Rough sleeping in the district reduced
The number of people sleeping rough in the New Forest is the lowest since 2015.
In 2019, up to 30 people per night were sleeping rough in the district in any one night, and this is now down to an average of 1 to 2 people per night.
Our homelessness service work with rough sleepers and partner agencies to ensure that people are safe, listened to, have the right support for their individual circumstances, and we often use innovative ways to support people.
Over 50 units of temporary accommodation are also now located in Blackfield, Ringwood, Ashley, Totton and Lymington, helping to prevent rough sleeping and homelessness, and ensuring that people are no longer temporarily housed far away from their support networks.
We’re here to support you if you’re struggling with finances, concerned about becoming homeless, or are rough sleeping. Find out more information at https://newforest.gov.uk/housing
Cultural strategy to be developed
We’re leading a partnership project to develop a cultural strategy to boost investment in the arts for the New Forest.
The strategy will promote wellbeing through the arts, such as comedy, music workshops, museums, theatre, galleries and design. It will also support businesses and enhance the district as a place to live, work and visit.
The New Forest has been identified as having low cultural investment and highlighted as one of 54 priority places by the Arts Council England. You can read more about the strategy, created in light of this, at https://newforest.gov.uk/article/3328/Cultural-strategy-to-be-developed-in-the-New-Forest
Discover the wide range of cultural organisations in the New Forest at https://www.folionewforest.org/
Garden waste price drop
You can now sign up to the garden waste collection service for the remainder of the collection year 2023 – 24 for the reduced cost of £34.50 for your first bag, and £18 for additional bags.
Collections take place fortnightly from Monday 3 July, and the subscription period will run up until the end of March 2024.
For more information and to subscribe, visit our website: https://newforest.gov.uk/gardenwaste
Please note subscriptions to the 2023 – 24 collection service will close on 30 September 2023, and there will be no further price drops for this years’ service.
Improve air quality this summer
This summer, one way to improve the quality of our air is by reducing or stopping the use of fire pits and bonfires in our gardens.
Fire pits and bonfires release harmful pollutants, which can cause respiratory issues and other health problems and damage our ecosystem.
Find more information on the Environment Centre’s website: https://environmentcentre.com/the-environment/clean-air/
Electric vehicle charging points
We have installed 41 electric vehicle charging points across our car parks for electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles.
As the number of electric and hybrid vehicles on the roads increase, we have grown the electric vehicle infrastructure to help meet demand. We will continue to monitor the usage of the electric vehicle charging points as part of our ongoing plans for charging points in our car parks.
You can find the electric vehicle charging points in our car parks in Brockenhurst, Fordingbridge, New Milton, Lymington, Lyndhurst, Ringwood, Totton, Hythe and Beaulieu, and in our coastal car parks in Milford on Sea and Barton on Sea.
Find out more on our website: https://newforest.gov.uk/article/1235/Electric-vehicle-charging
Barton beach public toilets
Work to replace the public toilets at Barton beach is underway and they are scheduled for reopening in August 2023.
The current toilets, installed in 2009, will be replaced with a slightly larger unit. There will be three unisex toilets, toilet facilities for people with disabilities, baby changing facilities, and a family room. There will also be an external shower, and water bottle filling unit.
While the existing building is removed and the new one is connected the toilets will be closed for a short time. The nearest alternative toilets are at Marine Drive and Barton Court Avenue junction.
Information about our public toilets at 23 locations in the district is on our website at: https://www.newforest.gov.uk/article/2846/Public-toilets
Hampshire County Council budget consultation
Hampshire County Council has a consultation to understand people’s views on options to help them deliver a balanced budget over the next two years.
You can have your say at https://www.hants.gov.uk/aboutthecouncil/haveyoursay/consultations/budgetconsultation
The budget consultation runs until 11:59pm on 23 July 2023.
Christchurch Bay and Harbour online consultation event
Share your views on proposals to manage coastal flood and erosion risk over the next 100 years, from Hengistbury Head Long Groyne to Hurst Spit, encompassing Christchurch Harbour.
Book your free ticket to join an online presentation and question and answer session.
27 June 2023, from 7:00 pm to 8:15 pm. https://twobays.net/have-your-say-on-draft-christchurch-bay-and-harbour-strategy/
Cost of living scam advice
HMRC is urging tax credits customers, who are renewing their tax credits claims, to be mindful of scammers. Criminals are using deadlines, like the tax credits renewal deadline on 31 July, to try and steal personal information.
Stay alert if you receive an email or text from someone who says they’re from HMRC and asks you to give personal information, such as your bank details, or asks you to urgently transfer money.
For more information, visit the Citizens Advice website: https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/consumer/scams/get-help-with-online-scams/
You can renew your tax credits on the GOV.UK website.