ROSS DETECTIVE WINS POLICE AWARD
DC Philippa Johnson of Ross CID, was presented with an award
at the Divisional Awards ceremony at Hereford Town Hall
last week by Divisional Commander, Chief Superintendent
Mark Turner. DC Johnson was commended along with another
colleague for their part in bringing a burglar to justice,
who had stolen from several rural homes in South Herefordshire,
Gloucestershire, Gwent and Thames Valley during August and
September 2008. As a result of painstaking attention to
detail and close liaison work with colleagues in other forces,
Thomas Mochan was identified and subsequently charged, later
receiving a four-year term of imprisonment at Crown Court.
at the awards ceremony, the Chief Constable, Mr Paul West,
paid tribute to Herefordshire officers and staff. Regular
police officers, support staff, community support officers
and members of the public received a range of awards to
mark the excellent, outstanding or courageous service that
they have provided. He
said, 'This award ceremony is all about what the force is
trying to achieve - Quality People. The awards tonight represent
just a small sample of what our staff achieve every day
for West Mercia, displaying a range of skills and abilities.
The awards clearly demonstrate the strong public service
ethic that is evident in everything that West Mercia Police
undertakes.' Councillor Richard Smith from West Mercia Police
Authority added, 'We are here to celebrate and applaud examples
of policing and connected activity which cannot be captured
in pictures. The evening leaves me humbled and inspired
- and convinced, yet again, that old fashioned values are
alive and well in the police service.'
Commander Chief Superintendent Mark Turner said, 'In a county
with low levels of crime and disorder, I am delighted that
our officers and staff repeatedly show that they can respond
professionally when serious incidents do occur. They constantly
demonstrate they are proud to serve in the Police Service
and proud to protect the people of Herefordshire.'
following were among those who were commended at the ceremony:
Divisional Commendations were awarded to:
Cris Abel (Belmont LPT) for his prompt and determined
actions on 7th October 2008, following a report of suspicious
behaviour at a cash dispensing machine involving a skimming
device. The suspect who had earlier placed the device on
an ATM at The Oval snatched it from a woman who had found
it on the machine. He ran off and a search was mounted by
CSO Abel and Sgt Chris Payne along the Great Western Way
and into nearby dense woodland. Using tracking skills he
had acquired, CSO Abel managed to locate the suspect hiding
in the woodland and the skimming device nearby. This significant
arrest led to the arrest of other members of a well organized
West Midlands gang who were all given substantial prison
sentences at Court.
Andy Larkin (Hinton LPT) was commended for his actions
on 10th February 2009 when he became involved in a search
for four burglary suspects who had decamped from a car on
the Callow near Hereford. During a fast developing, hectic
incident, PC Larkin used his knowledge of the local terrain
to seek a vantage point which allowed him to direct other
officers towards the suspects. Furthermore, his calm, logical
thinking, initiative and communications skills enabled him
to close in with colleagues on two of the suspects without
their knowledge and effect their arrests. Four men now await
trial at Crown Court for burglary offences.
Tim Dugmore (Peterchurch) was commended for his excellence
in the management of crime teams whilst a Detective Sergeant
and for his commitment, enthusiasm, professionalism and
investigative ability in the detection of crime, contributing
to community reassurance in Herefordshire. DS Dugmore supervised
a large investigation into a number of assaults in Hereford
city centre between May and September 2007 which required
25 suspect interviews, 50 witness statements and 81 separate
identification procedures, all of which he co-ordinated
and managed to a positive result.
Honourable Gilbert Greenall, High Sheriff of Herefordshire
& Worcestershire, presented the following with High Sheriff's
Harford (AA Patrol) was given a High Sheriff's Award
for his quick thinking, professionalism and courage. Dave
is an AA patrolman. On 27th November 2008, whilst travelling
along the A4103, he witnessed a car losing control, ending
up on its roof in a ditch and leaking fuel into a stream.
Dave, being first on the scene, immediately protected it
using the facilities on his vehicle and alerted the emergency
services. He then proceeded to rescue the one adult and
four children from the vehicle, knowing the vehicle could
explode from the leaking fuel. On arrival of the other services,
Dave provided a clear, thorough and concise account of events
which further assisted the rescue effort - and showed that
day he really was the fourth emergency service!
Bowen and Ian Morris (Hereford Times) were given High
Sheriff's Awards for journalistic professionalism, commitment
and tenacity in maintaining a weekly media road safety campaign
for more than a year for the good of all those using the
roads of Herefordshire. Since January 2008, over 60 articles
have been published as part of the Hereford Times' Safer
Driving Campaign, which has not only given sound advice
to all road users in the county but given many local motoring
groups a platform on which to promote their activities.
you to you all for keeping Herefordshire a safer place in
which to live and work.
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Superintendent Mark Turner presents DC Johnson with her award.
The Hon. Gilbert Greenall, High Sheriff and Dave Harford.
The Hon. Gilbert Greenall, High Sheriff and Ian Morris.
The Hon. Gilbert Greenall, High Sheriff and Mark Bowen.
Chief Superintendent Mark Turner and CSO Abel.
Chief Superintendent Mark Turner and DS Dugmore.
Chief Superintendent Mark Turner and PC Larkin.
BINGO NIGHT IN AID OF CINEMA FUND AT BRIDSTOW ON SATURDAY
the success of their recent Bingo Night at the Noah's Ark
in Tudorville, Ross Youth Forum are all set to host another
one this coming Saturday at Bridstow Village Hall. There
will be lots of prizes up for grabs and a raffle will be
fund-raising events have been organized by the Ross Youth
Forum who are trying to get funding for a cinema facility
in Ross-on-Wye. This dedicated group of young people are
not merely sitting around whilst trying to obtain substantial
funding from various organizations and a series of fund-raising
events is planned to take place.
you would like to see a cinema facility back in Ross-on-Wye,
why not do your bit and go along to the Bingo Night on Saturday?
It's a lot of fun and you could win some great prizes. Eyes
down at 7:30 pm.
COMPLETE TOWN PLAN QUESTIONNAIRE AND YOU COULD WIN £500
The Ross Town Plan questionnaire has now been printed and
will soon be posted through your letter box. After analyzing
information gathered at several Planning for Real events,
RoWToP designed the questionnaire to find out what you,
the people of Ross-on-Wye want for the town and it's future.
Please take the time to fill in the form, for as well as
making your views known, you could well end up being £500
richer. Once the questionnaires have all been returned,
they will go into a draw and one lucky resident will win
the cash, so watch out for it and fill it in. It won't cost
you anything other than a few minutes of your time.
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of RoWToP packing the questionnaires ready to post through your
BETZDORF VISITORS TO GET A RECEPTION WITH A DIFFERENCE
year marks the thirtieth anniversary of the Ross-Betzdorf
Twinning Association and members in Ross-on-Wye are looking
forward to greeting their 54 German guests on the evening
of Friday, 29th May. Many of the friendships that were forged
at the very beginning of the association are still going
strong to this day.
Town Council always host a Civic reception on the Saturday
for the Betzdorf Visitors' biannual visits to the town,
however, this year the welcome will take on a different
form, that of a cricket match. This idea for this came during
the Ross members' visit to Betzdorf in 2008, when Chairman
of the Betzdorf Association, Herr Dominik Wichmann challenged
Ross to a cricket match and the then Deputy Mayor of Ross-on-Wye,
Mayor John Edwards thought that the challenge should be
taken up. In
view of this, the Committee of Ross Cricket Club have worked
extremely hard to lay on a morning of cricket-based activities
and demonstrations which will also include a super cricket
tea. Just what the Betzdorf visitors will make of terms
like 'silly-mid on', 'leg breaks' and 'maiden overs' will
be interesting to say the least and the day promises to
be a lot of fun. Why not go along and watch the very first
England/Germany Test Match, beginning at 10:30am.
dinner at the Chase Hotel has been organized for the visitors
and their hosts for Sunday evening and as this will be the
30th anniversary of the first visits between participating
families, a special cake, made and decorated by Mrs. Doreen
Woolf will be served after the meal. Once the after dinner
speeches are over, everybody will be able to enjoy some
great live music from the Double Barrel Band.
Monday 1st June members of both associations will travel
to Dewstow Grottoes and Gardens at Caerwent, near Chepstow,
which will be followed by lunch at Dewstow Golf Club. The
venue was chosen to continue the relaxation theme as it
is only one hour's drive from Ross, giving the visitors
plenty of time upon their return to Ross to prepare for
the long journey back to Betzdorf on Tuesday.
Philips, Ross-on-Wye's secretary of the Ross-Betzdorf Twinning
Association said that the Committee of the Ross Association
will welcome any potential new members, especially those
in the younger age bracket. He said that many people are
put off joining because they think it is compulsory to be
able to speak German. Apparently this is not the case as
many members of long standing don't speak a word of German.
It is also a myth that Germans have no sense of humour.
They really know how to enjoy themselves and are great fun
to be with.
anybody is interested in joining the Association or finding
out more about its activities, especially younger families,
can contact the Secretary, Sam Phillips on 01989-563874.
BECKI AND THE BUCKET BAND TO PERFORM AT THE WHITE LION ON FRIDAY
of the White Lion, Dave and Jacqui Newman are pleased to
be hosting a musical event, which will take place this coming
Friday, 29th May. The event is being organized by young
local musician Becki Neale who is raising money for Project
Sri Lanka, a charity that is still working hard to help
to rebuild the lives of Tsunami victims. Becki is trying
to raise the necessary funds to go out to Sri Lanka herself
to help with this valuable work.
is a talented musician and will be performing at the White
Lion with the Bucket Band, a fun and lively band who will
keep you well entertained throughout the evening. The Bucket
Band comprises several local musicians including Becki,
her father, Jim Neale and the extremely talented blues harpist,
is no entrance fee to pay, however there will be plenty
of buckets available for you to donate to the charity.
POLICE TEAM BLOOMS IN SCHOOL
A Community Support Officer from South Herefordshire, keen
to meet youngsters on his patch, has put his horticultural
skills to good use and formed an after school gardening
club at a local primary school.
Paul Leighton, from the Ross Rural Local Policing Team,
ably assisted by PC Wendy Powell and CSO Lisa Austin, started
the club at Kings Caple Primary School a couple of weeks
before Easter with the help of teacher Clare Jones. The
club now has 19 members, aged between 5 and 11, who meet
every Wednesday after school. The pupils are actively engaged
in developing a wildlife garden, growing fruit and vegetables
and planting a variety of shrubs for year-round colour.
Plants for the scheme have been donated by local garden
centres including Premier Plants, Symonds Yat Garden Centre
and Focus DIY of Ross.
Leighton said, 'The youngsters are a great group and really
enjoying what they are doing. Their enthusiasm is exhausting
and their input commendable. It has created a close and
friendly relationship between police, children, parents
and staff which can only have benefits all round.' Mrs Gill
Thompson, Head Teacher at the school said, 'It is important
that the children learn to look after their environment,
know where food comes from and see the process from the
soil to the table. This is a brilliant way of allowing the
police to integrate with the younger community in a very
relaxed and friendly way and build bridges. It's important
that children see the police as being there to help and
protect them, as should we all. Our pond area and school
gardens are now looking lovely and we can't wait to sample
the produce from our vegetable garden. This has been a wonderful
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by Serena Robinson: CSO Paul Leighton and PC Wendy Powell with the
King Caple Primary School Gardening Club.
GOODRICH SCHOOL IS GETTING BETTER AND BETTER
recent Ofsted Inspection of Goodrich C.of E. Primary School
highlighted why 'many more parents wish to send their children
there than there are places available.' The
school was judged to be continually providing a good education
with several outstanding features, as well as having the
potential to soon achieve overall outstanding status.
are full of praise for the school, pointing to the high
quality pastoral care and strong ethos of making learning
fun that leads to pupils' outstanding personal development.
Indeed, one described it as offering 'more of an adventure
than a standard education.' Achievement is good as a result
of a curriculum and teaching that interests and motivates
all pupils. Standards in English and Mathematics, for example,
are well above the national average, whilst those in Science
are also above average. Internal assessments are accurate
and used effectively to provide excellent academic guidance
e.g. in Year 6 English.
and management remains good with the school being able to
provide an accurate picture of its strengths and weaknesses.
The actions taken since its last inspection have been particularly
successful, so that Goodrich School is well-placed to continue
such improvement. Pupil behaviour is exemplary because they
are taught to consider what effect their actions will have
on others. They all enjoy learning, so they concentrate
well and work hard. The curriculum is well-planned and stimulating.
for pupils with special needs are well matched to the curriculum
through the use of carefully thought out individual education
plans. Provision for Early Years is also good. Staff and
governors play an effective role in providing the best for
pupils and ensuring that they all have an equal opportunity
to achieve well. Ofsted's main recommendation is for the
school to continue to make effective use of the information
it gains from its assessment and tracking systems to ensure
that each child maximizes his/her potential.
understandably proud Headteacher, Tony Griffiths commented,
'This report, I think is best encapsulated in the closing
paragraph of the Lead Inspector's letter to pupils : ' Your
school is getting better and better. Mr.Griffiths, and the
others who help him run it, know what they can improve and
how to do it. Most of all, though, they want to make the
school a better place for you, so they listen to what you
and your parents think about school and then set out about
trying to make your wishes come true.' '
in Hereford will be joining their agency partners in High
Town, Hereford on Sunday, 31st May to stage their second
'Welcome To Herefordshire' event. The multi agency event
has a wider scope than that of last year and is aimed at
welcoming and informing anybody who lives and works or intends
to live and work in the county, including those from overseas.
to Herefordshire' is predominantly a public information
day and on hand to supply all manner of information about
living and working in Herefordshire will be Local Policing
Teams from West Mercia Police, members of Hereford & Worcester
Fire & Rescue Service, the Herefordshire Community Safety
& Drugs Partnership and Herefordshire Council. There will
also be representatives from the local NHS, the voluntary
sector, local churches and unions present.
event runs from 10am until 4pm. If you have anything you
want to find out about in relation to local services or
if you have an issue you wish to discuss with a representative
of the agencies involved, please do go along.
SERIOUS UNDER STAFFING IN FIRE AND RESCUE SERVICES
Local campaigner Jesse Norman has highlighted new official
figures which show a shortfall of 68 retained fire-fighters
in the Hereford and Worcester Fire and Rescue Service at
present. At the end of 2008 the Fire and Rescue Service
had 383 posts for retained fire-fighters, but only 315 of
these had been filled, leaving a a shortfall of nearly 20
under staffing comes at a time when the Service is being
pushed through a process of regionalization which is already
£400 million over its £1 billion national budget. The Fire
Brigades Union has recently estimated that £278 million
is being spent on management consultants, regional project
directors, 'change co-ordinators', project assurance directors,
PR staff, civil servants, and agency staff, to handle the
restructuring. Moreover, the under staffing could increase
if new EU rules on working time are pushed through after
the Euro elections ‘On-call’
time in the workplace, even when inactive, would be counted
as working time but retained fire-fighters often double
up their fire work with other jobs, and are on emergency
call. They could have their hours cut as a result.
said, 'Our fire-fighters do a superb job for our community,
helping tackle fires, floods and road accidents. We in Herefordshire
are especially reliant on them in our more remote rural
communities. But there is a significant shortfall in staffing
now. This may well get worse as the failing regionalization
affects budgets, and worse still if the EU working time
legislation is adopted. It is vital that the Government
stands firm on this crucial issue.'
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Norman with Chris Fairley of Hereford Fire & Rescue Service.
TAKE A LITERARY PROMENADE IN A LOVELY LANDSCAPE
and storyteller Fi Benson has a passion for words and a
love of landscape and will be bringing the two together
in a unique, creative writing event organized with the Wye
Valley Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) Unit. The
Literary Promenade, organized for Sunday, 5th July, will
be an inspirational day for aspiring writers of all levels.
will be leading a walk through the Herefordshire landscape
at Goodrich, an area once admired by Wordsworth and Thakeray,
and encouraging people to respond to their surroundings
in a creative way. The river landscape will be used to generate
ideas and sensations which will be used in a practical writing
workshop organized for the afternoon.
based Fi is a well known literary personality with an experienced
background in writing across forms and genres. She has had
considerable success with short stories, poems and plays,
including two commissioned pieces for Cheltenham's Everyman
Theatre. She has organized creative workshops for over twenty
years, and is inspired by the sense of place and passionate
about site specific responses. Fi has worked as community
/ outreach worker for the Forest of Dean Sculpture Trust
with some of her workshops including performance writing.
She has also recently been working on a multi partner project
for a heritage trail within the Forest of Dean.
is a fantastic opportunity for the Wye Valley AONB to encourage
creative writers into our beautiful landscape,' commented
Sarah Sawyer, Community Links Officer. 'We are also lucky
to have a professional, experienced writer lead this promenade,
who is so committed to working with people at all levels.'
unleash the writer within you or to gain inspiration and
creative guidance please contact Sarah Sawyer Wye Valley
AONB Community Links Officer on 01600 710844 to book your
place. Email firstname.lastname@example.org