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Thursday 1st April - Pinch and a Punch the 1st of the month...

Evening Echo:
  • THE health trust which serves Basildon and Thurrock has been praised for its customer care, clean clinics and standard of service. Health regulator the Care Quality Commission has given NHS South West Essex Primary Care Trust the all-clear when it comes to the standards of health services it provides.  The commission – which demanded urgent action at Basildon Hospital’s accident and emergency unit in October after condemning low standards of hygiene – is reviewing health services at every PCT in the country. This coincides with the introduction of its new system of stricter standards of care.
 
  • SEAL-watching trips from Southend Pier could be available from the summer if a former City worker achieves his dream.   Graham Manning, 51, wants to set up the trips because he has been made redundant three times since 2008. Now the dad-of-two is hoping to launch his own business running trips to watching seal colonies on the mudflats off Chalkwell. Keen sailor Mr Manning came up with the idea of the trips after a conversation with his brother Nigel, who heard visitors to the pier talking about the estuary’s seal colonies through his work as a volunteer at the RNLI shop. Using some of his redundancy money, Mr Manning began to draw up a business plan and approached Southend Council about what he would need to set up the business.  Provided he gains a boatmaster’s licence from the Maritime and Coastguard Agency and passes courses in fire and sea safety, Mr Manning hopes to be running trips by June.
 

Total Essex:

  • AFTER years of losing out to the green glamour of St Patrick's Day, the campaign to celebrate St George is finally gaining ground. This year, St George's Day celebrations are being held across the district, with Wickford taking a lead in recognising our patron saint.   As well as running the community day on April 24, the day after St George's Day, Douglas is also running an event at his own Bar Plazma, in the High Street, on Thursday 22.  More than 30 groups across Billericay, Wickford and the rest of the district are holding a St George's Day party with the help of the DIY Party in a Box scheme being run by Basildon District Council.Voluntary, religious and community groups can still request one of the boxes to host their own celebration.  Groups can still apply for a box by contacting the council on 01268 294561.
  
  • FAMILIES desperate to go green were pointed in the right direction as Billericay launched an environmental campaign. Billericay is the first town in Essex to take on the challenge of going green after it was revealed that the average carbon footprint for homes in the town is 20 per cent larger than elsewhere in the UK.  The Greening campaign was officially launched at the Emmanuel Church, in Laindon Road, on March 23 with the help of Piper Terrett – the Energy Saving Trust's green voice of the UK.The audience at the meeting voted for their favourites from a list of 15 energy saving ideas and set targets for cutting emissions.They all agreed to turn off lights when leaving a room, walk if journeys are less than a mile and turn off appliances usually left on standby.Each of these small changes could reduce our carbon dioxide output by 20kg a year, as well as saving homeowners cash.Cllr David Knight, who is chairing the Greening Campaign in Billericay, said: "A house would save £800 a year if all the suggestions on the list were put in place."

SPORT

RYMAN DIVISION 1NORTH
Ilford  VS  Northwood     Postponed
Redbridge  1 -  0 Waltham Forest 

ITV to screen FA Trophy final
Thursday 1st April 2010



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