The next meeting will be at 8pm on Monday 21st January at the Stonewater Common Room. All residents welcome (but please let us know ahead of the date if you're coming)!!
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Tuesday, 29 September 2015

It's all h-armless ....

Two residents of Masefield Crescent met each other this week in the Trauma Clinic of the John Radcliffe hospital, both nursing broken arms.  All you others out there in Masefield Crescent - take care, in case things really do go in threes!!!!

Friday, 25 September 2015

Pages

Don't forget to check out our new page Councillors News for details of our local Town and District Councillors, plus their news of what's happening in your area.

Also our Gardening page is very useful, helping you prepare for each season - written by Martin Gulliver, plus other pages that can all be found above in the links.

Neighbourhood Watch

A Neighbourhood Watch scheme has been started in Medlicott Drive. Residents will remember that there was a piece in the Spring newsletter saying that a scheme can be started by calling Carol Rudd, the Watch Scheme Co-ordinator at Abingdon Police Station, on 01235-556937 or carol.rudd@thamesvalley.pnn.police.uk

The volunteer coordinator for Medlicott Drive says that the scheme was very easy to establish and he feels that it is very beneficial for residents. He is happy to guide other volunteer coordinators through the process - please contact Martin through the TFLRA at tfl_ra@zoho.com or phone 07732251334 to leave a message.

Update - Drayton Road

Following the resurfacing of the road, it was noticed that the stretch from Mill Road to the pedestrian crossing wasn’t included. We raised this point with the County Council and their reply was ‘with regards to the additional section of carriageway up to the Mill Road junction, we can appreciate that this road is not in good condition and that this causes concern. When the authority first considered Drayton Road for maintenance, the most deteriorated section of carriageway was put forward for treatment. The scope of the scheme was later reviewed and increased to include an additional deteriorated area. Unfortunately with a limited budget for maintenance treatments across the county we were not able to increase the scope any further without taking funds away from other, potentially more deteriorated sections of the network. We recognise that this is far from ideal, however we will consider the additional section for a future maintenance/resurfacing scheme’.

Update - Bus Subsidy Cuts

The cuts to bus service 41 will have been in place for a couple of months now. The committee has been told that ceasing to go to Tesco’s is causing people the most problems. Unless the County Council can increase their bus subsidies or Thames Travel change their mind about the route of the 41, there seems little prospect of this situation changing. We can only suggest that people affected, write to their County Councillor or possibly their MP.

A Walk on the Wildside

by Max the Wildlife Watcher - Being new to this area I was quickly amazed by the range of habitats on our doorstep. Whether it was the farmland off Mill Road, the meandering River Ock with its reed beds, to the tree lined River Ock Valley Walk. I soon got to wondering what hidden wildlife secrets would be revealed. Some of my nature highlights spotted so far are hedgerows brimming with butterflies and moths, a quick blue flash of a kingfisher skimming the River Ock on the valley walk and spotting a family of four fallow deer between the ‘pooh stick’ bridge on Mill Road and the superstore. Not forgetting the iconic call of the red kite as it patrols our estates on a daily basis. Please let the Newsletter Editor know if anything new catches your eye on tfl_ra@zoho.com or on 07732251334.

Wishing you a wild Autumn.


Overgrown Footpaths

We talked to our local Councillors about the state of the footpath between Chaunterell Way and Tescos. We were pleased to see that the Vale Council has now cleared the path of overgrown vegetation. Thank you to our Councillors for their help. We have also contacted the Vale Council about the very poor surface of the path, which is deeply rutted and becoming difficult to walk on. The Vale Property Team are inspecting the path and will let us know what remediation work can be done. We will put an update on the blog when we get this information. Residents have also pointed out that the footpath between Burton Close and Drayton Road is also getting obstructed with vegetation now. We are taking this up with the County Council as they own and manage this footpath.

The Wilts & Berks Canal

The Wilts & Berks Canal was opened in 1810 and ran about 52 miles from Semington to the Thames in Abingdon carrying mostly coal from the Somerset coalfields. The canal declined towards the end of the 19th century due to competition from the railways and was finally abandoned by an Act of Parliament in 1914. Much of the historic route has survived and was rediscovered by Jack Dalby whose book about the canal inspired others to consider restoration, leading eventually to the formation of the Wilts & Berks Canal Trust.
In South Abingdon remnants of the old canal can be seen by those who know where to look. Wharf Cottage in Wilsham Road is a former canal building and the iron bridge in Caldecott Road, erected by the Canal Company in 1824, spans the River Ock linking St Helen's Wharf and the Wilts & Berks Wharf.
We can only imagine the busy scenes when the canal traffic was at its height with boats moored and others disgorging their loads of coal. The canal terminal basin was in Caldecott Road between the Recreation Ground and the road itself. It is now possible to walk on the grass where once narrowboats were moored and the line of trees marks the line of the towpath. The canal route (under the wide grassy verge next to the road) is filled in all along Caldecott Road and the slight rise at the junction with Drayton Road is where a bridge used to carry the Drayton Road over the canal. In Byron Close they have the canal route in their back gardens and at the slightly elevated point in Mill Lane, the route of the canal can be seen to the right marked by overgrown twin hedges. Walking further along Mill Lane we come to New Cut Mill (also known as Bugg's Mill) which has the historic canal route to its left and the River Ock to its right. The canal route continues to a low bridge under the A34.

Anyone interested in the Canal and the work of the Wilts & Berks Canal Trust will find their website www.wbct.org.uk very informative.

Wednesday, 16 September 2015

The Garden in Autumn - 2015


As the weather turns colder, plants will slow down. Take out any tender bedding and replace with winter bedding. Other hardy bedding should last until the first frosts. Clear fallen leaves from beds and lawns and compost. Put them in a plastic bag, pierce a few holes in it and by next you should have valuable leaf mould. Raise permanent containers off the ground to aid drainage, and wrap tender ones in bubble wrap or fleece. Perennials can be cut back and split up now. Discard the older central part and plant out the fresher outside growths. Some light pruning can be carried out - mainly just to keep larger shrubs in shape. Those that you normally prune in spring, eg roses and buddleia, can be cut back by a third to prevent them loosening their roots in the wind, before the main pruning next year. You can also prune late-summer flowering clematis - cut back to about 1m high to remove long, old growth and encourage strong flowering shoots. Bare rooted plants - normally cheaper than container grown - can be planted now. Finally, while its quiet and not much growth about, check all fences, supports, tools etc and clean/sharpen/paint them.



Tuesday, 1 September 2015

Children's Corner - Winner of Sunflower Competition - Autumn 2015


The winner of the tallest sunflower competition goes to Ellie from Mill Road. Her sunflower grew to 2m 10cm when last measured!! A small prize to the winner!