Rookley Parish Council

Welcome to the web pages of Rookley Parish Council. Until the 1970s the village was part of neighbouring Godshill, but local government re-organisation at that time gave it it's own Parish Council. The Parish Council is the first tier of local government and the closest to residents. Its members meet each month and have responsibility for such things as grass cutting (the Council owns The Green) and commenting on planning applications. The Localism Bill at present in Parliament will increase the Parish Council's responsibilities. The Council has an annual precept of £6130 to meet its budget.

Some history
Most of the parish is farmland and many of today's farm holdings are first mentioned in the Middle Ages, although the farm houses and farm buildings are of later date. Rookley village seems to have grown up as a hamlet associated with Rookley Manor (earliest mention 1203) around the small green that forms a triangle of land between the Niton and Godshill Roads.
There was no church in Rookley as it lay in Godshill Parish. Non-conformism was important on the Isle of Wight from the 18th Century, particularly a sect named as the "Bible Christians" who later merged with the Methodists. The first meetings in Rookley were held in Holly Cottage, which survives next to the old post office. Today Methodists still worship in a small chapel (recently refurbished) opposite The Green
On the 1866 map "School and Post Office" on the Godshill Road is shown. The school, now a private home, was built in 1846 and is a listed building. Today children have to travel to Chillerton or Arreton for primary schooling and Newport for secondary schools.
In the 1920s clay pits were dug north of the Godshill Rd and a brickworks was opened by the Pritchett family. This was the last brickworks to operate on the Isle of Wight, closing in 1974. The clay pits have now become lakes within Rookley Country Park.

Today
Rookley has to a large extent become a dormitory village, although the site of the brickworks, Pritchetts Way industrial estate, still accommodates small industries. The village enjoys its own shop and has a Post Office. The Country Park welcomes non-residents to its pub and restaurant, while the historic Chequers Inn on Niton Rd is a popular venue for eating and drinking. There is a village hall and recreation ground on Highwood Lane managed by the Village Association. Southern Vectis provides a good bus service, with route 3 operating from Newport to Shanklin every 30 minutes for most of the day.

Vacancies
There are currently two vacancies for Parish Council Members. Anyone interested should contact the Parish Clerk Mike Taplin miketap@globalnet.co.uk

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