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Bray community news (September 5): Holyport stones moved to prevent traveller incursion

Each week, the Advertiser packages all the news from the Bray page of our print edition into a handy web format.

Bray Parish Council (BPC) has carried out the first of two pieces of work intended to prevent traveller incursions in Holyport.

Over the last two years there have been six or seven traveller encampments on the green – which BPC is responsible for.

It first used the services of a bailiff  at Easter time, when there were travellers on the Green by Bourne Bridge.

To date the parish council has spent £4,151 plus VAT for three evictions.

The first step taken to tackle the recurring problem is raising the height of sizeable stones embedded around the green opposite Holyport Lodge.

Contractors used a digger to reposition the stones at a cost of £5,000 from Monday, August 19 to Friday, August 23.

BPC chairman Cllr Ken Elvin said: “These stones were already on the green but recessed into the grass, so bringing them up hopefully will dissuade travellers and people wishing to camp out with caravans or motor vehicles.”

In May BPC also submitted a planning application to build a ditch and bund along both sides of the A330 from Bartletts Lane up to the main green.

This method involves creating a double barrier by digging a trench and piling up the earth from it to form a bund.

Cllr Elvin said: “This green is part of the Holyport Conservation area so any work we do here must be subject to planning permission and currently the ditches and bunds down the A330 are subject to that planning process.”

No planning permission was necessary to reposition the stones as they were already present.

Cllr Elvin added: “The parish council owns and administers the green for the benefit of all residents and the measures we are implementing are intended to strike a balance between preventing unauthorised occupation of the land without compromising the openness of the green itself.”

Royal Oak head chef off to 'flying start'

A new head chef at The Royal Oak is off to ‘a flying start’ in his new role.

Matt Samson, previously of Cliveden House Hotel in Cliveden Road, joined the kitchen in Paley Street in July and has already developed some ‘exciting dishes’.

New vegan/vegetarian, children’s and table d’hôte menus ‘offer great choice and excellent value for money’.

The chef’s passion lies in seasonal food – ‘ensuring he gets the most flavour out of his carefully chosen produce while minimising waste‘.

Nick Parkinson, owner of The Royal Oak, said: “Matt has had a flying start, he’s cooking really tasty food without complication.

“He’s a great team player and has taken the ethos of the Oak in his stride. I am delighted to welcome him onboard.”

Artists of all levels invited to join classes

Art classes at Braywood War Memorial Hall have recommenced after a summer hiatus.

Bill Collier, who leads the classes, has been teaching art for 10 years and is encouraging anyone who wants to give the pursuit a try ‘to come along and have a go’.

He said: “I have had many people come to me who have never painted before, and I have told all of them that when they leave, they will go home with a picture in their hand – and I have never failed yet.”

As well as producing art to adorn the walls, the ‘painting pictures, in whatever medium you choose, is very therapeutic and gives great peace of mind while you are doing it’.

Classes are held on Monday from 10am-noon and 3-5pm, and on Tuesday from 3-5pm and 7-9pm and cost £6 with all materials provided.

Find out more at

Fi.Fest organisers submit revised licensing application

A second licensing application has been submitted by the organiser of Fi.Fest.

It is a ‘restricted licence limited to two days each year (over a weekend) for a family focused community event’.

The location of the application is Stroud Farm off Gays Lane –  where family festival Fi.Fest took place for a second year in August.

Prior to this year’s festival, Fi.Fest organiser Lee Page submitted an application to hold a maximum of five events a year for up to 3,000 people, with the hours set out at as Friday and Saturday, 10am-11pm and Sunday 10am-10pm.

It was discussed at a licensing panel sub-committee meeting in April but refused.

The specified days of the latest licence are Saturday and Sunday from 11am-10.30pm and includes the supply of alcohol on the premises.

The event will be split into two parts – a ‘Kids Zone’ and an ‘Events Area’ – as Fi.Fest has been for the last two years.

The last day for representations is September 18.

Music recitals back at church

Starting this weekend, Music at Bray is back with Sunday afternoon recitals at St Michael’s Church at 3pm.

The autumn season commences with clarinetist Catriona Scott and pianist Charlotte Brennard performing a programme of Poulenc and Finzi.

Admission is free with retiring collection, and tea and cakes will be served in the Church Hall afterwards.


Friday: Pilates keep-fit classes, Holyport War Memorial Hall, 1.35-2.45pm. Contact Tina Berry on 07557 127141.

Monday: Art classes, Braywood Memorial Hall, 10am-noon and 3-5pm.

Tuesday: Gentle Yoga, Holyport Scout HQ, from 9am. Contact Tara Sutthoff Crist at

Whist Club (alternate Tuesdays), Holyport War Memorial Hall, 2-4pm. Contact 01628 621953.

Art classes, Braywood Memorial Hall, 3-5pm and 7-9pm.

Circuit training, Holyport War Memorial Hall, 7-8pm. Call Jennie Saunders on 07766 461242.

Wednesday: Pilates, Holyport War Memorial Hall, 7.30-8.30pm. Call Matt Bryant on 07834 595322.

Smile, chair-based to standing exercise, Holyport War Memorial Hall, 2-4pm. Call Sarah Hill on 07876 586445.

Bray Senior Citizens Club, Bray Village Hall, 2-4pm. Email

Thursday: Mother and Baby Group, Holyport War Memorial Hall, 10-11.30am. Call Elizabeth Royds 07747 669769.

Boxing, Holyport War Memorial Hall, 4.30-6.30pm. Call Alexander Campbell-Borland on 07490 182185.

Holyport WI, Holyport War Memorial Hall, 7.45-10.15pm, Contact president, Jennifer Razey 01628 631 059 or secretary, Pauline Libby 01628 625 967

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