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e-connect 25 January

Date published: 2024-01-25

Cllr Kevin Guy, Leader of Bath & North East Somerset Council

e-connect 25 January 2024

A message from Cllr Kevin Guy, Leader of Bath & North East Somerset Council

Next week we have a special cabinet meeting which will discuss our new Economic Strategy and also the next stages for our Local Plan, which, when adopted, will form the basis for determining planning applications until 2042.

In many ways, Bath and North East Somerset is a real success story. We have a fine World Heritage City with a thriving city centre and market towns and access to wonderful nature alongside two Universities and many significant local businesses. Our residents are highly qualified, and unemployment is low.

However, we know we need to generate more higher-wage jobs and tackle inequalities across our area. We also need more housing, particularly affordable housing, and better and more sustainable transport links.

The new Economic Strategy going before cabinet sets out a new approach which prioritises meeting the needs of residents and businesses whilst reducing impacts on our natural resources and environment.

To achieve this we need to work in partnership. Our Future Ambition Board (FAB), which brings together key partner organisations in the area, has adopted a Shared Vision for Bath with North East Somerset of a fair, green, creative and connected place. This sets the framework for the new Economic Strategy.

Alongside the new Economic Strategy we will also be discussing the Local Plan options report. This sets out options for land use and future development in our area including new housing and supporting infrastructure, and office, industrial and research and development spaces, all the things our area needs to thrive and prosper in a sustainable way. Again, this will help us deliver our Shared Vision.

If the report on the Local Plan is agreed, the next stage will be a consultation and it is important that we hear what people say about the options being put forward such as restricting the development of Purpose-Built Student Accommodation to on-campus locations only or to other allocated sites, which may lie outside of Bath.

You can watch the February 1 cabinet meeting on the council’s YouTube channel and more information about the development of the new local plan can also be found on the council’s website.

We are fast approaching the second anniversary of the war in Ukraine. Over the past two years many residents have been hosting families fleeing the conflict, communities have also been supporting displaced Afghan families. I am pleased that we have now been able to secure properties using Government funds to help a number of families who are here on resettlement and relocation programmes. They will soon have homes of their own which will provide short-term accommodation and also provide a long-term legacy of more affordable housing in Bath and North East Somerset. These properties will be available to individuals and families on our waiting list once Ukrainians and Afghans, on approved resettlement schemes, either return home or move on to other accommodation of their choosing.

Have a good weekend

Holocaust Memorial Day takes place on January 27 each year and remembers the six million Jews murdered during the Holocaust, alongside the millions of other people killed under Nazi persecution of other groups and in more recent genocides in CambodiaRwandaBosnia and Darfur.

At 8pm on January 27, there will be a Light The Darkness national moment. People across the nation are invited to light candles and put them safely in their window to remember those who were murdered for who they were and stand against prejudice and hatred today.

Support for resettled families in Bath & North East Somerset

Afghan and Ukrainian families fleeing conflict are set to move into seven of 22 Government-funded properties in Bath & North East Somerset under a national resettlement scheme.


Radstock roadworks – Please plan your journey

Bath & North East Somerset Council is advising people plan their journeys if travelling through Radstock due to the emergency repair of a gas leak by Wales & West Utilities coinciding with planned works, already under way, by the council to upgrade a pedestrian crossing.


Jobs and Economy boost for Bath & North East Somerset

Higher wages, boosted productivity, greener businesses and more affordable housing are at the heart of an ambitious strategy document being put before Bath and North East Somerset’s cabinet on February 1st.


Cabinet to consider options for future development across B&NES

Options for future development including new housing and supporting infrastructure, office, industrial and research and development spaces, in Bath & North East Somerset are set to go before councillors.


Work begins on new shopfronts and art installations at Keynsham’s Temple Street

Works to improve shop fronts and enhance Temple Street in Keynsham will continue this month as part of a regeneration scheme for the town centre.


Bath property owner fined for unauthorised work to listed building

A property owner who undertook unauthorised works to a Grade II* Listed building has been fined following a prosecution by Bath & North East Somerset Council’s planning enforcement team. 


Council meetings

Do you want to know about decisions being taken by the council and have your say? Please follow this link to the council’s calendar of meetings.

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Cost of living crisis

Worried about the cost of living? Help is out there. There is a dedicated Cost of Living Crisis section on Live Well B&NES, including: You can also get help from your supplier through the Priority Services Register. This is a free support service that makes sure extra help is available to people in vulnerable situations. Check the website to see if you’re eligible to register.
Help with the cost of living.
For people struggling to afford broadband or phone services, there are social tariffs available. Connecting Devon and Somerset (CDS) has a webpage with more information about social tariffs including eligibility requirements and how to apply Social tariffs - Connecting Devon and Somerset

CSE energy advice

Residents wanting to reduce their bills, insulate their homes or add energy efficiency measures can get guidance from trained energy experts on the first Thursday of every month from 11am to 2pm at a pop up in the Podium outside Bath Central Library.

Library services

Our Libraries offer a range of services, including the Library at Home service where we can bring the library to you and sensory spaces for children and young adults with sensory needs.

Employment support and skills



Achieve in B&NES provides a job and course search service for anybody wishing to enter the workplace or progress their career. There are free and funded courses from local providers.

We Work For Everyone

Looking for work and have a learning difficulty or learning disability, or you are autistic, we can help. Visit

Future Bright

Future Bright offers FREE career coaching, training and support. Visit the Future Bright website to find out more or call 01225 395555.

Employment & Skills Pod

The Employment & Skills Pod provides information, advice and guidance for residents who are unemployed, 18+ and would like support around employment. You can find out more on the achieve website.
Join the Employment & Skills Pod at Bath Central Library on Wednesday 31st January 10am – 12pm for their Skills for Work Volunteering Opportunities drop-in.

Health, wellbeing and support


Live Well B&NES

Live Well B&NES is a web-based resource providing information, signposting and support to Bath & North East Somerset residents.

Community Wellbeing Hub

The Community Wellbeing Hub opening hours are from Monday to Friday, 9am until 5pm. Call the Hub on 0300 247 0050 or text 07870 868368 or visit the website.

Bath Mind

Bath Mind is here for everyone living in B&NES. For more information, support resources and to self-refer, visit the website, or call our Access Community Mental Health Team: Freephone 0808 175 1369 or you can email.

Age UK

Age UK Bath & North East Somerset run specialised Dementia Groups in the district. These groups are a safe, fun environment for people to come for activities and friendship. Find out more here or call 01225 466135. You can also find out about digital support for people aged 55 and over. Email or visit

Sight loss support

Sight Support West of England provides emotional and practical support to help people adjust to living with sight loss. To find out more, or make an appointment please call  0117 3224885 or email. For more information on the full range of services, visit the website. For more useful information visit the RNIB website.

Domestic abuse

Southside provides help to people who live in Bath & North East Somerset who are at risk of domestic violence and abuse. The working hours are 9am-5pm Monday-Thursday, and 9am-4pm Fridays. Local support services can be found here.

Do you look after someone else?

If you support someone who has a disability, illness, mental health condition, addiction or who needs extra help as they grow older, support is available from Bath and North East Somerset Carers’ Centre. Freephone support line: 0800 038 8885 or email 9am-1pm, every weekday.

Public health

To keep up to date with the latest public health news stories across Bath and North East Somerset, including upcoming events, consultations  and other information, subscribe to the public health monthly newsletter. You can also browse previous editions of the public health newsletter.

Covid-19 and Flu booster walk-in clinics

There will be two more opportunities available for you to get your Covid-19 and Flu booster at our walk-in clinics this January, there is no need to book, just turn up.

When: Saturday 27th January 2024, 10am - 4pm
Where: St Chads Surgery, Midsomer Norton, BA3 2UN

Check if you are eligible
Covid-19 - Those eligible 5+

Flu - Eligible adults only
      - If you are pregnant
      - All Health and Social Care Workers

Find a walk-in Covid-19 vaccination clinic - Bath and North East Somerset, Swindon and Wiltshire ICB
Engaged and looking for a venue? Come to our Wedding Showcase 18 February 10:30am-2:30pm Guildhall, Bath. Speak to our registrars & view our suite of rooms, including the newly renovated Abbey Room.
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Date published: 2024-01-25

Cllr Kevin Guy, Leader of Bath & North East Somerset Council

Date published: 2024-01-25