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IS YOUR VEHICLE ATTRACTING THIEVES? THE POLICE SUGGEST FOLLOWING THESE TEN SIMPLE RULES TO PROTECT YOU CAR:

1. Lock your vehicle - Locking your vehicle, even when filling up or parked on your drive, greatly reduces the possibility of it being targeted by an opportunist thief. Even if you have locked your vehicle, check you haven't left any windows or the sunroof open. Remove all valuables, especially those that can be seen from outside the vehicle. It is actually illegal to leave your vehicle running unattended while you de-ice it or warm it up in cold weather. If someone takes it while it's left like this, your insurer won't pay out because you won't be covered.

2. Keep the keys safe - Vehicles today are by and large more difficult to steal than ever, unless the thief can access your key or fob to clone them. Keep your keys safe, out of view when at home, and away from your front door. It's not uncommon for car keys to be stolen from inside your home by thieves fishing for them with a stick and hook through the letterbox. When not in use, keep your electronic car key in a security pouch to prevent it being scanned by thieves to open and steal your car nearby.

3. Be aware of carjackers - The fact that you're in the car isn't always a deterrent to someone trying to steal it. In traffic, drive with the doors locked and when queuing leave enough space in front of your vehicle to enable you to get out of a tight spot. If your vehicle is bumped from behind, wait to pull over – somewhere safe and preferably where there are people. After all, you don't know the person who has collided with you; they could well be hijackers. If you're at all suspicious, consider calling the police. If someone threatens you, it's better to hand over the keys to the vehicle than become a victim of assault. Then call 999 as soon as possible, and ask for the police. If your car is stolen, some modern vehicle alarm and tracker systems have the facility to isolate or shut down fuel systems, bringing the vehicle to a halt and leaving the thief high and dry.

4. Park responsibly - It's always advisable to avoid parking in dark and secluded areas. It's worth an extra five or ten-minute walk if it means your vehicle is left in a well-lit and busier street. And if possible, always try to park in illuminated and staffed car parks or those with a Park Mark safer parking award. To find one, simply check out Park Mark.

5. Watch for illegal tow trucks - Thieves often attempt to lift vehicles from the street, literally. So, if you see a tow away crew acting suspiciously – especially if their vehicle isn't branded or if they're not in uniform – then please report it immediately. As with every report of suspicious behaviour made in good faith, we'll never blame anyone for calling us if it proves unfounded. Car parks with height-restricted entrances help prevent illegal tow trucks and removal vehicles. And fitting a Thatcham rated category 1 or 2 alarm system with tracking, immobilisation, anti-grab and movement sensors can help protect and trace your vehicle.

6. Fit good in-car security locks - Bear in mind that built-in steering locks aren't necessarily thief-proof. Many can be forced and broken. Fitting a Sold Secure steering wheel, gear lever or clutch pedal security device can give your vehicle added protection.

7. Double-check electronic locking - Electronic devices can be used to jam the electronic signal from your key fob to lock your vehicle. Always manually check your vehicle has locked before walking away. If unsure, lock it manually, then scan the immediate area for anyone hanging around. If a potential thief who's watching feels they've been spotted, they'll probably move off.

8. Before you buy, check for cloning - Changing the identity of a vehicle, known as vehicle cloning, can be as simple as adding stolen number plates. When buying a vehicle, always check the DVLA V5 document and make sure the Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) on the vehicle is the same as on the document. Make sure you check more than one of the VINs as well as the engine numbers on the vehicle. Check a used vehicle you're buying.

9. Secure your port - Many modern vehicles are fitted with engine management diagnostic ports, which can be accessed without the thief needing to open the vehicle doors, boot or bonnet, but which can unlock and start your vehicle. If your vehicle has this type of port, consider fitting a lockable cover.

10. Be aware of test drive thieves - Test drive thefts are where a thief answers an advert for a vehicle sale pretending to be a genuine buyer. When they meet the vendor they ask for a test drive and never return with the vehicle. Take steps to avoid this by going with the prospective buyer on any test drive and don't leave anyone alone with the vehicle and its keys. Ask any potential buyer for contact details and to see their driving licence and insurance. Never leave the vehicle keys in the ignition – keep hold of them.

THE PLAYGROUND - UPDATE ADDED 17/07/2020

We are pleased to announce that the play area will re-open on Monday 20th July. We ask that you kindly read the following information before visiting the playground:

1. Please respect and maintain social distancing at all times, ideally keep at least 2 metres apart, and certainly no closer than 1 metre . If the play area is busy, please come back later or wait. We are unable to monitor the use of the playground but strongly recommend the following to ensure social distancing:

a. Only one adult per child in the toddlers' area.

b. Max of 3 children and 3 adults in toddler area at a time.

c. Birds nest swing - 1 person max at a time (unless the same family group)d. All other equipment - max of two users at a time

2. The play area has been checked to ensure the equipment, that has been out of use for several months, appears to be in good working order. We would however point out that the external annual inspection is not due to be completed until August 2020. Please notify the clerk at greatalne.parishcouncil@googlemail.com if you notice any issues with the play equipment.

3. The Parish Council does not have the resources to undertake cleaning of this equipment on a regular basis and ask that parents wipe down equipment before and after use.

4. Please use hand sanitizer for yourself and your child throughout your visit and ensure hands are washed thoroughly when you get home.

5. Both swing sets will be one swing only to maintain social distancing. Please do not untie the other swing.

6. Permanent signs have been ordered and should be fitted in time for Monday.These precautions are designed to minimise risk to playground users and other village residents. If it is reported that these guidelines are not being followed, and therefore users' safety is being put at risk, the Parish Council will be forced to consider closing the playground again.

Thank you to those of you who have been patient whilst we have worked through the guidance to ensure it is as safe as possible to re-open. We hope the children will enjoy being back in the lovely play area.

INTEGRATED CARE RECORD - GET INVOLVED

The health and social care organisations within Coventry and Warwickshire have sent the following message.

"We would really like to hear your thoughts on the new Coventry and Warwickshire Integrated Care Record (ICR) which is due to go live in Autumn 2020.

The Integrated Care Record (ICR) is a consolidated electronic record of a person's care. It takes information directly from existing systems used by health and social care organisations and presents it in a structured, easy to read format for health and care professionals.The ICR will provide all health and care professionals directly involved in the care of a patient/service user with a more joined up view of a patient's care and treatment across all care settings.

The ICR has been developed in response to the feedback from many of you over a number of years, telling us that you only want to tell your story and share information once when receiving care from any health or social care organisation across Coventry and Warwickshire. Please follow the link below to find out more about the Coventry and Warwickshire ICR and what this means for you. https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/IntegratedCareRecord.

After you have read the background to the ICR there is a short survey for you to fill in. The purpose of the survey is to make you aware of the Coventry and Warwickshire Integrated Care Record (ICR) and give you the opportunity to feedback to us on any questions, concerns or expectations you have around the ICR. There is also the opportunity to register your interest in being involved with the ICR as a critical friend – providing feedback and being involved in further surveys as the ICR develops. This will help us to ensure that the ICR delivers the best solution for patients/service users.It should take you about 10 minutes to read the background about the ICR and then another 10 minutes to fill in the survey. Your feedback is really important to us.Closing date for responses: Wednesday 30 September 2020 We will regularly update information on the ICR on our website".

WARWICKSHIRE COUNTY COUNCIL - CONSULTATIONS

Warwickshire County Council regularly request input from the community on a variety of different matters via online consultations. These tend to be short surveys/questionnaires. The link 'WCC Consultations' under 'external links' on the right hand side of the page will take you to the home page for all current consultations. Please do get involved and have your say!

NEW HOUSING DEVELOPMENT - SALTER'S OAK - SPERNAL LANE

Following an 18 month build programme construction at Salter's Oak (Linfoot Oaks) has now completed. Since the last update the remaining three local market homes for sale have completed and been handed over to the new owners, plots 16 & 17 (the final two affordable homes to rent) have been handed over to Orbit Homes and Warwickshire Rural, and the new residents have moved in. All of the site hoarding was removed in August and the marketing sign board has recently been dismantled and removed so that the grass seeding to this area could be finished. The estate road and private access roads were tarmacked in early October giving a finished look to the whole area. Landscaping work continues as certain aspects can only be carried out at certain times of the year. Bare root planting, including the hedge along Spernal Lane (in front of plots 13-17), the landscape buffer belt, the balancing pond area and the open spaces will be done over the winter months, whereas the seeding to the balancing pond area and buffer belt (and any topping up as required to the open spaces) will be carried out in the early Spring. The landscaping that has already been undertaken is developing well and as it starts to mature will encourage wildlife

PARISH ASSEMBLY

Great Alne Parish Council held their Parish Assembly on Saturday 18th May 2019 at Great Alne & Kinwarton Memorial Hall. Thank you to everyone who attended. The Chair of the Parish Council gave his Annual Report and report on the accounts.

Minutes and four accompanying documents for the 2018 Parish Assembly can be downloaded as PDFs from the right hand side of the page.

The 2020 Parish Assembly was due to be held on 16th May 2020 but was cancelled due to Coronavirus.

GREAT ALNE PAROCHIAL CHARITY- MONEY WORRIES?

Are you struggling to find money to buy fuel this winter, pay a utility bill, replace a broken washing machine or fridge, or perhaps to pay for an urgent household repair or a taxi trip for a hospital appointment, or for some gardening when someone is ill?

Great Alne Parochial Charity can provide cash quickly and with the minimum of fuss to meet all kinds of urgent needs of a one-off nature that would otherwise be unaffordable. There are no restrictions on what help can be given. The money would be a grant not a loan. There would be no need to pay it back.

If you or someone you know needs financial assistance the charity would very much like to hear from you. Please phone Adrian (764261), Geoff (488405), Ian (488492) or Judy (488501) and they will see what they can do to help. All calls will be treated in strictest confidence.

DEFIBRILLATOR IN GREAT ALNE

Big Lottery Fund logoThe Lifeline View defibrillator is in an unlocked Rotaid cabinet In the telephone kiosk on School Road. You will need to twist and turn the circular lid to release. There is also an emergency phone. The defibrillator has been adopted by the Community Heartbeat Trust (CHT), is maintained by them but is regularly inspected by the Parish Council.

The Parish Council is grateful to the Big Lottery Fund for awarding a grant to purchase the defibrillator.

Please see the downloadable advice guide from CHT following awareness sessions on the right hand side of this page- 'What to do if someone collapses'.

A defibrillator is also located at Great Alne Park (formerly Maudslay Park) in the Reception Area of Maudslay House (the main clubhouse) by the left hand side of the entrance door hanging on a coat stand. A further defibrillator in the village is also being considered.

ROYAL MAIL- TACKLING SCAM MAIL

Royal Mail are raising awareness about scam mail. You can report scam mail in the following ways:

  • Write to Royal Mail at FREEPOST SCAM MAIL enclosing any items of scam mail
  • Call the Royal Mail Scam Mail Hotline on 0800 0113 466
  • Email: scam.mail@royalmail.com

DID YOU KNOW?

Residents in Warwickshire can now report Traffic Offences using digital evidence from dash cams.
Follow the link on the right of the page for further details.

BUS SERVICE IN GREAT ALNE

Just a quick reminder of the following bus services in Great Alne:

  • X19 operated mainly by Stagecoach with some peak journeys by Diamond Bus- 6 days a week including Bank Holidays (not Sundays)
  • Flexibus 212 operated by A & M Group - One journey a day on Tuesdays and Fridays
  • Flexibus 512 operated by A & M Group - One journey a day on Mondays
  • The UBUS community transport service can be used for a wide range of individual travel needs in the district, such as visiting friends, attending social groups, leisure activities, lifelong learning and, of course, shopping. Please note it cannot be used to attend medical appointments (please use the Volunteer Drivers scheme operated through VASA). The service operates from 9.30am-2.30pm Monday- Friday. Requires registration, please telephone 01789 264491 (See below for full details)

THE UBUS COMMUNITY TRANSPORT SERVICE

UBUS is a ring and ride community transport service operating within Stratford District.

UBUS is available to anyone in the district who struggles to access public transport due to mobility issues, health problems or who lives in an area with no, or infrequent, public transport.

UBUS will collect passengers from their door, drop them off at their destination, pick up again at the agreed point and drop off back at home. Drivers can assist passengers to get on & off the bus and will help with up to 3 shopping bags or a trolley if necessary.

All UBUS vehicles can accommodate a wheelchair.

Depending on where residents live in the district, a single journey costs £2.10, £2.70 or £3.40. Return journeys £4.20, £5.40 or £6.80. Great Alne residents would fall in the £2.70/£5.40 price range.

Residents living in an Orbit property are eligible for a £0.60 discount on their journey.

Journeys need to be booked in advance. Passengers can book up to seven days in advance.

UBUS provides transport in different parts of the district on specific days.

UBUS can be used to visit friends, attend social groups, leisure activities or go shopping. It cannot be used to attend medical appointments. Residents interested in registering with the service should ring 01789 264491.

MOVING PICTURES

Great Alne has a Film Club with screenings usually on the third Thursday of the month at 7.30pm.

For other information about what's going on at the Memorial Hall please use the link on the right hand side of the page.

'REPORT IT!'

Please let the Parish Council know of any local issue that is causing you concern. You can use the Contact Us form in the Information section of this website, or ring the Parish Clerk on 07833 790375 or alternatively email info@greatalne-pc.gov.uk.

If you have something you would like to report to Stratford on Avon District Council you can do this using their on-line forms. Anything from abandoned vehicles, unruly dogs to fly tipping can be reported.

For fly tipping please just click on the link on the right of this page (External Links).

WARWICKSHIRE POLICE, ALCESTER SOUTH SAFER NEIGHBOURHOOD TEAM

Each month a Community Newsletter is produced by the Alcester South Safer Neighbourhood Team that includes details of crime in the area (including Great Alne) and an incident overview. Please see the website for further details and a contact list for the team.

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NEWSLETTER

Regularly the Parish Council endeavours to compile a newsletter containing relevant and up to date information about events and issues within the parish. It is the intention of the Parish Council that every home within the parish boundary receives a copy of this newsletter, however, things can go wrong and if you have not been receiving your newsletter then please let us know, or download a copy from the list on the right hand side of the page. If you would like to receive the newsletter by email then please let us know by contacting info@greatalne-pc.gov.uk.

If you wish to suggest material to be included in the newsletter then please feel free to contact the Clerk, or make your suggestion known at the next Parish Council meeting - a full list of meeting dates can be found on the home page.

ALCESTER TOWN COUNCIL

Great Alne is closely associated with the beautiful market town of Alcester and a link to the town council website is on the right hand side of the page (External links).

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Printed 03 December 2020 at 10:16 hrs by 3.219.31.204