Elford Village

Village News

Condolences

Elford Parish Council is very sorry to hear about the death of Prince Philip and wishes to express its condolences to Her Majesty the Queen and the Royal Family.

Cricket sessions for children and juniors

There will be cricket sessions for children at Elford Cricket Club on Wednesdays from 12th May to 30th June, 6-7 pm. For details contact stavinor@hotmail.com

Junior sessions for under 13s will take place on Thursdays from 15th April.

Click for Information

 

Supporting businesses to reopen

Businesses across Lichfield District are being urged to seek advice and help as they prepare to reopen in April.

Lichfield District Council is working with local businesses to make sure they have the support they need to get back up and running in readiness for non-essential retail reopening from 12 April. This follows the Government’s announcement in February of the roadmap for the phased lifting of lockdown measures.

This will include distributing Restart Grants to non-essential retail businesses and hospitality, accommodation, leisure, personal care and gym businesses, as soon as the Government issues guidance on how the grants will be paid.   

In the meantime, businesses are being encouraged to check they have Covid-secure arrangements in place for their staff and customers and that all their risk assessments are up to date.

With venues only permitted to serve food and drink outside in step 2 of the roadmap, hospitality venues are being encouraged to take advantage of changes in legislation to the process of applying for a pavement licence. It takes just ten working days to process a pavement license for al fresco dining. Find out how to apply at www.lichfielddc.gov.uk/pavementlicence

The council’s information officer will be reaching out to businesses to offer them support as they plan to reopen. This is through the Reopening High Streets Safely project, which is funded by the European Regional Development Fund.

As part of this, the council is re-issuing the free #LoveLocal resources pack, which includes posters, social distancing floor stickers and a shop window vinyl.

Councillor Liz Little, Cabinet Member responsible for Economic Development, said:“With the continued fall in coronavirus rates, and as more of us receive the Covid-19 vaccine, it means we are on track to being able to reopen non-essential retail, outdoor hospitality and personal care premises from 12 April.

“We are all looking forward to seeing our high streets come alive again, and we’re reaching out to businesses now to make sure they are ready. If you are a local business and you need our help or advice, please do get in touch with us.”

The council also produces LDC Business News, which is a monthly email newsletter to promote local business news, grants and initiatives. To sign up for it, go to www.lichfielddc.gov.uk/businessenews.

Loss of Royal Mail post box

Many residents are concerned about the removal of the post box from The Square

There will be a petition asking for it to be returned and relocated. This will be available for residents to sign on Tuesday 30th March between 10 and 12 at the Village Hall during the post office session (where you may also post your letters and parcels among many other services).

Residents who are unable to sign it there can sign a copy in Phil Turley's porch. The petition will then be sent to Royal Mail on the 30th.

Please also consider writing to complain to Royal Mail about the loss of this facility - address is Freepost, Royal Mail Customer Services. 

To complain online use RoyalMail.com

Do you run a micro business?

Micro businesses can benefit from free expert advice thanks to unique councils partnership with leading national support body

 

 

Businesses with one to four employees can benefit from 12 months’ free business support to guide them through the pandemic recovery thanks to a partnership between county, borough and district councils which is a UK first.

 

 

Essential advice and guidance on areas such legal and tax issues, employment legislation, health and safety advice, cyber protection and insurance is available through a free 12-month membership package with the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB). Staffordshire County Council is pooling its resources with each district and borough council to offer the membership places.

 

 

It is the first arrangement of its kind nationally for the FSB – where county, district and borough councils have worked together to offer its expert support. The membership offer adds to the package of support available by councils, central government and partner organisations in response to the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.

 

 

Businesses must not be a current FSB member and the memberships will be awarded on a first-come-first-served basis for eligible applicants. Successful applicants will have all the benefits of full membership straight away.

 

 

Tamworth Borough Council and Lichfield District Council launched a joint membership scheme with the FSB last year and this additional county council funding will support its continuation and benefit more businesses.

 

 

Applicants will need to contact their district or borough council in the first instance. Information about this and a wide range of other targeted support programmes can be found by contacting the Stoke-on-Trent and Staffordshire Growth Hub at www.stokestaffsgrowthhub.co.uk

 

 

 

 

 

Councillor Liz Little, Cabinet Member responsible for Economic Development, said: “Support for small businesses will play a vital role in the economic recovery from the pandemic. We have worked closely with the Federation for small Businesses for some time and I am really pleased that this new and unique partnership will allow us to extend the range of advice and support we have available.

 

 

“We know that the past 12 months have been exceptionally difficult and I would encourage any small business to get in touch to see what help we can provide.”

 

 

 

 

 

Staffordshire County Council’s deputy leader and cabinet member for economy and skills Philip White said: “Micro businesses have been greatly impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic though many have shown incredible resilience through this period.

 

 

“By providing free expert advice on a wide range of business-related issues, from marketing to legal and finance, we can remove an additional burden and allow them to concentrate on their operations.

 

 

“This is a pioneering scheme in terms of the FSB working jointly with county, district and borough councils on a single programme. We’re pleased to be able to direct our businesses to industry advice that could make a critical difference as our economy recovers and that as a county, we have led the way with this initiative.

 

 

“Putting the right targeted support in place is most effective when organisations work together – serving our businesses and communities in the best way we can.”

 

 

 

 

 

Karen Woolley, Development Manager for FSB for Staffordshire and the West Midlands, said:

 

 

“FSB is proud to be partnering with Staffordshire County Council and Lichfield District Council on this crucial initiative to get robust, on-the-ground and immediate business support to local small businesses to help them not only survive this crises, but to go on to revive and then thrive.  Both Staffordshire County Council and Lichfield District Council have always had a real passion for identifying businesses in need of support, and this initiative will be pivotal to ensuring this aim is met.  FSB membership provides vital support including 24/7 legal advice and a legal hub containing a wealth of fact sheets and documents which are oven-ready for use, a funding platform, medical care helpline, free debt recovery and cyber protection to name but a few of the benefits which our members are relying on most at this difficult time. We look forward to supporting more businesses across Staffordshire to weather this crisis.” 

 

 

 

 

 

More information on the full suite of benefits offered to FSB members can be found at: www.fsb.org.uk/join-us/membership.html

Schemes to help businesses

Lichfield District Council is offering business start-up grants of £3,000 to local residents who have been made redundant or are out of work, and planning to start a business over the next year.

In total the council has set aside £200,000 from the Additional Restrictions Grant funding it received from the Government, to invest in new local businesses. 

The grants, which will not need to be match-funded, can be spent on: 

·         Business equipment, excluding laptops, mobile phones and tablets

·         Marketing

·         Professional qualifications or training

To be considered for support, prospective applicants must first go on a start-up masterclass workshop provided by Enterprise for Success before applying for a grant. This two-day interactive session will be a useful way to get expert advice to help create a sound business plan.

The four applications rounds are:

·         28 May 2021

·         27 August 2021

·         26 November 2021

·         28 January 2022

The scheme will run until January 2022, or when all the funding has been allocated.

For the criteria and to find out how to apply, visit www.lichfielddc.gov.uk/startupgrants.

 

Lichfield District Start Up Grant Scheme: Offering a one-off grant of £3,000 for residents who have been made redundant or currently economically inactive and seeking to start up a business within the financial year 21/22. - https://www.lichfielddc.gov.uk/business-advice/lichfield-district-start-grant-scheme/1

 

Staffordshire Means Back to Business Support Scheme

Staffordshire County Council and Staffordshire local authorities have partnered up and pooled resources to offer new sources of support to help new businesses to get off the ground, support young people into employment and the costs of upskilling and training new employees.

 

The separate initiatives and how businesses can apply

 

Small Business to Thrive Financial Support: Grants of between £2,000 to £5,000 will be available to cover additional expenditure for essential businesses staying open during the pandemic and those with a plan to recover and get back to growth. - To Thrive Business Grant Scheme - Staffordshire County Council

 

Start Up Scheme and Loan: Loans of between £3k to £5k being offered to people who have first completed the acclaimed Staffordshire Start-up online course to support resilient business start-ups. - Support for start-up businesses - Staffordshire County Council

 

Apprenticeship 500: Provide £5,000 incentive to SMEs in Staffordshire to employ a local 16-24 year old unemployed young person in an apprenticeship. - https://www.staffordshire.gov.uk/Business/Coronavirus-COVID-19-support-for-businesses/Staffordshire-Apprenticeship-500-Grant-Scheme/Staffordshire-Apprenticeship-500-Business-Grant-Scheme.aspx

 

Free Training Top Up: Grants of up to £5,000 to top-up training or up-skilling costs for employees. - Free Training Top Up for Employers - Staffordshire County Council

 

Ignite Top Up Scheme: Additional support to students to take their first steps in their own business. - Students Ignite their entrepreneurship with county start-up programme - Staffordshire County Council Newsroom

 

Free 12 month FSB membership: Businesses with one to four employees can benefit from 12 months’ free business support to guide them through the pandemic recovery. Essential advice and guidance on areas such legal and tax issues, employment legislation, health and safety advice, cyber protection and insurance is available through a free 12-month membership package with the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB).- https://www.lichfielddc.gov.uk/news/article/430/micro-businesses-can-benefit-from-free-expert-advice-thanks-to-unique-partnership-with-leading-national-support-body

Meeting with Elan Homes

The Parish Council has held a site visit with representatives of Elan Homes to establish a means of communication with the developers of the land off The Shrubbery. This was very informative and positive. Residents with any queries about the development work should contact clerk@elfordparish.co.uk who will contact Elan Homes for a response on their behalf.

For notes on the meeting click here

Covid-secure voting

Ahead of the elections in May, residents are being urged to sign up to vote by post or proxy if they would prefer not to vote in person this time round.

 

On Thursday 6 May 2021 residents across Lichfield District will go to the polls to have their say on who is Staffordshire’s next Police, Fire & Crime Commissioner and who represents them at Staffordshire County Council.

 

The Burntwood Neighbourhood Planning referendum, a by-election for the district ward of Summerfield & All Saints, and a by-election for the city ward of Stowe, which were delayed due to Covid-19, will also take place.

 

Lichfield District Council is busy making plans to help people stay safe while casting their vote.

 

 

There are a number of ways to have your say in the May. Voters can cast their vote in a polling station, by post, or by appointing someone they trust to vote on their behalf, which is known as a proxy vote.

 

Diane Tilley, Electoral Registration Officer for Lichfield District, said:“This May’s elections are very important. They’re an opportunity to make your voice heard and have a say on who represents you on issues that directly affect day-to-day life here in Lichfield District.

 

"We’re putting arrangements in place to help you stay safe at the polling station. You can expect many of the measures you’ve become used to in shops and banks over the last year, such as hand sanitiser, floor markings and face coverings. But you also have the option to apply to vote by post or by proxy.”

 

The deadline to apply for a postal vote is 5pm on 20 April, and for a proxy vote the deadline is 5pm on 27 April. To find out how to apply for a postal or proxy vote, visit www.lichfielddc.gov.uk/electionsor email elections@lichfielddc.gov.ukor call 01543 308125.

 

If you have not yet registered to vote at your current address, the deadline is midnight on Monday 19 April. It takes just five minutes to apply online at www.gov.uk/registertovote.

 

March Parish Council meeting

Concerns were again raised by a resident about the effect of water from the development site on Eddies Lane. Cllr Turley confirmed that a meeting would be held between the developers and the Parish Council to discuss the drainage and other matters, and particularly to establish a means of contact so that the Parish Council could raise any concerns with Elan Homes.

Dave Hill presented an evaluation of the Flood Report, which addressed how the Flood Wardens would operate now that an improved pumping station was in use, and proposed how the village could assist with the welfare of Environment Agency staff who attended to monitor the pump often for long hours in difficult conditions.

Brickhouse Lane was still suffering from potholes and this would continue to be reported to Staffordshire Highways.

The Right of Way at The Green had been blocked off, Cllrs would arrange a meeting to discuss this with the householder responsible, the Rights of Way team at Staffordshire County Council would be likely to take action.

The village now had an impressive book swap facility in the former kiosk in Church Road, which had been finished to coincide with the World Book Day event when the children had enjoyed spotting books in windows around the village.

Please see the Minutes on http://elfordparish.co.uk/index.php/parish-council/minutes