MANOR DRIVE PILLARS DAMAGED

The hamstone pillars at the entrance to the Manor Drive have been seriously damaged by a lorry.

The damage is thought to ave happened in the last week or so but did not come to light until a few days ago.

The pillars, which are Grade 2 listed, were designed by TH Wyatt in 1877 and formed the entrance to North Perrott Manor, which was designed and built at the same time.

The left hand pillar has been twisted at the base and will need completely dismantling and rebuilding to complete the repair.

If anyone saw the damage taking place, please contact Mrs Judith Hall at the Manor Farm. She is anxious to know the name of the person or business that was resposible for the damage.

MISSING DEFIBRILLATOR

North Perrott Defibrillator is located in East Street.

The village defibrillator was reported missing this morning.

It was last checked only a few days ago as being present and correct.

Does anyone know if it was used legitimately in the last few days?

If so, there’s no panic and I’m sure it will be returned in good time.

Otherwise, it will be reported lost and the Parish Clerk will have to make an insurance claim.

In the meantime, everyone (including me) will have to be careful to keep taking their pills!

Hopefully there will be a logical explanation and it will be returned safely…….

A National Moment of Reflection

Those wishing to reflect on the momentous events happening at the moment and mark the selfless service of Queen Elizabeth II during her reign, are invited to gather on the village green at 7.45pm this Sunday 18th Sept.

A minute’s silence of National Reflection will be observed at 8pm followed by the National Anthem.

The Queen is dead. Long live the King!

THANK YOU for your HARD WORK

A wonderful display of community spirit yesterday saw many homeowners on the main road join in the village tidy by cutting hedges and sweep the pavement in front of their house.

The main clear-up crew consisted of Alistair, Chris, Chris, Drew, Jonathan, Judith & Pete. Working extremely hard, between them they made short work of moving the remainder of the weeds and debris off the pavement and out of the gutters, into the road to be collected by the road sweeper.

In all, about 6m3 of debris was removed from both sides of the road and the pavements are clean, tidy and safe to walk.

Two trailer loads of debris removed from the pavement and roadsides.

Thank you to all involved and apologies if I have missed names out. We are now ready in case a Royal Entourage decides to pass through North Perrott.

Sadly, this type of work never ends. Sometime between 8pm last night and 8am this morning, two bags of garden waste was left in a layby in Willis Lane. If anyone’s gardener cleared up using Sherborne Turf dumpy bags, you might want to ask for a refund and pass us their number to clear up!?

VILLAGE TIDY

At the Annual Village Meeting it was decided that we should try to make the village “Fit for the Queen” in time for the Platinum Jubilee weekend in two weeks time.

Please see the village calendar for the diary of events.

In general, the village looks neat and tidy with the exception of the pavement and the edges of the main road from the Village Hall down to Townsend, the junction of Willis Lane and the main road.

We are looking for 4-6 volunteers to help on Sunday 22nd May at 2.30pm to use brushes and shovels in a working party on the main road.

Help needed at 2.30pm on Sunday 22nd May.

At the same time, villagers are encouraged to check the verge or pavement outside their property boundary and have a quick brush-up, mow or hedge trim. Whatever you might think needs doing in preparation for a visit from the Queen!

The Main Road working party will be assisted by a JCB and mechanical brush. Dayglow gillets will be provided but please bring a spade, shovel or brush. It is expected take 1-2 hours at most.

Safety will be paramount while working on the main road, so it is esssetial that everyone works within the instructions of our insurance and risk assessment. Thank you.

VILLAGE GATEWAYS

The Parish Council invites members of the community to comment on ideas for new village gateways. If you wish to input your views, please do so here or by attending the Parish Council meeting tomorrow in the Village Hall at 7.30pm (Village meeting starts at 7.00pm).

What is a Village Gateway and why do we need one?

Simple fences on both sides

When the bridge in Misterton was closed for an extended period of time in 2020/21, our village got an unwelcome glimps of what traffic might be in 10-20years time. For a period, all the traffic that would normally travel through Crewkerne on the A356 came through North Perrott. A large proportion was being diverted out of its way and was in a hurry to make up time. The sheer volume of HGV’s and the speed that they were travelling immediatly impacted on the houses closest to the main road, some of whom are built on 15th Century foundations. Pictures moved on walls, cracks appeared in plaster and in some cases, fell off the wall. The Parish Council acted quickly and initiated a 20’s Plenty campaign to slow down HGV’s passing through the village. Over 25 local transport companies were written to and we even had 3 supportive replies! The result was a significant reduction in speed and an immediate reduction in damage and inconveniance to home owners. Temporary banners were put up and have been in place for over 12 months. This is not a problem that will go away and so NPPC has decided that a more permanent solution is required.

Example of hurdles on both sides of the road.

Statistics and experts from Highways insist that to reduce average speeds in build up areas, drivers need to see and understand the reason that they should slow down. Bus stops, schools and pedestrians walking on the road are obvious examples but most dangers are invisible or only occasional. The solution that many villages have taken is to install gateways to their villages, giving a visulal reminder to drivers that they are entering a community that represents a potential reason to slow down and drive concienciously. To reinforce this we already have a very active Community Speedwatch group (CSW) and now a Speed Indicator Device (SID).

The intention is place a fence behind the existing Hamstone sign at the south of the village and a gatepost on the opposite verge. This not an actual gate but it represents a visual gateway to the village. The same will be replicated at the other end of the village. The stone will have the village name engraved on it but there will need to be more signage, to explain the reason for slowing down and what speed we are expecting drivers to travel through the village at. Given that the curent speed limit is 30mph, the intention is to target HGV’s (including tractors) to reduce their speed to 20mph using the current slogan 20’s plenty and the Highways accepted green sign, which is voluntary. This avoids the costly and bureacratic application for a blanket 20mph limit, which we might not qualify for in any case. This project is to be a ramping up of an already successful campaign but not ruling out further speed controlling measures in the future.

The present banners stipulate that the reason for slowing down HGV’s is because our houses are close to the road and on ancient foundations. We are also a conservation area and a one of the most beautiful hamstone villages in the area. We need a short and sharp message that will convey why drivers should slow down and in a permanent and tasteful way that is fitting in our environment.

To that end, the fence will be built out of green oak, that has already been felled and is scheduled to be milled in June. We would like to give villagers the chance to brain-storm ideas that the PC can consider incorporating into the design, before work is started.

On this page, there are examples of what other villages have done. Most have opted for off the peg Highways approved designs, often white and mostly made of recycle plastic. Not entirely fitting with a conservation area, so we would like to be a bit more creative with natural and local materials if we can.

Example of a more complex gate.

Everyone should be familar with the hamstone name sign at the south of the village. It is assume that the northern end should match. Please let us know if you think differentl

Existing hamstone sign and banner at the south of the village. It is intended that the gate would be installed behind the stone and a gatepost on the opposite verge.

Behind the Stone will be a symbolic gate. This might comprise to gate posts and 3, 4 or 5 rails, perhaps with a crossmember? On the other side of the road , the verge is quite narrow and might only have room for a single gate post. At the northern site there may be room for short length of fence. What do you think?

We have a quote for a new stone, at £760 installed. However, the engraving is much more expensive. What would you like to see engraved on the stone? NORTH PERROTT alone will add about £1,005 to the cost. Adding CONSERVATION AREA or 15th CENTURY FOUNDATIONS would double that cost.

An alternative would be to have a highways sign similar to the 20’s plenty sign on the existing banners. This might be on the opposite side of the road to the hamstone sign? Would you approve of that or do you have differnt idea?

Visual representation of what could be achieved.
Visual representation of what could be achieved.

It’s not easy to mock up a picture of exactly what it could look like but I hope you now have an idea of what we would like to see at both ends of the village. Please come along to the meeting tomorrow and take part in the conversation.

Visual representation of what could be achieved.

Notification of Meetings on 16th May

Because of the local elections on 5th May, the normal bi-monthly meeting of the Parish Council has had to be delayed until tomorrow, Monday 16th May. The programme of meetings is as follows:

7.00pm – Villlage meeting – no agenda (but village groups have been invited to present an annual report)

7.30pm – Annual Meeting of NPPC – Summary of the previous year by the outgoing Chairman, swearing in of new Council members and election of officers and co-option of Councillors.

Following the Annual Meeting the first bi-monthly meeting of the new NPPC.

Download the Agenda here

View previous Minutes here

POLLING DAY – Thursday 5th May

The Village Polling Station in the Hoskyns Memorial Hall is open all today until 10pm.

If nothing else, the war in Ukraine should concentrate our minds on the value of living in a free democracy. Opinion is divided on whether voting is a right or an obligation but this is a chance to exercise our democratic right that others do not have or are having taken from them.

What are we voting for? This a local election where Parish, Town and Somerset County Councils are being elected.

COUNTY COUNCIL – Somerest is about to enter a one year transition from County Council (with Disctrict Councils below it) into a Unitary Council. The County Councillors elected today will stand for one year as County Councillors, while the Unitary Body is developed and then transfer to Unitary Councillors in 12 months time. This is an incredibly important transition that is meant to save money. Anyone involved in local governemnt will know that change often costs more money than it saves, so it is vitally important the the new council is filled with competant and hardworking people. North Perrott is in the Coker Ward. Each Ward will have two councillors, so you can put up to TWO crosses against candidates that you suppport.

PARISH COUNCIL – there were only 3 nominees for the 5 places on the North Perrott Parish Council. This means that there will be no Parish Council election in North Perrott this time round. 3 Councillors are enought to form a quarate and so the new council will meet on Monday 16th May at 7.30pm. There will be a Village Meeting immediately before that, at 7pm. Both meetings will be in the Hoskyns Memorial Hall. The Agenda and previoius minutes are available on this website.