Category: Bedford Borough Council

Call for motorists to help children stay safe near schools

Campaigning schoolchildren included Wootton-based Holywell School students

Bedford Borough Liberal Democrats have issued a plea for motorists to help children stay safe, following a debate on children’s road safety at a Council meeting last week.

At the Children’s Services Overview and Scrutiny Committee (OSC), councillors heard from children from Wootton. They have been campaigning on the issue of road safety in their community.

The schoolchildren raised a wide range of issues, and in response Council representatives set out work that will take place to address them. This will include the appointment of a new school crossing patrol, assessing bus stops and crossings in the area and reviewing road safety information campaigns for young people.

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Bedford Christmas Lights switch-on and fair – Saturday 23 and Sunday 24 November

For the first time, Bedford’s Christmas lights switch-on will take place on a Sunday after a weekend of fun and frolics with a free Christmas fair.

Saturday 23 November and Sunday 24 November sees a Christmas fair come to Harpur Square. From 10am until 5pm on both days, the Square will be full of food stalls, entertainment with choirs, music and dance performances on the stage, balloon modelling and free fairground rides.

There will be over thirty craft traders on the Square and in the Harpur Suite, plus seasonal stalls and local businesses alongside two vintage fair rides which will be free to go on. The Transformers will be visiting on Saturday, and Anna and Elsa from ‘Frozen’ will be coming on the Sunday.

This festive fun will come to a fantastic climax with the fireworks show at 5.30pm on the Embankment with Father Christmas turning on the Christmas lights in Bedford. This is also completely free to attend.

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Progress update on the A6 Wilstead Bypass reconstruction

The completion date for the project to rebuild the A6 past Wilstead has been delayed to March 2020, after on-site testing revealed that more works are required than originally thought.

The A6 past Wilstead is currently being rebuilt. This stretch of road was originally built in the 1970s, but had become too dangerous for normal road use after its foundations had collapsed.

Extensive work on the project has already been completed including the removal of the existing road surface and kerbs along with a large section of the underlying concrete layer, and the start of the removal of the old road foundations.

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Bedford Borough Council joins Refill Bedford

Bedford Borough Council has signed up as a Refill Station, joining Refill Bedford creating a network of local places where people can go fill up their reusable water bottle for free.

‘Refill’ is a nationwide campaign working to connect people with thousands of local businesses, community venues, transport hubs and public fountains where they can refill for free. They have launched a free ‘Refill App’ where anyone can find Refill Stations where they can refill on the go.

It is estimated that a million plastic bottles are purchased every minute, and plastic bottles make up a third of all plastic pollution in the sea.

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‘Somewhere Safe to Stay’ in the heart of Bedford Town Centre

Bedford Borough Council has extended services for people sleeping rough with the opening of an ‘Assessment & Somewhere Safe to Stay’ Hub. The Hub will be open 24 hours a day, offering emergency homelessness advice and somewhere safe for people who are sleeping rough to stay for a short time.

Professional advice will be on offer from a variety of support services to help people find the best way back into a settled home.

Bedford has seen a reduction in the number of people sleeping rough on the streets. The most recent Annual Rough Sleeper Estimate showed that a third fewer people were sleeping rough from 76 in November 2017 to 51 in November 2018.

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Bedford Borough Council advice for buying a new furry friend

A new furry friend can make a great addition to the family. But Bedford Borough Council is warning residents to be cautious and carry out checks after reports of illegal puppy trading.

Bad dealers and breeders are selling puppies that are too young, imported from other countries, haven’t had the appropriate vaccinations, and without the right paperwork.

This can result in the puppies being quarantined and not allowed to go to their new owners.

The Dogs Trust also has concerns about the welfare of the puppies caught in the illegal dog trade. This can leave unsuspecting families picking up the pieces when they just wanted to give a puppy a home.

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Halloween half-term fun at The Higgins Bedford and libraries

There’s half-term fun to be had in Bedford Borough, with activities and events at the local museum and art gallery, and all five Borough libraries.

‘Enter the World of Dreams and Nightmares’ is the theme for half-term activities at The Higgins Bedford, following the opening of new exhibition ‘Dreams and Nightmares’.

Borough libraries will have different Halloween crafts and activities throughout the week and all for free. Children can make Halloween magnets, spooky finger puppets, Autumn wreaths, spooky bunting and lots more.

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Free tennis programme of Addison Howard Park

National sports charity ‘Tennis For Free’ has invested in a programme of free tennis at Addison Howard Park, Kempston.

In partnership with Bedford Borough Council and the LTA, Tennis For Free will provide free coach-led tennis sessions for all the family for one year as part of its aim to use tennis to improve the physical and mental wellbeing of all members of the community across the UK.

Addison Howard Tennis For Free sessions will be led by professional tennis coach Ryan Bezer and everyone is welcome, you don’t need a racket or a ball as all equipment is provided free of charge. All you need to do is sign up.

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Empty Homes Week 2019 in Bedford Borough

Bedford Borough Council works all year round to bring long-term empty homes back into use and this Empty Homes Week is celebrating successes from around the Borough.

Success stories have included the creation of two modern, semi-detached bungalows in Sharnbrook where the previous property had stood empty for 7 years and had become derelict, and a local eyesore. The two bungalows have been developed and marketed by ASKWilson Builders and are expected to be occupied soon.

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Bedford Borough online schools admissions now open

Bedford Borough Council’s online admissions systems is now open to all parents and carers whose children are due to transfer to secondary or upper school in September 2020.

Borough parents who have a child in year 6 at primary school or year 8 at a middle school will need to transfer their child to a secondary school or upper school in next year.

The transfers to Secondary 2020 round and to Upper 2020 round are available from Thursday 12 September 2019 via the Council website.

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Boys to be offered HPV vaccine for the first time

A free Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) vaccine will be offered to boys for the first time to help prevent the spread of HPV and stop certain types of cancers forming.

HPV is linked to 5% of all cancers worldwide causing the majority of genital cancers as well as some cancers in the neck and head. HPV is very common and can be caught easily through any kind of sexual contact with another person who already has it.

It is estimated that by vaccinating boys in year eight at school, as well as girls, it will prevent around 64,000 cervical cancers and around 50,000 non-cervical cancers affecting men and women by 2058.

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