Rod Barnes, Porthleven Town Warden set to retire

I think the majority of Porthleven know of Porthleven’s Town Warden, Rod Barnes – also known as ‘Barney’. Rod has been in this post for over 10 years and has carried out his role in wind, shine, rain and snow.

Sadly, Rod has submitted his notice to Porthleven Town Council as he wants to retire. His retirement date is set for 12th November 2016

I want to pay tribute to Rod for his work over the last 10 years. Rod does more than just empty the bins and tidy-up. He is always willing to step up and help and go that extra mile. Often out of his core hours to carry out his duties. He often gives his time for free to help out during events in Porthleven. He has been a real asset to Porthleven Town Council and Porthleven. I for one will miss seeing Rod around Porthleven with his yellow shirt and hat.

We should all approach Rod, shake his hand and say thank you for all he has done between now and his retirement day. Good luck Rod, enjoy your retirement. I will certainly buy you a pint or two on your retirement!

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Rod ‘Barney’ Barnes, Porthleven’s Town Warden

 

The possible future use of the Bickford-Smith Institute

At June’s Porthleven Town Council meeting, the Institute working group shared with the wider membership of the town council their proposals for the future use of Porthleven’s most iconic building. These proposals have taken into consideration the feedback from the open day with the aim on to how best how to renovate this iconic building.

 

As you see from the pictures above, this building has a lot of potential. However, due to the sheer scale of money needed which will be in excess of £600k, and may be closer to the £1m mark, the working group have put forward what will be seen as a controversial use. Namely to turn a part of the building into a holiday let. The part which is a proposal to turn into a let is the former caretakers home – which currently home to the town clerk’s office and the council meeting room.

The principle behind this is because whilst some of the money needed to renovate this building will come from grants, not all the money will be found this way. This means the town council may have to take out a loan as part of the project. Of course, this loan has to be paid back, and instead of just adding the repayments to the town council precept ie. the tax payer, the proposal is to turn part of the building into a holiday let to give an income to repay any loan or costs for renovation.

 

I am not part of the working group, so I have had no input on the direction, but for me the renovation and preservation of the building is paramount. The sheer scale of funding needed has I believe pushed the working group into looking at the holiday let option. The question is, is this the right option?

As I said before, I want the Institute to have a long future, but I am not sold on the idea of turning parts of the building into a holiday let. Holiday lets are a controversial subject in Porthleven. So is it right for the council to turn part of its building into a holiday let? Maybe instead of a holiday let, income could be raised renting it long term? 

However, is the holiday let option the only one that will give enough income to pay for/support the Institute for its renovation?  After all, the majority of the building will still be used for the community. Any idea including holiday let, long term rental or other business use will have to be costed to make sure it stacks up. Only then will there be a firm idea of what works and gives the income needed. 

Furthermore, I was disappointed in the update did not confirm a place for the snooker club, which I believe they should be part of the institutes future. Rather the update said:

“The consultation to date indicates that there is a call for a Snooker Club in Porthleven. The Working Party recommends that consideration be given to the Snooker Club in order to arrive at an amicable solution, with the possibility of relocation being discussed, and further meetings and consultation will be undertaken”.

The important part of all this is the proposals shared at the meeting are not set in stone. There will be a further round of public consultation where people can have a further say. So a lot can and no doubt will change from now and the final plan.

New Ping-Pong Tables for Porthleven

Anyone who visited the Moors playing field yesterday would have noticed two Ping-Pong tables. These tables have been bought by Porthleven Town Council with support from my Community Grand Fund. The tables have been bought for community use.

One table is an outdoor table, and will be located on the Moors. The other more suited to indoor use.

These tables are here due to Cllr Robyn Davies’ hard-work. Robyn should be thanked for this work in securing these two tables. Rumour has it there will be a Mayor / Deputy Mayor match in the not too distant future…

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Porthleven is awarded £75k for new skate park from Sports England

Christmas has come early for those behind the wheeled sports facility (skate park) with the award of £75k from Sports England. In a highly competitive process, with over 600 applicants, Porthleven Town Council today was officially told it had been successful.

Young People hear the good news about the great news


The £120k project is made possible with matched funding of £20k by Porthleven Town Council, a staggering £22,120 raised from within the community with Porthleven Surf Club, Cober Valley Rotary Club, Porthleven Food Festival and Helstonbury all raising over £1000, and now the £75k from Sports England. This leaves £5,800 to raise.

The lead bid writer, Zoe Davies said: the award of £75k allows us to finally realise our dream of a much needed modern skate park in Porthleven. When the Skate Park Funding Raising Committee was set up, we knew the £120k total was realistic because we had the whole community with us.

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The Mayor of Porthleven signs the funding acceptance form.

This statement was supported by the Mayor of Porthleven, Councillor Barbara Powell who commented that the young people deserve this new wheel sports facility. It has been made possible because everyone had worked together to make this happen. The Mayor had the pleasure of signing the official offer letter on behalf of Porthleven Town Council and the fund raising committee.

Mark Adair who is leading the charge on raising the remaining money said, we are confident that we will raise the remaining £5,800 in no time at all, the support we have had so far has been unbelievable, so we feel we can push on and raise the rest. The committee have been working on a number of ideas which we will start to put into action over the coming weeks, join our Facebook group “Porthleven Skate Park Project” to see how you can get involved. If you would like to make a donation you can via our website www.porthlevenskatepark.co.uk.

When I was informed of the successful bid by Sports England I could hardly believe it. The competition for funding was highly competitive and Sports England liaison officer said the Porthleven bid was a very strong one. For me, this bid is down to the hard work of Zoe Davies, Naomi Osmond, Dai Lawton and Mark Adair who have spent many hours making sure this bid was perfect.

Well done to everyone who has made this happen.

 

 

 

 

The new Mayor and Deputy Mayor of Porthleven 

Porthleven Town Council has elected its Mayor and Deputy Mayor for the 2016/17 civic year. The new Mayor of Porthleven is Barbara Powell (who was deputy for the last two years, and yours truly has the honour to be the Deputy Mayor of Porthleven.

The new Mayor said on her election to office: I feel very privileged to have been elected mayor of Porthleven. It all seems rather unreal but I will work hard for our little town. I want to include everyone in caring and improving where we live making it the thriving community that it is, a wonderful place to live.

Furthermore, Barbara said she will rely on Daniel William’s good sense and support and experience of being mayor.  Having Andrew Wallis as my deputy will be a great asset as he also brings being a County Councillor to the job. Thank you to the town Councillors who elected me, for their wide range of skills and good humour they bring to the monthly council meetings.

I am very grateful to Members of Porthleven Town Council for having faith in me and electing me to the office of Deputy Mayor of Porthleven. I very much look forward to supporting Barbara Powell, as Mayor of Porthleven in the coming year. I must pay tribute to Daniel Williams who has led Porthleven Town Council for the last two years. He has carried out this role brilliantly, and has raised the profile of Porthleven both near and far during his term of office.

 

Launch of Porthleven’s ‘pick up your dogs poo’ campaign starts with free dog chipping

Wednesday, saw the launch of Porthleven’s fight-back against those irresponsible dog owners who fail to pick up their dogs mess. Everyone say’s it is not me, I always pick-up, however, dog poo that’s not picked up blights our open spaces and pavements. It is also a health hazard. 

The campaign has been made possible by a small working group being form that is made up of residents and Porthleven Town Council who worked with the children at Porthleven School to deliver a simple campaign message: you know what to do, please pick up my poo.

 

The campaign logo

 
At the official launch,  the working group arranged for the dog chipping team from Cornwall Council to give any unchipped dog, a free micro chip. As from April 6th, it is illegal for any dog to be unchipped. Owners of unchipped dogs could face a £500 fine if caught. 

During the course of the day, over 200 dogs were chipped. In fact, before the event officially started, people were queuing. The dog chipping team said it was one of their busiest days. 

  
     

Thanks must go to Cornwall Council’s dog chipping team who worked virtually non-stop throughout the day (they were supplied with one of Porthleven’s fantastic pasties). 

Huge thanks has to go to the working party of Dick, Barbara, Lesley and Philippa and all the others who helped start this campaign. Well done. Let’s hope people listen, and pick up their dogs mess! 

Just so you know, all public rubbish bins in Porthleven can be used to deposit dog mess. Not just the dedicated dog waste bins. 

Porthleven Town Council wants to hear your views on how the Bickford Smith Institute should be used.

Porthleven Town Council is seeking views from the community on the future use of the Bickford Smith Institute. Currently, the town council use the former institute cottage as their administration office and meeting place, with the main hall being used as the snooker club.

This is a public building and the town council therefore believe this building should be accessible and used by the whole community in a variety of uses.

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Furthermore, the building itself needs a lot of work to its structure. The building is getting old and has faced the full force of the elements for over 134 years. This has taken its toll on the building and the material state of the building needs to be addressed sooner than later.

The work required is not going to be cheap, » Read more

Rachel Baker, Porthleven’s Royal British Legion Poppy Apeal Organiser

Last week, Porthleven Town Council awarded one of its town plaques to Rachel Baker. The reason for the award was to recognise the work by Rachel in rasing money for the Royal British Legion Poppy Appeal.

Rachel has been the local organiser for the Poppy Appeal since 2010. In that time, Porthleven has raised £35,750. A staggering amount for a population of under 4000. This year’s Poppy Appeal raised just over £2800.

It does not just stop there. As Rachel has done a lot of research on those mens names who are on the War Memorial from the Great War, Second World War, and Aden. From this research, Rachel has compiled a small book. It brings to life the story behind the names who are carved onto the War Memorial.

Well done Rachel, you throughly deserve the award of the town plaque.

Rachel being awarded the town plaque by the Mayor.

Rachel being awarded the town plaque by the Mayor.

Public Consultation for Origin Coffee new building in the Shipyard, Porthleven

Just over six-weeks ago, the media covered a pre-application plan for a new mixed-used building to house Origin’s business operation. The area this business is planned tobe located is in the Porthleven Shipyard. From the responses I have had, ranged from WTF, OMG to Wow, this is good.

Now the pre-application process is out-of-the-way, the Harbour and Dock Company want to proceed to the next stage of the planning process and submit a full planning application. However, before they do, the company will be holding a public consultation event to gather all views before a full planning application is submitted.

This event will take place on Friday October 9th between 16:00 – 18:00pm at The Brew House on the Harbour Head.

The plan is ambitious, and includes (taken from the pre-app document):

A drum at the pavement edge contains the café, training and office uses. It addresses the public space, the harbour and the views with its curved façade. The rear rectangular form is a simple large industrial volume with private access at the rear of the site away from public interaction.

The design is bold, but has a strong relationship with Porthleven: the materials are “of the place”; the massing and organisation relate well to the site, the built context and the public space; the building use/typology is symptomatic of Porthleven’s new/ emerging positive identity – a centre of food culture and high quality tourism. 

The existing bus stop is a standard stand-alone plastic and steel shelter of poor quality. The approximate location of the new shelter will remain unchanged but is now integrated into the new building. Its glass roof links the existing single storey Brew House building (once the harbour master’s office) with the drum of the new Origin building. The choice and quality of materials will match those of the new building.

This development presents an opportunity for a huge improvement of this focal public space. A newly paved shared surface with re-aligned kerb edges could be provided, giving greater space for and priority to, pedestrians. With views onto both sides of the harbour this is an important orientation point for visitors to Porthleven.

It connects pedestrian routes from the public car parks and to the green space further up the valley. Some information/signage might be appropriate as well as seating. A large baulk timber screen wall is also shown which conceals parked cars within the Shipyard and the trash screen from the public space and provides a new backdrop suggestive of the former uses and materials associated with the shipyard.

 

The pictures below will illustrate the plan and give you an idea how the building would like if it was approved (in the current form). I should point out a lot can and does change from a concept to planning permission being granted. Including taking onboard the public view.

FullSizeRender (1) FullSizeRender (2) FullSizeRender (3) FullSizeRenderoriginAs I said before, the plan is ambitious, and will be discussed on its merits and benefits to Porthleven. One of those merits or disadvantaged (depending on your view-point) is this will bring more (abet some relocated) employment to Porthleven. I am often told Porthleven needs more job opportunities. So could this plan be one of those opportunities?

The answer to that question will be up to you, the residents of Porthleven. Therefore, I urge you to take the time to see the plans in full and ask any questions you may have.

Porthleven’s Mayor and Deputy Major re-elected

At the Porthleven Town Council AGM, the current Mayor, Councillor Daniel Williams and Deputy Mayor, Councillor Barbara Powell were unanimously re-elected for the following civic year.

I would like to offer my congratulations to both, who have for the past year been a great ambassadors for Porthleven in carrying our their duties.

The Mayor and Deputy Major of Porthleven for the civic year

The Mayor and Deputy Major of Porthleven for the civic year

 

 

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