Coventry Solihull Warwickshire (CSW) Broadband Consultation

The CSW Broadband project is about to go out to tender for the next stage of the project and is asking members of the public to tell them if they live in an area that should be receiving superfast broadband from a commercial provider, but for some reason it is not available to them.

There may be a number of reasons why a property may not get superfast broadband whilst others in the area can, including being connected directly to the exchange or being some distance away from the upgraded green cabinet.

Councillor Alan Cockburn, Deputy Leader of Warwickshire County Council, said: “We have a further £7.68m to take the fibre network further, but can only use public funding for places which will not receive Superfast Broadband as a result of earlier rollout i.e. installed by a supplier in the normal course of their business, or through the first CSW Broadband project. Now that we have the funding and are planning the second stage of our rollout, we need to confirm which areas are eligible for our assistance – and this is where we need help from members of the public.

“We have been told by the broadband providers where they will be offering superfast broadband services up to 2017 and these, together with the coverage from the first phase of the CSW Broadband project, have been shaded grey or black on the new maps on our website. However we believe that not every area that is coloured grey or black will actually be able to achieve superfast speeds, and we need to know about them, otherwise we may not be able to run our network into those areas. We do need to hear from everyone, even if they have responded to previous broadband consultations as the mapping is very different from what has gone before.”

State Aid rules from Europe mean that the CSW Broadband project is not able to spend public money to intervene in an area where there is to be commercial provision. Therefore if an area is wrongly identified as receiving commercial superfast broadband when in fact it will not be delivered then that area will be left out of the tender process and may be disadvantaged.

The CSW broadband project will be going out to tender in the autumn to expand the fibre broadband network. The project has £3.68m from Government through BDUK, and £3.68m from Warwickshire County Council to take superfast broadband coverage up to 95% by the end of 2017. A further £6m is available form BDUK for which match funding must be found, and the CSW Broadband team are working with partners and others to secure this.

The current CSW Broadband contract has so far installed 58 new fibre-enabled cabinets so that over 12,500 properties can now connect to the fibre network. Nationally one million properties have now been upgraded through the Government-funded BDUK project.

The public consultation runs until 18th September and details can be found at:  www.cswbroadband.org.uk/consultation

If you want to go straight to the survey and respond as a resident, you can do so here

If you want to go straight to the survey and respond as a business, you can do so here

Nuneaton & Bedworth’s Big Survey is back!

ConsultationThe Big Survey is back! So why not have your say and help to shape the priorities of Nuneaton & Bedworth Borough Council over the next 12 months? In previous Big Surveys residents of the Borough have proven eager to share their thoughts on life in Nuneaton and Bedworth on issues ranging from crime levels to services provided by local authorities.

The Big Survey is an annual event and a paper copy is included as a pull-out in the current edition of In Touch or, can be completed online.  Anyone who takes part will be automatically entered into a draw to win either a prize of £30 of shopping vouchers for first place or £20 of shopping vouchers for second place.

This is your chance to make your feelings known to management and Councillors at the Town Hall so please take the time to take part.  Paper copies are also available from the Town Hall in Nuneaton or Bedworth Area Office.

The deadline for submissions is October 4th 2013, complete the survey here alternatively let us know your views below.

What is living in Warwickshire like?………What do you like and dislike about living in Warwickshire?

Consultation

Reminder *only two weeks left to let us know your views*

Warwickshire County Council and Warwickshire’s Health and Wellbeing Board are carrying out a ‘Living in Warwickshire’ survey to find out views on what people like and don’t like about living in Warwickshire, what things need improving and health and wellbeing issues.  The ‘Living in Warwickshire’ survey has been sent to a random selection of households across the county.

If you have received a survey please take 10 minutes to fill it in and send it back before the 10th October and you will be entered into a draw to win one of ten £25 healthy food vouchers donated by Sainsburys.

If you haven’t received a survey – don’t worry,  we are encouraging you to have you say below.

Let us know, by commenting below what you like and dislike about living in Warwickshire, hopefully this will generate some interesting discussions!

The deadline for comments is the 10th October 2013.

Environmental ‘Crowdsourcing’ – Improving the Leam Catchment Area

One of the ways in which we hope to use the Ask Warwickshire site is to provide opportunities for residents to help us and partner agencies gather data.  The process of getting residents to work collectively to help generate intelligence about a particular issue is called crowdsourcing.  By getting interested parties and volunteers to contribute information, we can develop a much more comprehensive picture and save huge amounts of time, getting projects completed more quickly.  It also provides residents with a direct opportunity to help inform and shape a project.

To illustrate this idea, we would like to draw your attention to the Leam Catchment Pilot being managed by the Environment Agency with partnership support.  The project is asking residents to report concerns about their local environment, within the River Leam catchment area.  There are several ways to get involved. You can click on a map and record a concern (points can be annotated with information and photographs), complete an online form, send an email or using Twitter.  All the information gathered will help plan environmental improvement projects in the area.

As the website explains, the work undertaken so far by the Environment Agency and partners has “focussed on the collation of data and knowledge held internally.  Now we need to spread our search to include the knowledge and expertise of those who know the catchment best – those who live, work and/or visit the catchment.  The aim of this website is to start that involvement.”

Please take a look at the project’s website and see if it is something you can get involved in. Let us know what you think about this way of collecting data.

How Happy Are You?

ConversationWe were quite surprised to see the results of a recent Office for National Statistics survey that suggested residents of Warwickshire are, generally, less happy and satisfied with life than the national average.  More than 700 residents from Warwickshire took part in the survey, where people were asked to rate issues such as life satisfaction, happiness and anxiety on a scale of 1 to 10.  The results are presented below, where you can see that the average score for Warwickshire citizens was 7.24 for ‘life satisfaction’, compared to 7.41 across the UK as a whole (click on the chart to see the detail more clearly).

This is the first time these questions have been asked in a national survey.  We have a wide range of data on some of the factors that you might assume contribute towards happiness; unemployment, health, crime and education, but limited knowledge on how these things impact upon well-being. The Office for National Statistics was asked by the Prime Minister David Cameron last November to find out – or at least to work out how to find out!

We would like to improve our understanding of this subject and hope you can get involved in two ways.  First, you can take our version of the survey itself; this just asks the identical questions to the national survey, but will help build up a greater knowledge of results more locally.  Secondly, we’d like to start a conversation on this topic through this website.  You will see at the foot of the page there is an opportunity to add comments.  Why do you think Warwickshire’s results are lower than the national average? Are you surprised by the results? Are the questions helpful? How could the information be used to improve things?

Take the survey here.  We will publish the aggregated results once we have enough respondents.

For more information on some of the underlying factors that might impact on well-being, take a look at our Quality of Life in Warwickshire Report.

Please share this with other residents of Warwickshire – the more responses we get the more representative the information will be!