Midcheshire Independent Issue 159

NOVEMBER 2023 2 No part of this publicationmay be used or reproduced without the express permission of the publisher. Every effort is made to ensure that the articles and advertisements that are carried are authentic, however the publisher accepts no responsibility for claims made. © Investors in Publishing Ltd 2023. This newspaper is publishedmonthly by Investors in Publishing, Publishing House, 3 Bridgebank Industrial Estate,Taylor Street, Horwich, Bolton BL6 7PD. 01204 478812 EDITOR Ged Henderson ged@hendersonnewsandmedia.com CONTACT JayneMeadowcroft 01204 478812 07703 045189 jayne@independentnewspapers.co.uk ADVERTISING Robin Atkins 07767 840274 robin@cheshireindependent.co.uk CONTACT US A SHOPPING and visitor attraction near Northwich has benefitted from funding designed to help businesses become more sustainable. The funding through Cheshire West and Chester Council’s Climate Emer- gency Fund (CEF) has helped Blakemere Village install a solar PV (photovoltaic) system that will benefit the business and its tenants for years to come. The family business, which has shops, craft workshops, a play barn and sev- eral attractions, has invested £165,000 in energy saving measures across their site, with £50,000 contributed through the CEF. Following a green audit of the busi- ness by Groundwork Cheshire, a local charity supporting businesses to become more sustainable, a plan to install 113 solar panels across three buildings was developed. Ginny White, partner at Blakemere Village, said: “We were delighted to work with Cheshire West and Chester Council on this project. “Their assistance and the support they provided was invaluable and allowed us to choose the right system for our busi- ness with confidence. “The green audit has ensured we have planned well into the future to keep our energy costs down as well as improving our energy efficiency. “We aim to continue to make progress within our business to achieve the carbon neutral deadlines set for 2045. Since the council launched the CEF, 44 projects have been supported across the borough. THREE houses in Hartford have been closed for three months following repeated reports of anti-social behav- iour and drugs offences. Closure orders for the three premises on Beaufort Close were successfully granted at Chester Magistrates’ Court in October. Cheshire police officers applied for the orders following repeated reports of anti-social behaviour and drug use. The orders prohibit access to the properties and the force says they are necessary when prevent- ing recurring nuisance behaviour and disorder. Inspector Jason Murray, of Northwich Local Policing Unit, said: “My team have responded to the significant concerns raised by residents on Hartford Grange regarding repeated and persis- tent anti-social behaviour and drug use by a small number of residents over the last year. “We have presented strong evidence to the courts, clearly demonstrating the devastating effect that this behaviour can have on a community. “Applying for three simulta- neous closure orders is unprece- dented and requires a collective team approach with partners. These orders now bring the total of closure orders obtained by my team this year to 12. “I welcome the court’s decision to apply these orders, and the sup- port and reassurance they will provide to the community. “I also hope that this sends a clear message to all residents of our communities that we will not tolerate anti-social and disre- spectful behaviour at all, and we will continue to make our com- munities hostile places for anyone wanting to commit crime using all tools at our disposal.” CHESHIRE East Council has appointed experienced local government officer David Parr as its new interim chief executive. He was Macclesfield Borough Council chief executive before it became part of Cheshire East in 2009 and spent 18 years in that top role at Halton. His extensive local government experience includes being in the hot-seat in two other councils. He takes over the role while the search for a permanent chief exec- utive continues. In a statement announcing the appointment, Cheshire East said: “David’s partnership approach has delivered many significant achievements and opportuni- ties for the communities he has served, most notably the delivery of the £1.5billion Mersey Gateway Bridge project, and he brings with him valuable experience of all areas of local government. Sam Corcoran, leader of Cheshire East Council, said: “I’m delighted that someone with David’s experience has been appointed as Cheshire East Coun- cil’s interim chief executive. “The chief executive role plays a critical part in us navigating our way through the challenges that local government is facing and enables us to deliver against the priorities that we have for the borough. “I would like to thank Dr Lor- raine O’Donnell, as our departing chief executive, for her work and wish her well in her new role. “Lorraine’s contribution to developing the organisation we are today has been significant and invaluable. This has been a time of change for Cheshire East Council and Lorraine has been a driving force, supporting and delivering our vision for the borough. “The work continues to find a new permanent chief executive and David’s leadership, in the interim, will help us in the next stage of our journey, seizing new opportunities and meeting the challenges that we have ahead of us.” Craig Browne, deputy leader of the council, added: “David is an experienced leader with a track record of making a difference across Cheshire and Halton. His local knowledge will be a great asset while he supports us as the interim chief executive. “He is joining us at a challeng- ing time especially in respect of the financial position of local government and more specifically in Cheshire East, where we are seeking to understand the impact of the government’s decision to cancel HS2.” TWO grant schemes targeted at stimulating growth of the business community have been unveiled in Chesh- ire East. The Flexible Workspace Grant and the Sustainable and Inclu- sive Growth Programme Grant are available to applicants through the council’s business growth and investment team, with applications being wel- comed now. The Flexible Workspace Grant is offering grants from £25,000 up to £100,000 to landlords or leaseholders to refurbish empty or underused property into flex- ible co-working spaces. The Sustainable and Inclu- sive Growth Programme offers grants from £1,000 to £10,000 to businesses looking to invest in new equipment, technology and business practices, which will decarbonise their operations. To enable businesses to get the right help to access these grants, Cheshire East has set up a spe- cialised business support hub. Mark Goldsmith, who chairs its economy and growth Council appoints interim chief exec New role: David Parr Help at hand for growing business Boost: Staff and tenants in front of one of the buildings that has benefited from the solar panels A SHINING EXAMPLE OF SUSTAINABILITY committee, said: “These are two very different grants which I hope will appeal to a wide remit of businesses in our borough. “Increasingly, showing ver- satility and flexibility are typical attributes that many forward-thinking organisations are having to show, so on that front the Flexible Workspace Grant is something I think will resonate well. “The Sustainable and Inclu- sive Growth Grant is very much focused towards companies with a strong environmental con- science, which connects directly with the council’s own ambitious target of being carbon neutral by 2025. “I’d urge businesses of any size to look at this grant and to get in touch with our business support hub colleagues directly, who will be very happy to help.” These grants are distributed by the UK Shared Prosperity Fund and are part of the gov- ernment’s ‘levelling up’ agenda, which is providing £2.6billion of funding through local invest- ment by March 2025. Cheshire East Council has been allocated £12.4m. Three closure orders granted Babet wreaks havoc A vision of the future The framework process has also seen engagement and pub- lic consultation taking place with local councillors, North- wich Town Council, Northwich Business Improvement District (BID), Barons Quay manage- ment, the police, and students from Sir John Deane’s Sixth Form College. ● Continued from page one ● Continued from page one A Cheshire Fire Service spokesperson said: “Firefighters trained in swift water rescues were deployed to rescue those who were trapped and they were evacuated safely.” Major roads around Nantwich were closed as a result of more flooding and in Northwich the town centre emergency plan was activated. Roads in the Crewe area were also affected. Cheshire Police said they were inun- dated with flood related calls that were not police related. As the storm hit a flood alert was put in place for theRiverWeaver catchment, includ- ing Nantwich,Winsford and Northwich.