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From the Parish Council Chairman - June 2023

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As I write this message we are heading into a third May Bank Holiday, amazing weather and the prospect of a wonderful summer ahead.

Successful village events including the Fete, the Coronation Beacon, the Cuddesdon Ball (back after 13 years) and the Celebration of JP Drinks have all shown our community at its best.

However, I have spent much of May worrying about the new Parish Council ever since I saw that only 4 people had stood for election for the 7 positions, in a Parish of almost 500. If you read the Newsletter regularly, you’ll have seen that our Parish Clerk, Mike Mount, and I were encouraging you to put your hand up, get your papers into the SODC at Abingdon and allow us to have an election. Very sadly this didn’t happen and the uncontested newly-elected councillors were given the uneviable task of co-opting 3 more at our very first meeting.

Though I’ve fielded some criticism over the last couple of weeks, we do have a really good team on the PC. We have 5 Cuddesdon Councillors representing the High Street, Parkside and the farming community and two from Denton. It is my personal hope that we also achieve representation from the new Dove House development, Chippinghurst and most obviously women back on the PC in the future. But this isn’t to diminish the hard work and free time that all your Councillors have given to our community and will continue to offer as they serve over the next term.

It's likely there will be vacancies on the PC, whether in a week’s time or a year or two and so I’m incredibly grateful that there is renewed interest in joining the team.

Please join us at any or all PC meetings, as input from the community is very valuable. Everybody gets the chance to speak and help shape our parish. We meet on the first Tuesday of the month and the agenda is always on the Parish Notice Board in good time. 

Away from the PC, so many parishioners do amazing work on other important community bodies like the PCC and Village Hall Committee to name just two.

But I’d like to finish by thanking Nicko King and everyone who has begun work trying to save The Bat & Ball? We have amazing expertise and enthusiasm on Nicko’s working group – Nicola, Fiona, Dee, Amy, Ron, Mike, Jon, Peter, and Richard, to name a few. A lot of skill and hard work (and a little luck) will be required to save our pub - or as Nicola calls it our ‘third space’. 

It’s well worth a try as that’s exactly what it is and I encourage everyone to fill in the survey either online or on paper. We need a space to meet and be a community that’s neither home nor work. The village hall cannot fulfil this need alone without the pub but the proximity of the two makes them very effective bedfellows. The team are beginning to create a vision for a thriving village with the pub at its heart again, so please help them.