News

Holybrook Community Spirit Awards 2024

Holybrook Community Spirit Awards 2024

Published: 20 Feb 24

Holybrook residents, have you made your nominations yet for the Community Spirit awards for 2024? The closing date for nominations is Friday, 1st March and winners will be announced at the Annual Assembly on Monday, 25th March. It's an opportunity for local residents to highlight the contributions made by people in Holybrook and for these to be formally recognised. All award winners will receive a £50 voucher and a trophy. Read More...

West Berkshire Council Takes Significant Steps to Conserve Biodiversity

Published: 12 Feb 24

West Berkshire Council is proactively gearing up for the implementation of crucial legislation aimed at conserving and enhancing biodiversity across the district. Scheduled to commence on 12 February, the Mandatory Biodiversity Net Gain (BNG) legislation will come into force for major planning applications to ensure the natural environment and habitat for wildlife is in a better state than it was before the development. BNG will be applicable to minor sites starting from April 2024, and is anticipated to expand to Nationally Significant Infrastructure Projects by November 2025, some exemptions apply. As the local planning authority, the planning process will play a fundamental role in the delivery of BNG. This would require developers to provide a minimum of 10% biodiversity gain, with the BNG habitat needing to be secured for at least 30 years via planning conditions and obligations. Like most countries across the world, the UK is facing a substantial loss of biodiversity, and is now amongst one of the most nature-depleted nations globally according to the State of Nature 2023 report. Read More...

Community Litter Pick Event: Saturday, 2nd March 2024

Community Litter Pick Event: Saturday, 2nd March 2024

Published: 30 Jan 24

Please join us for our next Community Litter Pick on Saturday 2nd March, meeting at Kennet Valley Free Church on Fords Farm, Carters Rise at 10am. All equipment will be provided, as well as refreshments for all participants from midday. Do your bit to help keep Holybrook looking beautiful and litter free. Read More...

Sovereign Network Group Lunchtime Briefing Session: Wednesday, 7th February

Sovereign Network Group Lunchtime Briefing Session: Wednesday, 7th February

Published: 25 Jan 24

There will be a short lunchtime briefing session from Darryl MacAndrew who is the Community Investment and Partnership Lead for Sovereign Network Group. He will be delivering a presentation on Wednesday 7th February at 1pm to talk about his role and his focus on proactively developing relationships with community organisations with the aim of delivering services and activities which will benefit Sovereign Network Group’s tenants and the wider community. He will also talk about sources of funding which are currently available. If you wish to join this briefing, please email Rhys Lewis in the BCT Team: rhys.lewis@westberks.gov.uk and he can send you the required MS Teams link. Read More...

Footpath Closure from Hawkesbury Drive to Mackay Close

Published: 23 Jan 24

The footpath from Hawkesbury Drive to Mackay Close in Calcot will be closed from the 7th February to 25th March 2024. The diversion route is expected to be via - Mackay Close, Carters Rise, Hawkesbury Drive, and vice versa. Residential access will be maintained throughout and the diversion will be signed on site. The purpose of this closure is for Thames Water to carry out Mains renewals and disconnection/abandonment of some existing pipework. Please Note: Blue light access will be available throughout. All enquiries should be directed to: Morrison Water Services on 08003 169 800. A plan of the closure can be found at: https://one.network/?tm=GB137260193 Read More...

Community Litter Pick Event: Saturday, 20th January 2024

Community Litter Pick Event: Saturday, 20th January 2024

Published: 16 Jan 24

Why not start off the New Year by joining in a Community Litter Pick on Saturday 20th January, meeting at the Beansheaf Centre on Charrington Road at 10am. All equipment will be provided, as well as refreshments for all participants from midday. Do your bit to help keep Holybrook looking beautiful and litter free. Read More...

Veganuary - Recipe

Veganuary - Recipe

Published: 9 Jan 24

Veganuary Lemon Drizzle Cake recipe kindly provided by The Hind's Head, Aldermaston. Read More...

Consultation on West Berkshire Council's spending proposals for 2024/25

Published: 28 Nov 23

West Berkshire Council has begun a consultation on spending proposals affecting some frontline services as it prepares to set its budget for 2024/25. Next year the Council will have around £176m to spend delivering services across the district – creating a £14m gap between expected funding and the forecast spending requirements next year. Whilst every effort has been made to protect frontline services, a small number could be impacted by the proposals being considered for next year. Consultation on these budget proposals has begun, with residents invited to have their say by Thursday 11 January, 2024. Information about each of the proposals can be found at www.westberks.gov.uk/balancing-our-budget but in summary are: • Restructure car parking fees - generating up to £450,000 • Close or find an alternative provider to run Willows Edge Care Home - a saving of up to £240,000 • Reduce the frequency of grass cutting - saving up to £220,000 • Restructure funding for Adult Social Care transport services - generating between £100,000 and £400,000 • Reduce funding for gully emptying and bridge maintenance - saving up to £110,000 • Reduce litter and dog waste bins - saving up to £90,000 • Restructure Adult Social Care Care-Home charges - generating up to £80,000 • Reduce the opening hours of the Household Waste Recycling Centres - saving up to £59,000 • Reduce the frequency of annual weed treatments - saving up to £20,000 • Reduce contributions to community transport - saving up to £10,000 If accepted, these proposals could contribute up to £1.75m – or 12.5% of the budget gap - to the Council’s budget next year. In identifying areas to make savings the priority is to protect the most vulnerable residents, minimise the impact on frontline services and ensure the budget for the years ahead properly reflects the true cost of delivering good quality services. The budget for 2024/25 is due to be considered by the Executive on Thursday 8 February 2024 and approved by Full Council on Thursday 29 February 2024. Both meetings will be open to the public and residents can attend either in person at the Market Street Offices or to stream live and on-demand via West Berkshire Council's YouTube channel. Read More...

Residents asked to share their views on policing budget

Published: 28 Nov 23

Matthew Barber, Police and Crime Commissioner for Thames Valley, is seeking resident’s views on the Thames Valley Police budget for 2024/25. He is asking residents to share their views on which areas they would like the policing element of council tax to be focused in the 2024/25 budget by completing his Local Crime Survey. The Police and Crime Commissioner is due to set the 2024/25 policing budget by the end of January 2024. By providing your feedback, you can help shape important decisions about police funding and how Thames Valley Police can continue to work to keep us all safe. The survey can be completed by visiting the PCC website. If you would like to share your views on the policing budget for 2024/25, please complete the survey by 12pm on Friday 5th January 2024. Read More...

Thames Valley Police statistics show over 500,000 contacts from the public over six-month period

Published: 28 Nov 23

New statistics show Thames Valley Police received over 500,000 contacts from the public, attended 81,000 incidents and made 16,000 arrests over a six-month period in 2023 from 1st April to 30th September. To find out more, please visit: https://www.thamesvalley.police.uk/news/thames-valley/news/2023/november/20-11-2023/thames-valley-police-statistics-show-over-500000-contacts-from-the-public-over-six-month-period---forcewide/ Read More...

Festive Cheer with Free Bus Travel in West Berkshire this Christmas!

Published: 21 Nov 23

Get ready for a jolly holiday season filled with free bus travel in West Berkshire! For a series of Saturdays in November and December, all bus journeys within West Berkshire will be FREE, providing an excellent chance to explore and enjoy various seasonal events and activities in the run up to Christmas! On Saturday, 18th November, 16th December and 23rd December you can travel all day, any time, completely FREE (do check the timetables) within West Berkshire. It's the perfect opportunity to shop for gifts, enjoy in the festive lights, catch the panto at the Corn Exchange, dine at local eateries, embrace the scenery, or spread the holiday cheer with pre-Christmas visits to family and friends. But that's not all! Free travel extends beyond West Berkshire to our neighbouring areas such as Reading, Basingstoke, and Swindon. If you start your journey in West Berkshire, your return journey is also FREE! But you need to request a return ticket from the driver when boarding to take advantage of this offer. Mark your calendars for these special days: • Saturday 18 November 2023: Witness the enchanting Newbury Christmas Lights switch-on or head over the border to the Reading Christmas Lights switch-on • Saturday 16 December 2023: Head to the vibrant Newbury Christmas Artisan Market • Saturday 23 December 2023: Dive into the last weekend of Christmas shopping or steam into Christmas at Didcot Railway Centre and help Santa find his missing reindeer! Read More...

West Berkshire Council trials new product to help residents move from petrol and diesel cars to electric

Published: 21 Nov 23

West Berkshire Council have announced a new trial that will revolutionise how residents without a driveway can charge their electric vehicle right from their home. This innovative trial uses a through-pavement channel developed by Kerbo Charge, where residents insert their charging cable into a channel in the pavement that also has a self-closing lid that closes behind like a zip. This allows residents to safely charge an electric vehicle on the road as it removes the risk of trips and falls from trailing charging cables from a property across the footway. Three sites (streets in Calcot, Newbury, and Kintbury) have been chosen for the trial which will run for several months and feedback from the installers, residents, public, and highways maintenance will be gathered and analysed. If feedback is positive and the trial is deemed a success, residents will be able to apply for a licence to install the channel in the footway by an approved supplier and contractor. Read More...

West Berkshire Council's Innovative Approach to Combat Potholes and Enhance Road Safety

Published: 21 Nov 23

In an innovative move, West Berkshire Council is piloting the use of Artificial Intelligence (AI) technology for predictive road management, which will help reduce costs in the future. Collaborating with industry leader, Vaisala, the AI technology in West Berkshire Council's inspection vehicles will now digitally capture images of the road conditions, traffic signs, and road markings to help predict where carriageways could become faulty, which in turn will help in decisions for future investments and maintenance projects. Using AI technology will provide analysis of data and reports building up layers of data that will map out defects after they've been captured. This is designed to enable West Berkshire Council to be more efficient in our road maintenance programmes with less time and money spent on finding and fixing carriageway problems across the district. As a reminder, residents can ‘report a problem’ they experience in Holybrook, whether it be pot holes, problems with litter or dog waste bins, overgrown foliage, litter and fly tipping, or dog foul on the pavements and verges, via West Berkshire Council’s 'Report a Problem' page on their website. Read More...

Thames Valley Police - Free Home Security Guide

Published: 21 Nov 23

Being burgled is a traumatic experience. It’s not just the financial cost of replacing stolen items, but also the emotional impact of feeling violated after a burglar has been in your home. Improving your home security is the best way to reduce the risk of becoming a victim. Download your FREE Home Security Guide produced by Thames Valley Police. https://www.thamesvalley.police.uk/police-forces/thames-valley-police/areas/advice/home-security-guide/ Read More...

Thank You!

Published: 14 Nov 23

A big thank you to everyone who took part in our most recent community litter pick on Saturday, 11th November, and to Kennet Valley Free Church for very kindly hosting the event. Lots of bags of rubbish were collected in and around the Fords Farm area in an effort to try to help keep the parish looking spic and span and litter free. The next litter picking event will be on Saturday, 20th January 2024, meeting at 10am at the Beansheaf Community Centre, so why not make it a New Year's resolution to get involved and do your bit to help out in your local community. Read More...

Councillor Stuart Gourley joins West Berkshire Council's Executive

Published: 31 Oct 23

Councillor Stuart Gourley has been appointed to West Berkshire Council’s Executive. It follows the resignation from the Executive of Councillor Adrian Abbs, who has chosen to sit as an independent councillor on West Berkshire Council. Council Leader Lee Dillon has appointed Stuart to the Executive with responsibility for Climate Action, Recycling and Biodiversity. Councillor Lee Dillon said: “I would like to thank Councillor Abbs for his time both on the Shadow Executive and most recently as part of the Executive and new administration. With a new Council Strategy recently adopted which includes a priority of tackling the climate and ecological emergency we remain focused on delivering in this area. I am delighted that Councillor Gourley will be taking up the reins to progress this important work.” Councillor Stuart Gourley, Executive Member for Climate Action, Recycling and Biodiversity said: “I have long been a strong voice in my ward for improvements to the River Lambourn and wider flooding issues across Newbury. It’s really important that we all keep working hard to limit our impact on our planet, and act local, to make sure we leave our future generations in a better, sustainable state. “I look forward to working hard on the challenges and imperatives to help mitigate and reduce the impact of climate change and the ecological emergency. We need to keep the focus on making West Berkshire a cleaner and greener place to live, work and play.” Read More...

No Trick or Treat Posters for Halloween

No Trick or Treat Posters for Halloween

Published: 30 Oct 23

If you would prefer not to be disturbed on Halloween, Thames Valley Police have produced a 'no trick or treat' poster, or flyer, to display at your home. Please collect a free copy from the Parish offices in the Beansheaf Centre on Charrington Road while stocks last. Read More...

Spring Bulb Planting Event - Saturday 21st October

Spring Bulb Planting Event - Saturday 21st October

Published: 19 Oct 23

Please come and join us for a spring bulb planting event on Saturday, 21st October designed to create a beautiful floral display in our parish for springtime. The plan is to meet at 10am at the Low Lane/Calcot Place Drive crossing point, and at 1pm in the Linear Park car park and plant bulbs in and around these two locations in designated areas. Please bring gardening hand tools and gloves if you have them, otherwise some equipment will be available. Everyone is welcome to one, or both, events and much needed refreshments will be provided for all participants. If you are a keen gardener and can spare some time to help out with this event, we would love to see you on Saturday. Read More...

Kennet Valley Primary School - Foundation Stage Admissions 2024

Kennet Valley Primary School - Foundation Stage Admissions 2024

Published: 12 Oct 23

Kennet Valley Primary School is offering an opportunity to visit the school to have a look around ahead of Foundation Stage admissions for 2024. If your child is going to be 4 years old on or before 31st August 2024, they can start school in September 2024. Come to the school to meet the Headteacher on Tuesday, 17th October at 9am, or Thursday, 9th November at 1.15pm. To book a place, please ring 0118 941 4410 or email office@kennetvalley.w-berks.sch.uk Read More...

Community Litter Pick Event: Saturday, 11th November 2023

Community Litter Pick Event: Saturday, 11th November 2023

Published: 9 Oct 23

Please join us for a Community Litter Pick on Saturday 11th November, meeting at the Kennet Valley Free Church at 10am. All equipment will be provided, as well as refreshments for all participants from midday. Do your bit to help keep Holybrook looking beautiful and litter free. Read More...

Carriageway resurfacing on A4 Bath Road, Calcot - WESTBOUND ONLY

Published: 9 Oct 23

West Berkshire Council’s contractor Volker Highways Ltd., will be undertaking essential carriageway resurfacing on A4 Bath Road overnight from 7pm on Monday, 16th October until 7am on Tuesday, 17th October. Works will be undertaken with a road closure and signed alternative diversion route. No on street parking will be permitted within the works and at times access to properties and businesses will be restricted or delayed as the resurfacing passes. Access WILL BE MADE AVAILABLE to emergency vehicles on a blue light call under site supervision. The start date and duration of work may change if wet weather occurs - residents have been instructed to look at the information board on site for revised dates. Read More...

Closure of Dorking Way

Published: 31 Aug 23

Dorking Way will be closed on the 11th September to 4th December 2023, the closure is expected to be from its junction with Bath Road to the junction of Honey Bee Street at the Fairfields development. The alternative route for all vehicles affected is via Charrington Rd, Bath Rd, and vice versa. The purpose of this closure is for SGN to upgrade and install new gas infrastructure. Residential access will be maintained throughout, and the diversion will be signposted. Please Note: Blue light access will be via the diversion route. All enquiries should be directed to: I & G Contractors on 01227 711 002 or SGN on 08009 121 700 A plan of the closure can be found at: https://one.network/?tm=GB135440740 Read More...

Big Community Switch is back! Helping residents to see if they can save on energy bills

Published: 8 Jun 23

The Big Community Switch is back, offering an opportunity for households to save on their energy bills by securing competitive tariffs with trusted energy suppliers. For more information please click on the link. Read More...

Credit Card Found During Litter Pick

Published: 5 Jun 23

A credit card was found during Saturday's community litter pick event. If this belongs to you, please call in to the Parish office in the Beansheaf Centre on Charrington Road, or call the office on 0118 945 4339. Read More...

E-Audiobooks FREE to Borrow

Published: 5 Jun 23

West Berkshire libraries have thousands of e-audiobooks free to borrow with a library card. Read More...

Neighbourhood Alert: Keyless Car Thefts

Published: 27 Apr 23

There has been an increase in reports of ‘Theft of Vehicles’ across the West Berkshire area, with recent thefts taking place in the Holybrook Parish. We would like to remind members of the public that if you see a crime in progress to please call 999. Also, if you have a Ring doorbell or CCTV and have footage of recent suspicious activity relating to car theft please call 101 or report on-line www.thamesvalley.police.uk/report-a-crime Can we please remind you to – • Always lock your vehicle • Remove any valuables • Use a steering wheel lock • Store your key in a Signal Blocking Pouch • Install a Vehicle Tracker • Fit a foldable bollard to your driveway • Have an immobiliser installed • Install CCTV and a motion sensor light at your property. Read More...

New mini recycling centre opens in Tilehurst

Published: 12 Jan 23

West Berkshire Council, in partnership with their waste contractor Veolia, have opened another new mini recycling centre in the district. The new site is located in Tilehurst at Cotswold Sports Centre, Downs Way, RG31 6SL. The mini recycling centre will have banks for: • plastic pots, tubs, trays and cans • small electricals • paper and cardboard • food and drink cartons (including paper tubes with metal ends) • textiles Read More...

Boosting Young People’s Mental & Emotional Health Through Sport

Published: 27 Oct 22

Sport in Mind are offering weekly after-school sessions for young people in Reading and West Berkshire. Young people are invited, or can be referred, to join these after school sessions to get active, and have fun with others in a relaxed, supportive, friendly environment. During the sessions young people will play multi-skills games and enjoy a range of confidence-building activities based on Sport in Mind’s central themes of heartrate, communication, breathing and focus. While improving their sporting ability, young people will also learn lots of ways to take care of themselves physically and mentally, and will be building emotional resilience. Read More...

Age UK Berkshire Maintenance Cognitive Stimulation in Calcot

Published: 29 Sep 22

Age UK Berkshire Maintenance Cognitive Stimulation will be starting a new group in The Calcot Centre from 19th October 2022. The group will run weekly on Wednesdays from 10:30–11:30. Participants will be able to take part in a range of activities designed to help maintain memory. Read More...

Fire Service Safe and Well Visits

Published: 26 Sep 22

Royal Berkshire Fire and Rescue Service provides a 'Safe and Well Visit' to all Berkshire residents. This free service provides vulnerable residents with tailored fire safety advice, smoke detection, hearing impaired alarms (if needed) and well-being advice with signposting to additional agencies. Read More...

Emergency Cost of Living Crisis Fund Launched

Published: 26 Sep 22

Greenham Trust and West Berkshire Council have launched a £100,000 Emergency Cost of Living Crisis Fund to help charities support those affected by unaffordable hikes in energy prices and double-digit inflation. Read More...

Calcot Singing for the Brain

Published: 1 Sep 22

Singing for the Brain is a social activity for people with dementia and their carers taking place on the first Tuesday of the month at Kennet Valley Free Church. Read More...

Healthcare Travel Costs Scheme

Published: 30 Aug 22

Did you know that patients and carers on low incomes can reclaim their travel costs for attending hospital appointments? If you’re a patient or carer who receives benefits or is on a low income, you may be eligible to claim back the cost of travelling to specialist healthcare appointments by public transport or car. Read More...

PLEASE REGISTER YOUR BIKES

Published: 24 Jan 20

Thames Valley Police no longer accept bikes that have been found by a member of the public or take reports of lost bikes. Please read for more information. Read More...