Monthly Archives: January 2023

Get a Warm Welcome at Your Local Library

Warwickshire Libraries are gifting Warm Bags and Toiletry Bags, while stocks last, at our Warwickshire County Council run branches to help people impacted by cost-of-living increases.

This offer is in partnership with the Warwickshire Local Welfare Scheme, funded by the Household Support Fund. 

People are encouraged to come into a Warwickshire Library branch where they will find the bags in a designated area, and they can just be collected for free. The Warm Bags and Toiletry Bags will be available from Monday 30 January.
The Warm Bag contains a blanket, hat, scarf, hot water bottle, and gloves.  
The toiletry bags are sub-divided into three offers:   

·         One toiletry bag containing female sanitary/period products.    

·         Hygiene products for children (containing toothpaste for 3-8 years, toothbrush for 6+ years, shampoo, and bubble bath).   

·         Hygiene products for adults (containing toothpaste, toothbrush, deodorant, shower gel and soap).  

 Warwickshire Library branches are also functioning as Warm Hubs; this initiative is called  

‘Warm Welcome’.

The following link contains more information on the ‘Warm Welcome’ offer:  

To find out more about the work Warwickshire Libraries are doing to help people with the cost-of-living increases, please find details on the subject on the following Warwickshire Libraries blog:  

We also want to support our Warwickshire residents who could be experiencing some form of digital exclusion in everyday life. Digital exclusion comes in many forms and can have real-world impacts such as the ability to communicate with family members and friends, find work and develop career skills, find the best deals on everyday expenses, as well as feeling lonely and isolated from the digital world.

Visit our You Can Online’ website to find out more.  

Photo ID Needed to Vote at the May 2022 Local Elections

New rules are in place at polling stations for the May 2022 local elections – don’t get caught out!


What is this?

From 4 May 2023 onwards, the Elections Act 2022 requires voters who are on the Register of Electors to show photographic identification at polling stations before they are given a ballot paper.

What are the accepted forms of photo ID?

This is the list of items that can be used as photo ID at polling stations:-

• A passport issued by the UK, any of the Channel Islands, the Isle of Man, a British Overseas Territory, an EEA state or a Commonwealth country

• A photo-driving licence issued by the UK, any of the Channel Islands, the Isle of Man or an EEA state

• A biometric immigration document

• An identity card bearing the Proof of Age Standards Scheme hologram (a PASS card)

• Ministry of Defence Form 90 (Defence Identity Card)

• A Blue Badge

• A national identity card issued by an EEA state

• An Older Person’s Bus Pass

• A Disabled Person’s Bus Pass

• An Oyster 60+ Card

• A Freedom Pass

• A Scottish National Entitlement Card issued in Scotland

• A 60 and Over Welsh Concessionary Travel Card issued in Wales

• A Disabled Person’s Welsh Concessionary Travel Card issued in Wales

• A Senior SmartPass issued in Northern Ireland

• A Registered Blind SmartPass or Blind Person’s SmartPass issued in Northern Ireland

• A War Disablement SmartPass or War Disabled SmartPass issued in Northern Ireland

• A 60+ SmartPass issued in Northern Ireland

• A Half Fare SmartPass issued in Northern Ireland

• An Electoral Identity Card issued in Northern Ireland

• A Voter Authority Certificate or a temporary Voter Authority Certificate

If you have one of the above documents and it has expired, it may still be accepted as long as the photograph is still a good likeness of you.

What if you don’t have one of these forms of ID?

If you do not have any of these photo ID items, you will be able to apply for Voter Authority Certificate – a free photographic identification document specific for the purposes of voting.

Applications for Voter Authority Certificates will be accepted from 16th January 2023. You will be able to apply either

When you apply, you will need the following

1. A passport quality photograph;

2. Your National Insurance Number; and

3. Your date of birth

What if you can’t produce photo ID and don’t want to apply for a Voter Authority Certificate?

As someone who is on the electors list, if you feel that you might not have any photo ID and do not wish to apply for a Voter Authority Certificate, you can always apply for a postal vote.

What are the deadlines?

If you wish to apply for a Voter Authority Certificate in time for the District and Parish Elections on 4 May 2023, the deadline is 5pm on 25 April 2023. You can apply after that date for a Certificate for future elections.

Are there any other different forms of Voter Authority Certificate?

Yes. If you are an Anonymous Elector, there is a different form and you should contact the Stratford DC Elections Office for advice on 01789 260874.

Advice on Stray or Dangerous Dogs

Any concerns about stray or out of control dogs, please report to Stratford Dog Warden:

A designated Environmental Protection Technician is employed from Monday to Friday to deliver a professional service, promoting responsible dog ownership and enforcing existing legislation by:

  • responding to all complaints as soon as possible
  • collecting and returning stray dogs ; where strays are microchipped  or wearing visible ID and information is up-to-date, every attempt will be made by the Environmental Protection Technician to reunite them with their owners (£25 statutory fee is payable before dog is released back to owner). Please note, if a dog is seized on more than one occasion, the dog will be impounded and owners will be charged with additional costs
  • transferring stray dogs with no visible ID or microchip to Birmingham Dogs Home to serve the statutory seven-day holding period. Owners reclaiming their dogs during this period will be charged a £25 admin fee, along with daily kennelling fees. This is payable to Birmingham Dogs Home upon collection of the dog. Once their suitability has been assessed, dogs that have not been claimed within the statutory holding period will become available for rehoming
  • promoting responsible dog ownership through patrols, interaction with dog-owners and dog-walkers, and talks to local groups
  • enforcing dog-related by-laws and the Public Spaces Protection (Dog Fouling) Order 2020,  which may result in the issuing of Fixed Penalty Notices
  • signposting customers to relevant services where applicable (such as Environmental Health, Streetscene )
  • working in conjunction with a range of external professionals and agencies including local veterinary practices, Orbit Housing the Police RSPCA K9 Search UK DogLost  and rescue and rehoming establishments

The Law

The Control of Dogs Order 1992  states that ‘any dog in a public place should wear the name and address of the owner either inscribed on the collar or name plate or disc attached to it’. A telephone number is optional but advisable. Remember, this is your pet’s fastest ticket back home should they go missing. Dog ownership is a privilege that must be taken seriously.

Since 6 April 2016, all dog owners have been required to have their dogs microchipped  and registered on an authorised commercial databases. Failure to comply could lead to a £500 fine. As part of this, dog owners are required to register the details of any new owner before they sell or give their dog away. Dog owners also need to keep their contact details up-to-date on the microchip database.

Dangerous Dogs

The amended Dangerous Dogs Act 1991  came into effect on 13 May 2014. This law applies to every single dog owner in England and Wales, regardless of the dog’s size or breed. Under Section 3, it is a criminal offence for the person in charge of the dog to allow it to be ‘dangerously out of control’ in a public place. A dog does not have to bite to be deemed dangerous in the eyes of the law. Generally, if a dog bites a person, it will be presumed to have been ‘dangerously out of control’; however, even if the dog does not bite, but gives the person grounds to feel that the dog may injure them, the law still applies.

If you have been attacked by a dog, please contact the Police. Dog-on-dog attacks are a civil matter and you may wish to seek legal advice.

Health and Social Care Questionniare

Over the next two months Healthwatch Warwickshire are looking into the impact of delays, rising costs and experience of pharmacy when accessing health and social care. You could win a £25 voucher by telling us your experiences, both good and bad.

Fill in our smart survey here – Share your views with our 3 Quick Questions: 

For more information see this poster:

Call us on 01926 422 823 to share your views over the phone or to request a paper copy of the questions. Written responses can be sent back to us at: FREEPOST Healthwatch Warwickshire. Further information about our work can be found at


Become a Schools Admissions Panel Member

Would you like to become an Independent Panel Member to hear School Admission Appeals?

What is the role?

Warwickshire County Council are seeking volunteers to become independent panel members to hear school admission appeals. Independent Appeal Panels consider appeals by parents against school admission decisions in relation to schools within Warwickshire and some neighbouring counties. This is an important role and panels are required by law.

Panel Members need only dedicate as much time as they are willing to offer to the role, our busiest time for appeal hearings is from April to July each year. Hearings are held during the day, in term time.  At the moment we are hearing appeals virtually, however this may go back to in person and hearings will be held at various locations across the County and travel expenses are reimbursed.

What experience will I need?

We are looking for (1) Lay Panel members (people without personal experience in the management of any school or provision of education in any school) and (2) Non-Lay Panel members (people with experience in education, acquainted with educational conditions in the area or parents of a registered pupil at a school).

Panel Members must exercise good judgement and demonstrate sound reasoning skills to ensure fair consideration of every case. You will need to be interested in schools and education and prepared to undertake training for the role – which will be provided by Warwickshire County Council. Current or former members, officers, and employees of the Local Authority, (except teachers and teaching assistants), are excluded from becoming independent panel members.

How do I apply or just find out more?

We are inviting expressions of interest to be submitted to us by e-mail to by no later than 20th January 2023.

If you have any questions about this role, please do not hesitate to telephone either Tania Martin or Jayne Comerford on 01926 736381 or 01926 412082, or alternatively we will be holding an open day where you may come along for an informal discussion on the role and meet the Team. You will also have an opportunity to talk to existing panel members about their experiences.  Provisionally this will take place week commencing 30th January 2023.