Archive for the ‘General News’ Category

Woods Estate Agents, Bradley Stoke, Bristol

Nature reserve tunnelling work due to start soon

Posted on Sunday 23rd April 2017 at 9:38 pm by SH (Editor)

Plan of the site compound near the Three Brooks lake.

Work to construct a tunnel to carry a new sewer pipe under the M4 motorway is due to begin in Bradley Stoke’s Three Brooks Local Nature Reserve on Monday 24th April.

The work, which is expected to last for approximately six months, will involve setting up a fenced site compound on the triangular area of grass near the bridge over Hortham Brook where it flows into the ‘duck pond’. A six-metre deep shaft will be constructed in this location, from where a tunnel will be bored to accommodate the new 1.8m-diameter sewer pipe.

The tunnel will form part of a new 5km-long link between Frampton Cotterell and Bradley Stoke, completing the final link in the Frome Valley Relief Sewer which was begun in the 1990s.

A temporary footpath will be in place and access will be maintained at all times.

Heavy construction plant and machinery will also have access to carry out the work. This will be achieved via a temporary access point on Bradley Stoke Way, close to the bridge over Stoke Brook.

A Wessex Water spokesperson said:

“While we carry out the work we will take care to protect the natural habitats and environment of the local wildlife. Once our work is complete we will return the local nature reserve to the condition we found it.”

“We apologise in advance for any inconvenience this work may cause.”

Further information about the work can be found on the Wessex Water website at

More: Cross-sectional diagram of sewer tunnel route »

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South Gloucestershire honours unsung heroes

Posted on Friday 14th April 2017 at 9:10 am by SH (Editor)

Photo of some of the winners of the 2017 Chair’s Community Awards.

Volunteers from Bradley Stoke, Stoke Gifford and Filton among those honoured at annual awards ceremony.

Nearly thirty unsung heroes and their families attended the Chair’s Community Awards at South Gloucestershire and Stroud (SGS) College’s WISE Campus on Thursday 16th March.

The annual awards recognise and celebrate the valuable contribution local unpaid volunteers make to life in South Gloucestershire. These people give up their time freely to help others and bring our communities together, and were rewarded for their efforts at the special ceremony.

Chair of South Gloucestershire Council (SGC) Cllr Erica Williams attended, along with the Lord Lieutenant of Gloucestershire, Dame Janet Trotter, Vice Lord Lieutenant Robert Bernays, Group Chief Executive & Executive Principal of SGS College Kevin Hamblin and Principal and Deputy Chief of SGS College Sara-Jane Watkins.

Throughout the evening, award winners from across South Gloucestershire, and from a wide variety of backgrounds, were presented with their certificates by Cllr Williams and Sara-Jane Watkins. The final round was the Lord Lieutenant’s Special Award, which saw Dame Janet Trotter and Robert Bernays present £100 to Diya Barot and George Beaven for their valued services as mentors and anti-hate crime ambassadors in South Gloucestershire.

Cllr Williams said:

“I have been consistently amazed and inspired by the number of people from across our area who dedicate so much of their precious time in a voluntary capacity. These awards are a small way of recognising the effort and tireless service which volunteers provide for their local communities, and to say thank you to just some of them for continuing to make South Gloucestershire a great place to live and work.”

“Choosing from the nominations for this event has been a heart-warming and yet difficult task. All the nominees were clearly highly respected and admired for their commitment and hard work. It has been humbling to read all of the citations and I consider it to be one of the highlights of my role to be able to honour our award winners.”

The annual awards event is sponsored by SGS College. The evening also saw students from the Level 3 Musical Theatre Year 2 group, based at WISE campus of SGS College, perform some of their latest productions.

More: Photos and nominators’ citations for all the local winners »

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Birdwatchers’ anger as berry trees felled

Posted on Friday 14th April 2017 at 9:07 am by SH (Editor)

Birdwatchers taking photographs of waxwings in the car park of the Willow Brook Centre, Bradley Stoke, Bristol.

Bradley Stoke’s Willow Brook Centre has come under fire from birdwatching enthusiasts for chopping down around 20 rowan trees whose berries had attracted a flock of rare migrant waxwings over the winter months.

Just days after crowds of waxwing-seeking photographers in the shopping centre’s car park had made headlines in the Journal and been featured on BBC Radio Bristol, contractors at the site began felling the trees, resulting in a torrent of criticism on social media.

Birding enthusiasts noted that the centre management had previously welcomed their presence and praised their photos of the “beautiful birds”.

The Willow Brook Centre responded by saying that the rowan trees were being removed because they were in “poor condition”, with half their number having been removed two years ago and replaced with a species “more suited to poor drainage / little root space”.

In a more comprehensive statement published two days later on the Willow Brook Centre website, it was explained that tree surgeons called in to assess around a dozen rowan trees on the site had found them “dehydrated, undernourished and in a poor way”.

Centre manager Andy Wynn said:

“We fully appreciate it is a disappointment to cut down the trees, and therefore the habitat of these birds, however, given the condition of the rowans, we were left with no option but to remove them.”

More information and related links:

More: Birdwatchers’ reactions to the tree felling (on social media) »

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More leaders gain their ‘Wood Badge’ at 1st Bradley Stoke Scout Group

Posted on Thursday 30th March 2017 at 9:42 pm by SH (Editor)

Neil Raaff (left) and Richard Shepherd (right) being presented with Wood Badges by Clive Mason (Group Scout Leader, 1st Bradley Stoke).

By Clive Mason, Group Scout Leader, 1st Bradley Stoke.

On the morning of 8th September 1919, 19 men dressed in short pants and knee socks, their shirt-sleeves rolled up, assembled for the first Scoutmasters training camp at Gilwell Park. The camp was designed and guided by Baden-Powell. When finished, Baden-Powell gave each man a simple wooden bead from a necklace he had found in a Zulu chieftains deserted hut when on campaign in South Africa in 1888. The Scoutmasters training course was a great success and continued to be held year-after-year.

Wood Badge recipients now number more than 100,000 and can be found in all corners of the world. In the 1st Bradley Stoke Scout Group there are at currently 12 Wood Badge holders with many more leaders working towards completion. It can take up to three years to complete, but most leaders manage it in less than two. The three Assistant Group Scout Leaders hold two Wood Badges and the Group Scout Leader holds three! So it’s a good indicator of how highly experienced the leadership team is.

The Wood Badge is a Scouting programme and award for adults in the Scout associations around the world. The Wood Badge course is designed so that adult Scouters can learn, in as practical a way possible, the skills and methods of Scouting. On completion, participants are still awarded the beads to recognize the significant achievement in leadership and direct service to young people, and to welcome them to membership of 1st Gilwell Park Scout Group.

Although the programme has been modernised over the years, the essence of the original Wood Badge still remains. Adults use their new, and old, knowledge and skills to complete training which is designed to strengthen the individual and the Scouting they are providing to young people. Modules cover subjects as diverse as safeguarding, outdoor skills, inclusivity, first aid and leadership.

More: Four Bradley Stoke leaders honoured with Wood Badges »

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Grants available to help set up new community groups in Bradley Stoke

Posted on Wednesday 22nd March 2017 at 9:43 pm by SH (Editor)

Community Connectors.

Do you have some great ideas about a new group you’d like to set up in your local area?

Have you noticed that there is a need for a certain group that isn’t currently being filled, and you’d like to become involved in setting one up?

Would you like to set up a community group where you can share your skills and knowledge with others?

Community Connectors is an initiative run by Curo and funded by South Gloucestershire Council. It aims to support people in the local community, to connect with what’s going on and it encourages people to become involved in activities that are happening in their local area. Currently there is funding available of up to £200, to support new and existing community groups.

For more information about how to apply, please contact Sarah on 07967 344661 or email

Photo: Representative image provided by Curo.

This article originally appeared in the March 2017 issue of the Bradley Stoke Journal magazine (on page 36). The magazine is delivered FREE, EVERY MONTH, to 9,500 homes in Bradley Stoke, Little Stoke and Stoke Lodge. Phone 01454 300 400 to enquire about advertising or leaflet insertion.

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