Herefordshire Council statement: Blueschool House audit | Herefordshire Council

Herefordshire Council has begun a review of its internal procedures following the findings of the audit

A review by the South West Audit Partnership (SWAP) was requested by Herefordshire Council’s incoming Chief Finance Officer to investigate the Blueschool House project management and overspend. The findings were considered by the council’s audit and governance committee on Wednesday 20 September 2017.

The audit scope included the background to the key decision, the procurement of the contract, changes to the original scope of refurbishment work, an understanding of the escalation of costs and how changes to the contract and refurbishment were authorised.

Herefordshire Council has begun a review of its internal procedures following the findings of the audit.

Andrew Lovegrove, Herefordshire Council’s incoming Chief Finance Officer, said:

“On behalf of Herefordshire Council, I would like to apologise unreservedly. Herefordshire Council prides itself in trying to ensure best value for money for Herefordshire residents in all our projects and in this project we failed to do so. It is disappointing for us all to find that some colleagues, however small in number, did not observe the correct procedures. This is also entirely in contrast to Herefordshire Council’s performance managing its entire capital expenditure of £55.8m within budget, whilst delivering multiple projects successfully.

“The Audit and Governance Committee has approved a series of recommendations to prevent this happening again, which we fully accept and will make the appropriate improvements to the way we work. We will report back to the committee in January to assure them that changes have been made.”

Cordon reduced following controlled detonations at Rotherwas Industrial Estate, Hereford
The 200m cordon placed around Rotherwas Industrial Estate after the discovery of suspected WWII phosphorus grenades at a business premises on the estate yesterday (Wednesday, September 6) has been reduced to 50m. This means that local residents and businesses who were evacuated yesterday evening, can now return to their properties.

Controlled detonations were safely carried out by the Army's Explosive Ordnance Disposal [EOD] operators this afternoon (Thursday).

Risk to the public was low and we ensured measures were in place to ensure the safety of safety of the general public, road users, nearby homes and businesses and workers on site at all times.

We would like to again thank the local community for their continued support, their co-operation and understanding is appreciated whilst we and our partners continue to safely resolve the situation.

Superintendent Sue Thomas - West Mercia Police and Geoff Hughes - Director Economies, Communities and Corporate, Herefordshire Council

Hereford duck Pond Action Day

Please come and join us. Sunday, October 1st

UPDATE: A man has died following a horrific fatal accident at around 10 pm tonight on the A49 Hereford to Ross Road just passed the Axe and Cleaver.

A vehicle collided into the side of a tractor and trailer that was carrying bales of hay and coming out of a field, the hay subsequently caught fire, which is all that you can see in this photo.

Emergency vehicles from both Hereford and Ross attended the scene and have been in attendance all night.

The road will remain closed for most of today while emergency repairs are carried out to the surface. There are diversions in place.

Photo courtesy of Colin Lewis

Timeline Photos

The Old House with flowers in full bloom, looking beautiful on this lovely sunny day in Hereford. #instagram #igershereford #hereford #hereforyou #herefordvoice #herefordshire #summer2017 #instalike

Hereford duck Pond Action Day

Volunteers required to help remove weeds, litter and trim back bushes etc. Please bring with you garden tools such as sheers, rakes, spades and hand saws for cutting thick bushes and overgrown branches etc.

Refreshments will be provided.

Just turn up at 9.00am

If you have any questions please drop me a message or contact Jim Kenyon 07711316013 or Keith Marston

A planning application has been submitted for the proposed erection of two plinths on the site of the Skateboard Park on Holmer Road Hereford to display sculptures and similar public art.

The sculptures would be no more than 4 metres in height, similar to the Woodpecker sculpture at Whitecross Road.

The exhibits will not exceed the plinth size of 2 x 2 metres. The sculptures and public art will be created by local artists and students from the Hereford Art College and will be unique to Hereford.

The idea is to change these sculptures every three or four months based on the same principle as the sixth plinth in Trafalgar Square London.

There are no plans to include any lighting. Information about the artists will be displayed in the boom box already on site.

Planning application P172296/F

Example below:

At Last!

The monstrosity left behind following a major fire that damaged Alban House in High Town Hereford is finally going to be given a new lease of life.

This eyesore has been left untouched ever since the fire back in 2010.

Plans have been submitted this week for alterations and extensions to form 2 ground floor retails units with 10 residential units above with 6 additional apartments at the rear facing onto East Street and a further 3 townhouses also at the rear.

There will be informative tours of our crematory, where you will be guided through the cremation process to help dispel the many myths and fears people often have

The Hereford crematorium open day on 16 September is an opportunity to meet with the friendly and helpful crematorium team who will be on hand to answer any of your questions and help allay any fears and providing reassurances about what happens after those curtains close.

When faced with bereavement it can be a very distressing time for those involved and people often don’t know which way to turn, the team will be providing informative tours of our crematory, where you will be guided through the cremation process to help dispel the many myths and fears people often have; there will be several tours available throughout the day.

For people who are thinking ahead and beginning to make plans for their own funerals in advance, the open day provides the opportunity to talk to a number of services who can offer guidance on pre-planned funerals and support during times of loss, including bereavement counselling, solicitor, independent celebrant, funeral directors, green burials and monumental masons.

Refreshments will be available throughout the day in the waiting room next to the crematorium chapel,

For more information on the crematorium and the services available, please visit the crematorium website.

For more information on the open day on Saturday 16 September from 12.30 to 4.30pm, please contact the crematorium team on 01432 383200 or

Could you spare a few hours once a month on a Sunday? 'Contact the Elderly' organises free monthly tea parties for people over the age of 75 who live alone.

Tea parties are held in volunteers homes and transport is provided by volunteer drivers. The tea parties are a great opportunity for older people to have an afternoon out, enjoy cake and conversation, and make new friends in their community.

There is currently a group set up in Hereford, but a few more volunteer drivers are needed to take older guests to it. If you enjoy the company of older people then get in touch to help end loneliness.

Timeline Photos

Captured some beautiful cloud reflections this evening of the river Wye taken from the Victoria Bridge #riverwye #instagram #igershereford #hereford #herefordvoice #hereforyou #water #instalike

Photos from Hereford Voice's post

How wonderful to see that the Widemarsh War Memorial has been restored.

The restoration work was instigated by Hereford City Council - Ward Councillor Paul Stevens after he had been contacted by local veteran Mr David Williams.

Councillor Stevens instructed stone mason Si Hudson to carry out the work, and as you can see from these photographs has done an absolutely fantastic job of bringing back to life the names of the soldiers who gave their lives. There are over 70 names on the memorial in total and their names are now being revealed once again inlaid with black paint. The restoration work will be complete within the next few days.

Councillor Paul Stevens is attempting to contact any known relatives of these soldiers and he has already had some success and has managed to contact several people in time for a rededication ceremony.

Photos from Hereford Voice's post

A few months ago we were walking past the duck pond and noticed how dirty and full of algae it had become and I commented at the time on how it had deteriorated over the years. A few days later we noticed a new Facebook group that has only recently been set up by local chap Keith Marston called 'The Duck Pond Hereford clean up' and thought what a great idea, we joined the group immediately and said that Hereford Voice would help out and publicise this idea as much as possible. Jim Kenyon is also doing what he can to raise awareness.

We took this photograph today, the pond is absolutely covered in green algae, a lot of this is because people are feeding these ducks with bread, most of us think this is kind but in reality, bread can make ducks ill and certainly does not contain the right calories and nutrition to keep ducks warm during the winter months. Rotting bread pollutes the water and encourages bad surface algae which kill the fish and causes diseases in ducks as well making the water smell.

We had another thought, long term we could we have a food vending machine like the one in the photo below installed and the proceeds from any profits made to go towards the maintenance of the duck pond...

Herefordshire Council has won an enforcement case against two builders found guilty of fly tipping by the River Lugg.

Samuel Cooper, 31, from Hereford and Matthew Taylor, 28, from Staunton-on-Wye, were both found guilty of failing to transfer controlled waste to an authorised person at Hereford Magistrates’ Court on Friday 4 August 2017. Mr Cooper was also found guilty of transporting the waste without a waste carriers licence.

Mr Cooper received fines totalling £2382.50 and Mr Taylor received fines totalling £1882.50.

The fly tipped building waste – which weighed in at 720kg - was reported to Herefordshire Council by an Environment Agency Officer at the River Lugg, which is a site of special scientific interest and conservation.

Kay Champion, who heads the Environment Agency’s West Midlands waste crime team, said:

“We are very pleased to have been able to help Herefordshire Council in taking this prosecution forward, and of course we’re pleased at the outcome. Fly tipping is not just an anti-social blight on our communities, it costs councils and landowners millions of pounds every year to clear up.

“We hope this case will send a very clear message to anyone thinking of breaking the law in this way.”

The maximum penalty for fly tipping is a £50,000 fine and/ or 5 years imprisonment.

Marc Willimont, Herefordshire Council’s Head of Regulatory and Development Management Services, said:

“Action will be taken against any trader, business or person which illegally disposes of their waste or does not ensure that their waste is collected by a registered waste carrier.

“We would encourage anybody who sees fly tipping in action to report the details directly to Herefordshire Council.”

The Community Protection Team will investigate fly tipping cases that are reported via the Herefordshire Council website or by calling 01432 261761. For further information visit


Sad news to learn that The Booth Hall is closed again.

Quote taken from their FB page tonight

"We are sure that many of you have heard the rumours and murmurs that the booth Hall doors have sadly shut - we are devastated to tell you this is true and we only found out ourselves just days ago! Sadly after many months of giving our love, time sweat and soul into the building and the music scene the financial side of things eventually beat us and we had to make our peace with the fact we couldn't carry on! We must above all else thank all the people that made this journey possible, enjoyable, special and magical - the people who have facilitated music, supported us and all the people who came through our doors to share so many moments of happiness with us! We love you all for being our community for over a year and a half! With love to you all and a wish that you keep music alive always... And now sadly the booth must wish you a goodnight!"

Photos from Hereford Voice's post

Hereford Weeds in Bloom...

We took these pictures to highlight how bad they have become throughout the city.

We also have MAJOR concerns over these two trees on the Belmont Road. We have mentioned this several times in the past and yet nothing is being done about it. These trees are a potential accident just waiting to happen. The roots have pushed out the wall beneath. A good storm and strong winds and these will be down.

Walking across the Old Bridge last evening you cannot help but notice that it is a disgrace! Our Old Bridge is the picture that represents Hereford on postcards etc...

The Herefordshire Country Fair is taking place in Hereford this Sunday!

Fishing, laser clay shooting, dog classes, showjumping, classic cars and so much more. Learn how Coracles are made, visit the Commemoration Tent and explore the amazing legacy of the Herefordshire WW1 Home Front. Watch Jump 4 Heroes appear from the skies and see the Cavalry of the Heroes and James Dylan's Motorcycle Stuntworld team. Plus the worlds largest John Deere tractor!

A Park and Ride Service will be running all day - check out all the details here >

Photos from Hereford Voice's post

It appears that we may have yet another idiot camper in our midsts?...only this one must be a thrill seeker to be camping right on the edge of the dual carriageway.

You see, if you do not move these people immediately it just encourages more idiots to follow.

Photos from Hereford Voice's post

Breaking News:

We are hearing some disturbing reports that Gelpack Hereford told all of their staff to go home at 2pm today and to return for a meeting on Tuesday.

It is not sounding good from the reports we are hearing. There is an emergency meeting next week from our understanding but potentially almost 200 jobs at risk here.

MEETING UPDATE - 8th August 2017:

Unfortunaltey following todays meeting it looks like virtually everyone has lost their job and all 3 sites will close.

We have managed to obtain a copy of the letter handed out to the staff at the meeting, see bewlo:

£300k backing for Hereford Bypass

Midland Connect allocate funding to progress the bypass scheme

Midlands Connect, a collaboration across the whole of the Midlands between Local Authorities, Local Enterprise Partnerships, Network Rail, Highways England and central government, has allocated £300k of funding to help progress the Hereford Bypass scheme development.

The bypass scheme has been identified as ‘an early priority’ for Midlands Connect as it supports connectivity within the Marches, the Midlands region and across the border with Wales.

Councillor Philip Price, cabinet member infrastructure said:

“Having the support of Midlands Connect to deliver the bypass scheme is key in its successful delivery. The bypass will deliver the growth Herefordshire vitally needs to remain self-sustaining; but from a regional viewpoint it also delivers an improved regional corridor from the Midlands, the Marches and into South Wales.”

Pledging the financial support during a visit to Hereford last week, Midlands Connect Programme Director, Maria Machancoses said:

“The A49 Hereford Bypass will strengthen the economic and transport links between the Midlands and Wales, benefitting people and businesses.”

At last!!

We may see some cash machines at the Old Market shopping centre.

Notemachine have submitted another application for the installation of 2 x ATM's to be located near the lifts and Waitrose.

The first application was submitted in June 2015 and was refused, lets hope that this application is more successful.

'Remember where you heard it first'

The council will seek approval for extra money to complete Blueschool House, they are only a £1million pound short! Yes a £1million pound, so where will they find this extra money?

Because apparently we do not have any due to cut backs, not even enough money to kill the cities weeds. Yet Councillor Chris Chappell advises us to remove these weeds ourselves! - "No point in moaning about it, please volunteer to get rid of the weeds in your patch. Thanks to government cuts in subsidies"

According to the Council website Herefordshire Council will achieve a saving of over £1million over the next ten years by investing in Blueschool House, receiving rental income from DWP and saving on property costs for Franklin House. They will spend this now on the overspend here, great savings eh!

It was published on the Council website at the end of July that Blueschool House will open on schedule in September.

Full debate on our forums:

Woman camping on main Hereford roundabout.
Police have just issued the following statement: POLICE in Hereford have released a statement outlining the support they have provided to a homeless woman living on the city’s busiest roundabout.

The Hereford Times reported last week how Samantha Lamputt had pitched up on the grass alongside the A49 near Tesco and claimed she had not been offered emergency accommodation.

A spokesman for Herefordshire Council, however, said numerous attempts have been made each week over the past several months to provide help and support.

Now, the Safer Neighbourhood Team for Hereford have released a public statement which says they have been actively engaging with Ms Lamputt, 33, to try and help her over the last seven months.

The statement, posted on Facebook, said: “Everyone has rights. You have the right to live how you choose and you have the right to decline assistance if you wish.

"You can decline to claim benefits and decline assistance with accommodation, if you wish. This is a right everyone has and a right that this lady has chosen for herself.

“We have linked in with the Outreach Worker, whose last visit was July 13, where she offered the woman another option of temporary accommodation, this was declined.

“This type of offer has been made before and declined.

"She has been offered advice and assistance with benefits, this has too been declined.

“We would like to reassure the community that although this woman has chosen not to engage with us or the services available to her we will continue to check on her as her wellbeing and safety is paramount.

“We are aware that the location she is in is not ideal, for her or for road users.

"We urge road users to be observant whilst in the area of the roundabout to ensure their own safety and the safety of this woman.”

Anyone willing to discuss how the police work with partners to address issues relating to homelessness in Hereford should call the team on 101.

Summer noise nuisance | Environment and pollution | Herefordshire Council

Summer noise nuisance
Herefordshire Council receives up to 1000 noise complaints a year, with a 50% increase over the summer months.

Report noise nuisance
If you find loud music, parties and barking dogs keeping you awake at night, call the out of hours noise team on 01432 261761. We will be on call over the summer from 9pm to 2am every Friday and Saturday evening, and August bank holiday Sunday.

Be a good neighbour this summer
Follow these top tips to keep the summer fun for everyone:

Parties and gatherings
Always be respectful towards your neighbours and their family, particularly if they have to get up for work the next day. Neighbours are less likely to have a problem with a party if they know about it in advance and what time it will finish. Remember noise from the garden travels further, so make plans to go inside later in the evening and encourage your guests to keep their voices down.
Stereos and TVs
Position the TV and speakers away from your neighbour’s wall – raised off the floor if possible. Keep the volume low as bass frequencies carry further, or use headphones if you like your music loud
Constant barking or whining from a dog can be disturbing to neighbours, especially in the summer when people (and dogs) spend more time outside. Dogs may bark because they are lonely or unhappy; if you are going away and your dog is being checked on by a dog sitter, leave a contact number with your neighbours just in case of problems.
Don’t mow your lawn or start DIY too early or late - you may be an early riser or a night owl, but others may not be! Noisy DIY activities should be kept to a minimum amount of time, or pre-warn neighbours about lengthy DIY work. When buying new power tools, look for the Quiet Mark Award which can help you choose quieter equipment.
Make sure the music in your car isn’t disturbing others when you are parked up or waiting for someone. Check that your car alarm works properly and if not, get it mended quickly. Be considerate when carrying out car repairs and make sure you don’t start your work too early or too late.
Leave a house key and contact number with a neighbour - they can contact you if the house alarm goes off while you are away.
Regularly monitor and maintain noisy equipment that can be heard from outside your premises, especially if they operate through the night. When there is less traffic on the roads, low frequency and machinery noises can become louder.

Timeline Photos

The Food Hygiene Rating Scheme (FHRS) in England, Wales and Northern Ireland helps consumers choose where to eat out or shop for food by giving them information about the hygiene standards in restaurants, takeaways and food shops.

HEREFORD - Ratings taken on 01 July 2017 from both Scores On The Doors and the Food Standards Agency.

Chinese | Indian | Kebab | Thai restaurants and take-aways with their hygiene ratings of 5 Very Good, 4 Good and 3 Generally Satisfactory:

Hereford's Top Rated Below:

Jamals Kebab House Bridge Street, Hereford, Rated 5
Spice Minister Widemarsh Street, Hereford, Rated 5
Marygold Union Street Hereford Rated 5
Thai Gallery Broad Street Hereford Rated 5
Zulfi's Widemarsh Street, Hereford, Rated 5
Hereford Charcoal Grill Commercial Road Hereford, Rated 5
Hum-Ming Garden, Foley Street Hereford Rated 5
City Gates Take-Away Chilton Square, Hereford, Rated 5
Atlantic Fish & Kebab Bar Holme Lacy Road Hereford Rated 5
Golden River Union Street, Hereford, Rated 4
Golden Galleon Commercial Road Hereford Rated 4
Summer Palace Widemarsh Street, Hereford, Rated 4
Mr Wong & The Mermaid The Oval, Hereford, Rated 4
Simply Thai Kitchen Widemarsh Street Hereford Rated 4
New Jasmine House Commercial Road, Hereford, Rated 4
New Mee Mei House St Martins Street, Hereford, Rated 4
New Lucky House Holmer Street, Hereford, Rated 4
Wing Sing Bartonsham Road, Hereford Rated 4
Jalsagor St Owen Street Hereford Rated 4
Marmaris Kebab Union Street Hereford Rated 4
New Chop Suey Bar Eign Street, Hereford, Rated 3
The Glass Tandoori Commercial Road Hereford Rated 3
New Silver Dragon Chilton Square, Hereford, Rated 3
Razbari Eign Street Hereford Rated 3
Nine & Nine Widemarsh Street Hereford Rated 3
Manor Fish Bar and Chinese Peregrine Close Hereford Rated 3
Perfect Fried Chicken & Pizza Commercial Road Hereford Rated 3

Chinese | Indian | Kebab | Thai restaurants and take-aways with their hygiene ratings of 2 Improvement Necessary or 1 Major Improvement Necessary

Hereford's Worst Rated Below:

The Taste Of Raj St Owen Street, Hereford, Rated 1
2J Takeaway Union Street, Hereford, Rated 1
Ruby Chinese Takeaway Union Street, Hereford, Rated 1
Mowchak Commercial Road, Hereford, Rated 1
Munchies Commercial Road, Hereford, Rated 1
The Lotus East Street, Hereford, Rated 1
Sweet Chilli Bridge Street, Hereford, Rated 1
New Canton House Bridge Street, Hereford, Rated 2
Planet Buffet Commercial Road, Hereford, Rated 2
Thai on Wye West Street Hereford Rated 2

Hereford Police raids - Taste of Raj visited no illegals working but one stay upstairs. Big issues in the kitchens, advice, Personally, I WOULD NOT EAT THERE!

Flats above Jalsagar and other places owned by them visited - no illegals but issues about unlicensed HMO (house of multi occupancy)

Marygold visited passed with flying colours - kitchens exceptionally clean

Photos from Hereford Voice's post

Thank you to Councillors Tracy Bowes, Derek Preedy, Neil Hooper, with Mandy Preedy and a local chap called Mark all part of the Glastonbury Close action day today. Great efforts today especially in this heat, credit where credit is due.

Photos from Hereford Voice's post

I cannot help but notice that more and more commercial properties are having a change of use to become residential. Personally, I would prefer to see an empty property being used however, for me, it is about finding that balance between satisfying the need for homes or allowing the constant shrinking of Hereford's commercial properties.

One of my concerns is, if the council allow the change of use from commercial to residential to often, how long will it be before residents start to complain about the 'business's next door', being to noisy or about smells, lights, people, traffic etc...

I think that this conversion in Whitecross Road next to the salon looks terrible.

Also here are a few before and after photographs

Photos from Hereford Voice's post

We would like to thank the Glass Tandoori Hereford for their continued support. If you love Indian food then this restaurant is a must!

Check out their latest menu here.

What is your favourite dish?

Glass Tandoori
Commercial Road
Tel (01432) 276633

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After 10 years of DJing in Play Nightclub Ian Davies is joining The New Venue.

Remember where you heard it first!

After 10 years of DJing in Play Nightclub Ian Davies is joining The New Venue.

Remember where you heard it first :)

Herefordshire Council’s electoral services have published the ‘Statement of Persons Nominated’, which details the constituency candidates standing for the UK General Election on 8 June 2017.

North Herefordshire Constituency:

Ellie Chowns – The Green Party
Arthur St John Devine – Independent
Jeanie Falconer – Liberal Democrats
Sasha Rose Alicia Norris – Independent
Roger William Page – Labour Party
Bill Wiggin – The Conservative Party

Hereford and South Herefordshire Constituency:

Anna Coda – Labour Party
Lucy Ann Hurds – Liberal Democrats
Jim Kenyon – Independent
Jesse Norman – The Conservative Party
Gwyn James Price – UK Independence Party (UKIP)
Diana Stella Toynbee – The Green Party

The deadline to register to vote in the General Election is 22 May 2017. Postal and proxy votes can be requested online until 23 May 2017.

Jim Kenyon Actually Loves Herefordshire

Jim Kenyon Actually Loves Herefordshire


The golf day is being held on Saturday, May 13 between 9am and 5pm.

To get involved, contact the golf club. To donate directly to the charity, visit

Mayor Jim Kenyon

I think our Mayor Jim Kenyon should stick to opening events rather than being one lol

A great night at the Mayor Last Ball.

Timeline Photos

The Mayor strutting his stuff on the dance floor #jimkenyon #hereforyou #instagram #hereford #herefordvoice #igers

Timeline Photos

Quick selfie with my mate the Mayor of Hereford @jimofhereford

Alberta Guest House - Life in Hereford

Staying up to date with all the goings on in this magnificent area of the country