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Royal Borough set to improve park tennis courts thanks to potential investment from LTA and Government

We are set to modernise tennis courts at four parks in Windsor & Maidenhead as part of improving health and fitness facilities and opportunities for residents, thanks to potential significant investment from the
Government and the LTA, the national governing body for tennis in Britain.

The investment, which is subject to site surveys and final contract, will be used to upgrade ten hard surface courts where there is identified demand and potential for improvement. These are the three dedicated tennis courts at Maidenhead’s Kidwells Park, two at Desborough Park, two at Oaken Grove, and three at Goswells Park/Alexandra Gardens in Windsor.   

Learn more in our press release.
Free summer swimming sessions for teenagers to support water safety

This summer, in collaboration with the Royal Borough, Baylis Trust and the emergency services, Leisure Focus will be offering free access to swimming sessions for 13- to 17-year-olds to support water safety.

The initiative aims to reduce the risk of young people choosing to swim in open water and sadly getting into trouble.

The sessions will be available Monday to Friday, and will take place from Monday 25 July until Friday 2 September.

There is no need to book in advance, the sessions will take place at:

  • Braywick Leisure Centre: Monday to Friday, 11am to 12pm
  • Windsor Leisure Centre (fitness pool): Monday to Friday, 12.15pm to 1.15pm
  • Windsor Leisure Centre (leisure pool): Every Tuesday 7pm to 8pm

We want everyone to stay safe around water. We work with our partners to raise awareness and highlight the risks, including visits to schools to talk about cold water shock, submerged hazards and the lifesaving ‘float to live’ advice.

We also have additional safety and warning signs at key locations along the Thames, and our Community Wardens are doing routine patrols along the river to check buoyancy aids and speak with anyone in the water about water safety.
Community Wardens join national campaign tackling anti-social behaviour

Our Community Wardens have joined a national campaign to help tackle anti-social behaviour (ASB) and keep people safe.

Running from 18 to 22 July, ASB Awareness Week 2022 aims to encourage communities to take a stand against ASB and highlight the actions that can be taken by those experiencing it.

To support the campaign, our Community Wardens have been conducting a concerted week of community engagement stands, scam and cyber awareness talks, enforcement operations and extra patrols in parks and open spaces.

Our wardens have also conducted targeted dog-fouling patrols and joint activities with police, in addition to their usual patrols. To contact the wardens, email or call 01628 685636.

Learn more in our press release.
Caring for the carers in our communities

As part of our Caring Communities communications campaign, we’re highlighting some of the support available to those many residents in our community who kindly provide unpaid care for family, friends and neighbours.

The Support for Carers Service, provided through Optalis in partnership with the Royal Borough and NHS Frimley, supports carers to continue with their important caring role. Carers Social Care Practitioner, Dulsey Tapera (pictured) is based within the Optalis First Contact Team and explains more about the service.

What is your role?

As a Carers Social Care Practitioner, my role is to identify, facilitate services, and provide support to carers through offering and carrying out assessments and reviews as well as making referrals to relevant services and support groups. I work collaboratively with other partners to meet the needs of carers. All unpaid carers are entitled to an assessment.

One of the aims of this role is to ensure that there is regular contact with carers. I have created a carers register and the plan is to engage both registered and unregistered carers and to get feedback from them on the support they need and on how much contact they would want from social services. Their feedback will be used to determine how we can improve service delivery.

What challenges do carers face and how can you help them?

Some carers do not identify themselves as carers and may not be aware that they can be supported through Optalis to continue with their caring role. Carers often struggle to get a break as they spend a lot of time on care-giving duties, leading to isolation, emotional and physical stress, sleep deprivation, financial strain, and other challenges. We can assess and support them directly, or signpost them to other services.

What support is available for carers?

Support given can be in the form of a Timeout Card, Carers Direct Payment, referral to a service within the local authority or signposting to a community support group, depending on the outcome of the assessment. For example, young carers are assessed and supported through Family Action, dementia carers are referred to the Dementia Care Advisors and Alzheimer’s Dementia Support. We also have Community Support Workers based in the Mental Health Team who provide support to mental health carers.

The direct payment given to carers can be spent on things that make their caring role easier. They may also be eligible for a Timeout Card which gives access to a leisure centre in order for them to have a break from caring and to care for their own wellbeing. Respite makes a huge difference to the carer and to the person cared for. Other services available for carers through the council include parking permits and companion bus passes – see the council’s website for more details.

I’m a carer in the Royal Borough – how can I access support?

You can contact our duty team for advice and guidance on 01628 683744 or visit the Optalis website for our Carers Self-Assessment Form.
Could you work in care?

Optalis, our adult social care partner, is seeking more support workers to join our mission to help people in our community stay healthier, more independent, and live the lives they want for longer.

Optalis is a local, not-for-profit provider, owned jointly by the Royal Borough and Wokingham Borough Council, and is seeking to recruit caring people to a wide variety of rewarding roles that will make a positive difference to people’s lives.

There are many different types of jobs available and no two days are the same. Having the right qualities is all you need to start, there’s on-the-job training for everything else. Working in adult social care can fit around your life with flexible hours.

Watch our video to find out more about working at Optalis and see current opportunities on the Optalis recruitment webpages. 
Reminder: Find out more about options to improve the A308

Our consultation inviting the community to share their views on options to improve key sections of the A308 continues until Sunday 31 July.

We are initially considering how 21 sections of this key transport link, from the Bisham roundabout junction in the west, to the M25 in the east, could be improved over the coming years, and want to hear your views to help decide on the best options to create safer, more user-friendly routes for all.

To learn more, read our press release.
Take part in our South West Maidenhead consultation

We are holding a consultation on a key planning document for South West Maidenhead, a major development area bringing forward much-needed new homes, community facilities, employment space and improved public access to green space.

The last of our drop-in sessions will take place at Braywick Leisure Centre on Tuesday 26 July from 2pm to 7pm.

An online consultation event will also be held via Microsoft Teams on Wednesday 27 July, from 7pm to 9pm. The link for joining will be added to our website during w/c Monday 25 July.

You can visit our website to view the SPD document and supporting documents, complete the feedback form and discover more about South West Maidenhead.

Learn more in our press release.
Cost of living support for qualifying low-income households

People on means-tested benefits are in the process of reviving the first of two Cost of Living Payments totalling £650, as part of a government package to help families with cost of living pressures.

The first £326 instalment for qualifying low-income households in England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland will be paid by their usual payment method from 14 July 2022, continuing to the end of the month. For those eligible, the rest will follow in a second instalment in the autumn.

People receiving tax credits and no other eligible benefits will receive their first payment from HMRC in autumn and the second in winter.

In total, millions of vulnerable households will receive at least £1,200 from the
Government this year to help cover rising costs. There are specific payments for those on means tested benefits, for pensioners, those on disability benefits and to help people with energy bills.

For more information, go to the Cost Of Living Payment page on the Government website.

If you, or someone you know, are struggling with the cost of living, our Here to Help webpage has information on help available for paying energy bills or council tax, getting food and daily essentials.
Suggest discussion topics for our scrutiny panels

Did you know you can suggest discussion topics to our scrutiny panels?
A good topic suggestion can be an issue of concern in your local community which could be reviewed to improve the services we provide.

By suggesting topics, you can help ensure our local public services are delivered effectively, efficiently, and meet the needs of our communities.

To learn more about what makes a good scrutiny topic, and how to suggest one, visit our website. 
Visit Windsor partners with Accessible to develop new Accessibility Guides

Visit Windsor, in partnership with AccessAble, the UK’s leading provider of detailed disabled access information, is producing destination Access Guides for Windsor and Eton.

Featuring over 50 local businesses and tourist attractions, the Access Guides will help local residents and visitors with access requirements to plan their journeys to and around both towns. The guides help make it easier for disabled people and carers to access services and facilities and have a good experience while they are visiting a business or destination.

AccessAble will also provide Disability Essentials online training, which is designed to equip 250 people to engage with disabled people confidently and use appropriate skills. They are looking to work with local businesses that do not currently provide their in-house training. Interested businesses are invited to contact Julia White, visitor services manager.

The free Access Guides are due to launch in autumn 2022 and will be available on the Visit Windsor website and on the AccessAble App.
Mini Queen’s Baton Relay celebrates Commonwealth Games

Pupils from 21 primary schools across the Royal Borough took part in a mini Queen’s Baton Relay to celebrate the upcoming Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games.

The relay, which was organised by the Ascot and Maidenhead School Sport Partnership working with Leisure Focus, started at Waltham St Lawrence Primary School and saw the baton travel 27 miles from school to school across the borough.

Each school nominated two baton bearers and provided an inspirational message to be read out at each baton handover.
Have your children signed up for the Summer Reading Challenge?

The Gadgeteers Summer Reading Challenge is now at your local library and online.

The Gadgeteers will help children discover the amazing science and innovation behind the world around them. Gadgeteers will also feature amazing books, awesome rewards, and plenty of ideas for cool experiments and activities.

The challenge runs until Saturday 10 September. Look out for upcoming Gadgeteer library events over the summer.
Public inspection of accounts notice for 2021/22

We are planning to publish our draft annual accounts for 2021/22 on Monday 1 August on our Council and Democracy webpages.

A notice advising interested parties to inspect the accounts if they wish to can be found on our website.
Royal Borough community spotlight

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

  • Would you like to learn how to save a life? – (Saturday 23 July, 10.30am and 1pm). Clewer Parish Hall. The Windsor Community Defibrillator Partnership are running free defibrillator and CPR familiarization sessions. The sessions, which will last for 90 minutes, are provided by a formed South Central Ambulance Service paramedic. Spaces are limited to 40 attendees per session, please contact to book a place

  • Maidenhead Festival (Saturday 23 and Sunday 24 July, 10am to 10.30pm). Kidwells Park, Maidenhead. Maidenhead Festival is BACK! After a two-year break, they can't wait to welcome everyone back. Music, stalls, street food, the beach, a secret garden, the fun fair, inflatable fun zone and of course the massive fireworks display on Saturday night. And all completely free. For more information visit the Maidenhead Festival website

  • Sunday Summer Teas (Sunday 24 July to Sunday 28 August, 3pm to 5pm) St Michael’s Church, Bray. Tea and homemade cakes will be served every Sunday in aid of various charities over the 6-week holiday period. More information is available on the Bray St Michael website

  • Fifield Fun Day Sunday (Sunday 7 August, 1pm to 5pm) Deep Meadows, Fifield. Come and join Oakley Green, Fifield & District Community Association for a great day out including a full-size steam train, dog show, gun dog display, craft stalls and BBQ. Parking is free, and all proceeds will go to the Holyport Children’s Playground and Berkshire Air Ambulance

  • Crafty Workshops. Craft Coop Windsor is offering a range of crafty workshops over the summer in their Windsor Yards workshop space. The sessions include Introduction to screen printing, fused glass for children, recycled glass painting, Celtic knitting, and crochet. There is also a summer camp program for seven- to 12-year-olds and teens. Visit their Eventbrite page for more information

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 20,000 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:
Local travel updates

There are planned rail strikes by the RMT union on Wednesday 27 July and by the Aslef union on Saturday 30 July. Please visit the Great Western Railway website and the South Western Railway website for the latest local rail travel updates.

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
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