18 November 2013
Another inexpensive chance to get your dog microchipped
Dog owners are being given another opportunity to have their pets microchipped for the special price of £6.
Dog warden Rachel Thompson will be at Holbeach United Social Club in Park Road, Holbeach on Tuesday, November 26, from 9am-noon.
Microchipping of dogs will soon become compulsory in England and the district council’s dog warden Rachel Thompson is qualified to carry out the quick procedure.
It can cost up to £20 but is being offered at the special introductory price of £6.
A council spokesman said: “Rachel microchipped 13 dogs during an advice day she held on Spalding Market earlier this month.
“Microchipping vastly increases the chances of a lost dog being returned to its owner.”
There is no need to book for the Holbeach event, just turn up on the day.
31 October 2013
Areas of district spick and span after council-led Litter Blitz campaign
South Holland now has some much tidier areas after the district council’s Litter Blitz campaign.
The rubbish collected at the series of seven litter-picks filled 47 bags. Other discarded stuff which was disposed of included an armchair, half a dining chair, a suitcase and a vacuum cleaner.
With cans, plastic bottles, glass bottles and cardboard and paper the most popular items, an estimated 70 per cent of the litter collected was recyclable. The most popular items lying about were crisp packets and sweet wrappers.
Across the seven venues, 22 people took part – a mix of council staff, councillors and volunteer members of the public.
Two public helpers earned prizes for finding a special bottle dropped as part of the campaign. Annika Kaloczi won a £25 book voucher at the litter-pick near Fulney skate park and John Forrest Thornhill won a £10 WHSmiths voucher at Memorial Park, Sutton Bridge.
Laura Simpkins, the district council’s Waste and Recycling Support Officer, said: “We had some pretty poor weather at times so I’m really pleased that people turned out to tidy their communities.
“Thank you to everyone who took part – the amount of rubbish cleared proves that it was a big success.
“The challenge to everyone now is to try and keep those areas as tidy as possible and have pride in them.”
The other venues for the Litter Blitz were Monks House Lane Playing Field in Spalding, Carter’s Park in Holbeach, Snowden Field in Crowland, Cinder Ash Park in Long Sutton, and Flinders Park in Donington.
An armchair was among the discarded items around Fulney Skate Park
South Holland District Council’s Waste and Recycling Officer Laura Simpkins led the campaign
Just some of the helpers who cleared Memorial Park, Sutton Bridge
South Holland District Council deputy leader Paul Przyszlak and Jenny Alcock at Snowden Field, Crowland
25 October 2013
Litter Blitz Updates
If you would like to get involved with the forthcoming events, please contact:
Laura Simpkins - Waste and Recycling Support Officer at South Holland District Council on 01775 764888
Sutton Bridge (15 October):
This litter pick was a great success. We had 6 volunteers from the local community litter picking for just over 2 hours in the Memorial park and the park just off King Street. We collected 20 bags of rubbish, a vacuum cleaner and a suitcase! 5 of the volunteers had come along from Sutton Bridge Bloomers. The winner of the golden bottle was a local man called David who lives in Sutton Bridge. He won a £10 WHSmiths voucher.
Donington (21 October):
Unfortunately the rain put people off coming to this litter pick and no one attended this event. The litter pick still went ahead and I litter picked Matthew Flinders Park and the Teen Park on my own which took an hour and a half. Donington wins the prize for being the cleanest place I have visited so far as only 2 bags of litter were collected plus two bags that were found dumped in a ditch by the teen park.
Long Sutton (22 October)
Unfortunately no one turned up to this event but that was probably due to the bad weather! However, Laura did the litter pick on her own. One bag of litter was collected from Cinder Ash Park - it was already very clean!
Crowland (23 October)
2 people came to the Crowland litter pick. A local councillor and a councillor's wife. 3 bags of rubbish were collected in total - mainly crisp bags and pop cans. A lot of the rubbish had blown into the dykes around Snowden fields and it was a hard job reaching some items with our litter pickers!
Spalding, Monks House Lane (24 October)
2 councillors came to this event. No members of the public showed up, even though the sun was shining! 4 bags of litter and half a chair were collected from the playing field and the surrounding area.
Pictures from Sutton Bridge Litter Pick
15 October 2013
Discarded armchair is biggest find as Litter Blitz gets under way
Thirteen bags of rubbish and an armchair were removed from areas covered in the first South Holland District Council litter blitz.
The series of seven litter-picks across the district began in Spalding last Sunday in soggy conditions. The skate park and Fulney Avenue areas were cleaned up by a mixture of volunteers and district council staff and councillors.
And there was a £25 voucher prize for one young volunteer on the day.
Litter Blitz is a project by the district council’s Environmental Services team.
Waste and Reycling Support Officer Laura Simpkins said: “Thirteen bags of rubbish and an armchair was certainly a successful start to the campaign, despite the weather.
“The idea behind this campaign is that areas across the district are blitzed by the community and hopefully they will stay that way – nobody wants to live, work or spend leisure time in untidy areas.
“Anyone is invited to come along on the day and help out. We’ll supply the equipment.”
Another litter-pick was held at Memorial Park, Sutton Bridge on Tuesday and more are planned for next week to coincide with schools’ half-term holidays.
They are: Monday - Flinders Park, Donington 1pm; Tuesday - Cinder Ash Park, Long Sutton 1pm; Wednesday - Snowden Field, Crowland 10am; Thursday - Monks House Lane Field, Spalding 2pm; Saturday, October 26: Carter’s Park, Holbeach 10am.
There are vouchers to be won at each venue.
Some of the group, which included members of the public and district council staff
and members, at the first Litter Blitz, in Spalding last Sunday
18 September 2013
Enterprise Day and Business Awards
The Spalding Area Chamber is organising the South Holland Enterprise Day and Business Awards event on 20th November at Springfields Events Centre, Spalding.
The South Holland Business Awards give you the opportunity to be recognised for your business successes.
Wouldn’t it be great to be recognised for all the hard work and the achievements of your team?
The awards are open to both members of the Chamber and non-members (entry criteria applies) and are totally free to enter.
One of the key factors when considering entering is the impact of being crowned a top business, as all winners and runners up of the awards can benefit from significant local press coverage, as well as marketing and promotional activity through the Chamber.
Each finalist will also receive one free ticket, and 50% off up to 2 further tickets for the awards event.
This year’s awards are split into six categories which are listed below:
Business of the Year Award 2013 – Sponsored by Butters Group
Apprentice of the Year Award 2013 - Sponsored by Boston College
Customer Care Award 2013 – Sponsored by Chattertons Solicitors
Business Innovation Award 2013 – Sponsored by Duncan & Toplis
Supporting the Community Award 2013 – Sponsored by Definitions Health & Fitness Gym
Best use of IT & Communication Award 2013 – Sponsored by South Holland District Council
Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org to apply.
13 September 2013
Family fun in Store at Spalding Pumpkin Festival
There's no better way of embracing the onset of autumn than the annual Spalding Pumpkin Festival.
This year it's on Friday 11th October, and will be another spectacular community event, celebrating the local harvest.
The event – which has been a popular date on the calendar since 2000 - is organised by South Holland District Council, sponsored by Spalding firm David Bowman Pumpkins Ltd and supported by Spalding Welland Centenary Rotary Club and Spalding Lions.
As always, local schools and groups are encouraged to take a big part in the run-up to the event and in the parade itself.
Each year Mr Bowman, who is Europe's largest producer of pumpkins, donates thousands of the fruit to about a dozen schools across the district in advance of the event.
Pupils then have fun carving and decorating them, with some schools holding competitions for the best creations.
David said: "I'm very pleased to be able to work with schools again to celebrate the pumpkin harvest and I'm looking forward to seeing what they come up with this year."
Youngsters are then able to take their creations along to the big day, with a pumpkin lantern parade on foot starting from Sheep Market at 6.30pm. Led by the pumpkin coach with Spalding Flower Queen Inca Honnor on board, the parade winds its way around town centre streets before finishing in Market Place.
The climax of the night is a fireworks display from the top of the South Holland Centre.
There will be a charity market all day, street entertainment, activities and competitions throughout the day.
And, of course, with pumpkins taking centre stage there will be ideas, recipes and cooking demonstrations on how to get the best out of the tasty treat when you get home.
Cllr Nick Worth, district council portfolio holder for Community, said: "This will be a great day out for all the family. Lots of unusual, healthy and fun activities to take part in as well as joining in the main pumpkin parade in the evening. Not to be missed!"
For more details on the event, contact South Holland District Councils Community Development Team. Email email@example.com or phone 01775 761161.
13 September 2013
Energy Efficiency Work Carried out on Street Lights
A scheme to convert South Holland District Council’s street lighting and make 58 per cent savings on energy costs is under way.
Its maintenance contractor - E.ON Highways Lighting at Sleaford - has identified a convertor tray that can be installed inside existing street lighting lanterns.
It replaces the old 35 watt sodium lamps and control gear with new 24 watt PL lamps and gives a whiter light as well as making substantial energy savings at a minimum cost outlay.
This also saves costs on the district council’s capital investments by reusing existing fittings while reducing its carbon footprint.
There are about 2,000 street lights for which South Holland District Council is responsible. More than half of the 1,309 which can be converted have been done so far.
6 September 2013
Appreciation for very positive reaction to waste collection changes
South Holland District Council is thanking residents for a very positive response to changes last month to their waste and recycling collection.
About 6,000 households had their collection day altered for black and/or green sacks in a move which brought about efficiency savings through route changes and the use of one fewer vehicle.
In another change designed to improve collection rates, the bank holiday at the end of August was the first time the council had collected on a Monday. Previously, residents had been asked to put out their sacks two days earlier.
Cllr Roger Gambba-Jones, portfolio holder for waste management, said: “These changes were brought in to make efficiency savings and increase collection rates.
“It has gone remarkably well and the result of everyone’s endeavour will be seen in due course.”
The district council carried out an extensive communications programme about the changes, including leaflet drops to households.
A council spokesman said: “We would like to thank the residents affected by the changes for making the transition so smooth.
“We did receive complaints from a very small number of residents who were unaware of the collection day change due to not receiving a leaflet, for which we apologise, but on the whole it went extremely well.”
The Christmas and New Year collections are not included in the new bank holiday collection arrangement.
5 September 2013
Drive to bring empty homes back into use
South Holland District Council is part of a new project designed to help owners of empty homes bring their property back into use.
Over the coming weeks the council will be writing to all owners of empty houses to offer advice and assistance designed to ensure that the most is made of the district’s housing resources.
And for those homes which need work, the council is now a partner in a new national scheme which enables owners to take advantage of low-interest loans to pay for it.
Launched on September 1st, the National Empty Homes Loan scheme provides loans of up to £15,000, repayable over a maximum of five years. South Holland District Council is acting as a local partner of the national scheme, and will be assisting empty property owners through the process of applying for funds.
The loan scheme presents owners of vacant property with the opportunity to bring their property up to a lettable standard, enabling them to generate an income that will help cover the cost of the loan repayments.
Cllr Malcolm Chandler said: "Tackling empty homes is a key priority for South Holland District Council, and this new proactive approach to assisting owners through advice and access to loan finance will help us in this area of work.
Furthermore, any efforts to bring empty homes back into use reduces the pressure on the council’s housing register."
The National Empty Homes Loan Scheme, funded as part of the Community Grants Programme and to be delivered via the charity Empty Homes.
Anyone wanting to register an interest in taking part in the scheme or who knows of a property which has been empty for a while is asked to contact the council’s Private Sector Housing team on 01775 761161 or via firstname.lastname@example.org
22 August 2013
Deputy Chief Executive to leave South Holland District Council
The Deputy Chief Executive of South Holland District Council is leaving to take up a new role.
Mark Stokes, who also covers Breckland District Council under the councils’ acclaimed shared management system, is to become Chief Executive for the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner in Norfolk (subject to ratification).
Mark said: “This has not been by any means an easy decision to make, having enjoyed more than 25 years working within local government.
“Not only has local government provided me with many opportunities, it has afforded me the privilege of working with some wonderful people both in South Holland and Breckland.
“What has made my job so rewarding has been rising to the challenges that local government has faced over the years, and the sense of achievement it has given me, and more recently working as part of a high performing shared management team, recognised at a national level as best practice.”
A report proposing to recruit to the Deputy Chief Executive role will go before full council at both authorities in September. It will also present the councils with options as to how to proceed towards a permanent Chief Executive appointment.
Trevor Holden, who is Chief Executive for Luton Borough Council, has been Interim Chief Executive at South Holland and Breckland since Terry Huggins’ departure in February.
22 August 2013
Bank holiday waste and recycling collections made simpler
Households in South Holland whose waste and recycling collection day is Monday will be unaffected by bank holidays in future.
Until now, those residents were expected to put out their black or green sacks two days earlier – on the Saturday before the Bank Holiday Monday.
Unfortunately, that led to only about 30 per cent of the normal weight being collected and an abnormally large collection the week after the bank holiday.
Consequently, the Saturday collection resulted in dissatisfaction from customers and inefficient collection, plus additional pressures on the Monday after bank holiday.
Now, to improve efficiency, South Holland District Council has brought in an easier arrangement for the one in five households with a Monday collection. Crews will collect as normal on bank holidays too.
The change has been implemented at no cost to the council, helped by the reduction of one collection round whilst not affecting the level of service.
Cllr Roger Gambba-Jones, the district council’s porfolio holder for Waste Management, said: “These collections were an inefficient use of our taxpayer's money and an inconvenience to those households affected.
“None of us like to see our household routine alter unnecessarily, but I'm sure those affected will soon get used to the change and see it as a genuine improvement to the service we provide.”
22 August 2013
Council urging Spalding land and property owners to come forward
South Holland District Council is making a fresh appeal for owners of land and property in Spalding town centre to get in touch. The council is looking at future development of the town centre and wants all parties with a vested interest to be involved.
So far, its plea for stakeholders to come forward has met little response but with the first scheduled forum just six weeks away, the local authority is renewing its invitation.
The first forum - at the South Holland Centre, Spalding on Monday, October 7 at 2pm - will be for land and property owners. Further forums planned for the near future will be aimed at developers, leaseholders, other vested interest groups and the public.
Leader Gary Porter says the future development of Spalding town centre is “enormously important” and there is “no hidden agenda or masterplan” in calling this series of forums.
“This is about getting people around a table to see if there are any synergies from which there might be possible mutual benefits in the future,” he said.
To register as a landowner or freeholder and be kept up to date with the scheme mail email@example.com
12 August 2013
Households and Businesses Could Save on Energy Bills
Householders once again have the chance to sign up for a South Holland District Council Scheme that could save them money on their gas and electricity bills.
Ready to Switch is a collective switching initiative run in partnership with 12 other councils across the country. The scheme uses the combined buying power of residents to negotiate cheaper prices directly with energy companies.
So far, Ready to Switch has seen thousands of households switch, in some cases saving them hundreds of pounds.
Householders now have a further opportunity to register for free and with no obligation to accept their personal offer. All people need is their latest energy bill, contact details and information on how much energy they use. Then sign up online. If people have queries they can call South Holland District Council on 01775 761161.
Following the registration period an auction is held with energy providers to find out which one will bid the best price to supply energy to all the households that have signed up. Previous winners include British Gas and Scottish Power.
Once the auction has taken place, residents are sent a personal offer based on their submitted energy usage. It is then up to householders if they accept or not – there’s no obligation.
Residents have until 15th October 2013 to register for the scheme which is open to all domestic customers.
South Holland District Council is also currently running a scheme to help small and medium sized businesses access cheaper energy tariffs. Businesses can call 0800 038 0548 or visit Ready to Switch for businesses to find out more.
31 July 2013
Forums to Look at Future Development of Spalding
Landowners and property owners are being invited for talks on the future development of Spalding town centre.
South Holland District Council knows of several parties with land and/or property in central Spalding, but there are potentially many other stakeholders from whom it would like to hear.
The aim is to hold a series of forum events, with discussions on how the town might develop in the years to come.
Council leader Gary Porter said: “The future of Spalding town centre is enormously important and I think it would be a very useful exercise for those with a significant stake in it to get together. We’d like to hear from anyone who owns property or land in Spalding town centre. There really is no masterplan or hidden agenda here - this is about getting these people around a table to see if there are synergies from which there can be possible mutual benefits in the future.”
Invitations to a first forum – scheduled for Monday, October 7th – will be sent to all known landowners and freeholders.
Future forums would be aimed at developers, leaseholders, other vested interest groups and the public. Anyone wanting to register as a landowner or freeholder is asked to email firstname.lastname@example.org
25 July 2013
Council Appointed Primary Authority for Food Manufacturer
Bakkavor and South Holland District Council have entered into a statutory partnership over food safety regulatory advice.
A Primary Authority Agreement - which formalises a partnership between a business and a single local authority - has been signed, putting the relationship on a legal footing.
South Holland District Council is now the Primary Authority for food safety regulatory advice to both Bakkavor and other food regulators in the UK which deal with the company.
Craig Fowler, the district council’s Food, Health and Safety Manager, said: "The council will act as the single point of contact under the scheme and this will help the business reduce ‘red tape’."
The partnership covers all aspects of food safety and will include around 28 Bakkavor sites. The company’s technical head office is in West Marsh Road, Spalding and South Holland District Council is directly responsible for the enforcement of eight factories within the district.
Cllr Malcolm Chandler, the council’s portfolio holder for Regulatory Services, said: "I am delighted that we are able to commit to this partnership.
"Bakkavor is the largest chilled foods company in the UK and a major employer in South Holland. The business is showing commitment to ensuring high standards of regulatory compliance for the manufacture of food products.
"Our food officers will be working closely with the business and offering professional advice and support to achieve excellence."
Cllr Chandler added that it was a prime example of partnership working and how the district council is supporting the local economy.
Ann Savage, Technical Director at Bakkavor, said: "We are delighted to sign this agreement with South Holland.
"As a leading manufacturer, we believe that this working relationship between the public and private sector will ensure clear communication and help to provide consistency throughout the industry."
14 June 2013
South Holland’s Council House Come Back
Construction work is set to start on the first council houses to be built by South Holland District Council for six years, with various local companies winning the contracts to build seven new homes.
Spalding-based builders Broadgate Homes will start work on a development of four two-bed semi-detached houses at Coalbeach Lane South, Surfleet, Christine Lawton, Portfolio Holder for Housing at South Holland District Council, said the developments were small-scale but there would be more to come: “Over the first year we’re building between 16 and 20 homes and we have plans to develop more each year after that as part of a rolling programme.
“As a housing stock retaining local authority, and following the introduction of self-financing in April 2012, we are now able to retain much more of the rental income to invest both in improving the existing housing stock, and also in developing more new homes.
“Whilst touseingreleasenotesWhilst he council’s own local housing company, South Holland Homes, has built new properties recently, it is now 6 years since the Council has developed new homes itself.”
The total housing stock owned by the council is approximately 3,890 homes. “The initial impact on waiting lists of these developments may be small but we have to start somewhere,” said Richard Scorthorne, Housing Landlord Manager. “And the more we build, the greater the level of income that we get, so that we can build more.
Ian Canham, Chief Executive of Broadgate Homes, welcomed the council’s astute management in helping to enable local contractors to make competitive bids for the work:
“Each of the schemes is small enough to mean that it attracts only local builders to bid for them, which means that the money being spent is recycled within the district, which is very clever.
“If a national builder or contractor comes in, the profits would be taken out of the district, and they would not necessarily even be using labour from the district. I know it’s only a small programme, but from small acorns big oak trees grow.
“It’s a sensible approach from the council because the housing market has been in a bit of a slump and there is less affordable housing coming through…With the council building affordable housing on its own sites, this is one way of making sure that we don’t get into a situation where no new affordable housing is delivered, which would mean we really would have a serious homelessness problem.”
6 June 2013
Check before you step in a taxi
Taxi passengers need to be aware and take care if they are to get home quickly and safely and avoid the dangers posed by bogus taxi drivers or unlicensed private hire car drivers, especially late at night, says South Holland District Council.
The council has had reports of possible illegal activity by suspect taxis or private hire vehicles operating in Spalding, Long Sutton and across the district, where members of the public may have seen something suspicious but have been unable to give council officers enough information to pursue an investigation.
“We want the public to be vigilant and we want everyone to understand what to look for when they need a taxi or hackney carriage to take them safely home after a great night out,” said Councilor Malcolm Chandler, Portfolio Holder for Licensing.
“It is terrible to think that bogus taxi drivers still operate in towns and cities across the UK especially as this will invalidate the drivers insurance. However members of the public can be assured that if they use vehicles licensed by SHDC, the necessary safety checks have been made.”
Reports received by the council have incl