Showing posts from March, 2018

Training Social Workers is Child's Play

CiCC members and council officers Central Bedfordshire Children in Care Council (CiCC) members provided aspiring social workers with plenty of food for thought after addressing them at a conference. The group of seven young people were invited to speak at the event organised by charity Frontline in Ware, Hertfordshire. They also led exercises with the 120 participants to get them thinking more about the needs and wishes of looked-after children. CiCC members are already involved in the recruitment process for people looking to get into children’s social care by doing an assessed and supported year in employment (ASYE) programme through the Central Bedfordshire Academy of Social Work and Early Intervention. That’s why they were invited to the event by Frontline, which recruits and trains social workers across the UK before working with local authorities to get them placed in children’s services departments. The CiCC members, the youngest of whom is 11, spoke candidl

Call For Candidates In By-Election 3rd May — Houghton Hall

A vacancy exists for a seat on the Houghton Regis Town Council in Houghton Hall ward. If more than one candidate is declared the contest will take place on 3rd May 2017. The official Notice of Election was dated today, 27th March 2018. Any nominations must be completed and delivered by 4pm Friday 6th April 2018. Postal vote applications or cancellations need to be in by 5pm on 18th April 2018. Proxy vote applications need to be in by 5pm on 25th April 2018. The address for all correspondence is Electoral Registration Officer, Priory House, Monks Walk, Chicksands, Shefford, Bedfordshire, SG17 5TQ. The cost of the election to the public purse has been put at £2000 per polling station ( estimated figures provided by the Returning Officer at Central Beds Council ). Houghton Hall normally has 5 polling stations. In by-elections, some polling stations may be consolidated to reduce costs. At last night's Town Council meeting, it was announced by the Town Clerk that two po

Appeal for Refurbishment of Tithe Farm Swimming Pool

On 7th February 2018 the Tithe Farm Primary School Council visited the Town Council Chambers where they presented the Mayor with their petition for their swimming pool. The mayor agreed to take their letter and petition to the next full meeting of councillors. The letter asking for support for the school council's petition was read out by the mayor this evening to fellow Town Councillors. The school plan to use the pool during term time and then open it up to the local community during the summer holidays. Some £50,000 is needed to refurbish the pool. The mayor said she had suggested that the group appeals to a wider audience including larger companies in the area. Cllr Chris Slough spoke highly of the school's council. He told the meeting tonight that the group were impressive, lively and organised. Cllr Joanna Hillyard, the Town Mayor, agreed, they were an impressive group, with some excellent speakers. The Town Council agreed to defer the petition to their Community

Appeal for Refurbishment of Tithe Farm Swimming Pool

Moved to new page .

Houghton Rangers Debts Unpaid

Houghton Regis Town Council tonight heard that an outstanding debt from 2016/17 relating to the hire of a football pitch and the associated pavilion was still unpaid. Houghton Rangers had hired the pitch from the start of the season, but during the season the club had folded with instalment payments unpaid. Cllr Richard Scott suggested that Beds FA be contacted with a view to having the club members blue listed, meaning that they would be unable to set up another club until the debt was cleared. The Clerk had written to the League but had they had not mentioned that possibility. Councillors agreed to write off the debt of £449.

April Activities at Houghton Regis Library

Children will love these crafts and activities! Eaten all your chocolate eggs? Why not call in at Houghton Regis Library and indulge in some great crafts and activities. There are lots to keep the children busy throughout the Easter holidays. Tuesday 3 April Drop in 10am to 2pm: Egg-stravaganza. Easter Egg Hunt sponsored by Morrisons. Your chance to get another chocolate egg. Every child that enters will get an egg! Wednesday 4 April Drop in 10am to 3pm: Easter Cup Bunny craft. Hop by and join us for this adorable craft. Thursday 5 April Drop in 10am to 3pm: Easter Basket Craft: Come and make an Easter Basket to take home. Ideal for storting any Easter treats you may still have! Friday 6 April Drop in 10am to 3pm: Pop-up Easter Cone Craft: Pop by for this fun craft. Saturday 7 April Drop in 10am to 3pm: Doily Sheep Craft: Today we are getting creative with paper doilies! Tuesday 10 April Drop in 10am to 3pm: Caterpillar Magnet Craft: Join us for the cute cra

Leaving the EU: NHS

A backbench debate took place in Westminster Hall yesterday discussing the effect of leaving the EU on the NHS. It was called by Labour MP, Ben Bradshaw. Local MP, Andrew Selous was asked by a constituency member to attend. Mr Selous said he was unable to attend but issued this response, "Thank you for contacting me about the effects of leaving the EU on the NHS. Sadly I cannot attend this Thursday’s debate due to some of my Trade Envoy commitments already in the diary. However, I thought you would like to know that in the year following the EU referendum, the number of EU nationals working in the NHS actually increased by 5.6 percent. I note that, unfortunately, there was a small fall in the number of nurses and health visitors from the EU during this time, however there are a variety of factors which could account for this, notably the introduction of a new English language test for NHS staff from the EU, and falling unemployment in countries such as Spain and Poland, wh

Town Council Offices To Be Relocated

The Town Council meet on Monday 26th March. A series of motions are catalogued and recorded in the draft minutes showing the minority Labour group to be opposed to the final motion that was carried by a mixture of Liberal Democrat, Independents, and Community Independent councillors. The agenda can be downloaded from  LINK . In essence, the Council, have voted to have the offices relocated to another site to protect the staff from possible asbestos contamination. Essential works to rectify issues with the flooring have been authorised up to £15,000. And a new sub-committee has been set up to look for opportunities to acquire more suitable premises and to investigate various land options to build a new Town Council Office with regard to the Town's growth agenda in the next 30 years. On 5th March the new sub-committee was set up with cross-party representation and a budget of £2000. FILMING As well as the usual opportunity for public questions and public filming of mee

Lower Thorn Village — 97 New Homes Plan for Linden Homes

Linden Homes * are set to develop Parcel 1 of the Houghton Regis North 2 master plan. Details have now been submitted for a plan to build 97 homes as houses and apartments ranging from 1 bedroom to 5 bedrooms, in a range of 15 styles, on a site covering approximately 3.7 hectares. Included in the plans are 29 affordable low-rise apartments and houses with from 1 to 4 bedrooms. Buildings of 2 and 2.5 storey height are proposed, with 3 storey key focal buildings proposed fronting the local centre. The site, identified as Lower Thorn Village, is on the southern side of Thorn Road, and will be situated next to a Local Centre (detailed plans awaited) where shops and a primary school are anticipated. From Thorn Road, the site will be served by a new access road with 8 cul-de-sacs. A new footpath will circumnavigate the east of the site. An environmental area near the Ouzel Brook will be created. The plans include an extensive shrub and tree planting scheme, together with specifi

Houghton Hall By-Election Set For 3rd May 2018

Houghton Regis Town Council has a vacancy for a councillor in Houghton Hall ward. An election has been called and this will be contested on 3rd May 2018. The cost to the Town Council if they choose to promote the election would be the issue of polling cards at approximately £1900.  Councillors will deliberate over that at their meeting on Monday 26th March. An official notice of poll is not anticipated until next week. Total costs of the by-election such as hiring and staffing the polling stations, count staff, delivery and collection of polling booths, issue and the opening of postal votes, printing and delivery of poll cards, postage, ballot box stationery are put are £2,000 per polling station, all paid for through Central Bedfordshire Council funding. Houghton Hall normally has five polling stations. ( estimated figures supplied by Returning Officer, CBC ). As well as the usual opportunity for public questions and public filming of meetings from 7.30pm, on the 26th March

Two Offenders Fined over £4,000 for Fly-Tipping

Two offenders have been fined over £4,000 for fly-tipping in Dunstable after both were caught on camera. One was caught by CCTV and one on a static camera deployed by Central Bedfordshire Council after several incidents of fly-tipping occurred in the area. Both offenders were caught in separate incidents in Dunstable. The first at the White Lion Retail Park and the second in Beech Road. Both offenders were asked to attend Luton Magistrates Court this week (Tuesday 13 March). A man from Tinsley Close, Luton was caught on CCTV fly tipping on two separate occasions at the White Lion Retail Park, Dunstable in July 2017. On one occasion he was caught throwing takeaway type food packaging from his vehicle. On the second occasion, he was seen to throw food waste on to the floor of the retail park and also a drinks container across the road. In his absence at Luton Magistrates’ Court the offender was fined £660 for each of the three offences and ordered to pay costs of £800 and a vict

Houghton Regis Parish Church Wins National Lottery Support

The Parish Church of All Saints’ has been awarded initial support* by the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) for a National Lottery grant for its restoration project. Made possible by National Lottery players, the project has been awarded a £25,700 development grant to enable the church to progress the plans and apply for a confirmed grant of £224,300 at a later date. The project has a two-fold aim; to make critical repairs to Houghton Regis Parish Church and to engage local people in their exceptional heritage. The main part of the project aims to carry out essential conservation work to the outside of our Grade I listed building; the outer structure of the church (built between 14th and 15th centuries) is in desperate need of repair – its striking chequered pattern of flint and Totternhoe stone needing extensive renovation and having been breached in places. The second part of the project aims to put in place an educational programme with a number of cultural activities to engage l

Beds Police in Contact Centre Community Engagement

Date for your diaries: Bedfordshire Police will be opening their doors for another community engagement event, this time focussing on our Force Contact Centre, on Sunday, 15 April. At the event officers and staff will discuss how the contact centre works, from answering calls to directing police resources in the most effective way. Attendees will also be able to test out some of the equipment the team uses and see the main call centre via a video link. The event will take place between 10am-12pm on Sunday, 15 April and is open to members of the public. Numbers are limited so anyone interested is encouraged to reserve their place as soon as possible by contacting the customer services team at The Contact Centre, known within the force as the ‘FCC’, is where many of the first contact services live, including call handlers, customer services, crime bureau and the Oscars - the people who make the strategic decisions when police are respond

Council Wins Funding for Innovative Cyclist-Alert Sign Trial Scheme

An innovative cycle safety project by Central Bedfordshire Council is one of three to have today been awarded £100,000 of central government funding to make cycling safer, more accessible and encourage more journeys by bike. The grant is from the  Cycling and Walking Small Business Research Initiative , which is run jointly with Innovate UK to help make cycling safer, more accessible and encourage more journeys by bike. The Council will use the funding to test proposals for a range of sensor technologies that will interact with new signage on rural roads to inform other road users that a cyclist is on the road. The Council hope that this initiative will help to make cycling and walking safer whilst encouraging more people to take up cycling at all ages as part of a green revolution in transport. Figures released at the end of last year show that for every billion miles travelled, 1,011cyclists will be killed or seriously injured, compared to just 26 car drivers (that’s al

Local Dog Kennels Pleads Guilty to Animal Welfare Offences

Tullian Park Hotel of Billington Road, Stanbridge, Leighton Buzzard has been fined, after a dog left in their care was found dead when the owners came to collect it. The owners of the licenced animal boarding establishment were ordered to pay almost £3,000 in fines and costs after pleading guilty for failing to take appropriate action after a dog died whilst in their care. An investigation by Central Bedfordshire Council’s Environmental Health officers uncovered multiple licence condition breaches that led to the incident in July 2017. The owner and licensee of Tullian Park Hotel, Mr and Mrs Page, attended Luton Magistrates on 27 February 2018. They both pleaded guilty to causing unnecessary suffering to an animal in their care and five breaches of their licence conditions. The court heard that a 4-year-old Dogue de Bordeaux (a large French Mastiff breed) called Lenny, died of suspected heat exhaustion after he was kept in an area with poor ventilation during very hot weather.

95% Get First Preference of Secondary School

Almost all pupils transferring to secondary and upper schools across Central Bedfordshire in September have been granted their first preference. Today (1 March) is National Secondary Offer Day, when parents and pupils across the country find out what the future holds for them. It is good news here with 95 per cent of Central Bedfordshire pupils who applied to transfer to upper schools for the 2018/19 academic year granted their first preference. And 92 per cent of Central Bedfordshire pupils applying for secondary school here have been offered their first-preference school. Councillor Steven Dixon, Executive Member for Families, Education and Children, said: “I’m delighted that so many pupils have been granted their first-preference school for September. We work very hard to ensure that children can attend a good local school, and today’s figures show that we are continuing to do that.” Of all the applications, most came via the council’s online system, with 93 per cent (o

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