For the last few years Bridgwater Twinning Forum has timed it’s annual event with the town’s Quayside Festival. So On Saturday July 9th this year people can spend the day enjoying music, comedy, dance, carnival and street theatre to their hearts content around the streets of Bridgwater and when they think it’s all over, pop over to the Arts Centre for the evening for the Twinning Show. Bridgwater has 7 Twin towns around the world and this is the day they all get together and put on a celebration of international friendship with music, film and up to date information. The show starts at 7.30 and this year the event will be free (but with an option to make a donation to Ukraine).
Bridgwater held its first Active Travel Day on Saturday 21st May, from 10am -3pm, in Bridgwater Town Hall. The event was sponsored by Bridgwater Town Council and Bridgwater Area Cycling Campaign. Active Travel is about health and well-being, as well as the need to cut dangerous traffic emissions. A variety of organisations came along to share ideas, resources and support. The event was opened by the newly-elected Mayor of Bridgwater, Councillor Liz Leavy, who pledged the Town Council’s commitment to the campaign for healthy and sustainable travel.
Saturday 21st May will be Bridgwater’s first ACTIVE TRAVEL DAY. Organised by the Bridgwater Area Cycling Campaign and held at the Town Hall, the event will focus on getting us all out of our cars and getting moving, at the same time reducing our carbon footprint and enjoying the beautiful countryside all around us. There will be various stalls offering information on local cycling and walking routes, the benefits of using public transport and recent changes to the highway code. The event will run from 10am to 3pm and will include an introduction by the Town Mayor, talks and information from organisations such as the Somerset Road Safety Partnership, SASP and Lifecycle UK. There will be free security bike marking from local PCSOs, free bike maintenance workshops and of course refreshments.
At the elections of May 5th, the people of Westover (and Bridgwater) chose Labour candidates one more time to represent them. Westover is now represented at County Unitary level by Kathy Pearce and Brian Smedley and on Town Council by Kathy, Brian and Tim Mander. At the same time Labour increased control of Bridgwater Town Council winning 2 extra seats to make it Labour 13 Tories 3. At the same time it’s all change at County Hall with the new Unitary Council. Kathy and Brian were elected to represent Bridgwater South, which includes Westover and Hamp. However, the new County make up is 61 lib Dems, 36 Conservative, 5 Labour, 5 Green and 3 independents. Sedgemoor District Council will continue in existence for one more year.
Kathy Pearce (Labour) 804 ELECTED
Brian Smedley (Labour) 768 ELECTED
Matthew Fermor (Con) 508
Klaus Galeitzke (Con) 440
Phil Stone (Lib Dem) 201
Theo Jupp (Lib Dem) 199
Full Unitary results here
Town Council results
Kathy Pearce (Labour) 562 ELECTED
Brian Smedley (Labour) 536 ELECTED
Tim Mander (Labour) 508 ELECTED
Brian Bolt (Con) 308
Full town results here
Derek Gibson, MBE, has died aged 94. On 1st April this year, the town of Bridgwater lost one of it’s greatest proponents, a man who led the fight for the preservation of the town’s heritage, the enhancement of educational provision and the encouragement of professionals and business leaders to engage positively in the community. All through his time in Bridgwater Derek wasn’t afraid to stand up to the establishment which he was also proud to be part of, being awarded an MBE. Derek’s service was held at Sedgemoor crematorium on Friday 29th April with testimony to his life given by his wife and sons to the tune of Louis Armstrong’s ‘What a Wonderful World’ and concluded with Elgar’s ‘Land of Hope and Glory’.
Henry Atherton Derek Gibson was born in 1927 in Monmouthshire to a committed Methodist family although he was not especially religious. At the end of World War Two Derek was conscripted into the Royal Engineers and served in the Army of the Rhine interrupting his study of Architecture at the Welsh School of Architecture from which he finally qualified in. He moved to the Bridgwater area in 1954, following his parents who had retired to Goathurst, and worked for a few months for the Borough Architect of Bridgwater and then for the local firm of architects Steer & Shirley-Smith eventually becoming a partner of the company in 1962, and took over the Bridgwater office in 1967. He served for a time as treasurer and secretary of the South and West Group of the Bristol Society of Architects, then, after it reformed as the Somerset Branch of the Royal Institute of British Architects, serving two years as Branch Chairman. He retired from the architectural practice in 1998 Continue reading “Derek Gibson 1927-2022”