Wraysbury Parish Council


Parish Council News June 2008


The Annual Parish Meeting was held in the Village Hall on Thursday 10th April 2008 and was attended by 38 residents. The Chairman gave an update on the position regarding the doctors' surgery and the progress of the new Community Building. He stated that the Datchet medical practice remains committed to finding premises for a surgery in Wraysbury. A number of attempts have been made which have unfortunately proved unsuccessful but currently there are still two possibilities.

 There have been a number of problems related to the construction of the new Community Building and we are more than grateful to the Scout Group, who will be the main users, for their extreme patience and especially for the way they have held their groups together during the delays.

 Four 'Wraysbury' signs similar to the one currently sited at the junction of Welley Road and Windsor Road will be erected at the main entrance points to the village. These sites have been agreed with Highways Officers and will be at the south end of Coppermill Road, Laminas Drive, Sunnymeads Railway Bridge and the slip road from the M25 to the roundabout at Hythe End.

 Much thought has been given to the completion of our Transport Strategy which has developed from previous work and ideas of our former Borough Councillor, Don Gregory. The Plan concentrates on reducing the speed of traffic through Wraysbury and improving and extending cycleways. We have now submitted the plan to the Royal Borough of Windsor & Maidenhead and await their response on funding and timescale.

 

A promotional evening was organised on 14th January 2008 to enable residents to apply for an Advantage Card without the time, trouble and expense of travelling to Windsor. The event was far better attended than we ever envisaged and a further such evening will be considered later this year.

 The Parish Council are purchasing new notice boards to replace most of the existing boards which are life expired. All will be renewed with the exception of that at Gloucester Drive which was the last to be purchased and is still in very good condition. With the permission of the school governors an additional notice board will be placed at the school for the benefit of parents. The new boards will be distinctive as they are royal blue in colour.

 The routing of bus service 60 changed at the end of March and now serves  Heathrow Terminal 5 rather than the former circular route through Horton. Buses now operate about every hour from early morning to late evening every day of the week and thus provide a much improved service through Wraysbury.

 Information has been given by our Borough Councillors that two CCTV cameras will shortly be installed, one in the High Street and one on the Village Green. They will be directly linked to Windsor Police control room. This is particularly good news for the Parish Council and the village in general as during last year repairs to rectify damage caused by vandalism cost the Parish over 5000 and a further 2,500 has been included in this year's budget. The Parish Precept for the next financial year has been set at 53,584 which equates to 25.55 per annum for each band 'D' equivalent property. This means that 15% of Parish funds raised through the annual precept have been spent on repairing damage to properties caused by vandalism.

 

During the past few months we have responded to a number of consultation papers. One of these was the proposed expansion of Heathrow Airport including the possibility of a third runway. We expressed our serious concerns at the increase in noise, the impact on the environment and the quality of the consultation. Whilst appreciating the contribution that Heathrow makes to the local economy, the increased demand for housing will put the Green Belt under pressure. There will be additional demand for public services and this could adversely affect access to these services by existing residents. Whilst not opposed to the growth in air travel we seriously question whether the economic benefits cannot be achieved by expansion at sites other than Heathrow. We felt that the consultation document left much to be desired. It appeared to be somewhat difficult to complete as the precise impact of the proposals seemed to be impossible to determine from the information supplied. The important question missing was whether the respondent was in favour or not of the proposal to add capacity at Heathrow.

 

We also responded to a Green Belt Analysis which is part of the Royal Borough of Windsor & Maidenhead Local Development Framework. We consider the Green Belt to be very important in checking the unrestricted sprawl of built up areas, preventing towns from merging into each other, safeguarding the countryside and preserving the special character of historic towns and villages. We also feel that the Green Belt is especially important to Wraysbury as it helps to absorb flood water.

 We have also submitted our opinions of building in the flood plain. We feel that more and more planning applications are being approved which result in concreting over the flood plain. We question whether enough emphasis is placed on the risk to residents. The Environment Agency appear to object to large scale developments but we feel that the effects of these would be little different to the cumulative effect of bungalows being demolished and replaced by 5-bed properties with the consequent allowable increase in footprint.

 Please remember that the Parish Council normally meets at 7.30 pm on the first and third Mondays of each month. Planning applications are part of the agenda of all these meetings. If there is an application submitted in which you have an interest please watch the notice boards for information on when this will be discussed.

 Roger P. Marlow, Clerk to the Council

 

 

 


June 2008