Friday, 18 May 2012

Climate Jobs Caravan comes to Lancaster

The National Climate Jobs Caravan will be coming to Lancaster City Centre on 24th May.

It is part of a tour of Britain that is taking in 25 towns and cities across the country to promote zero carbon climate jobs. The ambitious tour, organized by the trade union arm of the Campaign against Climate Change starts in London and Edinburgh on 12th May.

The Lancaster leg is supported by a number of groups in the district including trade unions, Lancaster District Council's Sustainability Partnership, Global Link and Lancaster and Morecambe College.

Throughout the tour there will be meetings, exhibitions and activities.

The tour has the support of a number of trade unions plus national bodies such as the Quakers and the Green Party.

The itinerary in Lancaster is:

- On the 22nd and 23rd May at 7.30pm the Dukes Gallery will be showing the Million Green Jobs film made for the tour, plus shorts. Shaun Dey, the filmmaker will be leading a discussion after the showing on Wednesday.

- On 24th May the Climate Caravan with exhibitions and stalls promoting Green Jobs will be in Lancaster City Centre between 10.30am and 4.30pm.

Also on the 24th a Green Job Fair will be taking place between 12-4pm at the Hexagon Theatre at Lancaster and Morecambe College. (If you are a business leading the way in the move to Zero Carbon Jobs and would like to take part then please contact Serena at Global Link on 01524 840591)

On the evening of the 24th, there will be a public forum at The Storey CIC from 7.30pm. The main speaker will be Martin Empson from the national Campaign Against Climate Change and contributions from the floor will be welcome. Admission is free to all events.

The message of the tour is simple: the creation of climate jobs can help solve both the economic and climate crisis. It is promoting the idea of investment in areas like public transport, home insulation, building, design and renewable energy such as the eco-housing development and hydro project in Halton. One million climate jobs could be created and are vital to transforming our infrastructure and cutting CO2 emissions by 80%.

The tour will be calling for the government to set up a National Climate Service (NCS) to invest in climate jobs. It will also provide an opportunity for the council to demonstrate its commitment to its own corporate strategy which states that “Environmental Sustainability is treated as a theme that underpins all Corporate Priorities to ensure that the Council minimises its use of energy, promotes sustainable energy generation, uses local businesses and resources where possible, has high environmental standards and promotes the use of green jobs in the district.”

Suzanne Jeffery, Chair of the Campaign against Climate Change Trade Union Group, said, “Investing in climate jobs is a win-win situation. It helps solve both the economic and environmental crises.

"With 2.5 million people unemployed and climate change threatening the future of our planet, we are dismayed that the government is refusing to seriously invest in climate jobs.”

Serena Mansfield from Global Link who is helping to organize the Green Jobs Fair said 'We need a change of thinking and imagination in the way we work. These events will both celebrate what is already happening and provide a strong example of what needs to be done."



Thursday, 17 May 2012

Free vacancy adverts offered by University of Cumbria job shop

The University of Cumbria is inviting local employers in Cumbria and North Lancashire to post vacancies for students and graduates on its online job shop absolutely free of charge.

After completing a simple onsite registration system, employers can provide details of their vacancies online or copy and paste them from existing job adverts. They also have the option of asking for the vacancies to be forwarded to job shops of other universities in the North West.

The system can handle all kinds of vacancies subject to a brief check for suitability and legality, whether they are graduate traineeships, work experience or voluntary opportunities, or part-time jobs for current students looking to finance their time at university. Employers can see how many potential applicants have viewed their vacancy details and regular vacancy alerts are automatically sent out to applicants who have indicated interest in specific types of work.

“Many employers in the area will be unaware of the University of Cumbria job shop facility, as this is the first time we’ve publicised it extensively," explains Colin Taylor, senior careers adviser at the university says. It's a great opportunity for local employers to recruit locally as the vast majority of students and graduates registered on the system are based in the region and not all of them have the desire or the opportunity to relocate to the big cities.”

There are currently 643 students and graduates registered with the University of Cumbria job shop chasing a total of 106 vacancies, although most of those jobs are in other parts of the country.

• Employers wishing to register a vacancy can do so at http://employer.cumbria.prospects.ac.uk or contact Colin Taylor for more information on 01228 6163213.

Sainsbury's seeks new Local Charity to support



Local supermarket Sainsbury’s Local Charity Partner Scheme is back for its fourth year and both Sainsbury’s in Morecambe and Lancaster are on the lookout for a new Local Charity Partner who they can provide help and support to from 20th June 2012.

Customers can vote in-store for their favourite local charity between 9th and 23rd May. The winning charity will be announced in June and will receive a year’s worth of fundraising and support from the store’s colleagues and customers

Sainsbury’s Morecambe is asking customers and colleagues to put forward the names of charities based in Morecambe that are important to them. To vote, customers simply fill out a form and pop it into the store’s Local Charity Partner voting box, situated at the front of the store.

A shortlist of nominations will be drawn up after the closing date and the store’s colleagues will then invite the three charities that they feel best fit the needs of the community into store to talk about how Sainsbury’s can support them. The store will then choose a charity to partner with for the next 12 months.

Last year, the Morecambe store’s Local Charity Partner was Morecambe Road School while Lancaster's was St. John's Hospice. During a year’s worth of fundraising, Morecambe colleagues managed to raise over £3000 for the school. Following the partnership, the store will continue to provide support to the charity, including instore collections and bag packing.

Last year, Sainsbury’s stores and their customers helped more than 1000 charities and organisations across the UK through fundraising and volunteering and gave more than £1.5million of support to local communities.

“Our last charity partnership with Morecambe Road School proved a great success and we’re looking forward to continuing to support them," said Sainsbury’s Morecambe Store Manager Steve Spencer. "Our customers now have a fantastic opportunity to help us support another local charity which is close to many people’s hearts, so we hope they can help us in our search for your Local Charity Partner for 2012/2013".

New Refuse and Recycling Calendars

Lancaster City Council has begun delivering new refuse and recycling calendars to households throughout May and June.

For some residents the calendars include important changes to which bin is collected on which week, so it is wise to keep hold of your new calendar as these changes may affect you.

Calendars are also available to view online at www.lancaster.gov.uk/findmynearest

Don’t forget that all plastic bottles and all glass bottles, jars, and containers can be recycled.

To find out what you can put in your recycling boxes visit www.lancaster.gov.uk/bins

Remember to call Bulky Matters if you have any larger items you no longer need including furniture, fridges and other domestic appliances, TVs and much more.

For a small fee your items will be collected from inside your home at a time to suit you. All items collected are either re-used or recycled, providing training opportunities and helping local disadvantaged people furnish their homes.

To book a collection call Customer Services on 01524 582491.

Appeal after muggers rob man at knife point in Lancaster

Police are appealing for witnesses following a robbery near Sainsbury's, Lancaster, last month.

The incident took place on the evening of Wednesday 4th April on the cycle track at the back of Sainsbury’s.

The victim, a 35-year-old local man, was approached by three men, one of whom asked him for some change. Whilst this was happening, another man grabbed him and held a knife to his throat. His pockets were searched and a small amount of cash was stolen.

The first man is described as white, aged in his early 30’s and is around 5’6” to 5’8”. He was wearing a blue tracksuit with red stripe up the leg.

The second man is described as black and aged in his early 30’s with stocky build, 5’8” tall, big boned with shoulder length dredlocks wearing jeans and a grey fleece with black nike air trainers. He had a Manchester accent and a “cross on ring style” earring in his right ear.

The third man is described as black in his early 30’s with short straight bobbed hair, thin build, clean shaven with a “baby face” wearing a tracksuit.

PC Tris Hardwick from Lancaster Police said, “I would appeal to anyone who was in the area at the time and witnessed what happened to come forward and contact the police.”

Anyone with information is asked to call Lancaster police on 101.



Wednesday, 16 May 2012

Olympic torch's arrival sparks local countdown

The Olympic Torch will arrive in the UK on Friday 18th May – sparking the countdown to when it will travel through the Lancaster district.

Five towns and villages in the district are on the official route of the Torch as it makes its 70 day journey around the UK to the Olympic Park in London.

The local leg will mark the half way point – day 35 – and take place on Friday 22nd June.

Plans are in place to give the Torch a warm welcome as it makes its way from Carnforth all the way to Lancaster, with more than 10,000 school children confirmed as taking part.

Specially designated school viewing areas have been set aside so that the children and their teachers provide colour, atmosphere and support for all the Torch Bearers through our district during this once in a lifetime event.

The party atmosphere will be complemented by entertainment at various points along the routes – details of which will be confirmed nearer the time.

Councilor Ron Sands, Cabinet member with responsibility for children and young people, said: “The build up to London 2012 and its legacy has a focus on young people.

“With that in mind, the city council has been working closely with schools to provide safe designated viewing areas along the Torch Relay route to give the Olympic Torch a warm welcome.

“Local people can also plan now where they can watch the Torch – we’re blessed in that it will be travelling nearly all the way from Carnforth through to Scotforth on foot, so there will be plenty of opportunity for everyone to line the streets and cheer on the inspirational torchbearers.”

A map of the route is available at www.lancaster.gov.uk/london2012, along with traffic and travel advice on how to prepare for the day.

Approximate times for the Torch’s journey through the Lancaster district’s five communities are:

- Carnforth – 9.47am to 9.59am
- Bolton-le-Sands – 10.03am to 10.17am
- Hest Bank – 10.20am to 10.33am
- Morecambe – 10.36am to 12.02pm
- Lancaster (Scale Hall to Our Lady’s) – 12.03pm to 12.29pm
- Lancaster (Our Lady’s to Scotforth) – 1.32pm to 2.08pm

Local people are also being invited to sign up to be part of the ‘Local Leader’ programme and celebrate the arrival of the Torch.  More information is available at www.london2012.com/localleaders

The Torch Relay will be followed by the Velocity Festival – a celebration of sport in the Lancaster district.

The festival will feature a cycle race in Lancaster city centre on the Friday evening (June 22) before moving to Morecambe for a weekend of watersports including sailing, kitesurfing, jet skis and kayaking.  There will also be music and a food fair to complement the sporting activities.

• For more information on the Velocity Festival and a schedule of events visit www.lancaster.gov.uk/velocity

Tuesday, 15 May 2012

Lancaster City Council establishes "Champion for Young People" role

Councillors at Monday’s full Lancaster City Council meeting approved a motion to establish a new position of "Champion for Young People" to reflect its commitment to engaging with children and young people in the district.

The Champion is expected to promote and raise the issues relating to young people with other councillors and the public.

Councillor Paul Aitchison, the newly appointed Champion, said: “It’s great to see the Council show support for young people in our communities who are both vibrant and diverse, and have much to offer to the district.

“Personally, I'm delighted and honoured to have been appointed and I aim to ensure that their issues and concerns do not go unheard, and to champion their many skills and talents.”

Coun Aitchison also highlighted how the new role reflects the aims of the Council’s Corporate Plan, also passed Monday evening, to develop a Children and Young People’s Plan for the district.

The role of the Champion for Young People allows the chosen councillor to give their full attention to the needs of young people and thereby complementing the responsibilities of the relevant Cabinet portfolio holder.

A key date for Coun Aitchison’s diary will be the annual Special Council, to be held on 17th October 2012, when young people from secondary schools across the district are invited to engage in local politics.

At the event, students will be greeted with a round of political speed dating before engaging in a pupil power game. "

Hammer-wielding thieves sought by police





(Updated 16/5/12 with evofit): A robbery in Stanhope Venue, Morecambe last week has prompted a police appeal after the intruders threatened a resdent with a hammer.

At approximately 10.00pm last Wednesday night (9th May), two men wearing full face balaclavas and dark clothing forced their way into a house on Stanhope Avenue, threatening the occupant with a hammer.

The woman, who was in the house on her own, was forced into the lounge area by one of the men while the other removed the household safe from the wall.

“I would appeal to anyone with any information to come forward and contact police," asked Detective Sergeant Mark Stephens of Lancaster CID.

"Specifically, I would urge anyone who may have seen any suspicious activity in the area either immediately before or after the robbery to contact us.

“Fortunately, the lady was not hurt although she has been left understandably shaken following what can only be described as a terrifying ordeal so if anyone does have any information then I would urge them to contact the police.”

Quay warehouse fire: arson suspected

A fire which broke out in a disused warehouse in Lancaster is believed to have been started deliberately.

Around 60 firefighters fought to tackle the fire at the five-storey facility on St George's Quay on 11th May, which affected the third and fourth floors of the building.

The Lancaster Guardian reports Initial investigations from the fire service revealed that arsonists may be behind the cause of the incident.

Nearby roads in the area were closed as officers battled the flames, while the Quay remained closed to traffic over the weekend.