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Full Council to be asked to adopt Local Plan after green light from Planning Inspector

An independent Planning Inspector has given the green light for the Royal Borough to adopt a key planning document guiding and supporting future development, regeneration and investment in the area.

The Borough Local Plan sets out the vision for future development of the Royal Borough up to 2033, including how many new homes are needed, how much space for jobs is required, the best locations for new development and, just as crucially, where development cannot happen. The plan ensures that new housing and other development is well designed and meets local needs, happens in the right places and is supported by suitable infrastructure.

This process also included a full public examination by an independent Government-appointed Planning Inspector, Mrs Louise Phillips. Public consultation took place last summer on the proposed main modifications that she advised were necessary to make the plan sound.

Having considered all responses, Mrs Phillips issued her independent report advising the plan is sound (subject to inclusion of main modifications) and therefore capable of adoption. Her report is available on the council website. Full Council will be recommended to formally adopt the plan at an extraordinary meeting on Tuesday 8 February at the Holiday Inn.

For more information, please read the press release and read our FAQ.
Last chance to take part in our budget consultation

Residents, community groups and businesses have until next Monday (31 January) to take part in the consultation on our proposed budget. Thank you to all those who have already taken part. 

This proposed budget for 2022/23 is an investment budget that looks to support our most vulnerable residents while ensuring we continue to provide high quality services for all.

To take part in the consultation, which started in early December, visit the RBWM Together website. Responses will help to inform discussions when the draft budget is debated at Full Council on Tuesday 22 February.  

More information is available in our press release.
Additional Restrictions Grants for eligible businesses severely impacted by Omicron

We have opened applications to Covid grants funding for eligible businesses that were severely impacted by the Omicron outbreak, though not entitled to the Omicron Hospitality and Leisure Grant.
We are offering one-off grants from the Government of either £2,667, £4,000 or £6,000, depending on the rateable value of their trading premises, to help eligible rate-paying businesses in specific hard-hit sectors.

Businesses are encouraged to apply early with the full evidence required. Grants will be awarded on a first-come-first-served basis, and therefore may not be awarded where funding has been exhausted prior to the closing date.

Applications must be made by Thursday 31 March 2022. To see full eligibility criteria, check exemptions, and apply, visit our website.

To learn more, read our press release.
Final reminder to complete Defra’s bird flu survey and help protect our feathered friends

Bird flu cases have unfortunately been found locally and to help reduce spread Defra has established a temporary disease control zone covering 3km (1.86 miles) in all directions from the Thames at Eton, where infected swans were recently identified.

If you keep birds of any number, species or breed within the zone - either at your home, garden, dovecote, allotment, smallholding or farm – please complete this short survey by the end of this week to play your part in helping protect local wildfowl, poultry farms and your own birds. Thank you to everyone who has already done the survey.

When cases are identified, part of effective disease control is to build a clear local picture of where birds are kept, how many and which species. Survey responses will allow Defra vets to offer advice and undertake checks with those bird keepers at higher risk, and ultimately lift the zone once they’re confident the disease is under control locally.
Book a place on our free online course to support start-ups

The Royal Borough is working with the Rebel Business School to provide free online classes for budding entrepreneurs in the borough looking to start or grow their own business.

The sessions, which run on weekdays from 10am to 3pm from Monday 7 to Friday 18 February, are designed to inspire and help residents find the confidence to try their business ideas.

This course is for all budding entrepreneurs, from those with no cash and no business experience, to fledgling start-ups that need guidance to keep on track.

To learn more, and book your place, visit the Rebel Business School website.

Further information is available in our press release.
Updates to the Highway Code - making our roads safer for everyone

The Highway Code, which sets out advice, guidance, and rules for British road users, is being updated to reduce risk to vulnerable users such as pedestrians, cyclists, and horse riders.

The updates include:

  • Drivers at a junction should give way to pedestrians crossing or waiting to cross a road that they’re turning into
  • Drivers should not cut across cyclists going ahead when turning into or out of a junction or changing direction or lane
  • Cyclists should give way to pedestrians that are using shared-use cycle tracks.

The upcoming changes to the Highway Code align with our aims to improve active travel across the borough as discussed during our Big Conversation last summer.

The schemes that will come out of our upcoming Local Cycling and Walking Infrastructure Plan will build on these changes to achieve our objectives an increased uptake of walking and cycling in the borough.

Visit the Government website to learn more about the Highway Code. There is also a table of code changes available online.
Don’t make resolutions, make habits

Our January communications campaign is now in its final week, with a focus on our local mental health services and ways that everyone can look after their mental health.

We are encouraging everyone to speak about their mental health challenges with their friends and family, directing them to the support available from the Mind charity.

We are also promoting Frimley Health and Care’s ‘helping you to stay well guide’ which includes mental health advice, guidance for carers, and an overview of which NHS services people can go to if they are unwell. We are also sharing Frimley’s Little Blue Book of Sunshine, which is a great resource full of reliable, professional mental health guidance for children.

Make sure you follow us on Facebook and Twitter to keep up to date with the campaign.
Take the survey to help shape your local pharmacy services

On behalf of Berkshire’s six local authorities, Healthy Dialogues is writing a Pharmaceutical Needs Assessment (PNA) looking at people’s health needs across the area.

As part of this, they’re inviting everyone to share their views – via an online survey - about how you use your local pharmacy. Participants won’t be identified in any reporting. 

You have until Monday 28 February to take part.
New support group for parents and carers

Are you a parent/carer of an adult with learning disabilities?

Would you like to meet others like you for friendship & support in a safe environment?

The Learning Disability Partnership Board’s new Parent/Carer Support Group can do just that.

Meetings are held monthly on Zoom, from 12.30 to 1.30pm. The next one is on Wednesday 9 February.

For more details email Caroline Waites.
Royal Borough community spotlight

Here are just some of the upcoming community events in the Royal Borough:

  • Uncover six million years of human history (St Mark's Methodist Church, Maidenhead) – Starting Thursday 3 March. The five-week Aspects of Prehistory course will look at periods of human history from the Stone Age to the Iron Age. Attendees will also get the opportunity to handle a variety of historic artefacts. For more details, visit the Workers’ Educational Association website or email Steph Diggon if you are interested in signing up

  • Spring concert - (7.30pm Saturday 5 March) - St Mary’s Church, Maidenhead. The Windsor and Maidenhead Symphony Orchestra (WMSO) will be performing a selection of pieces by Walton, Beethoven, and Tchaikovsky for their spring 2022 concert. Book your tickets and find out more on the WMSO website

If you have an upcoming not-for-profit community event or activity you’d like to promote in this newsletter simply send basic information about your event to and it could be shared with over 19,000 local residents.

You just need to include a brief description, when and where it takes place, and a link to a website/social media page/contact where people can find out more.
Have your say

We regularly hold consultations to get your views on proposals within the Royal Borough.

Responding to our consultations and giving your feedback is the best way to ensure your views are heard.

Our current consultations are:

More information can be found on the consultations pages of our website. 
M4 closures

The M4 is due to be closed in both directions between Junctions 5 (Langley) and 6 (Slough-Windsor) from 8pm today until 6am on Monday 31 January.

The M4 is also due to be closed in both directions between Junctions 6 (Slough-Windsor) and 8/9 (Maidenhead) from 8pm on Friday 4 February to 6am on Monday 7 February.

Visit the Highways England website for more details on the M4 smart motorway scheme.

For details of council works on highways, visit our website. For full local roadwork details, including work by utility firms, please visit the One Network website.
Keep in touch

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