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News Archive - May 2008

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Pub Race off to a flying start

The weather stayed fine for the 19 teams that took part in the first Whitchurch Festival 2008 event, the pub race.

Starting from the Railway Hotal the teams wound their way through the Town (and its pubs to the Longmeadow Sports Centre.

Organiser Rob Dunlop was very pleased with the event which has raised some £1,200 towards the festival funds. The event ended in a disco at the Longmeadow Sports Centre where the Mayor Pete Williams presented the prizes to the winners of the three categories. Fastest Team - Hawaian Beachboys; Most Money Collected - Alcopops; Best Fancy Dress - Monty Python and the Silly English Kniggits


Fastest Team

Most Money Collected

Fancy Dress


Hawaian Beach Boys


Silly English Kniggits


Elite Runners

Kiss Fist




Dalai Lamas

Dalai Lamas


Last week vandals damaged 2 cars in Oakland Road by walking over the tops of them. One was a softtop so considerable damage was done and the other had its tyres let down. Luckily this sort of thing is uncommon in Whitchurch but one of the victims urges anyone else experiencing the same problems to report them to the police so that the size of the problem can be properly judged and appropriate preventive action taken.

Spring eYe is Here

The Spring edition of the eYe is on-line and downloadable here. A hard copy version will be delivered to every household with the June edition of Update, at the beginning of June.

Bloswood Lane Resurfacing

Basingstoke & Deane have announced that Bloswood Lane will be closed from Dirty Corner to Lower Evingar Road/Wells Lane for resurfacing for approximately 3 weeks sometime after 2 June. The council state that "Reasonable facilities will be provided to allow access to adjacent premises while the work is being carried out". Full details and exact timing will be included in letter drops to residents in the area.

A map showing the closure and the proposed diversion, via Evingar Road, Newbury Road and Harroway is here.

Pub Race is Here

There's still time to enter a team for the race, which will be the major event of next weekend's Bank Holiday.

The first team in fancy dress will leave the Railway Hotel at 4.30pm on Sunday 25th. The event is the first of this Summer's Whitchurch Festival. Teams can be of 3 to 5 and MUST be in fancy dress. They will start at the Railway Hotel in turns from 4.30pm and proceed to each of the Town's pubs where they will take a drink. They will finish (sometime later) at the Sports and Social Club in Winchester Road.

The object of the exercise is to have fun and raise money for the Town's charities. So please turn up, whether you enter a team and collect money on your journey or you support them on their way and give generously. There are prizes for the fastest team, the best dressed team and the team collecting most money. Full details of the rules and an entry form are on the Festival's web site at or from all the Town's pubs.

The White Hart is supporting the event by offering the TEAMS free beer!!

The Town's Benches

The Town Council received complaints that evening users of a seat at the Winchester Road Recreation Ground were causing a public nuisance. Following consultation with the local police, the bench was removed. Councillors have since received a number of complaints from people who use the seat during the day - particularly those who liked to take a welcome rest on their return from doing their daily shopping. In order to accommodate the needs of as many people as possible the Council has agreed to re-install the seat on a trial basis, just off the path, on an old concrete base left from a dismantled shelter.

Another seat has been attracting anti-social and potentially dangerous behaviour. Do you currently use the bench seat situated along the footpath from Chatter Lane to London Road? If it was removed, would you be inconvenienced? Let us know your opinion, by phoning 892107, e-mailing [email protected], or by dropping a note through the Town Hall letter box.

Lib Dems hold their seats

With a relatively (within the borough) high turn out, the sitting Lib Dems held their seats in the bourough council elections. The percentage difference between the parties was smaller than in any recent election.

Overall in the borough, Conservatives have acheived overall control with 35 of the 60 seats. This is a change from their being the largest party with no overall control before the elections.



  Eric Dunlop (Lib Dem)
  Keith Watts (Lib Dem)
  Bill Judge (Conservative)
  Therese Coffey (Conservative)

It would appear that not every one of the 1818 voters voted for 2 candidates - 2 papers were spoiled.

  Comparison with previous results:
May 2007
Oct 2007
  Lib Dem














Annual Town Assembly fills the Gill Nethercott Hall

In the third meeting held in 4 days a full hall and the local press full heard details of what's been happening in the Town for the last year and news of developments in policing and the fire service.

The Mayor, Steve Robbins, chaired the event and explained the Town Council's plans for the coming year including how it would have to juggle the legal demands of health and safety legislation in the cemetery and the need to handle the issue sensitively.

Mr Tommy Carr, Group Manager for Hampshire Fire and Rescue explained the plans for the Fire Service in the area and made a plea for more volunteers to become retained firemen and women.

A very detailed explanation of the new policing arrangement came from Basingstoke's Chief Inspector Jill Baldry.

Local volunteers explained how their organisations had fared during the last 12 months and how their hopes for 2008/9. Reports were given by the Millennium Green Trust, the Parish Hall Committee, the Town Hall Trust, the Whitchurch Association, Whitchurch Welfare Trust, Whitchurch Youth Project, Working4Whitchurch, the and the 2 borough councillors.

The reports and details of the discussions can be obtained form the Town Hall and will be published on this site when they are available.

Hustings 2008

A small but very interested crowd turned up to the hustings organised by Mike Stead to question the candidates in the Borough Council elections. The reason both of Whitchurch's seats are being contested is because of boundary changes since the last elections

Therese Coffey, Eric Dunlop and Keith Watts each gave a short introductory speech and then answered detailed questions on their views on, parking, traffic calming, housing, youth issues and the environment. In answering the questions, the audience learned much about the powers of the borough and county councils. Bill Judge took the opportunity to do some electioneering elsewhere.

Pubs Race is Back

After a gap of over 10 years the event will be back on 25th May. Teams of 3 to 5 in fancy dress will visit all 8 pubs in the town. There will be prizes for the best dressed team, the fastest team and the team collecting most money for charity.

Starting at the Railway Hotel from 4.30pm onwards teams will follow a route that takes them to the Prince Regent, the Red House, the White Hart, the Bell, the Kings Arms, the Harvest Home and finally the Longmeadow Sports and Social Club. The teams will be roped together and provide an interesting spectacle for the late May Bank Holiday Sunday.

Full details are on the Whitchurch Festival website where the rules and an entry form can be downloaded, they are also available at all the Town's pubs. Entry forms should be returned to any of the pubs.

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