Tuesday, 31 December 2013

Submitted 104 reports of problems in Theale to West Berks Council during 2013

I have submitted a total of 104  reports of problems in Theale to West Berkshire Council over the past year. Problems reported include:

  • Potholes. Some reports covered over 20 potholes in the same area of road
  • Streetlights not working
  • Fly-tipping
  • Litter
  • Full dog waste bins
  • Drainage problems
  • Fallen and dangerous trees
  • Problems on public footpaths

Alan Macro
Councillor for Theale
West Berkshire Council

Please see what is happening in Theale by:
Following me on Twitter: @alanmacro
Joining me on Facebook: Alan Macro
Reading my Blog: http://alanmacro.blogspot.com/
Subscribing to my Theale news list: send an email to addme@theale.org.uk

Sunday, 29 December 2013

This week's recycling collection in Theale will be on Tuesday 31st December

West Berkshire Council have now confirmed that:

Monday 30 December
 will be collected on
 Tuesday 31 January
on its website is incorrect. It should say, of course, "will be collected on Tuesday 31st December!

Saturday, 28 December 2013

Reported the many potholes in Theale High Street to West Berkshire Council

Reported the many potholes in the stretch of Theale High Street between Hoad Way and Woodfield Way to West Berkshire Council again!
Yes, that's grass growing in the pothole!

Friday, 27 December 2013

Bit of a maze in #Theale station car park

Car park layed out for bus replacement service.

Hangar Road, between Theale and Sheffield Bottom re-opened after closure due to flooding

Hangar Road, between Theale and Sheffield Bottom, has been re-opened. It was previously closed due to flooding. This is on the usual route between Theale and Burghfield.

Three houses off Station Road, Theale, were also flooded.

Tuesday, 24 December 2013

Called in proposal to widen A4 between Royal Ave and Langley Hill

West Berkshire Council is proposing to widen the A4 between Royal Avenue and Langley Hill, Calcot. Although they are proposing to widen it to four lanes in width, they are proposing that there will only be one lane eastbound (towards Reading). There would be two lanes westbound and one lane dedicated to right-turning traffic. Detains of the proposal can be found here.

I have "called in" the decision to be re-considered by the council's Overview and Scrutiny Commission for the following reasons.
  1. The proposal does not address the problem of eastbound congestion at peak times
  2. It does not address the problem caused by eastbound traffic generated by the proposed IKEA store at Calcot, particularly at store closing time
  3. The concerns of Tilehurst Parish Council are not addressed, either in the proposal or in the consultation responses.
The commission can decide to refer the decision back to the Executive Member for Highways and Transport  (who took the decision) with recommendations for changes, or can concur with the decision.

Friday, 20 December 2013

Theale Parish Council office Christmas closure

Theale Parish Council's office will be closed over the Christmas period. It will be closed from Monday 23rd December 2013, reopening on Thursday 2nd January 2014.

A member of the council will be checking the post during this period.

Wednesday, 18 December 2013

Reported two areas of potholes in Blossom Avenue, Theale, to West Berkshire Council

Reported the following two areas of potholes in Blossom Avenue, Theale, to West Berkshire Council:

Between the junctions with The Orchard and Blossom Lane (at least 13 potholes!)

Near the junction with Play Platt

Monday, 16 December 2013

Petition to improve safety for people crossing the A4 at Wigmore Lane Theale, accepted by West Berkshire Council

I presented the petition to West Berkshire Council at its meeting last Thursday evening. I have now received official confirmation that it has been accepted and referred to Highways Department officers.

The combination of the paper and on-line versions had a total of 40 signatures. Not bad, considering that there are only 19 houses in the lane!

Tuesday, 10 December 2013

Railway electrification switching station to be sited next to Theale Station

The following information has been received by the Planning Department at West Berkshire Council:

A switching station is proposed in the Theale area on operational railway land. The
proposed location is on land to the north of the BHL, east of Theale Station and adjacent to
Brunel Road. At present the final position of the site has not been agreed, but details will be
forwarded to the Council for their reference in due course

"BHL" is the Berks and Hants Line, the railway line through Theale.

This is one of four switching stations to be sited in West Berkshire. The others are at Pangbourne, Midgham (Woolhampton) and Newbury. 

Friday, 6 December 2013

Theale High St closed, buses diverted, after 3pm Saturday 7th December

Theale High Street will be closed from 3pm on Saturday 7th December. This is for preparations for the Christmas lights switch-on event starting at 5:30pm.

Buses will be diverted along Brunel Road and will call at temporary bus stops at the station. The other nearest stops are at Savacenter and Wignore Lane.

Thursday, 5 December 2013

Latest news re Lambfields sewage pumping station in Theale

I have been told by Thames Water that the reason for the tankering last weekend was that a pump had failed. They needed to reduce the water level in order to fix the pump.

A potential solution to the problems at the pumping station has been identified. Thames Water will be making a decision on that in January.

Tuesday, 3 December 2013

Petition to West Berkshire Council to improve safety for people crossing the A4 at Wigmore Lane Theale.

I have been collecting signatures for the following petition over the last few days:

We the undersigned ask West Berkshire Council to take measures to improve safety for people crossing the A4 road to get to and from Wigmore Lane, Theale.

Crossing the A4 at this point is dangerous because it is close to the A4/A340 roundabout, traffic is moving fast and visibility to the west is restricted by a bend.
People crossing the A4 at this point include:
  • Residents accessing shops and other facilities in Theale
  • Schoolchildren going to and from school
  • Residents and workers using the bus stop
  • Walkers using the public footpath at the end of the lane
Measures considered should include provision of a pedestrian refuge and a made-up path to and across the existing traffic island.

I have now set up an online version on the West Berkshire Council website

Please sign the on-line petition here

Reason for delay in starting improvements to Theale Station

The reason that no start has been made on the improvements at Theale Station is that First Great Western Trains have not yet signed off the contract. This is because they are still having discussions about finance. They are reported to be trying to progress these discussions as a matter of urgency and are "mindful of the delays to the project that have already occurred".

West Berkshire Council officers are meeting with FGW next week. Let's hope that there is better news then!

Monday, 2 December 2013

Chased Thames Water re problems at Lambfields sewage pumping station

The public meeting held in the spring to discuss the problems caused by tankering at this pumping station was told by Thames Water that an infiltration survey would be carried out. That survey was delayed by high ground water levels, but was eventually carried out in the early summer.

Tankering has now resumed at the station, with its attendant problems of noise and disturbance. I have therefore chased Thames Water to find out what results were produced by the survey and what measures they are planning to take to solve the problem.

Chased West Berks Council and First Great Western Trains re lack of progress on Theale Station improvements

The improvements to Theale Station, including lifts to the platforms and a new booking office, were supposed to start in November. I checked on Saturday and no work had started. I have therefore emailed West Berkshire Council and First Great Western Trains asking when work is due to start.

Sunday, 1 December 2013

Tankering at Lambfield Sewage Pumping Station Again

Tankers are pumping out the sewage pumping station at the corner of Lambfields and Church Street, Theale, again.

I spoke to one of the drivers, who said that he didn't know why they were pumping it out. However, he didn't think that it would go on all night.

Thursday, 28 November 2013

Theale residents invited to Christmas Fayre at Arlington Business Park Dec 4th 12-3pm

Received this invitation today:

 I thought you might be interested in the Christmas extravaganza at Arlington Business (Arlington Business Park, Theale, Reading, Berkshire RG7 4SA) Park on 4th December.  The event, which is open to all with see Father Christmas and his Reindeer joining more than 45 stall holders.  The event will see the Fayre being open to the local community and customers for the first time.  The day will include:
  •          Father Christmas and his reindeer;
  •          Gourmet food delights;
  •          Delicacies from the Yummy Cupcake Company, The Kitchen Mixer and Blossom Cakes;
  •          Italian delicacies from Delights of Italy, Brazilian cheese from Bolitas among other;
  •          Carol singers;
  •          Over 300 people from the local community;
  •          People from organisations at the park, including: KPMG, Hewlett Packard and Wrigley’s

Furthermore, Goodman, who owns, develops, and manages Arlington Business Park, will donate the stallholders’ entry fees to its chosen UK charity, Woodenspoon.  Woodenspoon help disadvantaged children live happier lives as well as harnessing the power of rugby to give children the chance to achieve the full potential.

I have also attached the Christmas flier for date and time information. If you would like any other information please don’t hesitate to contact me.

Kind Regards,

Jenna Rorison
Graduate Consultant

Strategic Communications
F T I Consulting
+44 (0)20 7269 7205 direct

Holborn Gate, 26 Southampton Buildings
London, WC2A 1PB

Tuesday, 26 November 2013

Theale Christmas Lights Event Saturday 7th December

Come along to this great Theale event on Saturday 7th December, starting at 5:30pm:

  • Christmas Lights switched on at 6pm by Father Christmas
  • Market Stalls in the High Street
  • Santa and helpers in their grotto in the John Cumber Hall (behind Croppers). Open from 5pm. Times bookable at the Grotto Booking Gazebo near the hall entrance
  • Nativity Play featuring local children, donkeys and sheep, in the courtyard of The Falcon. Performances at 6:30pm and 7:15pm
  • Carol Singing with the Holy Trinity Church Choir
  • Judging of the Best Christmas Decorated Shop Window Competition
  • Late opening of many High Street shops and businesses.

Tuesday, 19 November 2013

Public footpath between Woodfield Way and Theale High Street closed

Public footpath 5/2 has been closed by West Berkshire Council because of a dangerous tree. The path runs between Woodfield Way and Theale High Street, behind Alderfield Close and Rotherfield Close. The tree has split, presumably as a result of the recent high winds.

The affected part of the footpath (THEA/5/2) can be seen on this map.

Monday, 18 November 2013

Letter to local papers against proposed Tory cut of budget for Lollipop Ladies in West Berkshire

Dear Editor,
the Conservative administration at West Berkshire Council is proposing to abolish the budget for lollipop ladies. This means that they will be taking a great risk with the safety of primary school children going to and from school. This risk is being taken to save just £16,000 of the £3M cuts they are making.
They could save almost half (£7,500) of that by cutting the budget for sandwiches at internal meetings and training sessions. My Liberal Democrat councillor colleagues and I would be more than happy to forgo the sandwiches if it would help save the lollipop ladies.
Kind Regards,
Alan Macro
Chair, Liberal Democrat Group
West Berkshire Council

Sunday, 17 November 2013

Parking in Theale High Street suspended next Sunday (24th Nov)

Parking will be suspended in Theale High Street next Sunday (24th November). This is to allow road markings to be re-marked.

I was originally told that the suspension was to be today (17th November), but the council put the signs warning of the suspension up today.

Saturday, 16 November 2013

Door-to-door salesmen selling thermal coatings for walls and roofs in Theale

I saw a couple of young men with logos on their jackets and wearing ID tags calling on houses in Crown Lane today. I spoke to one and he told me that they were telling people about roof coatings and that residents in the area would be offered "free surveys" on Monday. He gave me one of his brochures.

The company is called Thermal Coatings. There is a report on the Office of Fair Trading website about action taken by Lanarkshire Trading Standards against a company of the same name for aggressive sales and for refusing to leave consumers' homes. If you experience this behaviour, tell the salesman that you know that their directors have given formal undertakings not to do this and that you will report them to West Berkshire and Wokingham Trading Standards if they persist.

Their brochure and website say that their coatings save energy, but they give no justification for that. Neither do they give any estimated savings. There is quite a lot of information suggesting that such coatings do nothing to reduce heat loss from a house. A National Association of Roofing Contractors press release warns consumers to view claims of energy saving with extreme caution.

Please remember that reputable companies selling products or services do not need to sell door-to-door. Customers go to them.

You can contact West Berkshire and Wokingham Trading Standards on 01635 519930 or by email at tsadvice@westberks.gov.uk

Friday, 15 November 2013

Church Street closed, buses diverted, this Sunday 17th Nov

Church Street will be closed for one day on Sunday 17th November. The closure is to allow the much-needed resurfacing of the zebra crossing outside the library and the entrance to Theale Green School.

Buses will be diverted along Brunel Road between 8:30 am and 3:30 pm and will not call at the stops in the High Street, Church Street or The Green. They will call at a temporary stop outside Theale station.

Tuesday, 12 November 2013

West Berkshire Council Rated 23rd out of 26 for Condition of Highways

West Berkshire Council has been rated 23rd out of 26 unitary councils for Condition of Highways in a national survey (there are 26 unitary authorities in England). Please see the full survey results

However, the council are proposing to reduce the money spent on road maintenance even further! Please see the council's highways budget cut proposal

Letter to press re proposed cut of West Berks Council Duke of Edinburgh Award funding

Dear Editor,
in May, 576 young people from West Berkshire received Duke of Edinburgh Awards (D of E). At the time, West Berkshire’s Executive Councillor for Culture was quoted as saying "It is not just the individual that benefits from the D of E experience. D of E participants’ voluntary work nationally is worth over £136,578.26 a year to local communities."
It is therefore both perverse and counter productive for West Berkshire Council to propose to cut its funding for the award entirely. Not only will local young people lose the opportunity to meet big challenges, but the community will lose out too.
Kind Regards,
Alan Macro
Councillor for Theale
West Berkshire Council

Monday, 11 November 2013

West Berkshire Council consulting on severe spending cuts over next two years

The Conservative-run West Berkshire Council is proposing severe budget cuts over the next two years. The cuts will hit vulnerable old and young people, road maintenance, road safety, public toilets, libraries and public transport (though the last three will not affect Theale).

A summary of the proposed cuts can be viewed here.

The council is consulting on the proposed cuts. More information on the cuts and information on how to respond to the consultation can be found here (links to the individual savings areas are at the bottom of the page).

Sunday, 10 November 2013

Church Street, Theale, closed for 1 day on Sunday 17th November

Church Street will be closed between the Primary School and Theale Green School for one day on Sunday 17th November.

This is to allow parts of the road to be resurfaced.

The closure will mean that buses will have to be diverted.

Friday, 8 November 2013

Sorry, no Theale High Street walk-about this Saturday (9th November)

One of my children is in hospital in London and is due to be discharged tomorrow morning. I will be picking her up from the hospital and will therefore unable to do my regular Saturday morning walk-about.

Wednesday, 6 November 2013

Buses due in Theale around 10am on Sunday diverted via Arlington Business Park and station

Theale High Street and Church Street will be closed for a short time this Sunday for the Remembrance Sunday parade.

The two bus services due to call in Theale around 10 am will be diverted via Arlington Business Park and the station and will therefore not stop in the High Street, Church Street or The Green

Thursday, 31 October 2013

Reported damaged keep left sign & bollards to West Berks Council

Reported the damaged keep left sign and bollards under the Station Road flyover to West Berkshire Council. This is at least the third time that I have reported damage to these bollards.

Tuesday, 29 October 2013

Theale Church Street temporary closure on 3rd November postponed

The temporary closure of Church Street has been postponed from 3rd November to, probably, 17th November.

This is so that the closure does not clash with the Station Road closure or Remembrance Sunday.

The closure was to allow parts to be resurfaced.

Damage to willow tree opposite Theale library

The willow tree on the green area opposite Theale library in Church Street was damaged by yesterday;s storms. A large bough came down and blocked the footway.

I noticed that another large branch had cracked and was likely to fall. I reported this to West Berkshire Council as I was concerned about the safety of pedestrians and of people waiting at the bus stop.

The council are going to pollard the tree. This will involve severely cutting the branches back. This will have a dramatic effect on the tree. However, willow trees recover quickly from pollarding, as can be seen with the willow at the corner of Meadow Way and Cavalier Close that was pollarded earlier this year.

Thursday, 24 October 2013

My response to the consultation on the A4 Calcot widening proposals:

I have submitted the following as my response to the consultation on the A4 Calcot widening proposals:

The opportunity should be taken to provide two lanes eastbound, at the expense of abolishing the westbound right turns. There is often congestion eastbound in both the morning and evening peaks.

I am concerned that removal of the pedestrian refuge at the signalised crossing will provide insufficient protection for parents and children crossing to access the Calcot infant and junior schools.

Information on the proposals can be found here, FAQs here and drawings here.

If you want to respond to the consultation, then please email your comments to a4calcot@westberks.gov.uk by the 25th of October.

Wednesday, 23 October 2013

Consultation on widening of A4 through Calcot extended until 1st November

West Berkshire Council is proposing to widen the A4 between the Royal Avenue roundabout and Langley Hill. The project is estimated to cost £2.9M and will being paid for from Government "Pinchpoint", developer contributions (including IKEA) and the council's Local Transport Plan grant.

The proposals would provide two lanes westbound with lane improvements eastbound. The eastbound carriageway would include a very long section of hatched-off road that would protect westbound right-turn lanes. This seems a wasted opportunity!

It is also proposed to remove the pedestrian refuge at the pedestrian crossing signals. This crossing is used by parents and children going to and from Calcot junior and infant schools. Removal of the refuge will leave crossing users in the centre of the road "protected" only by road hatchings.

Consultation on the proposals closes this Friday, November 1st

Information on the proposals can be found here, FAQs here and drawings here.

Comments on the proposals should be emailed to a4calcot@westberks.gov.uk by the November 1st

Tuesday, 22 October 2013

Fallen-down fence at end of Volunteer Road

I have reported this fence, at the entrance to the open space green area, to West Berkshire Council

Took action to get Station Road re-opened after roadworks

Station Road was closed between the flyover and the mini roundabout at the end of the slip road last weekend. This was to allow a gas connection to be laid across the road. It will be closed again for the same reason next weekend.

The road should have been re-opened at 5 pm on Sunday. I checked at 5:30 pm on Sunday evening and found that it had not been re-opened. I was concerned about the problems that would have been caused when people tried to get to work on Monday morning, particularly those catching trains. I therefore removed the cones and flattened the road closure signs, after checking that it was safe to do so.

I have asked West Berkshire Council to ensure that this does not happen again next weekend and instructions have been passed to the contractor.

Thursday, 17 October 2013

Station Road should be open overnight during traffic restrictions for resurfacing

I got a couple of complaints yesterday that the part of Station Road between Arrowhead Road and the canal bridge that was being re-surfaced had not been re-opened overnight. I checked and it was still closed at 7:45pm last night. I have checked with West Berkshire Council officers and my original information that the closures were only between 8am and 5pm was correct. The council will contact the contractor to make sure that the road is re-opened at 5pm each day. To re-iterate the restrictions are as follows:

The following traffic restrictions on parts of Station Road are scheduled as follows:

  • Temporary closure 8am to 5pm 15th October to 28th October: Arrowhead Road to canal bridge  
  • Temporary traffic lights October 29th to November 1st: Arrowhead Road to canal bridge
  • Temporary closure: Markham Centre to Arrowhead Road: Sundays 27th October and 3rd November.

Updated: Accident on A34 Northbound @ East Ilsley, Congestion in Surrounding Areas, Diversions via M4

Following updated information from West Berkshire Council:

Please be advised that an incident has occurred along the A34 around East IIsley. The A34 plan has been invoked and the HA called another multi agency telecon during which we established:
  • A34 Incident around East Ilsley
           Southbound carriageway has 1 lane running;
           Northbound carriageway  remains  blocked;
            All traffic turned around by police (rearward relief)
           One HGV and 3 broken-down cars remain obstructing the northbound at present
            The car transporter that crashed into the central reservation was successfully dragged off the crash barrier at 12.45
            Support crews are going to sweep the carriageway and assess IF resurfacing is necessary, as a preliminary to a decision on WHEN any resurfacing will take place 
·         Police are  continuing to route traffic onto M4 at Junction 13 to divert either via M4 westbound and A338 northbound or via M4 eastbound and A404 northbound to M40;
·       Other traffic impacts across the Newbury area including northbound traffic queues on A34 south of M4 Junction 13, A338 south of and through Wantage, B4009, old Oxford Road past Chieveley, and expected on B4000 in Wickham/Stockcross area (also linked to the M4 incident)
·      No welfare concerns at present  - police have checked the occupants of the three broken down cars remaining on the A34; 
  • Recovery vehicles and support vehicles on site to assist with removal of the car transporter, and assessment of road surface conditionsand crash barriers
  •  Use of VMS on the wider strategic network to inform drivers.

Thursday, 10 October 2013

Email address for repeat prescriptions from Theale Medical Centre has changed

The new email address for ordering repeat prescriptions from Theale Medical Centre is rccg.tmscripts@nhs.net

The address has changed because of the NHS reorganisation

Changed opening hours for West Berks Council's Calcot office in Sainsbury's

The Council's office at Sainsbury's in Calcot, will have new opening times for a few months.  From 21 October, it will open only on Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 9.30am to 4.30pm and on the second Saturday of each month from 9.30am to 12.30pm. 

Current opening times may be found here http://www.westberks.gov.uk/index.aspx?articleid=9213

More temporary closures of parts of Station Road, Theale

In addition to the temporary closures between Arrowhead Road and the canal bridge for resurfacing, the part between the underpass and the mini roundabout at the end of the bypass slip road will be closed between:

  • 8am Saturday 19th October and 5pm 20th October
  • 8am Saturday 26th October and 5pm 27th October
The alternative route from Theale will be via the High Street, Waterside Drive and Brunel Road.

These closures are fo installation of a gas main connection.

Wednesday, 9 October 2013

Parts of Station Road, Theale, to be temporarily closed for resurfacing

The following traffic restrictions on parts of Station Road are scheduled as follows:

  • Temporary closure 8am to 5pm 15th October to 28th October: Arrowhead Road to canal bridge  
  • Temporary traffic lights October 29th to November 1st: Arrowhead Road to canal bridge
  • Temporary closure: Markham Centre to Arrowhead Road: Sundays 27th October and 3rd November
This is to allow this part of Station Road to be resurfaced. Resurfacing of the part between the station and the Markham Centre has been postponed because Network Rail are planning to rebuild the bridge as part of the railway electrification work.

Monday, 7 October 2013

Monthly update from Thames Valley Police for Theale

The following is the latest addition of the monthly update from your Police Community Support Officer PCSO Olivia Davis C8612. Please note that the heating oil thefts were from the Village Hall.
Information about your area
Over the past couple of weeks we have experienced a small number of burglary non dwellings, i.e. sheds/garages. Please ensure that you have a secure lock on any external storage areas – sometimes a basic padlock will not be enough. If you are looking to increase security, I would recommend a Close Shackled Padlock. If you store any high value belongings in external storage, you should consider marking them so that they are identifiable, and should make a note of any serial numbers.
We have recently had a spate of oil/diesel thefts in the area at both the Parish Council area and the Industrial estate. If you see anything suspicious or believe an offence may have occurred please call 101. If you store oil on your premises, please be vigilant and take every precaution to safe guard it, such as using a lockable cap, or purchasing a ‘Watchman Alarm’ which sounds when the oil level is low.
Anti-social behaviour at the Parish Council office is on the decrease and we are still experiencing issues such as criminal damage and the use of Nitrous Oxide canisters. Please can all members of the public continue to be vigilant whenever in the area.
Autumn is now upon us, but please still take care if you are leaving windows open. Ensure your house is secure before going out, don’t allow yourself to become a target!
Thames Valley Police have taken a number of operational initiatives on the area to deter any criminal activity. The Neighbourhood Team can arrange to visit you to provide Crime Prevention Advice and offer a home security assessment. To book an appointment, please call 101 and ask to speak to one of the Theale Neighbourhood Team. The team have increased patrols in the area, but please remain vigilant to help us reduce crime.
Our ongoing appeal for information from members of the public is as important as ever as we continue to tackle the problems that affect you in our community. Please report any suspicious activity immediately to Thames Valley Police either on the non-emergency number 101, or if a crime is taking place please call 999.
Anti-Social Behaviour.
If you experience any anti-social behaviour, please call in any incidents on the 101 non-emergency number (or in the case of an emergency dial 999) so that we may attend and deal with the situation as necessary. We have experienced a substantial decrease in the amount of ASB committed so far this year compared with this time last year, and we are continually working to decrease this figure further.
Neighbourhood Watch, Theale Area.
Stats show that streets that run effective Neighbourhood Watch Schemes do in fact contribute to reducing local crime and I am keen to recruit more coordinators for the area. Please do register your interest at one of our door knocks detailed below with any of the officers and learn more about how you could become involved in the scheme. Alternatively call the 101 police non-emergency number and register your interest to myself. On average you will only be required to spend three hours a month running your street Watch.
Neighbourhood Action Group (NAG)
If you have any issues you would like to be discussed by the group or feel that you think should be a neighbourhood priority please email me atolivia.davis@thamesvalley.pnn.police.uk. If you are a resident of Theale or belong to a group or organisation that has a stake in either Neighbourhood’s and would like to become a NAG member to help with solving Neighbourhood problems please contact the above email address.
Neighbourhood Priorities
We are currently focusing on tackling anti-social behaviour and issues we are experiencing in the industrial area. The Neighbourhood Action Group will continue to review the priorities and other potential priorities can be considered. If you have specific concerns about crime or disorder in the Theale neighbourhood please email the address above.
Public Consultations
Public consultations (door knocks) are planned for Monday 7th October at 7pm on The Crescent. Members of the Neighbourhood Policing Team and partner agencies will be knocking on residents doors and it is an opportunity for you to tell us what issues you may have.

Contact us
If you want any advice or would like to contact the neighbourhood team you can call us on the new police non emergency number 101 but if your call is an emergency then dial 999.   You can also contact us via email:PangbourneandBurghfieldNHPT@thamesvalley.pnn.police.uk – please note this email address cannot be used to contact Thames Valley Police to report crimes or for any urgent matters.   If you have information about crime or Anti Social Behaviour in your area but you do not want to speak to the police, please call the Crimestoppers charity on 0800 555111.   To view information on your neighbourhood team you can visit the force website at: www.thamesvalley.police.uk
Crime Reduction Meetings
Friday 25th October: 4pm -8pm - In the foyer of Sainsburys, Savacentre
We will be at Sainsburys between the above times, if you are in the area or would particularly like some crime prevention advice come and meet your local Neighbourhood police team and get tips about crime reduction. This will include advice on general home security, vehicle security and property marking. We will also have top tips, leaflets and door stickers for the Halloween and Bonfire evenings coming up. Expect to see some surprise guests on the 25th October!!

Tuesday, 24 September 2013

Please remember the station improvements consultation event this Thursday (26th)

Please remember the station improvements consultation event at Theale Station between 4 p.m. and 8 p.m. this Thursday (26th).

The following poster will be displayed at the station and on the parish notice board:

Tuesday, 17 September 2013

Roadworks in Theale High Street about to start

I received the following alert from roadworks.org today:

18 September — 16 October
Delays possible Traffic control (multi-way signals)
Works location: Junction High Street/Hoad Way To Outside 59 High Street
Works description: Construct Approx 30m, 2way Pvc Duct From Existing F5 Chamber Ref:B1 Proposed F4 Chamber Ref:B2
Responsibility for works: Vodafone Group
Current status: Planned work about to start

Wednesday, 11 September 2013

Oil thefts from Theale Village Hall - question to Chief Constable

The Chief Constable of Thames Valley will be making a presentation and answering questions before the meeting of West Berkshire Council on 19th September. I have submitted the following question to her:

The village hall in Theale has recently suffered from a series of heating oil thefts. This is the second time in two years that such a series of oil thefts has occurred and this is threatening the financial viability of the hall. The initial theft in the recent series was witnessed. A description of suspects, and the description and registration number of suspect vehicle of an unusual colour, was given to the police over the phone. Police investigation of this second series of thefts has been hampered by:
  • The police officer who responded to the first theft being reluctant to take away evidence in his police vehicle. He also disputed the value of some of the evidence, contradicting advice from scene of crime officers given after last year’s thefts
  • A problem with crime reporting that led to a lack of continuity in investigating the thefts, despite the same modus operandi being used at the same premises within a few days. Each instance was investigated by a separate officer and  initially regarded as a separate crime
  • One of the instances being investigated by a recently recruited PCSO
  • No statement being taken
Could the chief constable please tell me what action has been taken to address the deficiencies in dealing with this crime, which was being investigated under the PCC’s rural crime initiative?

Saturday, 7 September 2013

Updated: Consultation event for Theale Station improvements

An event to consult on the plans for improving Theale Station will be held in the station car park on 26th September. The event will start at 4 pm and go on until 8 pm.

Plans for the proposed improvements will be on display in a large vehicle parked in the car park. The proposed improvements include:

  • A new footbridge server by lifts to make the station accessible to all
  • A new booking office
  • A retail/food unit

The timing of the event is to allow users of the station to view the proposals on their way home, when they will have more time.

Update 10th September: Finishing time corrected to be 8pm

Saturday, 31 August 2013

Shocked at the number of children and pedestrians injured outside Theale Schools

I got the following information from https://axainsurancezone.com/localroadsafetyindex/#.UiIOCZK7KAi by entering the postcode for Theale Church of England Primary School. I was shocked at the numbers, especially for child casualties, although other schools in West Berkshire were much worse. The data is for the five years 2006-11, so predate the road narrowings that I got built at the zebra crossing outside the primary school and in Englefield Road. That said, I believe that we need to look at ways of making these roads safer.

Child Casualties
Pedestrian Casualties
Cyclist Casualties
Theale Green
Theale C of E Primary

Wednesday, 21 August 2013

Enjoyed Tanzanite's 2nd birthday party in Theale yesterday

Tanzanite Day Care Services provide day care to people with physical disability, head injury, dementia, parkinson's, neurological conditions and for the elderly. 

They held a celebratory lunch yesterday celebrate two years of operation. They invited parish councillors, neighbourhead wardens and me along. I was delighted to attend and enjoyed chatting to clients and staff.

Tanzanite was formed to cater for people who could no longer attend West Berkshire Council's day centres because of centre closure and more stringent attendance criteria. They are based at the John Cumber Hall in Theale High Street.

If you know of anyone who could benefit from Tanzanite's services then please contact:

Kathryn on 01635 253 757 or 07799 701 309


Zeph on 0118 962 2498 or 07708 626 533

or email them on tdservice@live.com

Sunday, 18 August 2013

Updated: Asked West Berks Council to secure green space in Woodfield Way, Theale,

I have asked West Berkshire Council to put in security measures to help prevent travellers getting onto the green space in Woodfield Way again. I have suggested that the Countryside department take advice on this from the council’s Traveller Liaison Officer.

Update 21st August:

The council are going to put a lockable bollard in the access. However, they are going to leave the "knee rail" in place for now. This is because:

  1. A more substantial fence would be visually intrusive
  2. The area is classed as recreational and the police are therefore more likely to move travellers on under their powers (as they did last week)
  3. Travellers have only occupied the site once
  4. The site is not regarded as high risk because travellers realise they are likley to be moved on by the police

Friday, 16 August 2013

Church Street, Theale, closed 8am to 5pm on Sunday

The stretch of Church Street between the junctions with Englefield Road and Crown Lane will be closed between 08:00 and 17:00 on Sunday 18th August.

This is for the resurfacing work to be completed.

The buses will be diverted via Brunel Road and the bypass during the work. Buses will stop outside Theale Station.

The road has to be completely closed because machinery will need to occupy the full width of the road while the Englefield Road junction is being worked on.

Thursday, 15 August 2013

Updated: Travellers camped in Theale

I received several reports today that about six traveller caravans have camped on the green space half way along Woodfield Way in Theale.

I believe that the land involved is owned by West Berkshire Council. This means that the council can apply to the magistrates' court for an order for the travellers to move off the land. If it was private land, it would be down to the landowner to go to the civil courts.

The council has been informed and I will be lobbying them hard to apply to the magistrates' court as soon as possible. Unfortunately, they may not be able to do this until early next week (travellers often move onto land on a Thursday or Friday for this reason).

Update 9:30 pm

I have just been down to the site.The police are preparing to move the travellers off the land. They are waiting for a recovery truck to arrive.

They are also looking for the owner of a blue Astra parked just on the High Street side Woodfield Way road narrowing. They want to avoid the travellers using it as an excuse.by claiming it is obstructing their way.

Tuesday, 13 August 2013

Very sorry to see that Bill of Q-Tel, Theale, has died

There is a notice in Q-Tel's window to say that Bill died yesterday. The shop will be closed until 16th August.

Bill was always very friendly and helpful to everybody. He will be sorely missed.

He was one of the characters of the village and nothing was too much trouble.

Updated: Asked council to keep Church Street open while resurfacing completed

The resurfacing work on the stretch of Church Street between Englefield Road and Crown Lane has been done differently than originally planned. The plan was to plane off this section last Sunday (11th) and lay the new surface next Sunday (18th). However, the contractors have completed the resurfacing of the mini roundabout and the southern (red Lion) side of the road. They have not done any work on the rest of the northern (Crown) side of the road.

I have therefore asked the West Berkshire Highways department to keep  the re-surfaced half open when the rest of the work is done. This would avoid closing the road and mean that the buses did not have to be diverted. They have agreed do do the work under temporary traffic light control provided the work can be done safely.

Update 15th August

West Berks Council Highways have told me that they will have to close the road after all. Machinery will need to use the full width of the road when they are working on the Englefield Road junction.

Saturday, 10 August 2013

No buses serving Theale 11th and 18th August

Buses won't be stopping in Theale on Sundays 11th and 18th August. This is because part of Church Street will be closed for resurfacing.

Buses will be diverted via Brunel Road and will stop outside the station.

Monday, 5 August 2013

M4 Junction 12 slip road closures 12th to 20th August

West Berkshire Council have sent me the following communication for the Highways Agency:

M4 Junction 12 Reading Carriageway Maintenance Work

I am writing to inform you that the Highways Agency will be carrying out maintenance work to address surface defects on the slip roads at junction 12 (exit for Reading), and along a section of the eastbound carriageway near Theale.

For the safety of the workforce and to keep overall disruption to a minimum, work is scheduled to be carried out between 10pm and 6am (Monday to Friday), when traffic flows are at their lowest, as follows:

·         Monday 12 August for four nights – Resurfacing the eastbound exit slip road, and a stretch of lane 2 of the eastbound carriageway, between Malpas and junction 12. The slip road will be closed each night and there will be lane closures on the main M4 eastbound carriageway.
·         Friday 16 August for five nights – Resurfacing the eastbound entry slip road at junction 12. The slip road will be closed each night.
·         Friday 13 September for two nights – Resurfacing the westbound entry slip road at junction 12.  The slip road will be closed each night.

During the closures of the slip roads, clearly signed diversion routes will be in place either via junction 11 (for the westbound entry and eastbound exit slip roads) or junction 13 (for the eastbound entry slip road).

Please be aware that these works have been carefully programmed but may be postponed at short notice due to circumstances beyond our control (i.e. poor weather conditions or emergency works).

Advance warning of the closures will be displayed on black and yellow signs at the junction.

Friday, 2 August 2013

Updated: Road closure signs in Theale High Street are in wrong place

Signs went up at each end of Theale High Street on Wednesday saying the road will be closed on Sunday 11th and Sunday 18th August.

These signs are in the wrong place. The section of road affected is in Church Street between the junction with Englefield Road and the junction with Crown Lane. This part of the road will be re-surfaced on those dates.

I have informed West Berkshire Council, who will get the signs moved.

Update August 5th

The signs have been re-positioned to their correct positions at each end of the affected stretch of road.

Thursday, 1 August 2013

Part of Church Street, Theale, to be resurfaced 11th & 18th August

The section of Church Street between the Red Lion and Crown Lane is to be resurfaced ("machine patched") over the next few weeks. 

This section of road will be:

  • planed off on Sunday 11th August
  • resurfaced on Sunday 18th August
The section of road will be closed between 08:00 and 17:00 on these dates.

This work was originally scheduled to be done last year but was postponed twice because of bad weather and then again because part of the gas main replacement project (now cancelled) covered the same piece of road.

Advanced road closure sign have been but up at each end of the High Street. It looks like they have been put in the wrong place. I will check with the council.