July 2013

Heroes Finale for Shipston Proms 2013

Ultimate Bowie at Shipston PromsNearly two thousand people thronged the streets of Shipston for the Last Night of the Proms on Saturday 6th July, in what was perhaps the hottest Proms ever!

Boasting a fantastic line-up, including this year’s Fame Contest winner, and headline act, Ultimate Bowie, the Last Night was a fitting close to a fortnight of music, marking the 15th year of Shipston Proms.

The evening opened with Stratford Grammar School girl Harriet Kelley, aged 16, from Chipping Campden, who won the solo title at The Proms Fame Contest. Next on was Battered Soul, an eight-piece band of Shipston High School students who won the Fame Contest best group title.

Also on the bill were The Rinky Dinks, a ukulele supergroup who played hip-hop, rock, house, punk and pop.

The David Bowie tribute band proved extremely popular with Bowie’s classic, ‘Heroes’ – a theme of London Olympics 2012 - and ‘Modern Love’ playing out the final hour at midnight.

The Last Night was the last of this year’s impressive proms performances, which included a jazz extravaganza by Midlands Youth Jazz Orchestra and Clare Teal, a concert by Coventry Philharmonic Choir, and a gig by Loyd Grossman’s punk band, The New Forbidden.

One of the many highlights included three performances of Benjamin Britten’s community opera Noye’s Fludde – Noah’s Flood – staged by the Orchestra of the Swan and Shipston Music Society. For more details, please turn to page six.

Mayor, Ronnie Murphy, congratulated the organising committee and performers for putting on such a wonderful event. "I was immensely proud to attend many of the concerts during this year’s Proms. Shipston has showcased classical, rock, pop, jazz, folk, blues, country and choral music performed at the Townsend Hall, in churches, community halls, pubs, hotels and in the street. I would like to thank all those who took part in making this year’s Proms arguably the best yet."

Shipston Town Council and 40 businesses, hotels, restaurants and pubs in the area sponsored the Proms. 

Secure future for Shipston's Stour Enterprise Centre

Stour Enterprise CentreThe future of Shipston’s business and training centre is secure for the immediate future thanks to a renewed focus from a new steering group, which includes representatives from Stour United Businesses, Stratford District Council and Coventry University.

The centre’s future was in doubt. However, Shipston’s business community rallied in response to the closure threat, having come to rely on the centre as an important venue for training, networking and co-working, particularly for small businesses in the area. A new structure has now been agreed, with SUBs taking a more active role in the management and marketing of the centre.

SUBs chair, Tina Cook, said "I am delighted we have been able to reach an agreement which gives the SEC a positive future and retains what has become a valuable resource for Shipston’s business community. We have exciting plans to build on the successful training and events that have been held at the SEC to date and I’m looking forward to getting started."

One of the first priorities is to progress plans with Coventry University to secure funding for a full time centre manager. In the meantime, work is being done to bring the centre’s website up to date and arrange a new set of training courses.

Stratford District Council leader, Chris Saint, said, "I have always felt the SEC is an important resource, not only for Shipston businesses but for entrepreneurs throughout the Stour Valley. I am pleased we have been able to help secure the centre’s future."

To find out more, visit www.stourenterprise.co.uk 

August Forum now available to download

The August 2013 edition of the Shipston Forum is now available to download. Click here to download the PDF to find out about the latest local news and events.

Warwickshire County Council's Councillor Grant Fund

The launch of Warwickshire County Council's Councillor Grant Fund takes place today, Monday 22 July. The scheme is administered locally by the County Council's Stratford Area Office.

The Councillors Grant Fund is designed to help communities to help address issues of local concern to them. It is primarily aimed at community and voluntary organisations and provides grants of £5,000 per councillor (ideally up to 4 projects per councillor in order to keep administration costs to a minimum, but there is flexibility in this if there is a significant demand for more projects to be funded) for small scale projects that meet community needs within the district of Stratford-on-Avon. Bids should be supported by the councillor for the electoral division in which the project is based.

Town and parish councils are also eligible to apply to the fund for a community project, but this will be at the discretion of the councillor and will vary according to the preference of the councillor.

Full details about the fund are set out in the application form and guidance notes, which can be downloaded from the VASA website:


If you require hard copies of the application form then please contact Amanda Wilson-Patterson or Anita Kendall using the contact details below.

The deadline for the return of completed applications to the Area Office is Friday 11 October (5pm). They will then be evaluated and recommendations made to the relevant councillor.

A funding workshop for all prospective applicants to the fund will take place on Tuesday 17 September, 11 am at Stratford District Council Offices, the aim of which will be to provide support and guidance to community and voluntary organisations (including town and parish councils) on the eligibility of their project for the fund, along with signposting to other suitable sources of funding.

If you require any further information please contact Amanda Wilson Patterson by email amandawilsonpatterson@warwickshire.gov.uk or telephone 07780 995817. Alternatively please telephone Anita Kendall on 01926 456102.


Residents in Shipston-on-Stour are being invited to have their say on a forthcoming new homes development on the redundant IMI Norgren factory site on Campden Road. CALA Homes is holding a series of workshops on Thursday 8th August and Saturday 17th August to get feedback and input from the local community as it starts to put together the detail of the scheme.

The workshops will provide the opportunity for local people to meet the project team and provide their thoughts on the detail of the scheme, including the design of the homes, the layout of the site and the mix of houses.

Places on the workshops are limited and anyone interested in taking part should register their interest at www.cala.co.uk/shipstononstour by 5pm on 31st July. 

Planning rules change

There have been a number of recent changes to the rules surrounding planning applications. This may be the dullest posting we've ever made, but it's worth a read if you're interested in local planning rules:

1          CHANGE OF USE


From 30 May owners of underutilised properties will have more opportunity to secure tenants whilst those looking to dispose of their interests may have access to a wider market of prospective purchasers.   After this date the Town and Country Planning (General Permitted Development) (Amendment) (England) Order 2013 will permit the change of use of class B1(a) offices to class C3 residential dwellings.  There will be no need to obtain express planning permission for this change of use. 


Other development set out in the Order which no longer requires planning permission includes the following:- 


changes from a number of commercial uses to either retail, financial and professional services, restaurants and cafes or business use for a period of two years from the date on which the change of use occurs in a move that seeks to encourage the reuse of existing buildings;

change of use of agricultural buildings to uses comprising retail, financial and professional services, restaurants and cafes, business, storage and distribution, hotel and assembly/leisure uses in an effort to boost rural enterprise;

until 30 May 2016, increasing the maximum size threshold for industrial/warehouse building extensions to up to 1,000 sqm or 50% of the gross floorspace of the original building (whichever is the lesser); and

until 30 May 2016, increasing the maximum size threshold for retail, catering, financial and professional services and office building extensions to up to 100 sqm or 50% of the gross floorspace of the original building (whichever is the lesser).  

All of the amendments set out above are subject to certain conditions prescribed in detail. 




As from the 30 May 2013 planning permission is no longer required for single storey rear extensions with length up to 6m (attached houses) or 8m (detached houses) to be erected during the 3 year period from 30/05/2013 to 30/05/2016 on houses that are not in Conservation Areas nor on a site of special scientific interest.

Anyone proposing a 3m-6m or 4m-8m extension will have to notify their local authority before starting works and provide the following information:

“- a) a written description of the proposed development including—

— (i) how far the enlarged part of the dwellinghouse extends beyond the rear wall of the original dwellinghouse;

— (ii) the maximum height of the enlarged part of the dwellinghouse; and

— (iii) the height of the eaves of the enlarged part of the dwellinghouse;

- (b) a plan indicating the site and showing the proposed development;

- (c) the addresses of any adjoining premises;

- (d) the developer’s contact address; and

- (e) the developer’s email address if the developer is content to receive communications electronically.”

The local authority will need to consult only the immediately adjoining premises with a minimum consultation period of 21 days. (Ward Members and Parish/Town Councils are not to be consulted).  The legislation sets out specific requirements as to the information that must be provided by the consultation letter including a description of the length, maximum height, and eaves height of the extension.

Where any owner or occupier of any adjoining premises objects to the proposed development, then “the prior approval of the local planning authority is required as to the impact of the proposed development on the amenity of any adjoining premises”. To assess this impact, the local authority “may require the developer to submit such further information regarding the proposed development as the local planning authority may reasonably require in order to consider the impact of the proposed development on the amenity of any adjoining premises”.  When assessing this impact, the local authority will need to:

“- (a) take into account any representations made as a result of the [consultation process]; and

- (b) consider the amenity of all adjoining premises, not just adjoining premises which are the subject of representations.”

The legislation states that the development shall not be begun before the occurrence of one of the following:

“- (a) the receipt by the developer from the local planning authority of a written notice that their prior approval is not required;

- (b) the receipt by the developer from the local planning authority of a written notice giving their prior approval;

- (c) the expiry of 42 days following the date on which the information [required for the notification] was received by the local planning authority without the local planning authority notifying the developer as to whether prior approval is given or refused.”

The legislation requires that any 3m-6m or 4m-8m extension “shall be completed on or before 30th May 2016″.


The Townsend Hall hosts a Jazz Extravaganza

Townsend Hall, Shipston

A packed Townsend Hall was treated to a memorable concert of music presented by the Internationally acclaimed Midland Youth Jazz Orchestra and the equally well known Clare Teal.

Music by Matt Cattingub and Pat  Williams started the  concert followed by Tom Coppins ‘Street Scene’ featuring lead trombone Tom Coppins, this was then followed with a Flugel solo by Nick Dewhurst and music by Bob Florence the MYJO finished the first part of the concert with the well known arrangement by Sammy Nestico of ‘A Tribute to The Duke’.

Clare Teal in her own magic way treated the audience with her interpretation of ‘That Old Black Magic’, ‘Skylark’, ‘Cheek to Cheek’, and ‘Folks Who Live on the Hill’ all wonderfully backed by John Ruddicks’ Midland Youth Jazz  Orchestra.

The second part of the concert featured music by Gordon Goodwin, Slow Boat to China arranged by Martin Williams featuring Nick Dewhurst and Ben Gaskin. Alex Woods (alto) featured in the Pat Metheney piece ‘Always and Forever’,The Orchestra finished with music from Bob Florence and ‘Rhapsody in Blue’ Gordon Goodwins arrangement of the Gershwin classic.

Clare’s programme included ‘Bright Side of the Road’, ‘Get Happy’,’I Just Wanna Make Love To You’ ‘Feeling Good and Messing with Fire’

The audience, not content with all the great music they had heard, applauded for several minutes and were rewarded with 2 curtain calls.

Comments after wards included ‘the band is so talented that, even to someone who’s music of choice would not be a big band, they are exciting and thrilling.’ ‘I thought Clare had an amazing voice which coupled with her tremendous personality made the whole event an evening not to be forgotton.’

Chairman of the trustees Geoff Ridgway commented it was the best concert the trustees had organised to date and had raised valuable funds for the restoration project and thanked all those who had supported the Townsend Hall’s efforts.


Anne Sankey Award for voluntary service in Shipston

Nominations for the Anne Sankey Award for voluntary service by individuals in Shipston are open.  You can download the form here.

Last year's winner was Stuart Eastbury.  The 21-year-old has been a member of the town’s St John Ambulance, a fund-raiser for the Warwickshire and Northampton Air Ambulance, and a co-ordinator for the First Responders in Shipston.

If you know someone who'd be equally desrving of recognition then please fill in the form and drop it off at New Clark House.