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.
On Sunday 10th April, a mountain bike was reported abandoned in some woodland in North Perrott. Having made local enquires, it has been concluded that the bike is probably lost or stolen.
This is a medium sized, fully functioning mountain bike that needs to be reunited with it’s owner. There are a number of distinguishing marks that the owner will be able to use to correctly claim it as theirs.
Please share North Perrott/Haselbury/Crewkerne area.
While too early to draw firm conclusions, the village Speed Indicator Device (SID) has completed its first fortnight on station and so there is now data to examine. The SID was installed outside the farm shop on 27th February in the location that all previous traffic monitoring has taken place. It was felt that this was the best place to start, as we now build up a picture of traffic speeds at different points around the village. The SID cannot stay at any one location for more than 2 weeks and cannot return for a further 6 weeks. This ensures that regular traffic does not become accustomed to the sign, which in other locations has proved too be less effective over time.
The average speed over the first fortnight was 31mph. It was also 31mph over both week’s individually. However, daily averages do change slightly, as shown in the first graph. At the moment there is no indication that traffic is faster on any particular day, but this graph may give the community speedwatch group a day to target in the future. The second graph is the average speed by hour. This graph is a little too crowded to decipher using a fortnight’s data but by focusing on just 24hrs, the graph shows clearly that most cars maintain the speed limit between the hours of 9am and 5pm. Outside those hours, speeds are generally faster.
Obviously, the fact that the average speed is close to 30mph means that some cars must be travelling slower and others faster. The Pie chart below shows that the vast proportion of vehicles are slowing to 30mph or below. The pie slices that represent 16-20mph, 21-25mph and 26-30mph amount to 70% of all vehicles passing the SID. 21% travelled at between 31-35mph and 9% exceeded the speed limit by a significant margin. Out of 29,579 vehicles, 3 passed the SID at over 70mph! All three were within daylight hours.
The graph below shows similar data to the Pie chart but in line format. The peak flow on every day is below 30mph and shows similar numbers of cars just under the speed limit to those just over it. Hence an average speed of 31mph.
Last but not least, the graph showing traffic density over time shows a very similar pattern every day. Traffic flow is greatest at between 8am and 9am in the morning (the high peak). Traffic volume slows during the day and builds up over an extended period between 4pm and 6pm in the afternoon (the second peak). Traffic flow drops to almost zero between 11pm and 6am (the deep trough). This pattern is repeated every day and only drops on Saturday and more on Sunday. The next week is a repeat of the same pattern.
The SID has now been moved to above the village green, facing south. Average speeds are expected to be far lower at this point but it will be valuable data to find out how fast traffic does come around the sharp corner and also to assess if any of the high readings in the last fortnight were falseor not. It will take a while to master how to set up the SID for maximum reliability and maximum accuracy.
It is dangerous to draw too many conclusions after just one session but it would appear that the SID has had a significant effect on reducing the speed of traffic through the village. In the past, data collected from static speed devices next to the farm shop have shown average speeds closer to 35mph. Regarding targeting of habitual speeders, the CSW would have most effectiveness between 7am and 8am on any week day. If they want to be seen by the maximum number of vehicles, then the most traffic passes between 8am and 9am or between 4pm and 5pm.
It should also be pointed out that while the A30 remains closed, it is assumed that traffic volumes are depressed and both volume and speeds may increase when there is more commuting to Yeovil, after the 25th March.
Many thanks again to those who have supported the purchase cost of the SID and if anyone is interested in assisting moving the SID once a fortnight, please respond here.
The situation is fluid but it appears that there could be considerable delays at customs, in getting physical relief to Ukraine. James Purefoy, an actor who lives locally and is a ambassador for Action Aid (https://www.actionaid.org.uk/users/james-purefoy) has given Alison the following advice. Anyone wishing to support humanitarian relief in Ukraine or for Ukrainian refugees, then the fastest and most efficient way is to donate cash to a reliable disaster relief fund that his operating in the area. He suggests the Red Cross disaster relief fund https://www.ifrc.org/disaster-relief-emergency-fund-dref
If you have already purchased goods to send to Ukraine, please try to contact Wadham and hopefully someone will have information about what they will be doing with the items already donated. There may actually still be a lorry going anyway.
Alison, our wonderful Church Warden has written the following open letter:
I am sure that we are all constantly thinking of all those who are in such great danger in Ukraine at present. If this is the case, you may, I feel, like to know that we can all help in a small way to help these poor people.
Ruth Bevan-Mogg has told me this morning that Wadham School, Crewkerne is responding to the desperate need which is currently being suffered by many in Ukraine and particularly the women and children who are fleeing from danger, having fled with nothing but what they can carry with them.
A lorry will be going out to Ukraine this weekend from the school to take disposable necessities to those who have emergency need of items for personal hygiene.
The items needed cover disposable things such as nappies, sanitary towels, tooth paste & tooth brushes, soap…
It is planned that the lorry will leave on Sunday, so any items which you may like to send ought to reach the school by Friday evening, to be loaded up on Saturday . ,. However, if you can get them to me or to Ruth by Thursday evening,March 3rd we can arrange for them to be taken in to Crewkerne.
It would be nice if we can feel that we can do something to help, so if you know of anyone else who might like to contribute to this mission of goodwill, please let them know about this.
If anyone would prefer just to donate money we could buy something on their behalf.
Judith Hall has proposed to the Parish Council that the village applies to SSDC for their Wildflower Seed Giveaway and that two areas of grass in the village should be managed for wildlife.
The two areas suggested are the grass verge in Church Lane and the verge of the A3066 opposite the farm shop.
The intention is to introduce spring flowering bulbs and corms under the beech trees. Create a wildflower meadow on the level grass area and hopefully manage the tree stump area to reduce the docks and nettles and replace them with perennial wildflowers.
The roadside verge, where the village has previously established daffodils, it is intended to reintroduce perennial wildflowers in the upper 2/3rds of the grass bank to greatly broaden the number of species along the roadside.
Volunteers are welcome to contact Judith on 78009. Help will shortly be required to sow seeds and transplant seedlings into plugs. Sowing seeds directly into the ground will follow and planting plugs into their final location will happen later in the spring. If you have room for even one seed tray in your greenhouse or conservatory, you can get involved and be part of helping to improve the wildlife in our village.
More news and updates will be provided here in the coming weeks.
North Perrott’s much anticipated SID was finally installed on Sunday 27th Feb 2022. Delays had been caused by a general lack of silicon “chips” that are the programable component of all computers.
The SID is owned and serviced by North Perrott Parish Council and will be used in conjunction and in support of the already well established Community Speed Watch group (CSW). The SID will enable 24/7 collection of data including speed, date, time and location. Unlike the CSW group or traffic cameras, it does not collect any personal information, such as number plates or photographs. It is a valuable extension of our “HGV’s 20 is plenty” campaign, which was started in November 2020 and it is hoped that as well as reducing average speeds of vehicles through the village, it will also help target persistent offenders, enabling the CSW to identify times of peak offences.
We are deeply indebted to A H Warren Trust (Coombe Farm) and Hilton Herbs, who are the main sponsors of our village SID. Both companies have been active in the village for many years and both also hold the safety of horse riders close to their hearts. NPPC is grateful for their generous donations.
It is hoped that these generous donations will be a valuable contribution to keeping our village safer for the future and improving the quality of life for our community, especially pedestrians, horse riders, people with houses directly adjacent to the road and all road users.
Anyone wishing to support the speed safety campaign in North Perrott can do so by donating their time to the CSW group or money toward the future upkeep of the SID. (EDIT: Many thanks to Mr M. Findlay for his generous donation towards the future upkeep)
There are rules on the use of SIDs by Parish Councils and Somerset Highways Authority have clear guidelines based on data collected nationwide. It has been proven that the effectiveness of static SIDs for slowing traffic is diluted over time and so Highways have two major stipulations. Firstly, a mobile SID can only remain in one position for a maximum of two weeks and secondly, that it cannot return within 6 weeks. This means that a minimum of 4 positions are required to fulfill this criteria. This will mean that the SID will be placed at both ends of the village and to protect the Village Green and the junction of Willis Lane, each in turn. This covers the 4 most hazardous areas in the village. The Village Green and Willis Lane can be detected from two different directions, so theoretically, there are 6 useful positions in the village.
On Thursday 13th January 2022 at a service led by the Bishop of Taunton, Ruth Worsley and Archdeacon Simon Hill, Rev Christopher James Davis was inducted as the Rector of the Wulfric Benefice.
Christopher, more commonly know as “CJ” and his wife Mary, will be living in the Vicarage in North Street, Crewkerne. Following the retirement of Jonathan Morris, our new Rector will have the ultimate responsibility for all of the parishes within the Wulfric Benefice including Crewkerne, Hewish, Haselbury Plucknett, North Perrott, Misterton and Wayford. This is no small task and he will being supported by retired clergy, Church Wardens, members of the Parochial Church Councils and many other volunteers. We look forward to meeting him at regular community and worship gatherings around the Benefice and particularly those that take place in North Perrott.