* ONE of Winchester’s most historic buildings was revealed by the Hampshire Chronicle to be under serious threat.

Winchester City Mill is the oldest working watermill in Britain and dates back more than 1,000 years.

At the beginning of the year its owners said its future was in jeopardy because of serious flood damage from 2014.

A campaign was under way and the National Trust, which owns the building, says it needs £125,000 to secure its future.

The Mill has already raised £80,000 of the total required for the repairs.

* IT was announced that JTP Architects had won a national competition run by Winchester City Council to work on Silver Hill 2.

This year the architects spent the year producing a supplementary planning document (SPD) for the £150 million scheme, which collapsed last year.

The SPD was published last month, outlining a new vision for the site.

* PLANS for a new leisure centre for Winchester moved closer as Winchester City Council purchased the Garrison Ground at Bar End from Tesco.

The move meant more options available for the council when considering its replacement of the ageing River Park Leisure Centre.

* A NEW leader was elected at Winchester City Council.

Following the departure of Stephen Godfrey, who stayed on as portfolio holder for finance, Cllr Caroline Horrill was elected as the sixth Conservative leader of the council in six years.

She was voted in with 23 votes, and 19 for Liberal Democrat group leader Lucille Thompson.

Cllr Godfrey said at the time he felt it was the right time to leave the role after 17 months at the helm. He cited further pressures and obligations coming his way, and felt he wanted to spend more time with his family.


* A NEW era dawned at Winchester Cathedral when its first female Dean was installed.

The Very Rev Catherine Ogle was instituted as the 38th Dean of Winchester, and said she wanted to strengthen links between the city and the diocese.

Her installation followed months of searching for a replacement for the Very Rev James Atwell.

She took up the position after serving as the dean of Birmingham, a position she held since 2010.

* DUMPED horses left abandoned close to Alresford Golf Club were finally retrieved.

Six horses had been running wild across the fairways since before Christmas.

The horses were previously in a field close to the course but were collected by owners this month.

The issue caused concern with local residents, and one of the horses died, cause unknown, prompting fears for their welfare.

* A HISTORIC first was held in Winchester when the Lord Chief Justice, Lord Thomas, sat at Winchester Law Courts.

It was the first time that the city has hosted the most senior judge in England and Wales and the Court of Appeal, which is normally based at the High Court in central London.

Lord Thomas sat for the day in Court Two with the two presiding judges of the Western Circuit, Mr Justice Dingemans and Mrs Justice May.

* DEVELOPERS revived their plans for hundreds of homes on fields on the edge of Winchester despite objections from residents.

Linden Homes decided to lodge an appeal against a city council decision to refuse 350 homes at Vale Farm.

The Linden scheme attracted objections from 468 people, and 98 letters of support. The developer went on to withdrawn their appeal before it went to the Planning Inspectorate.


* A LORRY caught fire outside Winchester fire station in March – but there were no firefighters there to tackle the blaze.

The fire on Easton Lane closed the road in both directions between North Walls and the Tesco roundabout in Winnall.

Watch manager Kevin Robson said his crew was at a community safety event in Harestock and had to travel across the city to the driver’s aid.

He said they believe the fire started around the engine. The vehicle was mostly empty as the driver had been out on deliveries, but there had been some damage to cabinets on board.

* VILLAGERS showed their opposition to a new housing development.

Scores of campaigners turned out in force to protest against the building of nearly 100 homes off Main Road in Otterbourne by Gladman Developments.

The Save Otterbourne action group were backed by councillors who said the development went against the Winchester Local Plan.

The developer appealed to the Planning Inspectorate for a decision to refuse to be overturned, but later in the year the developers withdrew this appeal.

* A WELL-known Stanmore man was found dead in a house off Thurmond Crescent.

Carl Scott, 37, was found in a house in Birch Court on March 22. A man was later charged with murder, and the case has since been adjourned.

The trial of David Richard Gray, 35, of no fixed abode, is now expected to begin on April 23, 2018 at Winchester Crown Court. Gray denies the charge.

* A WILDLIFE charity began work on its newly-acquired farm after surpassing its fundraising target.

Hampshire and Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust moved in the first cows and sheep at Hockley Meadows Farm near Twyford after it successfully purchased the land.

An appeal to meet the £200,000 price of the 31-acre farm exceeded its target with days to go before the deadline.The trust got more than 1,600 donations totalling £187,000, followed by pledges for £45,000 from charites and corporate supporters.

Onsite, the charity is using the the land to support the traditional wildlife-friendly farming methods that have shaped the Itchen Valley’s water meadows


* UPROAR in Alresford with the sudden closure of the bar at the recreation centre. The bar at Arlebury Park is a key part of the lives of many people in the town including members of the rugby and football clubs.

The bar was closed by the town council with the loss of five jobs. But the move split the council with chairman Lisa Griffiths resigning just two minutes into a public meeting. Four other town councillors also resigned – Sam Kerr Smiley, Keith Barrett, Ben Gower and Annie Saunders.

More than 630 people signed an online petition calling for the bar to reopen.

* WINCHESTER is to get its special version of the perennially popular board game Monopoly. Mayor Jane Rutter helped to promote the launch. People awaited which city streets will be deemed the equivalent of downmarket Old Kent Road and Whitechapel. Which will be Mayfair or Park Lane?

* THE Great Hall was full of beautifully surreal medieval knights to help celebrate the 775th anniversary of King Henry III awarding the Lord of Barton Stacey the right to hold an annual fair. Villagers decided to mark the milestone with something out of the ordinary, with charities and groups painting the foam figures.

* AT long last the model of 1870 Winchester was found a permanent home in the City Museum. A labour of love by the late Roger Brown the model depicts in the city in the pre-motor car age. Mr Brown, frustrated at the lack of a permanent home, had once told the Chronicle that he was minded to set the model on fire. He never carried out his threat and now the splendid creation has been restored to its full glory by staff at the Hampshire Cultural Trust.


* DELIVEROO, the online takeaway delivery service, started in Winchester and immediately drew criticism for the actions of some of its cyclists. Complaints have been made about near-misses to pedestrians and cyclists breaking the Highway Code.

* The cold spring has put county vineyards on high alert. A heavy frost now could destroy all hopes of a decent harvest so some vine growers have been warming up their land with scores of small fires to make sure the temperatures do not sink too low.

* THERE was joy in Otterbourne after developer Gladman Developments announces it has dropped its plans to appeal against the refusal of planning permission for 90 homes. The Save Otterbourne Action Group gathered for the Chronicle photographer in celebration that a valued green space is set to be preserved.

* IT started with a fascination for the whereabouts of the bones of King Alfred in Hyde but has since spread to a genuine community-wide interest in Hyde abbey the monastery where the great king's bones were reinterred in the Middle Ages. Hyde 900 has been organising digs in people's back gardens.

* GOOD news for pub-lovers. The empty Fox and Hounds in Crawley revealed it was to be reopened by Lenny Carr-Roberts the chef who revived the Bugle Inn in Twyford.

* FORMER city council cabinet member James Byrnes was sacked from his post at Williams Garage after allegation for theft. The police did not prosecute Cllr Byrnes, who refused to stand down from the city council, but the councillor accepted a community resolution order. Such an order can only be applied where there is an admission of guilt.

* THERE was a poignant farewell for the former pupils of the Winchester County High School for Girls, the girls grammar school now occupied by The Westgate School in Fulflood. It closed in 1973 on the reorganisation of education that saw Peter Symonds Grammar School converted into a sixth-form college.

* THE Earl of Wessex, Prince Edward was at the Discovery Centre in Winchester to open The Mysterious Miss Austen exhibition that marks the 200th anniversary of the author's death at a house in College Street.


* TWO people were killed in a road collision on the M3 just south of junction 9 close to Highcliffe. The crash caused traffic chaos with both carriageways closed for hours. It is the most serious crash on the motorway near Winchester in many years.

* THE entrance to Winchester from Romsey Road will soon look very different. The university was given permission to build a new landmark building on the west Downs site. It will be home to the computer and digital related degree programmes.

* THE General Election saw Steve Brine comfortably returned as MP for Winchester and Chandler's Ford constituency. He was immediately promoted to minister at Department of Health from his previous role a whip. He said: "This new role is a tremendous opportunity to work in an area I am passionate about and to ensure the voice of Winchester and Chandler's Ford is heard at the heart of government.

“The future of the A&E department at the Royal Hampshire County Hospital has been on the agenda for years as has the proposal for a new emergency care unit at a greenfield site between Winchester and Basingstoke.”

* CITY councillors met to decide on a swimming pool at the new £36.3 million leisure centre at Bar End to replace the outdated facility at River Park in Hyde. Designers asked the council if the pool should be 50 metres with space for 350 spectators, and big enough to hold national competitions.

* PUBLIC pressure was being imposed on the city council to make sure the new Silver Hill planning framework put culture and history at the heart of the new scheme.

The previous scheme – that was jettisoned in 2016 – was mainly for flats and shops.