Archive for June, 2019

Make sure you’re ‘Air Aware’!

Monday, June 24th, 2019
Pupils from Heath Hayes Primary Academy monitoring air pollution outside their school

On Thursday we launched our brand new Air Aware Staffordshire campaign on Clean Air Day to help raise everyone’s awareness of air pollution.

The good news is that many people are already doing their bit to tackle air pollution in the county, which is great. So far, 15 schools, 6,500 pupils and 1,000 parents in priority areas are already working with us to reduce car journeys to school, as well as persuading drivers not to leave their engines running while parked.

This is a big problem for all of us but by making small changes to the way we travel such as walking or cycling to work and school, we can improve our health through exercise, limit air pollution and lower greenhouse gases.

I would particularly like to thank pupils and staff at Heath Hayes Primary Academy in Cannock who helped launch the campaign and are already very active and making a real difference. Their hard work was rewarded with a nice feature on Central News. You can view it here.

It’s also great to see local businesses like Holland and Barrett joining in and encouraging employees to consider more active travel options or even sharing a lift with colleagues to reduce the number of journeys made.

But there is more we all can do together – if we all make one small change, together we can make a big difference.

The new People helping people fund

Friday, June 21st, 2019
People Power Celebrated in Staffordshire with Launch of New Fund

Regular readers of my blog will already be aware that the way councils are funded is changing with less money coming from government to local councils.

Essentially, we can no longer deliver everything we once did, so while we concentrate on prioritising our legal responsibilities for the most vulnerable in our communities, the way we work with local people needs to change.

To help with this, we’ve recently launched our People Helping People fund, where each county councillor has £2,500 to invest in community and voluntary projects and groups that support people’s health and wellbeing, or on children and families who need a little extra support.

By working differently with our local communities, we can ensure we keep doing the essential things like social care, while people do their bit in their local community to make sure Staffordshire continues to be a great place to live. Our message is that small things really do make a difference, so something as small as talking to an elderly neighbour who may be lonely, or encouraging your family to eat more fruits and vegetables, can add up to a bigger whole.

There are some great ideas on the kind of things you could do on the county council website, just search for “doing our bit” to get access to a wealth of ideas.

By working together and doing our bit, we can all help make Staffordshire an even greater place to live.

Thousands turn out for IRONMAN 70.3 Staffordshire

Tuesday, June 11th, 2019

Thankfully the rain held off on Sunday allowing the fifth IRONMAN 70.3 Staffordshire to run without a hitch.

The highly anticipated triathlon saw over 2,400 people take part in this year’s competition, while communities from across Staffordshire came to show their support.

A first for the event saw competitors take on the gruelling half-marathon up to Stafford Castle (twice!), with the finishing line waiting for them in Stafford town centre.

Of course with a big event like IRONMAN the challenge comes with ensuring it runs smoothly so a big thanks to everyone involved, especially the volunteers who helped make it such a success. A huge well done also to those who took part, it was a tough challenge so well done.

Photos from the event:

Queen’s Birthday Honours for Staffordshire

Monday, June 10th, 2019

It is a joy for me to say a huge congratulations to all the Staffordshire residents who have been recognised in the Queen’s Birthday Honours over the weekend.

Bill & Jean Foster

It really is wonderful to see people from Staffordshire being recognised for their hard work and dedication, and to see such a wide range of areas being recognised. From a foster family who have fostered over 180 children, a scout leader, one of our librarians who’s helping shape national policy, a university principle to a football chairman.

Sue Ball

We really are blessed to have among us many people quietly excelling in their area of expertise, whose contribution benefits us all and I am delighted to see their efforts honoured in this way. I hope people will join me in passing on our thanks and congratulations.

Residents receiving an honour include:

  • CBE for Prof Liz Barnes, of Rugeley, Vice-Chancellor of Staffordshire University, for services to Higher Education;
  • OBE for Dr Christopher Wakeling, of Stoke-on-Trent, Chairman of Historic England’s Places of Worship Forum, for services to Heritage;
  • MBE for Sue Ball, of Coven, stock, services and activities manager at Staffordshire County Council for services to Libraries;
  • MBE for Bill Foster, of Burton-upon-Trent, foster parent, for services to fostering in Staffordshire;
  • MBE for Jean Foster, of Burton-upon-Trent, foster parent, for services to fostering in Staffordshire;
  • MBE for Ben Robinson, of Burton-upon-Trent, Chairman of Burton Albion, for services to the community in Burton-upon-Trent,
  • MBE for Mrs Jane Shepherd, of Stoke-on-Trent, Managing Director of Shepherd PR, for services to International Trade and the community in Staffordshire;
  • BEM for Wilf Burt, of Stoke-on-Trent, Vice-President of Staffordshire County Scouts, for services to Scouting, Young People and the community in Stoke-on-Trent