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Sunday, 29 November 2020
Cheshire East Council’s locally supported Covid-19 contact tracing service is going live this week.
The new contact tracing service will not replace the national NHS Test & Trace system but is being designed to complement it.
The national test & trace team will provide the local team with a daily list of Covid-19 positive cases who they have been unable to contact within 24 hours. This can be for various reasons such as a lack of contact information or unavailability.
The council-run service will allow its own contact tracers to do welfare checks for residents who have tested positive and are required to self-isolate.
The purpose of the welfare check is to offer support, if required, during the isolation period. This support can include:
- Accessing essential supplies (such as food and medicines);
- Linking to social contact support services to prevent loneliness; and
- Financial support. If you are worried about falling into financial hardship as a result of having to isolate call 0300 123 5032 or visit https://www.cheshireeast.gov.uk/council_and_democracy/council_information/coronavirus/test-and-trace-support-payment.aspx
Dr Matt Tyrer, Director of Public Health for Cheshire East Council said: “It’s important that residents who have symptoms self-isolate immediately and only leave home to get a Covid-19 test. If this test comes back as positive you must continue to self-isolate to avoid spreading the virus further. It is also a legal requirement. We are here to support our local residents in meeting that requirement and ensure they don’t suffer undue hardship as a result.
“Having the virus may make many people feel extremely tired, so it’s important that you drink plenty of water and rest to allow your body to fight off the virus and recuperate.
“Our local contact tracing team will be able to offer advice and information on where to access help and support should you need it.”
Councillor Jill Rhodes, cabinet member for public health and corporate services at Cheshire East Council, said: “This Cheshire East service will allow us to have a more personalised approach to contact tracing, our residents will be able to hear a friendly local voice at the end of the phone, who can offer tailored advice and support.
“We understand that when self-isolating many residents may need practical support such as shopping for food or financial advice to help with bills. Our People Helping People initiative links up local volunteers to offer community-based support. Full details about this and information on benefits and financial advice can be found at https://www.cheshireeast.gov.uk/council_and_democracy/council_information/coronavirus/coronavirus-covid-19.aspx”
If you need urgent, practical support to self-isolate, help is available in the form of a test and trace support payment. More information and how to apply can be found at https://www.cheshireeast.gov.uk/council_and_democracy/council_information/coronavirus/test-and-trace-support-payment.aspx
The Cheshire East Council service launches this week and will have a phased roll-out across the borough. If you receive a call from the Cheshire East Covid contact tracing team, please take the call as information gathered will help the council to stop outbreaks and bring case numbers down across Cheshire East. This will result in us all being able to get back to a more normal way of life more quickly.
A reminder of isolation requirements for households;
To reduce the spread of COVID-19 everyone who has symptoms must self-isolate at home and only leave to get a test. If they test positive, they must continue to self-isolate at home. This can save lives. You must by law take the following actions immediately;
- Self-isolate for 10 days;
- Those in your household must self-isolate for 14 days and;
- Inform your employer of your period of self-isolation if you are due to work during this period at any place other than where you are self- isolating
- You must stay at home. Do not go to work, school or shopping;
- Do not send your children to school or nursery. They must stay home along with the rest of the household and;
- Do not invite friends or family into your home.
Failure to follow these instructions could result in a fine of up to £10,000.
Cheshire East has welcomed the government plan for a green industrial revolution, which supports the council’s ambitious target of being carbon neutral by 2025 and influencing carbon reduction across the borough.
The government’s plan sets out the approach that will be taken to ‘build back better’ – supporting green jobs and accelerating the national path to net zero carbon emissions. It brings together policies and significant new public investment to focus on ten priority areas aimed at tackling the climate emergency.
Among the ten points are plans to drive growth of low carbon hydrogen, accelerate the shift to zero emission vehicles, increase green public transport, cycling and walking and make buildings more energy efficient. The plan also details how the natural environment will be protected.
The council has already agreed a carbon neutral action plan and environment strategy, which clearly set out how Cheshire East can remain a green and sustainable place and highlight priority actions to reduce borough-wide emissions.
Councillor Nick Mannion, cabinet member with responsibility for environment and regeneration, said: “We are committed to taking action to tackle the climate emergency and welcome the plans the government has set out.
“The government plan complements our carbon neutral action plan, which focuses not only on how our 2025 carbon neutral target will be achieved, but also on how we will encourage all businesses, residents and organisations in our borough to reduce emissions.
“We are already responding to the green industrial revolution through training staff and members on carbon and climate change and are developing resources to support town and parish councils to respond to this challenge.
“Cheshire East is delivering innovative projects such as introducing green hydrogen into our refuse collection fleet, electrifying our highways vehicles and installing renewable energy onto our council buildings.
“We have planted 6,000 trees this year and have joined the Mersey Forest, which will help us to deliver significant increases in tree planting to absorb our carbon emissions.
“We are committed to taking actions that will have a positive impact on the environment and create opportunities to benefit our borough and will continue to make the required transformational changes to tackle the climate and environmental emergency.”
Councillor Quentin Abel, Cheshire East Council’s climate change champion, said: “The measures announced by the government are a welcome step in the right direction.
“The ambition and the desires are there. It is not yet world-leading by any measure but hopefully the government is beginning to understand the real importance of climate change and the environment to the whole of humanity.
“Words sadly are cheap. It will be the actions that make the difference.
“I note the recent government increases in the defence budget, which is of course important, particularly in relation to cyber threats. However, I would urge government to put an even greater spending emphasis on climate change and the environment, which is ultimately about the defence of humanity.
“If we use this opportunity properly, we as a nation will be better protected, happier and healthier.
“What we really need though is foresight, real planning for the future. Or that future will not involve us.”
Cheshire East Youth Council named the conference ‘Taboo’ to highlight the stigma that is still attached to mental ill health, which can often lead to making the issue more difficult for young people to manage.
It’s one of many activities of a youth council campaign aimed at signposting young people to support services and encouraging them to talk about mental health issues and seek help if they are struggling.
The virtual event brought together more than 120 delegates including children and young people from 13 schools and frontline professionals from the council, health and community organisations. On the day young people took the opportunity to discuss mental health issues that affect them, and the ways in which professionals can best support them.
Workshops were delivered on the topics of resilience, mental health first aid, five ways to wellbeing, male mental and emotional health, transition into adulthood, and the impact of Covid-19.
Cheshire East Council, partners and young people have been working together to develop services that support the issue of happiness and mental health since the formation of the Cheshire East Children’s Trust in 2015. Listening to and acting on what children, young people, parents, carers, and people who work with families say, is a key element of their plans.
Ruben Barrow, Cheshire East member of youth parliament, said: “For the last three years, young people across Cheshire East have voted mental health as one of their top issues as part of the annual UK Youth Parliament ‘Make your Mark’ ballot. This ballot provides a voice for young people and helps to establish the biggest issues they face.
“Our Taboo conference is just one of the ways we’re reaching out to young people in Cheshire East and letting them know that they are not alone, and that help is available.”
Amelia Oldroyd, Cheshire East member of youth parliament, said: “Today has been about listening to the experiences of young people and working together with schools to share and learn. Our aim is to create a community which cares and to provide someone to talk to, who understands.
“As someone who struggled with mental health issues during high school, I know how important it is to stop the stigma, and create an open culture in schools where we can talk about these issues and make people aware that support is available for those that need it.”
Councillor Kathryn Flavell, Cheshire East Council cabinet member for children and families, said: “Young people told us that they want more information on mental health services that are easy for them to access.
I’d like to thank our members of youth parliament and the youth council for a fantastic event. I’d also like to thank all the children and young people, who shared their views and suggestions on how we can develop services to support mental wellbeing and improve access across Cheshire East.
“We know that the current restrictions and changes to daily life can lead to children and young people feeling frustrated, angry, scared, anxious and alone. Today’s event featured some useful tips and ideas to look after your mental health during the pandemic and recognised that it’s OK not to feel OK.
“There is help and support out there and I ask children and young people to remember that they are not alone. Take the first steps and talk to someone today, we are in this together and lots of young people are feeling the same as you.”
To seek mental health support, children, young people and their families can find help at the council’s online mental health information point: www.cheshireeast.gov.uk/mentalhealthinfopoint
Surge In Online Shopping Fraud
Reports of online shopping fraud have surged by 30% over the pandemic as many of us continue to shop online in light of current restrictions.
Figures from Action Fraud show that criminals conned 17,407 shoppers out of almost £13.5 million over the Christmas period last year, an increase of over 20% when compared to the same period in 2018.
Action Fraud is warning the public to take extra care when shopping online, ahead of Black Friday and Cyber Monday, as shoppers search for bargains and gifts for loved ones in the run up to Christmas.
Top tips to shop online securely this festive season:
Where to shop:
Making a purchase from an online store you haven’t used before? Carry out some research first, or ask a friend or family member if they’ve used the site and about their experiences before completing the purchase.
Only create an account if necessary or to save you effort if you’re going to use that site a lot in the future. Be cautious if the website asks you for details that are not required for your purchase, such as your mother’s maiden name or the name of your primary school.
If you decide to go ahead with the purchase, ensure that the webpage where you enter your payment details is secure (website address starts with “https”). Using a credit card to pay online also means that should the worst happen and your payment details are compromised, your main bank account won’t be directly affected.
Some of the messages you receive about amazing offers may contain links to fake websites. Not all links are bad, but if you’re unsure, don’t use the link – go separately to the website. Report any suspicious emails you receive by forwarding them to: email@example.com You can also report suspicious text messages by forwarding them to 7726.
For more information about how to shop online securely, please visit:
Message Sent By
Action Fraud (Action Fraud, Administrator, National)
Cheshire East Council has launched a public consultation on its first ever customer experience strategy and is asking residents and businesses to share their views.
The consultation, which begins today and will end on 15 January 2021, seeks to engage with residents and businesses to gain their views on the council’s commitment to really consider their customers, delivering the best outcomes for the diverse range of people living and working in Cheshire East.
The strategy sets out the vision to put customers at the heart of everything the council does. The results of this consultation will help to ensure the strategy captures what a good experience should be for different types of customer – however and whenever they choose to make contact.
Cheshire East acknowledges that many services are delivered in partnership with other organisations, such as central government and the health service, and this strategy describes how the council will join up services where possible to provide value for money.
The customer experience strategy sets out how the council aims to:
- Work as one organisation to offer a clear and consistent experience for customers;
- Ensure staff have the knowledge, skills, capability and tools to deliver a positive experience, however and wherever a customer interacts with the council;
- Deliver what customers need at the first point of contact;
- Have clear information for customers to access on all services;
- Keep customers informed of progress and provide information which clearly sets out services, access routes and waiting times;
- Use innovative technology to support digital access to services, and;
- Provide value for money
Cllr Amanda Stott, cabinet member with responsibility for customer services, said: “With an estimated population of 384,000, Cheshire East is the third largest local authority in the North West, so it’s really important that we understand our people.
“Our customers may not have a choice of councils to deal with, but that doesn’t mean we can’t strive to ensure their experience with us is consistently of a high quality, that we adapt to changing needs and respond to feedback when designing and delivering our services.
“I am really pleased with the work that has gone into this strategy – the first of its kind for Cheshire East. Thank you to staff who took time to share their views during the internal consultation – their feedback has helped to further develop areas of the strategy before we launched this public consultation.
“This strategy is a great starting point in transforming the experience our customers have with us for the better. I look forward to helping the council really drive this forward.”
New Funding Available For Community Safety Projects
Cheshire police and crime commissioner (PCC) David Keane has launched a new fund that police officers and PCSOs will bid for to work with local residents on projects which make their area safer.
Each of the 122 policing communities in Cheshire will be allocated a £1,000 grant for bids that address community safety issues. An additional £10,000 will be allocated to each of Cheshire’s eight Local Policing Units to support larger scale projects which address local issues.
This Community Police Fund links directly to the recently launched initiative to increase police visibility in every community by providing a dedicated Police Constable (PC) and Police Community Support Officer (PCSO) for all 122 areas.
The fund has been developed using money seized under the Proceeds of Crime Act (PoCA) 2002 to send a clear message to criminals that crime doesn’t pay.
PCC David Keane said: “By taking out the profits that fund crime and reinvesting them into community, we can help prevent further offences and increase community safety.
“This fund will empower each of our 122 community PCs and PCSOs to work directly with local communities on tailored projects which make a real difference to your local area.
“They will work with you and with key partners in the local authority to develop a problem solving approach to prevent crime and anti-social behaviour.”
Each local police team will work closely with their local community as they look to develop bids for the projects which also must meet the priorities in the Police and Crime Plan. Bids must be submitted to the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner (OPCC) directly by local policing teams.
Grants will be awarded to new, one-off projects that leave a legacy as opposed to continuous year-on-year commitments. This could be, as an example, a road safety project, community engagement activities or a project which supports vulnerable people.
For more information on this fund and how it could benefit your area, please contact your local police team by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
Message Sent By
Daniel Millington (Cheshire Police / Cheshire Fire and Rescue Service, Media Officer, Corporate Communications)
Monday, 23 November 2020
Cheshire East Council has been working very closely with its schools to develop programmes to help learners respond to the challenges of school lockdown.
Since the first lockdown was announced in March, there has been a period of great innovation in remote education to ensure that students don’t miss out on what would usually be delivered through face to face learning in school.
The council has established innovative practice, which directly helps learners to get the best remote learning opportunities, should children need to be educated away from their school setting.
One example of this is the ‘EdTech Demonstrator’ programme, where an initial take up of more than 30 schools have set up an action hub accessing bespoke training in information technology – co-ordinated through the council.
The council is also targeting more disadvantaged learners to give them the best learning opportunities. This work has involved a programme with the Educational Endowment Foundation, which collects all national research into what works best for learners when having to work remotely.
All schools are having to address gaps in learning and establish catch up programmes for pupils. The council has set up a 20-session training and development package for teachers to meet literacy needs through ‘Literacy Counts,’ with a similar programme being planned for numeracy.
Councillor Kathryn Flavell, Cheshire East Council cabinet member for children and families, said: “These initiatives show a clear local authority commitment to embrace collaborative working and the collective support to meet the needs of all our learners.
“It is really pleasing to see this in action with so many fantastic opportunities being accessed through these national and local initiatives.
“The added pressures of Covid means it is very challenging to find quality time in schools to access training. I thank all staff and leaders, who are going above and beyond to embrace these fantastic opportunities to make a difference for their learners.”
All initiatives are available to maintained schools and academies.
“Tis the season to save lolly!” - It may seem that there’s too much to go wrong in
cyberspace to bother shopping online; but fear not - with these 12 scam saves of Christmas you can enjoy the benefits for online shopping whilst avoiding scams too:
• If it’s too good to be true it usually is. Don’t fall for it!
• Always use reputable websites when shopping or searching online.
• Research a website or company as much as possible before buying goods from them.
• Create a different, strong password for each of your online accounts. A recommended method is to use 3 random words together. For extra security, set up two-factor authentication’ which means you get a code sent to your phone to use.
• Type in the website address (the ‘URL’) in full into Google or other search engines. Avoid clicking on a link in an email, text or post, as this may take you to the fraudster’s site instead.
• Pay securely - check the address bar at the top left of the screen to make sure that the website address begins “https”. The ‘S’ stands for secure. There should also be a closed padlock image in front of the ‘https’.
• Don’t be ‘click-happy’! NEVER rush in to making a purchase.
• Don’t pay for anything by transferring money directly to people or companies you don’t know. Use secure payment methods such as Paypal, ApplePay etc.
• When you’ve finished paying, make sure you log out of the page or app. Simply closing it may not log you out automatically.
• Check URL’s of emails to ensure they are genuine. Scam emails are usually littered with spelling and grammar mistakes.
• Avoid ‘free’ or ‘low-cost’ trials – whether slimming pills or the latest tech. Without thoroughly reading the small print and trusted reviews, you could be signing up for large monthly direct debits which are difficult to cancel.
• Check your bank account regularly for any unknown transactions.
If you have been a victim of an online scam, report it to Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040
or at www.actionfraud.police.uk.
If you are having issues with something you have ordered online, call Citizens Advice on
0808 223 1133.
Always contact your bank immediately if you have transferred money to the scammer in the last 24 hours or you think your account details or PIN have been stolen.
Pcso Penny Probin
Cheshire East Council is inviting residents to have their say on a household waste recycling centre consultation.
The council currently runs eight household waste recycling centres (HWRCs) for use by residents. The contract for this operation ends in 2023 and therefore preparation for the procurement of a new contract is starting to take place.
Cheshire East Council’s approach to waste management is determined by its recently reviewed Municipal Waste Management Strategy.
The key aims of this strategy are to continue to encourage residents to reduce the amount of waste they produce, reuse any items, recycle and compost all they can and as a last resort, to place waste that cannot be managed any other way in the black bin. The council are striving to run a service that delivers the best for the environment.
Part of waste management is the provision of HWRCs, and the strategy shows that it is the council’s responsibility to ensure that the service remains fit for purpose and follows industry best practice.
The current contract comes to an end within three years and therefore the council will review the future service provision through Ansa, their wholly-owned environmental services company.
To have your say, complete the consultation online by using
The deadline for completion is 5pm on Monday 4 January 2020
If you would like to receive this questionnaire in another format, please call customer services on 0300 123 5511, who will organise for a copy to be sent.
Once the consultation closes, the council will analyse all responses, produce a summary report of them, and publish this online on their consultation web pages.
Cheshire East Council is urging the many thousands of unpaid carers to register for help and support via the Cheshire East Carers Hub on Carers Rights Day.
It is estimated that Cheshire East has more than 40,000 hidden carers, who are people from all walks of life, young and old who provide support to family or friends, who couldn't manage without this help. Many feel that they're doing what anyone would do in the same situation in caring for a mother, father, wife, husband, son, daughter or best friend. It is estimated that around three in five people will be carers at some point in their lives.
The Cheshire East Carers Hub provides information, advice and a wide range of specialist support services, designed to help adult and young carers continue in their caring role for as long as they choose and reduce the impact the caring role can have on their own health and wellbeing.
Anyone who thinks they are a carer is urged to register with the Cheshire East Carers Hub by calling 0300 303 0208, emailing email@example.com or by visiting www.cheshireeastcarershub.co.uk. Help is on hand which includes a 24/7 carers helpline, support to access funds and grants, access to counselling and help with health and wellbeing activities.
The call for carers to register with the Carers Hub comes on Carers Rights Day on Thursday 26 November – a day that aims to ensure that carers are aware of their rights, lets them know where to get help and supports and raises awareness of their needs.
Recent research by Carers UK shows that:
- Four in five unpaid carers (81 per cent) are currently providing more care than before lockdown;
- More than three quarters (78 per cent) of carers reported that the needs of the person they care for have increased recently;
- Most carers (64 per cent) have not been able to take any breaks at all in the last six months; and
- More than half (58 per cent) of carers have seen their physical health impacted by caring through the pandemic, while 64 per cent said their mental health has worsened.
Councillor Laura Jeuda, Cheshire East Council cabinet member for adult social care and health, said: “We recognise the impact that this pandemic is having on our unpaid carers, and without help and support, they can find themselves struggling and isolated with what can be very physical and emotional demands, and potentially risking their own health and wellbeing as a result.
“Whether you are a new carer or have been caring for someone for a while, it’s really important that carers understand their rights and are able to access the support that is available as soon as they need it.
“I ask anyone who thinks they are a carer to take those first steps to getting the support you are entitled to. Please get in touch and register with our Carers Hub, giving you access to a wealth of services and support including a caring voice at the end of a phone who really understands.”
Alec, a carer from Middlewich, said: “It took me a while to make that first step and register with the Carers Hub, and I’m so glad I did. Through the hub, I talk to other carers where we chat about things ranging from dementia to cake-making! It really does help me when I talk to other people who know what you are going through and pick up lots of hints and tips.
“You can be involved with the hub as much or as little as you want, it’s up to you really but it’s so reassuring that they are at hand if you need it. For example, on Carers Rights Day we are receiving free advice from a solicitor on powers of attorney.
“It’s so important that people like me, who spend time caring for someone they love, look after themselves, which is where the Carers Hub comes in. I would encourage anyone to give it a go. Nothing ventured, nothing gained. They really do care and go the extra mile and I appreciate it.”
Show Your Commitment To Challenging Bullying
Cheshire Anti-Bullying Commission is inviting you to sign its Charter to show your commitment to challenging bullying in your workplace or community organisation.
The Charter is the first time a county-wide pledge has been implemented to tackle bullying and it’s been developed in response to research the Commission has conducted into bullying among under 25s in Cheshire.
The Commission, which was established by Police and Crime Commissioner David Keane, has spoken to hundreds of people across Cheshire who have experienced bullying.
It has also reviewed academic research, serious case reviews and coroner’s reports on suicides where bullying has been a factor.
In response, it is recommending that all organisations in Cheshire come together in a united-front against bullying after it found more needs to be done to not only protect victims but also manage the behaviour of bullies themselves.
Signing the Charter is one way you can show your commitment to challenging bullying and protecting people in our communities. We have also developed a suite of resources for you to proudly display your commitment to the Charter and your support for a bullying-free environment.
Find out more and sign it here: https://cheshire-anti-bullying-charter.info/
PCC David Keane said: “I am proud to have set up Cheshire’s first Anti-Bullying Commission and I am proud of the work the Commission has undertaken so far. As a result of this first phase, focused on under 25s, we have identified a set recommendations which I believe can achieve real change for our young people in Cheshire and beyond.
“Through the work of the Commission we have heard some heartbreaking cases of how being bullied at a young age has severely affected people in later life and in some cases, has resulted in suicide or self-harm.
“What our findings have outlined is that tackling bullying is everyone’s business; the only way we are going to halt this bullying epidemic among all generations in our society is by working together to change behaviour and make it unacceptable to target someone simply just for who they are.
“It is crucial that we work together to ensure these are not just words in a report but actions to make a difference for our communities.”
You can read a full copy of the Cheshire Anti-Bullying Commission phase 1 report at: https://www.cheshire-pcc.gov.uk/cheshire-anti-bullying-commission/
Message Sent By
Caroline Tozer (Police and Crime Commissioner for Cheshire, Communications Officer, Police and Crime Commissioner)
Don’t fall foul of Black Friday scammers – that’s the message from Cheshire East Council.
People are being warned that conmen are preying on unsuspecting shoppers, as they seek out festive bargains online and elsewhere.
The council’s trading standards team fears that this week’s anticipated Black Friday online shopping spree could see more people falling victim to fraudsters, owing to the current rules on non-essential high street retail.
Residents are urged only to use legitimate online shopping sites and to be aware of the tell-tale signs of unscrupulous dealers, who exploit unsuspecting internet shoppers, some of whom may not be used to buying online.
There has been a steady increase in the number of people who have fallen victim to scams connected to Black Friday in recent years and the council is urging people to be vigilant.
Action Fraud, the national reporting centre for fraud and cybercrime, says UK online shoppers lost a startling £16m during the first lockdown between March and June and that figure could be even higher.
Councillor Mick Warren, cabinet member for communities, said: “The internet is a convenient way for us to buy goods or services from the comfort of our home. It gives us access to millions of products from all over the world, but this in return brings its own risks. Online safety is important to ensure you are getting what you pay for, your money is safe and that the whole experience remains positive.”
You may see Black Friday offers in various places online, such as on social media platforms, retailers’ websites and resale or auction sites. Fraudsters will use all of these means to try to get you to part with your money. Get Safe Online, the UK’s leading authority in online safety and security, gives these expert tips to help you and others spot and avoid the scams that are out there:
· Ensure shopping websites are authentic by carefully checking the address is spelled correctly. Type it in rather than clicking on a link in an email, text or post. Fraudsters can set up convincing websites with an appearance and address very similar to the authentic one;
· Make sure payment pages are secure by checking that addresses begin with ‘https’ (‘s’ is for secure) and there’s a closed padlock in the address bar;
· Don’t pay for anything by transferring money directly to people or companies you don’t know, however keen you are to buy. If it’s a fraud, it’s doubtful the bank will be able to recover or refund your money. If you can, pay by credit card; and
· Avoid clicking on links in unexpected emails, texts or posts, or email attachments. At this time of year, fake parcel firm delivery notifications are commonplace attachments or links: they could lead to fraud or identity theft.
When paying for goods, it’s important to remember that paying by credit card offers greater protection than with other methods, in terms of fraud, guarantees and non-delivery.
You should also try to safeguard and remember the password you have chosen for the extra verification services used on some websites, such as ‘Verified by Visa’ and never pay for goods when using an unsecured Wi-Fi connection.
If you, or someone you know, has purchased goods or services online and you are experiencing problems with the retailer, the Citizens Advice Consumer service can advise you on your consumer rights. They are available on 0808 223 1133, or they can be contacted online at: https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/consumer/get-more-help/if-you-need-more-help-about-a-consumer-issue/
Tuesday, 17 November 2020
Royal Mail Email Scam
*Scam Alert *
A scam email is being sent out from someone claiming to be from the ROYAL MAIL
That they have tried to deliver you a large letter from HM Revenue & Customs.
They are asking for you to ( Reschedule Now ) by clicking the link.
Please do not click on the link - Royal Mail do not have your email address.
Pcso Probin Probin - Crewe Central
Message Sent By
Penny Probin (Police, Community Support Officer, Crewe LPU)
Thursday, 12 November 2020
Discover Forest Bathing in Tatton Park’s Gardens and follow our step-by-step beginner’s guide, set beneath some of the Gardens most treasured trees.
Forest Bathing on your doorstep
Tatton Park is the perfect place to learn more about Forest Bathing and the art of re-connecting with nature. The Parkland and Gardens boast 1000s of trees; some of which have been there for 100s of years, no doubt giving pleasure over the centuries of countless members of the Egerton family, estate workers, rangers, gardeners and more recently, visitors. But has anyone known why these trees made them happy?
From a feeling to a science
Shinrin-Yoku (the Japanese term for forest bathing) has been studied in Japan for over 30 years. Their research into the health-boosting properties of trees has looked at the pleasure we feel walking through a forest, or just sitting beneath a tree and taken it from a feeling to a science. It has been scientifically proven that spending time beneath trees reduces stress levels, lowers your blood pressure and heart rate, boosts your immune system and increases feelings of happiness.
A beginner’s guide: The power of pine trees
The Pinetum in Tatton Park’s Garden is an invigorating introduction to Forest Bathing experience. Smell has a greater effect on our mind and body than any other sense. Take a log seat beneath the towering trees and breathe in the scent of pine. Pick up cones and needles from the floor or even run your hands along the branches. Pine resins can help many ailments but are especially helpful for easing breathing problems and aching muscles.
The Gardens and Parkland are open and ready to welcome you with new safety measures in place across the estate. To help ensure the health and wellbeing of our colleagues and visitors, we kindly ask you to follow the latest government advice on travel before you book to visit us.
If you are looking for a quieter experience, you may prefer to visit us mid-week if you can. All visits must be pre-booked online at tattonpark.org.uk
Book online now:
If you feel in need of a natural boost, book a ticket to Tatton Park’s Garden online at www.tattonpark.org.uk. National Trust members are free to enter the Gardens but still need to book tickets and time slot online. (Parkland entry £7 still applies).
Cheshire Police Recruiting Members To Join Audit Committee
Cheshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner David Keane and Chief Constable Darren Martland are looking for local people to help advise them on key issues relating to governance, finance and risk management.
They wish to appoint two additional members to their Joint Audit Advisory Committee, providing assurance on governance and financial matters.
The Joint Audit Advisory Committee was established the Committee to provide independent assurance and to support good governance and strong financial management.
They are particularly interested in applications from those who have a good understanding of risk management, governance, audit and financial controls and annual accounts and preferably, a background in risk and financial controls.
The recruitment process is fully supportive of equality and diversity and will strive to engage those who are representative of the community they serve. Applicants are welcomed from all underrepresented groups and support will be made available throughout the recruitment process for all applicants.
The closing date for applications is 5pm on 2 December 2020. Shortlisting will take place in December 2020 and interviews are planned for January 2021.
Further details and application forms can be found at https://www.cheshire-pcc.gov.uk/what-i-do/making-key-decisions/audit-advisory-commitee/audit-advisory-committee-recruitment/
If you wish to discuss the positions informally contact Clare Hodgson, Director of Finance on 01606 364000 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you have any queries in relation to equality and diversity, or have a request for any additional support you may need, please email email@example.com
Closing date for applications is 5pm on 2 December 2020. Your completed application form should be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Message Sent By
Caroline Tozer (Police and Crime Commissioner for Cheshire, Communications Officer, Police and Crime Commissioner)
Supporting You and Your Community Through Covid-19
We recognise that this is a challenging period for us all and even more so for vulnerable people. As Neighbourhood Watch we believe it is very important that we all take care and protect ourselves as a priority and where possible we safely carry on the great work of supporting and staying connected with our communities.
In England, between 5th November - 2nd December, national restrictions mean that:
- You should only leave home for food, medical reasons, exercise, education, or work
- You must work from home if you can
- You should avoid travel unless essential
- Schools and essential shops will remain open
Keeping your loved ones safe
The most valuable thing we can all do is keep ourselves and our loved safe - physically and emotionally.
- Our website signposts where you can get accurate advice and support with your emotional wellbeing.
- Sign up for the FREE Festival Of Discovery running online on 20th and 21st November for lively discussions on hot topics, entertainment, things to make and do, a chance to recharge your wellbeing, and real-life community stories from across the UK.
Supporting your community
There are a variety of ways in which you can support your community depending on your individual situation. A few ideas are:
- set up a Calling Tree to support those who are not connected via social media
- join forces with a Covid-19 Mutual Aid group
- connect with your neighbours with this Calling Card
- connect with your neighbours with this Kindness Card
- If you are, or you know someone who is, facing loneliness have a look at our Loneliness Toolkit
- sign up as a NHS Volunteer Responder - recruitment now open across England
As the programme evolves it will focus on direct support to the NHS with tasks such as the delivery of equipment to monitor vulnerable COVID-19 patients in their homes, and with stewarding people at vaccination clinics. They will also continue to support vulnerable people by delivering food and medication, and through Check In and Chat phone calls. They are not intending to replace any local volunteering activity. They aim to work collaboratively with volunteering leads in local areas.
If you are interested in joining as a volunteer you can attend an online meetings by clicking the link below at the specified time:
Thursday 19th November, 11.30-12.30 Join Microsoft Teams Meeting
Thursday 3rd December, 11.30-12.30 Join Microsoft Teams Meeting
Thursday 17th December, 11.30-12.30 Join Microsoft Teams Meeting
Beware of scams and crimes
Criminals are using the COVID-19 pandemic to scam the public. To help you avoid becoming a victim, we have highlighted on our website the wide variety of COVID-19 scams and crimes which have arisen, key protection advice and guidance on how to report these scams.
Community response stories
For further inspiration on ways in which you can support your community, have a look at our Community Response Stories. If you have a story you would like to share, please submit it using this form.
Domestic abuse survivors
Are you or someone you know is a domestic abuse survivor, the information below may be very useful.
- Women’s Aid Network: Many survivors will be feeling unsafe isolating in a house with an abusive person, and isolated from their support networks. Women’s Aid have put together some advice and information about support available. See Women’s Aid COVID-19 Resource Hub
- Safe Lives: They have put together some resources for people living with domestic abuse, and the professionals supporting them. They have also produced guidance for friends and family.
- Refuge: They are there for you if you, or someone you care about, is experiencing domestic abuse. Phone the National Domestic Abuse Helpline on 0808 2000 247. They also have a range of digital resources available at refuge.org.uk and nationaldahelpline.org.uk.
- Neighbourhood Watch: We have a range of information on domestic abuse on our website including how to help, spotting the signs and more. See more in our Domestic Abuse Toolkit.
NEIGHBOURHOOD WATCH NETWORK, Central Support Team
A major revamp has taken place of the borough’s leisure and recreation spots as part of the council’s long-term strategy to raise the standard of local amenities.
The municipal parks strategy sets out the council’s long-term ambitions for bringing local parks and outdoor recreation areas up to a consistently high standard and to explore alternative avenues of funding and management.
The council has invested £500,000 in Browns Lane recreation area, in Wilmslow. This will enable the site to be transformed into a small neighbourhood park for people of all ages.
The park includes an accessible path with seating for rest and relaxation, a play area with many inclusive play opportunities, a multi-use games area and an informal natural turf ‘kick about’ pitch. A sustainable drainage system has been installed and this includes an attractive new pond.
In line with the council’s municipal parks strategy, the money has come from developer contributions linked to new housing developments. It provides a much-needed recreation facility for the Wilmslow and Dean Row area and represents a further achievement in the council’s long-term ambitions for sustainable quality parks and outdoor amenities.
Councillor Laura Crane, Cheshire East Council cabinet member with responsibility for green spaces, said: “This project has been eagerly anticipated amongst many local residents keen to have this green space transformed. I’m delighted that the work is progressing so well. There is still more to do, such as signage installation and tree planting, but the project is well on its way in allowing local families and young children to benefit from a first-class recreation park.
“The ongoing Covid-19 pandemic has highlighted the value and importance of our outdoor green spaces as the country has moved into a second national lockdown.
“The council has always been committed to the long-term improvement of our parks and open spaces owing to the health benefits they bring to our communities.”
Councillor Toni Fox said: “As local ward member, I am delighted that the long awaited for improvements have been made to what was previously an underused recreation area. This is a fantastic local facility that has been funded by developer contributions. It has been designed to be of benefit to residents of all ages year round, and is within walking distance for many who live in the Dean Row area, meaning they no longer have to drive to other places.
“I’d like to thank Ansa for all their assistance, particularly in relation to the extensive public consultations they carried out with local residents at the design stage of the scheme. Thank you also to the contractors for all their hard work and for keeping the project on schedule.”
The council works with a large number of local ‘friends groups’, parish and town councils to deliver its strategy and ensure that all its parks and green spaces meet local needs.
Each year the council undertakes a number of park and play area improvement projects in towns across the borough. The local community is always involved in the design and takes part in a consultation to check that they are supportive of the plans.
This week we are tackling Knife Crime Op Sceptre runs from November 9th to 15th and aims to keep knives and blades out of circulation, while also increasing awareness about the dangers of carrying knives.
During the week, people are being encouraged to leave unwanted knives in the amnesty bins at your local Police station.
If you would like to report someone in possession of a knife, know whether they are being hidden or are simply concerned about your loved one, please contact us by ringing either 101 or Crime Stoppers on 0800 555 111.
Pcso Penny Probin.
Message Sent By
Penny Probin (Police, Community Support Officer, Crewe LPU)
Over the weekend there has been an increase of burglaries and shed break-ins, please be alert, garden security lighting would help deter predators, good security locks fitted to sheds.
Be vigilant, ring your neighbours let them know what's going on in the area.
Ring 101 if you witness any suspicious activity.
Message Sent By
Penny Probin (Police, Community Support Officer, Crewe LPU)
Cheshire East has pledged to secure the future of local communities by joining the Countryside Climate Network, delivering on its promise to be carbon neutral by 2025 and influencing carbon reduction across the borough.
Rural areas are already suffering some of the most severe effects of climate change in the UK, and it is essential that rural communities are central to ongoing climate change conversations.
The Countryside Climate Network promotes the voice of the countryside in the climate change debate and already has over 20 local authority members. It will provide a space for collaboration and amplification of climate action in rural and suburban communities.
The network aims to support the whole nation in delivering the UK’s net zero carbon goal and will connect Cheshire East to other local authority leaders, national government and other national stakeholders.
Membership of the network is free and will enable members to:
- Share knowledge and best practice with each other:
- Collaborate on developing shared national policy asks, and:
- Support one another in developing local engagement that builds consent and support for ambitious climate action.
Councillor Sam Corcoran, leader of Cheshire East Council, said: “We are passionate about tackling the climate emergency and committed to reducing our own emissions – becoming carbon neutral by 2025.
“Rural communities are at the frontline of feeling the effects of climate change, with more extreme weather bringing longer droughts and wetter winters.
“Our carbon neutral action plan outlines our ambition to reduce our carbon emissions and to work with others in our borough to drive behaviour change. Being part of this network enables us to collaborate with other local authorities in rural areas to share best practice and initiatives, ensuring the voice of rural communities and their experience on climate action is listened to in Westminster.
“By continuing to all work together, we can make a real impact on the future sustainability of the borough.”
For many in our community it's been a difficult few months with COVID-19 changing circumstances in work for many people.
We would therefore like to make you aware of our current recruitment which can be found using the link below! There's so many different roles for the different experience and personalities around our communities.
Thank you for your time and have a great day!
PCSO Lizzie Jolley 22582
Burglary Alert - Radway Green and Surrounding Areas - Apoligies If You Do Not Live In This Area
I hope that you are well.
Unfortunately I am emailing to inform you that there has been a Burglary at a business in Radway Green. Following our recent alert message and patrols in this area, we are urging residents to be vigilant and to report anything suspicious or out of the ordinary to 101 or 999 always in an emergency.
You can also email myself on email@example.com to pass on intelligence, please include your full name, DOB and address so that I can submit this at the earliest opportunity.
Patrols have and will continue to be increased in this area and our neighbourhood watch communications will remain strong with residents in the community to keep up to date with the latest activity.
We hope that you have a great day.
Thank you for your time.
PCSO Lizzie Jolley 22582
Cheshire East Council and the Safeguarding Adults Board are supporting National Safeguarding Adults Week with a range of activities to make people aware of the different types of abuse that some people experience.
National Adult Safeguarding week – which starts on Monday 16 November – is an excellent opportunity to promote adult safeguarding and the work that organisations are doing to protect residents across Cheshire East.
Adult safeguarding means protecting an adult’s right to live in safety, free from abuse and neglect. The Care Act 2014, describes 10 forms of adult abuse – they are: physical, domestic, sexual, psychological, financial and material, modern slavery, neglect, discriminatory, organisational and self-neglect. Adults at risk of abuse are people over 18, who are unable to protect themselves due to age, or disability.
Research by Action on Elder Abuse suggests that as many as one in eleven older people in the UK are mistreated or neglected by those they trust the most. Abuse can happen anywhere – in a person's home, in the street, in a residential or nursing home, at a day centre or resource centre, in a hospital or indeed any place where an adult at risk might be.
The purpose of National Safeguarding Adults Week is to raise awareness about adult abuse, so that everyone can spot the signs and know how to report safeguarding concerns. The council is facilitating sessions to help people to improve their knowledge about issues such as exploitation, grooming, financial abuse and cyber crime and how to link with key local organisations such as My CWA, which is running a session for frontline colleagues working with families affected by domestic abuse.
There will be lots of other information available during the week, along with interactive sessions. The full calendar can be accessed at: http://www.stopadultabuse.org.uk/NSA2020
A recent case highlighted the importance of staying aware of scams and potential financial abuse. Retired accountant, Bill, considered himself to be financially knowledgeable. Unfortunately, this did not protect him from falling victim to a phishing scam which caused him considerable stress.
The fraudsters set up legitimate looking websites, sent texts and official looking emails in order to convince innocent victims to part with personal information. They sometimes telephone residents, pretending to be from the bank or an official company.
Bill received an email that he thought was official and from his pension company. It had the correct logos and read like an official mailing. The email asked him to click on a link and to confirm his banking details. Unfortunately, the fraudsters then took £2,000 from his account.
The bank and Bill’s carer worked together, and Bill was reimbursed with his money, but this experience caused considerable stress for Bill and affected his confidence. Cheshire East Safeguarding Adults Board and the council’s trading standards team are promoting ways to keep residents safe from such scams during National Safeguarding Adults Week.
Councillor Laura Jeuda, Cheshire East Council cabinet member for adult social care and health, said: “It is very sad to say this, but adult abuse is far more common than many of us think. The council sits on a dedicated safeguarding adults board, which is committed to raising the profile of adult safeguarding.
“If you know someone who is experiencing abuse, please report it. Together we can stamp out all forms of abuse.”
Geoffrey Appleton, Independent Chair of Cheshire East’s Safeguarding Adults Board, said: “The week is an excellent opportunity to raise awareness of safeguarding adult issues. The planned events throughout the week highlight how abuse can happen anywhere. It can be committed by anyone, and that abuse can take many forms.
“Whatever the circumstances, abuse is always wrong, and the week demonstrates how agencies in Cheshire East work together to support the person, to bring the abuse to an end”.
Throughout the week, the campaign and planned events will be highlighted by Cheshire East Council and its partner agencies on social media. Look for the hashtag #SafeguardingAdultsWeek.
Protect Your Passw0rd National Campaign Launched By Neighbourhood Watch
Neighbourhood Watch launches PROTECT YOUR Pa$$W0rD campaign with 3 quick and easy steps
As we spend more time at home and on our online devices, over one third (34%) of people say that they’re more concerned about cybercrime than physical crime and a startling 1 in 5 people are a victim of cybercrime!* You could be more at risk than you might think.
If strengthening your passwords is something you keep putting off, or you feel overwhelmed by the sea of online security information, you’re not alone.
As part of our Cyberhood Watch initiative, launched in 2019 in partnership with Avast, we have launched a PROTECT YOUR Pa$$W0Rd campaign that targets both the overwhelmed and complacent, providing everyone with 3 easy steps to be more secure online.
PROTECT YOUR Pa$$W0Rd in 3 easy steps
- Create a separate password for your email account
- Use 3 random words
- Turn on two-factor authentication (2FA)
But we won’t stop there! Whilst taking those 3 easy steps will go a long way to protecting yourself online, we want to protect not just you but your whole community! To do this, we are asking you to spread the word and help protect your family, friends, colleagues and neighbours by sharing these 3 easy steps with 3 others.
To share with others you can forward this email to at least 3 of your friends, share the information from our Password Protection page in your local newsletter, or share our campaign on your social media channels using our Protect your Pa$$W0Rd Campaign Pack,
More about the campaign
Our campaign will run on social media for 4 weeks from 9th November 2020. We are targeting both Neighbourhood Watch members and non-members alike with two different attitudes to online security.
For those that are unsure and overwhelmed by an abundance of advice, we want to cut though the noise and simplify the confusion, so they feel empowered to take action.
And for those that think ‘it won’t happen to me’ we want to shock them into action, so that they realise how prevalent the problem is, even amongst young people.
We have created social media animated and still graphics targeted to both those audiences, supported by further information detailing how and why to take each step on our dedicated Password Protection page.
Download our Protect your Pa$$W0Rd Campaign Pack to share the campaign across your networks using email, whatsapp, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook and in newsletters.
Why not go one step further and share our Protect your Pa$$W0Rd Press Release locally and don’t forget to let us know about any local press you are able to generate.
Visit our Protect your PA$$word campaign page to find out more.
*Perceptions of cybercrime in the UK report produced in partnership with Avast, surveyed over 14,000 Neighbourhood Watch members: https://press.avast.com/hubfs/media-materials/kits/Avast%20Cyberhood%20Watch/Avast_CyberHood_Watch_Report%20FINAL.pdf?hsLang=en
For more information contact Deborah Waller on firstname.lastname@example.org.
Sunday, 8 November 2020
Local car retailer wins big at the 13th annual Auto Trader Retailer Awards
Based in Crewe, Swansway Group has beaten competition from over 13,000 UK automotive retailers to receive the Business Initiative of the Year award at the 13th annual Auto Trader Retailer Awards. The Business Initiative of the Year award is presented to retailers that have successfully introduced a strategic business initiative and demonstrated its impact on the company and was judged by an independent panel of senior executives from Google and Rightmove, as well as global media agency The Specialist Works, and automotive recruitment specialists Ennis & Co.
Now in its 13th year, the Auto Trader Retailer Awards celebrate the very best in automotive retailing; those brands that are pushing the standard of all aspects of the industry, including digital excellence, and a commitment to exceptional customer service. In total, 18 award winners were announced across seven categories during the awards ceremony which, as a result of COVID-19, was completely digital for the first time in the Award’s history. It was hosted by Auto Trader CEO, Nathan Coe and Sales Director Rebecca Clark.
The winners of this year’s Auto Trader Retailer Awards were determined by a combination of in depth analysis of millions of data points, independent judging by a panel of experts, customer feedback and from the UK’s largest mystery shopping programme among auto retailers.
John Smyth, Swansway Group Director commented: “As we enter further into a digital age, our focus must continue to lie with our online presence, just as much as our physical presence in our showrooms. Our digital forecourt became of even more importance during the pandemic when people remained home and online. The Digital Marketing Apprenticeship programme began January 2019 as a completely new role to Swansway Group, recruited based on a new skill set of attention to detail, verbal and written skills. The role involves seeing a vehicle into stock, through to evaluating live adverts on classified sites with consideration to images, videos and description writing. Our increased efforts in merchandising our new and used cars in a professional, consistent manner with the support of our Digital Merchandising team has allowed us to adapt to the changing climate and maximise on increased online search as well as a greater demand to transact online.”
Commenting on this year’s winner, Auto Trader’s Chief Executive Officer, Nathan Coe, said: “The automotive industry is by nature, incredibly resilient, but we’ve been amazed at just how successful some retailers have been at adapting to the unprecedented challenges of COVID-19. We’ve seen examples of businesses who have truly gone the extra mile to respond to changing consumer behaviour and expectations, not just making the car buying process easier and more efficient, but safer too. We’ve also been hugely inspired by leadership teams that have taken equally bold steps to protect their colleagues and to instil rewarding and collaborative working cultures.
“In this climate we think it’s more important than ever to step back and to recognise true retailing excellence. And based on the most comprehensive judging process, there is no doubt that this year’s winners are incredibly deserving and truly represent the very best of our industry.”
John Smyth continued: “We are extremely proud of this award as it represents that our peers in the industry believe our approach to digital is the right one and we are excited to see how this will develop into the future.”
Cheshire East Council’s highways service have painted specially designed poppy markings across roads in Cheshire East to mark Remembrance Sunday.
The iconic poppies have been painted in honour of the service and sacrifice provided by our Armed Forces, veterans and their families. With many poignant events in Cheshire East for Remembrance Day being cancelled this year, the paintings provide a different way for residents to commemorate.
Markings have been installed across eleven locations in Cheshire East including Market Street in Nantwich and Fountain Square in Disley to remember those who gave their lives on behalf of their country.
Councillor Laura Crane, Cheshire East Council cabinet member for highways and waste, said: “With fewer activities taking place this year to mark Remembrance Sunday, we hope that these symbols will help to remind our residents of the lives lost in conflicts around the world and enable them to pay their respects. Thanks go to our Armed Forces Champion, Ashley Farrall for suggesting the initiative and to our highways team and their staff for making it happen”.
Councillor Ashley Farrall, Cheshire East Council Armed Forces Champion commented: “I am very proud of the highways team for volunteering their time to paint the poppies across the borough and I’m so grateful to them for being able to turn the idea into reality so quickly as well. It’s been an incredible effort.
“The poppies help us to reflect on the sacrifices made and shows our ongoing commitment to the armed forces community at this challenging time. The pandemic may not have allowed us to commemorate as we usually would, but we wanted to ensure we marked Remembrance Day in the best way possible”.
The poppies showcase one of many ways that the council supports the armed forces community. Cheshire East highways’ service provider, Ringway Jacobs, has recently been awarded an Armed Forces Covenant Gold Award for their commitment to supporting the armed forces community.
With the country in lockdown once more, the borough’s open spaces – many of them recognised with Green Flag Awards - will be even more of a place of calm refuge to residents and local visitors than ever before.
The Green Flag Award scheme, managed by environmental charity Keep Britain Tidy, under licence from the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government, recognises and rewards well-managed parks and green spaces, setting the benchmark standard for their management internationally.
Tegg’s Nose Country Park near Macclesfield and Brereton Heath Local Nature Reserve near Congleton are just two examples of parks that have been awarded Keep Britain Tidy Campaign Green Flag Awards. This is the sixteenth consecutive year that Brereton Heath Local Nature Reserve has earned this accolade, which is given in recognition of its high standard.
The awards given to both Tegg’s Nose Country Park and Brereton Heath Local Nature Reserve also acknowledge the efforts made towards conservation, including improvements made to natural habitats to attract wildlife. These awards have also been achieved because of the commitment of local volunteers, who give their time on a regular basis to work with the council’s ranger service.
The jewel in the crown of Cheshire East Council’s parks, Tatton Park, was one of the 2,000 parks in the UK to gain the internationally accredited mark.
Some of Cheshire East’s other parks to be recognised are Queens Park in Crewe, Congleton Park, Sandbach Park, Fountain Fields in Middlewich, Bollington Recreation Ground and Milton Park in Alsager. The Moor in Knutsford will be raising a Green Flag Award for these seven parks.
Along with Queens Park in Crewe and Congleton Park, Tatton Park also achieved the much-coveted Green Heritage Site Accreditation for management of its historic features. The accreditation is supported by Historic England.
Councillor Nick Mannion, Cheshire East Council’s cabinet member with responsibility for environment and regeneration, said: “The Green Flag Awards are the pinnacle for any colleagues working in our parks and open spaces to aim for as far as international recognition is concerned. For so many Cheshire East parks and countryside areas to be acknowledged in this way is recognition as well to all the wonderful colleagues working in them each and every day.
“In this really difficult period, people will see the tremendous value that time spent in our parks and countryside gives to both their mental and physical health and I hope that this will continue to be of benefit throughout lockdown.”
Commenting on Cheshire East’s success, Keep Britain Tidy Chief Executive Allison Ogden-Newton OBE said: “This year, more than ever, our parks and green spaces have been a lifeline and we know that millions of people have used them to relax, meet friends, exercise or simply escape for a short time.
“It is testament to the incredible dedication and hard work of staff and volunteers that, despite the challenges, Cheshire East, has once again achieved the highest international standards demanded by the Green Flag Award.”
Action Fraud is warning people selling items online to be on the lookout for criminals sending fake PayPal emails.
- Between January 2020 and September 2020, 21,349 crime reports were made to Action Fraud about fake PayPal emails.
- Victims reported losing a total of £7,891,077.44 during this time.
- Those targeted included people selling jewellery, furniture and electronics via online marketplaces.
- Reports of fake PayPal emails to Action Fraud made up a third of all reports of online shopping and auction fraud during this period.
How does it happen?
Criminals have been targeting people selling items online, by sending them emails purporting to be from PayPal. The emails trick victims into believing they have received payment for the items they’re selling on the platform.
Typically, after receiving these emails, victims will ship the item to the criminal. This leaves them at a further disadvantage having not received any payment for the item and also no longer being in possession of it.
How can you protect yourself?
- Sellers beware: If you’re selling items on an online marketplace, be aware of the warning signs that your buyer is a scammer. Scammers may have negative feedback history, or may have recently set up a new account to avoid getting poor feedback. Don’t be persuaded into sending anything until you can verify you’ve received the payment.
- Scam messages: Don’t click on the links or attachments in suspicious emails, and never respond to messages that ask for your personal or financial details.
- How to spot the difference: A PayPal email will address you by your first and last name, or your business name, and will never ask you for your full password, bank account, or credit card details in a message.
If you think you’ve been a victim of fraud, report it to Action Fraud online at www.actionfraud.police.uk or by calling 0300 123 2040.
Message Sent By
Action Fraud (Action Fraud, Administrator, National)
The global pandemic is not preventing Cheshire East Council from honouring those that gave their lives in serving their country, although this year’s Remembrance Sunday commemoration will be a little different.
With traditional Remembrance Sunday events being severely limited this year, the council has prepared a short virtual service for people to view.
The virtual service tries to emulate as closely as possible how a Remembrance Sunday commemoration would take place under more normal circumstances. Viewers will see a wreath being laid by Cheshire East Mayor Barry Burkhill, will hear a reading from the mayor’s chaplain Rev Ralph Kemp and a recital of the Act of Remembrance.
Councillor Jill Rhodes, Cheshire East Council cabinet member for public health and corporate services, said: “I am very pleased that we have been able to put on a service to honour our fallen servicemen and women. It is absolutely right that we hold an event in spite of the challenges that we face in doing so.
Councillor Ashley Farrall, Cheshire East Council Armed Forces champion “I would encourage everyone to not only watch our virtual service but to carry out their own act of remembrance safely in their own homes.
“These are very testing times but for all that it is true to say this, it is very important that we honour those who gave their lives in order that we can enjoy the freedoms we have now. We shall remember them.”
This year’s virtual service is available to view on the council’s YouTube channel by going to https://youtu.be/3283oK7B4-g
As we all prepare to go into a national lockdown tomorrow (5 November), Cheshire East Council is advising residents of the importance of looking after their mental health during this difficult time.
The ongoing Covid-19 pandemic is proving to be a longer-term challenge than many of us first imagined back in March, when we all experienced our first national lockdown. There has been growing concern about the pressures that the virus will have during the winter months and due to rising infection rates, these pressures and concerns have been realised as we all face lockdown restrictions once again.
A winter lockdown will feel very different due to dark nights and bad weather, and many people may be feeling burned-out and tired with the ongoing restrictions. It’s more important than ever to look after your mental health during what is set to be a challenging month for many people and their families.
Dr Matt Tyrer, Director of Public Health for Cheshire East Council said: “Winter is the time of year that many of us experience Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) – this is a type of depression that comes and goes in a seasonal pattern. Symptoms can include a persistent low mood, irritability, feelings of despair and worthlessness and lacking energy.
“This winter has the added challenge of Covid-19 restrictions which for many people, may add to experiences of SAD or result in many people experiencing this winter depression for the first time.
“2020 has taught us all that mental health is so important and has enabled many people to reach out to others whichever way they have been affected by the pandemic – such as losing a loved one, losing their job, financial concerns and feelings of loneliness and isolation.
“We all must continue to speak to others and seek help from specialist organisations if we need to. There are a range of support groups and organisations, which will be open and running throughout the national lockdown. For details, visit: https://www.cheshireeast.gov.uk/livewell/health-matters/health-conditions/mental-health/mental-health.aspx.”
Councillor Jill Rhodes, Cheshire East Council cabinet member for public health and corporates services, said: “Now more than ever we must pull together as a community to take care of ourselves and each other.”
Cheshire East Council appointed two mental health champions, Councillor Sally Handley and Councillor Jonathan Parry in April this year, to help combat the distress and anxiety many people are feeling during this uncertain time.
Councillor Sally Handley said: “We know many residents were enjoying being able to get back to socialising with friends following the earlier relaxation in measures around pubs and restaurants, and to get back some sense of normality that the countrywide lockdown took away. Sadly, this has now been reversed and we must adhere to the restrictions we had in place earlier in the year.”
Councillor Jonathan Parry said: “From Thursday 5 November we all must stay indoors, work from home where possible, not mix with another household apart from a support bubble and only shop for essentials such as food and medicines.
“It’s important that we all take care of our mental wellbeing during this time and check-in on friends and relatives, who may need our support.”
Ideas to protect and support mental health are:
● Have a routine and set short-term goals – plan regular calls/video calls with friends and relatives and make time for regular breaks if working from home;
● Plan leisure time and exercise – wrap up warm and head outside for a winter walk, discover online exercise classes, compile a reading list and set yourself a challenge, plan themed movie nights in and learn a new skill or rediscover an old one such as baking;
● Look at your sleeping habits – sleep is essential for our mental health, so keep track of how many hours sleep you get and practice good habits before bedtime to help you relax and unwind such as having a hot bath and a warm milky drink;
● Look at your eating habits – dark winter nights call for comfort food but over excessing can leave you feeling sluggish and can affect your mental health. Enjoy a balanced diet packed with plenty of energy and mood boosting foods such as fruit and foods rich in vitamin C and;
● Reach out for help as early as possible – seek help with things like debt, finances or practical support with shopping for food or medicines. Worrying about these will have a negative affect on your mental health.
Children and young people have returned to nursery, school and college following half term, however lockdown will be equally hard for some. If any children or young people are feeling low, they are urged to speak to their parents, carers, teacher or support worker and there are also a whole host of ways that the council can support them over the next few weeks.
Places to access help are also available on the children’s pages on the council’s live well section of their website, https://www.cheshireeast.gov.uk/livewell/livewell.aspx
For further help and advice on mental wellbeing, including information on local support services, visit: https://www.cheshireeast.gov.uk/livewell/health-matters/health-conditions/mental-health/mental-health.aspx
For details on how Cheshire East Council can help with money worries or for information on debt charities such as the National Debt Line and Age UK, visit: https://www.cheshireeast.gov.uk/housing/housing_options/housing_options_advice/money_matters.aspx
If you or someone you know need support from our People Helping People scheme, please visit: https://www.cheshireeast.gov.uk/council_and_democracy/council_information/coronavirus/cheshire-east-people-helping-people.aspx
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.
For more advice and information follow the council’s social media pages, visit their Facebook page at: www.facebook.com/cheshireeastcouncil and Twitter at: @CheshireEast
Firefighters Urge People Not To Light Bonfires In Their Gardens
Our firefighters are urging people to think twice before they light a bonfire or have a firework display in their garden this year.
Starting any fire can be extremely dangerous and may lead to disastrous consequences so we are encouraging people to consider safer options to celebrate Bonfire Night that doesn’t involve flames or fireworks.
Any fire can quickly get out of hand and spread to fences, sheds and properties. It can also cause harm and endanger life.
We really want you to have fun this Bonfire Night but to do so safely, within the law and bearing in mind the current situation with the pandemic.
We have provided this advice for anyone considering using fireworks in a bid to help keep everyone as safe as possible:
- Stand well back
- Keep pets indoors
- Keep fireworks in a closed box
- Only buy fireworks that are CE marked
- Light at arm's length, using a taper
- Follow the instructions on each firework
- Never give sparklers to a child under five
- Don't drink alcohol if setting off fireworks
- Always supervise children around fireworks
- Light sparklers one at a time and wear gloves
- Never put fireworks in your pocket or throw them
- Never go near a firework that has been lit - even if it hasn't gone off it could still explode
- Pour water on the embers before leaving
This year we need to celebrate a little differently and, now more than ever, we need to pull together to help slow the spread of the virus.
For more information about bonfire and firework safety please visit the website www.cheshirefire.gov.uk
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