03 Aug GY Today 3rd August 2018
The region’s ambulance trust could be asking volunteers to drive ambulances to help cope with winter pressures, it has been revealed.
East of England Ambulance Trust (EEAST) faced demand last winter, with more than 3,200 calls answered every day.
And in a bid to stop a repeat this winter, bosses have asked community first responder (CFR) volunteers whether they would be prepared to drive ambulances in “very early discussions” on how they could be utilised.
CFRs respond to local emergency calls and provide life saving first aid in those vital minutes before an ambulance arrives.
The use of volunteers to drive ambulances is thought to be common place in countries such as Canada, the USA, Australia, and New Zealand.
Suggestion was also made in the HSJ that the trust would look to bring in the military to support staff over the winter.
But it is believed this referred to the Military Assistance to Civil Authorities (MACA) Protocol, which can kick in in times of crisis.
Two years after a devastating blaze destroyed the heart of Great Yarmouth’s main tourism thoroughfare new buildings are set to rise up on the wasteland site.
It has been overgrown with weeds since a bowling alley and indoor market were engulfed in flames in the early hours of Friday August 5, the height of the summer season.
Owner Phil Thompson said it would be a relief to get started on the scheme, finally approved last month, after years of upset and frustration.
Under the scheme, ten shops, eight apartments and 15 houses will rise up in place of the indoor market and bowling alley, reckoned the oldest in the country.
Work is due to begin in the next few weeks with the new retail units welcoming their new tenants by Easter next year.
Priority will be given to market traders made homeless by the blaze.
More than 100 firefighters and 41 appliances tackled the fire.
Mr Thompson said the forensic examination was ongoing although the cause of the fire had been traced to an ice-cream freezer.
Inspectors have told the region’s mental health trust that issues last year have not been fixed quick enough.
The Care Quality Commission (CQC) returned to Norfolk and Suffolk Foundation Trust (NSFT) in May to check up on the trust’s progress.
NSFT was judged inadequate and placed into special measures last year.
And although a report released yesterday found improvements had been made, there was concern the “pace of change had been slow in respect of some issues” and “patients did not benefit from safe services in all areas”.
The CQC recognised recommendations had been put in place, including making sure staff had access to alarms, and a plan was in place to stop wards being mixed sex.
Although some progress had also been made in recruiting staff, and both staffing and bed levels were found to be sufficient, the report still found staffing in the community mental health teams was still lacking, although the trust said they had since seen improvement .
The report also found 13pc of patients across the trust did not have a care coordinator.
Developers hoping to build more than 70 homes behind a school in Gorleston should finally discover the project’s fate next week.
Lowestoft-based Badger Building’s bid to develop land behind St Mary’s Roman Catholic School on East Anglian Way and will find out if they will be successful next week. On Wednesday, it could finally be resolved, with Great Yarmouth Borough Council’s planning committee expected to approve its latest revision – a return to its original form.
Earlier in the year, the house builder had looked to build 96 homes on the land, which included a controversial access point through Gorleston recreation ground, off Church Lane.
But after fierce opposition, including a petition signed by more than 1,500 people, Badger agreed to scrap the scheme, instead reverting back to its original plan for 71 homes.
Should the application be approved, this car park and drop-off point would be gifted to the diocese running the school.
The scheme may also see expansion work funded for another of the borough’s schools – Wroughton Infant Academy
The plans go before committee on Wednesday, August 9, with officers recommending it for approval.
Could there be a new drive through KFC coming to town?
An application has been submitted to Great Yarmouth Borough Council to build a new restaurant close to the Gapton Hall Retail Park and near Tesco and Frankie and Benny’s, which will be occupied by the fast food giants.
The new site would be located off Mitchell Drive and is planned to include a drive-through lane – a first for Kentucky Fried Chicken restaurants in the borough.
The application is up for decision next week, with officers recommending the borough council’s planning committee give it the green line at its meeting on Wednesday.
If the plans are approved, the franchisee has also agreed with the council to ensure the branches on Regent Road and Gorleston High Street remain open for at least five years from the new site’s opening date.