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Travel disruption expected as bridge transported to Bath

We’re alerting road users to potential disruption on Tuesday 19 May when an abnormal load travels through our area.

Sections of a bridge are being transported from Belgium to Bath.

On Tuesday morning, 19 May, two loads will be escorted by police along the M4, M32, A4174, A4, A36 and A367 to Corn Street, Bath.

Each is 5.2m wide and 34m long and is expected to travel no faster than 12mph.

Road users should expect disruption and ideally avoid the route between 10.30am and 12.30pm.

Bath and North East Somerset Council has more information about the bridge on its website

Big names boost mental health charity

The hunt is on to uncover the hidden artistic skills of the South West and beyond, with the launch of a new online talent competition by the North Somerset mental health charity Vine Counselling Services, based in Congresbury. 

Unlock Your Talent is an online talent festival created by multi-award winning musician and songwriter Rachel Mason in collaboration with the charity. 

Launching this week, top prizes include platinum recording packages and singing, art, dance and photographic masterclasses. Internationally renowned artists including Strictly Come Dancing professional dancer Karen HauerDeke Sharon, the musical director of the Pitch Perfect movies, Ruti (winner of The Voice 2018) and Hamilton cast member Aaron Lee Lambert, to name but a few, will be joining the judging panel. 

Contestants of all ages are being invited to demonstrate their abilities across a broad spectrum of artistic platforms including dance, music, drama, art, photography, film making, graphic design, make up, poetry and short story writing. 

When Rachel learned that the charity’s finances had been seriously affected by the covid-19 pandemic, she decided she would do something to help. Calling upon her celebrity contacts through her work as one of the top vocal teachers in the UK and a judge for Sky One’s Sing: Ultimate A Cappella, she has organised the Unlock Your Talent Festival with the aim of raising funds for the charity whilst at the same time inspiring people to embrace art during these stressful times. 

“I was thinking about how I could support people during lockdown – and it suddenly occurred to me that I could create one big event that would tick lots of boxes including supporting young people and encouraging good mental health,” said Rachel. As the UK’s current Freelancer of the Year, she also wanted to help self-employed people who are suffering at the hands of covid-19. 

As a vocal teacher and mentor to young musicians, Rachel, who often works from her North Somerset studio, is also aware of how many young people are feeling bereft having put so much effort into their art, music, media and dance GCSE, A Level and degree coursework, only to be told that it will not be marked by teachers or examiners. She is hoping that the festival will encourage them to enter and show off their work to industry professionals from all over the world. Participants will be asked to make a small donation of £5, £10 or £20 for each entry via Just Giving. 

Vine Counselling Services offers donation-based professional counselling to people in the community who are struggling due to bereavement, stress, anxiety, abuse, isolation, loneliness, family problems and other issues. During the covid-19 lockdown, Vine has set up a video and telephone service to enable the charity to continue to offer support during this difficult time until face-to-face counselling can be resumed. 

Liz Linnitt, Director of Vine Counselling Services, said: “We know many people are experiencing immense pressures and different challenges during these unchartered waters of lockdown and others may need more support when we are navigating a new ‘normal’. We’re doing our very best to continue to provide our crucial services but our fundraising is being seriously impacted because we’ve had to cancel many planned events. We hope the Unlock Your Talent Festival will encourage people to explore the joy of art and at the same time, bring in some much-needed additional funds for the charity. We’re extremely grateful to Rachel for supporting us.” 

Go to for more information about entering plus the prizes, judges, and categories. Participants must submit their work via a video or photograph.  Closing date is 31 May 2020.

The night the Luftwaffe dropped in on Congresbury

This Friday the country will celebrate the 75th anniversary of VE Day – marking the allied victory in Europe.

VE Day in Wrington Lane, 1945. Picture courtesy Clive Burlton

Our picture, courtesy of Clive Burlton, shows residents of Wrington Lane celebrating VE Day in 1945. 

Clive says that this Friday, they are going to attempt “a safe distanced replication as a doffing of the cap to that generation…”

Clive and Chris Short of Congresbury History Group have also updated the story of ‘The Night the Luftwaffe dropped in on Congresbury’. It ended up with the crew of a Heinkel bomber who had to bail out being captured near Kent Road – where Tesco Express is today – by members of the Home Guard; another behind Wrington Lane near where Verlands is today and another near the Star Inn on Rhodyate Hill by another Home Guard from the Congresbury Platoon. You can read the full account here.

VE Day – May 8th

Official commemorations will begin at 11am with a national moment of remembrance and two minutes’ silence.

11am | The Nation Remembers BBC One will lead a poignant two-minute silence to mark the 75th anniversary of the end of the Second World War.

2.45pm | The Announcement of Victory Winston Churchill’s historic speech will also be broadcast – providing a fascinating insight into what the public will have heard on that significant day all those years ago.

8pm | The People’s Celebration Viewers can also tune in to a special programme on VE Day on BBC One, which will see some of the UK’s biggest stars (Katherine Jenkins, Beverley Knight), sing a rendition of the iconic ‘We’ll Meet Again’, by Vera Lynn. Throughout the show, we will hear from the real stars of the night, the people who still remember that historic evening and can tell us what it was like, first hand.

9pm | The Queen’s speech: The Queen herself will be giving a special address to the nation (her second during the coronavirus pandemic), at 9am on 8th May – which is the exact same time that her father, King George VI, spoke to the UK 75 years ago, on the actual VE Day.

This is a test post to link to Facebook

Have you seen this man?

Wanted: David Broad

Police are appealing for the public’s help to locate wanted man David Broad. 

Broad, aged 32, from Banwell, is wanted on a recall to prison and also in connection with two burglaries – one in Edinburgh and one in Twickenham. 

He is known to frequent the Weston-super-Mare area and is described as white, 6ft 4ins, of proportionate build, with blue eyes, short ginger hair, and he has tattoos on his wrists/arms. He has an Irish accent.

If you have information which could help locate him, please call Avon & Somerset Police on 101 and give the call handler the reference number 5220040970.

A brief history of Broad Street

Chris Short of Congresbury History Group thought this would be of interest to all of us during lockdown. As he notes, this is not a definitive history, but “a light-hearted attempt to rekindle memories and provide a bit of diversion during this difficult period.” Click here to read it.

Fair Day in the early 1900s. Picture courtesy Congresbury History Group

Burglary at St Andrews Church

The Police have asked for information about this burglary which took place between 11:50pm on 24th and 00:20am on 25th April.

The offenders gained access by forcing the south porch medieval door and stealing two boxes of Foodbank produce before entering the church and departing with nativity figurines. The perpetrators were seen both entering and leaving the building carrying boxes.

The Police would like anyone with information about this incident to contact them by calling 101 quoting reference number: 5220091185, or call Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.

Internet Security

The Parish Council has advised us this letter has been circulated widely in Congresbury. It is linked to an app. Concerns have been raised regarding the security of products and services sourced via this app. Users submit their real names and addresses which can be accessed by other users including commercial enterprises. Please read, research and make your own judgement. Stay safe on line.

Two comments were made about this on Facebook. Dave Robins There is nothing wrong with this social Media App… it has 285 people in congresbury and 444 people in Yatton and 80 in Kingston Seymour alone using it daily as we speak… 

it has been live in this area since 2018 and world wide since 2008….
Facebook and Apple have tried to buy it but were refused…. 
the person who has posted this has just followed the misinformed local rumour mill like Chinese 
whispers…the letter may or may not be a scam as described but the App is international…. 
maybe Google the App and have a look on wikipedia….or the recent BBC article which described the App as the Facebook that Mark Zuckerberg wished he had made.

Love Congresbury As was reported yesterday, the app is genuine and can be used well, but it uses people’s names/addresses without express permissions and can be a site for fraudsters-there are safer ways to help your neighbours during this time.…/nextdoor-is-the-go-to…/amp

Nextdoor Is the Go-To Online Destination for Local Scammers - InsideHook

INSIDEHOOK.COMNextdoor Is the Go-To Online Destination for Local Scammers -…

Show patience and compassion when visiting pharmacies

Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) Sue Mountstevens is urging Avon and Somerset residents to be patient and compassionate when visiting local pharmacies, following concerns of violent and threatening behaviour towards pharmaceutical staff across the UK. Click here for more information.

Police message

Trading Standards have told us that a number of residents have been called on their landline from a fake 01225 number, claiming to be from the Government. The automated voice said that the Government is instructing them to wear a facemask and to press a number on the keypad to make a purchase. Fortunately the residents have recognised this as a scam.

Although these calls were made to residents in the Bath area at present, it is likely that this will become far more widespread and will no doubt include our area. Please remain alert to any potential scam calls.

Police issue scam and fraud safety video

Avon & Somerset Police have published the latest of their popular senior safety videos, which discusses the topic of Covid-19 scams and frauds that are being targeted at the vulnerable and elderly. This may help protect the many frightened and vulnerable elderly citizens in our communities.

To watch the video, click here

Warning over Tesco email scam

Police have been alerted by a Neighbourhood Watch scheme of a scam email that claims to be from Tesco saying that “You Are Our Winner”. It doesn’t say what you have won, but asks you to click on a link to confirm your identity.

Police urge you not to click on these links as you may download a virus onto your computer. At the very least it will try and get your personal details. The email comes from a company in Kentucky in the United States.

As with any email you get unexpectedly from someone you don’t know, delete this message without clicking on any of the links

Witness appeal after anti-social driving

Police have just released details of an incident last Thursday (April 9) when officers were called to Cheddar Gorge following reports of several vehicles being driven dangerously.

One motorist was stopped after trying to make off from officers.

The male driver was reported for allegedly driving without tax, driving without due care and attention and not maintaining the car to a safe standard due to insufficient tyre tread.

The driver had previously been warned regarding antisocial driving and following this latest incident the vehicle was seized.

The vehicle was searched and the 29-year-old male was arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence of a class B drug and possession of class B drug. He has been released under investigation.

Enquiries are being carried out to try to identify other vehicles involved, one of which is believed to be a red BMW 3 Series.

PC James Fowler said: “We take reports of antisocial behaviour and driving in Cheddar Gorge extremely seriously, no more so now than when we are all being asked to stay at home to protect the NHS and save lives.

“We will continue to patrol the Gorge to try to prevent a repeat of this antisocial behaviour.

“If anyone can help us identify the other drivers involved, please contact us.”

Anyone with information can report it online and give reference number 5220079552. Alternatively, if you cannot report it online, call 101.