Milverton, Somerset
13/07/2024

Somerset Business Survey 2021

Economic Impacts of COVID-19 and Prospects for Recovery

Somerset’s five Local Authorities are jointly undertaking this vital survey to help us better understand and respond to local business needs, with a particular focus on the impacts that COVID-19 will have had on many businesses over the last 12 months.

By completing this survey, you will be providing much needed intelligence to help shape our approach to economic recovery in Somerset, including the support that businesses will be able to receive.

Should you wish to provide your details at the end of the survey, we will share the findings of this survey with you as soon as they are available. We may also be able to offer specific advice and support based on the responses you have given.

We know your time is precious, but the survey should take no more than 10 minutes to complete and your views could make a real difference.

Please be assured that your personal data will not be shared with anyone outside of Somerset’s local authorities and you will remain fully anonymous in any reporting.

Somerset Business Recovery Survey 2021

If you have questions about the survey or wish to provide additional feedback, please email somerseteconomicdevelopment@somerset.gov.uk.

West Somerset bike project expands into Taunton

The extremely successful ‘West Somerset Bike Project’ has gained additional funding from Somerset West and Taunton Council using money from the Hinkley Point C Fund which will allow it to continue to support the project in West Somerset and expand into the ‘Taunton Deane’ area.

The project started from a simple idea; match someone who was able to donate a bike (that they did not use any more) and give it to someone who needed it. So that the bike was safe, a bike mechanic checked the bike over, made small repairs, added a helmet, lock and lights and the bike was ready to go! So far, the project has shared 100 bikes and now there is funding for 40 more.

The funding for this round of bikes is being offered to people who need a bike to access work, education, or training. That might mean needing a bike to attend an interview, take up a job offer or attend college or an apprenticeship.

The project wants to ensure that the bikes go to those people who need them most and are hoping to harness and work alongside the amazing work of agencies across the Somerset West and Taunton area to ensure that anyone who might need transport can be referred easily. An email to Izzy Silvester izzy@Somersetrcc.org.uk with the contact details of anyone interested in accessing the scheme will mean that someone will be in touch to discuss their needs. It is important that they meet the criteria for needing the bike to access education, work, or training.

For the project to work, we still need donation of bikes (of reasonable quality) so if you know of anyone who has a bike that is unused at the moment, please get in touch. If you have a bike to donate, please get in touch with CCS Village Agent Izzy via email izzy@Somersetrcc.org.uk with your name and phone number and a brief description of the bike or call 07931 018 045 to arrange for a free collection.

For anyone in a transport crisis, Izzy also works as the CCS West Somerset Transport Agent ready to help people who are struggling due to a lack of transport in the area.

Taunton and West Somerset Bike Appeal is funded by Somerset West and Taunton Council.

CCS (Community Council for Somerset) is a leading local charity that works in the heart of Somerset’s communities to inspire and enable positive change. Through its wide network of passionate local experts and diverse projects, consultancy and funding, CCS brings the right people and services together to improve the lives of individuals; building community capacity and support for emerging and existing enterprises right across the county – helping Somerset to thrive.

Somerset Day

We want everyone to get involved and fly the flag for Somerset from the weekend of 8 May through to Tuesday 11 May, Somerset Day.

We want to see the County covered in red and yellow flags, bunting and window stickers from the weekend of 8 May through to Tuesday 11 May, Somerset Day, so please can you help make Somerset Day 2021 a success and help us get the message out far and wide.

Whether it’s the distinctive Somerset flag with its bright red dragon waving from a flagpole, or someone’s own painted picture in their front window, we need to spread the word that this is the time to fly the flag for Somerset.

Here are are the links you can use to buy or download assets and to promote the Fly the Flag for Somerset via noticeboards, newsletters, community Facebook groups etc:

We have had a great initial response to the campaign and are looking forward to seeing our County covered in a sea of Somerset flags!

All the best,

Nigel
Chair of Somerset County Council

Changes to local government

As you know there is an ongoing proposal to create a Unitary authority in Somerset and there are two proposals:

  • One Somerset – promoted by Somerset County Council to create a single new authority for the present county of Somerset
  • Stronger Somerset – promoted by the four District Councils (Somerset West and Taunton, Sedgemoor, South Somerset and Mendip) which would lead to two new Unitary Councils based on the boundaries of Somerset West and Taunton/Sedgemoor and South Somerset/Mendip

Consultation is open to all.

These proposed changes to our local democracy represents the biggest Council change since 1974 so it is important that everyone interested has the opportunity to have their say.

To find out more and register your view go to the ‘proposals for unitary local government‘ website. Consultation closes on Monday 19 April.

Census 2021

Census 2021 will provide a snapshot of modern society

Households across the Country will soon be asked to take part in Census 2021.

The census is a once-in-a-decade survey that gives us the most accurate estimate of all the people and households in England and Wales. It has been carried out every decade since 1801, with the exception of 1941.

It will be the first run predominantly online, with households receiving a letter with a unique access code, allowing them to complete the questionnaire on their computers, phones or tablets.

“A successful census will ensure everyone from local government to charities can put services and funding in the places where they are most needed,” Iain Bell, deputy national statistician at the Office for National Statistics, said.

“This could mean things like doctors’ surgeries, schools and new transport routes. That’s why it is so important everyone takes part and we have made it easier for people to do so online on any device, with help and paper questionnaires for those that need them.”

Census day will be on March 21, but households across the country will receive letters with online codes allowing them to take part from early March.

The census will include questions about your sex, age, work, health, education, household size and ethnicity. And, for the first time, there will be a question asking people whether they have served in the armed forces, as well as voluntary questions for those aged 16 and over on sexual orientation and gender identity.

Results will be available within 12 months, although personal records will be locked away for 100 years, kept safe for future generations.

For more information, visit the census website.