Election Day. Wake us when it’s over

We agree, it is hard to muster any enthusiasm at all after what must be the most lacklustre election campaign in history. Tomorrow we go to the polls to elect our district council. Does anyone care?

Please do exercise your democratic right, and remember, you have two votes. Make sure you use them both.

There is also a referendum on the alternative voting system. Another lacklustre and confusing campaign.  There is a very good, unbiased explanation here. Hope it helps.

Happy voting.

BloggoVision Preview – Braga Tanga (at the Half Moon, May 29th)

Sunday May 29th is the Bank Holiday cricket match against the Tabard Pilgrims from Chiswick, West London. There should be a lively social scene in the Half Moon afterwards, helped by a BBQ, some decent guest ales (Please, some ESB -Ed) and a new band, Braga Tanga, making their first appearance at the HM. They have very bravely asked to appear on BloggoVision, in the full knowqledge that this clip will either reel the punters in, or keep them away. (If it helps, I liked it -Ed)

More info on the band

Tiptoe softly through the trees – conservationists at work

Horsington Manor
Danger, conservationists at work
Richard Gaunt writes: The half dozen regular users of the footpath between Batchpool Lane and Marsh Lane, dog walkers all, have been intrigued by the “County Wildlife Site” notices, adorned with the South Somerset District Council badge, which have suddenly appeared around the perimeter of the fields between the footpath and the old railway line.
“Please assist ongoing conservation work”, begs the notice.

Underneath there are sterner warnings.
“Use only the designated footpath”.
“All dogs to be kept under close control”.

Heavy stuff, as on the face of it this is arable land which is regularly ploughed, harrowed, seeded, sprayed and harvested using heavy tractors and equipment, and it is difficult to see what adverse effect a few sedate dog  walkers can have on this environment, or how they could upset any conservation work. In the season, there is regular shooting.

I asked Mr Rhys, the agent for the land, owned by Horsington Manor, about the conservation work, but have not had a response.

So I asked the Somerset County Council, who were most helpful.
The Somerset Environmental Records Centre has confirmed that the area is the “Horsington North Park Local Wildlife Site (LWS)”. (Not “County”).

The site was assessed back in 2002/3 when it was given Local Wildlife status because of the important veteran trees, but it appears the site has not been re-visited or assessed since that time. Veteran trees are conserved because they are particularly valuable for wildlife and in Somerset there is a Somerset Wood Pasture, Parkland & Veteran Trees HAP ( Biodiversity Action Plan for Veteran Trees).

These sites have no statutory status and confer no additional rights or obligations on anyone. There are no additional restrictions over agricultural operations, and no new rights of access are created.

No public money has been spent on this site, but ownership of one puts you well up the queue for other grant support, if available.

It all seems a bit of much ado about nothing, and I can’t help thinking the notices are a lot of huff and puff about “Get off my Land”.
Why they have suddenly put up official looking notices with no statutory backing (and promoted the site from a “local” site to a “County” one) after nearly a decade is a mystery.
But if you go near a veteran tree, tiptoe carefully!
Thanks, Richard. More comments welcome. There is more
information at

http://www.somerc.com/local+wildlife+sites/

Pass the mango chutney -curry night is back

The popular Half Moon Curry Night returns on Tuesday 10th May until the end of the month. (Tuesday 31st May).  Then it’s goodbye ruby Tuesday until the autumn. Whatever will the regulars do on Tuesdays?

The deal is £10 for two. A selection of delcious home made curries (Onion baji, naan bread and extra poppadums incur a small additional charge). Drinks not included.

 

Election News: Parking in Wincanton

It has been very quiet on the election front in Horsington. No sign of the candidates, and very few posters around. In Wincanton the feathers are beginning to fly over the issue of parking charges, and it is very difficult to discover what is really going on. More from the Wincanton Window.

Half Moon Music Night -Wednesday 4th May

The friendly and relaxed Half Moon Music Night continues on Wednesday
the 4th May at around 8.45 p.m. in Horsington. Please come and
join us to play, sing and say whilst enjoying a beer; it is completely free
apart from the drinks. Further details from Anna 01963-370749.

Easter Sunday Quiz at the Half moon

Easter Sunday’s quiz was well attended and raised £151.84 for local charities.

The winning team, The Moonies, was booed (albeit in a very light hearted way) because they always win. Actually, they dont. They have taken the top position once more after two quizzes in outer darkness. There is even a rumour that question-setters have taken pity on them and are now setting dolly-drop questions. Surely not!

Thanks to Wincanton Phoenix for organising, and Andrew and Phillipa for hosting, an excellent evening.

Yarlington Fringe promises a super weekend

Yarlington House
Yarlington House, one of the venues for the Yarlington Fringe

It’s all happening at neighbouring Yarlington this weekend. The Yarlington Fringe kicks off with a royal wedding extravaganza at Yarlington House, where you can watch the proceedings on a big screen.

There is a production of Puccini’s La Boheme, which you can join in, or see the performances on Sunday evening.

There’s a barn dance, duck racing, art exhibition,  a circus, morris dancing, plenty of live bands,  a beer festival, childrens activities – in fact something for everyone.

Detailed programme on their website

Runners and Riders in the District Election stakes – 5 May

We are just over two weeks away from the District Council elections AND the referendum on Alternative Voting.

The two current Blackmoor Vale councilors, Tim Inglefield and William Wallace are standing again, in a five-candidate field. Remember – every voter has two votes, so don’t waste the second one.

The  Blackmoor Vale candidates are:
Richard  CRABB  Lib Dem (lives over the border in Sherborne)
Tim INGLEFIELD Conservative (present incumbent, lives Horsington)
David NICHOLS  Independent (lives Henstridge)
Jo PENBERTHY  Labour (lives Cucklington)
William WALLACE Conservative (present incumbent, also a County Councillor, lives Yenston)

South Somerset District council has 60 Councillors. It is currently controlled by the Lib Dems, with 37 seats, against the Conservatives 17, and 6 independents.

The only clear water between the main parties  seems to be  finance, and car parking in market towns like Wincanton. The LibDems want to introduce charges, the Conservatives do not.