Having been privileged to view the very first Minute Book of the East Brent Parish Council formed in 1894.
The following extracts have been summarised.
(Be prepared for a long but interesting read)! Why not press print to read several pages at your leisure?
From The East Brent and Rooksbridge Parish Records
The first Parish meeting for the election of Parish Councillors for the Parish of East Brent was held at the Parochial School, East Brent on Tuesday December 4th 1894 in pursuance of notice given by the overseers.
The Rev. H. Dennison of East Brent was elected Chairman of the meeting.
The Chair was taken at 7-00 pm.
18 valid nomination papers were handed to the Chairman. Viz.—
Mr. Arthur Baker Rooksbridge
Mr. John Banwell Rooksbridge
Mr. Isaac Boley Rooksbridge
Mr. George Body East Brent
Mr. William Cook Comer East Brent
Mr. Robert Cook North Yeo
Mr. Charles Churchill Rooksbridge
Mr. William Cox Day Rooksbridge
Mr. Gilbert Dibble Rooksbridge
Mr. Henry Hatch East Brent
Mr. Immanuel Hounsell East Brent
Mr. Edwin Hubbard East Brent
Mr. Henry Sealey East Brent
Mr. George Slade Edingworth
Mr. John Ware East Brent
Two other nomination papers were received making 18 in all.
After a show of hands the Chairman declared the following six gentlemen elected as Parish Councillors.
Mr. Gilbert Dibble Rooksbridge
Mr. William Cook Comer East Brent
Mr. George Body East Brent
Mr. George Henry Slade Edingworth
Mr. Robert Board Edingworth
Mr. William Cox Day Rooksbridge
The above minutes of the first meeting were confirmed on Dec 10th 1894 by
Henry Phipps Dennison (Chairman)
Jan 5th 1895
1. Messrs R Board, W Comer, G H Body & G H Slade. Having inspected them, the Parish papers and documents remain in their existing custody for the present.
2. That tin boxes be procured by the clerk in which to keep the public papers & documents belonging to the Parish Council.
3. That the clerk be instructed to make inquiry of Archdeacon Dennison, the Churchwardens and Overseers as to whether any Parochial Charities are to come under control of the Council and if so. To ask if they will kindly assist in making the necessary transfer.
July 5th 1895
That the kind offer of the Hon. Archdeacon Dennison to get an engineer to test the water towers of the Knoll, be accepted and report the same to the Parish Council.
That this meeting of parishioners, thank the Hon. Archdeacon Dennison for having supplied the Parish with water for so many years. And also for his further generous offer to further the supply.
October 18th 1895
That the clerk be instructed to give notice to the clerk of the Axbridge Rural District Council, that this council intends to oppose their proposed scheme for supplying the Parish of East Brent with water. And that the Council engage or join with any other Parish or Parishes in engaging a solicitor for that purpose.
November 25th 1895
The Parish of Biddisham having approved of the resolution passed at our last meeting, to employ a solicitor to oppose the Cross water scheme. It was proposed that W.F.H. Bishop of Bridgwater be herewith employed. And that Messrs Board, Body & Comer be appointed to confer with the Chairman of the Biddisham Parish Council on that matter.
January 2nd 1896
That a committee consisting of the Chairman and Messrs Body, Dibble and Day, be appointed to wait upon the Burnham Urban District Council as quickly as possible to ascertain if they will be prepared to supply Edingworth and Rooksbridge, or either of these places with their water? And if so, upon what terms and conditions?
March 31st 1896
Annual Parish Meeting
That this meeting of Parochial Electors deeply regret the death of the Ven. Archdeacon Dennison, who has been Vicar of this Parish for the last 50 years. And desire to express their heartfelt sympathy with Mr.s. Dennison, the Misses Henley and the Rev. H.P. Dennison in the severe loss they have sustained.
August 29th 1896
That the Clerk be instructed to write to the Clerk of the Rural Sanitary Authority at Axbridge, calling attention to the defective condition of the Waterworks and pumps in the Parish. Whereby the inhabitants are unable to procure water.
June 19th 1897
W Woodward gave notice that he would move at the next meeting of the Council the following resolution. That the clerk be instructed to write to the Editor of the Weston Mercury and call his attention to a statement in the Ex member of the Council’s letter, in which he says, some members of the Council were insubordinate. And to inform him that such is not the case and ask the Ex member to withdraw that statement.
May 15th 1898
That the Clerk write to Mr. Boley at Rooksbridge calling his attention to an arrangement to put a bridge across his paddock at Rooksbridge adjoining the Turnpike Road. And the same having not been done requesting that he do so.
August 8th 1898
That the Clerk be instructed to write to the Rural District Council at Axbridge, complaining of the state of the highway at Rooksbridge (Nr Mr. Arney) caused by the repair of a bridge which being suddenly raised many inches above the level of the road, renders it most dangerous, especially to vehicular traffic.
November 16th 1898
That the consideration of the matter of putting up fencing at Edingworth be deferred until the next meeting.
June 15th 1899
That with respect to the memorials received by the Council from the residents of the district at Rooksbridge in the Parish of East Brent, and also from those of the district of East Brent respectively, for the provision of an improved water supply for the districts. And in which it is severally suggested that the same should be provided by means of the extension of the South Marsh Water Scheme. Thereto this Council is of the opinion it is desirable that such provision should be made and in the manner suggested, and the Clerk be instructed to send a copy of this resolution together with copies of the memorials to the Axbridge Rural District Council.
October 12th 1899
To Axbridge Rural District Council
That we beg to enquire if the district at Rooksbridge in the Parish of East Brent from which a memorial from same was presented to this Council and forwarded by it to your Council on June 16th 1899, is included in the proposed extension of the South Marsh Water Scheme and to express this Councils strong opinion of the necessity of an improved water supply for the said district.
May 10th 1901
The question of the amount of remuneration to be paid to the assistant Overseer for the collection of the Sanitary Rate was discussed. It was decided that the salary remains as fixed by the Overseers in 1900. viz; Eight Pounds per annum.
November 1st 1901
That the extensions of the mains of the South Marsh Waterworks to houses in the Parish not having pure water as set forth in Mr. A Pourells report and estimate dated 23rd October 1901. and also such extension to houses situate to the south side of the Turnpike road at Rooksbridge (Nr Mr. Arney) receive the sanction of the Council.
April 15th 1902
That a footbridge and handrail be erected in a footpath leading across a field at Rooksbridge in the occupation of Mr. Duckett. And that Messrs House and Banwell be appointed a committee to carry out the work.
March 15th 1903
Papers were brought before the Council by the Chairman which had been received from the Somerset Count Council relating to the proposed Education Scheme together with other matters, No resolutions thereon were passed.
May 1st 1903
Those owners of small tenements in the parish not exceeding a rental of £8 per year. Be rated for the purpose of the Poor Rate and the Sanitary Rate.
That the clerk be instructed to send a copy of the memorial received from Rooksbridge for a more convenient Water Supply, to the clerk of the Axbridge Rural District Council and express the approval of this Council to request therein made being granted.
May 29th 1903
That Messrs. John Higgs and Isaac Boley of Rooksbridge be suggested to the County Education Committee as suitable persons from whom the Count Councils representative Local Manager might be selected.
September 4th 1903
A letter received from the clerk of the Cheddar Parish Council with regards to the encampment of Gypsies in the district was considered. It was decided that no steps be taken by the Council.
March 7th 1904
The following six gentlemen were declared elected as Parish Councillors
Mr. Isaac Boley Rooksbridge
Mr. Alfred Emery East Brent
Mr. William Gamlin East Brent
Mr. Charles Popham East Brent
Mr. William Salvidge East Brent
Mr. Henry Edward Say Rooksbridge
The bad state of the roads especially the Turnpike Road at Rooksbridge was complained of. It was considered that in the latter case which is in much the worst condition, the damage is chiefly caused by Traction Engine traffic. It was suggested amidst approval of the whole meeting, that the Parish Council make complaint thereof to the proper authorities.
March 28th 1904
That complaint having been made of a Public Footpath being stopped at Rooksbridge by the erection of fencing in which barbed wire has been used across a field called ‘Parkinson's’. The clerk be instructed to Mr. Broom the owner of the said field, requesting that he will either remove the said fencing or erect a wicket gate which pedestrians may pass through.
December 16th 1904
That a copy of the memorial received from the inhabitants by the Council from those parts of the parish not having it, requesting the assistance of the Council in their desire for a second daily delivery of letters, be sent to the General Post Office together with the names of the signatories thereto. With the recommendation of the Council that such second delivery be accorded.
December 23rd 1904
That a committee consisting of Messrs. Boley and Say be appointed to wait upon the owners of the lands to ascertain if they will consent to a footbridge and handrail being erected by the Council in a footpath leading from Pill row Wall to Mudgley Wall Lane?
April 15th 1905
That a footbridge and hand rail be erected in a footpath leading from Pill row wall to Mudgeley Wall Lane.
February 3rd 1906
1. That the Clerk forward the following resolution to Mr. William C Day of Rooksbridge.
The members of the Parish Council of East Brent, regretfully accept the resignation of Mr. W C Day, who during the past eight years has with efficiency, zeal and punctuality discharged the duties of Chairman.
His impartial and kindly manner has won our esteem, and his perfect acquaintance with Council affairs has proven most valuable in all our deliberations.
We deeply regret the cause of his resigning and beg to tender our deepest sympathy with him in his illness, trusting that he will soon be restored to health and strength and that at no distant period we may have him amongst us again.
2. That the new Chairman. Mr. William Gamlin and Mr. Popham be appointed a committee to have the stiles and bridges repaired in a footpath leading from Mudgley Wall Lane to South Common.
March 6th 1907
A Parish meeting for the election of Parish Councillors was held at the Parish School East Brent at 7-00pm
Mr. W C Day of Rooksbridge was unanimously appointed Chairman.
The candidates elected to the council were:
· Mr. Isaac Boley Rooksbridge
· Mr. William Gamlin East Brent
· Mr. Charles King Rooksbridge
· Mr. Charles Popham East Brent
· Mr. John Ridout East Brent
· Mr. Edward Wall East Brent
April 15th 1907
That Mr. John Ridout of East Brent and Mr. Charles King of Rooksbridge be appointed by this Council as Managers of the East Brent British School for a term of Three years.
January 8th 1908
That a question of providing a Telegraph Office for Rooksbridge be adjourned until the next meeting, pending a reply from the Postmaster General respecting the amount of guarantee required.
June 20th 1910
That whilst the past experience of the East Brent Parish Council does not find to encourage them in offering advice to the Post Office Authorities, they venture to express the opinion that the proposed business hours at the Rooksbridge Post Office would give general satisfaction.
November 25th 1910
That the Council is of the opinion that little or no inconvenience will be caused to Parishioners by the closing of the Telegraph Office at Noon on Bank Holidays.
March 22nd 1912
That the Clerk be instructed to write to the Clerk of the Burnham Urban District Council and enquire upon, what terms and conditions they would supply their Fire Brigade to the Parish?
January 12th 1914
That this Council is of the opinion that opening the Sub-Post office at Rooksbridge at 8-00 am instead of 7-30 am as formerly, the inhabitants generally will not be inconvenienced thereby.
January 30th 1915
That Mr. William John Brooks of Rooksbridge be appointed a manager of the Church of England School.
September 18th 1915
That the Clerk be instructed to write to Mr. J G Broom, asking him to repair the stile in the footpath leading across ‘Parkers’ to the Rooksbridge Factory.
January 20th 1917
That the Clerk be instructed to write to Mr. G J Gilling asking him to repair the steps to the stile without delay, in his Home field leading from the Main Road to Pillrow Wall.
March 17th 1917
That Mr. A Downes be appointed the Local Correspondent and Organiser in connection with the National Service Scheme.
June 12th 1917
That the Clerk have posters printed adopting Clause 3 of the circular issued by the Board of Agriculture and Fisheries. Re. the destruction of Rats and Sparrow pests.
November 3rd 1917
That the Clerk be instructed to write to Mr. Robert Board Rural District Councillor, calling his attention to the bad state of the bye roads in the Parish, considering there are two men employed to look after them, and to request that he will bring the matter before the District Council that the same may be attended to forthwith.
January 29th 1920
The Parish Council proposed that a dinner be provided for the soldiers, sailors, airmen and their wives. And the Council appoint the war memorial committee to make the necessary arrangements November
November 10th 1922
The chairman and members of that war memorial committee attended the meeting,
The chairman Rev. Wickham on by half of the war memorial committee asked the Council to accept the care of the war memorial monument which had now been completed and was free from debt.
21 November 1923
Mr. W Champion proposed that the application of the postmaster Bridgwater, for an earlier despatch of letters at noon on Saturdays be supported.
Mr. Gilling is to be requested to mend the stile in the footpath leading from Pillrow to the main road.
17 July 1925
Mr. Champion proposed footbridges at Rooksbridge be repaired, and new steps be fitted into the stile. The work to be carried out by Mr. Miller.
26 March 1928
Mr. Champion proposed that the Council accept the offer of the Weston super mare fire brigade to attend in the case of an outbreak of fire in the Parish. If their services are required Council to send an annual subscription of £2-2 shillings to their funds.
23 June 1930
Mr. Popham proposed that the Parish of East Brent being in extent some 3400 acres including the Hamlets of Rooksbridge and Edingworth being well supplied with pure water through the South Marsh scheme and having a population of over 600 inhabitants, had no desire to be amalgamated with any other Parish.
21 April 1931
Mr. Champion proposed that Mr. Hodder and Mr. Gilling be appointed to act as charity trustees.
The Clerk is to write to the county surveyor calling his attention to a dangers zone at Rooksbridge, opposite the Post Office where the roads fork, stating that several accidents have occurred at this spot due to motorists driving over the curbing, and requests that the main road may be more indicated at night so that this danger may be averted.
8 May 1931
Mr. Hill proposed that the alterations of the boundary of the Parish as proposed by the Axbridge rural District Council be accepted.
7 October 1931
Mr. Champion proposed that the question of erection of houses for agricultural labourers be deferred for the present.
20th April 1933
Mr. Burdge proposed that the attention of the District Council should be called to the nuisance caused by gypsies camping in Mudgley Wall Lane in the road leading to Mr. Hamlin's, and horses been tethered to the hedges, leaving litter about and often trespassing on farmers land.
26 May 1933
Mr. Champion proposed that the question of granting of a half-day holiday on Saturdays only, to the postman serving the East Brent and Rooksbridge Sub Post Office and Wall boxes in the vicinity, be approved.
The Council request the Post Office authorities to give an afternoon delivery to those living in the bye roads, and also to point out, the morning delivery is so late, that it is impossible to replied to such letters as the boxes at the sub-offices are cleared at 9 to.10 AM
26 February 1935
The Clerk read a letter from the Weston super mare fire brigade stating that owing to the Weston boundary being redefined, they were returning the cheque for £2 and 2 shillings, as their brigade in future would not be available for fires outside the their district.
Mr. Ham proposed that the Council accept the offer of the Axbridge volunteer fire brigade to attend any outbreak of fire that may occur in the Parish if sent for, No payment to be made to by the Council, the brigade will collect subscriptions throughout the Parish once a year.
12th of February 1937
The chairman said that they had met to consider plans for celebrating the coronation of their majesty's King George the 6th and Queen Elizabeth.
It was proposed a Tea be provided for all children in the village up to 14 years of age and that mugs be presented to them, and that a souvenir of some kind be given to old age pensioners and that a programme of sports be arranged.
Mr. Ham proposed that a Dance be held in the Council school from 8.00 PM until 1.00 AM, the charge to be 1 shilling.
29th March 1938
The meeting was called to advise parishioners how to act in the case of an air raid. There was a large attendance of ladies and gentlemen to listen to the local Air Raid Precautions Organiser Mr. Shearrman.
He explained different gases that may be used and how to overcome them; his advice was to get one room in the house sealed up, preferably on the ground floor, which can be done for very small cost. Gas masks would soon be issued. He asked the men to act as air warden and a large number responded.
25 April 1939
Mr. Hill proposed that such repairs be carried out in a footpath leading from Mr. Pineo to Stone Cottages in White House Lane. Mr. Miller to be instructed to carry out the work.
26 June 1939
In view of the proposed Blackout for the West Of England the Clerk was instructed to have notices printed and published in the Parish.
18 July 1940
Mr. Watkins proposed posters to be displayed throughout the Parish calling the attention of occupiers of land to their danger of enemy aeroplanes landing, and to request obstacles be placed in such field to prevent same.
3 March 1941
A special Parish meeting was held in response to an appeal from Axbridge Rural District Council, for the enrolment Volunteer Fire Fighters. The attendance was small. It appears that most of the men available are acting as A R P Wardens, Auxiliary Fire Service, Home Guard or Special Constables and the Parish seems fairly well covered.
1 August 1941
Mr. Hill proposed that the Clerk be instructed to send a postcard to all farmers in the Parish, with a request that brooms and beaters be kept ready for use near corn fields, hayricks and farm premises to deal with incendiary bombs or other enemy action likely to cause fire to crops etc.
27 March 1942
The question of Fire Watching was was discussed. And also that of secondary lighting and heating was raised in case of invasion. First Aid Stations had been set up around the Parish.
The poor condition of the car which pulls the trailer pump of the local fire service was raised by Mr. Watkins. It was agreed that the Clerk was to write to the Axbridge Council asking for something better.
Mr. Watkins of also asked permission to have bills printed, announcing Public Gas Lectures.
30 April 1943
Road signs: No road signs can be replaced.
Hedge-cutting: The Council cannot demand anyone to do this during the war.
19 April 1944
Mr. Watkins drew attention to the fact that two agricultural homes had been built in White House Lane by the Rural Council. He considered these to be too far away from the centre of the village and off the bus route. In his opinion the Parish Council should at be consulted when sites are chosen.
14 August 1944
An emergency Parish meeting was called to arrange sports and tea for children in celebration of V J Day in accordance with the home office circular.
11 February 1946
There was much discussion on the acquisition of a Parish Hall or Community Centre, including playing fields and suitable buildings for the recreation and cultural pursuits for the whole community.
18th of April 1946
The new Parish Council met at the county school room. Members present were Messrs W Watkins, W Ham and R Champion. The newly elected members were: Messrs P D Pineo, J R C Gilling, E G Jesty, A J Lee, Mrs. C M Reading and Mrs. R Gibson: Clerk.
Victory celebrations were on the agenda. Tenders were to be obtained for a marquee, a brass band and catering for 300 persons and 200 children. A suggested gift to Parish children was found to be impractical.
Mr. Lee proposed application be made for 4 Council houses at Rooksbridge and 4 at Edingworth.
Mr. Gilling proposed that application be made to the district surveyor for a 30 mile speed limit from Mr. Councells garden to the new road at Rooksbridge.
18th the May 1946
If unable to obtain a speed limit at Rooksbridge, halt signs must be used at all road junctions.
Mr. Pineo proposed that a direction sign be erected at the Edingworth end of White House Lane giving direction to Weston and Loxton. Mr. Clapp proposed that the AA or RAC be approached re: erecting a sign on Frys corner giving directions to Rooksbridge Weston and Bridgwater.
Mr. Ham proposed that bus shelters be erected Rooksbridge and the Knoll Inn.
1 October 1946
Mr. Willis reported the re-erection of Signposts in the near future.
A letter was read regarding a hedge in front of Rooksbridge Council Houses. The owner had been approached and had agreed to reduce this hedge.