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Woodley Town Mayor judging Tray Gardens

Woodley Mayors judge school Tray Garden challenge

Woodley Town Council Mayor and Deputy Mayor judge Woodley schools’ Tray Garden Challenge

Enthusiastic Year 1 pupils from Beechwood, Highwood, Rivermead, South Lake and St Dominic Savio primary schools recently spent the day at Waingels College, showcasing their creativity in a Tray Garden Challenge. 

The morning was spent in workshops run by Waingels’ Art Department, where the children made items to use to help decorate their gardens. In the afternoon, everything came together as they used those items, and a wealth of beautiful plants donated by Winnersh Garden Centre, to create gardens with an Olympic theme.

Judges

The gardens were judged by Woodley Mayor, Cllr Juliet Anderson, Deputy Town Mayor, Cllr David Bragg, Cassie King from British Garden Centres and Brenda Milton from the Woodley Flower Club.  

They were all very impressed with the children’s creativity, the teamwork that they showed and their ability to confidently discuss their designs with the judges.  All the children received a certificate for taking part, presented by the Mayor and Mr Hickey, Head of Highwood Primary School. While Winnersh Garden Centre donated seeds for all and prizes for the winners. 

The wonderful creations were then on display for all to see during Woodley Carnival, alongside the incredible Woodley Flower Club exhibition.

Woodley schools cluster

The Tray Garden Challenge is one of four Challenge Days run for different year groups on an annual basis. The projects, initiated by Mr Hickey, Head of Highwood Primary School, bring together children and teachers from Woodley schools to collaborate on an activity that provides real benefit to the children. 

“Hosting the events at local secondary schools also introduces the pupils to the sights and sounds of their next educational step, helping to ease transition worries. These projects would not be possible without the generous donations from local companies and the funding awarded from a Woodley Town Council grant, for which we are very grateful,” commented a spokesperson for the Woodley Schools Cluster. 

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Beacon-3

Light of Peace for D-Day

Deputy Lord Lieutenant of Berkshire and Woodley Town Council Mayor honour D-Day with a blazing Light of Peace

Woodley Town Council hosted a special D-Day 80th Anniversary Picnic in the Park to commemorate the 80th Anniversary of the D-Day Landings

We were delighted to see Woodford Park filled with hundreds of people who gathered to remember those involved in the D-Day Landings 80 years ago. 

The crowds were entertained by swing and jazz music from the era, played by The Hipcats, with circus entertainment for the younger ones from Circus Scene and face painting by Your Face or Mine?

The event was officially opened by Woodley Town Crier, Tony Roper, who welcomed everyone and read out the official Town Crier Tribute. 

Speeches

At 9pm, the Deputy Lord Lieutenant of Berkshire, Mr Richard Anderson, and Woodley Town Mayor, Cllr Juliet Anderson, were accompanied on stage by the Wokingham Borough Mayor, Cllr Adrian Mather, Woodley Town Crier, Tony Roper, and Woodley Town Council Town Clerk, Kevin Murray. 

“What a special day today is and what an amazing and special occasion D-Day was for the world because that was the largest armada that has ever been put together in the history of all of the countries. I’m very fortunate that my father landed on Sword Beach D+ 30 minutes with the Canadians. He was in the Royal Artillery and, because of that, I have got his beret here and I am going to wear that right now,” said Mr Anderson. This was accompanied by a round of applause as he placed the beret on his head.

Also wearing his father’s medals, Mr Anderson then talked about a visit to Sword Beach with his father and some of the stories his father shared with him of the landings, including some very near misses from bombs.

Woodley Town Mayor, Cllr Juliet Anderson, followed this by thanking Mr Anderson for his speech and commenting that, for her, the most moving aspect of the D-Day commemorations had been to hear so many personal accounts and stories. 

Cllr Anderson also thanked the Town Crier for opening the event and also thanked the residents of Woodley for attending the event and being part of the community of Woodley. 

“It is a privilege to represent the people of Woodley as Woodley Town Mayor to honour those who sacrificed so much at the D-Day landings and beyond to end World War II. 

80 years ago, on 6 June 1944, over 156,000 naval, airborne and ground Allied troops of many nationalities under British, Canadian, and American commands landed on the Normandy beaches. This marked the beginning of the liberation of France and the eventual defeat of Nazi Germany. The sheer scale of the attack and the loss of life is quite incomprehensible.”

Cllr Anderson also commented on Woodley’s role in World War II: “Woodley had a pivotal role in World War II, as a base for Elementary Flying Training School courses. Indeed, there are several road names related to this, in particular, Bader Way, named after Douglas Bader who was a wartime pilot.”

“We will shortly light the Beacon in line with others across the nation as a celebration of the Light of Peace that emerged out of the darkness of war, remembering and honouring those who fought at the D-Day landings and all of those who volunteered, sacrificed, served, fought and died for our freedom,” she added.

Light of Peace

The speeches were followed by Mr Anderson and Woodley Town Mayor, Cllr Juliet Anderson, lighting the Beacon at 9.15pm alongside the rest of the nation, representing the Light of Peace. This was followed by sounds of gun fire and the National Tribute, read by Woodley Town Deputy Clerk, Matthew Filmore. 

Thanks

We would like to thank everyone who came to the event to pay their respects and honour those who sacrificed so much for our freedom.

Our particular thanks go to Mr Richard Anderson, Cllr Adrian Mather and Tony Roper for their attendance and contribution. 

We would also like to thank the food and drink stalls for providing delicious refreshments, alongside our entertainers and band. 

Photos and videos

Video footage of the event will be available on our YouTube channel.

We were also lucky to have Woodley Photographic Club in attendance taking photos and we will be publishing these next week. 

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Annual Town Meeting May 2024

Annual Town Meeting

Local residents given the opportunity to ask Woodley Town Council about matters in Woodley

We were delighted with the attendance at our recent Annual Town Meeting, which was held in the Theatre at the Oakwood Centre on Thursday 23rd May.

Community Heroes Awards

The evening started with our newly appointed Town Mayor, Cllr Juliet Anderson, awarding local community heroes as nominated by the community of Woodley.

In summary:

  • Vikram Singh was awarded Neighbour of the Year for supporting people in Woodley to stay safe online and avoid being scammed. 
  • Woodley Lunch Bunch were awarded Volunteer Group of the Year for their continued work providing a packed lunch delivery service to families in Woodley who are having a difficult time financially, or in other ways, during the school holidays. 
  • Peter Hawkins was awarded Volunteer of the Year for his dedication helping others and encouraging individuals to take up and enjoy bowling.
  • Former Woodley Town Mayor, Cllr Janet Sartorel, awarded Shane Mason from the Good Companions Pub, for his work providing meals on Christmas Day and Boxing Day to the elderly & vulnerable, alongside providing a free soup kitchen during the winter. 

Full details of the winners can be found in an article on our News Page.

Pictured with Woodley Town Mayor, Cllr Juliet Anderson.

Climate Emergency

A presentation on Climate Emergency was delivered by Climate Officers Resh Thorpe and Mhairi Adams from Wokingham Borough Council (WBC) and Matthew Filmore, Woodley Town Council Deputy Town Clerk. The presentation provided an update on actions taken so far by the Borough and Town Councils and also focused on the importance of individual participation to help reduce carbon emissions.

Several members of the audience asked questions about climate issues in the Borough. These included how short car journeys to school could be addressed. WBC Officers advised that by 2025, all schools in the Borough will need to have an individual Climate Emergency Action Plan (CEAP).

A question was asked as to whether methane emissions from Ashenbury Park, which was once a landfill site, could be harvested. WBC Officers said that this comment would be passed on to the climate team at WBC.

A question was asked regarding how young people could be discouraged from discarding disposable vapes and drinks cans/bottles inappropriately. WBC Officers advised that this could form part of the discussion in schools and feed into their CEAPs. It was also noted that there was a planned campaign regarding the correct disposal methods for vapes.

A question was asked about the amount of waste generated by the Carnival and whether this was recycled. Cllr Anderson, as a member of the Carnival Committee, responded that some work had been done on this and the general waste bins this year will have recyclable materials separated by the waste contractor after collection.

General questions

The public were then invited to ask questions specific to Woodley Town Council. These included if whether a map could be produced showing the location of all publicly accessible defibrillators in Woodley. The Town Clerk agreed to look into this.

A question was asked regarding the Sunflower Hidden Disabilities Scheme and whether the profile of this could be raised in Woodley. The Deputy Town Clerk advised that Woodley Town Council had signed up to the scheme and the Town Clerk agreed to take the details of the resident and discuss this further.

A question was asked as to what happened to the old graffiti wall in Woodford Park. Cllr Baker advised that the wall was removed some years ago as it was old and in poor condition. He added that a suggestion had been made regarding the reinstatement of something similar but that this had yet to be formally considered.

A question was asked if more lighting could be installed in Woodford Park and whether the net on the basketball hoop could be replaced. The Town Clerk advised that the potential for additional lighting in the park would need to be carefully considered so as not to encourage people to gather in certain areas and that the damaged hoop basket would be removed.

A request was submitted to provide facilities for Padel Tennis at Woodford Park Leisure Centre. It was noted that this would be forwarded to the Town Council working group that was currently looking at future sports provision at the centre. The Deputy Town Clerk advised that there was currently a public consultation survey available for all users and non-users of the centre to feed ideas into, and that this had received around 1000 responses so far.

Cllr Baker rounded off the Q&A session by advising residents that if they wished to object to planning applications affecting them, they must respond to Wokingham Borough Council as the planning authority, and also to contact their Borough Councillor to request that the application be ‘listed’. This process means that the application will be considered fully by Borough Councillors, rather than simply decided by Planning Officers.

Other questions relating to areas covered by Wokingham Borough Council were recorded and will be referred to WBC. Full details of these and minutes of the meeting can be read here.

Reception

The evening concluded with a Cheese & Wine reception in the Carnival and Maxwell Halls at the Oakwood Centre.

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Woodley Town Council Community Heroes Awards logo

Woodley Town Council awards your local heroes

Woodley Town Mayor Cllr Juliet Anderson awards local heroes as nominated by the community of Woodley 

We were delighted to award Woodley’s local heroes at our recent Annual Town Meeting, held in the theatre at The Oakwood Centre on 23rd May. 

Neighbour of the Year

Vikram Singh was awarded Neighbour of the Year for supporting people in Woodley to stay safe online and avoid being scammed. David Lawson, one of Vikram’s nominees, said: “Vik is a real community hero because he has helped me and other neighbours stay safe online.”

Volunteer Group of the Year

Woodley Lunch Bunch were awarded Volunteer Group of the Year for their continued work providing a packed lunch delivery service to families in Woodley who are having a difficult time financially, or in other ways, during the school holidays. Brent Lees, one of the nominees, said: “Many people have had challenges associated with the pandemic and the cost of living crisis and are juggling whether to put the heating on or feed their children. Lunch Bunch is an organisation that helps with some of those challenges and that’s why I felt they were very deserving of this award.”

Juliet Sherratt, chairperson of Woodley Lunch Bunch praised and thanked the volunteers of the group for their dedication and continued support to help the local children of Woodley.

Volunteer of the Year

Peter Hawkins was awarded Volunteer of the Year for his dedication helping others and encouraging individuals to take up and enjoy bowling. Peter is a founding member of Woodley Bowling Club and also helped build the Clubhouse. Stephen Treeves, one of the nominees, said: “I can’t think of a better tribute as Woodley Bowls Club celebrates its 60th anniversary than to give someone who was a founder member and who helped build the club and see it move forward to get an award for his work in the community.” Stephen also praised Peter’s wife Viv, who is also a valued member of the community. 

Mayor’s Award

Former Woodley Town Mayor, Cllr Janet Sartorel, awarded Shane Mason from the Good Companions Pub, for his work providing meals on Christmas Day and Boxing Day to the elderly & vulnerable, alongside providing a free soup kitchen during the winter. 

“Ever since Shane and Leanne took over the management of the Good Companion Pub, they have set out to make community the heart of what they do. From November last year to January this year Shane and Leanne provided a free soup kitchen at the pub. On Christmas Day and Boxing Day, in collaboration with the charities Woodley Lunch Bunch and Woodley Share, they sent out over 120 Christmas dinners, celebration boxes and presents for local children. For their outstanding contribution to the community, I am delighted to nominate Shane and Leanne for this year’s Mayors Award.”

Videos of the winners can be watched on our YouTube channel: @WoodleyTownCouncil.

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Woodley Town Mayors 2024 to 2025

Woodley Town Council Mayor and Deputy Mayor elected at the Annual Meeting

Voted at the Annual Meeting on 7 May, Cllr Juliet Anderson was elected as Woodley Town Mayor, while Cllr David Bragg was elected as Woodley Town Deputy Mayor. 

Cllr Anderson’s chosen charity for the year is SHARE Woodley.

It is one of 15 free community fresh food and pantry sites set up by the food sharing charity SHARE.

You can find out more about SHARE’s services on its website.

Invite the Mayor

To invite the Mayor or Deputy Mayor to an event, please email: 

Matthew.Filmore@woodley.gov.uk

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Woodley Town Council grants

New community grants awarded in April

Woodley Town Council awarded the following grants at its recent Strategy & Resources Committee Meeting.

Life Education

£310 awarded to pay towards running workshops over two days at Highwood Primary School – providing health, wellbeing and drug prevention education to children.

Woodley Bowling Club

£350 awarded to pay towards re-carpeting the main lounge area and corridors in the club house. Find out more about the club HERE

Woodley Festival of Music & Arts

£350 awarded to pay towards the cost of venue hire, Arts adjudicator and other professional fees, publicity, and piano hire for the festival. The Festival is held at the Oakwood Centre each year. Find out more about the Festival HERE.

Woodley Photographic Club

£350 awarded to pay towards the purchase of a new projector to display photographic images. The club meets on Mondays at the Oakwood Centre. Find out more about the club HERE.

Young person A

£100 awarded to pay towards the costs associated with taking part and representing England at the Dance World Cup in Prague in June/July 2024. 

Young person B

£100 awarded to pay towards the costs associated with taking part and representing England at the Dance World Cup in Prague in June/July 2024. 

Changes to amounts

At the meeting, it was decided that the maximum community grant amount awarded be increased to £350, with the individual grant rate remaining at £100.

Our Grants

During the current financial year, Woodley Town Council has allocated funds to make the following grants:

Community Grants – Up to £350, for community groups / organisations either based in or supporting residents of Woodley, to fund one-off costs such as specific projects or purchases.

Individual Grants – Up to £100, for individuals under the age of 21 living in Woodley, excelling in sporting or cultural activities, to fund representation at county, regional, national or international events.

Youth Grants – Up to £3,000 (although exceptions will be considered), for organisations, to assist and facilitate projects that reach, engage and support young people (those aged 21 and under) in Woodley.

Annual Grants – No cap, for fully constituted ‘not for profit’ organisations either based in or supporting residents of Woodley, to fund annual running costs or specific projects.

Should you wish to apply for a grant, then full guidelines and application forms can be found on our Grants Page.

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Mayor's Charity Quiz

Mayor’s Charity Quiz night raises over £1500 for Woodley Lunch Bunch

We are delighted to announce that the Mayor’s Charity Quiz night raised £1546.35 for the Mayor’s chosen charity, Woodley Lunch Bunch

Woodley Town Mayor, Cllr Janet Sartorel, hosted a Charity Quiz night, along with Woodley Town Deputy Mayor, Cllr Juliet Anderson on Friday at the Oakwood Centre.

The event was compered by Juliet, and involved a fun mix of games and a main quiz, which concluded with an interesting round named “Ikea or cheese?’.

Woodley Lunch Bunch

The bar was run by team members of Woodley Lunch Bunch, with additional support on score keeping. A spokesperson for the charity commented: “We are so grateful for the Mayor’s support. We ran the bar and helped with the scoring and had a lovely evening. Thank you to everyone who came and helped to raise such a fantastic amount.”

Woodley Lunch Bunch is a local charity which delivers lunches to children in Woodley. You can find out more about the charity HERE.

Raffle

The Mayor also ran a raffle with prizes ranging from bottles of champagne, chocolates, candles to vouchers for meals out. Janet would like to thank all the local businesses who generously donated prizes and to everyone who bought a raffle ticket on the night.

Winners

The Deputy Town Mayor produced a challenging and fun quiz, with additional games, including a ‘Heads or Tails’ round. The overall winners of the Quiz were the Valiant Vikings, closely followed by the Quiz & Tonics. The Valiant Vikings were presented with chocolate lollies by Janet.

Woodley Town Mayor

Janet thanked everyone on the evening for their generosity to help raise such an outstanding amount. “I would like to thank everyone here for attending the quiz, buying raffle tickets and spending money at the bar. I am delighted to raise much needed funds for Woodley Lunch Bunch, who do such a wonderful service for children in Woodley. I would also like to thank the staff at Woodley Town Council for putting the event together, as well as Juliet for being such a great quiz host.”

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Woodley Town Mayor at Woodley Festival of Music & Arts

Mayor attends Woodley Festival of Music & Arts

Woodley Town Mayor, Cllr Janet Sartorel, attended the Finale Concert of the Woodley Festival of Music & Arts and was presented with a beautiful bouquet of flowers to thank the Mayor, Woodley Town Council and the staff at the Oakwood Centre for their support each year.

Fiona Fisher, chairperson of Woodley Festival of Music & Art gave huge thanks for the facilities of the  Oakwood Centre and help from staff. She also said that the grant given by the Council goes a long way towards keeping the event going. 


Cllr Janet Sartorel is picture with Ann & Rod Manning who have sponsored the festival for many years. 

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Annual Town Meeting May 2024

Annual Town Meeting 23 May 2024

Each year, we host our Annual Town Meeting for the electors living in Woodley to find out about Council activities and to make statements on relevant matters.

When & where

This year, we are holding the Annual Town Meeting on Thursday 23rd May, 7-9pm, in the Alan Cornish Theatre at the Oakwood Centre.

Community Heroes Awards

The evening will start with the presentation of our Community Heroes Awards to local individuals and organisations in recognition of exceptional service to the town.

Climate Emergency

This will be followed by a presentation from guest speakers from Wokingham Borough Council’s Climate Emergency team providing on climate change, and what residents can do to play their part in tackling the crisis.

Resident’s Forum

Electors will have the opportunity to raise any issues and concerns with Councillors, as their elected representatives, on any topic, activity or subject matter they believe to be affecting Woodley. 

Cheese & wine reception

The meeting will conclude with a cheese and wine reception.

We look forward to welcoming you.

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police community fund donates £10,000 towards the installation of CCTV in Woodley town centre

Town Council supports project to install CCTV in Woodley Town Centre 

Progress to install CCTV in Woodley Town Centre continues with new fund donation

Woodley Town Centre Partnership has received a further £10,000 from the Police Community Fund, to add to the £5,000 they received in 2023. The money will go towards a CCTV system for the Town Centre. 

Wokingham Borough Council has also recently agreed to contribute £15,000, and Woodley Town Council has now adopted the project and is currently inviting tenders. 

Woodley Town Centre Partnership has already met with several bidders and is planning to work quickly to get an effective system installed.

Town Centre Manager, Brian Fennelly, said: “We are very grateful to have received this further contribution from the Police Community Fund. Wokingham Borough Council’s contribution is also very much appreciated, and it is very encouraging to have these two important stakeholders making an active contribution to Woodley Town Centre. Woodley Town Council has been fully supportive of the project all along and the Town Centre Partnership look forward to working with the Council at pace to get an effective CCTV system installed.”

CCTV Survey

The Town Council would like residents’ views on the potential installation of CCTV in the town centre. If you would like to feed into this, please take part in this short 1 minute survey.

We thank you for your time.

 

Town Centre Manager, Brian Fennelly, receiving a cheque from Matthew Barber, Police & Crime Commissioner for Thames Valley

Town Centre Manager, Brian Fennelly, receiving a cheque from Matthew Barber, Police & Crime Commissioner for Thames Valley

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Great British Clean Up Day March 2024

Great British Spring Clean

Woodley’s Clean Up Day 2024

Keep Britain Tidy’s ninth Great British Spring Clean is back and Woodley Adopt a Street (WASP) is hosting a Clean Up Day on Saturday 23 March

The WASP team will be meeting at Woodford Park Leisure Centre, Haddon Drive, Woodley on Saturday 23 March, at 10am and welcome local residents to come and join them to lend a hand.

WASP asks volunteers to wear gloves, strong footwear and suitable clothing. The team is also encouraging volunteers to bring along their own litter picker and Hi Vis, if they have them. Otherwise these can be provided while stocks last.

For further details please contact:

Shelagh Flower: 07879330403 / shelagh.flower@googlemail.com

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D-Day 80th anniversary event in Woodley

D-Day 80th Anniversary Event

Please join us to celebrate the 80th Anniversary of D-Day

Thursday 6th June 2024, 6pm – 10pm

Woodford Park Memorial Ground, Headley Road, Woodley

Live band performing on stage! Entertainers! Food & drink stalls!

The Woodley Town Mayor will light a beacon at 9.15pm along with the rest of the nation.

Bring a picnic, your friends and family and enjoy the celebrations!

More information to follow…

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