Report from I.W. Councillor John Nicholson

Posted by Admin on Thursday, 20th February 2020, 23:41

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COUNCILLOR JOHN NICHOLSON

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Ward Member for Northwood & Cowes South
Chairman of Policy & Scrutiny Committee for Adult Social Care & Health

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SUNNYSIDE

PALLANCE LANE

NORTHWOOD

PO31 8LT
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Tel: 07918 757843

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Email: cllr.john.nicholson@btconnect.com

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See the I.W. Councillor’s section

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WARD REPORT – FEBRUARY/MARCH 2020

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The Report appearing in the March 2020 edition of Northwood News:

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Pallance Road Safety Measures Update
Residents, especially those that walk up and down Pallance Road, will be glad to know that the safety issues requested are actually underway, and Island Roads has carried out a levels survey for the shallow concrete verge gutter to contain and channel the groundwater that seeps onto the road at the top end, below Wyatts Lane.
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These things do take time, and some of the measures may not be a perfect solution, but, being pragmatic, they are better than doing nothing. The Parish did have £15K in S106 money (funds conditioned in Planning Permissions for infrastructure improvements), but new rules now mean that these funds will go into a central pot for which Towns and Parishes will have to bid for. So, we had better use it or lose it, even though £15K does not go far when you are talking of Highways works.
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Place Plan Update
As Newport and Ryde progress with their Place Plans and the evidence abounds of the benefits that follow, I hear more and more local Councillors say this is definitely something that we need to do for the Cowes/ Northwood area, with all the assets that we have, not just in our history and heritage, but also in the strength of businesses that we have in the combined areas, many of them world-class. A coordinated Plan for our area that also relates to our neighbours in Newport and in Ryde areas, and feeds into a new coordinated Island Plan, can only be a boost for the Island, its businesses and its residents.
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I am not sure it would ever be possible, but I do wonder if there will be a day when some Town and Parishes may offer services that are so valuable to their communities that there is no need to charge a precept. Our new interim Monitoring Officer issues regular bulletins advising of rules, rights and opportunities, and the February one talked of how local Councils can generate income through selling valuable services and undertake wealth-generating activities that benefit the community. I might be just dreaming, but I will look around at other localities to see if there are any examples of good practice that might be appropriate to Cowes and Northwood. If anyone knows of anything, would you mind dropping me a line? Thanks.
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Health Services – Partnering with Portsmouth
As the IW Trust improves it is increasingly noticeable that the departments that are making the biggest strides are those that have an external partner, whilst those that don’t seem to stay in isolated stagnation. To this end, the growing experimental working relationship with Portsmouth QA hospital has proved beneficial. The departments that Portsmouth has operated on the Island, at St Mary’s, because of its greater expertise and resources in that subject, have proved a success, and it is on that sound evidence that a further working relationship has been sought.
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It works well for Portsmouth too, I am told. We will still be an IW Trust, but the partnership will deliver safer, better services for Isle of Wight residents, give greater support to staffing issues that we have been unable to resolve on our own and give greater peer support to senior medical staff. Who knows, if the combination works that well, could the result be that we become part of another University Hospital facility?
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The other major development is the advent of the Integrated Care Partnership (ICP) for the Isle of Wight, replacing the Local Care Board. The ICP will give greater transparency and accountability. It will operate more like a Board, driving greater integration and coordination across sectors and partners, identifying and addressing opportunities to streamline the delivery of care and, importantly, areas where effective preventative measures could be taken to avoid patients’ descent into the need for hospitalisation or into dependency for long-term serious conditions.
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I am also told that the trust is recruiting to its Research and Development department. This is exciting news and a real sign that we are at last getting a real grip of our services. Our Island-based R&D has delivered some great work in the past, one notable achievement being research carried out on the Island concerning Asthma. The Island is a special place to carry out medical research because of its geographical nature and the containment that brings to its population. We should, indeed, be playing to our strengths.

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John Nicholson
Ward Member for Northwood & Cowes South.

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See the I.W. Councillor’s section

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