Vacancy for councillor

THERE IS A VACANT SEAT ON THE COUNCIL.

Applications are invited from parishioners who wish to be considered for co-option on to the Parish Council.

Please send a letter or email of application to the Clerk (details below) by WEDNESDAY, 1 SEPTEMBER 2021.

Please don’t hand your letter to a Councillor as that would preclude them from the voting process.

Fortnightly meetings are held every 2 – 3 weeks in Georgeham Village Hall with a focus on planning at the mid monthly meeting.

The co-option will take place at the Parish Council Meeting on Tuesday, 7 September 2021 at 6pm in Georgeham Village Hall.

If there is more than one nomination, a paper ballot will be held.

Those who have nominated themselves do not have to leave the room while the co-option is dealt with.

To be eligible you need to be a parishioner, or work in the Parish, or own land in the Parish or live 3 miles from the Parish boundary.

Mrs Sue Squire

Parish Clerk, Georgeham Parish Council

Haxlea, 2 Threeways

Bratton Fleming, Barnstaple

EX31 4TG. 01598 710526.

sue@suesquire.com

19 July 2021

New regulations for Council Meetings

Parish Councils are no longer allowed to hold meetings via Zoom due to government legislation.  Councillors at Georgeham are looking at ways to safely hold in person Parish Council meetings and further details will be announced when the arrangements are in place.

Members of the public are requested to send representations in writing for discussion at a future meeting. 

Although the public have the right to attend a Parish Council meeting, due to the restriction in space at Georgeham Village Hall to accommodate nine Councillors, the Clerk, County and District Councillors, it is requested that attendance is kept to a minimum for the time being. 

Thank you for your co-operation. 

Council plants 100 trees at Glebefield

Georgeham Parish Council declared a climate emergency in September 2019. Taking action on this has been held up during the Covid crisis but in September 2020 the council decided to create small community woodland areas on land in its ownership.

The first step was taken at the end of February when a small team of councillors and residents planted 100 native trees on an area of the Glebefield in Georgeham. As the photo shows these trees are now flourishing having survived the dry April weather and recent storms.

There is a mown path through the trees but the rest of the area has been left to encourage more wildflowers and grasses to grow and create a wildlife rich habitat.

While the council is planning further tree planting for the coming winter it owns only a small area of land in the parish so it hopes that this initiative will encourage other people in the parish to plant trees. It is encouraging to note that already at least three landowners have embarked on major tree planting schemes in the parish.

The Parish Council is keen to keep track of new areas of woodland planting and offer advice and support to anyone who wants to start planting trees. To let the council know about your tree planting plans or to seek advice please contact Councillor Jon Gething by email at jongething@mac.com or by phone at 07976 320445.

Cyber Crime Awareness

Cyber crime awareness and Security best practice.

During the pandemic there has been a rise in cyber crime with malicious organisations and individuals taking advantage of the situation. Below you will find guidance on how you can be more aware to protect yourself from:

  • Loss of money giving away credit/debit card data
  • Loss of identity giving away personal information
  • Unknowingly giving away secure data and information of any kind
  • A compromised / hacked computer or email account

Keep alert for Phishing emails

Phishing is the fraudulent practice of sending emails ostensibly from a known or trusted sender in order to obtain sensitive information or data, such as usernames, passwords, credit card details or other sensitive details, by impersonating oneself as a trustworthy entity.

This is particularly on rise during lockdown as more people are ordering products and services online for home delivery. Malicious emails that look like authentic courier branded emails will take advantage of people expecting a delivery under the guise of the order requiring action. Always track your packages and deliveries directly through the official courier website or app to be on the safe side.

The same with banks and building societies as people are actively focused on their spending, accounting and budgets. Banks will never ask for information or actions to me made over email. Likewise HMRC will never request payment or threaten action over email. Be on the lookout for scammers calling or emailing claiming to be HMRC at this time of year when Self Assessments are due.

Similarly many government organisations are understandably issuing updates as a trusted source of information at this time through their websites and emails. Be mindful of imitation .gov.uk addresses in emails that will seek to ask for forms to be filled out or links to be clicked.

Spear Phishing

These are more customised targeted emails that are received from a known person requesting information or an action. This usually occurs if the trusted senders email account has been compromised / hacked OR imitating the emails address only very slightly.

Always double check with a phone call or separate line of communication if a trusted person has sent an email requesting action which seems out of the ordinary or unexpected.

Please see this poster below on what to look out for to avoid being hooked:

View or download poster

Password Best practice

Your best defence against hackers is a strong password but remembering passwords for so many logins and systems is understandably frustrating at times. Below are some tips that should make things a bit easier whilst being more secure:

  1. Pick a sentence you can remember easily. This could be a significant event, a description of your favourite place or a quote from somebody. eg: Laughter is timeless or Toms birthday in Rome
  2. Combine word segments to form a new string. Make sure the string is at least 10 characters long. Combine word endings and beginnings. eg laughteristimeless or tombirthdayrome
  3. Capitalize two or more characters where it makes sense. Pick the “words” that convey your sentence’s core message, eg: LaughterISTimeless or TomBirthDAYRome
  4. Introduce two or more numbers, dots, ampersands or other special characters. Convert letters that into numbers that look the similar, eg: 1aught3rIST!mele55 or T0mB!rthDAYRom3

REMEMBER: Your password’s length is the prime ingredient for security.

What to do in summary

  1. Always double check the sender email address – it can look genuine and only be 1 character different.
  2. Be suspicious of any request to click on a link or send confidential information over email. Double check to be on the safe side.
  3. NEVER make a financial transaction using your card from an email. Double check using a legitimate and trusted method.

A warning about COVID-19 vaccination scams

The launch of the mass vaccination of people in the UK against COVID-19, is being accompanied by a rash of attempts at fraud, as reported by Trading Standards departments around the country.

Exploiting people’s desire to receive the vaccination as soon as possible and, more recently, increased fear of infection in the light of the new, more virulent strain, scammers are using phone calls (both in person and automated) and text messages to offer the chance to ‘jump the queue’. In the most commonly reported cases, the recipient is required to respond by clicking a link in the text message, or pressing 1 on the call.

If you receive an email or phone call from anyone purporting to offer you the vaccine other than the NHS, you should assume it is a scam. In reality, the vaccine is being offered by the NHS to people most at risk from Coronavirus, with groups at lower levels of risk following, and so on. It is being administered in some hospitals and, from last week, hundreds of local vaccination centres run by GPs.

Get more free expert advice on the Get Safe Online website which covers all the major news and developments in cyber crime.

www.getsafeonline.org

Neighbourhood Plan 2021-2031

Have your say

Georgeham Parish Council is launching a public consultation on its draft Neighbourhood Plan. We want to ensure that the contents of the Plan reflect what the local community wants.

This is your opportunity to shape and guide the future of the parish and to ensure that any future development is sensitive to the area’s character and identity, whilst providing for the needs of generations to come.

The consultation runs from Monday 1 February 2021 until Monday 5 April 2021. Copies of the Plan and supporting documents are available to view and download below:

Please email your comments to the Parish Clerk at sue@suesquire.com by Monday 5 April 2021. Or you can submit written comments in the special collection boxes at Croyde and Georgeham post offices.

Previous News Posts:

Vacancy on the Council

There is a vacancy on the Council

APPLICATIONS ARE INVITED FROM PARISHIONERS WHO WISH TO BE CONSIDERED FOR CO-OPTION ON TO THE PARISH COUNCIL.

Please send a letter or email of application to the Clerk by Thursday, 31 December 2020.

Please don’t hand your letter to a Councillor as that would preclude them from the voting process.

Fortnightly meetings are currently being held by Zoom and when restrictions are lifted, will be held every two weeks in Georgeham Village Hall.

The co-option will take place at the Parish Council Meeting on Thursday, 7 January 2021 at 6pm.

Mrs Sue Squire
Parish Clerk, Georgeham Parish Council
Haxlea, 2 Threeways
Bratton Fleming, Barnstaple
EX31 4TG. 01598 710526.
sue@suesquire.com

Download Poster Here

Avian influenza (bird flu): Latest situation

New housing measures will come into force in England, Scotland and Wales on 14 December.

The Chief Veterinary Officers for England, Scotland and Wales have agreed to bring in new measures to help protect poultry and captive birds, following a number of cases of avian influenza in both wild and captive birds in the UK.

Government Chief Veterinary Officers are encouraging bird keepers to use the next 11 days to prepare for new housing measures, including taking steps to safeguard animal welfare, consult their vet and where necessary put up additional housing.

Whether you keep just a few birds as pets or thousands, from 14 December onwards you will be legally required to keep your birds indoors, or take appropriate steps to keep them separate from wild birds. We have not taken this decision lightly, but it is the best way to protect your birds from this highly infectious disease.

Poultry and captive bird keepers are advised to be vigilant for any signs of disease in their birds and any wild birds, and seek prompt advice from their vet if they have any concerns. They can help prevent avian flu by maintaining good biosecurity on their premises, including:

  • housing or netting all poultry and captive birds
  • cleansing and disinfecting clothing, footwear, equipment and vehicles before and after contact with poultry and captive birds – if practical, use disposable protective clothing
  • reducing the movement of people, vehicles or equipment to and from areas where poultry and captive birds are kept, to minimise contamination from manure, slurry and other products, and using effective vermin control
  • thoroughly cleaning and disinfecting housing at the end of a production cycle
  • keeping fresh disinfectant at the right concentration at all points where people should use it, such as farm entrances and before entering poultry and captive bird housing or enclosures
  • minimising direct and indirect contact between poultry and captive birds and wild birds, including making sure all feed and water is not accessible to wild birds

Register your birds

We encourage all keepers to register their birds with us so we can contact you quickly if there is a disease outbreak in your area and you need to take action.
If you have more than 50 birds, you are legally required to register your flock within one month of their arrival at your premises. If you have less than 50 birds, including pet birds, you are still strongly encouraged to register.

Find out how to register your birds.

Poultry and captive bird keepers and members of the public should report dead wild birds to the Defra helpline on 03459 33 55 77 (option 7), and keepers should report suspicion of disease to APHA on 03000 200 301. Keepers should familiarise themselves with our avian flu advice.

Public Health England advise the risk to public health from the H5N8 and H5N2 strains of bird flu is very low.

The Food Standards Agency has said that on the basis of the current scientific evidence, avian influenza poses a very low food safety risk for UK consumers. Properly cooked poultry and poultry products, including eggs, are safe to eat.

NOTICE OF VACANCY IN OFFICE OF COUNCILLOR

NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN

that due to the resignation of Cllr Pat Barker, a vacancy has arisen in the Office of Councillor for the Parish Council.

If by 10 December 2020 (14 days excluding Dies Non, after the date of this notice) a request for an election to fill said vacancy is made in writing to the Returning Officer at the address below by TEN electors for the said Parish, an election will be held to fill the said vacancy, otherwise the vacancy will be filled by co-option.

If an election is called, it will take place on Thurday 6th May, 2021.

Dated 20 November, 2020

Ken Miles
Acting Returning Officer
Lynton House
Commercial Road
Barnstaple
Devon
EX31 1DG

Further information on what is required of a councillor and the work involved can be found in this related article HERE