Hungerford Town Council

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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.

Events for week beginning 16th July 2018

Tuesday 17th July 7.00pm Recreation Amenities & War Memorials Committee meeting in the Library.

Agenda
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Library Handover

We are delighted to announce the formal handover of the Library from WBC took place on Friday 15th June.  Please see more information on our News & Events page.

Hungerford Neighbourhood Plan

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Shaping our future

What will Hungerford be like in 18 years - Have you Had Your Say

We have received a good response to our first questionnaire to gather your views for the development of the Neighbourhood Plan.

But there are still two weeks to go so if you have not sent in a questionnaire, complete it on-line at http://www.hungerford2036.info/ or collect an extra copy from the Hungerford Library.

This is our first consultation exercise and we will be giving you feedback and holding a series of workshops throughout the Autumn.

The whole point of a Neighbourhood Plan is that it is community-led and that means researched, written and voted on by the people who live in the neighbourhood – that’s you and your neighbours! At present we are also seeking the views of people who visit and work in Hungerford.

It will, at the end of the process, have significant influence on the way Hungerford changes once the plan has been sanctioned by a town referendum.

Don’t leave it to someone else, make sure your view is heard.

  

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."

Hungerford Town Council Privacy Statement

Closure of Barclays Bank in Hungerford

Barclays Bank in Hungerford will be closing on 7th September 2018.  The Town Clerk and RFO recently met with a representative from the Bank who has given the following advice:
(Please note this advice has been given to HTC by Barclays Bank and HTC is not responsible for the actions of Barclays Bank.  Any queries should be directed to Barclays Bank).

Private Customers:  

Barclays is personally contacting customers that it knows are dependent on the Barclays Hungerford Branch and will be having one to one meetings with them. Voice recognition will be used to help with telephone banking to negate the need to remember passwords.

Sessions will take place in the Three Swans on the following dates:

Tuesday 3rd July 9.30-11am

Tuesday 10th July 9.30-11am

Tuesday 17th July 9.30-11am

Tuesday 24th July 9.30-11am

Tuesday 31st July 9.30-11am

Tuesday 4th September 9.30-11am

Tuesday 11th September 9.30-11am

These will be one-to-one 'tea and teach' sessions focusing in particular on on-line and mobile banking and need to be pre-booked by visiting the Hungerford Branch.  The demand will determine the amount of meetings they hold. In addition advisers are available at nearby branches such as Newbury and Marlborough for face to face meetings by appointment.

Using the Post Office: 

We are advised the Post Office in Hungerford will be able to deal with all the banking services. The Post Office will stock Barclays paying in slips and envelopes. Card transactions will process as they would in a branch but by envelope will take an extra 2 days. An additional facility will be set up for dealing with cashing cheques where 2 signatories are required.  Customers will be made aware of the peak times of use of the post office so they can choose to bank when it is quieter. The post office is open more often than Barclays was and banking will be available 7 days a week. 

Business Customers:  

There are two business managers which cover the Hungerford area.  G4S can collect cash for free for businesses with amounts over £5,000. Barclays will be meeting with the larger businesses in town and will have sessions in the 3 Swans for businesses too. Face to face meetings can be arranged with the business manager on request. 

The Building:  

Barclays lease the building so could not advise on future use. The branch ATM will go but there are other machines in the town which take Barclays' cards.

 

Salisbury Road - Update

Back in April the outline planning for a housing development at Salisbury Road was passed by West Berks Council. Strong public feeling against this was expressed at Town Council meetings. Alternative options had been suggested by the Town Council that had less impact on the Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. The Town Council felt compelled to act. 

A call in to the Secretary of State about the application resulted in a delay to the period to challenge the application. Meanwhile WBC obtained official approval of their Development Plan Document, containing many of the issues that apply to the Salisbury Road site and HTC responded by challenging this as to not do so would have seriously compromised any case against Salisbury Road.

Having raised money through crowd funding and by contributing themselves, HTC got as far as the permission stage of a Judicial Review but then the case was dismissed by the judge as not strong enough.

The only possibility left was to challenge the planning application decision. However, after considerable thought the Town Council decided it couldn’t afford to go down the Judicial Review process again. Professional advice obtained also advised against this. The failure of the JR against the DPD would harm a challenge against the planning application and our chances of success were much lower than before. We would be up against an adopted DPD and the support of the town was waning.

On Tuesday 6th February we will meet with the developer Cala to hear about their plans. Entering dialogue may be our only chance to influence the design and layout etc. of the housing at Salisbury Road. 

Notice of Public Rights and Publication of Unaudited Annual Governance & Accountability Return for year ended 31 March 2018

Vacancy for a Councillor

Due to the resignation of a Councillor, we currently have a vacancy on the Town Council.  If you would be interested in applying for this role, please contact the Town Clerk on townclerk@hungerford-tc.gov.uk

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.

Hungerford Town Council's Response to Phase 2 of Budget Cuts

Hungerford Town Council agreed their response to West Berkshire Council's Phase 2 of budget proposals at a meeting held on Monday 29th February 2016.  The formal response was submitted to West Berkshire Council on Tuesday 1st March 2016 and can be viewed by clicking on the PDF.

HTC Response to WBC phase 2 Budget Proposals

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

Bridge Street War Memorial

Hungerford Library

Community Events

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