Monday, 31 October 2016

Charges introduced to help protect bluebell wood from crowds

The National Trust are introducing visitor charges at their Dockey Wood location in Ashridge, Hertfordshire in a bid to control the crowds which flock to the see the beautiful carpets of bluebells covering the ground in May.
Thousands of people visit the woods every spring to walk through the carpets of blue flowers but this leads to large areas being trampled underfoot, or "chaotic parking" on verges in the local area, damaging other plants.
The National Trust is introducing a fee of £3 for an adult to visit the woods, and £1 for a child. This is the first year charges have been in place, and it is said they will help to pay for rangers and the annual £500,000 costs of upkeep.
A spokesperson from the National Trust commented: "At weekends during bluebell season traffic queues build up and people park chaotically, causing real damage to verges and wayside plants.
"Last year lots of people told us that they thought we should have a much greater staff presence at the wood during the busiest weekends, and make a small charge to help meet some of our costs."
The fees will apply only for the first two weekends of May, when the majority of visitors come to see the bluebells at their peak.
A new route has been laid out to help avoid the trampling of the flowers, and rangers will be on hand to help direct visitors.

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Monday, 24 October 2016

Crisis over - Carlisle biscuit factory operational again

The UK's biscuit lovers will be hugely relieved to hear that a factory in Carlisle which produces several national favourites such as McVitie's ginger nuts and Crawford's custard creams is back to full production levels after it suffered substantial flood damage back in December.
United Biscuits revealed that it was necessary to clear around 40 million litres of water and 540 tonnes of debris from the factory site. It took hundreds of staff, suppliers and contractors working to clean the site and repair machinery before production could be resumed.
Electrical equipment and ovens had to be repaired or replaced before the factory could be brought back to full operation and start producing biscuits again.
The period of downtime resulted in a national biscuit shortage, leading to many anxious customers searching store shelves.
Manufacturing Director of United Biscuits, Mark Taylor, said: "Rather than buy another pack, they actually hunted down the store manager, harangued him for 10 minutes about why ginger nuts weren't there and left the shop without buying anything."
"It was a fantastic team effort to clean the place up, repair it and get it back in great shape" he added.
"We can announce officially, the biscuit crisis is over."
The storms Desmond and Eva caused damage to many homes and businesses across Cumbria, Lancashire and Yorkshire in December.

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Monday, 17 October 2016

Housing no.1 concern for Londoners, poll indicates

According to a recent poll of Londoners carried out by ComRes for BBC London, housing has become the number one concern for those living in the capital.
The last time the poll was carried out in 2012, jobs were considered the highest priority, followed by crime, transport and then housing.
This year, after housing, the highest ranked issues for Londoners were immigration, security against terrorism, and healthcare.
2,062 adults were questioned as part of the poll. Londoners were also asked what they considered to be an affordable cost for a two bedroom home in London. Those responding thought this to be £208,000 to buy, or £646 per month to rent.
However, the actual average selling figure for a terraced house in London last year was £569,000, indicated by the Office for National Statistics. The median monthly rent in London was £1,400 in the year 2014-15, according to the Valuation Office Agency.
24,620 new houses were built in London in 2015, the Department of Communities and Local Government figures show.
Senior consultant at ComRes, Adam Ludlow, commented on the results: "While this poll could not be compared directly to the one carried out four years ago, the relative shift in the priority given to housing would seem to suggest people see it as more important now."

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Monday, 10 October 2016

Happy Easter!

We'd like to take this opportunity to wish all website visitors, and of course our trusted traders, a very happy Easter bank holiday weekend from all at
The weather looks like it may be kind to us, so whether you're planning a short break, some time working on the garden, or just relaxing at home with the family, we hope you have a great time.
If you have plans for home improvements, why not give yourself a restful weekend instead and contact a trusted trader to do a professional job for you this spring?

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Monday, 3 October 2016

Unexploded WW2 shells found on building site in Liverpool

Seven suspected unexploded shells from World War Two were found in the space of 24 hours on a building site in the Pall Mall area of Liverpool this week.
On Monday two shells were discovered in the ground by construction workers, before a third was found at 8:15 this morning. Three hours later a further four devices were found, when the previously cordoned area had been made accessible again by police.
Experts from the army bomb disposal team were called in to deal with the devices and an area 200m around the site was set up for public safety while the shells were removed. The cordoned off area, at the junction of Pall Mall and Leeds Road, has since been opened again.
The Army Explosive Ordnance Disposal team came to the conclusion that the five later shells were "empty", Merseyside Police reported.
The shells were originally thought to be bombs still capable of exploding, but are now considered to be "non-fused ammunition".
A police spokesman confirmed: "The construction company has now ceased work at the site and the Health and Safety Executive are on site."

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