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Community Information

West Berkshire Voluntary and Community Sector Knowledge Event 

Want to meet more than 50 West Berkshire voluntary and community sector organisations all under one roof ?

Make a date in your diary to visit the West Berkshire Voluntary and Community Sector Knowledge Event at:
  • Newbury Racecourses Berkshire Stand
  • Thursday 29th March 9.30 am to 4.30 pm
Are you supporting someone that needs help? Have you just moved into the area and want to get to know what’s going on and who does what? Are you a business looking to help in the community, or are you a potential volunteer or a member of a local organisation that wants to work with other groups ?
It’s a chance to find out more about children's services, older people's services, disability services, learning disability services, listening charities, Young Family support, some arts organisations, cancer charities, health services, mental health support, dementia support services, stop smoking help, befriending services, local transport services, local funders and much more.

For more information email info@vcwb.org.uk

Do you LOVE your Library? West Berkshire Council's Special Celebration Event 17 February

"February is universally the month to show your love, but there’s no need to hold out until Valentine’s Day. We're asking you to show your love for your local library during February as part of our Love Your Library campaign.
 
In West Berkshire, there is already a lot to love about your local library. But we know it takes two to tango in any relationship, so we’re working really hard to make sure that you don’t lose that loving feeling.
We’d like to take a step closer to our customers to find out how they really feel about West Berkshire Libraries.
If you really care and can’t imagine a life without libraries, come and pour your heart out at a special Love Your Library celebration where you can share your thoughts and ideas about how we can improve the library service and plan a brighter future together.
When: Saturday 17 February anytime between 10am and 4pm
Where: Newbury Library, The Wharf, RG14 5AU.
Here are a few reasons to keep loving your library.
• No reservation fee – from 1 March
• Free Wi-Fi
• Friendly, welcoming staff who are happy to help you
• 200+ trained volunteers in West Berkshire Libraries (lots of volunteering opportunities)
• Free e-books and e-magazines – 134 magazine titles now available
• New books including all the bestsellers
• Reserve online – pick up and return at any branch library that suits you
Dominic Boeck, West Berkshire’s Executive Member for Culture and Leisure said: “There are so many reasons to love our local libraries. This special event is not only a great way to show how much you care about this valuable community service but to really get involved in the ongoing transformation of all West Berkshire libraries.
Libraries are so more than just books, they provide a safe space in which to enjoy peace and quiet and to focus in the company of like-minded people. They have the potential to be all things to all people, from a community meeting place to providing the building blocks for learning and discovery.”
If you love your library, let us know. Tell us why in your own way. This could be a poem, story, or a picture. Share your contribution on social media on the @newburylibrary facebook page or tweet @WBerksLibraries using #loveyourlibrary or come along to Newbury Library and display your thoughts on the Love Your Library board."

New West Berkshire Council Wards

The Local Government Boundary Commission for England proposals for West Berkshire Council are published today (16 January), setting out the new warding arrangements for the May 2019 elections (subject to approval in Parliament). 

Locally, for Mortimer and Burghfield, the Commission has accepted the representations that we four local Conservative councillors (Graham Bridgman, West Berkshire Member for Mortimer; Keith Chopping, Member for Sulhamstead; Carol Jackson Doerge, Member for Burghfield and Ian Morrin, Member for Burghfield) made, supporting the West Berkshire Council response - agreeing the Commission’s proposal for a new three member Burghfield & Mortimer Ward, but (importantly) to exclude the southern part of Sulhamstead that the Commission originally proposed as part of the new ward.

The new ward will be comprised of the parishes of Beech Hill, Burghfield, Stratfield Mortimer and Wokefield and will have an anticipated variance from the predicted average number of electors per councillor in 2023 (3,028) of -1%.

The other local changes are that the Commission has accepted the criticism (which we joined in with) of its proposed vast new Aldermaston, Bradfield and Bucklebury ward and instead there will be three new one member wards: Aldermaston (Aldermaston, Beenham, Brimpton, Padworth and Wasing parishes; +4% variance from the predicted average number of electors per councillor in 2023), Bradfield (Bradfield, Englefield, Sulhamstead and Ufton Nervet; +2%), and Bucklebury (Bucklebury, Midgham, Stanford Dingley and Woolhampton; -1%).

For the report, maps, summary etc. visit https://www.lgbce.org.uk/current-reviews/south-east/berkshire/west-berkshire

Parish Council Report from Cllr Graham Bridgman

The report for the period up to the 10th January, 2018 can be found here.

Thames Water - Mortimer lane Public Drop-in Session

Thames Water will be replacing their water pipes on Mortimer Lane and are planning to start the work on 5th February. 

 Further enquiries can be made by calling 0800 316 9800, selecting option one and quoting the reference number BB233235. 

Volunteering Opportunities in West Berkshire 

There are many opportunities for volunteering in the local area be it a Handybus Driver, a volunteer engineer or a group fundraiser. Details of all the new and current  volunteering opportunities can be found at: http://www.volunteerwestberks.org.uk/current_vacancies.htm 

Lost and Found 

The weightlifters bench, recently found on The Fairground, close to the Windmill Road gate remains unclaimed. If you believe this item to be yours, please contact the Parish Council Office on 0118 9331955.

Mortimer Library

Did you know that you could use the library outside opening hours for meetings of small groups such as a book club, bridge club, games evening etc. If you would like to know more about how to go about arranging this please email lisa.richardson@westberks.gov.uk

M4 Bridge Refurbishment Works - Weekend Closures 

During work to demolish and install the bridge deck beams on the M4, it will be necessary to fully close the east and westbound carriageways between junctions 12 and 13 for entire weekend periods (21:00 Friday through to 05:00 Monday).

It is planned for the motorway to be closed on the following dates:

• Friday 15 to Monday 18 December 2017
• Friday 12 to Monday 15 January 2018
• Friday 19 to Monday 22 January 2018 (contingency).

Significant delays are expected during these weekend closure periods, and it is advisable that you plan ahead of your journey to allow for extra time or avoid this route where possible.

During all closures a clearly signed diversion will be in place via the A4 (through Newbury, Thatcham and Woolhampton).

Further information can be obtained by calling 0300 123 5000 or email info@highwaysengland.co.uk or you can visit the website at www.highways.gov.uk/roads.

Mortimer Library Update

For the last three months there has been a new service at Mortimer Library, with it being run by permanent staff assisted by volunteers. Things have gone smoothly and this is a credit to the permanent staff and the volunteers. The future of the library now seems secure in the medium term.

There is however, a drop in usage which is a concern for the longer term. It has been stated that the stock and choice is limited. The stock on display is a small proportion of the books that WBC own. Did you know that the stock can be viewed on the WBC web site and most of the books can be ordered through it? If you have any difficulties with this call in at the Library and assistance can be provided.

Victim of a Scam?

If you have been a victim of a scam or know someone that has, it is important that you  report your experience so that support can be offered and to help other people to avoid being scammed.

 A recent survey of over 300 local people by the Public Protection Partnership (which covers West Berkshire, Wokingham and Bracknell Forest) and Citizens Advice has revealed that as many as 71% of residents have been targeted by scammers, but that only 57% reported the incident to the Citizens Advice, Police or Trading Standards.

Citizens Advice should be the first port of call if someone is aware of a scam or has been scammed - 03454 040506 (Monday to Friday between 09:00 and 17:00).