Saturday, 29 November 2014

Marked dog fouling in Blossom Avenue and Crown Lane today after residents' complaints.

Marked dog fouling in Blossom Avenue and Crown Lane, #Theale, today after residents' complaints. The blue marking will help people avoid the fouling and may shame the dog's owners.

Friday, 28 November 2014

Site visit for planning application for 27 retirement homes behind Theale High Street Wed 3rd December

The Eastern Area Planning Committee will be making a site visit to the site behind 40 to 58 High Street at about 10:10 am on Wednesday 3rd December (the time is not exact because the committee will be visiting another site before this one).

The visit is for committee members to see the site, its location and its relationships to other buildings. There will be an opportunity for residents to point issues out.

The application will almost certainly be decided by the Committee at its meeting on 10th December. This will be held at the Calcot Centre in Highview (off Royal Avenue). The meeting will start at 6:30 p.m.

The application number is 14/02110/FULEXT and plans for the application can be viewed at (click on the Documents tab).

Alan Macro
Councillor for Theale
West Berkshire Council

Thursday, 27 November 2014

Theale Primary PTA Xmas Fayre Friday 5th December, 3:30pm

My letter about changed IKEA plans published in today's Reading Chronicle

Dear Editor,

I was interested in your story that IKEA will soon be submitting a planning application for a smaller, two-story, store in Calcot (Chronicle, 20th November). The previous plan was for a three-story store that was 60 feet high. This would have been clearly visible to many homes in Theale. I therefore hope that the latest plan will be for a store that is less visually intrusive.

There is much concern in Theale and Calcot over the traffic that will be attracted to an IKEA store and the congestion this may cause. I therefore hope that a smaller store will not be used as an excuse by IKEA for reducing their contribution towards road improvements.

Kind Regards,

Alan Macro
Councillor for Theale
West Berkshire Council

Saturday, 22 November 2014

#Theale Co-op closed from Monday for 9 days for refurbishment

Please remember that the Co-op in Theale will be closed from Monday (24th November) for refurbishment.

It is due to re-open on 4th December.

Alan Macro
Councillor for Theale

Friday, 21 November 2014

M4 J3-12 "Smart Motorway" project exhibition in Theale Village Hall

Visited the M4 J3-12 "Smart Motorway" project exhibition in Theale Village Hall.

A few of the interesting things I found out:
  • Lanes one (currently the hard shoulder) and four will be surfaced in noise-reducing asphalt throughout from J3 to west of J12. All lanes on the eastbound carriageway will be surfaced in this material from west of J12 through the junction. This will result in a small reduction in traffic noise affecting the Woodfield Way area. There are to be NO noise reduction fences near Theale, though.
  • No increase in air pollution caused by traffic is expected in Theale
  • There will still be three lanes through J12. There will be four lanes all the way from J12 to J10 and from J10 to J4B, making use of the current hard shoulder.
  • It is proposed to have just two Emergency Refuge Areas (laybys for emergency use) eastbound between J12 and J11 and three westbound.
  • Broken-down vehicles will be detected by a mixture of wire loops in the road and radar, triggering an automatic 40MPH speed limit and alerting monitoring officers in the control centre.
  • Work is expected to start from the Theale (J12) end in 2016 and then work eastwards.
Alan Macro
Councillor for Theale

Story published in Newbury Weekly News with my concerns about effect on Theale of nuclear submarine dismantling project

A story has been published in this week's Newbury Weekly News with a quote from me on the possible effects on Theale if AWE Aldermaston is selected for this project. You can read the story here.

The project is to dismantle unused British nuclear submarines (17 at the moment) and to store the resulting intermediate nuclear waste until at least the 2040s. The waste would have to be transported from the place where the submarines are dismantled to the site selected for storage. If AWE Aldermaston is selected, the waste may be transported along the Theale bypass.

Alan Macro
Councillor for Theale

Tuesday, 18 November 2014

Consultation on proposals for use of AWE sites for nuclear submarine dismantling project

The Atomic Weapons Establishment sites at Aldermaston and Burghfield are two of the sites being considered for the Submarine Dismantling Project (SDP). This project is to dismantle de-commissioned nuclear submarines. This may be for the long-term storage of the intermediate radioactive waste comprising the  components from reactors dismantled elsewhere. It may also include the dismantling itself. The waste would have to be stored until at least the 2040s.

There are currently 19 disused British nuclear submarines awaiting dismantling. 

More information on the SDP can be found at

Consultations events are being held in our area as follows:

Dates scheduled for public events near Aldermaston are:
  • Monday 17th November 2014                                    AWE Sports and Social Club
  • Saturday 22nd November                                           Community Centre Tadley
  • Friday 23rd January                                                    Community Centre Tadley

Dates scheduled for public events near Burghfield are:
  • Tuesday 18th November                                             Common Village Hall
  • Thursday 20th November                                            Community Sports Association
  • Thursday 22nd January                                               Community Sports Association

The Community Sports Association is what was previously known as the Civil Service Association and is near AWE Burghfield.

There are also a series of workshops where you can discuss the proposals. You will need to book a place using this booking form if you want to attend a workshop. You don't need to register for the exhibitions.

Alan Macro
Councillor for Theale
West Berkshire Council

Monday, 17 November 2014

Updated: Consultation exhibition at #Theale Village Hall for M4 J3-J12 Smart Motorway Project

An exhibition of the proposals for the son-called M4 Smart Motorway Project will be held in Theale Village hall on Friday 21st November between 2pm and 8pm. The exhibition is part of the consultation that the Highways Agency are carrying out on the scheme.

The proposed scheme will convert approximately 32 miles of the existing M4 from junction 3 (Hayes) to junction 12 (Theale) to a smart motorway.

The key changes that you will see on the M4 are:
• Hard shoulder will be permanently converted to a running lane
• Provision of emergency refuge areas
• Signs and signals providing information about speed limits, travel conditions and any lane closures
• The replacement and widening of some bridges

I you cannot attend the exhibition, you can see details of the scheme at

You can take part in the consultation by taking part in the on-line survey at

Alan Macro
Councillor for Theale
West Berkshire Council

Thursday, 13 November 2014

IKEA about to submit new planning application for a smaller store at Calcot, near Theale

I received a letter this morning saying that IKEA are about to put in a new planning application for their site in Pincents Lane, Calcot:

IKEA announced in August that they were now intending to build a smaller, two-storey, store rather than the three-storey store that they got planning permission for in 2012.

On the face of it, reducing the height should reduce its visual impact on Theale. What is not clear however, is whether IKEA expect fewer customer visits to the store. If there will be fewer customers, it should mean less traffic of course.

Alan Macro
Councillor for Theale
West Berkshire Council

Wednesday, 5 November 2014

Evening bus service between Reading and Theale

As an experiment, there is an evening bus service between Theale and Reading on weekdays and Saturdays. They terminate at the stop in The Green

Buses leave Reading Station at 21:00, 22:00 and 23:00 and return from The Green at 21:30, 22:30 and 23:30, calling at The Crown two minutes later. 

This service is an experiment and we will lose it if we don't use ir.

Alan Macro
Councillor for Theale

Sunday, 2 November 2014

Decision by #WestBerks Council on which sites to be allocated for housing delayed

West Berkshire Council consulted on almost 40 sites as its"preferred options" for housing over the summer. The sites consulted included four sites in Theale:

Potential housing sites consulted on for Theale

It was scheduled to make the final decision on the sites to be allocated, after taking account of the consultation, at a Council meeting in December.

However, there were so many responses to the consultation that the decision has now been delayed.

There were some 8,500 individual comments from about 4,500 people. About 18,500 separate "points" were made in those comments. Only about half of the comments have been initially processed so far and work on investigating the individual points has not yet started.

Therefore  residents will not know for some time which sites around Theale will be allocated for housing.

Alan Macro
Councillor for Theale

Disappointed that #WestBerks Council decisions on housing sites will be held behind closed doors

I am disappointed that decisions on which of the "preferred option" housing sites will be approved for allocation, including the four in Theale, will be made behind closed doors.

The decision on which sites should go to consultation was formally made by a meeting of West Berkshire Council in the early summer. However, this "rubber stamped" recommendations made by the Planning Policy Task Group, which meets in private and whose minutes are confidential. This meant that residents were not aware of the reasons why particular sites were selected.

I was not happy with this and proposed that the decision on which of the sites consulted on should be approved for allocation should be made by a Council committee in public. However, this proposal was voted down by Conservative councillors at a special meeting last Thursday.

This means that the discussions and decisions on the sites to be allocated will continue to be made behind closed doors.

Alan Macro
Councillor for Theale