Firstly, following the terrible attack in Forbury Gardens in Reading on Saturday I’d like to send my heartfelt condolences to everyone who has been impacted. My thoughts are very much with you all at this terrible time.

We send our support and solidarity to the Reading community and everyone else in Berkshire who is mourning following the tragic event.

Our community in Bracknell Forest has been taking part, or will be taking part, in a number of events to bring us together. Due to the pandemic, unfortunately these events have occurred largely at home, online or at a social distance.

One of these events was Windrush Day, which took place on Monday (22 June) to recognise and give thanks for our Caribbean residents. The Windrush Generation suffered much hardship in their contribution to Britain and so the day recognised their sacrifice as well as the diversity and culture they have brought to the country. You can still join in some of the celebration, visit the council’s website ( ) for ideas on how to get involved.

Last week marked Learning Disability Week, which focussed on the importance of friendships during lockdown. The council’s Community Team for People with Learning Disabilities has been working closely with Berkshire NHS Foundation Trust to ensure residents with learning disabilities remain connected to their friends and can build new friendships. The team have been creating innovative ways to support socialising; last week one group even took part in their first virtual cookery session together! Our team has also been setting up a weekly activity pack for people with learning disabilities and family carers, giving ideas and suggestions for activities suitable for people with learning disabilities of all ages and abilities.

This week, many of us will be showing our thanks for Armed Forces Day. We have a strong community of military personnel in the borough, many of whom have been busy contributing to the coronavirus response across the country. You may have met serving personnel at the coronavirus testing centres over the past few months. Additionally, we have been working closely with the armed forces as part of our recovery planning. So, I would like to share my thanks to all those in the borough, and further afield, who have spent time serving their country, we will be flying the flag for you at Time Square.

On Saturday, to coincide with International Pride Day, we will also be flying the Pride flag at Time Square in support of all our LGBTQ+ staff and residents. You may also notice that our stag logo, which is usually forest green, will be displaying its rainbow colours that day too! For anyone missing Pride this year due to restrictions, you can still celebrate with Pride Inside:

Cllr Paul Bettison, BFC leader