A report  released today by the British Government, after months of delay, confirms that the use of food banks across the UK is soaring.
The report, which was released by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, is damning for the Government. It highlights the inaccuracy of claims made by Lord Freud, a Government minister, which suggested that a rise in food bank use could be simply because of increased availability of the service. 
The report states that: “There is no systematic evidence on the impact of increased supply and hypotheses of its potential effects are not based on robust evidence.”
Keith Taylor, the Green Party’s MEP for South East England and the author of the ‘Food Bank Britain’report, said:
“This report confirms two things that we already knew. Firstly it reminds us that demand for food banks in the UK is soaring. My own research last year showed a 60% rise in demand in my constituency, and I know similar surges in demand have occurred all over the UK.
This report, which the Government has avoided releasing for many months, also confirms that the increase in demand for food banks is not simply because there are more of them supplying emergency food handouts. This explodes the myth, perpetuated by Government Minister Lord Freud, that food bank users are taking free handouts just because they’re available.
Food bank use is soaring because people in Britain are experiencing the grind of poverty. Wages have stagnated for years, benefits are being cut and, increasingly, people are finding their benefits removed without any good reason.
This out of touch Government has attempted to create an atmosphere of contempt for the poorest in society. Ultimately we know that poverty is a result of policy, and that the Government is responsible for the fact that so many people in this country are relying on emergency food handouts to support their families.”
1) The Government report is available here:https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/283071/household-food-security-uk-140219.pdf
3) Keith Taylor’s report, Food Bank Britain, is available here: http://issuu.com/greenkeithmep/docs/food_bank_britain_final
This week Kayla talks to her colleague from Brighton and Hove Energy Services Co-op Oliver Pendered who is their Communications and Communities Director
Ollie has turned his passion for the outdoors into a productive career in sustainability, corporate social responsibility, energy efficiency and renewable energy. He is the Founder of Communities Matter, a visionary organisation supporting people in effecting sustainable change through grass roots community engagement. He brings his skills in strategic communications to the BHESCO team, his commitment to providing clear information to communities; project management and facilitation as well as change and issue management.
On April the 28th Brighton Uni Drama Society (BUDS) will perform a production of Hamlet at the Marlborough Theatre. Join Rob and Scott (in their return to the station) as they discuss directing the show and interview their cast and crew. This week Rob and Scott introduce the series and are joined by Hugo Harwood, who plays Claudius — King of Denmark.
Meredith Collins from Brighton’s Pighog Publishing House talks to writer and poet MacGillivray.
MacGillivray is a Scottish writer and artist. Her poetry inhabits a rich artistic universe encompassing performance art, song-writing and the use of visual media such as sculpture and photography. Her multi-disciplinary practice gives her words an imaginative scope which few young poets in the UK can rival.
MacGillivray’s work summons forth a pantheon of muses, outlaws and showmen from the dark corners of Scottish and American history, animating their world with an incantatory free verse that is shockingly contemporary and hauntingly ritualistic. The poems excavate passion and transgression with precision and sympathy, allowing the reader to witness history from surprising new angles.
Under her birth name Kirsten Norrie, she has a Doctorate in Performance and Scottish Identity, for which she studied at the Ruskin School of Drawing and Fine Art, Oxford University. Her thesis is titled Cloth, Cull and Cocktail; Anatomising the Performer Body of ‘Scotland’. The wealth of academic research she undertook as part of this finds further expression in her debut collection, The Last Wolf of Scotland. This work treads a fine line between surreal reality and imaginative abstraction, in order to trace the violence through which national mythologies are forged and perpetuated, from the wilderness of the Scottish Highlands to the piratical showmanship of the wild west.
Pighog is an award-winning independent publisher creating groundbreaking experiences of the written and spoken word. They publish high quality original poetry, fiction and non-fiction work from a diverse range of regional, national and international voices. They are known for discovering exciting new talent and for unique and distinctive publications. Their aim is to present high quality work through high quality presentation — in print, online and live. They were shortlisted for the prestigious Michael Marks Publishers’ Award in 2012 and 2013, and Charlotte Gann’s The Long Woman was shortlisted for the 2012 Michael Marks Pamphlet Award. They do not back any particular literary ideology but prefer to offer readers a stimulating choice of well-made work. Their artistic eclecticism is complemented by dedication to regional voices. Their Sussex Series has brought attention to a group of writers who have been termed the ‘Beach Generation’. Pighog are committed to both traditional and new media publication. They are the first publisher to issue a book via Twitter, sending out a guide to writing poetry as a series of Tweets. Titles are now available on Kindle and Kobo.
LISTEN HERE to Flemmich interviewing AmyAnslow co-founder of hiSbe
LISTEN HERE Journalist Flemmich Webb interviews Professor John Chapman, discussing his research into ‘Emotionally Durable Design’ at the University of Brighton.
LISTEN HERE Syed Jung Chair of Brighton and Hove Muslim Forum appeals for donations from just £3 to help refugees in Syria. www.justgiving.com/Syed-Jung. He explains how he has explored the most effective route he can find to getting aid to the people who need it most.
LISTEN HERE TO LATEST INTERVIEW ON FRACKING .
Two Door Cinema Club’s Ben Thompson performed with the charity — called the Mlambe Project – which is working with Mlambe village, Southern Malawi, to build a primary school for 480 children.
The desperately needed school will be a boost for local teachers, who struggle to cope with around 97 pupils per class, though as many as 150 study in some lessons.
The scheme uniquely aims to support students in their final two years of study, by helping them to design a project to work on when they graduate.
Teaming up with children’s charity Wings of Hope, it is the first scheme of its kind in the UK and the song – called Rolling On by Phil Hussey– will provide a welcome boost to their efforts. Adam Rutherford, from the band Machine People also plays bass.
Project Manager Jamie Proctor, a Physics and Philosophy graduate from Sussex together with a group of friends — who were all at The University of Manchester — came up with the idea while studying.
He said: “After we came up with the idea for the graduate programme, we felt the best way to get it established would be to run the first project ourselves, to prove that it really works.
“This is much more than your standard ‘gap year’ work experience scheme. It’s a substantial commitment for students and fantastic opportunity for newly qualified graduates to make a real difference without having to pay for the privilege.
“It’s also a powerful way to get work experience and make yourself a more attractive prospect for employers.”
The team has worked tirelessly over the past year to raise the money for The Mlambe Project with the backing and support of a local charity called HELP Malawi, with the support of the University and local Rotary Clubs.
Their efforts included a mobile phone charging stall at the Glastonbury music festival, utilising their skills to make bike generators and a charging set up. They also run a fortnightly live music event in Brighton called Backjammin.
Jamie Proctor also set up a primary education fundraising programme — getting schools in the UK to twin their classroom with one they are building in Mlambe.
More recently the team has recruited more volunteers from Manchester, Brighton and Sussex universities to help them raise cash. This Christmas, they are running an online Crowdfunding campaign to raise more money.
Jamie added: “We urge the public to log on to our crowdfunding campaign — www.buzzbnk.com/themlambeproject — and back the project. In return you will receive perks which range from our Christmas single to naming a classroom and visiting Mlambe on a luxury tour of Malawi.
“But first and for most – get the song!”
Hurray : We reach phase 2 of 20s Plenty. Listen here to Chris Todd FoE and sign petition for more streets where children are in danger without 20mph
It’s good news that all parties have agreed to Phase 2 of Brighton and Hove’s 20 mph speed limit programme, but some roads used by many children and parents going to school around Fiveways, have been wrongly excluded.
Preston Drove (in the photo) and Stanford Avenue lost out due to a proposal by Labour Councillor Gill Mitchell, supported by other Labour and Conservative councillors, to exclude the roads on the basis that they were “key bus and taxi routes and a majority of residents in both roads having voted against these roads being included within the 20mph scheme.”
Sign the petition to save lives and restore some balance to these roads!
1250 signatures will trigger a full council debate!
These roads are NOT key routes for buses (which only use sections of the roads or are infrequently scheduled), and the residents’ response rate was only around 20% almost evenly split, for and against.
Further amendments by Conservative Councillor Geoffrey Theobald and the Labour Group hadSurrenden Road, Braybon Avenue and an area west of Ditchling Road denied 20 mph speed limits despite overwhelming road safety evidence to support speed reduction, and a community road safety campaign. Also, due to amendments, Portland Road has to await further monitoring.
Bricycles Campaigns and News - www.facebook.com/Bricycles
Following a special meeting of the environment, transport and sustainability committee on Wednesday 11 December, approval has been given to move to the next stage of consultation on revised proposals for Phase 2. The public will have the opportunity to comment on, support or oppose the proposals in January 2014 and councilors will consider the proposals again in March 2014.
Nearly 15,000 people responded to the consultation on proposals for the second phase of 20mph speed limits, covering nine areas of the city (PDF 2.62mb). Responses were collated with information from traffic surveys, road casualty data and street assessments, and a number of revisions were made to the proposals going to the committee.
Further amendments at the meeting removed a number of proposed streets from the new scheme or deferred decisions on them. These include Portland Road which remains at 30mph pending further monitoring. Stanford Avenue and Preston Drove will stay at 30mph. A decision on part of Hollingbury bounded by and including Ditchling Road, Surrenden Road, Braybon Avenue and Carden Avenue was deferred indefinitely so stays at 30mph for the foreseeable future.
Full details of the final 20mph phase 2 proposals will be available here soon.
- View the 20mph consultation responses by street (PDF 597kb)
- View the map of the proposed areas for each phase (PDF 2.38mb)
The aim of introducing the limit is to improve the street environment for all road users, including car drivers, by reducing the number and severity of collisions and casualties on the city’s roads, improving traffic flows and making the city a safer and better place to live in.
We hope that making the streets safer and more pleasant to use will encourage more cycling and walking especially for local trips. This will not only bring road safety benefits, but will also help to improve overall health and wellbeing, reduce congestion and could improve air quality.
A wide range national and international research shows that 20mph speed limits lead to a reduction in road collisions and the severity of casualties, improves in the quality of life of local neighbourhoods and encourages more walking and cycling for local trips. A Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents study showed that at 20mph there was a 2.5% chance of pedestrians being fatally injured, compared to a 20% chance at 30mph. A Department for Transport paper on setting local speed limits reports that on urban roads with low average traffic speeds, any 1mph reduction in average speed can reduce the frequency of collision frequency by around 6%.
Where it’s the limit, it’s the law…
20mph is now the legal speed limit on most roads in central Brighton & Hove — please look out for the signs.
The city centre was Phase 1 of the 20mph scheme (PDF 5.8mb) to introduce the speed limit for residential and shopping streets in the city, approved at Transport Committee in January 2013. The 20mph limit was introduced in central Brighton & Hove in April 2013 and is now legally enforceable. Road markings and signs have been installed across the area.
The programme is planned to be rolled out city-wide over the next two to three years, with consultation on phase 3 following the current work on the phase 2 areas.
The overall project budget is £1.5m spread over three to four years but this will be reviewed annually.
Frequently asked questions
Why are you proposing to introduce a 20mph limit for most of Brighton & Hove?
Following public consultation in 2012 and a growing number of petitions from local communities, a majority of residents across the city have told us they are in favour of the reduced limit for residential and local shopping areas.
National and international research is increasingly showing that a 20mph speed limit leads to a reduction in road collisions and the severity of casualties, improves in the quality of life of local neighbourhoods and encourages more walking and cycling for local trips. This in turn would bring significant health benefits and reduce congestion, all of which should make our city a better place to live, work in and visit.
A Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents study showed that at 20mph there was a 2.5% chance of pedestrians being fatally injured, compared to a 20% chance at 30mph. A Department for Transport paper on setting local speed limits also reports that, on urban roads with low average traffic speeds, any 1mph reduction in average speed can reduce the frequency of collision frequency by around 6%.
Following the initial consultation in 2011 and introduction of the city centre limit earlier this year, our plan has always been to consult on the following phases as soon as we can. There is enough evidence to show how 20mph limits improve road safety without waiting to show the effectiveness of introducing the limits in the city centre. However, early monitoring from the first six months of Phase 1 in the city centre shows there has been:
- A decrease in traffic speed on 74% on the roads.
- A significant reduction in the number and severity of collisions, and no fatal collisions since implementation. This includes a 20% decrease in the number of collisions and a 19% decrease in the number of casualties (based on five months of 2013 data compared with the three year average for the same five months in the previous three years.)
Which roads will be included?
The first phase includes most of the residential streets in central Brighton & Hove, plus the commercial heart of the city. Most major roads and the more significant or arterial routes beyond the Phase 1 central area are proposed to remain at their current limits, including the A259 seafront road, Old Shoreham Road, New Church Road, Ditchling Road, London Road and Lewes Road.
A 20 mph limit or ‘blanket ban’ across the entire city is not part of the proposals. The phase 2 proposals focus on residential streets, with most of the main arterial roads such as Old Shoreham Road, New Church Road, Ditchling Road, London Road and Lewes Road proposed to remain at their current speed limits — see the phase 2 city-wide map (PDF 2.62mb) for details. The consultation questionnaire asked residents for their views on which roads in their areas should be included or excluded.
- West Hove (PDF 873kb)
- Dyke Road west (PDF 1.15mb)
- Dyke Road east (PDF 1.10mb)
- Preston (PDF 845kb)
- Patcham & Hollingbury (PDF 743kb)
- Hollingbury & south Moulsecoomb (PDF 1mb)
- Coldean (PDF 376kb)
- Bevendean & north Moulsecoomb (PDF 795kb)
- East Brighton (PDF 728kb)
Is my street/neighbourhood included?
All streets within the Phase 1 area (PDF 5.8mb) are included. We consulted on the neighbourhoods and individual roads included in phase 2 and are going through the responses now. You can see the current map of the proposed areas for each phase (PDF 2.38mb).
Will the new 20mph limits be enforced?
The 20mph limits will be enforced in the same way that the 30mph has been. Where 20mph limits are installed, they are both legal and enforceable. Under the Road Traffic Act 1984, local authorities have the legal power to set speed limits on roads under their control. The limits are enforceable by the police and speed guns can detect speeds below 20mph. Please remember, where it’s the limit, it’s the law.
How long will it take to implement the proposal?
Following the 20mph speed limit being introduced in the city centre in April 2013, the plan is to roll out the programme city-wide, with further consultation on the later phases, over the next two to three years.
Consultation on the phase 2 areas closed on 4 October. The responses of the consultation were put together with information from traffic surveys, road casualty data and street assessments, and revised proposals went to the Environment, Transport & Sustainability Committee on Wednesday 11 December. Approval was given to move to the next stage of consultation and the public will have the opportunity to comment on, support or oppose the proposals in January 2014 and councillors will consider the proposals again in March 2014.
Listen here to the newest show from Meredith Collins, editor with local independent publishers Pighog , where she talks to poet Brendan Cleary. The Pighog Literature Review is a weekly look at good reads , poetry and prose, written and published right here in Sussex. She will be discussing books for all ages including tasty treats for winter nights that even the thorniest non reader will be unable to resist. More info at http://www.pighog.co.uk/about/index.html
Below is a short intro from Pighog website — go there to find details of their events etc!
Pighog is an award-winning independent publisher creating groundbreaking experiences of the written and spoken word. We publish high quality original work for a diverse range of regional, national and international voices.
We are known for discovering exciting new talent and for our unique and distinctive publications. Our aim is to present high quality work through high quality presentation — in print, online and live. We were shortlisted for the prestigious 2012 Michael Marks Publishers Award and Charlotte Gann’s The Long Woman was shortlisted for the 2012 Michael Marks Pamphlet Award. Sarah Jackson’s Milk was shortlisted for the same award in 2008. We have also won a Poetry Book Society Pamphlet Choice Award for Lorna Thorpe’s Dancing to Motown.
Our approach is eclectic. We do not back any particular literary ideology but prefer to offer our readers a stimulating choice of well-made work. Our artistic eclecticism is complemented by our dedication to regional voices. Our Sussex Series has brought attention to a group of writers who have been termed the ‘Beach Generation’. We are now developing a series devoted to poets from Munster in Ireland. We have international connections with poets, publishers and organisations in Canada, India, Ireland, Mexico, Puerto Rico, Chile, Finland, Germany, Holland, Jamaica, Scandinavia, Slovenia, Spain and the USA.
We are committed to both traditional and new media publication. We are the first publisher to issue a book via Twitter, sending out a guide to writing poetry as a series of Tweets. In 2009, Pighog launched its first writing competition (for writers of fiction for children and young people) and in 2010 has taken over responsibility for Pulse: Brighton International Poetry Festival, which in 2010 was based around the literary weekend party Pigbaby.
Looking ahead, we are developing a new series for emerging poets (Pighog Passports) as well as pamphlet collections of short stories.
We believe that language is energy and that literary works harness that energy to create feeling, insight and imaginative experience to change minds and lives.
“Pamphlet poetry, for me, is one of the most revolutionary and exciting forms of art. Not least, because it bypasses fashion and establishment and social clique and gives an opportunity to everyone who thinks they have something good to say through poetry to try. That equally on the receiving end, it transcends the values of class and culture and even education, to reach anyone who has an art and desire to be human.” — Lady Marks from her Inaugural Address to the 2008 Michael Marks Awards at the British Library.