Parish Bulletin December 2019

What’s in your Parish Bulletin this month?

  1. Mendip Parish Forum Events and Dates For 2020
  2. Loans Available
  3. Free Digital Workshop in Street
  4. New dates for Climate Emergency drop-ins
  5. Somerset Pollinator Action Plan
  6. Somerset VCSE State of the Sector Survey 2019
  7. Free Festive Parking in Mendip
  8. Christmas Waste Collections
  9. Christmas in Wells
  10. Market magic in Wells this Christmas Eve
  11. Shape Mendip Lottery
  12. Community Funding
  13. News from the Monitoring Officer
  14. Calendar of Meetings and Dates for your Diary

If you wish to submit an item for the Parish Council Information Bulletin, please email it to parishbulletin@mendip.gov.uk

Mendip Parish Forum Events and Dates

The Mendip Parish Forum is for clerks, chairs, elected members and community representatives from across Mendip. The forums are held quarterly in the Council Chamber at the Mendip District Council offices from 6:00pm with the main agenda items beginning at 6:30pm.

The last Parish Forum was held on the 12th September. The Leader, Ros Wyke gave a general update and hosted a questions and answers session. This will be a regular item at was Parish Forum.

The rest of the session was dedicated to "An introduction to Planning" training session delivered by Julie Reader-Sullivan and Rachel Tadman.

Thank you to all who attended. We look forward to seeing you at the meeting in January, for which agenda items are coming in fast and thick!

Next Forum date: 23rd January 2020


Wessex Resolutions CIC works in partnership with Mendip District Council to provide loans to homeowners, landlords, empty property owners and more, for a variety of purposes. If you need to make essential repairs to your home, have an empty property you’d like to turn back into a home, or are looking for help to secure your first home, find out more from their website (below).

Bulk buy fuel scheme

We know living without mains gas can be expensive. If you are a homeowner, private tenant or social tenant* in Mendip or elsewhere in Somerset, and rely on oil, Calor gas, LPG, wood or coal to heat your home, you could spread the cost of your bulk buy over six months with a loan from Wessex Resolutions. Contact us to apply before you purchase your fuel.

  • Loan Features
  • Borrow between £200 and £500
  • Up to 6-month repayment period
  • No early repayment charges
  • Flexibility to overpay £100 or more off your loan at any time
  • 0% interest and fee free.

(subject to eligibility. Social tenants not currently eligible to apply in Somerset)

Representative example

Representative 0% APR. 0% interest. Borrow £500 over 6 months and pay £83.33 per month. Total amount repayable £500. Missing payments could affect your credit rating and ability to obtain credit in the future. Loans are subject to status. This is a financial promotion approved by Wessex Resolutions CIC.

Wessex Resolutions Community Interest Company

01823 461099


You’re Invited to a Free Event – A Digital Workshop with Lloyds Bank & Google

Thursday 27th February 2020, 9am to 1pm

Crispin Hall, 83 High Street, Street, BA16 0EZ

Lloyds Banking Group in Partnership with Enterprise Mendip – Mendip District Council’s business support, growth and training initiative are proud to host an event centred on driving the digital adoption, skills and understanding of small businesses and charities across the UK. We would be delighted if you could join us for an interactive and collaborative session, where we will be looking to not only highlight the benefits of digital adoption, but also to provide digital skills via our partners at Google. These sessions will cover:

• Building Your Presence Online – This will assist in supporting new to digital organisations to build their

  • presence online

• Build a Digital Marketing Plan – Learn how to create and structure a digital marketing plan utilising the main

  • digital marketing channels

New dates for Climate Emergency drop-in events

The 'have your say' drop-ins will take place in each District Council area in January and February and is run by the Somerset Climate Action Network (SCAN) on behalf of Somerset's four District Councils and County Council.

These events were initially due to take place before Christmas but have been rescheduled for the New Year due to the Purdah and the General Election.

Open to residents, businesses, groups and anyone with an interest, the drop-ins will be a chance to discuss the initial thoughts of the five councils set out in a 'framework' document.

The events will be held on Saturdays, between 10am and 4pm at the following venues:

  • 18 January, Somerset West and Taunton. The Glassbox, Taunton Library, Paul Street, TA1 3XZ.
  • 8 February, Sedgemoor District Council. The Sedgemoor Room, Bridgwater House, King Square, Bridgwater, TA6 3AR.
  • 15 February, Mendip District Council. The Council Chamber, Mendip District Council Offices, Cannards Grave Road, Shepton Mallet, BA4 5BT.
  • 22 February, South Somerset District Council. Vicarage Street Methodist Church, Vicarage Street, Yeovil, BA20 1JB

Somerset Pollinator Action Plan

Somerset County Council, in partnership with Friends of the Earth and Somerset Wildlife Trust, has published a county-wide pollinator action plan – a scheme to help secure the future of pollinators in Somerset. In doing so, Somerset has been added to the ever growing list of counties upholding their responsibilities to comply with the National Pollinator Strategy, helping pollinating insects survive and thrive long into the future.

For more information, leaflets and the plan see below.

The importance of pollinators to Somerset cannot be overstated; in the UK alone there are over 1500 species of insect that pollinate our crops and wildflowers, including bees, butterflies, moths, flies, beetles and wasps. These species are integral to the functioning of our ecosystems; however, sadly these species are under threat.

The importance of pollinators to Somerset cannot be overstated; in the UK alone there are over 1500 species of insect that pollinate our crops and wildflowers, including bees, butterflies, moths, flies, beetles and wasps. These species are integral to the functioning of our ecosystems; however, sadly these species are under threat.

•50% of the UK’s bumblebee species are in decline; three of which have already gone extinct

•71% of the UK’s butterfly species show declines

•Two-thirds of moth species are in decline

•38% of Europe’s bee and hoverfly species are in decline

There is no single cause for the declines of pollinators, with declining population trends the accumulative result of habitat loss, climate change, disease and the use of pesticides, with neonicotinoids found to have particularly harmful effects.

Nationally, pollinators are estimated to contribute over £600 million per year to the UK economy through the pollination of commercial crops and if present declines continue, it is likely to cost an estimated £1.8 billion per year for the hand pollination of commercial plant species.

Somerset Voluntary,Community and Social Enterprise Survey

The Somerset Voluntary, Community and Social Enterprise survey which has been launched by Somerset VCSE in partnership with Spark Somerset.

It would be great if you could share this email with your community contacts, and if you are a member of a Somerset-based charity or community group, volunteer with one, or know someone who does, please encourage a member of the organising team to complete the survey. I want to reassure you that all details will be treated according to GDPR guidelines, all personal details and information related to a specific charity or group will remain confidential, and any data will be anonymised for the reporting of the findings. Many charities and groups found the findings from the last survey in 2016 really useful.

There is also the opportunity for charities and community groups to take part in focus groups or telephone interviews too, as this will help ensure a wide range of views are explored for the report.

And, here's the best bit, all completed questionnaires will be entered into a free prize draw for the chance to win £250 for their organisation !

Full details below.

Festive Free Parking in Mendip

Mendip shoppers, visitors and businesses are set to benefit from free parking in the run up to Christmas and on New Year's Day. Free car parking will be available in all counil-owned pay and display car parks during the holiday period.

Make the most of the free parking on:

  • Wednesday 18 December - Tuesday 24 December 2019
  • Wednesday 1 January 2020

Christmas Waste Collections

Somerset Waste Partnership have announced that festive waste collections will occur two days later after Christmas, including Friday collections on Sunday, and one day later after New Year. Full details of Christmas waste collection changes can be found below:

Christmas in Wells

Be sure to pencil in a visit to Wells on 14 and 21 December to experience an extended festive market with a twist.

The regular Wells Saturday Market will host additional stalls to create a festive atmosphere in the historic city. The extended seasonal market will be located through the Bishop's Eye on the Bishop's Palace Green.

The markets, organised by the Mendip Markets team, will feature seasonal stalls selling Christmas food and drink, gift ideas and seasonal fare providing something for everyone’s Christmas shopping list.

There will be over 130 stalls opening at 9am-4pm on the Saturday 14 and 21 December.

Stay up to date with the market by following the Facebook and Instagram pages at @WellsChristmasMarket.

Market magic in Wells this Christmas Eve

Wells Market rounds off a fantastic year with a Christmas Eve shopper's special!

Visitors will be delighted to discover that the final Wells Wednesday Market of the year is being brought forward a day, to Tuesday, 24th December.

The market will be open from 9am until 2pm in Market Place, Wells.

It's the perfect place to pitch-up and enjoy the festive atmosphere. Great for any last minute gift-gathering and delicious delights for your table too.

Free parking is available all day across council-owned car parks throughout Mendip on Christmas Eve, including wonderful Wells.

Come along, support your city and celebrate some market magic at this most marvellous time of the year.

The Wells Saturday Market is open as normal on the 28th December, but will be closed on 25th December and 1st January 2020.

Stay up-to-date with all the very latest market news by following us on Twitter, @Mendip_Markets and Instagram, @Mendip.Markets, or visit the webpage.

Sign up to the Shape Mendip Lottery

If you haven’t already, make sure you sign up to The Shape Mendip Lottery!

The Shape Mendip Lottery is a weekly online lottery created to support local causes in Mendip. Tickets are only £1 per week and 60% of your ticket price will go to local causes! To find out more about how it works, the causes you can support and how to sign-up, visit the website below.

Community Funding

Spark can support groups to get themselves ready to apply for funding; writing a constitution, getting any relevant policies and procedures in place and ensuring you have the right management structure.

We have a funding database to search for any new funding opportunities and for groups who need a bit more support we have recently employed a funding officer. For more information email Sharon.Hale@sparksomerset.org.uk.


Grants up to £2.5 million for UK based community-led projects that will have the greatest positive impact on climate change.

Application deadline: Wednesday 18 December 2019 for initial proposals.

Further information, including eligibility criteria and how to apply can be found on the National Lottery Community Fund website


Grants for all categories of UK registered charities for general charitable causes, but particularly for health and social welfare, the arts, education, animal welfare and sport.

Application deadline: none – applications may be made at any time.

Please note: the Trust does not maintain a website. Further information is, however, available on the Charity Commission website.

Applications should be made in writing at any time. The Trust meets regularly to review applications.

Contact details for the Trust are: Katie Woodward, The Thompson Family Charitable Trust, Hillsdown Court, 15 Totteridge Common, London N20 8LR, Tel: 01608 676789 or Email: roy.copus@btinternet.com


Grants for UK registered charities and charitable organisations for projects that focus on literacy and environmental sustainability in UK.

Application deadline: none – applications may be made at any time.

The J J Charitable Trust is part of the Sainsbury family of of charitable trusts, which has around 20 titles. Applications may be submitted at any time and must be made via the online application form available on the Sainsbury Family Charitable Trusts website


Grants between £1,000 and £5,000 for not-for-profit activity providers in England to purchase specialist equipment to enable more disabled people to become involved in physical activity and sport.

Application deadline: 5pm on Friday 20 December 2019.

Further information, together with guidance notes and an online application form can be found on the Sport England website


Grants up to c.£60,000 for registered charities in the UK working in the areas of the environment, improving life opportunities for specific groups, and heritage.

Application deadline: none – applications may be made at any time.

Further information about the Trust’s grant programmes and how to apply is available on its website


Grants up to £5,000 for UK registered charities for projects that support disabled and disadvantaged children aged 13 and under and their families.

Application deadline: none – applications may be made at any time.

Applications may be made at any time via the application form which is available to download on the Trust’s website


Grants up to £1,500 – including funding towards core costs - for UK registered charities supporting sick and disadvantaged people.

Application deadline: none – applications may be made at any time.

News from the Monitoring Officer

Standards Committee

The Standards Committee has an important role in seeking to ensure high standards of behaviour amongst Members of the District Council as well as Parishes.

Contact details below for:

Somerset Association of Local Councils

Society of Local Council Clerks

Calendar of meetings for 2019/20

Mendip District Council has prepared a calendar of its public meetings to be held in 2019/2020. Please contact committee_services@mendip.gov.uk if you wish to have a copy.

It should be noted that this calendar may be subject to change. However, any changes will be because of the timetable for Council business - it will not be possible to make changes to suit individuals.

A date for your diary –December

Full Council 16th December 2019 18:30pm Council Chamber, Mendip District Council Offices.

Contact details for the committee officers are as follows:

Claire Dicken: claire.dicken@mendip.gov.uk or 01749 341341


Created with images by Kieran White - "This shot was actually a test shot to get the exposure right for a portrait shoot I was starting, I took this without even looking through the viewfinder but I was so happy with it even though it was unintentionally a great shot." • Ross Sneddon - "Christmas in Edinburgh" • Emma Simpson - "Morning jog in the countryside" • chuttersnap - "untitled image"