St Hilary Community Website

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Village Forum

Village Forum - Current position (16 August 2017)

The inaugural village forum was held on in April 2016 with follow-up meetings in September and April 2017.
The next meeting was scheduled for 18 September, but has been postponed pending the decision of Llanfair Community Council about adoption of the phone box at its next meeting on 7 September.  The Forum meeting will be rescheduled when it is clear what needs to be done - most likely in early October.
Click here for the aims and purpose of the forum.

The main activities to date have included:

  • purchase, installation and maintenance of a new village notice board
  • leading a campaign to adopt the red telephone box
  • an annual spring plant sale
  • an annual autumn produce market
  • a bi-annual village bake-off
  • ongoing planting in No Man's Land
  • litter picking (in conjunction with the walking group)
  • path and stile maintenance
  • improving access up to the Clump
  • clearing and maintaining the iron bench on St Hilary Down
  • developing a calendar of village events and activities (work in progress) 

Here are the results of the analysis of the activities of the four task and finish groups.

Task and Finish Group
(first named is lead)
Greyed out = closed
Status / response
Ongoing village activity
Charlie, Helen, Liz, Pete, Simon
Planting and maintenance of pump garden / no man's land
OK at present - team will arrange group to tidy up in the autumn
Some unsold shrubs and bedding plants from plant sale were planted and daffodils will be planted in time for Spring.
Bakers for foraging market in October
Done and a survey was carried out at the plant sale by Monica and Caroline
Village grass cutting
Owned by VoGBC, several cuts a year - danger that will be lost if village cut it
Plants for plant sale
Done - plant sale held
Church grass cutting
Volunteer has come forward.  Also, email sent and web posting asking for more volunteers
  Bin screen by Lodge
Council has put in hard standing - not much else can be done
Litter clearance
Done - 28th May &  4 June 2016 - this will be done on a regular basis
New choir members
Email sent and information has been put on the web
New events 
Caroline, Ewa, Monica, Gill
Explore combining several ideas put forward at the forum - see below - into a summer event:  a St Hilary Day.  (Actual St. Hilary Day is 13 January).  Ongoing. (Note a Village Fete was held on 15 July 2017)
Food festival, updated village people photo, ballroom dancing, more support for village events, Welsh and Scottish dancing twmparth (sic), swimming/sports children’s summer sports day at Coed Hills, St Hilary Saint’s day
Coach trip
Agricultural event, sheep shearing
Big issues with Health & Safety and RSPCA
Also, last thing that farmers want to do is shear sheep for pleasure!
Calendar Set up a calendar / overview of recurring  & current year’s events to inform decision making for various groups in and connected to the village - done.
Contacts list
Update/ create a contacts list for groups using the village hall and/or connected to the village to help: a) ease of communicating (many details are held by Terry and/or on the website) b) effective publicity - in hand, dependent on village noticeboard - done.
Foraging event
Survey villagers and interested parties for feedback on inaugural foraging day and new ideas - done at plant sale and now put on the website.
Coach trip
Share ideas for a village outing - NSPCC ran a coach trip in 2016
Organised walks
Terry has produced an information sheet on this and there are leaflets on self-guided walks on the website and in the Bush.
Usage of telephone box
The Community Council has confirmed that BT would transfer ownership. A proposal is being  worked up and submitted to Llanfair CC.
Booking village hall
Consider a ‘How to book the village hall info sheet. On notice boards and/or website - done.
 Vale Council stuff
Terry, Bruce, Tim
Signs at A48 junction obstruct the view
This is the response from the Vale Council:
With regard to the finger posts signs referred to at the meeting, I have arranged for my maintenance teams to inspect the existing signs and any damage with a view to making repairs wherever this is practicable. I reviewed the lamp post within the visibility splay on the A48 north of St Hilary and would advise that I consider there to be negligible impact on highway safety with motorists able to obtain sufficient visibility to the east from the junction if appropriate and due care is taken to position their vehicles appropriately at the give way line. (Michael Clogg, Highways Manager)
Sleeping policemen
The council will not fund (and the room was split).  But, there is the possibility of villagers being trained in the use of speed guns and then using DVLA to warn the drivers.  However, there was no response to a subsequent email asking for volunteers but apparently names have been submitted to the Community Council.
Litter bin
Being taken forward to Llanfair CC - VoGBC will not provide
The Clump
A task group will explore ongoing maitenance of the Clump and upkeep of the two benches - done
Clump track
A few stepping stones have been laid. Areas have beeen cleared of earch and mud as a pilot.
Clearer and fewer road signs in village
Need to clarify exactly what the problem is
Through traffic signs
Raised at the Community Council - no response from Vale CBC.
Village map
Link with phone box - done - in notice board
Village notice board
Co-operative working 
Andrew, Alex, Ewart, Beth
Oil/log purchasing consortia  Considered - but no critical mass.
Tree planting strategy
There was a plan to plant 90 trees to mark the Queen's 90th birthday, but identifying suitable land was difficult. Details of a company that will provide trees free of charge to be circulated within the village.
Babysitting circle
No demand
Dog sitting and walking Too complex
Dog poo bins
Council would fit but villagers must manage it - no volunteers came forward (since then some have been provided by a supplier)
Cat minders
No demand

Other matters that will be considered:

  •  Updated list of villagers
  •  IT workshop
  •  Village logo

Andrew Pitman, Convenor This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

The next meeting was scheduled for 18 September, but has been postponed pending the decision of Llanfair Community Council about adoption of the phone box at its next meeting on 7 September.  The Forum meeting will be rescheduled when it is clear what needs to be done - most likely in early October.


About the Village Forum

The St Hilary Village Forum is an opportunity to meet fellow villagers informally to discuss village things.  Any villager can attend forum meetings.
There are 4 task and finish groups:
1   General village activity eg litter picking and path maintenances
2   Village events, such as plant sales and produce market
3   Things that involve statutory bodies, such as road signage
4   Co-operative working, including tree planting
The Forum is a unconstituted community association.  Decisions are agreed by the leads of the four task and finish groups, based on the discussions and feedback from the forum meetings. 

Meet – Share – Gossip - Discuss

Amongst many other things, we can discuss:

• What's happening in the village – an events update

• What's not happening in the village – eg broadband

• What needs to be done – eg roads, paths, signs

• What's coming up – local and national celebrations

• What would be useful on the village website

• Who's who and who's doing what

• What people would like to happen in the village – both children and grown-ups

Ideas that have previously been thrown into the pot include Queen's 90th birthday celebration, a bake off, book club, whisky club, open gardens, boules team or competition, treasure hunt, an extended foraging day, hill walking, daffodil planting, magazine telephone box and much, much more!

Why hold a village forum?

There is already lot of activity in the village:

• The Village Hall Committee hosts the St David's Day and safari suppers and ad-hoc events.

• In addition to Sunday services, the Church holds the thanksgiving supper, summer lunch, coffee mornings and other events.

• The Choir is busy with Remembrance Day and carol services as well as helping lots of other groups in and around the village.

• Liz and Andy at the Bush support the village with quizzes, Easter and Christmas celebrations.

• Charities, including MacMillan and NSPCC, hold regular events and there are other charitable activities every year, including quizzes and the Ride for Dave.

• There have also been foraging markets, jubilee celebrations, plant sales and afternoon teas.

• The Community Council is responsible for delivering local services and upkeep of local amenities but has limited funds, covers a wider area than St Hilary and few villagers are fully aware of all of its role and activities

However, people have told us that there isn't anything in the village that takes a village-wide perspective. For example, the main purpose of the Village Hall Committee is to maintain the hall, the Church is serving the needs of the congregation and the charities are focussed on their causes. All that is great and also provides the opportunity for the village to come together.

But there is no one place where:

• People can find out what's going on

• Air issues and concerns

• Put forward ideas for activities

• People new to the village can meet other villagers

• Long standing members of the village can meet new villagers

• Gossip can be shared and moans can be aired

So, the purpose of the Village Forum is to meet these needs.

It's not a committee. There will be no officers. And there will be no rules!

Just an opportunity for people to meet to share and discuss.

The intention is to hold the forum twice a year. We'd love it if you could attend and make the first one a success and something to build on. Helping people who freely devote their time and energy on a voluntary basis to continue to make St Hilary such a special place to live.