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You'll never believe what the vicar said!

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West Mercia Police

Would you like to help keep your community safe, get some exercise, and meet new people?

We are looking for volunteers to join our new StreetWatch scheme!

As a Streetwatch Volunteer, you will walk your local streets in groups and provide reassurance and engagement with local issues that matter most. While you will have no police powers, you will work directly with local policing teams to report any issues noticed during your walks.

Becoming a StreetWatch Volunteer is a fantastic way to help keep your community safe, to meet new people in your community who share the same values, to improve community engagement with the police, and to keep fit and healthy.

Interested? Learn more by clicking here

Apply today by clicking here, or by emailing

Whitchurch Memorial Hall

The Hall is home to an Art class, Yoga, Short Mat Bowls, Fitsteps, Table tennis, Puppy training. All are welcome. For dates and times please check the Memorial Hall website

Many people are not aware that the Hall has an upstairs Snooker Room with a very recently refurbished table. The room can be hired by individuals wanting an occasional or regular chance to play. There are two main Snooker groups which meet on Tuesday evenings and Thursday afternoons. Please direct enquiries to Judith Gill (07768 096438) in the first instance.
To book the Hall contact June Ruck (01600 890784)

The Hall is a registered charity.

2021 Census Population Results For Herefordshire

Apart from 1941 an annual census has taken place in this country since 1811 and the preliminary results of the 2021 census and estimates were published a few weeks ago. The population of Herefordshire has risen to 187,100, a rise of 3,600 people, which is an increase of 2% on 2011. However that is a slower rate than England and Wales as a whole which saw on average an increase of 6.6%.

With approximately 86 people per square kilometre, Herefordshire has the fourth lowest population density out of all the counties in England (equivalent to two football pitches per person).

The number of children under 15 has decreased by 4.3% over the last ten years compared to a national increase of 5%.

The number of people aged between 15 to 64 has declined by 4.1% compared to 13.6% increase nationally.

The number of over 65 year olds and over on the other hand has increased by 24.1% in the last ten years compared to 20.1% nationally.

There are 4,500 more households in the county than in 2011, up by 5.7% compared to a national increase of 6.1%.

Herefordshire has a higher proportion of residents in their early fifties and above and lower proportions of young people. There are more females and males reflecting the national pattern with 97 men to every 100 women (96 in England and Wales).

This information starts to clearly paint a picture of the future pressures on our public services, particularly local health and care, and some of the challenges ahead for our local economy, housing market and education system.

Cllr. Elissa Swinglehurst

Herefordshire County Councillor, Llangarron Ward

If you would like to see more information regarding this, click on the button for some funky facts and figures: Funky Facts

Whitchurch Clock Tower

A statement from Whitchurch and Ganarew Group Parish Council

February 2019

The parish council has become aware that some residents believe that the Whitchurch Clock Tower is owned by the parish council and as such it is their responsibility to maintain and manage this listed building.

The parish council would like to make it clear that they do not own, and never have had ownership of the clock tower, and therefore (confirmed after taking legal advice) have no responsibility for its maintenance, insurance, repairs or any other associated liabilities.

It is not registered with the Land Registry and extensive research by the parish council in the County Records Office have proved fruitless. We have demonstrated that ownership/trusteeship of the building is not available through the normal legal administration.

Should anyone reading this have any evidence to demonstrate the current ownership of the clock tower we would be delighted to hear from you.

The parish council over the past years have paid for the clock's annual service and any repairs that are required, and for the electricity supply and will continue to do so until proper ownership is established.

Following legal advice, the parish council will be writing to Herefordshire Council. As the clock tower is a Grade II listed building, they have a responsibility for its upkeep.

This statement will be updated as more information becomes available.

Policy Towards Churchyard Maintenance Financial Assistance


Over the past years there has been regular debate as to whether a Town or Parish Council can under its powers of the Local Government Acts contribute towards the maintenance of its Church of England graveyards

In 2019 NALC (National Association of Local Councils) issued an advice note that in their opinion the free resource section of the LGA 1972 (Section 137) could not be used towards this use. Their reason for this is that section 8 of the LGA 1894 prohibits expenditure by local Councils on property relating to the affairs of church.

The present situation and alternative legal advice

This view expressed by NALC is not supported by Central Government as they say that section 137 of the LGA 1972 is not overridden by the 1894 Act and the fact that Councils have for many years contributed towards the cost of churchyard maintenance without any apparent challenge or questions by the appointed external auditors to these Councils. Central Government stand that this legislation is valid and further new legislation is not necessary.

Further independent legal advice on this matter is given by Paul Clayden, consultant and author of many reference books relating to law and procedures for Town and Parish Councils. It is his opinion that section 137 of the LGA 1972 gives a very wide power to spend money on matters of general benefit to the inhabitants and it would be strange if that power did not extend to benefiting a church / churchyard maintenance of local importance. He further supports the view that this has not been challenged by the appointed external auditors.

Paul Clayden also gives the view that a Council can contribute to the cost of churchyard maintenance under section 214(6) of the LGA 1972. This provision overrides the provision of section 8 of the LGA 1894. Furthermore it should be considered that if the Parish church be closed then the Parish Council will be required to take over the maintenance of the churchyard LGA 1972 section 215 (2).

The opinion of Whitchurch and Ganarew Group Parish Council

The appointed Finance working group support the opinions of Central Government and that of the independent legal advisor Paul Clayden. They propose to Council members a resolution that the support towards the churchyard maintenance of St Dubricius and St Swithins continues as a budget and payment item in the accounts. Should Central Government issue further advice / guidance on the matter then this would be considered by the Finance working group and resolution by the Council.

Symonds Yat and the River Wye. The Birthplace of Tourism

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