Clare Fire Station – recruitment drive
20 March 2017
Clare has operated a fire service from the town centre for over 200 years. [Pop into the Ancient House Museum for the slide-show and see when the horse-drawn tender was based behind no 32 Callis Street.] Its current base in Station Road has been operating since 1954. Along with Suffolk Fire & Rescue Service it is now recruiting on-call firefighters across the county. Ring our watch commander – Mark Hill, on 07890 070 055, or visit the station on one of its Thursday training nights (6-8 pm). You can also find information online.
Clare Station is having a recruitment drive on Market Hill on Saturday 22nd April, from 10-12. At least one fire appliance will be positioned there. CLASP and the newly formed Clare First Responders will also attend.
There are two full pages about our firefighters in the latest edition of Focus.
17 March 2017
The Churchyard gates, both sets north & south, have been removed this week for sandblasting, and repainting.
13 March 2017
Do you have any views on reinstating the market in Clare? St Edmundsbury Borough Council is looking at the feasibility of re-creating a street market in Clare and would like to hear the views of residents and businesses. This follows a plan submitted by Robin Stone and a meeting of several interested parties.
There will be an informal drop-in session between 5pm – 8pm on Tuesday 28th March at the Bell Hotel. We would welcome people’s ideas, views and concerns. Please come along and meet us and have your say: Sharon Fairweather, Market Development Officer, St Edmundsbury BC.
The clerk and the chair of the Town Council had a positive meeting with Sharon today. She was given early sight of the Community Survey results which included what shops and services residents wished to see, as this might suggest the mix of offers that a market could contain. Together they agreed that after the consultation event she will hopefully be in a position to come back with proposals on the mix of the market, its location and how often it is run.
12 March 2017
Haverhill Safer Neighbourhood Team will station a Mobile Police Station on Market Hill, opposite the Town Hall – Monday 27th March, 10am – 1pm. Local residents and shoppers are invited to come along to speak to their local team of officers, ask questions about crime reduction and obtain advice on burglary prevention. For further information, please call Haverhill SNT on 101.
Bury St Edmunds to Clare Challenge
10 March 2017
A challenge for walkers & runners on Sunday 21st May 2017: a route over the gently undulating countryside of West Suffolk, through the villages of Hawstead, Whepstead, Somerton and others.
Start: Nowton Park Bury Road, Nowton, Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk IP29 5BD
Finish: Clare Castle Country Park, Suffolk CO10 8NW
Time: Walkers start 9:00am, Runners 10:30am
Clare Social Club events
Easter Egg Hunt Saturday 15th April
Children’s Entertainment from 2pm
Egg Hunt around the Country Park from 3pm
Disco with Chris in the evening
Quiz Nite Saturday 22 April £1 per person Bar open 7:30
Crib Drive Saturday 11 March & Saturday 8 April Cash prizes Bar open 7:30
Live Music Bar open 7:30
The fabulous Ben Smith Saturday 18 March
The return of the one & only JD The Soulman
Faster broadband continues to be installed across Suffolk. To check on the up-to-date situation in your postcode, visit the map here. Most of Clare has the higher speed; a few areas do not – installation is expected between 2017-19.
To find the best deal that suits you, go to one of the broadband deal sites, like uSwitch or MoneySuperMarket. You’ll just need your postcode. Such sites are also good for checking the deals you can get for gas and electricity, car & house insurance, banking & mobile phones……
CLASP table sales
28 February 2017
The next fund-raising event takes place on Saturday April 1
All welcome: societies, individuals, crafts etc.
For information & table bookings: T: 01787 277 810 E: ek1000(Replace this parenthesis with the @ sign)btinternet.com
Doors open to table holders: 8.15 am.
Table hire £7.50 (+ Tombola Prize Donation); Double table £12.50
Sales Start 9.00 to 12.30 + Refreshments & Tombola all in aid of CLASP
Future dates (all on a Saturday): May 13, June 24, August 5, September 16, October 14, November 25.
Works at Church Farm
24 February 2017
Another attempt from Monday 27 onwards is to be made in the High Street by Dyno Central to connect up Church Farm surface water drainage to the main drains in the High Street. Entrance to the cemetery will be unimpeded. There will be parking restrictions in the immediate area.
Date for everyone’s diary!
22 February 2017
Bird flu update – Suffolk
16 February 2017
The UK’s Deputy Chief Veterinary Officer has announced an initial 10km Temporary Control Zone around a poultry premises near Redgrave, Suffolk, following investigation into a suspected case of Avian Influenza where laboratory analysis has identified the presence of H5N8. The affected premises is estimated to contain approximately 23,000 birds. A number have died and it has been decided to humanely cull the remaining birds. Further investigations continue into the nature of the virus detected and to establish the possible source of the infection.
Defra have published full details of the controls in place. You can use their interactive map to check if you are affected by restrictions around the premises. Suffolk Trading Standards are providing regular updates via their social media channels, Twitter and Facebook, as well as to all their Consumer Champions via email (find out how to sign up here).
Starting from Wednesday 15th February, Suffolk Trading Standards will be working with their colleagues in Norfolk Trading Standards to visit all premises within the 3km zone.
Read the latest advice and information on avian flu in the UK, including actions to reduce the risk of the disease spreading, advice for anyone who keeps poultry or captive birds and details of previous cases.
If you keep poultry you are required to take action to reduce the risk of avian flu spreading. All poultry keepers – whether commercial farmers or those with a small backyard flock – are currently required by law to house poultry or otherwise keep them separate from wild birds. This is because a Prevention Zone is currently in force across the UK. This applies until 28 February 2017.
For advice and guidance on what to do if you keep poultry or to report suspicion of disease in animals, call the Defra Rural Services Helpline on 03000 200 301 or read our detailed guidance on avian influenza.
Members of the public should report dead wild birds – such as swans, geese, ducks, gulls or birds of prey – to the Defra helpline on 03459 33 55 77. Defra will then collect some of these birds and test them to help us understand how the disease is distributed geographically and in different types of bird.
Public Health England advises the risk to public health from the virus is very low and the Food Standards Agency is clear that bird flu does not pose a food safety risk for UK consumers.
13 February 2017
The Focus Magazine has recently published a Local Community Directory. Called The Focus Red Book the directory contains contact numbers for local services as well as clubs and societies. The booklet has been published to meet requests from local people for a reference source of handy numbers. The Red Book can sit neatly next to your phone and can be updated as required.
Copies of The Red Book are free and can be found at local Clare outlets or from Focus Publications : 01787 278 327
Pick up your copy before they all go.
Reducing fuel costs
2 February 2017
On Wednesday 15 February 4-5pm in the Old School Community Centre, a free short training course is on offer: “Raising awareness of fuel poverty, advice & help for reducing costs”. It will be run by a Financial Capability Manager from the Citizen’s Advice Bureau, using a grant from Suffolk Foundation, a project initiated by Clare Town Council.
The idea is to train some local people to help fellow residents to find the best utility costs – too many are stuck on high rates, paying more than they need to. Using the techniques offered, you might be able to reduce your own bills!
Only a basic level of computer literacy is required – searching with Google, sending emails.
Please ring Christine Little 01787 277 743 if you would like to attend.
Help your neighbour, help yourself!
Rise in Precept for 2017-18 for Policing
2 February 2017
Police and Crime Commissioner, Tim Passmore announced on January 31 that he will be asking council taxpayers to pay an average of just under 1p a day extra towards policing in the county in the next financial year. The PCC presented his precept proposal to the Police and Crime Panel meeting at Suffolk County Council’s HQ for their consideration; the panel unanimously supported the proposal.
Raising the precept by 1.972% will add approximately £830,000 to the Constabulary’s budget in the next financial year. This increase to the policing element of the precept means the average council tax payment will increase from £173.43 to £176.85 per year in 2016/17, an average of just under 7p a week (based on Band D property).
Tim Passmore said, “I am reassured that the Police and Crime Panel accepted my recommendation to raise the policing element of the precept this year. I am conscious that finances are tight in many households but this increase of just under 1p a day is required to continue to keep Suffolk safe. He added, “Suffolk Constabulary does a great job; it’s a low-cost force and offers good value for money but savings still need to be made. Over the next four years we have to save £6.76m, the Chief Constable has identified £4.1m but that still leaves £2.6m to find, which is no easy feat. The demand on the Constabulary is changing so the way they police the county needs to change too but I want to reassure everyone that Suffolk Constabulary will continue to respond in an emergency and your safer neighbourhood teams will continue to operate locally, supported by the neighbourhood response teams and enhanced investigation teams.”
31 January 2017
Five fruit trees were planted this morning in the cemetery, four apples and one pear. They were given to the town by the Scattered Orchards project, part of Dedham Valley AONB & Stour Valley. Two of the varieties are of Suffolk origin: S Edmund’s Russett & Lady Henniker. Images may be found at the foot of this page.
24 January 2017
and at 7pm (adults £5.00, children £2.50)
Mark Rylance as the Big Friendly Giant, with Penelope Wilton & Rafe Spall.
Edge markers in Callis Street
17 January 2017
Stone edge markers have been set in the swards on Callis Street to control vehicles mounting the grass: four set on the circular space to the north of Common Street (where a Clare in Bloom trough is placed); a pair on the small triangle where the Town Trail sign is positioned; additional ones either side of the slip-road coming down from the Globe. All markers are marked with white paint; existing ones are repainted.
Tree works in the New Year
17 January 2017
The cemetery has had wide-scale wood management taking place. The most extensive work took place along the eastern boundary. Elm trees affected by disease were felled; the stumps will be treated to prevent regrowth. A yew tree, previously thinned to control overhanging a neighbour and found to be rotten at the base has been felled. Trees and shrubs that are restricting the growth of good specimen oaks, field maples and a Scots Pine were thinned or removed.
A dying field maple in the centre of the cemetery, part of a old hedgerow, was felled. Cherries around the turning circle had damaged branches removed. The large cherry behind the chapel was thinned so that its branches will not encroach on the roof.
The cemetery will shortly be benefiting from the Scattered Orchard Project, part of the Dedham Vale AONB Sustainable Development Fund which is providing 5 local varieties of fruit or nut tree in each parish. They will be planted shortly. The Country Park is receiving a similar number of trees.
The Stour Valley Volunteers worked in the Nuttery, clearing away bramble and scrub, and opening up the west entrance through the hedge. Wood chippings from the cemetery work will be spread along the paths.
Clare Castle Country Park is also undertaking extensive tree work in the New Year, following advice from arboriculturists. Work to clear the view of the motte from across the moat has begun. Elsewhere, dead and diseased trees will be felled. Thinning out will occur to allow better specimens more space to flourish and to allow more sunlight to penetrate to the woodland floor, encouraging dormant seeds to flower and restoring a greater diversity of wildlife.
Film shows in the Library resume on Thursday 26th January at 7pm.
Tickets for £5 are available from the Library.
Love & Friendship with Kate Beckinsale & Chloe Sevigny is a period comedy based on a Jane Austen novella.