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Updated: 1 hour 29 min ago

New play equipment to be installed at devolved parks

Thu, 25/02/2021 - 15:36

New play equipment is to be provided at Polgover Way and Penarwyn Green in St Blazey after the parks were devolved to the local town council.

Polgover Way Public Open Space, Deeble Drive Play Area and Penawyn Road Public Open Space will now be maintained and managed by St Blaise Town Council.

The transfer of these much-loved facilities will safeguard the play provision for the town and ensure that decisions regarding the future of these assets are led by the local community. 

Pauline Giles, Cornwall Councillor for St Blazey, said: “I am delighted that the residents of St Blazey will have these spaces for many more generations to enjoy. Myself, along with the local residents and Town Council have worked hard to ensure this provision is protected. I was particularly pleased to secure a financial contribution from Cornwall Council to ensure new equipment could be installed and I look forward to seeing it in place and being used as soon as possible.”

Polgover playground

Polgover Way

June Anderson, Mayor of St Blaise, added: “St Blaise Town Council took the decision to take over these spaces to safeguard play areas for the children of the town. We will now install new equipment and manage them along with all our other assets.  This will be a great benefit for the town.”

Like all local authorities throughout the UK, Cornwall Council has had some tough decisions to make when faced with cuts in funding from central Government. Rather than close parks and public spaces, the Council has worked with town and parish councils and community groups throughout Cornwall to transfer ownership of various assets where there is a desire in an area to do so.

Councillor Edwina Hannaford, Portfolio Holder for Climate Change and Neighbourhoods, said: “There has never been a more important time for people to have access to local outdoor spaces for play and exercise to help our communities to stay fit and help ensure mental well-being. 

“This project is a fantastic step forward and is another example of how partners are working together to give local people more say and influence in the running of services that are important to the local community.

“The Town Council is to be congratulated for opting to take on the running of these sites for the benefit of their local residents.”

 

Story published on February 25, 2021

Categories: Councils, Politics

Final chance to have a say on how planning process works towards climate change aims

Thu, 25/02/2021 - 10:51

Residents and stakeholders in Cornwall are being urged to have their final say on a document that aims to ensure that planning decisions address and consider climate change. 

Cornwall Council has been developing what is known as the Climate Emergency Development Plan Document and a final six-week consultation, ending on April 16, will now be held before it is submitted to the Government. 

It is a last opportunity for people to comment on the policies that have been developed with the aim of ensuring that planning decisions in the future fully consider and respond to climate change. 

It covers policies to support green energy, enhance the environment, provide more efficient housing, greener travel and resilience to issues such as coastal change and flooding. 

Once adopted, the Climate Emergency DPD will sit alongside the Cornwall Local Plan and other policies and will be used for decision making on all development proposals. 

Solar Panels

The Council declared a climate emergency in 2019 and recognises that its planning policies – covering what can be built where and how – have a major impact on the way that places grow and change, helping to protect and shape the Cornwall of the future. 

Cornwall has a Local Plan outlining how development should be achieved and the Climate Emergency DPD has been developed to strengthen it and help address climate change. 

The aim is to make sure that future development is sustainable and helps to address climate change in every aspect of its design and construction, contributing to the Council’s aim to be net carbon-neutral by 2030. 

Tim Dwelly, Portfolio Holder for Culture, Economy and Planning, said: “This is important because we can have a big impact on our climate change ambitions through what we build and how we build it. 

“The DPD will help make sure new developments play their part in the overall picture.” 

Councillor Edwina Hannaford, the Council’s Portfolio Holder for Climate Change and Neighbourhoods, said: “We have an ambitious target to be net carbon-neutral by 2030 and, if we are to meet it as early as possible, we need to ensure that we build in a sustainable way.” 

The document can be viewed on the Climate Emergency DPD website

Feedback can be given via the website, or by email at climateemergencydpd@cornwall.gov.uk 

Alternatively, phone 0300 1234 151 or write to Climate Emergency DPD, Cornwall Council – Planning Policy, 3b Pydar House, Pydar Street, Truro, TR1 1XU, between February 26 and 5pm on April 16, 2021. 

There will also be a series of online events, as follows: Tuesday, March 16, 3.30pm to 5pm; Wednesday, March 17, 12.30pm to 2pm; Thursday, March 18, 2pm to 3.30pm and Friday, March 19, 1.30pm to 3pm. 

To register for a place at one of the sessions, email climateemergencydpd@cornwall.gov.uk 

Once the full statutory process is concluded, including an Examination in Public, the Climate Emergency DPD will become an adopted planning document, meaning that proposed future development will be assessed against stronger policies that protect the environment. 

Categories: Councils, Politics

Cornwall and Scilly’s Nature Partnership appoint first ever CEO

Thu, 25/02/2021 - 09:54

With a widely acknowledged crisis in biodiversity and the natural world, the Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Local Nature Partnership (CIoSLNP) has appointed its first Chief Executive Officer. 

The new CEO, Peter Marsh, will retain his responsibilities in Cornwall Council as Service Director for the environment, but will also take on the new role of Chief Executive Officer for the Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Local Nature Partnership. 

Peter said: “I am delighted to take on this new role for the Local Nature Partnership. We are at a critical juncture in our history where leadership is required to put in place the actions required to repair and grow our natural places, and I intend to ensure that this new role is at the heart of that.” 

Peter Marsh1

Nature partnership chair, Lord Robin Teverson said: “We face a crisis in the natural world with a major decline in nature. It’s a challenge as big as climate change. And it is just as much a challenge in Cornwall and Scilly as it is in the tropics and the rainforests. Different animals and plants but still the same decline in nature 

“That is why it’s so vital that Cornwall and Scilly’s Local Nature Partnership steps up its work to put that decline into reverse. If we fail then we will not have the insects to pollinate our crops, healthy soils to grow them, or sufficient trees to take carbon out of our atmosphere. 

“The appointment of Peter as our first chief executive will give us that extra focus to drive our fight back for nature. It means we can work more closely with all our many partners in Cornwall and Scilly who have the same agenda.” 

Categories: Councils, Politics

Explore your local community with our active travel maps

Wed, 24/02/2021 - 22:47

Residents can find out more about walking and cycling routes in their local area with a series of maps aimed at helping us to stay active and explore our communities.

Produced by Cornwall Council, in partnership with Sustrans, the maps highlight traffic free cycle routes and shared paths and also give an indication of how long it will take to walk or cycle.

Maps are available for Bodmin; Camborne, Pool, Redruth and Illogan; Falmouth; Hayle, St Erth and St Ives; Saltash; St Austell, St Blazey and Par; and Truro.

Find an Active Travel Map

Councillor Geoff Brown, Cornwall Council cabinet portfolio holder for transport, said: “With lockdown curtailing trips further afield, the active travel maps are a good reminder that there can be lots to explore from our own doorstep.

“Not taking the car for that local journey not only has obvious health benefits but also improves air quality.”

Dave Davies, Sustrans active travel officer, said; “These maps provide a great way to plan our journeys more actively. It’ll be useful for people planning their journeys, to schools, colleges and workplaces when the Covid restrictions are lifted. I would like to thank the communities involved for their support and local knowledge in creating our active travel maps.”

A new active travel map for Newquay is expected to be available later this spring, as well as updates to the Falmouth and Penryn and Truro maps. The Camborne, Pool, Redruth and Illogan map has recently been updated to combine previous separate maps for the area and includes new cycling and walking infrastructure.

Categories: Councils, Politics

Green projects in Launceston and Bude to benefit from funding boost

Wed, 24/02/2021 - 15:16

Image of people walking in a field of wildflowers

Community projects in Launceston and Bude aimed at promoting a greener world are set to benefit through grants delivered by Cornwall Council.  

As announced in January, 14 projects around Cornwall have been given funding from a new Council scheme.  

The Community Infrastructure Levy Fund is backing projects that support low-carbon infrastructure.  

In the Launceston and Bude areas, four such projects are set to benefit.  

Launceston Community Development Trust will receive £35,000 for the planting and landscaping of a community orchard, creating a connected hub with community buildings and providing the site with drainage to reduce flood risk.  

The project also includes maintenance and protection of existing and newly planted trees and hedgerows.  

Trust chair, Margaret Young, said: “We are getting closer and closer to being able to develop a local site and add to the open space in Launceston – creating our very own Community Orchard. The CIL funding awarded will go a long way to helping us make this a reality.” 

Budehaven Community School will get £45,702 for a wildlife garden and a sustainable structure to provide accommodation for pupils at risk of exclusion.  

Headteacher Dom Wilkes said: “With the help of Bude Coastal Communities Trust members Ian Saltern and Rob Uhlig, we wrote a CIL funding bid to provide an additional intervention space for pupils at risk of exclusion from school.  

“From initial discussions, we conceived the idea of a log cabin on site, called ‘The Oasis’, which would allow our current skilled staff to work with individuals and small groups of children to build their social and emotional resilience and provide strategies to cope with the challenges our young people face.” 

The space will be heated using a solar-powered air source heat pump, ensuring carbon neutrality. 

In addition, The Blanchminster Trust has donated money to construct a sensory garden to surround The Oasis. 

Dom said he was “delighted that we are able to now plan and build this facility” and thanked all those involved.  

Image of someone getting into a car

Co Cars Ltd has been granted £58,000 to provide two electric cars, which can be hired by the hour, with EV charging, plus two public charging points in Bude.  

Mark Hodgson, Managing Director of Co Cars, said: “I’m delighted we’re bringing our shared, zero emission electric Co Cars to Bude, along with fast charging points for use by the general public. 

“Together, they will help lay the foundations for an on-demand, affordable transport network that will help connect residents to employment, education, healthcare and other essential amenities. 

“Because they are zero emission and shared, they will also help tackle the town’s congestion and pollution problems, further bolstering its reputation for community-led, environmental action.” 

Photo of a building

The 2 Minute Foundation, which is a charity devoted to “cleaning up the planet two minutes at a time”, through encouraging people to do quick beach cleans, litter picks, street cleans and more, will benefit from £32,576 to convert an old beach office and toilets at Bude into an education centre with a community hub and office space. 

CEO Martin Dorey said: “The building will become a centre for our eco community here in Bude and a base for our new Beach School, as well as provide hot desking for our 10 staff.  

“We’ll also be aiming to showcase the best in new and retrofit technology so that everyone can see that doing their bit doesn’t have to be for other people.” 

Tim Dwelly, the Council’s Portfolio Holder for Culture, Economy and Planning, said: “This new scheme was designed to be all about projects that are based on a low-carbon way of thinking to give their communities a greener future. 

“I’m really looking forward to seeing how these organisations in Launceston and Bude put the money to good use to make a real difference.”  

Edwina Hannaford, Portfolio Holder for Climate Change and Neighbourhoods, said: “The projects we have chosen reflect the Council’s ambitions to tackle climate change and be carbon-neutral by 2030. 

“We’re confident that all four of these will make a positive contribution to that aim and I look forward to seeing the impact they have. I’d like to thank the communities of Launceston and Bude for their hard work and innovation in tackling climate change.” 

Since January 2019 the Council has been charging developers the Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) as a way to reduce any potential adverse cumulative impacts resulting from new housing and other building projects.  

CIL payments are set aside to be spent on infrastructure projects to benefit communities and support development. Between 15 to 25 per cent of the levy goes to the town or parish council where the development has taken place.  

Last summer the Council invited organisations to bid for a slice of £500,000 to pay for infrastructure projects that encourage greener and healthier lifestyles.  

Now the process has been completed, the total support provided by the CIL Fund could rise to £622,939, depending on whether some projects secure match-funding from elsewhere.  

Categories: Councils, Politics

Are your children safe online?

Tue, 23/02/2021 - 15:28

Cornwall Council and the Safeguarding Children’s Partnership is renewing calls for parents to be aware of online dangers as young people return to home learning after the half term.

Children spending more time online unsupervised, such as in their bedrooms or when parents are trying to work from home, means there is a chance they could fall victim to exploitation and bullying.

Figures show that there has been an increase in online incidents across the UK since the start of lockdown, and more young people are highlighting fake news as an area of concern.

Independent Chair of the Safeguarding Partnership Board, John Clements, said: “We know that during the pandemic, there has been an increase in the number of reports of children across the country falling victim to predators who target them online, through popular apps, games and social media platforms such as SnapChat, Instagram and Roblox.

“Young people need to be aware of the signs of exploitation and online bullying and that’s why we have created a handy online guide on our website to support parents and young people.”

This comes as another report highlights that half of young internet users encounter misleading and falsified content online every day, with some noticing it more than six times a day.

Charity partnership the UK Safer Internet Centre questioned 2,021 children aged between eight and 17-years old about their online habits, revealing that 48 per cent said they came across misleading content at least once a day, with 24 per cent adding they encountered it between two and five times each day.

John added: “Children and young people spend a lot of their time online and it is essential that parents know what they are doing, the sites they’re visiting, who they are talking to and if the information they are seeing is correct.

“I am keen to stress that the internet is not all bad; in fact, over the last few weeks it has once again become a brilliant resource for keeping up with schoolwork, friends and family. However, you do need to be careful when it comes to sharing personal information and pictures.”

The government, the department for education and leading UK charities have issued consistent guidance: think before you post, don’t share personal information, being aware of scams, thinking about who you are talking too online, keeping your device secure, never giving out your passwords and covering your webcam when you are not using it.

John added: “We don’t want to alarm parents or carers and there is no need to lock away your children’s screen or to scare them with stories of bad people, but by taking a few simple steps you can help protect them online.”

The safeguarding board is a partnership between Cornwall Council, Devon and Cornwall Police, NHS Kernow and the Council of the Isles of Scilly and is in place to protect children in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly from harm.

For more information please go to ciossafeguarding.org.uk or if you have an urgent safeguarding concern you can contact the MARU on:  0300 1231 116

Categories: Councils, Politics

Are you ready to adopt or foster?

Tue, 23/02/2021 - 13:46

Life under Covid 19 has been tough for everyone; extended lockdowns have put extreme pressure on households across the UK and those stresses inevitably impact on the work of local social services.

Every 20 minutes a young person comes into care and needs to be placed with a foster family in the UK and here in Cornwall that equates to nearly 500 children and young people being in care at any given time.   

Cornwall Council’s Together for Families works tirelessly to find the best routes forward for every single child in its care within Cornwall, to enable them to thrive and reach their full potential, whether that be working with birth families, fostering or adoption.

There are many reasons why children need foster care; in our current situation, it could be that illness in the family means the child can’t be looked after at home for a short while, or it could be a longer term issue that means they need care in a stable and nurturing environment for an extended period of time.

Covid 19 inevitably pressurised existing foster caring situations as well and Cornwall Council put out a successful call to its own employees as well as people across Cornwall last year, to find temporary carers able to step in should our existing carers be unable to look after the children in their care.  

As we come out of what may be our final lockdown, there is still a shortage of foster carers and adopters across the country and the situation is no different here, as Cornwall Council’s Together for Families fostering service manager Julie Goodwin explains: “We have truly amazing carers in Cornwall but the national trend suggests there are fewer new carers coming forward, so if you’ve got the time and you are ready to make a difference, we’d love to hear from you.”

As Cabinet Member for Children, Wellbeing and Public Health, Sally Hawken, adds: “Our aim is not only to have the best support network in the country, but to also have the best trained, skilled and informed foster carers to bring about the most positive change for all children and young people in care.”

If you’ve ever thought about adopting, Cornwall Council’s Adoption teams will also be there to hold your hand every step of the way, from initial enquiry to when you have been matched with a child or children and beyond, offering expert insights and advice on different types of parenting, access to professional therapeutic support, mentoring and the latest ideas and thinking about how to help a child that has experienced trauma or abuse in their young lives.

Are you ready to make a difference to a child’s life? If so, now is the time to act. We currently have 25 children we are looking to find forever homes for, including 5 sibling groups. Cornwall Council urgently needs adopters from all walks of life to reflect the diversity of the children in our care, especially those who could take on a sibling group, and as we approach LGBT+ fostering and adoption week (March 1st-7th), we reach out to members of all communities who want to find out more about how they can make that difference.

For more information about fostering or adopting in Cornwall,  visit www.adoptincornwall.co.uk or www.fosterincornwall.co.uk and fill out the enquiry form to book a personal information call.

For more information about LGBT+ Fostering and adoption week, visit www.newfamilysocial.org.uk

Are you ready to start your fostering or adoption journey? If so, Cornwall Council is ready to make it happen.

Categories: Councils, Politics

Council agrees budget to protect key services and calls for long-term social care funding plan

Tue, 23/02/2021 - 13:13

Cornwall councillors have approved a budget to invest in residents’ priorities and protect services for vulnerable children and older adults while keeping council tax bills among the lowest in the South West.

From April the Cornwall Council element of council tax will rise by 1.99% plus an additional 3% for the Government precept for adult social care – equivalent to an extra £1.52 a week for the average property (band D).

Unitary authorities and county councils across the South West are set to increase their council tax by 4.99% due to pressures on local government funding and the need to safeguard essential services for residents.

The increase comes as Cornwall Council calls on the Government to stop pushing the rising costs of adult social care onto council taxpayers each year and introduce a long-term and sustainable funding solution.

At a full Council meeting today (February 23, 2021) councillors agreed the latest business plan and budget which will see an extra £16 million a year invested to sustain social care services for vulnerable and older adults, on top of a £20 million uplift last year.

There will also be an additional £6 million annually injected into the Council’s OFSTED ‘outstanding’ services for children, schools and families, as well as the introduction of a new waste service to help encourage residents to recycle more.

Savings in the budget include reducing business travel by 35%, cutting paper use by 37%, replacing streetlights with LED bulbs, and automating back-office processes.

The plan includes:

• Investing more than £239 million in homes for local people, helping sustain the Council’s record as one of the country’s top councils for providing affordable homes.
• investing over £180 million in connecting Cornwall with superfast broadband, better roads, and more safe spaces for walking and cycling.
• giving children the best start in life, with more than £49m to repair school buildings and create more school places for children across Cornwall.
• leading the fight against the climate emergency, with more than £18 million set aside for renewable energy and our climate action plan - including planting an 8,000-hectare Forest for Cornwall, retrofitting homes to improve energy efficiency, and installing electric vehicle charging points across Cornwall.

 

Earlier this month Cllr Julian German, Leader of Cornwall Council, called on Health Secretary Matt Hancock to end the annual council tax supplement, which has been added to bills annually since 2016 in the form of the Adult Social Care precept. 

In the open letter Cllr German calls on Mr Hancock to bring forward a long-term sustainable funding package for social care in next week’s March Budget and honour the Prime Minister’s pledge to “fix social care once and for all.”

At today’s meeting Cllr German said: “During the years of austerity, we have adapted the way we work as a council, allowing us to make £380 million of savings, while putting residents first and protecting the services that people have told us are most important – such as providing care for the elderly, more homes and jobs for local people, and keeping Cornwall’s roads in good repair.

“We have worked with communities to deliver better local library services, community spaces and leisure services, which are valued by the people who use them. 

“We have transformed our children’s services to ‘outstanding’ making Cornwall Council’s services the best in the South West, and in the top 10% across the country. 

“However, the demand for our services is rising as more residents come to rely on our adult social care services, and more children than ever need the social care we provide. 

“For many years, Government have promised a sustainable funding solution, but instead Government are forcing Council's into council tax rises.”

Cllr German added that the Council’s latest residents survey showed that resident satisfaction with the way the Council runs things had increased by 15% points over the last year and was now 10 points above the Local Government Association average.

Cllr German said: “It has been a tough year for us all, but I am pleased to report that in the latest residents survey residents are recognising the hard work of Cornwall Council.

“Residents can be assured that Cornwall Council will continue to live our values, listening to residents, responding to their needs, and standing up for Cornwall.”

As well as discussing the budget and business plan, the full Council meeting also:

  • approved the annual revenue budget and capital programme for Tamar Bridge and Torpoint Ferry as well as noting that the Joint Chairs of Tamar Bridge and Torpoint Ferry Joint Committee will continue to press the Government to deliver on its offer for Highways England to contribute towards the operation and maintenance of the Tamar Bridge.
  • agreed the Housing Revenue Account for the next financial year, which will see social and affordable dwelling rent increase by 1% in 2021/22.

 

Story posted on February 23, 2021

Categories: Councils, Politics

Shellfish company fined for using other companies’ food safety labels

Mon, 22/02/2021 - 13:06

A Falmouth-based shellfish company has been fined after putting food on the market with other companies’  food safety markings. 

On February 10 at Plymouth Magistrates’ Court, Falcatch Limited and the company’s director Thomas Duane were fined a total of £1,516 and ordered to pay £2,900 costs and a £140 victim surcharge. 

Falcatch Ltd and Mr Duane pleaded guilty to a total of four food hygiene offences.  

In November 2019 Port Health Officers based in Falmouth Docks were informed by another local shellfish business that Falcatch Ltd were using identification marks - the oval you see on meat, fish and dairy products - belonging to other local businesses.    

The court heard that a nine-month investigation uncovered that Falcatch Ltd had used three different businesses’ identification marks, including that of a local egg packer.  

Port Health Officers discovered that Falcatch Ltd was putting shellfish on the market with wholesalers in both France and the UK. 

In order to trade in this way, the business should have been subject to approval from the Port Health Authority, after which would it would have been given its own unique identification mark.    

The District Judge said she was concerned about the length of time the breaches had been going on for, as the longer it occurred, the harder it was to trace the products back through the food chain.   

Kingsley Keat, prosecuting on behalf of Cornwall Council, said it was key that any animal products placed on the market only be done so from businesses found to be meeting high standards of hygiene, and only from those businesses who were subsequently issued with such health numbers.   

Apart from meeting hygiene standards, the health numbers allow for the produce to be traced quickly, which is extremely important if, for instance, there was an outbreak of food poisoning.  

During mitigation, the court heard Mr Duane had no previous convictions, had cooperated with the investigation, had entered guilty pleas at the earliest opportunity and had worked constructively with Port Health Officers to ensure that the business was approved.  

The court was told that Mr Duane regretted the incident, took full responsibility and sought not to blame anyone else, but he thought he was passing on the food chain information, therefore was acting within the confines of the law, and he had been partially naïve.  

He also said that Brexit had had an impact on the business.   

Because the offences all occurred out of the same set of facts, the District Judge fined both the company and Mr Duane in respect of one offence each.   

Rob Nolan, Portfolio Holder for Public Protection, said: “The system that approves wholesale businesses to trade in animal products gives confidence to retailers here and abroad that they are buying from premises with high standards of hygiene and traceability.  

“Any attempt to work outside of that system, and pretend that you are within it by using other businesses numbers, can undermine confidence in the system, and is unfair to those businesses that follow the rules before they trade.”  

Categories: Councils, Politics

Milestone reached as promise of 1,000 new homes for Cornwall’s residents is delivered

Mon, 22/02/2021 - 10:31

 

Cornwall Council has delivered on its promise to provide 1,000 new homes throughout Cornwall. 

The 1,000th home to be completed has been built by Vistry Partnerships, in partnership with Cornwall Council and LiveWest at the former Penwith Council office site at St. Clare in Penzance. The property is a three bedroom house for shared ownership and is currently being marketed for sale by LiveWest, to eligible households.   

Cornwall Council portfolio holder for homes Andrew Mitchell said: “Four years ago, our commitment to provide 1,000 quality new homes to meet the different needs of our residents was at the top of the list of priorities.

“We’ve put in the hard work, planning, funding and resources to make sure we delivered and enabled quality homes – including a large amount of social and affordable housing – and have created a model to continue delivery on an even larger scale over coming years.”   

The Council has worked with local housing associations, town, parish and local Cornwall Council councillors and partners to provide solutions to local housing need.

'The need is real' with 12,000 families on Homechoice register

Andrew said: “Some homes are for social rent and shared ownership in our Housing Revenue Account, which is what used to be known as council housing. We’ve built 112 new homes in the HRA since 2017 and we are currently on-site building or in contract to deliver a further 144, with 21 in the planning system. 

“Others are for secure long-term market rent or for open market sale through our partnership company, Treveth. We have also worked in an innovative partnership with Vistry and LiveWest through the Homes for Cornwall initiative and provided our own grant funding to local registered providers to further increase delivery of affordable housing.  

“All of this means that this council has delivered on its commitment to provide a range of homes to suit the needs of families in Cornwall. 

“But this is just the beginning. We’ve put resources in place and committed to an ambitious programme of over 1,700 new affordable homes, mainly for social rent and shared ownership, by March 2028.  With 12,000 families on the Cornwall Homechoice register looking for a home, the need is real.” 

“We’ll continue to work hard to safeguard the assets of our beautiful Duchy - the landscape, the environment, the heritage – and balance those considerations with the need to provide new, good quality homes for our residents.” 

'We have peace of mind'

Emma moved into one of the Council’s new social rent homes with her young family and explains: “I was bidding on Cornwall Homechoice because my rent was too high where I was privately renting. This house is much nicer, and the area is nicer too with more children for mine to play with.” 

Naomi who, with her family, moved into a four-bedroom home for affordable rent on a site delivered in partnership with Vistry, LiveWest and Cornwall Council said: “We’re delighted that we have been able to stay in the village. We need four bedrooms, and this house is ideal. We’re all really excited. We’ve made it our home and we’re really happy with it.” 

Caroline and her husband moved into a new home in Poundstock, built by Cornwall Rural Housing Association and says: “Our quality of life has improved drastically... we have peace of mind knowing that we can be here for as long as want.  It’s our forever home and we love it.” 

Andrew added: “All affordable homes to rent are allocated to households that have a strong local connection to Cornwall, either through residency, ex-residency, employment or close family connection – we don’t build homes for other local authorities to house their residents.” 

There are also schemes which have been delivered in partnership with the Council’s Adult Social Care team to help the most vulnerable in our communities.  Two specialist schemes have been built by the Council for adults with Learning Disabilities in St. Austell and Penzance, with a planning application submitted for a third scheme in Launceston. 

The Council has set up Treveth to develop new housing mainly for private rent.  So far 113 quality new homes at Bodmin and Tolvaddon have been completed with a small number of plots for open market sale, and self-build.  Twenty-eight high-quality flats were also completed in Newquay just before Christmas and 46 homes are currently under construction in Liskeard. A second phase of development in Bodmin is scheduled to start before the end of March and construction is also due to start shortly on sites in Redruth, Newquay and Launceston. 

The Council has worked with Vistry and LiveWest to provide homes for open market sale, affordable rent and shared ownership on surplus Council land throughout the Duchy.  This is known as the Homes for Cornwall initiative, and has been hugely successful – approximately 52% of all homes have been provided as affordable housing across the programme.  Homes have been built at Shortlanesend, Madron, Wadebridge, St. Breward, two sites in Penzance and Marazion.   

One of the Council’s other innovations is its own direct funding programme for Registered Providers, over and above Homes England’s national Affordable Homes Programme. Since inception, nearly £50m has been invested or committed in three phases.  The most recent began in April 2019, with an allocation of £15.1m of grant funding to deliver affordable homes throughout the Duchy.   

Andrew said: “Through all these initiatives, and a handful of others, we’ve delivered on our promise to provide 1,000 good quality homes and have created a model to continue delivery on an even larger scale over coming years. 

“We know that Cornwall needs more homes – both to rent and to buy. We must continue to rise to the challenge and seize the initiative to provide a range of homes to improve choice for residents and to meet their housing needs.” 

Categories: Councils, Politics

Register to vote before the May 2021 elections

Fri, 19/02/2021 - 15:31

Residents across Cornwall are being urged to make sure they are on the Electoral Register if they want to vote in the May 2021 elections. 

On Thursday, May 6, elections will be held for Cornwall Council, Town and Parish Councils and the Devon and Cornwall Police Crime Commissioner.   

Voters have a range of options for casting their ballot – in person, by post or by appointing someone they trust to vote in their place, known as a proxy vote.  

Cornwall Council is putting arrangements in place to ensure polling stations are safe places to vote. Voters can expect many of the measures they’ve become used to over recent months, such as the use of hand sanitiser, social distancing, floor markings and face coverings.  

In England residents must be aged 18 or over and be on the Electoral Register if they want to vote. Anyone who is not registered or has recently moved must have registered by midnight on Monday, April 19.  

You must re-register if you’ve changed address, name or nationality. If you are already registered, you do not need to apply again unless your circumstances have recently changed.  

Further information about registering to vote can be found on the Electoral Commission website

Voters who do not wish to vote in person can apply to vote by post or by proxy. If you would like to request an application form, you can call the council’s elections team on 01209 614373.  

You can also download them via the Cornwall Council website

Cornwall Council is asking residents how they feel about voting in the May 2021 elections. 

You can complete the short survey here

 

Story posted 19 February 2021

Categories: Councils, Politics

Shielding support for new and existing clinically extremely vulnerable residents

Thu, 18/02/2021 - 16:31

Cornwall Council, NHS Kernow and Volunteer Cornwall are reassuring all clinically extremely vulnerable residents that support is available as more people are asked to shield as part of new government guidelines.

The Department of Health and Social Care is writing to an additional 4,333 adults in Cornwall out of 1.7 million people across England who have been identified under a new scientific model as having multiple risk factors which make them more vulnerable to the effects of Covid-19.

Latest technology analyses a combination of risk factors based on medical records, including health and personal factors, such as age, ethnicity, BMI and deprivation levels, as well as certain medical conditions and treatments, to assess whether somebody may be more vulnerable than was previously understood.

Those newly identified by their doctors or consultants as being clinically extremely vulnerable will now be asked to stay at home as much as possible except to go outdoors for exercise or to attend health appointments in the same way as people who have been shielding throughout the current lockdown.

In addition, residents new to shielding who have not already been offered the Covid-19 vaccination will now be prioritised to receive a vaccine as part of the current vaccination cohorts.

Age UK and Volunteer Cornwall can help transport vulnerable residents who do not have their own transportation to their vaccination appointment.

Cornwall Council is working with partners in the health and voluntary sector to continue to support all clinically extremely vulnerable residents in accessing food, essential supplies and wellbeing advice during the lockdown.    

Sally Hawken, Cornwall’s cabinet member for children, wellbeing and public health, said: “If you have just been added to the shielding list you may be wondering why you have only now been identified as being especially vulnerable to Covid-19. Scientists now understand a lot more about how the virus affects people and new research commissioned by the Chief Medical Officer has recently enabled health professionals to identify people who may be at increased risk of becoming seriously unwell from Coronavirus, because of a combination of their individual characteristics and their underlying health conditions.

“Most importantly, this new research helps clinicians provide vaccination more quickly to those identified as clinically extremely vulnerable and ensure they can benefit from additional advice and support.”

Dr Iain Chorlton, GP and chairman of NHS Kernow Clinical Commissioning Group, said: “The clinically extremely vulnerable group includes those previously told to shield because of reduced immune systems, such as due to organ transplants, or those with specific cancers or severe respiratory conditions, such as cystic fibrosis, chronic kidney disease (stage 5), those undergoing dialysis, and adults with Down’s Syndrome, but it also takes into account a variety of factors including age, ethnicity, body mass index (BMI), other health conditions and also postcode.

“People who are within the clinically extremely vulnerable group will have received a letter previously or should expect one to arrive shortly.

“It is really important that when a person within the expanded clinically extremely vulnerable group is invited to book an appointment for their Covid-19 vaccination by their GP or through the national booking service that they do so and attend.”

Rob Rotchell, Cornwall’s cabinet member for adults, said: “Whether you have been shielding before or have just been asked to start shielding, please be assured that together with NHS Kernow and Volunteer Cornwall we are continuing to support our vulnerable adults who have had their lives affected so seriously by the pandemic.  

“Please do get in touch with us if you need help with food, prescriptions or if you are feeling anxious and needing mental health support, and we will do all we can to help.”  

Ian Jones, Chief Executive of Volunteer Cornwall, said “One of the most heart-warming things about the last 12 months is the way that communities have reached out and thrown their arms around their most vulnerable members. People have shown they are willing to offer one of their most precious assets, their time, to help others in need and that gives me great hope for the future.”

All clinically extremely vulnerable residents have now been advised to stay at home until March 31. 

They have been asked to work from home if possible and if they cannot work from home, they should not attend work. They may be eligible for Statutory Sick Pay, Employment and Support Allowance, Universal Credit or furlough through the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme.  

Those shielding are also asked to avoid all non-essential travel – they should continue to travel to hospital and GP appointments unless told otherwise by their doctor. They are strongly advised not to go to any shops or to pharmacies.   

Those in the clinically extremely vulnerable group are eligible for free medicines delivery from community pharmacies during this period if friends and family are not able to collect prescriptions or medicines on their behalf. Prescriptions should continue to be ordered from the GP as normal, either electronically or via telephone.   

Supermarkets are continuing to provide priority delivery slots to vulnerable individuals and if residents need help getting online, for example to register for an online supermarket account, they can ring Cornwall Council’s support line for those who are clinically extremely vulnerable on 0300 1234334 or contact Volunteer Cornwall.    

Volunteer Cornwall can also help collect and deliver food shopping and medical prescriptions, as well as provide befriending support and volunteers who can help with other low level needs.

Emergency food support is available at foodbanks throughout Cornwall. An interactive Help with Food map has been created in partnership with community organisations and is online at Let’s Talk Cornwall https://letstalk.cornwall.gov.uk/help-with-food.  

Health services remain available and residents with a complex need or medical question should contact their GP or health consultant.    

Anyone who may be worried about their own or someone else's mental health can contact 0800 038 5300 for help and support.    

Here is the updatedguidance for those who are clinically extremely vulnerable to COVID-19.   

For more information or advice contact Cornwall Council on covid19@cornwall.gov.uk or ring 0300 1234334.   

You can also contact Volunteer Cornwall on 01872 266988 or email requestforhelp@volunteercornwall.org.uk   

 

Story posted on February 18, 2021

Categories: Councils, Politics

New adult social care charging policy approved

Tue, 16/02/2021 - 14:25

Councillors have approved a new adult social care charging policy developed in consultation with hundreds of residents and aimed at better meeting their needs through a clearer and fairer charging system.

The policy was agreed unanimously by Cornwall Council’s Cabinet at its meeting last week. 

The policy was written following informal engagement with voluntary and community organisations and endorsed by councillors for public consultation last March.

Residents had their say on the plans during a five-month, extended consultation which included 28 public online events, 20 virtual events for organisations, letters to service-users, telephone engagement and an online survey in which more than 350 residents, carers and those representing someone with care needs responded.

The majority of responders said the new draft policy was easy to understand and supported a self-service option to apply for financial assistance for funding adult social care.

The suggested changes include practices which are already used in many other local authority areas.

Key changes in the policy are:

  • Charging for care at home from the date care services commence instead of when a financial assessment is completed;
  • Calculating respite care charges in line with the rules for short stays at care homes;
  • A new fee for arranging care for self-funding residents who pay all their care costs;
  • Removing a £2.50 set price subsidy for meals supplied at home.

Cornwall Council portfolio holder for adults Cllr Rob Rotchell said: “This new adult social care charging policy has been developed with extensive consultation and feedback from our residents and partners in the care and voluntary sectors.

“It’s been designed to simplify the charging process for different aspects of social care and set out much more clearly what people will be expected to pay for. It also aligns our charging practices with other councils.

“Unless you qualify for financial assistance there is a charge for adult social care, which can be confusing as many people assume it is free like the NHS. Often people come to us in crisis and it can be a shock to learn this. The changes proposed will ensure that we continue to make best use of taxpayers money and help those that are most in need.”

More information can be found on the council’s website.

 

Story posted on February 16, 2021

Categories: Councils, Politics

Attention all dog owners – make sure you pick up after your pet

Mon, 15/02/2021 - 14:57

Cornwall Council is reminding people to pick up their pet’s mess following an increase in reports of dog fouling during lockdown.  

Under the Antisocial Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act it is an offence to allow a dog to foul in a public place and fail to remove the faeces.  

People who don’t pick up their dog’s poo could be issued a Fixed Penalty Notice of £100. If unpaid, a prosecution could result in a fine of up to £1,000.   

Cornwall Council is teaming up with local town and parish councils and community groups to help tackle the issue. 

Last year Keep Britain’s Tidy We’re Watching You campaign was trialled in 11 dog fouling hot spots across Cornwall. The eye-catching signs resulted in an average reduction in dog fouling by 72.5%. 

Cornwall Council’s Communities and Public Protection team have been giving out additional signs, which have been installed at seven new sites across the county over the last few months. 

The impact of the signs is being closely monitored by dedicated community ambassador volunteers through weekly survey visits.  

Councillor Rob Nolan, Portfolio Holder for Environment and Public Protection, said: “It is simply unacceptable that some people chose not to pick up after their pets. Not only is the result unpleasant for other residents, it can pose a risk to people’s health, especially children.  

“If one of our officers witnesses someone failing to clear up after their dog, or if we receive evidence from a member of the public, those responsible will be given a £100 fine.” 

Local councils or community groups can apply to take part in the We’re Watching You campaign by emailing cep@cornwall.gov.uk.  

How to report dog fouling 

If you witness a fouling incident, you can report it via the Cornwall Council website here or by calling 0300 1234 212.  

You will need to give the time and date of incident, a brief description of the person, the dog and what happened. In order for Cornwall Council to investigate the matter you will also need to provide either the name and/or address of the individual or, if relevant, their vehicle registration number. 

Categories: Councils, Politics

Cornwall Fire and Rescue Service issues wildfire warning

Mon, 15/02/2021 - 09:23

Cornwall Fire and Rescue Service is urging members of the public to be alert following a spate of moorland fires across the South West. 

The fire service has warned that this weekend there is likely to be elevated wildfire conditions. This is because the undergrowth is very dry and strong winds, which fan the flames and cause fires to develop and spread rapidly, have been forecast. 

The warning comes following three separate blazes on Bodmin Moor and Dartmoor. 

On Thursday 11 February, crews battled a three-mile-wide gorse fire at Temple. Around 20 firefighters attended this incident. The service also responded to several other smaller fires on Bodmin Moor and near Bude. 

On the same day, crews in Devon tackled a large fire on Dartmoor and just two days previously, around 25 firefighters attended a serious blaze at Roseannon Downs, near Wadebridge. 

The recent fires in Cornwall are being treated as suspected arson, while the cause of the Dartmoor blaze is still being investigated.

Members of the public are urged to call Devon and Cornwall Police if they see people behaving suspiciously on moorland areas. 

Fire crews have been working with landowners to improve access and reduce the risk of fire by removing fallen trees and reducing undergrowth. However, the public is reminded to take extra care with cigarettes and naked flames. 

Following the latest fire at Temple, Anthony Bartlett, Assistant Chief Fire Officer at Cornwall Fire and Rescue Service, said: “Wildfires like many other incidents pose risks to firefighters as the dynamics of the situation can change rapidly. The wind driven aspect of this particular fire meant the fire was changing directions and travelling very quickly. The dark and terrain added further issues, but teams adapted and used the landscape to our benefit. Cornwall Fire and Rescue Service communicated with local landowners and established further risks such as a mine shaft, power lines and grazing animals. This local knowledge and collaborative approach were very beneficial. 

“As with most fires, wildfires have the potential to pollute the air, water and land. Wildfires may also contribute to climate change by releasing carbon stored in vegetation and peat soils. There may be other impacts on ecological assets, air quality, public health, heritage assets, flora and fauna, tourism and recreation, and food production. Fortunately, this incident was contained and resolved in under three hours minimising the impacts.” 

As well as posing a risk to the responding fire crews, wildfires can cause significant damage to the environment and local wildlife. 

Following the fire at Roseannon Downs on Tuesday, Callum Deveney, of Cornwall Wildlife Trust, said: “Arson is suspected to be the cause of a large moor fire which affected a nature reserve. The blaze tore through nearly 50 acres of the Rosenannon Downs Nature Reserve near Wadebridge, Cornwall. 

"These fires are started by people who clearly don't understand the damage they are doing.” 

For more information on wild fires please visit the Cornwall Fire and Rescue Service website. 

.  

 Story posted 12 February 2021

Categories: Councils, Politics

Follow the lockdown rules and stay local this half-term

Fri, 12/02/2021 - 14:24

Residents across Cornwall are being urged to steer clear of public places that could become crowded this half-term and keep following the lockdown rules. 

Cornwall Council’s Public Health team is warning that traditional holiday hotspots could become Covid-hotspots if people flock to them next week. 

These include parks, playgrounds and beaches where car parks may become busy, and coastal paths which force people into close proximity as they pass each other.  

People are also asked to think twice about making unnecessary trips to supermarkets and other retail outlets which may attract more people than usual over the break. 

Meeting up with multiple friends and family is not permitted, unless your bubble allows it, so children’s play dates and social gatherings sadly remain off-limits for now. 

Councillor Sally Hawken, Portfolio Holder for Children, Wellbeing and Public Health, said: “The rate of transmission in Cornwall has been steadily decreasing since the national lockdown began in January which is testament to everyone’s commitment to keeping Covid at bay. 

“But if we drop our guard this half-term break then we could let the virus, and its new variants, regain control and send our case numbers soaring again. Needless to say, this would again put our health services and valiant front-line workers under huge pressure yet again and we can’t afford to let that happen.” 

Rachel Wigglesworth, Director of Public Health for Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly, added: “Of course school holidays should be a time for people to get out and about and visit family and friends. But we’re asking people to put these plans on hold, hopefully just for a matter of months, until the Government deems it safe to start lifting some of the restrictions. 

“This third lockdown has been especially tough for many people in Cornwall and I’d like to thank everyone for sticking to the rules and doing all they can to stop this awful virus for spreading out of control. 

“We just need to carry on doing what we’ve been doing to protect our most vulnerable residents and we’ll come out the other side of this together.” 

Cornwall Council and Devon and Cornwall Police is reminding people that they should not be coming to Cornwall for a holiday or to stay in a second home. 

Chief Superintendent Jim Pearce said: “The vast majority of our communities have been compliant with regulations throughout the pandemic – that co-operation is valued and we’d ask it to continue. 

“We know there is anxiety in some of our communities regarding second home owners visiting Cornwall and we continue to work with Cornwall Council to monitor this closely.  

“We will review all reports which indicate COVID-19 breaches of legislation and where necessary, we have dedicated resources to assist partners to carry out enforcement.” 

Cornwall Council’s Covid enforcement team will be carrying out checks to ensure that businesses, including holiday accommodation providers, are complying with the current restrictions. 

For the time being, non-essential business and those providing close contact services, such as hairdressers, barbers and beauticians must remain closed.  Hospitality businesses are also restricted to providing takeaway services only. 

During the first week of February, Cornwall Council’s Covid Enforcement team asked 19 non-essential business settings to close, gave 40 advisory warnings and served one fixed penalty notice, which carries a £1,000 fine.

Councillor Rob Nolan, Portfolio Holder for Environment and Public Protection, said: “We know this is an incredibly difficult time for businesses but we cannot be complacent now.  

“Our enforcement team will continue supporting businesses and checking they are complying with the current rules throughout the half-term holidays. 

“Please stay local to your area, follow the rules and help keep our communities safe.” 

Businesses can find support and guidance regarding the latest restrictions on the Business Regulatory Support website.  

If you are concerned that a business is operating illegally during lockdown, you can report it via the Cornwall Council website. 

For more on the rules and guidance visit www.cornwall.gov.uk/coronavirus 

To ease pressure on the NHS, anyone who needs urgent but not emergency care is urged to think 111 first. Using the NHS 111 service either online – www.111.nhs.uk or calling 111 – will mean that if someone does need to go to a minor injury unit or the emergency department, the teams there will know they are coming and can manage the way people come into the departments. 

Categories: Councils, Politics

New recruits to board mean a boost for nature and lockdown wellbeing in Cornwall and Scilly

Fri, 12/02/2021 - 14:02

Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly’s Local Nature Partnership has appointed three new board members to boost its knowledge and expertise.  

The appointments come at a time when green spaces and a healthy local environment come high on the list of essentials during lockdown.  

The three new members are Martin Howlett, Ilya Maclean, and Council of the Isles of Scilly Chief Executive Paul Masters.  

Martin Howlett brings a wealth of experience from his farming background as well as his numerous representative roles including the National Farmers Union.   

Martin said: “As a farmer I’m fully committed to support and engage with Cornwall’s natural environment, its communities and its rural economy.  In nature like other areas we need a can-do approach.”  

Ilya Maclean from Exeter University’s Penryn Campus has a strong science and academic background in sustainability.  He focuses on both land-based and marine environments.  

Commenting on his new role, Ilya said: “Cornwall has a great opportunity to reverse declines in wildlife, and to show leadership in how to do this effectively. I am excited by the prospect of helping to shape this process in my role as a board member of the Local Nature Partnership.”  

Paul Masters will ensure that the Partnership keeps its focus on the Isles of Scilly as well as Cornwall. 

Paul said: “As a previous member of the board I’m really excited at the opportunity to re-join in my new role as CEO for the Council of the Isles of Scilly. Working alongside Cornwall we on the Islands want to play our part in enhancing and growing our natural environment as part of our collective efforts to mitigate the effects of climate change. There has never been a more important time for the LNP to help galvanise our communities and seek government support.”  

Chair of the Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Local Nature Partnership, Lord Robin Teverson said: “Our Local Nature Partnership’s mission is to better our environment and grow our natural world. That also adds up to an improvement to people’s lives, not least during lockdown. To rise to that challenge, we have brought new blood onto the board.  

“Farming makes up some three quarters of Cornwall’s land surface. To have thriving wildlife and a living countryside, keeping our farmers on board is essential. Martin Howlett will be a big part of making that happen.  

“The environment is a complex mix of many factors and systems.  Good scientific advice is vital.  That’s why Ilya Maclean’s appointment is so important to us. With Cornwall and Scilly’s long coastlines his marine experience as well as land-based expertise will be a great plus.  

“As top officer on the Isles of Scilly, Paul Masters makes sure that the rich environmental heritage of Scilly is kept to the fore at our Partnership meetings.  

“This is an important and challenging time for nature and our Partnership. We have to turn the corner and achieve a natural environment that is thriving rather than retreating.”  

The Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Partnership brings together environmental groups from across the two authorities to promote environmental growth, increase biodiversity, and promote nature. It is currently refreshing its Environmental Growth Strategy, and producing Cornwall’s Nature Recovery Plan in conjunction with Cornwall Council.   

These three board members will strengthen the already diverse board membership that includes the RSPB, Cornwall Council, the Council of the Isles of Scilly, the Environment Agency, Natural England, and Cornwall and Scilly’s two Wildlife Trusts.

Categories: Councils, Politics

The Bodmin and south east Cornwall projects set to benefit from cash boost

Fri, 12/02/2021 - 09:32

A series of community projects in Bodmin and South East Cornwall will benefit from grant funding delivered by Cornwall Council. 

The schemes include a new community nature space, plastic water refill stations, solar panels for a redeveloped building, and providing e-bikes for Bodmin residents to use. 

Funding will come from the Community Infrastructure Levy Fund, which supports low-carbon projects aimed at encouraging greener living. 

In the Bodmin and south east Cornwall areas, four such projects are set to benefit. 

Co Cars Ltd has been given £62,500 to launch its Co Bikes scheme with 18 e-bikes for hire, available from charging points at Chy Trevail in the town centre and at least four other locations around Bodmin. 

Co Bikes

Mark Hodgson, founder and MD of Co Bikes, said: “I can’t wait to bring Co Bikes to Bodmin. Because they’re electric, the bikes give you an extra boost to eat up the miles – and hills – making them a great way to get more active and have fun whilst doing so.  

“They’re also a brilliant, zero carbon alternative to the car for all sorts of day-to-day activities such as shopping and commuting as well as just enjoying exploring the local area.” 

Fin Irwin, CEO of intoBodmin, Co Bikes’ partners on the project, said: “There has been talk of electric bikes in Bodmin for several years and there is aspiration for all sorts of environmentally sustainable projects to make our town a local leader in promoting green initiatives.  

“To be able to work with Co Bikes and other local partners also presents a fantastic opportunity to forge and strengthen local collaborations, meaning this project will help bring the town together in more ways than one.” 

The Walkerlines Gymnasium Trust in Bodmin, which bought the town’s Walker Lines Gymnasium in 2013, will receive £53,345 to install 104 solar panels, which will cover more than 50 per cent of its electricity needs.  

The trust aims to create a centre that will accommodate a range of indoor activities and it will be renamed The Shed – Bodmin’s Activities Centre. 

Dobwalls and Trewidland Parish Council has been awarded £30,000 to create a community nature space and for recreational activities. 

A community project led by the Parish Council, it will see a field planted out by villagers, with a variety of trees as part of the Forest for Cornwall, relaying and restocking the hedgerows to attract more wildlife and wildflower planting to attract bees and insects. It will also incorporate natural walking areas to the village into a circular walk. 

Cllr Jane Pascoe At Trewidland

Jane Pascoe, Cornwall Council member for Liskeard West and Dobwalls, who helped the Parish Council with its application, said: “This was a rare opportunity for a small rural village to access funding that is normally awarded to larger settlements.  

“It would have been impossible to achieve the aspirations of the villagers without this fund and it has demonstrated that Cornwall Council considers the needs of the rural areas too." 

Finally, Our Only World will get £67,500 to manufacture and place water bottle refill stations at 15 locations across Cornwall, including at Saltash, Looe, Fowey and Par. 

Tina Robinson from Our Only World said: “Firstly, this means we can help to reduce single-use plastic going into our environment, whether it’s in our sea, litter or landfill.  

Water Bottle Refiller

“Secondly, it gives us 15 opportunities to collaborate with communities and make links with locals and visitors. 

“Thirdly, we have a local supply chain, located from Exeter to Callington, helping us to keep a low carbon footprint. We plan to use recycled plastic, particularly Odyssey Innovation’s recycled fishing nets collected from our Cornish beaches, which demonstrates our circular economy.” 

The not-for-profit charity gives any proceeds from its projects to fund marine conservation. 

Anyone who is interested in finding out more can email Tina on ouronlyworld@outlook.com 

Tim Dwelly, the Council’s Portfolio Holder for Culture, Economy and Planning, said: “This is all about projects that are based on a low-carbon way of thinking to give their communities a greener future, so I’m really looking forward to seeing these organisations in the Bodmin and south east Cornwall areas making a real difference with this money.” 

Edwina Hannaford, Portfolio Holder for Climate Change and Neighbourhoods, said: “The projects that we selected, after a rigorous process, reflect the Council’s ambitions to tackle climate change and be carbon-neutral by 2030 and all four of these will make a positive contribution to that aim – I look forward to seeing the results.” 

Since January 2019 the Council has been charging developers the Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) to help reduce any adverse impact of new housing and other building projects. 

CIL payments are set aside to be spent on infrastructure projects to benefit communities and support development. Between 15 to 25 per cent of the levy goes to the town or parish council where the development has taken place. 

Last summer the Council invited organisations to bid for a slice of £500,000 to pay for infrastructure projects that encourage greener and healthier lifestyles. 

Now the process has been completed, the total support provided by the CIL Fund could rise to £622,939, depending on whether some projects secure match-funding from elsewhere. 

Categories: Councils, Politics

Warning after cliff falls across Cornwall

Thu, 11/02/2021 - 15:02

Residents are being urged to take extra care by the coast following a series of cliff falls across Cornwall. 

Cliffs are more likely to become unstable during winter which can result in rocks and debris falling, often without warning. 

On Sunday, February 7, there was a rock fall at Whipsiderry Beach near Newquay. 

Sadly, rocks fell on a dog burying it under the rubble. The dog’s owner narrowly escaped injury after he was warned by a member of the public that the cliff was about to give way for a second time.  

In recent weeks, there have also been cliff falls at Charlestown, Par Sands and Pentreath Beach on the Lizard Peninsula. 

During lockdown residents should stay local to their area for daily exercise. With half-term approaching Cornwall Council, the RNLI and HM Coastguard are urging those who do live by the coast to take extra care if venturing out.  

Councillor Rob Nolan, Portfolio Holder for Environment and Public Protection at Cornwall Council, said: “We don’t know when and where rockfalls or landslides may occur, and we don’t know if they will be small or large-scale events. But we do know that they can be deadly. 

“Please keep away from any cliff edges and keep clear of the bottom of the cliff. We don’t want anyone to get hurt and we don’t want to put additional strain on our emergency services at this time.” 

Tom Mansell, RNLI Regional Lifesaving Lead for the South West, said: “With schools closed over the half-term and a break in online learning, it is likely we will see people lucky enough to live close to the coast using it to exercise. We are encouraging everyone to follow government guidance on what they are able to do and where they are able to go during lockdown. 

“The school holiday will look very different this year, but for those able to use the coast for exercise, we would urge them to familiarise themselves with local risks and be as safe as possible and not put unnecessary strain on front line services.” 

The RNLI and HM Coastguard has launched a winter coastal safety campaign to highlight the dangers of stormy seas, changing tides and unstable cliffs at this time of year. 

Tom added: “In particular at this time of year, we ask people to stay well back from stormy, wintery seas and cliff edges, check tide times before you go, take a phone with you, and call 999 or 112 and ask for the Coastguard if you or someone else is in trouble.” 

James Instance, Her Majesty’s Coastguard Controller based in Falmouth, said: “We understand that people will be looking to get out into the fresh air this half-term and explore the coastline with their families for their daily exercise allowance in line with COVID-19 restrictions – and, especially because other activities families may usually enjoy in the holidays are unable to happen as usual at the moment. 

“But, please, if you do venture out and are lucky enough to live close to the coast, take extra care, follow our safety guidance and make sure you make it home safely.  

“We’ve had plenty of rain lately so it’s important that you take plenty of care near cliffs, as some clifftops are really unstable and could easily collapse. Our advice, as always, is to stay well back, wear appropriate footwear and ensure that you check tide times and the forecast before setting out.  

“As ever, our message is – keep safe, but if you see anybody in trouble or if you get into difficulty, call 999 and ask for the Coastguard.” 

The RNLI’s key water safety advice is: 

  • Take care if walking near cliffs – be aware of mud, ice and frost, know your route, keep dogs on a lead and be wary of unstable edges  
  • Check tide times daily 
  • Take a full-charged phone  
  • If going afloat, always wear a lifejacket or other personal flotation device and take a means of calling for help 
  • Check your equipment is in good working order 
  • Be aware of the conditions and your capabilities and only enter the water if it is safe to do so 
  • In an emergency call 999 or 112 and ask for the Coastguard 
  • Additional safety advice is available on the RNLI website
Categories: Councils, Politics

Cornwall Council Cabinet recommends budget which invests in residents' priorities

Wed, 10/02/2021 - 17:08

A budget to invest in residents’ priorities while keeping council tax bills as low as possible has been recommended by cabinet at Cornwall Council today.

It will now go before full council later this month for final approval. If it is adopted, council tax will rise by 1.99%, plus an extra 3% for the Government precept for adult social care.

This is equivalent to an extra £1.52 a week for the average property (band D).

The business plan and budget would see Cornwall Council invest an extra £16 million a year to sustain social care services for vulnerable and older adults, on top of the £20 million uplift last year.

It also includes an extra £6 million a year for our OFSTED ‘outstanding’ services for children schools and families, and the introduction of a new waste service to help encourage residents to recycle more.

Savings in the budget include reducing business travel by 35%, cutting paper use by 37%, replacing our streetlights with LED bulbs, and automating back-office processes.

It also includes:

• Investment of more than £239 million in decent homes for local people, helping sustain our record as one of the top councils in the country for providing affordable homes.
• investing over £180 million in connecting Cornwall with superfast broadband, better roads, and more safe spaces for walking and cycling.
• giving children the best start in life, with more than £49m to repair school buildings and create more school places for children across Cornwall.
• leading the fight against the climate emergency, with more than £18 million set aside for renewable energy and our climate action plan - including planting a forest for Cornwall, retrofitting homes to improve energy efficiency, and installing electric vehicle charging points across Cornwall.

The council has also taken steps to lobby the Government to stop pushing the rising costs of adult social care onto council taxpayers each year.

In an open letter to health minister Matt Hancock, Cllr Julian German, leader of Cornwall Council, has called for an end to the annual supplement, which has been added to bills annually since 2016.

Speaking after today’s meeting, Cllr German said: “The business plan we approved today shows how we are living our values and what are our aims for the future, and the budget shows how we are going to deliver these.
“Of particular importance is adult social care and how we support those in needs of its services. For many years, Government have promised a sustainable funding solution.

“I hear the recommendations from our Health and Social Care Overview and Scrutiny Committee and have today written to the Secretary of State, Matt Hancock MP, calling on Government to bring forward a long-term sustainable funding package for social care in the March Budget, and honour the Prime Minister’s pledge to “fix social care once and for all”.”

The budget will now go before full council on Tuesday, February 23 for final approval.

Categories: Councils, Politics