Since the 2015 election, our challenges have been significant, however we have achieved much. When I look at what we have achieved during this period, we have balanced our budget, we are confident we can do so this year too, and we have minimised the cuts to our front line services.
Some noteworthy successes:
- Poole Early Years schools results improve: The Poole Early Years team is celebrating an increase in attainment for Poole children for the fourth year running.
- Ofsted director Bradley Simmons said: "At almost every key stage, Poole schools have performed above national levels ... This more consistent and sustained picture of improving achievement in Poole is testament to your hard work and that of your teams."
- Cllr Mike White, Cabinet member for education, said: “It is wonderful to see Poole’s youngest children being given such a positive start by our early years’ education provision. Every child deserves the best possible start in life.”
- Our capital projects are on time and on budget: The Council currently has 150 capital projects - and all of them are on time and on budget.
- We are building more beach huts: There is a huge demand for more beach huts along our seafront from Branksome Chine to Sandbanks, so we are building many more of them.
- We will invest more in our seafront: Council has decided to invest a further £1.79 million to improve the seafront infrastructure on our award-winning beaches - in addition to the £3.62 million we committed in 2015.
- Cllr John Rampton, Cabinet member for the environment, said: "Our Blue Flag beaches are a fantastic asset and it is vital that we invest to ensure their long-term future and that they remain a great place for residents and visitors to Poole."
- Poole now has Fairtrade Town status: Fairtrade is about better prices, decent working conditions, and fair terms of trade for farmers and workers around the world. Poole retailers and eateries have pledged to sell a number of Fairtrade products.
- Our beaches and parks win awards: Poole has 5 blue flag beaches and 3 green flag parks: Upton Country Park, Poole Park, and Hamworthy Park have once again been awarded the prestigious Green Flag Award for being some of the most beautiful open spaces across the UK.
- Cllr John Rampton said: “We are extremely proud of the wide variety and quality of green, open spaces across Poole, and they are truly deserved of the Green Flag Awards ... This recognition celebrates the extensive hard work of volunteers and council staff, which ensures that the parks remain places for residents and visitors to enjoy all year round.”
Cllr Janet Walton
Leader of the Council, Borough of Poole