Four years ago Ellis Holtom, of Stratford-upon-Avon, was born with half a working heart. Later, the Herald featured his condition as a tribute to the work of Birmingham Children’s Hospital where he was treated. Now, to mark Congenital Heart Defect Week his mum, Vicki, updates his story. . .
ALL 326 local planning authorities in England, councils like Stratford-on-Avon District, need a local plan. The core strategy is a component of that local plan. It contains all the local district wide policies that need to be considered when processing planning applications. New development needs to satisfy local needs, helping to realise the hopes and ambitions of its communities and protect them from situations they fear. New homes and places to work should provide then with a healthy lifestyle, a pleasant place to live, good recreational facilities and above all the infrastructure that enhances their quality of life. The buzzword to describe this is ‘sustainable’.
THE poor are paying more than they should be for their energy, according to damning new evidence from Stratford-upon-Avon’s Citizens Advice Bureau. Prepayment meters (PPMs) are costing users in fuel poverty a “disproportionate amount” for what little gas and electricity they can afford, the bureau has found. There are around 7.2 million people on prepayment meters in the UK and several thousand in the district of Stratford. Despite Stratford’s reputation as an affluent area, the bureau is being forced to come to the aid of more and more people living in fuel poverty on an increasingly regular basis.
AN OFFICIAL paving stone commemorating Stratford-upon-Avon’s forgotten war hero for the 100th anniversary of the First World War will be placed in the town, the government has confirmed. Rex Warneford – the first man to single-handedly shoot down a zeppelin - was ignored in the government’s initial plans to recognise Victoria Cross winners because he was born abroad in India. The Herald launched a campaign, together with King Edward VI school, where Rex lived and studied for five years, to get the fighter pilot recognised.
A STRATFORD district councillor embroiled in a bitter dispute with his neighbours has been granted an event licence by his own local authority despite being legally barred from staging such activities on a part of his premises.
Cllr Robert Vaudry (Cons, Bardon) has been provided with an alcohol and music licence by Stratford District Council even though his plans to turn his home in the village of Dorsington into a wedding venue have been rejected both by the council and by a government planning inspector.
And although there is a ban on Cllr Vaudry’s barn being used for commercially-organised wedding receptions, two such events are already booked—one for next month and the other for August.
Asked by the Herald if the wedding receptions were still going ahead, Cllr Vaudry said: “Undecided. But whatever we do it will be legal, unlike the recent actions of some of our neighbours.”
Meanwhile, villagers in Dorsington argued that the granting of the licence by the district council was a classic case of the left hand not knowing what the right hand was doing.
However, since the matter had been raised with the council by Dorsington residents—and was currently being investigated by a council official—an SDC spokeswoman said she could make no comment.
The relationship between Cllr Vaudry and the village of Dorsington has become poisonous ever since local residents discovered – in December 2012—that he was planning to turn his historic home, The Moat House, into a wedding venue.
And on the eve of the planning inquiry into his appeal against the council’s rejection of his proposals earlier this year Cllr Vaudry claimed that he and his family had been the victims of bullying and harassment —a claim hotly denied by local residents.
Cllr Vaudry repeated his allegations after stating that he intended to put forward a new planning application for his proposals.
He told the Herald: “The planning inspector accepted virtually all the points we made, including the fact that music from the barn itself was inaudible at the nearest residence and that traffic and lighting were not issues.
“But he did raise a handful of other concerns—one purely technical—which we can easily address. Consequently we will be submitting a new planning application within the next few days.
“Amongst other things, in recognition of the concerns of neighbours, this will limit the number of weddings at The Moat House to 12 a year. We should get a decision on this by June.
“Meanwhile a handful of villagers, clearly fuelled by envy and with nothing better to do with their lives, continue to harass and bully my family and I—and now even some of our friends.”
In response, Cllr Gail Williams, vice-chairman of Dorsington Parish Council, told the Herald yesterday (Wednesday): “This is absolute rubbish.”
In one of his comments to the Herald Cllr Vaudry accused villagers of even “accosting” people attending the local church.
This was taken as a reference to local residents speaking to one of the couples planning to hold their wedding reception at The Moat House.
Cllr Williams said she had spoken to the couple, warning them that Cllr Vaudry was legally barred from holding a wedding reception in his barn.
She advised them to seek clarification of the situation from Stratford District Council.
Cllr Williams said: “It would make a mockery of the planning process if people thought they could circumvent that process with a licence. It would invalidate the process and make the planning system completely pointless.”