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Councillor Jan Jackson

Ward: Stalybridge North

Annual Report of Activities 2015/16

Participation at Council Meetings and Panels

I have attended Full Council and spoke on several occasions, as records evidence in support of Motions put forward. Speaking has provided me with opportunity to present personal testimonies from case work referrals. It is my intention to bring more cases to council meetings which demonstrates the importance of such Motions being passed.

In my role as Deputy Chair on the Place Scrutiny Panel I have been able to develop my chairing skills and deputised for the Chair at a meeting.

Supporting the Chair has allowed me the privilege of meeting for briefings with officers before panel meetings and attend the Greater Manchester Scrutiny Chairs meeting to share good practices. Recommendations made have been implemented to enable improvements to the service delivered. Executive Elected Members have been interviewed and challenged.

As a member on Speaker's Panel I have gained knowledge in planning matters and been influential in the decision making process.

Participation at District Assemblies

The format of District Assembles has increased attendees. Residents of Stalybridge and Mossley have been encouraged to challenge the council/councillors in a constructive way and discussions have taken place with opinions and views being shared. I have provided a voice for the vulnerable people I represent and raised relevant concerns relating to Stalybridge residents e.g. Police reductions, cuts to services etc.

I have been involved engaging with community groups applying for Participatory Budget funds.

Participation on Outside Bodies and Partnerships

Not holding a position on any outside bodies, I have focussed on working in partnership with local community groups, businesses and organisations. Putting pressure on New Charter to complete the Casa Blanca site in Stalybridge Town Centre, lobbying GMPF to develop the Stalybridge West and meeting with investors to locate their business in the town. This has been achieved to some extent.

An aspiration of some derelict land becoming a community garden on Harrison Street/West Street has come to fruition and about to be launched. Demonstrating the strength of working in partnership with The Big Local, TMBC and New Charter.

Embedding myself in Heyrod has been a highlight. Support provided at The Whit Friday Band Contest and helping to raise money for the event to take place this year and next.

Nominating Tameside Community Voices has been a mission this year for a Queens Award for community service. The outcome of the application will be announced in May/June.

Recognising and volunteers in our communities and working with them to benefit the residents of Stalybridge North is my aim.

Attending resident meetings at Blandford Court with Accent and the Police, PACT meetings and volunteering at local events is one of the duties I consider to be important in the role of a local councillor.

Participation on School Governing Bodies

Working with the 5 primary schools and West Hill continues to be a priority. Supporting Chairs of governing bodies and meeting regularly with Head Teachers to discuss attainment and performance. Fantastic news that Millbrook Primary School is in the top 88 schools in the country for outstanding performance in Key Stage 2 SATs.

As academies are being imposed, a strong voice in the Council is needed.

Addressing Schools Councils in the Ward and discussing democracy is also an important part of my job.

Constituency Work

Attending resident meetings e.g. Blandford Court, Co-op Carrbrook Residents, RASH, Heyrod. Building up good working relations to assist and support.

Working with CVAT and BME groups, signposting constituents to access the right services within the council has been one of my greatest highlights of the year.

Organising the Stalybridge Christmas party for 90 residents is an all year task. Approaching sponsors and raising monies to obtain the event and getting pledges towards the raffle.

Going into residential homes, assisting at Christmas parties and fetes, waiting on at tables etc – St. Georges Residential Home, Kendal House, Carson House. Supporting by volunteering and raising money for the Rotary Club. Whether it is serving pints at the annual Beer Festival or collecting for Santa, a Councillors work is never done.

Working closely with Neighbourhood PCSOs and the Police to ensure the safety of residents has been fulfilling and continues to be challenging with cuts to the police service.

During the course of the year I have met with the Carrbrook Institute group to assist with fund raising events e.g. band contest.

Regular surgeries have been held in Stalybridge Library and other locations in the ward to give an opportunity for constituents to attend.

I have accepted invites to open days, Duke of Edinburgh Award evenings and have been honoured to present an award this year to The Most Improved Pupil for Three Peaks at West Hill School. In addition to attending fund raising events for the group.

Supporting local churches and attending Crowswood Residential meetings. I have used the talent and skills of residents to assist on projects in other areas of the ward.

Dividing my time to work fairly and equally with all partnerships, resident associations, schools, colleges, churches and community groups to the benefit of all.

Members Advice Surgeries

Holding regular surgeries twice a month and setting up ‘roving surgeries’ going out to the community to meet my constituents.

I have undertaken roving surgeries by being in the area to discuss issues of concern.

Training and Development

As a regular attendee at Member training sessions throughout the year, I have been educated and provided with the tools to enable me to fulfil my role as a local Councillor.

Seminars have been attended and I have undertaken courses to obtain the tools to make me a better councillor.

Achievements during the Year

• Organising campaign days in the ward

• Working closely with Youth workers, supporting their cause

• Nominating 2 people for Pride of Tameside (community activities)

• Organising the Christmas Party for Stalybridge and attending others in the ward, waiting on tables and ‘mucking in’

• Offering support and advice to Head Teachers

• Talking to parents and pupils at a Leaving presentation

• Encouraging new ward members to attend the Ward meetings and CLPs

• Talking to pupils and young people about politics in schools

• Supporting Tameside Young Carers and elected members with their projects

• Big Local involvement assisting with agendas and minutes

• Supporting local community groups at special functions i.e. Halloween party, Easter events etc.

• Communicating with groups which are active within the borough and offering assistance

• Forwarding the names of residents who are deserving of recognition in our communities

• Contributing to making the ward cleaner, environmental friendly, green and safe

• Assistance provided when requested

• Contacting partnerships and agencies on a regular basis

• Welcoming new businesses into the Town, offering support and signposting people, tweeting when necessary

• Going along to every Farmers Market in Stalybridge, supporting our market so we don’t lose it!

Organising 2 public meetings - Kendal House, Heyrod Community Centre to hold First Bus to account re service delivery

Any other comments

Who said being a Councillor is easy? The role is forever changing but the rewards are fulfilling and I look forward to delivering a service to residents of Stalybridge North in the coming year.

My aim continues to fall into different categories: support, encourage, advise and stand shoulder to shoulder with my constituents to address their needs.

This was evident recently when a bus service was removed from the timetable, affecting residents residing in Heyrod. The bus company was held to account at an organised public meeting.

The journey is long but I am joined by amazing people on the way, each one with a story to tell.

I know my communities and more importantly they know me.