On 25 June 2015, Truro Magistrates Court heard how a Truro kebab shop which had its premises licence revoked following an earlier failed appeal, continued to sell hot food into the early hours, only days after losing the appeal.
Mehmet Gulenc. the proprietor of One Stop Kebab Shop, New Bridge Street, Truro, was originally prosecuted on 19 August 2014 for a breach of licence conditions and given a Conditional Discharge by the Court. His Premises Licence was subsequently reviewed and revoked by Cornwall Council at a Licensing Act Committee on 29 October 2014. This revocation was appealed by Mr Gulenc and the Council decision was upheld by the Magistrates’ Court on 24 February 2015.
Only three days after this decision, at 23:15 hours on Friday 27 February 2015, police observed Mr Gulenc behind the counter serving members of the public. He continued to serve until 01.39 hours after informing police he had not received the paperwork from the court and was entitled to carry on. The premises should have ceased trading at 23.00 hours.
Gulenc was fined £160 and ordered to pay a victim surcharge £20 and full costs to the Council of £1,105.88 making a total of £1285.88. The conditional discharge remains in place and he was informed that if he breached it again he could be brought back to the Court.
Gulenc’s solicitor stated that he struggled to understand the law as he was not native to this country but accepted that this was the third time he had committed such offences.
Bob Mears Cornwall Council Senior Licensing officer said, “I am disappointed that the Council were yet again placed in a position where they had to take such enforcement action following previous breaches but I am happy with the outcome and I hope that this is an end to this matter and Mr Gulenc realises the error of his ways”.
Story posted: 26 June 2015
It’s Speak Cornish week again and this year at Maga we are encouraging everyone to talk about what they like!
The Cornish for “I like…” is “Da yw Genev…” and this is the theme of this year’s #SpeakCornish week which runs from 4 to 13 July.
MAGA is inviting people to contribute drawings, photos or film of people using “Da yw genev…” to tell us what they like. During the week helpful vocabulary will be released on www.learncornishnow.com/speakcornishweek.
Last year the website www.learncornishnow.com received an impressive 10,000 extra visitors during #SpeakCornish week, and over 200 individuals and businesses posted films of themselves using Cornish online, ran promotions and competitions and arranged activities. The tag #SpeakCornish made half a million impressions in one hour!
There are a lot of events to get involved in during the week as well, ranging from conversation evenings, to film screenings, children’s storytimes and promotional stands!
So whatever you do, #SpeakCornish in the week; go along to one of the activities, join us online, or find us on our stand - starting at Bodmin Riding on 4th July.
"Have some fun uploading your film shot in Cornish and watching other people's contributions" said Julian German, the Council’s Cabinet Member for Environment and Culture and Chair of the Cornish Language Partnership. “There was a fantastic response last year and we hope that even more people join in this year!"
Story posted: 29 June 2015
An art dealer from Hayle in Cornwall is set to be sentenced on 16 July after entering last minute guilty pleas to seven charges of fraud at Truro Crown Court on 24 June.
David Carter, 57 of Prospect Close, Hayle had initially denied claims that he deliberately sold cheap imitations as genuine works of art. He had also denied deliberately exaggerating the value of paintings supposedly by famous artists such as Alfred Wallis and John Brett. Faced with evidence from scientists and art experts from across the country, Carter pleaded guilty to seven of the charges.
The Court heard that Carter bought paintings for as little as £300 from ‘unreliable sources’ such as websites called “any old tatt” and “credit crunch my arse”. He then advertised them for sale through his gallery or via his website describing them as being by well-known artists and with a price tag of up to £65,000, a potential mark-up of 20,000%.
The prosecution, brought by Cornwall Council Trading Standards, followed a three year investigation and was described by Judge Harvey Clarke as “remarkable and brave”.
Story posted 25 June 2015
Four rising stars from Cornwall’s prestigious art scene will exhibit their work this summer in one of Europe's largest and most successful Celtic festivals, the Festival Interceltique de Lorient, in Brittany.
Cornwall will showcase the works of up-and-coming Cornish artists James Eddy, Sophie Capron, Leo Sharp and Zenna Tagney to an audience of up to seven hundred thousand visitors from around the globe from Friday 7 to Sunday 16 August.
All four artists responded successfully to Cornwall Council's invitation last November to submit applications to exhibit at the famous festival.
Viv Gillard, curator and art co-ordinator for the Cornish collective in Lorient, said: “This is an exciting opportunity to showcase Cornwall and raise the profile of our home-grown talent. Undoubtedly, this will support our local artists’ ambitions to secure national and international recognition.
“Each artist is set to unveil a variety of breath-taking and fascinating works of art ranging from James Eddy's land art installations and Zenna Tagney's enchanting ceramic sculptures to Sophie Capron's captivating abstract paintings and a series of images from photographer Leo Sharp. All exhibitors have spent many months planning and there will be something for everyone to admire.”
“The Lorient festival is a really important showcase for Cornwall,” said Councillor Julian German, Cornwall Council portfolio holder for Economy and Culture. “As one of the largest inter-Celtic festivals in the world there is a great deal of empathy and support for Cornwall. This provides a great opportunity to show what we have to offer and I am sure that our artists will, as in previous years, not only demonstrate the skill, creativity and professionalism that Cornish artists have in abundance, but will also wow the audiences.”
This summer Cornwall and the Isle of Man share the spotlight as the showcased areas at the festival, now in its 45th year. The Isle of Man has selected four artists to exhibit alongside those from Cornwall, adding the paintings of Juan Moore, Julie Roberts and Eileen Schaer, along with Will Suttton's parkour film submission.
The paintings will be displayed during the month-long art exhibition which opens at the start of the festival and continue throughout August in the 'Galerie Du Faouëdic' in Lorient's town centre.
The festival is a ten-day celebration of art, music, dance, film and food, which features a three hour parade of costumed dancers, pipe bands and musicians as part of a full programme of concerts, films and entertainment. Cornwall and the Isle of Man will also share a large pavilion presenting information on culture and tourism, hosting performances and serving the best of our food and drink. Cornwall’s presence at the festival is supported by Cornwall Council.
Story posted 25 June 2015
Cornwall Fire and Rescue Service (CFRS) has been praised in an independent review for its commitment to community engagement, equality and diversity.
As a result, the Service is now only one of eleven fire and rescue services in the UK to be rated as 'Excellent' under the national Fire and Rescue Service Equality Framework.
During a three day visit to CFRS, the peer review panel met with staff, partners and members of the public to gain an insight into the organisation's approach to managing equality and diversity.
In gaining the 'Excellent' rating, CFRS had to demonstrate that the service was making a difference under the Framework's five key themes:
- Knowing your communities
- Leadership, partnership and organisational commitment
- Engagement and satisfaction
- Responsive services and customer care
- A skilled and committed workforce
Paul Walker, Chief Fire Officer of Cornwall Fire and Rescue Service, said: “I am immensely proud of all my staff from across CFRS and the Council’s Community Safety service. This Local Government Association (LGA) and Chief Fire Officers Association (CFOA) led peer review confirms our diverse and wide reaching front line role delivers positive outcomes for residents, businesses and visitors to Cornwall. Our focus on Community Engagement, Equality and Diversity (CEED) has now been formally acknowledged with our Service assessed as operating at the ‘Excellent’ level of the Fire and Rescue Service Equality Framework.
“This demonstrates we know our local communities and those most at risk; that our community engagement is wide reaching and levels of satisfaction high; that we deliver responsive services with a focus on customer care and that there is a commitment to our CEED agenda throughout our service and partner organisations. It also shows a skilled and professional workforce with a positive workplace culture where staff are delivering excellent services on a daily basis. I would like to thank all staff, Members and colleagues from Cornwall Council as well as our partners for their support in the months leading up to and throughout the peer review process.”
Councillor Geoff Brown, Cornwall Council portfolio holder for Communities, said: “It is a privilege to work with such a committed team. This is a huge tribute to all our dedicated staff, partners and members who have worked, and continue to work, to take the service forward in an innovative and visionary manner.
“The review panel were especially impressed with the close partnership working with other blue-light services at our tri-service station in Hayle, which is unique. They also commented on the breadth of commitment across a council-governed fire authority where community safety and prevention play such a key role. I was delighted the team recognised and valued the strong, supportive, family feel of the whole service.”
Cornwall Council has joined with social care providers across Cornwall to launch a new campaign to attract staff to work in the care sector.
The joint recruitment campaign, which is being funded by the Council, has been developed following recognition that the care sector – one of the most important employment sectors in Cornwall, is facing significant recruitment issues. The value and importance of the care workforce cannot be under estimated – working with service users and their families to live independently within their communities, providing care to the people that need it, when they need it, is immensely rewarding and highly regarded by the users of services.
The building of our care workforce is of paramount importance to both the Council and care providers across Cornwall and we are working together to raise awareness of the opportunities available for people interested in working in the sector. Initially having the right values and life skills is more important than experience and qualifications as there is plenty of scope to develop both skill and career development. If you are able to build relationships based on trust and have good communication skills, including being an effective listener, then we would like to hear from you.
Anyone interested in a career in care please visit www.cornwall.gov.uk/youcare or phone 01872 323800. You will then be contacted direct by care providers who can provide more information about the roles available, rates of pay and benefits, including travel expenses and training opportunities.
New partnership calls on private landlords and property agents to meet decency standard and provide well managed properties in Cornwall
A new online resource for private landlords and letting agents is being launched to help raise property and management standards in Cornwall.
A partnership between Cornwall Council, local housing professionals and landlord representative groups has created the Cornwall Responsible Landlord Scheme.
The scheme is being introduced to support private landlords and lettings agents to offer safe, well managed and better quality accommodation whilst keeping up to date with what the law requires of them.
The rented sector has expanded dramatically in the last decade and in Cornwall there is a thriving private rented sector offering high standards and well managed accommodation across the County. However sitting alongside the good there is the bad.
It is believed that in the region of 20,000 rented properties in Cornwall do not meet the proper standard, often presenting risks to tenants.
To help with this the scheme introduces the Cornwall Rental Standard, a new rental standard for the private rented sector designed to support landlords to identify and address the most common hazards found in dwellings and reduce the harm that they can cause.
The partnership encourages all private landlords and letting agents operating in Cornwall to register on the scheme using a simple online process where the address of the rented property is not asked for.
Joyce Duffin Cornwall Council cabinet member for Housing and Environment said: “I believe that Cornwall Council is striking the right balance between regulation and support by introducing this scheme. Many improving and existing good landlords can take advantage of the support this scheme offers to help them find the right path through what is sometimes a very muddy pool of available advice, guidance and legislation for the private rented sector.”
Ruth Clarke, Cornwall Residential Landlord Association said: “CRLA welcomes and encourages the initiative to promote good landlords in Cornwall. The amount of legislation and regulation surrounding the private rented sector can be confusing meaning that both new landlords and those with many years of experience need guidance and help at times. We look forward to working with our partners in this scheme and seeing an improvement in the standard of accommodation offered to tenants.”
Iain Maitland, South West Landlords Association said “South West Landlords Association believes in and will help promote Local Authority initiatives which educate landlords, letting agents and tenants. Landlords who know and observe their responsibilities deserve recognition.
Ken Staunton from the National Landlords Association said: “The National Landlords Association (NLA) supports initiatives that aim to improve standards within the private rented sector and we believe that the Cornwall Responsible Landlord Scheme (CRLS)) will contribute greatly to raising awareness of landlords’ responsibilities. The CRLS offers sound advice and guidance and will hopefully serve as a first step towards more landlords achieving accreditation while professionalising approaches within the sector.”
Linda Spelman, representing the Association of Residential Letting Agents said: “ARLA is fully supportive of initiatives aimed at raising professional standards across the private rented sector. We have campaigned widely for more appropriate regulation of letting agents for a number of years and therefore welcome these knowledge-based initiatives”.
Find out more on the Responsible Landlord Scheme webpages www.cornwall.gov.uk/responsiblelandlord
A section of the A30 between Temple and Higher Carblake will be closed for six nights during the next fortnight as work begins to dual the carriageway.
Overnight closures - between 8pm and 6am nightly- will start at 8pm on Monday 29 June and end at 6am on Friday 3 July. The road will also be closed overnight between 8pm on Monday 6 July and 6am on Tuesday 7 July.
The works - to remove current road markings on the highway and install average speed cameras - have been scheduled to avoid weekend and commuter traffic.
During the overnight closures, motorists will be diverted along the A39 and A395 - the usual diversion route which is put in place when this stretch of the highway is closed.
“With more than 39,000 vehicles using the A30 at Temple during peak season, our priority is to keep traffic moving and this at the forefront of planning for any restrictions that are introduced,” said Jeremy Edwards, from Cornwall Council’s Transportation Service. “This is why we will only be closing the A30 at night when only absolutely necessary and during periods when we know traffic levels will be at a minimum.
“We would like to reassure motorists that for the majority of the works, a minimum of two lanes of traffic will be open and delays are not expected to be significantly different to those normally experienced.”
From Monday 29 June the following restrictions will also be in place:
- Right turns from local roads on to the A30 will be closed to ensure the smooth flow of traffic and to make the site safer for both motorists and road workers.
- The Trewardle Road junction will be permanently closed. This will be replaced by a new junction slightly further along the highway.
- The ‘Cardinham Gap’ (the central reserve crossing opposite the Cardinham Airfield Road) will also be closed to all but site traffic.
Mick Martin, Public Liaison Officer for Kier, said: “During a recent exhibition a number of residents raised concerns about the diversion signs that have been placed in and around the villages as they believed this was for diverting A30 through traffic when the trunk road was subject to overnight road closures.
“We can assure the public that these signs are advisory local diversion routes to assist local traffic finding their way during the initial phase of the work. When the A30 is closed – which will only be at night - all through traffic will be diverted well away from surrounding villages. Special measures are in place to cater for the residents who live directly on the A30.”
The A30 Temple to Higher Carblake dual carriageway improvement scheme, which is being led by Cornwall Council in partnership with the Department for Transport and Highways England, is expected to take 19 months to complete, with two lanes open in each direction ready for the school holiday period in summer 2016.
Read more about the A30 Temple to Higher Carblake improvement scheme
Cornwall Trading Standards is sending out two warnings to residents this week following an increasing number of reports over the last month of dodgy tradesmen offering home maintenance and gardening work, and intelligence about pushy salesmen.
The recent reports suggest that vehicles purporting to be from the Council are offering to re-surface driveways with left over tarmac.
Leanne McLean, Lead Officer for Doorstep Crime said, “Our message couldn’t be simpler. Do not buy anything from anyone on your doorstep. Genuine traders do not need to go door-to-door touting for work. Anyone knocking on your door offering you something, no matter how good it sounds, is more than likely up to no good. Cornwall Council or their contractors would never allow staff to offer left over tarmac to residents. Anyone stating otherwise is clearly not a genuine trader.”
The other warning relates to home mobility sellers with recent intelligence suggesting that large national firms are using aggressive sales tactics to sell mobility items such as reclining chairs to residents.
Customers are bamboozled into agreeing to purchase items at hugely inflated prices and are not being allowed to cancel their contacts.
Leanne McLean, Lead Officer for Doorstep Crime said, “These companies prey on the vulnerable, often spending hours in their homes persuading them that they need mobility equipment at inflated prices. The companies appear legitimate in every way and are often not reported to us as victims often believe they are acting within the law. They are not. Pushy and aggressive sales tactics are a criminal offence which Trading Standards take very seriously.”
If you or someone you know has fallen victim to rogue traders, or if you have any intelligence relating to incidents, please contact Trading Standards via the Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03457 040506. All information is gratefully received and could be vital to investigations.
The Ship Inn in Looe has become the latest business in Cornwall to sign up for the Council’s Community Toilet Scheme, making their facilities open to members of the public without the need to make a purchase.
Under the Cornwall Community Toilet Scheme local businesses like hotels, pubs, restaurants and shops are being encouraged to work with the Council to make more clean, safe and accessible toilets available to the public.
Members of the public can use the toilet facilities during opening hours without having to make a purchase. Businesses have the right to refuse entry in exceptional circumstances. Participating businesses display a sticker in their window to indicate which facilities are available, this includes wheelchair access and baby changing.
Businesses taking part in the scheme will also be promoted on the Visit Cornwall website as well as being linked from the Council’s website. Signage and branding will also be provided.
“I am delighted that The Ship Inn has signed up to our Community Toilet Scheme,” said Councillor Edwina Hannaford, Cornwall Council portfolio holder for Environment, Heritage and Planning. “The Ship Inn has demonstrated their community spirit by helping to increase toilet provision in the town, which can be under pressure during peak times.
“Community toilet schemes run in other areas of the country have had benefits for local businesses, not only increasing visitors to their own establishments, but also to their local area.”
“We love welcoming visitors to Looe so it’s great to be part of the this scheme and open our facilities to the local community and visitors to our town” said Fergal Bolger, Landlord of the Ship Inn.”
The photo shows Fergal Bolger, Landlord of the Ship Inn and Edwina Hannaford, Cornwall Council portfolio holder for Environment, Heritage and Planning launching the Community Toilet Scheme for the Ship Inn.
Story posted on 12 March
Luke Watson of Barripper, Camborne and David Watson (unrelated) of Great Wheal Seton, Camborne have pleaded guilty to a total of four offences under the Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations 2008 and the Fraud Act 2006 relating to the unsafe and unregistered installation of three wood burning stoves, and for fraudulently charging for work not undertaken between November 2011 and October 2012.
Luke Watson appeared at Truro Magistrates court on the 02 March 2015 and pleaded guilty to three charges, he was fined 3 x £550 and ordered to pay a £15 victim surcharge and costs of £2,113.17.
David Watson appearing at the same time pleaded guilty to one charge, he was fined £400 and ordered to pay a £15 victim surcharge and costs of £301.88
Luke Watson, at the time of these installations trading as “County Stoves”, was registered with HETAS, the official government registered body in relation to solid fuel heating appliances. Work was undertaken by the Watsons at properties in Goldstithney and Greenbottom, which was proved to be incomplete, potentially unsafe and not legally registered with the governing body of HETAS. In addition to this, some work was fraudulently charged for when it was not completed. Following a complaint by a consumer, Trading Standards launched an investigation into the historical activities of County Stoves, which was no longer trading.
Anthea Durant, Trading Standards Authorised Officer, and Investigating Officer in this case said, “We are very pleased with the result we have had at Court and feel that the fines issued reflect the seriousness of the issues uncovered. Unfortunately, because Mr Watson failed to engage with our investigation at any stage, we are worried that there are other consumers who engaged County Stoves to undertake work at their home, and we would urge anyone who does remember employing them to check the registration status of their appliance with HETAS, to ensure that it was properly registered.”
Posted on 5 March 2015
Cornwall Council Chairman John Wood welcomed a group of teachers and students from the region of Castilla y León of Spain to New County Hall in Truro on Monday March 02 as they prepare to visit 18 secondary and primary schools across Cornwall.
The visitors will be sharing good teaching practice and, in the case of the Spanish students, teaching Spanish to primary children. The visit is funded by the European Union education programme, Comenius Regio.
“We are delighted to see so many colleagues and young people from Spain” said John Wood, “and pleased to be able to reciprocate the hospitality shown to our teachers and students when they visited Spain in October.”
Over the next week, the teachers will observe classes and help with teaching where appropriate. In Spain, learning a foreign language is given a high profile with many subjects taught through English, even at primary school. The students- aged between 15 and 18- will bring some authentic Spanish songs, games and stories to primary classrooms in Cornwall, acting as junior language assistants and staying with their Cornish partners who did the same in places like Segovia and Burgos in October.
“The students who went to Spain from Cornwall had a wonderful time.” commented Andrew Wallis, Cornwall Council Cabinet member for young people.
“They did an excellent job in the classrooms there. It’s very important that as a Council we encourage initiatives such as this which give our young people experience and confidence as well as vital foreign language skills.”
The EU Regio programme funds regional education projects which can act as a springboard for future collaboration between schools. Helston College is already receiving students from Salamanca on an exchange basis and other schools such as Redruth (with Palencia) and Budehaven (with Avila) are actively planning similar projects. Treloweth Community Primary School in Redruth is using this project as a stimulus to apply for further EU funding to train teachers with its partner school in Soria.
The schools taking part are Bude Junior School, Budehaven Community School, Torpoint Community College, Portreath Community Primary School, Newquay Tretherras School, Treleigh Community Primary School, Redruth School, Parc Eglos School, Helston Community College, Bosvigo Primary School, Richard Lander School, Treloweth Community Primary School, Pool Academy, St Stephens, Launceston, Community Academy, Penrice Academy, Carclaze Community Primary School, Wadebridge Primary Academy and Wadebridge Community School.
The Regio project is managed by Cornwall Learning and led by Rosie Sleep, Languages Consultant, with the active assistance of coordinators in each participating school and in collaboration with the regional education authority of Castilla y León.
Photographs showing Cornwall Council Chairman John Wood with teachers and students from Spain.
Posted on 5 March 2015
At the meeting of Cornwall Council on 19 May 2015, Chief Executive Andrew Kerr gave a Stewardship of the Council report to members. He talked about significant successes including:
- investment in transport infrastructure
- improvements in key services and
- more joined up working with partners.
These were all underpinned by the commitment of staff who are helping to deliver savings of over £31m through the collective agreement.
Story posted 19 May 2015
A group of ten young people aged between 16 and 25 years old who are not in employment, education or training (NEETS) celebrated the completion of a 12 week Prince’s Trust TEAM programme personal development course at the Eden Project on Wednesday 15 April.
Cornwall Fire and Rescue Service and the Prince’s Trust TEAM programme 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.
The programme is centred on developing team work skills which saw the TEAM transform a waste piece of ground at Mevagissey Activity Centre. The centre is used by Scope and their customers and the transformation has given them and the rest of the community a beautiful, interactive garden.
The young people spent two days digging and flattening the ground before laying membrane to stop weeds destroying the area. They then made footboards to make a path, making sure it was wide enough for wheelchair users to get around the whole of the garden.
Raised flower beds were then built and filled with beautiful flowers that were donated from Wyevale garden centre and Pentewan Valley Nurseries. A garden area was created with benches placed in them so people now have an area to sit and relax outside next to rockeries that were also built by the young people. Finally a boat was used as a centre piece flower bed that gave the garden its finishing touch.
Gordan from Mevagissey Activity Centre said: “The team of young people sent by the Prince’s Trust were fantastic. They planned thoroughly and consulted regularly taking into account everyone who is likely to use the garden on a regular basis. It’s so nice that Scope’s customers get somewhere to go on a nice, sunny day. It’s also given them a responsibility to look after the garden and its upkeep. The area they worked on looks amazing now, especially when you think it was just an end to the car park. I’m delighted with the end product and so happy that the young people voted to do this as their community project. Thank you to all concerned.”
As well as the community project the group also took part in team building activities and challenges, a week-long action packed residential trip to Devon as well as receiving advice on how to write a CV and gain nationally recognised qualifications.
Cornwall Council cabinet member for Homes and Communities Geoff Brown said: “Cornwall Fire and Rescue Service have 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.”
Team leader Sam Spooner said: “I’m delighted that the participants have come so far in just 12 weeks. They have achieved so much and each of them should be proud of what they have done. I hope they take their new skills and keep up their levels of confidence and motivation to ensure they enter further education, training or employment. The final presentation is all about them show casing how well they have done the past 3 months. I wish each and every one of them the very best for the future.”
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”.
Story posted 20 April 2015
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