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Cornwall Council leader calls on government to tackle regional inequality at research launch in Brussels

Tue, 10/15/2019 - 15:42

New research launched in Brussels today (October 15) reaffirms the need to put in place an ambitious UK regional policy and a UK Shared Prosperity Fund to replace the EU funds UK regions would lose post-Brexit.

The research, by the Conference of Peripheral Maritime Regions (CPMR), confirms that UK regions would have received a minimum of €13 billion under a future EU programme. Cornwall and Isles of Scilly estimates its total investment need to be £100 million a year.

Cornwall Council leader Julian German will host the launch of the CPMR’s revised research, which will be an opportunity for UK regions and stakeholders to discuss the crucial issue of future funding for UK regions.

The CPMR research reveals how regional inequality has grown dramatically in the UK.

By analysing 2019 regional data, the study explains that seven UK regions, including Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly, now qualify as Less Developed Regions. These regions have the greatest development need, and future investment is required through the UK Shared Prosperity Fund.

This is up from the five regions the CPMR identified when the think tank previously published a report in January this year.

Under the current 2014-2020 EU programme, only two regions – Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly and West Wales and the Valleys - qualify as Less Developed Regions. The research clearly demonstrates that regional inequality is increasing in the UK.

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Researchers estimate that UK regions would receive a minimum of €13bn of regional development funding for the 2012-2027 period if we remained in the EU.

In a media interview last month, the Prime Minister promised to plug this shortfall in funding with a discrete fund for Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly through the long-awaited Shared Prosperity Fund (SPF).

Cornwall Council Leader Julian German said: “Amidst the ongoing political uncertainty, the Prime Minister has personally committed to replace EU funding in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly like-for-like with a dedicated fund that could be worth up to £100 million a year for the next decade.

“In Cornwall, thanks to sound financial management and our innovative approach to protecting services for our residents, business has carried on as normal. The Council is still delivering hundreds of services every day. But councils like Cornwall don’t have a magic money tree.

“Some of the funding pots Cornwall has benefitted from the most are the European Regional Development Fund, the European Social Fund, the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development and the European Marine and Fisheries Fund, which are due to come to an end next year.

“Cornwall needs urgent EU replacement funding certainty to ensure that as a region we are no worse off after Brexit.”

Mark Duddridge, Chair of the Cornwall & Isles of Scilly Local Enterprise Partnership, said: “This research underlines the need for an ambitious UK regional investment policy that recognises Less Developed Regions like ours and tackles economic inequality.

“We welcome the Prime Minister’s recent commitment to a discrete fund for our region, and we look forward to working with Government on delivering that investment.”

Read the full CPMR report, UK allocation for Cohesion Policy for 2021-2027.

 

Story posted on 15 October 2019

Categories: Cornwall

Good news for Cornwall’s railways as number of journeys soar

Tue, 10/15/2019 - 15:07

Cornwall Council’s ground-breaking plans to improve bus and rail services in Cornwall and encourage more people to use public transport are already producing positive results – with more people now choosing to jump onto the bus or train and leave their cars at home.
More people have been recorded travelling on Cornwall’s trains to St Ives this summer than any other year. Following the opening of the St Erth Park and Ride in June, 406,000 journeys have been made on the St Ives Bay Line, nearly 89,000 more than last year, an increase of 28%.
And it’s not just the branch line seeing an upsurge. The mainline has seen a 21% increase in recorded local journeys since the introduction of additional services in May 2019.
Cornwall Council is committed to creating ‘One Public Transport System for Cornwall’ (OPTSfC) to improve the standard of public transport in the county and attract more people out of their cars.
The Council’s Climate Emergency announcement places further importance on the need to encourage more people to switch from their cars to using public transport to travel to work and for leisure activities.
Over the past four years the authority has delivered significant customer focused improvements to bus and rail services under Cornwall’s Devolution Deal programme with the support of Growth Deal funding.
The recent investments in the new multi-modal hub at St Erth and the additional signalling on the mainline to allow more trains to run are already benefitting residents and visitors.
As well as the welcome increase in rail journeys, the Council’s investment in bus services has led to a 5% increase in bus patronage since last year and the highest satisfaction rating it has ever received from bus users - 90%, proving that the improvements are starting to make a positive difference to customers and changing behaviour.
From December 2019, further rail timetable changes will mean that trains run on much more standard patterns making it easier to connect to buses and know when your train is coming. This integration will significantly improve the public transport connectivity of Cornwall.
“This welcome increase in the number of rail journeys is very good news “ said Geoff Brown, the Council’s Cabinet Member for Transport. “ We want to encourage local residents, visitors and commuters to use public transport to travel to work, and for health, education, shopping and leisure rather than using their cars. This change will help improve air quality, reduce congestion and ease parking issues across the county.
“We have been working hard through our One Public Transport Scheme for Cornwall to provide a joined up public transport system across rail, bus and ferry services to provide regular, convenient, reliable transport for residents and visitors. The increase in rail and bus journeys over the past 12 months shows that our approach is working.
“We will continue to invest in the public transport network and will work with our partners and operators to maintain this improvement”

Categories: Cornwall

Saltash house remains shut as partnership tackles anti-social behaviour

Tue, 10/15/2019 - 13:38

A house at the centre of anti-social behaviour plaguing a Saltash street remains shut after joint work by Cornwall Council’s Anti-Social Behaviour Team and Devon & Cornwall Police.

A full Premises Closure Order for 91 Grenfell Avenue was granted at Bodmin Magistrates Court last month following a number of reports of crime, anti-social behaviour and disorder at the address involving both the tenant and associates attending the property.

The order was applied for jointly by the council’s Anti-Social Behaviour Team, and Devon & Cornwall Police and Force legal.

Following the hearing, officers proceeded to the premises where the property was boarded up after the tenant had vacated.

The premises will be closed until December and will allow local residents to enjoy their homes without feeling scared and intimidated.

Helen Toms from the Council's Anti-Social Behaviour Team said: “The behaviour escalating from the address was totally unacceptable for local residents who had to endure a constant stream of visitors; many of whom were loud and disruptive as well as witness violent outbursts at the address causing many residents to fear for their safety and make changes to their lifestyle to reduce the impact from such behaviours.

“I accept that many people will have challenging times with in their lifetime, which we will work with and assist in finding an alternative lifestyle for them but to change they must make a commitment to change themselves guided by the many support services in the community.

“If this support and guidance is ignored we will act accordingly and proportionately in dealing with their behaviour to give confidence to the community by actively supporting those affected. ‘

Inspector Rupert Engley of Saltash police added: “I am delighted at the court’s decision to issue a full closure order on these premises. This legislation is not used lightly, and the case was only taken to court due to compelling evidence of drug misuse and anti-social behaviour linked to the address. Class A drug supply and use will always be dealt with robustly by Saltash police.

“The issue of this full closure order reflects the outstanding partnership work that has taken place between the police, Cornwall Council and local residents. Grenfell Avenue and the surrounding area are a lot safer now this property has been closed.

“We will continue to target drug dealers and premises involved in drug misuse, and work with our community to make Saltash a safer place for all.”

Residents are encouraged to report anti-social behaviour to the police by using the 101 number or by emailing 101@dc.police.uk, Cornwall Council on 0300 1234 232 or by calling CrimeStoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111

 

 

Categories: Cornwall

Cornish teenager appeals for more people to think about adoption

Tue, 10/15/2019 - 12:06

A teenager from Cornwall is calling on anyone thinking about adopting, to come forward at the start of National Adoption Week. Jasmine was adopted when she was just three years old and she has been sharing her story, to try and encourage other people to make a difference to a young person in the county.

The Fostering and Adoption service, part of Together for Families at Cornwall Council, currently has 27 children looking for a permanent home. They are a range of ages and some are in sibling groups; Figures have shown that sibling groups wait longer than single children to be placed with a forever family.

Jasmine who has spent more than 10 years with a loving family, has spoken of the relief at being adopted and the questions it raised: “I was quite young, so I don’t remember too much about my birth family, but I do know there were some neglect issues, so I had to go into care. 

“I was moved into foster home, where I stayed with a family with a couple and their children and I became very close to them, very quickly. I was then adopted when I turned three, and I was lucky because my mum and dad also adopted my brother.”

Jasmine says the questions are still there, but she knows she has lots of support at home: “The family I have now are really loving and caring; it’s a huge family environment and we do simple things like have a Sunday roast. My aunt, my Nan and my cousins all live nearby, so there is always some you can talk to.”

Jasmine says she still has worries, but the family support with them: “When you are in care, you don’t know how long something is going to last, so you put everything into that moment.

“As I’ve been removed from my birth family and then the foster family, there were still worries that when I was adopted it wasn’t real. It’s only for a short time, even now that I’m older, I still have lots of what if questions in my mind; what if I wasn’t adopted, what if I wasn’t removed from my family or what if I was only brought here for a short time?

“That is really hard to deal with in your brain; as an adoptee I don’t always let myself trust situations or things and I don’t put my full effort into things because I don’t know how long they will last. 

“But now, I couldn’t of wished for anything more – My family are amazing, yes all families have their struggles, but there is a special bond and there is so much support available for people in my position.

Jasmine concluded by saying that it takes a lot of love to adopt someone, but it’s a chance to make a real difference: “I would say that anyone thinking about adopting needs to love the young person unconditionally, it won’t be easy because they will have issues and they may have more struggles than a normal teenager and you just need to be aware of that.”

Cllr Sally Hawken, Cabinet Member for Children & Wellbeing, Cornwall Council said, “There are many children who are waiting to be adopted but some are harder to find a loving home for than others. We do our best to keep sibling groups together because this is what they want, but this can make it very difficult to find the right adoptive family for them. While we need forever parents for all of our children who are waiting, we really would love to hear from people who feel they can offer a home to brothers and sisters to help them all thrive and experience a loving childhood.”

All Agencies want potential adopters to know that:

  • There are children who are waiting to be adopted now;
  • The adoption process will prepare you for becoming an adopter within as little as six months;
  • Anyone over 21 can adopt and there is no upper age limit;
  • Single people can adopt;
  • We welcome applications from LGBTQ and intersex people;
  • Adopters can be of any religion or none;
  • Many adopters have disabilities;
  • Adopters will be fully trained before the child is placed;
  • Adopters are supported throughout the process and beyond the adoption order.

During National Adoption Week there are a number of information events being held across the South West to inform and discuss the process of becoming an adopter and the vulnerable children who are currently waiting.

Categories: Cornwall

Cornwall Council supports The Eden Project’s drive towards clean energy

Tue, 10/15/2019 - 11:53

Cornwall Council has stepped in as a key investor in a pioneering geothermal heat and power project at the Eden Project.

After a ten-year campaign to bring the clean, green technology to Cornwall, the project and their partners, EGS Energy Limited, said that the funding will enable them to start drilling their first well on Eden’s site next summer.


A total of £16.8 million has been secured from a mixture of public and private sources. Cornwall’s final round of EU funding, the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), has contributed £9.9m. Cornwall Council has put in £1.4m. Institutional investors have contributed the remaining £5.5m.


Cornwall Council cabinet portfolio holder for culture, planning and economy Bob Egerton said: “By providing strong support and investing in alternative forms of renewable energy, we are leading the way in making the most of Cornwall’s unique assets to benefit our residents and businesses as we work together to tackle the climate emergency.


“Geothermal energy promotes Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly as a ‘clean growth’ region and shows that our approach to the Government’s Industrial Strategy for Cornwall is shaped around the transition to an economy that is powered by clean energy. I hope that this focus on clean energy will expand to the wider south west and to the UK as a whole. This step change will be absolutely necessary if we are to meet our ambitions for tackling the climate emergency both locally and nationally.”


Cornwall Council cabinet portfolio holder for climate change and neighbourhoods Edwina Hannaford said: "Cornwall is the first in the UK to explore the potential to power our economy from deep geothermal energy, the hot rocks and springs lying deep under Cornwall.
"Unlike other renewable sources where energy is dependent on the wind or the sun, deep geothermal offers a stable consistent and secure source of energy.


"All of this was made possible through our first devolution deal with Government. We want to build on this through our New Frontiers plan.


"If we can find a way to exploit geothermal power successfully, these hot rocks have the potential to provide Cornwall with a rich source of strategic minerals and renewable energy, as well as significant benefits to the local economy from jobs, research and investment.


"By supporting one-off exploration projects, this exploration for geothermal power at the Eden Project is the next step towards testing the technology we need to help us to exploit geothermal power more widely across Cornwall".

Eden Co-founder Sir Tim Smit said today that securing funds and thereby the chance to spark an energy revolution amounts to the biggest leap forward for Eden since it opened in a former clay quarry near St Austell in 2001.


Sir Tim said: “Since we began, Eden has had a dream that the world should be powered by renewable energy. The sun can provide massive solar power and the wind has been harnessed by humankind for thousands of years but because both are intermittent and battery technology cannot yet store all we need there is a gap.


“We believe the answer lies beneath our feet in the heat underground that can be accessed by drilling technology that pumps water towards the centre of the earth and brings it back up superheated to provide us with heat and electricity.


“The missing piece of the jigsaw in a 24/7 clean renewable energy future is this baseload. Now we have the green light and the funding to start drilling we are determined to make this technology work. And we want to work with others all over the world - sharing knowledge and encouraging the change as fast as is humanly possible.”


The funding will pay for the first phase of the project - drilling one well, a research programme and a heat main, to prove the extent of the resource 4.5km down in the granite that lies beneath the Eden site.


This first well will initially supply a district heating system for Eden’s Biomes, offices and greenhouses. It will pave the way for the second phase - another 4.5km well and an electricity plant.


Completing the second phase will mean that Eden will be generating sufficient renewable energy to become carbon positive by 2023 as well as aiming to be able to provide heat and power for the local area.


To deliver the plan, a new company, Eden Geothermal Limited (EGL) has been formed. The EGL shareholders are:

 

  • •Eden Project Limited, the world-renowned educational charity and visitor attraction.
  • •EGS Energy Limited, a leading geothermal development and consultancy group with experience on commercial scale projects in Cornwall and around the world.
  • BESTEC (UK) Limited, which is affiliated with BESTEC GmbH, the specialist geothermal developer and drilling advisor.

The EGS Energy team have significant experience and expertise, having been part of the Hot Dry Rocks geothermal programme in Cornwall in the 1980s, the follow-on EU programme in Soultz-sous-Forêts, France and the subsequent commercial power generating projects in Landau and Insheim, Germany, among others worldwide. The University of Exeter will be providing academic and research services to the project.


Sir Tim paid tribute to the tenacity of the EGS Energy team and his own colleagues within Eden for enabling drilling to start and expressed huge thanks to the council, the EU and the institutional investors.


He said: “Geothermal will be a game changer for Eden, Cornwall and the UK. The heat will be used for the Biomes, to grow food, as well as helping support the development of our long-awaited hotel.


“Once up and running, our plant will provide more than enough renewable electricity and heat for the whole site, as well as for the local area. We will be drilling for good energy rather than bad.”


Glenn Caplin, Chief Executive of the Cornwall & Isles of Scilly Local Enterprise Partnership, said: “This is another huge step forward in the drive to create a geothermal industry in Cornwall, using our natural assets to decarbonise our economy and create high value jobs. Renewable energy is both an environmental and an economic opportunity for Cornwall, which is why clean growth is at the heart of our emerging Local Industrial Strategy.”


Guy Macpherson-Grant, Managing Director of EGS Energy, said: “It is exciting that this geothermal development is under way. The geology in the county is particularly well-suited for cost-efficient heat and power generation, and St Austell benefits from particularly high heat flows.”


Augusta Grand, Director of Eden Geothermal Limited, who has led Eden’s geothermal project for the last seven years, said: “It is great that we’re now getting going on this project. Geothermal has huge potential to provide baseload heat and power on a very small surface footprint.


“We look forward to being able to demonstrate the advantages of the technology to Eden’s one million visitors a year and encourage greater investment.”


Richard Day, non-executive chairman of Eden Geothermal Limited, said: “The support we have received from all our stakeholders will allow us to prove the resource in this part of Cornwall. Alongside the other geothermal project in Cornwall at United Downs, we are looking to stimulate a whole new Green Tech industrial cluster in Cornwall, on the back of the centuries of mining heritage in the county.”


The Rt Hon Jake Berry MP, Coastal Communities and Local Growth Minister, said: “The Eden Project is not only a must-see tourist attraction bringing visitors from all corners of the globe to Cornwall, but also an innovator at the very forefront of renewable energy development.


“Thanks to £9.9 million of Government funding, work can begin immediately on this exciting project which will unlock the rich geothermal resource beneath the site and allow the full untapped potential of renewable energy sources to be fully utilised.


“This will be essential in tackling climate change, exploring alternative energy sources and ensuring Cornwall can take full advantage of all the economic opportunities that lie ahead.”


Steve Double, MP for St Austell and Newquay, said: “Cornwall is a literal hotbed for geothermal energy and has for some time been a leader in clean and sustainable energy production. I have long championed the Eden Project’s efforts to realise the potential of this renewable energy.


“Cornwall’s unique geology enables geothermal energy to make a significant contribution to maintaining the Duchy’s clean energy credentials. It is great news that we have been able to secure funding for this scheme that fits well with the Eden Project's vision. I’d like to thank everyone who has been involved locally in getting us to this position.”


Dr Robin Shail, Senior Lecturer in Geology at the University of Exeter, said: “Cornwall is rapidly re-establishing itself as the UK centre for deep geothermal energy and we’re delighted to be involved in this major project in which we will contribute towards achieving research objectives and training of the next generation of scientists and engineers to work in this emerging sector.”


A video of Sir Tim Smit talking about Eden’s geothermal plans is available at https://youtu.be/CrzGStYHh08.

Categories: Cornwall

Next milestone met as contractor appointed to deliver the new St Austell to A30 link road

Mon, 10/14/2019 - 17:08

A major Council project to build a new 3.9 mile road linking St Austell to the A30, to better connect communities in and around St Austell to the rest of Cornwall and the UK, has moved another step forward.

Alun Griffiths (Contractors) Ltd has been appointed to carry out the detailed design and construction of the road after successfully tendering for the contract.

The new road will link the A391 at Carluddon with the A30 at Victoria, supporting employment, housing and regeneration in the area.

Cornwall Council's Cabinet portfolio holder for transport, Geoff Brown, said: “This in an important milestone. The new road will boost business, inward investment and job growth as well as improving access to Cornwall Airport Newquay.

"This is a vital scheme which will boost economic growth in the mid Cornwall corridor between Newquay and St Austell.”

The Government has said that, in principle, it’s prepared to contribute £79m to the scheme after a strong funding bid from Cornwall Council to the Department for Transport (DfT).  We’ll now be submitting the final business case to the DfT for release of the funding.  The remaining £6m of funding for the new road is coming from Cornwall Council.

The new road will run from the Singlerose Roundabout south of Stenalees, bypassing to the west of Roche to link to the A30 via the Victoria junction.

The project will include significant landscaping to create a green corridor which will include the planting trees, shrubs, verges and species rich grassland to support wildlife habitats and insects. 

When the new road is complete, there will be new routes for walking, cycling and horse riding with 5 ½ miles of new paths to give greater opportunities for leisure and recreation.

Additional measures to improve the environment and reduce traffic speeds for residents through Roche, Bugle, Stenalees and along the B3274 Bodmin Road, will also form part of the project.

Cornwall Council member for Bugle Sally-Anne Saunders said: “The communities will be keen to see the community improvements that will come at the end of the build of the new road.   Those improvements will make a great difference to the people I represent in Bugle and Stenalees."

Cornwall Council member for Roche John Wood said: “We’ve been talking to our local communities all the way through to this latest milestone and we’ll continue to keep them involved.  The new road will take heavy traffic and big lorries away from the roads through our villages so our residents will have their villages back.”

Alun Griffiths (Contractors) Ltd, Executive Director Martyn Evans said: “We are delighted to be appointed as the main contractor for this critical new link in the mid Cornwall corridor. We have considerable experience in delivering sustainable infrastructure projects, identifying all opportunities to enhance social, economic and environmental aspects. We are acutely aware of the environmental sensitivities surrounding the scheme and will work in collaboration with all relevant stakeholders to make it a success.”

“The Eden Project, through the National Wildflower Centre, has been working with Cornwall Council and partners to change the developmental ethos of road construction to deliver verifiable ecological gain over the longer term, including the creation of wildflower corridors and areas of new habitats. We hope that many of the recommendations made within this scheme will become commonplace in any future road building projects.”

MP for Newquay and St Austell, Steve Double said: “I’m delighted that the Government has said that, in principle, it’s prepared to contribute £79m to the scheme. People in the St Austell area have been crying out for a better link to the A30 for as long as I can remember.

“It’s great to see that this road will now be built that will not only improve connection to St Austell but also ease traffic through Bugle, Roche and Stenalees”

Depending on confirmation of government funding, construction could start in spring 2020, with the new road opening in 2022.

Posted on 14 October

Categories: Cornwall

Date Confirmed for Cornwall Tour of Britain Stage in 2020

Mon, 10/14/2019 - 11:19

Some of the world’s best cyclists will be gracing the streets of Cornwall when the first stage of the Tour of Britain 2020 sets off from Penzance on Sunday, September 6 next year.

The date of the stage has now been confirmed by the tour’s organisers, and will see riders travelling on a 170km route through the Cornish countryside, ending in Bodmin.

The stage will also visit St Just, St Ives, Hayle, Camborne, Pool, Redruth, Falmouth, Penryn, Truro, Newquay, St Austell and the Eden Project (subject to final Tour of Britain approval in November).

The world-class sporting event is coming to Cornwall for the first time after a successful bid by Cornwall Council.

There will be a community launch day in November to promote the delivery of the event and to showcase the community engagement programme surrounding the event.

The race will give a massive boost to Cornwall’s economy. Independent economic reports estimate that the race will generate over £3million of extra spending within Cornwall over the stage, and it is hoped that around 180,000 people will line the roads of Cornwall to watch.

The Tour of Britain stage will be the biggest ever sporting event to be hosted in Cornwall. The Tour of Britain is British Cycling’s premier road cycling event and the most prestigious race in Britain, and is shown live on ITV4 and Eurosport as well as being broadcast in 190 countries worldwide.

A total of 120 riders take part in the Tour of Britain and by hosting the first stage of the race in 2020, it will give opportunity for the public in Cornwall to see the world’s best cyclists in action.

The Tour of Britain stage in Cornwall will also present an opportunity for national and local businesses to sponsor the event.

Councillor Bob Egerton, portfolio holder for planning and economy at Cornwall Council, said:  “We are honoured and excited that Cornwall is hosting the first stage of Britain’s biggest cycling event on 6th September 2020.

“It will bring visitors into the Duchy, not only along the stage route, but across the rest of the Duchy and it will also help to enhance our profile both at home and abroad.

“We will also work to ensure we create a long term legacy from the event by raising the profile of cycling in Cornwall and motivating more people to cycle and lead healthier and active lives.”

Mick Bennett, Tour of Britain Race Director, said:  “We are delighted announce the date of Cornwall hosting the Grand Depart 2020 stage. We are looking forward to bringing the race to Cornwall for the first time on Sunday 6th September 2020.

“Working with Cornwall Council, British Cycling, the UCI and partners we look forward to making Cornwall the destination to be next September to see the world’s best cyclists in action.”

Categories: Cornwall

Magistrates warn a Cornish mum to make sure her children attend school

Fri, 10/11/2019 - 17:40

The mother of two pupils from a school in Redruth has been given a 6 month Community Order, with electronic tagging, after pleading guilty for failing to ensure that her children attended school on a regular basis.

The parent was placed under Curfew from 8pm to 7am, 7 days a week, for a period of six weeks. The Order also directs the parent to undertake a Children and Families Rehabilitation Programme.

Magistrates at Truro were told that the two children had missed 79 sessions in the last academic year. It was the second time that the woman had appeared in court for unauthorised absences. She was fined £530 in January 2018.

The Chairman warned the mother that she could face a prison sentence if she appeared before the court again.

Education Welfare Officer at Cornwall Council, Rachel Jarman, said:  “We work closely with schools, parents and pupils to ensure that children and young people receive their full educational entitlement.

"This may involve arranging home and school visits to discuss the situation.  Prosecution is a last resort when everything else has failed. Where parents are finally taken to court for school attendance offences they do run the risk of being fined or sent to prison.”

For more information on school absence please visit our school pages.

Categories: Cornwall

Cornwall’s Port Health team oversees successful Falmouth Oyster Festival

Fri, 10/11/2019 - 13:40

With the Falmouth Oyster Festival running for its 23rd year this weekend, Cornwall Council’s Port Health team has been working to ensure that residents, visitors and businesses enjoy a successful event.

The annual festivities held in Events Square in Falmouth mark the start of the oyster dredging season which runs from October to March each year.

It celebrates the native Fal Oyster and diversity of Cornish seafood, with four days of feasting, cooking demos, live music, food and craft stalls from now until Sunday, October 13.

Daily cookery demonstrations are held by top chefs and food experts from Cornwall’s hotels and restaurants, inspiring visitors to try their hand at unusual and exciting seafood combinations and indulge in the tastes of native oysters, wines, ales and local produce.

This burgeoning industry is overseen by the Cornwall Council’s Port Health Team, a small group of officers who work with organisers to sample the raw shellfish products, oversee the regulation of depuration plants and industry testing of the final product.

Like all shellfish oysters require proper preparation to ensure that they are safe to eat. Most shellfish from Cornish waters will undergo a form of processing called depuration. This is where the shellfish sit in a tank of clean water for 48-72 hours to filter clean water, so that they are presented to consumers in the safest possible condition.

The team look for cleanliness of the stalls but also at risk of cross contamination, temperature control, hand washing, access to water and personal hygiene of staff.The Falmouth-based Port Health team also carry out food hygiene inspections of some of the food business operators attending the festival.

For over a century there has been oyster dredging in the Carrick Roads and surrounding rivers. Many of the oyster boats, known as Falmouth Working Boats were built at boatyards around the Fal.

Governed by ancient laws that were put in place to protect the natural ecology of the riverbeds and oyster stocks, oystermen fishing in the Port of Truro Oyster Fishery are prohibited from using engines. Instead, sail power and hand-pulled dredges must be used.

Councillor Rob Nolan, Cornwall’s Cabinet Member for environment and public protection, said: “A great deal of work goes on behind the scenes to get the Falmouth Oyster Festival up and running each year so that thousands of locals and visitors can enjoy these Cornish delights.

“I want to pay tribute to our Port Health team for ensuring everyone enjoys this top class, Cornish event celebrating our proud and growing shellfish industry.”

Businesses can find more information on food markets and festivals to ensure they are fully compliant with rules surrounding the service of food outside of permanent structures.

Safer Food Better Business packs can be purchased from Cornwall Council.

Posted 11 October, 2019

Categories: Cornwall

Two of Cornwall’s Councillors shortlisted to win an LGiU award

Fri, 10/11/2019 - 10:27

The hard work and achievements of two of Cornwall’s Councillors has been recognised by the Local Government information Unit (LGiU) following their nominations for an LGiU Councillor Achievement Award.

Both Cllr Rob Rotchell, Cornwall Council portfolio holder for adults and Cllr James Mustoe, Ward Member for Mevagissey have been shortlisted for awards, Rob for the Innovation and Service Transformation award and James for the Community Champion award.

Cllr Julian German, Leader of Cornwall Council said: “The LGiU received nearly 250 nominations so getting this far is something that both Rob and James, and Cornwall as a whole can be proud of.

“It is only fair that the hard work of both of these councillors is recognised, Rob for his passion and dedication for his portfolio area, where he has led the way in galvanising and transforming the whole health and care system as the Council continues to face huge challenges to deliver adult care services with limited and stretched resources.”

Cllr German added:  Cllr Mustoe has also demonstrated passion in his role, stepping up to represent his community by his tireless campaigning for local services, most recently being a big part of a campaign which totally turned around the future of a vital Mevagissey GP surgery.”

The awards take place every year and are an opportunity to shine a light on the hard work of councillors across the UK. There are a number of categories for which individuals can be recognised, including:

  • Community Champion
  • Finance and economic development
  • Leader of the year
  • Environment and sustainability pioneer
  • Innovation and service transformation
  • Young councillor of the year
  • Lifetime achievement award

The winner in each category will be chosen by a judging panel comprised of senior councillors and officers as well as external stakeholders. The winners will be announced at the awards event on 5 November.

You can find out more information on the LGiU website 

Posted on 11 October

Categories: Cornwall

Statement on Redruth Library

Thu, 10/10/2019 - 17:09

We are committed to preserving the current Redruth Library building in Clinton Road and we have never had plans to demolish this historic building.

As part of our devolution programme Redruth Town Council now runs the town’s library service in the current Redruth Library building in Clinton Road on a short term lease.

Early next year the library service is being relocated to the Cornwall Centre (former Cornish Studies Library) in Alma Place, Redruth, a building owned by the Town Council. 

The Clinton Road library building will revert to Cornwall Council from next April and as the site will not be needed for our services we are exploring the option to sell the building.

In order to protect the building once sold, we submitted a pre planning application enquiry asking Cornwall Council to consider “refurbishment and conversion to provide residential dwellings with parking”.

Our additional questions were to clarify that demolition of the building would not be permitted because the building is in a Conservation Area.

However, the wording of this question in our pre planning application report has led to misunderstanding for which we apologise.

We have now withdrawn the pre planning application enquiry pending a replacement enquiry which will clearly show our commitment to preserving this historic building.

Posted 10 October, 2019

Categories: Cornwall

Cornwall leads the way in unlocking the power of community, Future of Localism report says

Thu, 10/10/2019 - 13:26

“Cornwall has one of the most advanced localism agendas in the country” – that’s according to a recent study that looked at how four very different areas in the UK are working to strengthen community power.

The year-long study, published by Locality, examined how Cornwall, Stevenage, Southwark and Wigan are devolving power and working with communities and parish and town councils as equal partners in decision-making.

It also outlined the barriers in place at a local level that need to be addressed, and showcased how resident-led partnerships and community organisations are working with local authorities to drive change in their areas.

The report, named ‘Power Partnerships’, stated: “Localism in Cornwall is advanced. Over 100 communities across Cornwall have had assets devolved to local ownership, and 80% of parishes have local service agreements.

“There are also 19 Community Network Panels for parish and town councils across the country to drive local priorities and develop joint strategies, also supported by Cornwall Council’s localism team.”

Jubilee Pool, an iconic feature of the Penzance seafront for 80 years, was transferred to The Friends of Jubilee Pool in 2017

Cornwall’s ground-breaking devolution deal has resulted in many services being delivered locally and residents having more control over how money is spent.

As well as having powers devolved to Cornwall from London, Cornwall Council is also devolving influence, services and assets to local councils, community groups and other organisations within the Duchy.

Devolution's primary purpose is to encourage locally-led service delivery and increase local participation in decision making.

A growing number of assets and services have been successfully devolved to local councils and community organisations, including:

  • Devolved or transferred local management of two sea pools; two skate parks; two visitor centres; a competition level running track; 16 car parks; 17 community buildings; and over 100 parks, gardens, green spaces, play areas, allotments and sports clubs.
  • The Council has also successfully transferred more than 200 public toilets.
  • The Libraries Transformation Programme has re-invigorated library and information services, with 22 sites now being run locally with partners, increasing customer access through increased opening hours in some locations.

Councillor Edwina Hannaford at Camelford Library, which was transferred to the town council as part of Cornwall Council's devolution programme

Edwina Hannaford, Cornwall Council Cabinet member for neighbourhoods and climate change, said: “We are so proud that Cornwall has been recognised as leading the way in localism in this report.

“Cornwall Council is committed to ‘double devolution’ and devolving responsibility to communities across the county.

“We are living in a period of unprecedented political upheaval. While division seemingly characterises our national politics, investing in localism and putting neighbourhoods in the lead to shape local priories and local services can help deliver the democratic renewal we urgently need as a county.

“Communities need to be front and centre of decisions that affect them and be given the autonomy they deserve to improve their own neighbourhoods.”

Read the full report, Power Partnerships - Learning on Localism.

Story posted on 10 October 2019

Categories: Cornwall

How to stay warm and well - Cornwall’s Winter Wellbeing guide to launch in time for cold season

Tue, 10/08/2019 - 12:43

“Keep warm, save money by switching energy tariffs, and spare a thought and a little time for your neighbours, especially if they’re elderly, disabled or have a chronic illness”.  That is the message from Cornwall Council as the weather turns colder.

With the colder months just around the corner, the Council and its partners are offering a range of advice and support to residents on how to keep warm, well and safe this winter.

The Winter Wellbeing guide, published online and as a useful business card, gives information on heating, insulation, and how to save money on energy by switching companies and checking tariffs.

It also offers information on how people who can’t afford to heat their homes can get extra help.

Sally Hawken, Cornwall Council Cabinet member for children, wellbeing and public health, said: “Being able to heat a home is not just about staying warm. The Winter Wellbeing guide offers people valuable advice on other issues, such as keeping away mould which can make illness such as asthma worse, and reducing stress and improving mental wellbeing.”

In an average winter over 20,000 extra lives are lost due to winter illnesses. Combined with cold and damp homes, it is a serious public health concern.

Steve Brown, Interim Director of Wellbeing and Public Health for Cornwall Council and the Council of the Isles of Scilly, said: “Keeping warm is vital to staying healthy, particularly for those who are more vulnerable to the cold, such as the very young and older people, and those with a long-term health condition.

“One of our top priorities is to prevent illness and deaths from the cold weather.”

Since 2011-12 the service has helped 9,039 households in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly, and prevented 848 hospital admissions caused by poor health due to a lack of warmth.

Dr Tim Jones from Community Energy Plus, the Cornish energy charity which hosts Winter Wellbeing’s Freephone advice line, said: “Rising energy prices are a serious concern to many householders in Cornwall but people living in cold homes shouldn’t suffer in silence. Advice and practical help from a large network of local organisations is just a phone call away to help Cornwall’s residents to take action to enjoy warmer homes and lower energy bills this winter.”

Cornwall’s devolution deal has resulted in better services for residents, bringing funding under local control which spans a wide range of projects, including implementing schemes to tackle fuel poverty.

In the last three years the deal has delivered £11.5m investment into the Warm and Well programme, making the homes of over 1,000 vulnerable households in Cornwall more efficient to heat.

The Winter Wellbeing guides are available from mid-October as printed copies at Council One Stop Shops, GP surgeries and health centres, hospitals, Family Hubs, and Job Centres. They are also available to view online at www.cornwall.gov.uk/winterwellbeing.

You can contact the Community Energy Plus helpline on Freephone 0800 954 1956.

Posted on 8 October 2019

Categories: Cornwall

Open invite to event - working towards zero suicide in Cornwall

Mon, 10/07/2019 - 16:03

Anyone with an interest in making Cornwall suicide free is invited to attend a Towards Zero Suicide event to mark this year’s World Mental Health Awareness Day on 10 October.

The Cornwall Council Public Health team have organised the event which is open to everyone, and, whether you’re a member of a local organisation, charity or a member of the public, it’s all about working together to wipe out suicide.

It’s taking place at Falmouth’s Princess Pavillion on 10 October from 5.30pm until 8.30pm and the main focus will be around the role everyone has to play in reducing the stigma around mental health and in developing the services and interventions that will make a real difference to people’s lives.

Public Health Consultant, Dr Ruth Goldstein said: “Moving towards zero suicide in Cornwall can only be done through collaboration and meaningful engagement. Everyone is welcome at this evening event so that we can come together to recognise much of the great work that is already on-going, to update you on the progress made since our last event in September 2018, and to further develop our work.”

The event will look in more detail at:

  • How best to engage with people about mental health and suicide
  • How to create suicide safer communities
  • Self-harm in children and young people

Dr Goldstein added: “Whether you have experience as a service user, you have been bereaved by suicide, you work in mental health or are an interested citizen, we all have a role to play and we welcome your contribution.

“Cornwall has a high rate of suicides compared to other parts of the UK so its imperative that we all take action to reduce the amount of people who, for whatever reason, feel there is no other way out.”

This event and engagement with people across the region adds further to the work being undertaken by Cornwall Council and its partners which includes:

  • Support for workplaces affected by suicide
  • Toolkits for sports coaches and primary care workers to be able to recognise signs of poor mental health and support people
  • Raising awareness of suicide and mental health through the ‘Don’t flush your life away’ and ‘How are you really feeling?’ campaigns

To find out more about the event and book your place you can visit the Eventbrite page

Also on the day will be a drop in event, organised by Cornwall Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, taking place at Truro’s Lemon Quay, 10am-3pm with free activities, performances and information on the local resources available to support mental health and wellbeing.

If you need some advice or support with your mental health you can find out more on the mental health advice and support page.

Posted on 7 October

Categories: Cornwall

Cornwall Council offers a helping hand as part of National Customer Service Week

Mon, 10/07/2019 - 15:49

Collecting your bins, repairing potholes and providing street lighting is just a fraction of what we do. 

That’s the message to our residents from Cornwall Council at the start of National Customer Service Week 2019.

To emphasise just how diverse the services we offer are, we have produced a new ‘helping hand’ leaflet and webpage to help people find out just how we can help.

Among the services it promotes are:

  • A handyperson service to help older people with repairs without a big bill
  • Lifeline personal alarms to keep people safe in their homes
  • Traveline South West to help you to plan journeys by public transport
  • Homechoice to help find an affordable home to rent
  • Access to computers for free in our libraries and free beginners’ IT lessons across Cornwall

The new leaflet will be distributed across Cornwall in the next few weeks, and a new webpage detailing all of these services and more can be found at www.cornwall.gov.uk/helpinghand

Mike Eathorne Gibbons, portfolio holder for customers, said: “We are on a journey towards great customer service. We are a big organisation, with many different services, and we have a challenging budget, so it is tough.

“We answered 876,000 calls in the 2018/19 financial year, which just shows the scale of the operation.

“We introduced our customer service promise last year, which has really helped sharpen our focus.

“Now we are launching the helping hand initiative, which will make it easier for people to find the services that could make a real difference to their lives.

“We are proud of what we have achieved to improve our customer service already, and of our frontline staff who work very hard to deliver for the people of Cornwall.

“We want to celebrate their commitment and passion for excellent customer service.”

Categories: Cornwall

Council advises businesses in Cornwall to get free help with Brexit preparations

Mon, 10/07/2019 - 11:24

With under a month to prepare for a potential no-deal Brexit, Government is advising businesses in Cornwall that trade internationally to urgently assess how they will be affected and get plans in place.

The advice comes as the Brexit Business Readiness Events Roadshow gets under way with a free event in Cornwall.

Cornwall Council is encouraging businesses to sign up to the event, which takes place on Tuesday, October 15 from 8.30am to 11.30am at the St Austell Conference Centre, on St Austell Business Park.

The practical workshop will provide businesses with a personalised action plan detailing the paperwork needed to continue exporting, expected impact to supply chains, and changes to regulations and contracts.

International trade experts will explain where businesses can find tariff information, commodity codes and duty rates, and what issues business owners may need to speak to customers and employees about.

Julian German, Leader of Cornwall Council, said: “Like all local authorities up and down the country, Cornwall Council has been considering what the potential impact of leaving the European Union will have on our residents.

“We are working to try to ensure that our communities are not adversely affected, however Brexit will bring fundamental changes to the way people do business.

“If there is a no-deal Brexit on October 31, companies in Cornwall have very limited time to implement the significant changes expected.

“Many businesses are already planning for the challenges and opportunities ahead but a substantial number are not. Every company in Cornwall, even those who do not think they will be directly affected, should be undertaking no-deal preparation.”


How businesses can get help to get ready for Brexit

Locally, businesses can get guidance from the Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Growth Hub, Cornwall Council’s Business Regulatory Support Hub, and business representative organisations. Find out more at cornwall.gov.uk/Brexit

‘Help for Brexit’ is funded by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy’s £10m Brexit Readiness Fund.

Workshop

Register for the Get Ready for Brexit event.

Places are limited and offered on a first come, first serve basis. Registration is required.

Webinars

Businesses can also watch 45-minute webinars about exporting goods and services after Brexit. These will take place on Tuesday, October 8 at 2pm and 3pm.

Register for webinars.

Categories: Cornwall

St Petrocs named as Cornwall Council Chairman's charity of the year

Fri, 10/04/2019 - 14:58

The Chairman of Cornwall Council has announced St Petrocs as her chosen charity for the year.

St Petrocs is committed to working to end street homelessness in Cornwall by providing accommodation, support, advice, training and resettlement services to single homeless people.

Founded 32 years ago, it now has more than 40 members of staff providing two resource centres, outreach and residential services across the whole of Cornwall.

Councillor Hilary Frank, Chairman of Cornwall Council, announced her decision to choose St Petrocs at the recent meeting of Ful Council at Lys Kernow.

She explained to councillors that the work being done by the charity was vital.

Cllr Frank said: “All of us are born into circumstances beyond our choosing, and it is these background stories that stay with us and shape the rest of our lives. But they don’t have to dictate our lives.

“The power and freedom we have to shape our future depends on the support we can call on from those around us. For anyone facing homelessness, for whatever reason, there should be the care and support they need to help them. It is our moral duty that we get this right for the people of Cornwall.”

Steve Ellis of St Petrocs with Cllr Hilary Frank

Steve Ellis, Chief Executive of St Petrocs, said: "It is wonderful to have been chosen as the Chairman's charity, it is something we were not expecting, and is a real boost for us.

"Meeting councillors today has been hugely valuable, they have been so supportive and so interested in the work we do.

"Our stated aim is to end homelessness in Cornwall, and that is achievable, especially with the support we are lucky to receive from Cornwall Council and the wider community.

"Contrary to the rest of the UK, the number of homeless people in Cornwall is falling, and this wonderful gesture from Hilary and other councillors will help us to continue our work.”

 

Posted on October 04, 2019

Categories: Cornwall

The largest artificial caving system in the South West opens in St Austell

Fri, 10/04/2019 - 14:24

One of the largest artificial caving systems in the South West has been created in Cornwall.  The unit has been built at the Porthpean Outdoor Education Centre, St Austell which is run by Cornwall Outdoors.

The bespoke system of tunnels is over 80ms long and offers users a realistic and exciting journey through a simulated underground environment in a safe and controlled way.  The realistic cave passageways include stalactites, stalagmites, fossils and a number of chambers, where small groups can gather to discuss which direction to take next. 

Head of Cornwall Outdoors, Andy Barclay, said: “Caving requires skilful manoeuvring of your body which will strengthen your core and upper body, as well as mentally stimulating your brain cells. It’s a great way to build team work and the young people that have already tried it out, have loved it.”

Cornwall Outdoors has four outdoor education facilities across Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly and is part of Cornwall Council’s Together for Families. There are 3 residential centres at Carnyorth, Delaware and Porthpean as well as a campsite set up each summer on St Mary’s, Isles of Scilly.

Established in 1947 as a means to reunite and re-energise the young people of Europe after the Second World War, Cornwall Outdoors began with a set of tents in a field near Restormel Castle in mid Cornwall. The International Youth Camp, as it was then, moved to its current site at Porthpean in 1949 and has been working there with young people ever since.  Their belief remains the same; that outdoor activities and outdoor education offer massive benefits – physical and mental - to those who take part so we simply say, “Get out there , have fun, get better!”

Andy continued: “The caving system is a great addition to our facilities at Porthpean, where visitors can try our high ropes course, climbing walls, mountain biking, archery and of course our water-based activities including kayaking, coasteering and stand up paddleboards. We aim to build confidence and resilience in young people and adults, and challenge them to try new things. 

“I’ll be the first to admit that the caving unit is not for everyone, but the number of people who overcome their fears and give it a go is phenomenal.”

To celebrate the launch of the caving unit an open evening is being held at Porthpean, where members of the public can come and experience the caving unit.  The event, which is being held on Halloween, is open from 5.30 until 9 and tickets are just £10.

Categories: Cornwall

Have your say on Langarth Garden Village

Thu, 10/03/2019 - 17:04

 

Residents are invited to come and have their say at a series of listening events being held in and around the location of the new Langarth Garden Village this October.

We want the masterplanning of Langarth Garden Village to be truly community led.  These events are an early opportunity for those living in the villages in and around the proposed Garden Village site to come and talk to the masterplanning team.  We want to hear your ideas, aspirations and concerns and for you to ask any questions you may have. 

This is the start of a two way process which will bring the local community into the centre of the place-making process.

The first event is being held at St Agnes on Wednesday, 09 October, with further events taking place at Highertown, Threemilestone, Chacewater and Shortlanesend. All the events will run from 2pm to 7pm so that as many people as possible have the opportunity to attend. 

  • 09 October - St Agnes, Miners and Mechanics
  • 10 October - Highertown All Saints Church
  • 11 October - Threemilestone Community Centre
  • 18 October - Chacewater Village Hall
  • 25 October - Shortlanesend Village Hall

“The next few months are going to be a very important time for local residents as the masterplan is developed” said Bob Egerton, Cornwall Council’s Cabinet portfolio holder for culture, planning and economy. 

“Hundreds of people visited the Truro Placeshaping stand at last month’s Truro Day to find out more about the plans for Langarth Garden Village and to share their views and aspirations. Their comments have been taken on board by the team and are being used to help shape the emerging masterplan.

“We want Langarth Garden Village to be a vibrant and distinctive community where people want to live, work and thrive. To help us achieve this we need as many people as possible living in communities in and around Langarth to have their say on how they want this scheme to evolve. Please come along to one of these community events and have your say. “

Cornwall Council member for Threemilestone and Gloweth Dulcie Tudor.  “There are as yet many unknowns about what is going to be developed at Langarth. But what’s clear is whatever happens it is going to have a significant impact on the lives of people in my Division of Threemilestone and Gloweth.

That is why it is vitally important local residents have a voice in the planning decision process. So I strongly urge people to take part in these consultations. Let the Planners know your views then, armed with this information, I can effectively lobby on your behalf. “

Further information about the scheme and future engagement events are available on the Langarth Garden Village  pages on the Cornwall Council website. 

 

Story posted 03 October 2019 

Categories: Cornwall

153 children currently waiting for adoptive parents in the South West

Thu, 10/03/2019 - 12:49

Adoption Agencies across the South West are working together in National Adoption Week (14-20th October) to encourage people thinking about adoption to come forward. This appeal comes as numbers of adopters drop to an all-time low and the number of children waiting to be adopted rises to over 150.

Regional Adoption Agencies, Adopt South West, Aspire Adoption, Cornwall Council, the Council for the Isles of Scilly and Families for Children are all looking for adopters who would consider adopting siblings. If adoptive families for these children cannot be found soon then it is possible they will need to be separated in order to find them a forever family.

Latest figures published to mark National Adoption Week, show that 45% of the children in the South West waiting for adoptive families are brothers and sisters in groups of 2 or more. Figures from the National Adoption Information Service show that sibling groups wait 4 times longer than single children to be placed with their forever family.

Jim Fitton, Head of Operations at Families for Children says, “The majority of people adopting for the first time choose to take a single child into their family rather than considering siblings. Also, it is often in the best interests of the children that a sibling group finds a family together rather than experience further trauma by being separated. This presents an extra challenge for social workers and these factors account for the high proportion of siblings in our region waiting for an adoptive family.”

The Adoption Agencies report that across the region there seems to be a shortage of potential adopters coming forward for single children let alone siblings. They are all at a loss as to why.

A factor may be that Agencies are still feeling the effects of the situation 2 years ago where there were very few children with Adoption Orders but an abundance of adopters waiting for children – but this is now not the case. They want to dispel some of the myths about who can and can’t adopt and urge people to come forward and have a conversation.

Kath Drescher, Adopt South West Service Manager says, “We’re asking anyone who may be considering adoption to think about whether they could parent siblings. There’s no denying that having more than one child comes with challenges but it also has advantages and brings great rewards. And we will be there to support you all the way.”

Cllr Sally Hawken, Cabinet Member for Children and Wellbeing, Cornwall Council said, “There are many children who are waiting to be adopted but some are harder to find a loving home for than others. We do our best to keep sibling groups together because this is what they want, but this can make it very difficult to find the right adoptive family for them. While we need forever parents for all of our children who are waiting, we really would love to hear from people who feel they can offer a home to brothers and sisters to help them all thrive and experience a loving childhood.”

All Agencies want potential adopters to know that:

  • There are children who are waiting to be adopted now;
  • The adoption process will prepare you for becoming an adopter within as little as six months;
  • Anyone over 21 can adopt and there is no upper age limit;
  • Single people can adopt;
  • We welcome applications from LGBTQ and intersex people;
  • Adopters can be of any religion or none;
  • Many adopters have disabilities;
  • Adopters will be fully trained before the child is placed;
  • Adopters are supported throughout the process and beyond the adoption order.

During National Adoption Week there are a number of information events being held across the South West to inform and discuss the process of becoming an adopter and the vulnerable children who are currently waiting.

 

Categories: Cornwall

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