Ipsden Village website, Ipsden Parish Council website Ipsden Village website Notices
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The census is coming on Sunday 21 March 2021.

By taking part, you can help to inform decisions on services that shape your community, such as healthcare, education and transport.

It’s important that you fill in your census questionnaire online. It’s easy to take part, but if you need a little extra help there are a wide range of support services.

There’s language support and accessible census guidance. You can also get help from census staff in the contact centre over phone, in a web chat or on social media.

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) will send you a letter in the post with an access code and instructions. You can fill your census questionnaire in online as soon as you get yours.

If your household circumstances change on Census Day, you can let the ONS know.

Remember, if you, or anyone you know, needs help, there’s plenty available.

For more information, visit
www.census.gov.uk
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Ridgeway visitors urged not to damage historic route
 
Read the story on the Oxfordshire County Council website here or below:
 
Visitors to the Ridgeway National Trail in the south of Oxfordshire are being urged not to drive or park where they are not allowed, following an increase in reports of damage to the ancient trackway.
 
An increase in visitor numbers is expected over the Christmas holiday period at the historic trail, as families head for the popular walking route. It comes at a time when the trail is already busier than ever and the surface is vulnerable to damage because of the wet conditions.
 
Oxfordshire County Council’s Ridgeway Officer, Sarah Wright, said: “We want to raise awareness of how to care for the trail. With so many visitors, it’s even more important that everyone uses the trail safely and responsibly.
 
“Just one car driving over wet ground can create a long stretch of wheel ruts that costs tens of thousands of pounds to repair and it is especially galling when the driver shouldn’t have been driving along there in the first place. With the route being so historic, visitors could unwittingly damage irreplaceable archaeology when they park on verges.”
 
There has been a rise in reports of people riding motorcycles and driving 4x4s along The Ridgeway National Trail. Some relate to criminal activities, while others concern visitors parking on verges when parking areas are full.
 
It is an offence to drive on The Ridgeway where there are no public rights to do so and the landowner’s permission has not been given. During the winter, the only part of The Ridgeway National Trail open to the public to drive vehicles is the three-mile Byway section in the Swindon borough area, from Fox Hill to the county boundary near Bishopstone.
 
There is no public right to drive on the trail where it follows a public footpath, bridleway, or restricted byway. Public rights to drive cars or motorcycles apply only to routes signed as ‘Byways Open to All Traffic’ and vehicles must be road legal. Drivers should always check on-site signage before proceeding.
 
In Oxfordshire, there are no Byway stretches along The Ridgeway, so the public should not be driving on it at all.
 
Wantage Neighbourhood and Wildlife Officer PC Darren James, said: “As a vehicle owner, it is your responsibility to check for the relevant signage to be sure access is lawful.
 
“We continue to patrol The Ridgeway and work with our partners in local authorities to tackle those who choose to disregard the laws that are in place to protect our wildlife and open spaces.
 
“Your information can help us to investigate crimes of this nature. Therefore, if you suspect that a crime has taken place, you can report it to police online or by calling the non-emergency number, 101. If an incident is in progress, or there is an immediate threat to life, you should call 999.”
 
The police carry out patrols on The Ridgeway and have powers to confiscate vehicles involved in illegal activities. Where possible, the Ridgeway officers provide information to the police to help them tackle offenders.
 
The Ridgeway’s website gives details about what activities are possible where, including an interactive map. Visit www.nationaltrail.co.uk/ridgeway/information
 
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New Housing grants policy makes it easier for those in need of help with their homes

South Oxfordshire and Vale of White Horse district councils have made it easier for people with disabilities or who are vulnerable to receive housing assistance grants and loans to help make their homes safer and more comfortable.
 
While the councils have always provided a grants and loans service for vulnerable people to help their homes better suit their needs, the new Housing Assistance Grants and Loans policy introduced by the councils this month has extended what’s on offer.
 
The maximum grant available has increased from £30,000 to £50,000 and a grant is also now available for people living with dementia. In addition, the system is to be streamlined with new technology aiming to improve the service and reduce the waiting times for work to be carried out.
 
The new policy aims to:
 
  • support more disabled residents to live independently by improving access and movement around their homes
  • reduce hospital admissions and enable early hospital discharges
  • reduce the need for residential care by allowing people with disabilities to live independently in their own homes
  • reduce fuel poverty and the effects of living in cold homes
  • support tailored home adaptations for those who need them including those suffering with dementia
 
To apply for a Disabled Facilities Grant, the first step is to contact an Occupational Therapist to see if someone is eligible. For more information on applying for grants and loans please see our  website pages (South) and (Vale)
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The Earth Trust

What We Do
Our Mission is to give people access to and experience of the environment through the natural green spaces we manage and together understand what we can do to care for the planet.

We deliver our strategy through these six work programmes:

Food & Farming
Future Forests
Water & Wetlands
Transformational Learning
Earth Trust and a gateway to accessible, natural green spaces
Championing Green Spaces

Contact us at: https://earthtrust.org.uk

Charity Reg. No. 1095057
Little Wittenham, Abingdon, Oxfordshire, OX14 4QZ
Tel: 01865 407792

Do you know how to keep your children safe online?

During lockdown, many of us have turned to the internet to stay in touch, which goes for children as well as adults. Sadly, some criminals are using these extraordinary circumstances as a way to exploit and target young people when they are online.

Since the government restrictions were introduced Thames Valley Police have seen an increase in reports of online sexual abuse involving children and are urging parents to take this opportunity to have honest conversations about online safety with their children and to review privacy settings on the apps and social networks that they are using.

Online sexual abuse is any type of sexual abuse that happens on the web, whether through social networks, online gaming or using mobile phones. In some cases this involves children being groomed or exploited by an adult.

Any child or young person that uses the internet or has a smartphone could be a victim of online sexual abuse and they can be at risk from people they know, as well as from strangers. Those they are speaking to online may not be who they say they are.
The signs of online sexual abuse can be hard to spot and in these unprecedented times it is possible that these changes in behaviour may be mistakenly attributed to the change of circumstance or routine in which we all find ourselves.

These signs include; hiding computer screens or taking phone calls away from others, being secretive about what they’re doing and who they’re talking to, sudden personality changes or mood swings, engaging less with family and their usual friends and referring to a ‘new friend’ but offering limited information about them.

If you are concerned for the safety of a child, call Thames Valley Police on 101, or the NSPCC helpline on
0808 800 5000.
To support parents during COVID-19, the National Crime Agency’s Child Exploitation and Online Protection division are producing fortnightly activity packs to help discuss staying safe online with your children. These age-appropriate resources, containing two 15-minute activities for each age group, can be found at
www.thinkuknow.co.uk

Thames Valley Police continues to intercept and bring to justice those who attempt to exploit children online and encourage anyone who is concerned about the sexual behaviour of an adult or a child, to call
101 or the Stop it Now helpline on 0808 1000 900.

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A4074 Update


Villagers will have seen the new white gates and extra solar warning sign that Oxfordshire County Council (OCC) have installed on the Ipsden stretch of the A4074.

Ipsden Parish Council (IPC) have no jurisdiction or powers on A road matters, but have been lobbying OCC on villagers behalf for many years to improve the dangerous conditions at the two junctions. The minutes detailing these efforts, and showing the results, have been continuously published for comments over this period, but for those who have not read the minutes over the years, the situation is summarized below.

The obvious requests were to have a speed restriction, double white lines to prevent overtaking, and warning signs. That is what IPC fought for, but after many site meetings and much correspondence, OCC were unable to offer a speed restriction and Thames Valley Police vetoed double white lines.

OCC did however offer white gates with “Please drive carefully” and a further vehicle activated speed warning sign. The proviso was that IPC had to raise funds to pay for the £9,900 (approx) that these installations would cost because Government cuts meant that OCC did not have the funds.

IPC therefore commenced applications for grant funding. After four years, grants from SODC, OCC, our district councillor, and £2781 from our own reserves over the period, the money was raised. Thanks to all parties for their valuable help in this process, but special thanks are due to our County Councillor Mark Gray for his contributions and efforts, and to our clerk, Amanda McCrea, for her endless efforts, and for tolerating the system’s obfuscation.

A small final twist occurred with the signs on the southbound gates. They are actually in Crowmarsh Parish! The border with Ipsden Parish does not start until the Church Lane turn which is obviously too late to place a warning. OCC was therefore obliged to sign as “Rural Community”. Not ideal, but better than nothing. Rules are rules! Happily, the northbound gates are signed “Ipsden”.

OCC will re-paint the road “SLOW” signs and white lines shortly to finalise the job. The red center strips are also due for renewal, but there is no date for that yet.

What IPC and the village wanted is not exactly what was possible, but hopefully there will be an improvement to all of our nerves in using these unpleasantly dangerous junctions. IPC will continue to seek further improvements from OCC over the years.


Ipsden Parish Council

OXFORDSHIRE FIRE & RESCUE


Oxfordshire Fire & Rescue are now using what3words. This means if you need to contact the police and are having trouble describing where you are, you can use the app to tell them your exact location.


what3words has labelled every 3m x 3m square in the world with an address made of three random words from the dictionary. For example, the 3 word address of Nelson's Column in Trafalgar Square is ///this.fantastic.notes


All you need to do is download the free what3words app. You’ll be able to see and share the 3 word address of your current location and also find out the 3 word address of your home (by typing in your address and selecting the square containing your front door).


If you’re renting your property on Airbnb or any other accommodation sites, you can also use it to make sure guests don’t get lost by just sending them the 3 word address of the front door/property entrance (especially if your postcode goes to the wrong place!).


Visit 
what3words.com or download the app to find out more.

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Councils are asking drivers to ‘Turn it off’ if they are stopped for a minute or more

Just one minute of sitting with your car engine running and the vehicle not moving produces the equivalent of 150 balloons of harmful pollutants into the air.
This is why South Oxfordshire and Vale of White Horse district councils have launched a joint campaign to help improve air quality across southern Oxfordshire.
The campaign called ‘Turn it Off’  -
www.southandvale.gov.uk/turnitoff - which has been endorsed by Public Health England - is aimed at drivers who leave their engines ‘idling’ - still running even when the vehicle is not moving. This often happens when a vehicle is parked but the driver is still inside, waiting for someone outside a school or a shop.
The councils will be promoting the campaign on Clean Air Day Thursday June 20 at a stall at Henley Market in the morning and at Old Station Yard, next to Stert St, in Abingdon in the afternoon. These will be followed by more awareness events across both districts.

Air pollution has been identified by a number of organisations including the World Health Organisation, United Nations and the Royal College of Physicians as the biggest environmental risk to health. A recent
report from Public Health England estimated that within the UK, air pollution is linked to up to 36,000 deaths each year. Older people and children are most sensitive to air pollutants.
Keeping the engine running while parked contributes to an increase of air pollutant levels. Schools, traffic lights and bus stops are most likely locations for idling.
The councils’ new campaign ‘Turn it off’ aims to educate people about air pollution and the links to engine idling and promoting cleaner ways to drive.
  • Switch off when the car is likely to be stopped for more than 1 minute
  • 1 minute of idling produces twice as many emissions as a moving vehicle
  • 1 minute of idling produces the equivalent of 150 balloons of harmful pollutants
  • Excessive idling is a waste of fuel (and money)
  • People inside cars are exposed to high levels of air pollution, with children especially at risk of harmful effects
Vale of White Horse District Council cabinet member for Environmental and technical services Cllr Jenny Hannaby said: “Vehicles produce pollution and idling produces unnecessary air pollution and wastes fuel. We invite people to join our campaign and do something personally to help improve air quality in our area.”
 
South Oxfordshire District Council cabinet member for housing and environment Cllr David Rouane said: “The message is simple - if you are in your car and stop for a minute or more then you should turn off your engine for cleaner air.”
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The refurbishment work on the telephone kiosk next to the village shop has been completed. It now looks splendid and is being used for the display of local information. Local businesses and residents are encouraged to make use of this facility.
Highways Maintenance Briefing - from OCC

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Residents in southern Oxfordshire concerned about keeping warm and managing their energy bills are being encouraged to contact an advice service for help.
 
The Better Housing Better Health (BHBH) service, funded by South Oxfordshire and Vale of White Horse District Councils alongside the county’s other district councils and Oxfordshire County Council, helps people who are vulnerable to the effects of living in cold homes over the winter period.
 
The advice service offers free, impartial advice on staying warm and managing energy bills. Residents can find out if they qualify for a grant to install energy saving improvements to their homes or a free home energy visit to look at ways to save energy to bring their bills down.
 
The service is run by the Affordable Warmth Network, which all local councils are part of.  It offers direct referrals to a growing network of support organisations, including the fire service, falls prevention service and befriending and advice services.  All of which aims to ease the pressure on other health services during the winter months. 
 
If you or someone you know is struggling to keep warm and well this winter call the free BHBH hotline on 0800 107 0044 or visit the website www.bhbh.org.uk.
South Central Ambulance Charity (SCAC)
SCAC has launched a campaign to raise £1m by Christmas 2019. Their service covers Ipsden and surrounding villages. Our lives depend on SCAC in emergencies, so please consider supporting this worthy charity.
Click here for SCAC's poster
Click here for SCAC's website giving further information
Southern Electric Priority Services offers support for the seriously ill or vulnerable during a power cut.
Click here to view the 8 page leaflet
Click here to register for the scheme on-line or Telephone SSE Priority Services on - 0800 294 3259
Village Group Email - Please subscribe
The Parish Council has put together a village group email in order to notify parishioners of County, District and Parish forums, notices and consultations that may be of interest. Emails will be sent out by "blind copy" in order to ensure data protection, i.e. email addresses and names will not be seen by others, they will be known to and held by the Parish Clerk only.

To sign up, all you need to do is email
ipsdenpc@gmail.com stating Village Group Email in the subject line.
RAF Benson Flying Activity
Following last year's meeting and update about flying at Benson Airfield, the RAF now kindly make available all activity on a daily and weekly basis.
Click here for the section of the RAF Benson website which details the weekly flying program, as well as the planned first take off and last landing times.
Neighbourhood Watch
Steve English is the village's Neighbourhood Watch Co-ordinator. He has a wealth of experience from the Police Force and excellent contacts with the local Police.

Any resident concerned about criminal activity should click on the link below to see the latest information.

Click here for the Ipsden Watch blog
Ipsden Village website Notices