EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE BRIEFING | NOVEMBER 2022                                                               Volume 29

This month we welcome new Members – Elizabeth Wotherspoon, Anne Duffy, Janet & Grahame Thompson, Carolyn Boyle, Stas & Judie Jozwiak, Derek Whittingham and Patricia Jones.

The Celebration Breakfast as the Catherine Wheel on December 6th is now sold out – and we have started a ‘wait list’. If you haven’t signed up and would like to go on the list please let us know at 07860 145982

Members and Guests enjoyed the Autumn Talk by Peter Hancock who showed his VE/VJ Day colour films, plus colour film of the first Regatta after the last was, attended by Princess Elizabeth. This took place at  Shiplake Memorial Hall on November 2nd. These films are quite unique, especially being in colour, and of such historical importance that the Imperial War Museum and the River and Rowing Museum both hold copies. Peter last spoke to the Society 20 years ago and our Committee Member David Whitehead was present on that occasion and this.

The Henley Standard of 28th October contained a letter from a reader congratulating whoever had the foresight, many years ago, to plant an avenue of lime trees  along the Fair Mile which, especially at this time of year provide such a wonderful welcome to visitors to Henley from the northern approach. This gave our Committee Member Valerie Alasia the opportunity to give the Society a ‘plug’ in a response published the following week, because it was your Society who were responsible for the planting.

Our Planning Committee continues to review and comment on all Planning Applications which come before Henley Town Council before determination by the planning authority SODC. We could do with some additional help, perhaps two volunteers to join our group. If you have an interest please contact Geoff on 07860 145982 and he will be happy to provide details of how you can assist.

All of us who are registered voters living in either Henley or Harpsden should have received a polling card for the Joint Henley and Harpsden Neighbourhood Plan (JHHNP) Referendum ( Polling Date 24th November 2022)

.If you have not and you wish to vote, either call 01235 422528 (the elections team number) or email elections@southandvale.gov.uk or http://www.southoxon.gov.uk/HenleyandHarpsden-NP to ask for your polling card. The latter also has all the documentation relating to the JHHNP. Postal voters should receive their postal votes by Friday 18th November. If you have not received your postal voting papers by that date, call or email the details given above.

For the last 5 years or so the JHHNP committee consisting of members drawn from Henley Town Council, Harpsden Parish Council and local residents have spent many hours deliberating over and putting together the JHHNP. The Inspector was most complimentary on the thoroughness of the plan. The objective of a neighbourhood plan is for local residents to articulate a shared vision and to shape the development and growth of their local area such as where housing and other facilities called for in the SODC Local Plan should be located. Those who wish to research the purposes of Neighbourhood Planning may wish to study https://www.gov.uk/guidance/neighbourhood-planning--2.

Our existing Neighbourhood Plan was made in April 2016 so this is the first review, v2.0 if you like. Without question, if gives all of us living here more control of what happens to our town and parish. The good news is that both our residents, councils and district council have gained immense experience since the first plan and are much better placed with a Neighbourhood Plan than without one because the latter carries weight in all planning decisions.

Notwithstanding the Neighbourhood Plan, your Executive Committee will take great interest and lobby strongly on your behalf on all major proposed developments within the Henley and Harpsden boundary for which the JHHNP is a significant tool.


The Gardening Buddies is a sociable group of community volunteers under the guidance of Henley Town Council’s Parks Services; it is inclusive for anyone with an interest in keeping Henley clean, green, welcoming and attractive.

The Buddies do some of the jobs that the Parks Staff are not able to do all the time and they lend a hand to the Greener Henley Wildlife Group and Town Community Events.
Town Councillors describe the group as being a good initiative that helps our park services team, whilst contributing to the community and tourism. The Town Council sub -committee Henley in Bloom financially supports the group’s planting schemes and are always very grateful for their help.

If you have an inclination to join this very worthwhile group our Executive Committee Member, Catherine Notaras would love to hear from you at catnotaras@gmail.com