Council faces ?700,000
bill on housing offices
by David Skentelbery
A REVIEW of housing offices at Warrington has shown that four require major refurbishment and a fifth will have to be completely demolished and rebuilt.
The borough council faces an estimated bill of ?500,000 for the refurbishment work at the offices at Bank House, Bewsey, Longford and Festival Avenue.
A further ?223,000 will be needed to demolish and replace the Westy housing office although officers are recommending this project should be delayed until next year when the financial position can be clarified.
The condition of housing offices is taken into account by the Housing Inspectorate when considering additional funding to help meeting “decent homes” standards and a survey carried out two years ago revealed that many were cramped and in a poor condition.
Originally it was thought the cost of all the work, including rebuilding the Westy office, would be about ?574,000. But additional work, including asbestos removal, repairing leaking roofs and complying with the Disability Discrimination Act, has now been identified.
Officers say the refurbishment work should go ahead but the rebuilding project be delayed until next year.
Refurbishing the Bewsey housing office alone with cost ?248,900.
MP wants a national
strategy for arthritis
by Terry Johnson
WITH debilitating arthritis costing the UK economy a massive ?18bn-a-year, a Warrington MP is calling for a national strategy for dealing with the painful disease.
Helen Jones, (pictured)member for Warrington North, said more than 8.5m people suffered from osteoarthritis and a further 500,000 from other forms of the disabling disease.
Yet arthritis was not even included in the recently published GP Contract.
“It seems to me that the scale of the problem demands a national strategy. I am calling for Government action on this issue.”
Ms Jones’ focus on health issues also included a call for clear and effective treatment guidelines for lymphoedema in medical staff training.
“This can be a distressing and painful malfunction of the lymphatic system”, stated Ms Jones.
“A greater awareness of the problem within primary medical care needs to be suppported by more effective treatment guidelines, better training of medical staff and increased support for initiatives in treatment – such as the expert patient scheme and Macmillan mobile services”.
by Gary Skentelbery
Culcheth based Wire Solutions Ltd officially opened their new offices as they celebrated the expansion of their business.
To mark the occasion the Mayor of Warrington visited the premises on Common Lane and was presented with a cheque for over ?100 for St Rocco’s Hospice, one of his two chosen charities during his year of office.
Wire Solutions is one of a network of more than 80 national partners recruited by BT to offer the full range of BT products to local businesses employing between 1 and 50 people. The business has already created ten full-time permanent jobs and is indirectly supporting a number of other businesses and organisations in the local area.
Director Mike Visagie said: “We, basically, take the hassle out of technology by offering our customers a unique “human” service provided by our friendly and accessible team. Our dedicated and enthusiastic staff provide expert advice, over the telephone, by email or face-to-face to businesses. All this backed by the support of the BT organisation means we are able to offer a huge resource of expertise from a local point of contact; which we believe makes a difference to our customers and their business.”
Dr. Carsten Kressel, Head of Economic Development for Warrington Borough Council, who attended the launch event, said: “Warrington Borough Council believe that the IT and communications sector is very important to the area and are extremely pleased to welcome Wire Solutions to Culcheth. Their decision to locate in the borough further strengthens Warrington?s position as a prime location for the ICT and telecommunications industry.”
Craig Rowland, Managing Director, BT Business, said; “The creation of BT Local Business has been the biggest, fastest transformation from direct to indirect sales in our industry. The localised service we offer is now very popular with both customers and regional business communities.”
by our correspondent
A 17-year-old Warrington youth was arrested at a camp site in Cumbria after allegedly brandishing a machete or Samurai sword.
Armed police were sent to the camp site on the shore of Ullswater, near Penrith following reports that someone was running around shouting and brandishing a machete or Samurai sword.
A party was taking place and it is understood it had got out of hand.
The 17-year-old from Birchwood was arrested by unarmed police. But armed police were deployed because of the possibility of a threat.
A spokesman for Cumbria Police said the youth had not threatened anyone with the weapon but was arrested for being in possession of a knife.
A 19-year-old from Salford was also arrested for a breach of the peace.
UNIVERSITY College Chester is holding an Open Evening on Thursday September 9 for part time undergraduate and postgraduate courses at Warrington campus.
Information will be available on full and part-time courses leading to a degree in: Business Management, Computer Science, Early Years (Foundation Degree), Early Years Education, Internet Technologies, Network and Communication Systems, Social Work, Sport Development, Sport Management, Teaching Assistance, MBA and MSc Information Systems>
For further information contact Andrea Harper on 01925 534325 or email firstname.lastname@example.org or Jayne Thomas on 01925 534352 or email email@example.com
Police support officers
arrive in October
by Lesley Wilkinson
NEW Community Support Officers (CSO’s) to assist with the work of the police in south Warrington, should take up their posts from October 1.
Coun Peter Walker told Stockton Heath Parish Council that the service level agreement, between Cheshire Constabulary and South Warrington Parishes Community Support Officers Group, had been signed.
Plans are for the five officers to work in the parishes of Appleton, Grappenhall and Thelwall, Lymm, Stockton Heath and Stretton.
He said the plans were to recruit new officers from the community, rather than bring in officers from Halton, where there is an over supply.