Minutes of the Annual Parish Meeting held in the Phoenix Hall On Thursday, 8th March, 2018 at 7.00 p.m.

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Parish Councillors Present:Cllr. T. BarkerChairman
Cllr. D. BurkeVice-Chairman
Cllr. Mrs. L. Barker
Cllr. F. Collison
Cllr. B. Covil
Cllr. R. Hayward
Cllr. A. Linscer
Cllr. P. Mackay
Cllr. Mrs. M. Mitchell
In Attendance:Mrs. Mary TowleClerk of the Council
25 members of the public


The consultation was to gauge the feelings of the users of the Millennium Park with children on the plans for the new equipment in the Park.

A display of the proposed new equipment was laid out and approximately 30 people attended.   The feedback was very positive with people agreeing that the additional equipment would provide more interesting play for children.

Also on display was work by the pupils of All Saints School, the Enford and Avon Valley Youth Club, History Group and the proposed new village crest.


The Chairman welcomed everyone to the meeting and thanked them for their support.   John Tighe stepped down in January after 10 years as a Netheravon Councillor and Chairman of the Council.   Thanks must go to him for his unstinting service to Netheravon over 10 years.

  1.   Chairman’s Report

The Parish Council has been very active since last year, and the following are some of the many things which the Council has undertaken.

  • Geoff Dyer’s Memorial in the Cemetery
  • Phoenix Hall:  
    • Building control application approved for the kitchen
    • PC gave donation to help with the refurbishment of the kitchen
    • Kitchen is well underway – as you have all seen
  • Youth Club going from strength to strength.   Congratulations to the Youth Workers for all their hard work to make a successful Youth Club.   They deserve the thanks from the whole of Netheravon and surrounding villages
  • Cob Wall – a solution to the Health and Safety issue was found by putting a close board fence along the damaged wall which will protect users of the Phoenix Hall Car Park from any potential falling debris
  • Millennium Park – plans to add additional play equipment for small children – the Clerk will be applying for an Awards for All lottery grant
  • The War Memorial was cleaned in time for Remembrance Day
  • Party in the Park – the Parish Council supported this successful event with a donation
  • A345 Traffic Calming.   We have managed to secure part funding from the Community Area Transport Group for Gateway Signs.   We ran a poster competition to get ideas for a village logo. The finished logo is displayed today thanks to Cllr. Mackay.  

Zoe Linscer won the competition for the best design and I would like to present a Book Token for £25  

  • Cemetery – the extension has been fenced by the MOD.   40 trees will be planted later in the year to commemorate the end of WW1
  • Flooding and gullies in the High Street.   The gullies have been cleared, but there appears to still be an obstruction which Highways have promised to investigate
  • The Parish Council have bought the phonebox in the High Street for £1 and put a defibrillator in it.
  • Family Learning Festival – the Parish Council supported this event and a successful ‘Anyone Can Cook’ event was held.

Lastly, thank you to the staff – Cemetery caretaker, Litter Picker and David Austin who retired as Clerk in July 2017 and the present Clerk, Mary Towle, for all their loyalty and dedication to the Village.

  1.   Day Centre

Elizabeth Mitchell reported:

The Day Centre is run by a committee composed of the three Trustees, the Organiser and Vice Organiser and four members.  The Trustees are the Chairman – Caroline Aubrey-Fletcher, the Secretary – Elizabeth Mitchell and the Treasurer – Emma Peacocke. All the aforementioned are formally elected at the AGM in May.  The Organiser is Myrtle Dore and the Vice-Organiser is Chris Covil. In addition we have approximately 8 volunteer helpers, who work either morning or afternoon on a roster run by the Organiser.  We also have 2/3 volunteer drivers who collect and return members who require transport, but mostly this is now done by Caroline.

There are currently 12 members: 6 from Netheravon/Haxton and 4 from Figheldean, 1 from Durrington and 1 from Rushall.  Lunches are now cooked again by Helen Whitley from Enford who delivers them every Wednesday at midday. This is a great relief as the lunches are good and it has relieved the  Chairman of the weekly duty of this.

The Day Centre runs from 10.00 to 3.00 pm.  Members have a cup of tea or coffee and biscuits on arrival and then play games and socialise until a home-cooked lunch at about midday.  After lunch they have occasional other activities or play games, including bingo and a raffle. Before departure they have a cup of tea and cake.

As we have some very elderly, less mobile members we have done less outings.  However, instead of our usual tea dance/musical afternoon we had the Ukulele Band come and play to us.  It was attended by members and others and was enjoyed by all, with lots singing and clapping along and even playing percussion instruments.  Our wonderful volunteers provided tea and cakes for all. In December we went to the pantomime again - “Jack and the Beanstalk”. The Chairman took some of the lady members to Andover for a few hours shopping and lunch.

We are very grateful to Netheravon Parish Council for their donation to the Day Centre.  We are pleased that despite concerns to the contrary Wiltshire Council have given us a grant again for 2018 - 2019 at the same level as last year, although 10% less than preceding years.  We have no guarantee of it being given in the future, but I am sure we will find ways and means of keeping this very valuable service to our community going.

We are very fortunate to have a wonderful team of volunteers in the Day Centre on Wednesdays, but we are running very low on drivers, having only one regular driver with Caroline taking up the slack of 5 - 6 runs a month.

We have sadly lost four members this year and they are always very much missed.  To that end now that we have better cooking arrangements in place we have spaces for some new members so please if you think there is someone who would benefit from coming once a week let us know.  We really do have fun and they are a great crowd.

  1.   Plans for the Millennium Park

Cllr. Andy Linscer outlined the plans which the Parish Council have to improve play facilities in the Millennium Park.   The wood which is damaged on Trim Trail will be renewed and mulch put along the span of the equipment to prevent a slippery surface when the grass is wet.   A new piece of equipment will be installed in the shape of a Brig or ship which will encompass, ladders, slides and climbing. This will be installed on mulch.   The Clerk will be applying for an ‘Awards for All’ grant for the whole project. If we are not awarded the money, the Council will still provide the equipment, but it will be in stages.

  1.   Village Crest

Cllr. Peter Mackay explained that he has been working hard to get traffic calming measures on the A345 to try to slow the speed down.   The Community Area Transport Group (CATG) have awarded the Parish Council a grant of 50% of the cost of putting new Gateway signs into the Village.   These will have a village crest, which was designed by a Zoe Linscer, and slides which will advertise village functions such as the Church Fete. A permanent sign will say ‘Home of the Red Devils’.   At the moment there is a discussion with Wiltshire Council about the location of the signs which will be finalised later in the month.

  1.   Soapbox Challenge

Cllr. David Burke explained that as a change from the Pedal Car Race, the Council have agreed to a ‘Soapbox Challenge’.   This will be held on the same date as the Church Fete and will take place by kind permission of Peter Thomas from Cormayles who has volunteered his front lawn for the track.   David said that he hopes a lot or organisations will take part and make their own soapbox. For people who need help in building their soapbox workshops will be held in the Phoenix Hall to help with the design and manufacture.

  1.   Update on Dog and Gun

James Russell who owns the Dog and Gun very kindly gave residents an update of what is happening and what to expect when the work on the pub is complete.   He hopes that the extensive work will be completed by the end of the year. He has applied for planning permission to build on the old patio area a function room for live music and other events.   The pub will be divided in half with side nearest the road being changed into a snug and games room which will be called ‘Nelson’s Bar’. The rest of the ground floor will be a café/tearoom during the day and a Bistro at in the evening.   There will also be 5 double bedrooms upstairs.

These plans were received very well and James was wished every success.

  1.   Jubilee Committee

Ian Blair-Pilling reported that there were several plans which the Jubilee Committee were working on.   These are:

  • Print the book by Wayne Price about the villagers who died in the wars
  • Produce a digitised map of the villages of Netheravon, Enford, Haxton and Fittleton as they were from the end of WW1.  

There will be details of individuals and photographs

  • The School is doing a History Project
  • The Parish Council will be organising the planting of 40 trees in the Cemetery
  • There will be a launch event for the book and the map on a date to be confirmed
  • There will be a curry lunch at the Working Men’s Club on Remembrance Sunday
  1.   Phoenix Hall

Cllr. Roger Hayward took everyone on a tour of the new kitchen.   He said that 189 volunteer hours had been worked since Christmas which was truly remarkable.   The Phoenix Hall Committee need to raise money to finish the kitchen and this underway thanks to Alan Wood who has managed to get a grant from Tesco and who is organising a Giant Jumble sale in April.   The bookings are up by 12% and they have a wedding and big party booked for later in the year.

  1. Enford and Avon Valley Youth Club

Sue from the Youth Club reported that they have 137 young people on their books who come from villages from Durrington to Upavon.   The numbers in winter are not as great as in summer when there is the opportunity to have games on the School playing field. It is a thriving Youth Club, but as a result more volunteers are needed.

  1.   Church Report

Richard Aubrey-Fletcher reported that there are 7 parishes which are looked after by 2 full time priests, Rev’d Philip Bromiley who lives in Durrington, and Rev’d Gail Hunt who lives in Netheravon.   They are assisted by Chrysogen Bamber who is a licensed Lay Preacher. As well as clergy there is an army of people who look after the church by cleaning it, looking after the churchyard and making the church look beautiful with their flower arrangements.   The Parochial Church Council manages the building and activities as a registered charity. They have to raise an enormous amount of money each year for the diocese as well as day-to-day running costs. They are subject to scrutiny and inspection which includes safeguarding.   There will be an architects inspection later this year.

All Saints Church, Netheravon is 900 years old and is open for quiet times every day.   There are services every Sunday to suit everyone and the Church is available for families who want Christenings, Marriages and Funerals.

  1. Questions from Members of the Public

There were no questions from the public.


The meeting closed at 8.15pm