The matters of detail dealt with at Parish Council meetings would, I am sure, surprise many. We don’t attempt to report them all in this column (and would you want to read about them?) but as an example here are the items dealt with at the May meeting. Road repairs and numerous individual potholes, litter, fly-tipping, speeding traffic, crime figures and specific crimes, sandbags, flooding and the maintenance of streams, drainage, traffic from the industrial estate, the Commons Act 2006, planning applications and decisions, the Local Development Framework, new facilities for children (Parish Go Extreme project), maintenance of street lighting, a telephone wire, repairs at the recreation ground, fences, picnic tables, nettles in the Millennium Copse, replacement of notice board, local bus services, payments to Clerk, Village Warden and five contractors, statement of accounts and annual return and assorted official correspondence. That someone does all this stuff for us makes a difference. By the way, Parish Councillors may want me to add that they receive no payment, don’t claim expenses and are not eligible for a second homes allowance!
Police officers reported that three arrests had been made as a result of a report of suspicious activity made by a local resident on 25th April. The vehicle concerned was stopped later in the day. Two car number plates had been stolen in Wilstone recently, and the police advice is to fix number plates with special security bolts which can be bought at car accessory shops.
Exploratory digging to find the lost drains of the Long Marston recreation ground has produced a result, reported Cllr. Mike Tomlinson. Sadly no Saxon hoard or Viking pirate treasure was uncovered by the excavator, but broken drain pipes were revealed, so that’s something at least. The drain does exist, but it’s lost the facility to flow. A contractor will be engaged to replace the length which drains the bottom end of the playing field, and connect it once more to the good bit which was examined in the first exploration.
Cllr. Jill Finlan said that fly tipping is a serious problem in this area, with Astrope Lane being particularly vulnerable because it is so isolated. Many villagers walk their dogs in the vicinity of Astrope Lane, and she urged them to be on the alert for suspicious activity, particularly vans stopped in the lane. Details of vehicles seen fly tipping should be reported to the police. The problem is costing council tax payers a lot of money. Recently eight tons of fly-tipped rubble had to be removed from Tring Road, Wilstone, by Dacorum Borough Council.
The deliberate damage to the BMX track at Long Marston (reported in the May edition) is to be repaired. Local resident David Jenkinson has offered to make the repairs free of charge. Councillors were grateful for his offer and agreed that the BMX track was a well used facility which now fitted well into the recreation ground.