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Executive Leader Cllr Brenda Warrington

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Councillor Brenda Warrington, Executive Leader of Tameside Council

A 2019 To Remember for Tameside

Thursday, 19 December 2019


It’s that time of year again. On behalf of Tameside Council I would like to wish you all a Happy Christmas and a Joyful New Year.

As I do every year, there are certain people whom I would ask you to keep in your thoughts over the Christmas period, those less fortunate; the residents who may be spending this time of year alone, or who are homeless, sick or vulnerable. Over the past few weeks we’ve been appealing to our residents to donate to our Christmas food bank collections, and many of you have been very generous indeed. By dropping off food at libraries, customer services, children centres and workplaces, you’ve helped us to fill up and distribute over 50 boxes to local foodbanks to support people in need. While I still despair of the fact that food banks exist in the fifth richest country in the world, the hard reality is that many people, including some residents in Tameside, need our help here and now. I’ve always believed that the strength of our communities is judged by how we treat those who most need a helping hand, and your charity and kindness has shown that Tameside’s community is strong indeed.

Another group that we should keep in our minds over the next couple of weeks are the people for whom Christmas is just another day on the job. While we sit down to our turkey dinner, the amazing professionals working in all areas of our NHS, our police, our fire and rescue services will keep ensuring that any emergencies are dealt with quickly and effectively. Please think as well of all the other workers, such as those in the care sector and the armed forces, who will also be spending their Christmas Day keeping many of the health and security services that we depend on running.

 

The end of the year is always a good time to look back at the triumphs and challenges of the previous twelve months. I think that 2019 will be remembered as the year where many of the seeds of investment and development we’ve planted in Tameside started bearing fruit. Tameside One has brought world-class customer service and learning facilities, along with thousands of staff and students, into the heart of Ashton-under-Lyne. Construction on the Denton Wellness Centre, the jewel in the crown of our £20 million transformation of our leisure services, is expected to be completed later this year, and building is well underway on the Ashton transport interchange, which will provide a state-of-the-art hub for public transport for travel within Tameside and beyond. Over the summer we applied for, and successfully received, formal accreditation as a Co-Operative council. This, combined with our ongoing progress in integrating health and social care in Tameside and Glossop, means that we’ve got a fantastic opportunity as we enter a new decade to transform how we design and deliver the vital services that so many of our residents rely upon.

A great example of how we’re doing this right now is the ongoing “Tameside Loves Reading” campaign. Since its launch in February, Tameside Loves Reading has brought together council officers, volunteers, schools and community groups to help to improve literacy levels in our children, giving them a solid foundation to achieve their potential in education and in life. We’ve now got over 180 volunteers reading with children in 46 schools. To mark the success of Tameside Loves Reading so far, we’ve put together a special festive video featuring local schoolchildren and frontline workers – from bin men to firefighters and police officers to midwives – to show how anyone, at any age, can enjoy reading for pleasure. You can watch the video on our YouTube page here, and I’d encourage anybody who wants to see the power that can be unleashed by ordinary people coming together for an extraordinary cause to watch it. 

My thanks go to everybody who has helped make our progress and success in 2019 possible. Let’s enjoy our Christmas holidays, and then come back with recharged batteries and new enthusiasm to make 2020 another year to remember in Tameside. 

 

Posted by: Executive Leader


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