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News from Dorset councils
Updated: 4 hours 18 min ago

Pedestrianisation works take place in Weymouth town centre

10 hours 49 min ago
Two streets in Weymouth will be made free of traffic to make it easier for pedestrians

Weymouth and Portland Borough Council and Dorset County Council have partnered up with support from Weymouth BID to install barriers in St Mary Street and St Thomas Street.

Both streets are subject to a Traffic Control Order (TRO) which restricts vehicles from entering. Only residents, taxis and commercial vehicles can use the roads between 5.30pm and 10.30am.

Pictured left to right: Cllr Jeff Cant, Cllr Colin Huckle and Helen Toft from Weymouth BID

A number of road users have been witnessed using the streets and potentially putting people at risk.

Traffic bollards have been installed in St Mary Street opposite the King Statue and at the junction of Bond Street opposite Pandora. A gate will be reinstalled in St Thomas Street at the junction with School Street. They will be opened and closed each day to allow unrestricted traffic through.

Partnership working to boost local businesses

Cllr Jeff Cant, Leader of Weymouth and Portland Borough Council, said:

“We want to make Weymouth a better place for people to spend time and access local businesses. Having bollards in place will stop the streets being used as rat runs and vastly improve the area for people on foot. This will be good for pedestrians and good for businesses.

“This is just the start. We will be looking at further options and working with our partners at Dorset County Council and Weymouth BID to look at further pedestrianisation.”

Pedestrian Zone – Weymouth

Cllr Colin Huckle, Briefholder for Transport and Infrastructure at Weymouth and Portland Borough Council, said:

“Our aim is to reduce the amount of traffic in the centre of town. Visitors and residents need to be able to move about freely and safely. We will be looking at other roads and aiming to stop people from using them as rat runs.”

Nigel Reed, Weymouth BID Manager, said: “The return of the barriers is welcomed by the BID and supported by town centres businesses. The BID is working with WPBC and DCC on this project to help improve the pedestrian environment in the town.”

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Categories: Dorset

Our parks and gardens in Weymouth and Portland are among the best in Britain

Wed, 07/19/2017 - 16:09

Greenhill Gardens and Sandsfoot Gardens in Weymouth and Easton Gardens in Portland are among the very best in the UK – and that’s official.

The gardens today all received a prestigious Green Flag Award from environmental charity Keep Britain Tidy. The award recognises and rewards the best parks and green spaces across the country. A Green Flag flying overhead is a sign to the public that the space boasts the highest possible standards, is beautifully maintained and has excellent facilities.

Greenhill Gardens has received a Green Flag Award for the last 11 years, Easton Gardens for the last 10 years and Sandsfoot Gardens for the last six years.

Cllr Kate Wheller, Weymouth & Portland Borough Council’s Briefholder for Community Facilities, said: “We are delighted to receive Green Flag Awards for three of our gardens. Weymouth and Portland has some of the best parks and gardens in the country and I am pleased that this has been recognised officially. 

“The green flag awards recognise the hard work and achievements of both the council’s parks department and the all the volunteers and Friends groups. 

“We are currently running a competition to encourage people to get out and enjoy their local park or garden. All you have to do is go to one of the borough’s green spaces, take a photograph and post it using the hashtag #loveweyportparks and you could win £100.

 “I hope the news that we have won green flags and the chance to win £100 will encourage more people to get out and about and visit their local gardens. It is such a fun thing to do, as well as being healthy and free!”

 Residents who prefer to email in a photograph can send it to or post it to Photography Competition, South Walks House, Dorchester, DT1 1UZ. Terms and conditions apply.




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Categories: Dorset

All change for Dorset buses from next week

Wed, 07/19/2017 - 15:44

A new-look bus network for Dorset will come into place on Monday 24 July.

Dorset County Council has confirmed changes to existing services after it awarded new contracts to run public and school transport services across the county.

The county council has needed to save £1.5m from its public transport budget over the last two years, as well as £850,000 on school transport this year.

Following major reductions in its government funding, the council is focusing on subsidising seven key, town-to-town routes that support Dorset’s economy by helping people get to work, school and college.

At the same time, it has awarded contracts for 13 secondary and upper school bus services, starting from September.

The contracts have been awarded to four local bus companies: First, Go South Coast (Damory), South West Coaches, and Vale Coaches.

Cllr Daryl Turner, the council’s Cabinet member for natural and built environment, said:

“We have been working closely with transport companies over several months to develop the best possible mix of council-supported, commercial and community services that can serve as many people as possible while minimising disruption for bus users.

“We have now finalised the new network and will continue to work with operators and the public to make sure bus users experience a smooth transition to the new services.”

Around two thirds of public bus services in Dorset are run commercially by bus companies, with the council helping fund other routes that are not commercially viable but are important for local communities.

From Monday, about 70 per cent of the previous services will continue, accounting for more than 90 per cent of public transport trips in the county.

Since the contracts were awarded in May, bus companies have been deciding whether to run services that are no longer subsidised on a commercial basis, or to launch new services.

Local communities, with support from the council including grants and a toolkit, have also stepped in to provide an increasing number of community transport services to fill the gaps, especially in rural areas.

Useful links

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Categories: Dorset

Green Flag raised again at Christchurch Quay

Wed, 07/19/2017 - 14:04

Christchurch Quay has once again been recognised by the Green Flag Award Scheme.

The flag designates Christchurch Quay as having been judged to meet the national quality standard for parks and green spaces. The judges for the Green Flag awards assess the sites against eight strict criteria, including horticultural standards, cleanliness, sustainability and community involvement.

Green Flag Award 2017

Cllr Wendy Grace, on behalf of the Ward Councillors for Christchurch town centre said: “I’m so pleased that Christchurch Quay has yet again been recognised in this scheme. This flag represents all the hard work from our officers and many volunteers from the local community.  It’s fantastic to see their hard work once again rewarded.

 “We know how much quality green spaces matter to residents and visitors, and this award celebrates the dedication that goes into maintaining Christchurch Quay to such a high standard. On a sunny day like today, it’s wonderful to see so many families enjoying themselves here.”

Christchurch Quay has been recognised for the sixth year running and the green flag is now proudly flying on the flagpole at the Quomps splash park.

Green Flag at Christchurch Quay


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Categories: Dorset

Next phase of building works at Highcliffe Castle

Wed, 07/19/2017 - 11:47
Highcliffe Castle – Artist’s impression- Stained glass exhibition

The next phase of restoration works at Highcliffe Castle start on 31 July.

Once complete, the 18-month building project will allow visitors full access for the first time to the restored Penleaze wing of the castle. Building works will be undertaken by Greendale who were successful in the council’s tendering process.

As well as works to the Penleaze wing, the castle’s historic kitchen is being restored and new exhibition and activity spaces created. A new conservation studio will be created allowing an internationally important collection of stained glass to be restored and displayed.

The castle will also welcome back some original pieces of furniture which are currently held in storage by the V&A. New staircases and floors are being added and two lifts are also being installed meaning the whole castle will be accessible to all.

Cllr Sally Derham-Wilkes, Chairman of Community Committee, Christchurch Borough Council, said: “Highcliffe Castle really is a spectacular building and it’s fantastic we are able to carry out these works to restore it to its former glory.

“We must thank the public in advance for their understanding and patience while the building works take place and we aim to keep disruption to a minimum. I’m sure people will enjoy keeping up to date with how the project is progressing and once complete it will look fabulous.”

While the works take place the library and ante-library will be closed to the public and the whole castle will be closed from 1 November 2017-mid March 2018. A reduced admission rate is being charged to

Heritage Lottery Fund

visitors until building work is complete. The work is being funded thanks to a substantial grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund as well as additional funding from the Country Houses Foundation, The Pilgrim Trust and Wolfson.

Rob Hooker, Greendale Construction Director, said: “We are extremely pleased and excited to have been awarded the Phase 7 works contract at Highcliffe Castle and to return to undertake the next phase of these interesting works. It is an amazing Grade I listed building of historic importance and to be part of its refurbishment for future generations is a real honour and challenge. We look forward to collaboratively working with the design team, clients, Heritage Lottery Fund and the other funders to deliver this amazing project in February 2019.”

The Castle Kitchen will remain open throughout the build and regular updates on how the work is progressing will be published.

Highcliffe Castle

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Categories: Dorset

New fund to help communities without superfast broadband

Mon, 07/17/2017 - 13:49

A new community fund will help Dorset neighbourhoods where there are currently no plans for high-speed internet access.

The Superfast Dorset Community Broadband Fund has been set up to support the small number of areas not currently included in any superfast roll-out plans.

The £500,000 scheme enables Superfast Dorset to co-invest with communities by match funding up to half the costs of bringing faster broadband to their neighbourhood.

More than 95 per cent of Dorset premises can now take a superfast fibre broadband service – defined as download speeds of 24Mbps or greater.

Cllr Daryl Turner, Dorset County Council Cabinet Member for the Natural and Built Environment, said: “Current commercial and Superfast Dorset fibre roll-out plans will leave around just two per cent of Dorset premises without access to a faster connection.

“Technologies such as fixed wireless and satellite broadband can already serve most premises, but we know that some communities would rather pay a share of the costs to bring a superfast fibre solution to their area.

“That’s why we have set up the Superfast Dorset Community Broadband Fund. It allows us to provide the same level of public funding to communities which aren’t included in our fibre roll-out plans.”

More information about the scheme and how to apply can be seen at

Superfast broadband helps make everything happen online much faster than a standard broadband connection. The technology offers download speeds typically several times faster than standard broadband.

  • Everyone can be online at the same time
  • Download and watch TV and films without buffering
  • Make video calls
  • Work from home with a faster, more reliable connection

Fibre can now cost the same or less than standard broadband. But speeds don’t improve automatically. Residents and businesses must contact their chosen service provider and ask to switch to fibre broadband to get the faster connection.

Check if your property can get fibre or is included in current roll-out plans at You can also sign up for regular project updates and to receive an email when fibre arrives in your area.

More information

Superfast Dorset is a partnership between BT, the Department of Media, Culture and Sport (DCMS), Dorset Local Enterprise Partnership, Dorset County Council, Bournemouth Borough Council, the Borough of Poole, Christchurch Borough Council, East Dorset District Council, North Dorset District Council, Purbeck District Council, West Dorset District Council and Weymouth & Portland Borough Council.

The project brings superfast broadband to areas not covered by the commercial roll-out undertaken by BT, Virgin Media and others. Superfast Dorset has already enabled more than 570 roadside fibre broadband cabinets across the county, delivering superfast fibre broadband to more than 80,000 properties.

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Categories: Dorset

We’re proud to care

Mon, 07/17/2017 - 13:23

Councils across the South West are coming together to champion care and support workers and raise the profile of care.

Care providers can often experience difficulties in recruiting, which in turn affects the availability of care to people who could be living independently at home, or in care homes.

It’s a challenge we want to address by making people aware of how rewarding and worthwhile care work is as career choice, and encouraging the positive image that care deserves.

Dorset County Council is one of 16 councils across the South West, and Health Education England to support the campaign, establishing for the first time a regional approach to raising the profile of care.

An especially inspiring element to the campaign is the first-hand personal accounts from real care and support workers, who talk passionately about their love for care work.

The main campaign website features interviews with care and support workers, and links to recruitment portals where care providers across the region advertise their vacancies.

The campaign wants to reach all potential care workers, but is specifically targeting key audiences including younger people and those who have studied for a health and social care qualification; parents considering a return to work; people aged 50 plus who, with more life experience might want to give something back to their community; and students seeking employment over holiday periods.

Dorset County Council’s Cabinet member for Health and Care, Jill Haynes said:

“We want the incredible people who work in the care sector to feel proud of their vocation and for others to see it as an enormously rewarding area of work that they can become involved in.

“We want people to see that it has great career prospects, with many opportunities for progression in care and health.”

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Categories: Dorset

Brownfield sites sought for housing in Purbeck

Mon, 07/17/2017 - 13:05

Purbeck District Council wants to hear from owners of land, currently containing buildings or other structures, which could be considered for future re-development.

As part of a government requirement, the District Council is setting up a register of brownfield sites that have the potential to be developed for housing.

Councillor Laura Miller, Housing Portfolio Holder, said “Purbeck District Council supports the use of brownfield land for housing, wherever possible.

“The register will show us where suitable and available land is situated in the district so we can consider it for housing development ahead of greenfield sites.”

Councillor Miller continued: “I would encourage any landowner who is interested to submit their brownfield land for consideration.”

Sites have to be at least 0.25ha (just over half an acre) in size, or capable of supporting at least five homes.

The Council has to use the government’s official definition of brownfield land, stipulating a site will either contain buildings and/or structures. Sites containing agricultural buildings or certain mineral extraction, waste disposal sites or historic remains of buildings are not applicable.

The Council is able to accept submissions of sites between Monday 17 July and Tuesday 29 August 2017. Submissions can be sent to Purbeck District Council at Westport House, Worgret Road, Wareham   BH20 4PP or by email to 

  1. Information about brownfield registers 
  2. Definition of brownfield (previously developed) land. Source: National Planning Policy Framework: Land which is or was occupied by a permanent structure, including the curtilage of the developed land (although it should not be assumed that the whole of the curtilage should be developed) and any associated fixed surface infrastructure. This excludes: land that is or has been occupied by agricultural or forestry buildings; land that has been developed for minerals extraction or waste disposal by landfill purposes where provision for restoration has been made through development control procedures; land in built-up areas such as private residential gardens, parks, recreation grounds and allotments; and land that was previously-developed but where the remains of the permanent structure or fixed surface structure have blended into the landscape in the process of time.


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Categories: Dorset

Dorset Waste Partnership looks to schools to cook up summer treats

Mon, 07/17/2017 - 12:09

A Dorset school was recently presented with a special prize and cookery equipment when one of their pupils won a competition with a difference.

The Dorset Waste Partnership (DWP) asked children aged seven to 11 years from seven Dorset schools to take part in a special cooking competition.

The idea was simple. Each child was challenged to create a recipe at home out of typical summer food (e.g. food from barbecues, picnics or salads). Other ingredients could be used, but at least one component of the dish should have been considered to be leftovers.

The competition, as part of the DWP’s Love Food Hate Waste campaign, aimed to raise awareness among children and parents/carers about the environmental and financial cost of wasting food, encouraging everyone to create inventive and delicious meals out of leftovers.

Every entrant won a certificate, and each school was asked to judge one winner who received a prize. The DWP took professional photographs of the winning seven recipes, which were then made into recipe cards and inserted into a colourful cookbook folder which will be handed out at school summer events.

The DWP’s very own Sammy Strawberry then chose an overall winner, Harrison Strange from Blandford St Mary Primary School, who was presented with a goody bag and over £200 of cooking equipment for use at the school.

Dorset County Councillor David Walsh of the DWP’s Joint Committee, said:

“This competition has been a tremendous success and it’s great to see how the school children have used their culinary creativity to come up with some truly delicious dishes.

“We all like to indulge ourselves during the summer period, but the average family could save around £700 a year simply by throwing away less food.  The competition was a fun approach to showing both children and their families one of the ways this could be achieved and we hope to open it up to more Dorset schools in the future.

“I’d like to thank everyone who has been involved and congratulate all the winners. I’m looking forward to trying some of the delicious recipes at home myself!”

You can download and print the recipe cards at the DWP’s Love Food Hate Waste page.

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Categories: Dorset

The gifts that can backfire

Mon, 07/17/2017 - 11:50

There have been reports in national papers recently about some older people who have given away their homes, savings or other assets to try to avoid having to pay for residential or home care.

A small minority of people are trying to cheat the system by giving significant amounts of their assets to family and friends, hoping that this will bring them under the threshold for paying for social care.

The Care Act 2014 says that if a person has intentionally decreased their assets in order to reduce the amount that they have to pay for their care, then the council can charge them as if they still had the assets. Where the person transferred the assets to a third party, the council can recover the charges from the third party.

In January a complaint was made to the Local Government Ombudsman, that Dorset County Council had included gifts totalling £40,800 when assessing an individual’s ability to pay for care. The individual had given each of their two sons £20,400 at a time when they were aware that they were likely to need the money for their care. The ombudsman looked at the council’s investigation and found no evidence of fault in the council’s decision.

Jill Haynes, Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care said:

“People need to recognise that they are responsible for paying for their own care, unless their financial circumstances mean they cannot afford it.  In which case they will then be financially assessed to determine their contribution to the cost of their social care. We will always look closely when assessing people at the size of gifts and whether avoiding paying for care was a motivation in its timing.

“We also have a duty to make sure that older people are not coerced by their families into giving away their savings or their property”.

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Categories: Dorset

Fantastic sporty family fun in Purbeck

Fri, 07/14/2017 - 16:14

The summer holidays are nearly here and Purbeck Sports Centre is getting ready for an action-packed six weeks of fun and games.

The Sports Centre in Wareham has a bumper programme of activities for all ages, including favourites such as AFC Bournemouth football, tennis, badminton, trampoline, gymnastics and cricket.

There is a Purbeck Adventure Day Camp which will get children taking part in a variety of activities including swimming, orienteering and mini beast adventures.

Active Youth Afternoons return for 10s to 18, offering racket sports and swimming for £4.50.

There are lots of new family activities, including spinning, climbing and Clubbercise, and groups of two adults and two children can swim for just £13.50 a time.

The indoor pool is the perfect place to cool down or keep out of the rain and it is also home to intensive swimming lessons, diving, kayaking and a junior lifeguard academy.

The Sports Centre also hosts a high tech gym and a comprehensive range of exercise classes, including Zumba, Pilates, Yoga, Body Blast and Circuits, so there are lots of opportunities to keep up that training regime or start something new.

If you want to relax, pop upstairs to the onsite sports bar and café with views towards the Purbeck Ridge, Sky Sports and a delicious range of food and beverages.

Michelle Goodman, Sports Centre Manager, said: “We’ve got another super selection of sports and activities lined up for the summer. With some firm favourites and some exciting new ideas, we’re looking forward to fantastic family fun all summer long.”

See all the details on the Purbeck Sports Centre’s web pages.

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Categories: Dorset

Larksmead Pre-school says thanks for your support

Fri, 07/14/2017 - 11:40
Larksmead Pre-School will close its doors on Friday 21 July after over 30 years in providing a Pre-School service.

The Pre-School would like to thank everyone who has supported them over the years. Including the families that have used the setting, to Companies that have given us raffle prizes and donated money and to everyone who has joined us in the fund raising events. This also includes North Dorset District Council who provided them with a temporary location from 2014.

Since 2014, the Pre-School has been located within the district Councils site on Salisbury Road.

Larksmead Pre-school set to close.

The district council helped Larksmead when they were in need of new premises and has worked closely with the Pre-School while they looked for a permanent site.

Tracey Caffery, Larksmead Pre-Schools Chairperson said “It is with great sadness that we have decided to close the Pre-School. Unfortunately we have had to make this tough decision due to the high cost of the project and timings. A huge thank you to North Dorset District Council for stepping in 3 years ago and providing us with the use of ‘The Lodge’.

Cllr Michael Roake, North Dorset District Council Environment Portfolio Holder said “We have provided  premises for Larksmead at Nordon since 2014. We worked closely with them to keep them at Salisbury Road while they looked for a permanent site. It is with tremendous sadness that the Pre-School has decided to close at the end of the Summer Term. We would like to take this opportunity to wish the Pre-School every success if there was to be any development”

The Pre-Schools’ final day will be Friday 21 July 2017.

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Categories: Dorset

Get out and about for a healthy lifestyle

Fri, 07/14/2017 - 08:27

Nationally we spend more each year on the treatment of obesity and diabetes than we do on the police, fire service and judicial system combined.
In 2014/15, it was estimated that the NHS in England spent £5.1 billion on overweight and obesity-related ill-health. This also puts pressure on our social care system.

Council Leader Cllr Rebecca Knox said:
“If we can help and encourage people to adopt healthy lifestyles and lead active lives, they will be more likely to avoid preventable illnesses as they grow older.

“Dorset is a wonderful and unique county. There are lots of opportunities for people to use the natural environment and get active for free.”

Did you know? Dorset residents live longer than the national average, but more Dorset adults are overweight than adults in other areas.

What could you do to get active and enjoy the outdoors?

By Numbers – Dorset’s health

Understanding our community is key to planning for the future.
Find out more from our research team and the data they collect.


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Categories: Dorset

Go to the park, take a photograph and you could win £100!

Thu, 07/13/2017 - 17:16

A competition has been launched to celebrate the beauty of Weymouth and Portland’s parks and gardens.

People are being asked to go to their local park or garden, take a photograph and post it on Twitter or Instagram using either #loveweyportparks

The best snap, judged by Mayor of Weymouth & Portland Cllr Kevin Brookes, will be awarded £100. The competition will run until 30 September 2017.

Cllr Brookes said: “Our parks are beautiful, we are very lucky to have so many stunning public gardens and green spaces to walk, play and relax in. But how often do we find time to enjoy them?

“The aim of this competition is to get more people to enjoy the beautiful places on their doorstep. All you have to do is go to the park, send us a photo and you could win £100! “We are also very lucky here in Weymouth and Portland to have so many dedicated volunteers and Friends Groups who work hard to help make our parks and gardens special places for so many to enjoy.”

There are 10 parks and gardens in Weymouth and Portland and they host a programme of community events including art exhibitions, park runs, concerts and outdoor shows.

Cllr Kate Wheller, Community Facilities Briefholder at Weymouth & Portland Borough Council, said: “Weymouth and Portland’s award-winning parks and gardens are among the best in country. Enjoying them is free, so why not go to your local park, take a snap and you could win £100!”

There is one prize of £100 which will be awarded to the best photograph taken in one of the borough’s parks or gardens. Photographs can also be emailed in to or posted to Parks Photography Competition, South Walks House, Dorchester, DT1 1UZ.

Full details of the competition and the terms and conditions are available.

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Categories: Dorset

Internet car purchase was a poorly repaired insurance write-off

Thu, 07/13/2017 - 14:50

A car trader who sold a Weymouth man a poorly repaired vehicle that had been an insurance write-off has been prosecuted following an investigation by Dorset County Council’s Trading Standards.On 5 July 2017, at Weymouth Magistrates Court, Steven Banda (aged 41 of Watermark Close, Nottingham), trading as SKB Car Sales, was found guilty of selling an unroadworthy vehicle contrary to the Road Traffic Act 1988.

He was also found guilty of misleading consumers by describing the Peugeot 208 in an internet advert as ‘excellent condition inside and outside’ when in fact it was a poorly repaired write-off, contrary to the Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations 2008.

After the one day trial he was fined £500, ordered to pay compensation of £700 and prosecution costs of £872.

The court heard how the vehicle was purchased by a Weymouth man for £3,700 after assurances were given about the vehicle’s condition and an explanation that, although the car was a category D write-off, it had only needed a wing and minor suspension repairs. After delivery, the buyer was only able to drive the car five miles before the engine management light came on and later serious faults were discovered. After failing to resolve his dispute with the trader, the buyer complained via the Citizens Advice Consumer Service, leading to an investigation by trading standards officers.

 An independent expert inspected the vehicle and found that the vehicle was ‘in a dangerous condition and un-useable in its present state’.

In mitigation Mr Banda said that his was only a small business, he had not intended to mislead anyone or sell an unroadworthy car and would like to apologise to the victim. Chair of the magistrates said that Banda had failed to take the extra care that was required of a car trader.

Councillor Deborah Croney, Dorset County Council Cabinet Member with responsibility for trading standards, said:

“This underlines the need for car traders to carry out proper checks on vehicles before they supply them to consumers. Any business that is in doubt about their legal responsibilities in this area can contact our trading standards business advice line on 01305 224702.

“By providing advice to car traders on legal requirements and intervening where problems are identified our trading standards service aims to reduce safety risks to car buyers and other road users.”

Consumers thinking of buying a second hand car can look for a trader who is a member of the trading standards Buy With Confidence trader approval scheme. Members are audited by Trading Standards prior to acceptance in the scheme. Find a trader in the ‘Buy With Confidence’ scheme or telephone the Citizens Advice consumer service on 03454 04 05 06.

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Categories: Dorset

Want to find out about the Future Weymouth consultation? Come along to our roadshow events

Thu, 07/13/2017 - 14:36

A series of roadshow events are planned to give people in Weymouth the opportunity to speak with council officials about the proposed town council.

People can find out more about the proposed town council at the roadshow events

People in Weymouth are being asked for views on whether a town council should be set up.

If the government approves the Future Dorset proposal, Weymouth and Portland Borough Council will not exist in 2019.

If this happens, Weymouth would be the only council in the unitary authority area without a parish or town council. Portland has a town council and isn’t involved in this review.

You can read the full plans and complete the consultation online. The consultation runs until 1 September.

Roadshow events

Throughout the summer, we’ll be out across Weymouth hosting a series of roadshow events.

This is to give you the chance to speak with councillors and council staff about the proposals.

We are holding events in the following locations:

  • Thursday 20 July, 11am to 2pm, Greenhill Gardens
  • Tuesday 25 July, 2pm to 5pm, Town Centre (New Bond Street)
  • Saturday 29 July, 11am to 2pm, Town Centre (New Bond Street)
  • Wednesday 9 August, 1pm to 4pm, Wyke Gardens
  • Thursday 24 August, 10am to 1pm, The Esplanade (outside the beach office)
Have your say

We want as many views as possible to make sure we make the right decision for the town.

This consultation is about the potential of setting up the town council. We will consult about how a potential town council would operate later in the year.

You can complete the consultation at

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Categories: Dorset

Councillors vote to join joint committee

Tue, 07/11/2017 - 13:53
Allendale Community Centre

Members of East Dorset District Council have voted to be involved in the debates and decision making leading to the potential creation of a new structure for Local Government for the Dorset area by taking up seats on a joint committee being set up from September.

At their Full Council meeting on 10 July members approved joining the committee on the condition that it comprises of six members from Dorset County Council and two members from each district and borough council in the proposed new Dorset area that choose to take up their seats. This means there could be a total of 16 councillors sitting on the committee.

The decision to join the committee does not change the vote taken by members in January not to support the Future Dorset proposal. It simply means that East Dorset councillors are able to influence plans and have voting rights moving forward. Should the Secretary of State announce that he is ‘minded to’ support the Future Dorset proposal it would be for councillors to then decide if they wish to review their original decision.

The role of the committee will be to look at things such as council tax harmonisation, the disaggregation of services and budgets for any new authority that might be created.

Cllr Simon Tong, Portfolio Holder for Change and Transformation, said: “After a full and detailed debate, East Dorset District Council has voted to take part in cross-county discussions on the future of local government in Dorset.

“We voted in January not to be part of the Future Dorset submission and that decision stands. However, members recognise that the interests of East Dorset residents will be best served if our council takes up its seats so that we are able to share in these discussions while we await the decision of the Secretary of State.”

The recommendation was amended to include reference to the fact that East Dorset reserves the right to explore alternative options whilst sitting on the Dorset area joint committee.


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Categories: Dorset

Awards for Weymouth Crematorium

Tue, 07/11/2017 - 13:49

Staff efforts to help the bereaved have been recognised.

Workers at Weymouth Crematorium have been presented with two awards by the Institute of Cemetery and Crematorium Management.

The Greenspace and Bereavement Services Team, who are part of Weymouth & Portland Borough Council, have received the Gold Standard in the Charter for the Bereaved Assessment Process for Cremation and the Bronze Standard in the Charter for the Bereaved Assessment Process for Burial.

Kate Wheller, Community Facilities Briefholder at Weymouth & Portland Borough Council, said: “I am delighted the hard work of staff has been recognised. It is good to have the high quality of the service we offer celebrated.”

Weymouth & Portland Borough Council runs Weymouth Crematorium which shares a six acre site with Weymouth Cemetery. 

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Categories: Dorset

Chance to see plans for new Wimborne First School

Tue, 07/11/2017 - 13:43

Wimborne residents are invited to find out more about plans for a replacement Wimborne First School.

A public information event is being held at Wimborne First School on School Lane on Thursday 20 July between 3.30pm and 6pm.

Dorset County Council will be displaying its design proposals for the new school buildings, which will form part of the new housing development by Bloor Homes north of Wimborne.

There will be an opportunity for people to comment on the proposals, while representatives from the county council will be on hand to answer any questions.

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Categories: Dorset

Ultrafast broadband brings multi million pound boost for Dorset business

Mon, 07/10/2017 - 14:01

Thousands more homes and businesses will be able to benefit from the fastest broadband speeds under multi million pound plans unveiled today.

Engineering work to be completed by summer 2019 is expected to extend the fibre broadband network to over 3,800 premises in the county – with most getting access to full fibre “ultrafast” connections, capable of download speeds of up to one gigabit per second (1Gbps).

Around 95 per cent of premises in Dorset can already order a superfast fibre broadband service.

This latest investment, announced by Dorset Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) and managed through the Superfast Dorset Programme, particularly focuses on business premises in areas such as:

Dorset Innovation Park Enterprise Zone – a 56 hectare site near Wool focused on the marine, defence and energy sectors. It houses nationally important advanced engineering companies in the defence sector and is expected to create 2,000 new jobs and attract dozens of new businesses to the area.

Aviation Business Park – the premier business park for aerospace advanced manufacturing in the South West. This 60 hectare site near Bournemouth Airport has the potential to create up to 10,000 new highly skilled jobs over the next decade.

Western Dorset Growth Strategy area – a series of key housing and employment sites in the west of the county providing around 9,500 new homes and highly-skilled jobs

A significant number of residential premises in Dorset not included in any current fibre broadband roll-out plans will also benefit. This includes homes in:

Stinsford/Lower Bockhampton
East Burton
Harman’s Cross
Worgret Hill, Wareham
Southwell, Portland

Cllr Daryl Turner, Dorset County Council Cabinet Member for the Natural and Built Environment, said: “The work we are announcing today will push fibre coverage even further. It will boost the local economy by giving more homes and businesses access to the very fastest broadband speeds.

“Meanwhile, we continue to work with the minority of Dorset communities which are now outside fibre broadband plans, helping them access funding towards alternative solutions.”

The Superfast Dorset Programme uses a mix of public and private funding to bring fibre broadband to areas not covered by the commercial rollout undertaken by companies such as Virgin Media and Openreach, the local network business which is part of BT Group.

The work announced today will cost £7.4m. It will be undertaken by BT and funded as follows:

Dorset LEP – £2m
Central government (Broadband Delivery UK) – £2m
BT – £3.4m

Rob Dunford, Interim Dorset LEP Director said: “A high speed digital infrastructure is crucial to supporting local economic growth. A better connected Dorset helps to create the right conditions for businesses to thrive and for more highly skilled jobs and housing to be created.

“Our Enterprise Zone at Dorset Innovation Park, the Aviation Business Park and the Western Dorset Growth Strategy area are strategically important employment sites currently being supported by Dorset LEP and now that they are due to benefit from the fastest broadband speeds, Dorset is becoming an even more attractive place to do business.”

Paul Coles, BT’s regional partnership director for the South West, said: “This latest multi million pound investment in high-speed broadband is another step forward for Dorset.

“Huge progress has been made since the first Superfast Dorset contract was announced less than four years ago. This strong partnership between Dorset’s councils and BT has created a programme that is transforming the opportunities available for many thousands of local households and businesses. Widespread availability of faster broadband is already providing a major boost for the county’s economy because whatever you do online you can do it better with fibre broadband.

“And we recognise there is still more to do as we work to extend the fibre broadband network even further. We are committed to making high-speed broadband as widely available as possible.”

The Superfast Dorset project has already enabled more than 570 roadside fibre broadband cabinets across the county, delivering superfast fibre broadband to more than 80,000 properties. The work announced today connects a further 3,800 premises.

All the engineering work for Superfast Dorset is being carried out by Openreach. Residents and businesses with access to fibre broadband can choose from a wide range of internet service providers and benefit from competitive pricing and products.

Fibre broadband helps make everything happen online much faster than a standard broadband connection. The technology offers download speeds typically several times faster than standard broadband. Residents and businesses must arrange an upgrade with their chosen service provider in order to get the faster speeds.

To check if your home or business can get fibre visit You can also sign up for regular project updates and to receive an email when fibre arrives in your area.

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Categories: Dorset