April 26, 2000

Chairmanís Report 1999 - 2000

Tim Daw 26 April 2000

I have been honoured to be your chairman for the last year; I hope I have represented you as you would wish.

This millennial year has been a busy one for the village, the council and many of us personally.

The parish council gained a new member who joined this year, Mrs Butcher, and I am sure we all appreciate the hard work she has done on behalf of the council and of the village. We have also appointed a joint (with Etchilhampton) school governor this year.

The village as benefited from the voluntary activities of the Millennium committee, both for the various festivities and from organising and implementing a tree and stone planting program that will be a lasting memorial. Our thanks go to them as well.

We also can celebrate the completion of the school and its excellent Ofsted reports, again a lot of voluntary labour has made this a success.

The village as whole thrives with many different clubs and societies of people giving up their free time and creating value for all. Only last month many of us enjoyed the pantomime for instance.

As Chairman I feel disappointed that I havenít managed to drive the business of the council forward faster. In many ways I am sorry that despite much hard work we havenít finished many projects this year. The dead hand of bureaucracy seems to reduce all progress to a crawl.

We are still slowly going through the steps we need to take to improve the access to the Green, we are still battling to improve footpaths, though there was a success with the new kissing gates and bridge, and we are still being exercised by the amenity area on the glebe.

The council also spends an immense amount of time just keeping the normal business of a council going, making sure that planning decisions have a local input, keeping the grass mown and battling for the interests of the village with the many many layers of committees, councils, and bodies that control our every move. My thanks to all the members for their ceaseless and unrecognised work through out the year. And I would particularly like to thank the Clerk for all her hard work, the job doesnít get any easier.

She also has accepted the extra burden imposed on us by ourselves of being on a pilot project to put our Audit out to tender. This opening up of a monopoly to market forces should show benefits to us and the ratepayers.
This year also saw the introduction of the Wigglybus. My cynical view is that so far all the hundreds of thousands of pounds spent on this venture has done is given a few people a few cheap journeys, closed down a couple of regular bus routes and enabled a lot of consultants do a lot of consulting. I hope I will be proved wrong because in the next year rural transport is going to be a major issue and good solutions are hard to find. I hope the council will not give into every single-issue interest group on this matter and continue to display its usual healthy scepticism.

In the next year I am sure we will have even more paper from above showered onto us, that we will finish some of our projects and that we will continue to try to do the best we can for the whole village. And I hope I can continue to serve the village and the council in any way I can.

Posted by timdaw at April 26, 2000 03:06 PM
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