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News & News Archive

Jewellery Burglaries

on Fri, 21/09/2018 - 8:33pm

Thames Valley Police has received reports of burglaries where houses have been targeted for high-value gold jewellery. Often, the gold is melted for cash or sold on.

Avoid giving burglars this opportunity by following some simple crime prevention tips:-

  • Please don’t keep your high value jewellery at home –  use a bank safety deposit box
  • If you have to keep your jewellery at home, then please invest in a home safe suitable for protecting your jewellery, your insurance company will provide advice as to which type and grade of safe best suits your needs
  • Keep an inventory of your jewellery. This can be done in a paper version or online with companies such as Immobilise. For more information go to include identifying marks, value, and purchase date
  • Photograph your jewellery. Place your jewellery against a plain background with a ruler next to it to give an idea of size
  • Check your home insurance to ensure that it covers keeping high-value jewellery at home
  • Make sure your home is kept secure at all times – windows/ door locks, timers that switch lights on when going out Set your house alarm if you have one 
  • As with other valuables, do not leave jewellery on display
  • Use forensic marking to identify your jewellery. Information on forensic marking can be found on

For more information about what officers are doing to prevent crime in your area, or to speak to your Neighbourhood Policing Team for more information, please call 101. You can also follow them on:

From a TVP email received 18/9/18

Watch out for these fake TV Licensing emails

on Fri, 21/09/2018 - 8:31pm

We’ve seen a sharp increase in reports about fake TV Licensing emails claiming to offer refunds. The emails state that the refund cannot be processed due to “invalid account details”. The links provided in the emails lead to phishing websites designed to steal personal and financial details.

Always question unsolicited requests for your personal or financial information in case it’s a scam. Never automatically click on a link in an unexpected email or text.

From a TVP email received 21/9/18

Councillor Yvonne Constance's Summer 2018 Report for Parish Councils

on Fri, 21/09/2018 - 7:57pm

County Council has been very busy during the summer with many decisions to report:


  • Potholes have been repaired at new rate ; winter damage resulted in 8,000 reports to Fix My Street in Jan/Feb and Highways faced 30,000 defects  and by start of Q1 (April) Highways faced 30,000 defects. 20,000 had been repaired by end of Q1 after introducing 2 new teams to repair (1 extra in North and 1 in South) and purchasing 1 additional Dragon Patcher to operate 2 1/2 in the county.  Hope you have all noticed how many potholes have been done, and appreciate the better roads in the neighbourhood
  • County agreed  to bring forward £10million from capital spend for next year to start a major programme or surface dressing/ resurfacing/ drainage, cutting vegetation and  bridge repairs
  • County has agreed also a new programme to borrow £120million (internal borrowing) over 5 years from 2019/20 to invest in improving the county’s  assets : £80 million will be spent on roads, footways, bridges and street lights etc.,and £40 million on properties, especially schools.  This is a new initiative to invest in our assets,  will usie the ‘growth dividend’ from increase in Council Tax revenue from the growth in the number of houses.  County has recognised the importance of our roads and buildings to the residents and made a bold decision to bring forward works to get ahead of endless short-term repairs , to invest in better standard of  our highways and properties.  This programme will be flexible, with plans to draw down borrowing only as the growth dividend is available to afford the borrowing.


  • Oxfordshire Environment Partnership (with the District Councils) is promoting the use of cloth nappies aiming to reduce the £1 million costs to incinerate them at Ardley.  The Councils are offering free trials of cloth nappies, which are lighter, softer, better designed to be more consumer friendly.
  • OEP is working to recommend to the Growth Board a requirement for developers to build new houses to higher standard of Energy Efficiency


Is progressing with set up of Advisory Sub Group  to structure and spend the £215 million Gov grant available for infrastructure and affordable housing by 2031 if we deliver 100,000 new houses in Oxfordshire.  This was agreed in the spring with County and  all District Councils and the City in an initiative the first of its kind in the country to build infrastructure for the houses

  • A Joint Strategic Spatial Plan will be agreed by the Districts and City to shape the delivery of housing in the County up to 2050 : the first statement to scope and structure the issues has just been agreed by County : geography, decision-making structures, communication plans have been presented – Parish Councils will be in comms schedule
  • The Affordable Housiing sub-group has shaped its plan and met for the first time last week in Oxford
  • The Infrastructure sub-group will meet in near future


  • Highways England has announced its first decision about the corridor for this new road : they will build it east or west of Oxford and will go to full consultation on the possible routes in 2019 with decision in 2020 : OCC continues to press for a route that delivers relief to the A34


  • County has agreed to progress with a transformation of the County’s operations to digitalise access to services and focus more on service delivery and less on the admin in the back office.  This will be a 3-5 year programme, designed to do things differently and achieve savings of at least £33 million ( to achieve the savings still required in the medium term) and possible further savings of £20 million.  We intend to deliver better services with 600-900 fewer staff, recognising that staff turnover is about 650 every year, so there will be few redundancies


I remind Parish Councils that I have a  County community fund for ‘priorities’ in my Division, and have offered each PC the opportunity to bid for projects costing £2000 to £2500, which must be supported by fully costed quotations and agreed by me before submission to County Hall.  Bids seems slow, so if you have a project you want considered, please get an application presented by end October (ideally).  So far I have approved bids for contributions to repair a village hall roof; a  new bus shelter; and expect bids for improvements to a belisha beacon; tarring a sports field for older children; repairing play equipment.  Please think about making an application – I would like to spend my fund in my Division and not surrender it again to another Cllr!


I have focused much time and energy with Fyfield&Tubney Parish Council at the Examination in Public of LPP2 in July to oppose Vale’s allocation of 600 more houses east of Kingston Bagpuize (in fact in F&T parish!).  600 more houses would impose unacceptable congestion on A420 and Frilford Lights on A338, and we made our case that the development was not needed, not viable and not deliverable.  We await his decision.

Yvonne Constance

Neighbourhood Police Update - September 2018

on Fri, 14/09/2018 - 3:14pm

You said we did:

Anti-social behaviour (ASB): You have reported an increase in (ASB) in Faringdon town. We have been in contact with the Community Safety Partnership Team at the Vale District Council and we have increased our patrols in the area that you have reported. We have adopted a zero tolerance with individuals involved and one male has been arrested for related offences in the town.

Rural crime:

You have reported a large increase in rural crime offences including hare coursing and theft/burglary offences. We have supported our local landowners and gamekeepers with targeted patrols and shift changes to coincide with the typical offence times. We have seized two hare coursing dogs and provided crime prevention advice and surveys to victims in the area.

Thefts from vehicles:

You have reported an increase in thefts from vehicles parked at our local beauty spot car parks. We have carried out dedicated patrols to identify vehicles involved and also to provide visibility to the public to increase reassurance. We have now identified possible vehicles involved and work is ongoing to target them and will be talking with our local National Trust Rangers regularly to tackle the problem.

Witness appeal

Approx £30,000 of garden machinery and tools were stolen from Haremore Farm, Faringdon in the early hours on 29TH AUGUST 2018 involving a white van. The offenders were disturbed and the offending vehicle sustained damage after colliding with a vehicle parked at the location with one of the rear doors hanging off by one hinge. Did you see any suspicious vehicles in the area or perhaps travelling the A420 between 1am and 2am on 29TH August 2018? Please call 101 if you have any information.

Crime prevention advice

Around 30sq metres of lead was stolen from the village Church in Sparsholt during August. This type of offence in the past usually involves a series of church locations targeted over a short period. Please ensure any suspicious activity is reported on 999 if happening at the time. Be vigilant and ensure that regular checks are completed. Look into protecting your churches and lead with Smart Water.

What the neighbourhood team have been doing:

The Faringdon Neighbourhood Police Team conducted a warrant at a location in Great Coxwell with support from our surrounding Neighbourhood Teams. The aim of the warrant was to recover stolen property and vehicles being stored at the location. During the warrant, we located a stolen Land Rover Defender from the Gloucestershire area, a stolen motorbike from the Bourton area, a stolen caravan and a large amount of red diesel suspected to be stolen from local locations including combine harvesters. This was after the team had already recovered another stolen Land Rover Defender the week before taken from the Wiltshire area.

Good News

After last month’s update appealing for information to locate Juan Clarke, he was located and arrested out of force area. He has been charged with harassment with fear of violence and subsequently recalled to prison.

Contacting us and reporting crimes online

Did you know that you can now get in touch with us online as well as by calling 101? Please visit where you can:

  • Provide more information or request an update on a crime report
  • Tell us if you recognise a face or description from one of our witness appeals
  • Contact an officer or department directly, for example our Fixed Penalty Support Unit. This also helps you reach an officer or PCSO who may be working unsociable hours.

You can also use our new online reporting form on our Website to report any type of crime, traffic collisions involving an injury, a missing person and anti-social behaviour. If you click on the REPORT link it opens up a form which takes you through all the questions that you would be asked if you called 101 and is picked up by our dedicated team in the Contact Centre.

Knife surrender bin at Abingdon Police Station

Operation Sceptre is a campaign to raise awareness of knife crime that is running from the 18th – 25th September. Thames Valley Police will be visiting some of the schools in the area to talk to the children about the dangers of knives. We are placing a surrender bin at the front counter at Abingdon police station during this week where you can safely dispose of any unwanted knives.

TVP South and Vale Twitter

Please remember the best place to find out what the Faringdon Neighbourhood team are up to is always on Twitter: @TVPSouthandVale (opens new window) and using the #Faringdon.

Thames Valley Alert

Receive free local crime alerts and crime prevention advice by registering at (opens new window) today. This allows anyone who signs up to choose what updates they receive and how they would like to receive it. A new option includes receiving information via text but more traditional landline and email messages are still available. You can also filter the updates you receive by specifying the priority level of the messages you receive.

Contact us

If you want any advice or would like to contact the neighbourhood team you can call us on the police non emergency number 101 (or 01865-841148 if 101 doesn't work for you) but if your call is an emergency then dial 999.   You can also contact us via email: - [email protected] please note this email address cannot be used to contact Thames Valley Police to report crimes or for any urgent matters. To view information on your neighbourhood team visit the Thames Valley Police website at: Thames Valley Police Twitter account is kept up to date with what we are up to; please follow us @TVPSouthandVale. (opens new window)

To report local problems such as graffiti, fly tipping, pot holes and

broken street lights please visit

Find out more here:-

Feel unsafe in a pub? Ask bar staff for 'Angela' to get help

on Fri, 14/09/2018 - 8:19am

'Ask for Angela', the scheme designed to help those at risk of abuse in a pub or bar, is now available in Wantage.

If someone feels uncomfortable in a licensed venue they can go to the bar and ask; “Is Angela in?”. Staff will then offer discrete help.

The scheme is particularly aimed at those who are on a date with someone they have only just met online, or via a dating app, who then doesn’t turn out quite as they expected.

Participating venues can be recognised by a blue sticker in their window and posters displayed in bar and toilet areas. 

The ‘Ask Angela’ campaign is being rolled out across towns in the Vale of White Horse and South Oxfordshire summer 2018.  The scheme is supported by local Pubwatch members and the South and Vale Community Safety Partnership.

If you manage or own a licensed venue and would like to join the ‘Ask for Angela’ scheme please email: [email protected]

Corridor B chosen by Government for the Oxford to Cambridge Expressway

on Thu, 13/09/2018 - 7:26pm

A plan to link together fast-growing technology hotspots took a further step closer to fruition today (12 September 2018) as Roads Minister Jesse Norman announced the chosen central corridor for the Oxford to Cambridge Expressway.

After detailed scrutiny and review by Highways England, of the 3 options A, B and C, Corridor B was judged to offer greater benefits to the region – outperforming the other options by providing better links to jobs, education, leisure and health services.

The expressway, with options to pass either west or east of Oxford, is also expected to take up to 40 minutes off the journey between the A34 south of Oxford and the M1.

Building the new link close to the east/west rail link will also offer more options for the commercial development of up to 1 million new homes, in line with proposals by the National Infrastructure Commission, and encourage more people to travel by train rather than by cars.

Roads Minister Jesse Norman said:

  • The government is taking the big decisions on infrastructure, working to maximise growth and productivity across the UK.
  • England’s economic heartland, as it has been called, already plays a crucial role in powering the UK’s growth, science and innovation, but there is no single route to connect Oxford and Cambridge.
  • This expressway will enhance both transport connectivity and growth across the region for the benefit of the UK as a whole.

A full public consultation will be held next year, in which residents and businesses in and around the corridor will have their say on more detailed designs for the route.

From a news item on the website; see the original <here>.

Sparsholt Parish Council - Proposed Action on Speed Limits on the B4507

on Wed, 12/09/2018 - 4:45pm

Proposed Action on Speed Limits on the B4507 between Ashbury and Wantage

Currently, on this section of highway, national speed limits i.e. 60mph, apply.  There are no other speed limits between Ashbury and Wantage.  Alternative limited speeds are usually used to improve safety in sections recognised where speed contributes to an unacceptable accident risk and as such generally requires evidence of a safety hazard such as views of residents in the vicinity, or a police accident record. 

There are records of traffic incidents along this section of road, including fatalities. While it is not proven that speed was the major factor in these, it is well known that some vehicles travel at excessive speed on the road.   The volume of traffic on this road is increasing, with the growth in traffic generally, and with significant housing development in the area.  This  road is also characterised by side turnings with traffic leaving and joining this road.        

There are several approaches to be considered to improve the management of speeds on this section:

Option 1:

Request the Highway Authority (OCC) to create a traffic regulation Order (TRO) which requires drivers to keep their speed below the defined limit. This can work for those drivers who respect the limit, and where the Police are seen and known to enforce the limit.  Unfortunately, with declining budgets, police speed enforcement is becoming less and less effective, and we are increasingly dependent on drivers believing that the limits are worth respecting.  It is not considered appropriate to make such an order in the section between Ashbury and Wantage.

Option 2:

An alternative is to request OCC to implement advisory speed limits; these are used on a stretch of road that is potentially hazardous and they recommend to drivers a safe maximum driving speed. They are marked on site by limit signs, with repeater signs at a maximum distance between limit signs. The location of an advisory maximum speed limit sign varies, but can often be seen on bends. As the advisory speed limit is not contained within a red ring, it is the motorists’ choice of whether they obey the advised speed limit or not, providing they do not exceed the maximum regulatory speed limit.

Obviously, motorists should take weather conditions, road and traffic conditions and the severity of the potential hazard into account to decide on an appropriate speed at which to drive in any section of road.

Option 3:

Vehicle Activated Signs (VAS) are the electronic displays that flash up the speed limit, or the speed of the approaching vehicle.  The signs are usually activated at a pre-set trigger speed by the approach of a vehicle. They alert only those who are driving above the speed limit or, if used on an approach to a hazard, too fast for the road conditions.

These signs are effective in reducing speed, particularly of fast drivers who contribute disproportionately to the accident risk.  Elsewhere, signs are currently operating at some accident sites with externally funded signs at sites where there may not be a casualty history but there is a high degree of non-compliance with the speed limit. Such signs would work at particularly dangerous sites such as at Britchombe Farm camping site where members of the public walk openly in the carriageway.  It is suggested that the operators of this camping site should be approached with a view to funding 2 VAS signs to reduce speeds, one in each direction.

Where there is no, or minimal, casualty history but there is evidence to show a higher degree of non-compliance with the speed limit, a town or parish council can fund VAS as a low-cost accident prevention measure. On the other hand, these signs are quite expensive to procure, install and maintain.  There is also evidence that drivers become blasé about such signs and their effectiveness reduces quite rapidly with time.

In other council areas, speed monitoring patrols have been implemented using local members of the public. These people get suitable equipment on loan from the police, are trained by the police officers and operate under strict rules laid down by the police.  Keepers of vehicles recorded as speeding using the equipment are then written to by the police with evidence of this speeding.  It is understood that repeat “offenders” get a visit from the police officer.


Speed limits which change frequently along one or more sections of road tend to reduce drivers’ attention to them; it is best to have a consistent level of speed control over as wide an area as possible.  On the rural roads in our vicinity, where one would reasonably expect consistent speed limits, we have sections that are 50mph and others which are 60mph. It is suggested that the road which is being considered here should have a consistent limit from the outskirts of Ashbury to the boundary of Wantage, the limit should be consistent with others in the locality eg the A417 to Faringdon, and that limit should be 50mph.  That would have the best chance of being observed by drivers.

Proposed Action:

It is suggested that the Parish Council should write to our local OCC Member and to the Highways division of OCC and propose that:

  1. A formal consultation be undertaken in the villages along this section of road, with a view to introducing speed control measures to restrict speeds to 50mph along the entire length of the road.
  2. VAS be implemented at the camping site (to be funded by the site operators);
  3. Warning signs be placed at danger locations, such as at the foot of the White Horse Hill, to warn drivers travelling in both directions, of the hazard ahead.
  4. Thames Valley Police be requested to carry out regular speed enforcement checks at peak traffic times.
  5. The Parish Council should consider offering to contribute to the cost of the agreed scheme.

Sparsholt Parish Council

June 2018

St John the Baptist Kingston Lisle - Restoration Update No.24

on Tue, 11/09/2018 - 2:52pm

News from St John the Baptist Kingston Lisle

Dear Kingston Lisle Church Restoration Supporter

Please find attached our 24th restoration update, as we approach the end of our project.

After nearly five years of planning, our organ is now under construction in our organ builder David Stalley’s Village Workshop in Essex. It’s a restored, enhanced and recased Walker Type C electric action instrument which was originally in a church in London. It’s being configured specifically for the small space and budget available. We have less than £5,000 to raise of the £33,000 cost (a brand new one would be well over £100,000). We aim to have the organ installed well in time for Christmas and to hold an opening recital for all our wonderful supporters. It will then be dedicated by the Rt Revd Colin Fletcher, Bishop of Dorchester, at a special service on Mothering Sunday, 31st March 2019.

Thanks again for your support

Arthur & Angus

North Wessex Downs AONB – Management Plan Consultation - Have your say

on Tue, 11/09/2018 - 12:50pm

The future of the North Wessex Downs AONB is protected and enhanced through an AONB Management Plan, which is a legal document adopted by all the local authorities in which the AONB sits.

The Management Plan is reviewed and updated every five years. The current Plan runs until next year and earlier this year, the organisation embarked on the Review process.

As part of this task, they have launched a public consultation to gather views on the draft Management Plan to cover the period 2019-24. The 12 week consultation period lasts until Friday 23rd November 2018. 

The Consultation draft and associated documents can be found and downloaded from the Management Plan Review webpage:

With thanks to Simon J, for the heads-up.

Wildwood Kitchen - Film Club Listings including Saturday Kids & Sunday film clubs

on Tue, 11/09/2018 - 11:05am

Updated 11/9/18

Current listings for the cinema room at Wildwood Kitchen in Wantage.

A movie and a three course meal from their set menu (see below) costs £19.95 per person or £9.95 for children (for children's films), which includes a kids menu, popcorn and a drink. 

The cinema room is also available for private hire. It seats approximately 35 people in comfort and is available for parties & functions, with costs from £150. For further details contact Wildwood Kitchen:-

Current films:-

For full details, including meal & film times, check Wildwood <here>


  • 11/9/18 - 13/9/18 & 15/9/18 - Game Night
  • 12/9/18 - Jurassic Park
  • 15/9/18 - The Lego Movie
  • 18/9/18, 20/9/18 & 22/9/18 - Isle of Dogs
  • 19/9/18 - The Sound of Music
  • 22/9/18 - Beauty & the Beast
  • 25/9/18, 27/9/18 & 29/9/18 - Book Club
  • 26/9/18 - Gone with the Wind
  • 29/9/18 - Mary & the Witches Flower


  • 2/10/18, 4/10/18 & 6/10/18 - I Feel Pretty
  • 3/10/18 - Titanic
  • 6/10/18 - Hotel Transylvania
  • 9/10/18, 11/10/18 & 13/10/18 - A Quiet Place
  • 10/10/18 - The Babadook
  • 13/10/18 - Coraline
  • 16/10/18 - Shaun of the Dead
  • 17/10/18 - Ghostbusters
  • 18/10/18 & 20/10/18 - Hereditary
  • 20/10/18 - Paranorman
  • 23/10/18 - Final Destination
  • 24/10/18 - Saw
  • 25/10/18 & 27/10/18 - Get Out
  • 27/10/18 - Hotel Transylvania 3
  • 29/10/18 - The Shining
  • 31/10/18 - Scream