Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Play time

Amidst the more mundane and routine meetings yesterday was one on new initiatives for play in the borough. It's become obvious over the last 12 months that finally people like central government advisers and safety experts have concluded that children need adventure and that falling over etc is a learning experience and not something to be avoided at all costs. So there's quite a lot of money available for groups to bid for to have play spaces which allow that adventure in a relatively safe environment. Stockton has been awarded some of that money and although the first year's allocation is being used on things which were already planned there's some available for new projects for next year and the year after. Today the Parish Council Recreation committee met to discuss how to go about bidding for some of that money to help with the plans we have for our play areas. Incorporating some elements of natural play and adventure into Amberley Way and St Margarets would go a long way towards helping our young people enjoy being out of doors and active. Fingers crossed!

The less fun, but necessary part of the day was the planning training which occupied the twilight spot from 4 till 6. Part of the requirement for councillors to sit on the planning committee is that we keep up to date with the issues around fettering discretion and declaring interests, keeping within the laws and codes of conduct and generally making sure that we are not only doing things properly but making it clear to the public that we are doing them properly. This element of training is taken very seriously by committee and officers alike. There are other aspects of training on which we disagree, but that's an issue for another day.

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