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District Dispatch - 10 May 2023

Last week, the Chichester District and Parish Elections took place. This resulted in 25 Liberal Democrat, five Conservative, four Local Alliance, and two Green Party councillors being elected.

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I would like to congratulate all of the elected councillors and look forward to working with them over the next four years.

On 17 May, we will hold the first annual council meeting. At this point, the new Leader and the new Chairman will be chosen. The new Leader will then announce the new Cabinet. The new Leader will shortly take over this column to help keep you informed of our work during the months and years ahead.

Running an election is a huge operation and is reliant upon the assistance of hundreds of people — both staff members and volunteers from our communities. I would like to thank every person who contributed to this process. Without your involvement it would not be possible. You can find out the full results on our election results webpage.

I also hoped you managed to enjoy the many celebrations that took place over the weekend to mark the coronation of King Charles III and enjoyed the extended weekend. It was great to see so many communities and neighbourhoods coming together to celebrate this historic occasion.

Work is continuing at pace to support businesses and the community in Midhurst following the fire in North Street. A couple of weeks ago, along with another senior colleague, I met with Government officials to lobby them for funding support for Midhurst businesses. Although no official funding sources are currently available, Government officials have said that they will look into this further and come back to the council. If you own a Midhurst town centre business and have not yet applied for one of our grants, please visit our article on the grant scheme launched for Midhurst town centre businesses for the full details or email: 

At the end of last week, The South Downs National Park Authority (SDNPA) advised that an Urgent Works Notice has been issued to the owners of the properties affected by the fire. This is legally required to allow work to begin on site. SDNPA is using emergency powers and working with West Sussex County Council and Chichester District Council, to get the listed buildings safely and legally secured to enable North Street to be reopened to vehicles. The procurement process to appoint a contractor is nearing completion and an announcement is expected this week setting out a timetable for the works.

We are constantly updating the Frequently Asked Questions regarding the incident and so I would encourage you to refer to these, and the latest updates, on our website through our latest news column.

We are currently reviewing the dog control rules that apply to public spaces within the Chichester District and are asking people to give their views in a public consultation, which has started this week.

Rules around dog fouling, dog exclusion areas, and areas in which dogs must be put on a lead when directed, are all outlined in a Public Space Protection Order. This is in place to help ensure everyone can enjoy the many beautiful open spaces and beaches we have in the district and to help protect wildlife. We're proposing that the current Public Space Protection Order, which is due to end in October this year, should continue for a further three years.

This consultation is a chance for people — residents, business owners, organisations and visitors — to share their thoughts on our proposal, and we are keen to hear a wide range of views from as many people as possible. It takes 5-10 minutes to complete our quick survey, and people can choose to respond to the aspects that interest them.

You can take part in the consultation via our&nbsp until 5pm on 7 June 2023. People can request a paper copy of the questionnaire by emailing:

Best Wishes

Diane Shepherd

Chief Executive at Chichester District Council

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