Savernake Parish News

Please contact the Chair if you have any queries.

Business Grants for Young People from Wiltshire and Swindon


November 2023

Wiltshire Community Foundation is working in partnership with the South West Enterprise Fund (SWEF) to provide grants of £2,000 to young people in Wiltshire and Swindon who are, self-employed, running a business or thinking of starting one in the next 6 months. As part of the programme, SWEF provides the opportunity to join a network of peers who are also in the early stage of starting their business to share ideas, experiences and learn.

To be eligible to apply individuals need to be:

  • aged 18 to 30
  • living in Wiltshire or Swindon
  • planning to start their business within the next 6 months or if they are already running one have been trading for no more than 2 years

Grants can be used towards capital items and running costs such as:

  • stock, equipment or materials
  • rent or business-related bills

The application process is simple and straightforward, and many previous applicants have told us that it helped sharpen their business plans and gave them the confidence to succeed.

If you have any further questions please contact Wiltshire Community Foundation on 01380 738985.

Nicola Hillier

Grants Manager

Wiltshire Community Foundation

Who to call for storm damage


November 2023

The following is a quick guide to what is and isn’t the responsibility of the Fire and Rescue Service when storm damage occurs:

ProblemWho to call
Fallen tree on road, not endangering lifeLocal authority
Fallen tree on road or vehicle, endangering lifeFire and Rescue Service – call 999
Fallen tree on property, not endangering lifePersonal responsibility
Fallen tree on property, endangering lifeFire and Rescue Service – call 999
Unsafe structure overhanging a public highway or public footpathFire and Rescue Service – call 999
Unsafe structure overhanging property, not endangering lifePersonal responsibility
Unsafe structure overhanging property, endangering lifeFire and Rescue Service – call 999
General floodingWait for water to subside. See also further advice.
Flooding with life riskFire and Rescue Service – call 999
Flooding affecting electricsOnly if safe to do so, isolate electrics – if in any doubt, contact the Fire and Rescue Service on 999
Power cutCall 105

Local authority information is as follows:

Local Plan Review

Marlborough Library


October 2023

Wiltshire Council has now prepared a draft Local Plan. This is the county-wide version of the Marlborough Neighbourhood Plan which was finally agreed in March 2023.

The Plan is now being offered for public consultation with in-person events being held around the country. The session in Marlborough is to be held on Monday 9th October from 3pm to 7pm at Marlborough Library, 91 High Street, Marlborough SN8 1HD.

If this time and locations are not convenient for you the other drop in sessions are listed on, otherwise there is an online event you can register for.

Ongoing works in Savernake Forest, by Forestry England



August 2023

Things are now in place for the contractors to resume working on Tuesday 29th August 2023 to remove ash trees growing along the A346 at the edge of Savernake Forest, which are suffering from chalara ash dieback. Traffic along the A346 will be managed by a single lane closure with two-way traffic signals operating 9.30am - 4.00pm Monday – Friday between Postern Hill and Leigh Hill (Wiltshire Council permit UK66601879988). There may be occasions when lights are double red for a short time to allow safe working. Road users should expect delays on the A346 during operating hours.

All ash trees showing more than 50% crown dieback within a tree length of the public highway will be felled or otherwise made safe e.g. pollarded and left standing. At the same time, we are removing some additional trees because they are growing close to veteran trees. This ‘haloing’ gives the veterans more light and space to remain healthy. The understorey of smaller trees and shrubs within five metres of the road will be coppiced to improve visibility along the road.

You are probably aware that this work falls during the bird nesting season. Felling these trees during the summer months is unavoidable in order to address the safety issue posed by chalara ash dieback next to the highway. Our ecologist has thoroughly surveyed the working area and will continue to be in close contact with the site team to minimise disturbance to wildlife. The challenges of timing forestry operations is explained on our website in this article.

Felling trees is an important part of sustainable forest management and well managed forests support more wildlife. Before we start any forestry work, we carry out thorough ecological surveys to check for species such as birds, mammals, rodents, invertebrates, flora, and fungi. We consider our findings against complex factors including tree health, how the ground slopes, soil condition, and likely rainfall when planning forestry work. Where it is safe, we will leave some standing dead trees to provide insect habitat and perches for birds, and we will leave as much dead wood on site as possible to support Savernake’s important dead wood habitat. Our forestry team will keep all machinery at least five metres away from all veteran trees. While working, we continue to check for wildlife and adapt, pause or suspend work if necessary.

There is more information about this work on our Website.

Nikki Morgans

Area Forester
Bristol and Savernake
Forestry England

+44 (0)777 5012033 (mobile)

Rural Crime Survey


August 2023

Police and Crime Commissioners from across the South West have teamed up to launch the Rural Crime Survey to ask rural residents if they have been the victim of any crimes in the last 12 months, as well as what rural crimes concern them the most.

In a rural county like Wiltshire, it is so important to keep on top of how Wiltshire Police is responding to and dealing with all forms of rural crime. A lot of work has gone into improving this as a police force and I included it in the priorities set out in my Police and Crime Plan.

I am keen to understand what improvements have been made since the National Rural Crime Network ran a similar survey in 2018, and what Wiltshire Police still need to put more resource into, as well as continuing to develop, and improve where necessary, Wiltshire Police’s response to all rural crimes.

P R Wilkinson OBE

Police and Crime Commissioner for Wiltshire and Swindon

13 people have died on the county's roads in 2023 so far


August 2023

You may already have seen some of the following press releases about Wiltshire Police's Road safety campaign launched following the death of 13 people on Wiltshire's roads so far this year due to the increased number of people killed or seriously injured on Wiltshire’s roads.

Find out more here and here.

Savernake Volunteer Group


August 2023

The Savernake Forest Volunteer group meets on the fourth Thursday of each month to carry out various woodland management tasks. This might include haloing beneath the ancient trees (clering competing vegetation to maintain tree health), surveying local fauna and flora, coppicing, pond clearance and other practical tasks.

If you would like to join the above group please got to Volunteering in Savernake Forestor contact Greg Kerr on 

Wiltshire and Swindon Community Messaging


August 2023

The Community Messaging service is a free service which will provide messages and alerts from your local Community Policing Team about policing and crime matters in your area.

To sign up for it please visit Some aspects of this system are as follows, from their website.

  • FREE messages and alerts from your local Community Policing Team about policing and crime matters in your area.
  • You can receive free messages by email, text or voicemail.
  • You can choose which organisations to receive messages from and the type of information you receive.
  • Currently messages are being sent by Wiltshire Police, Wiltshire Neighbourhood Watch, Dorset and Wiltshire Fire and Rescue Service, Action Fraud and Get Safe Online.
  • Regular newsletter messages are also now sent from Canal Watch, Church Watch, Dog Watch, Farm Watch and Horse Watch.
  • You can also join a Neighbourhood Watch scheme in your area or request to start a new scheme.
  • Community Messaging aims to improve the flow of information between communities and the local police and fire service.
  • You can reply directly to messages, for example from your local police officers with information to help them better police your area.
  • If you have a video doorbell or CCTV on your home or business premises please tick the box CCTV Operator/Owner. By doing so you may be able support an appeal for video coverage when a crime is being investigated or missing people are being looked for.

Forestry England update - February 2023

Savernake Forest


February 2023

An update from Becky Morris on behalf of Forestry England can be downloaded here.