Norman’s Notes – September 2018

Normans Notes

Norman Webster, Town and District Councillor for Mid Sussex and Cabinet Member for Community updates us this month.

I hope you’ve all had a pleasant summer and are ready to deal with the challenges and opportunities ahead.
Don’t forget that MSDC grants are still available for a range of different economic and community initiatives; I believe Fiona Humphreys, at the EGBA, is available to assist members in completing applications for grant funding.
Businesses tap into the benefits of Refill Mid Sussex
Refill Mid Sussex is on a mission to make refilling water bottles as easy, convenient and cheap as possible, by introducing Refill Stations on every street. The exciting Refill Scheme has launched in Mid Sussex to encourage participating cafes, bars, restaurants, banks, galleries, museums and other businesses to sign up to the free Refill app and put a sticker in their window alerting passers-by to the fact they’re welcome to fill up their bottle for free.
Refill Mid Sussex is being delivered by a team of volunteers in partnership with MSDC. It’s a national campaign, with similar schemes running in many different parts of the country. The Council is encouraging new volunteers to join the movement, talk to local businesses about Refill and help them become part of the campaign by putting a sticker in their window.
City to Sea, a not-for-profit organisation headed by entrepreneur Natalie Fee, launched the award-winning Refill Scheme in 2015. It’s estimated that the scheme, now being rolled out nationwide with support from Water UK and local water companies, will cut plastic bottle use by tens of millions each year, as well as substantially increasing the availability of high quality drinking water.
At the launch Cllr Jonathan Ash-Edwards, Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Resources and Economic Growth at Mid Sussex District Council, said “Here in Mid Sussex we’re rightly proud of our stunning landscapes and countryside. Plastics, including single-use plastic bottles, are now the most frequently found type of litter on UK beaches and you don’t have to look far to find them littering our towns and green spaces too. Refill Mid Sussex gives us all the opportunity to help make this type of litter a thing of the past at the same time as saving money. It’s good business sense as well, as customers view businesses that provide free water refills more favourably and are more likely to return to them to make future purchases”.
Refill Mid Sussex builds on the success of Refill around the UK, which now boasts a network of over 12,000 Refill Stations. Find out more about Refill Mid Sussex and how to take part at
Visit the Refill website at to download the free Refill app and find out more about the Refill movement.
The Refill Mid Sussex scheme is part of MSDC’s Plastic Reduction Plan and Sustainability Strategy. For more information visit
New East Grinstead Job Club to open
Do you find it hard to recruit staff? Would you like to support people in developing skills to enhance their employability?
Then you’ll be pleased to hear that The Hope Church (aka Royal City East Grinstead is working with the DWP, Citizen’s Advice, EG Foodbank and other local agencies to establish a free, open to all, people-centred Job Club in East Grinstead.
The Club will offer training in employment and computer skills, 1:1 mentoring and encouragement, assistance with applying for jobs, CV writing and preparing for interviews etc.
The Hope Job Club will open in the New Year at the Jubilee Community Centre, Charlwoods Road, East Grinstead. In the lead up to this, if you are interested in volunteering with them or have connections which may help secure work experience for Club members, you are warmly invited to attend their launch on Saturday, 27 October, 10.30am at the Jubilee Community Centre, East Grinstead.
The Job Club are particularly interested in developing links with local businesses who can support their jobseekers. Is your company looking to engage meaningfully with the local community? Do you have time/skills/contacts you could share?
For further info, or to indicate your attendance on 27 October, please contact 01342 488282 or email THC.JOBCLUB@RCEG.CHURCH .
Mid Sussex Drone 500 STEM challenge 
September saw the launch of an exciting and bigger Mid Sussex STEM Challenge. Following on from the success of the Haywards Heath Town Team’s Burrell Road ACTION Group electric bike competition last year, more local secondary schools and colleges have joined this STEM Challenge which will see them designing, building and marketing a Drone.
Engineering, medical, banking and insurance companies have come together with Tomorrow’s Engineers and STEM Sussex to ensure that students can understand just what a diverse and successful career lies ahead by continuing with Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths subjects. These skills are paramount to the economy of our area, where research has shown that engineering accounts for 34% of turnover.
Caroline Nicholls, High Sheriff of West Sussex, officially opened the Challenge at the MSDC Council Chamber. She was joined by Donna Hitchcock, Executive Director of Colas Limited, and Garry Wall, Leader of MSDC who are sponsoring the Challenge.
Each School’s student team will be charged with assembling a drone to a required specification and for a specific sector of their choice; it must also include additional accessories to allow the teams to develop a business plan and marketing strategy in order to meet all applicable legislation and to take it to market.
Each of the companies involved will provide a STEM Ambassador to work with every participating school as well as bring them into the workplace to show the excitement of the ‘real world’ and to put their STEM learning in context. Not only that but, with the help of Lloyds Banking and 1st Central, the students will prepare a Business and Marketing Plan as, when completed, the winning drones will be available for sale – having been fully tested for EU compliance and legal air space!
Burgess Hill and Haywards Heath schools are involved in this exciting educational project and I would dearly love to see East Grinstead’s two secondary schools involved next year. If you you would like to be a mentor, or feel your child could benefit please do encourage their EG secondary school to join up next year. Contact me via the EGBA or at and I will connect you to the right people.
New permit scheme at Waste Recycle Centres from 1 October
WSCC want to make everyone aware of changes at the Household Waste Recycling Sites (HWRSs), which come into effect from 1 October 2018. A new scheme means householders in West Sussex who use a van, pickup or single axle trailer for private purposes will need to obtain a free permit.
The permit is available to West Sussex residents only and allows those who drive a commercial-type vehicle or have a trailer to continue to use it to dispose of just their household waste. The scheme does not cover waste generated by a business or household waste that has been collected by a trader for a charge.
The permits are being introduced to help address congestion at the sites, eliminate illegal disposal of commercial waste and discourage out-of-county visitors from bringing in large loads.
Over 8,000 permits have been issued so far. But WSCC want to make sure as many people as possible are aware of the scheme before it is fully implemented on 1 October.
As well as the new permit scheme, some vehicles will no longer be allowed to use HWRSs. Restricted vehicles include:
multi axle trailers (four wheels)
horse boxes
tipper trucks
flatbed or dropside trucks
Luton (box) type vans.
For reasons of site safety and reducing congestion all trailers will also be excluded from Bognor Regis and Littlehampton sites.
Please visit to find out more.
Author: fiona bewers
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