SSDC update: Community grant opportunities for your environmental projects
South Somerset District Council has a long tradition of supporting communities, local voluntary groups and the wider community sector. One of the ways this is enabled is through the Community Grants programme for projects such as community transport, improving recreational facilities, community halls and many more schemes that enhance the lives of the local community.
SSDC have now extended the Community Grants scheme to support local environment initiatives. Last year the Council acknowledged the climate emergency and are now committed to becoming carbon neutral by 2030. This includes supporting environmental progression for communities across the district to develop existing, and kick start new exciting environmental projects.
This new extension to the existing community grants scheme will place environmental progression at its core, offering funding for communities to inspire environmental projects across South Somerset’s local landscape. We’ve seen significant changes in our communities over the past three months and this is an excellent opportunity to ensure the changes are positive with novel projects championing sustainability, carbon neutrality and biodiversity.
The fund will cover up to 50% of the project costs and you will need support from your Parish Council. Applications in the range of £100 to £1,000 will be reviewed by SSDC and your Ward Member, any applications for more than £1,000 are decided by your SSDC Area Committee with a maximum grant of £12,500. Applications can be made at any time throughout the year, but revenue funding is limited so do apply in good time, especially if you have seasonal deadlines to meet.
With the range of funding available, all forms of projects can benefit, from smaller funding projects such as a community orchard, building a bat hotel, or even paying for a regular meeting space where your group can meet to discuss and implement your projects. Larger projects could be for schemes such as a local electric vehicle charging points, energy efficiency for your community hall, wild-flower meadow creation or even buying an acre of land. This new funding will give your community the opportunity to take a great eco idea and see it through to fruition.
Portfolio Holder for Health and Wellbeing Cllr Mike Best said “the SSDC community grants programme has supported many local projects over the years and invests in schemes that are developed by, and for, all our communities. We have always considered applications for environmental focused projects, but now more than ever feel they should be encouraged. This will also serve as a reminder to all potential applicants that our community fund is here to support a huge variety of community projects to enhance where we live”
Portfolio Holder for the Environment Cllr Sarah Dyke said “Lockdown has been a challenging time for everyone and yet in some spaces the environment has been given the opportunity to flourish. Air quality has improved and areas of grass left to grow through the spring have created new habitats for wildlife and pollinators. By re-launching our community grants scheme with an enhanced environmental component we hope to capture this momentum and support our communities to deliver more positive environmental outcomes post Covid-19 and build a better environment in South Somerset for the future”.
We’re really looking forward to hearing about your great community eco ideas! If you would like to speak to someone about our grants programme you can email [email protected]
You can also visit our website and find additional information on how to apply:https://www.southsomerset.gov.uk/your-council/your-council-plan-and-strategies/communities/grants-and-other-support-for-the-voluntary-and-community-sector/
also available here.
There is also a Castle Cary and District bereavement support group on Facebook. This is a closed group for people in the area around Castle Cary, Somerset who are dealing with bereavement.
Thank you to everyone involved. Do walk over to the Fairfield and look at our new “mini-meadow” near St Andrew’s Church. Although like everywhere else it is waiting for rain, the cornflowers and poppies are managing (without the help of any watering) to produce a spectacular display, especially first thing in the morning.
29 May 2020
Recycling centres: Back to summer opening next week
Somerset Waste Partnership’s recycling centres will revert to their usual summer opening hours from Monday 1 June.
As well as the current temporary hours, the odds and even number plate access system will also come to an end from Monday. All other restrictions remain in place as SWP continues the move towards business as usual following Coronavirus closures.
Eleven of the 16 sites reopened on 11 May, and the remaining five on Tuesday (26 May), though materials and access remain restricted.
Please see https://www.somersetwaste.gov.uk/recycling/centres/ from Monday morning for all sites’ opening hours – note that for Taunton, Yeovil and Frome it means a return to seven days a week opening.
SWP is continuing its plea for people to only come if it is really necessary and to take full advantage of the weekly kerbside recycling collections, which have continued throughout the crisis.
Long queues are expected at the sites, especially first thing in the morning, as the number of unloading bays has been reduced to allow social distancing. Queue cams are viewable for Bridgwater, Chard, Highbridge, Minehead, Somerton, Street, Taunton and Yeovil. Please check before you leave.
Odd and even number plate access continue until Sunday 31 May:
Odd numbers on Saturday (for example 01, 19 etc)
Even numbers on Sunday (for example 02, 18 etc)
A maximum of two people per household will be permitted, gloves must be worn while outside your vehicle and strict social distancing maintained. Trailers and 3.5 tonne vans are only allowed access between 4pm and 6pm on weekdays.
Only materials accepted (and what happens to them):
Rubbish – material you would usually put in your black rubbish bin, excess black bags not taken by kerbside collections, and bulky items like furniture (landfilled in Somerset, soon to be sent to an Avonmouth energy-from-waste plant)
Green waste – garden waste such as grass cuttings, leaves, hedge trimmings (composted in Somerset)
Large household electrical items – white goods, cookers TVs etc (recycled in UK)
Household hazardous waste, such as solvents, garden chemicals, paint thinners and antifreeze (treated and disposed of in UK)
Waste cooking oil and engine old, in disposable containers of up to five litres (recycled in UK)
Scrap metal (recycled in UK)
Any items you would usually pay to have disposed of will not be accepted – including tyres, gas bottles, soil and hardcore, vehicle parts, commercial waste, plasterboard and asbestos.
Access to the normal recycling banks is not possible. So, unless you really need to, please do not bring cardboard, food and drink cans, paper, food waste, plastic bottles, glass bottles and jars. These can be recycled using the continuing weekly recycle collections: https://www.somersetwaste.gov.uk/recycling-collections/
If you want to recycle waste wood, plastic pots tubs and trays, TetraPaks and small electricals, please hold on to them until the sites return to normal.
Mickey Green, SWP Managing Director, said: “This is another step towards business as usual. The restrictions are there to keep everyone safe, but they do reduce capacity so please do only come if you really need to. It’s not business as usual and there’s every chance you will have a lengthy wait.”
For more information about how to reduce and reuse your waste, visit www.somersetwaste.gov.uk
For the latest information about services and any disruption visit www.somersetwaste.gov.uk/coronavirus and follow @somersetwaste on Twitter and Facebook.
On-street parking patrols are due to restart in Somerset on Monday (1 June) following the easing of coronavirus restrictions.
With more pupils returning to schools and some businesses starting to reopen, Somerset County Council’s civil enforcement officers will return to help keep roads clear and traffic moving.
At first, they will serve penalty notices on vehicles parked on double yellow lines, in places with loading restrictions, bus stops and dropped kerbs in public areas – all locations where no vehicles should be parked.
For the first seven days, penalties will not be served where parking is permitted, such as resident bays, pay and display locations, limited waiting bays and single yellow lines (at times). The vehicle may have been left correctly and the driver may have, for example, self-isolated. A warning letter will be left on these vehicles asking that it is immediately removed to avoid receiving penalties in future.
Councillor John Woodman, Cabinet member for highways and transport at Somerset County Council, said: “During the lockdown, most parking enforcement officers have been redeployed to other roles supporting the community, such as delivering PPE or managing queuing traffic at the reopened household waste recycling centres or testing centres.
“Their efforts are greatly appreciated, and I would like to thank them as they begin to resume their normal duties.”
Requests for residents’ paper permits have been on hold since the start of the UK lockdown but preparations are now being made to issue them. The expiry date will be extended to make sure people receive a full 12-month period. All annual virtual resident permits are being extended for two months to cover the period of suspension and ensure everyone receives a full 12 months’ value.
Please check with your district council for information on car parks in your local area.