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Ref: 3001311336

To Whom it may concern,

Please be advised that Wales & West Utilities are proposing to carry out essential gas mains upgrade work at “Ilfracombe Road, West Down” that will require a road closure. Wales and West Utilities are currently in discussion with Devon County Council to allow for this road closure.

Works are currently scheduled to start 4 May and it is anticipated that this closure will be in place for 18 weeks

I have attached some plans to highlight the section of roads we are proposing to close but should you require further information, please do not hesitate to respond to this e-mail.






Click on image to enlarge










Kind regards,

Simon Lee
Wales & West Utilities
Wales & West House
Celtic Springs
NP10 8FZ

Climate Action Week planning

Some information for you about the Climate Action Week that NDC are co-ordinating across N Devon.

It is agreed that:
• The week will start on Sunday 22nd March and end on Saturday 28th March
• NDC will publicise activities planned during that week across North Devon
• There will be a hashtag for everyone to use (likely to be #NorthDevonClimateAction – awaiting confirmation)
• This will be billed as North Devon’s First Action Week (there’ll be more…)
• NDC will set up a Facebook page & Twitter account (N Devon Climate Action, not just for the week)
• NDC will link in to the Journal campaign to get people taking action, and will contact the Gazette.
• NDC posts through the week will relate to the following themes : Biodiversity (Life on the verge/wildflower meadows); Circular Economy (including consumerism); Waste & Recycling; Energy Saving; Transport

Initial suggestions for drop-ins, workshops etc during the week in Barnstaple and parishes across N Devon:

• Parks & Gardens team to hold community meadow-planting
• Seed swaps, making seed bombs
• Talks (various topics)
• Films (e.g. Biosphere’s Journey to the Sea)
• Neighbourhood Planning (energy efficient housing, climate change mitigation)
• Waste & Recycling (ref N Devon Show)
• Partner offerings, e.g. 361 Home Energy Assessment offering, Biosphere Pledges for Nature, Plastic-free information/workshops
Suggested kick-off on Sunday 22nd March with junior marching band, and youngsters with placards, marching from the Market Square to the Pannier Market; stalls in Pannier Market from partner organisations and local food stalls; a speech or two; placards left against Pannier Market walls for the duration of the action week.

The primary purpose of the week is to engage the wider community, to inform, educate and inspire them to action. NDC will also be contacting schools and colleges in N Devon.



We welcome Sue Bond as our new manager and wish her all the very best in her new role.

It is with sadness but heartfelt thanks that we acknowledge the retirement of Peter Knowles and David Maidment from the committee.  Peter was part of the group who founded the Community Shop back in 2012 and has been the Secretary since then.  His commitment has been outstanding.  Sara Hodsman has taken over this role however Peter will remain our legal adviser.

David has also been a member for many years and been our stock take hero!  He has stepped down as Vice Chair but remains a volunteer.  Ian Rothwell has filled the Vice Chair position.

Our new committee members are Alison Worth, Avice Yeo, Sara Hodsman-Secretary, Michele Isaac-Fundraiser and Sue Bond-Manager.

More volunteers are needed.  There can’t be too many so please help if you can.

25th January is Chinese New Year (Year of the Rat)
We have various items in stock to help make a Chinese meal to celebrate the day.

We are holding a raffle to win a Valentines Hamper!!
Sunday Lunch at the Crown, Chocolates, Prosecco + more.
Get your tickets from the shop.
The draw will take place on 12th February.

We are trying out some new products that are Gluten Free.

We would like to ask frequent card payers to use/open an account at the shop and pay it off before the end of each month.  Application forms available in the shop (terms apply).  This could save us an average of 40p per card transaction.

Now stocking Wine from £5.75 per bottle.

Recipe of the Month
Herby Crème Fraiche Salmon with Grilled Avocado. Get your copy from the shop or from our Facebook page.

We thank you for your continued support and look forward to your next visit. From your West Down Community Shop.

Community Notices

We live in a lovely village and it is in everyone’s interest to keep it that way, so it is important that we all do our bit.

Mobile Library – on the Square.  Thursday 30th January 2020 at 10.50am – 11.20am.  It is free to join and you can have as many books as you like with no overdue fees.  If they don’t have the particular books you want you can order them online and have them delivered to the village on the mobile unit.

This service is under threat of closure. Please use it or we WILL lose it.

Bags2School – Let us have your old clothes and put them to good use.  Please bring your unwanted clothes in bin bags to the school gate at 9am on Tuesday 10th March 2020.

Quiz and Curry – hosted by West Down Community Shop on 21st March 2020 in the Parish Hall at 7pm.

Big Breakfast – hosted by West Down School.  At the parish Hall on Sunday 5th April 2020 9-12am.

Cream Tea – hosted by West down School.  At the Parish Hall on Sunday 26th July 2020.

Bus to Barnstaple – leaves the village at 10:00am (Not on Tuesdays or Sundays) from the square and returns from Stand L at Barnstaple Bus Station at 13:50pm, arriving back in the village at 14:27pm.

West Down Toddler Group – We meet every Tuesday morning at 11am, in the Iron Room during term time.  You are welcome to join us.  The cost is £1.50 plus 50p per extra child.  For further info contact Wendy Ravenscroft on 01271 865413.

Bell Ringers – St Calixtus Church Campanologists are calling.  Would you be interested in learning how to ring the Church Bells and be part of the West Down award-winning team?  The group usually practice around 7pm on Friday Evenings.  Please call Margaret for further information on 01271 816393.

Lost Property – from around the village is often handed into the shop.  Please check if any of it is yours!!

High Chairs – available to rent for just the cost of a donation to the Community Shop or the Parish Hall.  Good quality and easy to clean.  Great for holiday lets.  Please enquire in the shop.

The Post Office – your local cash point – at the Parish Hall, Mondays 1.15pm to 4.15pm, Wednesdays 9.15am to 12.15pm & Fridays 9.15am to 12.15pm.  Their system is now connected via a land line ensuring a reliable service.  It has the same services as a regular Post Office including parcels, banking and cash withdrawal from most banks, Car Tax and Birthday Gift Cards with a value of your choice usable at most stores.  Currency available to order (order Friday/Monday collect on Wednesday; order Wednesday collect Friday).

Dates for your Diary 2020
30th January Mobile Library (details above)
10th March – Bags to School (details above)
21st March – Quiz and Curry (details above)
5th April – Big Breakfast (details to follow)
26th July – Cream Tea (details to follow)



Next Meeting at the Parish Hall on Wednesday 8th January 2020 at 7.30pm




Martin Rich – Devon Communities Together, opened the meeting by explaining Emergency Planning, as follows:

• Devon Resilience Board comprises Councils and emergency services and came about as a result of the Civil Contingency Act in order to ensure efficient responses to emergencies such as severe weather events, (floods, snow etc) terrorism and disasters such as foot and mouth disease. Systems have been put in place to plan and co-ordinate responses and this has included encouraging the formation of local resilience groups which have a variety of skills and resources.
• A template has been constructed which acts as a local plan and is put on the county data base. This standard format allows the emergency services responder to access all the relevant information and engage with local teams. Personal information is redacted and is only available to selected personnel. The data base also helps to identify communities at risk.
• This template includes a community risk assessment, and indicates the resources and skills that are available. It is put together by a response team comprising members from various sectors of the community and details convenient areas to act as a base and/or refuge centre. The response to an emergency could be simply to alleviate the situation, to evacuate from a dangerous situation, or to facilitate rescue, by removing snow etc.
• The importance of local awareness was stressed and having an action plan to follow in the event of issues such as prolonged loss of power; heavy snow fall, flood, loss of utilities.
• Personal action plans are also important, such as individuals having adequate medical supplies when hazardous events are forecast; knowing the whereabouts of stop cocks etc., having basic supplies to sustain during extreme weather events etc. Emergency services will look for ‘ICE’ details – ‘In Case of Emergency’ – comprising contact details of near relatives; medication needs; information on pets. It is suggested that these can be on a mobile phone, or in a ‘message bottle’ to be kept in the fridge.

Martin explained that there is help and some funding available for setting up such plans, including workshops, advice and support groups and a Resilience Forum which meets twice a year and has guest speakers.
It is necessary to update the plan once a year and have a contact system that affords discreet assistance to vulnerable members of the community.
It was felt that climate change could mean that more extreme weather events could be experienced and that outside assistance would not necessarily be available.

There was a general discussion which covered topics such as the inclusion of Mullacott Industrial estate and flood risks. The question of insurance was raised and it was explained that training was given and volunteers acting in good faith would not be prosecuted for any action taken.

Further consideration will be given to the formation of a response team.


Are you interested in becoming a bellringer?  West Down has a long tradition of campanology and really needs new bellringers.  Age, gender, immaterial so please get in touch.  Leave your contact details at the Community Shop.


At: Parish Hall
On: Friday 11th October 2019
Starting at 7.30 p.m.


1. Apologies
2. Open Meeting – Public Speaking
3. Planning Application:
a. 70366 Willingcott Valley Holiday Village
Bradwell Road, Woolacombe. EX34 7HN

The public and press are cordially invited to be present.

Next meeting at the Parish Hall on Wednesday 2nd October 2019 – 7.30pm
The public and press are cordially invited to be present.

For an agenda of this meeting please click here



From MONDAY 2 SEPTEMBER 2019 for a maximum of 5 days
Anticipated Finish WEDNESDAY 4 SEPTEMBER 2019
No person shall cause or permit any vehicle to proceed or wait on the sections of Affected Roads.
This temporary restriction is considered necessary to enable – DEVON HIGHWAYS – PATCHING WORKS
For additional information contact: SKANSKA UK Telephone: 0330 105 2807
Meg Booth Chief Officer of Highways, Infrastructure Development & Waste Devon Highways Devon County Council Lucombe House County Hall Exeter EX2 4QD

Ref:  TTRO1931519 – click here for additional information.

Temporary Traffic Order – Road from The Long House to Pullands House, West Down (TTRO1931444)





NOTICE is hereby given that Devon County Council has made the above titled order.

From MONDAY 4 NOVEMBER 2019 for a maximum of 18 months

Anticipated Finish FRIDAY 15 NOVEMBER 2019

No person shall cause or permit any vehicle to proceed or wait on the sections of Affected Roads.



This temporary restriction is considered necessary to enable – RENEWAL OF SEWER PIPE

For additional information contact: KIER MG LTD Telephone: 0344 346 2020

Dated: MONDAY 28 OCTOBER 2019

Meg Booth Chief Officer of Highways, Infrastructure Development & Waste Devon Highways Devon County Council Lucombe House County Hall Exeter EX2 4QD

Big Breakfast

Many thanks to everybody who supported the Parish Hall Big Breakfast on Sunday 28th August which raised £519.32.  A special thank you to Mark for all his hard work in the kitchen along with all the other people who helped staging this successful event.

Parish Council – Ash dieback

Ash die-back is becoming increasingly prevalent and landowners are reminded that it is their responsibility to ensure public safety. Dead or diseased trees need to be removed or made safe where they could fall across roads or pathways. Advice and information can be found on


Results of West Down Parish Hall Treasure Hunt held Sunday 23rd June 2019

10 teams braved the rain to take part in the fund raising event.

Congratulations to Martin, Sarah and Andy who managed to answer all 28 questions correctly – please click below for full results.

Results Treasure Hunt – P Hall 23.6.2019



This will be the 7th Annual Members Meeting of West Down Community Shop Limited (WDCSL), which is the registered society that runs the village community shop.

The business to be dealt with at the Meeting will include—

  • Presentation of the Annual Accounts for WDCSL’s financial year that ended on 31st December 2018
  • Presentation of various reports by WDCSL’s Management Committee, including plans for the current and future years
  • Deciding whether to dispense with full professional audit of Annual Accounts
  • Election of members to the Management Committee.

Afterwards there will be an opportunity for a general discussion on matters relating to the shop.

You are a member of WDCSL if you own at least one WDCSL share.  West Down residents who are not members are also invited to come to the meeting, but only members will be able to vote.  If anyone would like to become a member, please request a prospectus from Peter Knowles, WDCSL’s Secretary.  Shares cost £1 each.

Anyone who would like to stand for election to the Management Committee, which oversees the running of the shop, should let Peter Knowles know no later than 17th June.  The Committee needs to have between 4 and 12 members.

Finally, it would be very helpful if anyone intending to come to the meeting could, if possible, let Peter know ahead of the meeting so that there is an opportunity to check that there will be adequate seating for those attending.  We need a lot of members to attend in order that the meeting can proceed.

Peter can be contacted via the shop or its email address (

West Down Community Shop Limited is a registered society under the Co-operative and Community Benefit Societies Act 2014
Registered in England No. 31609R

West Down Parish Council wishes to appoint a Parish Clerk/Responsible Finance Officer to work 18 hours a month.  The Clerk will work from home but will be required attend 12 meetings a year and other meetings as necessary.  The pay will be within the NJC pay scale SCP15-22, £9.77 – £11.77 per hour, depending on qualifications and experience.  The applicant should possess good administrative; financial; computing and communication skills.  Experience of Local Government and Parish Council work would be an advantage.

Applicants should email a CV and also a supporting letter explaining their ability to meet the requirements of the post to

Closing date for applications is Monday 20th May 2019.

Air Ambulance

West Down has become one of the latest villages to provide a safe landing space for the North Devon Air Ambulance.  Having already experienced the need for casualties to be evacuation using the Air Ambulance, the community came together to ensure that the helicopter could land safely by day and night.

The success of this initiative is a real tribute to the community spirit that exists, with all sections of the community coming together to provide the necessary facilities.

The Trustees of the West Down Village Green Field Association offered the landing site and the Parish Council obtained the necessary planning permission.  Fund raising for the lighting mast was aided by County and District Councillors.  West Down Women’s Institute held a cream tea which raised a substantial amount as well as being a most enjoyable event.  A grateful parishioner, who benefitted from the services of the air ambulance, was among the donors.  A local resident is providing the electricity for the mast and the air ambulance has already completed a test run.

The general Feeling is a hope that it will not be necessary to use the landing site, but it is reassuring for villages in remote locations to know that they are accessible and that aid is within easy reach.

 West Down Amateur Productions

The management committee are delighted to announce that the following donations have been given from the proceeds of Cinderella

West Down Parish Hall – with thanks for use of hall for rehearsals and performances – £800

West Down Community Shop – with thanks for selling tickets …and sourcing Covent Garden ballerinas! – £400

West Down Church – with thanks for being able to use the Iron Room if/as/when needed – £200

Total £1,400

Thanks to everyone who support the Panto

West Down Parish Council

January 2019
County Councillors report

A361 roadworks North Devon Link Road

Major resurfacing work will resume on the A361 North Devon Link Road near Tiverton early in the New Year.

Work on the current phase of the £5 million project ended on Thursday 20th December and all lane closures were removed from the A361 for the Christmas and New Year holidays.

When the scheme resumes on Monday 7 January, the outside lanes of both the eastbound and westbound carriageways will be closed, from east of Gornhay Cross to west of Sampford Peverell, for one week.

There will also be overnight closures from 7pm until 7am each evening during this first week. Overnight on Monday 7 and Tuesday 8 January, the westbound carriageway will be completely closed, between east of Gornhay Cross to Junction 27 of the M5. Then on the evenings of Wednesday 9, Thursday 10 and Friday 11 January the eastbound carriage way will be closed from east of Gornhay Cross to west of Sampford Peverell. On the night of Saturday 12 January, the eastbound carriageway will be closed until 1am, before the closure is switched to the westbound carriageway until 7am. Signed diversions will be in place during all night-time closures.

From Monday 14 January to Sunday 3 February, a contraflow will be in place from east of Gornhay Cross to west of Sampford Peverell while work is carried out on the westbound carriageway.

From Monday 4 February to Sunday 24 February the contraflow will swap to the other carriageway while work is carried out on the eastbound side between west of Sampford Peverell and east of Gornhay Cross.

Andrea Davis
County Councillor Combe Martin Rural

West Down Parish Council

West Down Parish Council wish to make everyone aware that we have a fully operational AED in the village.  This is a Zoll machine and it is sited in the porch at the West Down Community Shop.  It is stored in a plastic box with an alarm on it, but there is no code to access the box and the alarm is for noise purpose only.


This machine is simple to operate and once open you follow the instructions provided by the machine – with good quality CPR the best possible care is provided to a casualty and chances of survival in a life threatening situation are raised considerably.

If anyone would like further information regarding the machine or you wanted to consider some training, please do not hesitate to contact:

Sue Ayre – 07980 182317


War Memorial Ceremony at St Calixtus Church

Once again the children from Oak Class, West Down School joined West Down’s Women’s Institute for a ceremony at the War Memorial at St. Calixtus Church. The Reverend Stephen Painter officiated and the ‘silence’ was marked by the school bell. This is the same bell that would have called to the men and boys on the memorial when they went to the school. Roy Drew (ex RAF) spoke the lines of remembrance at the beginning and end of the ‘silence’. The children then took the poppies knitted by the WI and placed them on the graves and memorials of the fallen and of the veterans who returned. The church gates were decorated with more poppies knitted by the WI.



You will be pleased to know that the West Down WI raised £600 at their Cream Tea on Sunday 29th July to help raise funds for the Air Ambulance Landing Lights that will be located in the Community Field.

Many thanks to all our members who donated goodies and their valuable time (no expenses claimed).

Many thanks to Tony of the Pantry Bakery in Ilfracombe who donated 100 scones.

This event was a resounding success and as such a very special thank you to everyone who came along to support the occasion and to those who gave extra donations.

Catherine Williams
President West Down WI

Volunteers needed for West Down Community Shop

The West Down Community Shop is calling for Volunteers to work Weekdays and Weekends.

All we ask from you is that you can commit a couple of hours a week and enjoy serving customers.

The West Down Community Shop is looking for enthusiastic people to help us create a great atmosphere where people want to come to shop.

If you are interested in becoming a volunteer contact us on:

T:        01271 864264



Village Forum

A Village Forum Meeting was held on 12th December, 2017, attended by representatives from the following organisations.

Parish Council

Community Shop

Gardening Club

St Calixtus Church

West Down Green Field Association

West Down Parish Hall Management Committee.

Women’s Institute

They reported as follows:-

Parish Council – Thanked Fay Hookway for retrieving the tiles that had fallen off the West Down Village sign at Dean Cross and Keith Oades and Roy Drew for replacing them.

It was noted that a representative from Devon Air Ambulance had attended the last meeting and had given positive assurances about the viability of using the Green Field as a night landing space with a lighting mast which would be supplied with power by a resident. Money would need to be raised to cover this. It would be just over £3,000, but District Councillor Andrea Davies has already promised to donate £1,000 of this.

Community Shop – had experienced a couple of poor months, but was breaking even. Volunteers for a variety of jobs, long and short term, are always needed. Organisations were reminded that the defibrillator is situated in the shop porch and training in its use has been given to many villagers.

Gardening Club – is doing very well with 79 members, some of whom have come from Braunton. It has an interesting programme of speakers with the additional room at the Parish Hall providing the necessary extra space. The screen and projector are proving to be very useful. Forthcoming speakers include Andy McIndoe of Chelsea Flower show fame coming in February and Chris Beardshaw later in the year. New members are always welcome and guests can attend for two meetings before joining. As well as a varied and interesting programme the members enjoy a number of outings and a holiday. Committee members are needed and the web page on the West Down website needs to be updated.

Green Field is currently holding a Christmas raffle and dates for events will be circulated. The children’s play area had been completed and a seesaw is to be installed shortly. It was noted that the entrance is very muddy due to recent bad weather and this will be discussed at the next committee meeting. Provision for the Air Ambulance will also be on the agenda. In the immediate future they are just raising funds for maintenance of the existing facilities.

Parish Hall Phase 1 of the redevelopment of the hall has been completed and other organisations reported that the extra room was very useful. The redevelopment had come in under budget and the current income is able to cover the basics costs of running the hall. It is hoped that the second phase will begin in June, this will involve the removal of the stage which will be replaced by a movable stage to be kept in the store room. While this is being done, the hall will be out of use for 2 weeks. It was felt that the trollies used to move chairs and tables were a real help. Two long serving members of the committee had retired, Eric Nott, who began working for hall by fund raising to help build the hall and Pete McGahran who, as well as being a committee member has been the booking clerk. Future events are:-

27 January annual quiz night

17 February Dave Edgecombe – fascinating talk illustrated with old and new photos of the North Devon coast.

3 March Rick Tucker – the popular local musician.

West Down Women’s Institute has over 30 members, but over 50% of the members come from outside the village, which means that it is not easy to ask them to do things for the village. However, they usually support all the initiatives and will continue to help when needed. Meetings are now held in the afternoons and although this could make it difficult for younger members to join, the support really comes from the older generation, so their interests have to come first. They have had joint ventures with the school, notably the recent remembrance ceremony when the children of Oak Class placed the poppies made by the WI on the graves and memorials of those who served in both world wars. The WI is offering to do a coffee morning to help raise funds for the Air Ambulance. The West Down WI is celebrating its 70th year in 2018 and the time capsule, which is currently in safe keeping will be opened. Concern was expressed about the Coronation Tree and its metal fence and this will be checked. The meeting to be held on the 8th November 2018 will be celebrating the 1918 Armistice and all are welcome.

St Calixtus Church is currently without a vicar and has been combined with a number of other local churches. Appreciation was expressed for the illuminated star currently on display and details of the carol service were given. It is hoped that attendance at the church will improve as it is an important part of the village. It was noted that the Iron Room will be available when the Parish Hall is out of action.

West Down School was unable to attend, but had recently hosted an excellent Christmas Dinner for older residents and supporters. The school is happy to support local issues and currently circulates the Community Shop Newsletter to all parents. The school also offers the use of its premises when needed.

Mobile Library – It was noted that this service will be withdrawn if it is not supported. Details of its timetable can be found on the West Down website.

Outreach Post Office – This service has been resumed after the Post Office had technical problems. Again, this service will be withdrawn if there is not sufficient support.

West Down Website This supports all local organisations and is happy to publish minutes of meetings, news and forthcoming events.

Fund Raising – It was suggested that Tesco provides funds for local causes, but it was felt that the application process was too complex.


The National Bee Unit has confirmed a sighting of the Asian hornet at an apiary near Woolacombe in Devon. The Asian hornet is smaller than the UK’s native hornet but poses the risk of destroying honey bee colonies. For more information please read the attached guidance notes.

West Down Parish Hall Clean Up and Improvement Works

As you are probably aware, the Parish Hall Committee are in the process of planning building works to improve and up-date the Hall.  Details will be available to view on the West Down website in due course.

We spent a morning cleaning up and removing unwanted items (rather a lot) from the main storage room a couple of weeks ago and Saturday (7th January) spent the morning removing items from under the stage.

Meanwhile, we had a visit from one of the 3 builders who have expressed an interest in the proposed works.

We are hoping for a late Spring completion and plan a “Grand Opening” combined with the celebrations of the 60th Anniversary of the Hall.

Any suggestions/ideas for inclusion in this momentous occasion would be most welcomed.

As is the nature of these types of plans, all works will be subject to the continuing Fund Raising and your support is much appreciated.

Parish Council Clean Up

Once again the Parish Council is going around the village and doing some clearing up.


This has included picking up litter, but Councillor Sue Ayre has really gone beyond the call of duty by tackling the litter bin by Pulland Bridge.  Sadly, this has been used to deposit bags of dog excrement, even though there is a bin specifically for these just 50 yards away on the ‘triangle’.


Sue removed 204 such bags from in and around the bin, cleaned the bin and put in a new bag.  She has put up a notice reminding people that the bin is for litter and not dog excrement and it is hoped that this will do the trick as we cannot expect the staff who empty the litter bin to empty it when it contains waste of this nature.


We live in a lovely village and it is in everyone’s interest to keep it that way so it is important that we all do our bit.


Dog Fouling2

We are well aware that this notice does not apply to the majority of dog walkers – but unfortunately the minority are spoiling it for the majority.