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Mins of Meeting - 25/01/24

Minutes of Berwick St James Village Meeting
Thursday 25th January 2024 at 19:00hrs

In attendance: Julian Glyn - Owen – Chairman
Bill Hiscocks - Treasurer
Hayley Burrey - Secretary

Total attendees: 37 people

Apologies received and read out: Gail Lovett and Rosie Gairdner gave their apologies.
Summary of agenda discussions, actions and decisions agreed:

1. Welcome & Apologies
Chairman (Julian Glyn- Owen) opened the meeting at 19:00hrs, welcomed all in attendance to the meeting and expressed that he would like to begin on time.

• Julian explained that the meeting would hopefully be fast paced and that we also had some guest speakers who were going to address all.
• Julian announced that Councillor Kevin Daily was present and that matters they had been discussing would be in the agenda content – he also encouraged any questions to be given to Kevin directly at the end of the meeting.
• Huge condolences were offered to the Gatling family, following Mary’s sudden and unexpected death. Thanks were made to all those involved with helping at the time.
• Julian then welcomed new residents Dave and Amanda, Bill and Claire, Ed and Alice and children.
• Julian then welcomed to the meeting Seargent Caroline Ralph and PCSO Will House, which wasn’t on the agenda, however, thrilled to have them provide recent news and updates for us on such a busy night.

2. Wiltshire Police
• PCSO Will House introduced Wiltshire Police Community Commitment and detailed its mission of keeping Wiltshire Safe.
• He covered the problematic issues with Hare coursing and the A303 access, which he is regularly policing to act as a deterrent.
• An update on local burglaries was given.
• More information was provided regarding the Bobby Van and encouraged people to visit it.
• Any concerns or for more information please email directly to [email protected].
• Seargent Caroline Ralph explained that most of these crimes are rare, however, please take care in keeping machinery stored etc.
• Seargent Caroline Ralph then addressed the meeting to cover the Policing Model within the Salisbury/Amesbury area and how they are encouraging online discussions and more face-to-face contact.
• Please advise if we would like support on any community events that we would like a police presence.
• For full information and links to community meetings please visit
• Julian then asked for all to thank both Seargent Caroline Ralph and PCSO Will House, for coming out to us on a busy night and a round of applause was given.

3. Minutes of the Last Meeting and Matters Arising
Chairman (Julian Glyn - Owen) explained that he intended to amalgamate some of the agenda items.
• Julian then read out all of the apologies (See top of page)
• Julian said that the minutes from the last meeting in September have been on the website for a while and asked if all were agreed that they were an accurate reflection of the meeting.
• It was also covered that both Julian and Secretary (Hayley Burrey) would aim to produce the minutes as quickly as possible.
• Neil MacDougall asked a question regarding item number 15 from the last meeting minutes and asked if the costings for the BSJ domain name for the website had been confirmed.
• Julian answered that it had been approximately £150, however, expects it has since changed and we will look at that.
• Julian then asked if all were agreed that the last minutes were an accurate reflection of the meeting.
• Proposed by Bill Hiscocks and Seconded by Shayne Gould. All in favour and no objections.

4. State of Village Finances
Chairman (Julian Glyn - Owen) then asked Treasurer (Bill Hiscocks) to go through the village finances.
• Bill introduced himself then showed a slide of the village accounts (please see meeting slides on village website)
• Bill explained how the accounts work including the setting of the precept.
• Reference was made to the Bob Drakes fund, which amounted to approximately £1000 and the spend on 2000 natural Daffodils, which have now been planted by Bill and Bob Drake in the churchyard, Olivia Marchants’ bank and Kate Woods’ area by the Oak tree (with thanks to Olivia and Kate)
• Some also were planted in the triangle next to the bench.
• Anne Clarke has agreed for us to plant a Cherry Tree on her bank opposite the pub and an order has been placed.
• Bill then went through the rest of the community fund (please see meeting slides on village website)
• Bill then explained that we now needed to vote on the new precept, which we have had set at £2000 and proposed we retain it there.
• Proposed by Ian Gibb and Seconded by Nicky Street. All in favour and no objections.
• Chairman (Julian Glyn - Owen) paid thanks to Bill.

5. Berwick Road (B3083) Footpath
Chairman (Julian Glyn - Owen) showed a slide on the Berwick Road footpath (slides available on web site) to provide a brief update and highlighted areas on the slide.
• We have written to John Elliot (Druids Estate Manager) and are awaiting to hear back when Julian sees John Elliot in March.
• The aim is to receive approval from Druids in writing so we can proceed.
• Julian asked if there were any questions.
• Treasurer (Bill Hiscocks) asked if there would be a cost to the village to implement the footpath.
• Julian replied that it could be circa £1k to £2k, although still a grey area to be defined and we should plan for an outgoing cost.
• Neil MacDougall stated that we have an opportunity to apply for match funding – to which Julian concurred and said that we are already on the list.
• Henry Colthurst then asked if we could consider writing to H&S in support of John Elliot with reference to the erected fencing, which would be important towards our relationship (and requesting the footpath be moved). The case put forward was by doing nothing we are
allowing the fencing across the meadows to become a precedent to allow for further fencing.
• Julian explained that we had covered this debate in depth at the last meeting (see minutes on village website) and suggested we take a vote.
• A vote was taken with 19 in favour and I against and the rest abstaining for writing to the H&S providing that John Elliot is happy for us to do this – post the meeting scheduled with Julian and John in March.
• Julian concluded that this is part of the discussion with John Elliot in March and if anybody would like to attend, they are welcome.

6. Bob Drake’s Legacy Update
Chairman (Julian Glyn - Owen) explained that we had already covered this in the meeting with the daffodils and the cherry tree and suggested we move on to the next item on the agenda.

7. Church Update
Chairman (Julian Glyn - Owen) invited Treasurer (Bill Hiscocks) whom is also the Church Warden to update the meeting on the Church.
• Bill said there was good news is that the Church Insurers and Church Architect, regarding the reduction of the size of the Beech tree and that should now go ahead.
• We also have approval for the go ahead of the community garden – placing benches and planting trees.
• Julian then referred to the Church Garden, which he said is looking pretty good and is going
to be great in the coming spring/summer months. He asked Anika Lange to add her comments.
• Anika said that it would be good to arrange another working party to attend the flower area and join forces again for the was on nettles.
• Julian asked when we would look to do this and Anika confirmed April would be a good time.
• Opening the floor for further questions – Gill Brashier asked when the grave that was damaged by the fallen tree will be repaired and how much it will cost.
• Bill Hiscocks explained that it made sense to have the tree attended to first, in case of further accidental damage.
• Neil MacDougall asked if this would come under the Church Insurance, to which Bill explained that it is not clear and unlikely to cover the grave.
• Keth Lovett commented that if the tree were to fall on his property, that it would be complicated to which Bill confirmed that damage to his house would be covered.

8. Speed Watch + Village Website.
Chairman (Julian Glyn - Owen) then moved on to the next agenda item, explaining that he had combined Speed Watch and the Village website together, as Neil MacDougall was covering them both.
• Neil MacDougall then gave a brief presentation with several slides on both Speed Watch and the Website. (please see meeting slides on village website)
• As Marie Perry has now moved, Neil MacDougall is now looking after Speed Watch and provided the latest statistics and updates on the slides.
• At the moment we only have half a dozen volunteers and a request was made for more people to come forward and offer their time – even if only for one or two sessions a month for 30mins each time.
• Chairman (Julian Glyn - Owen) thanked Neil and asked if there were any questions. There were not – so Julian invited Neil to continue with the presentation on the website.
• Neil MacDougall then gave another brief presentation on the village website and explained the content in detail and how valuable it is. (Please see all slides on the website)
• Olivia Marchant commented that there is also a huge amount of valuable archive available on the website.
• Neil commented further that it includes historical information provided by Nicky Street.
• Chairman (Julian Glyn - Owen) thanked Neil and asked if there was any questions or volunteers for Speed Watch. There were no questions and Neil commented that volunteers would probably wish to contact him privately.

9. Flooding & Consequences
Chairman (Julian Glyn - Owen) moved on to the next agenda item and presented a slide which covered, Roads and footpaths, Asserton Lane /Duck St, Sewage treatment and the Backing up of sewage from treatment plant into southern end of Berwick. (Please see all slides on the website, including relevant photos)
• Julian explained that this combines the challenges that we have within the village.
• Reference was made to the very heavy rains and the expected opening of the springs, which impacts on the sewage.
• Wessex Water are aware of this and do attend with a huge extraction tanker to hoover it up and take it to Churchfields.
• Wessex Water are planning an inspection for their Scope of Works for March this year.
• Christian Lange commented that this occurs every year now and they have to pump it all out.
• Treasurer (Bill Hiscocks) asked if they are pumping into the river and what we need to address what we can do as a village to increase capacity.
• Julian said he was more than happy to take ownership of pressing the point to them.
• James Hardy explained that the sewage system was built 80 years ago and was not equipped for the number of houses we now have.
• James explained that WW are responsible for the integrity of the system, which they have addressed 2 years ago.
• Julian expressed that he is happy to take it as an action to get the report from WW.
• The developing puddles in Asserton Lane/Duck Street were then addressed, with the nuance that neither the Council nor Druids will  accept responsibility.
• A discussion then took place to find a solution to this issue.
• Alex Howson has agreed to take scalping’s and distribute them.
• Neil MacDougall commented that he faced the same challenge when he was chair and asked if we have talked to Peter Day, who had managed to resurface the track previously.
• Julian agreed to speak with Peter Day.
• A further discussion took place as the villagers deliberated over the history of the track and its’ grey area over attributed responsibility.
• Julian concluded that he would take this to his meeting with John Elliot in March.

10. The Boot Inn
Chairman (Julian Glyn - Owen) moved on to the next agenda item, which he stated was a very happy and positive one of The Boot Inn.
• Julian invited Ross (Landlord) to present an update.
• Ross gave a brief and eloquent presentation, with several slides, covering the refurbishment, menu, opening times, stretch tent, fire pit, wine club, meat raffle and pop-up events with some famous chefs. (all slides available on the village website)
• Ross explained they are hoping to work very closely with the campsite and will be using the village website for their additional marketing.
• There were questions raised and Ross happily answered all to the satisfaction of the village.
• Julian made thanks to Ross and a round of applause was given.

11. Village Questionnaire 2024
Chairman (Julian Glyn - Owen) commented that we were making very good progress and moved onto the next agenda item.
• Julian presented an overview of the village questionnaire/survey and thanked everybody who had completed it thus far, either digitally or on paper printouts.
• There was a total of 8 slides covering all the content and statistics/ screengrabs (all slides available on the village website)
• Julian said that he would welcome a small group of people, willing to assist in reviewing the data and put together some concrete actions.
• Mary Cochrane mentioned the questionnaire for the REDS – covering frequency of the buses and how valuable it is.
• Julian said that he would get in contact with the REDS to reissue the questionnaire for us all.
• A quick run through of the stats were provided and Julian thanked all for their input.

12. Fundraising Events for 2024/25
Chairman (Julian Glyn - Owen) moved on to discuss the next agenda item with suggested Fundraising events for 2024/25.
• These included, Church Garden Event, Car Boot Sale, Food and Wine Tasting, Quiz Night, Sports Day, Treasure Hunt, Barn Dance, BBQ and Film Night.
• Having reviewed the results of the village questionnaire – it would seem there is a desire to have a fundraising event this year.
• The most popular choice seems to indicate that we hold an event in the Church Garden.
• This would be with possibly a picnic with an auction.
• Julian has asked for volunteers.
• Ian Gibb suggested that we could maybe run an event in the Pub Garden with Ross.
• Neil MacDougall suggested we approach Ross to have a Quiz Night to raise money for the village.
• Julian agreed that he would take speaking to Ross as an action.
• At this point Julian mentioned that we do need to reapply for the Boot to remain a Community Asset.
• Treasurer (Bill Hiscocks) covered that Secretary (Hayley Burrey) had created a form for everybody willing to complete and sign, which was made available at the end of the meeting.

13. Wildlife and Roads
Chairman (Julian Glyn - Owen) stated that we had one final agenda point, which had been raised by Christine McConnell and highlight it. asked Christine to speak;
• Christine requested that we purchase two x reflective signs for the village for the roads to protect hedgehogs and other wildlife to address speed.
• Christine said that the children of the village are very engaged in the idea.
• The cost will be approximately £90.
• Ian Gibb suggested that we attach them to the signs we already have, rather than erect new posts.
• A discussion was had and all agreed with Ians’ suggestion.
• Julian asked for a quick show of hands for those willing to support the idea and the spend of £90 and there were 18 in favour.

14. Any other business
Chairman (Julian Glyn-Owen) then asked if there was AOB from anyone.
• Neil MacDougall asked to have 60 seconds to talk about Mary Gatling.
• A lovely tribute was given in recognition of all Mary had the significant effect she had on the village, including implementing the defibrillator and preserving the village Phone box as a feature.
• Mary Cochrane commented on the multiple signs on the A303 end of the village and queried whether we could reduce them to 2 only.
• Julian said that he would look into this as an action.

15. Conclusion
Chairman (Julian Glyn-Owen) then thanked everybody and announced the end of the meeting, which closed at 20:30 hrs and then drinks were served.