District Dispatch - 28 June 2023
We all understand how challenging it has been for Midhurst residents and businesses since the fire in March, so it is such good news that the road through the town has now been reopened to vehicles. Let's all think about how we can support Midhurst over the coming weeks.
What I want to assure you of is that all of the agencies involved in the recovery process have been working incredibly hard to resolve this very complex situation as soon as they could. The contractors who have been shoring up the buildings have completed the work ahead of schedule, which is really positive. Now that this vital work has been completed, we need to look forward and help the town to recover.
Members of our Economic Development team continue to work with local business to provide positive support and work with them on their recovery plans. As you know, we set aside £300,000 to help the businesses get back on their feet. Out of this amount, £200,000 is being used for business grants and I'm pleased to say as of the end of last week, 59 of these have already been approved. It's not too late to apply so please do get your applications in. If you are a Midhurst business and want to find out more, please email email@example.com
The Town Team, which is made up of local businesses, have also been given £50,000 to support promotion in the town. This is addition to the £10,900 that had been already handed over for marketing purposes. We are also working with Midhurst Town Council to develop a number of events over the coming months, which will help to attract more people to visit the town. Our council is committed to supporting Midhurst over the coming months.
Aside from this funding, we have also sponsored a marketing package with the Observer series to promote the town not only within our local papers, but also within those outside of the area. This appeared in print last week and is online.
We can all play our part by supporting the local businesses wherever we possibly can. Midhurst has so much to offer, so please consider visiting and shopping in the town. There are lots of events already scheduled for the summer — find out more on Visit Midhurst's website.
In other news, the council has been continuing to work with the other districts and borough councils in West Sussex and government agencies, to crack down on fly tipping. In February, the council joined Sussex Police, His Majesty's Revenue and Customs, the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency and the Environment Agency, to stop and check commercial vehicles that were potentially carrying waste. Within a two-hour period, 40 vehicles were stopped and checked - from small vans to flatbed lorries and skip lorries. Using the powers from all five agencies, action was taken to make sure that commercial operators were legally operating and disposing of waste responsibly. Two businesses not registered to carry waste were told to register as Licensed Waste Carriers within 10 days or face fines of up to £3,000. Fourteen Duty of Care inspections were carried out to check where waste materials had come from, where it was being disposed of, and check the accompanying documentation. Six vehicles were given advisories regarding load limits and lights. One vehicle tested positive for contaminated fuel and a further vehicle was seized for not having insurance. A driver was also warned about having an illegal number plate; and another vehicle owner was issued with a summons for having no insurance.
These joint action days aim to disrupt the activities of those looking to fly tip materials in our beautiful district and to ensure that potential fly tippers know that there will be consequences, for information you can visit West Sussex County Council's page on working to scrap fly-tipping. You can report fly tipping using our eform.
Cllr Adrian Moss
Leader of Chichester District Council