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ANNUAL AUDIT DATE. Arranged for 1st July 2019.
YOXALL RIVERSIDE REGENERATION.
Yoxall Parish Council is undertaking a major environmental project to regenerate Goose Green and Swarbourn Meadow. The project is being fronted by Parish Councillor Diana Muir. The Parish Council owns and manages Goose Green and Swarbourn Meadow for villagers to enjoy.
The aim is to improve these areas for the village and provide a more user friendly facility that all local people may enjoy, particularly the elderly and very young.
Goose Green in particular is being greatly enhanced as an area of general recreation and well-being for all ages. Swarbourn Meadow is an area that requires less investment as it is used quite widely by dog walkers and has a degree of usage as an open space in the village.
St. Peters School will also benefit as we plan to have a dedicated Forest School area near the centre of Goose Green. Yoxall Guides and Scouts have also welcomed the opportunity to use the Green once more.
The National Forest, Staffordshire Wildlife Trust and The Woodland Trust have all given support to the project.
- A drainage scheme to overcome the water-logging has already been undertaken. This is a significant and necessary first step in its development as a more usable area.
- a well constructed path will be laid around the area with places to sit, relax and enjoy the surroundings. It will be wheelchair and pushchair friendly.
- tree/shrub planting and provision of new benches. A community orchard to encourage more wild life.
- improved screening for the adjacent houses and to encourage more biodiversity.
- provision of an outdoor education area for young people to enjoy learning about their environment.
There are probably many villagers who remember the Country Festivals and Barn Dances that used to take place on Goose Green and it would be great to bring some life back to this area which is in heart of the community.
The pathway was due to be installed be in May, but may now have to be delayed due to existing commitments of the contractor. Funding for the pathway (£15.5k) has been virtually covered by grants.
The Woodland Trust has delivered 300 trees which were planted with the help of local volunteers. All are doing well and the area around the trees will be trimmed shortly.
We have been encouraged by many local villagers who have offered advice, support and encouragement. Yoxall Camera Club are recording the various stages of the work, so we hope to publish some visual updates in the coming months.
We are delighted with the progress made to date with this ambitious project. Diana is looking for local residents with the necessary skills and availability to help her in the coming months. Diana’s contact details can be found under the section `”Your Council” of the website.
£7.5k grant from the Neighbourhood Fund.
European (ERDF) grant £20k. After receiving approval of our application, 6 weeks later the decision was reversed which has caused a major headache. Reason given was that the application did not provide sufficient ecological benefits. The funds are to be used to develop a nature reserve with a range of grasses and shrubs introduced. After consulting the ecologist that the P.C. employed (a requirement of the grant provider), the application will be re-submitted to confirm that it meets ERDF’s requirements.
In addition, applications for substantial funding are to be made to Awards for All and Veola Trust.
Staffordshire Wildlife Trust has agreed in principle to offer appropriate guidance and it will take several years to develop the site.
As soon as we receive decisions about further funding applications submitted recently, the project will go forward at a pace.
AUTOMATIC COMPENSATION FOR BROADBAND USERS GOES LIVE.
Five broadband and landline providers – BT, Sky, TalkTalk, Virgin Media and Zen – who together serve around 90% of landline and broadband customers in the UK, will now automatically compensate customers when services do not work.
If an engineer does not arrive on schedule or cancels within 24 hours, the compensation will be £25. If a service stops working and is not fully fixed after two working days, customers will be entitled to £8 a day in compensation. There will also be £5 a day offered for new services not starting on time.
Two other providers – Hyperoptic and Vodafone will begin automatic compensation later this year, while EE plans to start paying compensation automatically in 2020. Plusnet have also committed to the scheme but has not yet provided a timescale.
Please visit the Ofcom website for further details on the automatic compensation scheme.
A New allocation of almost £9 million to help repair Potholes and other road work in Staffordshire
On National Pothole Day, £8,899,000 was allocated to Staffordshire County Council (Stoke on Trent receives an additional £1,055,00) to improve the condition of roads.
Michael Fabricant says “With 15 January being National Pothole Day, I am delighted that Staffordshire will be receiving this funding boost of £8,899.000 to improve roads and eliminate potholes.
“This additional new funding represents a significant boost in road maintenance and is on top of £950 million we already provided to councils across the country this year for local highways maintenance. The Chancellor, Philip Hammond, announced at the Budget that a £420 million fund will be created to tackle potholes and other roadworks. This will be used to repair potholes, keep local bridges and structures open and safe, and help with other highways works that may be needed.
“With another Beast from the East being forecast for February, I hope this money can be used not only to repair existing potholes, but also to repair swiftly any new ones that will inevitably form over the winter.”
DEMENTIA CARERS’ CLUB FOR YOXALL – has now been formally recognised as a Dementia Friendly Community.
- Two Dementia Champions have been trained to deliver one hour information sessions to interested clubs and other organisations on request. Those receiving the guidance can then become identified as Dementia Friends.
- Another progression is the establishment of a Dementia Carers’ Club. This is aimed at spouses and family members caring for those with a Dementia within the village, and aims to bring them together on a friendly, informal and confidential basis to share knowledge, understanding and experiences, to provide mutual help, and to seek professional guidance when needed. This is being done in conjunction with our Yoxall Surgery which offers further information through their Carer’s Pack and the names of those to contact.
- Implementation of the Community Action Plan continues.
- Monthly steering group meetings held.
- For information, contact Warren Bradley on 01543 473588.
Yoxall village has a Neighbourhood Watch scheme in place. It is managed online using Staffordshire Smart Alert to provide improved communications between the police and the public. Members of the Yoxall group will receive messages as and when news alerts are issued. To become a member of the scheme, visit the staffordshiresmartalert.uk.
- Going on holiday, don’t facebook your holiday pics to friends. Make sure your home looks occupied to deter would-be thieves. Consider using timing switches for a radio and lights in different room when it goes dark. Ideally, ask a trusted neighbour to keep an eye on your property. Make arrangements for safe storage of valuables, computers etc. AND, before you depart, make sure your shed/garage are locked. DON’T update Facebook and Twitter to say that you are away.
- Residents are reminded to be on their guard following reports of bogus officials targeting the elderly and vulnerable across the County. This can include doorstep crime claiming to come from the council, waterboard or other organisations. Culprits often work in pairs. One keep you talking at the front door whilst the other tries to access the back door or window. The Staffordshire Police force is doing all it can to catch those responsible, however there are actions which villagers can take to combat the culprits. That includes:
- Keeping your house secure and the door chain on when answering the door.
- Ensure windows are locked at all times and keys removed.
- Don’t allow unsolicited callers into your home. Ask for a number you can use to verify their identity.
- Never agree to have work done on your property by a stranger.
- Never accept an offer from a stranger to drive you to a cash point.
- If a call is aggressive, phone 999.
We have also heard of strangers or fraudsters cold-calling victims, falsely stating that they are from a well known UK communication service provider, or stating that they are from Telephone Preference Service. The callers ask victims to confirm/provide bank account details, informing them that there is a one-off charge for the service. Victims instead see monthly debts deducted from their accounts, which they have not authorised.
Never give away personal information to organisations or people before verifying their credentials. Destroy and preferably shred receipts with your card details on them. Make sure that your computer has up-to-date software installed.
Staffs Smart Alert
Smart Alert is hosted by the Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) and is one way you can receive community safety information and engage with local policing. The App will deliver personalised information to your Mobile Device about Crime, Public Appeals, Public Events and lots of other great advice and tips.
For more information on the Staffs Smart Alert App please visit www.staffordshiresmartalert.uk or search for “Staffs Smart Alert” in Google Play or the App Store.
My Staffs App.
Combines a host of services to help you. For example, you can access services from Police, Fire, Ambulance and your Local Council. Examples of the Services you can access are Register Births, Report Abandoned Vehicles, Fly Tipping, School Closures, Roadworks, Council Tax & Benefits and a lot more.
More information can be found at www.staffordshire.gov.uk/mystaffs-app/mystaffs-app or to Download the App visit either the App Store or Google Play and search for “My Staffs”