Agenda and minutes

Tidworth Area Board - Monday 4 September 2023 7.00 pm

Venue: Memorial Hall, Andover Rd, Ludgershall, Wiltshire, SP11 9LZ

Contact: Max Hirst 

No. Item


Welcome and Introductions

The Chairman will welcome everyone to the meeting and introduce those present.


The Chairman welcomed everyone to the meeting of the Tidworth Area Board.


Apologies for Absence

To receive any apologies for absence.


Apologies for absence were received from:


Cllr Mark Connolly

Louisa Young


Declarations of Interest

To receive any declarations of disclosable interests or dispensations granted by the Standards Committee.



There were no declarations of interest.



To confirm the minutes of the meeting held on 10 July 2023.

Supporting documents:



The minutes of the previous meeting on 10 July 2023 were agreed as a correct record and signed by the Chairman.



Chairman's Announcements

The Chairman will give an update on outcomes and actions arising from

previous meetings of the Area Board:


·       Wiltshire Local Plan Review

Supporting documents:


The chairman referenced an information notice highlighting the Wiltshire Local Plan Review, including an upcoming consultation period in which members of the public would be able to give their views on the Local Plan.


The full information note can be found in the agenda pack.


Information Items

The Board is asked to note the following Information items:


·       BSW Together

·       Healthwatch Wiltshire

·       Community First

·       Update on the Council’s Activity and Progress on the Climate Emergency (

·       PCC’s Across the South-West launch new Rural Crime Survey and Quarterly Newsletter

·       Wiltshire AGE UK Newsletter

Supporting documents:


The following items included in the agenda pack were noted:


·       BSW Together

·       Healthwatch Wiltshire

·       Community First

·       Update on the Council’s Activity and Progress on the Climate

Emergency (

·       PCC’s Across the South-West launch new Rural Crime Survey and

Quarterly Newsletter

·       Wiltshire AGE UK Newsletter


Partner Updates

To receive any updates from partner organisations:


-       Wiltshire Police – Insp Ricky Lee

-       Dorset and Wiltshire Fire & Rescue Service – Station Manager Simon Todd

-       Healthwatch

-       Parish Councils

-       MOD


Supporting documents:


Wiltshire Police – Inspector Ricky Lee


A slight increase in antisocial behaviour was observed during the summer, however overall crime has reduced. The number of PCSOs in the area remains at 50% of capacity, which reflects the national picture.


Communications with youth groups and schools had taken place and there had been work with a local campaign against violence against women and girls. Work with local farmers to tackle rural crime and traveller incursions has continued, and encouragement was given to attendees to be vigilant regarding access to their open spaces.


The local Speedwatch group was highlighted as very successful and well equipped, and their assistance was praised.


MOD – Lt Col Rupert Whitelegge.


Praised the work of the Fire Service for their help when a building locally known as “The Stables” set fire. It was stated that the building will be restored and returned to use.


The 25 units and 12,000 troops of Tidworth Garrison was designated as mostly deployed.


Town and Parish Councils


Ludgershall – New businesses had been opened meaning the high street have a complete set of shops. An upgrade to the skate park had been initiated including adding gym equipment. A new flagpole had been fitted to the local war memorial.


Tidworth – The written update was noted, which can be found in the agenda pack.


Everleigh – The written update was noted, which can be found in the agenda pack.


Chute – Hosted a successful local fair and flower and vegetable show. The local pavilion is in the process of being refurbished. Chute are also looking for football teams to play in the local area. Cllr Chris Williams (Chair) noted the loss of bus services in the area and stated that Wiltshire Council were aware of the situation and working on a solution.


Ludgershall Memorial Hall noted an improvement in the level of bookings and are happy with progress since the COVID Pandemic.


Police and Crime Commissioner

Tidworth Area Board is pleased to welcome the Police & Crime Commissioner Philip Wilkinson OBE.


The board welcomed the Police and Crime Commissioner Philip Wilkinson OBE, who gave a verbal presentation.


Points to note:


The Police and Crime Commissioner had been in post for 2 years and described his main aim as to challenge the Wiltshire Police Force to perform better than it had been in order to reach the level it should be.


Wiltshire’s Police Force was described as having some fantastic police officers, which unfortunately had not been given the support and resources needed.


Four priorities were stated as central to the work of the PCC and his office:


• A more effective and efficient Police Force, including an improvement to response times.


• A reduction in violent crimes, specifically sexual crimes which has improved from a 2% conviction rate to over 11%, with the expectation that this figure will continue to improve. Drug crimes have also been prioritised through Operation Scorpion to focus on specific targets committing drug crimes. Wiltshire Council is now the top Force in county line drug disruption.


• Tackling crimes highlighted by the community, specifically road safety. Community Speedwatch was highlighted as really important to this priority and enforcement statistics had massively improved through ticketing and other enforcement actions. Antisocial behaviour was also highlighted as a community priority.


• Rural Crime. The local Rural Crime Unit had been given better equipment in the form of drones and night vision to better tackle specifically organised crime gangs committing rural crimes against farmers. Operation Ragwort was highlighted as a specific initiative to tackle this.



The board also welcomed the Chief Constable, Catherine Roper, who gave a verbal presentation.


Points to note:


The Chief Constable had been in post 6 months and described policing in Wiltshire as a situation where fantastic staff had earned her trust and confidence, however, operational issues had led to the force being graded poorly and placed in special measures. This was noted as largely being due to not recognising vulnerable persons and their challenges. Although Wiltshire is the safest county in the country, when incidents had occurred the response was not adequate.


The Chief Constable was very conscious that the foundations of Wiltshire Police needed to be rebuilt, and that as trust and confidence in the force had declined the morale within the force had declined as a result.


Rebuilding the fundamentals of Wiltshire Police would lead to being brought out of special measures. This included work already underway on the business-as-usual delivery plan, restructuring the senior management and performance frameworks and refocusing crime-tackling priorities.


Other areas of improvement included:


• Visibility on the roads to deter criminals.


• Recruitment activities, with emphasis given to opportunities for those in a gap year.


• The Evolve programme, allowing those most involved in day-to-day activity to give their views on where improvements can be made.


• Auditing and inspections, ensuring progress had been made through regular reports to the PCC. Every 6 months the Chief Constable and PCC attend Whitehall to face numerous questions and explain how improvements  ...  view the full minutes text for item 47.


Grant Application and Planting Support Team (GAPS)

To receive a presentation from Caroline Roofe (Woodland Officer) about Wiltshire Council’s new GAPS Team.

Supporting documents:


Caroline Roofe (Woodland Officer) gave a presentation about Wiltshire Council’s new GAPS Team.


The PowerPoint is included in the minutes.


The Main Points covered included:


·       UK Climate Targets and Wiltshire’s woodland cover and commitment to planting trees.

·       The GAPs Team and how it provides support to Schools, Community Groups, Parish Councils and Farmers.

·       Funding Options for those wanting to get involved.

·       The Tree Warden Scheme and the work they do to look after and maintain trees in their respective areas across the county.



Detached Youth Work Project

To receive an update from Graeme Morrison the Strategic Engagement & Partnership Manager (SEPM) on the proposed Detached Youth Work Project in Tidworth and Ludgershall.

Supporting documents:


Graeme Morrison, the Strategic Engagement & Partnership Manager (SEPM) gave an update on the proposed Detached Youth Work Project in Tidworth and Ludgershall.


The PowerPoint is included in the minutes.


Tidworth Town Council representatives highlighted the magnet the local skate park was proving to be as an almost informal youth club. It was suggested that a local youth worker operating nearby would allow support and contact to be given.


Cllr Paul Oatway referred to a “Blue Bus” initiative that is a mobile youth centre travelling to rural areas providing activities and food.


A point was made about more active contact and support with young people being needed to increase confidence among them that they are being thought about and supported.



Area Board Priority Update

To receive an update on the Area Board’s priority areas.




Cllr Christopher Williams, Chairman, updated the Board that Tidworth Leisure Centre has numerous projects being undertaken to improve and modernise the building and he had visited to be shown current work relating to the reception area.



Area Board Funding

To note the remaining budgets and to consider any applications for

funding, as detailed in the attached report and summarised below:


Officer: Graeme Morrison, Strategic Engagement & Partnerships




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Tidworth Community Area Board Applied for £5,000 towards their Detached Youth Work in the Community Area.


Proposed by Cllr Christopher Williams and Seconded by Cllr Tony Pickernell it was:



To award Tidworth Community Area Board £5,000 towards their Detached Youth Work.

Reason – The application met the Community Area Grants Criteria 2023/24.



Urgent items

Any other items of business which the Chairman agrees to consider as a matter of urgency.


There were no urgent items.


Date of Next Meeting

The next meeting of the Tidworth Area Board will be on 13 November 2023.



The next meeting of the Tidworth Area Board will be held on 13 November 2023.