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Weekly recycling collections to start in June

Posted on Friday 19th May 2017 at 9:10 pm by SH (Editor)

Photo of a 'Romaquip' recycling collection vehicle.

Slimline black bins (140-litre in place of 240-litre) to be introduced later this year.

South Gloucestershire Council has announced that weekly kerbside recycling collections will start on 19th June, marking the first stage in the introduction of a new waste strategy designed to reduce the amount of waste going to landfill, meet recycling targets and save money.

Later in the year, once the new weekly recycling regime has become established, the current 240-litre black bins for non-recyclable household waste will be swapped for smaller 140-litre bins. The council says the old bins will be collected and sold for onward processing where the plastic will be recycled into new recycling boxes. The net cost of purchasing the new bins is £1m.

The simplified recycling service, which runs under the motto “recycle everything, every week” will cover paper, cardboard, plastics, cans, cartons and glass. The weekly food service will continue and residents can continue to use plastic bags to line the food bin.

The council has purchased new ‘single pass’ vehicles to enable it to replace the current two-vehicle system used for recycling collections. The new ‘Romaquips’ can collect all recycling in one go and are claimed to have a longer life span than the current vehicles. By using these vehicles, the council says it can deliver weekly recycling for the same cost as the old two-vehicle fortnightly service. The old vehicles will be sold and the revenue used to help fund the new vehicles at a net cost of £5m.

Residents will still need to sort their recycling for collection but can choose to use their existing containers or green boxes instead of bags for plastics and cardboard. The weekly collections will mean that there is less recycling for residents to store at home over two weeks, whilst encouraging more people to use the service. Additional green boxes will be made available.

More: Bin hangers and roadshows will be used to inform residents »

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Fruits of community art project installed at new skate park

Posted on Thursday 18th May 2017 at 9:47 pm by SH (Editor)

Photo of a community art panel being installed at Bradley Stoke Skate Park.

Two enormous street art murals recently installed at the new skate park in the grounds of Bradley Stoke Leisure Centre have been attracting the attention of passers-by and visitors to the park.

The installation marks the completion of a community art project which involved over 30 children and young people and was part-funded by a community grant award from South Gloucestershire Council.

The project started during the October half-term with local children and young people working with two experienced mural and graffiti artists (Tom Sledmore and Jack Tierney from The Paintsmiths in Bristol), alongside Graham Baker, Bradley Stoke Town Council’s youth development worker.

An initial half-day workshop based at the skate park comprised an introduction to mural and graffiti art, including an extremely popular ‘have a go’ session. Over twenty young people participated and many proudly took home their own artworks on small 4’ x 2’ boards.

On Saturday 28th January, there was a further street art project session, this time focusing on the designs for the two large pieces. The two artists worked with the young people and some exciting designs started to take shape. The designs were then shared and discussed more widely in youth work sessions and further suggestions made.

A final design session took place at the skate park on a late afternoon in mid-March and was immediately followed by what Graham describes as “a whole and extremely long weekend of painting”. More than ten young people worked with Graham and the two experienced artists, in accordance with the previously agreed designs, to produce two large and impressive pieces of art, both 10 metres wide by 2.5 metres high.

More: Participation through extensive use of stencilling techniques »

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Sponsorship brings new kit for BSYFC girls

Posted on Monday 15th May 2017 at 9:48 pm by SH (Editor)

Photo of Bradley Stoke Youth FC girls in training kit sponsored by AV Birch Limited.

The girls’ teams at Bradley Stoke Youth FC (BSYFC) have smart new training kits, thanks to a £400 donation from national engineering company AV Birch Limited.

The sponsorship was arranged through Lewis, guardian of one of the BSYFC girl players, who contacted club coach Lee Lawson, suggesting the company he was working with could potentially donate funds to the team.

AV Birch were working in the area and wanted to give something back to the local community. This was great timing, as Lee was already in the process of looking into sourcing kit for the girls.

Lee said:

“The coaches, players and parents of BSYFC would like to extend their thanks and gratitude to David Tilsley-Curtis of AV Birch Limited for enabling the team to purchase the training kit. On the night the training kit was given out there was a great sense of excitement and the girls couldn’t wait to get home and try it all on.”

“The players all look great in their new kit. They are really happy; it makes them look and feel like a team.”

BSYFC was established in 1998. It is an FA Charter Standard Community Club covering all age ranges from Reception age upwards. It also runs football sessions for children with disabilities.

The club won the FA Charter Standard Community Club Award in 2016 and was runner-up in the Bristol Post Sports Awards for Community Clubs in 2016.

More: Girls train on Friday evenings at BSCS »

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MetroBus operator announcement delayed (again)

Posted on Saturday 13th May 2017 at 6:52 pm by SH (Editor)

Artist's impression of a MetroBus stop with iPoint.

The announcement about which company (or companies) will be operating services on Bristol’s new MetroBus network has been delayed once again, this time until after the general election on 8th June, the Journal can reveal.

Last summer, a West of England Partnership spokesperson said that negotiations with potential operators were expected to conclude by mid-September (2016), but it was later revealed that talks had been delayed because of the need to consider scenarios where services on a route are run by more than one operator.

Then, earlier this year, it was stated that a formal announcement would not be made until after the Metro Mayor election on 4th May, for fear it might become a political issue – and the same reasoning is behind the latest delay, this time because of the general election.

A spokesperson stressed that any operator can choose to operate services on a MetroBus route, provided they sign up to a defined set of quality standards relating to vehicles, minimum frequencies, maximum fares etc. known as the Quality Partnership Scheme. There is no ‘operator selection’ decision to be made by the officers or members of any local council or authority.

Once the MetroBus roadworks in Bradley Stoke are completed in June, the next sign of activity is likely to be the installation of so-called iPoints at the new MetroBus stops, currently scheduled for August.

An iPoint is an information tower that is approximately 3.2 metres high and 56cm wide. These will incorporate one or two real-time information (RTI) screens, a touch screen to allow customers to buy tickets, a chip and PIN reader for payments and a smartcard reader for topping-up existing smart cards. The ticket purchasing function will supply both single tickets and smartcards.

• For more information on MetroBus, visit

More: Notable dates (key project milestones until autumn) »

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Bradley Stoke in Bloom April update

Posted on Wednesday 10th May 2017 at 5:10 pm by SH (Editor)

Photo of Bradley Stoke in Bloom volunteers on Sherbournes Brake Roundabout.

An update from Sara Messenger of the Bradley Stoke in Bloom group.

Twinned roundabout

Winter may have been a quiet time for our ‘in bloom’ group, but it seems that spring is not! Spurred on by the Twinning Association visit by a party from Champs-sur-Marne, we bought forward our April workday so that we could include the group in our ‘French roundabout’ project. Well, that was the plan! However, there was a clash in their schedule meaning they weren’t about to help on the day. We couldn’t get a French skep (straw beehive) or a ‘twinned with…’ sign, but apart from that, the day went well!

We chose Sherbournes Brake Roundabout (at the junction of Brook Way, Baileys Court Road and Orpheus Avenue) and have planted French lavender, campanula, penstemon, delphinium and phlox – only choosing plants that will have white or purple flowers. The centre piece is a rather English WBC beehive (named after William Broughton Carr). We know this, as a couple of members from Little Stoke Beekeepers’ Association stopped by and told us! But we did know some bee history that they didn’t: that Childeric the 1st was the first of the French monarchs to have used the bee as a symbol of ‘immortality and resurrection’!

The hive is just for decoration; as it has no base or combs, it isn’t a suitable home for any real bees.

Our thanks must go to Almondsbury Garden Centre for donating the bedding plants and to the neighbours, Lula and Brain who bought us out cold drinks and have promised to water the plants for us. The popularity of this project and its use as a handy landmark has made us think that we should bring forward our plans for some of the other roundabouts in the town.

More: Easter decorations, Jubilee Green and best garden competition »

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