Reprinted from Newsletter 94, dated 2000 February

Chairman’s notes

John Brunsdon

Happy new millennium to all members and readers. We are sponsoring a new iron kissing gate at the bottom of Bushy Coombe, as a special project. A town trail is to be installed as a town project, using pavement setts and occasional wall plaques.

We have planted a replacement Holy Thorn at St Benedict’s church to complement our gift to St John’s. These will be tangible and hopefully lasting enhancements by the Society. The mature thorn at St Benedict’s had died and was felled. (Be careful to purchase the genuine plant if tempted to have a specimen in your garden; otherwise you may be disappointed to find your plant blossoms only once a year, and pink instead of white!)

Meanwhile, English Heritage is spending money on the Tribunal — a fine medieval merchant’s house in the High Street. Already the roof timbers have had treatment for beetle infestation and the interior walls have been painted with traditional limewash. Tests are in progress to find the most suitable technique for cleaning the entrance stonework, which is long overdue.

W S Atkins has published its intention to proceed with a three-month experimental pedestrian-priority (10am to 4pm) in the High Street. Our Society has a longstanding policy favouring pedestrian priority. Nevertheless the misgivings of some traders are understandable. That is why a carefully monitored experiment is essential.

Protectionist wrecking tactics by some Mendip councillors have again delayed a decision on the Morlands site. No doubt any feasible scheme would be welcome, but to succeed it must be viable and acceptable to owners and planners alike.

Ian Rands has negotiated some good Glastonbury-based tree schemes for this season, so please turn out and help.

We still need a coordinator for clearing overgrowth on country footpaths. Volunteer, please — meanwhile all existing helpers, please carry on your good work.

Under Mendip Council’s experimental new system, the Glastonbury and Street area board meets to conduct all local business either at the Town Hall or in Street. This is intended to bring local government closer to the people. Members of the public can speak for three minutes on an agenda item, giving 24 hours’ prior notice. Meeting times will be posted at the Town Hall.