We believe that we are lucky to live where we are, somewhat isolated from the large crowds that threaten to create the ‘second wave’ of Covid epidemic. Complacency, however, is not good and we must continue to embrace the requirements necessary for our health and wellbeing. Masks are still available in the village shop if you need them.
There has been a spate of fly tipping in the area with a lorry load of tyres being left close by the A419 roundabout and a burnt out car left at the Arnhem Memorial access. Also, unfortunately, there is evidence that drug taking is happening in the area. Please do keep a watchful eye open when out walking and report anything suspicious should you come across something untoward.
Recent Overflying by B52s
A complaint has been made to RAF Fairford concerning the recent overflying of the village by aircraft on exercise from the base. Whilst the base commander was sympathetic to concerns it was pointed out that the base was fully operational and as such aircraft could make low and close passes over the village. This was not a routine matter but could and would happen on occasions.
Comment was also made about the lingering smell of Avgas fuel that enfolded the village but, again, this was considered non-harmful and a result of atmospheric conditions.
Broadway Farm Update
Sanctuary have stated that they are still trying to satisfy GCC Highways on drainage issues before they can start the process of developing the site.
The parish council have been assured that the hedges will be cut and the site kept tidy.
There has not been a ‘start date’ given yet when we can expect works to commence.
Meeting with CDC
Cllrs Tappern and Jenkins met with the Lead of CDC Cllr Harris, Cllr Spivey and Clive Webster to try to progress planning issues related to major developments and other matters.
It was felt that little progress had been made regarding pre-planning application discussions with CDC planners as well as dealing with minor amendments and planning enforcement. It was acknowledged that much of what we would like to see is governed by planning law.
The new planning law proposals put forward by the Government will be seen as not helpful to us in trying to seek beneficial development when it threatens.
It is understood that we need to compromise on new housing developments, but the size, nature and quality, must be considered if we are not to lose our village identity and environmental integrity. After vigorous lobbying we await the outcome of the White Paper to see what impact this will have on our community.
Cycle Racing Through Down Ampney
This matter is causing annoyance to a number of residents, particularly those living on the main DA road, has been taken up with our local MP and the police Inspector for the neighbourhood community. It is disappointing to state that little or no interest by either party has been shown as, apparently, cyclists have ‘rights’ to carry out such races subject to then acting within the highway Code.
Speed Restriction and Pedestrian Crossing located at the School
This matter was taken up with GCC Highways and, following a review, we are advised that “as no accidents have taken place on the main DA road and that a speed survey demonstrated that traffic is generally adhering to the speed limit within the village there is NO intention to consider or fund either a 20 MPH speed restriction or installation of a pedestrian crossing”.
MUGA and Play Area
Recently, Cllr Higson called for volunteers to assist in forming a committee to oversee both the MUGA and play area ensuring that it was kept clean and tidy and, potentially, raising funds for more play items.
It is disappointing that only one person stepped up and being elderly did not truly represent the demographic of residents whose children use the area.
Whilst there are a few generous younger parents working hard in the village, most of the work and background organisation is undertaken by an older generation whilst the younger set expect work to be done for them.
The time has come to recognise that voluntary work undertaken by the older generation (most over 60) cannot continue in its present form and that essential repairs (often vandalism by young children) has to be contracted out to professional companies. This will mean that our general running cost will increase.
Unless a younger generation of parents step up to become involved in the village affairs unfortunately this will be the case.
VACANCY AT PARISH COUNCIL
It is with great sadness that we received resignation papers from Cllr. Karen Dangerfield.
Karen has been a staunch member of the council responsible for footpaths and being the representative on the village hall committee. Her enthusiasm for getting things done and clear thinking will be greatly missed when Karen leaves in the New Year.
We wish her well for the future and thank her for all the work that she has carried out in on the village’s behalf.
This, then, leaves a vacancy for a parish Councillor to take Karen’s place. If you are interested in taking part in village affairs and believe that you can fulfil this role kindly do get in touch with the Clerk, Mrs Gail Dillon or the Chairman.