Agenda item

Leader's Announcements


Councillor Phil Davies informed that there were two pieces of good news to report.


(a)  Municipal Journal Awards 2015 - Trading Standards and Environmental Health’ category


Councillor Bernie Mooney reported that the success of pioneering efforts to help promote healthy eating among families living in some of Wirral’s most disadvantaged areas had helped the Council’s Trading Standards Team to scoop a major national award.


Wirral Council had unanimously won the support of the three judges over seven other finalists in the ‘Trading Standards and Environmental Health’ category at the Municipal Journal Awards, which were presented at a glittering awards ceremony in London on 18 June 2015.


The honour was a fitting reward for those behind the ‘Takeaway for a Change’ and ‘Eat Well Wirral’ campaigns which were part of the Council’s commitment to reducing the health inequalities between the most deprived and most affluent areas of the borough.


Eat Well Wirral and Takeaway for a Change had been growing hand in hand over the last couple of years. Thanks to funding from Public Health, officers initially had run a pilot of the schemes in Rock Ferry, which involved engaging with a primary school, children’s centre and takeaways located in the heart of the community.


Officers, supported by nutritionists and health care professionals, provided educational and support sessions for families and children; advising, supporting and guiding them to make healthy meal choices and opt for healthier options when in the supermarket or eating fast food.


Local takeaway owners had been given grants and supported to change cooking practices and ingredients to make their offer healthier; the new meals were then tried and enjoyed by the local community thanks to vouchers offering them ‘free healthier meals’.


The pilot had been a great success and the Council had been invited to share their work at the Annual Public Health Conference in 2014.  An application for further grant funding had been approved earlier in the year which enabled the projects to expand to more schools across the borough over the next two years.


Councillor Bernie Mooney praised the hard work carried out by the Team who delivered the projects, particularly Nicola Pulford who was the lead officer who designed and implemented the original pilot work.  It had been a marvellous achievement and well deserved in recognition of all the hard work.  The success of the pilot project would be the platform to roll these initiatives out to other areas of the borough where child and adult obesity was a community issue the Council was concerned about. Investing in long term projects like this to deliver sustainable long term health benefits for our most deprived communities was the way forward for the Council.


Councillor Phil Davies congratulated the Team on its fantastic achievement and the national recognition it had received as a result.


(b)  2015 ALARM Risk Awards


Councillor Ann McLachlan reported that Simon Hutchinson the Deputy Risk and Insurance Officer had won the Professional of the Year award.  He had been presented with this award at the ALARM Risk Awards Dinner on 22 June 2015 at Aston University in Birmingham.  Simon had been instrumental in shaping recent government policy.  Councillor Ann McLachlan congratulated the Team on their achievements.


Councillor Phil Davies added his own congratulations to Simon and the Corporate Risk Team he informed the Cabinet that it was excellent that Wirral was receiving national recognition for its risk management and that other Councils were now adopting Wirral’s best practice.  He informed that corporate risk was difficult to get right and that the Team did an excellent job.