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Thursday, 27 August 2020
‘Gorgeous’ Tatton Park Garden named best in the UK
New online research has rated every National Trust garden in the UK, and Tatton Park is number one. “It’s wonderful that the photos and reviews shared by our visitors have secured this top spot for us. We’ve always known how beloved our Garden is but for it to be rated in this way is great”, says Simon Tetlow, Head Gardener at Tatton Park.
Visitors find take-home inspiration at Tatton Park Gardens
The report, carried out by Rated People after rating all UK National Trust gardens against an index of visitor reviews on Google and photos on Instagram, also highlights Brits spending more time in their own gardens due to lockdown and staycations. Not only is Tatton Park Garden a welcome change of scenery post lockdown, it provides acres of inspiration for budding gardeners looking for achievable, take-home ideas. People find the Japanese Garden especially inspiring and the Walled Kitchen Garden evokes lots of interest for visitors keen on growing their own fruit and veg.
“Gardening for the public is what motivates us”
Simon and his team of Gardeners and Volunteers dedicate their horticultural skills and passion to looking after 50 acres of some of the most varied garden in the country. Specialised areas at Tatton Park range from Orchard, Arboretum, Italian and Rose, to Japanese, Fernery and Pinery, to name but a few. “It does feel extra special in the Gardens this summer” says Simon. “I don’t know if it’s a new appreciation of open spaces since lockdown, or people getting their social life back after self-isolating. Whatever the reason, it’s been a joy to welcome our staff, volunteers and visitors back to the Gardens, and to meet and work with people from all walks of life.”
“I never lose sight of the fact that hundreds of years ago, this magnificent garden was created for the pleasure of just one family” reflects Simon. “My team’s job is to maintain its beauty make it accessible for everyone to enjoy. It’s wonderful that today the Garden is shared by thousands of visitors, and they’re inspired to share photos and reviews online.”
How the online review placed Tatton Park at the top
Rated People researched all National Trust gardens in the UK and ranked them against an index of online reviews on Google and picturesque images on Instagram. Tatton Park came out on top, with Corfe Castle, Dorset in second place and Stourhead Landscape Garden, Wiltshire at number three. Locally, Lyme Park in Cheshire was rated sixth.
‘Spectacular Views’ photography competition
Tatton Park is hosting a photography contest on their Instagram channel, with a chance to win a Head Gardener's Cottage Picnic for 2 which can be enjoyed at one of the picnic spots in the Park. View details of how to enter plus terms and conditions at tattonpark.org.uk. Experience their ‘Gorgeous’ Gardens for yourself, and post on Instagram your ‘spectacular view’ with the tags #tattonpark and #yourhappyplacetp
The government has recently announced emergency assistance of £63 million to be distributed to local authorities in England.
Cheshire East Council has been allocated with £326,292.53 to use to support groups who are helping people who are struggling to afford food and other essentials due to Covid-19.
This additional funding will be used to build on the success of our community response and recovery fund. It is primarily aimed at supporting organisations to assist residents who are struggling to afford food and other essentials due to the economic impact caused by Covid-19 and is now open to those groups and organisations that want to help communities through the crisis.
Local charities and community organisations already can apply for grants towards the cost of getting food and other essentials to those who need it the most and by delivering essential Covid-19 related services.
Councillor Mick Warren, Cheshire East Council’s cabinet member for communities, said: “Our share of this government funding will help to ensure our most vulnerable residents continue to get access to food and other essentials at this challenging time.
“Our priority will be allocating grants where the need is greatest and other eligible projects that fall into categories such as food banks, soup kitchens, meal and shopping delivery, food distribution and lunch/breakfast clubs”.
Local charities and voluntary groups, including faith-based organisations taking an active role in responding to urgent needs of Cheshire East residents who have suffered from the economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic, can apply for these new funds.
For more details about this latest fund visit our community funds and grants website page https://www.cheshireeast.gov.uk/communitygrant
Commissioner Seeks Victim Feedback
Have you been a victim of crime in Cheshire in the last three years?
If so, Cheshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner wants your views on the support you received from Cheshire police and other support services.
It is part of a full victim needs assessment PCC David Keane is carrying out in order to improve victim support services across Cheshire.
The Commissioner is responsible for commissioning local support services for victims of crime and funds a range of services which support victims, including Cheshire CARES.
He wants to know which services helped you to recover from the crime and whether you feel adequate support was provided. He also wants to learn what services you think should be available in the future.
If you’ve been a victim of crime in Cheshire between now and 2017, you can have your say by visiting: https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/cheshirevictimsvoicesurvey
Cheshire East Council is asking parents and carers to help keep school gates clear of traffic when pupils return to class in September.
Around 56,000 children and young people attend more than 170 schools and colleges across the borough. Of these, around 3,500 students are eligible to receive free dedicated home-to-school transport, funded by the council, leaving around 52,500 making their own arrangements for the journeys to and from school every day.
The council recognises that some parents and carers will choose to take their children to school by car and is asking them to help by planning their journeys in advance. Several active travel initiatives are being promoted to help with this, with information and support provided to schools to help them encourage walking, cycling or scooting. Schemes such as ‘park and stride’ can also help relieve congestion where parents park or drop off in a safe, considerate place away from school gates and walk the remainder of the journey.
To safely manage transport for the return to school – especially after such a long period away for many pupils – the council has also put in place additional buses that will be restricted to picking up pupils only. Information on transport arrangements in place from 1 September can be found online at www.cheshireeast.gov.uk/schooltransport
For those travelling on school buses, the council is implementing a number of measures, in line with government guidance, to minimise the risk of coronavirus, including:
● Promoting the use of hand sanitiser upon boarding and/or disembarking;
● Additional cleaning of vehicles;
● Organised queuing and boarding, where possible;
● Distancing within vehicles, wherever possible; and
● The use of face coverings for children (except those who are exempt), where appropriate, for example, if they are likely to come into very close contact with people outside of their group or who they do not normally meet.
Parents are also advised that there is a delay in issuing school bus passes, and the council has arranged a two-week grace period where young people can travel without showing their pass until it arrives.
Any young people using trains to get to school or college need to be aware that it is essential to wear a face covering (unless exempt), maintain social distancing and be mindful of people around them.
Councillor Kathryn Flavell, Cheshire East Council cabinet member for children and families, said: “After most of us entered lockdown back in March, with many children continuing their education at home, I understand that the return to school may feel daunting for some parents.
“I’d like to reassure them that teams across the council are working tirelessly with schools and transport providers to implement safety measures in readiness for the new term.
“We’d like to ask parents and carers who have to drive, to help us to ensure children and young people get to and from school safely and relieve congestion by planning their journeys and parking in a safe and considerate location.”
Councillor Laura Crane, Cheshire East Council cabinet member for highways and waste, said: “Walking, cycling or scooting to school are some of the simplest ways to reduce congestion and pollution around school gates. As we emerge from the Covid-19 restrictions, the benefits of active travel on improved mental and physical wellbeing are more important than ever.
“We recognise that for some people, walking to school isn’t possible, and I urge everyone who does the school run by car to keep the routes around the school gates clear by parking a safe distance away and walking the last 10 minutes where possible.”
Parents are also advised to check their school's website and social media channels regularly for the latest information from their school and details about drop off and pick up arrangements.
Cheshire East Council has recognised and praised the teams behind the opening of two new special schools in Crewe for children aged between four and 18, as the autumn term commences following months of Covid restrictions.
The two schools, Axis Academy and Lavender Field School offer places for children and young people with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND), in particular those with social, emotional and mental health needs.
The need for more special schools was established as part of a structured programme to increase places for children and young people with SEND. The detailed plan, agreed in 2017, recognised that many pupils with SEND had very long journeys to and from school, with one in five travelling more than 45 minutes each way and many educated outside of the borough.
The last three years has seen considerable capital investment in Cheshire East schools to increase both the number of places for children and young people with SEND, but also to improve support and resources in mainstream schools.
The Axis Academy, run by the Youth Engagement Schools Trust, will open on Tuesday 1 September, initially to 32 students, increasing to 48 by 2022. The academy will focus on providing education to young people with mental health needs supporting all areas from personal wellbeing to academic success.
Lavender Field School will accommodate up to 50 pupils from September 2020, with a potential expansion to 75, from September 2021. The school offers a personalised education, rooted in social, emotional and physical development.
Councillor Kathryn Flavell, Cheshire East Council cabinet member for children and families said: “Like most councils, we have a growing need for school places for children and young people with special educational needs.
“I’d like to thank and praise all the teams working on the construction of both schools including our school projects team, the Youth Engagement Youth Trust and Lavender Fields. I know they have worked tirelessly to keep the projects on schedule, so they can open their doors and welcome students to the new term during these difficult times.
“I would also like to thank the Cheshire East Parent Carer Forum for their help and support in understanding the views of parents and carers, and enabling us to provide children and young people with the excellent education and support they deserve in a school close to family, friends and their communities.
Nic Brindle, chief executive officer of the Youth Engagement Schools Trust, said: “We are thrilled to open the Axis Academy to help support vulnerable children in the area and we are delighted to be able to start helping change children’s futures for the better.
“The Axis Academy offers a full broad academic curriculum taught by subject specialists allowing all students to find their passions and develop these leading to apprenticeships, college placements and A-levels.
“This is reinforced by a rounded and complete support network including mental health counselling, wellbeing support, and activities focussed on ensuring we have resilient lifelong learners.
“We are proud to be able to start helping change children’s futures for the better and we can’t wait to get started and share the successes of our first ever students as they successfully master their own education.”
Co-executive headteacher of Lavender Fields, Lucy Gibbs said: “We are extremely excited to be opening our doors to pupils in September and are honoured to have the opportunity to offer a life-changing experience to children and their families. Pupils will have a range of additional needs and enjoy an innovative, personalised and therapeutic education.”
Friday, 21 August 2020
Cheshire Constabulary is using a new tool to aid the force’s fight against caravan and motorhome thieves.
The VIN CHIP anti-theft identification system enables officers to scan a touring caravan or motorhome from up to 15 metres away to see if it has been reported as stolen and find out who the registered owner is.
They can be scanned at speeds of up to 60mph.
Cheshire’s Roads and Crime Unit officers are now using the system, and owners of touring caravans and motorhomes across the county are being advised to ensure that they have a VIN CHIP fitted and are registered with the Caravan Registration and Identification Scheme (CRiS).
Inspector Anton Sullivan, of the Roads and Crime Unit, said: “Due to supply and demand, the number of caravan and motorhome theft incidents tend to rise in the summer months.
“This year the demand for them is even greater than normal, with travel restrictions imposed due to the coronavirus pandemic making staycations, mobile homes and caravan holidays more popular than ever.
“So we could not have asked for a better time to add the VIN CHIP scanning system to our armoury for when we are out on patrol and monitoring our roads.
“Used by many other police forces in the UK, ports officers and also in mainland Europe and Scandinavia, it has substantially increased the number of stolen caravans and motorhomes that have been recovered and returned to their rightful owner.”
Since 2008 a radio frequency chip containing a unique vehicle identification number (VIN) number has been embedded into all UK-approved touring caravans when they have been made.
Owners of older caravans can have one fitted at a relatively small cost, and owners of caravans made between 2008 and 2016 can pay to have their chip upgraded so that it works as well as the newer ones. This may have an insurance benefit with some companies.
Motorhome owners can also pay to have a VIN CHIP fitted, and some manufacturers are now embedding them into all their new motorhomes.
Insp Sullivan added: “Working like a speed gun, a VIN CHIP scanner enables an officer to quickly see if a caravan or motorhome on the move has been reported as stolen, and who the registered owner is.
“Once a caravan or motorhome has been identified as stolen we will endeavour to bring the thief, or thieves, to justice, and have it returned to its owner.
“Our officers are now using the system to this end across Cheshire.
“However, the system will not work for touring caravan or motorhome theft victims unless they have a VIN CHIP fitted.
“Touring caravan and motorhome owners are advised to have a VIN Chip fitted and to have the vehicle registered with CRiS to help their mobile home be located in the event of it being stolen.
David Keane, Police and Crime Commissioner for Cheshire, said: “I am delighted to hear that Cheshire Constabulary has a new tool to help officers catch caravan and motorhome thieves and recover stolen vehicles.
“Opportunist thieves could not only potentially ruin someone’s staycation but could also put touring caravan and motorhome owners at risk of losing thousands of pounds if their vehicle is stolen.
“I urge all caravan and motorhome owners across the county to follow the advice from Cheshire Constabulary and check the security of their vehicles.”
Anyone with any information or footage regarding the theft of caravans or motorhomes is asked to call Constabulary on 101, give the details via https://www.cheshire.police.uk/ro/report or contact Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.
Further security advice for caravan and motorhome owners is available on our website https://www.cheshire.police.uk/news/cheshire/news/articles/2020/8/cheshire-officers-using-new-tool-to-combat-caravan-and-motorhome-thefts/
We Are Turning A Negative Into A Positive - Haslington Residents
We've unfortunately had several reports of anti-social behaviour at the village green in Haslington. In response to this, we've worked with the Cheshire East Anti-social Behaviour Team.
Anti-social behaviour reports have been completed and letters will be received by those who have been involved.
We are however are aware that we've all been experiencing a different way of life recently due to COVID-19, and in the near future will be providing more free Youth Skills sessions to encourage positive behaviour in our community and offer young people new and healthy hobbies.
For more details about these see our Facebook and Twitter pages :-
Discussions including health and safety meetings around risk assessments have taken place with the Oakhanger Team to offer Kayaking in the near future.
Cheshire East families are being invited to take part in an array of summer activities to mark Love Culture Week.
A host of events and visitor attractions are on offer this week (17-22 August) which can be enjoyed safely across the borough.
Tatton Park’s parkland, gardens, farm and mansion are now all open for the public to enjoy as well as many National Trust properties and gardens, such as Arley Hall. Jodrell Bank, now given ‘world heritage’ status, is also set to welcome visitors back from Saturday 22 August.
Crewe Cultural Forum is hosting a series of free or low-cost events this week in the Lyceum Square. The #CreWECREATE programme includes children’s crafts with Creative Crewe, Creative Minds Cheshire and David Jewkes Art.
Theatre workshops are being held in partnership with the Platform Theatre, as well as introduction to photography classes with Crewe Photographic Society. Arts and crafts activities are drop-in sessions, however, workshops need to be booked online for social distancing preparations via: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/organizations/events.
Many places have now opened safely with the We’re Good to Go kitemark for attractions. And while some places remain closed for the time being, there are also a range of online programmes taking place this week. Cinemac in Macclesfield, Wild Rumpus’ summer programme and Electric Picture House exhibitions can be accessed via their websites and the council’s Live Well service.
Councillor Nick Mannion, Cheshire East Council’s cabinet member for environment and regeneration, said: “Our visitor economy is normally worth nearly £1billion a year and supports approximately 12,000 jobs. Love Culture Week is a great government initiative, giving an opportunity to profile cultural activities, events and attractions available to us here in Cheshire East – digitally and outdoors.
“The council’s culture team is working hard to support our local economy and community organisations to generate new activity, to bring confidence back during the pandemic. However, with so much restarting and such a range of cultural activities on the doorstep, we hope families will use the rest of the school holidays to explore Cheshire East.”
Many online activities being provided by arts and cultural organisations can be accessed across the UK. Search visitcheshire.com for ideas and inspiration on what to do for the remainder of the summer.
Sunday, 16 August 2020
Cheshire and Merseyside has been awarded Suicide-Safer Community status by Living Works, the world’s leading suicide prevention training company.
This award is symbolic of the hard work of colleagues and partners from across Cheshire and Merseyside over the last five years, implementing the NO MORE Suicide Strategy together.
The sub-region fulfils all the high standards required for the accreditation through an improvement approach to working. This is difficult to achieve for one locally, so to have been successful as a sub-region is a tremendous accomplishment.
It is testament to the excellent integrated working, innovation and cross-cutting programmes that Cheshire and Merseyside partners deliver as system leaders.
In order to be recognised as a Suicide-Safer Community, there are ten areas of community action that must be addressed. These include training, suicide bereavement, leadership and mental health promotion.
There is still much more to be done in order to achieve zero suicides in the regions but this award signals great progress.
Sue Forster, Chair of the Cheshire & Merseyside NO MORE Suicide Partnership Board and Director of Public Health for St Helens said “So many people have contributed towards this prestigious accolade. I am grateful for their dedication and support. We truly have a fantastic partnership approach to suicide prevention and have achieved many things from training to awareness raising campaigns and supporting those bereaved by suicide.
“On behalf of the NO MORE Suicide Partnership Board I would like to thank all colleagues and partners who have helped us achieve this award. As we refresh the NO MORE Suicide strategy and action plan, we will continue to work together in our aim to reach zero suicide in Cheshire & Merseyside.”
Louise Gittins, lead elected member for Suicide Prevention in Cheshire & Merseyside and Leader of Cheshire West & Chester Council added: “I am delighted to hear that Cheshire & Merseyside have received this award.
“I have been so impressed with the work that has been carried out to prevent suicide in our area and have seen the dedication and commitment of the Board, operational groups and partners throughout Cheshire & Merseyside. I look forward to working with colleagues in the future on this important public health issue.”
Dr Matt Tyrer, acting director of public health at Cheshire East Council, said: “Suicide and mental health are topics that many people feel unable to talk about for fear of being misunderstood or others being judgemental.
“This award and the training behind it will allow the public health team at Cheshire East Council, and teams across the sub region, to be well equipped with the necessary skills to work with partners and residents to spread awareness, offer support and to reduce stigma.
“Ultimately improving our mental health and wellbeing and feeling empowered to talk about how we are feeling will help us to reach zero suicides in Cheshire East.”
The award will be celebrated and acknowledged at the World Suicide Prevention Day webinar led by Champs Collaborative on the 10th September 'Hope and Recovery in the time of COVID-19'. Registration for this webinar will open shortly.
Councillor Sam Corcoran, leader of Cheshire East Council has announced that Councillor Sarah Pochin, Bunbury ward, has been appointed as the council’s business champion, to support economic recovery in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic.
The newly created role is set to support businesses on our high streets, engaging with SMEs, larger organisations and those facing unemployment across the borough. Councillor Pochin will support and advise cabinet members on the following;
- Regulatory and government policy to aid high street and town centre recovery across Cheshire East
- The promotion of the borough and appropriate support mechanisms to attract inward investment
- Development of the council’s commercial strategy and the commercial ventures
- Delivery of the rural action plan in relation to support to the rural economy in Cheshire East
- Delivering a sustainable and green economy in Cheshire East including the development of low carbon industry.
Together with the relevant cabinet members and officers, Councillor Pochin will engage with businesses and corporate representatives across Cheshire East, to successfully deliver agreed targets within approved timescales.
On her appointment, Councillor Sam Corcoran, leader of Cheshire East Council, said: “Covid-19 has had a profound impact on businesses in Cheshire East, as it has across the UK and internationally. However, I am proud of the borough’s economy, its businesses and workers and I am confident that we can overcome the obstacles that Covid-19 has created. I look forward to the benefit of Councillor Pochin’s advice and experience in supporting the council’s economic recovery across the borough.”
Councillor Sarah Pochin, said: “I am delighted to be given the opportunity to take on a vital role, as part of the council’s support for economic recovery. Our borough continues to face many challenges during the Covid-19 pandemic. As business champion, I am looking forward to supporting the cabinet in taking this important agenda forward.
“Aiding economic recovery is a necessity, to attract new investment and develop our rural and green economies. I will work hard, alongside cabinet, to ensure all businesses and their employees across Cheshire East are supported.”
Cheshire East Council has launched the third phase of the local discretionary grant scheme, this final phase will close at 8am on Monday 17 August 2020.
The council has already implemented a second phase of this grant scheme which closed on Friday 26 June. This third phase seeks to support the remainder of businesses across the borough who failed to qualify for the first and second phase. This phase will be open to:
- Local independent retail, hospitality and leisure businesses occupying premises with a rateable value in excess of £20,000;
- Bed & breakfasts which pay council tax instead of business rates;
- Charity properties in receipt of charitable rate relief which would otherwise have been eligible for small business rate relief or rural rate relief;
- Small businesses in shared offices or other flexible workspaces that do not pay business rates with annual rental costs of between £3,000 and £51,000;
- Regular market traders with fixed building costs, such as rent, who do not have their own business rates assessment.
Grants of between £2,500 and £25,000 may be awarded. In line with government guidance, it is anticipated many grants will be below £10,000 to ensure the fund can benefit a larger number of businesses.
This revised policy has strict eligibility criteria including mandatory requirements set by government, which businesses will need to review before they apply. Some of the criteria are that businesses:
- Have fewer than 50 employees and meet the requirements of being a small business as defined in Section 33 Part 2 of the Small Business. Enterprise and Employment Act 2015, and the Companies Act 2006;
- Are able to clearly evidence a drop-in income due to Covid-19 of in excess of £750 for the quarter March 1-31 May 2020;
- Can clearly evidence and identify ongoing fixed property-related costs, for business premises in Cheshire East, in excess of £750 for the period 1 March - 31 May 2020. This information will be used to assess applications to ensure consistency with phase one of the grant scheme;
- Operate their business from home;
- Not breach State Aid requirements by accepting the grant;
- Are not eligible for phase one, two or three (part one) of the council’s discretionary grant.
Only one application will be accepted per business. Funds will not be set aside for applications submitted without adequate supporting information pending the receipt of further information.
Councillor Nick Mannion, Cheshire East Council’s cabinet member for environment and regeneration, said: “We are actively encouraging all businesses across the borough to apply for the third and last phase of the discretionary grant fund. This is the last chance for eligible businesses to gain funding to aid their revenue, it is an opportunity not to be missed.
“Cheshire East is a desirable location for businesses and our towns are the hub of the community, we want to see these businesses thrive, to overcome the hardships of Covid-19. The borough will continue to develop regeneration and infrastructure projects, investing in our towns, as we begin to look forward to the future.”
However, this funding is limited due to being in its final phase and the council may not be able to provide a grant to every eligible business and charity that applies.
Councillor Mick Warren, Cheshire East Council’s cabinet member for communities, said:
“Our towns have been at the epicentre of the pandemic, suffering loss of income from the lockdown. The third phase of discretionary funding will provide further help to our local businesses get back on their feet.
“I would advise businesses across Cheshire East to utilise this concluding grant fund and apply as soon as possible to avoid disappointment.”
More information, including a full list of criteria and evidence required before an application can be submitted, can be found by visiting: https://form.cheshireeast.gov.uk/service/Discretionary_Grant_Phase_3_Application_Form
All applications submitted within this phase with adequate supporting information will be considered in order of receipt, and grants awarded subject to funds remaining. If you have already applied in a previous phase of the discretionary grant scheme, please do not apply again.
It has been an extraordinary year by anyone’s estimation and young people have been affected significantly – so ahead of the A-level and GCSE results being announced, Cheshire East Council is paying tribute to them.
The council hopes that young people get the results they deserve and that they are able to progress with the next steps in their life journey. It is also very important to recognise the outstanding work of schools and colleges across Cheshire East to best support students to complete revised assessment arrangements this year under extremely challenging circumstances.
The positive attitude that staff have shown in working in circumstances that nobody could have predicted at the start of the year, has been nothing short of exemplary and the role that parents and carers have played in supporting that effort is something that they should also be very proud of.
Councillor Kathryn Flavell, Cheshire East Council cabinet member for children and families, said: “I am particularly proud of all the young people of Cheshire East, who have had to significantly adapt their learning approaches in order to complete their courses to the best of their abilities.
“This can be an anxious time of year for young people and this year has been challenging for everybody, especially with regards to the uncertainty of assessment arrangements. I want to thank all staff, who have worked tirelessly to support our pupils and the young people themselves, who have studied hard to achieve their potential.
“I also want to thank family members and friends, who have had an increased role at home in supporting both academic learning and the wellbeing of young people. I really hope young people get results that enable them to progress into their chosen next phase of education, apprenticeship, training or employment.”
This year the council will not be able to provide results information collectively across Cheshire East. Neither will individual schools and colleges be able to provide A-level or GCSE results, due to the impact of Covid-19 on arrangements for national examinations.
Schools and colleges will offer support and advice on next steps based on students’ results. Young people can also contact the council’s youth support service via this online form or by visiting www.cheshireeast.gov.uk and searching for ‘youth support’, which can advise on the opportunities that are available.
Cheshire East Council is re-introducing cash payments at its car parks from Monday 17 August.
The council re-started charges at pay and display car parks in June, as a number of lockdown measures were starting to be carefully lifted.
At this time, the option of cash (coin) payments at most car park machines, was withdrawn in order to reduce risk of virus transmission during these early stages of opening up town centres.
Since June, the council has been monitoring car park usage and has been listening to feedback from car park users, residents and businesses. Car parks have been getting progressively busier in the weeks since lockdown and people are becoming more used to visiting town centres while observing Covid safety measures.
Councillor Laura Crane, cabinet member for highways and waste said: “I would like to thank residents for using car parks responsibly since lockdown measures have been lifted.
“I continue to strongly recommend that people use cashless payment options where this is possible.
“Our parking machines offer both ‘chip and pin’ and contactless options as means of payment. We also offer the alternative option to use ‘RingGo’, the mobile app, if someone wanted to avoid using the machine completely.
“We have found that a mobile app is the preferred option for many people and are looking to improve that offer over time.
“However, we recognise that cashless options are not the best payment option for everyone, and we are now offering cash payment for those who choose to use it.
“While Covid, and the risks it presents, has not gone away, we want to support and encourage people to come back into our town centres. But this needs to be done progressively and with care, with due regard to advice from public health professionals.
“As with all changes put into place in response to the Covid pandemic, these measures are being kept under review.”
Whos Knocking At Your Door? Its Okay Not To Answer and Its Okay To Ask For Id
I hope that you are well.
We want you know that it's okay not to answer the door anyone that you don't know. Furthermore, if you do answer the door, it's okay to ask for ID or to close the door at any point if you feel uncomfortable.
We've had reports that in near by villages (Winterley and Shavington, we've had door-to-door sales people knocking on and making residents uncomfortable by saying that they have recently been released from Prison and should buy from them.
You do not have to buy anything that you do not want to buy and can always drop us a message for a reassurance or speak to myself out and about if you need reassurance.
We care that you feel safe in your home, in your community, in your county and therefore we will be here for you!
We're lucky enough to have fabulous Neighbour Watch Teams in our villages, who are key contacts that link in with me whenever it's needed to help to keep you safe and updated as to what's happening in your area.
The intelligence that they provide, and you can provide can help us to send out messages like this to keep our community a step ahead of anything going on in the area
Thank you for your time.
To report any crime, please call 101 or 999 always in emergencies. You can email me intelligence on firstname.lastname@example.org
If you do email intelligence, please include your name, DOB, address and time and date of occurrence.
PCSO Lizzie Jolley 22582
Thursday, 6 August 2020
Cheshire East Council has revealed its first active travel projects as part of plans to support the borough through recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic.
Nine new schemes will come into effect this month as a first phase to improve routes to schools and workplaces, boost social distancing, encourage walking and cycling and improve access our town centres. Measures will also help to reserve capacity on public transport for those who really need it and should help to reduce congestion on some key routes to schools. Further schemes will be developed in further phases, following pledged government funding of up to £619,000.
The move follows recent submissions by town and parish councils and local members of more than 500 local ideas as to what measures may work in their towns and villages.
The first nine active travel schemes, totalling investment of £155,000, will be located at:
● Coronation Street, Crewe, near Sir William Stanier School – 20mph zone and through traffic restricted to cyclists and pedestrians;
● Crewe town centre – improved access for cycles;
● Congleton town centre – improved access for cycles;
● Macclesfield town centre – improved access for cycles;
● Ivy Road, Macclesfield – through traffic restricted to buses, cyclists and pedestrians;
● Hawthorn Lane, Wilmslow – through traffic restricted to cyclists and pedestrians;
● Old Middlewich Road, Sandbach – 20mph zone and parking suspension;
● Ladies Mile, Knutsford – through traffic restricted to cyclists and pedestrians; and
● Lodge Road, Alsager – through traffic restricted to cyclists and pedestrians.
Councillor Laura Crane, Cheshire East Council cabinet member for highways and waste, said: “This is exciting news and the part of steps by this council to promote social distancing and encourage more people to get active and cycle and walk more.
“I would like again to thank everyone who has worked with us so quickly to get active travel ideas and proposals up and running so swiftly in our towns and villages.
“We know people’s travel behaviour has changed during the lockdown – and we are determined to lock in the benefits of more people walking and cycling to make our town centres safer, healthier and more welcoming to shoppers and visitors.
“We have seen an increase in more people walking and cycling in our borough and as more people turn to these active ways of travel, we need to work together to provide safe spaces for people to carry out these journeys.
“These initial projects are, by their very nature and the short timescales involved, an experiment. We will continue to work with the town and parish councils to develop, review and refine these measures and others, as appropriate, before anything becomes permanent.
“Our aim is to deliver schemes that are right for each town and developed in partnership with each local area and local members.”
Councillor Suzie Akers Smith, Cheshire East Council’s walking and cycling champion, said: “Ditching the car and taking up daily active travel is good for your health, good for the environment and good for promoting social distancing to combat Covid-19. Creating a safe environment will encourage people out of their cars and be more active.
“It also helps make our town centres safer and more attractive places to visit, spend time and spend money.
“There has never been a better time to walk or cycle – especially shorter journeys included as part of our daily activity – and this really helps to forge greener habits, to reduce congestion, improve air quality and help fight climate change.
“Being bold in these measures may attract additional funding from government and we welcome feedback both positive and negative on the measures being proposed.”
The council aims to develop a series of projects, informed by discussions with town and parish councils and ward members, that will be delivered in coming weeks, including:
● Pop-up cycle lanes, with protected spaces for cycling;
● Measures to reduce rat-running in streets;
● Improved walking and cycling routes to school;
● Safer junctions, with the potential for bus and cycle-only corridors;
● Implementing lower speed limits; and
● Wider pavements, which also enables social distancing.
Schemes being considered as part of the second phase of active travel improvements to be constructed in the Autumn, subject to the Council receiving DfT funding include:
· Manchester Road between Wilmslow and Handforth;
· Vernon Way, Mill Street and Nantwich Road in Crewe;
· Black Lane, Manchester Road and Sunderland Street in Macclesfield;
· High Street in Sandbach;
· West Street and Mill Street in Congleton;
· Various streets on the Knutsford Revolution Cycle Route;
· London Road between Alderley Edge and Wilmslow;
· St Ann’s Road in Middlewich
Detailed plans for active travel measures can be found on the following website: https://cheshireeastactivetravel.commonplace.is/
Cheshire East Council has welcomed the announcement on 4 August 2020, of £15.5 million of the Getting Building Fund for investment in schemes in Cheshire and Warrington, one of which is a new Validation Centre of Excellence at Alderley Park.
The Council has worked with Cheshire and Warrington Local Enterprise Partnership (C+W LEP) to identify ‘shovel-ready’ infrastructure projects that will support sub-regional economic recovery and local businesses, as set out in the Government’s ‘New Deal’ programme for Britain.
Building on the success of the Medicines Discovery Catapult led Lighthouse Lab, Medicines Discovery Catapult and Alderley Park will create a new Validation Centre of Excellence for innovative diagnostics, biomarkers and complex medicines and develop the UK’s onshore diagnostic capability and capacity and the associated supply chain.
The project incorporates the creation of specialist laboratories, including a Category 3 biosafety facility for testing of new diagnostics, biomarkers and therapeutics for highly infectious pathogens, including respiratory viruses such as Covid-19.
The council is playing a key partnership role to support this scheme with flexibility to provide the greatest economic benefits to the area. It is essential to promote and finance green infrastructure projects across the borough, particularly Investing in critical research facilities to help combat the pandemic to influence economic recovery.
Councillor Craig Browne, deputy leader of Cheshire East Council, said: “The council is committed to supporting scientific research and innovation in Cheshire East, home to cutting-edge life science facilities that are internationally acclaimed for their highly skilled workforce.
“This investment recognises the significance of these leading projects and the fundamental role that Cheshire East can play in fighting life changing and life-threatening infections, including Covid-19.”
Dr Kath Mackay, managing director of Bruntwood SciTech - Alderley Park, said: “It’s brilliant that Alderley Park has been recognised by the government for its world-leading facilities and scientific capabilities. This additional investment will help us to continue building our life science cluster at the park and will enable us to play a key role in stimulating economic growth within the region and UK.”
Professor Peter Simpson, chief scientific officer at Medicines Discovery Catapult, said: "I am delighted with this funding, that will enable us to extend the state-of-the-art lab capabilities, which we already offer to companies and innovators in this region. The Validation Centre will enable translational research for new therapeutics and diagnostics that will improve the UK's response to major health challenges. This will become a fantastic new life science asset in Cheshire East.”
Cheshire East Council is offering free training to children, who are looking to increase their confidence cycling on roads.
The sessions – that will run for a fortnight at both the Cumberland Arena in Crewe and Macclesfield Leisure Centre on Priory Lane – start on Monday 17 August. Children will have the option of taking morning or afternoon sessions.
The courses are aimed at children aged 11-16, who can ride a bike but need support to feel more comfortable on the roads. The training sessions will begin in traffic-free environments to ensure participants have the basic skills to be safely riding on the roads such as signalling and looking over their shoulder.
Sessions will then progress to a light-traffic setting and introduce various elements such as road position, turning in and out of junctions and overtaking parked cars safely.
Councillor Mick Warren, Cheshire East Council cabinet member with responsibility for leisure, said: “It is vital that we give young people opportunities to get out and be active in the school summer holidays. Naturally, this is even more relevant this year when we are still a little limited in what we can do and when we can do it. These lessons will be a real boost to a lot of young people and their families.”
Councillor Suzie Akers Smith, Cheshire East Council’s walking and cycling champion, said: “I am thrilled that we are able to offer these courses to children this summer. The training presents a great opportunity for children to get the skills they need to become confident cyclists, and by providing the classes free of charge, we know that anyone will be able to get involved.”
The training will complement a series of cycle-friendly infrastructure schemes that the council is introducing to improve facilities for cyclists across the borough.
Morning sessions will run from 9.30am-12.30pm, while the afternoon sessions will run from 1-4pm on Monday to Friday. The only requirement for children taking part is that they bring their own bike and helmet.
Booking is essential for all sessions as places are limited. For more information and a full breakdown of session dates and times, please visit https://everybody.org.uk/what-we-offer/activities-for-kids/cycle-training-bikeability/
Wednesday, 5 August 2020
Detectives are issuing an urgent warning to the public after a recent spate in telephone scams which have left Cheshire victims without thousands of pounds.
Officers are continuing to see cases of courier fraud, this scam is mainly committed by organised crime groups (OCGs).
A member of the OCG, known as the ‘victim communicator', makes a phone call to vulnerable victims telling them that they are a police officer or work at a bank.
They persuade the victim to co-operate with an ‘operation’ designed to gather evidence or identify offenders responsible for fictional offences.
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.
Money, items or documents are then handed over to the ‘courier’, who attends the address of the victim or meets them nearby, on the promise that the money or item will be returned or compensation provided.
Cheshire Constabulary are now urging others to be aware of these scams and alert vulnerable neighbours or family.
Detective Sergeant Chris Jacques from Cheshire Constabulary’s Economic Crime Unit said: “These fraudsters are extremely convincing and can be very persistent especially when targeting vulnerable victims.
“Police officers, banks and other such services will never ask you to withdraw money or provide card details so please do not be taken in by these scams.
“It is important to remember that telephone numbers can be easily spoofed and you should never trust a number displayed on your telephone.
“They may also attempt to ask victims to call back on 999, 101 or 161 to verify that they are genuine but this is part of the scam and they keep the line open so that the victim continues speak with the scammers believing that they are genuine officials.
“Anyone who is receiving calls asking for money to be withdrawn and handed over to a courier should call 101 or report it to Action Fraud.”
Police and Crime Commissioner David Keane said: “It is quite concerning that there have been more cases of fraud across Cheshire.
“Fraudsters will stop at nothing for their own criminal gain and I know that the force will continue to crackdown on the mindless scammers and do everything in their power to bring them to justice.
“I am urging residents to continue to inform family and friends about these callous scams to ensure that no-one else falls victim.”
Anyone who believes they have been contacted fraudulently or have been a victim of fraud should call Cheshire Police on 101 and Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040.
More than 3,000 new homes were built in Cheshire East in the last financial year – which is likely to put the borough among the highest performing areas in the country for house-building investment again.
From April 2019 to the end of March this year, 3,065 additional new homes were built in Cheshire East. This is 1,265 above the annual requirement for 1,800 new homes, established through the Local Plan Strategy, which was adopted in 2017.
It represents a further significant boost in the supply of market and affordable homes in the borough and is the seventh successive year in which the level of housing delivery has increased.
Councillor Toni Fox, cabinet member for planning said: “The delivery of new homes to meet the needs of our residents is welcomed and they play a vital role in maintaining a minimum five-year housing land supply.
“We are now halfway through the 20-year period covered by the Local Plan Strategy (2010-30). Following the recession in 2008 there remains a small shortfall, however housing delivery has increased substantially since the adoption of the plan.
“In common with the situation and uncertainty being faced across the country, the number of homes built in the current financial year to March 2021 may fall as a result of Covid-19. We will continue to carefully monitor our housing supply position, particularly in light of the government’s proposed radical reforms to the planning system.”
Cheshire East Council is launching a new streamlined application process today, supporting businesses to introduce al fresco facilities.
This supports the council’s overall approach in supporting our high streets, town centres and the hospitality sector as part of our economic recovery plan arising from the pandemic.
The application process is straightforward and subject to a modest fee of £100.
The new policy will help prospective applicants, who should familiarise themselves with the specified details before applying. This sets out probable areas where licences will be permitted, the process to be followed and the relevant conditions.
All businesses with outdoor seating on the public highway require a licence, the council is encouraging any business already providing or seeking to provide al fresco facilities on public highways to apply for a pavement licence. Businesses also need to check that they have adequate public liability insurance to cover the area in question, as failure to have a licence may affect their insurance.
Councillor Laura Crane, Cheshire East Council cabinet member for highways and waste, said: “These streamlined provisions will temporarily allow many bars, pubs, cafes and restaurants to apply for licences, to accommodate outdoor dining on public highways. This fast-tracked route is ideal compared to the lengthier, more expensive standard regulatory processes.
“The new measures will support a safe al fresco dining experience on our pavements whilst maintaining adequate space for pedestrians. It is essential to follow current government guidance and signage in your local town, being conscious of public safety to help keep us all safe.”
Councillor Nick Mannion, Cheshire East Council’s cabinet member for environment and regeneration, said: “These temporary measures are supporting businesses to reopen their doors. Economically, this will help licenced premises to survive and rebuild income after the pandemic lockdown.
“Businesses and their customers do however need to be mindful, to respect other pedestrians using the pavements during this time. I would encourage all businesses looking to use outdoor seating areas to make sure they apply. The process is relatively straightforward and inexpensive.”
For more information on the application and how to apply visit: www.cheshireeast.gov.uk/alfresco
Completed applications will be determined within 10 working days.