Planners Likely to Refuse Supermarket


An independent retail advisor published a report last week estimating the proposed supermarket could take up to 90 per cent of trade from the town centre - but those in favour of the store say there was nothing independent about it.

In Dr Richard Doidge’s report, prepared for the planning case officer Louise Koelman, he suggests the development - which includes a new supermarket, petrol station and housing -  should be refused on retail grounds because it would have a “significant adverse impact” on Shipston’s town centre.

And controversially, in an e-mail seen by the Heraldthis week, Ms Koelman said: “In light of the comments from our retail consultant, we are likely to be recommending refusal with respect to the supermarket impact on Shipston-on-Stour.

“I must stress however that until my committee report is finalised, that this is my initial assessment.”

But her initial assessment shocked those in Shipston in favour of a supermarket.

Jeff Kenner, the new Labour district councillor for the town and pro-supermarket, said: “I am surprised that they’re doing that. As I understand it they would not normally indicate their decision before the report.”

Cllr Kenner went further and questioned the independence of Dr Doidge’s report, which concluded that a new supermarket is likely to lead to a “spiral of decline” of the town centre’s shops.

“I have serious concerns about this retail review which only takes into account the views of objectors to the supermarket proposal and falls short of an independent retail impact assessment.”

“I have asked the council to provide me with an explanation of the brief given to Dr Doidge and the reasons why he has only taken into account the views of objectors to the proposal. This inevitably gives the impression that the report is one-sided.

“I have also identified a number of inaccuracies in the report and have concerns about reliance on data that is out of date.”

The debate on whether to build a supermarket on greenfield land off Campden Road has been raging in the town since Ainscough Strategic Land applied for the development in February this year.

The whole town has been divided on the issue, sparking several ferocious public meetings, and pushing the date of the decision on the application further back and back.

The issue has sparked two rival groups, the anti-supermarket Shipston Heart Alive campaign (SHAC), and the pro-supermarket Shipston Needs a Supermarket (SNAS).

After Dr Doidge’s report, William Trevithic from SHAC said: “This report confirms the concerns we have been voicing for many months - it is the bigger picture that people campaigning for the supermarket need to see.

“I am sure nobody in Shipston wants to see the town centre wither and die, whether or not they are in favour of the proposed supermarket.”

But Rob O’Malley, a supporter of SNAS said it was totally unacceptable that the findings of Dr Doidge’s report were only passed to the anti-supermarket brigade.

“This process should be transparent for all if we are to believe in the concept of localism,” he said.

“Even by Dr Doidge’s own admission, the research was conducted at his desk in Surrey and only objectors to the proposals were consulted.

“There are as many supporters as there are objectors and their views are just as valid. “The report is full of inaccuracies and fails to challenge the fundamental finding that 72 per cent of Shipston people shop out of town. I find it inexplicable that the council may recommend refusal of the application based on Dr Doidge’s review.”

Stratford District Council's planning committee (east) will meet on Thursday January 24th at 6pm in Shipston High School to consider the planning application.

From the Stratford Herald.

Christmas Site Live

files/stc/news-assets/img/Christmas-Wallpaper.jpgThe brand new look to Shipston Online is now live!  You will find lots of festive goodies and lots of new features too!  We would like to take this opportunity to wish you all a very Merry Christmas, and we really hope you enjoy the new site!

Special Guests Welcome

files/stc/news-assets/img/4812_shipston_high_school_awards_019_480_Landscape.jpgShipston High School welcomed three special guests to an awards evening to present more than 120 prizes to both past and present students. During the awards evening the school celebrated an outstandingly successful year, including its pupils’ achievements in the 2012 examinations. The three guests of honour, rocket engineer Daniel Jubb and former Shipston school students, twins Hattie and Sophie Taylor, presented many varied awards and special prizes before giving speeches to the audience. Mr Jubb spoke enthusiastically about the Bloodhound project to break the land speed record, and his passion for British engineering which he described as a “brilliant adventure”. 

The vote of thanks was given by head prefects Stephen Neath and Daisy Dingley, who reminded the audience that the Shipston High School badge is featured on the tail fin of the Bloodhound.

Headteacher Jonathan Baker said: “Each of our three guests of honour was inspirational in his or her own ways. They helped to make it a very memorable evening which we always celebrate in a special Shipston way.

Particularly pleasing was to have so many leavers coming back to join us and hearing how well they are all doing since they have moved on to sixth form or to college.”

Shipston Supermarket: THE DEBATE


Contraversial plans to build a supermarket on the edge of Shipston-on-Stour was unanimously on Thursday night (24/01/13) at a lengthy and heated meeting in the town.  All ten members of a planning committee voted against the proposal to build a supermarket, a petrol station, and housing, on greenfield land in between the Norgren site and the town.


Ainscough Strategic Land have applied for outline planning permission to build a supermarket on the land off Campden Road on the edge of town, and the issue has mixed opinion in Shipston.

Alongside the supermarket, Ainscough have also proposed building a petrol station, a retirement development comprising 80 cottages and 50 apartments, as well as 54 residential homes.  Two rival groups evist in the town and the debate has been raging for months. 

Shipston Heart Alive (SHAC) are against over-development in the town, believe the supermarket would kill off the town centre, and disagree with building a major development on a greenfield site.

Shipston Needs a Supermarket (SNAS) argue the majority of people in the town do not want to travel to Stratford to do their main shop, and say the small Co-operative stores are too expensive.

Traffic Wardens


A number of you have written in or tweeted that you would like to see more done to prevent cars parking on the double yellow lines in the High Street.  Many are saying that in parking here the High Street is clogged up and it makes it very difficult to park and leave a parking space in the town.

Ilmington Get Outstanding

We are pleased to announce that Ilmington Primary School were awarded 'Oustanding' under the new framework after its recent OFSTED inspection.

Date Set for Crucial Vote


Ainscough Strategic Land have applied for outline planning permission to build a supermarket on the land off Campden Road on the edge of town, and the issue has polarised opinion in Shipston.

Alongside the supermarket, Ainscough have also proposed building a petrol station, a retirement development comprising 80 cottages and 50 apartments, as well as 54 residential homes.

Two rival groups have been set up in the town and the debate has been raging for months.

Shipston Heart Alive (SHAC) are against over-development in the town, believe the supermarket would kill off the town centre, and disagree with building a major development on a greenfield site.

Shipston Needs a Supermarket (SNAS) argue the majority of people in the town do not want to travel to Stratford to do their main shop, and say the small Co-operative stores are too expensive.

Stratford District Council’s planning committee are meeting at 6pm on Thursday 24th January at Shipston High School.

More Flood Protection?


With the ever uboredictable weather we seem to get, is it time to look closer at the effect of flooding in Shipston.  What do you think Shipston should do about it's vulnerability to flooding, or do you think it's not even really an issue and just a freak of nature? 

Shipston By-Election Result

Three candidates contested the seat at the Shipston ward for Stratford-on-Avon District Council on Thursday 29 November.

The by-election follows the resignation of Jonathan Gullis (Conservative) in October.

The result is:

  • Jeffrey Simon Kenner (Labour) 613 votes - elected
  • Marion Lowe (Conservative) 431 votes
  • Laura Elizabeth Nelson (Liberal Democrat) 575 votes

The electorate for the Shipston ward is 4110

Turnout for this election was 39.56%.

Turnout for the last contested election in Shipston in May this year was 42.7%

The current political make-up of the District Council's 53 seats is:

  • Conservatives 32 seats
  • Liberal Democrats 16 seats
  • Independents 2 seats
  • Stratford First Independents 2 seats
  • Labour 1 seat

Mayor's Report, December

files/stc/news-assets/img/Fay Ivens.jpg

It was a delight to be invited to present the trophies at the Shipston on Bloom annual Presentation Evening to the winners of the town garden competition.I would like to thank the committee and helpers for all of the time and hard work they put in to ‘Keep Shipston Blooming’---without a doubt the beautiful floral displays around our town keep it looking so vibrant.

I spent a fun morning at Shipston Primary School as a judge at the ‘Bake Off’—some of the cakes which the pupils had made were sensational---the only disappointing part for me was not being able to actually taste any!! I am looking forward to returning to School later this month when l begin my ‘Meet the Mayor’ sessions, starting with year 6.

The Town Band Centenary Concert at the Townsend Hall was a truly wonderful occasion.The Band played some superb music featuring various pieces that they have performed in their repertoire over the years. It was great to see past conductors up on the stage along with the very talented Kirsty Abbots.The junior band were fantastic and the finale when all past members joined in was an amazing end to the evening.

Many congratulations to Shipston Sports Club for organising such a superb Bonfire and Fireworks display.The scene was set with a beautiful moonlit night before l lit the bonfire along with the Town Crier and the stunning firework display lit up the sky.

On Remembrance Sunday Shipston Town Band led the parade followed by members of Shipston branch of the Royal British Legion and other Shipston organisations. l felt privileged and proud to be part of the parade in my role as Mayor and honoured to lay a wreath on behalf of Shipston Town Council and the townspeople of Shipston at the War Memorial.The packed service at St Edmunds Church was very emotive and emotional as we remembered by name all those from Shipston who gave up their lives at War.      

We have been proud to represent Shipston at the Judicial Service of the High Sheriff of Warwickshire and the Civic Service of the Mayor of Leamington.We also attended along with the Deputy Mayor a Drum Head Service at Whitnash

We have also attended the Civic Dinners of the Mayor of Southam and the Chairman of Stratford District Council.

Victorian Evening

files/stc/news-assets/img/xmas-bunting.jpgThe Rotary Victorian Evening has become an integral part of the Shipston-on-Stour calendar. Fun for all the family, good for local shops and businesses and an important part of the fund raising plans of many local charities and good causes.

This year will be no exception with special guests Paralympic Gold Medallist James Roe and torchbearer Camilla Hadland opening the proceedings. There will be the usual market stalls and many others. Street entertainment including Fire Eaters, Ukelele Band, Punch and Judy, Face Painting and don’t forget children FATHER CHRISTMAS WILL BE IN HIS GROTTO. Shops and Businesses in the Town will be participating in the ‘Diamond Jubilee’ Themed Best Dressed Window competition and much more.


Flooding hits South Warwickshire


Four-hundred sandbags were put down in Shipston-on-Stour as a precautionary measure, and residents in the town watched the flood slowly creep up from the river.

The Environment Agency issued a red flood warning for the River Stour from Tredington to Clifford Chambers, and Roger Booth, who moved into The Old Mill in Shipston just ten days ago was forced to move upstairs after his new property flooded.

Several schools were closed because of the floods, including Wellesbourne Primary School, Welcombe Hills School in Stratford-upon-Avon, Tysoe Primary School, Shipston Primary School, River House School in Henley-in-Arden, Newbold and Tredington Primary School, Haselor School in Alcester, Great Alne Primary School, Ettington Primary School, and Acorns Primary School in Shipston.

In Stratford, reports of dangerous conditions on the roads were received as early as 7am this morning, on the A46 bridge on Bishopton Lane.

Deep standing water on Western Road, Stratford, impaired driving conditions later on in the day, and Anne Hathaway's Cottage in Shottery was forced to close.

The Environment Agency issued a red flood warning for the River Alne near Henley. Tanworth Lane and Camp Lane were particularly vulnerable after 27 millimetres of rain in 12 hours.

Several roads were shut throughout the area. Walton Lane in Wellesbourne, The Fosse Way at Halford, Bearley Road in Aston Cantlow, the A4189 New Road in Henley-in-Arden and Fulready Road in Ettington all closed as a result of flooding.

According to Warwickshire Police, other areas hit with floods include the A435 near Kings Coughton, Watery Lane in Sherbourne, Dark lane in Hatton, and Gosport Lane, Mill Street, and Walton Lane in Kineton.

The Met Office issued a severe weather warning for the West Midlands and rain is expected to continue to fall until tomorrow.

BBC Midlands Today weather presenter Shefali Oza said: "We're over the worst of it today - it's clearing eastwards. But there'll be even heavier rain tomorrow. It'll be wet and windy."

St. Edmund's Food Bank


If you find you have run short of food, and the cupboard is bare, then please come and talk to us as St Edmunds Food Bank on Wednesday Mornings at St Edmunds Church, Shipston, 10.00am to 12.00pm.

We can help you with an emergency food pack to help you through a crisis – such as unexpected bills, benefit payment delay, job loss, or on a low income.  Wednesday mornings are our coffee mornings and you would be made very welcome to come and join us for a coffee
and a chat- there is a children’s corner with plenty of toys for toddlers – and collect a bag of food.

We would gratefully like to receive any donated stock for the food bank, but would particularly appreciate some of the following:

UHT Milk or dried milk
Fruit juice (long life carton)
Pasta sauces
Sponge pudding (tinned)
Tomatoes (tinned)
Rice pudding (tinned)
Tea bags or coffee
Instant mash potato
Rice or pasta
Tinned meat or pies
Tinned fish
Tinned vegetables – potatoes, mixed veg, sweet corn etc
Tinned fruit
Jam or marmalade
Biscuits or snack bars

Shipston Man Critical After Nighclub Assault


A MAN is in a critical condition after being assaulted outside a nightclub in Cheltenham.  The incident happened at around 2.30am this morning outside Moo Moo's Nightclub on Regent Street.

The 21-year-old man from Shipston suffered serious head injuries and was taken to Cheltenham General Hospital for treatment, he has since been transferred to Frenchay Hospital in Bristol.  An 18-year-old from Moreton, has been arrested on suspicion of assault and remains in police custody in Cheltenham.  Officers want to speak to anyone who witnessed the incident or anyone who was in Moo Moo’s Nightclub shortly before the incident took place.  Anyone with information that could help the investigation should call police on 101 quoting incident 24 of November 13.

You can also remain anonymous and contact the charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111, or via crimestoppers-uk.org. In some cases Crimestoppers offer rewards of up to £1000 where information leads to a conviction. 

Mayor's Report, November

files/stc/news-assets/img/Fay Ivens.jpg

The month began with an invitation to an evening reception at Shire Hall,Warwick by the Chairman of Warwickshire County Council..This was a very interesting experience as we were also able to have a tour around the vast building ,taking in the all of the magnificent rooms,although looking at the old Magistrates Court and the underground cells was creepy,damp and cold!

Along with the Deputy Mayor Cllr. Ronnie Murphy, l attended the Mayoress of Stratford ‘At Home’ at Stratford Town Hall.This was a very decedent and delightful occasion when our best hats were worn---we even had our photos taken by some American tourists as we were going in.

It was a delight to be invited to a concert by Warwickshire Boys Choir by Shipston Music Society.It was both inspirational and joyous to witness such a talented choir of young boys

As a member of Shipston W.I. I was privileged to attend the historic occasion of their 90th Biirthday Celebration on October 3rd which was also attended by guests from Warwickshie Federation,Stour Valley W.I and Brailes W.I.I was very touched that the celebration cake had been made without alcohol so that l was able to have a slice!

We attended the A.G.M.of Warwickshire Young Carers at Warwick.It is good to know that young people who find themselves in this position have so much help and support during difficult times in their lives.

We have also represented Shipston at the ‘Civic Services’ of the Chairman of Warwick District Council and the Mayor of Alcester.

I look forward to welcoming all towns people to Shipstons Civic Service and Patronal Festival on Sunday 25th November at St. Edmunds Church at 10am.I would like to invite all recipients of the Anne Sankey Award to attend proudly wearing your medals.

Shipston Junior Band Seeks Recruits


Shipston Town Band’s Junior section has been offering youngsters the chance to play brass instruments for years and it’s now looking for more budding musicians to join the crew.

This is often where young people get their first chance to try a brass instrument and where talent is nurtured until players are ready to move on to one of the senior bands. Shipston’s Junior Band is open to anyone wishing to take up a brass instrument and welcomes new players of any ages.

Helper, Heidi Ellis, said "Our last few beginners have just moved up to join the junior band section so we are keen to encourage some new recruits to along and join us. We teach how to read music and the band will lend an instrument free of charge to anyone who is interested in learning."

The band meets on Monday nights in the band room alongside the allotments.  Complete beginners can come along at 6.30pm for half an hour’s tuition and stay on to join in with the rest of the band as they feel more confident.

Older children that already play an instrument are also encouraged to join – there are vacancies in the bass, horn and trombone sections for those that fancy trying a bigger instrument. The Junior Band gets involved in local events and recently performed to an excellent standard during the Shipston Proms.

If you or your child would like to have a try, contact Tim Wilson on 01608 665013 or go along at 6.30pm on a Monday night to find out more.

Neighbourhood Plan Lauch


The creation of a Neighbourhood Plan to guide development in Shipston is set to begin this month, with the launch meeting taking place from 4pm to 8.30pm on 24th October at the Townsend Hall.  The meeting will provide an opportunity to share information about why the Town Council has decided to develop a Neighbourhood Plan, what the process will involve, the timetable for completing it and information about how residents and local businesses can take part.

It is essential that the plan is developed in a fair and collaborative way and it will therefore be overseen by an impartial and independent steering group. The aim is to end up with a plan that is accepted as part of the Local Development Framework, giving Shipston a genuine voice in the planning process.

Town Mayor, Fay Ivens, said "planning has become an incredibly emotive issue in Shipston. This plan is not about debating specific applications – it is about reaching a collective view on what is needed for Shipston.  I encourage everyone to get involved to help deliver a plan which meets the needs of the whole community.”

Youth Club Re-Launched


Shipston youth club saved from closure by members of the community has celebrated its relaunch.

Local youngsters were joined by Stratford MP Nadhim Zahawi, town mayor Fay Ivens and supporters to mark the new era of Shipston Youth Club on Friday afternoon.  The future of the club looked bleak after Wawickshire County Council announced it would be withdrawing funding as part of £3.5 million cutbacks in its youth services budget.

But supporters determined to maintain the club formed their own volunteer management committee to take it over and have been working tirelessly – with support from Shipston High School – to raise funds.  Reverend Daniel Pulham, chairman of Shipston Youth Club management committee, said: “I have been involved for the past 10 years and we’ve got the best building and equipment we have had in at least a decade.

“It’s a great place for young people to go and spend time.”  Over the summer the club building, on Darlingscote Road, has had a £35,000 refurbishment funded by the county council.

It has also had repairs to the pool table, a new data projector funded by Shipston Rotary Club and a new table tennis table.  The club offers two junior clubs, for year sevens and eights, which meet from 7pm to 9pm on alternate Tuesdays during the school term, as well as a senior club for year nine and up that runs from 7.30pm to 9.30pm on Wednesdays.