Parish Brief This is the first of what is intended to be a regular section of our new magazine. We will aim to review the Parish Council’s activities over the last three months and inform you on our aims for the months to come. As you will see elsewhere in this magazine, the main event has been the construction and installation of new play facilities within the parish, culminating in their opening on 2nd August by Mark Reckless, MP for Rochester and Strood and by Cllr Josie Isles, Mayor of Medway. These facilities comprise new equipment designed for use by the under 5s in the playpark at Wainscott Recreation Ground, situated behind the Frindsbury Extra Memorial Hall in Holly Road; together with play equipment suitable for all ages and a multi use games area situated just off Hoo Road on Wainscott Fields. Whichever site the equipment is on, everything is intended for use by all residents of the parish, their families and friends and indeed anyone who finds it attractive. I know that a family from Hoo has discovered the Wainscott Fields playpark and they love it. Nothing is for the exclusive use of any section or area of the community and was not provided as such. Wainscott Fields? Where is that? The plans for the Crest Nicholson “Liberty Park” development, which 4
encompasses the former MoD land on one side of Hoo Road and the former Church Commissioners land on the other side, included an area of public open space. The intention had been for this to be handed over to Medway Council in due course. However, when the Parish Council asked if they could site a multi use games area on this land, the developer offered the land to the Parish Council. Medway Council agreed to this and the open space has now been transferred into the Parish Council’s ownership. After some debate and much head scratching, it was decided to give this land the name of Wainscott Fields. The name “says what it does on the tin” and there won’t be any confusion with the developer’s marketing name for its housing development. In the future the Parish Council wants to develop Wainscott Fields as an asset and as an amenity for parishioners and would welcome any suggestions or ideas. Obviously any plans will be long term and may not be implemented until Crest Nicholson have completed their building and have vacated the site. The Parish Council is now occupying its new meeting room at the rear of the hall. This is bigger than the former upstairs meeting room, accommodating more members of the public and is now compliant with the Disability Discrimination Act. The Frindsbury Extra Parish Council
fact that there are no longer stairs to climb has been much appreciated by a councillor with new knees and another with a foot injury – apart from the members of the public who might previously have been unable to sit in on parish council meetings. I would like to thank Crest Nicholson for donating new tables and chairs. Otherwise the Parish Council has continued with its usual work, commenting as a statutory consultee on planning matters to the local planning authority (Medway Council); maintaining its land and other property; letting its allotments (one plot is currently vacant) and generally conducting normal business. During the winter there are plans to enhance the garden areas at the hall by re-turfing and planting a “tapestry hedge” round the fence at the back and by tidying up and doing some planting at the front. There will be additional planting on the village green at Lower Upnor. We will have to assess the new requirements for managing the land at Wainscott Fields and the plan is to amalgamate all the greenspaces jobs we have and to go out to tender for the first time for a single annual maintenance contract. Parishioners in Upnor may remember we have plans (and outline planning permission) for the environmental enhancement of the riverside at Lower Upnor. Apart from some landscaping of the village green, so far nothing has happened. This is because the MoD depot site became available Frindsbury Extra Parish Council
for development and the scheme was put on hold until development plans had been approved. Any plans might impinge on our own plans and we need to see whether we could proceed with our original ideas or whether we will have to do a radical rethink. What would you like the Parish Council to do? Please let us know and it will be considered. You can contact us either through the Clerk or by using the “contact us” section of our website or by getting in touch with any parish councillor. All meetings are open to members of the public, who may observe proceedings. However, the Chairman will usually allow a suspension of the meeting for a member of the public to speak, for instance to explain a planning application that is under consideration and at the end of the meeting ask anyone in attendance if there is anything they wish to raise. You are most welcome and we look forward to seeing you. Roxana Brammer Parish Clerk
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1st issue October 2013 - January 2014