Thursday, 28 February 2013

New Emersons Green Town Council plans

Plans to create a new Emersons Green Town Council are now undergoing a second round of detailed consultation. As part of the proposals, 17 business properties to the south of the M4 which are currently in Westerleigh Parish would become part of the new Town Council area. No homes would change parish. A small area of land to the north of the M4 that is currently in Mangotsfield Parish would move to Westerleigh Parish.

You can find out more and make your comments online until 12th April 2013. You can also view the plans at Emersons Green Library. There will be drop in sessions at the library on the following dates for any residents who would like to ask questions:
  • Tuesday 12 March 2013 between 5pm and 7pm
  • Friday 15 March 2013 between 10am and 12noon
  • Saturday 16 March 2013 between 10am and 12noon

Tuesday, 26 February 2013

Solar energy plan for Says Court Farm

AEE Renewables are proposing to create a solar PV farm at Says Court Farm, off the Badminton Road between Coalpit Heath and Yate.

As part of their consultation with local people, they will be making a presentation at the Westerleigh Parish Council meeting at 7.15pm on Monday 4th March 2013 in Westerleigh Village Hall. If you can't attend the meeting or would like to find out more about the project beforehand, you can go to their website, Please also let your local Focus team know what you think about the proposals.

Monday, 25 February 2013

Bag a bargain at reuse shop

SITA, South Glos Council's waste contractors, have opened a reuse shop at the Thornbury SORT IT! centre. The Revive store sells secondhand homeware, furniture and clothing and will help reduce the amount of waste sent to landfill or for recycling.

The shop is open every day from 8am to 4.30pm. Free parking is available on site. No electrical items will be sold.

Friday, 22 February 2013

Have your say on waste strategy

As we reported in our recent Focuses, South Glos Council is asking local people to have their say on a new waste strategy. It aims to further reduce waste and increase recycling while also making significant savings.

 More ways to recycle

The new strategy proposes giving you more ways to recycle. It suggests extending the plastics recycling collection to include all plastics (except black items) rather than just plastic bottles. You would also be able to put small electrical items like irons in your green box.

SITA, who runs the recycling service for the council, has already started sending carpets, underlay, duvets, pillows and cushions from Sort It! centres for recycling as suggested in the strategy. If agreed, mattresses would be added to that list.

The strategy also suggests providing a better recycling service to residents living in flats.

Charges for garden waste

The strategy proposes charging for garden waste collection, like neighbouring authorities such as Bristol and Bath & North East Somerset. Not only would this help to make the big savings needed, it's also better for the environment if garden waste is composted in the garden, rather than transported elsewhere. Collecting the bins for people who opt into the service would be more efficient than visiting every house.

If you don't need the service, your green bin would be removed and you would not be charged. You would still be able to take your green waste to the Sort It! centre free of charge or you could compost your garden waste at home. If you do want garden waste collected but don't have a large garden, you could club together with neighbours to share the cost of a bin or the consultation asks your views on various options for single use bags for light users. We also made sure that those on certain benefits would get a 50% reduction.

Nobody wants to increase charging but the council's budget assumes that significant savings will be made. Simply stopping garden waste collections for the three winter months would only make a fraction of the savings possible through charging, leading to cuts in other services.

Have your say now

To have your say go to - the consultation runs until 20 May 2013.

Breast cancer in over-70s

Avon, Somerset and Wiltshire Cancer Services Network (ASWCS) is coordinating a campaign focusing on breast cancer in women over 70 years on behalf of the 6 primary care trusts/ CCGs in the Network (NHS Bristol, South Gloucestershire, Somerset, Wiltshire, North Somerset and B&NES). The campaign runs to 15th March 2013. Why not complete the short online survey hosted by the Care Forum to help understand local levels of awareness of breast cancer risks for women over 70 and raise awareness of the risks?

Thursday, 21 February 2013

Woodlands Farm - a date for your diary

It looks likely that the planning committee will visit Woodlands Farm on Friday 5th April. We won't know the approximate time until nearer the date but it will be in the morning or early afternoon. You might want to put this date in your diary now. The site visit gives members of the committee a chance to consider the planning issues on site but they will not make a decision on that day. That will happen at a meeting at a later date, yet to be decided. Watch this space for more information.

Wednesday, 13 February 2013

Time running out for Woodlands Farm comments

The deadline for letting South Gloucestershire Council know your views on the Woodlands Farm planning application is this Friday, 15th February. The link to view the plans and make your comments is here:

Saturday, 9 February 2013

Wind turbine application resubmitted

The application for a wind turbine south of the B4465 between Codrington and Westerleigh has been resubmitted. You can view the application and make comments on the South Glos website.

Friday, 8 February 2013

Charfield updates

The footpath that John O'Neill gained funding for at the Churchend junction of Charfield Hill will be delivered and completed in February. This piece of footway will assist mobility users and will be a road safety measure for the many pedestrians who circumnavigate the village using this route.

The Charfield sign and road signage as you enter the village from Wotton under Edge has been replaced. This area is outside the South Gloucestershire border and was completed in liaison with Gloucester Highways.

The area at Charfield Service Station on Wotton Road continues to be problem for pedestrians particularly school children. John has had this area assessed and hope to it take forward through the area forum to find a solution.

Thursday, 7 February 2013

Latest on Cromhall Post Office

Residents are eagerly awaiting the delivery of the new Post Office and affordable homes. It was anticipated that the work would be underway by now. However legal documentation that was anticipated would be completed by Christmas for the temporary site is still awaiting finalisation. As soon as this is complete the temporary Post Office will be on site and the construction of the new Post office will commence.
A planning application has been submitted for Cromhall Quarry at Rectory Lane, this is not to bring the quarry back in to use but to agree a restoration and implementation strategy. You can view the plans and comment online.

Wednesday, 6 February 2013

School admissions consultation

South Glos Council is currently asking for your views on its proposed schools admissions policy for 2014/15. This is that policy that will state how school places will be allocated for that year. Last year some local residents felt they were disadvantaged because of where they lived. You can view the proposed policy and comment online.

New bridge for Church Road

South Glos Highway Engineers have decided that Church Road bridge needs to be replaced.

Routine checks revealed structural defects to the bridge last year and a temporary 13T weight limit was imposed.

Replacing the bridge will take several weeks and the road will have to be closed. Lots of mains services cross the bridge and the local stone walling will have to be rebuilt.

The work is planned to take place over the peak summer holiday period in 2014.

Tuesday, 5 February 2013

Patient drop-off changes at BRI

There are currently changes to the patient drop off area between the Bristol Royal Infirmary and the Bristol Royal Hospital for Children. These temporary changes are to enable building work that is part of the redevelopment of the BRI to take place and they are expected to last until 8 March.

A staffed barrier is in place at the entrance to the hospitals and drivers will only be able to get through in an emergency or if dropping off a child with mobility difficulties. Drivers dropping off adults with mobility difficulties can use the council-controlled drop-off area in front of the BRI but, as this is a drop off area only, should avoid leaving cars unattended.

For those who need further assistance when dropping off a patient in this area, a phone number has been set up for them to call and a member of staff will give advice and call porters if necessary. The number is 07771 334 388. Wherever possible all patients and visitors for the BRI and the children's hospital should avoid driving into the hospital precinct and use nearby car parks, the free hospital bus or other bus services instead.

Orchard View work underway

In January work started on  the access track and five parking spaces at Orchard View, Falfield which will allow residents to access their properties rather than drive across the grassed area.

This project has been beset with problems and unfortunately a further hold up has occurred due to an error on the plans requiring a new planning application to be drawn up. John O'Neill hopes the track will be completed as soon as possible for the use of residents. An assurance has been given that the development of the two affordable homes on the garage site will not commence until the access track has been completed.

Westerleigh smell update

After residents, the Parish Council and Claire Young met Wessex Water on site in November, the water company took a number of actions. Odour loggers were installed at the discharge points from the Kidney Hill and abattoir pumping stations from 12th Dec to 8th Jan 2013. No hydrogen sulphide was detected at the former but the other logger failed, probably due to being 'drowned out' during high flows in the sewer following extremely heavy rainfall. Wessex will reinstall when the weather improves.

A smell complaint in Newman Close was traced to a cracked pipe and sump which was retaining sewage. This will be replaced. Wessex Water are currently investigating a sewage flooding incident in a garden in the village.

Nibley Lane to close for cleaning Friday

Nibley Lane is expected to close for cleaning from its junction with Badminton Road to its junction with Westerleigh Road on Friday 8th February 2013 from 9.30am until 2.30pm.

Monday, 4 February 2013

Police and Crime Plan roadshow

Police and Crime Commissioner Sue Mountstevens will be visiting South Gloucestershire on Thursday 7 February to find out what local people think should be in the Police and Crime Plan. She will be at the following locations:

10:00 – 12:00 Coniston Community Centre, Patchway

15:00 - 17:00 Hanham Library

You can take part in the consultation online at, pick up a printed survey from local libraries or call 01275 816377. The consultation closes on Friday 22 February 2013.

Wickwar Quarry

CEMEX have agreed to accept a further five year temporary planning application for this quarry. While the historic problems of noise and excessive traffic problems have largely dissipated, this measure combined with the quarry liaison group has given residents who live near the quarry a greater sense of security.

Core Strategy saga continues

The Government Inspector considering South Gloucestershire's planning blueprint for development up to 2027 will be holding another session of the Examination in Public on 7th March in the Kingswood Civic Centre, starting at 10am.

Although South Glos Council has accepted his requirement for 28,355 homes by 2027 it has objected strongly to his request for at least 8,493 of these to be available in the first 5 years. The council has, however, reluctantly put forward extra sites. The session in March would allow public discussion as the Inspector considers whether, if he insists on his requirement, these sites are better than the others considered at the inquiry last summer.

He has specifically mentioned sites at Thornbury, Yate/Chipping Sodbury, Severnside and the East and North Fringes of Bristol. We can't, however, be confident that this is good news for the objectors to the development of Woodlands Farm in Coalpit Heath! Watch this space for more news.

Don't forget - Woodlands Farm drop-in tonight

Tonight (Monday 4th February) Westerleigh Parish Council will be holding a drop-in for parishioners to view and comment on the plans for Woodlands Farm. The drop-in will start at 6.30pm in the Manor Hall and will be followed at 7.30pm by the meeting where they will make their comments on the plans.

Don't forget you can view and comment on the plans on the South Glos website.