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Coastal Communities Team and public transport on the agenda for Bude Community Network Panel

Cornwall Council - Latest News - Fri, 20/04/2018 - 09:36

There’s an opportunity for people living in and around the Bude Community Network area to learn more about the Coastal Communities Team and public transport plans at their Community Network Panel meeting on Monday 30 April at 7.00pm.  The meeting takes place in the Conference Room, Parkhouse Centre, Ergue-Gaberic Way, Bude, EX23 8LD.

The agenda and more information about the panel are available on our Bude Community Network page.

Paul Tilzey from Bude Coastal Communities Team will tell the panel about the team’s aspirations to improve the local environment, enrich and protect historic assets, create jobs and enhance the area’s visitor appeal through community partnerships and collaboration.  As part of this the team are looking to secure funding for a coordinator who will work with partners to help deliver these priorities.

Nick Truscott, Cornwall Council’s Team Leader (Planning and Contract Management), will give a presentation on the One Public Transport project and answer questions about local public transport priorities.

There will also be a briefing on the Community Network Highways Scheme, which will give community network panels a greater influence over local and major transport schemes.  Community network panels will be able to review and prioritise local schemes and will have a budget of £50,000 for highways improvements in their area.

In addition to this, there will be an opportunity for local updates from Cornwall, town and parish councillors and time for public questions.

Cornwall Councillor Nicky Chopak, Chair of Bude Community Network Panel, said: “Come along to your Bude Community Network Panel and find out more about Bude Coastal Communities Team’s aspirations, discuss local projects and find out how you can support them or get involved.  You’ll also have the opportunity to hear about the One Public Transport project and the Community Network Highways Scheme, so please join us.”

Bude Community Network Panel meets quarterly to discuss matters that affect the local area and to progress these by working in partnership with Cornwall Council and its partners, including town and parish councils, the voluntary and community sector, and the police and health services.  Some of the areas that community networks focus on include anti-social behaviour, community hospitals, economic development, the environment, community planning, regeneration, conservation, community safety, transport and highways issues. 

Bude Community Network Panel includes all four Cornwall Councillors for the area and representatives of the 11 parishes in the community network: Bude-Stratton, Jacobstow, Kilkhampton, Launcells, Marhamchurch, Morwenstow, North Tamerton, Poundstock, St Gennys, Week St Mary and Whitstone.

Story posted 20 April 2018

Categories: Councils, Politics

Children in Cornwall celebrate the seasons through song

Cornwall Council - Latest News - Thu, 19/04/2018 - 17:12

Hundreds of children from across Cornwall have come together in the last few weeks to perform as part of the Cornwall Music Education Hub’s schools annual vocal programme, ‘Songfest’.   Image of School Children singing

This year was the largest Songfest to date with children from over seventy schools and colleges performing in nine different venues around Cornwall. 

The theme was ‘A Song for All Seasons’ which focused on folk songs of the South West, each song depicting a different month of the year. 

The folk songs were arranged by Devon-based songwriter and composer, Chris Hoban, who kindly gave permission for the songs to be performed at the events.  

Angela Renshaw, Vocal Strategy lead for Cornwall’s Music Education Hub said: “This year has been a real joy working with the teachers, pupils and musicians to create our interpretations of some of the most traditional of songs that are such an important part of our musical heritage.

“The children performed with great energy and purpose and it is fabulous to see that singing is alive and kicking in Cornwall's schools.“

The annual Songfest event has been created by Angela Renshaw and Patrick Bailey, the Hub’s Ensemble Lead for Mid and West Cornwall, as part of its commitment to support singing in schools.  

Image of a Childrens choir

Posted on 19 April 2018

Categories: Councils, Politics

Orion stargazing evening celebrates Bodmin Moor International Dark Sky Landscape

Cornwall Council - Latest News - Thu, 19/04/2018 - 15:50

There’s a chance to experience the incredibly dark night sky of Bodmin Moor at a free stargazing evening focusing on the wonders of the constellation Orion.  The stargazing evening will be led by Caradon Observatory and takes place on Saturday 17 February at Jamaica Inn.                  

The evening is one of a series showcasing the exceptional quality of the night sky over Bodmin Moor, which was designated as an International Dark Sky Landscape in 2017 after a successful bid by Cornwall Council and Caradon Observatory. 

From 6.30pm there will be a free stargazing session, which is open to everyone.  At 7.00pm there will be a dinner event – carvery and dessert with a talk and a demonstration for £16.50 per person. Please call Jamaica Inn on 01566 86250 to book dinner.  The dinner will be followed by another free stargazing session from 8.30pm onwards.

The first free stargazing session will start at 6.30pm with an array of telescopes, including a 12 inch telescope on loan from First Light Optics in Exeter.  Weather permitting, there will be the opportunity to see Orion the hunter, one of the best known constellations in the winter sky.

The dinner event starts at 7.00pm and will include an introduction to Bodmin Moor’s International Dark Sky Landscape designation and a talk on star formation in Orion with examples of stellar nurseries, nebulae and stars that will one day go supernova.  There will also be a chance to see the Magic Planet, an interactive globe that depicts the topography of planets, and a question and answer session.

Outside observing will continue after the dinner event at 8.30pm with further opportunities to see Orion, which includes two of the brightest stars in the night sky, Rigel and Betelgeuse.  People should wrap up warm and keep their fingers crossed for clear skies. 

Dr Wayne Thomas from Caradon Observatory said: “Orion dominates the winter sky and is one of the most recognisable star patterns.  From the incredible Betelgeuse to the iconic Horsehead Nebula and the jewel in the crown, the Orion Nebula, there is always something to capture the imagination.  Come and experience it at its best from Bodmin Moor’s dark skies.”

Sue James, Cornwall Council Cabinet Member for Environment and Public Protection, said: “Bodmin Moor was the first Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty to become an International Dark Sky Landscape, and other Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty are now asking us for advice on how to protect their dark skies from light pollution.  It’s wonderful to think that what we have achieved here in Cornwall could be replicated elsewhere, ensuring that future generations will be able to continue to enjoy the beauty of the stars.”

To book a place at the dinner event, ring Jamaica Inn on 01566 86250.  There’s no need to book in advance for the free stargazing sessions, and people are welcome to drop in for the first session, which runs from 6.30pm to 7.00pm, or the second session from 8.30pm.

Story posted 2 February 2018

Categories: Councils, Politics

Council agrees unanimously to reduce charge for disabled car park spaces

Cornwall Council - Latest News - Wed, 18/04/2018 - 11:55

Cornwall Councillors voted unanimously yesterday to keep the new reduced fee of £350 for providing residential disabled parking bays in Cornwall, and endorsed the work being undertaken with disability groups to ensure that Cornwall remains in step with other local authorities when setting the charges for providing disabled parking bays in the future.

The reduced charge of £350 for residential disabled parking bays has already been implemented across Cornwall following consultation with disability groups. Thirty-six new applications have been received since the fee was changed.

In the longer term, Councillors agreed that the disabled parking application process should be updated in consultation with Disability Groups, to align with the governments new Personal Independence Payment Scheme. They also agreed that future charges will take into account similar comparisons with neighbouring authorities in the region.

Cornwall Council cabinet member for Transport, Geoff Brown said: "This means we will be able to offer our disabled residents the opportunity to put in place disabled parking spaces close to their homes, where there is a justified need, at a cost of £350. This is in line with or slightly less than many other local authorities. We will continue to work with local disability groups to review our policy and do the very best we can to support our disabled community."

Councillor Brown also confirmed that four applicants who had recently been charged more than the £350 charge will be refunded the excess as soon as possible.

Story posted 18 April 2018

Categories: Councils, Politics

Members agree to provide up to £3million to help fund a Stadium for Cornwall

Cornwall Council - Latest News - Wed, 18/04/2018 - 11:47

Cornwall Council today agreed to provide up to £3million of capital funding to support building a Stadium for Cornwall which will be a multi-use sports, education, business, health and community facility and the permanent home for the Cornish Pirates and Truro City Football Club.  

The Stadium for Cornwall project will contribute to wider economic and social benefits to residents in encouraging people to take part in sport and physical activity across Cornwall. It will also safeguard the survival of the sports clubs as well as bring additional benefits to the college as they establish a new education and training centre for catering, hospitality, sport, leisure and health, together with a business, conference and hospitality centre.

There were 69 votes for, 41 against and 7 abstentions as the majority of members agreed to provide previously unallocated money from its Economic Development Match funding pot to support the delivery of the Stadium for Cornwall by August 2019, in time for the beginning of the academic year and rugby and football seasons.  

Cornwall Council cabinet member for Planning and Economy Bob Egerton said: “This decision recognises the wider benefits that a Stadium for Cornwall will bring to the whole of Cornwall. This is money that is set aside to support infrastructure to help grow the wider economy of Cornwall - it is not money that we are in any way diverting from delivering day to day services.”

Members also agreed that the Council helps with preparing, submitting and supporting a bid to the Government for a further £3 million to deliver the Stadium for Cornwall.

Bob Egerton added: “I want to thank our six Cornish MPs for the support that they have given to this project. We will also be submitting a business case requesting a similar figure from central government. We know that this funding is not guaranteed, but we will continue to work with the MPs and we are hopeful that it can be achieved.”

In January 2018, the three partners leading the Stadium for Cornwall project, Truro and Penwith College, Cornish Pirates and Truro City Football Club, made a request to Cornwall Council for up to £6m of capital funding to add to the £8 million already raised by the private sector for the £14m development.

The partnership has been extended to include Greenwich Leisure Limited (GLL) to incorporate a Health and Fitness Centre as part of the Stadium complex. It will be open to the public and will provide the base from which health, wellbeing and community activities will be run by GLL, who have considerable experience in operating similar programmes in other parts of the country and who already deliver leisure services on behalf of the Council.

The partners will also be establishing a community sports fund, to be administered by the Cornwall Sports Partnership, to improve sports facilities across Cornwall.

In making their decision to support the building of the Stadium for Cornwall, Council members have made it clear that no further public funding will be available for the project and that partners alone will be responsible for any additional construction costs. There will be no public funding for running the stadium. Partners will be responsible for covering any additional construction costs and operating costs and this will be incorporated into the conditions of the Council providing the capital funding.

The full report is available on the Council website – agenda item 9.2

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Posted on 17 April

Categories: Councils, Politics

More reception age children in Cornwall offered their first preference school this year

Cornwall Council - Latest News - Mon, 16/04/2018 - 12:17

Parents of reception age children across Cornwall found out today which school their child has been allocated for September, with the majority being offered their first preference.

Cornwall Council received 5,486 applications for reception places for pupils to start school in September 2018. Of those, 5221 (95.2%) have been offered a place at their first preference school, an increase on last year’s figure of 93.4%.

Nearly 99% of applicants have been offered a place at a school they named as one of three preferences on their application form. In light of the increasing pressure on primary school places across the country this is good news for children and families in Cornwall.

“We’re pleased so many children and families have the news they wanted on National Offer Day,” said Sally Hawken, the Council’s Cabinet Member for Children and Wellbeing.

“Thanks go to the School Admissions Team for their hard work in co-ordinating this process and to schools for their support in ensuring as many children as possible attend their preferred school.” 

Cornwall Council recognises, however, that some families may be disappointed by their allocation for this September. Areas in Cornwall experiencing particular pressure on reception places this year include Newquay and Bude. 

Cornwall has 226 schools with reception classes and this year 72 of those are full after the first round of allocations compared to 92 at this time last year.

“Cornwall Council will continue to plan for the demand on places to ensure as many children as possible can go to their preferred school now and in the future,” said Sharon Hindley, Head of Education Access and Sufficiency.

The number of oversubscribed schools is expected to increase as late applications for places are processed over the next few weeks.  Late applications are always a concern for the Council as they reduce the chance of families getting a preferred school. The School Admissions Team, in partnership with the Family Information Service, works hard each year to get the message out to families through various channels including social media and early years settings, but they have still received more than 130 late applications so far this year.

Posted on 16 April

Categories: Councils, Politics

Council welcomes latest milestone in partnership to bring twice hourly rail service to Cornish mainline

Cornwall Council - Latest News - Fri, 13/04/2018 - 16:52

Plans for a twice hourly rail service on the Cornish mainline are firmly on track with testing now underway of the new fleet of High Speed Trains which will help double the number of services currently available.

Cornwall Council has welcomed the fleet’s arrival as a major milestone in the transformation of rail services in Cornwall. GWR announced this week that the High Speed Trains (HSTs) – four carriage Class 43 Castle trains which have been converted from eight carriage vehicles - will come into service from next month.

The announcement comes as Network Rail continues its extensive upgrade to signalling on the mainline railway – improvements to infrastructure which will enable the new HST fleet to run the half hourly service later this year, explained Councillor Geoff Brown, Cornwall Council cabinet member for Transport.

“This project is an important part of our investment in Cornwall and will benefit our economy by bringing more people into the county” he said. “This is a very exciting time for rail in Cornwall. We have the signalling work on our mainline, which will create the capacity for the new fleet of HSTs and Intercity Express Trains to enter service later this year which will seetrains leaving Penzance for Plymouth twice an hour and stopping at stations along the way.

“As a Council we are committed to working with partners to improve Cornwall’s public transport network and provide regular, reliable services for residents and visitors and this is a key elements of our One Public Transport System for Cornwall project, providing a fully integrated and sustainable public transport network and delivering an integrated SMART ticketing system for bus, rail and ferry.”

GWR Commercial Development Director Matthew Golton said: “These trains will replace smaller, less powerful trains on this part of the network; doubling the number of seats – as part of our commitment to improving rolling stock across every part of our network. They will work alongside new Intercity Express Trains; helping us to double the frequency of services into and out of Cornwall and improve capacity on suburban commuter services.”

Mike Gallop, Director of Route Safety and Asset Management, for Network Rail, said:  “Passengers and communities in the South West will see rail travel transformed from next year as huge investment into both railway infrastructure and the new Intercity Express Trains transforms the railway.

“As part of our Railway Upgrade Plan, Network Rail is undertaking track renewals and signalling upgrades in Devon and Cornwall to improve the reliability and resilience of the railway. This work will enable GWR to run two services per hour between Plymouth and Penzance from 2019, which will not only transform journeys for passengers but will also support economic growth in the area.”

Mark Duddridge, Chairman the Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Local Enterprise Partnership, said: “The LEP is investing more than £20 million of Local Growth funding to upgrade our rail network, including new signalling, enhanced sleeper service, new train care centre at Penzance and Wifi in Cornish stations. Good connectivity is vital to growing our economy and we look forward to the new half hourly service on the mainline later this year.”

The £400m programme of improvements for rail services in Cornwall is the result of a partnership between Cornwall Council, the Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Local Enterprise Partnership, the Department for Transport, GWR and Network Rail.

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Story posted: 28 March 2018

Categories: Councils, Politics

Wadebridge and Padstow Community Network Panel meeting to discuss new Community Network Highways Scheme

Cornwall Council - Latest News - Fri, 13/04/2018 - 13:17

There’s a chance for people in the Wadebridge and Padstow area to find out about the new Community Network Highways Scheme at the Wadebridge and Padstow Community Network Panel meeting on Thursday 19 April.

The meeting takes place at 7.00pm in Egloshayle Pavilion, Wadebridge.  The agenda and more information about the panel are available on our Wadebridge and Padstow Community Network page.

The Community Network Highways Scheme will give community network panels a greater influence over local and major transport schemes.  Community network panels will be able to review and prioritise local schemes and will have a budget of £50,000 for highways improvements in their area.

The meeting will include a discussion about Community Speed Watch schemes, which aim to engage and educate speeding drivers.  Teams of trained volunteers and sometimes police officers or community support officers monitor traffic from the roadside in speeding hot spots.  Speeding vehicles are recorded and warning letters are sent to the vehicle owner together with educational information.

A representative from the Wadebridge, St Breock and Egloshayle Neighbourhood Development Plan steering group will also be on hand to answer questions about the draft plan relating to the wider network area.

In addition to this, there will be updates from the police, Cornwall Council members and town and parish councillors on local matters.

Cornwall Councillor Karen McHugh, Chair of Wadebridge and Padstow Community Network Panel, said: “We know there are concerns about speeding in the Wadebridge and Padstow area, particularly around schools. Community Speed Watch schemes are one way communities can take action, so come along and find out how you could get involved.  We’ll also be talking about the new Community Network Highways Scheme, the neighbourhood development plan and other local matters.  Everyone is welcome to attend.”

Wadebridge and Padstow Community Network Panel meets quarterly to discuss matters that affect the local area and to progress these by working in partnership with Cornwall Council and its partners, including town and parish councils, the voluntary and community sector, and the police and health services.  The panel’s priorities include public transport, asset and service devolution, affordable housing, highways, traffic and parking issues.

Wadebridge and Padstow Community Network Panel includes all five Cornwall Councillors for the area and representatives of the 14 parishes in the community network: Egloshayle, Padstow, St Breock, St Endellion, St Ervan, St Eval, St Issey, St Kew, St Mabyn, St Merryn, St Minver Highlands, St Minver Lowlands, St Tudy and Wadebridge.

Story posted 13 April 2018

Categories: Councils, Politics

Communities get more say on local road projects

Cornwall Council - Latest News - Fri, 13/04/2018 - 12:17

More decisions on spending for small highway schemes will now be made locally thanks to a new arrangement which gives Community Network Panels around Cornwall a budget for 20mph signs outside schools, parking controls, dropped kerbs and improvements for pedestrians.

Each Community Network Panel will be given a budget totaling £50,000 a year as part of this new council initiative which will see £1 million a year spent on these local transport priorities.

Portfolio Holder for Transport Councillor Geoff Brown said: “Local people know local needs best. We said we will be a listening Council, and that we wanted to increase local decision making – here is the proof.”

Portfolio Holder for Neighbourhoods Councillor Edwina Hannaford, said: “It’s great for local communities to be able to drive highway improvements based on local need. We know what a difference this funding could make and look forward to seeing the Community Network Groups spend their budget in a way that’s tailored to their specific areas.”

“This is a tangible way to improve the place where we live and encourages the community to get involved.”

Along with this transport funding being transferred to Cornwall Network Panels so they can spend on small local highway schemes, each panel will also be able to put forward one new Traffic Regulation Order (TRO) each year to improve things like yellow lines in their area. This TRO will be funded by Cornwall Council and will not affect their £50,000 annual spend on highways schemes.

All ideas for local highway projects are to be decided by Community Network Panels by the end of 2018, with new schemes in place by the end of spring 2019.

Story posted 13 April 2018

Categories: Councils, Politics

Free Galaxy of Stars evening celebrates International Dark Sky Week

Cornwall Council - Latest News - Thu, 12/04/2018 - 17:51

There’s an opportunity to experience the incredibly dark night sky of Bodmin Moor at a free Galaxy of Stars evening as part of International Dark Sky Week (15-21 April). 

The stargazing evening will be led by Caradon Observatory and starts at 7.30pm on Friday 20 April at Siblyback Lake near Liskeard (PL14 6ER).         

The evening is one of a series showcasing the exceptional quality of the night sky over Bodmin Moor, which was designated as an International Dark Sky Landscape in 2017 after a successful bid by Cornwall Council and Caradon Observatory. 

The evening begins with talks on what galaxies are and how they are formed, followed by interactive activities to help people understand the importance of Bodmin Moor’s designation as an International Dark Sky Landscape.

After the sun sets around 8.30pm, there will be a chance to view the night sky through large telescopes.  Weather permitting, there may be a glimpse of a crescent Venus and an opportunity to hunt for some galaxies as the evening grows darker.  If it’s cloudy, people will still be able to enjoy the Magic Planet, an interactive globe showing the topography of planets, and a question and answer session with the astronomers.

The onsite café, the Rock Hopper, will be open until 9.00pm for drinks and food, and meals can be booked in advance on 01579 343448.

Dr Wayne Thomas from Caradon Observatory said: “Come and experience the fantastic views from Bodmin Moor’s dark sky with us.  There will be a beautiful crescent moon and plenty of galaxies in the southern sky will be visible through a telescope.  So come along, wrap up warm and keep your fingers crossed for clear skies.”

Sue James, Cornwall Council Cabinet Member for Environment and Public Protection, said: “International Dark Sky Week is an annual worldwide event drawing attention to issues associated with light pollution and the simple things we can all do to help protect our beautiful night sky and view of the stars.  This includes things like turning lights off when they aren’t needed, installing lights that point down instead of up and only lighting where you need to.  I would encourage everyone to think about how they can protect our night skies.”

For more information about the Galaxy of Stars evening, email South West Lakes Trust at info@swlakestrust.org.uk or ring 01579 346522.

There’s also a Deep Space triple bill at Sterts Theatre near Liskeard on 21 April celebrating our connection to the stars as part of International Dark Sky Week.

Story posted 12 April 2018

Categories: Councils, Politics

Six more Safer Towns launched across Cornwall to tackle community safety

Cornwall Council - Latest News - Thu, 12/04/2018 - 17:07

The Safer Towns scheme is set to be extended across six more towns in Cornwall to improve community safety.

The four Safer Towns partnerships already in existence - St Austell, Newquay, Truro and Penzance – will be complemented by Falmouth, Bodmin, Camborne, Redruth, Liskeard and Saltash from this month. So far in 2017/18, the Partnership has co-ordinated effective multi-disciplinary operations in Truro, Newquay, St Austell and Penzance responding to specific community problems. These responses have provided a balance of enforcement to address immediate crime and safety concerns, and provided targeted and intensive support to individuals with the aim of achieving longer term, sustainable positive outcomes.

The Safer Towns will be accountable to the Safer Cornwall Partnership. Safer Cornwall is a partnership of public, voluntary, community and private organisations who come together to do all that they can to make Cornwall’s communities safer. They are a virtual organisation providing a co-ordinated response to community safety issues, drawing together all those organisations and people that can make a difference.

The Police and Crime Commissioner Alison Hernandez has committed £50,000 to kick start the extended programme, with the funding used to target crime and disorder issues in each town. 

Organisations in towns where the model is already operating work in partnership with each other to improve community safety and reduce crime and anti-social behaviour. Persistent problem places and people are targeted, with initiatives put in place to work with communities, partners and the business and voluntary sectors to develop sustainable solutions.

The work in each Safer Town is designed to match the needs of each community and will be based on local town profiles.

Over the next ten days, each town will have a launch event to raise awareness and demonstrate to the community that partner agencies are committed to tackling local issues.

Events range from leaflet drops and walkabouts, which give residents and businesses the chance to voice their concerns and influence what changes they would like made, through to town workshops to identify local priorities and actions.

Cornwall Council Cabinet Member for Neighbourhoods Sue James said: “In Cornwall we have lower levels of crime so it is generally a safe place to live. However, we know different communities have their own specific concerns that make them feel unsafe. We are keen to work with communities to tackle anti-social behaviour and community safety issues worrying them so as to stop them from escalating and affecting the quality of people’s lives. I want the partnerships to make a real difference in each of the towns being targeted for improvement.”

Cornwall Council’s 2017 resident survey found 86% of people who responded to the survey said they felt safe outside in their local area during the day, and 64% after dark. Twenty percent of respondents reported they felt unsafe after dark.

Police and Crime Commissioner Alison Hernandez said: ”I applaud the community safety partnership and its partnership approach to deal with community safety based issues relating to street drinking and drugs and street attachment,” said Ms Hernandez.

“A significant amount of work has already gone on in St Austell, Newquay, Penzance and Truro involving agencies, town councils and businesses and I am encouraged by the way businesses and charitable groups have joined statutory partners to find solutions.

“I hope the money I am giving will be used by each group to aid practical initiatives and innovation.”

“This investment is focused on particular towns but its benefit will be felt throughout Cornwall.”

Chief Fire Officer Paul Walker, Chair of Safer Cornwall and Director of Resilient Cornwall said, “Safer Towns are a fantastic example of communities working together to make Cornwall safer; where residents influence the focus of activities in the place that is important to them. We really welcome the Police and Crime Commissioner’s support and continued recognition of the partnership approach in Cornwall”.

Police Commander for Cornwall Chief Superintendent Jim Pearce said: “Safer Towns reflects Devon and Cornwall Police’s ethos in putting people and places at the heart of all what we do. We are already beginning to realise the benefits that working together, the public sector with the communities and residents, have achieved in existing Safer Towns like Newquay. We are fully committed to supporting the new Safer Towns”.

If you would like to be part of your local Safer Town initiative or want to find out more please email communitysafety@cornwall.gov.uk

Posted on 12 April

Categories: Councils, Politics

New out of town parking for Penzance

Cornwall Council - Latest News - Wed, 11/04/2018 - 17:49

A new car park has now opened in Penzance to provide convenient and safe out of town car parking which will both encourage tourism and reduce pressure for on street parking in the town. 

Next to Sainsbury’s and accessed via Jelbert Way the new car park, which will provide 157 car parking spaces, 11 disabled parking spaces and eight coach bays, is in the perfect location to provide parking for Scillonian ferry passengers travelling to the Isles of Scilly as well as visitors to Penzance.

The new out of town car park will benefit Penzance in a number of ways; it offsets the loss of the Isles of Scilly parking at Wherrytown car park, which is now being developed by providing a parking facility at a more strategic location on approach to the town from the A30, and helps to reduce pressure for on street parking in the town. 

In addition, the provision of eight coach parking bays will encourage tourism and coach trips to the town.

The car park will be managed by the Isles of Scilly Parking Company, a local business independent of the Isles of Scilly Steamship Company, and is now open for pre booked parking for visitors to the Isles of Scilly until 5 November.

In addition to parking for visitors to the Isles of Scilly, further facilities are planned to enable a park and ride using the regular bus service from Jelbert Way to Penzance bus station which runs every 15 minutes. 

Anticipated opening hours will be from 08:30 until 18:30, 6 days a week (7 days a week in July and August.)

The car park is well connected to Mounts Bay via a pedestrian crossing on the A30 and footbridge, and it’s expected that some visitors will decide to use the route around Mounts bay to access both Penzance and Marazion on foot.

To introduce the service an open day will be held on Saturday 21 April and Saturday parking for the first month will be free for park and ride customers using the scheduled bus service into Penzance. 

Councillor Brown, Cornwall Council Portfolio Holder for Transport, said: “Historically visitors using the Scillonian, have had to travel into Penzance town to park their vehicles which led to traffic congestion problems.

“It is hoped that this new car park, which is in a convenient out of town location close to the A30, will help improve traffic flow around Penzance town centre and also encourage visitors to an already popular destination.”

Mario Fonk, Cornwall Councillor for Gulval and Heamoor, said: “I am pleased to hear that the car park, which I believe will be an excellent benefit for the town residents and visitors, is now complete. I hope that it will encourage more visitors to Penzance as it will reduce the pressure on parking in the town.”

Simon Elliott, Cornwall Councillor for Ludgvan, added “It is good to see the car-park being finally put to good use. Having spoken to Isles of Scilly Parking, I know they want to work with the community to see it used effectively. Hopefully visitors to the Isles will prefer to park safely in this corner of Ludgvan Parish rather than in the Penzance streets nearest to the Harbour.”

CORMAC, on behalf of Cornwall Council, began works last year on land owned by the Sainsbury’s supermarket chain. Development of the land was one of the conditions on which planning permission was granted for their store, which is based just off the A30.

For more information, or to pre-book a space, visit the Isles of Scilly Parking Company website.

Story posted 11 April 2018

Categories: Councils, Politics

Council to undertake Farms Strategy Inquiry

Cornwall Council - Latest News - Tue, 10/04/2018 - 15:34

Cornwall Council’s Neighbourhoods Overview and Scrutiny Committee will be seeking the views of residents and organisations across Cornwall as they undertake a review of the Council’s Farms Strategy.

The wide ranging review is set to determine the future direction and operation of the Council’s Farm Estate, including the setting of clear environmental standards and making sure the Farm Estate plays its part in helping to deliver Cornwall’s priorities for environmental growth, prosperity and health.

The public are invited to attend to observe sessions where representatives from different organisations and backgrounds will be invited to answer questions that will be posed by the Inquiry Members.  The responses captured at the sessions will help Members make recommendations on the way forward.

Councillor Martyn Alvey will lead the review, alongside Councillors Fairman, Luke, Olivier and Rule. Councillor Alvey said: "Many residents of Cornwall are surprised to hear that Cornwall Council is one of the largest owners of farmland in the County; currently with 99 farm holdings.  These historic holdings, which date back to the countries post-war recovery, form a vital component of Cornwall's rural economy and provide an important point of access to the industry for those aspiring to run their own farm.  This inquiry is essential to ensure that the County Farm Estate and its tenants are able to continue to meet the challenges of current farming practices whilst ensuring exemplary environmental stewardship of our precious countryside."

Inquiry members are keen to hear from members of the public and other organisations as soon as possible on what the outcomes of the objectives could potentially be. 

If you would like to make a submission or to find out more, please email neighbourhoodsosc@cornwall.gov.uk

The deadline for submissions is Friday 25 May 2018.

The inquiry days will be held at New County Hall in Truro

  • Monday 16 April 2018 – from 1.00pm
  • Thursday 26 April 2018 – from 9.30am
  • Friday 27 April 2018 – from 1.00pm
  • Wednesday 30 May 2018 – from 9.30am
  • Thursday 31 May 2018 – from 9.30am
  • Wednesday 13 June 2018 – from 9.30am
  • Tuesday 19 June 2018 – from 9.30am 

Story posted 10 April 2018

Categories: Councils, Politics

Help keep Cornwall free from roadside litter

Cornwall Council - Latest News - Tue, 10/04/2018 - 15:05

Did you know you can be fined £80 if you or your passenger throw rubbish from your car window or dump it in a layby?

Every year Highways England and local councils spend hundreds of millions of pounds clearing drinks bottles and cans, food and fast food packaging, takeaway cups, plastic and paper bags and cigarette related litter from roadsides and verges.

However not only is roadside litter an eyesore, picking it up, especially on high speed roads such as the A30, A38 and A39, means that the workforce are exposed to unnecessary and avoidable danger. It can also be a danger to other road users and to wildlife.

Research shows that people are most likely to litter when walking or travelling in a vehicle. It seems that when in a vehicle people feel less accountable and identifiable. We are very proud of Cornwall’s beautiful environment and are committed to reducing the amount of litter which can deter economic activity and investment.

Sue James, Cornwall Council’s Cabinet Member for Environment and Public Protection, said “Cornwall is one of the most beautiful areas of the country with outstanding scenery, historic towns and wonderful beaches. What a shame a minority of people spoil it with litter that could so easily be taken home or put in bins. It’s especially disappointing to see litter thrown from vehicles.

“Removing unsightly litter from road sides and verges costs money which could have been spent on other Council services.

“Recently we have removed a lot of vegetation on the verges next to some of our roads so the problem has become more visible for residents and road users. We have a regular programme of litter picking on both the trunk roads managed by Highways England, and the roads we are responsible for. We also liaise with CORMAC on any planned roadworks so teams can litter pick at the same time. This reduces the cost to the Council and also the inconvenience to road users.

“However the reality is that this problem would almost disappear overnight if the litterbugs acted more responsibly so we are calling on people to reflect on their actions and do the right thing and take their litter home with them rather than disposing it on the roads”.

Dropping litter is a criminal offence under Section 87 of the Environmental Protection Act 1990. While our preference is to work with people, authorised officers can currently issue fixed penalty notices of £80 for littering offences. This amount is due to increase to £150 later this year. Failure to pay may result in a prosecution before a Magistrates Court where the maximum fine is currently £2,500. Changes to the law last year means that we can apply these litter penalties to vehicle owners if it can be proved the rubbish was thrown from their car, van or lorry, even if was discarded by a passenger.

Wherever possible we investigate reported offences with a view to taking action against offenders to reduce the level of environmental crime. Ultimately we rely on people reporting issues that they witness in their community for us to be able to take action.

“It’s up to all of us to play a more active role in catching offenders” said Sue James. “It is only when those that litter believe they will get caught that this anti-social behaviour will reduce” .

Anyone who sees someone throwing litter from a vehicle or dumping it in a layby in Cornwall can report it to the Council at
envhealthandlicensing@cornwall.gov.uk

Individuals and businesses can also help to do their bit by taking part in Keep Britain Tidy Campaign’s Great British Spring Clean which runs from 2 – 4 March 2018  www.keepbritaintidy.org/our-cause/cut-litter or supporting Clean Cornwall who stage regular litter picks across Cornwall.

Story 23 February 2018

 

Categories: Councils, Politics

First homes benefit from central heating scheme

Cornwall Council - Latest News - Tue, 10/04/2018 - 15:05

The first of hundreds of homes are already starting to feel warmer as work begins on an £8 million pound programme to install new central heating systems. 

Warm and Well Cornwall opened applications to Cornwall’s residents in November with over 100 leads and 39 residents are now starting to benefit from first time central heating in their homes.  The Winter Wellbeing Partnership (1) aims to improve over 1000 homes by January 2019.  

Today (Friday 23rd Feb) marks National Fuel Poverty Awareness Day. Around 36,000 homes in Cornwall are in fuel poverty, with Cornwall in the top 10 of fuel poor areas in England (2). 

Winter Wellbeing launched an £8m project called Warm and Well Cornwall to our residents in November.  Warm and Well Cornwall offers free central heating systems for homes which currently use expensive or ineffective heating, such as solid fuel heaters or electric night storage systems. The funding will be used to insulate homes and help residents stay warmer for less. 

To be eligible residents need to be; living in a cold or damp home, struggling to pay energy bills, at risk of ill health, on a low income or a carer. Anyone who thinks they might be eligible should get in touch. 

Cornwall Council Deputy Leader Julian Germansaid: “Fuel poverty is an issue for many of our residents in Cornwall. In 2018, no-one should have to choose between heating and eating, so we are doing what we can to address this inequality by lifting people out of fuel poverty.

 “The Devolution Deal has had a part to play in this much needed scheme. New ways of delivering insulation improvements to Cornish homes agreed with the Government means we have more control over the decisions on which homes can receive this support.” 

Dr Caroline Court, Interim Director of Wellbeing and PublicHealthsaid “Fuel poverty doesn’t just mean that people can’t afford to pay their heating bills. There is a much wider impact. People become socially isolated because they are embarrassed to invite people over, children struggle to concentrate on homework because they’re too cold. 

“Reducing fuel poverty is about the best possible opportunities in life, and that starts with a warm home to help them stay well, and achieve the best health, wellbeing and work outcomes.” 

DCH resident Mercedes Oxley whose heating was installed in January said: “I am very pleased with the gas central heating. It has made a huge difference to us in day to day life as we can have heat as and when we need it.  We were totally delighted with the workmanship and to all at DCH on dealing with enquiries and keeping us updated as to when the work would be taking place – thank you so much!” 

Ralph Retallack, Energy Efficiency Manager at Coastline Housing added: “One of the most important things in life is a warm, comfortable home that people can afford to run and enjoy. We’re delighted to be starting another programme of work to bring this about by helping to reduce fuel bills for our customers.” 

Tony Butler, UK Sales Manager for SSE Energy Solutions added: “As their Energy Efficiency Partner, SSE Energy Solutions is proud to support Cornwall Council’s Winter Wellbeing Partnership. This exceptional group of likeminded entities, comprising 30 partners in total, all strive towards the same common goal to eliminate fuel poverty in Cornwall.  Whilst other regions share similar objectives, challenges and financial constraints to those of Cornwall, few benefit from such a well-connected group of champions, who, thanks to their input and the council’s coordination, make this partnership a truly bespoke and innovative arrangement.” 

To find out more about Warm and Well Cornwall or to check eligibility, please ‘Call Bev’ at Inclusion Cornwall on 01872 326552 or visit the Warm and Well webpage.

1 - Led by Cornwall Council and including 30 partners, along with the National Grid’s Warm Homes Fund and SSE and Cornwall’s social housing providers

2 - Latest BEIS fuel poverty statistics for 2015 data year

Story posted 23 February

Categories: Councils, Politics

Share your views at Camelford air quality exhibition

Cornwall Council - Latest News - Tue, 10/04/2018 - 15:05

Camelford businesses and residents will have the opportunity to find out more about plans to improve air quality in the town at a drop in exhibition in Clease Hall on Tuesday 6 March from 3.00pm to 7.00pm.  More information and a link to the online survey are available on our Camelford air quality page.

The exhibition is part of a two month consultation on Cornwall Council’s draft action plan to improve air quality in Camelford.  Local people are being asked to share their views on the options the Council is investigating, and staff from Cornwall Council will be on hand at the exhibition to answer any questions.    

Anyone can comment on the draft action plan proposals at the drop in exhibition, online, or by emailing cep@cornwall.gov.uk, posting their comments to the Council or handing them in at Camelford Library and One Stop Shop. 

Councils are required to monitor air quality in their area against national targets and to declare areas with poor air quality as Air Quality Management Areas.  Cornwall Council declared Camelford an Air Quality Management Area in 2017 after long term monitoring found that the Fore Street and High Street areas of the town have excessive levels of traffic related nitrogen dioxide (NO2).  The A39 is the main contributor to air pollution in Camelford, with private diesel cars contributing around 32% of the pollution, diesel light goods vehicles contributing 24% and large vehicles such as HGVs contributing 16%.  The remaining pollution comes from other types of road traffic.

Rob Rotchell, Cornwall Councillor for Camelford, said: “This is a chance for everyone in Camelford to learn about and comment on the different proposals for tackling air quality issues in our town.  We want as many local people as possible to share their views with us so we can develop the most suitable options for the Camelford.  Please come along and have your say or complete the online survey.”

Sue James, Cornwall Council’s Cabinet Member for Environment and Public Protection, said: “Our proposed actions include plans to work with vehicle fleet operators to help reduce emissions in Camelford.  However, a third of the air pollution in the town comes from private diesel cars.  I would therefore encourage everyone who drives through Camelford to think about what they can do to help improve local air quality.  If enough of us make small changes like turning off our car engines when waiting in traffic and making shorter journeys on foot, we can start to make a difference.”

As part of its Clean Air for Cornwall Strategy, Cornwall Council has already introduced a range of projects and policies to help improve air quality across Cornwall.  These include promoting walking and cycling, improving public transport, introducing car clubs, setting emission standards for taxis, minimising emissions from bus and works vehicle fleets, requiring electric vehicle charging points in new build homes, working with employers and schools to develop travel plans, and promoting mixed use development in areas close to public transport and facilities. 

Story posted 23 February 2018

Categories: Councils, Politics

Rogue roofer receives suspended prison sentence

Cornwall Council - Latest News - Tue, 10/04/2018 - 15:05

Roofer, Mark Davies, 30, of Lanivet, Bodmin was sentenced at Bodmin Magistrates yesterday for offences under the Criminal Damage Act 1971 and the Consumer Protection for Unfair Trading Regulations 2008.

In June 2017, Davies, trading as AR Property Solutions, contracted with a couple in Saltash to replace the flat roof of their garage. Work was completed but the homeowners had issues with some of the work and requested that Davies put these matters right before they made payment.

Believing that he had fitted the roof correctly, Davies took the law into his own hands and returned to the property; ripping off the roof and removing the materials that he had installed and causing further damage to the fabric of the garage.

The matter was initially reported to Devon and Cornwall Police, and then later passed to Cornwall Trading Standards for further investigation.

Davies pleaded guilty on 15 February 2018 and was sentenced yesterday (22 February 2018) to an 8 weeks custodial sentence, suspended for 12 months and 120 hours of unpaid work. He was also ordered to pay a £115 victim surcharge and full prosecution costs of £1485.

Leanne McLean, Lead Officer Doorstep Crime said, “Consumers have a legal right that work done by traders is of satisfactory quality. Where this is not the case, they have a variety of legal remedies available to them, including repair. Irrespective of whether Davies felt that the work had been completed properly, there are correct and reasonable processes to follow when dealing with such disputes. By forcibly removing the roof and causing further damage, he has committed a serious criminal offence. No professional business would have behaved in the manner in which Davies did.”

Sue James, Councillor for Neighbourhoods and Public Protection said, “This is another excellent result for our Trading Standards team and is another example of effective partnership working with Devon & Cornwall Police. Thankfully the behaviour of the trader in this incident does not reflect the majority of our professional businesses in Cornwall. It does however, highlight the need for schemes such as our “Buy With Confidence” trading standards approval scheme, giving genuine businesses a way to demonstrate their commitment to trading fairly.”

Anyone who believes they have been victim of a rogue trader should report the matter to Trading Standards via the Citizens Advice Service on 03454 040506.

Buy With Confidence is a trader approval scheme run by Trading Standards. Consumers can access the list of approved traders by visiting www.buywithconfidence.gov.uk or calling 01208 893133.

Story posted 23 February 2018

Categories: Councils, Politics

Views sought on proposed changes to care provision

Cornwall Council - Latest News - Tue, 10/04/2018 - 15:05

Cornwall Council is inviting residents, people who need care, carers, care providers and anyone with an interest in adult social care to come forward and have their say in shaping future adult care services in Cornwall.

A consultation on three key adult social care policies in Cornwall is currently underway to find what people think about the proposed changes or if the Council should change anything.

The draft Maximum Usual Price and Inflation Policy* sets out the amount the Council is usually prepared to pay suppliers for different types of social care services and the methodology used to develop the price. This policy includes charges for non-residential services, respite care and residential services.

The draft Adult Social Care Charging Policy sets out the Council’s approach to collecting contributions from people who use residential and non-residential care services, and charging for respite care and providing meals.

In addition, Adult Social Care is also publishing a draft Choice and Top Up Policy, which sets out the approach the Council will take in offering choices to meet someone's assessed needs, and when asking relatives to contribute to the cost of a care package, if the service user wishes to choose a more expensive provision or care package.

Following the consultation, all three policies will be subject to Cabinet approval at the end of March.

Rob Rotchell, Cornwall Council’s Cabinet Member for Adults said: “With a growing number of adults relying on some form of social care in Cornwall, these changes will help us to develop a fair and transparent system of charging and ensure we and our residents get the best value for money for care provided.

“We would like to know if the changes we are proposing to make to the policies are right and what people think about them. We would like to hear from anyone with an interest in care services but especially from people who receive care services, carers, service providers, Voluntary and Community Sector, and anyone else with an interest in adult social care services.

“We want as many people as possible to have their say before the policies are finalised.”

Copies of all three of the policy documents, further information and links to the consultation surveys can be found on the Council’s website: www.cornwall.gov.uk/carepolicies

The consultations close on Monday 12 March 2018.

Story posted 23 February 2018

 

Categories: Councils, Politics

Toolkits launched to combat fuel poverty and cold homes across England

Cornwall Council - Latest News - Tue, 10/04/2018 - 15:05

Cornwall Council and Citizens Advice have today launched two toolkits to tackle fuel poverty across England.

Fuel poverty is caused by a combination of low household income, inefficient housing and high energy costs. It can affect the mental and physical health of those living in cold homes and have serious impacts on their quality of life.

The toolkits were funded by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy and developed to help health services and local authorities tackle the problem of cold homes and the impact they have on health, life chances, work and wellbeing.

The latest government statistics* from 2015 show that about 2.5 million households (11%) in England were estimated to be living in fuel poverty.

Many people, worried about rising fuel bills, ration their heating use to such an extent that it has a serious impact on their physical and mental health – many have to choose to heat or eat. Every year, around 25,000 more people die over the winter months compared to the non-winter months. The most vulnerable members of society are particularly at risk – pensioners, the long-term sick or disabled, and young children.

The local authority toolkit is a call to action to work together and all ensure that as many homes as possible are energy efficient by 2030 and their occupiers are staying warmer for less. We are making it easy for anyone that comes across a cold, damp home they know where and why to refer, and be confident that their action will make a difference to people’s lives.

The health toolkit helps health professionals to identify and refer patients who are vulnerable to living in a cold home by looking beyond the initial health problem and considering the conditions which may be making the person ill.

Cold and damp homes have direct and indirect effects on health and wellbeing. The direct effects include increased incidence of heart attack, stroke, respiratory disease, influenza, falls and injuries, hypothermia. Improving warmth in our homes could reduce demand on the healthcare system. The indirect effects include mental health from depression, reduced educational and employment attainment and the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning. Every winter it is estimated the cost to the NHS is over £1bn.

Andrew Seager, Director at Citizens Advice said: “Citizens Advice helps thousands of people every year who are not able to keep their homes warm, with many saying their health suffers as a result.

"Local Citizens Advice offices are working in partnership with health services in their area to support vulnerable people. This toolkit will encourage more collaboration between Citizens Advice, local authorities and health services to assist people at risk of health problems."

Dr Caroline Court, Interim Director of Cornwall Council’s Wellbeing and Public Health team said: “Fuel poverty is a long-standing health issue and the impact of cold homes on health is evidenced and well understood. The toolkits bring together good practice from across England and Wales along with national best practice and NICE guidance for local authorities and healthcare services to help their residents and patients stay warmer for less.”

Story posted 23 February.

Categories: Councils, Politics

Fairer deal needed for Cornwall’s roads

Cornwall Council - Latest News - Tue, 10/04/2018 - 15:05

With nearly 7,500 kilometres of roads to maintain, Cornwall Council’s fair funding campaign is calling for more investment to maintain Cornwall’s roads and build economic growth for the county.

Leader of Cornwall Council Adam Paynter said: “As with other rural areas, Cornwall is at a disadvantage in deploying limited funding resources to maintain roads over such a large geographic area.

“Despite the funding constraints, Cornwall Council has carried out a major programme of upgrading and maintenance of our roads over recent years, with over one-third of the network seeing road improvements, roads that often support our smaller and medium sized businesses.”

Councillor Paynter said the state of Cornwall’s roads has a direct link to business and economic growth.

“With a thinly spread population, five hours from London, we have a challenge developing economic trade links – the road infrastructure we have is critical to bringing in tourists, new business and jobs.

“That’s why we are calling for fairing funding from government to help us maintain our roads now and in the future.

“Fairer funding for Cornwall will help ensure we can effectively maintain these roads and compete for business with other areas, especially post Brexit.”

Richard Burnett, Chief Executive of the Road Haulage Association, the organisation that represents those responsible for the movement of 90% of the UK economy, echoed calls for fairer funding allocations.

“Cornwall’s roads are a vital trade artery for the county as well as an outlet into the national and international economies. It’s simple: better roads will help businesses grow, increase employment and allow Cornwall to prosper.

“Goods which finally reach Cornwall all bear the cost of transport over hundreds of miles to get here. And every Cornish-based business with a product ends up paying steeply for the costs of transporting its goods to market,” he said.

The Council’s fair funding campaign asks residents and businesses to show their support by signing our pledge of support at www.cornwall.gov.uk/fairfunding, or showing support on Cornwall Council’s Facebook and Twitter pages.

Additional notes:

In 2016/2017 the Council spent around £40 million on maintaining and improving roads in Cornwall. We manage 7,300km of roads, 4,300km of footpaths and nearly 900 public open spaces across Cornwall, as well as bridges, street lights and signals. The total value of these assets is more than £8 billion and is the single most valuable public asset managed by the authority.

The fairer funding campaign is based on work done under the Leicestershire Model. In 2017, Leicestershire County Council developed the model, which reworks how much Cornwall would get under a fairer funding formula. This new formula allocates funding based on local factors that drive demand for local services such as the number of older people, the length of roads travelled by HGVs and the number of school age children.

The Leicestershire Model as produced by the Strategic Business Intelligence Team for Leicester County Council 2017. It redistributes from London to other authority types and with this new model County Councils are the biggest winners. Original data for this model is sourced from reliable Core Spending Power Data DCLG 2016. It is based on key local drivers such as deprivation, population, demographics, life expectancy, the economy, waste and the environment. The current Government funding model does not favour local, low economy areas such as Cornwall.

Story posted 22 February 2018

Categories: Councils, Politics
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