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Agenda Pack (information) for Town Council meeting 7.9.20

Agenda Item 8a) Request from Sarum West Primary Care Network for temporary (portacabin) Hot Clinic to be locatd in Salisbury Street Car Park until end May 2021






Sarum West Primary Care Network (PCN) consists of General Practices to the West of Salisbury.  It includes:

  • Courtyard Surgery
  • Mere Surgery
  • Tisbury Surgery
  • Hindon Surgery
  • The Orchard Partnership (Wilton, Fovant, Cherry Orchard Surgery Codford, Shrewton)
  • Silton Surgery
  • Sixpenny Handley Practice (Sixpenny Handley, Broadchalke)


During to COVID pandemic, groups of practices have been encouraged to work together to minimise the risk of COVID patients passing on the virus within their own surgeries.

Up until now, Mere Surgery has used rooms within its building to provide a secure place away from the rest of the surgery, to see patients with possible infection.  They have shared this facility with 3 other practices in the group: Tisbury, Hindon and Silton.  However, now that we know that the pandemic is not going to be over soon, it is not possible for them to sustain losing clinical space on an ongoing basis.

There is widely expected to be a second wave of infection during the autumn/winter of 2020/21.  This is likely to be the peak influenza season and also when the usual coughs, colds and chest infection incidence is also at its peak.  It is likely to be very difficult to differentiate these patients in order to prevent cross infection, if they attend their usual surgery premises.  The Government, our Clinical Commissioning Group and the Wessex Local Medical Committee all agree that this scenario is very likely.



The PCN would like to use external facilities, separate from any of the member practices for the period September 2020 to May 2021. This could be sited alongside Mere Surgery building, where the Breast Screening Clinic is hosted.

The practices that will use the facility are those who currently use the Hot Clinic – that is Mere Surgery, Tisbury, Silton and Hindon.  It is expected that patients from Courtyard Surgery, Sixpenny Handley Practice and the Orchard Partnership, will continue to see their own patients, or join with other practices more locally, to share facilities.


The process is still under consideration by the group, but is likely to be:

  1. Those patients who are suspected as having COVID will be sent for testing immediately and told to self-isolate.
  2. Patients who can be managed at home, without the need to be seen by a GP, will be given equipment to monitor themselves at home with daily follow-up by telephone from a GP.
  3. Any positive COVID patients, will be monitored at home and visited there if necessary. If, even with home monitoring and care at home, they deteriorate, GPs will consider sending them to hospital.
  4. Any patients who are not thought to have COVID, but who after having been triaged by a GP, need a face to face consultation, would be asked to come to the Hot Clinic facility. They would be booked into a face to face appointment with a GP at the hub. At the facility there will be a patient toilet and two consulting rooms. Patients will be given clear information about what to do and what not to do.  They will be told to stay in their cars, until called by the GP, to use the patients’ toilet on site and leave immediately after the consultation.
  5. The clinics would probably be held in the afternoons.
  6. Rough estimates, based on last year’s figures of consultations for the types of infection that might need to be seen, eg tonsillitis, upper respiratory tract infections, influenza with other complications etc, would mean that an afternoon clinic of 2 – 3 hours would be sufficient: this would equate to about 80 patients a month.


This will:

  • Allow all practices to direct patients with infective symptoms – influenza, colds, coughs or other respiratory infections to a place where the risk of infecting other patients is minimal
  • Allow practices to keep their usual surgery premises working at maximum capacity for non-infective patients, ensuring the smallest risk of cross infection
  • Allow patients to be seen in the safest place, as being smaller the facility will be easier to decontaminate in between patients
  • Release room capacity back to Mere surgery for routine work
  • Release room capacity back to other member practices, who have currently put ‘Hot’ rooms in place in their practices, to see possible infective patients


A survey of the site has shown that:

  • the 8 parking spaces immediately to the left-hand side of the building, abutting the side wall of the surgery, would allow for a facility as shown overleaf. This position is where the breast screening unit usually stays.
  • the facility would be able to use the Wi-fi connection at the surgery so that patient notes from whichever practice they belong to, would be available to the staff working at the hub
  • external power and drainage are easily available, reducing the cost of the project for the local health economy.
  • parking would be available immediately outside the hub, meaning that patients would be taken directly into the hub on arrival, limiting the amount of time they are in the vicinity
  • a patient toilet included in the design, means that the public toilets in the car park would not be used by patients.


We are confident as we can be with the current knowledge about COVID, that we can ensure the least possible risk of infection to other car park users by using this site.  Indeed, it will improve the safety of patients using Mere Surgery considerably, by having this external hub for consulting with patients already deemed to be needing a face to face consultation.



We hope that the Town Council feel able to support this beneficial new facility, given the information above.


We are happy to answer any questions before your next meeting on September 7th, should that be helpful.



Hilary Jenkins                                                  Dr Fiona Dawe

(Project Manager, Sarum West PCN)              (Clinical Director, Sarum West PCN)


Agenda Item 7b) – To consider draft Procurement Policy




Legal context


In the context of local councils, “procurement” is the process by which they award contracts to third parties (frequently individuals or companies) to provide goods, services or to undertake works.  A procurement process is designed to source the most suitable contractors based on factors such as cost and their knowledge, experience, quality, capability, and financial standing.


A procurement exercise by a local council is subject to the requirement in s.135 of the Local Government Act 1972 (“the 1972 Act”) and the Public Contracts Regulations 2015 (“the 2015 regulations”).  These legal requirements are summarised in the table below.


Contract value (net of VAT) Legal requirements Legal requirements Legal requirements
The Council’s standing orders required by s.135 of the 1972 Act (and financial regulations) The Contract Finder website and other light touch rules in the 2015 Regulations Complex requirements in the 2015 Regulations
Low value contracts (in England only, this means up to £25,000) ü X X
All contracts over £25,000 but below the threshold below (England only) ü ü X
Public service or supply contract over £189,330 or public works contract over £4,733,252

(current EU procurement thresholds)


Use of the Contract Finder website (see paragraph 12 to 17 below)


Follow most complex procedure (see paragraphs 18 to 22)


This policy aims to give effect to and comply with Section 135 of the Local Government Act 1972 and the Public Contracts Regulations 2015. The Council is guided by the National Association of Local Councils Legal Topic Note 87 (January 2016)


The purpose of this policy The purpose of this policy is to provide guidance on the factors that will be taken into account when purchasing goods and services. The Council follows the NALC’s Procurement Toolkit published in April 2015 and its own internal financial regulations and standing orders.


  1. Introduction


1.1. Every Contract by the Council or person acting on its behalf shall comply with this Procurement Policy, the Town Council’s Standing Orders and Financial Regulations. These regulations cover, amongst other things: the number of quotations to be sought and the tendering procedures


1.2. The purpose of this policy is to provide guidance on the factors that will be taken into account when purchasing goods and services.


1.3. A Contract is an agreement between the Council and an individual or organisation for the individual or organisation to provide works, goods or services (including the engagement of consultants) for which the Council will provide consideration. The following contracts are exempt from the requirements of these rules: contracts relating solely to disposal or acquisition of land; employment contracts and individual agency contracts for the provision of temporary staff.


1.4. Persons involved in the awarding of a Contract on behalf of the Council must ensure that the best value for money is obtained. Before commencing a procurement, it is essential that the authorised person leading the procurement has identified the need and fully assessed the options for meeting those needs. The best use of purchasing power shall be sought by aggregating purchases wherever possible.


1.5. Exceptions from any of the following provisions of these Contract Procurement Rules may be made under the direction of the Council where they are satisfied that the exception is justified in special circumstances. Every exception and reason therefore shall be recorded.


  1. Local contractors preferred


2.1. The Council recognises the benefits to the economy of using local businesses and will seek out local contractors and suppliers wherever possible, subject to Para 12 below.


  1. Competence of contractors and due diligence


3.1. The Council shall only enter into a contract with a supplier if it is satisfied as to the supplier’s suitability, eligibility, financial standing and technical capacity to undertake the contract by carrying out appropriate due diligence.


3.2. All contractors and suppliers working on Council sites will be required to comply with the Council’s Health & Safety policy and any rules specific to the site of operation, for example Cemetery Regulations. Provision of suitable risk assessments and method statements will be a condition of all such contractors.


3.3. The Council requires all contractors working on Council sites and projects to maintain adequate insurance, including but not limited to Public Liability insurance for £10 million.


  1. Equality and sustainability

4.1. The Council recognises the importance of sustainability and will take into account the environmental, social and economic impacts of its purchasing decisions.


4.2. The Council recognises its duty to protect biodiversity under Section 40 of the Natural Environment and Rural Communities (NERC) Act 2006. To meet this duty the Council will wherever possible purchase products that protect biodiversity, for example peat-free compost.


4.3. The Council will, wherever possible, purchase goods that meet international Fairtrade standards (or similar).


  1. Prompt payment of invoices


5.1. The Council understands the importance of paying suppliers promptly and will wherever possible settle accounts within a maximum of 30 days, or earlier, by agreement. In order to comply with current legislation all payments (apart from petty cash payments) are made by BACS transfer or cheque.


  1. Pre-approval of contractors


6.1. In respect of contracts that may be exempt from the Public Contracts Regulations 2015[1] , the Council needs to have access to pre-approved contractors to supply routine services or who can be called on to provide emergency services, including but not limited to:

  1. a) Electricians
  2. b) Plumbers
  3. c) General builders
  4. d) Glaziers
  5. e) Grass and hedge cutting contractors
  6. f) Grave diggers
  7. g) Groundworkers
  8. h) Locksmiths
  9. i) Plant hirers
  10. j) Play equipment repairers
  11. k) Plumbing and heating engineers
  12. l) Tree surgeons
  13. m) vehicle and machinery service engineers
  14. n) sign makers
  15. o) fuel and oil suppliers


6.2. Contractors wishing to be included on the Council’s register of approved contractors will be required to complete a registration form (See Appendix A).


6.3. The register of approved contractors will be reviewed periodically.


  1. Best value & Local Rules


7.1. Normally the Council will accept the quotation, estimate or tender that provides best value for money, however, the Council is not obliged to accept the lowest of any tender, quotation or estimate, but must give valid reasons for not doing so.   “Best Value” will be defined as a balance of price, quality of product and supplier services.


7.2 The Council will operate a transparent procurement process in accordance with its Financial Regulations and Standing Orders for Contracts.


7.3  The Council will purchase locally wherever possible and where best value can be satisfied.


7.4  In evaluating “best value”, the past record of the supplier will be taken into account.


  1. Purchases on account


8.1. The Council maintains monthly accounts with suppliers of regular purchases. All purchases on Council accounts may only be made by authorised Council officers who must be provided with a receipt.


  1. Specifications


9.1. Enquiries and invitations to Tender shall be based on a written specification. The specification shall adequately describe the requirement procedure in sufficient detail to enable effective procurement in accordance with these rules.


  1. Contracts below £5,000


10.1. While not obliged to seek competitive tenders for works below £5,000, where there are opportunities for competitive savings, 2 quotations shall be sought (subject to Para 7 above).


  1. Contracts between £5,000 and £25,000


11.1. Written quotations must be sought by not less than three individuals or organisations that could undertake the contract.


  1. Contracts above £25,000


12.1 A public notice must be made setting out particulars of the contract and inviting persons interested to apply, within a period of not less than 10 days, for opportunity to tender.


12.2. After the expiration of the period specified in the public notice, invitations to Tender shall be sent to not less than four individuals or organisations that could undertake the contract (or, if fewer than four apply, to those that are suitable)


12.3. Tenders to be submitted and opened in accordance with Para 14 below.


12.4. Contract Procedure Rules 8 and 9 shall not apply to the following but wherever possible, alternative quotations shall be obtained:

  1. a) Purchase by auction or at public fairs
  2. b) Contracts involving special technical, scientific or artistic knowledge
  3. c) Contracts comprising spare or replacement parts of existing machinery or plant or repairs to such machinery or plant
  4. d) Urgent situations as agreed with the Chairman of the Council where the Council is put at significant risk or significant costs could be incurred by not taking urgent remedial action.


12.5. Every written contract shall specify:

  1. a) The work, materials, matters or things to be furnished, had or done:
  2. b) The price to be paid, with a statement of discounts or other deductions (if any); and
  3. c) The time or times within which the contract is to be performed.


12.6. Every contract which exceeds £25,000 and is either for the execution of work or the supply of goods or materials shall provide for payment of liquidated damages by the contractor in case the terms of the contract are not performed.


12.7. Contracts over the value of £25,000 shall comply with Articles 109 to 114 of the Public Contracts Regulations 2015 as explained in NALC Legal Topic Note 87 regarding the advertising of contracts and the use of the ‘contract finder’ website.


  1. Submissions of Tenders: submission procedures for contracts above £25,000.


13.1. Where an invitation to tender is made, such invitation to tender shall state the general nature of the intended contract and the Responsible Financial Officer shall obtain the necessary technical assistance to prepare a specification in appropriate cases. The invitations shall in addition state that tenders must be addressed to the Responsible Financial Officer in the ordinary course of post. Each tendering firm shall be supplied with a specifically marked envelope in which the tender is to be sealed and remain sealed until the prescribed dates for opening tenders for the contract.


13.2. The tenders shall be kept in the custody of the appropriate nominated person until the time and date specified for their opening.


13.3. Tenders shall be opened by the Responsible Financial Officer in the presence of at least one councillor. Tenders shall be date stamped and signed on all pages containing price information.


13.4. Quotations and tenders may be received electronically provided they are kept in a separate secure folder under the control of the Responsible Financial Officer which is not to be opened until the deadline has passed for receipt of tenders.


  1. Acceptance of Quotations and Tenders


14.1. The tender that offers best value to the Council shall be accepted. Each tender shall be evaluated for the price and quality to ascertain the most economically advantageous tender. Local companies should be encouraged to apply.


14.2. For procurements over £25,000 the questions and scoring systems used shall be written before tenders are received. The basis of this exercise shall be explained in any invitation to tender documentation.


14.3. Where the authorised person considers it in the best interest of the Council he/she may negotiate with the tenderers whose tenders are being considered for acceptance. No negotiation on contracts whose value is in excess of £25,000 can take place without reference to the Chairman of the Council. Any negotiations which would distort competition is expressly forbidden.


14.4. Arithmetical errors found in any tender when checking shall be dealt with as follows: the tenderer shall have the error pointed out to them and be offered the opportunity to stand by their original tender, or their corrected tender, or withdraw it.


  1. Signing and Sealing of Contracts


15.1. Every successful quotation/tender shall be accepted in writing, provided that contracts as the Solicitors to the Council shall determine shall be set out in a formal contract document.


  1. Nominated Sub-Contractors and Suppliers


16.1. Where a sub-contractor or supplier is to be nominated to a main contractor, the procurement of the services of the sub-contractor or supplier shall be subject to these Contract Procedure Rules.


  1. Contracts Record


17.1. A record of all contracts in excess of £25,000 in value placed by the Council shall be kept by the Clerk. This record shall specify for each contract the name of the contractor, the works to be executed or the goods or services to be supplied, the contract value and the contract period. This is the responsibility of the appointed person authorising the contract to ensure that an accurate record is maintained.


  1. Contract Management


18.1. For contracts exceeding £25,000, project management shall be practised management, using industry agreed project management framework and standards as appropriate to the work being undertaken (for example, but not limited to, PRINCE2, PMI, RIBA, RICA). Suppliers will be expected to demonstrate their Project Management competency and qualifications.


  1. Contract Variations


19.1. Any necessary instructions to vary a contract shall be made in writing by the Clerk or persons responsible for supervising the contract. Where a variation occurs during the currency of the contract that is material and cannot be met from within the original contract sum an immediate report shall be made to the Council who shall decide what further action is necessary.


  1. Bonds, Guarantees and Insurances


20.1. For procurement projects where the spend is greater than £25,000 consideration must be given as part of the pre-qualification assessment and evaluation process as to whether a performance bond and/or parent company guarantee (if applicable) shall be required from the successful tenderer.

20.2. Consideration must be given as to the appropriate type (employee liability, public liability, professional indemnity, etc.) and level of insurance requirements for each contract.


  1. Termination of contracts


21.1. The Council reserves the right to terminate any contract immediately for any of the following reasons: Termination for Cause – where a supplier commits a material breach of the agreement to deliver services, or fails to deliver agreed services, in the agreed timeframe without a plan to address the failings.


  1. Compliance with other relevant legislation.


22.1. In cases where any law, statutory instrument of Government regulation is found to be at variance with any section of this policy, then that shall be applied and this document shall be amended accordingly.


  1. Status of this policy


23.1. This policy was approved in ?????????????? and will be monitored and reviewed by the Council or a  periodically, or in response to changes in legislation.




Adoption of Policy    – Date ………………………………………  Minute Reference……………..


Review before             Date ……………………………………..



Agenda Item 5a) Re-allocation of Road Space – letter from Cllr. Bridget Wayman to CATG Members


Dear CATG Member

Re-allocation of Road Space

I thought it would be helpful to write to you to update you on the current position regarding the Reallocation of road space project. An initial announcement was made by central government on 9th May in relation to the reallocation of road space with local authorities being asked to identify and deliver schemes that gave greater priority to pedestrian and cyclists. In response you will recall that the Council formed multidisciplinary teams of officers for each community area tasked with identifying potential locations where action would be helpful. In addition, members of the public, stakeholders, partners and other organisations were invited to put forward their own suggestions. All suggestions were subject to assessment in line with government guidance to identify a priority list for design and implementation. At that early stage there was an assumption that funding for the delivery of all the identified schemes would be provided by the Department for Transport through their Emergency Active Travel Fund Further information from the Department for Transport (DfT) was received on the 29th May and the 10th July indicating that the funding would be released in two tranches, the first for pop up cycling schemes on routes that offer an alternative to using public transport and the second for meaningful schemes that reallocate road space to cyclists and pedestrians with a clear level of segregation or closure to traffic. Indicative funding levels for Wiltshire were £227,000 for tranche 1 and £908,000 for tranche 2. A bid for the tranche 1 funding was successful and the identified schemes are in the process of being delivered. A bid for the tranche 2 funding is currently being put together and will be submitted in early August. In addition to the Emergency Active Travel Fund the government has also made funding available through its Reopening the High Streets Safely Fund, for which the Council has received £449,858. We have been able to use some of this for highway purposes but there are clear and strict requirements on the use of this funding which must relate directly to the need to support local business recovery. 11 August 2020 Cabinet Office County Hall Bythesea Road Trowbridge Wiltshire BA14 8JN Our Ref: BW/LY/E20077 What has become clear is that there is no readily available funding stream for the delivery of the smaller scale ‘pop up’ social distancing measures of which we have had many requests. I therefore propose to allow the Community Area Transport Group’s (CATG’s) to use the Discretionary Highways budgets allocated to them to fund social distancing schemes if they so wish. It will be for the groups to consider and prioritise social distancing schemes alongside other received requests. In order to facilitate this, I have asked the engineering staff that support the CATG’s to share the list of approved suggestions and restart the wider CATG activities. Whilst it is disappointing that a separate funding stream is not currently available for social distancing schemes the Council will continue to seek alternative funding for this, but in the meantime the CATG’s should consider whether any of the identified schemes are priorities to implement with their own funding.


Yours sincerely

Cllr Bridget Wayman Cabinet Member – Highways, Transport & Waste


[1] S135 (3) gives Councils the power to exempt contracts below £25,000 from a tendering exercise (see also NALC LTN 87 – Para 9)

Agenda for Town Council meeting 7.9.20

Mere Town Council

Town Clerk – Mrs. L. C. Wood

Duchy Manor,

Springfield Road,




BA12 6EW

Phone: 01747 860701



3rd September 2020

Dear Councillors,


Your attendance is requested for a meeting of the Town Council to be held on Monday, 7th September at 6.00 p.m. at Duchy Manor, Springfield Road, Mere, BA12 6EW  (We aim to hold the meeting outside subject to weather conditions)


Yours sincerely,



Lindsey Wood,

Town Clerk & RFO



  1. Public Session

Members of the public are invited to address the Council on any issue over which it has a power. This session will be limited to 15 minutes (3 minutes per speaker). The Chairman will convene the Town Council meeting after the public session (please note that once the meeting has been convened members of the public are no longer permitted to speak unless invited to do so by the Chairman).

Please Note: By entering the meeting room you are consenting to the use of your name being recorded in the Minutes.  The meeting may also be recorded by the press or members of the public.  Any person or organisation choosing to film, record or broadcast any meeting of the Council or its committees is responsible for any claims or other liability resulting from them so doing and by choosing to film, record or broadcast proceedings they accept that they are required to indemnify the Council, its members and officers in relation to any such claims or liabilities.

  1. Apologies – To receive any apologies for absence and to note/consider the reasons for the absence.


  1. To receive declarations of interest from members and to consider requests for new DPI dispensations.

Members are invited to declare disclosable pecuniary interests and other interests in items on the agenda as required by the Mere Town Council Code of Conduct for Members and by the Localism Act 2011.

(a) To receive Declarations of Interest relating to matters contained in this agenda, in accordance with the provisions of the Local Government Act 1972 in respect of officers and the Localism Act 2011 in respect of members.

(b) To consider any dispensation requests received by the Town Clerk.


  1. Planning
  2. a) Applications: (All applications can be viewed on Wiltshire Council’s website – and type in the relevant application number)


Application Ref:                20/06509/FUL

Application for:                 Full Planning

Proposal:                             Demolish existing conservatory and replace with single storey rear

extension.  Creation of dormer window to the front and rear of property.

At:                                          Suncroft, Springfield Road, Mere.  BA12 6EW


Application Ref:                20/05476/FUL

Application for:                 Full Planning

Proposal:                             Erection of garage and rear/side extension

At:                                          Fairhaven, Pettridge Lane, Mere.  BA12 6DG


  1. b) Concerns relating to sale of and activity on land at Burton Field


  1. c) Planning for the futureConsultation on proposals for reform of the planning system in England from Ministry of Housing, Communities & Local Government. (Consultation closes on 29th October 2020) The Planning for the future consultation proposes reforms of the planning process, bring a new focus to design and sustainability, improve the system of developer contributions to infrastructure, and ensure more land is available for development where it is needed.


  1. Highways, Rivers, Footpaths, Traffic & Transport

*a) Re-allocation of Road Space – letter from Cllr. Bridget Wayman to CATG Members


  1. Buildings, Open Spaces, Play Areas, Sports Grounds, Car Parks, Allotments & Cemeteries,
  2. a) Duchy of Cornwall allotment land rent review
  3. b) Lighting for Andy Young Pavilion car park – Cllr. A. Mead
  4. c) Water refill station – Cllr. J. Jordan
  5. d) To arrange liaison meeting with Sports Clubs
  6. e) Issues relating to Cemetery Regulations


  1. Finance, Policy & Resources

*a) Payments – to approve payments set out in payment schedules attached

*b) To consider draft Procurement Policy (attached)

  1. c) To consider review of income for financial year.


  1. General Items & Consultations

*a) Request from Sarum West Primary Care Network for temporary (portacabin) Hot Clinic to be located in Salisbury Street Car Park until end May 2021.

  1. b) Plans for Remembrance Day 2020


  1. Future meetings and agenda items



Note:  Members are reminded that the Town Council has a general duty to consider the following matters in the exercise of any of its functions: Equal Opportunities (race, gender, sexual orientation, marital status and any disability), Crime and Disorder, Health and Safety and Human Rights.


*Further information on these items enclosed/attached








Registered Charity No. 1093497



For Trustees to consider:


  1. Mere Youth Development Centre –Extension/Refurbishment project – Update on project and approval of granting of 25-year lease which will involve surveyors’ fees & solicitors fees (approx. £1500). Also looking for councillors to volunteer to join steering group.






Covid-19 Response & Strategy – Updated 9.6.20

Covid-19 Response & Strategy – Updated 9.6.20

Reopening of facilities


In line with government announcements:

The tennis courts have re-opened with restricted usage guidelines.

Mere Skate Park has reopened with restricted usage guidelines.

The Multi-Use Games Area has been re-opened with restricted usage guidelines.

The guidelines are printed on notices around the courts and the skate park.


Mere Bowls Club have re-opened with restricted usage guidelines issued by the Dept. of Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) and they have limited essential access to the Andy Young Pavilion only to use the toilets and hand washing facilities.


All childrens play areas remain closed and locked in accordance with government guidelines.  The Changing Rooms remain shut.


Having carried out a risk assessment of the public toilets in order to reopen them, I have decided that it is not possible to re-open the gents and the ladies toilets.  However, we have altered the lock on the disabled toilets and this has been opened for public use from 5th June on the following basis:

  • Suitable signage promoting social distancing and personal hygiene
  • The toilet will be cleaned twice a day (10 am & 2 pm)
  • The toilet will only be open from 7.30 am until 4.30 pm

Our cleaner has been given a risk management sheet, PPE and clear instructions on cleaning the premises.


As our buildings (Toilets, Andy Young Pavilion, Changing Rooms and Youth Club) had been closed for some time with water standing in the pipes, I have also arranged for the water systems to be disinfected and flushed through.  We will, of course, go into the buildings on a weekly basis and flush out the systems in each of the buildings from now on and until they are all back in full and regular use.


Mere’s Local Resilience Forum & Community Support Group


The group is still working well and the volunteer statistics up until the end of May show very impressive results:

Statistics up to the end of May:

  • Taken/made in excess of 923 related telephone calls.
  • More than 135 individual shopping or prescription collections.
  • More than 307 repeat shopping or prescription collections.
  • ‘Listening Helpline’ – 7 volunteers having made over 162 telephone calls


Some volunteers have now removed themselves from the register because they have had to return to work and others that were not being given any volunteer jobs are taking their place.  However, the time will come soon when we will get together with Richard to discuss how we see this going forward or indeed whether there is any need to continue.

Recognition has been made here:


We also have a mention and picture in an article in the July/August 2020 Wiltshire Life Magazine – – this can be ordered online or it is possible to buy a single copy by calling their office in Dinton: 01722 716997.




Legionella Risk Assessments + Training


Some years ago, the Town Council staff had some basic training from Wessex HVAC & Plumbing on Legionella and how to carry out some risk management to help prevent legionella, particularly in the changing rooms which are our highest risk building due to the showers, water storage and thermal mixing valves.  Our own staff record weekly temperature checks and run the water for 10 minutes in the changing rooms.  However, we do not do this for any of the other buildings.  At that time Wessex also said that they would come and do an annual disinfection of the storage tanks etc.  Since then Wessex have stopped doing the legionella work and we have asked various companies to quote us.  As I mentioned earlier, due to the fact that some of our buildings have been left unused and water has been standing in the pipes, I arranged for a company to come out and disinfect the water system.  I have subsequently asked them to give us a quotation for a Risk Assessment and survey of each of the water systems in the Andy Young Pavilion, Public Toilets, Changing Rooms, Youth Club, Band Hut, Cemetery + 3 Allotment sites and give us a written report and recommendations for remedial works and a control scheme for legionella.  I have received this quotation at £775.00. This would cover The Pavilion, Public Toilets, Changing Rooms, Youth Club, Band Hut, Cemetery + 3 Allotment sites.   I have also received a quotation of £150 to provide a Legionella Awareness Session for up to 5 people at the Town Council offices (approximately 2 hours) with certification of attendance.





Insurance Claim Settlement


Firstly, Glen Ings put me in touch with another company who have quoted to repair/replace the windows in the chapel.  This quotation comes out at £9038.14 + VAT.  The company are suggesting that the windows should be replaced like for like as not all the windows would need replacing.  This quotation is nearly £3000 cheaper than the previous quotation we received.  Unsurprisingly, Came & Company (our insurance brokers) have confirmed that Hiscox (our insurers) are happy to cover the net cost of the second quote at £9039.14.


This leads me onto two more questions:

Do you want me to instruct that company to go ahead and proceed on the basis of their quotation?

Do you want me to ask them to repair/replace the east gable end window that has been missing and boarded up for some years & other windows that were not damaged in the break in?


Hiscox are also offering £3828.08 as a figure to replace the machinery that was stolen.  My initial quotation schedule for replacement items came in at £3862.28 so I think this is a fair figure.  Hiscox are happy to settle the claim in its entirety and based on the £9038.14 quote for the windows and £3828.08 for the machinery, net of the £250 policy excess, they are offering a payment of £12,616.28.




Briefing Note No. 20-20 – Housing Land Supply


Please see attached Briefing Note.  Having read through this briefly, I wanted to bring it to the Council’s attention as it confirms that Wiltshire Council’s inability to demonstrate a 5-year housing supply leaves us all vulnerable to development outside the defined settlement boundaries.  The Briefing Note also outlines the significance of having a Neighbourhood Plan in these situations.


From the last Neighbourhood Plan meeting that was held with newly interested people, it seemed clear that no-one was interested in taking on the role of Chairman and no-one was interested in taking on the role of Secretary.  It seems to me, therefore, that the possibility of a Neighbourhood Plan for Mere in the near future is looking very unlikely.




Brick Wall alongside Pennybank Lane


You may recall that a couple of years ago one of our councillors noticed that part of the brick wall along Pennybank Lane had been removed and replaced with a fence.  Upon enquiry, it seemed that Mr. James Chalk, who had purchased the house alongside Pennybank Lane, had removed the wall because it was leaning and replaced it with a fence.  When I spoke to Mr. Chalk he did point out that he had kept the bricks and if we wanted to rebuild the wall, we could get the bricks back.    I don’t think that the Council ever made any decision on this and I have now received an email from Gilyard Scarth Letting Agents stating that the bricks are currently still in the garden of the house and as they haven’t heard anything from us, can they assume that the bricks are no longer required?





  1. Legionella Risk Assessments + Training – it was agreed that the Clerk should instruct the company to carry out the legionella risk assessment on the basis of the quotation provided and also to arrange for Legionella Awareness Session training to take place as soon as possible.


  1. Insurance Claim Settlement – It was agreed that the settlement figures were fair and that the Town Council should accept the offer to settle the insurance claim. With regards to the chapel windows, it was agreed to instruct the contractors to repair/replace the windows as they were and also to replace the window on the eastern gable end and any others that need work (subject to this not being too overpriced) so that the building can be brought back into use for some purpose.


  1. Briefing Note No. 20-20 – Housing Land Supply –Members noted that the Briefing Note confirmed that Wiltshire Council’s inability to demonstrate a 5-year housing supply at the present time leaves us all vulnerable to development outside the defined settlement boundaries and that the Briefing Note also outlined the significance of having a Neighbourhood Plan in these situations. With regards to the Mere Neighbourhood Plan, it was agreed that the Clerk should write to existing steering group members to suggest that an article should be published in Mere Matters with a statement to say that we feel unable to progress with the Mere Neighbourhood Plan because, although we have keen volunteer support, we do not have anyone who is prepared to take on the key roles of Chairman and Secretary which are necessary to drive this project forward.  We therefore feel that there is no alternative than to suspend the Mere Neighbourhood Plan.


  1. Brick Wall alongside Pennybank Lane – The Clerk confirmed that she hadn’t received any complaints from members of the public relating to the replacement of a fence instead of the brick wall. However, the brick wall was attractive and the bricks do belong to the Town Council & it may be that during some time in the future we would like to repair or replace the wall.   Old Gillingham brick is actually quite difficult and expensive to get hold of and I would suggest that, if we can find somewhere to store the bricks, we should arrange to collect them, remove from site and store them.  (We do have a store of old Mere stone from a wall at the cemetery at Wood Farm).  Members agreed that if the bricks can be removed and stored then the Town Council should collect them and store for safe keeping.


  1. Allotments – Application to erect a polytunnel (15ft X 15ft) at Southbrook Allotments – It was agreed to approve the erection of the polytunnel.



  1. Planning Applications:


Applilcation Ref:               20/03827/VAR

Application for:                 Variation of Condition

Proposal:                             Removal of condition 2 of S/2006/1537 (relating to the use of the lambing

shed only between January & April)

At:                                          Dews Pasture, Burton Farm, Mere.  BA12 6BR


The Clerk explained that this barn was the subject of a recent Part Q Conversion application which was refused.  The variation relates to an original planning condition relating to its period of use that was applied in the first place to ensure that the effect on neighbouring properties was minimised.  Neighbours have confirmed that the barn has been used for cattle rearing all year round.  The Clerk wondered why, if the barn has been used for cattle all year round for so long, it had now become necessary to remove the condition attached to the original planning permission.  However, she did not see this as grounds for refusal.  Councillors concurred.

Delegated decision – No objection.



Application Ref:                20/04076/TCA

Application for:                 Work to Trees in a Cons. Area

Proposal:                             T2 – T5 – Leylandii – Reduce in height down to 2.5 metres

T6 – Reduce in height to 2.5 metres

T7 – reduce inheight to 2.5 metres

T8/T9 Remove

At:                                          The Quarterjack, Castle Street, Mere.  BA12 6JF

Delegated decision – No objection.



Application Ref:                20/03877/OUT

Application for:                 Outline Planning

Proposal:                             Reserved matters for layout, appearance, scale and landscaping for the

access road only pursuant to outline planning permission 18/05138/OUT for

a mix of B1 & B8 uses comprising approximately 10,000m² of floorspace,

associated works and provision of access from the 303 Interchange site and

Hill Brush Factory (all other matters reserved).

At:                                          Land Adjacent to Dead Maid Quarry Industrial Estate, Mere.  BA12 6LA

It was felt that this Outline Application was to approve the reserved matters relating to the entrance road which would make further development of the site possible.

Delegated decision – No objections



Application Ref:                20/04103/FUL

Application for:                 Full Planning

Proposal:                             Erection of a detached two storey 2-bed dwelling and creation of a new

vehicular access with associated parking and garden

At:                                          Holmby, North Road, Mere.  BA12 6HP

The Clerk raised concerns about positioning, height and overall design of the house.  Also raised concerns about access and whether or not the off-site parking was adequate and achievable.  She felt that it may not be possible to get a vehicle into the first parking space and that this would result in a blocked driveway and cars out on the road which was already congested & suggested that this application should be considered by Full Council.   Cllr. Jordan concurred and said that the biggest issue would be access.  If cars are parked it will be impossible to drive in without a very wide entrance.  Cllr. Mitchell agreed that the full council should make the decision and expressed concern about parked cars on North Road.  The Chairman declared an interest.

Delegated decision – take this to Full Council for decision.


Application Ref:                20/04025/FUL

Application for:                 Full Planning

Proposal:                             Proposed ground floor rear extension, floor plan redesign and all associated works at Butts Paddock, Southbrook

At:                                          Butts Paddock, Southbrook, Mere.  BA12 6BG

The Clerk said that she didn’t think that the proposed would affect any neighbours.  Councillors agreed.

Delegated decision – Support



  1.  Payments – Delegated decision – The Chairman declared an interest in this matter and expressed no opinion.  Other Councillors were happy to approve the payment schedule attached and the Clerk authorised to make electronic payments.


  1. Decision on future meetings – Since relaxation of lockdown measures and given the fact that some Full Council decisions need to be made soon, it was agreed that a Council meeting should be held on 6th July as long as it meets within government guidelines and that the Clerk should write to all councillors giving them a choice as to whether they would prefer to hold the meeting either outside (if weather permits) or in the foyer at Duchy Manor or in the Andy Young Pavilion but with seats set 2m apart, or via Zoom or via another remote means.

COVID-19 Update


Mere Resilience Forum

Cards are being distributed around the town. If you are not able to collect one the
information is repeated below. Download and print or just write down the details.
The system is designed for those who are forced or instructed to Self-Isolate—please
DO NOT abuse.

Mere Town Council’s – Local Resilience Forum
If you are self-isolating due to Covid-19 and need help with:

■ Prescription pickup

■ Posting mail

■ Picking up shopping

■ A friendly phone call

Just get in touch with one of our telephone co-ordinators listed below between 8.00am and 6.00pm and we will do our best to find someone nearby to help you (for free!)
This is not an alternative to the NHS or Social Services; it is simply residents trying to look after each other.



Home Phone


Ann Rich

01747 861493

07413 512023

Isabel Page

01747 860297


Jane Batten

01747 860583


Joanne King


07740 858923

Julie Norris


07503 525954

Mary Wilson

01747 229609

07550 076240

Rachael Hansford

01747 860168

07989 470278

Rose Heesom


07791 559674

Roy Beavis


07878 903178


If you are self-isolating and have absolutely no other family, friends or neighbours who can help you, then please  contact  one  of  these  between the hours of 8.00am – 6.00pm.

If you can volunteer in any way or wish to make any comment then please contact:
Richard Jefferies
01747 863425
07950 797273



Mere Town Council is liaising with Mere Surgery and other local bodies and organisations to try and co-ordinate some kind of useful assistance, help and support for the community during the coronavirus situation.  One of the problems is that information is changing daily and so we will post links on our website to the official sites that keep their information updated.  We will also post useful advice that we have acquired on how members of the community can help friends and neighbours.  Being aware that some vulnerable people in Mere may not be on Facebook or on the internet at all, we are dropping leaflets through doors in some locations.

Useful links:

Useful contact numbers:
NHS 111 – only call 111 if you cannot get help online
Education queries – phone the Department for Education on 0800 046 8687
Wiltshire Council – 0300 456 0100

We need YOUR help during the Coronavirus Outbreak!


Mere Town Council’s – Local Resilience Forum responds to Covid-19.

We have now established 2 registers of volunteers:
A short list of telephone co-ordinators  – these will be the first points of contact for those who are self-isolating to contact if they need help with prescription collections, shopping etc. These volunteers will in turn identify the nearest person on the 2nd volunteer register and contact them to see if they can offer assistance. 

Postcards with the names and numbers of the telephone coordinators will be distributed throughout the town in the shops, post office etc this weekend. 
The April edition of Mere Matters (hopefully in the shops by Friday 27th March) will be a rather different one from normal and will include up to date information, more details of Mere’s response to Covid-19 and a further printed copy of the post cards. 
Through yet another group of volunteers, we are hoping to get this copy of Mere Matters hand delivered to every household in Mere (1700 copies).   It would help these volunteers considerably if you could sanitise or disinfect your letter boxes please – just a sensible precaution.

The support plan seems to be gaining momentum and we hope it will be all fully operational shortly. 
Volunteers have already carried one or two tasks for those in need.  We anticipate that the volunteer register will be continually updated with new people asking to help and others possibly asking to opt out.  
Thank you to all the lovely people of Mere.

You can contact me through email:

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