March Message from Cath Holloway, the Village Agent

Not sure who to turn to? Village Agents are a charity that work with individuals and social groups to give confidential support and advice. We can enable people to be more independent in their home, manage personal finances, care for family members and advise on just about anything! You can find Cath at local coffee mornings and events. Call and email me. (Enable Javascript to see the email address) 07968521746

Stories are an amazing way to enrich our lives. Whether we watch them as a TV drama, share a sofa and a book with the younger members of the family or curl up and read or listen to a talking book alone.

There are plenty of exciting ways to enjoy stories at libraries around the county too. Try a shared reading group, where poems and stories are read aloud together, followed by discussion into which everyone is encouraged to participate. Try Chard library on Mondays 1.30-3pm, Yeovil is on Wednesday 11-12.30 pm and Wincanton (fortnightly) Tuesday 2-3.15pm.

If you are unable to get to the library, you can ask for a volunteer to visit you on a regular basis, bringing books of your choice and stopping for a cuppa. It is a lovely volunteer position to take too. Contact me or your local library if you are interested.

Libraries often have events and groups such as author talks and children story times. Check out local adverts and online. Libraries will also support you with internet access which is necessary for those changing to universal credit and to compare your utility bills. They are also a great place to find local adverts. It is a safe and welcoming place to visit for all. They are also warm in the winter!

Ensure that you have your say in the future of your local library by joining one of the consultations at Crewkerne 9th March Henhayes 10am, 11am, 12.00 hourly sessions, Ilminster Saturday 10th February 9.30-10.30 and 11.30 hourly sessions, For Martock and South Petherton library visit Martock library on 28th February at 10am,11am and 12am for hourly sessions, Somerton on Sat 17th February 9.30, 10.30 and 11.30 am. Yeovil Sunningdale library is at the Monmouth Hall 9th March 9.30 -12.30 for a drop in session.



Arc Homes application refused !

Arc Homes, the developers at the Stanchester site (Shuldam’s Fields), recently put in an application to the District Council to be released from building six affordable housing units and from paying a developer’s contribution of just over £110,000 towards community facilities. Their reason was that the site is commercially unviable.

The Parish Council are pleased to announce that the District’s Area North Committee have supported our village in rejecting this application. We had always maintained a very strong opposition to Arc Homes’ attempt to be relieved of community responsibility. We attended the Committee meeting on Wednesday 27 September to speak on behalf of our residents and to put forward our technical reasons why this application should be refused. Our new statement can viewed by clicking here. We understand that the District took expert legal advice and research and as a result rejected Arc’s application.

A word of caution, before we all break open the champagne! Arc Homes have the right – and probably will – appeal against the decision. Area North form0ally advised Arc Homes that they expect them to consider re-negotiating the Section 106 obligation, rather than just appealing for the decision to be simply overturned, sending a very strong message to the developers that community interests are always important in new developments. Let’s keep our fingers crossed.

The Parish Council is proud to have been part of such a very positive first step.

Barbara Brooks
Stoke sub Hamdon Parish Council
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Sarah Moore
Parish Clerk
Stoke sub Hamdon Parish Council
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