Although we are already into February I hope it is not too late to wish a Happy New Year to everyone in Wing, while giving a brief update on recent activity from the Parish Council, which met at the end of January and previously at the end of November.
- Top of the bill, and speaking of the Council as Trustee of the Wing Village Hall charity, is to warmly welcome Sally Cox’s willingness to step forward and re-invigorate the Village Hall Management Committee. A meeting of interested villagers has already been held, at which several volunteers came forward, and you will read elsewhere about the imminent AGM which will elect a new committee for the year ahead. As we emerge from the Covid pandemic, there is a real opportunity to reinstate the Hall as the centre of village life where it belongs.
- The Council itself is still below strength, with two vacancies to fill following the resignations of Richard Tulloch last spring and Helen Cullen at the end of the year. Huge thanks are due to Helen for shouldering the burden of Village Hall administration on behalf of the Trustee over recent months, and for her initiatives in securing grant funding that has seen the Hall though the pandemic while hiring income disappeared. Richard’s and Helen’s shoes will be hard to fill, and repeated pleas for villagers to express an interest in joining the Council, whether by election or co-option, have so far not brought forward any volunteers. This really is a wonderful opportunity to serve the community in a relatively undemanding way, and to discover what makes it tick. Do please get in touch with me as Chair, or any other Councillor, if you have a little time to give. It does not matter whether you have been in the village 50 years or 5 minutes!
Other recent business of the Council has included:
- Setting the Parish Precept for the coming year; Councillors approved a small increase in the Precept to restore the reserve to recommended levels.
- Establishing a database for communication within the village by email; participation is entirely voluntary and we will continue to supplement this medium by using paper for those who prefer it. Thanks to Susannah Fish for her work on this.
- Promotion of the voucher scheme to provide ultrafast fibre broadband to houses and businesses in Wing; again participation is entirely voluntary. Thanks to Jon Roberts and Mark Sayers for their help with this.
- Liaison with Historic England and Rutland County Council regarding maintenance of Wing Maze. RCC have undertaken to make repairs to the fencing, and HE have provided a schedule of works required to maintain the maze itself. The Council is looking for a sponsor or volunteer who would be willing to keep the maze looking smart throughout the year. Thanks to Judith Oakley for her persistence on this one.
- Liaison with RCC Highways Department and Conservation Officer regarding the state of our verges, most especially in Middle Street and Church Street. Following site meetings plans will be submitted for sympathetic restoration of the verge and footpath in Middle Street. Thanks to John DeJardin for his work on this.
- Receiving the professional report on the safety of play equipment, which is under constant review. Thanks to Jon Roberts for keeping an eye on this.
- Noting the work done by volunteers to trim the allotment hedge and repair an entrance gate. Thanks to Linda Clark for coordinating these activities.
- Noting improved lines of communication with Anglian water concerning activities at the Water Treatment Works. Thanks to Susannah Fish for her initiatives on this front.
- Receiving progress reports from the Neighbourhood Plan steering group, and noting the excellent progress following the engagement of (grant-funded) professional consultants. An event is planned for the Spring to update the village on the draft plan. Thanks to Nicky Lyttelton for continuing to drive this forward.
Finally, a reminder that agendas and minutes of PC meetings are always posted on the PC noticeboard beside the bus shelter on Top Street, and on the PC website https://www.wingrutland-pc.gov.uk/. And Councillors are always happy to receive and relay the concerns of villagers.
The next scheduled meeting of the Parish Council will be on Weds 30th March in the Village Hall.
Ken Siddle (Chair, on behalf of Wing Parish Council)