Highlights in the Dever News
New Parish Councillor
- At its September monthly meeting, Mr
Nick Thuilliez was co-opted on to the Council, having previously
served on South Wonston Parish Council. We are delighted to welcome
him and this now means that the Council has representation from
Sutton Scotney, Wonston, Hunton, Cranbourne and Stoke Charity.
Proposed Wind Farm - By the time this article
is published, the exhibition and Q&A session will have taken place
on 29th September. The aim was to give parishioners an
opportunity (which many missed first time round) to view EDF
Energy’s proposals and to question EDF managers about the proposal.
It is stressed that Wonston Parish Council will not determine its
position until after it has studied the Environmental Impact
Assessment, once it has been published.
- Hampshire County Council (HCC), like other Councils across the
country, is in the process of preparing a Local Flood Risk
Management Strategy. The focus of this strategy is on local
flooding from surface water, groundwater, streams and ditches.
HCC would like as many individuals as
possible within the community, to help by commenting on the draft
version of the Local Flood Risk Management Strategy. HCC would like
to know whether people think they are taking the right approach to
understanding flood risk. Comments are required on the way HCC
propose to prioritise the actions that need to be taken to reduce
the existing risk and prevent it from getting worse in the future.
From Monday 24
September a draft version of the Local Flood Risk Management
Strategy will be available online at
consultation document will provide an overview of the Strategy and
an online feedback form will allow you to make comments.
Hampshire Police Website
for up-to-date information on crime and incidents in your local
The newly launched Crime Reports site
is a new crime mapping facility only available to residents across
Hampshire and the Isle of Wight which shows you exactly what has
been happening in and around where you live.
This new facility also gives you the
opportunity to see how crime, incidents and anti-social behaviour is
being dealt with and to have your say on the important issues
affecting you and your neighbours.
Contact : Sue Hedges, Parish Clark
Tel: 01962 761937
Wind Farm at Bullington Cross
- This topic continues to attract a great deal of attention. As
reported in last month’s magazine, having asked for a further
exhibition and presentation by EDF to be held in the Victoria Hall,
Sutton Scotney either on 22nd or 29th
September, we are awaiting a reply. The date will be promulgated on
the Council’s website and on noticeboards.
- There is a very
good website – www3.hants.gov.uk/roadproblems – where you can report
potholes, uneven pavements, fallen trees etc. Please do make good
use of it! Meanwhile, progress is being made on some longstanding
highways issues such as localised flooding in a number of locations
throughout the Parish.
Parish Plan -
A number of
volunteers have come forward, for which the Council is very
grateful, but we still need a few more before being able to commence
work. Please contact the parish Clerk, Mrs Sue Hedges, at
Wind Farm at Bullington Cross.
Many of you will be aware
of the proposed wind farm approximately one mile to the north east
of Bullington Cross. At its previous meeting, the Council made
formal comments to Winchester City Council about the Scoping Study
and then, on July 4th, four Councillors visited EDF
Energy’s exhibition at Whitchurch to view the proposals. Because of
the short notice given about the exhibition which was open to any
member of the public, together with what appears to have been
incomplete distribution of leaflets advertising the event, the
Council has requested a further exhibition and presentation by EDF
to be held hopefully on the evening of either 22nd or 29th
September. We will update you once the event has been agreed, but
please keep an eye on the Council’s website for further information.
Following the launch of the Parish Plan in May, we are pleased
that a number of volunteers have come forward to help formulate the
plan. However, we still need more and, in particular, are looking
for someone to head up the group, so please don’t hesitate to step
forward! Names should be given to the Parish Clerk, Mrs Sue Hedges,
In the past, this has been produced approximately every five
years. However, it is recognised that, almost as soon as it is
produced, it starts to become out of date. Additionally, because the
Council now produces a monthly article for the West Dever News and
comprehensive information is available on the Council’s website, it
has been decided to discontinue the pamphlet (which will also mean a
small reduction in expenditure).
Contact : Sue Hedges, Parish Clark
Tel: 01962 761937
First, good news
on the planning front. Two members of
the Parish Council attended Winchester City Council’s formal
Planning Committee Meeting on April 26th, at which the development
at Old Station Yard, Sutton Scotney, was considered. Following a
detailed discussion, there was a unanimous vote in favour, which is
a very welcome decision, and the Parish Council is grateful to
Councillors Barry Lipscomb and Stephen Godfrey for their well chosen
words of support to the Planning Committee.
At their monthly meeting the following
week, the Parish Council studied the proposed revised development at
Taylor’s Yard, also in Sutton Scotney, and forwarded a number of
comments to the City Council, together with requiring the
development plan to go before the full Planning Committee.
The Council is pleased to report that
the play areas at Pigeonhouse Field and Stoke Charity have completed
a regeneration of some of the worn out equipment and improved the
surface matting. The Council were successful in obtaining most of
the funding from LEADER and RDPE funding. The Rural Development
Programme for England (RDPE) is funded by Defra and the EU. The
European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD): Europe
investing in rural areas. Additionally, a grant was received from
Hampshire Playing Fields and donations were kindly received from
local groups and businesses in Sutton Scotney including Egg Day
Nursery, Muddy Boots Landscaping and Wilds Sports.
For some while, the Parish Council has
been going through the very protracted process of getting
authorisation for an eighth Councillor, in order to try and keep the
workload of the Council members at a reasonable level. Progress is
still being made but, meanwhile, Phillip Davey has had to resign due
to work commitments, which is a sad loss and the Council is very
grateful for his valuable contributions to the Parish. So, if anyone
out there would like to come and join our merry group, please
contact Sue Hedges, the Parish Clerk, details below.
Finally, the AGM was held on
completion of the monthly Council Meeting, at which the Chairman and
Vice Chairman were re-elected. There were no particular items of
significance to report in the magazine.
Contact : Sue Hedges, Parish Clark
Tel: 01962 761937
The Parish Plan
Increasingly, Parishes across the
country are formulating Parish Plans and Wonston Parish Council
has now decided that the time has come for our Parish to develop
its own plan.
So, what is a Parish Plan? At
present, the Council with its seven Councillors tries to
represent to the best of its ability the interests of the local
community. However, the aim of a Parish Plan is to give you the
Parishioners a real say in how the Parish operates, including
what is, or is not, important to you, for example bus services,
recreational facilities or road traffic.
Getting the Parish Plan started.
The first stage will take place during the Annual Parish
Assembly to be held on Wednesday 16th May 2012. Mr
Steve Lincoln, the Community Planning Manager for Winchester
City Council, is the expert on Parish Plans and he will give a
presentation, followed by audience participation, when you will
be asked to write down your views on, for example, what you like
about your village or, if you could make on change, what would
it be? This should be a fun exercise and, hopefully, will
attract your interest in the future direction of the Parish.
The next stage is the formation of
a volunteer Steering Group which will probably have one or two
Councillors on it, plus volunteer working Groups who will gather
detailed information on all sorts of topics. This will lead on
to a lengthy Consultation period and the Parish Plan will then
be put together and finally published!
This is very much YOUR Parish
Plan, so perhaps now is the time to start thinking about whether
you would like to become involved in its development. But please
do come to the Annual Parish Assembly anyway.
The Council is working closely with Hampshire County Council on
a number of highway issues including drainage of water off
roads, potholes, ditches and road signs. Progress is being made
but the Council will maintain pressure to ensure that defects
are rectified as soon as possible.
The Council has been told that, hopefully, faster speeds are on
their way now that Hampshire County Council has secured £5m to
upgrade broadband speeds. The project will start in January next
year and last for three years. Please sign up on
Southern Central Ambulance Service.
To become a member of the Trust, please sign up on-line -
Precept and 2012/13 Budget
Council’s recent monthly meeting, the principal agenda item was
discussion and agreement on the precept and budget from April
2012 to April 2013. For those who are not familiar with the term
‘precept’, it is simply the amount from the Community Charge
which comes to Wonston Parish Council and is then divided up
into individuals’ Council Tax bills. So, if you look at your
bill, you will see that it is broken down into the following
elements: Hampshire County Council, Winchester City Council,
Wonston Parish Council, Hampshire Fire and Rescue Authority, and
Hampshire Police Authority.
discussed the precept in great detail. Many of you will be aware
that it has remained static over the past three years which, of
course, is very welcome, but this has had consequential effects.
For example, one of the biggest items of expenditure is
playground equipment and quite a lot of it is now in need of
repair or replacement. So, unless the Council has the necessary
funds (increasingly grants given have to be matched by Councils
in some way), no action can be taken. Additionally, the Council
is now providing more assistance to the Gratton Trust (having
already made a decision to purchase the Gratton playing fields),
to help ensure that the recreational facilities remain in a
has therefore tried to find a balance between the ‘do nothing’
option i.e. maintain the precept at the same level as before,
which will result in deterioration in services and equipment,
and the option of modestly increasing the precept in order to
provide adequate services and facilities for the benefit of
parishioners. The outcome of the discussion (which the public
was welcome to attend) was a unanimous decision to increase the
precept by approximately £15 for a Band D property, equating to
just over £1 per month, which we hope is seen to be fair and
reasonable. The Council’s aim is always not to spend any more
than is absolutely necessary and, in fact, a number of
Councillors spend time cutting back vegetation, repairing
equipment and generally fixing things in order to avoid having
to employ contractors to do the work. We are also very aware of
other volunteering which takes place round the Parish, such as
the team of litter pickers which does a great job during the
year. Many thanks to you all!
Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Celebrations
- These celebrations are taking place over the long weekend of 2nd
to 4th June. The Gratton Trust is looking to set up a
Working Group to help stage events so, if you are interested in
joining the group, please go to
and give your details using the quick comments box.
Contact : Wonston Parish
Tel: 01962 761937
As many of you will be aware, Lord Rank who
owned the land we know as the Gratton, set up the Rank
Foundation which owns the freehold, and the Gratton Trust (a
charity run by volunteers) who currently leases it from the
Foundation. Recently however, the Foundation decided to sell
the freehold at a price of £6188. Although the Gratton Trust
initially explored the purchase, it is not financially well off
and, indeed, the Council is already providing some support for
running costs. So the issue was discussed at length by the
Council and, because it sees the Gratton as a vital facility for
the community in and around Sutton Scotney (66% of parishioners
live in Sutton Scotney), the Council has decided to purchase the
Gratton, subject to satisfactory examination of terms and
conditions, in order to keep the land in perpetuity for the
benefit of the community. Were the freehold to be sold to
another party, then they would be free to charge whatever ground
rent they wished at the end of the present lease which expires
in 17 years’ time. Transfer of the leasehold will not affect the
Gratton Trust because the lease will simply be passed from the
Rank Foundation to the Parish Council.
Councillors do hope that there will be lots
of support by the community for events held by the Gratton Trust
in the future, not least so that the facilities on the Gratton
can be improved and expanded.
Scrap Metal Sales Petition.
Across the country, a huge amount of metal is being stolen from
places such as churches and the railway and then sold on. The
aim of the petition is for the selling of scrap metal to be
licensed. Please see the website for more details.
Salt Bins. As
you may have noticed, salt bins have been widely distributed
around the parish. However, no guidance has been given as to how
much salt should be used, but this should be one tablespoon per
square metre of ground. Don’t worry if you can’t remember this
formula, because it is intended to write the guidance on the
inside of each bin.