Agenda and minutes

Stonehenge Area Board - Thursday 8 June 2023 6.30 pm

Venue: Durrington Village Hall, High St, Durrington, Salisbury SP4 8AD

Contact: Tara Hunt  Email:

Note No. Item



Election of Chairman 2023/24

To elect a Chairman for the forthcoming year.


The process to be followed can be seen in the attached document.

Supporting documents:


On the nomination of Cllr Ian Blair-Pilling, seconded by Cllr Monica Devendran, it was,




To elect Cllr Graham Wright as Chairman for the forthcoming year.



Election of Vice-Chairman for 2023/34

To elect a Vice-Chairman for the forthcoming year.


On the nomination of Cllr Graham Wright, seconded by Cllr Mark Verbinnen it was,




To appoint Cllr Robert Yuill as Vice-Chairman for the forthcoming year.



Welcome and Introductions

To welcome those present to the meeting.


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


At the Chairman’s invitation, the Councillors of the Area Board introduced themselves.


Apologies for Absence

To receive any apologies for the meeting.


There were no apologies for absence from Area Board councillors, however Cllr Blair-Pilling stated that he would need to leave the meeting early.


Apologies were received from the following regular attendees:


·       Netheravon Parish Council

·       Julian Glyn-Owen, Chairman, Berwick St James Parish Meeting

·       Chris Wood, DWFRS, District Commander South East Wiltshire, who was being represented at the meeting by DWFRS Group Manager Jim Weston.





To approve and sign as a correct record the minutes of the meeting held on 30 March 2023.

Supporting documents:


The minutes of the last meeting were presented.


It was;




The minutes of the meeting held on 30 March 2023 were agreed as a correct record and signed by the Chairman.


Declarations of Interest

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


In relation to Item 12 Cllr Mark Verbinnen declared an Other Registerable Interest (ORI) in relation to the Buzz Action Youth Grant. As set out in the Code of Conduct, Cllr Mark Verbinnen made a statement as a member of public and remained for discussion. He did not take part in the vote on the item.




Chairman's Announcements

To receive the following announcements and information items through the Chairman:


·       Healthwatch Wiltshire

·       BSW Together (Integrated Care System)

·       Community First

·       Cost of Living update

·       Highways – future event being planned

Supporting documents:


The Chairman referred the meeting to the written information items in the agenda.


In addition, the Chairman announced an additional agenda item, from the Wiltshire Council Woodland Team on Grant Application and Planting Support, this item would be taken following item 9.


Furthermore, the Chairman announced additional informal engagement events which would focus on:


·       Roads, Speeding and the Wiltshire Council Resurfacing Schedule 

·       Parishes and Your Priorities  

·       Reward & Recognition Event

·       Our Environment 


It was hoped that the first event would be the parishes and priorities event and details would follow.



Open Floor, including Parish and Partner Updates

Open floor session with updates from partners, parishes and free flow discussion.


Supporting documents:


Partners gave the following updates:


·       Wiltshire Police

Inspector Ricky Lee highlighted the written report in the agenda supplement. Crime was on a general downward trend although the reasons for that were not currently known. During spring and summer there tended to be incursions on to private land by the travelling community. This had occurred recently in Ludgershall, notices to move on were served in a short period of time. Landowners were advised to be aware of the issue and to ‘harden up’ boundaries and accesses by the using ditches, gates, tree stumps or similar. There was likely to be an increase in unlicensed music events, known as ‘raves’. The Stonehenge tunnel project was also causing some problems both in relation to protestors and the large influx of related workforces that would bring a different economy and community to the area. In addition, the solstice was coming up which was a large operation for the police.


Various attendees thanked the police for their work. Cllr Mark Verbinnen highlighted a traveller incursion onto private land in Bulford, he emailed the Inspector at 10pm, notice was served the next day and the travellers had left within 24 hours. Another attendee highlighted a location in Dorset where trees had been planted by landowners to deter incursions and suggested that could be an option. The Inspector highlighted that we had to embrace all different types of cultures, however, these situations did cause issues.


Issues regarding parking on pavements in estates in Amesbury were raised and the local council and the police were going to work together to try to deter that from happening.


·       Dorset and Wiltshire Fire and Rescue Service

Jim Weston, Group Manager gave an update and highlighted the report in the agenda supplement. It was a busy time for the team, with the risk of wildfires. The service were recruiting and it was highlighted that Amesbury was an on call station, crewed by people who were on alert and came in as required. Further information on becoming an On Call Firefighter could be found at or by calling 01722 691444. A national campaign on biker safety was being promoted and details could be found at


In response to a question it was confirmed that the service still undertook fire safety checks and the Safe and Well scheme was highlighted and details could be found at 


In response to further questions, it was confirmed that the Amesbury Fire Station was an on demand station at present, which had been running at approximately 53% availability. Many of the crew also had day time jobs and it was hard to recruit to the role, so it was a difficult situation. There were plans in place for Amesbury and a duty system was to be introduced, where full time fire fighters would crew the station during the day and overnight on call crews would be available. It was hoped this would be in place from the new year onwards.


Open Floor


Cllr  ...  view the full minutes text for item 22.



Emergency Contact Hubs

To receive a presentation from Wiltshire Council officers, Camella Town and Chris Manuel on Emergency Contact Hubs and their purpose.


Camella Town, National Power Outage Project Officer, and Chris Manuel, Community Resilience Lead Officer, delivered a verbal presentation on the proposal of Emergency Contact Hubs (ECHs) and their purpose, and helping resilience in the community.


The idea of ECHs was introduced and explained as being inspired by similar endeavours in New Zealand where such places were created for emergency purposes to help residents experiencing urgent issues such as power outages or severe flooding. Officers noted that this idea would build on existing community spirit and resilience arrangements in recognised community locations and would be community led, driven and owned. As such, officers would not be attempting to enforce a detailed structure and instead would look to volunteers to organise how they saw best but would be there to provide support and advice if needed.


Community Hubs could be locations such as village halls, pubs, community centres and so on. Residents could go there for information or help, and information could be fed up and down between communities and multi-agency partners such as the police.


The introduction of the hubs would be promoted widely on various media formats through Wiltshire Council to ensure that residents would know the locations of the sites alongside any other necessary information. It was confirmed that the promotions would be continually advertised to ensure that the message reaches as many members of the public as possible.


Attendees were encouraged to get in touch with Camella through the following email address if they wanted any further details:


The Chairman thanked officers for their presentation on behalf on the Board and attendees.


Grant Application and Planting Support


Naomi Styles, Woodland Officer, gave a presentation to the Area Board. It was stated that due to the climate emergency the UK government had introduced targets which were detailed as:


·       The UK needed 30,000 hectares of trees/yr over the next 30 years (2.25 billion trees assuming 1 tree sapling/4m sq, and

·       National Parks and AONB’s must play a role in meeting this target whilst appreciating the need for sensitive planning.

·       For Wiltshire, this target = 435 ha of woodland/yr for the next 30 years (>1 million trees / an area of woodland the size of Devizes each year)

·       40% of Wiltshire’s landscape = AONB, national park or historic sites

·       Large-scale tree planting needed to be carefully considered and sensitively introduced

·       Woodland planting 2ha> requires planning permission 


Planting trees and woodland helped communities to engage in biodiversity and climate solutions; was beneficial for health, wellbeing, recreation and exercise; increased tree and woodland produce (such as fruits and nuts) and had the benefit of providing cleaner air.


It increased biodiversity by creating new habitat, reduced flood risk by slowing the flow of rainwater and stores carbon to combat climate change.


It also provided shelter and shade for livestock, improved soil quality, reduced nitrate and phosphate runoff, could diversify income generation (through timber, coppice, Christmas trees etc) and could generate carbon credits.


The Grant Application and Planting Support (GAPs) team provided support to Schools, Community Groups, Parish Councils, Farmers and Landowners in planting woodland, trees and hedgerows across Wiltshire and Swindon.




·       help people choose the right trees for their site

·       identify funding options and complete surveys and application forms

·       gave advice on planting, woodland design and aftercare.

·       link people and groups together to get their project off the ground. 


The officer then gave details on the Tree Warden Scheme, they were recruiting tree wardens across the county to:


·       survey existing trees in their area

·       identify new places to plant trees and local landowners who are keen to plant

·       apply for funding for tree, hedgerow and woodland planting in their community.


This scheme was approved by the Tree Council and all training would be provided.


Funding options were listed as follows:


·       Great Western Community Forest (Trees for Climate)

·       Forestry England (EWCO)

·       Woodland Trust

·       Tree Council

·       Urban Tree Challenge Fund

·       Trees for Streets

·       UK Community Tree planting

·       Wessex Water

·       National Highways.


The officer encouraged people to get in touch on if they:


·       wanted to plant trees on parish or community land and don’t know where to start

·       work at a school, business or other site where there is potential for trees, hedges or an orchard

·       are a farmer or landowner and want more advice about tree, hedge or woodland planting

·       want more information about becoming a tree warden.


It was also highlighted that to ensure Wiltshire met its tree planting targets, all trees being planted should be logged. So, if people were planting trees or woodland they were also encouraged to get in touch.


In response to a question  ...  view the full minutes text for item 24.



Stonehenge Area Board Priorities

·       To receive a presentation from the Strategic Engagement and Partnerships Manager (SEPM) looking back at what has been achieved.


·       To set the Area Board priorities and lead councillors for those priorities for the forthcoming year.


Report to follow.

Supporting documents:


Graeme Morrison, Strategic Engagement and Partnerships Manager (SEPM) presented the Area Board end of year report which had been published in the agenda supplement. The report looked back at the last couple of years (May 2021 – March 2023).


It was explained that the Area Board invested in local community projects and initiatives that meet local priorities and deliver exceptional outcomes for residents. Over the time period, via grant awards, the Board had invested £74,494 in communities, £44,828 in youth and £15,230 in older and vulnerable adults.  Money leveraged from these grant awards from community contributions, which could include fundraising, grants, services in kind or volunteering was £359,556 for communities, £157,570 for youth and £235,310 for older and vulnerable adults.


The officer detailed some of the previous local priorities for the Area Board which were:


·       Youth engagement

·       Reducing our carbon footprint and protecting our environment

·       Improving the health and wellbeing of our community


Actions taken to support these priorities were also detailed. One which was highlighted was the development of the Rural Youth Outreach Project. This had included hosting numerous pop-up youth events, the last of which at Shrewton Village Hall attracted over 60 young people to attend. The group were working on developing some potential volunteers to create a sustainable youth offer in these settings. The work of the Local Highways and Footpaths Improvements Group (LHFIG) was also highlighted.


The Area Board priorities for 2023/24 needed to be considered and agreed and sources of evidence to help support the Board in their decision were detailed, such as the JSNA Wiltshire Intelligence which could be seen online  here:


Following consideration, and on the proposal of Cllr Graham Wright, seconded by Cllr Mark Verbinnen, it was,




That the Area Board set the following priorities and lead councillors for the forthcoming year:


·       Supporting health and wellbeing (Cllr Monica Devendran)

·       Supporting young people (Cllr Mark Verbinnen)

·       Our environment (Cllr Rob Yuill & Cllr Kevin Daley)

·       Parish engagement (Cllr Graham Wright & Cllr Ian Blair-Pilling)

·       Addressing social and economic deprivation (covered over all priorities / All Cllrs)






Appointments to Outside Bodies and Working Groups

To consider the Area Board representatives to Outside Bodies and Membership of Working Groups as detailed in the attached report.

Supporting documents:


It was explained that this was an annual item to confirm Area Board representatives on Outside Bodies and non priority Working Groups and to approve the terms of reference of the working group.


On the proposal of Cllr Graham Wright, seconded by Cllr Monica Devendran, it was,




That the Stonehenge Area Board:


a)    Appoint Members as Lead representatives to Outside Bodies, any Non-Priority Working Groups and to the LHFIG, as set out at Appendix A (page 39);

b)    Note the Terms of Reference as set out in Appendix B (pages 41 – 44).



Positive Activities for Young People

To receive an update on youth activities and consider any applications for youth grants.


Remaining Budgets:


Young People



Young People Grants:



Grant Details

Amount Requested


Buzz Action FoundationCIO - Amesbury Youth Cafe and Tuesday NightYouth Club



Splash Community First - Splash in the Stonehenge Area



Full grant report can be seen under agenda item 15.



Cllr Mark Verbinnen as lead Member for young people, gave an update to the meeting. A Local Youth Network (LYN) meeting was held on 5 June where the group discussed varying the locations for the LYN meeting, a range of possible events for young people and the youth grants.


Cllr Verbinnen had attended the Wiltshire Outdoor Learning Team’s activity at Lords Walk in Amesbury. This was an event which had been supported by a Stonehenge Area Board grant and was well attended, with the young people in attendance really enjoying themselves. He had also attended a Scout group and a visited a youth camp in Amesbury.


The Buzz Action Foundation, who had also previously received grants from the Stonehenge Area Board and had a grant application which would be considered at the meeting, gave a presentation on their work. Details were given on their work and events such as their outdoor activity area in Amesbury, indoor curling at the Youth Café and a circus workshop in Durrington where the ariel activities rig was very popular. 


Young People Grants


·       Buzz Action Foundation CIO, Amesbury Youth Café and Tuesday Night Youth Club, amount requested £5,000.


The applicant had already spoken in support of the project; however, they answered some questions which councillors had. It was explained that all the money applied for would be put towards the organisations youth work and was not related to the circus club. The Youth Café and Tuesday Night Youth Club were aimed at teenagers and engaged with about 25 to 60 children, for 44 weeks of the year.


Cllr Graham Wright moved a motion to approve the grant in full as he had seen the groups work in action and thought that it was first class. This motion was seconded by Cllr Monica Devendran.


Cllr Verbinnen did not take part in the vote on this item due to his previously declared interest.




The Buzz Action Foundation CIO was awarded £5,000 towards the Amesbury Youth Cafe and Tuesday Night Youth Club.


Reason – The application met the Young People grant criteria 2023/24.


·       Splash Community First, Splash in the Stonehenge Area, £5,000.


A representative of Splash Community First spoke in support of their application.


Councillors asked questions of the applicant.


The application did not break down the activities that were planned and councillors requested further details. It was explained that they delivered holidays and activities for young people with difficulties (who met the criteria), these young people lived in the area and would be taken to various locations to undertake activities. This helped the young people to be free of any issues in the local area and to mix with other young people.


In response to a question regarding how the Board could be assured that the activities were for young people from the area, the applicant highlighted that during 2021/22 the organisation had worked with 36 young people from the area and they had accessed 156 sessions, which equated to 4.3 sessions per young person.


In  ...  view the full minutes text for item 27.



Health & Wellbeing Group

To receive an update on the Health and Wellbeing group and consider any applications for Older and Vulnerable Adults grants.


Remaining Budgets:


Older & Vulnerable



Older & Vulnerable Grants:



Grant Details

Amount Requested


Shrewton Paths Project - Shrewton Footpath Guide



Full grant report can be seen under agenda item 15.


Cllr Monica Devendran as Chair of the Health and Wellbeing Group (HWBG) gave an update to the meeting. A HWBG meeting was held on 6 June at the Holiday Inn. It had been agreed to vary locations within the Stonehenge Community Area. The group also agreed to work with Silver Salisbury to develop a programme of positive activities in the Amesbury area.


Details were given regarding the Coronation Concert, which was held on 10 May with about 100 people in attendance and had been a great success.


Older and Vulnerable Adults Grants


·       Shrewton Paths Project, Shrewton Footpath Guide requested £1,000.


It was noted that this grant application had been withdrawn.





Update from the Local Highways and Footpaths Improvement Group (LHFIG)

To note the minutes and consider any recommendations arising from the last LHFIG meeting held on 19 April 2023, as set out in the attached report.




·       1-21-18 Stoford bottom signing and lining improvements, £750

·       1-22-16 Figheldean 20mph speed limit assessment, £2175

·       1-22-17 Great Wishford 20mph roundels, £2363

·       1-22-27 Shrewton B3083 signing and lining improvements, £900

·       1-22-28 Shrewton Rollestone Crossroads weight limit signing amendments, £1088


Further information on the LHFIG process can be found here.


Supporting documents:


The Board considered the report and funding recommendations arising from the last LHFIG meeting held on 19 April 2023.


On the proposal of Cllr Graham Wright, seconded by Cllr Kevin Daley, it was;




To note the minutes of the Stonehenge LHFIG held on 19 April 2023.


To approve the LHFIG funding recommendations to the following schemes:


·       1-21-18 Stoford bottom signing and lining improvements, £750

·       1-22-16 Figheldean 20mph speed limit assessment, £2,175

·       1-22-17 Great Wishford 20mph roundels, £2,363

·       1-22-27 Shrewton B3083 signing and lining improvements, £900

·       1-22-28 Shrewton Rollestone Crossroads weight limit signing amendments, £1088



Community Area Grants

To consider any applications for Community Area Grant funding.


Remaining Budget:


Community Area Grants



Community Area Grants:



Grant Details

Amount Requested


Amesbury methodist church – community hall re-furb and roof repair



Further information on the Area Board Grant system can be found here.



Supporting documents:


·       Amesbury methodist church – community hall refurbishment and roof repair, £1,250


Representatives of the Amesbury Methodist Church spoke in support of their application.


Members of the Board queried the application as grant funding could not be used for religious purposes. It was clarified that the application was for the community hall which was used to community benefit by many groups and organisations for activities such as Alzheimer’s Support, a Ukrainian Hub, the Foodbank, a Warm Space and Scottish Dancing.


In response to further questions the representatives explained that the Church was running at a deficit and the grant was not now for roof repairs, as these had already been undertaken due to the urgency of the situation. It was now to repair water damage caused by the previously leaky roof.


Cllr Devendran confirmed that she had visited the hall and had seen that it was used for community benefit. Officers confirmed that many area boards awarded grants to churches or religious organisations where it was shown that the grant was not for religious purposes but gave community benefit.  


Cllr Devendran proposed that the grant be awarded in full, this was seconded by Cllr Graham Wright.




Amesbury methodist church was awarded £1,250 towards refurbishment.


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