STC – Supporting the Just for Women Centre

In September 2015, Stanley Town Council was approached by PS Dave Clarke who had a vision to turn a junk shop on Stanley Front Street into a community cafe which would provide support, training and mentoring and help to tackle social isolation and a range of issues. The Town Council supported his vision by taking the lease of the building on and that initiative has grown into PACT House, which has been a shining example of how a local council can tactically deploy a small part of its budget to empower and enable a wide section of the community and support volunteering and community led social support by giving them a focal point with security of tenure.

The Council believes this model of supporting key local third sector partners is a model which not only provides support for people at the sharp end where it is needed but also represents incredible value for money. The Council could not possibly have provided a resource like PACT House on its own without spending hundreds of thousands of pounds and had it tried to, there would have been no guarantee that the public would have ‘bought in’ in the way that they have with PACT being an independent locally managed organisation.

Following this model, the Town Council is now in the process of trying to secure a permanent base for the Just for Women Centre. The Just for Women centre is another local success story, providing help and support and therapeutic services for hundreds of local women, young people (and men, through their CREE projects) which have been vital helping vulnerable people who have nowhere else to turn. They also work with young people from both local secondary schools and through the Catch 22 programme. Their current premises are being sold and there is a real risk that the charity and the services it provides could be lost to Stanley if they cannot find suitable alternative accomodation. The programme of austerity that has been in place for nearly 8 years means that many vital services supporting local people have been lost as the statutory providers can increasingly only deal with only those in absolutely dire need. Without services like Just for Women and PACT House, there would be many more in dire need which would stretch those statutory services even further and further squeeze people in need of help and support locally.

An article form the Northern Echo last year gives just some examples of the work that the centre has done locally.

http://www.thenorthernecho.co.uk/news/15671566.A_haven_for_the_desperate___Just_For_Women_Centre_has_been_a_lifeline_for_women_from_all_over_the_region/

Local MP Kevan Jones, who is president of the charity, said “I’m delighted to see that the Town Council are rising to the challenge of using their limited resources to see services provided in Stanley in an innovative way by working in partnership and providing support to third sector providers to enable the community to help themselves and deliver much greater value for money”

This is why the Town is proposing to purchase a building in Stanley to lease to the Just for Women Centre to give them the security of tenure to keep their existing services going and be able to build their programme in the future. We welcome the public’s opinions as to whether supporting local charities to provide services in Stanley is a good approach for the Town Council to take.

Local Sporting Club Needs Your Support

Derwentside A.C. based in Stanley have a chance to win £200,000 to help improve facilities for athletics in the town. The club are through to the national final of Persimmon Homes Healthy Communities Competition and need your support against 29 other finalists. The public vote is open until 16th March and each individual can vote once per day until the closing date.

Brian Buckley chairman of Derwentside A.C. was delighted by the news “We have some excellent young athletes at the club who would benefit greatly from better outdoor facilities to train on and this is a once in a lifetime opportunity to help our young people. “

The club is based at North Durham Academy.  Kevin Reynolds, Executive Principal of North Durham Academy congratulated Derwentisde A.C. on their success in the competition so far, “The news that Derwentside A.C. have progressed to the national finals could provide fantastic opportunities for both the club and wider local community and we look forward to working on any future developments that may arise out of the competition with Derwentside A.C. and Durham County Council. The possibility of funding to improve facilities that will support the development of young people is an exciting prospect for all.”

 

Votes can be cast via the Persimmon website https://www.persimmonhomes.com/healthy-communities/finalists

Council Agenda and Papers 23rd January 2018

Next week’s Full Council meeting will see the Council set the budget for the 2018/19 Financial Year. Other business being considered will include Stanley in Bloom, Funding Police Vehicles and a review of the Council staffing structure (this item will be in closed session).

The meeting will be held at 6.30pm on Tuesday 23rd January at the Civic Hall. All Town Council meetings are open to members of the public.

If members of the public wish to ask the Council questions at the meeting, they must be submitted in advance of the meeting to the Town Clerk, either in person or by email to info@stanley-tc.gov.uk

‘-FC Agenda 23 January 18

Background Papers January 18

Extraordinary Council Meeting 7th November 2017

The Town Mayor has called an extraordinary Council meeting next Tuesday to consider a request for support from the Just for Women Centre. An extraordinary meeting can be called at any time by the Town Mayor, or by two ordinary members of Council to consider a single issue. The agenda is linked below.

‘-ExC Agenda 7 November 2017

ATTACHMENT A – Just for women request – redacted

Securing the future, remembering the past – Pine St Improvements

A regeneration project that captures the history of its residents has been completed in South Moor.

Due to issues with flooding across the South Moor Terraces in Stanley, the Wear Rivers Trust, in partnership with the Heritage Lottery Fund, Stanley Town Council, Durham County Council, Groundwork North East and contractors Seymour Civil Engineering have installed a sustainable urban drainage system, a natural approach to managing drainage and recycling water.

To do this, rain garden planters were fitted between the pavement, providing homes for five trees, each commemorating one year of fighting in the First World War.

Along with additional foliage, the trees, positioned along the length of Pine Street, act as markers within the Twizell Heritage Trail, a route which tells the story of South Moor’s origins shortly before the First World War and how the miners shaped the community. Each tree will be marked with a World War one battle insignia, remembering the hundreds of miners who lost their lives.

The project also saw the pathways fitted with block paving designed in the style of old fashioned film reel to commemorate the important role that local cinemas played in war time communications.

During both World Wars, the community surrounding Stanley depended upon the five cinemas in the area for updates from the frontline.

Town Mayor Bala Nair said: “It’s fantastic to see a project that the Town Council has invested in come to fruition. The new scheme has given Pine St a big facelift but it will also have a positive impact in reducing the incidence of flooding in South Moor, which has been a problem for years”

Adrian Cantle-Jones, the Durham County Council Project Manager, said: “South Moor residents are delighted with the wonderful improvements to Pine Street and the wider Twizzel Burn and South Moor Heritage Trail. The South Moor Partnership is looking forward to continuing the regeneration of the South Moor Terraces and Twizzel Burn Catchment”.

Keith Love from Seymour Civil Engineering, said: “As a company, we are really proud to have been a part of a project that has not only contributed to environmental improvement and flood alleviation, but has commemorated Stanley’s heritage.

Stanley Town Council invested £60,000 in the Pine St scheme, the improvements in Memorial park including the new bridges in the woods and contributes to the maintenance of the heritage trail, keeping the path clear for people to enjoy.

Finance & Governance Meeting 11th October 2017

Next week’s Finance & Governance meeting will be held at the Civic Hall at 6pm on Wednesday 11th October.  Items on the agenda for consideration include: Grant Funding; Consideration of the initial draft of next year’s budget and apprentices. The full agenda and background papers re linked below:

‘-Finance and Governance Agenda 11-10-17

Finance Papers October 17

PLEASE NOTE THAT NEXT WEEK’S SCHEDULED PROJECTS MEETING ON 10th OCTOBER HAS BEEN CANCELLED.

Full Council Papers Uploaded 18th April 2017

The final Full Council meeting of the current Council will be held next Tuesday at 6.30 pm at the Civic Hall. Business for discussion includes: Events, Heritage Funding, Civic Hall theatre improvements, Relocation of the Louisa Morrison Memorial from St Aidan’s Church, Council Offices update, New Member Training after the election.

The public are welcome and encouraged to attend. The meeting will be streamed live on Facebook.

Agenda 18 April 2017

Background Papers