White Horse, Cherhill, Lansdowne Monument, Wiltshire, England

IMPORTANT NOTICE, please share widely – There are a lot of Local Service Responsibilities that Wiltshire Council is responsible for (and have been paid for) that are now being ‘dumped’ onto the Town & Parish Councils of Wiltshire without the additional resources and funding to provide them.

Wiltshire Council is at the same time looking to hold onto all our assets (Building & Land) that were obtained for and on behalf of our Communities, requiring us to Lease or Rent them back at Commercial Rates, or sell them off to the highest bidder to Private Developers.

Calne Town Council (and other Town & Parish Councils) will be expected pick up on and pay for these ‘dumped’ services out of the small proportion of the ‘Rates’ that we already currently get. The resources needed to continue the services (like Youth Services)

This will mean that your Rates paid to Wiltshire Council will continue to go up to cover their failing services, while the Town Council will be forced to increase its own Rate Levey (It is called a Precept) to Town People, or allow critical community services to fail.

The Grove Youth Club and Recreation area is the Resource that is currently under threat of ‘Selling Off by Wiltshire Council as it makes any proposal to justify retaining it almost impossible.

We have not had enough firm proposals from enough Community Groups (and other Interested Parties) to satisfy the high level of justification that Wiltshire Council demands before considering giving these valuable resources back to the Towns.

Once they are sold they are gone forever. I warned of this when the Unitary Authority of ‘Wiltshire’ was first proposed. They are too far removed from local Communities to care about their negative impact on us.

The only way we can protect these valuable resources and pay for the costs of taking on the massive responsibilities that Wiltshire is no going to stop providing is if Community Groups and Organisations getting together to put forward proposals to us as to how they can use them.

Such organisations can obtain funding for such projects, which would offset the cost of acquiring these facilities from Wiltshire. It can also help Organisations to generate income. In this way, it can offset the costs that arise, which would otherwise have to be passed on in the way of Rates / Council Tax.

I cannot emphasise enough how important this is to the continued Life & Saul of our Town(s). The work involved in making a proposal we can put to Wiltshire does not have to be complicated. We have very little time. January is the end of the line.

At this stage, we need good outline proposals that would benefit as many people and groups in the community as possible. These can be individual groups or cooperating groups.

Please submit proposals for the use of The Grove, it’s Building and the Recreation Space/Land, to the Calne Town Council, Bank House, The Stand, Calne Wiltshire (opposite Town Hall), or to myself, terry-Couchman@hotmail.com – Tel 07910 173336 for more information.