather expensive” footway proposal at St Mary’s school can be made a bit less so.

• The most recent meeting of Padworth Parish Council took place on 5 May and you can read the minutes here.

• Click here to see the June 2021 edition of the Padworth newsletter, which includes information on local groups and societies and, in a pleasing display of trans-border co-operation, notes on PC meetings from neighbouring parishes. It also has a photo of the inside of Aldermaston Parish Hall, which I’ve never been to. What an attractive building it appears to be. You don’t see too many minstrels’ galleries these days.

• The most recent meeting of Beenham Parish Council took place on 4 May and you can read the minutes here.

• The most recent meeting of Englefield Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 17 March and you can read the draft minutes here. You can also read the Chairman’s report at the annual parish assembly here and the Clerk’s report here.

Thursday 3 June 2021

• The timetables for the West Berkshire Council’s mobile community collect service for lateral-flow testshave recently changed – details can be found here.

• The Great British Spring Clean takes place between 28 May and 13 June and many events will be organised by local councils. Click on the relevant link below to see how you can get involved with what’s happening in your town or village.

• The most recent meeting of Theale Parish Council (also the annual meeting) took place on 6 May and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the election of the Chairman and Vice Chairman; various financial and year-end matters; the district councillor’s report; the proposed specialist education centre (see paragraph below); traffic calming at the A4/A340 roundabout; planning applications; the recreation ground survey; the member’s bid; and the community litter pick (on Sunday 1 August).

• A consultation on a proposal to develop a specialist education centre for young people with complex social, emotional and mental health (SEMH) needs is nw open and will remain so until 13 June. This further asks for views on the development of the old Theale Primary School site at Church Street, Theale, Berkshire RG7 5BZ as a potential location.

• Work has started on the 375-home development at Lakeside in Theale. One of the odder aspects of the plan seems to be that the developers, Ridgepoint, will cut down several 15-year-old trees (or, at least, they have “marked these for felling”) which provide valuable screening and then replant saplings in more or less the same place. On the face of it this doesn’t seem to make a great deal of sense and discussions are currently taking place to try to resolve this. Perhaps the developers want to claim that they’ve planted trees.

• The most recent meeting of Burghfield Parish Council took place on 6 May and you can read the draft minutes here. Items covered included: graffiti; five questions from members of the public; election of the Chairman and Vice Chairman; confirmation that the PC now has general powers of competence; confirmation of delegated powers for decision-making until 30 June; committee appointments; reports from the district councillors; the Community Committee; and financial matters.

• The most recent meeting of Stratfield Mortimer Parish Council (also the annual meeting) took place on 6 May and you can read the draft minutes here. Items covered included: the election of the Chairman and Vice Chairman; councillors’ responsibilities and memberships of committees and working parties; the settlement boundary review; tree works; an additional CIP payment from WBC (parish councils receive a higher percentage of CIL payments in the Paris if a neighbourhood development plan is in place, which it is in SM); footpaths; pavement widening; the Mortimer to Burghfield footpath and cycleway; the nature of meetings until 21 June 2021 (with more powers being delegated to the Clerk); the phone box; moving the table-tennis table; community broadband; WBC members’ bids; financial matters; planning decision; and the neighbourhood development plan.

• In his latest newsletter, which you can read here, Councillor Graham Bridgman said that he was supporting plans for a Community Fibre Partnership to improve broadband in Stratfield Mortimer.

• In the same newsletter, he also referred to the fly tipping at Budgens (“evidence has been gathered and enquiries are under way”) and the hope that the “rather expensive” footway proposal at St Mary’s school can be made a bit less so.

• Something else Councillor Bridgman might want to get involved with in his capacity of Deputy Leader is explained in the letter on p17 of this week’s NWN (“What can we do about this situation?”) which concerns the problems caused to the writer and their neighbours by having a half-finished building site at the end of the gardens in Tilehurst. This seems to be case of lack of enforcement about something that may, or perhaps may not, be WBC’s responsibility but which is clearly causing grief to several council-tax payers. I look forward to writing about a resolution to this problem next week…

• The most recent meeting of Aldermaston Parish Council (also the annual meeting) took place on 11 May and you can download minutes here. Items covered included: the resignation of Dave Shirt as Chairman, after 14 years, and his replacement by Sophie Crawford; the development at Paices Hill; parking in Church Road; the continuing issue (related to both of these matters) of traffic on the A340; three planning applications; the co-option of a new councillor; and the problem of dog mess (which seems to be increasingly affecting every corner of the district).

• The most recent meeting of Padworth Parish Council took place on 5 May and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the co-option of a new member; the Village Hall; the local water supply; fencing; the changed ownership of the field near the Hall; financial matters; car parking; speeding; planning matters; footpaths; possible sewerage problems; the village newsletter; and the village’s conservation assessment.

• Click here to see the May 2021 edition of the Padworth newsletter, which includes information on local groups and societies.

• The most recent meeting of Beenham Parish Council took place on 4 May and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the election of the Chairman and Vice Chairman; councillors’ responsibilities and memberships of committees and working parties; various year-end matters; a councillor vacancy; planning applications; fading white lines on the A4/Beenham Hill junction; the WI bench; a request to Google about road names on the maps; the Primary School; the mobile phone mast; repairs to and the re-opening of the Community Room; litter bins; financial matters; and the nature of meetings until 21 June 2021 (with more powers being delegated to the Clerk).

• The most recent meeting of Englefield Parish Council took place on 17 March and you can read the draft minutes here. You can also read the Chairman’s report at the annual parish assembly here and the Clerk’s report here.

Thursday 27 May 2021

• The timetables for the West Berkshire Council’s mobile community collect service for lateral-flow tests have recently changed – details can be found here.

• The Great British Spring Clean takes place between 28 May and 13 June and many events will be organised by local councils. Click on the relevant link below to see how you can get involved with what’s happening in your town or village.

• The most recent meeting of Theale Parish Council took place on 19 April and you can read the minutes here.

Theale held its annual meeting on 26 April and you can read the minutes here. These mainly comprise reports from the Thames Valley Police, Theale PC, Dr Ellerton’s charity, Holy Trinity Church, the Scouts, Theale Green School, the Primary School, Theale Help, the Cricket Club and WBC member Alan Macro.

• A consultation on a proposal to develop a specialist education centre for young people with complex social, emotional and mental health (SEMH) needs is nw open and will remain so until 13 June. This further asks for views on the development of the old Theale Primary School site at Church Street, Theale, Berkshire RG7 5BZ as a potential location.

• Work has started on the 375-home development at Lakeside in Theale. One of the odder aspects of the plan seems to be that the developers, Ridgepoint, will cut down several 15-year-old trees which provide valuable screening and then replant saplings in more or less the same place. On the face of it this doesn’t seem to make a great deal of sense and discussions are currently taking place to try to resolve this.

• The most recent meeting of Stratfield Mortimer Parish Council (also the annual meeting) took place on 6 May and you can read the draft minutes here. Items covered included: the election of the Chairman and Vice Chairman; councillors’ responsibilities and memberships of committees and working parties; the settlement boundary review; tree works; an additional CIP payment from WBC (parish councils receive a higher percentage of CIL payments in the Paris if a neighbourhood development plan is in place, which it is in SM); footpaths; pavement widening; the Mortimer to Burghfield footpath and cycleway; the nature of meetings until 21 June 2021 (with more powers being delegated to the Clerk); the phone box; moving the table-tennis table; community broadband; WBC members’ bids; financial matters; planning decision; and the neighbourhood development plan.

• The most recent meeting of Aldermaston Parish Council (also the annual meeting) took place on 11 May and you can download minutes here . Items covered included: the resignation of Dave Shirt as Chairman, after 14 years, and his replacement by Sophie Crawford; the development at Paices Hill; parking in Church Road; the continuing issue (related to both of these matters) of traffic on the A340; three planning applications; the co-option of a new councillor; and the problem of dog mess (which seems to be increasingly affecting every corner of the district).

• The most recent meeting of Padworth Parish Council took place on 5 May and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the co-option of a new member; the Village Hall; the local water supply; fencing; the changed ownership of the field near the Hall; financial matters; car parking; speeding; planning matters; footpaths; possible sewerage problems; the village newsletter; and the village’s conservation assessment.

• Click here to see the May 2021 edition of the Padworth newsletter, which includes information on local groups and societies.

• The most recent meeting of Beenham Parish Council took place on 4 May and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the election of the Chairman and Vice Chairman; councillors’ responsibilities and memberships of committees and working parties; various year-end matters; a councillor vacancy; planning applications; fading white lines on the A4/Beenham Hill junction; the WI bench; a request to Google about road names on the maps; the Primary School; the mobile phone mast; repairs to and the re-opening of the Community Room; litter bins; financial matters; and the nature of meetings until 21 June 2021 (with more powers being delegated to the Clerk).

• The most recent meeting of Burghfield Parish Council took place on 8 April and you can read the draft minutes here.

• The most recent meeting of Englefield Parish Council took place on 17 March and you can read the draft minutes here. You can also read the Chairman’s report at the annual parish assembly here and the Clerk’s report here.

Thursday 20 May 2021

• See here for details of the Covid lateral flow tests that are available in Burghfield.

• The timetables for the West Berkshire Council’s mobile community collect service for these lateral-flow tests is changing from Monday 24 May – details can be found here.

• The most recent meeting of Theale Parish Council took place on 19 April and you can read the minutes here.

Click here for details of Covid lateral flow tests, which are available at four sites across the district (Hungerford, Newbury, Thatcham and Burghfield), and home-testing kits.

• A consultation on a proposal to develop a specialist education centre for young people with complex social, emotional and mental health (SEMH) needs is nw open and will remain so until 13 June. This further asks for views on the development of the old Theale Primary School site at Church Street, Theale, Berkshire RG7 5BZ as a potential location.

• Work has started on the 375-home development at Lakeside in Theale. One of the odder aspects of the plan seems to be that the developers, Ridgepoint, will cut down several 15-year-old trees which provide valuable screening and then replant saplings in more or less the same place. On the face of it this doesn’t seem to make a great deal of sense and discussions are currently taking place to try to resolve this.

• The most recent meeting of Stratfield Mortimer Parish Council took place on 8 April and you can read the draft minutes here.

• The most recent meeting of Aldermaston Parish Council (also the annual meeting) tool place on 11 May: the minutes will appear here in due course (until then you can listen to a recording of it). Items covered included: the resignation of Dave Shirt as Chairman, after 14 years, and his replacement by Sophie Crawford; the development at Paices Hill; parking in Church Road; the continuing issue (related to both of these matters) of traffic on the A340; three planning applications; the co-option of a new councillor; and the problem of dog mess (which seems to be increasingly affecting every corner of the district).

• The most recent meeting of Padworth Parish Council took place on 5 May and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the co-option of a new member; the Village Hall; the local water supply; fencing; the changed ownership of the field near the Hall; financial matters; car parking; speeding; planning matters; footpaths; possible sewerage problems; the village newsletter; and the village’s conservation assessment.

• Click here to see the May 2021 edition of the Padworth newsletter, which includes information on local groups and societies.

• The most recent meeting of Beenham Parish Council took place on 12 April and you can read the minutes here.

• The most recent meeting of Burghfield Parish Council took place on 8 April and you can read the draft minutes here.

• The most recent meeting of Englefield Parish Council took place on 17 March and you can read the draft minutes here. You can also read the Chairman’s report at the annual parish assembly here and the Clerk’s report here.

Thursday 13 May 2021

• See here for details of the Covid lateral flow tests that are available in Burghfield.

• The most recent meeting of Theale Parish Council took place on 19 April and you can read the minutes here.

Click here for details of Covid lateral flow tests, which are available at four sites across the district (Hungerford, Newbury, Thatcham and Burghfield), and home-testing kits.

• A number of improvements are planned to Theale station – see here for more.

• The most recent meeting of Stratfield Mortimer Parish Council took place on 8 April and you can read the draft minutes here.

• In his most recent newsletter (which you can read here in full) Councillor Graham Bridgman writes “Discussions continue with the school and WBC Education service about the land earmarked within the neighbourhood development plan site and I have been in email correspondence with the Englefield Estate about what was said about the land at the public examination of the (then draft) Plan.”

• The most recent meeting of Aldermaston Parish Council (also the annual meeting) tool place on 11 May: the minutes will appear here in due course (until then you can listen to a recording of it). Items covered included: the resignation of Dave Shirt as Chairman, after 14 years, and his replacement by Sophie Crawford; the development at Paices Hill; parking in Church Road; the continuing issue (related to both of these matters) of traffic on the A340; three planning applications; the co-option of a new councillor; and the problem of dog mess (which seems to be increasingly affecting every corner of the district).

• The most recent meeting of Padworth Parish Council took place on 5 May and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the co-option of a new member; the Village Hall; the local water supply; fencing; the changed ownership of the field near the Hall; financial matters; car parking; speeding; planning matters; footpaths; possible sewerage problems; the village newsletter; and the village’s conservation assessment.

• Click here to see the May 2021 edition of the Padworth newsletter, which includes information on local groups and societies.

• The most recent meeting of Beenham Parish Council took place on 12 April and you can read the minutes here.

• The most recent meeting of Burghfield Parish Council took place on 8 April and you can read the draft minutes here.

• The most recent meeting of Englefield Parish Council took place on 17 March and you can read the draft minutes here.

Thursday 6 May 2021

• See here for details of the Covid lateral flow tests that are available in Burghfield.

• The most recent meeting of Theale Parish Council took place on 19 April and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: anti-social behaviour; councillors’ surgeries on Saturday mornings; planning matters; changes to hire charges; the possibility of the PC becoming the sole trustee of the John Cumber Hall; objections to the proposed settlement boundary; a new fence; a grant of £2,842 to West Berkshire Library Service; a grant of £100 to Citizens Advice West Berkshire; and the installation of a bench in memory of Peter Sollis.

Click here for details of Covid lateral flow tests, which are available at four sites across the district (Hungerford, Newbury, Thatcham and Burghfield), and home-testing kits.

• The most recent meeting of Beenham Parish Council took place on 12 April and you can read the minutes here.

• A number of improvements are planned to Theale station – see here for more.

• The most recent meeting of Stratfield Mortimer Parish Council took place on 8 April and you can read the draft minutes here.

• In his most recent newsletter (which you can read here in full) Councillor Graham Bridgman writes “Discussions continue with the school and WBC Education service about the land earmarked within the neighbourhood development plan site and I have been in email correspondence with the Englefield Estate about what was said about the land at the public examination of the (then draft) Plan.”

• The most recent meeting of Burghfield Parish Council took place on 4 March and you can read the draft minutes here.

• The most recent meeting of Padworth Parish Council took place on 15 March and you can see the minutes here.

• The most recent meeting of Aldermaston Parish Council tool place on 13 April and you can read the minutes here.

• The most recent meeting of Englefield Parish Council took place on 17 March and you can read the draft minutes here. Items covered included: concerts at Englefield House in July; financial update; approval of the 2021-22 budget; the confirmation of a grant to Citizens Advice West Berkshire; traffic at the junction of The Street and the A340; planning applications; the Village Hall; and the risk and asset registers.

• Click here to see the May 2021 edition of the Padworth newsletter, which includes information on local groups and societies.

 

Thursday 29 April 2021

• See here for details of the Covid lateral flow tests that are available in Burghfield.

• The most recent meeting of Theale Parish Council took place on 19 April and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: anti-social behaviour; councillors’ surgeries on Saturday mornings; planning matters; changes to hire charges; the possibility of the PC becoming the sole trustee of the John Cumber Hall; objections to the proposed settlement boundary; a new fence; a grant of £2,842 to West Berkshire Library Service; a grant of £100 to Citizens Advice West Berkshire; and the installation of a bench in memory of Pete

• The same council produced this chart showing how its precept is spent.

• It appears that the long-running uncertainty about the Lakeside development in Theale – planning permission for which was first granted back in the 20th century – may be about to take a step forward due to the interests in the scheme having been recently acquired by a new developer. The current permission is for 375 homes.

• The most recent meeting of Beenham Parish Council took place on 12 April and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the pergola at the pub; a councillor vacancy; planning matters; the PC’s concern at the withdrawal of the ReadiBus service (for more on this, see our Weekly News for Newbury); salt bins; the Primary School’s relaunch working party; quotes for various PC projects; the refurbishment of the toilets at the Community Room; a grant of £300 to Citizens Advice West Berkshire; re-surfacing the car park; and financial matters.

• A number of improvements are planned to Theale station – see here for more.

• The most recent meeting of Stratfield Mortimer Parish Council took place on 11 March and you can read the draft minutes here.

• The most recent meeting of Burghfield Parish Council took place on 4 March and you can read the draft minutes here.

• The most recent meeting of Padworth Parish Council took place on 15 March and you can see the minutes here.

• The most recent meeting of Aldermaston Parish Council tool place on 13 April and you can read the minutes here.

• The most recent meeting of Englefield Parish Council took place on 17 March and you can read the draft minutes here. Items covered included: concerts at Englefield House in July; financial update; approval of the 2021-22 budget; the confirmation of a grant to Citizens Advice West Berkshire; traffic at the junction of The Street and the A340; planning applications; the Village Hall; the risk and asset registers; and the the Annual Meeting (23 May) and the Annual Parish Meeting (28 April).

• Click here to see the April 2021 edition of the Padworth newsletter, which includes information on local groups and societies.

Thursday 22 April 2021

• See here for details of the Covid lateral flow tests that are available in Burghfield.

• It appears that the long-running uncertainty about the Lakeside development in Theale – planning permission for which was first granted back in the 20th century – may be about to take a step forward due to the interests in the scheme having been recently acquired by a new developer. The current permission is for 375 homes.

• A number of improvements are planned to Theale station – see here for more.

• The most recent meeting of Stratfield Mortimer Parish Council took place on 11 March and you can read the draft minutes here.

• The most recent meeting of Burghfield Parish Council took place on 4 March and you can read the draft minutes here.

• The most recent meeting of Theale Parish Council took place on 8 March and you can read the minutes here. There was also an extraordinary meeting on 22 March which was only concerning with wildflower sowing and the award of the grounds maintenance contract.

• Theale parish’s annual meeting will take place remotely on Monday 26 April 2021 at 7:30pm.

• The same council produced this chart showing how its precept is spent.

• The most recent meeting of Beenham Parish Council took place on 1 March and you can see the minutes here.

• The most recent meeting of Padworth Parish Council took place on 15 March and you can see the minutes here.

• The most recent meeting of Aldermaston Parish Council tool place on 13 April. The minutes will appear here in due course and until then you can watch a Zoom recording of the meeting. This was also the Annual Parish Meeting at which the PC reviewed its activities over the past year and received similar reports from local organisations. In a masterly under-statement, the Chairman described the last 12 months as “unusual”. Despite the challenges posed by Covid, he mentioned some solid achievements (including the play equipment at the Recreation Ground and the purchase of speed monitoring equipment), summarised the main planning issues reported that the PC was financially bound. Reports were also received from several local groups and the neighbourhood policing team. A PC meeting then followed the APM. Items covered included: the PC’s policy towards Lidl’s appeal against its planning refusal; and two other planning applications. The meeting concluded with the observation from the Chairman that “in its wisdom, the government has decided not to extend the law that allows Parish Councils to meet remotely. This conflicts with its other advice not to meet indoors. We decided to continue our meetings via Zoom until it is safe to meet face-to-face.”

• The most recent meeting of Englefield Parish Council took place on 17 March and you can read the draft minutes here. Items covered included: concerts at Englefield House in July; financial update; approval of the 2021-22 budget; the confirmation of a grant to Citizens Advice West Berkshire; traffic at the junction of The Street and the A340; planning applications; the Village Hall; the risk and asset registers; and the the Annual Meeting (23 May) and the Annual Parish Meeting (28 April).

• Click here to see the April 2021 edition of the Padworth newsletter, which includes information on local groups and societies. It also has a message of congratulations to Hazel Ewart who has been nominated in the 2020-21 Berkshire High Sherrif Awards for her community work over many years.

Thursday 15 April 2021

• See here for details of the Covid lateral flow tests that are available in Burghfield.

• A number of improvements are planned to Theale station – see here for more.

• In his latest newsletter, Councillor Graham Bridgman has confirmed some aspects of the Highways Improvement Plan affecting Burghfield, Beech Hill and Stratfield Mortimer over the next three years.

• He also reports the progress on three possible changes to two public footpaths in Stratfield Mortimer and one in Wokefield.

• The most recent meeting of Stratfield Mortimer Parish Council took place on 11 March and you can read the draft minutes here.

• The most recent meeting of Burghfield Parish Council took place on 4 March and you can read the draft minutes here.

• The most recent meeting of Theale Parish Council took place on 8 March and you can read the minutes here. There was also an extraordinary meeting on 22 March which was only concerning with wildflower sowing and the award of the grounds maintenance contract.

• The same council produced this chart showing how its precept is spent.

• The most recent meeting of Beenham Parish Council took place on 1 March and you can see the minutes here.

• The most recent meeting of Padworth Parish Council took place on 15 March and you can see the minutes here. Items covered included; a resignation from the PC; the Padworth and Aldermaston Wharf Show on 4 July; the possible Red Sky music event in August; the Village Hall; financial matters; one planning application; the parish’s conservation area; litter picking; rapid response to a fallen tree; and the annual parish meeting on 5 May.

• The most recent meeting of Aldermaston Parish Council tool place on 13 April. The minutes will appear here in due course and until then you can watch a Zoom recording of the meeting. This was also the Annual Parish Meeting at which the PC reviewed its activities over the past year and received similar reports from local organisations. In a masterly under-statement, the Chairman described the last 12 months as “unusual”. Despite the challenges posed by Covid, he mentioned some solid achievements (including the play equipment at the Recreation Ground and the purchase of speed monitoring equipment), summarised the main planning issues reported that the PC was financially bound. Reports were also received from several local groups and the neighbourhood policing team. A PC meeting then followed the APM. Items covered included: the PC’s policy towards Lidl’s appeal against its planning refusal; and two other planning applications. The meeting concluded with the observation from the Chairman that “in its wisdom, the government has decided not to extend the law that allows Parish Councils to meet remotely.  This conflicts with their other advice not to meet indoors.  We decided to continue our meetings via Zoom until it is safe to meet face-to-face.”

• The most recent meeting of Englefield Parish Council took place on 17 March and you can read the draft minutes here. Items covered included: concerts at Englefield House in July; financial update; approval of the 2021-22 budget; the confirmation of a grant to Citizens Advice West Berkshire; traffic at the ruction of The Street and the A340; planning applications; the Village Hall; the risk and asset registers; and the the Annual Meeting (23 May) and the Annual Parish Meeting (28 April).

Thursday 8 April 2021

• See here for details of the Covid lateral flow tests that are available in Burghfield.

• A number of improvements are planned to Theale station – see here for more. There was also an extraordinary meeting on 22 March which was only concerning with wildflower sowing and the award of the grounds maintenance contract.

• In his latest newsletter, Councillor Graham Bridgman has confirmed some aspects of the Highways Improvement Plan affecting Burghfield, Beech Hill and Stratfield Mortimer over the next three years.

• He also reports the progress on three possible changes to two public footpaths in Stratfield Mortimer and one in Wokefield.

• The most recent meeting of Stratfield Mortimer Parish Council took place on 11 March and you can read the draft minutes here. Items covered included: St Catherine’s Hill lay-by; the Openreach Community Fibre Partnership; several planning applications; reports from committees and working parties; councillor allowances (which will not be taken); the cricket nets; the need for a new councillor; and financial matters.

• The most recent meeting of Burghfield Parish Council took place on 4 March and you can read the draft minutes here. Items covered included: the NDP; reports from the various committees; financial matters; and refurbishment work at the Village Hall.

• The most recent meeting of Theale Parish Council took place on 8 March and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the co-option of two new councillors; anti-social behaviour; planning applications; and the grounds maintenance contract.

• The same council produced this chart showing how its precept is spent.

• The most recent meeting of Beenham Parish Council took place on 1 March and you can see the minutes here.

• The most recent meeting of Padworth Parish Council took place on 15 March and you can see the minutes here. Items covered included; a resignation from the PC; the Padworth and Aldermaston Wharf Show on 4 July; the possible Red Sky music event in August; the Village Hall; financial matters; one planning application; the parish’s conservation area; litter picking; rapid response to a fallen tree; and the annual parish meeting on 5 May.

• The most recent meeting of Aldermaston Parish Council tool place on 9 March and you can see the minutes here.

• The most recent meeting of Englefield Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 13 January and you can read the draft minutes here.

• Click here to see the March 2021 edition of the Padworth newsletter.

Thursday 1 April 2021

• See here for details of the Covid lateral flow tests that are available in Burghfield.

• A number of improvements are planned to Theale station – see here for more.

• The most recent meeting of Stratfield Mortimer Parish Council took place on 11 March and you can read the draft minutes here. Items covered included: St Catherine’s Hill lay-by; the Openreach Community Fibre Partnership; several planning applications; reports from committees and working parties; councillor allowances (which will not be taken); the cricket nets; the need for a new councillor; and financial matters.

• The most recent meeting of Burghfield Parish Council took place on 4 March and you can read the draft minutes here. Items covered included: the NDP; reports from the various committees; financial matters; and refurbishment work at the Village Hall.

• The most recent meeting of Theale Parish Council took place on 8 March and you can read the minutes here. Items covered included: the co-option of two new councillors; anti-social behaviour; planning applications; and the grounds maintenance contract.

• The same council produced this chart showing how its precept is spent.

• The most recent meeting of Beenham Parish Council took place on 1 March and you can see the minutes here.

• The most recent meeting of Padworth Parish Council took place on 15 March and you can see the minutes here. Items covered included; a resignation from the PC; the Padworth and Aldermaston Wharf Show on 4 July; the possible Red Sky music event in August; the Village Hall; financial matters; one planning application; the parish’s conservation area; litter picking; rapid response to a fallen tree; and the annual parish meeting on 5 May.

• The most recent meeting of Aldermaston Parish Council tool place on 9 March and you can see the minutes here. Items discussed included: the co-option of a new councillor; a small number of planning applications; grants agreed from the PC to local organisations; and the problems of the broadband service in some parts of the parish.

• The most recent meeting of Englefield Parish Council for which minutes are available took place on 13 January and you can read the draft minutes here.

• Click here to see the March 2021 edition of the Padworth newsletter.

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