27 Feb Norman’s Notes
Mims Davies, MP
Since her election as Member of Parliament for Mid Sussex, Mims Davies has visited East Grinstead a number of times. Her visits have included:
Visiting the Queen Victoria Hospital, a very large employer in the town and meeting with the Chair and Chief Executive. She has, in addition, visited The Hope Job Club at the Jubilee Community Centre, also popping in to see the Food Bank there with a planned return visit.
Mims has held her first East Grinstead based surgery at East Court and has since returned to meet with Julie Holden, the Town Clerk, to discuss a number of matters pertinent to the town.
Mims has also visited East Grinstead Sports Club for a tour and meeting, to discuss the early stages of their plans for the future. Mims knows EG Sports Club well as a venue for the Three Towns Marathon; one of her ideas when she served as a Mid Sussex District Councillor.
Don’t Forget Open4Business – 26 March 2020, 3-7pm
Open4Business takes place at the South of England Showground.
This event brings the whole business community together, from sole traders to SMEs, consultants to corporates and business associations to Government Departments.
Book exhibition space or free tickets at: www.open4business2020.eventbrite.co.uk
MSDC to introduce weekly food waste collections as part of a new waste trial
MSDC will become the first District in West Sussex to trial weekly food waste collections as part of an enhanced rubbish and recycling service. On 10 February, the Council’s Cabinet agreed to proceed, in partnership with West Sussex, with a trial collection service that includes weekly food waste and absorbent hygiene product collections. The trial service will comprise a ‘1-2-3’ collection system as follows:
Introducing weekly food waste collections and an opt-in subscription service of absorbent hygiene product collections e.g. nappies and incontinence waste;
Retaining existing fortnightly recycling collections and the garden waste subscription service;
Three weekly general rubbish collections.
Three areas will be selected to take part in the trial and direct communication with the residents involved will take place well ahead of the trial’s proposed start date in late April.
Councillor Jonathan Ash-Edwards, Leader of Mid Sussex District Council said:
“In Mid Sussex, the average household refuse bin is made up of more than 41% food waste, by weight, and the evidence from other areas of the country is clear that food waste collections can dramatically increase recycling and reduce general waste.
“We know that Mid Sussex residents work extremely hard to recycle their waste and are keen to recycle more. 55% of respondents to a resident consultation in 2018 asked to be able to recycle food waste and this trial is a direct response to that feedback. If the trial is successful, we hope to be able to roll the service out to the whole District in 2021”.
Councillor John Belsey, MSDC Cabinet Member for Environment and Service Delivery said:
“Food waste has a significant negative impact on our environment and it is estimated that recycling all food waste nationally would have the same environmental benefit as taking 1 in 4 cars off the UK’s roads.
“When food waste is collected separately, an anaerobic digester can use the gas that is produced when the food breaks down to generate energy and turn the left-over material into a soil fertiliser.
“With weekly food waste and absorbent hygiene product collections, general rubbish bins will be much less full.”
The trial will be run in partnership with West Sussex County Council.
West Sussex County Council’s Cabinet Member for Environment, Councillor Deborah Urquhart said:
“This is the first trial of its type to be considered in West Sussex. Our aim would be to gain valuable feedback from residents, enabling a full review before potentially re-shaping and enhancing rubbish and recycling collections for the future.”
Black-Tie Dinner & Jazz – 22 April, 7-11.30pm
MSDC Chairman, Cllr Colin Trumble, is supporting Woodlands Meed SEND School and College, based in Burgess Hill as one of his charities this year. Cllr Trumble is hosting a Black-Tie Dinner and Jazz event at Mid Sussex Golf Club on Wednesday 23 April. The evening will include music by the Sara Oschlag Trio and guest speaker Robyn Steward, an internationally acclaimed autism advocate, author and musician. To learn more about promotional opportunities and ticket purchase please visit: www.midsussex.gov.uk/leisure-sport/jazz
It has been a busy start to the year, with budgeting for 2020/21 taking place. This involves the overall direction and service levels as promoted in the draft Corporate Plan, which will go to Full Council on 4 March for approval after having passed through the scrutiny process and Cabinet approval.
At Cabinet Grants Panel, earlier this week, we agreed a number of grants to a range of organisations across the District. Those in East Grinstead include: Chequer Mead Theatre (£49,950 for new toilets); Glen Vue Centre (£11,244.40 to improve gas and electrical supplies for Age UK) and East Grinstead Town Football Club (£28,000 to improve pitch drainage and install a pitch irrigation system).
A project, to provide a new outdoor recreation space at Stone Quarry Estate, received a grant of £80,000. This work is also being supported by Clarion Housing Association. We have worked very hard to bring this project to fruition, along with the Stone Quarry Crew.
East Grinstead Museum received an amount of £3,200 to enable the Museum to tell the little-known story of the Sisterhood of St Margaret, who moved to their convent off Moat Road in 1870.
Apart from a number of other grants across Mid Sussex we also agreed grants of £250 to 27 community organisations to mark VEDay75 in May. These grants are intended for activities to mark the day when guns fell silent across Europe, bringing an end to World War II.
Will your company be doing something to mark this important day in our history? More info here: https://www.veday75.org/
Annual Air Quality Report to DEFRA
Mid Sussex District Council is required to submit an annual report to the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (“DEFRA”).
In Mid Sussex we have 33 monitoring sites which show a sustained gradual decrease in pollution from nitrogen dioxide, and we have 1 Air Quality Management Area (AQMA) around part of Stonepound Crossroads in Hassocks. The AQMA shows a downward trend in NO2 in the area, which is largely due to improved technology in motor vehicles and more responsive traffic management systems. The Council is part of the Sussex Air Quality Partnership which, last year, secured funding to work with schools on an anti-idling project. Alongside this, there is work underway on school travel plans to encourage a shift from car use to walking.
Air Quality: During February, I attended a full day training event, arranged by the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health, where I heard about interventions to improve air quality, clean air legislation and how a neighbouring council improved their air quality by re-designing greener city spaces.
I also chaired an evening training session for MSDC Cllrs to focus on the Air Quality Management Report and how we monitor air quality across the entire district. I will shortly be attending an Inter Authority Air Quality Group meeting, hosted by West Sussex County Council, where we will hear from various transport experts.
Hate Crime Training: I recently attended an interactive course, delivered by West Sussex County Council, where the Prevent programme was highlighted. We discussed grooming, how to spot signs of it in our work and how to report it. Other issues discussed included both right- and left-wing activities across West Sussex and ways to halt this unacceptable form of hatred and extremism within communities.
Sussex Police Command and Control Centre
I visited the Command and Control Centre, located in Lewes, along with colleagues from the Police and Crime Panel, in order to view progress being made to improve telephone waiting times.
In times of emergency there is space available to set up a Gold Command Centre to manage significant emergency situations.
We had the opportunity to listen to some recorded, real 999 calls in which officers are expected to make split second decisions about life and death situations. Some of these calls can be extremely traumatic, but officers often go on to answer many other similar calls in the space of just one 12-hour shift.
For information on alternative ways to report non urgent matters and intelligence to Sussex Police please visit: https://www.sussex.police.uk/ro/report/