M4 Junctions 12 to 13 – Bridge Refurbishment Works

Work that started in February 2017 to the two bridges which carry the M4 over Ashampstead Road and Dark Lane is now in its final stages and is to be completed in August 2017.

Following completion of this scheme, work will start to three further bridges along the M4 near Hermitage, which will involve the same activities to replace the beams along the central reserve and longitudinal and transverse joints, waterproofing material and existing safety barrier (VRS) over the bridge central reserves.

Preparation works for the next scheme is scheduled to start in mid-August 2017 and will be done using overnight lane closures and occasional full overnight M4 closures.

The main work will then start in October 2017 and is scheduled to take eight months to complete. Work will primarily be undertaken during day time hours, however some activities will be carried out at night when necessary.

Long term monitoring has found that the two bridges which carry the M4 over Ashampstead Road and Dark Lane, near Bradfield in West Berkshire, require extensive repair due to chloride-induced corrosion.  Critical repairs are required to address the defects and ensure the structures remain in a safe and serviceable condition.

Blacklands Copse woodland management 2016 programme

Work will begin on the 2016 Blacklands Copse harvesting programme in July.

Please see the attached map showing the various parcels of timber to be worked. The felling of Cpt 9a will no doubt have the biggest impact with regard to noise & visual disturbance. Timings are somewhat weather/ground conditions dependant but the harvesting works should take in the region of 4-6 weeks and a further 1 to 2 weeks of further machine work to tidy compartment 9a & 7f of brash.

The fencing and planting work will then follow at some point next winter 2016/17.

There will be in the region of 1,500 Tonne of timber being extracted, so the stacking area and harvesting sites will be very busy with machinery. Please take notice of (conform with) all warning & instructional signs, as Health and Safety is of paramount importance.

If you have any questions please contact

Ralph Gascoigne BSc (Hons)

Wessex Woodland Management Ltd

01488 685 007 or 07818 417 824

Broadband Improvement Project - Sept 2015 update

The latest update from the Superfast project team at West Berks is that for phase 2 a contract has been awarded to Gigaclear to provide a fibre-to-the-premise (FTTP) solution across this remaining area before the end of 2017. This will therefore apply to large parts of Bucklebury that are still waiting for a superfast solution.

The project team is currently going through some detailed analysis of properties and postcodes and expect to have a high level roll out plan by the end of September 2015.

We will provide an update as soon as it is available and all information relating to Superfast Broadband can be found at: http://www.superfastberkshire.org.uk/.

Blacklands Copse woodland management

UPDATE: The Harvester is due to arrive at Blacklands Copse early in the week of the 4th August 2014 to commence work. As you may have seen the loading bay and stacking area is currently under construction and should be completed by the middle of next week.

A public meeting was held on Monday 23rd June at 2pm in The Oak Room for interested parishioners to understand the management plans for Blacklands Copse. Ralph Gascoigne from Wessex Woodland (who will be carrying out the work) gave a summary of the Management Plan and explained how the company works.

The Management Plan and associated maps are available below (note that the Hillfield Estate plan includes Blacklands Copse).

Bucklebury Artisan Market

Bucklebury is well known for great places to eat and yet, until now, it has never had its own market. No longer the case....the first Artisan Food Market took place on April 5th and set the scene for markets to come.

Pete and Avril parked their vintage tractor on the edge of the green and sold their wonderful rhubarb alongside other fruit and veg. Then tucked beside Emma's beautiful new coffee shop, The Blackbird and part inside, part outside the Bladebone Pub were stalls selling freshly baked bread (Birch Cottage and her apprentice), fresh cut and potted herbs and a wonderful selection of cakes (thanks to Vintage Rose, Blackberry Cottage and Bucklebury Biscuits).

St Crispins manned a stall selling cheese, eggs and honey alongside their organic Apple juice. Organic salad leaves from nearby, sold quickly. Laura and Pete from Cook and Butcher came up from Thatcham to sell, amongst other things, their renowned marmite sausages. Most stalls sold out well before closing. A pony and trap rode past and if had stopped could have picked up trade with rides across the green. Willie Hartley Russell opened up the green for parking and the call was for more stalls to fill the space. Thanks to Kiren for acting as host and supplying trays of wild garlic and a Bloody Mary station for those in need.

The market was set up to offer a local place for all that is needed, food-wise, for a great weekend of eating and entertaining. It will take place from 10am on the first Saturday of the month - see the Parish Diary for the next date. New stalls will be joining: a larger range of cheeses from Greys, Merry Kitchen quiches and Matthew's kitchen plus Kiren's own range, all increasing the choice of deli produce.

So mark the date in your diary and join us at the Bucklebury Food Market (BFM) ...as the owl and pussycat might say:

The Owl and the Pussy-cat went for a coffee (@ theblackbird)
Sat on a beautiful pea-green cloth (@Linteriors)
They bought some honey (@ BFM) and with plenty of money
Wrapped up a hampers worth of food (and stcrispins juice)
The Owl looked up to the acorns above
And drank to a happy crowd (@thebladebone)'O Local producers! O Market my love'
What a destination, Bucklebury, you are, you are.

Follow us on Twitter - BuckleburyArtisanMkt @BuckleburyAFM