Hungerford Town Council

Events for week beginning 12th November 2018

Monday 12th November 7.00pm Environment & Planning committee meeting at 7.00pm in main Library room.

Agenda
Monday 12th November 8.15pm Tourism & Economy committee meeting in main Library room.

Agenda
Tuesday 13th November 7.00pm Finance & General Purposes committee meeting in HTC office.

Agenda
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Welcome to Hungerford Town Council's Website

Our website aims to inform you about the activities of the Council and to invite your comments.

There are 15 volunteer Councillors who are supported by the Town Clerk, Deputy Clerk and RFO. Full Council meets every month and there are five main committees and the timetable for these is listed in the calendar. Town issues are actively debated and actions taken to try and make life better for the people of Hungerford.

If you have any concerns or issues please contact a Councillor, or contact the Town Council Office.

The Town Council office is situated in the new Library building with automatic doors and is next to Church Street Car Park which has disabled parking.

Hungerford Christmas Lights 2018

ImageWork is currently underway installing the lights for Hungerford's amazing annual Christmas Lights display.  The switch on takes place on Sunday 2nd December 2018, entertainment starts at 4pm with the lights being switched on at 5pm by Sally Taylor MBE from BBC South Today.  If you wish to make a donation towards our stunning display we have a funding page on The Good Exchange and if you are able to donate through this link https://app.thegoodexchange.com/project/12425/hungerford-town-council/hungerford-christmas-lights-2018 the Greenham Common Trust will match fund your donation.  Thank you for your generosity. 

West Berkshire Council Press Release: Removal of unwanted green bins

We have received the following press release from WBC:

West Berkshire Council will be arranging collection of unwanted green bins over the next few months. Residents who do not wish to subscribe to the garden waste service or use their green bin to recycle food waste can request a collection online to have their green bin removed from their property

We would encourage residents to use their green bin to recycle food waste or to use them for something other than garden waste. Some residents have chosen to use them for extra storage, or to convert them into a water butt, wormery or composter.

Request for a green bin to be collected at www.westberks.gov.uk/unwantedgreenbin

West Berkshire Council Public Consultation

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West Berkshire Council has started a public consultation on budget proposals which affect some frontline services. They are keen that as many residents, groups and organisations as possible have the opportunity to review the proposals and respond if they want to by the deadline of 23rd December.  The information can be found at: www.westberks.gov.uk/budgetproposals

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Smarten up Hungerford

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Hungerford 2036 Neighbourhood Plan Update

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If you wish to be kept informed of progress, please sign up to our mailing list by clicking on the link below and entering your email at the bottom of the page

Press Release from the Canal & River Trust - Feeding the Ducks!

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PRESS RELEASE - 30 July 2018

CHARITY URGES CANAL VISITORS TO FEED DUCKS HEALTHY SNACKS

The Canal & River Trust, the charity that cares for the Kennet & Avon Canal, is urging visitors to Hungerford Wharf to ditch the bread and feed healthy snacks to the ducks.

Working with Hungerford Town Council the Canal & River Trust is asking local people to help improve the diets of ducks and swans by feeding them natural treats such as leafy greens, sweetcorn, oats and vegetables.

Hungerford Wharf is a great spot for families to enjoy but feeding bread to ducks is bad for their diets. Any leftover bread attracts vermin and having too many birds in one place creates an excess of bird droppings. Bread is often left floating in the water encouraging algae which can be harmful to birds and fish.

Caroline Robson, from the Canal & River Trust, said: “Getting up close to the wildlife on our waterways is one of the simple joys of being on the canal and feeding the ducks is a great family activity. We would like visitors to think about what they are feeding the ducks and to ask them to make a small change to improve their diets. Ducks need a varied diet and feeding them bread is a bit like giving them a pizza everyday which isn’t good for their health.”

Helen Simpson, Mayor of Hungerford Town Council, said: “Hungerford Wharf is a really popular spot to feed the ducks.  However, we have noticed that left over bread has been attracting vermin, such as rats and feral pigeons, which isn’t nice for the visitors. By changing what we feed the ducks our wildlife gets to enjoy a healthier diet, and we also reduce the problem of having left over bits of bread and food at the wharf area.”

For more information on the Canal & River Trust, including finding out how you can support our work by donating money or volunteering with us visit www.canalrivertrust.org.uk

 

-ENDS-

 

 

Maintenance of Grassed Areas in the Town

Following a number of comments / complaints from members of the public regarding the maintenance of the grassed areas in the town this year, HTC has received the following statement from the Countryside Manager at WBC, whose responsibilities include the Grounds Maintenance Contract:

"I took the opportunity on Monday to visit Hungerford and look at the verges under this Council’s maintenance and also some of the open spaces including Canal Walk by the edge of the Kennet and Avon Canal. 

Firstly let me say at the outset that the cutting of the grass verges and some open spaces in the District is not as we would expect.  I am unhappy with the current situation which does not meet the high expectations I set.  There are however mitigating circumstances. The maintenance contract is for 8 cuts in a growing year, which equates to about 1 cut every month in a good cutting year.  This year due to the very difficult conditions in March (2 periods of snow and heavy rain, followed by hot sunny weather shortly after) the cutting did not start until April and then it was much more difficult to cut.  So the cutting programme is around 1.5 – 2 weeks behind schedule.  This results in very long grass in verges and open spaces.  There will, as you have stated, be a lot of arisings left on the grass.  All rather unsatisfactory but this will improve with future cuts. 

As much as I would like to I cannot promise you a maintenance regime similar to Newbury Town Parks, these are cut every week in most cases as they are treated as formal recreation spaces and lawned areas.  What I can assure you of is that the condition of the verges and open spaces in Hungerford will improve as the Contractor is now beginning to catch up now the weather has improved.  Unfortunately the grass is like straw due to the hot weather but it will recover.  We do not cut and collect arisings from the grass maintenance operation and in some places the grass arisings are lying thick on the surface, but I agree it looks unsightly.   The aesthetics will improve as the contractor returns to complete cuts 3 and 4 and so on. 

I did look at Canal Walk Open Space and I think the maintenance here is perfectly acceptable, it appears to be cut at a greater frequency due to the importance of the location.  However the grass, although bone dry, is well trimmed and attention has been made to the strimming.  I cannot therefore find fault with the contractor in this respect. 

Overall I am very unhappy with the current situation but it is largely as result of climatic factors at the start of the cutting year.  It is rare that complaints about grass cutting come across my desk but this has been, as I state, an exceptional year. I am certain however that matters will improve over the summer.  I will pay particular attention to Hungerford in my monitoring of the contract. 

I believe I have now provided a comprehensive review of your complaint in my letter and I hope I have provided a satisfactory response to you.  However, if you are still unhappy with the Council’s response you can ask for it to be reviewed under Stage 2 of the Council’s complaints process.  A leaflet ‘Your right to a review’ can be found here:  

http://info.westberks.gov.uk/index.aspx?articleid=27928 

Alternatively you may write directly to The Complaints Manager, Strategic Support, Council Offices, Market Street, Newbury RG14 5LD, email Complaints@westberks.gov.uk   explaining your reasons for requesting a Stage 2 review. Please write within 30 working days of receipt of this response, in order for your complaint to be reviewed."

Parking Press Release

Planning Permission has been granted for a housing development on the former Oakes Brothers site at Hungerford station. This will mean that the temporary car park will be closed shortly causing the loss of approximately 80 parking spaces. Hungerford Town Council has requested a meeting with West Berkshire Council to discuss potential sites for a new car park. Hungerford Town Council are also looking at the feasibility of introducing a limited Park and Ride scheme.

Please follow this link to see a summary of this issue as written in Penny Post:

http://www.pennypost.org.uk/2018/07/car-parking-hungerford-100-spaces-lost/

Neigbourhood Watch Hungerford

Following a meeting led by Angela Money, Thames Valley Neighbourhood Watch Committee Member representing West Berkshire with Thames Valley Police, Mayor of Hungerford and Richard Benyon MP, local residents were encouraged to create a Neighbourhood Watch team in Hungerford.

The first priority is to find a Co-ordinator.  If you are interested, please fill out the attached form and send it to The Head of Coporate Communications, Thames Valley Police Headquarter - address on the bottom of the attached form

Application Form

Police & Crime Summary

 

A summary version of the Police and Crime Plan of the Thames Valley 2017-2021 has now been published detailing the five strategic priorities for policing and crime for the next five years.  Please see attached document.Summary

Age UK Berkshire - Easy Shop

Easy Shop is a service provided by Age UK Berkshire in association with the leading supermarkets to give you regular and reliable supermarket shopping delivered to your home.  If you find it difficult to get to the shops, can't or don't want to shop on-line: whether you're older or a person with disabilities, Easy Shop is designed for you.  Please follow the attached link to Penny Post for more details about this helpful scheme:   
http://pennypost.org.uk/2017/12/easy-shop-shopping-made-simpler-berkshire-age-uk/
or contact Age UK Berkshire on 0118 959 4242 or 01635 522255, easyshop@ageukberkshire.org.uk, www.ageukberkshire.org.uk.

Responsibilities

Hungerford Town Council works alongside West Berkshire District Council to provide a variety of local services.  Listed below is a summary of the responsibilities and services provided by HTC and WBC.

Hungerford Town Council is responsible for:

The Mayor of Hungerford

Planning (HTC is a statutory consultee on Planning Applications in Hungerford and although the Town Council’s comments will be considered, the final decision lies with West Berkshire Council)

Highways & Transport (HTC's Highways and Transport Committee lobby WBC for changes they see as required through their local knowledge of the town, but ultimately WBC are responsible.  In particular potholes, slips and trips on the footway should be reported directly to them through customerservices@westberks.gov.uk)

Allotments

St Saviour's Cemetery

The Croft Field Centre

Play Areas

Hungerford Youth & Community Centre

Triangle Field

CCTV

Defibrillators

Hungerford Library

Community Events

Bridge Street War Memorial

Public Toilets


West Berkshire District Council is responsible for:
Leisure, Parks and Countryside
For help relating to any of the above, please contact the WBC website on www.westberks.gov.uk


In addition to the above, the Town and Manor of Hungerford is a charity responsible for protecting the Commoners' rights and the lands and rivers of the Town and Manor.  Their areas of responsibility include:
The Town Hall
Local markets and other events
Hungerford Common, The Croft, Freeman's March, the John O'Gaunt Inn
For help relating to any of the above, please contact the Town and Manor website on www.hungerfordtownandmanor.co.uk