06:00 July 16, 2022
It’s easy to be cynical and complain about the things we don’t like about our community, council or government. It sometimes feels like one of Britain’s national sports!
Many of our complaints are fair comments and sometimes it can feel like there is a lot to complain about.
If we want to make North Somerset a better place to live, learn, work and play, we need to tackle the issues head on and be honest about them.
But we should also try to remember that despite how we all feel sometimes, good things happen every day.
Council crews fill the equivalent of over 300 potholes each week in North Somerset to help keep our roads and pavements in good condition.
Every day our waste and recycling teams are on the streets collecting thousands of tonnes of material and, together with the commitment of residents, helping us achieve one of the highest recycling rates in England.
Seven days a week, throughout the year, hundreds of the most vulnerable people receive community meals delivered to their homes – and receive a welfare check to boot.
Our children’s services teams support hundreds of children in care and children in need every day to help them get the most out of their lives.
Our events and economic development teams work every day to support community events, businesses and job creation.
Council staff are working with landlords, housing associations and developers to address the housing crisis and provide more affordable housing for local people.
We’ve created a Cost of Living Task Force to provide targeted assistance so those struggling with rising costs can get the help they need.
Council teams have already paid around £10million in energy rebates over the past few weeks.
In this context, our planners and climate change experts strive to provide long-term solutions to the major challenges related to sustainable growth in the future.
We plant new trees, encourage biodiversity and try to protect important sites from overdevelopment.
Away from day-to-day services, many larger projects are also underway.
The Nailsea and Clevedon library buildings are receiving investment and improvements. In Clevedon, as part of a £250,000 scheme to improve the building, and in Nailsea to secure a new location for the library and provide investment to create better space.
Leisure improvements have included over £1million invested in our leisure centers in Portishead, Nailsea and Clevedon to help keep these venues in good condition.
In Weston, work to clean up and re-open the popular Marine Lake has been completed and we are now starting to improve the neglected Victorian shelters on the waterfront and are looking to do more to make our open spaces greener and cleaner.
We also have the world’s first attraction See Monster soon to open at Tropicana.
Working with town and parish councils, voluntary and community groups and a range of business partners, North Somerset has an incredible force of people focused on getting things done.
We don’t get everything, of course, or we don’t have the money or the powers we need to do everything we want. But good things are happening every day to make North Somerset a better place.
Councilor Steve Bridger, Leader of North Somerset Council
Councilor Mike Bell, Deputy Leader of North Somerset Council