Warndon Parish Council Happy New Year

2021 has been an uncertain and stressful year for many of us, with the loss of loved ones, livelihoods and freedoms that we take for granted, being difficult to bear. However, on the positive side it has also brought out the best in our community.

It has been heart-warming to see that when people have needed help, the community have willingly responded. We would like to take this opportunity to thank the many volunteers who contribute their time in a broad range of activities within our community.

We should be proud of what this community have achieved in the last year and hope that this continues into the new year.

Here’s to a healthy and happy 2022.

The Here2Help Community Services Directory

In September 2021, Here2Help launched its Community Services Directory as part of its wider service to help residents search for a range of services and support offered by charities, community groups, businesses, public sector groups and other organisations in their local area and across the whole of Worcestershire. These services include mental health and wellbeing, financial advice, assistance and supplies, volunteering opportunities, recreation activities and much more.

Since its launch in September, over 275 organisations have signed up to offer support and services to Worcestershire residents. The Here2Help team have also been out visiting various libraries in the County to talk to residents about the Here2Help Service and the Community Services Directory.

Do you know any local organisations that may be interested in registering their service on the Here2Help Community Services Directory? More information can be found by visiting http://www.worcestershire.gov.uk/here2help

New Worcester Secondary School

Public Consultation 29 November 2021 to 23 January 2022

Secondary School Nov 21 a

Following feedback from the public engagement event, Worcestershire County Council are now seeking views on the proposals for the new school. These include:

  • pupil age range
  • size of the school
  • location
  • values
  • build principles

 

Have your say!

Please follow the link below

Have your say! Engagement with stakeholders and residents | New Worcester Secondary School | Worcestershire County Council

If you require a paper copy of the questionnaire, please email 

 

Young People’s Poetry Competition 2022

The Parish Council plans to sponsor a poetry competition for young people in and around the area, taking place in Spring 2022.  The theme will be “a place or a space or a wild thing” –  a church, tree, field, shop, playpark, house, pond, butterfly, squirrel, or duckling for example, ideally around the parish. Think about the history and the ecology – and let your imagination take over !!

Contributions will judged by a panel including Leena Batchelor the previous Worcester Poet Laureate, now poet in residence at The Commandery.

Illustrated contributions will be displayed in the Hub Community Centre on Ankerage Green and in local shops in June/July;  the winners will be invited to read their poems at the Villages Fete planned for 10th July and the awards presented there.  Besides the fun of taking part, prizes of £25, £15 and £10 will be made to the winners in the three age groups, primary, secondary & sixth form along with certificates & mementoes.

 

Contact Councillor Jan Scrine at for further information;

for inspiration, look at our Villages Heritage Trail, https://warndonparishcouncil.org/warndon-villages-heritage-trail

or the Warndon Woodlands Nature Trails, https://warndonparishcouncil.org/warndon-woodlands-nature-trails

 

Cold Mornings – reminder from West Mercia Police

Although vehicle crime is low across West Mercia, every winter the force receives a number of reports from drivers who have had their cars stolen after leaving the engine running, while they wait in the warmth of their home for it to heat up and defrost the windscreen.

Some vehicle owners nip inside for just a few seconds to collect a bag or finish the last mouthful of their breakfast coffee – but that’s all the time an opportunist thief needs. To ‘freeze out’ the thieves, West Mercia Police advises motorists to:

  • Clear windscreens with de-icer and a scraper
  • Sit in vehicles while the heater de-mists the windscreen

Drivers who ignore this advice are taking big risks. Thieves will drive around residential areas looking for likely targets – when they spot a vehicle with its engine left running on a drive or outside a home, it’s there for the taking.

One person will be dropped off, gets into the target vehicle and simply drives away.

Many of the vehicles are never recovered, and some – especially high value models such as Mercedes, BMW and Audi – may be shipped overseas.

It is also worth remembering if your car is stolen when keys have been left in it, you may find your insurance will not cover you. If your house keys are stolen along with your car, your home is then vulnerable too.

So, this winter, don’t give criminals an easy ride by leaving your car running unattended.

For more information please contact me

PCSO Anderson 6224

Safer Neighbourhood Team – Warndon

Warndon Safer Neighbourhood Team

We are a dedicated group of police officers and community support officers (PCSOs) who work with local communities and partner organisations to keep our residents, businesses and visitors safe and to prevent crime and tackle anti-social behaviour in your locality.

Officers can be contacted on the below numbers concerning community issues. To report a crime in progress call 999 and for non-emergencies , report online at https://www.westmercia.police.uk/report.

If you are unable to report online you can contact us via the 101 non-emergency number.

 

PC Jason Hart  07811 769845

PC Jason Schimmel  TBC

PCSO David Anderson  07811 769900

PCSO Mark Dodkin  07814 041353

PCSO Michael Exon  07811 769708

 

New Defibrillator – Harley Warren

Warndon Parish Council would like to thank the resident in Harley Warren for allowing the Parish  defibrillator to be sited on their garage wall. The new location is just off Dugdale Drive in Haines Avenue. The defibrillator is one of three sited within the Parish. The others being  outside the Lyppard Hub and at Tesco Express.

First Aid and Defibrillator Training,  arranged by the Parish Council will be taking place on 16th 19th October. Further training sessions can be arranged in  the future,  should there be sufficient interest.  Please contact the Clerk 

 

New Secondary School for Worcester City

Autumn 2021 Update
Public Engagement 11 May to 11 June 2021

This engagement marked the first opportunity to have a say about what is important in the delivery of a new secondary school. Nearly 600 responses were received as part of the recent engagement survey for a new secondary school in Worcester. Over 80% of those who had their say agreed or strongly agreed that a new secondary school in Worcester was needed.

Respondents felt that the key factors to be considered for when building a new school in the city are:

  • Students feel safe in and around school, the school has strong leadership, that students feel their mental health and wellbeing is well supported, and that students make good academic progress.
  • The school should be located within the local community it will serve and accessible by active travel routes from day one, taking into account existing congestion.
  • Any new build should take consideration of sustainability and energy efficiency, and use local resources where possible.

The survey also highlighted that residents feel that the new school should be integrated within its  new community. This can be done by promoting community use of facilities and by prioritising children living nearby in the admissions criteria. To view the survey results in full, please visit:
https://www.worcestershire.gov.uk/newsecondaryschool

Coming up

The results from the engagement have significantly helped to draw together plans for the new school. The next steps are to seek approval from Cabinet to consult on the proposed specification for the school, including age range, size, and location. If approved, we will then be undertaking a consultation on these proposals. Look out in for more information on this and ways to get involved. We intend for the process for an academy sponsor to commence early in 2022, when we will be issuing the specification, following feedback from the consultation, and application form for any interested Academy Trusts. We will also be commencing the pre-planning phase next term once we are able to confirm the proposed site

Leopard Hill – and Darwin Field

The spike of the south western corner of our Parish Boundary encloses Leopard Hill. The name derives from the manor that lay on the site of the current pub, Lyppard Grange, often spelled “Leopard” and the hill formed part of their demesne. It is a corruption of the Anglo Saxon “Lip Perd”, possibly a deer-leap in a hedge.

The hill-top is the highest point above the city, providing panoramic views over the spires to the Malvern Hills. It played a part in the Civil War battles for supremacy; off Tamar Close is the Grade ll listed site of ‘Cromwell’s trenches’. This plateau was a vantage point and possible gun emplacement, where Cromwell’s men dug in as they besieged the Royalists in 1642; they would have marched along the ancient highway from Crowle, now called Newtown Road, and they used Leopard Hill for surveillance at the very least. An officer’s high quality sword with a pommel dating from that time has been found nearby.

After the Dissolution of the monasteries in the 1500s, ownership of these lands had passed to the Dean & Chapter of the Cathedral who leased them to the farmers. The tenants paid tithes to the Dean and Chapter; the tithe records show that in 1834 some fields on the side of Leopard Hill were arable but most were pasture.

Leopard Hill was then leased to the Worcester City Golf Club which was founded in 1898, as an 18 hole course. That golf club folded in the 1930s and the course was taken over by Tolladine Golf Club until that closed in 2006.

The 18 hole site originally included Ronkswood Hill Meadows and stretched down to Newtown Road. Then in 1941, Ronkswood Hospital was built on part of the golf course, being opened under the Emergency Medical Services Act; the single storey ‘huts’ provided 450 beds for wounded servicemen during WW2. It became part of Worcester Royal Infirmary in 1952, operational until the new Hospital was opened in 2002.

The golf course was reduced to 9 holes after losing the land to the Hospital, although some of the old tees and greens can still be discerned in Ronkswood Hill Meadows when the conditions are right. Friends remember playing the 9th / 18th hole as a very steep descent from the top of the hill down towards the unpretentious clubhouse.

While Ronkswood Hill Meadows with their medieval ‘ridge and furrow’ field pattern are now a designated nature reserve, managed by the City Council, no such protection currently exists for the ‘Old Golf Course’. Nature has taken over many of the greens but the fairways are still visible; the conifers and oaks that deflected golfers’ drives have grown even more majestic. Wildlife abounds, including butterflies, owls, kestrels, buzzards, bats, and a profusion of wild flowers.

Recently, developers have begun building another block of houses off The Fairway, near the old clubhouse ruins, despite strong opposition from residents who were supported by the Parish Council since it was deemed ‘over development’; a vintage oak tree was eventually safeguarded. Other developers have sought planning consent to build a tightly crammed block of housing on ‘Darwin Field’, the section of the course that abuts Darwin Avenue. In the corner was previously the sixth tee, with the fairway running along the hedge that is now the boundary of the Stableford Development. Under the current South Worcestershire Development Plan, an allocation for housing had been made for the adjacent field that had belonged to Aconbury Farm, including the boggy area that was formerly the fifth green. Most of this allocation has been taken up by the Stableford Development but an allocation of 41 houses remains. The developers Bromford want to build 51 houses, after knocking down three on Darwin Avenue, by spilling over into the grassy area of the old golf course and removing all the mature (TPO) trees in the Field. This has been strongly opposed by local residents, again supported by the Parish Council as overdevelopment of the site; recently that ‘scorched earth’ application has been rejected by the City Planning Committee despite the recommendations of the Planning Officers.  However, in September 2021, the application has been re-submitted.

The Neighbourhood Plan seeks to conserve our open land as amenity assets, encouraging people to take advantage of fresh air and the solace of nature, and seeks to have the old Golf course designated as “Local Green Space”, an important designation which provides a degree of protection broadly equivalent to Green Belt. Watch this space… !

 

By Jan Scrine, with input from Andy Taylor and Barbara Hopper.

 

Warndon Parish Neighbourhood Draft Plan – Public Consultation

Following 4 years of hard work, Warndon Parish Neighbourhood Draft Plan is now subject to an official 6-week public consultation stage. The summary of the draft plan sets out the key issues for Warndon Parish over the next ten years and the proposed policies.

A Neighbourhood Plan helps to shape development of our Parish – it is by far the strongest way for locals to have their views put forward and enshrined in local Planning Policy, as it will sit alongside the South Worcestershire Development Plan (currently under review).

During week commencing 10th May all households in the Parish will be receiving a paper copy of the consultation document, inside there will be a detachable Questionnaire to complete. Once completed this can be dropped off to the ‘Neighbourhood Plan Letterboxes’ which can found at either the Lyppard Hub or Tesco (Millwood Drive), or alternatively it can be completed online by following the link                                                  https://consultations.rcaregeneration.co.uk/warndon-neighbourhood-plan-21  

A full version of the draft plan including a number of maps, together with the supporting evidence based documents will also be available to view via the above link.

The consultation period will run from 10th May to 21st June 2021.