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Updated: 2 hours 49 min ago

Outstanding Contribution to Tourism’ accolade awarded to the Jurassic Coast team at Dorset Tourism Awards

Fri, 11/17/2017 - 15:57

The Jurassic Coast team took the accolade of ‘Outstanding Contribution to Tourism’ award in a brand- new surprise category announced at the Dorset Tourism Awards, which took place at The Lighthouse in Poole on November 16th.

Dorset Tourism Awards headline sponsor and award category sponsor, Saffery Champness Accountants presented the award to the team.

Nick Fernyhough from Saffery said:

“This award could not have gone to a more deserving winner and we are delighted to be able to acknowledge, reward and celebrate the successes of the Jurassic Coast team. It was back in 2001 when the Jurassic Coast became the first natural World Heritage Site to be designated in the UK. Since then a dedicated team has been working flat out, both to conserve this outstanding asset and to make best use of it for education and economic advantage. A result has been that the Jurassic Coast is now associated across the world with Dorset, helping put Dorset on the international map.

“The team has encountered all kinds of obstacles – financial, geological and political- but they are to be commended for their dedication and ultimately for their outstanding contribution to Dorset tourism.”

On hearing the news, Cllr. Daryl Turner, Cabinet Member for the Natural & Built Environment expressed his delight:

“Dorset County Council have the privilege of being associated with an outstanding team working in an outstanding location which draws visitors to Dorset globally. They highlight and promote the immense value of our beautiful coast & everything good about Dorset. Many congratulations on your well-deserved award.”

Sally King, Visitor Tourism and Access Manager for the Jurassic Coast since 2000, said:

“This means so much. It has been an absolute privilege to have overseen the development and creation of what is now a global brand, the Jurassic Coast. Together with many other equally dedicated organisations and individuals, we have succeeded in creating a truly outstanding visitor offer which contributes significantly to the local economy of Dorset. This award really recognises the immense amount of passion, innovation and sheer determination which has, and continues to be, at the core of all we do.”

CEO of the Jurassic Coast Trust, Sam Rose enthused, “We had absolutely no idea of our win until this evening. It’s an amazing result.

” We’re exceptionally proud of everything that our team has achieved for Dorset and the Jurassic Coast over the last 17 years – we’re encouraging people to love, understand and value the Jurassic Coast as we want everyone to have the best possible experience and get as many people involved as possible. We’re looking forward to building on all the fantastic work that has already been done!”

Visitor, Tourism and Access responsibilities for the Jurassic Coast sit within the Dorset Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) team, hosted by Dorset County Council. The Dorset AONB Partnership brings together 20 organisations to conserve and enhance the natural beauty of this landscape. Find out more about the AONB

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Categories: Dorset

Archaeological Digs imminent at Fairfield Car Park

Fri, 11/17/2017 - 14:20
What is happening?

The Dorchester retail proposals for the town centre is underway, with the masterplan being drafted. Each element of the masterplan is being carefully considered and appraised.

We value and respect Dorchester’s history and heritage. While looking to the future, we would also seek to protect Dorchester’s history.

Following discussions with archaeology experts, West Dorset District Council has commissioned some excavation work on the Fairfield Car park site. This will further explore any archaeological interest that may exist there.  The excavations, carried out by archaeological firm ‘Context One’ will involve carrying out excavations to sample the site.

Where will it happen?

The trenches will be located at four sites in the car park. These sites have been chosen with the advice of the County Archaeologist to compliment the previous 7 sites dug in 2009. We have arranged the dig in order to minimise the impact on parking and the Dorchester market.

A mechanical excavator will dig below the surface, and any layer of archaeology underneath will then be hand dug. Any archaeological interest will then be recorded and potentially taken for review. The results of this will inform future work on the site.

When will it happen?

Barriers will be in place from Monday 20 November at the sites, across Fairfield long stay car park. The excavation works will be starting on Tuesday 21 November. We expect the work – including re-surfacing the trenches – to take up to 3 working days per site, over the course of about 3 weeks.

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Categories: Dorset

Outstanding success for Moors Valley Country Park at Dorset Tourism Awards

Fri, 11/17/2017 - 11:32

Staff and volunteers at Moors Valley Country Park and Forest near Ringwood are celebrating a third year of success in the Dorset Tourism Awards having taken Gold in the Large Attraction category.

Moors Valley celebrate success at Dorset Tourism Awards 2017

The Park was also awarded Silver in the new Artistic, Cultural and Learning Experience category, and Communication Ranger Katie Davies received a personal award for Outstanding Customer Service. Go Ape, which provides tree top adventures at Moors Valley also received a Silver award in the Active and Sporting Experience category.

“To win one award is amazing, but to come away with so many is simply fantastic!” said Clare Gronow, Team Leader at the park.

“Delivering that special Moors Valley experience would not be possible without our team of incredibly dedicated staff. Their combined talents play a huge part in making sure all our 750,000 visitors enjoy their time with us, regardless of age or ability, so I am really delighted that those efforts have been recognised across so many awards this year.”

Jointly owned and managed by East Dorset District Council and the Forestry Commission, Moors Valley offers a unique combination of outdoor play, working forest and wonderful wildlife for everyone to enjoy in a safe outdoor environment. One of its core objectives is to provide opportunities for visitors to experience, understand and learn about wildlife and wider environmental issues and the Park’s environmental education and creative art and craft programme currently reaches over 10,000 people every year. A packed programme of family events runs throughout December and Moors Valley is looking forward to another great year in 2018 as it celebrates its 30th anniversary.

The latest Dorset Tourism Awards bring the number of tourism accolades won by the Park in the last three years to 11.

Previous awards

In the 2015 Dorset Tourism Awards, Moors Valley won Large Visitor Attraction (Gold) and Access and Inclusivity (Silver) as well as being named Winner of Winners. In 2016 the Park carried off Gold in both the Sustainable Tourism and Access and Inclusivity categories. In the regional South West Tourism Excellence Awards it achieved Silver in the Large Visitor Attraction category in 2015/6 and Bronze in both the Sustainable Tourism and Access & Inclusivity categories in 2016/17.

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Categories: Dorset

Christchurch members vote to hold local poll

Fri, 11/17/2017 - 07:50
Poll

Christchurch Borough Council has voted to hold a local poll around local government reorganisation in Dorset.

In March members approved holding a postal ballot to get the thoughts on whether or not residents would support joining a new unitary authority with Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole. However, this was deferred as a decision on the Future Dorset proposal was delayed due to a number of reasons, including the General Election.

Following the announcement by the Secretary of State, the Rt. Hon. Sajid Javid MP, that he is ‘minded to’ support the Future Dorset submission, members have now voted to proceed with the poll.

Cllr David Flagg, Leader of the Council, Christchurch Borough Council, said: “The Secretary of State has allowed a period of representation and it is important we use that time to seek the views of the residents we are elected to represent.

“We will be asking them if they support the Future Dorset submission which would see Christchurch become part of a new unitary authority with Bournemouth and Poole. I would encourage those residents eligible to vote to return their postal ballots and have their say.”

The poll will be a postal ballot and residents will have two weeks to return their ballot papers. Papers will be sent out on 1 December to all residents on the electoral register with a return date of 14 December.

A further extraordinary council meeting will be held to finalise Christchurch Borough Council’s representation to the Secretary of State once the results of the ballot are announced.

Members also voted to hold a Community Governance Review to seek residents’ views and offer the opportunity to review its community governance structures at parish level. This could include forming a Christchurch Town Council. Residents and interested parties will be able to make representations to the council in the new year.

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Categories: Dorset

Large developments approved at West Dorset Planning Committee

Thu, 11/16/2017 - 17:13

Two large developments have been approved  at West Dorset District Council’s Planning Committee.

Development at Crossways

Full planning permission for the construction of 99 open market and affordable homes, a new doctors surgery as well as a replacement village hall has been given the green light by councillors today (16 November). The application relates to land South of Warmwell Road in Crossways.

As part of the same application, councillors approved an outline application for 401 open market and affordable homes.

In both of these Crossways applications, 35 per cent of affordable housing has been agreed by the council and the developer.

After the meeting Cllr Ian Gardner, West Dorset District Council’s Portfolio Holder for Planning, said:

“We’re pleased that we’ve been able to approve another large development specified in our local plan.

“Once completed, this site will provide much need open market and affordable housing, as well as community facilities such as a new village hall and Doctors Surgery.”

“We look forward to working with C & G properties Ltd  in order to bring this development forward.”

Development of Sherborne Hotel Sherborne Hotel site set for development

A development of 24 bedroom hotel, 82 extra care apartments and 37 extra care lodges, together with communal facilities was approved by a clear majority of councillors at The Sherborne Hotel site on Horsecastles Lane.

After the meeting, Cllr Ian Gardner said:

“We’re pleased to be able to approve this application, which is largely supported by local residents and businesses.

“As well as providing a large number of extra care properties, once completed, this development will provide an additional boost to employment and tourism through the hotel.”

You can see the full developments plans on dorsetforyou.com by searching the relevant planning app number:

  • Sherborne Hotel Site – WD/D/16/002398
  • Land South of Warmwell Road, Crossways – WD/D/16/000378

 

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Categories: Dorset

Have your say on Issues and Options Document for North Dorset Local Plan Review

Thu, 11/16/2017 - 12:39

Residents, businesses and local organisations have an opportunity to have their say during a consultation on an Issues and Options Document for North Dorset’s Local Plan Review.

North Dorset Local Plan Review – Issues and Options Consultation

The current Local Plan sets out the long term strategic planning policies for the district. It gives clear guidance on how proposals for development will be considered. The local plan is the main basis for making decisions on planning applications.

The plan covers important issues such as where housing should be built and what infrastructure may be needed. It also looks at how the environment can be protected and how future developments can be made more sustainable.

The Inspector, who examined the plan, recommended a number of modifications to enable it to be adopted. This included a modification relating to the need for an early review. This was to take account of new evidence relating to the level of housing need in the district.

Issues and Options Document Review is ‘key stage’

Cllr David Walsh, North Dorset District Council’s Portfolio Holder for Planning, said:

“The consultation on the Issues and Options Document is a key stage in the Local Plan Review process. It allows residents, town and parish councils, community groups, businesses and landowners to have their say on how much development the council should be planning for and where that development should be located.

“I would urge anyone with an interest in the future of North Dorset to respond to the consultation and attend one of the drop-in sessions that have been arranged.  All of the responses received will be fully considered and analysed prior to the council moving on to the next stage of the review process.”

This consultation forms part of the Regulation 18 consultation for the review of the Local Plan. The council is reviewing the Local Plan and would like to know what you think.

The consultation on the Issues and Options Document will run from 27 November to 22 January.

From 27 November, you can view the Issues and Options Document and tell us your views at dorsetforyou.gov.uk.

Drop-in sessions

Find out more about the review and discuss the plans with a Planning Policy Officer at a drop-in session:

Area Location Date Time Blandford Nordon  – District council offices 27 November 2017 10am – 7pm Shaftesbury Shaftesbury Town Hall 29 November 10am – 7pm Gillingham Shreen Room, Riversmeet Leisure Centre 5 December 10am – 7pm Sturminster Newton Bow Room, The Exchange 11 December 10am – 7pm Stalbridge TheHub@Stalbridge 12 December 1.30pm – 7pm

You can send your completed consultation forms via email to planningpolicy@north-dorset.gov.uk. Alternatively, send them by post to Planning Policy (North Dorset), South Walks House, South Walks Road, Dorchester, DT1 1UZ.

The consultation will end on 22 January 2018. 

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Categories: Dorset

Have your say on Wareham bridge ramps

Wed, 11/15/2017 - 17:10

Residents can now have their say on the planning application for new ramps to be added to Wareham Railway Station footbridge.

Dorset Highways has applied for planning permission from Dorset County Council to build the scheme, with details available through the online planning portal or at Wareham library.

The current level crossing by Wareham Railway Station has a long history and, following safety improvement requirements in 2009, has had a safety attendant monitoring the crossing between 6am and 1am (the following morning) when trains are scheduled to pass.

To provide a safer, permanent crossing facility, highway engineers have worked with Network Rail to design step-free access ramps up to the Wareham railway footbridge.

A listed building application has also been submitted to Purbeck District Council, which residents can also comment on.

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Categories: Dorset

Get your business digital

Wed, 11/15/2017 - 12:31

Digital solutions help businesses boost revenues and reduce costs and Dorset has some of the best connectivity anywhere in the UK – but some Dorset businesses lack the skills to make use of the opportunity.

A new collaboration to help SMEs across Dorset to exploit today’s digital opportunities starts on Friday (17 November) as part of the North Dorset Business Day in Sturminster Newton.

Business advisors at the Growth Hub are teaming up with Superfast Dorset which has brought the chance to connect to superfast broadband to 80,000 premises including thousands of businesses. People can find out about availability and pick up some digital tips at the same time.

Last year Superfast Dorset asked businesses which had superfast broadband for more than a year how it was helping them. Nearly half said it reduced their costs while over a fifth said it increased their profits. Others said it helped them work in new and different ways, or access new markets.

The results confirm national studies that suggest that from relatively simple steps such as a restaurant adopting online bookings, to wholesale business transformation, all UK companies could benefit by adopting digital ways of working.

Deborah Croney, Dorset County Council cabinet member for economic growth, said:

“The Lloyds Bank Business Digital Index 2017, published this month (1 Nov), shows that while businesses and charities are becoming more digitally capable, there is a growing minority or organisations with low capability. This year, 1.6M small businesses lack basic digital skills nationally.

“Meanwhile the most digital business leaders are three times as likely to report increasing turnovers.”

The digital collaboration in Sturminster Newton is part of a wider £13.4M business support scheme. To find out more, contact the Dorset Growth Hub or ring 03454 586 480.

To find out whether you can order a superfast service today, check the checker.

Or come along to the North Dorset Business Day at the Exchange in Sturminster Newton between 10am and 2pm to speak to advisors.

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Categories: Dorset

Funding available to help older people connect with nature

Tue, 11/14/2017 - 15:22

Local communities can now apply for funding and help older people in Dorset get active outdoors.

Thanks to the Big Lottery Fund, Stepping into Nature has grants from £100 up to £2,000 for projects in Dorset.

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

“We want to encourage local community groups to come forward with ideas that help older people get outdoors in the natural environment.

“Being outdoors and sharing it with someone, even for a short time, is a crucial part of living well.

“Many people today have become detached from the natural world for various reasons such as mobility, lack of confidence or transport. The grants offer a great opportunity to fund projects which helps reconnect older people, including those with dementia, with nature and enjoy the benefits it brings to health and wellbeing.”

Julie Hammon, Project Officer for Dorset Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) who is leading on the initiative, said:

“We would really like to see new projects which make the natural environment accessible for all, create opportunities to learn new skills and reduce feelings of social isolation and loneliness in local communities.

“We are particularly keen to hear from people in Dorchester, Bridport, Beaminster, Swanage, Lyme Regis, Chickerell or the immediate surrounding areas who are looking at creating dementia friendly greenspaces or activities.”

Find out more about the project and how to apply.

You can also email stepin2nature@dorsetcc.gov.uk, or call Julie Hammon for an informal chat about your project on 01305 224785.

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Categories: Dorset

Residents have another say on proposed Weymouth town council

Tue, 11/14/2017 - 08:54

Following the consultation over the summer, you now have another opportunity to let us know what you think about the proposed town council for Weymouth.

Residents have another opportunity to have their say on the proposals for a town council in Weymouth.

Residents will have another chance to have their say on the proposed town council for Weymouth.

During the summer, we asked residents whether they would agree with the formation of the town council.

The 12-week consultation asked what people thought about the proposal for the town council. It also asked people to choose their preferred name for the council.

Proposals

Under the Future Dorset proposal, the borough council would cease to exist in April 2019.

The Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, Sajid Javid, has said he is ‘minded to’ support the Future Dorset proposal.

If the government fully agrees to the unitary council, Weymouth will be the only place in the new unitary area without a parish council.

Good response

The consultation over the summer saw almost 1,000 people respond.

Councillors and officers also spoke with about 900 people at roadshow events across the town.

Residents are in favour, with 77% agreeing or strongly agreeing with the idea of a single town council for Weymouth.

The consultation also found that residents see Weymouth as their community(68.9%), compared to their own ward (21.1%).

There is strong support for the name of any potential council to be Weymouth Town Council (56%).

There were a number of comments about the number of councillors. Some residents feel that 29 councillors would be too much for the town council.

Cllr Alison Reed, briefholder for corporate affairs and continuous improvement at Weymouth and Portland Borough Council, said: “We understand residents’ concerns about the number of councillors and wards.

“Under the current proposals, the number of residents each councillor represents would already be higher than other town and parish councils in Dorset. It would also be higher than the similarly large Salisbury Town Council.

“We recommend that the number of councillors should stay the same, with an opportunity to review after the council is set up.

“Any changes to the wards and numbers of councillors will need to be part of a boundary review. We feel it makes more sense to look at this when any town council is in place.”

Further consultation

As part of the Community Governance Review process, residents have another opportunity to have your say on the proposals.

You can complete the consultation, which runs until 12 January 2018 at www.futureweymouth.co.uk

It asks what your views on the final proposals for a town council, which are:

  • The creation of a single parish council covering the Weymouth area.
  • The name of the proposed new parish council will be Weymouth Town Council.
  • The first election to the proposed new parish council to be in 2019 and then every fourth year thereafter.
  • The number of councillors to be elected to the proposed new parish council (council size) will be 29.
  • The proposed new parish will be divided into 12 wards for the purposes of electing councillors.
  • The boundaries of the wards of the proposed new town council will follow the boundaries of the borough council’s wards.
  • The names and number of councillors to the proposed wards will replicate the existing borough wards.

“Residents have already let us know that they support a town council,” said Cllr Reed. “You now have another opportunity to have your say on what that will look like.

“This is great opportunity to keep a local voice for Weymouth. A strong town council will not only provide services for the town, but it will also speak for and represent Weymouth.”

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Categories: Dorset

Buckland Newton Neighbourhood Plan agreed

Mon, 11/13/2017 - 12:50

The local community in Buckland Newton has taken a significant step closer to having greater influence over planning decisions in their area.

Buckland Newton Neighbourhood Plan agreed

A final version of the Buckland Newton Neighbourhood Plan was submitted to the district council for examination. Following this, a referendum was held on whether to accept or reject the plan on 2 November.

Residents of Buckland Newton voted to accept the plan, with 59.5 per cent of votes cast in favour.

The plan was drawn up by local people, and agreed by the parish council, who feel confident that the plan reflects the hopes and views of the local community.

Neighbourhood plans were introduced in the Localism Act 2011, aiming to give residents more say in the future use of land and buildings in their area. For example a neighbourhood plan can say where new homes, shops or offices might be built or where important green spaces might be protected.

The Buckland Newton neighbourhood Plan will now proceed to being made part of the development plan

Determining applications

Cllr Ian Gardner, West Dorset District Council’s Planning Portfolio Holder, said:
“It is great news that the residents of Buckland Newton have agreed to adopt their Neighbourhood Plan; the latest area so to do. Their Plan will now be used in determining planning applications and consequently shape the development of their community .”

See the full result of the referendum.

You can view the plan online at dorsetforyou.gov.uk/Buckland-Newton-Neighbourhood-Plan

A hard copy of the plan is available at the district council offices in South Walks House, Dorchester.

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Categories: Dorset

Festive free parking in Purbeck

Fri, 11/10/2017 - 17:05

This December, Christmas shoppers in Purbeck will be able to enjoy some free parking.

Purbeck District Council and Wareham Town Council will be helping people support traders on Small Business Saturday, 2 December.

Shoppers can enjoy free parking in car parks at Bonnets Lane, Connegar Lane, Howards Lane, Streche Road and the Rempstone Centre, Wareham and at West Street, Corfe Castle.

The District and Town Councils worked with the Wareham and Corfe Castle Chambers of Trade to make this possible.

The District Council and Town Council will also be waiving parking charges in their Wareham car parks on Sunday 10 December (when Santa comes to town!), Friday 22 and Saturday 23 December.

Free parking will also be available in Corfe Castle West Street car park on Saturdays 9, 16 and 23 December.

Councillor Cherry Brooks, Economy and Infrastructure Spokesperson for Purbeck District Council, said: “We are grateful to Wareham and Corfe Castle Chambers of Trade for helping us support our local traders again in the run-up to Christmas.

“The district hosts a super range of independent shops and businesses, so take advantage of the free parking and get something a little different for friends and family this Christmas!”

Swanage Town Council will be providing free parking in its Broad Road and Main Beach long stay car parks on all the Saturdays in December and the first Saturday in January. On the other days in December, parking will be £1 per day in these two car parks.

Norden car park and Dorset County Council-owned car parks at the Quay and St Johns Hill, Wareham are not included in the free parking offer.

 

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Categories: Dorset

Excellent engagement with Coastal Strategy

Fri, 11/10/2017 - 10:47

An interim report containing the Coastal Strategy engagement feedback will be presented to members in January 2018.

With over 1,500 comments received by residents, community groups and schoolchildren, officers are continuing to review them prior to reporting back the key findings.

Matti Raudsepp, Strategic Director

Matti Raudsepp, Strategic Director, Christchurch and East Dorset Councils, said: “We have been extremely pleased with the high level of engagement in the Coastal Strategy, which was far higher than we could have anticipated. We would like to thank everybody who took the time to get involved with both the face-to-face and online engagement.

“We had originally hoped to be able to consult on a draft strategy in December 2017, but as a result of the huge number of comments and suggestions received, we have decided to amend the timetable to allow additional time to fully analyse all the comments received.”

A revised project timetable, along with the suggested approach to the Coastal Strategy moving forward will be presented to Community Committee in January 2018.

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Categories: Dorset

Six facts about litter enforcement

Thu, 11/09/2017 - 19:03
  • Weymouth is cleaner and pleasanter since Fixed Penalty Notices were introduced for people who throw rubbish onto our streets.

 

  • A total of 516 notices were issued between March and September 2017. A total of 472 for littering and 34 for dogs off lead, in prohibited areas or fouling.

 

  • Men have received more Fixed Penalty Notices than women. In the first six months men have received 287, compared to 244 for women.

 

  • Penalties aren’t popular with those who receive them, but less than 10 complaints were made to the borough council during this period.

 

  • Councillors decided to introduce the scheme.. It is a 12 month pilot project and councillors could decide to make it permanent.

 

  • The Enforcement Officers are trained and employed by 3GS, a specialist environmental enforcement company. It is a 12 month pilot project and councillors could decide to make it permanent. They carry identification, they do not carry or accept cash, notices are paid online or on the phone.

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Categories: Dorset

Officers go to the aid of collapsed man

Thu, 11/09/2017 - 13:19

A man who had collapsed was helped by environmental enforcement officers.

The incident happened near Weymouth Pavilion last week (2/11), when the man who was suffering from a Hypoglycaemic event (a potentially life threating diabetic episode), was discovered by Roger Anthony , who was on duty as a 3GS specialist environmental enforcement officer.

Roger gave him an initial sugar boost and summoned his colleague Jake Brewer. Jake, who is a trained event medic and community first responder, administered glucose tablets. He said: “My colleague found him and got him an initial sugar boost. I then arrived and administered glucose tablets. I then carried out a set of observations until the ambulance arrived.

“I am very glad when my first aid training can be put to good use to help people. I have left the ambulance service now, but remain a Community First Responder and I’m also an event medic with White Horse Safety in Weymouth.”

Cllr Ray Nowak, Briefholder for Environment and Sustainability, said: “I would like to thank this officer for his presence of mind, it was lucky they were passing and able to go to this gentleman’s aid.”

Jake and Roger work for specialist environmental enforcement company 3GS, who are responsible for issuing fixed penalty notices to anyone who throws rubbish onto our streets.

Man was helped near pavilion.

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Categories: Dorset

Roundabout landscaping starts

Wed, 11/08/2017 - 16:21

Landscaping work on the Weymouth Relief Road roundabouts will start next week.

Work will start on Monday 13 November at the Harriers’ Roundabout by the park and ride and move along the route over the next three weeks to cover all five roundabouts.

Wildflowers at Broomhills Household Recycling Centre

Landscaping work will be carried out off-peak – working 9am to 4.30pm at Harrier’s Roundabout and 9am to 3pm at the four other roundabouts – with lanes approaching the roundabout narrowed and the inside lane of the roundabout closed to give a safe working space.

Over the last few months, the verges along the relief road have been degraded ready for wildflower seeding as part of a project to reduce ongoing verge maintenance costs – and that work is now moving onto the five roundabouts.

Littlemoor, Jurassic, Veasta, Harriers’ and Manor roundabouts will all have the outer ring of existing grass replaced with a shingle border of one to one-and-a-half metres, which will save the need to strim around the signs regularly. The area behind the shingle will then be treated to create an attractive ‘flowering meadow’, with the existing trees and shrubs in the middle remaining.

Councillor Daryl Turner, Cabinet member for the natural and built environment, said: “These landscaping changes will still ensure that, come summer, the relief road verges and roundabouts are an attractive and welcoming sight for visitors.

“At the same time, these changes will reduce our maintenance costs while creating a more biodiverse habitat for insects.”

Dr Phil Sterling, coast and countryside service manager, said: “From 2019 onwards there is currently no money specifically allocated to manage the verges and roundabouts of the relief road, so we’re working hard now to design out ongoing maintenance costs as much as we can. We believe we can reduce the overall cost of £60,000 per year to under £30,000 per year in future, which is a significant saving.”

The work on the roundabouts will cost around £14,000 – paid by the council’s transformation fund – and this will save an ongoing sum of £1,200 a year currently spent on strimming and grass cutting.

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Categories: Dorset

Christchurch to hold Full Council meeting to discuss Referendum

Wed, 11/08/2017 - 16:05

referendum 

Christchurch Borough Council is to hold an extraordinary Full Council meeting on 16 November to discuss the referendum around local government reorganisation in Dorset.

In March members approved holding a postal referendum to get the thoughts on whether or not residents would support joining a new unitary authority with Bournemouth, Poole and Christchurch. However, the referendum was deferred as a decision on the Future Dorset proposal was delayed due to a number of reasons, including the General Election.

Following the announcement by the Secretary of State, the Rt. Hon. Sajid Javid MP, that he is ‘minded to’ support the Future Dorset submission, members will now meet to confirm the running of the referendum. If they vote to proceed they will also need to finalise the referendum paper and supporting document.

Cllr David Flagg, Leader of the Council, Christchurch Borough Council, said: “Before making any representations to the Secretary of State about the possible reorganisation of local government in Dorset councillors want to allow Christchurch residents to have their say. It is important we take into account their wishes as we are elected to represent them.”

The referendum will be a postal ballot and residents will have two weeks to return their ballot papers. Papers will be sent to all residents registered to vote by 1 September 2017 on either 1 or 8 December with a return date of 14 or 21 December. These dates will be finalised at Full Council.

A further extraordinary council meeting will be held to finalise Christchurch Borough Council’s representation to the Secretary of State once the results of the referendum are announced.

 

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Categories: Dorset

Save Herbert’s Weymouth

Wed, 11/08/2017 - 09:12

Weymouth based photographer Graham Herbert documented all types of Dorset life from 1950s to early 1980s.

The collection, of over 7,000 packets of photographic negatives, is a unique record of the social history of the area. Herbert captured many aspects of local life, including festivals and performances; shop displays and interiors; street scenes and every-day occurrences; and agricultural and industrial work.

The negatives are suffering from ‘vinegar syndrome’. This happens when the negatives begin to decay and give off an acidic vapour that smells much like vinegar. To try and slow the pace of the decay the negatives are now being stored in climate controlled strong rooms at the Dorset History Centre. There is no treatment as yet that can reverse or stop this condition and without intervention to digitise the collection, it will be lost.

Dorset Archives Trust, the charitable trust that supports the work of the History Centre, is launching a crowdfunder campaign to raise £8,000 to digitise the photos before they decay. The fundraiser starts today (8 November) at 10am.

Some of the images have already been digitised and have been used with great success in outreach activities with older people and with groups of adults with learning disabilities.

Cllr Clare Sutton, local member for Rodwell, said:

“These fantastic photos provide a fascinating window into our town’s past and it would be extremely sad to lose them. I very much hope they can be preserved for future generations and would encourage those who can afford to do so to give a little to the Dorset Archives Trust to help this happen.”

Alongside straight donations there are also ‘rewards’ on offer that range from a set of four postcards featuring already digitised images to a VIP tour of the Dorset History Centre with the County Archivist.

Pledge your support on crowdfunder or make a donation by post to the Dorset History Centre labelled Save Herbert’s Weymouth. Cheques should be made payable to Dorset Archives Trust.

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Categories: Dorset

Good causes receive car boot sale cash

Tue, 11/07/2017 - 17:26

More than £27,000 has been given to community organisations in the Dorchester area.

Pre-school clubs, sports clubs, youth projects and projects for people with disabilities or long term health related issues are among those that have benefitted from the funding.

West Dorset District Council collected the income from people who hired pitches at the weekly car boot sales held on Sunday mornings in Fairfield Car Park in Dorchester. All the income collected is paid into the Dorchester Market Car Boot Fund, which helps local community organisations.

Successful organisation were invited to a celebration tea at the Town Hall in Dorchester to receive certificates handed out by Councillor Mary Penfold, Chairman of the Dorchester Markets Car Boot Fund and Councillor Tim Harries, Deputy Mayor of Dorchester Town Council.

Community organisations in the Dorchester area were invited to apply for the funds earlier this year. A panel of town and district councillors awarded the grants from the many applications received.

Successful organisations included the Volunteer Centre Dorset; who were awarded £1,000 to support the Volunteer Help Scheme, which carries out household tasks for older people or people with health issues with tasks such as gardening and furniture removal. Kushti Bok – a Gypsy & Traveller led organisation received £250 to organise a Memorial Day to remember the Gypsy Holocaust, the first service to take place outside London. Dorset County Association of Church Bell Ringers received £800 to develop a training programme to encourage people to take up bell ringing.

Other organisations who also benefitted from the funding include: Age UK Dorchester (£500), Charlton Down Cricket Club (£780), Charminster Pre-School (£397.85), Chesil Sailability (£450), Cruse Bereavement Care Dorset Area (£600), Domestic Abuse Welfare Committee (£750), Dorchester & District Amateur Boxing Club (£620), Dorchester Arts (£375), Dorchester Ballet and Dance Club (£92.86), Dorchester Choral Society (£300), Dorchester Community Nursery School (£406.80), Dorchester Community Plays Association (£1000), Dorchester Disabled Club (£800), Dorchester Men’s Shed (£150), Dorchester Opportunity Group (£500), Dorchester Social Stroke Club (£500), Dorchester Strollers (£200), Dorchester Youth and Community Centre (£1000), Dorchester Youth Extra (£910), Dorchester, Sherborne & District CAB (£2000), Dorset Advocacy (£90), Dorset Blind Association (£500), Dorset County Association of Church Bell Ringers (£800), Dorset Race Equality Council (£500), Fizzy Boppers (£500), Friends of Dorchester West Station (£200), Home-Start West Dorset (£1000), Kushti Bok (£250), Little Giants Pre-School (£500), Martinstown Cricket Club (£500), Piddlehinton United Football Club (£250), Relate Dorset & South Wiltshire (£1000), Royal Voluntary Service (£500), Screenplay (£2500), South West Dorset Multicultural Network (£650), South West Dorset Multiple Sclerosis Society (£100), Stratton Youth Club (£1000), The Grove Pre-School (£500), Try This … Dorchester (£1000), Volunteer Centre Dorset (£1000), Weldmar Hospicecare (£150.10) and Women’s Action Network Dorset (£1000).

The grant programme is now closed but will be open again for applications in January 2018.

More information about the fund is available at https://www.dorsetforyou.gov.uk/dorchestergrants

Good causes receive grants

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Categories: Dorset

Good causes in the Bridport area receive car boot sale funds

Tue, 11/07/2017 - 17:15

A total of £12,800 has been awarded to community and voluntary organisations in the Bridport area.

Support groups, youth activities and groups for people with disabilities were among those that benefitted from the car boot fund.

West Dorset District Council collected the income from people who hired pitches at the weekly car boot sale held in West Bay. All income collected goes directly to the Bridport Area Car Boot Fund, which benefits local community and voluntary organisations.

Successful organisations were invited to a celebration tea at the Salt House in West Bay to receive certificates handed out by the chair of the panel Councillor Keith Day.

Local community organisations in the Bridport area were invited to apply for the funds earlier this year. A panel of district councillors awarded the grants from the many applications received.

Organisations that were allocated grants include Chideock Village Hall who received £1,000 to carry out essential health and safety works, Bride Valley Scout Group who received £300 to purchase tents for hiking and camping expeditions. Read Easy- Bridport also received £300 to purchase teaching aids which will guide learners through a course of reading and writing.

Other groups that benefitted included 1st Charmouth Guides (£200), 1st Charmouth Scout Group (£450), Axe Valley & West Dorset Ring & Ride Services (£500), Bradpole Preschool (£380),  Bride Valley Scout Group (£300), Bridport Area Development Trust (£200), Bridport Community Orchard Group (£300), Bridport Deaf Club (£1000), Bridport Gateway Club/West Dorset Mencap (£100), Bridport Gig Club (£300), Bridport Millennium Green Trust (£500), Bridport Tennis Club (£500), Chancery House Day Centre (£500), Chideock Village Hall (£1000), Citizens Advice Bridport & District (£450), Dorset Blind Association (£500), Home-Start West Dorset (£1000), Loders Youth Club (£850), Pathways To Care (£200), Read Easy Bridport (£300), St Andrews Pre-School (£500), The Allington Hill, Cooper’s Wood and Field Community Group (£500), The Bridport Young Performers Scholarship (£360), The Friendly Food Club (£300), The Living Tree (£500), The Pilsdon Community (£210) and Transition Town Bridport (£300).

The grant programme is now closed but will be open again for applications in January 2018. More information about the fund is available. 

Bridport groups receive grants

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Categories: Dorset

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