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Edition 8 - Wednesday 27th May 2020

Welcome to the eight edition of the
Rainbow Times 

Welcome to all our readers.

We hope this newsletter has been useful during lockdown and has provided a source of helpful information. As lockdown measures begin to relax, we plan to reduce the frequency of publication so as to include relevant information - next week will be our last weekly issue.

We invite your comments and suggestions for communications from Wokingham Without Parish Council as we have many projects underway for our community. 

It is also worth stating that whilst we supports our local churches, we are not a religious organisation and we are apolitical. Parish councillors are all volunteers and if recent events have made you consider doing something yourself for our community, then please do contact us with your interest and we can put you in touch with other local organisations providing support in our community. 

This edition features:
  • Covid-19 public information webinar
  • Bike Month - June 2020
  • A circular walk in the parish
  • Fly tipping 
  • Home learning
Your Parish Council team

Link to previous editions:
Edition 7 (20th May)
Edition 6 (13th May)
Edition 5 (6th May)
Edition 4 (29 April)
Edition 3 (22 April)
Edition 2 (15 April)
Edition 1 (8 April)
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The vast majority of households in Wokingham Without are not signed up to this newsletter and are potentially missing out on helpful information and news

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Thank you!

If you need help:

Wokingham Borough Council is working with local charities to provide a community response for those who don't have support and need advice or practical help. 

Contact Wokingham Citizen's Advice on 0300 330 1189
(Entering 0118 978 7258 if you are prompted)

Phone lines are being staffed Mon-Fri 9am to 5pm

This issue of the Rainbow Times features the colour Orange and the letter O
Can you identify all the items in this picture?
For next week's edition, please send us pictures you take at home or whilst out on your daily exercise, of Blue things or things that begin with the letter W.
Pictures from the local area are particularly welcome!
Email them to

Covid-19 - Public Information Webinar

Woodley Centre Surgery, Wokingham Primary Care Network and partners at Involve and Talking Therapies will be hosting an information webinar using Microsoft Teams, on Thursday 28th May from 6.30 -8pm. 
  • If you are using Microsoft teams events for the first time, please join the session 10 minutes before start time, as you may need to install an app to your computer or device.
  • Live texting (Chat) function will be enabled to ask questions through from the start of the meeting.
  • We recommend joining from laptop or tablet devices but smartphones will work too.
  • If you need any technical support, a technical facilitator will be present.
The educational content in this presentation provides general guidance and health promotion advice to support the healthcare response to COVID-19. It does not constitute a doctor-patient relationship. Any specific health enquiries pertaining to your own health requires a clinical assessment and focused advice, and you should contact your own General Practitioner/Doctor.
Join Microsoft Teams Meeting

Love to Ride?
June is Bike Month!

The UK Government has recently placed cycling at the centre of plans to get the country moving again. Cycling is recommended for daily exercise and is a good way to boost your mood. It also has huge health benefits: people who ride regularly reduce their risk of cancer and heart disease by 45%. 

Cycling is also a great option at the moment if you need to travel to work, but want to maintain social distancing and avoid public transport.

It only takes 30 seconds to register and Love to Ride can provide guidance and support to help people ride safely and confidently. There's also £300 worth of local bike shop vouchers available for Wokingham Borough residents to win! 

Find out more and sign up at

A walk around the parish

Circular Route from St Sebastian’s Memorial Hall to Squires Garden Centre via Grays Farm / Holme Grange Craft village.

Distance: 3.6Km
Walking Time: 1 hour 30 mins (excluding any stops)
Description: Gentle walk through Gorrick Woods visiting Grays Farm (Pick your own farm), Holme Grange Craft Village and Squires Garden Centre.
Suitable for pushchairs? Yes (with exceptions marked)
Suitable for bikes? – Yes (with exceptions marked)
Start at: St Sebastian’s Memorial Hall Car Park
1. Carefully exit onto Honey Hill, cross the road and enter the footpath (Byway 28).  If you look closely, you will find the Footpath sign nestling in the greenery
2. Continue along this path along the Hatch Ride extension.  When you reach Heathlands Road, cross the road and continue into Gorrick Woods. 

3. When you reach a crossroads in the path (with a metal gate on your left). Turn right onto a wooded path. There is a small (easy to miss!) Rambler’s Route sign, low down on the right. 
4. At the end of the field, you reach Hall Hunter field – please ensure you keep to the central path at all times and be aware of agricultural machinery that might be in use. At the end of the field, exit the gate and turn right to enter Gray’s Farm. If you turn round you will see that there is a sign directing you to the farm!
5. Walk through the fields (Rhubarb on your left!) towards the buildings to reach the main entrance, currently marked by the famous Strawberry! The farm is now open for pick your own Strawberries, rhubarb, spinach and broad beans, Monday to Saturday 9am-6pm. See their website for the latest details!
7. Walk down the track away from the farm until you reach Heathlands Road.  Turn right and walk on the verge for a short while until you reach the entrance to Holme Grange Craft Village
Currently, only the Aquarium at Holme Grange Craft Village is open (Mornings only).  However, as lockdown eases, expect more of the units to be open, including the Café. Check their Facebook Page for the latest updates!

8. Return to Heathlands Road, and continue walking on the right hand side of the road.  (There is a narrow verge you can use).  After a couple of hundred metres, you will see Squires Garden Centre on your left. The Garden Centre is currently open Monday to Saturday, 9 - 5.30pm and Sundays 10.30 till 4.30pm
9. Leave the Garden Centre, turn left and continue down Heathlands Road until you reach the public footpath sign (well hidden in the trees!) on the right hand side. 
10. Turn right onto the path back into Gorrick Woods. Almost immediately turn left, cross a ditch and then right again to reach a well worn path. 

At the large Scots Pine (pictured) follow the path to the left and head back towards Crowthorne. There is a small stream (currently dried up) to cross using small logs which may be a challenge for push chairs.

(NB Don't worry if you miss this short cut - the path continues along the edge of the Hall Hunter field, from where you turn left and retrace your steps back through Gorrick wood. Unfortunately, parts of this path are very muddy and not suitable for push chairs etc, so head left through the trees until you reach the well work path described earlier) 
11. Eventually you reach the main track through Gorrick where you turn left back towards Heathlands Road. (NB If you continue across you will end up at St Sebastian’s Playing Fields near Nine Mile Ride). Head back across Heathlands Road and back towards the Memorial Hall Car Park.

Fly tipping

Although the tips are now open to residents (via a pre-booking system), we are still seeing lots of incidents of fly tipping in the parish. Did you know, that if you pay someone to take away your rubbish, and it gets dumped, you're the one who risks being prosecuted for fly tipping?

Here are some useful tips to ensure that you use a reputable waste carrier:
The S.C.R.A.P. Code
  • Suspect all waste carriers; do not let them take your waste until they have proven themselves to be legitimate.
  • Check their waste carrier’s registration details, then verify them by searching the Environment Agency or by calling 03708 506 506.
  • Refuse unsolicited offers to have any rubbish taken away.
  • Ask what exactly is going to happen to your rubbish and seek evidence that it is going to be disposed of appropriately.
  • Paperwork should be obtained. Make sure you get a proper invoice, waste transfer note or a receipt for your waste removal – this should give a description of the waste and provide the waste carrier’s contact details.

Learn at home: Wokingham Borough Council launches online adult education courses

COVID-19 has caused many people to lose jobs or have time at home and Wokingham Borough Council is offering them the opportunity to learn something new or build their skillsets in order to get ready for opportunities which come up in the future.

Free online training courses to help people into employment are being rolled by the borough council. The adult education team has transferred all its teaching online, and it’s interactive too, with tutors to guide students and answer questions.

The borough council has worked alongside its sub-contractors, Activate Learning, Connecting Communities in Berkshire and CAP Money Courses, to allow learners to come together online, face to face with tutors and other learners from the borough. 

The adult education team and its partners are gradually increasing the offer to cover the following courses in the weeks ahead:

  • English and maths
  • English as a second language
  • Mental health and wellbeing
  • Creative writing
  • IT skills
  • Debt management
  • Online job searching and how to succeed in a virtual interview
  • Coding for beginners

To see details of the latest courses visit the Adult Education course listing website. New courses will be added regularly as our online offer develops, so it’s worth checking regularly for courses that may be of interest.

“Some of our residents may currently be in a situation where they may find themselves with more time on their hands and a chance to learn new skills and complete training to make them more employable,” said Cllr UllaKarin Clark, executive member for children’s services, including adult education.

“There’s a broad range of topics covered by our adult education team and I would urge residents to take a look and make the most of learning from our fantastic tutors. Even if you’re new to online learning, they will make it accessible and interactive for those who sign up.”

On top of this, both Bracknell & Wokingham College and Reading College and Connecting Communities in Berkshire even more online taster courses in the coming weeks. They will be adding courses all the time, so it’s a good idea to keep checking.

We would also like to hear from residents and employees about other courses they would like us to offer and the type of support they would like to enable them to take part in remote learning. 

Eligibility criteria do apply, including:

  • Must be 19 years old (as of 31 August 2019) or older.
  • Been a citizen of a country within the EEA and have ordinarily been resident in the European Economic Area for at least three years.
  • Other criteria do apply, contact the team for more information.

Anyone interested can call Linda Stacey on 0788 524 2692 or Jon White on 0776 738 0722 from our adult education team during working hours (9am-5pm, Monday to Friday) for a chat or email us on

Our challenge for you this week!

Our challenge for you this week involves a pleasant walk through Pinewood. Can you spot:
a badger, a squirrel, a rabbit, a giant butterfly, a sunflower, and a very well hidden penguin (hint: look up high!) in a rather unusual place?

Map with locations to follow next week, but please do send us your photo's of the other animals if you've found them!
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