Parish Council Vacancy
Following the retirement of John Gibbon there is a vacancy on Bishopstone Parish Council. The Council is responsible for maintaining and enhancing the amenities of the village. Recent work includes the huge improvements made to the Children’s Play Area, the provision of public access defibrillators and tackling emergencies from the Covid pandemic to storm damage. Last year the council spent more than £20,000 on work in the village. By joining the Parish Council you can help to ensure the continuing conservation, improvement and enjoyment of the place in which we all live.
The time commitment is not huge – six meetings a year and a few emails from me along the way! You don’t need years of local knowledge, so younger or more recent new residents would be very welcome.
If you would like information on how to apply or to discuss what is involved in being a Councillor please contact me on 01722 781044.
Bishopstone Parish Council
Ukraine Refugees - Action in Wiltshire
The attached note has been circulated to Parish Councils setting out the latest state of play on support for people from Ukraine in Wiltshire.
£150 Government Energy Rebate
Wiltshire Council - Update on Support for People from Ukraine
Update on support for people of Ukraine
Can I first start with saying thank you for everything you and your communities are doing to support our Ukrainian refugees coming to live in Wiltshire.
I know things are busy now as a number of refugees have started to arrive and this means there is a great deal of work going on to help provide support including community hubs being set up and various community support which is heartening to see.
I wanted to use this latest briefing to provide you with an update on where we are currently with our support for refugees
Approximately 1,500 households registered for the Homes for Ukraine scheme and latest figures show 339 households have been matched with 930 individuals.
There have also been 90 school applications, 60 primary and 30 secondary, with many joining classes now Easter holidays have completed.
The government is separately issuing the visas for Ukrainian refugees. The checks, which local authorities have been asked to carry out, can wait until the guest has arrived as the Home Office will undertake their own checks prior to the guests’ arrival to speed up the process. Wiltshire Council will continue to carry out the required checks and the team will be in touch with sponsors to arrange, but these should not delay the issue of the guests’ visas.
Currently Ukrainian refugees can enter the country in two ways - as part of the Homes for Ukraine scheme or through the Ukraine Family Scheme
For the Homes for Ukraine scheme the government makes local authorities aware of the numbers coming through so they can carry out checks and provide access to benefits. The government supplies funding including the one off £200 emergency fund to the guest and the £350 monthly payment for sponsors. The council also receives £10,500 per individual to provide wraparound support.
However for the family scheme councils receive no notification and there is currently no financial support. Although there is no additional government funding for these families, knowing where they are based will help map out where additional support to wider services may be needed, This could be for school places or to work with partners where services may be required. Therefore, Wiltshire Council is asking people or communities who are welcoming Ukrainian refugees under the family scheme to email email@example.com.
We know our communities are busy helping Ukrainian refugees settle into Wiltshire and we’ve expanded our own teams to ensure we carry out the checks needed and also provide the ongoing support. There is a lot of work going on behind the scenes.
Please continue to promote the welcome pack which is available on the council webpage Support for Ukraine - Wiltshire Council. The webpage has general information on providing support as well as frequently asked questions for those involved in supporting the refugees and for people who want to find out more. It provides local information to sit alongside the government information for refugees Welcome: a guide for Ukrainians arriving in the UK. We also have a link to our newsletters which are sent out to our sponsors under the Homes for Ukraine scheme which you can find under the key information links page.
The government has also produced a pack for sponsors.
The government’s Homes for Ukraine scheme offers a route to those who want to come to the UK and who have someone willing to provide them with a home. Individuals, charities, community groups and businesses can volunteer accommodation. People interested can record their interest at www.gov.uk/homes-for-ukraine to receive updates and more information on how to apply .
Thank you again for your continued support.
Cllr Richard Clewer, Leader of Wiltshire Council