Shipston welcomes new councillors
From 8th May, Shipston Town Council will welcome two new faces, following the departure of councillors Arthur Ivens and Philip Vial, both of whom have stepped down from the council. Marianne Westwood and Kim Perry will join the council later this month (May). To find out more about your new councillors, see page 3.
With the recent boundary changes splitting the town into two wards, councillors now represent either the north or south ward. Councillors Ian Cooper, Ali Henderson, Peter White and Fay Ivens all stood in the North ward, with remaining councillors representing the south. No voting took place as there were the same number of candidates as there were seats.
The first meeting of the new council will be on 11th May at 7pm, where the Town Crier will welcome all attendees and the new Mayor of Shipston will be elected.
Shipston Town Council supports plans which pave the way for a new medical centre
Long awaited proposals for a new medical centre to cater for the growing population of Shipston and surrounding villages have moved a step closer. Plans now being progressed could see the centre built on the Campden Road.
Shipston Medical Centre has been offered land on the Ainscough Strategic Land (ASL) site, north of Campden Road, which was granted planning permission on appeal for a supermarket, petrol station, extra care housing and new homes. The land was offered on condition that Stratford District Council gives permission for 95 new homes on another site, south of Campden Road, which has since been granted by SDC’s planning committee.
Following a lengthy discussion at its meeting in April, Shipston Town Council voted to support ‘in principle’ ASL’s latest planning application on the south of Campden Road, on the condition that land previously earmarked for a community building on the ‘supermarket’ site, would be given to the medical centre. Under the terms of the agreement, development on the south site will not be able to begin until the site identified for the medical centre has been transferred.
Councillors raised concerns both about the speed of the proposal and the prospect of more houses for Shipston, on top of other large schemes proposed or approved. Overall, however, the town council felt there was a wider benefit to the community of accepting the proposal.
Chair of the planning working group, Martin Ferrier, said: “We recognise that this is an emotive issue and there are no easy answers. It is clear that Shipston Medical Centre will not be able to continue to provide the current level of services without a new building and having considered all the arguments, the town council believes, on balance, that the proposal on the table is the best chance we have of securing the long term future of GP services for the town.”
ASL is only providing the land for the medical centre and associated parking. Shipston Medical Centre will still need to apply for funding from NHS England to build the centre. Dr David Williams, GP Partner, said: “We are grateful to town and district councillors and our patients for their support in helping us take a big step forward in our plans to build a new medical centre.”
Work will now begin on securing the vital funding from NHS England to enable a new centre to be built.
Shipston confirms its Centenary Field
As part of Shipston’s WW1 Centenary commemorations, the town’s fallen during the conflict are to be remembered in the Gyratory Garden, which is to become a Centenary Field. The creation of Centenary Fields is a national move to identify places in local towns and villages where people can remember the sacrifices made by soldiers in the line of duty.
During WWI, 36 Shipston men fell and each one will have a terracotta coloured paver with his name and date of death inscribed upon it. These will be placed in the flower bed in the centre of the Gyratory garden.
Plans for installing the pavers are under way including other necessary associated work, and the hope is that it will be complete in time for a dedication ceremony to take place in mid to late May. Please look out for the date and time in the May issue of the Forum and council website.
The Shipston branch of the Royal British Legion is calling on as many people as possible to attend the dedication ceremony to show their support for these local soldiers who made the ultimate sacrifice.
The Legion is urgently seeking offers to sponsor, or pay for, a paver, costing £18 each. If you would like to be associated with this event and with a Shipston soldier of the Great War, please contact branch chair, Richard Adams on 662328 or firstname.lastname@example.org as soon as possible.