Shropshire

More carers needed for local children please!

Shropshire Council News Feed - 4 hours 9 min ago

The need for more carers for local children has never been more urgent.

Nick Bardsley, Shropshire Council’s Cabinet member for children’s services and education, said:

“Our priority is to recruit enough local carers to avoid Shropshire children having to go out of the county to be looked after.

“Our carers come from all walks of life – and your age, gender and ethnic background are not barriers to being a great foster carer, and neither do you need to own your own home or have a partner. You simply need to be able to give the support and care a child needs. Many of our carers combine this with other work, while others are able to make it a full-time role. We can fit fostering around you.”

Shropshire, Staffordshire, Stoke and Telford & Wrekin are now collaborating on an appeal to coincide with Foster Care Fortnight, led by the fostering charity The Fostering Network.

Foster Care Fortnight 2018 – the Fostering Network

The fortnight, from 14 to 27 May 2018, highlights the importance of fostering and shows the difference that foster care makes to the lives of fostered children and young people.

This is all part of a regional approach and way of working together which is symbolised by the new logo of foster for your council’.

Foster for your council

As well as offering fees and allowances for foster carers, the council’s support network is also always there for new carers.

Pam from Wem said:-

“When I first applied to foster I was really nervous, but I was put in touch with a great group of people who have been through all the challenges foster caring can throw at you. All the people we meet through fostering have inspired us and we have learnt so much from all the children that have stayed with us. Everybody supports each other and wants you to succeed.”

Another key issue for prospective foster carers is how confident they will be with taking on older or more complex children.

Anne from Whitchurch said:

“We talked it through as a family and decided to apply. At first we had quite definite ideas about the ages of the children we wanted to foster.

“The ages of the children we fostered ranged from under five to teenagers, and you soon realise that their ages don’t matter:  it is a child or young person and they all need that time and support.” 

All sorts of people from all walks of life can and do foster and people are never on their own. There’s always advice on hand and lots of training available. People who want to foster simply need to care about children, have good communication skills, have a spare room and be ready for a challenge. If this sounds like you then please get in touch with us on 0800 783 8798 or visit our website at http://www.shropshirefostering.co.uk/

The overarching message of this year’s Foster Care Fortnight campaign is that foster care transforms lives, not just those of the children and young people who are fostered, but also the lives of foster carers, their families and all those who are involved in fostering.

 

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Categories: Shropshire

Shropshire servicewoman delivers aid through football

Shropshire Council News Feed - Fri, 05/18/2018 - 16:29

News from our partners Royal Air Force

An RAF Officer from north Shropshire has organised a football match in Nigeria whilst serving at an UK Armed Forces Deployment in Nigeria.

Squadron Leader Sharon Loe, from Myddle, is currently deployed in Nigeria with the British Army providing assistance to the Nigerian Government in the fight against the Boko Haram terrorist group.

Sharon Loe with children in Nigeria with new Shrewsbury Town kit

Sharon has assisted the RAF Football Association Taking Football to Africa and Beyond charitable appeal in delivering ‘Aid through Football’ through her links to the RAF Shawbury-based appeal, in organising a friendly football match against the Nigerian Army 7th Division at the Maimalari Cantonment, Maiduguri, Nigeria.

The football match was watched by children from a local football team who, following the match, were gifted a number of football strips, donated through the RAF’s appeal.

Kits donated included strips gifted by Shrewsbury Town FC through the fabulous links between the club and its Chairman, Roland Wycherley, has with the RAF FA and RAF Shawbury.  Additonal items were distibuted that were donated by Jarrow FC through Durham Football Association.

The Appeal was set-up in 2006 and collects unwanted or donated football shirts from UK clubs and sends them to Africa and countries across the world. Since its inception it has distributed close to 200,000 items, including over 58,000 football shirts. This marks the first time that kit has been distributed through the appeal in Nigeria, which becomes the Appeal’s 57th country of distribution.

Shrewsbury Town kits being distrubuted in Nigeria

After a closely-contested match, the Nigerian Army 7th Division Football Team beat the UK team 2-1.

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New adult social care survey asks local people to tell us how they seek advice and support to keep themselves well

Shropshire Council News Feed - Fri, 05/18/2018 - 15:44

Shropshire Council’s adult social care team have launched a survey to ask people across the county about the services and activities they use that helps them stay well and independent for longer.

Adult social care

Also known as ‘preventative’ services, these could include:

  • services that provide or signpost people to information and advice
  • practical support a person receives in their home, such as helping with paperwork or collecting prescriptions, helping with shopping
  • advice and assistance with welfare benefits
  • support and advice a person receives through community programmes such as the ‘good neighbour’ scheme
  • specialist advice and support services, such as those for people with autism, sight loss or people who are at risk of being homeless.

The call out forms part of a review of the preventative services funded by the council’s adult social care team, as well as other voluntary, community and housing organisations.

The survey only takes between 5 to 10 minutes to complete, and asks questions such as how and where a person searches for information and advice, the types of services they use, whether the service helped meet their needs and what kind of barriers they face in trying to find help and support.

Lee Chapman, Shropshire Council’s Cabinet member for health, adult social care and housing, said:

“We have been working closely with our colleagues in the voluntary, community and housing sector who provide preventative services, to plan how these services will look in the future. However, it is also really important that we hear from people who may use these types of services, and of course their carers.

“This will ensure those services we commission in the future meet the needs of individuals and carers to support them to remain healthy, safe and as independent as they can be.  By providing the right kind of preventative service we can enable people to remain in their own home and require less, if any, ‘formal’ support and care services.

“I would therefore want to encourage as many people as possible to complete the survey, we would really value any feedback you have.”

To find out more about the survey and to have your say click here or go online to our Get Involved pages at shropshire.gov.uk and look up ‘Preventative services survey’.

The survey closes on Sunday 1 July 2018.

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Categories: Shropshire

Enable celebrates Mental Health Awareness Week with additional funding

Shropshire Council News Feed - Fri, 05/18/2018 - 13:00

This week is Mental Health Awareness Week (14-20 May 2018) and Shropshire has been awarded extra funds to help people with serious mental health problems across the county into paid work.

Enable

Shropshire Council, through Enable, its supported employment service, will work with partners at South Staffordshire and Shropshire Foundation NHS Trust and in the voluntary sector to increase the number of people with mental ill health into employment. Enable supported almost 300 vulnerable people into paid employment last year and its Mental Health Employment Service consistently exceeds its targets. It will now help to expand the service to support even more people in Shropshire who have serious mental health problems.

Shropshire’s Service Transformation Plan (STP) made the bid to NHS England in conjunction with partners Shropshire Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) and Shropshire Council. Enable have announced that as a result of the bid they have been awarded additional funding for their Mental Health Employment Service. The funding will pay for additional staff with the aim of doubling the number of people with serious mental ill health who are helped into employment.

Jonathan Allan, Enable’s disability services manager, said:

“This is a great opportunity to expand the service and help more people across Shropshire into paid employment. This investment reflects the Government’s view that work can help to improve people’s mental and physical health, and Enable’s great success in supporting people to get jobs and to keep them. ”

Enable’s Mental Health Employment Service is a Centre for Excellence Partner with the Centre for Mental Health in Individual Placement and Support (IPS), which is internationally recognised as the best-evidenced approach to supporting people with mental health problems into work. This involves each local mental health service having an Enable employment officer attached to it that carries out intensive, individual support, rapid job searches and finally a placement in paid employment, as well as time-unlimited in-work support for both the employee and the employer.

Enable prides themselves on getting the right job for the right person and believes that one size does not fit all. In order to gain sustainable employment for someone it needs to be a career path that suits each individual’s needs and aspirations.

Click here to read some of Enable’s success stories: http://www.enableservices.co.uk/category/success-stories/

Further information

Enable is a specialist organisation that supports people with disabilities into work. Their main focus is to assist individuals with disabilities and mental health needs to find a job that suits them. Enable delivers positive, individualised support into recruitment, as well as a comprehensive package of ongoing advice, guidance and support to both the jobseeker and the employer.

Shropshire is nationally one of 17 mental health Centers of Excellence of Individual Placement Support (IPS) in mental health employment. IPS is a proven method of getting people into competitive employment first with training and support on the job. Enable is the regional lead on IPS and is extensively involved in developing and supporting IPS across the West Midlands.

NHS England’s strategy for increasing the employment opportunities of people with serious mental health problems can be found in “The Five Year Forward View of Mental Health” (2017).

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Categories: Shropshire

Blue Butterfly Appeal will raise funds to support patients with dementia

Shropshire Council News Feed - Fri, 05/18/2018 - 11:49

News from our partners Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital NHS Trust (SaTH)

SaTH has announced a new fundraising campaign to support patients living with dementia.

The Trust, which runs the Royal Shrewsbury Hospital (RSH) and Telford’s Princess Royal Hospital (PRH), has used Dementia Action Week (Monday 21 May – Sunday 27 May 2018) to officially launch a range of custom-made, beautifully-handcrafted steel butterflies.

Blue butterflies

The beautiful blue butterflies, each measuring 20cm in diameter and 42cm in length, have been made by the Oswestry-based British Ironwork Centre.

1,000 of the butterflies go will go on display at SaTH’s Charity Fun Day on Saturday 7 July – which this year celebrates the 70th anniversary of the NHS.

All of the profits raised from the sale of the butterflies – which will go on sale at a special rate of £10 at the Fun Day and then £12 going forwards – will go to the SaTH Charity’s Dementia Appeal to assist our hospitals with the creation of dementia-friendly spaces and to buy equipment and resources that will help to reduce confusion, anxiety and distress for patients who have dementia.

Karen Breese, Clinical Nurse Specialist for Dementia at SaTH, said:

“Each individual butterfly has been handmade by the talented team at the British Ironwork Centre and will provide a fitting memento to help us provide improved care and support for patients living with dementia.

“With 800,000 people living with dementia in the UK it is likely everyone knows someone who will benefit from this campaign. Anyone is welcome to purchase a butterfly, and the improvements we make today will go a long way to helping you and your loved ones in the future.”

The blue butterfly is the official symbol of the Butterfly Scheme; an initiative founded by Barbara Hodkinson to help hospitals provide a system of hospital care for people living with dementia or who simply find that their memory isn’t as reliable as it used to be.

Barbara, who is fully supportive of SaTH’s Blue Butterfly Appeal, said:

“The Butterfly Scheme reaches out to people living with dementia and anyone needing memory support. We are delighted to support this fabulous campaign and I look forward to joining Team SaTH at the official launch on 7 July.”

The SaTH Butterflies, priced £12 each, will be available to buy from SaTH’s catering outlets at RSH and PRH as of Monday 9 July. Visitors to SaTH’s Charity Fun Day on Saturday 7 July can purchase them at a discounted price of £10 each.

The British Ironwork Centre has been a huge supporter of SaTH during 2018 – the 70th year of the NHS – and will have a large presence at the Trust’s Fun Day having already agreed to create a sculpture to mark the anniversary using obsolete hospital equipment.

Clive Knowles, owner of the British Ironwork Centre, said:

“It’s a privilege to support our local acute hospital Trust and we will look to increase our efforts throughout the 70th year of the NHS.”

Simon Wright, Chief Executive of SaTH, who recently presented Clive Knowles with a Community Champion Award, added:

“I am thrilled with the company’s continuous support. The British Ironwork Centre is a truly generous corporate partner and a real asset to the community.”

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Categories: Shropshire

Shropshire, Staffordshire, Stoke and Telford & Wrekin join forces in urgent search for local foster carers

Shropshire Council News Feed - Fri, 05/18/2018 - 09:58

Every year tens of thousands of children across the UK need someone to provide foster care in the event that they are unable to live with their parents or wider family for a number of reasons. An urgent search is now on to find new foster carers wanting to foster for their own local council in the Shropshire, Staffordshire, Stoke and Telford & Wrekin areas.

Foster for your council

Over 65,000 children live with almost 55,000 foster families across the UK each day. This is nearly 80% of the 83,000 children in care away from home on any one day in the UK.

There are around 44,625 foster families in England. However, the estimation is that fostering services need to recruit a further 7,000 new carers across the UK to keep up with the demand.

In Shropshire alone, Shropshire Council needs another 25 foster carers a year to join its service. A lack of local foster carers fostering for their local council leads to children having to be placed out of their local area, which is often the very last thing a child needs as continuity is so important for a child – including access to their extended family, friends and school.

Nick Bardsley, Shropshire Council’s Cabinet member for children’s services and education, said:

“Fostering is hugely rewarding – hard work and sometimes very challenging – but immensely worthwhile. Just talk to someone who is fostering already – and find out more about why they do this very special job. You won’t regret it!”

To find out more about becoming a foster carer, please call 0800 783 8798 or visit http://www.shropshirefostering.co.uk/

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Renovation complete as New Century Court re-opens in Oswestry

Shropshire Council News Feed - Thu, 05/17/2018 - 14:16

News from our partners

An important young people’s service in Oswestry has re-opened following an extensive refurbishment project carried out by Shropshire Towns and Rural Housing (STAR).

New Century Court re-opened on Tuesday 15 May 2018.

Celebrations as New Century Court re-opened

The renovation has included new flooring, redecoration, new kitchen and bathrooms as well as fixtures, fittings and furniture for each room.

New Century Court provides accommodation with support for young people aged 16-25. The property is made up of 11 bedrooms, 1 crash pad, 1 training flat, a communal lounge, shared kitchen, a training/meeting room, a computer/study room, staff offices and a communal garden.

Working closely with Shropshire’s Housing Options team and Social Services, STAR Housing will ensure there is the support in place for young people who need housing to thrive and move-on to independence.

New Century Court in Oswestry

The support provided will be tailored to the needs of the individual young person including a dedicated support worker with whom they will meet regularly.

STAR Housing will deliver community activities, workshops, presentations and more for the young people at New Century Court to benefit their development aiming to ensure that the young people go on to be involved in education, training, work or volunteering as part of their move into independence.

Sue Adams, Managing Director at STAR Housing, said:

“We are delighted to have given New Century Court a complete makeover and secure the long-term future of this much needed local service.”

Lee Chapman, Shropshire Council Cabinet member responsible for housing, said:

“The re-opening of New Century Court is fantastic news for vulnerable and homeless young people in Shropshire.

“I’m very pleased with the refurbishment. It has given the site a real lift and has positioned STAR Housing and Shropshire Council to continue to provide a quality and much needed service to young people who need support, at New Century Court.”

Paul Milner, Shropshire Councillor for Oswestry South, said:

“Through close partnership working between Shropshire Council & STAR Housing, I welcome the reopening of Oswestry’s New Century Court.

“This will help to provide much needed support for some of Shropshire’s vulnerable and/or homeless young people between the ages of 16-25. These young people will receive vital support while also taking part in training, education & local community activities which will help enable them to gain valuable life skills and have a better start in life & gain future employment.”

In October 2017, Shropshire Council with the support of STAR Housing purchased New Century Court which secured the future of the much needed service that offers safety, comfort and support for vulnerable and homeless young people from across the county.

STAR Housing manage the tenancies for over 4,000 affordable council homes in the Oswestry and Bridgnorth area on behalf of Shropshire Council.

For more information about STAR Housing, you can visit the website or follow them on Facebook and Twitter.

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Shropshire Council reveals underspend for 2017/18

Shropshire Council News Feed - Thu, 05/17/2018 - 13:29

Shropshire Council is pleased to announce an underspend of just over £650,000 during 2017/18.

This underspend, which follows a predicted overspend of £5 million last autumn, is due to income generated from the council’s investment in the Shrewsbury shopping centres, as well as putting in place a spending freeze on all non-essential spend, amongst other measures.

David Minnery, Shropshire Council’s Cabinet member for finance, said:

“The Cabinet and senior officers have worked hard to deliver this underspend from a mid-year position when we were on course for a potential overspend of around £5 million. This was due to some significant in year pressures, particularly in terms of keeping vulnerable children safe, taking proper care of older people and highways maintenance.

“The council was found to be ‘good’ at our children’s services Ofsted inspection in 2017 – one of only 46 councils across the country to achieve this. Also, only three have achieved the top rating of ‘outstanding’, meaning that our children’s services are now in the top 30% nationally.

“We are proud to have prioritised funds to ensure that vulnerable people in our communities are kept safe and are cared for. To do this we implemented a spending freeze in October 2017 and our managers kept tight control to hold back all but absolutely essential expenditure.”

The council purchased Shrewsbury’s three main shopping centres in January 2018 to support the economic growth and regeneration of the town centre.

Peter Nutting, Shropshire Council’s Leader, said:

“I am often asked why the council invested in the Shrewsbury shopping centres. The main reason is so that we can shape our county town to continue to be a vibrant visitor destination both for Salopians and for all those who want to visit our wonderful county.

“The additional income already raised through this investment between January and March of this year can now be spent on maintaining essential services, without raising taxes. We expect this return to grow to around £3 million in the current financial year.”

A report outlining the underspend will be discussed at the council’s Cabinet on Wednesday 23 May 2018.

Further information

Approximately £465,000 of the underspend shown in the 2017/18 financial outturn relates to income from the Shrewsbury shopping centres accrued into the 2017/18 financial year. This income was planned to fall within the 2018/19 financial year and is within our estimates for income and expenditure for that year. As a result, the majority of the underspend shown in the outturn report is already committed against planned expenditure in 2018/19.

The balance of the underspend, approximately £190,000, represents a real underspend against planned expenditure that will increase the council’s general reserves in the short term.

 

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Decisions made by Central planning committee on 10 May 2018

Shropshire Council News Feed - Thu, 05/17/2018 - 09:10

The following decisions were made by Shropshire Council’s Central planning committee at its meeting at Shirehall, Shrewsbury on Thursday 10 May 2018.

Former railway land off Washford Road, Shrewsbury (18/00268/FUL) The demolition of existing industrial units and construction of 7no. dwellings with associated parking and access (amended description).

Decision:-

That consideration of the application be deferred to a future meeting of this committee for further highways consideration.

117 Wenlock Road, Shrewsbury (17/06053/FUL) Erection of 2No. detached bungalows; formation of vehicular access.

Decision:-

That planning permission be granted as per the officer’s recommendation subject to the conditions as set out in Appendix 1 and the inclusion of the reason for condition 12.

Forge Farm, Upton Magna, Shrewsbury (17/04609/EIA) Extension to Forge Farm Poultry Unit to include two poultry buildings and associated infrastructure.

Decision:-

That delegated powers be granted to the planning services manager to grant planning permission, subject to:

  • The conditions as outlined in Appendix 1 and any modifications to these conditions as considered necessary by the planning services manager;
  • The applicants entering into a s106 legal agreement in relation to the routing plan for HGV movements; and
  • An informative being added to the decision notice in relation to the public Right of Way as detailed in the Scheduled of Additional Letters.

1 Nursery House, Corporation Lane, Shrewsbury (18/00969/FUL) Erection of single storey extension to rear of property including incorporation of some existing workshop area and new living space.

Decision:-

That planning permission be granted as per the officer’s recommendation subject to the conditions as set out in Appendix 1.

 

For further information relating to the decisions go to our online planning register and search for the application by using the reference number or keyword.

 

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Decisions made by South planning committee on 9 May 2018

Shropshire Council News Feed - Thu, 05/17/2018 - 08:51

The following decisions were made by Shropshire Council’s South planning committee at its meeting at Shirehall, Shrewsbury on Wednesday 9 May 2018.

The Larches, Larches Lane, Oreton, Cleobury Mortimer, DY14 0TW (17/02689/FUL) Erection of a building for the housing of alpaca, the storage of hay and associated agricultural equipment for alpaca husbandry; formation of access track.

Decision:

That the application be deferred to a future meeting to enable the applicant to give further consideration to the location of the building in order to address the impact on the surrounding area and neighbouring properties.

Bank House, Corvedale Road, Craven Arms, SY7 9NG (17/06051/FUL and 17/06052/ADV) Installation of ATM and internally illuminated signage (17/06051/FUL); and Erect and display 1 No: internally illuminated top sign and 1 No: internally illuminated ATM logo panel (17/06052/ADV)

Decision:

That, as per the officer’s recommendation, planning permission (17/06051/FUL) and Advertisement Consent (17/06052/ADV) be granted, subject to the conditions as set out in Appendix 1 to the report.

Proposed affordable dwelling at Clunton Coppice, Clunbury (17/06074/FUL) Erection of an affordable dwelling and installation of a package treatment plant.

Decision:

That, contrary to the officer’s recommendation, planning permission be granted.

Subject to:

  • A Section 106 Legal Agreement to ensure the dwelling remains an affordable dwelling in perpetuity; and
  • That planning officers be granted delegated powers to attach appropriate conditions relating to materials, colour, skirtings, drainage, landscaping, ecology and any other conditions and informatives deemed necessary.

19 Burley, Craven Arms, SY7 9LW (18/01366/FUL) Erection of a detached double garage with office above.

Decision:

That, as per the officer’s recommendation, planning permission be granted, subject to the conditions as set out in Appendix 1 to the report.

For further information relating to the decisions go to our online planning register and search for the application by using the reference number or keyword.

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Categories: Shropshire

Walking football team lend support for men’s health screening service

Shropshire Council News Feed - Wed, 05/16/2018 - 16:33

News from our partners Age UK Shropshire Telford & Wrekin

Members of the Shrewsbury Walking Football Club, for players over the age of 55, have been raising awareness of the abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA) screening programme offered by Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital NHS Trust (SaTH).

The team leading the AAA screening programme, based at the Royal Shrewsbury Hospital, is offering free screening for men aged over 65 who are at most risk of AAAs – a swelling in the aorta which can be fatal if not detected early.

SaTH and Shrewsbury Walking Football Club

The club, which operates in partnership with Age UK Shropshire Telford & Wrekin, attracts an average of 34 players every week, meeting at Monkmoor Recreation Ground in Shrewsbury. Members of the walking football team were urged to go along to a screening session by one player who took part in the programme, resulting in 15 men putting their names forward.

Shrewsbury Walking Football Club

Kevin Moore, Director of Operations at Age UK Shropshire Telford & Wrekin, said:

“The walking footballers are a great support network for each other. It is often difficult to engage with men about health-related issues so we were delighted to hear that so many of the players had gone along to the AAA screening offered free of charge by SaTH.”

Jess Smith, AAA Programme Coordinator at SaTH, said:

“Over 200 older men in Shropshire have been diagnosed with AAA over the past 4 years so it is really important to make men aware of the screening programme. Working in partnership with the Shrewsbury Walking Football Club and local charities such as Age UK Shropshire Telford & Wrekin enables us to reach those people who are most at risk.”

The AAA screening takes place within local GP practices at both the Royal Shrewsbury and Princess Royal Hospitals, as well as other locations. It is made possible thanks to the League of Friends of the Royal Shrewsbury Hospital who kindly donated the equipment.

For further details about the AAA screening programme please contact The AAA Screening Team on 01743 261048 or email: stwaaascreening@sath.nhs.uk 

Anyone interested in joining the football club can get further information from Age UK Shropshire Telford & Wrekin on 01743 233123.

Further information

About Age UK Shropshire Telford & Wrekin

Age UK Shropshire Telford & Wrekin is a local charity which has been working tirelessly for over 67 years to make life better for older people across the whole of Shropshire.

Age UK Shropshire Telford & Wrekin offers a range of services for older people in the county. These include: Information and Advice, Day Centres, dementia support, the Help at Home Service, volunteer befriending visitors, Home from Hospital services, Lunch Clubs, Living Well activities, Benefits Advice, and Advocacy on behalf of older people.

Last year over 100,000 volunteer hours were given to support older people, ranging from helping people to fill in benefits forms, supporting people in our 40 Day Centres, visiting isolated older people at home, to acting as receptionists in our Shrewsbury office.

As part of our ‘No one should have No one’ campaign, we are raising money and recruiting volunteers to increase services such as befriending and social activities that reduce isolation and loneliness among  older people in Shropshire.

Age UK Shropshire Telford & Wrekin is based in Shrewsbury and in Telford.  The Shrewsbury office is open from 10.00am – 4.00pm Monday to Friday, 01743 233123.  Our office at Meeting Point House in Telford is open every morning, 01952 216018.  Further information about our local services is available on our website www.ageukshropshireandtelford.org.uk

About Shropshire and Telford Hospital NHS Trust (SATH) AAA Screening Programme 

The team travel to 69 GP Practices in and around Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin to scan participants.

AAA Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin invite around 3500 men every year for a scan.

Gentlemen who are 65 and over and have not yet been screened can call the team on 01743 261 048 to self refer and get an appointment. 

  • AAA= Abdominal Aortic Aneurysms
  • The aorta is the main blood vessel in the body.
  • An aneurysm is the weakening and widening of the blood vessel walls.
  • There are no associated symptoms.
  • Men aged 65+ are most at risk.
  • A simple scan could save your life.
  • NHS screening invitations will be sent to men aged 65 this year.
  • Those over 65 can request a scan
  • 1 in 70 men who are screened have an abdominal aortic aneurysm.

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Categories: Shropshire

Mental Health Awareness Week: Coronation Street story serves as a reminder that it’s OK to talk about suicide and mental health

Shropshire Council News Feed - Wed, 05/16/2018 - 14:40

Coronation Street’s poignant story that centred around suicide, and the early days of suicide bereavement, serves as a reminder to Shropshire’s and Telford’s communities that it’s OK to talk about suicide and mental health.

As part of Mental Health Awareness Week (14-20 May 2018), Shropshire and Telford and Wrekin’s Suicide Prevention Network want to remind and encourage anyone who is experiencing similar issues, or who has been bereaved as a result of suicide, that help and support is available.

Mental Health Awareness Week 2018

The network, whose vision is to aspire to prevent all deaths from suicide in Shropshire and Telford & Wrekin, had recently issued its Joint Suicide Prevention Strategy. The strategy sets out actions to ensure those at risk or affected by suicide are signposted to, and can access, the support and agencies that they require at the right time.

Between 2013 and 2015 there were 131 deaths formally recorded as suicide across Shropshire and Telford. These numbers are likely to be underestimated due to the legal necessities for categorising a suicide death.

Help at Hand

Last week’s storyline involved Aidan Connor, played by actor Shayne Ward, taking his own life. Suicide is the leading cause of death in men younger than 50. Men are at a significantly higher risk, with three out of four suicides being completed by men (although in recent years the rate of suicide deaths have been increasing for women).

There is also growing evidence of the association between self-harm and increased risk of death by suicide, even though many people who self-harm do not intend to take their own life.

Lee Chapman, Shropshire Council’s Cabinet member for health, adult social care and housing, said:

“Suicide is a very sensitive and complex issue. There is no simple explanation for why someone chooses to take their own life and it is rarely due to one particular factor. As members of communities, it is everyone’s responsibility to look out for those who may be struggling to cope with day to day life.

“If people can relate to or feel affected by Aidan’s story, it may help (or they should) talk about this. Talk to a friend, family member, GP, counsellor or one of the many helplines available.”

Anyone needing support should call the Samaritans 24-hour support service on 116 123 or make an urgent appointment to see their GP.

To access mental health services, in Shropshire call 0300 124 0365 or for Telford call 0300 303 1601 or visit http://mentalhealth.sssft.nhs.uk/.

For those affected by suicide can also seek help and support at http://supportaftersuicide.org.uk/support-guides/help-is-at-hand/

Further information

Shropshire and Telford & Wrekin’s Suicide Prevention Network is made up of the following organisations:

      • Shropshire Council
      • Telford and Wrekin Council
      • Shrewsbury and Telford NHS Hospital Trust
      • South Staffordshire and Shropshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust
      • Shropshire Community Health Trust
      • West Mercia Police
      • Shropshire Fire and Rescue Service
      • West Midlands Ambulance Service
      • Telford & Wrekin Clinical Commissioning Group
      • Shropshire Clinical Commissioning Group
      • Third and voluntary sector organisations

To date the partnership have produced a ‘quick reference’ service information leaflet, which summarises what to do and who to contact if you or someone you know is experiencing a mental health crisis (currently in draft for comment).  The partnership recognise that suicide is preventable, and its risk factors can be screened for, so have been developing stronger partnership links across a wide range of services to raise awareness of suicide risk and promote more of us to talk openly about suicide and self-harm.

Shropshire’s Joint Suicide Prevention Strategy

The strategy aims to:

  • Shropshire’s Joint Suicide Prevention Strategy aspires to prevent all deaths from suicide in the region and ensure access to the most appropriate help and support for those considering suicide and for those affected by suicide.
  • The partnership are currently progressing the action plan detailing how the Suicide Prevention Strategy will be implemented. This includes the priority work streams of improving access to a range of tailored support for people who may have suicidal thoughts, have self-harmed or are experiencing a mental health crisis and supporting those who have been bereaved by a suicide death.
  • Raise awareness of suicide risk, promote access to support services (including those bereaved by suicide) from a wide range of sources (not just health services)
  • Encourage more people to talk about self-harm, suicide and the risk factors associated with suicide in order to destigmatise and encourage people to seek help when they feel it is needed
  • Provide those who have a public-facing role to have confidence in signposting people affected by suicidal thoughts to the services that could best help them.
  • There is growing evidence of the association between self-harm and increased risk of death by suicide, even though many people who self-harm do not intend to take their own life.
  • Certain occupations are at greater risk from individual’s likelihood of attempting suicide which include doctors, vets and farmers.  There is therefore opportunity to reach people through support in the workplace.
  • Recent evidence from Public Health England suggests higher risk of suicide is higher in males with lower skilled occupations compared to the national average.  Males in labourer/construction roles have three times average risk, whereas those in skilled trades (such as plasters or painters) have double average risk.
  • Highest occupation risk of suicide for females is associated to the nursing profession and primary/nursery school teachers.
  • Both males and females working in culture, media, performance/entertainer or sports occupations have a higher than average risk of suicide.

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Categories: Shropshire

Sports guests kick off national See and Hear event

Shropshire Council News Feed - Mon, 05/14/2018 - 16:06

Special guests representing the field of sports and outdoor activities will be part of the celebrations at Shropshire’s See and Hear event this week, (Wednesday 16 May) at Shrewsbury Sports Village.

John Churcher

John Churcher

British Paraclimber John Churcher will be officially opening the event at its launch at 10am along with his guide dog daisy. John was the first deafblind person to climb the Eiger and is active in promoting awareness and access for visually impaired climbers.

Julian Jackson – Big Blind Walk challenge

Just before the Exhibition opens, Julian Jackson, who lost his sight in 2010 to a retinal inherited disease, will set off from the Sports Village as part of stage 18 of his 55 stage Big Blind Walk challenge. The Big Blind Walk challenge is a 1000 mile walk from Land’s End to John O’Groats. Julian will set off from the sports village, en route to Whitchurch 20 miles away, at 9am.

Julian’s epic walk began from Land’s End, Cornwall, on 29th April, and will finish at John O’Groats, in the far north of Scotland, on or about 22nd June. The purpose of his walk is to raise funds for research on sight loss, and raise awareness about sight loss. The National Eye Research Centre is supporting his walk.

Julian Jackson

Jessica Hiles

Jessica Hiles

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

National Gold Medallist, Specialist Olympian Jessica Hiles will be judging the See and Hear’s Boccia Tournament, hosted by Shropshire’s Disability Network.  Jess who has learning and physical disabilities scooped a gold and silver medal at the 2014 Special Olympics.

The See Hear Exhibition is now well established as one of the largest of its kind in the UK. Over 800 visitors are expected to attend from far and wide. Over 70 organisations that provide the latest aids and services for those with sight and hearing impairment will be exhibiting.

John Churcher will be welcomed to the Exhibition by Councillor Lee Chapman, Shropshire Council Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care, Health and Housing.

Councillor Lee Chapman said;

“We are extremely honoured to welcome our special guest to this year’s See and Hear Exhibition.  This year’s theme is ‘inspiration’, and I feel our guests truly represent the spirit of this having accomplished these fantastic achievements regardless of their disability.”

“Our See and Hear Exhibition is a fantastic event and open to everyone to try out equipment and learn more about the support on offer to help improve the quality of life for those with sensory impairment, such as hearing or sight loss.

“If you, or someone you know or care for, has a sensory impairment, I would strongly recommend taking the opportunity to come along, as it really is a great opportunity to see the support and information that’s available. We look forward to seeing you.”

You can find out more about John Churcher and Jessica Hiles at https://johnchurcher.wordpress.com/ and https://shropshire.gov.uk/media/9279/jess-hiles-profile-for-webpage.pdf.

Julian’s Big Blind Walk featured on the 29th April edition of BBC TV’s Countryfile programme. Those who wish to support him by giving donations can do so via Julian’s Big Blind Walk website at http://bigblindwalk.com

The See Hear Exhibition opens 10.30 am on Wednesday 16th May and remains open until 4pm.  A free shuttle bus will run from Shrewsbury train station to the exhibition, every 30 minutes starting at 9.30am

For more information about the event visit shropshire.gov.uk/seehear2018. You can also follow us on Twitter @VTTShrop or on Facebook at www.facebook.com/VTTShropshire

 

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Categories: Shropshire

Take part in this survey and help tackle food poverty in Shropshire

Shropshire Council News Feed - Mon, 05/14/2018 - 10:29
News from our partners – Shropshire Food Poverty Alliance

Shropshire Food Poverty Alliance logo

 

 

 

 

Are you concerned about food poverty in Shropshire?

Shropshire Food Poverty Alliance  are looking to find solutions to food poverty in Shropshire.  If you have experienced food poverty or if you are from an organisation or community group who support people in food poverty, the group is looking for feedback from local people across Shropshire,  to build a clear picture of the current situation and to build better solutions.

The alliance wants to bring people together to better connect the support services they already have, to identify gaps and to create an Action Plan to fill them.   Please get involved to tackle this growing problem in Shropshire.

Take our survey  

Residents and organisations are being asked to share their experience and tell us what needs to change – please pick the most relevant survey for you:

Come to a workshop

In June the alliance will be  running 4 half-day workshops to explore solutions. Do you have a view on what needs to change? Can you share your experience and ideas?

Workshops will be held on:

Please follow the links to book your place

Emily Fay from the Shrewsbury Food Hub said;

“The more people involved in developing solutions to food poverty, the stronger and more effective they will be.  If you know anyone who works with people at risk of food poverty, or people who have experienced food poverty themselves, please get involved in our survey and workshops.”

You can find out more by visiting the Shropshire Food Poverty Alliance website

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Categories: Shropshire

Mental Health Awareness Week – Advice and support on hand at Let’s talk mental health event

Shropshire Council News Feed - Mon, 05/14/2018 - 09:10

Let’s talk mental health logo

 

 

 

 

 

 

Local residents and those are interested, or who work in, mental health, are invited to come along to Shropshire’s Let’s Talk Mental Health event at The Lantern, Meadow Farm Drive, Sundorne, Shrewsbury on Tuesday 15 May 2018.

About the event

The event from 10am to 4pm, is being hosted by Shropshire Council’s Mental Health team in celebration of Mental Health Awareness Week, which take place from 14 to 20 May.

This year’s theme for Mental Health Awareness Week is ‘Stress’.  Research shows that 16 million people experience a mental health problem each year, and stress is a key factor in this. By identifying and dealing with stress we can go a long way to tackling mental health problems such as anxiety and depression, and, in some instances, self-harm and suicide.

Shropshire Let’s Talk Mental Health Event is being attended by over 20 organisations who will be offering advice and support as well as showcasing the work they do.

Organisations attending

Organisations at the event will include:

  • 360 Shrewsbury/Barnabas
  • A4U
  • Al Anon
  • Big Red’s House
  • Bromford
  • Carers Trust 4 All
  • Green Oak Foundation
  • Christians Against Poverty
  • Citizens Advice Bureau
  • Crowsmill CIC
  • Customer Services, Shropshire Council
  • Eden Futures
  • Enable
  • Joint Training – Shropshire Council
  • Positive Steps / Shared Lives
  • Public Protection – Shropshire Council
  • SASH Housing
  • Shrewsbury Food Hub
  • Shropshire Fire and Rescue Service
  • Shropshire Housing
  • Shropshire Libraries
  • Shropshire Recovery Partnership
  • Walking With The Wounded
  • West Mercia Police
  • Wild Team – Shropshire Council
Activities taking place

Activities at the event include, laughter and yoga workshops, head messages as well as practical advice and tips on how to help relieve stress.

Representatives from Crowsmill Craft Centre will be demonstrating how they can help individuals to learn new skills, including woodwork, blacksmithing, welding and archery.  Attendees will be able to find out more about the newly launched Shropshire Human Library and will also be able to borrow books from the new service.

Councillor Lee Chapman, Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care, Health and Housing said;

“By tackling stress, we can go a long way to tackle mental health problems such as anxiety and depression, and, in some instances, self-harm and suicide.

“Our Let’s Talk Mental Health event is a great opportunity for people who need advice and support to help cope with the day to day stresses that life brings. It’s also a great way for our partners to showcase the fantastic work they do to support the mental health and well-being of our local communities.”

With this year’s theme of ‘Stress’, Mental Health Awareness Week, the event also focuses on those whose who work in Mental Health.

Andy Begley, Director of Adult Services at Shropshire Council added:

“Mental health staff work hard to support those with mental health issues. Yet, as staff workloads increase along with the complexities of their work, they are less likely to monitor their own stress levels or to put into practice what they preach.

“Our Let’s Talk Mental Health event will therefore provide a valuable opportunity for staff, as well for those who use mental health services, to come together, in an informal setting, where information can be shared and achievements celebrated.”

For more information about the event click here or visit http://shropshire.gov.uk/lets-talk-mental-health-event/

For information on Mental Health Awareness Week visit https://www.mentalhealth.org.uk/campaigns/mental-health-awareness-week

Further information

Mental Health Awareness Week 2018 will take place from 14-20 May on the theme of stress.

Mental Health Awareness Week is the UK’s national week to raise awareness of mental health and mental health problems and inspire action to promote the message of good mental health for all.

Mental Health Awareness Week has been run by the Mental Health Foundation since 2001.

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Categories: Shropshire

Feathers Hotel – Statement from Shropshire Council and Public Health England (PHE) West Midlands

Shropshire Council News Feed - Sat, 05/12/2018 - 10:39

In the interest of public safety, Shropshire Council and Public Health England (PHE) West Midlands have issued the following statement:

Following routine sampling of the water system at the Feathers Hotel by Shropshire Council’s Regulatory Services team, elevated levels of Legionella have been detected in the water system at the hotel.

Decision

Working with Public Health England, a joint decision has been made to implement urgent measures to reduce Legionella levels in the water system and prevent any risk to staff and guests who use the hotel. This includes a temporary voluntary closure of parts* of the hotel until further precautionary works can be carried out.

In 2017 there were two separate cases of Legionella at the hotel where one person sadly died from the disease. The hotel closed in September 2017 for extensive remedial works to be carried out and regular monitoring has been undertaken since.

The elevated levels have only been detected in the recent set of samples and no new cases of Legionnaires’ disease have been associated with these premises. Any measures being taken now, are precautionary.

About Legionella

Legionella organisms are commonly found within water in the natural environment. When levels of the bacteria are elevated in water supply systems there may be a risk of contracting Legionnaires’ disease within 14 days of exposure.  Symptoms include:

  • high temperature, feverishness and chills;
  • cough;
  • muscle pains;
  • headache; and leading on to
  • pneumonia, very occasionally
  • diarrhoea and signs of mental confusion.

There has been no further cases since September 2017. However as a precautionary measure, guests who have stayed at the hotel within the last 14 days will be contacted by the hotel. Those guests who are concerned and exhibiting any of the above symptoms should contact their GP in the first instance.

Health and Safety in the workplace

The health and safety of residents and visitors in Shropshire is a key priority and Shropshire Council will always strongly encourage employers in the county, to make health and safety improvements that protect their customers and staff.

An investigation is currently underway by Shropshire Council, under the Health and Safety at Work Act, in relation to previous Legionnaires’ cases.

For more information about health and safety in the workplace click here.

Information about Legionella can be found on the Public Health England website.

Further information

* Only part of the hotel has voluntarily closed as a precautionary measure and this is the part of the hotel that is on the 2nd boiler system (where the negative results were found). The remainder of the hotel including the bar remains open and other rooms on a room by room basis.

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Categories: Shropshire

Libraries in Shropshire are highlighting Dementia Action Week 21-27 May

Shropshire Council News Feed - Fri, 05/11/2018 - 11:38

Libraries in Shropshire are highlighting Dementia Action Week 21-27 May 2018 with a series of events for local people living with memory loss.

Mental health, including dementia – infographic

Seven libraries are hosting ‘Tea and Memories’ sessions, featuring reminiscence activities, tea and cake, and opportunities to discover the library service’s Books on Prescription for Dementia collections as well as free, loanable Shared Memory Bags. Sessions are taking place at the following locations:

  • Monday 21 May 2pm-3.30pm             Pontesbury Library
  • Tuesday 22 May 2pm-3.30pm              Gobowen Library
  • Wednesday 23 May 2pm-3.30pm       Bridgnorth Library
  • Wednesday 23 May 10.30am-12pm   Oswestry Library
  • Thursday 24 May 10.30am-12pm       Shrewsbury Library
  • Thursday 24 May 1.30pm-2.30pm     Church Stretton Library
  • Friday 25 May 10.30am-12pm            Whitchurch Library

Lezley Picton, Shropshire Council’s Cabinet member for culture and leisure, said:-

“We know that there are currently around 3,000 Shropshire residents with a diagnosis of dementia and that figure is likely to grow as our population ages. Our libraries play a vital role in providing information and services to help people with their well-being: the Dementia Action Week events are just one strand of the larger health programme. Library staff are trained to offer a dementia-friendly welcome and I would encourage local people living with memory loss and their carers to call in at their nearest branch to find out more about what is on offer.”

Other scheduled events include free Dementia Friends information sessions at Ellesmere Library on Monday 21 May from 10am to 11am, and 11am to 12pm, led by Jeremy Stretton. Oswestry Library will host George Rook on Tuesday 22 May from 12.20pm to 1.30pm, when he will be talking about ‘Living With Dementia’ at a Learning at Lunchtime event (£3 per person to include tea and biscuits). There will also be an opportunity to find out more about the newly-formed Oswestry Dementia Action Alliance at an information stand there throughout the week.

For more information, contact team librarian Heather Rodenhurst on 01743 255031 or email heather.rodenhurst@shropshire.gov.uk

Related links https://shropshire.gov.uk/libraries/

                        https://www.dementiaaction.org.uk/members_and_action_plans/3176-                shropshire_libraries

 

 

 

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Categories: Shropshire

Meole Brace roundabout improvement work wins second award in a month

Shropshire Council News Feed - Thu, 05/10/2018 - 11:30

Work to improve Meole Brace roundabout in Shrewsbury has been named the winner of the ‘Best Small Project’ award in the Chartered Institute of Highways and Transport (CIHT) West Midlands Awards 2018.

It comes just three weeks after the work was awarded the judges’ ‘merit’ award in the Institute of Highways Engineers (IHE) Mercia Branch Awards 2018.

The CIHT award judges were looking for projects of less than £5 million in value which demonstrated outstanding examples of transportation, or highway projects that were delivered on time and to budget and which made a major contribution to the West Midlands.

Meole Brace roundabout after improvement work was completed

Meole Brace roundabout was one of the first elements of the £12m Shrewsbury Integrated Transport Package (SITP) to be completed.

The island was re-modelled to increase capacity on the approach legs and reduce congestion. Traffic signals, street lighting and signs were upgraded and ‘soft-engineered’ sustainable drainage systems incorporated together with natural woodland habitats to promote wildlife and ecology.

A new link through road and shared pathway was created through the island to benefit all modes of transport and to enhance the surrounding environment – and cycling and pedestrian facilities were enhanced to promote Shropshire Council’s visions for improving health and well-being in the community.

Steve Davenport, Shropshire Council’s Cabinet member for highways and transport, said:

“We’re delighted that this important scheme has been recognised by industry experts for the second time in less than a month. As a result of the improvements to the roundabout traffic movements for vehicles, pedestrians and cyclists have been greatly enhanced. Along with improvements to the traffic lights phasing at the junction, this work has delivered a junction that will have the capacity required for the planned growth of the town.”

Pete Wilde, regional director for WSP – Shropshire Council’s design consultant – said:

“All key partners have worked extremely hard to deliver this hugely sensitive scheme and we are very proud and delighted to have received this latest award for the Meole Brace project. The recognition by the CIHT West Midlands together with the recent Judges Merit Award at the IHE Mercia Branch awards is positive publicity for the civil engineering profession and the contribution engineers make to delivering sustainable and long-term economic benefits to rural counties such as Shropshire.”

As part of the reinstatement works to habitat and planting, the island is also becoming established as a more attractive, ecologically diverse and effectively managed gateway entrance to the town. Shropshire Council will continue to work with Shrewsbury Town Council to ensure that this continues.

McPhillips (Wellington) Limited was the local Shropshire contractor that delivered the works on the ground.

The CIHT award winners were announced at a ceremony in Birmingham on Thursday 3 May 2018.

Further information about the Shrewsbury Integrated Transport Package

The SITP is funded through £6m of Growth Deal funded secured through the Marches LEP, and £6m of developer contributions.

The SITP is a package of transport measures designed to improve the transport system in Shrewsbury, and stimulate a new period of sustainable economic growth within the town and the surrounding area.

It comprises two main elements:

  1. Key junction improvements at Reabrook Roundabout, Meole Brace Roundabout, English Bridge Gyratory and Coleham Head. These involved upgrading current highway infrastructure, including traffic signals to improve vehicle capacity and pedestrian and cycle facilities, with the aim of reducing congestion
  2. Enhancements in Shrewsbury town centre, including Pride Hill, The Square and Mardol to improve the public realm and highlight pedestrian facilities. This closely links to the traffic management measures.

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Categories: Shropshire

Council to pay staff more to attract and retain staff

Shropshire Council News Feed - Wed, 05/09/2018 - 14:56

Shropshire Council is proposing to increase staff pay to help retain those with essential skills and expertise, and attract others.

This proposal, which will be considered by Full Council on Thursday 17 May 2018, follows a recently agreed national pay award, offering council staff a two-year pay increase totalling four per cent, with two per cent backdated to April 2018 and the remaining two per cent from April 2019.

Pay in the public sector and in local government in particular has been restricted since 2010, with no annual pay award for staff from 2010 to 2014, and increases capped at one per cent since 2016.

This, coupled with changes to the council’s staff terms and conditions, which included a two stage pay cut in 2011 and 2012, has meant that salaries have fallen some way behind rates of pay for local government nationally. Salaries are up to six per cent adrift from the national rates of pay, which makes it difficult to attract, recruit and retain staff.

For many years, the National Joint Council (NJC) have negotiated pay on behalf of all those they represent. Previously, the NJC have negotiated a percentage increase to be applied to existing pay structures. However, from April 2019, the minimum pay point has been given a specific value of £9 per hour. This change has an understandable knock on effect for the rest of the workforce, which has created an opportunity to look at pay across the board.

Steve Charmley, Shropshire Council’s Deputy Leader, said:

“Shropshire Council is a large and complex organisation which, every day, delivers over 150 services that make a huge difference to people’s lives. It is important that the right people with the right skills and experience are retained to deliver this important work.

“This change will see staff that have been working incredibly hard in difficult conditions rewarded, which is something we’ve wanted to do for a long time.

“If approved, this means we can restore NJC rates of pay sooner.

“Although this has been instigated by a national change negotiated by the NJC, if agreed, these proposals will mean that we can start to pay our staff the nationally-negotiated rates sooner (1 October 2018). Then from April 2019 a minimum of £9 per hour.”

The report also proposes an increase to the senior pay bands following a review by the Local Government Association in March 2018. This review found that the council is paying its senior staff less than other comparative councils, and that it needed to address this if it wanted to recruit top talent to its most senior roles.

Analysis of the pay data contained in the review suggested that the salary for the chief executive post should be pitched somewhere within the range of £160,000 to £175,000.

Approval of the proposal to Full Council would see the chief executive position increase to £150,000 per annum, bringing it more in line with other councils.

It would also see the salary for the recently vacant position of director of place and enterprise, which is responsible for economic growth and the council’s commercial ambitions, alongside the three other directors, increase to £120,000 – £130,000 per annum.

Peter Nutting, Shropshire Council’s Leader, said:

“Shropshire attracts top talent because we offer a fantastic place to live, alongside a progressive and challenging work environment. Salary is not the only reason that appropriately qualified people come to Shropshire, but pay should not be a barrier to ensuring the best people continue to want to work here.

Changes in legislation mean that we have to pay, at the lower grades, the same as other councils. This pushes all salaries upwards. Our staff are our most valuable resource, and fair pay is something that we need to restore, following pay cuts in 2011 and 2012, in order avoid losing staff to other organisations.

“We want to adjust pay, as it is the fair, ‘right thing to do’. We plan to phase in the changes over the next two years, slightly ahead of the Government’s pay settlement, so that our pay levels catch up by 2019/20.

“Although our finances are still challenging, this is something we have to do. For the budget, there is never a good time to increase pay, but all employers know that you have to pay the going rate.”

“Our staff are loyal and committed to Shropshire, and there are about 40% less staff now than in 2012, so we recognise everyone is working extremely hard.

“With my Cabinet colleagues we have already travelled a long way towards creating financial stability, and we are driving ambitious plans to make our communities and economy thrive.”

A major issue for Shropshire Council is around key workers. Social workers for adult social care and children’s social care are hard to attract at the best of times, but this is made more difficult when proposed salaries are not comparable with the national average, or even surrounding counties.

Karen Bradshaw, Shropshire Council’s director of children’s services, said:

“We spend far too much money on agency staff as we simply cannot attract and retain enough social workers. It is testament to the skill and ability of children’s services staff that we were recognised with a ‘good’ rating from Ofsted, but if we hope to retain that award we need to invest and pay a fair salary.”

The pay change comes at a good time for staff as Shropshire Council are undergoing a huge transformation, with new ways of working, a more commercial approach, significant investment in economic growth and the Digital Transformation Programme: all contributing to an overall change. This will mean all jobs will adapt and change, and ultimately the council will employ fewer staff, but more highly-skilled staff.

Peter Nutting added:

“The pay decrease was always going to be temporary, and this increase would be a fitting reward for staff who continue to work incredibly hard during these difficult times. As a council, we are undergoing one of the largest transformation programmes in the country, with the scale of our ambition being noted by the recent Corporate Peer Challenge.”

For the Council agenda, please click here – ‘Amendment to Pay and Reward Policy’ is agenda item 11.

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Categories: Shropshire

Police station relocations to increase collaboration and savings

Shropshire Council News Feed - Wed, 05/09/2018 - 09:45

News from our partners Police and Crime Commissioner

As part of the Police and Crime Commissioner’s commitment to ensuring as much money is spent on frontline policing as possible, four police stations in Shropshire will be relocating.

Commissioner John Campion is responsible for all West Mercia police buildings and has a duty to ensure they are effective and efficient and deliver value for money on behalf of local communities.

Following a review of all police buildings, it has been found that a number of them aren’t currently being fully utilised. By working with partners, as part of the One Public Estate Programme (OPE), the Commissioner has been able to identify where savings can be made by co-locating buildings without reducing the level of service the public receives.

The first four sites identified for co-locating will be sharing space with the following organisations:

  • Bridgnorth Police Station will co-locate with Shropshire Fire and Rescue Service at Bridgnorth Fire Station on Innage Lane. This relocation is taking place because the existing building is too large.
  • Wem Police Station will co-locate with the NHS at the Community Clinic on Aston Street. This relocation is taking place because the existing building is too large.
  • Whitchurch Police Station will co-locate with the NHS at Whitchurch Community Hospital on Claypit Street. This relocation is due to the building no longer being fit for purpose, with a modernisation costing too much to make it suitable.
  • Shrewsbury Town Centre Police Post will co-locate with Shrewsbury Town Council in the Darwin Library on Castle Street. This relocation is due to the existing police building being poorly located. This will now mean that the team is more centrally located for communities to access the police services and enable closer working with partners.

The Commissioner said:

“Our police force needs to be in fit-for-purpose buildings that support the new technology we are introducing. It is also important that, whilst doing this, we are identifying savings and ways of working better and more closely with partners.

“Placing the Safer Neighbourhood Teams in shared spaces that are regularly accessed by the public will allow the police, and their services, to be made even more accessible than they were before.”

The Commissioner will continue to review all buildings with a view to exploring opportunities with any compatible partners or organisation to co-locate and share efficiencies.

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Categories: Shropshire

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