Recreation Ground Town AGM Report 2022
Since the revamp of the signage to encourage dog walkers to keep their dogs on a lead on the Rec “in consideration for others”, things have settled down. The older “draconian” signage has largely been replaced as threats of fines for disobedience are patently toothless. The only way is for all to cooperate for the benefit of all, which I’m pleased to say is predominantly the case. Thank you.
Our Lengthsman Dave Buckland continues to do sterling work keeping the grounds tidy and together. Thank you Dave.
Westfield continues to be enjoyed by dog walkers along with their dogs who can run free off their leads. We now have a small collection of fruit trees planted that will bear fruit for all life to enjoy.
Plans to completely refurbish are still in progress. Unfortunately, as ever, money to fund the work is the largest obstacle to overcome. The parents of the growing number of young families in the town are keen to address the issue. To that end the Council have engaged a consultant to lay plans before the town to discuss in an open forum in the near future. Hopefully this will give a consensus overview of what we might collectively want to achieve for the Playground and the whole Recreation Ground area in the future. With luck, this will generate the enthusiasm and energy necessary to make the dream become reality.
Non Adult Football
The good news ….
Boys football is now enjoying the freedom we lost during lockdown under the well managed FA recognised umbrella of Clanfield FC. They have two new Junior teams starting this season. One an under eight boys team, the other an under ten girls side, which is an exciting development BTC applauds.
The not such good news ….
Unfortunately the back pitch the younger teams would normally use has persistent rabbit damage and makes the area less than perfect for the high standard of football all aspire to. Finding a solution is fraught with problems. The continued wilding of the edges that is encouraging wildlife in every form includes the rabbits who are happy to take advantage. It also conseals their presence and hinders the control of their numbers and detering their expansion from their core home across Tanner’s Lane in the Thames Water owned area and beyond. We’ve contacted Thames Water and they are looking into controlling the numbers there, but with little action so far.
The problem of managing the grass to the high standard for the pitches with the regular cuts by the Town’s appointed contractor will shortly be resolved. There will soon be a container near the pavillion for the permanent home of Clanfield FC to house their own mower and they will manage things to their standards at their own expense. The Scouts have contributed a considerable sum to the cost and in return they now have free use of the whole of the container behind the Scout Hut. The old arrangement of sharing was not good for both parties and will soon be resolved.
Finally, I will be standing down from my second term as a Councillor at the coming election and focusing on my “Bucket List” while I/we are able. I would therefore take this opportunity to give a big thank you to all of my colleagues on the Council who I have worked with over the last five years. Their time and commitment is given freely. The problems faced are often no win situations. They are dealt with diligently to the best of their joint abilities (some of which are considerable), and all do it freely for the Town we all love.
I wish my successor, and all those elected for the next term, every success with your continued support.
Cllr Frank Triggs
BTC Recreation Ground Chairperson