Help with your energy costs
As reported last month, Hampshire County Council is to launch a collective energy switching scheme that will allow Hampshire residents to get a better deal on their gas and electricity bills. Residents can sign up to Switch Hampshire and help to increase the negotiating power of the scheme. There are around 760,000 households in Hampshire.
If just two per cent join the scheme, this would give a combined purchasing power of over 15,000 customers, enabling the negotiation of greater discounts. Potentially, customers can save around £60 to £200 on their annual energy bills.
Residents will be able to sign up for the scheme in April and May 2013. All people have to do is register and Switch Hampshire will do the rest. There is no charge to take part and no obligation to make the switch once a quote has been received.
Look out for future announcements from Hampshire County Council and/or New Forest District Council.
Council Tax, 2013/14
There is good news for New Forest residents, with both Hampshire County Council and New Forest District Council agreeing to keep their tax levy at last year’s level. Copythorne Parish Council has also agreed to hold its precept at £14,700 for the coming year, albeit this will mean a 5% increase in the parish element of the council tax. This is because Government changes to housing benefit funding impacts on the way parish precepts are calculated. However, Copythorne residents will still pay the lowest council tax in the whole of the New Forest area.
For many years, the Parish Council has been responsible for maintaining the pond in Romsey Road, Copythorne. In the near future, the Council would like to work with the organisation Pond Conservation to carry out a survey of pond life and achieve a better idea of maintenance needs. The Council would be pleased to hear from any local resident willing to help as a volunteer in the survey. The Parish Clerk is happy to supply further details to anyone interested.
Become a Home Library Service volunteer
Can you spare a bit of time for someone else who loves books and reading? If you can commit to helping at least once a month then you could become a part of the Home Library Service Team taking books to people no longer able to make the journey for themselves. Volunteers select, borrow and deliver library material for individuals who can’t get to the nearest library or mobile stop due to frailty or mobility problems and don’t have anyone living locally to exchange books for them.
For more information on how to volunteer, please contact the Parish Clerk.
Copythorne Parish Hall Wi-FI
A reminder that Copythorne Parish Council has installed Wi-Fi in the parish hall which is available to local residents. If you are a regular, bona fide user of the parish hall and have a use for wi-fi facilities, contact the Parish Clerk for a password to access the facility.
Computer Club for Older People
Age Concern New Forest runs computer classes for older people at a number of local venues, including Copythorne Parish Hall. The classes can help you with word processing, surfing the internet and sending e-mails, all in a friendly and informal atmosphere. You can take your own laptop if you have one or use one provided at the class.
Sessions cost £5 each and will be run from 2 pm to 4 pm on the following Fridays: 19 April, 3 May, 17 May, 14 June, 28 June and 12 July. Contact 023 8084 1199 for further details.
Copythorne News is an independent website carrying local news items and details of local events and advertising. It serves all the communities in the parish of Copythorne and can be found at www.copythornenews.co.uk
The local Safer Neighbourhood Team’s latest beat report, showing crime figures for the beat area during February can be found on the parish council’s website. Residents are reminded that, pending the appointment of a new beat officer to replace PC Dee Faulkner, there will be no beat surgeries for the time being.
The Parish Council discusses all planning applications at each of its meetings – on the 2nd and 4th Tuesdays of the month If you think you may be affected by an application, the Council would be pleased to hear your views to help form a response to the planning authority (either the New Forest National Park Authority or New Forest District Council).
Comments can be made to the Parish Council either by letter or in person in the public participation session at the start of each meeting. Applications due to be considered at the next meeting can be found by clicking on Planning on the top menu on the Council’s website at www.copythorne.org.uk
The Council meets on the second and fourth Tuesdays of the month at 7 pm in the Copythorne Parish Hall (rear extension). Members of the public are very welcome to attend the meetings and speak on any matter of concern at the start of the meeting.
The dates of the next few meetings are:
Tuesday 9 April 2013 Planning
Tuesday 23 April Council
Tuesday 14 May 2013 Planning
Tuesday 28 May 2013 Annual Council Meeting
The Clerk to the Council (Mike Derrick) can be contacted at
3 Chichester Close,
Telephone and fax 01794 322080,
Details of individual Parish Councillors can also be found on the parish website.