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Aztec Hotel & Spa team serve up a treat for Street Life charity

Posted on Sunday 20th October 2019 at 2:09 pm by SH (Editor)

Photo of staff from Aztec Hotel & Spa working with Street Life in Bristol city centre.

The team from Aztec Hotel & Spa joined forces with local Bristol charity Street Life on Saturday 14th September to serve a delicious meal to the homeless community in the city.

This marked the seventh time the hotel has worked with the charity since 2017 and the third time they have provided the food as well as serving the meals.

The hotel’s kitchen team prepared 180 portions of a hearty beef stew and mashed potatoes followed by a choice of either profiteroles or fresh fruit salad. While the chefs moved on to prepare dishes for the hotel’s restaurant, The Curious Kitchen, seven members of staff from across the hotel headed out with other Street Life volunteers to serve the meals to the community.

For over 20 years, Street Life has been providing hot meals, drinks, soup, cold meal packs and clothing on the streets of Bristol. Operated by City Church, the weekly community project recognises the importance of helping those in the city who do not have the same access to facilities as others. Members of the local community, businesses and schools support the charity by volunteering their Saturday evening.

The beef stew was a welcomed new dish for the charity and was incredibly well received. One recipient said: “This is the best meal I’ve ever had.”

Gareth Ireland, general manager of the Aztec Hotel & Spa, said:

“Our aim when we started working with Street Life was to build an ongoing relationship with them. They provide such an invaluable service to the city and we are honoured to be able to assist in any way we can. The team all love being involved and giving something back to help such a worthy cause. We are looking forward to being able to work with Street Life for many years to come.”

More: "Team fitted perfectly in with the charity’s culture" »

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BSCS: Realistically, how close do you have to live?

Posted on Thursday 17th October 2019 at 8:48 pm by SH (Editor)

Map showing Bradley Stoke Community School catchment area in a typical year. Radius: 0.666 mile

Bradley Stoke Community School (BSCS) is one of the most popular schools in South Gloucestershire and it consistently attracts significantly more 1st-preference applications for Year 7 entry than there are places available.

Hence the perennial question we hear around this time of year as parents are making secondary school applications for their offspring: How close do you have to live to BSCS to have a realistic chance of getting in?

In a typical year, around 40 percent of successful entrants are allocated a place without consideration of how far they live from the school because they are in one of the prioritised categories that include: children with special educational needs, looked-after children and siblings of children already at the school.

Once places have been allocated to the prioritised cases, proximity to the school comes into play for the remaining applicants, based on home-to-school distances. Within this process, distances are all measured to three decimal points in a straight line between the address point of the child’s main residence and the address point of the school, using the council’s mapping software, to ensure consistency for all applicants.

It should be added that a second geographical factor, namely residence within the school’s ‘consortium area of responsibility’ (roughly comprising of the Stokes, Filton and Patchway) can theoretically come into play during the process. However, since BSCS opened in 2005, no places at the school have been allocated in any entry year to applicants living outside the consortium area.

As can be seen from the table below, applicants not satisfying the criteria for one of the prioritised categories have typically needed to live within two-thirds of a mile of the school to qualify for a place at BSCS.

Above: Map showing catchment area in a typical year. [Click to enlarge; view larger version (DropBox)]

Table showing Bradley Stoke Community School application statistics 2017-19.

Disclaimer: Past years’ statistics may not be a reliable guide to the actual outcomes in future years, due to changes in demographics and other factors. The description given above is a simplification; please consult the admissions brochure for definitive information.

Related link: Secondary school admissions (SGC)

This article originally appeared in the October 2019 issue of the Bradley Stoke Journal magazine (on page 27). The magazine is delivered FREE, EVERY MONTH (except August), to ALL 8,700 homes in Bradley Stoke. Phone 01454 300 400 to enquire about advertising or leaflet insertion.

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Local building firm steps in to sponsor U12 girls

Posted on Tuesday 15th October 2019 at 8:22 pm by SH (Editor)

Photo of Bradley Stoke Youth FC U12 Girls with representatives from LNJ Construction.

The U12 girls at Bradley Stoke Youth FC are now dressed for success thanks to sponsorship from local building firm LNJ Construction Services Ltd.

Lewis Colling, director at LNJ, whose youngest step-daughter plays for the team, contacted manager/coach Lee Lawson when he heard the team were looking for a kit sponsor.

A conversation about the team and how LNJ could help led to the firm agreeing to sponsor 24 new full match kits, 1 full goalkeeper’s kit and a spare goalkeeper’s shirt.

Lee says he had been in the process of drafting out emails to local businesses prior to Lewis getting in touch and he is pleased that word of mouth brought a quick offer of support.

Once the order was delivered, the girls were presented with their new kit at a photoshoot alongside Lewis and his partners at LNJ, Colin Broomsgrove and John Iles.

Lee Lawson, BSYFC U12 manager/coach, said:

“The girls look fantastic in their new kit and are looking forward to the season. The coaches, girls and parents would like to extend their thanks to Lewis and LNJ for their generosity in sponsoring the team.”

“It’s excellent to see companies like this supporting the local community in which they do business.”

LNJ Construction boasts a combined 76 years of experience covering all building and construction works ranging from basic renovation to new builds.

More: BSYFC is an FA Charter Standard Community Club »

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West of England councils told to start again on strategic housing plan

Posted on Monday 14th October 2019 at 9:10 pm by SH (Editor)

Photo of Cllr Brian Allinson holding JSP consultation documents.

A masterplan that defines the strategy for delivering 105,000 new homes across the West of England by 2036 lies in tatters after government inspectors recommended that it should be rewritten from the ground up.

The Joint Spatial Plan (JSP) was worked on by the councils of Bath and North East Somerset, Bristol City, North Somerset, and South Gloucestershire over a period of more than three years, prior to being submitted to the government in April 2018.

Its purpose is to provide a strategic, overarching vision and framework to help deliver the number of new homes, land for employment purposes and the supporting infrastructure that it is anticipated will be needed over the next 20 years.

One of the main purposes of the JSP is to identify so-called strategic development locations (SDLs) which have the potential to deliver large scale development (500+ dwellings) over the plan period.

A large number of SDLs were identified in an ‘issues and options’ consultation that was put out to the public in November 2015. These were finally whittled down to a list of twelve sites by the time the JSP was submitted for examination by government inspectors last year.

The chosen SDLs in South Gloucestershire are the proposed Buckover Garden Village (Tortworth) along with sites in Charfield, Coalpit Heath, Thornbury and Yate.

A proposed development of 2,000 new homes on the site of Woodlands Golf Course, near Bradley Stoke, didn’t make it into the final list.

But the two government-appointed inspectors who have been examining the JSP for “soundness” over the past 16 months have now dropped a bombshell by stating that they have “significant concerns” over the way the twelve SDLs were selected.

More: Councils urged to return to the drawing board »

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