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Arts and Crafts

Create Together is kicking off 2020 with the first course starting 2nd Feb in Congresbury.
Create Together is working to make arts and crafts more accessible to more people across North Somerset to increase positive wellbeing and mental health.
If you are interested or know anyone that would benefit from coming along to a friendly and relaxed arts and craft group please get in touch with Helen on 07719 439920
P.S you don’t have to be an artist to come along, just a willingness to join in and fun.
Booking is essential.

Police warning

There have been reports of “Nottingham Knockers” operating in the Congresbury area. One of which has been particularly rude to one resident recently. These are cold callers who usually tell residents that they are ex-offenders trying to go straight, then try and sell poor quality and over-priced cleaning products. The police want to remind residents they are under no obligation to answer the door to anyone they don’t know or aren’t expecting. If you do talk to them, they are supposed to be able to provide a valid Pedlar’s Certificate and should leave your property when asked.

Police always recommend using a door chain and asking to see the identification of unexpected callers.

• If you are suspicious of a caller ring 999 straight away • keep your cash in the bank, not at home • keep windows and doors secured if you’re not in the room • set up a No Cold Calling Zone – contact your local Council Trading Standards Office

Bike security

Police officers in North Somerset are encouraging those who had new bikes for Christmas to get them security marked.
On Sunday 26 January between 9am-3pm officers from the Worle beat team will be at Sainsbury’s carrying out security marking of bike frames – in an effort to deter thieves.

Extra opening at cafe

The community cafe in Bridge House will also be open every Thursday morning from 9 – 1pm starting on Thursday 9 January. This is in addition to its regular Wednesday and Friday opening.

Charity quiz

The Plough Inn’s weekly quiz on Sunday 19th January will be in aid of Children’s Hospice South West. The fun starts at 8.30pm. £1 to enter. Raffle. All welcome. Other quizzes for the same charity will be held on May 24th and October 11th.

Community Cafe

The community cafe in Bridge House will be open this Saturday from 9 till 1pm.

It will be closed over Christmas / New Year and re open on Friday 3 January. 

We wish all of our customers a relaxing and happy Brexit free Christmas and New year.

The Strawberry Line in December

After weeks of rain and more rain the sun peeped out on Sunday afternoon. Not for long !

I don’t need to be persuaded to get out of the armchair and go for a bike ride when the sun is shining. Christmas came early. The Strawberry line was pure magic, it might be winter but there is so much to see that you don’t see in the summer when the leaves are on the trees and the hedgerows are bursting with fruit and colour.

The winter sun seems to be more gentle and picks out the Mendips as the clouds rush past. I love the shapes and silhouettes of the trees in winter. The branches are like lace and the veins of the trees. The willow tree below was glowing – almost had its own fairy lights.

The colder weather and high winds has driven the fieldfares and redwings from Scandinavia to spend the winter in England. They don’t need to worry about visa’s and work permits. Until a month ago the red berries of the Hawthorns were fat and ripe for eating. The early birds have cleaned up and stripped the trees bare. There are some sloes and rose hips as well as the white mistletoe left, but they are all being avoided. Its probably too late to make sloe gin for Christmas !

Image result for Fieldfares and redwings

Thatchers Cider Orchards near Sandford are being pruned and made ready for next year. At first I though that I may have at long last seen the ‘Beast of Sandford’ a large puma stalking the orchards. But it turned out to be an exceedingly large black and white cat. He or she was about a mile from the factory and well fed. Maybe Pat the Postman left it to look for Katy !

Most of the cattle are now in the barns – the fields have huge lakes of water and the Rhynes are full to the brim. Some sheep are waddling around in the wet grass looking very forlorn. No sign of Shaun !

I did see two rather plump and bushy tailed squirrels. They were enjoying the sun before spending the cold weeks ahead in their drays and hibernating until spring.

Image result for Grey squirrels

No sign of the badgers, but they are furiously digging under the railway track. The are serious diggers and are shifting tons of stone. Seems a bit strange as its hard work digging out stone compared to soil, but perhaps the railway track is well drained and its nice and dry to set up home. 

There were some small flocks of long tailed tits hopping along the hedgerows. They look like puff balls on a stick. A few swans were sat in the fields and lots of crows all feeding away on chafer grubs. Doing a great service to the farmers.

See the source image

Now everything has stopped growing the seed heads of the old man’s beard, ivy and cow parsley are beautiful and add to the splendour of this lovely place.

With the shortest day about to happen we can all look forward to another season of colour, flowers and fruit adorning the Strawberry Line like a bouquet around our village.

Michael Greaves

Action needed on drain clearing

The Community Resilience team is asking residents of Congresbury to help keep clear gutters and kerbs outside and around their properties. 

This will help the flow of rain water to drains in heavy storms and manage the risk of flooding.  Unfortunately North Somerset Council cuts have meant that this is a job that is no longer a priority, but it is essential for Congresbury as we live on a flood plain. 

Volunteers from Community Resilience North Somerset flood team (who are all residents of Congresbury) carry out quarterly checks on the gullies in all the roads in Congresbury. Our volunteers clear what they can and we report to North Somerset Council any blocked or damaged drains/gullies. If you would like to volunteer for the team or find out more please take a look https://communityresilience-ns.org.uk/join-us-now/ or send an email to congresburyflood@gmail.com

Police call on public to sign-up for counter-terrorism training

An award-winning counter terrorism training course – originally devised in partnership with Marks and Spencer – is being made available to the public for the first time and Avon and Somerset Police is calling on members of the public to sign up and help protect the UK.

The ACT Awareness eLearning package was previously only available to staff working in crowded places like shopping centres and entertainment venues and participants needed to be signed up by their employees.

Now Counter Terrorism Policing has decided to open up the training to anyone who wants to become a CT Citizen so they can learn how to spot the signs of suspicious behaviour and understand what to do in the event of a major incident.

The decision to offer the training to the public was not made in response to the recent attack in London. However, that tragic event, when two people lost their lives to terrorism, was a stark reminder of the ongoing threat and the need for vigilance.

Assistant Chief Constable Stephen Cullen said: “ACT Awareness eLearning is especially useful for anyone working in or regularly visiting crowded places.

“Developed alongside industry experts more than one and a half million modules have already been completed.

“The course has been so popular, with nine out of 10 users saying they would recommend it, we want to open it up to as many people as possible.

“The threat level remains at Substantial – meaning an attack is likely – so giving everyone the chance to be extra eyes and ears for police and local security teams help to keep all communities across the Avon and Somerset area safe.

“The festive period is obviously a very busy one – so this is a good time to join up and become a CT Citizen.”

ACT Awareness is made up of seven modules that take a few minutes each to complete. You can pause and re-join at any time. In total it takes just 45 minutes – so less than an hour of your time could help to prevent an attack or help save lives if one was to happen.

The course is hosted by online training specialists Highfield. To register and start learning, click here.

CRAG calls for end to Gladman ‘tinkering’

Wrington Lane residents are exasperated by developer Gladman’s repeated attempts to modify the highways plan for their proposed housing scheme and now Congresbury Residents Action Group (CRAG) wants to call time on their efforts. Gladman has made four applications against North Somerset Council’s refusal to allow changes to the carriageway in Wrington Lane. CRAG believes the actions are wasting time and costing ratepayers many thousands of pounds.

Gladman has made four applications against North Somerset Council’s refusal to allow changes to the carriageway in Wrington Lane. CRAG believes the actions are wasting time and costing ratepayers many thousands of pounds. Read more

Shop charity boosts junior cricket

Congresbury Cricket Club has received a £100 donation towards junior cricket from the charity Making a Difference Locally. The money will go towards improving the junior cricket nets.

Ben Payne hands over the cheque to cricket club treasurer Colin Edwards

The cheque was handed over to CCC treasurer Colin Edwards by Under 11 player Ben Payne (pictured).


CCC’s Under 11 manager Nick Clifton thanked Pinky Patel from the village shop Welcome Congresbury in The Precinct and Ben and Claire Payne for making the donation happen.

Making a Difference Locally is a charity that supports local communities served by local independently-owned convenience stores that are members of Nisa, a buying organisation (http://www.nisaretail.com).

Avon & Somerset Police statement

“We’re supporting the latest Counter Terrorism Policing campaign to help keep crowded places secure over the festive period.

The campaign calls on the public and those who work in our busy towns and cities to remain vigilant and report any concerns to staff, security or – in confidence – to Counter Terrorism police at gov.uk/ACT. It also asks everyone to be the extra eyes and ears of the police, so we can work together to tackle terrorism”. Read more

Advice from Neighbourhood Watch

With just 23 days to go until Christmas, we want to share with you some top tips to protect yourselves during this festive period so you can all enjoy the festivities & have a happy new year. We all know there are so many scams around at the moment and these appear to change on an almost daily basis, but please do not be alarmed. Common sense always prevails and as they always say “if it seems too good”.

The Golden Rules:

Never give out your bank details (Pin / Password) EVER.

Not sure don’t answer the door, it’s your home!

Be very wary of following links you are sent via email, go through your own trusted sites.

Don’t be bullied on the phone, HANG UP

Please do not advertise what’s in your home, only put waste out on collection day.

Leaving your home unattended? Put the lights on a timer or ask a friend to visit or park on your drive.

(And please check on your neighbours, if you see papers / post building up on the doorstep, just check)

Click here for full Christmas Security advice

Community Cafe

This Wednesday 4 Dec. the café will be open from 9 to 1pm and 2 – 6pm. After 6pm basic tea & coffees will be available on a takeaway basis for donations.

Police warn against telephone fraud

Click HERE for full information

Two victims were contacted by callers purporting to be from Lloyds Bank and advised there was a problem with their bank debit card and they would be sending someone to collect the cards and that a replacement card would be delivered to their home. In both incidents the bogus caller was wearing a high visibility jacket. We are urging people to be vigilant and on their guard to such calls. Banks will never personally attend a home address to collect or deliver cards or important documents, and bank details and personal information – including PiN numbers – should never be disclosed.

Taxi services and courier companies in the county who have been made aware of the courier fraud offending and continue to pick up ‘packages’ from victims could face prosecution