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Showing posts from November, 2021

Five ways in which CPRE Bedfordshire works on climate change

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The Campaign for the Protection of Rural England has a local branch in Bedfordshire that feels it important to combat climate change.   Hedgerows CPRE Bedfordshire campaigns for the protection of hedgerows that suck carbon out of the air and store it in their trunks, roots and in the soil underground. In 2020 they joined Pertenhall & Swineshead Parish Council and a local action group in their successful effort to stop a local farmer from destroying around 800 metres of field hedgerow in Swineshead. Supporting local climate action groups The CPRE Bedfordshire Living Countryside Awards celebrate and promote local action groups working on climate change, zero waste, tree planting and other carbon mitigation projects. The 2021 awards projects included The Ampthill Buzz which is managed by the Ampthill Climate Change Group who aim to turn selected close-mown turfed areas within the town into wildflower havens, Re-Phil’s Zero Waste shop and a new community woodland in the Forest of M

Cllr Ryan Demands Change with CBC Children's Services

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A Central Bedfordshire local councillor, Parkside's Toni Ryan, says she is demanding change with CBC Children's Services. Cllr Ryan said, "At the Extraordinary Children Services Meeting on 7 October, called by the ombudsman after the failing of another child, Councillor Clark stated to press that we (CBC) are at rock bottom. This is 2 years after the damning Ofsted.  "We, as the Council agreed to invest £1.1 million, and both parents and our partners have not seen any change in the service. The Conservative administration need to start to lead and put people in place that can, not just their friends.  "So at the recent Full Council meeting I asked the leader to put his reputation on the line and say he had faith that the service can be turned around in readiness for the imminent inspection.  "The answer was non committal." SEND DEBATE FULL COUNCIL "A long speech full of sound and fury" was how opposition councillor, Adam Zerny,  summed up a mo

The Land Trust appoints community ranger to ensure residents Love their Linmere Life

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The national charity looking after more than 190 acres of natural habitat and green space at new urban village Linmere has appointed a community ranger, Richard Eltringham, to help residents make the most of the natural environment in which they live. The Land Trust, which specialises in nurturing a wide variety of public open space and green infrastructure,  will look after the land at Linmere for the life of the development, ensuring it is sustainably managed for the benefit of the local wildlife habitat and the community while improving the biodiversity of the area. Open Green Space With no resident more than a five-minute walk from an open green space, and outdoor living a key feature of Linmere life, ensuring the land is protected is a priority for the consortium overseeing the development. The Land Trust's five core aims are to ensure it protects the environment, facilitates community cohesion, helps improve the health and wellbeing of residents, provides educational oppor

Police issue 4,000 Letters in Crackdown on Uninsured Vehicles

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Driving uninsured is not an invisible crime Over 4,000 letters have been sent by the Road Policing Unit so far this year to motorists who have been detected driving without insurance in Bedfordshire.   The figure has been shared as part of a national Drive Insured campaign this month to highlight that driving without insurance is not an invisible crime. In total, 4,094 letters have been issued by the force as part of Operation Tutelage since the start of the year with 62% of recipients subsequently taking out insurance. Acting Detective Sergeant Justin Smyth, from the Road Policing Unit, said, “For some people, insuring their vehicle has slipped their mind and we thank everyone who has taken the right steps to insure their vehicle after receiving a letter. "Driving without insurance is not a matter of out of sight, out of mind. It is a crime we can easily detect and we will take action. “Contacting motorists in this way is a positive and proactive way to help improve the safet

Central Beds to Gain From Special Fund for Adult Social Care

Central Bedfordshire to receive £586,335 from the Adult Social Care Workforce Recruitment and Retention Fund South West Bedfordshire MP, Andrew Selous is delighted that Central Bedfordshire will receive £586,335 from the new Workforce Recruitment and Retention Fund for adult social care. This £162.5 million fund will bolster the capacity of the adult social care workforce over winter, helping to ensure care workers across the country can continue to deliver high quality care for the most vulnerable in our society. This funding comes on top of the additional £388 million infection control funding that we announced for adult social care in September 2021. Over the course of the pandemic, the Government will have made available over £6 billion in funding for local authorities to address pressures on their services, including for adult social care. The Workforce Recruitment and Retention Fund will enable local authorities to work closely with providers to consider innovative measures to bo

Local café and bakery coming to the Farmstead at Linmere

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  A selection of the dishes available at Café in the Park A local independent café with its own in-house bakery has become the first business to take premises at the soon-to-be-opened Farmstead at new urban village Linmere, next to Houghton Regis. Café in the Park , which will use ingredients from local farms and suppliers, will open its doors in the New Year , offering residents of Linmere, Houghton Regis and the surrounding towns and villages a ‘destination' meeting place. The family-friendly cafe will be the focal point at the Farmstead, the new village's community hub, which will also offer a hall available for a range of activities, an adventure playground, dog grooming parlour and other outdoor-related retail outlets. Café in the Park's philosophy of serving wholesome homemade food created from locally sourced ingredients has proven very popular at its owners' similar ventures in Hertfordshire and Greater London. They own and run successful outlets in Rickman

New Council Tenancy Deals To Give Tenants More Stability

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Central Bedfordshire Council proposes change to social housing tenancies to give tenants more stability. Central Bedfordshire Council has reviewed its Tenancy Strategy and has today launched a consultation on changing the length of the housing tenancies it offers. The key proposal is to end the use of five-year fixed-term tenancies and offer secure tenancies often referred to as ‘lifetime’ tenancies. This change will offer tenants greater security and stability rather than worrying that they may need to move every five years. This is particularly important for families with young children attending school and those who work locally. The proposal will also enable the council to reduce the administrative burden of reviewing all tenancies every five years freeing up officer time to better manage social housing stock and focus on other important issues such as anti-social behaviour and tenancy fraud. Executive Member for Housing & Assets, Cllr Eugene Ghent said, “Whilst previous thi

GPs: Houghton Regis General Practice Capacity

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Following a meeting with the Chief Secretary to the Treasury, Simon Clarke MP, yesterday, South West Bedfordshire MP, Andrew Selous, said, “Leighton Buzzard, Linslade and Houghton Regis are all growing fast with thousands of new homes built or going up now and general practice capacity is not increasing alongside that growth. I have raised this repeatedly in Parliament recently and have had meetings about it with the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care and yesterday with the Chief Secretary to the Treasury who is in charge of government spending.”   “Yesterday’s meeting with the Chief Secretary to the Treasury went well and he agreed that the Government needs to have a better system of allocating capital for new general practice premises where there is significant housing growth. This needs to be more certain and better planned. I will work with him to deliver that. New buildings need new primary care staff and last year 3,793 new GPs started work and there are now 4,000 G

Bedfordshire Lieutenancy: HM Lord-Lieutenant’s Cadets ready for service

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HM Lord-Lieutenant of Bedfordshire Helen Nellis  recently appointed her cadets for 2021/2022 at a ceremony held at Bedford Modern School by kind permission of the Head, Mr Alex Tate. Dignitaries present at the ceremony, which was held in line with current COVID-19 guidelines, included the High Sheriff of Bedfordshire Eric Masih, Speaker of Bedford Borough Council Cllr Jane Walker, Mayor of Luton Cllr Mahmood Hussain, Chairman of Central Bedfordshire Council Cllr Brian Saunders, Chief Fire Officer Andrew Hopkinson, Deputy Chief Constable Trevor Rodenhurst, Chief Executive of the East Anglia Reserve Forces’ and Cadets’ Association Colonel Ray Wilkinson  QVRM TD VR DL  and the President of St John’s Ambulance Anthony Duggan OBE. They were joined at the ceremony by the Vice Lord-Lieutenant of Bedfordshire Chris Sharwood-Smith MBE, representatives from the various cadet organisations, Deputy Lieutenants and cadets’ family members. The role of Lord-Lieutenant’s cadets is to support the Lord-

Cawley’s Partners with Linmere in Houghton Regis to Collect Commercial Waste

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An upcoming Houghton Regis-based housing development, Linmere, has partnered with waste management business Cawleys to manage the waste generated by its planned community hub. The arrangement will mean that the majority of the waste produced at the new community hub — The Farmstead — will either be recycled or treated through energy from waste (EfW). Cawleys will focus on “ giving new life ” to waste through sustainable recycling and resource management. The arrangement will mean the majority of the waste produced at the Farmstead will either be recycled or converted into energy. Unusual uses for the rubbish include transforming coffee grounds from the new cafe into logs for wood-burning stoves. Cawleys, one of the largest family-run waste management companies in East Anglia, the South Midlands and the South East, has an impressive processing site that handles around 1,200 tonnes of waste a day. It is equipped with more than 3km of conveyor belts, uses high tech optical detectors to

Lidl To Open its First Houghton Regis Store on Thursday

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Lidl will open a new supermarket in Houghton Regis on the Linmere Development on Thursday. 40 new jobs are being created for the area. Construction company, Mitnija, worked with Lidl to build the store, which will include an on-site bakery, customer toilets and parking for both cars and bicycles. The store at Elmers Gate in the northeast of Houghton Regis, off Sundon Road, opens on Thursday, 4 November. Opening times are set to 8am - 10pm, Monday to Saturday, and 10am – 4pm on Sunday.   The store is the first of two stores that Lidl is opening in the town; the second one will be opened later on Houghton Road, near Northfields Academy. The retailer is also building a one million sq ft regional distribution centre on 58 acres, nearby, the largest in the UK, due for completion in 2023, which will create 1,000 new jobs.  Linmere development director Nigel Reid said, "Lidl will be an important asset for the whole community. Lidl supermarkets have become hugely popular in Great Bri