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Tuesday, 28 January 2020

The 7th annual ‘Holly Holy Day author event’

Reporter Jonathan White

The 7th annual ‘Holly Holy Day author event’, organised by the Nantwich Book Shop & Coffee Lounge, took place at Nantwich Bookshop & Coffee Lounge on 46 High Street in the centre of Nantwich on Friday 24th January 2020. The event took place on the evening before the annual Holly Holy Day ‘Battle of Nantwich’ re-enactment - www.battleofnantwich.org - in the town.

Holly Holy Day traces back to the 17th century and the four-year-long First English Civil War between the Parliamentarians (Roundheads) and the Royalists (Cavaliers) loyal to Charles I.

The event was compered by English Civil War re-enactor & historical fiction writer David Wilson (pen name, DW Bradbridge) and featured Civil War authors Margaret Cooper Evans, writer of ‘The Women of the English Civil War’; Norah Carlin, whose work includes ‘The Causes Of the English Civil War’; and Mark Turnbull, historical fiction writer of 'Allegiance of Blood'.

Margaret Cooper Evans is a historical writer and re-enactor. A living history interpreter and a speaker on the lives of women in the 17th Century. She joined The Sealed Knot re-enactment society in 1996. Since then she has played the part of a Baggage Woman, a Musketeer, Goodwyfe, a Lady, and a Farmers Wife on the Living History camp. Her research culminated in her first factual History book: The Women of the English Civil War published in 2015. She makes 17th Century clothing and cooks authentic 17th Century food. Margaret has had articles in the mainstream British press and specialist historical magazines. She lives in Oxfordshire with her husband and two cats.

Norah Carlin was a Principal Lecturer in History at Middlesex University (London). She is the author of numerous books and a number of articles on aspects of the seventeenth-century English revolution. Having moved back to her native Edinburgh some years ago, she is currently pursuing research on the kirk and rural society in Scotland in the century after the Reformation.

Mark Turnbull, after a visit to Helmsley Castle at the age of 10, bought a pack of ‘top trump’ cards featuring the monarchs of England. The card portraying King Charles I fascinated him. Van Dyck’s regal portrait of the King and the fact that he was executed by his own people were the beginnings of Mark's passionate interest in the English Civil War that has lasted ever since. In the absence of time travel, he thoroughly enjoys bringing this period to life through writing. He has written articles for magazines, local newspapers and online educational sites. He has also re-enacted battles with The Sealed Knot and for several years edited the Historical Novel Society's online newsletter.

Denise Lawson, Nantwich Book Shop & Coffee Lounge, said, “Thank you to the three authors for coming to Nantwich to talk about their books. We thank everyone for their support and hope that they enjoyed an informative evening.”

For further information relating to books written by the authors please visit Nantwich Bookshop & Coffee Lounge at 46 High Street in Nantwich, or contact via phone: 01270 611665, email: info@nantwichbookshop.co.uk , or Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/NantwichBookshopCoffeeshop/

Other Nantwich Bookshop & Coffee Lounge author events in the near future:

-Tuesday 28th January - David Maidment talks about his latest work, in collaboration with Paul Carpenter, ‘Cambrian Railway Gallery’. The book is full of magnificent comprehensive early photographs of Cambrian engines and Oswestry Works. Quentin McGuiness who was Project Head on the Grange Locomotive restoration will be in attendance as well on the evening. Tickets are £7.50 per person, which includes snacks and a £2.50 discount upon book purchase. Cash Bar. Doors open at 6:30pm for a 7pm start.

-Tuesday 25th February - An Evening with Prue & Peta Leith - Prue & Peta Leith will be in Nantwich to promote their new cookbook, 'The Vegetarian Kitchen'. 'The Vegetarian Kitchen' includes one hundred delicious, heartwarming vegetarian and vegan recipes from Prue Leith - the founder of Leiths School of Food and Wine, chef and Bake Off judge - and her niece Peta Leith, former pastry sous chef at the Ivy and lifelong vegetarian. The evening will include an introduction, a forty-five minute talk, question & answer session and book signing. The event will be held at Malbank School on Welsh Row, Nantwich CW5 5HD. Tickets = £20 per person, which includes a copy of 'The Vegetarian Kitchen' (RRP £25) and a glass of Prosecco, Bucks Fizz or orange juice on arrival. There will also be a cash bar, run by Malbank School for their school funds. Doors open 6pm for a 7pm start.

Local care home resident raises money for charity


A care home resident in Crewe raised £176 for a local hospital charity.

Alan Gibbs raised the money for Mid Cheshire Hospitals Charity’s Lost Little Ones baby bereavement suite appeal by cycling the equivalent distance of Land’s End to John O’Groats.

Alan, a keen cycler in his youth, completed the bike ride in the lounge of Cypress Court Care Home, where he is a resident, using a static bike. As well as the money for the appeal Alan also raised a further £176 which he donated to the residents fund at the home.

The baby bereavement suite is a dedicated area and attached outside space on the labour ward at Leighton Hospital that will allow parents to stay together for a few hours or days with their baby.

Speaking about the ride, Alan said: ““My father-in-law had cycled from Land’s End to John O’Groats at the age of 65 and it had always been my goal to do the same.

“I thought my health issues had put paid to that but when it was suggested I do it on a static bike I knew I had to give it a go.”

Carole Salmon, MCH Charity Community Fundraiser, said: “It was a pleasure to meet Alan and to thank him for the money he has raised and to hear about his fantastic cycling achievement and fundraising.”

The Mid Cheshire Hospitals Charity is keen to share information about how local groups and organisations can be supported in their fundraising efforts by them. Contact Carole Salmon, Community Fundraiser, on 01270 273248 / 07467 687998 / carole.salmon@mcht.nhs.uk for further information.

The Andrews Panto & Plays Society

Reporter Jonathan White

The Andrews Panto & Plays Society (TAPPS) performed the musical pantomime ‘Alice in Wonderland’ at St Andrew's Church Hall, Bedford Street, Crewe in mid-January this year.

‘Alice in Wonderland’ featured a mixture of song, dance, silliness, and audience participation.

There were also refreshments, a raffle and a lucky programme number draw during the interval. The lucky programme number winner at each performance received a star prize donated by Tesco Extra (Vernon Way, Crewe), Mrs Darlington (Lancaster Fields, Crewe), and Mornflake (Gresty Road, Crewe).

TAPPS received a good luck message from Bobby Ball, who recently performed in panto at the Crewe Lyceum. The message read: ‘Hi everyone, Sorry I can’t be with you this panto season because I am really very busy with my own this year and other things after, but I wish you every success and hope in fact I know it will be a huge success. Once again have a good one. God bless everyone. Bobby Ball’

‘Alice in Wonderland’ played to 300 people over four performances.

Money from this year’s 2020 pantomime will go to St Andrew's Church and charities, plus a small amount will be held in reserve for future TAPPS productions. TAPPS have given away over £6,000 in the years since its formation.

TAPPS Panto Director Fred Allman said: “This has been a great production and I am very proud of all those who have been involved.  It was especially good to have new young faces in our company this year. Our pantos seem to get better with each year and feedback from audiences has been very positive.  We actually had a standing ovation from our Saturday night audience and more people have asked about joining us as a result of watching the show.”

TAPPS was formed in November 2014 to stage a panto for the local community in the St Andrews Church area. Since then the society has grown and includes many people from the local community and further afield, working together with church members. Since the formation the society has staged six pantos, five variety shows and hosted several play reading evenings. Some members have been involved in dramatic presentations in St Andrews Church. The society enjoys a social life with theatre trips, country walks and other events throughout the year. TAPPS is non-profit making so any money goes to charities and the church.

For further information relating to TAPPS please phone Fred on 07949524798.

Crewe Residents Meet Police Leaders To Discuss Issues In Their Area



Road safety, county lines and young people were high on the agenda in Crewe as residents met with Cheshire’s police and crime commissioner and chief constable to discuss policing issues in their area.
It was the latest in a series of public engagement events where local residents across Cheshire have been invited to put their questions about local policing to PCC David Keane and CC Darren Martland.
A number of residents and local community representatives attended the event at the North Street Café last night (Friday 23 January).
The PCC and the chief assured those in attendance that Cheshire police is carrying out a number of proactive initiatives to address some of the issues raised.
The Commissioner highlighted the work being done by local PCSOs to enforce speed limits in the town and surrounding villages. He talked about the Constabulary’s current campaign to raise awareness of the Fatal 5 – speeding, drink and drug-driving, using mobile phones, not wearing seatbelts and careless driving – and the fact that we had 46 deaths on our roads in 2018/19. He also stated his belief that average speed monitoring should be more widely rolled to help prevent further road deaths.
Another big focus was county lines and criminal exploitation of children, amid resident concerns that it was on the rise in the town. The Commissioner was concerned that young, vulnerable people are being criminalised and taken advantage of by organised crime groups.
He pointed to several factors, including the lack of opportunity, removal of services and education of young people.
The Chief Constable told the audience that policing alone would not solve the issue, and that partnership working was vital. He also sated the importance of involving the local community and praised the work of local PCSOs and police officers in gathering crucial intelligence and evidence.
Some of the audience wanted to know how the police were prioritising issues faced by our young people. The Chief Constable told them that the biggest challenge in the future is around cyber crime and other hidden harms which can’t necessarily be dealt with by police on the streets.
The Commissioner stated his hope that huge investment would be made on a national scale into keeping our children safe, and that his long-term vision is keeping communities and organisations working together to keep everyone safe.
PCC David Keane said: “It was great to see so many local residents with a real passion and dedication to making their communities safer give up their free time to attend this event.
“It was interesting to hear on a local level what the key policing issues are for people in Crewe and discuss how we make improvements to make their communities safer.
“With police resources more stretched than ever, it’s important that we talk to local people about their priorities for policing to ensure we are delivering the best possible service.
“I look forward to meeting more residents at our final two events in Runcorn and Warrington in the coming weeks.”
CC Darren Martland added: “We are committed to delivering a neighbourhood policing service and putting the priorities of local communities at the forefront of everything we do.
“Our officers and PCSOs forge strong relationships with our communities to ensure crime and anti-social behaviour is dealt with as quickly and as effectively as possible.
“We appreciate the feedback from local residents in the area and I would like to reassurance residents that the problems raised at the events are being dealt with proactively by the local policing team.”
There are two further events to take place in Runcorn and Warrington. Please check the Cheshire PCC website for further details www.cheshire-pcc.gov.uk
If you would like to submit a question for the PCC or chief constable ahead of the meetings, please email it to pcc@cheshire.pnn.police.uk

Cheshire East Council unveils new deputy cabinet member


Councillor Laura Crane has been appointed Cheshire East Council’s deputy cabinet member for highways and waste.

Cllr Crane is the Labour ward member for Sandbach Ettiley Heath and Wheelock and is a member of the constitution committee, community governance review sub-committee and both the corporate and environment and regeneration overview and scrutiny committees.

She is also a director of the council’s arms-length company Transport Services Solutions and sits on the Sandbach Partnership and Linden Bank Community Liaison Group.

Councillor Sam Corcoran, leader of Cheshire East Council, said: “I am very pleased to appoint Laura to this important role in a high-profile portfolio and know she will provide great support to cabinet member Cllr Brian Roberts. 

“Laura is a very capable councillor and I know she is passionate about serving our residents and helping deliver both a highways service and a waste service that people can be rightly proud of.”

Cllr Laura Crane, deputy cabinet member for highways and waste, said: “Every one of us relies on both the services within this portfolio, both can help us to work towards our climate change goals and I hope to encourage more community groups to join us on that journey.

“I am really looking forward to the challenges of my new role and of helping in the delivery of improved highways across our borough and a first-class waste and recycling service that is the envy of other authorities.

“I would like to thank the leader and my cabinet colleagues for their support and trust in appointing me to this new responsibility.”

Graffiti - See It Or Hear about It - Report It - Haslington Police



Good afternoon,
We have had an increase of graffiti in the Haslington Village and we need your help to find out who it is vandalising our beautiful village!
In the past couple of weeks there has been graffiti found around Haslington, and it needs to stop!
If you see anyone with a spray can or acting suspiciously around an area where there is graffiti then we urge you to please call 101 or 999 always in an emergency.
Those responsible need to know that there are consequences to their actions and defacing the areas of village is completely barbaric.
So far the side of a church hall building has been defaced as has a charity building.
Please, if you see something or hear anything around the village, please call 101. You can also contact us for non-emergencies on Facebook and Twitter under Haslington Police Facebook/Twitter.
Together we can stop this from happening.
Thank you for your support in advance and please be aware that all information and details stay confidential.

A new monthly ‘Walk & Talk’ group has been setup in Nantwich

Reporter Jonathan White

A new monthly ‘Walk & Talk’ group has been setup in Nantwich.

Karen Mills from Zen Occupational Health and Emma Dechoux from Inspired Learning have teamed up to organise a Walk & Talk in Nantwich on the first Sunday of every month.

Karen and Emma recognise the benefits that exercise, the outdoors and socialising has for mental health and are organising walks where everyone is welcome to join, meet new people or catch up with existing friends.

Walking improves self-esteem, mood and sleep quality, and it reduces stress, anxiety and fatigue. Physically active people have up to a 30% reduced risk of becoming depressed, and staying active helps those who are depressed recover.

The walks take place on the first Sunday of every month at 10am from Nantwich town square.

The walk goes to Nantwich Lake, around the lake and back again to Aroma Cafe where there is the option to join Karen and Emma for a coffee/tea and chat.

The walk is approx. 2 miles and all flat.

Everyone is welcome - adults, dogs, and children (supervised by an adult).

The next two walks are on Sunday 2nd February (10am) and Sunday 1st March (10am).

For further information please visit: https://www.facebook.com/walkandtalkwithkarenandemma/

Still time to comment on potential homes, rail and marina developments


A final round of public consultation is taking place to help shape a proposed housing, open space and marina project – which also includes hopes for a renewed passenger rail service in the borough.

The Brooks Lane area of Middlewich is earmarked for a range of new development opportunities, with aspirations for reintroducing passenger rail services to the town. Both Cheshire East Council and Cheshire West and Chester Council have expressed support for the re-opening of the Sandbach-Middlewich-Northwich line for passenger services.

While this is not within the gift of local councils, the authorities will continue to work with Network Rail, Transport for the North and the Cheshire and Warrington Local Enterprise Partnership to progress this.

Identified as a potential development site within the Cheshire East Local Plan Strategy, the Brooks Lane supplementary planning document details a vision to see an additional 200 homes, a marina, public open space, and cycling and walking routes.

Residents and all interested parties have until 4 March 2020 to express their views on the document, which shows how these development proposals could progress. This is the last round of consultation before a final blueprint is agreed and put before the council. Once adopted, the masterplan will become an important consideration whenever the council has to determine relevant planning applications.

The final draft supplementary planning document  and its associated statement of consultation, can be viewed and responded to at: https://bit.ly/311j1ai

It is also available for viewing at:

● Westfields, Middlewich Road, Sandbach CW11 1HZ;

● Delamere House, Delamere Street, Crewe CW1 2JZ;

● Macclesfield Town Hall, Macclesfield SK10 1EA.

You can also comment by emailing localplan@cheshireeast.gov.uk or in writing to the Spatial Planning Team, Cheshire East Council, Municipal Buildings, Earle Street, Crewe CW1 2BJ.

Winter Wellbeing – stay active during the colder months


Cheshire East Council and its partners are offering a range of advice and support to residents on how to keep warm, well and safe this winter.

This week, we urge people to keep active during the winter months.

If your new year’s resolution was to exercise more in 2020, you are not alone.

Regular exercise is great for your physical health and fitness and has also been proven to significantly improve your mental wellbeing. But it can be hard to stay motivated during these colder and darker months.

Councillor Jill Rhodes, Cheshire East Council cabinet member with responsibility for public health said: “It can be tempting to stay wrapped up indoors at this time of the year, but staying physically active during winter will help you to stay warm and has numerous health benefits.

“Regular, moderate exercise helps to reduce tiredness, anxiety and depression, improves your mood and quality of life, strengthens your muscles, joints and bones and reduces the risk of health problems.

“Exercise is also great for your mental wellbeing as you can meet new friends – preventing loneliness and isolation. There are many groups and classes available across Cheshire East that you can join. Speak to your GP if you have any concerns about exercising.”

If possible, you should try and get up and move around at least once an hour. If walking is difficult, chair-based exercises and simply moving your arms and legs can help to stave off winter-borne illnesses.

Donna Williamson, senior manager of health innovation at Everybody Sport and Recreation, the health and wellbeing charity that manages the council’s leisure centres, said: “It is really important to exercise regularly and an ideal way to start increasing your physical activity is a daily 20-30 minute walk.

“Whether you prefer indoor or outdoor activities, we have something for everybody, from Nordic walking to walking football and netball.

“If you are inactive, recovering from illness or have a long-term health condition, such as diabetes or hypertension etc, you can join our new Everybody Healthy programme. This is a 12-week exercise plan with our specialist health advisors to discuss your goals, provide advice and guidance on the appropriate exercise intervention required, specific to your condition and lots of support on your exercise journey.

“If you have a long-term health condition such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) or fibromyalgia, a disability, or struggle to exercise, ‘move it or lose it’ is a fantastic class that we offer. The classes have been developed by experts to help you to improve your flexibility, aerobic health and balance for greater strength. All the exercises can be carried out seated or standing, depending on your ability.

“In addition to this we have ‘escape’- a pain education and exercise programme for residents with low back pain and osteoarthritis of the knee and hip. Funded places are available.”

Exploring Cheshire East’s landscape and attractions on foot is another great way to keep active and have fun during winter. There is no better way to do this than through taking part in a Parkrun event.

Parkrun is a free, weekly event where you can walk, jog or run 5km on Saturday mornings at 9am. It doesn’t matter how fast or slow you walk, jog or run – what matters is being outside, being active and having fun. Local events are held in Wilmslow, Macclesfield, Congleton and Crewe. Find out more and register for free by visiting: www.parkrun.org.uk

Throughout the year, the council’s ranger service team runs a variety of activities and events in the borough’s parks and greenspace. You can find out more by visiting: www.cheshireeast.gov.uk and searching for ‘ranger service’.

If you want to get out and explore on your bike, make sure you wrap up warm and take your bike for a health check, to test that the tyres and brakes are in good condition. You should always wear reflective clothing and use bike lights and reflectors.

If you need support to live a healthier lifestyle, the ‘One You Cheshire East’ service is available. This includes information, advice and free services to help residents to eat well, drink less alcohol, move more, lose weight and be smoke free. More information can be found by visiting: www.oneyoucheshireeast.org or calling 0808 1643 202.

For further winter-related advice, visit: www.cheshireeast.gov.uk/livewell and scroll down to the winter wellbeing section. Advice can also be found on the council’s Facebook page: www.facebook.com/cheshireeastcouncil and on Twitter: @CheshireEast

Details of events taking place near you, which can help you to keep active, can also be found via the link: www.cheshireeast.gov.uk/livewell and clicking on the community activities tab.

Residents can help friends and neighbours, who do not have internet access, by downloading and printing off information from the website and giving it to them.

Tuesday, 21 January 2020

Scam - Banking Protocol



Good evening,
Victims in Cheshire are being targeted by fraudsters.
The fraudsters are claiming they are police officers and they are asking victims to assist with a covert investigation to catch corrupt banking staff.
The victims are told by the fraudsters to go to their local branch and make a large cash withdrawal of up to £20k.
The victim is coached to tell the bank staff it is for home improvements or loved ones.
The victim returns home and the cash is collected by a courier fraudster, never to be seen again.
There have been eight offences in Cheshire in December 2019 with a combined loss of almost £100k.
Please think,
BANKING PROTOCOL and notify the police on 101 or 999 where suspects are also present.

Last Chance To Have Your Say on Police Funding



A public consultation on how much council tax Cheshire residents pay towards policing will close at midnight this Sunday (26 January 2020).
The consultation asks local residents if they would support up to a maximum of £2 per month increase in the policing precept (for the average band D household).

If you’ve not done so already, you can complete the online survey here:
Have your say on police funding (opens in new window)
There has also been a number of face-to-face consultation events held in each of Cheshire’s eight local policing units.
When announcing the consultation earlier this month, Police and Crime Commissioner David Keane said: “Over the last decade police funding has been subject to stringent funding cuts from central Government. This has seen the policing budget in Cheshire decrease in real-terms year-on-year since 2010. In a decade where demand on policing has increased by one third, and become increasingly complex, the government’s programme of austerity has meant that Cheshire has suffered a big decrease in police officers, support staff posts and other essential resources as we’ve struggled with more than £60 million of real term cuts.
“Whilst imposing cuts nationally, central government has dictated the shift of the funding burden onto local residents, requiring commissioners to consult on raising the policing element of council tax. Whilst I believe that policing should be funded from government as the first responsibility of the state is keeping its people safe, I promised to protect our public and our public services and to carefully listen to the views of local residents.
“Historically, this annual consultation is set around the government’s Provisional Police Funding Settlement which local police services usually receive in December. Due to the late general election in 2019, police services are yet to receive their Provisional Funding Settlement for 2020/21 so we have to work on an assumption of the continuance of a flat-cash settlement from Government with no additional funding to support additional demand or to cover pay and price inflation. The chief constable has advised me to consult with Cheshire residents on a precept that enables him to deliver a police service which keeps our communities safe.
“At £200.44, the police element of band D council tax in Cheshire is currently the ninth lowest in the country. And thanks to the support of local residents in last year’s policing precept, we have delivered on our promise of locally recruiting 43 officers in the last nine months.
“We are also expecting to see some of the police officer posts, of the circa 21,000 that have been lost over the last decade, start to be replaced by the government funded national uplift programme. Cheshire are expecting to see 30 of these officers this year which will start to help us reverse the effects of austerity on policing but while these officers may be funded, there appears no protection for the current budget and for current officer numbers in Cheshire to be maintained.
“Therefore, the chief constable and I are asking residents and businesses in Cheshire if they are willing to support up to an extra £2 per month increase for the average band D household. This will enable the chief constable to invest in a number of areas which are operational threats for Cheshire Police including county lines, major crime and modern slavery and human trafficking.”

Award-winning Weston Christmas Light Display raises an incredible £32,540 for local children and young people


PHOTO OPPORTUNITY – Graham will be visiting The Donna Louise Hospice in February to hand over the cheque from his 2019 fundraising. More details to follow.

The Weston Christmas Light Display shone bright once again throughout December and its founder and organiser Graham Witter has announced that the 2019 display has raised a phenomenal £32,540 for The Donna Louise Hospice for children and young people.

For the seventh year running, 25 year old Graham transformed his family home and garden into a Winter Wonderland with thousands of twinkling lights, decorations and animated silhouettes.

The success of December’s display has taken Graham’s overall fundraising total for the hospice to a breath-taking £124,850 in the seven years since he founded this community fundraising event.

And to top off the display’s outstanding success, Graham was delighted to be named the Best Large Outdoor Display in The Mirror newspaper’s national Best Christmas Light Display competition 2019.

Each year Graham creates the amazing display in memory of his late sister Jessica, who spent time at The Donna Louise in Trentham. Since it first began in 2013 the display has grown every year and has become hugely popular, with more than 18,000 people visiting the farm in December alone.

Graham said, “I continue to be overwhelmed by the amazing support for my festive fundraiser. I’d like to say a special thank you to all my community friends and visitors, and to each local organisation that sponsored and supported my festive fundraiser in December. In particular I’d like to say a special thank you to our principal sponsor, Swansway Motor Group, and to our event partner, Whitby Morrison.” 

The display involves hundreds of hours of hard work, and months of planning and preparation beforehand for Graham and his family. And, each night throughout December, Graham, his family, friends and volunteers, are on hand - whatever the weather - to welcome visitors to the display.

Graham added, “I’d also like to say a special mention and thank you to my Mum, Dad, friends and amazing volunteers who gave up their own time to support me throughout December. It is a huge team effort to make the display possible and I’m so grateful for their continued support. To know that the display has brought festive cheer and laughter to families across our local community makes all the hard work worthwhile.”

In addition to experiencing the thousands of colourful lights and animated decorations, visitors to the display, were able to visit Santa’s Grotto, indulge on a #festiveicecream and have their own #sleighselfie with Santa.

Simon Fuller, Chief Executive of The Donna Louise, said, “I’m totally overwhelmed by the fantastic support Graham continues to give to The Donna Louise. To have raised more than £32,540 is truly breathtaking. I know that it takes him months of planning, and weeks of hard work, to put all the decorations and lights together and I’m so grateful for his dedication. On behalf of all the children and young people, and their families, who will benefit from this money, I know that everyone at The Donna Louise would like to join me in saying a huge, heartfelt thank you to Graham.”

The £32,540 that Graham has raised will fund a care support worker for 12 months and this year’s training programme for hospice care staff.

Jayne Dono 

Relationship Assistant

The Donna Louise Hospice for children & young people

1 Grace Road, Trentham, Stoke on Trent, ST4 8FN

Tel: 01782 654444   

New Rural Crime Team Enjoys Early Success In Supporting Communities



Immigration, theft of historic artefacts, animal rights issues and offensive weapons - these are just some of the matters dealt with by Cheshire Constabulary’s newly dedicated rural crime team during its first three months.
The team was established last autumn to protect our communities from rural and wildlife crime and bring those who target these areas to justice.
While Cheshire has had trained rural and wildlife crime officers for some time, the force had never had a unit specifically dedicated to rural and wildlife crime before. The team is made up of a Sergeant, a Detective Constable, six police officers, three PCSOs and volunteers. It is also supported by members of the Special Constabulary.
And the team has been busy, with over 170 rural crimes already investigated, and 15 significant arrests made for a range of offences, including for theft of stone, farm incursions, assaults and public order.
One of the real strengths of the new unit has been its work in relation to hunting, with ongoing engagement untaken with both pro and anti-hunt supporters. This has included a policing strategy agreed by all parties, and regular face-to-face meetings with representation from all sides to exchange information and share views.
The idea behind this has been to improve understanding in this area and consideration of different viewpoints, and enable officers to better respond to reports of crime arising from this activity.
Chief Inspector Simon Meegan, the force’s rural crime lead, said: “The new unit has got off to a fantastic start and is already proving to be a really valuable addition to the Force.
“In particular, their attendance at incidents such as those involving hunting has provided the knowledge and experience that might otherwise be lacking if only regular response officers attended.
“This is particularly important as such incidents can be challenging to respond to, but we feel we’ve made considerable progress in this area thanks to our ongoing engagement work with both pro and anti-hunt groups to better understand their views and needs.
“I’ve no doubt that the team will continue to provide their expertise and support in what is a very diverse range of rural and wildlife matters, and that the communities living in those areas are reassured that they have this type of support from the police.”
The Constabulary and rural public are now benefitting from an enhanced digital offering which is helping the Force to better respond and investigate rural crime matters. These include a new digital medial upload capability, which benefits all victims and witnesses, and the introduction of the What 3 Words app, which allows officers to pinpoint the exact location of an incident.
Officers in the unit, alongside Reaseheath College, have also delivered specialist training to rural PCSOs to ensure there is greater consistency and knowledge across the Constabulary of rural and wildlife crime matters.
Chief Insp Meegan added: “We believe in engaging with and empowering communities to prevent crime and disorder. Where crime has happened and harm has been caused, whatever form it takes, we’ll take it seriously and do what we can to bring offenders to justice. Many people have already engaged with us and I’d like to say thank you to them for their ongoing support.
“If you come across anything concerning or need the police’s help, I’d urge you to get in touch with us, whether it’s calling us on 999 in an emergency or if there’s a crime in action, on 101 or through our website if it’s not, or get in touch with your local PCSO whether it’s on social media or in person at one of their regular surgeries.”

BBC and RHS Launch North West Garden Design Competition


· Call for aspiring garden designers in the Manchester, Merseyside and Lancashire areas to design a ‘City Garden’ for RHS Flower Show Tatton Park in July

· The best designs will be selected to represent three Local BBC Radio Stations at the flower show this summer

· From these three one winning garden will be chosen to be relocated to the RHS’ newest Garden RHS Garden Bridgewater in Salford

Calling all amateur gardeners and aspiring garden designers, BBC Radio Lancashire, Manchester and Merseyside are joining forces with the Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) to run an exciting garden design competition which gives three listeners the chance to design a garden at this year’s RHS Flower Show Tatton Park (22-26 July).

Launched this morning, the competition is asking amateur gardeners and aspiring garden designers to create and submit a ‘City Garden’ design, incorporating creative ways of designing to get the most out of a small outdoor space. Entrants should also look to tie in a link to their local BBC region as a winning design from each - Lancashire, Manchester and Merseyside will be chosen to represent the corresponding radio station at the flower show this summer, giving three lucky listeners an opportunity to see their designs become a reality. 

At the show the RHS will decide on the ultimate winning garden which will be relocated to the RHS’ newest garden, RHS Garden Bridgewater in Salford, Greater Manchester which opens to the public later this year.   

Gemma Lake, Show Manager for RHS Flower Show Tatton Park, said: “This is a money can’t buy opportunity for someone passionate about gardening and design to see their vision come to life at an RHS Show, gain expert advice and hands-on experience in garden design. I am very excited to see what the BBC Local Radio listeners come up with and which of the three gardens will be selected to be rebuilt permanently at RHS Garden Bridgewater when it opens later this year – what a fantastic opportunity for a budding designer!”

“As more and more of the population live in cities and urban areas we hope these ‘City Gardens’ will provide fantastic take home inspiration for everyone especially those visitors with limited outdoor space.”

The winning designers will be given the opportunity to work with a professional mentor and landscape contractor to bring their designs to life and have free entry to the show throughout show week. 

Entries must arrive by Monday 17 February.  Judges will select a winning design from each region, Lancashire, Manchester and Merseyside and will consider; how well the garden interprets the theme ‘City Gardens’; how interesting and creative the design is; the effective use of plants; how well the design has considered sustainability issues; and how realistic the design is within a small budget and space.

Information on how to enter the competition is available at www.bbc.co.uk and online at BBC Manchester, Merseyside and Lancashire.

Thursday, 16 January 2020

The Andrews Panto & Plays Society

Reporter Jonathan White

The Andrews Panto & Plays Society (TAPPS) performed the musical pantomime ‘Alice in Wonderland’ at St Andrew's Church Hall, Bedford Street, Crewe in mid-January this year.

‘Alice in Wonderland’ featured a mixture of song, dance, silliness, and audience participation.

There were also refreshments, a raffle and a lucky programme number draw during the interval. The lucky programme number winner at each performance received a star prize donated by Tesco Extra (Vernon Way, Crewe), Mrs Darlington (Lancaster Fields, Crewe), and Mornflake (Gresty Road, Crewe).

TAPPS received a good luck message from Bobby Ball, who recently performed in panto at the Crewe Lyceum. The message read: ‘Hi everyone, Sorry I can’t be with you this panto season because I am really very busy with my own this year and other things after, but I wish you every success and hope in fact I know it will be a huge success. Once again have a good one. God bless everyone. Bobby Ball’

‘Alice in Wonderland’ played to 300 people over four performances.

Money from this year’s 2020 pantomime will go to St Andrew's Church and charities, plus a small amount will be held in reserve for future TAPPS productions. TAPPS have given away over £6,000 in the years since its formation.

TAPPS Panto Director Fred Allman said: “This has been a great production and I am very proud of all those who have been involved.  It was especially good to have new young faces in our company this year. Our pantos seem to get better with each year and feedback from audiences has been very positive.  We actually had a standing ovation from our Saturday night audience and more people have asked about joining us as a result of watching the show.”

TAPPS was formed in November 2014 to stage a panto for the local community in the St Andrews Church area. Since then the society has grown and includes many people from the local community and further afield, working together with church members. Since the formation the society has staged six pantos, five variety shows and hosted several play reading evenings. Some members have been involved in dramatic presentations in St Andrews Church. The society enjoys a social life with theatre trips, country walks and other events throughout the year. TAPPS is non-profit making so any money goes to charities and the church.

For further information relating to TAPPS please phone Fred on 07949524798.

‘Holly Holy Day’ Battle of Nantwich events at St Mary’s Church, Acton

Reporter Jonathan White, Wistaston

‘Holly Holy Day’ Battle of Nantwich events at St Mary’s Church, Acton

Activities have been organised to suit all tastes at St Mary’s Church on Monks Lane in Acton near Nantwich on Saturday 25th January 2020, during the annual ‘Holly Holy Day’ Battle of Nantwich. The Church will be open from 9am until 11:30am serving hot drinks and buttered toast with the opportunity to go up the Church’s Tower. At 10am Mike Lea (local historian) will give a talk: ‘The Civil War explained’ and at 11am a Guided Walk will head off to view the battlefields. Everyone is welcome (donations are gratefully received). For enquiries please contact Steve Davies Tel. (01270) 624135. A representative from St Mary’s Church, Acton said, “This is always a popular annual event at Acton Church. We very much enjoy welcoming our visitors and helping them to have a really good time”.

The ‘Battle of Nantwich’ occurred during the first English Civil War (1642-1646) and was fought between the Parliamentarians (Roundheads) and the Royalists (Cavaliers) who were loyal to Charles I. At the end of 1643, the Royalist Army had secured much of the North West and Cheshire with the exception of Nantwich where, surrounded by Royalists, the Parliamentarian garrison held out under siege. Namptwiche, as it was then called, was Cheshire’s second major town and very important due to its strategic position on the road to Chester. A Parliamentarian force under the command of Sir Thomas Fairfax (1612-71) advanced from Lincolnshire to relieve the town. This army engaged the Royalists in the Henhull area to the west and defeated them in the Battle of Namptwiche. As Fairfax’s forces marched on Acton, Col Richard Gibson deployed four Royalist regiments of infantry to meet them. The Royalists fell back to Acton Church where Col Gibson surrendered to Fairfax. Many of the Officers took refuge in Acton Church and were also taken prisoner after surrendering. The battle took place on 25th January 1644 and it was a Parliamentarian victory. To celebrate the Parliamentarian victory people wore sprigs of holly in their hair and hats.

Today, the Battle of Nantwich is commemorated annually on the nearest Saturday to the original battle date and it is known as ‘Holly Holy Day’. During ‘Holly Holy Day’ hundreds of re-enactors will also descend on Nantwich to commemorate the 1644 Civil War battle. There will also be various displays and parades culminating in a large battle on Mill Island in Nantwich.

Tatton Park’s Winter Wonder Offers



Visit Tatton Park midweek for half price

Book online and pay just half price vehicle entry to Tatton Park and go on to enjoy free garden admission for midweek visits from 7th Jan to 7th Feb. The adventure playground is also here for little ones to run-off steam and parkland walks, whatever the weather, help to keep those promises of being more active in 2020.

10 Winter Wonders in the Gardens

Tatton Park shares 10 reasons for visiting the Gardens this month:

v It’s free!

v Join the hunt for snowdrops. Tatton’s first (photographed) was spotted behind the Tower near the Rose Garden

v Find warmth, relaxation and tropical greenery in the heated glasshouses

v Admire longer views across the 50-acre gardens, thanks to the tree skeletons

v Discover rare species of conifer in the Arboretum

v Enjoy the peace of the Japanese Garden

v Have fun in the maze

v Enjoy a well-earnt sit down in the African Hut

v Soak up views of the parkland from the Italian Terrace

v Take a winter walk out to the Choragic Monument, at the perimeter of the Gardens

“The Winter gardens is the perfect place to re-energise and refresh, take a walk through the Fernery and Conservatory stopping to smell the orange blossom and breathe in the early smell of pine pollen blowing through the pinetum in late winter”
Simon Tetlow, Tatton Park’s Head Gardener

Book your £3.50 entry online today

The Winter Wonder Offer is available online only for Tuesday to Friday visits, from 7th Jan to 7th Feb 2020. Book your £3.50 vehicle entry (£1.75 for blue badge holders) today at www.tattonpark.org.uk/winterwonder

Visit the Winter Gardens for free

Enjoy free garden admission, midweek only Tuesday to Friday, from 7th Jan to 7th Feb 2020. No voucher necessary.

Please note Tatton Park is closed on Mondays during the winter season. More information at www.tattonpark.org.uk or call 01625 374416

Warning Due To A Rise In Courier Fraud Crimes



We're issuing an urgent warning to residents after three elderly victims were conned out of more than £60,000 by fraudsters posing as police officers and bank workers.
Courier frauds are mainly committed by organised crime groups (OCGs). A member of the OCG, known as the ‘victim communicator’ makes phone calls to vulnerable potential victims, usually the more elderly members of the community, telling them they are a police officer or work at the bank.
They persuade the victim to cooperate with an ‘operation’ designed to gather evidence or identify offenders responsible for a fictional offence. The victims are asked to withdraw money from their bank, purchase an expensive item and/or provide their bank details or card to assist with the operation.
The money, item or documents are handed over to another member of the gang, the ‘courier’, who attends the victim’s address or meets them nearby, on the promise that the money or item will be returned or compensation provided.
In the last 28 days alone, three Cheshire victims have been conned out of more than £60,000 in cash and goods. Two victims in Crewe both handed over more than £10,000 each after withdrawing cash and giving it to fraudsters in the mistaken belief they were assisting police officers. One victim in Alderley Edge has lost £20,000 cash and over £20,000 in goods while there was a narrow escape for a Congleton victim who tried make a withdrawal from the bank but, thankfully, the Banking Protocol* was followed which prevented them from losing their money.
In the other five cases the potential victims realised there was a potential scam in progress and informed the police.
Detective Sergeant Chris Jacques from Cheshire Constabulary’s Economic Crime Unit said: “Nationally, courier fraud is a growing problem with over 1000 offences committed in the last six months. A national awareness campaign is being launched this week to target offenders, which we will be supporting.
“I would strongly urge anyone receiving calls asking for money to be withdrawn and handed over to a courier to immediately phone the police on 101 or report the incident to Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040. Police, banks or other such services don’t cold call so, if you do receive a phone call purporting to be from one of these organisations, don’t be taken in by what they say. They are not genuine.”
Officers have issued general advice on how to spot and avoid courier fraud:

  • Police officers, banks or other such organisations will never ask you for cash or your bank details.
  • If you do receive a potential courier fraud call us on 101 or report it to Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040.
  • If someone is trying to rush you into doing something regarding your bank account it is likely they are involved in a scam.
  • Do you bank with one particular bank but the person on the phone is talking about a different one - even if they do have the right bank, it doesn’t mean it is legitimate.
*The Banking Protocol trains bank staff to spot when someone is about to fall victim to a scam and will try to prevent them from withdrawing cash to give to a fraudster, after which they can request an immediate police response to the branch.  52 payment service providers, including all the main high street banks and the Post Office, are now fully signed up to the Banking Protocol and have trained up their front-line branch staff in the steps that need to be taken when a customer is at risk. Since March 2018, the scheme has been implemented by all 45 police forces across the UK.

Major sponsorship announced for Pride in the Park!


Cheshire East Council is delighted to announce a main sponsorship package for flagship LGBT+ event Pride in the Park 2020.

This is the second year Crewe Town Council has pledged to help celebrate, support and campaign for the LGBT+ community in Cheshire East.

The third annual LGBT+ event will take place at Queens Park, in Crewe, on Saturday 20 June 2020.

Pride in the Park welcomes people from Cheshire East and beyond, offering a whole host of family-friendly entertainment and activities, a vibrant parade and a dedicated marketplace of LGBT+ organisations to help offer advice and information for visitors.

This colourful, fun-filled, celebratory event will feature a health and wellbeing marketplace for visitors to receive key help and support from organisations such as Body Positive, Transforum Manchester and Diversity Role Models. Cheshire East partner agencies, including Cheshire police and Cheshire Fire and Rescue Service, will also attend.

Councillor Jill Rhodes, Cheshire East Council cabinet member with responsibility for equality and diversity, said: “We are delighted Crewe Town Council has made the decision to again get involved with Pride in the Park 2020. Putting on such a major event for the LGBT+ community, which last year attracted 5,000 visitors, would not be possible without the generous and enthusiastic support of Crewe Town Council and other sponsors, partners and community organisations.

“Pride in the Park continues to grow and already there is a real sense of excitement among all those involved for the event next year. Everyone is really looking forward to the big day.”

Councillor Tom Dunlop, chair of Crewe Town Council's community plan committee, said: “Crewe Town Council is incredibly proud to once again be a part of Pride in the Park coming in to 2020, as we celebrate both the equality and diversity of our local communities, by continuing our support for the LGBT+ community - not only in Crewe but around the country.

“I attended the event in 2019, and had the pleasure of meeting many wonderful people who had travelled from far and wide to attend the event, which was held in our beautiful Queens Park - and I am so pleased that the event will be returning to the park this year.

“The atmosphere was fantastic, the parade was awash with vibrancy and colour, the performers all did an outstanding job, the crowd were happy – and the weather was mostly good too!”

Other sponsors who have signed up to support Pride in the Park include Mid Cheshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, HSL Compliance and Cheshire East Council's arms-length company Ansa Environmental Services.

To find out more about this event, visit: www.prideinthepark.com or for details of sponsorship opportunities, contact Kathryn Bradley at kathryn.bradley@cheshireeast.gov.uk

PCSO Recruitment

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Cheshire Constabulary

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PCSO Recruitment


Good morning,
We opened up recruitment for PCSOs on Friday 3rd January, with vacancies in the areas of Crewe, Macclesfield, Warrington, Chester and Runcorn.
Information about the role of a PCSO and the recruitment process can be found below:-
Macclesfield – socsi.in/f70Xz
Chester – socsi.in/BwYfy
Crewe – https://cheshirepolice.taleo.net/careersection/mfss-external+cheshire+constabulary/jobdetail.ftl?job=20000005&lang=en&sns_id=link&utm_source=Facebook&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=SocialSignIn&utm_content=Event+and+Meeting+promotion#.Xg8iLZ2HTCA.link
Warrington – socsi.in/PgLIa
Runcorn – socsi.in/2W31y

Love is in the air at Tatton Park



Christmas is a magical time of year when many couples are swept up in the romance of the festive season. The Fairytale Christmas Mansion at Tatton Park this year immersed visitors in a beautiful world of fairytale themed rooms, elaborate Christmas decorations and festive floral displays. Thousands of visitors marvelled at the magical celebration of the ten much-loved fairytales and for our visitors Julie and Keith, it was an occasion they will remember forever.

Fairytale ending at Tatton Park’s Christmas Mansion

The eighteen-foot tree in the cupola of the Mansion, adorned with silver and gold ornaments and twinkling lights was the perfect setting for a special Christmas proposal. Julie and Keith visited the Fairytale Christmas Mansion on the 20th of December 2019 on the 9th anniversary of their “first date.”

Keith says, I had been looking for somewhere Christmassy, beautiful and memorable to propose to Julie…We have been to events at Tatton Park before and we love the area and knew that the Mansion would be something special at Christmas. I knew that Julie would particularly like it…We went round all the rooms and thought the room with the huge, amazing Christmas tree was particularly impressive and very beautiful. She was not aware of my plan - At an appropriate time, I suggested we take a couple of pictures in front of the tree and at that point I got down on one knee and proposed! Thankfully she said yes!!” Julie and Keith’s own fairytale has just begun and we are sure they will live happily ever after.

Love is in the air at Tatton Park

Tatton Park congratulates all the newly engaged couples from the Christmas period and is gearing up for a busy wedding season ahead. Set in 1,000 acres of beautiful Cheshire parkland with wild deer, beautiful meres, ornamental gardens, and the Neo-classical Mansion from the 18th century, Tatton has an enviable reputation for providing one of the most sought-after locations for weddings throughout the year.

Bride: the Wedding Show

If you or a loved one has become engaged over Christmas, we have a wedding planning event coming up next month to inspire you. Bride: The Wedding Show is the most glamorous of all our many events and is presented in association with Cheshire Life with fabulous exhibitors that will have everything you need for your special day. Enjoy choreographed fashion shows, live music, and glitzy champagne bars to help make the planning even more fun.

Meet Tatton Park’s experienced team at stall 100 at the show and come and view our beautifully dressed Tenants Hall and wedding facilities. Staff will be on hand to have a chat and you will get the chance to speak to some of our selected suppliers and bar company who can help you plan your special day.

Times and Prices:

v Bride: The Wedding Show and Tatton Park Open Days are on Saturday 1st and Sunday 2nd of February 2020 from 10am – 5pm.

v Tickets are £10 for regular admission to the Bride: The Wedding Show or £15 for a VIP ticket, which includes a glass of champagne and a guaranteed seat for the 11:15am catwalk show. Take advantage of our special offer and get half price tickets when you use the promo code TATTONPARK to purchase your tickets in advance at www.bridetheweddingshow.co.uk. Booking fee applies.

A £7 Vehicle Park Entry charge applies for visitors who arrive by car, minibus or motorbike. Walkers, cyclists and pre-booked coaches can enter the Park free of charge.

Saturday, 11 January 2020

‘Holly Holy Day’ Battle of Nantwich events at St Mary’s Church, Acton

Reporter  Jonathan White, Wistaston


Activities have been organised to suit all tastes at St Mary’s Church on Monks Lane in Acton near Nantwich on Saturday 25th January 2020, during the annual ‘Holly Holy Day’ Battle of Nantwich. The Church will be open from 9am until 11:30am serving hot drinks and buttered toast with the opportunity to go up the Church’s Tower. At 10am Mike Lea (local historian) will give a talk: ‘The Civil War explained’ and at 11am a Guided Walk will head off to view the battlefields. Everyone is welcome (donations are gratefully received). For enquiries please contact Steve Davies Tel. (01270) 624135. A representative from St Mary’s Church, Acton said, “This is always a popular annual event at Acton Church. We very much enjoy welcoming our visitors and helping them to have a really good time”.

The ‘Battle of Nantwich’ occurred during the first English Civil War (1642-1646) and was fought between the Parliamentarians (Roundheads) and the Royalists (Cavaliers) who were loyal to Charles I. At the end of 1643, the Royalist Army had secured much of the North West and Cheshire with the exception of Nantwich where, surrounded by Royalists, the Parliamentarian garrison held out under siege. Namptwiche, as it was then called, was Cheshire’s second major town and very important due to its strategic position on the road to Chester. A Parliamentarian force under the command of Sir Thomas Fairfax (1612-71) advanced from Lincolnshire to relieve the town. This army engaged the Royalists in the Henhull area to the west and defeated them in the Battle of Namptwiche. As Fairfax’s forces marched on Acton, Col Richard Gibson deployed four Royalist regiments of infantry to meet them. The Royalists fell back to Acton Church where Col Gibson surrendered to Fairfax. Many of the Officers took refuge in Acton Church and were also taken prisoner after surrendering. The battle took place on 25th January 1644 and it was a Parliamentarian victory. To celebrate the Parliamentarian victory people wore sprigs of holly in their hair and hats.

Today, the Battle of Nantwich is commemorated annually on the nearest Saturday to the original battle date and it is known as ‘Holly Holy Day’. During ‘Holly Holy Day’ hundreds of re-enactors will also descend on Nantwich to commemorate the 1644 Civil War battle. There will also be various displays and parades culminating in a large battle on Mill Island in Nantwich.

Winter Wellbeing – accessing the right health services for your needs


Cheshire East Council and its partners are offering a range of advice and support to residents on how to keep warm, well and safe this winter.

This week, we urge residents to make sure they access the right health services for their needs.

During the winter months, health services can become overwhelmed through greatly increased demand. 

To help limit the impact it’s important that you are aware of which service is right for you at a given time.

Firstly, if you start to feel unwell, even if it is just a cough or cold, don’t wait until it gets more serious – get help from your pharmacist. Your pharmacist can give you advice for many common minor illnesses, such as diarrhoea, minor infections, headache or sore throats, so the pharmacy should be your first port of call.

Aside of your local pharmacy, here’s our advice on which services to access in a particular situation:

● Call NHS 111 if you urgently need medical help or advice but it’s not a life-threatening situation. You can also call NHS 111 if you're not sure which NHS service you need;

● Call 999 if someone is seriously ill or injured and their life is at risk and;

● Make an appointment with your GP if you are feeling unwell and it is not an emergency.

Make sure you speak to your pharmacist about medicines you should have in stock to help get you and your family through the winter season. Also check to see if older neighbours, relatives and friends have the medication they need.

Remember, if you do need help when your GP surgery is closed and it’s not serious or life threatening, call NHS 111 or visit: www.nhs.uk, where you can be directed to a local service that is open.

Councillor Jill Rhodes, cabinet member for public health at Cheshire East Council, said: “Residents have a range of services they can access if they feel unwell or need advice during winter. But it’s important that the services they do access are appropriate to their needs.

“You can do your part in helping to take the strain off health services by ensuring you have pharmacy purchased medicines at home to treat common illnesses, keep an eye on vulnerable members of the community and ensure you get help and advice as soon as you start to feel unwell.”

For further winter wellbeing advice, visit: www.cheshireeast.gov.uk/livewell and scroll down to the winter wellbeing section. Advice can also be found on the council’s Facebook page at: www.facebook.com/cheshireeastcouncil and on Twitter at: @CheshireEast

Residents can help friends and neighbours, who do not have internet access, by downloading and printing off information from the website and giving it to them.

Cheshire East Council announces cabinet member for Children and Families


Councillor Kathryn Flavell has been announced as Cheshire East Council’s cabinet member for children and families.

Councillor Flavell is ward member for Sandbach, Elworth and has served as deputy cabinet member for children and families and as a member of the corporate parenting committee.

Councillor Sam Corcoran, leader of Cheshire East Council, said: “I am very grateful to Councillor Flavell for stepping forward into this important role.  Kathryn worked closely with the previous cabinet member, the late and much missed Councillor Dorothy Flude, and I know that she is passionate about the welfare and wellbeing of our children and families.”

Councillor Flavell said: “The council plays a crucial role in supporting and helping to shape the lives of children in Cheshire East. Our ambition is for every child and young person to have the best start in life, to be safe, happy, healthy  and to reach their full potential. To this end, the council works in close partnership with schools, health agencies, adopters, foster carers, community groups, police and other partners as well as with children and families directly.

“I would like to take this opportunity to pay tribute to the late Dorothy Flude and her absolute commitment to improving the lives of all our children. I am both honoured and humbled to be stepping into the shoes of such a hardworking and well-respected councillor. I am looking forward to the challenges ahead and will do my very best to help deliver our ambition.

“I would especially like to thank the leader, my cabinet colleagues and officers for supporting me in this new role.”

Have Your Say on the Policing Precept For Cheshire

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Cheshire Constabulary

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Have Your Say on the Policing Precept For Cheshire


Cheshire’s police and crime commissioner is asking residents and businesses for their views on how much council tax they pay towards local policing.
PCC David Keane has today (Tuesday 7 January) launched an online consultation to ask local people if they would be willing to support up to a maximum of £2 per month increase in the policing precept for the average band D household.
You can complete the online survey here: Have your say on police funding
There will also be a number of roadshows held across Cheshire where residents can talk to the commissioner directly about their views on the precept and complete the survey face-to-face.
He said: “Over the last decade police funding has been subject to stringent funding cuts from central Government. This has seen the policing budget in Cheshire decrease in real-terms year-on-year since 2010. In a decade where demand on policing has increased by one third, and become increasingly complex, the government’s programme of austerity has meant that Cheshire has suffered a big decrease in police officers, support staff posts and other essential resources as we’ve struggled with more than £60 million of real term cuts.
“Whilst imposing cuts nationally, central government has dictated the shift of the funding burden onto local residents, requiring commissioners to consult on raising the policing element of council tax. Whilst I believe that policing should be funded from government as the first responsibility of the state is keeping its people safe, I promised to protect our public and our public services and to carefully listen to the views of local residents.
“Historically, this annual consultation is set around the government’s Provisional Police Funding Settlement which local police services usually receive in December. Due to the late general election in 2019, police services are yet to receive their Provisional Funding Settlement for 2020/21 so we have to work on an assumption of the continuance of a flat-cash settlement from Government with no additional funding to support additional demand or to cover pay and price inflation. The chief constable has advised me to consult with Cheshire residents on a precept that enables him to deliver a police service which keeps our communities safe.
“At £200.44, the police element of band D council tax in Cheshire is currently the ninth lowest in the country. And thanks to the support of local residents in last year’s policing precept, we have delivered on our promise of locally recruiting 43 officers in the last nine months.
“We are also expecting to see some of the police officer posts, of the circa 21,000 that have been lost over the last decade, start to be replaced by the government funded national uplift programme. Cheshire are expecting to see 30 of these officers this year which will start to help us reverse the effects of austerity on policing but while these officers may be funded, there appears no protection for the current budget and for current officer numbers in Cheshire to be maintained.
“Therefore, the chief constable and I are asking residents and businesses in Cheshire if they are willing to support up to an extra £2 per month increase for the average band D household. This will enable the chief constable to invest in a number of areas which are operational threats for Cheshire Police including county lines, major crime and modern slavery and human trafficking.”
The public consultation events will be taking place at the following locations on the following dates:

  • Chester - Tesco, Frodsham Square, Thursday 9 January, 1pm-3pm
  • Runcorn - Runcorn Shopping City, Friday 10 January, 10am-12noon
  • Widnes - Morrisons, Green Oaks Way, Friday 10 January, 1pm-3pm
  • Warrington - Cockhedge Shopping Centre, Thursday 16 January, 1pm-3pm
  • Macclesfield - Sainsbury’s, Cumberland Street, Friday 17 January, 10am-12noon
  • Middlewich - Morrisons, Newton Bank, Friday 17 January, 2pm-4pm
  • Crewe - Tesco, Vernon Way, Thursday 23 January, 1pm-3pm
  • Ellesmere Port - The Market, Friday 24 January, 10am-12noon
  • Northwich - Asda, Leicester Street, Friday 24 January, 2pm-4pm
The consultation closes at midnight on Sunday 26 January 2020.

Tuesday, 7 January 2020

The 7th annual ‘Civil War author event’

The 7th annual ‘Civil War author event’, organised by the Nantwich Book Shop & Coffee Lounge, will take place in Nantwich on Friday 24th January 2020 on the evening before the annual Holly Holy Day ‘Battle of Nantwich’ re-enactment in the town. The event will feature Civil War authors Norah Carlin, Margaret Evans and Mark Turnbull. Tickets = £7.50 per person, which includes snacks and a £2.50 discount upon book purchase. Cash Bar. Doors open at 6:30pm for a 7pm start. Venue to be decided.

Holly Holy Day traces back to the 17th century and the four-year-long First English Civil War between the Parliamentarians (Roundheads) and the Royalists (Cavaliers) loyal to Charles I. This year is the 376th anniversary of the original battle, which took place on 25th January 1644.

Denise Lawson, Nantwich Book Shop & Coffee Lounge, said: “We are looking forward to the seventh annual Civil War Author event with some exciting new authors lined up."

Other author events in the near future at the Nantwich Bookshop & Coffee Lounge:

-Tuesday 21st January - Adam Hamdy returns to launch his latest thriller ‘Black 13’ featuring ex-MI6 operative Scott Pearce. Adam always speaks eloquently and sells out his event so early booking is essential. Tickets are £7.50 per person, which includes snacks and a £2.50 discount upon book purchase. Cash Bar. Doors open at 6:30pm for a 7pm start.

-Tuesday 28th January - David Maidment talks about his latest work, in collaboration with Paul Carpenter, ‘Cambrian Railway Gallery’. The book is full of magnificent comprehensive early photographs of Cambrian engines and Oswestry Works. Quentin McGuiness who was Project Head on the Grange Locomotive restoration will be in attendance as well on the evening. Tickets are £7.50 per person, which includes snacks and a £2.50 discount upon book purchase. Cash Bar. Doors open at 6:30pm for a 7pm start.

For further information please visit Nantwich Bookshop & Coffee Lounge at 46 High Street in the centre of Nantwich, or contact via phone: 01270 611665, email: info@nantwichbookshop.co.uk , or Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/NantwichBookshopCoffeeshop/

The new food waste recycling service in Cheshire East is now live


Residents in Cheshire East can now recycle their food waste as the new service is live.

A six-eight week roll out of the distribution of food caddies is now taking place to those residents with a garden waste bin. The small green caddies are to be used in the kitchen to collect food waste, which is then transferred to the garden waste bin for recycling.

Residents can start recycling food waste with their caddy as soon as they receive it, or can choose to start recycling before they receive their caddies, by putting food waste directly into their garden waste bin.

An initial supply of biodegradable liners will be provided with the food caddy. However, use of these is optional. Once the caddy is full, the food waste goes directly into the garden waste bin along with garden waste, with or without a liner.

Food waste will be collected in the garden waste bin as the council is not able to collect from caddies – these are purely for kitchen use, to transfer food to the garden bin.

The council is delivering the caddies on a six-phase distribution. Phase one starts in Crewe and Middlewich, before teams move further south then up to the north. Residents can check where on the phased distribution they will be by visiting the council webpage at: www.cheshireeast.gov.uk/foodwaste

Residents are advised to wait until the distribution in their area has fully completed before they chase delivery of their caddy. The web page will be kept up to date on the progress of the phased delivery. If a resident finds that they don’t have their caddy after the status of their phase is shown as complete, the page will show information on how to report a missed delivery.

Councillor Brian Roberts, Cheshire East Council cabinet member for highways and waste, said: “I am really excited that this service is now live for Cheshire East residents. The council has acted on their historic concerns about recycling and food waste and has made an investment into this food recycling service. It will reduce the amount of food going to waste and make a difference to our environment

“All residents with a garden waste bin will receive their food caddy by the end of February, weather permitting. A leaflet will be included within their caddy which explains what can and can’t go into it.

“It’s astonishing that on average families in Cheshire East waste £70 a month on food that they buy too much of, cook too much, don’t store properly or don’t use before the use-by date. The leaflet contains tips on how to reduce this to help save money. Any food that does need to go to waste can then go into the food caddy.  

“Collected mixed-food and garden waste will be taken to a processing plant in Crewe, where it will be recycled into compost, which is used in horticulture and agriculture.

“We want to thank residents for all they are doing to reduce waste and reuse or recycle where possible.”

Food waste placed in garden waste bins will be collected every two weeks. Residents should refer to the new collection calendars that were sent to all households, for details of their collection schedule. Copies of these calendars can also be downloaded at: www.cheshireeast.gov.uk/bins

Full details of the new service were shown in the resident’s magazine – The Voice. This magazine arrived at households in November and within this is an eight-page, pull-out-and-keep food waste booklet.

A copy of this magazine is available on the council’s website at:   www.cheshireeast.gov.uk/thevoice

A new ‘Waste Watchers’ app can be downloaded from the Apple or Google Play stores, which gives advice, collection day information and news about food waste and all waste collection services. Users can also sign up for alerts, such as notifications about missed collection due to bad weather.

Information and reminders about the new service and the phased distribution will feature on Cheshire East Council’s social media pages. Please follow @CheshireEastCouncil on Facebook and @CheshireEast on Twitter to keep up-to-date.

Don’t miss out on sharing your views on governance of town and parish councils


Don’t miss out on sharing your views on the governance arrangements for all Cheshire East’s town and parish councils.

That’s the message from Cheshire East Council. The council launched a survey of residents and other stakeholders on 28 October, which will inform a review being undertaken across the borough by the local authority.

The council is responsible for the governance and electoral arrangements for the 186 town and parish council wards in 142 town and parish councils, which cover the whole borough. This community governance review (CGR) will include:

● Town and parish boundaries;

● Numbers of town and parish councillors;

● Grouping of parishes; and

● Warding.

As part of this process, the council wants people’s initial views on how they feel current governance arrangements for town and parishes are faring and whether there is a need for change – and why?

People are being urged to take part in a pre-consultation survey on the council’s website. It seeks to gather information, which will support the development of community governance proposals for formal consultation in 2020.

The overarching purpose of this review, which is in accordance with the Department of Communities and Local Government and Local Government Boundary Commission for England guidance, is to ensure that community governance arrangements ‘continue to reflect local identities and facilitate effective and convenient local government’.

Councillor Joy Bratherton, chairman of Cheshire East Council’s community governance review sub-committee, said: “As part of the review, we need to hear people’s views on how effective current town and parish arrangements are at meeting local needs and would like to hear any suggestions as to how this could be improved.

“The present arrangements predate the creation of Cheshire East, under local government reorganisation, and we are mindful that there’s since been considerable change to the population, its distribution and to the borough’s settlements.”

The survey will feed into the overarching review, which offers the opportunity to ensure that the tier of parish governance is fit for purpose for the future.

Cllr Bratherton added: “There certainly won’t be change for change’s sake and so I would urge people to take part in this pre-consultation survey and share their views via the council website at: https://surveys.cheshireeast.gov.uk/s/CGRPartOne/

Paper copies of the survey can also be obtained from local libraries or Cheshire East Council’s customer service offices at Macclesfield Town Hall, The Municipal Buildings in Crewe and Westfields in Sandbach. The survey runs until 31 January 2020.

Government guidance advises that it is good practice to hold a review of town and parish governance every 10-15 years. The last was done before Cheshire East Council was created in 2009.

Nothing is changing yet, as the review is a complex task and any changes proposed under the CGR would follow extensive public consultation – including with town and parish councils and other stakeholders.

The aim is to complete the process well before the scheduled local elections in May 2023.

The Cheshire East community governance review does not include the electoral arrangements for borough council or parliamentary seats. These would be the responsibility of Whitehall (the Local Government Boundary Commission and the Boundary Commission for England, respectively) and are not currently proposed.

For more information about CGR visit the council webpage at:

https://www.cheshireeast.gov.uk/council_and_democracy/community-governance/community-governance-reviews.aspx

Council’s latest land supply figure gives further boost to home seekers


Cheshire East Council can now demonstrate a housing land supply figure of 7.5 years – giving a further boost to home buyers. 

The rise, from a figure of 7.2 years in the same period in the previous year, means greater opportunity for people wanting to get on the housing ladder, access affordable housing or move into a new home. It also puts the council in a strong position to prevent unplanned, uncoordinated schemes in the wrong place.

The increased figure of 7.5 years supply of housing land places the council comfortably above the five-year threshold, which all councils are expected to demonstrate when contesting planning applications that run contrary to local planning guidelines.

Under national planning policy, planning inspectors can approve controversial applications where a local planning authority cannot show that it has a five-year housing land supply – an issue which has led to a number of unpopular housing schemes in the open countryside on the edge of towns and villages in previous years in Cheshire East.

Not only is there a strong supply of housing looking ahead but the council can also point to a record level of housebuilding in 2018/19, when a total of 3,062 new homes were constructed in the borough.

Councillor Toni Fox, Cheshire East Council cabinet member for planning, said: “Having 7.5 years of housing land supply places the council in a strong and resilient position in relation to planning applications in Cheshire East – and reduces, still further, the risk of a planning free-for all.

“This latest assessment means we can properly meet the demand for new homes, including affordable housing, that people need. It also helps ensure a sustainable workforce for our thriving economy in Cheshire East and a sufficient margin to ensure we have greater control over our planning decisions in future.

“I’m encouraged that many house builders are working positively with us and getting new homes built in a prompt and planned manner. We can now focus on ensuring that the remaining sites in our local plan are implemented as soon as possible and that the planning conditions are fully adhered to, in the interests of all our communities.”

As of 31 March 2019, the council had a requirement to show that 11,802 new dwellings could be built in the next  five years. It is now able to show that 17,733 new homes can be built – the equivalent of a 7.5 year’s supply.

Cheshire East remains one of the busiest planning authorities in the country.