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Sparsholt Parish Plan Newsletter No 5: Consultation Feedback

on Mon, 19/12/2011 - 11:34am

We Are Nearly There!

With your help, we have completed five of the seven steps towards developing our Parish Plan. The next step, producing the draft Parish Plan, commences in December. We intend to have a draft ready for public consultation early in the New Year. The final version is due for publication in March 2012.

Progress since Newsletter 3

You will recall that aspects of the questionnaire responses needed further examination, including:

  • The types and location of any housing schemes and the viability of installing mains drainage.
  • Traffic, consisting of snow and ice on the roads, overgrown hedges, drainage ditches, speeding on village approaches and no through roads.
  • Changes that would make it more likely that the Star remains the village’s pub.
  • The viability of setting up a local bulk oil/gas purchase scheme.
  • Keeping the Church as an important part of the Parish and community life.
  • The practicalities associated with creating a children’s play area in the village.

We proposed that work groups should take another look at these areas. The enthusiastic participation of over 30 volunteers meant that they quickly reached a conclusion.

Feedback Please!

This is your opportunity to give your reaction to the work groups’ proposals before we finalise the draft Parish Plan. Please pass any comments to:-

Jorge M on

or Andrew O on

Work Group Proposals

The following sections summarise each work group’s conclusions and achievements.


This work group proposed a policy that residents agreed at two well-attended public meetings.

“If any housing development is to take place in Sparsholt Parish, new houses will only be permitted as infilling; that is, normally not more that one or two dwellings filling a small gap between existing properties within the existing built-up area of a settlement. Housing development on any exceptional grounds outside or adjacent to the existing built-up area of a settlement within the parish will be opposed. Approved developments should either be conversions of existing buildings or new properties of up to four bedrooms and be designed to complement the character and appearance of the settlement.”

Traffic – Snow & Ice

This work group made the following arrangements for roads leading to the B4507 and B4001.

Lonsdale Estates and Tony C will clear their designated areas in the event of heavy snow.

Volunteers will salt/grit their designated areas in icy conditions or after snow clearance. The Parish Council will organise supplies of salt and grit.

Traffic – Hedges & Verges

A task force is to tackle the overgrown hedges in Eastmanton Lane and Westcot Lane. The work group is to organise an ivy clearance day and run a ragwort awareness campaign next summer.

The onus is on landowners and householders to keep their verges clear. The work group is to organise a public awareness campaign.

Traffic – Flooded Roads

This work group is identifying the landowner’s and OCC’s responsibilities for drains maintenance.

A team has been organised to maintain gullies and traps each year. The Parish Council is to arrange clearance of Golden Acre/Sparsholt Manor and continue their efforts to resolve the triangle at the junction of Churchway and Partridge Way.

Additional teams are needed for the brook and ditch in Watery Lane and at the bottom of West Street.

Traffic – Speeding on Village Approaches

Police are to enforce speed limits twice a year. The work group is to involve local children in organising a speeding awareness campaign. Discussions are in progress about lowering the speed limit on the B4507 to 50 mph.

The Star

This work group drew up the following statement to describe the community’s aspirations.

“Residents of the Sparsholt Parish intend to ensure that the Star develops into a vibrant, successful business. There is an overwhelming desire for the pub to remain open. A large number of people are prepared to support a purchaser who is committed to making a success of the pub. The local community would strongly oppose any planning application to redevelop the Star for residential use.”

The Parish Plan Steering Group intends to nominate the Star as a “vital community asset” under the forthcoming Localism Bill.

The work group are in contact with Punch Taverns to keep up to date with their plans for the Star.

Bulk Oil/Gas Purchase Scheme

Newsletter 4 described the outcome of this work group’s investigations. They recommended ORCC’s Cooperative after examining several options. It has 470 members, including residents of Childrey and Sparsholt. Annual membership is £20. Childrey’s coordinator agreed to take on new members from Sparsholt Parish. Some residents have already joined and taken their first delivery of oil at ORCC’s lower price.

The Church

We cannot progress this aspect of the Parish Plan until the new incumbent is appointed. In the meantime, the Churchwardens will use the information from the consultation process to brief the Parochial Church Council representative who is on the interview panel on the views of the Parish.

Children’s Play Area

Enquiries are in progress into the possibility of funding a children’s play area. This and practical considerations, for example locating a site are unlikely to be resolved in time for the Parish Plan. The work group is developing an action plan.

A Big Thank You to the Volunteers!

The following people gave their time, experience and local knowledge to help the work groups.

In alphabetic order: Matt A, John B, Bob B, Tony C, John C, Ruth C, Norman D, Wendy E , Dave E, Jade H, Rob H, Brian H, Barry J, Maia L, Ian L, Terry M, Paula M, Louise M, Graham M, Guy M, Margaret M,  John O’G, Chris O’G, Emma P, Pete R, Peter S, Ed V, Pete W, Eileen W, Glen W, Barbara W & Graham W.

Thanks also to the Parish Council who gave its support when work groups needed assistance.

Watch This Space!

For news of the meeting in early 2012 to discuss the draft Parish Plan and hold the £100 Prize Draw!

Submitted by Andrew O, Parish Plan Steering Group, 18/12/11