SPAE - the Society for the Protection of Ascot & Environs, has issued a press release about the recent Government proposals.  In August the UK Government published proposals to overhaul the planning system with the aim of speeding up development and building more new homes.

Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick said “These once in a generation reforms will lay the foundations for a brighter future, providing more homes for young people & creating better quality neighbourhoods and homes across the country. We will cut red tape, but not standards, placing a higher regard on quality, design and the environment than before. Planning decisions will be simple & transparent, with local democracy at the heart of the process.”

Most of the attention has centred around the proposed streamlining of the planning process but also announced were new targets for new house building based on a different method of calculating the need. The government intends to set a target of 330,000 new homes to be built each year compared with the current target of 270,000. SPAE is concerned about the possible implications of this because developers currently fall well short of the current target. It is well known in corporate life that if performance to a specific metric is falling considerably short of target the last thing to do is to INCREASE the target and make it HARDER to achieve. We believe that one likely consequence will be for the undesirable feature of so called “landbanking” to increase – where developers sit on land that they have acquired in the hope of achieving higher prices further downstream.

The table below gives an illustration on our local area. This clearly shows that,  not only that the targets have been considerably increased, but RBWM and Bracknell Forest have failed to meet the current targets over the last five years by some margin.

Read more: SPAE Expresses Concern About Government Planning Proposals

Tackling environmental crimes in the Royal Borough

Specialist officers will be tackling littering, flytipping and other environmental offences as part of a crackdown to make the Royal Borough of Windsor & Maidenhead a cleaner and safer place to live, work and visit.

From Monday 5 October 2020, authorised officers from District Enforcement, a specialist environmental enforcement company, will be working under the direction of the Royal Borough of Windsor & Maidenhead, to deliver the enforcement service.

They will patrol the streets and public parks, including town centres and environmental hotspots, and will issue fixed penalty notices (FPNs) to anyone they observe committing, or have evidence of committing, an environmental crime.

A fixed penalty notice could be issued for offences such as dropping litter or cigarette waste. Enforcement action can be taken against offences such as flytipping and commercial waste offences.

Read more: Littering & Flytipping Tackled!

During the time that Sunningdale Village Hall has had to be closed to classes and activities  the opportunity was taken to do a number of essential repairs and improvements to the Hall.
A damp issue between the small and large hall has been dealt with and the walls replastered and painted. The large hall, entrance lobby, kitchen,  toilets and exterior front windows have
all been redecorated and the window furnishings replaced.
In addition the hall has  a new logo (see above) and have new email addresses. All booking enquiries should be directed to:
and any enquiries about marketing  :

Sunningdale Village Hall reopened to regular hirers on 1st September. To comply with the regulations required for the Hall to be Covid-19 secure a number of measures have been put in place:
• The Hall is being thoroughly cleaned each night and all class instructors will ensure that all regularly touched surfaces have been wiped down before their participants enter the Hall and again on leaving.
• Hand sanitizer dispensers have been put up by the entrance and exit to the hall along with a temperature check device.

Read more: New Improved Sunningdale Village Hall | Open Again & Covid Safe

ascot durning library

CLICK HERE to see Royal Borough's Consultation on Changing RBWM Library Opening Hours

The Ascot Durning Library (in upper Ascot High Street) SL5 7JF, 

The Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead are seeking your views on proposals to maintain a sustainable and resilient library service, which will continue to meet the needs of Royal Borough residents and library users while delivering essential savings for the Council.   However, they are proposing a reduction of 123 hours per week to opening hours across a range of libraries.

You can read the consultation document here  library_opening_hours_consultation


Closing date for the consultation is Monday 30th November 2020.


Read more: Ascot & Sunninghill Libraries | Public Consultation | Have Your Say!

Cumberland Lodge in Windsor Great Park |   Guests flock to open-air performance of ‘Conference of the Birds’ held on Saturday 12th September, the grounds of Cumberland Lodge in Windsor Great Park were awash with the vibrant sounds and colour of Conference of the Birds, a new song-cycle for singers, instrumentalists and dancers by Danyal Dhondy, presented by the charity Cantata Dramatica.

Tickets sold out in advance, with a waiting list, and by 4.30pm the lawn at the back of Cumberland Lodge was full of socially distanced groups enjoying picnics. The show started at 5.30pm, as the sun was starting to set and birds flying back to roost over the Great Park.

The open-air performance was a fundraiser for the charity at Cumberland Lodge, which specialises in bringing people together, in dialogue, to tackle social divisions and help build more peaceful, open and inclusive societies.

Conference of the Birds is a newly commissioned work, based on the 12th-century Persian poem of the same name, by the Sufi poet Farid ud-din Attar, ‘the Attar of Nishapur’. The music is inspired by Sufi mysticism and the improvisational styles of Indian classical music.

Read more: Guests Flock to Open-Air Performance of ‘Conference of the Birds’

Call for immediate action following waste collection issues | The Royal Borough of Windsor & Maidenhead is bitterly disappointed in the waste and recycling collections service provided by Serco and is calling for immediate action to be taken.

Senior council officers held talks with Serco’s senior management this week to make it clear that the level of service has been unacceptable, and a drastic improvement is required immediately.

Councillor David Coppinger, lead member for waste, planning and Maidenhead, said: “We are incredibly disappointed in the level of service that has been provided since the return of weekly collections and insist that urgent plans are put in place to complete the rounds more efficiently, as the delays are unacceptable for our residents.

“We’re committed to providing an effective weekly collection service to our residents and will work with Serco in their review the current routes and make adjustments so that these issues do not continue in the future but we do need them to make the changes to their business in order for this to be resolved.

Read more: New Bin Collections Unacceptable Says Royal Borough 


Thames Hospice is calling on all supporters to kick off the festive season in style by donning a Santa suit and taking part in their own Santa Dash on Sunday 6th December 2020. 

Berkshire’s longest running Santa Dash is one of the highlights in the Hospice’s fundraising calendar and raises significant funds each year to support local people who need urgent hospice care over the Christmas period.

In light of the coronavirus pandemic the Santa Dash is unable to take place in Swinley Forest this year. Instead the Hospice is inviting supporters  to ‘do it their way’ and take on their own local walking or running route, covering a distance of either 3k, 5k or 10k, whilst adhering to the UK Government’s social distancing guidelines.


Read more: Do it Your Way in the Thames Hospice Santa Dash


Photographs and information from ascot, cheapside, noth ascot, winkfield, windelsham, sunninghill and sunningdale.