Cowbit village is a small and tight-knit community, having a population of around 1220 people. Cowbit has its own local school, shop and garage and is perfectly placed in a rural setting, being only 2 miles from Spalding and 16 miles from Peterborough.
Please use this site to gain information on local news, events, local businesses, clubs and societies in Cowbit village, and if you would like to promote your own local charity, business or event, please do contact us, so that we can help you make it a success.
Finally, we invite you to look at our photo gallery which gives you a flavour of our truly remarkable village, both past and present. If you have photos you would like to contribute to the site, please contact us.
Cowbit Village Website - LAST UPDATE 5th July 2015
Cowbit school fete is on 7th July 2-430.
Please join us for fun and games and help us to raise funds for the school
Statement by Cowbit Parish Council regarding changes to playing field management
Cowbit Playing Field was ‘gifted’ to the community many years ago, and the Parish Council (PC) appointed as custodians. The gift was conditional; it must remain a playing field, and cannot be sold or developed commercially. Any ‘community’ building work – such as a new pavilion – also has to be agreed by the donor’s descendants. The PC pay all running costs including grass cutting, electricity/water for the pavilion plus insurance and maintenance/repair/renewals to the play equipment.
The Playing Field Committee (PFC) was formed in 2012, partly to carry out some of the routine work, but mainly to raise money to fund improvements. A dedicated Playing Field Committee also has access to some funding sources which are not available to the Parish Council.
By 2014 the PC were concerned that very little seemed to be happening towards meeting these objectives, especially with regard to the children’s facilities. The PC also found meaningful communication with the PFC increasingly difficult. Indeed apart from Mr Matthews (chairman) we don’t know how many members were still active or even if it still had sufficient active members to form a quorum. One former PFC member has, however, told us that they are no longer involved.
At the PC meeting on December 8 2014, the PFC chairman complained that the PFC did not get the same level of support from the PC as the Village Hall Committee, and asked first that the PFC and VHC merge, and then that parish councillors become more involved in PFC matters. The PC responded that they would like to become more involved but to do this we needed to know when the PFC met. The PFC committee chairman agreed to circulate meeting dates, but until the statement issued by the PFC on Tuesday June 16, the PC weren’t made aware of any meeting – or any ‘decision’ to meet only at six-monthly intervals. The merger proposal was rejected by the village hall committee.
On March 8, the PFC gave notice that, due to ‘changed personal circumstances’ they would no longer be raising/lowering the Playing Field entrance bollard. This had been installed by the PC at the PFC’s request. By the end this daily duty appeared to have become one person’s job, and when that person was unable to continue no-one else was available or willing to take over.
At the end of April, the PC chairman asked the PFC chairman for loan of the pavilion keys as he wanted to make a copy and also show the pavilion to an outside party who was considering financing some improvements. In response, the PFC chairman announced that the PFC was about to embark on its own programme to build a new pavilion, and were drawing up plans, and would be seeking lottery funding, and would “show their plans to the Parish Council and the community” when ready. This was the first we had heard of this; none of it had been discussed with or agreed by the PC, and no further details were offered or given.
Consequently, the PFC chairman was asked to attend the annual parish meeting on May 19, with ‘pavilion’ being added to the agenda so we could discuss the plans. He did not turn up or send either apologies or a representative. Accordingly, the PC voted – unanimously - to take the playing field back under direct control. The clerk wrote to the PFC chairman on June 3 to advise him of this. There was still no response, so following the next PC meeting the clerk wrote again on June 13, by recorded delivery so there could be no doubt that the letter had been received.
Further details have now emerged of the PFC’s plans – though there was never any discussion of any kind with the PC; we know only what we have seen on social media and in the press. It seems the PFC had decided, on its own, to raise over £50,000 for a new football pavilion. The PFC had also offered, entirely off its own bat and again with no Parish Council consultation whatsoever, a number of ‘for ever’ commitments, including ‘naming’ the new pavilion after anyone who donates more than £15,000!
The Parish Council was concerned that quite apart from requiring a massive fund-raising effort from a relatively small community, a £50,000 football pavilion is neither the best use of that money, nor the most appropriate way of developing our field for the whole village.
We are of course keen to encourage and support the newly formed village football team, and have established a good working relationship with them. We also have our own exciting plans to improve the field facilities to benefit all villagers including but not exclusively for those who play football. Further details will be announced for consultation shortly.
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