Trotshill Lane East play area

Update  from Worcester City Council.

The swings at Trotshill Lane East play area which were damaged a some weeks ago and removed for safety reasons are being replaced. However, as with everything at the moment there is a long lead time when orders are placed. The City Council may have to consider replacing with an alternative type of swing subject to availability.

Wildflower Notices and Green Spaces

Residents will see notices being installed around the parish by Worcester City Council informing residents why some greenspaces are being left to bloom.

As residents we can all do our bit by leaving an area in our gardens unmown or undisturbed or add some insect friendly plants.

‘One small step’ for each household, but together ‘one big step’ for our natural environment’.

Police and Communities Together (PACT) Drop-in Sessions

With immediate effect the PACT surgery currently held at Woodgreen Church (corner of Woodgreen Drive/Hastings Drive) on Thursdays will be replaced.

You can now find us at the church every other Sunday between 10:45-11:30am starting from Sunday 26th June.

This is an opportunity to meet the Safer Neighbourhood Team, discuss local priorities, complete crime surveys or just for an informal chat.

We hope that the change will allow a more diverse and inclusive range of people to be able to meet with us.

If you are not able to see them in person, but have a crime, anti-social behaviour or neighbourhood concerns then please report it online or call 101 or email .

In an emergency always call 999.

New Wildlife Habitats

Worcester City Council are currently creating new wildlife habitats on some of our green spaces in the parish. They are building log piles to encourage insects, small mammals and fungi, so they too can make this area their home!

WPC wildlife habitatas1

 

WPC wildlife habitats2

Play equipment – Trotshill Lane East

Sadly due to vandalism, the Parish Warden has today removed the netting from the play equipment at Trotshill Lane East for safety reasons.

It has been referred to Worcester City Council who will be replacing it in due course.

West Mercia Police – Contact Us

The Police attended the Parish Council meeting held on Monday 7th February at the Lyppard Hub. The Parish Council expressed their concerns at the level of car crime in the area in recent months. The Police representatives confirmed they are dealing with all reports and have requested that residents keep reporting incidents to them and where possible provide CCTV footage.

Please call 101 or report online https://www.westmercia.police.uk/contact/af/contact-us/ or contact the local policing team on . Or if you wish you can speak directly to the Neighbourhood Team at Warndon Police Post, Cranham Parade, Cranham Drive, Worcester every Wednesday between 2-4 p.m.

PC Hart also issued a reminder to all residents to ensure vehicles are locked at all times.

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 – Update

Spring 2022 Update

Public Consultation November 2021

 

Following the results of an engagement survey in Summer 2021, this public consultation provided an opportunity for parents, residents, and young people of Worcester City and surrounding areas to comment on the proposals. The consultation was designed to ensure the vision, design, delivery and expectations of the specification and the design construction of a new school are in line with the hopes and expectations of those directly impacted by the scheme.

238 people responded to the consultation, as well as 55 primary school children who took part in workshops. 90% of respondents either agreed or strongly agreed that a new secondary school is needed for Worcester. Respondents were asked how they felt about various aspects of the proposal for the delivery of the new school. These included: age range; location; school size; school values; and build principles.

Key findings of the consultation are as follows:

– The majority of respondents supported the proposed age range of 11-16 but those who disagreed wished to see a sixth form included in the new school.

– 83% of respondents agreed with the proposed values of the school, which included a focus on wellbeing, an ethos of inclusivity and a strong behaviour policy. Feedback suggested a greater emphasis on academic achievement should be ensured.

– Whilst most respondents agreed with the proposed location, 31% disagreed due to concerns about the volume of traffic and close proximity to the hospital.

– Respondents were also pleased with the focus on energy-efficient building methods.

These results will be used to finalise the specification and guide future decision making in the delivery of the new school. To view the consultation results in full, please visit: https://www.worcestershire.gov.uk/newsecondaryschool

 

Coming Up

The results from the consultation have helped us to complete the specification requirements for the new school. The next step is to commence the Academy Sponsor Competition to determine the Academy Trust that will run the new school. The competition will ensure that applicants are fully informed in the expectations and requirements for a secondary school in Worcester City and ensure children and young people receive the best education possible.

The competition will open from 14th March to 25th April 2022 and will be tendered in accordance with the Council’s procurement procedures and follow the Department for Education (DfE) Free School Presumption Process. Following this, interviews will be held with the academies and a candidate will be determined in July 2022.

Interested parties can register and make applications via the Worcestershire County Council Electronic Tendering Site. Please note you must be an approved Academy Sponsor by the close of the competition to be considered.

To keep up to date with the Academy Sponsor Competition, and view new information and documents as they are uploaded, please visit:
https://www.worcestershire.gov.uk/newsecondaryschool

 

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

 

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.