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Didcot Diary December 2017

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Didcot Town Council

Didcot Diary— December 2017 NEWS Welcome to the December issue of Didcot Diary. The Town Council has had a number of events this last quarter including the Mayors Civic Service and the annual Remembrance Parade, more on these and the Town Council’s Macmillan Coffee Morning overleaf. This edition also contains a new feature ‘Word from the Allotments’ and reports on how Town Council grants have been benefitting local residents. We also have a new Information Centre Manager, Lucy Griffiths following the retirement of Sally Robinson. See page 11 for more information.

Didcot Town Council Office Christmas Opening The Council Offices will close at 12pm on Friday 22nd December 2017 and reopen on Tuesday 3rd January 2017 at 9am. If you have an emergency during this time please contact South Oxfordshire District Council on 01235 422422. Pages 2 3 4 5 6 7 11 12 13 14

Council Offices, Britwell Road Didcot Oxon OX11 7HN

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News Macillan Coffee Morning Mayor’s Civic Service Remembrance Parade Allotment News Grant Aid Reports Staff Changes Parks and Gardens Christmas Refuse Collections Community Events

Phone: 01235 812637 Fax: 01235 512837 E-mail: council@didcot.gov.uk www.didcot.gov.uk


Didcot Town Council Didcot Town Council Macmillan Coffee Morning 2017 The Town Council, the staff of Didcot Fire Station, and a few volunteers joined forces on 29th September to put on a morning of cake, coffee and socialising in aid of Macmillan Cancer Care as part of the charity’s ‘World’s Biggest Coffee Morning’. Great British Bake Off contestant Christine Wallace was helped to choose the best cake. There was an incredible amount of cake made and donated, far more than could be politely consumed, none went to waste as any surplus was given to the Mayor of Didcot's for her Civic Service (held the following Sunday) and the Mother and Toddler Group at St Peter's Church all benefitted from the leftovers. Overall a total of £182.70 was raised in aid of the charity.

Council Offices, Britwell Road Didcot Oxon OX11 7HN

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Phone: 01235 812637 Fax: 01235 512837 E-mail: council@didcot.gov.uk www.didcot.gov.uk


Didcot Town Council Mayor’s Civic Service My Mayor’s Civic service was held on Sunday 1st October at St Peter’s Church in Didcot. I welcomed a wealth of friends, family and dignitaries to join me in this celebration of my year as the Mayor of Didcot. The service was performed by the Rev Hannah Reynolds and also included an address from Danni Dawson, talking about one of my Mayor’s charities – “Didcot (2410) Air Cadets” and also Dave Lee, who spoke to the congregation about my second chosen charity, “Crohns and Colitis (Oxfordshire)” The service was beautiful with prayers and songs throughout, including the choir singing “Sing we merrily” by Adrian Batten. Guests included the High Sheriff of Oxford, Jane Cranston, along with other Mayor’s from around Oxfordshire, councillors. A collection was held to be shared between my two charities and raised just over £200, which I am very thankful for.

Even Mayors have to eat…..

My civic service then ended with plenty of cakes and nibbles, along with wine and tea / coffee and orange juice, for my guests to enjoy. Personally, this was an extra special day for me as it would’ve been my mother’s 81st birthday. I laid flowers at her grave next to the church. Mayor Jackie Billington

Mayor’s Ball 2018 On Saturday 17th March 2018 the annual Mayor’s Ball will be held at the Civic Hall, Didcot, proceeds to the above charities. Booking forms available from the Didcot Town Council Offices, Britwell Road, Didcot, £38 pp.

Council Offices, Britwell Road Didcot Oxon OX11 7HN

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Phone: 01235 812637 Fax: 01235 512837 E-mail: council@didcot.gov.uk www.didcot.gov.uk


Didcot Town Council Remembrance Parade On Sunday 12th November 2017 the annual Remembrance Parade took place in Didcot, leaving Edinburgh Drive car park and finishing at the Memorial by the Civic Hall. Revd Hannah Childs (St Peter’s Church) officiated the service along with Revd Kevin Jones, Padre at Vauxhall Barracks. The Oxford Caledonian Pipe Band led the parade, followed by 11 EOD Regiment along with Ed Vaisey MP, Didcot Town Mayor, Didcot Town Council, and members of the Royal British Legion. These were followed by the Army Cadets, Air Training Cadets, Scouts, Girl Guides, Secondary Schools. Other clubs and societies also took part in the parade. Abbey Brass Band played and Didcot Choral Society sang. Mrs Elizabeth Paris, Deputy Lord Lieutenant of Oxfordshire, led the wreath laying followed by the Mayor with the Town’s wreath. After the service refreshments were served at the Civic Hall where a display of work by children from Stephen Freeman School was on display.

Council Offices, Britwell Road Didcot Oxon OX11 7HN

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Phone: 01235 812637 Fax: 01235 512837 E-mail: council@didcot.gov.uk www.didcot.gov.uk


Didcot Town Council Word from the allotments The Town Council provides over 400 allotments across five sites in the town. In what will be a regular feature, we have asked allotment holders to share what is happening on the allotments. Contributing to this edition we have:

Ask any New Road allotment holder why they have a plot and you’ll probably get a lot of different answers! “It’s being in the fresh air” “Gives me home grown produce” “I have a healthier lifestyle” “Meeting people with the same hobby ”

“It provides social and community value”

“Our allotment provides essential habitats for wildlife”

View across New Road allotments

Those are some of the answers from our allotment holders at New Road when they were recently asked why they took on an allotment. New Road is the largest allotment site in Didcot and can be clearly seen if you travel between Didcot and East Hagbourne. Some of our gardeners have had their plot for over thirty years. Others have just begun this year. Most people think allotments are for retired pensioners but that’s not the case - at New Road we have working mums and dads with plots, who come along with their young budding gardeners (as you can see in the photo) and spend as much time as they can growing unusual veggies such as pak choi and, of course, the obligatory pumpkins for Halloween!

Having fun watering the family plot on a lovely sunny day at New Road Allotments

Giant pumpkin grown by Lawrence on his compost heap at New Road Allotments. It weighed in at a staggering 75lbs

New Road Allotments email: allotments1000@gmail.com Council Offices, Britwell Road Didcot Oxon OX11 7HN

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Phone: 01235 812637 Fax: 01235 512837 E-mail: council@didcot.gov.uk www.didcot.gov.uk


Didcot Town Council Grant Aid Report—Didcot Railway Centre Each year Didcot Town Council makes grants available to local organisations who support people in Didcot. These are recent reports of how they have used that money. If you would like to apply for grant funding from the Town Council please visit www.didcot.gov.uk/Grant-Aid for more details.

Didcot Railway Centre, DRC50 event, Easter 2017 The DRC50 event over Easter 2017 celebrated Didcot Railway Centre’s 50 years in Didcot. Didcot Railway Centre was open and running trains over the four days of the Easter Holiday period and we were very grateful for the £1000 grant from Didcot Town Council to support the event. The grant covered the cost of the five tonnes of coal that we used running the steam engines. One of the aims of the event was to encourage local people to visit the Railway Centre and our Easter programme of activities was aimed at a family audience. We were charging a premium rate for admission to the event and the grant enabled us to charge our normal rate to local people who showed proof of address in the OX11 area. The Easter event attracted 1488 paying visitors and an additional 250 visitors who were admitted free of charge (under 3s, carers and our own members). This was the highest number of Easter visitors since 2009 (apart from two years when we had a visiting engine, which always increases visitor numbers). The feedback from the event was very positive. We did not have much time to advertise the discount locally (we only heard about the grant three weeks before the event) but did as much publicity as we could with social media and 74 people in total visited at the discounted rate. Previous research has shown that Didcot Railway Centre has a positive effect on the local economy with many visitors spending money in car parks, petrol stations and the local shops. The grant was a great help in meeting some of the costs of attracting people to the town. Thank you once again. Didcot Railway Centre

Council Offices, Britwell Road Didcot Oxon OX11 7HN

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Phone: 01235 812637 Fax: 01235 512837 E-mail: council@didcot.gov.uk www.didcot.gov.uk


Didcot Town Council Grant Aid Report—999 Emergency Fun Day Funds raised from sales of tickets and t-shirts have been be used to contribute towards the total cost of the event. Financial contributions Didcot Town Council £999.00 Sponsor £400 Ticket/t-shirt sales £1050.78 Total £2449.78 Additional costs met by This is my hand fundraising £257.52 As you can see from the report, the cost for the event has increased, however this was necessary to secure the success of the event with additional equipment and have appropriate levels of insurance. I believe that this event has had a positive contribution to the community of Didcot; feedback from the public was very good and the park was busy throughout the day. The mayor of Didcot attended the park and was very pleased with the public engagement she witnessed. The charity walk and emergency service day was reported in local press, drawing further attention to Didcot as a community. I have attached some photographs of the day, the press reports are available from the Oxford mail and Didcot Herald. I would like to thank the council again for supporting this event and awarding the grant of £999.00 which made a significant contribution towards the success of the day.

Council Offices, Britwell Road Didcot Oxon OX11 7HN

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Phone: 01235 812637 Fax: 01235 512837 E-mail: council@didcot.gov.uk www.didcot.gov.uk


Didcot Town Council Grant Aid Reports—Didcot Baby Monday Didcot Baby Monday Since Didcot Town Council generously awarded Didcot Baby Monday with a £1750 grant, we have been delighted that this has enabled us to continue running in the community. One of the main services we have been able to confidently provide every single week (including holidays) has been our lactation consultant, as this is an expense to us which is not covered by any other income. To know we can always offer new mums (particularly first time mums with very young babies) help & support at such a crucial time, has been really wonderful. We are very aware when applying for funding that our group was only 1 of a few options (and nothing in Didcot) to provide feeding support, as well as a space for parents to attend, with no obligation to pay if they cannot. Lisa, our resident lactation consultant says “ The warm welcoming, nonjudgemental support offered by the Didcot Baby Monday team is an invaluable resource to new families in the area and it is a pleasure to work with them, offering infant feeding support alongside them our Health Visiting and Midwifery colleagues. This service is a good example of a sustainable and cost effective way to help new families get off to a good start, with continued support from the local community.” Our other main expense is of course our rent, and the town council grant enable us to provide long term security in a new venue (Didcot Baptist Church) with more options for our group in terms of physical space. Didcot Baby Monday are looking into furthering our connection to PANDAS Foundation UK, to provide further help in the community in relation to pre & post-natal mental illnesses. Grants such as those from the town council better secure our ability to continue and expand our services in the local area. Thank you from all of the Didcot Baby Monday team for helping us to continue in 2017 & 2018! Jade Rouse Group Chair

Council Offices, Britwell Road Didcot Oxon OX11 7HN

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Phone: 01235 812637 Fax: 01235 512837 E-mail: council@didcot.gov.uk www.didcot.gov.uk


Didcot Town Council Grant Aid Report—Victim Support Victim Support Report for Didcot Town Council The grant funding was requested in order to increase, and more specifically to double, the number of volunteers currently covering the Didcot area. This was to be achieved by holding a core training event in Didcot, as evidence shows that the location of our training strongly affects the number of local volunteers who enrol. The training was held successfully in February, and it led to four new volunteers who are currently covering the Didcot area for core crime. Before the training started we were left with only one active volunteer to cover the area, so I am pleased to report we have quadrupled volunteer capacity with the training you have co-funded. For further information, Victim Support has dealt with 436 referrals in the Didcot area (postcode OX11) since the end of the training (March 2017). This has included such crimes as assault, theft, fraud and domestic abuse related crimes. Not all referred victims request support from a volunteer; a significant number of them only receive information of immediate emotional support from an initial response officer, and some are allocated to a caseworker, usually when their needs are more complex. As ever, we are enormously grateful for Didcot Town Council’s support. Kostas Panagiotou Senior Victims Services Delivery Manager

Council Offices, Britwell Road Didcot Oxon OX11 7HN

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Phone: 01235 812637 Fax: 01235 512837 E-mail: council@didcot.gov.uk www.didcot.gov.uk


Didcot Town Council Staff Changes New Information Centre Manager (part-time) On Thursday 26th October we welcomed Lucy Griffiths as the new Information Centre Manager who will, amongst other things, be the main point of contact for the Town Council’s allotments. Lucy joins us after working for Toys UK for 8 years meaning she has excellent customer service skills: come and see for yourself. Already she has proven a great asset to the team. A few getting to know you questions for Lucy: What’s your favourite film? Grease What’s your favourite food? Chinese Who’s your favourite actor? Melissa McCarthy What kind of music do you like? Pop and Chart music What do you like to do in your spare time? Spending time with the family, reading and baking

Lucy has taken over the role vacated by Sally Robinson (left) who retired from the Town Council after two years with us. Sally helped with organising a number of excellent events, including the 2016 Town Fayre. We wish her a long and happy retirement.

Council Offices, Britwell Road Didcot Oxon OX11 7HN

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Phone: 01235 812637 Fax: 01235 512837 E-mail: council@didcot.gov.uk www.didcot.gov.uk


Didcot Town Council Parks and Gardens All the parks have had their autumn clean up with hedges being cut & most of the leaves have now fallen & have been removed. The area around the Civic hall has been tidied with the shrubs trimmed & the summer bedding plants have been removed & replaced with long flowering winter pansies. The lakes at Ladygrove are continuing treatment with ECO Tabs which appear to be improving the water quality & keeping the blue algae at bay. This treatment will continue for another year & will be regularly monitored. The fishing club have paid to have 2 additional floating islands installed on the small lake. Some new fishing pegs are to be fitted next year starting around the large lake. A new swing for less able children has been installed at Ladygrove Park play area.

Council Offices, Britwell Road Didcot Oxon OX11 7HN

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Phone: 01235 812637 Fax: 01235 512837 E-mail: council@didcot.gov.uk www.didcot.gov.uk


Didcot Town Council District Council Christmas Refuse Collections Normal collection day

Revised collection day

Which bin

Friday 29th December 2017

Tuesday 2nd January 2018

Grey & food

Friday 5th January 2018

Monday 8th January 2018

Green & food

Friday 12th January 2018

Saturday 13th January 2018

Grey & food (early collection)

Plastic Bags can now be used to line food waste bins Residents in Southern Oxfordshire can now use plastic bags to line their food waste bins and caddies. Food waste is collected every week and taken to Agrivert’s anaerobic digestion plant near Wallingford to be recycled into gas for electricity and fertiliser for local farmland. The processing plant is now able to accept thin plastic bags, such as carrier bags, bread bags, paper wrappings, or normal pedal bin liners. Residents can also continue to use compostable bags or newspapers to line their caddies and bins, or put food straight in without any liner. Any bags used as liners will be removed at the processing plant and sent to an Energy Recovery Facility to be turned into energy.

Litter pick 2018 Are there any areas of Didcot Parish that you want to nominate? The Town Council would like to know any areas in need of a cleaning blitz as potential candidates for its 2018 litter pick. If you want to nominate somewhere within the parish boundary, please e mail council@didcot.gov.uk with

Council Offices, Britwell Road Didcot Oxon OX11 7HN

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Phone: 01235 812637 Fax: 01235 512837 E-mail: council@didcot.gov.uk www.didcot.gov.uk


Didcot Town Council

Council Offices, Britwell Road Didcot Oxon OX11 7HN

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Phone: 01235 812637 Fax: 01235 512837 E-mail: council@didcot.gov.uk www.didcot.gov.uk


Didcot Town Council

Council Offices, Britwell Road Didcot Oxon OX11 7HN

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Phone: 01235 812637 Fax: 01235 512837 E-mail: council@didcot.gov.uk www.didcot.gov.uk


Didcot Town Council

Council Offices, Britwell Road Didcot Oxon OX11 7HN

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Phone: 01235 812637 Fax: 01235 512837 E-mail: council@didcot.gov.uk www.didcot.gov.uk


Didcot Town Council

Council Offices, Britwell Road Didcot Oxon OX11 7HN

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Phone: 01235 812637 Fax: 01235 512837 E-mail: council@didcot.gov.uk www.didcot.gov.uk


Didcot Town Council Useful Telephone Numbers

Didcot Town Council—01235 812636 Civic Hall—01235 512436 South Oxfordshire District Council—01235 422422 Didcot Library—01235 813103 Citizens Advise Bureau— 03444 111 444 Police (non urgent) - 101 Didcot Hospital—01865 904423 Didcot Animal Sanctuary—07552 651374 Out of hours doctors/dentist—111 Abingdon Hospital (Minor injury Units/First Aid) - 01865 904346

Council Offices, Britwell Road Didcot Oxon OX11 7HN

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Phone: 01235 812637 Fax: 01235 512837 E-mail: council@didcot.gov.uk www.didcot.gov.uk

December 2017  
December 2017  
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