Council Leader Cllr Tim Warren with Australian Rugby Captain Stephen Moore

Last night I was lucky enough to attend the official Welcome Ceremony for the Australian Rugby Team at The Assembly Rooms. Bath is hosting the team during the World Cup 2015. It was a fantastic and well organised event that created a great atmosphere for the start of the Rugby World Cup. As a rugby fan it was a real honour to meet the team, including the Captain Stephen Moore, who I presented with a gift on behalf of the Council. I must admit I can’t wait for the tournament to begin later this week!

At last week’s Cabinet meeting we discussed the issue of amplified busking in the city centre. We considered the very many responses to a public consultation on this and have decided, for now, to use the legislation we already have to target individuals causing problems, rather than put in an outright ban. We will, however, be keeping an eye on this and will reconsider if there are further problems.

At Cabinet we also agreed on a public consultation about how health and care services should be delivered in our communities. The your care, your way review is being carried out jointly by the Council and NHS Bath and North East Somerset Clinical Commissioning Group. Please take a look at the proposals and share your views by October 30th.

I was delighted that Cabinet, and then full Council, agreed to apply for Firs Field in Combe Down to be protected through the Centenary Fields programme. This is a great initiative which aims to protect and preserve war memorial fields, parks and green spaces with significance to World War I.  I think this would be a fitting way to remember those who gave their lives in the Great War, including Harry Patch, known as the ‘Last fighting Tommy’, who grew up in Combe Down.

On Monday, six new designs for a new bridge across the River Avon were unveiled.  The council held an international design competition and the finalists are quite spectacular. You can see them and vote for your favourite here or at the One Stop Shop, Manvers Street until September 24th.  

Bath Quays Bridge Designs

Good news yesterday that the Roman Baths has been recognized in the 2015 TripAdvisor Travellers’ Choice awards. It was named 5th best-rated museum in the UK, making it the most popular paid-for attraction in the country, and the only museum outside London to appear in the top five. Congratulations to the team!

Later today I will be attending the Honorary Aldermen and women ceremony where we will be recognising the contribution of seven councillors and also giving a posthumous award to the family of Cllr David Bellotti.

On Saturday I’m going to the official unveiling of Keynsham’s new clock tower. It’s been designed by artist Sebastien Boyesen, and we’ve worked very closely with Keynsham Town Council and the local community on this project. 

Later that day the first public consultation meeting about a new Park and Ride site to the east of Bath takes place at Bathampton Village Hall; there’s another meeting at The Guildhall on Tuesday 22nd and at Batheaston on Tuesday 29th. Please do try to have a look at the plans and give us your views – if you can’t make a meeting, all the information can be found on the  Park and Ride proposal page.

Finally we’ve news that the new Bath City Forum will meet for the first time on Tuesday October 13th, at The Guildhall. The Forum is looking to co-opt up to 13 members from across the city. If you’re interested you can view the Bath City Forum page on the Council website.