Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council

Big plans, bright future

We are expecting some downtime to the Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council website and associated websites this weekend due to essential maintenance work. We are sorry for any inconvenience.

Week Commencing 5 February 2018

Monday 5 February 2018

Attended the Hand in Hand Activities – Cycling Without Age Initiative event at John Whitehead Park, The Causeway, Billingham


With Pernille Vederso Bussone, Ole Kassow and Allison Watson-Shields at the hub in Whitehead Park Billingham

It gave us great pleasure to be invited to the Cycling Without Age Event in Whitehead Park, Billingham as this was an informal opportunity to raise awareness and aim to deliver the project to residents of the Borough of Stockton on Tees. Cycling Without Age aims to deliver ‘wind in their hair’ opportunities to older people and people with disabilities.

The initiative tries to tackle social isolation that affects so many older people with limited mobility, by arranging for volunteers to take them on bike rides using a bespoke bike called a Trishaw. By bringing people together in this way it helps to build stronger communities and allows for older people to be more engaged and active.


As snug as a bug in a rug

Hand in Hand activities are currently fundraising a Trishaw that will allow it to bring the Cycling Without Age initiative to Stockton. The Trishaw is a specially designed bicycle with a two-seat carriage at the front. The rider is positioned on the saddle behind them, where they can peddle and steer the bike. For difficult terrains an electric motor is fitted to overcome energy sapping peddling of the rider. 

Cycling Without Age is a movement started in 2012 by Ole Kassov from Denmark which set out to tackle the social isolation endured by elderly people as a consequence of their limited mobility. I am told by Ole that there are Trishaw’s in 32 different countries and are opening many more Chapters throughout the world to support communities. In Copenhagen alone there are 10 districts that are using Trishaw’s as a means of transport for isolated people.


The weather wasn’t so good but they enjoyed the ride.

Allison Watson-Shields, project director, commented that Hand in Hand Activities are what is called a ‘registered affiliate’ of Cycling Without Age, which means they have been granted the privilege of starting a Chapter of CWA in the local area. They are building relationships with potential beneficiaries and developing a scheme of local volunteers to take people on bike rides out of their homes and back into their communities.

By introducing this scheme into Stockton Borough they will, Build stronger communities, tackle issues of social isolation amongst the elderly, disabled and their carers, and create more engaged and active citizens.


This lady said it had been one of the best days out in a long time and it was all down to the Trishaw

Many comments were made from the elderly and disabled people who used the Trishaw at the event, they said the Trishaw vehicle was a positive step to motivate people to visit friends or get out into the townships instead of cooped up in their homes most of the time.  

We wish Allison the best of luck on her project delivery, and we support her wholeheartedly in what she is trying to achieve, for the benefit of vulnerable people and their community. I hope that with the support of the communities, it will flourish, and enrich many people’s lives.


Wednesday 7 February 2018

The Mayor met the LGC Judges at Municipal Buildings, Church Road, Stockton

We are delighted that our Council has been shortlisted for the LGC Council of the Year Award, it is a prestigious national award and it would be a great recognition for all the hard work achieved and give us more confidence that we are doing the right things for our people and communities of our Borough.

The final decision on who gets the award depends on the four LGC Judges who arrived at the front entrance of the Municipal Building where I greeted, and welcomed them to the Borough, then took them into our main reception area.

They were also greeted by Mike McGrother, our Council’s creative partner who delivered a special welcome for the judges. With Adult Choir members and SBC staff positioning themselves around the reception and stairwell areas singing to’ Caravan of Love’ -  A Beautiful South number. Then from a wheelie bin popped out another member of the choir in harmony with the rest of the chorus followed by children of Hartburn Primary School popping out from behind the reception area marching to the front of the choir and in harmony completed the welcome.

It was a welcome of all welcomes and I must say it impressed the LGC Judges, who applauded the welcome event.


Mike McGrother with choirs


The Wheelie Bin man



Judges captivated by the welcome

From that exciting moment it was all down to our Senior Executives and business partners to deliver the message of why Stockton Borough Council is deserving of this prestigious award. 

We shall see in the next few weeks if we were successful or not. Fingers crossed.


Thursday 8 February 2018

The mayor was to attend the Lantern Parade at Tilery School at St Ann’s Terrace Stockton-on-Tees

 Cancelled due to poor weather.


Friday 9 February 2018

Attended the Mayor of South Tyneside Charity Valentines Night at Dalton Suite, Customs House, South Shields


South Tyneside Mayors Charity Dinner

It was with the invitation from the Mayor and Mayoress of South Tyneside that we were invited to ‘Valentines Night’. The evening took place in the beautiful Dalton Suite at the Customs House in South Shields. There was a two course meal laid on for us and with other civics we enjoyed a wonderful evening listening to the talented Ruth Lambert Trio. We also participated in the raffle draw which was in aid of the Mayors Community charities, these being CLIC Sargent, Childrens Cancer, and Heart Foundation.

Unfortunately once again we missed out on the prizes.


With other civics from Durham, Newcastle and Gateshead

We thanked Olive Punchion, Mayor, and Mary French Mayoress for a really good evening and hoped that they continue their brilliant charity work for a long time to come. The entertainment from the Ruth Lambert Jazz trio was great to listen to, their jazz playing and style of singing brought back memories of when I was a lad visiting the Coatham Jazz club in Redcar, Kenny Ball, Acker Bilk, and the likes, those were the days.


The Ruth Lambert Trio


Sunday 11 February 2018

Attended the Chairman of Richmondshire’s Civic Service at St Cuthbert’s Church, Colburn Lane, Colburn


St Cuthbert’s Church in Colburn Lane, Colburn, Richmondshire



Charities and Raffles

It was with great delight that we were invited to the Richmondshire and District Council Civic Service by Angie Dale the Chairman of the Council. We were also pleased to join other civics for the service including Barry Dodd, Lord Lieutenant of North Yorkshire and Simon Wrightson, High Sheriff of North Yorkshire, Mayor and Consort of Darlington, Chairman of NYCC, Selby DC Chairman and Hambleton DC Chairman. In the course of the afternoon we were welcomed by Angie Dale and an introduction to the service.

The service started with the hymn ‘Guide me O Thou Great Redeemer’ followed by Confession and Absolution: delivered by the Reverend Andrew Cromarty. The first reading Isaiah 40 : 1-11 God’s words of encouragement to his people, was read by Councillor Lorraine Hodgson, then followed the hymn ‘Meekness and majesty’ sung by all. The second reading: Luke 10: 25-37, Parable of the Good Samaritan, was read by Councillor Angie Dale, followed by the song ‘My Prayer’ sung by Helen Stevens. 

The sermon was delivered by Mr Keith Hall with respect to the Gospels of Jesus Christ and the Good Samaritan, prolific words. We then sang hymn ‘Make me a channel of your peace’. We then had prayers delivered by the reverend Andrew Cromarty for the districts, its communities, its leaders, and for all who care for the welfare of its inhabitants. The final hymn ‘I, the Lord of the sea and sky’ was sung by all, following this was The Blessing delivered by Andrew Cromarty and finally we all sang The National Anthem.

Back in the church Hall after a five minutes’ walk from the church, in the freezing cold, we were welcomed with a hot cup of tea and some delicious buns. Angie thanked everyone for coming to the service and participating in her charity raffle. The charity donations go towards the Chairman’s chosen charities:  Great North Air Ambulance, The Yorkshire Air Ambulance; Catterick, Richmond & Colburn Community Libraries, and Friends of Garget Walker House. Angie also thanked her friends for helping to organise the refreshments and setting up the Hall which was much appreciated.

At our departure we thanked Angie and her friends for the enjoyment of the day and wished her well for her continued support of her charities. 


Angie with Barry Dodd, Lord Lieutenant of North Yorkshire and Simon Wrightson, High Sheriff of North Yorkshire