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Summer Reading Challenge for 2019

Posted on Friday 12th July 2019 at 9:52 pm by SH (Editor)

Space Chase, Summer reading Challenge 2019.

Get ready for an out-of–this-world adventure at the library this summer – it’s Space Chase, the Summer Reading Challenge 2019.

Our super space family, the Rockets, need your help to track down books that have been nabbed by aliens!

As you read six library books over the summer, collect special stickers (including some stinky ones!) to complete your mission folder and get your medal and certificate. It’s fun and free to take part!

Please encourage your children to visit the library and sign up and see the difference the Summer Reading Challenge makes to their reading.

“My son really enjoyed the challenge and it kept him motivated to keep reading over the school holidays which will really help when he goes back to school.” (parent, Cadbury Heath)

“It was fun, cool, amazing and I loved it.” (child, Bradley Stoke)

This year’s Reading Challenge runs from Saturday 13th July to Saturday 14th September.

South Gloucestershire libraries are also staging FREE drop-in activity sessions throughout the school holidays (see below for local events).

More: Reading Challenge activities at Bradley Stoke Library »

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Working group formed to tackle “spike” in ASB

Posted on Monday 8th July 2019 at 9:34 pm by SH (Editor)

Community safeguarding event organised in response to a spike in anti-social behaviour in Bradley Stoke.

Local organisations have formed a working group to coordinate a proactive approach to community concerns following a recent spike in anti-social behaviour, which has since reduced, and concerns regarding risk-taking behaviour in Bradley Stoke.

Whilst levels of anti-social behaviour in Bradley Stoke are generally low, they do fluctuate and occasionally there is an increase which causes understandable concern and frustration.

The group, which is formed of Avon & Somerset Police, Bradley Stoke Town Council, Bradley Stoke Community School, Bradley Stoke Leisure Centre, the Willow Brook Centre and other agencies, first met late in May and discussed a range of issues and incidents that have occurred recently across Bradley Stoke.

Figures show an increase in anti-social behaviour in Bradley Stoke in recent months, although it was noted that reported cases are not on the scale that other areas of South Gloucestershire have witnessed in recent years. However, it was also noted that some comments made in recent weeks on social media, and in some Facebook groups, regarding the levels of anti-social behaviour do not reflect the level of reported cases and have created a perception that the issue is far worse than it is in reality.

Where anti-social and risk-taking behaviour is occurring, it has been found recently to be across a range of ages and has the involvement of young people from a whole range of different backgrounds.

The group agreed a set of main concerns which it would seek to address over the coming months:

  • Hype on social media is, in effect, demonising young people in Bradley Stoke and ‘painting them all with the same brush’.
  • A relatively small group of young people are having a large effect on Bradley Stoke and the perception of young people as a whole.
  • Some evidence of small groups of young people in the area engaging in risky behaviour.
  • A lack of parental awareness over where their children are, who they are with and what they are actually doing.
  • A general lack of respect amongst a minority of young people in the area towards adults.
  • The availability of drugs to young people in the area.

More: Next steps | How you can help »

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Willow Brook lodges appeal against “McDonald’s & Starbucks” planning refusal

Posted on Monday 8th July 2019 at 12:55 pm by SH (Editor)

Willow Brook Centre: Planning appeal lodged.

Agents acting on behalf of Bradley Stoke’s Willow Brook shopping centre have lodged an appeal against South Gloucestershire Council’s decision to refuse planning permission for two new drive-through food and drink units (foreseen to be occupied by McDonald’s and Starbucks) and two new retail units at the town centre site.

The controversial planning application, submitted in March 2018, was first denied permission by the local authority’s Development Management Committee in February 2019 and then again in March 2019 by the higher-level Spatial Planning Committee.

Officers at South Gloucestershire Council had originally recommended that the application be approved, but it was ‘called in’ for a decision to be made by council members.

An appeal application form dated 28th June 2019 has recently been published on the council’s planning portal, however, at the time of writing, it has not yet appeared as a live case on the Planning Inspectorate website.

The applicant has requested that the appeal be determined by way of a hearing (which the Journal understands would be open to the press and public).

The Spatial Planning Committee’s grounds for refusing the application, which will be scrutinised by the appointed planning inspector, were:

The proposed development, if permitted, would result in a harmful concentration of food and drink uses resulting in a prejudicial impact on residential amenity due to noise, general disturbance, fumes, smells, and late night activity. The proposed development is therefore contrary to policy PSP8 and PSP35 of the South Gloucestershire Local Plan: Policies, Sites and Places Plan (Adopted) November 2017.

Furthermore, the application is contrary to the three objectives in paragraph 8 of the National Planning Policy Framework (February 2019) in that the development fails to promote the economic, social and environmental character of the area.

To read the full history of the case, visit our Planning Applications of Note page or the archive of posts with the PT18/1491/O tag.

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Church’s community fridge proving a big hit

Posted on Sunday 7th July 2019 at 6:24 pm by SH (Editor)

Photo of the official opening of the community fridge at Cafe Church.

A new initiative to cut food waste and tackle food poverty has been started through the installation of a self-service community fridge at a church in Stoke Lodge.

Café Church Bristol (formerly known as Amberley Road Baptist Church) has installed the fridge in a self-contained outhouse that has been built into a recess within the existing church building.

Three times a week, volunteers from the church collect unwanted produce from two local supermarkets (Marks & Spencer and Lidl) in order to re-stock the fridge. In the first week of operation, the partner stores provided large quantities of fresh fruit and veg, along with bread and other bakery products.

The first visitors make their selections from the produce in the fully stocked fridge.

Unlike foodbanks, which require their users to be referred by local agencies through a voucher scheme, community fridges are open for everyone to use. They complement foodbanks by providing a source of fresh food (as opposed to long life products) and typically have more flexible opening hours.

Local residents can also place their own excess food in the fridge, so that others can make use of it and prevent it going to waste. This might be fruit and veg from people who ‘grow their own’ and have more than they can use themselves, or food that would otherwise be disposed off before going on holiday.

The food collected from stores has gone past its ‘best before’ but is still good enough to eat. Volunteers check the contents of the fridge twice a day, but say it is ultimately up to the person taking the food to check that it’s OK. No food past its ‘sell by date’ is allowed.

More: Full instructions for use are displayed alongside the fridge »

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