Sunday, 29 November 2020

Improved Broadband Connection

Residents have the option to apply for an improved broadband connection via the Universal Service Obligation (USO), which gives consumers the legal right to request a ‘decent’ broadband connection. This may not enable a full fibre connection to the property, but is likely to improve available speeds. Residents can apply to either BT or KCOM for the USO, and can find out more about how it works at the following links:

BT -


Gigabit Voucher Scheme

Just to let you know about the Gigabit Voucher Scheme (GBVS), which has been financially matched by East Riding of Yorkshire Council. The aim of the scheme is to help residents and small businesses with poor internet speeds (of which there are sadly many in our rural ward - so this scheme is very important for our area) upgrade to the better internet speed they deserve living in the 21st century.

Residents or small businesses/SME’s (which in this case is defined as, a business who employees less than 249 people and has an annual turnover of less than £44 million a year) with internet speeds of less than 100mbps are entitled to make use of the GBVS. Those that do, need to apply directly to their supplier of choice from a list of suppliers approved by Building Digital UK (BDUK). The supplier of choice then costs the delivery of a connection and applies to BDUK to offset the costs with funding of up to £1500 for residential households or £3500 for business premises put forward by the Government (and in the East Riding this has been matched by ERYC, meaning twice as many people can benefit from this scheme).

There is also a ‘top-up’ scheme available as part of GBVS that will double the funding contribution to households or a business if specific criteria is met, such as if the premises is extremely rural or if internet speeds are extremely poor in that specific area. In some cases it may also be necessary for residents and businesses to contribute towards the cost of the upgrade if the Government/ERYC funding does not cover the full cost of the upgrade, however, I think these will be a very small minority of cases.

Applications to the GBVS must be made by a group of premises (two or more), so the residents who wish to apply for this may need to talk to their neighbours and apply as a pair or even a whole street (the more the better).

Full details of the scheme, who is eligible and how to apply are available here:

A Message from Sir Greg Knight MP

The Government's Winter Plan and Covid 19 Tier 3 Poster  can be viewed  by clicking on the links.

I am writing to update you on the latest information regarding the government’s new regulations for combating the coronavirus pandemic.

Yesterday, the government announced the full details of the tier system which will replace the national lockdown when it ends on 2nd December, including which areas will fall into the highest tiers.

The government has used five measures to determine what tier each area should be placed in. These are: case detection rates in all age groups, case detection rates in the over 60s, the rate at which cases are rising or falling, positivity rate and pressure on the NHS. Taking a holistic view of these statistics in the East Riding, the government has placed the area in tier 3, a very high alert level.

It is important to note that Tier 3 restrictions are stronger than they were before the lockdown, as the government is of the view that the old restrictions were insufficient.

I have already been in contact with the Health Secretary and have asked him to review certain aspects of the proposals and I am currently awaiting his response. 

In the meantime, I have attached a document which sets out the government’s COVID-19 Winter Plan, along with a graphic which details the restrictions under tier three.

I appreciate that these restrictions are difficult, especially given that much of our area is very rural, and rates of transmission locally may be now lower than previously. Nonetheless, the government view is that these tiered restrictions are designed to be easily understood and are not vulnerable to widespread exploitation. That is why tiers have been allocated based on county areas, rather than districts, wards or smaller areas.

These tiers will be reviewed every two weeks, and I have been assured that the restrictions will only remain in place for as long as they are necessary.

With the optimistic news about vaccines being announced recently, the end is in sight. However, we must remain vigilant in these next few months before we can vaccinate the vulnerable. By doing so, we will save thousands of lives.

If you have any further concerns or queries, please do not hesitate to contact me.

Yours sincerely,

Sir Greg Knight MP

Office of Rt Hon Sir Greg Knight MP
Member of Parliament for East Yorkshire
House of Commons, Westminster, London, SW1A 0AA
email c/o

Saturday, 28 November 2020

Information about East Riding Community Hub and Caller Collect

 Your East Riding Community Hub and Caller Collect

East Riding of Yorkshire Council is working with volunteers, businesses and community partners to help residents stay safe and well during the coronavirus pandemic.

If you need help with medication contact your local pharmacy and they may be able to deliver it.

If you need help getting food get in touch with your local supermarket or retailer and they may be able to deliver to you.

If you already have friends, family, neighbours or volunteers who can help you, you should continue with these arrangements. 

If you do not have support network call (01482) 393919

email or visit

Caller Collect

Are you looking for someone to talk to?

CallER Collective is here to offer a friendly ear for a chat about anything and everything.

Just call (01482) 215929 between 8am - 10pm every day. 

Friday, 27 November 2020

East Riding Covid Tier Announcement

 East Riding of Yorkshire Council – COVID-19 Tier Announcement

Residents of the East Riding are being urged to follow new COVID-19 safety guidance from next Wednesday (2, December) with the news that the area will move into Tier 3 (Very High) when the national restrictions end.

The Government has today announced that the East Riding, along with Hull and many other nearby areas, will all be in the highest of the three-level restrictions system.

Ministers have made decisions on which areas are in which tiers based on factors such as how quickly infection rates are rising or falling, the ratio of positive tests and the current and projected pressure on the NHS.

Some of the key aspects of Tier 3 restrictions are:

  • No mixing of different households indoors or outdoors, including hospitality venues and private gardens

  • The rule of six applies in outdoor public spaces such as parks

  • Pubs and restaurants closed, except for take-away and delivery services

  • Indoor entertainment venues closed

  • Accommodation such as hotels, B&Bs, campsites, and guest houses must close. There are several exemptions, such as for those who use these venues as their main residence, and those requiring the venues where it is reasonably necessary for work or education and training

  • Guidance against travelling in and out of Tier 3 areas

  • Personal care, such as hairdressing, is allowed

The Tier restrictions will come into effect from the beginning of Wednesday, 2 December (00.01). Until then, the national restrictions will remain in place. The Government has said it will review tier allocations by 16 December.

Councillor Richard Burton, leader of East Riding of Yorkshire Council, said the authority would continue to do everything it can to keep supporting local people and businesses through the pandemic.

He said: “This has been such a long battle against COVID-19 since March and we have seen a number of different phases of restrictions on our daily lives but I’m confident the people of the East Riding will again respond with the right attitude and a determination to do the right thing.

“The vast majority of our residents and businesses have been fantastic in their efforts to curb the spread of COVID-19 and in supporting each other through this pandemic. We’re asking you now to keep responding positively as we move into this new phase and to do what is being asked of you so that we can return to some kind of normality as soon as possible and as safely as possible.

“We know some residents, along with business owners, managers and workers, will be frustrated with this news and we know there will be understandable concern about the situation but we will continue to do all we can to protect and support our most vulnerable residents, to suppress the spread of this virus and to save lives.

“While dealing with the huge challenges COVID-19 presents, we will also do our utmost to continue to provide essential services to our local communities and we’re again asking you to keep demonstrating that brilliant #TogetherEastRiding public spirit to get through this.”

Cllr Burton said the council would keep helping residents and businesses with a range of support and advice, from financial aid to health and wellbeing services.

He also said: “There are reasons for optimism. More is now known about COVID-19 than at the start of the pandemic and good progress continues to be made in terms of vaccine development and the use of therapeutics to aid in treatment.

“With these developments and our continued determination to get through this together, I’m confident that the light at the end of the tunnel will shine on an East Riding which is a fantastic and safe place to live, work, shop, learn, play, invest and visit.”

Andy Kingdom, director of public health for East Riding of Yorkshire Council, urged residents to keep following the council’s 3 Steps To Safety: Prevent. Notice. Act. 

He said: “Handwashing, respecting social distance, ventilating inside spaces and wearing face coverings, unless you are exempt, are simple but extremely effective ways people can help to prevent the spread of the virus. 

“Equally important are always noticing when you have any of the COVID-19 symptoms and immediately acting by self-isolating and getting tested as soon as possible. 

“If people do these basic things correctly, then they can suppress the spread of the virus and not only protect themselves but protect their loved ones and ultimately save lives.” 

Further information about the Tier 3 restrictions and what you can and cannot do, along with advice about helping to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and what support is available to residents and businesses, is available at 

If you have any symptoms of COVID-19 – either a high temperature; a new, continuous cough; or a loss or change to your sense of smell or taste - you should self-isolate immediately and then request a test as soon as possible at or by calling 119.

Turkey Raffle

 Turkey raffle

Joan Huxley has kindly donated one of her turkeys for raffle in support of St Giles Church.  Covid-19 has had a significant effect on fundraising activities for the church but our costs remain the same.

All Joan's turkeys are traditionally reared, hand (dry) plucked and hung. The turkey to be raffled is approximately 6Kg.  The raffle is being run under the Bielby 100 Club lottery licence and tickets are £5 each.

To purchase a ticket for the raffle please make payment directly to the church’s bank account and email me ( with your contact details:
Account name: Bielby Parochial Church Council of St Giles
Account number: 83093931
Sort code: 60-16-35
Payment reference: your name

Alternatively, please post payment with contact details through our letter box (Old School House - white house next to Church).

The PCC very much appreciates the support from the village, without which upkeep of St Giles Church would be very difficult.

Best wishes,

Steve Smith
Treasurer, Bielby PCC
Old School House
01759 318459

Friday, 20 November 2020

Pocklington Rugby In The Community Free Christmas Lunch 19th or 20th December 2020


19th or 20th December 

After such a difficult year Pocklington Rugby In The Community hope to bring a little cheer. 

How would you like a FREE Christmas Lunch delivered to your door on either of the above dates. 

Please contact us on: 

Or ring 

07788 100201 (Debbie Britton

07809 493866 (Andy Bowden)

Wednesday, 18 November 2020

Police Newsletter November 2020

Here is the latest information from Humberside Police.

Please click on the links below to open the newsletter for each area:-

Wednesday, 11 November 2020

Electrical appliance repairs for charity

 Electrical appliance repairs for charity?


Does anyone know of a local charity repair shop willing and able to receive broken electrical appliances, repair the items and then donate the repaired items to good causes?


I have a number of substantial gym and gardening electrical items that are no longer working due to want of repair; all the items were operating in good working order but now require either repair or disposal.

- I have replaced most of the items with new, and I am about to dispose of these old, broken items.

However, as the items are actually in reasonable condition apart from the need of some repair, it seems such a waste to just dump them at the council waste tip.

- I would much rather donate the items to charity if there is a charity repair shop willing to receive the items, repair them and then donate the items so they can be reused (and help the planet by preventing waste!).


The items are:-


1.) Recumbent exercise bicycle, professional gym standard, ‘Bodybuilder Australia’ (replacement value approximately £1,100)

- Rubber drive belt shredded, requires replacement rubber drive belt.


2.) Garden strimmer, electric, MacAllister MGT600 (only £22 in B&Q clearance sale), complete with power cord and plug.

- Motor appears to have ‘burnt out’, motor requires repair or replacing.


3.) Garden lawn mower, electric Qualcast MowerSafe 30, complete with power cord, plug removed (replacement value approximately £55).

- Motor appears to have ‘burnt out’, motor requires repair or replacement.


4.) Chain saw, electric, B&Q Oregon PP350, complete with chain, power cord and plug (replacement value approximately £100).

 - One anchor screw missing from chain arm, screw needs replacing.


5.) Hedge trimmer, cordless, B&Q Performance PWR18VHTA (replacement value approximately £95), complete with original cardboard packing box, 8 V DC 1700 mA Ni-Cd rechargeable battery, charging stand, charging transformer with power cord and plug.

- Hedge trimmer in good working order; fault with either the charging transformer and/or charging stand (power light and charging light do not light up) – cannot recharge battery.


Photographs of the items can be provided upon request.


If anyone knows of a charity repair shop that may be willing to take these items, please contact:

Ian Ross


Tuesday, 3 November 2020

Bielby Remembrance Day Ceremony Reinstated

Bielby Remembrance Day Ceremony Reinstated

The Government has revised its regulations and confirmed (3/11/20) that Remembrance ceremonies and services can take place, provided social distancing is maintained. So, we shall reinstate our ceremony as originally planned:

Remembrance Sunday 8th November

10.50 am Churchyard War Memorial

Lament on the pipes

Customary words

Two minutes' silence

''The Battle is O'er'' - pipes

Feel free to gather in or outside the churchyard, but please observe social distancing.

Monday, 2 November 2020

A Message from Cllr Mike Stathers








Four years ago, I was instrumental in the launch of the Western Parishes Liaison Group, a forum where Parish Council chairs and clerks from many of the 28 Wolds Weighton Parishes and later the six Pocklington Provincial parishes came together to discuss issues affecting their communities and to ask for help and intervention from the Ward councillors.

Clearly, this Group is currently unable to meet, certainly not in the form of attended meetings, so I felt it was important to bring you up to date on just a few of the key issues affecting our towns and villages.



I was first elected to the East Riding of Yorkshire Council in 2015 and spent several years learning how best to represent our residents at County Hall, serving on various planning committees, the ERYC Pensions Committee and the Humberside Police and Crime Panel.

In May 2019, I was given a role on Cabinet and handed one of the largest portfolios, Planning and Enhancing Communities.

In July, this year, I was elected Deputy Leader of the Council, working with all Cabinet members but focusing my efforts on Covid 19 Recovery, our housing strategy, affordable homes and communications. While this is a great honour and generates a significant workload, I am still a Ward councillor first and foremost.



The biggest challenge facing all of us is facing up to and dealing with the coronavirus pandemic. This is piling the pressure on every one of us, on our lifestyles, our employment, our shopping and, most of all our health.

It will also significantly impact on the financial health of ERYC. In the next few weeks, councillors will be entering into the budget setting process where we fix our financial programmes for the next year, making sure we can continue to deliver the 600-plus services your Council provides.

The full financial impact of the pandemic will not be known for some time but our officers will be working hard to balance the books even though we could well face substantial loss of income from our leisure services and as a result of Council Tax defaults and reductions in business rate payments as Covid takes its financial toll on families and businesses.

ERYC is one of the highest performing local authorities in the country and a financially strong organisation and I am confident that we will remain strong and well balanced financially in the coming years.

Along with the Leader, Cllr Richard Burton, I receive almost daily updates on the pandemic and how it is affecting our residents, but one thing we can all do is keep a close watch on our communities, especially the elderly and vulnerable in our villages.

As Ward and Parish councillors, we should all be doing this - asking our posties to let us know if they have any concerns about individuals, recruiting delivery men and women to act as look-outs, talking to our refuse collection teams - all in the hope they will be the collective eyes and ears of our communities, looking out for our residents, especially those who live in the more remote villages, farms and lanes of Wolds Weighton.



The question of whether or not we should provide free school meals for some of our school children during holidays has become a hot topic, a vexed issue due to the Government’s unpopular stance. We know there are many needy families in the East Riding and no one wants to see any child go without food.

That’s why myself and the Leader met with our Chief Executive on Monday morning (Oct 26) to tell her that if the Government won’t help, we will. Within four hours, the Leader and myself had secured just over £100,000 of funding from reserves to enable us to offer vouchers to families in need, vouchers that have to be applied for but can quickly result in £15 per child being paid directly into the parents’ bank account.



This summer, Government tasked ERYC and Hull City Council with producing a foundation document that could, if eventually accepted, lead to the formation of a Combined Mayoral Authority (CMA). Both ERYC and HCC would continue to exist as unitary authorities, delivering the services they deliver today, with the same identities, the same structure and the same number of councillors.

However, sitting above the current structure would be a Cabinet consisting of three senior elected members from each authority led by an elected Mayor. That elite unit would be largely responsible for what we call the ‘big ticket” projects, such as major infrastructure schemes, strategic employment opportunities, business support and inward investment.

Should the CMA be accepted and established, it would receive a £25m per annum ‘gain share’ fund for 30 years. This sounds a lot but in reality it isn’t. We, along with Hull City, have asked in our submission for funding amounting to £1.6bn to be spent on a huge range of projects. One of the key benefits of a CMA is that decisions on large-scale expenditure, historically and currently made mostly at Whitehall, would be made here.

As elected members who are in daily dialogue with our residents, we know that this will not be readily welcomed by many in the East Riding, but we have been forced into a corner, largely because our local authority neighbours to the north are being pushed into full local government reorganisation, the two south bank unitary authorities have chosen to join with a Greater Lincolnshire while West and South Yorkshire have already decided to go their own way with elected Mayors.

The joint ERYC/HCC submission was presented to Government in early September and as I write we have not received its response. When we do, the Leader of ERYC will unveil detailed plans for a comprehensive consultation programme with our residents so you will have your chance to air your views.



Many Town and Parish Councils have grave concerns over the very radical changes this White Paper is proposing. So do I.

I spoke at Full Council recently, basically to urge ERYC to send a strong message back to Government that we don’t like much of their proposal and that the planning boffins in London should think again.

Very briefly, the White Paper proposed the biggest change in our planning system since the 1940s and I feel it could reduce our community involvement in the planning decision-making process.

Here in East Yorkshire, our planning performance is officially recognised as being among the best in the country, so why change it? We receive 6,500 applications a year, 90 per cent of which are successfully dealt with under officer delegations and with 95 per cent being determined on time.

It’s aim is to streamline the planning system and calls for greater use of digital technology, more brownfield development, new homes to be built quicker, replace the current developer contribution system with an infrastructure levy and easing of permitted development rights.

Many planning authorities, including ERYC, have expressed their concerns at the proposals, believing they could represent too much change too soon.

I’m all in favour of progress but I refer you back to my earlier comment that I am a Ward councillor first and foremost, elected to speak up for the residents of Wolds Weighton and even though this proposal has come from our Conservative Government and even though I am a Conservative councillor, the views of our residents remain top priority so my message to Boris is TAKE IT BACK AND THINK AGAIN!


So there we are……just a snapshot of some of the huge challenges we face in the East Riding. In addition, there are childrens’ services to be maintained, pressures on adult social care, potholes to be repaired, bus services under threat, grass verges to be cut, roads to be repaired, village drains cleared …. the list is endless, but with the help of our friends in the Town and Parish Councils the work goes on.

Thank you for reading and I hope you found some if not all of the above of interest. Please feel free to contact me at any time or speak with my Wolds Weighton Ward colleagues, Cllr Leo Hammond and Cllr David Rudd.

I know it’s early but let me wish everyone a very Happy Christmas. Stay safe, stay well, most of all look after each other.




As Deputy Leader, I also represent the Council on various regional and national bodies, including:

East Riding Local Development Framework

Flood Protection and Resilience Board

Housing Tenant Forum

The County Councils Network

The Local Government Association

Transport for the North Scrutiny Committee

York, North Yorkshire and East Riding Housing Board

East Riding Rural Partnership

Humber and Wolds Rural Action

Pocklington School Governor

Sunday, 1 November 2020

Remembrance Sunday Ceremony Cancelled

Remembrance Sunday Ceremony Cancelled

Unfortunately, due to the Government's latest Covid regulations (issued 31/10/20), Bielby's Remembrance Sunday Ceremony is cancelled.

Furthermore, there will be no services at St Giles's until December at the earliest.

Halloween Thanks

Thank you to all who had pumpkins out or sweets or glow sticks. Jon and Beatrice's scary scene was also a hit. Everyone's efforts much appreciated, the children had a lovely time and stayed safe.

Pumpkin Trail - I will leave the pumpkin trail up for another week in case you didn't get chance to hunt and count how many pumpkin pictures you could find.