The second Neighbourhood Development Plan meeting was held yesterday (Sunday, 27 April, 2014) in Tanworth Village Hall.  There were doubts about holding it then when it came to light that the centre of Tanworth was going to be closed to traffic all afternoon due to a parade.  However, the hall was bulging at the seams with just under 90 people fighting their way to the meeting.  Perhaps they were just looking for a quiet seat and a cuppa during the parade?  Not a bit of it!  The format was the same as the first meeting in Earlswood the previous Friday and the questions raised varied from heartfelt concerns for the area to technical questions on the application of the new planning powers.  Chairman, Dermot O’Brien, Tanworth Parish Council’s Chair of Planning thanked all the speakers and gave an effusive thanks to all the attendees for making it such a lively meeting.  The Chairman also mentioned that, because of the parade and the (now unfounded) anticipation of a poor turnout, it had been decided to add another meeting date and that parishioners that did not attend this meeting should be made aware of it and if any attendees had further questions on this meeting, they would be most welcome to join the next meeting.  The next meeting is at Tanworth Village Hall on Wednesday 30 April at 7.00 for refreshments with the meeting commencing at 7.30 and concluding at 9.00.  
Earlswood Wildlife Partnership
Contact us at: or on 07528 595444             Newsletter 16

Dormouse Survey
The dormouse survey tubes have now been installed on the south side of the wood in specific areas to maximise our chances of detecting dormice and the first survey check will be on Saturday 12th July.Special thanks to Hugh, John, Kate, Ken, Ron and Val for putting out the tubes.

clip_image004[3]Bird Boxes
We have now put up all the specialist bird boxes (which were partly funded by a donation from the Earlswood Fete Committee) around the lakes and as can be seen from these great photos by Tony Philp we already have some interest!
Thanks to all who helped install the boxes and especially to those from CRT for bringing their boat!

Bat Box Project
Several extra bat boxes have been made by members of the EWP and installed in the wood bringing the total number of boxes up to 100 which was our original target. Surveys will continue later in the year.

Birding for Beginners
Tony Philp will again be running a “Birding for Beginners” course aimed at the genuine novice who would like to learn more about the fascinating world of birds and bird watching. The course will cover basic elements such as equipment, field guides and field craft as well as identification of many local birds. This practical course will take place around the lakes on Saturday 10th May from 09:00 – 12:00. BOOKING IS ESSENTIAL as numbers are limited so contact us at or on 07528 595444 to book a place.
Binoculars can be provided if required - Thanks to Sherwood Optics for their support. The course is free but any donations on the day to EWP funds would be gratefully received. Stout footwear is recommended.

Events Diary

Sat 3rd May 7pm – Evening Chorus Walk, meet at Clowes Wood car park (Wood Lane) -  Donation £2

Sat 10th May 9:00 – 12:00 – “Birding for Beginners” – BOOKING ESSENTIAL – contact

Sat 17th May 10.30am – Wildflower Walk, meet at Clowes Wood car park (Wood Lane) - Donation £2

Fri 11th   July 11 am.  – Dragonfly Survey, meet at Engine House car park – (Near”Red Lion” pub – SP112744)

Sat 12th July 10 am – Dormouse Survey, Meet at Wood Lane car park – (Entrance to Clowes Wood - SP102744).

Thur 17th July – Bat Survey with Warwickshire Bat Group – (TBC)

Mon 8th Sept  8.15 pm to 9.30 pm.  – Bat Walk, meet at Engine House car park – (Near”Red Lion” pub – SP112744)

Mon 22nd Sept  7.15 pm to 9.30 pm - Bat Walk, meet at Engine House car park – (Near”Red Lion” pub – SP112744)

Please come along to any or all of the above events – The more the merrier!

Bob Roberts
(Membership Secretary)
The first in a series of 4 public meetings to discuss and assess the appetite for setting up a Neighbourhood Development Plan for the parish was held last Friday night – 25 April 2014.  The meeting took place in Earlswood Village Hall and was attended by 60 people.  Presentations were made by 2 Parish Councillors, followed by a session whereby attendees considered the implications of a number of potential planning outcomes that could result as a consequence of Stratford District Council's Core Strategy which is now in final draft and posted questions and comments as to their views on these points.  These comments will become the starting base for a new Neighbourhood Development Plan steering group if there is the appetite to undertake a Neighbourhood Development Plan.  The meeting concluded with a short presentation by a local developer who put the business perspective and the meeting then concluded with a question and answer session which was lively and covered a broad range of planning topics.  Protection of the Green Belt was dear to a large number of attendees’ hearts.  The meeting Chairman concluded by advising that undertaking a Neighbourhood Development Plan would take a lot of work and input from a good sized committee, probably numbering between 25 and 30, with people from all walks of life becoming involved.  A very good percentage of people left contact details in order to be kept up to date with developments and the Parish Council were encouraged by the number of people who expressed an interest in assisting in the preparation of a Neighbourhood Development Plan.  The meetings continue with the next on at Tanworth Village Hall on Sunday 27th April, followed by another two – one at Earlswood Village Hall and on at Tanworth Village Hall.  All details are on the Parish Council website as well as the two Residents’ Association websites.
Bob is the membership secretary for Earlswood Wildlife Partnership. He has kindly agreed to tell us a little bit more about EWP and his role within it. Bob is my first willing volunteer to provide editorial for my blog and for that I am extremely grateful. I have a hit list of people and organisations I would like to invite to be Guest Writers whether they will all be as willing as Bob I really don't know but I really do hope so. Some of the work our volunteers and organisations do for us in order to keep our environment and community ticking along often goes unrecognised by the wider community.

My thanks goes to Bob and everyone involved with Earlswood Wildlife Partnership for helping keep our Flora and Forna protected and safe for future generations to enjoy. Without further ado please welcome A Blog by Bob of Earlswood Wildlife Partnership

About Earlswood Wildlife Partnership

The Earlswood Wildlife Partnership (EWP) is a partnership between local residents, Warwickshire Wildlife Trust (WWT) and the Canal and River Trust (CRT) and evolved out of the Earlswood Lakes Partnership which had done sterling work in protecting and enhancing the local area since 1997. Warwickshire Wildlife Trust owns Clowes Wood and manages New Fallings coppice (on behalf of the Bourneville Village Trust) and Earlswood Moathouse (on behalf of the National Trust) and the lakes and feeders are managed by the Canal and River Trust.

The Aim of the EWP is “to enhance the biodiversity of Earlswood and its surrounding areas for wildlife and people now and in the future”.

The History Of EWP

An initial meeting was organised by Izumi Segawa (WWT Living Landscapes Officer), Ron Hill (Warden of Clowes Wood and one of the founder members of the WWT), Brenda Brown and other members of the Earlswood Lakes Partnership in 2009 in Earlswood village hall and it was here that Cheryl and I “signed up” and agreed to join the committee but it was in 2010 when Izumi managed to get grant funding from the Nineveh Trust that things really started to get going. The money from the Nineveh Trust allowed us to buy equipment such as bat detectors, moth traps, bat boxes and bird boxes as well as books.

Bobs Role within EWP

The steering committee of the EWP meets 3 or 4 times a year to decide on events and actions and as Membership Secretary it is my responsibility to keep members details up to date and to communicate with them through the newsletter. I also put up notices to inform the public of our events and activities. Tony Philp, one of our more active members and local bird expert, will be running another “Birding for Beginners” course in early May and has produced an information poster for the event so today I have been printing and laminating the posters ready to be put up later this week. Paul Wilkinson (CRT ecologist and bat expert) has also been in contact regarding a joint survey with the Warwickshire Bat Group so I have emailed a few people to check their availability and coordinate dates and times.

On Sundays I like to help out with the WWT volunteers in Clowes Wood. The work is varied depending on the season and involves tree and scrub management, path repairs, removal of invasive species such as Himalayan Balsam and in the autumn cutting the meadow with scythes….try that for a good upper body work-out!

Bobs decision to get involved and Volunteer

I must admit that my decision to get involved with the EWP was mostly selfish.  My interest in nature only really started when I moved to Earlswood in 2008 (I was amazed by the number of different bird species I saw in the back garden!) and my basic knowledge of the natural world was sadly lacking. By getting involved and being around “experts” I thought I could learn a few things and appreciate more of the natural beauty of the area…and I have not been disappointed. I enjoyed walking around Clowes Wood long before I moved to the area but it is even more enjoyable when you can tell Wood Anemone from Wood Sorrel and pick out Chiffchaffs and Blackcaps singing in the background.

If you would like to get involved or find out more 


by Clicking the link below

Earlswood Wildlife Partnership



Sat 3rd May 7pm – Evening Chorus Walk, meet at Clowes Woods car park (Wood Lane) Donation £2

Sat 17th May 10.30am – Wildflower Walk, meet at Clowes Woods car park (Wood Lane)
Donation £2
I have been informed that an additional meeting for the Neighbourhood Development Plan has been arranged for the following

Wednesday 30th April 2014 at Tanworth In Arden Village Hall.Starting at 7.00pm* for 7.30pm – 9.00pm
* arrive early for pre meeting refreshments 

The above meeting is in addition to 
Friday 25th April in Earlswood Village Hall
Starting at 7.00pm* for 7.30pm – 9.00pm.
Sunday 27th April in Tanworth in Arden Village Hall
Starting at 2.00pm* for 2.30pm – 4.00pm

Saturday 3rd May in Earlswood Village Hall
Starting at 9.30am* for 10.00am – 11.30pm

(weather permitting)
If the weather defeats us all we will try again on Monday 26 May 2014 (NOTE – THIS EVENT WILL NOT BE RUN ON BOTH DATES) 


To Date the Earlswood Lakes Fundraising Committee has:-
v  Organised and run two Summer fetes (sadly this is no longer financially viable)
v  Purchased a new piece of children’s play equipment for the park
v  Given cash donations to:-
o   Warwickshire and Northampton Air Ambulance
o   West Midlands Air Ambulance
o   Henley Community First Responders (who work throughout Earlswood)
o   Earlswood Wildlife Partnership
o   Swan Rescue
o   Earlswood and Forshaw Heath Resident’s Association
We are currently in the process of painting the existing children’s play equipment in the park; looking into funding a defibrillator for the local community and purchasing sound equipment for Earlswood Village Hall.

Well it appears to be Local Election time again. That! has come around so quickly. I really didn't think it was time for Tanworth In Arden ward to go to the poles again. I don't think I have miss read the SDC Website in fact when checking again. I realise that it is Peter Oakley from Earlswood (Conservative) whose seat is coming to the end of its term. Well it will be interesting to see who stands and for what party. Anyway details of the Local Elections can be found at Stratford District Website  There are 18 seats in the Stratford District to be contested and listed as follows.


The District Council is made up of 31 wards, each having one, two or three councillors, depending on the size. Each new Councillor is elected for a four year period. The table below shows when each ward within the Council will be holding an election:
Name of District WardNumber of Councillors
to retire in 2014
Aston Cantlow0
Bidford and Salford1
Burton Dassett0
Fenny Compton0
Long Compton1
Long Itchington1
Stockton and Napton0
Stratford Alveston1
Stratford Avenue and New Town1
Stratford Guild and Hathaway1
Stratford Mount Pleasant0
Vale of the Red Horse1
This little blog has been running for over four years now and whilst having a look around I found the first post I ever wrote, funnily enough its not view-able on the blog itself because I had in fact scheduled it to be posted automatically for March 2019.

What surprised me about my unpublished forgotten post  of just over 4 years ago is how clear I was about why I started blogging what I wanted to achieve. 

I can't believe I had forgotten about the post and continuously ignored the fact I had an unpublished post. (Careless of me I know)

However it was refreshing once I opened it to remind myself of its content I had a WTF! moment. 

Its rather strange that although I have been struggling with finding a purpose for my blog, I have unknowingly or subconsciously, until recently started to achieve what I originally set out to do. 

They say ignorance is bliss!  I had a personal goal to achieve, I had forgotten my own goal and got a little waylaid  by Twitter and some of the great people on it I got taken out of my little bubble and my little corner of the web and shown the power of Social Media and Hyper Local. 

I suppose more importantly I got shown there were people out there trying to achieve the same as myself in different ways.

I have decided the forgotten post remains in draft format for my motivation in scribbling away on a Hyper Local blog  for when I have one of those "why am I doing this" thoughts - Its there to remind me why ;-) 

LoL The Forgotten Post is Called " The Past,Present & Future"
Tanworth-in-Arden Annual Parish Assembly
Wednesday 7th May 2014
Tanworth Village Hall at Time: 7.30pm
Our guests this year will be:
Trainers from the West Midlands Ambulance Service who will be demonstrating how to use the defibrillators which will shortly be installed on the external walls of Tanworth and Earlswood Village Halls
 Please come and meet and put your questions to:
·       YOUR Parish Councillors
·       YOUR District & County Councillors
·       Representatives from many local organisations & groups.
Afterwards you are invited to stay and join us for a chat and enjoy some
complimentary wine and light refreshments.

Earlswood Lunch Club is held at Earlswood Village Hall every Wednesday between the hours of 12 and 2. Run by dedicated volunteers the lunch club provides an opportunity for folk to get together for a couple of hours a week, have a chin wag , catch up and most importantly have a cooked meal with a little glass of wine. Meals are cooked in Earlswood Village Hall making the most of the village halls new kitchen facilities and recently the allotments started supplying their surplus veggies which are put to good use. Meals cost between £4.00 and £4.50. The Lunch Club is great for those people who perhaps don't get out and about as much as the use to and a pick up and collection service is made available. Once again offered by volunteers. So if you would like to volunteer your services as a driver once in a while or know someone who may enjoy good company and lunch why not pass the word on. For more information contact Rachel   

Well I don't believe it I have actually reached the 500th post mark and lasted longer than the average blog albeit 2013 was a little bit quiet for me. Probably because I had so much going on. What is interesting is that for a long time the Police updates which I no longer get and the Olympic torch have been by far the most popular posts, Well that was until news of the potential TIA Neighbour Development Plan, which appears to have created substantial interest for such a small blog and no my own visits aren't counted. It has been an interesting 4 years and great to see that TIA RA and EFHRA are now both on line and sharing information. That actually may be another reason I was quiet in 2013 our Residents Associations having an on line presence saved me posting about their activities etc. What is surprising is now in 2nd place for interest on the blog is Earlswood Wildlife Partnership. Their news letters are always read and visited and by far receive the most consistent interest. Without the following help from various freely available software/application providers. I wouldn't have the blog I have so I decided to share it all with you. The following are my favourites and been tried and tested however there is so much more out there.

All the FREE Stuff I use


I am really pleased! at long last I have found a calendar easy to keep up to date and do everything I want it to do with some great tools included which include automatically being able to schedule tweet reminders, this stops me from forgetting to tweet and remind people of events. It also includes being able to schedule repeat events and is quite comprehensive in that area. It has a search facility for end users, It is printable. It has the ability to put events into a group ie Parish Council Event, Earlswood Wildlife Partnership event which allows users to hide events they aren't interested in. It allows me to embedd the calendar in the blog, which I have chosen not to do. It also allows me to send the calendar to an email list (useful if I had one) and on top of all that it has an RSS Feed and the ability for users to download events into their own calendars and because I have at long last found what I need to do the job I will share this Free majgc tool with you it is called

Storing Documents

The other thing I have found that is really useful is somewhere to store documents external to the blog but accessible to readers and visitors I also really like this tool and will share it with you I have used it for the NDP docs and love its simplicity. Once again I can choose to embed the files in the blog or share with a distribution list but I have chosen to link directly to it. It saves space and speed on the blog for those that not interested in reading material.

Blogger Templates

I am also really chuffed with this particular template, the one irritating thing I haven't mastered yet is getting the post pictures to link straight to the post without moving if clicked on. However the huge variety of templates free to use and adapt if you wish at is incredible.

Stat Counter

The stat counter I use to see what is Hot and What is not is something I haven't changed or experimented with. Just because it has always done the job I need it to. Yes I have to reset it every few weeks due to its free nature but it really does give me an insight

Social Media

Of course there is Twitter that I use to spread the word  I have to admit however hard I try I just can't get on with Facebook but talking of facebook and twitter. I do use two tools to post and haven't quite worked out what is best. Buffer has some great analytical tools and allows me to schedule 10 tweets a day it shows me if they have been clicked on, retweeted basically what is popular. I also like Hootsuit but for different reasons it allows me to see what is happening all in one place but doesn't in the free version have the stats that buffer does.

Training and Showing

And here is one I haven't used on the blog but do use in other areas of my life for training this tool is brilliant it is called Screen O Matic  Basically it is able to film your movements on a PC so using it as a training tools showing people how to do something instead of lengthy written instructions. It also allows you to narrate. It has been a true friend especially whilst training people remotely.

Collecting Opinion and Surveys

Something else I use outside of the blog and in my day to day work life. This is also another powerful tool for all those wanting to do a survey and collect stats. Survey monkey has it limitations as a free tool but plenty big enough for a small community
You will need your speakers or headphones plugged in and the sound enabled in order to listen to the announcement on the link below. You will be taken to  sound player. 

All you will need to do is click the on the picture below and then hit the play button. Enjoy the voice of TIA PC :-)

 Click and Listen