Monthly Archives: August 2018

Fake goods seized at car boot sale

DSC_0008

A large quantity of counterfeit goods were discovered at a car boot sale in Peterborough at the weekend.

Trading Standards officers carried out inspections at the ‘Bizzy Boot’ sale held in Wellington Street car park every Sunday.

Counterfeit goods were seized from a number of stalls on the site with investigations continuing. The seized items included:

  • Christian Dior Perfumes
  • Chanel Perfumes
  • Hugo Boss Perfumes
  • Nike Trainers
  • Armani Clothing
  • Adidas Clothing

The perfume/aftershave is of particular concern – it is a new style counterfeit product, sold in a 30 – 40 ml atomiser and is often described as ‘Demonstrator’ or ‘Tester’ with the wording ‘Not for retail sale’ written on it.

This is a clear attempt to give the item a degree of authenticity when sold cheaply at boot sales or markets.

These items are predominantly manufactured in Eastern Europe and past examples have been found to be unsafe causing severe skin irritation to the user.

Peter Gell, Head of Regulatory Services at Peterborough City Council, said: “People should be aware that by purchasing counterfeit goods you are having a detrimental effect on the livelihoods of legitimate local businesses and their employees.

“You may also be putting yourself at risk as counterfeit products are not subjected to the same health and safety checks as legal items. The sale of counterfeit goods will simply not be tolerated in Peterborough and I would urge anyone with information on this seizure to contact us.”

The counterfeit clothing seized will be passed to the Police National Aid Convoy for redistribution to disaster areas over the world and the counterfeit perfume will be destroyed.

Residents who have information on counterfeiting activity can call Citizen Advice on 03454 04 05 06 or can pass on details by emailing trading.standards@peterborough.gov.uk

Peterborough schools again above average for A-level passes

A-levels

For the fourth year running Peterborough is above the national average for the number of pupils achieving A-level passes.

With results received from all the city’s 11 secondary schools, the overall pass rate has remained above the national average at 98.2 per cent. The national average is 97.6 per cent.

Both local and national figures are a slight decline on last year’s results, reflecting changes to A-level courses and the move to exam-only tests in many subjects.

The proportion of students achieving higher grades has remained high, with 44.7 per cent of students in Peterborough schools achieving A*-B grades.

Almost 1,000 young people sat A-levels or equivalent this summer at secondary schools across Peterborough.

Of 942 students sitting A Levels, 734 of them (77.9%) achieved passes in at least three subjects.
Changes to the qualifications system means that many A-levels have been decided by final exams, with no link to coursework or AS-levels.

Jonathan Lewis, Peterborough City Council’s Director of Education, said: “I would like to say a big well done to all the young people who collected their exam results today. The city’s schools are once again above the national average for the number of pupils achieving A-level passes which is fantastic.”

More than 5,000 new homes to west of city

Over 5,000 new homes will be built in Peterborough after planning permission for the Great Haddon development was issued.

The council has approved outline planning permission for 5,350 homes, new schools and community facilities on the site next to the A1 to the west of the city.

Developers will now draw up detailed plans for the site, which has been earmarked for housing for several years.

Councillor Peter Hiller said: “Peterborough is the fourth fastest growing city in the country and we are actively working to meet high housing demand, consistently completing around 1,000 homes a year. Our emerging Local Plan sets a target of delivering 21,315 homes by 2036, so it is crucial that we continue to build at a substantial rate.

“This site has taken time to progress, but due to the tenacity of our planning team professionals we can now look forward to seeing the completion of a major development which will benefit our residents for years to come.”

Electric car numbers double

Chargers

More Peterborough car drivers are going electric than anywhere else in the UK.

There was a 52 per cent increase in electric cars between September 2016 and September 2017 (rising from 5,425 to 8,249).

Back in 2012, there were just 12 electric cars registered in the city.

There are plans to extend the number of charging points in the city from eight to 16 over the next year.

£58K grant to build indoor riding facility

Laura Horrell with Sprite LR

A Thorney riding school and livery yard has received a £58,000 grant to build a new, indoor training area.

Middle East Farm Riding School, which trades as Bar Pasture Stables, has received the cash from the Rural Development Programme for England and Opportunity Peterborough.

It’s a pot of funding aimed at helping rural business and the rural economy.

Bar Pasture Stables has been running from Thorney for seven years and is home to 17 horses, offering riding lessons and livery.

Manager, Laura Horrell (pictured), said, “Having an indoor arena will mean we can hold our classes year-round no matter the weather. Ice, rain and heavy winds can be problematic and potentially dangerous for beginner riders, so with only outdoor space available at the moment, we have to reschedule quite a few lessons.”

Groundworks are scheduled to begin this month to have the building completed by November.

The grants are aimed at boosting the rural economy, from supporting tourism and small business growth to the development of agriculture, farm diversification and forestry. In rural Peterborough and Rutland, there’s a £1.3 million funding programme which is allocated by Opportunity Peterborough (operated by the City Council) and Rutland County Council.

Steve Bowyer, chief executive of Opportunity Peterborough said, “The grant will support real business growth and have additional benefits for building local skills at the riding school. Supporting the rural economy is vital – particularly given the huge role it plays across Rutland and Peterborough.”

Deadline for applications for the next round of grants is the end of August, with the final round due in March next year.

Thorney Parish Council – August meeting

The Parish Council has been quoted almost £1,000 by Peterborough City Council for installing a bench in Thorney Park. The sum was considered too high, although it was felt some benches were needed for old people. It was decided to ask local craftsmen to quote for building a suitable bench.

.

The abandoned tipper truck on Wisbech Road will be removed. City Councillor Steve Allen said because of the poor state of the vehicle, the council had agreed to put a seven-day notice on it. If it’s not removed during that time, it will be towed away.

.

The Parish Council has asked for the 30mph speed limit along Whittlesey Road to be extended as far as the cemetery. They are waiting for a response from the City Council.

.

Woburn Drive and Sandpit Road may be included in speed surveys undertaken by the village’s SpeedWatch team in future.

Organiser Samantha Godley told the Parish Council that Cambs Police hadn’t surveyed those roads yet, but as soon as they had, checks would be carried out.

Three sessions had been undertaken on Whittlesey Road and Wisbech Road so far and there had been a marked slowing of traffic during the survey period. Four drivers had been found to be speeding. There are another six volunteers and a training session for these will take place on September 8.

.

Repairs to Woburn Drive will be made by Larkfleet Homes, developers of the Thorney Meadows estate, but not until work is finished on the site.

There will also be a traffic survey to determine whether traffic calming obstacles should be installed.

.

The Parish Council is to consider how community fund cash from the Park Farm housing estate might be spent in the village.

For new developments over a handful of homes, the developers has to pay a levy to the City Council to help pay for new infrastructure, such as schools, play areas, etc.

Fifteen per cent of the money goes to the community, but it can only be spent on an agreed scheme. Russ Bevington said the council should be considering how the money might be spent in the village and asked other members for suggestions.

The levy is about £4,000 per ‘roof’ and could amount to over £50,000 for the 90 homes.

Mr Bevington was also concerned about the cost of maintaining the access road and green spaces. This cost would fall on residents, but he’d read reports about people living on new developments being charged large sums.

“What happens when the road is full of pot-holes and people start fly-tipping on the green spaces? They will be liable for repairs and cleaning up,” he said.

.

The area around Thorney Abbey and The Green is to get “heritage” street lights paid for by the Parish Council. Now there’s a proposal to install “heritage” street names as well.

Samantha Godley had surveyed over 40 homes and 27 had been in favour of the idea. The street names would be white on either dark blue or dark green and there was also an option to provide cast-iron name plates.

The Parish Council would have to pay for them and pay for the city council to install them.

Ms Godley will complete the residents’ survey, also provide costings for the next meeting.

.

Residents in new houses in Goodman’s Close (off Station Road) are having to bring their bins to the main road because refuse trucks can’t access the site.

The developer has not yet made the connection between the estate road and Station Road and is in dispute with the City Council, which wants a wider junction than originally required.

Russ Bevington said the pavement looked a mess and was a potential trip hazard.

.

There are only four vacant plots on the village allotment site off Gas Lane. Clerk Tony Hovell said the allotments were looking better than at any time in the recent past.

.

The bungalow at 3 Laurel Close has been sold, subject to contract, it was reported. It had been the subject of concern due to the overgrown state of the garden.

.

There have been complaints about there being just one swing in the children’s play area.

Nathan Potts said he’d asked about this and been told the frame was now judged too narrow for two swings, it was not set deep enough into the ground and the soft matting had to be larger.

The Parish Council has asked the city council to sort it out.

Former MP will not fight to regain seat

Stuart-Jackson

Former Peterborough MP Stewart Jackson, who lost his seat to Labour in the 2017 general election, has announced he will not be standing again.

“It feels like the end of an era but I won’t be seeking the Conservative nomination in Peterborough for either by election or General Election,” he tweeted.

The Conservative party will choose its next Parliamentary candidate next month.

Village news and services on your smartphone

App for Thorney

A new mobile App will be launched for the village later this summer.

The app is intended to work alongside the Thorney Post and the Facebook Community Forum to serve as a quick and easy guide to local businesses, parish councillors, city councillors and local clubs and organisations.

Sections can be added to present further information as required – whether for events, topical issues, community initiatives, etc. A meeting for the local groups and organisations will be arranged following launch to discuss how they can use the App to communicate with their individual groups.

The business directory will initially be created from those advertising in the Thorney Post – at no additional cost to them – and will include contact information, company profile and links to their website and social media pages.

The App for the village will be included in the launch of a new mobile App platform created by local resident Michael Shuster.

“We’ve been using our system to deliver mobile apps for local businesses and organisations for the last few years – including grassroots football leagues, County Football Associations and business networking groups.

We’re now adapting our system to create an ‘app community’ where people can have a huge amount of information available to them for ease of access whenever and wherever it may be required, in a way that is affordable to small businesses and organisations and helpful in improving their communications and engagement.

Our App community will be called Robin Road (searchable in App Store and Google Play hopefully from September) and is sufficiently flexible to apply to most types of businesses – please visit www.one-app.uk or contact Michael on 07957 576765 for more information.

Please note that the App for Thorney is being delivered at no cost to the village and will be administered by Michael Shuster.

Eric Rayner, editor of the Thorney Post, said: “This might be the future for village news. We’re very happy to work with a local business, giving them access to articles and data, to help get this off the ground.”

 

New group set up to decide what happens to village assets

Bedford Hall Low Res

What’s happening with our village amenities? In our last edition, we reported on three major issues facing the village:

  • Peterborough City Council wants to sell buildings it owns in Church Street. These are the old infants and girls’ schools built by the Duke of Bedford. One part housed the old village community centre and the other is still used as the library, which will have to be relocated.
  • The city council wants to hand the Bedford Hall to a village management committee so it doesn’t have the burden of repairing and maintaining the building.
  • The sports pavilion in Thorney Park, owned by the city council, can’t be used because it’s falling to bits. There’s a growing campaign for the council to replace it.

So what has happened since April? A steering group called Thorney Futures has been formed comprising city councillors, council officials, members of Thorney Parish Council, representatives from the Bedford Hall management committee, the Thorney Society and Thorney Football Club.

The Thorney Post has also been invited to attend meetings.

Nothing is agreed so far, but the first two meetings of the group considered the following plans:

  • Bedford Hall to be owned by a new management company and grants sought to develop the building into a commercially viable operation, possibly with office space and a flat or accommodation.
  • Church Street buildings to be sold (estimate £220-£250K) and money to be used to build a new sports pavilion and meeting room in the park.
  • Library to be moved to the Duke of Bedford School and incorporated into new building work required to cope with increased numbers of pupils.

Since then, a group of people interested in serving on the new management committee for the Bedford Hall have met with a representative from the Architectural Heritage Fund (AHF) to get specialist advice and find out what support would be available. Some start-up funding is available to support community-led groups. A number of reports have been provided on the condition of the building and several, more in-depth reports are awaited.

Michael Bowen, chairman of Thorney Football Club, has met with council officials in the park. The council has promised to provide the club with support and funding to manage a new pavilion. The council is preparing drawings and plans showing design and location of a new pavilion. Thorney Parish Council may take on ownership of the building and sub-lease to the football club or the club may own it themselves.

Plans to move the library to the school were considered by school governors, who have said they have concerns over parking and security and do not want the library there.

Statement from Thorney Futures:

This statement has been issued to residents of the village by the Thorney Futures group:

Many of the organisations representing the village have recently started to meet formally with senior officers from the city council, to draw together plans to secure the future of some of the important assets the village benefits from.

Discussions are progressing positively in relation to:

  • Bedford Hall and the Museum – unique, architecturally significant buildings that provide invaluable community space and facilities
  • Public Library – an important service for residents of all ages
  • Sports pavilion – a vital changing facility to enable sports activity to take place locally

Alongside city council officers, the working group that has been created includes representation from your city councillors, the parish council, the Bedford Hall Management Committee, the Thorney Society, the school, and Thorney Football Club.

At this early stage, discussions are focusing on ensuring these vital facilities are protected for the village’s benefit for the future. There are no plans whatsoever to close either Bedford Hall or the Library, but it is nevertheless important we ensure they and other facilities are able to be self-sustaining and fit for purpose for generations more to enjoy.

A range of options will be agreed through the working group, the members of which are keen to make sure we hear from villagers as soon as we have more details to share.

We will provide regular updates through this and other media so that you are kept informed, and meanwhile if you have any ideas you’d like to feed in please do contact any of the organisations described above.

 

1 2