Parish Villages. The
present Civil Parish of Winscombe and Sandford is a combination of the ancient
ecclesiastical Parish of Winscombe and areas surrounding the former hamlets of
Barton, Oakridge, Sandford, Sidcot and Woodborough. The parish has a population
of about 4000 and covers approximately six square miles of countryside on the
western edge of Somerset's Mendip Hills.
Education. Both Winscombe and Sandford have a
primary school. Churchill School, a state comprehensive just outside the
Parish, is under three miles away. Sidcot, just across the A38 from Winscombe,
has an independent school for children aged 3/18 years. There are several
Worship. The Church of St.
James the Great, dedicated in 1236, is the Parish Church of Winscombe. A
Meeting House of The Society of Friends is just to the north of Oakridge Lane.
There are records of Quakers meeting in that area since about 1669.
Winscombes Lynch Chapel, A United Reform Church, is on land bought in
1827. Sandford has the Church of All Saints (1881) and a Methodist Church
(1890). Roman Catholics may worship at Our Lady Queen of Apostles
Leisure. Details of parish clubs and
societies can be found elsewhere
Health. While hospital treatment necessitates
travelling, perhaps to Weston-super-Mare or Bristol. The parish has a medical
surgery, with four doctors and three nurses, two dental surgeries, optometrists
and a pharmacy. In addition there are chiropodists, physiotherapists,
osteopaths and several practitioners of alternative medicines. For support
there is a Contact Scheme which takes people in need to local hospitals safely
and in comfort. For sick animals there is a veterinary surgery.
Safety. This is a comfortably, safe area. Our
policewoman is often seen in the parish, being happy to pass the time-of-day
with villagers and, when needed, visit to provide advice and
comfort.Neighbourhood Watch schemes abound and burglaries are relatively few.
Winscombe has a fire station staffed by retained fire officers and firemen.
Shopping. The parish has three
banks but, sadly, only one Post Office. Bath, Bridgwater, Bristol, Taunton,
Wells and Weston-s-Mare are within easy travelling distance, though public
transport is by no means comprehensive. So, while it is possible to shop in
large, and perhaps impersonal, super-stores, there is the attraction of
supporting local traders, buying from people you know and, in doing so,
spending less time putting even more carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. Who
said Use them or lose them'?
Woodborough Road, Winscombe.
On a parish shopping spree your purchases could
include: meat; confectioneries; tax advice; bread; groceries; shoes; lingerie;
pot plants; jewellery; painting materials; fine china and glass; fish;
journals; wines; books; flowers; cakes; a new hairstyle; holidays;
pharmaceuticals; stamps; videos; petrol; beauty treatment; even a single screw;
beer; new and used cars; double-glazing; take-aways (chips with just about
anything, Indian meals and pizzas); and, though probably not on every spree, a
Sandford Stores, Sandford