Laptops and Tablets – BBC Making a difference

BBC – Making a difference – donate a laptop (or device)

As a creaky old bloke, it takes a lot to stir me into action, but the plight of hundreds of thousands of kids having to learn at home, yet don’t have the wherewithal to do so has achieved just that.

Watching ‘BBC Breakfast’ this morning I was struck by two young twins who were the recipients of a donated laptop and their desire for that to ‘make a difference’.

So, here is a plea to anyone in Cheshire; ‘Do you have a laptop, tablet or smartphone, languishing unused in that cupboard?’  If so then log on to this web page;

And see how you can help someone who really needs it

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Christmas Tree – postscript

A thought with regard to Christmas Tree Collections …

Is there anyone in the Parish who has an industrial branch chipping machine and would be willing to help?  We have a place where the chippings could be left and made good use of.

Please contact the editor via

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Christmas Tree Collections

We have just received this notification via Tarporley Rotary;

The 2021 Christmas Tree Collection organised by St Luke’s Hospice has been cancelled as reported on their website. This is so sad but I think the right decision under the very difficult circumstances and the increasingly challenging situation we are all living in and with.

Below is the extract copied from the website;

For those who have booked a collection or know someone who has there is advice in regard of donations which is helpful – particularly for those wishing to leave their donation with the Hospice.

Perhaps it may be appropriate to consider including the info on the Utkinton website by way of support for the Hospice in their efforts to let people know in advance of the event as notice is short and the last thing they need is calls to say trees have not been collected.

Info copied from website

It is with a heavy heart that St Luke’s Hospice has made the very difficult decision to cancel our Christmas Tree Collection which was due to begin on Thursday 14th January.

We are so sad to have come to this decision as we would never want to let you, our kind supporters, down in any way and the decision has not been taken lightly.

We have made the decision as we feel the risk of going ahead with the tree collection is too great to our staff and volunteers in light of the increasing transmission of Covid-19 in Cheshire and the number of people hospitalised at present. As a critical care provider ourselves we really have a duty of care to the local community and as such feel that we should, where possible, be encouraging people to stay at home in line with Government guidance to protect our NHS.

An email will be sent out from our partners at the JustHelping charity to all of you who have booked a tree collection.  If you have registered for a collection please look out for the JustHelping name as the email will not come from us at St Luke’s Hospice.

This is a devastating blow for the Hospice after an extremely challenging year for fundraising. The Christmas Tree Collection is one of our biggest annual campaigns generating vital funds which we rely on to continue to provide our care. We know that times are tough for everyone, however if you are able to let the Hospice hold on to your donation then we would be incredibly grateful. Of course we completely understand if you would like a refund and details of how to request this will be included in the email from JustHelping.

Once again we would like to reiterate how very sorry we are. Thank you for your understanding and continued support.

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Broadband update

If anyone is expecting a visit from a BT Engineer, it is unlikely to happen before March.  We had an appointment booked for Thursday 14th and I rang up to check times and was told that the latest instruction is for Engineers not to enter premises – protecting us all – and our appointment is now mid-March.

It might be worth you calling 0800 800150 to be on the safe side.


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UCPC Draft Neighbourhood Plan – Examiner’s Questions

Just before Christmas we received a letter from the Examiner in response to the submission of our Draft Neighbourhood Plan.  We are publishing that letter below.

Word Format Examiner Procedural Matters Utkinton and Cotebrook 141220

PDF Format Examiner Procedural Matters Utkinton and Cotebrook 141220

The Neighbourhood Plan Steering Group and the Parish Council are in the process of compiling a response that we will ratify at the Parish Council Meeting on Tuesday 12th January prior to submission to the Examiner.

Once the document is approved we will post it here.


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A little light relief …

I need some help (some say I need a lot) to take down the Christmas Tree outside Utkinton Village Hall – I find climbing difficult.  Once its down we will try to find one of the charities who dispose of the environmentally – can anyone help with that as well.  If the Charity charges, I will pay for it.

Just let me know please!

07860 917446

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Taxis to Cheshire View for Vaccinations more added

Good morning all,

If you are having difficulty getting to Cheshire View for your Vaccination Appointment, we have contacted the three local taxi businesses who will all do pickups in our Parish for this purpose.  They will charge for a round trip and waiting time and the charges are, normally, for up to two people.

We have been asked to remind everyone that two people can only be from the same family or ‘bubble’.  Any other combination will be in breach of the regulations.

Their details are

Pegasus Private Hire of Tarporley – 07576 661008

APOLLO TRAVEL – 07922 442256

Billinge Travel – 01829 732036

Tarvin Cars (Kelsall) – 07890 454207

Jones Holidays – 01352 733292

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National Lock Down


Summary: what you can and cannot do during the national lockdown

You must stay at home. The single most important action we can all take is to stay at home to protect the NHS and save lives.

You should follow this guidance immediately. The law will be updated to reflect these new rules.

Leaving home

You must not leave, or be outside of your home except where necessary. You may leave the home to:

  • shop for basic necessities, for you or a vulnerable person
  • go to work, or provide voluntary or charitable services, if you cannot reasonably do so from home
  • exercise with your household (or support bubble) or one other person, this should be limited to once per day, and you should not travel outside your local area.
  • meet your support bubble or childcare bubble where necessary, but only if you are legally permitted to form one
  • seek medical assistance or avoid injury, illness or risk of harm (including domestic abuse)
  • attend education or childcare – for those eligible

Colleges, primary and secondary schools will remain open only for vulnerable children and the children of critical workers. All other children will learn remotely until February half term. Early Years settings remain open.

Higher Education provision will remain online until mid February for all except future critical worker courses.

If you do leave home for a permitted reason, you should always stay local in the village, town, or part of the city where you live. You may leave your local area for a legally permitted reason, such as for work.

If you are clinically extremely vulnerable you should only go out for medical appointments, exercise or if it is essential. You should not attend work

Meeting others

You cannot leave your home to meet socially with anyone you do not live with or are not in a support bubble with (if you are legally permitted to form one).

You may exercise on your own, with one other person, or with your household or support bubble.

You should not meet other people you do not live with, or have formed a support bubble with, unless for a permitted reason.

Stay 2 metres apart from anyone not in your household.

Published 4 January 2021
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Census 2021

Every 10 years, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) carries out a census to find out more about the people who live in England and Wales and about the make-up of local neighbourhoods.  The next census will take place on Sunday 21st March 2021.
The census is important because it allows central and local government, health authorities, charities and other organisations to target their resources more effectively and to plan housing, education, health and transport services for years to come.
I have been appointed by the ONS as the Census Engagement Manager for Cheshire West and Chester. My role is centred on building relationships and engaging with local communities to ensure that everyone can participate in the census and be counted.  I am trying to reach out to those in our community who might, for various reasons, have barriers to participation in the census, to help to explain the purpose behind the census and to help them to take part.
As your parish/town council is the closest level of government to the residents in your community, I would like to ask for your help in communicating positive and helpful census messaging via your usual channels of communication – website, newsletter, facebook page – between now and the end of March.
I have attached a Councillor handbook which can be forwarded to local Councillors.  Printed copies are available if you require them. This explains in more detail the role that local Councillors can play in helping to deliver a successful census.  I have also taken the liberty of attaching a census logo and some copy that could be used on your website or social media to announce that the census is coming.
I would be delighted to provide you with more detailed copy if you would like to run, for example, an article in your parish magazine or newsletter about the census, to talk about the help that is available to those who need it or to try to dispel any concerns that residents might have regarding the security of their data.  Please do not hesitate to contact me to discuss your plans.
Thank you for your assistance.
Kind regards,
Graham Povey

Graham Povey | Census Engagement Manager, Cheshire West Chester and Halton |

Office for National Statistics | +44 (0)7452 945781 |

Ready, steady, census

The decennial census is almost upon us.

Households across Cheshire West and Chester will soon be asked to take part in the nationwide survey of housing and the population. It has been carried out every decade since 1801, with the exception of 1941.

Information from the digital-first census will help decide how services are planned and funded in your local area. This could mean things like doctors’ surgeries, housing or new bus routes.

Households will receive a letter with a unique access code in the post, allowing them to complete their questionnaire online. Paper questionnaires will be available on request. Census day is March 21.

For more information, visit

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Vaccine Upate

Covid-19 Vaccinations will start this week for Tarporley residents.

Tarporley Health Centre, who are working in conjunction with other local GP Practices in The Rural Alliance Primary Care Network have published the following statement.
“The Rural Alliance practices will receive 975 doses of the Pfizer vaccine on Wednesday 6th January. We will be delivering the Rural Alliance Covid vaccine clinics, using this vaccine, on Thursday 7th, Friday 8th and Saturday 9th January. These clinics will be held as Primary Care Network clinics at Cheshire View which is the Freemasons Hall in Christleton. The address is: Cheshire View, Plough Lane, Christleton, Chester CH3 7PT.

Route from Cotebrook and Utkinton to Cheshire View

Drs Adey & Dancy have 145 appointments to book across the 3 days. We will be working with our colleagues from Bunbury, Kelsall, Malpas, Tarporley & The Village Surgeries Group.
We will be arranging for our most elderly and frail patients to attend for a 10 minute appointment on one of these days, with a second appointment exactly 12 weeks later. They will be expected to wait in the building for 15 minutes after their vaccine for observation.
We ask that patients do not attempt to enter Cheshire View until their designated appointment time. Patients can attend with a member of their family or carer if required, e.g. if they have poor mobility etc. Wheelchairs or walking aids can be used throughout the building, the access is via a ramp.
We ask that everyone attending socially distances themselves from the person in front of them.
Patients will need to bear with us, this will be approximately 35% of our over 80s. We are limited by the national supply and we do not know when the next delivery will be. However we are told that vaccine delivery will improve over the coming weeks.
This is very great news for our patients.”
Additionally, CWAC Council have published this urgent message from the NHS:
“If you’re eligible for a vaccine, but are yet to be contacted, please remain patient. You will not be missed. More vaccination services will be available in the New Year and the NHS will contact you when it is the right time to come forward.
Please do not contact your GP practice, local hospital or council to seek a COVID-19 vaccine appointment – appointments cannot be made in this way.
The recent rise in cases and emergence of a new variant of the virus also shows that we cannot let our guard down now.
Continue to wear a face covering and follow social distancing and hand hygiene guidance as, until a vaccine has been fully rolled out, this is the most effective way to reduce transmission of the virus and help save lives.”
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