Saturday 27 November 2004 may, in time, turn out to be a significant date in the history of Whitchurch. It was the date chosen to officially launch the Whitchurch Town Association (WTA). (This is the body charged with the implementation of the ten projects arising out of the Town's exhaustive Healthcheck initiative.)
The Healthcheck-inspired vision for Whitchurch calls for a 'welcoming and attractive Town square','economic and social self sufflciency','fewer lorry movements','more activities for young people' and 'development that does not outstrip the facilities'.
Acting Chair of the newly formed Whitchurch Town Association Mrs. Harriet Titcomb, said: "It is our job to continue working with the community and the local Council to strive towards the vision that our residents have adopted for the town."
Sir George, who spoke at the launch, said it was good to ClIr Gill Nethercott, Whitchurch Town Association member and instigator of the Healthcheck back in September 2002 at the launch. She summed up the challenge ahead for the association: "Our aim will be to bring more life and pride into the town for the benefit of both residents and visitors. The Ten projects identified through the Healthcheck process are our best chance to make a difference to the town and I say.. .together as a community, let's go for it!"
As keynote speaker at the launch Sir George Young, said:
"I am very proud of what Whitchurch has already achieved through the Healthcheck process and I have enjoyed attending some of the events associated with this. I know that the Whitchurch Town Association will maintain the momentum as the Town moves to the all important implementation phase.
"I wish them a long and successful future in their efforts to secure a prosperous future for the Town and will play my role as the local MP in helping to drive this initiative forward"
Sir George said that Whitchurch was pioneering a new way of identifying what local people wanted, and then delivering it. "I was delighted to hear of the good relationships with the Town Council, Basingstoke and Deane District Council and Hampshire County Council. Unlike the Town Council, WTA can access statutory funding for individual projects - a key difference."
In picture from left to right Susan Flawith, Greg Harris, Gill Nethercott, Alison Wall, Harriet Titcomb (Acting WTA Chairman), GY, Roy Dykes (Mayor Whitchurch Town Council), Tony Corbin (Whitchurch Town Project Office), Linda Cowley