Welcome to this week's newsletter.
You might have seen lots of debate about HS2 in the press. I know not all my constituents and people in Cheshire think HS2 is a good idea. There has always been lots of debate about it. When I became the candidate for Crewe & Nantwich in 2018 I spent a lot of time asking people about it and it was actually knocking on doors and speaking to people that worked in the railway industry locally that convinced me it was a good thing for Crewe & Nantwich and the North West economy. I have explained why in more detail below.
The Government has announced Cheshire East will get £1.18 Million in both 2023/4 and 2024/5 from the Bus Service Improvement Plan. I know from speaking with residents how important reliable bus services are in keeping communities connected - so its great to see this investment.
It's great to see that the King George V Football Pitch project is moving forward. All of the credit must go to the team from Crewe FC and their partners - well done for all of your hard work!
We have details of an amazing charity that grants wishes for people facing terminal illnesses. Please have a look if you might know someone who could apply.
Crewe Christmas Market are looking for applicants-find out how to apply in the details below.
I've mentioned the Stroke Survivors Group before-a great local group-and they are having a fundraiser in November. Looks like it will be fun!
We've also been sent a very long list of various grants that are currently open for applications. Take a look if you run a local group that could benefit!
If you are eligible and haven't managed to book your COVID booster yet we have details of some drop in clinics below.
Have a great weekend.
King George V Playing Field
Stroke Survivors Group Animal Race Night
Grants Open for Application
Christmas Market Stalls
Covid Vaccine Drop In Clinics
You might have seen lots of debate about HS2 in the press. I know not all my constituents and people in Cheshire think HS2 is a good idea. There has always been lots of debate about it. When I became the candidate for Crewe & Nantwich in 2018 I spent a lot of time asking people about it and it was actually knocking on doors and speaking to people that worked in the railway industry locally that convinced me it was a good thing for Crewe & Nantwich and the North West economy.
It isn't just about speed to London-its about capacity locally and cutting down journey times to places like Birmingham and Manchester as well. I want more young people to feel like they can stay in Crewe & Nantwich and the North West to access all the job opportunities the three biggest UK cities offer. People staying locally spend money locally to help our local economy and over time can setup their own businesses and bring back their experience to help grow our local opportunities. We also have great railway businesses locally so spend in rail helps us. The Crewe Works site has a contract for HS2 bogies.
There is no doubt that we have to get better at building major infrastructure and getting the private sector investing. I understand why people are concerned about the growing costs. I am not a defender of every penny and pound spent by HS2. But controlling cost should be our focus-not scaling back.
Remember the Channel Tunnel was over budget by 80%. That isn't a good thing, but I don't think people would say it should not have been built. Its also worth remembering the cost covers more than 15 years of building. We still spend more on the rest of the railways during that time.
We have already electrified more than 1,200 miles of rail since 2010. Labour did 63 miles in the 13 years they were in. We also have other projects to help level up like the £22.9 million Crewe Town Deal and the huge amount of funding going into a new hospital at Leighton. So HS2 isn't the only game in town.
I also understand with the Ukraine War and cost of living challenges why any government would look at such a big amount of government spending. If there is a plan to do something differently then of course I will look at it. We could do Northern Powerhouse Rail elements sooner and HS2 later for example. But ultimately I think connecting Crewe to Manchester, Birmingham and London on a new high speed line will bring huge benefits to this area and want to see it completed.
I know from speaking with residents how important reliable bus services are in keeping communities connected.
That is why it is great news to see that Cheshire East will be getting over £1.18 Million in new Government investment to improve local services.
Cheshire East will get £1.18 Million in both 2023/4 and 2024/5 from the Bus Service Improvement Plan. They can choose to use this is in different ways, such as bringing in new routes, extending timetables or making fares cheaper.
Full information is available here: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/80-million-funding-delivered-to-improve-and-protect-bus-services
King George V Football Pitch
Great to see that the King George V Football Pitch project is moving forward. All of the credit must go to the team from Crewe FC and their partners.
They have worked tirelessly over a number of months and years meeting with representatives from the Football Foundation and the Council to bring forward workable proposals which would help address the shortage of grassroot football facilities in Crewe.
The Genie’s Wish is a charity that aims to improve the lives of those battling a critical or terminal illness by granting them a life-changing wish or opportunity.
They have asked if there is anybody locally who could benefit from this amazing opportunity? This could be anything from offering a once in a lifetime opportunity to someone who is suffering from terminal illness or helping someone with a life-limiting condition get specialised equipment that makes their lives easier.
To be eligible the recipient must be under 40 years old.
For more information visit their website via the link here: https://www.genieswish.co.uk/
Stroke Survivors Group Animal Race Night
Tickets are now available for the Stroke Survivors Speech & Language Support Group’s fun animal race night on 18th November, 6:30pm at Richmond Village in Nantwich.
I’ve been able to visit this group and see what a great community they have built.
This is their main fundraiser for the year so please do go along and support them so they can continue their fantastic work helping stroke survivors recover, reclaim and rebuild their lives after stroke.
It’ll be a great night of fun and entertainment so why not grab your friends, work colleagues or family and come and have a great night whilst supporting a wonderful cause. It’s a bargain at only £10 a ticket!
Tickets can be bought at any of their 3 groups in Crewe, Alsager and Sandbach or email email@example.com.
Grants Open for Application
Below is a list of grants, compiled by Cheshire East, that are currently open for application. If you run a local community group or charity take a look to see if you could benefit.
BBC Children in Need - Core Grants
Eligibility: Registered not-for-profit organisations who work with disadvantaged children and young people of 18 years
Community Ownership Fund
Applications will be accepted from voluntary and community organisations from all parts of the United Kingdom who have a viable plan for taking ownership of a community asset at risk and running it sustainably for community benefit.
The Primary Club - James Fund
The funding is intended to support grass roots and start up sporting and/or recreational projects for the blind and visually impaired in the UK.
Family Action - National School Breakfast
Schools in disadvantaged areas will be eligible for the programme if they have 40% or more pupils in bands A-F of the income deprivation affecting children index (IDACI). This will include state-funded primary, secondary, special schools and alternative provision.
Crowdfunder Cost of Living Crisis Emergency Fund
The funding is for community organisations that are helping to tackle food poverty in their local area.
Henry Smith Charity - Main Grants - Strengthening Communities
The fund focuses on funding small charitable organisations working at grassroots level, to ensure that funding reaches the most disadvantaged areas of the UK, targeting places that are economically marginalised and affected by poverty.
Will Charitable Trust
The funding is intended for UK registered or exempt charities whose activities fall within the following three categories:
• Care of and services for blind people, and the prevention and/or cure of blindness.
• Long-term care of people with learning disabilities either: in a residential care or supported living environment in a way that provides a family environment and wide choice of activities and lifestyle; or: by providing long-term day/employment activities.
• Care of and services for people suffering from cancer and their families. Consideration may be given to charities whose projects are specifically aimed at the cancer care element of their work.
Grocers' Charity - Memorial Grants
One-off grants are available to small UK registered charities for work in the specific areas of: relief of youth poverty, the disabled, the elderly, health, military, and the arts and heritage.
BBC Children in Need - Project Grants
The Trust distributes the funds raised each year as grants to organisations that work with disadvantaged children and young people, under the age of 18, living in the UK.
LoveReading4Kids Funding for Schools
LoveReading will provide grants to schools via a credit to be spent on their online bookstore to purchase non-curriculum books.
Masonic Charitable Foundation – Children and Young People Grants Programme
The Masonic Charitable Foundation (MCF) offers grants to local and national charities in England and Wales as part of its work to help thousands of disadvantaged and vulnerable people to live happy, fulfilling lives and participate actively in society. Over the last 40 years, the MCF has provided more than £130 million to charities. The MCF’s work is funded solely through the donations of Freemasons under the United Grand Lodge of England, their families and friends.
Family Fund Trust
The Family Fund is working towards an inclusive society where families with severely disabled or seriously ill children have choices and the opportunity to enjoy ordinary life. The Trust believes services to families with severely disabled children are most effective when they can be adapted to families' individual needs and personal ways of coping. The Trust, therefore, encourages families to demonstrate the kind of support that would best meet their needs in easing the stress of caring for severely disabled children.
Variety Club - Equipment Grants
The scheme is intended to support organisations which work with sick, disabled or disadvantaged children up to and including the age of 18 years. In particular, the scheme wishes to provide funding for specialist equipment for direct use by children.
Christmas Market Stalls
Applications are currently open to have a stall at the Crewe Christmas Market on 25th November. If you have a local business and would like to have one please contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Covid Vaccine Drop In Centre
The Council’s Public Health Team are working with the Cheshire and Wirral Partnership (CWP) Living Well service to provide additional clinics in areas where there is less service provision, and have scheduled the following drop-in COVID-19 vaccination clinics:
• Thursday 5th October 2023: Audlem Public Hall (CW3 0AH), 10:30 – 16:00
• Wednesday 11th October 2023, Crewe ASDA Car Park (CW1 2PT), 10:30 – 16:00
• Tuesday 17th October 2023: Audlem Public Hall (CW3 0AH), 10:30 – 16:00
For full details of eligibility visit here: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/covid-19/covid-19-vaccination/
The following are road closures for the week ahead as reported by Cheshire east.
Annions Lane - Until 20th November
Flowers Lane – Until 26th Nov (see Leighton closures)
Smithy Lane – Until 1st Nov (see Leighton closures)
Manor Way - 25th September until 17th November
Park Road - Until 19th October
A530 (Underwood Lane to Bright Street) 30th September until 1st October
A500 (Newcastle Road to A5020) - 2nd October until 4th October
For further details of the closures around Leighton hospital, please see: North West Crewe Package (cheshireeast.gov.uk)