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Home to School Transport Review Set for Discussion

A revised version of the Home to School Transport Policy for pupils across Denbighshire looks set to be discussed next month.
The current Home to School Transport Policy came into force from September 2015, after agreement by Council in 2014; with a review of the policy planned after 12 months of operation. Councillor Eryl Williams, Cabinet Lead Member for Education, said: “The Council recognises thatwere pockets of concern regarding certain elements of the current policy and we have addressed these concerns as and when they have arisen.The Council agreed when it implemented the policy that it would be reviewed after one year of operating.That review has now taken place and has taken into consideration feedback from schools, parents, councillors and advice through legal discussions.
“The current policy states that home to school transport will be provided to the nearest suitable school.Some concern has been raised in some communities about this issue, and it is now being proposed that school transport to secondary schools will be based on nearest suitable school or whether the pupil attended a designated primary feeder school. Transport on the basis of feeder will be provided under discretionary arrangements.
“Clarity is also proposed relating to pick up points and hazardous routes, with a previously separate guidance note being incorporated into the latest policy.
“As with the current policy, the Council would continue to provide free transport to the nearest suitable Welsh language or Faith school, if this was the parental / carers preference”. Proposed amendments to the policy will be discussed by members of Denbighshire’s Communities Scrutiny Committee on February 2nd, with the intention of having the required consultation period after its finalisation.

Ann Jones Welcomes “Brown Sign” Tourism Boost to Vale of Clwyd

Following the successful promotion of other tourist areas across Wales by the use of Brown Signs directing visitors to key tourist attractions, Ann Jones is pleased that, following further work with the Welsh Government, a new sign will be placed on junction 27 of the A55, the St Asaph junction. The new sign will promote St. Asaph Cathedral, Rhuddlan Castle and Denbigh Castle which are all valued tourist attractions in the Vale of Clwyd and will bring further tourists in to these towns.
This is following work by representatives from Rhyl, Rhuddlan and Denbigh Town Councils and St Asaph City Council, together with those from Rhuddlan and Denbigh Castles and St Asaph Cathedral.
Ann Jones AM said “The tourist offer of the outstanding Vale of Clwyd for a long time has been the jewel in our crown of tourism which many tourists stumble across. This sign will attract many more visitors to our area and hopefully prove a real boost to the visitor numbers. I am delighted that this will sign will direct tourists to our delightful attractions throughout the Vale of Clwyd.”
Councillor Colin Hardie, Mayor of St. Asaph, said , “The provision of a brown sign indicating to tourists the route through the beautiful Vale of Clwyd and numerous places of interest, including the Cathedral, is long overdue and a really good piece of news to start the New Year. St. Asaph City Council and its neighbours have been campaigning for this for years and the provision of a sign on the A55 St. Asaph at junction 27 should help boost tourism and put the area on the map. The news also comes at a time when exciting new plans for the Cathedral are aimed at providing an improved experience for visitors and together, these moves should help boost the local economy.

Council Commits to Welsh Language Committee Structure

Denbighshire County Council has re-affirmed its commitment to the Welsh Language by establishing a formal Welsh Language Steering Group that will provide guidance and advice on the future direction of the language within the authority.
Committee will be a formal committee with meetings held in public and agendas and reports available on the Council’s website. It will monitor progress being made with the Welsh Language Standards, as well as its Welsh Language Strategy and associated action plans.
Council already has an advisory group in place, made up of councillors and staff. The latest development means that the Welsh Language Steering Group will form part of the constitution, with clearer lines of monitoring performance and scrutiny.