90 new homes set for Lodden Lakes, Gillingham

Dorset For You - Wed, 11/07/2018 - 16:57

A total of 90 new homes in Gillingham have been given approval by Councillors at North Dorset District Council’s Planning Committee.

Lodden Lakes development site – Gillingham

The development, on Land to the East of Lodden Lakes, was given outline consent in May 2015. This latest application presented the detailed design elements of the development.

Once completed, the development will provide a total of 18 affordable homes, including:

  • 2 one-bedroom flats
  • 11 two-bedroom flats
  • 2 two-bedroom homes
  • 3 three-bedroom homes

Of the total 90 homes, the development will include:

  • 2 one-bedroom flats
  • 11 two-bedroom flats
  • 6 two-bedroom homes
  • 54 three-bedroom homes
  • 17 four-bedroom homes

Cllr David Walsh, North Dorset District Council’s Cabinet Member for Planning, said:

“I am pleased the applicant has reflected feedback received through five years of community engagement and feedback with local stakeholders into the scheme. Now approved, I look forward to work starting on this first phase of the Southern Extension which will total 1,800 homes. We have worked hard to get to this stage where we can finally build the houses we desperately need.”

Amy Nash, Land Manager at Taylor Wimpey Southern Counties, comments:

“This application is an exciting step forward and shows our commitment to delivering high-quality new-build homes in Gillingham.

“We are very happy to have been given the green light so that we can progress with our plans for Gillingham Meadows and make significant contributions toward the community infrastructure of Gillingham.”

Sign up to Home Ownership Register

Cllr Graham Carr-Jones, Leader of North Dorset District Council and Cabinet Member for Housing, said:

“This approval is good news for the area and for our Opening Doors Programme.

“As part of this programme, we have opened a Home Ownership register. This is already giving us real insight into the preferred type and location of housing wanted by residents. I would encourage anyone looking to own their own home to sign the register and provide us with even greater information.”

Find out more about Opening Doors or sign up to the Home Ownership Register and receive regular housing development updates in your area.

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Categories: Dorset

False claims log burner trader fined

Dorset For You - Wed, 11/07/2018 - 15:56

A trader from Somerset who made false claims to consumers about his competence and approval to fit wood burners has been prosecuted. This followed investigations by trading standards officers when a Weymouth consumer complained about problems with a wood burner they had installed at their home.

26-year-old Daniel Park from Crewkerne was prosecuted by Dorset County Council and pleaded guilty at Weymouth Magistrates’ Court on 5 November 2018 to three offences of publishing misleading claims: one under the Fraud Act 2006 and two under the Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations 2008.

While trading as ‘Flaming Burners’ in March 2017 Mr Park admitted to dishonestly making a false representation on his business’s Facebook page that he was registered with HETAS (Heating Equipment Testing Approvals Scheme) and OFTEC (Oil Firing Technical Association) – both organisations that help ensure the safety and quality of various heating installations. He also admitted misleading consumers with a further false claim that he was a member of the Association of Plumbing and Heating Contractors (APHC) and that in April last year he made a misleading statement on his website that was a registered installer which allowed him to sign off his own wood burner installations.

Councillor Andrew Parry, Cabinet member with lead responsibility for Trading Standards, said:

“With safety-critical installations such as wood burners or gas appliances it is vital that consumers can trust the competence of the business they are dealing with. They have a right to expect that claims made by businesses are true wherever they are advertised, and this includes on social media sites used by traders to attract work.

“Our Trading Standards Service regularly intervenes and investigates false claims and we will take formal action such as prosecution where that is appropriate.”

Daniel Park was sentenced to a 18-month conditional discharge, fined £400 and ordered to pay £800 towards the County Council’s prosecution costs and £302 compensation to the victims.

After installing a log burner, hearth, flue and accessories in July 2017 at the house of a couple in Weymouth, Park was unable to provide the necessary safety certification to the consumers. After problems with the installation they made a complaint to Trading Standards via the Citizens Advice consumer helpline. Investigations revealed that Mr Park was not and has never been a member of APHC, HETAS or OFTEC.

Consumers wishing to report unfair trading problems to trading standards, or to complain about any goods or services, should contact the Citizens Advice Consumer Service 03454 04 05 06.

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Categories: Dorset

11 things you need to know about Weymouth Town Council

Dorset For You - Wed, 11/07/2018 - 15:41

As work progresses to set up a new town council, we would like to share some key facts and answer some frequently asked questions about this important and historic change for Weymouth. 

View of Weymouth seafront 1. Why do we need a new town council?

Weymouth and Portland Borough Council will cease to exist in 2019 to make way for a new unitary council for the Dorset area. Following these changes Weymouth would be the only area in Dorset without a parish or town council. Parish and town councils provide a local voice to represent an area.

2. When will it launch?

Weymouth Town Council will officially launch on 1 April 2019.

3. What area will it cover?

The new town council will cover the existing wards of Littlemoor, Radipole, Upway and Broadwey, Westham East, Wey Valley, Weymouth East, Melcombe Regis, Preston, Westham North, Weymouth West and Wyke Regis.

4. How many councillors will there be?

Weymouth Town Council will have 29 Councillors. It’s recommended that the number of councillors should stay the same as the outgoing borough council, with an opportunity to review after the council is set up.

5. What assets and services will Weymouth Town Council be responsible for?

Talks and negotiations are currently underway to decide this.

The assets and services which up until now have been owned or managed by Weymouth and Portland Borough Council could transfer to the new town council, Portland Town Council or Dorset’s new unitary authority.

Initial proposals were considered by the Shadow Town Council on 18 October 2018. These will also be considered by Weymouth and Portland Borough Council’s Management Committee and the Shadow Dorset Executive Committee. However the final decision about which assets and services will transfer to the new town council will not be made until Weymouth and Portland Borough Council’s Full Council meeting in January 2019.

6 What is the Shadow Town Council?

The Shadow Weymouth Town Council is made up of members of Weymouth and Portland Borough Council who are ward members for the Weymouth area. It is a committee of the borough council and has been set up to help guide the formation of the new town council. It has no decision making powers and will cease to exist when Weymouth Town Council comes into effect. Meetings of the Shadow Town Council are open to the public to attend.

Committee dates and agendas  for the Shadow Town Council are available to view online.

7 Who will be the Town Clerk?

Jane Biscombe has been appointed as the new Town Clerk for Weymouth. Although the Town Council does not come into being until April 2019, Jane will take up the role of Town Clerk in a part time capacity in November 2018 and in a full time capacity in January 2019.

8 What does the Town Clerk do?

Weymouth’s Town Clerk will be responsible for setting up one of the largest town councils in England and Wales. A key requirement of the role is to provide strong leadership and build a wide range of positive working relationships with councillors, the council’s workforce and partner organisations across the public, private and voluntary sectors. The Town Clerk will initially work with Weymouth’s Shadow Town Council to create the new council on 1 April 2019.

9. Will the introduction of the town council affect my Council Tax bill?

Town Councils are funded through a precept which forms part of a household’s overall Council Tax bill. Please be assured the charge residents pay for Weymouth and Portland Borough Council will be reduced before the charge for Weymouth Town Council is introduced. The precept for Weymouth Town Council is still being worked on and will be agreed and set in January 2019.

10. Will there be an election for the new council?

Yes. Elections will be held in 2019, 2024 and 2029 and then every four years. This would then align the town council elections with that of the new unitary council. This helps with reducing costs. It means that people will only have to go to the polls every four years for both councils.

11. What will happen to the existing council offices at Commercial Road?

It is proposed that the Commercial Road offices will transfer to the Town Council and become their base. We expect that Dorset Council will still wish to continue delivering some of its services from the building. Work towards this decision is ongoing and a final decision will be made in January.

Stay up to date on this topic and other council news by subscribing to our residents’ e-newsletter or by following us on Twitter

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Categories: Dorset

Film shows people love their parks

Dorset For You - Tue, 11/06/2018 - 15:23

See our #loveweyportparks2018 entries here.   

A lovely photo entered into #loveweyportparks2018

Thank you to everyone who entered the #loveweyportparks2018 photography competition.

A total of 120 entries were received. The competition was set-up to celebrate Weymouth and Portland’s wonderful parks and gardens. 

A winner will be chosen later this month by the Friends Groups of the various parks. Our parks are among the best in Britain

There are 10 parks and gardens in Weymouth and Portland and they host a programme of community events including art exhibitions, park runs, concerts and outdoor shows.

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Categories: Dorset

Christchurch Borough Council to offer free parking this Sunday         

Dorset For You - Tue, 11/06/2018 - 14:02





Christchurch Borough Council to offer free parking this Sunday.         

Christchurch Borough Council has agreed to offer free parking on Sunday 11 November 2018, from 8am until 7pm. Free parking will be available in Priory Car Park, Wick Lane Car Park, Saxon Square Car Park and Bank Close Car Park.

Details of Remembrance Day events in Christchurch can be found here

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Categories: Dorset

Recognising local people in our community

Dorset For You - Tue, 11/06/2018 - 10:50


East Dorset District Council Chairman, Cllr Mrs Toni Coombs is pleased to announce the launch of the Chairman’s Community Awards 2019.

This will be the last Community Awards before the abolition of the existing district council and Cllr Mrs Coombs wants to make this the finest Community Awards initiative ever!

Cllr Mrs Coombs, said: “It is important that we recognise volunteers and businesses that put so much value back into our communities. “I would like to thank the sponsors, without whom, this initiative would not be possible.”

The Awards are being supported by Blackmore Vale Media, D R Smith Properties, Evans & Traves LLP, Hoburne Ltd, Mondoricia Ltd, Nicholas O’Hara Funeral Directors Ltd and Remedy Oak Golf Club.

Successful nominees will be invited to a special presentation evening at Remedy Oak Golf Club in February next year. To nominate someone in your local community download the form below and return your application before New Year’s Eve.

Nomination Form



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Categories: Dorset

Join Kate Adie in a debate about Remembrance – its meaning and the future

Dorset For You - Fri, 11/02/2018 - 15:01

A ‘Question Time’ style debate will discuss what remembrance means. The free event is being held at Dorset History Centre on Friday 9 November.

The panel will be chaired by Dr Fiona Cosson of Bournemouth University’s Public History course. Kate Adie will be joined by Stephen Boyce, head of the South-West Committee of the Heritage Lottery Fund, Symon Hill of the Peace Pledge Union and David Willey, curator at the Tank Museum.

The event will reflect on four years of national commemoration of the First World War and its achievements. And to ask, ‘what remembrance means in a modern context and what it may mean in the future.’

The evening will start with a short introduction from the county archivist, Sam Johnston. Audience members are invited to gather at 7pm for light refreshments before the debate commences at 7.30pm

Book a free place via Eventbrite or call 01305 228920

If you are attending the event, and would like to submit a question for the panel, please send your question to

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Categories: Dorset

Wool bridge open to pedestrians

Dorset For You - Fri, 11/02/2018 - 13:38

Old Wool bridge is now open to walkers and cyclists while work continues.

Wool bridge rebuilt voussoir stones and stone cladding to the reinforced concrete wall

The reinforced concrete retaining wall – to stop future erosion and help support the bridge – was finished in mid-October.

The dry-dam was removed last week as the stonework is now above the waterline of the river. The temporary scaffold footbridge has also been removed. This ensures that all six arches of the bridge are free for the river to flow through as this time of year there is a greater risk of increased water flow and potential flooding.

Work is now continuing to put back in place the original courses of bridge stonework – with a scaffold platform installed to enable this, and part of the bridge remaining closed for working space.

The new stone has been supplied, cut and tooled by W. J. Haysom & Son and Lander’s Quarries in Langton Matravers, Swanage, to ensure a sympathetic restoration.

To further retain the character of the Grade II listed structure, the original lime mortar has been chemically and microscopically analysed so that its unique ‘recipe’ can be replicated. This is being used on all the rebuilt stonework.

All repairs will be finished by the end of November, with the bridge resurfaced as the final part of the work.

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Categories: Dorset

How we are supporting local Armistice Day projects?

Dorset For You - Fri, 11/02/2018 - 11:44

We are delighted to support local events and projects commemorating Armistice Day on Sunday 11 November across West and North Dorset, Weymouth and Portland.

Beacon lighting event

Our events team have been busy organising Weymouth’s part of the national Beacon lighting event. It will take place at the Nothe Fort with free entry to the public. The event starts at 6pm with the Beacon Lighting at 7pm and featuring a variety of performances. These includes feature the Bovington Military Wives Choir and the popular Decadettes. The evening will be hosted by the Mayor of Weymouth and Portland, Cllr Gill Taylor.

In our communities

Our community development team have been working with 6 primary schools in Weymouth. Children made 120 thank you letters to veterans, pictures and hand-made poppies.

Dove making sessions have been held in residential homes, schools and community groups and organisations, churches and The Veterans Hub.


3,700 doves are currently hanging from the ceiling in St. Mary’s church in Weymouth.

Cllr Jon Orrell, Briefholder for Social Inclusion, said “We have seen the community come together to create some wonderful things to remember all those who died in war. The doves of peace are very moving. I wish to extend a big thank you to the volunteers from local churches and housing associations, who have helped with the installations.”

The church will be hosting an event on the 3 November 10.30 – 2.30pm. Local modern day veterans are coming along to share their stories, and The Veterans Hub will be providing a delicious lunch.

Pages of the Sea

Lyme Regis – 11am onwards

Weymouth – 12.30pm onwards

Pages of the Sea is director Danny Boyle’s commission for 14-18 Now to mark the centenary of Armistice Day.  Communities are gathering across the country at beaches as part a unique moment to say goodbye to the millions of men and women who left their shores during the war, many never to return. Large scale portraits of individual soldiers will be created in the sands on the day. Just released information on who will be drawn in to Lyme Regis and Weymouth’s beaches is available here

Learn more about this moving dedication here.  

Royal British Legion

Once again, the ‘Let’s Make it’ Group have raised over £2,000 for the Royal British Legion by selling knitted poppies.

West Dorset

Cllr Peter Shorland, Chairman for West Dorset District Council, made a fund available earlier this year. He says: “I wanted to ensure that we supported community projects that wishes to commemorate the hundredth anniversary of the end of the First World War. We awarded over £8,000 to a variety of projects taking place across West Dorset . I will be unveiling the commemorative plaque at St. James’ Church, Puddletown on Saturday 10 October at 3:30pm.”

Organisation Project description  £ Allington Hill, Cooper’s Wood and Field Community Group To hold a commemoration in memory of the 153 local men who lost their lives during WW1.
The group have registered to have one of the official beacons on top of Allington Hill lit. An open air service at dusk will be  include tree planting and be followed with by food and music. £400 Dorchester Town Council A one-day free access event on 7th November at the Corn Exchange called ‘Keep the Home Fires Burning’ which will take place between 10.30am – 4pm. £500 Broadwind-sor WI Had a commemoration event earlier in the month. £500 Cattistock Parish Council A commemorative booklet for every household in the village, providing information on Cattistock during the Great War, renovations of the war memorial and lots of other activities including a dinner dance and commissioned Requiem and lighting of a beacon. £500 Sydling St Nicholas Parish Council Over 35 members of the village are knitting 1,000 poppies which will be sewn onto netting and then displayed in the church. An exhibition and an evening of Remembrance  will be held on 10 November. £250 Evershot Parish Council A display on 11 November in St Osmund’s Church in Evershot of handmade poppies together with photographs of resident’s relations who served in the First World War, as well as books, documents, paintings, photographs that are relevant to WW1. The village will also light a beacon. £350 Char Valley Parish Council Activity took place on the weekend of 24/25 March at Whitchurch Canonicorum Village Hall and was titled 100 years on – The Whitchurch Men who went to War. £250 Drimpton Village Hall The village is organising a week of events and activities which will culminate in a commemorative show. As part of this they will be holding various art and craft workshops which will be focused on creating poppies in a variety of forms. £350 Owermoigne Parish Council A planting programme to replace a stand of mature beech trees in the playing field that are gradually being lost to age and disease. A commemorative plaque will be played by the trees. £250 Puncknowl-e & Swyre Parish Council Install and dedicate a sunken trampoline at the village playing field that is used by many children. The Parish Council will place a plaque next to the sunken trampoline with the inscription “On this hundredth anniversary of the ending of the First World War, 1914 to 1918, this trampoline is dedicated to those who gave their lives in that conflict that we might live, work and play in freedom”. £500 Eype History Society To hold a 5-day exhibition at St Peter’s church in Eype to display the results of four years’ research into the Eype men who served in WW1. A sponsored poppy trail and set up an education area with maps, WW1 explanations, trench cake and bully beef and will invite local schools to learn and explore. £500 Bridport Arts Centre To develop a special youth theatre production for the public at Bridport Arts Centre featuring the centre’s own youth theatre. The production will be a contemporary response to the struggle and conflict (both emotionally and physically) that the young men going to war faced a century ago. £500 Bridport Town Council A wall clock for the Town Hall and a plaque will be unveiled by the oldest community member who has connection with Bridport town during WW1. A maximum of 100 members of the community who have similar connections with the town (the hall holds a max of 100) will be invited to the event, which will include afternoon tea (WW1 style preferred) and poetry and prose readings by poets and writers of the time. £500 Benefice of Abbotsbury, Portesham & Langton Herring A lunch (after the Remembrance Service at St Peter’s Church in Portesham) to commemorate the armistice and remember those who died for their country from the 3 villages and to give thanks for those who returned. £500 Piddle Valley Parish Council The Parish Council would like to plant a tree, along with a plaque, to commemorate the WW1 centenary. It is hoped that the oldest resident of the Valley will attend the event and help to plant the tree. £500 Tolpuddle Village Hall and St John’s Church, Tolpuddle It is proposed to commission a memorial plaque to be placed in an appropriate place within St John’s church/churchyard. It is hoped that the unveiling would take place on Saturday 10 November and be followed by an event at the village hall. £500 Stratton Parish Council To erect a short length of metal railing fence with two supporting posts behind the existing War Memorial. The metal railing will have appropriate hooks so that wreaths being presented can hang securely from the fence. A permanent plaque will be attached to the railing – expressing the memory of the people of Stratton at the centenary anniversary of the ending of the Great War, along with metal symbolic Poppies attached to the railing. £250 Bridport Heritage Forum An exhibitions entitled ‘War, Peace and New Beginnings’, a pop-up exhibition at West Bay, lectures, talks, schools projects and the publication of a book. £500 Parish of the Winterbournes A 3-stranded Armistice Commemoration in Martinstown to be held in November, and will focus on poetry and music from the era. £450 TOTAL AWARDED: £8,050


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Categories: Dorset

New charges and ban on overnight parking in West Bay

Dorset For You - Thu, 11/01/2018 - 15:29

On Thursday 1 November, members of West Dorset District Council’s strategy committee met to discuss a report relating to parking in West Bay. Members were asked to approve:

  • The removal of free overnight parking in the Station Yard car park
  • Consequential changes to the current hours of operation [to prevent parking between 10pm and 8am]
  • Remove the restriction of a maximum stay of 3 hours in The Mound car park
  • Introduce charges of £2 per hour for every hour after 3 hours in The Mound car par

Cllr John Russell, Portfolio Holder for Environmental Protection and Assets said: “I’m really pleased with the committee’s decision today. West Bay is an incredibly popular destination for visitors, but we have received complaints from local residents and businesses about the significant increase in the number of motorhomes parking overnight in this car park.  Today we have addressed this issue by banning overnight parking. Patrols will be carried out to ensure that this ban is being enforced.”

Removing overnight parking for all vehicles

There is no standard definition of a motorhome or a campervan. This makes it difficult to prohibit only these types of vehicles as vehicles of all shapes and sizes can be adapted and converted to provide sleeping, camping and cooking facilities. Therefore, members have agreed to prohibit any vehicle from parking overnight.  The definition of overnight is not specific enough to use as a restriction. Therefore, members have agreed thapt the parking restriction is set between the hours of 10pm and 8am.

The East Beach car park is open for cars and motorcycles only to use at night. Therefore the closure of the Station Yard car park will not prevent visitors to West Bay from being able to park late.

Supporting the Bridport Harbour Divers Air Station

Cllr Mary Penfold, Portfolio Holder for Enabling, said: “By removing the restriction at The Mound car park we are supporting the Bridport Harbour Divers Air Station. This facility allows visiting divers and diving clubs the opportunity to fill up quickly and easily. West Bay has access to dozens of wrecks. It also plays host to an abundance of varied marine life. By extending the times at this car park it allows divers the best location possible to park their vehicle for a half or full days diving.”

Changes to tariffs: our legal requirements For any changes to the tariffs to be implemented, the Council has to publish a Notice of Variation. This Notice has to be displayed in the affected car parks and a local newspaper at least 21 days prior to the changes being enacted. There is no formal consultation required for such a change, however if the Council receive strong opposition to the published notice, this has to be considered prior to implementation.

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Categories: Dorset

Moors Valley Country Park golf course to reopen

Dorset For You - Thu, 11/01/2018 - 10:34

Christchurch and East Dorset Councils are pleased to announce the re-opening of the Moors Valley Golf Course.

Members of East Dorset District Council Cabinet unanimously supported plans for the golf course at Moors Valley to be run in-house at their meeting on 31 October.

Following the liquidation of Mack Trading on 3 October the council has worked closely with the insolvency practitioner to ensure a satisfactory and timely solution which ensures the golf course is able to reopen as quickly as possible.

The golf course booking line, 01425 479776, will open from 10am on Monday 5 November 2018 with the course reopening to Moors Valley Golf Season Ticket holders from 9am on Tuesday 6 November.

The course will also be open to customers wishing to pay and play from 9am on Monday 12 November 2018.

Cllr Ray Bryan, Cabinet Portfolio Holder for Performance, East Dorset District Council, said: “I am very pleased that the council has been able to react so quickly and effectively to this totally unforeseen occurrence.

“We would like to thank local golfers for their patience and understanding through this uncertain time and are pleased we are able to offer a resolution swiftly.”

Health and wellbeing activities will also be run from the golf centre from early next year to combine the two offers that are available to the public.

As a special offer, a round of golf will cost just £10 between 12 November and 31 December 2018.

Any local clubs and societies wishing to discuss opportunities moving forward can email

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Categories: Dorset

Friends of Durlston receive Volunteer Group of the Year award

Dorset For You - Wed, 10/31/2018 - 17:16

The Friends of Durlston Country Park have been crowned one of the Dorset Volunteer Groups of the Year.

The group’s contribution to reimagining the Victorian landscape of Durlston Park has been recognised in the Dorset Volunteer Awards.

The award, which was presented by Lady Emma Fellowes, also celebrates the 30 years of work by volunteers who work alongside Dorset County Council’s ranger team to support the ongoing running and development of Durlston Country Park.

Cllr Daryl Turner, Cabinet member for the Natural and Built Environment said: “I would like to say a huge thank you to the Friends of Durlston who work so hard behind the scenes to keep it such a special place.

“Durlston has become a vital asset for the local community as well as visitors, and it’s lovely to see volunteers’ work there being recognised with this award.”

Founded in 1988, the group now has over 800 members who have contributed over 10,000 hours of volunteer time to the park and national nature reserve, with duties including dry stone walling, visitor services, running activities for children and fundraising.

While many Friends live in the local area, members come from all over the world and range from young families to people in their 90s – and they come together to conserve and enhance Durlston for wildlife and people for generations to come.

The group was instrumental in the successful redevelopment of Durlston Castle and is a a key supporter of the new Durlston Pleasure Grounds project, which will offer many new opportunities for volunteering and training, especially for people with disabilities, older people and teenagers.

Chair of Friends of Durlston, Catherine Olive, said: “This award is a great tribute to the many people of all ages and backgrounds who give up their time to volunteer. Durlston is home to a wide variety of wildlife and provides a perfect escape in our busy world. I feel very proud to be part of it and to see just how much Friends get out of volunteering.”

If you’re interested in volunteering at Durlston click here or call 01929 424443.

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Categories: Dorset

Helping your child with choosing their GCSEs

Dorset For You - Wed, 10/31/2018 - 09:56

It is important to think carefully about GCSE choices, even though your child’s career may seem like a long way off!

Your child’s GCSE option choices may affect their education and career options post 16. Most colleges, apprenticeships, universities and jobs will require a certain number of GCSE passes and may need specific GCSE subjects and grades.

1. What age will my child have to choose their options?

This usually happens in Year 9 (age 13 to 14), although some schools do this in Year 8 (age 12 to 13).

2. What if my child doesn’t have a clear idea about what they want to do in the future?

Taking a broad range of subjects will help to keep their options open. English, maths and science are compulsory and all students will have to take them at GCSE level. There may also be extra subjects that your child’s school decides to make compulsory.

For their optional subjects, schools must offer at least one option from four subject areas (although your child doesn’t have to take a subject from every area):

  • arts, such as art and design, music, dance, drama and media arts
  • design and technology
  • humanities, such as history and geography
  • modern foreign languages
3. How many GCSEs should my child take?

Up to 9 or 10 subjects is common, although some children do as many as 12. The right number will depend on your child’s academic abilities and their school’s recommendations and limits. Sometimes a higher workload can lead to lower grades overall, so be sure to balance quantity with quality.

4. What if they can’t take all the subjects they want to?

Your child may not be able to take all the subjects they would like, either because certain subjects aren’t offered or because of timetable clashes. If this happens, you could consider other ways to supplement their learning, such as:

  • out-of-school clubs
  • activities like sport, dance, music or drama
  • voluntary work
  • work experience
5. How can I help?

If your child has a specific education or career goal in mind, check online to find out whether there are specific GCSE requirements.

If your child is unsure about their future career, read course material for available subjects and encourage them to think about:

  • what subjects they enjoy
  • what subjects are they good at
  • which subjects best suit their learning style
  • whether they would like to study languages or work abroad in future
6. Need more advice?

Many schools host options evenings, giving parents and children the chance to chat with teachers and careers advisors. Alternatively, you may be able to arrange an appointment to discuss options with your child’s teacher.

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Categories: Dorset

New rules on dogs in North Dorset after listening to your views

Dorset For You - Tue, 10/30/2018 - 15:08

More than 800 people have had their say about where and when dogs should be allowed in public places.

New rules for dogs in public in North Dorset

North Dorset District Council has carefully considered the views’ of dog owners and the concerns of other residents who use public places such as parks.

After considering 859 responses the council has attempted to strike a balance. The result is the new North Dorset Dog Related Public Spaces Protection Order 2018, which will replace the existing order.

This decision was taken at a meeting of the district council’s cabinet and then approved by Full Council earlier this month. (19/10) The new rules will come into effect later this year.

Councillor Andrew Kerby, Community Safety and Wellbeing Portfolio Holder at North Dorset District Council, said: “Thank you to everyone who took the trouble to share their views on how dogs should be managed in public places in North Dorset. We have looked carefully at the results and have tried to strike a balance to suit the interests of all.

“North Dorset District Council encourages responsible dog ownership. Most owners are very responsible, unfortunately a small minority who do not clear-up after their dogs do cause a problem.”

The new North Dorset Dog Related Public Spaces Protection Order 2018 will be available shortly here.

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Categories: Dorset

Dorset County Council bids farewell to its Chief Executive

Dorset For You - Tue, 10/30/2018 - 14:24

Dorset County Council has announced the departure of its current Chief Executive, Debbie Ward, after six years at the helm.

Dorset County Council’s Staffing Committee has today agreed that Debbie Ward, who also holds the statutory responsibility for the Director for Adult Social Services, will end her term as Chief Executive on 30 November 2018. The decision is in line with legal requirements and the County Council’s redundancy policy.

Debbie Ward

Debbie Ward joined Dorset County Council in 2010 as Director for Adult and Community Services, before taking up her position as Chief Executive in 2012. During her tenure, Debbie led a council-wide transformation of the way the County Council delivers its services. This programme delivered multi-million pound savings, modernisation of working practices, closer strategic working with public sector partners and improved services for Dorset residents. Debbie has also played a leading role in achieving greater integration between local government and health services in Dorset, championing a number of nationally innovative initiatives.

Debbie Ward was one of the original officers in support of the case for change to local government in Dorset, helping to drive the reorganisation of Dorset’s nine councils into two new, unitary authorities.

Debbie Ward said:

“Six years ago, I had the privilege to be the first woman to become the Chief Executive of Dorset County Council and, I had no idea at that time, I would be the last ever Chief Executive.

Those six years have flown by and I have enjoyed working with fantastic people both inside and outside of the Council. They have also been the toughest years Dorset County Council have ever seen, with massive budget reductions and, as Chief Executive, I set out my ambition for us to travel that journey and go Forward Together, putting services, communities and transformation at the heart of our thinking, as we did what we had to.

As my role is coming to an end, I would like to thank everyone for their hard work, support and challenge that has made a difference and achieved so much for the county. I have been inspired and have enjoyed working with all colleagues.

Having led us to this point where I believe a strong and sustainable future for our public services can be delivered, I am grateful to the members of the County Council’s Staffing Committee for agreeing that now is the right time for me to step aside and handover the ambition for the future to the new Dorset Councils. It has been agreed today that I will be leaving the County Council at the end of November.

Between November and April, work will continue to establish the new organisation and many colleagues from all the authorities will be working hard to ensure a safe and legal transfer and shape the services for the future.”

Leader of Dorset County Council, Cllr Rebecca Knox said:

“I would like to thank Debbie for the huge contribution she has made over the past eight years to Dorset County Council. As Chief Executive, she has led the organisation through a period of modernisation which has improved our efficiency, transformed the culture of the organisation, and enabled us to deliver better services for residents.”

Leader of the Liberal Democrat Group, Cllr Nick Ireland said:

“I’ve had the pleasure of working closely with Debbie over the past year since becoming leader of the LibDem group at Dorset County Council. In this period of uncertainty as we transition to the new unitary council, I’ve found her to be friendly, hard working, professional and always focused on achieving the best outcome for the residents of Dorset.  I wish her well in her future career.

Following Debbie Ward’s departure from the County Council, Mike Harries, Corporate Director for Environment and Economy, has been recommended by the Staffing Committee for the role of Interim Chief Executive of Dorset County Council through to 31 March 2019.

Nick Jarman, Corporate Director for Children’s Services, will take on the responsibilities of Statutory Director for adult social care (DASS) – this is in addition to his current role as Director for Children’s Services. These recommendations will be considered at the Full Council meeting on 8 November.

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Categories: Dorset

Highcliffe Zig-Zag path rebuild begins

Dorset For You - Mon, 10/29/2018 - 13:34

Following a successful tender process the contract for the works has been awarded to Earlcoate Construction and Plant Hire Ltd.

Advanced vegetation clearance work has been completed and information boards including a timeline for the works are being installed on site to keep people updated with how work is progressing.

Cllr Vicki Hallam, Chair of the Highcliffe Zig-Zag Task and Finish Group, Christchurch Borough Council, said: “We are pleased to see work on rebuilding the zig-zag path beginning.

“This is an extremely complex engineering scheme and after a great deal of hard work it is fantastic to see the contractor starting work on site. I look forward to seeing the path reopened.”

Work is scheduled to be completed by Thursday 18 April 2019.

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Categories: Dorset

East Dorset Community Poppy Project to Commemorate the 100 years since the Armistice

Dorset For You - Thu, 10/25/2018 - 15:48

East Dorset District Council have funded a special community art project in Wimborne to commemorate the Armistice that ended four years of fighting on the eleventh day of the eleventh month 1918.

The poppy project, delivered by artist Peter Margerum, involved up to 400 children from Wimborne who have made poppies from recycled materials.

Seven Wimborne Schools took part including  Wimborne First School, Pamphill First School, Allenbourn Middle School, St John’s First School, QE School, St James First School and Beaucroft School.

Peter Margerum will create Wimborne’s own remembrance artwork by building a 6 foot sweeping arch of bright red poppy heads inspired by the shape of waves. The installation will be exhibited on Wimborne Square over Armistice weekend 10 – 11 November and again on Sunday evening at Wimborne Cemetery during the Beacons of Light Event.

Cllr Mrs Toni Coombs, the Chairman of East Dorset District Council said:

“It is valuable for the young people of East Dorset to continue to learn about the sacrifices made for us by the soldiers of the First World War.

“East Dorset District Council has been pleased to support this project which has given local school children the opportunity to learn through art and we look forward to seeing the results of their work on display in the town.”

On Saturday 10 November there will be other activities and exhibits on the Square, funded by Wimborne History Festival and Wimborne BID. A living history ‘Discharge or Demobbing stand’ which will be at the Square with the Norfolk Regiment re-enacting the demobilisation of soldiers which took place from 1918. There will also be a final free poppy making workshop to help put finishing touches to the art installation or children can make a white dove to hang in the tree on the square.

East Dorset District Council will also be supporting Wimborne Cemetery and Wimborne Town Council with the ‘Beacons of Light’ event taking place at Wimborne Cemetery on Sunday 11 November at 7pm.

For further information about these events and other Armistice activities including the Royal British Legions Remembrance service and parade, The Gathering performance at the Minster and exhibitions at the Priest’s House Museum, see the Armistice Leaflet produced by East Dorset District Council here.

Print copies of this leaflet can be found at the Tourist Information Centre and participating venues.

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Categories: Dorset

Dorset Waste Partnership teams up with charity Ideas2Action to save useful items from being thrown away

Dorset For You - Thu, 10/25/2018 - 15:06

There are organisations and individuals all over Dorset that might need those things you are about to throw in the recycling or rubbish bin.

Charity Ideas2Action has teamed up with the Dorset Waste Partnership (DWP) to produce the first issue of ‘We Need That – Dorset’, a reuse directory that lists dozens of commonly thrown-away items, and the many not-for-profit organisations and individuals who need them.

Items include: –

  • Biscuit tins
  • Flower pots
  • Pallets
  • Buttons
  • Beer bottle caps
  • Paint

The directory is an easy-to-use 20-page document that can be downloaded and printed. Useful items are listed alphabetically, with the contact details of the organisations that need them provided alongside. Copies will also be available to view at Dorset libraries.

People can then contact the organisations directly or may wish to take their items to one of Ideas2Action’s many “Win on Waste®” events held around Dorset, Poole and Bournemouth. These events see volunteers gather donations from members of the public and distribute them to the organisations in the directory. Some schools have even set up their own sessions.

The waste items are then sent to specialist facilities to be made into something new, used in arts and crafts or sold on to make money for charity.

Karyn Punchard, Director of the Dorset Waste Partnership, said:

“We’re delighted to be involved in such a fantastic initiative. Helping Ideas2Action to match items that might otherwise be thrown away with organisations that would benefit from receiving them is tremendously rewarding.

Most people in Dorset recycle their waste because it’s the right thing to do, but reusing items is always better – both for the environment and the public purse. Every single item kept out of the bin saves your local council money in processing costs and reduces the amount of energy required to recycle or treat waste.

The DWP is looking forward to seeing how the ‘We Need That! – Dorset’ reuse directory develops and grows, and watching organisations and individuals benefit from other people’s contributions.”

Monique Munroe, Business Manager of Ideas2Action, added:

“When the Dorset Waste Partnership asked us to produce the reuse directory for Dorset, we jumped at the chance to expand on our successes in Bournemouth and Poole.

We already have 15 organisations and individuals in the new directory who are benefitting from this initiative, but we’re always keen to hear from others who may benefit from these waste items. If you are a member of a not-for-profit organisation or are simply an individual who can make use of the items in the list, please contact us at or visit our website at

You can also find out more information about our Win on Waste® sessions on the website or by liking our Facebook page or following us on Twitter.”

The ‘We Need That – Dorset’ reuse directory can be downloaded and/or printed online.

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Categories: Dorset

Dorchester Town Centre master plan – have your say!

Dorset For You - Mon, 10/22/2018 - 10:05

We are inviting local residents and businesses to comment on the development of a Dorchester town centre master plan. Pop in at any time to the Council offices at South Walks House, Dorchester to view the work in progress on the following dates:

Thursday 15 November – 6pm – 9pm [Presentations by Feria Urbanism at 6:30pm and 8pm] 

Friday 16 November – 10am – 4pm [Presentations at 10:30am, 12:30pm and 2:30pm]

Saturday 17 November – 10am – 1pm Presentations at 10:30am and 12pm]

A  comprehensive approach

The master plan aims to take a comprehensive approach to the future of the town centre.  Organisations will need to work together and this is why an overarching town centre master plan is important. The master plan will address:

  • Public realm and signage
  • Parking 
  • Traffic and transport 
  • Environmental impacts
  • Accessibility
  • Key development sites

Cllr Anthony Alford, leader of West Dorset District Council, said: “We are excited about re-invigorating our beautiful, culturally and archaeologically rich County Town. The master plan will ensure that Members and officers across our partner local authorities are all working towards the same vision.”

Building on our past for a better future

Joined up working with our communities means we will reap the benefits for generations to come. Cllr John Russell, Chairman of the Dorchester Town Centre member working group, said: “We need to allow the town to respond flexibly to future site proposals. It’s important to remember that the master plan strategy involves the whole town centre and not just sites earmarked for development.

“This consultation will allow the people of Dorchester and surrounding villages to have their say on what the vision for Dorchester should be.”

Cultural investment

Cllr Mary Penfold, Portfolio Holder for Enabling, said: “Dorchester deserves to be an exciting destination that isn’t simply defined by its retail offer. Culturally, the town is having a “moment”. There is multi-million pound investment in Dorset County Museum. Shire Hall has opened to raving reviews. Work continues on how we can revitalise the Charter Market and other key sites.”

A compelling vision for the town

Richard Eastham, Director of Feria Urbanism – the company tasked with writing the town centre master plan – said: “We want to make it clear that this is the early stages of the master plan. Any master plan is doomed to fail unless it takes in to account the views of its communities. The plan won’t provide new answers to unlocking the challenging development sites within the town. But it can present a compelling vision for the whole town that can cast these opportunity sites in a new light.”

We will be creating a digital survey to compliment the consultation drop-in events. This will be launched closer to the time of the events.

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Categories: Dorset

Three successful prosecutions for the Dorset Waste Partnership in recent weeks

Dorset For You - Fri, 10/19/2018 - 12:26

The Dorset Waste Partnership (DWP) has sent a strong message to those who break the law when dealing with their rubbish; waste crimes are actively being tackled, and you could end up with a fine or in court.

In recent weeks, DWP Enforcement Officers, aided by Dorset County Council’s (DCC) legal team, have successfully prosecuted three different people for crimes related to fly-tipping and duty of care.

Richard Moulding, 24 of Wimborne, had been advertising waste disposal and gardening services on Facebook in December 2017. The resident had contacted him to remove some waste during a house move. Mr. Moulding agreed a price of £30 and removed the waste in a small van. Mr Moulding did not provide a Waste Transfer Note (a receipt of what the waste consisted of, who picked it up and where it was going).  However, the resident did note the vehicle registration number of the vehicle Mr Moulding was using.

Two days later, a fly-tip was reported to the DWP in Colehill. Enforcement Officers investigated, found evidence linking the waste to the resident and subsequently traced Mr. Moulding a few weeks later.

After Mr. Moulding ignored a requirement from the DWP to attend an interview, Dorset Police officers arrested him. He denied collecting and fly-tipping the waste.

However, at Poole Magistrates Court on 11 October, Mr. Moulding pleaded guilty to Unauthorised Deposit of Controlled Waste (fly-tipping) and an offence of failure to provide information during the investigation (by failing to attend the interview.) He was fined £240 with costs awarded of £500. He was also ordered to pay compensation to the complainant of £30 and a victim surcharge of £30.

In March 2018 Kay Higton, 67 of Ferndown, was contacted by the DWP’s Enforcement Team as bin collection crews suspected large amounts of commercial waste were being produced at her home address. While Ms. Higton confirmed that a business was run from her premises, she failed to produce any waste transfer notes from a commercial waste service provider and was subsequently issued with a Fixed Penalty Notice (FPN) by enforcement officers.

The DWP then received a phone call from Ms. Higton who stated she would not pay the FPN and would be happy to go to court. Despite a further and final reminder to pay the FPN, Ms. Higton refused and was taken to court by the DWP and DCC.

Ms Higton pleaded not guilty but following a trial at Poole Magistrates Court on the 11 October, she was found guilty by the court of failing to produce the waste transfer notes as required. She was fined £600, costs awarded of £600 and paid a victim surcharge of £60.

In May 2018, DWP Enforcement Officers were on duty at the Ashley Heath Weighbridge on the A31. As part of a multi-agency operation, the officers were working with various partner agencies including the Dorset Police. People driving those vehicles carrying waste that were stopped by the police were then checked by DWP officers for appropriate licencing.

Alfred Leslie Wilks, 42 of Ringwood, was driving a Mazda van containing a large quantity of differing types of flooring and packaging that he confirmed was waste from his job as a floor layer. As he did not have a Waste Carriers Licence, he was issued with an FPN which he subsequently failed to pay.

On 4 October, Mr. Wilks was found guilty at Poole Magistrates Court in his absence, of having no Waste Carriers Licence. He was fined £400, cost awarded of £842.50 and a victim surcharge of £40.

Jeremy Gallagher, Enforcement Officer at the Dorset Waste Partnership, said:

“The DWP hopes that these successful prosecutions send a clear message to those people who try to dispose of waste illegally. But we also want members of the public, including business owners, to be aware of their duty of care when producing waste and/or handing it to somewhere else.

If you hand your waste to someone else for disposal, make sure they have a Waste Carriers Licence and get a Waste Transfer Note. If you operate a business, even if it’s based at home, and you produce waste, you need to have a commercial waste collection arranged. We’ve got lots of useful information as part of our anti-flytipping campaign, Tip-Off.

And remember – if the DWP issues you with an FPN and you fail to pay it in time, you could end up in court.”

You can find more information about the DWP’s Tip-Off campaign at Dorset For You.

Business owners can find out more about their duty of care when it comes to waste online.

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Categories: Dorset