New Wells Rec working group meets for first time

Mendip District CouncilThe first meeting of the new Wells Recreation Ground working group has taken place, with the group being allocated several key tasks.

The working group has been set up to help the Wells Recreation Ground Trust (WRGT) revise its strategic plan, as suggested in the recent Options Appraisal.

It will make recommendations to the trustees to ensure that the community has a say in how the Bishop’s Barn and recreation ground will be improved to become viable and self-sustaining for the future.

The working group is made up of nine people from the local Wells community. Members of the group include a teacher, a school governor, a student and retired businessmen and women. Some members of the group have specific expertise that they can bring to the project, for example, experience of working with charities and delivering sustainable projects.

The immediate tasks allocated to the group are:

· Governance – Legal expertise has been sought to explore how the governance arrangements for the WRGT can be changed. Once this issue has been looked at by the Trustees, the working group will have input into the new structure and the recruitment of trustees from the wider community.

· Residents’ on-street parking scheme – A lead person has been agreed to liaise with residents in and around Silver Street to see if at least 60% are in favour of developing a scheme. If there is support, then further consultation will take place to agree a solution.

· Destination play area – Better Play Areas for Wells will lead on this aspect. Key tasks are to agree the location and size of the play area and then consult on the choice of equipment with input from local young people.

· Formal football pitch – Wells Football Club will lead on establishing a formal football pitch. Discussions will soon be taking place on the pitch specifications and identifying potential funding streams.

· Bishop’s Barn – A small focus group has been established to work in partnership with the Somerset Building Preservation Trust on how the Barn structure can be improved and how income can be generated from future activities.

Cllr John Parham, chairman of the working group, said: “The first meeting of the working group was extremely productive and I would like to thank those local people that have given up their time to help. Their experience and passion will be vital to the success of this project.

“The working group will play a key role in proposing a series of recommendations to the Wells Recreation Ground Trust. The aim is for the recommendations to be ready for discussion in November.”

Cllr John North, chairman of the Wells Recreation Ground Trust, said: “We have said from the outset that we want the community to be involved at the heart of this project, and that’s exactly what the new working group will enable.

“Lots of work will now take place before the Wells Recreation Ground Trust can consider the working group’s recommendations for a new strategic plan.”

Full details of the Options Appraisal for the recreation ground and barn can be found on Mendip District Council’s website at and can also be viewed at the Council Access Point at Wells Town Hall.