Well, quite a lot, is the answer to that question! Having been in the Chairman’s seat for six months now, I thought I should update everybody on what’s happened in that time and show that we are being really proactive in our pursuit of a better village.
First, we have expanded our council members to support a two-year plan I proposed in late summer, which is centred around three key themes: Community, Environment and Traffic, all of which support the Freshford and Limpley Stoke Neighbourhood Plan (2014-
Our new membership includes Georgina Taylor (Events); Denise Barnes (Environment) and Ian Barnes (Roads). They join the existing team of Francis Firmstone (Vice-Chairman and Planning), Alan MacDougall (Pathways and Bridleways), Ed Elias (Local Business and Tourism), Nicky Boulton (Freshford Liaison), and our excellent Parish Clerk, Bryony Kohn.
In addition, we have met with our fellow councillors in Freshford and Winsley to ensure we act both coherently and as a joint force on bigger area issues.
To support our Traffic theme, I proposed a new approach to traffic in October and, alongside [Wiltshire Councillor] Johnny Kidney and Francis Firmstone, had meetings with [local MP] Michelle Donelan, Wiltshire Council and Highways England to garner support. Our plans include:
• significantly reducing through-traffic on Woods Hill, which sees over 700 vehicles a day going up and down the hill, often far too quickly;
• coupling that with no parking on lower Woods Hill, and prioritisation and calming of traffic along Lower Stoke by the old station, will allow us to create a village centre in front of the Hop Pole;
• establishing village entrance signs: at Midford Lane from Midford; on the A36 at Midford Lane; at the Lower Stoke viaduct, and on the A36 before Woods Hill from Bath;
• implementing better traffic calming along Midford Lane, Middle Stoke and Crowe Hill/Crowe Lane;
• improving A36 crossings
from Upper to Middle Stoke;
• proposing that Highways England support a 30mph A36 ‘village’ speed limit from Midford Lane to Brassknocker traffic lights and support our request to improve the time allowed to turn right to Winsley.
HOP POLE. Sadly, it appears that Joe Abbott is no longer taking on the pub. It remains a listed Asset of Community Value (ACV) until 2023 but, without a viable landlord proposition, is likely to remain empty. So, action is needed and, if no solution is forthcoming from The Wellington Pub Company early in 2020, we will consider more concrete options to secure the pub’s usage for our village.
“We are being really proactive in our pursuit of a better village”
In our Community and Environment themes we have lots of exciting initiatives and information coming in 2020. As we go forward with real positivity, I want to thank a few people. First, my wife Jo for running the LSPC website and taking a role on the Village Hall Management Committee. And, of course, the Parish Council team who, as volunteers, all strive to make Limpley Stoke a better place to live.
Please take the time to read our Minutes and Actions List (https://limpleystoke.org/parish- council) as we try to be as informative as possible. Do say hello if you see me out and about and feel free to contact me, or any PC member, via our details on the website link above. More news next month.
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to everyone!
Anthony Gennard, Chairman, Limpley Stoke Parish Council