Talks over new Calderdale memorial for those who died in the pandemic

Calderdale Council’s Cabinet has set out its “ambitious” aims for the first six months of the new council year.

Friday, 11th June 2021, 3:00 pm

Cabinet approved and is committed to deliver a number of priorities, which have associated actions.

Council leader Coun Tim Swift (Lab, Town) said the report set out in an ambitious plan how the council will help residents and businesses bounce back from COVID.

People have shown resilience, flexibility and enterprise during the pandemic and the council’s job will be to create the right environment where those values could be amplified, he said.

Calderdale Council leader councillor Tim Swift

“We are focused on getting on with the job and getting on with the delivery,” he said.

The council will also look into a memorial which might be created for those who have lost their lives in the pandemic – there will be consultation as to what people might like to see and Coun Swift said the council welcomed ideas.

One key area will be boosting business, including developing a “welcome back” campaign to support business and tourism.

Deputy Leader Coun Jane Scullion (Lab, Luddenden Foot), who is also Cabinet member for Regeneration and Strategy, said one aspect would be the council spending more of its own money in Calderdale, using local suppliers and businesses and keeping the money circulating in the local economy.

Currently the council spends 40 per cent of its money in this way. “We can do a lot better than that,” she said.

Other initiatives will include tackling fly-tipping and litter clean-up teams working with community groups, completing community asset transfers as bases for volunteer groups to meet and work from for their communities, the council honing its commercial instincts and operation, implementing an education recovery plan from COVID including equal access to digital technology, healthy food and high-quality activities, and developing a one-stop shop for care services, making the process simpler.

Developing the Calderdale Cares plan will be an important part of the latter – moving from a system that’s difficult for people to navigate to supporting people where they are – moves also approved by Cabinet.

Continuing ongoing partnership work to keep COVID infection rates as low as possible and harnessing its successful contact tracing service, continuing to ensure fair opportunities for all by prioritising inclusion, equality and diversity, building on strong partnership work to reduce the risk of future flooding across the Calder Valley and continuing the fight against climate change and reducing carbon emissions through initiatives such as tree planting are also measures included.

Invest to save projects such as the scheme to introduce LED street lights, energy efficiency improvements in council buildings and insulation for low-income households will also feature having proved their worth.

The council will also press ahead with major projects to boost transport and business opportunities.