Some local (and otherwise) news


News courtesy of Kevin Foster

(MP for Torbay)
Any views expressed in this news post are those of Kevin Foster, unless stated otherwise.

Digital Radio Bill Passed

Kevin Foster’s Private Members’ Small-Scale DAB Bill received Royal Assent to pass into law as an Act of Parliament yesterday, thereby providing the means for a huge expansion of local and community stations on DAB.

The Bill, officially known as the Broadcasting (Radio Multiplex Services) Bill 2016-17, is believed to be the first Private Members’ Broadcasting Bill to receive Royal Assent, and makes provision for the regulation of small-scale DAB multiplex services. Some industry observers predict this could prompt an increase of over 1000 new commercial and community stations across the UK.

Kevin said: “I introduced this bill into Parliament because I strongly supported the need for ultra-local commercial and community radio stations to have a path to DAB. I am therefore delighted that with Royal Assent the Bill has now become law. It being passed in Norman French is perhaps a symbol of how it will allow the tradition of excellence in British local radio to continue and thrive on this most modern of platforms.
I cannot wait to hear some of the new listening choices this bill will bring to digital radio listeners across the country and here in the bay.”

Work Continues on 65 Service

Over recent months we have been covering efforts to reinstate bus services lost when the previous operator Local Link decided to cease all its scheduled bus services in early April.

Whilst many new services were put in place to preserved the former routes some were left out, notably including the 65 and 67.

Yesterday a brief update on work to reinstate a 65 service was given at the Wellswood & Torwood CP by a representative of the Torbay Community Development Trust, the group which launched the Community Bus to replace the 60/61. Whilst no specific details were given it is clear that work is progressing on the 65 route and we will include any further news in future updates.

Young Farmers

The Young Farmers made a big impression on our area last week as approximately 5,500 of them visited Torquay for their Annual Convention.

There were several reports of bars being drunk dry by thirsty revellers and the large inflatables of a cow and pig outside SOHO Bar were certainly eye catching.

Yet despite all the revelry and excitement one fact I was very pleased to hear was that Torquay Police did not have to make a single arrest of any Young Farmer visiting the bay. A contrast to other times of the year when those drinking to excess sadly take out their aggression against our Police or others out on the town.

One bizarre story that has circulated on social media is that this would be the last Young Farmers gathering in the bay as they had been “banned” by the Council. This was fake news and the Council has issued a statement rebutting it. You can read the Mayor’s comments by clicking here.

The Young Farmers will be in Blackpool for their next two conventions, but will hopefully be back in the bay in 2020.

Crossways Redevelopment Takes A Step Forward

When Torbay residents are asked to name which buildings they least like in our area Crossways Shopping Centre is likely to get a mention.

It is safe to say the centre has seen much better days and apart from a few dedicated local businesses the centre is now virtually empty. The car park above it has also been the source of many complaints due to the enforcement regime used in it. Now there is news that plans for its rejuvenation could soon be submitted to the council.

The centre was seen as state of the art when it opened in the 1960’s and even in the late 1990’s there was still a reasonable number there. It now needs urgent attention and if this latest plan comes to nothing the council should look at its compulsory purchase powers to finally move things along.

You can read the details that are available about the suggested scheme on the Devon Live website by clicking here.

Threat to Torbay Tourism Signs

Residents may have heard a Devon County Councillor on the radio this week calling for Torbay’s Tourism Signs to be removed from roads leading to the bay as part of a dispute over signs to a pub in his ward.

The majority group on Devon County Council rejected this Councillor’s demand.

You can read more on the Devon Live website by clicking here.

New Homes Funding

Torbay Council and TDA have secured £179,000 from the Homes and Communities Agency (HCA) to accelerate the delivery of new homes in Torbay.

The Accelerated project, which will be delivered by Torbay Council’s Development Management Team and TDA’s Regeneration Team, working closely with landowners and developers, will help realise plans for an urban extension to Torquay Gateway and additional homes in all three town centres.

Development of the sites included in the project will see the delivery of 1770 new homes, of which around 550 will be at Torquay Gateway and over 1100 within town centres. The funding will result in the delivery of around 600 more homes than would be delivered without the funding support, effectively doubling the rate of delivery.

Shingles Vaccination

Local public health chiefs are highlighting a vaccine that is available to the over 70’s to prevent Shingles.

Shingles is an infection of a nerve and the area of skin around it. It is caused by the herpes varicella-zoster virus, which also causes chickenpox. Following chickenpox infection, the virus can lie dormant in the nervous tissue but may reappear following reactivation as shingles. It is possible to have shingles more than once.

Vaccinations start from 70 years of age. The shingles vaccination programme started in September 2013. To see if you are eligible click here.

The shingles vaccine is given as a single injection into the upper arm. Unlike the flu jab, you only need to have the vaccination once and you can have it at any time of the year.

Got an Old Fiver In Your Wallet?

If you have an old paper fiver tucked away in your wallet or purse you have only a few days left to spend it in the shops.

The paper fiver ceases to be legal tender on Friday 5th May and will no longer be accepted in shops after that date. After that you will need to take any old fivers you find to a bank for them to be paid in or exchanged for notes\coins that are legal tender.

For those wondering Bank of England notes never lose their face value, although older ones would need to be presented to the Bank itself for exchange into modern currency.

Time To Hit The Gym

We have probably all thought that we could do with getting down the Gym for a session, yet feel a bit too tired at the end of a long day to do so.

If that is the case then a new class that might be introduced across one nationwide chain of gyms might be for you.

Gym company David Lloyd has come up with “Napercise”. The 60 minute class promises to provide 45 minutes of uninterrupted sleep, complete with a bed, duvet and eye mask. Starting and finishing with a series of tension-releasing stretches, the aim of the wellbeing class is to help reduce stress levels. That’s right this class involves nothing more strenuous than a stretch before you hit the hay, not the weights.

Being April I checked the date on the article but you can read it for yourself on the Daily Telegraph website by clicking here.


Powerboat and Water Ski Racing – Aqua Adrenaline
28th April-1st May – Beacon Quay, Torquay, TQ1 2BG
Cost – Free to watch

Food and Craft Market
30th April – Cockington Court, Cockington Lane, Torquay, TQ2 6XA
Time – 10:00-16:00
Cost – Free to attend

Arts and Craft Market
29th April-1st May – Princess Gardens, Torbay Road, Torquay, TQ2 5EZ
Cost – Free to attend
Click here for more information

Torbay & South West Music Festival – Choirs Evening
5th May – Palace Theatre, Palace Avenue, Paignton, TQ3 3HF
Cost – £5 per ticket
Time – 19:00-21:00
Click here for more information


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