News from the hospital; DWP survey; WCRA Membership

November 2016

News from the Hospital

The builders have been working throughout the spring and summer months and the new Christchurch Hospital site is rapidly taking shape whilst the Estates Team at The Royal Bournemouth and Christchurch Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust (RBCH) has won two national awards for its innovative work. This includes work done on the new GP centre and the pharmacy.

Recent visitors to the site will have noticed two large, contemporary buildings near the site entrance. These modern structures house the new Grove GP Surgery, which is now open, as well as a new onsite retail pharmacy.

Edwin Davies, RBCH Associate Director for Estates and Capital Development, said: “The two awards highlight not only our ability to partake in large development projects but also the hard work our Estates Team put in on a daily basis to ensure our hospitals continue to run smoothly while these projects are going on. We are very proud to have won both categories.”

The fully refurbished Day Hospital, which is situated next to the Dermatology Department, has opened. The dedicated team is made up of medical, physiotherapy and occupational therapy professionals that provide a range of services for older people with frailty and long term conditions such as Parkinson’s disease and dementia.
With this in mind, the new Day Hospital boasts dementia friendly, colour coordinated treatment zones, a garden with different surfaces for patients to practice walking on, a therapy kitchen and bedroom to practice everyday tasks in, and a new, fully equipped, rehabilitation gym.
The new X-ray Department has started receiving patients and boasts two brand new X-ray machines donated by the Christchurch Hospital’s League of Friends charity. The new X-ray Department is situated on the right-hand side of Outpatients Department, and can be reached by walking through the Outpatients waiting area.
The Fairmile Café has also opened its doors and offers a range of hot and cold meals and snacks. You can find the café by turning left at the main hospital entrance and following the signs in the corridor.

The new main entrance between the pharmacy and the Macmillan Unit is now under construction and will include an extension of the road for easy access to the new main entrance, and parking facilities.

The Dorset Waste Partnership

The Dorset Waste Partnership (DWP) needs to cut costs and want to hear your views about charging households for lost or broken bins, for providing bins to new properties and for giving residents different containers to the standard issue (such as when additional containers are requested for families of 5 or more people or for those using disposable nappies). You can complete the survey here:

Residents' views will be taken into consideration by the DWP Joint Committee in January 2017 when they consider their options. Closing date for responses is Friday 18 November.

Like most counties, Dorset is subject to persistent fly-tipping and the number of incidences is on the increase, following a national trend. The clearance of this waste costs around £110,000 per year.

To help combat the problem, DWP recently adopted legislation that introduces Fixed Penalty Notices for fly-tipping. The amount is £400 for each incident, the maximum that can be enforced under the current rules.

They have also agreed to pilot a 12-month scheme that will see their enforcement team work closely with an external company that will provide uniformed, trained officers to issue fines for littering, fly-tipping and failure of businesses to prove they’re disposing of their waste responsibly.

It is hoped that these measures will allow DWP to ramp up their enforcement efforts at no extra cost to the tax-payer, while continuing their current approach of using education and advice to prevent further incidents.
It’s That Time of Year again

DCC are preparing their fleet of gritters for their return to duty. 26 gritters have been out on the road completing dry-runs to test equipment before they’re called into action. Last winter gritters were sent out 47 times, with a total of 3,747 tonnes of salt used to make the roads safe. The “gritting season” runs from October to April, with 22 drivers on call 24 hours a day.

Do you know if your property is at risk of flooding? With winter weather on the way the Environment Agency is urging people to be flood aware. 

There are three simple things you can do to reduce the impact of flooding:  
The Latest Scam
Just recently fraudsters have telephoned local residents claiming to be a police officer from the Metropolitan Police. They have told the resident that their personal details have been discovered during a criminal investigation relating to a man who is believed to be involved in fraud.
The phoney policeman tells the victim that they suspect the fraudster has an accomplice within the victim’s bank and explains that the resident’s money is not secure and instructs the victim to transfer funds to a different bank account that the phoney policeman names.

In one case, during the course of the fraud, the victim mentioned a separate ISA. The phoney policeman subsequently encouraged the victim to also transfer these funds which resulted in the victim losing nearly £40,000 of savings.

Please remember:
  • Police officers from any force will NEVER call you and ask for you financial details or encourage you to transfer money between accounts
  • Your bank will NEVER ask for your financial details over the phone
  • NEVER send cash or bank cards anywhere via courier or in a taxi
  • If ANYONE calls and asks for your bank details, PIN or for you to send money or cards via courier or taxi – HANG UP. Wait five minutes, dial 1471 and write down the number. Then call the police on 101.
DC Rhys Griffiths said: “There have only been a small number of attempts made to defraud Dorset residents using this tactic, and Dorset Police is committed to working with the public to ensure it stays that way.

Please follow our advice and share the message with family and friends. Fraudsters will target the most vulnerable in our communities. It is therefore hugely important we work together to make as many people as possible aware of the risk fraudsters pose, and what they can do to help prevent themselves from falling victim”.

Otter Alert
A member who lives in River Way has written to us:

“I was wondering if you would be prepared to use this forum to issue a timely warning to pond owners in the Christchurch area. We live in River Way and several local gardens, including our own, have been raided by otters that have killed many pond fish.

The Wildlife Trust confirms that otters can climb fences and will travel some distance from the river, especially the young ones that have been chased off by the parents to fend on their own. They recommend bite-proof netting as the only solution, as otters are very determined”.

Local Government Reorganisation – Response to Public Consultation

Now that the public consultation period has closed Opinion Research Services (ORS), independent analysts appointed by the Councils of Dorset, have gathered together the various returns and are preparing their report.

ORS will take into account all of the data arising from a number of sources: obviously the Consultation Questionnaire; the returns from the specially selected households across Dorset; input specifically from town and parish councils; the forums that they held across Dorset; other miscellaneous input such as letters received from residents.

Overall Participation

Figures have been published giving a breakdown of responses received from residents to the questionnaire on Reorganising Dorset Councils. Looking first at the specially selected, statistically weighted households - figures are as follows:
Area Population % of pop Replies % of Replies Weighting
Christchurch 48,370 6 459 11 0.6
East Dorset 87,900 12 554 13 0.9
Bournemouth 188,730 25 670 16 1.6
Poole 149,010 20 781 18 1.1
North Dorset 69,880 9 439 10 0.9
Purbeck 45,410 6 453 11 0.6
Wey & Port 65,130 9 391 9 0.9
West Dorset 100,030 13 508 12 1.1
Total 754,460 100 4,255 100  

From this we see that Christchurch has contributed 11% of the replies although its population represents only 6% of Dorset. The WCRA newsletter may have something to do with that. Only Purbeck amongst the other council areas has produced a result so out of kilter in terms of over-representation. This means that results from these two areas will be scaled down before inclusion in the overall analysis using a weighting of 0.6

On the other side of the coin Bournemouth contributed only 16% of the replies despite representing 25% of Dorset’s population.  Their results will be scaled up by a factor of 1.6

NB The specially selected household survey responses will be statistically weighted to take account not just the size of the population in each local authority area as shown above but also to allow for the different response rates from different types of households. This process will ensure that the household survey results are statistically reliable and representative of the whole population both in each area and overall.

Turning now to the unsolicited questionnaires that were returned:
Area Population % of pop Replies % of Replies Weighting
Christchurch 48,370 6 1,409 13 0.5
East Dorset 87,900 12 1,433 13 0.9
Bournemouth 188,730 25 2,048 19 1.3
Poole 149,010 20 2,625 24 0.8
North Dorset 69,880 9 632 6 1.5
Purbeck 45,410 6 656 6 1.5
Wey & Port 65,130 9 694 6 0.9
West Dorset 100,030 13 1,414 13 1.0
Total 754,460 100 10,911 100  

NB For the purpose of this commentary, we have excluded 61 questionnaires received from outside Dorset and 1,564 received from undeclared geographic locations

From this we see that Christchurch has contributed 13% of the replies although its population represents only 6% of Dorset. Again, the WCRA newsletter may well have something to do with that. This means that results from Christchurch will be scaled down before inclusion in the overall analysis using a weighting of 0.5

On the other side of the coin once again Bournemouth is under-represented and contributed only 19% of the replies despite representing 25% of Dorset’s population. It is joined by North Dorset and Purbeck, both of which are under-represented. Their figures will be scaled up. 

In statistical terms these volumes are more than sufficient to produce an analysis of public opinion. We are ever mindful of Mark Twain’s remark that “There are lies, damned lies, and statistics” so with that in mind we let our Chairman off the leash and he has written a paper in non-technical language that outlines what ORS are doing.  Click here to go to our website and click on “latest updates” and use the link dated 2nd November 2016 to learn more.

Next Steps

Opinion Research Services (ORS) will now analyse the data, present the findings and produce a full and detailed report, which will be available online along with the detailed Case for Change that is being prepared by Price Waterhouse Coopers. 

The ORS report will: include overall results for the whole of Dorset; compare findings from the household survey and open consultation questionnaire; feature breakdowns of results from each council area; and present the feedback received from stakeholders via all the different consultation activities. 

The Price Waterhouse Coopers’ Case for Change will assess each option for its ability to meet the government’s ‘statutory tests’ of: 
  1. Improve value for money and efficiency? 
  2. Deliver significant cost savings,
  3. Show that the cost of change can be recovered over a fixed period? 
  4. Improve services for local residents? 
  5. Provide stronger and more accountable leadership? 
  6. Be sustainable in the medium–long term.
A vital consideration in undertaking this type of analysis is that a consultation is neither an election nor a referendum. This is not simply a numbers game. The analyst is expected to discover trend, to highlight issues and anomaly, to summarise various aspects – all aimed at assisting Councillors to reach rational conclusions that have a foundation in public opinion.

WCRA Membership

We are hopeful that our membership subscriptions will reach £1,500 by year end, which will be about £300 less than 2015.

During the year we suffered an unprecedented loss of collectors and that is the largest single cause of this year’s shortfall. However, there have been some losses in the vicinity of Marsh Lane caused by WCRA refusing to oppose the new school.  We had to stop collecting in Flambard Avenue and Walcott Avenue because of the hostile reception in some quarters.

Because of other pressures (particularly the huge workload caused by Local Government reorganisation) the usual follow-ups on regular members who were not in when the collector called have unfortunately not been actioned this year.

If we didn’t manage to speak to you please accept our apologies. The WCRA bank account number at HSBC Christchurch is 815 427 29 and sort code 40-17-22 or please put £1 in an envelope and deliver it to 7 Hurn Road, BH23 2RJ (junction of Hurn Road, Fairmile and The Grove).

If you’re not a member of WCRA but appreciate receiving these newsletters then could you please consider making a small donation. Many thanks.

Copyright © 2016 West Christchurch Residents Association, All rights reserved.
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