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Communities invited to help shape Berkshire’s blueprint for nature recovery

Communities across Berkshire are invited to participate in workshops and a county-wide survey to help shape important plans for protecting and improving natural habitats in the county.

Berkshire’s six councils, led by us at the Royal Borough, are keen to involve residents, landowners, NGOs, developers, community groups and others to create a Local Nature Recovery Strategy for the county during 2024.

It will prioritise where time and investment are most needed to improve, protect, or enlarge habitats, create wildlife corridors, or create new habitats on land or around watercourses. It will support joint working around nature recovery and focus the decisions, expertise and investment of many individuals and partner organisations, alongside helping to inform and support funding bids for specific projects.

To get involved, you can share your thoughts in our survey here until 7 May, or register an interest in attending our in-person workshop at Braywick Nature Centre on 8 April or our online workshop on 30 April. Read more in our press release.

Cost of living community partnership continues to help households in need, as hundreds helped since summer


We're reminding residents that cost of living support remains available for those in need, as we and our community partners continue to work together to help those struggling financially.


We've been working closely with 18 frontline community partners to offer a range of support to residents. Together, we’ve helped 2,821 residents through our partnership and distributed 36,350 free school meal vouchers to families since 2021 – helping 1,959 vulnerable residents and 12,782 families since last summer alone.


Those facing difficult decisions around food, rent, heating or other essentials can still visit the council’s ‘Here to Help’ webpages to see what help might be available and check the free benefits calculator to see whether you could be missing out on national assistance.


Contact details for each of the community partners can be found on the RBWM Together website.

Our Financial Inclusion Team can also help residents to maximise their income. If you would like to discuss your income with a dedicated officer, please email and an appointment can be arranged.

Please continue to reach out for support if you need help. Read more in our press release.

Cookham Bridge now reopen to traffic following essential refurbishment work


Cookham Bridge has now reopened to motor vehicles following essential maintenance work.


This was slightly earlier than planned and follows the bridge's closure last October for work including bearing replacement, re-waterproofing, resurfacing and joint replacement.


Final works underneath the bridge will continue until next month to complete the project.


This important refurbishment project has extended the life of the Grade II listed structure, ensuring the bridge, which has a 7.5 tonne weight limit, continues to serve the community for many years to come and means more disruptive work will be avoided in future years.

International Women’s Day event celebrates women in business and raises more than £1,000 for charity


More than 100 female-led businesses or businesswomen from the Royal Borough attended a networking event to mark International Women’s Day last Friday.


Organised by MyRoyalBorough, our business support hub, the event raised £1,100 for The Dash Charity, which delivers our domestic abuse support service.


The event was hosted by Windsor & Eton Brewery and guests were treated to thought-provoking and inspiring talks from six female guest speakers covering sport, charity, environment, mental health, hospitality.  

Read more in our press release. Photography by Abi Moore.

Check you have suitable ID to vote in Thames Valley Police and Crime Commissioner Election on 2 May

We're reminding residents to ensure you're ready to vote in the Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) election by checking if you have an accepted form of photo ID – and applying for a free voter ID document if you don't.

By law, you need to bring along and show accepted photo ID in order to vote at a polling station at the PCC election on Thursday 2 May. You will be able to use expired ID if you are still recognisable from the photo.


A wide range of photo ID are accepted including a UK, European Economic Area (EEA) or Commonwealth passport; a UK or EEA driver’s licence; and some concessionary travel passes, such as an older person’s bus pass or an Oyster 60+ card. The Resident Advantage Card is not an accepted form of ID for voting.


If you don’t already have an accepted form of photo ID, you can apply by 5pm on Wednesday 24 April for a free voter ID document, known as a Voter Authority Certificate. Visit the Electoral Commission website or call 0800 328 0280 to apply and check the full list of accepted forms of ID.

For more information, including recent changes to rules around postal and proxy voting, read our press release.

Our initiative raises awareness of protecting water quality and wildlife in our watercourses


Yellow fish have been stencilled onto the pavement next to some storm drains in a new initiative highlighting the importance of protecting water quality and wildlife in the borough’s waterways.


Only Rain Down the Drain is aimed at raising awareness that nothing else should be poured down them, with the fish stencilled next to drains which lead surface water directly to rivers during periods of heavy rain.


Pouring oils, detergents, paint or sweeping litter into drains can be harmful to river health, water quality and wildlife.


In a pilot of the project, we've initially identified storm drains near Oldfield Primary School in Maidenhead, which lead to The Cut. Yellow fish have been stencilled near drains in a section of Bray Road near the school. Read more in our press release

Ascot students release a film promoting Ascot Durning Library


Ascot students have worked with a production company to learn about the film industry and to create a great short film about their local library. Eleven young students were supported to make the film by Cube Video, which held two sessions last month.


The Durning Library Trust funded the project, which was organised in partnership with our library service. The project was opened up for 11 to 14 year olds in the Ascot area.


A ‘premiere night’ event was held at Ascot Library on World Book Day, Thursday 7 March. At the event, the students, their family and friends all gathered in attendance to watch the completed film for the first time, as well as a behind the scenes video. In a nod to the Academy Awards, everyone was given an ‘Oscar’ for their contributions, walked up the ‘red carpet’ and gave speeches.


The film has now been released on our library service YouTube channel and is available for the public to watch here. Read more in our press release.

Reminder: Have your say in our Gambling Policy Review


Like all local authorities, we're responsible for licensing gambling premises in the borough, such as betting shops and venues with gambling machines.


We’re required to consult every three years on our gambling policy under the Gambling Act 2005. We're seeking the views of key interest groups, and there's still time for you to give your feedback by the consultation closing date of Friday 22 March.


The current policy sets out how gambling premises are regulated, how we take into account local risk factors and our expectation in relation to operators with licensed premises. It can be found by clicking on the link '2022-2025 : Statement of principles Gambling Act 2005' here. This doesn’t apply to online gambling which local authorities are not responsible for.


Visit RBWM Together for more information and to respond.

Check out our council tax guide for 2024/25

Check out our council tax guide for 2024/25, which summarises our budget for running services in the next financial year and total bill amounts by tax band and by area.

It also covers discounts, exemptions and support, along with cost of living support. To view the guide, click here.

Cutting food waste: Your essential guide for Food Waste Action Week


Food Waste Action Week is just around the corner, taking place from 18 to 24 March.

This year's theme, 'Choose What You'll Use', focuses on the power of purchasing loose fruit and vegetables to reduce food waste. Here are the top five tips from our Sustainability Team to help you cut down on food waste and make a difference.


  • Choose appropriate portion sizes - Be mindful of portion sizes when cooking and serving meals. Cooking only what you need can significantly reduce leftovers and wasted food.


  • Check use-by dates - When shopping for groceries, always check the use-by dates to ensure you're buying fresh products that will last longer. Planning meals around perishable items with earlier use-by dates can help prevent food from going to waste.


  • Plan your meals - Take some time each week to plan your meals ahead. By knowing what you'll be cooking and eating, you can shop more efficiently and avoid overbuying items that may end up unused.


  • Store food properly - Proper storage can extend the shelf life of many food items. Invest in good quality storage containers, and learn the best ways to store different types of produce to keep them fresher for longer.


  • Get creative with leftovers - Instead of letting leftovers go to waste, get creative with them. Use leftover vegetables in soups or stir-fries, and repurpose cooked meats into sandwiches or salads.


By following these simple tips, you can make a significant impact on reducing food waste in your household. Join us in taking action during Food Waste Action Week and beyond, because together, we can make a difference!

Royal Borough Community Spotlight

Here are just some of the upcoming community events and volunteering opportunities in the Royal Borough:

  • Clean the Dean annual litter pick (Saturday 16 March, 9.45am to midday) – Cookham Dean Village Hall. Litter picking will take place on all the roads and main public footpaths in Cookham Dean and the immediate surrounding area. All help welcome, wear sensible shoes and bring your own gloves. Hi-vis jackets, litter pickers and rubbish sacks provided. Organised by The Friends of Cookham Dean Village Hall and supported by the National Trust. For more information, email or call 07802 216241.

  • Bazaar and coffee morning (Saturday 16 March, 10am to 11.30am) - St Mark's Crescent Methodist Church, Allenby Road, Maidenhead, SL6 5BQ. Stalls with many items on sale, including delicious home baked cakes, stationery, books, CDs, DVDs and bric-a-Brac. Raffle with various prizes. Coffee is served all morning. Bring family, friends, neighbours and all those who are new to the community. All welcome - free entry. All proceeds go to St Mark's Crescent Methodist Church Fund. For more information, email

  • Windsor and Eton Choral Society (Saturday 16 March, 7.30pm) - Eton College School hall. The society will perform Bach’s St John Passion. For more information, visit the website.

  • Maidenhead Mencap - keen to start new projects. The AGM of Maidenhead Mencap will be on 21 March at 7.30pm. Maidenhead Mencap was set up more than 60 years ago to support children and adults with learning disabilities and their families. In the past, Mencap locally and nationally has campaigned for improvements for services, and the local group has provided clubs, playgroups, holiday activities and welfare support for very many people. It currently provides its Monday Club, a weekly social event for adults with learning disabilities and is hoping to restart its Wednesday Club soon for members who have higher support needs. For more information, contact Peter Jost via email.

  • Quiz night (Saturday 23 March, 7pm to 9.30pm - A prompt start is required at 7.30pm) - Woodlands Park Village Centre, Manifold Way, SL6 3GW. Tables of six or ask about individual entries. Price: £7.50 per person. Bring your own food, snacks, drinks and glasses. A raffle will be held with prizes. Book via email at or call 01628 623263. All funds raised to St Mark's Crescent Methodist Church. 

  • Cantorum Choir’s spring concert (Saturday 23 March, 7pm) - St Michael’s Church, Bray SL6 2AB. The choir will be performing Duruflé’s Requiem along with works by Nadia Boulanger, Vierne and Fauré’s Cantique de Jean Racine. The choir will be joined by international Mezzo Soprano Stephanie Wake-Edwards, a graduate of the Jette Parker Young Artists Programme at Covent Garden (and England’s entry into the Cardiff Singer of the World competition two years ago). For more information, visit the website.

  • The Arts Society Windsor March lecture (Wednesday 27 March, 1.30pm) - Old Windsor Memorial Hall, SL4 2RN). “The Art of Cameo Glass: from Portland Vase to Emile Galle” will be presented by Scott Anderson. Visitors and new members welcome. For more information, visit the website.

  • Dementia-friendly walk and refreshments (Starting Wednesday 27 March, last Wednesday of each month until 31 October, 11am to 12.30pm) - Braywick Nature Centre, Hibbert Road, Maidenhead, SL6 1UU. Meet in the main car park. Join for a walk in the great outdoors at Braywick Nature Centre, followed by refreshments. This event is suitable for people with dementia and their carers. For more information call 0118 959 4242, email or visit the website.

  • Cox Green Luncheon Club. The club has vacancies and invites you to come and join for lunch on Tuesdays at Cox Green Community Centre. The club caters mainly for retired people who are housebound or lonely through age, disability, ill health or bereavement and live within the parishes of St. Edmund Campion RC Church, All Saints Church, Maidenhead and the Church of the Good Shepherd, Cox Green. The team of volunteers provide and serve a freshly cooked two-course meal, followed by tea or coffee, at a reasonable cost. For more information, contact Pam Hitchcock on 01628 825157.

  • 1st Wraysbury Explorers are giving young people the opportunity to develop skills for life with new adventures and empowering challenges. Led by volunteers, the group have taken part in a wide variety of activities since opening in September 2023 including mountain biking camp, and a gang show with video creation. If you are ready for your next adventure, email to find out more.

If you have an upcoming not-for-profit community event or appeal for volunteers you’d like to promote in this newsletter, simply send basic information about your event to and it could be shared with more than 21,000 local residents.

You just need to include a brief description, when and where it takes place, and a link to a website/social media page/contact where people can find out more.

To see further volunteering opportunities in the borough, or for another way for community organisations to promote volunteering opportunities, please visit RBWM Together.

Our consultations - have your say

We regularly hold consultations and surveys to get your views on proposals within the Royal Borough.

Participating, sharing ideas, and giving your feedback is the best way to ensure your views are heard.

Our current consultations are:

Partner consultation:

Local Travel Updates

National Highways updates:

The M25 between junctions 10 and 11 will be closed in both directions from 9pm today (Friday 15 March) to 6am on Monday 18 March for demolition works and gantry installation. For more information, visit the National Highways website.

Council highways works:

For details of further council works on highways, visit our website. For full local roadwork details, including work by utility firms, please visit the One Network website.

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