Notes from Annual Parish Meetings

Whiteshill Common


At the Annual Parish Meeting on 9 October there was an application by the Hambrook Cricket Club who proposed to ‘fence in the pitch on Whiteshill Common during the season’. This being during the months of March to August inclusive. On being put to the meeting the resolution was carried by 21 votes FOR, 8 AGAINST.

The Parish Council should take action to obtain powers to stop the riding exercising of horses on any part of Whiteshill and Frenchay Commons.

An application was received on behalf of the residents of Hambrook Village to obtain the Council’s permission to arrange organised cricket matches on Whiteshill Common on Sundays. The votes recorded were 64 in favour and 179 against.

Winterbourne Down Football Club had not been given the privilege of playing on Whiteshill Common after 15 March. The Club requested that a sports field should be provided for the ecclesiastical parish of Winterbourne Down. It was agreed by those present that it was not practical to provide a Parish recreational field.

The Recreation Ground


The Parish Council wanted to secure the field in Winterbourne known as The Ridings. This to be retained as an Open Space.

At a Special Parish Meeting on 29 September, it was stated that in order to ensure the possibility of a permanent sports field in Winterbourne the land was owned by the Church Commissioners and that a restrictive covenant be placed which would ensure this was only to be used as a sports field. The purchase price was £750. A second covenant was also placed on the field that all organised sport on Sundays was prohibited.

At a Special Parish Meeting held on 17 December, a levy of a special rate of 4 pence in Parish Precept in order to complete the purchase of the field. It was stated that the Parish was in receipt of a grant from the National Playing Fields Association of £225, Gloucestershire County Council a loan of £500 and Parish funds of £150. The excess of the funds were required to cover conveyance and other legal fees.

A motion was raised that ‘this meeting authorise the Parish Council to raise a loan of not more than £2,500’. This was towards the cost of the proposed pavilion in Winterbourne Recreational Field. This motion was carried.

It was noted that the pavilion had been formally opened by the local MP. The Parish Council also agreed to the erection of two hard tennis courts. These courts are to be available to all in the Parish.

The Common Use of the Winterbourne Recreation Field had been signed with the County Council

It is recorded in the Minutes that Winterbourne Cricket Club had its 75th anniversary.

The covenant preventing the playing of organised matches on a Sunday has now been waived.

Frenchay Common


The Chairman was pleased to report that the Parish Council had at last been able to purchase the manorial rights of The Commons. The Parish Council were hoping to bring about an improvement in the general condition of The Commons and had already discussed a scheme regarding the trees.

Reference is made to the ‘old quarry hole’ which is now known as The Small Common. This was to be filled in by Sodbury Rural Council, levelled and grass seeded. This was an alternative to its other proposed use which was for it to be turned into public conveniences!

The registration of Frenchay Common had been cleared with the Commons Registry and ownership finally passes to Winterbourne Parish Council.

Nature Reserves


The Minutes make the first mention and report by Winterbourne Countryside Group on Monks Pool and Bradley Brook Reserves.

The Chairman reported that consistent with the Council’s aims to increase recreational space, an area of 2.2 acres at Bristol Road had been purchased from Avon County Council for a sum of £11,250. This area is now known as Newleaze and added to the Parish Council Nature Reserves.

The Reserves are adopted by South Gloucestershire Council as Conservation Areas. Subsequently they are both given Nature Reserve Status by the same Authority.

It was noted that an area of land at The Dingle was purchased by the Parish Council to add to the Nature Reserves.



The Chairman reported that we had been looking to provide additional allotments within the Parish. Negotiations are in hand to purchase some land in Winterbourne Down, off Harcombe Hill. The land was subsequently purchased and officially opened in June 2013. These are now known as The Jubilee Allotments.

Other Parish matters


Initial discussions took place on a sewerage scheme to serve Winterbourne. In order to remove the pollution from the River Frome arrangements were in hand to enlarge the sewer works. Tenders were with Gloucestershire County Council and the cost of the works was to be borne by the County.

It was declared that it had been agreed with Gloucestershire County Council that the Parish be divided into three Wards. Winterbourne to have 8 councillors, Winterbourne Down and Hambrook to have 4, and Frenchay to have 4.

The Chairman stated that the Council had received correspondence from parishioners expressing concern at the rumours that Filton Airfield may at some future date be used as an airport.

There is to be a local Council reorganisation. Both Sodbury and Thornbury Rural District Councils are to combine as a Northavon District Council and will form under the umbrella of the new County of Avon. This was formed on 1 April 1974.

It was reported that Parish comments on all Planning applications have become mandatory.

It was reported that land purchased in Winterbourne by Northavon District Council was for the provision of car park and toilets off Flaxpits Lane. These were finally completed in 1987.

The major event of the year was the Planning Appeal into the Hicks Common application which was subsequently known locally as the Horseshoe. The Council had set up its own Parish organisation to support the District Council in fighting the Appeal. The total cost to the Parish Council was approximately £12,000. Frampton Cotterell contributed 30%. Westerleigh Parish Council gave £2,000. The Appeal was later dismissed.

Greenfield Centre


The former teachers Advisory Centre in Winterbourne is up for sale and negotations are in progress for it to be purchased by the Parish. The use is to be for Parish Council Offices and a Community Centre. The purchase was completed in 1995.

The renovations begin. All windows were replaced. The boilers and heating system had all be converted to gas. To fund the works the Parish Council had taken out a Public Works loan to be repaid over a ten year period.