New Public Spaces Protection Order for Weymouth and Portland

Dorset For You - Fri, 08/17/2018 - 12:58

New rules set out in the Weymouth & Portland Anti-Social Behaviour Related Public Spaces Protection Order (PSPO) 2018 come into effect on Monday 20 August.

PSPO introduced by Weymouth & Portland Borough Council

The PSPO will be in place in restricted areas within the borough of Weymouth and in Easton Square, Portland. They relate to begging, cycling on the promenade, feeding gulls and the consumption of alcohol in public places.

This follows views expressed in a public consultation and approval given at by Weymouth & Portland Borough Council.

New signs have been placed around the borough to make people aware of the PSPO and maps explaining where the rules apply can be viewed on

The provisions contained within the PSPO will complement Police and other council measures as well as the multi-agency funded Community Safety Accreditation Scheme which is soon to be launched.

Cycling along the promenade

Rules on cycling along the promenade will be relaxed, now only restricting cycling between 10am and 5.30pm from Good Friday to 31 October annually (both dates inclusive). Right of way will remain with pedestrians.

Consuming alcohol in public places

Within the restricted areas, the PSPO will make it an offence to continue to consume alcohol where a constable or authorised officer has directed someone not to do so, in the reasonable belief that such a direction is necessary to prevent public nuisance, public order or anti-social behaviour.

A constable or authorised officer can require anyone to surrender anything which they believe to be alcohol or a container for alcohol. Fixed Penalty Notices may be issued if there is no reasonable excuse not to comply with the requirement.

Intentional feeding of gulls

Within the restricted areas, the PSPO will make it an offence for any person to provide or deposit food, intentionally, for the consumption of gulls. This measure has been introduced to help tackle the growing problem of gulls causing alarm, annoyance and injury.


New rules banning begging within the restricted area, will also be introduced. Begging issues have been identified by the borough council, police, residents and shop owners, over the last few years.

Responses to the public consultation made it clear, measures are wanted to deter begging in the town centre. Begging is already prohibited on the promenade under local Byelaws.

Cllr Mike Byatt, Community Safety Briefholder at Weymouth & Portland Borough Council, said:

“We understand the difficulties of situations that lead individuals to begging, and will continue to be sensitive to people genuinely in need of our support. However, Fixed Penalty Notices will be available if there is no other alternative to tackle the problem.

“The aim of these measures is simple. We want our lovely public spaces kept free from anti-social behaviour, so they can be enjoyed by all.

“I am especially pleased that cycling in the summer during quieter periods will now be welcomed along the promenade, as we are keen to do what we can to promote fitness and physical activity.”

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Categories: Dorset

What is a Local Plan Review?

Dorset For You - Fri, 08/17/2018 - 10:11

West Dorset and Weymouth & Portland Councils have begun consulting on the ‘Preferred Options’ for their Joint Local Plan Review. Find out what a local plan review is and why it’s taking place.

Local Plan Review: Have your say What is a local plan?

 The Local Plan sets the overarching vision, strategic priorities and policies for development growth in the plan area.

It identifies land to meet future Housing, Employment, Health and Retail needs and guides decisions about future development.

Why are we reviewing the plan?

 The current local plan was adopted by West Dorset District Council and by Weymouth & Portland Borough Council in October 2015. Although it’s only a short time since the joint Local Plan came into effect, national policy requires a complete a review of the plan every five years.

This review needs to identify additional land capable of meeting housing needs. This means providing enough sites to enable the development of 15,880 homes by 2036.

Why 15,880 Homes?

 The Government have introduced a standard approach to calculating housing numbers. This is based on the increase in population and the affordability of homes in the area. The target for the plan area is 794 homes per year. The councils are required to deliver this level of growth.

This local plan review covers the period from 2016 to 2036 – a 20 year period. The plan therefore needs to make provision for a minimum of 15,880 new dwellings. The Preferred Options identifies sites for 19,000 homes which is significantly above the identified need.

What are the Preferred Options?

We consulted on a wide range of potential sites through an Issues & Options public consultation in early 2017. Taking account of comments received from the general public, landowners and infrastructure providers as well as new evidence a preferred set of sites have now been identified.

We are now asking for views on these preferred sites, which are located at:

  • Wyke Oliver Farm, Weymouth
  • West of Southill, Chickerell
  • Former Tented Camp on Mandeville Road, Weymouth
  • Land North of Dorchester
  • Land West of Charminster
  • Crossways
  • Beaminster
  • Woodberry Down extension, Lyme Regis
  • Extension to Barton Farm, Sherborne
  • North and South of Bradford Road, Sherborne
Why should I comment?

The preferred options consultation is your opportunity to have a say on the preferred approach for future development. The information and insight provided by the consultation will be used to inform councillor decision making.

Once approved, the policies set out in the plan will be the starting point for making decisions on planning applications. We need to ensure new homes and businesses are in the locations that meet the needs of the growing population, but also respect Dorset’s special environment.

The consultation material is available on our website where you will also find a form through which you can submit your comments Our email address is The feedback we receive will influence the final decisions we take.

When can I have my say?

You can have your say right now. Have a look through the proposals set out in our ‘Preferred Options’ document.

Following this, send us your comments through our consultation form online, by email or post.

If you’ve got any questions before sending in your response, come down to one of our roadshow events. These are also taking place across the area. You’ll be able to see maps of the preferred options, speak with our planning officers and ask any question you may have about the review.

Roadshow events: Location Date Time Sherborne, Digby Memorial Hall Wednesday 29 August 10am to 7pm Portland, St Georges Centre Thursday 30 August 10am to 7pm Dorchester, South Walks House Friday 31 August 10am to 7pm Crossways, Village Hall Tuesday 4 September 10am to 7pm Charminster, Village Hall Thursday 6 September 10am to 7pm Beaminster, Town Hall Friday 7 September 10am to 7pm Lyme Regis, Woodmead Hall Monday 10 September 10am to 7pm Weymouth, Redlands Sport Centre Wednesday 12 September 10am to 7pm Bridport, Leisure Centre Thursday 13 September 10am to 7pm Chickerell, Willowbed Hall Friday 14th September 10am to 7pm


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Categories: Dorset

Repairs to Dorset’s hidden medieval bridge

Dorset For You - Thu, 08/16/2018 - 17:00

In Lyme Regis, hidden under the road and only properly seen from the riverbed, lies the third oldest bridge in Dorset.

Buddle Bridge is a single span bridge with four equally spaced, pointed segmental, ashlar ribs –  most likely dating from the early 14th century.

Since 1998, Dorset Highways has been working towards replacing load-bearing stonework, which has eroded to the point of failure and is essential to the bridge’s survival.

Condition of the bridge

Looking downstream, the second and fourth ribs were replaced in 1971. The originals were

missing (presumably having collapsed a long time ago) with the springer stones worn back to the abutments by the elements. The replacement ribs remain in good condition.

The remaining two, original ribs are extremely weathered; to the extent that, in parts, only 50% of the original section is estimated to remain. Previous repairs to sections of the ribs are visible and some of these repairs are also damaged. Other parts of the original stonework to the ribs were found to be cracked and delaminated.

If either of these ribs were to collapse the structure probably would remain supported by the three remaining ribs, but there might be further localised collapse of the main arch barrel – risking damage to the road over the bridge, which is the main route through Lyme Regis.

The road to repair

The original scheme was to replace the worn stones in two of the arch ribs and strengthen the concrete footway adjacent to the bridge. In 1998, Listed Building Consent (LBC) was granted for this work but budget constraints forced the work to be cancelled.

The reinforced concrete footway was eventually rebuilt in 2007. In 2015, a re-application for LBC was submitted for the arch rib work but was rejected because it was considered that too much of the original, historic material was to be removed.

After further reports by archaeologists and consultant conservation engineers it was proposed to only replace the missing or badly eroded parts of the arch rib stones, leaving as much of the original stonework as possible.

Though losing some of the sense of age from weathered stonework, it was agreed this approach would retain the bridge’s considerable historical and archaeological significance, as well as preserving any aesthetic value by keeping the shape and form of the structure.

So, 17 years into the project, the next challenge was finding a suitable material to use as replacement stones in the arch rib.

The original stone was identified as Salcombe Stone, which is no longer commercially quarried. As it was known that Exeter Cathedral uses this type of stone (along with 25 other types), the Clerk of Works for the cathedral restoration was contacted. He confirmed that only five cubic metres of Salcombe Stone is quarried each year and it is all stored for use at the cathedral.

After long discussions between engineers, planning consent officers and England Heritage, the use of Purbeck Inland Freestone as a substitute for Salcombe Stone was accepted, as it represented an ‘honest’ repair – being obvious though not too obvious.

Carrying out the repairs

At last, work started in July 2018 to replace three stone blocks in the first rib and repair 19 stone blocks in the first and third rib.

Repairs to the bridge will be finished by the end of this month (August).

Manhandling the stone into position Repair work, looking downstream left Repair work, looking downstream right

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Categories: Dorset

Residential development of up to 140 homes approved

Dorset For You - Thu, 08/16/2018 - 16:49

A development for up to 140 homes on land to the north-west of Crossways has been approved by West Dorset District Council’s Planning Committee today.

Indicative illustration of the proposed development north-west of Crossways

The proposed development is on land identified for housing in the West Dorset, Weymouth and Portland Local Plan Preferred Options, which is currently the subject of public consultation. The land is currently used for agricultural purposes.

The site was previously granted outline planning permission in 2016 for a similarly described proposal with 85 dwellings. This has since increased by an additional 55 dwellings with 35% being assigned as affordable housing.

The development will include; associated infrastructure, access onto Frome Valley Road, children’s play space and landscaping.

The proposal also includes a large area of open space (5.62 hectares) which is seen as an environmental benefit that is supported by Natural England and Dorset Wildlife Trust.

Cllr Ian Gardner, West Dorset District Council’s Portfolio Holder for Planning, said: “We welcome the outline approval of a further West Dorset housing scheme; a development which is already identified in our preferred options consultation document.

“Not only will this development help us meet the 5 Year Land Supply target it will also provide a significant open space for the benefit of Crossways residents.”

West Dorset District Council together with Weymouth & Portland Borough Council and North Dorset District Council want to see 20,000 more homes built in the combined area by 2033 under the Opening Doors campaign. This approved application will help to achieve this shared goal.

Cllr Tim Yarker, West Dorset District Council’s Portfolio Holder for Housing, said: “Like many areas, West Dorset has a housing shortage. Opening Doors aims to encourage developers and bring more housing schemes forward.

“So far we have had a brilliant result from residents signing up to the Home Ownership Register and it has provided us with essential insight on the local housing need.”

Click here to sign up to the Home Ownership Register and receive regular housing development updates in your area.

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Categories: Dorset

New bins for Bargates and Christchurch High Street

Dorset For You - Thu, 08/16/2018 - 14:10

Christchurch High Street and Bargates will see litter bins replaced later this month.

Christchurch Borough Council are working with the Dorset Waste Partnership (DWP) to replace the current bins with larger 240 litre wheelie-type bins. Fewer bins will be installed, although their visibility will be more prominent within the area, and they will reduce the need for using bin bags and liners. The new bins collectively will increase the waste capacity in the High Street and Bargates by 20%.

Jonathan Ross, Property, Engineering and Car Parks Manager for Christchurch and East Dorset Councils, said: “Many of the current litter bins on the High Street and in Bargates are in a poor condition and need replacing, so I am pleased that ten new bins will be installed by mid-September.

“The new, larger bins were chosen by councillors to meet the needs of the borough and have animal proof lids. This should have a positive impact on keeping the High Street and Bargates clear of litter.

“Christchurch is a beautiful place which is enjoyed by both residents and visitors, and is especially busy during the summer months. We hope that the public continue to take care of Christchurch by using these new bins responsibly.”

Bin replacement work will begin on 27 August 2018.

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Categories: Dorset

5 things you need to know about the Weymouth Peninsula development – part one of three

Dorset For You - Thu, 08/16/2018 - 12:50

As we take the Peninsula outline planning application through the official planning process, now is a good time to highlight some key points, answer some commonly asked questions and bust some development myths.

The existing Weymouth Peninsula site

This is the first in a three part series that aims to address some of the more commonly asked questions about the Peninsula development. Stay tuned for part two which will be uploaded next week.

  1. What is currently happening?

The outline planning application will soon be assessed by the planning team. Key stakeholders and members of the public have submitted their comments and any points that relate to the application will be reviewed before the application is taken to Planning Committee. At this point the application will be judged on its own merits and in accordance with official planning policy.

2. What is an outline planning application?

Applications for outline planning permission seek to establish whether the scale and nature of a proposed development would be acceptable to the local planning authority, before a fully detailed proposal is put forward. It does not include detailed design, e.g. the colour or look of the buildings, where disabled parking spaces will be, or what leisure companies might be on the site. These points will be considered at a later date.

3. What are the Council’s considerations in its role as developer and planning authority?

The considerations are completely separate. Officers involved with the development of the Peninsula proposals are within the Assets and Infrastructure Service and have no involvement with processing the planning application. Members of the Council’s Planning Committee will judge the application on its merits in due course.

4. Why does the council wish to develop the site?

This important and high-profile site has become rundown and needs regenerating. The Peninsula proposals have gone through multiple periods of public engagement and have received input from leading market experts, as well as local businesses and stakeholders.

The decision to follow a leisure-led scheme was taken by the council’s management committee in 2016. It was informed by expert reports, consultation results and accords with the council’s policies.

The outline planning application submitted in May 2018 is consistent with the town centre Masterplan’s overarching aim, and shared vision, of transforming the town into a year-round destination.

5. Is the scheme viable?

Yes, the financial case has been investigated and modeled by the council’s consultants Cushman & Wakefield to ensure it is viable and realistic, with a clear long term return for the council through rents and leasehold agreements. This is why it is important to have a mix of leisure, restaurants, hotels and public space on the site.

We will be uploading a series of FAQ newsroom posts as the Peninsula development progresses to make it easy to stay updated and informed. Part two will be posted early next week, so watch this space.

To stay up-to-date with Council news please subscribe to the resident newsletter or follow us on twitter.

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Categories: Dorset

Radipole Park and Gardens 1940’s Family Fun Day

Dorset For You - Thu, 08/16/2018 - 11:46

Friends of Radipole Park and Gardens are holding a FREE 1940’s Family Fun Day on Saturday 25 August from 12-4pm.

1940’s Family Fun Day on Saturday

Families will be able to enjoy some fantastic entertainment, including a chance to ride a miniature steam train, view an array of WW2 army vehicles and listen to live music from the Decadettes and the Mill Street Jazz Band. There will also be a performance from the Amberlights Majorettes.

There will be a range of stalls to peruse as well as a variety of food and refreshments available. Children will be kept entertained by collecting stamps in their free ‘Ration Book’ as well as enjoying the selection of games, face painting and free storytelling.

The event has been funded as part of a first stage Heritage Lottery bid.  The funding will also enable Weymouth & Portland Borough Council to draw up exciting new plans to restore the park, including the installation of a new heritage centre, café and toilets as well as upgrading the play area.

Historic connection to WW2

The 1940’s theme marks Radipole Park and Garden’s connection to WW2, as the playing fields were used as a US Army base in the lead up to D-Day. There will be a heritage tent displaying old photos where visitors can come and learn more about this as well as discover how the park came to be.

We will also be seeking any memories you may have of Radipole Park, which will be collated as part of a Living History Box and may be used on the wall of the Heritage Centre.

Don’t forget to encourage the whole family to dress up in 1940’s style as there will be some amazing prizes for the best costume, including a family ticket to Weymouth’s Sandworld.

The Big Prize Draw has some great prizes to win, including a romantic night away for two in a famous Lulworth hotel, a selection of vouchers for drinks and meals out, free entry into local attractions and much more!

Cllr Kate Wheller, Brief Holder for Community Facilities at Weymouth & Portland Borough Council, comments: “It’s so important to recognise the connection that our local area has to historic events, and this fun packed day is a great way to learn more about the history of Radipole Park and Gardens.

The Friends Group and Weymouth & Portland Borough Council have worked very hard to help secure vital funds to preserve and develop this beautiful, historic park, and I urge everyone to come and support this event.”

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Categories: Dorset

Surface dressing in Gillingham

Dorset For You - Thu, 08/16/2018 - 09:56

Dorset Highways surface dressing gang will soon be arriving in Gillingham – its last stop of this season.

Surface dressing is a preventative treatment to prolong the life of roads by providing a waterproof seal, it also improves skid resistance.

The gang will stop off at Kington Magna before arriving in Gillingham – where 28 roads are programmed for treatment – on Monday or Tuesday (depending on weather).

The surface dressing gang will be working 9am to 4pm, with roads closed for around one to two hours, depending on the length of the road.

Residents are being asked to look out for yellow advance warning signs and to move their vehicles off the road before 9am on the date on the sign. Drivers should also check that the road they move their vehicle to is not also being treated on that day.

Martin Hill, Dorset Highways network operations manager, said: “We have to work under a road closure to fit all our equipment into the space – two purpose built chipping spreaders, one spray tanker and lorries feeding chippings.

“We know this will cause inconvenience but please bear with us – surface dressing really is a quick process. If you’ve got any concerns during the works, please speak to the guys on site who will do what they can to help.

“Please can parents ensure that children keep clear of any machinery being used, and everyone might find it useful to check footwear before entering your house as construction materials are, by nature, dirty.”

An advisory temporary 20mph speed limit is signed after the work due to the loose stones. Travelling at this reduced speed will prevent skidding on the chippings and help ‘bed down’ the material.

The road is swept for excess stones one to two days after the work, and white lining reinstatement follows on from this around a week or so later.

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Categories: Dorset

Hurn Roundabout work will go into October

Dorset For You - Wed, 08/15/2018 - 16:00

Delays in utility diversions at Hurn Roundabout will see the project finish in October rather than September, as originally programmed.

Although work is steadily progressing with the roundabout improvements, delays to SSE cable diversion work starting has had a knock-on effect on the remaining highway construction work.

On Sunday 19 August SSE will work overnight to divert the high voltage cable, with three-way temporary traffic lights in place at the roundabout.

On Thursday 23 August SSE will work overnight to divert the low voltage cable, with the roundabout closed to all traffic from 8pm on the Thursday evening.

Councillor Daryl Turner, Cabinet member for the natural and built environment, said: “I’m pleased that we now have confirmed dates for the electricity cable diversions. Although the construction work involved in this project seems minimal it has been extremely complex due to the high number of utilities in the area – which have to be moved away from the new alignment of the roundabout.

“We appreciate that it is incredibly frustrating for residents and drivers that the scheme will continue longer than expected, and we will continue to assess our traffic management as work progresses to minimise disruption wherever possible.”

Utility work – carried out by the respective companies – completed to date includes:

  • new BT ducting at the Pussex Lane junction
  • new BT and SSE ducts and chambers installed along Christchurch Road
  • new BT and SSE ducts and chambers installed along Avon Causeway
  • new BT chambers within the roundabout

When the SSE work is finished the remaining construction work will be completed:

  • carriageway and footway widening on Christchurch Road and Avon Causeway
  • construction of new splitter islands and roundabout
  • carriageway and footway resurfacing

Construction work completed to date includes:

  • construction of a temporary scaffolding footbridge to maintain pedestrian and cyclist access (while we replace the bridge decking and parapets of the footbridge over the Moors River)
  • new footway partially complete at the Pussex Lane junction
  • excavation in preparation for carriageway and footway widening along Christchurch Road
  • excavation in preparation for carriageway and footway widening along Avon Causeway

Work has also started on the construction of the new footpath link between Hurn Post Office and Hurn Bridge Sports Club.

The delay means that this work will be coinciding with the next phase of the A338/Blackwater Junction improvements which will start at the beginning of September 2018. These major improvement works will create extra lane capacity from Blackwater Junction towards Cooper Dean roundabout to reduce delays and improve journey times and will take approximately ten months to complete.

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Categories: Dorset

Good vibrations in Wool

Dorset For You - Wed, 08/15/2018 - 15:03

Construction work at Wool bridge is underway. Although work started on 2 July, so far it has focussed on removing the damaged stonework and clearing the site, until now.

This week, the complex engineering work to stabilise, protect and repair the Grade II Listed structure got underway.

A row of 44 sheet piles has been set into place as a wall of steel to protect the bridge from undermining by the river. These piles will also support a new concrete arch and wall, which will be built over the coming weeks.

The piles are four metres long and designed with an additional sacrificial thickness of steel to meet the 120 year design life – though as they will be completely submerged they are expected to last considerably longer.

When the piles have been pushed fully into the riverbed, the team on site will start to prepare the underside of the bridge – levelling the surface – and will also build temporary supports (centring) for the southern-most main arch so that one of the dislodged arch stones can be re-set.

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Categories: Dorset

Illegal waste carriers and fly-tippers targeted in Purbeck

Dorset For You - Wed, 08/15/2018 - 13:54

Early-morning spot-checks of vans have been taking place in Purbeck in a bid to catch people who illegally transport or dump rubbish.

The joint operation was a Dorset Rural Crime Partnership initiative with Dorset Police, Purbeck District Council and the Environment Agency participating.

During the operation, which took place on the A31 near Bere Regis on Friday 10 August, officers stopped a number of vehicles, including vans, lorries and flatbed trucks. Checks were made by each organisation on load carried, waste carrier licences, mobile collecting licences, driving documents and vehicle condition.

A range of businesses was checked, including demolition and construction, window fitters and landscape gardening. Drivers were dealt with for offences such as bald tyres, no insurance and not being in possession of a waste carriers licence.

Councillor Bill Pipe, Communities and Involvement Portfolio Holder for Purbeck District Council, said: “Most people go about their business safely and legally. However there are unscrupulous people on our roads, some carrying waste that is later fly-tipped, causing a blight on our landscape and taxpayers’ money to remove.

“Officers are keen to crack down on the number of unlicensed waste carriers or vehicles transporting controlled waste as these are linked to fly-tipping, burglary and other environmental crime.”

Councillor Pipe continued: “This is a reminder that if you employ someone to take away your waste, check they have the necessary licences to dispose of it legally. Anyone who cannot provide the correct paperwork is not worth risking giving your money to.”

PC Claire Dinsdale of Dorset Police Rural Crime Team stated “The Rural Crime Partnership has increased the sharing of intelligence between agencies and will continue to target suspect vehicles and fly-tipping hotspots.

“Fly-tipping is a serious concern for many farmers and landowners who are left with huge clear up costs if a fly tip occurs on their land.  Fly-tips also occur on the highways and the estimated cost of fly tipping for the taxpayer was £57.7 million *between 2016/2017. It is potentially hazardous, unsightly and a danger to wildlife and livestock.”

An Environment Agency spokesperson said: “Fly-tipping is a crime and poses a threat to people and wildlife, and damages the environment. It undermines legitimate waste businesses where illegal operators undercut those operating within the law.”

Although further spot checks are planned, the Council and Police are asking people to remain vigilant to prevent fly tipping:

  • If an organisation offers to dispose of your waste on your behalf, you should check they are an authorised waste carrier. You can do this on the Environment Agency’s website. If they do not have one a licence, they are not legally permitted to take your waste away and if the waste is fly-tipped you could face prosecution.
  • If you see a fly-tipping incident in progress, call the Police on 999. Try to obtain the vehicle registration and description of those involved. If you locate a fly-tip, please report to your council. You can do this online at or telephone your local council.

If you have information about someone illegally collecting waste or fly tipping, report in confidence on the dedicated rural crime reporting line with NFU and CrimeStoppers 0800 783 0137 or by visiting

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Categories: Dorset

Dorset joins national scheme to improve children’s social care

Dorset For You - Wed, 08/15/2018 - 11:17

Dorset County Council is teaming up with another local authority as part of a Government initiative to improve children’s social care across the country.

Partners in Practice gives councils the opportunity to work together and share best practice to strengthen the way they support the most vulnerable children.

Dorset will be working with Essex County Council – one of the leading authorities for children’s social care – as part of its own plan to improve and modernise its services.

Over the last year, Dorset has introduced measures to strengthen its own practice, including:
• a unique staff development programme called Reinvigorating Social Work
• a £1m investment to recruit more children’s social workers and help reduce caseloads and make them manageable
• a rigorous audit programme to look at cases and improve social care practice

Funded by the Department for Education, the peer support from Essex County Council will further strengthen work that is already underway in Dorset.

Cllr Steve Butler, Cabinet member for safeguarding at Dorset County Council, said:

“Protecting vulnerable children is a top priority for the county council and we’re committed to offering the best, and most responsive, support to children and their families as best we can.

“We’re working hard to improve the way we deliver children’s social care, which is why we wanted to join this programme. Essex County Council has a great track record and we’re looking forward to learning from their experiences and continuing developing our own practice here in Dorset.”

Officers from Essex will initially join the council at the end of August and will spend a total of 40 non-consecutive days in Dorset.

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Categories: Dorset

Public engagement event – Dorchester’s Town Centre Masterplan

Dorset For You - Tue, 08/14/2018 - 15:57

Following on from last years popular event, we are organising another public event next Wednesday 22 and Thursday 23 August. The event will take place at the West Dorset District Council offices, South Walks House, Dorchester.

The format of the event will be a presentation, followed by a Question and Answer session.

The timings are as follows: Wednesday 22 August at 6pm Thursday 23 August at 4:30pm and 6pm

All the events will have the same presentation shown, so you need only attend one. We will also be recording the event on Wednesday to upload for anyone who wishes to view the presentation but cannot attend.

Cllr Tony Alford, Leader of West Dorset District Council, “We understand there is a lot of public interest in the Dorchester Town Centre masterplan. There has been a great deal of work done on the many strands that make up the masterplan. We want to use this event to update the public on our progress over the last 12 months, and give the opportunity to ask questions.”

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Categories: Dorset

Hazelbury Bryan Parish Council submits Neighbourhood Plan

Dorset For You - Tue, 08/14/2018 - 15:40

Hazelbury Bryan Parish Council has submitted a neighbourhood plan to North Dorset District Council.

Plans approved

The plan sets out a range of planning policies including policies that allocate sites for development.

It has been submitted to North Dorset District Council to arrange for an independent examiner to assess it.

The district council is required to publicly consult on the plan. The plan, supporting documents, and response form can be accessed online via

You can also view the plan at Sturminster Newton Library, Bath Road, Sturminster Newton and the district council’s office at Nordon Lodge, 58 Salisbury Road, Blandford Forum during normal opening hours.

All comments must be received by 4pm on Friday 21 September 2018. These comments will then be sent to the examiner along with the plan. Depending on the examiner’s report, a referendum will be held for the residents of Hazelbury Bryan to decide whether the plan should be approved.

Cllr Graham Carr-Jones, Leader of North Dorset District Council, said:

“It is positive news that the Hazelbury Bryan Neighbourhood Plan has been submitted to the district council. Its submission is the result of a huge amount of hard work by all those involved in producing the plan.

“I would strongly encourage anyone with an interest in the future of Hazelbury Bryan to have their say on the submitted plan.”

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Categories: Dorset

Seafront Lighting Scheme unanimously approved by members

Dorset For You - Tue, 08/14/2018 - 11:51

The proposed new artistic lighting scheme for Weymouth’s promenade moved a step closer today, after the scheme was approved by Management Committee.

Incorporating community feedback

The scheme has been designed by award-winning design studio Tonkin Liu in conjunction with officers, and incorporates community feedback from two rounds of extensive consultation facilitated by Dorset Coast Forum and Bounce Back Arts CIC. It will now be drawn up into a formal planning application, to be heard by Planning Committee later this Autumn.

Unique scheme for Weymouth

Project Co-ordinator for the Dorset Coastal Connections Portfolio Natalie Poulter said, “We’re delighted that this project has been approved by Management Committee today. This scheme will be unique to Weymouth and will improve the atmosphere on the promenade, making it welcoming and attractive; we’re pleased councillors can see this potential. We’ve listened carefully to the community throughout and have altered the proposed display as a result of what we’ve heard – the approved scheme shows warm, gently moving colour, which is as light as possible with minimal darkness, which reflects the preferences and concerns people talked to us about.”

Celebrating the beautiful bay

Cllr Richard Kosior Weymouth & Portland Borough Council Briefholder for Tourism, Culture and Harbour, said; “Today members took a step forward in supporting this innovative lighting project, which celebrates the rhythms and colours of our beautiful Bay. Weymouth is a historic town with a rich heritage, but it also has a future. This scheme gives the town an exciting opportunity to embrace this future.”

Spring 2019 completion

Today’s Management Committee decision is subject to a 5 day call-in period, and will be finalised next week. The decision to approve this project means it is on schedule, subject to obtaining planning consent, to be completed in Spring 2019.

The Weymouth Promenade Artistic Lighting Scheme is part of Dorset Coastal Connections, a portfolio of 18 connected projects which aim to improve physical, digital and emotional connections to the coast in Dorset, supporting and growing the local economy. Dorset Coastal Connections is a partnership portfolio supported by the Coastal Communities Fund; Weymouth’s proposed artistic lighting scheme is 100% funded by this grant.

For further information on the Weymouth Promenade Artistic Lighting scheme and all of the Dorset Coastal Connections portfolio see

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Categories: Dorset

Members agree a way forward for improving toilets in Weymouth

Dorset For You - Tue, 08/14/2018 - 11:26
On Tuesday 14 August, members unanimously agreed to a plan of action for improving facilities in Weymouth toilets along the Esplanade. To progress with detailed design works, officers asked members to consider a report for an agreed way forward. The report set out various options for review. Importance of public conveniences Cllr Kate Wheller, briefholder for Community Facilities, said: “We understand the importance that public conveniences play in supporting the vibrancy of the town centre and the beach. We have placed great emphasis on accessibility within the plans. This includes the provision of a family room and new accessible ground-level toilets. “We are confident the plans will go through the planning process before the new Unitary authority comes to fruition in April next year.” British Toilet Association Report Last summer, we gave members a report from the British Toilet Association [BTA]. The report provided recommendations to improve the current facilities. One of the key  recommendations was to provide a new/improved facility in the central seafront area. Approved option 4a – what will happen?
  • 22 new unisex toilets above ground
  • New beach showers
  • New family room
  • New accessible toilets
  • Extending the beach office facility
  • Changing Places toilet will remain unaltered
  • Single storey extension that will incorporate two small lettable spaces. This will include a beach-facing kiosk and a small multi-purpose street frontage space
Estimated costs are between £370,000 and £424,000* Planning permissions needed The option will go through the usual planning route. We expect to submit the planning application by the end of September. We have had initial discussions with planning and conservation officers. The officers have suggested they are sympathetic to proposals to extend the building. Any proposal will of course need to be in-keeping with the existing look and feel of the area. *costs are based on typical guide values for m2 as well as recent tender returns. These costs are construction estimates at this stage. No actual prices will be available until we have gone through procurement and we have received tenders.

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Categories: Dorset

Final surface dressing in Blandford

Dorset For You - Tue, 08/14/2018 - 09:22

Surface dressing will finish in Blandford this week and will be moving north to Gillingham.

During the work in Blandford, the Norden Car Park on Salisbury Road (old district council offices car park) will be open to help alleviate parking problems in the town centre.

Work completed last week, commencing Monday 6 August:


Work proposed (weather permitting) week commencing Monday 13 August:


Work scheduled (weather permitting) for week commencing 20 August:


Our surface dressing gang is working 9am to 4pm in urban areas and 8am to 4pm in rural areas.

Look out for yellow signs two days before work starts – please move your vehicle off the road before 9am and check that the road you move it to is not also being treated.

Surface dressing doesn’t take long and the road can be driven on as soon as it’s finished. Depending on the length of the road you live on, the road will be closed for around 1-2 hours while the treatment takes place.

An advisory temporary 20mph speed limit is signed after the work due to the loose stones. Travelling at this reduced speed will prevent skidding on the chippings and help ‘bed down’ the material.

The road is swept for excess stones one to two days after the work, and white lining reinstatement follows on from this and a week or so later.

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Categories: Dorset

Christchurch Borough Council agree not to appeal Judicial Review

Dorset For You - Tue, 08/14/2018 - 08:40

Christchurch Borough Council has agreed not to submit an appeal to the Court of Appeal following the refusal of its Judicial Review application.

Cllr David Flagg, Leader of the Council, Christchurch Borough Council, said: “Having been refused leave to appeal by the judge it was important that the advice of Counsel and Officers was considered when deciding the best way forward. In light of the decision we feel that the best way for us to proceed is to focus our work on getting the best for our residents as we move towards local government reorganisation on 1 April 2019.

“Whilst we are of course extremely disappointed with the decision of the judge the Council has fought to represent the wishes of our residents throughout this process.

“Having pursued every avenue available to us we must now accept that the Council will be abolished next year. We apologise that we were not successful in keeping Christchurch independent and thank all the residents who supported us in our attempts.”

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Categories: Dorset

Local Plan Review: Have your say on future development sites

Dorset For You - Mon, 08/13/2018 - 11:02

West Dorset District Council and Weymouth & Portland Borough Council’s ‘Preferred Options’ document of their Joint Local Plan Review is now live.

Local Plan Review consultation now live


Residents as well as businesses, organisations and Statutory bodies will now have their opportunity to share their views in the next important phase of public consultation .


The West Dorset, Weymouth & Portland Local Plan was adopted in October 2015. The Inspector’s report, following the public examination of the plan, required an early review to be undertaken. This was in order to identify additional land capable of fulfilling the housing needs requirement to the end of its plan period and for the following five years – up to 2036.

The first part of the local plan review took place in early 2017 on the Issues and Options for the plan. Following the information gained from this consultation a ‘Preferred Options’ document has been produced.

Now you have the opportunity  to give us your views on the preferred options.

Have your say

You can have your say on the ‘Preferred Options’ during an eight week consultation until 8 October.

You can share your comments through our consultation form online, by email or post.

Our online form is available at:

A number of roadshow events have been arranged so you can talk to our Planning Officers about any questions or concerns you may have.

Roadshow events:  Location Date Time Sherborne, Digby Memorial Hall Wednesday 29 August 10am to 7pm Portland, St Georges Centre  Thursday 30 August 10am to 7pm Dorchester, South Walks House Friday 31 August 10am to 7pm Crossways, Village Hall Tuesday 4 September 10am to 7pm Charminster, Village Hall Thursday 6 September 10am to 7pm Beaminster, Town Hall Friday 7 September 10am to 7pm Lyme Regis, Woodmead Hall Monday 10 September 10am to 7pm Weymouth, Redlands Sport Centre Wednesday 12 September 10am to 7pm Bridport, Leisure Centre Thursday 13 September 10am to 7pm Chickerell, Willowbed Hall Friday 14 September 10am to 7pm

Cllr Ian Gardner, West Dorset District Council’s Portfolio Holder for Planning, said:

“Once approved, this Local Plan will form the blueprint for development in our area up to 2036.

“We would like to hear from as many people as possible to help us ensure that we identify and allocate the most suitable sites for development.”

Cllr Ray Nowak, Weymouth & Portland Borough Council’s Portfolio Holder for Environment and Sustainability, said:

“This consultation is a key part of the plan review. It allows residents, town and parish councils, community groups, businesses and landowners to have their say on development locations.

“I would urge anyone with an interest in the future of the areas to respond to the consultation and attend one of the drop-in sessions that have been arranged.

“All of the responses received will be fully considered and analysed prior to the council moving on to the next stage of the review process.”

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Categories: Dorset

Rural idyll enjoys future-proof broadband

Dorset For You - Fri, 08/10/2018 - 15:26

One of the most rural parts of the UK now has the fastest broadband following a long-running community campaign.

The Marshwood Vale lies in Dorset’s Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. The landscape is agricultural and consists of narrow lanes winding between farms that lie amongst small fields, old hedgerows, copses and ancient semi-natural woods.

Following a campaign begun over four years ago, almost 400 homes and businesses in this remote part of West Dorset now enjoy access to some of the UK’s fastest internet speeds.

In 2014 the community worked with local councils and put together a business case that secured more than £1 million of Government funding to improve broadband speeds for many properties in the vale.

Daryl Turner, Dorset County Council Cabinet Member for the Natural and Built Environment, said: “The vale wasn’t included in our initial roll-out plans, which focused on more densely-populated areas outside Openreach and Virgin Media’s commercial plans.

“However, the strength of feeling among residents and community leaders meant we wanted to work with the Marshwood Vale to deliver faster, more reliable broadband for many of those living and working in this stunning part of Dorset. The tremendous landscape in the vale made it an incredibly challenging build.”

The Superfast Dorset programme and delivery partner Openreach felt that only fibre to the premises (FTTP) technology – where a fibre optic cable is run directly into individual buildings – would work in this super-sparsely populated area.

When work began download speeds averaged around 1Mbps (megabit per second). The full fibre network available to many now allows speeds of 1Gbps (gigabit per second) and greater – one thousand times faster.

The future-proof speeds are available to many premises in areas such as Bettiscombe, Marshwood, Fishpond, Shave Cross, Blackdown, Burstock and Synderford.

Homes and businesses can check their broadband options at Those with access to full fibre must contact a FTTP broadband provider to get the faster speeds.

Charles Somers, Chairman of the Marshwood Broadband Group, said: “With the excellent cooperation of the Superfast Dorset Team and backed by strong support from our local MP, county, district and parish councillors, we succeeded in obtaining substantial funding to support a broadband network upgrade.

“The choice of FTTP has meant an enormous change to people and businesses here and will contribute to maintaining the future for our very rural area for a wide range of people living, working, studying and running businesses here. The upgrade has removed previous constraints for new business development and has contributed positively to the development of Neighbourhood Plans for the area which look forward 20 years: the FTTP broadband service really is a future proof solution for us.”

Emma Howarth, Programme Director for Openreach, said: “The Marshwood Vale is a beautiful part of the country and I’m delighted that our engineers have been able to bring ultrafast broadband connectivity to the area.

“The amount people are doing online and at the same time, from streaming high definition movies, gaming, online shopping and uploading large files to using mobile devices over wireless broadband, is growing every year and this pace shows no sign of slowing.

“Bringing ultrafast broadband to the Marshwood Vale will allow residents and businesses to do more online and is a reflection of our commitment to upgrading the network across every part of the country.”

Around 4% of UK homes currently have access to full fibre broadband, but plans to expand across the country are gathering speed. The UK Government has set its ambition of making full fibre available to every home by 2033, while Openreach’s ‘Fibre First’ programme will make this technology available to 3,000,000 homes and businesses across the UK by the end of 2020.

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Categories: Dorset