Broadwindsor Cricket Club’s Celebrations Cancelled

A press release on the Club’s Twitter account read:

Due to COVID 19 cases from the away team this Saturday’s all star game at Broadwindsor CC has been cancelled. We hope everyone involved is ok and makes a speedy recovery. Thank you all for continuing to support us and we will see you all in the new season.

This was quickly responded to by the opposing team, Heaven Help Us Cricket Club: “We shall play next season !

Earlier in the week, published details of the proposed celebration. Read more HERE.
A speedy recovery to Heaven Help Us Cricket Club is reiterated by


Today Is World Suicide Prevention Day

Every year on 10th September since 2003, organisations and communities around the world come together to raise awareness of how we can create a world where fewer people die by suicide.

In the UK, men are three times as likely to die by suicide than women. In the Republic of Ireland, the rate is four times higher among men than women.  While there has been a reduction in the number of people completing suicide over the last ten years, the numbers are still worryingly high.

One in every 100 deaths worldwide is the result of suicide. It can affect every one of us. Each and every suicide is devastating and has a profound impact on those around them. However, by raising awareness, reducing the stigma around suicide and encouraging well-informed action, we can reduce instances of suicide around the world. World Suicide Prevention Day is an opportunity to raise awareness of suicide and to promote action through proven means that will reduce the number of suicides and suicide attempts globally.

Suicidal thoughts are complex. The factors and causes that lead to suicide are complex and many. No single approach works for everyone. The COVID-19 Pandemic has contributed to increased feelings of isolation and vulnerability.

You can help give someone hope by showing that you care. All of us can play a role, no matter how small. We may never know what we do that makes a difference. We all can reach in and ask somebody. You do not need to tell them what to do or have solutions, but simply making the time and space to listen to someone about their experiences of distress or suicidal thoughts can help. Small talk can save lives and create a sense of connection and hope in somebody who may be struggling.

To prevent suicide requires us to become a beacon of light to those in pain. You can be the light.

Please support @samaritans this  World Suicide Prevention Day.

The Samaritans are available 24 hours a day – call 116 123 or Text SHOUT to 85258.

#Broadwindsor,#Burstock,#Blackdown,#Hursey,#Kittwhistle,#Seaborough,#Drimpton,#Dorset,#Samaritans,#Shout85258,#MentalHealthAwareness,#Covid19,#Coronavirus,#Desperate,#Suicide,#SuicidePrevention,#Abuse,#BeKind,#Volunteer, #ItsOkNotToBeOk,#StaySafe

Mobile PCR Covid Test Sites In Bridport Next Week

The Mobile PCR COVID-19 test sites are available in Bridport on the following dates:

  • Bank Holiday Monday, 30th August,
  • Wednesday, 1st September &
  • Friday. 3rd September.

If you have any of the 3 coronavirus (COVID-19) symptoms below, even if mild, click HERE to get a Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) test as soon as possible:

  • a high temperature
  • a new, continuous cough
  • you’ve lost your sense of smell or taste or it’s changed

You can also order a PCR test kit to be sent to your home or book an appointment at a walk-in or drive-through test site.

Getting tested if you have no symptoms.

If you have no symptoms, you will not qualify for the PCR tests – you can get a Rapid Lateral Flow test if you do not have symptoms. This test is free and you get a result 30 minutes after taking the test.
This test involves rubbing a long cotton bud (swab) over your tonsils (or where they would have been) and inside your nose.

You can only use this service if:

  • you do not have coronavirus (COVID-19) symptoms.
  • you’re 11 or older.
  • you have not been told to self-isolate.
  • you cannot get tests from your work, school, college or university (ask them for rapid lateral flow tests).

Book your Rapid Lateral Flow test HERE.



Marshals Sought For Coast To Coast Cycle Challenge

On Sunday 5th September 2021 the 10th annual Coast to Coast Cycle Challenge will be held, starting at 11.00 am in Watchet and ending in West Bay.
Last year this event was cancelled due to COVID – 19 but in 2019, 571 supporters took part in this event to help raise funds to keep Dorset and Somerset Air Ambulance flying. In doing so they collaboratively rode just over 30,200 miles and raised more than £54,000 – that’s enough to fund approximately 18 missions by the air ambulance.

Already sold out, the number of cyclists is limited  to 600, with the option of taking part in two different routes and distances:

  • 55 miles – commencing at Washford Cross Park and Ride (Watchet) and finishing at Station Yard Car Park in West Bay.
  • 11 miles – commencing at Royal Oak Pub (Drimpton) and also finishing in West Bay.

It is designed to be a challenge and not a race, there is no pressure on those who are amateur or occasional cyclists; it attracts cyclists of all ages and abilities. Pitstops situated at various locations along the route, will once again provide a well-earned rest and refreshments for the cyclists who take part.  Marshals are required at various points.

Can you help?

If you would be willing to help marshal this event and help keep everyone safe, they would love to hear from you.
Please email:

This event may cause some slight disruption and organisers would like to apologise in advance for any inconvenience caused. They have assured that they will follow COVID government guidelines in place at the time of the event.

With the support of West Somerset and Dorset Council, Avon and Somerset and Dorset Police, they pride themselves on offering an event which is registered and insured with British Cycling.

Read more about the Coast to Coast Cycle Challenge – Click HERE.

Good luck to all taking part.


Stableyard Restaurant Now Open

After closing due to Covid issues in the kitchen, Linda Paget and her team are pleased to announce they are open again from today 🙂

We are back open today. Our outside area is looking beautiful with the sweet peas and fuchsias all out. Lovely selection of cakes, slices and freshly baked scones.  Open for lunches too. Looking forward to seeing you all.”


Who can resist those cakes?

If you would like to make a booking please call 01308 868362 and leave a message, message them via Facebook or send an email to


Thank You For Your Hard Work

“A massive thank you to Chris Edgerley, John Hayes, Ruth Stevens, Jamie Dawson, Morgan Napier, and George Calverly for all their fantastic work in painting Comrades Hall with 3 coats of Sandtex paint.
The paint was donated by Bridport Building Supplies for which we are incredibly grateful.
This work took a week of hard graft and would have cost thousands of pounds if we had to pay for it. Many people have commented on how good the finish looks and it seems like a different building. I cannot thank all the volunteers who have given so much in scorching heat to improve Comrades Hall, one of the most important community buildings in our village. Thank you.
David Leader


Councillor Simon Christopher’s Report – July 2021

Cllr. Simon Christopher submitted the following report at this evening’s Informal Meeting of the Group Parish Council:

Dear Helen and Councillors,

It is good to see so much physical activity in keeping our local village halls up together and meeting the aspirations of residents both in terms of their actual use, but also their environmental impact. There was much discussion of what was termed the big society a decade or so ago and evidence of collaboration is very much in my mind in terms of not just community shops, but also possible community run pubs and existing community sports clubs in the Dorset Council Marshwood Vale Ward.
Dorset Council has continued to have virtual meetings. The most recent meeting of the Cabinet was on 22 June 2021 as social distancing requirements were not lifted on 21 June 2021.

Members were advised that where a Cabinet decision was required the appropriate Portfolio holder would be the responsible individual to make the decision whilst considering the views expressed by the wider Cabinet membership 

 You will be aware that the 2 main budgets in Dorset Council are in respect of care for Adults and Care of Children. There are also huge challenges around mental health generally and in respect of learning difficulties .

One report that was considered was the Dorset Care, Support Housing and Community Safety Framework.  Against a backdrop of an ageing population The Portfolio Holder for Adult Social Care and Health Laura Miller, advised that the Council Sought to provide high quality personalised care and support services meeting the needs of service users whilst ensuring that they are delivered and financed in a sustainable way. The current Dorset Care Framework for Older People expires on 30 November 2022 and the Dorset Care Framework for Learning Disabilities needs to be refreshed to include mental health.

Procurement is governed by the Public Contract Regulations 2015 which allows Public Sector Bodies such as Dorset Council in terms of health and social care to adopt /innovate procurement models to best meet the needs of service users.

The framework will be in place for up to 10 years and will enable providers to join at any time (provided clearly that specific criteria is met) instead of fixed opening periods.

The proposed new Framework tool is the key to delivering flexible contracting with all sectors of the provider market including ( and I believe this is absolutely crucial) micro enterprises.

It is fair to say that Dorset Council continues to be under pressure both in terms of dealing with an increase in the number of planning applications and has been attempting to deal with an increase in the level of land charges searches. Across Dorset we are seeing changes in rural property ownership and re-evaluation of business models within the rural community, (which I will write more about later), but often these changes involve the need for planning applications.

With respect to Bus Back Better which was first publicised by H M Government in March 2021, I would like to reiterate that the Dorset Council bus service improvement plan will be published in Autumn 2021.

Councillor Ray Bryan, portfolio holder for Highways Tavel and Environment ,has been working on the Dorset Council Bus Service Improvement Plan.

He is quoted as saying “In response to the Government’s new National Bus Strategy which aims to make bus services more attractive, cheaper, easier to use, Faster, more reliable and greener.
The plan, is the so called Bus Service Improvement (ie: BSIP  Plan)

As a recap a plan will be a collaboration with local bus operators, community groups, and with passengers themselves.

The Council has reviewed the operations that Dorset has through the National Bus Strategy.

Their preferred approach is to develop an Enhanced Partnership for the council area.

An Enhanced Partnership is an agreement between the council and local bus operators to work together to improve local bus services. It requires an agreed vision of improvements and an action plan that will form the Bus Service Improvement Plan”

The plan will involve 5 key aspects:

  • Network and services
  • Fares
  • Ticketing
  • Passenger facilities
  • Bus priority measures

Councillor Bryan has further said that
“By working in close collaboration with the operators and local groups we will develop and deliver an ambitious Bus Service Improvement Plan for Dorset that puts the passenger first, raises further the perception of bus travel, generates mode shift away from private cars, and sees decarbonisation of the local transport fleet.

As a point of record the official notice is as follows
“By executive notice dated 29 June 2021 Dorset Council gave approval to proceed with the Development of and Enhancednotice of the intention to prepare an Enhanced Partnership Plan and accompanying Enhanced Partnership Scheme,as required and set out in section 138F of the Transport Act 2000.

As part of the process to develop the BSIP, the Council will be talking with community groups ,business groups passengers and the public to collect a wide range of thoughts and ideas which will help to shape the future vision and priorities for our bus network. The BSIP will be published in the Autumn”

I make no apology for stressing the importance of the Bus Service Improvement Plan that will be published in Autumn 2021 but the importance of public transport generally to include improvements to rail services and stations.

Several parish councillors are aware that I have continued to lobby Councillor Ray Bryan (mentioned above)  and the lead member for Highway Surfaces Councillor, Cherry Brooks to address the need for extensive parts of our local road network to be re surfaced. There are assurances that further resurfacing , and I refer in particular to the B3165  will take place this autumn.

We are of course in the middle of the most intensive part of the farming year.

While there are many who like seeing so much agricultural machinery working in the fields the fact that the machinery has to travel on our roads causes concern to some residents who write to me in connection with damaged roads, drains and verges. Of course, some damage may for instance be caused by say buses and lorries .

I would naturally be interested to hear the further thoughts of parish councillors and residents. I say this as I have within the Marshwood Vale Ward experience receipt of communication citing oversized agricultural machinery. In my experience agricultural machinery does not appear to be any larger than that you would see across the West Country.

I am writing this as we anticipate further easing of Covid restrictions and at a time when Covid cases are rising again across Dorset.
As of 9 July 2021, hospitalisations have been increasing with there being 14 people in hospital with Covid 19 in Dorset . The vaccine programme is however assessed as having a significant impact on the number of people being seriously unwell. That is the number of people requiring hospital treatment is at a much lower level compared to when Dorset was experiencing similar case rates in previous waves.

There are several walk-in vaccine clinics taking place across Dorset as residents are encouraged to grab a jab as it is termed prior to likely further easing of Covid 19 restrictions under step 4 of HM Government roadmap.

In summary the most recent data, to 9 July 2021 is as follows:

7 day cases per 100,000.
Dorset 96.4 compared to 69.2 per previous week.
The equivalent figure for Bournemouth Christchurch and Poole was 236.8 per 100.000 compared to 147.7per previous week.

I thought I would now turn to the question of the management of Dorset Council Owned Tree Policy . It is my understanding that Dorset Council is responsible for approximately 250,000 trees . The responsible Portfolio holder stated that town and parish councils were continually consulted and also confirmed that he was working closely with the County Farms in respect of tree replacement.

This now leads to the portfolio holder being quoted as stating that it was important to plant the right tree in the right place. This may seem an obvious comment but never more relevant.

I write this as it is a HM Government target to plant 30,000 hectares a year by 2025 this is under the DEFRA  England Trees Action Plan  2021-2024.  As part of the plan ,it was announced that the Forestry Commission would launch a new England Woodland Creation Offer (EWCO),
There is much discussion of carbon sequestration biodiversity and timber production. And which tree species and location to assist in a fight to prevent soil erosion.

We are now seeing tickets being sold for some local agricultural shows eg: Honition at the start of August and Gillingham and Shaftesbury in the 3rd week of August . Both shows are unusually going to operate as 2 day shows due to ongoing concerns and capacity numbers appear somewhat uncertain Dorset County show in Dorchester and Melplash are both Cancelled.

These events are hugely important as are the functioning of livestock dispersal sales such as the one taking place at Frome market tomorrow (12 July ) in respect of a herd of organic dairy cows as farming is seen to operate in a manner closer to normality and a time when there is so much stress in the farming community . This stress includes the high incidence of TB in cattle and increasing testing requirements and cuts in Basic Payment ie support payments. Income is being lost in the the reduction in the Basic Payment Scheme which is being phased out Payment rates for the new sustainable farming incentive have now been set out by Defra Secretary George Eustace . This will have an impact naturally on farmers in the Marshwood Vale ward and indeed for farmers on the Dorset Council Farms Estate . Many of you will be aware that HM Government are encouraging farmers to move towards what is termed sustainable farming but also encouraging farmers to collaborate be more efficient and diversify.

In fact, with enhanced capital allowances for businesses in assisting with their tax it can be argued that HMG is being very generous in encouraging all rural business to be more efficient but increased efficiency and indeed diversification is not without broadband challenges……

Finally, within the Marshwood Vale Ward I have received notice of difficulties in respect of private drainage. You will be aware that not all of the extensive Marshwood Vale Ward is on mains drainage. The specific difficulties involve soakaways and I would welcome your thoughts by e mail as to  the extent to which private drainage is a problem for individual householders and their neighbours and the wider community.

Best regards

Councillor Simon Christopher
Dorset Councillor Marshwood Vale
077988 33715



Stableyard Restaurant Closed

The Stableyard Restaurant at Redlands Yard has closed for approximately 10 days due to a positive Covid case in their kitchen.

They hope to be back open again towards the end of week commencing 19th July and will keep customers updated on social media with plans nearer the time.

Stableyard Restaurant, BroadwindsorThey thank you for your understanding.

Please direct any enquiries to:



Decoration Starts At Comrades Hall

Taking time out for a well deserved cuppa, David Leader and a group of volunteers started painting the outside of the Comrades Hall this week.

Our thanks go out to David, Chris, Jamie, John & Morgan and to Ruth who did the crazy pave sealant work!

Excellent work – Thank you all!


Goodbye & Good Luck!

…to Vikki & Spike, now ex-landlords of Broadwindsor’s pub, The White Lion.

Vikki and Spike are off to pastures new, closer to family at The New Inn, Park Lane Off Church Street, Blagdon, Bristol, BS40 7SB. The venue appears very attractive situated by Blagdon lake and several locals have already declared promises to take a trip to visit them and of course, all will be welcomed.

Thank you so much Spike and Vikki for everything you have contributed to our village while you have been here. You have been an invaluable part of our community. You will be sorely missed but we all wish you both wealth, health and prosperity in your new venture.

What’s happening to the pub?

The Parish Council is waiting to hear back from Palmers Brewery re: negotiations of the building becoming a community run pub: initial village feedback would indicate the situation is fraught with problems as anyone taking over is subject to Palmers’ rules, ales and pricing. Click HERE to view the latest local  news at the time of publishing…. we wait.


Where will people go?

The nearest pubs out of the village are:

  • The Knapp in Beaminster.
  • The Royal Oak in Drimpton.
  • The Admiral Hood in Mosterton.
  • The New Inn in Stoke Abbott.