Archive for the ‘Not Official but I was there’ Category

Chain Gang Catch Up

March 17, 2011

Chain Gang Catch Up

Wendy and I have made a pact! Each week we visit a different pub in Wychavon District for lunch. During our year, we have made many friends and occasionally some us get together for a catch up. Today we had luncheon at The Crown, Wychbold, Droitwich

L-R Malcolm Hall (Redditch), me, Derek Killingworth (Bewdley), Wendy, Meriel Scurrell, Chris Scurrell (Bromsgrove) and Howard Martin (Kidderminster) 

Great to see everyone again, and a very good value meal at just £57 plus drinks for all of us. 
( It’s a Two 4 One pub)



Evesham Civic Service

May 16, 2010

May 16th 3.00pm
All Saints Church, Evesham

I am no longer chairman of Wychavon District Council, however, I am still a councilor and I am an Evesham Town Councillor. I am here today, representing Evesham Town Council and supporting the New Mayor at his civic service. Tradition dictates that the service takes place , on the first available Sunday following Mayormaking. This year the Mayor’s chaplain is The Reverend Barry Collins, Vicar of St Peter’s, Bengeworth, Evesham.

Having met at Evesham Town Hall,  we line up ready to process. Macebearers lead the Mayor, dignitaries and civic guests.

New Chairman of Wychavon District Council on the far left, with consort, husband Maurice.

Cllr Jim Bulman, Mayor of Evesham, reads the lesson,

followed by Evesham Volunteer Centre Manager, Helen Gray.
There were also contributions from local school’s and an excellent sermon by Barry Collins.

After the service, all attending were invited to tea and cakes.
A lovely service.

End of Term Doo – 'The Other One'

May 9, 2010

Sunday May 9th 6.00pm
Raphaels Restaurant, Hampton Ferry, Evesham

Diana Raphael asked me if she could host a party, for those people that have made this year special, and to celebrate my end of year. This included most of our chain gang, officers from WDC, winners of the Wonders of Wychavon Competition, and our family. Wendy and I were very happy to accept.
Pictures tell a story, so look below. 
The evening started with a boat trip, generously donated by
Avon Leisure Cruises

On the bow 

James, my son the elder

Passing our narrowboat, Lord Toulouse

Our guest’s on the port side

and on the starboard side

Having turned at Evesham Lock, we head back to Raphaels Restaurant.

Dave Smith (left) owner of Avon Leisure Cruises and skipper of the Spirit of Freedom on Avon, give the Mayor of Redditch a lesson in boat handling.

Enjoying the evening were winners of the Wonder of Wychavon photographic competition, Andrew Sully on my left and Nick Cosnett.
Picture courtesy of The Vale Magazine.

After a wonderful, if a little cool, river trip, supper is waiting. What a spread.

Some of the chain gang

and some more

John Raphael provided some sparking entertainment

and the Mayor of Redditch, Cllr Malcolm Hall, provided some more.

After a fabulous meal, fireworks, donated by Celebration Fireworks

A brilliant display brought the evening to an end. It was a wonderful night and a very fitting end to our year. To be surrounded by those who have contributed most was just great. Many thanks to Diana, John and Robbie Raphael, to Rob Lewis of Celebration Fireworks and Dave Smith and Geraldine Cooper from Avon Leisure Cruises for everything.
Thanks to Chris Scurrell for some of the above pictures

The General Election Hustings

April 22, 2010

April 22nd 6.30pm
All Saints Church, Evesham

The general election is on May 6th 2010 and while the chairman of WDC is a non political role, it is right and proper for me as an individual to attend political functions if I so desire. It is not every year we get a general election and who is elected can have influence at national level for the benefit of Wychavon. The prospective candidates from Conservative, Green, Labour, and Liberal Democrat parties were represented. Also standing in the Mid Worcestershire Constituency is John White, UK Independence party, who did not attend this meeting. Parts of the Redditch and West Worcestershire constituencies also cover Wychavon District.

L-R Margaret Rowley(Lib Dem), Robin Lunn (Labour), Peter Luff (Conservative) and Gordon Mathews (Green)

This Hustings meeting was arranged by Churches Together and the Reverend Andrew Spurr took on the chairman role.

Questions were asked and answered on a range of subjects

both local and national.
An interesting night. Was there a clear winner?, did the exercise change anyones mind?, did the candidates persuade anyone to vote in a particular way,or indeed at all? Time will tell.
Pictures courtesy of Evesham Observer 

Worcester Warriors V London Irish

April 10, 2010

Saturday 10th April, 12 Noon
Sixways Stadium, Warriors Way, Worcester

Postponed from January 9th 2010, this match was always going to be a needle one. Now nearing the season end, a win was a must for both teams. Read the match report here
We were the guest’s of Evesham Journal editor John Murphy and his wife. John a very keen rugby fan and supporter of London Irish put on a splendid meal and hospitality and we had a very enjoyable afternoon.

Wendy outside the ground.

Some of the 9841 cheering fans, enjoying the game and sunshine.

Even though Warriors open the scoring at the far end,

LI soon pulled one back.

The battle continued

and even the cheer leaders, ( shame I forgot my binoculars 🙂 ) could not lift the warriors to success and the score finished at LI 23 WW 13
As a result LI went to 4th position in the table and WW…… this space Worcester Warriors Website
See video of the game here:-
London Irish Try

London Irish Conversion


Davies Road, Evesham – New Crossing

March 31, 2010

March 31st 10.00am
Davies Road, Evesham

Some of us have been trying to get Worcester County Council to install a pedestrian crossing at the junction of Davies Road and St Richards Road, for years. Surveys have been done and the need has been confirmed. This meeting was to try again to persuade the council officers that this crossing should be top of their priority list.

On site, L-R Roy Fullee, WCC officer – County and District Councillor Bob Banks – District Councillor Gerry O’Donnell and County and District Councillor John Smith.

Liz Dyde Leaving Doo

March 30, 2010

March 30th 12 noon
Civic Centre, Pershore

Liz  has worked for Wychavon District Council for 33 years and today, she moved onto pasture new. Liz has been part of the senior management team at WDC for some considerable time holding many posts. Since April 2009 she was Head of Housing and Customer Service and responsible for Customer Services, Housing (Operations), Housing(Strategy), Shops, Business/Improvement, Concessionary Fares, Electoral Registration , Elections and Revenues & Benefits Liaison. All important and vital . Many of these departments are now shared services with other councils.

Of course over 33 years, there are many funny stories to tell and Jack Hegarty told them well.

Liz, receiving flowers and gifts from colleagues

Just a few of the many friends Liz has at WDC
Enjoy your new life Liz and don’t forget, you are always welcome at WDC for cup of tea if you’re passing.



March 15, 2010

March 15th 9.30am
Cowl Street, Evesham

Evesham has bollards. It has some at the top of Bridge Street, some at the bottom of Bridge Street, some in the Market Square and some in Cowl Street. Most of them have not worked properly for years and some of us councillors on the Town, District and County councils have been trying to get them fixed. Without much success I might add. Basically the maintainance is the responsibility of the county Council. The bollards over the years have been extremely unreliable and the ongoing cost is a worry. To this end, Cllr John Smith and myself met with a senior transport officer, to try and get the bollard in Cowl Street fixed permanently UP.

This would help traffic flow and be generally safer than leaving things as they are. Only trouble now, is the traffic order is likely to take 12 months! Still it’s a start.

Overview and Scrutiny Committee

February 9, 2010

February 9th 6.15pm
Committee Rooms, Civic Centre, Pershore

The O and S committee is one of the most important in the council. Councils operating executive arrangements are required to create an Overview and Scrutiny Committee, which is composed of all councillors who are not on the Executive Committee of that council, minus the number of minority party members necessary in order for the Overview and Scrutiny Committee to meet the rules on proportionality defined in the Local Government And Housing Act 1989 (ie. the respective sizes of the political groups on the council). I am not a member of the committee, however, I was asked by the chairman to attend this one, as substitute for one of the members unable to be there. There was also an item on the agenda regarding a report  into the recent Revenue and Benefits Shared Services with other councils. The author of the report, with others, is Cllr Rob Adams, chairman of WDC O/S committee. Cllr Adams asked me to chair this particular section of the agenda. This task would normally be handled by the Vice Chairman of the O/S committee, however she was also away.

Tonight’s Agenda and Minutes

Functions of Overview and Scrutiny

Holding the Executive accountable
This is often undertaken by questioning Executive Members and council employees as to decisions made. By law, Overview and Scrutiny must have the right to ‘call-in’ decisions – ie ask the decision-maker to think again, or to refer the decision to the full Council if it is believed that the decision-maker has taken a decision in contravention of the Council’s budget or policy framework.

Policy development
Development of the policy framework is a shared responsibility between the Council’s Executive and the full Council itself. Many Councils have a procedure for detailed inspection of proposals by members on Overview and Scrutiny committees before the Executive brings final proposals to Council.

Performance and policy review
Overview and Scrutiny Committee or Select Committees undertake in-depth reviews of particular aspects of council service or operation. This is hoped to be a significant influence on future decisions of the Executive and inform developments both in policy and administrative practice.

Scrutiny of public services delivered by external organisations
The government wished to see Councils take a stronger role in scrutinising public services outside their own organisation. Accordingly, the Health and Social Care Act 2001 provided the Overview and Scrutiny functions of unitary authorities and county councils statutory powers to call in witnesses from local NHS bodies, and make recommendations that NHS organisations must consider as part of their decision-making processes. Similarly the Health and Social Care Act 2001 places requirements on NHS organisations to consult with health overview and scrutiny committees when considering substantial developments or variations to services. The Police and Justice Act 2006 will create similar scrutiny powers for external organisations with a role in crime and disorder, and the 2006 local government white paper proposes an even more wide-ranging external scrutiny role.

Evesham Town Council Meeting and Mayoral Elections

February 8, 2010

February 8th 6.30pm
Evesham Town Hall, Market Square, Evesham

Wendy and I are Evesham Town Councillors as well as district councillors. Twice a month, on a Monday, we are called to council meetings. A full council meeting is needed to ratify decisions taken by specific committee meetings Promotion, Property and personnel. The latter two, meet as required, Promotion, which I chair meet, every six weeks. The meeting also makes decisions on planning and matters of the day. All meetings are public, so come along.

The town Mayor, Cllr Alan Booth, chairs full council. To his left is Deputy Mayor Jim Bulman, to his right, town clerk Frank Green. The meeting takes place in the historic Town Hall council chamber.
See more at Evesham Town Council Website

Councillors make their deliberations surrounded by the Mayoral boards that date back to 1604

Once a year, immediately after the  February full council meeting, councillors decide who will be nominated at annual council (this year May 10th) to be Mayor and Deputy Mayor for the next municipal year. It is done now, in private, to save embarrassing those not elected, and to speed up the formal meeting in May.  As a matter of history, the incumbant Mayor is asked if they would like to  continue for a further year, if the offer is declined, nominations are sought. A vote is held if more than one person are proposed, unusually this was the case this year.


Winner of the election for Mayor 2010/11 is Deputy Mayor Cllr Jim Bulman

Winner of the election for deputy Mayor 2010/11 is 
Cllr Gerry O’Donnell