Police matters; Christchurch Hospital; Microchips in bins;
Dorset Dog Walking Survey; and more

May 2012

Police Matters

There was a very targeted theft of two bicycles from a shed behind a house in Hurn Road recently so if you own bicycles that are worth stealing make sure you keep them secure and out of sight.

Some youths were seen firing air guns up on St Catherine’s Hill and the police informed. Be careful and on the lookout if you are walking up there.

We’ve started to receive minutes of local PACT meetings (Police And Communities Together – that is to say community based police initiatives). They’re a bit old and we have asked the PACT representative to try and get them to us rather sooner in future. However you can find them on our website www.wcresidents.co.uk under Dorset Police and PACT on the left hand side and from them get some idea what your local police are doing.

Christchurch Hospital

In their February-April 2012 News Christchurch Hospital outline their plans for developing the site. The main proposals are: NHS services continue to be offered; the Macmillan Unit remains; The Grove GP Surgery relocates to the site and expands; NHS dentist, pharmacy, opticians and nursing home included on site; new rented accommodation for key workers; a new children’s nursery; and the green space fronting Fairmile Road to be retained and improved.

We would have liked to put a copy of the Hospital Newsletter up on our website but despite all our valiant efforts we have been unable to elicit a sensible response from them. Perhaps they don’t really want residents to be appraised of the full picture? We wonder why?

Waste Collection Feed Back

Last month we gave you the opportunity to have your say on the proposed new waste collection service. Thanks to everybody who responded. Rather than go back to the Councillors we asked Steve Burdis, Director of the new Dorset Waste Partnership, to add his two-pennyworth. Here’s what he had to say about the key topics:

Microchips in Bins
With regards to the microchip in the bin, I am aware that certain newspapers have run horror stories but the reality is that residents have nothing to be concerned about.  The chip is like an electronic barcode that will hold details of the house that the bin is assigned to. It can’t in any way monitor what is put into a bin. 

Garden Waste
With regards to garden waste collections, this service is an opt in additional service and residents can if they so wish continue to take all their garden waste free of charge to any of our Household Recycling Centres.  This new initiative is designed to offer an alternative to residents transporting waste in their cars, which takes time, costs money in petrol and can make a mess of the car.  The price of the optional additional service works out at less than £1.50 per collection and from comments from residents in other areas of the country (where similar schemes have proved very popular) this is considered very good value for money.

The Number of Bins
With regards to the two bins issue, I feel sure than some residents would find this an easier system.  However, there are very good reasons why we are not taking this approach.  Glass is kept separate to ensure it does not contaminate other materials (in particular shards of glass in newspapers can be a problem) and to keep the quality high so that it is recycled as new glass rather than into aggregate (which happens much more when it is collected with other material). 

Food Waste 
Food waste is kept separate so we can offer a weekly collection and can recover value from the material via composting or anaerobic digestion.  There is an EU wide push to collect and treat food waste separately, ahead of a potential compulsion to do so by 2020 (which is being carefully considered by the EU).  It can be argued that the new service will put Dorset ahead of the game.  Also financially we can treat separated food waste for around half the cost of collecting it mixed with other material.  This should help to limit future rises in Council Tax.

With regards to bridleways and long lanes, the service offered to residents will be judged on an individual basis and anyone who is concerned should contact my team for guidance.

Our thanks to Steve for that input – you can contact him at enquiries@dorsetwastepartnership.gov.uk

The New Planning System

We are in contact with CBC as we all try to understand the full implications of the new planning regime. In the interim if there is a development near you that you would like guidance on please don’t hesitate to contact us. We in turn will involve your local councillor and the CBC Planning Department

Dorset Council Dog Walking Survey

This consultation commenced on 26th April and will run until 1st June.
You can have your say at our website www.wcresidents.co.uk (look on left hand side of web page) and we would urge you to contribute if the control of dogs is an important issue for you.

St Catherine’s Hill Management Plan

CBC received 180 form responses and 10 letters, a much lower response rate than we hoped for.
We had over 600 visits to the plan on the website and 200 visits to the response form. We have to conclude that the plan was simply too long, tedious and complex for many people to really get to grips with it and that is a lesson we must learn for the future.
Our thanks to those that did respond, to our volunteers who worked so hard to deliver leaflets to every house in West Christchurch and to Eileen our webmaster who set up the response form on our website.
Of the survey responses, 75% understand and broadly support the plan; 17% do not support it and the remaining 8% didn't address that question. While the figure for support is quite high it does not mean that respondents support all elements and in some cases support is conditional on certain things happening. The priority analysis is quite interesting with the top five topics ranked as follows:
1. Protect wildlife; 2. Hydrology; 3. Access; 4. Views; 5. Property Impact
A detailed analysis of the responses will now be undertaken and we’ll let you know the outcome.

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