Big thank you to Cornish businesses for supporting work experience
Thousands of businesses in Cornwall have given young people an insight into employment and careers over the summer by providing a work experience placement.
The past few weeks has seen over 5700 Year 10 and Year 12 students from Cornwall’s schools sampling the world of work. Over 3000 businesses opened their doors to students to do work experience.
‘‘Local employers are incredibly supportive of the Work Experience Scheme in what is an immensely valuable opportunity for every pupil involved” said Gavin Stephens, Cornwall Learning Education Business Partnership, which manages the Work Experience Scheme for schools.
“Schools, young people, their teachers and parents really appreciate the way that employers and businesses support the work experience scheme in Cornwall” he added. “Without this, many young people would not get their first taste of work and the expectations, responsibilities and joys that come with their future career. We want to say a big ‘Thank You’ to them all”.
Students found work experience placements in every employment sector in Cornwall including retail, engineering, primary schools, hairdressers, restaurants, hotels, estate agents, building contractors, hospitals, and with Devon and Cornwall Police.
Typical comments from employers fed back to schools about their students included: “Just absolutely outstanding, the best students I have had in eight years of taking them. They are a credit to the school’; “We really appreciate their hard work. They were helpful and enthusiastic at all times”.
Some students impressed their employers so much that they secured paid part time and summer jobs, and many will be missed following their Work Experience placement. One such student is Sam Weedon, from Wadebridge School.
Tom Irons, Manager of MGC Engineering Ltd said: “It’s not the same at crib time without Sam. It’s been a pleasure having Sam here for work (and life) experience!”
Seven parks and open spaces in Cornwall awarded Green Flag
Seven parks and open spaces in Cornwall have once again been recognised as being amongst the best green spaces in the country as they are awarded prestigious Green Flags.
The Green Flag national award from environmental charity Keep Britain Tidy recognises and rewards the best parks and green spaces across the country. The award is a sign to visitors that the space boasts the highest possible standards, is beautifully maintained and has excellent facilities.
The Council’s Green Flag winners are:
Edwina Hannaford, Cornwall Council’s Portfolio Holder for Environment, Heritage and Planning said, “Huge congratulations to everyone involved with all of our Green Flag winners. This is a prestigious award and I’m delighted that seven popular parks and open spaces in Cornwall have retained their Green Flag status. This is great recognition for staff and volunteers who work so hard to make sure these well used and much loved locations can continue to be popular with local residents and visitors of all ages.”
Cornwall chosen to undertake Rewiring Licensing project
Cornwall Council has been chosen to examine how the complicated licensing system in England can be simplified with the aim of creating a single business licence.
The Council has been awarded grant funding from the Better Regulation Delivery Office (part of the Department for Business, Innovation & Skills), to carry out a pathfinder project, the only one in England, to explore how the Local Government Association’s Rewiring Licensing proposals can work in practice to create a new licensing blueprint.
At the moment, businesses have to apply to their local authority for a variety of licences. The aim of this project is to examine what changes councils need to make for it to be possible for a single business licence to be issued on a licence-for-life basis; to simplify the process of setting up businesses and make it easier for businesses to work with councils.
The grant will give Cornwall Council the opportunity to map out existing licensing workflows and understand what changes would need to be made to deliver the objective of a single business licence.
Various services within Cornwall Council issue around 8,000 to 10,000 business authorisations a year. This includes services such as licensing, food and Health & Safety, environmental protection, Street Works, housing, Cornwall Fire & Rescue Service, Trading Standards and registration. Having to make several applications to a number of various Council services can impact on the local economy and inhibit growth.
Cornwall Council Head of Public Protection & Business Support Allan Hampshire said: “The project is expected to take six months and will include mapping a typical set of activities for both start-up and established businesses. We will also want to work with local businesses and trade associations to better understand their needs in terms of a simplified licensing system. We will be exploring options that will work better for councils and businesses such as a single licensing application form, a council licensing single point of contact, online accessibility and flexible payment options.”
Business Minister Matthew Hancock said: “This Government is ripping out the red tape that holds firms back. We’ve scrapped over 1,000 regulations, saving firms £1.5 billion and we’re on track to be the first government in modern history to leave office with fewer regulations than when we came in.
“I am delighted that a simplified licensing system is being examined by Cornwall Council; this would help free businesses from unnecessary bureaucracy and enable them to focus on creating growth and jobs.”
Cornwall Council cabinet member for homes and communities Geoff Brown said: “Our successful award application demonstrates that this Council is highly regarded and I am delighted that we have been chosen to spearhead this important piece of work.”
Power to the people of St Eval through creation of Neighbourhood Development Plan
St Eval has become the first parish council in Cornwall to produce its Neighbourhood Development Plan for formal consultation.
Local councils across the UK were given the powers to develop Neighbourhood Development Plans as part of the 2011 Localism Act. Since then more than 60 parishes across Cornwall have begun work on developing plans for their local areas.
St Eval became one of the first local councils to formally designate its parish as a Neighbourhood Development Area following concerns over Ministry of Defence (MoDʼs) plans to sell some of its land at Trevisker. The proposal to develop a Neighbourhood Development Plan was seen by both the parish council and the local community as an opportunity to shape future development in the area at the same time as safeguarding and enhancing valued characteristics.
Since then St Eval has successfully consulted local residents on the draft Neighbourhood Development Plan through extensive community engagement events, questionnaires and social media sites. The plan was then submitted to Cornwall Council for legal compliance checks.
The next stage of the process involves a formal consultation process carried out by Cornwall Council. This began on 16 July and will run until 27 August. Once this has been completed the Plan will move forward to the independent examination in September, with a referendum being carried out in the autumn.
Julie Baker, Chair of St Eval’s Neighbourhood Development Plan, said “We are extremely pleased to have reached this milestone as it represents almost three years of hard work by the local community and our supporters. It is a big step towards our vision of producing a balanced and sustainable neighbourhood plan which will reflect our aspirations for future development within the parish. We look forward to moving into the next important phase".
Edwina Hannaford, the Council’s Cabinet Member for Environment, Heritage and Planning, said “I congratulate the community of St Eval on being so advanced with their NDP. Neighbourhood planning is a powerful tool that puts local residents in the driving seat in planning for the future of their community.”
Story posted 25 July 2014
Visit Cornwall collaborates with Finistère to attract new overseas visitors
Earlier this month a delegation representing Visit Cornwall travelled to Finistère in Brittany to strengthen their partnership with Finistère Tourisme – a counterpart tourism development agency - and to attract new, high spending overseas visitors.
The visit started with a meeting at Brittany Ferries HQ in Roscoff, to showcase Cornwall as a tourism destination among the French and German markets. Over the summer, the ferry company is proposing one-day car tours in Cornwall. This type of package works well for the company but there are issues with a lack of accommodation availability for groups and longer stays. Over the next few months, Visit Cornwall will help them identify additional accommodation providers in Cornwall and provide some new visual content for the Brittany Ferries website and on board information points.
During a 3-day programme of visits and meetings, Visit Cornwall was presented with local initiatives to develop the promotion of religious and maritime heritage. At the Abbey of Landevennec - monastery ruins from the late 5th century - they are testing a new approach to site interpretation with some potential joint opportunities with Cornwall for developing augmented reality applications that can revive historical buildings.
A meeting with the Observatory on maritime heritage of the University of Western Brittany demonstrated their integrated approach to preserving and promoting elements of maritime heritage (docks, boats, fishermen communities, chapels, etc) whilst enabling economic development in historical harbours.
Finistère Tourisme shared its knowledge of developing “tourism routes” to promote heritage, specifically heritage harbours, lighthouses, painters and churchyards. It is focusing on awareness and understanding of the offer to reinforce its visibility among visitors - selecting the most iconic and impressive sites; consistent signage along the trail; site interpretation; targeted marketing.
Finistère Tourisme and Visit Cornwall have agreed to join their expertise to better promote and market their complementary maritime and cultural tourism offers. The two tourism development agencies will share content and data from their digital and marketing tools; jointly work on the promotion of the high-end tourism offer; and look at European calls for proposals supporting international projects in the sector.
Cornwall Council cabinet member for economy and culture Julian German said: “I am convinced that Cornwall and Finistère can learn from one another. In Cornwall we can learn how to better promote cultural tourism trails which attract high value visitors and will have a positive benefit for our economy and those working tourism. I look forward to joint projects being developed for the benefit of one and all.”
Malcolm Bell, Head of Visit Cornwall said: “There are many similarities between Finistère and Cornwall and our Breton friends were keen to learn of our digital marketing and social media activities as well to learn about the success of great Cornish food and drink work and our high quality accommodation. We have agreed to increase our collaboration and joint working for the benefit of Cornwall and Finistère alike.
Story posted 25 July 2014
Health Checks focus on farmers
The Outreach NHS Health Checks team in Cornwall have been getting mud on their boots recently, carrying out health checks with farmers.
The team, which is part of the national free NHS Health Checks programme, has been targeting groups of people who traditionally keep their health problems to themselves and often only visit their doctor when symptoms are well advanced, making their conditions harder to treat successfully.
They have recently had great success setting up health checks with fishermen, and are now reaching out to farmers over the age of 40, with partners Mole Valley Farmers. Paul Tippett, branch manager at their St Columb store, has provided a quiet space, with signage to draw in customers. So far, they have carried out 88 Health Checks over the last 3 months, and the next dates are 12 August at the St Columb store, and at the Camelford Show on 13 August.
Julie Edwards, Head of Communications explained the reason Mole Valley Farmers want to support this Health Checks programme: “As a farmer-owned business, we think this is a wonderful initiative and we are very pleased to be able to support the NHS Health Check programme in this way. We are very aware of the pressure experienced by farmers running busy businesses and often, people will ignore health issues because of time constraints.
“Therefore, having the opportunity to be able to take a range of health check tests in a relaxed environment and discuss the results with a professional is a really positive step and will hopefully reduce health issues and possibly save lives in the future.”
Mole Valley Farmers also invited the Outreach Team to share their stand at the Royal Cornwall Show. 30 checks were carried out for farmers and their families, and five people are being given support to improve their lifestyle, based on the results of the tests carried out.
The Health Checks examine several elements – height, weight, body mass index, blood pressure, diabetes, and cholesterol, which are used to calculate the risk of developing heart disease, stroke, diabetes, kidney disease and dementia.
The check itself takes about 20 minutes and includes a discussion of the results and any steps which can be taken, for instance to reduce cholesterol or blood pressure. These conditions can often be prevented, even if there is a family history. In some cases the person may be advised to visit their GP if their results indicate more serious problems. This happens in around 11 per cent of Health Checks and is a measure of the success of the programme in reaching more people who traditionally don’t take their health problems to their doctors.
Jim McKenna, Cornwall Council Cabinet Member for Health and Adult Care, said: “‘Health Checks are an important part of the strategy to improve the health of people in Cornwall. Working together with Mole Valley Farmers in this way helps us to reach people who might otherwise not see a doctor until it’s too late, so we’re very pleased to promote this partnership.”
Felicity Owen, Director of Public Health, said: “‘We are delighted to be working with Mole Valley Farmers to target this group of people, as part of our Health Checks Programme. Helping individuals to make good choices about their lives and health is an important part of the work of the Health Promotion Service, and improving people’s health and wellbeing in this way reduces cases of heart attack, stroke, diabetes, and cancer.”
The Health Checks team will be at Mole Valley Farmers, St Columb on Tuesday 12 August, from 9am to 4pm, or you can catch them at the Camelford Show on Wednesday 13 August. Talks are also underway with Farm Cornwall, which is helping the team link with the cattle markets in both Liskeard and Truro, with a view to offering Health Checks at both sites.
For more information about Health Checks, see NHS Choices or call the Public Health Information Line – PHIL – on 01209 215666 or the Outreach Team on 01872 248584.
Story posted 25 July 2014
New recruits for Hayle Community Fire Station 'pass out' in Penzance
A passing out celebration for eight new firefighters who have joined Cornwall Fire and Rescue Service and are to be posted at Hayle’s new Community Fire Station when it opens later this year, has been held at Penzance Community Fire Station.
An invited audience, including proud friends and families, local Cornwall Council members and representatives of Hayle Town Council witnessed the presentation of certificates to the new recruits by Chief Fire Officer Des Tidbury and the Mayor of Hayle, Mr Graham Coad.
Geoff Brown, Cornwall Council cabinet member for homes and communities said: “I was delighted to join local members John Coombe and John Pollard together with family and friends of the new crew of 8 firefighters as they passed out at Penzance station after an intensive training period. This was a great occasion and heralds the first truly new fire station in Cornwall for 66 years. It was fantastic to see the pride in their achievement as they prepare to safeguard their community. My thanks to family and employers whose support will enable them to serve Cornwall.”
The eight new recruits showed off their skills and took part in two drills featuring a car fire and a rescue from a house fire.
The evening also included the official naming of a new fire appliance, “St Michael” which was blessed by Rev Julyan Drew, and music from Hayle Town Band.
Story posted 25 July 2014
Cornwall Best Bar None 2015 Scheme launched in Penzance
The launch of the 2015 Cornwall Best Bar None Scheme took place at Sound Nightclub, Penzance on Tuesday 22nd July. Sound retained the title as the overall winner of Cornwall Best Bar None 2014 for the second year in a row and was runner up in the National Best Bar None competition last November.
The Best Bar None Scheme is open to all clubs, pubs and bars in Cornwall and the owners and managers of licensed premises from across Cornwall attended the launch event including those that are interested in applying for accreditation this year, as well as already accredited venues including Sound, The Vault, Eclipse Nightclub and The Tremenheere who won ‘Best Large Pub’ in 2014 (one of 10 J.D. Wetherspoon accredited premises). Other partners were also present including the Cornwall Licensing Forum Cornwall and Parish Councillors, Cornwall Council Officers, Devon and Cornwall Police, Cornwall Fire and Rescue Service and representatives from the training sector.
They were welcomed by Cornwall Councillor Pat Harvey, who has supported the Scheme since it was first introduced in 2010. Cllr Harvey encouraged involvement in the 2015 Scheme saying “The aim of Cornwall Best Bar None, in addition to promoting excellent management practice, is to help create a safe and enjoyable social environment for our residents and visitors to enjoy” Other speakers included Lisa Vango from the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner and Jez Bayes, Alcohol Strategy Lead for Cornwall and Robert Matthews providing a trade perspective.
The Cornwall Scheme meets the standards set by National Best Bar None and is managed by the Cornwall Licensing Forum that includes representation from Cornwall Council, Cornwall Fire & Rescue Service, Devon & Cornwall Police and licensed trade representatives. To become Best Bar None accredited, licensed premises will need to meet minimum standards for licensing legislation including prevention of crime and disorder, public safety, prevention of nuisance, health and safety and protection of children.
Venues that become accredited will be entered into a competition to be voted best in category and ‘Best Bar None’ for the year.
Story posted 25 July 2014