How To Nominate Someone For Rochford Citizen Of the Year

From the District Council website:

…Rochford District Council’s Citizen of the Year Awards are the perfect opportunity to recognise and acknowledge local people for their valuable work and outstanding achievements. From providing essential services to the vulnerable, to tirelessly volunteering to help others, we want to hear about those extraordinary people that really make a difference to our community.

The Chairman of Rochford District Council, Cllr Mrs Carole Weston, will judge the nominations, and all nominators and nominees will be invited to a special prize-giving ceremony in May.

Cllr Mrs Weston said: “The Citizen of the Year Awards are the ideal opportunity to give special recognition to those who deserve it.

“I’m particularly looking out for those who have gone above and beyond in the public services; have volunteered to provide sports activities; or have given their free time to help with disability or mental health issues.

“Please help me give recognition to the amazing people we are lucky enough to have in our district. I look forward to reading your nominations!”

Nominations are open to individuals and groups located within the Rochford district.

The categories are:

• Young Citizen (under 18)
• Charitable Support (all ages)
• Community Spirit (all ages)

For more information or to request an application form, contact 01702 318128 or CivicOfficer@rochford.gov.uk, or go to https://www.rochford.gov.uk/citizenoftheyear to submit your nomination online. Forms are also available from Rochford District Council offices.

The closing date for entries is Sunday, February 5, 2017.

Could Be A Long Night On Tuesday…

It could be a long night at Next Tuesday’s Full Council Meeting. It includes the following:

  • There is a public question on notice from Mr Alan James about Hockley’s toilets.
  • Plus two questions from Cllr Diane Hoy , one about park homes sites and the other about car parking enforcement.
  • A notification that there will be free car parking on Saturday mornings in council car parks in the run-up to Xmas. (This had to be dealt with as an urgent item without a council vote – the arrival of Christmas seems to have caught the council by surprise.)
  • A big controversial item regarding council public toilets – to transfer to parish councils and/or replace by more modern ones:
It is proposed that Council
RESOLVES
(1)
That all public toilets, with the exception of those at Hockley Woods,
are disposed of either by closure and sale, or through transfer of the
asset upon a long-term lease to the relevant Town/Parish Council. The
disposal of these assets to be completed by April 2018.
(2) That authority be delegated to the Assistant Director, Environmental
Services, in consultation with the Portfolio Holder for Environment and
 the Portfolio Holder for Enterprise, to oversee the closure and sale of
public toilets, as above (1), subject to appropriate public consultation.
(3) That authority be delegated to the Assistant Director, Environmental
Services, in consultation with the Portfolio Holder for Environment and
the Portfolio Holder for Enterprise, to negotiate suitable lease
arrangements with the relevant Town/Parish Councils.
(4) That should the negotiations in (3) above have been successful, the
Investment Board be asked to present a business case in line with the
budgetary principles set out in the appended Options Document for the
installation of replacement public toilets.

An Important Consultation

The district council are running an online survey about future planning issues. You can find the link by clicking here.

This may be everyone’s best chance to influence future decisions – so respond and ask your local friends to do as well. The deadline is 5 pm on October 10th.

Some extra thoughts:
– we hope residents without Internet access will be able to comment.
– we hope that a meeting of the Planning Policy Sub-Committee will meet to discuss this – and in the evening, so that its easy for the public to come and watch.
– We’d like to hear your views on the design of the survey itself – is it nice and easy to use , or is something a bit more detailed required, with more in the way of background information to allow informs comments?

Social Mobility in Rochford District

Most people would agree that, in a ‘good’ country , someone from a poor or disadvantaged background should be able to achieve success in life. We’ve hopefully moved beyond the feudal age. So it follows that in a ‘good’ district , the same also applies. But just how socially mobile are we in Rochford?

There’s some new figures out from the government that are at least mildly interesting on this. Where does Rochford come ? In the top 30 % of districts in England. Which isn’t bad. That’s better than Southend, Basildon and Castle Point. Maldon comes top in Essex.

You may wonder how these things are calculated. Well it’s based on a lot of statistical data. We could say it’s hard to explain, but actually we don’t understand the calculations either. 😉

overall rankings

An Interview With The Leader

Rochford Life has an interview with Terry Cutmore, the leader of the District Council here.

Key quote:

“Yes, there have been complaints. I cant hide from that because we publish them; they arent terrible figures but we have a challenge there. Inevitably in an organisation youd like to deliver a Rolls Royce service but we probably deliver a Ford Focus service and theres nothing wrong with a Ford Focus.”

Nominate your Citizen of the Year – And Group Of The Year

From the District Council Website:

As 2015 draws to a close, the time has come once again to nominate your Citizen of the Year. And this time the awards are even more exciting, with some brand new group categories to choose from!

The Citizen of the Year Awards are the perfect opportunity to recognise and acknowledge local groups and people for their valuable work and outstanding achievements. From helping our Districts children to providing essential services to the vulnerable, and from helping neighbours to tirelessly working in the community, we want to hear about those extraordinary groups and individuals that really make a difference to the community.

The Chairman of Rochford District Council, Cllr Mrs Heather Glynn, will judge the nominations and present the awards at a special Citizen of the Year Awards Ceremony. She said: The Citizen of the Year Awards are the ideal opportunity to give special recognition to those who deserve it.

This year I wanted to do things a bit differently by opening up the opportunity to the many local groups and clubs which do wonderful things for the district. Therefore this years categories include Charitable Group and Youth Group, as well as Individuals Achievement of the Year.

Please help me give recognition to the amazing groups and people we are lucky enough to have in the district. I look forward to reading your nominations!

Nominations are open to individuals and groups located within the Rochford district. The categories are:

Individuals Achievement of the Year (an individual of any age, who lives in the district)
*NEW CATEGORY* Charitable Group (groups of all ages)
*NEW CATEGORY* Youth Group (groups for those aged under 18 years)

You can nominate using the online form www.rochford.gov.uk/citizenoftheyear -For more information or to request a paper application form email CivicOfficer@rochford.gov.uk.

The closing date for entries is 31st January 2016.

Why Does Rochford Have As Many Places With Zero Hygiene Ratings As Southend, Basildon And Castle Point Put Together?

Back last February we wrote about the food hygiene ratings for restaurants, cafes etc in our district. At that time there was only one premises in our district with a food hygiene rating of zero out of five.

But if you look now at the Food Standards Agency website you will see there are now eleven premises in Rochford district with a zero rating – meaning ‘urgent improvement necessary’. There are another eighteen with a one rating – meaning “major improvement necessary”.

By comparison, there are only four zero rated premises in Southend.
There are only three in Basildon.
There are four in Castle Point.

So Rochford has as many places with zero hygiene ratings as Southend, Basildon and Castle Point put together! Is that because hygiene levels are really lower at these places, or are the inspections here tougher?

Aiming For A Healthier Essex

The District Council’s Review Committee met last night to hear two presentations on health and care in Rochford and Castle Point.. They were unusually interesting – although too detailed to summarise here. Also full marks to the Labour chair of the committee, Jerry Gibson, for allowing the public to ask questions at the end.

However there are two points worth making. First of all, an effort is being made to get all GP surgeries in Rochford and Castle Point to open 7 days a week.

Secondly , the County Council has a fairly new website to encourage healthy living – https://www.livingwellessex.org/ Its worth a look.

Benefits Update

From the District Council website:

Intermittent disruption to Revenues and Benefits online services

Date:
Wednesday, 26 August 2015

We are experiencing intermittent issues with Revenues and Benefits online services, which are currently being investigated. These may affect access and/or functionality. The online payments service is unaffected.

We apologise for any inconvenience.

Satisfied In Our Expensive Homes – and Reasonably Happy

According to the Daily Telegraph Rochford District has expensive homes – but also lots of satisfied people.

The data on ‘satisfaction’ comes from the Office of National Statistics. Between 2012 and 2014, people were asked how satisfied they were with their lives , where 0 meant not at all satisfied and 10 meant completely satisfied. Rochford came out well, with an average score of 7.9. We are the most satisfied district in Essex:

satisfied

The survey also asked “To what extent do you feel the things you do in your life are worthwhile?” and on ‘worthwhile’ Rochford has an average score of 8 – a little bit above the national average. Uttlesford and Epping came out ahead of us in Essex.

worthwhile

The next question was “How happy did you feel yesterday? and for that the Rochford average was also slightly about the national figure. Once again, Uttlesford and Epping beat us.

happiness

The final question was: “How anxious did you feel yesterday?” – and for Rochford, the answer was reasonably good, although Uttlesford came out ahead of us:

anxiety

If you want to delve further into these figures for other areas, you can find them here. Though always remember these are only averages, and that not everyone is happy, or free of anxiety….