To receive updates from the Town and Parish Council Representatives, and from other partner organisations:
· Wiltshire Police
· Dorset and Wiltshire Fire and Rescue Service
· Healthwatch Wiltshire
· B&NES, Swindon and Wiltshire CCG
· Town and Parish Councils
The Chairman referred the meeting to the written updates in the agenda pack and verbal updates were received from the following partners:
· Wiltshire Police
Inspector Tina Osborn gave an update to the meeting stating that she had taken over from Inspector Dean Knight and there had been a slight change to the structure within neighbourhood teams. There would now be dedicated neighbourhood teams and dedicated response teams, but these teams would work closely together. Inspector Osbourn covered community and neighbourhood issues for Amesbury, Tidworth and Salisbury. All crime figures in Amesbury were low, and below average, however there had been a spike as restrictions were relaxed in February and another spike was expected the next time restrictions were relaxed. The force were undertaking lots of community engagement work, both face to face and virtually.
The summer solstice was coming up and work was taking place on preparing for a potentially bigger event at Stonehenge this year, dependent on restrictions. There was also a small protest camp near Stonehenge and there was good engagement between the Police and the camp.
Inspector Osbourn encouraged attendees to report any issues they came across in all areas. Intelligence was vital to planning resources.
In response to questions Inspector Osbourn explained that she did not have data regarding traffic issues or speeding to hand, particularly regarding the A36, but Sarah Holden who leads community speedwatch was probably the best person to contact so she would pass on contact details.
Inspector Osbourn was unaware of anti-social behaviour issues in Centenary Park, near Evergreen Court. She stated that she would chase up with the PCSO team and advised that all issues such as these should be reported via 101 or the online reporting system.
Matthew Maggs, DWFRS Station Commander for South East Wiltshire, gave an update to the meeting. Mr Maggs explained that consultations with members of the fire authority were underway to put Amesbury Fire Station back to a day crewed status. So full time fire fighters would be based there either 5 or 7 days a week, which was good news for Amesbury. There were struggles keeping the station and crews available at all times so the DWFRS were always looking to recruit on call fire fighters. The DWFRS were also catching up on fire safety checks and hopefully the back log caused due to the pandemic would start to reduce soon.
In response to questions Mr Maggs explained that the police would be better placed to advise on the causes of the Road Traffic Collisions the crews had attended and that the DWFRS would be retaining 2 appliances (fire engines) in Amesbury.
· Town and Parish Councils
Durrington Town Council
Cllr Marion Wardell gave an update stating that Durrington was thriving and busy and starting to open back up again, welcoming people back to their venues and youth services would be restarting in June. There was a project underway with the Wiltshire Wildlife Trust in order to tackle river bank erosion caused by water voles, which were a protected species. Works would be undertaken in the Autumn once nesting season was over. It was hoped that residents would volunteer to help in this project. In the summer CCTV would be installed on the pavilion on the rec and it was hoped that this would deter vandalism. The pavilion had a new boiler in Durrington had some new SIDS (speed indicator devices), in part thanks to grants from Amesbury Area Board.
Shrewton Parish Council
Cllr Richard Harris gave an update to the meeting and had sent in a written report which is appended to the minutes. One of the main issues for Shrewton was the large volume of traffic transiting through the village and speeding.
Berwick St James Parish Meeting
Christian Lange gave an update to the meeting stating that he had been to a Town and Parish Council session run by Wiltshire Council, on Carbon Reduction with Ariane Crampton, Head of Carbon Reduction, which was excellent and he presented the details to the parish meeting. 75% of attendees expressed interest in a special meeting to discuss the issues raised and look at what other parishes had done regarding the reducing carbon emissions. The Chairman requested an invite to the session.
Amesbury Town Council (ATC)
Cllr Ian Mitchell stated that ATC were restarting the neighbourhood planning process, were keen to involve everyone and would be holding virtual sessions on the subject. A presentation regarding the Amesbury neighbourhood plan is appended to the minutes.
At the Chairman’s invitation Cllr Robert Yuill gave an update on the Boscombe Down playing fields which were currently unused. Cllr Yuill explained that he had been contacted regarding ATC taking over Boscombe Down playing fields. ATC had voted to begin negotiations with the MOD on taking over the asset. It would be a long process but was a very positive step for all in the local area.