Villages near Harlow in rural conference

Communities / Fri 25th Sep 2015 at 01:47pm

East HertsAround 30 representatives from villages throughout East Herts came together to discuss common issues at the annual Rural Parish Conference hosted by East Herts Council in Braughing in September.

The first section of the conference included Ageing Well issues touching on the availability of free dementia training, grants on offer – particularly activities grants to arrange events for older people who may feel isolated during the November-January holiday period. Also on the agenda was time banking – a scheme that allows people to use their time as a form of currency and exchange their skills. This was followed up with a presentation from Crossroads Care – a charity which offers support for people living with dementia and their carers so they can live more comfortably and keep well in their own homes.

Michele James from Walkern Parish Council said: “This is my first conference and I’ve found it very interesting. I’m particularly interested in the dementia training. Being a parent of a child with special needs, I think it’s so important to understand how carers feel, as well as those people living with their particular condition.

John Lambie from Brickendon Liberty Parish Council said: “I’ve found the conference very informative as I like to work closely with East Herts. It’s also an opportunity to comment on issues which don’t often get aired.”

East Herts Safer Neighbourhood Police Team for the rural areas gave a presentation about their priorities and their current campaign focusing on responsible dog ownership. This was followed by a talk about the council’s work on tackling dog-fouling and fly-tipping.

Robert Price, Researcher for Sir Oliver Heald QC MP said: “I’m happy to have been able to attend on Oliver’s behalf. The morning’s presentations highlighted the vital role that charities, voluntary organisations and local authorities play in the life of local communities and the event provided an important opportunity for these groups to share ideas and engage in a dialogue with community representatives.”

The second half of the conference included other useful topics with more grants information and talks about rural business development, housing advice and an update on the District Plan.

Mike Styles who volunteers at Braughing Church Hall said: “I’ve had fun organising the hall for the conference and I hope everyone had a good day. “

Executive member for health and wellbeing Eric Buckmaster said: “This annual conference is an ideal opportunity to provide information to representatives from villages across the district and for them to give us their feedback and discuss ideas.”

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