Cornwall Fire and Rescue Service and the Prince’s Trust are asking local businesses to get involved with a TEAM programme currently underway in St Austell.
A group of eleven young people aged between 16 and 25 years old who are not in employment, education or training (NEETS) are taking part in a 12 week Prince’s Trust TEAM programme personal development course which aims to help young people develop the skills and confidence to move into employment, education, training, volunteering or apprenticeships. The courses are run in partnership with and funded by Cornwall Council’s Adult Education service.
An important part of the course is two weeks work experience and that is where local businesses come in.
Group leader Samantha Spooner said: “The participants will take on and learn a lot in just 12 weeks. We want local businesses to offer them the opportunity to learn new skills and help raise their levels of confidence and motivation to ensure they enter further education, training or employment.”
The group will also take part in team building activities and challenges, a week-long action packed residential trip as well as receive advice on how to write a CV and gain nationally recognised qualifications.
The TEAM will also undertake a community project and this is another area where local businesses can get involved.
Sam says: “We have worked with local businesses in the past who have kindly donated materials so we hope we can rely on them for their help and support.”
Station Manager Dave Pilling from Cornwall Fire and Rescue Service said: “We are delighted to be able to work with The Prince’s Trust to deliver this very worthwhile programme. Too many young people feel they don’t have any skills and talents, and feel they’ll never amount to anything. The Team programme really does help them to turn their lives around; helping them into work, education or training, furthermore taking part in Team does not affect their benefits”.
Cornwall Council cabinet member for communities Geoff Brown said: “Cornwall Fire and Rescue Service has been extremely successful in helping young people from many areas and backgrounds. This initiative in partnership with The Prince’s Trust is to be applauded. It’s great to see how our fire service can help these young people learn how to become better communicators and leaders as they grow in confidence and, in some cases, turn their lives around.”
If any local businesses are interested in work experience placements or being involved in the community project then please contact Samantha Spooner on 07779334386.
Photograph shows the St Austell Team
Posted on 13 February
Cornwall Council and Royal Cornwall Museum are working together to bring great art to Cornish schools
Students in schools across Cornwall are being offered a unique opportunity to learn from and enjoy original artworks in their own classrooms.
The paintings and prints are part of Cornwall Council’s Schools Art Collection and are on loan from the Royal Cornwall Museum. Each artwork comes with a learning resource pack to inspire and engage pupils at key stages 1 and 2. Many of the works are by prestigious artists associated with Cornwall and the St Ives School and include pieces by Kate Nicholson, Alfred Wallis and Wilhelmina Barns-Graham.
The Schools Art Collection is an exceptional resource that was put together with the aim of offering school children the opportunity to engage with artwork by influential artists, with many of the works donated or purchased for minimal amounts in the 1960s and 70s. Further information about the history of the collection can be found on our art collections at Cornwall Council page.
Alongside the loans programme a selection of other works from the collection can be viewed in the ‘From Great Beginnings to the 21st Century’ exhibition at The Royal Cornwall Museum in Truro. Plus there are also online learning resources for five selected works available via The Royal Cornwall Museum website.
Cornwall Council cabinet member for economy and culture Julian German said “It is delightful to see these wonderful artworks being shared with school pupils across Cornwall. I hope that they will inspire both further creativity and debate. This reflects the vision that Barbara Hepworth had when the collection was established over 50 years ago.”
The photograph above is of a painting called ‘Untitled’ by Michael Finn which currently hangs in the ‘From Great Beginnings to the 21st Century’ exhibition of Schools Art pieces in the Link Gallery at the Royal Cornwall Museum.
Posted on 13 February 2015
With a couple of weeks still to go until the end of a key amnesty which gives people who are illegally subletting or not living in their council homes the opportunity to hand back their keys, dozens of calls have been made to a dedicated fraud hotline and two properties recovered.
69 calls have been received and two properties have been surrendered by tenants following the introduction of a two month key amnesty which runs until 28 February 2015. The amnesty allows anyone not living in their council home or illegally subletting it to hand back their keys rather than face possible criminal investigation and potential legal action which could ultimately result in a criminal conviction.
Every property being used fraudulently stops another household in housing need from accessing that affordable housing. A new home costs on average well over £150,000 to build and there are almost 28,000 households registered on Cornwall Homechoice seeking an affordable home, making it even more important that those committing tenancy fraud do not get away with depriving other households out of the homes they need.
Illegal subletting happens when a council home is let to a tenant and that tenant then moves out and illegally lets the property to someone else – usually at a higher rent.
Not only is this illegal, it prevents much needed homes from being made available to families in genuine need and in addition costs every household in Cornwall money.
Cornwall Council’s Corporate Fraud Team and Cornwall Housing Ltd have been working in partnership since August 2014 to tackle tenancy fraud and, in what is believed to be the first such prosecution in Cornwall under new Prevention of Social Housing Fraud Act legislation, a former tenant was convicted of tenancy fraud in December for illegally moving out of and then subletting a council house. The former tenant was given a 12 month conditional discharge and was ordered to pay Cornwall Council’s full investigation and legal after admitting moving out of the property and subletting it.
Jane Barlow, Managing Director of Cornwall Housing said: “This prosecution shows that this type of activity will not be tolerated by Cornwall Housing Ltd. We have been working in partnership with Cornwall Council’s experienced Corporate Fraud Team and two homes have already been surrendered.
We have seen evidence of how introducing a key amnesty has worked well in other parts of the country. By bringing the issue to the public’s attention, other authorities saw an increase in referrals to its tenancy fraud hotline and we are seeing the same results here. We know that the overwhelming majority of residents live in their homes legally and that they share our commitment to tackling tenancy fraud and I would encourage anyone who suspects someone of committing tenancy fraud to get in touch.”
Joyce Duffin, Cornwall Council Cabinet Member for Housing and Environment said: “It costs on average £18,000 a year to house a family in temporary accommodation. There is huge pressure on the supply of social housing making it imperative that the housing we do have available goes to people in genuine need of help. It’s totally wrong for people not to be living in housing intended for them and to be potentially illegally profiting from it at the same time.”
The initiative has been launched in the wake of a change in the law.
The introduction of the Prevention of Social Housing Fraud Act 2013 in October 2013 means people illegally subletting their property can now face a prison sentence of up to two years, a criminal record, or a fine of up to £5,000.
Joyce adds: “I would urge anyone either not living in or illegally sub-letting their council home to get in touch right away.
Once the amnesty ends anyone found not to be living in their home or illegally subletting will face the full force of the new powers.”
Anyone who is illegally subletting or is not living in their council home should hand back their keys to the Council’s Corporate Fraud Team, local housing officer or housing office.
Residents wishing to report somebody who may be illegally subletting or is not living in their home can do so in complete confidence by calling the Council’s dedicated fraud hotline on 0800 7316125 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Further information can be found at www.cornwall.gov.uk/keyamnesty.
Story posted 13 February 2015
Works to improve the Union Corner road junction adjacent to Falmouth School are set to start on Monday, 16 February.
The £2.3m project, which is due to be completed in July 2015, will see significant improvements carried out to increase the capacity at the junction and improve safety.
The Union Corner junction links the four key roads in Falmouth (Union Road, Trescobeas Road, Bickland Hill, and Kergilliack Road) with two adjacent mini roundabouts. This arrangement will be replaced by a single new roundabout, together with a new link road to Trecobeas Road. The initial stages of the project will include site clearance and temporary works to facilitate the project, followed by the creation of new carriageway routes, islands and pedestrian routes.
Funding for the works, which will be carried out by CORMAC Contracting and managed by Ward Williams Associates, is coming from a range of partners, including £1,559m from the Government’s Local Pinch Point Fund, with the balance from Cornwall’s Local Transport Plan.
Welcoming the improvements, Bert Biscoe, the Council’s Cabinet Member for Transport said “This upgrade is a much needed improvement for Falmouth which will enhance the pedestrian experience as well as improving traffic flow. With the need to keep things moving as much as possible it's a complex scheme.”
“CORMAC is an experienced contractor and will work well with the surrounding community to ensure safety, ease of access and as clean an environment as possible during the works. The funding is also a complex mix and we owe all those who have helped to stitch the package together a warm round of applause for their commitment and creativity.
Also supporting the scheme, David Saunby, the local ward member said “Having attended several meetings on this issue, I am happy to support this project, now that alterations have been made to the original plans regarding traffic flows, which I sincerely hope will ease the very long tailbacks at peak periods along Bickland Water Road towards Union Corner”..
The works include:
- Replacing the existing double mini roundabout with a single roundabout and new link road
- Closure of the existing Trescobeas Road and Union Hill junction
- Upgrading existing footways and providing new to create improved shared use footways for pedestrian and cyclists
- Alterations to existing drainage to accommodate the new scheme
- Amendments to existing signing and lining and providing new
- Amendments to street lighting and the provision of new, energy efficient lighting
As these junctions are among the busiest in Falmouth, CORMAC will be working with partners to keep disruption to a minimum and ensure that local residents, businesses and schools are kept fully informed during the construction period. Traffic management plans are being developed to minimise potential nuisance from deliveries, traffic and parking during the construction period.
“We recognise that the scale of these works will inevitably cause some disruption at peak periods and we will working hard to minimise the impact on local people and businesses “ said Cormac site manager Ian Newby. “We would like to thank everyone for their patience during this time”.
Brett Miners, Headmaster of Falmouth School and Sarah Newton MP are supportive of the new scheme, which is a key step towards the wider improvement of Falmouth School aiming at providing high quality sports facilities for pupils and the local community.
“I am delighted that the school has been able to work in partnership with Cornwall Council regarding the acquisition of the land required to facilitate the road development” said Brett Miners. “Although the road initially will encroach on school fields, this will only occur during the construction phase as the new road is integral to the wider sports community project and development on the Budock Hospital site, which will enhance the school facilities in longer term.”
Truro and Falmouth MP Sarah Newton said “ I pay tribute to Brett Miners and the governors of Falmouth School for their vision and determination to unlock the land at Union Corner to develop new community sports facilities. Also to the support of the local community, Cornwall Council and the NHS to enable the project to go ahead. The road scheme is a key part of enabling the new community sports facilities.”
Posted on 13 February 2015
Two weeks of intensive campaigning for 18 young people in Cornwall came to an end on Saturday 07 February when the results of the elections for the national Youth Parliament were declared at a special ceremony at County Hall.
More than 5,597 young people from 27 schools, 2 colleges and a number of youth projects across Cornwall took part in this year’s election to choose three new Members of Youth Parliament and three Deputy Members of Youth Parliament to represent their views and champion youth issues locally, regionally and nationally.
Following a welcome to the candidates and their family, friends and supporters from Andrew Wallis, Cornwall Council’s Cabinet Member for Young People, the results of the voting were formally announced by Geoff Waxman, from the Council’s elections service.
The six young people elected were:
- North and East Cornwall – Member of the Youth Parliament - Owen Winter from Wadebridge who attends Wadebridge School; Deputy Member of the Youth Parliament – Tabitha Wethers from Torpoint who attends St Austell College.
Also standing for election was Josh Yates.
- Mid Cornwall –Member of the Youth Parliament - Cameron Sykes from Perranporth who attends Richard Lander School; Deputy Member of the Youth Parliament - Saffron Carol Blake from St Day who attends Richard Lander School.
Also standing for election were Steven James Wills, Emma Donovan, Joshua Boughton and Keziah Bunyan.
- West Cornwall – Member of the Youth Parliament - Owen Davies from Penzance who attends Cape Cornwall School; Deputy Member of the Youth Parliament – Joseph Michael Thomas Lander from Helston who attends Helston Community College
Also standing for election were Charlie Oliver, Ki Loveday Edwards, Sunny George Donaldson, Amber Seddon, Olivia Ireland, Mollie Martin and Abigail Lilly
This year all the voting took place online for the first time in the history of the Youth Parliament elections in Cornwall, with a special voting site set up where young people could see information on the candidates and the issues they want to work on. Moving to an online approach meant that candidates were also able to make a video about the issues they represented and put it on the site and social media was used using the hashtag #HaveYourVoice to campaign and encourage schools and young people to engage with the voting process and raise awareness of young people having a voice.
The number of votes cast were monitored daily and published on the Young People’s Reference Group Cornwall Facebook page and across the council’s Facebook and Twitter accounts. To help encourage schools and colleges to get involved in the elections process this year there has also been a Democracy Award Scheme with schools and colleges taking part receiving a Bronze, Silver or Gold Award based on their level of participation.
Cape Cornwall recorded the highest level of pupils taking part in the election, with 74% of pupils casting their vote. Other schools with a high voter turnout included Brannel School, where 61% of pupils voted; Liskeard School where 63% of pupils voted; Richard Lander School where 52% of pupils voted and Wadebridge where 58% of pupils took part. All five schools received Bronze Democracy Awards for their efforts.
Andrew Wallis, the Council’s Lead Member for Young People was delighted with the level of turnout from young people in Cornwall. “There are almost 120,000 children and young people up to the age of 18 in Cornwall and these elections have been a real opportunity for them to help shape their own future . “ he said. “It is vital that decision makers locally and nationally listen to and act on the concerns and issues facing young people and taking part in these elections has been a good start in making this happen”.
“I would like to thank the staff and young people at all the schools and colleges who have been involved and look forward to working with the MYPs and the Deputy MYPs in the coming months to ensure that the voice of young people in Cornwall is heard”.
Posted - 10 February 2015
Cornwall Council has welcomed the news that the three schools in Cornwall will benefit from funding from the Government’s Priority Schools Building Programme.
Minister of State David Laws announced in May 2014 that the Government was allocating £2 billion for the second phase of the PSBP programme to fund major rebuilding and refurbishment projects to address the needs of schools in the very worst condition. Under the programme, which runs from 2015 to 2021, local authorities, dioceses, sixth form colleges, academies, and multi academy trusts were invited to submit expressions of interest for an entire school site or for one or multiple individual buildings. 261 schools England benefited from the first phase of the programme.
Following a detailed assessment of the condition of schools across Cornwall, the Council submitted bids for around £40m to rebuild or refurbish six schools – Helston, Humphry Davy, Hayle Community College, Budehaven Community School, Treviglas Community College and Biscovey Nursery and Infant school - in July and this week heard that funding had been allocated for Helston and Humphry Davy schools. Newquay Tretherras School put forward their own independent bid for funding which has also been successful .
Details of the funding was announced by Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg who visited both Helston and Newquay Tretherras Schools where he met with staff, students and Governors.
“It is crucial that we invest properly in education so that every child has a fair start in life” said Nick Clegg. “Thousands of pupils will benefit from better, brighter, warmer classrooms – thanks to this funding” .
Andrew Wallis, who was at Helston School to hear the news from the Deputy Prime Minister in person, welcomed the funding which, he said, would make a huge difference to the schools which had been successful. Adding that he recognised that the remaining four schools would be disappointed that their bids had not received funding from this round of the Priority Schools Building Programme, he said the Council would now be working with staff and Governors to look at alternative options for carrying out the works.
“This is obviously very good news for the schools which have been allocated funding “ he said. “I am particularly pleased that the bid for Helston has been successful as everyone connected with the school has worked extremely hard to secure this much needed funding. I would especially like to pay tribute to Sharon Hindley and her team and the capital projects team as it was their hard work which has resulted in securing funding for these three Cornish schools.
“I know that the staff, governors, pupils and parents at the remaining schools will be disappointed but would reassure them that they put forward a very strong case and we will continue to look at ways of carrying out these works. “
Ensuring that all of our communities are protected is really important and so the Council will be supporting Safer Internet Day on 10 February. The aim of the day is to promote safer and more responsible use of online technology and mobile phones, especially among children and young people across the world.
Cabinet Member for Children and Young People Andrew Wallis says
“We want to make sure that we are doing all we can to help to protect individuals, families and communities to stay safe online.
E-safety is important to everything we do online whether it’s for work or pleasure. The virtual world provides huge opportunities for everyone to work, learn and be creative but we need to remember that it creates challenges for us as individuals, our family and friends and our communities. We all need to understand these challenges and know how we can stay safe online which is why we are showing our support for Safer Internet Day.”
We all like to think that we know how to protect ourselves online but how easy are we making it for ourselves to become a target of fraud, identity theft, bullying or worse? To see how safe you are online ask yourselves these questions:
- Do you use the same password for all of your online accounts such as banking, shopping, and social media?
- How unique are your passwords are they simply your date of birth, mother’s maiden name or the name of your nearest and dearest?
- How much information about yourself do you share online?
- Who has control over what photos, images or stories about you are being added to social media?
- Who has access to this information? You, your friends or everyone?
This is what e-safety is all about, recognising the risks and knowing what we can do about it. We’ll be sharing e-safety hints and tips throughout the day and we’ll share useful links to websites including Cyber Streetwise where you can find all of the information you need to stay safer online. Cyber Streetwise is part of the governments national cyber security programme aiming to change the way people view online safety. The interactive website provides advice such as installing antivirus software, strong passwords, online shopping and social privacy settings to help people enjoy a safer experience online.
We’ll also be letting you know more about how we use your information and why we hold, use and share information we collect to ensure we are delivering services to you in the most effective way.
To find out more about Safer Internet Day, Cyber Streetwise and all of our other hints and tips follow us on Twitter and Facebook #ccsafeinternet.
Story posted 10 February 2015
Companies wanting to become a healthier workplace will be attending the fifth annual Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Healthy Workplace Awards on Monday 9 February, at the Royal Cornwall Showground in Wadebridge.
Hosted by Cornwall Council’s Health Promotion Service, the event will showcase how local businesses have created a healthy culture at work and delegates will take part in workshops designed to help them make changes around important topics like tackling dementia and increasing physical activity.
Stuart Bourne, Acting Director of Public Health, says “Local businesses are being offered the opportunity to find out how a healthier workforce is a great asset to their business, and can save them money. This is the fifth year of the Awards and we are delighted to have reached the milestone where over 100 employers have now received a bronze, silver or gold award.”
At the 2015 award ceremony a total of 36 awards will be presented in various categories:
- 4 Bronze award winners
- 5 Silver award winners
- 20 Gold award winners
- 3 Mentor award winners (where successful healthy workplaces support firms who are just starting out)
- Workplace health champion (recognising an outstanding individual contribution)
- Best newcomer
- Primary school of the year
- Secondary school of the year
The awards will be presented by Dame Carol Black, National Advisor on Work and Health to the Department of Health and the event will be opened by Cllr Jeremy Rowe, Deputy Leader of Cornwall Council and Chair of the Cornwall Health and Wellbeing Board.
Evidence shows health is good for work and work is good for health. For instance, those who smoke six cigarettes a day or more have a 34% higher incidence of being absent than non-smokers, and a 10% higher incidence of being absent for longer. So encouraging staff to give up smoking benefits the staff themselves, and the company.
It is estimated that the annual economic costs of sickness absence and worklessness is over £100 billion. This year’s award winners identify significant benefits from the programme including sickness absence being cut in half in one organisations since working for the award and two-thirds of staff being trained in Heartstart (emergency life saving skills) at another employer. A range of opportunities are offered to staff through the programme including stress management support, physical activity challenges and help to stop smoking or improve diet.
Cllr Jeremy Rowe said: “I am delighted to be attending the awards ceremony to hear many inspiring stories of change from the award winners. It is vital that we create opportunities to build better health and wellbeing into our daily lives and the workplace is an ideal way to do that. Moving to better daily habits like walking more or eating a healthier lunch is much easier to achieve with the right facilities and support from work colleagues.”
You can find out more about the healthy workplace scheme online at: www.behealthyatwork.org, where you can download a brochure, look at previous winners, and express an interest in joining the scheme. You can follow the awards ceremony on Twitter: #HWAwards15
Story posted 6 February 2015
A brand new facility to help Cornwall Council tenants and residents on the Berryfields estate in Bodmin prepare for the introduction of the Government’s Universal Credit benefit payment system has opened.
The official opening of the Berryfields community Work Club/IT facility took place on Monday 02 February 2015 and is the next stage in Berryfields UC-Ucan pilot which started in mid-November 2014.
The UC-Ucan pilot is all about working with tenants and residents to get ready for Universal Credit and gives advice on setting up a bank account, using computers and the internet; and personal budgeting skills.
Universal Credit, one of the biggest changes to welfare benefits since 1942, is expected to start being introduced in Cornwall later this year.
Managing Director of Cornwall Housing Jane Barlow says: “I am delighted that this year long pilot has been launched which sees a unique partnership between Cornwall Housing Ltd (CHL), the tenants and residents of Berryfields estate in Bodmin and a number of key partner organisations.
Berryfields tenants and residents will help us learn what support may be needed now and in the future across all the properties we manage. This is a tremendous opportunity to work with Berryfields residents but to also benefit other communities in the future.”
The Work Club was supported through investment from the Job Centre Plus Flexible Support Fund. Cheryl Ward, Senior Partnership Manager for DWP in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly said: “We are pleased to be working with our partners in Bodmin to develop local facilities that will help more people into work and give greater access to online services and support”
One of the partner organisations involved in the pilot is Events 4 All which is providing a work club and access to IT facilities on Monday afternoons for tenants and residents of Berryfields.
Brian Farmer from Events 4 All will be supporting residents as they improve their IT skills, identify potential barriers to the employment market and carry out job searches.
Brian says, “There is a range of IT available along with printing facilities, which will also be available for weekday afternoons for residents to continue to hone their skills. The new facility provides a brilliant opportunity for anyone living on Berryfields to access IT equipment and specialist support”.
Cornwall Council cabinet member for housing and environment Joyce Duffin said: “This is a fantastic project. I was really impressed with the staff who will build relationships with people and give face to face support to those who might need help in more than one area of their lives, as well as make sure they get the benefits they are entitled to. This pilot will help us assess the support which needs to be put in place as Universal Credit is rolled out.”
Other partner organisations who are also involved are ECCABI, Kernow Credit Union, Pentreath, Money Advice Service and Cornwall Works Hub.
Story posted 6 February 2015
In response to recent comments in the media on the level and use of the Council’s reserves, please see below a statement from the Leader of the Council, John Pollard.
The vast majority of our reserves is money we cannot use because we hold it on behalf of others or it is there for a specific purpose.This means that the Council's general reserves are estimated to be £42.713m at the end of this financial year which equates to 3.7% of the Council’s gross budget. We hold reserves primarily for emergencies and they are only able to be used once.
John Pollard said: “The Prime Minister obviously has a different view of the use of reserves than we do! I am keen to state the facts:
We are curious as to where the PM’s gained his figures because our financial accounts are audited by independent external auditors and as such our reserve balances have been validated and checked by them each year. The movement since 2011 has been an increase of around £18m. The majority of this increase is set aside for specific projects and capital investment. Once again the list is:
- £17m held on behalf of others e.g. reserves held for schools, Tamar Bridge, Port of Penryn, Port of Truro
- £64m held to meet long term commitments e.g. repayment costs for assets like school buildings, PFI projects.
- £37m held to deliver specific projects funded by government,
- £9m held for the one off costs of cutting the budget by £196m
- £5m held for insurance purposes.(In some cases we self-insure.)
Reserves are our safety net for unexpected items and emergencies like bad weather, while the cuts in government funding are ongoing and happen each year. Reserves are only usable once. This should be contrasted with the £196m reduction in Government funding which sees the level of money given every year to the Council to spend on services, reduced by £196m.
So, this means that even if we were to spend all of our reserves next year to prevent services being reduced then the following year we would still have to reduce the services but we would also have no money to cover emergencies such as reacting to bad weather events. We have to reduce our running costs in line with our income in order to have a sustainable basis to run our services in the future. To put simply, it’s a bit like your mortgage at home, if you use all your savings to pay the bank one month, next month you are still in the same situation but have no savings to pay for the boiler if its breaks down. So you are in an even worse situation.
Cornwall Council has a proud record of careful and prudent budget management. Our finances have remained strong and secure at a time of great turmoil. We are fortunate to be able to use this position to cushion some of the impact on services and to plan for the future. The P.M may regard this as having lots of money available, I see it as good housekeeping and budget management.”
Story posted 3 February 2015
With just under three months to go to the general election and the country’s MP’s getting ready to fight for their seats, 18 young people in Cornwall will find out who has been elected to the national Youth Parliament on Saturday, 7 February when the results are formally declared at a special ceremony at County Hall in Truro.
Over the past two weeks young people from schools, colleges and youth projects across Cornwall have been voting to elect three new Members of the Youth Parliament and three Deputy Members of the Youth Parliament to represent their views and champion youth issues locally, regionally and nationally. So far more than 3,700 young people have cast their votes, with more expected to take part in the election before the close of polls at 11 pm on Friday 6 February.
This year all the voting has taken place online for the first time in the history of the Youth Parliament elections in Cornwall, with a special voting site where young people can see information on the candidates and the issues they want to work on. There are also videos from the candidates.
Young people can vote using a unique voting code. The number of votes cast are being monitored daily and published on the website. To help encourage schools and colleges to get involved in the elections process this year there has also been a Democracy Award Scheme with schools and colleges taking part receiving a Bronze, Silver or Gold Award based on their level of participation.
So far Cape Cornwall has recorded the highest level of pupils taking part in the election, with 54% of pupils casting their vote. Other schools with a high voter turn out include Launceston College, where 505 (40%) of pupils have voted so far; Richard Lander School where 308 pupils (24%) have voted; Liskeard where 371 (39%) of pupils have voted; Helston where 521 (35%) of pupils have voted and Brannel School where 334 (46%) of pupils have taken part so far.
“I would like to congratulate the young people who have encouraged their school to support the elections process,” said Colin Blandford. “This campaign has already been a success in raising the voice of young people to make a difference in some schools. I would particularly like to congratulate Cape Cornwall school for being the first to reach a democracy award with over 50% of their students having voted. There is still time for young people to cast their vote before the polls close on Friday evening.“
“Voting is not just about choosing an MYP , however. It is a voice added to all the other young people’s voices across Cornwall in saying young people care about the issues which affect them and please listen to us - the more votes which are cast means the more decision makers will have to be listen to young people.”
Andrew Wallis, the Council’s Lead Member for Children and Young People, is delighted with the level of turnout from young people in Cornwall. “There are almost 120,000 children and young people up to the age of 18 in Cornwall and these elections have been a real opportunity for them to help shape their own future “ he said. “It is vital that decision makers locally and nationally listen to and act on the concerns and issues facing young people and taking part in these elections has been a good start in making this happen”.
“I would like to thank the staff and young people at all the schools and colleges which have taken part in these elections and look forward to hearing the results on Saturday”.
The declaration of results will begin at 1.30pm on Saturday, 7 February when Andrew Wallis will welcome the candidates and their family and friends to the ceremony. The results will then be formally announced by a representative from the Council’s elections service, with each of the candidates invited to give a short speech after the results for their area have been confirmed.
The formal declaration will be followed by the presentation of the Democracy Awards to representatives of the schools which have taken part in the election process.
The 18 young people standing for election in the three areas are:
- North and East Cornwall
Owen Winter, Josh Yates and Tabitha Wethers
- Mid Cornwall
Cameron Sykes, Saffron Carol Blake, Steven James Wills, Emma Donovan, Keziah Bunyan, Joshua Boughton
- West Cornwall
Owen Davies, Ki Loveday Edwards, Sunny George Donaldson, Joseph Michael Thomas Lander, Amber Seddon, Olivia Ireland, Mollie Martin, Abigail Lilly, Charlie Oliver
Story posted 5 February 2015
Having a go at laying tables from left to right Harriet Ingleheart, Emily Francis and Megan Drake from Pool Academy with waitress Audrina Esenakunova
Young people from Cornish Schools found out about careers in hospitality at a luxury 4 star hotel on 3 February when The Budock Vean Hotel hosted a Have a Go at Hospitality Day.
Students from Pool Academy, Penryn College, and Helston Community College travelled to Budock Vean for the event where they took part in a variety of interactive sessions. In housekeeping they learned how to make beds and how to check rooms. In the dining room they learned how to lay tables and fold napkins whilst in the kitchen they had a go at decorating desserts. In addition they learned about customer service by taking part in reception roleplays.
The event was organised by Cornwall Learning Education Business Partnership and Tourism Skills Cornwall.
“The Budock Vean Hotel Have a Go at Hospitality day was a fantastic opportunity for the students to experience the hospitality industry first hand. The management at the Budock Vean Hotel are to be congratulated for the effort and detail in putting this programme together and making the students so welcome” said Kate Whetter, Education Projects Manager at Cornwall Learning Education Business Partnership.
“We are delighted to welcome young people from local schools to the Budock Vean. It is a good opportunity for them to find out more about the hospitality industry. This is an important industry for Cornwall and it provides an excellent career opportunity for young people. We hope the day has inspired some to pursue a career in our industry” said Martin Barlow, Manager Director of The Budock Vean Hotel.
Our students were inspired by the day at Budock Vean, most of them had not visited a Four Star Country Hotel and Spa before. They enjoyed getting involved with the activities and were pleased with the prizes they won” said Carrie Holmes Head of Careers at Pool Academy. She continued - “We would like to thank the staff at the Hotel for hosting such a fantastic Day and Cornwall Learning Education Business Partnership for organising the event. We hope that some pupils will now consider careers in catering and hospitality and management as it is such a key industry to Cornwall, we will be offering follow up careers guidance meetings so that they can discuss this further.”
Story posted 5 February 2015
Daisy Glenville and Beth Gillespie learn how to fillet fish with Aarran Lightholder Demi Chef De Partie at The Seafood Restaurant
Young people from Cornish Schools found out about careers in hospitality at Rick Stein’s world-famous restaurant in Padstow on 28 January when The Seafood Restaurant hosted a Have a Go at Hospitality Day.
Students from Newquay Tretherras School, Treviglas Community College, Wadebridge School and Sir James Smith’s Community School travelled to Padstow for the event where they had a go at housekeeping, filleting and cooking fish, making mocktails and customer service.
The event was organised by Cornwall Learning Education Business Partnership and Tourism Skills Cornwall.
“We were keen for young people to get a good understanding of the vast range of careers in the industry and to try out some new skills” said Kate Whetter, Education Projects Manager at Cornwall Learning Education Business Partnership.
“We understand how important it is for young people to make informed decisions about their career choices and enjoyed welcoming another large group of local students to Padstow. There are a number of wonderful opportunities available within our growing industry in Cornwall and I hope that today’s event helps raise awareness of hospitality careers.” Said Michael Rabone, Head of Human Resources at The Seafood Restaurant.
“The Seafood Restaurant ‘Have a go’ sessions are a fantastic opportunity for students to experience the hospitality industry first hand. They learnt so much and worked with positive and inspirational professionals. The students have taken away so many new skills and a wealth of experience” said Hannah Wyglendacz teacher at Treviglas Community College.
“It has been a great experience to sample a lot of different aspects to hospitality and tourism. I feel really privileged to have had this opportunity today, and feel really excited and enthusiastic about attending The Seafood Restaurant for work experience in June” said Ben Massey Yr10 Wadebridge student.
Ellie Carmichael and Tad Maclean from Newquay Tretherras School with Lukas Andr Seafood Restaurant Bar Supervisor, and their “mocktails”
Story posted 5 February 2015
Last week 100 students at Sir James Smith’s Community School in Camelford took part in a Careers Speed networking event at the school organised by Cornwall Learning Education Business Partnership.
The year nine pupils will all be taking their options for their GCSE courses in the next few months and the event gave them the opportunity to speak to a range of local business people to find out about some of the many career options that are open to them.
The students spent the day in small groups speaking to employers including PFA Research, Total Energy Solutions, The Seafood Restaurant, Devon and Cornwall Police, Royal Cornwall Hospital Trust and Natwest Bank.
“The careers speed networking event has been a huge success for the students taking part” said Kate Whetter Education Projects Manager at Cornwall Learning Education Business Partnership “It has been a great opportunity to foster young people’s interest in the workplace and to inform them of the range of careers available to them.”
“The whole event provided a wonderful insight, for our students, into a range of industries, and the need for excellence and constant self-improvement. There can be nothing more beneficial to young people than being given the opportunity to talk to employees, and employers, face-to-face and gain guidance from them regarding the skills required in the workplace.” said Gill Bolton Careers and Work Experience Co-ordinator at the school.
Alastair Carnegie, managing director of Cornish energy broker Total Energy Solutions, said mentoring young people is essential to help prepare them for the world of work.
He said: “It is really important for local businesses to play their part in mentoring youngsters. By businesses getting involved in talking to and mentoring young people of school age, we can begin to prepare them for the job market, develop their skills and help them believe in a positive future. It helps to broaden their horizons about the opportunities that are out there for them, particularly in the South West.”
Story posted 5 February 2015
Please see below a press release issued on behalf of the Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Local Nature Partnership
The Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Local Nature Partnership (LNP) has strengthened its Board with the appointment of four new members with expertise in land management, water management and environmental service delivery.
The voluntary appointments, which were made following a recruitment process and take effect immediately, will see Nick Lawrence, South West Assistant Regional Director, National Trust; Simon Leather, Senior Agent, Tregothnan Estate in Cornwall; Dr Laurence Couldrick, Development & Policy Director for the Westcountry Rivers Trust and Joyce Duffin, Cornwall Council’s Portfolio Holder for Housing and Environment, join the LNP Board, bringing the total membership to 13.
Announcing the appointments Co-Chair Matthew Thomson said “ It was always the plan for the LNP to recruit new Board members once it was established where further expertise were needed, and the appointments we have made will strengthen our knowledge across the Board.
Co-Chair Professor Kevin Gaston added: “I am delighted that we have attracted such a diverse range of expertise especially with relation to land use and management. All four are wholly committed to serving the interests of Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly as we face the challenges and opportunities ahead.”
Having been with the National Trust for nearly 30 years operating in Cornwall and the South West, Nick Laurence is looking to embed a sustainable future in the work he does with the Trust as well as Cornwall as a whole. With a personal passion and commitment to maintaining Cornwall’s special character, landscape and environment, Nick has a track record of making things happen, having set up a large number of major projects across Cornwall working with key statutory agencies.
‘I am pleased to be offered this role” he said. “The progress Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly plans to make will be impossible without broad stakeholder involvement and I am looking forward to bringing my expertise to an already passionate group’.
With extensive experience in estate management Simon Leather has expert knowledge in farming, environmental and biodiversity objectives as well as property and commercial business activities. Simon will bring to the Board skills in strategic planning, environmental strategies and as well as valuing robust decision-making, a strong stakeholder focus, local awareness, and a desire to achieve the best possible results in all situations.
‘I am really glad to be offered this role” said Simon. “I look forward to bringing my experience in evolving the local environment in conjunction with the agricultural businesses and rural economy as well as working with partners to achieve the aims of the LNP’.
Laurence Couldrick has managed the catchment-based projects at the Westcountry Rivers Trust for the past 5 years, including the development of the Trust’s Payments for Ecosystem Services projects. His specialisms include modelling ecosystem services and environmental surveying and he has extensive experience monitoring freshwater habitats, lecturing on riparian and water resource management as well as carrying out catchment research with several research institutes.
‘I am delighted to be given this opportunity to join the Board of the LNP” said Dr Couldrick. “We have a lot of people in a relatively small space so need to get smarter about how we use land and our catchments - we can no longer work in silos thinking it’s someone else’s problems’.
Joyce Duffin’s appointment follows the recent changes to the Council’s Cabinet which resulted in the work of the LNP being covered by two portfolios. As a result she joins Edwina Hannaford,the Cabinet Member for Planning, as the Council’s representatives on the Board. ‘I’m delighted to have been offered this position” said Joyce. “Cornwall Council has a great deal of responsibility for the environment of Cornwall and I look forward to helping to shape its future’.
Story posted 5 February 2015
Helen Grant, the Minister for Tourism, is visiting Cornwall on Thursday, 5 February to meet key representatives of the tourism industry and discuss the future of the industry.
The one day visit will begin at Tate St Ives where the Minister will meet John Pollard, the Leader of Cornwall Council; Lord St Levan, Chair of the Visit Cornwall Partnership and Malcolm Bell, Head of Visit Cornwall. She will then visit the Eden Project, Lakeview Country Club and Newquay Cornwall Airport.
Welcoming her visit Cornwall Council Leader John Pollard confirmed that the Council is in advanced negotiations with the private sector over the transition of Visit Cornwall to a private sector led delivery model.
“I am delighted to welcome the Minister to Cornwall to discuss the future of the industry” he said. “I am particularly pleased she is visiting Tate St Ives, which has played such an important role in attracting year round visitors to Cornwall over the past 20 years. Cornwall Council has made a significant investment in the current project to double the size of the gallery space at Tate St Ives and I am pleased the Minister will see the progress that is being made on site.”
The Minister will also visit Newquay Cornwall Airport which is owned by Cornwall Council and John Pollard went on to say “Everyone knows that we’ve had to make some difficult decisions in setting our budget over the next few years but I hope that people will recognise that by maintaining funding in areas such as the airport, lifeguarding and improving our road and rail links we are supporting the tourism sector in a number of ways.”
“Since the Council set its budget in November it has been working with the private sector with the aim of ensuring that the activities of Visit Cornwall continue after Cornwall Council funding stops in April and both parties are close to agreeing to a model of delivery which will see the private sector take a lead on marketing Cornwall as a tourism destination in the future.
“The private sector have been extremely positive and proactive in coming forward with a new model of delivery and I would like to thank members of the Visit Cornwall Partnership for working so hard, over a short period of time, to work with the Council to develop a new model of delivery which is not dependent on the public sector in the long term. We have reached an agreement in principle and I am confident we will conclude negotiations in the near future.”
Lord St Levan, Chair of the Visit Cornwall Partnership added “The time is right for the tourism industry in Cornwall to have control of its own destiny and in particular to take on the responsibility to develop further the hugely successful Visit Cornwall website. It is greatly to the credit of Cornwall Council and Cornwall Development Company that on their watch Cornwall’s digital media strategy has become such a market leader and we in the private sector relish the challenge of building on this.”
Minister for Tourism Helen Grant said “It was great to visit Cornwall today with its fantastic scenery and wonderful attractions that make it a standout UK tourist destination. The new model for tourism in this area will be one that I will take a close interest in. It's crucial that it is sustainable and can help deliver growth and jobs and I wish the Visit Cornwall Partnership the best of luck for the future.
“The Government is supporting places like Cornwall via schemes such as the Coastal Communities Fund, the GREAT campaign and a new £2 million challenge fund that destinations from across the country can bid from. I want people from across the world to experience the best of Britain and come and experience Cornwall for themselves."
Story posted 5 February 15
Cornwall’s Acting Director of Public Health is advising the public to take care during the current period of cold weather.
The Met Office has issued a ‘Level 3’ cold weather for Cornwall. This is when average temperatures have dropped to 2°C or below, and / or widespread ice and heavy snow is present. This period of cold weather is expected to last at least until the weekend.
In response to the warning the Public Health team at Cornwall Council is issuing the following advice:Keep Homes Warm
Cold homes have a significant impact on people's health. One of the best ways of keeping yourself well during winter is to stay warm.
- If you have reduced mobility, are 65 or over, or have a health condition such as heart or lung disease, you should heat your home to at least 18C and make sure you wear enough clothes to stay warm. It's a good idea to keep your bedroom at this temperature all night.
- If you're under 65 and healthy, you can safely have your house cooler than 18C, if you're comfortable.
- You can also use a hot water bottle or electric blanket (but not both at the same time) to keep warm while you're in bed.
Flu is a highly infectious illness that can spread rapidly. You may be eligible for a free flu jab if you're at risk of complications from flu. To find out if you can get the flu jab for free go to the NHS Choices websiteEat well
Food is a vital source of energy, which helps keep your body warm. Try to make sure that you have hot meals and drinks regularly throughout the day and keep active in the home if you can.Wear warm clothes
Wrap up warm, inside and out. Layer your clothing to stay warm and wear shoes with a good grip if you need to go outside. If possible, stay inside during a cold period if you have heart or respiratory problems.Help your neighbours in winter
Check on older neighbours or relatives to make sure they're safe and well. Make sure they're warm enough, especially at night, and have stocks of food and medicines so they don't need to go out during very cold weather.
If you're worried about a relative or an elderly neighbour, you can ring the Age UK helpline on 0800 00 99 66.
Stuart Bourne, Acting Director of Public Health states:“Make sure that you stay warm. If going outside make sure you dress appropriately. If indoors, make sure that you keep your heating to the right temperature; heating your home to at least 18°C in winter poses minimal risk to your health when you are wearing suitable clothing. If there is anyone you know who might be at special risk, for example, an older person living on their own, make sure they know what to do to stay warm and are well stocked with food and medications. If you are worried about your health or that of somebody you know, ring NHS 111”.
Story posted 5 February 2015
Cornwall Council welcomes granting of Development Consent Order for A30 Temple to Higher Carblake scheme
Today’s announcement that the Development Consent Order for the A30 Temple to Higher Carblake improvement has been granted by the Secretary of State for Transport has been welcomed by Cornwall Council which says it marks the completion of another key milestone in the scheme.
The Government has confirmed that the Secretary of State for Transport Patrick Mcloughlin has now formally approved the Development Consent Order which means that construction on the £59m scheme could begin in the Spring.
The works, which are being led by Cornwall Council in partnership with the Department for Transport and the Highways Agency, are expected to take 19 months to complete, with two lanes open in each direction for summer 2016. Keir was appointed as the contractor for the scheme at an extraordinary meeting of the Council’s Cabinet in December.
Council Leader John Pollard has welcomed the granting of the Development Consent Order. “Local residents, businesses and holidaymakers have long highlighted the impact of traffic congestion and poor journey times along the 5 km section of the A30 between Temple and Higher Carblake” he said. “This decision by the Government is another major step in delivering this much needed scheme and I would like to thank everyone who has worked with the Council to achieve this”.
”The dualling of this 5 kilometre stretch of road will play a vital role in reducing delays on the A30 which currently costs over £10m a year in lost time alone. It will also play an important role in the future prosperity of Cornwall by encouraging economic growth, aiding regeneration and business expansion and supporting tourism.
Welcoming the news of the announcement Cornwall Councillor Bert Biscoe, the Cabinet Member for Transport and Waste, said “The progress of this scheme is yet more evidence of the strong, practical relationship between CORMAC ltd Design, with Cornwall Council's legal team, and the Highways Agency and Department of Transport.”
“This mirrors similar relationship in the sphere of rail development and highlights the importance for Cornwall of having a single Authority which can work with focused effectiveness with the Government and other Agencies. It also showcases the exceptional talent and experience which is retained within the Council's family of functions and organisations. It all shows that Cornwall is becoming increasingly capable of managing its public affairs to a much higher level and, in the process, achieving high quality outcomes.”
Local Cornwall Councillor Chris Batters said “ This is absolutely great news for both North Cornwall and the whole of the county. As a resident of Bodmin for over forty years, and an ex-Police Officer who worked on that part of the A30, this is something that has been a long time coming but has finally arrived. Congratulations to all those involved in the hard work pushing the case for the dualling, and I look forward to the work commencing in the coming months.”
Mick Martin, Chair of the Temple to Bodmin A30 Action Group, said “I am delighted that the Secretary of State has formally granted the Development Consent Order. The local community are looking forward to the start of work on this much needed scheme and this is an important step forward.”
Story posted 5 February 2015
Penmount Crematorium presented The Phoenix Acute Stroke Unit at Royal Cornwall Hospitals Trust (RCHT) with a cheque for £1775.00 last week.
The crematorium raises money for charity throughout the year, through a number of ways, including the remembrance service in June, the carol service in December, and the donation box in the Flower Room.
The crematorium chose the Treliske stroke unit as their 2014 charity, and on Wednesday 28 January, Jessica Silye, Fundraising Manager at RCHT went to Penmount to receive the cheque.
Jessica said "The support of the staff and community at Penmount Crematorium is remarkable. We are so very grateful for their donations and fundraising efforts over the year, and we look forward to using this gift to provide gold standard stroke services in the Phoenix Unit at Royal Cornwall Hospital. We can't thank you enough!"
Susan Cannan, Bereavement Services Manager at Penmount Crematorium, said: “The staff at Penmount Crematorium were very pleased to be able to support the The Phoenix Acute Stroke Unit based at The Royal Cornwall Hospital during 2014. The Unit had been instrumental in helping an ex Penmount staff member back to good health following a stroke and the staff appreciated the wonderful work they had done on behalf of our old colleague and the work they do on a daily basis with others.”
Posted 3 February 2015
A 100m section of Seaton sea wall, originally constructed to prevent beach sands drifting across the highway, was extensively damaged following a series of storms at the end of 2013 and into 2014. The damage reduced the level of the beach by approximately three meters and has left the B3247 without sufficient support or protection against further storms.
To address these concerns, CORMAC Solutions Ltd will start works on the 23 February 2015 to construct a new retaining wall. The wall will be made of 10m long driven sheet piles with a reinforced concrete capping beam which is anticipated to be completed in June 2015. A new parapet wall will also be built to minimise wave overtopping and provide pedestrian safety. Traffic lights will be required throughout the construction period for safety reasons.
Story posted 3 February
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