THE Stratford Mop of 1914 appeared little changed from previous years. Wartime austerity had not yet set in and few people foresaw that the conflict would be lengthy. One of the great traditions of the fair was its roasts. No less than five oxen and seven pigs were rotating on the spits outside the pubs on the big day. The excursion trains brought their usual hundreds of revellers from Birmingham and other centres of population. None of Stratford’s conscripts had yet embarked overseas, although just five days before, a regular with the South Wales Borderers, Sgt RH Savage, had been the first Stratfordian to fall victim to the war. He had been struck by shrapnel at the Battle of the Aisne and died of his wounds in Bournbrook Military Hospital.
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.
A STRATFORD-upon-Avon grandmother who complained to police about a beggar was told that she could help the fight against crime in Stratford if she became a police community support officer (PCSO).
Wendy Geapin, aged 68, was left speechless when an officer from Stratford Police Station rang her home and told the pensioner that because the force was strapped for cash and only attended burglaries or violent crimes, she might want to consider training as a PCSO.
“I couldn’t believe my ears!” Wendy told the Herald. “I was amazed when the officer rang me and said this.
I told him I was elderly, but he replied, “you’re never too old to join the police force, we’d train you to deal with situations.”
I thought it was a joke and when I told my daughter she thought it was hilarious, but seriously, what if I was in a wheelchair? Would I have been told the same thing?”
The grandmother-of-four was contacted by police after she approached Stratford District Council to complain about a street beggar who she claims was “intimidating and aggressive” towards her and other pedestrians on the Tramway Bridge last week.
“The man was in his late 20s and he was shouting at people to give him money. I didn’t like it at all so I quickly walked past him and phoned the council because I didn’t think people were allowed to beg on the streets of Stratford. The council referred the matter to the police and this week I got a phone call from an officer who said I’d have to prove the man on the bridge was actually begging. It all got a bit confusing,” Wendy said.
The volunteer charity shop worker said she still has faith in the police but has no intention of taking them up on their offer of becoming a community officer.
According to Warwickshire Police’s website the criteria for PCSOs is as follows: “PCSOs are the eyes and ears of Warwickshire Police. They provide a reassuring presence to communities and they support police officers in dealing with various incidents, helping to reduce crime and the fear of crime.
The ideal candidate will have great interpersonal skills, the desire to protect people in Warwickshire from harm, and the ability to build vital links within communities.
The role is predominantly carried out on foot so a PCSO needs to have a high degree of stamina and physical fitness and be happy to work independently on their own for the majority of the time.”