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.
BETWEEN 30 and 40 teaching and support jobs are to be axed at Stratford-upon-Avon College following a dramatic 15 per cent cut in government funding.
Yesterday (Monday) the college said it would be considering compulsory redundancies if the required savings weren’t achieved voluntarily.
The shock move was announced by the college following the disclosure that the cash it gets from the Education Funding Agency (EFA) and Skills Funding Agency (SFA) is projected to decrease from £10 million in 2010 to £8.5 million in 2014-15.
The job losses are designed to save around £1.2 million.
Nicola Mannock, the college’s acting principal, told Midweek Herald: “The college has proposed this measure reluctantly; however, action is necessary to ensure that we become a more efficient and dynamic organisation in the future.”
Mrs Mannock added: “Across the country colleges are facing cuts to their funding allocations. Stratford College has to act now in order to future proof the great service we provide to thousands of learners, employers and our local community each year.
“It is vital that we bring our costs into line with the income we generate and the funding we receive. Unfortunately redundancies will be an inevitable part of our strategy to reduce costs.
“We will, of course, continue to look at increasing our income and identifying efficiency cost savings across the college.”
The college pointed out that before this announcement it had introduced measures to keep costs down and avoid job losses, including the imposition of a freeze on recruitment and increasing staff utilisation.
It had also looked to make savings on property and equipment, such as not replacing its minibus.
The college has now en-tered into a 30-day consultation period with staff and trade union representatives. The proposed job losses, which represent nearly ten per cent of the 450 full and part-time posts, are likely to come into effect by April.
“In the first instance the college will look to achieve the savings via a process of voluntary redundancy,” it said. “If the required savings aren’t achieved we will consider compulsory redundancy.”
The redundancies come hot on the heels of a period of turmoil at the college. In the space of a few weeks before Christmas it received an “in need of improvement” Ofsted report, lost its principal of eight years’ standing and acquired a new chairman of governors.
But yesterday Mrs Mannock declared: “We are on a journey to become an outstanding college with students at the heart of everything we do. As it always has done, the college will run a full range of courses, enabling all students to access a wide range of career opportunities next year and into the future.
“We will not be turning away any prospective students and we are offering a ‘student guarantee’ ensuring that there are places available for all students.
“As part of our aim to become an outstanding college we have made a commitment to invest our resources in teaching and learning, ensuring that our current and future students receive the best quality education and college experience.”