place for information on Ross-on-Wye and the Wye Valley
NEWS - ROSS-ON-WYE
News - The Weekly News Magazine for
No. 164 - Wednesday, 12th September 2007
HEREFORDSHIRE COUNTY NEWS
Amy gets her dolphins
Amy Clements and her family are celebrating after being
given the keys to a specially adapted new home on the Bradbury
Lines development in Hereford. Spina Bifida sufferer Amy,
aged 14, has very little use in her legs and depends on
her wheelchair. Amy and her family will benefit greatly
from her specially adapted new home. Herefordshire Council's
Strategic Housing Team provided a £32,000 grant and, in
partnership with Marches Housing Association and George
Wimpey, converted a two-bedroom bungalow into a three-bedroom
family home had proven very difficult and expensive to adapt
for her needs and the best of several proposed designs to
modify and extend the property to suit her needs would have
left her isolated in an annex, away from her family. The
family were also unable to find a suitable home, available
in their area.
Wimpey installed many specific features to help Amy, such
as adjustable worktops and hob in the kitchen and a wheelchair-accessible
wet room in her bedroom. Thus giving teenager, Amy more
independence and mobility within her new home.
Clements Amy's father said, 'Amy was born with Spina Bifida
and throughout her life she has had many operations, starting
with head and spinal operations when Amy was just a few
hours old, to a major back operation two years ago. This
specially built bungalow will bring to an end our six year
quest of suitable housing for Amy. It will mean that Amy
can at last have the independence and access to day to day
activities we all take for granted, that may have caused
Amy discomfort and suffering. We are all looking forward
to her being able to do nearly everything herself and Amy
can't wait to start decorating her new bedroom with dolphins.'
family will move in shortly and meanwhile Marches Housing
Association arranged a presentation to welcome the Clements
to the new property. George Wimpey along with the Marches
presented Amy and her sister with a brand new laptop to
welcome them to their new home.
Amy Clements receives the keys to the new bungalow from Andrew Carey
with sister Laura,
dad Steve, Emma Beckley and Tina Wood.
Have Your Say on Community Issues
The September round of Community Forum meetings is continuing
into its second week, with another three meetings set to
take place. Local Policing Teams and Herefordshire Council
are encouraging local people to attend the meetings and
raise issues for the partners to deal with in the coming
Forum meetings are held regularly across Herefordshire as
part of the PACT (Partners and Communities Together) process,
which seeks to give local people the opportunity to get
involved in how the authorities manage the places in which
they live, work and visit. The latest round of Community
Forums runs throughout September, with the forthcoming meetings
catering for the Bromyard, Kington and Golden Valley areas.
meeting will have a representative of the Local Policing
Team and Herefordshire Council on hand to discuss issues
and meet members of the public. They will be happy to discuss
any crime related and antisocial behaviour issues and other
ways in which the area can be improved.
first meeting of week two took place at the Bromyard Centre
in Cruxwell Street, Bromyard on Tuesday, 11th September.
This covers both the Bromyard Town and Bromyard Rural Local
next meeting is the Kington Community Forum to take place
today, Wednesday, 12th September at Lady Hawkins Leisure
Centre. This again covers both the town and the surrounding
final meeting of the second week will take place on Thursday,
13th September at the Golden Valley Community Centre in
Peterchurch, to cover the Golden Valley and Hereford Rural
South areas. All
of the Community Forum meetings will begin at 7pm on their
meetings provide the public with a great opportunity to
find out what West Mercia Police, Herefordshire Council
and other partners have been doing to reduce crime, disorder
and antisocial behaviour in their neighbourhood,' said Chief
Inspector Sue Thomas, who is charge of Local Policing in
Herefordshire. 'Updates on actions taken since previous
meetings will also be available and there will be an opportunity
for the public to let us know if their problems have been
resolved and to tell us of any issues which need some new
Council Leader, Councillor Roger Phillips said, 'The council
and its partners are committed to making Herefordshire a
safer and better place in which to live and work and we
are continually striving to improve our communities. We
can only do this with the help of the people who live here.
Please get along to your local Community Forum and let us
know the issues which concern you.'
worry if you are unsure which Community Forum or Local Policing
Team covers your area. Simply visit www.westmercia.police.uk
and click on the Local Policing link, enter a postcode into
the postcode locator and the policing team for that area
will be displayed. Information about each of the Community
Forum / PACT meetings is also displayed alongside.
full listing of Community Forum meeting dates and venues
is also available by visiting the Herefordshire Council
website at www.herefordshire.gov.uk and, as a handy reminder,
the myherefordshire.com website will also be displaying
information about forthcoming meetings.
Children launch a Walking Bus
and children at St Paul's CE Primary School in Hereford
have launched a new walking bus to reduce traffic congestion
and make it easier for working parents to take their children
to school. Traffic on Hampton Dene Road in Tupsley has been
a problem for some time, as 1600 children are transported
to and from St Paul's Primary School and the Bishop of Hereford's
Bluecoat School daily.
In spite of traffic-calming measures introduced last year
and regular monitoring by the police, St Paul's has long
been concerned about the safety of its children walking
to and from school. Issues such as people driving too fast,
not paying attention, getting frustrated because of traffic
volume, not being considerate to others all cause friction
and potential danger to children which the school wanted
with the school travel adviser, the school successfully
applied for funding from Herefordshire Council to set up
a walking bus scheme. Operating on a Monday and Tuesday
to begin with, the children gather at the Cock of Tupsley
car park which is on the corner of Ledbury Road and Hampton
Park Road. Volunteer parents walk the children safely from
the car park to the school further down the road.
Buses are a great way of getting children to school safely
and they also cut down on the number of cars coming to school.
It's usually those same cars which cause the congestion
and danger outside the school gate. Reginald Thomas, head
teacher at St Paul's, said, 'We have always encouraged children
and parents to walk to school, but realise that this isn't
possible for some, particularly for children whose parents
have to go to work. The scheme we've been able to develop
with funding from the government's Walking Bus Initiative
has given us the opportunity to provide parents with something
a bit different so that their children can get walking,
and the parents can have a less frustrating journey into
work. Hopefully the children will have fun too.'
am delighted the school has set up a new walking bus and
hope it will prove to be so successful that they have to
expand the scheme to five days a week,' said Councillor
Brian Wilcox, cabinet member for highways and transportation..
'There are so many cars on the roads at the moment, we need
to make sure our children are safe when travelling to and
from school. It is also important that we encourage children
to become active, and walking to school is a good way to
start. Congratulations to St Paul's and all the volunteers
who have made this scheme possible.'
Spike the hedgehog escorting the children on their first walking
Council's 'Win, Win' Solution for Rotherwas Ribbon
Herefordshire Council has announced what it calls a 'win,
win solution' to protect the Rotherwas Ribbon archaeological
find, explore opportunities for tourism and safeguard the
jobs and businesses that depend on the new Rotherwas access
council's cabinet debated a 50 page report on how the Ribbon
should be preserved for future generations. They heard that
Herefordshire Council has made an application for funding
to English Heritage to enable further archaeological investigation
of the presumed course of the Ribbon to North and South
of the original course of the access road. This will help
define the extent and nature of the find and allow the council
to consider further options to develop opportunities for
tourism, heritage and education.
upon the results of any further investigation, the council
proposes to prepare a conservation plan and determine how
public access to the Ribbon could be achieved, evaluating
the potential for a permanent visitor centre. English Heritage
has been involved since the discovery of the Ribbon and
its experts have advised that the council's engineering
solution, to cover the site with layers of protective membranes
and sand, will protect it for future generations. This was
essential as leaving the Ribbon exposed to the elements
would eventually destroy it.
council approved the completion of the Rotherwas access
road, as this is essential for the completion of the £20-million
Rotherwas Futures project, which will transform the existing
Rotherwas Industrial Estate, the county's key employment
site which houses 125 companies. Welcomed by business, the
project will include a flood alleviation scheme, create
new jobs and help Herefordshire's economy to compete.
cabinet heard that abandoning or re-routing the access road
to avoid the archaeological find could cost council taxpayers
between £6 million and £110 million, according to a range
of options which included the building of a tunnel under
the Rotherwas Ribbon. Instead the archaeological find will
be protected in line with advice from archaeologists and
council stopped work on the Rotherwas access road around
the Ribbon site earlier this year, when the significance
of the find was established. The find was announced to councillors
and citizens in May. Plans to protect the Ribbon were initially
put on hold after popular demand to see it. Around 1,000
people were given escorted tours of the site during July.
The council covered the site in August to protect it after
archaeologists conducted a fingertip clean of the surface
to carefully remove deposited silt.
John Jarvis, cabinet member for the environment, said, 'The
council often has to balance a number of disparate but passionately
held points of view in order to reach a solution that supports
the greater good for Herefordshire. We have listened to
all the arguments, as well as expert advice, not least English
Heritage and professional archaeologists, and we have agreed
the best possible way of protecting the Rotherwas Ribbon
for future generations, as well as exploring opportunities
for tourism and education. Furthermore, we have to take
into account how we can ensure that Herefordshire has a
vibrant commercial and business life, that firms operating
here have the best chance to compete and prosper and that
new jobs are created to help our young people stay in Herefordshire,
get on the housing ladder and enjoy the great quality of
life the county has to offer.
to this, we have the interests of council tax payers at
heart. The options to build the road around, over or underneath
the Rotherwas Ribbon were simply not even remotely viable.
At the end of the day we know those who simply want to stop
the road will not be happy, but people who genuinely care
about the protection of the Rotherwas Ribbon and want to
find out more about its extent and character can be assured
that we have taken the right course of action.' The cabinet's
decision is a key one and the Council stated that it can
be called in for further scrutiny by other councillors.
Café bids for national award
Leominster Pavilion Community Interest Company, which runs
a café at the former cricket pavilion in the town's Grange,
has won the accolade of Best Market Town Project in the
West Midlands as part of the National Market Towns Award
Scheme. The awards scheme, run by Action for Market Towns
working with Advantage West Midlands, aims to recognize
the dedication and hard work of initiatives designed to
regenerate town centres.
regional winner, the Leominster scheme will now compete
at the national final being held later this month. The Leominster
Pavilion Community Interest Company, which has received
support and funding from Herefordshire Council, also won
the award for business and community. Henriette Lyttle-Breukelaar,
director of partnerships at Advantage West Midlands, said,
'The Pavilion project excelled in all areas by both making
use of a disused and iconic building in the town as well
as providing employment for people with learning disabilities.
The project has been built on firm foundations and has strong
not-for-profit café, which is run by Leominster's Marshfield
Centre, was launched in August 2006. Marshfield is a Herefordshire
Council Day Service supporting people with learning disabilities.
Jonathan Pitts, manager of the Marshfield Centre, said:
'When we started the project, the former cricket pavilion
had been empty for three years and was getting vandalized
and we thought a café would be a good use for the building.
Leominster Market Towns and Herefordshire Council Community
Regeneration Project Development Team helped us apply for
funding and we also received a contribution from property
services to help modernize the building. 'These awards reflect
the success of the café which has not only become a popular
part of the community but also provides real employment
opportunities for people from the Marshfield Centre'.
project was funded through the Leominster Area Regeneration
Company. The national final will be held during the Action
for Market Towns annual conference, on 26th and 27th September
Hannah Bowden, Susan Blake, Lisa Thompson, Jonathan Pitts, Jason
Stuchbery and Henriette Lyttle-Breukelaar
with the award for Best Market Town Project in the West Midlands.
New Car Park to Open in Hereford on Thursday
A new car park is to open in Hereford's city centre on Thursday,
13th September. The extra 60 car parking spaces at 15-17
Kyrle Street, formerly the Car Centre, have been provided
after Herefordshire Council reached agreement with the landowner
to manage the facility.
Brian Wilcox, cabinet member for highways and transportation,
said, 'I am delighted this car park is now open. It will
provide much needed space in this area of the city where
there is significant demand for parking, especially as it
is close to shops in Commercial Road and the County Hospital.
We were able to reach an agreement with the landowner to
manage the car park and, in return, we will receive a proportion
of the income from it.'
permission for the car park was granted on condition that
the facility is managed by Herefordshire Council in accordance
with its overall transport policy. It is a pay and display
car park and the usual disabled vehicle and local elderly
concessionary exemptions will apply.
Temporary Traffic Arrangements for Rotherwas Access Road
Motorists in Hereford are being advised that temporary,
three way traffic signals are to be erected on Monday, 17th
September, at the junction of Holme Lacy Road with Gatehouse
Road and Chapel Lane.
are now needed at this junction to enable the council's
contractor, McAlpine, to complete the construction of the
new four arm roundabout for the Rotherwas access road. Works
have been ongoing in recent months to construct sections
of the roundabout beside the roads at the junction. However,
the works will now encroach onto the roads and the temporary
traffic lights are needed to allow contractors to work safely.
It is expected that the lights will remain at this location
until mid December 2007.
should also be advised that they will be directed through
the junction in a number of ways as various new sections
of carriageway are constructed. Signs will be in place at
all times to ensure the smooth operation of the junction.
Every effort will be made to minimize delays.
Open Day at New Leominster Police Station a Huge Success
Well over 1,500 people visited the Herefordshire Division
open day at Leominster, enjoying the chance to take a look
for themselves around the town’s brand new police station.
Crowds of people of all ages attended the event at the Enterprise
Way police station to enjoy a variety of attractions and
gain an insight into Local Policing by chatting to police
and community support officers during tours of the station.
activities included a demonstration of self defence techniques,
dance displays by the 2FaCed Dance Company and a fly by
and aerial display by the police helicopter. Hereford and
Worcester Fire and Rescue Service’s smoke tent was also
hugely popular, giving people the chance to experience the
difficulties and dangers of being trapped in a smoke filled
than 400 children enjoyed the chance to take away special
‘wanted’ posters of themselves to commemorate their visit
and the chance to sit in a police car, complete with working
sirens and emergency lights also proved to be a big draw
for younger visitors. There were also displays of police
equipment, finger printing for children, a crime scene display
by police forensic officers and stands from Crimestoppers,
Smart Water and Herefordshire Community Safety and Drugs
Commander, Chief Superintendent Mark Turner, said the day
had proved to be a huge success. 'I was really pleased to
see such good support from local people, who came from both
Leominster itself and the surrounding areas in Shropshire,
Worcestershire and Mid Wales,' he said. 'It was particularly
pleasing to see many family groups with parents and grandparents
bringing their children along. We tried to have something
for everyone, whatever age, and visitors seemed to be really
interested in learning more about policing and the work
of our partner agencies.
new police station is a tremendous facility and it was good
to be able to give local people the opportunity to see for
themselves the commitment West Mercia Constabulary is making
to policing North Herefordshire.'
day was raising money for Macmillan Cancer Relief and the
Police Community Fund for victims of crime. This included
£500 raised by Colin Osborne, editor of the Leominster Journal,
who gamely entered into the spirit of a mock arrest and
raised his ‘bail money’ in an hour from the confines of
a prison cell! Other funds were raised from the sale of
refreshments, plus the proceeds of a raffle.
open day was the conclusion of a busy week for the new police
station, which was officially opened by the Lord Lieutenant
of Herefordshire and Worcestershire, Sir Thomas Dunne, on
Tuesday afternoon. The opening ceremony was also attended
by the mayors of Leominster and surrounding towns, as well
as West Mercia Chief Constable, Paul West and the chairman
of West Mercia Police Authority, Paul Deneen.
Deneen said that the new police station affirmed the Police
Authority’s continuing investment in police facilities across
the county, following on from recent new police stations
at Peterchurch, Bromyard, Kington and South Wye, as well
as the ongoing improvement works at Hereford.
Countrywide Farmers plc Fined for Health and Safety Offences
Countrywide Farmers plc admitted two offences under the
Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 at Herefordshire county
Court on Monday, 10th September. The company was fined £10,000
in total for both offences and was ordered to pay £4,649
breaches were identified in April 2006, when environmental
health officers from Herefordshire Council were notified
by West Mercia Police of a serious accident at the Countrywide
Farmers store on Mortimer Road, Hereford. It was found that
a delivery vehicle had been reversed along the front of
the store and then collided with a customer. An inquest
concluded that the customer's death was accidental. However,
the jury said the management of health and safety was not
a priority with the company at that time.
two offences relate to the failure of the company to conduct
their undertaking in such a way as to protect employees
and members of the public from a risk to their health and
safety from vehicles. It was common practice for vehicles
to reverse along the front of the store, crossing the pedestrian
routes to the exit and entrance of the store. The company
was aware of the risks associated with workplace transport
but had not introduced adequate procedures to ensure that
these risks were controlled. The company has since introduced
satisfactory transport safety procedures on site and a one
way system within the car park to reduce the amount of reversing
Tector, Herefordshire Council's head of environmental health
and trading standards, said, 'This case illustrates the
importance of properly managing transport safety in the
workplace and is a reminder to other businesses to check
and Safety Executive statistics show that workplace transport
is the second biggest cause of work related fatal accidents
and is therefore a priority area for environmental health
officers when undertaking health and safety inspections.
Businesses wanting information on how to check the safety
of their sites are advised to view the Health and Safety
Executives website on workplace transport at www.hse.gov.uk/workplacetransport/index.htm.
Council's Welcomes Scrutiny of 'Win, Win' Solution for Rotherwas
Herefordshire Council has welcomed further debate on whether
the cabinet decision on the Rotherwas Ribbon archaeological
find was based on advice from English Heritage and all financial
considerations were taken into account. The
council's Environment Scrutiny Committee has 'called in'
John Jarvis, cabinet member for the environment, said, 'We
believe the council should take every opportunity to ensure
it is doing the right thing to protect the Rotherwas Ribbon,
explore opportunities for tourism and complete the Rotherwas
access road to safeguard existing and future jobs in Hereford.
However, the news that the decision will be scrutinized
is welcomed. The views of the scrutiny committee are a key
part of the council's democratic process. Its role will
be to test the accountability and transparency of any decisions
taken by the council so it is right that it scrutinizes
the decision and any background material.'
council said it had aimed for a 'win win solution' when
the cabinet debated a 50 page report on the Ribbon on Thursday,
6th September 2007. The cabinet approved the completion
of the road, which it said was essential for the success
and transformation of the Rotherwas Industrial Estate, the
county's key employment site, which houses 125 companies.
of the council's strategic monitoring committee Councillor
Phil Edwards said, 'I welcome the opportunity for scrutiny
to take a second look at the vitality of the Rotherwas access
road and the future of the local economy. At the same time
I wish to recommend the importance of safeguarding this
archaeological find and creating an opportunity for increased
value from tourism.'
cabinet voted unanimously to protect the Ribbon in line
with advice from archaeologists and best practice. The council
is hoping for funding from English Heritage to enable archaeological
investigation of the presumed course of the Ribbon to the
north and south of the original course of the access road.
This will allow the council to consider options to develop
opportunities for tourism, heritage and education, including
evaluating the potential for a permanent visitor centre.
The council stopped work on the Rotherwas access road around
the Ribbon site earlier this year when the significance
of the find was established. It announced the find to councillors
and citizens in May. Plans to protect the Ribbon were initially
put on hold after popular demand to see it.
Jarvis said, 'The council is working hard to balance a number
of conflicting views, including those of the anti road protesters,
those who want the Ribbon protected for future generations,
the needs of business to compete commercially, the need
to create new jobs for our young people, the hopes of local
residents that a new road will alleviate traffic problems
and the interests of council tax payers, who do not want
to bear the brunt of the costs of diverting the road around
the Ribbon. Making everyone happy is mission impossible
of course, but we have listened to all views and expert
advice in coming to a decision that we feel reflects the
needs of community as a whole.'
Make Sure You Respond to Your Electoral Register Form
Herefordshire residents are being urged to make sure they
respond to electoral registration forms. If they don't,
they may have difficulty in opening a bank account, getting
a credit card or even a mobile phone contract. The
forms are currently being sent out to around 80,000 households.
Herefordshire Council need of any changes to the information
they hold so they can publish the new Electoral Register
good news is that if nothing has changed since last year,
people can now inform the council either over the telephone
or via the council's website - www.herefordshire.gov.uk.
The register is used by companies and organizations for
credit checks and to verify personal details required when
people open bank accounts, seek credit and want to enter
various kinds of contracts.
know Autumn is a very busy time of the year for everyone,'
said Colette Maund, the Electoral Registration Services
Manager. 'The summer holidays are over, children are back
at school, older children are off to university, gardeners
are preparing for winter; the list of activities goes on
and on - but we'd ask people to take just a few minutes
to either complete the forms and return them or to get in
touch by phone or via our website.
of staff in the electoral registration office have already
begun sorting through the enormous amount of information
that people have started sending back. Many people do not
realize that they are required, by law, to fill in these
forms every year. This year we've tried to make it as easy
as possible for people in Herefordshire to register. Electors
can return their forms by post in the Freepost envelopes
provided, or, if there are no changes to the previous year's
information, they can use their phones or the Internet to
let inform us.
process an awful lot of forms during the autumn and a great
deal of that information could be registered by phone or
Internet. Returning the forms by post costs the council
more money both in postage and in staff time.'
the message that Colette wants to send out is that people
should ensure that they register and if possible they should
use the Freephone number 0800 197 4915 or log onto the council
website at www.herefordshire.gov.uk and use the quick link
to Register of Electors.
Archaeological Excavations at Credenhill Iron Age Hill Fort
An archaeological excavation is under way at Credenhill
Iron Age Hill Fort to the west of Hereford which will carry
on until the end of September. Under the direction of Peter
Dorling of Herefordshire Archaeology, the team is being
assisted by local volunteers and students from Cardiff University.
excavations are part of a longer term project being undertaken
in partnership with The Woodland Trust who have been awarded
a Heritage Lottery Fund grant to conserve and study Credenhill
Park Wood in which the fort, the largest in the Marches
of Wales, is situated. The
bigger project will involve the removal of conifer trees
that were planted in the 1960s from much of the fort, and
the restoration of the surrounding woodland to mixed deciduous
2007 excavations are focusing on the summit and Southern
area of the interior of the fort, with a series of trenches
designed partly to establish if there was an earlier enclosure
on the hill and also to assess the damage done by the planted
Dorling said, 'This is an important opportunity to learn
more about the history of the fort in the Iron Age and into
the Roman period. Hopefully it will shed light on the Iron
Age in the county more widely, given that this is the first
sustained campaign of excavation of a hill fort in Herefordshire
for 40 years.'
Keith Ray, the County Archaeologist, who directs the overall
archaeological project for the Trust and Herefordshire Council,
said, 'The 2007 excavations represent a further stage in
the partnership with The Woodland Trust that in 2003 / 2004
saw the purchase of Park Wood and the fort for woodland
restoration, historic conservation and access purposes.
"We are delighted to be able to assist with this further
stage of work, and we intend that our new excavations will
amplify what is known about this massive site.'
2007 excavations will feature in a Time Team Special documentary
about hill forts that is being made this summer and will
include footage of other Herefordshire sites. The programme
will be broadcast on Channel 4 television in 2008. Meanwhile,
the public are being invited to see the excavations themselves
through guided visits at 2pm, 3pm and 4pm on Wednesday,
26th September and at 11am, Noon, 1pm, 2pm and 3pm on Saturday,
29th September. Booking is essential. Contact Jacky Denovan
on 01432 260470 for further information.
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