Ultrafast Broadband Heading Our Way - well most of us!

Gigaclear announces build schedule for Trinity and surrounds….

Readers may remember my update on our broadband service early in 2017, when I reported that BT had not been successful in the Phase 2 Connecting Devon and Somerset (CDS) tenders.

Our tender parcel, No 5 Exmouth and Coast, has been awarded to Gigaclear to provide a full ‘Fibre to the Premises’ (FTTP) service, independent of the old BT network, offering some of the fastest broadband services available around the globe. There was scepticism, when I predicted those omitted from the initial Phase 1 BT/CDS could ultimately end up with a much better service, yet that seems set to happen…

The orange areas in the map shows Gigaclear delivery packages. These exclude the main population concentrations of Seaton, Axminster (and Lyme Regis), upgraded by BT in Phase 1.

Gigaclear and CDS have now agreed and contracted delivery at premises level. Four deployment packages affect us in Trinity ward, no’s 41,43,56 and 60 as marked.

The table below shows the ‘Community Name’ used and number used to identify each package, together with the planned start date of the build and expected completion dates.

We should see action locally early in the programme, with work scheduled to start in Uplyme and Raymonds Hill in Quarter 2, 2018 and completed by the end of September 2018, but sadly not scheduled until Quarter 3 2019 in Combpyne-Rousdon and Whitford.

Ref        Community Name       Build Start        Build Complete
41          Raymonds Hill              Q2 2018             Q3 2018
43          Rousdon                      Q3 2019             Q1 2020
56          Uplyme                       Q2 2018             Q3 2018
60          Whitford                      Q3 2019             Q1 2020

How do I know if I am included?...

All individual properties included in the programme can get a progress report online at https://www.gigaclear.com/postcode-checker/connectingdevonandsomerset

If your property is included, you will then be able to watch as works move toward you, right up to the point of ‘switch on’

What if I’m not included?...

There are a number of reasons why this might be the case for areas east of Axmouth and at the extreme South East, bordering Dorset.
It may be that your line has already been upgraded within Phase 1 work completed by BT to superfast speeds, that information used by CDS is not correct, or simply that Phase 2 does not deliver 100% FTF coverage (yet!).

I have spoken with CDS and understand it is likely further funding will be available which could be used to further extend the network. I suggest that you use the postcode checker above to register your interest. It would also be helpful if you could let me have a copy of your postcode, as there are other possible options to help co-ordinate further extension the network within Trinity toward 100%.

A cautionary note… *** Updated from that printed in Parish Magazine***

Gigaclear has contracted Carillion to complete the CDS deployment in the South West. At the time of writing Carillion, a holder of many major government contracts, is in serious trouble. Hope that this will not ultimately affect the works here, but will update everyone should this situation develop.

***Update***

Since I wrote the original article, as featured in the current edition of Uplyme Parish Magazine, Carillion has of course sadly failed.

However, Matthew Hare, CEO of Gigaclear was swift to deliver a reassuring statement via ISPPreview.co.uk;

“It is very sad news that Carillion has gone into compulsory liquidation. Whilst this may have a minor impact on delivery schedules, Carillion telent is a separate business holding its own funds and bank accounts. Therefore, the contract with Gigaclear to deliver the build for full fibre broadband to the South West region still stands.

We are committed to delivering ultrafast broadband to Devon and Somerset, and already work with alternative partners in the area should the need to relook at capacity and resource arise. We will ensure any disruption to both our potential customers and suppliers is minimised. Our priority remains to connect this area to future proofed, full fibre broadband.”

So look forward works near us soon!

Full details on all stories and the latest news on my website www.trinitymatters.co.uk

Cllr Ian Thomas – Trinity Ward, East Devon District Council
Inform - Consult – Participate
Mobile: 07884 494474
email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Facebook : www.facebook.com/CouncillorIanThomas
Twitter : @CllrIanThomas

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Uplyme Parish Magazine - November article

East Devon forms private sector housing company…

Innovative ways needed to fund services, as central government support declines….

East Devon District Council has set up a Local Housing Company, totally owned by the Council, to
invest in housing for the general market (outside the scope of ‘traditional’ council housing). The
company should generate funds to supplement Council funding, essential to maintenance of the
services we all value in times of local authority austerity.

Our Local Housing Company is an opportunity for East Devon District Council to build on the
expertise the council has managing and maintaining a large stock of homes for council tenants, and
play a greater role in the local housing market through the addition of homes for the private rental
market.

A recommendation is to be made to Full Council to approve an initial loan facility of £2m, with a
further investment of £528k to cover the initial cash shortfall in the Business Plan of the new
company.

This does NOT mean that the Council is reducing its work on the provision of council housing. This
will continue apace and, despite the problems generated by central government policies, I’m
confident that East Devon will continue to add further council house to provide safe, secure homes
for those in housing need.

Refuse and Recycling Update...

The East Devon waste and recycling contract continues to keep our recycling rates amongst the
highest in the country. The current recycling rate is 57%, an increase of 15% over the old collection
system, significantly greater than any of the plan scenarios considered.

Despite this, feedback I have received is universally that the three-week landfill collection service,
coupled with enhanced recycling at the kerbside, has not produced the predicted ‘catastrophe’ again
dramatically circulating in the press, as other authorities consider following our lead.

Increased recycling volumes, greater than expected, have placed inevitable strain on SUEZ, our
supplier. Overall staff turnover has been high in the last year, meaning that some areas have
experienced irregular collections, in part due to staff not being familiar with their new routes.

In cab technology now means that each vehicle can be tracked, with crews updated en route with
collection information and further details of assisted collection needed by some residents.

New Materials Recovery Facility (recycling plant to the rest of us!) to open Jan2018...

The new facility at Greendale, to the east of Exeter, where much of our recycling is processed, is
due to open in Jan 2018.

But what about black plastics?...

You may be aware that it is not yet possible to guarantee that ‘black plastics’ will be recycled. Whilst
‘black plastics’ are not a serious contaminant, they reduce the value of plastics for recycling, by
being worth less to processors.

The situation is subject to review, but in the interim black plastics should still be put into our
recycling bags. EDDC and SUEZ are monitoring developments in the recycling market, hopeful that
a more attractive way of processing ‘black plastics’ becomes available.

East Devon District Council Snapshots…

‘Affordable’ Houses…

• 45 affordable homes were delivered in Q1 2017. A further 159 are proposed. EDDC, through
right to buy receipts, purchased 10 houses with 16 more due to complete Q2 and Q3.

EDDC Countryside Team…

• A busy Summer with over 1000 people attending local events. Rockpool rambles, bug hunts,
outdoor yoga and canoe safaris were particularly popular.

Winter programme includes reindeer trail at Seaton Wetlands and wreath making in Seaton
and Cranbrook.

Blackdown House…

• The new EDDC Office Building, at Heathpark in Honiton, is progressing on schedule. Ground
work means that the footprint of the building can now be seen. A time-lapse camera is now
recording progress with handover from the Contractor sue 15th October 2018.

Full details on all stories and the latest news on my website www.trinitymatters.co.uk

Cllr Ian Thomas – Trinity Ward, East Devon District Council
Inform - Consult – Participate
Mobile: 07884 494474
email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Facebook : www.facebook.com/CouncillorIanThomas
Twitter : @CllrIanThomas

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Uplyme Parish Magazine - October 2017 article

East Devon considering garden waste collection ...

Council investigates feasibility of a new service with recycling partners, SUEZ UK….

East Devon District Council is exploring a fortnightly district-wide chargeable garden waste collection service which would, if introduced, include the Trinity Ward Parishes of Uplyme, Combpyne-Rousdon and Axmouth.

Over the last six months the council has introduced a new improved recycling service to more than 68,000 households across the district and during this period, there has been considerable pressure from residents asking the council to provide a reliable garden waste collection service too.

Over the next few months, we will be investigating the feasibility of providing a garden waste collection service for a small annual fee. The council will work with our partners SUEZ, who operate the current recycling and waste contractors, to develop a detailed business case. Many councils across the country successfully operate a chargeable collection service such as this and East Devon is keen to continue to improve and modernise our recycling and waste service by introducing this new initiative.

The move comes as the council’s recycling and waste partnership board agreed last month not to renew an expired contract with previous garden waste collection operators Otter Rotters Ltd who are a community enterprise group. The ‘Otter Rotters’ service was not available to us in Uplyme, Combpyne-Rousdon or Axmouth, as their operation was restricted to 9,000 households in Honiton, Ottery, and villages to the West End of East Devon. There has been no formal agreement between the council and Otter Rotters Ltd since April 2016 and Otter Rotters Ltd confirmed to the council’s partnership board that it dissolved in February this year and was not currently operating.

The Council is now looking to the future and several residents have indicated the wish to have a regular and reliable garden waste collection service. If we are able to deliver this service in an economically viable manner, then I hope it will also help reduce disturbance caused in the village centre during the summer, as residents burn garden waste.

If introduced, it will be important that the service is sustainable in the long term, covers its costs without being subsidised by the council tax payer, and operates across all areas of East Devon.

I will keep you informed on progress over the Winter…

Uplyme Neighbourhood Plan Examiners Report…

Examiners recommendations endorsed…..

At our September Cabinet Meeting, we thanked the Uplyme Neighbourhood Plan Group for all their hard work and our East Devon District Council Officers for the support they had given the Group.

Legislation associated with the Neighbourhood Plan requires East Devon District Council to produce a ‘Decision Notice’ at this stage in the process. We therefore resolved that;

1. The examiners recommendations on the plan be endorsed.
2. That a ‘referendum version’ of the Neighbourhood Plan (incorporating the examiners modifications) should proceed to a referendum and a decision notice to this effect be published.
3. That the Uplyme Neighbourhood Plan Group be congratulated on their hard work.

What happens next?...

A referendum vote will now be held in Uplyme on Thursday 26th October. I understand that the Neighbourhood Plan Group intends to hold a further exhibition of the ‘Referendum’ Version of the plan in the village hall in advance of ‘referendum day’ to allow us all to take a final look.

What will a ‘made’ Neighbourhood Plan mean to us?...

A Neighbourhood Plan, when supported by a simple majority in referendum, will be promptly ‘made’ by EDDC at our Cabinet Meeting.
Once ‘made’, our Neighbourhood Plan will be used in the determination of planning applications in the Neighbourhood Plan Area (which, in our case, coincides with the Uplyme Parish boundary). The Parish Council will also receive 25% of Community Infrastructure Levies and, whilst it cannot change existing ‘Section 106’ funding agreements on development, the Neighbourhood Plan can be used in future agreements.

When will the plan next be reviewed?...

Neighbourhood Plans are normally reviewed within their lifespan, typically 5-10 yearly, or in line with a Local Plan Review, to ensure that policies remain relevant.

Full details on all stories and the latest news on my website www.trinitymatters.co.uk

Cllr Ian Thomas – Trinity Ward, East Devon District Council
Inform - Consult – Participate
Mobile: 07884 494474
email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Facebook : www.facebook.com/CouncillorIanThomas
Twitter : @CllrIanThomas

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