Cornwall Council has welcomed today’s announcement from the Department for Communities and Local Government that Penzance has been awarded £10,000 to support work already being undertaken in the town.
The funding will support the work being undertaken by stakeholders including Cornwall Council, Penzance Town Council, businesses and residents, on a number of schemes such as the revival of Jubilee Pool and consulting on a Neighbourhood Plan.
The award to Penzance reflects the collaborative work being undertaken in the local community to improve the town and add to the economic regeneration for the wider area.
Julian German, Cornwall Council cabinet member for economy and culture said: “Coastal communities are an essential element of our local economy and there is a strong community resolve in Penzance as everyone works together to improve their area. I am delighted their efforts have been recognised in this manner”
As a result of being named as one of the pilot areas, Penzance will now be eligible to bid into a £3million Coastal Revival Scheme announced by DCLG last month which provides assistance to coastal community efforts to improve their local economy.
Story posted on 20 March 2015
The culmination of a lengthy investigation by Cornwall Council’s Public Protection and Business Support services Animal Health Team supported by the local Animal and Plant Health Agency was finally reached in Truro Magistrates Court today (20 March 2015).
Paul and Thomas Collins of Trenoweth Farm, Gweek were sentenced to 4 months in prison, suspended for 2 years; a 100 hours community service order and were banned from keeping pigs, cattle and sheep for the rest of their lives, this was suspended for 10 weeks to allow the brothers to dispose of their animals. Both brothers were also ordered to pay £12,000 each in costs. The brothers were given until December to pay these costs in full.
The Magistrates Court Trial began on the 21 January 2015 and after several adjournments concluded on 20 March 2015. Evidence was heard from the Council’s Animal Health Inspectors as well as vets from the Animal and Plant Health Agency. The defendants pleaded not-guilty and showed no remorse for their actions. They were convicted of 16 charges under the animal welfare act.
In November 2012, Thomas James and Paul Anthony Collins, of Trenoweth Farm, Gweek were investigated for offences of fraud relating to TB reactors. A farm visit in relation to those offences uncovered appalling conditions on the farm. Since 2012 the farm has been visited over 12 times. At each visit further offences were discovered.
Severely lame cows were not treated for over 2 months; 3 cows that had collapsed were not given veterinary treatment, food or water and pigs were kept in a swamp with little food and no dry lying area, they had only mud to sleep on. Two of these pigs had also been starved to the point that the bones of their spines and ribs could be seen.
Over the course of the investigation several animals were put to sleep to prevent any further suffering.
The Judge said the Collins brothers had rejected advice and warnings and, in Thomas Collins case, in the most vehement of terms. The farm had systemic failures to identify and treat animals that required treatment. He found the lameness in the cows had developed over many days and had caused suffering for several days. The Judge felt that Thomas James Collins’ claim that the case was malicious and trumped up was not supportable and that the prosecution case was persistently compelling.
Cornwall Council cabinet member for communities Geoff Brown said “The Public Protection and Business Support Service will always strive to assist Cornish businesses, including farms. However, when a case of serious neglect such as this is discovered they will take appropriate action. The Collins brothers have shown total disregard for the most basic of needs of animal in their care. This was not an isolated incident but involved numerous charges and I find it unacceptable that in this day and age people are unable to give outdoor pigs a warm, dry straw bed; treat injured animals and to ensure that animals have sufficient feed to prevent emaciation.”
Animal cruelty - first image: Emaciated cow
Animal cruelty - second image: Emaciated pig
Posted on 20 March 2015
The new European investment programme for Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly is poised to get underway following agreement with the European Union.
The Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP), Cornwall Council and the Council of the Isles of Scilly have been working together with the UK Government to finalise negotiations.
The LEP said it was hopeful that the first ‘calls’ for EU-funded projects would be made in a matter of days.
The new programme, through which some £500 million of funding will be available from now until 2020, will be called the Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Growth Programme.
LEP Chairman Chris Pomfret said: “The LEP and its partners, including Cornwall Council and the Council of the Isles of Scilly, have been working hard behind the scenes to finalise these negotiations and get our programme moving, so this is very good news.
“Together we have secured significant commitments in shaping how the money will be spent, including the creation of a single investment programme that helps us pull together different funding streams for maximum impact.
“We also have the freedom to develop a locally tailored programme of business support through the creation of our own Growth Hub, which will ensure that access to EU funds and projects by local businesses is as simple as we can make it.”
Mr Pomfret said as a result of the negotiations, and its status as a Less Developed Region, Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly would be the only region in England able to access specific EU funds for transport infrastructure including road and rail investments, and support for green and low carbon projects.
And the Government had promised to work with the LEP and local authorities to fast-track community-led investment projects.
He added: “Although we and most other LEPs have not ended up with the level of local control and decision making that was initially promised by the UK Government, we and our partners have secured the best deal we could and the focus now has got to be on spending the money to create jobs and boost our economy.”
Julian German, cabinet member for economy and culture at Cornwall Council, which has played a pivotal role in the negotiations, said: "Whilst we are disappointed that we have not been offered a greater level of local control over our EU funding we are pleased that it will start to flow in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly. Local involvement is key to delivering an effective programme to address the systemic economic issues that Cornwall faces. We will continue to support partners in ensuring that our local voice is heard as we move into delivering investments for the region."
Amanda Martin, Chairman of the Council of the Isles of Scilly, said: “The Islands have benefited greatly from European funding and we look forward to working with partners so our businesses can benefit from these prospective investments.”
Toby Parkins, President of Cornwall Chamber of Commerce, added: “The business community will be breathing a sigh of relief that we’ve finally got our EU Growth Programme over the line. What’s important now is that they are kept fully informed about how they can access and benefit from this funding as projects come on stream later this year.”
The next step will see the Government publish the first round of ‘calls’ for the delivery of the first EU-funded projects in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly. Investment priorities include support for business, new workspace and skills development.
Further information and any announcements on calls will be available on the Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Growth Programme website.
Posted on 19 March 2015
To celebrate National Apprenticeship Week 2015, Cornwall Learning Education Business Partnership organised a “Have a Go” day for Torpoint Community College on Thursday 12 March where local employers provided ‘tasters’ – bite sized opportunities to try out work-based skills. Year 9 students found out about careers and the pathways to a dream job – including further education and apprenticeships.
Have a Go activities included how to windsurf with a simulator with the South West Lakes Trust, discovering bushcraft with Survival Wisdom and learning how to code with Bluefruit Software. Also offering”Have a Go” activities were: NatWest Bank, Cornwall College Hair and Beauty, the Army and Springboard South West.
“The ‘Have a Go’ day at Torpoint Community College was a fantastic opportunity for students to learn about the world of work and it raised the profile of skills, vocational training and apprenticeships for young people.” said Kate Whetter, Education Projects Manager at Cornwall Learning Education Business Partnership.
“Today’s ‘Have a Go’ day was great fun and our students really enjoyed the activities. As a school we really appreciated the fact that employers are willing to give up their time to give students a taste of such a variety of careers. Helping students make informed decisions about their future is about the most important role schools and employers can play. Our students really benefitted from the experience and especially in this part in Cornwall, students often find it hard to know what is out there for them.” Said Becky Lear Assistant Head.
Matthew Dodkins of Bluefruit Software said “These ‘Have a Go’ sessions are a perfect way of sharing the skills we look for in employees with students. They give students the chance to try programming activities which are close to the ‘real world’, bridging the employment/education gap.
“For Springboard, it is extremely important for our hospitality partners to take part in ‘Have a Go’ days, to ensure students are made aware of the industry and the fantastic range of employment options within it” said Ele Porritt Cornwall Programme manager for Springboard South West.
Story posted on 19 March 2015
Stephen McCann of Pitt Lane, St Columb Major, Cornwall pleaded guilty at Truro Crown Court on 16 March 2015 to three offences relating to shoddy building work, overcharging and failure to give cancellation notices to two elderly female customers in a case investigated by Cornwall Trading Standards.
McCann was sentenced to 6 months imprisonment for each offence, suspended for a period of 18 months, to run concurrently and a 2 month curfew to run from 7pm until 7am daily. He was also ordered to pay £1,140.66 compensation to one of his victims and £4,000 costs.
McCann, who also goes by the name of Jones, was at the time of this offending subject to a three year Conditional Discharge from the courts relating to similar offences committed in July 2012, also investigated by Trading Standards.
Trading Standards were first alerted to these new offences following a call by one of McCann’s victims. Door to door enquiries in the vicinity unearthed further offending at a neighbouring property. McCann had failed to issue both customers with written cancellation rights for the work carried out. McCann had also completed the work to a very poor standard, according to a report by a chartered building surveyor, who quoted that rectification work was required to the tune of £1140.66.
McCann was sentenced by Judge Carr for three offences, two under the Fraud Act 2006 for failing to disclose information required under the Cancellation of Contracts made in a Consumer’s Home or place of Work etc Regulations 2008, and one offence under the Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations 2008 for failing to meet the requirements of professional diligence, relating to poor quality workmanship in the field of property maintenance.
Nigel Strick Fair Trading Team Manager for Cornwall Trading Standards said: “The persistent nature of this traders offending has been a concern to Trading Standards. We hope that this sentence will convince the trader to mend their ways, proving that crime does not pay.”
Story posted on 18 March 2015
Pathways to Health – largest interactive careers event takes place in the Knowledge Spa at Royal Cornwall Hospital
On Friday 6 March, 300 young people from schools and colleges in Cornwall visited The Knowledge Spa in Truro to take part in the county’s health care careers event for young people. Organised by Cornwall Learning’s Education Business Partnership in partnership The Royal Cornwall Hospital Trust and Plymouth University, EBP South West and Truro-Penwith College, Pathways to Health was aimed at 14-19 year olds considering a career in medicine, healthcare, engineering or IT and the allied health professions at technical or professional level.
Students had the chance to explore the latest revolutionary technologies used in health and medicine through interactive workshops and stands, guided by health professionals and employers.
Workshops included Operating Department Practice, a simulated ward as well as a Royal Society of Chemistry workshop. They visited interactive stands staffed by health professionals, scientists and technologists representing Royal Cornwall Hospitals Trust, Plymouth University and other healthcare organisations and industry representatives. Student ambassadors from Plymouth University enabled the smooth running of the day. The wide range of stands offered information on everything from Medical Physics to Optometry. Students even had the chance to discover the contents of an ambulance and their purpose courtesy of the South West Ambulance Foundation Trust.
“The event definitely had the WOW Factor” said Kate Whetter, Education Projects Manager at Cornwall Learning Education Business Partnership. “We were able to showcase some of the most exciting advances in healthcare science and technology here in Cornwall and open young people’s eyes to the opportunities the future holds”
Nick Macklin, Director of Human Resources and Organisational Development at Royal Cornwall Hospitals NHS Trust said: “We are delighted to support this event and help inspire young people to pursue a career in healthcare. We employ over 5000 people in a wide range of roles and this event during National Careers Week is a great way to showcase the opportunities and innovative services right here in Cornwall.”
Robyn Clark, Outreach Events Team Leader, Plymouth University said: “Plymouth University is committed to training the healthcare professionals of the future and this was a great event to highlight the range of opportunities open to graduates”
‘Truro and Penwith College is delighted to support this event. STEM provision at our college is based upon a foundation of strong subject development, improving the skills and outcomes of learners. Students will benefit from the cutting edge technologies demonstrated at this event to make informed choices in their work, their future careers and further study.’ Said Paul Britton STEM coordinator at Truro and Penwith College.
Charlotte Molyneux from EBP-SW said ‘We were thrilled to be part of this exciting event providing the opportunity for students from across the region to gain insight into the wide range of exciting careers within the healthcare industry’
Exhibitors included :
- Optometry, Psychology, Human Movement and Function Laboratory - Plymouth University Faculty of Health and Human Sciences –Optometry and Psychology
- Plymouth University School of Medicine and Dentistry – dentistry
- Plymouth University School of Nursing and Midwifery – simulated ward
- Cornwall Mobility Centre, Midwifery, Volunteer Services, Medical Physics, Speech and Language Therapy – all from Royal Cornwall Hospital
- Cornwall Stroke Service,
- Public Health and Protection, Care Ambassadors,– Cornwall Council
- South West Ambulance Foundation Trust
- Exeter European Centre for Environment and Human Health
- The University of St Mark and St John
- Royal Society of Chemistry
- Army Careers
The event was attended by Penrice Academy, Cornwall College – Camborne, Mullion Comprehensive, Wadebridge School, Bodmin College, Sir James Smith's Community School, Callington Community College 6th Form, Camborne Science and Int'l Academy, Penair School, Mounts Bay Academy, Truro- Penwith College, Fowey River Academy and Truro High.
Story posted 16 March 2015
A group of parents will be celebrating their achievements in completing an innovative course run by Cornwall Fire and Rescue Service’s Phoenix Project at a presentation event at St Austell Community Fire Station on Friday 13 March.
The course, which was developed by Cornwall Fire and Rescue Service (CFRS) aims to provide support and training to parents. The course was funded by ESF (Economic Social Fund) and is one of the three pilot courses which will be running over the next few months.
All participants were given the opportunity to gain an APT Entry level 3 qualification together with the HeartStart accreditation in emergency life support techniques. The group also took part in a range of fire service activities to promote teamwork, communication skills and raise confidence.
Throughout the course participants get the opportunity to learn and develop transferable skills through participating in fire and rescue service drills and activities. These skills can then be taken forward to help the individuals to identify future employment, training or voluntary opportunities.
CFRS Acting Chief Fire Officer Paul Walker said: “I am encouraged to see how Phoenix team has been able to use the work and reputation of the fire and rescue service to help this group of people develop useful new skills.”
Geoff Brown, Cornwall Council cabinet member for communities said: “These courses are an excellent example of how we can really make a difference to the lives of individuals. I am delighted to celebrate the people who have embraced this opportunity to learn from the best.”
Story posted 13 March
The Leader of Cornwall Council John Pollard and Jeremy Rowe, the Council’s Cabinet Member for Localism, met with representatives of the Cornwall for Change group at County Hall on Monday, 9 March.
Speaking after the meeting Council Leader John Pollard said “I am pleased to have the opportunity to meet with representatives of Cornwall for Change. This was a friendly and positive meeting which gave everyone the opportunity to outline some of the issues they have. We have listened carefully to a number of concerns and hope that everyone will now work together to try and address them.
“We need to work with all our town and parish councils to ensure that we continue to provide vital services for the people of Cornwall. We are very happy to work with Cornwall for Change and other local and community groups to achieve this”.
“We have presented a dossier of issues and questions raised by Town and Parish Councils across Cornwall” says Paul Dyer, Chairman of Cornwall for Change “and are delighted that both John Pollard and Jeremy Rowe are giving these their full attention. The topics range from housing and planning, through to capital and waste projects (raised by Cornwall Waste Forum), arms-length companies and serious pollution incidents, so we don’t expect everything to be solved at once. However, we look forward to our next scheduled meeting and hope that this promising beginning will materialize into a positive change for Cornwall.”
Further discussions will be held over the coming months.
Story posted on 12 March 2015
Cornwall Council has welcomed today’s announcement from the Chancellor for the Exchequer of funding for a brand new fleet of Intercity trains.
During his Budget speech to Parliament, George Osborne MP announced funding for the new trains to cover the Penzance to London Paddington route.
Replacing the current 40-year old high speed train stock, the new Intercity vehicles will lead to faster and more reliable services for Cornwall and the West and reduce journey times.
Combined with last year’s announcement of £146.6m of improvements to the railway network in Cornwall, today’s news paves the way for transformation of rail travel in Cornwall, said Councillor Bert Biscoe, Cornwall Council portfolio holder for Transport.
Cllr Biscoe added: “Cornwall owes much of its modern identity and economic structure to the railway and, as the realities of climate change become increasingly clear, that relationship is set to evolve in ways which are both essential and exciting. We have worked hard with the Government, Network Rail and the franchisee, First Great Western, to develop a modern railway which connects us strategically and services our local communities.
“The commitment to new intercity trains is excellent news coming on top of the £145m investment in resignalling the mainline to enable us to run a half-hourly shuttle by day and, hopefully, freight by night, to maintain engines and to operate a competitive night sleeper. These are all long-term investments which will affect the immediate future and render Cornwall resilient and positive as the environmental going gets tough.”
Chris Pomfret, chairman of the Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Local Enterprise Partnership, said: “This is fantastic news for our rail network. Connectivity is critical to our business community and these new trains will enhance the reliability and comfort of rail travel in our region, building on the significant investment we have secured in upgrading mainline signalling and the sleeper service to Penzance. It means we will finally have a railway that is fit for the 21st century.”
Safer Cornwall and Devon and Cornwall Police are once again giving the public the opportunity to ‘Have your say’ through a joint survey to measure how safe people feel living in Cornwall, and to identify the issues that concern them most.
The survey results will be compared with last year’s results and the knowledge gained will be included in the strategic assessment of community safety issues that Safer Cornwall undertakes annually. The Safer Cornwall Strategic Assessment provides a profile of crime and disorder in Cornwall, identifies high-risk people and places, considers future threats and opportunities and the actions that Safer Cornwall and partners are taking to tackle the issues identified.
Members of the public are being encouraged to take part in the survey which is being conducted by Police staff throughout March. The survey only takes a couple of minutes, and you can find it online or paper copies of the survey are available by calling 0300 1234 232
Story posted 06 March 2015
Members of the public are being invited to find out the latest news about the A30 between Temple and Higher Carblake dual carriageway scheme during an exhibition being held at Blisland Village Hall on Monday 23 March.
Taking place between 2pm and 6pm, the exhibition will include drawings of the £56m scheme, featuring information on the construction process, new road layout and junctions. Officers from Cornwall Council, the Highways Agency and contractors Kier Construction will also be on hand to answer questions about the scheme.
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 ready for the school holiday period in summer 2016.
In December 2014 the Government published its Road Investment Strategy. This included a commitment to dual the Carland Cross to Chiverton Cross section of the A30 in Cornwall.
As the first step in assessing potential route options the Highways Agency and Cornwall Council would like to engage with the public to capture the key issues that the Highways Agency will need to consider when developing a new set of proposals for this section of road.
During the events, members of the public will also have an opportunity to learn more about how the scheme will be taken forward.
Drop in sessions will take place on:
- Monday 23 March – Hawkins Arms, Zelah (between 10am and 8pm)
- Tuesday 24 March – Trispen Methodist Chapel (between 10am and 8pm)
- Wednesday 25 March – Starbucks, Chiverton Cross (between 8am and 6pm)
Highways Agency South West Director Andrew Page-Dove said: “Cornwall Council is a key partner and we are delighted to be working with them on these public engagement events and will continue to seek the council’s input as the process continues.
“We have already learnt a lot by working closely with Cornwall Council as they deliver the A30 Temple to Higher Carblake scheme and we wish to continue this collaboration as we deliver the next improvement scheme on the A30.
“We are holding these events to introduce ourselves to the local community, explain what we are planning to do to deliver the commitment in the Roads Investment Strategy, and get initial feedback from the public.”
With the A30 providing the main link in to the county for businesses in Cornwall and hundreds of thousands of motorists each year, the Council wants to ensure that the final scheme is one that works for the majority of residents.
Bert Biscoe, Cornwall Council cabinet member for Transport, said: “Things have moved on since the last scheme was drawn up with increased traffic flows, development and visitors. We want to ensure that the new plans provide Cornwall with an improved road network that is fit for purpose now and in the future.
"This scheme is very important to Cornwall and we will do all we can to support the Agency in developing and delivering improvements to this section of the A30. We are very keen that we take this opportunity to engage with the public and draw out the issues that will need to be considered by the Highways Agency when new proposals are being developed”.
If you are not able to attend the sessions you can still have your say by completing the online questionnaire which can be found on our website pages dedicated to the the A30 Chiverton Cross to Carland Cross improvements. People living along or near the main route will also receive a letter and leaflet about the scheme in the post shortly.
The closing date for comments on this first phase of public engagement is Friday 8 May 2015.
Story posted 17 March 2015
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