Cotswold Council Press Releases and Cotswold News

July to September 2015

Back to the Latest News.
“Brilliant response” to recycling campaign in Cotswolds
Kemble and Ewen moves towards establishing a Neighbourhood Plan
Cotswold DC Residents are reminded to complete their Register of Electors Form
Rail boss calls for manifesto for future development of Cotswold Line
Gloucestershire in the running for ‘England's Home of Sport’
Awards to celebrate Young People in Gloucestershire
Cotswold District Council has reported a good initial response to a campaign promoting kerbside food waste recycling
Littering and litter clearance in South Cerney
Cotswold DC assures residents that Weekly Food Waste Collections will Continue
Cotswold residents will gain share of new £3.2 million Central Heating Fund
Council gets tough on Unauthorised Development
100th broadband connection voucher now issued in Gloucestershire
The 2016 Cotswolds Tourism Awards will celebrate the cream of local Tourism Businesses
Hidcote Manor to hold fifth year of Open Air Sculpture Exhibition
A Winchombe resident and town councillor is issuing a call to arms to try and ban heavy goods vehicles
Look out for your register of electors form
Cotswold Careline ‘has literally changed my life’
Men jailed as CDC continues to track down fly tippers
Council to expand social prescribing work to all surgeries
Bakery fined almost £20,000 for food hygiene offences
The Future looks a little brighter for the Water Vole
Affordable homes for local people in Bibury
Young snappers sought to put their pictures on the Map
A collaborative approach to gathering, keeping and sharing the documented heritage of local communities in Gloucestershire
Extra funding available for street Cleaning
Pauline wages war against litter Louts.
Get involved with the UK youth Parliament!
Have your say on our proposals to share services
Fantastic Broadband boost for Thousands of Cotswold Businesses
Residents are being asked to provide their views on the provision of open spaces across Cotswold District
Cotswold District Council News Magazine
April to June 2015 Press Releases.
January to March 2015 Press Releases.

Willersey has a facebook page.                   Home Page | Menu & Search Page      Email us here:-

Cotswold District Council (CDC) Press Releases & Cotswold Newsletters ( and links to other Cotswold websites).

A road in Cirencester

“Brilliant response” to recycling campaign in Cotswolds        Release date: 30th September 2015

Cotswold District Council has reported that demand for free new recycling containers has been exceptional over the last two weeks. This follows a recent campaign which specifically promoted the use of caddies for kerbside food waste recycling but has also provided a significant boost in demand for the Council's entire range of recycling containers.

Since the campaign started on Monday 7th September the Council has received requests from residents for almost 1100 food waste recycling caddies and has also processed orders for a total of nearly 740 other kerbside recycling containers – black boxes for newspapers, cans and glass bottles, blue sacks for cardboard and white sacks for rigid plastics.
The food waste campaign, organised by the Gloucestershire Joint Waste Team, took place across most of the county; waste crews placed stickers and attached notes on all wheelie bins, reminding residents about the benefits of recycling mealtime leftovers, food past its ‘sell-by’ date, tea bags, bones and egg shells.
The increase in demand for all containers has delighted Cllr Sue Coakley, Cabinet Member for Health, Environment and Communities at CDC: “This brilliant response to the campaign speaks volumes about the support we receive from residents across the District when it comes to environmental issues. We expected the focus on food waste to prompt an increase in awareness of all types of recycling and this has certainly proved to be the case. We are now hoping for a real boost in our recycling totals and a big reduction in the amount of our waste going to landfill.”

To order food waste caddies or any other recycling containers – all free of charge – please contact Cotswold District Council on 01285 623000 or place an order directly through our website.
For detailed information about what to place in food caddies, black boxes, blue sacks and white sacks please see.

Current figures across Gloucestershire show that 10,000 tonnes of food waste per year are being recycled and this means that 20,000 tonnes are still going to landfill, currently at a cost of £80 per tonne.
Food waste, which is collected weekly in Cotswold District, along with garden waste (subscribers only) is composted on a farm in the north west of the county, and is used to manufacture commercially available soil enhancer.

Go to top

Kemble and Ewen moves towards establishing a Neighbourhood Plan        Release date: 22nd September 2015

Kemble and Ewen Parish Council has submitted a proposal to Cotswold District Council to have its parish boundaries recognised as a ‘neighbourhood area’ – an important formal stage in setting up a Neighbourhood Plan. Neighbourhood Planning is one of the powers introduced by the Localism Act and should give residents more influence over planning issues within their area. Although they must follow national and local strategic policies, Neighbourhood Plans can give communities more of a say about what goes where, and what it looks like.
The first stage in the process is to designate the area to be covered, after which the fact-finding and plan development really starts. The proposal is to use the parish boundaries of Kemble and Ewen. This proposal is subject to public consultation which will run until 15th October. To comment, please go to the Cotswold District Council website.
Parish Council Chairman, Roger Pettit, said: “Kemble and Ewen Parish Council welcomes the opportunity to involve our local community in this forward planning process. We wish to ensure that the views and wishes of our villagers about future development are fully taken into account, and that our village character is protected and facilities improved.”

More general information about Neighbourhood Plans.

Go to top

Cotswold DC Residents are reminded to complete their Register of Electors Form        Release date: 21st September 2015

Residents in Cotswold District are being reminded to return their register of electors form as soon as possible. Reminders are being sent this week to householders who have not returned their form to ensure that the Council can receive the most up-to-date details for the new register of electors. Every household in the District should have received a household enquiry form from the Council's Electoral Services team at the beginning of September. The information is used to compile a new register of electors which will be published on 1st December.

Residents who have not yet returned their forms are being reminded that they are required by law to do this. The Register is also often used by credit checking agencies and can be required when applying for a loan, mortgage or even a mobile phone contract. Other pitfalls of not being on the Register include not being eligible to apply for certain jobs which require security checks and not being able to open a bank account.

Sarah Dalby, the Electoral Services Manager at CDC, says:
“The aim of the form is to ensure that the electoral register is up to date and to identify any residents who are not registered so that they can be encouraged to do so. People have still got time to return the form and it’s very simple to complete. All you have to do is check that the details are accurate and update it with the details of everyone aged 16 and over living in your household who is eligible to vote.
“It's worth mentioning that the Council, and therefore council tax payers, is having to spend almost £8,000 to send out these reminders – money that could be spent on other services.”
You can confirm or update the information online or by returning the form by post. When you receive your form, follow the printed instructions to update the details.

If you have lost your form, or for more information, help or advice, please contact the Council's election team on 01285 623002

Go to top

Rail boss calls for manifesto for future development of Cotswold Line        Release date: 18th September 2015

The train operator that runs services on the Cotswold line linking Worcestershire and Herefordshire with Oxford and London is set to produce a manifesto setting out priorities for its future development.
Mark Hopwood, managing director of First Great Western, which is changing its name to Great Western Railway, said a manifesto would would provide a clear strategy for better train services and stations. Among the proposals are redoubling more of the line, introducing hourly services to and from London and bringing in more modern trains to make the journey in under two hours.
Mr Hopwood was speaking at the Houses of Parliament, organised by Lord Faulkner of Worcester, president of the Cotswold Line Promotion Group and attended by Rail Minister Claire Perry, local MPs and representatives of councils and local enterprise partnerships. He said: “There is a clear consensus about what people want to see in terms of the long-term development of the route and maybe now is the time for us to put pen to paper and produce a manifesto for the route that everybody can sign up to. Then the Department for Transport will have real clarity on what the community is looking for in terms of strategy in the future.”
Lord Faulkner said “Mark Hopwood's very welcome proposal for a Cotswold Line manifesto was one of many positive ideas and comments made at what was a remarkably well-attended meeting. “I was particularly encouraged by Great Western's wish to deliver an hourly service between Worcester, Oxford and London, and I hope that when the new express trains are introduced in 2017 it will be possible to combine a frequent stopping service with faster services which reach Worcester in under two hours from London.” The meeting heard calls for more double track on the line, which would enable more trains to run and improve punctuality.
Mr Hopwood said he would welcome such a move, especially with the growth in passengers. The number of people travelling to and from London on the route had risen by 9.8% in the past year, well ahead of the 5.9% growth rate nationally.
CLPG chairman John Ellis called for urgent action to improve the railways through Worcester. He said: “The infrastructure at Worcester is one of the biggest constraints we have on both the capacity and reliability of the service. At the moment we're seeing nothing is going to be changed, either track or signalling, until perhaps the late 2020s. I would urge you all to give serious thought to ways in which we can improve the totally deficient infrastructure that exists at the moment.”

Go to top

Gloucestershire in the running for ‘England's Home of Sport’        Release date: 16th September 2015

Gloucestershire has been shortlisted in Visit England's search to find the country's Home of Sport.
The search to establish England's ultimate sporting capital began in June when VisitEngland asked the public to nominate their top sporting experiences and venues across the country. Over the following weeks, more than 2,000 submissions flooded in from across the country, and spanned everything from favourite running routes and personal fitness challenges to stadia holding tens of thousands of fans and even choice pubs for watching the action. Establishing a shortlist was no mean feat – a VisitEngland panel worked through the thousands of claims to select the leading destinations according to their offering of sporting venues and attractions, the breadth of their sporting experiences, diverse and beautiful backdrops, and sporting trivia or claims to fame.

The shortlist of England's top sporting destinations, announced today, is:
    The people's choice (most nominations) - Nottingham
    Sporting playground - Yorkshire
    Biggest claim to fame – Rugby
    Best sporting attractions - Manchester
    Quirkiest sports – Gloucestershire
    Iconic venues and events - London

Susie Hunt, Partnership Manager for Cotswolds Tourism said: “We've been proud advocates of quirky sports since the first Olympick Games were held in 1612. Together with the rest of Gloucestershire, we believe we are England's true Home of Sport representing as we do the true spirit of English eccentricity.”
Maureen McAllister, executive director of the Wye Valley and Forest of Dean Tourism Association, added: “The Forest of Dean is a real centre for unusual pastimes - there’s nowhere else in England where you can see surfers riding 50 foot waves down the river! From surfing the Severn Bore to exploring caves hundreds of meters underground, the Forest of Dean is proud of its quirky sports and we're thrilled to be part of Gloucestershire's bid for England's Home of Sport.”
James Berresford, VisitEngland's Chief Executive said: “Shortlisting six destinations from a pool of 2,000 nominations was a tough job. Between them, these destinations showcase England's diversity as a sporting country. Gloucestershire earned its place in our Home of Sport shortlist with the sheer range of quirky sports and pastimes held here, from football in the River Windrush at Bourton-on-the-Water to the Cotswolds Olympicks at Dover's Hill and Tetbury's Wacky Races. Voting goes live today, and we are excited to see which of our worthy shortlist the public crowns the country's ultimate Home of Sport.”

Read more about the six shortlisted destinations, where you can vote for your favourite. Scroll down on this page to find the voting options.
Voting will close on 19th October, and England's Home of Sport will be announced on 23rd October 2015.

VisitEngland is the country's national tourist board. We work in partnership with the industry to develop the visitor experience across England, plan national tourism strategy, grow the value of tourism in England and provide advocacy for the industry and our visitors.

Go to top

Awards to celebrate Young People in Gloucestershire        Release date: 14th September 2015

Young people, businesses, schools and training providers have been invited to book their place at an awards ceremony which celebrates young people between the ages of 14 and 24.
The third annual 2015 Grow Gloucestershire Showcase Awards ceremony at Cheltenham Racecourse on Tuesday October 20th ceremony showcases young people in Gloucestershire who have kick-started their careers and the businesses or schools who have helped them. Five winners will be announced on the night for categories outstanding work experience student, outstanding apprentice, outstanding support to a young person and outstanding business contribution – plus new for this year for individuals and organisations that go the extra mile to support students through their employment and training.
The evening, hosted in the racecourse's Gold Cup Suite starts at 7pm with a drinks reception and runs until 11pm. On arrival, all attendees will have the opportunity to network with each other whilst enjoying fresh food and drinks prepared by Gloucestershire College apprentices. Mark Hawthorne, leader of Gloucestershire County Council, said: “Last year the evening was a great success. I really enjoyed hearing about all the hard work that businesses have done with young people and I was blown away by the dedication that our young people had shown.
“I'm very excited about this year, we've had more submissions than ever before and shortlisting was not an easy task.
“I'd really encourage young people, schools and businesses to come along on October 20th.” The event is free to attend and you can book your place at the awards through the yes2jobs website.

Go to top

Cotswold District Council has reported a good initial response to a campaign promoting kerbside food waste recycling   Release date: 11th September 2015

Cotswold District Council has reported a very favourable initial response to a new campaign promoting kerbside food waste recycling – and an increase in demand for other recycling containers too.
Since the campaign started on Monday 7th September the Council has already received requests from residents for almost 170 food waste recycling caddies and has also processed orders for a total of over 200 other kerbside recycling containers – black boxes for newspapers, cans and glass bottles, blue sacks for cardboard and white sacks for rigid plastics. The food waste campaign, organised by the Gloucestershire Joint Waste Team, is underway across the county; waste crews are placing stickers and attaching notes on all wheelie bins, reminding people about the benefits of recycling mealtime leftovers, food past its ‘sell-by’ date, tea bags, bones and egg shells.
Cllr Sue Coakley, Cabinet Member for Health, Environment and Communities at CDC, is very encouraged by the response so far:
“This is only the first week of the campaign and the results have been very good so far. A similar scheme in Somerset resulted in a 20% increase in food waste recycling and we are hoping for a similar outcome or maybe even better. I am delighted that many residents have also decided to stock up on other recycling containers when they have contacted the Council for caddies – this should improve recycling rates across a much broader spectrum.
“People who are already recycling their food waste may find it a little odd to see stickers on their bins telling them to do just that. I hope that they understand that this blanket messaging approach is the most efficient means of getting the message across, and it is great that it has prompted a considerable number of householders to review their recycling of other types of waste.”
To order food waste caddies or any other recycling containers – all free of charge – please contact Cotswold District Council 01285 623123. For detailed information about what to place in food caddies, black boxes, blue sacks and white sacks. Current figures across Gloucestershire show that 10,000 tonnes of food waste per year are being recycled and this means that 20,000 tonnes are still going to landfill, currently at a cost of £80 per tonne. Food waste, which is collected weekly in Cotswold District, along with garden waste (subscribers only) is composted on a farm in the north west of the county, and is used to manufacture commercially available soil enhancer.

Go to top

Littering and litter clearance in South Cerney scheduled for 8th - 9th September        Release date: 8th September 2015

Workers from Cotswold District Council's environmental services provider Ubico Ltd will be carrying out litter clearance in the South Cerney area during Tuesday 8th and Wednesday 9th September.
This task was prompted by a resident who drew attention to the amount of litter he noticed when taking walks along the spine road in the village. Cllr Sue Coakley, the Cabinet Member for Health, Environment and Communities, has been eager to respond to his concerns:
“It's in everyone's interests to combat litter in this beautiful part of the country. That is why we would appreciate it very much if residents could report littering of the countryside directly to the Council on 01285 623123. We will then be able to assess promptly whether it requires extra attention.
“I must add that we are always very pleased when volunteers come forward to carry out litter picks in their neighbourhoods. We can supply bags, pickers, gloves and high visibility jackets. We also can arrange for special collections of large numbers of filled bags. Otherwise we can provide stickers so that filled bags presented for collection alongside volunteers' normal waste will be picked up on their collection day. Again, please call 01285 623123 to find out more about this service.”
The Council recently conducted a campaign across the District, emphasising the importance of keeping towns and the countryside tidy. The campaign drew attention to the fact that CDC provides litter bins across the whole District and ensures that Ubico crews empty them on a regular basis.

Cllr Coakley concludes:“If we catch people littering we will not hesitate to take action against them. When found guilty of a littering offence, the penalty can be high – a maximum of £2,500 for persistent offenders – and the damage to a person's reputation can be very costly in many ways when they are named and shamed in public.”

Go to top

Cotswold DC assures residents that Weekly Food Waste Collections will Continue        Release date: 8th September 2015

Amid strong indications that the government no longer plans to reinstate weekly general waste collections, Cotswold District Council has issued an assurance that crews from Ubico Ltd will continue to collect food caddies from households once every seven days.

Cllr Sue Coakley, Cabinet Member for Health, Environment and Communities at CDC, says:
“I understand that the government is probably not going to continue with an initiative to restore weekly collections of residual waste. I welcome this move because I think that it will encourage householders to recycle more. I am, however, very conscious of the continuing need for the Council to collect recycled food waste on a weekly basis as it has a tendency to smell and deteriorate badly when left for a longish period, especially during warmer weather.”
Her comments coincide with the start of a Gloucestershire Joint Waste Team campaign across the county which is encouraging residents to make best use of their weekly food waste caddy collection service. Stickers are being placed on all wheelie bins reminding people about the benefits of recycling mealtime leftovers, food past its ‘sell-by’ date, tea bags, bones and egg shells. Collection crews are also providing information about ordering free food caddies – in Cotswold District, residents should call 01285 62300.

Cllr Coakley continues: “There is ample scope to make more use of the kerbside food waste recycling service – current figures across the county show that 10,000 tonnes per year are being recycled but this means that 20,000 tonnes are still going to landfill, which is an extremely costly and non-environmentally friendly option. I am hoping that residents in this District can help to improve this food waste recycling performance and do their bit to save scarce resources.”
Food waste, which is collected weekly in Cotswold District, along with garden waste (subscribers only) is composted on a farm in the north west of the county, and is used to manufacture commercially available soil enhancer.

Go to top

Cotswold residents will gain share of new £3.2 million Central Heating Fund        Release date: 7th September 2015

Cotswold residents living in the least energy efficient homes in the District should soon benefit from a share of Department of Energy & Climate Change (DECC) funding worth £3.2 million to improve their properties. The priority will be to target homes which are currently heated by ‘off peak’ electric systems, and replace them with gas central heating using modern energy efficient condensing combination boilers.
The bid for the money was led by South Gloucestershire Council on behalf of five local authorities, including Cotswold District Council, and is part of a wider DECC Central Heating Fund competition which will see more than 7,000 households across England benefit from £25 million worth of Government funding to tackle fuel poverty and keep bills low. The competition opened in March when local authorities across England asking were asked to submit plans to DECC to support local people living in homes that are not connected to the gas grid. The focus was on domestic properties that:
• Live in fuel poverty
• Do not have a central heating system
• Possess an Energy Performance Certificate rating of E, F or G

Commenting on the implications for the Cotswolds, CDC Cabinet Member for Health, the Environment and Communities, Cllr Sue Coakley, said:
“We are delighted to hear that we are in line to benefit from this scheme. With winter fast approaching, this could be an ideal opportunity for householders who do not have central heating systems to obtain funding for an installation. This new offer could make a huge difference to the quality of life for residents who have to rely on alternative home heating methods which are not very efficient or cost-effective. We are determined to reduce the number of people in the District living in fuel poverty and this grant could make a big difference by enabling people, especially the elderly, to heat their homes efficiently.”
“At present the fine details are still being worked through and we will provide more information specific to the Cotswolds offer as soon as it becomes available, including how we will liaise with the most eligible homeowners.” Reviewing the national scheme, Energy Minister Lord Bourne said:
“We are determined to help hardworking families keep their homes warmer for less and we recognise that households not connected to the gas grid can pay over the odds for their heating. “So we are taking action by backing these innovative projects that will help the people who need it most by focusing on central heating for the first time – cutting bills and keeping homes warmer. Projects like this show how much the Government and local councils can achieve working together to secure a better future for local communities.”
DECC received more than 80 proposals from more than 100 Local Authorities. The proposals were assessed on how they met the funding criteria which included value for money and how the plans would offer continuing support to cut bills.

The Government will continue to work closely with local authorities to implement their winning proposals, and to make sure that the results inform future work to help bill payers living in fuel poverty.
• - The £25 million Central Heating Fund competition opened to proposals on 27th March and closed on 5th June.
• - In total the DECC received 81 bids across more than 100 authorities totalling approximately £67 million and covering installations in 16,737 properties.
• - The successful bid for Cotswold District Council was made with a number of other local authorities (Stroud, Forest of Dean and Gloucester City) along with the Severn Wye Energy Agency (SWEA), and was led by South Gloucestershire Council. SWEA has facilitated the Warm & Well partnership across the district for over 10 years
• - The funding will help households overcome the significant barrier of high upfront costs by funding the installation of complete central heating systems, including the heating source, pipework and radiators.

Go to top

Council gets tough on Unauthorised Development        Release date: 4th September 2015

Two unauthorised properties in the Cotswolds could be demolished following recent investigatory work by Cotswold District Council's enforcement officers.

The first property, Holly Hill in Puesdown near Compton Abdale, is a residence and an annex which was erected without planning permission. The owner took the case to appeal but a Planning Inspector acting for the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government upheld CDC's Enforcement Notice, meaning that the buildings must now be demolished by May 2016. In the second case, at the August meeting of CDC's Planning Committee Members of the Committee voted to refuse retrospective planning permission for retention of the unauthorised building on land at Orchard Rise, Charingworth, Chipping Campden and to authorise enforcement action which requires demolition of the new house built on the land. The house approved by the Local Planning Authority had two floors and three bedrooms, however the house built has four floors and six bedrooms.

Commenting on the two cases, Cllr Sue Jepson, the CDC Cabinet Member for Planning and Housing, said:
“There are strict regulations regarding development in the District and developers always run the risk of demolition notices being served if they do not have regard to them. This sounds rather drastic, but we need to preserve the integrity of the planning system, which enables professionals to consider the merits of applications across a wide range of criteria, and also gives the public the right to make their views known. In these two cases, the property owners have paid the price for choosing to ignore the rules, and the fact that the Planning Inspectorate upheld the Council's decision when we were taken to appeal shows that our hardline stance is supported at the highest level.”

Go to top

100th broadband connection voucher now issued in Gloucestershire        Release date: 3rd September 2015

Gloucestershire's broadband connection voucher scheme has seen its 100th voucher issued since it started on 1st April 2015.
Local firms with less than 250 employees can apply for grants of up to £3,000 to boost their broadband connection. The scheme, which began in Gloucester, has been extended to include Cheltenham plus certain urban and business/trade park post codes in Cotswold, Tewkesbury, Stroud, and the Forest of Dean Districts. Gloucester City Council manages the scheme, offering businesses a voucher of up to £3,000 to cover installation costs. Businesses can apply as a group to connect bigger or more complicated premises. Charities, not for profit organisations and commercial landlords can also apply. The vouchers also cover home connection if this is the main base of work. Once installed, organisations pay the line rental and VAT.

Cllr Chris Hancock, Cabinet Member for Enterprise and Partnerships at Cotswold District Council, said: “The broadband connection voucher scheme can transform local businesses by boosting communication, productivity and innovation which ultimately leads to more growth. I would urge eligible Cotswold firms to apply for this funding as soon as possible, especially since there are only a few weeks until the offer closes.”
To apply, businesses should enter their postcode to check their eligibility. Businesses can then choose a supplier and fill in an application form, or pick an off the shelf deal with no forms to fill in. Businesses should act quickly if they are interested as the national funding is expected to run out by the end September. All vouchers issued will be honoured, provided installation is completed by 31st March 2016.

Go to top

The 2016 Cotswolds Tourism Awards will celebrate the cream of local Tourism Businesses        Release date: 2nd September 2015

Tourism businesses across the Cotswolds are being urged to enter the Cotswolds Tourism Awards which celebrate both their quality and importance to the wider Cotswolds economy.
2016 marks the sixth year of the prestigious awards which are aligned with VisitEngland's National Awards for Excellence. The launch coincides with an exciting time in the creation of the new Cotswolds Tourism Destination Management Organisation - the official tourism partnership for the area. As well as appointing a Chief Executive, who will join the team in October, work is well underway on a brand new website to replace the old
Partnership Manager Susie Hunt says the annual Cotswolds Tourism awards are a fantastic way to highlight the cream of Cotswolds tourism businesses: “They are about identifying and celebrating the best of the best, and a great way to recognise the hard work and energy our tourism providers put in to this essential industry, worth an estimated £1bn a year to the local economy.”
There are fifteen categories for 2016 and the gold winners from each category will be eligible to go forward to the VisitEngland national awards in January. Business have until Friday 16th October 2015 to enter the awards, and full details and an application form can be found at Judging takes place in late October and November with our local winners announced in mid-November.

The categories for the 2016 Cotswolds Tourism Awards are: Bed and Breakfast/Guest Accommodation of the Year; Self Catering Holiday Provider of the Year; Small Hotel of the Year; Large Hotel of the Year; Holiday Park/Holiday Village of the Year; Small Visitor Attraction of the Year; Large Visitor Attraction of the Year; Taste of England & The Cotswolds Award; Tourism Pub of the Year; Tourism Experience of the Year; Tourism Event of the Year; Visitor Information Provider of the Year; Access for All Tourism Award; Sustainable Tourism Award; and Business Tourism Award.

For further information please contact: or call the Tourism team on 01285 623000.

Go to top

Hidcote Manor to hold fifth year of Open Air Sculpture Exhibition        Release date: 31st August 2015

An exhibition of sculptures created by more than 15 artists will open at Hidcote Manor Garden on September 5th, with a wide range of different types of art work. The pieces are produced in different mediums and styles, from classical stone forms and bronzes, to cutting-edge stainless steel plant forms and contemporary pieces. The Open Air Sculpture exhibition is now in its fifth year at Hidcote and has steadily grown in popularity and scope every year. This year artists are displaying almost 60 pieces of work, positioned and displayed throughout the garden.
All the items of sculpture are for sale to the public and many of the artists have been involved with Hidcote from the very first exhibition back in 2010.
Chris Charman, National Trust general manager, explained: “Hidcote is regarded by many as a work of art in itself, and it has always contained pieces of sculpture in some of the outdoor rooms which Lawrence Johnston created here.
“We are delighted to once again be hosting the sculpture exhibition, which gives our visitors added interest to their visit, and often delights them with a thought-provoking piece, or a whimsical addition to the garden.”
Major Johnston travelled the world on numerous expeditions, collecting the best examples he could find of interesting and unusual plants with which to fill the garden. He is considered to be one of the early 20th century pioneers of English landscape gardening and Hidcote bridges the gap between gardens designed for the great country estates and those on a more intimate scale, illustrating the techniques which can be translated into smaller gardens.
The Open Air exhibition runs from Saturday 5th – Sunday September 27th. Normal admission charges to Hidcote apply. The garden is open 7 days a week, from 10:00am – 6:00pm (last admission at 5:00pm).

Go to top

A Winchombe resident and town councillor is issuing a call to arms to try and ban heavy goods vehicles        Release date: 27th August 2015

A Winchcombe resident and town councillor is issuing a call to arms to try and ban heavy goods vehicles from passing through the town. Judith Petchley is asking residents and retailers to gather accurate data and photographs of the large vehicles as they struggle to squeeze through the narrow streets so it can be put before Gloucestershire County Council's transport bosses. Councillor Petchey said: “We need to give the council statistical and photographic evidence of the number and size of lorries coming through Winchcombe. It seems that many overseas lorries are coming here not to deliver, but just by following their sat navs.
“If a weight restriction is put on the B4236 and the B4078, it would flag up these routes as being inaccessible and help deter drivers and operators of commercial vehicles as using Winchcombe as a short cut.”
This autumn the council is holding a further consultation period for its Local Transport Strategy after which county lorry routes are designated. It's hoped that with enough evidence from townspeople, the council will agree to a weight limit restriction. This would allow only lorries making deliveries to local retailers , manufacturers and Postlip Mill would be allowed if no alternative route was available.
“Many of these heavy goods vehicles are so large they get stuck trying to turn out of, or into the High Street, North Street and Gloucester Street and only recently there have been incidents of damage to cars and buildings as a result. Our Cotswold towns simply were not built to take vehicles of this size and weight,” she added.
A commercial vehicle count is being planned from 7am to 7pm on a date to be arranged once enough volunteers have come forward to help out. Volunteers would do two-hour shifts on several routes around the town to provide an accurate map of vehicle movements and times. Cllr Petchey is also urging residents and retailers to take photographs on their phones or cameras of any HGVs they see coming through the town, as these will be included in the file of evidence. Anyone willing to help in the lorry count or submit photographs should contact Judith on 01242 609305.

Go to top

Look out for your register of electors form        Release date: 24th August 2015

Over the next week, every household in Cotswold District should receive an enquiry form from the Council's Electoral Registration Office. This is the start of the annual canvass which we are legally obliged to carry out every year. We use the information to compile a new register of electors which we will publish by 1st December. When you receive the form, please check the details printed on the inside. If the information is correct, all you need to do is confirm your registration either online, by text, Freephone or post. If you need to make changes, you can register online or by post. You should receive your form during the next 10 days or so, and we would appreciate it if you could return it as soon as possible. If you don't reply, this incurs extra costs because we will have to send you a reminder towards the end of September.
For more information or for help or advice, contact us on 01285 623002

Go to top

Cotswold Careline ‘has literally changed my life’        Release date: 24th August 2015

‘The support Careline has given me has literally changed my life’, says Cornelia, speaking openly about the Cotswold Careline service. She and her husband Chris joined the service in 2006 when concerns for her health increased after she was discharged from hospital.
Cornelia added: ‘The service has been invaluable to myself and my husband and carer Chris. Living in a rural area, it’s so reassuring to know that somebody is there if you require assistance. When we press our button the Careline operators are always quick in responding and are very polite and caring.
‘We receive a courtesy call each morning, when the staff at the monitoring centre check to make sure that we’re ok. They’re always friendly and helpful, and it just gives us that further reassurance that someone is there for us even if we don’t press the button. This extra touch is worth its weight in gold.
‘Having a Careline installed has given back my independence and improved my quality of life, and it means that Chris, as my carer, can have some time to himself knowing that I can call for help at any time. We didn’t have to go through an assessment to see whether we could have the Careline and the installation was quick and simple, and thankfully there was very little paperwork to complete.’
Established over 25 years ago, the low cost emergency monitoring service continues to provide clients across the Cotswolds district and surrounding areas with peace of mind, safe in the knowledge that someone is available 24/7 at the touch of a button. Surprisingly the service is so reasonable it’s available to residents at less than the cost of a large box of teabags per week!
The service is available to everyone and there is no qualifying pre-assessment. It can be tailored to individual requirements, ensuring support and help is always available to those who need it. For more information about the service and to chat to one of the friendly advisors call 01594 812505 or visit their website. Although the service is run from the Forest of Dean it is available across the whole of Gloucestershire. You can view a Cotswold TV interview with Cornelia and Chris by clicking on this link.

Go to top

Men jailed as CDC continues to track down fly tippers        Release date: 21st August 2015

Cotswold District Council recorded two successes in court this week in its continuing campaign to combat fly tipping. Most notably, one case resulted in two jail sentences.
The most prominent case involved David Lee, 38, of Dudgrove Lane, Fairford, who was the director of Rapid Skips, an unlicensed waste disposal company which used the Environment Agency logo on its website and invoices to fool customers into believing that it was a legitimate firm. A colleague of Mr Lee transported 20 tons of building waste from a site in Cheltenham and dumped it in a farm gateway area near Ready Token, Cirencester, blocking access to farm stock and staff. At Gloucester Crown Court on Tuesday 18th August, Mr Lee admitted that he had approved the fly tipping despite the fact that he had previously received a suspended jail sentence for a similar offence. Mr Lee, who has a history of environmental offences, also pleaded guilty to illegally obtaining an electricity supply to run his business, and was sentenced to imprisonment for 14 months.
The colleague who had actually dumped the waste, Keith Mileham, 33, also of Dudgrove Farm, Fairford, was sentenced last month to 30 months in jail for fly tipping, receiving a stolen skip, and other offences. Mr Lee had originally been due to be sentenced at the same time as Mr Mileham, but had absconded during a recess. Prior to the court hearing, neither of the men had responded to CDC requests for an interview or had cooperated in any way with the investigation. They were eventually apprehended by Cirencester Police when they were reported for several motoring offences while driving a skip hire vehicle.
Meanwhile, on Monday 17th August, Stroud Magistrates' Court prosecuted Kevin While, 26, of 97 North Home Road, Cirencester who pleaded guilty to fly tipping and duty of care charges after he unloaded the contents of a transit van - including children’s toys, and books - at the entrance to a field in Ready Token, near Cirencester. Mr While had claimed that he had intended to take the rubbish to a tip which had been closed and claimed that he dumped it in the field because he had already seen an abandoned fridge freezer there. The Magistrates felt that Mr While had displayed totally unacceptable behaviour, and were disappointed that an arrest had been necessary to compel him to attend the Court hearing. As a result, he was fined £750 and was also ordered to pay costs of £500 and a Victim Surcharge of £75 - a grand total of £1,325.
Following the court cases, Cllr Sue Coakley, Cotswold District Council's Cabinet Member for Health, Environment and Communities, commented:
“Once again I am full of praise for the Council's Environmental Wardens – Sue Ponting and George Lager – and our legal team, particularly Principal Solicitor Susan Gargett, for the excellent work they have done to bring these offenders to justice. In both cases, the Wardens worked with the public to trace the fly tipped items, and undertook detailed investigations to trace the culprits. Once the evidence had been gathered, Mrs Gargett joined forces with our barrister to prepare a water tight case. The actions of these people caused great and unnecessary inconvenience to landowners and others. From a Council perspective, it costs tens of thousands of tax payers’ money to remove illegally dumped rubbish and investigate its origins, so it is right that the penalties should be steep when offenders are brought to justice. The message is loud and clear - fly tipping is a crime and we will take action in every case where we have the evidence to do so.”
If you spot someone fly tipping in the district, please keep your distance but do try to record details such as vehicle makes and registration numbers and general descriptions of the offenders. You can then report the offence to the Council using the relevant form on our website or by calling us on 01285 623123.
Be very careful when engaging third parties to take waste away – they are required to have a waste carrier's licence and you should check that this is in order before they begin the job. People failing to exercise this duty of care can be prosecuted if the third party subsequently commits a fly tipping offence.

Go to top

Council to expand social prescribing work to all surgeries        Release date: 20th August 2015

Cotswold District Council has announced that it will soon be extending its successful social prescription programme to all surgeries in the District. At present the Gloucestershire Clinical Commissioning Group can offer a social prescription to patients at various GP practices in Cirencester, Rendcomb and Lechlade, which refers them to CDC for a range of local, non-clinical services and activities. These include: matching patients with volunteer befrienders; offering membership of various social groups; home adaptations; access to community transport; counselling and peer support groups; specialist exercise classes; walking groups; and debt advice. This has been very successful and will now be extended across the District.
Commenting on this development, Cllr Sue Coakley, Cabinet Member for Health, Environment and Communities at CDC, said:
“The programme has worked really well since we introduced it about eighteen months ago, and we have established excellent links with local doctors. What it means is that when GPs are dealing with patients without direct medical needs, or whose medical needs are already well managed, they can refer them to CDC to meet their social, emotional or practical needs. The service is held in high regard and was a contributory factor to the award of £4m worth of NHS Challenge funding to the county-wide provider company a few months ago.
“I am also hopeful that this wider-ranging social prescription programme will dovetail very well with a new Public Health England ‘GP Clinical Champions’ initiative which will promote physical activity for patients. The Clinical Champions programme will enable GPs with a specialist interest in physical activity to provide peer-to-peer training through one-off education and development sessions, incorporating physical activity into patient care and supporting adult behaviour change through physical activity. This and social prescribing should help to promote a more healthy and actively engaged lifestyle, reducing the need for ambulance calls and hospital visits for patients.”

Go to top

Bakery fined almost £20,000 for food hygiene offences        Release date: 18th August 2015

A bakery business, based in Willersey with retail outlets in Chipping Campden and Oxfordshire, has been fined nearly £20,000 for failing to comply with food hygiene regulations.
Appearing at Stroud Magistrates Court on 17th August, La Tradition Ltd – trading as La Tradition - pleaded guilty to charges that they had failed to keep the premises clean and in a good state of repair, did not address a serious infestation of rats and mice, and also breached an Emergency Prohibition Order. In March this year Officers from Cotswold District Council undertook a food hygiene inspection of the business in Willersey. They noted the infestation of rats and mice along with very poor standards of cleaning and disrepair. As a result, an Emergency Prohibition Order was made by Stroud Magistrates Court to close the business. However, Council Officers later discovered the business had defied the court order and continued to operate despite an active rodent infestation. Council representatives explained to the Magistrates Court that the company operated from an unmarked warehouse which was not suitable for food preparation, and had not registered the food business with the Council prior to opening. The Magistrates viewed these matters extremely seriously and believed that the only saving grace was the company's early guilty plea. They levied a fine of £4,000 for lack of cleaning and disrepair, £4,000 (each) for two charges of failing to keep the premises pest free and a further £6,000 for breaching the court order. In addition to this £500 costs were awarded to the Council, and the firm also had to pay a £180 court cost and a £120 victim surcharge. In total fines and costs amounted to £18,800.
After the hearing Cllr Sue Coakley, Cabinet Member for Health, Environment and Communities at CDC, said:
“Officers have had no alternative but to prosecute this company. They must act when a food business deliberately breaks the law, and the gravity of the offence is reflected in the fine awarded by the Magistrates.”

Go to top

The Future looks a little brighter for the Water Vole        Release date: 13th August 2015

A four year project to save vulnerable populations of water vole around Greystones Farm Nature Reserve in Bourton has been hailed a success to re-established the creatures' lost habitat. The vole, famously known as Ratty, in The Wind In The Willows, is one of the UK's most vulnerable mammals having suffered a dramatic decline in population due to loss of habitat and predation by the introduced American mink. The four year project was designed and delivered by Gloucestershire Wildlife Trust and Natural England to enhance habitat so vulnerable and isolated populations could be joined together along the River Windrush. It involved surveying the whole River Windrush system in 2009/10 and then re-surveying 12 sites in 2014 and was only possible thanks to funding from a number of conservation, environment and wildlife bodies.
“Agricultural intensification, unsympathetic river management, drainage of wetland marshes/ponds and building development have all contributed to the loss of the water vole's wetland habitat,” said Richard Spyvee, Living Landscapes project manager.
“The water vole is now so rare that the remaining populations are increasingly isolated and particularly vulnerable to further habitat loss, mink predation, flooding and excessive disturbance. So this work to join habitat together has not only been vital for their survival but benefitted other species such as otter, kingfisher and trout too.”
Natural England's Gloucestershire Team Leader, Peter Holmes, said: “We welcomed the chance to work with Gloucestershire Wildlife Trust. An innovative use of Higher Level Stewardship funding enabled Natural England to contribute £180,000 over four years, to enter or amend agreements with riverside owners to protect and enhance the river for voles and other wildlife, to support volunteer engagement and to monitor the results. The results speak for themselves.”
During the project Gloucestershire Wildlife Trust carried out extensive riverbank management work such as pollarding and coppicing 17.5 km of over-shading bankside trees to benefit marginal plants, which are crucial for providing food and shelter for water voles; installing 12.8km of stock fencing to protect banks from livestock, which can damage water voles' burrows and stunt marginal vegetation; installing hazel faggots to stabilise and improve the structure of river banks and restoring 5.6km of wet ditches to provide more habitats in which water voles can colonise.
The project has benefited from a steadily expanding core of local voluntary support with 164 volunteers recruited so far and who have not only been hands-on at the river bank, but also working as ambassadors in the community. Details of the work have also been shared with community groups and primary schools to create awareness.

Go to top

Affordable homes for local people in Bibury        Release date: 4th August 2015

Cirencester Housing recently added 11 new homes to their rented housing stock - and all of them are now occupied by local residents. Building works at the Arlington Fields site in Bibury began in September 2014 – in line with a developer's Section 106 obligations* - and were completed in April 2015, with a handover to the first resident taking place just days later. All the properties have now been allocated; nine of the homes are rented by residents with a Bibury connection and the remaining two by people from local parishes.
Cllr Sue Jepson, the Cotswold District Council Cabinet Member for Planning and Housing, is very pleased with the outcome:
“The residents at Arlington Fields include three families with young children who will be able to continue living and working in the area rather than moving away. This means that they can call on nearby relatives for support and also enjoy mixing with many friends who they have known since childhood. Additionally, the children can attend the village school, helping to contribute to the sustainability of the community. At the other end of the spectrum, one resident is a retiree who is returning to his roots after working in the horse racing industry for many years; he has been reunited with his family and is also renewing old friendships.
“CDC is committed to providing affordable local homes for local people, and this development is visible proof of our intent. We pledged to deliver 400 affordable homes between 2012 and 2016, and have exceeded that target. However, there is no room for complacency – the need for affordable housing in the District continues to climb as local families find that homes on the open market are beyond their price range. We know that we must continue to work with developers, ensuring that a sensible number of new affordable homes are built for local people.”
Lynne Barber, the Chief Executive of Cirencester Housing, added:
“Cllr Jepson and I visited the Arlington Fields development site about a year ago to cut the first turf, and we were both extremely impressed with the end result when we revisited recently. Cirencester Housing is very proud to be providing rental homes for local people, and we hope to continue building similar small, good quality, rural developments in the foreseeable future. Focusing on the local requirement is the key to sustaining thriving communities that can cater for the needs of residents from all age groups.” * Planning obligations under Section 106 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 (as amended), commonly known as s106 agreements, are a mechanism which make a development proposal acceptable in planning terms, that would not otherwise be acceptable. The common uses of planning obligations are to secure affordable housing, and to specify the type and timing of this housing; and to secure financial contributions to provide infrastructure or affordable housing. - Here are more Section 106 details.

Go to top

Young snappers sought to put their pictures on the Map        Release date: 1st August 2015

Photographer Steve Backshall is encouraging more juniors to enter the OS maps photographic competition Young photography enthusiasts are being given the chance to have their artwork grace the map cover for the Cotswolds Ordnance Survey tour map. Ordnance Survey is appealing for junior outdoor enthusiasts, keen photographers and holiday makers to submit their best photos of the Cotswolds to OS Photofit. Their aim is to ensure the map cover captures the real beauty of the district. To date only a handful of entries have been submitted to the junior competition. Steve Backshall, TV presenter and outdoor enthusiast, who launched the competition said: “There's still plenty of time to enter this money can’t buy competition, so don’t forget to take your camera out with you during the summer holidays.
“I would absolutely love to have one of my photos on the cover of an OS map, but unfortunately I can't enter the junior competition. So if you are out and about in the Cotswolds then get snapping. The Cotswolds truly is a beautiful part of Great Britain and I am looking forward to the challenging job of judging all the amazing photos.”
Full details of the competition, including uploading instructions and full terms and conditions, can be found at The closing date for the junior competition is August 31st.
Rob Andrews, head of media at Ordnance Survey added: “If you're lucky enough to be holidaying in the beautiful Cotswolds this summer, then don’t forget to capture your favourite spots on camera. It can be a great activity to get all of the family involved in.“
Ordnance Survey has already had some stunning entries from the Cotswolds from the adult categories of OS Photofit. These cover the coast and countryside and are starting to appear on the new-look OS Explorer Maps in retailers across the country.

Go to top

A collaborative approach to gathering, keeping and sharing the documented heritage of local communities in Gloucestershire        Release date: 30th July 2015

We are delighted to have received a development grant of £123,300 from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF). We're using this to progress plans that will hopefully secure the remaining funding for an exciting £2.6M partnership project. It's called For the Record. We want to: build more specialist storage space; develop ways to look after 'born digital' documents; provide better on-site facilities; and support local people to document, care for, interpret and share their personal and community archives. We are working with heritage consultants, architects, project partners and community volunteers to test and fine tune our project proposals. We'll be using our findings to support an application for a full HLF grant and aim to submit this in August. Assuming things go to plan, we'll know if we've been successful by January 2016.
You can make a donation to help the project fund-raising campaign, which is being led by our Friends organisation - please click here if you'd like to contribute. We'll keep you posted about other ways to get involved as our plans progress. You can discover more about the project: Getting to grips with “For the Record”.

Go to top

Extra funding available for street Cleaning        Release date: 24th July 2015

Cllr Lynden Stowe, the Leader of Cotswold District Council has allocated an individual allowance of £2,000 to each Councillor to fund additional street cleansing work within their wards. Each elected Member will be able to request the Council's waste service provider, Ubico Ltd, to provide extra services up to the value of £2,000 by a deadline of the end of January 2016. This means that residents can now make requests to their Ward Councillors for additional work such as enhanced street cleaning, grass cutting, clearing up during or after a local event, and installation and emptying of extra litter or dog mess bins (provided they are on land owned by Gloucestershire Highways, Cotswold District Council or a town /parish council.)
Commenting on this extra funding, Cllr Sue Coakley, CDC Cabinet Member for Health, Environment and Communities, said:
“We know that residents place a high priority on the maintenance of clean streets and the timely disposal of unsightly litter. The crews from Ubico Ltd often receive praise for the high standard of their street cleansing across the District, and this new fund will enable the public to benefit even more from their expertise. Any resident wishing to make a request for extra cleansing work should contact their Ward Councillor; they will consider each request they receive and then decide whether to allocate funding from their individual £2,000 budget.” To contact your local Ward Councillor just go to type your postcode here.

Go to top

Pauline wages war against litter louts.        Release date: 16th July 2015

Pauline Farman, a dedicated volunteer, has pledged to make her neighbourhood a litter-free zone. When she retired three years ago - after working as a teacher and a dispenser in a doctor's surgery – Pauline planned to take long walks in the Perrott's Brook and Daglingworth area, and felt that it would benefit the community if she could also use the time to collect litter. As a result, she carries out litter picks about twice a week, and derives great satisfaction from her mission:
“I get a fantastic reaction from the public when they see me out on my rounds improving their environment. I meet lots of very nice people and the police often stop to thank me and check that I am ok. Cotswold District Council's waste company Ubico has provided me with a huge supply of black refuse bags and collects them from my home when they are filled. Additionally, Amey gave me an excellent high visibility jacket to improve my safety, so I know that I have good support from local businesses.”
Naturally, she would welcome the prospect of more volunteers picking up litter elsewhere in the District:
“I would love to see others following my lead in other neighbourhoods. In particular, I think the younger generation can play a vital role in educating their elders about the anti-social nature of littering and how it blights the environment. If we can get this message across to school age children, I believe they can influence others to change their attitude.” Cllr Sue Coakley, the Cabinet Member for the Environment at Cotswold District Council, is full of praise for Pauline:
“Pauline deserves a huge Thank You from the Council and we are right behind her efforts to combat littering. I've taken part in a few litter picks myself and I know that it's hard work but incredibly satisfying when you can see a visible improvement to the landscape. In a perfect world, there would be no need for anyone to undertake this clean-up activity, but littering is on the increase in this country and it's important to publicise the efforts of people like Pauline to counter this dreadful and totally unnecessary trend.”
Anyone who wants to know more about starting a litter pick should contact Cotswold District Council on 01285 623000 – we can provide instructions, gloves, high visibility jackets and waste bags, ensuring that volunteer activity is carried out safely and effectively. Pauline is also willing to tell schools and societies about her work – contact for more details. You can also consult Keep Britain Tidy who provide good information about getting involved as a volunteer.
(Willersey has already held one litter pick this year on Monday 27th April in the evening.)

Go to top

Get involved with the UK youth Parliament!        Release date: 10th July 2015

Message from Alysha Bodman, Member of Youth Parliament representing Stroud and the Cotswolds.
With a passion for politics and social change for young people, I am very proud to be the elected member of youth parliament representing Stroud and the Cotswolds. In times where young people tend to be dismissed, the UK Youth Parliament is an organisation which provides opportunities for young people to use their voice to bring about social change and amplify the unheard voices of young people all over the United Kingdom. We are a democratically elected body of around 600 members who represent the opinions of young people and lobby adult decision makers into considering the young generation’s viewpoints. Last year over 875,000 11-18 year olds took part in Make your Mark; a campaign which determines the youth parliament priorities that we will debate in the House of Commons in November. This is a great opportunity for young people to participate in democracy and have an experience of voting for issues they feel passionate about. The initiative runs from the 12th August until the 9th October 2015 and our target is a voter turnout of 1 million.
Along with the support of Neil Carmichael MP, I have been contacting all schools in Stroud and the Cotswolds and urging them to sign up to the campaign. It has taken both determination and persistence to convince the schools to sign up to Make your Mark and I am pleased to say that schools are taking advantage of this opportunity. Currently, the national priorities determined by the Make Your Mark ballot are Mental Health and the Living Wage. We have been collectively working on these campaigns throughout the year. A youth select committee has been hosting oral evidence sessions within Parliament in order to hear the issues which mental health services face and we hope to use this evidence to improve the services and support available for young people. Moreover, mental health is a pressing issue on our Gloucestershire manifesto and we have recently met with the 2gether trust, an NHS organisation which provides specialist mental health services and we hope to work with them in the future to ensure young people receive better support and education surrounding Mental Health. We deserve to be listened to in our society and I hope to bridge the gap between the decision makers and the young people during my term as an MYP. To find out how you can get involved go to (opens in a new window).
For more information: contact

Go to top

Have your say on our proposals to share services.        Release date: 8th July 2015

Cotswold District Council (CDC) is inviting local residents to have their say on proposals that will reduce our running costs without the need for us to cut services.
The Council is working with the local authorities at Cheltenham, Forest of Dean and West Oxfordshire on the 2020 Vision Programme which is aiming to reduce the cost of providing services through sharing management and staff and making better use of IT. At the same time, we would maintain the full range of services that we currently provide and would also retain our own distinct identity. Elected Cotswold District Councillors would continue to decide what is best for the residents they serve, and also ensure continuing local access to services. As a result of the work on 2020 Vision so far, the partner Councils will be building on their shared HR, finance and payroll shared service which has already been established, and are proposing initially, that the following services would also be shared:
Information Technology      Public Protection      Building Control      Legal      Property      Customer Services      Revenues and benefits
(NOTE: Not all partners will necessarily be involved in each of the above projects as some already have different arrangements.)
Detailed proposals, which include sharing these services, will be going to each Council in September and October this year. Before those meetings take place, the Councils would like to hear the views of local residents.
Cllr Lynden Stowe, the Leader of CDC, said: “We already have good links with the 2020 partner councils through a range of joint working initiatives, which have proven to be very successful. This includes the sharing of a finance, procurement and Human Resources service and associated IT system for the past three years, which is working well. We feel that the time is now right to strengthen our ties by building on these type of arrangements.
“We have looked at other ways to make savings including increasing council tax, cutting services, forming a unitary authority and buying services from the private sector. We have discounted all of those options because we think the 2020 Vision model is the best solution as it will retain a full range of services and still allow us to make our own decisions on the priorities relevant to this District.
“We are now encouraging the local community to let us know what they think about the proposal to share services. We believe that this is the only way to continue providing our current range of services at a time when the money we receive from Government is reducing while our running costs are increasing.”
You can have your say on these changes by emailing CDC at , or writing to Rachael Orchard, 2020 Vision Office, Cotswold District Council, Trinity Road, Cirencester, GL7 1PX. The deadline for comments is Tuesday 15th September 2015.
Please let us know if you agree with this approach? If not, how do you think the savings could be made? We also welcome any additional comments.
More information can be found at the CDC website and hard copies will be available at our reception desks at Trinity Road, Cirencester and the Moreton Area Centre.

Go to top

Fantastic Broadband boost for Thousands of Cotswold Businesses        Release date: 6th July 2015

Over 3,300 small and medium businesses across the Cotswolds will soon be eligible for a non-repayable government grant to pay for communication speeds which exceed 30 Mbps. Working in partnership with Gloucester City Council, Cotswold District Council has just received clearance to extend the Broadband Delivery UK (BDUK) broadband voucher scheme to a wide range of postcodes that will encompass at least 3,300 business premises in Cotswold District. This means that eligible companies can each obtain a grant worth up to £3,000 towards connection and construction charges for technologies that can deliver broadband (with the exception of satellite communications.)
The news has been hailed as a great technological breakthrough by the Council's Cabinet Member for Enterprise and Partnerships, Cllr Chris Hancock:
“Our local businesses do a great job but there is no doubt that many have been hindered by very slow broadband speeds and dead zones across many parts of the District, and there is now this great opportunity for thousands of traders to overcome these problems at no extra cost to them. In fact, realistically, the number of business potentially impacted is larger as our estimates a re based on our business rates database and excludes micro businesses working from home.
“In the best of all possible worlds, some of our local traders could take maximum advantage of this development through a course of free internet training from experts at Google should they do well in the forthcoming Great British High Street awards.”
To apply:Enter the postcode of your business. You hopefully will get a response to say your postcode is eligible. You now have 2 options to apply for a connection voucher.
Option 1: Choose an off the shelf deal designed to make your application simple. No forms. No fuss.
Option 2: Off the shelf deal not for you? Get a quote from a broadband supplier in your area and complete an application.
The next step is to select a registered supplier to work with
Under Option 1 select a package and the rest of the process is then handled through your chosen supplier – there is no application form to complete for a connection voucher.
Under Option 2 select a registered supplier – get a quote for the installation work from your chosen supplier – complete an application form for a connection voucher, and submit this together with your quote to the address on the form. For more details see Broadband Connection Vouchers.

Go to top

Residents are being asked to provide their views on the provision of open spaces across Cotswold District        Release date: 1st July 2015

Using an online survey, Cotswold District Council is currently consulting local people - and visitors - about the quality of areas such as parks, children's play areas and allotments, and how often they use them. Responses to the survey will help shape future development of the District in line with the emerging Local Plan - which sets out growth, housing and economic development until 2031 - and will support funding bids for leisure and recreation projects. The Deputy Leader of CDC and Cabinet Member for Forward Planning, Cllr Nick Parsons, said:
“I would encourage as many people as possible to complete this survey. It only takes about five minutes and asks essential questions about which open space facilities people use the most and least, why they use them and how they travel to get there.
“We're really keen to hear people's views, which will help shape our decision making and strategy and identify ways in which we can improve the provision of open spaces.”
The survey is now online at Cotswold District open space study 2015 until 14th August; printed copies will also be available at public buildings, including local libraries and the Cotswold District Council Offices at Trinity Road Cirencester & Moreton Area Centre.

Go to top

Cotswold District residents magazine is issued when the council needs to consult on big issues or wishes to communicate important news.
Over the last few years, with more and more people using the council website, they have refrained from issuing a newsletter on a routine basis.
The Cotswold News is now produced about once per year at the most.

As well as the Council Website, the latest editions of the magazine are available to download on this page.
The Council values your views about Cotswold News - what you like and dislike and what you find useful and would welcome any feedback.
This can of course include any suggestions you may have for future articles.
The Newsletter is printed on environmentally sustainable or recycled paper and delivered to households by Royal Mail.
It is also available from the Council's offices at Trinity Road, Cirencester and at the Moreton Area Centre.
The total cost to the Council of publishing and delivering to each house in the district is under 20p per copy.

Cotswold News Winter 2014.
How to influence the Cotswold local district plan including housing allocations.

Cotswold News November 2013.
Waste collections and Local planning issues.

Cotswold News August 2012.
Kerbside collection of mixed rigid plastics.

Cotswold News Winter 2010.
Cotswold News Spring 2010.

Here are some other Cotswolds sites:-
The Cotswold Journal has recent Cotswold news stories.
Comprehensive Cotswold AONB background and information.
Useful information for Cotswold visitors.

Willersey has a facebook page.                      Go to top | Menu & Search Page       Email us here:-