The Parish Council’s ‘Strengthening Local Relationships’ meeting that takes place every four months with East Sussex County Council (ESCC) was held in February. We were lucky to have a representative from East Sussex libraries attend to find out about their plans for the future. Libraries are now more like community hubs offering additional services such as the Citizens Advice Bureau, health advice, help with job applications and internet assistance and access.
- 211,000 people are members of the library service in East Sussex
- 94% of library users do not visit a library every day
- Most library usage (85%) is between 10am and 5pm (including visits, transactions, Wi-Fi and People’s Network public computer usage)
- More than twice the number of people visit the library between 10am to 11am than between 9am and 10am on weekdays
- Only 2-4% of issues and renewals in libraries are made after 5pm
- On Saturdays 95% more people visit the library between 10am and 11am than between 9am and 10am
Due to government cuts ESCC has to make savings of between £70 million and £90 million by March 2019. Libraries are undergoing a transformation programme and some difficult decisions need to be made to save £2million in the library service. Changes will result in fewer people in post and they are proposing to reduce opening hours across their 24 libraries by around 25% on average.
As mentioned in the January edition of the Newsletter ESCC want to hear your views on not only changes in opening hours but also your opinion on whether the proposed opening times are acceptable. Although the proposed changes to the Mayfield opening hours are modest – currently 12 hours a week reducing to 11 hours, it might be that you find the days or hours that the library is open inconvenient.
You have until 3 April 2016 to have your say on the proposed changes to library opening hours in East Sussex and how you use, or would like to use, the library service. The consultation is available online at: www.eastsussex.gov.uk/haveyoursay and paper copies are available in all ESCC libraries.
Speed Reduction at Argos Hill
After years of campaigning with residents of Argos Hill a proposal has at last been received from ESCC to reduce the speed limit to from 50mph to 40mph in the narrow curved section of the A267. It is also proposed to reduce the speed limit in Bicycle Arms Lane from 60mph to 40mph. In an ideal world the Parish Council would have liked to see a reduction to 40mph all the way to Trulls Hatch but funding is simply not available for all the road improvements that would be required such as introducing traffic islands. The next stage is a public consultation with public advertisement for three weeks
Queen’s 90th Birthday Celebration
So far only two organisations have contacted the officel to inform that they would like to do some fundraising on Sunday 12th June during the village picnic to celebrate the Queen’s official 90th birthday. You might like to serve refreshments or perhaps run a game for the children to enjoy. You could even boost your society’s numbers at the same time. Please contact the Parish Council office if you would like to take part on 01435 873784 or email email@example.com .
Hearing Resource Centre
The Hearing Bus will be visiting Mayfield on Thursday 3rd March from 13.30-15.30 in the memorial Hall car park, Tunbridge Wells Road, TN20 6PJ:
- Demonstrations of assistive equipment such as amplified loops, amplified phones and smoke alarms
- Advice on all aspects of hearing loss
- Free hearing screening tests
- Hearing aid maintenance and battery service
PCSO Julie Pearce-Martin will be holding her next surgery on Wednesday 16 March 2016 at 11am in the Parish Council office. Please come along to see her if you have any police related concerns that you wish to discuss.
East Sussex Keep Warm and Well Event
If you would like free advice and support to keep your home warm the East Sussex Energy partnership is running an event at Heathfield and Waldron Parish Council Office: 73, High Street, Heathfield, TN21 8HU on Wednesday 2nd March – Friday 4th March from 10am to 2pm. They will be providing information on:
- Reducing your home heating costs
- How to register for emergency temporary heating
- Winter home check services
- Energy bill advice
News: County Council Budget and Plan for 2016/17
East Sussex County Council has approved its budget and Council plan for 2016/17.
Their council tax will go up by 3.99% and includes a 2% levy to help remove some savings from adult social care. £369 million will be spent on council services in 2016/17, with most going to adult social care and children’s services. The council has planned to save £20 million in 2016/17 and £70 million by 2019.
During February, at the recycling centre in the Memorial Hall car park, there was an ironing board, a set of saucepans, some picnic cutlery, a hub cap, some jigsaw puzzles and four large bin bags of clothes/ linen left on the tarmac beside the recycling bins. This is not a general dumping ground for unwanted household items. Please take non-recyclable items to your local household recycling centres. Please also remember that Wealden District Council will collect bin bags of clothes, shoes and linen from the kerbside with your recycling collection. Let’s try to keep the car park looking smart to give a good impression to visitors to Mayfield.
A sweep in time saves 999
East Sussex Fire and Rescue Service is highlighting the dangers of chimney fires this winter.
Make sure your chimney is swept regularly and remember chimneys should be swept according to the type of fuel used:
- Smokeless fuels – at least once a year
- Bitumous coal – at least twice a year
- Wood – quarterly when in use
- Oil – once a year
- Gas – once a year (Any work on gas appliances requires a Gas Safe registered installer/engineer)
Keep chimneys and flues clean and well maintained
Be careful when using open fires to keep warm. Make sure you always use a fire guard to protect against flying sparks from hot embers
- Ensure the fire is extinguished before going to bed or leaving the house
- Ensure good quality fuel is used
- Never interrupt the air supply by blocking air vents or air bricks
Precautions with open fires
- Do not overfill a fire grate in case coals fall out.
- Use a spark guard.
- Do not place a mirror above a fire, people may stand to close.
- Do not position furniture too close to the fire.
How do I know when I have a chimney fire?
- A loud roaring noise, which occurs as massive amounts of air are sucked through the appliance or fireplace opening and used to oxidize the combustible fuels within the system.
- Sparks and flames seen shooting from the chimney top, which can be firework like in appearance.
- A glowing or shimmering appliance outlet or connector.
- Vibrating appliance, outlet or connector.
- Flames visible through any tiny cracks in the outlet or connector.
- Smoke and odours noticeable in adjoining rooms or the loft space.
- The heating up of the chimney breast or flue pipe, in the same room as the appliance and also other rooms that the flue passes through.
What to do in the event of a chimney fire
- Put the spark guard on and call 999.
- REMEMBER – If it is left unattended, a chimney fire can spread into the rest of the house.
- Some people fear that they will be charged for the Fire Service to attend a chimney fire – this is not true
For more information visit our website www.esfrs.org
Easter Opening Times
During the week following Easter, the Parish Council Office will be closed on Wednesday 30 March but will be open for the Planning Committee meeting on Friday 1st April 2016 at 09:30.