Month: July 2017

Shropshire Libraries Consultation – Updated

The day this consultation was due to close Shropshire Council announced here that the deadline has been extended by a week until Friday 13th Oct. The page adds, “This is due to a technical problem beyond our control, with our online survey tool, which is affecting responses being submitted.”
The “Get Involved” page on the Council’s website has been carrying a Newsflash for several days this week with the heading “Issues with SurveyMonkey”.

Residents and organisations across Shropshire are being asked their views to help shape what library services will look like in the future.
Shropshire’s new draft Library Services Strategy, which details proposed plans to ensure all Shropshire residents continue to have access to a library service, was confirmed by Cabinet on 12 July 2017.
The strategy sets out the council’s vision to unlock the huge potential that library services have to impact positively on individuals’ lives. It also recognises that this is a challenging time for library services – traditional usage has been declining in recent years, the way that people use library services is shifting, and the financial situation remains difficult.
For further information about proposals see here
The survey closes on Friday 6 October 2017. During the ten weeks the survey is running, Shropshire Council will also meet with community groups who currently manage some of the libraries, library friends groups, town and parish councils and staff to discuss the proposals and seek feedback.To take part in the survey visit the Council’s Get Involved section. Paper copies of the survey will also be available from libraries and mobile libraries.

Local visits for Garden Club

Hodnet & District Garden Club take advantage of the summer months to include some “out and about” items in their monthly programme.
June saw them visiting Drayton Fields Farm at Wollerton. Mrs Louise Roberts, who had opened her garden for the NGS Open Gardens Scheme the previous weekend, kindly hosted a private visit and refreshments for the Garden Club on 20th June.

The original house was built in the 1840’s and the Wellingtonia trees planted in the grounds at that time are now spectacular. Members were told that the gardens were somewhat lacking in flowers when Mrs Roberts began her work, but that is certainly not the case now. There are well-stocked herbaceous borders, dahlias, and a great variety of roses in the rose garden. There is a well-maintained parterre with gravel paths and tightly pruned hedging, and the garden is so designed that each new “room” entered holds the element of surprise for the visiting explorer, in both the layout and the planting. During a busy season for the avid gardener, it’s always a delight to view the results of someone else’s hard work.

In July Dave Smither and his wife Val hosted an open evening at their home at Marchamley Wood. Over the fifteen years they have lived there, they’ve transformed their half acre of land into a beautiful garden, landscaping their space very creatively to provide a sitting out area, a cottage garden area and a shady courtyard with a water feature, plus a large vegetable garden.
Garden Club Visit July 2017Guests enjoyed home-baking and refreshments plus a guided tour of the garden by David, who spoke about the planting schemes and recounted how the various sectors of the garden had gradually moved from idea to reality. He did not underplay the amount of hard work involved in developing a garden and keeping it well-maintained. Members listened with sympathy to tales of times when things had not turned out according to plan – what happened when the polytunnel overheated, the frustration of rabbits devouring overnight the products of weeks of careful tending, and of course the issues raised by a very dry summer. There was even a round the year visual presentation of the garden in different seasons.

Theft of a Trailer from Peplow Farm

West Mercia Police LogoWest Mercia Police have reported in their latest crime report for North Shropshire the theft of a trailer from Peplow earlier this week. The Ifor Williams trailer was stolen from a farm in The Avenue, between 8.45pm Mon 24 July 2017 and 6am the following morning. Anyone with information that they believe may be connected to this incident, is asked to contact the Police on 101, quoting incident number 0111s 250717.
In the same crime report there are also details of an incident in which a vehicle which had been taken without the owner’s permission was stopped by police on the A53 between Edgebolton and Hodnet at 3.30pm on Mon 24 July. The police report that the driver then ran off, but was pursued and arrested. (Incident number 0496s 240717)

Hodnet Medical Centre – online prescriptions and appointments

The Medical Centre is currently encouraging greater uptake of the Patient Access facility, which enables patients to book appointments and order repeat prescriptions on line any time.
Further information can be found on the flyer below, or by enquiring at the surgery:

Book appointments and order repeat prescriptions online any time, day or night with Patient Access
Book your next appointment online
Request repeat prescriptions
Access a list of your repeat medication and request a repeat prescription.

  • Minimise your trips to the practice – only one visit is needed to collect the prescription
  • Your request is authorised online by the practice, so you know when it’s ready to collect
  • Avoid queues and busy telephone lines.

Safe and secure
All data contained within Patient Access is protected using the highest standard internet security so you can be sure all your personal information is safe and secure.
Patient Access contains links to, a trusted comprehensive source of GP-authored health information leaflets for patients.
How to register
Ask at Reception or telephone the Medical Centre. 
01630 685230

Hodnet Medical Centre

Consultation into proposed parking changes

Car Park GraphicShropshire Newsroom has today (21/7/17) announced a public consultation on the proposal to revised parking arrangements across the county. Whilst no changes are proposed to the Parish Council owned car park in Hodnet, the proposed changes will affect those of us who regularly drive into the nearby market towns of Market Drayton and Whitchurch. The changes will also apply in Shrewsbury.
The 12-week public consultation is open to residents, visitors, businesses, town and parish councils and other organisations are being encouraged to contribute. The consultation closes on 14 October. The parking strategy determines the way that the council manages and runs its car parks and on-street parking, including how and what it charges for parking.
Shropshire Council LogoThe Council, which has carried out a detailed, evidence-based, review to inform the new draft strategy, and has put forward a number of proposals claiming that will they make parking arrangements simpler, clearer and more consistent, as well as helping to reduce congestion and pollution in Shropshire’s market towns.
The consultation is broken down into four parts, as follows:

  1. Proposals regarding ‘linear’ (set price per hour) parking; pricing bands; unrestricted parking; evening parking; loading bays; ‘pop and shop’ parking, and opening hours at Raven Meadows car park in Shrewsbury.
  2. A new policy and tariff framework for weekly tickets, season tickets, residents’ off-street permits, and for coach and HGV parking.
  3. Proposed changes to Shropshire’s Council’s on-street residents’ parking permit scheme.
  4. Proposed changes to the car parking waiver system.

There is no requirement to complete all four parts, respondents can comment on the ones that are of specific interest or relevance to them.
Part 1 also includes the proposal to make the Newport Road car park (at the swimming baths) in Market Drayton a pay and display one. There have been problems there in recent months with long term parking of multiple untaxed vehicles. (See here & here.)
To take part in the consultation, go to Here you will find a summary of the consultation and links to each of the four sections which can be completed on-line.
Background reading is provided in the Cabinet report and appendices for the meeting held on 12 July this year (Item 8). Alternatively, the single item from the agenda and links to the Draft Parking Strategy item and the 12 appendices (all as PDFs) can be found on this page.
Printed copies of the consultation documents will are available from Shropshire Council libraries and customer service points, and on request by calling 0345 678 9028.

Rural Broadband Good News!

Update December 2018 – For the most recent information on local broadband options please go to our dedicated Broadband page.

Whilst areas of Hodnet and Wollerton have benefited from the roll-out of fibre-optic broadband in recent months, other residents are still struggling with low speeds and poor connectivity. Marchamley is apparently too far from the exchange, whilst Peplow suffers from being on the fringes of three different exchanges! (See our previous post here, here and here.) Well, now there may be light at the end of the tunnel – though not of the fibre-optic type!
On Monday (10 July 17) Shropshire Council and Connecting Shropshire announced that Airband Community Internet Ltd is the selected delivery partner for the next phase of Shropshire Council’s superfast broadband programme.
Airband has been providing high-speed wireless broadband access to rural areas since 2002. The technology which to be employed is radio broadband, which works by sending a signal from a transmitter on a mast to a receiver attached to the property. Airband is a Worcester-based company and has accepted a three year contract to deliver superfast broadband to over 14,000 homes and businesses in the Shropshire Council area in the next three years. It is intended that 7,000 of these will be able to access the new service by the end of winter 2017.
AirbandMore technical information is available on Connecting Shropshire’s Contract 3 – Airband page. Radio broadband technology relies on ‘line of sight’, which means that the receiver needs to have a clear view of one of Airband’s transmitters. Wherever possible existing commercial masts and buildings will be used. Some new masts will need to be built and in many cases, new masts will resemble telegraph poles. In the design and planning phase of the project, Airband will employ advanced software to map each property and establish where a connection can be achieved, without the need to complete an on-site survey for each property.
Unlike existing local radio broadband services, Airband’s infrastructure will be available to a number of different internet service providers. Details will no doubt be available in the future.
Airband MapLocal residents and businesses are being asked to register their interest in the Airband roll-out in order to be kept up to date on progress of the scheme. You can do so here on the Airband website. Connecting Shropshire has an interactive map which includes information of the intended coverage in the Shropshire Council area up to 2020. Two layers need to be selected: Airband Coverage and No Planned NGA Coverage. Now enter your post code in the search box and wait for the map to zoom in. (In this author’s experience the data does not always load, so if you don’t see magenta and/or yellow dots – see image on right – please try reloading the map. It should offer you the opportunity to go back to your previous setting.) Magenta dots indicate properties which will be covered by the scheme, whilst yellow dots are meant to signify those which are not. However, given the nature of the technology and that in some places yellow dots are adjacent to magenta ones, it seems that most of the “no planned coverage” dots in this area are due to operator failure rather than telling the truth. If your property is marked in yellow and you live in the Hodnet area, I suggest you register with Airband and discuss the reality of the situation with them. Checking your post code on the Airband Coverage page will provide more accurate information.
Airband will offer different packages (speeds and data usage) but it is not clear yet what the costs will be to customers in Shropshire. See their Packages page for details. They also offer Airband for Business packages. It is also unclear which parts of this area will be included in the first wave of installations, but we suggest that everyone looking for a better rural broadband service register their interest with Airband straight away.
The following video is a promotional one from the Airband website, which explains in very simple terms how the system works.

Hodnet Medical Centre – Accessible Information Standard

Hodnet Medical CentreHodnet Medical Centre has today (12/7/17) added a new page to its website which provides information on the Accessible Information Standard. It states:

The Accessible Information Standard aims to make sure that disabled people have access to information that they can understand and any communication support they might need.
Should you have any requirements or know of a patient who needs support please let the Practice know and we will help provide support whether that is by providing information in large print or putting a patient in touch with British Sign Language (BSL), an interpreter, email or braille.
Further information can be obtained on the NHS website
Charities including Action on Hearing Loss, CHANGE, Sense and the Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB) will also be able to provide further support.
The following Practice leaflets are available in easy read:-
Blood Tests

Please note: The three leaflets linked to above all require a later version of Microsoft Word to access them properly. If you do not have an application which can successfully open such files they can be viewed or converted into other formats on the website. You may need save the files to your computer first if you want to view them on-line.

National Rural Resident Survey

Shropshire Council is encouraging local residents living in rural areas to make their voices heard at national level. A short online survey is being carried out by the Rural Services Network, which campaigns for a fair deal for rural communities. It is aimed at any individuals aged 15 and over, and closes at midnight on Sunday 23 July 2017. (It takes around 15 minutes to complete the survey.)
Details of the survey are given in a Shropshire Newsroom post, which adds that a further aim is to set up a panel of people to be contacted from time to time about their opinions and experiences. (A £10 Amazon voucher is also on offer to 10 respondents chosen at random after the closing date, from those who indicate they are happy to participate in such a panel.)
Rural Services Network is the national champion for rural services, and is seeking to ensure rural areas have a strong voice. The network campaigns for a fair deal for rural communities to maintain their social and economic viability for the benefit of the nation as a whole.
The survey can be completed online by following this link.
The Rural Services Network

Market Drayton Senior Citizens Forum

Market Drayton Senior Citizens Forum is for all senior citizens in the Market Drayton catchment area, not just for those who live in the town. This means they would welcome local residents from the Hodnet area.
Christine Murison, who is a local coordinator and one of the county trustees, writes:

Our Meetings are held at on the first Tuesday of every month at 2 pm in the Beacon Centre, Prospect Road, Market Drayton TF9 3BN (excluding August and December). We are a group who listen, support and represent the views of older people living in Market Drayton and the surrounding area.
When necessary we promote these views at local, county and regionally level. As well as encouraging all points of view we are informal and sociable.
Our meetings usually consist of time for a speaker on topics such as the Library Services, the local re-enactment society or other areas of interest. This is followed with time for refreshments (tea coffee and biscuits) and a raffle to cover costs.Then its time for you to air your views and identify any issues or actions.
During the last year we have had trips out and about and it is anticipated that our bi-monthly lunch club will resume during the winter months There is a Forum Magazine which has a circulation of 3000 postal and email copies currently sent to all members.
Do come and join us. Your voice is needed, with age and experience comes wisdom!

For more information you can contact Christine on 01630-654958 or email. Alternatively visit the Shropshire Seniors website.
Market Drayton Senior Citizens Forum is a member of Shropshire Seniors aka Shropshire Association of Senior Citizens Forums, Charity No 1105512, Company No 04866600.

You're invited out for an Evening Walk

HFG invite you to join them for their annual evening stroll on Wed 12th July.
Meet at the Hodnet Social Club car park at 7.00 pm, from were we will walk down Station Road and pick up the route outlined in our local walks 1 leaflet.
The walk is about 4 miles long and not strenuous. Part is along country lanes. We should be back at the start by 9pm at the latest, where the ‘night owls’ amongst you may wish to round the evening off with a quick drink at the club.
Children and dogs welcome, dogs on leads please.
Suitable footwear advised.

Phone HFG chairman (Steve) 01630 685697 with any queries.