On 29th November, WRCC was delighted to receive a visit from Lord Gardiner of Kimble, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Rural Affairs and Biosecurity.
Lord Gardiner was keen to discover more about rural community initiatives in Warwickshire. Kim Slater, our Chief Executive, and Sarah Brooke Taylor, our Rural Housing Enabler, showed him a range of local projects and introduced him to various local partners and volunteers.
During the morning, Lord Gardiner inspected the first Passivhaus development in the county, at Wootton Wawen, and enjoyed finding out more about its unique energy efficient approach with the developers, Warwickshire Rural Housing Association.
Other affordable housing developments we discussed en route were the upcoming scheme at Bearley, the recently completed homes at Snitterfield and the award winning housing development at Brick Kiln Close, Norton Lindsey.
Lord Gardiner then listened attentively to the Trustees’ plans for their new village hall rebuild project at Norton Lindsey, before meeting some of the management committe for the New Inn, the first community owned pub in Warwickshire.
After a quick stop for lunch, most of the group headed off to the ACRE conference in Solihull (the UK association of Rural Community Councils, comprising WRCC and 37 other members). Lord Gardiner was delighted to be driven round all day in a WRCC Back&4th minibus – a winning combination of comfort and convenience!
WRCC very much appreciated having the opportunity to showcase a small sample of rural community achievements. We also wanted to demonstrate the value of our local knowledge and support – and Lord Gardiner was impressed by this, as well as asking us to keep in touch regarding our future successes.
So thank you for your time and interest, Lord Gardiner – we hope to have lots more interesting local projects and stories to share with you when you next visit Warwickshire!