Cornwall

Raid shows it’s Stoptober for illegal tobacco traders

Cornwall Council News feed - Mon, 10/22/2018 - 15:51

It’s Stoptober for illegal traders too, after Cornwall Council Trading Standards officers swooped on a home in Bodmin and seized a number of suspected counterfeit cigarettes alongside pouches of suspected illegal tobacco.

The raid, which also involved customs officers, took place on Thursday 18 October, as part of the Council’s ongoing fight to get illegal goods off the streets.

Cabinet portfolio holder for Environment and Public Protection Sue James, said: “People who sell cheap tobacco will sell to anyone including children at pocket money prices. We’ve received reports of sales to children as young as eight in Cornwall.

“It’s no small irony that this has occurred as people across Cornwall are being asked to give up cigarettes for good as part of the national Stoptober campaign. Access to cheap tobacco makes it too easy for our young people to smoke and develop a lifelong addiction to nicotine.

“Illegal tobacco costs hospitals and schools £2.5 billion a year nationally in lost revenue, on top of the extra burden that smokers place on the NHS through preventable illness.

“Since 1 April, Cornwall Council’s Trading Standards have seized tobacco products which will save over two and a half years of life, highlighting why this work is so important in not only tackling illegal activity, but also in supporting a healthy Cornwall.”

People caught selling tobacco to under 18s can be fined up to £2500. Those involved in the supply of illegal tobacco can be sent to prison for up to 10 years and face an unlimited fine. HMRC may also impose further penalties and reclaim the lost revenue, and action can be taken to recover the proceeds of crime.

Investigations following the raid in Bodmin this week are ongoing. If you have any information that you would like to pass on concerning illegal tobacco sales in your area please call Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111. You do not need to give your name.

Categories: Cornwall

Cornwall one of the best in the country at helping people live longer in their homes

Cornwall Council News feed - Mon, 10/22/2018 - 10:40

People in Cornwall who need help staying in their own homes to avoid moving into residential care receive one of the best services in country, according to an independent report.

The charity, the Centre for Ageing Better praised Cornwall Council’s Cornwall Home Solutions service in its ‘Adapting for Ageing’ report as one of the ‘best examples of English Councils supporting people to live safely and independently at home’.

Cornwall Home Solutions supports people through stressful life-changing situations, providing tailored help from practical adaptations to their existing home layout and sourcing special equipment, to providing financial advice and, in some cases, assistance with moving home.

The project is a key part of Cornwall Council’s work to support more people to stay in their own homes rather than live in residential care, reducing demand on already overstretched council services.

Ian Searle, an 83 year old from Truro, was struggling to manage in his home due to his visual impairment. He was supported to move into a ground floor flat in an area that allowed him improved access to public transport. He has since gone on to help other people experiencing similar problems.

He said: “The help I received has transformed my life. I am now a Silverlinks Volunteer and I talk to people on the phone offering advice to people making important decisions about where they live and getting adaptations fitted”.Cabinet portfolio holder for Adults Rob Rotchell said: “This service is a great example of how we are supporting older people to live indepe

ndently and therefore reducing the number of people who need ongoing and long term support from adult social care. 

“By investing in services such as these we can help to reduce the long term demand and at the same time support people to live the lives they want to lead, at home near their family and friends.”

Last year the service supported:

  • 890 disabled people to have major adaptations to their homes such as level access showers, stairlifts and ramping
  • 52 disabled people to move to a more appropriate home
  • 1,720 vulnerable people to have minor works through the ‘Handyperson’ service

Of the customers who received these services 96% of them rated them as either ‘excellent’ or ‘good’.

Categories: Cornwall

Animal cruelty offences lead to suspended jail sentence for Par builder

Cornwall Council News feed - Fri, 10/19/2018 - 14:49

A builder from Par has been given a suspended jail sentence and ordered to pay £4,500 after animal health inspectors from Cornwall Council found a herd of more than 500 sheep living in appalling conditions near Fowey.

Kenneth White, 51 of Penarwyn Woods, Par has also been banned from keeping farm animals after pleading guilty to six offences relating to the discovery at Valley View Farm in Lanteglos Highway in February this year.

District Judge Diana Baker, sitting at Bodmin Magistrates Court heard that with no previous experience of sheep husbandry, Mr White had taken on the herd, with devastating consequences. During a visit to the farm, Council inspectors found lambs had drowned in mud or died of exposure, over half the herd was underweight and 12 animals needed veterinary treatment.

Judge Baker sentenced Mr White to 16 weeks in custody, suspended for 12 months, disqualified him from the custody of farm animals for 10 years and ordered him to pay the Council's costs of £4,500 and a victim surcharge of £115.

While the case was heard on 9 August 2018, reporting restrictions on the case were lifted this week after a linked prosecution case was withdrawn.

Stuart Benson, head of business standards and registration, said: “More than 500 sheep had been left outdoors during the worst winter in living memory and while Mr White had sheep housing available he didn’t use it.

"By lambing outdoors in mid-winter, with no concentrate feed and no competent stockman, Mr White caused these animals significant suffering."

Sue James, Cabinet portfolio holder for environment and public protection, said: “This is a truly shocking crime demonstrating a complete disregard for farm animal welfare. Where Council officers uncover cases of such cruelty we will use all the legal options available to us to bring perpetrators to justice."

Mr White pleaded guilty to:

  • Failing to dispose of seven sheep carcasses on 9 February 2018
  • Failing to dispose of 10 sheep carcasses on 13 February 2018
  • Causing unnecessary suffering to two sheep on 9 February 2018 by failing to provide appropriate care and treatment
  • Causing unnecessary suffering to nine sheep between 9 February 2018 and 13 February 2018 by failing to provide appropriate care and treatment
  • On 13 February 2018 failing in his duty of care to sheep by failing to prevent four lambs from suffering from hypothermia
  • On 13 February 2018 failing in his duty of care to sheep by failing to provide a dry lying area
Categories: Cornwall

Gerrans Parish Council takes over local car park and play area

Cornwall Council News feed - Fri, 10/19/2018 - 12:51

Exciting plans to preserve and improve the Gerrans Parish on The Roseland have been finalised between Gerrans Parish and Cornwall Councils.

The freeholds of Treloan Lane Car Park and the children’s playground also in Treloan Lane, Gerrans have been devolved to Gerrans Parish Council from Cornwall Council. Both will continue to be managed and maintained by the Parish Council.

The handover is part of Cornwall Council’s commitment to devolution. Devolving property and services currently held by Cornwall Council gives local communities the opportunity to shape their areas, make the improvements that sometimes only local knowledge can provide and respond to demand.

Mrs Charlotte Taffinder, Chair of Gerrans Parish Council, said: “The Parish Council welcomes the transfers of the two freeholds and looks forward to working with the local community to improve these two facilities going forward.”

Councillor for the Roseland and Deputy Leader of Cornwall Council, Julian German said: “The play area and car parks in the Parish are much-used by villagers and visitors alike. Gerrans Parish Council working together with the Council has added real value to the community and I believe this new step will have a positive effect on the community for many years to come.”

Edwina Hannaford, Cabinet Member for Neighbourhoods said: “It’s so important that people feel connected to the place where they live, and the Parish Council’s involvement in running this much-used car park and playground is exactly what is needed. We recognise that communities have high ambitions to be in control of services in their area. That’s the essence of this double devolution, which ensures the continuation of a local management approach.”

Categories: Cornwall

Free festival to celebrate roles in the care profession

Cornwall Council News feed - Fri, 10/19/2018 - 11:57

The countdown is on to Wednesday 24 October when Truro’s Lemon Quay will be taken over from 10am to 4pm by a group of amazing people. Care providers and care workers from across Cornwall join with some of those whose lives have been transformed by the care they have received to show why they are all Proud to Care.

The Proud to Care festival is about celebrating the exciting and inspiring work which is being done by social care providers and health organisations, to share the stories of the people they care for and encourage more people to consider a career in Cornwall’s care sector.

The whole day has been designed to be interactive, with all those taking part determined to show the difference the right kind of care can make to people’s lives and challenge some of the myths which are putting people off joining the care profession. As well as demonstrations of equipment and technology, there will be lots of opportunities to talk with people currently working in health and care.

Everyone is invited to attend with a wide range of fun attractions on offer for all age groups, including face painting, a magician, music, singing and dancing. There will be free food prepared by volunteers from Café Chaos and local businesses have donated raffle prizes.

An ageing population is already placing huge demands on over-stretched social care services, demands that are set to increase over the coming decades.

To find ways to meet this demand and attract more people into care roles, social care providers have joined forces with Cornwall Council, the voluntary and community sector, local education institutions and health organisations, including Royal Cornwall Hospital, under the banner of Proud to Care Cornwall. The Proud to Care initiative covers the whole of the South West and aims to improve the public’s views of the care sector and help more people build a rewarding career in care.

The event will be officially opened at 10am by Rob Rotchell, Cornwall Council’s Cabinet Member for Adults, and Lindsay Southcombe, the Mayor of Truro.

Cornwall Council Cabinet Portfolio Holder for Adults Rob Rotchell said:

“Care workers provide an essential service to the community and to those who need care. 

“We expect there will be an extra 30,000 new care jobs needed in the South West by 2025 to meet the needs of the growing and ageing population – this is a role which is going to be needed in every community across Cornwall.

“Alongside making sure we have sufficient carers, we also need to find different ways to deliver social care services such as making use of developments in technology and ensuring people have information on ageing well so they need less support.

“This festival aims to bring all this together in a fun, interactive day.”

One of the ways Cornwall Council is helping make caring roles more attractive is by requiring care providers with new contracts to pay their staff a minimum of £8.75 an hour in accordance with the foundation living wage. The Council has also signed the Ethical Care Charter, which improves conditions for frontline carers.

The festival is made possible with the help of Pluss through their Big Lottery and ESF funded ‘Positive People’ programme who, together with Cornwall Council, are the main event sponsors.

Chief Executive of Pluss, Steve Hawkins said: “There has never been a better time to join the care sector with a range of rewarding roles with great career prospects available.

“Our Positive People programme provides support to people across the region to build up their confidence and access activities in their communities. Some of our participants will have both experienced and provided care at some point in their lives so it is very important that we support more people into the care profession.”

Story posted 19 October 2018

Categories: Cornwall

Cornwall Council and partners support National Child Sexual Exploitation Awareness Day

Cornwall Council News feed - Thu, 10/18/2018 - 14:38

Sunday 18 March is Child Sexual Exploitation Awareness Day.

Sue James, Cornwall Council Cabinet Member for Environment and Public Protection said:  “We are committed to protecting children from harm. We have all seen how child sexual exploitation can damage lives and we are working with our partners to provide the best possible response.  We work closely together and want the community to feel confident that they can share concerns and we want children and young people to know that we will listen.”

Child Sexual Exploitation (CSE) is a form of sexual abuse that involves the manipulation or coercion of young people into sexual activity and there have been many harrowing stories where children have been targeted and groomed online.

Alongside our Safeguarding Children Partnership, Safer Cornwall and Safeguarding Adults Board and with partners across the Peninsula including Devon and Cornwall Police and Torbay and Devon Safeguarding Children Boards, we are promoting awareness of Child Sexual Exploitation (CSE) and encouraging everyone to think, spot and speak out against abuse.

Cornwall Council Cabinet Member for children and wellbeing Sally Hawken said: “Parents, carers, relatives, friends, neighbours, members of the public and professionals all have a role to play. We’re supporting the national campaign on 18 March which aims to raise awareness and we encourage people to report any concerns.

The Awareness Day aims to highlight this form of abuse and encourage everyone to adopt a zero tolerance to adults developing inappropriate relationships with children or children developing inappropriate relationships with other children.

John Clements Independent Chair of the Cornwall and Isle of Scilly Local Safeguarding Board said: “Sadly it’s no surprise that children may be at risk from online grooming so by raising awareness, this campaign encourages parents to feel better educated and equipped around online use, and for children and young people to spot signs of grooming and know where to go for help and support.“

The partners are taking part in a national social media campaign and encouraging people from their organisations and beyond to support the Twitter Thunderclap on 18 March and write a personal pledge on their hands to show support for the Helping Hands campaign.

Post your photo on social media with the hashtag #HelpingHands and #CSEDay18 to help raise awareness of CSE.

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Story posted 16 March 2018

Categories: Cornwall

Gerrans Parish Council to take over local car park and play area

Cornwall Council News feed - Thu, 10/18/2018 - 14:18

Exciting plans to preserve and improve the Gerrans Parish on The Roseland have been finalised between Gerrans Parish and Cornwall Councils.

The freeholds of Treloan Lane Car Park and the children’s playground also in Treloan Lane, Gerrans have been devolved to Gerrans Parish Council from Cornwall Council. Both will continue to be managed and maintained by the Parish Council.

The handover is part of Cornwall Council’s commitment to devolution. Devolving property and services currently held by Cornwall Council gives local communities the opportunity to shape their areas, make the improvements that sometimes only local knowledge can provide and respond to demand.

Mrs Charlotte Taffinder, Chair of Gerrans Parish Council, said: “The Parish Council welcomes the transfers of the two freeholds and looks forward to working with the local community to improve these two facilities going forward.”

Councillor for the Roseland and Deputy Leader of Cornwall Council, Julian German said: “The play area and car parks in the Parish are much-used by villagers and visitors alike. Gerrans Parish Council working together with the Council has added real value to the community and I believe this new step will have a positive effect on the community for many years to come.”

Edwina Hannaford, Cabinet Member for Neighbourhoods said: “It’s so important that people feel connected to the place where they live, and the Parish Council’s involvement in running this much-used car park and playground is exactly what is needed. We recognise that communities have high ambitions to be in control of services in their area. That’s the essence of this double devolution, which ensures the continuation of a local management approach.”

Categories: Cornwall

Final call for household enquiry forms – protect your vote

Cornwall Council News feed - Thu, 10/18/2018 - 10:24

Council today issued a reminder to residents across Cornwall to complete their household enquiry form if they haven’t already done so.

The information keeps the electoral register up-to-date. This ensures residents are entitled to vote, credit reference agencies have the correct data for credit checking and the courts for jury service summoning. 

A final call for all residents to complete and return their household enquiry form (HEF) is taking place with local canvassers door knocking across Cornwall.

Residents are being asked to respond as soon as possible online, by telephone or by text regardless of whether there have been any changes in their household. 

The Council has already received more than 235,000 forms but is still waiting for replies from over 30,000 properties.

Completing the form is a legal requirement and failure to respond can incur a fine of up to £1000.

Cornwall Council Leader Adam Paynter said: “It’s not junk mail - it’s really important you don’t ignore this form as by law you must respond to it. In the worst case you could face a £1000 fine if you don’t. It only takes a few minutes to fill out.”

What is a Household Enquiry Form?

The Household Enquiry Form (HEF) is posted to your letterbox by Cornwall Council between July and November each year.

Make sure you respond on time, even if the information is correct.

Every home in the UK must respond, so that their Council can make sure their data is up-to-date.

The letter lists all those living in the property that are currently registered to vote and asks you to check and update the details.

It also gives you details on how you can respond - anyone in the household can complete and send the form back.

If there are changes to your household - for example, someone has moved out or you have recently moved in - you will need to let the Council know.

You can do this by making the changes online or filling out the form following the instructions in the letter, but please respond online if you can as that helps keep down the cost to the taxpayer.

If you cannot do it online, then complete and return the form in the pre-paid envelope provided by the Council.

If there are no changes and all the details on the form are correct - you can simply follow the instructions in the letter to respond.

You can find out more information at /council-and-democracy/elections/annual-voter-registration-2018/

Posted on 18 October 2018

Categories: Cornwall

National campaign urges people to try just one thing online

Cornwall Council News feed - Wed, 10/17/2018 - 15:36

Get Online Week is once again helping Cornwall’s residents learn that getting the most out of the internet can be easy and fun. 

The national campaign, run by Cornwall Council locally, is being hosted in libraries and community venues around the county to give everyone the chance to make the most of the internet, no matter how confident they are online.

Throughout this week (15-21 October), Get Online Week 2018 is focused on helping people try just one thing online that they may usually do elsewhere.

Adam Paynter, Leader of Cornwall Council, said: “More people than you probably think still don’t use the internet at all, and we’re here to help. But even if you do know how to send the odd email, use Facebook or read the news on your phone, you could still be missing out on so much more.

“From banking, to online shopping to applying for jobs and knowing when to put your bins out, getting online will improve your access to the world. Making the most out of the internet doesn’t have to be scary. Doing just one new thing online is all you need to do to get started, so come along to our events and we can help you do just that.”

A host of Get Online Week events are being held at locations throughout Cornwall where there will be friendly support for anyone who wants to start doing more online - and it’s absolutely free.

People can call 01872 272702 to find out more, or just pop in to a local library and see what’s happening.

Staff from Cornwall Council help and support people of any age to get online for the first time throughout the year. Beginner sessions are held in libraries or community venues up and down the county. All sessions are free of charge.

Posted on 17 October 2018

Categories: Cornwall

Residents urged to have their say on plans for the growth of Cornwall’s towns

Cornwall Council News feed - Mon, 10/15/2018 - 14:28

Residents only have a few days left to submit their comments to Cornwall Council on where new housing and commercial development could be located within some of Cornwall’s largest towns.

The consultation deadline to have your say on the Cornwall Site Allocations Development Plan is 5pm on 22 October 2018.

The plan covers two eco-communities at West Carclaze, near St Austell and Par Docks and these 10 areas:

  • Penzance and  Newlyn
  • Hayle
  • Camborne-Pool-Illogan-Redruth
  • Helston
  • Falmouth and Penryn
  • St Austell
  • Newquay
  • Bodmin
  • Launceston
  • Saltash

The Cornwall Site Allocations Development Plan is currently undergoing an examination in public, led by central government’s independent Planning Inspectorate, which considers whether the document is fit for purpose and if the Council can adopt it as planning policy and use it to determine planning applications.

As part of this on-going examination process, various modifications to the plan have been proposed which are now subject to this consultation.

Cornwall Council cabinet portfolio holder for economy and planning Bob Egerton said: “The plan represents our opportunity to take a proactive approach to the future growth and regeneration of our communities. We want to ensure as many residents as possible respond to this consultation as their feedback will help to shape the future of their community.”

“This could represent the final opportunity for residents to be able to influence a document that is setting the strategy for the growth of many of our larger towns, so I would urge people to get involved and have their say.”

You can get involved by accessing the consultation documents online. The Cornwall Site Allocations Development Plan is also in the libraries and information centres within the towns covered by the document. 

 

Story posted 15 October 2018

Categories: Cornwall

Rogue traders and doorstep sellers across the country targeted in a UK wide week of action

Cornwall Council News feed - Fri, 10/12/2018 - 16:02

Members of Cornwall Council’s Trading Standards team have spent the past week targeting rogue traders in attempt to disrupt their activities and promote awareness of the financial harm and misery they can bring.

It is the 13th year in a row that the team have joined forces with other agencies to help raise awareness of the issue through a co-ordinated UK-wide operation.

Led by Cornwall Trading Standards with assistance from Devon and Cornwall Police, officers conducted mobile patrols targeting suspects  who were known to be operating in the county, as well as conducting residential patrols in areas frequently targeted by rogue traders. 

This type of crime is a UK wide problem and evidence suggests that rogue traders share information to repeatedly target some of our most vulnerable residents.

They will often travel large distances to commit offences and in some cases are known to employ slave labour to carry out the work, highlighting the need for a shared approach nationally within Trading Standards and the Police.

Leanne McLean, lead officer for doorstep crime said, “Rogue traders prey on the most vulnerable in society, conning them out of vast sums of money, for unnecessary and overpriced work. When someone falls foul of a rogue trading scam, research shows that it has a significant  detrimental effect on the victim’s health and their confidence. 

Operation Rogue Trader aims to catch offenders and disrupt their activity as well as highlighting the dangers of rogue trading and doorstep crime. As you can imagine, those involved in this form of illegal activity do not tend to be law abiding citizens in other aspects of their life. By working with Devon and Cornwall Police, we can  help educate the public, gather valuable intelligence and disrupt their criminal activity. The aim is to rid rogue traders from our streets and make Cornwall’s communities safer.”

Councillor Sue James said, “Our Trading Standards team continue to combat the crimes associated with cold calling home maintenance traders and professional doorstep fraudsters. Cornwall Council will take robust enforcement in these cases, to provide a meaningful sanction and deterrent.

“Where possible, we will seek to recover the criminal proceeds in order to refund the victims. Working closely with partners in the Police and Adult Social Care, Trading Standards ensures those at risk of victimisation and exploitation are safeguarded and that those responsible for the crimes are brought to justice. 

“Operation Rogue Trader is a key part of the strategy to proactively tackle this type of crime, and intelligence sharing and joint initiatives between Trading Standards and the Police will ensure that there are no hiding places for the criminals.”

Activities during the week ranged from training the Royal Mail sorting office in St Austell on how to identify postal scams, to identifying vehicles used by criminals through automatic number plate recognition (ANPR) and conducting intelligence-led patrols in areas where older or vulnerable people live.

The team also acted on real time intelligence from the Police, Trading Standards Officers and consumers; as well as conducting a joint mobile patrol with Devon and Cornwall Police teams. Over 250 residents were advised on how to keep themselves safe at home from rogue traders and over 400 leaflets distributed, including our Buy With Confidence ‘Trading Standards Approved’ directory  of approved traders.

It is not illegal for traders to sell at the door and legitimate callers will not mind if you shut and lock the door while you verify that they are genuine. Rogue traders often offer gardening work or maintenance services at attractive rates but the quality of work is substandard, unnecessary or overpriced. They often use persuasive sales techniques to encourage people into making hasty decisions.

The message from Trading Standards is a simple one – genuine traders DO NOT call door to door without an appointment. If you aren’t sure who they are, don’t open the door.

People should report cases of rogue traders or uninvited doorstep callers to the Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 0345 04 05 06.

Posted 12 October 2018

Categories: Cornwall

Event shows how robots could support the future of care in Cornwall

Cornwall Council News feed - Fri, 10/12/2018 - 14:41

Virtual reality and mobile apps are just some of the technology already being used to help people age well.    

Hundreds of social care experts, including those from Cornwall Council, came together at Technology Enabled Care event hosted by Cornwall Council and the Shaping Our Future programme held at New County Hall in Truro, on 9 October 2018.

The aim of the event was to explore how technology can support people to live independently and safely in their own homes for longer, helping to relieve pressure on already overstretched adult social care services during a period of dramatically reduced funding from central government.

They have been working closely with EPIC which is a three year project part funded by the European Regional Development Fund and the South West Academic Health Science Network, and led by the University of Plymouth. EPIC brought along a number of robotics to exhibit at the event such as robots that can provide companionship, prompt people to take medication and provide comfort to relieve anxiety.

One person who has benefitted from the use of technology enabled care is Mandy Moses from Penryn. She has been using a programme supplied by the company iCareiMove to access support through her laptop. This allows her to watch and follow a set of exercises tailored to her needs.

Mandy said: “Being able to use technology in this way has transformed my life. Before I started, I was unable to leave my house but by doing the exercises I’m now able to go out and see my friends and family. It has made a huge difference to my life.”

Cornwall Council Cabinet Member for Adults Rob Rotchell said: “As a council, we must find different and more cost effective ways to provide people with the support they need to live independent, healthy and happy lives. This is to ensure we continue provide high quality service amid a tough financial climate which has seen council funding slashed by central government.

“Technology enabled care is part of the solution and has been proven to reduce a person’s dependence on costly care packages while improving their quality of life. It is heartening to see how it has helped Mandy achieve her independence.”

Cornwall Council is testing a variety of technology in social care environments, including the use of trackers to help people who live with dementia and the people who care for them.

Marathon runner Simon Wheatcroft, who is visually impaired, was guest speaker at the Technology Enabled Care Event. He spoke about how he has cleverly used technology to support him compete in marathons across the world. His inspiring story helped those who attended to think more widely about how technology can be used to support people they work with.

Watch Mandy and Pat talk about iCareiMove

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=13XGJhcSkGA

Posted 12 October 2018

 

Categories: Cornwall

Childhood obesity rates in Cornwall improving

Cornwall Council News feed - Fri, 10/12/2018 - 13:30

The number of children in Cornwall who are overweight has dropped this year according to statistics released this week.

The data is taken from the National Child Measurement Programme (NCMP), which records the weight of children in reception year (aged 4-5 years) and year 6 (aged 10-11 years) in schools across the country. In some areas, children’s weight status is shared with their parents to help them understand their child’s growth and consider positive lifestyle changes.

The percentage of reception age children had been increasing year on year since school year 2011/12 but this year has seen a decrease of almost 2%. The data for 2017/18 shows a reduction in the percentage of children in reception year who are overweight from 16.7% in 2016/17 to 14.9%.

The downward trend of year 6 children who are overweight has continued, 14.5% in 2016/17 to 13% in 2017/18. The data also shows that Cornwall is below national average.

Cornwall Council is working on a number of initiatives working towards reducing the child obesity rates in Cornwall. The Sugar Smart survey earlier in the year showed that 98% of people wanted healthier options available when eating out and 83% were worried that sugar was impacting the family’s health.

The Healthy Schools programme is available to all schools with a number working towards a Healthy Schools award. This includes healthy approaches to food in schools, sugar smart status and increasing physical activity in line with the chief medical officer guidelines of 3 hours per day. Cornwall Council have therefore been encouraging schools to be involved with the Daily Mile initiative where children walk or run a mile every day, as healthy weight is a combination of eating well and being active.

Cornwall Council’s portfolio holder for Children and Wellbeing Sally Hawken said: “While the rates in Cornwall appear to be getting better, we know that there is still so much more to do to ensure our children are given the best possible start in life. Trend data still shows us that children are putting on weight during primary school. By the age of 10-11 years old there are nearly double the amount of children who are obese compared from when they start school.

“A healthy weight in childhood lays the foundations for decades of healthy life as an adult. This data underlines how important it is for families to talk about health and weight as part of everyday life.

“Each year, children leave primary school overweight or obese and our most deprived areas are the worst affected. It’s never too soon to make a change and there is lots of support from Cornwall Council and the national health campaign Change4Life to help.

“Sometimes it’s hard to make the right choice for a number of reasons and we recognise that access to good food and sports or activity is an additional cost that some families struggle to afford. That’s why organisations across Cornwall are working to make sure families can get help to reach a healthy weight.”

Any family who would like support can get in contact with the Healthy Cornwall Service by calling 01209 615600 or visiting the Healthy Cornwall Service website.

Story posted 12 October

Categories: Cornwall

Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly urges people to consider adoption

Cornwall Council News feed - Fri, 10/12/2018 - 11:35

On the eve of National Adoption Week (15-21 October), more people are being urged to consider adoption, with around 40 children a year in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly needing permanent homes.

Cornwall Council and the Council of the Isles of Scilly Adoption Agency say children who require adoptive parents could have suffered from abuse and neglect and need parents who can help them with their previous experiences by offering them acceptance, guidance and nurture.

Cornwall Council Cabinet portfolio holder for children and wellbeing, Sally Hawken, encouraged people who have considered adopting in the past to take the next step.

“Children deserve to have the best possible opportunities in life. Being adoptive parents can be challenging and rewarding in equal parts. The  Adoption Service, has  over the years has provided many children with a loving and secure family life and are on hand to provide support and guidance to anyone who is ready to take the next step and find out more.

“Adoption provides vulnerable children the love and security of family life. We encourage adopters from all walks of life, and backgrounds. You can be single, in a same sex relationship and any age. We need people who are able to emotionally meet the needs of a child and provide a loving and stable home, but who can also offer a child understanding and acceptance of their past history. 

Lisa and Max recently adopted two siblings through the Adoption Service. Lisa said while the route to adoption was long and intense, it was worth it.

“The process helps you prepare  emotionally and practically for your much-awaited for child or children.  Nothing can prepare you for the excitement of the day you get told you have been 'matched', and the magic only continues to grow from that point.  Our two little girls came to us neglected, emotionally and physically fragile and mistrusting of people and their surroundings.  It has been a sheer joy to watch them evolve and change… to see them learn to laugh and smile without inhibition and watch their demons melt away. 

“There is perhaps a misconception that a bond with an adopted child is not as strong as with birth children - this is not true.  The longing and yearning for a family that has been felt by both parents and children ensures a bond and love that is deep and ever growing. 

“We know we will never do anything again that will bring us such joy, happiness and unadulterated laughter as adopting our babies has.  We would urge anyone to consider adopting as so many children need a loving home, whatever the dynamic and make up of your family, you will undoubtedly have something to offer.  It is no cliché to say that adopted children are special.  They will make your house a home and make you a family.  A special family.” 

If you are interested in becoming an adoptive parent call 01872 322200 or visit www.adoptincornwall.co.uk.

Posted on 12 October 2018

Categories: Cornwall

Deadline for secondary school applications

Cornwall Council News feed - Thu, 10/11/2018 - 17:53

Time is running out for parents to apply for secondary school places for their children.

The application deadline for secondary places is 31 October. Cornwall Council is urging families to submit application forms by this date to give children the best possible chance of being placed at a preferred school.

Parents who miss the application deadline reduce their chances of getting one of their preferred schools because their forms will not be dealt with until after all the other applications have been processed.

Cornwall Council’s Education and Early Years Service is currently working hard with local schools and the Family Information Service to help guide all parents and carers through the application process. Their mission is to raise awareness and ensure that parents have information to hand to help them identify their preferred schools and apply before the deadline.

Cornwall Council’s portfolio holder for Children and Wellbeing, Sally Hawken said: “Deciding on a preferred secondary school can be a time of mixed emotions and getting the right information at the right time can really help parents during this next stage in their child’s education.

“A visit to the school is a good opportunity to meet teachers and pupils as well as helping to find out the answers to a wide range of practical questions from school uniform to the expectations around homework. If there is not enough time to make a visit, talking to parents whose children currently attend the school can also help and the school website can provide lots of useful information.”

“For those families who need extra help navigating the school admission process, the Council also offers impartial advice on which schools to list as preferences. This support is available to any parent or carer through a Choice Adviser and if you find yourself in a situation where you are finding it a challenge to complete the application, this service can really help.”

A Choice Adviser may be contacted through the Family Information Service (0800 587 8191 or at fis@cornwall.gov.uk).

Not submitting a school application by October 31 increases the risk of not being allocated a preferred school, because late applications will not be processed until after all those submitted on time. There will be some delay before a place can be allocated and it is possible that some schools will already be full.

Posted on 11 October

Categories: Cornwall

Early action to reduce homelessness

Cornwall Council News feed - Thu, 10/11/2018 - 17:06

A new referral system to help people facing homelessness has been introduced in Cornwall. 

Seventeen referrals for people threatened with homelessness or who are homeless have already been made thanks to the introduction of the ALERT referral system, run by Cornwall Council and Cornwall Housing.

The new system enables organisations like Jobcentre Plus, Social Services, youth offending teams, hospital accident and emergency services and probation services to easily refer people who are homeless, or who may find themselves threatened with becoming homeless.  Cornwall Housing will then make contact to provide the support they need.

The Homelessness Reduction Act introduced earlier this year includes a ‘Duty to Refer’ which kicked in on 01 October, although Cornwall Council introduced the ALERT referral system ahead of that deadline.

Cabinet portfolio holder for homes Andrew Mitchell says: “We are well prepared and were able to introduce this new system ahead of the ‘Duty to Refer’ deadline. Given Cornwall’s geography, we needed a system which is simple, easy and consistent so that other organisations, with the consent of the person involved, can let us know if someone is at risk.  We are committed to preventing homelessness.  We understand finding out that someone is at risk early increases opportunities to offer help and support before the situation gets even more desperate.”

Andrew adds: “The duty to refer must be more than simply a one-way referral into the Housing Options service. Rather, a wide range of public bodies need to co-operate and act on any opportunity or responsibility that they have to prevent homelessness and the causes of homelessness.”

The last official estimate on the number of rough sleepers in Cornwall suggest that co-ordinated action by Cornwall Council and partners to tackle the issue is beginning to see positive results.

Official estimates showed that 68 people were reported as rough sleeping in November 2017 compared to 99 reported the previous year – a 31% reduction.

Cornwall Council’s Cabinet portfolio holder for homes Andrew Mitchell said: “Ultimately, no one should be forced to sleep rough in Cornwall, or anywhere else for that matter.  We want to get as close to that goal as possible and we’re working to make that happen.  That’s why we have invested in prevention measures like the the ALERT system so that we can help people early and they don’t end up on the streets.”

Anyone who feels they are in danger of becoming homeless should contact Cornwall Housing as soon as possible.

The housing options service run by Cornwall Housing offers free advice and assistance for landlords, tenants and owner occupiers across Cornwall on a wide range of housing issues including:

  • Your options to find a home
  • Homelessness
  • Joining the Homechoice housing register

Online www.cornwall.gov.uk/housingoptions

By telephone Tel: 0300 1234 161

By email  info@cornwallhousing.org.uk

 

Story posted 11 October 2018

Categories: Cornwall

Parking charges

Cornwall Council News feed - Thu, 10/11/2018 - 14:01

Following recent reports about parking charges in Cornwall ahead of the Economic Growth and Development Overview and Scrutiny Committee on 16 October, Cornwall Council cabinet portfolio holder for transport Geoff Brown said: “I want to assure everyone that these are not proposed new charges but were simply produced to give the committee an indication of how fees might look if we were to introduce a zoning approach to car park charges.  At present there are 123 different charges in place across Cornwall.

Clearly there is work to do in looking at zoning fees and which zone might apply to specific car parks.

No fee changes could be made until a full public consultation has been carried out.”

 

Story posted 11 October 2018

Categories: Cornwall

This #HousingDay families with a local connection celebrate moving into Cornwall Council homes

Cornwall Council News feed - Wed, 10/10/2018 - 17:49

Families have moved into new homes in Dobwalls which have been bought by the Council as part of its commitment to provide 1,000 new homes.

Seven new homes at Penhale Close in Dobwalls have been bought by the Council from Wainhomes to add to Cornwall Housing’s stock of social housing.  They have been let to families with a connection to Dobwalls and the surrounding area.  All were registered on and applied through the Council’s Homechoice register. The homes are being managed by Cornwall Housing.

 

“Ecstatic is a good word. The family are really, really very happy with where we are going from here.  We can start to settle down”  says Craig Vince who, with his family, has moved into one of the new homes bought by the Council.

His wife Sharon adds: “We couldn’t believe it when we looked at the house.  It is so beautiful. We’re very excited.”

Emma Selby, who has also moved into one of the new homes with her young family, explains: “I was bidding on Cornwall Homechoice because my rent was too high where I was privately renting.  This house is much nicer and the area is nicer too with more children for mine to play with.”

Cornwall Council cabinet portfolio holder for homes Andrew Mitchell said:  “#HousingDay18 celebrates the positive impact of social housing on thousands of people across the UK. It’s heartening to hear first-hand how the Council’s commitment to providing quality homes for families in Cornwall is making a real difference to people’s lives.  This Council is committed to providing 1,000 good quality homes for local people and we will be doing that through a number of initiatives.  In this case, buying these homes in Dobwalls for social rent made sense and we have added them to our Housing Revenue Account which means they will be kept for social rent and allocated to people with a local connection.” 

The Council’s Housing Development Programme (HDP) will see the Council investing up to £200 million in directly building and providing new homes on sites across Cornwall. The developments will be a mix of homes for private market rent, affordable rent, shared ownership and private market ownership.

The first 113 homes to buy or rent, built on pilot sites in Tolvaddon and Bodmin, are set to be ready later this year. New sites in Newquay and Launceston are in the process of being purchased and these will be added to other housing development sites in Liskeard and Torpoint which the Council already owns.

Andrew Mitchell adds:  “Cornwall needs more homes – both to rent and to buy - for local people with a genuine housing need. For example, in Newquay there are more than 1,500 applicants on the Homechoice register who have stated Newquay as their first preference.  The proposed development in Newquay could provide up to 400 new homes which will go some way towards addressing that need.  This is about providing good quality homes that people want to live in, with space, gardens, parking and which are well designed with low energy costs.”

The new homes in Dobwalls are also some of the first to be provided by the Council, and indeed within Cornwall, that feature a full fire suppression system to help protect the safety of tenants.  The Council has committed to installing such systems in all homes it builds or purchases. Officers worked with the developer to ensure a high quality system was installed, which in this case works by spraying a fine mist in the room to quickly suppress any fire and giving occupants an opportunity to escape safely.

 

Story posted 10 October 2018

Categories: Cornwall

Aerohub Business Park Workspace Scheme Reaches Major Milestone

Cornwall Council News feed - Wed, 10/10/2018 - 13:42

Construction of Cornwall Council’s flagship development at the Aerohub Business Park at Cornwall Airport Newquay has marked a major milestone towards its completion with a topping out ceremony.

The development, part of Cornwall Council’s commitment to secure 38,000 new jobs on council land by 2030, is supported by £4.4m of investment from the European Regional Development Fund and £3.1m from the local authority. 

The topping out ceremony, which marks having reached the highest point of the new building, saw a sapling planted to signify the milestone. Representatives from the project team, Cornwall Council and the business community gathered to mark the event.

The development, which should be completed in early 2019, will provide 1,005m² of office space in addition to a further eight business/light industrial units totalling 1,904m².

It represents a landmark for the Aerohub Business Park at Cornwall Airport Newquay, from which Cornwall and Virgin Orbit will soon be launching satellites to space from the  UK’s first horizontal Spaceport by 2021. 

Cllr Bob Egerton, Cornwall Council Portfolio Holder for Planning and Economy, praised the strategic opportunity presented by the Plot 2 development  for businesses and the wider economy of Cornwall: “It offers businesses high-quality accommodation, in a strategic location close to Newquay, the A30, Cornwall Airport Newquay and the Council’s future Spaceport. It will act as a catalyst for investment and jobs across the whole Aerohub Business Park and beyond.”

Mark Duddridge, Chair of the Cornwall & Isles of Scilly Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) said, “Having driven the successful bid for the Enterprise Zone here the LEP is thrilled to see the first phase of the Aerohub Business Park progressing. This combination of office and industrial workspaces promises to be the beginnings of a vibrant community of businesses which will be given a boost by the additional benefits that locating within the Enterprise Zone can offer.”

Steve Double MP for Newquay and St Austell said “This morning I was delighted to attend the topping out ceremony of the new office block at Newquay Aerohub. It was great to visit with Cornwall Council and see the work completed to date on this important site. With the recent Government announcements safeguarding the Newquay-Gatwick route and the continued progress towards the Spaceport, Newquay continues to be the place to be for businesses looking to innovate and grow, and I look forward to the completion of these new facilities in the near future.”

Chris Couch, Area Manager Cornwall for Kier Construction said, “The Aerohub Business Park will bring an array of benefits to the local area and we are delighted to celebrate this latest milestone with a topping out ceremony. We are working with the local supply chain to deliver this exciting project that is set to leave a lasting legacy in the area.”

Small or Medium Sized Enterprises interested in locating in the new state of the art facilities are encouraged to  contact Will Oldrieve, Senior Consultant at Vickery Holman on either woldrieve@vickeryholman.com, or 01872 245608.

Posted on 10 October 2018

 

Categories: Cornwall

Quick wins helping people get back on their feet faster

Cornwall Council News feed - Wed, 10/10/2018 - 12:12

Work to transform adult social care services is delivering some early wins, with a trial project getting people back on their feet as quickly as possible and freeing up services for others.

STEPS, Cornwall Council’s reablement service aims to support people to get mobile and live independently in their own homes, enabling people to age well. 

The St Austell based service is part of a trial that aims to reduce the amount of time a person spends needing help so they can get back to living independently as soon as possible. This then allows more people to access the service. Previously a manager had to visit the client to sign off the person from needing any more help. In this new way of working the STEPS worker sends a photo of the care work log to allow the manager to sign off the person much more quickly.

66 year old George from Budock Water near Falmouth is just coming to the end of his treatment from the STEPS team following a long period in hospital and loss of mobility from the waist down.

Thanks to regular visits from the STEPS worker encouraging George to get mobile by walking around the village and doing simple exercises he is now able to get on with his life as normal with no further support needed from Adult Social Care.

George said “I thought that I wouldn’t be able to live my life the way I used to but following the help I received from the council I can now do all the things I used to do, seeing my friends, getting out and about and being independent.”

Cornwall Council Cabinet portfolio holder for Adults Rob Rotchell said: “George’s story is inspiring and shows how some simple interventions to maximise a person’s independence can dramatically improve their life.

“Getting people back on their feet and independent as quickly as possible is better for them, and also frees up resources to be directed elsewhere as people spend less time in hospital or accessing other support services.

“We are only in week 6 of the project but early signs show that working in a different way is delivering a 40% increase in STEPS capacity. This new approach to working will soon be rolled out across the whole of Cornwall, working to refocus services to help people age well - to prevent, or delay the escalation of needs.”

Having a period of reablement is better for a person’s health and wellbeing and is more cost effective than residential based care.

An estimated 1 in 4 people in Cornwall will be aged 65 or over by 2019 and increase by a further 40% over the next 20 years.  This places extraordinary costs pressures on both hospitals and residential care.  With a rising and ageing population in Cornwall with increasingly complex social care needs occurring at a time when increases in the resources available to local authorities are extremely limited.

This trial is part of a broader piece of work that the council is working on in partnership with Newton Europe Ltd. Cabinet members agreed that the Council will engage Newton Europe Ltd to deliver a contract worth up to £4 million, depending on the success of the programme. The initial analysis showed potential to achieve savings of up to £17 million.

Hear George’s story here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ofe_84_nXRc

Posted on 10 October 2018

Categories: Cornwall

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