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.
PARENTS of pupils at Stratford-upon-Avon School are “disgusted” they were not told a teacher was arrested on school premises over child porn charges.
Edward Clay, a 27-year-old maths teacher, was arrested at the school in Alcester Road in September.
He had 2,300 indecent images of children on his computer, as well as 629 indecent movies, and was given a suspended jail sentence at a recent court hearing.
However, parents only found out about the incident this week after the Herald published a report of the case.
Karen Savage-Davies has a daughter in Year 9. “I think it’s disgusting that as parents we were not told something as serious as this,” she told the Herald.
The school wrote to her only after the report was published, and she thinks they tried to “brush it under the carpet”.
“Are we not entitled to know this information?” she asked.
“They say no-one was actually harmed. My question is, if we were told as parents when it happened we could have talked to all of our children. What if he had done something but a child has not come forward because parents weren’t informed?”
There was outrage on the Herald’s Facebook page when the story emerged. Parents were demanding to know why they had been kept in the dark and some complained directly to the school.
Stratford School was asked today (Friday) to clarify why parents were not told about the arrest but they declined to comment.
Clay had been teaching at the school for only 13 days before he was arrested and it was stressed in court there was no suggestion he had ever behaved improperly towards a child.
Earlier this week, headteacher Neil Wallace said in a statement: “He was suspended as soon as we were informed of the investigation and has subsequently been dismissed. The offences concerned did not involve Stratford School in anyway.”
But mum Karen said: “He was working at the school, he was arrested at the school, but still nothing to do with us parents?”
Another mother, who did not wish to be named, has one child in Year 7 and another due to start next year. She went further, calling for disciplinary action against school staff.
“This shouldn’t have been kept quiet and gone to press before we were told,” she said, adding that she was now “very reluctant” to send her second child to the school.
But others on Facebook have defended the head. Louise Chapman said: “It is just a shame that some people are being so negative toward the school and the new head, when all of this was no fault of theirs.
“Perhaps we should be offering support at this time and not allowing the school's reputation to be muddied.”
Clay, who was living in Alcester Road at the time of his arrest, pleaded guilty to 21 charges of possessing indecent images of children. He had been downloading images of children, mainly boys, since he was 18 years old.
He was sentenced at Warwick Crown Court to eight months in prison suspended for two years. He was also ordered to take part in an internet sex offender treatment programme, to carry out 200 hours of unpaid work and to pay £340 costs.
Related article: Maths teacher had over 2,300 indecent images of children