Tuesday, 21 August 2007

Empress Ward Community Partnership Open Forum

Police in Farnborough are taking steps to make the neighbourhood safer and they want you to get involved by attending the Empress Ward Community Partnership Open Forum.
The forum will give residents the opportunity to meet the local policing team and other partner agencies and raise any concerns or issues they may have.
Beat manager for Farnborough town centre and Empress neighbourhood, PC Lee Jeffers, said: “I would like to introduce myself and my colleague, PC Beverley Woodhead, as the Safer Neighbourhood Team police officers, dedicated to the Empress and town centre neighbourhoods of Farnborough.
“Safer Neighbourhoods was introduced in Hampshire and the Isle of Wight this year and is our commitment to improving your quality of life by working together with partners and targeting the issues that you identify as those that matter.“A Safer Neighbourhood Team can be made up of police officers, police community support officers (PCSOs), community wardens, special constables, volunteers and partners, all working together in partnership.“Your Safer Neighbourhoods team is committed to dealing with your problems and priorities on a community based level.“By inviting the community to our open forum and engaging with residents I hope that people will feel happy and able to approach either myself or PC Woodhead with any concerns they may have.
“The Empress Ward Community Partnership Open Forum will be held on Tuesday, October 2, from 7pm at Rushmoor Borough Council Offices on Farnborough Road.“At the forum you will be able to meet your local policing team, discuss any concerns you may have and hear about the community work which is already progressing in your community.”
If you are not a resident in the town centre or Empress neighbourhood but would like information on community engagement events in your area, please contact your local beat team on 0845 045 4545 or visit the local policing pages of the Hampshire Constabulary website at

Friday, 17 August 2007

Recycling Facts and costs for Rushmoor

Every year, the average dustbin contains enough unrealised energy for 500 baths, 3500 showers or 5,000 hours of television. [source: www.assurre.org]


Amazingly, recycling it requires only 5% of the energy it takes to make new aluminium – and produces only 5% of the CO2 emissions. [source:


Producing steel from recycled material saves 75% of the energy needed for steel made from virgin material [source:
www.scrib.org ]
Every steel can is 100% recyclable. It can be recycled over and over again into products like bicycles and of course new cans [source:
www.recycle-more.co.uk ]


Glass can be recycled again and again without losing its clarity or purity [source:
www.britglass.co.uk ]
· Making glass bottles and jars from recycled ones saves energy. The energy saving from recycling one bottle will: - Power a 100 watt light bulb for almost an hour - Power a computer for 20 minutes - Power a colour TV for 15 minutes - Power a washing machine for 10 minutes [source:
www.britglass.co.uk ]
Probably the most important thing about recycling glass is the energy saving – when using recycled glass to make new containers, 315Kg of CO2 is saved for every tonne of recycled glass used. [source: "Glass Recycling - Life Cycle Carbon Dioxide Emissions. A Life Cycle Analysis Report". Prepared for British Glass by Enviros Consulting Ltd November 2003.]

Plastic Bottles

Recycling just one plastic bottle saves enough energy to power a 60W light bulb for six hours [Source: Recoup]


70% less energy is required to recycle paper compared with making it from raw materials.

Sale of recyclate

Last year, the Council had an income of £46,500 from sale of blue bin material.

Impact of recycling on the larger environmental debate

It is difficult to find factual information on this topic, however to give some indication, this statement was released by the Waste and Resources Action Programme (WRAP).

Current UK recycling saves 10-15 million tonnes of CO2 equivalent greenhouse gases a year. This is equivalent to taking 3.5 million cars off the road. By recycling, everyone can make a difference on climate change. [Source: WRAP, May 2006]

Waste Collection Costs

Broadly speaking, the costs of waste collection in Rushmoor (based on the figure

reported in our Council Tax leaflet) is £2,084,000.

Moving to AWC alone would save £138,200 in collection costs, plus an additional £20,000 of income from additional recycling

Moving to smaller bin emptied weekly would cost the Council approximately £120,000 in collection costs, plus £36,000p.a. capital equivalent for new bins and generate an estimated £17,000 income from additional recycling

Fortnightly kerbside glass would cost the Council approximately £269,500 p.a.

Tuesday, 14 August 2007

New Council "report it on-line" link

The Council have launched a new "report it on line" web link.
Unfortunately it is not the most obvious of links on the very cluttered front page of the Council Web site. So I have reproduced it here as a hyperlink


It is a very good idea - just needs a little higher profile!

Farnborough Town Centre (click image to enlarge)

Friday, 10 August 2007

Foot & Mouth Update from Rushmoor's Chief Executive

There have been a few developments since my last message. We remain within the outer Surveillance Zone which extends to a range of 10kms around the two inner Protection Zones near Pirbright. This has no real impact on daily life within the Borough although all livestock movements remain banned which has led to closure of the Abattoir in North Camp.
Following tests which proved negative, the land at Hawley Meadows has been re-opened and no changes are proposed currently to the boundary of the Surveillance Area.
It was announced this morning that a temporary Protection Area had been declared around a farm near Dorking where some animals had shown symptoms but this could yet turn out to be a false alarm. Indeed early indications are that this is the case.
Legionnaires Disease
There has also been coverage in the national press about the possibility of a link between the laboratory in Pirbright which is at the centre of the Foot and Mouth outbreak and some recent cases of Legionnaires Disease amongst residents in North Hampshire and Surrey. I can confirm that our colleagues in Environmental Health have been involved in an investigation into a small cluster of Legionnaires' Disease cases in Surrey and North Hampshire and are working with the Health Protection Agency and Consultants in Communicable Disease Control for Hampshire and Surrey. Recent press coverage suggests that the laboratory has been cleared of any direct involvement but it is important to recognise that Legionnaires' Disease is caused by a type of bacterium that is widely found in the environment. If the organism is inhaled in aerosol form it can cause the disease.
Across the UK, there has been a sharp rise in the number or cases, up 60% since 2005. More information is available on Legionella at
I would stress though that there is absolutely no cause for concern, the numbers are small and considerable effort is being put into isolating the cause.

Meeting Rushmoor's Waste Tsar

Yesterday I arranged a meeting with David Quirk (Head of Environmental Health) the officer at Rushmoor advising members on Waste Collection and recycling. David is what I consider a very down to earth, practical and professional officer.
The reason for the meeting was for me to better understand some of the issues around our current efforts to increase recycling in the Borough.
One thing that came as a complete surprise to me was that recycling glass is more efficient than making glass from virgin material. This is not true of many recyclable products like many plastics where the recycling process is less efficient and more costly than working with virgin material. It struck me that this being the case, glass should have been one of the first household collections, not one of the last.
I also discussed my concern about the survey of the trial area, and the questions which I thought could have been put more clearly. To my surprise this had been shown to the all party group of councillors that recommended the trial - and no one said a thing!! On reflection I do think the trial should also have included the reduced bin size option (two options were recommended alternate weekly collection or weekly reduced bin size). It would be odd, if we decided this was the best option, that we have not trialed it.
We also talked about the latest advice from WRAP an organisation that gives advice on waste collection and recycling, and has recently recommended to local authorities to collect putrifiable waste weekly. Again this pushes Councils that take this advise seriously towards the reduced bin size option.
Finally we talked about keeping and building on the good relationship the Council generally has with residents. Rushmoor sees itself very much as working with - not against residents. I have been very concerned that this whole issue is in danger of spoiling that special relationship that has taken years to build, but could be lost so easily within months. Government targets, lobby groups and newspaper campaigns have sometimes clouded rather than illuminated solutions to the growing need and awareness to care for our environment. Up until this point we have been slowly increasing our recycling, however, although slow, it has been very much a happy partnership between council and residents. I do not want that lost..
I was reassured by David Quirk that he felt as strongly about that as I do, and reminded me that his department was committed to a pledge - if residents do all they can do, the waste management team will ensure residents are assisted. If you have a big family and the bin is not big enough and you are doing all you can do - you will get help with a bigger bin. If you have other special circumstances and are doing all you can do, but are experiencing problems - David's team will not let you down, or leave you with the problem they will help solve it.
So the meeting concluded on a very positive note. I still have grave concerns about alternate weekly collections. I do understand the need to do something, and not simply stand still. It will be interesting to see what the report of the trial tells us, and what recommendations will be presented. I along with residents await with interest.

Thursday, 9 August 2007

Money for "not rearing pigs"

Rt Hon David Miliband MP
Secretary of State.
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA)
Nobel House
17 Smith Square
London SW1P 3JR

16 May 2007

Dear Secretary of State,

My friend, who is in farming at the moment, recently received a cheque for £3,000 from the Rural Payments Agency for not rearing Pigs. I would now like to join the "not rearing pigs" business.

In your opinion, what is the best kind of farm not to rear pigs on, and which is the best breed of pigs not to rear? I want to be sure I approach this endeavour in keeping with all government policies, as dictated by the EU under the Common Agricultural Policy. I would prefer not to rear bacon pigs, but if this is not the type you want not rearing, I will just as gladly not rear porkers. Are there any advantages in not rearing rare breeds such as Saddlebacks or Gloucester Old Spots, or are there too many people already not rearing these?

As I see it, the hardest part of this programme will be keeping an accurate record of how many pigs I haven't reared. Are there any Government or Local Authority courses on this?

My friend is very satisfied with this business. He has been rearing pigs for forty years or so, and the best he ever made on them was £1,422 in 1968. That is - until this year, when he received a cheque for not rearing any.

If I get £3,000 for not rearing 50 pigs, will I get £6,000 for not rearing 100?

I plan to operate on a small scale at first, holding myself down to about 4,000 pigs not raised. which will mean about £240,000 for the first year? As I become more expert in not rearing pigs, I plan to be more ambitious, perhaps increasing to, say, 40,000 pigs not reared in my second year, for which I should expect about £2.4 million from your department.

Incidentally, I wonder if I would be eligible to receive tradable carbon credits for all these pigs not producing harmful and polluting methane gases.

Another point: These pigs that I plan not to rear will not eat 2,000 tonnes of cereals. I understand that you also pay farmers for not growing crops. Will I qualify for payments for not growing cereals to not feed the pigs I don't rear? I am also considering the "not milking cows" business, so please send any information you have on that too.

Please could you also include the current Defra advice on set aside fields? Can this be done on an e-commerce basis with virtual fields (of which I seem to have several thousand hectares)?

In view of the above you will realise that I will be totally unemployed, and will therefore qualify for unemployment benefits.

I shall of course be voting for your party at the next general election.

Yours faithfully,

Monday, 6 August 2007

Foot & Mouth - Rushmoor Statement

Andrew Lloyd the Council Chief Executive has put out the following statement:

"Residents are being reassured that there is no risk to public health following the discovery of foot and mouth disease in cattle in Surrey on Friday.
Although Aldershot and Farnborough are within the ten-kilometre Defra surveillance zone, the disease cannot be passed to humans and all footpaths and common land areas remain open.
This means people do not need to stay away from the countryside, but are asked to follow any precautionary measures in place on livestock premises, such as disinfection.
The abattoir in North Camp is closed and there is a national ban in place on the movement of livestock.
Rushmoor Borough Council will continue to liaise closely with Hampshire County Council, Defra and the national Animal Health Service to monitor the situation.
Anyone concerned about the disease can find more information on the Defra website,
They can also contact either the Defra helpline, 0845 9335577 or Hampshire County Council’s helpline on 01962 844106."

Trolley Madness

We are experiencing an ongoing problem with trolleys being abandoned all over the town and residential areas. I have reported many an abandoned trolley, but it is now time to fine the supermarkets. So, following complaints by residents and our local beat police officers, I have sent an email to members of the Rushmoor cabinet requesting they place a priority on adopting the legislation needed to start fining the supermarkets, and in particular get ASDA to start dealing with this problem with enthusiasm rather than the half hearted approach they have been taking recently.
Do you have a trolley problem in your area?

Thursday, 2 August 2007

My nephews Connor & Nathan

Just to prove good looks run in the family!! I discussed alternate weekly collections with them in great detail. Connor did not like the idea of Nathans nappies in the bin for two weeks. Nathan was to embarrassed to comment.

Wednesday, 1 August 2007

Hampshire Police Competition

Development at Solartron Road, Farnborough

We have received confirmation from Pavillion Housing (who are rehousing residents in Firgrove Court) that the developer, KPI, will commence building the new flats at Solartron Road on the 3 September 2007.
The duration of the work is expected to be 40 weeks and we expect to take handover of the new flats in June 2008.

Government advisors finally agree with me!

WRAP a body that advises local authorities on behalf of Government, has finally recognised the issues surrounding alternate weekly collections. Issues that I have been raising for a while, and taking flak over from fellow councillors that "know better". Still no hard feelings. Better late than never.

See http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk_politics/6923924.stm

The full report recommended to Rushmoor from the all party task group looking at waste collection in Rushmoor can be seen at http://www.rushmoor.gov.uk/media/adobepdf/b/f/Item_4_1.pdf