Breamish Valley logo linking to Home Page

County Councillor Report (Mar 2023) – Tel. 07779 983072

And also on Facebook: Cllr Wendy Pattison

Portrait photo of Councillor Wendy Pattison
Cllr Wendy Pattison

[All text and above portrait image provided by Cllr Wendy Pattison and used with permission. Received: 02 March 2023.]


Garden Waste

Subscribing to NCC garden waste kerbside collection service can save you time and fuel, as well as mess in your vehicle.

By subscribing to the garden waste collection service, you accept the following terms and conditions:

  1. The garden waste collection service runs from March to November/ December and is chargeable. The Council will carry out a maximum of 20 garden waste collections per household during this period. A sticker and a garden waste bin will be provided (where appropriate), which will be emptied on a day specified by the Council once in every two weeks.
  2. Service eligibility The Council will make every effort to offer its garden waste collection service to all households where it is operationally practicable to do so within current resources. Each collection area/ property must be easily accessible by the refuse collection vehicle which operates in that area. This includes being able to empty bins and manoeuvre the collection vehicles (turn around) easily and safely. The scheme is only available to those properties with gardens that lie within the identified scheme area. Collections will only be offered to properties on either an adopted or planned adopted highway.
  3. Application process / payment Residents will be required to subscribe to the garden waste collection service on an annual basis. Incentive schemes may be offered to / or removed from the residents at the Council’s discretion and will be promoted by the Council. The Council reserves the right to refuse an application for the garden waste collection service where it is not operationally practicable to do so within current resources. Payment can be made by various methods including via internet, over the telephone (but not via the automated payment telephone line) or at Council Information Centres (please note, cash payments will not be accepted at Council Information Centres). Purchase of a subscription includes acceptance of these terms and conditions. Residents can register throughout the year. Later registrations will receive fewer collections during the period of the service and no refunds will be given. The annual fee is for the collection season, regardless of when you sign up and no discount is offered if you sign up later in the year. Upon receipt of payment the Council will issue a garden waste sticker and a garden waste bin (where appropriate). We aim to deliver a bin within 5 working days of clearance of payment. (Exemptions to this clause apply during inclement weather, in cases of operational difficulty or any event of ‘Force Majeure’ and during the winter suspension period of December to February inclusive). Renewal notices are sent out in advance. If you do not renew, collections will stop without further notice from March of the renewal year. The Council reserves the right to vary the fee. Appropriate notice will be given prior to any alteration. The Council has a duty to keep records up to date, therefore there is a requirement of customers to notify the Council of any changes to their personal details. For any queries, contact 0345 600 6400 or visit the Council’s website
  4. Please note Garden waste bins are property of Northumberland County Council. If you no longer require this service, please call us on 0345 600 6400 so we can collect your brown bin.

Could you be a Northumberland Community Health Champion?

Graphic image promoting becoming a Community Health Champion

Northumberland County Council is encouraging residents, workplace representatives, community and voluntary groups to sign up to become a Northumberland Community Health Champion. 

The network of new Northumberland Community Health Champions will help to spread health and wellbeing messages and encourage healthy behaviours. They will become sources of information on all aspects of health and wellbeing, able to signpost people to services and support others to make positive behavioural changes. 

Anyone can volunteer and they will receive regular updates to keep them fully informed.  They don’t need any specific experience, just a willingness to get involved without having to give up a lot of time. Training to become a Community Health Champion just takes one hour a week, for eight weeks.   

And following that, there is the opportunity to gain a Level 2 Royal Society for Public Health qualification for those who are interested. 

Cllr Wendy Pattison, Cabinet member for Adults’ Wellbeing at Northumberland County Council said: “This is a fantastic opportunity for people who are active in their local community as an individual or as part of an organisation, and are confident in having healthy conversations. 

“I am delighted we are introducing this opportunity; it is an ideal way for people to help strengthen networks in their own communities.” 

Gill O’Neill, Director of Public Health at Northumberland County Council said: “Our volunteers are a valued group of individuals who we train and support to enable them to encourage people in the community to be able to make positive changes to improve their health and wellbeing. 

 “Volunteering can be very rewarding, and we are always very grateful to everyone who gives up their time for us.” 

Anyone interested in becoming a Northumberland Community Health Champion can email for more details. 

Residents receive a warm welcome at Northumberland’s Warm Spaces

Residents are receiving a warm welcome this winter thanks to Northumberland’s network of warm spaces.  

Together with its community partners, the council is growing a network of over 150 warm, safe spaces where residents can enjoy a hot drink, have conversations with others or join in activities if they would like.   

Libraries, community hubs, village halls, churches and cafes are among the venues taking part.  

Councillor Wendy Pattison, Cabinet Member with responsibility for Adult Wellbeing, said: “Our friendly warm spaces are for anyone in Northumberland to visit.   

“Every space is unique in what they offer. Some have books and board games, others have free wifi where you can work. There are activities you can join, community projects to get involved with – or just sit quietly.  

 “But they all share the same aim of providing a warm, safe and welcoming space. 

 “Just look out for the warm space window sticker – or search our online map to see what’s available in your community.  

“If any organisation would like to join too, please get in touch.”   

Northumberland County Council works with community and voluntary organisations, including Parish Councils, as part of its response to the rising cost of living. 
 The Warm Spaces network is just a part of this, in addition:  

  • Northumberland Communities Together operates a seven-day-a-week helpline and advises on the support available to residents  
  • Northumberland County Council distribute The Government’s Household Support Fund (HSF) to those who need most, both directly to residents and through the community and voluntary sector to provide support with food, energy and water and other essential household costs 
  • Families continue to receive vouchers during the school holidays towards food, energy and other essential costs.  There is also support for young people in an education setting throughout the year, such as hygiene products, learning equipment, and school uniform   
  • Children and young people are making memories and enjoying nutritious food through the Holiday Activity and Food programme  
  • Community-led food partnership Nourish Northumberland is working together to make sure everyone in Northumberland can access safe, healthy and affordable food.   

Council Leader, Cllr Glen Sanderson, said: “We know that our residents are facing challenging times. I want to assure everyone that support is available if you need it.    

“I urge anyone who is struggling, worrying or simply wants to talk to someone confidentially about their situation to get in touch.    

“I’d like to also take this opportunity to thank our Parish Councils, community and voluntary organisations for their support in ensuring our residents are continually kept safe and well.”  

Phone the Northumberland Communities Together on 01670 620015 between 9am to 6pm, 7 days a week or email   

If it is urgent and someone needs immediate support, help or protection ring the emergency response line OneCall on 01670 536400 – 24/7, 365 days a year. 

Dementia friendly bungalows to support independent living

Graphic image of three bungalows in a row

Planning permission has been granted for 13 dementia friendly affordable bungalows which will be built at Lyndon Walk in Blyth as part of Northumberland County Council’s overall commitment to increase the availability of housing to meet the needs of all residents. 

The bungalows have been designed to specifically support residents who are living with dementia and Alzheimer’s enabling them to live independently in their own home, with support from their spouse, family or carers.    

The two bedroomed properties will be built by Ascent Homes for Northumberland County Council.  They will be available for affordable rent and allocated via a special allocations process led by the county council’s Adult Social Care service.   

The small housing complex will be managed by Northumberland County Council Housing Service staff. Extra care and respite care for the spouse will be provided by a new team.  

The development has been designed throughout to suit dementia clients, with features including level access wet rooms and a technology system in each bungalow that will allow carers to be seen by the resident on a two-way screen. There will also be smoke and heat detectors that can alert carers if needed, signage to aid wayfinding and contrasting colours in the bathroom and hallway doors to help with identification. Outside, there will be an inner sensory garden that is safe and secure for residents to experience. 

 Northumberland has an increasing ageing population with associated health and social care needs. However, getting older and living with a disability or a mental health condition should not be a barrier to living a full, independent life with a choice of appropriately designed, well located accommodation. Providing affordable housing that is well-designed for the elderly and those with disabilities is a key part of our housing strategy. 

Northumberland County Councillor Wendy Pattison, cabinet member for Adults’ Wellbeing added:   

“I am thrilled that this scheme has received the go-ahead. Helping people with dementia was one of my main priorities when I became a cabinet member for adult social care and these bungalows are exactly what I envisaged  

“This supported living scheme has been designed to meet the changing needs of older people and vulnerable needs groups in the Blyth area and will support residents’ desires to live securely and independently in their own homes and communities over their lifetimes.”  

 The provision of more affordable housing, in areas of need, continues to be one of the county council’s top priorities, and our plans include investing millions to address the issue.  “The population of Northumberland is dispersed over a wide area and has varying housing requirements. The new bungalows that are to be built in Blyth have been designed to make life easier for some of our most vulnerable residents and their families. It is intended that the bungalows will be built with the help of funding from Homes England, a government grant funding programme designed to boost the construction of affordable new homes, as well as capital funding from the county council’s Adult Social Care budget to support the delivery of housing to maintain independence. 

UK Web Archive logo

The British Library is preserving this site for the future in the UK Web Archive at