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The ‘Connecting Communities’ programme is an initiative designed to help public service providers listen to, and meet the needs of, all the diverse people and communities who live in the area.  The approach has been built around five key principles: ‘listen, prioritise, join-up, work with you and share ideas’. This initiative has come at the right time.  Getting the input of local people in order to design the right services is seen as increasingly important.  And as there is now much less public funding available, local people and neighbourhoods are being asked to help run services too.  Each area will be supported by a local ‘Forum’ that will work together to improve local engagement between the public services and the local communities and encouraging local people to talk to each other, share their skills and ideas. You are able to view the area profile for the Somer Valley on this page.  All the Connecting Communities Forums are open to the public.

The Somer Valley Area Forum meeting dates

Key Positions and People involved with Somer Valley Area Forum. 

B&NES Sponsor B&NES Vice Sponsor B&NES Lead Officers Forum Chair Forum Vice Chairs
Andrew Pate Richard Baldwin Sara Dixon and Alison Wells Lynda Robertson Karen Walker  

Somer Valley Forum Meetings

Wednesday 29th November at 6pm, Midsomer Norton Town Hall, The Island, Midsomer Norton BA3 2HQ

The main topic of the meeting was the Council's Budget.  The presentation given at the meeting can be downloaded here.

Tuesday 19th September at 6pm, Swallow Cafe, St Nicholas Church Centre, Church Street, Radstock BA3 3QG

We were delighted to be welcomed to Swallow Community Cafe for this meeting.  This is staffed by local people with learning disabilities, both in the kitchen and front of house, allowing them to gain useful work skills and experience whilst participating in meaningful work that benefits the local community.  The main theme of the meeting was Housing and we were pleased to hear from Chief Executive of Swallow, Bev Craney and some of the service users on their supported housing in the area.  To achieve this, they have worked in partnership with the Council's Housing Service and Gary Ward, Senior Enabling and Development Officer, spoke about how they work with local organisations and developers to secure affordable housing.  Another partner is Julian House and the Forum heard from their Assertive Outreach Worker, Jamie Tutton, on their work with the homeless in Bath and the Somer Valley.  He also spoke about sofa-surfing amongst young people, which was raised by the Forum as a concern.  The meeting also included an update on the Somer Valley Transport Strategy and Somer Valley Enterprise Zone.  A copy of the presentations can be downloaded from the links on the right.

Tuesday 11th July at 6pm, Conygre Hall, North Road, Timsbury BA2 0JQ

The main theme for the meeting was health and wellbeing.  We were delighted to welcome the CCG and the Virgin Care and Health Team, Denise Perrin from the Village Agents talking about their new project ‘Rural links’ with St Monica’s Trust and Sophie Kirk from the Council's Sustainability Team to talk about the Sugar Smart Campaign.  There was also a presentation from Leonard Cheshire Homes about their Boccia and Fishing activities.  A copy of the presentations can be downloaded from the links on the right.

27th March 2017 at 6pm, Victoria Hall, Church Street, Radstock BA3 3QG

The main theme of the meeting was "Community Resilience: Managing Flood Risk".  Jim McEwen and Jim Collings from Bath & North East Somerset Council and Jody Grabham from the Environment Agency gave a presentation on their roles and the importance of local knowledge and community involvement.  In addition, Jon Poole from B&NES Research and Intelligence Team talked about the Government Boundary Reviews taking place.  A copy of the presentations can be downloaded from the links on the right.

Forum AGM - 22nd February 2017, The Centurion Hotel, Charlton Lane, Midsomer Norton BA3 4BD

The theme of the AGM was ‘Our Heritage and Local Tourism’ and the Forum welcomed three speakers, Nick Hall, Chair of Radstock Museum, David James, Chief Executive of Bath Tourism Plus and Tina Veater, Chief Executive of Ignyte Ltd and Chair of the Somer Valley Chamber of Commerce.  A copy of the presentations can be downloaded from the links on the right.  Also view Bath Tourism Plus promotion videos

Annual report 2016

During the year the Forum had a varied programme of presentations and discussions, including the CCG ‘your care, your way’, the West of England Joint Spatial Plan, Somer Valley Enterprise Zone and Early Years’ Services in the Somer Valley. They were delighted to have two Forum meetings hosted by the communities of Midsomer Norton and Westfield. Their presentations gave a insight into some of their key projects.  The Annual Report provides an update on the Forum’s achievements to date and planned actions for 2017.

The Annual Report provides an update on the Forum’s achievements to date and planned actions for 2017.

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