Wokingham Town and Evendons Neighbourhood Action Group

Working together to make our neighbourhood a better and safer place


Travellers eviction and request to be vigilant

Posted by Stephen Newton on August 23, 2016 at 5:00 AM Comments comments (0)

Arbor Lane, Winnersh eviction of travellers

For your information the travellers on the Arbor Lane, Winnersh site have been served with a Section 61 eviction notice yesterday to be off the land 


All land owners are requested to take steps to ensure that their land is secure so as not to incur further unlawful encampments or unlawful trespass.

If you see any signs of further areas, industrial or rural being entered, please ring the police on 101.


Update on Blagrove Lane Travellers

Posted by Stephen Newton on August 16, 2016 at 3:50 AM Comments comments (0)

The applicants challenged the Planning Inspectorate’s decision. The basis of the challenge is: The Inspector has erred in law - he has said that a planning obligation for financial contributions is required and in fact the Council said it was not. 

Until this matter is resolved the enforcement notice (To vacate) does not come into effect and hence the 9 month time scale for compliance has not commenced.

The permission hearing was scheduled for 14 July 2016 in the High Court. (We appologise for the late notice on this. There was a disconnect in communications)

For information on process:

The decision on permission can be handed down at the hearing itself.

However it is much more likely is that this is handed down separately, following detailed consideration by the Court. The process of drafting a Judgment normally takes 1-4 weeks. 

    1. If permission is refused, the appellants have the right to request that the decision is reconsidered at an oral renewal hearing within 7 days (except where the case is considered “totally without merit”;). The Planning Court aims to hear oral renewal hearings within 1 month of this request.
    2. If permission is granted, the matter will be entered into the warned list. Matters in the warned list are normally heard within six to nine months. The Planning Court considers statutory reviews a matter of priority, and aims to hear them within six months of issue. Therefore the target date for the substantive hearing would be mid-October 2016.
    3. If the Court refuses the appellants’ claim, it is possible for the appellants to seek leave to appeal from the Court of Appeal. This would depend on the content of the Judgment. The appellant would once again need permission to appeal to the Court of Appeal. In broad terms, if permission is granted, the overall Court of Appeal process normally takes between 6 months – 1 year.
    4. If the High Court agrees with the appellants, this will not necessarily have the effect of reversing the Planning Inspectorate’s decision. The Court does not necessarily have to quash the decision, but the normal process is that the matter is returned to the Inspectorate for reconsideration.


However; The Planning Inspectorate has accepted that the Inspector erred in law and that he has reached the unsupportable conclusion that a unilateral undertaking was required where that was not advanced. The Government Legal Service are therefore proposing to concede the appeal, and agree a form of Order by which the decision is remitted to an Inspector for re-hearing.

It therefore seems that the way forward will be that the appeal decision is invalid and there will be a further appeal hearing. The enforcement notice continues to be held in abeyance.

The good news is that the injunction is still in force so they cannot bring any further caravans onto the land.

It does take a long time to resolve these issues so please be prepared for the unauthorised use to continue for some time.

It’s not great but we are completely reassured that WBC officers are doing all they can.

They are as frustrated about this situation as we are.



Thank you to Mark Ashwell for this update. Note: I have edited the response - without changing the facts or message.

Update 6 - 23 My

Posted by Stephen Newton on May 24, 2015 at 3:05 AM Comments comments (0)
Update 6 May 23rd 2015 Dear all Thank you for attending the meeting on Thursday evening, as agreed this is a copy of the statement made by Mark Ashwell The planning situation is as follows: There is currently an appeal against the refusal of the planning application. The procedure for determining the appeal has not yet been agreed. However, the Council has served a planning enforcement notice. It is likely that this will be appealed and that the Planning Inspectorate will link the two appeals and change the procedure to a Public Inquiry. The Planning Inspectorate will set a date for the Inquiry. There are currently delays at the Planning Inspectorate. It is the guestimate that we will have to wait about three months for an Inquiry date to be set and the Inquiry may not take place until early next year. In the meantime the enforcement notice is held in abeyance. Local residents can attend and speak at Hearings and Inquiries. This is the link to the Planning Inspectorate's guidance. http://www.planningportal.gov.uk/uploads/pins/taking-part_planning-inquiry.pdf http://www.planningportal.gov.uk/uploads/pins/taking-part_planning-hearing.pdf Local residents could consider clubbing together and appointing their own planning consultant to represent them at the appeal if they chose. The appeal will either be allowed or dismissed. We usually have to wait about 4 months for appeal decisions. If allowed the pitches can stay. If dismissed the enforcement notices comes into effect. The enforcement notice requires the caravans to be removed 9 month after it comes into effect. The existing injunction prevents any further caravans coming onto the site. We will do everything possible to accelerate this process Cllr Mark Ashwell WBC Evendons Ward This statement has been provided by the Council and has been shared with you without any comments or additions by ourselves We will in addition be taking forward a list of questions to WBC to seek clarification on any and all the outstanding points that came up at the meeting, these questions will include any raised prior to, during and after the meeting. We would also like to thank you for your contributions both before and after the meeting as well as on the night, we will not respond individually to those points but rest assured they will be included in our questions We will continue with updates as and when we have relevant information (good or bad) to share with you Kind Regards John Walker Chairman EARA Ken Rowlands Chairman NAG

Travellers Update 4 May 2015

Posted by Stephen Newton on May 13, 2015 at 12:10 PM Comments comments (0)

Update 4 May 2015


One or our residents, Stephen Newton, represented the NAG at a meeting with other NAG chairs


and the Thames Valley Chief Constable, Rob Frances.


The issue of Blagrove Lane was raised at this meeting and it is worth noting the following points:


- The presence of the travellers and occupation of the field is a Civil dispute not a criminal


one. Even in light of the injunction, it's still a civil matter. The Police therefore have no


powers to move them on.


-  The police stand ready to react to any criminal activity by any party or parties. It was again


confirmed that the Police have increased the patrols and presence in the lane to help


support the neighbourhood and to have a strong visible presence


- The reported incident of a Police Woman being harassed and requiring backup when the


travellers arrived is unsubstantiated. The Chief Constable Rob Frances has personally looked


into this and spoken to everyone and checked logs. No officer reports any incident and there


is no log of a call for backup.



Our thanks to Stephen for this update and please continue to take the usual precautions to keep


both yourself and your property safe.


Kind Regards


John Walker Ken Rowlands


Chairman EARA Chairman NAG

Evendons Primary School news

Posted by Stephen Newton on May 12, 2015 at 9:10 AM Comments comments (0)


Evendons Newsletter, Community Events & Fund, & Crossing Article

There is lots going on at the school and in the local community at the moment that we would like to update you with.


Evendons Parents Newsletter


Please find a copy of the most recent Newsletter in the documents section of this site: just to give you an insight as to what has been going on in school. As you will see, a lot of the messages I mention below have been included in our Newsletter to the Parents.





The school is going to send out two Travel Surveys in the coming months; 1 to existing parents to find out how they are currently getting to school and how they intend to in Sept, 2 to new parents starting in Sept 15 - where are they located, how will they be travelling to school.


Depending on the outcome of these will depend on how many Walking Buses we run and the start locations.


Community Fund


Please can you spare two minutes to click on the link below and vote Evendons Primary School in the Aviva Community Fund? You have to fill in a few details (email and name etc.,) to register, and then click on the link in the email they send you and then search Evendons, and vote for us (you can vote ten times in one go). It won’t cost you anything other than a minute or so of your time, and could help us raise as much as £25,000 to help pay for some fantastic equipment. Please help – and feel free to ask friends and family to help too!!. Flier attached to pass onto friends & family. Vote for us now at https://community-fund.aviva.co.uk/voting/project/view/2335/?AspxAutoDetectCookieSupport=1

There is also an active link in the attached flier.


WBC Leslie Sears Play Equipment Meeting


The council will be hosting a meeting at Evendons for parents and the local community to view and provide feedback on the proposals for the new Leslie Sears Play Equipment. The meeting is set for Tuesday 9 June at 7:15pm – 9:15pm. There will be 6 different companies displaying their proposals for all to view and feedback on.



Update from EARA and NAG 29-04-2015

Posted by Stephen Newton on April 29, 2015 at 10:10 AM Comments comments (0)


Update from EARA and NAG 29-04-2015

Posted on April 29, 2015


We would like to take this opportunity to share with you the actions taken to date in respect of the occupation of land in Blagrove Lane.


The Chairman of both the Neighbourhood Action Group (NAG) and Evendons Area Residents Association (EARA) have agreed that a joint platform and approach will best help the local community.


We have made contact with all of our local councillors and they are all very supportive in trying to resolve as quickly as possible the occupation of this land. The statement below from Inspector John Donachy Neighbourhood Inspector of Thames Valley Police helps to clarify the legal issues


“From a police perspective this appears to be a planning issue for WBC to progress in accordance with any legal powers they may have. Any powers that we would ordinarily use under the Criminal Justice & Public Order Act are not applicable in these circumstances as the travellers clearly have the consent of the landowner to do what they are doing – all be it without the relevant planning consent. TVP will support WBC with any enforcement action that they chose to take.”


Wokingham Borough Council (WBC) served a temporary stop notice which was not adhered to, therefore will continue to use fight the unauthorised change of use of this land to a site of mobile homes for human habitation.


Through our own actions via our local councillors we are chasing WBC for an update on the proposed action in respect of the various breaches that have occurred to date. This information once available to us will be shared with you.


Returning to Thames Valley Police a further extract from their statement is shared with you below


“We will be providing reassurance patrols in the area in the coming days in order to show a strong visible presence in the community. Any fear that local residents have about this incident causing an increase in crime are unfounded. There has been no increase in crime incidents since the weekend.”


We will be delivering a letter update in the next few days to those households closest to the development to ensure everyone is kept informed.


Finally, we understand the concerns that exist within the community but we are doing everything we can to help resolve this issue and to communicate with you all any and every update we get as soon as we can.



Kind Regards


Ken Rowlands : Chairman NAG

John Walker : Chairman EARA

Message from Police: Ref contact over Halloween

Posted by Stephen Newton on October 29, 2014 at 7:05 AM Comments comments (0)

Message sent by

Rebecca Webber (Police, Communications Officer, Corporate Communications)


Halloween and Bonfire Night are two of the busiest nights of the year for Thames Valley Police, especially the officers and staff who work in our Police Enquiry Centres and Control Rooms.

On Halloween we receive an average of 3,700 calls in a day, a large number of them in the evening. This year Halloween falls on a Friday and during half term, so we expect to be busier than ever!

We want everyone celebrating these events to have a good time, however we will not tolerate anti-social behaviour of any kind. To report any issues you may have on Halloween or Bonfire Night, please call the Police Enquiry Centre on our 24-hour non-emergency number - 101. If it is a crime in progress, call 999 immediately.

Remember, you can also report crime online via our crime reporting form and our website FAQ section contains a wealth of advice and information on a huge variety of topics.

If you need to contact us about something more routine, such as to get in touch with your local neighbourhood team or get advice about any policing issue – from fixed penalty notices to police station opening hours - it might be better to wait and contact us at a less busy time.


During both evenings, our neighbourhood policing teams will be undertaking high-visibility patrols to deal with any anti-social behaviour and have also been working with schools and parents to reduce the incidents of nuisance and criminal damage that can happen at this time of year.


Please visit the Thames Valley Police website to download and print off publicity material about Halloween or visit your local station.

Road closures around the Station/Oxford Road from 27 Oct�?�..

Posted by Stephen Newton on October 23, 2014 at 10:10 AM Comments comments (0)

Please see the link below for road closures around the Station/Oxford Road from 27 Oct…..






Posted by Stephen Newton on October 22, 2014 at 6:55 AM Comments comments (0)



By Ted Hodby - Community First Responder


House owners who do not display a house number clearly at the front of their property are putting


their lives and safety at risk in the event of an emergency.


I work as a volunteer Community First Responder (CFR) in the Wokingham area with South Central


Ambulance Service (SCAS). My job is to get to an emergency quickly to treat the patient until the


professionals arrive. All I have to go on is a text message with the address and postcode. All too often


there is just a house name and a postcode which covers a group of houses.


Three times recently in the small hours, an ambulance crew and I have wasted precious time scouring


both sides of a road to find a house with no number where as far as we knew, someone could have been


dying. Without a number, there is no knowing whether you are moving towards the emergency or away


from it. With heart attacks and strokes, fast treatment is crucial. The minutes we waste looking for


houses can make the difference between full recovery and permanent disability or even death.


Even when we have a house number, addresses are not easy to find when the number is in small


numerals on a front door 50 yards down a drive. All the emergency services have the same problem as


well as Royal Mail and other delivery services.


Ideally we need a national system of house numbering (NHNS) . House owners could still use a name as


well if they wished. A house number is permanent and with the post code uniquely identifies that


property. A house name can (and usually is) changed by a new owner. If you agree with this argument, I


urge you to contact your local Borough Councillor or MP.


In the meantime, if your house has a number or name, make sure it is plain to see by someone in a


moving vehicle approaching from either direction. Large clear numerals are best. If your house is set well


back, fix the number to the front gate or the fence – anywhere it can be seen easily and quickly.


If you do have to call an ambulance, open gates and leave lights on. Ideally, leave someone at the front to


flag us down. If it is safe to do so, leave the front door ajar if you have to stay with the patient. If your


property is protected by a coded barrier or gate, it would help if it could be left open, or the barrier left


up. Alternatively have someone waiting at the entrance to let us in. It all saves time.


If your house only has a name and not a number, ask Wokingham Council about having a number


allocated . Failing that, make sure the name of your house is prominent from both directions. It could


save your life. If you do have need to call 999 for an ambulance, a First Responder may well


be dispatched and be at your property within a few minutes, so you may well have to act


Don’t let your number be up for the sake of a house name. Support the call for a National House


Numbering Scheme (NHNS).


Ted Hodby, Community First Responder.

Summer Drink Drive Campaign

Posted by Stephen Newton on July 8, 2014 at 7:55 PM Comments comments (0)

This message has been sent to the NAG by the Thames Valley Police regarding this summers drink drive campaign.

"The National Summer Drink Drive campaign ‘Is it worth the risk?’ saw a small increase in arrests this year compared to last year, leaving 446 people asking ‘Was it worth the risk?’

Between 1 June and 30 June, 240 drivers were arrested across the Thames Valley for driving with excess alcohol, compared to 239 last June.

Of those arrested, 197 were men and 43 were women. This is a decrease of 2 per cent in arrests of men (down from 200 last year) and a 10 per cent increase in arrests of women (up from 39 last year).

In total, 129 of the arrested people have been charged, 71 have been bailed and 40 released with no further action.

The campaign saw police targeting individuals they suspect of driving under the influence of drink or drugs, both on the way home from nights out and the morning after a heavy night.

Chief Superintendent Lucy Hutson from Roads policing said: “This year’s joint anti drink drive campaign with Hampshire Constabulary has concluded. We’ve made 240 arrests across the two forces.

“Each drink driver arrested and taken off the road helps to make our roads safer and prevents potential death or serious injury. Each death and serious injury we prevent stops pain and devastation to an even wider circle of family and friends.”

https://www.youtube.com/embed/JHixeIr_6BM?rel=0&autoplay=1&iv_load_policy=3" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Next a video clip for you – prepared by Canadian Police – It is very clever. I will leave you to work out the point !


I thought it was a really clever way of getting this particular message across !!!!"