Our town is a very nice town
THE online community newspaper for Nailsea people, their family and their friends
January homes for sale by Property Peeps page sponsors Hunters Estate Agents and Letting Agents in the High Street HERE. Plus news that district council has decided to go it alone with a Local Plan is also on this page
Our Property Peeps page sponsors HENSONS estate agents sold two featured homes within days of Nailsea People posting details online. With more than 80 networked offices in the south west and London the Nailsea office is at Ivy Court, 61 High Street. Read more HERE about planning applications approved and in the pipeline as Nailsea moves towards welcoming hundreds of new home owners at Engine Lane, Netherton Grange + possibly The Uplands. Work has started at Youngwood Lane by Taylor Wimpey
All our pubs and eating out place are open and our events calendar is filling up. Sadly there are some event cancellations like the Nailsea Skatepark Festival but the next big event is the Trendlewood Community Festival with live music and lots of attrations. More information on the What's On page HERE
Christmas in the bag
It is August and someone has to mention Christmas so first past the festive post for 2021 is the Rotary Club of Nailsea and Backwell.
In a Monty Python ‘handbags at dawn’ moment the Rotarians want donations of pre-loved purses, shoulder, shopping and clutch bags for its fundraising charity stall.
This makes a welcome return at the farmers’ and craft market on Saturday, November 20.
We know this is a few months ahead but Roger Shorland is anxious to replenish stock for bumper handbag sales.
He said: “If you have any good-condition, quality handbags that you no longer need call 01275 854076 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.”
How to spend millions of ££s
SLIDE SHOWS: Ideas for arts and heritage in Nailsea. The first has been costed at £10,000 to rent a room at Scotch Horn Centre. Details of Nailsea's original heritage walk by Nailsea & District Local History Society is on our Healthy Peeps page HERE. A scheme using metal silhouettes similar to those at Millennium Park was proposed many years ago but abandonned because of costs
Nailsea Town Council has just banked a first instalment of £1,626,937 from the sale of land at Engine Lane.
In approximately 18 months the second instalment is due which will be for even more as all the legal and planning fees were taken out of the first lump sum.
Added to this amount both North Somerset unitary and Nailsea town councils will benefit from the Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) imposed on developers for building in an area.
Barratt Homes made an agreement with North Somerset Council for consent to develop at Parish Brook which included the following contributions:
£26,000 towards the improvement of existing transport infrastructure;
£2,002 towards the improvement of public rights of way; and
£68,839 towards the research and migration of the Horseshoe Bat population within the local area.
Wimpey Taylor is building 450 at Netherton Grange, at Youngwood Lane.
It says on its website: ‘We believe our proposals will carry wider benefits to the community beyond the provision of new homes. These benefits will include a number of financial contributions that will be made towards the local community as part of our proposed development, in agreement with the relevant local authorities. These will be in the form of a Section 106 Agreement and Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL). Further details of these contributions will be released once finalised with the council’.
So all-in-all the town council will be ‘quids in’ and for a group of 19 councillors not normally called upon to manage millions – the bulk of the £500,000 annual budget is usually gobbled up in staff costs and grants to local organisation - it will be interesting to find out where ‘our’ planning gains will be going.
What is clear is this money can’t be used to balance the books and must go on capital assets which is usually defined as an investment in property.
Former councillor and Hews Recruit director James Steel is seeking to re-join the town council this summer following the resignation after 13 years of Jane Holt who works at Waitrose.
He said: “Selling the land has always been controversial but it does now seem that there will significant monetary funds available to support and improve the town and it will be really interesting to see how the first instalment is invested and the benefit it can bring to the town.
“The town council exists to support and represent its residents so if any Nailsea person has any ideas then I personally feel it’s important to get involved and share your thoughts and ideas.
“You can do by contacting the clerk Jo Duffy, any local councillor (there is a list here https://www.nailseatowncouncil.gov.uk/council-team/) or by going to a meeting at the Tithe Barn.”
Mr Steel is a founder member of Nailsea Community Group set up in June 2020 to support resident’s during the coronavirus crisis.
It is now a community interest company working from 26 Somerset Square and acts as the base for many initiatives in the town and offers advice, help and support to many.
Nailsea Town Council vice-chair Emily Miller who is an assistant producer with the BBC Natural History Unit in Bristol was co-opted to serve Youngwood ward in late 2020.
It was Ms Miller who was the driving force behind the much-admired carving of the village green oak tree stump into a woodland sculpture.
GROVE GROWTH: Built more than 50 years ago it was once a state-of-the-art badminton centre but since then it has had lots of add-on extensions. It is time to re-build?
She has presented several clear and well-thought-out ideas for investing the money.
What is certain is the hope of a consensus, while desired, is thought unlikely as there are many competing ideas.
Nailsea Town Council already owns the Tithe Barn and 65 High Street (with an outstanding loan) but has an interest in buildings like the Grove Sports & Social Club on its land and leased long term to Nailsea Playing Fields Association, a local sport and environment charity.
In a newspaper poll dated 1986 Nailsea people voted as their top priority for a hospital in the town!
They also put a new sports centre next and then a swimming pool.
But priorities change and in 2021 what would the people of Nailsea chose.
Adding to the property portfolio seems a sound investment and the obvious choice but with that comes maintenance and running costs.
Ms Miller had previous proposed making Grove Sports & Social Centre the sports hub for the town and taking over Scotch Horn Centre for arts and performance.
Back in February this year she said: “…perhaps Scotch Horn might be the perfect solution as part of a bigger strategy.
“If Scotch Horn became the site for Nailsea Community Arts Space we could make the Grove a dedicated, state-of-the-art, up-to-date sports complex, enclosing the current facilities at Scotch Horn.
“Both sites would benefit from investment and this could be a forward-thinking plan to protect and build upon the future of our leisure facilities.”
A swimming pool, museum linked to a heritage trail, cinema with comfortable seats, new home for the library and even new cemetery site are all options being voiced.
For now, at a full town council meeting on Wednesday, August 4, Ms Miller was content to propose a community arts programme based in the pottery room at Scotch Horn which is available to rent.
This very reminisce of the WEA classes once housed in the Further Education Block at the old Nailsea School.
The mobility mean streets of Nailsea
Nailsea People has long highlighted the problems faced by people with disabilities negotiating our highways and byways.
See our pavement parking page HERE.
Drivers parking on pavements and overgrown foliage can cause a nightmare for people in wheelchairs or on mobility scooters and parents pushing prams.
Crumbling paving stones and uneven surfaces can trip even the most able-bodies pedestrian.
And access to our railway station has become a decades long campaign.
Now a Nailsea councillor is asking for help to document what it is like for those encountering issues when trying to get around the town.
Dee Holbrook said: “Having been confined to a mobility scooter for six weeks, I have noticed that the streets of Nailsea are not very accessible, in some places downright dangerous for people in wheelchairs, prams, mobility scooters, or those with vision impairment, unsteady on their feet, and I’m sure for many others
“I am putting together a report, with pictures and statements from residents, on the areas that cause problems such as unsafe crossing points, pavements dangerously uneven, badly overgrown lanes, so if anyone wants to add to this a place or experience please let me know
“I will be presenting the report to the town council to be agreed that it will be sent to North Somerset Council for consideration as urgent repairs for our town.”
Please email your experiences to Mrs Houlbrook at email@example.com.
And with some irony a blind Nailsea resident suffered a catastrophic fall this week due to cars parked on pavements and a collapsed paving slab.
Mark Regan was walking in Watery Lane with his five-year-old granddaughter when a concrete slab gave way, causing him and his guide dog, Merlin, to fall into an 18-inch gap in the road.
Merlin the guide dog was already walking out of his usual position, due to the number of cars parked along the pavement.
Mr Regan said: "I can only assume that people parking along there had
weakened the pavement.
“My initial reaction was to call out as loud as I could to draw someone's attention.
"A man saw me fall and rushed to my aid, a nearby nurse practitioner also came to help."
During the incident, Mark suffered a four-inch wound on his calf while his dog Merlin escaped unscathed.
He added: "The nurse which came to help me wrapped my leg as it was bleeding heavily.
“If these people did not help, then I would have probably dusted myself off and carried on with my journey - possibly collapsing down the road.
"Another scary thought is that I usually carry my granddaughters on my shoulders or in my backpack along this route. Thankfully, I did not that day."
Mark was then later taken to Clevedon Minor Injury Unit, where he praised his doctor's service after receiving 10 stitches to his leg.
Ring O'Bells, Nailsea
computer techies for the online community
The TEK Hut was started by Ben Parker in the summer of 2018.
For 12 years Ben had been one of the team at The ICT Workshop which provided a wide variety of computer services to Nailsea, Clevedon, Yatton, Backwell and even Weston-Super-Mare.
Ben felt it right to continue the same great service customers had previously experienced but under new branding for a new business and The Tek Hut was born.
Trading at the familiar location in Nailsea, The Tek Hut will continue to offer the same cost effective, new laptops and PCs, upgrades, onsite support for homes and businesses through to a wide range of workshop services and accessories.
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Clevedon Walk, Nailsea, BS48 1RS