Search This Blog

Contact the Blog

Send your news and pictures to the blog here jan@janwright.co.uk

Contact the Crewenews by using our form click here

Phone the Blog 0794-1728819

Join me on the forum below as I am on the staff as Samuria 24/7/365 worldwide support all FREE

 PC Help Forum

'

Sunday, 25 December 2011

Search for missing Congleton pensioner enters second day

Magdalana WHITTAKER

Cheshire Police continue to appeal for the whereabouts of an elderly lady reported missing from her home in Congleton.

Police have been searching for 84 year old Magdalana Whittaker of Boundary Lane in Congleton since she was reported missing by a concerned neighbour on Christmas Eve.

Inspector Steve Griffiths, who is co-ordinating the search for the pensioners whereabouts, said "The search for Magdalana now enters its second day and we understand that there was a sighting of her by a friend in Congleton town centre at around 5pm on Friday 23rd December. Nobody has seen her in almost 48 hours and we are very concerned. Our worry is further exacerbated by the fact that Magdalana is an elderly lady who is very hard of hearing."

Magdalana does not own a car nor is it believed she has a mobile phone. She is described as of slim build, 5 feet tall, with grey hair. When she was seen on 23rd December she was dressed in a green anorak, black trousers and a multicoloured hat. She speaks German and English. Magdalana often walks along the railway tracks near to her home where she collects logs and Police are keen to hear from anyone who may take the same route and may have seen Magdalana to get in touch.

Cheshire Police are utilising officers on the ground including lowland search and rescue, dog patrols and air support. Police are keen to hear from anyone who knows Magdalana and has seen or heard from her in the last 48 hours, to come forward. Similarly, anyone who may have seen anyone matching her description in the Congleton area are asked to contact Cheshire Police on 101 quoting incident 580 of 24th December.

Cheshire Police advise people to stay safe this Christmas

 

The festive period brings times of joy for many people but it may not be a happy time for those who choose to drink too much. This Christmas, Cheshire Police is reminding people to drink responsibly so they don′t put themselves at risk.

During the festive period there tends to be an increase in the number of alcohol related incidents. Cheshire Police advise people to be on their guard and warns that becoming extremely intoxicated can put you at risk. Alcohol can make you do things you wouldn′t usually do, it can lower your inhibitions, you may trust people that you wouldn′t if you were sober.

Chief Superintendent Richard Strachan added: "Christmas is a time for celebrating which can involve alcohol, unfortunately people can get carried away and drink too much. Women and men who have too much to drink leave themselves at an increased risk of becoming a victim of crime. If you don′t keep your wits about you, you can end up losing your property or having it stolen. Before you go out think about how you are going to get home, make sure you save enough money, always stick with your friends and don′t get in unlicensed taxis."

Anyone planning on enjoying a night out this Christmas is also advised to go out dressed suitably for the weather, at worst people are at risk of getting hypothermia or at best just falling over in high heels. Don′t let a good night out turn ugly.

To get the message across to people visiting Warrington Cheshire Police had a digital Ad-van travel around the town centre in a bid to convey the dangers of drinking excessively. If you have seen the Ad-van around and found it to be beneficial please feel free to leave a comment on our website http://www.cheshire.police.uk/.

Cheshire East cracks down on benefits cheat

 

A Cheshire East benefits cheat has been fined after he was found guilty of fraudulently claiming more than £1,500.

James Campbell, 30, of Havannah Street, Congleton, failed to appear before Macclesfield Magistrates Court on November 20. He was found guilty in his absence of one count of benefit fraud.  A warrant with bail was issued and he attended Crewe Magistrates’ Court on December 16, 2011.

The overpayment of £1,695.71 was in relation to an offence committed against Cheshire East Council between April 19, 2010 and October 17, 2010.

Campbell fraudulently claimed housing benefit and council tax benefit. His Jobseekers’ Allowance ceased in April 2010 and he had started work at the Cheshire Tavern, in Congleton, which he failed to declare to the Council. 

Campbell was invited to attend several interviews under caution with investigators to discuss this matter but he failed to attend. The Council had no alternative but to pass the matter to its prosecution team.

The overpayment totalled £1,447.94 housing benefit and £2,47.77 Council Tax benefit.

Councillor David Brown, Cheshire East Cabinet member with responsibility for performance and capacity, said: “Cheshire East Council does not tolerate people cheating honest taxpayers. Such fraudsters will be rigorously pursued through the courts and brought to justice.

“Benefit fraud robs hard-working communities of vital resources needed to provide much-needed public services. Such criminal acts rob councils and the Government of hard-pressed funds that could be spent helping the most vulnerable and needy people in our communities.

“The Council has a moral duty to honest taxpayers to take robust action against a selfish minority of people who try to dodge their responsibilities and defraud the public purse.”

Mr Campbell was fined £180 by magistrates. The Council was awarded £200 court costs and a £15 victim surcharge.  A Compensation Order for £1695.71 was imposed by the court, which Campbell must repay at £50 per week.

Campbell now lives in Bourton-on-the-Water, Gloucestershire.

Wednesday, 21 December 2011

Meeting Your Priorities for Policing

 

Cheshire Police Authority is sounding out public opinion on possibilities for the Chief Constable′s policing objectives for 2012/13.

Public consultation at a series of Roadshows during December and January is a key factor in the decisions the Authority will take. People are also being asked to express their views by email or by letter.

Listening to people′s views about policing and where they feel the police should focus their time and effort is an important part of the Authority′s role. During 2011 we have gathered the views of more than 1,300 members of the public about their priorities for policing and about police services.

The results show that the top 5 areas described as ‘essential′ by the public are:

  • responding to emergency calls
  • detecting crime and arresting offenders
  • tackling violent crime
  • tackling organised crime and terrorism
  • targeting drug dealers

The Authority has considered the results of the consultation and the priorities set for policing by the Coalition Government.

Each year, this process helps the Authority decide the key policing objectives which will be published in the Authority′s Policing Plan.

We then scrutinise the Constabulary′s performance against the objectives throughout the year. The proposed objectives for the coming year are:-

1. Respond as an emergency service and improve the way we care for individuals and the public and protect our communities from serious harm

2. Understand and strive to meet the expectations of the people of Cheshire

3. Maintain the trust and confidence of the public

4. Work with the public and our partners to reduce those crimes and acts of anti-social behaviour which the public are concerned about

5. Continue to increase the level of positive outcomes, provide the best care for victims and witnesses and work effectively with our partners to reduce re-offending

6. Improve the efficiency of our people and make best use of resources to prevent waste and duplication.

The Authority is asking people to comment on these proposals at the road shows being held across Cheshire in December 2011 and January 2012. Alternatively, the public can comment on the proposed objectives by sending an e.mail to police.authority@cheshire.pnn.police.uk , or by writing to us at: Cheshire Police Authority, Clemonds Hey, Oakmere Road, Winsford, CW7 2UA.

All comments must be received by no later than Friday 3 February 2012.

Police release photo of missing North Wales man

Haydn Mark Evans

Police have released a photograph of a man from North Wales reported missing following a Christmas party in Chester this weekend.
18 year old Haydn Mark Evans from Mold in North Wales failed to return home from a works Christmas party at Carden Park Hotel, Broxton Road near Chester on Friday 16 December.
Haydn was last seen around 1am Saturday morning at the front door ofCarden Park Hotel and his family have not had any contact with him since.
Haydnis approximately 5foot nine in height, is slim and has short brown hair and blue eyes. Hewas last seen wearing a dark long sleeved shirt andtrousers. He did not have a jacket or coatwith him but he may have had some money and his mobile phone.The weather has been extremely cold and police are concerned that Haydn, who is unfamiliar with the local area, may have become disorientated in the unfamiliar surroundings.
Extensive searches are now being conducted by Cheshire Police to trace Haydn′s whereabouts and police are asking anyone who lives in the area to check any empty buildings on their land, including farm outbuildings, sheds or garages in case Haydn has taken shelter from the cold weather.
Police would like to hear from any dog walkers, or anyone else who went walking in the countryside around Carden Park Hotel on Saturday 17th December,to make contact if they saw anyone fitting Haydn′s description.
Police are also appealingfor anyone who was traveling on the A41 Whitchurch Road, or A534 Wrexham Road, during the early hours of Saturday 17th December and saw anyone who fits Haydn′s description to make contact with Cheshire Police.
Police are urging any taxi drivers who may have seen someone fitting Haydn′s description in the area around Carden Park, or who may have taken a fare from someone fitting his description to make contact immediately as they may have information that will assist in locating Haydn.
Anyone who has any information is asked to call Cheshire Police using the new 101 policecontact number.

Receivers Step Out of the Shadows

 

Cheshire Police Officers say people have begun to respond to their "Do You Know Who You′re Dealing With?" campaign for information about criminals.

The campaign highlights the links between what are generally regarded as petty crimes and the world of organised crime, where the motive is pure profit.

Detective Superintendent Geraint Jones said, "We are out to break the myth that organised crime is a world apart. Criminals live in local communities and their actions affect those communities, ruining lives and causing all types of problems".

As part of the campaign, people are being asked to provide information about crime and about people they believe are involved in crime.

The Cheshire Police website, Cheshire.police.uk, has a form which you can fill in to provide basic information, or you can call the Cheshire Police Information line on 101, or information can be given anonymously on the Crimestoppers line 0800 555 111.

Among the criminals being targeted are those who buy and sell stolen goods. The Receivers:

"People think of receivers as figures in the shadows, but one may be living near you," says Detective Sergeant Glyn Leech.

"Most of them make a point of having a ‘normal′ way of life and blending into the background. They believe the best way to avoid being caught is not to arouse suspicion in the first place."

In fact, receivers- people who buy and sell stolen goods- are a vital element of organized crime.

"It′s probably safe to say that without receivers a lot of crime simply wouldn′t exist," says D.S. Leech. "The days when a thief would sit in a pub hawking stolen property, have almost gone. They know that if they do that they are vulnerable. Someone they approach will call us, or they will be caught on the pub′s CCTV.

"Nowadays some may try to sell their loot on the internet, but most know a receiver and because they believe it reduces the risk of being caught, they are prepared to accept the low price they are usually offered for stolen goods.

"Most burglars and thieves are feeding a drug habit. Some receivers are also drug dealers. So, in those cases, stolen goods may be exchanged directly for drugs. If it is a cash deal, the money will probably be used immediately to buy heroin or cocaine, or whatever substance is the drug of choice.

"In both cases the proceeds of a crime stay within the world of organized crime and the receiver has been an important cog in keeping the system running.

"Some people may think of receivers as being slightly to one side of mainline crime. In fact they are a major driving force. If you have any information about someone buying and selling stolen property or if you suspect that someone is making a living in this way, let us know.

"The same applies if you are offered goods in suspicious circumstances or at a price which raises questions about how it was acquired.

"Don′t be tempted to buy. If an item has been stolen it will never legally belong to you. Your "bargain buy" may end up being returned to the owner and you could lose your money. You could also find yourself heavily involved in a police investigation and questioned as a possible receiver of stolen property.

"Turning a blind eye is not an option. If you are offered suspicious goods, whether the offer is made face-to-face, or over the internet, tell us about it.

"We will always follow up any information and if there is an opportunity to collect evidence and make an arrest we will do it."

If you have suspicions about someone receiving stolen property or information about stolen goods, your can find the report form on the Cheshire Police website, Cheshire. Police.uk, by clicking "Get Involved" followed by "Organised Crime" and then "Do you know who?"

Or call the Cheshire Police information line, by dialling 101,

Or you can leave information anonymously on the Crimestoppers line 0800 555 111.

Speak out about domestic abuse this Christmas

 

At Christmas time there are people who live in Cheshire who become more vulnerable due to the amount of alcohol drunk to celebrate the festive period.

Cheshire Police officers often have to deal with the ′Ugly′ side of Christmas when they are called to a domestic situation where celebrations have ended in domestic violence in the home.

In December 2010 the Ugly truth is there were nearly 450 incidents of domestic abuse over the festive period in Cheshire. Almost a third of these incidents involved alcohol.

This Christmas Cheshire Police wants those who will not be celebrating but fearing the arrival of the festivities to Speak Out. No one needs to live their life in fear of being abused in their own home. There is no excuse for anyone who chooses to drink and act in a manner that makes their family or partner dread Christmas, alcohol is not an excuse for violent behaviour.

Assistant Chief Constable Ruth Purdie said "We are urging men and women to Speak Out this Christmas and end their fear. No one should live in fear of violence in their own home. On average, two women a week in England and Wales are killed by a violent partner or ex-partner. These deaths constitute nearly 40% of all female murder victims.

"Cheshire Police take domestic abuse very seriously, if you want to get out of an abusive relationship we want you to call us we can help you break the cycle of domestic abuse. This Christmas think about your children and the impact the violence may be having on them give them a Christmas they will never forgot - one free from violence - Speak Out now call us on the new police contact number 101 or 999 if you are in immediate danger."

This Christmas don′t let alcohol ruin lives. If you want to help someone you know who is the victim of domestic abuse but don′t want to talk to the police you can now pass information to the police by filling in a form on-line at http://www.cheshire.police.uk/ or you can get in touch by calling the domestic abuse helpline on 0808 2000 247.

For more information on the impact alcohol can have on people this Christmas go to Cheshire Constabulary′s 12 days of Christmas campaign on-line and see which looks you want to avoid this Christmas.

Saturday, 17 December 2011

Welcome to this MP’s 106th electronic news bulletin

Having trouble reading this email? View it in your browser!

Edward Timpson MP

Sunday 11, December 2011

Welcome ...

Welcome to this my 106th electronic news bulletin.

It is in our national interest for the countries with the euro to fix their problems. But we said we could only agree a new treaty if certain safeguards were obtained.

We couldn’t get those safeguards. A treaty within a treaty without safeguards wasn’t right for Britain, so we are saying no and exercising the veto. We’ve done what we said we were going to do, and Britain is stronger for having stuck to that. That means other countries now going ahead on their own.

In terms of fixing the problems of the euro, progress has been made and we wish our neighbours well with the euro. While there were disagreements in the discussions that David Cameron had the general mood was good natured and representatives of EU Nation States understood each others’ national interests. But at the end of the day, the Prime Minister's judgement was that what was on offer was not good enough for Britain, so better to have those countries in a treaty on their own.

Please remember, you can always contact me directly if you have any questions for me.

You can forward the bulletin on to your friends and family, who can sign up themselves by clicking here for my website.

Best wishes 

Edward Timpson
Member of Parliament for Crewe & Nantwich

back to top

I have recently ...

  • Held a drop-in advice surgery at the Nantwich Library
  • Attended a reception in Parliament Celebrating the 100th Anniversary of Macmillan Cancer Support to record a message of support
  • Chaired a meeting of the All-Party Group on Adoption and Fostering to discuss long term fostering
  • Chaired a meeting of the All-Party Group on Looked-After Children and Care Leavers to discuss the findings and implications of the recent Family Justice Review
  • Opened The Community Learning Centre on Coronation Crescent, Crewe
  • Met representatives of the Wynbunbury & Hough Action Group to discuss their concerns
  • Held an On Your Street session in Crewe bringing my surgery to your doorstep

back to top

Westminster Report

Main Content Inline Smalls

Read my most recent Westminster Report as we approach the end of 2011

Click here or on the image

back to top

Community News

Main Content Inline Small

Support the Looking After the Homeless Group

With a really harsh winter being predicted The LATH Group (Looking After The Homeless) are in dire need of donations, to help ease the lives of those that are homeless & many of whom sleeping rough this Christmas.
Many of us are going to be spending a wonderful Christmas with our loved ones with plenty to eat and drink near a cosy fireplace or in the warmth of the sunshine. In the spirit of goodwill and kindness I urge you to spare a thought for the many people that won't have this luxury and many who will be alone on Christmas Day.
To make a donation please click here - Please forward this link to your friends, your families & your colleagues, add the link to your Facebook & Twitter pages to help our cause and spread the word.
Your money will be used to feed, create warmth, clothe, and help shelter those who need it this winter.
Do you have community news to share? Email me and it could be here too!

back to top

Emergency response times improve in the Nantwich area

Crewe Chronicle

NEW figures show the number of lives being saved in and around Nantwich has continued to rise following the release of the latest response times to emergencies.

Statistics for the past seven months show the CW5 postcode has seen response times improve from well below to well above the national average and requirement.

The rate of Category A urgent calls being reached within the eight minute limit has risen from 55% just 18 months ago to 80% from April this year, better than the Department of Health’s 75% minimum level.

A campaign was led by Crewe and Nantwich MP Edward Timpson to get back the use of blue flashing lights for the town’s community first responder, Gavin Palin.

The pair have continued to meet with the North West Ambulance Service, the local Primary Care Trust and Nantwich Town Council on a regular basis over the past three years to keep pressing for a better service for local residents.

Mr Timpson said: “We fought long and hard for the blue light, so to have these statistics showing an upward trend is really pleasing.

“I hope we can continue to build on this in the future and I will be monitoring the situation with NWAS closely to ensure response times don’t begin to slip back.”

Mr Palin added: “I’m very pleased that response times to life threatening calls are the best I have ever known them to be.

“This shows the hard work and support Nantwich people put in was worth it.”

back to top

Crewe Green Link Road gets Chancellor's backing

Crewe & Nantwich Guardian
THE Chancellor George Osborne has announced major funding for the ambitious Crewe Green Link road.

In his Autumn Statement he said the Government will contribute to the £30m required for the proposed link road.

The scheme is one of several priority projects outlined in the’ All Change for Crewe’ regeneration project.

If approved, the road will link the A500 Hough Shavington bypass roundabout with the A5020 Weston Gate roundabout and unlock the potential of two major employment sites at Basford.

Edward Timpson, MP for Crewe and Nantwich, said he was delighted with the news.

He added: "I have lobbied George Osborne and successive Secretaries of State for Transport hard - both Labour and Conservative - to build this key piece of highway, and it is this Government that has listened.

"The link road is crucial Crewe's for future economic and housing growth, and will unlock the potential of two major employment sites at Basford, bringing our area an extra £250 million a year through the creation of up 12,500 jobs over the next 20 years."

Euro-MP Chris Davies, said: “Investment in better transport links and jobs in our area shows that the coalition government are serious about helping the economy to grow outside of London.”

back to top

Multi-million pound boost for Crewe Rail Station

Crewe Chronicle
PLANS to give Crewe Rail Station a massive overhaul and make it an iconic 21st century gateway to the town are back on track after a £6m windfall.

Cheshire East Council says its joint project with Network Rail has been successful in its bid for £6.177m from the Government’s £100m rail stations upgrade fund.

The scheme is central to the council scheme to regenerate and revitalise the town centre and surrounding area. This vision is called ‘All Change for Crewe’.

The new Government cash will fund the first phase of a comprehensive revamp of the station and the adjoining former Royal Mail site. Phase one will include:

a new surface-level car park of about 250 spaces;

improved facilities for taxis;

a new area for people to pick up and drop off their family and friends;

new ticket machines and passenger information displays;

reopening the pedestrian subway linking the new facility straight into platforms one to five and six to 11;

a new area for servicing vehicles to access the station;

a new commercial development site to provide a business opportunity for activities, which will be ancillary to the station.

Cllr Jamie Macrae, Cabinet member for prosperity, said: “This is wonderful news and a keystone of long-term regeneration not only of the town centre but also the wider 20-year All Change for Crewe project. The station is vital to our work to enhance the attractiveness of Crewe as a place to live, work and do business.

He added: “There is still a lot of hard work to be done but this funding announcement is a critical vote of confidence in the station, the town and wider regeneration scheme. A revitalised rail hub will be critical to boosting the town’s visitor economy and its attractiveness to business.”

Crewe and Nantwich MP Edward Timpson said: “I brought the Secretary of State for Transport to Crewe Station and made the case for long-needed improvements. I’m delighted it paid off, enabling the redevelopment to go ahead.”

Network Rail’s route managing director Jo Kaye said: “The station is used by three million people a year and it has long been recognised that there’s a need for additional car parking because more and more people are choosing to travel by train.

“The extra spaces created and the new retail outlets will bring even more people to the station for commuting, business and leisure travel – all of which will help grow the economy of Crewe.”

Chairman of All Change for Crewe Partnership Board John Lea said: “This is a brilliant step forwards for the regeneration of Crewe.”

Pop guru and rail enthusiast Pete Waterman, who is a board member of Cheshire and Warrington Local Enterprise Partnership, said: “This is fantastic news for Crewe. Improving the historic railway station is crucial to developing a modern, strategic transport hub in the town.”

Cheshire East hopes the £6.177m funding will be a springboard to attracting further investment from Government and the rail industry to achieve its ultimate ambition for the redevelopment of the station.

For further information about All Change for Crewe, visit the Council’s website at www.cheshireeast.gov.uk/allchangeforcrewe.

back to top

5 ways to contact Edward Timpson

New blue badge to be launched from New Year’s Day

 

A new blue badge for people with disabilities is being launched in Cheshire East as part of the Government’s reform programme.

The redesigned badge will be available from New Year’s Day and will make it easier for those with severe mobility problems to park close to where they need to go.

It will also enable the Council to crack down on those who may be fraudulently using a badge.

From January 1, 2012, badges will be much harder to alter, copy or forge and will be made of a combination of PVC and PET, instead of cardboard, and will be more robust.

It follows the Government’s announcement earlier this year to modernise the blue badge scheme, which currently costs the country an estimated £46m per year.

There are 24,000 blue badges in circulation in Cheshire East and approximately 50 are renewed daily. Badges will cost £10, to cover the costs of administration, production and postage. This is the first price increase in almost 30 years.

Councillor David Brown, Cabinet member with responsibility for performance and capacity, said: “This national initiative will help Cheshire East to combat forgeries which can lead to legitimate blue badge holders losing out. The changes will also improve customer service and speed up the time it takes to renew them.

“Residents will still be able to apply directly to Cheshire East Council for a badge, which will be valid for three years.

“Holders will be able to park for free in all Cheshire East car parks and on single or double yellow lines for up to three hours, except where there is a ban on loading or unloading.”

Cheshire East Council is undertaking a full engagement programme with stakeholders and groups affected by these changes.

Madelyn Bridge, Chief Executive for Age UK Cheshire East, said: “The blue badge scheme is essential to anyone with severe mobility problems, keeping them active and engaged in the community for as long as possible. Anything that can be done to reduce fraud and keep the scheme fair for the people who really need it, has to be a good thing.”

For more information on the changes to the blue badge, or to apply for one, visit www.cheshireeast.gov.uk/bluebadge or call Cheshire East Council on 0300 123 50

Stay Warm, Stay Well, Stay Safe – Severe winter weather preparations

 

 

The question on everyone's lips is were have the gritters been all days in Crewe

With stockpiles of salt, a new information centre and modern gritting vehicles – Cheshire East Council says its coping well with the current wintry conditions.

As part of the Cheshire East Adult Safeguarding Board’s ‘Stay Warm, Stay Well, Stay Safe’ campaign, the authority is reminding residents of its preparations and current actions in terms of gritting and snow-ploughing.

Councillor Rod Menlove, Cabinet member with responsibility for environmental services, said: “Winter weather can be a worrying time for many people, especially those who need to travel. We aim to be as informative as possible in the event of severe weather conditions.

“I want to reassure residents that we have already dealt with snow and ice in Cheshire East this winter and this will continue in the weeks and months ahead.”

The authority has been stock piling salt for gritting since the summer and now has new types of gritting vehicles.

Duty officers receive detailed weather reports, around the clock, during the winter months. These officers then decide if gritting vehicles or snow-ploughs are required.

Thanks to Cheshire East Council’s online Highways Information Centre, gritting vehicles can be tracked live as they salt local routes; www.cheshireeast.gov.uk/highways

Councillor Menlove continued: “The monitoring of weather conditions here in Cheshire East never stops during the winter months. Gritting vehicles or snow-ploughs can be dispatched in minutes in the event of conditions deteriorating quickly.

“Freezing temperatures usually result in gritting taking place twice a day – once in the early hours of the morning and again in the evening – but this can be increased or decreased according the conditions that day. Crews have been sent out regularly over the past few weeks to salt the roads, particularly on higher ground.

“We cannot guarantee that the route will be completely ice or snow-free – what we can do is ensure that every effort is made to keep salt stocks high, monitor weather conditions and take the appropriate action.”

Derek Thomas, the independent chair of the local Adult Safeguarding Board, said: “Frozen steps, footpaths and roads, as well as the extra hours of darkness and reduced visibility, bring obvious additional risks such as falls and involvement in road traffic accidents.

“For older people, a relatively gentle fall can result in a serious fracture. For Cheshire East’s most vulnerable citizens, winter can also mean increased loneliness and isolation.

“With this in mind, I would urge those who feel most vulnerable to ask a friend, family member or neighbour to help them out with simple but important daily routines such as their food shopping or getting rubbish out to their bins. It is also really important that car drivers significantly reduce their speeds in built up areas.”

Did you know?

•          Cheshire East Council manages and maintains 2,970km of roads.

•          The winter service operates from three depots; Brunswick Wharf in Congleton, Wardle near Nantwich and Lyme Green in Macclesfield. The highways service also operates directly from Winsford Salt mine.

•          We have 6,000 tonnes of salt stored across the authority ready for the start of the winter service period. Salt can also be loaded directly from Winsford Salt Mine

•          All gritting routes can be found on the Cheshire East Council website, www.cheshireeast.gov.uk/highways

•          From the onset of winter, road surface temperatures and road conditions are monitored on a 24/7 basis, using detailed forecast maps.

•          50 operatives are trained to deal with winter conditions in Cheshire East, using 20 vehicles to carry out precautionary treatments and snow clearance.

•          Cheshire East Council has two snow blowers. These all-wheel drive vehicles are capable of moving up to 400 tonnes of snow per hour.

•          We also have a number of local farming contractors that deal with the more rural locations during extreme weather.

Man sentenced for attempting to abduct two teenagers in Congleton

Nizar Ibrahim

A man has been sentenced after being convicted of attempting to abduct two teenagers in Congleton.

Nizar Ibrahim, born 18/05/80 of Repington Road, Sneyd Green, Stoke, was convicted of two counts of attempted abduction at Chester Crown Court and was sentenced to seven and a half years in prison on Tuesday 13 December 2011.

On 25 July 2011, Ibrahim tried to force two teenage girls into his car. The first incident happened at around 7.30pm when he approached a 14-year-old girl on Biddulph Road. She managed to break free and run home. Just over an hour later at 8.45pm he approached a 16-year-old girl on Moody Street and again tried to pull her towards his car. The girl hit Ibrahim to the face, broke free from his grip and ran home.

Ibrahim was arrested in the Congleton area a short time later.

Detective Constable Michael Baron from Crewe CID said: "It was only due to the quick thinking and brave actions of the young girls that Ibrahim was unable to pull them into his car. They have then been required to give evidence in Crown Court and it is to their credit that they have delivered their evidence in such daunting circumstances.

"Ibrahim is clearly a dangerous man and only he knows what his intentions were when he tried to drag these girls into his car. Fortunately incidents like this are rare and thanks to the information given by the victims and quick actions by the police Ibrahim was located and arrested within the hour I hope this sentence sends a message of reassurance to the residents of Congleton as to how serious both the police and the courts treat these matters."

Men sentenced for burglary in Crewe -

 

Three men have been sentenced to over four years in prison for a burglary in Crewe.

Simon Walton, 26, of HMP Altcourse was sentenced to around 2 years and four months (876 days) in prison after pleading guilty to burglary at Chester Crown Court on Friday 9 December 2011.

Matthew Cooke, 22, of Fenshawe Walk, Crewe, and Daniel Bolshaw, 30, of Sorbus Drive, Crewe, also pleaded guilty to burglary and were both sentenced to 12 months in prison.

The men broke into a house on Newdigate Street, Crewe on Friday 9 September 2011. They smashed an upstairs window and stole a 32inch Hitachi LCD TV. No one was in the house at the time.

Detective Constable Dave Newton from Crewe CID said: "Burglary is a serious offence that has a long lasting effect on victim′s who feel violated that their home and personal space has been invaded. Cheshire Police is committed to catching the people responsible and bringing them before the courts to make them face up to the heartache and fear they cause for innocent victims."

Kids count - say Cheshire's emergency services

 

Kids count was a joint message delivered by the joint emergency services Think Drive Survive team and youth organisation Kidscount in Westminster, London, on Monday the 5th December.

Think Drive Survive is a Cheshire emergency services course which started in 2000. The course brings together people who have a wealth of experience and knowledge in dealing with road traffic collisions and aims to impact on the driving behaviour of young people. Officers from police, fire, ambulance and highways are accompanied by the mother of a victim, and together the team deliver an interactive and powerful course that can have profound impact on a young driver.

The invitation to the Think Drive Survive team came from Kidscount and provided an opportunity for the two organisations to influence those with a keen interest in road safety issues with one message - kids count.

Young people from the youth organisation joined members of the Think Drive Survive team to talk to MPs and members of media about the Saving Lives campaign which, like Think Drive Survive, aims to influence, educate and change behaviours of young people to make the right choices. Kidcount are asking people to go online and sign up to the Saving Lives campaign at www.kidscount.org.uk/savinglives.

Speaking about the course, The Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Transport, Mike Penning MP, described the Think Drive Survive Course as ‘Brilliant′. Other MPs present commented on the Think Drive Survive presentation indicating their support for the course to become best practise when dealing with young drivers.

The course is an educational experience that lays bare the risks to young people of driving. Sitting through the presentations is an emotional and resonant experience that stays with the young driver for a long time and is designed to amend their driving behaviour. The course is an excellent example of collaborative working between the public sector and local people to tackle the route cause of collisions and to change and influence the attitudes of young drivers. Nearly 15,000 young road users have benefited from it over the last 12 years. The course has evolved over the years and has even received a Prince Michael of Kent International Road Safety award in 2006.

Recent Independent evaluation concluded that the course showed that it had had a ′significant and positive shift in the attitudes of participants as a direct result of the course.′

There are over 30 courses planned for 2012 and anyone requiring further information about the course can contact the Cheshire Police Road Safety Officer, PC Dave Murray on 01606 362316 or the Cheshire Fire and Rescue Service Assistant Road Safety Manager, Peter Shields on 01606 868681. peter.shields@cheshirefire.gov.uk

Cheshire East cracks down on £70,000 benefits cheat

 

A Cheshire East benefits cheat has been jailed after he was found guilty of fraudulently claiming nearly £70,000 over six years.

Following an extensive investigation by the Council’s benefit investigations team, Sohail Uddin, 41, was sentenced to 24 weeks in prison (on Monday, December 12) at Chester Crown Court.

Uddin, of Delamere Court, Crewe, pleaded guilty to the charges on November 17.

The overpayment of £68,406 was in relation to offences committed against the Department of Work and Pensions and Cheshire East Council between January 13, 2003 and September 20, 2009.

Uddin fraudulently claimed income support, severe disablement benefit, housing benefit and council tax benefit.

Councillor David Brown, Cheshire East Cabinet member with responsibility for performance and capacity, said: “Cheshire East Council will not tolerate people shirking their responsibilities and cheating honest taxpayers. Such selfish fraudsters will be rigorously pursued through the courts and brought to justice.

“Benefit fraud robs hard-working communities of valuable resources needed to provide vital public services. Such criminal acts rob councils and the Government of hard-pressed funds that could be spent helping the most vulnerable and needy people in our communities.

“As a Council, we would not be serving taxpayers well if we did not take action against a selfish minority of people who try to dodge their responsibilities and defraud the public purse.”

The Council and the Department for Work and Pensions will seek to recover in full the overpayment of benefits to Uddin.

Cheshire East Youth Theatre expands – by popular demand!

 

Cheshire East Youth Theatre is proving such a hit that it is branching out to showcase a new older group of talent. 

Cheshire East Youth Theatre (CEYT), which is organised by Cheshire East Council and based at the Lyceum Theatre, is collectively Crewe, Sandbach and Alsager youth theatres and, until now, has catered for young people aged from five to 18.

But it has proved such a success that it is adding a new age group – for young people aged 17 to 25 – following the popularity of its classes and the desire of older students to keep involved with CEYT after turning 19.

The new group, based at the Lyceum, will perform the hit play Billy Liar, by Keith Waterhouse and Willis Hall, at the Lyceum, next July 1.

The group, which aims to be semi-professional, will be an exciting opportunity for young people to work with a highly-experienced, professional director who has also acted in West End productions. It will also allow young people to build on their acting skills and learn techniques that will help them with future careers in showbusiness.

Councillor Jamie Macrae, Cabinet member with responsibility for prosperity, said: “Youth theatre is a tremendous opportunity for youngsters to learn a multitude of skills that will stand them in good stead for their whole lives.

“It is also a wonderful place for young people to meet other people, spread their creative wings and learn more about the theatre and possible future careers in the industry. It is pleasing to see that the youth theatre is expanding to cater for older youngsters, by popular demand.”

Aspiring actor Alex Lyon, 18, said: “I am so excited that there will be a new group at CEYT for older members and, as an aspiring actor, I am going to learn so much more. I can’t wait!”

CEYT recently showcased its youngsters’ talents at a vibrant event to celebrate the 100th birthday of Crewe’s Lyceum Theatre.

CEYT is now made up of eight groups. Lyceum Youth Theatre has five age groups: five to seven; eight to 10; 11 to 13; 14 to 16; and 17 to 25, based in the theatre’s rehearsal room. Alsager Youth Theatre, based in Alsager Community Church Hall, has two groups: seven to 11; and 12+. Sandbach Youth Theatre, based in Sandbach Town Hall, has one group for youngsters aged seven to 11.

Members get the chance to attend workshops and tread the boards of the Lyceum Theatre stage, as well as perform at other local venues and regional festivals. No previous experience is necessary and there are no auditions needed. 

The new group, for young people aged 17-25, will rehearse at the Lyceum Theatre every Thursday, from 6.30pm to 8.30pm. The fee for the first 11-week term, which starts on January 12, is £55.

Anyone interested in joining Cheshire East Youth Theatre should ring co-ordinator Hayley Lindley on 07709 180296 or email her at: ceyt@cheshireeast.gov.uk

Tuesday, 13 December 2011

Volunteers Come Forward to Support the Willaston Pre-school

100_0638

Willaston Pre- School are pleased to announce that they have recently appointed Pat Harborth to be their new Chairperson.The Pre-school are very grateful to Councillor Brian Silvester and Dawn Clark, Community Development Officer for Cheshire East, for their assistance in asking the local community for their support and have been overwhelmed with the response and kind sentiments they have received.

Willaston Borough Councillor Brian Silvester said, " I am delighted that the call that I and others made for people to come forward to help the  pre school group has been so successful. It is encouraging that so many local people are willing to give so freely of their time. I am sure that the pre school group will now go from strength to strength and continue to be a real asset to the educational provision in our local community." 

The Pre-school are also pleased to announce that in the Ofsted inspection carried out on the 15th November they were rated Good overall with some Outstanding features.  Ann Darlington, Pre-school Supervisor says that "Not only has the recent publicity resulted in the successful appointment of a new Chairperson and Vice Chairperson, it has also attracted the attention of an Early Years teacher and an eminent Professor of Early Childhood Education, who have offered their help and support. The Pre-school is set to continue to flourish now and has only a few spaces currently available for this academic year.  We are taking names for new starters in September 2012 however.  More information can be obtained via the website www.willastonpre-school.org.uk or by contacting the Pre-school on 07966 368423. For admission enquiries call 07944 208909."

Drivers get Speed Awareness Message

Speed Awareness Course

The chairman of Cheshire Police Authority says drivers completing speed awareness courses learn "real lessons for the future."

Margaret Ollerenshaw watched one of the four- hour courses which are offered to selected drivers who are caught speeding on Cheshire′s roads. They are an alternative to a fine and penalty points.

She said, "Most people obviously took the option of the course to avoid the penalty points. Some arrived with a very sceptical attitude. Some felt that because they were only driving a few miles above the speed limit, no action should have been taken.

"By the time they left, I think everyone felt they had a deeper understanding of why speed limits exist. They realised the importance of observing the limits and the risk to life if you don′t. They also appreciated that driving faster doesn′t necessarily get you to your destination more quickly. Most said they felt they would be better drivers as a result of the course."

Bill Ward and Gill Sandham were in charge of the classroom- based course. Gill said, "It is not a finger-wagging exercise but a group discussion. You cannot change someone′s attitude in four hours but you can make them think.

Bill added, "If you just give people rules, they switch off. You have to give them reasons which they can understand. We break some of the urban myths about speed cameras, too."

They said the reaction of the group watched by the Police Authority chairman was typical of the response to the course.

"Many people start by being very reluctant to take part, but they find themselves drawn into the discussion and leave with plenty to think about."

Superintendent Penny Wilson, in charge of road policing for Cheshire Police, said "The speed awareness course is about improving safety on Cheshire′s roads by educating drivers. We only offer the course when we believe it will be effective. Drivers pay a £75 fee and if they re-offend during the next three years they will not be offered the course option on the second occasion."

Sunday, 11 December 2011

Cheshire Building Society ripping off pensioners and the poor

 

Isurance3f

The Cheshire Building Society appears to be robbing pensioners and other vulnerable people blind. They have forced people to have their building cover with them if they have a mortgage. If you cant afford to pay the £300+ they add it onto the mortgage and as such this is then subject to interest every year which is then compounded. The miss selling of insurance has only just come to light as a new company is now demanding the money as the Cheshire no longer take the money from you account.

The new insurance typically came to £362 which pensioners cant afford but a check on compare website above  every quote was well under this price most were as little as 58 pounds for the same house. So the Cheshire had been ripping people off to the tune of over £300 per year. If its then added to the mortgage that capital will remain on there for 20 years with the interest accumulating every year so atypical mortgage could have £10,000 or more added to it.

The basic cost for people who have had a mortgage for 22 years is £6,650 plus interest. There seems to be no reason why the insurance should be so expensive as the cover level is the same for £58. One assumes that a reputable company would give professional advice to customers and arrange insurance at a reasonable price not extortionate price. All prices from the compare sites are well known companies not back street ones.

I fail to see how the Cheshire build Society can justify this massive cost a few pound maybe but over £300 is a lot of money. If you have insurance with them for your building I suggest you take a good look at it and us compare sites then ask the Cheshire build Society why they have ripped you off for years and years. This is worse than PPI and they should hang there heads in shame as some people may now never own their own home with these extra cost added

Saturday, 10 December 2011

Be a good winter neighbour in Cheshire East

 

Cheshire East Council and its partners are urging residents to ‘be a good winter neighbour’ this season.

As part of the Cheshire East Adult Safeguarding Board’s ‘Stay Warm, Stay Well, Stay Safe’ campaign, the Council would like people to check in on their friends and neighbours, especially if they are older, or have a disability or chronic illness as they may need your help and our support.

The winter cold can be distressing to some and Cheshire East has put together a wealth of detail in one place at www.cheshireeast.gov.uk/winter where residents can find advice on a wide range of topics from heating, eating and winter safety to school closures and public transport.

As part of this campaign, the Council has listed some winter warning signs for residents, who should always be on the lookout for signs that something might be wrong:

  • Milk still out on the doorstep late in the day
  • Newspapers and post stuck in the letterbox
  • Curtains drawn during the day
  • Lights on during the day
  • A home in darkness when there should be someone at home
  • A dog barking all day or the cat scratching to be let in
  • Bins not put out on collection days

Information sheets are also being passed around, with important contact details for residents to use should they have any concerns about their safety or for the safety of others in the neighbourhood. These will soon be available in all libraries and customer service points in Cheshire East.

Derek Thomas, the independent chair of the Adult Safeguarding Board, said: “The Board’s job is to promote the safety of vulnerable citizens across Cheshire East so we welcome the plans of the Council, NHS and their many partners to identify and protect those most at risk.

“It is ordinary citizens with a strong sense of personal responsibility whose vigilance and action will make it possible for their family members, friends and neighbours to feel well supported and safe. YOU can make a difference to these people.”

Councillor Roland Domleo, Cabinet member with responsibility for adult services and health and wellbeing, said: “Cheshire East Council and its partners are always here to help and the winter page on our website and information sheets provide a wealth of advice and contact details.

“These could be for those who are worried about an adult and are looking for social care support or who are looking for services to support families or children.”

  • For concerns about the welfare or safety of an adult, call 0300 123 5010 (8.30am-5pm) or 0300 123 5022 outside these hours;
  • The Family Information Service is available on 0300 123 5033;
  • For concerns about the welfare or safety of a child, call 0300 123 5012 (8.30am-5pm) or 0300 123 5022 outside these hours;
  • For domestic abuse assistance, call the Cheshire East Domestic Abuse Family Safety Unit on 01606 363532 or the national 24 hour helpline on 0808 2000 247.

Residents with internet access can help their friends and neighbours by downloading and printing off the Stay Warm, Stay Well, Stay Safe information sheet from the website and giving it to them.

Meanwhile, Twitter users can follow ‘CheshireEast’ for all latest winter news.

Services back to normal following strike action

 

Cheshire East Council services are back to normal, following trade union strike action last Wednesday (November 30).

Waste collections were affected after the 24-hour industrial action but all other services were adequately staffed and services for adults, children and families ran smoothly.

Cheshire East Council had one of the highest turnout rates in the North West with only 25% of employees taking part in the strikes.

There were 111 exemptions and around 75% of the total workforce attended work as normal. Picket lines were present at several council buildings but demonstrations were peaceful.

Chief executive of Cheshire East Council, Erika Wenzel, said: “The day of industrial action naturally put a strain on services but we are pleased to report that despite this, services ran efficiently and complaints were kept to a minimum.

“I would like to thank all staff who attended work in what could have been difficult circumstances. Turning up for work meant that the Council was able to continue delivering services, particularly to those who are most vulnerable.”

However, a regular question that has been asked is “why did we not plan for the non-collection of waste?”

Although the day of action was publicised for some time it was impossible to know exactly how many staff would take industrial action and this made contingency planning very difficult.

The industrial action affected a large number of households across Cheshire East and that means it is impossible to catch up on the missed collections without disrupting many other residents within the Borough whose collections were scheduled for the subsequent days.

However, if Cheshire East Council is made aware of any residents that have very specific needs and are in severe difficulty, staff will do their very best to assist them.

Awards hail Cheshire East tourism businesses

 

Cheshire East’s top-performing tourism businesses have been hailed at a major awards ceremony – scooping four awards and two commendations.

The prestigious Marketing Cheshire Annual Awards 2011 recognised the outstanding work delivered by all sectors of the tourism and hospitality industry and the professionals who work in it.

Held at the West Cheshire College Creative and Services Campus, 300 guests attended an Oscars-style evening hosted by BBC North West Tonight presenter Dianne Oxberry.

This year’s winners included Jodrell Bank Discovery Centre, which won ‘Small Visitor Attraction of the Year’.

Peckforton Castle walked away with two awards ‘Excellence in Business Tourism’ and a ‘Special Recognition’ award for Daniel Naylor, Paul Healey and Simon Oxley who helped guests to safety during the recent fire.

‘Self-Catering Holiday Provider of the Year’ went to Mellow Brook Cottage, at Harrop Fold Farm, near Macclesfield and Kerridge End Holiday Cottages secured the ‘Sustainable Tourism Awards’ for their luxurious five-star self-catering holiday cottages, also near Macclesfield.

Councillor Jamie Macrae, Cheshire East Council Cabinet member with responsibility for prosperity, said: “The visitor economy is an important contributor to businesses and communities in Cheshire East, generating more than £653m a year to the local economy.

“These awards are an excellent way to reward and promote the rich quality and diversity of visitor economy facilities and attractions across Cheshire. They also acknowledge and celebrate the considerable dedication and flair of the people who help make Cheshire such a special place to visit.”

Self-catering holiday provider of the year-winner Sue Stevenson, owner of Mellow Brook Cottage, at Harrop Fold Farm, said: “We are thrilled to win this prestigious award for our newly-refurbished five-star cottage.

“We have spent months lovingly restoring the 17th century barn and this award is a real boost to our staff and customers.”

Chief executive of Marketing Cheshire Chris Brown said: “With a visitor economy valued at £1.78bn and supporting over 27,000 jobs, the evening was a fantastic way to give the industry and individual businesses the recognition they deserve. The winners will go straight through to compete at England level and potentially be the best in the country!”

Full list of winners:

Self-Catering Holiday Provider of the Year
WINNER - Mellow Brook Cottage at Harrop Fold Farm
Excellence in Business Tourism    
WINNER - Peckforton Castle
Large Visitor Attraction of the Year  
WINNER - Chester Zoo
Bed and Breakfast of the Year
WINNER – Churton Heath Farm B&B
Best Tourism Experience of the Year 
WINNER - Roman Tours Ltd       
Small Visitor Attraction 
WINNER – Jodrell Bank Discovery Centre
Taste of Cheshire Award
WINNER - Roses Tea Rooms
Sustainable Tourism Award  
WINNER - Kerridge End Holiday Cottages
Best Tourism Event of the Year
WINNER - Dinosaurs at Large – Chester Zoo
HIGHLY COMMENDED – Jodrell Bank Discovery Centre, Live Music Event
Small Hotel of the Year  
WINNER - Green Bough Hotel and Olive Tree Restaurant
HIGHLY COMMENDED – Peckforton Castle
Holiday Park of the Year 
WINNER - Manor Wood Country Caravan Park
Rising Star Award
WINNER – Leanne Shaw, The Park Royal Hotel
RUNNER UP – Tori Hayes, Cruise Chester
RUNNER UP – Barry Turner, Best Western Premier Queen Hotel
Large Hotel of the Year 
WINNER - The Chester Grosvenor

Green light for £27m Crewe Green Link Road gives massive boost to ambitious regeneration scheme

 

Cheshire East Council is celebrating securing £16m of Government funding that gives ‘the green light’ to construction of a key link road that will help unlock the economic potential of Crewe.

The £27m Crewe Green Link Road South project will be another major step forward in realising the long-term regeneration of the town and surrounding region – following the announcement on Monday of £6.177m Government investment in Crewe Rail Station.

Both schemes are central to the Council-backed ambitious plans to regenerate and revitalise the town centre and surrounding area. This vision is called ‘All Change for Crewe’

The 1.1km-long dual-carriageway link road, which will run between the A500 Hough-Shavington bypass and the A5020, will create an alternate bypass for Crewe, improving access to the A500 and M6 and alleviate traffic passing through the town.

It is also hoped it will unlock the potential of two major employment sites at Basford and help facilitate the creation of up to 12,500 jobs in high-value employment over the next 20 years.

Cheshire East Council Leader Councillor Wesley Fitzgerald said: “This announcement (on Tuesday, November 29) by the Chancellor is absolutely marvellous news – not only for Crewe but also for Cheshire East as a whole.

“At last people are listening to the needs of Crewe and aspirations can now begin to be turned into reality.

“This is a major project which is central to our All Change for Crewe plans to greatly enhance the future prosperity of Crewe and the surrounding region to make it a nationally significant economic centre by 2030 – with population growth and a highly skilled workforce to meet employers’ future need.

“It will support sustainable economic growth, improving connectivity between areas of deprivation to the north of Crewe, the town centre, the rail station and major employment opportunities to the south east.

“Securing the delivery of Crewe Green Link Road South has required us all, with our local MP Edward Timpson, to stand together behind our economic vision for Crewe and I think this has been a major factor in our recent successes.

“Alongside the announcement of £6.177m for Crewe Rail Station earlier this week, this latest funding will act as a catalyst for further commercial investment and demonstrates to the people of Crewe that this Council is fully committed to the economic growth and wider prosperity of not only Crewe but of Cheshire East as a whole.”

The new link road is a project with a long history and Cheshire East Council is delighted that it has unlocked the land assembly issues over the past two years and now secured the DfT funding required to make it a reality.

The Council and key developers have committed £6.65m and £4.13m respectively to meet the outstanding funding for the Crewe Green Link Road South.

Crewe and Nantwich MP Edward Timpson said: “I am delighted that the Chancellor has announced in his Autumn Statement that the Government is to go ahead and fund the proposed Crewe Green Link Road.

“I have lobbied George Osborne and successive Secretaries of State for Transport hard – both Labour and Conservative – to build this key piece of highway, and this Government has listened.

“It is crucial for Crewe's future economic and housing growth and will unlock the potential of two major employment sites at Basford, bringing our area an extra £250m a year through the creation of up 12,500 jobs over the next 20 years.”

For further information about All Change for Crewe, visit the Council’s website at www.cheshireeast.gov.uk/allchangeforcrewe