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Agenda item

Chairman's Announcements


The Chairman placed on record his congratulations to all those in the region who were recognised in the Queen’s New Year Honours, with special mention to:-

·         Gary Ridley, Assistant Chief Officer, Durham Constabulary who was awarded an OBE for services to Policing;

·         Former Derwentside District Councillor, Durham County Councillor and Alderwoman Michele Hodgson from Stanley who was awarded an MBE for services to Fire and Rescue;

·         Dorothy Rand from Chester-le-Street who was awarded an MBE, for services to local government and the community; and

·         Christine Robson from Stanley who was awarded an MBE, for services to the Fire and Rescue Service and to the community.


The Council joined with the Chairman in congratulating these recipients, together with everyone else in County Durham who had been recognised in the New Year Honours.


The Chairman was pleased to report that a member of staff from the Council had been selected to attend a prestigious training programme at the Houses of Parliament.


Rich Hurst, education development advisor with responsibility for citizenship at the council’s education development service, was selected from more than 170 applicants to attend ‘Teachers Institute, which gave teachers from all parts of the UK a detailed understanding of how parliament worked.  Those taking part in the programme then became UK Parliament Teacher Ambassadors and go on to teach students and fellow education professionals about democracy and the Houses of Parliament.


The Leader of the Council emailed Members on 17 January following the Cabinet meeting, regarding the Aykley Heads Strategic Employment Site.  Members were now aware of the outline proposals to relocate the county’s archives, along with a number of other services to Mount Oswald Manor on the outskirts of Durham City, including a new history centre and registry office.  In his email, the Leader explained the immediate priority to begin a public consultation on what should be located within the new history centre. 


A drop-in session had been arranged to follow the Council meeting where all Members were invited to fill in a questionnaire to help shape the project.


If Members were not able to talk to the staff on hand at the drop in session following the County Council meeting, they could find out more and fill in the online questionnaire at until 18 February.


All Members were invited to attend a Suffragette Centenary Celebration march in Bishop Auckland on Saturday 3 February at 12 p.m.  This was probably the first in the region to celebrate the 100th Anniversary of the passing of the Representation of People Act 1918 that enabled women over 30 to vote for the first time.  More details could be provided by contacting Councillor Joy Allen.


The final announcement was about Holocaust Memorial Day and the Chairman hoped members would wear the badges provided.


Democratic Services
Durham County Council
County Hall
County Durham
03000 269 714