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Young people in Cornwall have the chance to learn how to help others in an emergency as the Duke of Cornwall Community Safety Award reopens for applications.
The ground-breaking scheme was first launched in Cornwall after the response to significant flooding and aims to educate and train young people to assist before, during and after a crisis.
The scheme was created in 2011 to give young people in the UK an opportunity to learn what to do in an emergency situation, such as severe weather.
The award scheme has since grown and is now recognised both nationally and internationally, with the scheme being used as far afield as Bangladesh.
Cornwall Council is relaunching the award with a brand new website and leaders resources to help anyone that would like to take part in the award to complete the three different levels.
The award scheme is open to all young people between the ages of 5 and 18 and uses a 3 tier system, where awards are earned at various ages.
The scheme provides encouragement by awarding certificates and badges at each level. The handbook, training material and support available on the website will allow anyone to gather the awareness and skills to prepare themselves, their family, community and neighbourhood for dealing with an emergency situation, and to respond appropriately.
Everyone participating in the Award scheme is encouraged to engage with their local community Police, Fire or other relevant emergency service, which are invariably willing to provide relevant support and information. Other organisations such as the Environment Agency and Local Authorities also provide information, support and encouragement.
Simon Mould, Head of Community Safety & Localism at Cornwall Council, said: “The Community Safety Award is a fantastic scheme which engages our younger members of our communities to be involved in building resilience in their local areas whilst achieving many personal skills, knowledge and confidence.
"We look forward to working with our partner emergency service responders in supporting this valuable scheme.”
For more information about the award visit: www.communitysafetyaward.org
Follow the award on Facebook – www.facebook.com/communitysafetyaward
Follow the award on Twitter – www.twitter.com/DofC_CSAward
Residents are to benefit from greener taxis in Cornwall following a £90,000 cash injection to Cornwall Council for new electric vehicle chargepoints.
The Office for Low Emission Vehicles (OLEV) has made the award to support ultra-low emission taxis across the county.
Announced by the Future of Mobility Minister Jesse Norman, the funding will be used to install five, fast and rapid electric vehicle chargepoints in Cornwall.
Taxis which are electric or plug-in hybrid vehicles will be able to use the charging points which will be installed next year.
Their locations will be announced by Cornwall Council later this year.
The scheme is part of a £6 million plan for 346 electric chargepoints across the UK in the Government’s bid for a zero emission future.
Cornwall has nine Air Quality Management Areas (AQMA) and the Council is working to reduce emissions from vehicles as a key part of improving air quality in towns and villages.
Cornwall Councillor Sue James, Portfolio Holder for Environment and Public Protection, said: “Cornwall Council is committed to making Cornwall greener and healthier and as part of our Clean Air for Cornwall Strategy we have a range of air quality projects and policies to help improve air quality across the county.
“Assisting taxis to be greener and reduce their emissions is just one of the projects we are bringing forward to improve air quality.”
Cornwall Councillor Edwina Hannaford, Portfolio Holder for Neighbourhoods, said: “I welcome this funding from OLEV. This is a great opportunity for taxi drivers in Cornwall who want to reduce their emissions.
“We hope to have the chargepoints installed within the next year and will provide further details on their locations as soon as possible.”
The electric chargepoints scheme was open to bids by local authorities across the UK. Funding was awarded through a competitive process in which bids were evaluated against a published set of criteria.
Rapid charging (43/50kW) enables charging in 20-30 minutes for onward travel and fast charging (22kW) will enable day-to-day charging (up to about four hours) for electric vehicles or charging for plug-in hybrids.
Last month Cornwall Council passed an emergency climate change motion and called on Westminster to provide the powers and resources necessary to achieve the target for Cornwall to become carbon neutral by 2030.
Alongside work already underway to bring back nature, reduce traffic congestion, improve public transport, reduce waste and use renewable energy sources, this new project is further evidence of the Council’s ongoing commitment to reducing CO2 emissions and tackling climate change.
Jesse Norman, Future of Mobility Minister, said: “The Government wants all new cars and vans to be effectively zero emission by 2040. Getting the right infrastructure and investment in place is a crucial part of this.”
Richard Harrington, Automotive Minister, said: “The UK has led the world in cutting emissions while maintaining growth in our economy.
“These new charge points for greener taxis will help accelerate a cleaner environment for people across the UK. This will also point the way for a better, healthier future for us all as part of the Government’s modern Industrial Strategy which builds on the government’s long-standing partnership with the UK automotive sector.”
Under the Environment Act 1995 Cornwall Council is required to monitor air quality in the county against the Air Quality Objectives. If air pollution is higher than these national objectives, the Council has to designate an Air Quality Management Area (AQMA) and produce an Action Plan to improve air quality in the area.
Cornwall Council licences around 1,200 taxis (private hire and hackney carriage).
Story posted 18 February 2019
Cornwall Council’s Cabinet this week backed ambitious plans to acquire Torpoint Police Station as part of a £495,000 town regeneration scheme.
The police station forms part of the plan developed by Torpoint Town Council and Cornwall Council to deliver 55 one and two-bedroomed apartments, a new library, and retained space for police offices.
If approved by full council, the plans will deliver 3,000m2 of commercial and community space and c.500m2 of improved public area and the police station will be acquired by the end of the financial year.
Cllr Bob Egerton, Portfolio Holder for Planning and Economy, said: “This is an important acquisition on behalf of the community of Torpoint. It enables us to secure a key site necessary to enable delivery of the neighbourhood plan and a wider regeneration scheme that will bring jobs and improve the local economy for the benefit of residents.
“We will now be progressing further work on bringing the development forward through further design, cost appraisals and ultimately through a planning application.”
Cllr Lambert Keise, Mayor of Torpoint said: “I am delighted to hear Cornwall Council’s Cabinet decision to acquire the police station at the lower end of Fore Street. The Town Council has been working with Cornwall Council on the scheme to develop accommodation, a new Library, as well as space for the police at this site.
Securing ownership of this site, accompanied by others already under Cornwall Council will increase the likelihood of success of a coordinated development that delivers this aspect of the Vision for Torpoint, adopted by the Town Council in April 2016.
“The redevelopment of this site will benefit the community of Torpoint, and will deliver a smart first impression of the town, all consistent with the emerging Neighbourhood plan.”
Posted on 15 February 2019
Cornwall Council’s Anti-Social Behaviour Team in partnership with Devon & Cornwall Police, have successfully taken action on behalf of local residents to close down two properties in Camborne and Newquay, following recent closures in Penzance and St Ives.
The orders are part of a continued crack down on anti-social behaviour and a demonstration of the authority’s commitment to create safer communities.
The first closure granted was for a house in William Street in Camborne which has been described as a central location for both the use and dealing of drugs. Complaints included large groups of people at the property, threatening behaviour with loud arguments and disturbances.
Drug users and dealers frequented the property at all hours of the day and night leaving surrounding residents in fear for their safety. On one occasion, the Cornwall Fire and Rescue Service were called to attend an incident at the address but Officers were met with threats of violence preventing them from accessing the property.
Dorian Thomas from Cornwall Council’s Anti-Social Behaviour Team said: “Due to the ongoing behaviours of the tenant and associates, the property has become a catalyst for ongoing community tensions caused by visitors to the address. The escalation of anti-Social behaviour, misuse of alcohol & drugs and crimes from the address has caused great concern for those living around the property.
“Local residents have been afraid to come forward in fear of retribution, intimidation and threats from the visitors. The closure order is essential for the community to return to a normal quality of life.”
PC Geoff Streatfield from Camborne Police added: “I am pleased to say that Cornwall Council and Devon and Cornwall Police have again been successful in the use of current legislation and have obtained another premises closure. The place in question has been the centre of continued and prolonged disturbance and anti-social behaviour which has had an adverse and prolonged effect on the local community.
“This closure, along with others that have being obtained shows that all agencies and the Courts are taking these reports seriously. I must stress though that these measures are only implemented as a last resort and after all other attempts at positive interventions have been exhausted with failure of the tenant to engage.”
The second closure was granted for a property in Hawke Close, Newquay. The closure order was applied for as the tenant continued to ignore previous warnings to stop people using his address for the purpose of taking and dealing drugs leading to persistent and ongoing disorder. The successful application of the Closure Order will safeguard the local residents by providing a much needed respite.
Inspector Dave Meredith from Devon and Cornwall Police said: “I am delighted at the court’s decision to issue a full closure order on these premises. This legislation is not used lightly, and the case was only taken to court due to compelling evidence of drug misuse and anti-social behaviour linked to the address. Class A drug supply and use will always be dealt with robustly by Newquay police.
“The issue of this full closure order reflects the outstanding partnership work that has taken place between the police, Cornwall Council, LiveWest Housing and local residents. Hawke Close, Crantock Street and the surrounding area are a lot safer now this property has been closed. We will continue to target drug dealers and premises involved in drug misuse, and work with our community to make Newquay a safer place for all.”
Residents are encouraged to report anti-social behaviour to the police by using the 101 number or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
Posted on 14 February
Penzance is to get a dedicated anti-social behaviour caseworker for the first time as part of Cornwall Council and Penzance Town Council’s ongoing bid to tackle problems in the town.
At a meeting this week (February 11) town councillors agreed to jointly fund the 12-month pilot with Cornwall Council who will manage the case worker.
The case worker will be responsible for tackling persistent anti-social behaviour offenders in West Penwith and be based at the new Safer Penzance town centre hub set to open in Causeway Head in the spring.
Currently the town is covered by an anti-social behaviour case worker whose geographical area spans from Land’s End to Camborne but this new post will be focused solely on West Penwith.
The dedicated caseworker will focus on gathering evidence and building cases to take to court for enforcement orders such as the Criminal Behaviour Order which prohibits offenders from anti-social behaviour.
The caseworker will also carry out additional patrols in the town centre and deliver more early intervention and prevention work enabling them to refer offenders to local support services.
Latest reports from the Safer Cornwall partnership - made up of Cornwall Council, Devon and Cornwall Police and other partners - show that 1,046 anti-social behaviour incidents in Penzance and its immediate surroundings were reported to the police over the last 12 months.
Compared with other large, Cornish towns, Penzance has the highest rate of reported anti-social behaviour at 53.4 incidents per 1,000 population, compared with an average of 33.7 across the other large towns, and 22.3 for Cornwall overall.
Cornwall Council has welcomed the plan for new anti-social behaviour case worker who is due to be appointed within two months.
Sue James, Cornwall Council’s cabinet member for neighbourhoods, said: “We have already found with our team of anti-social behaviour case workers in towns across Cornwall that they play a key role in preventing and tackling anti-social behaviour.
“Having a dedicated case worker focused solely on Penzance will be instrumental in reducing the town’s anti-social behaviour and will help to improve the quality of life for everyone.”
Between September and November 2018 Devon and Cornwall Police’s Neighbourhood Team in Penzance conducted 87 high-visibility patrols days and made seven arrests for public order offences.
Safer Penzance continues to encourage people to report all incidents and concerns as they occur as it gives the police the opportunity to respond and deal with the incidents.
In addition these reports are used as evidence to support action and prosecution against those causing ASB problems in the town.
To report street drinking and ASB please ensure that all incidents are reported to, and logged with, the police by calling 101 (non-emergency) or emailing email@example.com or ring 999 if you have serious immediate concerns.
Posted on 14 February
Cornwall will add its voice to major cities and other local authorities today to tackle the growing national air quality crisis and improve public health.
Cornwall Council Leader Adam Paynter was invited to attend the National Clean Air Summit in London, joining the Mayor of London Sadiq Khan, Environment Secretary Michael Gove and Health Secretary Matthew Hancock, UK100 and UNICEF UK at the event.
The summit aims to build consensus on the actions and powers that are needed to tackle the national air pollution crisis, as attendees set out their priorities for government.
This includes highlighting what’s needed in the government’s new Environment Bill, making the case for a new national vehicle fleet renewal scheme and ensuring the funding local and regional authorities need is provided.
Councillor Paynter said “With air pollution at national health crisis levels in some parts of the UK, it is critical to join together with other regions to put pressure on Government to act swiftly and on a national scale.
“Air pollution affects Cornwall like the rest of the UK. While we have local action plans in place to manage air quality and we are investing in public transport and road improvements to reduce congestion and improve air quality, devolving more powers to local authorities to take local action is critical to making real step changes and delivering on our commitment to a healthy Cornwall,” he said.
“Pushing for national action to provide better incentives for drivers, especially those on low incomes, to choose less polluting vehicles when they change their car could really help reduce emissions and improve air quality – especially in Cornwall where vehicles are on average about ten years old.
“In Cornwall we have nine Air Quality Management Areas where traffic related air pollution is higher than the government’s recommended action level. As a Council we’re tackling air pollution across Cornwall by providing new walking and cycling opportunities, working with partners to introduce cleaner buses, trialling new technology to reduce emissions from our own vehicle fleet, and much more, but more local powers backed by national legislation will make an even greater impact in helping to ensure a healthy Cornwall.”
Councillor Paynter said attending the summit was also part of Cornwall’s pledge to residents to do more to tackle climate change, following Council passing an emergency climate change motion last month. The motion included calling on Westminster to provide the powers and resources necessary to achieve the target for Cornwall to become carbon neutral by 2030.
What can residents do to help?
In the UK over 600 Air Quality Management Areas (AQMAs) have been declared in areas with poor air quality. All of the AQMAs have higher levels of nitrogen dioxide gas than they should, and vehicles are the main source of nitrogen dioxide.
Every time we make a choice about how to travel what we’re doing makes a difference to the amount of air pollution in Cornwall.
For example, if you’re waiting in traffic queues and are stationary for a minute or more, switch off your engine. In Cornwall around 40% of nitrogen dioxide (NO2) pollution is caused by private diesel cars, and adjacent to a busy road around 80% of air pollution is caused by traffic. If drivers switch off their engines when their cars are stopped for one minute or more, pollution can be reduced by 20-30%.
Walk, cycle, take the bus or train, use the park and ride, or look at options like car sharing or joining a car club. Even sharing tips and ideas for saving fuel, and therefore money, with friends and family, will have the benefit of improving air quality.
Posted 14 February 2019
A recognition of the importance to residents and businesses of Cornish culture, heritage and the arts has been reinforced today as major investors in culture sign a commitment to work closely together to promote Cornwall’s distinct identity.
Representatives from Cornwall Council, Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP), Arts Council England, The National Lottery Heritage Fund and Historic England have today signed a historic Memorandum of Understanding.
The first of its kind in the UK, it is a commitment that all will work together so that Cornwall Council, which has through its Culture Investment Board so far secured over £110 million of investment into Cornwall’s culture and heritage, can continue, with partners, to support and promote Cornwall’s cultural distinctiveness.
Support for projects like
- The Man Engine, striding the country to celebrate Cornwall’s mining heritage;
- Kresen Kernow bringing together the world’s largest collection of records, books, maps, plans and photographs related to Cornwall and protecting them for future generations;
- FEAST, which commissions projects to reach all communities in market and coastal towns, rural villages and hamlets alike and “Make great art happen across Cornwall”;
- Regeneration and relaunch of arts venues like the Hall for Cornwall and Tate St Ives.
As part of the Devolution Deal Cornwall Council secured in 2015, the Council made a commitment to protect Cornwall’s culture and heritage through the formation of the Heritage Kernow Executive Board. Work now continues through New Frontiers to ensure our culture distinctiveness is recognised, strengthened and celebrated through the creation of a Cornish public service broadcaster and a request for funding to promote and develop our language and cultural assets.
Bob Egerton, Cornwall Council cabinet portfolio holder for economy and planning said: “Cornwall’s culture, arts and heritage is important to many residents as they help give us a real sense of place and community. They support our economy and make us distinctive, not just in the UK but globally.”
By signing the Memorandum of Understanding, each partner is committing to work together to continue to encourage and supportCornwall’s arts and cultural economy and develop new, sustainable ways to support the growth of our creative industries.
Examples include the £2m LEP funded business hub as part of the new Hall for Cornwall to act as a hotbed for creative and digital organisations and businesses, and Krowji Phase 2 in Redruth, which will see the construction of new purpose built workspace to complement Krowji, the largest creative cluster west of Bristol with tenants from right across the creative sector.
Bob Egerton adds: “We need to build on the government’s recognition of national minority status for the Cornish, the Cornish language and Cornish cultural distinctiveness so that we can encourage pride and confidence in communities across Cornwall.
“There is already an excellent relationship that has been built up through the Council’s Culture Investment Board with Arts Council England, The National Lottery Heritage Fund and Historic England and the CIOS LEP who have made ‘creativity’ one their 10 Opportunities pitch to Government and business. By working more collaboratively, we can harness our collective resources to make a difference and deliver for the residents of Cornwall.”
Darren Henley, CEO of Arts Council England said: “Cornwall has a very special cultural identity, as well as an abundance of cultural riches. It’s an important place for us at Arts Council England and we’re proud of our track record of investment and partnership working in the county. This shared commitment to the importance and value of culture and creativity will help us continue to make a major contribution to the placemaking agenda in Cornwall’s towns and rural communities.”
Ros Kerslake, CEO of The National Lottery Heritage Fund said: “Heritage and Culture is at the heart of identity and what makes a place special. From our spectacular coastline and countryside, to our industrial heritage, archives and museums, our heritage tells an important story and has a huge impact on people and the economy. Thanks to National Lottery players, we are incredibly proud to have invested over £115 million in more than 700 projects across Cornwall, a significant sum, and one that reflects Cornwall’s important heritage as well as the pride that Cornish people rightly feel in their history and heritage. We have worked closely with our partners in Cornwall over many years, collaborating to ensure investment is targeted in the right place and works hard for the people of Cornwall, and we look forward to working even more closely together in the future, recognising the critical role heritage and culture has to play in Cornwall’s future.”
Glenn Caplin, Chief Executive of the Cornwall & Isles of Scilly LEP said: ““Our creative sector is a huge cultural and economic asset that is growing at twice the rate of the UK economy. From international exports like Kneehigh theatre and venues like The Exchange in Newlyn, to cutting edge creative tech businesses like Triangular Pixels, named as BAFTA Breakthrough Brits, and Creative England Top 50 company Engine House Media, we have a rich and diverse creative economy rooted in a distinctive sense of place. We warmly welcome this partnership and the signal it sends about the value we place on culture and creativity.”
Duncan Wilson, Chief Executive of Historic England said: “Cornwall’s historic environment inspires passion, from distinctive buildings such as Landewednack Windmill, The Lizard,which came off our Heritage at Risk Register in 2016 to Harvey’s Foundry at Hayle, it makes communities proud and brings visitors from around the world. This precious heritage enriches lives, brings people together and supports growth and prosperity. We are proud to have worked with partners across Cornwall for many years to help make this happen. We are delighted to commit our skills and resources to this important partnership for Cornwall.”
Following the official signing of the Memorandum of Understanding at the Hall For Cornwall, partners were taken on a tour of the building by HFC’s Chief Executive and Creative Director Julien Boast. The theatre is currently closed for a major transformation project and Julien Boast welcomed the opportunity to outline the Hall’s exciting plans for the future. “We want to build for Cornwall’s cultural future by providing a new type of theatre that is open to all and where all sorts of people can come together to enjoy themselves. This is a very exciting time for HFC and for Cornwall and we are delighted to have the opportunity to host this historic event”.
Story posted 13 February 2019
Six hundred new homes and jobs could transform Hayle Harbour under a plan and funding approved by Cornwall Council’s Cabinet today (13 February).
Cornwall Council has developed the plan with the current land owners Sennybridge Hayle Ltd (SHL), following agreement from Cabinet in 2017 for the council to enter into negotiations to secure the future of the area.
Cabinet has today recommended to full Council that £15.760m is made available. This includes securing from Homes England a grant of £5.65m, to bring forward the building of roads and infrastructure to unlock the development of the Hilltop and Riviere Fields sites.
The plan is for the Council to buy the land at Riviere Fields to bring forward the development of quality new homes including new affordable homes for local people.
The Hilltop site and Quayside sites will, subject to necessary planning approvals, be developed by the private sector.
Cornwall Council’s portfolio holder for homes, Andrew Mitchell, said the plans will kick start the long awaited development, securing a new chapter and future for the town of Hayle.
Cllr Mitchell said: “Hayle is a key growth area and we expect redevelopment of the Harbour area to see 600 new homes, create more jobs and become a new destination for locals and visitors alike,”
A further report on the development approach will be brought to Cabinet for approval at a later date
Posted on 13 February
The latest survey of Cornwall’s residents is showing signs of positive progress by Cornwall Council in many areas, according to a new survey published today as part of the council’s quarterly performance reporting to Cabinet.
The survey, conducted at the end of last year, shows the council met three performance targets with improved results:
- Resident perceptions of Cornwall Council’s value for money, which are in line with the LGA national results and 14 percentage points higher than in the 2017 resident survey
- 46% of residents agree the council is standing up and campaigning of Cornwall, 12 percentage points higher than in the 2017 resident survey
- Overall more than half (51%) of residents are satisfied with the way that Cornwall Council runs things, five percentage points higher than in 2017, though lower than the national figure.
Resident satisfaction with the local area as a place to live remains higher than national results collated by the Local Government Association, (LGA) with 83% of Cornwall residents satisfied compared to the LGA figure of78%. Residents’ trust in Cornwall Council moved slightly ahead of the national LGA results (58% to 57%).
Council Leader Adam Paynter welcomed the improvements in the survey results and said the Council was moving in the right direction with more work to be done.
Adam Paynter said: “The survey provides us with a benchmark against other councils and an independent assessment of how we are performing.
“It’s a positive sign that more people feel satisfied with the place they live, they feel that the council is standing up for them and they feel that the council delivers value for money.
“The challenge now is to ensure this positive shift is sustained, while we also consider areas for improvement. For example, only three in five people who contacted the council recently said we got everything right first time (62% in 2017 compared to 72% in 2018).
“We have a strong focus across all services on delivering the Council’s Customer Service Promise to get things right first time for customers and we will continue to work to improve this for our residents.” Cllr Paynter said.
Services residents were most satisfied with included:
- Refuse collections – 81% satisfied
- Recycling services – 77%
- Fire and rescue service – 75%
- Parks and open spaces – 60%
- Keeping public land clear of litter and refuse – 60%
- Street cleaning – 57%
When asked to name the single thing the council most needs to improve, respondents most commonly said:
- Better/more road improvements – 16%
- Better care for the elderly and vulnerable – 8%
- Better communication – 8%.
Councillor Paynter said resident feedback had been taken into account with the budget proposals discussed at the Cabinet today including an additional £30million for road maintenance and potholes, as well as an extra £17 million over four years for adult social care.
Posted on 13 February 2019
The full survey results can be accessed at www.cornwall.gov.uk/residentsurvey
Cornwall Council’s Cabinet today agreed to a proposed 2019/20 budget which will protect vital frontline services for the most vulnerable residents in Cornwall, and a business and investment plan for a strong economy post Brexit.
The budget proposal will see council tax put up by 3.99% - an extra 88 pence per week for a Band B property.
The proposed budget follows community consultation which saw engagement of over 80,000 residents, and took into account resident feedback to develop the final proposals which include:
- an extra £17 million over the next four years to meet the increasing demand for social care for vulnerable adults;
- increasing funding for services for vulnerable children and families by 10%;
- investing an additional £30 million in our roads;
- putting an extra £10 million into pay packages through the council’s commitment to a genuine living wage for people in Cornwall;
- directly investing in homes and jobs that people in Cornwall need, with Cornwall Council being the number one area for the delivery of affordable housing;
- protecting evening and weekend bus services for our residents and creating one of the best integrated rural transport services in the country with smart ticketing; and
- almost £30m investment into digital improvements and the wider roll-out of superfast broadband across Cornwall.
Cabinet also agreed the capital programme, which will see more than £1.2bn investment to deliver essential infrastructure, create jobs and support the delivery of quality homes in Cornwall.
The Deputy Leader of Cornwall Council and Cabinet portfolio holder for resources, Julian German, said setting the council’s budget and council tax for 2019/20 and planning for the years beyond was challenging.
“We are under no illusions that this is a tough budget. The council will not receive any government revenue support grant after 2022, and Cornwall will need to become increasingly self-sufficient. Instead of government grant, we will be reliant on income from council tax and a share of the rates payable by businesses based in the local area.
“We have looked at other options available before considering the level of council tax. We are taking a different approach to securing services that residents’ value. This budget has a strong focus on delivering innovative ways of supporting the care needs of individuals, giving people appropriate short-term support sooner that will reduce the need for expensive longer-term support services.
“We’ve also saved money within the council by reducing printing and mileage costs, alongside a major transformation project to re-engineer the back office functions at the council.
“In response to feedback from residents during the consultation, we’ve kept council tax at 2% rather than using the extra 1% that the Government allows us to raise council tax by. Along with the adult social care levy of 2% again next year, this means a total increase in council tax of 3.99%, if agreed by full council later this month.
“We do not take this decision lightly; but we believe this will achieve the right balance to ensure those people most in need of support will continue to get the assistance they need, whilst also keeping council tax as one of the lowest in the South West.
Cllr German said exploration of a voluntary contribution during the budget consultation found about a third of online responses supported the principle, with further work to now be undertaken to see if this might be a future option.
He also said calls for a tax on second home owners and a tourist tax featured strongly in the budget consultation, with the Council closely monitoring developments across the country.
Cllr German said the council would continue to stand up and campaign for fairer funding for Cornwall and called for support from local MPs to make sure that Cornwall does not lose out on grounds of rurality in core local government funding, sector deals, the relocation of public bodies, and affordable housing partnerships.
A final decision on the budget and the proposed 3.99% council tax increase will be made at the full council meeting on 26 February 2019.
As well as discussing the budget and performance of the council, the Cabinet meeting also:
- approved the annual revenue budget and capital programme for Tamar Bridge and Torpoint Ferry approved as well as the projected longer term financial model to meet ongoing maintenance needs;
- ratified the Housing Revenue Account for the next financial year, which will see social and affordable dwelling rent reduce by 1% in 2019/20. This was supported by the Cornwall Housing Tenants Forum; and
- gave the go ahead for the council’s strategic directors and the project team to get on with the delivery of the new 3.9 mile St Austell to A30 link road - a vital strategic link to bring opportunities to the area including economic growth and better connectivity for residents.
Posted on 13 February
A man who bullied elderly homeowners in Redruth and Wadebridge into having gardening work undertaken has been convicted of six offences, including two charges of aggressive practice, after an investigation by Cornwall Council Trading Standards.
John Paul Newbury, 33, trading as ‘J&J Tree Services’ from Little Acres, Dolbeare, Ashburton, near Newton Abbot, appeared before Bodmin Magistrates Court on Thursday, February 7, and admitted six charges. He was ordered to pay fines, prosecution costs and compensation totalling almost £2,000.
The court heard that the Trading Standards investigation was triggered by two incidents last summer.
On 27 July a woman in her seventies was picking up grass clippings from her garden in Redruth when a white pick-up van pulled up and Newbury approached her and began to pick up the grass clippings himself, stating that he would help her with the task. He then charged her £60 before taking items from her garden shed.
The second incident took place on 1 August 2018 when a Wadebridge couple in their eighties received an unsolicited call at their home. When the husband answered the door he was met by Newbury who asked if there was any work they wanted done in the garden specifically referencing a tree in the back garden.
He returned to the couple’s home a second time and pressured them into having work done charging them £90. When the couple were using a cash machine to get the money a concerned neighbour called the police. The officers attended and were able to prevent the money being paid.
Cornwall Councillor Sue James, Cabinet Member for Neighbourhoods and Communities, welcomed the conviction: “This was despicable behaviour, targeted at older people trying to enjoy an independent life in their own homes. While the sums involved this time may not be large, the impact of this sort of crime on people can be devastating.
“I applaud the actions of the concerned neighbour in reporting the matter and I am pleased to see how well the Council’s Trading Standards officers work with colleagues in Devon and Cornwall Police.
“But these incidents do illustrate our warning – never deal with anyone who turns up at your home without an invitation, no matter how convincing or demanding they may be. And, if you feel threatened by a cold caller phone the police straight away.”
Posted on 13 February
Local residents and businesses in Liskeard are being invited to shape the future of the town’s cattle market site by taking part in Cornwall Council’s first ever Charrette programme.
Liskeard is one of just two towns in England selected by the Government to take part in the ground-breaking programme which brings local residents together with designers and decision makers to co-design the future of their local area.
Plans for the intensive five day interactive planning and design event taking place between Friday 8 March and Tuesday 12 March were unveiled at an official launch held in the town’s Public Hall today (12 February 2019).
Announcing the programme Cornwall Councillor for Liskeard East Sally Hawken said, “We know there is strong community support for redeveloping this key site in the heart of Liskeard to create a mixed use development which enhances local facilities and boosts the local economy, and brings more local people and visitors into the town.
“The Charrette provides us with a fantastic opportunity to build on the work which has already taken place to develop a clear vision and delivery plan to achieve this.
The Liskeard Cattle Market Site Charrette, supported by the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government, is being led by a dedicated specialist team from nationally recognised architects JTP, with support from Cornwall Council and Liskeard Town Council.
Bob Egerton, Cornwall’s Council’s Cabinet portfolio holder for Planning and the Economy, said, “We are delighted Liskeard has been chosen to take part in this programme. Cornwall Council iscommitted to working with partners to help regenerate the Cattle Market site and I would encourage the local community to get involved and have their say.
“The Charrette process has proved highly effective in other parts of the country and we will be looking closely at how it works in Liskeard so we can replicate it in other areas of Cornwall in the future.“
The Mayor Councillor Christina Whitty said, “I am delighted that our town has this opportunity to participate in the Government’s model Charrette process and greatly looking forward to seeing how it works. We hope that by bringing together local stakeholders in designing the future for this key Cornwall Council owned site, the former cattle market will provide jobs and bring prosperity to the centre of Liskeard.”
The first two days of programme focus on public workshop sessions where local residents will have the opportunity to share their knowledge and views and work with partners to co-create a vision for the site. These drop in sessions, which are open to everyone, are being held at the Liskerrett Centre between 1.45 pm and 5.30pm on Friday, 8 March, and between 11 am and 4.00 pm on Saturday 9 March.
The team from JTP will then analyse the outcomes from the workshops and draw up a vision for the site, which will include an illustrative masterplan. This will be presented back to the local community on the evening of the final day - Tuesday 12 March – at the Elliot House Hotel.
JTP is an award-winning architecture practice with extensive experience of delivering placemaking projects at every scale, from cities and towns, to neighbourhoods, streets and the design of individual buildings; creating new places and breathing life into old ones. Charles Campion, Partner at JTP said, “We are delighted to have been asked to work with the local community to co-design a vision for this important site. The launch was a great opportunity to start meeting groups and individuals from a wide range of organisations in the town and we hope that as many people as possible will come along to the Charrette to help shape the future of the Cattle Market site and its relationship with the town.”
Following the Charrette members of the Liskeard Cattle Market Working Group will review the outcomes of the five day event and develop a final plan which will be considered by the Neighbourhood Plan Group, Liskeard Town Council and Local Cornwall Councillors. The group will also develop a separate plan identifying some short term “meanwhile” uses of the site.
Partners will then work together to develop business cases for individual elements of the scheme which will be used to support bids for funding.
Once acceptable and viable development proposals have been agreed by partners, the proposals will be used to develop an updated masterplan which will then go out to a further round of public consultation before a Final Master Plan and a phased Delivery Plan is presented to key stakeholder groups.
Story posted 12 February 2019
At Truro Magistrates Court on 11 February 2019, Joanna Lutey (42) and Michael Jackson (31) who run a smallholding in St Austell, pleaded guilty to keeping poultry when banned.
On 23 January and again on 31 January 2019, officers from Cornwall Council’s Animal Health team visited their smallholding and discovered 120 birds (geese, ducks and chickens) living there and living in unsuitable conditions, despite a ban on the couple keeping poultry. The poultry has since been sold and are no longer at the smallholding.
Cornwall Council originally prosecuted Miss Lutey and Mr Jackson in October 2018 when they were convicted of causing cruelty to birds. Mr Jackson was given a 200 hour community service order and Miss Lutey a 100 hour community service order. They were ordered to pay £4000 in costs and given a 10 year ban on keeping poultry.
On 18 December 2018 the ban was appealed at Truro Crown Court, however the appeal was refused and Mr Jackson and Miss Lutey were given a month to dispose of their birds.
Due to their early guilty plea and the fact that the birds have now been removed, Miss Lutey and Mr Jackson were both given a 12 month conditional discharge and ordered to pay £1000 each towards the Council’s costs.
Sue James, Cornwall Council cabinet portfolio holder for environment and public protection said: “The outcome of this case shows the Council’s commitment to upholding orders of the court and ensuring the health and welfare of farm animals. It’s important that we took this action in order to maintain the good reputation of the farming industry in Cornwall.”
Story posted 12 February 2019
Essential works to progress the St Erth Multi Modal Hub scheme which will bring improvements to both the junction and the parking facilities at the station will be taking place from this Wednesday 13 February 2019.
This means that 24 hour temporary traffic lights will be in place along the A30 at St Erth between Wednesday, 13 February to Wednesday, 20 February to bring together the existing and new road levels at the junction to the new St Erth Multi Modal Hub.
The narrowness of this stretch of road means that temporary traffic lights are needed to maintain access to the station and protect the workforce.
The lights will be in place from early on Wednesday morning (13 Feb) to late on Friday afternoon (15 Feb) while crews are working on the site. They will then be removed over the weekend before being reinstated on the Monday morning (18 Feb) and will then remain in place until the works, which are currently scheduled to run until Wednesday 20 February, are completed. Crews will be working through the night as well as during the day to complete them as quickly as possible to help minimise potential disruption to road users.
Priority will be given to the A30 traffic but both lanes will need to be stopped periodically to allow any queuing traffic on Treloweth Lane to drive out of Station Approach.
While the new slip lane into Station Approach will be closed during the works, westbound traffic on the A30 can turn left into Station Approach when lights permit. Eastbound traffic can access Station Approach via the St Erth Roundabout and then approaching from the westbound direction. All but high sided vehicles leaving the station will be diverted towards St Erth village where there will be a temporary “No Right Turn” restriction sign. This junction will be manned during daylight hours to further enforce this restriction.
Geoff Brown, Cornwall Council Cabinet Portfolio Holder for Transport, said: “This is an important milestone for this vital project which is on schedule to be completed by May 2019 to coincide with the introduction of increased train services. They are an important part of the One Public Transport Scheme to make significant joined up improvements to public transport to benefit residents and visitors.
“The St Erth Multi Modal Hub scheme will deliver significant improvements to both the junction and the parking facilities at the station. We recognise, however, that this is a busy stretch of road and we’ll be doing all we can to keep disruption to local residents, visitors and businesses to a minimum during this period.
Funding for the project has been provided by Cornwall Council, the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and Growth Deal funding provided by Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly Local Enterprise Partnership.
Story posted 12 February 2019
Guidance for businesses on how to prepare for trading in the event of a ‘no deal’ Brexit has been released today by Cornwall Council, the Cornwall Chamber of Commerce, and the Federation of Small Businesses.
Based on Government’s guidance on how to prepare your business if the UK leaves the EU without a deal, the 15-page guide summarises key information on how to prepare for possible new trading arrangements.
Leader of Cornwall Council, Adam Paynter, said: “With the ongoing uncertainty from the Government, we know a lot of our business owners are concerned about what a possible no deal Brexit will mean for them. We’ve turned some of Government’s information into a short guide to help businesses navigate their way through a no-deal scenario.”
As well as detailing issues for importing and exporting, the guide prompts businesses to consider a range of other issues, from transfers of personal data to trademarks, copyright and product labelling.
Ann Vandermeulen, Development Manager for FSB Cornwall, said: “No matter how small a business is, it is vital that support is available through these difficult times and that everyone can prepare in order to protect livelihoods, communities and our local economy.
“As a business owner, you may not yet be aware of all of the ways a no deal Brexit may affect you – we urge all of you to read this helpful toolkit to try and gain some insight. In these uncertain times it’s better to be safe than sorry and whilst businesses are resilient and flexible, we are warning them not to be complacent. We commend Cornwall Council for leading this collaboration with ourselves and the Chamber of Commerce to assist our valuable business community and we recommend that all businesses take note.”
Kim Conchie, Chief Executive Officer of Chamber of Commerce, said: “It is really important for businesses in the South West to understand how they may be affected by Brexit as the date to exit the EU gets closer. Even if you think your business will not be immediately affected, it is important to understand changes in trade laws and the way in which we will trade with the EU in the future. I would urge anyone in business to read this helpful guide put together by Cornwall Council, to help with your business planning in the short term.”
Businesses are also encouraged to consider what steps they can take to help their employees to apply for settlement through the EU Settlement Scheme, using Government’s employer toolkit. This week, the Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Leadership Board also underlined the importance of EU nationals to the local economy, and encouraged them to apply to the scheme in an open letter.
The guidance can be found on Cornwall Council’s website at cornwall.gov.uk/brexit, which also signposts businesses to further information and support.
Posted on 11 February
The future of Lostwithiel’s library has been secured with Lostwithiel Town Council officially taking over the service from today (Monday 11 February).
The library has reopened under management of Lostwithiel Town Council with a group of trained, committed volunteers.
The arrangement, which is part of Cornwall Council’s devolution programme, means the historic Taprell House building will continue to be the location of Lostwithiel Library.
Following the transfer Lostwithiel Library will remain part of the countywide service meaning customers will keep their existing library cards and will still be able to visit, borrow and order books online from other libraries in Cornwall.
The Town Council and a dedicated and trained group of volunteers will support all the key services essential to a modern library (including book loans, free computer access and weekly rhyme time sessions to toddlers and carers) with support from Cornwall Council.
Cornwall Council has expressed thanks to the Town Council and the volunteers for their commitment and hard work throughout the process.
Pam Jarrett Mayor of Lostwithiel said: “I am thrilled that we have been able to secure Lostwithiel library’s future for the community with the help of our community volunteers. Lostwithiel’s library delivery model is unique in Cornwall and I firmly believe that with our individual, personal approach we will make it an outstanding success. We look forward to welcoming our library users both old and new.’’
Tim Hughes, Deputy Mayor of Lostwithiel said: “Lostwithiel Library has been a much loved and an integral part of our community. It is really positive that Lostwithiel Town Council has been able to work in partnership with Cornwall Council to develop this innovative and unparalleled solution to keeping this vital community asset open for the benefit of one and all.”
Edwina Hannaford, Cornwall Council Cabinet Member for Neighbourhoods, said: “We have been working closely with town and parish councils and community groups to find the best custodians for local libraries through our Library Transformation Programme. Our aim has always been to work with partners and communities to create sustainable services aligned to local needs. As a result of our agreement with Lostwithiel Town Council, local residents will be able to continue enjoying their library for many years to come."
Posted 11 February
A property in Penzance has been secured with a closure order as part of Cornwall Council and partners’ bid to tackle anti-social behaviour – making it the third premises closure in West Penwith in a fortnight.
Cornwall Council’s Anti-Social Behaviour Team and Devon and Cornwall Police have been working in partnership with LiveWest Housing to deal with ongoing anti-social behaviour in Penzance.
On 30 January 2019 a Partial Closure Order was granted by Cornwall Magistrates Court on a property in Trezela Road, Penzance.
The Partial Closure Order is in place for three months from the date of issue.
Access is now restricted to the named tenant of the premises and those who habitually reside at the property.
Dorian Thomas, Anti-Social Behaviour Caseworker at Cornwall Council, said: “The Partial Closure order was applied for in response to information provided by members of the public and agencies involved, showing how the tenant of the address allowed visitors to the property to cause alarm and distress to the community.
“The tenant failed to manage their tenancy and allowed a number of breaches to occur within their agreement with LiveWest. This included allowing visitors to attend the address and have a free run of the premise and act in a disorderly manner. By allowing this behaviour to occur they also placed family members at risk.
“All agencies involved have worked closely to make this closure a success and improve the quality of life for the other residents within the location.”
Posted on 11 February
Liskeard residents and business owners are invited to have their say on the vision for the regeneration of Liskeard Cattle Market over five days of events to be held in the town in March.
From Friday 08 March to Tuesday 12 March, a Government sponsored ‘charrette’ - a series of walkabouts and public workshops to bring people together to create a design and plan for a specific area - will be held at various venues in Liskeard town centre.
Liskeard Cattle Market is one of only two projects in England to be have been successful in a bid to Government for support to hold a charrette. The events in Liskeard will give everyone involved with the project an opportunity to have access to a range of expertise and experience to help co-design the future regeneration of this prime town site.
The programme and venues will be confirmed shortly.
Since the final sale at Liskeard Cattle Market in December 2017, work has been going on behind the scenes to determine a great future for the site.
Cornwall Council has been working with Liskeard Town Council, local Cornwall Council members, and other stakeholders to identify future options and a key focus for redeveloping this site is to bring more local people and visitors into Liskeard.
Previous consultations show strong community support for redeveloping the site, with a wealth of suggestions and ideas from the community.
Bob Egerton, Cornwall’s Council’s Cabinet portfolio holder for Planning and the Economy, said: “We are committed to working with residents and partners to create a development on this key site which complements what Liskeard already has to offer, boosts the economy and bring more local people and visitors into the town.
We have been working over the past two years to look at the options and we now have the opportunity to take stock, hold these events and work out how best to move forward with everyone on board.
“We will also be looking closely at how this process works in Liskeard so we can potentially replicate it in other parts of Cornwall.“
Cornwall Councillor for Liskeard East Sally Hawken said: “The charrette programme has proved highly effective in other parts of the country and I’m looking forward to seeing how it can help us build on the work we’ve already done as residents, businesses and council’s all work together to regenerate this key site in the heart of our town.”
The Government has appointed a dedicated specialist team led by nationally recognised architects JTP to support the charrette process.
JTP is an award-winning architecture practice with extensive experience of delivering placemaking projects at every scale, from cities and towns, to neighbourhoods, streets and the design of individual buildings; creating new places and breathing life into old ones. Charles Campion, Partner at JTP said, “We are delighted to have been asked to facilitate this collaborative charrette process and we are greatly looking forward to working with the community to shape the vision for this important site.”
Story posted 08 February 2019
Three more towns in Cornwall – St Austell, Camborne and Newquay – will be able to bid for money from the government’s Future High Street Fund after a government decision to allow more bids from Cornwall.
The original Fund submission criteria only allowed only one bid from each Local Authority area. Following lobbying from Cornwall Council Leader Adam Paynter to treat rural areas like Cornwall fairly in the process, Cornwall will now be able to submit a total of four bids.
Earlier this week, the Council confirmed Penzance would be the focus for its bid for a share of the Fund – bids will now also be submitted for St Austell, Camborne and Newquay.
Councillor Paynter welcomed the decision by Government to allow the Council to submit more bids. “This is good news for Cornwall and could provide a much needed boost to local high streets. However, the criteria is still very challenging for a rural area like Cornwall and the timeframes for submission are tight. There are potentially for over 465 bids which could be submitted from towns across the country.”
Cornwall Council identified Penzance as the focus of Cornwall Council’s bid after it topped an expression of interest process which was sent out to Town Councils.
Penzance will be the main bid from Cornwall for the Future High Street Fund but there is now the opportunity to endorse bids from the towns that scored highly in the selection process if there is the resource to produce those bids locally to meet the bid deadline of 22 March 2019.
Launched on the 26 December 2018, the Future High Streets Fund is key part of the Government’s plan for the High Street, providing co-funding towards capital projects that transform and regenerate town centres through innovative proposals around transport, housing delivery and our public services.
The Government’s criteria is focused on clear objectives for high streets that are facing significant challenge.
Councillor Paynter stressed that the High Street Fund “is not the only show in town” and said Cornwall Council would continue to support and work with towns across Cornwall.
“Town centres are the lifeblood of communities across Cornwall and the Council has a track record of working with places to improve local economies.
“We are working with towns such as Hayle, Redruth, Liskeard and Torpoint on exciting plans for the future. We have a Councillor led Scrutiny Panel looking at the Vitality of Towns. It will make recommendations on how we can tackle the challenges town centres are facing by considering replacing retail with housing, work and leisure space,” he said.
“We’ve also invested in place-shaping work to strengthen local economies and communities in Bodmin and Launceston. This is an agenda we are committed to and we will make sure that lessons learned from the High Street Fund and the findings from the scrutiny panel are shared with other communities across Cornwall.”
Story posted 08 February 2019
Cornwall Council owned Tremorvah Industries, based in Threemilestone, boasts a diverse workforce with 70 per cent of them having a registered disability.
Tremorvah is the only supported business in Cornwall and is one of less than 50 across the whole of the UK. It delivers employment, development and training opportunities for people with disabilities and to help them, whenever possible, into mainstream employment.
Supported businesses receive funding from the Department of Work and Pensions but this is only 5% of Tremorvah’s income. Tremorvah used to rely on the Council for funding but this has now changed with the business now subsidy free from the council and generating income, with an annual turnover of around £2.5 million.
Diana Lobb, General Manager of Tremorvah Industries said: “We want to challenge perceptions of supported businesses and the employment of staff with disabilities.
“We aim to add real value to the local community while showing that people with disabilities have valuable transferable skills and a resilience that makes them hugely valuable employees.”
Latest data shows that an estimated 3.8 million people of working age with disabilities are in employment, an employment rate of 50.7 per cent, compared to 81.1 per cent for people without disabilities. That means 368,000 people with disabilities of working age are unemployed.
One of the main things you’ll notice when you walk into Tremorvah’s showroom is a massive range of equipment and furniture that supports people to live independently in their own home. The lived experiences of the staff mean they’re ideally placed to advise people on the sorts of equipment that will suit their needs.
Customer service manager Julie Kinney from Truro reflected on how she came to work at Tremorvah: “Coming to work at Tremorvah I was given the chance to grow and shown what I was capable of. It took the pressure off and actually halted my illness.
“You’re able to talk to customers on the same level because you know what they’re going through. It’s really rewarding seeing the difference you can make to someone’s life.”
Cornwall Council Portfolio Holder for Adults Rob Rotchell said: “It’s important to remember that we are all individuals with different skills and abilities who all bring different experiences to the work place.
“Tremorvah’s business model proves that with the right support and work environment people can flourish and succeed which in turn can show huge rewards for the business.”
Posted on 7 February